Despite the fact that 99% of those in charge of the financial and political institutions that are responsible for the current political crisis are rich, white men, it seems that black and brown folks are being set up to the take the blame for this. Apparently, the bank Washington Mutual (WaMu) failed because it “hired minorities,” if you are to believe National Review‘s Mark Krikorian. This is not a new stance for the National Review, and their elite, articulate version of racism is a good reminder that white supremacy doesn’t always wear Klan robes. Daniel De Groot, writing at Open Left, has an excellent piece about racism and the current financial crisis (h/t Paul at BS). To highlight the NR’s current racism and connect to a legacy of this kind of thinking at the magazine, De Groot posts a quote from them in 1957:
The Central question that emerges–and it is not a parliamentary question or a question that is answered by merely consulting a catalog of the rights of American citizens, born Equal is whether the White community in the South is entitle [sic] to take such measures as are necessary to prevail, politically and culturally, in areas in which it does not predominate numerically? The sobering answer is Yes–the White community is so entitled because, for the time being, it is the advanced race… [emphasis from De Groot].
De Groot goes on to comment that:
none of this has changed. NR still believes the enlightened minority should prevail over the “atavistic” majority, and violence is an acceptable solution to make that happen.
The violence is economic violence rather than cracking the heads of lunch-counter-protestors, and it seems clear that the mechanisms for a bailout being put into motion now are intended to benefit the wealthy – and the overwhelmingly white – elite.
Also don’t forget Cavuto at Fox saying on multiple occasions that the banks made loans to “risky folks;” that is, to “minorities” (see http://mediamatters.org/items/200809190021). Another example of using minorities as a scapegoat when things go wrong.
I’m of the opinion that the missing billions from Wallstreet is located in Cavuto’s water-tank head. He forgets that his people were treated like ni–ers before they “were made” white.
What else can we blame on black people? Failure to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq? Sarah Palin’s nosedive in approval ratings? Climate change? ughhh!!!
Ann Coulter has echoed this conservative argument, blaming democrats and minorities for the housing crisis. She likens democratic policies to affirmative action, arguing that “they gave your loan to an unqualified minority.” See here: http://townhall.com/columnists/AnnCoulter/2008/09/24/they_gave_your_mortgage_to_a_less_qualified_minority.
John Ridley offers a thoughtful rebuttal (supported with data) to this line of thinking here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/john-ridley/conservatives-race-bait-t_b_129653.html
Coulter, Bachman, and Palin make strong arguments or cases for the dissolution of gender based Affirmative Action.
Hey JDF, Adia, GDAWG! Thanks for the additional links and points on this. This is big news and it’s important how the narrative gets framed.