Our Way of Life

"You and I have a rendezvous with destiny. We will preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on earth, or we will sentence them to take the first step into a thousand years of darkness. If we fail, at least let our children and our children's children say of us we justified our brief moment here. We did all that could be done." - Ronald Reagan

Sunday, July 31, 2005

Visions of the Past Juxtaposed with the Future

One of the dangers of the illegal immigration crisis, with its relatively slow, constant pace over the last few decades, is that we are inclined to forget what it was like before, and how bad it is getting today. There was a time, lest we all forget, when California was a middle-America utopia, as Daniel Sheehy writes in his book, Fighting Immigration Anarchy:


In 1964, southern California was paradise for many people, including me. That was the year I moved to the Golden State from Maryland with my parents and brother. I was 12 years old. It also was the year before Congress decided to open its door to mass immigration.

My dad had been transferred to a new aerospace company in Canoga Park, which is located at the western end of the sprawling San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles County. The Valley was mostly middle-class Americans at that time.

We bought a house in a new development in Canoga Park near the rocky Santa Susanna Mountains and just a few miles from the pass leading into the Simi Valley. Many Hollywood westerns were shot on those locations. Our small development was nearly surrounded by orange groves, open spaces, and movie ranches, where TV series such as “Lassie” were filmed.

Canoga Park was so peaceful we didn’t lock our house or car doors. California schools, including my junior high, were the envy of the nation. I remember learning to ride horses with my dad at a ranch in nearby Chatsworth, a mostly rural area back then. I remember our family driving on surface streets and freeways, where there was no gridlock, to Hollywood to see movies at famous Grauman’s Chinese Theatre. And I remember us driving up to central California to vacation at one of our nation’s natural wonders, the Sequoia National Park. Those are some of my memories.

...

And what about the California I remember from my youth? It no longer exists. The once golden state is many billions of dollars in debt. Most of the Los Angeles region has gone from paradise to Third World and become a Mexican colony surrounded by affluent gated communities. Much of this cultural transformation has occurred since 1988, two years after the federal government’s ill-advised amnesty triggered a nonstop flood of people mostly from Mexico.

In the 1960s, there were six million residents in Los Angeles County. Today that number has climbed to a staggering and unmanageable 10 million. California’s population jumped by more than five million people between 1994 and 2004 to more than 36 million. Virtually 100 percent of the population growth for both California and L.A. is from illegal aliens, legal immigrants, and children born to them.

While local TV news anchors eagerly report on the latest celebrity trial, cosmetic surgery procedure, or movie blockbuster, the Los Angeles area is crumbling under the immigration-driven population explosion and importation of massive poverty. The region has officially become America’s poverty capital and has the worst traffic in the nation. Housing costs are the least affordable in the U.S. The area has officially become the gang capital of the world, with at least 80,000 members. Illegal-alien gangsters terrorize neighborhoods and commit virtually all of the murders in the region. Up to two-thirds of all fugitive felony warrants are for illegal aliens. Public schools, hospitals, and jails are overwhelmed, thus draining taxpayer resources. Schools have gone from best to worst in the nation, with more than 60 percent of Hispanic students dropping out of high school, the highest of any group. Nevertheless, dozens of schools are being built, at a cost of billions of dollars to taxpayers, to accommodate illegal aliens and their children. Violence between Hispanics and American citizens occurs regularly in the schools. Hospitals become bankrupt and close every few months because countless uninsured illegals use emergency rooms for everything from primary care to birthing services and actual emergencies. More than two-thirds of the births are to illegal aliens, mostly Mexicans. Fifty-three percent of Los Angeles County workers aged 16 and older can barely read, write, or speak English. Thousands of aliens loiter on street corners and in parking lots every day hoping for employers to pick them up and take them to work sites.

Dozens of languages are spoken in the L.A. region, but Spanish is the predominant foreign language. Signs in stores, gas stations, restaurants, hospitals, and government offices are printed in Spanish as well as English. Many highway billboards and ads on mass transit buses are completely in Spanish. Voter ballots and state driving manuals are printed in multiple languages at taxpayer expense. It is becoming increasingly difficult to find English-speaking stations on the radio dial among the many foreign-language stations, mostly Spanish. Employers increasingly require job applicants to speak Spanish in addition to English.

Los Angeles looks more like Mexico every day. In many areas of the region, discarded furniture and trash are piled up in front of houses and apartment buildings. Mexicans push carts on sidewalks selling food. Teenage Mexican mothers push baby carriages, sometimes with one or more toddlers trotting alongside. Houses and storefronts look like the ramshackle ones in Tijuana. Dozens of aliens are crammed into single-family homes and apartments. The Mexican flag hangs from the front porches of many properties. Canoga Park, where I lived safely as a teenager, is now home to some of the San Fernando Valley’s most notorious Mexican gangs. My junior high has mostly Hispanic students. Chatsworth, the rural area where I learned to ride horses with my dad, is now swallowed by the Los Angeles sprawl, like the rest of the region. Hollywood is no longer an American city. In the once pristine Sequoia National Park, where I vacationed in the 1960s, international drug cartels have taken over large remote areas. The criminal gangs grow marijuana and protect their fields with AK-47s, handguns, and machetes, using illegal aliens from Mexico.

As a result of these cataclysmic changes, I feel like a stranger in my own country. California has become Mexifornia and Los Angeles has become its capital.


Heather Mac Donald, posting at The Immigration Blog, describes the situation in LA from another angle:


Looking for an insider’s view of the “Hispanicization” of the United States? Pick up the recently-released Translation Nation, by journalist Hector Tobar. Tobar’s celebratory account of what the Hispanic influx means for the U.S. is more troubling than the most xenophobic ravings that a close-the-border extremist could ever come up with.

Tobar leaves no doubt that immigrants are having a greater impact on American culture than American culture is having on them. The ubiquitous Che Guevara graffiti stenciled throughout Los Angeles symbolizes the new “anti-WASP republic,” he says, a republic which values “the dissembling force of rebellion and the idea of strength in collectivity.”

Tobar’s revelations about the 1992 Los Angeles riots are worth the price of the book alone. The riots are celebrated in the city’s Mexican enclaves as the quemazones, “the great burning,” revenge for the U.S. conquest of California more than two centuries earlier. The 1992 riots, though triggered by the acquittal of the LAPD officers in the Rodney King beating, did not follow the usual black-white script, Tobar says: they “evolved into a parallel immigrant looting festival that would in a matter of hours become much bigger in breadth and scope than its African-American twin.” The “frenzied spectacles of running crowds and exploding glass” were the first “Latin-American-style class uprising in United States history, the same kind of visceral expression of rage that over the centuries had led peons to burn down the hacendado’s home.”

Finally, Steve Miller's article at FrontPage examines the situation at the Santa Monica High School, where we can look at the attitudes and inclinations of the future generation:


The social experiment that Santa Monica High School has become is yet one more example of the dismal failure of leftism and the delusions and paranoia of its architects. Once a beacon of public education to which families and their kids flocked, this beachside high school has in recent years become a center of political indoctrination.

...

I have spoken with a number of minority students during my time at SamoHi who claimed that they thought of themselves as Mexican, or Honduran, or Guatemalan first, and American second. De La Torre describes the successes of the Left in instituting ever more multiculturalism over the years; yet, the result has been the development of an anti-Americanism that also contributes mightily to racial tensions. A scientific poll I conducted while at SamoHi revealed that nearly one in every two students felt that America was an unjust nation, and more than one-third of the student body was not proud to be American. In turn, the vast majority of students wanted to reduce military spending, increase gun control, redistribute the nation's wealth, and expand government. At this one high school alone, the Left has trained thousands to continue building its failed utopia.

If you have read though all of the above material, you probably are quite depressed, and naturally so. What is the lesson to all this? Maybe there is none. Perhaps people get what they deserve in the end. If nothing else though, the problems that California face are valuable to the extent that they put a spotlight on the problem.

As I wrote on another post a while back:


One of the results of a politically correct, multicultural society is to radically reinvent society into a form of bondage or coerced association between a collection of productive individuals on one hand, and parasitic individuals or groups on the other. In every society there have always been children, the elderly, handicapped, and others who could not fully support themselves. However, this new coerced association is marked by the degree to which fully capable adults and feral youths do not contribute, and by the presence of an underclass which is disproportionally costly to society or even anti-social. One of the results of a highly developed, highly educated, yet redistributive society is that even individuals who do some form of minimum-wage work may still be a net-loss to society due to the degree to which they are subsidized, directly or indirectly (consider health care, or driving without auto-insurance as examples).


The above certainly seems to represent what the situation has become. Living in America or being a citizen is no longer a special privilege or honor. Anyone who can make it to Mexico (or for that matter, Canada) has practically become an "American"; all that remains is crossing a small fence and avoiding the understaffed border patrol. None of this seems to reduce the obligations of the middle-American taxpayer however. The situation also relates closely to the previous post, where I defined the ideas of "anti-patriotism" and "neo-nationalism". Rather than our country being a nation with a people, it is increasing becoming a legal construct for extorting and redistributing wealth between different groups.

Is this what our founders had in mind when they created the nation? Is it moral or just to allow individuals to misuse the founder's system to destroy it? Somehow, I don't think that it is.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Two New Terms

This weekend I plan on fleshing out a couple words which I think will be useful in describing some of what we see going on around us.

Specifically those terms are, “anti-patriotism”, and “neo-nationalism”.

By anti-patriotism, anti-patriots, etc, I am not trying to call someone “unpatriotic”. In fact, the individuals in question may on the surface appear to be model citizens, even good patriots, and in fact they probably think of themselves as such.

No, rather by anti-patriotism, I am referring to a fundamental rejection of the premise on which patriotism is based. Patriotism is defined as a love of, and loyalty to, one’s country. It is however fundamentally referring to one’s people, the base word being derived from the Greek word patria, for lineage.

Anti-patriotism is closely linked to multiculturalism, in that it is a rejection of any conscious value being placed on shared culture, origin, or other mutual similarities as a rational (much less desirable) precondition for forming a stable nation. An example of this is a certain president, which while being the arch-patriot, is still not capable of believing that our nation should have a border. Instead, he appears to believe that we are the world's hotel lobby.

Neo-nationalism is a corollary to this, specifically, that with weak social cohesion and sense of “us” as a people, trust and moral authority is placed directly in the power or governmental structure of a country. The government then becomes the people, and individual's sense of patriotism correlates to their backing of the central national authority. We see this increasingly, such as in the gay marriage debate (or lack thereof), where individuals largely turn to the government’s authoritative courts for granting of new rights, while distaining, even fearing, the democratic masses.

More coming this weekend.

Sixteen Bombs

From Michelle Malkin, the police have found 16 bombs connected with the London bombing.

Sixteen.

Were they planning on setting off 4 suicide bombs every two weeks? If so, that would have provided enough for two whole months of bombings.

Are they still planning on doing this?

Does this suggest they had 16 other suicide bombers lined up?

Are there more bombs?

This is going to be interesting, to put it mildly.

If these were intended for suicide bombings, and they had casualties similar to the first attack, and had the last bombing run been successful, the estimation for casualties would have been 300 deaths and 4800 injured.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Assimilation

It looks like blogging will continue to be slow here, as I have a final Friday and probably will be studying for it rather vigorously.

In the mean time however, here is one thought to think about.

Since the London bombings, it is becoming more and more popular to talk about assimilation rather than multiculturalism. On one hand, this is great since multiculturalism is a self-evident failure.

The problem however, is that it is not clear that many individuals are doing much more than repackaging multiculturalism and reselling it as assimilation.

But what really is assimilation? And perhaps even more importantly, what reason do we have to think that it will work better than multiculturalism?

Of course, many would be quick to point out how well assimilation has worked in America. But has it?

First, the question of what is assimilation. Is it adopting the political views of the majority? Or how about the historical views? Or what about their cultural traits? Is it forgetting the "old ways", and adopting the new? Is it adopting the majority religion? How about values? What about ethnic awareness? Does it have any real agreed-upon meaning, or is it just whatever we want it to mean? Does a term like that have any intrinsic value to begin with? I don't know.

Secondly however, has assimilation really worked in America?

This question is both a mindlessly easy question to answer, and a very difficult, controversial one at the same time.

Obviously for much of our history, assimilation has worked. That is the easy answer. The problem however, is that for most of our history, our immigration was restricted to people who were very much like us to begin with. Individuals came from the U.K., Canada, Germany, and other, primarily northern European countries. And indeed they did assimilate. It is very difficult to find *any* difference in someone who is of English versus German descent in the U.S. today, and just about as hard to detect any physical difference. In fact, the early white Americans are so intermingled that most of us can only claim to be descendent from some abstract mass of ancient northern European tribes.

The hard, controversial answer however, pertains to how well we have managed to assimilate individuals who rather than having trivial national/cultural/genetic differences, are quite different from the American majority.

The reality is until about the 1965 immigration change, we have always welcomed individuals into our country from other countries which had significant similarities to us, our values, etc. After 1965 that changed. The question then, is how well have those individuals been integrated? The answer to this question is much harder, and frankly much more troubling.

A better question to ask may be, is the general failure in recent decades of many immigrants to assimilate a result of the policies of multiculturalism, or has the popularity of multiculturalism been a result of the failure of these groups to assimilate--even the self-evident inability of these groups to assimilate?

For a bonus question, ask yourself, are Blacks assimilated into American Society? This is a hard question, and one which I don't necessarily have an easy answer to. They are certainly American, I don't deny them that. But are they culturally, politically, etc, assimilated? And if you define Blacks (broadly speaking) as assimilated, does the term assimilated still have any meaning?

UPDATE: A very relevant post at ParaPundit, which I recommend reading.

The ideological Libertarian Open Borders argument assumes that the vast bulk of immigrants are economic actors but not political actors - or at least not political actors who differ from the existing population in any way that affects rights. However, this assumption is so obviously wrong as shown by empirical evidence in this world that to believe it requires an act of faith even greater than the faith required to believe religions. The belief in political ideologies requires a greater act of faith than the faith required to believe in supernaturally oriented religions because some religious beliefs are not disprovable in this world. Though evidence against many elements of religious beliefs exist in this world as well.

UPDATE 2: For those who are not familiar with the 1965 immigration change that I referred to above, here is an excellent article with more information.

UPDATE 3: Here is part of my comment from the comments section which I think is valuable in clarifying the above post.

...[T]he question which deeply concerns me then, which is, do we (the West) have *any*, and I mean *any* historical basis in which a large number of individuals from a significantly different background were assimilated into a *successful*, modern Western country? This is a much harder question to answer. For a long time, we have believed that we could assimilate, say the arch-typical fundamentalist Muslim, based on the assumption that if we could assimilate Dutch farmers in America into the majority culture, then we could do the same for the fundamentalist.

I think that assumption needs to be challenged. I think that we are in too dangerous a junction in history to avoid such an important question. Specifically, is the ability to assimilation (en-masse) a function of, or independent from, the distance between a host and immigrant culture? (Distance in this case obviously is referring to religious, cultural, political, etc, not physical distance.)

Cost of Immigration Enforcement

Go read this post on The Immigration Blog by Michelle Malkin about the recent liberal think tank study claiming that dealing with illegal immigration would cost about $41 billion per year.

Of course, $41 billion a year is not the least bit too much a price to pay for preserving our national character and safety, even if such an inflated estimation were to be true.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Bill Would Give Some Central Americans Green Cards

Help get the word out about this bit of bad legislation:


WASHINGTON -- More than 200,000 Central Americans in Los Angeles and nationwide could receive green cards under a bill introduced Friday by Rep. Howard Berman, D-Van Nuys.
The legislation would allow men and women who came from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras before Dec. 1, 1995, to apply for legal status. Many are in the U.S. illegally, while others are living under a temporary protection for foreigners whose homelands remain unsafe after wars or natural disasters.

Bigger Sins than Offending

Somebody get this man a Presidential ticket! Excellent article by Rep. Tom Tancredo, here.


Many critics of my statements have characterized them as "offensive," and indeed they may have offended some. But in this battle against fundamentalist Islam, I am hardly preoccupied with political correctness, or who may or may not be offended. Indeed, al-Qaeda cares little if the Western world is "offended" by televised images of hostages beheaded in Iraq, subway bombings in London, train attacks in Madrid, or Americans jumping to their death from the Twin Towers as they collapsed.

Electing a New People

Here is a rather disturbing article about Bush's plan to stall efforts to enforce the border:


Worried that the tone of the immigration debate is pushing Latinos away from the Republican Party, the White House is working with political strategists to create a broad coalition of business groups and immigrant advocates to back a plan President Bush could promote in Congress and to minority voters in the 2006 elections.

The strategists say Bush is planning to make immigration a top priority as soon as this fall, once the focus on a Supreme Court vacancy has passed. The push is being planned to coincide with next year's campaigns for the House and Senate, in which Latino voters could be crucial in several states. It is part of a broader White House strategy to forge a long-lasting majority by drawing more minority voters.

...

Corporations and advocacy groups with a direct interest in immigration — including those who need skilled high-tech workers, farm laborers and university teaching assistants — are being aggressively targeted for membership. Those being courted include Microsoft Corp., Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and groups representing academic institutions, restaurants, hotels, landscaping firms, hospitals and nurses.

Organizers say this is the first time an effort has been made to bring these disparate groups together to focus on immigration issues.

Admission into the new coalition costs between $50,000 and $250,000. The proceeds are expected to pay for a political-style campaign for an approach to immigration that combines heightened border security with a guest-worker program of some sort, creating an environment that the White House believes will be more favorable for Bush to step back into the fray.

I can only hope that Bush has "misunderestimated" the American people on this one. Just the same however, those of us which believe in enforcing the border need to get ready to do some serious political push-back this fall.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

London Shooting, Illegal Alien Connection?

One very interesting point about the Brazilian shot the other day, who was mistaken for one of the London bombers:

It is believed that Mr de Menezes, who is thought to have spoken good English, may have been working illegally in Britain for up to four years. He is thought to have panicked when confronted by armed men as he was about to buy a Tube ticket at about 10am. Witnesses said that he hurdled the ticket barrier, ran down the escalator and stumbled into a carriage.

Reading Assignment

Posting will likely be quite light this weekend, as I have an exam coming up. However, I strongly suggest that you do yourself and the West a favor and go read The Pink Flamingo Bar & Grill in the mean time.

UPDATE: Also, go read American Kernel.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Gunboats

Instapundit gets it (at least partly) right, with respect to the disrespectful handling of Rice's group while at Sudan:


I think we should bring the hammer down. Condi should announce that we're sending guns, bombs and trainers to the Darfur rebels -- and that should just be the start.

I don't really support sending our troops to a place were there is no real U.S. interest at stake, but sending military supplies and equipment, as well as training, to the rebels might be acceptable.

The core point, which is where I think that Reynolds and I would agree is that there have to be repercussions for their disrespect. You have to earn respect, and if you don't you won't get any. We saw how that in NYC when they started to clean the city up they not only targeted major offenders, but also those small signs of disrespect for law and order which create the culture that crime can thrive in. The same principle applies to diplomacy.

London Bombing 2

It looks like there have been some additional minor explosions on the London transportation system. It does not appear that anyone was hurt, but this is a rather chilling reminder.

UPDATE: Certainly one possible reason for these small blasts (beyond the rather obvious one of merely frightening people) is or could have been to draw rescuers into a trap or ambush, then to detonate a larger explosive. So far, that does not appear to have been the case. Another purpose could have been to do a dry run to see what the response of the authorities would be to a non-suicide attack (i.e. can the bombers get away). One factor which will be interesting to learn, is if these were copy-cat bombings, or were actually carried out in association with some broader terrorist organization.

Also, see Michelle Malkin for updates and more.

UPDATE 2: Well, at this point, it looks like what may have happened was that there were several intended suicide bombers, but they made a bad batch of explosives, so that the only thing that exploded was the primers. This may or may not prove to be the case, but if the explosive came from the same source, one expects them all to either work or not work, which explains why they could all fail.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

China's Stealth War

Max Boot has an excellent article about the dangers posed to the U.S. from China.


The Pentagon on Tuesday released a study of Chinese military capabilities. In a preview, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld told a Singapore audience last month that China's arms buildup was an "area of concern." It should be. But we shouldn't get overly fixated on such traditional indices of military power as ships and bombs — not even atomic bombs. Chinese strategists, in the best tradition of Sun Tzu, are working on craftier schemes to topple the American hegemon.

In 1998, an official People's Liberation Army publishing house brought out a treatise called "Unrestricted Warfare," written by two senior army colonels, Qiao Liang and Wang Xiangsui. This book, which is available in English translation, is well known to the U.S. national security establishment but remains practically unheard of among the general public.

"Unrestricted Warfare" recognizes that it is practically impossible to challenge the U.S. on its own terms. No one else can afford to build mega-expensive weapons systems like the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, which will cost more than $200 billion to develop. "The way to extricate oneself from this predicament," the authors write, "is to develop a different approach."

Their different approaches include financial warfare (subverting banking systems and stock markets), drug warfare (attacking the fabric of society by flooding it with illicit drugs), psychological and media warfare (manipulating perceptions to break down enemy will), international law warfare (blocking enemy actions using multinational organizations), resource warfare (seizing control of vital natural resources), even ecological warfare (creating man-made earthquakes or other natural disasters).

...

This isn't just loose talk. There are signs of this strategy being implemented. The anti-Japanese riots that swept China in April? That would be psychological warfare against a major Asian rival. The stage-managed protests in 1999, after the U.S. accidentally bombed the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade, fall into the same category.

The bid by the state-owned China National Offshore Oil Co., to acquire Unocal? Resource warfare. Attempts by China's spy apparatus to infiltrate U.S. high-tech firms and defense contractors? Technological warfare. China siding against the U.S. in the U.N. Security Council over the invasion of Iraq? International law warfare. Gen. Zhu's threat to nuke the U.S.? Media warfare.



As Boot goes on to say, the deliberate ambiguity is part of the strategy. One can already hear the critics complaining that the so-called dangers from China are all made up, or that we are being paranoid. For those who are not convinced, I would suggest that they read Unrestricted Warfare here (PDF).

One point which should be made is that by comparison to China, (non-nuclear) terrorism is small fries. We are wasting tremendous efforts, time, and popular will against an enemy which is comparatively quite weak. In the mean time, China is building its military, manipulating trade, enriching itself, and observing our military action, all while observing that we seem to be quite weak willed.

Another point which also needs to be made is that in any confrontation, China fully intends to use our low social cohesion and large underclass of resentful "victimites" against us any way they can. Diversity is strength, certainly, if you wish to destroy the West. The West can deal with a large minority of radicalized Muslims (as in Europe) or illegal aliens and other low-functioning minorities (the U.S.) in most cases, even if things were to become violent. However add to the equation a large, relatively strong foreign power attacking from the outside while fermenting or supporting violence domestically, and it becomes very difficult to know what the end result might be.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

The Southwest is Going Down the Crapper?

Well, it appears that the Attorney General of California thinks so. Vie Daily Pundit.

Monoculturalism: The Wave of the Future?

It is possible that I am being too optimistic or naive, but I can't shake the feeling that all around us, there is a growing sense that multiculturalism is a bad thing. Not the excesses of multiculturalism mind you, but multiculturalism in the whole.

If we are to accept the simple fact that multiculturalism is a self-evident failure, even injustice, there is only one conclusion which we can reach: specifically, that we must support the boolean complement of multiculturalism--monoculturalism. This is still something which many individuals and political leaders may not be quite as willing to say out loud, but none the less, it is the logical conclusion which inevitably follows from the failure of multiculturalism.

What might monoculturalism look like? In what way might the message be articulated politically? Can culture be neatly separated from race and ethnicity? These are but a few questions which we will likely begin to see the answer to.

Illegals to the LAPD: Die, Villains!

Here is an exccelent post on The Immigration Blog by Heather Mac Donald, which follows the ongoing saga of Jose Pena. I strongly suggest you go read it.


During the incident, Pena used a 9-millimeter Beretta pistol which had been stolen last year in a burglary in Oregon. His office at the car dealership contained a bag of cocaine and a half-drunk bottle of Tequila—consistent with the illegal Pena’s previous deportation for cocaine possession.

Videotape captured images of Pena shooting at the police while holding his daughter, yet his relatives are questioning not only whether he used his daughter as a shield, but whether he was even armed at all, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Nightly anti-cop protests at the shooting site have grown so violent that community activists have asked the public to stay away. On July 14, protesters surrounded an officer making a routine traffic stop and began threatening him. He escaped, but the police needed to call a tactical alert for the second night in a row, reports the Times.

The New York Times has been covering the story, too—completely agnostically about where the fault lies. Naturally, they cannot be bothered to share with the public the fact that Pena was illegal—not just illegal, in fact, but, as a returned deportee, an alien felon.

Monday, July 18, 2005

The Future Beckons

One of the most remarkable aspects of the London bombing is the shift in thought which it has caused. Rather than thinking of Islamic terrorism as a problem centered about the Middle East, people are beginning to re-evaluate the danger from Muslim immigration.

Now it seems that this conclusion is slowly being reached in the halls of power. The Czech Republic's President Vaclav Klaus seems to have been the first Western political leader to articulate the position that many are now thinking:

(PDM staff with CTK) 18 July - The excessive openness of the West to immigrants from other cultural environments facilitates attacks by radical Islamists in western countries, President Vaclav Klaus said in an interview printed Saturday in the daily Mlada fronta Dnes (MfD).

"This [openness] is in any case a suitable soil for these things [attacks] to happen," Klaus said.

He said that multiculturalism is a tragic mistake of western civilisation for which all will pay dearly. Such openness is not the direct cause of terror, but it is terrorism's fundamental cause, Klaus said. He compared multiculturalism to the role Marx's teaching played in the crimes of communism.

He said at the same time that multiculturalism is not an explanation for the recent attacks in London. "Multiculturalism is an ideology that says that you should emigrate and to make claim to your civilisation, your group and ethnic interests" in the new countries, Klaus said.

"Mass emigration has emerged as a false ideology according to which there exists a kind of claim, a general human right to wander anywhere around the world," Klaus said.

He added that this suppresses the civil rights of the original inhabitants.


If people leave for a place, they should fully accept the place, Klaus said. He said there is a hope for remedy in that this demand is shared by more and more countries, and that the naive ideas from about 30 years ago no longer apply.

Will leftists and post-American (or post-Western) conservatives attempt to crucify Klaus for uttering these heresies? Indeed, it is quite likely--that is if the MSM does not decide to simply ignore what Klaus said. But it will be much easier for the next political leader to say these simple truths, and easier still for the next. In the end, either the West will destroy multi-culturalism or multi-culturalism will destroy the West.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Which Fantasy/SciFi Character Are You?

Ok, this survey has been going around the blogsphere, so here is what I got (Elrond). I don't generally like science fiction, or for that matter, any fiction, so whatever.

Which Fantasy/SciFi Character Are You?

Hat tip: NYgirl.

Mexican Blackmail?

I am not a very conspiracy minded person, but I have been thinking about a possible reason why so many in Washington are so unwilling to tackle illegal immigration, while at the same time, Mexico is becoming more and more arrogant toward demanding greater immigration, aid, etc.

What I have been thinking is, just what might be the odds that Mexico has a fair amount of blackmail material on leading politicians or their families and associates? Lots of individuals vacation in Mexico, which is a place with lots of drugs, constant bribery, and where the age of consent is only 12 years old. It seems entirely possible that say, the sons of a few leading senators might have engaged in activities either willfully or by entrapment, which the Mexican government's intelligence service recorded as part of a political insurance policy. It would not necessarily take dirt on but a few members of congress, on the eve of an election, to do damage to an entire party, especially if that party prides itself on its families values.

Would this at least partly explain why the issue of controlling the border, with 75-80+% popular support, could be so ignored by both parties?

This is just a theory, but it is a rather troubling one none the less.

Friday, July 15, 2005

No Way Out, But for Every Direction

If you have not read this excellent article on suicide bombers, you should. One paragraph which really caught my attention was the following:


“The power of the spirit pulls us upward, while the power of material things pulls us downward,” he said. “Someone bent on martyrdom becomes immune to the material pull. Our planner asked, ‘What if the operation fails?’ We told him, ‘In any case, we get to meet the Prophet and his companions, inshallah.’

I can't help but believe that this casts some doubt on whither economic freedom and materialism will be successful in moderating the whole of Islam. The majority? Probably. But the hard core of believers?

If a Catholic, or follower of some eastern religion wants to become immersed in the spiritual, they can become a monk, nun, or something similar. If a Baptist wishes to do the same, he or she can become a missionary. For a Muslim: jihad.

The success of Islam has obviously been largely a result of the fact that as an ideology, it was very good at killing people who did not follow or submit to it. In the modern world however, Islam is but a small fish in a big pond. The instinct to attack is no longer such a wise survival strategy when you are attacking nations or groups which are far more powerful than you. Certainly a dog which has shown itself dangerous in the past, with no positive response to training, will eventually be put down. Muslims would be prudent to consider the end-state they may arrive at if Islam continues to inspire almost reflexive violence.

But therein is the rub. Muslims need do no such planning, because it is all in Allah's hands. They are but willing pawns of an all-powerful god, with no power (or responsibility) to consider, much less implement, such grand schemes. This is not a good situation.

Hat tip: Shrink Wrapped.

Jose Pena

Most have probably heard about Jose Pena, who was using his small child as a hostage in a police confrontation, and managed to get both himself and his child killed. Lone Wacko has more background on the situation, including the fact that Pena was an illegal alien, once deported already. What is more, it seems that some rather unsavory characters have been doing their best to manipulate the shooting:


...from "Toddler Shooting Exposes Tensions in L.A.":

"Dozens of protesters wave signs branding police as "baby killers." They heckle passing police cars as lines of baton-toting officers keep close watch on the restless crowd..."

According to Eric Leonard on KFI, some of these protestors have ulterior motives. Specifically, one of the groups attempting to agitate those in the area is a Communist organization. Even less savory characters - if that's possible - are also trying to agitate that community.

The Mexican media in Los Angeles is also trying to inflame their compadres and supposedly lying through their teeth, trying to portray Pena as a saint.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

A Developing Understanding

As we have all been following the London bombing, it is becoming increasing clear that the terrorists were British Muslims. Not first generation immigrants, not asylum seekers or foreign student. As I understand the situation, at least three of the four were born in the UK, and possibly the fourth as well.

Soon after the bombing I wrote the following:


One thing which I am going to be looking at carefully is if the terrorists had lived or grown up the West, or if they were primarily born and raised exclusively in Islamic countries. I have something of a pet theory, or at least a sneaking suspicion, that radicalization of Islam is largely a product of Muslim immigration, and the exposure of large Muslim populations to a foreign culture and environment where they are not dominant. As I wrote in a previous post, Challenges to Muslim Integration and Assimilation, Islam does not seem to have but one built-in self-defense mechanism, and that to dominate:



"I drive by a mosque every day going to the university, so I sometimes dwell on the subject of Islam when I am driving by. It occurred to me one day however, what really separates Islam from Christianity and Judaism. I think this point has been made before on the blogsphere, but it really hit me then.

The key difference is that our traditional Western religion(s) post-reformation have been about a system of belief, inter-peace, how to live our daily inter-lives, etc. Islam, on the other hand, is a system for how to organize a society. From my understanding of it, there is little or no instruction on how to live a moral life as an individual (if there is, it has completely failed). Instead, it is about defining and defending morality in the collective.

Put another way, Islam has no "glue" which makes it possible for individuals to go about their own way, and still feel and be members of something bigger. Rather, when the external pressures are removed, the individuals tend to melt into whatever they are surrounded by (though not necessarily in a single generation)."




I would note, that this is not to say that only Muslims which live in Western countries carry out (much less support) these attacks. But the motivation to become radical, the sense of "shame" at seeing Islam be less than supreme, the development and popularization of ideological justifications for violence--these seem to be closely connected to immigrant Muslims.

In the past I have been a big supporter of democratizing the Middle East in hopes of waging ideological war and depriving the Islamists of support, or even converting them. I still think that promoting freedom does have some benefits and if nothing else, is useful for its PR value. But as an ideology, the view that lack of freedom or democracy causes terrorism seems to be failing to predict what is happening around us.

Indeed, there is at least something of a popular swell for freedom in the Middle East; certainly nobody could seriously believe that a region with so many bad governments would not welcome change. But while the basic neo-conservative argument for spreading freedom sounded very plausible after 9/11, it seems to have maintained its intellectual respectability for the last four years only because it had not really been tested. Sure, there have been other bombings in the West, including those in Spain, but we could plausibly believe that they were carried out by dead-enders, or that freedom simply needed more time to work.

Now however, after the Iraq elections and Lebanon, the neo-conservative agenda has been in some sense a victim of its own success. Despite these successes in the Middle East, we have now seen Western Muslims, who are largely decoupled from the Middle East, strike one of the most secured locations in the World. These individuals most clearly enjoyed freedom in the most authentic, Anglo-Saxon sense. As much as the UK has certainly restricted many freedoms (by American standards), it is still completely unrealistic to imagine any Muslim country obtaining the same level or culture of democracy, freedom, and multi-cultural tolerance as is seen in the UK anytime in the next three or four generations.

In other words, what relationship does a free, say, Iran, have to do with wither a British Muslim with a college education will decide to blow himself up? Some hope that a democratic Middle East will trigger some form of Islamic reformation, but this seems rather implausible. Even if it were true, there is no reason to believe that such a transformation could happen fast enough. Sooner or later Islamists will acquire a nuclear device. The clock is ticking.

Bug Blogging



I ran across this creature recently. It is 3.25 inches across, which is rather interesting. Quite an engineering feat.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Mexico, Poverty, and Open Borders

Here is an excellent article by Steve Sailer, in which he looks at what the population influx might look like, should we allow open borders:


The Bush Administration officials announced in January 2004 that the President's guest worker plan will allow anyone in the world with a minimum wage job offer from an American employer to move here, and bring along dependents. Contemplating this, it struck me (among other things) that our leaders must be clueless about how many people actually want to move to the U.S...

In fact, we have several pieces of evidence about what such an open borders plan might bring.

...

This suggests that, across the world, scores of millions would like to immigrate to America right now.

What about in the long run? We have two informative examples:

The U.S. maintains an open border with its territory of Puerto Rico. One-fourth of all Puerto Ricans live on the U.S. mainland, according to Harvard economist George Borjas, and that proportion is kept down only by paying generous benefits to Puerto Ricans who stay home.

There are currently 106 million people in Mexico and approximately 25 million people of Mexican descent in the United States. In other words, just under 1/5th of all Mexicans in the world now live in America. And they got here without an official open borders plan.
So what does that imply?

There are currently over six billion people who live neither in America nor Mexico. So, if one-fourth of the rest wanted to move to America, as happened with Puerto Ricans, that would be 1.5 additional billion people, compared to the current American population of 296 million.

If only one-sixth wished to immigrate, that would be a mere one billion people.

But, surely, Puerto Rico and Mexico are special cases—where extreme poverty triggered radically high immigration rates?

No. In reality, almost five billion people (4,976 million to be precise) live in countries where the average per capita gross domestic product is lower than Mexico's mean of $9,600. (These numbers are from the CIA World Factbook, and are calculated in terms of purchasing power parity.)

Despite generations of Mexican self-pity—"Poor Mexico! So far from God and so close to the United States"—it turns out that being so close to the world's strongest economy is the best thing Mexico has going.

And, at $17,700 per capita, Puerto Rico is downright affluent by global standards, albeit not when compared to the USA ($40,100).

One of the bleeding heart "arguments" of the open border types is that Mexico is somehow desperately poor. Mexico is a poor country compared to the U.S., but they are not especially poor by global standards, and they are certainly not sub-Saharan poor. Wealth in Mexico is not very well distributed, true, and there are pockets of desperate poverty. However, this is an issue for the "social justice" which the bleeding heart types love so well.

To put this in prospective, the figure Sailer quoted of $9,600 is well within the neighborhood of what many graduate students in fly-over country, including myself, live on. While I am cramped to buy that big-screen TV I have been meaning to purchase, otherwise it is not especially restricting assuming you have a budget and some spending self-control. Ok, so maybe it cuts into my beer budget a little...

Mexican Candidate: Liberalize Immigration or else Terrorism Cooperation Gets It

Can you say danegeld?

While Mexico has enhanced security since the Sept. 11 attacks, future cooperation hinges on U.S. willingness to liberalize its immigration policies, former Mexican Foreign Minister Jorge Castaneda warned Congress on Tuesday.

Castaneda, who is running as an independent in the 2006 presidential race, said security must be twinned with what he called the "whole enchilada" - legalization for the 6 million Mexicans living here illegally, visas for Mexicans desiring to come here in the future, and economic development for impoverished interior regions responsible for the exodus.

"There can be no future cooperation beyond what already exists without some form of immigration package," he told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee during a border security hearing.


Read the rest here.

Hat tip: American Patrol.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Tancredo: An American Hero

Maybe it is too much to call Tancredo a hero, but I don't think so. The definition of hero which I prefer to go by is that of Nordic legend, where a hero is someone who by force of will is able to step up to a level below the gods, but above the mortals. Few issues today require more will, determination, integrity, and tolerance for abuse than striking a blow to the heart of our politically correct, multi-cultural society and standing up to illegal immigration. And few issues today are more critical to our long term future, well-being, and the very existence of our culture and sense-of-self, as stopping illegal immigration.

With that said, there is great news that Tancredo is making the early rounds for a potential presidential run in 2008. Recently, he went to Iowa and has begun sounding out the situation:


Tancredo is now promising to run for president if no other candidates come forward with plans to deal with these questions. He was in eastern Iowa last week appearing before Christian Coalition chapters to talk about the problems and convince conservative activists to start demanding answers from presidential candidates trekking through the state.

In an interview, he said he wants three things:

• "A secure border, including the application of military assets until the time when the border patrol can be brought up to speed on it."

• "Aggressively go after all employers who are illegally hiring people who are undocumented because (employers) are the demand side of the problem."

• "No amnesty of any kind, shape or variety."

Even if Tancredo does not run, he could be a major thorn in the side of any both parties, as they are forced to confront the issue. Rather than let them get away with their typical divide and conquer approach, he is reducing the debate about illegal immigration to the zero sum game that it is. Either you support enforcing our laws and sovereignty, or you oppose border and immigration laws, and our sovereignty. I can only hope that candidates step forward at all levels--national, state, even local--and take a love it or leave it stand for our right to have a border.

Minuteman Project Saves Illegal Aliens from the Brink of Death

Here is an excellent article about the 4th of July mini-border watch by the Minuteman Project. It seems that they were having quite a bit of problems with the Border Patrol responding due to supervisors preventing their men from responding promptly.

However, in the course of their patrol, they actually ran across a lost illegal alien who was very near death from the heat and dehydration. The Minutemen gave him water and called the EMS who told them they had literally saved his live.

So will the media publicize this event far and wide? Will they take back all the bad things they have said about the Minutemen? Will Bush apologize for calling them vigilantes? Don't count on it.

By the way, at the bottom of the article on the Minuteman Project site, they have a picture of an illegal alien they found at the same time, who did in fact die and looks to be in the early mummification stages. If you have morbid curiosity about what desert deaths look like, go check it out.

Weak Advice from Business Week.

There is another good post on The Immigration Blog about Business Week's recent article on effectively how businesses can profit from the illegal alien trend.

I can't begin to describe how disgusting I find this kind of behavior. This is certainly a good reminder that much of "American" Big Business is not American at all, only trans-national organizations leeching off of America as the key node in the global economy. I am a pretty pro-business kind of guy, but sometimes you have to call a spade a spade.

Anyway, one point which is worth pointing out is that illegal aliens are not good for business in the long run. Give them another generation or so and if their children (or they themselves) can vote, due to whatever political mischief there might be, you can safely bet that they will vote for anti-capitalistic, redistributive economic measures, the same as Central and South America have done.

But by then, maybe the trans-nationals can just move to the uber-capitalistic Chinese and leech off of them.

Illegal Aliens Starting Families in U.S. in Record Numbers

According to this post by Michelle Malkin on The Immigration Blog, illegal aliens account for about 10% of the births in the U.S. right now. The one point I would disagree with Michelle on is that the children of illegal aliens are not entitled to automatic U.S. citizenship according to (any fair reading of) the 14th Amendment. Go here for an excellent article on the topic.

Right now however, (and maybe this was what Michelle meant) there is no guarantee how that the courts might reinterpret the 14th Amendment, so there is efforts under-way to clarify the situation though a legislative act (vie NYgirl).


On Feb 9 2005, Rep. Nathan Deal (R-GA) introduced H.R. 698, the CitizenshipReform Act of 2005. Despite the exigencies of our security situation, this bill is still being shuffled around by the subcommittees, and has only 33 cosponsors so far. The bill is aimed at clarifying the 14 the Amendment to deny birthright citizenship to children of parents who are not citizens or permanent resident aliens. Needless to say, I think that we should raise a ruckus to get this bill on the floor & voted into law.

Do your part to support this bill.

UPDATE: I may have been unclear in relating the record status of illegal aliens starting families in the U.S. with the fact that they account for 10% of births in the U.S.

However, given the record (and growing) level of illegal immigration combined with illegal aliens now having children at a much higher rate than the rest of the population, I think we can safely extrapolate that illegal alien families with children born in the U.S. are undoubtedly at a record high as well. Wither these are "new" families, or simply families which are already started before coming to the U.S., can not be inferred though.

Here are two more articles on the topic:

Illegals' baby boom

Study: Immigrant births increasing

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Citizenship Reform Act of 2005

Great post on illegal immigration at NYgirl. Go read it, and especially this part:


On Feb 9 2005, Rep. Nathan Deal (R-GA) introduced H.R. 698, the CitizenshipReform Act of 2005. Despite the exigencies of our security situation, this bill is still being shuffled around by the subcommittees, and has only 33 cosponsors so far. The bill is aimed at clarifying the 14 the Amendment to deny birthright citizenship to children of parents who are not citizens or permanent resident aliens. Needless to say, I think that we should raise a ruckus to get this bill on the floor & voted into law.

The 14th Amendment was never intended to imply that the children of illegal aliens were American. To reward individuals in this way is unjust, especially when the government has made so little effort to control illegal immigration in the first place. Do your part to support this bill.

Awesome

It's like seeing the Lone Ranger without his mask. Wretchard of The Belmont Club has unmasked his identity:


My name is Richard Fernandez, of Filipino birth and Australian citizenship. My interest in history probably began at Harvard, from which I graduated with a Masters in Public Policy. Wretchard is the name of an imaginary cat, the symbol of that entire race of stoic, yet somewhat foolish creatures. Belmont is the name of a suburb I roomed in while at Cambridge, Mass.

Somebody get Richard a TV show.

Self-Deception

I almost fell out of my chair when I read this:


I spent much of the day talking to Muslim friends. The consensus is that the bombers are home grown. If so, this is as much a failure of the education system as it is of security. How can anyone born, raised and educated in his country not know that this city cannot be cowed by bombs?

I certainly don't question the bravery of the average Londoner either now or in the past with the IRA. However, it is not at all hard to see why a local grown Muslim might believe that bombings could achieve a successful political result, specifically appeasement.

As John Derbyshire explains:


...Britain did yield to the previous concerted series of terrorist attacks on her soil, the one carried out by the so-called Irish Republican Army (not to be confused with the actual army of the actual Irish Republic, which is a quite different thing), from the early 1970s through to the late 1990s. The terrorists who carried out those attacks were in many cases arrested, convicted, and imprisoned; they have now all been released, even those serving life sentences. Those who evaded the police are not now under investigation. The terrorist leaders who organized and directed the attacks have been given well-paid jobs in the British civil service, with secretaries, chauffeur-driven cars, and handsome pensions. The arm of British law enforcement that bore the brunt of the attacks, the Royal Ulster Constabulary, has been disbanded at the terrorists’ request, and its decades of brave and honorable service to the Crown are being flushed down the memory hole as fast as it can be done.

We in the West should not fall to self-deception. Time and time again, we have shown that terrorism works by not being willing to stoop to the level of brutality that it takes to make terrorism a loosing proposition. And for that, we have a lot of unlearning to do in the mind of young Muslims everywhere.

Go read the rest of the post however, because it is quite interesting:

I talked to many of the young Muslim lads I've known since they were babies, and I talked to their parents. And guess what? The parents are shocked, the youngsters gleeful. Go figure. The leaders of the Muslim Council of Britain can issue as many statements of solidarity and sympathy as they like; the facts are that many of their children rejoiced after the carnage in New York and they rejoiced after the slaughter in London yesterday.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Ideological Data Points

From Bryan Preston on The Immigration Blog:


The put it all simply, our policies regarding nearly unfettered immigration from cultural regions demonstrably hostile to our way of life are suicidal. Our failure to enforce immigration laws led directly to 9-11 and probably had a great deal to do with the Madrid and London attacks. Our elected leaders across the West still don't get it, even after years of war. They won't get it until we lose a city to terrorist attack, and maybe not even then.Political correctness is prolonging a war that probably could have been won by now and is getting people killed. Yet political correctness is just about the only unassailable and unstoppable political "virtue" left.


Brian also links to several other blogs that are on the subject, including The Word Unheard which has more about the self-created problem of internal British and Western Muslim extremists.


Let us be clear: This is not about al Qaeda. This is about an ideology.

...

For London and the rest of Europe, with yesterday’s murderous attacks on civilians (again…as usual), this is a wake-up call the magnitude of which cannot be overstated. Britain and London are faced with a self-made critical problem of accepting immigrants who refuse to assimilate into their societies and thus breed and foster hatred of the very countries and societies into which they have flowed.

The Finsbury Park mosque in London is an openly bold and unabashed heartbeat for British terror. Yet it has remained. Under new direction since the arrest of Abu Hamza, but the clientele remains precisely the same.

That ideology goes nearly unchecked and is accepted by the very societies that the imported ideology seeks to destroy.

The subject of this post could constitute an entire book. The problem is self-evident. How will Europe address this? One way or another, it must or surrender its societies forthwith.

The Counterterrorism Blog points out what most of us probably already know, but need reminding.


The biggest challenge we face is the fact that the Border Patrol is lacking the resources to secure the border and even when they arrest aliens who have entered our country illegally, because of the so-called "Catch and Release" program in which aliens who are citizens of countries other than Mexico, or OTMs are permitted to travel to the interior of the United States where they are able to hide in plain sight because there is little done to seek those aliens who fail to show up for immigration hearings.

I have often made the point that New York has been declared to be the safest big city in the United States. A major reason for this is that while there are some 8 million residents in this city they are policed by a police department that has some 37,000 police officers. It has been estimated that there are at least twice as many illegal aliens in the United States as there are residents living in the City of New York. They are scattered across the entire country and they are policed by approximately 2,000 special agents who are dedicated to the enforcement of the immigration laws from within the interior of the United States. What do you suppose would happen to New York City's crime rate if there were only 2,000 cops patrolling the streets of New York? One thing is a virtual certainty, New York would most certainly forfeit its title of "Safest big city!"

...

The "All Clear" has most certainly not been sounded! Yesterday's attack on London should make that point abundantly clear to all of us especially our alleged leaders who simply want to give out free passes (guest worker visas) to individuals who contumaciously violated our borders and our laws upon entry into our country. Our politicians refuse to deal with reality. The article makes it clear that our border afford us virtually no protection. The potential that terrorists have entered our country and continue to seek to enter our country is great.

I especially like his comparison between policing of NYC versus illegal aliens.

It seems that in the wake of the London bombings, there is an emerging ideology (see here, here, and here for more on ideology) which is growing to fit the circumstances. As I have mentioned previously, an important part of an ideology is its predictive ability. When Islamic terrorism was "new", it was fairly easy to fit an ideology for how to respond to a few data points. As more attacks happen and we get more data points, I think we are converging on an ideology which is more and more realistic about what needs to be done.

Friday, July 08, 2005

More on Governor Huckabee: Send a Message

There is an excellent article here which gives good coverage of Huckabee and immigration.

One point which is interesting is that Huckabee wants to run for president in 08. With the rising public outrage against illegal immigration, and Huckabee's open-borders position, any hope for nomination should be unrealistic at this point.

One thing that those of us which belong to the (increasingly non-silent) majority on immigration can do is to make an example out of Huckabee. Nothing quite gets through to politicians like seeing one of their own go down.

An interesting aspect of politicians is that they often have an extremely low (some might say non-existent) threshold for panic. They are very much herd animals, and when they sense a swell of public anger, they seem to try to beat one another to be the first to switch their position. This is something the left has long used to their advantage, in that by creating lots of noise and controversy despite often being quite small in number, politicians have tended to over-react and give them what they want. Likewise, we have to be just as public and vocal about our position as the left or else the open-border types will win.

Supreme Court Update

Michelle Malkin has the news on the Rehnquist watch. It looks like Bush will have two vacancies to fill, which was kind of expected.

The rather obvious danger here is that Bush will appoint one solid conservative, and then a 1/2 conservative which will maintain the status quo of the court. It does not take a genius to realize who that 1/2 conservative would be.

Michelle also has more on that individual here, where she has an excellent point which I suspect most have not thought about. Go read it.

Bill Quick thinks that this could be a big distraction from the London bombing:


[Rehnquist's retirement ] should also distract the public's attention from the terror attack in London, something I suspect the Bush administration wants very much to do.

It will indeed be interesting to see where the focus of the media and political establishment goes in the following days.

Fighting the Enemy Inside

There is an good post on Daily Pundit which asks, will the British fight back?

On one hand, I think and hope they will. On the other hand, as John Derbyshire explains, it may not be so certain:


...in all probability, Britain will yield to “these people.” This can be said with fair certainty because Britain did yield to the previous concerted series of terrorist attacks on her soil, the one carried out by the so-called Irish Republican Army (not to be confused with the actual army of the actual Irish Republic, which is a quite different thing), from the early 1970s through to the late 1990s. The terrorists who carried out those attacks were in many cases arrested, convicted, and imprisoned; they have now all been released, even those serving life sentences. Those who evaded the police are not now under investigation. The terrorist leaders who organized and directed the attacks have been given well-paid jobs in the British civil service, with secretaries, chauffeur-driven cars, and handsome pensions. The arm of British law enforcement that bore the brunt of the attacks, the Royal Ulster Constabulary, has been disbanded at the terrorists’ request, and its decades of brave and honorable service to the Crown are being flushed down the memory hole as fast as it can be done.

The post also include some suggestions from the Center on Terrorism and Counterterrorism at the Foreign Policy Research Institute in Philadelphia, Philadelphia:


a) Stop being politically correct and define the enemy clearly - it is Islamism. If established Muslim groups persist in opposing common sense measures to counter terrorism, make it clear that that amounts to indirect support for it, never mind the declared intentions.

b) Completely reform the asylum and immigration policies;

c) Either legalize indefinite internment for non-citizen radicals, or extradite them. If that requires changes in the EU human rights legislation or UK rejection of it, so be it.

d) Criminalize recruiting and indoctrination of radicals by UK residents.

e) Learn from the French - yes, from the French.

They have learned from the wave of Islamic terror in France in the mid-1990s. For instance, imams coming to France now must speak French; the process of training them in France has began; imams preaching anti-Semitism or the murder of "infidels" are often expelled - expeditiously; at government instigation, a French Council of the Muslim Religion (Conseil français du culte musulman - CFCM) has been established, institutionalizing the dialogue with the authorities; mosques, whether legal or illegal, are under permanent surveillance; suspected terrorists are detained for longer periods, and the simple intention to join or have association with terrorists is a crime.

These are all good, common sense steps which should be taken. However do we in the West have the will to look at ourselves and re-evaluate our politically correct society? I fear that the danger most feel from terrorism is still quite small compared to the emotional cost that many people would pay if they had to admit that their politically correct, multi-cultural dreams, policies, and general worldview were wrong.

Arkansas' Governor Looks Forward to Becoming a Minority Member

Certainly one of the more outrageous recent comments by an elected representative is from the Governor of Arkansas, speaking before the League of United Latin American Citizens.


Although he never actually talked about the U.S. or Arkansas immigration policy, Huckabee made it very clear where he stood on the issue. In his opening remarks, he said the nation will need to address the concerns of the Hispanic community because of its growing influence and population base.

"Pretty soon, Southern white guys like me may be in the minority," Huckabee said jokingly as the crowd roared in laughter.

He told the LULAC delegates that their presence in the state's capital city was very important because Arkansas has one of the fastest growing Hispanic populations in the nation.

"Your gathering is so very significant for our state," Huckabee said. "We are delighted to have you."

Despite several light moments, Huckabee did not stray away from several controversial issues that made him a target of criticism during the recently ended 85th General Assembly. He said Arkansas needs to make the transition from a traditional Southern state to one that recognizes and cherishes diversity "in culture, in language and in population."

The boys over at Majority Right, at times controversial but never boring, were first on this and have suggested that we concerned citizens help spread Governor Huckabee's humor to others so that they too may be able to enjoy it.

More specifically, they are trying to get a billboard put up in Arkansas, as well as possibly a Google keyword ad.

They also provide the phone number which you can call to talk to the governor's office, which is 501-682-2345.

Beck already called it, here is what response he got:


Did I call the Governor’s Office?

Yes. The secretary answered and I asked if the governor finds such jokes, as he told to LULAC, funny? If so what exactly is funny about it? I asked if a Mexican where giving a speech before a room full of Whites, joking about the extinction of Blacks, would that too be funny?

After that I was transferred to a special secretary where I repeated my question - she gasped in indignation at my comments. I was then transferred to the governor’s voicemail system, where I left the message - including my contact information.

Minutemanphobia

The Immigration Blog has a good post here about the vilification of the Texas Minuteman Project in the media. The blatant bias which the media displays is a good indicator of just how far the leftist elite are out of touch with the majority. If the MSN keeps this up, they risk putting their (remaining) credibility on the line as the Minuteman Project gains momentum.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Good and Bad News on Illegal Immigration

There are good signs that our elected representatives in the halls of power are beginning to hear the voice of the overwhelming majority of Americans on illegal immigration:


The Bush administration's stance on immigration, already the cause of a political split with some Republicans in Congress, is beginning to erode lawmakers' support for such presidential policy priorities as trade deals and extending the Patriot Act. A handful of Republican lawmakers are citing the high rate of illegal immigration and the potential for an increase in foreign-worker visas as reasons to oppose the Central America-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR), which is expected to beconsideredbytheHouse this month. And last month, 10 House Republicans sent a letter to Mr. Bush telling him that they "would have grave reservations about supporting any extension" of the USA Patriot Act unless Mr. Bush first agrees to specific steps to boost the Border Patrol and immigration law enforcement inland.

...

"I cannot identify those policy issues at this time, but I think the closer we get to the 2006 election, absolutely," he said. "I believe this will be one of the top three domestic issues for this country, because I'm hearing it not just from my district, but from other congressmen."

For Mr. Jones, the opposition to CAFTA is based on the history of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)between Mexico, Canada and the United States. Illegal immigration from Mexico has jumped 350 percent under NAFTA, Mr. Jones said.


The bad news however is that CAFTA, which I posted about previously here, has the potential to force the U.S. to accept more workers from Central America to work in the service sector.


...Rep. Tom Tancredo of Colorado, a leader in the immigration- control movement, say that as drafted, CAFTA confers a right to market services in other countries, thus giving nations a right to demand temporary work visas for their citizens.

Honesty

The Pink Flamingo Bar & Grill links to an excellent article in the London Times. Somehow, it seems that they managed to get some candid answers from some local Muslims. There is not really any need to comment on the article, especially if you read the previous post, because everything is said so clearly in their own words.


Four young British Muslims in their twenties - a social worker, an IT specialist, a security guard and a financial adviser - occupy a table at a fast-food chicken restaurant in Luton. Perched on their plastic chairs, wolfing down their dinner, they seem just ordinary young men. Yet out of their mouths pour heated words of revolution.

"As far as I'm concerned, when they bomb London, the bigger the better," says Abdul Haq, the social worker. "I know it's going to happen because Sheikh bin Laden said so. Like Bali, like Turkey, like Madrid - I pray for it, I look forward to the day."

...

Sayful Islam, for one, is particularly proud of his contribution to Luton's hardline reputation. His exploits include covering the town with " Magnificent 19" posters glorifying the 11 September suicide bombers. "When I joined al-Muhajiroun four years ago, there were five local members," he says. "Now there are more than 50 and hundreds more support us."

...

Prior to seeing the group at the fastfood restaurant, Sayful meets me at his semi-detached rented home in Bury Park, Luton's Muslim neighbourhood. He no longer works, even though he is able-bodied, he admits, preferring instead to claim housing benefit and jobseeker's allowance. He smiles sheepishly and says the irony is not lost on him that the British state is supporting him financially, even as he plots to "overthrow it".

...

But it was the events of 11 September that crystallised Sayful's worldview. "When I watched those planes go into the Twin Towers, I felt elated," he says. "That magnificent action split the world into two camps: you were either with Islam and al Qaeda, or with the enemy. I decided to quit my job and commit myself full-time to al-Muhajiroun." Now he does not consider himself British. "I am a Muslim living in Britain, and I give my allegiance only to Allah."

...

Does that support extend to violent acts of terrorism in the UK?

"Yes," he replies, unequivocally. "When a bomb attack happens here, I won't be against it, even if it kills my own children. Islam is clear: Muslims living in lands that are occupied have the right to attack their invaders.

...

But Sayful and his friends laugh at the idea that they are local pariahs. "The mosques say one thing to the public, and something else to us. Let's just say that the face you see and the face we see are two different faces," says Abdul Haq. "Believe me," adds Musa, "behind closed doors, there are no moderate Muslims."

They also mock the idea that they are attracted to al-Muhajiroun because they have suffered alienation from white society. "Do we look like scum?" they ask. "Do we look illiterate?"

As they call for the bill, Abu Malaahim flicks open his 3G mobile phone and, with a satisfied grin, displays the image, downloaded from the internet, of an American Humvee burning in Iraq.

Abu Yusuf says: "That's nothing. I downloaded the picture of the four burnt Americans hanging from the bridge." It's oneupmanship, al-Muhajiroun style.

Sayful, the only married one in the group, prepares to go home to his wife and children. Before he departs, he says he has a message to deliver.

"I want to warn that the police raids - if repeated - could create a bad situation.

"Islam is not like Christianity, where they turn the other cheek. If they raid our homes, it could lead to the covenant of security being broken.

"Islam allows us to retaliate. That would include" - he tugs his "Jihad" coat tight against the night air - "by violent means."

Pierre Legrand seems to be the man to beat when it comes to bracing our will to fight. Go read his blog.

Pet Theory

Details about the bombing are starting to come out, so things are going to get interesting as we learn more about who did this and how they managed to pull it off. One thing which I am going to be looking at carefully is if the terrorists had lived or grown up the West, or if they were primarily born and raised exclusively in Islamic countries. I have something of a pet theory, or at least a sneaking suspicion, that radicalization of Islam is largely a product of Muslim immigration, and the exposure of large Muslim populations to a foreign culture and environment where they are not dominant. As I wrote in a previous post, Challenges to Muslim Integration and Assimilation, Islam does not seem to have but one built-in self-defense mechanism, and that to dominat:


I drive by a mosque every day going to the university, so I sometimes dwell on the subject of Islam when I am driving by. It occurred to me one day however, what really separates Islam from Christianity and Judaism. I think this point has been made before on the blogsphere, but it really hit me then.

The key difference is that our traditional Western religion(s) post-reformation have been about a system of belief, inter-peace, how to live our daily inter-lives, etc. Islam, on the other hand, is a system for how to organize a society. From my understanding of it, there is little or no instruction on how to live a moral life as an individual (if there is, it has completely failed). Instead, it is about defining and defending morality in the collective.

Put another way, Islam has no "glue" which makes it possible for individuals to go about their own way, and still feel and be members of something bigger. Rather, when the external pressures are removed, the individuals tend to melt into whatever they are surrounded by (though not necessarily in a single generation).

I would note, that this is not to say that only Muslims which live in Western countries carry out (much less support) these attacks. But the motivation to become radical, the sense of "shame" at seeing Islam be less than supreme, the development and popularization of ideological justifications for violence--these seem to be closely connected to immigrant Muslims.

There is the issue of Saudi funded radicals of course, but generally their brand of extreme devotion does not seem to go down so well with Muslims in the Middle East, as we are seeing with Iraq. Rather, the phenomenon of radical Islam seem to be much more successful among the immigrant communities where they are already on the edge. So in a sense what we may be seeing is the coming together of two factors which are mutually beneficial, creating something of a feedback loop.

It seems that the question of where radical Islam is coming from, either the edge, or the center, is an important question to ask. If radicalization is coming from the edge, especially from societies which are already free, then it is not clear what effect that freedom in the Middle East will have. On the other hand, breaking Saudi funding might be enough to break the feedback loop. Would that stop the problem, or just slow it down?

UPDATE: Read Fjordman and Enough! for more information about Muslims in Europe.

Please Hold the Big Stick With Both Hands

Daily Pundit critiques President Bush's response the the London bombing:

"We will find them, we will bring them to justice, and at the same time, we will spread an ideology of hope and compassion that will overwhelm their ideology of hate."

Yeah. We will find Hirohito's and Hitler's armies, we will bring them to justice, and at the same time we will spread an ideology of hope and compassion that will overwhelm their ideology of hate.

Somehow, I expected something a bit more connected to reality from America's wartime President. These are not muggers or armed robbers. These are soldiers in the army of a murderous religious ideology. You don't send the sheriff after an army. You destroy it and those who support it - and not with hope and compassion, either.


I am not going to sit here and say the whole freedom, hope, spice, and everything that is nice strategy is all a bad idea; nor am I going to suggest we nuke the Middle East. But like Bill, I kind of expected a slightly more aggressive answer from Bush.

I am getting somewhat tired and cynical towards the politically correct approach to war. My advice to President Bush is this: please put the carrot in your pocket, and grab the big stick with both hands. Thank you.

UPDATE: Check out Outside the Beltway's Traffic Jam for more from around the blogsphere today.

Why Them and Not Us?

Looking at the London bombing, many Americans are probably thinking much like myself, and wondering why they bombed London and not the U.S.

The first instinct is to believe that it is a product of better security, but that seems questionable. After all, I suspect that security was super-tight for the G8. Also, the British have plenty of experience with terrorism from their friends in Ireland.

One reason why they choose the UK was simply that it is the Arab way of war to pick on the weak. After Spain, the terrorists have some justification for believing that bombing a U.S. ally will cause them to surrender. On a side note, this does seem to vindicate the belief which many held that Spain's surrender would be responsible for causing more terrorist attacks in Europe.

We Americans should not be too comfortable however; there is a very good chance that terrorists are simply focusing instead on one big attack (possibly with WMD) in the U.S., since they know small attacks are pointless.

It will be very interesting to learn the story behind the attack. Were the terrorists immigrants? Did they receive help from local Islamic radicals? Did they have a base in the Middle East, and if so in what country? Were the individuals radicalized in Europe, or did they become that way in the Middle East?


The bombings in London is a stark reminder that terrorism is not dead. I think it is safe to say that Americans stand united in sending our condolences to the victims of the bombing and their families.
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Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Bush in Denmark

Mikkel from Enough! posts here and here first-hand about Bush's visit to Denmark. Also check Enough! regularly for posts on the current state of immigration and Islam in Denmark, a remarkably progressive (in the true sense) nation in Europe.

To CAFTA or Not to CAFTA

I have not really been sure which side to take in the CAFTA debate, but I have finally made up my mind, and the answer is no. FAIR, an organization which I respect very much, explains to congress why this is a bad idea:


...even though CAFTA does not have any explicit visa provisions that would create additional unfair competition with American workers, the trade dispute tribunal provisions create a ready avenue for Central Americans to seek trade sanctions against U.S. companies any time that Central Americans are denied visas, and sanctions would pressure U.S. companies to request Congress to lessen visa issuance standards and increase visa ceilings to end the sanctions. Thus, the absence of direct visa provisions in CAFTA only disguises the likely pressures for increased visas for Central Americans to take U.S. jobs.
This is not a good situation. Spread the word, and contact your representatives to ensure that the answer from Congress is no.

More on Africa and Aid

I have just run across Bad Example, but when I read this post I was quite impressed:


Live 8 organizers suggest the following methods for eliminating poverty in Africa: writing off debt from African nations, giving more foreign aid to African nations, and lowering taxes & tariffs on goods exported from African nations.

Idiots.

They're looking at it completely backwards. They ask themselves "what should we do to eliminate poverty?" But that's like asking "What should we do to eliminate gravity?"

Poverty is the natural state of humanity. If you want to be poor (i.e lacking in sufficient, water, food, clothing, or shelter), you don't have to do a damn thing.

The question to ask is "What should we do to earn wealth?" because that's what the REAL goal is. It's like asking "What should we do to be able to fly?". Gravity still exists, but the properties of differential air pressure over a curved surface provides the power to make gravity irrelevant.


Read the rest here.

Successful Rally at New London



There was an excellent rally in New London today over the Kelo Supreme Court decision. About 1000 people are reported to have attended, which is a good start. Check out The Autonomist for more.

The only comment I would add, is that we need to see a lot more of the flag shown above.

Hat tip: Instapundit.

See previous post on topic here.

Africa and Aid

Mark in Mexico has an excellent post about the problem of aid to Africa. From an interview with Der Spiegal, Kenyan economist James Shikwati says:


Why do we get these mountains of clothes? No one is freezing here. Instead, our tailors lose their livlihoods. They're in the same position as our farmers. No one in the low-wage world of Africa can be cost-efficient enough to keep pace with donated products.

Go read it.

UPDATE: What does $1 a day buy in Africa? Not a lot, but more than you might think.

Wolves in Sheep's Clothing

Lone Wacko has an excellent look at a group featured in an article in the Las Vegas Sun, called the Immigrant Workers Citizenship Project.


It concerns a group called the Citizenship Project led by one Rev. Phil Carolin, which helps immigrants fill out citizenship paperwork and the like. That organization (whose full name appears to be Immigrant Workers Citizenship Project) has a deal with Nevada where a portion of the sales of a license plate design are donated to their coffers.

Just a bunch of concerned citizens helping other people become citizens, right? Not quite:


...The IWCP was founded by the Rev. Phil Carolin, who is an Episcopal priest, along with several union representatives. Rev. Carolin is one of twenty clergy who form the Las Vegas Interfaith Council on Worker Justice, a group that partnered with the AFL-CIO and picketed the New York-New York hotel/casino, located in Las Vegas, in 1997. Several local business leaders have claimed that the group is nothing but an excuse for union strong-arming in clerical garb. Rev. Carolin and the Interfaith Council have also joined forces with the American Civil Liberties Union to oppose police background checks on potential Las Vegas employees...

This is a cruel reminder that while the press loves to be critical, even hostile, to citizen groups like the Minuteman Project, they are perfectly willing to lionized big-money funded organizations and propaganda outlets.

Go to Lone Wacko for the rest.

Best of Our Way of Life

Here are the posts to date which I feel belong in the "best of" category. I find it hard to believe that this little blog started only nine weeks ago. It has been a ton of fun, and it's just getting started!

If you are new to this blog, and especially if you are concerned about illegal immigration and other threats to our current culture and society, then I think you will find some of these posts quite good reading.

Communists for Illegal Aliens?
Palo Versus Neo
Ideology vs. Ideology
More on Ideology I
More on Ideology II
Ahead of the Curve?