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Like other traveling carnivals, the right-wing noise machine has its regular sideshows on the midway, with each performer having a particular schtick.   Step right up, ladies and gentlemen, to see Mark Steyn perform his Decline of the White Race routine.  

       Mark Steyn thinks rising Latino population comparable
     to the 1994 Rwanda genocide.
Here's his latest oevre de WTF? at National Review, natch. Mr. Steyn, using his mastery of English grammar gained during years as a "taker" (what we used to call "student") manages to serve up a smorgasbord of stupidity, including such delights as:

-- The election in 2012 was a "tribal" one, comparable to the 1980 election in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) where Robert Mugabe's party, backed by the Shona people prevailed over his rivals who were supported by different tribes.

-- The decreasing number of "non-Hispanic whites" in California is comparable to the massacre of the Tutsi population in Rwanda.  

Mr. Steyn reiterates a wingnut insults here against President Obama, specifically that his administration is comparable to that of the various African presidents-for-life, and to Mugabe in particular.  Just google obama mugabe limbaugh and you'll see what I mean.  

Proceed below the Squiggle of Doom for more of Mr. Steyn's scholarship.

Mr. Steyn could have reviewed some of the responsible scholarly research on the changing demographics in California and its political effect. (Here is an example from 2004.)  But instead he simply retreats to the white people as victims myth.  But Mr. Steyn goes further than that -- he draws an analogy between the declining (percentage-wise) white population of California and the Rwandan Genocide.  Thus spake Mr. Steyn:

According to the Census, in 1970 the “Non-Hispanic White” population of California was 78 percent. By the 2010 census, it was 40 percent. Over the same period, the 10 percent Hispanic population quadrupled and caught up with whites.

That doesn’t sound terribly “natural” does it? If one were informed that, say, the population of Nigeria had gone from 80 percent black in 1970 to 40 percent black today, one would suspect something rather odd and unnatural had been going on. Twenty years ago, Rwanda was about 14 percent Tutsi. Now it’s just under 10 percent. So it takes a bunch of Hutu butchers getting out their machetes and engaging in seven-figure genocide to lower the Tutsi population by a third. But, when the white population of California falls by half, that’s “natural,” just the way it is, one of those things, could happen to anyone.

I wonder if Mr. Steyn has ever met a survivor of the Rwandan genocide?  

I have.  Let me tell you something about them.  They often saw their families being killed right before their eyes, sometimes from a hidden place such as the home of a neighbor.  Sometimes they knew by name who had killed their families, because they had gone to school with the killers.

Can you imagine going home to your house, only to be taken aside by a neighbor for safety while your school classmates hacked your family to death with machetes?

Mr. Steyn seems to think it clever to compare California politics to this country-wide horror.  I find it despicable.  

Nor is it an accident that Mr. Steyn has chosen two African disasters against which to measure the supposed decline of the white race.  David Atkins, writing on Digby's Hullabaloo nailed it (11/9/12):

In the intervening four years, the Republican message against Obama has been nothing but one long racist tirade.

Muslim. Kenyan. Foreign. Hussein. Doesn't share our values. Not Christian. Wants to cut the work requirement in welfare. Obamaphones. "Holder's People." Black Panthers. "Moochelle Chewbacca Obama." "The White Hut." "Entitlement society." "Makers versus takers." Recovery, not dependency. Parasites.

Not content with comparing the re-election of the president to Mugabe and the Rwandan genocide, Mr. Steyn goes on to conclude that Hispanics are incapable of constructing a politically stable society, whereas "Anglo-Celts" (his term) are the perfect people for doing so:
       1943 coup in Argentina.  According to Mark Steyn, rising
       Hispanic population means this is the future in the U.S.
The short history of the Western Hemisphere is as follows: North America was colonized by Anglo-Celts, Central and South America by “Hispanics.” Up north, two centuries of constitutional evolution and economic growth; down south, coups, corruption, generalissimos, and presidents-for-life.

[Straw man blather omitted]   ... demographics is destiny and, absent assimilationist incentives this country no longer imposes, a Latin American population will wind up living in a Latin American society.

Mr. Steyn could have written an intelligent and informed piece about political instability in Latin America, and there have been many academic reports on which he could have drawn for his source material.  He might not like what he would find -- one study (link here (.PDF)), finds that an important cause (or at least a correlation) of political instability in Latin America during the period 1971-2000 was income inequality, with the greater the inequality, the greater the instability.  

Certainly there are other factors contributing to Latin American instability, such as excessive involvement of military in civilian life, dependence on foreign capital, maltreatment of indigenous populations, but none of these point to the supposed superiority of "Anglo-Celt" culture (what is that, anyway) over Hispanics culture in general, which Mr. Steyn, ignoring the many differences among Latin American countries, lumps into one box and sticks the "inferior" label on it.

Mark Steyn refers to himself in the piece as a "right-wing bigot" in a sarcastic way.  But after reading this column of his, the appellation seems completely correct.


Why would conservatives call 2012 a "tribal election"?

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