In the last HOT5 I linked a post on intellectual honesty. Today I read several pieces written in response to a new ad by Sharon Angle in Nevada. The usual suspects are accusing her of racism -- there's a big surprise, leftists making racism accusations -- but the responses also provide examples of one of my pet peeves: the blatant intellectual dishonesty of most illegal immigration supporters. Liberal hack Alex Pareene at Salon helpfully offers the most striking example, right in the title: "Sharron Angle's ridiculous new anti-immigrant ad." If you look at the ad you will find that there is nothing about it that is in any way "anti-immigrant." Being opposed to illegal immigration, no matter how stridently it is opposed, has nothing to do with being opposed to all immigration, or to legal immigrants.
It is of course possible to be opposed to all immigration, legal & illegal, and to be against it on racist, nativist or other grounds. But the vast majority of people opposed to illegal immigration are opposed to having people illegally enter the country, not to legal immigration, which is a different matter. Even someone that thinks we should have stricter controls on legal immigration doesn't necessarily qualify as anti-immigrant. There is no question that writers like Alex Pareene understand the distinction between opposing illegal vs all immigration, or that there are various positions that can be taken on immigration in general. Pareene and others like him, are simply intellectually dishonest propagandists, deliberately conflating opposition to illegal immigration not just with immigration as a whole, but even with racial animus to immigrants. It's just another variant of the common left-wing smear tactic of false accusations of racism, which is deployed regularly against political opponents. Like much of what is found at Salon, there's simply no reason to take it seriously as any sort of rational analysis. When you engage in such obvious intellectual dishonesty as Pareene, you immediately identify yourself as a ideological hack whose writings should be taken with a big grain of salt.