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Unz Again

In his response to my "Reply to Unz," Ron Unz gets one thing right, a bunch of things wrong, and simply ignores the most damning part of my reply.

(1) He begins by complaining that I argue "at great length [!] that federal inmates should be included in the incarceration estimate."

Wrong. I spent the first quarter of my reply pointing out that his reasons for excluding the federal numbers - i.e., that they include "large numbers" of undocumented nannies & drug mules, but "almost no" street criminals, are thoroughly bogus - a point that he makes no serious attempt to rebut.

The remaining three quarters of my reply accepted his ground rules - i.e., the exclusion of the federal numbers. He calls this being "adamant about including the federal numbers."


(2) Unz goes on to insist on the reliability of "Table 2005-14," and accuses me of preferring to use "Table 2005-13" for no good reason.

Wrong again. My reply depended entirely on 2008 figures. Unz challenged me to come up with a better way than his of estimating relative Hispanic vs. white criminality, adjusted for age and sex. I duly came up with a better way. Which he ...simply ignores.

(3) Unz writes that "Burton seems to regard blacks as the source of all evil."


Unz himself pointed out, in his original article, that "the claims of extremely high relative black incarceration rates...remain correct even after [his absurd attempt at] age adjustments..."

But when I make the same observation, and point out some of the implications, in the course of disagreeing with him, he plays the "racist!" card.

Very nice.

(4) Unz then returns to his favorite cherries: El Paso & Santa Ana, Lexington & Lincoln.

Well, whatever.

If he could come up with some reliable figures for the relative white vs. black vs. Hispanic crime rates in any one of these cities - well, that might be interesting. But trying to use them as proxies for the overall national white or black or Hispanic crime rates is just plain dumb.

Almost as dumb as Unz's supposed "method" for adjusting his favorite Table 2005-14 for age & sex.

Jason Richwine has generously described this "method" as "crude." But, imho, a "method" that arrives at figures that are off by a factor of three or more is not a "crude" method - it is no method at all.

It is pure & simple fraud.

P.S.: here's the one thing that Unz got right: never trust Wikipedia. Their current info on the demography of Seattle is about as reliable as he is - i.e., not at all. They link to all the right sources - but whoever transcribed the data got every single number wrong.

Using the actual ACS demographic data for Seattle & San Jose, I would initially expect crime in Seattle to exceed that in San Jose by only about 15%, instead of 30%.

Again, if anybody's inclined to ask, I'll be happy to provide my math in the combox.

Comments (6)

Good rejoinder, Steve. I was disappointed by Unz's unfair reply to your response. He unfortunately didn't address your substantive points.

If anyone is unfamiliar with this debate, which is now taking place on numerous websites, here's a roundup:


Thanks for the summary post there, M.A.

Unz has another reply to Richwine where he concedes that his numbers are wrong, but maintains that the new higher numbers aren't really anything to worry about.


Hilariously, it's right underneath a Buchanan article in the blog view. Sort of a reminder of where TAC has come from and where it is now.

Excuse my extreme ignorance on immigration as an issue (I'm being sincere), but what's at stake here? Is the idea that crime rates of Hispanics are so high that we should keep them from immigrating here?


Crime is only a small part of the overall picture. It's also numbers


wages, social order, etc.

If you are completely new to this issue, I'd suggest reading Peter Brimelow's 1992 National Review article "Time to Rethink Immigration?":


I'd also recommend Pat Buchanan's recent book: State of Emergency.

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