Posted tagged ‘Firing Line’

The ‘Disparate Impact’ Racket by Thomas Sowell

March 18, 2015

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell takes a look at the two reports about the Ferguson Missouri shooting of Micheal Brown, issued by Eric Holder’s Justice Department, in this article titled, The ‘Disparate Impact’ Racket.

In the article Dr. Sowell talks about the difference between the hard evidence and facts used in the first report that proved Brown was in the wrong, and the “sweeping assumptions” and “misleading statistics” used to condemn the Ferguson Police Department as racist in the second report.

Here are some excerpts from the article.

“According to the second report, law enforcement in Ferguson has a “disparate impact” on blacks and is “motivated” by “discriminatory intent”.”
“Like many other uses of “disparate impact” statistics, the Justice Department’s evidence against the Ferguson police department consists of numbers showing that the percentage of people stopped by police or fined in court is larger than the percentage of blacks in the local population.”

“The implicit assumption is that such statistics about particular outcomes would normally reflect the percentage of people in the population. But, no matter how plausible this might seem on the surface, it is seldom found in real life, and those who use that standard are seldom, if ever, asked to produce hard evidence that it is factually correct, as distinct from politically correct.”

“Blacks are far more statistically “over-represented” among basketball stars in the NBA than among people stopped by police in Ferguson. Hispanics are similarly far more “over-represented” among baseball stars than in the general population. Asian Americans are likewise far more “over-represented” among students at leading engineering schools like M.I.T. and Cal Tech than in the population as a whole.”

“None of this is peculiar to the United States. You can find innumerable examples of such group disparities in countries around the world and throughout recorded history.

“Even with things whose outcomes are not in human hands, “disparate impact” is common. Men are struck by lightning several times as often as women. Most of the tornadoes in the entire world occur in the middle of the United States.”

“Since the population of Ferguson is 67 percent black, the greatest possible “over-representation” of blacks among those stopped by police or fined by courts is 50 percent. That would not make the top 100 disparities in the United States or the top 1,000 in the world.

THE MYTH OF PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION

Here is a video of a younger Dr. Sowell addressing statistical disparities with host William F. Buckley on Firing Line.

The “Equal Pay Day” Canard

April 9, 2014

Thomas Sowell

I have read Thomas Sowell’s analysis concerning this topic since I stumbled upon his writings in 1995. I thought he had driven as stake through the heart of  “the gender pay gap” myth. I wasn’t going to post anything about this topic, but reading and listening to the news this week has changed my mind. Since I couldn’t possibly cover this topic as authoritatively or as eloquently as Thomas Sowell, I’m not even going to try. I’m going to let him do it in his own words.

QUOTE FROM THOMAS SOWELL’S ‘KNOWLEDGE AND DECISIONS’

Here is an excerpt from my favorite book, Knowledge and Decision, which Dr. Sowell wrote in 1980:

“With women the key variable is marriage. Even before “affirmative action” quotas, women in their thirties who worked continuously since high school earned slightly more than men in their thirties who worked continuously since high school. In the academic world, where many discrimination charges have been filed under affirmative action, female academics earned slightly more than male academics when neither were married  – again even before “affirmative action” – and unmarried female Ph.D.’s who received their degrees in the 1930’s and 1940’s became full professors in the 1950’s to a slightly greater extent than did unmarried male Ph.D’s of the same vintage. In short, the male-female differences in incomes and occupations are largely differences between married women and all other persons….the clear-cut income parity (or better) among women who never married suggests once again that systemic variables have more to do with the statistics than the intentional decisions at the work place at which the statistics were collected.”

He wrote this in 1980 so it’s safe to say that the gender pay gap canard was used as a political bludgeon for many years prior to 1980.

THOMAS SOWELL ON FIRING LINE

Dr Sowell is discussing the gender pay gap issue in this video from 1981.

Click, Firing Line – Thomas Sowell  w/ William Buckley Jr. 1981, to watch the whole show.

 THOMAS SOWELL ARTICLE “THE REAL WAR ON WOMEN”

Here is an article by Thomas Sowell titled, The Real ‘War On Women’. It was written in 2012, and covers the same gender pay gap fallacy. Here are some excerpts form the article.

“The old — and repeatedly discredited — game of citing women’s incomes as some percentage of men’s incomes is being played once again, as part of the “war on women” theme.”

“When you compare women and men in the same occupations with the same skills, education, hours of work, and many other factors that go into determining pay, the differences in incomes shrink to the vanishing point — and, in some cases, the women earn more than comparable men.”

“But why let mere facts spoil the emotional rhetoric or the political ploys to drum up hysteria and collect votes?”

THOMAS SOWELL ON ‘UNCOMMON KNOWLEDGE

Here is a video of Thomas Sowell in 2008 on,Uncommon Knowledge, with Peter Robinson, talking about Gender Bias and Income Equality.

QUOTE FROM THOMAS SOWELL’S ‘ECONOMIC FACTS AND FALLACIES’

In Economic Facts And Fallacies, Chapter 3 titled, Male-Female Facts And Fallacies, covers gender pay gap and much more. Here is an excerpt form the chapter.

“Even when women and men earn the same incomes in the same occupations, differences in the distribution of the sexes among different occupations lead to differences in their average incomes.

“In principle it does not matter whether the attorney is male or female but, in practice, with women more often than men carrying the burden of domestic responsibilities for children and the care of the home, careers that involve much unpredictable night and weekend work are less attractive to women. Having it all – a career and a family and an upscale lifestyle- is fine but doing it all is often harder for a woman, given the usual division of domestic responsibilities between the sexes and the inevitable differences in childbearing.”

“Moreover since men are never pregnant, women are disadvantaged in such work by the physical limitations of pregnancy, which can be work limitations as well in obs that require long, irregular and unpredictable hours,….”

Related ArticleThe New, Old, Buzz Words, “Income Inequality”, at austrianaddict.com.

Related ArticleIncome Inequality II: Increase The Minimum Wage, at austrianaddict.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thomas Sowell, Human Capital More Important Than Physical Capital.

March 11, 2013

Thomas Sowell discusses the effect of foreign aid on human capital in the countries receiving it in this interview with William F. Buckley on his show Firing Line. It is from his book “The Economics And Politics Of Race”, written in 1983, (a book I highly recommend). If foreign aid affects human capital in the countries who receive it, how much does our bloated welfare system, and Government regulations affect the human capital of our own country today?

Quotes from the video about foreign aid, “..you are simply transferring the wealth that has already been created, but you are not transferring the ability to create that wealth……too often in foreign aid you are rewarding people for doing all the wrong things….you are subsidising irresponsibility.

Physical capital is the tools, machines, and infrastructure used to produce goods and services, which in turn increases the wealth of a country. Human capital is the knowledge and skills needed to maintain and increase this physical capital stock. (more…)