Dog Bites Man; Conservative Pundit Abuses Statistics

Tyler DiPietro fisks conservative pundit John Hawkins who’s clueless about science, but leaves fisking his statistical claims to me. I’m always happy to oblige; the claim in question is that liberals are more racist than conservatives. I hate to disappoint Tyler, but Hawkins isn’t making an error in mathematics, but in basic reasoning. He quotes a study saying,

White Republicans nationally are 25 percentage points more likely on average to vote for the Democratic senatorial candidate when the GOP hopeful is black…In House races, white Democrats are 38 percentage points less likely to vote Democratic if their candidate is black.

The most shoddy part of the quote is the ellipsis, which covers several paragraphs in the relevant article. The 25% and 38% figures are not meant to be compared; after all, the 25% figure applies to Senate races while the 38% applies to House races, in which different dynamics might be in play.

In addition, just comparing white Democrats to white Republicans is somewhat misleading, since Democrats also have a significant black and Latino vote. In the 2006 election, a sixth of the Democratic House vote was black and 10% was Latino compared with only 2% and 5% of the Republican House vote respectively.

The remainder of Hawkins’ point about racism is a short screed about how Republicans are the party of Lincoln whereas Democrats had a Dixiecrat contingent. Not surprisingly, Hawkins stops short of looking at Democratic versus Republican behavior sometime in the 1960s, when the Dixiecrats defected to the Republicans after LBJ did something to help black people.

Incidentally, the other point of Hawkins refuting which Tyler left to me – namely, that conservatives contribute to charity more – is something I talked about a while ago. In a nutshell, charity is meaningless. If you have 200 dollars to burn, the best way of spending them is contributing to politicians who help the poor; for a billion dollars every four years you can elect a President and a Congress that will push through programs that will increase federal payments to both the real (i.e. third-world) poor and the US poor by 30 billion dollars a year each.

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9 Responses to Dog Bites Man; Conservative Pundit Abuses Statistics

  1. muppt says:

    Tyler DiPietro seems pretty fat, that’s probably one reason why there are still children starving in South Africa.

  2. Phil says:

    That today’s ‘conservative Republicans’, who had their foundation in the 1960’s shift predicted by Lyndon Johnson (with the passage of the civil rights bills, he remarked that the Democrats would lose the South for a generation), ‘tout’ a continuity with the ‘radical Republicans’ of the 1860s is perhaps the greatest irony in current politics.

  3. muppt says:

    Canada will soon achieve world domination

    http://cwd.ptbcanadian.com/

  4. SLC says:

    Re muppt

    The US should invade and take over Canada.

  5. Tyler DiPietro says:

    Canada sucks.

  6. SLC says:

    Re muppt

    The trouble with muppt is that he breaths out but he doesn’t breath in.

  7. SLC says:

    On a more serious note, it should be pointed out that most Republican black candidates are conservatives and are considered to be uncle Toms by the black communities. Take the recent election. A black conservative uncle Tom was defeated by a white liberal for the vacant Maryland Senate seat. Since Maryland is one of the bluest of the blue states, it is not surprising that a Republican candidate of any race lost. In Pennsylvania, a Republican black conservative ran unsuccessfully for the Governors position against the incumbent who was a white liberal Democrat. Pennsylvania is a swing state but the the incumbent was popular. In both races, the black candidates ran far behind their white opponents among black voters. Like Jewish voters, black voters know who their friends are.

  8. Hello,

    Congressman Ron Paul, a man who truly believes in freedom, is running for the Republican nomination for president. I’m working to gather support so Congressman Paul will become a candidate.

    http://www.ronpaulexplore.com/html/LatestNews_fs.html

  9. After reading this article, I just feel that I really need more information on the topic. Can you share some more resources ?

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