»  Radio Derb — Transcript

        Friday, February 23rd, 2024

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

01 — Intro.     And Radio Derb is on the air! Greetings, listeners, from your stalwartly genial host John Derbyshire, podcasting here on behalf of VDARE.com, your go-to website standing up for the historic American nation.

I'm pleased to note that VDARE has been getting some good publicity the past few days.

As you probably know, New York State Attorney General Letitia James has included us with Donald Trump, the National Rifle Association, and no doubt many lesser persons and organizations as Enemies of the People guilty of bad thinking.

Unable to find any actual illegalities to charge us with, she is trying to destroy us by lawfare — endless subpoenas and procedural demands for which we have to hire lawyers. This lawfare has been going on for two years, wasting our time and sapping our finances.

This week Tucker Carlson took an interest in our case. He recorded a 37-minute interview with Lydia Brimelow and posted it on his website tuckercarlson.com. You need to subscribe to Tucker's website to watch the whole thing, but the first 8½ minutes are at VDARE.com for free.

Also this week and also for free, conservative journalist Pedro Gonzalez had a good short report at the Chronicles magazine website. Sample quote:

Though the case has received relatively little media coverage, it is a shocking abuse of the system that raises sobering questions about the future of free speech in this country.

End quote.

Indeed; and thank you, Sir.

Letitia James has of course been popping champagne-bottle corks this past week. Let's open the show with that.

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02 — Totalitarian justice in New York.     The biggest news story of the last few days has been the ruling by a New York Court that Donald Trump had, over several years, over-valued some of his properties in filings with banks and insurance companies.

The prosecutors argued that those over-valuations got the Trump Organization better terms than it would otherwise have got from those lenders, saving the Organization hundreds of millions of dollars.

This was a civil trial, not a criminal one. A civil trial usually involves some person or organization, the plaintiff, claiming that he, she, or it has been wronged in some way by some other person or organization, the defendant. Civil trials most often end with a cash settlement. Nobody goes to jail; and in jurisdictions with capital punishment, nobody gets executed.

Because life and liberty are not at stake, civil trials are looser than criminal trials. There won't necessarily be a jury or a defense attorney, and the plaintiff's case doesn't have to be made beyond a reasonable doubt, only on the preponderance of evidence.

All right, enough Law School 101: So these lenders, these banks and insurance companies, sued Trump for defrauding them, right?

Er, no. In fact, quote from the February 16th New York Times, quote:

The victims — the bankers who lent to Mr. Trump — testified that they were thrilled to have him as a client.

End quote.

So who was the plaintiff here, and how was he, she, or it wronged?

The plaintiff was VDARE.com's nemesis, New York State Attorney General Letitia James. How had she been wronged by Trump over-valuing properties he owns? She hadn't.

You see, New York State has a law, passed in 1956 and not much used, that lets the State Attorney General bring cases of civil fraud against defendants even when no identifiable person or organization has been harmed.

The A-G does not even, in fact, have to show that the defendant intended to defraud anyone, or that his actions resulted in financial loss.

The logic seems to be that there is a general wrong when someone does what Trump did, "distorting the market" and "undermining the integrity of New York's business world," to quote the A-G's lawyers prosecuting the case.

In fact this prosecution was highly selective. The New York Times couldn't find a single case, in all 67 years that law has been on the books, where it was used against an individual or a company that did not commit a criminal offense, or go bankrupt, or leave financial victims.

The prosecution was entirely political. When Letitia James was campaigning for the office of Attorney General in 2018 she openly promised that if elected she would destroy Trump.

She could not, at that point, have known of anything she might prosecute him on, least of all the obscure picayune law she eventually used. She just hated Trump's politics. In search of something to prosecute him for, she sent her staffers out on fishing expeditions.

The promise "Show me the man and I'll show you the crime" is generally attributed to Lavrenty Beria, Stalin's secret-police chief. Whoever said it, it neatly encapsulates what passes for justice in totalitarian states … And now, in the U.S.A.

Letitia James' partner in crime here was trial judge Arthur Engoron. There was no jury, so it was entirely up to Justice Engoron to settle the penalties. He went to the limit, hitting Trump with close to half a billion — "billion" with a "b" — in fines and interest.

He further loaded that up with restraints and restrictions that make it impossible for Trump to continue doing business in New York and difficult for him even to appeal the ruling. Not satisfied even then, he hit Trump's two eldest sons with four-million-dollar fines each and two-year bans on doing business in New York.

This is deep trouble for the Donald. It's not even clear how he can meet all the court's conditions. He can of course appeal; but this is a state case, remember, and New York State appeals courts are just as loaded up with radical-progressive Trump-hating judges as the regular trial courts are.

Running for President is expensive, too. Having plenty of your own cash surely helps. Now Trump has way less cash than he had a month ago.

So: a major triumph for our communist ruling class and a body blow to those of us clutching to the dwindling hope that our nation's justice system might keep itself standing clearly, firmly separate from the personal vendettas of powerful politicians.

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03 — White men need not apply.     I hope listeners will forgive me for yet another long grumble about New York State, where I live. I believe there are some general deductions to be made — issues bigger than just the Empire State.

I opened my January Diary with the plain declaration that, quote: "I love my country but I don't much like my state," end quote.

I recycled that in last week's podcast to make the point that as bad as New York State is, New York City is worse.

I looked back to a town hall meeting that New York City Mayor Eric Adams had held at the end of January. Referring to a video clip of the meeting, I told you that Hizzoner was "standing holding a mike, out in front of citizens who'd come to watch him speak. Seated in a long row some way behind him were twenty officers of the city, people Adams had appointed."

Watching that video clip later with more attention to the panning shots, I think the actual number of city officials in that row was 39, not twenty. Twenty-two were female, that's 56 percent.

Identification by race and ethnicity defeated me. These were background shots, faces seen at a distance.

New York City — the city that Eric Adams is the Mayor of — is 31 percent non-Hispanic white, 29 percent Hispanic, 23 percent black, 17 percent other.

From what I could figure out, the city officers on show there were a little blacker than that, though not by much. How many of the whites were Hispanic, I can't say. The opening address was given in English but with the Spanish text scrolling on a screen.

The main point of the meeting, as I told you, was for Mayor Adams to blame his dismal showing in opinions polls on racism. In aid of that he asked five of his Deputy Mayors to stand and show themselves.

Every one was a female. One was a light-skinned Indian lady, the other four were light-skinned blacks — mulattos or quadroons, two bearing Hispanic names.

Mayor Adams' punch line, received with much applause, quote: "Have you ever seen this much chocolate leading the city of New York?" End quote. That, he went on to explain, is why he's unpopular. Racism!

Catching up on my back reading last week, I saw a withering deconstruction of that whole show, that town meeting, in the February 7th New York Post. It's by Bob McManus, the Post's resident curmudgeon.

After tossing and goring Mayor Adams a while, McManus writes this, quote:

Why an all-minority mayoral cabinet would by itself generate the poll numbers plaguing Adams is a mystery.

And, perhaps more to the point, the only white male in a major elected leadership role across all of New York is state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli.

Everybody else — the governor, state legislative leaders, New York's attorney general, the chief judge of the Court of Appeals and the speaker of the New York City Council — is either of color, female, or both.

End quote.

At that point the following thought leapt right to the front of my mind, unbidden. Thought: "That's your problem, right there."

I didn't mean Mayor Adams' problem, I meant New York State's larger cultural, legal, and political problem, of which the state's crazy Attorney General Letitia James is merely an example.

Only one white male in a major elected leadership role across all of New York State? There are some matters of definition to be sorted out there.

What about Senator Chuck Schumer? And the current Mayor of Binghamton is a non-Hispanic white guy. McManus can't plead that he only meant people with just state-wide authority, having included the New York City Council Speaker in his list.

If we allow a little latitude for Pundit's License, though, McManus probably isn't far off. A position of executive, legislative, or judicial authority in New York State? White men need not apply.

Black women, on the other hand, need hardly go to the trouble of applying. They will be eagerly sought out and pushed forward by the current political apparatus.

As I noted here on Radio Derb last year as the fuss over Harvard President Claudine Gay was heating up, quote from myself:

Reading the news about our universities taking the side of Hamas after October 7th, I was a bit surprised to see that the President of Harvard University is a black woman.

I really shouldn't have been. Black women zoomed to the top of the status ranks when I wasn't paying attention. Educated black women are in terrific demand; every organization wants one. President of Harvard? Oh, definitely — got to be a black woman.

In February 2020, on the campaign trail, Joe Biden promised that if, as President, he got the opportunity to nominate a Supreme Court justice, he would nominate a black woman. He accordingly did so.

End of self-quote.

New York City Mayor Adams believes that by appointing five nonwhite females to be Deputy Mayors he was striking a mighty blow against entrenched prejudice — boldly, fearlessly defying the established way of doing things.

In fact he was just scurrying along obediently with early-21st-century Western cultural fashion, like the midwit conformist he is.

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04 — Zones of white exclusion.     That social and cultural fashion for prejudice against white men showed up in two news stories this week.

The first of them concerned those numbers out of the Writers Guild of America West that Steve Sailer posted at VDARE.com on Tuesday.

Executive summary: In the ten years from 2011 to 2020, staff writers for American TV series — I guess that means sitcoms and dramas — went from 35 percent female to 63 percent and from 72 percent white to 44 percent white. In other words the female proportion went from just over one third to almost two thirds, the white proportion from a tad less than three quarters to well below one half.

So yes: white men need not apply. The prize being sought by recruiters at the TV companies is that figure shining down at us there from the top of the identitarian totem pole, the same figure that Joe Biden gazed up at longingly when he needed a Supreme Court nominee, the same figure the trustees of Harvard University pushed forward as their president: a black female.

What effect will this have on TV shows? With the traditional 7:30-every-Tuesday-evening TV sitcom fading away into cultural history, it's hard to work up much interest in the question.

Steve notes that TV sitcom screenwriting and production have been heavily Jewish occupations. Norman Lear, Chuck Lorre, Larry David, Jerry Seinfeld, … yes, sure looks like it.

Will ladies of color do as well? Given, as I said, the overall decline in traditional patterns of TV watching, it may not matter much. Comedically-talented Jewish males will have fewer job opportunities; but hey, there are still movies, miniseries, YouTube, and comedy clubs.

Setting aside the special case of Jews, on the larger questions of whether women in the generality have better comedy sense than men, or blacks than nonblacks, I'm agnostic.

It's too easy to think of funny women (although, browsing a few of my favorites, I was distressed to see that YouTube seems to have canceled most of French and Saunders' Gone With The Wind spoof).

Mrs Derbyshire makes lame jokes at about the same frequency as myself, and we laugh at the same movies. There aren't any blacks I know as well as I know my lady wife, but I've had laughs out of The Jeffersons and Chris Rock.

So likely no great civilizational loss here. Perhaps there really is a black female equivalent of Norman Lear out there, who knows? We'll find out, unless we stop watching TV altogether.

I promised you two news stories about this. Here's the second.

Google has a chatbot named Gemini … Hey, that's my birth sign!

No, I've never used Gemini, nor any other chatbot. I don't really see the point of them. That's a geezer attitude, though. If chatbots are your thing, I'm fine with it.

It turns out that Gemini follows the very first rule of data processing, the rule I learned sixty years ago: Garbage in, garbage out.

What goes in to a chatbot is a vast mass of text gathered from the internet together with statistical relationships between words derived by applying certain general rules.

The text comes from all over, but some of those guiding rules are supplied by a small corps of human beings employed by the firm creating the chatbot. In the case of Gemini that is Google.

One of the things Gemini can do is create images in response to requests from the user. The rules guiding that image creation are, we learned this week, ludicrously woke.

In particular, those rules include the same principle used by Mayor Adams in choosing his Deputy Mayors, the same principle the TV companies apply when hiring staffers to write scripts for their series: No white men need apply!

Asked to create an image of a pope, for example, Gemini created two. One showed a full-blood Negro male in papal dress, the other a dark-skinned female of apparently Southeast Asian origin, likewise attired.

It was the same with other historical imaging. Viking warriors, the Founding Fathers, even World War Two German soldiers: black, black, blackety-black … or at any rate, nonwhite.

A former Google programmer posted on X that, quote: "It's embarrassingly hard to get Google Gemini to acknowledge that white people exist," end quote. White males of course especially.

So Google has been infiltrated by resentful black activists, right?

Er, no. The main player here seems to be a chap named Jack Krawczyk, who has a leading position in Google's AI product line. Mr Krawczyk is as white as the driven snow, but he hates himself for it.

People have been digging up a long social-media trail of Krawczyk's white ethnomasochism. Samples from Twitter, as it then was, all apparently dated 2018:

[After commenting on having seen disrespect shown to black colleagues]: "We obviously have egregious racism in this country, but the small shit like this is part of what enables it."

"White privilege is f***ing real. Don't be an asshole and act guilty about it — do your part in recognizing bias at all levels of egregious."

"nah, jesus only cares about white kids. i'm pretty sure that's in the bible? let's confirm w/ jeff sessions."

End tweets.

Then in 2020, apparently after casting a vote against Donald Trump in that year's presidential election Krawczyk tweeted that, tweet:

"I've been crying in intermittent bursts for the past 24 hours since casting my ballot. Filling in that Biden/Harris line felt cathartic."

End tweet.

When that one came to light earlier this week it drew a comment on X, as it now is, from Elon Musk himself. This one made me laugh. Musk:

Then he called his Mommy, drank a whole case of soy milk & binge-watched Rachel Maddow.

End Musk.

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05 — Economics is a pseudoscience.     I've unmasked myself several times in my podcasts and bloggings as a math snob.

The Canadian economist John Kenneth Galbraith once observed that, quote: "If you've once worked on a farm, nothing else ever seems like work." End quote. We math geeks have a similar blind spot: If you've once tackled math at the higher levels, nothing else ever seems like a serious academic discipline.

With absolutely no disrespect to the shade of the late Professor Galbraith, I am particularly skeptical of Economics.

Back when I was a college student in London the voters of Britain in their collective wisdom elected as Prime Minister a fellow named Harold Wilson. Wilson's first career had been in academia, lecturing in Economics at Oxford University at age 21. He was much advertised by his supporters as having been the youngest Oxford don of the century.

That, it seemed to me at age 19, was just what the country needed — a real high-ranking economist to set the country straight. I would have voted for Wilson in the 1964 election if I'd been old enough.

Things didn't turn out too well. I wouldn't say Wilson's government was an economic disaster, but no-one thought it was an economic triumph. "Lackluster" pretty well describes it, with the devaluation of the pound sterling against the dollar in 1967 as a low point.

Ever since then Economics has been down there with Psychiatry in my esteem as not worth taking very seriously.

I was therefore not astounded by this Michael Lind article in Monday's edition of Tablet about New York Times columnist Paul Krugman, who is a Nobel Prize-winning economist.

The inspiration for Michael Lind's article is Krugman's February 5th column in the Times. Title of Krugman's column: "Immigrants Make America Stronger and Richer."

Krugman's column is hot immigration boosterism. Quote: "Negative views of the economics of immigration are all wrong." He goes on to argue his case in detail.

Michael Lind contrasts this 2024 column with one that Krugman published, also in the New York Times, back in 2006.

That column from eighteen years ago starts with the compulsory Emma Lazarus quote to virtue-signal that Krugman, who has always been on the political left, is not one of those hate-filled, knuckle-dragging xenophobic types like us here at VDARE.com.

It then proceeds into careful negativity. Quote: "A review of serious, nonpartisan research reveals some uncomfortable facts about the economics of modern immigration, and immigration from Mexico in particular." End quote.

It's downhill from there, 2006 Krugman contradicting everything in the column by 2024 Krugman.

Michael Lind does a brilliant, detailed deconstruction job on 2024 Krugman. I'll just leave you with his penultimate paragraph. Quote:

If Krugman was completely wrong about the economics of immigration in 2006, this raises the question of whether he has been similarly wrong about other major economic issues throughout his career. Conversely, if he changes his economic views periodically in consonance with the rise and fall of interest groups in the Democratic Party hierarchy, he is a Nobel Prize-winning economist who believes that the truths his discipline has to offer are less significant than the work of being a partisan Democratic opinion columnist.

End quote.

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

Imprimis:  There has been some worried talk about whether Artificial Intelligence poses an existential risk to the human race.

I think my second and third segments back there suggest a lesser, but still quite pressing question: Does Artificial Intelligence pose an existential risk to white males?

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Item:  We immigration restrictionists may have been over-estimating Japan: I mean, over-estimating Japan's resistance to mass Third World immigration.

Someone sent me this link to a newspaper for Catholics in Asia. The story was posted May 31st last year, headline: Religious tensions in Japan as Muslim population grows.

Sample quote:

The number of Muslims in Japan was estimated to be between 10,000 to 20,000 in the year 2000 while the current estimates are of over 200,000. That is a ten-fold increase in less than one generation.

Also, mosques that used to be an uncommon sight in Japan are no longer rare. As of March 2021, there were 113 mosques in Japan, up from only 15 in 1999.

End quote.

The story seems to have been prompted by a Muslim resident in Japan — from Gambia, says the story — vandalizing a Shinto shrine.

Oh boy. If Japan goes open borders, who shall we look to for a model of demographic sanity? I guess there's still Hungary.

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Item:  VDARE.com has closely followed the career of dissident law professor Amy Wax, who has been in trouble with her administrators at the University of Pennsylvania ever since, in August 2017, she co-wrote an Op-Ed in The Philadelphia Inquirer arguing for bourgeois values.

Professor Wax has tenure so U. Penn. can't just fire her, although they'd dearly like to. They can, however, make her life a misery, and they've been doing that with gusto.

It's just been made public that a board of U.Penn. faculty members decided last June on a package of sanctions against Prof. Wax. The President of U. Penn. signed off on the sanctions in August. They include:

  • a one-year suspension at half pay with benefits intact

  • a public reprimand issued by university leadership

  • the loss of her named chair and summer pay, and

  • a requirement to note in her public appearances that she is not speaking for or as a member of the University or its law school.

However, Prof. Wax filed an appeal against the ruling. So these sanctions can't be applied until there's been a ruling on the appeal by U. Penn.'s Senate Committee on Academic Freedom and Responsibility.

For all I know there may be another level of appeal above that, and so ad infinitum. The lady is a law professor, after all. This show could run and run until Prof. Wax reaches retirement age.

Whatever. I offer Prof. Wax my heartfelt good wishes, and the fortitude to see through to the end this battle against ignorance, stupidity, dishonesty, cowardice, small-minded conformism, and administrative butt-covering.

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Item:  I started this podcast with a story about a guy hated by his country's ruling class for his dissident opinions and the attempt by that ruling class to crush him totalitarian-style.

The crushing in Donald Trump's case is only metaphorical. Whatever Attorney General James and Justice Engoron inflict on him, he will likely remain a free man with a warm bed to sleep in and pleasant food to eat.

In a country with a more strongly established totalitarian tradition and a justice system that has traveled all the way to the end of the dark road that America is only halfway along, persons who make themselves unpopular with the authorities are dealt with more harshly.

Hence the fate of Alexei Navalny, murdered in the prime of life February 16th by Russian secret police on the orders of Vladimir Putin.

Visiting Moscow in December 2011, my path through life approached Navalny's at a distance of a few hundred yards when he addressed a big anti-government protest near our hotel.

We foreign visitors were advised to stay well away from the event; but we heard the noise of it, and I suppose Navalny's voice was in there somewhere.

Now that voice is silent, silenced by brute lawless power. Rest in peace, brave Sir.

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07 — Signoff.     That's all for this week, ladies and gents. Thank you as always for your time and attention.

Please join me in observing a moment of silent respect for all those everywhere who stand proud and unbroken against the assaults of shameless, unscrupulous authority.

[Silence.]

There will be more from Radio Derb next week.

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[Music clip: More Derbyshire Marches.]