CIS panel on immigration and Jews

Here is the transcript of the recent Center for Immigration Studies panel on Jews and immigration, featuring Stephen Steinlight, David Frum and Joseph Puder. Steinlight, a professional Jewish activist who became an immigration reformer because he perceived immigration as a threat to American Jewry, seems to have expanded his sympathies and analysis somewhat and now notes that immigration is a threat to America and Western civilization as well as to the Jews.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at May 28, 2004 12:47 PM | Send

I must say that I am quite shocked at responses of Mr. Frum. To be blunt, he ignored the main points of Steinlight’s opening arguement. Frum’s response was simply to say that it isn’t as bad as it seems, and then to speak on illegal immigration. David Frum is a smart fellow. Obviously, he knows that legal immigrants are a much bigger political force than illegal ones.
The Frum’s position later on is simply confused. He seems to beleieve that we can set up an immigration proceedure to allow in Coptic Christians, Maronites, Kurds (as if Sunni Kurds cannot be Islamist?), and non-practicing Muslims. Is he that out of tune with political realities?

It is a shame that there was not a liberal Jew in the panel. I would have liked to see one of those reduced to incoherence as Frum was.

Posted by: RonL on May 30, 2004 2:51 AM

I am sick to death of speaking to Europeans and all they do is deny that immigration is a problem. In Germany the majority are firmly against the US and seemingly all to willing to overlook any of the obvious manifistations of the enemy we are trying to eradicate. I am of the opinion that Europe’s days are quite numbered. Unrestricted Islamic immigration is clearly a threat to the existing Western societies and we better wake up before it is too late. The battle is not only in the mideast, but at home in America also Europe, where Islamic immigration is really an invasion and where the country is metamorphising into a demographic time bomb lusting to raise the black banner of islam over the White House.

Posted by: Anthony on May 30, 2004 4:46 AM

Anthony’s comment somehow makes me see the European disaster as I haven’t seen it before. In America, even some immigration advocates are admitting that they are concerned about Moslem immigration. But in Europe, where the Moslem immigration problem is vastly worse than it is here, Europeans are still stoutly denying it’s a problem. This suggests a true Camp of the Saints scenario. The Europeans truly are in the midst of an act of suicide. The Moslem presence and threat will continue to get worse and worse, while the Europeans continue to deny that there’s any problem, and then the Moslems will just take over.

European civilization is in the greatest crisis in its history. And what makes it the greatest crisis is that the Europeans refuse to see that the crisis even exists. So it’s not so much a crisis as a quiet act of suicide. It’s as though a man walked calmly into his study, sat down on his couch, and, with the same emotion as if he were opening a newspaper, swallowed some poison and dropped dead.

Posted by: Lawrence Auster on May 30, 2004 9:12 AM

To Ron L,

I also was amazed at Frum’s comments on the panel. He seemed to have nothing to say in relation to the topic under discussion. What was he doing there?

This raises some interesting thoughts about different kinds of Jews. Steinlight, a highly ethnocentric Jew who is intensely suspicious of white gentile Americans, nevertheless, _because_ of his very ethnocentrism, sees the Moslem threat which is a threat both to the Jews and to America as a whole. But Frum—a Jewish neocon who is not ethnocentric (at least in the Steinlight sense) but who believes in universal democracy based on the assumption that all people in the world are really the same—cannot get his mind around the palpable disaster represented by the mass presence of radical Moslems in this country. So he maunders on, saying nothing. Given his ideological commitments, he simply lacks the orientation toward reality to see what’s happening.

To expect a neocon to grasp that immigration is really a problem, would be like expecting a liberal to grasp that sexual liberation is really a problem.

Posted by: Lawrence Auster on May 30, 2004 9:43 AM

Steinlight, ethnocentric as he is, at least has some understanding that Jews and Judaism are are intrinsically connected to Western culture. Frum, a liberal (right-liberal), has reduced Western culture to a series of propositions which he assumes can be transplanted anyplace on earth.

Like the Euros described so well by Anthony above, liberal Jews have been drinking the slow poison of liberalism for decades (to expand on Mr. Auster’s metaphor). Steinlight’s description of going through intense security - the result of Islamist threats - to go and work with people whose energy is spent agitating against Evangelical Christians, some of Israel’s few allies, is particularly poignant. Liberalism is a death-cult.

Posted by: Carl on May 30, 2004 1:24 PM

Europeans are not blind to the negative effects of immigration, only their cultural leaders are.

Ipsos just polled industrial nations for the AP. I found the results interesting. It seems that a majority of Americans and Europeans realize the economic threat. Unfortunately, the results for cultural questions are less positive as a common culture is not deemed that important by most.
Oddly enough, Mexicans are the most nationalist of respondants. To see the full results, go to

Posted by: RonL on May 30, 2004 1:58 PM

From the Ipsos poll summary: “A large majority of Mexicans, 71 percent, said they think it’s better if almost everyone in a country shares the same customs and traditions.” One can conclude, after reading the full results of the poll, that Mexicans are easily the most nationalistic of the respondants by far.

I live in the East Texas area and even here the Mexican influence is strong, mirroring what is happening all over the southern US, particular the Southwest. No doubt a significant fraction, to say the least, of those Mexicans coming here (legally or, ahem, illegally) are of the opinion expressed above. This is evident in the behaviour of the Mexican (“hispanic”) community in the Southwest, even as far north and east as where I live, where Spanish has become almost a second language and the Mexican cultural influence is very strong.

All of which pales in comparison to the insane California faction which advocates abusing the liberal immigration policy of the US to build a strong Mexican demographic there and return the territory to Mexico.

In short, it is fairly obvious to most white residents living near the Mexican-US border that the vast majority of Mexicans coming here have no desire to assimilate into or contribute to the preexisting [white American] culture/society, and overwhelmingly prefer to take advantage of American prosperity and opportunity (and welfare) without giving anything back to American society at large. It is a classic case of the insular community that cares only for its own members and not at all for the host nation, except in what that host nation can do for it. Unfortunately, the community is not becoming any less insular, while it is growing at an enormous rate through sheer birth and through immigration.

If anyone was unconvinced before, the poll should be proof enough that our immigration laws ought be enforced, our borders ought be secured, along the southern border as well as on the coasts. The demographics here are, undeniably, changing rapidly, and not for the good. Mass immigration of a population that has no respect for our traditions is little better for us in the long run than mass immigration of the Islamic faction that plans our destruction.

Posted by: Jonathan Neill on May 30, 2004 2:44 PM

Kurds are rarely Islamist.

Posted by: Nitin Batra on May 30, 2004 2:58 PM

Mr. Neill is right. VFR rightly devotes a lot of attention to the cultural and physical threat Moslem immigration poses to the West. Grave as that threat is, for the United States the demographic and cultural threat from Mexico and elsewhere in Latin America is far greater. I advocate using the Army to seal the Mexican border, and not only to keep al-Qaeda out. It is just as important to keep Mexicans out.

The Ipsos poll is interesting. If I were a Mexican, I suspect I would share their nationalism. When I worked in Mexico (mid-1970s), it was a pleasant place to live even for those of modest means. Although there was widespread poverty, the country as a whole was not desperately poor. Certainly compared to black African countries, or even to Egypt, it was very comfortable. Mexico has always been very inefficient, but the pace and style of Mexican life was in many places very nice, and not only for the rich.

The dilemma for today’s Mexicans is that Mexico can no longer sustain even that modest life for most Mexicans, but there is no way Mexicans can replicate it in the United States. It does not travel. Those Mexicans who want to make the American Southwest a new Mexico want something they can never have. Instead we will be stuck with a mongrel non-culture that combines the worst features of Mexico and the United States. For Americans there should be no dilemma. It should be inconceivable that we could ever allow that to happen.

Steinlight is honestly ethnocentric, while Frum is confused. Maybe being a legal immigrant himself (Frum is a gift to us from the Great White North, and proof that the fabled brain drain does not always work to our advantage and Canada’s detriment), he cannot bring himself to see the threat legal immigration poses to American unity. Fortunately other legal immigrants (the Brimelow brothers) have managed to look beyond their own circumstances and see it. HRS

Posted by: Howard Sutherland on June 1, 2004 10:56 AM

Senator Bigot

Anti-Semitism and its offshoots are not just symptoms of jihad, they serve its cause directly.

Click here to view the entire article:

This a worthwhile read.

Posted by: Bern on June 1, 2004 11:51 AM

Having read Steinlight’s essay on this subject, I was not surprised. I do not find his selfish, ethnocentric view very appealing, but at least he makes more sense than David Frum in terms of realism. But having read Frum’s works, his evasiveness is hardly surprising either. Howard Sutherland is being overgenerous in describing him as confused; Frum is a mixture of neocon/libertarian ideologue, to the extent he has any principles. I would like to add that my own impressions of the real opinions of Jews in NYC, as opposed to “Jewish leaders,” confirms Steinlight’s view that Jews in general do not like immigration,and even if they are not strongly opposed to it, they would be happy if someone else would take the lead and stop it.

Posted by: Alan Levine on June 1, 2004 3:01 PM

Mr. Auster’s analogy gives a valuable lesson for political argument: “To expect a neocon to grasp that immigration is really a problem, would be like expecting a liberal to grasp that sexual liberation is really a problem.”

Mass immigration is the goal of immigration liberals; it can’t be conceived of as a problem. We have reached the goal so there is nothing to talk about. It is not on the table.

The same for sexual liberation for sexual liberals. It can’t be a problem because it is the goal itself. It does not exist as an issue in the world of such persons.

These goals have strong imaginative, not to say religious, appeal to those who hold them and it is difficult separating them from their cherished illusions.

Posted by: Bill on June 1, 2004 3:13 PM

I have an article on the panel at VDARE that can be viewed at

Posted by: Marcus Epstein on June 21, 2004 1:30 AM

And a good one it is, Mr. Epstein. Your VDARE article on Zora Hurston was well done also. Mr. Steinlight is quite ethnocentric, which is OK with me as long as he and his compatriots aren’t trying to destroy my people because of some twisted idea that he’s preserving his own by doing so. I do wish that he could understand the concept that there are plenty of folks among the vast sea of American Goyim who respect and support Israel’s right to exist and the right of Jews to exist as a particular people. It would be very nice for him to extend us the same courtesy. I think he’s beginning to realize the the white Anglos are not the threat to his people that he once was convinced they were. It’s a hopeful sign.

Posted by: Carl on June 21, 2004 4:16 AM
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