The Heritage Foundation made something of a splash with its study suggesting that immigration reform will cost the public trillions. Past work by one of its co-authors helps put that piece in context.
Jason Richwine is relatively new to the think tank world. He received his PhD in public policy from Harvard in 2009, and joined Heritage after a brief stay at the American Enterprise Institute. Richwine’s doctoral dissertation is titled “IQ and Immigration Policy” the contents are well summarized in the dissertation abstract:
The statistical construct known as IQ can reliably estimate general mental ability, or intelligence. The average IQ of immigrants in the United States is substantially lower than that of the white native population, and the difference is likely to persist over several generations. The consequences are a lack of socioeconomic assimilation among low-IQ immigrant groups, more underclass behavior, less social trust, and an increase in the proportion of unskilled workers in the American labor market. Selecting high-IQ immigrants would ameliorate these problems in the U.S., while at the same time benefiting smart potential immigrants who lack educational access in their home countries.
Richwine’s dissertation asserts that there are deep-set differentials in intelligence between races. While it’s clear he thinks it is partly due to genetics — “the totality of the evidence suggests a genetic component to group differences in IQ” — he argues the most important thing is that the differences in group IQs are persistent, for whatever reason. He writes, “No one knows whether Hispanics will ever reach IQ parity with whites, but the prediction that new Hispanic immigrants will have low-IQ children and grandchildren is difficult to argue against.”
More: Heritage Study Co-Author Opposed Letting in Immigrants With Low IQs
Scratch an opponent of reasonable immigration reform, uncover a racist. Every time.
More on Jason Richwine from the SPLC,
“The argument that immigrants themselves are no different from the ones that came 100 years ago I think is quite wrong, and I think that the major difference here is ethnicity — or race, if you will.” Not only do people of the same race tend to stick together, Richwine said, but “races differ in all sorts of ways, and probably the most important way is in IQ.”
Not surprisingly, Richwine’s remarks were warmly received on white nationalist blogs. “Definitely someone we want to keep our eye on,” wrote Marcus Epstein on the blog of the anti-immigration hate site vdare.com.
“[His] name sounds Jewish, which makes what follows even more remarkable,” crowed Larry Auster, who runs the blog View from the Right.
Richwine joined Krikorian and Fred Siegal, a professor at Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, for the July 1 discussion at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), an influential, conservative think tank based in Washington, D.C. Richwine, who is completing a dissertation on immigration and IQ, is a National Research Initiative fellow at AEI and will remain there after finishing his degree this fall. He joins AEI-sponsored scholar Charles Murray, co-author of The Bell Curve, the highly controversial 1994 book that argues that blacks and Latinos have lower IQs than whites and that most social welfare and affirmative action programs are doomed to failure as a result.
Read the whole thing.