Readers Weigh In On Paul Craig Roberts

In our July 21st Saturday Forum, we posted

a letter
from a reader who pledged loyalty to
VDARE.COM despite the fact that we post columns by

Paul Craig Roberts.

The reader complained that Roberts` columns are “bizarre,”
make him “come off as a lunatic,” and may give the
impression to other readers that VDARE.COM is run by “crackpots“.

Bottom line: our reader suggested that, for our own best
interests, we remove Roberts from our site.

That single letter triggered an outpouring of mail from both
conservatives and liberals (I write here as a

disgusted Democrat
) unlike anything I have seen in nearly
three years as
Letters Editor
. More than a week later, a steady flow of
correspondence continues to arrive.

The mail is running about 60 percent in Roberts` favor.

Roberts` columns are controversial among our readers for two
separate and distinct reasons:

  • First,
    Roberts is adamantly, vociferously opposed to the

    Iraq War
    . He has intensely attacked

    President George W. Bush
    and his administration for what
    he considers to be the foolish invasion of Iraq and repeated
    blunders in carrying out his war policy. Roberts also faults
    Bush on

    free trade
    . The fierce attacks leveled by Roberts on
    Bush do not sit well with many readers, even though most
    admit—like the writer cited above— that they are not “fans
    of Bush or his neocon cabal

  • Second, Roberts has stopped writing about immigration. As
    discussion and debate about what we call the 

    National Question
    is the driving—if not the
    sole—purpose for VDARE.COM`s existence what, readers wonder,
    is Roberts doing on the site? The unanimous opinion is that
    Roberts should write about immigration—at least
    occasionally. Readers pointed out that

    Michelle Malkin
    , who alienates some because

    they perceive
    her as a Bush apologist for the Iraq War,
    nevertheless writes

    compelling columns
    illegal immigration.
    Roberts, however, no longer does.

Here are
some samplings from both sides of the fence:

Dump Roberts

A West
Virginia reader:

“Generally, I like to read different
points of view, but I must agree with other readers that Paul
Craig Roberts is beyond reason.  He doesn`t present facts to
back up his wild theories and appears to have a

genuine hatred

towards the Bush administration.  I am a conservative who admits
that I twice voted for Bush.  Having said that, I can`t tell you
how disappointed I am with him,

particularly on immigration
A case can be made that he is the

worst President
in my lifetime. 

“On the other hand, Roberts
usually ignores any criticism of the

dopey Democrats.
  One has only to look at the Democrat`s
positions on


, the economy and

homeland security
.  Some really scary stuff, huh?  In a
nutshell, what I am saying is that Roberts needs to examine his
`rantings` and determine whether or not he is even close to
`fair and balanced`.  I say he is `looney` left

A Delaware

“My problem with most of
Roberts`s columns is that they violate VDARE.COM`s stated policy
of a `big tent` for all who are opposed to the irrational

immigration invasion
. Most of us are not political
monomaniacs concerned only with immigration. We consider other
issues important like the Iraq War, education, taxes and
government corruption.

“However it is vital
that we put these issues on hold while we focus on immigration.
Mr. Roberts` work, interesting as it is, is disruptive and
should not be part of VDARE.COM.”

Kansas reader:

“Whatever you think of Paul
Craig Roberts`s opinions on neocons and 9/11, VDARE is an
anti-immigration site, and Roberts hardly writes about

“Even if he weren`t
controversial, his columns are off topic and it`s a waste of
your donors` money to run them.  Roberts is controversial, and
divides conservatives other over issues that are irrelevant to
the mission of VDARE. COM

“If Brimelow thinks Roberts`
views on



and neocons
have merit, he should
start another website devoted to those issues.  Should Brimelow
continue to post Roberts because of his personal loyalty to his
friend of long standing, which is my impression based on [
recent response to critics (read it

; scroll down), he should first consider what`s best for
accomplishing VDARE.COM`s goals.

“Success in ending immigration
is more important than personal relationships…especially since
Brimelow regularly asks readers to donate money to his site to
advance our collective cause.

“I don`t care about Israel. Nor
do I pay attention to the issues Roberts writes about.  Mostly,
I ignore him.  I want unnecessarily divisive issues to go away.
VDARE.COM should avoid creating controversy within the
restrictionist movement by eliminating Roberts`s columns.


An Ohio

“I`m a
white Anglo-Saxon man of modest means
who frequently visits
VDARE.COM. My modest income, despite my college education,
results from President Bush`s insane immigration positions
including the abuses he tolerates of the non-immigrant



“I often forward VDARE.COM articles
to others, including the excellent articles by Dr. Paul Craig
Roberts—although they are forceful and reach unpleasant

“If VDARE.COM boycotts Roberts`
articles, I will neither visit nor promote your site.

“Roberts is

hated by the Bush cabal,
and so is VDARE.COM. You will curry
no favor with our vile antagonists, who seek to destroy America,
by not posting Roberts work. 

“Grow a spine. 

Thoughts are not crimes,
as you should know

better than most. 
United we stand; divided we fall.” 

A Colorado

“Since that letter about Paul
Craig Roberts seems to have generated a lot of responses, please
add me to the `Enthusiastic Supporter and Faithful Reader`

“Roberts is a true patriot and
conservative. I consider that people who claim to be
conservative lovers of America but who

support George Bush
to be contradicting themselves.

“I wish the Bush-lovers would
open their eyes to see the destruction wrought upon this nation
by Bush and his neocon party. I hope Roberts continues to tell
it like it is and annoy the Bush crowd enough to make them see
through the wool over their eyes.”

A Florida

log on to your website primarily to read Roberts` commentary. 
If you did not have Roberts I probably wouldn`t read VDARE.COM.
Roberts is of the few who understands what is going on in the

Middle East
today and for the past sixty years. I have read
Roberts`s books.

“Keep up the good work by
continuing to post his columns.”

Peter Brimelow
, who has been a personal friend of Roberts for many years, says that VDARE.COM is a coalition and
that his columns will remain. (For Robert`s review of Brimelow`s

Alien Nation: Common Sense About America`s Immigration Disaster

). But we continue to beg him, pursuant to many reader
requests, to return to

writing about immigration.

columns represent only a tiny fraction—less than 5 percent—of
the weekly postings on VDARE.COM. Every
day, we feature exclusive essays about immigration. Added to
this input are other contributors like

Pat Buchanan
, the

daily letters
and our

on-going blog

My take:
For those unhappy about Roberts, don`t abandon VDARE.COM. You`ll
miss out on our insights into the “National

don`t withhold

! They sustain us.

On a
personal note: Let me share an example of my own. In the
mid-1990s, then-New York Times columnist

Anna Quindlen
had a regular op-ed titled

Public and Private.”
it won a

Pulitzer Prize
. Although Quindlen consistently infuriated
me, for several years I read her faithfully as if each word was
a pearl.

Then one
day, cold-turkey so to speak, I stopped reading. And Quindlen
became one less headache to deal with.

Roberts` readers might consider the same strategy. Skip Roberts
and focus instead on the meat and potatoes that only VDARE.COM
provides you.

Unless, of course, you actually like him—as so many do.

Joe Guzzardi [e-mail
him] is the Editor of VDARE.COM Letters to the Editor.
In addition, he is an English teacher at the Lodi Adult School and has
been writing
a weekly newspaper column since 1988. This column is exclusive