Lew Rockwell "What Exactly Is Racism"? 2014

Posted by $ brightwriter 3 months, 3 weeks ago to Politics
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Not new, but a good and thorough assessment of modern social pathology regarding mandated conformity and the suppression of dissent.
SOURCE URL: https://www.lewrockwell.com/2014/07/lew-rockwell/what-exactly-is-racism/


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  • Posted by ewv 3 months, 2 weeks ago
    Rockwell begins his essay on racism by asserting "I doubt anyone really knows what it is" and circles around in search of a definition without ever landing on one, concluding that one must "shun the state" and its "language". This is typical a-philosophical libertarianism attempting to invoke politics as the base in philosophical issues.

    Ayn Rand explained racism in terms of its essentials, opening the chapter "Racism" in The Virtue of Selfishness with:

    "Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism. It is the notion of ascribing moral, social or political significance to a man's genetic lineage—the notion that a man's intellectual and characterological traits are produced and transmitted by his internal body chemistry. Which means, in practice, that a man is to be judged, not by his own character and actions, but by the characters and actions of a collective of ancestors." https://ari.aynrand.org/issues/govern...

    The essay continues to explain and discuss racism, its implications, and implementation in depth. From this the leftist fallacies in calling everyone they don't like a "racist" while advocating racist policies themselves are clear.

    She later built on that in her discussion of "ethnicity" in her 1977 Ford Hall Forum lecture "Global Balkanization" https://courses.aynrand.org/campus-co...

    " 'Ethnicity' is an anti-concept, used as a disguise for the word 'racism' — and it has no clearly definable meaning. . . . The term “ethnicity” stresses the traditional, rather than the physiological characteristics of a group, such as language — but physiology, i.e., race, is involved . ... So the advocacy of “ethnicity,” means racism plus tradition — i.e., racism plus conformity—i.e., racism plus staleness"

    The entire discussion of ethnicity was reissued as the chapter "Global Balkanization" in The New Left: The Anti-Industrial Revolution (expanded 1999 2nd edition entitled The Return of the Primitive: The Anti-Industrial Revolution) and also in The Voice of Reason: Essays in Objectivist Thought.

    This is especially important with the continuing rise of "ethnicity" and racism today.
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  • Posted by term2 3 months, 2 weeks ago
    I could care less what race a person belongs to (given also that today most people are mixed races actually). But I do care what their cultural ideas they have absorbed, and I do discrimminate based on those. So call me a culturist of sorts.

    I dont like entitlement and want little to do with any entitled people. Unfortunately, a lot of blacks (since Obama) consider themselves entitled, and act that way. Of course not ALL blacks are entitled, but its one of the traits that is pretty obvious and is grounds for me to not deal with them. There are people of other social groups who are entitled too, and I have learned to pick out that trait pretty quickly and stay away from them too. The leftists would call me racist of course (whatever that means...).
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    • Posted by ewv 3 months, 2 weeks ago
      Of course leftists would call you racist for rejecting tribalist entitlement -- they denounce everyone as "racist", especially if you reject their own racism.

      The "cultural" factor mixed with racism was addressed by Ayn Rand in "Global Balkanization" referred to on this same page https://www.galtsgulchonline.com/post...

      The rise in "ethnicity" mongering by the left and spreading from there on top of the left's fallacies calling others racist while practicing it themselves is important to understand. Ayn Rand spotted it as a major trend and analyzed it over 40 years ago. Her earlier analysis of racism is fundamental, but not enough to understand the full ethnicity movement.
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  • Posted by freedomforall 3 months, 3 weeks ago
    Thanks for posting this, brightwriter.
    It led me to the review of Conceived in Liberty, Volume 5: The New Republic.
    I hadn't realized it was available. I already own the earlier 4 volumes.
    👍
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    • Posted by ewv 3 months, 2 weeks ago
      I hadn't known that there was a fifth volume either. It turns out that he had left it mostly in hand-written rough draft form, which has recently been edited and published.

      It is available as https://www.amazon.com/Conceived-Libe...

      Free downloads for pdf, epub and an audio book are at https://mises.org/library/conceived-l...

      The first four volumes were informative and interesting, but one has to ignore the occasional pleadings for anarchism and the repetitive 'Indian good -- white man bad' revisionism. The preface by Napolitano in the new 5th volume indicates that it has its own problems, but it looks like it is worth reading for the history apart from his evaluations.
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      • Posted by freedomforall 3 months, 2 weeks ago
        The review indicates the book includes Rothbard's criticism of the Hamiltonian faction (federalists) who insisted on a constitution with a bigger stronger central government. imo, the Articles of Confederation were better protection for individual liberty and Rothbard's criticism is valid in that respect.

        The book is also available via Mises Bookstore https://store.mises.org/Hardcover-P11...
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        • Posted by ewv 3 months, 2 weeks ago
          The link you found is less expensive at $20 vs amazon's $24.80 for the hard cover. An amazon order is eligible for free shipping for a total order over $25 but amazon also routinely now charges tax. The Mises bookstore seems to not charge shipping at all. I didn't see if they charge tax. The amazon $3.99 for kindle is also more than the Mises free pdf and epub.

          The Article of Confederation were non-functional and incapable of protecting individual rights, as is Rothbard's anarchism. The states were very mixed, and without the Federal Bil of Rights they would have become much worse than they already are. That doesn't condone Hamilton's statism and doesn't mean that the Constitution couldn't have been better.
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          • Posted by freedomforall 3 months, 2 weeks ago
            Mises does charge shipping. The hardcover shipping is about $4 media mail (slow).
            The Articles apparently didn't allow central government much taxation and that prevented growth of government. I'll have to read the book before I can converse on the Articles.
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            • Posted by ewv 3 months, 2 weeks ago
              Further limiting taxation would have been good -- along with more emphatically limiting what government could do, especially in denying eminent domain and the future assumed regulatory powers. A functional problem with the Articles of Confederation was that the Federal government lacked the power to implement its own national functions, including foreign policy. And limiting Federal powers is not enough -- state statism is just as bad.

              Rothbard may have something in particular interesting to say in assessing this, but remember that his standards are anarchism.
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  • Posted by Owlsrayne 3 months, 2 weeks ago
    The Left has over-played the Racist card. They are causing a severe division in the US. They are politically trying to destroy those of us who are of European heritage at the same time denying their own European ancestry. They are hypocrites! I'm proud of my own ancestry which I still research.
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    • Posted by ewv 3 months, 2 weeks ago
      We may think the left has "overplayed" it race accusations, to say the least, but they are simply following their own ideology. The source of the division in this country is philosophical, not superficial playing of "cards".

      The left is promoting ethnicity and tribalism on principle, as discussed in Ayn Rand's "Global Balkanization" https://www.galtsgulchonline.com/post...

      Their collectivist anti-concept of 'racism' is anything that rejects their own ethnic collectivism -- If you reject their racism because you oppose all racism on principle, they regard that as an attack on their race-ethnic collectivist entitlements.

      They don't deny the country's predominantly European ancestry -- they condemn it, elevating it in importance as a hostile tribe.

      But 'ancestry' is not a legitimate source of pride. You made yourself through your own thinking and choices. Your ancestors didn't do that for you whether they were good or evil. They did not determine what you are, which is a racist concept. Neither did you determine what they were as a reason to feel pride in them. There is only a biological connection. You can find it interesting to explore your ancestral background, but it's not something be "proud" of.
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  • Posted by $ blarman 3 months, 2 weeks ago
    Very nice post. Thanks for sharing!

    If one wants more discussion on equality, I highly recommend Thomas Sowell's "The Quest for Cosmic Justice"
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    • Posted by ewv 3 months, 2 weeks ago
      The topic of the thread is the concept of racism, with a side topic of a history book on the earliest years of the country, not "cosmic justice" and "equality". Ayn Rand gave the best analysis of racism. Rockwell's essay is very poor. https://www.galtsgulchonline.com/post...
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      • Posted by ewv 3 months, 2 weeks ago
        And so we see the cowardly jerk systematically 'downvoting' my posts again with no response of his own.

        If Blarman had something to say about why he thinks his pronouncement on "equality" and an undefined "cosmic justice" are relevant and what he thinks about them he could have written it. He could have also attempted to explain why he thinks Rockwell's wandering essay concluding that the answer to an undefined racism is to "shun the state" and its "language" is good. Blarman's word is not authority.

        He has previously demanded that I not respond to his posts on this public forum and tried to have me banned. He is a religious conservative hostile to Ayn Rand and has no interest in her ideas.
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  • Posted by preimert1 3 months, 2 weeks ago
    A PC conundrum arises when someone calls another person--who happens to be black--an asshole. Is it just an every day reaction to a grievance, or an actionable hate crime?

    If one accepts the proposition that "Good neighbors come in all colors", then it would seem that the proposition "Assholes come in all colors" is true as well. So how to best respond to an every day act of "ass-holiness" committed by a black person without being accused of "racism" and perhaps being censured and/or losing ones position or tenure? To bite one's tongue and not respond would not only be physically, but would amount to condecention--which itself an act of crypto-racism!

    I believe that perception of what constituts "hate"is in the eyes and ears of the beholder. How would a "reasonable and prudent person" perceive it?
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    • Posted by ewv 3 months, 2 weeks ago
      Hate may be mistaken or not, and based on valid standards or not, but 'hate' itself is a valid concept, not subjective in "the eyes of the beholder".

      But that does not make it a subject for government control over so-called "hate crimes". It is a form of freedom of thought and expression. The idea of "hate crime" is an anti-concept with no validity. Crimes are violations of rights, not what someone holds in his head or says, whether or not he actually commits a crime through his actions in accordance with hate.
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  • Posted by $ 25n56il4 3 months, 2 weeks ago
    Term2. I agree with you. it is actually silly in this day and age to be clinging to 'our heritage'. My grandchildren are now mixed races. Guess what? I love them all. I have Hispanic darlings. My grandmother was a full-blood American Indian and my father was a half-breed. My mother was Ashkenazi. We are all Americans aren't we? I have Chinese cousins.
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  • Posted by $ Olduglycarl 3 months, 2 weeks ago
    Race, or a particular type of species, requires in my mind, totally different attributes...like a Chicken verses a dog...that to me is the differences that must be present in order to divide the two into races or different species.

    So, is there a subset of the human species with that kind of difference?...No, there is not.
    Are there groups of humans that look a little different...yes, of course...but those differences are not enough to demand a separation between the two.

    Yes, I know, the leftest, the idiots, those prejudice against anyone different from them, have constructed a different meaning, standard, definition, than what the real concept of race denotes.

    We can't use a country, region or culture as a defining difference worthy of separation either...unless one is ignorant...which they are, nor are they self aware, either.

    So, I have a better term but it wouldn't bother me one bit if you chose the use the designation, "different race" instead of Entity; because I refer to the most important difference within the human species is Conscience, those that have or could have, versus those that don't have a snowballs chance in hell of ever having a conscience.

    Conscious Humans and parasitical humanoids are the only divisions I recognize.
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  • Posted by $ pixelate 3 months, 2 weeks ago
    I have recently started to share my understanding of race and IQ during polite conversation. Some folks recoil that I am even mentioning this. Others call me a blatant racist. My response "so what?" ZFG. I subscribe to the school of Jared Taylor -- I am a race realist.
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    • Posted by ewv 3 months, 2 weeks ago
      It's not realistic to ascribe moral, social, political attributes of any individual as due to biology. That is racism. Different people have different inherent mental capacities from birth, but no average tells you what an individual has, and what an individual does within his capacities is up to him.
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      • Posted by $ pixelate 3 months, 2 weeks ago
        Agree, no average tells you what an individual has in terms of abilities, but that bell curve makes me rather selective. I presently hang out with lots of East Asians -- the stereo-types fit: smart, assertive, ambitious, rich. We partake in mountain climbing, remote trekking gigs and joyful dinner parties. I never have to explain basics in argument or logic... upper-tail of the bell curve these folks ... most have technical / engineering careers. They reciprocate and enjoy my company -- birds of a feather in our actions, irrespective of race.

        As for individuals -- I have been engaged in an online dialog, over the past three years, with a guy from Lagos, Nigeria. He is from an affluent family in the Igbo tribe. His father had three wives and he is the eldest son. In his own words, he described Nigeria as one of the most intellectually devoid and corrupt hell-holes on earth. He is forever grateful for the civilizing influence provided by Western Europeans in context of building cities and developing the petroleum industry. These are his observations shared in the general forum of our online discussion group as well as personal messages. He recently invested 10 years in the United States and Canada in various universities. Then he began looking for work ... now I have never met this guy, but based on our interchanges over the years, we came to know each other quite well. I tried to get him a job with my company. He even got in the front door with an interview. He did not get the job. He is presently working on becoming a successful author (novels). In summary, I judge individuals based on the expressed content of their character. Funny twist in this story -- it was this Igbo man from Nigeria who introduced me to Jared Taylor (Labelled "white supremacist" on Wikipedia) and American Renaissance.
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        • Posted by ewv 3 months, 2 weeks ago
          There is a lot more to finding the kind of individuals you want to associate with who have good character, common values, particular knowledge and interests, etc. than bell curves from form tests purporting to measure intelligence. There is no such thing as a "race realist". The people you fortunately found and like to associate with who happened to be east Asian and the Nigerian are not related to that. Calling racism "race realism" does not excuse racism.
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          • Posted by $ pixelate 3 months, 1 week ago
            Of course there exists Race Realists. Race is Real. Race Exists. Reality Exists. Peanut butter and jelly! Put them together and you get Race Realist. Do you really have a tough time differentiating between a Pygmy and a Western European? That bell curve very simply and beautifully illustrates why Africa and Haiti are brazenly high-fertility, corruption-plagued hell-holes and why Ashkenazi Jews have earned a vastly disproportionate number of Nobel prizes. It is scarcely the same thing to put a man on the moon as to put a bone in your nose.
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            • Posted by ewv 3 months, 1 week ago
              As Ayn Rand put it, "Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism. It is the notion of ascribing moral, social or political significance to a man's genetic lineage—the notion that a man's intellectual and characterological traits are produced and transmitted by his internal body chemistry. Which means, in practice, that a man is to be judged, not by his own character and actions, but by the characters and actions of a collective of ancestors." -- as cited previously on this page here https://www.galtsgulchonline.com/post...

              Racism does not mean denying that there are inherited physical attributes. Lumping the existence of inherited physical attributes together with valuing or disvaluing people on the base of race as a rationalization for racism is racist. Racism is crude collectivism, not "realistic", and does not become realistic with a crude verbal deflection. There is no such thing as realistic racism, which categorization is nothing more than trying to put a positive "spin" on racism.
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              • Posted by $ pixelate 3 months, 1 week ago
                Well then, by gum, I disagree with Rand... imagine that. Maybe Rand never took a good look at data from the US Bureau of Crime, er, Justice Statistics ... she had a good angle on philosophy, but nobody could accuse her of being a statistician.

                When I encounter someone calling me a Racist, the words are as from a 13-year-old teenage girl (GSRM - Gossip, Shame, Ridicule, Moralize) . . . like a spattering of impotent rain on a granite edifice. Like Roark, I just smile ... very slowly, in a manner of demonstrating ownership... and because I also take joy in seeing the reaction on the girl's face. Like Galt, I am the man with the face without pain or fear or guilt. No thank you, Mister Whitey is not in the market for buying guilt, from anyone. I will be participating in the American Renaissance Conference this spring, and will engage in happy conversation with sundry Race Realists including the founder of AmRen, Jared Taylor.
                Looks like I've come full circle.
                ZFG.
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                • Posted by ewv 3 months, 1 week ago
                  "By gum" is not a rational argument. Of course you disagree with Ayn Rand. She was an individualist who denounced racism, the crudest form of collectivism, as fundamentally irrational and immoral, and you are an avowed racist. So is your guru Jared Taylor.

                  Crime "statistics" do not justify attributing what people choose to do or think to their race, and statistics are not a substitute for philosophy.

                  You are not "like Roark" or "like Galt". Please do not associate yourself and your swaggering, crude collectivist determinism with Ayn Rand's ideas and characters in any way.

                  If you ever want to understand why, read Ayn Rand's explanation in her article "Racism" referred to here several times https://ari.aynrand.org/issues/govern...
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