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Date: Mon, 21 Jul 1997 16:23:36 -0700
To: (Recipient list suppressed)
From: Paul Andrew Mitchell [address in tool bar]
Subject: SLS: Racial Politics (fwd)

>CONGRESS ACTION:            July 20, 1997
>RACIAL POLITICS: This week, the President's Advisory Board on Race held
>its first meeting in the White House Conference Center. This is the
>Clinton brainstorm, created to help the nation engage in "a candid
>conversation on the state of race relations", which the president
>announced on June 14. Monologue would be a more descriptive term than
>conversation, because the term 'conversation' implies that more than one
>point of view is presented, and that all sides will at least listen with
>an open mind to perspectives with which they may not agree. 
>     A brief overview of the Advisory Board:
>JOHN HOPE FRANKLIN, Chairman, retired historian and educator, M.A. and
>PhD. from Harvard University; who believes that everything is the fault
>of whites: "The white side has been in control of virtually everything,
>so they're the ones who need educating on what justice and equality
>WILLIAM F. WINTER, the former Democratic Governor of Mississippi;
>LINDA CHAVEZ-THOMPSON, an Executive Vice President with the AFL-CIO, a
>self described Latina labor activist;
>ANGELA E. OH, an attorney specializing in state and federal criminal
>defense. Following the riots in Los Angeles, served as Special Counsel
>to the Assembly Special Committee on the Los Angeles Crisis;
>SUZAN D. JOHNSON COOK, Senior Pastor of the Bronx Christian Fellowship
>Church, from 1993 to 1994, a White House Fellow working for the White
>House Domestic Policy Council, served as a consultant to the U.S.
>Department of Housing and Urban Development from 1994 to 1997;
>ROBERT THOMAS, President and CEO of Nissan Motor Corporation;
>THOMAS H. KEAN, the former Republican Governor of New Jersey;
>CHRISTOPHER EDLEY, senior advisor and consultant, a Professor at Harvard
>Law School since 1981 and co-director of the Harvard University Civil
>Rights Project, also served as Special Counsel to President Clinton.
>     The Goals are formally described as follows:
>1. To articulate the President's vision of racial reconciliation and a
>just, unified America.
>2. To help educate the nation about the facts surrounding the issue of
>3. To promote a constructive dialogue, to confront and work through the
>difficult and controversial issues surrounding race.
>4. To recruit and encourage leadership at all levels to help bridge
>racial divides.
>5. To find, develop and implement solutions in critical areas such as
>education, economic opportunity, housing, health care, crime and the
>administration of justice -- for individuals, communities, corporations
>and government at all levels.
>     Robert Thomas (Nissa CEO) and Thomas Kean (former Republican
>Governor) are the tokens which Clinton expects to point to as
>"conservatives" when he describes his Advisory Board as bipartisan; the
>former simply because he is a corporate executive (which demonstrates
>nothing), the latter because he is nominally a member of the Republican
>party. Of course, getting elected governor of one of the more liberal
>states in the nation guarantees that Kean's conservative vision is
>decidedly moderate. As for Goal # 1, is there any doubt about the nature
>of President Bill "mend-it-don't-end-it" Clinton's vision on race?
>Nearly half of all blacks oppose affirmative action, yet Clinton wants
>to retain it. A majority of Californians voted to end the racial spoils
>system, yet Clinton wants to retain it. The Supreme Court has severly
>restricted minority preferences in federal contracting and education,
>yet the Clinton Justice and Education Departments continue to pressure
>private employers and schools to violate those decisions. As opposed to
>Bill Clinton's "vision of racial reconciliation", devoid of any
>substance, consider Newt Gingrich's vision: "...treat individuals as
>individuals." What a novel thought!
>     Despite the obvious political persuasions of the members of the
>President's Advisory Board, can it be that each and every one of them is
>so totally blinded by liberal dogma that they fail to see the obvious
>lack of any real conservative voices on the Board? They certainly take
>themselves very seriously, but do they actually expect anyone else in
>the country to take them seriously, given the way the Board is presently
>constituted? Grant the members of the Advisory Board the benefit of
>doubt, consider that they may in fact all be honorable men and women. Do
>they actually believe that conservative voices are simply unworthy of
>contributing to their effort, or has it simply escaped their attention
>that there is a gaping hole in the perspective represented on the
>Advisory Board? There are a wealth of conservative voices in this
>country eminently qualified to speak about race relations, make positive
>contributions to the Advisory Board, and turn the liberal monologue into
>a true dialogue: Ward Connerly, who authored and led the fight for the
>California Civil Rights Initiative; Thomas Sowell, who has written many
>masterful books on race relations and civil rights; Clarence Thomas,
>Supreme Court Justice; J.C. Watts, a well respected member of Congress;
>Alan Keyes, former presidential candidate; Walter Williams, a well
>respected economist. And these names barely scratch the surface of the
>conservatives who would have much useful input to contribute to any true
>dialogue on race relations. Unless the Advisory Board demands that some
>true conservatives be immediately asked to join their deliberations,
>they will be complicit in maintaining the Clinton charade, and whatever
>conclusions they arrive at will be rightly ignored as irrelevant
>partisan posturing. Because Bill Clinton has done more than ask
>conservatives to move to the back of the bus -- he has thrown
>conservatives off the bus completely.
>     The approaching year 2000 census also has racial overtones. Many
>government forms, including the census, have boxes in which the person
>filling it out must indicate which racial category best describes them.
>Due to the increasingly mixed nature of races and ethnic backgrounds in
>this country, pressure is building to include a "multiracial" box which
>people can check off, who don't fit neatly into any of the other boxes.
>Census officials insist that the collection of such information is vital
>for a variety of reasons (primarily calculating voting districts and
>administering affirmative action programs) and that the multiracial box
>will cloud such classification. Health officials insist that the
>collection of such data is vital to track people and groups who are
>susceptible to certain diseases. Calculating voting districts does not
>require any racial determination. Although some people have pushed the
>notion that the only way to attain true representation in Congress is to
>be represented by someone of the same color, ethnic origin, or whatever
>-- leading to gerrymandered voting districts created solely on the basis
>of race, which have been struck down by the Supreme Court -- that type
>of representation never has been either possible or desireable. "The
>idea of an actual representation of all classes of the people by persons
>of each class is altogether visionary. It is said to be necessary that
>all classes of citizens should have some of their own number in the
>representative body in order that their feelings and interests may be
>the better understood and attended to. But we have seen that this will
>never happen under any arrangement that leaves the votes of the people
>free." -- Alexander Hamilton
>     The other reason put forth for such racial counting is the
>administration of affirmative action programs: the government handing
>out racial spoils. If we are to be a truly multiracial society, where a
>person's race or ethnic background do not matter, in other words, a
>truly color blind society, isn't it time to abandon the official
>government attempt to stuff people into racial categories? Why not
>consider the startling idea of abandoning check-off boxes entirely?
>     Finally on the race front are the campaign finance hearings, where
>the bean counters struck again in the hiring of John Huang. That which
>Senator Akaka called racial and ethnic harassment of Asians, turns out
>to have been the result of Bill Clinton's attempt to "create a capable
>and diverse administration that looks like America", according to
>testimony from the former associate director of White House personnel,
>Gary Christopherson. Of course, he insisted, Huang was totally
>qualified. In fact, Huang was given an interrum security clearance prior
>to the completion of his full field background investigation (a new
>procedure with this administration), the completion of which was waived
>because of the "critical need for his expertise...for Secretary Brown",
>according to Paul Buskirk, Commerce Department's former Acting Security
>Director. However, former Commerce undersecretary Jeffrey Garten said he
>blocked Huang from having any role in China policy at Commerce because
>Huang was "totally unqualified".
>     One of the problems with the hearings thus far is the lack of
>drama, despite having the CIA agent who briefed Huang testify from
>behind a screen. But the testimony of most witnesses is bogged down with
>rambling questioning by Senators who are painfully unfamiliar with even
>the basics of interrogating a witness, yet who insist on the ego
>gratification of hogging center stage, and haven't the good grace to
>turn their time over to committee counsel or one of the other Senators
>with legal training who can conduct an effective examination. Chairman
>Thompson, himself a former actor, should appreciate the benefits of
>staging high drama, especially in this era of media superficiality and a
>public conditioned to view life as a TV melodrama. So for Senator
>Thompson, a suggestion involving all the witnesses who have fled the
>country or who have had their lawyers express their reliance on the
>Fifth Amendment. A claim of Fifth Amendment protection should not be
>asserted behind the scenes by a lawyer in a letter to committee counsel.
>Thompson should schedule one day for all these witnesses, subpoena all
>who can be found, and set up empty chairs for those who cannot. Then
>call them all, one by one, establish their links to the Clinton campaign
>and administration, and to the DNC, then have each one of them sworn in
>and sit there before the public and assert the Fifth Amendment. There
>are nearly 50 such witnesses, and even a jaded public and block-headed
>media could not avoid the damning appearance of a massive stonewall and
>cover-up. Which is exactly what the administration and committee
>democrats, aided by a complicit media, are perpetrating on the public.
>Senator Glenn will object to this, but its time the republican majority
>started acting like a majority, instead of running like scared rabbits
>every time the administration unleashes its demagoguery, and every time
>the democrats cry partisanship while themselves engaging in rabid
>partisan defense of the White House, not a search for facts. Indeed,
>anyone watching the hearings will be struck by the democrats' fear of
>actually uncovering facts. Hypocrisy is at home among the democrats.
>GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN: On a lighter note comes the recommendation from
>Virginia's Secretary of Natural Resources. If the federal government is
>serious about improving the environment, she said, it should close down
>during the current heat wave and hazardous air pollution. "We believe
>this circumstance requires that the federal government demonstrate its
>commitment and leadership by closing for the day...". This wonderful
>idea certainly requires a re-think of the whole global warming scam, in
>conjunction with the EPA's new clean air rules (which were signed this
>week), which will instantly put 280 counties in violation of the new
>limits on ozone (nearly double the current number) and 150 counties in
>violation of its soot standards (nearly triple the current number). If
>the federal government shut down whenever the temperature climbs or the
>air is dirty, then by all means bring the heat! 
>Kim Weissman
>CONGRESS ACTION newsletter is available on the Internet:

Paul Andrew Mitchell                 : Counselor at Law, federal witness
B.A., Political Science, UCLA;  M.S., Public Administration, U.C. Irvine

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