Mexican Immigrants Do Not Assimilate Quickly in US, Study Finds

Mexican Immigrants Do Not Assimilate Quickly in US, Study Finds
By Pete Winn Senior Staff Writer
May 15, 2008

( – Immigrants to the United States are doing a good job of assimilating, with immigrants from Cuba, Vietnam, and the Philippines leading the way in adapting to an American way of life, according to a new study. But the one group not assimilating well is Mexicans, apparently because so many of them are in the country illegally.

Excluding Mexican immigrants, the assimilation picture of the 21st century looks better than some might think, as the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, a conservative think tank in New York City, documented in its report, Measuring Immigrant Assimilation in the United States , released Tuesday.

Study author Jacob Vigdor of Duke University points out that there is no question that today’s immigrants are dissimilar from the native-born population when they first arrive.

“If you look at assimilation as a snapshot, and take the immigrant population in its totality, it is less similar to the native-born population than at basically any point in the 20th century,” Vigdor told Cybercast News Service .

But the reality is, immigrants in the 21st century are doing a better job of assimilating into American society than did the generation of immigrants that arrived at Ellis Island a century ago, he said.

“If you look at assimilation as a kind of moving picture – as a process that takes time as immigrants get used to living here and climb the economic ladder and so forth — there is actually some encouraging news,” said Vigdor.

The study used census data from 1890 to 2006 to look at how close foreign-born immigrants look to the native-born population.

Immigrants from Cuba, Vietnam, and the Philippines rank near the top, alongside immigrants from Europe, Australia and New Zealand, as the quickest to acquire English, become naturalized, climb the economic ladder, intermarry with native-born Americans and become involved in American civic culture.

In fact, they are making faster progress in the melting pot than other immigrants — or immigrants from any other periods of history.

“Today’s immigrants are making more progress in assimilation because they are assimilating more rapidly,” Vigdor said. “They are starting out with a disadvantage, but they are making up for that disadvantage at a rapid pace for the most part.”

But Mexican immigrants, he said, are the exception.

“Immigrants from Mexico are not exhibiting the same patterns as immigrants of other nationalities,” Vigdor said. “They are assimilating more slowly over time. We see this particularly in terms of their economic and their civic assimilation.”

Mexicans — by far the most numerous nationality of immigrants — lag significantly behind other groups, Vigdor said, largely because a lack of legal status keeps many Mexican immigrants from advancing economically.

In fact, Mexican immigrants are assimilating more slowly than Italian immigrants did at the turn of the last century, Vigdor said.

Laureen Laglagaron, a policy analyst for the Migration Policy Institute in Washington, D.C., said the new study seems to correlate well with her own findings, with one difference: Her research finds that the children of Mexican immigrants seem to blend better with the native-born U.S. population than their parents.

“They have better advancement in terms of acquisition of college education and entry into the workforce,” Laglagaron told Cybercast News Service . “The second generation, historically, has done a really good job of adopting to their new homeland. And also it’s a function of country of origin – so if you are coming with English-language skills already, you’ll have better time assimilating.”

She also pointed to the fact that both Cuba and the Philippines were former U.S. territories and, along with Vietnam, had large U.S. military bases.

Vigdor, meanwhile, said language skills, though important for assimilation, do not determine whether immigrants will eventually become U.S. citizens. He pointed to Canada, whose immigrants score very high on most assimilation factors.

“Culturally, Canadians are indistinguishable from native-born Americans,” Vigdor said. “The thing that really sets them apart is that they don’t become naturalized citizens at a very high rate.”

The study noted that the immigrant population of the United States has nearly quadrupled since 1970, and doubled since 1990, driven in large part by immigration from Latin America and Asia.

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Government health care and its complaints

Government health care and its complaints

Danny Huddleston
The promise of free government health care from Obama and Hillary is a tempting proposal. But before we jump on board let’s take a look at how our cousins across the pond are doing. They’ve had “free” health care in England since 1948, and it seems they still haven’t worked all the bugs out of the system. Here are some excerpts from an illuminating article in the left wing newspaper The Guardian:

A big variation in the performance of NHS trusts across England is revealed today in the health inspectorate’s annual survey of patients’ experiences.

In some hospitals more than three-quarters of inpatients said the standard of care was excellent, compared with less than one quarter in others.

In the best trusts, staff almost invariably helped frail patients to eat, but in the worst nearly half the people who needed assistance at mealtimes said they did not get it.

There was also a wide variation between hospitals in the quality of food, cleanliness, responsiveness to call buttons and the proportion of patients expected to share bathrooms and toilets with members of the opposite sex.

The level of quality care seems uneven at best. A hospital in West London had an approval rating of only 24%, almost as bad as Congress! Here is a ground breaking idea they just instituted:
“Since last month people have had the right to choose between any NHS hospital in England and any private clinic meeting the Department of Health’s standards on quality and cost.”


Imagine, you can now go to any hospital. Maybe we should try that.


Unfortunately effective infection control and good basic hygiene have gotten worse:


Norman Lamb, the Liberal Democrat health spokesman, said: “These results will make worrying reading for a government that claims to be committed to infection control and patient dignity. The key indicators of effective infection control – good basic hygiene – have got worse rather than better.”

The Department of Health responded by publishing research from last year showing patients were more concerned about hospital cleanliness than single-sex accommodation. A Mori poll showed 58% of patients thought staying clean in hospital was most important, compared with 17% who wanted single-sex wards.


When you get a toothache in Great Britain the quality of care you’ll be receiving is not your main concern, it’s just hoping you can find a dentist. The conservative  Telegraph has this story:


People who cannot get an NHS dentist are pulling their teeth out with pliers and using Superglue to put caps back.
So declared Mike Penning, from the Tory front bench, in a bid to destroy the “complacent” picture of dentistry painted by Alan Johnson, the Health Secretary.
Let us leave the glue on one side, or beneath whatever caps it may be holding in place: what worried some of us was the thought of the pliers.
Canada is also having a few problems with their nationalized health care system as reported in this article from the Canadian Medical Association:
It is well known that Canada is facing a shortage of maternity care providers in a trend that has been developing over the past two decades. This shortage is being felt most acutely in rural and remote communities. For years, maternity care has been provided in these communities by family physicians with the assistance of registered general nurses. Increasing numbers of family physicians are deciding not to provide intrapartum care. Rural hospitals are finding it equally difficult to attract nurses with maternity care experience.
In many cases, women and their families are leaving their home communities up to 4 weeks prior to their due dates and residing in hotels or with relatives until the birth of their baby. In the most remote communities, women are usually flown out alone, and accommodated in hostels located in large cities, completely unfamiliar to the expectant mothers. The emotional, social, and financial costs to these women and their families are immense.


It looks as though in order to get free health care we may have to give up a few perks such as “infection control” and “patient dignity.” And we may have to become more adept at home dentistry.


Maybe this is why the Democrats never give any examples of other countries where nationalized health care is a success worth emulating, because they can’t find any.

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Political Islam – a ‘European’ ideology?

Political Islam – a ‘European’ ideology?

Created 2008-05-14 15:34
An article written in December 2007 and published online in January 2008 has just attracted the attention of the spokesman for Islam, Integration and Extremism in the German Christian Democratic Union (CDU). The article is by the Grand Mufti of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Mustafa Ceric, and two things are remarkable about it at first sight. The first is its title, “The challenge of a single Muslim authority in Europe” (more on this in a moment); the second is the place of publication.
The article, which can be read online here, advocates the creation of a single global authority to regulate the religious and civil life of Muslims all over the world. It argues that the best place to start constructing such an authority is Europe itself.
The journal which has published this piece is European View, the journal of something called the Centre for European Studies, a mouthpiece of the European People’s Party (EPP), the parliamentary body in the European Parliament grouped around the German Christian Democrats. There is no doubt about the political affiliation of the journal: its editor, for instance, has an EPP e-mail address.
According to Kristina Köhler, the CDU spokesman on such matters, the article advocates extremism. On 12 May, she told Die Welt that the author was arguing that all Muslims in Europe should live under a common political and spiritual leader and under sharia law, and that the state should guarantee this parallel jurisdiction by treaty. “This would mean a European caliphate,” she said.
Ceric makes no bones about the fact that Muslims must obey shariah law. “The Islamic convenant, the shari’ah, is perpetual, it is not negotiable and it is not terminable,” he writes. According to him, “a European Muslim imamate” should be established “as a way of institutionalising Islam in Europe”. (By ‘imamate’ he means the application of shariah law in practice.) The author says that the two great strands of Islam, Sunnism and Shiism, should unite “with the objective of creating a global Muslim authority”. Ceric argues that Europe is specifically the best place to start creating such a global authority. He writes,

It is not enough that Europe recognises the presence of Islam on its territory. Muslims deserve more than that. They deserve that their presence be legalised in the sense of creating a political and economic climate in which European Muslims can represent themselves through the institutions that should have both governmental support and public acceptance.

This is the part of his text which Köhler attacks as implying “a parallel jurisdiction” and she is right. In a sense, we should not be surprised that such a call should come from a Bosnian. Bosnia precisely did have such parallel jurisdictions under Ottomon rule, with courts for Muslims and courts for non-Muslims. To some extent, the paraphernalia of minority rights, which became a centrepiece of the 1974 Yugoslav constitution and which continues to bedevil Bosnian politics to this day, is a hangover from that period: both stand in marked contrast to the English and French traditions of centralised statehood.
But what is really striking about the article – and what the Christian Democrat official naturally overlooks – is that the rise of a Muslim political identity (and even perhaps of a Muslim parallel jurisdiction of the kind which the Archbishop of Canterbury seemed to call in a recent and very controversial speech) is precisely made more likely by the weakening of national identity caused, in part, by the anti-national pan-European ideology of which the German CDU is one of the main propagators.
Ceric himself sees the link between Europeanism and political Islam very clearly. After a few concluding sentences which border on the threatening – European society is still too “immature” to realise the advantage of a single Muslim authority, yet it will come whatever the European political establishment now thinks – he concludes with this sentence:

A single Muslim authority in Europe will come sooner or later because of need by young European Muslims who are capable of seeing their Islamic identity as prior to their ethnic or national identities and who are comfortable with their European identity coexisting with their Islamic upbringing. [my emphasis – jl]

Elsewhere in the piece, the author makes the link between Islam as a “universal” religion and Muslims as “global citizens”. There is, in other words, a specific link between the proposal, which amounts to the creation of a global caliphate although Ceric does not use this term, and the general cosmopolitan ideology of globalism of which European integration is a key part. To put it bluntly, the stronger national identities, the weaker Islamic identity – and vice-versa.
Robert Dreyfuss makes the point, in his arresting work Devil’s Game: How the United States Helped Unleash Fundamentalist Islam, (New York: Henry Holt, 2005) that British and later American secret operatives deliberately supported pan-Islamic radicals in order to weaken nationalist leaders in the Arab world. The more such people were committed to the ummah, the less they would be interested in creating strong nation-states. Ceric seems to have the same view, since for him the need for a Muslim political authority rises as national identities weaken, whereas European “identity” is no threat to it at all. Could there be a clearer indictment of the suicidal nature of the EU’s project of dissolving national identity in Europe today?