One sharp Indian

A couple of days back, I posted a reaction to the presidential debate which noted how different it was from previous debates, specifically the polite one between Jack Kennedy and Tricky Dick Nixon in 1960.

I posed the questions: What is happening with the world? Where is decorum? Where is civilization? In this brief video. Dinesh D’Souza nails the basic reason. The political parties once agreed on goals while disagreeing on how to attain them. That agreement on goals has vanished, taking civility along with it.

The erosion of citizenship

Today many condemn the idea of nationalism by connecting it to race hatred (e.g., white nationalism). But historically, the modern nation-state has proven uniquely suitable to preserving individual rights.

The American nation in particular was successful in uniting individuals of different races, ethnic backgrounds, and creeds into one people based on shared principles, a unique physical space, and a common national story.

Our nation is the best example in human history of positive nationalism.

The key to this benign nationalism is American citizenship, based on an understanding of American exceptionalism and formed by the American melting pot. But today, our citizenship is eroding and, along with it, American nationalism in the positive sense is disappearing.

American citizenship is eroding in three ways.

First, we are blurring the line between mere residents and citizens. We have between 45-50 million non-native-born residents in the United States today — the largest absolute number we’ve ever had.

There’s no legal problem with the 30 million of them who have green cards or have acquired citizenship — although even 30 million is a challenge for the American melting pot to assimilate and integrate.

But we also have, according to a recent Yale and MIT study, about 20 million people who are here illegally. In regard to them, the classical ingredients of American citizenship — the right to leave or enter the country as one pleases, for example, or to vote in elections, or to reside here as long as one pleases — are being blurred.

Where I live, in California, if you’re here illegally, you can de facto go back and forth across the border as you wish. In San Francisco, you can vote in some school board elections (the same is under consideration in some places in New England). And as we see with the DACA program, illegal residents can de facto live in the U.S. indefinitely.

We are becoming a country of tribes.

Some policies even discriminate against citizens. An illegal resident in California who is charged with a crime is not subject to federal immigration law to the full extent, whereas a citizen who flies into Los Angeles from overseas without a passport will be detained.

If you are in California as an illegal resident, you can obtain a driver’s license as citizens have in the past; whereas for citizens, starting next year, there will be an extra burden: to travel by commercial air, they will have to provide at least three sources of proof of citizenship to obtain a valid ID — given the apparent devaluation of the driver’s license.

People who come to the U.S. illegally and in great numbers usually do not have the degree of investment citizens do in our constitutional documents and are often unacquainted with our national story. Candidates from south of the border today fly into California’s Central Valley to campaign. Illegal residents vote in their home countries’ elections — and yet are unacquainted with political issues and candidates here in the U.S.

To avoid a fragmentation of society based on racial and ethnic chauvinism takes an extra effort to keep the melting pot working. We’re no longer making that effort. Indeed, we’re doing the opposite, encouraging diversity rather than unity.

Second, we’re becoming a country of tribes. The idea of multi-racialism — the notion that we’re of different races but we share a common culture — is eroding.

To avoid a fragmentation of society takes an extra effort. We are no longer making that effort. We are doing the opposite.

At many colleges and universities today, you can choose in advance the racial background of your roommate. Campuses have “safe spaces” that are reserved for people of particular races. There are dorms where students segregate according to race. Ethnic studies departments thrive by emphasizing racial exceptionalism.

Do we wonder why Elizabeth Warren chose to be a Native American, which, according to her own logic — the power of white privilege and systemic racism — would put her at a disadvantage? The answer is that she sought a careerist advantage. And Harvard was happy to comply. The law school bragged that she was its first “woman of color” faculty member.

I went to a grammar school that was about 90 percent Mexican-American. Some people who I went to first grade with later changed their names from Juan to John and dropped the accent on their last names. Now in their 60s, they’re changing back to Juan and adding back the accents.

Why? Because there is now a disadvantage in identifying as an un-hyphenated American, and an advantage to belonging to a tribe. And the danger is that this logic of tribalism leads to the kind of social breakup and civil discord that we saw in Rwanda, the former Yugoslavia, and Iraq.

Third, the middle class, which had been encouraged and celebrated since the time of the American Founding, is now under sustained attack.

Tribalism leads to the kind of social breakup and civil discord that we saw in Rwanda, Yugaslavia and Iraq.

A solid, property-owning middle class anchors the nation. Traditionally, its members show the sobriety and judgment to achieve autonomy. They don’t look to government for help. They stand as a barrier against both property redistribution and crony capitalism.

Today, America’s middle class is threatened. Homeownership is down to about 62 percent from 71 percent just over ten years ago. The percentage of a family budget that goes to housing has risen from 20-30 percent in the 1950s to 30-40 percent today, especially in coastal corridors.

Middle class wages, until an annual increase of three percent under President Trump, had been frozen for ten years. And we have an aggregate $1.6 trillion in student debt.

If the middle class continues to erode, we will become a nation of peasants and oligarchs. In California, more than one out of five people live below the poverty line — despite the fact that California has one of the highest number of zip codes of America’s most affluent people and the highest number of billionaires.

If you drive through Palo Alto, you’ll see people living in RVs because they can’t afford to buy or rent a home — and these are people working for Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Oracle, and Apple, with a total market capitalization of nearly $4 trillion.

Additionally, we are seeing a formal assault on the Constitution by our elites.

Almost every single Democratic candidate for president was in favor of abolishing the Electoral College, which is in the Constitution to ensure equal representation to people living outside big cities, and to prevent the splintering of the electorate into several small parties.

Consider the nullification of federal law through the creation of sanctuary cities, in direct defiance of the immigration statutes. (Of course, such nullification seems to go only one way. Otherwise, imagine how our elites would respond if the people of Provo, Utah, decided within their municipal jurisdiction to nullify federal handgun registration or the Endangered Species Act.)

We are seeing a formal assault on the Constitution by our elites.

There is also a growing academic attack on the mode of electing the U.S. Senate — “Why should North Dakota or Wyoming have the same number of U.S. senators as New York?” progressives ask, in their eagerness to make U.S. senators proportionally elected in the manner of House members.

This insidious assault on the Constitution results from the fact that popular elections haven’t been going the Left’s way, and the Left believes that its superior moral agenda justifies using any means necessary.

Ancient authors from Plato and Aristotle to Petronius and Tacitus have suggested that affluence combined with leisure paradoxically creates a laxity that leads to the kind of societal and institutional disintegration we are currently seeing.

Another major ingredient of our current crisis is the failure of our education system to offer disinterested instruction, following from the post-1960s takeover by the Left of our colleges and universities.

The assault on the Constitution results from the fact that elections haven’t been going the Left’s way.

In response, we need to support colleges that continue to teach the principles and practices of liberty. We must support policies that recognize the distinction between citizens and non-citizens and that bolster the middle class. And we need to defend the Constitution, our last great hope to ensure American continuity and security.

***

(The author of the above is Victor Davis Hanson. He is the Wayne and Marcia Buske Distinguished Fellow in History at Hillsdale College. This piece was taken from Imprimis, which is published by Hillsdale, a superlative institution of higher learning. Subscribing to Imprimis is free. I highly recommend it.)

Irredeemably stupid?

Those who are working overtime to delegitimize white Americans have coined a term that they use as a weapon — “white privilege.”

The propaganda is that being white is a racial privilege that elevates white Americans above other Americans and enables white people to oppress blacks. It doesn’t strike those who use the term as a weapon that these same “racist white people” are the ones who elected Obama president and put Kamala Harris in the Senate.

“White privilege” conveys the idea that white people have impunity. They can abuse, even kill, people of color without consequence. Yet, it is white officer Chauvin who is in jail charged with the murder of black George Floyd, while the two black Maryland teenagers who murdered 59-year-old white John Weed at the county fair for not giving them a dollar were sentenced by white female judge Julie Stevenson Solt to “anger management training” and “behavior modification” but otherwise unpunished.  Here is the report.

The story was covered locally.

But it was kept out of national news while white Americans were pumped full of guilt for their “racism.”

The story is more than the lack of justice for John Weed and his family. Unlike George Floyd’s relatives who benefited from millions of dollars in donations from white people, money did not pour into the coffers of John Weed’s relatives. Unlike George Floyd’s death, John Weed’s did not become a national sensation.

White supremacists did not riot, loot, and burn their way through black neighborhoods. You were never even told about John Weed’s brutal murder and the pass that white justice gave to the two black thugs who murdered him, spit on his body, and danced around it in glee. So much for “white privilege.”

The outcome of the November election will tell us if Americans are irredeemably stupid.

But judge Julie Solt did much more than deny justice to John Weed and his family. She denied justice in the abstract. Sentencing a murderer to anger management conveys that blacks have impunity from punishment for injurious consequences of their actions.

Obviously,  privilege lies with black Americans. They benefit from racial quotas in employment, promotion, and university admission. There are crimes that only whites can commit and only blacks can suffer. That black teenagers have no qualm about assaulting and beating to death a white man in public at a county fair is proof that blacks are aware of their impunity.

The response to rioting and looting by the mayors of Portland, Seattle, Minneapolis, New York, Chicago and other cities have reinforced the belief of blacks that the racism of white people gives them impunity from their illegal actions. The kneeling of elected public officials before Antifa and Black Lives Matter, the imposition of stand-down orders to police, the absence of property protection against looting and destruction, the release without charges of looters, the public apologies made to the criminals by public officials, all of this clearly conveys to blacks the impression that they have impunity.

The impression of impunity that white liberals have given to blacks has obvious implications for public safety and law and order.  This is what you get.

The vicious propaganda in the United States against white people is as bad if not worse than the Nazi propaganda against Jews, and it will have the same result. Indeed, it already has. What is the difference between kristallnacht and the looting and burning of white businesses?  

Theaters, concert halls, and museums in downtown areas of America’s racially diverse cities have an uncertain future. People who live and work in downtown areas and use public transportation will find life increasingly risky. Indeed, cities could collapse as apparently is happening in New York.

What is the difference between kristallnacht and the looting and burning of white businesses?  

The propaganda against white Americans never lets up. We have the anti-white propaganda film, “The Long Shadow,” which defines “social justice” as prevailing over white people. This summer PBS has broadcast this indoctrination film in 50 cities, and a second wave is on its way. It is the kind of film that softens up white people to accept widespread looting and burning as  justified “peaceful protest” over George Floyd’s death, a death that they were never told occurred from Floyd’s overdosing on fentanyl, a dangerous opioid.

The demonization of white people in the United States has reached the point that the media, the universities, and the Democrat Party are anti-white. The Democrats have selected an anti-white “woman of color,” Kamala Harris, as their candidate for vice president. Harris has even called her running mate, Joe Biden, a racist, although she is now backing away from this accusation, accusing him only of being friends with racists in Congress.

If Democrats win, the likelihood of visibly impaired Joe Biden serving four years is slight. He will be succeeded by Harris, and many suspect that is the plan. Biden’s only function is to serve as the way to put an anti-white female of color into the presidency. What comes next? Gun confiscation and defunded police? An open season on white Americans? You might scoff, but this is already the case in sections of some cities.

A racially diverse political entity cannot exist in peace with equal rights and protection of law if one race is taught to hate another, or races are taught to hate one other. In the United States for many years blacks have been taught to hate whites. Blacks and whites are taught that being white is a privilege that prevents social justice. This privilege allegedly comes from whites as slave owners who have continued their dominance over blacks.

In the consciousness that has been created for blacks, whites were the only slave owners and blacks the only slaves. As the syllogism goes, slavery is racism. Therefore, white Americans are racists. This is the lesson in school and university classrooms, and it is the message of The New York Times 1619 Project.

This is not a formula for the success of our racially diverse society. Yet it is the formula that white liberals, white progressives and white leftists have created and institutionalized.  

Donald Trump is especially hated, because he was elected by the “racist white working class,” the “Trump Deplorables.” All propaganda organs are allied against Trump. If white Americans cannot see through the propaganda and put Democrats in control, they will have cut their own throats. The outcome of the November election will tell us if Americans are irredeemably stupid.

***

(The above was written by Paul Craig Roberts at the Institute for Political Economy. The column was also lightly trimmed and edited by me.)

Note: A tip of the sombrero to John Zimmerman, my high school buddy and retired airline captain for bringing this column to my attention.

Mess of the Times

 

MANY PEOPLE still get their “news” from The New York Times even though that “news” is gravely one-sided, slanted and corrupt, which is to say politically correct and Woke. It used to be a great paper, still is in certain areas — recipes, travel, etc. — but for stuff that really matters in these troubled times, you should get informed elsewhere.

This is especially true for politics and culture.

I’ve been singing this tune about The Times corruption for years, so with today’s revelation that a woman named Bari Weiss has resigned as Editorial Page editor and the manner in which she did it, I’ve been handed extra ammo, which is great fun.

Read her resignation letter.

“New McCarthyism” has taken root at the paper of record.

— Bari Weiss.

Now stop citing what you read in the NYT. It paints you as a nincompoop.

Same goes for The Washington Post.