Henry Olsen, an EPPC colleague of Charen's, had his own lame piece, The Democrats’ Stance on Immigration Will Lead to Electoral Disaster, in the Los Angeles Times on March 16, 2017. I emailed Olsen a note, saying in part:
From your article:So far, I've received no response from Olsen. Par for the course.
When it comes to immigration, Democrats need to ask themselves some hard questions. Can they acknowledge that the large number of immigrants in the country illegally, many of whom are relatively unskilled, gives rise to economic competition that harms job and wage prospects for voters who used to be part of their base?Actually the problem you identify with illegal immigration is more from the immigration than from the illegality. As the late conservative columnist Sam Francis wrote, "If the only problem with illegal immigration is that it's illegal, if you're not willing to say mass immigration by itself is a problem, then why should we have any laws against it at all?" And Center for Immigration Studies executive director Mark Krikorian wrote about this point in 2007 in "Legal Good / Illegal Bad?": http://www.nationalreview.com/node/221145/print
In short, the word "illegally" doesn't belong in that sentence you wrote.
Then there's this:
Can they be pro-Muslim immigration without being blind to the fact that the very few Muslim immigrants inclined to terror can undermine public tolerance with just a few fatal attacks?Here's a more obvious prefatory query (and one that has been obvious for years, being renewed by events yesterday in London and today in Brussels): What's the positive case for Muslim immigration? What good do they do for us that can possibly compensate for all the lethal grief they inflict upon Western societies?
But this one-two punch (whiff?) of EPPC scholars cranking out low-grade verbiage on immigration-related subjects—for them, immigration is presumably a policy area that occasionally attracts their attention, whereupon they bloviate a bit and then turn to something else—reminded me of some illuminating words from the libertarian-leaning Bloomberg blogger Megan McArdle:
[C]elebrities are stupid about policy, often breathtakingly so. On the other hand, so is everyone else. You want to hear some really stupid ideas about policy? Grab a group of whip-smart financial wizards, or neurosurgeons, or nuclear physicists, and sit them down for a nice dinner to debate some policy outside their profession. You will find that they are pretty much just as stupid as anyone else, because policy is not about smart. I mean, smart helps. But policy is fundamentally about domain knowledge, and that knowledge is acquired only by spending a great deal of time thinking about a pretty small set of problems. Funnily enough, this is also how one gets good at finance, or neurosurgery, or nuclear physics."Domain knowledge"—that's another terrific term. Regarding immigration, Peter Brimelow has at least 25 years of domain knowledge, Brenda Walker has 21, Steve Sailer and Allan Wall have been writing here since 1999 and 2001, respectively. Et cetera.
[Hey Hollywood, Smugness Isn't a Political Strategy, Bloomberg View, January 11, 2017]
You could say that at VDARE.com, "Domain knowledge on immigration 'R' us!"
But Mona Charen, George Will, Henry Olsen, Paul Krugman, Charles Krauthammer, Thomas Friedman, David Brooks, Hugh Hewitt, ... ? (Also Marco Rubio, Lindsey Graham, Paul Ryan, Nancy Pelosi, ...) When it comes to immigration, they know nuzzing! Count on it.