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White Guilt = Black Power
The Wall Street Journal ^ | Shelby Steele

Posted on 01/07/2002 8:35:06 PM PST by VinnyTex

Edited on 04/22/2004 11:45:52 PM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]

By Shelby Steele. Mr. Steele, a research fellow at the Hoover Institution, is author of "A Dream Deferred: The Second Betrayal of Black Freedom in America" (HarperCollins, 1998).

There should be many more imbroglios like the one currently playing out at Harvard University, enough for America to finally understand that white guilt is exactly the same thing as black power. But it is testament to the daunting power of white guilt that confrontations like this one happen so rarely.


(Excerpt) Read more at interactive.wsj.com ...


TOPICS: Editorial; News/Current Events
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1 posted on 01/07/2002 8:35:06 PM PST by VinnyTex
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To: VinnyTex
Shelby Steele is a SANE black man....and I hope he has protection.
2 posted on 01/07/2002 8:39:04 PM PST by goodnesswins
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To: VinnyTex
Mr. Steele does not mince words - or need to. Interesting that some Latinos are trying to "coattail" this imbroglio for there own "reparations" - but then their solidarity with blacks was evident in the Rodney King riots in L.A. - they were so outraged by the mistreatment of Rodney that 30% of the rioters were Latinos...
3 posted on 01/07/2002 8:43:58 PM PST by 185JHP
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To: VinnyTex
An outstanding summary of the entire corrupt race dance.

And he points clearly to the only way out -- equal standards, equal treatment, equal justice.

4 posted on 01/07/2002 8:45:26 PM PST by Interesting Times
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To: VinnyTex
How cute! The WSJ attempts to avoid the racism charge by getting a black to write the article.
5 posted on 01/07/2002 9:04:08 PM PST by atafak
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To: Interesting Times
I love it! You can subsidize a professional malcontent, but there's no pleasing him. Sooner or later, it will be your turn to be vilified. That's too simple a truth for liberal eggheads to comprehend. Let them cannibalize each other.
6 posted on 01/07/2002 9:06:41 PM PST by TONEMAN
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To: atafak
The WSJ attempts to avoid the racism charge

Are you suggesting the Wall Street Journal is racist?

7 posted on 01/07/2002 9:11:26 PM PST by VinnyTex
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To: VinnyTex
No. I'm suggesting that "This is how the vacuum in white authority becomes cancerous."
8 posted on 01/07/2002 9:17:53 PM PST by atafak
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To: atafak
How do you get a black to do that? That is a rediculous statement atafak.
9 posted on 01/07/2002 9:21:23 PM PST by A CA Guy
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To: atafak
I'm suggesting that "This is how the vacuum in white authority becomes cancerous."

I see your point. Any number of white conservative thinkers could have written this same column. But the WSJ chose to publish the formulations of a black man, as if his color lends his words even more authority.

10 posted on 01/07/2002 9:36:24 PM PST by okie01
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To: okie01
But the WSJ chose to publish the formulations of a black man, as if his color lends his words even more authority.

Let's not play their game.

This is an excellent article, not a mediocre one published because of the race of the writer.

11 posted on 01/07/2002 10:35:56 PM PST by Interesting Times
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To: VinnyTex
Morning bump.
12 posted on 01/08/2002 1:24:03 AM PST by TroutStalker
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To: TroutStalker
And another......
13 posted on 01/08/2002 4:31:18 AM PST by TomServo
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To: VinnyTex
One more bump...
14 posted on 01/08/2002 6:01:23 AM PST by TomServo
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To: VinnyTex
Some Ivy Leaguers believe that Cornell West is considered "eminent" in the Ivy world because he is a caricature. Can you imagine them passing up Julian Bond or Andrew Young for a aging rapper?
15 posted on 01/08/2002 6:10:11 AM PST by AppyPappy
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To: All
Can anyone explain the value of a degree in African-American studies (or Women's studies, Hispanic studies, little green men from mars studies, etc.), other than a jobs program for minority professors who couldn't get a real degree?

Guess I must be a racist.

16 posted on 01/08/2002 6:39:34 AM PST by consultant
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To: atafak
WHADDAYANUTZ??????????????????????????????????

WSJ isn't allowed to publish articles by blacks???????????????????????????????????????????????????

GO AWAY.,,,please.

17 posted on 01/08/2002 6:46:17 AM PST by Neets
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To: VinnyTex
So whites have made it socially virtuous to defer and stand aside as institutions erode.

And when whites are silent, black mediocrity is no deterrent to black advancement.

So, whites are damned if they do or don't capitulate. Seems it's time to just do what's fair and right, then allow people to get glad in the same pants they got mad in.

18 posted on 01/08/2002 6:49:48 AM PST by Razz Barry
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To: VinnyTex
White Guilt

"Just say no." It's not easy to do where I live. Fortunately I am not that ambitious.

19 posted on 01/08/2002 6:54:06 AM PST by Stentor
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To: Razz Barry
Why should whites get involved in the first place? No matter what we do or don't do it'll never be enough for the racial con artists. Let them go tend to their own affairs and leave us the hell alone.
20 posted on 01/08/2002 6:58:11 AM PST by goldstategop
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To: VinnyTex
bttt
21 posted on 01/08/2002 6:58:59 AM PST by FairWitness
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To: VinnyTex
Yet in a field like jazz, where white guilt does not intercede, black excellence is the norm.

True, but when it does intercede (in jazz or blues or in what used to be called R'n'B,) the results are no different than elsewhere: mediocrity. This is a minor correction to an otherwise excellent article (as usual from Shelby Steele.)

22 posted on 01/08/2002 7:17:25 AM PST by Revolting cat!
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To: VinnyTex
Whites in the USA have become so weakened by this need. I never realized until I was middle aged that many many people actually feed off of this guilt within themselves and use the impulse to redress this guilt as means of feeling better about themsleves. It is a primary component in the idealism of youth. Recognizing a wrong, feeling responsible, either doing something about it or as in most cases thinking about doing something about it is all one needs to feel better and kick up their sense of self virtue.

This entire mass neurosis which infects many of our so called intelligentsia disproportionately is likely to be our ruin if we don't discard our fear and stand up for common sense and our culture. I do not know of an historical precedence involving mass guilt and it's accompanying weaknesses that has destroyed a culture in the way we are undermining our own now.

23 posted on 01/08/2002 7:33:22 AM PST by wardaddy
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To: consultant
Can anyone explain the value of a degree in African-American studies

At the PhD level, you can maybe get a job in the African-American Studies department at the local university. Below that level, you are qualified to ask "would you like fries with that?"

24 posted on 01/08/2002 7:46:52 AM PST by FreedomPoster
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Comment #25 Removed by Moderator

To: austinTparty
A reciprocol bump to you sweetie.
26 posted on 01/08/2002 7:57:04 AM PST by Neets
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To: Interesting Times; mrustow
I think the fact that the WSJ ran this column is a sign that the time of the white guilt-black power con game is almost up. It will certainly give businessmen the courage to buck it.
27 posted on 01/08/2002 8:26:14 AM PST by aristeides
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To: AppyPappy
Julian Bond is the ultimate lightweight, whose "star" status in the civil rights crowd remains a mystery. At last report, Mr. Bond was on the faculty at the University of Virginia, teaching some junk courses in the African-American studies program. However, according to press reports, the position for Mr. Bond was essentially a "make work" position. With his political career over, Mr. Bond needed a job, and some bleeding hearts a UVa created a spot for him. Needless to say, Mr. Bond (who only has a bachelor's degree) was unqualified for his position.

By comparison, Andrew Young was a successful mayor of Atlanta. And, if you haven't noticed, you don't see Andrew Young hanging around with Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, or for that matter, Julian Bond.

28 posted on 01/08/2002 9:05:16 AM PST by Spook86
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To: aristeides; atafak
Thanks for the ping, ari. atafak, you are absolutely right. The WSJ editors hedged their bets, and thus undermined their own moral authority, by having a black write this piece. This was a classic case of "our blacks" vs. "their blacks." White "conservatives" always feel the need to quote Thomas Sowell, Walter Wiliams, Steele (who is himself an intellectual lightweight), et al. A piece like this had to be written by a white. But when do you see "conservative" publications publish white writers attacking black racism?

Whites simply come to a place with blacks where they feel no authority to speak or judge and where they sense a great risk of being seen as racist.

I would revise Steele's equation: White Fear = Black Power.

See also:

Heroes and Heels of 2001: Race Hoaxes 'R Us

Heroes and Heels of 2001: The Antiversity and Edworld

29 posted on 01/08/2002 2:27:44 PM PST by mrustow
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To: mrustow
White Fear = Black Power.

Fear of what, though? We're certainly not going to be executed, or shipped off to some concentration camp. We're probably just going to suffer some obloquy. At the worst, we will lose our jobs. Given the example of the courage with which some heroes resisted the real threat of totalitarian regimes, how can we allow such flimsy threats to intimidate us?

30 posted on 01/08/2002 2:40:59 PM PST by aristeides
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To: Interesting Times
"This is an excellent article, not a mediocre one published because of the race of the writer."

I quite agree. And I didn't mean to suggest otherwise.

Point being, some will suggest otherwise.

31 posted on 01/08/2002 2:54:37 PM PST by okie01
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To: aristeides
As anyone who has been reading the WSJ for a while knows, the editorial page of the paper hasn't shied from, well, uncomfortable truths. And the assertions (of others) suggesting that the WSJ somehow "assigned" this piece to a black for reasons of political correctness are pure malarkey. Shelby Steele writes regularly for the Wall Street Journal. His articles are always insightful and on the mark. Finally, who gives a fog about the skin color of the author?! But then, isn't that one of the things the author is talking about?!
32 posted on 01/08/2002 2:58:53 PM PST by Revolting cat!
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To: aristeides
I don't know about Cambridge, but in New York, it's also physical fear. White folks in these parts have all the courage of certain poultry breeds. And physical fear notwithstanding, it's not just the fear of being fired (which to many white folks ranks up there with the fear of death), but the fear of being whitelisted and never working again.

However, none of the foregoing detracts from your point. Americans these days are not the heroic nation they once were. Consider how much of war planning involves avoiding situations in which American boys might end up in body bags.

33 posted on 01/08/2002 2:59:36 PM PST by mrustow
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To: Revolting cat!
Can you recall WSJ editorial pieces attacking black racism written by whites?
34 posted on 01/08/2002 3:01:02 PM PST by mrustow
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To: VinnyTex
Here is Pat Buchanan's article published today:

January 8, 2002 - WorldNetDaily.Com

How to mau-mau a Harvard don
By Patrick J. Buchanan

For students interested in learning how to conduct a first-class shakedown, few finer examples exist than the recent de-pantsing of the president of Harvard, Larry Summers. A thing of beauty it was, and here is how it went down.

Last month, Summers called in the highly-paid star of his black studies department, Cornel West, to dress him down. West, said Summers, was not devoting full time to teaching, was giving half his students A's, had just signed on as chair of Al Sharpton's presidential campaign and had put out a hip- hop rap CD the lyrics to which would have embarrassed Snoop Doggy Dog. Here is a partial rendition:

"From the heights of rich African humanity, to the depths of sick American barbarity, in the whirlwinds of white supremacy, black people preserved their sanity and dignity."

Feeling dissed, West – one of only 14 on Harvard's 2,000-person faculty to carry the title "university professor" – let drop a threat that he might just jump over to Princeton and take the rest of the all-stars in the black studies department with him.

Instead of telling West to take a hike, Summers chilled. So it was that on New Year's Day, that inveterate pair of shakedown artists, Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, arrived at Harvard to lay down surrender terms to Summers.

"There are two issues here," said Jesse, "one of academic freedom, and the other of affirmative action. We had Cornel West leaving a meeting with Mr. Summers feeling aggrieved. And (Summers), at his inaugural address, was not forthcoming about the role of affirmative action, which helped establish this DuBois Institute." By week's end, writes columnist Rod Dreher, Jesse and Al had turned "the famously ferocious Larry Summers into the Ivy League equivalent of a prison bride."

According to Professor William Julius Wilson, who also threatened to walk, Summers apologized, committed himself to greater "diversity" (more black students) and promised to keep his hands off the DuBois Institute.

As an example of Ivy League cravenness in the face of minority mau-mauing, Summers' capitulation is hard to top, though most Americans probably would not care if the gang at the DuBois Institute had looted Harvard's endowment and used the cash to buy an NFL franchise.

After all, Harvard is hardly representative of America – as one graduate, an ex- congressman, noted in the title of his book, "Harvard Hates America." Why else would Harvard name a school for Dr. W. E. B. DuBois, who gave up his U.S. citizenship, joined the Communist Party, praised Stalin as "a great man" and won the Lenin Prize after applauding Stalin's murder of 7 million Ukrainians.

Yet there is an issue here that ought to concern Middle America. For Harvard and the Ivy League have become the major access roads to power in America, and these roads are being closed off to ethnic Catholics and white Christians.

A few years back, Harvard graduate Ron Unz wrote in the Wall Street Journal about the admissions policies at his alma mater and the student body it produced. With affirmative action for preferred minorities and set-asides for children of alumni and faculty, and for foreign students and athletes, Harvard's student body, said Unz, had begun to look like the Greenwich Village Democratic Club.

According to Unz, 15 percent of Harvard's student body is Hispanic or black, 20 percent is Asian, 25 to 33 percent is Jewish, but only 25 percent comes from that 75 percent of America that is white and Christian. Christians are being frozen out of the elite schools that control the access to power in a nation that Christians, primarily, built.

But, in challenging this Ivy League bigotry, Republicans have shown all the courage of Larry Summers. Nevertheless, Congress ought to demand that the Department of Education require all Ivy League schools to report annually on the religious and ethnic composition of their faculties and student bodies, and, if Unz's percentages hold, should be asked what they are doing to end this discrimination. After all, if it is illegal for Irish cops to get their kids preferences, why is it OK for Harvard professors?

And if the Ivy League fails to take corrective action, federal funds should be cut off until the reverse discrimination ends, and the student bodies and faculties start to look just a little more like America.

Unfortunately, ours has become a country where those who preach loudest about injustice and persecution turn out to be its most unexcelled practitioners, once they get into the driver's seat.

-----------------

35 posted on 01/08/2002 3:07:11 PM PST by MadelineZapeezda
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To: VinnyTex
Awesome article. Painfully honest. I'd like to have this article distributed to all able minded black men who still consider themselves victims.
36 posted on 01/08/2002 3:09:57 PM PST by gohabsgo
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To: VinnyTex
Awesome article. Painfully honest. I'd like to have this article distributed to all able minded black men who still consider themselves victims.
37 posted on 01/08/2002 3:10:48 PM PST by gohabsgo
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To: consultant
Can anyone explain the value of a degree in African-American studies ....

I cann't remember who, but I remember reading some conservative saying that these studies can be worthwhile if students were first given a strong foundation of Western Civilization/History, by which they could compare other cultures/subcultures. Of course, that will never happen on today's closed minded colleges.

38 posted on 01/08/2002 3:26:25 PM PST by Sci Fi Guy
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To: mrustow
Can you recall WSJ editorial pieces attacking black racism written by whites?

No, I can't, but I have seen letters to the editor in WSJ doing it. (There might have been editorials on these topics, but probably not as strongly worded as this article.) I'll concede your point, though.

I do think however, that what we're seeing is a social taboo that is not limited to white vs black issues and is only vaguely related to the white guilt thing. Have you ever heard non-Jewish comedians tell jokes about Jews? (I know there aren't many of those!) Do we need other examples? There may be jokes about Italians or other ethnic groups, but serious discussions of such groups' internal problems are not allowed, unless the speaker/writer is a member of the group. I even suspect this type of taboo is common in other countries.

39 posted on 01/08/2002 3:27:54 PM PST by Revolting cat!
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To: VinnyTex
White guilt has been a black-enabler for something like 40 years now.
40 posted on 01/08/2002 3:33:53 PM PST by Don Myers
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To: Revolting cat!; mrustow
It's one thing not to be allowed to crack jokes about a group that (like the Jews) has foibles and (arguably) excessive power. It's quite another not to be allowed to say anything about a group that (like the blacks) presents a threat to life and limb because of its inordinate propensity to crime.
41 posted on 01/08/2002 3:34:45 PM PST by aristeides
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To: goldstategop
"Let them go tend to their own affairs and leave us the hell alone."

But, they won't. They want to eat your dinner.

42 posted on 01/08/2002 3:35:47 PM PST by Don Myers
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To: VinnyTex
Shelby Steele has put his finger on the basis for the whole rigamarole of liberal patronization of blacks - white elites escape blame for black underperformance by abandoning standards while pretending not to do so. This has nothing to do with the real developmental needs of blacks, but rather serves as an easy out for the elites who seek to maintain their moral authority as leaders.

Then along comes Summers who commits a revolutionary act: he calls (privately) on a very out of line Cornel West to get back to his proper work (rather than putting out hiphop albums, inane commentary on 9/11, and consorting with racial arsonists like Farrakhan and Sharpton, he should be writing more of his unreadable, cliche ridden books) West takes it public in a power play, knowing that the whole preference establishment will treat the idea of holding a black to account as a threat to their shtick. They demand that he endorse "affirmative action." He responds only with a statement on "diversity," which is emphatically not a victimhood rationale. Diversity can mean many things. Maybe even someday it could even mean intellectual diversity, as opposed to mere skin color difference. This whole business has yet to play itself out. But in the meantime, the unthinkable has occurred. The President of Harvard has said in effect that there are standards, and they apply also to blacks. West has gotten a lot of publicity of an unfavorable nature. The members of the black studies department look like a bunch of spoiled babies. And the public's attention has been called to the indefensible practices that have been going on in higher education.

43 posted on 01/08/2002 3:43:24 PM PST by thucydides
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To: consultant
Can anyone explain the value of a degree in African-American studies (or Women's studies, Hispanic studies, little green men from mars studies, etc.), other than a jobs program for minority professors who couldn't get a real degree?

Sure! If you plan to knock over liquor stores for a livin.

44 posted on 01/08/2002 3:46:02 PM PST by VinnyTex
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To: thucydides
I agree. I think it's significant that Summers did not, as he was called upon to do, express any approval of "affirmative action." I am still inclined to think that what he did was courageous, especially for a Clintonista.
45 posted on 01/08/2002 3:50:45 PM PST by aristeides
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To: Spook86
Julian Bond is the ultimate lightweight, whose "star" status in the civil rights crowd remains a mystery. At last report, Mr. Bond was on the faculty at the University of Virginia, teaching some junk courses in the African-American studies program.... essentially a "make work" position.... Needless to say, Mr. Bond (who only has a bachelor's degree) was unqualified for his position.

How about this solution to the mystery: The young Bond had leading man looks, and a good voice. Thanks for pointing out his, er, qualifications. For a white to even be considered for a full-time faculty position, he would have to have a Ph.D. and publications.

Oops! My boo-boo. Whites who are just as unqualified -- according to academia's lights -- as Bond may also get full-time positions, as long as they too are political hacks. See "Gore, Albert."

Excellent example, in contrasting Andy Young. His rep as mayor of Atlanta was that he was always wheeling and dealing, to keep business ... busy. Unlike Bond, who is chairman of the board of an extortion ring, that lives to stop business cold.

46 posted on 01/08/2002 3:51:10 PM PST by mrustow
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To: Don Myers
Along those lines, if you haven't seen this, check it out:

Guests from Hell: The NAACP's Shakedown of the Hospitality Industry

47 posted on 01/08/2002 4:11:04 PM PST by mrustow
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To: mrustow
Lets look at the big picture here. Shaking down the hospitality industry is only one phase of the war. We have a nation that is/was white and conservative in the majority of the people. You have a group of people who want to change society and take over its institutions. Lets just call that group leftists. The way that they have taken over other nations is through the same means that they have taken over this nation.

They took over the media and other institutions. They have been busily brainwashing the young. They have done all they can to divide and change the views of the larger ie majority group of people.

They have destroyed the morality system that did exist in this nation. We have become balkanized. They have brought in large groups of immigrants to further destroy the existing power structure. They have used the legal system to do what political means could not accomplish. They can do hit-and-run attacks because of the nature of the battleground. They have been able to silence their opponents by cries of racism and selfishness.

I heard Donna Shalala on a late night show when the Clintons first took office say that the Californians wanted to curtail the mass immigration of Mexicans because they were selfish. Maybe, the sheeple will awaken and see what has been happening in this country. Actually, the attacks on 9-11 have awaken some people. Maybe, they will stay awake.

48 posted on 01/08/2002 4:23:31 PM PST by Don Myers
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To: Don Myers
Actually, the attacks on 9-11 have awaken some people. Maybe, they will stay awake.

"Maybe" is the operative word. A lot of mainstream "conservatives" have proclaimed America as having retunred to reality and common sense morality since 911. These are the same guys who earlier saw press releases banning affirmative action in places like California, and declared victory over racial socialism. They are lazy and cowardly, which is one reason why this nation is the shambles it is. 911 was only the beginning, the first salvo, of a long fight. But these mainstream types, with their declarations of victory, are as much a danger as the obvious enemies. Imagine, if the Founding Fathers had had to count on mainstream "conservatives" back in '76!

49 posted on 01/08/2002 4:40:04 PM PST by mrustow
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To: Stentor
You are right. It's not guilt....it's fear that motivates such whites, fear of appearing to be racist, fear of looking into this country's mirror straight on.
50 posted on 01/08/2002 4:45:33 PM PST by wtc911
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