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The Zman was at the Mencken Club meeting last weekend and has lots of interesting things to say (see Day One and Day Two). The most interesting thing I read was from Day One and dealt with the NAXALT problem. I’ll let him explain:

NAXALT stands for “Not All (X) Are Like That” with X being some natural demographic grouping of people. It is the mistaken belief that because you can find one exception to the rule, that the general rule is invalid. For example, not all immigrants vote Democrat, so the observation that immigrants overwhelmingly support Democrats is somehow not true, despite the data. This is, of course, most commonly found when talking about the complexion of crime statistics. Ben Carson is more powerful that Table 43.

One suggestion I made was to explain the NAXALT fallacy in a different context that does not have the same emotional baggage. Instead of taking the issue head on, approach it from the direction of other non-political stuff. Re-condition their minds to accepting that exceptions don’t change the general rule. More important, we tend to live by the general rule. Once your normie friend is used to accepting the general rule in all other issues, they will be more prepared to accept it in our issues…

That is an excellent observation and so very true. I just ran into this over the last day. When I point out to people, in this case more libertarians, that immigrants consistently vote 2-1 for Democrats and therefore mass immigration makes socialism more likely and libertarianism even more impossible, they always trot out the “well I know X-number of first generation immigrants and they are super conservative”. One major problem is that conservatives and libertarians equate being entrepreneurial with being conservative. Sahib from India running the gas station or Wong from China running a laundry are already used to massive government so nothing we are going to do here will bother them. Maybe heritage American small business owners are more conservative because they are used to smaller government but newer immigrants aren’t, and again voting patterns and party identification proves this. Blacks voted overwhelmingly for Obama whether they were religious or wealthy or small business owners. They will vote for whoever the Democrat is in 2020 in spite of Trump pandering to them non-stop because for non-white groups tribal identity trumps economics or even social issues.

No one is saying that there are no black conservatives or libertarians or that no mestizos vote Republican. Simply that taken as a whole there are very, very few conservative minority voters. In a nation of over 330 million people, presenting your immigrant neighbor who owns a small business as proof that the overwhelming evidence is inaccurate is just dumb.

You can always find exceptions. The vast majority of Amish are hard working and honest but I personally know a few that are completely dishonest and lazy. Because I know a couple of lazy Amish, it doesn’t follow that therefore all Amish are lazy. The exception is not the rule, that is why it is called the exception in the first place.

Don’t let people derail you with “I know a guy…” arguments. Stick to the facts and the facts are pretty clear on the big issues of the day.

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