Jonah Whales on VDARE.COM!

A Personal Response


See Also:

Peter Brimelow (“a once-respected conservative
voice”) on Goldberg of National Review (a
once-conservative, now respected, magazine)

Jonah Goldberg, editor of National Review Online, wrote in
the 
L.A. Times on 2/24/02
:


"We
get Peter Brimelow, a once-respected conservative
voice who now runs the shrill anti-immigration website
VDARE.com …Rather than focusing on how to create a
rational immigration policy that recognizes the
permanence of America`s ethnic diversity, they live in
denial about how to get back to the days when America
was 90% white. … Hiding out in their bunkers on the
web and in the pages of a few obscure publications,
these unhappy paleoconservatives and neo-nativists
have rallied the troops under a single flag: white
supremacy. … Take Brimelow`s VDARE.com, which
features–pardon the expression–a Chinese menu of
white-pride dishes. Some authors concentrate on
genetic questions … [T]he writings of the
anti-immigration right are a bonfire of fear and
hyperbole …Race isn`t the point, so drop it. Now."

The
Monica Lewinsky brouhaha made the ever-delightful

Lucianne Goldberg
, Linda Tripp`s literary agent,
into a celebrity. Her son, a young PBS producer named
Jonah Goldberg, became a sort of satellite celebrity of
his own. In the four years since, Jonah has admirably
exploited the opportunity presented by his improbable
entry into public life. He has churned out a remarkable
quantity of sometimes insightful, often funny, and
normally readable content each week. You would not guess
that from his turgid diatribe against straw men quoted
above.

Jonah
also lends National Review a certain fashionable
cachet (well, compared, say, to

Russell Kirk
).
The Stanford Review even breathlessly proclaimed
him "The
Man Who Made Conservatism Hip
." As a hipster, Jonah
doesn`t exactly rival

Beck
[PB: WHO HE? SS: a singer!]. But there`s not much competition for
the title of Coolest Conservative. While the typical
bow-tie wearing, Mid-Atlantic accent-affecting
conservative pundit disdains pop culture, Jonah, by
contrast, proudly proclaims how much time he spends on
his famous couch watching TV and memorizing Star Trek
and Simpsons trivia. In fact, in his cultural
tastes, Jonah
resembles that iconic symbol of the modern
male media-junkie nerd: "The
Comic Book Guy
." That`s the

sarcastic, Star Trek-obsessed owner
of The Android`s
Dungeon & Baseball Card Shop on The Simpsons.

Granted, Jonah`s recommendation that America invade,
conquer, colonize and civilize the entire continent of
Africa (here`s his

call to arms
and here`s his

lengthy defense
of it) was easily the worst idea to
be put forward in the conservative media in this decade.
Compared to Jonah`s Bright Idea,

Ann Coulter`s impassioned 9-13-2001 eulogy

for her murdered friend Barbara Olson, in which she
famously called for America to invade and Christianize
the Islamic world (and which ultimately led to Jonah
firing
her), sounded like the statecraft of Calvin Coolidge.
Africa, despite all its faults, is not blowing up
the WTC.

But I
forgive Jonah for those columns. He writes so much that
he simply can`t be held responsible for everything he
publishes. As with Andrew Sullivan, much of the pleasure of reading
Jonah is in watching him try

to explain his way out of the trouble he makes for
himself
by clicking on "Send" before he`s thought
through whatever he`s propounding. Further, Jonah`s
African Adventure was hardly to be taken seriously. It
was clearly just the adolescent fantasy of someone with
no sons of his own to be sent into harm`s way.

No
doubt Jonah, who got married last year, will outgrow his
current ignorance of the real world. Life has a way of
teaching you valuable lessons, whether you want to learn
them or not. When I was Jonah`s age, I used to believe
in some of the same theories – for example, about
immigration and assimilation – that he expounds so
confidently now.

The
puzzling question about Jonah is why he undermines his
potential as a humorist (someday he could be the P.J.
O`Rourke of couch potatoes) by pompously posing as the
Pontiff of Conservatism – proclaiming acceptable
conservative dogma and excommunicating heretics, such as
myself and other VDARE.COM writers. Maybe I didn`t
notice – did Bill Buckley die and leave a will naming
Jonah next in the line of Apostolic Succession?

Consider, for example, how badly written and poorly
argued was Jonah`s Feb. 24th
denunciation of VDARE. It will do nothing for
his reputation other than establish him as the
frontrunner for the 2002 Raoul Lowery Contreras Fruit Basket of Thanks for
Promoting VDARE.Com
.

Jonah, normally a fairly funny guy, finds nothing
amusing about VDARE.COM. This webzine drives him so far
around the bend that he ended up sounding more like
Raoul than his normal glib self. In his rush to slur,
Jonah concocted embarrassing sentences like:

"Rather
than focusing on how to create a rational immigration
policy that recognizes the permanence of America`s
ethnic diversity, they live in denial about how to get
back to the days when America was 90% white."


What

does that mean? Read literally, he`s implying that
VDARE.COM`s writers are in denial about somebody else`s
method (Jonah`s?) of getting back to the days when
America was 90% white.

In
fact, VDARE.COM is more concerned about the future than
the past. For example, America is quite obviously headed
for a nasty jam in the mid-21st Century because of the
interaction of

racial preferences and open-ended mass immigration of
people who qualify for those racial privileges
. The
country can arguably withstand legally-encoded
multiculturalism as long as the number of privileged
people is kept small. After all, the tax-free status of
tribal Indians was mentioned all the way back in the
14th Amendment. We could perhaps even shrug off
affirmative action for the descendents of slaves,
because African-American numbers aren`t growing all that
quickly. But the number of racially privileged
immigrants
is booming. It can`t be shrugged off.

As the white majority that
pays for
the others` privileges becomes a minority itself, it`s
inevitable that whites will increasingly act like a
modern American minority in pressing their racial
demands in the political marketplace. At best, the power
of the government will grow dramatically as American
life becomes increasingly politicized along ethnic bloc
lines. At worst … well, Bosnia.

This
is an ugly prospect. How do we forestall it? Jonah`s
solution is simple. He`ll write a column telling
minorities that they ought to give up their legally
privileged status – and assimilate into the bargain.
When they don`t (would you?), he`ll write another
column.

It`s
a lifetime employment gig.

Americans always shoot down multiculturalism when given
the chance in referendums. But professional politicians
– most notably, George W. Bush – have almost unanimously
refused to associate themselves with manifestly popular
issues as Ward Connerly`s anti-racial preference
initiative and Ron Unz`s anti-bilingualism initiative.
How come? Because the office-seekers assume that the
number of legally-privileged voters will swell
inexorably due to unchecked immigration. Further, they
will keep coming. So fast that there will always be lots
who are poor, unassimilated, and thus anti-conservative.
So, the pols figure they`d better jump on the
multiculturalism bandwagon now.

How
can we change the politicians` expectations? The only
feasible way is to cut immigration soon. That would
shatter their mindset and allow them to respond to the
current majority`s dislike of multiculturalism. It won`t
be easy – especially with fashion-conscious folks like
Jonah throwing unhip conservatives out of the sleigh to
keep the liberal wolves at bay. But it`s the only way
out of this vicious cycle.

It
would be sad if Jonah failed to fulfill his potential
because his prose style goes to hell in his fervor to
excommunicate much of the conservative movement`s
intellectual firepower. But it would be much sadder for
conservatism, and thus for America, if he succeeds in

his campaign
of demonizing as "white supremacists"
those of us who try to think objectively and rigorously
about the vastly important topic of race.

Funny
thing, in Jonah`s brand of conservative political
correctness, it`s OK for him to retail

unfunny anti-Chinese ethnic jokes
about the Premiere
of China eating Jonah`s dog and leaving too many menus
on his doorstep.

What
Jonah excoriates, instead, is all serious thought about
race.

I
take this personally. Few public intellectuals have
worked harder than I have over the last decade to tear
down the old myths of the Left and the Right about race
and replace them with a sophisticated evolution-based
understanding of this vastly important subject. (You can
find some of my articles

here
.)

Immodest as this sounds, I am attempting to

rebuild thinking about race from the ground up
. I`m
sure Jonah sincerely believes that humanity`s ancient
and universal interest in race is just a hallucination
kept alive by

post-modernist college professors
. But some of us
are more realistic.  We realize that race is an
inextricable part of human nature. Why? Because "race"
is the inevitable outgrowth of "family." A racial group
is an extremely extended family that is inbred to some
degree. When you start from this simple but profound
definition, you can begin to answer all those questions
that baffle and irritate Jonah about why
humans continue to act as if blood relations were
important to them
. (Quick answer: because they are.)

Why
have I devoted so much effort to thinking about race? I
certainly could have made myself more popular as a
writer by taking the easy route – complaining about
Clinton, denouncing Daschle, hectoring heretics. You
know the drill. I can only say I chose my path because I
believe truth is more beneficial to humanity than lies,
obfuscation, ignorance, wishful thinking – and even
hipness.

Jonah`s offended that "some authors" at VDARE.COM
"concentrate on genetics." If Jonah`s going to attack
VDARE.COM for publishing articles on genetics, he ought
to show some evidence that he`s read some of them.
There`s only one such author at VDARE.COM – me. And I
hardly concentrate on genetics. I have
written nearly 100 original articles for VDARE, more
than anybody else over the last two years, on a wide
range of topics.

I certainly don`t claim to speak for everyone on
VDARE.COM – one of the great things about this webzine
is its openness to original thinkers, who by no means
all agree on
everything. But if you haven`t read my articles, you
haven`t read VDARE.COM.

Probably only a dozen or two of my VDARE.COM articles
have focused on technical issues in population and
behavioral genetics – such as my series on the strength
and weaknesses of the great Stanford geneticist L.L.
Cavalli-Sforza`s monumental tome The History and
Geography of Human Genes.
(Here are my essays

1
, 2, and
3.)

Even
the neutral terms Jonah uses, like "paleoconservative,"
are, in fact, wholly inappropriate descriptions of me. I
am a neo-Darwinist (although

I reject the Village Atheist tub-thumping of some
neo-Darwinists
). Jonah is more of a paleo than I am
on the crucial question of Darwinism. "Let us not forget
that Marx and Freud were once established scientific
fact as well,"

he recently waffled
in explanation of his
intermittent support for Creationism.

Still, I plead guilty
to trying to make sure that everything I write is
consistent with the underlying scientific realities. I`m
not crazy about labels for myself. But the most
reasonable was one that John O`Sullivan invented in

a 1999 National Review article
: "Evolutionary
Conservative." He wrote:

"This is an almost wholly intellectual group (e.g.,
Steve Sailer, John McGinnis, Charles Murray) — not a
politician brave enough to stand with them — who have
realized two things: first, that lessons of the new
science of evolutionary psychology are largely
conservative ones about an adamantine human nature,
the natural basis of sex roles, and so on; second,
that the knowledge gained from the Human Genome
Project and the rise of genetic engineering will throw
up some fascinating and contentious political issues
in the increasingly near future."

But
how can we handle current human diversity, let alone
predict the social impact of the genetic engineering made
possible by new biotechnologies? The only safe way is
honestly to study the naturally-occurring human genetic
diversity that we see all around us. (For a fuller
explanation, see the

speech
I gave to Mrs. Thatcher at a small seminar
she hosted in 1999, or my 2000 essay "The
Future of Human Nature
.")

Echoing John, Jonah
wrote
in 2001 that genetics would be "the
future of conservatism and where the excitement is going
to be." But now, unfortunately, Jonah is acting as if
those of us who are already there, where the
intellectual excitement is, are not EvolCons – but
EvilCons.

Jonah`s describing me as a "white supremacist" pushing
"white pride" is just slander. I am cold-eyed and
hard-headed in order to be a more effective warm-hearted
American patriot. I have always argued that the correct criterion for
judging public policies such as immigration is whether
they optimally benefit American citizens as a whole
instead of any race or class. I define patriotism a
little more rigorously than just the usual "We`re #1,
Down with the French (or Africans)" cheerleading.

I
think patriotism means making sacrifices for your fellow
citizens, such as being willing to pay them higher wages
than is the going rate in Ciudad Juarez. I particularly
detest how the white upper middle class uses mass
immigration (much of it illegal) to provide themselves
with low-cost servants (often tax-free) at the expense
of driving down the wages of the 50% of American
citizens with IQ`s on the left half of the Bell Curve, almost two-fifths
of whom are minorities.

The
simple truth is that Jonah is ignorant about the
scientific aspects of race. There`s nothing shameful in
that – particularly. He is still young. He has a little
time to learn. What is shameful is that he wants to keep
other people ignorant.

I

hereby challenge Jonah to debate the topic of race – his
house or my house. He can reach me at

SteveSlr@aol.com
. You can encourage him at

JonahEmail@aol.com .


[Steve Sailer [email
him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and


movie critic
for


The American Conservative
.
His website


www.iSteve.blogspot.com
features his daily
blog.]

March 1, 2002