It was a slow, reluctant process. I started out liberal: the child of Asian immigrants, both parents always voting Democratic. Then, at college one day, I was sipping coffee in the cafeteria, which featured an enormous glass window. Suddenly, my reverie was broken by the crash of that window being smashed. It was broken deliberately by a mob of black students carrying signs such as “Free Housing for Bridge Students.” “Bridge” was a program that admitted blacks and Hispanics to my prestigious public university with far lower grades and test scores than those required of Asians and whites.
That struck me as an example of biting the hand that feeds you: increased entitlement rather than gratitude and subsequent hard work. It was also my first awareness of redistribution, since my parents’ taxes would be paying for the damage. My dismay accelerated when, in my classes, it was clear that most of the black students were grossly underprepared yet felt entitled to ask question after question, slowing the class down.............In graduate school, I attended a talk by a libertarian woman—unfortunately, I can’t recall her name—who said something I’ll never forget. She asked, “If the reason for high black crime rates and low achievement is racism, elitism, classism, and so on, why has there not been one country in the world, at any time in history, in which black achievement isn’t at the bottom?
That’s true of majority-black nations, formerly colonized nations, as well as other nations.” She then said, “Now let’s look at Latinos. There are 21 countries in Central and South America. Can you name one that gives you confidence that a Latino USA would be a better USA?”.....The author is a well-known public intellectual who has been published and interviewed countless times in America’s most prestigious mainstream media. She feels she cannot be honest publicly about the issues discussed here............To Read More....
My Take - I think it's unfortunate this woman fails to live up to her own values and go public with her views, but I actually understand it. I come across this all time in my industry. This unwillingness to take a public position that's not part of the conventional wisdom. I'm the one who stands up and says "you're all wrong and I'm going to tell you why", and for a long time it wasn't pleasant, but I'm Serbian, and it doesn't pay to make a Serb angry.
It's hard to tell how many times someone has told me they agreed with me entirely via personal conversations or e-mail but won't go on the record. Why? Well, it really quite simple. People want what's right, but mostly all people want are three hots and a cot. Security! People don't like confrontation. People just want to live their lives, and with as little aggravation as possible. They want to get up an go to work, come home and crack a beer, read the paper, eat dinner, watch television, play a little kissey face huggy bear, go to a movie, visit friends and family, go on vacation, cut the grass over the weekend and then repeat the whole process over again.
The willingness and desire to stand against conventional wisdom isn't normal, but it's necessary for those who can stand it because heterodoxy isn't for the faint of heart.
One more thing. What's the difference between conventional wisdom and traditional wisdom?
Conventional wisdom is what everyone believes at the moment. Wisdom that has not stood the test of time and may not last longer than ladies latest fashions, and may leave disaster in it's wake.
Traditional wisdom is what people believe because it's been proven solid by having stood the test of time. History is foundational to understanding - to traditional wisdom. Tell me the history - the whole history - and I will give you the answer.