Thomas Sowel Quotes

Although Hispanics have overtaken blacks numerically as part of the population, blacks still receive more doctorates than Hispanics. While the Asian American population is only a fraction of the size of either the black or Hispanic population, Asian Americans receive more doctorates than Hispanics and nearly as many as blacks. -- P. 155

According to this vision (constrained) wars are a perfectly rational activity from the standpoint of those who anticipate gain for themselves, their class, or their nation, whether or not these anticipations are often mistaken, as all human calculations may be. -- P. 143

The military and political viability of the newly created states, and the dangers to the peace of Europe as a whole when the international balance of power was made fragile by the existence of so many small and vulnerable countries were considerations lost in the euphoria of victory and the heady process of 'nation building'- or more accurately, empire dismemberment. But the importance of these factors was painfully revealed by the subsequent breakdown of the balance of power in Europe, as Hitler was able to pick off- one by one- countries that would have been much more difficult to conquer when they were part of a consolidated empire, thus enabling Nazi Germany to begin shifting the military balance of power in its favor, even before the onset of the Second World War. -- P. 18

Recycling is not categorically justified or unjustified, but is incrementally either worth or not worth the costs...-studies of government-imposed recycling programs in the United States have shown that what they salvage is usually worth less than the cost of salvaging it. -- P. 14 - 15

The side effects of slavery were not negligible, especially in the United States, where the staggering economic and human costs of the Civil War seemed to fit Abraham Lincoln‘s premonition that all the treasure built up from unpaid labor might be sunk in the ensuing war and every drop of blood drawn by the lash might be paid in blood shed with the sword. -- P. 65

A society in which some authorities can weigh millions of their fellow human beings in balance, determine their worth, and unilaterally dispense their livelihoods as largess from the government is a profoundly different kind of society from that created and maintained in the United States of America for more than two centuries. -- P. 72

place. Moreover, the actual behavior of those described as exploiters often shows them shunning those that they are said to exploit, in favor of dealing with more prosperous people, from whom they expect to earn more money. -- P. 219

Why Britain became the first industrial nation and retained its preeminence for a century is one of the great questions of history-...What the British had earlier than many other peoples was a framework of law and government that facilitated economic transactions. -- P. 32

If a footrace is conducted under fair conditions, then the result is just, whether that result is the same person winning again and again or a different winner each time. Results do not define justice in the constrained vision. -- P. 89

Failure to use tax money to finance things not liked by the taxpaying public is routinely called 'censorship.' -- P. 123

As of 1989, for example, black, white, and Hispanic Americans of the same age (29) with the same I.Q. (100) all earned between $25,000 and $26,000. -- P. 371

While the pay of such workers is often low by comparison with that of workers in more affluent industrial societies, so too is their productivity. An international consulting firm determined that the average labor productivity in the modern sectors in India is 15 percent of that in the United States. In other words, if you hired an average Indian worker and paid him one-fifth of what you paid an average American worker, it would cost you more to get a given amount of work done in India than in the United States. -- P. 41

The percentage of employed blacks who were professional and technical workers rose less in the five years following the Civil Rights Act of 1964 than in the five years preceding it. -- P. 49

The general orientation of white liberals has been one of 'what can we do for them?' What blacks can do for themselves has not only been of lesser interest, much of what blacks have in fact already done for themselves has been overshadowed by liberal attempts to get them special dispensations- whether affirmative action, reparations for slavery, or other race-based benefits- even when the net effect of these dispensations has been much less than the effects of black‘s own self-advancement. -- P. 55

Sometimes a variety of favorable geographical features exist in combination within a given region, as in northwestern Europe, and sometimes virtually all are lacking, as in much of tropical Africa, while still other parts of the world have some of these favorable features but not others. The consequences include not only large variations in economic well being, but more fundamentally, large variations in the skills and experiences- the human capital- of the people themselves. -- P. 209

In the United States, for example, many of the social problems of the contemporary black underclass are almost automatically attributed to 'a legacy of slavery.' The prevalence of fatherless families in the black ghettos, for example, has been widely explained to the lack of legally constituted families under slavery. But if one proceeds beyond plausibility and guilt to actually seek out the facts, an entirely different picture emerges. -- P. 16

If nothing else, history can help dissolve the provincialism of time and place, and the hypocrisy of selective moral indignation. -- P. 224

-female academics have been common far longer than black academics, reaching a peak proportion of all academics back in 1879 that was not equaled again in the next ninety years...Women with doctorates have for years received those degrees from prestigious institutions about as often as men have, so that they have long been in the so-called 'old boy network' of academic recruitment just like male Ph.D.s. -- P. 82 - 83

reach the top ten percent in individual income required an income of $87,300 in 2004. -- P. 138

For history to contribute to human understanding, its own integrity as history must be respected...A search of the past for group image-enhancement cannot be called history either, nor can a record of the past purged of whatever may be currently embarrassing or whatever is vetoed by contemporary group spokesmen, for whatever reason. -- P. 251