The Ironies of Virginia’s Growing Diversity

Midlothian’s New Grand Mart taps state’s growing diversity

 By Peter Galuszka

Suddenly immigration is popping up as a major issue in Virginia and the nation.

Virginia Beach has been dubbed a “sanctuary city” for undocumented aliens by Fox News and conservative Websites. GOP presidential hopeful Donald Trump is scarfing up poll number hikes by calling Mexicans trying to enter the U.S. illegally “rapists” and proposing an expensive new wall project to block off the southern border. Pro-Confederate flag advocates are pushing back against anti-flag moves, but they can’t escape the reality they are conjuring up  old visions of white supremacy, not their version of respectable Southern “heritage.”

So, if you’d like to look at it, here’s a piece I wrote for The Washington Post in today’s newspaper. When I visited a new, international food store called New Grand Mart in Midlothian near Richmond, I was impressed by how large it was and how many people from diverse backgrounds were there.

Looking further, I found one study noting that Virginia is drawing new groups of higher-income residents of Asian and Hispanic descent. In the suburbs, African-Americans are doing well, too.

The Center for Opportunity Urbanism ranked 52 cities as offering the best opportunities for diverse groups. One might assume D.C. and Northern Virginia would rank well, and they do. More surprising was that Richmond and Virginia Beach rank in the top 10 in such areas as income and home ownership. True, mostly black inner city Richmond has a 26 percent poverty rate but it seems to be a different story elsewhere.

Stephen Farnsworth of the University of Mary Washington says that economic prosperity and jobs that had been concentrated in the D.C. area, much of it federal, has been spread elsewhere throughout the state. It may not be a coincidence that New Grand Mart was started in Northern Virginia by Korean-Americans who undertook research. It revealed that the Richmond area was a rich diversity market waiting to be tapped. They were impressed and expanded there.

Other areas that do well in the study are Atlanta, Raleigh, N.C. and ones in Texas, which show a trend of job creation in the South and Southwest outpacing economic centers in the Northeast, Midwest and in parts of the West. Another story in today’s Post shows that there are more mostly-black classrooms in Northern cities than in the South. The piece balances out the intense reevaluation of Southern history now underway. A lot of the bad stuff seems to have ended long ago, but somehow similar attitudes remain in cities like Detroit and New York.

This progress is indeed interesting since old-fashioned American xenophobia is rearing itself again.

In Virginia, the long-term political impact will be profound as newer groups prosper. They may not be as inclined as whites to embrace Virginia’s peculiar brand of exceptionalism, such as their emotional mythology of Robert E. Lee and Thomas Jefferson. Their interest in them might be more dispassionately historical.

And, as the numbers of wealthier people from diverse backgrounds grow, they may be less willing to keep their heads down when faced with immigrant bashing. That’s what people of Hispanic descent did in 2007 and 2008 when Prince Williams County went through an ugly phase of crackdowns on supposed illegals. They could strike back with their own political campaigns.

Whether they will be blue or red remains to be seen. It’s not a given that they’d be Democratic-leaning. Farnsworth notes, however, that as more diverse people move to metropolitan suburbs, whites in more rural, lower-income places may become more reactionary out of fear. Hard-working and better-educated newcomers might be out-classing them in job hunts, so they might vote for politicians warning of a yellow or brown peril.

In any case, New Grand Mart presages a very crucial and positive trend in Virginia. It shows the irony of the hard right echo chamber peddling stories designed to inflame hatred and racism, such as the one about Virginia Beach being a “sanctuary” for illegals. In fact, the city is attracting exactly the  well-educated and hard-working newcomers of diverse backgrounds upon whom it can rest its future.

But we’re in an age of bloated billionaires with helmet hairdos and no military experience claiming that former Republican presidential candidate John McCain, a shot-down Navy pilot who spent five years in a brutal North Vietnamese prison, is not a hero. If Virginia can ignore such time-wasters and embrace diversity, it will be a better place.

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71 responses to “The Ironies of Virginia’s Growing Diversity

  1. Leave it to the mainstream media to let you spot a 20-year old trend and suddenly see news. Here’s a little tip for you: check out the candidate list for VA House of Delegates these days. Rasoul. Habeeb. Freitas. Yi. Vargas. Nguyen. Mooradian. Not your usual Northern European names. I knew Trump was out of touch but I’m a bit surprised you just started to notice that Virginia has already changed.

  2. Just making a point for the baconauts and flaggers

  3. Okay. The phrase “straw man” came to mind, but unfortunately there is Trump, so sadly the nativist/know-nothing strain in American politics will never totally die. But even Trump has to look around and see Cruz, Rubio, Jindal, Nikki Haley and hear Jeb Bush speaking fluent Spanish and realize he might be a bit out of step with today’s GOP.

    • “and realize he might be a bit out of step with today’s GOP.”

      His current position in the polls says otherwise…

      • Actually it doesn’t. He has about 18 or 19% of the primary voters. His negatives with Republican primary voters indicates his ceiling is not much higher than that.

        His negatives, with Republicans, are significantly higher than his positives.

        • He’s still the number two guy and claimed that position after asserting that Mexicans are rapists. If he has high negatives or is seen as an embarrassment it’s only because he’s saying the quiet parts loud.

          • virginiagal2

            Not according to the polling I’ve heard since he started running, including the polling results they read this morning on Morning Joe.

            He has consistently had the highest negatives of any candidate (over 50% negative with Republican primary voters) . He isn’t going to be the Republican nominee.

    • re: the herd

      sorta reminds one of the diversity in the bar scene from Star Wars!

      https://youtu.be/g6PDcBhODqo

      • I have to concur….today’s GOP is an absolute freak show.

        The past 20 years have seen 2 dominant themes in America: autonomy and the decline of the middle class.

        The GOP is simply on the wrong side of both, and it is in a much weaker position than it appears at the federal and state levels due to gerrymandering.

        Autonomy of all types has been exploding as the Cold War controls melt away…it’s not just sexuality, but expression in terms of culture, design, and thought. And there’s the old GOP….using all sorts of fanciful language to cover up their desire for a 1950s Protestant America (really a derivative of UK Victorian values). Whether it’s hip-hop (the most popular music in the world) or the gay couple down the street adopting a kid or your son becoming a vegan instead of loving that Saturday night ribeye with scotch…..the GOP seems to want to wage war on 21st century autonomy.

        As to the decline of the middle class…read this month’s Atlantic. Great, great article on the end of work. Jobs are really turning into: here today, automated in a couple of years. The only way we can keep a productive economy is to make college and community college free. So that when one’s job is consumed, one can automatically enroll in college to pick up new skills to get back in the game. You think any GOPer would support that? hahahahahahahahaha They’re so far out of this universe when it comes to these 2 trends, it’s laughable.

        And it’s not like either of these trends is going to reverse. They’re simply not with the advances in technology. It’s that simple. But instead of adapting, they’re on the verge of nominating Cuccinelli again in 2017 based on a poll out this weekend! Unbelievable!

        As I’ve posted before, I used to vote for Republicans at times. I voted for Bush in 88 and John Warner. But the Trump-Santorum-Cruz-Walker GOP is so far away from those guys, they’re not worth listening to….

        • The interesting thing is, I think some of that is a relic. If you look at surveys of young Republicans, they’re more libertarian socially and conservative fiscally.

          That’s where the potential for long term growth is, if they are able to get past the focus on social issues and take it.

          Free college is a pretty awful idea. For kids straight out of high school, college is a good option for a lot of them. For people relearning, training is a better option than college classes. And I say that as a person who has done both.

          College classes are the least flexible and most expensive way possible to deliver career retraining. Not good policy.

          • Reed Fawell 3rd

            Very interesting comments.

          • Cville Resident

            2 points:

            Perhaps you are right about younger GOP voters, but I have my doubts. Rand Paul has been preaching that Gospel for a couple of years and he isn’t doing as well as his father in the polls.

            As to college/community college….I’m a huge fan of community college career programs. I think a lot of them are pretty useful. I’d be willing to look at training programs that you mention as well. But my point remains: if we’re going to embrace what’s coming in terms of the economy, we need to have lifelong tuition free learning/productive places. In the Atlantic piece, they mention the idea of worker spaces popping up where people are learning new skills in a practical manner. Not a bad idea. But learning simply has to be a part of any governmental structure in the 21st century….We can’t treat losing a job as we did in the 20th century. We need to allow people breathing room to learn new skills without throwing them into complete financial distress. And I don’t see the current GOP supporting ANY such program (universal training, community college, college). A party obsessed with low taxes and dismantling gov’t isn’t going to reverse itself out of the blue to support retraining/new learning transitional programs.

          • Reed Fawell 3rd

            CVille Resident – more interesting comments. I appreciate the dynamic you describe. It is very telling. One major problem however is that today anything free is to often taken for granted. It too easily becomes a place to park one’s life and forget one’s purpose there in that space is to learn. Still the ease of movement in and out of learning real world skills is key as is the need for mentorship and the need to find ways around the corruption of many traditional “institutions of Learning.”.

          • not re-training Vgal… training for those not bound for 4-yr college.

            and I’m not wed to Community COllege as the only path.. I’ve specifically said community college to get an occupational certificate like nursing, medical technologist, HVAC, auto repair, etc..

            why not? We send kids into the US Military to get training.. very expensive training and then when they get out – the get more – GI benefits…

          • re: young “libertarian” GOP… I’ skeptical.. the first thing I hear from them these days is that insurance is not needed.. none.. not health, not auto, not home, .. it’s too expensive and they’re never going to need it anyhow…

            that’s the worst of youth and GOP.. faux-libertarianism.. or libertarianism-lite.. both of which are young-speak for not paying
            for things you don’t benefit from personally….after of course they get their free K-12 education.. and free roads…

          • re: ” Free college is a pretty awful idea. ” that’s what you essentially have with the “free” loan to anyone who wants one.. program.. right now.

            I would advocate making it super easy for those not bound for 4-year college to get a “free” marketable skill – through a variety of sources to include Community College”.

            and I’d tie any loan to only what there is demand for as well as grades and income..

            In other words – give “free” job skills to those who are focused on getting a job… a win-win – in terms of taxpayers , entitlements, etc.

            for those that want to set their sights higher- no free path.

            you can’t get a loan just because you want to go to college ..

            the entire purpose of loans of any kind should be based on the likelihood that the recipient is going to be an employed taxpayer who does not owe more in loans that they will earn in their job.

            We have folks with 60-80K and more who will likely not pay off their loans in – a decade or longer .. and because the loans are “forgivable” – they’re going to choose debt for a house or car – over their debt to the got.

            What in the world are we doing – when we give loans away on that basis to 4yr college folks – who then oppose free community college for others?

            I don’t get it.

            Our goal ought to be to employ as many people as we can .. and to keep as many as we can from ending up on entitlements.

            One year’s worth of entitlements is easily worth 2 years of community college.

    • We can hope that D.T. has raced ahead in the polls due to name recognition only, as the result of his TV show and real estate deals as well as his long-standing reputation as a populist a-h, and that the sooner people can attach a detailed political position with logical consequences to his name the faster they will run away. But the electoral process is not fond of yielding what I hope for.

  4. You lost me at the Washington compost and the other
    Toilet paper the Atlantic. But just for a chime in
    It happened to be that Prince William county was correct .Back in the day when illegals were not cool

    Also there are many other Korean and Vietnamese grocers
    in Northern Virginia . You just found out about this because
    Richmond is 20.years behind the Times.
    Another reason for the growth in
    Diversity ( read Diversity the myth by Peter Wood ) is that the northern cities are overrun for 60.years. by what else Democrat machines. Virginia will catch up
    It took them a while to get pizza and bagels as well. Looking around downtown close to VCU
    The economic machine of downtown you still see the ghetto
    Old store fronts being gentrified
    By the other white meat ……

    Asian American rank high in the school systems . It was not diversity. In fact they are being
    redlined at Harvard for being smart. In Fairfax county the shortfall to the school system will be 100million in two years because we love our diversity.
    So the showman hits a nerve ?

    The trend in Northern Virginia
    Is to pass NYC as the pothole capital of the nation ( as well as the most congested roads and pollution behind Los Angeles.
    All because we love our diversity
    Someone has to pay the freight
    Even MR Buffetts trains know that. Yes Virginia has appeal
    Cheap undocumented labor does well. No one ever dare protest
    The major beltway contractors
    In the right to work state. Visit any jobsite there you find everyone out of the shadows.
    Why?.because we love diversity.In a Fairfax court an illegal was charged 60.bucks for A an accident on the beltway no insurance and revoked license
    And the threat of 30.days in jail if her returns to court again in 30.days. The black man was charged 350.bucks for 10.miles over the limits to cover the cost of
    Diversity…
    Any nation or any state that
    Has two sets of laws cannot survive. Please don’t replyy with hate mail . There is already enough before me. As well as I the anti free speech TRUMP
    The Yankees have always given
    Richmond a rash. This time
    They decided to send you sandpaper . Have a niceday Mr. Botchaggaloop… A little Abbott and Costello for the clowns posts

  5. you know – the ability of an obnoxious blowhard like Trump to win the favor of a significant part of the GOP base is nothing short of breathtaking.

    It’s a reflection of the GOP base. .. that the rest of the GOP candidates are vying for.

    Even after his McCain remarks .. he still has a substantial number of supporters..

    How many of the GOP candidates came out initially to condemn Trumps statements about immigration?

    the “harm” he does – is self-inflicted … if the rest of the GOP cannot forthrightly stand apart from Trump instead of letting Trump – co-opt their base.

    Trump is done as a viable candidate but it’ll be interesting to see how his views of the other candidates are received by those who supported him, i.e. will his opinion still have import?

    • I don’t think Trump is all that representative of the Republican base, given that every poll I’ve seen shows his negatives higher than his positives with Republican voters.

      If I’m trying to suss out where those votes are coming from, I do think that there are a number of people concerned about immigration levels, polls show a very low level of support for increasing levels of immigration, and practically every other politician of either party is pushing for increasing immigration levels, some enormously.

      Cruz, for example, wants to quintuple H1B, despite increasing evidence that the program at current levels is being abused to replace US workers with less expensive temporary workers. Rubio just wants to triple it.

      The particular area that’s problematic are staffing companies, many headquartered in India, that hire the majority of H1B’s. Their entire business model is to replace existing US workers. Most H1B’s are going to these staffing firms, not directly to employers. They are not filling jobs where the skills were unavailable – they are literally taking the jobs of people already here, some of whom have to train them.

      Based on comments I’ve seen over at Computerworld, my guess is that he is picking up older nativists, plus people registering a protest against their belief that their interests are being ignored. The former and the latter don’t have the same concerns. The former is concerned that the present doesn’t look like the past. The latter is concerned about staying employed at a decent wage.

      I don’t think Trump is helpful on this conversation – he’s hurtful, he’s trying to get a rise out of people, and he’s not helping his party or the conversation in general. He’s creating hate and divisiveness that make it impossible to talk about the subject.

      However, one thing earlier in the season struck me – a comment by one of the candidates (not sure, think it was Scott Walker) that immigration levels should be set at levels that benefit current US workers and citizens. That was decried as anti-immigrant.

      It does seem self-evident that any country sets its immigration levels to benefit those already here. If the acceptable range of discussion has shifted to where that’s considered anti-immigrant, maybe that’s why you’re getting a backlash. People who fear for their jobs are going to look for someone who helps their interests, no matter how gross and tacky.

      I don’t support Trump – yuck – he is on a list of people where I would rather not vote rather than vote for – but I also don’t think immigration levels should be the third rail. Most people I’ve heard worried about H1B are not opposed to immigration, they’re concerned that the level is being raised exponentially, primarily to force down wages, and that claims of an IT labor shortage are not supported by evidence but are being played up precisely so wages can be forced down.

      FWIW. I think he has zero chance of being the Republican nominee, and most Republicans I know are embarrassed by him.

      • I agree with much of what you say.

        Regarding Trump – he is pure power hungry publicity seeking narcissistic tin horn demagogue. As such he is reminiscent of Mussolini and Columbia’s Chavez – the charismatic bottom feeders who are fascists riding in disguise as populists.

        These are the kind who ruin their country, their opponents, and their supporters, all at the same time. They fed off of fear, confusion, alienation of the people and their sense of dis-empowerment and anger at failing political systems.

        So do NOT underestimate Trump. You do not make 10+ $billion bucks being stupid, lazy, incompetent or ineffectual. Trump is very smart, very tough, and totally ruthless. HE IS ALSO A QUICK LEARNER. AND HE DOES NOT GIVE UP AND GO HOME EASILY.

        Unfortunately our country is reaching a point of social, cultural and civil failure. We well could be at a point where demagogic despots can thrive – like in Italy, Germany, Japan, and Russia on the one hand and England, France and almost the US on the other, led the world after WWI into the disaster of WWII.

      • On the matter of immigration, I believe both democrats and Republicans are in favor of lawful immigration, and that most Americans are not in favor of illegal immigration, particularly when it is used for political or financial advantage, as is now being done by Democratic and Republican leaders.

        Too many Republicans leaders have shown great cowardliness on this issue. They have not been straight with the American people on the issue.

        The Democrats leaders of all strips are equally to blame for using emigration as a political weapon, demagog the issue so as to keep it alive without solution in order buy votes in each and every election. Here the Democrats use traditional Al Sharpton tactics, keeping people in their place without effective solutions for their private political power.

        • So there is more than a little truth is what Trump says here, and that element of truth that he speaks amid all his demogoging of the issue, is what to many others Republican and Democrat have been afraid to say.

          So as Andrew says so wisely below ““he who sows the wind will reap the whirlwind.” We are all to blame.

  6. Larry, great video. My favorite scene in the movie.

    On Trump, it may be instructive of my experience when I was working for BusinessWeek in the 19080s and 1990s. The editor-in-chief had a standing rule that there had better be a damned good reason to put Donald Trump in the magazine. He was fearful that Trump’s extraordinarily aggressive PR machine would make it “Trump Week.” Plus, the reality was that Trump didn’t really have all that much significance when it came to business and the economy at large. He built some flashy and tasteless apartment towers in big cities. He was in and out of Atlantic City and other gambling places. But when it came to GDP, he was irrelevant.

    Also, I didn’t mean to make the point of this blog point Trump. I was hoping there’d be more discussion on the significance of having better-educated and wealthier non-whites spreading their influence around the state instead of just NOVA. Yeah, sure, it’s been a 20-year old trend, but it is picking up speed and is too important to simply be dismissed.

    • re: better educated non-whites…

      well.. they’re taking over the 7-11s and they’re taking over some medical professions like endocrinology … and high tech companies like Google and other start-ups are like a who’s who of foreign surnames.

      it so routine now – when I read about some new leading-edge technology that I expect to see foreign surnames in the write-up.

      we white guys and girls have become lazy butts… easily distracted by ideological idiocy and worse while others are focused on opportunity.

  7. Nobody dismissed it. The leaders in both parties, and the state’s business leaders, all see it and are all trying to respond to it. Anyone who really understands the history of this country knows that it is a history of various waves of immigration. My Irish ancestors were about as welcome as today’s newcomers. It is not too hard to understand why some of the once dominant northern Europeans are a bit unhappy about the trend lines, but there they are.

  8. The Communist playwright, Bertolt Brecht, wrote these lines after the East German revolt of 1963 that are applicable to the feelings of Liberals in America today:
    “After the uprising of the 17th of June
    The Secretary of the Writers Union
    Had leaflets distributed in the Stalinallee
    Stating that the people
    Had forfeited the confidence of the government
    And could win it back only
    By redoubled efforts.

    “Would it not be easier
    In that case for the government
    To dissolve the people
    And elect another?”

    We are so unworthy of your “enlightenment,” Peter et al! So, protecting our borders is “ugly,” eh? Have you taken the locks off your home and car?

  9. Huh? I am not worried about locks. My neighbot is from colombia and he fas a phd in psychology–works im mental health. Want his phone number?

  10. I think that the point of endless immigration is that American prosperity is built upon turning the country into a huge “Ponzi Scheme.” The working class is allowed to advance upward so long as there is a constant inflow of newcomers. When the country had 30, 50, or 100 million people or so, such a course probably wasn’t overly harmful. At 310 or 320 million people today, continuing such a strategy will be disasterous on every count I can imagine. It also reminds me of the French High Command, whom Barbara Tuchman described as being enthralled, before the First World War, to the offensive posture, no matter the situation. Changed times demand different strategies. But, as was said of the Bourbons, “they forgot nothing and learned nothing.” As is written elsewhere, in Scripture, “he who sows the wind will reap the whirlwind.” In the meantime, some people will get very rich on this short-sighted strategy of collosal debt, construction, and “churn.” The rest of us will suffer. I am glad that Donald Trump, for all of his many shortcomings, a few which have already been cited by correspondents here, is stirring up the Liberals! In this case, he has a point about America as a dumping ground for Mexico’s population, law-abiding and criminal. One of my favorite sayings is, “even a broken clock is right twice a day.”

    • “One of my favorite sayings is, “even a broken clock is right twice a day.”

      Yes, and Hitler was right far more than twice, and kept the trains running on time too, ultimately straight to the gas chambers and his country’s utter destruction along with Europe from English Channel to the gates of Moscow.

      • Dear Reed,

        My point is not that one should “vote for a broken clock,” so to speak, but the fact of its “brokeness” does not necessarily negate every statment that person makes. In discussions with heretics, the Church Fathers routinely praised their opponents true statements, while castigating their errors. In any case, I see no gas chambers, etc, in the event of a Trump victory. Both parties’ establishments would join together to sink whatever “program” he might offer. I think the “resort to Hitler” is one too readily taken in our day. It is our culture’s “political tourette’s” reflex. It is our equivalent of “crying wolf.” I had favored Santorum, but he has, or likely will, drop out. Phyllis Schlafly dealt accurately with the GOP establishment and its essentially fraudulent nature as an “opposition,” in her 1964 classic, _A Choice, Not an Echo_, and Ann Coulter is doing the same in our day. That leopard has not changed its spots. The GOP is a trap for conservatives to waste their hopes and energy in useless maneuvers.

        • Yes, and actually I was agreeing with your point about the worst of men often having much useful to say, and that they indeed can be farsighted truth tellers in many cases where more virtuous men lack the foresight to see, or the courage to express what they see, or lack the energy and commitment to step forward and take an active stand. Hence, as Mill said, all men need to be listened to and have something important to say that can improve the lot of all people. Hence the need for Liberty.

          Regarding Trump, much of what he says has more than a little truth in it, and indeed often it has much truth in it, take his comments on the VA hospitals as one example. Plus I have little doubt that he would fix that horrible and inexcusable problem if he were President.

          My problem with Trump is that I see no evidence that he can run our government in any fashion other than by coercion and force. I find his comments about those who disagree with him and/or simply stand in his way of his getting what he wants – to be president – to show such disrespect for other people is nothing less than appalling.

          If the man conducts himself like he is doing now, running for President, try to imagine what he might do to those standing in his way when he has the power of the office of the President of the United States. To me this is frightening. And it is based on my long reading of history, that such a possibility is not only NOT far-fetched but quite possible given the current state of our nation.

          And while I am sorry about the Fascist comparison where some 60 to 80 million people died in 6 years, please recall that it occurred because all the good and decent people slept and or avoided obvious truths and facts and or lived in a dream world for more than decades starting with Woodrow Wilson, and I see it happening all over again in our time.

          Remember: fascism and totalitarianism never sleep but eagerly wait for the right time for its own resurrection in the hearts of men who yearn for power. This is because, when seeing the opportunity to grab such power, such men will stop at nothing to achieve it .

          • Andrew Roesell

            Dear Reed,

            I am not having trouble sleeping at night because of Donald Trump. My insomnia is due in large measure to the actions of the “respectable” parties that countenance barbarism, degradation, and the ridicule of the Christian faith, and goad us into endless wars, while disregarding the Constitution and refusing to enforce duly passed laws and defend our own borders, and encouraging the demonization of America’s white majority. If one wants to find the greatest threats to our civilization, and our nation, we need not look to Moscow or Beijing, but no further than across the Potomac and at the interests that put them there. That Trump is seen by some as a “savior” is due to the despair that comes from this realization. Putin cannot accomplish these things our own political establishment has so implacably determined, and dissent from which it punishes with boycotts and media character-assassination, all ever so “lawful.” Solzhenitsyn described portions of this situation well in his Harvard address in the 1970s.

          • Cville Resident

            While I doubt we agree on a lot of political subjects. I think this is a very good post.

            I think both parties are in the pockets of elite interests (the 1%, large corporations, gov’t employees, universities). There are a lot of issues out there that animate a lot of non-elite members of society. Yet the parties are so beholden to their contributors and backers that both are silent on a lot of these issues.

            Thus, the appeal of a Trump. A guy willing to crack some eggs to make an omelette. It sounds good in theory (nobody does anything, but this guy will “get things done”) but history doesn’t look kindly on such figures.

          • Reed Fawell 3rd

            Andrew and Cville Resident –

            Both of you raise excellent points that deepen the conversation.

            One might say that we as a nation are lucky to have constituencies that feel strongly one way or the other, or alternatively are torn between, various things they hear, see, and feel in Trumps message and his manner of delivering it. This is not all bad. In fact there is much good to be found in it. For many of such folks care deeply about their country, their families, their religions, their culture, their traditions, and their way of life, and rightly feel those things are being unjustly taken away from them by an uncaring elitist government that does not look after America’s interests, including the interest of half or more than half of the nation’s people.

            And these people have every right to be highly concerned and motivated by what is happening all around them. Witness the current term of Supreme Court decisions as one of many examples. The reach and impact of these decisions are unprecedented in American jurisprudence save only for Dred Scott.

            It it good to at long last feel the possible wake up a substantial portion of our heretofore sleeping nation. For those citizens asleep will otherwise wake up to find that their lunch has been eaten.

            With regard to merit of this view note the alternative found at this insightful article populations lacking such public spirit and hope:

            http://thefederalist.com/2015/07/20/europe-is-partying-like-its-1939

  11. E-verify is how you deal with the illegal immigration problem but guess who does not like that idea?

    Canada has almost zero problems with immigration because they will rip any business a new butt if they get caught hiring undocumented labor.

    re: TRump and who his base is… it’s lefties? really? bhahahahhahhah

    let’s see Trump run as a 3rd party and see who freaks out!

  12. Sure, but many of the English who populated the American colonies were not the type who had risen to the top back at home. Some were violent criminals or were greatly in debt.

    • And as long as they vote Democrat, then they’re just “peachy.” I hold no brief for the GOP, but that is the basic motivation of the Democrats in supporting immigration: Power and more clients for the bureaucracies they represent (public schools and universities), etc. If some innocent American citizens get clawed along the way, than I suppose that’s just the price of “progress,” i.e. endless growth, congestion, ugliness, and debt. In order for there to be a conspiracy of silence, both parties must consent to it. And they do.

      • A minor point: There is NO ‘Democrat’ party. There is a ‘Democratic’ party. The first step in winning people over is to know their name. If you distort it you simply shut them off.

  13. Really don’t see the connection between a professional blowhard like Trump and “Liberty” and the need for “good and decent” people to stand up against rising totalitarianism that Trump, however off-putting, is warning is about.

    What’s next? Obama staging coups in Texas and Utah?

    And remember, when reminding us all about what “totalitarianism” really is, I’m probably the only person on this blog site who has actually lived and worked in a totalitarian country. Sorry but it is true and I don’t need the reminder.

  14. Cut out the euphemisms. In plain language “growing diversity” means a decreasing percentage of whites, displaced by Third World non-whites. And “undocumented alien” means an illegal alien.

    Look at the police department mug shots of any city. Trump drew attention to the undeniable fact that immigrants, which today means Third World immigrants, per capita commit far more violent crimes than natives.

    That doesn’t mean all Third World immigrants are criminals, but compute the percentages. Unrestricted immigration means more violent crime per capita. Only pathological altruism can justify this.

    I welcome Trump’s intemperate language, which Bacon’s Rebellion misrepresents. If you want the details backing up Trump read Ann Coulter’s Adios, America or Colin Flaherty’s White Girl Bleed a Lot – if you have a strong stomach – and Google “immigrant mass murder.”

    Bacon’s Rebellion says to the victims, look at all the nice Korean stores!

    Crime is not the main issue. The main issue is culture and race. Do you want to be surrounded and outnumbered by Koreans, Haitians, Vietnamese, Nigerians, Guatemalans … from the bottomless reservoir of the Third World? Immigration hustlers such as Tim Wise, mentioned elsewhere on BR, welcome the prospect because they want more socialist voters.

    Trump is popular because Americans see that they’re losing their country and yearn for someone to speak for them.

  15. The logical conclusion of all this is: If America is not a culture, and indeed is hostile to our own, nor a place where the rule of law is respected, is corrupt and pervaded with public lies, then, like those poor denizens of the Soviet Union, why bother staying at all, if this is the way, with apologies to T.S. Eliot, “it all ends, not with a bang,” but with a sneer? I love my country but I hate what Cultural Marxism, in cahoots with global Capitalism, has done to it. Only a Christian sense of hope and providence makes me firm to want to stay and, God willing, wrest it back from those who hate it.

  16. There is a terrific conversation going on here.

    • It is interesting. But that’s Bacon’s Rebellion. A conversation among people with interesting points to make. Thank God we don’t have the mindless idiocy of Bearing Drift, BlueVirginia, The Bull Elephant, etc.

      On another note, perhaps Mr. Bacon will let me review a book on this site. It has a lot of interesting points to make about topics that appear regularly on this site. Fukuyama’s “The Origins of Political Order” is great.

      But the overall premise of Fukuyama’s book is that political systems decline when they fell to adapt to the needs of the citizenry. Whether you’re on the left or right, it’s not hard to see that liberal democracy in the U.S. and West is having a very difficult time dealing with the problems of today’s world. The question is: Can liberal democracy adapt or will it also “end without a band” as Roesell posits. Time will tell.

      • CvilleR – do you think Conservatives have “adapted to the needs of citizenry”

        Can you name some recent accomplishments that demonstrate their successes?

        • I don’t think either party has to be candid. The D’s are a little more in tune with the times (the ACA, for all of its faults, does seem to at least be a nod in the right direction for adapting health care to the 21st century…slowly eking away from an employer based system, trying to make people pay for health care, stop making ERs this nation’s primary care office, etc.), but not by much.

          I honestly think that either Clinton or Bush will basically do what the elites want. The only thing that matters in such a contest is your view on social issues via Supreme Court appointments. Economic and foreign policy? I seriously doubt there’s 5 degrees of difference in how either would perform.

  17. Sounds quite enlightening, indeed Fukuyama like.

  18. Larry iam sure jim would ket you post a book review. But if not send it to me and i will post it.

  19. Who cares what the pompous azzed GOP and their polls think about Trump? It’s the independents totally fed up with both parties you need to be worrying about.

    Look at what both parties said about Jim Webb when he ran for VA Senator.

    Trump has been pushing the right buttons for a lot of fed up people. And in states like Virginia, ANYBODY can vote in the primary.

  20. so you good with Trump running 3rd party?

  21. Why would he go third party if he’s leading the polls? What Im saying is that there are a whole lot of experts working overtime to get him off the platform. And so far he doesn’t seem to be going anywhere but up. These experts are seriously underestimating how ticked off many voters are with status quo establishment candidates.

    Bush’s numbers are sinking into the realm of an also ran.

  22. To understand what is happening in America today, consider this:

    When Thucydides spoke of the Golden Age of Athens he summarized some of its great strengths, often using the words of Pericles. Here is a very brief and highly paraphrased summary of their conclusions:

    Our ancestors (some of whom died in our defense, and who dwelt in our country without break from generation to generation) handed Athens to us free and vibrant by reason of their public and private spirit and energy that built Athens and defended her as well by their valor. So we now possess what they spared no pains to be able to bequeath us, a mother country that can be furnished by us with everything that enables her to depend on her own resources whether for war or peace. And its fruits are beyond measure, for example:

    Our constitution does not copy those of our neighbors but rather it is the pattern they imitate. Its administration favors the many of us instead of the few. That is why it is called a democracy.

    And, if we look to our laws, they afford equal justice to all in both our public and private affairs. Hence, our advancement in our country’s public life falls to the reputation we earn for capacity. Class distinction is not allowed to interfere with our merit. Nor does poverty bar the way.

    And, if a man is able to serve the state, he is not hindered by the obscurity of his condition, and the freedom he enjoys in public life extends to his private life. Thus, far from exercising a jealous surveillance over one another, we do not feel called upon to be angry with our neighbor for his doing what he likes, or even to indulge in those injurious looks which cannot fail to be offensive although they inflict no real harm.

    But all this ease in our private relations does not make us lawless as citizens. We are constrained by our laws and equally by our own private sense of disgrace. And to assure this we refresh ourselves often from business and do so with games. And we also throw our city open to the world, and never by alien act do we exclude foreigners from the opportunity of learning or observing here in Athens, although we know full well that the eyes of our enemy may occasionally profit from our liberality.

    And we trust less in system and policy than to the native spirit of our citizens, and we do so knowing full well that the education chosen by our rivals goes from their cradle to old age by painful discipline that seeks exclusively after manliness.

    Rather, instead, here in Athens, we live exactly as we please and yet we are just as ready to encounter every legitimate danger as fearlessly and competently as our rivals, indeed more competently by reason of our liberality and democracy, giving us freedom and much else to lose. So Athenians do not allow their wealth to unnerve their spirit or their poverty to shrink them from danger. Instead we inherent the traditions of our ancestors who resolved not to lose Athens but to build her, and hence so nobly fought and died for her with the result that we, as their survivors, are also ready to suffer as they did in her cause.

    But this is not all. We cultivate refinement without extravagance and knowledge without effeminacy. Wealth we employ more for use than for show. And we place the real disgrace of poverty not in owning to the fact, but in our declining the struggle against it, so as to transcend it.

    Because of all this, the admiration of the present and succeeding ages will be ours since we have not left our power without witness. Instead we have shown it with mighty proofs. Far from needing a Homer for our eulogist, we have forced every sea and land to be the highway of our daring, whether for evil or good, we have left imperishable monuments behind us.

    More than three centuries of hard and history making innovative work brought Athens to the peak of its power, and culture, and system of free governance by its citizens in a combination that changed the history of the world, the human race, and the very definition of civilization still strong and vibrant to this day some 2500 years later.

    —-

    Still, despite all of its strengths, the fall of Athens was rapid.

    The rot and corruption that destroyed Athens was put on steroids by reckless war and spread beyond repair with the space of decades. Here is how Thucydides describes the roots of that corruption and how it ruined the city state of Athens.

    “Words had to change their ordinary meaning and to take that which was now given them. Reckless audacity came to be considered the courage of a loyal supporter; prudent hesitation, specious cowardice, moderation was held to be a cloak for unmanliness; inability to see all sides of the question and incapacity to act on any of them. Frantic violence became the attribute of manliness; cautious plotting a justifiable means of self-defense. The advocate of extreme measures was always trustworthy; his opponent a man to be suspected. To succeed in a plot was to have a shrew head, to divine the plot was shrewder, but to try to provide against having to do either was to break up your party and to be afraid of your adversaries … even blood became weaker than party, from the superior readiness of those united by (party) to dare everything without reserve (for the party) sought not the blessings derived from established institutions but were formed by ambition to overthrow them; and the confidence of the members in each other rested less on religious sanction than upon complicity of crime. The fair proposals of an adversary were met with jealous precautions by the stronger of the two, and not with generous confidence. Revenge was held of more account than self-preservation. Oaths of reconciliation, being only offered on either side to meet an immediate difficulty, only held good so long as no other weapon was at hand; but when the opportunity arose, he who first ventured to seize it and to take his enemy off his guard, thought this perfidious vengeance sweeter than an open one since, considerations apart, success by treachery won him the prize for superior intelligence … the cause of these evils being the lust for power arising from greed and ambition; and from these passions proceeded the violence of parties once engaged in contention (but each contender always disguised his true intentions in the false name of the public good as they sought prizes for themselves alone, and stopped at nothing in their struggles for ascendancy and engaged in direct excesses).

    Thus religion was in honor with neither party; but the use of fair phases to arrive at guilty ends was in high reputation. Meanwhile the moderate part of the citizens perished between the two, either for not joining in the quarrel, or because envy would not suffer them to escape. Thus every form of iniquity took root in the Hellenic countries by reason of the troubles.”

    (This is Adapted and Edited version of The Landmark Thucydides earlier edited by Robert B. Strassler from Richard Crawley’s original translation.)

    Perhaps more that any other man, the orator, statesman, and general ALCIBIADES brought ruin to Athens. The despicable personal qualities and character of ALCIBIADES has come to forever represent the classic lesson on the personality type that so often claws its way to power and destroys not only a highly successful democracy but also an entire people and culture, no matter how admirable both may be before their ruin.

  23. Dear Reed,

    Thanks for the Pericles and Thucydides extracts. Learning from other people’s experience, good and bad, is a lot cheaper than repeating the bad and to failing to emulate the good. Plato’s discussion of aristocracy, oligarchy, democracy, and tyranny in book VIII of _The Republic_ also is instructive. Here is a link to a summary for those interested: http://www.sparknotes.com/philosophy/republic/section8.rhtml Best of all is to actually read the text, but the summary is a good place to start if you haven’t already.

  24. Here is an excerpt to chapter viii: http://classics.mit.edu/Plato/republic.9.viii.html

    “Neither does he receive or let pass into the fortress any true word of advice; if any one says to him that some pleasures are the satisfactions of good and noble desires, and others of evil desires, and that he ought to use and honour some and chastise and master the others –whenever this is repeated to him he shakes his head and says that they are all alike, and that one is as good as another.

    Yes, he said; that is the way with him.
    Yes, I said, he lives from day to day indulging the appetite of the hour; and sometimes he is lapped in drink and strains of the flute; then he becomes a water-drinker, and tries to get thin; then he takes a turn at gymnastics; sometimes idling and neglecting everything, then once more living the life of a philosopher; often he-is busy with politics, and starts to his feet and says and does whatever comes into his head; and, if he is emulous of any one who is a warrior, off he is in that direction, or of men of business, once more in that. His life has neither law nor order; and this distracted existence he terms joy and bliss and freedom; and so he goes on.

    Yes, he replied, he is all liberty and equality.
    Yes, I said; his life is motley and manifold and an epitome of the lives of many; –he answers to the State which we described as fair and spangled. And many a man and many a woman will take him for their pattern, and many a constitution and many an example of manners is contained in him.

    Just so.
    Let him then be set over against democracy; he may truly be called the democratic man.

    Let that be his place, he said.
    Last of all comes the most beautiful of all, man and State alike, tyranny and the tyrant; these we have now to consider.

    Quite true, he said.
    Say then, my friend, in what manner does tyranny arise? –that it has a democratic origin is evident.

    Clearly.
    And does not tyranny spring from democracy in the same manner as democracy from oligarchy –I mean, after a sort?

    How?
    The good which oligarchy proposed to itself and the means by which it was maintained was excess of wealth –am I not right?

    Yes.
    And the insatiable desire of wealth and the neglect of all other things for the sake of money-getting was also the ruin of oligarchy?

    True.
    And democracy has her own good, of which the insatiable desire brings her to dissolution?

    What good?
    Freedom, I replied; which, as they tell you in a democracy, is the glory of the State –and that therefore in a democracy alone will the freeman of nature deign to dwell.

    Yes; the saying is in everybody’s mouth.
    I was going to observe, that the insatiable desire of this and the neglect of other things introduces the change in democracy, which occasions a demand for tyranny.

    How so?
    When a democracy which is thirsting for freedom has evil cupbearers presiding over the feast, and has drunk too deeply of the strong wine of freedom, then, unless her rulers are very amenable and give a plentiful draught, she calls them to account and punishes them, and says that they are cursed oligarchs.

    Yes, he replied, a very common occurrence.
    Yes, I said; and loyal citizens are insultingly termed by her slaves who hug their chains and men of naught; she would have subjects who are like rulers, and rulers who are like subjects: these are men after her own heart, whom she praises and honours both in private and public. Now, in such a State, can liberty have any limit?

    Certainly not.
    By degrees the anarchy finds a way into private houses, and ends by getting among the animals and infecting them.

    How do you mean?
    I mean that the father grows accustomed to descend to the level of his sons and to fear them, and the son is on a level with his father, he having no respect or reverence for either of his parents; and this is his freedom, and metic is equal with the citizen and the citizen with the metic, and the stranger is quite as good as either.

    Yes, he said, that is the way.
    And these are not the only evils, I said –there are several lesser ones: In such a state of society the master fears and flatters his scholars, and the scholars despise their masters and tutors; young and old are all alike; and the young man is on a level with the old, and is ready to compete with him in word or deed; and old men condescend to the young and are full of pleasantry and gaiety; they are loth to be thought morose and authoritative, and therefore they adopt the manners of the young.

    Quite true, he said.
    The last extreme of popular liberty is when the slave bought with money, whether male or female, is just as free as his or her purchaser; nor must I forget to tell of the liberty and equality of the two sexes in relation to each other.

    Why not, as Aeschylus says, utter the word which rises to our lips?
    That is what I am doing, I replied; and I must add that no one who does not know would believe, how much greater is the liberty which the animals who are under the dominion of man have in a democracy than in any other State: for truly, the she-dogs, as the proverb says, are as good as their she-mistresses, and the horses and asses have a way of marching along with all the rights and dignities of freemen; and they will run at anybody who comes in their way if he does not leave the road clear for them: and all things are just ready to burst with liberty.

    When I take a country walk, he said, I often experience what you describe. You and I have dreamed the same thing.

    And above all, I said, and as the result of all, see how sensitive the citizens become; they chafe impatiently at the least touch of authority and at length, as you know, they cease to care even for the laws, written or unwritten; they will have no one over them.

    Yes, he said, I know it too well.
    Such, my friend, I said, is the fair and glorious beginning out of which springs tyranny.

    Glorious indeed, he said. But what is the next step?
    The ruin of oligarchy is the ruin of democracy; the same disease magnified and intensified by liberty overmasters democracy –the truth being that the excessive increase of anything often causes a reaction in the opposite direction; and this is the case not only in the seasons and in vegetable and animal life, but above all in forms of government.

    True.
    The excess of liberty, whether in States or individuals, seems only to pass into excess of slavery.

    Yes, the natural order.
    And so tyranny naturally arises out of democracy, and the most aggravated form of tyranny and slavery out of the most extreme form of liberty?

    As we might expect.
    That, however, was not, as I believe, your question-you rather desired to know what is that disorder which is generated alike in oligarchy and democracy, and is the ruin of both?”

  25. Yes indeed, Plato the wise Prophet!

  26. He was lapped in drink at Morton’s Steakhouse and the strains of the flute at Off the Hookah, with the giant electric utility picking up the bill as if it were taffeta tossed from an Athenean balcony.

    Liberty? Slavery? No matter what the future held, he was secure in the knowledge that his power bills would be within the certain price range that the gods living in their lofty steel and glass tower in their tremendous wisdom had set.

    His only fear, clawing at him during a full REM sleep, was that of stranded assets pushing the power gods asunder and ending the flow of cash, PAC money, cocktails, Redskins seats and that commanding view of the Masters in its azalea-red splendor.

    Only then did he have a vision of true hell on earth.

  27. Have you seen the Monty Python skit of the German vs. Greek philosophers? ;-)< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cl7Zg8P0z3M

  28. Andrew,
    Great stuff! Thanks.

  29. Hysterical! And what a great collection of hysterics on that site.

  30. Well, after all the chuckles, maybe Peter and I should sing “Kumbaya”?!? ;-)<

  31. The answer, my friend, is blowing in the wind.

  32. Dig it, man, I just can’t “get no satisfaction” here! ;-)< / ;-(<

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