To see what is in front of one's nose needs a constant struggle.
--- George Orwell

Monday, July 11, 2016

Effete 'Guardian' Editors Might Be 'Having A Laugh' But Philistines Are Not Amused

Sub-editors at the Guardian may be chuckling over the news that the Philistines were evidently more culturally advanced than the Book of Judges described them. But the international epithet industry is reeling, with shares of biblical disparagements hitting rock-bottom levels in end-of-dig trading. Archeologist Lawrence Stager, who led the excavation efforts, said that "the Philistines have had some very bad press, and this will dispel a lot of myths." Meanwhile a fretful and accusatory Israeli public worries about "blood libel" charges being filed in international courts. "Who Knew?" read the headline in Haaretz.  

Saturday, July 9, 2016

The Last Word On 'Hamilton' (The Musical) Is That Hamilton (The Man) Was Actually A Bit Of A 'Hater' On Immigration

The hip hop musical Hamilton has become a Broadway sensation, redefining what musical theatre in America looks and sounds like. 

With a nearly all black and Latino cast playing the parts of the all-white founding fathers ---"diversity casting” it’s called --- the show has been sold out for months, and now fetches more than $1000 a seat. It’s been hailed as a work of artistic genius and a marvel of pluralism and inclusion--- a touchstone for a new America in which whites will soon no longer be in the majority. CNN said Hamilton embraces the history and diversity of America like no musical before.” President Obama has called the show “a civics lesson our kids can’t get enough of.”

The fact that Hamilton was an orphaned immigrant from the Caribbean—the bastard son of a minor Scottish aristocrat and a British West Indian mother who was married to someone else at the time of his birth---has been much noted in the show’s publicity juggernaut. The show has also been cited a particularly clever rejoinder to the immigrant-bashing of Donald Trump. Giving the commencement address at Penn this year, the musical’s author, Lin-Manuel Miranda, whose parents are native Puerto Ricans, told graduates:

In a year when politicians traffic in anti-immigrant rhetoric, there is also a Broadway musical reminding us that a broke, orphan immigrant from the West Indies built our financial system. A story that reminds us that since the beginning of the great, unfinished symphony that is our American experiment, time and time again, immigrants get the job done.

Miranda told the Atlantic that the show was

a particularly nice reminder at this point in our politics, which comes around every 20 years or so, when immigrant is used as a dirty word by politicians to get cheap political points, that three of the biggest heroes of our revolutionary war for independence were a Scotsman from the West Indies, named Alexander Hamilton; a Frenchman, named Lafayette; and a gay German, named Friedrich von Steuben, who organized our army and taught us how to do drills. Immigrants have been present and necessary since the founding of our country. I think it’s also a nice reminder that any fight we’re having right now, politically, we already had it 200-some odd years ago.

Miranda told the Times Broadway reporter Michael Paulson:

Our cast looks like America looks now, and that’s certainly intentional. It’s a way of pulling you into the story and allowing you to leave whatever cultural baggage you have about the founding fathers at the door.

Calling the show “a story of immigrants, from creators who are the children of immigrants,” Paulson maintained that 

Hamilton has contributed to the national conversation about immigration. A line from the show – “Immigrants/We get the job done” – gets such sustained applause that the pause that follows has been lengthened to allow time for the ovation to end.

Hamilton was center stage at the June 11 Tony Awards, or the “Hamiltonys” as many enthusiastic Broadway critics and writers had begun to refer to it, clinching 11 prizes in the 16 categories for which it received nominations.  The night’s biggest applause line came during Corden’s opening monologue when he noted the contrast between that night’s Tonys the #OscarsSoWhite controversy over the dearth of minority nominations for Academy Awards in 2016. “Think of tonight as the Oscars, but with diversity,” Corden joked. “It is so diverse that Donald Trump has threatened to build a wall around this theater.”

A funny thing happened on the way to all the accolades however. The crush of exuberant reviews, adulatory reporting and flattering commentary that Hamilton received failed to notice that the show’s pro-immigrant theme was very much at odds with the anti-immigrant views held by the real Alexander Hamilton. Although Lin Manuel Miranda told Hamilton biographer Ron Chernow he was committed to historical accuracy, the show completely ignored aspects of Hamilton’s life story and thinking that undermined the progressive message on diversity and equality that the show wanted its mostly liberal New York audiences to take home.   

Whether you're unapologetically pro-immigration, virulently anti-immigration or somewhere in the nuanced in-between, the historical record leaves no doubt that the real Alexander Hamilton would have scoffed at the glorification of immigration, both in the Broadway adaptation of his life and in the publicity surrounding it. Like many of the other founding fathers, George Washington, James Madison, and Thomas Jefferson--- Alexander Hamilton was dubious about the wisdom about granting citizenship to those not native-born, as well as the ability of “foreigners” to assimilate to American norms.  And unlike Thomas Jefferson, who flip-flopped on the issue after becoming president in 1800, Hamilton took his doubts to the grave.  

In fact by today’s standards, you might call the real Alexander Hamilton a bit of a “hater.” While he might not have been a xenophobe or a “nativist” in the sense of the 19th century Know-Nothings, Hamilton was certainly a nationalist and a restrictionist, and expressed his anti immigrant feelings in the same harsh terms, and with the same hostile tone, as Donald Trump. Even if Lin-Manuel Miranda is right that the fight about immigration we are having now being the same one we had 200 years ago --- and I'm not sure he is --- the record clearly shows that Hamilton was on the other side of that fight, not the side that Miranda wants you to think. Hamilton, like Trump had strong ideas on national sovereignty and identity. You could see him very much agreeing with Trump that "People want to see borders. They don't necessarily want people pouring into their country that they don't know who they are and where they come from." (sic, Trumpian garbled grammar.)

It was Alexander Hamilton who was the driving force behind the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798, passed as the fledgling American republic fretted about alien “fifth columnists” and braced for war with France that luckily never came. With rough similarities to the much reviled US Patriot Act of 2002 as well as some of the more strident anti-immigrant proposals put forward by Trump, the Alien and Sedition Acts made it harder for immigrants to become citizens, lengthening the residency requirement from five to fourteen years. The Act also authorized the president to imprison or deport aliens considered "dangerous to the peace and safety of the United States" and restricted speech that criticized government actions and policy, especially criticism from the foreign born. Hamilton believed that an influx of foreigners would undermine the cohesion of the new nation and, more significantly, that the preservation of a distinctly American national character and a distinctly American national spirit were essential to republican self-government.

The safety of a republic depends essentially on the energy of a common national sentiment; on a uniformity of principles and habits; on the exemption of the citizens from foreign bias and prejudice; and on that love of country which will almost invariably be found to be closely connected with birth, education and family.

Hamilton thought immigration was divisive because it would make it difficult to define the broader national interest and to forge a sense of shared national community, especially in times of national crisis. Immigrants were a fifth column, Hamilton believed, ready to seize the chance to undo America’s liberty on behalf of their home nations, France in particular. Hamilton also thought foreigners had anti-democratic predispositions, largely because most were coming from countries governed by absolute monarchs, without English-style constitutional limitations and English traditions of natural law.  

The United States have already felt the evils of incorporating a large number of foreigners into their national mass; by promoting in different classes different predilections in favor of particular foreign nations, and antipathies against others, it has served very much to divide the community and to distract our councils. It has been often likely to compromise the interests of our own country in favor of another. The permanent effect of such a policy will be, that in times of great public danger there will be always a numerous body of men, of whom there may be just grounds of distrust; the suspicion alone will weaken the strength of the nation, but their force may be actually employed in assisting an invader.

Hamilton also thought that the different cultural traits of immigrants might be a bad fit for a young democracy, and that a process for assimilation was imperative. In other words, he believed that culture matters,” as the neoconservative thinkers and sociologists like to say when discussing the challenges of absorbing immigrants from the Third World. Like the Jefferson who wrote Notes on Virginia (unlike the Jefferson who later reversed himself to support massive and automatic naturalization) Hamilton believed

that foreigners will generally be apt to bring with them attachments to the persons they have left behind; to the country of their nativity, and to its particular customs and manners… They will also entertain opinions on government congenial with those under which they have lived, or if they should be led hither from a preference to ours, how extremely unlikely is it that they will bring with them that temperate love of liberty, so essential to real republicanism.

There were notable exceptions, but the general rule was that “the influx of foreigners” tended to

produce a heterogeneous compound; to change and corrupt the national spirit; to complicate and confound public opinion; to introduce foreign propensities. In the composition of society, the harmony of the ingredients is all important, and whatever tends to a discordant intermixture must have an injurious tendency 

Neo-Hamiltonians of today who favor open borders might argue that robust immigration is an essential precondition for economic dynamism and prosperity, but again Hamilton himself differed.

In the infancy of the country, with a boundless waste to people, it was politic to give a facility to naturalization; but our situation is now changed… It appears from the last census (1800) that we have increased about one third in ten years; after allowing for what we have gained from aboard, it will be quite apparent that the natural progress of our own population is sufficiently rapid for strength, security and settlement.

Hamilton argued there was a big difference between closing the door altogether and throwing it entirely open, affirming a “pathway to citizenship” for the foreign born that involved a significant residency requirement. (Fourteen years was his initial recommendation, which he eventually dialed back to five.) But his vision of immigration always prioritized the interests of American citizens and the national interest that collectively embodied it ---Americans First, you might say. He was especially anxious about the potential for immigration to degrade national security. Taking a position that might have come from the anti-amnesty community of today, or from right wingers who fear a link between Muslim immigration and Islamist terrorism, Hamilton insisted that

To admit foreigners indiscriminately to the rights of citizens the moment they put foot in our country would be nothing less than to admit the Grecian horse into the citadel of our liberty and sovereignty.

Hamilton thought that “The impolicy of admitting foreigners to an immediate and unreserved participation in the right of suffrage, or in the sovereignty of a Republic” was obvious---“verified by the experience of all ages.” He’d read his Gibbon: “Hardly anything contributed more to the downfall of Rome, than her precipitate communication of the privileges of citizenship to the inhabitants of Italy at large.”  
He also pointed to the fate of the American Indian nation that European settlers had displaced, deriding Jefferson for romanticizing the “hospitality which the savages of the wilderness extended to our fathers arriving in this land” in his defense of open immigration. Hamilton wanted to know:

And what indeed was the courteous reception which was given to our forefathers, by the savages of the wilderness? When did these humane and philanthropic savages exercise the policy of incorporating strangers among themselves, on their first arrival in the country? When did they admit them into their huts, to make part of their families, and when did they distinguish them by making them their sachems?

With gleeful scorn Hamilton suggested that:

prudence inclines to trace the history farther, and ask what has become of the nations of savages who exercised this policy? And who now occupies the territory which they then inhabited? Perhaps a useful lesson might be drawn from this very reflection.   

The solution? Hamilton may not have called for the kind of deportation squads Trump has mentioned on the stump. Yet he was definitely of the opinion that “the mass of aliens ought to be obliged to leave the country” although advising “let us not be cruel or violent (about it.)”

Foreign born journalists who libeled government officials like himself should definitely get the official boot however. Of one foreign-born publisher who’d dissed him, Hamilton scowled:  

Renegade aliens conduct more than one of the most incendiary presses in the US and yet in open contempt and defiance of the laws they are permitted to continue their destructive labors. Why are they not sent away?

James Madison cursed Hamilton’s support for the Alien and Sedition Acts as “a monster that must forever disgrace his parents.” By contrast, Hamilton saw his support for the Alien and Sedition Acts as a proud legacy, practically calling for it to be chiseled on his gravestone.

The sedition law, branded with epithets most odious, will one day be proved a valuable feature in our national character.

Blending green-eyed envy with nativist mistrust, Hamilton insinuated that immigrant voter fraud was responsible for Jefferson’s presidential victory in 1800 and that this was the cause of Jefferson’s dramatic turnabout on immigrant question, as per Jefferson’s Message to Congress in 1802. Denouncing Jefferson for this reversal in his New York Evening Post column, Hamilton wrote:

It is certain that had the late election been decided entirely by native citizens, had foreign auxiliaries been rejected on both sides, the man who ostentatiously vaunts that the doors of public honor and confidence have been burst open to him, would not now have been at the head of the American nation.   

With all this in his clip file, Hamilton might be the last historical personage who should have been conscripted into the culture wars on behalf of Miranda's multicultural revisionism. It’s not just a bad fit. It’s 180 degrees of bad fit. It would be one thing if Miranda was trying to use the contradiction for artistic effect, work it into some kind of counterfactual or the like. But he’s not. He’s just using the character to make a righteous statement, hang the actual facts. It’s an inappropriate historical appropriation--- and not a little manipulative. 


You can almost see the eyeballs rolling and hear the groans: Yet another complaint about “political correctness,” from yet another privileged white man. Maybe they are right. Maybe we shouldn’t be all that concerned with the historical license Lin Miranda took. The show is, after all, art and entertainment, not scholarship.

Faithfulness to history is one of the show’s calling cards, however. It's something Miranda wanted the show to have and, just as important, to be appreciated for having. So the show’s historical revisionism, specifically its reluctance to acknowledge Hamilton’s not-so-nice ideas on immigration in order to make him more appealing to today’s ethic and racial sensibilities, says a lot about the intellectual, political and cultural climate that nurtured the show. A lot about the slack-minded and ahistorical journalistic zeitgeist too. Bad enough that Lin-Manuel Miranda tortured Hamilton to betray his nationalist hostility to "aliens;" worse that no one in the media or the commentariat called him on that.   
One thing that's highlighted is the hold that identity politics has on our thinking, and just how socially, culturally and politically fragmenting this has become. The left has embraced diversity with a moralistic, often intolerant fervor, while the right, at least the pro Trump right, has been accused of encouraging “a white-identity politics more explicit than anything America has seen in decades,” as the conservative Times columnist Ross Douthat put it. The immigration question is in the molten center, polarizing the electorate and paralyzing the political process as seen in the divisiveness of the Trump candidacy and Congress's long inability to pass "comprehensive immigration reform." Hamilton’s warning about the potential that immigration had for “dividing our community and distracting our councils” has never been so resonant. Sometimes I wonder whether there really is even a national sense of "We" anymore. 

Another thing that Hamilton highlights is the profound solicitude for the immigrant narrative, in the arts, the media and academia at least---a tendency to romanticize and mythologize immigration rather than thinking about it with the rigor and realism its complexities demand.  The solicitude is thickened by the cult of subjectivity, which is especially strong in relation to minority artists. And its worsened by a generalized, society-wide historical illiteracy that makes us forget warnings over 100 years ago about the perils of ethnic and racial tribalism and hyphenated identities, or scoff at such warnings because they were the products of white men fearful of losing cultural hegemony.

There’s also a certain demographic triumphalism, a kind of glee over the shrinking of the white majority and the rise of a new, non-white plurality— “The End of Whiteness,” it’s been called. In this new dispensation, white cultural hegemony and the white privilege that undergirds it must be dismantled.  White men are seen as especially culturally and politically problematic---to be negated and dismissed---even disappeared, figuratively at least. Miranda says his all-minority cast is a reflection of “what America looks like now.” Which is telling. Last time I checked the census data, non-Hispanic whites were 62% of the current US population, whereas the cast of Hamilton is a tiny fraction of that---basically the deranged King George. Demographers predict that whites will no longer be a majority by 2050. But it’ll be quite a while before nine out of every ten Americans are nonwhite like the cast on stage.  

Whites of course, are expected to respond with polite self-abnegation, taking "radical chic" to another level. The double standard is stark: demographic change is celebrated as racial and social justice. Questioning it will make people wonder if you’re a Trumpkin---or a pro Trump white nationalist.

In such a climate it wasn’t surprising that the producers could get away relatively unscathed when they posted an audition notice which stipulated that they were exclusively seeking “NON-WHITE” actors---i.e.  “No Whites Need Apply.”  A few news organizations noted it, but the double standard the audition notice represented---reverse racism really---somehow did not smudge the show’s halo.

It’s significant that the only main character in the show playing to racial type is the tyrannical King George. Moreso, how this has been interpreted. In his review, Times theater critic Ben Brantley wrote

George is funny, fun company. But ultimately it’s not his story. “Hamilton” is, among other things, about who owns history, who gets to be in charge of the narrative.

As Brantley sees it, the multicultural fervor of the nonwhite cast is the equivalent of the revolutionary fervor of the founding fathers; the contemporary multicultural kulturkampf = 1776.   The characters Miranda created  

are probably a lot closer to the real men who inspired this show than the stately figures of high school history books. Before they were founding fathers, these guys were rebellious sons, moving to a new, fierce, liberating beat that never seemed to let up. “Hamilton” makes us feel the unstoppable, urgent rhythm of a nation being born.

Attacks on white privilege both reflect and reinforce an insistence on immigrant entitlement---immigrant privilege if you will. It's argued that America is and always has been a “nation of immigrants,” who have a superseding claim on the American Dream. This tends to slight, if not altogether ignore, the 85% of population who were born right here. These native born and their narrative are secondary; their concerns, apprehensions and aspirations need to take a backseat. Just being native-born, or identifying yourself to canvassers as an “American” (instead of an ethnic hyphenate) is depicted pejoratively. As this Times piece on the Geography of Trumpism suggests, they are marks of bigotry or ressentiment, 

In some views, immigrants are seen as more morally and politically worthy of being in America than those who are already here with superseding claims because of that. Lumpen Americans are practically seen as dissipates who would collectively flounder without the “invention and renewal” that immigration brings. It’s hard not to read pundits making these arguments, neocons mainly, as seeing native born Americans as “less than,” blocking a replacement population standing ready to take their place. I’ve even read pundits who argue that America might think about expatriating some of its people--- a “Linked Out” policy for the workforce. It’s the kind of self-parodying premise that Jonathan Swift, author of A Modest Proposal, could have a field day with.

And it's a significant historical reversal.  Americans used to ask whether immigrants were worthy of their country--- whether they were healthy and mentally fit enough to avoid becoming “public charges,” and whether they were capable of assimilating and of being loyal.  Now, as Times editorial writer Lawrence Downes phrased it recently, the question is “Is the country worthy of them?”  

The tendency among some GOP presidential candidates “to hold Americans up to unfavorable comparison with newcomers” has helped Donald Trump, says the Atlantic’s David Frum, himself a Canadian immigrant. Disparaging the idea that Trump’s success was tied to his ”racist appeal to bigots and haters,” Frum observed that the immigration issue “cuts deep not because Republicans are so nativist, but because so many Republicans have come to fear that their leaders have turned anti-native.” Candidates like Jeb Bush who gush about immigrants having a better work ethic and more intact families as they warn that America is destined to decline if we don’t embrace them are basically “insulting native born Americans, in essence saying that left on their own, the descendants of the people who built the country lack what it takes to keep the country great.”

This is a moment too when journalistic clarity about immigration is clouded by racial and ethnic attitudinizing and accusation, with piety and moral sanctimony smothering vital distinctions.  Millennial journalists are particularly prone to this kind of glib moralizing, often approaching the immigration issue as they were pressing the “like” button on Facebook. According to Washington Post columnist Catherine Rampell, GOP “appeals to nativism” in this election year

are often cloaked in the procedural legalese of having the right “papers,” but at heart the message isn’t really about legal status: To this crowd, anyone who doesn’t look sufficiently white or sound sufficiently Anglophonic is  illegal until proven otherwise.

Rampell, who was a New York Times theater writer before going to the Post, did mention the disparity between Hamilton's jaundiced view of immigration and the show's core message. But most arts reporters and commentaries did not, leaving the show's framing assumptions and its political spin unchallenged. And when Rampell noted Hamilton's "frighteningly nativist tendencies," she pooh-poohed them in wholly PC terms instead of situating them in historical context. Hamilton and our other "most venerated Founding Fathers" were guilty of ignoring "abundant evidence of the additive properties of ethnic diversity and benefits of infusing the economy with fresh blood." 

Since journalists are often dependent on academics for historical perspective, the blame may rest in part on the scholarly experts cheerleading for the show instead of pointing out its fallacies. The Times did run one piece back in April that posed the question whether the Hamilton of the show was "out of sync" with history, basically suggesting that the musical was guilty of "glossing over less attractive aspects of (Hamilton's) politics that were not necessarily as in tune with contemporary progressive values" as audiences may think. The piece introduced several scholars who took issue with the show, with most of their complaints focusing on Hamilton's profoundly inegalitarian thinking and how much of "a pass" that the production got on this. Reporter Jennifer Schuessler wrote that "it was an odd moment for the pubic to embrace an unabashed elitist who liked big banks, and at one point called for a monarchical president and a Senate that served for life." The piece quoted Princeton professor and longtime Dissent magazine editor Sean Wilentz who said that Hamilton was certainly "more of a man for the one per cent than for the 99 percent." 

But no scholars in that piece---no scholars anywhere for that matter--- took on the anti-immigration angle. When asked about the show's historical accuracy the typical response was that of Yale's Joanne Freeman, a specialist in the history of the American Revolution and the print journalism of that era. Appearing on public radio, Freeman praised Hamilton for getting the "spirit" and "flavor" of events just right. 


To be sure, Ron Chernow’s 2004 biography could have put a bit more emphasis on the evolution of Hamilton’s anti-immigration sentiments, been better at explaining how someone who had been “America’s most famous foreigner born citizen, once an influential voice for immigration” came to be so “intolerant” about it. He could have actually quoted some of Hamilton’s more resonant anti immigrant statements, such as the one in which he warns about dividing the community and distracting “our councils” instead of merely footnoting the newspaper columns they appeared in. He also pathologizes Hamilton’s nativism, blaming his bitterness over political setbacks, his obsession with political rivals, “a morbidly exaggerated fear of disorder” and clinical depression, which tends to make these views more a function of personal failings than policy.  But the book does have a fairly in-depth discussion of Hamilton’s leading role in the Alien and Sedition Acts, as well as the enmity and scorn this drew. Chernow says the Alien & Sedition Acts represented a “political crossroads,” both for the budding American nation and for Hamilton the political figure. A dramatist looking for transformative arcs in his main character might notice something like this. You wonder whether Miranda read the whole book. 

You also have to wonder about what kind of feedback Chernow gave Miranda as his historical advisor. It doesn’t seem like Chernow raised too many objections to Miranda’s musical adaptation, their relationship resembling a kind of smitten literary and ideological bromance.   

In the Times’ T Magazine, Chernow described meeting Miranda for the first time, being charmed by him and then asked to be his advisor right there on the spot. Chernow said Miranda told him “’I want the historians to take this seriously.’” This was “pretty unique.”

Usually  historians are considered pests and kept a million miles from productions. It showed great strength and integrity that Lin-Manuel was willing to let me hang around the show and incorporate me into the creative team. 

After Chernow saw a Youtube video of Miranda singing the show’s opening song at the White House for the Obamas he thoughtWow, I am strapped to a real rocket with this young guy.” He was a bit taken aback at a rehearsal when he realized that all of the characters in the room were black and Latino.

But after a minute or two I started to listen and forgot the color or ethnicity of these astonishingly talented young performers. Within five minutes, I became a militant on the subject of color-blind casting. 

Chernow underscored the parallel between the insurgents of the American revolution and today’s ascendant multiculturals, practically quoting Ben Brantley verbatim.    

The miracle of the play is that it shows us who we were as a nation but also who we are now.  This young, multiracial cast has a special feeling for the passion, urgency and idealism of the American Revolution, which maybe shouldn’t surprise us. Our history is the saga of outsiders becoming insiders — of the marginal and dispossessed being welcomed as citizens. Lin-Manuel offers us an Alexander Hamilton who is the quintessential immigrant and outsider who lends his talents and energies to creating the new nation.

What differences Chernow had with the script and the score were minor, he said. They were mostly matters of compression, economy or the “shading” of Hamilton’s character, all of which Chernow simply let go. “I knew this wasn’t going to work if I was some finger-wagging pedant,” he told the Wall Street Journal. Chernow told Playbill that his involvement has been "a biographer's wish-fulfillment fantasy,” and is happy with the book and the show’s service to history.  Before, Hamilton was the most overlooked and misunderstood founding father,” Chernow wrote in T. Now, he’s seen as “chic and glamorous.” 

From beyond the grave, Hamilton can no longer complain of neglect. He is right up there on the marquee at the Richard Rodgers Theatre. Hamilton, never bashful, would have been happy to take a bow.

Lin Miranda and Ron Chernow may have put together a hit Broadway show that celebrates immigrants as people who “get the job done.” But they’ve done a dirty job on history.

Of course it’s always good to be remembered. Not so much though if the memorialization process involves significant mischaracterization of someone whose ideas and opinions were not only out of line with the show’s portrayal but fundamentally at odds with it. That’s not reviving a historical legacy. That’s implanting a false historical memory—ideological projection.    

In fact, as vain as Hamilton was, I’m not so sure he would be so ready to take a bow from the stage. With his kind of anti immigrant attitude, Hamilton would be much more likely to scramble up on a soapbox outside the theater to fulminate against the dishonesty of the show that bears his name, slamming it, Trump-like, as yet another example of how easily foreigners make Americans into chumps. 

Railing against “the dispositions of foreigners when they get too early footing in a country,” as well as the apathetic response of his countrymen to that threat, Hamilton demanded to know   

Where is the virtuous pride that once distinguished Americans? Where the indignant spirit which in defence of principle, hazarded a revolution to attain that independence now insidiously attacked?