»  Radio Derb — Transcript

        Friday, November 11th, 2022


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[Music clip: Haydn's Derbyshire March No. 2, organ version]

01 — Intro.     And Radio Derb is on the air! Greetings, listeners, from your methodically genial host John Derbyshire this rainswept Friday evening, November 11th.

I am going to assume that by the time this edition of the podcast reaches your ears you will be suffering from some degree of election overload. The polls closed more than three days ago; news outlets and social media have been giving us the results and chewing over their meaning.

Commentary from every point of the political spectrum has been aired, from Joe Biden declaring it a, quote, "good day for democracy," end quote, to the angry laments I'm reading at conservative outlets.

On that assumption — the assumption that you have by now heard all you want to hear about Tuesday's vote — I shall restrict my own election commentary to a single segment. The rest of the podcast I'll give over to other topics.

Here we go.


02 — Jeff Sessions' Revenge.     I'm going to title this segment "Jeff Sessions' Revenge."

You remember Jeff Sessions, right? On the topic dearest to our hearts here at VDARE.com, the topic of immigration, Jeff was the best U.S. Senator of the past quarter-century. When Donald Trump appointed him U.S. Attorney General we thought all our dreams had come true.

Then, when Trump forced Sessions out for petty reasons, after publicly insulting and humiliating him, and then thwarted his bid for re-election to the Senate, that was when a great many of us National Conservatives started the long drift away from unqualified support for Trump to the realization voiced by Rod Dreher at American Conservative on Thursday this week, quote:

Trump's statements since election day reveal once again what we have always known about his character: that he is a reckless, vain man who doesn't want to do anything other than create a cult of personality around himself.

End quote.

If you want a thumbnail summary of what stopped the much-advertised Red Wave from happening this week, I'll offer this: Dobbs plus Trump.

By "Dobbs" I mean Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health, the formal name of the Supreme Court decision that overturned Roe v. Wade this summer.

I thought Dobbs was a good decision. I said so at length in my June 24th podcast, and I still think so. It riled up a lot of women, though: not just shrieking progessive harpies but also a lot of normal women who would describe themselves as political independents or even Republicans.

In August this year, following the Dobbs ruling, Pew Research asked registered voters what issues would be very important in determining their midterm vote. Fifty-six percent said abortion. That was up from 43 percent in March and ahead of energy policy, immigration, foreign policy, climate change, and covid.

The actual substance of the Dobbs ruling was that there is no right to an abortion in the Constitution and that the Burger Court were wrong to think they'd found one. The ruling implied that if people want such a right they should lobby their legislators.

That's abstract jurisprudence, though: a minority taste that doesn't have much market share. The consequence of Dobbs will be that in a few states it will now be harder to get an abortion than it was before the ruling.

Tens of millions of Americans, however, heard something different. What they heard was: The Supreme Court has banned abortion! Because of those Republican-appointed justices! The Republicans have banned abortion!

Very little voting is decided by careful scrutiny of court rulings, or of social or economic data. Most is decided by feelings, wo wo wo feelings. How many voters could tell you the actual inflation rate or the monthly figure for new illegal aliens?

Back in my May 6th podcast I reminded you of those staggering poll numbers that showed up in answer to the question: "How many blacks were killed by police in 2019?" The actual death toll that year was less than thirty — probably less than twenty — but plenty of respondents polled thought it was more than ten thousand.

So: a lot of female voters are riled up about Dobbs and vented their anger on the GOP.

And then, Trump.

Not the man himself, who wasn't on any ballot anywhere, but indirectly, because of the poor quality of candidates he'd endorsed. Doug Mastriano and Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania, Herschel Walker in Georgia, Don Bolduc in New Hampshire, Dan Cox in Maryland, … ay ay ay. Ann Coulter had withering things to say about the candidate-quality issue here at VDARE.

That's within the larger issue of Trump's political incompetence. He just doesn't know how to play. We already knew this two years ago when Trump's blustering and blundering lost the GOP one of Georgia's seats in the U.S. Senate, giving control of the chamber to Democrats.

Trump's negative effect on this election will probably be decisive in killing his own further political prospects. That opens up two possibilities.

Possibility One:  A boost for the sentiment I have voiced here on the podcast: Trumpism yes, Trump no.

I and a great many other Americans want the Trumpism of the 2016 campaign. We want secure borders, demographic stability, sound finances, the Swamp drained, domestic manufacturing revived, and the troops brought home. We just want those things done by someone more focused and wise, less vain and petty, and with a different son-in-law than Trump.

Some of Tuesday's results offer the hope that Trumpism may survive and flourish without Trump … or you may think that should be "in spite of Trump." The successes of J.D. Vance in Ohio and Ron DeSantis in Florida offer that hope.

That's Possibility One. But then …

Possibility Two:  The departure of Trump will be taken as a victory by the Never Trumpers of the GOP establishment. They will, they believe, be able to go back to the happy days of George W. Bush, ignoring those tiresome complaints from the base about open borders, entangling alliances, and the rest.

Or as a different George would have expressed it:

Back to the dear old game of scratch-my-neighbour
In sleek reviews financed by wetback labour.

Possibility One inspires hope; Possibility Two inspires fear.

Possibility Two may even swallow and digest Possibility One. J.D. Vance and Ron DeSantis may get sucked in by Establishment Republicanism — what we at VDARE call Conservatism, Inc. — and become just another couple of Uniparty open-borders spendthrift warmongering globalist seat-warmers.

Heaven forbid! but it's the kind of thing that does happen in politics. There are lots of cushy congressional sinecures and billionaire donors the establishment can wave in front of their eyes.

For sure the Never Trumpers are gleefully heralding a World of Null-T. John Podhoretz, one of the GOP establishment's fiercest Never Trumpers, concluded his post-election-commentary column in Wednesday's New York Post with this, quote:

The British political figure Oliver Cromwell once said about other British politicians who had overstayed their welcome and were ruining the country, [inner quote] "In the name of God, go!" [End inner quote.]

End quote.

Since we're doing quotes from British history: I have long suspected that GOP establishment Never Trumpers like Podhoretz have for years been nursing a sentiment even more bitter, the one supposed to have been voiced at Christmas 1170 by King Henry the Second on being told that his great political enemy, Archbishop Thomas à Becket, had made a particularly bold move in the power game. Said Henry, quote:

Will no-one rid me of this meddlesome priest?

End quote.

That didn't end well for Becket. Keen to win their king's favor, some of Henry's followers went off and assassinated Becket. No, I'm not saying that Never Trumpers have murder in their hearts; but we don't know for sure that Henry Plantagenet did, either. If you replace the word "priest" by "businessman," you have Never Trumpers' philosophy in a nutshell.

(And to complete the story, things didn't end well for Henry or his country. Britain got a hundred years of civil war and absent, weak, or evil rulers before the great Edward Longshanks showed up to put things right … but I'm rambling, sorry. How did I start this segment? Oh yes, Jeff Sessions.)

No, Jeff Sessions didn't do anything to cause Trump's lousy decisions; they were all Trump's own. Jeff must be smiling down there in Alabama, though, to see the man who thwarted and humiliated him brought low. Smiling to himself, I mean. Jeff is too much the gentleman to be seen smiling at another guy's misfortune.

I miss you, Jeff.


03 — Shall we ever get action on legal immigration?     A lot of pink slips have been going out in the software biz. Elon Musk, following his takeover of Twitter, has summarily fired about half of the firm's 7,500 employees. Meanwhile Mark Zuckerberg's brainchild Meta is laying off one in eight of its workforce, around eleven thousand souls.

I'm not clear what's driving Musk here, but Zuckerberg is just dealing with market failure. The Metaverse virtual-reality app that inspired his company's name change is a floperoo with less than 200,000 users at year's end, when the firm had been aiming for 500,000.

At the same time interest in Meta's other products like Facebook and Instagram has been declining as the mostly-young customer base has moved on to more fashionable and less intellectually demanding apps like TikTok.

The stories about these layoffs have been garnished with sub-stories about laid-off employees, mostly I'd guess in the software development areas, who had been hired in as guest workers, coming from other countries on H-1B visas. Some of these stories reach out to tug at our heartstrings.

Here's a lady named Sujatha Krishnaswamy, quote:

Earlier this year, while being fully pregnant I worked day and night to successfully deliver a critical user-facing privacy feature to meet Twitter's regulatory obligations. I gave my heart and soul every day to meet Twitter's Security and Privacy promises to users and regulators. I loved my work, my team and am really proud of the work I did during my time at Twitter. But unfortunately, my employer didn't love me back.

End quote.

The rule for H-1B visa holders, you see, is that your employer is your sponsor for the visa. When he is no longer your employer, you are sponsorless. Then you have sixty days to find a new sponsor. If you can't, your H-1B visa expires and you have to go back to your home country.

As you can imagine, during those sixty days of sponsorlessness the laid-off H-1Bs are desperate to find a new sponsor. Wage-bargaining-wise, it's a buyer's market.

I don't know what the percentage of H-1Bs at Twitter is. In Meta it's more than fifteen percent overall. Zuckerberg has been an energetic lobbyist for guest-worker visas.

We don't know how many of the eleven thousand laid off at Meta are H-1Bs, but I'd guess it's more than that company-wide average of fifteen percent. Somewhere in the range two to five thousand would be my guess.

As the market for tech jobs floods with these desperate laid-off H-1Bs, the big losers will of course be American tech workers. There's nothing much new about that.

Our own software developers have for decades faced fewer job opportunities and lower wages through abuse of the guest-worker programs.

Here I should give credit to Donald Trump and his administration. They fought hard against the guest-worker racket, with some success; but the combined forces of the Chamber of Commerce and the federal judiciary won at last.

As a 2021 report in Forbes magazine said — triumphantly, of course — quote: "On H-1B visas, the Trump administration came into office like a lion and exited like a lamb." End quote.

I suppose it's possible that these recent layoffs, perhaps with more to come, will re-ignite the issue of H-1B abuse in particular and legal immigration in general.

It's possible, but I don't hold out much hope, certainly not under the current administration. Given their insouciance about illegal immigration, why should we expect them to ever give a moment's critical thought to the legal sort?

Most likely we'll just be fed more weepy stories like Ms Krishnaswamy's to show how heartless of us it is to have any rules about visa duration and validity.


04 — Boomer Heaven.     A footnote to the previous segment.

Yes: I myself came here on an H-1 visa to do software development in 1985. (The H-1 had not yet speciated into H-1A and H-1B. H-1A is for nurses.)

I was hired with a draft of a dozen or so other British programmers (as we were then called) to support the Reagan Boom on Wall Street. So far as I could discover we were hired on the same terms as our American colleagues, none of whom ever showed any resentment of us.

Around half of that draft went back to Britain when the two-year visa term was up. They had family issues that took them back; or they'd just wanted to give America a try but found they preferred the homeland.

My case was somewhat special. A few days after landing here in October 1985 I decided to get married, so I was looking for some stability. I was a bit surprised by how many of my draft went back; but I was already part-Americanized, having lived here in the 1970s when young enough to make the necessary adaptations.

There wasn't any desperation in 1985. These were still the Boomer Heaven years: easy to find work, especially in IT, no pressure or anxiety. Aaaaah …


05 — Nukes you can use.     Vladimir Putin has been rattling the nuclear saber again. In a recent conversation with French President Emmanuel Macron he observed that you don't need to attack your enemy's major cities to win a war. In support of that observation Putin cited America's nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, neither of those being a major Japanese city at the time.

We don't know precisely when this conversation took place. We only heard about it last weekend from a French government source. According to that source Macron was, quote, "distinctly alarmed," end quote.

The source further told us that Putin's comment, quote:

sounded like a very heavy hint that Putin might detonate a tactical nuclear weapon in the east of Ukraine, while leaving Kyiv intact. That appeared to be the thrust of his remarks.

End quote.

Putin is of course right. At any rate, if your enemy doesn't have any nukes, any nuclear attack on his territory anywhere will have him begging for terms. If he does have nukes, things of course get more complicated.

Hiroshima and Nagasaki are actually poor examples to work from when discussing nuclear strategy. They've left too many people with the idea that nukes are city-busters; that a nuclear war will see the annihilation of London and New York, Moscow and Peking.

Well, yes, it might if things got really wild; and with way more death and destruction for those cities that the comparatively feeble nukes of 77 years ago could deliver.

However, for people with serious war-making in mind, nukes offer two great opportunities well short of city-busting.

  1. Space war, and

  2. Tactical advantage.

You can fire off nukes in space, outside the atmosphere, without directly killing anyone at all. Nobody would even see a nuclear explosion in space, unless he happened to be looking at exactly the right spot in the sky.

Our societies today, civilian and military sectors both, rely heavily on orbiting satellites for communications, monitoring of sea and air traffic, location apps like the one in your phone to tell you where you are, and so on. Disrupt those satellite systems, you have a huge military advantage right away, without shedding a drop of blood.

Geopolitical analyst Brandon Weichert had an article about this November 7th at American Greatness. Title: "China and Russia Plot a 'Space Pearl Harbor'; subtitle "America's enemies have made clear their intention to debilitate us on Earth by destroying our satellites in space." Sample quote:

Our ability to communicate, coordinate, and surveil are all inextricably bound up with our satellites. Yet, they are woefully under-defended. Russia and China have developed methods for destroying these orbital systems, leaving America on its knees.

Former President Donald Trump established the United States Space Force to combat our enemies in space. Sadly, Joe Biden has proven himself unwilling and unable to advance the Space Force's important mission of securing the ultimate strategic high ground. As a result, the United States is ripe for a crippling Pearl Harbor-like attack in space.

End quote.

Weichert doesn't mention the EMP issue — the electromagnetic pulse from a nuclear explosion that will disable electronic equipment over a radius of hundreds of miles — but a space nuke will do that for you, too. William Forstchen's 2011 novel One Second After tells you what to expect.

And then, tactical nukes for use against military targets: troop concentrations, airfields, naval bases. Lots of fatalities there, but mostly not civilian.

So when you think about nukes, forget city-busters. Sure, a really crazy antagonist could fry New York if he wanted to; but why court the bad publicity? Nukes can do so much for you without it.

I'm getting long in the tooth now. I was in fact born nine weeks before we dropped Little Boy on Hiroshima. Still I feel pretty sure that before I turn in my lunch pail I shall see nukes used in anger. I doubt they'll be city-busters, though. It'll be the smaller ones, up there in orbit or on some poor devil's tank battalion.

I'd like to think our own military is prepared for the eventuality, but then I read articles like Brandon Weichert's or news stories about transgender admirals, and … well …


06 — Miscellany.     And now, our closing miscellany of brief items.

Imprimis:  We're starting to see stories about the human population reaching eight billion sometime real soon. On November 15th, says this story at msn.com.

That's hard to square with the number given at our Census Department's population clock, which at Friday mid-afternoon shows the world as 67½ million short. Can humanity generate a net 67½ million more people in just four days? I guess nothing's impossible.

Our own country's population, according to the population clock, is much closer to the magic third of a billion: less than 47,000 to go. At a net gain of one person every 41 seconds, that will only need 22 days, 5 hours and change.

Again, though, I'm skeptical. Forty-seven thousand? I bet that many illegals crossed our southern border while I was recording this podcast.


Item:  Embarrassment of the week was surely the attempt by Kentucky Fried Chicken to invite their customers to celebrate the anniversary of Kristallnacht. Just to remind you: Kristallnacht was a nationwide pogrom against Jews in Hitler's Germany, carried out on the night of November 9th 1938. Ninety-something people were killed and there was massive property damage.

Quote from KFC's promotional message to customers in Germany — yes, in Germany. Quote:

It's memorial day for Kristallnacht! Treat yourself with more tender cheese on your crispy chicken. Now at KFCheese!

End quote.

Memo to KFC management: Maybe it wasn't such a great idea to hire in Kanye West as an advisor on promotions.


Item:  I have for the past two weeks been wondering aloud at Radio Derb whether new British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is a genuine Britain First reformer or just another globalist tool. Well, we now have a couple more data points.

Data Point One:  The latest fad among the woke and virtuous is "climate reparations." The idea is that the prosperous, stable nations of the West will pay compensation to Third World poop-hole nations for messing up the atmosphere and causing climate change.

Prime Minister Sunak is totally on board. According to this report at The Daily Sceptic on Monday, November 7th, Sunak will make a speech at the COP27 climate-change conference in Egypt this coming Monday, the 14th, pledging 65½ million pounds of British people's money "for green technology in developing countries."

Data Point Two:  One useful control to manage Britain's horrendous problem of illegal immigration would be to set up a nationwide compulsory E-Verify system so that employers could check they're not employing illegal aliens, with major penalties if they do.

Our own E-Verify works from Social Security Numbers. Britain has those too; they call them "National Insurance Numbers." So you'd think it would be easy to set up a system. Problem is, the politicians won't hear of it.

A Member of Parliament for the opposition Labour Party told a radio program on Tuesday that his party was "looking into" the idea. However, he was immediately slapped down by his parliamentary superior. "No, no," she said, "absolutely not."

That little exchange prompted a reporter to ask if Prime Minister Sunak was open to the idea. Sunak's spokesman replied that, quote: "There are no plans for U.K. ID cards nor a national identity database." End Quote.

It's looking more and more as though the answer to my question is: Globalist tool.


Item:  Chinese dissident Bào Tóng has died in Peking at the age of 90. He was a dissident of high rank: one of those in the ChiCom governing elite who supported the demonstrators in 1989. That got him eight years in prison for "leaking state secrets" and "inciting counter-revolutionary propaganda," and Bào spent the rest of his life under house arrest.

If I start talking about Chinese dissidents I won't stop, so I shall just refer you to my January 2002 tribute to another such, Wáng Ruòwàng, at my personal website johnderbyshire.com under Opinions / China.

And of course, should you want to read an entire novel about the 1989 uprising, my own production Fire from the Sun is just the thing, with a full introduction also on my website under Books.

Rest in peace Bào Tóng.


Item:  Over now to Ireland, the Heart of Wokeness. Two stories from Breitbart.

First story. Headline, November 7th: "People 'Afraid to Walk the Streets' as One-Fifth of Irish Town Now Migrants."

The town here is Killarney in Ireland's far southwest. Until recently Killarney had a population just over ten thousand. That has now been augmented by more than three thousand Third World moochers … I beg their pardon: "asylum seekers."

The townsfolk are living in fear. Get used to it, Killarneians: There are plenty more where they came from. Your government has an actual, stated open door policy with — as of February this year — a total amnesty for illegal aliens.

Second story. Headline, October 28th: "Ireland to Jail 'Hate Speech' Offenders for Up to Five Years."

It's not just jail time. The Breitbart story tells us that, quote:

Any individual convicted of such an offence would be branded a "hate criminal," a label which the minister says is designed to "follow an offender in court, in [police] vetting, and so on."

End quote.

The story doesn't tell us whether the branding there is done with an actual red-hot branding iron, but I wouldn't be surprised.


Item:  Finally, spare a thought for 23-year-old Patrick Thelwell, a student at the University of York in England. That's Old York, of course, not New York.

King Charles, Britain's new King, was visiting York on Wednesday. Mr Thelwell was in the crowd greeting him; then, at an opportune moment, he threw at least four eggs at the king and his lady. The eggs all missed.

Mr Thelwell was arrested, appeared in court, and set free on bail. One of the conditions of the bail was that he was forbidden to possess any eggs in a public place.

I found myself idly wondering, in my legalistic way, how such a condition could be enforced. Would it apply to fish eggs, or ant eggs? Would he be permitted to carry an ovulating human female in his arms? However, I see now that the condition has been altered so that Mr Thelwell can go grocery shopping.

Mr Thelwell is or course a raging lefty. Count your blessings, pal. Four hundred years ago you'd have been hanged, drawn, and quartered.


07 — Signoff.     That's all for this week, ladies and gentlemen. Thank you for your time and attention and also, as always, for your comments, suggestions, and support.

Today, November 11th, is of course Veterans Day. Thanks from Radio Derb to all who have served, including my son Danny and Peter Brimelow's son Alexander.

Here in the U.S.A. we have two separate public holidays to honor our nation's military personnel: Veterans Day, for all who have served, and Memorial Day for those who gave their lives in service. In the slightly different tradition I grew up with there is no public holiday for all who served, only November 11th, Remembrance Day, in tribute to those who gave their lives.

With — of course! — no offense to surviving veterans, I use November 11th as an opportunity to air one of my favorite hymns, John Stanhope Arkwright's "O Valiant Hearts," to music by the Rev. Charles Harris. Here it is sung by the Chapel Choir of the Royal Hospital, Chelsea.

There will be more from Radio Derb next week.


[Music clip: the Chapel Choir of the Royal Hospital, Chelsea, "O Valiant Hearts."]