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Continuation of Souther Strategy Neutrality Dispute[edit]

All, Sorry I was unable to post for a while. The neutrality issue associated with the Souther Strategy article is still on going

I would like some moderation input from others. It's clear that we have some who are not happy about adding a more balanced POV to the article as can be seen in the above link. How do we bring this topic back to the front page? Thanks Getoverpops (talk) 14:41, 4 May 2015 (UTC)

Obviously the archived discussion is much too long for non-masochists to read. Would you care to *briefly* summarize the reliable sources which state that the Southern Strategy was not racist, and explain why you believe these are not fringe views? --Sammy1339 (talk) 19:18, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
Every peer reviewed reliable source that was provided spoke to the racist nature of the Southern Strategy. Some emphasized other factors, but still ultimately admitted that an appeal to racist attitudes played a part in it. Even the peer reviewed sources that analyzed other factors in the south admitted that the mainstream view of the Southern Strategy was one that acknowledged an appeal to racism.Scoobydunk (talk) 23:01, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
Good and accurate summary. No support has developed for the POV that is being pushed by one editor. The purpose of this board is to bring other people's eyes to an article that they don't normally watch. Thanks for participating. Tom (North Shoreman) (talk) 01:15, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
That is a dishonest claim and you SHOULD know it. If you can't be honest please don't bother posting.

Sadly, Scubby seems unable to provide a non-baised review of the information that was provided. Sammy, please forgive me but your opening remarks sound biased from the word go. I will leave it at a few things. The article and the editors who are trying to protect it are unwilling to add a section which disputes several claims associated with the article. The biggest issue is the idea that there was some racist southern plan that is why the southern states changed from blue to red. Many of the pier reviewed articles I provided show evidence that the transformation was not related to any racist appeal but instead based the socio-economic outlook of many southern voters better aligning with the GOP. The "racist" part appears to be the notion that the GOP wanted to avoid offending moderate souterners rather than appealing to hard core racists. Scooby, a come lately editor to the article, refuses to allow such information into the article. He also seems to demand a high standard for any source that doesn't fully embrace yet is perfectly OK with low quality material in other parts of the article. Getoverpops (talk) 00:40, 5 May 2015 (UTC)

I can't lie: that does sound like revisionism to me, and it's obviously a minority view. So you can call me biased. But what are the reliable sources that articulate this idea, which you would like represented in the article? --Sammy1339 (talk) 01:01, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
You got that right. The previous discussion generated no serious support for GetOver's position. It's really time to end this. Everyone who wanted to comment had ample time before. Tom (North Shoreman) (talk) 01:25, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
Speaking of biased editors... I can see why people don't want to fight with editors like you who are interested in maintaining liberal biased articles regardless of the facts. I'm sorry that real life kept me away for a bit. We did have some voices of reason who were supporting my arguments. It's not surprising that you would try to forget those. I have to admit, I don't blame others for wanting to stay away. I fear that I will put effort into this and biased editors such as you and Scooby(never posted before I came to the article)dunk.
The specific articles were previously mentioned. I would simply cut and paste the articles. If you read the original dispute request, you will have filter through those who seem to want simply block anything that mitigates the racist telling of the story, you will find that a number of credible sources dispute the claims that the success of the GOP in the south was due to a plan to appeal to racism. Note that on a some level racist claims were made but this would likely be true for both sides at local levels (when you expand the scope too all politicians of either side who have said something dumb, both sides look really bad). Also, the article seems to go back and forth on the extent of this southern strategy. Is it just a short term thing for the Nixon years or all the way through H Bush? It's true that some of the peer reviewed sources I presented said that yes, some appeals were made with the intent to not alienate mildly racist people (there are specific notations about hard core racists) but none said it was a master plan that lasted into the 80s. The reputable sources on the other side also don't support that claim. Part of the issue is the soft, fuzzy nature of what they claim are racist "code words". Is a "code word" really proof or simply a convenient way for one political side to "prove" the other side is racist?
Anyway, I believe the wiki article should have a section that disputes the claims that this was a wide spread strategy that lasted over a number of election cycles. Those are claims which can be backed via the academic articles and writers I have cited. I also think the claims of the other side should be subject to the same level of scrutiny that is expected of my sources. If opinion articles against don't count then opinion articles for shouldn't count either. Getoverpops (talk) 02:03, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
Nothing new here. Three people have responded and you have insulted all of us. Tom (North Shoreman) (talk) 03:05, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
@Getoverpops: After looking over some of what was written in the original discussion, it seems like you rely heavily on opinion pieces. Can you clarify whether you want the article to state that some individuals have this opinion, or whether you want Wikipedia's voice not to assert unconditionally that the Southern Strategy appealed to racism? The latter requires a reliable source, such as one with editorial oversight, to dispute this idea. For the former it would also be better to have a reliable secondary source discussing these individual opinions. Can you point to such sources? --Sammy1339 (talk) 04:02, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
@Sammy1339: Thanks for taking a look. Perhaps I was to quick to assume you were one sided. Three comments: First, the article seems to cover the strategy as a proven fact and as something that had a wide ranging impact on elections. Thus I would like to call into question some of the assumptions that previously the article took for granted. Prior to my earlier edits the article was getting a number of facts out of op-ed articles. I've tried to clean that up but the "what it was/is" stuff still reads like a conspiracy theory. Very questionable statements are taken as proof. At the most basic level we (the article) should be able to tell us what the strategy was, in precise term (specific examples of how it was used, over what time period etc). Currently we have a Nixon aid who claims it was a thing and another who disagrees. It's hard to judge why each feels as they do and what there motivations were for speaking. But the article and some sources imply this was a strategy that was used through H Bush. Well where is the proof? That's were we get a conspiracy theory type answer. It was "code words". These code words included things like welfare reform. If wanting welfare reform is the "proof" then we need something better since it's possible one wants reform to harm minorities who use the system or because they feel the system wasn't working well. If that is an issue important to southern voters is it racist or simply appealing to the voters? The point is the article needs to be more concrete about what is alleged so that the reader can better judge the facts. The articles I've found seem to suggest that Nixon's aids did talk about crafting a message that would avoid offending conservative southern voters but it's not clear there was a racist message. Thus is that a "racist southern strategy" or just a "southern strategy" that was sensitive to the voters but didn't promise anything racist?
Second, things get more confused when you factor in local and state elections vs nationals. At the local and state level it's harder to say if some state GOP'er didn't say or promise something that was directly or obliquely appealing to racist voters. Thus if a sources says, "yes there was a southern strategy" can we really take that to mean a racist one or just a plan to be sensitive or what? What is the scope of the thing the writer is talking about? Does it mean when Regan talked about welfare reform he was actually using Nixon's "racist southern strategy"? Basically the vague claims need to be replaced with some concrete statement around which the article can hang it's hat.
Third, my sources are largely from academics in the field (thus expert opinion) or peer reviewed articles. Much of the "pro" work is based on opinion articles and really is no better in quality. I've tried to police the article to some extent by demanding page numbers for some sources and asking that opinion articles in the media be cited as such. I've had some luck with that. Anyway, I feel that my list of references is at least on par with the quality of sources used in the existing article as "proof". Note I'm not evaluating the long and unnecessary section of the article which discusses the rise of the solid south etc. It's an excessively long history section but aside from too many words (a flaw I sometimes share) it doesn't detract from the quality of the article. (ASIDE NOTE: I will be gone starting tomorrow through the end of the week. That doesn't mean I don't want to continue with the improvements to the article, like before sometimes we have lives outside the web). ThanksGetoverpops (talk) 04:58, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
The sources in the article are mostly aligned with the academic consensus among peer reviewed literature that the Southern Strategy was an appeal to racism. Your sources are not aligned with this mainstream consensus and your peer reviewed sources actually support the narrative of an appeal to racism discussed in the article. It is very clear that there was a racial message and here are diffs with direct quotes from peer reviewed reliable sources that discuss the appeals to racism and racial attitudes utilized by the Southern Strategy. [1][2]Scoobydunk (talk) 07:13, 5 May 2015 (UTC)

You don't even understand the point I'm making. As someone who was never an editor before I posted here why are you even in this discussion? So on to your "points", some sources say the points were appeals to racism. Other peer reviewed sources say the points were attempts to avoid upsetting voters but were not appeals to racism. Furthermore, you need to scope the duration and extends of this souther strategy. If one politician does something that could be seen as racism is that enough proof for you? I addressed your references last time. It seems your intent this time is to again so muddy the waters as to make this neutrality dispute all but unreadable. That was the extent of your contribution last time. Please don't try to cloud the issue as was your previous strategy. Getoverpops (talk) 07:24, 5 May 2015 (UTC)

All of the peer reviewed sources discussed the racial aspects of the Southern Strategy and none of them claimed that it was not an appeal to racism. It's not our responsibility to question reliable sources and to try and refute them with our own arguments, which is what you're trying to do with questions like "If one politician does something that could be seen as racism is that enough proof for you?" It doesn't matter what's "proof" for me, what matters is what strong reliable sources say. So it's actually questions like this that "muddy the waters" because they are irrelevant when considering what reliable sources say. Also, providing and quoting peer reviewed sources is not "unreadable" for most people with an interest in the perspective held by scholars. Lastly, I ask that you cease with the false accusations and personal attacks.Scoobydunk (talk) 13:06, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
This is not exactly true. They all state that at some levels appeals to racism were used. It is not clear that at the presidential level they were used. For example the current Wiki claims even Reagen used appeals to racism. However, the quoted Atwater interview is truncated in the southern strategy article. If we look at the Wiki entry on Atwater that contains more of the interview we see something different [[3]]. Atwater says Regan, " But Reagan did not have to do a southern strategy for two reasons. Number one, race was not a dominant issue. And number two, the mainstream issues in this campaign had been, quote, southern issues since way back in the sixties. So Reagan goes out and campaigns on the issues of economics and of national defense. The whole campaign was devoid of any kind of racism, any kind of reference. "
So currently the Wiki entry is trying to imply this was a policy that extended into the H Bush years yet one of the key references that "proves" the strategy says it was not a strategy later. Also, even as he states it, we are talking about something that anti-GOP people will try to spin as clear racism yet a reasonable reader can see as political reality, capturing votes by avoiding inflaming and the like. Getoverpops (talk) 13:48, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
Talk about "muddying the waters" you assert that the Southern Strategy didn't appeal to racism, were proved to be incorrect, and now try and shift the argument to which Presidents used them and to what extent. This is the type of red herring argument you previously made and, by definition, red herring arguments detract from the actual conversation/argument.Scoobydunk (talk) 00:18, 6 May 2015 (UTC)
@Getoverpops: You seem to be arguing a position, which is not what this noticeboard is for. NPOV is about proportionally representing the positions of reliable sources, not being right. Having looked through your references from the previous discussion, I did not find any reliable secondary sources which endorse the idea that the Southern Strategy was not an appeal to racism, or address your other concerns. You cited Gerard Alexander, who is an academic, but you only cited his opinion pieces, not his peer-reviewed publications (and you pointed to WP:NEWSORG as saying that these should be taken as the reliable opinion of an expert, but the policy only says "The opinions of specialists and recognized experts are more likely to be reliable and to reflect a significant viewpoint. If the statement is not authoritative, attribute the opinion to the author in the text of the article and do not represent it as fact.") If you think there is something I missed, please bring it to attention here. To your point about the article's existing references being low-quality: that's a good reason to clean them up, but not a good reason to introduce more low-quality references. --Sammy1339 (talk) 13:11, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
The issue I have is that the liberal biased editors who are guarding the article have been unwilling to add references that, as I have shown ARE the views of peer reviewed authors and experts in the field. A number of these authors have stated that the "southern strategy" was not responsible for the defection of the south from the Dems to the GOP. That information isn't in the current Wiki and should be. I think several of the objecting editors, certainly the vocal ones, fail to see what I want to add thus they are arguing from a false position. I have made this clear but to little avail. I also would like to note that several editors have been critical of this article in the past but I think few want to fight a group of liberal biased editors who want to undo any edit that doesn't fit their narrative. Getoverpops (talk) 13:48, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
To answer your earlier question, this diff [4] represents what GetOver wanted to add. The problems are (1) this is the article lede and the body of the article does not discuss the minority/fringe opinion (2) there is a WEIGHT problem -- GetOver wants to treat the minority/fringe opinion with the same weight as the majority/consensus (3) the sourcing (i.e. Pat Buchanan and a book review rather than the actual book) and (4)he reverts a well documented apology for the GOP pursuing its Southern Strategy. Tom (North Shoreman) (talk) 13:26, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
I wish you would stop lying about what you THINK I want to add. While I previously added that text you have convinced me that it wouldn't be correct. What I want to add, and ask if you agree, is a section covering the views of historians who say that the scope of the "racist appeal" was not as wide spread as some sources claim and that it's impact was not significant. Do you agree to adding something along those lines? As for your claim of weight, that would be valid if I wanted to replace the current view with a new one. Instead I am insisting that the second view be represented in the article. Currently that is not the case. Sadly I feel I will have to edit the article, put up with you trying to revert those edits then return to dispute resolution to get them to stay. Remember I am basing my views on peer reviewed sources and expert opinions (I established this previously)Getoverpops (talk) 13:48, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
If there are reliable secondary sources which take this position, then yes. "Peer-reviewed authors" are not sufficient. Peer-reviewed articles are what we're looking for. (Of course there are other types of RS's as well.) It would also be helpful if you could list here the sources you would like to use, as this discussion is much too abstract. --Sammy1339 (talk) 15:06, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
Yes, several of the sources I linked to were books published by university presses and peer reviewed articles. I listed a number of sources later in the original neutrality dispute. Getoverpops (talk) 15:11, 5 May 2015 (UTC)
Can you list them again? --Sammy1339 (talk) 15:35, 5 May 2015 (UTC)

@Sammy1339: Sorry for the delay.

  • Dan McLaughlin, [1] This is clearly an opinion article. However that puts in on the same footing as the Herbert articles mentioned above. This is a blog quality source reviewing a book (mentioned below). The book in question "The Lost Majority: Why the Future of Government Is Up for Grabs - and Who Will Take It" by [[5]]. The reviewer contends the book first supports the notion that pandering to racism was not the reason for the south to move the GOP. This is consistent with several other articles and probably should be mentioned in the southern article as a point in and of itself Given the detail in the Wiki entry it would seem appropriate to include sources that discuss the reasons voters changed parties. If the evidence is the majority didn't move for racial reasons then that undermines the significance of any southern strategy to appeal to racism elements.

Gerard Alexander: [2] This is an opinion article by an academic researcher in the field. The article questions the GOP's need to court southern voters at any cost. Thus the same candidates who were fighting for civil rights in the late 50s and early to mid 60s were unlikely to quickly change their tack to appeal to a segment if the need wasn't as critical. This supports the claims by other sources that claim the GOP was race sensitive to the south but did not (at least at the presidential level) play to racist fears or make promises that would specifically target racists (the general thrust of some tellings of the southern strategy).

Wallace voters ended up supporting Nixon, Reagan and other Republicans, but much more on the national GOP's terms than their own. The Republican Party proved to be the mountain to which the Deep South had to come, not the other way around. This explains why the second assumption is also wrong. Nixon made more symbolic than substantive accommodations to white Southerners. He enforced the Civil Rights Act and extended the Voting Rights Act. On school desegregation, he had to be prodded by the courts in some ways but went further than them in others: He supervised a desegregation of Deep South schools that had eluded his predecessors and then denied tax-exempt status to many private "desegregation academies" to which white Southerners tried to flee. Nixon also institutionalized affirmative action and set-asides for minorities in federal contracting.

Sean Trende: [3] Author is opinion writer. Includes the claim that McGovern was too liberal to get strong southern support and hence Nixon got much of the vote by default. This again supports the notion that a southern strategy was one which avoided antagonizing rather than appealing to racial feelings.

Kevin Williamson: [4]Another article supporting the theory that GOP successes in the south started prior to '68 and during a time when the GOP was pushing for more civil rights protections than the Democrats. This is yet another source that says the shift wasn't based on race. That doesn't prove no racist plans were laid but again, it supports the idea that the GOP was more likely to try to walk a fine line (not antagonize) vs appeal to. Note that in searching the reliable source archives I've found that NR is considered a reliable source even though it is a right leaning source.

Gerard Alexander: [5] I have been accused of cherry picking from this article. However, if the wiki article is about presidential campaigns only then, no, no cherry picking here. The author (same as WP author above) says that the repubs in the south had to engage in nasty politics to win elections, that was political expedience.

The mythmakers typically draw on two types of evidence. First, they argue that the GOP deliberately crafted its core messages to accommodate Southern racists. Second, they find proof in the electoral pudding: the GOP captured the core of the Southern white backlash vote. But neither type of evidence is very persuasive. It is not at all clear that the GOP's policy positions are sugar-coated racist appeals. And election results show that the GOP became the South's dominant party in the least racist phase of the region's history, and got—and stays—that way as the party of the upwardly mobile, more socially conservative, openly patriotic middle-class, not of white solidarity.

The bolded text (my emphasis) hits the key point. What ever the "southern strategy" was the key point of the strategy towards the south at the time, according to a number of authors, was not to appeal to racism. It seems instead they were racially cognizant and crafted a message not to offend. This also aligns with the previous comments that Nixon was not interested in offering much to southern politicians in exchange for support.

[Later in the original discussion Neutrality dispute] Here is a peer reviewed article that denounces the idea,, Michelle Brattain, Foretting the South and the Southern Strategy (Published in Miranda, author is Department Chair of History at Georgia State University)

Wrapped up in this narrative of party realignment is the most “modern” article of faith behind Southern exceptionalism: the Republican “Southern strategy.” Richard Nixon and his advisors, the story goes, stole a page from the Goldwater and Wallace playbooks and wooed white Southern voters into the Republican party with appeals to festering racial resentments.

... Thus contributors to The Myth of Southern Exceptionalism frequently turn their gaze elsewhere—reminding us not only that whites rioted against housing integration in Pennsylvania, but that segregation (of the Chinese) existed out west, and that NY prisons could be as brutal as Mississippi's notorious Parchman Farm. ... To those who are tempted to draw a straight line from Goldwater, through Wallace, to Nixon and beyond as evidence of Republicans manipulating white Southerners through carefully coded appeals to their racism, the new critics of Southern exceptionalism point to other, less-well-known forces working at the grassroots of Southern politics and culture—namely, moderation. This was true, as historian Joseph Crespino shows, even in the “most Southern place on earth”: Mississippi. ... By 1970, Lassiter argues, white Southerners preferred moderate policies and candidates who employed a language of abstract principles over open defiance and political extremists—a lesson that Nixon learned the hard way. One of the few “genuine” incarnations of the Southern strategy, Lassiter argues, was Nixon's decision in the 1970 midterm elections to lend his support to the Southern Republican candidates who represented the most extreme racial backlash to court-ordered school desegregation and busing. In theory (Kevin Phillip's theory to be precise) such a strategy would have hastened Southern partisan realignment. However, centrist Democrats triumphed over race-baiting Republicans in several key gubernatorial and Congressional elections. ... The national success of Nixon's appeal to middle-class whites who disdained social engineering in the name of racial equality is an extraordinarily important historical insight that challenges myths about American racial innocence. The similarity of white responses to busing across regions, for example, and the hypocrisy of Hubert Humphrey and other non-Southern Democratic liberals who resisted the application of integrationist remedies in their own backyards has newly exposed the emptiness of distinctions between de jure and de facto segregation (Crespino 178-180).

And another book that doesn't agree... Matthew Lassiter, "The Silent Majority" Princeton University Press. Page 232:

The three-way contest allowed Nixon to stake out the political center, by design and by default, as the respectable choice for middle-class voters who rejected the Great Society liberalism of Hubert Humphrey and the reactionary racial populism of George Wallace. In the first national election in which suburban residents constituted a plurality of the electorate, the Nixon campaign reached out to disaffected blue-collar Democrats but aimed primarily at white-collar Republicans and moderate swing voters in the metropolitan centers of the Sunbelt South and West and the upwardly mobile suburbs of the Midwest and Northeast. Nixon forfeited the African-American vote to the Democratic party and conceded the Deep South to the Wallace insurgency, in recognition that the Goldwater debacle of 1964 had reversed Republican trends in the high-growth states of the Outer South.

Melvin Small, "A Companion to Richard M. Nixon", John Wiley and Sons.

This "Southern Strategy/civil-rights retreat" thesis became the first, and thus the orthodox, interpretation of the administration's policies. It would be sustained in the years immediately after Nixon left office, by two groups of writers. The first were those who used the Vietnam War and the Watergate scandal as their points of reference for understanding Nixon's presidency. ...

This claim that Nixon's policies rested on liberal words and conservative deeds was exactly the opposite of what later scholars would argue.


There was other evidence that Nixon was not very interested in civil rights - he devoted ten pages of his nearly 1,100-page memoir to the subject. Yet, what he wrote suggested statesmanship, not sacrificing civil-rights enforcement for southern votes. Nixon expressed "justifiable price" in "peacefully desegregating schools in the South".

Many of Nixon's advisers agreed and emphasized the desegregation of school in their memoirs. "Nixon inherited a dual school system declared unconstitutional fifteen years earlier," the speechwriter Raymond Price noted in "With Nixon, "He quietly engineered its dismantling." With respect to politics, Price reiterated a line used by Nixon, that the administration had no Southern Strategy but a national strategy that included the South and that it had desegregated schools "cooperatively rather than punitively". In Before the Fall, another speechwriter, William Safire, described the president's approach to desegregation as genuinely moderate and extremely skillful - a policy of "make-it-happen, but don't make it seam like Appomattox."


In Nixon Reconsidered, Joan Hoff warned against "aprincipled behavior by purely ambition-driven politicians" in the United State, with its toxic mix of powerful government and superficial "media politics." In this setting, Nixon was no worse and , according to Hoff, a bit better in terms of what he achieved than other recent chief executives. She even insisted that, "most of his lasting achievements are in domestic, rather than foreign, affairs." Civil rights was a case in point. In a rejoinder to the orthodox school, Hoff defended Nixon's record as superior to that of Dwight D. Eisenhower, JFK and LBJ during the 1950s and as better than any candidate he ran against, save Hubert Humphrey in 1968. She dismissed Nixon's Southern Strategy as "short-lived"; praised his effective, albeit, "reluctant," desegregation of Southern schools; noted that it was Nixon, not Kennedy or Johnson, who put the "bite" into affirmative action; and chronicled the administration's efforts to expand opportunities for women, especially with respect to employment, despite the fact that Nixon's support of the Equal Rights Amendment was never terribly strong.

[some important points here]

The scholarly literature on the Nixon administration and civil rights has evolved in two directions. At one level , early students of this presidency established an orthodox interpretation of his policies , one that stressed the administration's conservatism and shortcomings in pursuit of a "Southern Strategy." As time passed, and as documentary evidence became available and passions cooled, scholars revised this argument and depicted the Nixon administration's civil-rights policies as complex, in terms of motivation, accomplishment, and affect. At another level, understanding of specific aspects of Nixon's rights policies has deepened , as they became the subjects of articles, book chapters, and monographs. As a result, the historiography on this subject has reached a high level of maturity and sophistication . And, yet, much remains to be studied.

So what is the bar to show that the "southern strategy" was an appeal to racism? Is being anti-bussing racism or people who feel like they put their tax dollars into their local school and they don't want to pay for kids who's parents didn't pay the local taxes to attend nor do they want their kids sent to a distant school? If we think Nixon's plan was to use racist policies can we point to any under his watch? Part of the Southern Stategy wiki article talks about the impact of the "strategy". The sources I've cited generally disagree with the idea of a southern strategy. They don't argue that some things said or done by the administration were based on race but if that is the standard do we really think any campaign is 100% clear? They also argue that the overall objective was to play the middle ground. The articles are far stronger in their idea that it was the average southern voter who's views were better represented by the Republicans and less by an increasingly progressive Democratic party that was the real cause of the shift. Hence any discussion of the "Southern Strategy" would, if they are correct, reach the conclusion that the strategy had at best a minimal impact.

Regardless, there is a clear body of evidence that does not support the telling in the current Wiki. I'm not saying the wiki needs to be changed to this version of events, only that we have enough to state this version of events should be included. --Getoverpops (talk) 04:18, 29 March 2015 (UTC)

I think the article should handle this topic in two parts. First, we should have the Nixon era information. That should be followed with information supporting the claims of later elections. For example, as I mentioned earlier, Atwater talks about the GOP NOT using a "southern strategy" during Regan's election because it wasn't needed. Regan's message was the same as he would deliver to the southern states, a message he was using previously to win the governorship in his state. The article suggests this was a "strategy" that was carried on past the 80s but offers no real evidence of such. Even the claims that Nixon used such a strategy are questionable. Not that such a strategy was considered but when Nixon's records are reviewed (see my references above) it's clear he was not bending over to appeal to the racist voters. Note, one reference did say that the GOP did try a few racist appeals during a mid-term election during the Nixon presidency.

Finally, it should be noted that we are talking about a political topic. What is the motive for many of those who promote the "GOP won the south through appeal to racism" narrative? It would seem obvious that they are trying to taint the political waters. It also appears that they have some success. This is perhaps one of the largest flaws of the article. It seems to take the most negative telling of the narrative as gospel without acknowledging the motives of those who are telling the tail. This is why it's important that the article give space to reliable sources which argue the scope and impact of the claimed southern strategy was not what popular mythology has created. One last thing, I would ask that so long as this is an on going conversation, SD and NS refrain from provocation such as removing the article dispute tag.Getoverpops (talk) 02:54, 10 May 2015 (UTC)

The vast majority of these sources are useless opinion pieces that don't stand up to the peer reviewed sources that confirm the Southern Strategy was an appeal to racism instituted by Republicans. The rest of the sources have basically been copy and pasted from the previous discussion and have already been refuted. Getoverpops is just rehashing the same arguments a second time and, again, is cherry picking information from those sources. The information he bolded doesn't even support his claim that the Southern Strategy wasn't an appeal to racism. At most one source says that it wasn't "sugar coated" but that's not a denial of its existence. Furthermore, in my refutation I quoted multiple parts from each source that showed that the authors recognized the Southern Strategy's appeal to racist attitutdes which directly contradict the implications Getoverpops makes from his irrelevant quoted/bolded material. Read it here[6] Scoobydunk (talk) 22:15, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
This was the same opinion you had last time. It was wrong then and hasn't improved. I find it questionable that you are so particular about the quality of my sources yet you are OK with many of the low quality sources otherwise used in the article. That, like your unprovoked attacks on me when you randomly decided to join a conversation about an article for which you had never contributed does draw your motives into question. Anyway, I already addressed your claims. Some of the sources are peer reviewed. Others are expert opinion (academics in the field). While those expert views are to a lower standard than peer reviewed work, they are considered reliable sources by Wikipedia. Furthermore, before you start crying out about "weight" remember that I only want to add a counter view to the article. As such it does not require that I show that these sources have more weight, only that they have enough weight to be included as a counter view. So I will leave with this question for you, why did you randomly pick this topic to be all concerned about after I contributed to it? Seems odd does it not?Getoverpops (talk) 00:01, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
My claims weren't "wrong" it was directly supported by the very same sources you tried to cherry pick from and I provided direct quotes to substantiate my claims. You didn't refute my claims before and you failed to do it again just now. Instead, all you continued to repeat was "that's certainly an opinion you have" which is not constructive and, like I've said before, you've yet to provide anything new to this discussion. Adding a "counter view" to the article requires it to be represented by equally reliable sources. Unfortunately for you, your peer reviewed sources don't support a "counter view" that the Southern Strategy wasn't racist and actually confirm that it was an appeal to racism. On top of that, minority opinions, even if they are represented in an equally strong source, have to merit enough weight before they can be included in the article. Also, when you go onto a noticeboard looking for input from uninvolved parties, then it should be expected that uninvolved parties will give you input. This shouldn't be too hard to figure out and it's perplexing that you keep referring to seeking outside assistance and receiving said assistance as "odd". It's not odd, it's exactly what you sought. I've also given feedback on other topics in this board which is what many editors do. Also, I never said that I was ok with the quality of sources on the article and think they should be changed to reference the strongest sources. I feel if the article was written from peer reviewed sources from the beginning, then we could avoid POV pushers trying to force their incorrect narrative based on op-eds, and it would save time for editors who actually do care about quality sources and making sure WP reflects those sources. Cheers.Scoobydunk (talk) 03:48, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
Actually they were wrong. The sources I have added are split between experts in the field and peer reviewed sources. That makes them sufficient for inclusion as a POV in the article. You of course are welcome to beef up the sections that support the other views. As for the rest of your complaint... well if you had ever edited the article before you started trolling my account via the neutrality request board perhaps I would give your opinion some more weight. I have taken the feed back I received in both this discussion and the previous one and made chances to the article. If you don't like the changes we can take it to the talk section. If you revert without taking them to talk section it will be clear that you are trying to start an edit war and I will report it as such. If you think my references are of insufficient weight then I would suggest we move that to the appropriate board. Your appeal to the edit war notice is all the proof one needs to see that you have no intention to carry out an open and unbiased discussion of the topic. Getoverpops (talk) 05:03, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
@Getoverpops: Your sources consist of four opinion pieces and a book published by a biased source, the Claremont Institute. There is a case to be made for including a sentence stating that conservative writers have questioned whether Southern voters' shift to the Republican party was primarily motivated by racism, and attributing this idea to them. However, because of issues of weight, that's about all that should be included. I appreciate your efforts and I would have liked to have given you more, but without peer-reviewed journals or the like to cite, Wikipedia's voice cannot be used to express these points of view. I hope this won't discourage you from editing on other topics, where the kind of energy you've obviously put into this discussion could be very fruitful. --Sammy1339 (talk) 16:06, 12 May 2015 (UTC)


  1. ^ McLaughlin, Dan. "The Southern Strategy Myth and the Lost Majority". 
  2. ^ Alexander, Gerard (Sept 12, 2010). "Conservatism does not equal racism. So why do many liberals assume it does?". Washington Post. Retrieved March 25, 2015.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  3. ^ Trende, Sean (Sept 9, 2010). "Misunderstanding the Southern Realignment". Real Clear Politics. Retrieved March 25, 2015.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  4. ^ Williamson, Kevin (May 28, 2012). [The Party of Civil Rights Read more at: "The Party of Civil Rights"]. National Review. Retrieved March 25, 2015. 
  5. ^ Alexander, Gerard (March 20, 2004). "The Myth of the Racist Republicans". The Claremont Review of Books 4 (2). Retrieved March 25, 2015. 

Dru yoga[edit]


Hi all. On Dru yoga there's a whole bunch of new editors making edits that are in my opinion "activist" in nature. The sources added are all cult awareness websites. I re-wrote the Dutch article, after checking on anonymous changes, and then the English one. An extra pair of eyes is always welcome. Honestly, it may just be a cult, though I'm not certain the reliable sources support that enough to put it in the article. Our new colleagues are becoming a bit of a nuisance, since they don't participate on the talk page. Being accused of acting for the Life Foundation I can live with/laugh at. Thanks, Sander1453 (talk) 10:35, 12 May 2015 (UTC)

I'm approaching 3RR, not much I can do now. Will someone help? Thanks, Sander1453 (talk) 18:37, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
Hi there, my name is Hayrettin and I am helping Sander1453 on this Dru Yoga page at the moment. We are clearly facing some issues with lots of multiple editors reverting our work over and over again. I am quite sure all of these accounts are managed by the same person. The guy is adding plenty of unreliable sources to justify negative content and constantly deleting neutral content to make the organisation look really awful. Even though I might agree on objectivity for some of the facts, this clearly seems like an attack. Waiting for an answer. Best, Hayrettin Van Aken (talk) 07:50, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
I'm suspecting sockpuppetry too. As for spamming of activist sites and POV pushing: is it? Or are Hayrettin and I stubborn and unreasonable?Face-smile.svg Multiple issues and we really need the extra pair of eyes. Thanks, Sander1453 (talk) 08:58, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

Contentwise resolved by Sammy1339, nice and short. Disruptive editing (imho) continues, by some of the same users, over here and on Dutch Wikipedia, where a CU found a positive match between four of them. Will file an SPI later today, depending: my fellow Dutch admin Natuur12 thinks it's for the stewards. Regards, Sander1453 (talk) 18:35, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

See nl:Overleg gebruiker:Greetjematsesas/blockmsg. I blocked a couple of those accounts over there after a CU confirmed that they are sockpuppets. Natuur12 (talk) 18:38, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

Once the edit-warring is under control, the article needs reworking, maybe a complete rewrite. --Ronz (talk) 19:08, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

Indeed. With any luck an editor who's actually into yoga. I think Hayrettin might just be that. With the socks blocked, can I call this one resolved? Sander1453 (talk) 22:07, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

Giuliano Mignini[edit]

A Wikipedia administrator inserted a fly-by POV tag into an article. I thought that the POV tag cast doubt on the factual accuracy of the article and so I objected to it. Another editor removed it. The administrator reinstated it, and so on, resulting in an edit war. I took the question of biased use of a POV tag to dispute resolution but that got nowhere because all concerned where attacking each other's POV (not surprisingly in my POV). My straightforward question is, can a POV tag be placed in an article without subtstantiation and, if disputed, for how long and under what circumstances may it remain there?

My question is a general one but should you want background information in this specific case then please see the Giuliano Mignini article, its recent history, and its associated talk page.

Thank you. I want to know. JoeMCMXLVII (talk) 20:51, 14 May 2015 (UTC)

POV tags are not supposed to be permanent, whoever places it should immediately post on the article's talk page explaining as to why they have posted it there, the tag should then be removed after a resolution is found. SilverSurfingSerpant (talk) 12:06, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

Ford Pinto[edit]

The Ford Pinto article has been the subject of a long-simmering dispute over the amount of weight to give a paper by an attorney who says that the Pinto's dangerous reputation is overblown (and how to interpret that paper, since there's some dispute over what it says and what that means.) There haven't been very many users involved (and most of them only edit the article sporadically), which has, I think, made it somewhat harder to reach a resolution, but you can see a lot of the older discussions on the talk page. Describing the whole controversy is complex, but mostly the issue is that the paper has not been mentioned in many reliable sources (and those that do often seem to refer to it in a way that I feel implies that it's a WP:FRINGE view.) Regardless, it has at times had an entire section of the article devoted to it, been given equal weight in the lead with all alternative views, and so on. The Pinto is a very famous case and has had a huge amount written about it from various perspectives, so I feel that all of this is giving WP:UNDUE weight to the opinions and interpretations of a single attorney. --Aquillion (talk) 07:46, 19 May 2015 (UTC)

Looking at the listed sources I would say you have three that are really strong. Those are the academic articles/books that deal specifically with the car. Some articles seem to mention the car out of hand but Birsch, Schwartz and Lee are really the strongest sources you have. These are the peer reviewed sources I see on the list. If you feel the editor is misusing the information in the article then I would go for that angle. I don't think you could call any of those sources or their views fringe. I would be more inclined to question Mother Jones as a source of reliable information since it appears they got a number of facts wrong. However, since they were an early source on the subject and framed much of the debate it makes sense to quote them. I see a number of parallels between what you are looking at and the article I've been reviewing. Getoverpops (talk) 00:34, 20 May 2015 (UTC)

Butcher_of_Gujarat dispute[edit]

There is a Wikipedia:Redirects_for_discussion/Log/2015_May_21#Butcher_of_Gujarat discussion going on here there has been alleged canvassing ,edit warring and claims of WP:BLP violation as it redirects to Narendra Modi which in turn is rebutted by claims of WP:RNEUTRAL.Pharaoh of the Wizards (talk) 15:33, 22 May 2015 (UTC)

Countries in Europe[edit]

Hello all,
There's a disagreement about whether our article on Kosovo belongs in Category:Countries in Europe. Like most Kosovo NPOV problems, the usual people on each side have said their piece and we've ground to a halt. Outside views would be very welcome. Any suggestions? bobrayner (talk) 14:11, 24 May 2015 (UTC)

The status of Kosovo is a hot topic. Bobrainer has been for long time a partisan promoter of Kosovo independence on Wikipedia articles and his intentional unwillingness to understand the complexity is disruptive. He behaves as if he is unaware of all, and he finds one source treating Kosovo as independent country and thinks it should be accepted as universal truth. Obviously WP:UNDUE applies, cause roughly half of countries of the world recognized Kosovo independence, the other half didn't, some organisations accepted Kosovo, some didnt. Bobrainer is an extremely problematic editor on Kosovo-related topics because he always does its best to present the pro-independence POV and ignore the other view or even the complexity of the issue. FkpCascais (talk) 11:13, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
I think this says more about you than about me:

Bobrainer has been for long time a partisan promoter of Kosovo independence on Wikipedia articles and his intentional unwillingness to understand the complexity is disruptive.
— User:FkpCascais

Yes, escape... You don't have any maps or articles because Albania was never big or shrinked or blabla... You just talk bullshit, go to school pal and learn some history. Good bye you nationalist dreamer and keep on hating Serbs, good for you, do whatever. If something shrinked it was not Albania for sure, but your brain...
— User:FkpCascais

One sincere question: you are so partisan allways about it, are you being payed for editing Kosovo subjects just the way Albanian nationalist want? Because if you are you should step out of this subjects right away.
— User:FkpCascais

...and so on. Let's try to avoid personal attacks, and stick to the point, please. Should our article on Kosovo be in Category:Countries in Europe? bobrayner (talk) 13:41, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
Why are you mixing a comment I made long time ago to an editor who came to my talk-page promoting Greater Albania and I made fun of him? Do you personaly feel involved in it? (The second one you posted here, the first and third were indeed directed to you)FkpCascais (talk) 13:49, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
This is the discussion you removed that comment from and you didn't even participated in it, the discussion was only between me and the other user. You wanted to mislead others here that I that I attacked you, such low punch on your behalve, shame on you. FkpCascais (talk) 13:56, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
Let's try to avoid personal attacks, and stick to the point, please. Should our article on Kosovo be in Category:Countries in Europe? Uninvolved editors would be welcome. bobrayner (talk) 14:18, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
Until there's no longer a dispute over Kosovo's status either way, it shouldn't be placed in the category-in-question. by GoodDay. But i guess that you will ignore this outsider's observation, as you dont like it. Maybe it is time for you to drop the subject and leave. #JustSaying...--Ąnαșταη (ταlκ) 15:09, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
Hello Anastan! I'm glad you found time to comment.
You've been insisting that there are many reliable sources which say Kosovo isn't a country in Europe. If you'd like to retain some credibility, you really ought to provide those sources. Perhaps that's a higher priority than cherrypicking one comment which suits your current position. bobrayner (talk) 16:25, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
I will, but on the relevant page, where you should be too. I could guess that you will mention "cherrypicking" for a comment that does not suit your current position, and actually is a . uninvolved editor's comment. --Ąnαșταη (ταlκ) 16:54, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
Since I have played a large part in the discussion and the editing, it is only right I state my case for outsiders. We know that there are sources that call Kosovo "a country" as it is recognised by over 50% of states. In fact many entities are called "countries" in many reliable sources such as the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic and Somaliland but the general pattern is that where sovereignty is disputed by the entity from which one is breaking away, these are not included in their respective "countries in" category. To date, nobody has provided an argument as to why Kosovo deserves an accolade denied to Republic of China which was before 1971 on the UN Security Council, and the State of Palestine which has 135 recognitions, a number I personally predict Kosovo will not reach given the gradual slowdown in incoming recognitions since 2008 (as with Libya, it would need pro-west revolutions to take place in dozens of countries before this became a reality). That summarises my view. --Oranges Juicy (talk) 18:21, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

I agree with Kosovo's inclusion in Category:Countries in Europe being in violation of NPOV. Many editors aspire to elevate Kosovo's independence status to equal with Romania or Germany, but that category is not the place to begin. If we cannot agree that the opening line should be "Kosovo is a country" for any reason then it is illogical to follow suit with other listings. For example, attempting an indirect precedent on a category page is like moving Kosovo from the second list to the first at Template:Vehicle registration plates of Europe. It would be pointless to do that unless you moved them all and abolished the "States with limited recognition" cell. --Vrhunski (talk) 00:24, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

Hello, Vrhunski. I notice that (a) this is the first time you've ever edited a noticeboard, (b) this is your first edit in two months, and (c) this topic area has long had problems with sockpuppets and onsite & offsite canvassing. What brings you here? bobrayner (talk) 20:45, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
I am free to edit where I so choose, and locating this discussion was not difficult since it is hardly obscure. You sought opinions from uninvolved editors and I gave you one, though clearly you do not appreciate it. If you suspect sockpuppetry, be my guest and do the honours of reporting me. Had I been one of those to have edited here then I could have extended my "original comment" with the points I raised. If my "other account" has not been used on this noticeboard then I am not in any contravention by editing here, right? As for what I have been doing these past two months or even past two years, the answer is none of your business. In the meantime, unless you can prove the rest of us wrong in our observations I suggest you keep your eyes and ears open, and you mouth firmly shut!! :) That way you might learn something :) Thank you! --Vrhunski (talk) 22:09, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
In other news: Anastan has been insisting that there are many reliable sources which say Kosovo isn't a country in Europe. Anastan still hasn't provided any sources. Can Anastan provide these sources, or is it just another sleight-of-hand? bobrayner (talk) 20:50, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
That comment has now become stale and you know very well that the arguments to oppose Kosovo appearing at Category:Countries in Europe does not rest on one or more statements from Anastan that state Kosovo is not a country. And what? Shall we just say Islamic State is a country because no source (at least on Serbian Google) finds no source to dispute this? [7]. --Vrhunski (talk) 22:09, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

COI Draft Review Request[edit]

User:FacultiesIntact has asked me to review their Draft for the article Honeywell. Their Draft can be found here. They have a COI on the topic and thus would like outside review and implementation of the draft. I've looked it over and it looks fine to me. There has been a significant expansion of the history section and the various divisions of the company. While there has been some minor reformatting of the Environmental record and Criticism sections, no content appears to have been lost, so no issues regarding the COI there.

Can I get some confirmation from 1 or 2 other people that the draft looks good? Then i'll go ahead and implement it. SilverserenC 16:29, 24 May 2015 (UTC)

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals[edit]

I am writing to complain about the lack of neutrality in this article:

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

I have posted extensive comments on the article's talk page detailing multiple instances of bias, lack of fairness, and lack of proportion in this piece, but so far, this locked page has not been revised.

I will not repeat all the points that I posted here:

Talk:People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

But the main point is this: A wide range of hostile opinions about the organization are quoted, especially in the introduction and the two concluding sections. There are virtually no counterbalancing opinions from outside the organization's leadership, even though it has many, many prominent members and supporters. Also, there is no section currently about the group's rescues of animals from roadside zoos and other sorry facilities where animals are abused incessantly. This is a topic that is far more central to the subject than much of what currently appears on the page. A section that explores the group's substantial impact on changing public opinion and the way that many companies conduct their business would also be extremely appropriate.

Please ensure that this article is brought in line with your standards of neutrality and fairness. (talk) 21:06, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

I think there may be some bias in the article but the main problem is not so much that as the fact that it is badly written and focuses excessively on the controversies surrounding the organization without giving a clear idea of what the organization actually does. This style can give a negative impression, since it leaves the reader feeling that the only thing notable about PETA is the controversy it has generated. Some of that is deserved, and many of the organization's foibles and hypocritical actions ought to be covered. On the other hand we don't need its opinion on Lady Gaga's dress and a million other minutiae. There is also some pointy original research: "Their modus operandi includes buying shares in target companies ..." (not well-sourced), "PETA has been criticized for aiming its message at children." (not sourced, and in context violates WP:SYNTH), "The ads featuring barely clad or naked women have appalled feminist animal rights advocates." (maybe true, but again unsourced OR, and this paragraph then goes into excessive detail about a couple specific controversial events, which is again SYNTH.) The "Positions" section gives undue weight to PETA's positions on shelters and omits mention of many other topics that belong there. (Minor point: it also mistakenly says that the Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty campaign is ongoing, which it isn't.) And generally there is a completely excessive use of quotes instead of secondary sources. So basically it's a total mess and needs an overhaul. To get it to comply with NPOV, the first place to start would be replacing most of the primary sources with reliable secondary sources, and then trying to look at how much weight neutral secondary sources give to various topics. --Sammy1339 (talk) 23:57, 25 May 2015 (UTC)
  • It isn't "locked." It is semi protected. And for good reason; nine admins have semiprotected it because of excess vandalism over the years. --Guy Macon (talk) 01:40, 26 May 2015 (UTC)

Should headings maintain neutrality?[edit]

Folks from this noticeboard may want to add their two cents at Talk:Indigo children. Thanks! Skyerise (talk) 16:29, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

Specifically Talk:Indigo children#"Claimed characteristics". And see related discussions at Talk:Indigo children/Archive 1#POV in first sentence. Sundayclose (talk) 16:41, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict)If the section about claims of attributes by WP:Lunatic charlatans, and the mainstream scientific assessment that there is absolutely no evidence for those attributes (and a more more parsimonious explanation for why parents would want to believe their kids have those attributes), "claimed attributes" is a fairly neutral heading. Ian.thomson (talk) 16:43, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
As mentioned on the article Talk page, "claimed" is entirely appropriate for an article about children alleged to have paranormal powers, per WP:FRINGE guidelines regarding pseudoscience. Creation science, Parapsychology, Water memory, Holocaust denial, and Moon landing conspiracy theories all use the term "claim" dozens of times each. The argument that the word "claimed" is OK in the text but must be kept out of the headings is sadly misinformed. - LuckyLouie (talk) 16:54, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
The section doesn't actually list any paranormal attributes though, just attributes that anyone could have. — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 17:23, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
Attributes that are no more common to purported indigo children than the rest of the population, or which have more parsimonious explanations (like, being raised by a parent who thinks that new-age-woo is more plausible than ADHD). Ian.thomson (talk) 17:31, 27 May 2015 (UTC)