I have read with interest the articles regarding the Century Freeway project, and the failure to achieve affirmative-action goals there. The Dec. 30 story includes the following quote from Judge Harry Pregerson, apparently the architect of the affirmative-action aspects of the project. "Here you have a good program set up on paper and you presumably have good people to execute the program. . . . If you're not getting the rate of success that you'd like to achieve, what does this indicate? That we've got some really deep-seated problems in our society."
Judge Pregerson appears to believe that racial and sexual prejudice are the primary deterrents to success for minorities and women, and that the simple application of affirmative-action programs should turn failure to success. I recommend an Economics 1 course for the judge in order that he have at least some understanding of the many, many factors affecting the economic success or failure of individuals in a competitive market-driven economy.
I agree with the judge that we have some "deep-seated problems." In my opinion, one of them is the politically motivated appointment of deficiently educated and experienced lawyers to powerful lifetime judgeships.