In which a group of graying eternal amateurs discuss their passions, interests and obsessions, among them: movies, art, politics, evolutionary biology, taxes, writing, computers, these kids these days, and lousy educations.

E-Mail Donald
Demographer, recovering sociologist, and arts buff

E-Mail Fenster
College administrator and arts buff

E-Mail Francis
Architectural historian and arts buff

E-Mail Friedrich
Entrepreneur and arts buff
E-Mail Michael
Media flunky and arts buff

We assume it's OK to quote emailers by name.

Try Advanced Search

  1. Another Technical Note
  2. La Ligne Maginot
  3. Actress Notes
  4. Technical Day
  5. Peripheral Explanation
  6. More Immigration Links
  7. Another Graphic Detournement
  8. Peripheral Artists (5): Mikhail Vrubel
  9. Illegal Update

Sasha Castel
AC Douglas
Out of Lascaux
The Ambler
Modern Art Notes
Cranky Professor
Mike Snider on Poetry
Silliman on Poetry
Felix Salmon
Polly Frost
Polly and Ray's Forum
Stumbling Tongue
Brian's Culture Blog
Banana Oil
Scourge of Modernism
Visible Darkness
Thomas Hobbs
Blog Lodge
Leibman Theory
Goliard Dream
Third Level Digression
Here Inside
My Stupid Dog
W.J. Duquette

Politics, Education, and Economics Blogs
Andrew Sullivan
The Corner at National Review
Steve Sailer
Joanne Jacobs
Natalie Solent
A Libertarian Parent in the Countryside
Rational Parenting
Colby Cosh
View from the Right
Pejman Pundit
God of the Machine
One Good Turn
Liberty Log
Daily Pundit
Catallaxy Files
Greatest Jeneration
Glenn Frazier
Jane Galt
Jim Miller
Limbic Nutrition
Innocents Abroad
Chicago Boyz
James Lileks
Cybrarian at Large
Hello Bloggy!
Setting the World to Rights
Travelling Shoes

Redwood Dragon
The Invisible Hand
Daze Reader
Lynn Sislo
The Fat Guy
Jon Walz


Our Last 50 Referrers

« Confessions of a Naked Model | Main | Genes »

June 08, 2005

In Newsweek

Michael Blowhard writes:

Dear Blowhards --

* Newsweek's Robert Samuelson takes a hard look at our barely-there immigration system. Sample quote:

Being brutally candid means recognizing that the huge and largely uncontrolled inflow of unskilled Latino workers into the United States is increasingly sabotaging the assimilation process ... To make immigration succeed, we need (paradoxically) to control immigration.

Samuelson points out that Mexicans now represent a gigantic -- and "historically unprecedented" -- preponderance of immigrants. In 2000, Mexicans were 30 percent of the total, while "in 1920, for example, the two largest immigrant groups --Germans and Italians -- [together] totaled only 24 percent of the immigrant population."

* Also in Newsweek, Julie Scelfo reports on a dramatic increase in teen-girl violence. Sample quote:

According to the FBI's Uniform Crime Report, the number of girls 10 to 17 arrested for aggravated assault has doubled over the last 20 years. The number of boys arrested for weapons possession rose 22 percent between 1983 and 2003, while the number of girls increased by a whopping 125 percent. Today, one in three juveniles arrested for violent crimes is female.

Rather daringly, Scelfo suggests that the increase in girl violence may reflect the influence of feminism, as well as such buttkicking pop-cult icons as Uma Thurman's character in "Kill Bill."



UPDATE: The WashPost reports that "Hispanics accounted for about half the growth in the U.S. population since 2000 ... In the 1990s, they accounted for 40 percent of the country's population increase. From 2000 to 2004, that figure grew to 49 percent."

posted by Michael at June 8, 2005


While it's surely true that teenage girls have gotten more violent, I wouldn't read too much into those seemingly dramatic percentage increases as a relatively modest numerical increase from a low starting point can look very large in percentage terms.

Posted by: Peter on June 9, 2005 01:23 PM

Except for: "Today, one in three juveniles arrested for violent crimes is female." That's an amazing stat.

Posted by: jult52 on June 9, 2005 01:32 PM

Young gals are exposed to a lot more violent behavior in their neighborhoods, homes and media. I don't think feminism has anything to do with it. Being able to protect yourself is a good thing, and should be taught to women and men, while going into a violent rage is wrong whether one is male or female. It seems to be an abberation when we see women behaving aggressively - we are taught and encouraged to use other methods to resolve conflicts. And it certainly should be said that a great majority of men resolve conflicts peacefully. I don't think anyone going around in a blind rage and hurting someone is doing so because of feminism. I'd bet that these 10-17 year olds haven't even heard of it. As for Kill Bill, oh sheesh. 1) 10-17(?) year olds aren't supposed to be WATCHING that movie, and 2)it makes as much sense as blaming whatever latest rash of pointless killlings by men on Bill. I need to put a smiley face here because I am writing in a good natured frame of mind and that doesn't seem to come across in my writing too well. :)

Posted by: bridget on June 9, 2005 03:53 PM

Feminism may be a partial cause of the higher female crime rates, but not for the reasons you'd expect. It may well be that police and prosecutors are more likely to charge females with felonies for action that in the past would've been ignored or carried lesser charges.

Posted by: Peter on June 9, 2005 04:09 PM

As a Texas native, I can tell you that the flow of both legal and illegal Mexican immigrants is out of control. If you are interested, this FAIR link gives a insightful accounting of the actual cost of this problem:

I hear all the arguments in regards to the illegal worker's tax contributions benefitting the legal residents, but the truth is, the burden is growing far heavier than the coffers are.

Our own state governor and legislature have forsaken any attempt at reform or control, and have opted instead to give college tuition benefits to illegal aliens.

This is a tense subject in Texas. I do not wish to look down on anyone or any race for wanting to better themselves, but a strangulation hold on the lifeguard will kill both drowning swimmer and his saviour.

Posted by: Cowtown Pattie on June 9, 2005 05:06 PM

Drowning "victim" not swimmer. If one could swim, drowning is not possible.

Texas culture and history is tightly entwined with her neighbors to the south, and we owe much to their influence along with that of the Germans and other European settlers. However, that being said, I do not wish to be assimilated back into Mexico.

Posted by: Cowtown Pattie on June 9, 2005 05:17 PM

Cowtown Pattie writes: "I hear all the arguments in regards to the illegal worker's tax contributions benefitting the legal residents, but the truth is, the burden is growing far heavier than the coffers are."

But immigrants tend to be very young. Because our tax system redistributes money from the young to the old, immigrants therefore tend to be net tax generators. I'm open on this question but I'd tend to doubt you are right about this.

Posted by: jult52 on June 9, 2005 05:18 PM

Jult52, please look at the accounting figures posted at the link I gave earlier for a little enlightenment on this. I, too, bought the argument that the alien paid more than his own keep in the past, but I don't believe that now.

Posted by: Cowtown Pattie on June 9, 2005 05:20 PM

I tend to be a disciple of Julian Simon and be pretty radically pro-immigration. But. But. The border is porous and lawless. So, I hope the consensus position that will develop will be to allow high levels of LEGAL immigration, coupled with serious, hardcore efforts to control the border. If a wall from the Gulf to the Pacific cost as much per mile as the Israeli wall, we could do it for $9 billion. We could build a few fewer ships and aircraft and get a much bigger increment of national security. The well-guarded checkpoints would be there for all LEGAL commerce and travel. But we have to get a grip on this problem.

Posted by: Lexington Green on June 9, 2005 05:23 PM

I'm curious where you live, Lexington -- betcha you don’t live near a border state. Here in Arizona, immigration is simply out of control. The citizens of Arizona passed some sort of referendum in the past election that was supposed to report/return illegals who received public benefits. Since the past election, only TWO illegals have been questioned, and no one knows the outcome of that questioning.

In this way, the will of ordinary voting citizens is ignored by public "servants." So sadly, I second what Cowtown Pattie above wrote. She’s right: Immigration is a huge, huge mess. Here, public institutions -- libraries, schools, etc. -- are being duplicated by a parallel set of private institutions. Private libraries. Private security. Private schools. Gated communities with private roads. The list of once-public-now-private is endless. Replacing public with private is, essentially, the only recourse people have when their collective will is ignored. Because of uncontrolled immigration, citizens vote with their feet, leaving public institutions. And with their pocketbooks. It won't be long when citizens "defund" so-called "public" institutions, and in doing so, diminish the reach of government.


Posted by: Kris on June 9, 2005 05:56 PM

Immigration should be pretty siimple. If you let in immigrants who are above average, then the nation must improve, if you let in immigrants who are below average, then the nation will logically delince, so its only in the national intrest to let in immigrants who are above the level of the average citizen. If you want cheap labor, then a guest worker program should be set up to supply it legally.

Posted by: zetjintsu on June 9, 2005 07:24 PM

Not sure if this thread is alive now, but I looked at Cowtown Pattie's link (at and just want to note that the analysis doesn't include federal taxes, only state and local taxes. The study indicates that states with a high proportion of illegal immigration do suffer fiscal stress as a result. Immigration may be more of a regional issue than anything else.

Interesting discussion. Thanks.

Posted by: jult52 on June 13, 2005 10:59 AM

Post a comment

Email Address:



Remember your info?