What Would Reagan Do About Refugees?

The Gipper handled several influxes of asylum-seekers greater than the trickle of Syrians who have come to America so far


Commie. ||| The Immoral Minority
The Immoral Minority

The year before Ronald Reagan was inaugurated, the United States took in 207,000 refugees, a number that hasn't been topped since. A big chunk of that came from the Mariel boatlift (as Jesse Walker wrote about yesterday), but that era was also marked by massive influxes from Southeast Asia (particularly Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos), plus smaller jolts from war-torn Central America and revolutionary Iran. To the extent that the platforms of both the Republican Party and Democratic Party talked about immigration in 1980 and 1984, it was mostly about refugees.

We already know that Reagan's views on illegal immigration do not resemble those of the modern GOP; so what about on refugees? Yup, pretty much the same thing.

Here is President Reagan's Statement on United States Immigration and Refugee Policy from July 30, 1981. Some excerpts:

Our nation is a nation of immigrants. More than any other country, our strength comes from our own immigrant heritage and our capacity to welcome those from other lands. No free and prosperous nation can by itself accommodate all those who seek a better life or flee persecution. We must share this responsibility with other countries. […]

• We shall continue America's tradition as a land that welcomes peoples from other countries. We shall also, with other countries, continue to share in the responsibility of welcoming and resettling those who flee oppression.

• At the same time, we must ensure adequate legal authority to establish control over immigration: to enable us, when sudden influxes of foreigners occur, to decide to whom we grant the status of refugee or asylee; to improve our border control; to expedite (consistent with fair procedures and our Constitution) return of those coming here illegally; to strengthen enforcement of our fair labor standards and laws; and to penalize those who would knowingly encourage violation of our laws. The steps we take to further these objectives, however, must also be consistent with our values of individual privacy and freedom. […]

• We shall strive to distribute fairly, among the various localities of this country, the impacts of our national immigration and refugee policy[.] […]

• We shall seek new ways to integrate refugees into our society without nurturing their dependence on welfare.

• Finally, we recognize that immigration and refugee problems require international solutions. We will seek greater international cooperation in the resettlement of refugees and, in the Caribbean Basin, international cooperation to assist accelerated economic development to reduce motivations for illegal immigration.

Immigration and refugee policy is an important part of our past and fundamental to our national interest. With the help of the Congress and the American people, we will work towards a new and realistic immigration policy, a policy that will be fair to our own citizens while it opens the door of opportunity for those who seek a new life in America.

There's plenty of other stuff of interest there (such as: "Illegal immigrants in considerable numbers have become productive members of our society and are a basic part of our work force. Those who have established equities in the United States should be recognized and accorded legal status"). Whole thing worth a read.

NEXT: Candidates Court the Fringe

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  1. Facebook Derp of the Day: If Reagan were President ISIS would be WASWAS

    1. This sentiment stems from a belief that political leadership of that era wouldn’t have exhibited any substantial hesitation in engaging in open warfare with ISIS in its own territory.

      1. Oh Yeah? Reagan would have shown them! He have sent over the Marines to Lebanon and….

        uh, never mind.

        1. I never said I shared that sentiment.

          1. Wasn’t meant as a slam on you, rather anyone who still believes “sending troops” is a panacea

            1. You know who else “sent in troops”….

              1. The rockettes?

              2. Hedley Lamarr?

        2. at least Reagan would send them in or remove them not this half in half out shit that Obumbles is doing.

  2. Let’s dig up his body, bronze it like a pair of baby shoes, and put it on permanent display.

    1. +1 VI Lenin’s waxy corpse

  3. Who cares what Reagan would do? His presidency was from before I was even born. I seriously do not get you older folks obsession with the guy.

    1. It’s a way to appeal to older conservatives. WWJD? or WWRD?

    2. Get off my lawn, Illocust!

      1. Stop that, now, as a millenial, Illocust is the only one here who can let us know when the libertarian moment actually arrives.

        1. She can do that from OFF MY LAWN.

          (Full disclosure: by some measures, i too am a millennial, though one old enough to remember the end of the Reagan presidency).

          1. I think I fall into that void where I’m almost a boomer, but not quite. I think it is sometimes referred to as Generation Jones, whatever the hell that means.

          2. Illy is a chick?

            1. If you can’t tell, does it matter?

              1. That’s exactly what Episiarch said to me before he turned the lights off.

            2. Apparently, so check your privilege before posting, Tonio.

            3. Yep, female parts and everything.

              1. I believe that around here, “female parts” are irrelevant. The only real question is whether you are XX.

                  1. XXXO to you, too!

                    1. Why there are no female libertarians.

              2. Illy for President 2016 – She has lady parts!

                1. Not old enough

              3. Go on…

          3. My first political memory was a fellow five year old girl saying she wouldn’t vote for Bush because a plant couldn’t be president. Since then I haven’t really noticed much improvement in rationalizations for voting.

            1. It’s quite apparent to me, that a majority of the voting public do not evolve beyond the point of that 5 year old girl. Take for instance, all of the Trump supporters.


                1. I don’t hate America. I just want to put wiminz and childins back into chains. I mean specifically to work in my monocle factory. But this makes me a good libertarian and that’s what’s important.

              2. Trump pisses off all the right people!!! Woo!

                /H&R three weeks ago

                Carson pisses off all the right people!!! Woo!

                /H&R two weeks ago

                I can’t stop jacking off in joy at all those dead Frenchies!!! Woo!

                /H&R this week

                But what will next week bring? Cruzmania? Rubiorubella? Tune in and see…

                1. I can’t stop jacking off in joy at all those dead Frenchies!!! Woo!

                  What I do with my Thursdays while wearing a maid apron and a bib is none of your damn business, Sug.

            2. My son was about 5 for Bush the Lesser, Term 1. He came home from school and said, “They told me George Bush eats babies!”

              I did not disabuse him of that notion…..


    3. See, the reason you don’t understand, grasshopper, is that you also were not alive when Jimmah Carter was president. If you would have been, then you wouldn’t need to ponder about why Reagan was such a welcome sight as POTUS.

      1. While Carter was president homebrewing became legal, and several industries like trucking and commercial flight were deregulated. An argument could be made that he was the most libertarian president in the living memory. Reagan lowered taxes, sure. But the overall size of government as well as the enforcement of victimless crime skyrocketed under his reign. He talked a good talk on liberty, but his actions didn’t always jive with his words.

        1. The thing that really annoyed me about Carter is that he was just such a Sad Sack like character. It got to where I couldn’t even stand the sight of him or his voice, like I am now with Obama.

          1. For me, the primary difference was Reagan projected an optimism that was a welcome relief after Carter’s pessimism-disguised-as-realism. I’m sure that’s why he was elected. I don’t know who I voted for other than neither of them, but it was obvious Reagan would win.

            1. Carter’s pessimism-disguised-as-realism

              You said it better than I did, but that’s what I meant when I called him Sad Sack.

              1. Carter would appreciate the folksiness of your phrasing.

              2. You should have added Sweater for better alliteration. Maybe that sums it up — he kept warm by wearing sweaters and accepting limited energy, Reagan said Drill!

            2. That’s how I explain the 1980 election to students: here’s Reagan who lays out policies that he says will restore America. Here’s Carter whose basic position is that we now live in a world with limitations that can’t be overcome. Even if you have doubts about Reagan, at least he’s giving you some hope.

              1. Reagan defeated the Soviet Union. If we instead had 8 more years of Democrats we’d still be subsidizing it.

                1. My assessment is that they were in the process of collapsing anyhow, Regan just nudged them past the tipping point.

                  1. I think they would have nudged faster if Reagan had instead followed Carter’s example and freed more markets. Planned economies are miserable at having free, flexible, and fast growing economies; releasing ours from at least some of its chains would have stressed the Soviet economy even more. Especially tripling the national debt did us no favors, and he was the first President since WW II to not continue paying off the national debt.

                    1. he was the first President since WW II to not continue paying off the national debt.

                      The US national debt hasn’t gone down year over year since 1957. Under Reagan, as under all previous presidents, we retired older debt for newer debt (“paying off” the older debt, in a sense), but if you’re looking for actually “paying off” the national debt as in reducing it, you have to go to back to Ike.

          2. I was too young to pay attention to things like that when he was president.

            1. I have vague memories of Carter and Obama absolutely brings them back – esp. when it comes to foreign policy.

        2. Yeah, Carter was really not a terrible president policy-wise. He was just a lousy politician and a bit of a downer.

          1. except for that whole Iran thing. carter was great sarc

            1. Most of the hostages were at Reagan’s inauguration. Which meant that their release was negotiated *by the Carter administration.*

        3. He also created the department of energy. Maintained some level of oil and gas price controls. Tried to institute universal health insurance. Split health, education, and welfare into education and HHS. Created the CRA (that certainly had no long term effects). Created the synfuels corp and started the green energy gravy train.

          And he was just a putz.

        4. An argument could be made that he was the most libertarian president in the living memory.

          The whole federally mandated 55 mph speed limit thing was VERY libertarian.

          1. Tallest midget, etc.

          2. Yeah, deregging airlines and homebrew has to be taken in context.

            1. I believe deregging the airlines and the railroads was Reagan

              1. Airlines was definitely Carter.

                1. Railroads was, too.

                  1. But in fairness, it was sort of an “only Nixon could go to China” thing. No one suspected Carter of being involved in a corporate conspiracy to buy the government and rape the Working Man, so he could enact reforms to industries whose regulatory burdens had reached the point of universally recognized ridiculousness.

                    Reagan politically could not have done those things, because he would have been accused of trying to enrich corporate Amerikkka off the sweat of the working poor.

          3. 55 mph speed limit was courtesy of Nixon.

    4. While not as bad as Kennedy commiseraters, it’s pretty bad.

    5. Who cares what Reagan would do?

      I was a child when Regan was president and remember it pretty well, but this is strange to me too.

      You know what’s kind of an awesome though? Absolutely nobody ever gives a flying fuck about what Clinton theoretically would do.

      Absolutely. Nobody.

      1. Clinton would conduct periodic strafing runs and rely on Russian troops.

        Not an entirely bad idea.

        1. With the occasional Chinese embassy blown to smithereens.

        2. Clinton would bake a poll every 3 hours to decide what his opinion was.

    6. YARRR! I was alive for a couple years of his presidency. Those were the good times. Stress-free, pre-verbal, constant supply of milk. Let’s go back to that.

  4. And how many of those refugees were members of a religion that dislikes Jews and gays and believes it is destined to take over the world, by violence if necessary? How many held explicitly anti-libertarian beliefs? How many came from low-trust, clannish, inbred (literally) cultures with a bad track record of assimilation?

    It was just the other day that Reason was mocking the idea that refugees could be terrorists. Oops:

    Nearly SEVENTY are arrested in America over ISIS plots – and they include refugees who had been given safe haven but ‘turned to terror’

    1. To be fair, I’m sure a great many Latin American and Asian immigrants of that era were similarly retarded in moral and cultural terms.

      1. Yeah, right.

        The real crux of the problem is that refugees during Regan’s time didn’t come from a people and a religion that values killing everyone who believes differently from them.

        Islam is the problem.

        1. My observation and the problematic nature of Islam aren’t mutually exclusive. I have absolutely no sympathy for Islamist apologism.

        2. The more I think about it the more I am starting to believe that Islam isn’t the cause. It’s the outlet. The people who are doing this terrorism shit didn’t start off as normal people who were “radicalized.” They are people who were picked on in high school or whatever, and Islamic terrorism is the outlet for their frustration with the world. At least that’s what I’ve been thinking lately. I may be wrong. Whatever.

          1. I think the flaw there is that in the region where this originates these people are normal. I think brainwashed, not bullied.

            1. I don’t know that I’d go so far as to say they are normal.

              Of course, I’ve never been to those places, so I can’t say for sure what normal is there. But I would imagine that like most places, normal people are just trying to keep their families safe and fed before anyting else.

          2. Maybe. Doesn’t really matter.

            If you are looking to get your jihad on, do you follow the guy who launched a religion by conquest, or the guy who got martyred?

          3. sarc, I hear ya.

            The issue I have in the immediate term is that lots of people are frustrated and angry, but it seems to be mostly Muslims who use indiscriminate slaughter as an outlet.

            Now, native-grown Muslims may have more to be frustrated about because of the (Muslim) societies they grew up in, but that just begs the question of why Muslim societies produce so much frustration.

            And, of course, there’s the homegrown Muslim terrorists who didn’t grow up in Muslim societies, but get their jihad on anyway.

            I’m thinking Islam as a variable keeps coming out at the top of the list.

            1. Seems that through history there have been ideologies that tapped into something dark in people, with radical Islam being the one in our time. If it was to suddenly disappear, something would take its place eventually.

            2. I don’t think it’s anything more complicated than the fact that three centuries ago, Islam was the dominant religion of three of the world’s four dominant powers (Ottoman, Persian, Mughal, Chinese). Three of those four empires collapsed over the course of the19th century.

              The violence and distress in the MENA region of today is the direct result of the collapse of the Ottoman Empire.

              One would not point to the pervasive violence in 6th century Europe as indicative of a fundamental problem with Christianity. Same thing here.

        3. I’m glad we’ve gotten to the point of simply saying that all 1.6 billion people value killing those who don’t agree with them. It gives the accusation of bigotry some oomph.

          1. No, no. It’s up to some cranky Americans to determine the correct interpretation of the Koran and to tell stupid Muslims what they actually believe.

            I’m not sure who is more annoying, the people who claim that Islam is just great, not violent at all and just misunderstood, or those who insist that nearly all Muslims are irredeemable savages.

            Some people like to accuse me of equivocating all the time. But the fact is that reality usually is somewhere in the messy middle.

    2. Many of those SE Asian refugees were Catholics and that religion is anti-gay and at the time Catholic support for the jews was notional at best. So that’s not the best example you could have come up with. The were also anti-communist which isn’t libertarian, but was at least a start.

      1. I remember plenty of talk that (a) the refugees fleeing communism should stay at home and fight communism, and (b) who knows how many refugees are fifth column fake refugees who would infiltrate and undermine the US government?

        Nothing has changed except the labels. It’s all still hogwash used to rationalize bigotry, nationalism, and fascism in general.

        1. Well, that and the actual explosions in Europe.

          1. And Communist put-downs in Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and Poland were chopped liver?

            1. Not sure the point. We know that ISIS is using the refugees as a smokescreen for jihadist fighters. I am unclear on what fraction of them would have been willing to swim across the pacific.

              Much like I don’t *think* Mexican coyotes are smuggling terrorists. It’s simply too unpleasant, and the jihadists have better options.

              If you’re telling me that it was known that the viet cong were trying to take the fight to the US by sending fighters out with the South Vietnamese refugees, then that would have been a good reason to decline them.

              The real problem here seems to be the status of Syria as a failed state with no reliable records, and our unwillingness to put the refugees in gitmo while we sort them out.

              I have no idea what the process was in the ’60s.

              Looking at the current state of the Democratic Party, I think we should have been a bit stricter in our importation of communist sympathies, whether or not in the form of refugees.

              1. Comparing the refugee issue in Europe to that which America would face is completely inappropriate. Europe has boatloads of unknown refugees showing up on their shores every day. Meanwhile, the US is half a world away, meaning that instead of showing up off Miami, the refugees we would be accepting would undergo a long, arduous vetting process before setting foot on US soil. Even if this process is imperfect, why would a terrorist go through all this work when they could simply apply for a tourist or student visa and do a far simpler, far less intensive interview?

  5. Sigh. Matt, when commenters demanded more illustrative photos of men, we were specific: they should be swarthy, and preferably shirtless. Not former US presidents.

    Commenters demand action! More swarthy, shirtless men now!

    1. –looks for some Putin photos to post—

      1. Not swarthy. Sorry.

    2. If you can’t masturbate to America’s God-Grandpa, I doubt you can really masturabte at all.

      1. I always wondered what ‘trickle-down economics’ meant.

        1. Bukkakeconomics

          1. starring Jack Kemp.

          2. Anyone? Anyone? Something-a-k-e economics. Bukkake economics.

      1. Kristen would.

      2. God damn you.

    3. Can we compromise with a swarthy, shirtless Reagan?

      1. That’s not a bad start.

      2. How about a guy who recently portrayed Reagan?

    4. Can’t help you with that, Niki, but here’s a manless, swarthy shirt.

      1. +1 Well done.

    5. You forgot glistening, Nikki and engaged in vaguely homoerotic athletic pursuits.

      1. So timely, jesse. They’re even in Greece!

        1. Huh?

          *takes hand out of pants*

          Yeah, totally intentional commentary on current cultural trends!

          *puts hand back in pants*

  6. ? We shall seek new ways to integrate refugees into our society without nurturing their dependence on welfare.

    Can we actually get on this?

    1. No. Next question.

    2. Why would politicians agree to such a system? It gains them no benefit personally.

      1. How so, though? The refugees aren’t voters. It might make them look good to bleeding heart liberals, but then welcoming refugees without welfare might appeal to more moderate people who aren’t sold on refugees/immigration.

        1. More welfare = more welfare administration = more D voters.

    3. Also, why do you hate widows and orphans?

      1. He doesn’t hate widows and orphans; he’s just terrified of them.

      2. They’re not sexy enough?

        1. Orphans are DAMN sexy!

        2. I beg to differ. This is one terrorist’s widow that is damn sexy.

          1. Dude, she takes off that bra, her knees are in mortal danger.

          2. Did you just call Chris Kyle a terrorist?

            1. Yes, I was very proud of that reference.

              1. And . . . it makes you the second worst, right behind Nikki. Well played.

                1. *tears up*

                  Thank you, RC.

  7. OT

    City College of San Fran reconsidering it’s gun free policy on campus.

    But only for the campus police. HAHAHAHA

    “What they mean by gun free is that the police don’t have guns. It doesn’t mean that on a daily basis people aren’t bringing guns to these campuses,” said former CCSF Police Chief Carl Koehler.

    1. San Francisco exists in its own peculiar reality, where sanity is uncommon.

      1. Someone has to give Seattle a run for their money.

      2. I was in San Francisco a couple of weeks ago, but only for a few minutes. I accidentally took the Bay Bridge into downtown instead of the San Mateo Bridge on my way to Burlingame where I stayed with family and friends. That few minutes downtown was enough to remind me why, after a number of visits over the last 30 years, I am not a fan of Ess Eff. However, I really enjoyed shopping and dining in downtown Burlingame and can’t wait to go back. Nice little town.

  8. Very much on topic: Bruce Campbell was surprisingly good as Reagan in last week’s Fargo. I originally thought the casting choice was bizarre and would rest on the gimmick of, “Hey, it’s Bruce Campbell!” But he was great.

    1. Bruce Campbell is a god. I wonder what his opinion of the refugee crisis is?

      1. His opinion is the correct opinion.

    2. Has this season been good? I really enjoyed season 1 but haven’t gotten started on this one yet.

      1. I think it has been even better.

      2. Better than the first season, imo, but not as good as Peaky Blinders.

        1. Cillian Murphy is supposed to be pretty great in that. I’ve got a list of about 150 shows to watch, along with 1,000 movies (and add to my library — I collect everything on Blu-ray, or DVD). Worth a boxset purchase?

          1. Netflix has it streaming. Murphy does a very convincing cold, hard stare. I like that in a man.

            1. There is something really creepy about light blue eyes and dark hair

              1. There is something really creepy sexy about light blue eyes and dark hair


                1. I guess they’re not necessarily mutually exclusive

                2. Only when it’s paired with emphysema from chain smoking.

                3. Yeah, no kidding. Wait – we’re still talking about Cillian Murphy here, right? An adult?

                  1. That was for OMWC

        2. Cillian Murphy is supposed to be pretty great in that. I’ve got a list of about 150 shows to watch, along with 1,000 movies (and add to my library — I collect everything on Blu-ray, or DVD). Worth a boxset purchase?

        3. I would say on par with the first season. Some bits are better, but the weird/surreal factor is getting a little out of hand, as well. Its like David Lynch spunked on the script or something, and the “willing suspension” thing gets a little shaky for me at times.

      3. It probably is a better show than the first season, and the 70s style is a lot of fun. But it’s different than the first season.

    3. Speaking of which has anyone watched his new show?

  9. What complete Bullshit. Did Reagan tell Matt this through a Ouija Board?

    Reagan got rolled on an Amnesty deal with the Dems. It was supposed to be a one-time deal and better border security was promised. Reagan admitted later that is was a bad deal and the Dems reneged on their side of the bargain.

    Reagan wanting to PAY tens of thousands of dollars per person to import Muslims from the Middle East – I don’t think so.

    1. All of the open borders bullshit yesterday just buttressed the case against it because they were arguing for something that isnt ‘open borders’ or pro freedom of movement.

      This isnt immigration. This is a government program to move people en mass, people we really don’t know much about, into a culture that is completely alien to theirs on the tax payer’s dime. It is insane.

      1. Progressives have this illusion that they can someone change anyone into themselves just by showing some empathy, even though it’s mostly fake empathy. It’s how they conjured up Arab Spring in their collective minds. They truly do not understand human nature. They also think all of these people will eventually not only turn into them but also vote the way they do once they are citizens. They talk about multiculturalism, but what they really want is to welcome all of these people into the Borg. Everyone sympathizes them, after all, except straight white males, who are evil incarnate. Radical Islamists are really just trying to be liberals, they’re just misunderstood and straight white males and global warming are causing them to act violently when they’re really just trying to be good liberals.

        1. That’s the problem with right-thinkers. What they believe is right, therefore they just need a little time to explain right-think and then the audience will also become right-thinkers. Because they’re right. Anyone could see that if they just stopped to think for a second.

        2. Typical woman-thought. “He needs me. I can change him.”

        3. I think its part of the Progressive faith in symbols.

          Just like they believe that if you give someone a college degree and a house, they become middle class. When actually, what you’ve got is somebody in a middle class costume. Its the culture, work habits, etc. that make you middle class, not the outward trappings.

          Here, they believe that if you give someone the accoutrements of a civilized Westerner, they will become a civilized Westerner.

    2. Drake: exactly right.

  10. There’s something unseemly about cherry picking quotes and policies of someone who is generally pilloried. Hell, justifying something based on who backs it is unseemly period. But it really rankles when someone quotes Obama on campus free speech or Reagan on immigration, as if that somehow buttresses your case, when just about everything else about them is rejected as statist and wrong.

    Stop it, Matt and Nick. It’s so unseemly.

    1. There’s something unseemly about cherry picking quotes and policies of someone who is generally pilloried.

      “I agree.” – Jesus and/or Muhammad

  11. Too bad we can’t just get more Cambodians. Quite a few Cambodian refugees came to my town in the 80s and they are pretty much all very friendly, hard working and they throw the best parties.

    1. I’ve had the same experience with anti-communist Russians — that is, Russian that fled the Soviet Union and the early Russian Federation specifically for political reasons.

      1. The Russian crew I hung out with in the mid 90s were fucking lunatics. Kids of Soviet era mid level military leadership that kept their standing with the “new” military. They loved their coke and heroin. I just loved skiing and these SOBs would get me from Denver to Vail in under 90 minutes in their Mustang. One is in jail and the others got deported. I fucking love me some post Soviet Russians.

      2. We always used to make the Russian kid be the Soviet Union in Axis and Allies.

        1. Kids are the best.

    2. I for one believe we should import refugees from countries that have looser social mores.

    3. Same here, + Laotians.

    4. We had the Vietnamese where I was growing up. Model citizens.

      In Wisconsin, they got a whole bunch of Hmong. They weren’t assimilating well, even 30 years later.

      1. One of my best friend’s dad was the judge who presided over the trial of the Hmong in Wisconsin who killed all of those deer hunters (I have no doubt they hassled him first, despite what the survivors say). Part of the problem there is that they are not accepted by the local population. That’s not the fault of the Hmongs

      2. Where I grew up, the Vietnamese were considered a scourge. They were supposedly from an ultra-violent culture that made their children have no respect for human life or the rule of law and importing them was going to be the end of our democracy. This was Orange County CA in the 80s.

  12. OT: Wapo on guns in France. Ban illegal guns harder:

    French gun laws date back to April 18, 1939, though they have been amended a number of times since. They are certainly tough: There is no right to bear arms for the French, and to own a gun, you need a hunting or sporting license which needs to be repeatedly renewed and requires a psychological evaluation.
    Almost certainly illegally. Bloomberg reports that weapons designed for military use, such as the Kalashnikov AK series, have been illegally flooding France over the past few years, with state bodies recording double digit increases.
    Even so, France may respond to the Charlie Hebdo shootings with a change to legislation. After a series of deadly shootings in 2012 in Toulouse and Montauban (which also involved the use of illegally obtained weapons), the response was a call for a crackdown on gun availability.

    1. Hoplophobic prohibitionists continue to eviscerate liberty and foster a more terrorist- and criminal-friendly environment? I’m shocked.

    2. (Psst, that’s from January)

      1. Psst, I know. Psst, Funny how that plan worked out, no?

    3. How did that work out in 1939?

      1. You know who else “worked out” in 1939…

        1. Charles Atlas?

        2. Max Schmeling?

        3. Warty’s grandpa?

    4. Free-er gun zones.

      13-year old kills a burglar.

      We’re told the teenager retrieved his mother’s gun and went to the back door. Seeing the suspect behind the home trying to get inside, he fired the gun through the door and the suspect reportedly fired back.

      1. That kid not only ensured the burglar would never rob anyone else, he also sent a message to every other would be burglar that breaking into homes is a contact sport and perhaps not the best way to make a living.

        That kid is a real public servant.

        1. Yeah, I love it when burglars get shot. Burglary is a lot more common in places without a castle doctrine or general right to self defense.

          1. Me too. There will always be thieves. It is just human nature. But even theives can be deterred to some extent. I am willing to live with the risk of my house being robbed when I am not there and my shit getting stolen. Sometimes bad things happen. I am not however willing to live with the risk of someone breaking into my home and harming me while I am there. Things can be replaced. People cannot. So I want every would be thief to go out of his way to ensure wherever he is robbing the person who lives there isn’t home. Robbery is a part of life that sadly has to be tolerated on occasion. Home invasions not so much.

        2. His parents will probably wind up being jailed on child endangerment and gun charges.

          1. He’s in South Carolina, I think, so maybe not.

  13. Welch takes another run at it doubling down on the stupid.

    The answer is still NO.

  14. Also, Reagan is playing poker with Lou Reed. He wouldn’t do anything about this situation.

    1. I believe Glen Campbell’s sentience is in on that game.

  15. Who gives a shit what Reagan would do? He came into office 40 million immigrants ago.

  16. While we’re reincarnating presidents, I want Grover Cleveland.

    He had, like, 400 vetos or something?


    1. Bring back Grover!!! I would be okay with any of the forgotten did not do a lot late 19th Century Presidents. The country had a pretty good run between Grant and Teddy Roosevelt.

      1. Here’s the problem with that notion. Those Presidencies were reknowned for crazy levels of corruption. Given the limited scope of Fedgov power 150 years ago, it would be less problematic than it would today. On the other hand, those presidents did have some great beards.

        1. I could live with some corruption. It is not a good thing but it is also not always the worst thing either. In fact, if the government starts doing immoral or illegitimate things, the world turns upside down and honest government becomes the worst option. Despite what people say, we actually have as governments go an amazingly honest and efficient federal government. That, however, is not a good thing since it is honestly and efficiently doing all sorts of harmful things.

          I would be very happy to live with politicians stealing if I got a limited and small government in return.

        2. Those Presidencies were reknowned for crazy levels of corruption.

          So, we’d maintain our current levels of corruption, but get a lot more vetos?

          Sign me up.

    2. Harrison had the good sense to die after 32 day in office.

      1. One of the forgotten really horrible turning points in American History is McKinley’s assassination. If McKinley isn’t assassinated, TR never becomes President. If TR is never President, the Progressive movement likely never gets any real power in this country. No TR, likely no Wilson.

        1. Wouldn’t have been Wilson, it would have been some other statist asshole. Wilson was not that charismatic. The people normally get what they’ll tolerate and they’ll tolerate a good ole fashion rogering if the time is right.

          1. No split due to TR means no Wilson.

            1. But if not Wilson, someone just like him. I’m still betting Wilson anyway. Let’s rev up the Atavachron and find out for sure.

              1. Yeah, Progressivism was in the air.

                Hell, without Wilson they may have had a more charismatic leader, and it would be worse.

        2. John, write that alt-history novel and I can guarantee people will buy it.

          1. Wilson will swoop in and stoke the Progressive Movement full steam. TR was a symptom, not a cause.

            1. Wilson only won because TR ran against Taft and split the vote. And Wilson’s Presidency ended with the Democratic Party being completely out of power and the word “progressive” being so loathed progressives stopped using it.

              The majority of the country never supported progressiveism. It was, much like the Great Society, forced on an unwilling country by a combination of historical misfortunes. TR would have never been elected President had he not been VP when McKinley died. And Wilson would never have become President had TR and Taft not split the opposition vote. And that doesn’t happen if TR is never President.

              1. The majority of the country never supported progressiveism.

                They had a funny way of showing it at the polls.

                1. Noting, of course, that the Presidential elections were not the only ones…

                  1. No they are not Candy. And progs never ruled in most states.

                2. You mean like when the majority of the country voted against Wilson in 1912 or handed the Democratic Party the worst defeat any party has ever had in 1920? Or when they elected McKinley?

                  They didn’t show it at the polls. The two progressive Presidents only got into office because of historical accidents not because they commanded a majority.

                  1. Constitutional amendments take 3/4 of state legislatures for ratification, John. Income taxes, direct election of senators, and prohibition all passed that test during the progressive era. To say nothing of legislation passed by congress, including the Federal Reserve Act and Federal Trade Commission Act. Progressive policies were a lot more popular than you’d like to pretend. You might also notice that all of those abominations with the sole exception of alcohol prohibition are still with us today, and anyone proposing to reform or repeal them is shouted down as a dangerous lunatic.

        3. For the love of God, that is the only thing anyone remembers about the Pan-Am Exposition of 1901. You can’t deprive the good citizens of Buffalo that legacy.

  17. Since Reagan is dead and he never faced a situation like this, there is no way to say what he would have done. The fact that Reagan supported the idea of the US accepting refugees in no way means he supported it in every instance.

    Yes, accepting refugees is generally a good thing for a country to do. That fact, however, doesn’t make it a good thing in every instance or obligate a country to accept every refugee asking for admittance.

  18. Somewhat OT: I heard a report about the first draft of the UN declaration of human rights. The USSR didn’t like the part that people had the right to leave a country. Saudi Arabia didn’t like the part about people having a right to leave a religion.

    1. That doesn’t surprise me.

      1. I actually took a class on the thing and damned if I remember. (Hey, it was to fulfill a GenEd requirement.)

      2. I’d bet the compromise is that the UN doesn’t officially recognize the right to leave a country or a religion.

    2. Saudi Arabia didn’t like the part about people having a right to leave a religion.

      Westerners tend to be very ignorant about Islam, regardless of where they fall politically. But the people who think it’s just like Christianity and Judaism are probably the most ignorant. Christians and Jews don’t kill their apostates.

      1. Well, not anymore.

      2. Deuteronomy 13:6-11:

        If your very own brother, or your son or daughter, or the wife you love, or your closest friend secretly entices you, saying, “Let us go and worship other gods” (gods that neither you nor your fathers have known, gods of the peoples around you, whether near or far, from one end of the land to the other), do not yield to him or listen to him. Show him no pity. Do not spare him or shield him. You must certainly put him to death. Your hand must be the first in putting him to death, and then the hands of all the people. Stone him to death, because he tried to turn you away from the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. Then all Israel will hear and be afraid, and no one among you will do such an evil thing again.

        We only like the Jews so much as they don’t actually follow their own written rules.

        And while there’s no Biblical injunction for it Catholics and Protestants spent a few hundred years murdering each other for supposed apostasy.

        1. Do you think you’re telling me anything I don’t already know?

        2. Jews have other source documents besides the Old T. Not even their fundamentalists interpret it literally.

          1. That’s sort of my point, no? The Jews have a few thousand years of reinterpretation of their beliefs through a lens of being a minority in other cultures and not having the state power to murder people they disagree with. al-Wahhab intentionally swept away interpretations of Islam that developed during its multicultural phase, as did John Calvin with Christianity.

            Luckily for us Calvinism only took off in Geneva and Scotland ( and unfortunately for “witches” parts of North America) and not all of Christendom.

            1. The Jews, much like the Muslims, built their religious kingdoms by killing the nonbelievers.

              Christians subverted the Roman Empire from the inside.

              The resulting Roman Church was arguably a low point in Christianity. Idol-worshipping Imperialists. Much like the, um, Roman Empire. Go figure.

        3. So call me when Islam goes through a couple of reformations and counter-reformations.

          1. What do you think Wahabbism is? Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab is the John Calvin of Islam, dude.

            1. Kinda disproves the whole, fatuous “the arc of history bends towards justice” thing.

              Look at pix of Afghanistan, Libya, Iran, etc. from the 50s and 60s. Much more liberal and much less theocratic than they are now.

              1. I mean, I disagree fundamentally with the Hegelian ideal of historical progress, but if you look at Cromwell taking over England and banning dancing or Calvin taking over Geneva and making everyone wear black you don’t say “Haha! That’s where Western progress went to die!”

                You’re trying to evaluate the longue dur?e through a lens of very immediate events. We won’t know until later whether Salafism/Wahabbism is a speedbump in the history of Middle Eastern progress or if it’s the new normal.

                1. What Jessee said. There is nothing that says history must always go one way. It amazes me how so many German and later Marxist ideas permiate the thoughts of even virulent anti-Marxists.

                  Unless you believe in some kind of super natural force guiding mankind, history is not some deterministic journey towards enlightenment. History is whatever we make it to be.

                2. You’re trying to evaluate the longue dur?e through a lens of very immediate events.

                  Well, I was looking at the devolution of these societies over a 50 year period. I guess in a long enough timeframe, that would be “very immediate”. But that would be a very long timeframe, I think.

                  1. That’s bullshit. There’ve been what, two Supreme Leaders of Iran since the revolution? Calvin and Beza were in charge of Geneva for that long. How long do you think Puritanism was a political force in England or more broadly the English colonies and how long do you think Europe was in the throes of internecine religious reforms?

                    You’re being suckered by how recently these countries became a shithole. My uncle went there when Kabul was still nice. It really wasn’t that long ago.

                  2. Sorry, it occurs to me you might be interpreting longue dur?e as “long term” but it’s really used for the concept of loooooooong term. It’s meant as an offset to chronologies of events and is meant to not replace histoire ?v?nementielle but to help us not miss the forest for the trees. Longue dur?e is about “a very long timeframe” indeed, and two generations isn’t long enough.

  19. “They work for 10 to 12 hours. They make basically three dollars an hour and that has not been the minimum wage in almost 35 years,” said Yanin Senachai of Asian Americans Advancing Justice.

    Another advocate said abuses were “often indistinguishable from human trafficking cases,” telling the story of a woman who was forced to go to the bathroom in a bucket because she wasn’t allowed to leave the kitchen where she worked.

    We might as well be getting our sources from Twitter.

    1. And I thought “human trafficking” was a bullshit made up term? Or is it only made up when we are talking about hookers?

      1. Who do you think you’re criticizing?

      2. It’s definitely bullshit when it is assumed to all prostitution. It does look like things do go on that could be called human trafficking. Both semi-slavery situations and unscrupulous people smuggling people across borders. The biggest bullshit is probably conflating all of those things and talking about it as if it is all practically slavery.

        1. The reason why human trafficking is a bullshit term when talking about hookers is that it assumes the hookers are there against their will. It assumes that no one could voluntarily choose harsh conditions. That of course is bullshit. The hookers are nearly always there voluntarily and few their conditions, however harsh, as an improvement over the conditions at home.

          The same logic applies here. These people are not being “trafficked” any more than the hookers are. They are just making the rational choice to take the best option available. I object to the use of the term in both contexts.

          1. Sorry, didn’t realize that those were snarky rhetorical questions.

            I do agree, though. It is quite possible and common for people to voluntarily work jobs and in conditions that most of us would find unacceptable. Simply being paid less that minimum wage is not by itself unfair exploitation.

            While actual cases do happen, “human trafficking” has probably become a useless term because of how broadly and inappropriately it is being used.

            1. Yes Zeb. It was a snarky rhetorical question. Sorry that wasn’t clear.

  20. 46 years striding the planet tonight and instead of getting a couple of fat joints to share with a couple of good friends, I went out and had a few too many beers and bourbons (Joe law speaks). You all have a good night. You’re fucking nuts and the machine will crush you. Happy day, muthafuckers.

    1. Happy birthday.

      Celebrate like a true American.…..raptor.jpg

    2. Are you filling in for Agile Cyborg?

  21. George Washington was against masturbation and the internet, so rethink your position.

    1. If George had had internet porn, he might have had to rethink his position.

  22. EIGHT people have been arrested at Istanbul’s main airport amid fears they are Islamic State (ISIS) terrorists posing as refugees after they were found clutching a hand-drawn map plotting the route to Germany.

    Police fear the group are Islamic State militants planning to make their way to Germany posing as refugees.

    The arrests come after an ISIS terrorist bragged about how easy it was to smuggle thousands of covert jihadists into Europe under the guise of being a desperate refugee.

    The Syrian operative claimed more than 4,000 covert ISIS gunmen had made it into western nations, hidden among innocent refugees.

    Two Turkish refugee-smugglers backed up the claims made by the terrorist.

    One admitted to helping more than ten trained ISIS rebels infiltrate Europe under the guise of asylum seekers.…..ISIS-fears

    1. The Syrian operative claimed more than 4,000 covert ISIS gunmen had made it into western nations, hidden among innocent refugees.

      He must be some yokal. That can’t be true Bubba. MJ Green assured me yesterday that ISIS would never do that since there are so many other easier ways to get people into the west. After I pointed out that obtaining a VISA is really difficult if you are a passport holder in one of the VISA waiver countries and without a VISA you can’t even get on the plane to come here, I was just told that is “classic John”. There I was just going on about all of these facts and shit like any of that matters.

      1. “not a passport holder in one of the VISA waiver countries”.

        1. But MasterCard is OK, right?

          1. No. If I am not mistaken the Clinton Foundation only takes VISA and American Express.

      2. Istanbul is in America now?

        We were not talking about “the west.” We were talking about people trying to get admitted as refugees by the US govt.

        1. So the US is not part of the West? Maybe you missed it but ISIS has said it intends to attack the US as well.

          “He didn’t mean the US”? Is that all you got?

  23. one difference though we don’t take in refugees form countries that we are fighting and yes we are arming people in Syria so we are fighting.

  24. It’s like you don’t understand.

    The problem isn’t the refugees. Help them all you want. All that really annoys me about this is the additional massive deficit spending that will be used to bury our great-great-great grandchildren under an even more massive mountain of debt(and, honestly, why people who call themselves ‘libertarians’ are so gung-ho to do this). If it could be done without costing us anything besides effort I’d be fine with it.

    So the refugees themselves, as people, as individuals, aren’t the problem. Got it?

    The problem is the jihadis that may be hiding among them. People who are not refugees.

    We know jihadis enjoy the ‘hiding amongst innocents’ tactic–they do it all the time. And this particular group of jihadis has told us that they’re going to do this–much like they said they were going to attack France while our intelligence agencies had Obama telling everyone that they were contained.

    Right before they attacked France.

    So, I’m going to take the people who’ve kept their word about murdering people when they tell me they’re sneaking in jihadis among the refugees at their word over the Liar-in-chief. Call me crazy.

    So again refugees fine–but questionably costly, jihadis bad. Got it?

    Now go put on some clean pants.

    1. So again refugees fine–but questionably costly, jihadis bad. Got it?

      Total agreement.

      Now, how do we sort the refugees from the jihadis?

      1. We all know that refugees never lie and jihadis always lie. So you sit at the border and ask “are you a jihadi?”. If the answer is “no”, you shoot them.

        1. And even if he says no, just ask him if he intends to attack the US. If he says yes, let him in since we all know jihadists always lie. So he can’t be any danger.

          1. I think you missed it.

            1. No. I got it. I just telling a bad joke.

              1. Well you can’t back joke off my bad joke, that’s illegal.

                1. * you can’t bad joke

                  I swear I double checked that before submitting. Fucking phone.

    2. I totally agree Azathoth. Beyond the issue of whether the refugees should be able to come here, there is the separate issue of why in the hell are the taxpayers paying for it. Somehow the idea that we shouldn’t ruthlessly deport people who are lawfully living and working here illegally has morphed into the moral imperative to forcibly tax people to pay for people to relocate here.

    3. our intelligence agencies had Obama telling everyone that they were contained.

      They were contained. But apparently they were contained in Europe.

  25. I’m curious: we’ve had a few discussions lately about the right results for the wrong reasons.

    Barring refugees (who will be imported on the government dime under a government program, etc.) seems like the right result from a libertarian perspective (why should the government be importing people, again?), for the wrong reasons (racist bigoted haterz blah blah).

    So, is the right result for the wrong reasons a good thing or a bad thing? Sometimes one and sometimes the other? Help me out here, por favor.

    1. I think it depends on how much of a precedent it sets and how good the right result is. Setting a really bad precedent to achieve a small right result is not a good thing. Being flexible enough to accept a very good result for wrong reasons that won’t apply very much going forward, is just fine. As with most things the devil is in the details.

    2. The result would be the right one if there was a lot of pressure to end tax funded refugee resettlement altogether. But I don’t think that is what is happening. I don’t see refugee resettlement programs being ended here entirely.

      I honestly don’t care much. My principled open borders type position on immigration doesn’t apply here (people have a right to immigrate, not to have us facilitate it) and there are worse things the government could waste money on. And if a bunch of people want to blow us up, they probably will, one way or another.

      1. If there is a larger principle involved here it is the principle that yes we can say no to refugees sometimes. If the US can’t say no here and is under some moral obligation to take these people, then it is difficult to imagine a situation where it wouldn’t be similarly obligated.

    3. Depends on how you like your morality. Does intent matter? Is intent all that matters? Do ends justify the means? Always, sometimes or never? Does the positive of the outcome outweigh the negative of the method?

    4. Barring refugees (who will be imported on the government dime under a government program, etc.) seems like the right result from a libertarian perspective (why should the government be importing people, again?),

      Right result.

      for the wrong reasons (racist bigoted haterz blah blah).

      These aren’t reasons. They’re ‘feelz’.

      Here’s a better one. If the way gay marriage was legalized gets conservative lawmakers riled enough to get the state out of the marriage business you have a right result/wrong reasons scenario. And it’s fine–if the result is actually right.

      What we have now is a solution that expands invasive state powers. It’s a wrong result(for us) for the right reasons. The people who were pushing it wanted all the invasive crap that make it a wrong result for libertarians, so for them, and for statism, it’s right result/right reason situation.

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