Thursday, October 19, 2006

It's Not What You Know, It's Who You Know

This is a bit stale by now, but Laurin Manning referred to this article about SC Governor Mark Sanford's appearance before the NAACP. When addressing a question about what to do about the pay gap between blacks and whites, Sanford's advice was that black folk should make better use of their rich friends and family:

When members of the NAACP asked Gov. Mark Sanford how the state should handle pay disparity problems between black and white workers, he talked about getting ahead the old-fashioned way.

"If you want to have greater opportunities, it's got to begin somewhere. And generally it begins with somebody knowing someone else," Sanford said Thursday night, eliciting grumbles in the crowd of about 70.

During a discussion at the civil rights group's convention, Sanford was asked what he'd do in a second term to address pay gaps. The meeting was held in Augusta because the South Carolina NAACP is boycotting the state until the Confederate flag is removed from a pole on the Statehouse grounds.

"Let me answer it this way," Sanford said. "I've got this brother who got his first job in New York because my dad knew the guy that he ultimately went to work for."

It wasn't anything sinister or evil, Sanford said. But because of that opportunity, his brother "worked for the company that traded penny stocks and ultimately that led to another opportunity down the road" and buying a company. "Then he spent seven years trying to basically pay off some debt on that company," Sanford said.

"He's a success in life because of personal relationships," Sanford said.

If only all black people would use Sanford's daddy's connection, they'd have no problem getting good paying jobs. And if that didn't work out, they could always off-load their Florida real estate, or own the Texas Rangers and run an oil company for awhile. If you just know the right people or have the right parents, you can do these things without any experience or even basic competence.

I wish Gervais were still blogging, he'd have a field day with this. What can you say about a self-described libertarian governor who thinks that the solution to the inequities of the marketplace is more cronyism and nepotism? The phrase "out-of-touch" doesn't begin to describe it.