What`s Spanish for “Chutzpah?”


While reading

Bryanna Bevens`
VDARE.com

account
of the new Spanish-language reality show
Gana la Verde
["Win the Green"] in which immigrant
contestants

eat worms and the like
to garner the help of

immigration lawyers
in getting their

Green Card
, I noticed that the show was produced by
a division of

Liberman Broadcasting
, which owns 15
Spanish-language radio stations and four

television stations.

"Wait a minute," I thought
"Where have I heard the name

`Liberman`
before?"

Then I remembered—it featured in
one of the funniest affirmative action conundrums that

Dan Seligman
covered in his wonderful old "Keeping
Up" column in Fortune. (Here`s Peter Brimelow`s

profile
of Seligman.)

A mysterious aspect of the debate
over ethnic preferences is that while everyone seems to
have a strong opinion about affirmative action for
African-Americans, almost nobody (except us here at
VDARE.com) seems to care that

Hispanics also benefit
from quotas. Yet Latinos now
outnumber blacks. They therefore deprive whites of

even more jobs
, given quotas`

zero-sum
nature.

This is especially puzzling since
the most persuasive argument for preferences for
blacks—that quotas are compensation to the descendents
of slaves—doesn`t apply to Hispanics. They were never
slaves here. And it makes even less sense to give
preferences, as public policy now does, to newly-arrived

Latino immigrants
. They are presumably choosing a
better life for themselves in America, with its warts
and all. Above all, it is especially bizarre to provide

affirmative action
to illegal immigrants, as is
often done. But hardly anybody makes a peep about it.

Moreover, preferences for Hispanics
are awarded based on ethnicity, which is an even fuzzier
concept than race. Nobody seems to have a

clear idea
of who exactly is eligible.

  • For example, if your father is
    Hispanic but not your mother, that makes you
    Spanish-surnamed, so you`re probably in.

  • But what if you were raised by
    your Irish-American mother and didn`t see your
    Ecuadorian father, like

    slutty
    singer

    Christina Aguilera
    ? How can you be of Hispanic
    culture if all you have is a Spanish surname?

  • What if you are Spanish-surnamed
    but the connection to anyone Hispanic is distant. For
    instance, I have a friend with a Spanish last name
    whose Irish family claims it descends from an admiral
    in the

    Spanish Armada
    who was

    shipwrecked
    in Ireland in 1588, settled down, and
    married a local colleen. Is he Hispanic?

  • What if your mother is Hispanic
    but not your father? New Mexico Governor Bill
    Richardson, for example is constantly

    described
    as America`s only Hispanic governor,
    although he doesn`t have a Spanish surname.

  • What if only one grandparent was
    Latino, like singer

    Mariah Carey
    ?

  • How about one great-grandparent?
    One great-great-grandparent? Where does the madness
    end?

  • Can you be Hispanic if you are
    from Mexico, but don`t speak Spanish, like the 100,000
    or so

    Mixtec Indians
    in California?

  • What about Brazilians? They are
    Latin Americans but they aren`t Hispanic—they are

    Lusitanic
    .

  • What if you are a Spanish-hating
    Basque separatist terrorist who is
    on the lam
    for blowing up a police station in
    Spain?

As the

King of Siam
would say, "`Tis a puzzlement."
But the Liberman case took the issue of who is Hispanic
to a surreal new level.

To help me explore the story,

Dan Seligman
kindly faxed me his "Keeping Up"
column of August 10, 1981. It explained how the Liberman
family, whose patriarch was born in Poland, cost the
taxpayers a sizable amount of capital gains taxes on the
sale of a Los Angeles AM radio station by having
themselves declared by the Federal Communications
Commission to be officially "Hispanic."

As Seligman recounted:

"It
seems that Storer [
Broadcasting] sold an AM radio
station in Los Angeles to a company owned by a family
named Liberman. After the sale, Storer and the Libermans
asked the FCC to grant the certificate that makes the
tax advantage possible. Their contention was that the
Libermans were a minority family. In acceding to this
argument the other day, the FCC noted that they `are
regarded by both themselves and their community as being
Hispanic,` to which the commission added: `The Liberman
family is descended from Spanish Jews who were expelled
from Spain in 1492. Although Adolfo Liberman was born in
Poland, the language spoken in his home during childhood
was Castilian Spanish…`"

This is really quite intriguing.
The possibilities seem endless:

  • If Lord Beaconsfield, also known
    as British Prime Minister

    Benjamin Disraeli
    , whose ancestors were also
    driven out of Spain in 1492, had had any direct
    descendents, and they illegally immigrated to America,
    would they be eligible for quotas reserved for
    Hispanics?

  • How about Moroccan Muslims whose
    ancestors were kicked out of Spain in 1492? (It was a

    busy year
    .)

  • If you are a descendant of the
    philosopher-king

    Marcus Aurelius
    and his no-goodnik son

    Commodus
    [VDARE.com
    note:
    Played by Puerto-Rican born, Hispanic
    first-named child of American missionaries

    Joaquin Phoenix
    in


    Gladiator
    ], two Roman Emperors whose

    family
    originated in Spain, does that qualify you
    for affirmative action in this country?

Diversity, as we all know, is
strength. It`s also a corrupt racket.


[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.]