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[Music clip: From Haydn's Derbyshire March No. 2, piano version]
01 — Intro. And Radio Derb is on the air! Greetings, ladies and gentlemen. This is your appropriately genial host John Derbyshire, coming to you from VDARE.com's magnificently equipped sound studio here in the bosky hills of Long Island.
Most of this week's podcast is concerned with politics, for which I am developing an enthusiasm.
I hope I didn't break any hearts there among listeners who have accustomed themselves to think of me as regarding our political classes with the same loathing, disgust, and contempt that they, my faithful listeners, feel.
Permit me to explain myself.
02 — Our four big political parties. I have, in columns over the years, and here on Radio Derb much more than once, I'm sure, opined that too many people bother far too much about politics; that obsessing over politics is the sign of a disordered mind (or I may on occasion have attributed it to malfunctioning of the stomach or some other organ); and that we should all be much happier and healthier, and our public business better run, if we emulated the saints Warren Harding and Calvin Coolidge, who encouraged citizens to devote their energies to private and commercial endeavors rather than to politics.
I have very likely quoted that other saint, Samuel Johnson, to this general effect, quote:
Boswell: So, Sir, you laugh at schemes of political improvement.
It is therefore with some mild embarrassment that I confess I am enjoying this year's Presidential contest. This is fun.
And it's not just, as I was thinking until recently, it's not just fun on the Republican side. I've been assuming that the Democratic candidate debates must be snoozers, so I haven't bothered to watch any of them, just read newspaper reports the next day. Now I'm thinking I may have been wrong. It's one thing to know that white gentry liberals, especially young ones, are fleeing from Mrs Clinton as if she were a zombie invasion — which in a sense of course she is — but it might be even more entertaining to watch her trying to deal with the fact from a debate platform.
Yes, I know: Mrs Clinton has her party's nomination in the bag, with solid support from labor unions, blacks, and the media, and with Obama's people guarding her back on that business about State Department emails. Still, while it lasts, her discomfort over the number of votes Bernie Sanders has taken from her is delicious to hear about, and might be fun to watch.
And then, yes, the GOP. If the Democratic contest is vaudeville, the Republicans are giving us Grand Opera, or at any rate opera buffa. If the party establishment candidate on the Democratic side has suffered an alarming, though non-lethal, draining of votes away from her to an insurgent from the fringes, the equivalent candidate on the Republican side, Jeb Bush, suffered a complete and humiliating failure to launch, in spite of having chests full of donor gold to spend on advertising himself.
There is of course a wealth of commentary about the larger implications of all this. Here's my contribution, for what it's worth.
It looks to me as though the two-party system has been an illusion. We actually have four parties. We have:
I'd add that I don't think this four-party configuration is stable long-term. Having committed the U.S.A. to multiculturalism by importing tens of millions of Mexicans, Central Americans, Caribbeans, Asians, Africans, and Muslims, our final destination will be the one arrived at by every other multicultural nation, the situation defined by the late Lee Kuan Yew, who actually ran such a nation for thirty years, quote:
In multiracial societies, you don't vote in accordance with your economic interests and social interests, you vote in accordance with race and religion.
That's the end point. This current four-party alignment that I think I have divined, is a way-station — just a mile-stone on the road to frank, open voting by race and religion.
03 — Wins and losses for the week. Well, we've had a slew of primaries since the last Radio Derb: fifteen, I make it, although it's possible, nay probable, I missed one or two. (I'm including caucuses as primaries here. Please don't pick nits.)
So who won where? Well, Bernie Sanders won Kansas, Nebraska, Maine, and Michigan. Michigan was the big one for him, and seriously embarrassing for Mrs Clinton. I knew they had a lot of white-tailed deer out there among the automobile factories, but white gentry liberals? New to me.
That same day, Tuesday, Mrs Clinton won Mississippi. She'd also won Louisiana on Saturday. Those have been her two wins this week, Mississippi and Louisiana.
Probably it was the demographics that made the difference there, or some big part of the difference. Mississippi is 37 percent black, Louisiana 30 percent. Michigan, however — which Bernie Sanders won, remember — is only 14 percent black. Bernie's other victories, Kansas, Nebraska, and Maine, are respectively six, five, and one percent black.
On the other side, the other two of my hypothetical four parties, Donald Trump won Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, and Hawaii. Ted Cruz got Kansas, Maine, and Idaho. Oh, and Marco Rubio won Puerto Rico.
At this point I might insert my usual tirade about how we should forsake colonialism and give Puerto Rico its independence, which I'm sure is what our oppressed colonial subjects down there must be yearning for. I've vented about that so often, though, I'll give it a pass this week. Congratulations, anyway, Marco!
So, on my four-party schema, what have we got? Well, the white gentry liberal party is doing respectably well. Emphasis there on the word "respectably." What's the point of being gentry if you're not respectable? Still, they are not doing well enough to capture the Democratic Party's nomination. That looks certain to go to the party of NAMs and the SEIU.
The donorist-capitalist-neocon party is on the edge of total collapse this election cycle, though if they can unite and rally around Ted Cruz, and perhaps get another war going, they may still have a shot at restoring their control of the GOP.
And the white prole party, under the fearless leadership of Mr Trump, advances from victory to victory.
Just a technical point on that. Most of what we've been having so far on the Republican side have been open primaries. People who aren't registered Republicans have been voting in them. This has got some Cruz and Rubio propagandists telling us that it's these non-Republicans who are swelling Trump's numbers, that he's not doing as well as the other guys among actual Republicans.
Well, that's not the case. The quantitative blogger called "Audacious Epigone" has crunched the numbers, at least for Trump and Cruz. Money quote:
Among Republicans who've voted for one of the top two, Trump beats Cruz, 54 to 46 percent. Trump's lead over Cruz isn't as wide as it is among independents, but a lead it most certainly is.
Yes, I do have to admit, I'm more engaged with this election than I thought I could be. For sure, I've never been so interested in the psephological bean-counting. It's fun.
04 — Trump Derangement Syndrome. Not the least enjoyable aspect here is watching liberals writhing in the throes of Trump Derangement Syndrome.
David Remnick's editorial in the March 14th New Yorker, for example, is simply wonderful. I was laughing and clapping as I read it. Sample, quote:
No American demagogue — not Huey Long, not Joseph McCarthy, not George Wallace — has ever achieved such proximity to national power.
Well, no; but without conceding Remnick's application of the word "demagogue," I'll just observe that Huey Long, Joe McCarthy, and George Wallace operated in a system where the major political parties gave a damn about law-abiding middle-class Americans who work for a living. Which is not the case today.
Not the least delectable feature of David Remnick's anti-Trump philippic (donaldic?) is his anguished acknowledgment of the fact that the Great Unwashed masses voting for Trump couldn't care less what metropolitan left-liberals like David Remnick think. Sample quote:
As yet, no detestable remark, no flagrant display of ignorance, no scummy business deal has dissuaded his followers. Nor will Trump be defeated by the putatively scathing critiques of the commentariat (including this one) … Last month, John Oliver, a master of the extended comic decimation, opened video fire on Trump after many months of resisting the subject. So hilarious! So devastating! And then Trump cleaned up on Super Tuesday. Don't they watch HBO in the [Southeastern Conference] states?
Well, I'm sure they do. It's just that, like me, they never heard of John Oliver. Looking him up, I see that he's one of those smug, smirky, oh-so-ironical hipster-left comedians — like Maher and Colbert and Jon Stewart — who came into the world to assure white gentry liberals that they are morally superior to their white fellow citizens.
Whether or not Southeastern Conference staters watch HBO, they sure as sugar don't read the New Yorker. And that's one more reason for David Remnick to hate them.
05 — The Godwin-Warhol Law. At least David Remnick didn't play the Hitler card. Comparisons of Donald Trump to Hitler have been coming thick and fast lately.
Last Sunday night The Wrap — that's a Hollywood website, W-R-A-P, "Wrap" — ran an article headlined Trump-Hitler Roundup: Here's Who Compared Donald Trump to Hitler This Weekend. This was just for the weekend to late on Sunday, mind you. They logged Bill Maher, Louis C.K., Huffington Post, Saturday Night Live, and Glenn Beck — all in one incomplete weekend!
Don't any of these folk grasp how corny it is — how naff, if you'll excuse a Britishism — to compare someone to Hitler? As The Wrap points out, both the current President and the previous one have been compared to Hitler. So have any number of other public figures, left, right, and center. I have not the slightest doubt that I have been compared to Hitler by somebody, somewhere … somebody other than my kids, I mean.
The sheer unimaginative absurdity of it all was caught very nicely by one of Steve Sailer's commenters, quote:
The Godwin-Warhol Law: In the future, everyone will be Hitler for 15 minutes.
All this Hitlering plays into the theme I've been running on Radio Derb recently: that leftist ideologies draw on the same modules of the human psyche as does religion. Hitler here is the anti-Christ, or perhaps Satan, if that's a different person … being, whatever. Liberals who bring up Hitler are invoking the Supernatural.
Now sure, Hitler was a nasty piece of work; but did the other gangster-despots of the 20th century live in vain? Can't we get at least one comparison to Stalin or Mao, each of whom killed, or caused to be killed, far more people than Hitler over much longer spells in control of their nations: Stalin 26 years, Mao 27 years, against Hitler's mere twelve? Or if you want to be a little more arithmetically sophisticated and just consider the proportion of their own citizens they murdered, why not give a shout-out to Pol Pot, Kim Il-sung, Ho Chi Minh, or Fidel Castro?
But no, there can only be one ruler in Hell, and Hitler's it. As I said, we're in the realm of the Supernatural here.
You realize, in fact, listening to this stuff, that liberals have internalized a kind of folk history of the 20th century. I mean, just as experts like to talk about "folk psychology" or "folk metaphysics," you can have a sort of stripped-down, simplified view of history — History for Dummies — that is based on vague superstition and doesn't bear much relation to empirical fact. Twentieth-century European history, in the minds of American liberals, began in 1933 and ended in 1945. That's all they know.
Neocons, who I've included with capitalists and donors in the fourth party of my schema, are slightly more interesting. Quote from an article in the New York Times, March 2nd, quote:
Max Boot, a foreign policy adviser to Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, said that if efforts to block Mr Trump fell short, he would vote against a Republican nominee for the first time in his life.
The implication there is that Trump is worse than Stalin, so at least one of the non-Hitler mass murderers is getting some air time.
It seems that neocons like Boot just can't help reminding us that their faction started out as Trotskyists, Stalin's enemies on the far Left. You can take the boy out of the Comintern, but you can't take the Comintern out of the boy.
[Clip: "The Internationale."]
06 — Hispander-a-thon in Miami. Just a couple more on these Presidential contests. I apologize to listeners who dislike politics as much as I thought I did.
Wednesday night Bernie Sanders and Mrs Clinton debated in Miami under the joint auspices of The Washington Post and Univision, a Latino Supremacist TV station. I didn't watch this one, but read through the transcript afterwards on The Washington Post website.
This debate could accurately be described as a Hispander-a-thon. The moderators were pushing, pushing, pushing for the interests of Latinos over legacy Americans. The candidates, far from pushing back in defence of Anglo-Americans, were pulling where the moderators pushed — helping them promote the narrative, assuring viewers that they were just as enthusiastically on board with the transformation of the U.S.A. into Guatemala North as were the nagging, lisping gringo-haters of Univision.
Sample exchange, from some white-Latino Hidalgo Supremacist named Ramos to Bernie Sanders, quote from the transcript:
Ramos: And can you promise not to deport immigrants who don't have a criminal record?
That got a round of applause from the audience — all of whom, in my opinion, should be candidates for prompt deportation.
Here's another sample. The moderator here is another Latino, name of Salinas, shilling for a Central American government keen to ship its unemployable and criminal underclasses to the U.S.A. Quote:
Salinas: Now we have a question from the audience for both of you.
The whole thing then lapsed into Spanish, these invaders of our country being too stupid or arrogant to learn our language.
Question (through translator): We have a question from the public. I want to go to Lucia Aquiette. She's an immigrant from Guatemala, she's here with her five children who have not seen their father since he was deported three years ago. She has a question for both of you.
That got another round of applause. Note Bernie basking in the approval of the New York Times, whose biggest shareholder is a Mexican billionaire who got rich by grabbing a monopoly on Mexicans in the U.S.A. phoning their relatives back home. That's a really stirring recommendation, Bernie.
The correct answer to these staged heartstring-tugging questions about divided families is to reunite them in their home countries, by deporting the family members living illegally here, sucking on the welfare titty and doing jobs that five years from now will be done by robots. In China they are printing houses.
The sensible, patriotic way to unite families is to send their members back to their home countries. You will never hear that in a Democratic Party debate, though. I wish someone would ask it in one of the Republican Party debates.
Speaking of which …
07 — Stuff you can't help matters. We had another GOP debate this week on Thursday night, between the four GOP candidates still standing. It went on for two and a half hours; which, even with my new-found enthusiasm for the political process, was too much for me. Mrs Derbyshire reports that I began snoring at about the ninety minutes mark.
And what I saw was actually quite soporific. The candidates were, as Donald Trump remarked with surprise at one point, exquisitely polite to each other. The talk was all wonky stuff about trade, social security, the economy, … I feel my eyes growing heavy again. There was no penis boasting at all!
With my attention wandering, I found myself contemplating Ted Cruz's face. There's something wrong with it. That is of course a shameful thing to say. Nobody can help his face, and I — as numerous listeners have pointed out in the past when I have ventured into this regrettable zone — I myself am no oil painting.
Shameful or not, though, these things that no-one can help do matter in a democracy where you are up for inspection. It's not just faces, either. I once passed the opinion that, quote, "nobody with a squeaky voice can rise to very high office in a democracy." Again, nobody can help the pitch of his voice, so again this is grossly unfair. I'm sure I'm right, though.
In the case of Ted Cruz and his face, I was surprised to get some support from Camille Paglia, writing in Salon.com. All right, all right, it's a lefty website; but Ms Paglia's piece is actually quite pro-Trump and doesn't mention Hitler at all. Quote from her:
Trump is a blunt, no-crap mensch, while Cruz is a ham actor, doling out fake compassion like chopped liver. Cruz's lugubrious, weirdly womanish face, with its prim, tight smile and mawkishly appealing puppy-dog eyebrows, is like a waxen mask, always on the verge of melting. This guy doesn't know who the hell he is — and the White House is no place for him and us to find out.
That catches a lot of what I feel when the Cruz countenance fills my TV screen.
Again, it's very unfair. "There's no art / To find the mind's construction in the face," says one of Shakespeare's characters … who, indeed, later in the play gets stabbed to death by a man he'd trusted.
These things do matter in electoral politics, though. We've elected ugly guys to the Presidency — Abraham Lincoln was, by general agreement, ugly, or at best homely — and we've elected fat men, and a man in a wheelchair; but puppy-dog eyebrows? I don't think so.
08 — Madame Butterfly and Phileas Fogg. Well, enough of that. Let's check out the campus scene. What's the latest issue at our institutions of higher education?
"Cultural appropriation," that's what. I just did an Ngram on this phrase. It started showing up in books around 1980, crept along to about 1990, then took off in a big way. It's still rising. Now it's being bandied about in common speech — especially on campuses.
What is it? As best I can understand, an act of cultural appropriation occurs when a white person for some purpose humorous, dramatic, or commercial adopts the appearance, dress, manner, language, or characteristic artefacts of some nonwhite culture. It goes without saying that only white people can be guilty of cultural appropriation. Only white people can be guilty of anything, pretty much.
An example of cultural appropriation would be the opera Madame Butterfly. There you have a troupe of, usually, white opera singers dressed up as geisha girls and Buddhist bonzes, fanning themselves and committing harikari while singing in Italian. Cultural appropriation, see?
You may be thinking: Wait a minute. Don't Japanese politicians and businessmen dress in jackets and trousers, white shirts and ties, and put black oxford shoes on their feet? Shouldn't they be in kimonos with sword belts? Aren't THEY appropriating OUR culture?
If you are thinking that, you are missing the point. The point is to insult and humiliate white people, that's all. If we don't keep constantly putting white people down and destroying their self-confidence, they might go off colonizing the world, building railroads across India, abolishing the slave trade, stamping out human sacrifice, spreading literacy, inventing life-saving drugs, and committing similar horrors.
And I'll allow I may be oversimplifying somewhat. The precise target of humiliation may actually be heterosexual male non-Hispanic white people. It usually is.
You don't wade very deep into these waters before you step on a contradiction, though. Take a drag queen, for example — a guy dressed up as a woman. Is that "cultural appropriation"? I guess it is, on the strict definition; but he's probably homosexual or transsexual — a victim! — so it doesn't count.
To really untangle these mysteries, you need a six-month intensive course in Cultural Marxist theory. For the purposes of a short podcast, I'll keep it simple.
Anyway, here are some stories about "cultural appropriation" on our campuses.
First story: A group of students at Bowdoin College in Maine held a sombrero party February 20th. They wore the characteristically Mexican headgear, drank tequila, put up some drywall, and ripped the beating hearts out of several children … No, I made the last two up. The sombreros and tequila are true, though.
This monstrous outrage stirred the college authorities to action. They have offered counseling to students who were, quote, "injured and affected" by the sombrero party. They have also of course offered "safe spaces," presumably sombrero- and tequila-free, to offended students.
The organizers of the party face as-yet-unspecified disciplinary action. Perhaps the punishment will consist of twenty-four hours bound and locked in a room with a TV showing continuous reruns of Sabado Gigante. May the Lord have mercy on their souls!
Bowdoin College was the alma mater of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, the greatest poet the United States has yet produced. Permit me to quote from my review of Peter Wood's 2003 book Diversity: The Invention of a Concept, quote:
When Longfellow, an Anglo-Saxon Unitarian, used the metrical structure of the Finnish Kalevala to write an epic poem about American Indians, he attained diversity without striving for it. The typical diversiphile of today would confidently deride such a production as "inauthentic," while knowing nothing, and desiring to know nothing, about either medieval Finns or 16th-century Iroquois chiefs.
Nowadays, in fact, ol' Henry Wadsworth would be tarred, feathered, and ridden out of town on a rail for such a gross act of cultural appropriation.
Second story: Students at Pembroke College, Cambridge (over in England) planned a different party, themed on Jules Verne's novel Around the World in Eighty Days, which was a great favorite of mine in childhood. This party will not now go ahead. Quote from the newspaper report:
Pembroke College's Junior Parlour Committee feared that the theme could lead to "cultural appropriation," with people wearing clothes from an ethnic group they don't belong to.
Those Japanese businessmen come to mind again … but again, it's whites that are the target here.
In fact, if ethnic stereotyping in all its generality were to be considered deplorable, Around the World in Eighty Days is a feast of it. Jules Verne, the author, was of course French. Phileas Fogg, the hero of the book, is a Frenchman's notion of an anal-retentive English bachelor. Phileas Fogg fired his valet because, quote from the book, "that luckless youth had brought him shaving-water at eighty-four degrees Fahrenheit instead of eighty-six," end quote.
And then, while crossing India, Fogg rescues a young woman from being burned alive on her husband's funeral pyre — a grossly insensitive invasion of Indian cultural practices. He then takes the young woman back to England with him and marries her. Talk about cultural appropriation! I hope he at least took her to a nice curry restaurant on their wedding anniversaries.
09 — Miscellany. And now, our closing miscellany of brief items.
Imprimis: Moxie. We've been hearing a lot about moxie recently. Donald Trump, we're told, has moxie. What is it, though?
Well, it's a brand of soda. You can buy it in six-packs at Amazon.com. You probably didn't know that unless you come from New England, where they drink a lot of the stuff.
Moxie's been around for more than a century. It started out back in the days when soft drinks were sold as tonics, often containing alcohol or cocaine. I first saw a Moxie bottle, one preserved from the 1920s, at the Calvin Coolidge Memorial in Plymouth Notch, Vermont. It was a favorite drink of that great President; and his father ran a village store that sold the stuff.
So, Moxie. Give it a try. Look at the connections here: Calvin Coolidge, Donald Trump. What's not to like?
Item: We had our Super Tuesday, now Germany is having its Super Sunday, this weekend. Three of Germany's sixteen states are having elections to their state legislatures, and the whole exercise is going to be a test of Angela Merkel's popularity following the mass influx of Middle Eastern Muslims last year.
The numbers to watch for are the votes for AfD, Alternativ für Deutschland, which is one of those populist European parties our mainstream media commentators have been hyperventilating about as, quote, "Far Right." AfD wants Germany to control its borders and preserve its German identity. Please note that this does not mean they're Nazis. The Nazis wanted to expand Germany's borders to the Urals and the Pyrenees, and impose German identity all over. Different thing.
The AfD leader is 40-year-old Frauke Petry, and I must say, I like the cut of her jib. Ms Petry made news back in January by saying that illegal immigrants should be shot by border guards if they persist in trying to break in. That of course sent liberals to the fainting couch, although it seems to me a reasonable policy. I personally will, after a clear and suitable warning, shoot anyone that breaks into my house uninvited. I don't know why a nation wouldn't have the same option.
Ms Petry's party is polling at 15 to 20 percent, which is pretty good for a new party. Perhaps she can stir the Germans to set aside their crippling mentality of collective guilt and stand up for Western Civilization, to which they and their ancestors have contributed so much. Let's see how the votes go on Sunday.
Item: Here's some cultural de-appropriation.
You know how boosters of mass immigration always want to tell you about the wonderful ethnic restaurants you'll get? Well, in Italy at least patriots are pushing back against that. The city of Verona in the north of that country has banned any new restaurants offering ethnic cuisine, which apparently includes Southern Italian cuisine.
From Smithsonian magazine, March 4th, quote:
Verona mayor Flavio Tosi has attempted to justify the ban by saying that it's the best way to preserve the city's culture and traditions in the face of an explosion of restaurants serving food like kebabs, gyros and fried food more typical of southern, seaside Italian regions than the more mountainous north.
Never underestimate the north-south antipathy among Italians. Mayor Tosi in fact is a former stalwart of the Northern League party, described by the Smithsonian as, quote, "far-right and anti-immigrant"; so, basically he's Hitler.
Verona isn't alone. Some other north Italian cities, including Venice and Florence, are considering similar bans for the protection of their traditions and culture. Good for them.
Leave the falafel, take the cannolis.
Item: In the Daily News of Naples, Florida, March 7th, opinion columnist Dan K. Thomasson showed a measure of class when writing about Donald Trump by not comparing Trump to Hitler. Reaching for something a tad more original, Mr Thomasson instead referred to Trump as, quote, "an utterly unqualified Neanderthal billionaire."
The usage there is the one given in the Oxford English Dictionary, quote: "a primitive, uncivilized, or loutish person."
Fair enough, you might think, and a refreshing change from all the Hitlering being deployed elsewhere in the vituperosphere. Wait, though: Neanderthals were people, too — well, more or less — and they have their defenders.
Here's evolutionary biologist Evelyn Jagoda of Harvard University. Quote from her:
It irritates me a bit. To use the word to mean "brutish and stupid" is really kind of baseless.
You see, according to Ms Jagoda and other Neanderthalists, our hominid cousins were smart, creative, and possibly sexy. At any rate, pretty much everyone outside Africa has bits of the Neanderthal genome scattered in theirs. One point six percent of my own genome is Neanderthal, according to National Geographic.
So let's have a little respect here. Enough of this Sapiens supremacy. Just because a species has gone extinct, that's no reason to demean them. Neanderthal Lives Matter! I mean, you know … they would matter, if there were any left.
10 — Signoff. That's it, ladies and gentlemen. Thank you for listening, and please contribute what you can to our current fundraising drive. There's a prize! — check it out.
I leave you with a clip from that fine old 1960s pop song "Speedy Gonzales." However, to avoid any trauma to the students of Bowdoin College, the version you will hear is being sung in Hungarian.
More from Radio Derb next week!
[Music clip: Koós János, "Speedy Gonzales."]