Let Competition, Not Law, Determine Who Gets Into Harvard

The most sensible and effective way to police private college admissions practices isn't litigation or regulation, but competition.


The most telling development in the opening week of the court case putting Harvard College admissions on trial may have happened entirely outside the federal courthouse.

That was the announcement, timed exquisitely to coincide with the trial's opening day, that Stephen Schwarzman would give $350 million to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to create a new "MIT Schwarzman College of Computing."

As a Philadelphia high school student in the 1960s, Schwarzman had wanted to go to Harvard College but didn't get in, despite a post-rejection appeal call to the then-dean. He ended up going to Yale. Yale in 2015 announced its own $150 million gift from Schwarzman, prompting a wry New York Times op-ed by Michael Lewis about how Harvard needed to do better at picking winners. Schwarzman also has put $600 million—more than $100 million of his own money and another $500 million he is far along in raising—toward Schwarzman College and the Schwarzman Scholars program at Tsinghua University in Beijing.

Last month Harvard Business School, from which Schwarzman graduated in 1972, did announce a $5 million gift from the Blackstone founder, whose fortune is estimated by the Bloomberg Billionaires Index at about $13 billion. The Harvard Business School gift, in other words, is 1/70 of what he gave MIT. Another possible way to look at it, totaling up the Yale, MIT, and Tsinghua sums, is that Harvard's decision not to admit Stephen Schwarzman was a $1.1 billion mistake.

Schwarzman's gift to MIT was only the most recent in a series of reminders that Harvard exists in a higher education landscape that is highly competitive, from Cambridge to New Haven to China.

On October 5 Harvard installed as its new president Lawrence Bacow, who did his undergraduate work at MIT. Harvard College hasn't produced a president of Harvard University since Nathan Pusey, who served from 1953 to 1971. Since then, MIT has produced two Harvard presidents, Bacow and Lawrence Summers; the other three Harvard presidents since Pusey have been products of Princeton, Stanford, and Bryn Mawr. The last U.S. president with a Harvard College degree was John F. Kennedy.

Kendall Square, MIT's home in Cambridge, Mass., is booming with offices of venture capitalists and of rapidly growing high-technology companies such as Amazon, Google, and Facebook. Though Harvard has been trying to cultivate a similar startup ecosystem in Allston around Harvard Business School, progress has been slow.

Harvard's dean of admissions and financial aid, William Fitzsimmons, acknowledged during his trial testimony on Thursday that a substantial share of the students admitted to Harvard who plan to be engineers and computer scientists wind up choosing not to attend. Those students, he said, "yield at a much lower rate" than do other categories of admitted students. "A whole bunch of those engineers are going to end up happily ever after at MIT or Caltech," Fitzsimmons said.

Which brings us to the anti-discrimination case that is before Judge Allison Burroughs of the U.S. District Court in Boston. Brought by an advocacy group called Students For Fair Admissions, it accuses Harvard of unlawfully discriminating against Asian-American applicants in violation of Title VI the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The Supreme Court's most famous reckoning with that law in the education context was its 1978 opinion in Regents of the University of California v. Bakke. That opinion was fragmented, but it included Justice Lewis Powell's view that "The freedom of a university to make its own judgments as to education includes the selection of its student body."

Powell's Bakke opinion also included, as an appendix, Harvard's own description of its approach: "Faced with the dilemma of choosing among a large number of 'qualified' candidates, the Committee on Admissions could use the single criterion of scholarly excellence and attempt to determine who among the candidates were likely to perform best academically. But for the past 30 years, the Committee on Admissions has never adopted this approach. The belief has been that, if scholarly excellence were the sole or even predominant criterion, Harvard College would lose a great deal of its vitality and intellectual excellence, and that the quality of the educational experience offered to all students would suffer."

For Harvard, that method yielded an entering class of 2022 that is 22.7% Asian-American. MIT's class of 2022, for comparison's sake, is 37% Asian-American.

One plausible response to all this would echo Justice Powell's: absent evidence of outright bigotry or quotas, colleges, even those that accept federal research funding, should be free to make their admissions decisions without a lot of second-guessing or micromanagement by federal bureaucrats or judges, in part because marketplace competition has a way of sorting these things out. The colleges have every incentive to choose wisely, because if they don't, they risk missing out on a Schwarzman.

This is, incidentally, a point widely recognized in Boston during a trial that coincides with the baseball playoffs. Fans here still remember the on-field consequences of the Red Sox failing to sign Jackie Robinson. No one wants to repeat the errors of Tom Yawkey, the Red Sox owner who was slow to integrate and whose team suffered as a result. The city is going so far as renaming Yawkey Way, adjacent to Fenway Park. What made racism irredeemable, at least here, was its contribution to the dearth of World Series championships that lasted from 1918 to 2004.

None of this means that anti-discrimination laws are unnecessary, or that they should go unenforced. Racism is irrational, and outlawing it sends a moral message.

In this particular case, though, conservative commentators usually skeptical of heavyhanded government regulation, excessive litigation, and identity politics have nonetheless mostly been cheering on the plaintiffs' effort to depict Harvard's admissions process as bigoted and to impose a remedy. Perhaps they take pleasure in seeing mostly liberal Harvard hoisted on its own disparate-impact petard.

Fitzsimmons admitted me decades ago under a version of the current system, in which I've since played a tiny role as a volunteer alumni interviewer. When I peeked in on the trial, Fitzsimmons was being questioned by William Lee, an Asian-American Harvard graduate who is both Harvard's top lawyer on the case and the senior fellow of Harvard's governing Corporation.

Also among those at the Harvard table in the courtroom were Seth Waxman, who is a former solicitor general of the United States, and Felicia Ellsworth, who is a former clerk to Chief Justice John Roberts.

If the case does eventually wind up at the U.S. Supreme Court, Harvard's best chance to assemble a majority may rest in part on the idea that the most sensible and effective way to police private college admissions practices isn't litigation or regulation, but competition. There's a tendency to think, mistakenly, that the rare resource to be allocated here is a bed at Harvard College, or, to return to the baseball analogy, a spot on the Red Sox roster. But the genuinely scarce goods are the future Stephen Schwarzmans and Jackie Robinsons. The universities are all chasing them. Those young people are going to wind up as winners no matter what school they go to or what team they play for, and no matter what the court decides in this case.

Ira Stoll is editor of FutureOfCapitalism.com and author of NEXT: I Don't Hate Trump Because He Is 'the Average American in Exaggerated Form.' I Dislike Him Because of His Policies and Temperament.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. This is a tired and transparent playbook.

    (1) Declare a company or product that is heavily dependent upon government revenue of being “private”

    (2) Attack people who criticize said company or product as being against “private business”

    (3) Pretend as if the actual solution to the problem is theoretical competition, rather than regulation or the elimination of government revenues from supporting said company or product

    (4) Await your cocktail party invites

    1. “But the genuinely scarce goods are the future Stephen Schwarzmans and Jackie Robinsons. The universities are all chasing them.”

      In reality, the scarce resource should be federal dollars. Most people probably wouldn’t care how Harvard selects its students if it wasn’t for the inconvenient fact that taxpayers are footing the bill.

      1. Harvard’s endowment was $ 37.1 billion as of 2017. They shouldn’t receive a fucking Lenny of taxpayer money. In fact, they should have to fork over about $ 19 billion to lay back the treasury.

        1. They shouldn’t get so much as a Squiggy.

      2. And it was once Jewish students like Scharzman who were discriminated against in admissions. Now it’s Asian students. It’s not right in either case, but I agree — any college should be free to admit who they wish.

        1. Well, the rub is, as long as tax payer money is greasing the skids, AND we have all these nonsense discrimination laws… Well, if your group is getting screwed by their BS, you might as well sue!

          The affirmative action criteria they use basically screws Asians and white people the most, and helps blacks and Hispanics by giving them a lot more slots than they’d earn on academic merit.

          The whole “diversity is a virtue in and of itself” thing is just a bunch of BS. They’re really just graduating more sub part students by not taking the best of the best. If they weren’t getting funded with taxpayer money, and there weren’t discrimination laws, I’d say go for it idiots… But there are. And it’s kinda fucked.

          1. What should have happened was for the businesses, that use a degree as criterion for hiring, begin to give those, from any institution that uses bias in its admission process, less weight in their employment decisions.
            After all, what Harvard, and any other institution that doesn’t use purely academic standards, are saying is that their goal is not academic excellence, but some kind of diversity virtue signalling, that can do nothing but diminish the quality of their graduates, of all ethnicities.
            Without scholarly excellence being the sole or even predominant criterion, Harvard College does lose a great deal of its intellectual excellence, and the quality of the educational experience offered to all students does suffer.”

            1. That’s all true. As I said elsewhere, one of the perverse outcomes of this is that if you were looking to hire a black Harvard graduate, it would be logical to assume he is less excellent than an Asian Harvard graduate. Statistically speaking, that is sound logic.

              That isn’t fair to the black guy who got in that DIDN’T need affirmative action to do it, OR to the Asian students who didn’t get in so they could let in a sub par person from another minority group.

              It’s all just wrong, and stupid all up and down.

              1. Please stop being so thoughtful and logical. You might get sent to a gulag.

      3. If anything, the public good that the government should be pursuing is to reduce the power of specific elite schools, and drive evaluation of graduates toward objective standards. Place ridiculously neutral requirements on receiving student aid and research dollars to let these institutes choose their approach.

        1. It would be great if employers wouldn’t place so much emphasis on a pedigree from an elite school. They are getting much less than they think they are.

  2. Wouldn’t be fair to dumb people. They deserve to go to college too!

  3. Goddammit the dumbfuck who posted this article in forgot to close the final italics tag.

    1. What’s the big deal? Now all the comments seem fancy

      1. It’s like your comment is appearing in the New Yorker, except you’re not an insufferable douche-bag. Unlike your average New Yorker writer.

    2. Phew! I thought I was drunk.

      1. No, they wanted to make a statement about all the commenters leaning to the right.

  4. What if attending Harvard undergrad would have derailed his billionaire dreams?

    Then we wouldn’t be having this counterfactual discussion.

  5. What if a comment closes the italic tagJust for grins, “italic” is in its own paired italics tags.

    1. I tried. Didn’t work.


      not italics

      1. Yup. Once one post does it, the whole thread is fuct!

  6. If everything is in italics, nothing is in italics.

    1. The cake is a lie.

    2. Leave the poor Italians out of this; we are picking on Harvard here – – – – – – –

  7. If Harvard wants to stop taking federal money in the form of loans and grants to its students the way Bob Jones University does, great. If it doesn’t, then fuck them. They can not discriminate on the basis of race and other prohibited classes.

    If Stole actually believed this bullshit, he would either be calling for an end to all federal aid to higher education or demanding renegade schools like Bob Jones be allowed in on the action. Since he is doing neither of those things, this is just him telling the plebs to leave Harvard alone. Well, fuck Harvard and fuck Ira.

    1. Bob Jones still takes federal money. They just dropped their ban against interracial relationships when the federal government threatened them.

      There are about four colleges in the entire country that forgo federal money. I could care less about who they discriminate against. In their case, competition would be the alternative.

    2. Well, let’s get real here…

      What these people REALLY mean is they want “racial equality,” as long as it hurts successful groups… Namely white people. Because everybody knows diversity really just means fewer white people.

      The problem for these types, is that Asians tend to get disproportionately screwed by all the same things that are meant to skew things against whites. Why? Because the one thing all these programs have in common is ignore objective criteria or standards, which whites often perform better at, in order to give more slots to blacks/other minorities. Problem is Asians ALSO do awesome on objective criteria, so they get fucked too.

      They very intelligently took this case on on behalf of Asians, because could you imagine the shit show if they had used whites as their ethnic group… The left would be shitting an even bigger brick. The thing is, it’s bullshit across the board either way. When you’re talking about getting into saaay an engineering program, I’m friggin’ sorry, but your academic skills should be far and away the main criteria used for entrance.

    3. #OneSetOfRules

  8. I’m always amused when the “bake the cake” contingent argues that a businesses that is propped up by federal dollars, like Harvard, should not face legal repercussions for discriminatory practices, but that a truly private cake shop needs to be forced to provide a service.

    It’s almost as if you’re just trying to force progressive talking points behind a false veneer of “free markets”.

    1. It is pretty remarkable isn’t it?

      I would say it is just as much class driven as anything. Stoll considers the people who refuse to bake cakes for sacred gay weddings to be beneath him and deserving of whatever they get. Harvard is where respectable people go and entirely different in Stoll’s view. This article is snobbery more than leftism.

      1. Progressivism has always been about class distinction. That’s it’s most defining characteristic. Those with formal education know better than everyone else.

        1. “Progressivism has always been about class distinction. That’s it’s most defining characteristic. Those with formal education know better than everyone else.”

          How better to toss Mick immigrants out on the street than to declare they are not allowed to occupy group barracks?

  9. Reason, your articles are just a joke. Progressives see through your crap and will never love you, no matter how many principals you trash and how many BS pieces you write to appease them.

    To the rest of us actual libertarians here, you are a joke. All of you lost your minds after 2016 and haven’t recovered

    1. Criticizing Donald Trump does not make one deranged. Nor does it not make one unlibertarian. There’s nothing libertarian about him except tax cuts.

      1. This article is deranged, Tony. And this has nothing to do with Trump. This is just piss poor bad.

        1. Trump keeps a summer house inside Tony’s head.

            Get that out of MY head!

      2. Tony|10.22.18 @ 5:21PM|#
        “Criticizing Donald Trump does not make one deranged. Nor does it not make one unlibertarian. There’s nothing libertarian about him except tax cuts.”

        You left out about 15 or 20 issues where he shines and I have made it clear to you, you fucking ignoramus.
        Do you have to post lies to post?

    2. Yes we know. Real Libertarians(tm) would support cutting off government support to Harvard, just because it would make the libs cry.

      1. When you have to talk yourself out of the small government position because the “wrong” people support the same position you are more of a hypocrite than principled.

        And chemjeff is the best example of a hypocrite on the comment section

        1. Hey, radical collectivist, remind us how libertarian you are for supporting affirmative action and government funding for colleges.

          1. Who is in the market for tips on libertarianism from wall-building, womb-managing, drug warring, tariff-hugging clingers?

            1. Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland|10.22.18 @ 9:31PM|#
              “Who is in the market for tips on libertarianism from wall-building, womb-managing, drug warring, tariff-hugging clingers?”

              Well, who’s in the market for lefty SC nominees, dim-bulb heads of Sec-Ed, ditto heads of FCC, pouring tax money into 3rd-world countries for lame claims of climate damage, continuing the mandate requirements for medical insurance, higher taxes, an economy sucking hind tit?
              The annoying asshole, that’s who!

            2. Oh, and fuck off.

    3. Reason was taken over by Pomos and now exists mainly to discredit libertarianism.

  10. Valid to question government’s role in affirmative action stuff, but I don’t think market competition is all that relevant. Only a handful of people are getting into Harvard who will take the place of thousands of equally qualified applicants. The decision to admit is made to a large extent with the help of admissions voodoo. The people I know who went to Harvard were all crazy smart, as in ridiculously so. Their standards are very high regardless of whether they consider race.

    1. So, it should be OK for government or government supported industry to factor race in hiring?

      1. Government did plenty of oppressing people of certain races over the centuries, so it would be unseemly if I were all that bothered by miniscule attempts to rectify that.

        1. So screwing Asians rectifies Democrats discriminating against blacks for the first 150 years of the country’s history? Do the Asians know this?

          1. Asians aren’t being screwed. Nobody is entitled to be enrolled at Harvard. There’s a reasons Asian-Americans are overrepresented among nerds. There’s billions of them to choose from, and the ones who make it here tend to be motivated.

            1. So telling Asians they have to meet a higher standard because of their race isn’t screwing them? I guess blacks were never screwed either. They could still go to HBCs you know.

              You are a fucking horrible racist.

              1. Victims of their own success. Except that not going to Harvard isn’t being victimized, as much as a nerdy high-schooler might feel that it is.

                1. Being denied entrance into a university open to the public on the basis of your race is being victimized. if it were not, then being denied entracnce to a restaurant or anything else wouldn’t be.

                  You are so stupid. All you can do is repeat prog talking points.

                  1. One thing Tony knows is that a good way to keep blacks and Latinos on the democrat plantation is to give them affirmative action. These little scraps help keep their ‘minds right’ so they will be ‘good ones’.

                    Tony probably sees himself as the pillow biting version of Samuel Jackson’s character from ‘Django Unchained’.

                2. Tony|10.22.18 @ 5:35PM|#
                  “Victims of their own success. Except that not going to Harvard isn’t being victimized, as much as a nerdy high-schooler might feel that it is.”
                  You are a fucking horrible racist.

              2. Tony’s bigotry is once again on display.

                1. If Asians have the academic scores to merit being 37% of the students at Harvard (like at MIT), then they should be 37% of the students at Harvard.

                  Letting in a bunch of blacks, Hispanics, etc for some fuzzy wuzzy diversity goal is fucking dumb. It’s not fair to Asians, AND it’s not fair to blacks or Hispanics… Because honestly, if you know they let in lower performing blacks, why would you NOT assume the black guy you’re thinking about hiring with the Harvard degree is in fact less able than the Asian guy applying? Statistically that IS the case, by their own standards. Therefor you’re better off in hiring to go with the Asian Harvard grad, as he is probably considerably better performing than a black, or even white one, since it’s all sliding scale basically.

                  Whereas if you had ACTUAL objective criteria, you would be assured the brotha that went to Harvard DESERVED to be at Harvard. This kind of stuff is unfair, and it’s BS.

        2. Rectify what, exactly, Tony? Asians were not in the US owning slaves and most whites in this country were not around during the time of slavery or even Jim Crow. The descendants of those slave owners are still getting into Harvard, because they’re legacies. So what exactly are you rectifying? And what unique offense was committed against Hispanics to even justify them receiving a leg-up? How were they treated any differently from any other immigrant group?

          Just reciting mindless talking points doesn’t make you sound smart. It does make you sound like you went to an Ivy League school, but that doesn’t usually mean you’re smart

          1. I’m just saying it doesn’t really affect me or you so why waste energy caring?

            1. I don’t know. Why did you care so much about a cake baker who didn’t want to bake a wedding cake? That didn’t affect you either?

              In this case it does affect me, because I am paying for Harvard whether I attended that pretentious institution or not

              1. *prestigious*

                I keep confusing “pretentious” with “prestigious” when discussing these fine institutions of high learning

                1. They’re interchangeable in this case.

              2. I’m paying for the roads you drive on.

                1. No you boy buggerer, I’m laying for the roads YOU drive on.

                  So fuck off, and and hopefully die.

            2. Tony|10.22.18 @ 5:30PM|#
              “I’m just saying it doesn’t really affect me or you so why waste energy caring?”

              Isn’t it interesting that our lefty fucking ignoramus was all over any sort of utilitarian argument when it had to do with a journalist who really does have ‘nothing to do with us’, but *TRUMP*, so *SCREAM!!!*
              And now, given it really could affect your or me, if we happened to be of Asian descent and got passed over ’cause Wang or Lie.
              Fuck you Tony, with turd’s dick.

            3. As a straight guy, discriminating and oppressing gay people doesn’t affect me, so why should I care? Because I’m a normal human with empathy and don’t want to see my fellow humans treated unfairly because of how they were born. But you are are typical sociopathic Leftist and can’t comprehend that.

              1. Actually Tony, if you had read up on this case, they ALSO discriminate against whites compared to what objective criteria would warrant. Basically, they screw whites and Asians, to favor mostly blacks and Hispanics.

                So anybody who has kids, who happens to be white or Asian, should indeed be concerned. And it’s not just about Harvard. TONS of schools do this, most all of them. So a case like this could have massive repercussions if this kind of racial bias is struck down.

                Thing is, it’s not like the kind of black people that get let into Harvard are retards. They’re certainly all very sharp people, but some of them aren’t quite Harvard sharp. They won’t be relegated to going to work at McDonald’s if they don’t get into Harvard, they’ll end up going to top state universities, or perhaps even a 1 tier down Ivy. Not exactly torture, and in fact probably a better fit for their capabilities.

                1. Let’s not forget the black, or Hispanic applicant, who does meet the fullest of the academic criteria to be admitted to Harvard, who gets looked at, askance, by a potential employer, who will think they were given the affirmative action treatment and not be up to the standards of those not given that boost. Those black and Hispanic graduates must carry that stigma, even though not deserved.
                  It is the same for anyone, who “qualifies” for those skin-color/surname benefits, but doesn’t need them.
                  No one can believe that the affirmative action preferential treatment ends at admission, and doesn’t continue throughout their time there. What good is admitting substandard applicants if they all end up dropping, or failing out?

        3. Because people with X superficial trait shafted people with Y superficial trait, it is good to shaft an entirely different set of people who have Trait X in favor of a new set of people with Trait Y. People with Trait Z can go pound sand because they bollocks up the whole spoils system.

          1. Nowhere in that formula are any of those people given consideration as individuals. Just as notches on some absurd scorecard.

        4. And factoring eace rectifies this how?

        5. Well, African Americans were certainly oppressed by governments, with Jim Crow laws to stop private businesses from serving the customers they wished, and not prosecuting the organized criminals in the slave trade, so it made a certain amount of sense to try to make up for that. For how long is an open question.

          But Asians immigrated to the US originally to take menial jobs and worked their way up. Now Hispanics have been immigrating to take menial jobs and have been slower to work their way up, so the Dems want to grant them civil rights legal protections comparable to a truly oppressed people, hoping to chase their votes. But not grant those same protections to Asians, hoping they will vote against the Repubs because they don’t like their immigration rhetoric.

          1. Why have Hispanics been slower to work their way up compared to Asians?

            1. There are reasons… They’re not very PC though.

              Average IQ says it all. The hierarchy that shows up in IQ testing the world over always goes Jews, Asians, Whites, others in between, and sub-Saharan blacks with the lowest.

              Even if you want to think it is 100% environmental factors, it STILL explains all the differences in outcomes in the here and now. How people can ignore this is beyond belief. Life outcomes perfectly match up with observed IQ scores, and if people want to believe it is environmental and not genetic, it doesn’t require any “racism” at all to be true.

              1. So how did Spain manage to forge an empire despite the low IQ of its inhabitants?

                1. Well Michael, if you KNEW ANYTHING ABOUT THE SUBJECT, Spain doesn’t have a low IQ. Most all of the countries in Europe are within a couple points of each other plus or minus. Spain isn’t the very highest, or the very lowest, they’re about right in the middle of European scores… Which is to say higher than anywhere else on earth, other than some Asian countries.

                  The reason Latin America has a lower IQ on average, if one believes in the genetic explanation, is because Native Americans have low IQs. This shows in tests of full blooded natives in the USA and parts of Latin America, and likewise in people of mixed heritage, like most of Latin America.

                  Argentina and Uruguay, the two most European countries by blood, SOMEHOW have the highest average IQ scores in all of Latin America.

                  So Spain took over a good chunk of the world, because every single place they invaded had lesser technology, and lower IQs. Not that the IQ thing even explains everything about empires anyway… Plenty of great empires pre European colonialism came out of areas that didn’t have the highest IQs anyway. Sometimes a good barbarian horde will get the job done!

                  1. Also, Michael, since you probably don’t know this, I’m part Mexican AND Native. The facts on this stuff are too much to be ignored. The current IQ gap explains basically 100% of differences in outcomes between ethnic groups, even if it is entirely environmental. The evidence all points towards it being between 50% and 80% genetic though, with 60-70% being the most common estimates. This should be the default position based on evidence… Yet because it isn’t PC, it all gets completely swept under the rug.

                    IMO, it’s the same shit as all the similar evidence on gender trait differences, which many libertarians can accept as being real. It would piss off tons of people to admit the truth, so it just gets buried. Yet you can still go read all these stats online, read the studies etc. Hell, even Wikipedia links to a lot of these studies on their Race and IQ page. Read the evidence, and decide for yourself.

                    Even if IQs differ, it doesn’t make people less than human… Nobody would consider a slightly slow white guy to be sub-human, so why should they do that for a below average intelligence black guy? People who jump to that conclusion are idiots, who don’t know history. NONE of the abolitionists thoughts blacks were EQUAL to white people, they just thought they deserved to be free either way. And if anything we’ve become a lot nicer since then. So I wouldn’t worry about horrible results from the truth being accepted.

          2. Actually, Jim Crow laws didn’t prevent people from serving customers they wanted… You were allowed to have a mixed business if you wanted. MANY were. It simply allowed you freedom of association, including to discriminate. BIG DIFFERENCE.

    2. “admissions voodoo”

      Anti-Haitian racist!

    3. So, if they decided not to admit any black people or to make it easy for you homos, it would be okay in your view as long as they only let really smart people in?

      1. I do regret not playing up the homo thing in my application.

        1. Application? For what? Boy Scout troop leader?

          Your dumb ass probably never went to college, unless it was to work as a glory hole attendant.

          1. Every party I’ve ever thrown has suffered for lacking your presence, no doubt.

    4. I wonder when they will start demanding racially balanced admissions reviews to avoid unconscious bias against Asian or other students, which is readily apparent in the “personal” rankings for students of comparable academic and extracurricular accomplishment.

    5. It’s fun watching Tony defend racism against Asians.

  11. Go ahead and turn off the spigot from the federal treasury, then let private colleges – which will have become fully private – set their own policies.

    Harvard may have to cut back a few expenses, like having so many students reside on campus. It may have to let some students study online in their underwear from the privacy of their living rooms in Des Moines or Mumbai.

    Maybe some of their administrative staff will have to be cut loose. Or maybe give them pay cuts and put them to work in Marketing, so they can join those colleges which are already purchasing online and radio ads for their distance-learning programs.

    1. This is the obvious answer. I have no idea why woketarians need to play roundabout with this problem, rather than offering an obvious solution: END FEDERAL SUPPORT FOR THESE COLLEGES

      1. That sounds almost like something a Libertarian would support. Funny Ira doesn’t see that as the sollution here. Instead, we are all supposed to pay taxes to support Harvard so that it can screw people based on their race.

        1. I’ll say it again:

          $ 37.1 BILLION ENDOWMENT!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          WTF do they need federal funds for? One would think dividend income, alumni donations, and tuition revenue would sustain that place for all eternity at this point.

          1. Wow, that’s a big endowment they got there.

            1. Shame if something happened to it….

          2. Last of the Shitlords|10.22.18 @ 7:01PM|#
            “I’ll say it again:
            $ 37.1 BILLION ENDOWMENT!!!!!!!!!!!!!
            WTF do they need federal funds for? One would think dividend income, alumni donations, and tuition revenue would sustain that place for all eternity at this point.”

            I’m going to suggest you look at some pretty basic econ texts before you ask why any person or organization “needs” any amount they currently have or might get.
            To be honest, the question is totally irrelevant; outside of some truly minuscule values, all is “want’.

          3. Actually, it basically does support the thing entirely. They just keep pissing away more and more money on stupid shit, because as long as extra guvmint money keeps pouring in, why not?

    2. Maybe, for a fee, people can be allowed to audit actual Harvard classes online.

      “Hello, I’m Buff Biffington III, Director of External Relations for Harvard University. Would you like to casually drop into a conversation the fact that you studied at Harvard? Now you can – for the low price of only $1,999.00, you can audit a Renaissance Literature course! But this offer won’t last forever – call now, operators are standing by!”

  12. This article needs a better illustration, why not search Google Images for “Harvard University Asian”?

    You know you want to.

  13. I have a Harvard Business College T-Shirt.
    (Legt too. The company where I worked contracted with Harvard to provide a bunch of “management compliance” courses via the web. Free T-Shirt with the second certificate earned. Ironic huh? Harvard T-Shirt for a certificate in how to not discriminate. I still giggle each time I put it on)

    I am not Asian, but I think I may become Asian to get in on the class action.
    Any advice on what type of gender I should become to maximize benefits?

    1. It is also legit. I do not have a t-shirt for typing)

      1. Caucasian is a kind of asian.

        1. Or just watch this video enough times.

  14. The ACLU reveals the honky in the woodpile:

    “Let’s be clear: The lawsuit against Harvard that supposedly represents the interests of Asian-American students would mostly benefit white students if successful.”

    1. And God forbid anything should benefit those horrid white people. They chose to be born that way and must be punished for eternity!

      1. “Whitey has it coming”

    2. “Supposedly” is a pretty strong word, if they’re being discriminated against.

    3. All true!

      But in a country where it is now not only acceptable, but encouraged, to hate the majority ethnic group… They had to choose a “minority” group to be the figurehead of the lawsuit.

      If this was some white guy being used as the front man, lord knows how the left would be howling. They’re bitching bad enough already.

      But yeah, whites are also heavily discriminated against in these affirmative action cases. Asians just get caught up in schemes designed to screw white people because they have their shit together and are successful too. Even more successful than whites statistically.

      Anything that ends this kind of BS I am in favor of. I believe in a meritocracy, even if that means some people succeed more than other people.

      1. “Meritocracy so racist. My professor told me so.”

        1. Well, the funny thing is that they’re kind of right!

          Meritocracy does leave certain groups whooping ass on everybody else… But it is also the most FAIR and OBJECTIVE way to do things. Promoting an incompetent person to a position above their skill is never a good thing, and has negative repercussions for society down the line. The best person for the job should always get it, as that makes things the best overall for everybody in all situations. Affirmative action destroys that, and slowly drags the whole civilization down from where it would be with a meritocracy.

  15. I totally agree. But many ‘Libertarians’ here think it’s ok to discriminate against some people because of how they were born (aka straight, white guys). How about we treat everyone the same and let the chips land where they may? How can a rational person oppose that? Oh, right. So-called libertarians who frequent this site.

  16. OK, Gilmore was famous for not closing the /I/; who did it this time?

  17. There’s also the old story of the dusty travelers from the West who showed up at Harvard, asking about making a large donation in honor of their deceased son, and if they could have a building named after him.

    At which point the snooty Harvard dean asked them what they considered a “large” donation. When he heard an amount he considered quite unlikely for the couple, he said “for that much, you could start a whole university”.

    So they did, naming at after their son…. Leland Stanford, Jr.

  18. Competition? Thass racist, no doubt.

  19. I REALLY hope they win this case.

    In a nation that is rapidly becoming minority majority, stuff like affirmative action is just not acceptable. It never was honestly, but if it ever was it certainly isn’t now. These things were all just set up to screw white people, and Asians have also got caught in the snare because they’re high achievers. In South Africa they have affirmative action… For the majority population! They literally limit the ability for whites and Indians (there are a lot there) to get into schools or jobs, even though they’re minority populations there. That kind of madness can not stand in the US.

    Let the best man win… If you don’t it throws doubt on every non white/Asian that graduates from one of these places. You’ll always have to wonder if they were some sub par student that just got in because they were black or whatever. That’s not fair to them either!

    Sooo, next up on the lawsuit circuit, ending affirmative action being used against all men! Because they also artificially bump all female scores in college entrance exams :0

  20. Also

    “Racism is irrational, and outlawing it sends a moral message.”

    DA FUCK. This is the exact OPPOSITE of the libertarian position, which is freedom of association reigns supreme. Also, IS it irrational? Or is it rational in many situations, but simply mean and immoral? Interesting question if one parses through many statistics and psychological studies…

    1. You say that like it’s a big surprise.

      The shiny new Pomo Reason will of course often have the exact opposite of the libertarian position.

      1. Well it’s not a surprise… But we must continue to express our outrage anyway right?

        It really is a joke how un-libertarian this site has become. I am 98% libertarian, but I take some more traditional conservative positions in a few areas where I don’t think pure libertarianism actually works well… Like immigration.

        But the Reason writers, as the biggest libertarian publication in the world, should at least be shilling for the purist positions all the time… Right?

        BUT NO. They just outright go for leftists clap trap now. It’s sickening. In a way I would personally prefer they went right leaning on some of these issues, as those are my positions… But in a way I would lose respect for them there too. They should be pushing the purist positions, since that’s kinda the point of a publication like this right? I mean da fukk man.

  21. “None of this means that anti-discrimination laws are unnecessary, or that they should go unenforced. Racism is irrational, and outlawing it sends a moral message.”

    Another “Libertarian Moment”, brought to you by Pomo Reason. Let’s use the force of law to send a “moral message”. Which in this case means enforcing anti discrimination laws. Except when it means enforcing it against leftist power. Don’t do it then. Because reasons. All in the name of combatting irrationality.

    “In this particular case, though, conservative commentators usually skeptical of heavyhanded government regulation, excessive litigation, and identity politics have nonetheless mostly been cheering on the plaintiffs’ effort to depict Harvard’s admissions process as bigoted and to impose a remedy. Perhaps they take pleasure in seeing mostly liberal Harvard hoisted on its own disparate-impact petard.”

    The Right is for consistently enforcing laws against racial discrimination.
    The Left is for inconsistently enforcing laws mandating racial discrimination.

  22. The bottom line, here, is that FEDGOV would never let any of its money even close to any other business that practiced this form of discrimination.
    They’ve used the sword of Damocles of their funding over the head of almost any business or institution they want to force into imposing all kinds of ukases, they think need to be done, for “social justice”.
    The fact that they are using the old “private business” excuse – something real private businesses don’t get to use if they are a “public accommodation” – to avoid having to engage this issue is just a further example of the hypocrisy that has to accompany illogical efforts to “correct the wrongs of history”, and buy votes.

  23. Let Harvard put whoever they want in, as long as they give up all public funding and advantages, I don’t really have a problem with it.

  24. I assume the author agrees that all laws implementing Affirmative Action and protections for LGBQ, women and minorities should be removed from the books and simply allow that marketplace to sort things out. Or does that author only take the free-market stand when Asians are being screwed?

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