Saturday, July 31, 2010

Shirley Sherrod, LeBron James and the End of Racism

Shirley Sherrod's speech to the Georgia NAACP Chapter, and the accompanying furor, along with LeBron James hour long special about where he'll play Basketball in the NBA for the next few years, signal the end of Racism. Well, not really. But if not the end, or even the beginning of the end, then certainly, the end of the beginning. With apologies to Winston Churchill. The whole affair signals an end to White guilt, and a discussion of how racist Whites in ways large and small mistreated Blacks (both undeniably true, and in the distant past). In some ways this is healthy, the Civil Rights Era is as distant to us now, as the Jazz Age was to the end of the Civil Rights Era (if you count that as the year 1968). All things must end. But it quite likely that the end of White guilt, or at least the end of the beginning phase of the Civil Rights Movement, will restructure America and how it governs itself in entirely predictable ways, that the elites, commentators, and casual observers will have to actively will not to see.

The full video of the speech is here. You may also find it at the NAACP's website. To be clear, when the NAACP accused the Tea Party Movement (without any documentary evidence) in formal resolutions that the Tea Party Movement was "racist," Andrew Breitbart was sent an edited copy of the video (via mail, on disk) of the Sherrod speech. He asked his source for the full speech, did not get it, and ran the copy that he had, on his website. Making the point that the audience (NAACP members) applauded the bits about discriminating against a White farmer. Andrew Breitbart DID NOT EDIT THE VIDEO, he merely ran the only video copy he had, and next to the video asked for members of the public to send him a copy of the full speech so he could post it. Which indeed, he has.

Meanwhile, Cleveland fans found little reason to live once LeBron James announced (in a one hour national TV special) that he was playing for Miami's Heat:

Both incidents mark the end of White guilt and racism. A Black President and a Black professional athlete (referred to on ESPN's Sportscenter non-jokingly as "King James") commanding the highest elected office in the land and tens of millions of dollars per year, respectively, along with the fixed television attention of a nation, nationally, belies the idea of a racist White America that deserves to be punished for past sins. At least, one could feel for Cleveland fans. They live, in or around Cleveland, after all. These guys put it perfectly: click here [The guys disabled embedding, but watch it, truly hilarious. "At least we're not Detroit!"]

Let us be clear. News accounts state that Sherrod's father was shot to death by a White Farmer in 1965, over a dispute regarding ownership of disputed cows. The jury did not indict the farmer who shot her father. It is not suprising for Sherrod to harbor racial animus against Whites, and White farmers in particular. She would not be human, otherwise. Nor is it surprising for a Black audience to chuckle and applaud a tale of humiliation and personal destruction of a White farmer. If Blacks don't have personal memories of suffering under White racism, they can be guaranteed that someone in their family did indeed suffer it, unless they emigrated from Africa quite recently, in the last 30 years or so. No reasonable person, White or Black or Hispanic or anything else, would dispute this reality of past oppression and brutality.

Whites have largely, however, stopped caring. Assuming the White farmer who shot her father was her father's age, it is quite likely he is already dead. If not dead, then certainly so elderly that the ravages of age make him infirm. The shooting death of her father, however terrible, and however awful there was no jury indictment, had nothing to do with Whites living today, many if not most who either not even born, or only toddlers, when the incident happened. They have nothing to feel guilty about, and largely don't. Moreover, White guilt has as its necessary corollary, the absolute purity of Black innocence. As blameless victims. The jury nullification, by a majority Black jury, of OJ Simpson's murder trial, for killing a White woman (his ex-wife) and a White man (bystander Ron Goldman) makes trading on long-past outrages of racially based jury nullification a non-starter for most Whites. As do various other outrages, including the dismissal of the charges, after the defendants had pled guilty, of voter intimidation by the first Black Attorney General, against the New Black Panther Party. Even more explosive are the charges brought by J Christian Adams in Pajamas Media that Whites under the DOJ Civil Rights Division are deemed to not possess civil rights. J. Christian Adams being the former DOJ Civil Rights attorney who resigned under protest.

Whites are not consumed with views of "White supremacy." David Duke, of loathsome memory, late of the Klan and other racist groups, lives in either Salzburg Austria or Mandeville Louisiana if Wikipedia is to be believed, in near penury. [I cannot find a picture of his house, but news accounts depict it as not being very nice.] Louis Farrakhan's mansion, on the other hand, rivals Oprah's, and images of it may be found here, and here. There are sadly no photos of the Farrakhan mansion on Google Streetview. There are some photos here, as you can see the fountain is turned on. Let it be noted, that with Whites at approximately 65% of the population, and with greater average income than Blacks, David Duke (deservedly) lives in penury. Sadly, Louis Farrakhan, appealing to the 12.5% of the population that is Black, lives in a mansion, though one of admittedly bad taste.

Rev. Wright has a million dollar plus mansion overlooking a golf course, reports the Chicago Sun-Times. A video tour of Wright's new mansion may be found here. Rev Wright's new mansion (complete with four car garage, don't forget to take the video tour) is located in an exclusive, nearly all-White gated community.

Your average NFL fan would react with horror and outrage if his team's coach announced he was replacing his Black players with White ones. An immediate 16 game loss season would be predicted — and quite likely come true. Black players predominate in the NFL and NBA. The National Football League is about 70% Black, the NBA about 80% Black. The former brings in about $4 billion in revenue, most of it from White fans. The latter brings in about $1 billion in revenue, again from White fans. After Michael Jordan's retirement, LeBron James is Nike's chief marketing tool (and former base of Cleveland's economy):

There are no White Corners in the NFL, only two White Wide Receivers, and no White Safeties. Why is that? Does the NFL have a policy forbidding the employement of White players, with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell standing in the NFL Training camp doorway? No. Terrell Owens had a scorching 4.36 second 40 yard dash time, and Wes Welker had a 4.55 second 40 yard dash, at that speed one of the faster White players. The other White Wide Receiver who started in the NFL during the 2009 Season was Austin Collie, with a time of 4.63. The average White NFL fan believes, based on the published statistics and what he can see on the field with his own eyes, that the Black athletes at the highest level of performance have measurable advantages in speed, certainly. And likely strength and size as well. Speed, size, and strength are not everything, of course, even in the NBA, but there are not many players the size of Muggsy Bogues playing in that league either.

Far from believing in White racial supremacy, your average White sports fan will readily concede Black superior athletic prowess, certainly in speed, as the top 13 men in the 100 Meter Dash will confirm. Black athletes such as LeBron James command enormous salaries ($96 million over five seasons), because the largely White fan base believe they are the best, most athletic, and most exciting performers. Aside from his salary, LeBron James makes millions from endorsements and sales of various signature athletic shoes, jerseys, and the like.

Black dominance in sports that draw large and lucrative fanbases, with the enthusiastic backing of White fans who believe Black athletes to be superior (in speed anyway) to White athletes, means charges of racism not only ring hollow, but tend to enrage White fans. Do not they follow with pride and interest, the local sports celebrities, almost all of whom are Black? Do they not regard Black athletes as superior? Did not We Are All Witnesses posters of LeBron James dominate Cleveland buildings? Calling people "racist" who follow with obsessive interest their fantasy players, stats, and achievements, in the NFL, or NBA, nearly all of whom are Black, only angers Whites. While sports, particularly football and basketball, and baseball, played a great part in the end of Segregated America, that sword cuts both ways. Fans who enthusiastically embrace Black athletes are not racist, and resent being called racist.

But anger was not the main emotion that the Sherrod video evoked. Rather, it was fear. "I did just enough, to help him, so he couldn't say I didn't do anything for him." That was Sherrod's most explosive comment, and the one quite likely that is sure to help transform American politics. Whites have largely positive views on Black athletic superiority, at least, in professional sports that matter (outside of NASCAR which is more of a skill sport drawing speed/motor enthusiasts). But they do not wish to be punished for things that other White people did, long ago. The concerns are practical — how to avoid being punished by another Shirley Sherrod. For though in Sherrod's tale, she eventually relented, and a mere seven days before the Farmer lost his farm, did some things to help him keep it from foreclosure, there is no way to tell which non-White government official is intent on punishing Whites who come before them, and which are not. Like counterfeit money, the bad drives out the good, and lowers the value of the good to that of the bad. Shirley Sherrod might have had her epiphany, but others just as well might not. In the "post-racial" and post-Jobs America, there is little margin or give to tolerate for long the prospect of being made an example or victim for long past racial transgressions. This has led to a transformation, led by both Sherrod and James.

The two have helped transform American politics from its post 1975 configuration of Affirmative Action and private advancement, to one of hedging downside risk amidst lack of White guilt.

After 1975, with the continuation of Richard Nixon's Affirmative Action program by Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan, a consensus was achieved regarding racial preferences. Blacks and other non-Whites along with White women would receive Affirmative Action preferences, particularly against White men. But government's scope would have ultimate limits, it would not intrude on daily life, pick life's winners and losers, regulate every little thing of daily living, and the private sector would be where the jobs would exist, with government employment stable, but finding limited wage growth and being small in number. The opportunities would be in the private sector, with Affirmative Action of its own, but far smaller and limited in scope compared to government. Entering government service meant forgoing wage growth for security and pensions. For many, not a winning hand anyway.

As long as the economy grew, and private sector wages and jobs grew with it, social peace was obtained. No one wanted to rock the boat, generate accusations of racism, and endure social ostracism while the money was good.

Now, with private sector job growth collapsing, the only jobs that are growing in both wages and numbers are government jobs, particularly federal ones. The chart by Megan McCardle of the Atlantic shows government hiring the only real increase in jobs since the start of the recession. The "green shoots" were entirely government created. Indeed government is the only sector experiencing wage growth. Some of it completely corrupt, as in the Southern California City of Bell. But much of it simply patronage-pork. The result of the nearly $800 billion stimulus money, and the $1 billion TARP fund. Meanwhile, as the Inspector General of the TARP program reported (noted in The American Thinker):

[D]ealerships were retained because they were recently appointed, were key wholesale parts dealers, or were minority- or woman-owned dealerships.

While the IG report blasts the Administration for "needless" job losses that did not add to the economic viability of either GM or Chrysler, but rather detracted from it, to the tune of 100,000 jobs, the choices were clearly made on the basis of race and gender. Other allegations were made that Republicans and Hillary Clinton donors were disproportionately among the closed dealerships while none of the closed dealers were Obama donors.

Be that as it may, the expansion of the 2,500 page ObamaCare bill into daily life, with the requirement for small businesses to report to the IRS all purchase of $600 or more via 1099 forms, is ripe for abuse by race. Add to that the quota requirements for doctors and nurses rolled into the ObamaCare bill, and the Financial Regulation Bill (the Dodd Bill), including absolute percentages for senior management gender and race targets that must be met, and the potential for "I did just enough, so he couldn't say I didn't do anything" is vast. Let us examine the agencies that are most likely to be those directly affecting ordinary White voters lives.

The EEOC Website has statistics for Equal Employment and demographic composition of selected Federal Agencies. The 2009 Report is here. As Whites are about 65% of the population (check for a quick demographic breakdown), Blacks 12.5%, and Hispanics about 22.5% (Asians are about 1%, there are of course rounding errors), it is instructive to see what federal agencies over and under represent Whites, Hispanics, and Blacks.

The Department of the Treasury is 24.35% Black, 60.72% White, and 8.9% Latino. Contact Representatives (those dealing with the public directly) are 32.00% Black, 51.34% White, and 13% Latino. Tax Examiners are 23.6% Black, 60.82% White, and 10.6% Latino. Blacks are over-represented by about 50% overall, and 156% at the Contact Representative level. This drops to about 50% (slightly less) over-representation at the Tax Examiner level. Latinos are of course under-represented compared to their presence in the general population. For the Dept. of Education, Blacks are 36.62% of the workforce, 52.9%, and Latinos a paltry 4.42%. The Dept. of Health Services, set to play a major role in daily health care in America, is 19.89% Black, 51.1% White, and 3.1% Latino, with Asians making up 7.19%. The Small Business Administration is 26.47% Black, 56.34% White, and 10.7% Latino. Loan Specialists are 20.87% Black, 62.19% White, and 10.12% Latino.

For those curious, the Dept. of Agriculture is 10.84% Black (Blacks are under-represented), 77.67% White, and 6.24% Latino.

The response among White voters has been clear. The Tea Party clearly feels a targeting of their members by race. While it is true that some Tea Party members are Black and Hispanic, and some prominent victims in the Tea Party of anti-Tea Party, union violence, such as Kenneth Gladney, are Black (victimized ironically by White SEIU thugs, mostly supporters of Obama):

… it is clear the the Tea Party is a mostly White, middle aged, and female led organization. Not the type to stage street brawls, as its average participant is a White woman in her fifties, a small business owner or middle class professional such as a real estate agent. But one clearly seeing a big fat target painted on them for "spread the wealth" along racial lines, and wanting to stop and indeed roll back the growth of government. Not the least of which is the economic threat "I did just enough so he couldn't say I didn't do anything to help him" presents.

The middle class, middle aged, mostly female Tea Party, is not comprised of fanatical sports followers. Members of the Tea Party don't stay home from work, on NFL Draft Day, for example. But like sports fans of the NBA and NFL, they don't harbor racist, or racial supremacist views about Whites being somehow "superior" to any other group or race. Any such belief would not be only morally but aesthetically repugnant to them. But the lack of racism, or any personal connection or responsibility for it, also means they don't feel guilty. The fifty-five year old real estate agent, the 46 year old accountant, the 58 year old small business owner do not feel as though they or anyone in their family benefited from past racial oppression of Blacks, or even had a hand in it. The extraordinary social mobility and personal mobility that helped break regional and local traditions for good and bad, also left with it a "history-less" amorphous group of Americans, mostly White, who do not feel any special guilt or shame over past racism.

If you moved from Dallas, to Phoenix, to Kansas City, to Minneapolis, to Nashville, to Denver, in your lifetime, a series of moves by no means unusual, what is your personal connection to beating of civil rights protesters in 1965 on the Edmund Pettus Bridge? None. Nor is it your concern, as a middle class White voter. The only concern is, how do you hedge yourself against disaster? Against "I did just enough so that he couldn't say I didn't do anything?"

The answer the Tea Party came up with, is roll back government to a point where it is so small, and distant from people's lives, that it does not matter if the federal and local agencies are disproportionately non-White. Again, the job growth and wage growth would be in the private sector, free from Affirmative Action, and quotas, for the most part. This is the Tea Party agenda.

The other, more likely outcome in the end, will be forcing proportional quotas relative to the demographic strength and unity of White voters, who are moving towards Black and Hispanic patterns of bloc voting.


Because shrinking the federal, state, and local governments will be almost impossible. First, far too many commercial interests are tied up in all three types of government. Not just utilities, banks, and broadcasters, highly regulated, semi-monopolies, that help construct barriers to entry with the help of friendly, "captured" regulators, but the Big Three Auto companies, two of them owned by the Feds themselves, and likely to remain with significant government ownership for decades to come. Also embedded in government are various construction companies, home builders, manufacturers, the media (angling for their own bailout), computer companies, including Apple, Microsoft, Dell, Google, Oracle, IBM, and even E-bay and Yahoo. Also included in this embedded interest group marriage in government would be unions, from SEIU, to the AFL-CIO. Practically speaking, these groups combined have such financial, political, and organizational power that they can and will block any roll-back of government.

Not the least of which is that a Big Government helps make them permanent winners and other players forbidden even to enter.

But secondly, the temptation to "fight fire with fire" and simply put your own thumb on the scale is likely to overwhelming, and borne out by human history. In Indonesia, in Malaysia, in every other nation with significant amounts of multicultural, multiracial, and multi-religious populations, the dominant groups have dealt themselves the dominant, winning hand. Not the least of which is the widespread (and generally, true) perception that smaller groups, being insiders, have rigged the game. Thus government even after the Asian Crisis of 1998, has not grown smaller. It has grown marginally less corrupt in South East Asia, and also South Korea and Japan, but that corruption has been the turnout of one set of majority group, allied mostly with the Chinese diaspora business empires, in favor of another group of majority populations. So in Indonesia, the reformers are still Indonesians, you won't find many ethnic Chinese (who are periodically purged from business and political influence, not allowed in government at all, and the subject of informal anti-Chinese riots) in the corridors of power, officially anyway. The same is true of Malaysia which has formal quotas for the minimum amount of majority Malays and the maximum amount allowed for Chinese. In Singapore of course it is the other way around.

No one believes the government in America is anything less than corrupt, among the majority of White voters. Nor is there any trust that if the government was "rolled back" it could be managed as a sleeping dragon, providing useful cooking fire. All fear that the dragon will simply wake up and burn the entire place down with massive racial transfers and indeed, demographic transformations designed to create a permanent Democratic voting majority by importing the majority of Mexico. With the economy failing under no-growth, or anti-growth policies, punishing small business, promising carbon taxes through EPA regulations if nothing else, the engine of employment, small business, is tempted to grow by the only means available — capture of government. Which not only hedges downside risk of another Shirley Sherrod, but also massive wealth transfers to favored political and racial groups, and critically, allows the small businesses that help "capture" government to jigger things so they are the winner.

A bank that is viewed as corrupt will have few citizens willing to die to prevent its robbery. They might even stage their own pre-emptive robbery.

America is not what it once was. The private sector job and wage growth that led to social peace while non-Whites, particularly Blacks, found stability in employment in the governmental sector is gone. Now Government is expanding to pick every bit of winning and losing. Prof. Russel K. Nieli, University of Princeton, Lecturer in the Politics Dept. has calculated that for the most highly competitive public and private colleges, that provide "winners" by producing tomorrow's leaders:

To have the same chances of gaining admission as a black student with an SAT score of 1100, an Hispanic student otherwise equally matched in background characteristics would have to have a 1230, a white student a 1410, and an Asian student a 1550.

And that moreover, students participating in 4H, Boy Scouts, or Junior ROTC might as well not apply. That "poor Whites need not apply" to any of the elite colleges. The Gates Foundation, in conjunction with this, has no scholarships or aid available to poor Whites at all, reserving all of it for people of color.

The fundamental unfairness of this, as Whites feel they don't deserve to be "punished" for wrongs done decades ago by people mostly long dead, will not in my opinion lead to the Tea Party dream of a limited, color-blind, fairly irrelevant government.

In my considered view, America will morph into some version of Malaysia, or Indonesia, with a threatened, demographically fragile majority taking every step to protect and preserve its jealously guarded, hard-won spoils. With the devil taking the hind-most.

This is entirely foreseeable. If something is impossible to continue, it won't. Bernie Madoff had a long string, but it eventually ran out. So too, did the housing bubble. "US Housing prices haven't crashed in unison across the country in 70 years," housing market bulls announced. Until it did, utterly predictably. People don't want to see the obvious. That hard choices are the general mark of the human condition. That as Machiavelli says, when the poison is not obvious, it is easy to treat, but almost impossible for the patient to recover, when the malady is seen by everyone. This is mostly due to the hard choices involved. Affirmative Action, White Guilt, racial quotas and preferences that punish Whites (and Asians) to enable others, is a bubble, just like the Housing Market.

America has become a reverse Indian casino, with White voters moving to the position to "cast members out of the tribe" to make the money, always shrinking, go farther. Stasis and stagnation bring with it ugly choices. Including the end of racism and White Guilt. For that, Shirley Sherrod and LeBron James are at least partly responsible.

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Monday, July 26, 2010

Toy Story Economics: Death of the Movies

The biggest thriller in Hollywood is not the Angelina Jolie movie "Salt" (Domestic Box office as of July 26, 2010, of $36 million, production budget of $110 million and likely promotional/marketing budget of $30 million). Nope. It is the changing economics that have killed the movies. Making them into mere advertising for the real profits: toys and merchandising, while Hollywood makes unprofitable movie after movie to amuse themselves and win awards. Nothing better shows the change in how the money flows than Toy Story 3D.

Disney has high hopes for Toy Story 3D. The Financial Times on Monday, July 19, on P. 16 (Dead Tree Edition, sorry no link) wrote that Disney hoped to beat "Finding Nemo" which at $868 million was Disney's highest grossing (worldwide) animated film. Dreamworks "Shrek 2" posting slightly higher gains. But ABC News reports that Disney expects to gain $2.4 billion in gross retail sales worldwide. That's 2.8 times the gross worldwide box office. The story from ABC also notes that "Cars" has posted $2 billion in retail sales and merchandising since its release in 2006. As Reuters notes in its story, the figure of $2.4 billion is roughly comparable to the entire turnover of Disney's Consumer Division every year.

This means power, slowly but surely, will shift from movie stars and directors, to writers-creators, and folks like Pixar's John Lasseter (CEO and creative force behind all its movies). While this might seem a good thing, it is more akin to Ford, GM, and Chrysler relying solely on gigantic pickup trucks for profits in the 1980's and 1990's and 2000's. After finding it could not build cars consumers wanted and make a profit. Just as striking as the money made on merchandising is the troubles Hollywood has in what should be its core business — making movies and collecting the ticket sales and DVD sales and rentals.

Consider a movie like say, "Salt." It cost a lot, $110 million. Perhaps Jolie took $20 million or so, probably less, but lets just assume she did. Absent a "star" like Jolie the movie would still cost $90 million or so. That's a lot. The budget for 1999's "the Limey" according to Box Office Mojo was a measly $10 million. It only grossed $3 million in limited box office release, but was a magnificent movie that belied its tiny budget. It had stars like Terence Stamp and Peter Fonda, and well known character actors like Luis Guzman. Soderbergh proved you could make a movie that had some action (not a lot, but enough), well-written plot and character development and tension, and have something that looked great on screen. John Carpenter once estimated that for most movies, about $30 million or so was about the lowest you could go, for any type of action film, consistently and not be skin of the teeth. Part of Hollywood's problem is just like Detroit's Big 3 — spiraling costs moving upwards every year with no way to control them. For Ford, GM, and Chrysler, it was unions and the reluctance to engage in a political fight with them (since they had powerful Capitol Hill allies who regulated heavily the Big 3), for Hollywood it is the habit of finding work for cronies, the in-crowd, and so on that make film budgets bloated.

But even worse are the films that are made just to make films. A movie like "Salt" is not even remotely possible to make a decent profit for the studio. Nor is it the kind of Oscar-bait, self-congratulatory bit of idiocy such as "the Reader" or "the Ghost Writer" (the latter by Roman Polanski starring Pierce Brosnan and Ewan McGregor). Made solely to pat Hollywood insiders on the back. A movie like "Salt" is not even that. It was made to keep cronies busy and employed, instead of making a profit for the studio.

Hollywood has turned into a really, really debased and freaky version of NPR. Most of the films don't make money, any more than NPR's radio shows make money (or PBS's broadcasts make money). Unlike PBS, which at least broadcasts Opera, Symphonies, and educational programming, Hollywood does not even function as a fine-arts institution keeping alive the works of Mozart or Beethoven or more obscure folks like Bartok. Of course, the most tame night at the most tame Hollywood star would beat the wildest night at the wildest NPR or PBS executive. Garrison Keilor's idea of going a little crazy is two trips to the salad bar. Lindsay Lohan's involves commandeering an SUV, jail time and custom tattoos.

Hollywood is faced with five problems. First, a significant portion, roughly half the country at least, despises its politics and the personal behavior and character of most of Hollywood. This is different. For a long time, Hollywood's actors have been pretty liberal. Dating back to Humphrey Bogart, and Kirk Douglas, liberalism ruled Hollywood and conservatives like John Wayne and Jimmy Stewart and John Ford were tolerated but did not set the tone. But conservative movie-goers did not care. Neither Douglas, nor Burt Lancaster, nor the late and lamented Paul Newman took to lecturing Americans on their original sins of … whatever. While living hypocritical lives of Nero-like debauchery and indulgence. They may have been plenty liberal, and they were, but they kept their personal lives private, did a lot of work for charity that drew respect, and never came out like a WWE "heel" to tell their audience how much "better they are than you."

Now their successors, Alec Baldwin, Jeanine Garofalo, Whoopi Goldberg, and Ellen Page, find it necessary to opine on the inherent racism, sexism, "anti-greenism" and many more sins held by most Americans. Even bimbo of the moment Megan Fox hoped one of her films villains would destroy Middle America. Only hemp-touter Woody Harrelson has refrained from constantly insulting the conservative side of the audience. Meanwhile conservatives have to "hide" their opinions just to get work, save for a few powerful and late-career enough who don't care or need to care, such as Adam Baldwin. Its notable that conservative actors and directors and writers take care not to insult the audience on the left, a practice not found on the other side.

This means "movie stars" cannot and will not be able to put butts in seats since they alienated half the audience. The conservative side just is not big enough. Tom Selleck is older, and past leading man status. Jon Voight was a leading man in the 1960's, not today. Only Adam Sandler, who is carefully apolitical, has been able to put butts in seats, and then only for "Adam Sandler Comedies" with lots of fart jokes. His "arty" movies are bombs. Hollywood pissed away good will just like Detroit did with cars like the Gremlin, the Pacer, and the Pinto.

Next, Hollywood cannot make films at a lower cost. Alienating half the potential audience, and as we will see later, not being able to connect with ordinary people, means Hollywood's current creative folks have to make movies a lot cheaper. Which they cannot do. Like Detroit, they are trapped in a high cost production environment. All the deals with Bollywood or moving production overseas will fix things only on the margins. A production might shave about 10-20% of the production cost, but Hollywood makes still, far too many movies, nearly all of them destined for financial losses. Making the loss making marginally less expensive will only delay the bleed-out.

Sales of DVDs, particularly libraries, won't help. The Financial Times on Saturday, July 24, "Life and Arts, page 1, Who Killed James Bond" noted (again dead tree edition, no link sorry) [note to readers — the Financial Times limits views on articles to one per month for those who don't register, and three per month for those who do, perhaps clearing cookies and such will allow you to read any Google search] reports that MGM, had revenues from its film library of more than 4,000 films, fall from $500 million to less than $250 million for the last fiscal year. Studio wide, DVD revenues have fallen (rentals and sales) by an average of 25% year on for the last three years, as consumers find shelves saturated and paychecks stressed. DVD sales for a while in the late 1990's and early 2000's, like the video tape revolution of the mid 1980's and early 1990's, had propped up Hollywood's failing business model. The way big profits on SUVs and trucks did for the Detroit Big 3. Clearly, with consumers strapped that support is at an end.

Third, Hollywood cannot make, reliably, films that make money by connecting to people. Hollywood has always had the problem that stardom, fame, enormous amounts of money, people telling creative folks they are like God, sycophantic behavior in the extreme, and so on removing any notion of reality or ability to understand and connect to ordinary people and the concerns in their lives. During the Golden Age, hard-bitten entrepreneurs like Mayer and Goldwyn and Warner kept Hollywood's creative people on a short leash. These men at least had enough memory to understand what ordinary people were like, and the famous "butt detector" (if they wriggled around in their seat during a screening the film was no good) acted to short-circuit stupid ideas. This is why Ed Wood was a laughable outcast figure, instead of say … the Wachowski brother who got the full sex change operation and looks like a melted wax candle. Jack Warner and Louis B. Mayer and Sam Goldwyn prevented a "Boxing Helena" or the world's most boring orgy (Matrix Reloaded) from being made in their era. Today's Hollywood, bloated by money and isolated, and filled with contempt for, its audience, finds those movies classics. From "Plan 9 from Outer Space" to the Wachowski's latest film, about a gay soldier in Iran in love with a gay Jihadi, the weird and debauched came from the fringes to center stage. In the same fashion that GM, Ford, and Chrysler stopped caring about making reliable, dependable cars of the highest quality, and focused on pushing out cheap, junk, because they didn't care much. People would buy anything, they figured, and who could figure out the consumer.

William Goldman once said, reportedly, that in Hollywood, no one knows anything. Nothing more stunning its indictment of Hollywood has ever been said. Sam Goldwyn knew something. So did Louis B. Mayer. And Jack Warner. The films they presided over remain classics and are loved to this day. No one knows anything in Hollywood, because to borrow "Big Hollywood" Editor John Nolte's words, they are too busy doing lines of coke off the backside of an underage hooker. Exhibit A: Oliver Stone wants to put Hitler and Context and says the Holocaust wasn't that bad.

No one knows anything because they hire a known whack-job, like Stone (or the Wachowskis) and expect to make money. Stone has various rumors floating around his life, which may or may not be true, but his films outside Platoon and Wall Street have never made money. This includes: W, Alexander, World Trade Center (who thought having Stone direct this would make money?), Commandante, Any Given Sunday, U Turn, Nixon, Natural Born Killers, JFK, Born on the Fourth of July, Talk Radio, and the Doors. No one knows anything because no one wants to know anything. Instead they'd rather believe that a trans-sexual is the best person to film a kids movie (Speed Racer) or that Oliver Stone can remake one of the two movies he made money at, thirty years later, at a profit. Already a boycott Showtime movement (over Stone's "Lighter side of Hitler" documentary) is in the offing, with the ADL coming down hard on Stone. Forget Mel Gibson, Stone's views and beliefs are mainstream in Hollywood. And anathema in middle America.

If personnel is policy, Hollywood's policy is to choose the people with the least ability to connect to the audience (but the most like them) to make movies and then wonder why most of them fail. They'd be better off hiring Democratic Senatorial Candidate from South Carolina, Alvin Green, to make their movies. The failure rate would be less (since at least Green hasn't had a sex change nor played Kenneth Mars neo-Nazi, Hitler loving character in Mel Brooks "the Producers" for real instead of laughs). "I tell you, the Fuhrer could dance the pants off Churchill!"

Fourth, Hollywood cannot rely on the world box office for salvation. World box office is fairly new, as an obsession. Movie makers in the 1930's, 1950's, 1960's, 1970's, 1980's, did not obsess over it. World box office requires, essentially, foreign exhibitors to faithfully record box office receipts, and faithfully and truly give Hollywood studios their fair share of the receipts. Anyone see a problem here? Exhibitors in the UK, Australia, Canada, and parts of Europe such as the Scandinavian countries, the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, are probably pretty faithful and accurate. Japan may or may not be accurate. Studios will be lucky to get much of anything back from places like China (where Walt Disney has complained for decades about piracy and illegal showings of Disney films to no avail). Much less South East Asia, Korea (notorious for piracy), Mexico, South America as a whole, or the Middle East. Warners has shut down its Korean and Spanish language DVD divisions due to piracy. As noted, the Blue Line story in the post previous, reported on the open sale of pirated DVDs of Iron Man 2, with vendors showing the copies on portable DVD players to show the quality of the copy. Prices were $5 each, with discounts for multiple purchases. At home and abroad, pirating is easy and profitable, eating into box office receipts, most of which in places lacking rule of law, a tradition of honest business, and the like, are iffy at best on how much significant box office revenue properly goes back to studios. After all, a savvy operator can simply screw the studio, and open up for business under a new name. Studio heads half a world away, speaking no Korean, or Spanish, or Cantonese, are not likely to squawk, and if they do, well the local powerful are paid off anyway.

Which brings us to the fifth problem. Hollywood's near total dependence on merchandising for the core of its profits. With merchandising, though illicit copies in the factories in China where toys and bedsheets and other items are made remain a fact of business life, the toy is sold or not. Hollywood takes its cut, first. The Distributor then has to sell the toys, or Buzz Lightyear bedsheets, or Woody lunchboxes, or not. A big hit with kids and families, like Toy Story 3D, can tide over a company like Disney for a couple of years. The revenue equal to selling toys from the Lion King, the Little Mermaid, Cars, Finding Nemo, Up, Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland, Sleeping Beauty, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Mickey, Pluto, Goofy, and the like in a non-hit year. That's pretty astonishing, the level of money, and the much lower level of risk (remember, unlike foreign box office, Disney takes the cut from the manufacturer/distributor, and then its up to them to shoulder the rest of the risk).

And it all rests on families. Or more precisely, the few non-debauched, non-corrupt, non-weird Hollywood creative people to make stories appealing to families. Then make those stories using computer animation. Which should, in theory, offer much lower costs, since the entire movie is created on cheap (compared to cast and crew on location or sound stage) render farms. Skilled animators still need to create "living" (and not "undead" ala Polar Express or other scary/icky animation jobs where the characters look like undead zombies) characters that express emotion in ways to evoke it in the audience. But that’s still cheaper than paying a big crew to film, even say Amber Tamblyn instead of Angelina Jolie (btw, Tamblyn's a better actor) in an action film.

But there is a risk. The barrier to entry is so cheap — anyone can do it. Leaving Hollywood vulnerable to say, Game companies looking to branch out or keep studios without a current hit employed, or effects houses such as New Zealand's WETA studios, or Lucas's Industrial Light and Magic, or any number of similar firms in the UK or Italy or France. All you would need is a story, a good script, and skilled animators. The render farms are cheap and can be constructed as needed. Game and effects companies already have them. Voice actors can be hired, easily. No one cares if the voice is done by say, Adam Baldwin versus Tom Cruise, or Christian Bale versus Kevin Conroy (the animated Batman voice actor). People are still looking at animation.

Then the next Toy Story 3D can generate all those licensing and merchandising revenues for someone else. Game companies, of course, probably lack the creative people able to make stories appealing to families with kids, as opposed to blowing stuff up. Effects people probably lack that too. But John Lasseter or someone like him could come in with the skills and emotional connection to ordinary people to provide that missing piece.

The other part of the risk is that aside from Lasseter, Brad Bird, and a few other writer/creator/director types, Hollywood is not over-run with normal people who would not be a freak or freak show among middle America. The few people able to make films that connect and do not offend ordinary people are Hollywood's vulnerable point. The movie "Fantastic Mr. Fox" directed and written by Wes Anderson, voiced by George Clooney and Meryl Streep, failed miserably at the Box office. It cost $40 million, with another $30 or so for marketing, and pulled in $21 million domestically and $25 million in foreign box office (grosses, the studio likely saw far less than that net). The movie just did not connect.

Kids don't care about George Clooney. Or Streep. They care about story, characters, an affirmation of their own, very middle class lives (that's also who buys toys and bedsheets and lunchboxes). If you wondered why the local mega-mart did not carry Fantastic Mr. Fox lunchboxes, well that's why. The movie tanked.

Hollywood probably hopes for a bail-out, at some point. "Don't let your favorite director lose his Malibu mansion!" "Keep hope alive, and the cocaine flowing!" Given the depth of disdain for Hollywood, and the lack of any credible reason to bail them out (few people will lose their jobs), that is probably only a coke induced daydream. The integrated mega-companies can run deep and lasting deficits for years, and probably will. They are very big. It took the Roman Empire, GM, and Chrysler a very long time to fall. For the latter two, about thirty years or so. Hollywood might have another ten to fifteen years left. But eventually, it too will fall.

Because Hollywood can no longer make movies cheaply enough, that people want to see.
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Sunday, July 25, 2010

Life on the Blue Line

Sometimes, the LA Times does good reporting. In early June, the LAT did just such a job. In the June 9 story on the Blue Line and the people who ride it, the LAT showed the "vibrant, multicultural future" in store for the White Majority. As always, read the whole thing. That vibrant, multicultural future though, looks a lot like hell for most of the country. Who never got a vote on replacing the mostly middle class, mostly White society (America in 1940 was 89% White, 10% Black, and 1% everything else) with the folks pictured on the Blue Line.

As America's middle class shrinks into the working and even underclass, this sets up a conflict that will not go away, and promises to shape American politics for a generation. Middle and working class Whites now have a series of concrete examples of what the future holds for them. No longer are they a frog slowly boiled in water — the gas is turned up to full heat.

Americans love their cars. Not only do cars give Americans freedom to live where they want, freedom to live where they want gives social peace. The standard story of the Civil Rights Movement is a triumphant call to moral clarity and White Guilt by oratorical genius Rev. Martin Luther King. Yet other men, equally as gifted, as Dr. King, failed miserably in moving the White majority out of support for Jim Crow Segregation. What happened? The cynical (but correct answer) was post-War prosperity bringing the automobile and suburban housing, far away from Blacks, allowed White America the leisure to stop doing (Segregation, Jim Crow) what it found distasteful and most of all, unnecessary. Since the suburbs were lily-White. An America not cheek and jowl with homeless folks, urination, folks pushing massive amounts of recyclables (see the picture to one side), selling pirated goods, or, as the comments to the story indicate, folks openly masturbating, was one quite willing to let Blacks (Hispanics were not a major presence in America until much later than the Civil Rights Movement) rule themselves.

Now, the hard-won social peace and political, cultural, and economic arrangements that bought America time is coming crashing down. Whites no longer feel guilty but afraid. As Hotair points out, Obama's new National Ocean Council will ban ALL off-shore oil drilling, and regulate all economic activity in the waters, and hundreds of miles inland. Energy prices, as Obama promised before the election will skyrocket (click the link to see Obama himself on video promise this). The effect will be to force those White middle and working class people still working into commutes akin to the Blue Line. While a horrible job market pushes middle aged folks to live with their parents as they scrap in the "Craigslist economy."

This is not a recipe for social peace. No one got a vote on turning America into Mexico Norte. No one voted on permanently reducing most Middle/Working class Americans incomes by job losses, continued issuance of H1-B visas (over one million were issued this year in the midst of a miserable economy), continued immigration, legal and illegal, and ever increasing racial quotas for jobs that exclude Whites. The just concluded Dodd bill has hundreds of racial quotas excluding Whites, as does ObamaCare.

All of this would be problematic, if times were good, and Whites lived the previously separate and exclusive lives they have lived for several generations. A person on the West Side of LA, could avoid interaction with poor non-Whites (other than tipping the waiters and busboys at the various restaurants, or car valets at parking places), with ease. Los Angeles, despite its many immigrants and containing the second largest concentration of Mexicans outside of Mexico City, remains in practice, a very segregated city. Parts of Venice, Santa Monica, Playa Del Rey, Marina Del Rey, are very White and segregated indeed. Not by law but by class and wealth. In other suburbs, the levels of segregation are less strong, due to less wealth required to live there, but still present. Parts of the San Fernando Valley are still pretty White and homogeneous, as are parts of Pasadena, and far-flung outposts such as Big Bear and Lake Arrowhead and Manhattan Beach.

Moving people out of their cars (because energy prices sky-rocket) on cheap public transportation is a recipe for "punishing" White people for terrible, bad things done by other White people, long dead. It is bound to be resented and already, the comments about the LAT story are revealing:

I used to commute to DTLA on the Blue Line even when I moved to Los Alamitos.  The last time I was on the Blue Line was one that left LA around 6:30. I had my nose in my book the entire time so it only came to my attention when I got up to get off the train, the guy in the next aisle was...well...err...getting off.  God knows how long he had been at it...
The next day, I found the OCTA 701 bus from Huntington Beach to DTLA. And I never look back.

There are so many more strange "regulars" on that train and the occasional one-timer.  They can be annoying, especially the ones that stink.  But most of the time I am just entertained.  You cannot imagine how BIZARRE some of these people are, it is AMAZING.  And then there are the "normal" ones that talk about their jail time and parole officers with ease or drop the "N' bomb every other word or cuss at high volumes while announcing their intention to kick someone's butt the next time they see them.

The one mention of sheriffs shows just how often you're likely to see their presence on the blue line. These kinds of activities, ubiquitous on the Blue Line, take place with impunity because riders know security there is practically nil. And, when L.A. Metro says they need to raise fares, they should first renovate Blue Lone stations to collect fares. That alone would cut down on a lot of the unlawful, uncivilized activities on the line. I know what I'm talking about as a FORMER Blue Line rider.

The story starts off with a compelling lead:

In a place dominated by freeways and the automobile's numbing isolation, the 22-mile light-rail line — the oldest in L.A. County, marking 20 years of service this summer — is a rolling improvisational theater where a cast of thousands acts out a daily drama that is by turns poignant, sad, hysterical and inexplicable. Whoa! Did a guy just get up from his seat and urinate before stumbling off the train?

Yes, folks, he did.

Five bucks gets you a day pass to one of the most unpredictable shows in town.

In South Los Angeles, the Blue Line's doors open and a wiry homeless man lugging a bedroll collides with a very large woman as they step aboard. He is white, she is black and both explode into expletives.

"That's three times I've been assaulted in the last hour by a black person!" the man roars.

"Just because you're white ... you got a lot of nerve!" the woman shouts.

"I'm calling the sheriff!" the man howls. "You're going to jail! In handcuffs!"

Rules are everywhere, but never enforced:

The disembodied voice telling riders what they cannot do on the Blue Line is a constant companion. Signs galore warn of prohibitions under Section 640 of the Penal Code, subject to a $250 fine: No entry without valid fare. No littering. No smoking. No spitting or chewing gum. No skateboarding. No loud or rowdy activity. No in-line skating. No playing of sound equipment. No eating or drinking.

Why? Because enforcing the rules, against a largely non-Working, non-Middle Class, non-White set of patrons, will bring screams of "racism" and likely, violence. The LA County Sheriffs avoid the Blue Line for a reason — because it requires extensive resources and charges of racism, political abuse, and grief that the Sheriff's Dept. just does not want to endure. White, Middle and Working class people are self-policing. While not imbued of any special moral insights, this population commits crimes including petty ones such as playing sound equipment, or eating, or urination, or fare jumping, at far lower rates than poor and Working class Latinos (mostly Mexicans) and Blacks. Having seen the subways used by the White professional class in DC, I can attest it is very clean, no drinking and eating rules vigorously enforced, and populated almost entirely by people working in the Federal government, often the military. The subway systems of Beijing, are of course, spotless and filled with well-behaved people. Despite the less than fastidious bathing routine of your average Beijinger. Hong Kong's subway system is jammed, filled with people, but never with gang members menacing the public (they do this in other more discreet ways, Hong Kong is filled with gangs), or public urination, or hawking pirated goods (which are found elsewhere in abundance) or anything else so anti-social. Hong Kong not being known to its iron clad commitment to the rule of law and fussy moral nature, it is still a place filled with people of almost all the same ethnic background, who go to work every day and then go back home. Filled with crime and corruption, its subway system is safe and clean despite millions using it each day.

Pirated goods are found everywhere (along with hawking of water and food)

No need to walk the streets of downtown's Fashion District looking for pirated DVDs. On the Blue Line, the pirates come to you. The going rate is one DVD for $5, three for $10 and seven for $20.
"You got 'Iron Man 2'?" a passenger asks a young man moving through the train with a backpack weighed down with DVDs.

"Naw, I'm all sold out," he answers. "But I'll be getting some more later on today. You gonna be riding later?"

[Editor's emphasis]"Iron Man 2" opened in theaters later that week.

"A lot of these guys sell you stuff, and you can hear people laughing and babies crying in the background," says Arlene Valdez, a passenger who buys only from a trusted source: a man with a jet black ponytail who says his name is Joe. He carries a portable DVD player to assuage skeptics.

"His quality is best," Valdez says, buying "Astro Boy" for her son.

The joys of Three Card Monte are found:

On the other end of the platform, two men are talking and exchanging money. One is older, with gray stubble and a jaunty zebra-stripe hat. The other is younger and clean-shaven. He's wearing a brown work shirt embroidered with the name Paul.

The pair get on the next train to L.A — but not together. The Hat takes a seat, places a folded newspaper on his lap and pulls out three twist-off bottle caps. He places a nut under one of the caps and the game begins.

"Who's got 20?" The Hat says, his delicate fingers rotating the bottle caps as though they were in a centrifuge. "You can't win unless you make a bet."

Paul is willing and eager — as he is the next day on a different train.

He wins, he loses, he wins again. Eventually other gamblers jump in. Around and around the bottle caps go; where the nut is only The Hat knows.

"If I lose a dollar, I don't holler!" he shouts. "If I lose, I never cry the blues!"

They've taken over a corner of the train car. A dozen gamblers are hollering, laughing, egging each other on. Jacksons are flying. Paul isn't playing anymore. At each stop he pokes his head out the door and scans the platform.

"You want a chance to get even?" The Hat asks a man who has lost a wad. "Don't be scared! A scared man don't win!"

Los Angeles of course, has always had its rough places. Though Big Joe Turner, and Nat Cole played at places on Central Avenue, it was always rough. But the roughness stayed there, and had limits. It was also avoidable. LA's record of "only" two riots would have been far higher had the freeway system and private autos not allowed the mostly White majority to avoid the rough places.

Now, Whites in the US face the real prospect of being crowded out. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Whites will slip into the minority in California in 2016. This would be problematic if the non-Whites were all rich or at least middle class, because naturally they would exclude Whites from as many opportunities as they could. Human nature being what it is. Hispanics (read: Mexicans) are significantly younger than Whites, median age for Hispanics being 28, while for Whites it is 44, in the state of California. Hispanics have kids in their teens, regardless of marriage, or "affordable family formation" or any other factor. Whites have them if at all, in their mid to late thirties, at the very end of the fertility window. The Hispanic strategy seems a winning one, since sheer numbers can force demographic concessions, i.e. privileged take on resources, transfer from Whites, and pushing Whites out of more and more spaces in government, in culture, and in the economy. While this will eventually kill the transfer payments, it is a problem for later generations. It can go on for some time.

However, the kicker is that few Whites now have the money to pull up roots and move to Whitopia. Defined by Black author Richard Benjamin as a White Utopia, with few non-Whites, and a solid middle class lifestyle. Widespread Mexican immigration and the coming collapse of Mexico into some Zeta-led narcostate (promising to send millions more to the US) mixed with a collapsed and abused (by government piling on costs and regulations) economy promises a White revolt. Particularly when issues abound: a Black President and Attorney General dismissing the case against the New Black Panthers. The study from Princeton showing the relative SAT scores for Blacks, Hispanics, Whites, and Asians needed for admission into top ranked colleges, being 1100, 1230, 1410, and 1550 respectively have fueled resentment. As has the revelation that activities like 4H and Future Farmers of America and ROTC doom any admission chances. The Shirley Sherrod incident sent chills up White America's spine (more on that in a later post). Job losses and wage declines mount under America's First Black President, who seems disinclined to do anything about it but lecture White America for its original sin of racism.

But it is in transportation that America's former Middle class, now moving downwards into working class, finds itself humiliated, distressed, and antagonized. White America would prefer not to think about race. It would prefer not to contemplate being a minority, and being both discriminated against and being helpless, lacking even numbers. It would prefer not to find its traditional culture replaced by that of Mexico, largely. It would prefer not to think about being locked out of business, culture, and politics by a White skin and lack of Spanish.

The Blue Line, the future of America, puts all that into unavoidable contemplation. Forcing White America to think about all these things. Unsurprisingly, White America has found that it does not like them at all. This does not mean that former Middle Class White Americans will join the Klan. They find the very idea of racial supremacy disgusting, and indeed would certainly admit that on average, Blacks have advantages over Whites. White fans don't find an 80% Black NBA or a 70% Black NFL to be the product of racism against Whites, but rather natural performance differences. The best, most dominant athletes in the NFL are unsurprisingly Black. White fans like it that way, figuring the best athletes give them the best chance for their team winning. The same is even more true in the NBA. If anything, most American Whites would argue for a natural Black athletic (in speed/size/strength events anyway) advantage and domination.

But the White majority finds itself shedding any vestige of White guilt. This is healthy. The people who did very bad things, including the Whites who according to news accounts, murdered Ms. Sherrod's father in 1957 and were never prosecuted, are now mostly long dead or in their dotage. The Whites alive today had nothing to do with it, and resent eternal punishment for the sins of people mostly not related to them, long dead. Balanced against this are notorious episodes of Blacks who killed Whites, and were never punished. OJ Simpson being the best known example. White guilt depended on a "virtuous" and "innocent victim" of "blameless" folks being constantly oppressed. Human nature being what it is, those were long odds to begin with.

The question is not one of morality, of good and evil, victims and oppressors, but sound policy, social peace, the path to prosperity, and for Whites, maintaining their increasingly thin edge of demographic dominance no matter what, for the alternative will be very, very painful.

Not many people want to play "Epic Beard Man" on an Oakland Bus ride that never ends:

The video has an astonishing 718K views, note that Google requires validation of age to view the video because of language. Most Whites are not as ... scrappy as the Epic Beard Man, who is six foot six, a former Marine, and was arrested for ... fighting at the Oakland Coliseum during a Raiders game.

But now, the downsized economy, ending a long, 60 year run of post-war prosperity, along with various punitive measures, unbridled immigration, most of it gallingly illegal, and special privileges for non-Whites coupled with special burdens on Whites, leaves White voters with no alternative to think about it.

The first, and most likely step, will be a White voter revolt. Not caring about being called racist, instead caring about avoiding the Blue Line and that Oakland bus ride that never ends. Few people want to spend all their time fighting. I would not.

This step is likely to fail. Obama shows no appetite, nor do Democrats, for trimming the sails and pulling a Clinton "End of Welfare as We Know It" routine. Lame duck sessions granting amnesty, citizenship, Cap and Trade, soaring energy prices, and Executive Action by the President will double-down on the goals of making America a White-minority nation as quickly as possible. For the pleasure of "getting Whitey" (which is understandable among Blacks and even Hispanics), and political gain by Democrats seeking a permanent majority. White voters would concede that folks like Shirley Sherrod would indeed, have good reason to hate them, and Hispanics are unlikely to like or want to become White culturally or in any other fashion.

But being liked or morality or anything else along those lines are not likely to dominant an Angry White population that sees an Executive Branch and lame duck Democrats giving them the Bird. Physical safety (avoiding that Oakland bus ride) is likely to be the primary concern.

What is likely to happen is raising of the stakes. If all those Mexicans are brought into the US and made instant citizens, well that too can be reversed. As the Eighteenth Amendment was by the Twentieth. Ending Prohibition and the Noble Experiment. Other means, too are likely to be tried, including private security firms, unencumbered by public safety regulations, doing their part to discourage those from inhabiting spaces "belonging" to the middle class. This is common in South Africa, and South America. Action on the State level, is quite likely, including open defiance of the US President, and perhaps even the Supreme Court. This could include State border patrols, State-run imprisonment for illegal immigration (likely in labor camps) and more as the federal government simply refuses to enforce immigration law. Obama's Aunt Zeituni, illegally in the US, receiving Welfare, is likely to be a large political issue and one that further enrages and focuses the White Majority, itself on hard times. States are likely to be polarized as Dem-led non-White majority states, and "Red" interior states where Whites are the Majority.

There will be little appetite for compromise. Steve Sailer believes that Blacks and American Indians deserve and should have preferential treatment, but no one else, along the lines of the Jim Webb column in the Wall Street Journal. He makes a decent case, but the willingness of a White population being made rapidly into a minority, and one discriminated against in very visible forms, from buses in Oakland to the highest avenues of power in Washington, is probably going to be zero.

Affluent, powerful Whites of course have no worries about being a minority. Their lives are set, indeed even better without competition and possible downfall by ambitious White folks from "boring" flyover states. Young White women, being enamored of Princes, Princesses, aristocracy and nobility of all kinds (just read the vampire novels which invariably have a complex social structure modeled on feudal nobility) naturally support the affluent Whites who view everything in moral terms and threats to their own power. Every other White group, however, has an immediate goal: avoid the Blue Line. Avoid the Oakland Bus system.

In furtherance of that goal, White guilt is pretty much dead. And the only question is how much power and control can ordinary Whites grab to the exclusion of everyone else. Morality, and pretty much everything else, does not come into play. While it might seem the current system of White Guilt, "Racism" accusations, affirmative action, penalties against Whites, and special privileges (to break numerous minor laws with relative impunity by non-Whites in daily life) is stable and enduring, the fundamentals are not reassuring.

Because no one wants to ride the Blue Line if they don't have to ride it. Increasingly, Whites are asking why they need to ride it at all.
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