John Derbyshire: I’m Sorry For Hong Kong—But U.S. Must Not Import ANOTHER Overclass
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[Excerpted from the latest Radio Derb, now available exclusively through]

See, earlier: John Derbyshire: Time To Stop Importing An Immigrant Overclass; John Derbyshire: “Importing An Overclass”–The Email Bag

As predicted in my 2001 China Diary—although somewhat sooner than I anticipated—the ChiComs have made their move on Hong Kong. That city is now under the same deadening political conformity and state terror as mainland China. Arrests of dissidents have already been carried out.

Some Hong Kongers have vowed to stay and continue fighting for their freedoms. My admiration for their courage knows no bounds, but I am not hopeful about their career and life prospects.

Many more are looking to emigrate. But to where?

The British government has offered an open door to as many as three million Hong Kongers [Hong Kong: UK makes citizenship offer to residents, BBC, July 1, 2020]. The city was a British colony until 1997. When the city was handed over to China that year as a Special Administrative Zone, with basic liberties guaranteed for fifty years, the residents were given a limited right to visa-free travel to Britain.

Now, with this latest ChiCom-demanded security law in place, those liberties are disappearing fast. The Brits are doing what seems, superficially, to be the decent thing, offering citizenship under easy terms to any that want it.

Other Anglosphere countries likewise. Australia, which has ticked off the ChiComs to such a degree on issues of trade and the coronavirus that they have nothing left to lose, has offered limited sanctuary [China has only itself to blame for Australia's move on Hong Kong, by Ben Bland, Guardian, July 10, 2020]. Canada, which for decades has had a big Hong Kong-émigré population, is looking to take in more, although nothing's been made firm yet [Canada eyeing more immigrants from Hong Kong |  As of the 2016 Census, there were 215,000 Hong Kong-born Canadians living in Canada, CIC News  July 5, 2020] New Zealand is, quote, "reviewing its relationship" with Hong Kong, according to the Kiwi Foreign Affairs Minister [Angering China, Australia suspends extradition treaty with Hong Kong, extends visas, by Kirsty Needham,  Reuters, July 5, 2020].

It's not just the Anglosphere, either. Taiwan has expressed willingness to take in Hong Kongers, although there is some wariness on both sides [Taiwan Prepares for Flood of People Fleeing Hong Kong, VOA, June 14, 2020].

On the Taiwan side, authorities there worry that a flood of incoming Hong Kongers would include a fair cohort of ChiCom agents, which it undoubtedly would. There is also a more generalized reluctance to do anything proactively to tick off the ChiComs, whose noises about returning Taiwan to the warm bosom of the Motherland have been getting louder under current ChiCom Godfather Xi Jinping.

On the Hong Kongers' part, given those noises from the mainland, there's the suspicion that fleeing to Taiwan would be going from frying pan to fire, or at least to something fire-adjacent. If the ChiComs are moving on Hong Kong today, how long will it be before they make their move on Taiwan?

Under these circumstances I was a bit surprised to see this: The week before the ChiCom-demanded security law went into effect on June 30th, Foreign Policy commissioned a poll of Hong Kongers asking whether they were planning to flee Hong Kong and, if so, what would be their first choice of destination and what would be their last choice [Hong Kongers Say Taiwan Is Their First Choice as Exile Looms  by Lev Nachman, Nathan Kar Ming Chan, Chit Wai John Mok,  July 8, 2020].

First choice? Taiwan, by an easy margin—thirty percent chose Taiwan.

Next choice was Canada at around fifteen percent, then Australia, Mainland China, and Britain.

The USA was eighth choice, around three percent. I'm not sure what that tells us.

W-a-a-ay out ahead of the pack for last choice was Mainland China, around seventy percent. The USA polled well here, too, though, placing joint second with Australia at ten percent.

But that's preferences on the sending side. This being, you know I'm going to point out that the receiving nation should have something to say about it, too.

As the author of a couple of full-length articles on the perils of importing an overclass, I've made my own sympathies plain: Importing an overclass of people who are on average smarter than your own people, is foolish and short-sighted. It's double foolish if the incoming overclass is racially distinctive. You're just storing up trouble for the future.

(Other articles on the overclass theme: here, here,  here, and here.)

And, on the matter of that cohort of ChiCom agents in among a mass of imported Hong Kongers, any other nation that takes them in should share Taiwan's apprehensions.

In fact, we should be more apprehensive than the Taiwanese, whose more-or-less common culture and heritage with the Hong Kongers would make it easier for them to spot the spooks.

Bottom line here: If floods of people do leave Hong Kong for a freer life elsewhere, I hope the majority will choose Taiwan.

That keys neatly to the fact of Taiwan being their first choice in that Foreign Policy poll.

Hey, problem solved!—if Anglosphere politicians will let it be solved.

John Derbyshire [email him] writes an incredible amount on all sorts of subjects for all kinds of outlets. (This no longer includes National Review, whose editors had some kind of tantrum and fired him.) He is the author of We Are Doomed: Reclaiming Conservative Pessimism and several other books. He has had two books published by com: FROM THE DISSIDENT RIGHT (also available in Kindle) and FROM THE DISSIDENT RIGHT II: ESSAYS 2013.

For years he’s been podcasting at Radio Derb, now available at for no charge. His writings are archived at

Readers who wish to donate (tax deductible) funds specifically earmarked for John Derbyshire's writings at can do so here.


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