The Frumpurge And Immigration Reform

One of many
blessings of being liberated from my

book
on the teacher union is that I get to surf the
web more, particularly in response to

repeated requests
that VDARE.COM establish some sort
of weblog. Recently, I actually had enough time to waste
a few minutes looking at National Review Online`s

The Corner
. The

girlyboys
seem to spend a lot of time congratulating
each other there – and, of course, making frequent
fawning references to William F. Buckley. The curious
overall impression is of a band of baboons combing
through each other`s fur for fleas, while gibbering and
casting nervous glances at the dozing alpha male.

I don`t
think the format would work for us.

The
girlybaboons been gibbering most recently about David
Frum`s extraordinary attempt to channel the expected
patriotic response to the Iraq invasion into a purge of
paleoconservatives. (Frum tried exactly the

same thing
– complete with reference to a “brilliant
interview” by Buckley – after helping stir up the

Righteous Right
lynch mob against Trent Lott in
December. But I guess no-one noticed.)

The
paleoconservatives are quite capable of defending
themselves. (For Gene Callahan on

lewrockwell.com
, click

here
; for Justin Raimondo on

AntiWar.com
, click

here
; for Tom Fleming in

Chronicles
, click

here
.)  I`ve already

pointed out
that the VDARE.COM letter that
apparently excited David`s anti-anti-Semitism and got us
included on his purge list was in fact commenting on a
review essay of Kevin MacDonald`s work by his own
National Review
colleague John Derbyshire. (For more
from Derbyshire on the legitimacy of discussing
MacDonald, click

here
.)

But another
Derbyshire

deviation
(watch that big baboon, John!) provoked

this
from Frum on in his NRO column on March 19,
which does require a correction:


“John Derbyshire
suggests that we owe the paleos a debt of gratitude for
keeping the immigration-reform issue alive. I think it`s
closer to the truth that they have nearly killed it.
Think how amazing it is that not even the revelations
that the INS sent posthumous visas to 9/11 killers could
make immigration a political issue. That tells you
something about how radioactive the paleos have rendered
the issue. I think too that the paleos` hostility to the
war on terror has inhibited from effectively making a
connection between the war and immigration. It`s odd,
isn`t it, to say “I want to curb immigration so as to
more successfully prosecute a war I oppose?”

(No, it`s
not odd. Immigration reform could well be a

substitute
for war. It is certainly an essential
complement.)

I have to
make a confession: I once helped David get a job at
Forbes
Magazine. The knock on him there was that he
was an ideologue and not a good reporter. I don`t really
believe this – it is the standard media bureaucrat
criticism of any conservatives in the newsroom – but he
may well be primarily a scholar. His work is always a
polished, even brilliant, edifice, but when you get up
close you can see the factual gaps, glossed over by
ingenious theorizing.

Which is
the case here.

  1. Many of the advocates of immigration reform have
    never taken a position on the war (VDARE.COM) or
    actually favor it (
    Michelle
    Malkin
    , Bill O`Reilly, Michael Savage).

  1. Many of the most prominent critics of immigration
    in the media are not paleoconservatives.  (See
    most if not all the above.)

  1. Not all paleoconservatives pay much attention to
    immigration and one of Frum`s favorites, Chronicles Editor Tom
    Fleming,

    announced
    two years ago that “we have lost the
    immigration battle
    ” and that his magazine`s focus in
    future would be elsewhere. On Frum`s theory, the issue
    ought to have become less, not more, “radioactive.”

  1. Until the advent of the internet, all of the
    paleoconservatives together, real and alleged, had
    less influence than National
    Review.
    So the real question is why Buckley chose to
    fire John O`Sullivan in the summer of 1997 – his
    departure was not announced until the following year,
    when Buckley lied about it to his board and even


    old friends
    , claiming O`Sullivan was “resigning to
    write a book” – and to

    abandon
    the cause of immigration reform which it had
    been championing, as
    noted by the Wall Street Journal`s

    Bob Bartley
    and First Things`

    Richard Neuhaus
    .

If immigration
reform became the exclusive property of the paleos, it
was because Buckley handed it to them.

Partly, Buckley was
just jealous of O`Sullivan. Partly, he craved the
flattery of the immigration-shy Beltway Republicans – a
sea-change, given National Review`s origins as a
critic of the GOP Establishment, fully justifying our

campaign
to rename the magazine Goldberg Review,
after its most successful Beltway courtier. And partly,
he was afraid of…what?

That will take
another article.