April 8, 2006

War Nerd on analogies of Iraq to the American Civil War:

Gary Brecher writes:

The most common stupid parallel is to the US Civil War, especially the gloom Northern voters felt just before the 1864 election, which is supposed to remind us that there are always quitters who lose their nerve just when victory is about to dawn...

People won't face the fact that guerrilla war is dirty by design. That's the whole idea: making the occupier so sick of you, so disgusted with what you do to him, and what he has to do to you, that he'll just go home. That's what happened to the French in Algeria, the Israelis in South Lebanon, and us in Nam. The idea of guerrilla war is as simple and horrible as eye-gouging: the locals care more about the place than the occupier, so they'll outlast him, out-atrocity him....

You know, that's what keeps shocking me: how these bastards, who are supposedly so American and patriotic, don't think twice about smearing the magnificent soldiers who manned both sides from 1861-1865 with these dirty kid-killing militias in Iraq. It just confirms what I've thought from day one: these people don't care about America, never did.

I grew up studying the Civil War, dreaming of all the great battles, staring at those great paintings of Gettysburg for hours. It was maybe the only war in history where the noble ideal of soldiering actually worked: those men fought like demons on the battlefield but were almost always decently behaved, even polite, with civilians.

Federal commanders who treated locals as the enemy, like Fremont in Missouri, were relieved of their commands, fast. And when Lee marched into Pennsylvania, his soldiers showed the same decency to their fellow Americans, even though the poor bastards were starving. They hit Gettysburg hoping to scrounge up some shoes, but as far as they could, they tried to pay for what they commandeered.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

UPDATED: America dodges a bullet ... for now

The NYT reports:


Effort to Pass Immigration Bill Collapses in Senate
Blame and Uncertainty as Immigration Deal Fails


To which I can only add:


O Lord our God arise,
Scatter her enemies
And make them fall;
Confound their politics,
Frustrate their knavish tricks,
On Thee our hopes we fix,
God save us all!


Mickey Kaus has been all over the politics of immigration lately. He points to an AP report on why the Senate Democrats let the bill die Friday:


In private as well as public, Reid and Sen. Charles Schumer of New York, who heads the party's campaign effort, said they did not want to expose rank-and-file Democrats to votes that would force them to choose between border security and immigrant rights, only to wind up with legislation that would be eviscerated in future negotiations with the House.

Outside the Senate, several Democratic strategists concluded that the best politics was to allow the bill to die, leaving Republicans with a failed initiative in the Senate at a time when the GOP in the House had passed a measure making illegal immigrants subject to felony charges.


Mickey comments:


In other words, there was a penalty to pay with voters for looking soft, and the Dems chickened out of paying it.That's the advantage to the Dems of killing the deal: Not just that it won them voters who didn't like the House bill. It saved them from voters who didn't like Specter's semi-amnesty bill.


In VDARE.com, Donald A. Collins lists Dr. John Tanton's 24 questions about any guest worker program. Here are some of them, reorganized for greater impact:


1. Will spouses and children be able to accompany the guest worker? Just minor children, or adult ones as well?

5. Will any children born in the United States, automatically become U.S. citizens?

8. Will those who marry a U.S. citizen, or have a child while here, be able to stay beyond the six-year period? Would a man who fathers an "illegitimate" child qualify for citizenship on petition by the child when it reaches legal majority?

3. Will the children be eligible to attend school, and if so, at whose expense? In what language(s) will they be educated?

4. How will health care services - including birth control - be provided and paid for?

2. Will any or all of the above be able to demand government services in the language of their choice, per President Clinton's Executive Order 13166? Will the workers be required to have at least a minimal working knowledge of English?

10. If the job for which the worker came to the United States evaporates or otherwise disappears, will workers be required to take a different job, or returned home? If relocation is required, who will pay the expense? Will they be eligible for unemployment? If so, who pays the premium?

12. Will the workers be able to purchase a car, and obtain a U.S. drivers license? If so, will they be required to purchase automobile insurance, and will this be available to them at a cost they can likely afford?

19. If conditions have not improved in the home country after six years, what are the chances that the guest workers will go home? [More]


VDARE will start a fund-raising drive Sunday night, and after the last two weeks of disinformation from the press and the Senate about immigration, all I can say is:


VDARE: We need it now more than ever.


So, please consider giving. (My special account for VDARE donations is here.)

A reader answers my question about why the press has shown so little interest in exposing the blatant corruption by which employers of illegal immigrants got Congressmen to warn off the INS from enforcing the 1986 employer sanctions:


Because at the same time, the civil rights organizations (ACLU, La Raza, etc) were pounding employers for having the unmitigated gall to actually check up on whether employees were legal or not. It gave employers a great out - "Hey we don't want to waste time, money, and effort on checking up on legality and besides when we do we get sued." MSM understands violating some protected minority's rights even if they don't understand national security etc.


Ah, yes, Congressmen on the take in the cause of political correctness... What could be more praiseworthy? No story here, just move along folks...


A reader writes:


We dodged the bullet this time but I wonder how much it matters. As matters stand now, we have massive invasion levels of illegal immigration and stealing of resources every year. The illegals increase every year and more and more jobs are lost to them.


With the current state of affairs, the cheap labor folks get everything they want. The race panderers get everything they want. The elites with a ‘z’ ending to their names get what they want. Why would they want change?


The only loser in the current cabal is the Democrats who have to illegally register the illegals to vote. However, that doesn’t seem to bother them. In my state (Washington) they just give them driver’s licenses and that is all you need to vote. You do have to check a box that says you are a legal citizen so I am sure that stops most of the illegals.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

April 7, 2006

The Senate's immigration "compromise" (i.e., surrender)

Well, that was a disaster, wasn't it?

Here's a question: We all know that the enforcement provisions of the 1986 compromise amnesty-plus-employer-sanctions bill were not carried out because employers of illegal aliens would call up their Congressman and tell him that their campaign contribution would not be arriving unless the Congressman leaned on the INS to call off its dogs. In other words, the law of the land was gutted through pure corruption. So, how come the media never showed much interest in investigating this open scandal?

Have you noticed how nobody has a good logical argument against putting up a fence along the Mexican border? All the responses are purely mindless emotion. Now, even Charles Krauthammer has admitted that and is calling for erecting a fence before any amnesty. In "First a Wall -- Then Amnesty," the neocon writes:


Build a barrier. It is simply ridiculous to say it cannot be done. If one fence won't do it, then build a second 100 yards behind it. And then build a road for patrols in between. Put in cameras. Put in sensors. Put out lots of patrols.

Can't be done? Israel's border fence has been extraordinarily successful in keeping out potential infiltrators who are far more determined than mere immigrants. Nor have very many North Koreans crossed into South Korea in the past 50 years.

Of course it will be ugly. So are the concrete barriers to keep truck bombs from driving into the White House. But sometimes necessity trumps aesthetics. And don't tell me that this is our Berlin Wall. When you build a wall to keep people in, that's a prison. When you build a wall to keep people out, that's an expression of sovereignty. The fence around your house is a perfectly legitimate expression of your desire to control who comes into your house to eat, sleep and use the facilities. It imprisons no one.

Of course, no barrier will be foolproof. But it doesn't have to be. It simply has to reduce the river of illegals to a manageable trickle.


Well said, but a little late.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

More on Jews and immigration

A reader writes:


I wanted to see how diverse Jewish opinion is on the issue of immigration. The General Social Survey asked respondents if immigration improves America. Fifty-two percent of Protestants said yes. The numbers for Catholics and those with no religion were both around 61%. For Jews, it was 90%.


A reader who has a degree from an Israeli university writes:


Re Europe/Arab immigration: It's important to note that the Jewish community in France (and other Western European countries) were opposed for many years to the efforts by right-wing political parties to restrict immigration from the Middle East. Ironically, these Muslim immigrants (and their kids) are responsible for almost all the anti-Jewish incidents in Western Europe.

Similarly, I've always thought that there was something very hypocritical about American-Jewish attitudes on the issue of immigration to Israel which is very restrictive (just recently the Knesset passed a law that doesn't allow Palestinians from the West Bank who married Israeli-Arabs to move to Israel) while celebrating free immigration to America (in general).

Even more intriguing is the way heads of American-Jewish organization collaborated with the Israeli governments in the past to restrict the immigration of JEWS from the old Soviet Union to the U.S. As Sheldon Richman recalls in a pro-immigration study published by Cato called "Let the Soviet Jews Come to America:"


"Until 1989 Soviet Jews, who could leave the Soviet Union only if they had Israeli visas, were free to head for the United States after stopping over in Vienna. They did so under an American refugee program designed to help victims of repression who had no other place to go. Israel hoped to stanch the flow of immigrants elsewhere by providing direct flights from Moscow to Tel Aviv or by having immigrants stop in Bucharest, where they could be better controlled. To limit the Jews' options, Israel persuaded the United States to cap the number of Soviet refugees. The Soviet quota was set at 50,000, about 90 percent of whom have been Jewish. Germany also virtually ended Jewish immigration after being pressured to do so by Israel in early 1991. Before then more than 100 Soviet Jews were registering each day for entry into Germany."


(With the collapse of the Soviet Union all of that became irrelevant).

Similarly, the Israeli government has pressed American-Jewish organization to refrain from creating any outreach programs to help absorb (legal) immigrants from Israel to the United States so as not to "encourage" emigration from Israel (no exact figures are available but probably around 500,000 Israeli immigrants live in the U.S.).


I admire how Israel does what's in its own interest. I wish America would follow Israel's example.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

The Senate's immigration "compromise" (i.e., surrender)

Well, that was a disaster, wasn't it?

Here's a question: We all know that the enforcement provisions of the 1986 compromise amnesty-plus-employer-sanctions bill were not carried out because employers of illegal aliens would call up their Congressman and tell him that their campaign contribution would not be arriving unless the Congressman leaned on the INS to call off its dogs. In other words, the law of the land was gutted through pure corruption. So, how come the media never showed much interest in investigating this open scandal?

Have you noticed how nobody has a good logical argument against putting up a fence along the Mexican border? All the responses are purely mindless emotion. Now, even Charles Krauthammer has admitted that and is calling for erecting a fence before any amnesty. In "First a Wall -- Then Amnesty," the neocon writes:

Build a barrier. It is simply ridiculous to say it cannot be done. If one fence won't do it, then build a second 100 yards behind it. And then build a road for patrols in between. Put in cameras. Put in sensors. Put out lots of patrols.

Can't be done? Israel's border fence has been extraordinarily successful in keeping out potential infiltrators who are far more determined than mere immigrants. Nor have very many North Koreans crossed into South Korea in the past 50 years.

Of course it will be ugly. So are the concrete barriers to keep truck bombs from driving into the White House. But sometimes necessity trumps aesthetics. And don't tell me that this is our Berlin Wall. When you build a wall to keep people in, that's a prison. When you build a wall to keep people out, that's an expression of sovereignty. The fence around your house is a perfectly legitimate expression of your desire to control who comes into your house to eat, sleep and use the facilities. It imprisons no one.

Of course, no barrier will be foolproof. But it doesn't have to be. It simply has to reduce the river of illegals to a manageable trickle.

Well said, but a little late.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

April 6, 2006

A feminist admits the importance of human biodiversity!

A reader writes:


I showed to a feminist friend your blog item quoting Christina Hoff Sommers that "Seventy-four percent of the women passengers survived the April 15, 1912 [sinking of the Titanic], while 80 percent of the men perished. Why? Because the men followed the principle 'women and children first.'"

Rather than admitting the prevalence of men who gave up their lives for women she said, "This may have something to do with women having more body fat. Better to float and survive in the cold with."


So, say not the struggle naught availeth. Here's proof that iSteve.com has gotten a feminist to admit that men and women are different!


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Yglesias responds to my post on how Jewish nostalgia drives Jewish immigration support:

Especially on his own blog, American Prospect staffer Matt Yglesias is admirably frank about how his upper-middle class Jewish identity shapes his political views and those of many similar figures in the media. The comparison to the comic hypocrisy of the "Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain" multitudes of pundits who have denounced Mearsheimer and Walt's paper on the Israel Lobby is wholly to Yglesias's credit.

In an informative response to my recent entry on "Jerusalem Syndrome," he offers five reasons Jews work against immigration restrictions. His list seems pretty accurate to me. Note that the second, third, and fourth reasons are largely nostalgic and based on heavily mythologized views of history.


First off, as a high-income, high-education group, most American Jews derive direct financial benefit from high immigration policies.


Correct. The affluent get cheap servants and the like, while suffering zero competition from illegal immigrants.


Second, as a historical matter, nationalism has been Bad For The Jews.


That's certainly the traditional Jewish attitude, which, as Berkeley historian Yuri Slezkine has pointed out in The Jewish Century, is one reason why so many well-educated secular Jews, especially in Russia, became fervent Marxist-Leninists: nationalism was bad for the Jews, so Communism would abolish nationalism.

But American nationalism has been good for the Jews, which is what the American immigration debate is about, rather than, say, Polish nationalism. (And hasn't Israeli nationalism been good for the Jews? Israel has extremely restrictive policies about who gets to immigrate to Israel and has built fences around Israel to keep people out.)


Third, the general understanding in the American Jewish community is that restrictions on immigration and, in particular, the restrictions the USA imposed in the 1920s are responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Jews in the Holocaust who otherwise would have followed their American cousins out of Europe (this is perhaps empirically mistaken in some respects, but it's certainly the general understanding).


That's definitely the general understanding among Jewish intellectuals today. By laying the blame for the Holocaust on Congress in 1924 (a year that Hitler spent in jail), they can ignore the extraordinary lack of effort American Jewish leaders made during the 12 years of the Roosevelt Administration (which were coterminous with the Third Reich, 1933-1945) to get European Jews admitted as refugees. FDR was the most politically powerful President in American history and American Jews were, on the whole, wildly enthusiastic for FDR. Even though back then Jews comprised a much larger voting bloc, and one particularly well-situated in big electoral vote states to tip elections, they exerted little effective pressure on their hero to do anything for their co-ethnics. Rather than confront this history, it's so much more enjoyable today to blame it all on Congress in 1924 for not having the foresight to realize that a jailbird in Germany was going to perpetrate the worst crime in history two decades later.

As Yglesias notes, the historical case for this myth is shaky. There was very little immigration to the Depression-ridden United States after the stock market collapse in 1929, below the caps set by the 1924 bill, so the number of European Jews who would have immigrated without the 1924 bill, which came into effect largely in 1928, was quite limited -- basically, just a few years worth at the end of the 1920s. Moreover, a big fraction of future Holocaust victims were unable to immigrate because they were locked up within the borders of the Soviet Union.


Fourth -- and relatedly -- the earlier immigration clampdown is understood by American Jews to have been largely motivated by anti-semitism raising suspicions about the motives of present-day restrictionists.


Right. Of course, in reality, the labor movement, in which Jews were highly activate, was a more powerful force on Capitol Hill in 1924 than inchoate anti-Semitism. Particularly important were the calls for immigration restriction by the grand old man of the union movement, Samuel Gompers, who was himself a Jewish immigrant. Once again, it's less disturbing to blame anti-Semites than to confront history honestly.


Fifth, things might be different if most immigrants to America were Arabs or Muslims but when people think "immigrant" they think about Mexicans and Asians not Egyptians; Jews have no particular beef with Mexicans and identify pretty strongly with Asians.


Right. Of course, lots of Muslims are coming into America, although their numbers are currently small compared to other groups.

And, keep in mind, that back when the Europeans decided to take in millions of Muslims, it seemed like a good idea at the time. It has seemed to upper middle-class Americans as if Mexicans will be happy to scrub their toilets forever, but history suggests that won't always be true. There's a wind from the South, as represented by men like Chavez and Morales, blowing up a tide of anti-white Hispanic populist resentment, which we saw early manifestations of in the recent street demonstrations here.

The assumption that the coming anti-white Hispanic movement in America will distinguish between bad gentile whites and good Jewish whites is optimistic, to say the least.


The crucial question for Jews is:


Is it good for the Jews to obsess over "Was it good for the Jews?" Or should they, when thinking about immigration policy, ask, "Will it be good for the Jews?"

*

A reader comments:

Your analysis of the "Jerusalem Syndrome" is interesting, but far too broad regarding Jewish attitudes towards immigration. To paraphrase Walt Whitman, "we contain multitudes!" While some prominent Jewish leaders may believe that unrestricted "open borders" immigration is the way to go, few Jews (as it is with most Americans, generally) prefer that course. Most Jews that I know support legal immigration, but want to do as much as possible (for security reasons, mostly) to prevent illegal immigration. The myth of Ellis Island is not as potent for most Jews as you would describe.

In any event, Jews (and their relationship to the right/left divide) are best understood in the same way that you analyze men and math skills: we have a lot of outliers on the extremes, which makes it seem as though a "majority" of Jews believes virtually anything. Also, in our culture, screaming loudly is an effective way to make your point -- argument is valued. Thus, when you have a bunch of people who are acculturated towards debate, and who have strong opinions on most issues (because you need to have things to argue about in a Jewish home), you get a false impression of what the "majority" of Jews believe.

In the immortal words of someone, "two Jews, four opinions." That may be an understatement.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

April 5, 2006

The Audacious Epigone

For some reason, I completely overlooked the existence of this blog, but it's full of good stuff. For example, the author, known as Crush41, runs an elegant little regression analysis of income inequality by state showing that diversity means inequality. (Granted, that's practically tautologically true, but the conventional wisdom today equates diversity with all other good things, such as equality.)

He measures income inequality by dividing mean income by median income and finds that inequality correlates with the percentage of blacks and Hispanics in a state at the very high r-squared = 58% level.

From the self-interested perspective of the verbal elite that works in the American media, that's not a bug, that's a feature, of illegal immigration. Driving down the wages of Americans who work with their hands (and thus the costs of employing them), while leaving untouched the incomes of Americans who work with the English language, well, what's not to like from their point of view of the average journalist?


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Allan Wall: "Gringo Meddlers Expelled from Mexico:"

Back in 2002 in VDARE.com, our man in Mexico, Allan Wall, wrote about an incident that offers a pointed contrast to last week's massive street demonstrations by illegal immigrants in American cities that so intimidated the United States Senate:

On May 2nd, the Instituto Nacional de MigraciĆ³n (Mexican INS) expelled 18 Americans from Mexico. These expelled Americans had violated the terms of their Mexican visas by getting involved, albeit in a minor fashion, in Mexican politics – a definite no-no for foreigners in Mexico.

The Americans’ offense was to participate in May Day marches in Mexico City and Guadalajara. The ones in Mexico City were college students, visiting with their professor from Washington State. They had joined a group protesting the expropriation of land near Mexico City for a new airport and were waving machetes with the other protestors. They might have gotten away with it, except that some of them were heard on the TV news shouting protest slogans in broken Spanish, which in turn caused Mexican journalists to express outrage.

The INM wasted no time. The offenses were committed on May 1st, and by the evening of May 2nd, the offending gringos were on their way back to the U.S.A., their Mexican visas revoked.

According to Javier Moctezuma, Mexican subsecretary of Population, Migration and Religious Affairs (part of the Interior Department), the Americans were kicked out because “they violated article 43 of the General Population Law......article 43 has been violated and the standard must be applied.”

Article 43 of the General Law of Population (Ley General de PoblaciĆ³n) states that:

“The admission to the country of a foreigner obliges him to strictly comply with the conditions established for him in the immigration permit and the dispositions established by the respective laws.”

As an El Universal article puts it, “as any foreigner, they should not meddle in national affairs.” [More]

That's from the VDARE.com blog, which is also pounding out up-to-the-minute coverage of the Senate debate on immigration. Thanks for this item to James Fulford and his unbelievable memory for old VDARE.com articles.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Immigration: A Modest Proposal

- Don't pass a law now. There's no consensus in Congress and any kind of compromise that might emerge from conference would likely be a monstrosity of pieces that don't work together. (The most probably result would be the Cheap Labor Lobby would get what they wanted in terms of more immigration while succeeding in debilitating enforcement provisions, so we get 1986 all over again).

- Instead, fight the November 2006 election over immigration. Then, in 2007, the winners of the election get to do whatever they got a mandate to do.

Now, that's representative government!

Unfortunately, that's not what we have in America today, due to the hyper-sophistication of gerrymandering, so this will never ever happen. Few members of the House want to risk their seats on a single issue, even one with the overwhelming long-term importance of immigration. Today, House districts are crafted so precisely that, unless his mistress winds up dead, as unluckily happened to former Rep. Gary Condit, or he gets carried away taking bribes, as happened to former Rep. Duke Cunningham, a member of the House has a good chance of occupying his seat through retirement. The idea of asking voters to make their decision based on a single crucial issue is anathema to our ruling class.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

El Presidente waves the flag


This is a still from a 5 minute ad created by the Bush Campaign in 2004.

The long history of lucrative business, political, and social connections between the Bush dynasty and Mexico's corrupt power elite over the last 45 years has gotten little attention. I wrote about them in 2001 and, at more length, in 2004.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

"Jerusalem Syndrome"

Every year, a number of tourists visiting Jerusalem go bonkers, declaring themselves to be the messiah or suffering other psychotic episodes. Less well known, but more important, is the deranging effect that the Holy Land has on the rest of the world, day in and day out.

The impact of Holy Land-Related Derangement Syndrome on the Muslim world is well-known, but here are four examples of Jerusalem Syndrome playing out in America.

1. Haaretz reports:


New Christian pro-Israel lobby aims to be stronger than AIPAC
By Shlomo Shamir

NEW YORK - Televangelist John Hagee told Jewish community leaders over the weekend that the 40 million evangelical Christians in the United States support Israel and that he plans to utilize this power to help Israel by launching a Christian pro-Israel lobby.

The lobby is slated to launch in July, during a Washington conference in which hundreds of American evangelicals are slated to participate, Hagee said at a meeting of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, which represents 52 national Jewish groups. He also discussed the lobby with Israel's consul general in New York, Aryeh Mekel.

Hagee said his group would be a Christian - and more powerful - version of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), a large pro-Israel lobby, and would target senators and congressmen on Capitol Hill. A quarter of congressmen are evangelicals, and many American legislators represent regions that include a large evangelical population, he said.

Hagee - the founder and senior pastor of the evangelical Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas, that claims an active membership of more than 18,000 - said the lobby's activities would be a "political earthquake."


To be more powerful than AIPAC would be powerful indeed. I once interviewed spokesmen for various lobbies -- the Arab, Muslim, Armenian, and Turkish -- and they all said that they fashion themselves on the lines pioneered by AIPAC, that AIPAC was their professional role model as the 800 pound gorilla of foreign lobbies, and they all dreamed of someday having as much clout as AIPAC. Exactly how much need there is for a second AIPAC is less than crystal clear, since the first one seems to be doing fine. As Dana Milbank wrote in the Washington Post last year:


How much clout does AIPAC have?

Well, consider that during the pro-Israel lobby's annual conference yesterday, a fleet of police cars, sirens wailing, blocked intersections and formed a motorcade to escort buses carrying its conventioneers -- to lunch.

The annual meeting of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee has long produced a massive show of bipartisan pandering, as lawmakers praise the well-financed and well-connected group. But this has been a rough year for AIPAC -- it has dismissed its policy director and another employee while the FBI examines whether they passed classified U.S. information to Israel -- and the organization is eager to show how big it is...

Another fact sheet announced that this is the "largest ever" conference, with its 5,000 participants attending "the largest annual seated dinner in Washington" joined by "more members of Congress than almost any other event, except for a joint session of Congress or a State of the Union address." The group added that its membership "has nearly doubled" over four years to 100,000 and that the National Journal calls it "one of the top four most effective lobbying organizations."


The Rev. Hagee didn't mention whether his organization would facilitate treasonous espionage against the United States, like AIPAC did in the Larry Franklin affair.

Of course, a big part of what drives the Christian fundamentalists'' obsession with Israel is that wacky Left Behind eschatology that believes that the fulfillment of Likud's plans will set off the Rapture. Granted, it will be tough toast for the Christ-rejecting Jews when Israeli dominance triggers the Apocalypse, but until then, the Book of Revelation-worshippers are all for Israel kicking ass.

In the world of politics, can something be too stupid to be true? I guess not.

2. But sometimes the Jerusalem Syndrome doesn't even have to have anything to do with actual Jews. If you are as deranged as appears to be Utah Congressman Chris Cannon, President Bush's point man in the House on pushing through Open Borders, well, even Mexicans qualify as the Lost Tribes of Israel. The Denver Post reports:


Utah is the most Republican state in the country. But the state's more than 95,000 undocumented immigrants can legally drive with a "driving privilege card" created last year. They can go to any public university or community college and pay in-state tuition.

Many of the state's otherwise conservative lawmakers are major players nationally in pushing for a more open immigration policy. In 2003, no less a conservative stalwart than Sen. Orrin Hatch sponsored the Dream Act, a bill that would have removed federal penalties for states that want to give illegal immigrants a college tuition break...

Political observers seeking to explain the state's unusual embrace of immigrants point to a variety of factors, many involving the state's dominant faith.

Over the past several decades, the Mormon Church has sent thousands of Utahns to Latin America on two-year missions to preach and proselytize, creating strong links between the region and people who went on to become some of the state's top policymakers. Utah Republican Rep. Chris Cannon went on a mission in Guatemala in the 1970s...

But one of the strongest influences, experts say, is embedded in the central doctrine of the Mormon faith, a force with enormous influence over both politics and society here. The Book of Mormon teaches that a lost tribe of Israelites known as the Lamanites landed on the American continent in 600 B.C. and they are the forefathers of the native peoples of Mexico and Central and South America.

Many Mormons see the tens of thousands of Latin American immigrants who have arrived in the seat of the church as guided by the hand of God in order to be converted, critical players in an unfolding religious tale of biblical proportions.

"Mormons have the Book of Mormon, and the Latin American, aboriginal ancestry is relevant to their views. Those notions, if sometimes misunderstood, are at least widely held," said Cannon, a four-term congressman and member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

"The Mormon Church has taken a position that is pretty clear. They are a proselytizing church, and they view the people coming to Utah as a great group of people to convert," Cannon said.

That faith has helped fire actions on the issue from Salt Lake to Washington. Cannon is in many ways the mirror image of Colorado's Tom Tancredo, the Littleton Republican who has crusaded for a federal immigration crackdown. The Utah lawmaker was the architect in 2003 of AgJobs, an unsuccessful bill in Congress that would have legalized 500,000 farm workers nationwide.


It's hard to tell from this if Rep. Cannon really believes Joseph's Smith's sci-fi anthropology, or whether he's just cynically playing coy to persuade Mormons to back the agenda of the Low Wages Lobby.

3. Meanwhile, in the real Holy Land, they recently had an election, as you might have heard if you didn't spend last week in a cave. Israeli elections seem to get more coverage in the American national press than any American state election not involving Arnold Schwarzenegger.

If I was an Israeli citizen, I would have voted for the winning Kadima Party organized by Ariel Sharon before his collapse, but I'm not, so I don't spend a lot of time thinking about Israeli politics. It's a country with a population only two-thirds of Los Angeles County's, and it's just not that important.

It's safe to say that in recent years, Sharon arrived at sensible conclusions such as the need for a border fence to keep out terrorists, and for evacuation of the more useless Israeli settlements on Palestinian territory. The defeat of Likud by the Israeli voters was a real thumb in the eye to the American neocons, and it couldn't have happened to a nicer set.

Here, however, is one interesting aspect to the election that hasn't gotten much coverage:

American traitor Jonathan Pollard's old handler is a new political power in Israel's Knesset. Dave in Boca, who has a lot of inside sources on this kind of thing, reports:


The Pensioners' Party has come out of nowhere to win seven seats to the Knesset under the leadership of Rafi Eitan, a well-known figure in Israel's turbulent history, who at 79 years old is playing his third act in a lifetime full of skullduggery.

Eitan was the mastermind of the kidnapping of Adolph Eichmann from Argentina, resulting in that Nazi war criminal's trial and execution for war crimes during the Second World War.

Then, in a less glorious episode, Eitan set up Jonathon Pollard as a spy who stole US secrets which informed observers say Israel subsequently traded to the USSR for spy info on its enemies in the Middle East. This was the reason that recently-deceased Caspar Weinberger reportedly gave for ordering Pollard to be kept in a maximum-security facility for life with no hope of parole or early release.

Reports that Rafi Eitan has a document that Israel never handed over to the Americans after Pollard's conviction is not likely to lead to Pollard's release, say these sources. The case for keeping Pollard in prison lies not only on his extensive spying for Israel, but also on the allegations that

Pollard's information led to revealing the identity of American spies operating in the Soviet Union.

There are reports that other information that the Israelis handed the USSR was also harmful to American foreign policy interests and that the harm done has led to the US's tough stance on Pollard's imprisonment.


Do you think anybody ever mentioned any of this to the Rev. Hagee's congregation?

4. Speaking of bizarre religious obsessions, the "debate" over immigration has been notable for the lack of debate as the arguments put forward by immigration restrictionists are ignored and their proponents demonized as "angry" "rabble-rousing" "haters.". The pro-illegal immigration supporters, on the other hand, are driven largely by a wholly emotional irrationality.

From whence does this hatred of facts and logic about immigration spring? When reading economist Paul Krugman's 3/27 NYT column "North of the Board," an admirable mea culpa on his part for all the hatred he has spewed at immigration restrictionists over the years, one of the prime answers became clear. Krugman wrote:


"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free," wrote Emma Lazarus, in a poem that still puts a lump in my throat. I'm proud of America's immigrant history, and grateful that the door was open when my grandparents fled Russia.

In other words, I'm instinctively, emotionally pro-immigration. But a review of serious, nonpartisan research reveals some uncomfortable facts about the economics of modern immigration, and immigration from Mexico in particular. If people like me are going to respond effectively to anti-immigrant demagogues, we have to acknowledge those facts.

First, the net benefits to the U.S. economy from immigration, aside from the large gains to the immigrants themselves, are small.... Second, while immigration may have raised overall income slightly, many of the worst-off native-born Americans are hurt by immigration — especially immigration from Mexico.


From my experience of dealing with Krugman via email, he's a nasty son-of-a-gun, but I have to compliment him on finally developing the intellectual honesty to admit that his overwhelming urge to vomit abuse at immigration restrictionists has little basis in facts.

So, where, does this mindless passion that has been so prevalent in the media over the last week originate?

To be frank, much of what we see in the press appear to be examples of Jewish-American ancestor worship, a bizarre religious urge to make Ellis Island into a sacred site. Other groups, such as the Italian and Irish, share this to some extent, but Jews with their vast talent at nostalgic myth-making seem much more taken in by their own concoction than are Catholic ethnics, who are, sensibly, more focused on the future than the past. On the right, the main cheerleaders among journalists for massive immigration have been Jewish neocons like William Kristol, John Podhoretz, Tamar Jacoby, Michael Barone, and James Taranto.

Is unchecked immigration good for the Jews? Of course not. It will bring in more anti-Semites and terrorists, like Egyptian immigrant Hesham Mohamed Hadayet, who murdered two Jews at the Israeli El Al Airline counter of LAX on the July 4, 2002. Nor does it make sense for America to hold open the gates to the whole world just in case anything happened, God forbid, to Israel. If it did, Israeli Jews would immediately get a special deal as refugees, not as ordinary immigrants, like Cubans did. Granted, Jews suffer less from economic competition with illegal immigrants than any other ethnic group due to their high average IQs and educational levels, but, rationally, security concerns should be high on their priority list.

No, the ferocious resistance of so many Jews in the media to thinking sensibly about immigration (there are, of course, numerous honorable exceptions such as Robert Samuelson, Dan Stein, and Steven Steinlight) is rooted in nostalgia.

Now, nostalgia is a pleasant luxury, but can Jews, even in America, really afford to give up thinking "Is it good for the Jews?" in favor of "Was it good for the Jews?"

UPDATE: 5. Hasidic riot last night in Brooklyn: WNBC reports:


Claiming police had mistreated a 75-year-old man after a routine traffic stop, hundreds of residents stormed the streets and set fires as officers in riot gear fanned out to clear the crowd.


Images: Hasidim Protest Man's Arrest


Police denied mistreating the man, Arthur Schick, after he was pulled over Tuesday night in the Borough Park section of Brooklyn for talking on his cell phone while driving. Police said he resisted the officers during the stop, which occurred around 6:30 p.m., and was arrested with two other people who meddled in the incident.

Protesters set small fires and blocked streets in the Orthodox Jewish neighborhood while Schick's car sat parked in front of the bakery bearing his family's name.

Dozens of young Orthodox Jews in traditional black suits and hats gathered on street corners in the neighborhood, which sees very little crime. Charred garbage pockmarked the streets.

Police officers herded away onlookers, who yelled back angrily. The crowd had mostly dispersed by late Tuesday night.


Reader Comments:


As a recently apostate/quit/on-hiatus evangelical Christian, the fate of the Jews in general and Israeli ones in particular, during a Left Behind-style Rapture often takes one of these forms:

1) They are all genetically exempt from judgement through Yahweh's original covenant with their ancestors.

2) A whole bunch of them will become Christians/Messianic or "Completed" Jews as in the greatest hopes of the Jews for Jesus ministry. This is sometimes caused by a world-wide wave of anti-Jewish persecution.

3) Most of them in Israel are done for though 144,000, (probably all men as specified in the Book of Revelation) are delivered from whatever tribulation the anti-Christ doles out on Israel.

That advantage from Hagee's perspective of his proposed Evangelicals for Israel group is more cash and an Israel lobby that is overtly pro-Christian. I've never looked into it, but I'd imagine AIPAC is kind of uneasy about Christians who may be obsessed with converting Jews.

*


Steve, some of us have been working for years to get Chris Cannon out of office.

Most of us who have been doing that believe in Joseph Smith's "sci-fi anthropology". Not surprising--Cannon's district is over 80% Mormon.

Your question presents two answers that are not mutually exclusive: having talked to Cannon several times, I believe he both accepts Mormon theology AND cynically applies it to justify his pro-amnesty position.

Some of us think his justification is both politically and theologically wrong. We oppose amnesties, unlimited immigration generally, illegal immigration specifically, etc etc. In other words, sir, there are (or were) a whole lot of Mormons on YOUR side of the issue.

Republican Mormons in Utah who oppose amnesty have already been betrayed by our party and our Congresscritters. It isn't any fun to also be stabbed in the back and insulted by someone we thought was an ally.

*


I'm an evangelical Christian myself, but in the old-fashioned sense--one who believes that God still expects us to spread the good news among the nations. The oddest thing about the fiercely pro-Israel evangelical Christians is their treatment of Jews as the one group not in need of conversion to be saved. I hope that this is due to a certain theological reading of Revelation, leading them to believe that the Jews will be saved by God's grace somehow in the end. I'm not a biblical scholar myself, but there seems to be disagreement among theologians on this point.

But to be fair to the evangelicals who strongly support the secular state of Israel, I think there is more to it than "end times" tunnel vision. I've heard a number of sermons in evangelical churches on the Christian duty to look after the welfare of the Jews in general, in part because of past persecution. Many evangelical churches try to model themselves after the 1st century church, which was strongly Jewish in tradition. I suspect that feeling an emotional tie to the Jews of today is like reaching back into the past for them. I see the sin of pride lurking, though, in believing that the God of the Old Testament, the deliverer of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, David, etc. needs Americans to protect his people above all others.

*

Most of my relatives are Mormon and are instinctively pro-immigration. Hispanics are among those most inclined to convert to Mormonism, so Mormons have positive feelings about them. Many Mormons in the mountain states are farmers who enjoy the cheap labor too. Mormons like to see the these new little congregations of Hispanic Mormons spreading rapidly through their neighborhoods. Eveidently, the American Catholic Church has a similar attitude: it favors open borders in order to fill the pews. But Mormons' immigration feelings are not that difficult to change. All I have to do is share a few facts from VDARE, and their natural conservatism does the rest. Just tell them they join the church just as fast in Mexico. All I have to do with my Dad, for example, is to remind him how 90% of the inmates housed at the county jail where he works are Mexican.

*


You underrate the evangelicals, I think. An evangelical pro-Israel lobby needn't be predicated on radical eschatology...

What this actually is, is an evangelical anti-Islamic lobby. Can't call it that, of course - too "intolerant", and folks would far rather be "for" something than "against" something else. So...let's get together and be "for" whatever Moslems hate most - which is the state of Israel.


As a bonus, philo-semitism is a public contradiction of left-wing stereotypes about evangelicals, and critics are hard-pressed to come up with arguments they can make in public against...supporting Jews. Let the liberals find out what it's like to be aligned against a minority immune to criticism.

I think it's brilliant, personally.

*


Lots of readers have written in to say they are sure that Michael Barone is Catholic by upbringing. I haven't been able to find anything on Google on the question, one way or another. Can you? Remember, being Italian is not absolute proof of Catholicism.

NYC mayor Fiorello LaGuardia, for example, was an Episcopalian with an Italian father and Jewish mother. No wonder he was such a political powerhouse in NYC!

Here is Barone discussing his ancestors and schooling in detail. He mentions his Irish Catholic grandmother, but not the religion of his Sicilian ancestors. He attended a public school and elite (i.e., non-parochial) private schools.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

The new issue of The American Conservative is semi-online:

Subscribe here.

April 10, 2006 Issue



Iran: The Logic of Deterrence
By Christopher Layne
Tehran’s quest for nuclear weapons is a rational response to a real threat, which makes diplomacy a more prudent option than regime change.



Minding Our Manners
By Theodore Dalrymple
Militant egalitarians make rudeness a virtue.


What Victory Lost

By Wayne Merry
After three years, it’s more clear than ever that we would have been better off not to have invaded Iraq.

Red-Ink Rebellion
By W. James Antle III
House conservatives mount a challenge to Republican spending practices.

How to Handle Hamas
By Leon Hadar
Hamas’s voters did not reject the peace process.

Madness of Crowds
By Glenn Greenwald
Loyalty to Bush is the criterion for conservatism.

Remember Kosovo?
By Doug Bandow
The Kosovo War was no nation-building success.



Lighting Up the Screen
By Steve Sailer
Aaron Eckhart in “Thank You for Smoking”

California Dreamin’
By Roger D. McGrath
Coast of Dreams: California on the Edge, 1990-2003 by Kevin Starr

The American Conservative

An Empire Built of Paper
By Llewellyn H. Rockwell Jr.
Empire of Debt: The Rise of an Epic Financial Crisis
by William Bonner and Addison Wiggin

Counterfeit Conservative
By Doug Bandow
Impostor: How George W. Bush Bankrupted America and Betrayed the Reagan Legacy
by Bruce Bartlett



Are We Up to the Empire Game?
By Patrick J. Buchanan
Bush discredits Arab democracy.

Ugly Americans on the March
By Taki
Why I cheered for Finland



Fourteen Days: National Review Purges Buckley; Do the Troops Support the Troops?; Free Speech Hits Its Limit in Austria

Deep Background: Suicide Bomber University; Abandoning Abbas; Iran Bombs the Dollar


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

April 4, 2006

A compromise on immigration is a surrender on immigration

Randall Parker at Parapundit responds to a compromise amnesty plus enforcement plan put forward by Senators Mel Martinez and Chuck Hagel:

The US Congress has had decades of opportunities to show that it will seriously enforce immigration laws and has failed to do so. The Congress has passed bills that purported to toughen immigration law enforcement and then proceeded to gut enforcement by pressuring agencies of the US government to hold back from doing vigorous enforcement. Any time the employer fines or round-ups of illegals began to scale up to a level that would make a difference Congressional committees applied pressure to gut the enforcement initiatives.

In a nutshell: Congress can't be trusted. Unless Congress does enforcement first any supposed compromise that purports to combine an amnesty with enforcement will inevitably become an amnesty only. When Senators like Martinzez and Hagel try to tell us differently they are just flat out lying. I feel insulted by the brazenness of their lying.

We were cheated in 1986: Congress passed a law giving amnesty to current illegals and imposing employer sanctions to eliminate the incentive for new illegals to enter the country, but, as Randall notes, the sanctions were gutted by Congressmen calling the INS and warning them off.

The cheap labor lobby wants to do it all over again: legalize the current illegals and then invite in another ten million new illegals. Well, fool me once, shame on on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

The absolute essential first step to dealing with illegal immigration is to stop letting in any more. Any discussion of any kind of amnesty for current illegals must be off the table until a large and permanent reduction in new illegal entry is evident.

And the only way to ensure the reduction is permanent is to build a fence. Only a fence is forever. Trying to cut back illegal entries with employer sanctions alone is just inviting Congressmen to gut the sanctions as soon as they get their amnesty.

And here is John O'Sullivan saying the same thing more elegantly.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Math is racist

Here's an informative article from the Hampton Roads Pilot about how the federal Justice Dept. is forcing the city of Virginia Beach to change its qualifications for entering the police academy because, you'll be shocked to learn, whites do better than Hispanics and blacks on the math test:

The city has reached a settlement with the U.S. Justice Department to resolve allegations that it discriminated against black and Hispanic police recruits. Under a consent decree filed Monday in federal court in Norfolk, the city will change the way it scores the police entrance exam.

The Justice Department had complained that the math portion of the exam had an adverse effect on minority applicants and unfairly excluded them from being hired. The city will offer to let 124 black and Hispanic former applicants resume the hiring process. Those recruits failed the math test between 2002 and 2005 but would have passed under the new standards. The city also will create a $160,000 fund to compensate those applicants.

In the 27-page settlement, the Justice Department states that the city did not intentionally discriminate against blacks and Hispanics...

After an 18-month investigation, the Justice Department found that the police force did not reflect the diversity of the city’s population because of how the math test was graded...

From 2002 to mid-2005, about 85 percent of white applicants passed the math exam, compared with 59 percent of blacks and 66 percent of Hispanics... Under the new standard, an applicant must score at least 70 percent on the reading and grammar parts of the test and score an average of at least 60 percent on all three parts of the exam.

The city will give 124 applicants a chance to resume participation in the hiring process. Of that number, the city has committed to hiring at least 15 – three Hispanics and 12 blacks – who complete the application process

In other words, the Justice Dept. is forcing the local police department to impose an explicit racial quota on itself. Isn't that, technically, a violation of the 2003 Grutter decision of the Supreme Court?

Now, it's widely believed that the existence of racial quotas stems from a nefarious perversion of the sainted 1964 Civil Rights Act, but the truth is that institutions end up imposing hiring quotas upon themselves to avoid these kind of brouhahas, which grow directly out of the 1964 Act itself. As long as the federal government is mandated to ignore the IQ difference between the races, you will end up with this kind of imposition of quotas.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Anti-Sailerism at FireDogLake

Anti-Sailerism's characteristic mode is to quote from me and then, rather than muster any facts or logic to dispute the truth of what I've just said, point and sputter, "Isn't that awful! He must be a horrible person to say such a thing." There's a classic example over at FireDogLake.com, where "Armando" appears to have gone out of his way to find particularly unobjectionable quotes from me, such as:


"Personally, I’ve long wanted more black quarterbacks in the NFL. Living in Southern California, I don’t have a team to root for. So I just watch the wrap-up shows to see amazing plays. And black quarterbacks provide more of them than whites, because they are generally faster and shiftier runners.. . .

Why do black quarterbacks tend to be better runners than white quarterbacks? For the same reasons that blacks tend to be better runners than whites in all sports. Perhaps the single most self-evident fact about American spectator sports is that blacks, on average, are faster than whites. No human being not of West African descent ever ran 100 meters in less than 10 seconds until this spring, when Patrick Johnson, finally broke that barrier, 35 years after the first Sub-Saharan African"


Another awful thing I wrote, according to FireDogLake, was:


Our political discourse is dominated not by a concern for the needs of the American people as a whole, but by the self-interest and unexamined assumptions of the verbally facile.


But, you see, my sounding well-informed, reasonable, and fair-minded is all just part of my sinister plot!

This denunciation would all be utterly boring except for the appearance in the Comments section of good old "Tacitus" -- a.k.a., Josh Trevino, the co-founder of the Republican group blog RedState and close friend of the disgraced Ben Domench -- to announce that he totally agrees that I'm a horrible person and has been denouncing me as an "evilcon" for years.

So, you see, I'm a unifier! I've brought together the Chimpy McHitlerBushton-haters at FireDogLake and Mr. RedState, Josh Trevino.

UPDATE: I was going to quote you what Ben's Buddy had to say about me, but the second time I went back, all that was left of his comment was:


EDITED BY SITE OWNER

Trevino you lost your ability to comment here the other night when you showed up and started insulting other commenters... Now you and your bigot bretheren [sic] can just get out of here, this isn’t LGF.


Oh, well, I guess there is just a little too much hatred sloshing around within the anti-Sailerists for even me to foster amity amongst them.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Did the invention of antibiotics liberate women from mandatory housewifery? Continued.

-- In response to an earlier item, John Derbyshire emails:

I am sure you are right. The parental terror of childhood infections still hung in the air during my own childhood (ca. 1950). I can still rattle off their names: diphtheria, scarlet fever, measles, German measles, whooping cough, mumps, & of course polio. Standards of household cleanliness in the English working class of that time were much higher than in the current American middle class. There was fierce gossip among my mother & her peers about so-and-so "not keeping a clean house." The adjective "houseproud" was in common use. It induced pathologies. The woman next door to us, whose son was my playmate, kept her front parlor so spotless, it was never allowed to be used. Peter & I sneaked in there once, but it was a great adventure. I mainly remember the gleaming brasses & smell of furniture polish. I never learned to swim as a child, & still can't swim well, because of the fear of catching polio at the public pools. In hospitals, where I spent considerable time as a child (& where my mother worked), everything was scrubbed down twice a day with carbolic (?) soap. The wards reeked of disinfectant and starch. Instruments were wheeled around in little trays of boiling water. There was a sort of fanaticism about it all--but probably well justified.

Another reader writes:

Along similar lines, I have come up with the idea that the success of the Great Migration of blacks from the South to the North was possible due to the concurrent discovery of vitamin D and the institution of the practice of food irradiation, which began in 1927. Were it not for food irradiation, black families would not have been able to raise healthy children in dark northern cities, and the population would not have been sustainable.

CBS news reports today in "Rickets Make a Comeback" that there may be need for more fortification with Vitamin D:

Government blood tests suggest a surprising number of Americans do not get currently recommended amounts, especially those with dark-pigmented skin that does not produce as much of the vitamin from sunlight.

Half of black women of childbearing age lack enough vitamin D in their blood during the winter and 30 percent in the summer, according to studies from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That compares with 11 percent of white women in the winter and 2 percent in the summer. Levels among Hispanics fall in between.

The introduction of sulfas in in the 1930s and penicillin in 1944 also helped the Great Migration, which is often dated to the introduction of a mechanized cotton reaper in 1943. Before them, and, perhaps more importantly, before the introduction of modern sanitation, the life expectancy of blacks in northern cities was poor. As I wrote in VDARE in 2003:

Brandeis historian David Hackett Fischer pointed out in his famous Albion's Seed that these racial differences had an enormous impact on the history of America. He notes that the cold climate of colonial Massachusetts

"proved to be exceptionally dangerous to immigrants from tropical Africa, who suffered severely from pulmonary infections in New England winters. Black death rates in colonial Massachusetts were twice as high as whites' - a pattern very different from Virginia where mortality rates for the two races were not so far apart, and still more different from South Carolina where white death rates were higher than those of blacks. So high was mortality among African immigrants in New England that race slavery was not viable on a large scale, despite many attempts to introduce it. Slavery was not impossible in this region, but the human and material costs were higher than many wished to pay. A labor system which was fundamentally hostile to the Puritan ethos of New England was kept at bay partly by the climate."

Not surprisingly, in the 19th Century, Massachusetts became the home of abolitionism. South Carolina became the home of secession.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

"The right to decide who lives amongst them

is one of the most profound rights of any nation of citizens."

Martin Kelly


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

Why crime has fallen sharply in New York City

Somehow, I don't think that in their debates over why crime has fallen so sharply in New York City, Malcolm Gladwell and Steven D. Levitt are going to get around to mentioning this new article in the New York Times, "New York City Losing Blacks, Census Shows:"

"Reversing a tide from the South who altered the complexion of the city earlier in the 20th century, the number of American-born blacks leaving the city has exceeded the number arriving since at least the late 1970's."

Most of the statistics in the article understate the relevant size of the outflow of African Americans because they talk about total blacks, not African Americans. Until recently, the outflow of high crime rate African-Americans from New York City was balanced off by an influx of lower crime rate black immigrants from Africa and the Caribbean.

In 1997, according to a liberal advocacy group, the National Center on Institutions and Alternatives, non-Hispanic blacks in New York state were imprisoned 12.8 times as often per capita as non-Hispanic whites.

From this, you can see one reason why the media elite in New York City is so rabidly pro-immigration. When foreign blacks and Mexicans squeeze African-Americans out of New York City, in what I call "economic ethnic cleansing," the NYC crime rate falls. The chance that David Brooks is going to get mugged goes down. However, these African-Americans aren't, as New York City pundits often seem to assume, being deported, they are just moving to fly-over country and bringing their problems with them.

Newhouse News reporter Jonathan Tilove has pointed out another reason that probably contributed to the exceptional crime decline in NYC, the striking shortage of black men: "There are 36 percent more black women than men in New York City." Some of the reasons are obvious: imprisonment, the huge number of murders during the crack years, AIDS, and the military. But there has also been some sex-selective immigration, as parents move to keep their sons off the streets. The article quotes a black lady from NYC who moved to a small town in North Carolina:

"I was divorced and moved here with my 11-year-old — I was afraid of the crime, and black boys don't fare too well in New York."

All this migration is relevant to the Levitt-Donohue theory that legalizing abortion cut crime because ever since I pointed out in my 1999 debate in Slate.com with Steven D. Levitt that his theory was based on insufficiently precise age groups (under 25 and over 25), and that when you look at age groups (e.g., 14-17) sufficiently precise enough to register the impact of abortion, then what you instantly see is that at the national level, the opposite of what they had predicted actually had happened. All Levitt could do was claim that his state-level data vindicated his theory. I didn't have the econometric skills to evaluate Levitt's claim, but when Boston Fed economists Christopher Foote and Christopher Goetz worked through Levitt-Donohue's state level analysis in 2005, they found two fatal mistakes in it that wiped out the whole effect.

In response, Levitt and Donohue pulled out a whole new database of state-level abortion data and announced that this vindicated them. At the AEI conference on the topic last week, Levitt's co-author John J. Donohue indignantly kept saying that my national-level graphs showing the exact opposite happened didn't disprove his theory. Which is true, but I never claimed that it disproved it, just that journalists should have done some simple reality checks rather than accept Donohue and Levitt's claim on faith. Donohue made a hilarious effort to hand the burden of proof off to the skeptics, which is exactly where it does not belong. You can watch the video here.

This NYT article, however, illustrates many of the dangers of the Donohue-Levitt methodology of looking at state abortion rates and state crime rates with a lag of approximately two decades between them.

The obvious problem is that people move. If movement was just random, well, that wouldn't be a problem for the Donohue-Levitt theory because it would just reduce the effect size in their statistical analysis. But if interstate migration was not neutral to perceptions of local differences in crime rates and/or morality (which can correlate with the abortion rate), the whole point of their state-level analysis could be in big trouble.

And, of course, in the real world, crime and morality are highly important drivers of migration. People with kids move out of big cities, in part to escape crime and big city immorality, while well-educated young people flock to big cities with liberal morals to meet other young singles with liberal morals. Immigrants from cultures with close-knit extended family morals, making them partly immune to the temptations of the street, move to big cities and help drive socially laxer African-Americans out of town. Over the decades, these processes, which accelerated over the last few decades, have had an enormous cumulative effect on who lives where.

These biases thus render the Donohue-Levitt state-level analysis unreliable.


My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer