The New Class is a term that was invented by Yugoslav writerrn(and former apparatchik) Milovan Djilas. It described thernbureaucrahc class which ruled and prospered under communismrnby taking state and “public” property for its own privaternuse. This concept—also known later as the nomenklatura—rnwas capable of more general application, and Irving Kristol,rnSeymour Martin Lipset, and other (generally neoconservative)rnsocial critics in the 1970’s applied it to the United States and tornthe conditions of late capitalism to describe the non-technicalrn”intelligentsia” which controls the bureaucracy, the courts, federalrnagencies, the media, and cultural inshtutions. This class isrnunited not only by common interests but also—and more importantlyrn—by a common concept of those interests. In everydayrnlife, these are the imperatives of liberal politics.rnOne of the most prominent analysts of this class and its politics,rnto whom I must pay tribute, is Samuel Francis. In Chroniclesrnand in his most recent book. Revolution from the Middle,rnDr. Francis describes his theories as being based on those ofrnDonald Warren, but one can also detect the strong influence ofrnJames Burnham, in particular his once-famous book, The ManagerialrnRevolution. The managerial class which Burnhamrnidentified has changed its politics in numerous ways since thernearly 40’s, when he first sketched out his thesis, but it has steadilyrnincreased its power and influence. Burnham correctly analyzedrnthis trend at the time, but he was mistaken about its shorttermrndirection, and he exaggerated the degree to which it hadrnalready succeeded in conquering society. Overall, however,rnthe Burnhamite analysis, especially in the hands of Dr. Francis,rnhas proved extremely prescient and fruitful.rnRecentiy, this New Class has seen that the way to extend itsrnpower is to divide Americans into different tribes so that it canrnthen step forward as the mediator of their disputes, keeping thernpeace by tiansferring resources from one tribe to another as necessityrndictates. This policy of divide-and-rule is perhaps mostrnexplicit and most entrenched in the structures of affirmative action.rnBut it achieved a reductio ad absurdum in the reactions ofrnthe Democrats when the Democratic National Committee wasrncaught soliciting funds illegally from Asian donors and launderingrnthem through Asian-Americans. The Democrats soughtrnto avoid responsibility for their own crimes by accusing theirrncritics of hostility to Asians. To an extent, they succeeded—butrnat the heavy cost of adding to the ethnic tensions of Americanrnsociety.rnAmerica’s distinctive nationhood, therefore, is being subvertedrnby three factors in combination: a widely accepted theory ofrnAmerican nationality, which leaves it vulnerable to multiculturalistrnattacks; continuing high levels of immigration, whichrninter alia make multiculturalism plausible to ordinary people;rnand the existence of a class with a political interest in dividingrnAmerica along ethnic and other lines. If these are the problems,rnthen the answer seems reasonably clear: we must restorerna tiaditional understanding of the American people as a distinctrnnation—with its own history, language, culture, and institutionsrn—as the basis for a new nationalist politics.rnMy Nationalism—^ght and WrongrnAny attempt to forge a new nationalist politics will naturally revealrnour differences. After all, nationalist postures have beenrnstruck at various times by people as strikingly different as BillrnClinton, Ross Perot, Edward Luttwak, Dick Cephardt, andrnNorman Podhoretz. But none of these has devised a package ofrnnationalist policies that could be convincingly presented to votersrnas the solution to America’s identity crisis. Only PatrickrnBuchanan has done this, with his “America First” agenda. Itrnconsists of three basic appeals: protectionism; the restriction ofrnimmigration (and opposition to multiculturalism and bilingualism);rnand a foreign policy restricting America’s participationrnin international organizations such as NATO and thernUnited Nations in order to preserve American sovereignty.rnThis package of measures has already shown considerable (ifrnminority) appeal in the Buchanan campaigns of 1992 andrn1996. It was originally bolstered by the rise of Ross Perot, whornechoed some of Buchanan’s themes (if somewhat timidly andrnincoherently). It has recently been given fresh energy by the arrivalrnof a new labor union leadership which is more aggressive,rnmore prepared to spend money, and more willing to back protectionistrnpolicies than was the George Meany/Lane Kirklandrnleadership of the AFL-CIO. Above all, Buchananite nationalismrnhas been given a major boost by the defeat of fast-hack legislationrnin the closing months of 1997. So it seems likely thatrnnationalist politics—at least on the right—will go down thernBuchanan route. And because much of what follows will berncritical of Buchananism, I should acknowledge that (in his NationalrnInterest article, “America First—and Second, andrnThird”) Pat Buchanan was the first major figure to see that post-rnCold War politics would be radically different from what wentrnbefore, that nationalism would revive almost everywhere followingrnthe collapse of the last great secular religion, and that itrnwould have to be accommodated by Western governments andrnpolitical parties, especially those on the right.rnThe main problem, unfortunately, is that Buchananism hasrngot its priorities wrong. It has eonsistentiy emphasized its weakestrnpolicy (protectionism) over its strongest (restricting immigration).rnIt has ignored the likely consequences of protectionism,rnpointing instead to its popularity—even though a popularrnpolicy that cannot deliver the goods will soon become unpopularrnand ruin the larger politics of which it is an expression. It isrnbuilding a political coalition which is not only riven by more seriousrndisputes than both the existing parties but which has elementsrnthat are hostile to the revival of American nationhood onrnevery issue outside the narrow and secondary realm of economics.rnAnd its foreign policy of “America First” is a responsernto a temporary sitiiation of American predominance in worldrnaffairs and does not take into account the dangers posed by a futurernof five or six competing superpowers. These are seriousrnflaws. Do they look so disabling in detail?rnTake immigration. Together with the related issues of multiculturalismrnand bilingualism, immigration is potentially thernstrongest card in nationalist politics. Its great advantage as a politicalrnissue is that it is directly and visibly linked to America’srncrisis of nationhood. That link is a matter of common observationrnand common sense, and it does not have to be establishedrnby a long chain of reasoning—except, of course, to intellectuals.rnMoreover, it is an issue where the cure is plainly the oppositernof the cause. Restricting immigration would rapidly beginrnto cure America’s crisis of identity, as it did in the inter-warrnyears, by shrinking linguistic and cultural enclaves and givingrntheir inhabitants a strong practical incentive to assimilate.rnAbove all, restiicting immigration is a policy which imposes nornserious costs on the American people. The recent report of thernNational Academy of Sciences found that the net economicrnbenefit of immigration to native-born Americans was extremelyrnlow—between one to ten billion dollars annually in an almostrnJULY 1998/23rnrnrn