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A Facebook Engineer’s Plea for Political Diversity

Last year it was Google.  This year it is Facebook where industry norms of celebrating all forms of diversity—except that of thought—are being challenged. Brian Amerige, a senior software engineer at the company, has authored a document entitled “We Have a Problem with Political Diversity” in which he presents his concerns:

We are a political monoculture that’s intolerant of different views.  We claim to welcome all perspectives, but are quick to attack—often in mobs—anyone who presents a view that appears to be in opposition to left-leaning ideology.  We throw labels that end in *obe and *ist at each other, attacking each other’s character rather than their ideas.

We do this so consistently that employees are afraid to say anything when they disagree with what’s around them politically.  HR has told me that this is not a rare concern, and I’ve personally gotten over a hundred messages to that effect.  Your colleagues are afraid because they know that they—and not their ideas—will be attacked.  They know all the talk of “openness to different perspectives” does not apply to causes of “social justice,” immigration, “diversity,” and “equality.”  On this [sic] issues, you can either keep quiet or sacrifice your reputation and career.

Amerige went on to form an internal discussion group for employees who are “interested in helping make Facebook a company that’s more tolerant and active-minded about different political and ideological perspectives.” The group’s most important rule is that “if you attack a person’s character, rather than their ideas, you will be banned.”  Over 100 other employees have joined the group.  So far, Amerige has not been fired from Facebook as James Damore was fired from Google a year ago.

It is easy to see this case as a simple matter of history repeating itself, yet there are key differences between the two cases, due to which, Amerige is poised to challenge the industry to tolerate political dissent.

The federal law concerning the right—or lack thereof—of Damore and Amerige to have the discussions that they had in the workplace is the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).  Section 7 of this statute grants all employees in the United States the right to engage in what is known as protected concerted activity, joining together with their colleagues to advocate for improvements to their working conditions:

Employees shall have the right to self-organization…and to engage in other concerted activities for the purpose of collective bargaining or other mutual aid or protection…

With over 100 other employees joining Amerige, there is no question that his activity is concerted. But is it protected?

The NLRA is enforced by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), a government agency with quasi-judicial powers to rule on whether an employer has violated the rights of its employees.  Damore filed a complaint last year claiming that his document constituted protected concerted activity and received a ruling from the NLRB that it did not. (Damore has subsequently filed a lawsuit—still pending—against Google, alleging that the company violated his rights under California state law.) After describing past cases in which employees “made debasing and sexually abusive remarks” or told a colleague to “come out of the closet” and in which the NLRB found this conduct to be unprotected on the grounds that it constituted discriminatory harassment, it ruled that Damore’s document was comparable:

The Charging Party’s use of stereotypes based on purported biological differences between women and men should not be treated differently than the types of conduct the Board found unprotected in these cases. [His] statements about immutable traits linked to sex—such as women’s heightened neuroticism and men’s prevalence at the top of the IQ distribution—were discriminatory and constituted sexual harassment, notwithstanding [his] effort to cloak [his] comments with “scientific” references and analysis, and notwithstanding [his] “not all women” disclaimers.

This ruling ought to send a chill down the spine of anyone who believes in free speech and an open society where scientific inquiry can be pursued without being stifled by dogma.  There is also a strong case to be made that it is legally wrong.

The Supreme Court has ruled that simply making a statement that a colleague finds offensive is not enough to constitute sexual harassment.  Rather, “it must be sufficiently severe or pervasive ‘to alter the conditions of [the victim’s] employment and create an abusive working environment.’”1  While the Court has held that derogatory statements about an employee’s gender can constitute sexual harassment, the case in question concerned remarks that were directed at a specific individual for the purposes of disparaging her, for example “You’re a woman, what do you know,” and “We need a man as the rental manager.”2  It is not alleged that Damore or any other Google engineer ever made such comments to their female colleagues, much less that such behavior took place on an ongoing, sustained basis as to qualify as “severe or pervasive.”  Indeed, the repeated denigration and even threats of violence against men and other “privileged” groups that were revealed at Google by Damore’s lawsuit are far more comparable to the comments about women that the Supreme Court held to constitute sexual harassment.

One can only wonder if the NLRB would reach the same conclusion if an employee was fired for discussing scientific research finding that innate factors account for or contribute to more men than women engaging in violence or having developmental disabilities.  Or is it only women who are seen as so fragile that it is necessary to censor scientific research the conclusions of which might be used to view their gender in anything other than the most positive light?  If it is the latter, then that is itself a discriminatory act that, coming from a government agency, would violate the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

To equate scientific research with harassment that is prohibited by law is a dangerous precedent. The NLRB places the word “scientific” in scare quotes, seemingly to imply that the research that Damore cites is not valid science. Yet, it is not the role of bureaucrats in the federal government with no scientific background to rule on what is or isn’t valid science.  The consensus of four scientists writing in Quillette at the time was that Damore’s presentation of the research was accurate.  The psychology professor Jordan Peterson of the University of Toronto also concurred.  Yet even if those ruling on the validity of Damore’s hypotheses were to be scientists, it would still be anti-scientific to censor dissenting views.  Those with the best credentials do not necessarily always hold the truth.  The great physicist Albert Einstein formulated his special theory of relativity not as a professor but while working as a clerk at the Swiss patent office.3

Several centuries earlier, Galileo Galilei was brought before the Inquisition and sentenced to a lifetime of house arrest for presenting the results of his research showing that the earth revolves around the sun.4  The First Amendment was adopted precisely to prevent this type of abuse of power, where the right of individuals to speak their mind freely as they see fit is suppressed when it is inconvenient for those in positions of authority, whether it be the Roman Catholic Church or 21st century diversity bureaucracies.  We have clearly progressed in that the sanctions at stake are solely economic and do not involve execution or (at least in the United States) imprisonment.  Yet, if we believe that we have moved beyond the mindset that gave rise to this sort of suppression, then the handling of cases such as this ought to give us reason to think twice.

Despite the deeply flawed reasoning that the NLRB used to permit Google to fire Damore, this decision does not necessarily mean that it would be permissible for Facebook to fire Amerige.  The NLRB was very explicit that Damore’s discussion of scientific research was the only portion of his document that they were holding to be unprotected:

The Employer demonstrated that the Charging Party was discharged only because of [his] unprotected discriminatory statements and not for expressing a dissenting view on matters affecting working conditions or offering critical feedback of its policies and programs, which were likely protected.  The Employer carefully tailored the message it used in discharging the Charging Party, as well as its follow-up message to all employees, to affirm their right to engage in protected speech while prohibiting discrimination or harassment.

Thus, if Damore had omitted the portions of his document discussing biological differences between the sexes and solely discussed the ways in which the working conditions at Google are hostile to employees of conservative political persuasions and his opposition to its affirmative action policies, then his document would have constituted protected concerted activity, and it would have been illegal for Google to fire him for it.  This is exactly what Amerige has done at Facebook.

Therefore, Amerige’s document makes an ideal test case to force the issue.  The executives at Facebook now have a choice before them: whether or not to fire or otherwise discipline Amerige.  If they choose not to, then dissent will continue to be expressed within their ranks, and they will have to contend with the reality that their workplace culture oriented toward “social justice” is not inclusive of all reasonable people as they portray it to be. Employees at other technology companies may be emboldened to take similar action at their workplaces, sending ripples throughout Silicon Valley and helping to alert the public to the serious problems that exist within our industry.

If they do choose to fire him, then he will be able to file a complaint with the NLRB and make a strong case that his firing is illegal, with the Damore decision as a precedent on his side.  This will force the NLRB to show its true colors: Were they acting in good faith and applying the law as they interpreted it, however severely misguided that interpretation might be?  Or were they simply concocting a justification for the firing to avoid upsetting social justice activists, only to overturn that precedent a year later when it ceased to be useful for that purpose?  If it is the latter, then the American people should recognize this for what it is and demand that our government uphold the rule of law under an objective standard.


The author is a software engineer. Gideon Scopes is a pseudonym. Given the current climate surrounding political expression in the technology industry, his real name has been withheld.

References:
1 Meritor Savings Bank v. Vinson, 477 U.S. 57 (1986)

2 Harris v. Forklift Systems, Inc., 510 U.S. 17 (1993)
3 Isaacson, Walter.  Einstein: His Life and Universe.  New York: Simon & Schuster; 2008.  704 p.
4 Bachrach, Deborah.  The Inquisition.  San Diego (CA): Lucent Books; 1995.  127 p.

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The author is a software engineer. Gideon Scopes is a pseudonym. Given the current climate surrounding political expression in the technology industry, his real name has been withheld.

59 Comments

  1. The reason there is no political diversity is because there is already consensus. Most anti-egalitarian (absolute) beliefs are not by the major players of any discussion of importance. Not to suggest that I don’t disagree with absolute egalitarian principles.

    • Roger the Shrubber says

      The author contends that there is diversity, only it is suppressed because of the repercussion of going against the political consensus.

      • There is diversity on every topic under the sun. My point is that all talk of (for example) group differences is shuttered by all but the gamma players for a reason. It is discarded by the power brokers for a reason.

    • Mike Matesky says

      Your first sentence seems to be a tautology rather than an explanation. In any event, it sounds like there is only the appearance of consensus, enforced by punishing those who publicly dissent.

    • Ash D says

      “The reason there is no political diversity is because there is already consensus.”

      North Korea works in a remarkably similar way!

  2. Jesois says

    It is brutal that people (like the author) feel compelled to write under pseudonym for fear of repercussions, but the climate of intolerance – unfortunately – leads to this.

    • PubliusJr says

      And before long, pseudonyms won’t work either. There is software out there which, given a writing sample as long as this, can probably figure out who you are if you have any work published anywhere under your own name. It’s an easier problem than face recognition, and that’s already in play as a tool of oppression (the real thing, not what the political left means when they say it — search “Uighurs”).

      Pseudonyms were an essential tool in the writings of the American founders. We break anonymity at our peril in the long run.

      • D.B. Cooper says

        @PubliusJr

        I’m sorry, but I have to know. Are you junior to the Publius of the Claremont Institute ‘Flight 93 Election’ clan, or junior to the Publius Decius Mus, son of Quintus, of the plebian gens Decia, Roman consul clan? It’s really of no consequence either way, save as an epilogue to my own curiosity.

  3. There’s a factual error here. Galileo presented no evidence for heliocentrism — all his observations were explicable on the Tychonic model of geocentrism. No such evidence would emerge until almost a century after Galileo’ death. Galileo’s main ‘evidence’ was the tides, but even at the time, people figured out that this was bogus. In fact, recent research into the history of science shows that the scientific evidence was stacked against Galileo well into the 18th century (Graney, Christopher M. Setting aside all authority: Giovanni Battista Riccioli and the science against Copernicus in the age of Galileo. University of Notre Dame Pess, 2015). The tables would only turn once Newton developed his theory of gravity.

    The reason for him being placed under hour arrest (at least this article doesn’t fall into the fiction that he was executed/tortured/shown the instruments of tortured) is because he used his (at the time) flawed theory that was still full of holes to reinterpret the Bible — and that was Church territory. While there are many cases of dogma being used to stifle intellectual progress, this is not one of them outside of popular myth. Otherwise great article.

    • Too many people view the Galileo event as evidence of the Church’s anti-science stand as if Galileo was tortured for challenging the church with a proven solid theory. The real reason he was ultimately convicted was for portraying his friend Pope Urban VIII as a blithering fool in his book Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems. It wasn’t about the science really…

      • Yep, that. And using his flawed theory of heliocentrism, which wouldn’t have any evidence until almost a century after he died, to reinterpret the Bible. Mostly this.

        Academia has documented this myth pretty well, it’s just sad people flatly ignore the evidence. The myth of Galileo is refuted by historians like James Hannam in his The Genesis of Science pp. 303-344, as well as in Ronald Numbers (ed.) Galileo Goes to Jail and Other Myths about Science and Religion (Harvard University Press 2009), pp. 68-78. None of this stuff is a secret.

    • Cerastes says

      “Scientific” Christian – Firstly, show some actual evidence that Galileo’s condemnation was *not* due to him holding Copernican beliefs (and from a valid source, not some Christian site trying to re-write history to erase their mistakes). This claim you are making is a fringe theory that’s got about as much legitimate support as “All politicians are shape-shifting alien lizard people”.

      And that the evidence of the time was stacked against him was, honestly, irrelevant, as the Church had no business interfering with legitimate scientific discourse, even if it had seized that power illegitimately at the time. THAT is why Galileo’s story persists, as a warning for what happens when religious groups are given power to control scientific conversation.

      • “Scientific” Christian – Firstly, show some actual evidence that Galileo’s condemnation was *not* due to him holding Copernican beliefs (and from a valid source, not some Christian site trying to re-write history to erase their mistakes). This claim you are making is a fringe theory that’s got about as much legitimate support as “All politicians are shape-shifting alien lizard people”.

        What I’m saying is the consensus of all historians of science. The fact that you’re flatly unfamiliar with the academic literature isn’t my fault. Copernicus himself was supported by the Pope of his time, Pope Paul III, even dedicating his principle work of heliocentrism De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres) to him.

        The situation with Galileo was essentially the same. He was supported by Pope Urban VIII alongside the Jesuits into publishing his work on heliocentrism, but it all came crashing down when he started using this unsubstantiated theory to reinterpret the Bible. Historians of science have been working a long time to correct popular myths so heavily inundated with fiction like what the myths about the Galileo trial. Since you seem to be unaware of the scientific consensus, let me just point you to a book edited by the renowned historian of, Ronald Numbers, fantastically titled Galileo Goes to Jail and Other Myths about Science and Religion (Harvard University Press 2009). The chapter on Galileo is pretty good — Galileo, in fact, received unprecedentedly good treatment for someone receiving accusations such as him. James Hannam, in his The Genesis of Science (2011) — a book that has been nominated for two of the prestigious historical prizes, documents the Galileo trial, and how it was a political, not scientific, trial.

        And that the evidence of the time was stacked against him was, honestly, irrelevant, as the Church had no business interfering with legitimate scientific discourse, even if it had seized that power illegitimately at the time. THAT is why Galileo’s story persists, as a warning for what happens when religious groups are given power to control scientific conversation.

        No, the Galileo myths persist because of the fringe myths perpetuated by new atheists to try to conjure up the illusion of a historical conflict between science and religion.

      • Daniel says

        @Cerastes,
        Elevating the conversation, are we? Using quotation marks for someone’s name? Why not evaluate a comment on its merits?

    • azoomh says

      Galileo just got out of his lane a little bit. Giordano Bruno on the other side…burnt at the stake. I think many people confuse the two.

      • Yes, Bruno got the full treatment for believing in theological heresies (multiplicity of the world and non-virginity of Mary). The only reason, though, why Bruno is more well known than all the others who got burned for theology is because there’s a fiction attached to Bruno that he was a scientist/natural philosopher (he wasn’t, he was a mystic) and that he was killed for scientific reasons (also nonsense). Hence, a good ol’ popular myth to disparage the Catholic Church for its imagined oppression of science.

  4. Andrew says

    Great article! My question is, even if this group is able to go ahead, what will happen when the SJWs of FB hear something they don’t like (as happened to Damore at Google)?

  5. ga gamba says

    You’re appealing to the good will of many who have no good will; it’s all power politics.

    You want them to change? You have to hit them in the pocket by organising boycotts of their advertisers – start with the small businesses that are quick to bend. You may also buy stock and organise voting blocks to put allies on the corporate boards who will force senior management to adapt or be replaced.

  6. Kets70 says

    As I understand, Damore had already filed his law suit and dropped his NLRB complaint before the NLRB rejected his claim. This in itself was a departure from normal procedure (to still provide a judgment on a driedro complaint).

  7. The worst sin in the NLRB’s ruling was implying that he used the word “immutable traits”. These words are never used in Damore’s piece.

  8. Innominata says

    It’s really a catch-22 in Silicon Valley for people such as Damore et al. (European descent, straight, male … “ESM”):

    An ESM is only allowed to speak freely after he has proved his woke motives and character; but to prove woke motives and character one must say only politically correct ideology and nothing else.

    I’m fascinated by the extinction of prima facie good faith around here.** We seem to have lost the benefit of the doubt.

    The Bay Area Powers of Equity Outcome seem to treat Damore and many other ESMs as though their (to some) disagreeable ideas must stem from hateful character and motives. This move to prima facie bad faith is a worrisome diminishment of social capital to my eye, one that affects the well being of everyone, not just ESMs. It’s very hard to foster honest societal discourse, trust, and growth when many groups believe the motives of another boil down to oppression and selfishness, which, like original sin, they can struggle against but never vanquish.

    Many progressive and educated ESMs I speak with are all the way fed up with this horse-skit. They feel like they are getting Weinsteined (Bret, not Harvey), that their sincere and sometimes extensive efforts toward universal respect and good will are treated as insufficient and alloyed.

    They are “turtling”: no more mentoring women (too dangerous); no dating American women of any race (tired of being called “the patriarchy” in every difference of opinion); no more seeking diverse social groups (tired of “white people be all like …” tropes). Instead, comments such as, “You know that being born with a pink peener is not a crime in Russia? And they need software engineers …”

    **For the apotheosis, watch Jordan Peterson and Stephen Fry’s recent debate with Michelle Goldberg and Michael Erik Dyson on the topic of political correctness (on YouTube). Goldberg and Dyson spend most of their time impugning Peterson’s character and calling him names … and never getting around to political correctness. It’s a revealing dumpster fire.

  9. Farris says

    In cases of Defamation, “Truth” is a defense. In cases of Harassment, like Danmore’s, Truth is evidence of guilt. When one cites a fact or truth that is politically incorrect, which should prevail?
    Is truth more important than feelings? Doesn’t truth sometime hurt? Does citing a politically incorrect fact make one a harasser, racist, sexist, homophobe, ect..? Beware of citing unapproved authorities. Political correctness has evolved from politeness to dogma. Questioning that dogma can lead to ruination. The illustration of Galileo is directly on point. Galileo was a friend of the Church until he ran a foul of its tenets. Today, people like Danmore are persecuted for running afoul of secularist church doctrine.

  10. America is going to pot intellectually. Science deniers on the right. Science deniers on the left.

    On the right you have people denying climate science and evolution and on the left you have lawyers saying quoting psychology research is “discriminatory” (i.e. denying psychology). What utter codswallop! There needs to be a challenge to that ruling…

    • TarsTarkas says

      As long as there are no consequences to accusations of -phobe or -ism, the accusations will continue and increase in number and ferocity.

      • Nick Ender says

        Exactly. False accusations have only upside potential for the accuser. Even when an accusation is proven false the stink is still near impossible to wash off. You’re always suspect afterwards and new complaints will use old ones as evidence, despite their lack of merit. I have personally experienced this working at a university. One completely false, and vengeful sexual harassment accusation has left me vulnerable. HR thinks I’m a problem and other female subordinates I have “crossed” since have successfully used that complaint to manipulate me at work. Now I’m a supervisor in name only. With mostly female subordinates, I must allow them to behave, and perform, to whatever standards they see fit. It’s really brought the professionalism down in my department. We’re a joke now at my university. My bosses recommendation to me when I reported this to him was “just do the work yourself next time!” This is the #metoo era… or error!

        • Peter from Oz says

          Nick
          Can’t you turn the tables by accusing the women of sexual harrassment?

        • A great, contemporary example is the case of the Board of Elections in Randolph County Georgia last week. They hired a consultant to provide a list of polling places to close due to ADA violations and he provided 7 of 9. There was outrage. Those danged Republicans! Trying to suppress the minority vote! That was the accusation by all of the Left Wing Media and ACLU. Meanwhile the facts:

          In 2011, the DOJ sued Randolph County (and many others) for ADA violations in many public buildings, including dual-use Polling places.

          In July 2012, the DOJ reached a settlement agreement. The county would operate in good faith to begin remedy and report yearly. Now, this county only has 7500 residents, so they budgeted $30k/year for improvements — that doesn’t go far. The violations were things like door weight, paper towel holder height — but also wheelchair ramp slopes and parking lot accessible spot width/count/etc. $30k/year doesn’t go far when you have a lot of buildings. The county spent money at best use — like schools and courts, over places like Fire Dept. buildings — which were the polling places.

          In 2016, the DOJ sent a letter saying they no longer had to report yearly.

          The Board of Elections is nominated by the Board of Commissioners — an elected group that is bipartisan with several members winning their first elections in 2012 running on this ADA issue and you can find news articles quoting them in 2012.

          The settlement agreement did not mandate closure/without replacement, but one report from the time said the DOJ strongly suggested “moving.”

          So, 2018, it’s been a couple years without reports, the BoE brings in someone to get the current state. As a consultant myself, the easiest way is to get the list of ADA violations from 2011, look at the invoices for work 2012-present, and go “hmm, well this firestation was on the DOJ list, I see no work done, so list it.” The Tribal left, seeking evidence to justify the “GOP! EVIL!~!!” rhetoric simply goes into “he didn’t list out the violations!”

          So, was this bi-partisan commission seeking to disenfranchise their own voters as the Left suggests with their omissions of facts? Or was this a bipartisan board, actually acting in very good faith with their 5 year old DOJ settlement who fell into the MSM “OMG! TRUMP!” hysteria trap?

    • Farris says

      I am curious. How do you differentiate between a “denier” and a skeptic?

        • @Farris

          Exactly. I don’t see people on the right denying climate science. I see people on the right acknowledging the changing climate, while being skeptical that man’s activities are the primary driver (thereby granting man the ability to manipulate the climate in reverse), skeptical that the models being used are accurate enough to guide policy, and overall skeptical that the “solutions” all look remarkably like every other redistributionist endeavor of the left (globally).

          Further – the pronouncements of “settled science” or “the debate is over” coupled by the complete unwillingness to acknowledge even the existence of scientifically based, logical rebuttals to the climate warriors’ claims – gives many people even greater cause to be skeptical.

          There are many, many, many, many scientists with sound arguments against the severity of the problem and the efficacy of proposed policy solutions. Yet, the “debate is over” allows these people and their positions to be wholly dismissed.

          THAT is anti-science. And THAT comes from the left.

          • A good example is the “settled science” claims inability to reconcile the new findings about the co2 pump in the Indian ocean, or that the melting of the Antarctic glaciers being a result of magma flows under them versus the warming of air above (or of sunlight).

            I’m also curious — remember 40 years ago the mantra was about the Ozone hole? It’s now closing…could that have had an impact? We discontinued largescale use of chloroflourocarbons, fixed that, now temp goes up…hrmmmm….

            I for one am glad that science is never settled, or we’d still think the Earth was flag and the stars revolved around us. I recall a few short years ago the suspicion about the speed of light / relativity could be wrong based upon a result — turned out to be a timer problem in GPS, but there weren’t screams of heresy, only inquiring minds seeking to replicate/invalidate that finding. Discussion of replicate/invalidating findings these days has one branded a “denier.”

          • Peter from Oz says

            Isn’t it interesting that governments around the world only pay for research that supports man-made climate change which in turn calls for bigger government?
            Governments should be funding research by skeptics as well as those who believe in man-made climate change.
            Already we have seen vast amounts of taxpayers’ money wasted on subsidies for renewables which have forced the price of power to increase by a laerge amount. This has caused untold economic damage. Yet the politicians persist. It is very much like PC, a minority of loudmoth anti-intellectuals support it, and the polititicans, realising that they can gain more power by heeding that minority, keep appeasing the noisy minority.
            Sinistra delenda est

      • yandoodan says

        @Ferris, How do you differentiate between a “denier” and a skeptic?

        He is a denier. You are a skeptic. I am correct.

        • Farris says

          I am skeptical about a lot of things but willing to listen, learn and question. I can not speak anyone else.

  11. DocJones says

    While I’m completely on Damore’s side broadly and think his firing was ridiculous, there’s another relevant take on the NLRB ruling: an NLRB court, filled with conservative Republican appointments, were more lenient in taking Google’s explanation for their actions (“offensive gender stereotypes”) at face value rather than considering it as a matter of discussing work conditions. This is what usually happens, given how they’re more lenient

    Again: political diversity is good, Silicon Valley tech groupthink is bad, Damore’s science was fine. But there’s a compelling case to be made that the Trump NLRB is more interested in leniency towards business’s stated reasons for firing workers than a commitment to woke taboos.

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  14. So the right now wants big government regulation (the NLRB) to step in? I thought free markets were the cure for everything.

    • Fair point. Although, it’s less about hoping the NLRB steps in on any particular person’s behalf, and more about the unequal application of law (in this case, probably based on ideological discrimination), and seeing that as an injustice to be rectified.

      You can believe in small, but effective and fair government while simultaneously oppose unfair government, marked by unequal application of law,

    • DocJones says

      I was the guy who posted the NLRB comment above and it’s fine by me, I don’t consider myself on the right. I just believe in sound scientific evidence. 🙂

    • martti_s says

      Indians? Would that be the ones with spots or those with feathers?

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  16. Idiosyncratist says

    I trained as a journalist, can deal with different points of view and honestly do not care much about politics. But the monocultures of our tech overlords creep me out. Two observations:

    1. If Google were viewpoint-neutral, it might have fired Damore for asking evil questions, but it also would have fired his internal antagonist for posting his internal memo publicly so as to shame him and force the issue. For a platform that controls 80 percent of internet search not to have TRIED to look even-handed in the situation is disturbing.

    2. Virtually all my Facebook friends lean center left to hard left and many repost about their political enthusiasm/hatreds without consequence, but my one right-wing friend was driven off the site several times over two years, and clearly for his point of view; he finally abandoned the site, which presumably made Zuck et al happy. (I do not consult FB for political conversation or “news” and have deleted all such posts for years now, but still they come.) Again, it is hard to explain the site managers’ behavior as anything but politically motivated.

    Now our revenue-challenged media outlets seem to have gravitated to business models that gather unto themselves loyal subscribers who share a single point of view. If you look even occasionally at reader responses, you find increasing hostility when the NYT or WaPo or Politico offers up an idea that does not congratulate readers for their previously held opinions.

    Long story short, the tribalization of American politics is getting more pronounced. I used to believe that reasonable people could discuss matters on reasonable terms and without name-calling. I’ve come to doubt the premise. If you want to talk with me these days, well, you’ll find me in my own private silo.

  17. When the left says “diversity” they really mean “derma-diversity.” They are not just skin-obsessed. They are skin color obsessed.

    Call ’em on it by using the term “derma diversity.”

    • Very true. Look at the black-face outrage a while back about an african-american (aka, black) skinned stunt-double for an african-american (aka, black) actor. The stunt double’s pigmentation was lighter, so they used makeup to darken his skin to match the actor’s. Oh, the horror and outrage! If you only read the outrage, you’d think it was a white stunt double!

      President Obama had mixed-race parents, but he’s black. George Zimmerman has mixed race-parents, but he’s white?

  18. Bumbling Bee says

    We focus on Google, Facebook and the culture that exists in these businesses. But what I find most disturbing is the hundreds of people who have chosen self-censorship. These certainly aren’t the men who stormed the beaches of Normandy (Nor am I).

    You are what you do, acknowledge the truth about yourself. Ask yourself who you want to be.

    What kind of future do you want to have?

    Its never too late to find your courage.

  19. “The Charging Party’s use of stereotypes based on purported biological differences between women and men should not be treated…”

    Wait a minute. Who ever said that stereotypes were wrong? Any normal intelligent person (is that an oxymoron?) functioning in society sees stereotypes playing out all day long.

    • No more stereotypes! The use of statistical medians/means to describe a population shall no longer be tolerated!

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  21. martti_s says

    What scares me is the way these mammoths exercise political power without acknowledging it as such. It is not political to offer support to the Hillary campaign, it is not political to silence voices critical against mass immigration, black lists or Islamic extremism. It is a political statement to allow a conservative to speak or to quote his words, even in a critical context.
    It is not populism to whip up a tsunami of Twitter rage that can cost the victim his reputation and his work. It is populism to talk about the bluecollars, the other America of the rust belt or the silence of the crony capitalists.
    Maybe I am losing it or maybe the liars are getting so fearless that they know no limits any longer.
    It seems that there was something very bad cooking for a decade or so and not the lid is blowing off.

  22. Paulo José says

    Citing scientific evidence is not protected? It was citing scientific evidence that got him out? You can’t backup your views with scientific evidence because that puts you on disvantage and you’d be better off if you had not cited scientific evidence? What the heck? I’ve never seen a greater attack on science! We’re doomed, well never make it!

  23. Bumbling Bee says

    You silly rascals 8)

    Companies and business that chase away quality talent based on poorly evidenced and irrational twitter/social media mobbing are shipping productivity out their doors. Provided we can remain calm, this will sort itself out over time.

    An individual commitment from ourselves to respect due process and a commitment to truth and justice will surely guide us well.

    Businesses should have the freedom to fire employees for any or no reason.

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