Stupid old bigot says the quiet part out loud

Tommy Tuberville, the dumb-ass Republican who has been single-handedly holding up various military appointments, spoke out about why he voted against the latest general to go up for confirmation.

“I heard some things that he talked, about race and things that he wanted to mix into the military,” Tuberville said about Brown.

“Let me tell you something: Our military is not an equal-opportunity employer,” he said.

“We’re not looking for different groups, social justice groups,” Tuberville said. “We don’t want to single-handedly destroy our military from within. We all need to be one,” he added.

He also said, “Our military is becoming so political that we’re going to go south when it comes to readiness.”

You know, the military is an equal opportunity employer — about 31% of the members belong to racial minorities. Maybe he was confused because the senior ranks are far less egalitarian?

At least his last sentence is correct. It’s just that he represents the problem.

Don’t waste our time with Kathleen Stock’s hateful agenda

I have to correct the statement below.

You cannot be a responsible teacher or researcher if you cannot tolerate ideas with which you expect you might disagree.

You cannot be a responsible teacher or researcher if you tolerate lies and demonstrably false ideas.

There is a line we have to draw where we openly repudiate bad ideas presented in bad faith. We should no more have a conference panel at a serious meeting on fallacious ideas about sex than we should have conference panels on creationism and flat earth…unless it’s to flatly reject them. And even then, that has limited utility.

Is it not mismanaged?

Dr Ibram X. Kendi has a noble goal, combatting racism. To that end, he established a Center for Antiracist Research at Boston University that, by some metrics, was highly successful.

Since its announced launch in June 2020, just days after the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis, the center has raised tens of millions of dollars from tech entrepreneurs, Boston-area corporations, and thousands of small donors.

At the time, Kendi, the author of the bestselling 2019 book “How to Be an Antiracist,” said the center would “solve these intractable racial problems of our time.”

Then the complaints started. There were accusations of mismanagement, that Kendi was unreachable, that all that grant money wasn’t being effectively used.

The organization “was just being mismanaged on a really fundamental level,” said Phillipe Copeland, a professor in BU’s School of Social Work who also worked for the center as assistant director of narrative.

Although most decision-making authority rested with Kendi, Copeland said he found it difficult to schedule meetings with him. Other staffers described paralysis in the organization because Kendi declined to delegate authority and was not often available.

Say it ain’t so! I’d want to see evidence that the center was being run poorly.

In recent months, Kendi had been on leave from the center, according to BU.

He returned last week and, in a series of Zoom meetings, told approximately 20 of the center’s staffers that they would be laid off, according to Spencer Piston, a BU professor and leader in the center’s policy office.

The layoffs “were initiated by Dr. Kendi” and represented a strategic pivot, not a response to any financial difficulty, Lapal Cavallario said. The center will now pursue a fellowship model “rather than its current research-based approach,” she said.

Uh, OK. Authoritarian mass firings and a complete redirection of how the center would be run is strong evidence of mismanagement, I would think.

If this is what we’re like, the heart of America is rotten

The Washington Post continues it’s depressing dissection of Ales Hrdlicka. I wish we could say he was a forgotten relic of a benighted time, but no, some anthropologists were still celebrating his life in more recent years.

Rachel Watkins, a biocultural anthropologist, worked at the Natural History Museum in the early 2000s after the Smithsonian had reckoned with what he had done in Larsen Bay. She recalled when employees at the museum gathered around a cake to commemorate the anthropologist’s birthday more than 50 years after his death.

“He was … deified,” said Watkins, now an associate professor and department chair of anthropology at American University. “It’s like Thomas Jefferson at [the University of Virginia].”

Ugh. The old ghoul should be treated as a shameful embarrassment, but instead he’s lionized by some now as much as he was in life (he died in 1943). This newspaper article from 1926 is incredible, not only for how credulous the journalist was,but for how smugly and confidently Hrdlicka makes predictions about the future evolution of the American population — don’t worry about the flappers, they’ll be strict parents.

(You can click on this to get an enlarged article that is marginally readable.)

The modern white nationalists and racists didn’t just appear out of thin air. They’ve been here all along, provided with pseudo-scientific support from establishment scientists like Hrdlicka.

Behold, Matt Walsh, nakedly Nazi

You knew this had to be coming. Matt Walsh, the know-nothing pundit who got mad attention for asking “what is a woman?” and insisting on a fundamental distinction between the sexes, all to justify his hatred of trans people, is airing a different idea now: white supremacy, white extinction theory, the whole kit-and-caboodle of racist Nazi dog whistles. He’s promoting Great Replacement Theory now.

There are really two parts of this story. The first is the story itself, which is the demographic trend where whites are trending towards extinction in the United States. Like, that’s the way it’s headed. And then the other part of the story is the veil of silence around this issue, the wall that is erected around it. And I know you’re gonna say, well, you just read a story about it. So it’s not a silence. They can report on it. So you report and you celebrate diversity, and then you just move on. We don’t talk about it. We don’t think much about it, and that’s it. You aren’t allowed to talk much about it. You certainly – you certainly can’t be concerned about it. You’re not allowed to express any concern. That’s unthinkable. To hear that whites are on their way to minority status and the white population is declining, the worst that you could possibly do is – to talk about it at all is already a problem, but to suggest that there’s any reason at all to be concerned about that, or to be anything less than thrilled by that development is incredibly racist, we’re told.

Notice how the first two thirds of that paragraph are to set up the idea that he’s being persecuted, that no one is allowed to say these stupid words, and how society is policing your thoughts. That’s essential to his strategy, that you consider that his claim is so obvious and strong that people need to censor it even before he makes it. He’s not even going to consider that his great idea is so stupid and indefensible that intelligent people are already tired of hearing it.

People who identify as white are declining in proportion to those who identify with other ethnicities. That’s it. That’s all that is happening. There is no extinction. No one is being “replaced.” It’s how biology works — our species reproduces by mingling DNA between pairs of individuals, so everyone is a hybrid of their parents. It’s also a product of arbitrary cultural biases: if a white person has a child with a non-white person, there is no more loss of identity than if they had a child with a white person, but because of bigoted attitudes, the child is considered non-white. So of course, by definition, the frequency of “pure” white children declines with every generation, even if there is no decline in the frequency of genes contributed by white people. It’s an invented problem with no basis in reality.

Walsh continues, still feeling the need to prefix his comments with the idea that he’s a brave truth-teller that people want to silence.

We know that it’s — like, it doesn’t even need to be said, but I’ll say it anyway because we all know that’s true. But we know that the continued existence of any other race of people is considered deeply important. And the preservation of the historical and traditional racial identity of any nation is considered deeply important. You know? So, for example, if there was an influx of white immigration to a historically Black country, and that was resulting in a giant demographic shift wherein it was becoming a predominantly white country rather than predominantly Black, this would be considered a major, major problem. And there’s no doubt about it. And yet, in the reverse, it is either neutral or cause for celebration. But really it should be a cause for celebration.

Uh, yes — the continued existence of people is important. I’d also add that preserving unique cultures is also valuable. That is not something to worry about here, because the American historical and traditional identity is not at risk, nor are any white individuals. The culture is thriving and expanding as more people contribute to it, which is what you expect of a healthy evolving population.

He seems to have confused what is happening in the US to colonialism, where an external culture invades, takes over, and works to eradicate the native population … you know, like white Europeans did to the native populations of the Americas. That’s what’s really at the root of his problem, though. He thinks that they will do to us what we did to them. Except that’s not applicable: there is no alien “they”. “They” is us. Immigrants are joining us, not conquering us. The white population is diminishing in relative frequency, not because “they” are murdering us, but because we’re happily having consensual sex with each other.

As usual, he then goes off with half-assed distortions of biology.

And you know what? This pertains even to the the animal kingdom. I mean — think if there’s a particular type of, I don’t know, hummingbird that’s going extinct. Even for that, we’re supposed to panic. And if I were to say, hey, whatever. I mean, what does it matter? We — so we don’t have that of hummingbird. We got plenty of other hummingbirds. What does it matter what type of hummingbird it is? What difference does it make? So, yeah, this type of hummingbird is — there’s more of that then there’s less of this. Like, who cares? If I say that, I’m callous because, no, it’s very important that we have all varieties of hummingbirds. Every variety is very, very important. We have to keep them all around. Every part, every animal in the animal kingdom, we gotta keep them all around. It’s extremely important. If any particular variety starts to dwindle, if any particular type of species of animal gets driven out of its territory, it’s a very bad thing. So, it’s interesting that we can see this with hummingbirds, but not with certain kinds of people — well, in particular, one kind of person, which would be white person. The preservation of the hummingbird community is more important than the preservation of the white race.

No. Just no. Race and species are not synonyms. The analogy falls apart from its onset, and is in fact an extremely common trope among racists. I won’t take it apart word by word because that job has already been done: read Human races are not like dog breeds: refuting a racist analogy by HL Norton et al. Here’s the abstract.

In 1956, evolutionary biologist J.B.S. Haldane posed a question to anthropologists: “Are the biological differences between human groups comparable with those between groups of domestic animals such as greyhounds and bulldogs…?” It reads as if it were posted on social media today. The analogy comparing human races to dog breeds is not only widespread in history and pop culture, but also sounds like scientific justification for eschewing the social construction of race, or for holding racist beliefs about human nature. Here we answer Haldane’s question in an effort to improve the public understanding of human biological variation and “race”—two phenomena that are not synonymous. Speaking to everyone without expert levels of familiarity with this material, we investigate whether the dog breed analogy for human race stands up to biology. It does not. Groups of humans that are culturally labeled as “races” differ in population structure, genotype–phenotype relationships, and phenotypic diversity from breeds of dogs in unsurprising ways, given how artificial selection has shaped the evolution of dogs, not humans. Our demonstration complements the vast body of existing knowledge about how human “races” differ in fundamental sociocultural, historical, and political ways from categories of nonhuman animals. By the end of this paper, readers will understand how the assumption that human races are the same as dog breeds is a racist strategy for justifying social, political, and economic inequality.

Just the fact that Walsh brings this argument up is an indictment, biologists can tell you that it is rank bullshit. It’s old-fashioned garbage that I’d expect of Nazis or the KKK, but Walsh takes it for granted.

Once again, have you noticed how you don’t have to probe a transphobe very deeply before you uncover a Nazi?

Another racist outed, time to follow the threads to his promoters

I hadn’t heard of this guy, Richard Hanania, until recently — but I sure was familiar with his old pseudonym, Richard Hoste. He was one of the more hateful, obnoxious, stupid racists who was busy stuffing the internet with lies a decade ago. Now I learn, in one of the most thorough, devastating journalistic takedowns I’ve ever read that Hoste and Hanania were one and the same, and that he’s broken into the mainstream with the complicity of conservative billionaires.

A prominent conservative writer, lionized by Silicon Valley billionaires and a U.S. senator, used a pen name for years to write for white supremacist publications and was a formative voice during the rise of the racist “alt-right,” according to a new HuffPost investigation.

Richard Hanania, a visiting scholar at the University of Texas, used the pen name “Richard Hoste” in the early 2010s to write articles where he identified himself as a “race realist.” He expressed support for eugenics and the forced sterilization of “low IQ” people, who he argued were most often Black. He opposed “miscegenation” and “race-mixing.” And once, while arguing that Black people cannot govern themselves, he cited the neo-Nazi author of “The Turner Diaries,” the infamous novel that celebrates a future race war.

A decade later, writing under his real name, Hanania has ensconced himself in the national mainstream media, writing op-eds in the country’s biggest papers, bending the ears of some of the world’s wealthiest men and lecturing at prestigious universities, all while keeping his past white supremacist writings under wraps.

I remember Hoste, because I’ve long kept half an eye on nasty little websites like Taki’s Magazine, The Unz Review, VDARE, the Occidental Observer, and anything linked to the Pioneer Fund. These are the places some of the most openly racist people, like Richard Spencer or Steve Sailer, let it all hang out nakedly. I’ve always marveled at how they can write such vile, repugnant articles in their safe little hugboxes full of racists, and then walk out in public without shame, even to friendly appreciation from notable academics. It’s one of the tells I recognize for closet racists — people who praise Sailer, for instance, are the kind of slimeballs who read VDARE approvingly, even if they’d never dare to write such things themselves.

Now I’m going to have to add “following Richard Hanania” as another marker for the shy racists.

You’re on notice, guys. Scuttle for the kitchen cabinets as fast as you can, the light has been turned on.

Anyway, a major data leak from Disqus has exposed Hanania’s history, and it’s interesting to see how a low-life troll mainstreamed himself and started grabbing attention and money from more respectable venues. First, he dropped the pseudonym and was writing under his real name, Hanania. Then he started writing somewhat less inflammatory, but still crackling with racism, op-eds and articles that he’d submit to big-name sites, where he’d get picked up by sympathetic editors (they’re everywhere). It also helps to cozy up to rich white people, many of whom already share his views.

The 37-year-old has been published by The New York Times and The Washington Post. He delivered a lecture to the Yale Federalist Society and was interviewed by the Harvard College Economics Review. He appeared twice on “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” Fox News’ former prime-time juggernaut. He was a recent guest on a podcast hosted by the CEO of Substack, the $650 million publishing platform where Hanania has nearly 20,000 subscribers.

Hanania has his own podcast, too, interviewing the likes of Steven Pinker, the famous Harvard cognitive psychologist, and Marc Andreessen, the billionaire software engineer. Another billionaire, Elon Musk, reads Hanania’s articles and replies approvingly to his tweets. A third billionaire, Peter Thiel, provided a blurb to promote Hanania’s book, “The Origins of Woke,” which HarperCollins plans to publish this September. In October, Hanania is scheduled to deliver a lecture at Stanford.

Meanwhile, rich benefactors, some of whose identities are unknown, have funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars into a think tank run by Hanania. The think tank doles out cash to conservative academics, and produces political studies that are cited across right-wing media.

Yes, he has a “think tank,” a term that is long past its past-due date. Hanania’s is called the Center for the Study of Partisanship and Ideology. It’s run out of his house, and mainly seems to be a drop-box for donations that pay his substantial salary. The function of CSPI is…

In addition to being a laundering service for handing out money to reactionary academics, it is a paper mill for “studies” that back up reactionary talking points, to be spun into articles and opinion pieces with headlines such as “Social trends causing rapid growth in people identifying as LGBT, report says” (from the ideological astroturfing Sinclair Broadcast Group), “The Lockdowns Weren’t Worth It” (WSJ) and “The new class war is over identity” (Washington Examiner) — the latter being an anti-LGBTQ screed that ended, “My name is Dominic. I’m a trans woman, and my pronouns are me, me, me.”

It’s a profitable gig, collecting donations from insufferable rich Republicans and shuffling it into bad publications that pollute the body politic, but there’s no “thinking” involved in a think-tank. But it paid off for Hanania! He could use that illusion of serious scholarship to work his way up the grifter’s ladder.

Hanania was making a name for himself. By 2022, he was selected as a visiting scholar at the Salem Center at the University of Texas at Austin. The center — funded through right-wing donors including billionaire Harlan Crow — is led by executive director Carlos Carvalho. “I have no comment,” Carvalho told HuffPost when asked about Hanania.

Hanania was also tapped to be a lecturer for the “Forbidden Courses” program at the University of Austin, the unaccredited school funded by venture capitalists and founded by former New York Times columnist Bari Weiss, now a prominent right-wing influencer herself. The university did not respond to a request for comment about Hanania.

Earlier this year, Hanania spoke to the Yale Federalist Society, the school’s chapter of the conservative legal organization, about what the government has done to “discriminate against whites and men.” The chapter did not respond when asked for comment.

And this October, Hanania is scheduled to teach a seminar at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business. The school did not respond to HuffPost’s request for comment.

He may be dropping a few rungs off that ladder, though. Bari Weiss has said she didn’t know him and wouldn’t have hired him if she had. Oops.

The University of Austin, founded by a group including Bari Weiss in reaction to progressive campus culture and promising freer speech, has drawn a line at the right-wing writer Richard Hanania, after HuffPost revealed that he’d written in favor of eugenics and racism under a pseudonym.

“Richard Hanania has no affiliation with UATX. He was invited once as a speaker. Like many other institutions, we were completely unaware of his pseudonymous, racist writings. Had we known, we would not have invited him,” a spokesman, Hillel Ofek, told Semafor in an email.

His invitations to speak at the Federalist Society probably still stand — they eat up the racist white nationalist stuff there. He’s probably going to face some opposition at Stanford, I hope, but you never know. Apologists for hate seem to have infiltrated many higher levels of society. You don’t have to worry about Hanania’s prospects, he was already gearing up to jump to a new grift.

Hanania mentioned all of these men [Andreesen, Sacks, Ramaswamy, Thiel] in a June Substack post while describing what he celebrated as the “Tech Right,” a new Silicon Valley-based conservative movement that, among other beliefs, embraces transhumanism and “longtermism.”

The cult of “longtermism” has swept through Silicon Valley in recent years, with Musk and Thiel among its most well-known acolytes. It’s a worldview that often prioritizes the health of future generations of humans — even ones millions of years hence — over people currently living in the here and now, suffering and getting by on planet Earth. (Musk’s goal to colonize Mars, for example, is a longtermist project.)

Its adherents are often obsessed with IQ scores and scientific racism, and the famous computer scientist Timnit Gebru has criticized longtermism as “eugenics under a different name.”

The scholar Émile Torres has also noted that longtermism’s “transhumanist vision of creating a superior new race of ‘posthumans’ is eugenics on steroids,” a recapitulation of 20th-century beliefs that ushered in “a wide range of illiberal policies, including restrictions on immigration, anti-miscegenation laws and forced sterilizations.”

It’s maybe unsurprising, then, that Hanania has emerged as a scribe for this new “Tech Right.” After all, he had years of practice writing about eugenics as Richard Hoste, advocating for precisely those types of policies.

“The maintenance of the quality of the population requires not just a stable population at all levels but the active weeding out of the unfit,” Hoste wrote in 2011 for Counter-Currents, the white supremacist site.

“There is no rational reason,” he wrote, “why eugenics can’t capture the hearts and minds of policy makers the way it did 100 years ago.”

New grift, same as the old grift.

The rational reason to reject eugenics is, of course, that we know where it led when it captured “the hearts and minds of policy makers” over a century ago: to suffering and death and a world where an asshole like Hanania can thrive.

P.S. I neglected to mention that another important rung on the racist grift ladder is publishing in Quillette. You will not be surprised to learn that Claire Lehman, the creepy mastermind behind Quillette, still supports Hanania.

Benefits are benefits, no matter how odious the circumstances

Oh, Florida — you would be such a lovely state if you weren’t poisonously rich in Republicans. They’re putting together new history teaching standards.

The state’s curriculum standards for the African-American Studies course say students will learn how slaves developed skills which, in some instances, could be applied for their personal benefit.

I would have turned that around and said that slavers exploited the skilled labor of slaves, but hey, that’s the South for you.

Some people find that objectionable.

“Please table this rule and revise it to make sure that my history our history is being told factually and completely, and please do not, for the love of God, tell kids that slavery was beneficial because I guarantee you it most certainly was not,” said Kevin Parker, a community member.

Though the public testimony period lasted over an hour, most of the people objected to the adoption of the standard, with supporters of it waving from their seats. Paul Burns, the chancellor of K-12 public schools, defended the standards, denying that they referred to slavery as beneficial.

Oh no, it does not say that slavery was beneficial, only that there were benefits to being enslaved. That’s some mighty fine parsing of the language. I’m impressed.

OK, what if I suggest that people voting Republican should be automatically seized and sold into slavery? They could learn some beneficial attitudes, like empathy and tolerance. I hear that slavery does have some benefits, you know. They must really believe that or they wouldn’t say it.

If not slavery, how about just denying them the right to vote or run for office? See, I can compromise!

How to make the medical establishment very angry

Just publish the truth about their history.

During the mid-nineteenth century, medical schools embraced a white supremacist belief in black inferiority and subhumanness. Racism was a social sport upper-class men played to solidify a professional identity rooted in whiteness (figure 1). These heinous ‘educational’ activities included torturing enslaved black people with ‘experiments’, graverobbing their bodies from cemeteries and attempting to detect whether they were faking illness while torturing them as ‘treatment’ (Willoughby 2016). This white supremacy persisted long after legalised slavery ended. The 1910 Flexner Report closed five of the seven black medical schools, preventing 35 000 black physicians from graduating in subsequent decades, amidst deadly black–white health inequities (Campbell et al. 2020). The American Medical Association (AMA) sanctioned this disregard for humanity, banning black physicians from local AMA chapters through the 1960s, thereby denying licensing, board certification and hospital privileges (Baker et al. 2008). This anti-black racism was nothing new. During the early twentieth century, organised medicine cultivated a symbiotic relationship with the Ku Klux Klan, promoting its white supremacist conceptions of race, gender, and sexuality and their related violence (Antonovich 2021). White psychiatrists diagnosed black men protesting during the Civil Rights movement with a dangerous ‘protest psychosis’. Pathologising black people’s resistance to oppression while normalising white people’s violently oppressive behaviour is a long historical arc. It is reflected in diagnoses like drapetomania from the mid-nineteenth century and the overdiagnosis of conduct disorder in racially minoritised children today (Metzl 2010).

That photo is genuinely horrible and shameful. The account is true, every word, and damning. Yet the article that was from triggered outrage from medical institutions. It shouldn’t. I like this comment from Dr Brandy Schillace, about how they should respond:

That’s how we build. That’s how we have real conversation and community. There is amazing relief, Grace, growth, in admitting we are wrong AND acknowledging that the wrong has deeply hurt others. Then both apology and amendment will be genuine, and accepted as such.