4 thoughts on “Racism expert”

  1. This decision would seem to
    This decision would seem to represent a fusion between two supposedly distinct functions in modern liberal society: the neutral expert, managing society from a detached distance; and the activist/propagandist/demagogue. Of course, the distinction has long been breached, as we can see in the phenomenon of “advocacy journalism” and in open political propagandizing by college teachers. Still, judicial affirmation that an active partisan in a political conflict can serve as an “expert” on that conflict would seem to represent a new step toward the formal erection of an Ideological State.

  2. I’m confused. (First, to
    I’m confused. (First, to say where I stand in general, I’m on Jim Kalb’s and Larry Auster’s side about nearly everything. —Uhhhh … it’d be closer to the truth to scratch the “nearly” …)

    To me, Mr. Farber’s exclusion as a witness was as outrageous a judicial abuse as are the hate-crimes statutes themselves (strictly speaking, they are legislative abuses, but that they haven’t yet been stricken down by Judicial Review is a judicial travesty), or the prosecution of Holocaust deniers (in Canada, Germany, and elsewhere), or the blatant double-jeopardy meted out to the Rodney King defendants and to O.J. Simpson, or the horror of what was done to Ethel Rosenberg (who was not guilty of capital spying crimes as Julius apparently was, but was put to death merely as a result of legal manoeuvering by the Feds in order to get at him).

    Farber should have been allowed to be called as a Crown witness, the defense retaining the right of cross-examination to attack his credibility (I presume Canadian defendants have the right to cross-examine witnesses—correct me if I’m wrong).

    Only the moral side will win the war we now wage. Seeming victories by the other side are temporary. That side must lose in the end. For this practical reason alone—self-interest—it behooves our side to stick unwaveringly to principle even as we watch the other side flout it.

    But even were that not true—were it not true that the moral side was bound to win—our side must cleave just as firmly to principle and, if we go down, let us go down with a clear conscience. Somewhere in the scheme of things, right is right for right’s sake, and needs no other justification.

  3. Glancing through my comment
    Glancing through my comment (above), I see it clumsily neglects to distinguish the seriousness of the governmental horror visited upon Ethel Rosenberg from the other examples I give. Of course the one is not even in the same league as the others.

  4. I’m not sure why Unadorned
    I’m not sure why Unadorned finds it an outrage that the man was not originally allowed to testify. If he were rejected on grounds of bias as a witness in the normal sense—e.g., someone who saw what was going on—that would I agree be an outrage. But he’s not an witness in that sense. From what appears he has no more personal connection to the facts of the case than I do.

    The reason he’s allowed to testify when I would not is that he’s an “expert”—someone put forward by (in this case) the Crown to provide the finder of fact with objective knowledge to help the finder of fact interpret what the other witnesses are saying. With that in mind disqualification for gross bias would seem reasonable.

    I don’t know enough about the applicable standards to know whether as a matter of Canadian law he should have been allowed to testify. My impression is that a lot of people get qualified as experts who really shouldn’t be treated as such. My purpose in posting the link was not to argue that point though but to give an example of what “expertise” on racism amounts to.


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