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Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Immigrant Nation

Jack Kemp:

Anti-immigration politicians and candidates fail to realize a few fundamental truths, the most important of which is that we are an immigrant country. George Washington famously quipped in 1788 that, "I had always hoped that this land might become a safe and agreeable asylum to the virtuous and persecuted part of mankind, to whatever nation they might belong."

Immigrants coming to America do so because the United States is still the city on a shining hill for the poor and persecuted.

Union Shakedown

Linda Chavez:

Unions represent the largest source of unregulated--in some cases, illegal-- money in politics today. Not only did unions contribute $90.1 million directly to the Democrats in 2000, they also spent $46 million in a grassroots’ effort to mobilize Democratic voters, registered 2.3 million new union household voters, made 8 million phone calls and distributed $14 million leaflets in the workplace, but they also spent untold millions for paid union staff to work directly in Democratic campaigns.

Most of this money comes directly out of the dues of union members—usually without their permission or even knowledge. Some estimates put the amount unions spend each election cycle in the range of $500-800 million. It’s almost impossible to know the exact figure because unions do not have to disclose in any detail how they spend their money (unlike publicly traded corporations, which have to release detailed financial statements and abide by strict auditing rules). What’s more, most unions don’t pay taxes on that portion of their dues spent on politics, even though they are required by law to do so. The National Education Association, the nation’s largest and one of the wealthiest (almost $350 million in revenues in 2002), claims it spends zero on politics, yet the NEA maintains a staff of 1,800 political operatives, more than the combined staff of the Democratic and Republican National Committees combined.

This year, the unions will spend even more than they did in 2000. The AFL-CIO has committed some $44 million to a “beat Bush” effort. One New York City local of the Service Employees International Union has pledged $35 million to defeating the president—not one penny of which will be spent in New York, where the union’s members live and work, because New York is safely in Kerry’s column.

Much of the reason for this increased political activism among the unions has to do with the changing composition of the labor movement itself. While unions have been losing members overall over the last five decades (from a high of more than one third of all workers in the mid-1950s to only about 13 percent today), public employee union membership is sharply on the rise. Less than 10 percent of workers in the private sector belong to unions, but almost 40 percent of government workers do. The shift to government workers in the unions has also accelerated the unions’ leftward lurch, especially under the leadership of AFL-CIO president John Sweeney, who proudly proclaims his membership in the Democratic Socialists of America. Under Sweeney, the AFL-CIO has largely abandoned its social conservatism and staunch pro-defense views.

There's more! Read the whole interview.

Lowry Contreras on Tancredo & Co.

The man does not pull any punches:

Despite all the whining, whimpering, ultra-profound ignorance and hatred of Mexicans by renegade and political Luddite-like Republicans led by gadfly Colorado Congressman Tom Tancredo, Republican voters have spoken again and flushed him and his followers down the political toilet.

Candidates Not Addressing Issues

From the Miami Herald:

A majority of U.S. Hispanics believe that political candidates are not talking about issues important to the Latino community, according to a poll released Sunday.

Monday, June 28, 2004

Kerry Is No Democrat

Pejman Yousefzadeh of TechCentralStation doesn't think that John Kerry is interested in promoting democracy around the world, and especially in Cuba:

The New York Times's David Brooks points to an alarming lack of concern on the part of Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry for the cause of democracy and human rights in Cuba. In discussing whether he would support the Varela Project, which is designed to bring about peaceful democratic reform in Cuba, Kerry remarked that he found the Project "counterproductive." Why? Because the Project "has gotten a lot of people in trouble . . . and it brought down the hammer" of the Castro regime on dissidents who are now being persecuted as a result of their participation in the Project.

Gay Marriage

This is a new topic for this blog, and this is likely to be the only post on the subject:

Twelve Hispanic members of Congress members [sic] have signed a letter to President Bush expressing their strong opposition to the Federal Marriage Amendment as well as "any other proposed amendments which attempt to achieve the same discriminatory objective." The letter also urges the president to reconsider his support of the discriminatory amendment initiative. "The Constitution and its subsequent amendments were designed to protect and expand individual liberties," the statement reads.

I don't necessarily agree with him, but P.J. O'Rourke had the best and funniest line on this issue (he's usually right on things):

I am a little to the right of Rush Limbaugh. I'm so conservative that I approve of San Francisco City Hall marriages, adoption by same-sex couples, and New Hampshire's recently ordained Episcopal bishop. Gays want to get married, have children, and go to church. Next they'll be advocating school vouchers, boycotting HBO, and voting Republican.

McCain on Immigration

From KPHO in Phoenix, Arizona:

The federal government has failed to address illegal immigration in the Southwest and needs to wake up, Sen. John McCain told Hispanic leaders Saturday.

"It is in our national interest to bring the 8 to 12 million undocumented immigrants out of the shadows and allow them an opportunity to become citizens of this great nation," McCain said at the annual conference of the National Council of La Raza.

Richardson: Latino Vote Decisive

It sounds to me like the Governor is trying to position himself to capture the VP nod:

The Democratic governor of New Mexico, Bill Richardson, said here Thursday that Hispanics could make the difference in the November elections and predicted that the candidate who wins Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, Florida and his own southwestern state will end up in the White House.

More...

Friday, June 25, 2004

Go West Young Man!

Republicans had better get their act together:

Job losses and a growing Hispanic population have put Western states back in play in the presidential race, Kerry said Monday.

During his first campaign visit to Colorado, the Democratic candidate said a number of states, including Nevada and Arizona, are now competitive because voters are upset over a lack of jobs, health care, education and immigration policies.

The good news for the GOP is that the economy is improving and there are more jobs available. Also, anti-immigrant Republicans are not getting much traction (see below).

Thursday, June 24, 2004

Americans Are Not Anti-Immigrant

Tamar Jacoby of the Manhattan Institute makes the point that the American public is not anti-immigrant, like many nativist would like us to believe.

In the face of widespread illegality, on the border and in the workplace, the public wants to restore the rule of law. Different soundings use different words, depending on their political orientation. Some talk about "cracking down," others about creating a pipeline that is "safe, legal and orderly" and still others about a "secure, controlled system" or "realistic limits, meaningfully enforced." But the numbers are virtually identical. As leading anti-immigration Rep. Tom Tancredo of Colorado puts it: "Every poll shows that over 75% of citizens support border security and strict enforcement of our immigration laws." This is what explains the apparent contradictions among other findings: The public is not anti-immigrant -- far from it. What people want, however they phrase it, is to regain a sense of control. But that hunger -- and this is the good news for reformers -- does not necessarily favor immigration opponents like Mr. Tancredo.

Pro-Immigration GOP Candidates Win

Incumbent Congressman Chris Cannon defeated an anti-immigration opponent in the Republican primary for the 3rd Congressional District of Utah.

In South Carolina, Congressman Jim DeMint defeated a protectionist candidate and earned the opportunity to take Fritz Hollings seat in November.

According to the Wall Street Journal (subscription):

Tuesday night was not a good one for Republican opponents of immigration reform and free trade. Primary races in South Carolina and Utah, respectively, saw protectionism defeated and the forces of rational immigration policy prevail. And by wide margins...

The results in Utah and South Carolina should convince Republican candidates that immigration reform and free trade can be political winners -- even in the least likely places. Moreover, these ideals help to define the GOP as a inclusive, pro-growth, forward-looking party.

Wednesday, June 23, 2004

The Happiest People

From Hispanic PR Wire (via Hispanic Business):

According to Dr. Ed Diener, a psychologist at the University of Illinois, looking at people from around the world, the happiest people are Hispanics. They tend to look at what's going to go right.

Meet Victor Lopez

I'd bet you didn't know that a very appealing Hispanic candidate is running for President.

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Minority Graduation Rates

This is a big problem (Philadelphia Inquirer, free registration):

Only about 46 percent of black students and 47 percent of Hispanic students graduate within six years of entering college, according to U.S. Department of Education data.

For all students, the graduation rate is 63 percent after six years. For white students, it is 67 percent. This is the first year the government has broken down the graduation data by ethnicity, sex and income.

A new study of the federal data by the Education Trust, a Washington research organization, calls the situation a "serious and deep-rooted problem." For students, the failure to earn a degree can have a lifelong impact: The wage gap has greatly widened between those with a degree and those with some college education but no degree.

Chavez Packing the Courts in Venezuela

From FindLaw.com:

The Venezuelan courts indeed require reform. But rather than take steps to strengthen judicial independence and protect the courts from political meddling, Chávez's allies have moved to rig the system to favor their own interests.

Last month, the pro-Chavez majority in the National Assembly took action to dramatically shift the Supreme Court's political balance. Under the terms of a new law, the Court will expand from twenty to thirty-two members, giving the Assembly's slim governing coalition the power to obtain an overwhelming majority of the Court's seats.

Tom Tancredo

Patrick Osio:

Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-CO) just doesn’t get the message. A large number of Congress representatives have gone beyond mean-spirited, ill-conceived anti-immigrant and anti-Latino proposals brought before Congress disguised as a pro-America, pro-patriotism legislation. More and more Congressional representatives and Americans in general have seen though Tancredo’s flag-waving, patriotic sounding rhetoric and found nothing more than a mean, foolish old-man who frolics with known racist, white-supremacists, and neo-Nazi groups and individuals.

Monday, June 21, 2004

Non-Citizens to Vote in SF

From the San Jose Mercury News (registration):

In a push to get more immigrants involved in their children's education, San Francisco officials are considering asking voters in November to give parents who are not U.S. citizens the right to vote in school board elections.

Under the proposed ballot initiative, even illegal immigrants would be able to vote, so long as they are parents with kids in public schools.

What non-citizen parents need is incentives and encouragement to become citizens and integrate more fully into society as a whole.

Hispanic Republicans in California

From the Washington Times:

There are seven Hispanic Republicans challenging Democratic incumbents for congressional seats and another dozen or so running for the state Assembly.

Some have run and lost before, but are bolstered by the party's heightened profile among Hispanics prompted by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. But others are newly minted federal candidates, likewise prompted by the governor's standing in the community.

I'm not getting too excited, yet.

Many of these eager Hispanic Republican candidates are no-chancers who are continuing an effort to pave the way.

Kids Live Segregated Lives

Interesting study (PDF) reported on by the Wall Street Journal (paid subscription):

Despite sharing a pop culture infused with a variety of ethnic influences, the most ethnically diverse generation of American kids ever is growing up in predominantly segregated environments.

...the vast majority of kids in the U.S. are growing up in homogeneous enclaves where they don't have contact with peers of other ethnicities, despite the fact that the U.S. is more diverse than ever.

It is possible to deduce from the study that the U.S. remains generations away from abandoning old prejudices and fully embracing diversity. But virtually none of the children used skin color, hair type or accent when told to describe differences between themselves and kids of other ethnicities.

Some interesting findings (not exactly surprising):

African-American children, according to the study, had the most positive sense of self, being more likely than any other ethnic group to see themselves as influential. White girls tend to be the least satisfied with their appearance. Hispanic families, more than any other group, speak more than one language at home.

Overall, 55% of children in the U.S. receive a weekly allowance. White children get the smallest -- an average of $9.20. Asian children receive the highest allowance, $13.70, and are expected to perform the fewest chores in exchange. Asian families do have high academic expectations, however.

Roughly two-thirds of Hispanic families, more than any other group, speak more than one language at home. That is a source of pride, not shame. The study found that Hispanic children are most likely to celebrate their culture, a likely reflection of their recognition that the Latino community is growing in numbers and influence.

Friday, June 18, 2004

Immigrants and Jobs

The decidedly anti-immigrant slant of this article from the Washington Times has the effect of making a good jobs report seem like bad news:

A new report shows that noncitizens — who cannot vote in the upcoming election — are taking almost 30 percent of the new jobs created in the United States, a trend that threatens to blunt President Bush's efforts to trumpet economic growth during his push for reelection.

When government statistics showed a first quarter increase of 1.3 million jobs , the Bush administration heralded it as a sign of economic recovery. With about 30 percent of those jobs going to non-voters, however, the possible impact of that growth is not as great.

The article also makes it sound as if the only possible reason for creating jobs is to gain a political advantage. What matters is that jobs are being created and the economy is growing. The fact that the President may benefit politically from these positive developments is secondary.

INS Backlog

From the LA Times:

WASHINGTON — It will take the government at least an additional two years to eliminate a backlog of almost 4 million applications for citizenship, green cards and work permits, the administration's top immigration official told a congressional subcommittee Thursday.

Chavez Buying Votes

From the Washington Post:

Chavez's government plans to spend at least $1.7 billion -- and perhaps twice that -- in oil revenue this year on social programs ranging from subsidized food to classes on literacy, farming, hair-styling and auto mechanics. Chavez has said his goal is a "social transformation" that will "redistribute national income" into the hands of the millions of poor people who have long been denied access to this country's vast oil riches.

But critics say Chavez is pandering to the poor to save his political career and gambling irresponsibly with the long-term fiscal health of a state company that provides half the country's revenue.

Thursday, June 17, 2004

The Hispanic Vote Is Key

If you've been reading this space, you are well aware the the Hispanic vote will be a crucial factor in this year's election, but just in case you haven't absorbed the point, here is some analysis from UPI via Hispanic Business Magazine:

Projections from the Los Angeles-based National Association of Elected Latinos and Appointed Officials, or NALEO, indicate that 6.9 million voters of Hispanic origin will vote in the U.S. presidential election on November 2. The organization stated that this figure represents a total of 6.1 percent of the country's total electorate, an increase of almost 1 million registered voters (17 percent), in contrast to the 2000 elections, when 5.9 million people of Latin origin voted, 5.4 percent of the electorate.

NALEO political analyst Efrain Escobedo told Tiempos del Mundo that the participation of Hispanic voters in the 2004 presidential election will for the first time in U.S. history have a significant impact in some states where a very tough election is expected. Escobedo observed, "The Hispanic vote is key, and a decisive percentage of votes in electoral battle states, like Colorado, Florida, New Mexico, Arizona, Texas and California." It is hardly a coincidence that the states Escobedo named as decisive battlegrounds are mostly in the southern states, their proximity to Mexico attracting large numbers of Hispanics.

Florida is particularly significant; it was there that the 2000 presidential election was decided, by a margin of 537 votes cast in favor of the current president, George W. Bush. Escobedo believes that the state will have the same importance in the 2004 election, as it has been projected that almost 800,000 Latinos will vote, an increase of nearly 200,000 voters.

...the leadership of both major parties has realized the potential benefits of co-opting the Latino vote, and both parties are earnestly searching for policies to guarantee that Hispanics help them capture key "battleground" states.

(emphasis added).

Cuba Travel Restrictions

CNN has a story about the dumb regulations further restricting travel to Cuba:

The tough new rules allow Cuban-Americans to visit immediate relatives on the island only once every three years, instead of once per year. Visits can last no longer than 14 days, according to the published regulations.

U.S. citizens who are not Cuban-Americans are banned from visiting the island, just 90 miles (150 km) from Florida, with a few exceptions like journalists and legislators.

The regulations ban travelers from bringing back any Cuban merchandise and receiving any gifts of goods or services from the Cuban government, Cuban nationals or citizens of third countries. Travelers previously had been allowed to bring back up to $100 worth of Cuban products for personal consumption.

And authorized visitors can now take only $300 in cash to Cuba, down from $3,000.

The rules also limit to 44 pounds (27.5 kilograms) the amount of baggage travelers can carry to the island and reduce the daily spending limit from $167 to $50.

Educational visits to Cuba were also curtailed.

It is very difficult for me to see how restricting Americans' freedom of movement and travel furthers the cause of freedom in Cuba or in America.

Helms-Burton

I'm sorry, but I think this law is stupid, and I don't think that a President who calls himself a conservative should be invoking it or enforcing it:

Jamaica's SuperClubs Super-Inclusive Resorts has pulled out of two hotel contracts in Cuba after the State Department threatened to cancel top executives' U.S. visas because the company is ''trafficking'' in property confiscated from Cuban Americans.

The move marks the first time the Bush administration has applied the controversial Helms-Burton law, which was invoked several times under the Clinton administration, according to the State Department.

The fact that the Adminstration is going after business people now tells me that Bush is fishing for Cuban-American votes in Florida.

GOP Split of Immigration

From OpinionJournal:

The cool reaction to Mr. Bush's guest-worker proposals is the most prominent example of party division on immigration. But it's not the only example. The phenomenon has also manifested itself in a number of House and Senate GOP primary races, where some Republicans have teamed up with radical greens and zero-population-growth-niks to intimidate and defeat other Republicans willing to defend immigration.

In Congress, Republicans invite population-control advocates posing as conservatives to committee hearings to denounce the Administration's initiatives. Republican Tom Tancredo of Colorado has gone so far as to set up Team America, a political action committee and Web site that bashes members of his own GOP House caucus who aren't sufficiently anti-immigrant.

projecthonduras.com

An excellent website gets some well-deserved recognition:

WASHINGTON, June 15 /PRNewswire/ -- projecthonduras.com has been named as one of eight finalists for the first annual Petersberg Prize, sponsored by Deutsche Telekom and Microsoft. The competition, which began with more than 220 nominees, seeks to recognize outstanding achievement in the use of information and communication technologies (ICT) to improve the lives of people in developing nations.

Marco Caceres, the founder of projecthonduras.com, is a great guy with a huge heart full of love for the people of Honduras. He would be a most worthy receipient of the prize. All Hispanics should be proud of the work he does.

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

ACLU Against the Poor

Star Parker is president of CURE, the Coalition for Urban Renewal and Education (www.urbancure.org). She is author of "Uncle Sam's Plantation: How Big Government Enslaves America's Poor and What You Can Do About It."):

As the civil-rights movement became politicized by ACLU-type liberals, values and personal responsibility were displaced by victimization politics. The result has been a social catastrophe in the African-American community. Thanks again to ACLU-type liberals, public schools that black children are forced to attend have purged all traditional values from education and, as a result, children have no clue why they are there and what the point is in education. These children are already most likely severely disadvantaged by coming from broken homes, also the product of the political purge of traditional values.

Binational Credit Cards

From the L.A. Times:

Catering to the large U.S. Latino market, Citigroup Inc. is introducing binational credit card programs that can be used by Mexican clients living in the United States and their family and friends in Mexico.

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Bolivia

I didn't realize how bad the situation is in Bolivia until I read this paper by Mark Falcoff of the American Enterprise Institute:

Republics do not normally commit suicide, but Bolivia may be an exception. If current trends continue, we may witness the first major alteration of the South American political map in more than a hundred years.

Thanks to the machinations of Socialists, including agents of Hugo Chavez, this South American country seems to be coming apart at the seams.

Mel Martinez

Former HUD Secretary Mel Martinez's primary campaign for the U.S. Senate is failing to catch fire in Florida.

Monday, June 14, 2004

Mass in Havana for Reagan

Mass in Havana for Ronald Reagan

HAVANA, June 10 (Reinaldo Cosano Alén / www.cubanet.org) - Representatives of 16 dissident organizations attended a requiem for Ronald Reagan in Havana June 9.

Monsignor Ricardo Santana, the highest-ranking prelate of the Orthodox Church in Cuba, officiated at the Mass.

According to an announcement read during the ceremony, another Mass has been scheduled at the time of the former U. S. President's burial.

Alex Acosta

The Miami Herald has a nice profile on the man who heads the U.S. Justice Department's Civil Rights Division:

The Cuban American from Miami who entered Harvard University at age 17 is now the point man in the government's drive to halt trafficking of an estimated 15,000 people a year into the United States for slavery...

Conservative, smart and young -- he is 35 -- Acosta has helped launch anti-trafficking campaigns this year in four cities: Phoenix, Philadelphia, Atlanta and now Tampa. He made more news last month when he reopened the investigation into the death of Emmett Till, a 14-year-old black youth whose abduction and killing in Mississippi in 1955 helped spark the civil rights movement.

Women of Color

From the Christian Science Monitor:

Still facing the prospect of double bias in the workplace - because of race and gender - women of color working full time often struggle to advance. They usually make less than their white counterparts. For them, the "glass ceiling" sometimes looks more like steel. Simply avoiding being stereotyped, even by other women, can be hard.

I am generally very suspicious of wage comparisons by gender, and the lack of data in this article leaves a lot to be desired. When you throw in race and ethnicity, the picture only becomes more muddled.

Population Growth

USATODAY:

The number of Hispanics and Asians in the United States each grew roughly four times faster than the nation's population overall between 2000 and 2003, the Census Bureau reported Monday...

Hispanics, the nation's largest minority, numbered 39.9 million in July 2003, up 13% from April 2000, according to the figures released Monday. The U.S. population overall grew 3% during that time to 290.8 million.

Venezuela

Steven Ixer of Business Week warns Venezuela watchers to not count out Hugo Chavez:

Despite the opposition's optimism... it would be unwise to count the wily President out. While polls show that only 28% of Venezuelans back Chávez, the opposition has the support of just 38% of voters -- and the rest are undecided. "This campaign has to be directed at the neutrals," says Luis Vicente León, director of local polling company Datanálisis.

A look at Venezuela's political landscape makes it clear that the fractured opposition has no front-running candidate to challenge Chávez. The opposition is split among leaders such as the center-right [state governor Enrique] Mendoza, Oxford-educated liberal lawyer Julio Borges, and Pompeyo Márquez, a longtime leftist. Little unites them beyond their desire to get Chávez out of office. "People are being asked to vote either for or against Chávez, but they have no idea what the alternative is," says Michael Rowan, director of Corporate Strategy and Communications, a local consultancy.

Is Bush Fading In Florida?

From the Lakeland, Florida Ledger:

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. -- Plenty has changed in Florida since the days of dimpled chads and disputed ballots, much of it in President Bush's favor. Brother Jeb easily won re-election as governor in 2002, and the Republican Party increased its ranks. The economy has shown signs of improvement, with more than a quarter-million new jobs.

But the narrow advantage the GOP incumbent carried into the election year seems to have evaporated, at least for now, as Florida voters of all political stripes expressed dismay over the war in Iraq.

Roberto A. Rivera-Soto

From HispanicBusiness.com:

Roberto A. Rivera-Soto became the first Hispanic to be confirmed for a seat on New Jersey's Supreme Court when the state Senate unanimously approved his appointment Thursday.

Huntington Interview

If you missed C-SPAN's Booknotes last night, you can view the entire one-hour interview with Dr. Samuel Huntington on his controversial book "Who Are We?" He discusses his views on what he thinks are problems with the nature of Hispanic immigration into the U.S. (among other things).

Diversity in Texas

Texas' 10% rule is under attack:

Parents whose children have been denied admission to the University of Texas at Austin, the crown jewel of Texas higher education, argue that some high schools are better than others, and that managing to stay in the top 25 percent at a demanding school should mean more than landing in the top 10 percent at a less rigorous one. The dispute shows how hard it is to come up with a system for doling out precious but scarce spots in elite universities without angering someone.

Saturday, June 12, 2004

Venezuela's Moment of Truth

James Menendez for BBC World News:

Hugo Chavez's supporters revere him as a hero. His opponents loathe him with a passion. But it's not the whole story.

Polls suggest there is a growing number of people who don't like either side. A significant chunk of the electorate - perhaps as large as 30% - who're looking for a new face, with fresh ideas about how to get Venezuela back on its feet.

It may be these people who hold the casting votes.

Friday, June 11, 2004

Cuba

You know things are desperately bad in Cuba when refugees from the Island seek asylum in Honduras, one of the poorest countries in Latin America.

Venezuela Recall

The New York Times:

Touch-screen voting machines, which have been plagued by security and reliability concerns in the United States, will be used in the recall vote on President Hugo Chávez, prompting his foes and foreign diplomats to contend that the left-leaning government may use the equipment to manipulate the vote.

Thursday, June 10, 2004

Reagan and Hispanics

There may be a lesson here for W:

Democratic Caucus Chairman Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), the highest ranking Latino in the House, said, “I think President Reagan enjoyed deep respect in the Latino community in part because of the amnesty bill.”

Menendez explained that Reagan, working with Democrats, offered political amnesty and a path toward citizenship for illegal Mexican immigrants.

“Because of the amnesty law, he’s pretty highly regarded,” said Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-Calif.), adding, “In other ways, his domestic policy wasn’t the best for the Latino community.”

Goodbye, Mr. President


I am as sad as Maggie Thatcher looks about the passing of President Reagan. Farewell, Gipper. Posted by Hello

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Jose Hernandez

It's not every day that you hear of a Hispanic astronaut.

More on Huntington's Book

Ralph Reiland:

The "assimilation successes of the past are unlikely to be duplicated with the contemporary flood of immigrants from Latin America," writes Huntington, because these new immigrants are "comfortable with their own culture" and fail to "look down on and reject their ancestral language." Huntington cites a study which found that "more than 90 percent of U.S-born people of Mexican origin spoke English fluently," but that's not enough. We won 't be safe, he contends, until everyone who crosses the Rio Grande dreams in the same language as the original Huntingtons: "There is no Americano dream.

"There is only the American dream created by an Anglo-Protestant society. Mexican-Americans will share in that dream and in that society only if they dream in English."

Missing from Professor Huntington's account is Jose Gutierrez. An orphan on the streets of Guatemala City, he made his way to California at the age of 14 by walking and jumping freight trains. Brought up in foster homes, he joined the Marines to make money for college. On March 21, 2003, he became the first combat casualty in Operation Iraqi Freedom. He was killed in action in southern Iraq, defending the society he worked so hard to reach.

Monday, June 07, 2004

Florida Cubans and the GOP

It seems like the Party and the President need to do some work here:

President Bush's policies toward Fidel Castro's regime and the war in Iraq are threatening to fray traditionally solid Republican ties to Cuban-American voters, the largest segment of Florida's fast-growing Hispanic community.

In 2000, Bush won Florida by a mere 537 votes, but his advantage among Cubans was about 4-to-1. Non-Cuban Hispanics tend to vote Democratic and are flocking to the state. On Nov. 2, the key to Florida — the decisive swing state four years ago — could well be this disparate Hispanic vote.

Racial Preferences in California

Is the California legislature trying to sidestep Proposition 209?

Assembly Bill 2387 allows "the University of California and the California State University ... to consider culture, race, gender, ethnicity" and a number of other factors in their admissions processes.

As I read it, the bill is illegal. Proposition 209, a constitutional amendment ratified by California's public in 1996, explicitly states: "The state shall not discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or public contracting."

But the officials in Sacramento are not dumb. Their deliberations were extensive and their methodology was efficient. It is for this reason that AB 2387 includes the phrase, "so long as no preference is given."

Juan Angel Gutierrez

This kind of crazy talk drives all Conservatives nuts (and rightly so).

"We have got to eliminate the gringo, and what I mean by that is if the worst comes to the worst, we have got to kill him."

Hispanic Vote is Key

From Yahoo News:

The US Hispanic vote will reach record dimensions in the November US elections and should play a make-or-break role in many key states, a Hispanic political group promised.

Thursday, June 03, 2004

Discrimination and Merit

As is often the case, Roger Clegg has some interesting insights on the issues of racial discrimination and standards:

Once upon a time, the Left opposed racial discrimination. It argued that it was unfair to let racial considerations trump qualifications based on merit. The principle of nondiscrimination carried the day in the 1960s, and it was enshrined into law in various statutes. But these statutes have not resulted in proportional representation for some groups, particularly African Americans, at the upper reaches of our elites. And so now, ironically, it is the Left that pushes racial preferences and denigrates merit.

There are both charitable and uncharitable ways to explain this. The charitable explanation is that the Left cares so deeply about integration that it is willing to sacrifice or bend considerations of merit. If you insist on integration, and merit stands in the way, then you must sacrifice merit. The less charitable explanation is that the Left has never been comfortable... with the whole notion of merit...

It is wrong to discriminate on the basis of race and ethnicity; it is foolish not to discriminate on the basis of merit. And so the Left's program of favoring the former and opposing the latter is both wrong and foolish.

The Hispanic Vote in the Southwest

Raul Lowery Contreras has an interesting analysis of the Hispanic vote in Arizona and New Mexico and some advice for President Bush:

The best advice to President Bush is to ignore the Mexican haters and to ask for the vote of the optimistic, religious Mexican Americans who also happen to be the hardest working Americans whose income taxes were slashed deeply by President Bush’s tax cuts.

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

Chavez

The Washington Post Editorial Board sees right through the Hugo Chavez propaganda regarding the Venezuela referendum. Good for them.

Maria Anastasia O'Grady (subscription) has known this all along and she does not mince her words:

What the president has been doing to create the illusion of legitimacy would have made his ideological ancestors, the Bolsheviks, proud.

Approve CAFTA Now

Miami Herald Editorial (free registration):

The Bush administration did the right thing to sign the Central American Free Trade Agreement last Friday despite protectionist cries from the left and the right of the political spectrum. The United States not only signaled its support for a poor region that needs the economic boost, but for free trade itself, which increasingly has come under attack in this election season...

There is... no reason for Congress to delay a vote on this issue until after the election, as many fear will happen. Any member of Congress who can understand the relationship between free trade and economic growth should be able to explain to constituents that CAFTA is a winning proposition.