Posts Tagged ‘Asia’
September 17th, 2012 at 12:43 pm
The Right Kind of Immigration
Posted by Print

In the half-dozen or so years since immigration reform has once again become a major issue, we’ve too often fallen into a false dichotomy between being restrictionist to the point of halting legal immigration on the one hand or throwing open the floodgates to all comers — legal or otherwise — on the other.

Lost in that oversimplification, however, are prudential considerations about what kind of immigrants we should be welcoming. If we’re looking to encourage traditional American virtues, Asian immigrants provide a hopeful example. From Joel Kotkin, writing at the New Geography:

Asia has become the nation’s largest source of newcomers, accounting for some 36% of all immigrants in 2010. Asian immigrants and their U.S.-born descendants tend to be better educated: half of all Asians over 25 have a college degree, almost twice the national average. They earn higher incomes, and, according to a recent study by the Pew Research Center, are more likely to abide by “traditional” values, with a stronger commitment to family, parenting and marriage than other Americans, and a greater emphasis on education.

“Most Asian immigrants bring with them a healthy respect and aspiration for the American way of life, so I don’t think any immigration alarmists need to be anxious,” notes Thomas Tseng, founding principal at New American Dimensions, a Los Angeles-based marketing firm. “With a large influx of them, you will get a lot of their kids in the school system who are told that getting an education is the surest way for them to succeed in life, a great deal of entrepreneurial energy and new businesses in a region, and most certainly the local restaurant scene will improve.”

Culinary considerations aside, Kotkin and Tseng make an important point. Indeed, why would we consider for a moment admitting immigrants who don’t have a “a healthy respect and aspiration for the American way of life.”?

My point is not to cheerlead for racial preferences that advantage Asian immigrants. In fact, the very idea is reprehensible. The beauty of American citizenship is that it is predicated on principles which are held to be equally accessible to all.

But as our liberal friends so often forget, access is distinct from entitlement. American citizenship should be earned and a dedication to the country’s animating principles — hard work, education, civic and familial virtue — is as good a place as any to start.

We need not say that American needs more Asian immigrants. We may simply say that America needs more immigrants — of any background — who share their values.

April 2nd, 2012 at 1:19 pm
In Tibet, Shades of Tunisia?
Posted by Print

The Arab Spring has changed shapes so many times in the year since it started — with the most recent development coming in the form of a Muslim Brotherhood bid for the presidency of Egypt — that it’s easy to forget the relatively small act that kicked it off: the self-immolation of Tunisian street vendor Mohammed Bouazizi, who took his own life in protest of state-sponsored oppression.

There’s at least one place outside of the Middle East where that example hasn’t been forgotten, however: Tibet. From a report in the Washington Post:

More than 33 Tibetans … have set themselves on fire in a recent wave of … acts of resistance against Chinese rule. The self-immolations are a reaction to what many Tibetans see as a systematic attempt to destroy their culture, silence their voices and erase their identity — a Chinese crackdown that has dramatically intensified since protests swept across the region in 2008.

In the spring of 2008, as the Beijing Olympics approached, Tibet was once again engulfed in protests and riots in which hundreds were killed and thousands were arrested. The response has been brutal, human rights groups say.

A program to resettle Tibet’s nomads into apartments or cinder-block houses and fence off their vast grasslands has gathered pace, the replacement of Tibetan by Chinese as a medium of instruction in schools has been expanded, and government control over Tibet’s Buddhist monasteries, the center of religious and cultural life, has been tightened.

The Post‘s report goes on to chronicle other horrors in detail (one Buddhist monk who set himself aflame in 2009 with a picture of the Dalai Lama and a Tibetan flag was shot to death by Chinese police). With that kind of merciless force — and the sheer scope of Chinese power — it is doubtful that Tibet will ever earn its freedom by any means other than Chinese fatigue or outside intervention, neither of which look to be anywhere on the horizon. Against such dire odds, the courage of resistant Tibetans is all the more remarkable — and the necessity of publicizing their plight all the more acute.

November 13th, 2009 at 5:12 pm
Our Dour Leader

While touring Asia, President Barack Obama continued his recent backhanding of the international community. Last week it was failing to attend the 20th anniversary of the Berlin Wall falling. Today, it’s telling Asian markets to perish the thought of relying on future American spending.

President Barack Obama has come halfway around the world to personally deliver the message to East Asia that the global economy can no longer count on the U.S. consumer to keep it afloat.

In what White House aides call a “major address” here on Friday, and in planned comments in Singapore and China next week, Mr. Obama will press his push to “rebalance” the world’s economy, urging China to adjust its economic policy to spur domestic consumption as the U.S. encourages less consumption, more savings and more exports.”

But perhaps the news isn’t all bad for Asian exporters.  With the increasing purchasing power of the federal government under Obama’s rapacious domestic agenda, Asian businesses will soon be able to find a new buyer for their goods: the all-encompassing federal bureaucracy!