“…We have been warning the Republican Party for years since Tom Tancredo ‘darkened the steps’ of the White House under the George W. Bush Administration. From Tom Tancredo to Sen. Russell Pearce who is on the record multiple times saying he wants to bring back “Operation Wetback”, and with Joe Arpaio making jokes about the “mysterious Mexican immigrant deaths” in his prison. It’s no wonder why they are leaving in droves….”
The Great American Philosopher once said that It ain’t over till it’s over. It is entirely possible it is starting to be over. The most promising sign I’ve seen in years is the fact that Timmy T. and Babe Buchanan (sister of the NOT – ? racist Patrick J) could only raise less than five hundred bucks to help save Russell Pearce, one of their great allies!
Michael Medved’s new column in the Daily Beast says it quite succinctly. Paraphrasing Medved, just shut up about it already yet!
“…But Republican presidential candidates still talk as if immigration hardliners will decide crucial primary battles—ignoring the fact that they never have. As a rallying cry for conservatives, the get-tough-on-illegals mantra flopped miserably in 2008 in both the general election and GOP primaries. Colorado Rep. Tom Tancredo made angry resistance to unauthorized immigrants the centerpiece of his presidential campaign (“If you want to call me a single-issue candidate, that’s fine,” he told the Conservative Political Action Committee) but gained no traction anywhere and dropped out before the Iowa caucuses. His colleague Rep. Duncan Hunter of California also stressed immigration concerns and drew only 1 percent in Iowa.
Meanwhile, the underfunded and overage John McCain, a notorious moderate on immigration who had previously supported a path to legalization for the undocumented, won 31 primaries or caucuses, prevailing decisively even in immigration-sensitive states on the Mexican border such as California, New Mexico, Texas, and his home base of Arizona.
Why would ranting against illegals work any better for presidential candidates in 2012 than in 2008, when all available public-opinion surveys show that concern over the issue has receded, not intensified?…”
Immigrants are good for the economy. At least they think so in Dayton. Pink Flamingo friend and confidant Sally Vee sent this to me. Sorry, but it has nothing to do with immigration reform and everything to do with racism and bias against Hispanics. Nothing more and nothing less. It’s all about the hate!
David Frum wrote:
“…Since 1970, the United States has admitted 40 million migrants into the country. I’m one of them, I was born in Canada. Unlike the pre-1970 immigrants- and unlike post-1970 immigrants to Canada and Australia – the post-1970 immigrants to the US are less well-educated and less-skilled than the native born population. Increasingly, immigrants arrive poor – stay poor – and have poor children and grandchildren.
The tilt in US immigration policy toward the poor and unskilled imposes very large costs on the whole country. ETS – the people who write and administer the SAT – estimates that immigration decisions already made ensure that the US workforce of the 2030s will be less skilled and even less literate than the US workforce of the 1990s. Social welfare costs will rise accordingly.
How’d this happen? It happened in large part because we have taken a very permissive attitude to illegal immigration. In the decade of the 2000s, for example, more than half the immigrants to enter the US entered illegally: somewhere between 5 million and 8 million people depending on who is counting.
No other country on earth faces an illegal immigration population on anything like this scale, because most countries punish employers who use illegal labor. Enforcement is never perfect of course. Illegals still find work in small enterprises and farms. But only in the United States do you find entire industries – and major corporations – using illegal labor on a very large scale.
One short anecdote illustrates why this is so.
In the 1990s, the meatpacking industry massively shifted from legal to illegal labor. Illegal labor was preferred not only because illegals could be paid less per hour, but also because meatpacking is a very dangerous job. An injured legal worker is entitled to worker compensation, health care and other costly benefits. An injured illegal worker has no recourse.
Prodded by outraged unions, the Clinton administration launched a crackdown on the industry in the late 1990s. Packing plants were raided, accounts were audited. Some big plants were almost 90% illegal, which does not happen by accident.
The response? The meatpackers protested the crackdown and Congress defunded the enforcement program.
Through the next decade, illegal labor flowed into homebuilding, eldercare, and other major industries. It wasn’t a secret. And from the point of view of the public officials averting their eyes, it wasn’t really a policy failure either: they saw illegal immigration as an important component of America’s competitiveness strategy, a way to suppress wages and thus inflation.
Today’s debate over a fence on the Mexican border is a distraction, and I’d suggest: a deliberate distraction. Any fence will be tangled in litigation: it took 11 years of lawyering to build just 14 miles of fence between San Diego and Tijuana. Enforcement must take place in the workplace – and that is precisely where the most powerful lobbies in US society wish to prevent it from occurring. I think it is powerfully symbolic that the most strident voice demanding a fence, lethally electrified no less, is that of Republican candidate for president Herman Cain – a past chief lobbyist for the National Restaurant Association, one of the most powerful of the anti-enforcement lobbies in Washington…..”
“…“Illegal” is the latest in a long line of euphemisms that politicians use to signal their antipathy to a reviled racial or ethnic group, in this case, Latinos. No, no, you say, this has nothing to do with animosity toward Hispanics; it’s about protecting the border and obeying the law. Really? Then why don’t we call the CEOs of the companies that hire illegal immigrants “illegals”? Our last three presidents all violated America’s drug laws. The current Treasury secretary violated America’s tax laws. Former House majority leader Tom DeLay recently was convicted of money laundering. I look forward to hearing Mitt Romney and Fox News refer to them as “illegals” too.
People from nonstigmatized ethnic groups don’t get called “illegals” no matter what they do. When I grew up in Boston in the 1980s, the city was filled with Irish workers with forged immigration papers. But since Irish politicians ran the city, those workers were treated gingerly. In the mid-1990s, after the first World Trade Center attack prompted a federal crackdown on illegal immigrants, agents from what was then called the Immigration and Naturalization Service swooped into Boston and deported 243 undocumented workers from the Dominican Republic and another 16 from tiny Cape Verde. As for the Irish, as Boston Magazine noted in 2008, the INS agents managed to find only four. Had a newscaster in the Boston of my youth called the undocumented Irish “illegals,” he would have been fired…”
This matters. It all matters. If the GOP does not shut up already yet, we’re going to blow 2012.