Goldberg Recants On Nativism—Or Does He?

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From:  Jonah

the Goldberg / Gottfried Exchange

While I am amused and a bit
flattered by VDARE`s growing popularization of the
terms “Goldbergism” and “Goldbergists” I have
to tell you that I think Mr. Fulford doesn`t know
what he`s talking about.

He writes:
“But nativism in the U. S. is considered by
Goldbergists to be an absolute evil, just a step above
Nazism. In fact, they seem to have the two confused.
Both words start with the same two letters, don`t
they? What more evidence do you need?”

If Mr.
Fulford can offer a single sentence from me that
suggests I equate Nativism with Nazism I would very
much like to see it. If he can`t find sucha
sentence—and he can`t—I will settle for one in
which I suggest Nativism is an “absolute evil.” He
will have a hard time there as well. I do not think
Nativism is evil, just for the most part wrong.  

it seems to me that it is the Nativists who leap to
the conclusion that the charge is a slur. When I
referred to Mr. Gottfried`s work as a “nativist
“—an accurate description and not an
insult by my lights and by Mr. Fulford`s
definition—Mr. Gottfried wrote me “While on the
subject of gripes, I did not appreciate your reference
to me … as a “nativist.” That`s a crap
accusation, like “anti-Semite,” that your neocon
friends keep throwing at everyone on their right.”

While it
seems clear that Mr. Fulford finds me wrong for
calling Mr. Gottfried a nativist, and so does Mr.
Gottfried. I cannot for the life of me figure out
whether Mr. Fulford thinks being a nativist is good or
bad.  For
reasons unknown to me, his essay doesn`t clarify the

So I will be
clear. Nativists aren`t Nazis—or anything close.
And I never said they were. Perhaps your slips are
showing more than mine when you leap to the conclusion
that being called a nativist is the same thing as
being called a Nazi. But that`s your problem.

Needless to
say, we are delighted at Jonah Goldberg`s
pronouncement that "nativists" (i.e.
immigration reform advocates) are not Nazis. This is a
major development in the unveiling of Goldbergism`s
impressive ideological structure. Presumably, it will
be followed by some attempt (at last) to grapple with
reformers` actual arguments – such as immigration`s
failure to bring aggregate
economic benefit
to Americans, or its
destabilizing of the American
political balance

will it? Look at Jonah`s last three paragraphs. You
skipped over them, they`re hard to follow. Is he
insinuating that the reason immigration reformers
don`t like being called nativists/ Nazis is because
they have a guilty conscience – that in fact they are
nativists/ Nazis after all?

us, so he is.

he just can`t help himself.

July 19, 2001