Two Nativist Gatherings

Washington, DC: Oct. 2, 2004 - After all these years of me sending checks in to FAIR, they sent me an invitation to attend their 25th anniversary Board of Directors meeting. So I said to myself, what the hell, and went.

I got there early to get a front-row seat. Dan "The Man" Stein passed by me, stopping to say hi and shake my hand.

In the afternoon, there was a series of very interesting speakers. To me, the most interesting was Otis Graham, who was plugging his new book Unguarded Gates, which I bought on the spot. In the Q&A periods, much heat and little light was devoted to the problem of controlling the borders. Everyone who said anything about it was assuming that this is much more difficult and complicated than it actually is. I kept wanting to stand up and shout "Barbed wire and landmines!" Well, for better or worse, I kept my peace.

After that, there were a couple of hours of socializing. Since I didn't know anybody, and didn't really have anything to say to anybody (except "Barbed wire and landmines!"), that time was pretty much wasted, from my point of view. I did talk briefly to Graham, who said that John Higham had second thoughts after writing his anti-nativist book. I suggested to him that these thoughts should be collected and published, and (probably just out of politeness) he allowed as how that might be a good idea. Also, I got to shake Peter Brimelow's hand and tell him that The Patriot Game and Alien Nation are two of my favorite books.

There were several cute chicks there, including a China doll with the mildly amusing name of Yeh Ling-Ling (who, come to think of it, was the only non-white person attending the event -- except for some really angry guy from LA, who was about swarthy enough to pass for black). One fabulously gorgeous babe came up to me to ask if I were someone famous, or maybe from Colorado (where she was from [-- the great state that gave us Dick Lamm, Tom Tancredo, Trey Parker and Matt Stone]), because I looked so familiar. Alas, I had to admit that I'm actually nobody and have never been to Colorado.

Then there was dinner, the presentation of the Kris Eggle Award, and the tribute to FAIR founder John Tanton. Then, at last, what I'd really been waiting for: the closing address by Tom Tancredo.

That speech -- man, that speech was AWESOME!!! The style: feisty, witty, heart-felt, plain-spoken. The substance: the essence of everything I've been writing about here for the last five years. The man's ethnic, religious, geographical, socioeconomic, etc. background is totally different from mine; I don't know him, and he sure has no idea who the hell I am -- but when he speaks, he speaks for me. That's the beauty of nationality.

Fortunately, the event was recorded for posterity. Afterwards, I went over and talked to the chick with the videocamera; she said they hired her for the occasion, and they'd get the tape in a couple of weeks. I hope they plan on distributing copies -- I'd sure pay good money for one.

Finally, I waded through the crowd to shake Tancredo's hand and tell him that I'm going to write in his name for President. He said it was something of a beau geste, but thanked me.


McLean, Fairfax Co., Va.: Dec. 4, 2004 - Having enjoyed the FAIR event a couple months back, I stirred myself to go out to a conference sponsored by Paddy Buchanan's outfit, The American Cause. Paddy and his sister Bay bookended the series of speakers, all of them excellent. A very impressive bunch of people: bright, dedicated, energetic, and overflowing with good ideas about how to solve the illegal-immigrants problem. It's a good thing that the fate of the nation rests on the shoulders of people like that, instead of a burned-out never-was like me.

I mock Paddy, but he too gave an excellent speech -- giving a thumbnail history of immigration, emphasizing the lulls and the abandoned ideal of assimilation, debunking the "nation of immigrants" myth by pointing out that there has never been a time when most Americans were foreign-born. He was followed by Mark Krikorian, who emphasized that the immigration inflow hasn't changed -- still mostly ignorant peasants from backward countries -- but America has. A 19th-century immigration policy is totally wrong for 21st-century America. In response to a question about Islamic immigration, he said that Muslims could assimilate by becoming secularized, but devout ones would be like "Amish with attitude."

T.J. Bonner, head of the Border Patrol employees' union, gave a quiet but shocking account of just what a bad joke our borders are, and how nobody in government cares. Far and away the most shocking thing came up in the Q&A, when someone suggested sending troops to the border. He was against the idea in general, but was for it in dealing with the Mexican army, which occasionally opens fire on the Border Patrol.

A young lawyer named Howard Foster exemplified the full meaning of the phrase "smart as a whip." His message: stop whining and sue the bastards. RICO law lets private citizens sue employers of illegal aliens, and he has done so successfully. Put the fear of trial lawyers into 'em!

Dan "The Man" Stein talked about Proposition 200 and immigrant gangs. The referendum was, predictably, nullified by judicial fiat, just like California's Prop. 187; he vowed to keep on fighting. He predicted a dire wave of crime committed by the increasing number of young, uneducated male foreigners we let into the country.

Kris Eggle's father was in the audience, and they invited him up to the podium to tell his story. He included this poignant detail: he had helped repair the fence on the border, which was worse than the worst fence on his cow-farm in Michigan. Perhaps needless to say, he got a standing ovation.

Congressman Steve King wasn't as good a speaker as Tom Tancredo (lacking that trace of Latin volatility), but he was pretty good, actually. In a flat, fast-flowing Midwestern voice, he played up the patriotism vs. multiculturalism theme, and he too debunked the "nation of immigrants" myth -- pointing out that there is no nation on Earth whose ancestors didn't come from somewhere else (the so-called "Native Americans" are descendents of immigrants who crossed the Bering Strait 12,000 years ago). Despite that, he was soft on legal immigration, and he made the silly assertion that abortion has left a "void" that immigration is filling. I guess if you come from Iowa, it might not be so obvious that the country is already full.

Bracing himself against the podium with one arm, Peter Brimelow braved his difficulty in standing upright and speaking clearly to defy those who say we "can't" stop illegal immigration. He was just reciting various things he'd written, but there's one thing I have to relay: he mentioned the Malaysian amnesty for illegal immigrants from Indonesia. The Indonesians weren't given legal status -- they were allowed to go home without being punished. (Everyone applauded this.) If they didn't go home voluntarily, they were caned. (I was one of a handful of people who applauded this. Seriously, it's a great idea. Just sending them home isn't really a punishment, and obviously it makes no sense to put them in jail. How else are we going to put the fear of Uncle Sam into them?)

Kris Kobach emphasized the importance of state and local governments for illegal immigration. If they help enforce the laws, they're an important part of the fight against it; if they subvert the laws, by providing sanctuary, in-state tuition, and other benefits to illegal aliens, they're an important part of the problem.

Steven Camarota talked about the demographics of illegal immigration. His message was that illegals generally don't come here once and for all, but are constantly going back and forth across the border. If you start deporting some, many more will just go home on their own. Also, immigration isn't an inexorable force: immigration-flows start because of U.S. government policy, and they can be stopped the same way.

Glenn Spencer gave a demonstration of a UAV with a webcam showing Mexicans swarming across the border. He emphasized the importance of making the problem visible to the American people, so they'll turn to their representatives and demand accountability for this mess. Rosemary Jenks echoed him by stressing the importance of any sort of agitation on the issue that keeps it from being buried under "study" after "study."

Finally, Bay Buchanan plugged her new enterprise, Team America. Their goal is to bring down the most egregious open-borders incumbents in Congress, whether in the primaries (if they're Republicans) or the general election (if they're Democrats) -- or at least give them a good scare. The dirty little secret of contemporary democracy is that re-election by less than 60% of the vote is a pants-crapping event for the winner. It goes to show how bipartisan gerrymandering can, and should, be upset by new issues. It keeps the duopoly from hypnotizing their constituencies with rote appeals to same tired old issues that have always brung in the vote before.

Someone mentioned that in this war, unlike previous wars, the phrase "home front" is not just a metaphor. While I'm all for going out and killing terrorists abroad, and overthrowing the regimes that support them, the home front should be our first priority; but Jorge and his administration are actively undermining our security. Compatriots, be afraid -- and angry.