Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Bill Bennett Cares About Black People

Whenever we hear from Bill Bennett, the one-time Republican cabinet member and all-time gambling great, it's usually a tasty addition to the political discourse. He is, as we're reminded constantly by the media, one of the Really Big Thinkers of the conservative side, a man who churns out books like a slot machine churns out quarters.

Here's his latest bon mot:
I do know that it's true that if you wanted to reduce crime, you could -- if that were your sole purpose, you could abort every black baby in this country, and your crime rate would go down. That would be an impossible, ridiculous, and morally reprehensible thing to do, but your crime rate would go down. So these far-out, these far-reaching, extensive extrapolations are, I think, tricky.
Yes. Tricky indeed.

And conservatives wonder why they have a problem appealing to African Americans. It's a real puzzler.

13 comments:

Mr Furious said...

He's onto something—just not the black part. The guy who wrote that book last year... [quick google search] ...damn, I can't find it or think of the title... Anyway this guy was a statistician (I think) who analyzed a bunch of data and came to a bunch of social and political conclusions—one of which was the legalization of abortion in the 70s led to the drop in crime eighteen years later. It made sense. It essentially took millions of unwanted kids (of all races) off the streets preemptively.

What the hell is the name of that book? It's one word that's a play on words...

alex supertramp said...

are you looking for Steven Levitt's Freakonomics? - reagardless, I'm going back to school to become a Freakonomist.....

ORF said...

Yes. Freakonomics. I read that book. Kitschy.

Now, let's talk about Bill Bennett: Do Conservatives just not think before opening their mouths? Or perhaps the better question would be: Do Conservatives just not think???

ORF said...

Ok, so I just read the call transcript and it's important to address the stupidity of the caller as well. The caller claims that had we NOT aborted those babies in the last 30 years, we'd have lots and lots more in social security money to be handing out. Ummm...except that, as Bennett rightly points out, a lot of those babies would have been born to single mothers who might have had to go on welfare, or didn't have health insurance, or couldn't keep their own jobs once the baby came, etc. etc. and so there would have been a very negative fiscal impact that would no doubt offset that social security boon quite a bit. I'm sorry, but if someone is trying to say that abortion is unethical from an economic perspective, then you just don't have a leg to stand on. Puh-lease!!

Mr Furious said...

Freakonomics. YES! That's it.

Thrillhous said...

Here's what I think happened inside Billy's head.

Billy's mouth: "Well, caller, I don't think you can make a case against abortion based on economics."

Billy's head: "Oh crap, did I just shoot down a pro-life argument? I should probably stop gambling online while I'm doing the show. I better say something good."

Billy's mouth: "Abort all black babies to stop crime."

Otto Man said...

As usual, Thrillhous has hit the nail on the head.

InanimateCarbonRod said...

Bennett + Malkin = Morally acceptable internment camps for black people & a crime-free America!

Brings a tear to your eye, don't it?

Otto Man said...

Nice plan, I-Rod. If only you could work in some trickle-down theory, arguing that the internment of African Americans would somehow benefit the economy, well, then it'd be perfect.

InanimateCarbonRod said...

We could cut taxes for rich people because there wouldn't be all those welfare queens to support...

Otto Man said...

So it's trickle-up?

You just blew my mind.

Mrs_Thrillhous said...

This morning, I switched to my local Fox station to flip through the listings (love digital cable!) to find out when the Skins game would be on. Well, Fox News Sunday was on, and they ran a teaser as they went to commercials: "Bill Bennett's comments: racist or thought-provoking?" I couldn't miss seeing someone trying to defend the latter.

Brit Hume: It's not racist because he said it would be morally reprehensible!

Bill Kristol: Regrettable. You shouldn't do thought experiments on the public.

Juan Williams, who previously struck me as a staunch GOPer, kept saying that he found it deeply offensive, and he was incredulous that such a thing could have been voiced, and Hume kept whining, "he didn't mean it that way, so you shouldn't be bothered."

I'm ready for some football!

John McAdams said...

Planned Parenthood Advocates Abortion to Reduce Crime

And the bizarre thing is that Bennett, who explicitly rejects abortion, is under attack.