Migrants and Refugees were Genghis Khan’s best weapons

I enjoyed Professor Dorsey Armstrong’s Years that Changed History: 1215 course.

One interesting tidbit: When Genghis Khan wanted to take over a big fortified city, he would attack surrounding small villages and drive the inhabitants as migrants and refugees to the big city. Swelled with a larger-than-usual population, the big fortified city would collapse from within, its resources (such as food) exhausted. This saved Temüjin, the Great Khan, the effort of a traditional Greek/Roman-style siege and catapult attack on a walled city.

Thus did Genghis Khan assemble the largest contiguous land empire that the world has ever seen.

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File under Did Not Waste Any Time: divorce lawsuit in Minneapolis police murder case

From the Daily Mail:

Beauty queen wife of Minneapolis cop Derek Chauvin files for DIVORCE on same day he is arrested and charged with George Floyd’s murder and says she is ‘devastated’ for the dead man’s family

As part of a press push for her bid for beauty contest Mrs. Minnesota America 2018, Kellie raved about Derek in an interview from 2018, telling the Pioneer Press: ‘Under all that uniform, he’s just a softie.’

She also told the outlet: ‘He’s such a gentleman. He still opens the door for me, still puts my coat on for me. After my divorce, I had a list of must-haves if I were ever to be in a relationship, and he fit all of them.’

Kellie told the paper she fled Laos with her family as a child and came to America as a refugee.

A photo of the Minnesota Family Court frequent flyer:

Kellie Chauvin (pictured), a former Mrs. Minnesota winner, has filed for divorce from her husband, Derek Chauvin, the same day he was charged with George Floyd's murder

I wonder if this photo will make it into the Wikipedia page for carpe diem.


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Will we need caravan-loads of immigrant workers after we are done with coronapanic?

Immigrants may have played a substantial role in the American coronaplague. Via immigration and children of immigrants we grew our population from 200 million to 330 million (Pew) with no corresponding increase in health care system capacity. So our terror regarding overburdened hospitals was in some ways a result of the immigration. The worst-plagued cities in the U.S. have been New York (40 percent foreign-born) and Boston (25 percent foreign-born).

But the shutdown plus policies that have made collecting unemployment more lucrative than working for the typical American are winnowing the natives out of the labor force. See “Since coronavirus crisis began, one-fifth of Massachusetts workforce has filed for unemployment” (masslive, April 30), for example. Also, “Labor Markets During the Covid-19 Crisis: A Preliminary View” (Berkeley and U. Chicago agree that Americans don’t like to work!):

First, job loss has been significantly larger than implied by new unemployment claims: we estimate 20 million lost jobs by April 8th, far more than jobs lost over the entire Great Recession. Second, many of those losing jobs are not actively looking to find new ones. As a result, we estimate the rise in the unemployment rate over the corresponding period to be surprisingly small, only about 2 percentage points. Third, participation in the labor force has declined by 7 percentage points, an unparalleled fall that dwarfs the three percentage point cumulative decline that occurred from 2008 to 2016. Early retirement almost fully explains the drop in labor force participation both for those survey participants previously employed and those previously looking for work.

In other words, a lot of existing Americans are done working! This is consistent with past periods of unemployment, in which Americans who get accustomed to lying on the couch watching TV while consuming alcohol and opioids transition seamlessly to SSDI (see “Long-Term Joblessness and Disability Benefits Receipt” (ssa.gov): “At 20 years after their job loss (voluntary or involuntary), these workers had a 25 percentage point higher likelihood of receiving DI or SSI benefits”).

Could it be, then, that to replace the Americans who stop working we will need to grow the population to 400 million or so? (we don’t have an Australia/New Zealand/Canada-style policy favoring working-age skilled immigrants so we will probably need 10-20 immigrants to replace each skilled American who has gone into SSDI/opioids or conventional retirement) And then, when the next plague hits (evolution may just be a theory, but it seems to produce a steady supply of new viruses…), we’ll get into a double secret panic regarding hospital capacity.


  • When Swedish infidels do business in the U.S… the IKEA Covid-19 page says “we have made the decision to furlough hourly U.S. co-workers in store locations and our Service Office effective April 19, 2020. This will allow our hourly co-workers, who are no longer able to work due to closures, to apply for expanded unemployment benefits.”
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American health care workers rage against preferences for the H-1Bers

A friend is a physician in a moderately coronaplagued city here in the Northeast. She’s in a private discussion group for hospital workers. Since they actually do have some Covid-19 patients, they’re not in as bad financial shape as physicians, nurses, and other health care workers nationwide. However, they are having their hours, shifts, and pay cut…. except for the workers on H-1B visas.

Ordinarily, these folks are at least moderately pro-immigration. A caravan of Hondurans that crosses the border should be eligible for Medicaid soon enough, and certainly any children born to those Hondurans while they’re in the U.S. will be Medicaid-eligible. Medicaid will turn the “migrants” into “customers”.

Having their hours cut while the H-1B workers soldier on full-time at full pay, however, is apparently an unanticipated and bitter pill to swallow.

Where is the solidarity for International Workers’ Day?

(Personally, I think the rule makes sense. The H-1B workers do not have the flexibility to quit and work for another employer. So an employer of one of these indentured migrant servants shouldn’t have the right to cut hours and pay.)


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Undocumented migrant population of U.S. jumps from 11 million to 19 million due to Coronavirus

For about 20 years, our official media tells us that there are 11 million undocumented residents of the U.S. But last week I was listening to NPR (temporarily bored by a lecture on 11th century Japanese history so tuned into the Channel of the Righteous as a last resort) and they casually used the number “19 million” in the context of how many people should get amnesty for violating U.S. immigration laws so that they would be encouraged to seek treatment for coronavirus and not kill all American natives. The 19 million number isn’t that different from the 22 million that Yale estimated in 2018, so it is not the number that is interesting but the radical jump from 11 million (when telling Americans not to believe Trump) to 19 million (when telling Americans about the risk of Trump policies designed to discourage the undocumented from getting on health care welfare).

Separately, as there is no treatment for coronavirus and hospitals at the time of the interview couldn’t order tests, it is unclear why anyone would want 19 million undocumented Americans to go to their nearest hospital.

(Is a constant number of undocumented plausible? To some extent, it might be. Most migrants arrive and have children in the U.S. Thus, 18 years later, the parents are entitled to a green card via chain migration (each legal immigrant will bring in an average of 3.45 additional migrants). On the other hand, with the recent migrant surge, the constant number over decades seems less plausible.)


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Immigrants are not on welfare…

… but there will be a epidemic of coronavirus in the U.S. if the millions of immigrants who can’t afford health care at U.S. rates are denied health insurance welfare (Medicaid).

“Washington’s Ferguson, 17 other state AGs protest immigrant ‘public charge’ changes during coronavirus outbreak” (Seattle Times):

Ferguson and the others asked the administration Friday to stop implementing the new version of a rule that allows some immigrants to be denied green cards if they’re deemed likely to be dependent on the government, based on life circumstances such as having received public benefits, including Medicaid in certain cases.

The Washington attorney general sent a letter to U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Citizenship and Immigrant Services officials, arguing the new “public charge” rule is undermining efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19 by deterring immigrants from using medical benefits or applying for them, according to the attorney general’s office.

The same folks and the same media regularly inform us that immigrants are the hard-working engine of the U.S. economy and an insignificant number are collecting welfare benefits, such as Medicaid.

“17 attorneys general ask administration to delay public charge rule during coronavirus outbreak” (CNN):

“DHS received warnings of the potentially devastating effects of the Rule if its implementation were to coincide with the outbreak of a highly communicable disease — a scenario exactly like the one confronting our communities with the COVID-19 public health emergency,” the letter says. “Your agency completely failed to consider such legitimate concerns.”

“DHS openly concedes the Rule could lead to ‘increased prevalence of communicable diseases,’ disenrollment from public programs, and increased use of emergency rooms as a primary method of health care,” it says. “Washington State has already had ten deaths attributable to COVID-19. The State is doing everything in its power to limit the spread of the disease and prevent additional fatalities.”

Ferguson says states, cities, and counties are “undertaking similarly dramatic efforts to limit the spread of the disease and mitigate its harmful effects” and deterring immigrants from using medical benefits “undermines and frustrates our public health professionals’ efforts, putting our communities and residents at unnecessary risk.”

From CNN in 2018, “Stephen Miller’s detestable assault on citizenship”:

The most troubling aspect about Miller’s proposal is that it plays into biases about immigrants — that they are all on welfare, that they are gaming the system, that they are a burden on the country. In fact, a 2013 Cato Institute study noted that poor immigrants use public benefits at a lower rate than poor native-born citizens.

So… an insignificant number of immigrants marching toward citizenship are on welfare, but if this insignificant number does not get Medicaid, native-born Americans will be felled like pine trees in a Georgia paper forest.

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Medieval Scholar explains why elites fear a shrinking population

One staple of American elite media is the scary headline regarding a potential fall in population. Without open borders and a warm welcome for migrants, the story will read, U.S. population will actually drop. The same papers sing the praises of middle class wage growth from 1950-1970, when the population was about half what is it today, so it is unclear why a return to that level is an emergency for the elite.

“The Black Death: The World’s Most Devastating Plague” by Dorsey Armstrong, a professor at Purdue, explains exactly why! The fall in population from the Black Death in Florence led to a dramatic reduction in the economic power of the elite. Skilled and unskilled laborers experienced at least a 3X boost in wages. She attributes the Ciompi Revolt (1378) and similar uprisings elsewhere in Europe (e.g., one in England) to the loss in elite power that occurred due to the population reduction.

The Florentine elites knew that a shrinking population was going to be bad for them. The miracle of valorizing single motherhood was in the future, so they came up with the idea of giving young single women dowries to ensure that they would get married as quickly as possible and then start to produce children. (See “When and why did it become necessary to pay Americans to have children?”)

It is interesting to see how little has changed in 650+ years!

Examples of headline hysteria:


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Do all of the Democrats support effectively unlimited immigration?

Voters are choosing today among the remaining Democrats running for President. What is the choice on what many would consider to be the biggest issue and one with the most long-term impact: low-skill immigration ? (transfers $500 billion/year right now from the working class to the rich, for example, and chips away at every American’s infrastructure endowment)

Let’s look at Mike Bloomberg’s immigration policy page:

Mike’s plan will protect Dreamers and TPS holders and create an earned pathway to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented.

Mike will rescind President Trump’s disgraceful travel ban, end family separations at the border, establish rigorous safeguards for children, and promote alternatives to detention for individuals and families who pose no threat to public safety.

A “dreamer” is someone who shows up prior to turning 16 (but since none show up with documents, it is necessary only to say “I am 15”?). There will be no family separation at the border if an adult shows up with someone who is, or says he/she/ze/they is under 18.

Isn’t the effect of these policies essentially unlimited immigration? A would-be adult immigrant shows up with a “child” and neither can be detained (one is a blameless child; detaining the adult would be “family separation at the border”). Once in, the child cannot be deported because he/she/ze/they is now a “dreamer”. Once the “child” turns 18, he/she/ze/they is entitled to obtain green cards for two parents (“chain migration”).

There are roughly 2 billion children worldwide, age 0-14. Add their parents and that’s at least half the world population that would be eligible for legal immigration to the U.S. under Bloomberg’s plan(s).

Do any of the other Democrats propose a substantially different immigration policy?

[Separately, how does Bloomberg know that there are 11 million undocumented immigrants currently in the U.S.? There is no citizenship question on the 2020 Census (rumor FAQ) and there wasn’t one on a previous census. The eggheads at Yale say that the likely number is closer to 22 million.]

Exterior of my hotel last week in Los Angeles:

Americans are supposed to call up Mike, charge boldly up to the edge of the coronavirus, and let Swedish vodka merchants tell them how to have sex (but we still want to let the Russians tell us how to vote?).

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Knives Out movie: Migrants are better than Native-born Americans

When at Universal Orlando… see a movie! My Irish friend and I saw Knives Out, in which Daniel Craig speaks in a Southern accent that no Southerner since the 19th century (or ever?) has used.

Despite the anachronistic accent, this is perhaps the most modern Hollywood film. It concerns an extended multi-generational family of native-born Americans. They are mendacious and lazy. One even might be a Trump supporter and Wall advocate! All seek to live off the money earned by the patriarch. Their fertility is low, with a one-child maximum.

On the other side of the scale is a hard-working migrant from Latin America. Her mother is undocumented, but somehow she and a sister are citizens. So that the mom can be a completely heroic “single mom,” no father is mentioned nor appears.

It’s a mystery so I don’t want to spoil the rest!

It is worth seeing just to see how thick Hollywood is willing to lay on the “immigrants are better than natives and the U.S. will be better off once the natives have been replaced” message.

[There is a technical inaccuracy. The citizen migrant is supposedly concerned that her undocumented mother will be deported. But the citizen is over age 18 and therefore has an automatic right to bring in her parents (including a father, if one can be identified) via chain migration.]

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NYT: all of the good Mexicans migrated to the U.S….

… leaving behind the bad Mexicans to run their own government in Mexico.

“Trump Got His Wish. Mexico Is Now the Wall.” (New York Times, February 7):

Dozens of Mexican National Guard troops equipped with helmets, batons and transparent shields coalesced on the highway connecting the Mexican cities of Ciudad Hidalgo and Tapachula to stop a caravan of migrants heading to the United States from Central America.

Mexico has effectively turned into an extension of Mr. Trump’s immigration police beyond American territory. And this is the case on multiple fronts: On the southern border with Guatemala, they prevent Central American migrants from coming into Mexico

That’s why I am surprised by the indifference shown by so many Mexicans over the abuses of the National Guard and the vicious attacks on social media aimed at Central Americans. Those xenophobic comments remind me of those I have been hearing for decades here in the United States

Ordinarily, the NYT likes to portray “brown people” as virtuous, especially if they’re living in U.S. taxpayer-funded public housing, soaking up the Medicaid dollars, and voting for the favored candidates of the coastal elite. But when the “brown people” vote and run their own government to suit themselves, the NYT is ready to scold. (But this cannot be whitesplaining?)

[Separately, let’s look at how much the two countries spend to control the border. Mexico spends roughly $6 billion per year on its entire military (Trading Economics), including jet airplanes, Navy ships, etc. The U.S. spends $21 billion per year, more than triple, to run Customs and Border Protection.]

If the NYT informs us that Mexicans in the U.S. are good while Mexicans collectively in Mexico are bad, isn’t the only logical explanation that most or all of the righteous Mexicans migrated to the U.S. prior to the Dark Age of Trump (TM)?

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