Thursday, March 22, 2007


This time next week inshallah we'll be in the hills west of Lake Tahoe, visiting old friends. We were last there seventeen years ago, a fitter, younger Laban following a gonzo biker guide in denim cutoffs down the black runs and spring powder (I fell over a lot) of Alpine Meadows, or toting our young son in a backpack. He's about six foot one now, and his father is alas three stone heavier.

Even seventeen years back the scale of Mexican immigration into the US was apparent the moment we stepped off the plane in Chicago*. The driver who took us to the cheap Des Plaines motel spoke only Spanish (we ended up spending three days there while Pan Am retrived our luggage from Miami). The staff in the bar across the road spoke only Spanish (I'd never expected to need it in Chicago, but how it all came back, from one Spanish holiday - "agua caliente - para el bebe !"). There were lots of Spanish television channels and radio stations - and even Spanish newspapers.

I was a Labour-voting Guardian reader in those days, but it still struck me that the melting pot wasn't quite doing the job it used to - that the newcomers were Spanish speakers who intended to stay that way, whereas a Congolese or Nigerian taxi-driver in New York, intending to become an American, would be fettling his English as fast as he could. The impression was reinforced in Seattle, where even the liberal press (even ? is there any other sort in Seattle ?) was full of unease about the influx of Californians into Washington State and Oregon. Why were they all moving north ? It seemed that, like Londoners, they were moving 'to escape the frantic lifestyle'.

Now we're that much further down the road. Just as in England, immigration levels are such that, as Victor Davis Hanson writes in City Journal, it's noticed by everyone.

He puts his finger on two problems which are exactly those of England - the sheer scale of the influx and the loss of cultural self-confidence in the host community, which both encourages further immigration and makes integration less likely.

In the 1970s, perhaps a few million illegals resided in the United States, and their unassimilated presence went largely unnoticed. Most Americans felt that the formidable powers of integration and popular culture would continue to incorporate any distinctive ethnic enclave, as they had so successfully done with the past generations that arrived en masse from Europe, Asia, and Latin America. But when more than 10 million fled Mexico in little over a decade—the great majority poor, without English, job skills, a high school education, and legality—entire apartheid communities in the American Southwest began springing up.

During the heyday of multiculturalism and political correctness in the 1980s, the response of us, the hosts, to this novel challenge was not to insist upon the traditional assimilation of the newcomer but rather to accommodate the illegal alien with official Spanish-language documents, bilingual education, and ethnic boosterism in our media, politics, and education. These responses only encouraged more illegals to come, on the guarantee that their material life could be better and yet their culture unchanged in the United States. We now see the results. Los Angeles is today the second-largest Mexican city in the world; one out of every ten Mexican nationals resides in the United States, the vast majority illegally.

The whole piece rings so many bells. I often think how much easier a criminal lifetyle - say a VAT fraudster or benefit cheat - would be for a newcomer to enter than for a native. They can pick up the necessary ID and other documents - I wouldn't know where to start. They would find government agencies less likely to ask questions and lift up stones for fear of being accused of racism. And the tab is picked up by the law-abiding. This passage reminds me of the blind eye turned by UK local authorities to infractions by travellers.

The problem with all this is that our now-spurned laws were originally intended to ensure an (admittedly thin) veneer of civilization over innate chaos — roads full of drivers who have passed a minimum test to ensure that they are not a threat to others; single-family residence zoning to ensure that there are adequate sewer, garbage, and water services for all; periodic county inspections to ensure that untethered dogs are licensed and free of disease and that housing is wired and plumbed properly to prevent mayhem; and a consensus on school taxes to ensure that there are enough teachers and classrooms for such sudden spikes in student populations.

All these now-neglected or forgotten rules proved costly to the taxpayer. In my own experience, the slow progress made in rural California since the 1950s of my youth—in which the county inspected our farm’s rural dwellings, eliminated the once-ubiquitous rural outhouse (outside toilet - LT), shut down substandard housing, and fined violators in hopes of providing a uniform humane standard of residence for all rural residents—has been abandoned in just a few years of laissez-faire policy toward illegal aliens. My own neighborhood is reverting to conditions common about 1950, but with the insult of far higher tax rates added to the injury of nonexistent enforcement of once-comprehensive statutes. The government’s attitude at all levels is to punish the dutiful citizen’s misdemeanors while ignoring the alien’s felony, on the logic that the former will at least comply while the latter either cannot or will not.

In an earlier companion piece, another bell rings in the British context - the observation that the descendants of poor incomers, exposed to a cultural vacuum and welfare mix, are less hard-working and less law-abiding than their parents.

"... the second generation has learned how to live, spend, and consume as Americans, but not, like their fathers, to work and save as Mexicans. If rising crime rates, gang activity, and illegitimacy are any indication, many now resent, rather than sacrifice to escape, their poverty. And the rates are rising fast: for example, while 37 percent of all births to Hispanic immigrants are illegitimate, the illegitimacy rate among American-born Mexican mothers is 48 percent.

Census data show us that median household income by the mid-1990s had risen for a decade for all groups, except for the nation’s Hispanics, whose incomes dropped 5.1 percent. Although recent immigrants from Mexico and their U.S.-born children under 18 now officially make up only 4.2 percent of America’s population, they represent 10.2 percent of our poor. When you add in longtime residents, Hispanics account for 24 percent of America’s impoverished, up 8 percentage points since 1985. The true causes of such checkered progress—continual and massive illegal immigration of cheap labor that drives down wages for working Hispanics here; failure to learn English; the collapse of the once strong Hispanic family due to federal entitlement; soaring birthrates among a demoralized underclass; an intellectual elite that downplays social pathology, claims perpetual racism, and seeks constant government largesse and entitlement; and years of bilingual education that ensure dependency upon a demagogic leadership—are rarely mentioned.

They cannot be mentioned. To do so would be to suggest that the billions of public dollars spent on social redress did more to harm Hispanics than did all the racists in America."

Just as in England, the effects of mass illegal immigration impact most upon the poor - who in California are disproportionately black. As FaceRight reports, undercutting wage rates is not the only immigration-related problem poorer Californians face. His post on race killings in LA, complete with links to various LA crime blogs, is worth a read - as is the rest of his thoughtful blog.

UPDATE - commenter Archytas refers me to three pdfs, on crime, economic impacts, and another on crime.

I only had time to check the first crime pdf, but I am not sure Archytas is reading my posts thoroughly.

"If immigrants are likelier than natives to be criminals, then a rise in immigration should be accompanied by an increase in crime". Two points here :

1 - The missing words are : "All things being equal". All things are not equal, the increased use of incarceration over the last 20 years being IMHO the main driver of reduced crime rates.

2 - I do not argue that immigrants are more likely to commit crime, although some from fractured and violent societies may do. It is their descendants who do, as for the UK descendants of the deeply law-abiding Windrush generation of West Indians, and the equally law-abiding Pakistanis and Bangladeshis who arrived in the 1960s.

The pdf shows in fact that native-born descendants of immigrants have much higher incarceration rates than the whole native population - which matches the UK experience.

The exceptions to the rule in the UK are the Indians, Koreans and Chinese - which is exactly what we find with the US figures.

Rumbaut and Ewing have produced a document which, without containing a single untrue statement, manages to be remarkably dishonest. Take page five :

"Myths and stereotypes about immigrants and crime often provide the underpinnings for public policies and practices ... The extent to which stereotypes such as these have permeated U.S. society is apparent in the results of the National Opinion Research Center’s 2000 General Social Survey, which interviewed a nationally representative sample of adults to measure attitudes toward and perceptions of immigration in a "multi-ethnic United States". Asked whether "more immigrants cause higher crime rates," 25 percent said "very likely" and another 48 percent "somewhat likely." In other words, about three-fourths (73 percent) of Americans believed that immigration is causally related to more crime ... The misperception that the foreign-born, especially illegal immigrants, are responsible for higher crime rates is deeply rooted in American public opinion and is sustained by media anecdote and popular myth. But this perception is not supported empirically."

The 'myths and stereotypes' turn out to be nothing of the sort. More immigrants do cause higher crime rates - unless those immigrants are Indian, Jewish or Korean - in which case they may actually lower it. To produce a 'myth' or 'stereotype' from this observation you have to believe that the native born descendants of immigrants are nothing to do with or not related to immigration. Hence the use of weasel words like 'causally' and the slide across to 'the misconception that the foreign-born' - when immigrants and their descendants in the real world don't go about with signs identifying their country of birth.

Reminds me of the ludicrous mental contortions of one Dr Steven Simpson.

"The study also says that immigration is not the reason for increased numbers of non-white Britons over the past decade ... The common myth is that the growth of the ethnic minority population is due to immigration. That's not true - it is more due to the growth of [ethnic minority] people born in Britain."

Ah yes. Poverty and the potato famine is not the reason there are Irish communities in the US, nor is slavery the reason there are black Americans.

I digress. But if the other pdfs are the same standard as Rumbaut and Ewing, the approach will needs be "take the raw data. Then work it out for yourself".

* we Amtrak'd Chicago-Seattle on the Empire Builder, a 3-day trip I can thoroughly recommend - some good cheap pass deals for non-Americans - then down to Oakland after a few days in the cheap'n'dodgy (the taxi-driver warned us off it when we told him where we were staying) old Pacific Hotel. Some day I'll sit in a bar in Shelby, Montana, where the train drivers change over, drinking whisky and listening to 'Old Paint'.


archytas said...

Immigration, in California, has a positive effect on every segment of the labour market; even, you will probably be surprised to learn, blacks. The disbenefits accrue mostly to other recent immigrants (Peri). Even on the most pessimistic assumptions, only high school dropouts have seen a seen a decline in wages due to immigration, and that's insignificantly small (-1.3%).

Peri finds no significant correlation between immigrant inflow and inter-state migration.

If immigrants are likelier than natives to be criminals, then a rise in immigration should be followed by an increase in crime. Rising immigration in the USA has been accompanied by a steady decrease in violent and non-violent crime (Rumbaut & Ewing). Native-born Americans are five times more likely to be incarcerated than immigrants.

Immigrants who came to the USA in the 1990's were less likely than past cohorts of immigrants to be incarcerated. One notes that past cohorts of (voluntary) immigrants were mostly European. While immigrants eventually assimilate to native rates of incarceration; the 1990's cohort of immigrants appear to revert to native rates of incarceration slower than past cohorts of immigrants (see page 12 of Rumbaut & Ewing; see also Butcher & Piehl).

Bert Rustle said...

Hispanics - A Statistical Portrait

Major Findings

Income and Wealth

Per capita income of Hispanics is one half that of non-Hispanic whites, and household net worth is less than one tenth.

Fifty percent of Hispanic households use some form of welfare, the highest rate of any major population group.


Hispanics are 3.3 times more likely to be in prison than whites; they are 4.2 times more likely to be in prison for murder, and 5.8 times more likely to be in prison for felony drug crimes.

Young Hispanics are 19 times more likely than young whites (and slightly more likely than young blacks) to be in youth gangs.


Hispanics drop out of high school at three times the white rate and twice the black rate.

Even third-generation Hispanics drop out of school at a higher rate than blacks and are less likely to be college graduates.

From 1992 to 2003, Hispanic illiteracy in English rose from 35 percent to 44 percent.

The average Hispanic 12th-grader reads and does math at the level of the average white 8th-grader.

Families and Health

At 43 percent, the Hispanic illegitimacy rate is twice the white rate, and Hispanic women have abortions at 2.7 times the white rate.

Hispanics are three times more likely than whites not to have medical insurance, and die from AIDS and tuberculosis at three times the white rate.

In California, the cost of free medical care for illegal aliens forced 60 hospitals to close between 1993 and 2003.


Only 33 percent of citizens of Hispanic origin consider themselves “Americans” first. The rest consider themselves either “Hispanic/Latino” or their former nationality first.

A rather different picture to above. Ninety-one references are provided, many of which are on-line US government data.

Anonymous said...

archytas obviously hasn't been to California. Hispanic immigrants (both legal & illegal) are massively over-represented in the state's jails. Every day Americans are killed by illegals driving cars withour proper documentation. Every day Americans are killed, raped or robbed by illegal immigrants. Areas that were only 10% Hispanic up to ten years ago are now majority Hispanic.
Afro-Americans are being ethnically cleansed from some areas (Hawaiian Gardens being one example) by gangs of Latino immigrants.
California is being absorbed into Mexico one district at a time - drive thru any Latino area and you'll quickly see the reason ...every where you look are pregnant Hispanic women walking next to three or four children.
Schools across the state are slowly being driven bankrupt by the massive influx of uneducated Latino children who need extra tution. Hospitals across the state are also running out of money because they are having to cover the cost of all the "anchor babies" born here to illegal immigrants from Mexico. Tip to Brits trying to get a Green Card to the States - fly to Mexico , cross border to US illegally , give birth to baby on US territory and the authorities can't deport you. It doesn't matter that tax-paying Americans now can't get treatment at some public hospitals because all the budgets have gone on illegals - after all the rich need cheap labor and the Democrats need cheap votes. The losers are the Black & White poor and middle classes. The MSM and the political elite have kept the lid on this for a long time now but things are getting ready to blow.

Anonymous said...

I am always puzzled by people who think Mexicans, or other minorities in the UK or elsewhere, are going to 'take over'.

Will they control the banking system and all the other businesses, like the Computer/IT industry or Aviation?
I am sure they would like to but wishing isn't getting is it?

When push comes to shove who do you think will prevail:the minority or the majority?

Anonymous said...

Anon. above,

There is a case study that can deal with some your doubts. It's called LEBANON.

Another anon.

Fulham Reactionary said...

Anonymous @ 2.26pm:

"I am always puzzled by people who think Mexicans, or other minorities in the UK or elsewhere, are going to 'take over'.

Will they control the banking system and all the other businesses, like the Computer/IT industry or Aviation?"

Most probably not. But the takeover going on in the UK (and the whole of Western Europe, for that matter) is not a question of economic power, but simply of numbers. They (Muslims, primarily) are increasing their numbers, while the number of natives declines. They are beginning to impose their way of life, while the natives won't do the same, for fear of causing offence. Eventually, they will reach a situation where there are many more of them than us, at least of fighting age, whereupon they will impose their will - take over - by means of sheer physical force.

No, it is unlikely that Muslims will ever control any of the businesses, etc, that you mentioned. But it doesn't matter. When they are here in sufficient numbers, they will use physical force to ensure that the people who do run those things do it in a way favourable to the Muslims. We see this already, with the "Shariah compliant" bank accounts, etc.
The situation will be a lot like South Africa today, where the whites have all the skills, but no one can deny that the blacks are in control.

Voyager said...

Well since Archytas has been long dead and Greece has passed away in any form he would recognise he can be forgiven for quoting a report from 1997; and a report sponsored by the American Immigration Law lobby.

As for Signor Peri of UC Davis and his friends in Bologna, it is highly dubious to use General Equlibrium Theory for microeconomic labour market effects; if not downright dishonest.

To use a General Equlibrium Model to derive a Production Function and then to allocate value-added by labour input is completely bonkers and at variance with the real world.

The usual approach is to take micro-ecoomic effects within an area, a labour subgroup, an income-class or a business.....but the full externalities are not covered. Since General Equilibrium cannot sustain an equilibrium and cycles as factor input prices change Peri has done nothing more than try to publish to get tenure.

The method is flawed, the conclusions specious

Anonymous said...

Will they control the banking system and all the other businesses, like the Computer/IT industry or Aviation?

Not so long as they are prevented from voting and are subject to thorough policing.

After all South Africa survived for decades with the educated White population controlling banks, police, airlines, IT etc.......

dearieme said...

"When push comes to shove who do you think will prevail:the minority or the majority?" Apparently DNA suggests that the Anglo-Saxons, who prevailed, were a small minority compared top the Romanno-British, who lost. Still, after 1200 years or so, standards of prosperity and comfort were almost restored.

Fulham Reactionary said...

Dearieme makes an important point. A small but determined minority can often prevail against a bloated and decadent majority. The immigrants who are coming in, or are already here, regard themselves as having a right to this land, and are prepared to use whatever means are necessary to take the land away from us, its native population. By contrast, as I have said in comments here before, much of the native population just doesn't care what happens in the future. They live entirely in the present day, and so long as they have their comforts now, whatever happens tomorrow is of no concern to them. Then there's the considerable body of the native population who are actively seeking to hand this country over to its invaders. Essentially, if the majority is going to win, it's going to have to want to win, and at the moment, it doesn't.

Plus, demographic change means that in fifty years or so, the position as regards majority and minority will be completely reversed anyway.

Guardian apostate said...

Fifty years time may be a little optimistic if recent personal experience in my city is anything to go by. At the least it'll be a lot less before I'm in a minority around here. One friend, her husband and 3 kids left for Spain a week last Thursday; another couple and their youngest child left for Australia on Sunday; yet another couple and their 2 children, who I met last weekend, are off to Spain this summer; a very close friend of mine has finally snapped and he's planning to move to a large village about 25 miles away (although he's not quite sure that's far enough) and then only last night I saw yet another friend who I hadn't seen for a couple of years and he's off to Australia in 6 weeks with his young family. The common themes are that they don't want to put their children through the local schools and multiculturism isn't for them. I really can't blame them. It's only a matter of time before I follow them I suppose. At least somewhere away from here. It's changed so much already and it's only going one way.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Archytas is pushing a nice line there. Why all we need to do to reduce crime is to completely replace the natives with those wonderful immigrants. Sterilisation maybe?

Then we will have a lovely country, except it wont be 'we' who are there to enjoy it. Still what does that matter as long as the crime stats fall.

Anonymous said...

Archytas presents a pack of lies. Anyone visiting Los Angeles only has to watch the local news for a couple of weeks to get the picture. Virtually every night we get reports of Latino gangs killing each other or killing passersby. The most common image here recently is of Latino mothers wailing in Spanish as other family members and friends lay flowers at the scene of yet another gang slaying.

Steve said...

Laban - two questions:

1. What would we need to do to address the cultural vacuum and regain our cultural self-confidence?

2. When are you going to put me back on your blogroll?

verity said...

"the Democrats need cheap votes". Immigrants to the United States cannot vote until they become citizens. They cannot apply for citizenship until they have been in the country for five years and have a clean record.

Dave said...

GA where do you live roughly, South-East, Midlands? Bradford?
Just curious.

I live in rural Midlands, guess I was lucky the schools were Christian culture although not too overtly religous. The way I like it. It wasn't too long ago, but I'm sure its changed since. Although perhaps not as much as elsewhere.

Steve, I think the problem is we don't have a common culture anymore, some people like myself want a christian culture even though I'm not religous, I'd rather have some morals in society, and no I don't see anyone putting up a serious alternative. While other people are just libertine perverts who would rather see the Muslims take over than a return to genuine English Conservatism.

Although one obvious answer is this by Fjordman:
A European Declaration of Independence
It is the EU that attacks Britain, it is the EU that screwed the Miners, Fisherman and Farmers, and god knows how many others.

Anonymous said...

Verity you are being a bit straight faced there. There are certainly pressures to allow illegals to vote or least not to check if they are elligable (that would be insensitive) obviously that totally undermines the basis of the political/legal system in the US. But hey whats that compared to diversity.

As they never tire of pointing out and these cheap votes come at enormous price, not least because many immigrants show little interest in voting in large numbers. After all its not 'their' country.

verity said...

fulham reactionary - Precisely.

Anonymous said...

"the Democrats need cheap votes". Immigrants to the United States cannot vote until they become citizens. "

Waiting five years for citizenship is nothing if you think you can get an extra million or two votes out of it. And the Dems are always pushing for voter i-d restrictions to be weakened - if they got their way illegals would be allowed to vote.

Guardian apostate said...

dave said.. sorry, I'm a bit late in replying. I live in the West Midlands. Wolverhampton to be exact. Our local MP recently held it up as a shining example of multiculturism in parliament (he was also the Labour MP grandly pronouncing to be a friend of Islam in the Undercover Mosque documentary). On the surface it may seem to be true but underneath many people are unhappy with what's developing. Without any seeming alternative they just quietly leave. I know many people of Afro-Caribbean descent, many of whom I like a lot, but sadly, on balance, I've come to the conclusion I'd rather live in a more English setting. It's not just British culture that's affected. The days of the blues parties and sound system clashes are pretty much over. It's just too dangerous. I'm not overly taken by Indian culture either. I have 4, living in a tiny one bedroom flat above me, and I appear to have absolutely zero in common with them. They talk in their own language amongst themselves and mostly listen to Indian music and radio. My culture is slowly falling away in so many subtle ways. It is't only immigration Labour has got wrong. For me, in some ways quite worse, is the state of Education. That seemed to be the tipping point for most of my friends with families who've left.

chachi said...

The problem is westerners have little or no culture, i'm pakistani & all my white friends are drawn to the way asians (not all) live, the brotherhood thing an all, i've got white mates who can speak my language, they'd rather hang with pakistanis than with their white associates who come from work only to go to the pub, get drunk etc, i can see why they dont want to associate with that, this is what happens when a nation becomes wealthy, money erodes culture & bonds between people. Look at lot of the white youth today, they've converted to hip hop, taking on another people's culture, & thats what they'll pass on to their kids, if they don't have an identity/culture of their own they'll attach themselves to anothers........Resulting in people like you guys complaining, blaming it on the immigrants...either way your f~#ked, it's only a matter of time.

Life in the Northwest said...

ifIn the UK it is quite evident that Afro Caribbean immigrant descendents are the driving force for 60% of violent crime, whilst only making up 2% of the population. In some Asian (Muslim) areas the same thing applies where they are the majority e.g. Parts of London, Bradford, Oldham, Leicester etc.

In both case their parents or grandparents were noted for their hard work and good behaviour.

The fact that mass immigration without assimilation/integration is a disaster for the host population, is hardly disputable (except by politicians), and in Fiji we can see how it pans out when the host population become out numbered.

However we can't easily turn back the clock. The only way to force integration is to close the doors for 30 yrs on all fresh immigrants (except maybe from groups culturally similar to the hosts). This will artificially create conditions similar to those pre 1939, when extended families could not be bought over under the guise of 'dependents', and marriages had to be amongst local immigrant groups, or with natives.

Currently these marriages come from an endless source of non integrated people. These dependents or spouses have no need to speak English and mostly don't, this just fuels the 'little Islam' syndrome.

But as we have lost the will to defend our borders or our culture (at least at the political level), then the issue is why do the 2nd / 3rd generations just collapse into criminality, given that they have the advantages (and assistance) that their fellows in the 'old country' don't have?

Well one factor is education, in many of these latest groups, education was not appreciated at home before they came here and they were only allowed in as factory fodder. E.g. In Muslim societies women are rarely educated by choice and for the majority education is endless recitations of the Quran.

This has engendered a series of low achievement culture, with a high consumer demand. Dealing drugs solves that equation.

The other major factor is brokenness of some of the cultures e.g. Somalis or Afro Caribbean’s, by that I mean that they are either slave descendents, and or barely a generation out of colonialism. There is a breakdown of any cultural controls that they had at home and nothing to replace them with over here.

The spate of Gun crimes in the UK are a good example of this.