In Britain, where individual liberty is rapidly decaying, they are developing a psychological test for job candidates to detect those who give brainspace to "inner racism."
Candidates are asked to put images of black and white faces into categories of "good/positive" and "bad/negative" using arrow keys on the keyboard. By getting them to respond to prompts as quickly as possible, the test aims to side-step what is known as "cognitive control" - the brief, but significant time lapse needed to give an "acceptable" answer rather than an instinctive or "honest" one. The programme then automatically calculates a "response-index" that indicates a level of racial bias.
The test is being developed at London Metropolitan University and is aimed at the public sector and multinational companies. Its developers say it is harder to deceive than many of the psychometric tests used to gauge personality type. The test was condemned last night as a potential "Kafkaesque nightmare" where individuals are penalised for thoughts in their deep subconscious.
This goes beyond speech codes that make everyone go mute on any sensitive subject. It's a step beyond even thought control: soon British government agencies (a huge sector of the workforce in the U.K) and "multinational" companies will become psychometric truffle hounds, rooting around in people's minds for unconscious "racism." Even Stalin would have to admire this new form of eliminating deviationists.
… Nigel Marlow, the principal lecturer in psychology at London Metropolitan who is developing the test, defended its use and said that organisations should take practical steps to screen for subtle "implicit attitudes" and beliefs about racism. "When implicit attitudes are applied, often unwittingly, they can become stereotypical attitudes; a belief that members of some groups have certain negative and positive attributes, often not based on truth or fact," he said.
"The test, which we hope will be available within the next 12 months, is a subtle way to catch racists out. It is based on the implicit attitude theory, which suggests that sometimes people are not even aware of some of their deep-seated biases."
In other words, you can be rejected for employment because of ideas you've never expressed, and that you don't even know you have. Once again, the leering ghost of Uncle Joe pops up. It was Stalin's practice from time to time to have members of the Communist Party and the Soviet government shot at random. It was believed that living with the possibility of being liquidated even without committing an offense would further break the will and individuality of his apparatchiks.
By the same token, today's ordinary citizen, trembling lest he be discovered to contain inner racism, can be made even more dispirited and worried about self-preservation, with a consequent lessening of the strength of character needed to resist.
Like so many other politically correct forms of hunting for witch marks, this "inner racism" test will provoke some dissent — already has, according to the article. Do you think that will make any difference? I don't. The grumbling will soon evaporate, and people will become habituated to one more note of subservience to the Jacobin leanings of contemporary Britain's state control over individuals.
Things haven't gone quite so far in the United States. Not yet. But don't imagine we are immune from the contagion. Today's news includes an item about a Kansas City parks commissioner — yes, parks commissioner — whom "organizations representing various racial and religious groups" and several city councilors want forced out of her position because of her political opinions that have no bearing on her fitness for office. It seems she is against illegal immigration. That makes her "divisive." (Of course, pro-illegal advocates are never divisive.)
Robert Conquest, the great historian of the incalculable damage inflicted on humanity by the Communist and Nazi regimes, has pointed out that these disasters arose not primarily from inherent social problems, but from solutions — solutions that hardened into ideologies, then one-party states based on those ideologies, then into tyranny.
It's true that racism was once, to one degree or another, part of Western civilization. (I mean racism in its real meaning, not as the all-purpose insult tossed around by today's leftists.) And the struggle to eliminate actual racism was a moral and honorable one. But since the struggle was essentially won, anti-racism has developed along the lines of the Soviet system, becoming a fanatical, intolerant creed that has gained political power to the point where it now exercises a great deal of control over daily life.
Will it follow the pattern of its predecessors? The new established civic religion of political correctness is already a "soft" totalitarianism that requires everyone to censor themselves before they speak on certain topics, or cover themselves by prefacing even innocuous statements with disclaimers like, "I don't mean to sound sexist (racist)(xenophobic) etc., but … ."
We've clearly reached the stage of ideological rigidity, and very nearly that of the one-party state, in which Republicans and Democrats alike fight over power but are generally in lockstep on issues like immigration, welfare, and race. We may be some distance yet from tyranny, but from a historical perspective, it's far from a negligible possibility at the rate we're going.
What rough beast … ?