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Campaign Strategy Memo to ¡Jeb!: Speaking Spanish Is Uncool, Even to Spanish-speakers
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I understand why Jeb Bush would assume that his campaigning in Spanish about how Donald Trump isn’t a true conservative makes Jeb look cool. After all, his wife only speaks Spanish, and who is cooler than Columba Bush?

What Jeb doesn’t comprehend is that speaking Spanish isn’t very cool these days even to Spanish-speakers everywhere in the U.S. except Miami. Jeb lives in South Florida where there are a lot of rich, stylish upper crust folks from Latin America, so he gets a distorted picture. Sure, Jeb’s world is full of Ferrari-driving Spanish-speakers who are worried that Trump might undermine the carried interest deduction for hedge funds. But Jeb attacking Trump in Spanish for not being a true blue Republican reflects the peculiar demographics of Jeb’s daily world.

The current uncoolness of Spanish in the rest of the country can be seen in the lack of demand in America for current pop culture products dubbed into Spanish. For example, even in Southern California, blockbuster movies are seldom released dubbed into Spanish. I could drive today to the City of Commerce to see Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation with Spanish subtitles, but I can’t find any evidence that the Tom Cruise movie is playing dubbed into Spanish anywhere in Southern California. At the City of Commerce theater, eight of the 14 films are showing with Spanish subtitles, but none are dubbed.

Here in the San Fernando Valley, home to 700,000 Latinos, Mission Impossible doesn’t appear to be playing even with Spanish subtitles anywhere. At the Plant 16 (owned by the same chain as the City of Commerce theater) in largely Hispanic Van Nuys, a working class but not impoverished part of the San Fernando Valley, none of the current 16 screens are showing Spanish subtitles, much less using Spanish dubbing. (Later this week an animated film from Mexico in Spanish will be debuting there, however.)

This isn’t part of a conspiracy by Hollywood to assimilate young Latinos into speaking English. If there was much demand, the industry would be happy to meet it. For example, when searching Google for a general article about dubbing movies into Spanish for release in America, the most recent one I found was this one from 1986 about how Steven Spielberg was experimenting with having films he produced like E.T. and American Tail released in Los Angeles dubbed into Spanish.

But that hasn’t much caught on over the last 29 years. Why? One reason is because young people in Van Nuys associate speaking Spanish with talking to their grandmothers. In contrast, when they go out on the town, they want to hear Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Chris Pratt or Adam Sandler speaking English, because English is cool. Spanish isn’t.

 
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  1. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    With the inevitable secondary market on South-Am. region DVDs & then playing on Univision/Telemundo/Fox Mas* [*I am not sure of this network’s name] you’d think it wouldn’t cost them much more to include the Spanish dubbing at the time of release (if anything, it might be more efficient from an accounting & artistic perspective). What does the exhibitor research show? Do non-English-hearing patrons spend less on sodas, Milk Duds, etc.? Anecdotally I recall a childhood friend whose first-generation Latina mom always smuggled in her own supply in an extra-large handbag whenever our trio would take in Hollywood’s finest at the local cinema. This was back when they didn’t have to pay a security guard to monitor the audience with night vision for piracy.

    Delivery of dubbing other than by headphone jack obviously presents a zero-sum audience problem, so is it actually a matter of old Mexican folks not having their own audiophile headsets to bring with? Don’t forget that since theatrical presentations went to the all-digital format (a self-destructing hard-drive device is used, in fact) it’s entirely wrung the profit out of being a movie theater owner. I suspect the studio can even revoke your movie’s decryption key if you don’t meet a daily ticket quota. Also, isn’t this projecting some dimly remembered past (probably fictional) of Italian/Jewish non-English-speaking immigrants in the Lower East Side eagerly watching Al Jolson (or whatever), onto more insular Latinos who may not care? They have plenty of Spanish movies already

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
    @Anonymous


    Do non-English-hearing patrons spend less on sodas, Milk Duds, etc.?
     
    It doesn't appear so judging by their obesity rates. But maybe they're smuggling Bimbo products from the barrio's panaderia into the theater in their huge pockets. Why else would you wear a coat in LA? (Besides concealed carry.)
  2. alt+0161+Yeb+! = ¡Yeb!

    Another one I like is Juan Ellis Bush

    • Agree: Priss Factor
  3. Campaigning for Americans against Mexico.

    Campaigning for Mexicans against Americans.

    Trump has the ears of the voters, Bush the ears of the elites.

  4. Pat Casey says:

    Speaking of spanish-speaking being uncool, I forget which of the late night shows it is (or was) but there’s a guy on one who plays the perfect wetback and just stands there and smiles when they make beaner cracks about him. I’ve always wondered why SJWs don’t make a stink. But come to think, its whichever late night show they film in LA, and now I’m smiling at the thought of Adam Carolla…

    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous
    @Pat Casey

    I think its the one with the idiot that cried over the lion.

    I've always wondered about this phenomenon too. For example, in the following clip at 5:30 Conan O'Brien makes a joke that basically amounts to pointing and saying "you're gay! Ha ha!" Why do they get away with it?

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=sP-IX4mdnFY

    Replies: @Anonymous

    , @Anonymous
    @Pat Casey

    That's Jimmy Kimmel's show, which has the short Mexican sidekick who speaks broken English and is the butt of jokes. The Chelsea Handler show, which I don't think is on any longer, was also a recent late night show that had a short Mexican sidekick who spoke broken English and was the butt of jokes. You do raise an interesting point about how these shows seem to get away with it.

    Replies: @Bill B., @Brutusale

  5. It might have been kind of cool back in the 70’s when he was wooing that vixen of his. Fvery Don Juan, que no?

    Course, Jeb strikes me as the type of guy to have been one of the first guys in his frat to have drunk real Tequila. And he’s been dining out on such adventurousness ever since.

    Note how he chastises Trump for not being Conservative enough. Bush doesn’t/can’t understand that what constitutes Conservative, might, just might, have changed since Daddy was in office. He’s offended someone, Trump, is thinking for himself. How dare he!? You aren’t supposed to be able to do that! Daddy?

    • Replies: @Luke Lea
    @asdf


    "He’s offended someone, Trump, is thinking for himself."
     
    Right. Trump is inner-directed whereas all the other candidates are other-directed (by their handlers, pollsters, speach writers, donors, etc.). The distinction was a big deal in pop sociology back in the 1950's, only then it referred to the influence of one's peers and colleagues; political correctness is a good example of other-directedness in that original sense, something which Trump "doesn't have time for."
  6. I think Steve is hitting on something important here – Spanish really isn’t as cool as it used to be.

    Back when Jeb!’s brother was selling himself as fluent in Spanish 15 years ago, it arguably was cool.

    But I think a combination of the The War On Terror and the rise of China kind of put a kibosh on that. It looked cosmopolitan to brush up on your Spanish fifteen years ago, now it looks parochial.

    Mandarin or Arabic, that’s where the smart kids are heading.

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    @Anthrobeast

    "But I think a combination of the The War On Terror and the rise of China kind of put a kibosh on that. It looked cosmopolitan to brush up on your Spanish fifteen years ago, now it looks parochial.

    Mandarin or Arabic, that’s where the smart kids are heading."

    Jeff Daniels tells Joseph Gordon Levitt's character in Looper that he should learn to speak Chinese because it is the language of the future. No mention of Spanish being the language of the future. Which is not surprising because neither Mexico nor any other Spanish speaking country will ever surpass China's economy.

    Replies: @iSteveFan

    , @Daniel H
    @Anthrobeast

    >>Mandarin or Arabic, that’s where the smart kids are heading.

    Why would any smart man or woman waste time learning Arabic? The Arab world has never produced anything of value. Not in culture, science, commerce or ethics. Arab history has been a sinkhole of futility. Arabic is truly for losers.

    Replies: @Das

  7. Spanish might not be cool for MexAm teens in LA, but Spainairds and Latin Americans are very impressed when a gringo speaks fluent Spanish, as are white girls who see me speaking Spanish to the maid and at restaurants. It has to be fast though, slow high school Spnaish sounds dopey.

    I am similarly impressed when I see a white speaking an East Asian language.

    The teen uncoolness is probably less about media than the strong aspirational whiteness among most mestizos.

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    @Lot

    "The teen uncoolness is probably less about media than the strong aspirational whiteness among most mestizos."

    Since when did most Mestizos in the U.S aspire to become White? Whenever I see Mestizo stand up comedians like George Lopez, Carlos Mencia, and Gabriel Iglesias for example talk about White people, they never say us White people because they do not include themselves in the White category. They always say them White people to make it clear that they are different from them.

    The only Hispanic stand up comedian who refers to himself as White is Louis C.K, but he is not a Mestizo. He is a ginger haired Hungarian Jew Irishman.

    Replies: @Lot

    , @SteveO
    @Lot


    as are white girls who see me speaking Spanish to the maid and at restaurants.
     
    I think they would be even more impressed if you spoke good French or Italian; they would be amazed and fascinated if you spoke Russian even passably well.

    In other words, it doesn't have anything to do with Spanish per se. You are benefiting from the astonishment that Americans often feel at encountering one of their number who can speak any language other than English beyond a basic level.

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Marat

  8. Makes one wonder “Does ¡Jeb! shout words of encouragement in Español after prepping Columba’s Bull???”

  9. Yeah, Jeb seems to be operating on the theory that the United States is just Florida writ large, so the approach he used successfully in Florida will translate seamlessly to the national stage.

    In Florida’s political climate, seeing politicians switch effortlessly between Spanish and English is seen as no biggie, even for redneck voters, because everybody just writes it off as “oh, they’re pandering to the Cuban vote again.” Since Cubans aren’t (yet) seen as a wholly owned and operated subsidiary of the Democratic party, Republicans here don’t mind it that much. Jeb doesn’t seem to get that this sort of thing plays very differently in Iowa.

    On the other hand, it does suggest that ethnic grievance groups who want real political power would be advised to spread themselves a little more widely across the political spectrum. Cubans, like Jews, have been very successful in getting their policy preferences set in stone precisely because they’ve been so good at avoiding being tied exclusively to one party — thus a Republican who panders to Cuban donors isn’t seen as “selling out” his redneck constituents.

    The non-Cuban “Hispanic vote,” though, is still seen as monolithically Democratic and leftist, despite the best efforts of lobbyists — therefore, a GOP candidate who openly panders to Hispanics gets tagged as a Democrat in sheep’s clothing.

    Or to put it in a way that iSteve readers might appreciate: While everybody knows most Jews are Democrats, everyone also knows there are some very loud, red-meat right-wing Jewish Republicans, so most white, Christian Republican voters aren’t terribly threatened by a Republican who talks up Jewish issues. There’s a similar dynamic at work in Florida with politicians pandering to Cubans. But where are all the loud, red-meat, right-wing Mexican-American activists and intellectuals? Where’s the Mexican-American version of Rush Limbaugh that Hispanics can point to and say, “see? Letting us have our way doesn’t have to be so bad.”

    If La Raza or Black Lives Matter want to take it to the next level, maybe they need to develop their own neocon wings… 🙂

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    @Mr. Blank

    "But where are all the loud, red-meat, right-wing Mexican-American activists and intellectuals? "

    There are more right wing political pundits on television who are African American than there are Mexicans. Where is the Mexican version of Larry Elder and Thomas Sowell?

    There is a Mexican guy who goes on The O'Reilly Factor often, his name is Ruben Navarrette. But he is a Centrist middle of the road guy and not a Right Winger, so he does not count. He can not be called the Mexican version of Charles Payne.

    , @Ivy
    @Mr. Blank

    Florida has a few other characteristics, one being too many residents with an ethically casual attitude. When I started doing business in Florida, veterans said to note that the rules were different there. That played out in daily negotiations and follow-up on items that would have been routine in other states.

    They say that if you're lucky, you stand a chance of getting what you paid for. Among other things, that means that you have to pin down the specifics in great detail when you want something. That also seems to provide the locals a sense of a lot of wiggle room to try to weasel out of things. I brought my weasel hunting license and that seemed to speed things up. No wonder Jebbie fits right into the Florida scene.

    , @Lot
    @Mr. Blank


    But where are all the loud, red-meat, right-wing Mexican-American activists and intellectuals?
     
    Maybe you should say: But where are all the [...] Mexican-American activists and intellectuals?

    Intellectual types stay in Mexico. The country has a touching commitment to public education, so even the poorest areas, the Indio south excepted, potential intellectuals are kept in school and sent to college for free.

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Steve Sailer

    , @Intelligent Dasein
    @Mr. Blank

    Is it just possible that Malcolm X was moving in that direction? If he'd had another ten years to develop, who knows.

  10. So three weeks from now when native Spanish speaker Pope Francis arrives in the US to lecture you on immigration his message will be cooler, and thus resonate more, if he does it in English?

    • Replies: @Intelligent Dasein
    @Matra

    I really don't think anybody was making that argument.

  11. I guarantee no one is learning English because they want to sound cool like Adam Sandler.

    • Replies: @Father O'Hara
    @Foseti

    They want to sound like kanye!

    , @asdf
    @Foseti

    Maybe not. But then again. Sandler is doing good biz. Care to tell us who his competition is?

  12. Wanna know a big fat irony?

    Bush 41 criticized Michael Dukakis in the 1988 campaign for campaigning to Hispanic voters in Spanish.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @countenance

    In 1988, shy, retiring, introverted Columba Bush gave a short speech on national TV from the floor of the Republican National Convention. Of course, she gave it in Spanish, so she did fine.

    Replies: @Marat

  13. @Pat Casey
    Speaking of spanish-speaking being uncool, I forget which of the late night shows it is (or was) but there's a guy on one who plays the perfect wetback and just stands there and smiles when they make beaner cracks about him. I've always wondered why SJWs don't make a stink. But come to think, its whichever late night show they film in LA, and now I'm smiling at the thought of Adam Carolla...

    Replies: @Chrisnonymous, @Anonymous

    I think its the one with the idiot that cried over the lion.

    I’ve always wondered about this phenomenon too. For example, in the following clip at 5:30 Conan O’Brien makes a joke that basically amounts to pointing and saying “you’re gay! Ha ha!” Why do they get away with it?

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    @Chrisnonymous

    There was also this from Conan recently making fun of Marco Rubio:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CNLuxK39jfs

    Replies: @Jefferson

  14. Univision is owned by an Israeli billionaire who buys and puppeteers politicians in his spare time.

    Jorge Ramos is a blue eyed atheist.

    Ah yes, Univision and Ramos, the authentic voice of Mexico.

    All the lies and tricks and propaganda fall down. Comes a Trumpening.

    Balls, Walls, Backbone.

  15. Jeb needs to start speaking Nahuatl. Beneath Jeb’s soft, Spanish speaking exterior is the hardest of men, who knows the screams of 20,000 as their blood flows knee-high for Huitzilopochtli.

    • Replies: @IBC
    @Anonymous

    Yes, his talking points would actually make more sense to an English-speaking audience then. Actually, he's lucky that he wasn't around 500 years ago when that sort of stuff was actually happening. His large frame and full girth would have made for a comfortable skin-suit for the Aztec sacrificial priests to wear à la Silence of the Lambs:

    http://mobile.nytimes.com/images/100000002552271/2013/11/15/arts/design/the-salon-art-design-a-wide-range-at-park-avenue-armory.html?_r=0

    And you can bet that Hillary would have traded her power-suit for one of those if she'd been alive back then.

  16. In Asia at least, subtitles are greatly preferred by movies audiences over dubbing due to the poor quality of dubbing in general, as well as its interference with the overall soundscape of the movie.

    Subtitles are also cheaper for film studios to implement.

  17. @countenance
    Wanna know a big fat irony?

    Bush 41 criticized Michael Dukakis in the 1988 campaign for campaigning to Hispanic voters in Spanish.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer

    In 1988, shy, retiring, introverted Columba Bush gave a short speech on national TV from the floor of the Republican National Convention. Of course, she gave it in Spanish, so she did fine.

    • Replies: @Marat
    @Steve Sailer

    Well, it might be good (for the country) that Jeb doggedly go down this path. Afterall, all of the Spanish-speaking enthusiasts will vote for him (to the extent of the Hispanic voter turnout rate). Still stickin' to that Tried and True GOP HispanderVote Tactic!

    It's wonderful for Trump because his supporters will be more motivated to vote as they hear Spanish everytime they see Bush and make that grating association. Trump's job is to get his supporters annoyed enough to make it their business to get to the polls. That Yebbe is too lazy to tack and make any midcourse corrections is a plus for The Donald. Yebbe's being a good helper! Jeb gets big majority of Hispanic votes and Trump gets the election!

    Replies: @iSteveFan

  18. Cheaper, more utilitarian consumer products often have bilingual labels in Spanish, while with more expensive things French is the second language of choice.

    Peter

    • Replies: @SteveO
    @prosa123


    Cheaper, more utilitarian consumer products often have bilingual labels in Spanish, while with more expensive things French is the second language of choice.
     
    Or, often, all three. Isn't the French translation related to the North American market rather than pretensions to being upscale? If the product is to be sold in Canada, it needs French labeling.

    Then there's IKEA, where playing "identify the squiggly writing" (hmm ... Armenian or Khmer? Let's go to Wikipedia!) in the warranty statement makes for a good break from attempting to decipher the directions, which are apparently written in Martian pictographs.
  19. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Pat Casey
    Speaking of spanish-speaking being uncool, I forget which of the late night shows it is (or was) but there's a guy on one who plays the perfect wetback and just stands there and smiles when they make beaner cracks about him. I've always wondered why SJWs don't make a stink. But come to think, its whichever late night show they film in LA, and now I'm smiling at the thought of Adam Carolla...

    Replies: @Chrisnonymous, @Anonymous

    That’s Jimmy Kimmel’s show, which has the short Mexican sidekick who speaks broken English and is the butt of jokes. The Chelsea Handler show, which I don’t think is on any longer, was also a recent late night show that had a short Mexican sidekick who spoke broken English and was the butt of jokes. You do raise an interesting point about how these shows seem to get away with it.

    • Replies: @Bill B.
    @Anonymous

    Also Fawlty Towers.

    After one minute.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ljN72NVHgww

    , @Brutusale
    @Anonymous

    The Simpson's slapstick Bumblebee Man made it safe.

  20. Watching dubbed movies just sucks. Even if you don’t know the language, subtitles are better.

    The Hispanics in Van Nuys have the right idea.

    • Replies: @Priss Factor
    @Rotten

    "Watching dubbed movies just sucks. Even if you don’t know the language, subtitles are better."

    True 99% of the time.

    But there are few exceptions.

    The English dubbed version of SEVEN BEAUTIES is actually better than the Italian original. It is so well-done. One thing about Italian movies... so many of them cast foreign actors speaking their own language that was later dubbed into Italian that it doesn't matter in some cases. Take Burt Lancaster in THE LEOPARD and Broderick Crawford in IL BIDONE. And Quinn in LA STRADA.
    And so many other examples.

    And of course, the old Kung Fu movies are only good with English dubbings.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GQ4vrWiJiLQ

  21. @Chrisnonymous
    @Pat Casey

    I think its the one with the idiot that cried over the lion.

    I've always wondered about this phenomenon too. For example, in the following clip at 5:30 Conan O'Brien makes a joke that basically amounts to pointing and saying "you're gay! Ha ha!" Why do they get away with it?

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=sP-IX4mdnFY

    Replies: @Anonymous

    There was also this from Conan recently making fun of Marco Rubio:

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    @Anonymous

    That Hispanic kid looks more Brown than Marco Rubio. I guess they could not find a lighter skin Hispanic kid to play Marco Rubio.

  22. @Anthrobeast
    I think Steve is hitting on something important here - Spanish really isn't as cool as it used to be.

    Back when Jeb!'s brother was selling himself as fluent in Spanish 15 years ago, it arguably was cool.

    But I think a combination of the The War On Terror and the rise of China kind of put a kibosh on that. It looked cosmopolitan to brush up on your Spanish fifteen years ago, now it looks parochial.

    Mandarin or Arabic, that's where the smart kids are heading.

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Daniel H

    “But I think a combination of the The War On Terror and the rise of China kind of put a kibosh on that. It looked cosmopolitan to brush up on your Spanish fifteen years ago, now it looks parochial.

    Mandarin or Arabic, that’s where the smart kids are heading.”

    Jeff Daniels tells Joseph Gordon Levitt’s character in Looper that he should learn to speak Chinese because it is the language of the future. No mention of Spanish being the language of the future. Which is not surprising because neither Mexico nor any other Spanish speaking country will ever surpass China’s economy.

    • Replies: @iSteveFan
    @Jefferson


    Jeff Daniels tells Joseph Gordon Levitt’s character in Looper that he should learn to speak Chinese because it is the language of the future.
     
    I have no doubt China will have great influence due to its large economy and population. But will their language become widespread outside of China? It seems that English has too large a head start with non-native speakers for anything else to overtake it. English also seems easier to learn, especially the alphabet, and its so prolific in movies and the internet, I don't think it will be displaced any time soon.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @jtgw, @Romanian

  23. Priss Factor [AKA "skiapolemistis"] says:
    @Rotten
    Watching dubbed movies just sucks. Even if you don't know the language, subtitles are better.

    The Hispanics in Van Nuys have the right idea.

    Replies: @Priss Factor

    “Watching dubbed movies just sucks. Even if you don’t know the language, subtitles are better.”

    True 99% of the time.

    But there are few exceptions.

    The English dubbed version of SEVEN BEAUTIES is actually better than the Italian original. It is so well-done. One thing about Italian movies… so many of them cast foreign actors speaking their own language that was later dubbed into Italian that it doesn’t matter in some cases. Take Burt Lancaster in THE LEOPARD and Broderick Crawford in IL BIDONE. And Quinn in LA STRADA.
    And so many other examples.

    And of course, the old Kung Fu movies are only good with English dubbings.

  24. Has anyone else noticed that in the last week or so, Jeb Bush has stopped wearing his child molester glasses and switched to light-weight wire rim glasses? His “handlers” must be in a panic.

  25. @Anonymous
    @Chrisnonymous

    There was also this from Conan recently making fun of Marco Rubio:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CNLuxK39jfs

    Replies: @Jefferson

    That Hispanic kid looks more Brown than Marco Rubio. I guess they could not find a lighter skin Hispanic kid to play Marco Rubio.

  26. @Foseti
    I guarantee no one is learning English because they want to sound cool like Adam Sandler.

    Replies: @Father O'Hara, @asdf

    They want to sound like kanye!

  27. @Lot
    Spanish might not be cool for MexAm teens in LA, but Spainairds and Latin Americans are very impressed when a gringo speaks fluent Spanish, as are white girls who see me speaking Spanish to the maid and at restaurants. It has to be fast though, slow high school Spnaish sounds dopey.

    I am similarly impressed when I see a white speaking an East Asian language.

    The teen uncoolness is probably less about media than the strong aspirational whiteness among most mestizos.

    Replies: @Jefferson, @SteveO

    “The teen uncoolness is probably less about media than the strong aspirational whiteness among most mestizos.”

    Since when did most Mestizos in the U.S aspire to become White? Whenever I see Mestizo stand up comedians like George Lopez, Carlos Mencia, and Gabriel Iglesias for example talk about White people, they never say us White people because they do not include themselves in the White category. They always say them White people to make it clear that they are different from them.

    The only Hispanic stand up comedian who refers to himself as White is Louis C.K, but he is not a Mestizo. He is a ginger haired Hungarian Jew Irishman.

    • Replies: @Lot
    @Jefferson


    Since when did most Mestizos in the U.S aspire to become White?
     
    Most, but far from all. Many have adopted hard-core La Raza ideology, or have assimilated into the underclass.

    But far more are fans of white culture, would live in a white neighborhood if they could afford it, and strongly prefer their children go to school and marry white.

    Replies: @Jefferson

  28. @Mr. Blank
    Yeah, Jeb seems to be operating on the theory that the United States is just Florida writ large, so the approach he used successfully in Florida will translate seamlessly to the national stage.

    In Florida's political climate, seeing politicians switch effortlessly between Spanish and English is seen as no biggie, even for redneck voters, because everybody just writes it off as "oh, they're pandering to the Cuban vote again." Since Cubans aren't (yet) seen as a wholly owned and operated subsidiary of the Democratic party, Republicans here don't mind it that much. Jeb doesn't seem to get that this sort of thing plays very differently in Iowa.

    On the other hand, it does suggest that ethnic grievance groups who want real political power would be advised to spread themselves a little more widely across the political spectrum. Cubans, like Jews, have been very successful in getting their policy preferences set in stone precisely because they've been so good at avoiding being tied exclusively to one party — thus a Republican who panders to Cuban donors isn't seen as "selling out" his redneck constituents.

    The non-Cuban "Hispanic vote," though, is still seen as monolithically Democratic and leftist, despite the best efforts of lobbyists — therefore, a GOP candidate who openly panders to Hispanics gets tagged as a Democrat in sheep's clothing.

    Or to put it in a way that iSteve readers might appreciate: While everybody knows most Jews are Democrats, everyone also knows there are some very loud, red-meat right-wing Jewish Republicans, so most white, Christian Republican voters aren't terribly threatened by a Republican who talks up Jewish issues. There's a similar dynamic at work in Florida with politicians pandering to Cubans. But where are all the loud, red-meat, right-wing Mexican-American activists and intellectuals? Where's the Mexican-American version of Rush Limbaugh that Hispanics can point to and say, "see? Letting us have our way doesn't have to be so bad."

    If La Raza or Black Lives Matter want to take it to the next level, maybe they need to develop their own neocon wings... :)

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Ivy, @Lot, @Intelligent Dasein

    “But where are all the loud, red-meat, right-wing Mexican-American activists and intellectuals? ”

    There are more right wing political pundits on television who are African American than there are Mexicans. Where is the Mexican version of Larry Elder and Thomas Sowell?

    There is a Mexican guy who goes on The O’Reilly Factor often, his name is Ruben Navarrette. But he is a Centrist middle of the road guy and not a Right Winger, so he does not count. He can not be called the Mexican version of Charles Payne.

  29. @asdf
    It might have been kind of cool back in the 70's when he was wooing that vixen of his. Fvery Don Juan, que no?

    Course, Jeb strikes me as the type of guy to have been one of the first guys in his frat to have drunk real Tequila. And he's been dining out on such adventurousness ever since.

    Note how he chastises Trump for not being Conservative enough. Bush doesn't/can't understand that what constitutes Conservative, might, just might, have changed since Daddy was in office. He's offended someone, Trump, is thinking for himself. How dare he!? You aren't supposed to be able to do that! Daddy?

    Replies: @Luke Lea

    “He’s offended someone, Trump, is thinking for himself.”

    Right. Trump is inner-directed whereas all the other candidates are other-directed (by their handlers, pollsters, speach writers, donors, etc.). The distinction was a big deal in pop sociology back in the 1950’s, only then it referred to the influence of one’s peers and colleagues; political correctness is a good example of other-directedness in that original sense, something which Trump “doesn’t have time for.”

  30. @Foseti
    I guarantee no one is learning English because they want to sound cool like Adam Sandler.

    Replies: @Father O'Hara, @asdf

    Maybe not. But then again. Sandler is doing good biz. Care to tell us who his competition is?

  31. This is just a simply brilliant observation. Just shows how clueless the Republican Establishment is.

    The one time I was in Miami Beach, I ended up being dragged to a nightclub that was 100% Columbian. I was the only non-Columbian in the joint and I was concerned as to what to expect. I was without a doubt in the lowest income bracket in the nightclub. The crowd consisted of the children of Columbian oligarchs who lived in Miami. They were some of the nicest and politest people I have ever met in a nightclub setting. The women were gorgeous and the men were mostly coddled rich kids. I was by far the toughest guy in the place and I can rarely say that unless I am visiting a retirement home.

    Contrast that with three years ago when I went to a Dodgers game. I stopped in a East LA bar near Dodger Stadium on a weekday afternoon. I was probably one of four “Anglos” (as they say in California, although I don’t identify as such) in the entire bar. I have no hesitation in saying that I was the least tough guy in the bar. I also had the least tattoos. My guess is that my Spanish was better than the majority of the Latinos in the bar, none of whom were immigrants. Things were definitely not looking up, until “Paradise City” came on the juke box. Those East LA Mexican biker dudes love them some G’n’R! These are people I can deal with.

    Ferrari driving, trust fund Columbians in Miami Beach, not so much.

    • Replies: @AP
    @Clifford Brown

    Interesting observations. I had a similar experience to your Miami one, at an upscale nightclub in Tijuana where the local elites hung out (far from where American sailors go). Very nice, well-dressed, civilized, gracious people. Other than one rich-looking middle-aged blonde American guy we appeared to be the only non-Mexicans there; the locals of course looked Spanish more than Indian. This was before the recent violent times.

    Now, can you imagine yourself in an all-Muslim environment? Or in Compton in the 90s? Not that mass flooding the USA with Latinos (or anybody else) is a good thing, but it puts this problem in perspective.

  32. @Mr. Blank
    Yeah, Jeb seems to be operating on the theory that the United States is just Florida writ large, so the approach he used successfully in Florida will translate seamlessly to the national stage.

    In Florida's political climate, seeing politicians switch effortlessly between Spanish and English is seen as no biggie, even for redneck voters, because everybody just writes it off as "oh, they're pandering to the Cuban vote again." Since Cubans aren't (yet) seen as a wholly owned and operated subsidiary of the Democratic party, Republicans here don't mind it that much. Jeb doesn't seem to get that this sort of thing plays very differently in Iowa.

    On the other hand, it does suggest that ethnic grievance groups who want real political power would be advised to spread themselves a little more widely across the political spectrum. Cubans, like Jews, have been very successful in getting their policy preferences set in stone precisely because they've been so good at avoiding being tied exclusively to one party — thus a Republican who panders to Cuban donors isn't seen as "selling out" his redneck constituents.

    The non-Cuban "Hispanic vote," though, is still seen as monolithically Democratic and leftist, despite the best efforts of lobbyists — therefore, a GOP candidate who openly panders to Hispanics gets tagged as a Democrat in sheep's clothing.

    Or to put it in a way that iSteve readers might appreciate: While everybody knows most Jews are Democrats, everyone also knows there are some very loud, red-meat right-wing Jewish Republicans, so most white, Christian Republican voters aren't terribly threatened by a Republican who talks up Jewish issues. There's a similar dynamic at work in Florida with politicians pandering to Cubans. But where are all the loud, red-meat, right-wing Mexican-American activists and intellectuals? Where's the Mexican-American version of Rush Limbaugh that Hispanics can point to and say, "see? Letting us have our way doesn't have to be so bad."

    If La Raza or Black Lives Matter want to take it to the next level, maybe they need to develop their own neocon wings... :)

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Ivy, @Lot, @Intelligent Dasein

    Florida has a few other characteristics, one being too many residents with an ethically casual attitude. When I started doing business in Florida, veterans said to note that the rules were different there. That played out in daily negotiations and follow-up on items that would have been routine in other states.

    They say that if you’re lucky, you stand a chance of getting what you paid for. Among other things, that means that you have to pin down the specifics in great detail when you want something. That also seems to provide the locals a sense of a lot of wiggle room to try to weasel out of things. I brought my weasel hunting license and that seemed to speed things up. No wonder Jebbie fits right into the Florida scene.

  33. @Jefferson
    @Lot

    "The teen uncoolness is probably less about media than the strong aspirational whiteness among most mestizos."

    Since when did most Mestizos in the U.S aspire to become White? Whenever I see Mestizo stand up comedians like George Lopez, Carlos Mencia, and Gabriel Iglesias for example talk about White people, they never say us White people because they do not include themselves in the White category. They always say them White people to make it clear that they are different from them.

    The only Hispanic stand up comedian who refers to himself as White is Louis C.K, but he is not a Mestizo. He is a ginger haired Hungarian Jew Irishman.

    Replies: @Lot

    Since when did most Mestizos in the U.S aspire to become White?

    Most, but far from all. Many have adopted hard-core La Raza ideology, or have assimilated into the underclass.

    But far more are fans of white culture, would live in a white neighborhood if they could afford it, and strongly prefer their children go to school and marry white.

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    @Lot

    "But far more are fans of white culture, would live in a white neighborhood if they could afford it, and strongly prefer their children go to school and marry white."

    Mexicans in the U.S as a group are certainly not culturally assimilating into Whiteness with their high rates of joining street gangs, teenage motherhood, and high school drop outs. American born Mexicans are even more likely than Mexican Immigrants to join street gangs. Mexicans are culturally assimilating into underclass urban inner city African American culture.

    Also since when did wanting to live in a White neighborhood = wanting to assimilate into Whiteness. Most African Americans would also want to live in a White neighborhood if they could afford it.

    Mexicans in the U.S know their neighborhoods suck, so they see White Gringo neighborhoods as greener pastures. It is strictly about wanting to have a higher standard of living and nothing to do with wanting to become White. Carlos Mencia for example lives in affluent White neighborhood, but he still does not see himself as White and nor he want to be White.

    By your logic, all 3rd world Nonwhite Immigrants come to 1st World White countries because they want to become White.

  34. @Mr. Blank
    Yeah, Jeb seems to be operating on the theory that the United States is just Florida writ large, so the approach he used successfully in Florida will translate seamlessly to the national stage.

    In Florida's political climate, seeing politicians switch effortlessly between Spanish and English is seen as no biggie, even for redneck voters, because everybody just writes it off as "oh, they're pandering to the Cuban vote again." Since Cubans aren't (yet) seen as a wholly owned and operated subsidiary of the Democratic party, Republicans here don't mind it that much. Jeb doesn't seem to get that this sort of thing plays very differently in Iowa.

    On the other hand, it does suggest that ethnic grievance groups who want real political power would be advised to spread themselves a little more widely across the political spectrum. Cubans, like Jews, have been very successful in getting their policy preferences set in stone precisely because they've been so good at avoiding being tied exclusively to one party — thus a Republican who panders to Cuban donors isn't seen as "selling out" his redneck constituents.

    The non-Cuban "Hispanic vote," though, is still seen as monolithically Democratic and leftist, despite the best efforts of lobbyists — therefore, a GOP candidate who openly panders to Hispanics gets tagged as a Democrat in sheep's clothing.

    Or to put it in a way that iSteve readers might appreciate: While everybody knows most Jews are Democrats, everyone also knows there are some very loud, red-meat right-wing Jewish Republicans, so most white, Christian Republican voters aren't terribly threatened by a Republican who talks up Jewish issues. There's a similar dynamic at work in Florida with politicians pandering to Cubans. But where are all the loud, red-meat, right-wing Mexican-American activists and intellectuals? Where's the Mexican-American version of Rush Limbaugh that Hispanics can point to and say, "see? Letting us have our way doesn't have to be so bad."

    If La Raza or Black Lives Matter want to take it to the next level, maybe they need to develop their own neocon wings... :)

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Ivy, @Lot, @Intelligent Dasein

    But where are all the loud, red-meat, right-wing Mexican-American activists and intellectuals?

    Maybe you should say: But where are all the […] Mexican-American activists and intellectuals?

    Intellectual types stay in Mexico. The country has a touching commitment to public education, so even the poorest areas, the Indio south excepted, potential intellectuals are kept in school and sent to college for free.

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    @Lot

    "Maybe you should say: But where are all the [...] Mexican-American activists and intellectuals?"

    There are plenty of Mexican American political activists in the U.S, but they all politically lean to the Left. Julian Castro, Jorge Ramos, Janet Murguia, Eric Garcetti, Eva Longoria, Bill Richardson, Antonio Villaraigosa, John Quinones, etc.

    There are the Mexican American elites in the U.S and they all hate guys like Donald Trump and Dennis Michael Lynch.

    , @Steve Sailer
    @Lot

    The Mexican government traditionally bought off its intellectuals. Instead of sending them to the gulag, it made them highly paid college professors (in the 1970s, college professors in Mexico were paid the same amount as college professors in America) or ambassadors.

    Like I've been saying, the Mexican government isn't stupid.

    Replies: @Veracitor

  35. @Lot
    Spanish might not be cool for MexAm teens in LA, but Spainairds and Latin Americans are very impressed when a gringo speaks fluent Spanish, as are white girls who see me speaking Spanish to the maid and at restaurants. It has to be fast though, slow high school Spnaish sounds dopey.

    I am similarly impressed when I see a white speaking an East Asian language.

    The teen uncoolness is probably less about media than the strong aspirational whiteness among most mestizos.

    Replies: @Jefferson, @SteveO

    as are white girls who see me speaking Spanish to the maid and at restaurants.

    I think they would be even more impressed if you spoke good French or Italian; they would be amazed and fascinated if you spoke Russian even passably well.

    In other words, it doesn’t have anything to do with Spanish per se. You are benefiting from the astonishment that Americans often feel at encountering one of their number who can speak any language other than English beyond a basic level.

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    @SteveO

    "I think they would be even more impressed if you spoke good French or Italian; they would be amazed and fascinated if you spoke Russian even passably well."

    There also American women and Canadian women who find the male British accent to be extremely sexy. But the sophisticated white collar British accent, not the blue collar Cockney accent that you hear among bloody British thug hooligans who violently riot during football games.

    Cockney is like Great Britain's version of Ebonics.

    They think Jude Law's British accent is sexy, but Ricky Hatton's British accent does not turn on North American women at all. Ricky Hatton comes from White trash Cockney culture. He is the boxer who got knocked out by Manny Pacquiao.

    , @Marat
    @SteveO

    You bring up an interesting point. Our high school did not even teach Spanish. Kids had to take at least one year of either Greek or Latin. The subsequent years could be Gr, Lat, Russian, German, French, or Italian. Anyone going into science was strongly urged to take German. Russian was probably a holdover from the Cold War. French is always a big draw (esp for the girls). Interesting how Italian was taught rather than Spanish.

    Don't La Raza types realize they shouldn't be using a colonial language like Spanish but rather the mother tongue of the indigenous peoples? Even mas translators and interpretors are needed!

  36. @Lot
    @Jefferson


    Since when did most Mestizos in the U.S aspire to become White?
     
    Most, but far from all. Many have adopted hard-core La Raza ideology, or have assimilated into the underclass.

    But far more are fans of white culture, would live in a white neighborhood if they could afford it, and strongly prefer their children go to school and marry white.

    Replies: @Jefferson

    “But far more are fans of white culture, would live in a white neighborhood if they could afford it, and strongly prefer their children go to school and marry white.”

    Mexicans in the U.S as a group are certainly not culturally assimilating into Whiteness with their high rates of joining street gangs, teenage motherhood, and high school drop outs. American born Mexicans are even more likely than Mexican Immigrants to join street gangs. Mexicans are culturally assimilating into underclass urban inner city African American culture.

    Also since when did wanting to live in a White neighborhood = wanting to assimilate into Whiteness. Most African Americans would also want to live in a White neighborhood if they could afford it.

    Mexicans in the U.S know their neighborhoods suck, so they see White Gringo neighborhoods as greener pastures. It is strictly about wanting to have a higher standard of living and nothing to do with wanting to become White. Carlos Mencia for example lives in affluent White neighborhood, but he still does not see himself as White and nor he want to be White.

    By your logic, all 3rd world Nonwhite Immigrants come to 1st World White countries because they want to become White.

  37. @prosa123
    Cheaper, more utilitarian consumer products often have bilingual labels in Spanish, while with more expensive things French is the second language of choice.

    Peter

    Replies: @SteveO

    Cheaper, more utilitarian consumer products often have bilingual labels in Spanish, while with more expensive things French is the second language of choice.

    Or, often, all three. Isn’t the French translation related to the North American market rather than pretensions to being upscale? If the product is to be sold in Canada, it needs French labeling.

    Then there’s IKEA, where playing “identify the squiggly writing” (hmm … Armenian or Khmer? Let’s go to Wikipedia!) in the warranty statement makes for a good break from attempting to decipher the directions, which are apparently written in Martian pictographs.

  38. @Lot
    @Mr. Blank


    But where are all the loud, red-meat, right-wing Mexican-American activists and intellectuals?
     
    Maybe you should say: But where are all the [...] Mexican-American activists and intellectuals?

    Intellectual types stay in Mexico. The country has a touching commitment to public education, so even the poorest areas, the Indio south excepted, potential intellectuals are kept in school and sent to college for free.

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Steve Sailer

    “Maybe you should say: But where are all the […] Mexican-American activists and intellectuals?”

    There are plenty of Mexican American political activists in the U.S, but they all politically lean to the Left. Julian Castro, Jorge Ramos, Janet Murguia, Eric Garcetti, Eva Longoria, Bill Richardson, Antonio Villaraigosa, John Quinones, etc.

    There are the Mexican American elites in the U.S and they all hate guys like Donald Trump and Dennis Michael Lynch.

  39. “Look, Mama, No español!”

    Finding unas palabras españolas on Latino Public Broadcasting’s website is like scanning Where’s Waldo?

    http://lpbp.org/

    And check out their gallery of Conquistador-Americans:

    http://lpbp.org/awarded-projects/?key=2013

    Who’s the real target audience? Mostly probably white Anglos with enough money to sink in other people’s sanctimonious film projects.

  40. @SteveO
    @Lot


    as are white girls who see me speaking Spanish to the maid and at restaurants.
     
    I think they would be even more impressed if you spoke good French or Italian; they would be amazed and fascinated if you spoke Russian even passably well.

    In other words, it doesn't have anything to do with Spanish per se. You are benefiting from the astonishment that Americans often feel at encountering one of their number who can speak any language other than English beyond a basic level.

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Marat

    “I think they would be even more impressed if you spoke good French or Italian; they would be amazed and fascinated if you spoke Russian even passably well.”

    There also American women and Canadian women who find the male British accent to be extremely sexy. But the sophisticated white collar British accent, not the blue collar Cockney accent that you hear among bloody British thug hooligans who violently riot during football games.

    Cockney is like Great Britain’s version of Ebonics.

    They think Jude Law’s British accent is sexy, but Ricky Hatton’s British accent does not turn on North American women at all. Ricky Hatton comes from White trash Cockney culture. He is the boxer who got knocked out by Manny Pacquiao.

  41. @Anonymous
    Jeb needs to start speaking Nahuatl. Beneath Jeb's soft, Spanish speaking exterior is the hardest of men, who knows the screams of 20,000 as their blood flows knee-high for Huitzilopochtli.

    Replies: @IBC

    Yes, his talking points would actually make more sense to an English-speaking audience then. Actually, he’s lucky that he wasn’t around 500 years ago when that sort of stuff was actually happening. His large frame and full girth would have made for a comfortable skin-suit for the Aztec sacrificial priests to wear à la Silence of the Lambs:

    http://mobile.nytimes.com/images/100000002552271/2013/11/15/arts/design/the-salon-art-design-a-wide-range-at-park-avenue-armory.html?_r=0

    And you can bet that Hillary would have traded her power-suit for one of those if she’d been alive back then.

  42. Steve – I had a really good comment earlier today that didn’t get posted. It was gold bar worthy. I’ve forgotten it though. Could you check around?

  43. I was almost going to suggest you stop giving the non-Trump candidates such good advice. Instead, give them concern-troll style bad advice, a la MSM “If you really want to win, it is imperative to increase the Hispanic vote! Yada yada”

    However, your reverse triple bankshot plan of giving Jeb! legit advice seems to be working – he’s doubling down on what he’s doing – so well done Steve. Carry on.

    • Agree: Marat
  44. Conan O’Brien has a gag where he plays some campy Telemundo! soap opera much like his Walker Texas Ranger lever where he plays clips from that show. Same thing. Poking fun at the uncool. Very NYC.

  45. @Anthrobeast
    I think Steve is hitting on something important here - Spanish really isn't as cool as it used to be.

    Back when Jeb!'s brother was selling himself as fluent in Spanish 15 years ago, it arguably was cool.

    But I think a combination of the The War On Terror and the rise of China kind of put a kibosh on that. It looked cosmopolitan to brush up on your Spanish fifteen years ago, now it looks parochial.

    Mandarin or Arabic, that's where the smart kids are heading.

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Daniel H

    >>Mandarin or Arabic, that’s where the smart kids are heading.

    Why would any smart man or woman waste time learning Arabic? The Arab world has never produced anything of value. Not in culture, science, commerce or ethics. Arab history has been a sinkhole of futility. Arabic is truly for losers.

    • Disagree: ScarletNumber
    • Replies: @Das
    @Daniel H

    "The Arab world has never produced anything of value. Not in culture, science, commerce or ethics. Arab history has been a sinkhole of futility. Arabic is truly for losers."

    The Arab world has oil and terrorism.

    Knowing Arabic opens the door to a lot of high paying national security jobs and jobs in the finance and oil sectors in the gulf states.

    Replies: @Romanian

  46. @Steve Sailer
    @countenance

    In 1988, shy, retiring, introverted Columba Bush gave a short speech on national TV from the floor of the Republican National Convention. Of course, she gave it in Spanish, so she did fine.

    Replies: @Marat

    Well, it might be good (for the country) that Jeb doggedly go down this path. Afterall, all of the Spanish-speaking enthusiasts will vote for him (to the extent of the Hispanic voter turnout rate). Still stickin’ to that Tried and True GOP HispanderVote Tactic!

    It’s wonderful for Trump because his supporters will be more motivated to vote as they hear Spanish everytime they see Bush and make that grating association. Trump’s job is to get his supporters annoyed enough to make it their business to get to the polls. That Yebbe is too lazy to tack and make any midcourse corrections is a plus for The Donald. Yebbe’s being a good helper! Jeb gets big majority of Hispanic votes and Trump gets the election!

    • Replies: @iSteveFan
    @Marat


    It’s wonderful for Trump because his supporters will be more motivated to vote as they hear Spanish everytime they see Bush and make that grating association. Trump’s job is to get his supporters annoyed enough to make it their business to get to the polls.
     
    Yes the GOP elite, including Bush, are so tone deaf to their base that they can't take a hint. The toxic reaction they generated with the attempted amnesties under W don't seem to register with them. Every time he speaks in Spanish, he is alienating the base. To those who feel that the USA is transforming in front of their eyes and that they are losing their nation, the last thing they want is a standard bearer who has assimilated to the newcomers.

    But Jeb and his handlers probably think it makes him look so cosmopolitan to be able to speak Spanish. The trouble is that to those who like cosmopolitans, vote democrat not republican.
  47. @Daniel H
    @Anthrobeast

    >>Mandarin or Arabic, that’s where the smart kids are heading.

    Why would any smart man or woman waste time learning Arabic? The Arab world has never produced anything of value. Not in culture, science, commerce or ethics. Arab history has been a sinkhole of futility. Arabic is truly for losers.

    Replies: @Das

    “The Arab world has never produced anything of value. Not in culture, science, commerce or ethics. Arab history has been a sinkhole of futility. Arabic is truly for losers.”

    The Arab world has oil and terrorism.

    Knowing Arabic opens the door to a lot of high paying national security jobs and jobs in the finance and oil sectors in the gulf states.

    • Replies: @Romanian
    @Das

    They have oil, but they buy everything else! And everyone loves it when you speak their language.

  48. @SteveO
    @Lot


    as are white girls who see me speaking Spanish to the maid and at restaurants.
     
    I think they would be even more impressed if you spoke good French or Italian; they would be amazed and fascinated if you spoke Russian even passably well.

    In other words, it doesn't have anything to do with Spanish per se. You are benefiting from the astonishment that Americans often feel at encountering one of their number who can speak any language other than English beyond a basic level.

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Marat

    You bring up an interesting point. Our high school did not even teach Spanish. Kids had to take at least one year of either Greek or Latin. The subsequent years could be Gr, Lat, Russian, German, French, or Italian. Anyone going into science was strongly urged to take German. Russian was probably a holdover from the Cold War. French is always a big draw (esp for the girls). Interesting how Italian was taught rather than Spanish.

    Don’t La Raza types realize they shouldn’t be using a colonial language like Spanish but rather the mother tongue of the indigenous peoples? Even mas translators and interpretors are needed!

  49. Well, it’s kinda cool in Romania, with several of their pop singers doing tracks partly or wholly in Spanish in recent years. So there’s that.

    Also, “Do Mexicans think Spanish is less cool than Cubans” is a good question for Gustavo Arellano.

    • Replies: @Romanian
    @Cattle Guard

    They're aiming for the all important summer hit chart for beach parties. Gibberish Spanish, English, Italian etc set to a beat really kills it with the boozy beach-goer demographic. I might have been on-site to witness this a few times, to dispassionately observe the bacchanalia for posterity you understand.

  50. iSteveFan says:
    @Jefferson
    @Anthrobeast

    "But I think a combination of the The War On Terror and the rise of China kind of put a kibosh on that. It looked cosmopolitan to brush up on your Spanish fifteen years ago, now it looks parochial.

    Mandarin or Arabic, that’s where the smart kids are heading."

    Jeff Daniels tells Joseph Gordon Levitt's character in Looper that he should learn to speak Chinese because it is the language of the future. No mention of Spanish being the language of the future. Which is not surprising because neither Mexico nor any other Spanish speaking country will ever surpass China's economy.

    Replies: @iSteveFan

    Jeff Daniels tells Joseph Gordon Levitt’s character in Looper that he should learn to speak Chinese because it is the language of the future.

    I have no doubt China will have great influence due to its large economy and population. But will their language become widespread outside of China? It seems that English has too large a head start with non-native speakers for anything else to overtake it. English also seems easier to learn, especially the alphabet, and its so prolific in movies and the internet, I don’t think it will be displaced any time soon.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    @iSteveFan

    https://youtu.be/oGo96xzNSEs?t=1m0s

    , @jtgw
    @iSteveFan

    Exactly. Spanish is much more international than Chinese. It seems rare even in Asia for non-Chinese speakers to learn Chinese; English is definitely the lingua franca in that part of the world.

    , @Romanian
    @iSteveFan

    Having been to China quite a number of times and bearing no ill will to the Chinese, whom I tremendously admire and somewhat resent for their qualities, I have come to the conclusion that the horrid writing system saps them and other such peoples of a few IQ points, not enough to matter in the really intelligent crowd, but enough to make a difference in the middle and lower IQ demographic. Language is like an operating system - the more resources you have to devote to running it properly, the less you'll have left over for actual applications. And I remember thinking how Chinese-Americans, in the same largely academic sphere but with English as the first language, seemed so much more sophisticated in argumentation and quickness, way beyond what a disparity in the facility with the English language would explain. So, I think languages with alphabets or any other similarly simplified system (like the Korean Hangul alphabet based around syllable groupings) will trump languages like Chinese, Ancient Egyptian etc, especially with regards to rapidity of expansion due to scientific advances. Of, course, English has a problem in terms of (admittedly pleasant) historical excess baggage, such as how colonel is pronounced kernel because the French word provided the writing and the Italian version coronel provided the sound through the miracle of whothehellknows. Other languages are read exactly the same as how they are written, with very little in the way of rules and exceptions (my own native tongue, for instance). But nobody can beat English for sheer dictionary size and conceptual depth (maybe German comes close).

    Replies: @SPMoore8, @iSteveFan

  51. iSteveFan says:
    @Marat
    @Steve Sailer

    Well, it might be good (for the country) that Jeb doggedly go down this path. Afterall, all of the Spanish-speaking enthusiasts will vote for him (to the extent of the Hispanic voter turnout rate). Still stickin' to that Tried and True GOP HispanderVote Tactic!

    It's wonderful for Trump because his supporters will be more motivated to vote as they hear Spanish everytime they see Bush and make that grating association. Trump's job is to get his supporters annoyed enough to make it their business to get to the polls. That Yebbe is too lazy to tack and make any midcourse corrections is a plus for The Donald. Yebbe's being a good helper! Jeb gets big majority of Hispanic votes and Trump gets the election!

    Replies: @iSteveFan

    It’s wonderful for Trump because his supporters will be more motivated to vote as they hear Spanish everytime they see Bush and make that grating association. Trump’s job is to get his supporters annoyed enough to make it their business to get to the polls.

    Yes the GOP elite, including Bush, are so tone deaf to their base that they can’t take a hint. The toxic reaction they generated with the attempted amnesties under W don’t seem to register with them. Every time he speaks in Spanish, he is alienating the base. To those who feel that the USA is transforming in front of their eyes and that they are losing their nation, the last thing they want is a standard bearer who has assimilated to the newcomers.

    But Jeb and his handlers probably think it makes him look so cosmopolitan to be able to speak Spanish. The trouble is that to those who like cosmopolitans, vote democrat not republican.

  52. @Anonymous
    With the inevitable secondary market on South-Am. region DVDs & then playing on Univision/Telemundo/Fox Mas* [*I am not sure of this network's name] you'd think it wouldn't cost them much more to include the Spanish dubbing at the time of release (if anything, it might be more efficient from an accounting & artistic perspective). What does the exhibitor research show? Do non-English-hearing patrons spend less on sodas, Milk Duds, etc.? Anecdotally I recall a childhood friend whose first-generation Latina mom always smuggled in her own supply in an extra-large handbag whenever our trio would take in Hollywood's finest at the local cinema. This was back when they didn't have to pay a security guard to monitor the audience with night vision for piracy.

    Delivery of dubbing other than by headphone jack obviously presents a zero-sum audience problem, so is it actually a matter of old Mexican folks not having their own audiophile headsets to bring with? Don't forget that since theatrical presentations went to the all-digital format (a self-destructing hard-drive device is used, in fact) it's entirely wrung the profit out of being a movie theater owner. I suspect the studio can even revoke your movie's decryption key if you don't meet a daily ticket quota. Also, isn't this projecting some dimly remembered past (probably fictional) of Italian/Jewish non-English-speaking immigrants in the Lower East Side eagerly watching Al Jolson (or whatever), onto more insular Latinos who may not care? They have plenty of Spanish movies already

    Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    Do non-English-hearing patrons spend less on sodas, Milk Duds, etc.?

    It doesn’t appear so judging by their obesity rates. But maybe they’re smuggling Bimbo products from the barrio’s panaderia into the theater in their huge pockets. Why else would you wear a coat in LA? (Besides concealed carry.)

  53. @iSteveFan
    @Jefferson


    Jeff Daniels tells Joseph Gordon Levitt’s character in Looper that he should learn to speak Chinese because it is the language of the future.
     
    I have no doubt China will have great influence due to its large economy and population. But will their language become widespread outside of China? It seems that English has too large a head start with non-native speakers for anything else to overtake it. English also seems easier to learn, especially the alphabet, and its so prolific in movies and the internet, I don't think it will be displaced any time soon.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @jtgw, @Romanian

  54. @Lot
    @Mr. Blank


    But where are all the loud, red-meat, right-wing Mexican-American activists and intellectuals?
     
    Maybe you should say: But where are all the [...] Mexican-American activists and intellectuals?

    Intellectual types stay in Mexico. The country has a touching commitment to public education, so even the poorest areas, the Indio south excepted, potential intellectuals are kept in school and sent to college for free.

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Steve Sailer

    The Mexican government traditionally bought off its intellectuals. Instead of sending them to the gulag, it made them highly paid college professors (in the 1970s, college professors in Mexico were paid the same amount as college professors in America) or ambassadors.

    Like I’ve been saying, the Mexican government isn’t stupid.

    • Replies: @Veracitor
    @Steve Sailer

    Buying off Mexico's intellectuals is cheap because they are so few. That strategy doesn't work in all cultures, though the French, for example, have made a go of it, and the USA has made many of its pseudo-intellectuals into college professors.

  55. You have failed, oh iSteve, to draw our attention to all the young Hispanics who study Ebonics.

  56. @Clifford Brown
    This is just a simply brilliant observation. Just shows how clueless the Republican Establishment is.

    The one time I was in Miami Beach, I ended up being dragged to a nightclub that was 100% Columbian. I was the only non-Columbian in the joint and I was concerned as to what to expect. I was without a doubt in the lowest income bracket in the nightclub. The crowd consisted of the children of Columbian oligarchs who lived in Miami. They were some of the nicest and politest people I have ever met in a nightclub setting. The women were gorgeous and the men were mostly coddled rich kids. I was by far the toughest guy in the place and I can rarely say that unless I am visiting a retirement home.

    Contrast that with three years ago when I went to a Dodgers game. I stopped in a East LA bar near Dodger Stadium on a weekday afternoon. I was probably one of four "Anglos" (as they say in California, although I don't identify as such) in the entire bar. I have no hesitation in saying that I was the least tough guy in the bar. I also had the least tattoos. My guess is that my Spanish was better than the majority of the Latinos in the bar, none of whom were immigrants. Things were definitely not looking up, until "Paradise City" came on the juke box. Those East LA Mexican biker dudes love them some G'n'R! These are people I can deal with.

    Ferrari driving, trust fund Columbians in Miami Beach, not so much.

    Replies: @AP

    Interesting observations. I had a similar experience to your Miami one, at an upscale nightclub in Tijuana where the local elites hung out (far from where American sailors go). Very nice, well-dressed, civilized, gracious people. Other than one rich-looking middle-aged blonde American guy we appeared to be the only non-Mexicans there; the locals of course looked Spanish more than Indian. This was before the recent violent times.

    Now, can you imagine yourself in an all-Muslim environment? Or in Compton in the 90s? Not that mass flooding the USA with Latinos (or anybody else) is a good thing, but it puts this problem in perspective.

  57. @Anonymous
    @Pat Casey

    That's Jimmy Kimmel's show, which has the short Mexican sidekick who speaks broken English and is the butt of jokes. The Chelsea Handler show, which I don't think is on any longer, was also a recent late night show that had a short Mexican sidekick who spoke broken English and was the butt of jokes. You do raise an interesting point about how these shows seem to get away with it.

    Replies: @Bill B., @Brutusale

    Also Fawlty Towers.

    After one minute.

  58. In the upcoming debate Trump ought reprimand Jeb for campaigning in Spanish; it would probably drive down Jeb’s numbers to 2 or 3%.

    • Replies: @Hunsdon
    @Jonathan Silber

    Ask and ye shall receive.

    http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/09/02/exclusive-donald-trump-fires-back-at-jeb-bush-he-should-lead-by-speaking-english-while-in-the-united-states/

  59. This seems vaguely relevant, and I think Steve posted once on this long ago: while many Hispanic US citizens may watch movies in English and think in English and speak it fluently, they don’t read and write in English well enough so they are classified as English Language Learners at kindergarten. Many of them stay as ELL all through school. Why? The classification is a proxy for cognitive ability at the low end.

    And so proposal #5: End ELL classification

  60. @Steve Sailer
    @Lot

    The Mexican government traditionally bought off its intellectuals. Instead of sending them to the gulag, it made them highly paid college professors (in the 1970s, college professors in Mexico were paid the same amount as college professors in America) or ambassadors.

    Like I've been saying, the Mexican government isn't stupid.

    Replies: @Veracitor

    Buying off Mexico’s intellectuals is cheap because they are so few. That strategy doesn’t work in all cultures, though the French, for example, have made a go of it, and the USA has made many of its pseudo-intellectuals into college professors.

  61. @Das
    @Daniel H

    "The Arab world has never produced anything of value. Not in culture, science, commerce or ethics. Arab history has been a sinkhole of futility. Arabic is truly for losers."

    The Arab world has oil and terrorism.

    Knowing Arabic opens the door to a lot of high paying national security jobs and jobs in the finance and oil sectors in the gulf states.

    Replies: @Romanian

    They have oil, but they buy everything else! And everyone loves it when you speak their language.

  62. Latinos think speaking Spanish is uncool? Interesting. It almost sounds like all the anti-immigrant alarmists who fret about English becoming a minority language in the US are wrong.

  63. @iSteveFan
    @Jefferson


    Jeff Daniels tells Joseph Gordon Levitt’s character in Looper that he should learn to speak Chinese because it is the language of the future.
     
    I have no doubt China will have great influence due to its large economy and population. But will their language become widespread outside of China? It seems that English has too large a head start with non-native speakers for anything else to overtake it. English also seems easier to learn, especially the alphabet, and its so prolific in movies and the internet, I don't think it will be displaced any time soon.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @jtgw, @Romanian

    Exactly. Spanish is much more international than Chinese. It seems rare even in Asia for non-Chinese speakers to learn Chinese; English is definitely the lingua franca in that part of the world.

  64. @Cattle Guard
    Well, it's kinda cool in Romania, with several of their pop singers doing tracks partly or wholly in Spanish in recent years. So there's that.

    Also, "Do Mexicans think Spanish is less cool than Cubans" is a good question for Gustavo Arellano.

    Replies: @Romanian

    They’re aiming for the all important summer hit chart for beach parties. Gibberish Spanish, English, Italian etc set to a beat really kills it with the boozy beach-goer demographic. I might have been on-site to witness this a few times, to dispassionately observe the bacchanalia for posterity you understand.

  65. @iSteveFan
    @Jefferson


    Jeff Daniels tells Joseph Gordon Levitt’s character in Looper that he should learn to speak Chinese because it is the language of the future.
     
    I have no doubt China will have great influence due to its large economy and population. But will their language become widespread outside of China? It seems that English has too large a head start with non-native speakers for anything else to overtake it. English also seems easier to learn, especially the alphabet, and its so prolific in movies and the internet, I don't think it will be displaced any time soon.

    Replies: @Steve Sailer, @jtgw, @Romanian

    Having been to China quite a number of times and bearing no ill will to the Chinese, whom I tremendously admire and somewhat resent for their qualities, I have come to the conclusion that the horrid writing system saps them and other such peoples of a few IQ points, not enough to matter in the really intelligent crowd, but enough to make a difference in the middle and lower IQ demographic. Language is like an operating system – the more resources you have to devote to running it properly, the less you’ll have left over for actual applications. And I remember thinking how Chinese-Americans, in the same largely academic sphere but with English as the first language, seemed so much more sophisticated in argumentation and quickness, way beyond what a disparity in the facility with the English language would explain. So, I think languages with alphabets or any other similarly simplified system (like the Korean Hangul alphabet based around syllable groupings) will trump languages like Chinese, Ancient Egyptian etc, especially with regards to rapidity of expansion due to scientific advances. Of, course, English has a problem in terms of (admittedly pleasant) historical excess baggage, such as how colonel is pronounced kernel because the French word provided the writing and the Italian version coronel provided the sound through the miracle of whothehellknows. Other languages are read exactly the same as how they are written, with very little in the way of rules and exceptions (my own native tongue, for instance). But nobody can beat English for sheer dictionary size and conceptual depth (maybe German comes close).

    • Replies: @SPMoore8
    @Romanian

    I have come to the conclusion that the horrid writing system saps them I agree. Having to remember the shades of meaning for 5 K to 10 K highly symbolic pictures is a major problem. Which is why I think a language like English is better situated as a world language, even though English also has some problems, chiefly in terms of symbols that are not sounded consistently (e.g., two different "th" sounds, "gh" pronounced as "f" in "enough" but silent in "though", etc.)

    , @iSteveFan
    @Romanian

    You make a good argument. Here is an article by a Japanese professor written in English explaining to the Japanese why they too need to learn English. He makes some good points on why English is the common language.

  66. Jeb speaks Mexican Spanish near fluently. I find his educated central Mexican highlands accent relaxing to listen to.

    But Marco Rubio is a different creature entirely. Rubio’s upper crusty Cuban accent sounds like a mix of Pee Wee Herman and Thurston Howell III to Mexican Spanish speakers like me and ¡Jeb! and ten million Mexican-American voters. It makes me just want to punch him.

    On the other hand, I bet those Florida hispanics prefer to listen to Rubio.

    Rubio’s Spanish is never going to help him with hispanics outside Florida. Even the Puerto Ricans are going to find him twee and grating. The rest of us Spanish speakers would rather hear him in English than Cuban.

    Spanish speakers with limited English in the USA would rather struggle in English with me than switch to Spanish. Those that don’t speak English at all avoid talking to me — probably because of my blue eyes — but then they are obviously embarrassed when I continue in Spanish. It’s the opposite of the reaction in Mexico where locals often show obvious relief when I start speaking and they find out they won’t have to essay their limited English.

    Of course, when I bring a pretty latina with me to the market the reluctant Spanish-speaking ladies are suddenly happy to flirt with me in Spanish in front of her.

    So I checked the listings at Cinemex in Mexico City. Misión Imposible 5 (Rogue Nation) is playing in a few theatres, half in Spanish and half with subtitles. English competency is rare in the city so people are really reading those subtitles. I think moviegoers just want to hear Tom Cruise in his own voice and are willing to read in exchange.

  67. @Romanian
    @iSteveFan

    Having been to China quite a number of times and bearing no ill will to the Chinese, whom I tremendously admire and somewhat resent for their qualities, I have come to the conclusion that the horrid writing system saps them and other such peoples of a few IQ points, not enough to matter in the really intelligent crowd, but enough to make a difference in the middle and lower IQ demographic. Language is like an operating system - the more resources you have to devote to running it properly, the less you'll have left over for actual applications. And I remember thinking how Chinese-Americans, in the same largely academic sphere but with English as the first language, seemed so much more sophisticated in argumentation and quickness, way beyond what a disparity in the facility with the English language would explain. So, I think languages with alphabets or any other similarly simplified system (like the Korean Hangul alphabet based around syllable groupings) will trump languages like Chinese, Ancient Egyptian etc, especially with regards to rapidity of expansion due to scientific advances. Of, course, English has a problem in terms of (admittedly pleasant) historical excess baggage, such as how colonel is pronounced kernel because the French word provided the writing and the Italian version coronel provided the sound through the miracle of whothehellknows. Other languages are read exactly the same as how they are written, with very little in the way of rules and exceptions (my own native tongue, for instance). But nobody can beat English for sheer dictionary size and conceptual depth (maybe German comes close).

    Replies: @SPMoore8, @iSteveFan

    I have come to the conclusion that the horrid writing system saps them I agree. Having to remember the shades of meaning for 5 K to 10 K highly symbolic pictures is a major problem. Which is why I think a language like English is better situated as a world language, even though English also has some problems, chiefly in terms of symbols that are not sounded consistently (e.g., two different “th” sounds, “gh” pronounced as “f” in “enough” but silent in “though”, etc.)

  68. “undermine the carried interest deduction for hedge funds. ”

    At the risk of being a nit picking a-hole, it’s not a “deduction” that is at issue. It’s the treatment of carried interest income as capital gains when, by any logical analysis, it should be viewed as payment for services and therefore ordinary income.

  69. @Jonathan Silber
    In the upcoming debate Trump ought reprimand Jeb for campaigning in Spanish; it would probably drive down Jeb's numbers to 2 or 3%.

    Replies: @Hunsdon

  70. @Romanian
    @iSteveFan

    Having been to China quite a number of times and bearing no ill will to the Chinese, whom I tremendously admire and somewhat resent for their qualities, I have come to the conclusion that the horrid writing system saps them and other such peoples of a few IQ points, not enough to matter in the really intelligent crowd, but enough to make a difference in the middle and lower IQ demographic. Language is like an operating system - the more resources you have to devote to running it properly, the less you'll have left over for actual applications. And I remember thinking how Chinese-Americans, in the same largely academic sphere but with English as the first language, seemed so much more sophisticated in argumentation and quickness, way beyond what a disparity in the facility with the English language would explain. So, I think languages with alphabets or any other similarly simplified system (like the Korean Hangul alphabet based around syllable groupings) will trump languages like Chinese, Ancient Egyptian etc, especially with regards to rapidity of expansion due to scientific advances. Of, course, English has a problem in terms of (admittedly pleasant) historical excess baggage, such as how colonel is pronounced kernel because the French word provided the writing and the Italian version coronel provided the sound through the miracle of whothehellknows. Other languages are read exactly the same as how they are written, with very little in the way of rules and exceptions (my own native tongue, for instance). But nobody can beat English for sheer dictionary size and conceptual depth (maybe German comes close).

    Replies: @SPMoore8, @iSteveFan

    You make a good argument. Here is an article by a Japanese professor written in English explaining to the Japanese why they too need to learn English. He makes some good points on why English is the common language.

  71. In California, and probably the rest of the country as well, Spanish is associated with low status jobs like gardeners and dishwashers. In Miami there is no such stigma because the upper classes speak Spanish. I’ve known several Cubans or other Latinos who lived in California come here to Miami and complain about everyone speaking Spanish and not even trying to learn English.

  72. @Mr. Blank
    Yeah, Jeb seems to be operating on the theory that the United States is just Florida writ large, so the approach he used successfully in Florida will translate seamlessly to the national stage.

    In Florida's political climate, seeing politicians switch effortlessly between Spanish and English is seen as no biggie, even for redneck voters, because everybody just writes it off as "oh, they're pandering to the Cuban vote again." Since Cubans aren't (yet) seen as a wholly owned and operated subsidiary of the Democratic party, Republicans here don't mind it that much. Jeb doesn't seem to get that this sort of thing plays very differently in Iowa.

    On the other hand, it does suggest that ethnic grievance groups who want real political power would be advised to spread themselves a little more widely across the political spectrum. Cubans, like Jews, have been very successful in getting their policy preferences set in stone precisely because they've been so good at avoiding being tied exclusively to one party — thus a Republican who panders to Cuban donors isn't seen as "selling out" his redneck constituents.

    The non-Cuban "Hispanic vote," though, is still seen as monolithically Democratic and leftist, despite the best efforts of lobbyists — therefore, a GOP candidate who openly panders to Hispanics gets tagged as a Democrat in sheep's clothing.

    Or to put it in a way that iSteve readers might appreciate: While everybody knows most Jews are Democrats, everyone also knows there are some very loud, red-meat right-wing Jewish Republicans, so most white, Christian Republican voters aren't terribly threatened by a Republican who talks up Jewish issues. There's a similar dynamic at work in Florida with politicians pandering to Cubans. But where are all the loud, red-meat, right-wing Mexican-American activists and intellectuals? Where's the Mexican-American version of Rush Limbaugh that Hispanics can point to and say, "see? Letting us have our way doesn't have to be so bad."

    If La Raza or Black Lives Matter want to take it to the next level, maybe they need to develop their own neocon wings... :)

    Replies: @Jefferson, @Ivy, @Lot, @Intelligent Dasein

    Is it just possible that Malcolm X was moving in that direction? If he’d had another ten years to develop, who knows.

  73. @Matra
    So three weeks from now when native Spanish speaker Pope Francis arrives in the US to lecture you on immigration his message will be cooler, and thus resonate more, if he does it in English?

    Replies: @Intelligent Dasein

    I really don’t think anybody was making that argument.

  74. @Anonymous
    @Pat Casey

    That's Jimmy Kimmel's show, which has the short Mexican sidekick who speaks broken English and is the butt of jokes. The Chelsea Handler show, which I don't think is on any longer, was also a recent late night show that had a short Mexican sidekick who spoke broken English and was the butt of jokes. You do raise an interesting point about how these shows seem to get away with it.

    Replies: @Bill B., @Brutusale

    The Simpson’s slapstick Bumblebee Man made it safe.

  75. A Puerto Rican friend swore that the best way to watch Charles Bronson movies was on Telemundo in Spanish. He said Death Wish was even more badass in Espanol.

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