Race Race
George Szamuely
New York Press


Frank Rich follows a formula as rigidly as any Hollywood "buddy" picture. The New York primary was coming up. So out came his old "anti-Semitism" standby. In a recent column, he claimed that Bush operatives were "targeting [Warren] Rudman." Why? Because he is "the most visible Jew in the McCain campaign."

"‘There’s no question in my mind that it’s anti-Semitism,’ [Rudman] says. ‘The way they pronounced my name in phone calls! They’re unhappy it’s not Finkelstein.’ Nor did he think the Bush campaign was clueless about what was going on." Of course it wasn’t. How do you win elections in Frank Rich’s America? You target the Jews. However, the hatred allegedly directed at Rudman is nothing compared to the hatred he directs at others. A nauseatingly obsequious profile published the same day in The New York Times has him describing the religious right as being made up of "anti-abortion zealots, would-be censors, homophobes, bigots."

Warren Rudman is a wealthy man who’s been a senator and an attorney general. Today, he is a partner in one of the world’s leading corporate law firms–Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. The people he fulminates against are not wealthy. They did not attend Ivy League colleges. They hold no prestigious jobs. In fact, they do not get much of anything in America. Rudman has nothing but disdain for them. His view is one widely shared by America’s elite. The Christian right has no business being part of the public debate at all. Its concerns must be resolutely ignored. Politicians can pander shamelessly before any voting bloc–blacks, soccer moms, gays, Latinos, Jews. But let George W. Bush visit Bob Jones University and it’s as if he has been caught hobnobbing with Hitler.

There is something hilarious about The New York Times’ horror that Bob Jones University "promotes anti-Catholic views." What on Earth does the Times do? From abortion to the ordination of women to priestly celibacy to Corpus Christi to homosexuality to "Sensation" to papal infallibility, the Times always takes the anti-Catholic position. At least Bob Jones’ objection to Catholicism is about theological doctrine–about something more than just sex. As for its prohibition of interracial dating, Bob Jones justifies this by opposition to the "one-world system….one world, one church, one economy, one military, one race, and unisex. God made racial differences as He made gender differences. Each race and each sex should be proud to be what God made it." It is hard to see how this view differs from that of Alan Dershowitz, who devoted his book, The Vanishing American Jew, to agonizing over Jewish intermarriage. "I do not want my grandchildren and great-grandchildren to break our link with Judaism," he cries there, "I do not want them to become the first non-Jews in our family history. I do not want them to assimilate, to melt into someone else’s pot, to join a different religion, or to become part of another tradition or heritage. I do not want their Jewishness…to disappear in the next generation… I want them to stay Jewish…because Jewish is what we have been for thousands of years."

Our elite is a very ungrateful lot. It should consider itself extraordinarily lucky that America’s middle class is so preoccupied with religion. Every year people are working longer hours and making less money. So it is really very nice of the denizens of the heartland–who derive so few benefits from American-style capitalism–to believe fervently that the free market rewards the meritorious and punishes the vicious. It is very nice of them to believe that there is nothing about the economy that needs fixing, that the only problem in America has to do with our souls. It is very nice of them to leave the day-to-day running of the country in the hands of people who have such contempt for them. Yet the Warren Rudmans of this world will not even allow them to discuss their few issues.

Read George Szamuely's Antiwar.com Exclusive Column

Archived Columns by George Szamuely from the New York Press

Race Race

Al the Coward

Intruder Alert

McCain's Money

Haider Seek

Out of Africa

Prosecute NATO

Villain or Victim?

Intervention, Immigration, and Internment

Home-Grown Terrorism

Who Benefits?

Laws of Return

Embassy Row

Selling Snake Oil

Chinese Puzzle

That Was No Lady, That Was the Times

The Red Tide Turning?

Pat & The Pod

United Fundamentalist States

Let Them All Have Nukes!

Liar, Liar

Gangster Nations

Puerto Rico Libre – and Good Riddance

Leave China Alone

A World Safe for Kleptocracy

Proud To Be

All articles reprinted with permission from the New York Press

The other day, Census Bureau director Kenneth Prewitt announced that the U.S. is the first country in history "which is going to have to reinvent itself as a microcosm of the entire world." Americans were not consulted about getting reinvented as a "microcosm" of anything. The "reinvention" is the result of a policy of large-scale immigration pursued by an elite eager to get rich. America’s middle class seems blissfully unaware how firmly it has been locked out of the nation’s prizes. There is no better example of this than the elite universities. In 1998 Ron Unz published an article in The Wall Street Journal pointing out how unrepresentative of America the Harvard student body is. Asians, who comprise 2 to 3 percent of the U.S. population, account for about 20 percent of Harvard undergraduates. Jews comprise 2 percent of the U.S. population, but between a quarter and a third of Harvard undergraduates. Jews and Asians, therefore, constitute about half of Harvard’s student body. Blacks make up another 8 percent and Hispanics 7 percent. Taking into account the large number of foreign students, that leaves about 25 percent of available slots at Harvard for non-Jewish white Americans–about 75 percent of the population.

Recently Bill Gates announced a $1 billion Gates Millennium Scholars program to finance college and advanced degrees for poor children. It turned out, however, that the money would be available for minorities only. Poor white American children, who could also use the money, need not apply. The "initiative…is aimed at expanding access and opportunity to higher education to those citizens who will reflect the diverse society in which we live," according to the Foundation. For Gates, as for the rest of America’s elite, it is much better simply to ignore the majority population and create, instead, easily controlled minorities forever beholden to it.

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