Same stuff, new name.
Monday, August 23, 2004
Can't come up with something original? Why don't you just rehash what everyone else is saying, but call it something different. This is what happens in John Sperling's The Great Divide: Retro vs. Metro America. Instead of coming up with new ideas on politics in America, Sperling merely says what every other Pro-Democrat writer in America says. The only difference: instead of saying liberal, he says Metro and instead of saying conservative, he says Retro.
In taking a stab at some form of credibility, there is a Dupometer on the books web site. This "test" is supposed to see what your political gullibility is. The only test it provides is whether or not you can spew up everything that any liberal has said in the past decade. For instance, the first question on the Dupometer is about higher education:
"Preferential treatment is given to minority students for college admission through affirmative action, and there is no preferential treatment given to white students. True or false?"The answer on the site is false. The reasoning behind this is "The practice of giving preference to alumni, known as 'legacies,' is legal and widespread." Now, they could have stopped their and left partisanship out of it, but no. It goes on: "The Bush family receives legacy admissions at Yale - George Bush, Sr., George W. Bush, and daughter Barbara Bush are all graduates." Just because something is logically true, does not inherently make it factually true. (A lesson that Michael Moore needs to learn.) Yes, some universities do engage in "legacy" admissions in which students whose parent(s) attended said university are granted admissions to that university. What the people at RetrovsMetro.org are not telling you is that:
- Most of the universities that have "legacy" admissions are private institutions.
- Regardless of the institution or applicant, there is no one factor in giving students admissions. (The exception to this is the Texas Top 10% Law.)
- More schools engage in affirmative action than have "legacy" admissions.
- "Legacies" are only considered after "all other things being equal" in the applicant.
One of the other questions on the Dupometer that pissed me off is the one on economics. The question was:
"Shopping at Wal-Mart saves consumers money due to their 'Always Low Prices.'True or False?"Again the answer on the site is False. Their reasoning: "Though Wal-Mart's appeal is its low prices, costs are passed on to consumers in other ways. A recent congressional study has determined that a Wal-Mart store with 200 employees costs taxpayers $420,750 per year for social services delivered to its $8.23-per-hour employees." Since they obviously couldn't be bothered to explain themselves, I looked through the chapter that pertained to this question. The "social services" that they refer to are in that "society is again picking up part of the tab by having to provide unemployment and other benefits to workers whose jobs have been shipped overseas." Stop the presses, we have a page-one headline here. Taxpayers have to pay for unemployment when workers lose their jobs? No! Say it isn't so! But guess what? That's true for every other job. There is nothing special about Wal-Mart in this regard. Wal-Mart hires people, just like any other company.
Part of me wishes that these people would stop writing stuff that is so easy to disprove with facts, but another part of me is appreciative of the easy fodder for my posts. However, please try to come up with something original.
Posted byJ. R. Guinness at 9:20 AM