The sign above his head reads NATIONAL ASSOCIATION TO STOP IMMIGRATION NOW.
And the point is? That if you're an immigration reformer, you'll get beaten up by imported thugs?
A reader writes:
I've been watching the kerfuffle over David Brooks' quoting of you with increasing astonishment. You've said all I would say and more regarding the obtuseness of the criticisms. But one thing that does perplex me is why it hasn't come up earlier.
In recent weeks, you've been in national news three times by my counting. First, you exposed Kerry's (lower-than-Bush's) IQ. Second, you debunked the 44% Hispanic share of the Republican vote. Third, you identified the amazingly high correlation of GOP votes with white birthrates.
[I'd add a fourth recent controversy, the State IQ Hoax which generated an enormous number of hits after the election, but only surfaced in the commercial media in The Guardian in the U.K. Perhaps it would have made the Establishment media here if I hadn't debunked it so thoroughly back in May that all professional journalists were scared off from it.]
What I don't understand is why your findings were dealt with and soon accepted on their merits the first couple of times but not in this last case. Why do you think ignorant hacks weren't all denouncing your IQ and Hispanic vote share claims on these 'Eugenicist'/'Hate Group' grounds, too?
Oh, David Brock's Media Matters site denounced John Tierney for quoting me on Kerry's IQ in the NYT back in October. (Being denounced as immoral by David Brock is an experience I'll always treasure.) But, as you say, you would think that would have brought out the sharp knives even more since it was 10 days before the election with a lot hanging in the balance.
Anyway, Brooks' op-ed struck a raw nerve with a lot of women by claiming that having babies was the Hot New Fashion Trend (By the way, although I often give Brooks a hard time, his new op-ed on "The Wonks' Loya Jirga" is a delight, a tiny masterpiece of Tom Wolfe-Lite satire).
If you want to elicit screaming irrational outrage, just publish something that suggests that a large group of women have chosen the wrong way to live their lives. By endorsing "natalism," Brooks outraged the usual coven, the Maureen Dowd-types who secretly despair over whether they've wasted their lives by not having children. They hate anybody who reminds them of the sick feeling they get in the pit of their stomachs when they worry about the choices they've made.
So, there was a lot of Brooks-hatred flowing around (as you could see on dozens of online forums), and going after me was an easy way to get at him even if it made absolutely no sense objectively: all he did was cite some numbers I had counted.
I guess I must have counted them in an eeeeevil way.