The Unz Review: An Alternative Media Selection
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
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Have you ever noticed how many policemen and firemen will stand up in court and swear that they, personally, are the world's biggest wimps when it comes to suffering endless horrors from psychologically "hostile work environments" down at the station? They make associate feminist studies professors seem stoic. Mostly, of course, it's black cops and... Read More
From the Chicago Sun-Times (thanks to the readers who sent this in):Police may scrap entrance exam'OPEN UP THE PROCESS' | Union chief: It's 'too stupid to be true'BY FRAN SPIELMAN AND FRANK MAIN, Staff ReportersThe Chicago Police Department is seriously considering scrapping the police entrance exam to bolster minority hiring, save millions on test preparation... Read More
The opponents of politicians naturally assume that everything they speak or publish was written for them by professional writers. Until I visited the Reagan Library for the first time in the late 1990s, for instance, I had simply gone along with the conventional wisdom that President Reagan was an actor reading other people's lines. The... Read More
In Slate, Stanford law professor Richard Thompson Ford is trumpeting:UPDATED: Fortunately, the test scores were posted by, and we can figure out who Briscoe is pretty easily.Actually, Briscoe did very badly on the written test in any sense. Although he scored a 92.08 on the oral test, he only scored a 59 on the... Read More
Last week's federal district court ruling in Vulcan Society v. New York throwing out the written tests used to hire some of the 343 firemen who died on 9/11 should be taken to the Supreme Court posthaste, before Clarence Thomas keels over and Obama replaces him with, say, Henry Louis Gates's lawyer Charles Ogletree. (To... Read More
You can read what the two discriminated-against firemen had to say here. (Vargas's testimony is toward the bottom here.)It sure would have been better theatre to have plain-spoken witnesses like these guys testify first before the Senators and Sotomayor plunged into the legalistic thickets.And here's today cross-examination of Sotomayor by Sen. Kyl, who pretty much... Read More
is now up at published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer
Here's a National Journal article by Stuart Taylor on how Sotomayor and two other judges almost got away with making the Ricci case disappear without their ten fellow judges on the Second Circuit hearing about it. Sotomayor's old mentor, Jose Cabranes, read about it in his local New Haven newspaper and blew his stack at... Read More
At the heart of the Ricci case, which Judge Sonia Sotomayor attempted to bury so that it couldn't be appealed when she heard it by upholding the lower court's anti-Ricci decision without an opinion (outraging her mentor Judge Jose Cabranes), is the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's Four-Fifths Rule.This regulation says that on any employment test,... Read More
From the New York Times:This one sentence is the most interesting part of the op-ed: Sturm und Guinier give away the hushed up fact that "civil rights" -- as currently understood by, say, Sonia Sotomayor -- is an assault on America's once proud tradition of civil service reforms.As you'll recall, when a disappointed government job-seeker... Read More
My new column about the Sotomayor hearings scheduled to start on Monday are up.Once again, my best suggestion for dramatizing Ricci v. DeStefano is for the Republican senators to call Mayor John DeStefano of New Haven as a hostile witness.The witness lists released today includes Frank Ricci and Ben Vargas, the Hispanic plaintiff in... Read More
Although there are still pockets of injustice in America, such as those blue collar families in the New Haven area who keep minorities down by encouraging and instructing their own sons in the study of how best to rescue people from burning buildings, it's heart-warming to see that a complete outsider like Emily Bazelon can... Read More
Prominent man of letters Walter Kirn writes an essay in the New York Times Magazine "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Aptitude," in which he explains (to the extent that "explain" can be used to characterize his effort):1. He wants you to know that he got very high SAT scores, which helped get him into... Read More
Here's an old column I wrote in for Taki's Magazine on May 20, 2009, that I forgot to post a link to because I was traveling: Following up on Jared Taylor’s article, the Ricci reverse discrimination lawsuit now before the Supreme Court is not one of those “hard cases” about which law students are warned.... Read More
As Justice Alito's concurring opinion in Ricci documented in amusing detail, Frank Ricci and colleagues were the victims of blatant racial discrimination by a black power broker and his allied white mayor in New Haven.Stanford Law Professor Richard Thompson Ford says, that, well, equal protection of the laws isn't the point of civil rights legislation.... Read More
That Justice Ginsburg's dissent in Ricci managed to get four out of nine votes points out major flaws in both American intellectual life and in the Supreme Court.Some of what's wrong with the Supreme Court is structural. Justices used to drop dead of heart attacks before they aged too far into mental decline. By this... Read More
Traditionally, the New York Times has the world's worst Letters-to-the-Editor page, filled with credentialed but clueless poohbahs writing in to say how much they agree with the NYT's soporific editorials, but they were disappointed that the editorial didn't include some additional argument so dumb that not even the NYT Editorial board would fall for it.It... Read More
The Ricci reactions have made more evident that liberals are peeved that anybody takes seriously all that language in the civil rights laws about equal protection. In the liberal mind, the specific wording of the laws was just a sham to get them approved. The laws are really simply about "Who? Whom?" Thus, the idea... Read More
Michael Barone has a good column today on Ricci, Firefighter case shows seamy side of racial politics, which is clearly drawn from my stuff. Considering all the mean things I said about him a number of years ago, it's big of him to be a reader.My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer
Half Sigma offers a lucid review of Justice Ginsburg's dissenting opinion in Ricci: Instead of rejoicing over the outcome of the Ricci case, the fact that four justices signed on to GInsubrg’s dissenting opinion fills me with both anger at liberals and dread that the liberal viewpoint will eventually triumph over reason and sensibility. Ginsburg... Read More
The ignorance and just plain dumbness of the purveyors of conventional wisdom is one of the most obvious lessons of the Ricci case. They got drubbed in the Supreme Court decision in large part because they don't know anything about topics like testing and couldn't think rationally about it even if they did.Consider this statement... Read More
Something worth thinking about is the valuable role the firefighter's union in New Haven played in keeping the politicians from getting their hands all over the fire department. It was the union that had negotiated the compromise by which 60% of the weight would be given to a written test (i.e., objective and blind-graded), while... Read More
to be both boring and revealing at the same time. In Slate today, Bazelon writes:Read that twice.(As a commenter suggested, is it really strange that a guy named Frank Ricci is laying claim to the central message of the Collected Works of Sylvester Stallone?)"Who? Whom?" That's all the mainstream media thinks about.My published articles are... Read More
The concurring opinion in the Ricci v. DeStefano case (won by Ricci on a 5-4 vote) by Justice Sam Alito, with Thomas and Scalia supporting, attacks the trustworthiness of Ginsburg's retelling of the Ricci story in her dissent.The funny thing is how much juicier Alito's Supreme Court opinion is than that 5000 word article by... Read More
Swing Justice Anthony Kennedy's majority opinion is fairly narrow, yet broader and braver than my prediction that he'd merely send it back down for retrial on the facts. It's a sizable defeat for the Obama Administration and their Supreme Court nominee.Perhaps the most striking element of Kennedy's majority opinion is that he never portrays this... Read More
Here's a teaser from my new column on Monday's upcoming Ricci Supreme Court decision:Bazelon apparently doesn’t know that lotteries are exactly what cities such as Chicago are already doing with the results of firefighter tests, in an attempt to comply with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s "Four-Fifths Rule". This regulation puts the burden of... Read More
In on Sunday evening, I'll have a column pointing out the multiple ironies in Slate's 5000 word article last week deploring the excessively objective and lamentably non-random 2003 New Haven fire department test (since discarded, with the approval of Sonia Sotomayor) on which Frank Ricci earned a promotion.In the meantime, here's a great John... Read More
Supposedly, the Supreme Court will announce its decision in Ricci v. DeStefano on Monday.What are your predictions?Also, feel free to make predictions about how the Sotomayor hearings will play out.And if you feel an urgent need to refresh yourself on all the wisdom I've been dispensing on the topics of "Ricci" or "Sotomayor," just click... Read More
When it comes to racial preferences, Barack Obama and Sonia Sotomayor are ideological twins, although most Americans don't realize it yet. Unlike the master politician, however, Sotomayor tends to rub people the wrong way. Still, the Republican Senators are highly unlikely to be able to stop Sotomayor. And it's not clear that they should want... Read More
One of the odder phenomenon is that as political correctness grows, so does that most politically incorrect of businesses, standardized testing. You might think that standardized testing would be a stagnant industry, what with the fact that it would appear to be the classic mature industry -- there haven't been fundamental innovations in testing since... Read More
The root of Obama's Sotomayor Problem is this: Having decided for political reasons that he wanted a female Hispanic who was liberal on affirmative action and not too old and had plausible credentials, Obama then ran into a reality that is unpleasant but was logically inevitable: There just aren't that many Wise Latinas (whether self-proclaimed... Read More
From the New York Times:Judge Sonia Sotomayor once described herself as “a product of affirmative action” who was admitted to two Ivy League schools despite scoring lower on standardized tests than many classmates, which she attributed to “cultural biases” that are “built into testing.” On another occasion, she aligned with conservatives who take a limited... Read More
UPDATE: Greg Cochran says he's offered to make a Julian Simon-Paul Ehrlich-style bet with Nicholas Kristof over whether the ideas offered in Richard Nisbett's book Intelligence and How to Get It will prove true or not. Greg would take the "Not" side.Since a lot of people are visiting from Nicholas D. Kristof's column in the... Read More
Marx defined the ruling class as those who control the means of production. But that seems so 19th Century. Today, the key is to control the terms of discourse.For example, consider how affirmative action largely disappeared as something disussable in polite society in recent years. John McCain had a chance to take it up as... Read More
The Weekly Standard has a transcript of a WSJ link to oral arguments in 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals hearing of the Ricci case:KAREN LEE TORRE (lawyer for Ricci et al): I think a fundamental failure is the application of these concepts to this job as if these men were garbage collectors. This is a... Read More
... can be found here.Thanks to everybody who pointed out my mistake.My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer
One of the odd side effects of the Ricci case is that it continues to inspire a lot of watery commentary about me.For example, Tyler Cowen blogs on Marginal Revolution:In other words, this post is going to be about a straw man.If anybody is actually interested in what I have had to say about IQ... Read More
Yesterday's Slate article on Sonia Sotomayor and the Ricci case was so clueless that Slate is back today with a better informed article on the case by a Stanford law prof:Well, that's one way of putting it.Another way of putting it is that there isn't
Emily Bazelon writes in Slate:Actually, Ricci is a easy race case with simple facts -- a representative example of how Title VII routinely works. It's only a hard case if your goal is to somehow, someway, preserve the dominant "disparate impact" concept.Something that hasn't been me
The lead plaintiff in the New Haven firemen's reverse discrimination case, Ricci et al v. DeStefano, is famously Frank Ricci. He was presumably picked out by their lawyers to be the face of the case because, I assume, he's a good guy with a good record and a human interest story about his being dyslexic.... Read More
John McWhorter writes at The New course, the question we are not supposed to ask is whether the failure rate suggests that black people are less intelligent. However, there is no need to fear here. The reason black people of unaffluent origin tend not to do well on standardized tests is a matter of... Read More
In "The Case for Colorblindness in the Age of Genetics," William Saletan responds to a John McWhorter post in The New Republic entitled "Lions and Sailers and Bears, Oh My!--Why Saletan Thinks We Should Keep the Black-White Performance Gap Under Wraps."Saletan writes:McWhorter casually dismisses the less-intelligence theory and its blogger-advocate Steve Sailer, with whom I... Read More
From Slate:On Thursday, I raised a question about the Times story:On Friday, Steve Sailer, the founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute, responded to my question. He argued that I was wrong to propose to "stop counting" scores by race: The reason people all over the world and of all different ideologies can't help but be... Read More
A recent study showed that IQ and similar tests were highly useful at predicting who would make it through a year-long truck driving training course. In comments, though, several of my readers (who tend not to be deficient in IQ) pointed to their own troubles during their abortive truck driving careers, which usually involved backing... Read More
From my new column:Last week, the Ricci reverse discrimination case came up before the Supreme Court for oral questioning. A lawyer representing the New Haven firemen—who are suing the city for refusing to promote them for the last half decade because zero blacks passed the 2003 promotional exams—was grilled by the liberal justices. The... Read More
Here's an excerpt from my article on the Ricci Supreme Court case: Frank Ricci is the lead plaintiff of a group of New Haven, Connecticut firemen (17 whites and one Hispanic) who took the city’s fire department promotion test in late 2003 and earned advancement to the rank of lieutenant or captain. No blacks... Read More
I've written for a massive article (about 2,800 words) that I think is one of my more interesting ones yet. The topic is the most important Supreme Court case of the year, Ricci, the New Haven firemen's reverse discrimination lawsuit. No fireman in New Haven has been promoted in the last five years because... Read More
Steve Sailer
About Steve Sailer

Steve Sailer is a journalist, movie critic for Taki's Magazine, columnist, and founder of the Human Biodiversity discussion group for top scientists and public intellectuals.

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