February 7, 2006

Your base JPod model does not come with the self-awareness module

A reader points out that on NRO's The Corner today, John Podhoretz, of all people, accused his immigration restrictionist opponents of lacking decorum, civility, and thoughtfulness.

This week's Conservative Political Action Conference will have two panels on immigration (one of them including yours truly), plus Rep. Tom Tancredo and Sen. John Cornyn giving (separate) speeches on the topic. Tamar Jacoby got booed last year.

I tell you, there's nothing like the open-mindedness in the debate over immigration. What decorum! What civility! What thoughtful discourse! How proud you restrictionists must be!

My point was not that booing her was a good thing; I get along with her fine, despite her being all wet on immigration. But the intensity of feeling on this is largely a function of the contempt with which the party establishment treats the grassroots: the president calling the Minutemen "vigilantes," Chris Cannon and Darrell Issa saying restrictionists don't belong in the Republican Party, and the shameful conduct of the Wall Street Journal's editorial page. If mass-immigration supporters are going to dish it out, they'd better be ready to take it.

...when the subject was immigration, Mark, I assure you that I wasn't dishing anything out at the time. I said merely what I feel deeply -- which is that, as a Jew, I have great difficulty supporting a blanket policy of immigration restriction because of what happened to the Jewish people after 1924 and the unwillingness of the United States to take Jews in. That didn't seem to me to be deserving of boos. But I got 'em, and I took 'em.

JPod is leaving out a crucial point: he was booed by a Jewish audience for his unpatriotic ethnocentric self-absorption. An iSteve reader attended the discussion that Pod Person 2.0 is referring to:

I attended a forum in Skokie outside of Chicago sponsored by the Jewish Policy Center (JPC) — the think tank offshoot of the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC). The forum consisted of a moderator – Michael Medved, and four presenters, including John Podhoretz and David Horowitz.

I would say about 300 people showed up for the event, a lot considering it was a nice afternoon and both the Bears and Sox were playing....

Another questioner from the audience asked the panel about our immigration problems... But Podhoretz decided he wanted to answer this question, and here is where the fireworks began. He started by saying something along the lines of, “Well, first I feel when it comes to any issue of immigration, I have to rely on my Jewish experience. And I think back on the 1924 immigration restrictionist law which excluded so many Jews...”

Here he was interrupted and cut off by boos and jeers from the audience.

He was visibly taken aback by this reaction. He asked, “Why are you booing me?” Clearly shocked. Then he thought he had it figured out and responded by basically, “Oh, well I guess now this is an issue of Mexicans versus Jews...” And this produced even more jeers and boos from the audience, since he was clearly implying the audience was racist.

Damn Sailerites following him wherever he goes.

Let me emphasize again that a crowd of Jewish Republicans lustily rejected Podhoretz's philosophy of putting the welfare of Jews ahead of the welfare of Americans.

As this example makes clear, John Podhoretz himself is the Jewish Al Sharpton, a clownish ethnic activist who thinks first and foremost in tribal terms of how his ethnic group can profit from the political process at the expense of America as a whole.

The crucial question is why are bad apples like Podhoretz up on the speakers' platform while all the good eggs in that audience are stuck paying to hear his odious tripe? Why are the worst full of passionate intensity, while the best, who in this case have plenty of convictions, lack almost all media outlets?

A bizarre aspect of the neocon Open Borders mindset, as enunciated by Podhoretz and Tamar Jacoby, is how utterly nostalgia-driven is their is-it-good-for-the-Jews thinking. They don't care much about protecting Jews in America in the future from immigrant terrorists by guarding the borders. (To protect Americans from Arab terrorists, according to the neocons, we must instead conquer the Middle East: the notorious invite-the-world-invade-the-world strategy. And if occupying all the Arab countries doesn't turn the Arabs into Americans as planned, well, it will still kill a lot of Arabs in the process, so, from the neocon point of view, it's all good.) Virtually no contemporary immigrants give a damn about Israel, and some are highly anti-Semitic.

No, to the neocons, the crucial thing is to refight the 1924 argument over immigration, because they perceive that as an insult to their ethnicity. See, the Holocaust is Congress' fault -- they should have known that, even though he was in jail in 1924, Hitler would kill all the Jews 20 years later. (That perhaps the most important voice in favor of cutting back immigration in 1924 was the top union leader in the country Samuel Gompers, a Jewish immigrant, well, that little detail gets shoved down the memory hole big time.)

Of course, this neocon obsession with 1924 isn't really about Hitler, it's about maintaining status dominance in modern America, about strutting one's valuable victim status to put others in their place.

For an alternative patriotic philosophy, see my new article on citizenism in The American Conservative.

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

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