Birds of Passage – Dave Freer

*This is Sarah.  Sorry to be so late posting this.  I took meds before bed and they zonked me out later than usual.  Yeah, I’m better, but I think the sinus infection has “evolved” into a bout of the common cold.  I’m not sure what it means, and this should be a post for tomorrow, heaven willing, that write best when I’m just too sick to control it, but well enough to write.  I’m approaching the edge of this.  Interestingly, if I weren’t so out of this, I would have written a post on assimilation.  EVEN when you’re motivated, love the principles the country was founded on AND have no one of your culture around, so you can change without reproach is hard.  30 years in I still have to check myself somehow.  No one is going to do it when the incentive is the other way.  Anyway, I’ll get out of the way and let Dave be far more coherent than I am.*

Birds of Passage- Dave Freer

One of the things about migrant birds, welcome or unwelcome, a sign of snow or a sign of spring, or a sign of your crops being flattened, is that eventually they bugger off back to where they came from. Like Arnie, they will be back. But at least they go.

 

And no matter how welcome they were, seeing them leave is often quite welcome too.

 

It’s a very different thing when they come… and never leave. That requires a lot more accommodation by the entire system, and, if it doesn’t work out, and they make a pest of themselves, shotguns.

It’s an image worth keeping in mind when we talk about human migrants, refugees or just… migrants.

 

Now I’ve long held that U.N. definitions of ‘refugee’ is a load of fetid dingo’s kidneys. You’re a refugee when you’ve gone just far enough to escape the strife you and your family were facing. That strife is serious you-will-be-shot-your-daughter-raped if you do not leave now. It’s a slippery slope if you start allowing less rigorous definitions. That means that ‘refugee status’ extends a few hundred meters outside the range of being shot and your daughter raped. That status continues only for as long as the clear and present danger exists. When you can go back, you should.

 

If you can never go back you need to look for a new home. You become a prospective emigrant, facing the same hurdles and challenges as any other emigrant. Country A may feel sorry for the plight of the poor refugees huddled on the border, and allow them to immigrate. But that is not being a refugee. It’s being an immigrant. If you’re going to allow that refugee to leave the 100 yards of safety and come to your country: well it would be bitterly unfair to the native born, to taxpayers and to the legal immigrants to let them immigrate and become citizens and beneficiaries of your country without the same conditions. If you’re merely granting asylum: Their status is temporary, highly conditional, and if the clear and present danger is not there: they go home.

 

I was an immigrant. And like any sensible immigrant, I look at what is happening with horror, and a great deal more harshness that Mutti Merkel or your current American administration. Put simply if the situation gets to shotguns, there’s a lot scatter in that shot and it’s going to hit a lot of unintended targets, including birds like us that settled into that garden well, made it a pleasure to have them. So: sensible immigrants want the influx to stop, yesterday.

 

It’s not a lack of understanding on my part. Or a lack of sympathy on my part. I uprooted my family from a place where long generations had fought for, worked their guts out for, died for, for the dream of a bright future for their descendants, a place where our roots went centuries down, if not millennia. We left because the country had got to 50 murders a day, a lot of which were political and race motivated… and I didn’t see any sign that it could improve. And yes, I had invested twenty years of my life into trying. The long term, with the slow collapse of infrastructure, the growing GINI coefficient, the steady and relentless fall into corruption and bribery, got to point where I looked up and saw my Jewish friends had left, and the Portuguese ones were packing. *

 

Back when I had been a young conscript one of my friends had quietly got on a plane to move to Israel – where he would do more time as a conscript than I would. I was one of the few people who knew he was going, and not coming back. His family didn’t. They were liberal, wealthy and very disapproving of Israel (although non-observantly Jewish). I asked him: Why? I’ve never forgotten what he said.

 

“White South Africans have everything, except for a future. I want a future.”

 

Now you can argue about his choices, and whether he was right. That’s not important. What is important is that he left his past – and I mean left it. Went to live in a country where he knew almost no-one and didn’t speak the language, and was expected to go into military service, and fit in.

 

I appreciate that this is what faces many people in Africa, the Middle East. They feel they have no real future, and, certainly things are much, much better elsewhere, in the West.

 

They’re quite right of course. But there is nothing magical about the geography of those countries. There is no reason South Africa should not be as rich (or richer), as safe (or safer) than Europe, America – or Singapore or Australia or Japan. Those places did not magically provide riches, safety, comfort and infrastructure that works. They were paid for by long generations of hard work, by wars, by blood. Those shaped the cultures of the people that live in them.   THAT, not some magic of geography, makes them good places to live, heavenly compared to most of the Middle East or Africa or from what I gather, much of the Americas south of the US border. Oh and spare me that ‘but the West got rich off labor of Africans and stealing their minerals etc. The labor and the minerals had all been there long, long before ‘the West’ existed. Africa remains full of agricultural and mineral potential, and full of those laborers… It’s got some bright and educated men, all the potential in the world, but it remains a pest-hole, where many – as many as half of the people — dream of leaving, of going to Europe or America.

 

Unfortunately… the place they go won’t automatically make them rich. But that is not what they want to believe. Remember, to average African the US or Europe is what he’s seen on the movies. And yes, he has seen movies. The fact that single working mothers do NOT live in luxurious multi-bed mansions – and never actually seem to work — but live the good life, is just not believed. It’s a bit like the Gold Rush. No-one believes they won’t get rich and live in – relative to their present circumstances – idle luxury. And maybe – because present circumstances really suck – that is true. Besides Cousin Achmed has money to burn when he comes home. And when you ask him about work he’s kinda vague.

 

The problem is that there is an expectation. Just like those hopefuls going to find gold in California – you can tell them, but they won’t believe you.

 

And they’ve learned the levers to pull. They’ve learned how to game Western sentiment, Western mores and Western idealism. That lever, I am afraid is “refugee” – which is hell on the refugee who really can never go home. Who doesn’t do this for a better life… he just wants himself, his wife and kids safe. SAFE. Not being raped, not being shot at.

 

It’s rather like the cry ‘rape’. If we’re to protect rape victims or refugees, and I believe we should — as do most of us – then if and when someone makes a fake claim, it’s not just enough to say ‘off you go home then’. If you want to protect real victims and the sympathy and support they get in future, you have deal with abuse. For the sake of all future victims, you have to deal with it hard.

 

This idea seems to have passed everyone by. It’s important, dammit! This is not the last time anyone will need to flee a war zone. But unless this fixed it may be last time that anyone can.

 

Going back to the birds and the shotguns… someone posted ‘this is what you can do if Syrian Refugees settle in your area – take them baby-clothes, shoes etc. You want to be the Good Samaritan. He’s the hero in the story.’ Well… no. Oh, the Good Samaritan is the good guy – he’s helping the beaten and robbed guy survive. Live to live happily ever after. So what IS going to help that refugee (assuming he or she is a refugee) survive, learn to live happily ever after?

 

It’s not baby clothes. Or shoes.

 

It’s the one thing no one has given to migrants for the last forty years. Because some dumbasses decided they’d be better off without this essential, which is all they need, but might hurt their feelings. Huh. Much better to screw their lives up, and their kids, and possibly the lives of others and their refuge… than the bad-feelz for a few days.

 

It’s what, I promise you, they need far, far more than anything else. I have reason to know, it worked incredibly well for us – to point where when we became citizens of Australia – we had more than 1/5 of the entire adult population of the Island at the ceremony to celebrate with us – and one hell of a party. It’s why we’re happy, settled love the place we’re in, and have a huge network of friends here.

 

It comes down to four letters, and it’s the best thing you can ever, ever give migrant, or a refugee: Simple advice. Other, more material things – food, shelter, even baby clothes — follow on it. I must thank Inga, the Australian who gave it to us. She came to Australia as a refugee after WW2 from East Germany. She became one of our best friends, until she passed away, survived by three strong sons, a daughter, grandchildren and even a great grandchild. She survived, and did pretty well at the ‘happily ever after’ bit.

 

Just four letters (Ok, Inga just gave me the first two. I worked the other two out)

 

FIFO

 

Fit In, or Fuck Off

 

It’s simple, cheap, and… not easy. But two out of three ain’t bad. And you know what? It works. There are millions and millions of historical examples. Most of us carry the mixed up genes of those examples.

 

It’s the one thing those refugees really need. It’s the one thing that will make sure that the West is a refuge, is a place they find that ‘gold’, is the place where their kids do not turn into terrorists.

 

It’s the one thing no one is giving them.

 

FIFO

 

*There’s a saying back in Africa: ‘When the Jews go, it’s time to go. When the Portuguese go, it’s already too late.’ It’s a common saying, don’t ask me precisely what it means or where it is from… Maybe the former have, you might say, many generations of selection for surviving persecutions and pogroms. Besides, they tend to be bright. The Portuguese? I dunno. Maybe that because that’s where the Moors stopped, or were stopped, or because they survived various other attempts to destroy them. Or maybe they have predilection to obstinacy and optimism, genetic or otherwise – that could go a long way to explaining Sarah Hoyt and Larry Correia.

201 responses to “Birds of Passage – Dave Freer

    • Based on the two page promo of ‘City on Fire’, I wouldn’t pay $6.99. Much less a million.

    • A $2M advance for a first novel? I’d really like to believe there was some nepotism or other outright corruption involved there. It would still be bad, but at least it would make perfect sense.

  1. According to the MSM South Africa is a great place to be. I always found that suspicious.

    • My parents visited there in 1974, spending time with the parents of a fellow medical resident. It was lovely, but already they sensed the potential for trouble: all the younger people (whites under age 35) were talking about leaving. They then went to Rhodesia, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, and understood why.

      A friend of mine’s partner is from the Cape Town area. They visited over last Christmas and had a delightful time but Partner has no desire to return there to live and is working hard toward US citizenship.

    • In terms of being a beautiful place with interesting wildlife – true. In most other senses – false.

      • BobtheRegisterredFool

        But they used to have white-free safer spaces, like all the best people say we should have here.

        I know Pete Grant says those are harmful, but he is racist for saying that foreign policy problems can’t simply be mass murdered away.

        American history teaches us that genocide is perfectly feasible, and can fully pacify a neighboring population. It also tells us that we get bored and wander off if we can successfully pacify one by other means. Almost like mass murder is no fun and akin to burning money.

      • one of the fun times I recall working in a bicycle shop in New Orleans was when we got a rare South African girl come in, and even rarer, she was not white.
        What made it fun was one of our more hippy types mentioned how unjust it was for poor Nelson to be held for no reason like that, and how he was supporting his release.
        She got rather mad, said as far as she was concerned he needed to be shot in the head and left for carrion. A sister of hers had been killed by an attack he planned, and her extended family suffered long and hard for being against tactics and politics of the ANC.
        He seemed boggled that there were black people not in 100% support of Nelson and the ANC’s socialist/communist policies.
        Sorta like today’s leftoids who find a black person who is a Conservative Republican or Libertarian.
        Whenever she came back in for servicing her bike, he avoided her, but he did apologize for upsetting her.

    • Call for Kim du Toit! Mr. du Toit, please come to the white courtesy telephone, please.

    • I’ve known more than one person who basically fled South Africa in the night to avoid being shot. Their crime? Insufficient melanin.

  2. I have no doubt Gov. Moonbeam will enthusiastically take all 10,000 refugees or as many as Pres. O wants to take without vetting. No Christian Syrians need apply.

    • He’s gonna have to fight our own esteemed Governor Lapdog (Tom Wolfe. See what I did there? 😉 ), who says that the Keystone State will fully cooperate with the FedGov’s efforts to locate and house refugees. And the mayor of “my” city (we live in the next county south, so outside his jur’diction but still damn close) has agreed to cooperate fully with Governer Lapdog and is opening the city’s doors to the “refugees.”

      And the rest of the Raptor Clan *still* thinks I’m crazy for wanting a rifle.

  3. This is why I support making English the official language of the US. You are not going to be successful in this country unless you have a functional command of English. If it’s the official language and a requirement for naturalization, we have an obligation to teach it as part of the immigration process. That makes the immigrants much less dependent on facilitators and community organizers, and makes it easier for the entire political spectrum to appeal to new citizens without pandering (Jeb, I’m looking at you).

    • Racist. Or something.

    • scott2harrison

      I like the thought, but I fear that it is impractical for the same reason that illiteracy can no longer be used to deny the vote. Especially if citizens are held to the same standard as newcomers.

      • While the Constitution grants everyone over 18 the right to vote, nobody has the right to become a US citizen (yet, get another Prog on the Supreme Court and I guarantee that will change) so Congress has pretty broad latitude in setting the requirements. We already have naturalized citizens who have a better knowledge of civics than natural-born citizens.

        • scott2harrison

          You are mistaken about that. The Constitution does not grant anyone the “right” to vote. Later ammendments just made it unconstitutional to deny the vote for certain reasons such as race or sex. This then morphed into making any test that disproportionatly excluded the special groups unconstitutional as well.

          • Given that the tests in question were blatantly designed to do so, one finds it difficult to come up with any other solution.
            Now, speaking personally, one thing that might work would be administration of the citizenship test before you can register to vote.

            • I would consider settling for administration of the test before an adult can receive government benefits.

            • Yes, I understand the old test for blacks was to give them a Hebrew bible to read, and then waxed paper and a ball-point pen to prove they can write.

              • Said in (perhaps) jest. One test I saw as an “example” of how hard it was to pass relied on a heavy dose of regionalism. A literate life-long New Yorker would have had difficulty, but not a literate Southerner.

                The problem was that in at least one state just about every white was except from the test. That’s because the law waived the test for descendants of Confederate veterans. This is every significant, for even in the era after reading tests, I saw illiterate white voters who could only sign an “X” by their name. Were they residents of that state, they wouldn’t have had to take the literacy test, but a black resident would. That was how that one state rigged the test to limit black voters.

            • I’d prefer hard tests for wanna-be politicians to pass, before they run for office.

          • Sure it does, voting is a civil right, not a natural right, so the Constitution lays out who has that right and who doesn’t.

            • The original Constitution lays that off on the states, to establish time, manner, and place.

              What’s truly funny is if you read the 14th Amendment, it doesn’t actually prevent such things as literacy tests, as long as everyone has to take them and they are all graded to the same standard, nor poll taxes, as long as everyone has to pay them. Those cases probably represent the first examples of “disparate impact” used in the legal system, helped along because Democrats were so blatant about not applying the same standards.

              • Poll taxes are forbidden by 24th Amendment.

                As for a test, a fair and easily administered test that isn’t subject to cheating and doesn’t significantly delay the voting process is non-trivial.

    • Yep. If you can’t talk to people, how do you ever get to know them?

      • Or trade with them. There’s a reason pidgins are centered around trading posts.

        • heh, todays English is Pidgin.

          • But Ebonics sounds more advanced? It blows my mind that this is considered a step forward.

          • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

            H. Beam Piper (IIRC) defined English as the result of French soldiers trying to get dates with Saxon barmaids. [Wink]

            Interestingly, there’s some evidence for Celtic elements entering Saxon English long before the French arrived.

            Of course, after that there were the Danes invading England with resulting changes to Saxon English. [Smile]

    • I got a phishing email today, allegedly from ISP. I was pretty sure it was a scam, but all the words were actually properly spelled and the grammar was acceptable.
      Two minutes of chat, from my browser’s link not theirs in the email confirmed it. Lady I spoke with said she herself got one yesterday 😦

    • The chick who is a native speaker of Portuguese agrees.

    • But if immigrants develop a command of English think of all the intermediaries, the spokespersons for oppressed persons races, the Speakers for the Voiceless, that will be put out of work, denied their hard-earned commissions for representing these sad, poor, oppressed souls! It has been bad enough that Jesse Jackson had to find (semi-)honest jobs for his kids rather than turning over the family business — you want to inflict such trauma on everybody milking those cows?

      • What about my trauma over the ‘press 1 for English’?

      • Yes. And I will enjoy every minute of it. With relish. And horseradish. And good mustard, the kind with the seeds in it.

        • SheSellsSeashells

          We have Mustard Wars going on in our house at the moment. My father wants the neon yellow stuff, my 9-year-old prefers Dijon for her sandwiches, thankyouverymuch, my husband could care less as long as there is SOMETHING on there, and I like the seedy kind. My poor fridge can’t take it.

          • Semi-sweet Bavarian all the way (unless I’m making deviled eggs or potato salad, then I’ll use the cheap yellow stuff.)

            • The sandwich selects the mustard. Only a boor would apply the same mustard to a sweet ham as a country ham or Black Forest cure. Just so does one use different mustards for a roast chicken sandwich as a grilled chicken as a fried chicken sandwich. Nor would you smear the same mustard on a cheddar cheese sandwich as you would put on provolone or swiss. The sandwich selects the mustard.

              Corn dogs are cheap yellow mustard all the way down to the stick; after that it is each to his or her own.

              • SheSellsSeashells

                I was all for mustard on my grilled cheeses until I discovered the wonders of sweet cheddar, provolone and fresh sage leaves. Oh. My. Lord. (Then I tried the above combination on a pretzel bun and ascended directly unto heaven. I am dictating this message through an accommodating medium.)

              • Only a boor would apply the same mustard to a sweet ham as a country ham or Black Forest cure.

                True. I think I’m down to about 7 different mustards in the house at the moment. I can’t remember the name, but there was a very nice mustard that came in earthenware crocks with a “shove in to seal” plastic lid. It was available in three varieties, as I recall – the regular variety, which was a sort of Dijon, a firehouse variety, which had a red lid, and a peppercorn variety with a green lid. I’ve save a few of the crocks, but they don’t have labels anymore.

        • The Other Sean

          A good deli mustard will have a little bit of seed to it, as well as some horseradish.

  4. I find that assimilation, even when born into a culture, is easier for some than others. With luck you find a place to land where your oddities are tolerated. With great luck, they may even be encouraged.

    • You know, RES — if you WANT them encouraged, it is dead easy. You 1)pick on a place where your culture is not what the locals consider repulsive – and learn theirs so you know what they find repulsive. 2) Try hard to fit into theirs – and because people LIKE that, they like you and they start thinking your oddities/culture might be interesting/cool. I’ve cooked more traditional South African food since we’ve been here than I have in all the years I lived in the country. Taught songs. Been asked a myriad questions. And yes, a few things (the way we put bait on the hook in the old country) have now become part of what many people do, But the phrase ‘This is the way we did it in South Africa’ is forever banned.

      • What? You didn’t immediately demand they remove the crosses from their churches and stop drinking beer and eating pork-sausages on their national holiday? Who could possibly not take such demands as a sign of assimilation?

        • I would have, Donald, except they cast me to play Jesus in the 10 stations of the cross. And the pork thing? does that involve bacon? Because if it does I’m moving. Beer and wine and bacon sandwiches should be served at customs, never mind customarily.

          • Yes, every thing is better with bacon. And bacon with bacon is tops. Now sausages can be a little strange, but considering Hot Dogs, Americans have no room to complain. (Hot Dogs are also better with bacon wrapped around them).

            • Years ago I recall visiting a hot dog joint in Boston which featured an all beef kosher frank, wrapped in bacon and served on a bun with melted cheese.

              You could order from the menu by requesting a Blasphemy.

              • I want a restaurant with pork lunch specials every Ramadan.

                MMMMMMM bacon!

                • Since Muslims fast during the day, that shouldn’t be terribly offensive. Actually, it would make for an excellent screening tool. Anyone who protests must either be ignorant of Ramadan traditions and/or looking for reasons to be offended. If the protester is Muslim we can rule out ignorance, so he’s looking for reasons to hate those around him, which means he is probably on the road to radicalism.

              • My brother had the privilege of eating a frank from Fenway park. But that is probably a microaggression anymore.
                Bacon wrapped kosher frank with cheese – sounds more like ‘Bliss’ to me.

      • I do say “this is how we did it in Portugal” when teaching someone to cook a dish that requires, say, specialized hardware (cataplana for ex) This is usually the prelude to figuring out how to achieve the same effect without it. BUT other than that — meh. I’m American. I just took the long route to get here.

        • Sarah, there’s a bumper sticker here in Texas: “I wasn’t born in Texas, but I got here as fast as I could.”

          Being an American is much the same thing. It’s a choice, which is why a lot of us refer to the Left as TWANLOCs: Those Who Are No Longer Our Countrymen. Sam Adams had it right.

      • You can say that, but I will be damned if I give up reading SF/F and instead start following college football. Nor am I willing to give up rooting against both Chapel Hill and Duke’s basketball teams!

        I will allow that BBQ should be pork in a tomato sauce, but that is as far as I go. I will not go so far as to refuse it in vinegar or even using beef or chicken. Try it with goat, mutton or pigeon and I am gone.

        And I agree that “this is the way we did it where I came from” is not only a phrase that should be banned but one that merits sending every dam Yankee who utters it packing.

        • As a native Texan, I found that brining pork overnight in apple cider vinegar brine makes it moist and tasty after grilling. Your choice of sauce later. But I learned how to cook on the pit from one of the best Prohibition era moonshiners using mesquite coals decades before the restaurants “discovered” it.

          Residing in North Texas, I’m sometimes appalled at the folks in the area, but then I realize, 65% of them aren’t old school natives. And the ones that bitch about the weather have learned to STFU, when I ask them “Why are you here?”

          • Question: What kind of pit?

            A. Coals in trench in the ground.
            B. Open hearth with coals shoveled beneath the grill.
            C. Closed brick oven that cooks by indirect heat. Grill sits over a drip pan, and two large metal doors over the top.
            D. None of the above.

            • Mostly A. done West Texas style.

              A separate fire to generate coals, which are shoveled into one side of a long metal pit which is directly on a trench in the dirt. Meat, usually brisket or Boston butt, was sopped periodically to stay moist, but were at the far side of the pit so the heat was indirect.

              Later experiments included brining of pork loin and tenderloin and variations like finishing in foil to preserve moisture. The vinegar brine came from relatives in the south eastern states.

          • “Why are you here?”

            “Weather modification experiments.” }:o)

          • I work in a warehouse with no good cooling and folks whine about how hot it is (if it is over 100 outside the warehouse gets close to 100 inside … at least I don’t make 145 degree reactions any longer). I worked in one in New Orleans (well, Kenner) that got to 120 in the spots under the skylights, and you had that lovely ultra-high humidity on top of that. I prefer the just under 100 and lower humidity of the DFW area, thankyouverymuch.
            Gee, just wait till I get moved to Marinette/Menominee and they whine about the heat there! (I’ll try to keep my mouth shut about the cold. I did grow up in that neck of the woods)

            • I had a Texas dwelling relative who would claim that the problem with Wisconsin was that it only had three seasons, “July, August, and Winter.”

              My Texas born and raised (I was only born there, grew up in WI) $HOUSEMATE opines that it gets cold in southern MN in September and doesn’t react well to my query of, “What are you gonna do when it gets cold?” The reply is usually, “Whaddayamean ‘gets’?” Of course when said $HOUSEMATE claims the weather is “comfy” I am likely to play ‘Too Darn Hot’. Loudly.

              • Hey, we had Spring when I was a kid (before all that global warmening schtuph)
                we called it June.

              • I spent three winters working a few miles south of the Lutefisk Line (the MN border). I’d never seen entire counties get cabin fever before. It was a little scary. I also got a bit tired of carrying snow around the side of the buildings because the piles got too high for me to just toss the snow on top of them. I won’t moan about snow and cold too much. Ice storms, on the other paw . . . .

            • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

              One winter I was living in Columbus Georgia and people were complaining about the cold.

              For somebody born & raised in Illinois, it was “light-jacket” weather. [Very Big Grin]

              • It’s a matter of body type and what you’re acclimated to. We moved from England to Texas (near San Antonio) when I was 12, and the first winter, I was still in shirtsleeves when everyone around me was bundled up.

                After becoming acclimated to Texas, I couldn’t take the cold anymore. Now that I’m acclimated to Denver, I’m again in shirtsleeves when many others bundle up. Snow is “light jacket” weather, usually. When I’m wearing a jacket and gloves, one of my co-workers is still wearing t-shirt, shorts, and sandals.

                If I lose another ten pounds, I’ll be bundling up at higher temperatures than I do now. It’ll be a worthwhile tradeoff, actually – I’ll get more use out of my sweaters and sweatshirts. Currently, I hardly ever seem to need them.

  5. Thank for expressing one of my main issues with this whole mess–the refugees have other places to go besides the United States, and the money we will spend on getting them here could be put to better use either helping the Europeans dealing with their refugee issues, or the Turks, Lebanese, and Jordanians dealing with the massive strains put on their society.
    Sorry, folks, but ISIS is not the Nazis, and are not going to overrun Europe any time soon.

  6. They are not refugees, they are invaders. Note that 80% are men of military age, not the old, sick and women with children of normal refugee movements.

    “One day, millions of men will leave the Southern Hemisphere to go to the Northern Hemisphere. And they will not go there as friends. Because they will go there to conquer it. And they will conquer it with their sons. The wombs of our women will give us victory” – Houari Boumedienne, president of Algeria at the United Nations in 1974

  7. Sarah, there are only 828 bones, organs and muscles in the human body. Sooner or later, you have to post something. *g*

  8. Reblogged this on The Arts Mechanical and commented:
    FIFO. We should remember here in the US that we want Americans, not hyphens.

    • FIFO … exactly. Make the effort, learn the language, however imperfectly, insist that your children also make the effort, and leave the Old Country behind. There is a REASON it is called the Old Country. It’s the one you left behind, carrying only a few things, habits of mind, and possessions with you.

      I actually worked resettling refugees, through a church and community volunteer association. We resettled Vietnamese refugees, following the fall of South Vietnam in 1975. And yes — these were middle-class, mostly educated people, mortally afraid of the Viet Cong and North Viets, who had never given any indication of feeling merciful towards the defeated Viets. And so, the South Vietnamese with any sense of self-preservation for themselves and their families legged in in 1975, on anything that would float or fly.

      There was a coordinating national church organization coordinating it all – it wasn’t at that point the government-grant corrupted entity that it seems to be presently. My church clubbed together with a couple of other churches, the local Rotary and Lions club, and reckoned on how many refugees we could provide for in our community, and they sent to us three small families and three unattached young men. We found apartments or houses for the families, and farmed out the young men to host families — mine was one of them. It was all very hands-on, very personal. We helped them find jobs, schooling — everything. And it worked out well, in the main. The largest family, and the three young men — they wanted to fit in, to be a part. The boy who lived with us for a year stayed in touch for decades afterwards. He eventually gravitated to Houston and a career as a mechanic for the county sheriff’s department, married a nice Vietnamese girl and sent his oldest son to Rice University. They fit in with a vengeance.

      But I likely won’t be volunteering again for something like this — unless it is Christian or Yazidi refugees welcomed to the US, which doesn’t seem to be any priority of this administration. It’s my understanding that the resettlement org did the same thing with the Somali refugees, fifteen or twenty years later … and all they have gotten for their earnest efforts is a bunch of hostile, nasty, arrogant Muslims, whose second-gens are prone to return to the Old Country to fight for ISIS/ISIL, et al. Muslim refugees … the Muslim countries can bloody well welcome them, I’m done.

      • …and leave the Old Country behind.

        I have decidedly Germanic name out in the Real World, which has various pronunciations or approximations in the USA. Growing up, I heard about all of them. I’m told my grandfather would correct anyone using anything other than the most Americanized variant – which is the default I use. Then, he was 7 or 8 when the US entered WWI and the excessive anti-German backlash happened – though that might have been mitigated some by being in an area largely settled of those of German ancestry.

        But note that: “of German ancestry.” Americans of German ancestry, NOT German-Americans. What tiny smattering of the German language I know I learned in school, not at home. Everybody spoke English.

      • Celia – it’s ‘want to fit in’ – if they have that it can be done. If they want their own ways, in your or my country, it can’t.

        • Indeed. This is why, at the literacy center where my mother worked, the one Yankee white woman was the odd one out, and not any of the southern black folks. Or my mother, point of fact.

          The one lady, she came down (and you could tell that’s how she thought of it- “came down”) to teach the poor little brown people how to read. She didn’t get that it was the drug problem, the fatherless homes, and whatall that was the issue. That was why Shorty and Squeaky started the program, to help the kids whose parents couldn’t be arsed to deal with it themselves. It was a real problem, and needed a solution.

          She didn’t try to “fit in” any way at all- and, being here on her own, it a trifle difficult for her. Not so bad in the great scheme of things, now, we saw her fed and she had a roof and all- but from the complaints about how things were never how they were back home were constant. And her attempts to make things just like they were back home tended to be as comical as they were impractical (this was the early 80s, to her vegetarianism was somewhat forward thinking- to her and her like).

          Long story short, she left, leaving the whole program to be picked up by the folks who needed it to run right anyway. I was a slow learner as a kid, always apt to be climbing trees or getting into some trouble or other. If not for my mother’s determination and the folks there, I’d like as not have taken much longer to learn to read, let alone discover a love of learning new things. But that wouldn’t have happened, had things gone the old Yank lady’s way… Wrong culture, and no attempt at integration or interpretation.

          • I have noticed that while there are some differences between southern black and southern white cultures, they are amazingly similar and actually get along with each other quite well. One year for ‘Black History Month’, the menu featured ‘soul food’. I mentioned to a black friend that they could call it that, but really, all the stuff on the menu was stuff white people loved to eat (I did admit I don’t like collard greens).

      • It’s one thing to recall the customs of the Old Country, another to cling to them.

        • ah, even clinging, it depends on how insular or not you are, or if you want to force others into your customs whether they want it or not. Living in N.O. I knew some of the mentioned Vietnamese folks, the older set clung to the old country, but most were fine with what we do here, and while many would gladly go back home if it wouldn’t be a short painful situation, they are also happy to stay here and feed folk good Pho (or be mechanics, fisherman, and shrimpers). They also are not trying to force the rest of us to accommodate them, or follow their customs.

  9. Sarah, you hint at a column on assimiliation, and that reminds me of an Irish story.

    An Irish-American has made the pilgrimage to the Old Sod, and is walking along a country road with his native cousin.

    They round a bend and there on a hill they see a magnificent mansion, gleaming white in the sunlight, probably been there since before Victoria.

    The American looks up and says, “By God, someday I’ll have me a house like that!”

    The Irishman looks up says, “By God, someday I’ll get the bastard who lives in that house!

    The problem for the Irishman, of course, is that there will always be more Irishmen than fine mansions. If the Irishman is not to be disappointed of his dream, a lot of other people will be.

    The Irishman has no desire to be assimiliated; no ambition to create anything glorious of his own. He simply wants the glorious thing someone else already has, and will be bitterly angry when he doesn’t get it. Worse, in his bitterness he will probably create an entire generation of even more bitterly angry wanters prepared to get him (“the bastard!”) for what he has…

    • William O. B'Livion

      What most people don’t get ’bout that joke is that the if mansion *had* been there since before Victoria, the original owners of that mansion were likely the ones behind the potato(e) famine, the forced transportation and the deliberate reduction of the Irish population in the 1800s.

      So while the *current* owners might not be in the lineage, well, old hatreds die hard.

      BTW, the version of that joke I heard in the early 90s was an American and a Russian. Which largely carries the same sentiments.

  10. My first, lasting impression of South Africans was aboard a trans-Atlantic cruise. While I understand Tasmania is home for many expatriates, this group, Doctors and Nurses, apparently found a new home in the sick-bay of a Princess’ cruise ship.
    I had Ludwig’s Angina, a potentially lethal infection. More than a cruise ship sick-bay can handle. For two days and the longest night of my life, I was in their exceptional care, and their incredible skill. (Although the shaving of my beard with 6 dull pink disposable razors is another story, but we still muddled through.) The Doctor had the ship diverted to Bermuda for medical evacuation. My two days pale in comparison to a brief moment on shore. Caro, a tall statuesque red-head, accompanied the hospital boat to shore with an oxygen tank, just in case. Once there, she gave my Father a hug that still leaves him speechless when he remembers.
    Australia was a wonderful place to visit. The natives are friendly and welcoming. Our cruise, Australia to New Zealand, was mostly Australians on board and they are wonderful ship-mates except that the ship was out of canned beer the last 2 days of the cruise (never happened before).
    Australia was Continent #6 for me. The one remaining? (Antarctica was #5) Africa. Problem there doesn’t seem to be any place safe to visit in Africa. While on board, the Aussies had their ‘adopted South African’ in tow, and he still runs tours of South Africa. He said it was ‘safe enough as long as you stay in groups of 20 or more.’
    Dave’s advice is also good for darn Yankees coming South. I know Colorado didn’t follow that advice, and look what the Californians have done to that once delightful state.

    • Not just Colorado. I’m astonished by the number of former Californians who move to Arizona and start voting for the same stuff that made them leave California in the first place.

      Of course, living in Baja Arizona things might be skewed.

      • I left one state because of the culture imported from California, I make a conscious effort to not do the same to my adopted state. I still catch myself saying, “where I come from, they do it this way.” Sometimes it IS a better way, but usually there is a reason that they don’t ‘do it that way’ here.

    • I’m glad I saw South Africa in the eighties. I’d like to make it to OZ someday to visit a reclusive writer in a remote island…

      • I understand the farther south you go, the crazier they get.
        Does anyone know how they are doing with the Devil Facial Tumor Disease? When I was there, they were afraid the only survivors would be in the northern hemisphere’s zoos. 😦

    • Donald – you come across the song about ‘the pub with no beer’? :-). That’s an Australian National disaster you talk so blythely about!

      South Africa is safe enough… with a local who knows the places to stay away from. But even then: safety is relative.

      • South Africa is safe enough… with a local who knows the places to stay away from. But even then: safety is relative.

        I could say the same about Baltimore, Washington DC and several other major American cities.

      • The ship still had beer on tap, just none for you in your cabin. In Melbourne while visiting a kangaroo preserve, I asked our guide (the sweetest lady on the planet), if we were going to see a Kookaburra. I then sang her the song, and she wondered why on earth they would teach an American that song in elementary school.
        I googled the lyrics. I distinctly remember the verse ending ‘Gay, your life must be.’ and notice that it is now, ‘Sing your song for me.’ Is there nothing sacred to Orwell’s 1984 guidebook followers?

        • I sang the unchanged (unBowdlerized?) verses back in the day.

        • I’ve got a few kookaburra photos I took in a botanical garden. I’d have to find the photos to know which city it was in. I need to look through the photos, anyway – I’ve been meaning to post a photo or two of the Batman memorial.

  11. I wonder just how much of the current immigrant non-assimilation is the fault of the Left? In an odd way, the multicultural push by social workers, teachers, government officials and others insulates and isolates the immigrants, preventing them from being able to assimilate into the host culture.
    Heck, even the phrase “assimilate into the host culture” is enough to give the Left the heebie jeebies.

    • Because they must teach the host culture the many, mutlitudinous ways and things they are doing WRONG, WRONG, WRONG, you stupid indigenes!

    • Maybe it’s because we’re in flyover country, but here we just don’t see immigrant non-assimilation. That said, there’s different degrees of assimilation.

      • Amarillo has more of a problem, because the city has the highest number of refugees per capita in the US. Burmese, Nigerian, Somali, Kurds, Latin America, you name it. The Vietnamese and others have assimilated pretty well.

        • IF (and this is a big if) the refugees – especially the assimilated who want to be there realize that the newcomers are gonna upset THEIR apple-cart, I expect they’ll be like the black guy who wanted to join the KKK — a lot more vicious than just non-migrants. The worst racists in South Africa were always foreigners (who often started as idealists condemning the locals as racists…)

          • “The worst racists in South Africa were always foreigners (who often started as idealists condemning the locals as racists…)”

            Seen that even in this country: someone who’s from a part of the country where blacks or Hispanics or some other SJW favored minority group aren’t common, who have assigned them as some form of Rosseau’s “noble savage”, and finds out on closer inspection that they’re people like any one else: some good, some bad, and most just average.

          • I find that in myself, not in being racist, but in somewhat rabidly defending the culture and ways of my adopted home, against any and all that would either a) move here and wish to change it to like where they were from or b) not live here, but attempt to change the culture of the locals anyways.

    • It also gives them an excuse to fail. Even I had to realize that I shouldn’t seize such excuses, and if I did I’d never get anywhere.

    • BobtheRegisterredFool

      If a bunch of Southern “Good Ol’ Boys” who don’t mean it that way cannot redeem a Confederate flag, then modern Mexicans cannot redeem that symbol of the Aztec Triple Alliance.

      It is inconsistent of the left to condemn the one, and celebrate the other.

      I hear they sell Amaranth in stores. I am triggered, on account of the left winged hummingbird.

  12. I went to college with Iranians. Like every other foreign student, they were in the US to get an education. That in itself was interesting – more than a few dressed like Happy Days for a few weeks. Sometimes it was amusing, such as when an Iranian said to this big guy we called Truck “In my country no one would dare talk to me this way.” And Truck jabbed a massive finger toward the chair and said “You’re in American now, son. SIT DOWN.”

    Toward the end of a quarter, one told me he wasn’t going back. This was after the overthrow of the Shah, and he said his father and brother had been shot. His intent was to apply for asylum and citizenship. Never found out if he succeeded.

    He was one of those who, if they went back, would probably die. Like some Vietnamese who came here, like Cubans who came before them, like the doctor from Lithuania, like countless others.I can’t say they thought the streets were paved with gold, but they knew they’d be able to breath.

    If he did, I doubt anyone told him FIFO. Don’t think anyone in America was told FIFO. But naturalized citizens wanted to fit in. One was a language professor who was the most patriotic American I’ve ever met. And every other naturalized American I’ve met wanted to fit in as much as possible. That was the point: They wanted to be Americans.

    It’s arguable that people fleeing war zones could be killed if they stayed, and that would classify them as refugees. Whether or not that situation is permanent raises questions. Sometimes things quiet down and it’s safe to go home; sometimes, like that Iranian, they can never go back.

    Then there’s cases such as the Christian Syrians who the US deported because of questionable documents, and when you look at the case the government does seem to have a point. Then you find out that the Justice Department refused to prosecute Muslim Syrians who also came up through Mexico and who were held for questionable use of a passport. I don’t wish ISIL on anyone, but who do you think will have an easier time of it? A Muslim who’s sent back or a Christian? We already know what ISIL does to Christians.

    Make of it what you will. Didn’t intend to bring in a soap box. Just my two cents.

    • Keep in mind that the same government which decries failures in gun background checks is assuring us they can vet refugees!


      HT: Power Line “Week in pictures”

      • op cit.


        If only those performing our refugee background checks were half so competent.

        I wager the Feds will be paying handsome fees to “pro bono” lawyers to represent every “refugee’ and ensure no invidious discriminatioin is allowed.

    • Back in 1969 I took a course in Psychology (as a prep for a masters) while I was in the Air Force. Our teacher was about my age and was married to another AF officer. She would constantly say,” We can hardly wait until we can leave THIS COUNTRY and go to live in Iran.” Then she would launch into a soliloquy about how great Iran was and how restrictive the US was. About that time I switched off my attention and let her ramble. I wonder how that turned out.

      • Huh. One of my uncles trained USAAF and USAF pilots, and from WWII onward this included allies. Some of them were Iranian. His stories of how they thought were . . . different. Only saw a little of that in those I met.

      • There were a lot of Iranian students in Mechanical Engineering at UT Austin back in the late 70’s. Also a LOT of Arabs. Most of them, especially the Arabs had a tendency to cheat on tests, and those were the morons who would be going back home after they graduated. The ones who did not were the guys who knew what it would take to succeed here.

        It was easy to spot the Iranians who wanted to stay in the spring of 1979. After the Shah was overthrown, the ones who were going back grew beards and carried a copy of the koran with them all the time. They became insufferable pricks. I got stuck with two of them as lab partners in an instrumentation class. I finally got permission from the TA to go off on my own, as those two never did anything.

        • We didn’t see any of the latter. However, that might have been due to the flag incident. Some burned an American flag on campus, and, when no one did anything about it right then, thought they could do as they pleased. The students who met them off-campus and showed them the error of their ways changed that opinion. In a few months some Iranians were telling people they were Saudis.

    • When I was stationed in New London, the US was giving some of the old diesel subs to the Iranians. This was before the Shah was deposed. The Iranian officers that were there for training were, as a group, some of the most unpleasant and arrogant … well, let’s just leave it at that.

      • Which is pretty much the way Flint and Drake portrayed the Persians (Iranians) in the Belisarius books.

  13. Locally we are in a sanctuary city — it’s posted although I am sure the refugees cannot read the signs. These invaders swagger about our streets and parks, obstructing traffic, leaving crap all over the place, threatening small children and pets. The people running this city see no problems with this situation, but I say let the Canadians keep their demmed geese in Canada!

  14. It has been a while since I read much on the topic, but from what I recall the principle work of economist Hernando de Soto (auothor of The Mystery of Capital) was examination of the reasons the United States, in particular and European Culture in particular had so far out-stripped the economies of Latin America, Africa and Asia. Apparently, property rights make a difference. Who nu?

    From Wiki:

    The main message of de Soto’s work and writings is that no nation can have a strong market economy without adequate participation in an information framework that records ownership of property and other economic information. Unreported, unrecorded economic activity results in many small entrepreneurs who lack legal ownership of their property, making it difficult for them to obtain credit, sell the business, or expand. They cannot seek legal remedies to business conflicts in court, since they do not have legal ownership. Lack of information on income prevents governments from collecting taxes and acting for the public welfare.

    [SNIP]

    De Soto argued that Piketty’s statistics ignore the 90 per cent of the world population that lives in developing countries and former Soviet states, whose inhabitants produce and hold their capital in the informal sector.[35] Furthermore, he states that his institute’s global research proves that most people actually want more rather than less capital. Finally, he argues that the wars against capital, which Piketty claims are coming, have already begun under Europe’s nose in the form of the Arab Spring in the Middle East and North Africa.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hernando_de_Soto_Polar#Main_thesis

    Others, who view capital as a public good, to be dispensed according to enlightened public policies, have not been especially supportive of de Soto; rumours are that Paul Krugman has named his cat de Soto so that when he kicks that cat he can curse appropriately.

    • Oops – the portion of the preceding starting “Others, who view capital as a public good …” was supposed to be an end blockquote and not a nested one. My deepest regrets.

    • This is why I find anarcho-capitalists* so irritating. You cannot have capitalism without markets, you cannot have markets without property rights, and you cannot have property rights – outside the trivial “this stuff here that I am actively keeping others from taking is mine” – without government.

      *of course anarchists in general are irritating in their religious belief, contrary to all history and evidence, that government is optional. Get more than 3 humans together and you’ll have a government.

  15. Not requiring immigrants to adopt your culture but instead retain their own has proven historically successful. Why, just look how well it worked for the Amerindians!

  16. BobtheRegisterredFool

    The Immigration situation here in America has been a slow motion train wreck my entire life.

    The federal bureaucracy is a mess, and it is possible that the homeland security reorganization made it worse.

    I live close enough to the Mexican border that we hear rumor. Much of the country is further away, and hears absolutely nothing on national MSM.

    Mexican illegals and unassimilated far outstrip the proposed number of ‘Syrian’ mid easterners. There are a fair number of killings, but it isn’t PC to cover them, and the victims are mostly illegals or associated with drug trafficking.

    Obama made the issue more pressing when he apparently tried to use it to amend our internal power sharing agreement without a negotiated settlement.

    Obama has recently been hyping the importance of ‘doing something’ about spree killings.

    • Yeah, but only a trivial few of the Mexican illegals are trying to kill us, and then only if we get in the way of their drug deals.

      I read something earlier today that now I can’t find again, but it boiled down to since illegal aliens (who cannot …well, legally… vote) are counted by the census for purposes of congressional apportionment — they skew that even without being able to vote. My state is short a Congressman as a result, while California gets five extras — which in turn represent the interests of California’s illegal aliens. Hmmm…

      • BobtheRegisterredFool

        Cartel activities do things like, I heard, making Phoenix’s kidnapping rate the highest in the nation.

        On paper, border violation is a serious crime. Folks who commit one such may be more likely to commit another. So that and high crime rates in south and central America might mean that the illegals include more habitual felons than one would expect. Combine that with political factors restricting strict police monitoring of the illegal population, and one would expect a higher rate of private felonies.

        How would the ‘Syrians’ compare in terms of private crimes? I dunno. How many prepared terrorists in the 10K? I dunno. It isn’t certain to be more than ten spree killer equivalents. (Spree killers mostly seem to come from our spoiled liberal druggie demographic.)

        On the low end for terrorists, how would that compare to however many south and central American serial killers are here illegally?

        If the information is readily available from open sources, I haven’t heard much.

  17. >sigh< This is America; FIGFO or FIGFY-Fit-In-or-Get-the-F*ck-Out or Fit-In-or-Go-F*ck-Yourself, not FIFO. F*ck-off is really only said by lime deficient fog-breathers or folks from one of their former Commonwealths who brag about their hard-earned independence while wearing out cartilage dropping to their knees whenever the useless pink clad whore of a Queen Muvva drives through while doing the pageant wave. If you're going to post about the importance of assimilation, your acronym-as-mantra for American Immigrant acculturation should involve a phrase actually said in American culture. I know you've come here, & because you've successfully managed to become a baseball or Football fanatic in the 3 years between World Cups (hey, even a born American like me has become a fan of World Cup soccer, not football, & remember, it's soccer never to be called football, not here, never here, ever) or because you no longer feel guilty being middle class (as it now stands, at least) in America & living like the elites of whatever 2nd world socialism you came from; just remember, all Americans, from the Right to the Left, all but the most naive self-hating sheltered thought-policing SJW, believe that you came here because America is the best, your Country of origin sucks, & you were smart enough to realize it, now share some homeland recipes (unless you're from the UK; we know how to fry food, thanks, all your other–cuisine, yeah no, please, no) & shut up about soccer. Opportunity, freedom from oppression, all that, all we really hear is America rocks, where I'm from sucks, glad to be here…

  18. NinJaRed
    Read this phrase from the post above carefully:
    “to point where when we became citizens of Australia”
    Look up “Australia”.
    Come back and apologize for your idiocy, lack of reading skill, or poor grasp of geography, if you have testicular fortitude for it.

    • Hey, I might be dumb, but I ain’t stoopid, despite all evidence to the contrary. I should’ve been NaNoWrimo-ing anyway, not commenting on posts I clearly didn’t read properly, like a schmuck. You are owed an apology, & frankly, one (1) open handed slap to the back of my head, where neck meets skull. I’m just gonna f*ck right off before I say something even more stupider than I already have…

    • BobtheRegisterredFool

      *Forks a copy of the CIA World Fact Book and starts editing.*

      That would be American Australia, historically a part of the Greater United States of America. 🙂

      End the unjust and illegal occupation of American Canada!

      No Administration can hold the Manidate of Destiny without controlling…

      Wait, maybe this isn’t so funny after all.