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What flight? (Thomas Sowell hits one again)
TownHall ^ | Nov 24, 2005 | Thomas Sowell

Posted on 11/24/2005 4:37:29 PM PST by Sonny M

"The New White Flight" was the title of an eye-opening article in the November 20th issue of the Wall Street Journal. It was about a high school in Cupertino, California, where a growing Asian American student population is causing rising academic standards -- and causing many white parents to withdraw their children from the school and some to move out of the community.

The school has some of the highest test scores in the state. But, although everybody is in favor of high academic standards in the abstract, not everyone is in favor of having to struggle to meet those standards.

One white mother who was taking her son to an after-school soccer game noticed all the Asian American parents arriving to take their children to an after-school study program. A few years of her son playing soccer while the Asian kids were hitting the books would be bound to create academic disparities.

The phrase "white flight" is completely misleading. All over the world and throughout history, groups have collected together with people like themselves, whether by race, income, education, religion, or any number of other characteristics. There is nothing unique when white people do it.

A century or so ago, when Polish immigrants began moving into various Detroit neighborhoods, blacks began moving out. The research of pioneering black sociologist E. Franklin Frazier showed long ago that Harlem and other black communities were internally divided, with people of different income, education, and behavior patterns living in distinctly different zones.

When Eastern European Jewish immigrants began arriving in the United States and some began moving into German Jewish neighborhoods in Chicago, the German Jews began moving out. Similar patterns have been found among all sorts of groups.

When blacks move into a neighborhood and whites move out, that is something visible to the naked eye but there is nothing unique about such "white flight." The phrase is misleading for the same reason that saying white people have toenails would be misleading. It is true in itself but suggests something unique that is in fact common to human beings of all sorts.

It is not just in residential patterns that people sort themselves out in many ways. People tend to marry other people with similar IQs, even when they don't know what those IQs are. They just tend to gravitate toward people whose levels of understanding are similar to their own.

Cliques form in all kinds of places for all kinds of reasons. Chess players, jazz fans, and gamblers tend to hang out with others who share their interests.

The fact that people sort themselves out in many ways is not usually a big problem -- except to those people who cannot feel fulfilled unless they are telling other people what to do. Government programs to unsort people who have sorted themselves out have produced one social disaster after another.

The decades-long attempts to mix black and white school children through school busing produced no real educational benefits but much racial polarization and ill will. The same thing continues to be done in colleges in the name of "diversity" -- and with the same bad results.

Among the most unconscionable attempts to unsort people who have sorted themselves out by behavior are government programs to relocate people into neighborhoods where they could not afford to live without subsidies. Often the people in those neighborhoods have sacrificed for years in order to be able to live where they could raise their children in decent surroundings and not have to live in fear of hoodlums -- only to have the government import the bad neighbors and hoodlums they have tried so hard to escape.

Both kinds of people may be of the same race but that does not make the consequences any less painful or the resentments any less bitter. Blacks as well as whites have objected to having problem people thrust into their midst through housing subsidies or government housing projects being built in their neighborhoods.

Almost never do the social experimenters relocate dysfunctional and dangerous people into their own elite neighborhoods. They unsort other people's neighborhoods and embitter other people's lives.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Constitution/Conservatism; Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Editorial; Extended News; Government; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; US: California
KEYWORDS: asian; asianamericans; culture; cupertino; economics; education; ethnicity; race; racism; school; sowell; standards; thomassowell; white; whiteflight
I read the Wall Street Journal article (unfortunatly I can't post it here).

It pretty much stated that whites were moving their kids out of schools because they felt their kids couldn't compete with asians and engaged in alot of nasty sterotypes.

Some of the parents had problems with the schools becoming to academic focused and emphasising math and science instead of "all around" learning.

1 posted on 11/24/2005 4:37:30 PM PST by Sonny M
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To: Sonny M

Sowell...what a voice of reason.


2 posted on 11/24/2005 4:43:53 PM PST by Qwertrew (If you're new to the internet, CLICK HERE.)
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To: Sonny M

I'd love to see a George Allen/Thomas Sowell ticket :-)


3 posted on 11/24/2005 4:46:23 PM PST by AZRepublican
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To: Sonny M
Well, everyone has one's limits with regard to everything - be it the speed of running, the weight one could lift, acuity of hearing and vision, mental sharpness [IQ] and - necessarily derivative - ability to learn, the speed with which one learns, and the limits on one's capacity to learn as well. Thus everyone could indeed learn, but some will reach their limits at rudimentary reading and multiplication table within 6x6, while others would not reach theirs in MIT postdoctoral programs. And everything in between, of course. Thus the only reasonable solution would be rigorous streaming by capacity, with different curricula [and different schools] for each stream. Say, one could use the traditional set of 5 streams: retardees[IQ<=70], dullards [71<=IQ<=90], normals [91<=IQ<=110], brights [111<=IQ<=130] and the gifted [131<=IQ]. Transfer between adjacent streams ought to be made possible - both ways [one could drop down or - with effort - try to move up].
4 posted on 11/24/2005 4:50:56 PM PST by GSlob
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To: GSlob
the only reasonable solution would be rigorous streaming by capacity

Sorry, but that's called racism in these horribly PC United States. And THAT is a fact. Remember, if we can't all achieve equal greatness then we will all be held down to equal mediocrity.

5 posted on 11/24/2005 5:01:32 PM PST by AbeKrieger (Islam is the virus that causes al-Qaeda.)
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To: Sonny M

This article reminded me of some movie trivia I read on IMDB.com about the movie Planet of the Apes.

"During breaks in filming, actors made up as different ape species tended to hang out together--- gorillas with gorillas, orangutans with orangutans, chimps with chimps. It wasn't required, it just naturally happened."


6 posted on 11/24/2005 5:04:52 PM PST by wallace144
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To: AbeKrieger

Whatever it is called - the answer ought to be "so what?" - and I hope to see many private schools for the gifted.


7 posted on 11/24/2005 5:06:22 PM PST by GSlob
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To: Sonny M
If a farmer puts all of his livestock out into one pasture, at the end of the day he will find the sheep with the sheep, the goats with the goats, the pigs with the pigs, the cattle with the cattle.

A farmer is not surprised by this phenomenon. He considers it normal.

Only a liberal would be surprised...

8 posted on 11/24/2005 5:10:05 PM PST by okie01 (The Mainstream Media: IGNORANCE ON PARADE)
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To: Vom Willemstad K-9
ping



9 posted on 11/24/2005 5:10:48 PM PST by Cacique (quos Deus vult perdere, prius dementat ( Islamia Delenda Est ))
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To: Sonny M

Well Murray in his book "The Bell Shaped Curve" states that on average Chinese( can't remember if it was Asians in general) have IQs 15 points higher than Caucasians


10 posted on 11/24/2005 5:11:40 PM PST by uncbob
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To: GSlob
I hope to see many private schools for the gifted.

Ah, yes, More exclusionarey, racist schools. :) :) :)

11 posted on 11/24/2005 5:12:00 PM PST by AbeKrieger (Islam is the virus that causes al-Qaeda.)
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To: AbeKrieger

Yep. With [horribile dicti!] competitive admission by exams, no less.


12 posted on 11/24/2005 5:14:19 PM PST by GSlob
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To: uncbob
It's not THAT bad - they have only about 7 points advantage, not 15. 12 to 15 is the IQ advantage of Ashkenazi Jews.
13 posted on 11/24/2005 5:17:17 PM PST by GSlob
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To: Sonny M

I couldn't help but think that the white students are just the children
of geeky parents that suffered through high-school...
and now want to live vicariously through their children being rich, popular
and cool during their running of the high-school popularity gauntlet.

That sort of thing is difficult to do in a high-school in which most
of the kids (of any race) and their parents are more concerned about
academic achievement and honing analytical/scientific skills.


14 posted on 11/24/2005 5:21:12 PM PST by VOA
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To: VOA

"I couldn't help but think that the white students are just the children
of geeky parents that suffered through high-school...
and now want to live vicariously through their children being rich, popular
and cool during their running of the high-school popularity gauntlet."
THANK YOU VOA! That is what this is about. It's not that Asians are smarter. They are however, MUCH better parents. Jewish parents hold the same kind of high standards for their kids.


15 posted on 11/24/2005 5:27:19 PM PST by DogBarkTree
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To: Sonny M

This makes me sick. The weak parents feel it's more important that their coddled brats feel good about themselves than put in the work and study like the Asian kids.


16 posted on 11/24/2005 5:30:44 PM PST by DogBarkTree
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To: Sonny M
The fact that people sort themselves out in many ways is not usually a big problem -- except to those people who cannot feel fulfilled unless they are telling other people what to do.

That's the money sentence in the whole article.

17 posted on 11/24/2005 5:50:36 PM PST by twntaipan (What did the comPost know? And when did they know it?)
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To: uncbob

At Ivy League schools there are often the children of the wealthy gathered to network and mate. There is also a very high level of academic achievement. Those who want to be there apply themselves and find each class fascinating and challenging.

Then there are the community colleges where one student said, "I came here to get an easy degree." I told him, "Your associates degree will allow you to man the prestigious job of Second Window at McDonald's." If you are strong, you might do yardwork.


18 posted on 11/24/2005 5:54:27 PM PST by sine_nomine (Every baby is a blessing from God, from the moment of conception.)
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To: GSlob
It's not THAT bad - they have only about 7 points advantage, not 15. 12 to 15 is the IQ advantage of Ashkenazi Jews.

I knew about the Jews but the article was about the Asian/white

I went back and reread some of the book

Testing has basically two areas --scientific --verbal--. If you factor out the verbal IQ differences than the Asian is 8 to 13 points higher in the scientific area which will be 6 to 8 overall as you state
19 posted on 11/24/2005 6:02:05 PM PST by uncbob
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To: Sonny M
It pretty much stated that whites were moving their kids out of schools because they felt their kids couldn't compete with asians and engaged in alot of nasty sterotypes.

I didn't quite get that impression. The article is here.

It didn't sound like the parents whose kids left Monte Vista just wanted their children to socialize, just that they wanted a more congenial atmosphere -- a better fit for their children and their talents. What stood out in my mind were the Asian-American parents and graduates of the school who didn't like the atmosphere either, finding the competitive spirit driven by the newest arrivals.

It's not clear that ethnic groups going all out in competition with each other is the best recipe for keeping the country together. There is at least a little to be said for high school activities making the competition a bit less intense and bringing people of different groups closer together.

20 posted on 11/24/2005 6:19:00 PM PST by x
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To: okie01
If a farmer puts all of his livestock out into one pasture, at the end of the day he will find the sheep with the sheep, the goats with the goats, the pigs with the pigs, the cattle with the cattle.

Your analogy is terribly flawed. You put 20 different kinds of dogs in a field and they will all play with each other.

21 posted on 11/24/2005 6:22:09 PM PST by staytrue
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To: Qwertrew; Sonny M
How about a "Black Power" election ticket for 2008: Thomas Sowell/Walter Williams?
22 posted on 11/24/2005 6:33:35 PM PST by tarheelswamprat
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To: Qwertrew
Sowell...what a voice of reason.

That he truly is. There are three individuals whose works changed my political and social worldviews: Dr. Thomas Sowell, Dr. Milton Friedman, and Rush Limbaugh.


23 posted on 11/24/2005 6:34:55 PM PST by rdb3 (Wheelchair? What wheelchair?)
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To: Sonny M

Thanks for posting the great Sowell article. It's a lesson in human nature that we could all well remember.


24 posted on 11/24/2005 6:36:56 PM PST by WatchingInAmazement ("Nothing is more expensive than cheap labor," prof. Vernon Briggs, labor economist Cornell Un.)
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To: DogBarkTree
The weak parents feel it's more important that their coddled brats feel good about themselves than put in the work and study like the Asian kids.

We don't send Tonto Junior to public school, but if we did, I'd want it to be one like these folks are "fleeing."

I know this is anecdotal, but Junior's piano teacher is an American of Korean heritage. She has very high expectations of her students, and they do a great deal of work on technique, theory, etc. It's not just "open the lesson book and move your fingers." At recitals and competitions, you can tell which ones study with her simply because they are superior to others of the same age and experience.

I have a similar tale about his Tae Kwan Do instructor.

I think the Asian success story has a lot to do with expectations that the child will succeed, and the child being equipped to do well.

It's not an ethnic secret. It's common sense.

25 posted on 11/24/2005 6:40:26 PM PST by TontoKowalski
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To: staytrue
Your analogy is terribly flawed. You put 20 different kinds of dogs in a field and they will all play with each other.

But I didn't mention dogs, did I?


26 posted on 11/24/2005 6:46:05 PM PST by okie01 (The Mainstream Media: IGNORANCE ON PARADE)
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To: AZRepublican
I'd love to see a George Allen/Thomas Sowell ticket :-)

I have an open mind, but would you mind tell me why you are enthusiastic for George Allen? I really want to know what qualities you gauge him to have.

27 posted on 11/24/2005 7:18:45 PM PST by ontos-on
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Ashkenazi Jews & their mother. Image hosted by Photobucket.com
28 posted on 11/24/2005 8:02:23 PM PST by Captiva (DVC)
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To: okie01

According to your analogy, whites are like sheep, asians like goats, blacks like pigs, etc.

I say that is stupid.


29 posted on 11/24/2005 8:16:32 PM PST by staytrue
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To: staytrue

Sheep, goats, piga and cattle are all different species.

Dogs are members of a single species, as are humans.

Human races are much closer to the different breeds of dogs, although of course not nearly so diverse. I have never noticed any tendency of dogs to prefer the company of the same breed. I don't think they notice.


30 posted on 11/24/2005 9:00:03 PM PST by Restorer (Illegitimati non carborundum)
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To: Sonny M

"A few years of her son playing soccer while the Asian kids were hitting the books would be bound to create academic disparities."

Do ya think? It's called priorities. The parents can't be all that sharp if they can't figure it out.


31 posted on 11/24/2005 9:14:17 PM PST by Felis_irritable
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To: okie01

perhaps you should read post 30 also


32 posted on 11/24/2005 9:16:24 PM PST by staytrue
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To: Sonny M

But the protest (by moving out) against improving educational standards reminds me of everybody clamoring to fixi Social Security before it goes broke. When President Bush tried to do just that, he got shot down.

Lets make up our minds, folks!


33 posted on 11/25/2005 4:52:17 AM PST by RoadTest (I am come - - that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind.)
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To: Sonny M

*


34 posted on 11/25/2005 4:53:52 AM PST by Sam Cree (absolute reality)- "Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one." Albert Einstein)
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To: Sonny M
parents had problems with the schools becoming to academic focused and emphasising math and science instead of "all around" learning

"All around learning" -- the spin on public education.

35 posted on 11/25/2005 5:04:51 AM PST by GVnana
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To: wallace144
Shhhhh.

If the lib social engineers find out about this they will make monkeys out of us stakeholders. :-)
36 posted on 11/25/2005 5:08:02 AM PST by cgbg (MSM and Democratic treason--fifty years and counting...)
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To: staytrue
According to your analogy, whites are like sheep, asians like goats, blacks like pigs, etc.

I say that is stupid.

Please. You are reading something into the analogy that is not there.

37 posted on 11/25/2005 11:20:18 AM PST by okie01 (The Mainstream Media: IGNORANCE ON PARADE)
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To: rdb3; All

BOTH Rush and Sowell are going to be on FOX NEWS today- somewhere between 5:30 and 7...

FYI:)

Sowell is just so SANE.


38 posted on 11/25/2005 11:22:14 AM PST by SE Mom (God Bless those who serve..)
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To: rdb3; All

BIG ooops! That's SATURDAY- not today...so sorry.

These 4 day weekends make my brain into mush..


39 posted on 11/25/2005 11:23:51 AM PST by SE Mom (God Bless those who serve..)
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To: SE Mom

I think there is also a cspn special on Sowell on Saturday.


40 posted on 11/25/2005 11:29:06 AM PST by KC Burke (Men of intemperate minds can never be free....)
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Comment #41 Removed by Moderator

To: staytrue

But some of the dogs, maybe just two in a mixed bunch of dogs, will assume leadership and become the "pack leaders." The rest will accept that leadership until one of the "pack" may fight to supplant a leader. Happens all the time with dogs (and their ancestors the wolves). My huge black Belgian sheep dog merely had to show up among other dogs and they all immediately seemed to recognize him as their logical leader. One low growl and they fell in line and stayed clear of him. Most people avoided and showed fear around him. The only people that needed to be afraid were those that tried to break into our yard and house. They left running and bleeding..


42 posted on 11/25/2005 12:32:00 PM PST by Paulus Invictus
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To: Paulus Invictus
The only people that needed to be afraid were those that tried to break into our yard and house. They left running and bleeding..

This government could take some lessons from your dog!

43 posted on 11/25/2005 7:34:31 PM PST by WatchingInAmazement ("Nothing is more expensive than cheap labor," prof. Vernon Briggs, labor economist Cornell Un.)
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