The Great Wall of Texas


The latest frontier in privatization is … the frontier itself:

If the government doesn't build security fencing along the Mexico border, Minuteman border watch leader Chris Simcox says he and his supporters will….Simcox said a half-dozen landowners along the Arizona-Mexico border have said they will allow fencing to be placed on their borderlands, and others in California, Texas and New Mexico have agreed to do so as well.

The Minutemen are border hawks, while I want America's immigration laws to be a lot looser. Nonetheless, I have to confess a sneaking sympathy for this latest project, and not just because it's so charmingly quixotic. Illegal immigrants sometimes do genuine damage to other people's possessions as they slip into the country: dropping garbage, setting fires, and cutting the somewhat flimsier fences that ranchers use to keep their livestock in line. The only full-fledged solution is to make it easier to enter the U.S. through normal means, so the migrants don't have to go looking for cracks in the border. But as long as the government is creating this incentive to trespass, I can hardly blame the victims for trying to defend their property.

I'm far from convinced, mind you, that this fence plan will work. But it's their money, so let 'em try it.

Jason Talley comments: "The private fence would [cost] between $125 and $150 a foot. I have an idea where they could get some inexpensive labor to install it."