Immigration

The GOP's Suicide Pact on Immigration

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By many accounts, the Republican leadership (at least in the House, where Speaker John Boehner bestrides the chamber like a leather-skinned Colossus), is working to pull together some sort of "immigration reform" that will doubtless go poorly. Already one wing of the GOP is clamoring that "Amnesty=Suicide" and the other is…saying that newcomers are welcome but only after we finish building a 10,000-foot-tall fence that stretches along the coast from San Diego to Boston's Logan Airport.

In my latest Daily Beast col, I suggest that, if the GOP is actually serious about its limited-government rhetoric, it should use the immigration issue as a way to talk about reducing the size, scope, and spending of the federal government—especially on welfare programs for the native-born folks who have become increasingly dependent on such handouts since George W. Bush increased spending on food stamps, disability claims, and unfunded extensions of long-term unemployment benefits.

Snippets:

Republicans insist that the federal government is too inefficient and incompetent to deliver the mail or to oversee health care, but it's nonetheless qualified to police thousands of miles of borders and run employment checks on hundreds of millions of workers? Come on guys, get your story straight.

The simple fact, one that Republicans should embrace, is that governments don't really control aggregate immigration flows any more than they control aggregate consumer demand. Immigration is the result of far larger forces than even totalitarian governments can control, including economic opportunity in the destination country and material conditions in the home country….

In late 2008 and early 2009 – a period in which spending authority was shared by Presidents Bush and Obama – real federal outlays shot up to around $10,000 per capita and show no signs of coming down anytime soon. Indeed, budget deals these days seem to be little more than bi-partisan raids on proposed spending reductions such as the sequester.

If Republicans are really the party of free trade and limited government – and if they really believe in American exceptionalism and the lure of the Shining City Upon a Hill – they'll take this opportunity to welcome immigrants while rolling back the welfare state.

Read the whole thing.

NEXT: A. Barton Hinkle Says Obama's Progressive Mirage Has Faded

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  1. I think we can all agree that we should not encourage mass immigration of bandana wearing bandits with dual six-shooters. There simply are not enough jobs for the skillset.

    1. Encourage? no, but if we leave it to the market we’ll have just enough banditos and no more.

  2. “rolling back the welfare state” = racist

    1. Yeah that is totally going to happen real soon.

      And maybe I am just a cynic but I really don’t see “cut Americans off welfare so we can let more Mexicans in” as a very good way to win votes.

      1. Distracting people with more free shit is a more likely tact. Free turkey legs!

        1. Obviously by free I ment “free”.

          1. GRATIS IS NOT LIBRE!

            /fsf

      2. And maybe I am just a cynic but I really don’t see “cut Americans off welfare so we can let more Mexicans in” as a very good way to win votes.

        This. Just another possible method of suicide.

        Republicans insist that the federal government is too inefficient and incompetent to deliver the mail or to oversee health care, but it’s nonetheless qualified to police thousands of miles of borders and run employment checks on hundreds of millions of workers?

        Wow, talk about false equivalence. One of these is about 100 times easier than the other.

        1. Wow, talk about false equivalence. One of these is about 100 times easier than the other.

          Doesn’t matter because the USG can’t do either.

  3. I think policing the border is a bit easier than running healthcare. Pretty much every nation in history has managed to do it at some level.

    The fact is Hispanics like big government and like Democrats. That isn’t likely to change soon. The only Republican to get a decent percentage of Hispanic votes was George W. Bush, who last I looked was not high on Gillespie’s list of Presidents and isn’t considered very small government.

    Whether you think amnesty is right or wrong, there is only political downside for the GOP. Maybe rather than try to beat the GOP into committing political suicide, a better strategy would be convince Hispanics to vote on other issues and split their vote more evenly so that one side doesn’t feel like it is committing political suicide by letting more of them in.

    1. “…Hispanics like big government…”

      This is too often ignored. It is nothing more than a parade of little Che Guevaras and Shining Path admirers that come here from down south.

      South/Central America is NOT a freedom/liberty crowd.

      1. Well treating people like an monolithic undifferentiated mass and not an aggregate of self-interested individuals is *sure* to make liberty-politics oh-so-more-appealing, isn’t it?

        1. IF they don’t want to be viewed that way, maybe they should stop acting that way. Pointing out that 95% of Black people vote Democrat is not treating them as a undifferentiated mass. It is just pointing out reality. Same here.

          1. Just like them Chinese. Communists to the core! If’n they wasn’t, why’d they go and have themselves a communist nation then? They don’t WANT freedom! also, blacks are MADE for labor. Its in their *genes*

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_racism

            1. So black people don’t vote Democrat? That is going to be news to a lot of people.

            2. Just like them Chinese. Communists to the core! also, blacks are MADE for labor. Its in their *genes*

              It may be worth pointing out that communism is a political ideology that is not genetic whereas black skin is the physical expression of a gene. So comparing the two as if they were the same is a category error. Islam isn’t genetic either, in case that ever comes up (it often does). Your chosen political viewpoints are apt to be a better indication of a voluntary preference than, say, your skin color.

              So, for example, pointing out that their polling date indicates:

              On balance, Asian Americans prefer a big government that provides more services (55%) over a smaller government than provides fewer services (36%). In contrast, the general public prefers a smaller government over a bigger government, by 52% to 39%.

              Doesn’t make Pew Research racist.

          2. The problem isn’t that Latinos are inherently gonna vote for Democrats no matter what, because that’s just not true. The problem is that way too many Republicans hold despicable anti-freedom views on immigration that appear to be customed-designed to shove latinos into the Democratic fold.

            1. I think this is about the best said response on this subject.

            2. The only Republican they ever voted for was Bush. Do you think they did so because he was small government or because they thought he was going to give them goodies?

              And lots of Democrats, especially black ones are very anti immigration. And immigration isn’t even the number one issue for a lot of Latins.

              I hate to break it to you, but Hispanics just aren’t that into you. They are not going to become libertarians. At best they will be big government Catholic SOCONs.

              1. The only Republican they ever voted for was Bush. Do you think they did so because he was small government or because they thought he was going to give them goodies?

                Bush’s pre-1st term profile was significantly different than his legacy.

                I’ve said it before, but when GWB was first sworn into office, people in the European press were deeply concerned that America wouldn’t be involved enough in the world… They were literally afraid GWB would tone down America.

      2. Collectivist dipshit spotted.

        1. So aliens created those leftists governments in Latin America? They are in no way a reflection of the preferences of the large majority of people who live there?

          Screaming COLLECTIVIST doesn’t make the facts different than what they are.

          1. By this logic, all those white people in Scandinavia who voted in welfare states are evidence that the GOP should try to keep whites out of this country.

            1. that the GOP should try to keep whites out of this country.

              I could get behind that policy.

            2. I think if we imported the country of Sweden into the US, we would have a bigger welfare state.

              White people in California are liberal as hell. And when they move, they make the states they move to more liberal.

              The same people who talk about liberals moving out of blue states and voting for the same stupid policies, don’t think this rule applies to Mexicans for some reason.

      3. So what? It’s not as if people come from Mexico to become citizens and vote. They primarily come here to work, and have every intention of going back to Mexico eventually.

        1. IIRC the easier it is to cross the border the higher the rate of cyclical immigration and the lower the rate of people settling in for the long haul. It’s probably been 10 years since I’ve done formal reading on the topic, so take that with a grain of salt.

      4. It is nothing more than a parade of little Che Guevaras and Shining Path admirers that come here from down south.

        Yeah that’s why Colombia and Mexico are moving in the direction of free markets-because it’s all Shining Path and Che down there.

        What a dipshit.

        1. Moving towards some free market legislation due solely to the fact they are broke due to incredibly socialist and freedom killing legislation does not make Mexico or South America liberty minded in any way.

          I’m much more pro-open-borders than John is – but I’m with John here – what is the problem with identifying reality for what it is – most south American immigrants seem to vote for bigger government/welfare state.

          This isn’t to say they cannot possibly be convinced otherwise, and in general they have lots of views that match conservatives more than Dems, but the numbers all show this.

          It’s odd to be against reality…

    2. I think policing the border is a bit easier than running healthcare. Pretty much every nation in history has managed to do it at some level.

      Eh, you can also say every nation has provided some kind of healthcare to its citizens throughout history. Effectiveness is the key metric. And no border control is effective against demographic, economic or environmental change; if people want to get in, they’ll get in.

      1. No, no border control is completely effective. You can stop some people. And even if they do get in, that doesn’t mean you should make them citizens.

        Saying border control can never completely work just begs the question of whether the control that can be achieved is worth doing or to put it another way, just because a determined burglar can get past the locks in my house doesn’t mean it is not worth it to lock the door at all.

        1. If people want to come here because they see opportunity and want to be productive citizens, I see no reason to stop them.

          Jingoistic and fear based arguments for border control, however, I find annoying.

          1. I find people who think that the only arguments against immigration are jingoism to be even more annoying. It is just Libertarians reducing themselves to the level of liberals and screaming RACIST instead of making an argument.

            1. “It is just Libertarians reducing themselves to the level of liberals and screaming RACIST instead of making an argument.”

              This.

            2. I find people who think that the only arguments against immigration are jingoism to be even more annoying. It is just Libertarians the truth and it gets me real butthurt.

              FTFY

              1. Way to prove John correct.

                Maybe to make the point even more clear – you can reply to me and repeat “racist” again.

                You know – just for fun, and since it’s sooooo true, what’s the harm, right?

          2. If people want to come here because they see opportunity and want to be productive citizens, I see no reason to stop them.

            and no one is stopping those people. We have a system that has created this path for millions upon millions. Why pretend that Mexicans or other Hispanics are incapable of using that system so a new one must be created?

            Every nation controls its border, to include the ones north and south of us.

            1. Why pretend that Mexicans or other Hispanics are incapable of using that system so a new one must be created?

              In point of fact, there is virtually no path besides the visa lottery for unskilled and uneducated immigrants from any country – our immigration system is primarily based on skills/education and family relations. And even for those folks, our legal immigration system is a joke. It can literally take decades to go through that process.

              1. fair point. Then fix the entire system rather than the part that caters to what the two Teams see as potential votes.

                1. Then fix the entire system rather than the part that caters to what the two Teams see as potential votes.

                  Bingo. Unlimited guest worker visas would be a good start.

              2. If our legal immigration system is a joke then what is Mexico’s Retention System like?

            2. and no one is stopping those people. We have a system that has created this path for millions upon millions. Why pretend that Mexicans or other Hispanics are incapable of using that system so a new one must be created?

              So once they figure out what they need/want to do, they should just sit idle for a decade or two until some government somewhere graciously gives them permission to cross a river and engage in a mutually acceptable employment contract?

              1. the issue of a decade or two is the larger systemic problem with the immigration system. The rest is not going to change to suit your preferences. Borders are not new things; countries have managed them for a long time with varying degrees of success. We do a poor job of it.

          3. If people want to come here because they see opportunity and want to be productive citizens, I see no reason to stop them.

            See if you can spot the conclusion contained in your premise.

            I love that it’s completely uncontroversial in libertarian circles to presume that 90% of society is composed of one variety of leech or another, except for immigrants, who are not subject to the same incentives as every other human being on the planet.

            inb4 “IMMIGRANTS CAN’T GET WELFARE!!!”

            It’d be really nice if the people who say that ignorant shit ever actually spent a day in a welfare office.

            1. Why should I care if immigrants get welfare? Anything that hastens the inevitable death of the Welfare State is a good thing.

              1. Anything that hastens the inevitable death of the Welfare State is a good thing.

                What if the welfare state doesn’t end, at least not in our lifetimes? What if it limps on for generations slowly undermining any concept of limited government?

                That’s a possibility.

                1. That’s a possibility.

                  It’s not only a possibility it is the likely outcome.

              2. Leading up to the 2008 election I believed Obama’s inevitable victory would hasten the death of pregressive policies. Now I’m not so sure.

                Americans mostly agree having more people dependent on welfare is a bad thing. I don’t think we can end bad things with more of the same.

                1. Americans mostly agree having more people dependent on welfare is a bad thing.

                  Heh, they believe that having OTHER people dependent on welfare is a bad thing…

              3. Jordan,
                what makes you think the welfare state is going to die by anything other than utter implosion? It won’t just because some more immigrants might use it.

                1. what makes you think the welfare state is going to die by anything other than utter implosion?

                  Uh… that was my point. The worst programs (SS, Medicare, Medicaid) are already fiscally doomed. Adding more people to them will only hasten the inevitable.

              4. “Anything that hastens the inevitable death of the Welfare State is a good thing.” Yeah, because creating a huge group of people dependent on a gov’t program always results in the destruction of said program. WTF?

              5. Why should I care if immigrants get welfare?

                If you don’t care that anybody gets welfare, power to you. I think that’s a pretty shortsighted viewpoint that isn’t likely to lead to the conclusion you seek, but its at least consistent. If you think all immigrants are ass-busting dynamos who are immune to the incentive to be lazy welfare cases in the same way as Bobby Sue and Jimmy Joe, your stereotype is just as retarded as any other.

                1. (And I’m not accusing you of relying on that stereotype; merely pointing out that its a popular meme among the Reason staff who’ve only ever seen an immigrant that wasn’t on an H1B visa from an airplane at 50,000 feet)

          4. If people want to come here because they see opportunity and want to be productive citizens, I see no reason to stop them.

            Especially considering that American citizens are being paid not to work at greater rates than in any time in history.

        2. And even if they do get in, that doesn’t mean you should make them citizens.

          I’d like to see the evidence for the location of my mother’s vagina as a better method of determining citizenship.

          1. I like see the evidence that your mother’s vagina ever produced a sentient being.

          2. I’d like to see the evidence for the location of my mother’s vagina as a better method of determining citizenship.

            What other rule do you propose which wouldn’t be just as arbitrary? All rules/boundary lines/etc are somewhat arbitrary by definition.

            See speed limit – in my lifetime, I’ve seen high way speed limits for 55, 60, 65, 70, & 75, why not 53, 57, 63, 67, & 73?

            Once I owned a house where the front yard was in a different zip code than my backyard. This difference included such real items as property taxes and where any children I might have had could go to public school.

            td;lr version (if it were that good): All rules are somewhat arbitrary by their very nature.

            Ergo, that you think pointing out an arbitrary rule wrt defined and agreed upon ideas such as international boundaries, is clever or refutes the idea of whether they should exist or not is logically incorrect.

      2. If you devote enough resources, it can be quite effective. For example, the Berlin Wall was pretty effective at stopping significant movement of people across a border. The issue is whether such an effort makes sense regarding the Mexican border.

        1. the Berlin Wall was meant to keep people from leaving.

          1. Or in other words, to keep people from entering the West.

            1. no, to keep people from leaving the East. No one was trying to but into East Berlin. You can spin it however you want but that wall is markedly different from anything proposed for the Southern border.

              1. Right, because barriers only restrict movement going one way.

          2. The DMZ is kinda fun like that too. The south Koreans aren’t worried about people crossing through so it’s a forested nature preserve. The Norks are so worried about people leaving that they’ve mowed it down and mined it.

            You know you’re doing something wrong when you have to be more on guard about people fleeing your country than your neighbor is about you invading them.

        2. A Berlin Wall type fortification along the Mexican border will cost an absolute fortune and need a bureaucracy far larger than the Defense Department to maintain.

          Even with the Wall, thousands of people defected to West Berlin over the years and it was “only” 100 miles long. The US-Mexico border is nearly 4000 miles long, crossing through multiple urban areas that are fairly well integrated economically (unlike West and East Berlin); it will leak like a colander.

          Most rational people will say such a border control doesn’t make sense. However, our government isn’t run by rational people.

          1. Tightening the border is only part of it, and it would not need to be anything like the Berlin Wall. One could do a whole lot by simply ending all federal aid to any state or locality that shelters illegals, ending all government outreach to illegals (e.g. advertising food stamps in Mexico or even in Spanish), and deporting illegals when they are discovered by law enforcement.

            1. Sure, can we also reduce the federal aid to my layabout neighbors?

    3. I’m not comfortable having political affiliation be a substantive consideration when considering immigration policy. I get why it matters to the GOP, but I wish they’d be better than that.

      Half-formed thought: I think we need the ability to deport people, and the only chance of that being effective is if we can continue to keep them out. The welfare system least likely to go away is the prison system.

      My dream is scaled back welfare/medical care, diluted citizenship advantages, and practically-open borders.

      1. I’m not comfortable having political affiliation be a substantive consideration when considering immigration policy.

        Yes, but reality doesn’t always conform to ideology. If you are a libertarian, you have to acknowledge that your belief in plank Z (open borders) will conflict with your belief in planks A-Y (everything else libertarians believe in), because Z means importing enough anti-libertarians to throw all future elections to the Democrats, the most anti-libertarian major party.

        1. because Z means importing enough anti-libertarians to throw all future elections to the Democrats, the most anti-libertarian major party.

          What is the hard evidence that immigrants writ-large are anti-libertarian?

          Considering that Thomas Jefferson and Ben Franklin were kind of libertarian-ish immigrants.

            1. For those who will dismiss the link outright due to the authorship, a lot of it relies on the polling data from here:

              http://www.pewhispanic.org/201…..prc-number

              http://www.pewsocialtrends.org…..americans/

            2. How are Republicans going to square that circle? It’s not their position on amnesty that immigrants don’t like; it’s Republicans’ support for small government, gun rights, patriotism, the Constitution and capitalism.

              Reading these statistics, does anyone wonder why Democrats think vastly increasing immigration should be the nation’s No. 1 priority?

              Coulter’s conclusions are concerning. If we’re just going to declare “Don’t let them in because when they’re naturalized, they don’t vote right” is an untenable position.

              1. It’s a matter of degree. I don’t think even Coulter is saying “no immigration,” but we’re letting in tens of millions, and anything like amnesty will just encourage tens of millions more to come. About a third of Mexico tells pollsters they would move here if they could.

    4. I think policing the border is a bit easier than running healthcare. Pretty much every nation in history has managed to do it at some level.

      Many of these nations are the same ones whose people are vastly confused and perplexed as to just how huge this country is.

      If France couldn’t police their tiny-assed border in 1939, I’m not sure we can stop every ounce of marijuana coming through ours.

      1. Nobody is talking about stopping every single illegal immigrant. But there’s a lot more we could do.

    5. Whether you think amnesty is right or wrong, there is only political downside for the GOP.

      GOP did this to themselves.

      What did they think they were going to do (from a practical perspective), roundup 11M people and deport them? Put them in prison?

      All while reducing the deficit.

      herpy derpy doo

      There WILL be amnesty, as there is nothing else that can be done. Best not to be the idiots seen as objecting to that in front of 11M future voters.

      1. Best not to be the idiots seen as objecting to that in front of 11M future voters.

        The last amnesty was signed into law by a Republican president and it didn’t do the party many favors with Hispanics. Just sayin’.

        1. And strangely, Obama deporting them in record numbers actually did do him favors.

          Just had to throw that in there…

        2. True, but 25 years of listening to Republicans bag on Mexicans isn’t exactly endearing.

          There is only one way to secure a border, and that is to threaten deadly force (not advocating such an action). Unless you’re willing to do that, you best find another strategy for dealing with those who immigrate…like allowing them to become productive citizens.

          1. Even that won’t secure the border. You need to stop forcing people who want to come here to go through the desert ie re-legalize mass immigration.

            FDA is completely right: the GOP and conservative movement painted themselves into this corner.

            Here’s what’s going to happen: the idiot nativists are just going to be left behind by the national GOP, just like the Texas GOP did. The nativist bunch are totally insane and they are not nearly as powerful as their intensity would have you believe.

      2. You don’t HAVE to do that. Just take away all benefit to being here. “You want welfare? No. You want driver’s licensing? No. You want school. No.” No goodies, no illegals.

        Have to hit it from both sides, though. Slam the businesses that use illegals, since the only reason to employ them is the market distortion created by gov’t. Who’s going to employ people whom they have to pay a minimum wage, ensure basic safety for, and have reasonable hours, when the “competition” (illegal labor) requires none of those things? No one, that’s who.

    6. there is only political downside for the GOP.

      Yeah that’s why the Texas GOP has been beaten to death by the Hispanic vote-no wait that’s not true. It’s just your fantasy.

      The fact is Hispanics like big government and like Democrats.

      Your axioms =/= facts

    7. East Berliners ran through a shooting galleries and dug tunnels with there bare hands to escape tyranny.

      Latinos will come as long as the carrot waits for them on the US side of the fence. Because of regulation they become more attractive to an underground economy being run by some of the largest companies here.

      Much harder to compete with them in the job market when our own government has it’s working citizens on lock down.

      This isn’t about votes but control. Crony elites need to be able to bypass what the everyman can’t(We have no budget for lawyers.)

      Countries that control their boarders don’t have the carrot.

      I would pursue my music career and give up working but I’m a self employed white man, I don’t qualify for any Govt’ handouts. I did get an offer to construct internment camps where they would let me live, without facebook of course.

  4. ” I suggest that, if the GOP is actually serious about its limited-government rhetoric…”

    Adam Savage = “Well *there’s* your problem!”

  5. “George W. Bush increased spending on food stamps, disability claims, and unfunded extensions of long-term unemployment benefits.”

    Aha! Shreek is actually the Jacket’s sockpuppet! Way to stir the waters, Nick! BOOOSH!!!11!!!

    1. If I didn’t exist the Reason staff would need to invent me.

      1. I think they just may have.

      2. Someone has to keep the memory of Sarah Palin alive.

  6. Good article, but I’m sparing myself from the comments section this time. Is Nick a Kochtopus-fellating teabagger this week or an Obamatard liberal loon?

    1. Why can’t he be both?

    2. We can’t he be both?

  7. Republicans insist that the federal government is too inefficient and incompetent to deliver the mail or to oversee health care, but it’s nonetheless qualified to police thousands of miles of borders and run employment checks on hundreds of millions of workers?

    That’s so retarded it’s almost painful. The government is, by definition, inefficient and incompetent at everything it does. But we still delegate certain functions to it for the sake of equity, convenience or utility. That statement is no different from saying “libertarians insist that the federal government is too inefficient and incompetent to deliver the mail or to oversee health care, but it’s nonetheless qualified to investigate fraud and provide military defense?” The government doesn’t have to be competent or efficient at investigating fraud or providing for military defense in order for those to be legitimate uses for the government. And that gets at the actual point: the real question is whether immigration control is a legitimate function of government. I’ve been assured it is absolutely not, in any capacity, up to and including preventing malicious characters or communicable diseases. So make that case. The analogy is garbage.

    1. ^^THIS^^

      It is a sorry analogy and nothing but question begging. Yes, the government is generally inefficient at what it does. We know that. But knowing that doesn’t answer the question of what our immigration policy should be.

      1. Maybe. However, I can’t help but feel, that, just like the WoD, the general solution to the “problem” is throw more money at it. So the solution mechanism is not much different than for Progtard favorite causes.

        There’s very little focus on what a realistic outcome might be given limited resources. The focus is simply, “Here’s what we desire, and let’s keep spending until we get there.”

        1. The outcome is what we have now. People come here, work illegally for a few years and go home. If being here illegally was that bad, so many people wouldn’t be doing it.

          The only people who seem to care that much about the current system are just Progs pissed off they can’t register illegals to vote. Really the whole thing is not nearly the problem either side pretends it is.

          1. “The only people who seem to care that much about the current system are just Progs pissed off they can’t register illegals to vote.”

            Seriously, you’ve never heard complaints from the Right about “teh illegalz”?

            1. I mean the harms of amnesty. But yes, the Right is convinced illegals are overrunning the country, which is also not true.

              1. But yes, the Right is convinced illegals are overrunning the country, which is also not true.

                Yeah, this is evidenced in the idea that illegals cost a lost of social dollars, which I think several studies have shown is highly unlikely.

                In fact – I think it was a Heritage Foundation study which showed illegals to likely be net tax payers into the US system due to the fact wages are auto taxed, buying stuff produces taxes, and since they are illegal, they aren’t running around signing up for medicaid or even calling the cops when they’ve been burglarized (I may be recalling who produced the study though – might be CATO).

                Now it may be true – that illegals given amnesty are more likely to request welfare than the average American – but I doubt it and without amnesty of some kind, due to the illegals wish to stay hidden, we’ll never really know whether their addition to the US melting pot would be a net-tax-revenue generator or net-cost-center-social-spending.

                I tend to think that’s unlikely that if given amnesty they would be an automatic-high-percentage welfare drain, but who knows.

                Though note – we do know their voting habits, so I think that’s a much clear picture in which to say, all things being equal, south American immigrants tend to favor D’s and bigger government for whatever reasons.

                1. This is a regional issue that those of you in New Jersey can not possibly understand. Your schools do not bear the cost of the excessive student body which does not contribute to the property taxes which in turn fund the schools, emergency rooms, and jails…. If Amnesty does go through, it is only right that they are shipped to the North East so they can get a good Union Job.

            2. I hear complaints from people who want the border controlled. Almost none of them are in a capacity to do something about it. I also hear from the Chamber and other bidness interests who love the flow of cheap labor.

        2. there is no reason to focus on an outcome, realistic or otherwise. This movie has played before, back in ’86. Absent substantive effort at border control, today’s scenario will be repeating in another 20 years or so when the next wave of illegals has reached critical mass.

          1. That’s one of the things I find most distasteful about amnesty proposals: it acts as a safety valve on a poorly executed system rather than any attempt to improve the system. If we’re going to admit every 20 or so years that we aren’t actually able to keep people out, maybe we should do a better job of bringing them in within the system.

            Show up with a background check at the border, leave fingerprints and get a renewable on continued employment work visa. Or something similar.

            1. “Show up with a background check at the border, leave fingerprints and get a renewable on continued employment work visa. Or something similar.

              AHA! You haven’t *ruled out* exploding collars, concentration camps, and a Deportation Catapult!

              (also, those other things you mentioned? they’re boring and no one will vote for us GOP incumbents unless we come up with something better than the Laser Wall or Shark Moat or Drone Hunters which my competitors have proposed)

          2. Absent substantive effort at border control

            Cuz it’s not like we spend billions to assuage the endless discontent of nativists! Don’t even consider making it easier to immigrate here so they don’t have to do it illegally.

    2. I would tend to agree that argument is a little disingenuous. If you want to make the argument for open borders, then make that argument.

  8. Oh, yay.

    Four hundred comments from the hateboner mob, coming right up.

    1. “DEY TUK UR JERBS!!111!!!

  9. Leaving aside right/wrong and viewing this solely in political terms, I don’t get why the GOP is letting this be an issue right now. They can continue to block any amnesty attempts quietly, while not actively doing anything else.

    They can open the real debate after the election, which makes sense, anyway, because nothing is getting passed now.

    1. Because they are not called “the Stupid Party” for nothing.

      1. Agreed, though I’d say “the” is inappropriate. “A stupid party” sounds better, because there is another.

        1. I figure we have “the Stupid Party” and “the Evil Party”. Both parties exhibit both characteristics, of course, it’s just a matter of proportions.

    2. Because their cronies are giving them a lot of money to do so. The GOP leadership hates their base probably even more than the Democrats hate the GOP base.

    3. the Chamber is for it, and it and its members write a lot of campaign checks.

    4. They’re gearing up for Mike Huckabee’s presidential run.

  10. What bugs me the most about Reason’s immigration articles is not that they are pro open borders. I am very muddled about the subject. Sometimes I am just as open borders as Reason and other times not.

    What bugs me is that Reason seems incapable of admitting the fact that some people’s interests really are hurt by open borders. Reason acts like the only reason anyone would be against total open borders is because they are racist or stupid. No, some people’s job prospects and economic future are diminished by open borders. That doesn’t mean that their interests should determine the issue. But Reason does itself and its argument no favors by pretending such people don’t exist or if they do they have no right to vote and act in their own self interests. Gillespie’s argument to these people is “sure we are going to reduce your job prospects, but we will make it up to you by making sure you can’t get welfare or unemployment”. And Nick is so arrogant and cocooned from the real world, he can’t understand why anyone would not find that argument compelling.

    1. I don’t think that Reason never recognizes that some people’s interests are hurt by open borders. They simply recognize that labor protectionism is bullshit.

      1. They simply recognize that labor protectionism is bullshit.

        No, they think that and assert it but never bother to make the case for why that is true or offer any sort of measures to limit the impact on people.

        And I am not convinced they even get that someone might be against open borders for valid reasons. I really with the Kochs would outsource Reason to Mexico as a test of the staff’s commitment to free trade and open borders.

        1. John|2.5.14 @ 11:20AM|#

          I am not convinced they even get that someone might be against open borders for valid reasons.”

          Can you bullet point them?

          *you cant use “because they vote democrat” as one. Supporting a statist policy with the excuse “or else we’ll have moar statists!” is pretty fucking dumb.

          1. Can you bullet point them?

            Depends on what you consider a “valid” reason. I think John used “valid” where perhaps “rational” would be a better choice of word. For example, it is rational for an uneducated construction worker to be against illegal immigration since they directly compete for his job and can offer benefits to an employer that he is legally prohibited from offering (such as no regulatory compliance cost). Being personally affected by a policy tends to change your outlook on it, even if it otherwise violates your principles.

          2. Sure Sport. But when I do, you will just dismiss them as “invalid” because to you “invalid” means the same thing as “I don’t like them”.

            And junior, you need to work on your vocabulary. Statist is so last year.

        2. I don’t think there is a valid reason to be against open borders. Rational, sure, but rent seekers are rational, too. So are con artists.

          Seriously, what’s a valid reason to be against open borders? I don’t consider “the Mexicans will threaten my current wage by offering to work for less” valid. If labor protectionism is valid, the free market isn’t.

          1. So acting in your own best economic interest is not a “valid reason”?

            That principle will have some interesting second order effects. I am not sure you are going to like them very much though.

            1. Bernie Madoff was acting in his own best economic interest by perpetuating a fraudulent investment scheme. Were his actions valid?

              I fully understand why someone whose job might by threatened by others who are willing to do it for less might want the government to step in and forcefully make this impossible by denying would-be immigrants the right to work. I just don’t see how this is consistent with the principles of a free market.

          2. labor protectionism

            This term has been used a couple of times in this thread but I am uncertain of it’s intended meaning.

            Anyone care to expand?

            1. It doesn’t mean anything. It is just a way of putting immigration into different terms.

            2. Sure. Labor protection is what the “they take are jobs” croud argues for.

              The same arguments that many make against more open immigration are the same arguments many argue for other trade protections.

              1. Ugh… “crowd”.

            3. This term has been used a couple of times in this thread but I am uncertain of it’s intended meaning.

              I presume just that.

              I’m a Teamster, I drive a truck. I don’t want “unsafe” mexican trucks driving around the US. So I fight NAFTA. Jerbs. Labor protectionism.

            4. In a nutshell, protectionism is an artificial restraint of free trade imposed by a governing body purportedly in the interest of “fairness.” Labor protectionism is just that in the labor market.

              In this case, our government makes it extremely difficult (nearly impossible) for unskilled workers to immigrate here legally, and it has been argued that this is done largely in order to prevent these workers from “depressing” the wages of Americans by willing to work for less. Hence, the government is “protecting” the interests of American laborers… at the expense of the American economy. In doing so, wages are kept artificially high (i.e., higher than they would be if immigrant workers could come and go freely), which in turn leads to artificially high consumer prices.

          3. Seriously, what’s a valid reason to be against open borders?

            Speaking as someone who’s largely for open borders, there’s only one issue I see that sticks in my craw, and that’s when masses of immigrants immediately get on social programs.

            To the best of my reading on the subject, that’s not anywhere near as massive a problem as your SoCon’s would like you to believe, but it could be.

            We have a party in this country whose #1 hobby horse has become paying people not to work.

            Right now, that effort is mainly concentrated on American citizens and from where I stand, it sure feels like it’s working. There’s evidence they want to extend that policy to illegal immigrants. At least with the immigration we’ve got coming in over the southern border, they want to be productive. America needs all the productive workers it can get.

            1. This is is a legitimate concern, but the issue here is with the social problems themselves, not immigration per se.

              1. The argument goes, though, that the immigration exacerbates the problems with the social programs.

                Sure, fix the social programs, then who cares about immigration? It’s a good argument, but it’s also a deep rabbit hole.

      2. I don’t think that Reason never recognizes that some people’s interests are hurt by open borders.

        May I introduce you to Shikha Dalmia…

        1. Shikha Dalmia is the most dishonest writer on immigration that Reason has.

      3. Reason seems to ignore the lure of the welfare state consistently.

    2. This is where the “cosmotarian” complaints come from. There absolutely is a disconnected beltway mentality that affects everyone who runs in those circles. When the only thing illegal immigration represents to you is an easy way to get your lawn cut for less than what some poor schlub actually trying to comply with the law can do it for, the clarity of the issue is easier to understand than it is for some high school dropout living in a trailer park struggling to learn Spanish with Rosetta Stone so he can keep his construction job at minimum wage (I’m using an actual example of someone I know in this case). It’s easier to imagine that such people don’t really exist when you’ve never actually seen one.

      1. And they are totally oblivious to the damage liberals have done to our culture of self reliance and individualism. Back when we had a confident culture that told immigrants to blend in or else, immigration had a lot fewer downsides. But now we have thousands of liberal community activists waiting to tell immigrants that fitting in is racist and they are a victim group, immigration is more of a problem.

      2. the clarity of the issue is easier to understand than it is for some high school dropout living in a trailer park struggling to learn Spanish with Rosetta Stone so he can keep his construction job at minimum wage

        So, when did libertarians start using sob stories to advocate in favor of economic protectionism?

        It’s easier to imagine that such people don’t really exist when you’ve never actually seen one.

        Or maybe they don’t mention such things because they are irrelevant. You can find someone whose interests suffer with any form of liberty. Some of us aren’t interested in utilitarian arguments when it comes to liberty.

        1. Or maybe they don’t mention such things because they are irrelevant.

          Their votes are not irrelevant. You can tell those people they don’t matter and go fuck themselves all you like. But then you can’t really complain when they vote for politicians you don’t like.

          They can tell you to fuck off too. That is what you and the Reason staff don’t seem to get.

          1. As I said: this argument applies to any liberty you care to name. Especially in the realm of economics.

            1. NAFTA is a good example here. On the aggregate, it resulted in more American jobs, and free trade is just good policy anyway. But some people actually did lose their jobs or have to develop completely new careers as a result of NAFTA, and telling them they weren’t affect by it doesn’t do you any favors. It’s obviously not true and will just piss them off.

        2. So, when did libertarians start using sob stories to advocate in favor of economic protectionism?

          The fuck are you talking about? Ignoring the actual consequences that some people will inevitably experience as a result of demographic shift (whether it’s free trade, immigration, tax policy, etc) has nothing to do with advocating for protectionism or hawking sob stories. Failing to acknowledge the concerns of the people who actually are affected by a given policy, and in fact vigorously denying that they actually will be affected by a given policy, is ignorant at best, dishonest at worst. There’s nothing wrong with recognizing that some people may be harmed by a given policy and may oppose it because of it and still advocate strongly for the policy in question.

      3. “the only thing illegal immigration represents to you is an easy way to get your lawn cut for less than what some poor schlub actually trying to comply with the law can do it for…”

        Wait a second…

        … *is* there a law regulating lawn mowers?

        If so, I’m concerned that you think Mexicans are the problem here.

        1. … *is* there a law regulating lawn mowers?

          Occupational licensing, business licensing, minimum wage law, income tax, FICA tax (or self-employment tax if operating independently), sales tax, OSHA regulation, environmental regulation (disposal of lawn waste; handling of gasoline, lawn chemicals, etc), all the way down to nuisance noise ordinances and work hour restrictions.

          Ignoring all of those things offers substantial cost savings that can be parlayed into a large competitive advantage on price. That’s not to say that American Joe can’t go open a fly by night operation and ignore all that shit as well, but the risk for him is probably greater since his reputation, credit and freedom are on the line. An illegal immigrant busted for the same set of violations will face deportation and be back a couple weeks later with a new identity (or no identity). I knew a guy working as a dishwasher clear the fuck up in bumpkinville in WA state who got deported to Mexico twice and was back both times in under a week, hired back to the same job with the same company under a new name and bogus SSN. If I’d been caught doing the same thing I’d be in the slammer for identity fraud, owing thousands of dollars to the IRS, with my name and mug in a half dozen government databases just in case I ever thought about trying to work again if they were so kind as to let me out.

          What did you think people hired illegal immigrants for, generosity of spirit?

        2. If so, I’m concerned that you think Mexicans are the problem here.

          I didn’t say anything of the kind. I was just pointing out that the issue looks different when you’re trying to save 2 bucks an hour on getting your shitters cleaned or your grass cut than it does when you’re the guy who can’t find any work without becoming a criminal because you’ve got 10 bucks an hour in compliance costs that your competition doesn’t. Keep in mind this was in response to John’s comment:

          What bugs me is that Reason seems incapable of admitting the fact that some people’s interests really are hurt by open borders.

          Most of the Reason staff is blissfully unaware of guy number 2 in this scenario because he probably wasn’t in the same English PhD program or on any of the flights from JFK to Dulles. People get pissed off about the whole “cosmotarian” characterization, but some people really are totally fucking clueless as to what’s going on outside that Manhattan-DC corridor.

          1. “‘Occupational licensing, business licensing, minimum wage law, income tax, FICA tax (or self-employment tax if operating independently), sales tax, OSHA regulation, environmental regulation (disposal of lawn waste; handling of gasoline, lawn chemicals, etc), all the way down to nuisance noise ordinances and work hour restrictions.””

            And is the idea that keeping these things is somehow a good idea?

  11. The party that supports police-state bullshit like E-verify is totally in favor of liberty and small government. Totally.

    1. Oh, and let’s not forget about the Constitution-free zones within 100 miles of the borders, in which the majority of the U.S. population lives.

      1. and which party has the authority to do something about those Constitution-free zones? Not the one you’re pissed off toward.

        1. You seem confused. I hate both parties. Both are enemies of liberty.

    2. I am pretty sure both parties support E-Verify. In fact, if e-verify is the price of amnesty, I bet Reason would be on board too.

      I would like to think that if amnesty means E-verify, which you are correct in pointing out is horrible, Reason would say no thanks to amnesty. But that doesn’t seem to be the case. Reason seems to view E-verify as a bad thing, but totally worthy it if it means amnesty.

    3. The government offloaded its tax collection duties to employers a century ago, why not border enforcement?

  12. I think since we all agree government is at best, retarded, the only possible ‘immigration policy’ one could possibly endorse with any hope for its impact working even *vaguely* towards any intended ends, is, “do less”.

    Because the DO MOAR! policy of the last 30 years or so? Not werkin there hoss. Oh, and the fence? Honestly, that shit was funny when the Germans did it, but seriously its not even a joke any more.

    http://www.cis.org/seminara/ne…..mmigration

      1. Do less.

        Yes.

    1. Yes, lets do less. Lets start doing less by not pushing for some giant “reform” of the current system.

      How about that?

      1. Look, john did a semantics!

        Less means, spend less, have less laws, let the market work it out. self ordered systems there, hoss. they work.

        1. Well Hoss, last I did some semantics too. And last I looked, at least in the world Congress inhabits, passing a big ass “comprehensive” immigration bill full every imaginable bullshit like all such bills are counts as doing “more”.

          I don’t know there Ace maybe you don’t read the papers much or are just slow witted. It is a good thing I am here to help you out there explain how things actually work outside of Libertarian land there Sport.

          1. Does going through those inland border checkpoints give you a Hardon for America or something?

            Are you suggesting that the current ‘enforcement’ regime does diddly-squat?

            Your arguments are basically identical to the Drug Prohibitionists = YES IT ISNT WORKING, YES WE SPEND BILLIONS AND GET NO RESULTS, BUT WE CANT STOP OR IT WILL BE WORSER

            1. Does going through those inland border checkpoints give you a Hardon for America or something?

              No they don’t junior. But that is why there HOSS I would prefer Congress not build more of them in the name of giving Amnesty.

              You don’t seem to get out much so let me let you in a little secret. When Congress tries to fix something, it almost always makes things worse.

              I am glad someone taught you how to use the caps lock. So there is that.

              1. ” I would prefer Congress not build more of them in the name of giving Amnesty”

                I find this a pretty bizarre notion given your primary objection above to the “Do Less” argument.

                How you get from say, “defund DHS” (my idea), to “more checkpoints” (your conclusion), is beyond me. Please enlighten.

                again – this does sound remarkably like the arguments of the anti-prohibitionists who presume vast un-demonstrated corollary effects of ‘loosening control’. CATS AND DOGS.

                [Yes, I like the caps button. Text is so *dry* without all the tone modulation stuff. YMMV]

        2. Less means, spend less, have less laws, let the market work it out.

          If you think the current immigration reform proposals will accomplish any of those objectives you’re delusional.

          1. God no.

            Who said that? The only thing I actually agree with john about is congress is never going to ever “DO LESS” without being forced to.

            I just think they *should* do less. I don’t see a huge amount of support for my view in general.

            1. I’d be fine with doing less, a lot less, and not just in terms of immigration policy, but that’s not the political reality unfortunately. That option just isn’t on the table. Believe it or not, although I’m generally seen as some neanderthal jingoist around here, I’d actually support an open immigration system with the only restrictions being based on communicable disease and intent to commit crime (including terrorism) in libertopia. But I do have many concerns about the practical implications of immigration policy within the current environment. If were made beneficent dictator for life this issue would be resolved along with about 50 others in one stroke of a pen.

              1. “I do have many concerns about the practical implications of immigration policy within the current environment.”

                Hey, all you need now is a RED or BLUE tie, and you’re halfway to congress.

                1. Yeah, anybody who takes any practicalities into consideration is a sellout asshole. I fucking get it. Unless the topic is gay marriage, in which case the only thing that matters are the practicalities, and ideological rigidity is nothing more than a pretext for beating the corpse of Matthew Shepard.

                  1. No, it was the utter vagueness of what these ‘practicalities’ are in the context of a system that is an utter demonstrable failure.

                    The ‘practicalities’ of ending the drug war include, ‘gee, what to do about all those inmates? and man, the prison guard unions *did* support person X’s last election’… yet we seem to find ways to accept that our system can adjust to changes accordingly.

                    In other words, what are the nameless ‘practicalities’ that make reforming immigration so *impossibles* in contrast to any other policy?

  13. Some people who rob banks are not even caught. We might as well just not even try.

    1. THE IMMIGRANTS TOOK ARE JOBES AND TEH WELFARE@!!? AND TOOK THEMS MEXICO!?

    2. Should I put myself on the ‘victims of immigrants’ list? THE BASTARDS BROUGHT ME HERE!?! I DIDN”T WANT THIS OBAMA CHARACTER! TAKE ME BACK TO THE OLD COUNTRY

    3. This same argument is deployed by gun control proponents in response to the fact that criminals don’t obey gun control laws.

  14. Poll: 77% of Latino voters support raising taxes on the rich

    But let’s give amnesty to 11 million illegals + another 20 million relatives who will eventually immigrate. That should certainly move America closer to a libertarian future!

    1. It seems like since no one has any valid economic rationale for restricting immigration, the default fallback is, “THEY VOTES FOR TEH STATISTS, SO WEE NEEDS A STATIST POLICY TO STOPS EM”

      Its so clever.

      1. It seems that whenever someone points out the bad real world effects of open borders, the default fall back is to just scream BUT FREEDOM AND STATIST AND COLLECTIVIST!!

        1. These bad effects… aside from the voting Democrat, please list them.

          1. …aside from the voting Democrat…

            Well other than that Mrs. Lincoln, how did you like the play?

            1. (mind you, it wouldn’t be much better, if at all, if they were voting Republican; that they support statist policies is the complaint, not necessarily which party they choose to do the lifting)

              1. (yes, it should go without saying that good old fashioned red blooded Americans also support the same statist policies; immigrants in general and Hispanic ones in particular still support statist polices in higher percentages in the aggregate)

                1. Honestly, if people want to stick with the “I don’t want to be importing cultural leftists” argument – despite inviting the whole ‘racist’ attacks – it has greater legitimacy than most of the bullshit anecdotal, counter-factual economic claims people make.

                  meaning, one can make fun of that argument – (I do) – but there’s not far one can go to really disarm it.

                  I’d take the logic farther, personally =

                  Import liberty minded individuals from countries like Iran, China, Cuba, Russia, North korea etc. People who wish to escape from under the thumb of oppressive regimes.

                  AND! we send all the progtards over there.

                  Prisoner swap.

                  I personally think this is a fucking awesome idea, but no one seems to listen.

                  1. Import liberty minded individuals from countries like Iran, China, Cuba, Russia, North korea etc. People who wish to escape from under the thumb of oppressive regimes.

                    AND! we send all the progtards over there.

                    Prisoner swap.

                    I am interested in your ideas and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

                    1. Come on! It IS a good idea!

              2. That’s the issue I have with these threads. People seem to scream “they?ll vote democrat!” as if the alternative is marginally better.

        2. It seems that whenever someone points out the bad real world effects of open borders, the default fall back is to just scream BUT FREEDOM AND STATIST AND COLLECTIVIST!!

          Exactly as it should be.

          Sandra Fluke thinks she sees bad real world effects to me not buying her contraception for her.

          Who gives a rat’s ass?

          OF COURSE when you have people protected against economic competition, when they’re no longer so protected they will suffer “real world effects”. So fucking what?

          I missed the part where I was supposed to care.

          When you lose an unearned benefit, that to me is cause for celebration. Not something there’s a burden on me to justify or explain.

          1. OF COURSE when you have people protected against economic competition, when they’re no longer so protected they will suffer “real world effects”. So fucking what?

            That’s somewhat unfair in that illegal immigrants are able to offer their labor on terms that nobody else can without risking criminal penalties; they are actually the ones with the unearned advantage on the labor market since they don’t come with any regulatory compliance costs or wage floor. Legal immigrants, obviously, are a different story.

            1. Whose fault is that?

              You could use the same argument to shut down Uber.

              1. You could use the same argument to shut down Uber.

                Uber is still subject to regulation, so not really.

                The fault is, of course, with the government, which was my point when you were blaming ostensibly government-coddled workers for opposing competition in the form of immigration. They might be less apt to oppose such competition if they were able to offer their labor on equal footing. You don’t see a lot of engineers or programmers pitching bitches about H1B visa candidates against whom they are in competition because the regulatory hoops one has to jump through to hire an H1B candidate are enormous and they aren’t able to avoid certain legal restrictions that their native-born competitors have to comply with. That’s an issue exclusive to illegal immigration. I’m actually kind of baffled why the Chamber and all of these businesses are clamoring for an amnesty when the entire competitive advantage of these workers is tied up in their extra-legal status.

                1. You don’t see a lot of engineers or programmers pitching bitches about H1B visa candidates

                  LOL

                  1. Couldn’t even be fucked to throw up an anecdote?

                    1. http://www.h1b.info/

                      Bitching about H1-B visas is almost as common online as people posting cute pictures of cats.

                      Claiming you don’t see people bitching about it is like claiming you don’t see anyone bitching about fracking or GMO’s.

                      “You know what I never see online? People complaining about getting stuck in the friendzone.” – PM

                    2. Claiming you don’t see people bitching about it is like claiming you don’t see anyone bitching about fracking or GMO’s.

                      You missed a couple of relevant words there:

                      You don’t see a lot of engineers or programmers pitching bitches about H1B visa candidates

                      The point being, the people in direct competition with H1B candidates tend not to be as anti-(illegal?) immigration as the low skilled workers in direct competition with illegal immigrants (higher income and education levels tend to increase support for immigration reform). Part of that is probably because the number of H1B visas doled out every year is relatively low by comparison to the number of illegal immigrants, but it’s also because the legal avenue doesn’t avail the immigrant of any regulatory advantage over anyone else – the people coming in on H1B’s aren’t taking scab wages, and certainly not skirting the minimum wage, or health care compliance, or tax withholding, or worker’s comp, etc etc.

            2. That’s somewhat unfair in that illegal immigrants are able to offer their labor on terms that nobody else can without risking criminal penalties; they are actually the ones with the unearned advantage on the labor market since they don’t come with any regulatory compliance costs or wage floor.

              OK… and wouldn’t amnesty immediately undo that?

          2. Yeah fluffy Fuck you that is why is a perfectly valid reason. But don’t come bitching to me when the other side does the same thing.

            I can play that game too. As far as I am concerned the US government is there to protect the interests of US citizens. You are never going to make me give a shit about Mexicans. They have a government that can worry about that. The Constitution was created for my freedom not theirs.

            So I really don’t give a fuck if they can’t move here or live here legally.

            So what we are left with is a screaming match with you saying “Freedom” and me saying “America”. It is not much of a debate.

            But you and reason need to be honest and admit that you consider the interests of Mexicans and pretty much anyone else in the world to be equal to that of Americans and that the American government has an equal duty to ensure the standard of living to Mexicans as it does to its own citizens.

            In fact, if the choice is between the standard of living of Americans or the freedom of movement of Mexicans, the freedom of the Mexicans wins.

            I have no doubt that is what you think. And that is one way to look at it and an honest one. But I suspect if open border advocates were ever honest, the political debate would end very quickly against them.

            1. But you and reason need to be honest and admit that you consider the interests of Mexicans and pretty much anyone else in the world to be equal to that of Americans and that the American government has an equal duty to ensure the standard of living to Mexicans as it does to its own citizens.

              I don’t think the American government has any duty whatsoever to maintain any person’s standard of living.

              It does have a duty to protect my liberty and property.

              That means that if I want to have a Mexican live on my property and pay me rent, the American government has a duty to allow me to do that.

              It also means that if I want to take MY money and use it to pay a Mexican to perform some job, the American government has a right to allow me to do that.

              The Constitution was created for my freedom not theirs.

              It’s my freedom that I’m talking about here.

              1. If you want to sponsor a Mexican you can. You can hire foreign workers. That is a sorry ass bait and switch on your part. We are talking about their ability to come here without anyone wanting to hire them first.

                If we were taking about just your freedom, you would be okay with a system where you could go to Mexico and hire people and bring them in. And no fucking way would you be happy with that. You will only be happy with their freedom to come here as they please.

                So no, it is not about your freedom. It is about their freedom. You are being disingenuous to claim otherwise.

              2. I don’t think the American government has any duty whatsoever to maintain any person’s standard of living.

                I didn’t say it was. But if the choice is between two policies, one of which makes the standard worse, it has a duty not to choose that policy.


                1. John|2.5.14 @ 12:20PM|#

                  “”…But if the choice is between two policies, one of which makes the standard [of living] worse [for SOME?], it has a duty not to choose that policy.”

                  I presume you also assume the corollary = that the policy which increases the standard of living FOR THE MOST is by default the most desirable?

                  Most data shows that immigration has substantially improved the standard of living for the widest range of economic groups in the US, primarily through reduced prices for a wide range of products/services, from food and housing, gardening, cleaning, foodservice, you name it.

                  http://www.nytimes.com/roomfor…..-standards

                  the negative impact has been to increase unemployment/wages among the *already lowest employed groups in the US* = HS dropouts, again

                  http://www.hamiltonproject.org…..pdf#page=7

                  That ‘as much as 5%’ wage reduction is among 12% or less of the population. The gains are among the 80%+.

      2. And do so with extra caps for emphasis.

        It is funny there HOSS. On even days open borders are the greatest thing ever for a country. On odd days, they are all about principle and the effects they have on real people are irrelevant.

        1. These bad effects… please list them.

          1. We have all over this thread. And you dismiss them as “anecdotes”.

            We get it sport, you think anyone who objects is the RACIST.

            1. “‘John|2.5.14 @ 11:53AM|#

              We have all over this thread…

              John|2.5.14 @ 11:54AM|#

              …we have all over this thread

              Wow, you keep saying that.

              Its amazing. Where is this “all over” stuff you keep mentioning?

              “”People point out that it hurts workers that are here””

              The specificity, it amazes with its convincing-ness.

              – Data shows ‘high levels’ of immigration has a negative effect on a specific narrow segment of the working population.

              high school dropouts.

              High levels of immigration are also broadly associated with LOWER UNEMPLOYMENT overall, and higher net wages for people with above-average education.

              but hey, we should really be focusing on wasting billions of dollars on futile enforcement measures which in fact have no effect whatsoever in reducing the thing they ostensibly exist to stop, all while infringing upon the rights of citizens, because we all so care about the fate of the HIGH SCHOOL DROPOUTS

              http://cis.org/ImmigrationImpactLaborMarket

              I’m sure you have many more really interesting arguments about how this immigration stuff is so horrible and bad that we missed, right?

              1. High levels of immigration are also broadly associated with LOWER UNEMPLOYMENT overall,

                What’s the cause and effect, though? Immigration drops during recessions. I fail to see how more workers somehow causes more employment.

                and higher net wages for people with above-average education.

                And lower net wages for those with below-average education…?

              2. High levels of immigration are also broadly associated with LOWER UNEMPLOYMENT overall, and higher net wages for people with above-average education.

                50% of the population is by definition “below average”; immigration does affect them. Your response can still be “so what?”, but don’t pretend those effects don’t exist.

                Also, the high school graduation rate nationwide is 78%. 22% is a large number; I think high school dropouts are a larger demographic group than you think. Here again, your response can still be “who cares?”.

                1. The point being, as you’ve now acknowledged, there are actual negative consequences for certain people of less restrictive immigration, and it’s understandable why they would act in their self interest, even if it results in bad policy or bad ideology.

                2. I wouldn’t say “Who cares”…

                  …. but when you do a net-net analysis of cost-benefit, a 2% increase in unemployment among the (for argument’s sake) ~10% who drop out of HS, inchange for a sustained +1% increase in GDP growth over a decade+, and an increase in wages for HS graduates (who’s gonna manage all those wetbacks?!), then I go, ‘SOLD’.

                  One reason I’d studiously avoid any ‘who cares’ claims is that ALL economic choices have winners and losers. Do you not realize that you and your damnable Pro-Loom party has nearly eliminated the jobs of millions of hand-spinners? THE TEXTILE WORKERS WILLS STARVE!

                  The economic data re: immigration tends to remind me of the Anti-GMO people (as well as the drug prohibitionists)…

                  … in that, the “Costs and harms” all tend to be
                  – extremely narrow,
                  – limited,
                  – and in many cases, entirely speculative
                  – and extremely expensive to attempt to ‘fix’

                  whereas the benefits are already
                  – widespread
                  – well demonstrated
                  – have long term sets providing statistical validity
                  – and ‘cost’ fairly little in the larger scheme. Unless, like Gay Marriage, you feel Telemundo is Destroying American Values.

                  but don’t let that stop anyone citing piles of anecdotal stuff about crime! Reconquista! family values! leprousy~!

                  1. One reason I’d studiously avoid any ‘who cares’ claims is that ALL economic choices have winners and losers.

                    That was rather the point I was getting at; a meta-analysis of the aggregate cost and benefit probably won’t be as persuasive to the people directly affected. So from their perspective, they do have “rational”, if not necessarily “valid” reasons for opposition. It all depends, as they say, on whose ox is being gored.

                    but don’t let that stop anyone citing piles of anecdotal stuff about crime! Reconquista! family values! leprousy~!

                    There’s valid complaints to be found there as well. There’s a reason they’d stick a dozen inoculations in your arm when they anglicized your name at Ellis Island. If you skip the legal entry process you also skip that type of screening. I’ve been told by many of our commentariat that isn’t a valid reason for denial of entry and not a valid use of government resources anyway, but still, it’s not a non-issue. And the whole reconquista thing is actually alive and well in Chicano studies departments the same way that black separatism is in African studies departments and Marxism is in sociology departments. Those people are batshit lunatics, but they do have tenure; it’s easy to dismiss them, but not a bad idea to keep one eye on them either. There’s no denying there’s a different cultural attitude toward assimilation now than there was in the past (and not just with respect to immigrants), for better or worse.

                    1. I’m not sure what you’re saying here other than repeating populist arguments I just mocked as baseless pandering.

                      Or are you say, “YES, FACTS!

                    2. sorry, that post broke.

                      …. this seems to be devolving from points about ‘facts’ into, ‘how do anecdotes best sell moar shitty immigration policy’

                      which is sort of not really the point.

                    3. …. this seems to be devolving from points about ‘facts’ into, ‘how do anecdotes best sell moar shitty immigration policy’

                      It started out with you calling anyone who suggested there were negative implications of unrestricted immigration racists and has devolved into you kinda sort of acknowledging that, indeed, there may be certain negative implications of unrestricted immigration for certain people, but they’re still racist for opposing it because they think illegal messicans might have bad hygiene or some shit. I should have quit with this, since it was really my only point in this particular tangent of the thread:

                      The point being, as you’ve now acknowledged, there are actual negative consequences for certain people of less restrictive immigration, and it’s understandable why they would act in their self interest, even if it results in bad policy or bad ideology.

                    4. “there are actual negative consequences for certain people of less restrictive immigration, and it’s understandable why they would act in their self interest, even if it results in bad policy or bad ideology.”

                      THIS was your ‘key point’?

                      So….

                      …ERGO, MOAR BORDER CHECKPOINTS? more funding for DHS? eVerify? BORDER WALL??

                      … I don’t get how you think an ‘argument’ so vague as to be indisputable is in any way something that endorses any particular policy AT ALL.

                      Since we’re in the ‘summarizing ourselves’ mood:

                      1 – You are not a racist.

                      2 – immigration is good for the economy

                      3 – our current policy is a huge fucking waste of money

                      4 – let’s stop blowing money on this dumb shit

                      6 – and reduce barriers to employment and bad incentives (a la the occupational licensing BS noted)

                      7 – PROFIT

            2. Note = the word racist has not been employed.

          2. Some of the bad effects:

            – Supply and demand should tell you that increased numbers of unskilled laborers will reduce wages for unskilled laborers. Thus, increased hardship and welfare expenditures for those at the bottom.

            – Decreased social cohesion caused by turning the US into a multicultural/multilingual country. This is not just a “nativist” fantasy, but shown in studies: there is less social trust in “diverse” communities. Even Mexican-Americans believe that their primary loyalty should be to Mexico.

            – Immigration of large numbers of people with non-libertarian beliefs is bad for libertarianism. Latin Americans tend to be fiscally liberal, socially conservative, and believers in big government. They believe that international law should trump the Constitution.

            1. “PapayaSF|2.5.14 @ 12:06PM|#

              Some of the bad effects:

              – Supply and demand should tell you that increased numbers of unskilled laborers will reduce wages for unskilled laborers…

              – Decreased social cohesion caused by turning the US into a multicultural/multilingual country.

              – Immigration of large numbers of people with non-libertarian beliefs is bad for libertarianism….

              Ok,

              1 economic claim
              1 cultural claim
              1 political claim

              on the first, most data shows the primary negative effect of ‘heightened’ immigration to be on unionized unskilled labor, and people without high school education. The data also shows positive net influence on GDP growth overall.

              If offered a trade between a greater economic benefit for a majority in exchange for negative impact on the least skilled, that’s a judgment call. Over the longer term, I’d make the case its worth it.

              As for the second two – I’d point to tons of research on second-generation assimilation rates. Yes, they are not consistent in different regions = but in toto, by gen2, the effect is enormous and dramatic. English spoken in household, identification with state of residence, cultural adoption of food, music, fashion, etc. I’ve done some research work on this myself, with CPG companies on purchasing behavior of 1st vs. 2nd gen immigrants

              – as for the third = this is where I think you’re stuck with the ‘know nothing’ label. This is exactly what they said about the Irish and the fucking Pope.

              1. as for the third = this is where I think you’re stuck with the ‘know nothing’ label. This is exactly what they said about the Irish and the fucking Pope.

                In point of fact though, is the country more or less libertarian now than before? Post-hoc for sure, but there may be a correlation; that might not have been a completely illegitimate criticism of the Irish or the fucking Pope.

                1. So, “the Know Nothings may have had a point”

                  Shrug. I don’t know mate, some dumb Irishman just dumped me here with you idiots. Don’t blame me.

                  I find this whole idea of =

                  “we must ensure to have an entirely unlibertarian notion of free movement of peoples to ensure the most libertarian nation possible”

                  … well, boring. Somehow the USA did sustain decades of immigration of all sorts of Human Scum like those damned irish, and we are what we are. You want to blame the micks, go ahead = my data shows it to be fucking idiotic leftist college kids, but hey, who’s keeping score anyway?

                  1. You want to blame the micks, go ahead

                    I’m somewhere around 1/2 Irish by lineage, I’m just saying, if that’s not a completely incorrect statement, then it’s not inherently a racist one either. It’s not like the micks didn’t spawn a lot of those kids that ended becoming idiotic college leftists. I think turning every stereotype in a racist thing is stupid. A lot of them don’t come about for no reason. That still doesn’t necessarily justify a restrictionist policy, but I don’t think it’s always a bad faith argument, that’s all.

                    1. The Irish were different. They spoke English, Ireland does not border the US, there was no revanchist movement with immigrant Irish claiming that part of the US was stolen from Ireland, and the Irish didn’t arrive by the tens of millions. Also, immigrants at time were assimilated, by choice and by official policy. Today, “multiculturalism” rules.

                    2. “‘PapayaSF|2.5.14 @ 2:30PM|#

                      The Irish were different.”

                      Congratulations! you’re the first person in history to have used this expression as *a compliment*

    2. Second, the numbers here aren’t wildly different from the numbers in Politico’s poll of adults this morning, which showed 60 percent support generally for tax hikes on the wealthy and 39 percent support among Republicans specifically.

      Buried the lede?

  15. “John|2.5.14 @ 11:48AM|#

    ON THE VALID REASONS FOR INCREASED RESTRICTION OF IMMIGRATION =

    “”you will just dismiss them as “invalid” because to you “invalid” means the same thing as “I don’t like them”.

    Try me.

    1. We have all over this thread and that is exactly what you have done. People point out that it hurts workers that are here and your response is “since when do anecdotes matter.” People point out that Mexicans love big government and you scream statist or something in all caps.

      All you have is your assertions and assumptions. That is nice for you there junior. Good to see you have something. But you never bother to explain why anyone should share them with you.

      1. The bullet points of wisdom are still missing.

  16. But Reason does itself and its argument no favors by pretending such people don’t exist or if they do they have no right to vote and act in their own self interests.

    Actually, yes, you do have no right to “vote and act in” your own economic best interest, if what you’re voting for is protectionism.

    It’s every bit as illegitimate to do that as it is to vote for, say, green energy subsidies when you own a green energy company.

    They’re equally scummy.

    So basically what John is saying here is that he’s mad at Reason for calling scumbags scumbags.

    “Damn you, Reason! Leave scumbags alone!”

    1. Actually, yes, you do have no right to “vote and act in” your own economic best interest, if what you’re voting for is protectionism.

      So we now are going to decide which of one’s personal interests are valid and people have a right to act on and which ones we don’t. How do you plan to do that?

      Should these people loose the vote? If their interests are invalid, why should they be allowed to vote? In fact, they probably shouldn’t be allowed to speak right?

      Good luck with that.

      1. So we now are going to decide which of one’s personal interests are valid and people have a right to act on and which ones we don’t. How do you plan to do that?

        The same way we always do it and the same way YOU would advocate doing it if we were talking about any other issue: by the protection of my constitutional liberties and my enumerated rights.

        There are people who think it would be in their personal interest if I could not buy a gun. How do we decide that’s not valid? Gee, gosh, I can’t possibly think of a way! You really stumped me, John!

        However in the world can we stop people for voting for gun control? Oh no! I can’t think of ANY WAY we could do that!

        1. So in other words you are just saying you don’t like them doing it. If their interests truely are invalid, they should not be able to act upon them.

          My interest in raping small children isn’t a valid interest. It is therefore okay to say I can’t do that.

          1. Yes, exactly.

            If their interests truely(sic) are invalid, they should not be able to act upon them.

            I would expect Reason to denounce them in terms as strong as those used for:

            1. Public school teachers demanding that charter schools be shut down

            2. Light bulb manufacturers demanding that it be made illegal to sell incandescent bulbs

            3. Taxi drivers demanding Uber be shut down

            Etc.

            And you applaud Reason in all of those situations.

            You never, ever, ever stand up and shout, “Stop, Reason! People have a right to vote for their economic interests! How dare you denounce them for doing so!”

            Pretty much the only time you do that is when Reason criticizes people who oppose immigration. Occasionally you do it for the socons, but you’ve cut down on that.

            I just don’t see how you can cheer along with Reason when they denounce people like #1 through #3, but all of a sudden you’re staunch advocate of economic democracy now – so much so that you can’t even understand how anyone could possibly object or possibly think they can find a valid way to discount any group’s presumptive right to use the state to advance its economic interests. It’s like you get this weird John Amnesia.

            1. [crickets]

  17. By not embracing the suicide of open borders, the GOP is committing suicide by NOT committing it.

    Right.

    Why is Reason so stupid and unserious on immigration?

    1. Because most libertarians aren’t smart enought to view a country as anything more than a giant job fair and can’t see anything past what some employer wants to pay.

  18. In any event, I would be perfectly happy allowing the borderites to have their little party, as long as I could be guaranteed that no non-libertarian means of enforcing the law and placating their concerns would be used.

    So no E-Verify, no Taxpayer Identification Number system, no interior border checkpoints, no citizenship paper demands, no questioning anyone’s citizenship status without probable cause.

    What happens to the enforcement regime then?

    Does it even matter if we agree on immigration in general when our current set of rules would already be impossible to enforce if we libertopianed our government?

    1. It would work fine. No one would be getting citizenship unless they came in legally. When they got arrested or did something wrong, they would get deported. And most of them would work for a few years and go home.

      I am not seeing a downside here.

      1. Then what the fuck are we arguing about?

        1. The idea that we have to let people in legally.

          I honestly don’t think the current system is that bad except that people have gotten so nuts about enforcement. Most of the illegals who come here just want to work and go home. let them.

          1. “John|2.5.14 @ 12:22PM|#

            I honestly don’t think the current system is that bad

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZZ8HKlMB_iE

            1. If we enforced immigration withing the bounds of the constitution as fluffy advocates, these things wouldn’t happen.

              If you want to get rid of the 100 mile constitution free zone and kill Everify, you will get no argument from me.

              1. “If we enforced immigration withing the bounds of the constitution as fluffy advocates, these things wouldn’t happen.”

                ‘then what are we arguing about’?

                No really= why is it then that ‘these things’ DO indeed appear to some kind of problem to you…

                …yet you are still of the view that the Status Quo is the best of all possible worlds? Is this Panglossian, or just hopelessness that any change at all will just be worse and worse and worse? (I guess that’s something like ‘nihilistic conservatism’ 🙂

              2. If we enforced immigration withing the bounds of the constitution as fluffy advocates

                WE ALREADY SPEND BILLIONS OF DOLLARS ON THIS SHIT.

          2. It’s sad to say, but John is right.

            Reducing enforcement and the concurrent costs in money and rights is actually politically conceivable, and is a whole lot better than the product likely to come out of Congress as it now looks. Just let the government look the other way like it did in the 1990’s to everyone’s great benefit.

            For actual immigration reform, amnesty would be an afterthought — the natural corollary of how to treat people the US would have let in under the new immigration rules — not the main goal.

            1. “MikeP|2.5.14 @ 12:37PM|#

              It’s sad to say, but John is right.

              Reducing enforcement and the concurrent costs in money and rights is actually politically conceivable, and is a whole lot better than the product likely to come out of Congress as it now looks

              Did John first disagree with my “Do Less” argument, then, only to restate it as his own view later on?

              AMAZING FEAT ACHIEVED

              1. John can speak for himself, but I don’t think his understanding is the issue, but your reading of the comments.

                From what I see – and mostly agree with, there are two opinions here, which are not mutually exclusive:

                One is is that Reason, and others here, ignores real potential negatives of open border type policy, and do so exactly like the liberals shut down other arguments – by yelling racist or jigngoism at every argument against it. Specifically the argument that importing mass statist voters might be bad.

                Two the current status quo restricts immigration to such an indefeasiblely small number that we now have 11 million immigrants. A partial solution to that problem is to make it much easier to get into the US and work through legal means, though with some background checks and what not for obvious reasons.

                There is no contradiction there – only misunderstandings.

  19. Tightening the border is only part of it

    Have you recently crossed a border, and seen what a civil rights free zone they’ve become? Last thing I want is more asshole paramilitary jerks detaining me at a border checkpoint and demanding to search my vehicle without probable cause, North or South, or enacting checkpoints with drug sniffing dogs manufacturing probable cause, or more TSA checkpoints.

    All of these happened to me recently, and it was uniformly appalling. I want to get rid of all that crap, not tighten it.

    1. The renewed efforts at enforcement have become a menace. But the political reality is such that they will come with any amnesty package.

      Of course they won’t work and will just make life hard on everyone else. So in return for amnesty we will see our civil rights further erode.

      Fuck it. Leaves things as they are. It isn’t perfect, but it could be a lot worse.

  20. Exactly. It’s all about the incentives. You can have a generous welfare state, or you can have open borders. But you can’t have both.

    1. Yes, you can have both. The only way to keep the welfare system afloat is to have new working people come into the country to contribute to the system through their tax dollars.

      That doesn’t mean the welfare state is a good thing or sustainable, but it is an economic fallacy to think that the infusion of new workers is in direct conflict with a welfare system. It is not, at least from an Economics standpoint.

      1. The only way to keep the welfare system afloat is to have new working people come into the country to contribute to the system through their tax dollars.

        This begs the question though. In an open borders scenario you’re likely going to have a different distribution of makers vs takers than you do under our present system where it’s next to impossible to immigrate legally without a MS in a STEM field, and where legal immigrants are prohibited from receiving most forms of welfare anyway.

        1. For the sake of discussion, can we drop the ‘open borders’ term?

          Did ‘decriminalizing pot’ result in the wild-west freedoms of dope smoking in church and growing it in front yards? No one arguing in favor of reducing immigration *restrictions* has any utopian ideal of ‘zero control’.

          I mean, ya still gotta stop the lepers.

          also, the assumption that any change to the ‘false-security’ system we have in place results in some massive change to the balance of natives/immigrants is specious. Its sort of like saying, ‘if we stopped taking our shoes off at airpoints, the number of shoebombers will therefore skyrocket”

          again = the vast majority of ‘illegals’ in this country simply overstay visas. Our system is largely a paperwork violation, and paperwork solution. The first ‘reform’ is simply to acknowledge the status quo. That doesn’t mean we’ve suddenly dropped the gates and allowed Tijuana to annex San Diego.

          1. For the sake of discussion, can we drop the ‘open borders’ term?

            This particular digression started with this statement:

            Exactly. It’s all about the incentives. You can have a generous welfare state, or you can have open borders. But you can’t have both.

            Followed by this:

            Yes, you can have both.

            So it’s a discussion of the theoretical possibility, not necessarily a reference to anything making its way through the halls of congress.

            No one arguing in favor of reducing immigration *restrictions* has any utopian ideal of ‘zero control’.

            … You clearly haven’t been reading the same Reason immigration threads I have. Epi, in particular, will quickly disabuse you of that notion.

            again = the vast majority of ‘illegals’ in this country simply overstay visas.

            Maybe a quibble, but it’s not the “vast majority”. Estimated somewhere between 40% and 45% though. There literally isn’t a system to track visa overstays (in the era of NSA metadata collection, no less), so the actual number may be higher or lower.

        2. Open borders should be the norm. If you have open borders then you get to process everyone. Get it? Everyone.
          If some fuck is in the desert, then guess what?

  21. since George W. Bush increased spending on food stamps, disability claims, and unfunded extensions of long-term unemployment benefits.

    Obama Lite Slightly Less Heavy.

  22. As a complete side note to this very edu-taining tete-a-tete about a crucial national issue…

    … one of my principal bitch-complaints about Immigration as it is currently being resurrected as a NATIONAL PANIC DO SOMETHING!-issue is the fact that, like Abortion or Gay Marriage, its largely an issue that Pols whip out from time to time to simply rally their bases in an election year, and has little to do with any actual sensible national policy goals or anything in the national interest.

    its pure political catnip to get people into a screaming frothing tizzy and then VOTE TEAM SOMETHING OR ELSE!!

    Don’t believe me? you haven’t been reading this thread.

    1. its largely an issue that Pols whip out from time to time to simply rally their bases in an election year

      I’m not entirely sure I agree with this, since the Republican leadership has actually ended up shelving its comprehensive immigration reform proposals the last few times out because they pissed off their base, not energized them. Bush wanted his immigration plan in the worst way in 2006-ish and couldn’t get it past his own party because the people back home wanted to string them up.

      1. No = we’re actually on the same page.

        The 2006 plan was an example of the GOP trying to use immigration initially as something to motivate and consolidate the base (conflated with terrorism fears, which was oh so au courant at the time) but which blew up in their face because *it was far too effective* = they’d created Frankenstein’s monster by getting people thinking along lines *far more extreme than they actually wanted to go*. When the McCain-Kennedy bill was finally aired to the public it was completely unacceptable to the GOP base because *it made way too much sense*.

        Now the Dems want to use that element against them in these mid-terms- force the GOP into a corner taking a ‘strong stand’ against immigration to gratify their base, but distancing anyone ‘moderate’ from leaving the TEAM BLUE fold.

        all to the purpose of limiting the Obamacare damage.

        This is just my read. in fact I think ALL of the issues Dems want to bring to the forefront in 2014 are entirely “wedge issues” like this – things that discriminate people strongly on either side, and prevent TEAM dissolution.

  23. Why the fuck do the nativists and borderites even come to these threads? They get their stupid fallacies broken every time and every time they whip them out for the next thread. They are totally immune to logic and facts and that’s why they are going to be sent to political oblivion. The GOP is going to leave these assholes behind for its own survival. Happened in Canada and happened in Texas. Can’t wait for the tears.

    1. Jesus man, you’re nuts! What, next you’ll suggest they stop insisting on Equal Time for creationism in the classroom, or allowing Sex Ed to mention the Gay, or stop insisting on *essential* defense programs like the JSF, or pandering to Small Government weirdos, then doing the *right thing* and handing out a trillion dollars to Medicare recipients, because old people vote! What, do you want to DESTROY the GOP or something?

  24. Immigration reform will never work. We can’t even keep Justin Bieber out of this country!

    1. I welcome foreigners pissing on the Alamo. We have freedom of speech here. Pissing is a form of free speech.

      1. The same founding fathers who wrote “Freedom of Speech” into the first amendment intended it to be STRICTLY POLITICAL SPEECH. Not “freedom of expression”. There IS a difference!

        The founders wrote obscenity laws for example, and no one challenged them with the First Amendment until 200 years later.

        There also is no separation of Church and State. In fact, state religions existed in the USA in many states. Connecticut and Massachusetts had an established state church until 1818 and 1833 for example.

        The First Amendment only prohibited Congress from making an established state religion, not the states.

        Most conservatives/libertarian are amazingly uninformed about this. It almost seems like a conspiracy to keep this out of our textbooks (perhaps to prevent moralists from coming out of the woodwork).

        But even if you want to hold up Thomas Jefferson’s letters about “separation of church and state” (which are NOT part of the Constitution) keep in mind he’s a religious extremist by libertarian’s standards: he was for castrating homosexuals for example.

  25. Because a long and high border fence will keep Chinese and Indian immigrants out. Fuck the GOP. And don’t read this that I don’t accept Chinese and Indian immigrants anymore than I accept Mexicans or any other immigrants.
    I welcome all. Maybe because I’m not part Cherokee.

  26. Mindless drivel.

    There has not yet been a single Republic that has ever cut welfare without being FORCED to, by an economic crisis.

    The idea of opening the floodgates to the socialist hellholes around the world as some sort of solution to welfare is beyond idiotic.

    Even supposing some sort of “grand bargain” where welfare is rolled back in exchange for allowing immigration, the immigrants this column is suggesting we welcome would instantly reverse that law. They would vote to expand welfare.

    And we don’t need any more immigrants, there are a limited number of jobs available to low-skilled workers. Rolling back welfare is impossible (unless we become a dictatorship or monarchy) because 50% of people are ON benefits and will never vote to remove them.

    The real truth is the GOP needs to get out of denial. It is in a demographic death spiral and there is NOTHING that can be done about it at the Federal level.

    I just wonder if they will file for an amicable divorce before the cornered elephant and jackass (dems) go violent. Will the nation divorce, or will blind patriotism lead the GOP to fight violently to the bitter end trying to “restore the Republic” and the “vision of the Founders” (the US “founding cult”).

  27. Nick does know, does he not, the Winthrop’s City on a Hill had very strict admission requirements and banishment was very common.

    Also, there is more to a culture than IQ and free trade. It is not surprising that John Yoo, a first generation Korean, wrote Bush’s torture memos. Notice who are the most willing and vocal of the big government shills in the law, especially at Yale and among Obama’s US Attorneys.

  28. I don’t think _any_ immigration reform is needed. Secure the borders, then and only then discuss it.

    As to the Republican Party: I think a lot of voters are like me. If the Republican Party does this, I will stop cold turkey supporting that Party. No matter who runs, no matter the issues, no matter anything. I won’t vote for _anyone_ that has an (R) after his name, even if I love the guy running for Congress.

    I would love to see some prominent Republican leave the Party and start a new one. Ideally, it will be someone that can win reelection just because of who he is. The Party’s delegation in both Houses ought to tell the Republicans: we will caucus with you now; but when (note I did not say if) we are larger than you, we expect _you_ to caucus with _us_.

    I fully expect the Republican Party to dwindle to insignificance.

  29. If you meet anybody from India ask him “What is Your Caste?” If he answers it, then you’re doomed. Because he has already injected Cancer into your society. Caste is like Cancer. It cannot be Cured. It has to be Cut-off.
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/…..countries/

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