Syria

Rich Lowry's Overwrought Slam on Obama's Call to Admit Syrian Refugees

Committing American boots on the ground is not a morally superior option to taking refugees

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National Review has been writing piece after piece hammering calls to admit Syrian refugees. The latest in a slew of columns is Rich Lowry's screed lambasting President Obama for pleading that Americans shouldn't "slam the door in their [refugees] faces." Fumes Lowry:

One wonders when Obama began caring so much about Syrians? If you put those 10,000 Syrian refugees back in their native country, and let them get gassed, barrel-bombed, shelled or shot, would he bat an eye, or would they just be part of the ever-growing casualty count?

The Syrian refugees are most useful to the president as a symbol of his alleged cosmopolitanism and of the supposed backwardness of his opposition.

The fact is that, since our resources aren't limitless, we are constantly slamming the door in the faces of refugees, as the president puts it. According to the World Bank, there were 2.5 million Afghan refugees in 2014; according to the office of refugee resettlement, in fiscal year 2014 we took 758 of them. There were 616,000 from South Sudan; we took 52 of them. There were 410,00 from the Central African Republic; we took 25 of them.

How can the president face himself every day betraying our values by taking so few refugees from these strife-torn countries? The problem with the argument that our values compel us to take refugees is that it isn't subject to any limit.

Far be it for me to defend the author of the festering wound that is Obamacare, but let me make the obvious point that the main impediment to taking in more refugees from Afghanistan, South Sudan and the Central African Republic isn't the president but Lowry and his ilk. Without a doubt, he'd oppose tooth-and-nail even the merest hint of upping America's current refugee levels from anywhere, but especially from such

Syrian Toddler
Abode of Chaos / Foter.com / CC BY

predominantly Muslim countries.

What's more, elementary moral logic would suggest that if there is an option where you can help someone without risking your life and limb — aka taking in refugees — it is preferable to the one where you do face such risks — aka putting boots on the ground, as Lowry seems to be suggesting. Especially given that the odds of success of said option are low and ugly unintended consequences virtually guaranteed.

Indeed, one can turn Lowry's question to Obama on its head and ask him: If you are willing "without batting an eyelid" to risk the lives of America's young men and women to prevent Syrians from being "gassed, barrel-bombed, shelled or shot" then "one wonders" why do you care about the strain on American pocketbooks from a few hundred thousand refugees? Over 4,000 Americans were killed and 30,000 wounded in Iraq. No one can predict what the toll of a ground invasion in Syria would be but it is a virtual certainty that there will be one. By contrast, the risk of an ISIS terrorist sneaking in among the refugees is negligible as Cato's Alex Nowrasteh and I have explained. Hence Americans would come out ahead both in blood and treasure under the refugee scenario than yours.

But what's most odd for someone trying to gain the moral upper hand is the harsh way Lowry talks abut refugees, portraying them as liabilities that will drain America's limited resources rather than assets that will actually generate more. But human beings are not simply mouths who eat; they are also hands and minds capable of making vital contributions. This is true of immigrants in general but especially true of refugees. Emergencies generate a firesale of human talent because among those trying to escape are not just the poor and jobless but also the well educated and urbane.

Indeed, refugees tend to pay back any initial assistance by the host country in droves and then some. America took in about 800,000 boat people after the Vietnam War. Did Americans experience any downside (except for having to endure trashy stories by the New York Times about exploited Vietnamese nail salon workers)?  But if protecting taxpayers is Lowry's concern, how about reviving the Reagan-era plan of having the private sector pick up the tab for the resettlement of refugees?

Lowry is a long-time defender of pro-life causes so surely he can go along with such a life-preserving plan that won't cost American lives, won't strain the American purse, and produce untold riches for the country?

Otherwise how will he "face himself every day"?

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  1. Yeah, I can’t get enough of looking at that poor kid.

    1. I hold his greedy father responsible.

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    2. Dammit, Fist, you will appreciate the effort it took to stage the photo, and WATCH IT EVERY DAY!

      1. Not sure I understand the image. Is it portraying an anchor baby?

        1. Yes, washed ashore.

          I am surprised Shikha didn’t embed this to start playing when we opened the article:

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QuNhTLVgV2Y

        2. If so, someone apparently doesn’t understand how anchors work.

  2. if there is an option where you can help someone without risking your limb and life ? aka taking in refugees

    Yeah, you’re assuming your conclusion there. You never fail to be an idiot when the subject is immigration

  3. Committing American boots on the ground is not a morally superior option to taking refugees

    Non sequitur much?

  4. there were 2.5 million Afghan refugees in 2014; according to the office of refugee resettlement, in fiscal year 2014 we took 758 of them. There were 616,000 from South Sudan; we took 52 of them. There were 410,00 from the Central African Republic; we took 25 of them.

    Obviously the UN should come up with an algorithm for computing each nation’s fair share.

    1. What this tells me is that shutting down our refugee imports from those areas is not going to have any kind of noticable impact on the actual refugee populations.

    2. Yeah, let’s open the borders again like it was 1890.

      The Poles and Hungarians will be miners and steel mill workers; the Irish will join the New York police force or work building railroads; the Italians will grow vegetables in market gardens; the Scandinavians will be lumberjacks and work in the sawmills until they save enough money to buy Midwestern farms; the Slovenians will find employment in the Chicago stockyards and work for Armour and Swift.

      It will be the good old days all over again.

      1. This was meant as a reply to sarcasmic|11.20.15 How it got here I do not know. Arboreal rodents?

      2. Fuck yeah! I get to be NYPD! I’ll be like Morgan Freeman in Se7en! Except not black or talented or mellifluous!

    3. Obviously the UN should come up with an algorithm for computing each nation’s fair share.

      They already have one actually, it is the United Nations Constant USA=100%

    4. Rich,

      If the UN does that, it can submit for questions as to what any interested Americans would like the UN to do with its algorithm and conclusions. Refugees and/or migrants and/or terrorists (current, or like secret pod people, ready to be “radicalized” by seeing a website) are best situated in camps as near the home country as possible.

      This was the policy before the EU included Syrian masses of walking population in the “sure, c’mon in and have a water bottle” policy that they’ve been practicing on the other side of the Med for many months now. The clump of migrants/refugees that walked up to the tunnel to England and are stuck there (in Calais, France) result from that policy. More of them have filled up nooks and crannies of Italy and caused countries on Italy’s border to start blocking them from entry.

      This EU example doesn’t mean that we have to join their PC nuttiness, but Obama and our media have done so. Sadly, Libertarian’s have a “borders, shmorders” policy already in place that leads many Libertarians to accept the PC policy of welcoming all who can make it here, or all who Obama can fly in. Please remember, Libertarians-if you aren’t paying for a guest you invite, you are stealing from the host who has to feed, cloth, educate, and shell out all of the many welfare expenditures our Nanny State now provides.

  5. One thing I wonder about is how the refugee problem is silo’ed so totally from actual events in Syria. A solution to one can solve the other…

    Last I heard, there is problem with Western nations finding appropriate faction on ground in Syria that will take out both Islamic State and Bashar – in other words, a Western-friendly faction that we can propel to conquering all of Syria.

    Since there is not such a viable entity, make one. In Europe there are hundreds of thousands of Syrians, mostly military age men. Sounds like the raw material to build an army with. Two birds, one stone.

    1. I doubt building an army out of those determined not to fight is going to end well.

      1. Determined not to fight, and determined not to fight without an AK when other guy has one are very different things.

        1. I don’t think its very hard for anyone motivated to fight to get their mitts on an AK in that part of the world.

          1. Gun control works for the sheep until someone hands them one.

      2. They’re willing to riot for welfare, so I guess that counts for something.

    2. To clarify, this would not be a simple “send Army trainers and lots of weapons and petty cash” shtick – that shit obviously does not work.

      I’m talking build-an-army with general staff, back-office, the whole thing. It would take at least a year, probably more. Training is not Stinger-instruction-manual shit but very real boot camp – tear the clowns down to build what they need to be. One would need to cull professional USMIL relationships for references to assemble good core of training and staff officers – probably a lot of Egyptians and Jordanians – which are on same page, Arabian Baron von Steubens if you will, Jordanian desert somewhere the Valley Forge, probably integrated with the refugee camps already there.

      Then roll across the landscape, obliterating all resistance in a war complete surrender or annihilation. No ISIS, Hezbollah, or remaining Syrian regular unit could stop such a force.

      This is the way one conquers big patches in that part of the world, and has been since Antiquity.

      1. I think you are describing an American Foreign Legion.

        1. With all due respect, where are you going to find enough unicorns to serve in this army?

          Never said army would be made of a bunch of Western-loving Syrians, I allude to army composed of Bashar-and-ISIS hating Syrians. Do you see the difference? Any polling on that worth sharing? Plenty of unicorns by such measure I’d wager.

          1. The enemy of my enemy is not necessarily my friend. For example, in Iraq, al-Maliki sold us out to the Iranians as quickly as he could. I see no reason to consistently reenact the fable of the Scorpion and the Frog by arming and training these groups.

            1. The enemy of my enemy is not necessarily my friend. For example, in Iraq, al-Maliki sold us out to the Iranians as quickly as he could. I see no reason to consistently reenact the fable of the Scorpion and the Frog by arming and training these groups.

              The Iraq situation was far more complex than simple ‘al-Maliki sold us out’ line. Also worth mentioning the clowns elected al-Maliki.

              And, indeed, the enemy of my enemy is not necessarily my friend – but I’m better off with my enemy fighting my other enemy thousands of miles away instead of squatting next door, mooching, and wishing to replace the free society I live in with another version of their shithole world.

              1. I’m better off with my enemy fighting my other enemy thousands of miles away instead of squatting next door, mooching, and wishing to replace the free society I live in with another version of their shithole world.

                You seem to have accepted that we must do something (i.e. spend money). Say ISIS successfully established its caliphate tomorrow; what changes to your daily life would that invoke? Until ISIS acquires an ICBM or an aircraft carrier, why stick our dick in that beehive?

                1. Until ISIS acquires an ICBM or an aircraft carrier, why stick our dick in that beehive?

                  I totally agree with you on that point 100% percent. However our dick has been in that beehive long enough that ISIS is actively trying to export its war here, and in Europe.

                  The trick is not sticking dick into beehive – long too late for that – but how to kill beehive so one can safely pull dick out.

          2. I’d be curious how many Syrians hate both Assad AND ISIS. I suspect the ones that do are getting cleaned up by the Russians and Assad right now, to set up the confrontation with ISIS that will pretty much force everyone to support Assad.

            Jeebus, but Obama got played brutally by Putin.

            1. I’d be curious how many Syrians hate both Assad AND ISIS. I suspect the ones that do are getting cleaned up by the Russians and Assad right now…

              Think most of those folks comprise the ones who fled; they have no team in the game so aren’t playing. Try some league expansion, that’s what I’m saying.

          3. Yeah… I dunno. Assad is a dick, sure, but he’s a fairly pluralistic dick for the region. Doesn’t like Sunnis, sure, but given that they’re the faction responsible for ISIS, maybe the man has his reasons? I don’t know if there’s anyone on the other side that would actually be better (even for Syria, certainly not for the West). I mean, yeah, lots of people there don’t like ISIS. So what? Al Qaeda doesn’t fucking like ISIS.

    3. Zeit,

      Obama has ignored the Egyptian presidents strong hint of an offer, and the Jordanians overt offer of willingness to be part of an American led and paid for effort to stomp ISIS. This is a dream, because it would be leading, and we’re talking Obama. I’ve deployed with Marine Infantry as part of the BAS (medical). Each Battalion is less than 1300 men, and one or two of these leading the Egyptians and Jordanians would wipe any Syrian, along with their Iranian and Lebanese Hezbollah allies off the map. Marine and Navy Air from a carrier in the Med and Iraqi fields in Iraq will also be part of this-the Marines and Navy are the same team, and work together.That same Marine contribution could be placed in Iraq to support the Iraqi’s in doing the same thing to ISIS there, and then to follow retreating ISIS to Syria, then killing it. I guarantee you, no exaggeration, the Marines can do this.

      The refugees / migrants / terrorists / “pod people” like non terrorists who can get “radicalized” by a website a day or years later and become terrorists can all be kept in the camps in Turkey and Jordan now, and new camps there. The EU, we and the Gulf states could pay for this, if Obama led (oops-there’s that key piece missing again) Keeping them there is the old method, from before the EU PC leadership and Obama decided it was smarter to import them and pay much more per person to house them in developed countries.

  6. I have to believe Reason has given up on ever being taken seriously again and has just gone into the business of trolling the reading public. I guess they’ll at least keep the folks at the Onion on their toes.

    1. Cognitive dissonance theory might explain Reason’s recent bombastic over-the-top pro-immigration screeds. One of the causes of cognitive dissonance is confrontation with new information that conflicts with existing beliefs. Reason certainly believes open borders to be very good thing with no risks and negligible costs to native populations. Unfortunately, it’s obvious from the effects of mass uncontrolled immigration to Europe and the Paris atrocity that this is not so.
      Take it away, Leon Festinger.

      Suppose an individual believes something with his whole heart; suppose further that he has a commitment to this belief, that he has taken irrevocable actions because of it; finally, suppose that he is presented with evidence, unequivocal and undeniable evidence, that his belief is wrong: what will happen? The individual will frequently emerge, not only unshaken, but even more convinced of the truth of his beliefs than ever before. Indeed, he may even show a new fervor about convincing and converting other people to his view.

      1. Besides which, I’m not all that sure modern society provides Muslims with much reason to believe their beliefs are wrong.

        Hell, most Americans would agree that the West *is* decadent; as far as basic worldview goes, what one thinks about Sharia law and Muhammad’s life is an opinion rather than an issue of factual error. Many Muslims know what’s in their scriptures and *like* it in its literal form.

        Differences in worldview are not necessarily a matter of factual error.

        1. Hell, most Americans would agree that the West *is* decadent; as far as basic worldview goes, what one thinks about Sharia law and Muhammad’s life is an opinion rather than an issue of factual error. Many Muslims know what’s in their scriptures and *like* it in its literal form.

          Differences in worldview are not necessarily a matter of factual error.

          This observation also exposes a fallacy uttered constantly by Western apologia that concepts such as church/state separation, intellectual and physical freedom, egalitarianism, etc. are ‘universal’ values shared by all humanity – they are Western values invented in the West at tremendous cost, and are incredibly recent in the human story.

      2. Unfortunately, it’s obvious from the effects of mass uncontrolled immigration to Europe and the Paris atrocity that this is not so.

        Did you believe this eight days ago?

        1. It’s been obvious for over a decade. The raids to catch / kill the Paris terrorists are occurring in Muslim ghettos so hostile to French authorities that they are no-go areas for regular police patrols.

          1. There’s the decades of problems in France and other Euro countries who have been trying to convert Muslim imports into good tax cattle.

            There’s also the Rotherham child rape scandal.

            Yeah, some of us have had good reason to believe for quite some time that this is a problem.

        2. “Did you believe this eight days ago?”

          Yes. I suspected it for a long time and began believing it when illegal migration to Australia began in earnest during the Kevin Rudd / Julia Gillard years. This was a pilot-plant scale foreshadowing of what’s happening in Europe now. Nothing I’ve seen since has changed my mind.

          1. So your mind didn’t change, but you’re convinced that ours was supposed to?

            As Zeb said this morning, what happened last week wasn’t exactly shocking. There was no “new information that conflicts with existing beliefs.” We already knew that Europe had a Muslim extremist problem; the same city was attacked earlier this year in broad daylight! So why do you assume that our minds should be changing with this event, such that we must be suffering cognitive dissonance? What is it you think we have or should have learned from last week? I’d bet that most of us already knew it. (OK, I won’t stick my neck out for Dalmia) What has been said around here that didn’t take last week into account?

            If Jackie v2 came out tomorrow with a verifiable story of gang ramp, would it be cognitive dissonance for Robby and ENB to write a bunch of posts about how rape is still rare and campuses are still quite safe?

            1. Yeah, I don’t really get the whole “we knew immigration was a problem! There coming from IN THE HOUSE!” nonsense.

              Uh, anybody who wants to kill Americans can pretty much cross the Mexican/Canadian border any time they want.

              Or boat in, illegally. Or fly in, illegally.

              Legal restrictions on immigration probably do a most effective job at keeping more-or-less law-abiding people out of the country.

              If the whole problem is “Culture! Voting!”, well, yeah, tell me about it. I’ve been watching democrats and republicans vote this country into pure awesomeness for so long, I’m not really sure what difference a few million Muslims can make.

              Frankly, I don’t understand what democrats act as though tough immigration laws is some sort of moral tragedy for them. At the point that you establish a society with a democracy and start giving the citizens rights to vote, doesn’t it make sense to have some sort of membership policy in place? There’s a reason we don’t extend the vote to everyone on the planet.

              That’s just a basic problem of democratic governance with no respect for individual rights, and we’ve only had that problem for about… oh… 250 years now.

              I really don’t think the Muslim immigrants, or lack thereof, are going to make or break that.

              What are you going to do? Create a super constitution with a huge bill of rights and a 95% legislative approval requirement for any modifications? You’ll come back around to the same problem: getting the votes to go your way.

            2. I don’t think it’s possible to change the minds of true believers. Somebody asked, I answered.

      3. I wonder how native American tribes felt about “open-borders”? I guess they didn’t have the grad-student turned Reason writers around to condescend to their lack of enlightenment.

      4. Homp,

        Yes, cognitive dissonance would explain why people so confident of their focus on reason that they so name their website and magazine ignoring the reasoned opposing views of those saying “hey-I dont want to pay for your damn dream policy, Mr and Mrs heart of gold! Pay for your dreams yourself!”

    2. No kidding. This line is right in self-parody territory:

      Emergencies generate a firesale of human talent because among those trying to escape are not just the poor and jobless but also the well educated and urbane

      I remember well that firesale of raw military talent the Romans got when Attila the Hun drove the Ostrogoths onto their land.

      1. Damn, Trouser! Just how old are you?

        1. He is the reincarnation of Patton, of course.

          1. Holy crap, it’s Vandal Savage!

            1. By kind-he was once well-creased. Many washings have at least kept him immaculate.

      2. Look, Jordan and Lebanon wouldn’t be what they are today without the Palestinian influx!
        I’m just surprised Turks are willing to let all that talent go – I’ve always been taught they are extremely crafty and quick to recognize talent, wherever it came from.

      3. Interestingly, the Visigoths sought asylum from the Romans and offered to help in the fight against the Huns, which the Romans refused because they had policies about barbarians and refused to trust them.

        And look how that turned out.

        1. I’ll bet it had a lot more to do with a shitty dying economy than agreeing not to lock arms with Visigoths.

  7. If NRO is being overwrought then Dalmia is clearly shrieking.

  8. Do any of the reason.com authors read the comments?

    Do any of them want to explain why paying to import people who are going to end up on the gov’t dole is a libertarian idea, let alone a good idea?

    1. ENB and Roby have been known to not only read, but engage as well. So did Tucille of Blessed Memory.

      1. Are we still not allowed to talk about Lucy?

      2. Tucille is no longer here?

        (Sings mournfully)
        “You picked a fine time to leave us, Tucille”

      3. Ron Bailey, too.

        1. Yes, he reads them long enough to call a majority of his readers idiots in story updates.

    2. I’m sorry, I don’t know if anyone informed you, but borders require a thing called “government”, and you guys fight tooth and fucking nail to make sure there isn’t any. You made your bed, sleep in it.

      1. Bravo, sir. That link-trap triggered my nostalgia for the Internet cca 1998.

        1. Ahhhh, I miss old-school internet.

          1. Eternal September still exists on Facebook.

    3. I think we may have a duty to help people who come to our borders fleeing for their lives–just like I’d call an ambulance for someone who was on fire or bleeding to death. But I do not understand why it is necessary to resettle people within our borders when they come from conflict areas that feature rampant anti-Americanism and are rife with terrorist activity.

      Why can’t we help them without bringing them within our borders?

      Telling me I should welcome these people into our country because I’m not racist is like telling me I should bet my life savings on blackjack because I’m not a racist. It just completely misses the point.

      1. Why can’t we help them without bringing them within our borders?

        We can, but we also have plenty of land and riches and this is part of an international program, and we’re accepting a small amount. We’d be denounced just as we are (correctly) denouncing the wealthy neighboring countries that aren’t opening their doors to refugees.

        1. “We can, but we also have plenty of land and riches ”

          No, no we don’t. And we certainly don’t have enough to allow some wet behind the ears fuckwit like you to give it away for no obvious benefit.

          “We’d be denounced”

          I could not possibly care less.

          Buying the good will of the world might work for you, but it’s a plainly stupid idea and you’ll never get me to support it like you do.

        2. What are you talking about “we,” white man? You and your immigrants can keep your fucking grubby hands off my lands and riches.

        3. “We can, but we also have plenty of land and riches and this is part of an international program, and we’re accepting a small amount. We’d be denounced just as we are (correctly) denouncing the wealthy neighboring countries that aren’t opening their doors to refugees.”

          If salvaging whatever is left of our international reputation is the only plus associated with bringing Syrian refugees physically within our borders, then I’m not sure that’s worth the price in terms of the security risk. Certainly not if the alternative is that we can help them without bringing them within our borders.

          Oh, and if you (second person singular) want to help Syrian refugees, there’s no reason to wait for the government to force the rest of us to do your bidding. Simply go to this website:

          http://tinyurl.com/q5a48oc

          That solution has been hiding in plain sight all along.

        4. “I think we may have a duty to help people who come to our borders fleeing for their lives–just like I’d call an ambulance for someone who was on fire or bleeding to death.”

          Just for clarification, I was suggesting that “we may have a [moral] duty to help such people”–not a legal duty.

          One of the great things about being a libertarian is that you don’t have to pretend those two very different things are one in the same.

          For instance, I think people have a moral duty to be faithful to their vows and not cheat on their spouses. However, the government has no business making that a legal duty and start criminally prosecuting adultery.

          I think we have a moral duty to call an ambulance when people are bleeding to death or when they’re on fire. Start to see why your saying that we have a legal duty because we’re rich has nothing whatsoever to do with what I wrote, and you’ll have learned something important today.

          1. Trotsky and many followers “fled for their lives” from Stalin. That didn’t prove they were wonderful people who should be helped.

            1. As anti-capitalist as Trotsky was, he disavowed terrorism:

              “The killing of an employer, a threat to set fire to a factory or a death threat to its owner, an assassination attempt, with revolver in hand, against a government minister?all these are terrorist acts in the full and authentic sense. However, anyone who has an idea of the true nature of international Social Democracy ought to know that it has always opposed this kind of terrorism and does so in the most irreconcilable way.”

              https://www.marxists.org/archive/trotsky/ 1911/11/tia09.htm

              1. “In our eyes, individual terror is inadmissible precisely because it belittles the role of the masses in their own consciousness, reconciles them to their powerlessness, and turns their eyes and hopes towards a great avenger and liberator who some day will come and accomplish his mission. The anarchist prophets of the ‘propaganda of the deed’ can argue all they want about the elevating and stimulating influence of terrorist acts on the masses. Theoretical considerations and political experience prove otherwise. The more ‘effective’ the terrorist acts, the greater their impact, the more they reduce the interest of the masses in self-organisation and self-education. But the smoke from the confusion clears away, the panic disappears, the successor of the murdered minister makes his appearance, life again settles into the old rut, the wheel of capitalist exploitation turns as before; only the police repression grows more savage and brazen. And as a result, in place of the kindled hopes and artificially aroused excitement comes disillusionment and apathy.”

                https://www.marxists.org/archive/trotsky/ 1911/11/tia09.htm

                1. This isn’t about their ideology apart from the threat of terrorism.

                  My problem with Syrian immigrants is about the threat of terrorism.

                  The legitimate purpose of legitimate government is to protect our rights. If the government limits immigration from an anti-American, terrorist cesspool to protect our rights from terrorists, then it is not an illegitimate use of government. And I don’t see whose rights are being violated by not bringing them here–especially if we can help these refugees without bringing them here.

                  And it doesn’t matter whether the refugees in question are Muslim or Christian. It just matters whether the government can discriminate between terrorists and non-terrorists coming from a conflict region where everyone seems to hate the United States to some degree.

                  1. This isn’t about their ideology apart from the threat of terrorism.

                    Why not? Shouldn’t it be about ideology and culture and what immigrants will bring to the US? It’s not 1890 any more. We have more unskilled, uneducated labor than we need. We’re a broke welfare state, and refugees will be on welfare. And Muslim culture sucks: it’s corrupt and clannish. It’s literally inbred due to cousin marriage, which lowers IQ and increases birth defects. It follows a holy book that’s misogynistic and orders death for apostasy and blasphemy. They dislike gays and hate Jews. Why import people like that?

                    Yes, I know, I’m generalizing about a large group. Not every single Muslim has all these characteristics. But if we’re talking about tens or hundreds of thousands, you’ve got to play the odds.

                    1. “Why not? Shouldn’t it be about ideology and culture and what immigrants will bring to the US?

                      So long as they’re willing to respect the rights of other people, the answer is no–I don’t care what people believe.

                      I certainly don’t want the government discriminating against people because of their religion.

                      People should be free to believe whatever they want–so long as they don’t violate other people’s rights. And even when they do that, they still have the right to counsel, the right to a jury trial, the right to remain silent, etc. Oh, and they still have the right to believe whatever they want, too.

              2. My point re Trotsky was not about terrorism per se, but about the silly idealism that says anyone fleeing a bad guy must be a good guy.

                1. In exile, I wish Trotsky had taken the grande tour of America a la de Tocqueville.

                  Given everything he’d written and done, it would have been hard for him to recant communism completely–but what if he had!

                  How great would that have been from a PR perspective?

                  Orwell practically sounded libertarian at his best. What if all the liberals had heard all the same from Snowball himself? What a PR coup that would have been if he’d written about his travels that nowhere in the world does so much of the proletariat have it better than in capitalist America.

                  1. Trotsky lived in NYC for about three months in 1917.

    4. Milo,

      Are you kidding? What do you think they do for laughs? This is for you and me, buddy. They couldn’t care less, except to have an AI program track new “names” and tally new “interested visitors.”

  9. Are we all Moral Orels here? What happened to being selfish assholes and just doing nothing?

    1. Apparently getting Muslims into your neighborhood is holy cause.

  10. National Review has been writing piece after piece hammering calls to admit Syrian refugees.

    A magazine has been writing piece after piece hammering their position on the Syrian refugee issue?

    Quelle surprise!

    1. Good thing Reason doesn’t write piece after piece on their counter position. High ground!

  11. America would have been a much more prosperous nation if it had banned immigration in the beginning. Those stupid micks and wap dagos did nothing but harm to the country. Just look at all the havoc caused by the damn Irish fleeing their civil war. Or what those damn Crout and Jap terrorists did during WWII. And don’t get me started on the bastard commie saboteurs that came to this country during the Cold War. Fucking shit. No more immigration. It does nothing but harm.

    1. Well,

      There was intel that the Japanese were looking for Japanese Americans to be spies. They found a few.

      1. I’d bet there were some Jews who really were conspiring to take down the German government. Collective punishment can be a bitch.

        1. Denying a visa is just like gassing them.

    2. Last week, I needed to buy cat food. So I bought a bag. Buying cat food was good. So I kept buying cat food. I now have 50,000 bags of cat food, and I’m still buying, My house is packed with fucking cat food, but I’m not going to stop, because what was a good plan yesterday must obviously be a good plan today and forever. I just keep buying cat food. No, there’s nothing wrong. Why are you looking at me like that? Just keep loading up the cat food, bud.

      1. Gosh, you mean circumstances can change, and what was a good idea in the past might not be so today?? Somebody should inform the Reason staff!

  12. What’s more, elementary moral logic would suggest that if there is an option where you can help someone without risking your limb and life ? aka taking in refugees ? it is preferable to the one where you do face such risks ? aka putting boots on the ground, as Lowry seems to be suggesting

    I think boots on the ground are an even worse idea than taking in refugees… but I have NO idea what kind of Martian “elementary moral logic” is being used in the above sentence.

    1. “I think boots on the ground are an even worse idea than taking in refugees…”

      And therein lies the fatal flaw with “civilized” nations. We have developed this ethic of “boots on the ground – bad” and whatever liberal social philosophy counters it – good. We don’t even consider that conquest and empire are valid concepts anymore. That is how many civilizations came into existence – notably the US. Yeah, conquest and killing suck, but letting badasses of the world know you’re more interested in male Olympic medal winners “identifying” as female than kicking ass, taking names and saying “Fuck you. This is now American territory” is gonna end up a lot worse for the current residents of the US of A.
      Admittedly not a perfect approach, but the rest of the “solutions” offered by modern liberal policy experts are in line with bending over in front of a hole in the wall of a bathhouse. (Apologies to anyone who enjoys that.)

  13. I’ve met enough of both to say: Middle East refugees ? Vietnamese. Not even close.

    1. Mhmm, one large amorphous group of individuals is superior to another large amorphous group of individuals. Mmmyep.

      1. How many Vietnamese acts of terrorism have we had in the U.S.?

        1. I got into a bowl of Vietnamese soup that was pretty terrifying not long ago. Holy crap, talk about blisteringly hot spices.

          1. Vietnamese soup

            Pho? Canh? Chao? Sup? You can’t leave out details like that!

            1. Bun bo Hue can get pretty thermonuclear, depending on the hand with the chili oil. One of the great things about Houston are the ridiculous number of good places to get Pho, Canh Chua Tom, or any of the other SE Asian dishes.

              1. Bun bo Hue can get pretty thermonuclear

                Yes, and the flavors remind me of the best of my wife’s N.E. Thai style dishes.

            2. I don’t recall the name. I think I blacked out partway through.

              1. Sounds awesome! How can we restore your memory so the best bit of information in this story is not lost to the ages?

        2. A few in Port Lavaca and Palacious, Texas back in the 70s.

          They were Vietnamese fishermen who were given 20k perhousehold and they bought shrimp boats and oyster boats and then refused to obey Texas shriming and fishing laws and used that adantage to out produce the native shrimpers. The Fed Gov pushed the Texas Parks an Wildlife to lay off of them claiming cultural and language differences.

          There were some AK vs. M-16 with a few homemade naplam bomb battles that went on in Port Lavaca and Palacious and then finally the US government set them up with Offshore ( multi million dollar ) shrimp boats so they would no longer be in competition with the local native shrimpers instead of setting up the native shrimpers with the more profitable offshore boats.

          I lived 20 miles from the where first firefight happened and I knew some of the fishermen involved at the time. happened.

          1. More a cool Texas story than terrorism.

      2. Culture is a thing, you know.

      3. I reckon you could just break them down to the individual level and then tally up which side has the highest amount of superior members.

      4. No, any two groups of people are completely indistinguishable from one another. How we ever figured out this particular group of 10,000 people was “refugees” is a total mystery to us all, what with them being identical in every significant respect to a group of 10,000 Amish people.

        1. Fucking Amish, coming into our country, taking our jobs, soaking up welfare. At least, I think they’re Amish. How could I possibly tell?

          1. I think if they are prone to shouting “Allahu Akbar” when they get excited, they’re Amish, right?

            1. Sounds legit.

  14. “Without a doubt, he’d oppose tooth-and-nail even the merest hint of upping America’s current refugee levels from anywhere, but especially from such predominantly Muslim countries.”

    The National Review has made a niche for itself in the national conversation as providing real live strawmen for left wing people or anybody else that wants one. Salon.com, more or less, does the same thing on the left. If I want a ridiculous quote about feminism, racism, or capitalism, I can go to Salon.com any time and find whatever I’m looking for. If you’re on the left, on the other hand, and you want to accuse the right of being misogynist, racist, or capitalist, the NRO put up fresh, new ready-made examples every single day.

    What does that have to do with me and what I think?

    1. Misogynist, racist, or… capitalist?

      We’re living in strange times indeed when libertarian forum commenters toss around “capitalist” like it’s an insult.

      1. Is this Tulpa?

        If not, you and Tulpa should go bowling.

      2. Fucking capitalists! Don’t want no capitalists on our libertarian free market website!

        I have the weirdest feeling I’m doing this wrong.

        1. Falsely accusing people of saying something they didn’t, creating straw men, and being willfully obtuse, (especially on weekends)–all in as few words as possible–that’s Tulpa’s trademark.

          He must be the loneliest guy on the planet.

          1. Your lack of self awareness is profound, if profoundly unsurprising.

            1. What is this supposed to mean?

          2. Here’s what you said, champ:

            “and you want to accuse the right of being misogynist, racist, or capitalist”

            Clearly, you DO mean “capitalist” as an insult, on par with being misogynist or racist.

            If you don’t, then your incompetence as a writer is near-total.

            1. No, it’s your reading comprehension.

              Yeah, people on the left–who hate capitalism–use the National Review to supply them with real live straw men–so they can point to real people they hate and everything they hate about capitalists.

              They really do.

              If there’s anything ironic about that, it’s that I don’t consider the National Review to be legitimately capitalist. They’re mostly capitalist to the extent that it gets the left’s goat.

              It isn’t me hating capitalists. I don’t know why this is hard for you to understand.

              There are mainly two types of people who read NRO. There are the people who like them because of the things they write–and there are the people who hate them because of what they write.

              It’s the same thing with Salon (or Jezebel).

              In just about every AM Links thread on this website, there is some commenter linking to the latest stupid anti-capitalist, feminist, or anti-racist article on either of those websites that morning. It isn’t like that by accident. They write the stoopidest shit they can think of–and they do it reliably.

              NRO is pretty much the same thing–just from stage right. Not sorry if you’re an NRO fanboy, and that offends you. It is what it is. When the left wants a monocle wearing, racist, or misogynistic straw man to beat up for the day, they can always go to the NRO and see what was published that morning. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.

              1. What does that have to do with my personal views of capitalism?

                Anybody who’s read my daily posts here for the last ten years doesn’t have any questions about that. I’m so capitalist that I feel really secure in denouncing most of what they write over at NRO as phony ass, fake capitalism. If they actually write something that’s legitimately capitalist, it’s probably by accident because they’re trying to be the opposite of something Obama, Warren, or Hillary said that day–not because they’re genuinely capitalist themselves.

                1. “If I want a ridiculous quote about feminism, racism, or capitalism, I can go to Salon.com any time and find whatever I’m looking for.”

                  Do you imagine that the shit Salon.com writes about feminism, racism, or capitalism every day is somehow smart?

                  “If you’re on the left, on the other hand, and you want to accuse the right of being misogynist, racist, or capitalist, the NRO put up fresh, new ready-made examples every single day.”

                  Do you imagine that the left doesn’t use the NRO, et. al. to denounce the right as capitalists?

                  WTF is the complaint here? That you don’t understand things if they don’t conform to your preconceptions? That someone is pointing out that the left uses the NRO to build straw men?

                  Here’s an example of what I’m talking about from Dalima’s post at the top of this thread:

                  “Let me make the obvious point that the main impediment to taking in more refugees from Afghanistan, South Sudan and the Central African Republic isn’t the president but Lowry and his ilk. Without a doubt, he’d oppose tooth-and-nail even the merest hint of upping America’s current refugee levels from anywhere, but especially from such predominantly Muslim countries.”

                  Am I of the NRO writer’s “ilk” because I don’t want Muslims here?

                  No.

                  Their being Muslim has nothing to do with it. I feel the same way about Christian refugees who hate America, too. It’s the security risk I’m worried about. Not the religion.

                  1. But I’m used to getting smeared with a wide brush by journalists who quote the stupid shit they write at NRO or Salon.com and apply it to everyone on any side of an issue. It’s become the new standard.

                    When the left smears me as a racist because I care about free speech, they’re doing more or less the same thing. When the right smears me as hating cops because I want to see obvious cases of misconduct prosecuted, they’re doing more or less the same thing.

                    And, yeah, the left hates capitalists and uses the shit they write at NRO against us. That’s a big part of the reason why the NRO writes inflammatory shit. They’re hoping the opposition will pick it up and write a story denouncing it. That’s how they gain influence and make money.

                    1. “No, it’s your reading comprehension.”

                      No. It’s your writing. You even prove it by these, er, overwrought missives.

                      In fact, by saying “And, yeah, the left hates capitalists and uses the shit they write at NRO against us” you’re saying you did indeed mean it as an insult. You’re going to have to get your message straight.

                      It’s a poor communicator who blames his audience.

                      And . . .

                      “But I’m used to getting smeared with a wide brush by journalists”

                      Um . . . you do? Who the hell are YOU that any “journalists” would even be aware of you to want to smear? The most prominent “Ken Schultz” I can find calls himself “The Flying Fool.”

  15. What are you doing still here Shikha? You shouldn’t remain in a country you are ashamed of. Fuck off to somewhere else.

  16. elementary moral logic would suggest that if there is an option where you can help someone without risking your limb and life ]/…] it is preferable to the one where you do face such risks ? aka putting boots on the ground[…]

    Well, you’re not making a moral argument, purely a pragmatic one. I would contend that neither is moral. I have NO moral obligation to take in refugees or help them, not with my money.

    Indeed, refugees tend to pay back any initial assistance by the host country in droves and then some.

    Why would you make such an argument at all? I am not lending any money; it is the government who is taking it away from me. If the refugees pay back the money laid out by the government, then the benefit is for the government and not me. If a refugee asked me personally for help, it is up to me to decide whether I help or not. But when government decides to help, it does it without my consent.

    America took in about 800,000 boat people after the Vietnam War.

    “America” did no such thing – the government did, and only because it was the government that directly caused that humanitarian crisis. Presumably Hill-Rod’s State Department caused the crisis in Syria but that particular case is less categorical than Vietnam.

    1. Ugh, I’m so sick of these bleeding-heart libertarians like Old Mexican! Tone down the empathy just a notch, will ya!?

    2. Indeed, refugees tend to pay back any initial assistance by the host country in droves and then some.

      And, as always, one wonders why people are talking about refugees, when many to most of the migrants creating this crisis are no such thing.

      Tell us about mass migrations of young men from primitive backwaters that have been steeping in a hostile culture, and how that has worked out historically. Because that’s the problem that needs solving here.

      1. “NHCR’s annual Global Trends Report: World at War, released on Thursday (June 18), said that worldwide displacement was at the highest level ever recorded. It said the number of people forcibly displaced at the end of 2014 had risen to a staggering 59.5 million”

        http://www.unhcr.org/558193896.html

        We’re talking about 60 million people.

        Highest level ever recorded.

        What are we supposed to do about that?

        1. What are we supposed to do about that?

          Bring an absolutely minuscule number into our country to stoke our moral smugness?

          1. It really is about signaling, isn’t it.

        2. Committing social and cultural suicide and guaranting social unrest going forward doen’t seem to be a viable alternative.

      2. Re: R C Dean,

        And, as always, one wonders why people are talking about refugees, when many to most of the migrants creating this crisis are no such thing.

        Well, in the first place migrants are not refugees. So there’s that. Second, migrants are not transported and placed at the taxpayers’ expense, but enter the country on their own dime. There’s that, also. Third, most migrants who arrive in the US come to work and improve their lot ?their actions are testament to that. Refugees are simply running.

        Refugees brought to the US by the government are not brought cost-less. The government steals from us in order to pay for its social engineering experiments. That’s the problem. And that is something some of the libwaps are not taking into consideration; they are instead moved by the tragedy and the scenes, letting their emotions drive their arguments.

        1. Refugees cost the tax payers about $250,000 per refugee household per year.

      3. And, as always, one wonders why people are talking about refugees, when many to most of the migrants creating this crisis are no such thing.

        The question I have is why they are using permanent immigrants as an example of the benefits of refugees. The Vietnamese in question weren’t just refugees, but immigrants as well. They moved here and stayed indefinitely (and I’m glad they did, too).

        Is the plan for these 10,000 refugees to live here permanently? If so, maybe proponents of the plan should start being honest about that, and admit that there is more involved here than just lending a temporary helping hand to some people in need.

        If, on the other hand, it IS just a temporary thing, and the folks in question will be sent back home once the crisis is past, then proponents need to point to examples where *that* kind of thing was beneficial to the country that did it. People living in camps at the host country’s expense doesn’t seem that great to me.

        My take is that, yes, this is meant to be permanent and few people are honest enough to admit it. Well, I don’t want 10,000 immigrants from that particular culture; most of them believe people like me should be killed, and most of the rest wouldn’t do much to stop it. If we’ve got 10,000 immigration spots open, let’s get another 10,000 Vietnamese in here instead.

    3. “I am not lending any money; it is the government who is taking it away from me”

      Since money is fungible they are borrowing just as much money as they are taking so both are immoral.

    4. It appears that she got that “America took in about 800,000” jive from the ever impartial Mother Jones. Even the highly suspect Wikipedia page estimates “over 700,000” were boat people.

      Under the Orderly Departure program 458,367 Vietnamese refugees were resettled in the US between 1980 and 1997. This page is somewhat better sourced.

      Seems that the Millennial version of ‘facts’ is strong at Reason lately.

    5. Don’t worry, Shikha will personally guarantee that the government will pass those profits off of refugees right on to you. Right Shikha? It is air tight Cosmotarian logic.

  17. The reason I oppose bringing people from Syria here is because I consider them a security risk. It isn’t because they’re Arab or any other race. It isn’t because they’re Muslim–I understand many Christians were pro-Assad and hate America, too. Even the Christians that have turned against Assad have done so reluctantly. I don’t care what their religion is. I don’t care what their race is. I don’t care what their sex is, what their sexual orientation is, and I don’t care about their education level. I don’t care whether they take jobs. I don’t care whether they’re easily integrated or assimilated or not. I’m not disputing whether we should spend taxpayer money on them. Whether they pay taxes is beside the point to me.

    All I care about is that they come from a conflict zone in which all sides have perpetrated atrocities, where terrorism is rampant, and where all sides are to some degree rabidly anti-American.

    It’s just about security.

    What does stupid shit the NRO writes have to do with any of us?

  18. I met a guy a while ago in a meeting. Somebody asked him about this big scar he had going across the top of his head and down into his forehead. He said, rather matter of factly, he had grown up in a village in Congo, and was in his early teens, I gather, when it was overrun by wackos subsequent to the Rwanda massacre. They macheted everybody in his village, including his family, but when they hacked him on the head, the blade didn’t sink past his skull. Scalp wounds bleed like crazy. Anyway, he just laid there and played dead until everything was quiet.

    A relief organization brought him to the U.S., and he became a civil engineer.

    Amazing story. Inspiring even. I”m so glad they brought him here.

    But then Congo wasn’t full of anti-American terrorists that are notorious for inflicting mass casualties on American civilians for religious reasons and fun. And he was an orphan.

    If people want to adopt orphaned Syrian kids, I think that’s great.

    1. It’s always about amassing orphans with you libertarians, isn’t it?

  19. Question for the Islamic immigrants.

    Do you/would you beat your wife according to sharia?

    Answer. No – immigration denied – a wife beater.

    Answer. Yes – immigration denied – a follower of sharia.

    We could do the same about honor killings. And a few other things.

    The penalty for lying? A bacon sandwich for lunch every day.

  20. If pro life requires being open borders does pro choice imply letting undesirable Syrians die?

    1. Don’t interrupt her, she’s on a roll.

  21. If there was a medical test for PTSD that might help. The suicide bomber girl in France was not interested in politics or Islam. She WAS an abused child.

    Does PTSD Cause Terrorism?

    I would separate out the PTSD sufferers as being the most likely dangerous.

    1. Except it turns out, she wasn’t the bomber.

      In an exclusive interview with the BBC, a member of the police assault team involved in Wednesday’s raid said Hasna Ait Boulahcen, 26, was “trying to say she was not linked to the terrorists, that she had nothing to do with them and wanted to surrender”.

      But he said that due to prior intelligence, “we knew that she was trying to manipulate us”.

      If it turns out that she tried to surrender, wasn’t wearing a vest, and cops shot her anyway, there will be many a Peugeot burning. Even if it doesn’t, she’ll probably become an innocent martyr and Peugeots will burn regardless.

      1. I hear they they pre-burn them in the factory now, to save time.

      2. Ah 21:20. A nice addition to 4:20 (16:20).

        And thanks for letting me know the rest.

      3. “and cops shot her anyway”

        You got a link to that? Because I haven’t seen any reports that she was shot prior to being blown up by one of the religious terrorists.

  22. Sometimes man you jsut have to hit them up!

    http://www.CompleteAnon.tk

  23. But Shikha’s own position is glib and oversimplified as well.

    Simply put, she’ll be fine with us not engaging anyone who’s actually killing people. No boots on ground, aerial bombing, drone strikes, etc. But if some of them are able to pay smugglers and survive the turbulent seas, then we’ll accept them by the boatloads with no long term plans and accountability.

    Why don’t we just send ground troops to transport masses of people who want to escape their situation? What’s the difference? Why do middle class economic migrants who are able to finance their own escape prioritized over Syrians?

    1. There is no need for blood. They just need to convert.

  24. ” I think…that coercive redistribution to benefit the truly desperate global poor would be more justifiable than redistribution aimed at helping relatively wealthy Americans.” – Ztowlinsky
    Perhaps we all need to focus on our governments resposibility for helping create this unholy mess & the unintended consequences.

    1. And let Germany, Britain, and France off the hook?

  25. Jesus, Dalmia, every single column is just haranguing Americans for how terrible they are for wanting to keep non-Americans — especially non-Americans known to be hostile to American ideals — out of the country. Why don’t you head the fuck back to India, where I’m sure they’re doing things much better?

  26. So, on this topic at least, Lowry’s an ass. Fine.

    Making morally vacuous arguments (we can take them in so we must) and appeals to sympathy (the children! complete w/obscene photo) is a terrible, ineffective way to convince those that are concerned about safety and security to consider accepting refugees.

    Now that I think about I’m ashamed for having read the whole thing.

  27. Shikha, show your source on the 800,000 Vietnamese Boat People resettled in the USA. Especially since there were less than 800,000 surviving boat people to begin with and many other countries resettled them too.

    1. BTW, the amount settled in the US was not over a weekend, it was over more than 17 years.

    2. I should rephrase. Shikha, show how you verified your source on the 800,000 Vietnamese Boat People resettled in the USA.

  28. What’s more, elementary moral logic would suggest that if there is an option where you can help someone without risking your limb and life ? aka taking in refugees

    Elementary moral logic says you can’t rob tax payers to pay for the resettlement of refugees. You want to protect refugees, then put them up in your house, pay their way with your property. It’s not charity to steal and redistribute to the needy.

    1. In the Cosmotarian style manual, “elementary moral logic” means exactly that you are to be robbed for the benefit of others. It also means that what will be a benefit to others will be decided by others too.

      Now off to the VOX happy hour!

  29. I’d say, “Don’t trust anyone [under 30]”, but that number keeps going up and up…

    And for you little kids out there who don’t see the irony…

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Jack_Weinberg #.22Don.27t_trust_anyone_over_30.22

    I’m not sure “irony” is the right word. While seeing the children of the Berkeley Free Speech movement go full out against free speech might be unexpected, seeing the children of those raised by Dr. Spock become a generation of self-absorbed, neo-fascist, pro-ninny, zoom-dweebs is about as unexpected as tomorrow’s sunrise.

    P.S. No, not the “Live long and prosper Spock, pajama boy.

    1. Um…year, this may have been posted to the wrong thread.

      My head hurts.

      It’s still true, though!

      I’m just sayin’.

    2. I was in Berkeley and got to within a few feet of Mario Savio. a few times. Things have gone down hill. And back in the day there was a LOT of harshing the mellow. Now a days kids melt at the first sign of any level of opposition. Back in the day white kids got killed.

      My politics have changed. But kids today have zero courage. None.

    3. While seeing the children of the Berkeley Free Speech movement go full out against free speech might be unexpected,

      Not really. They were never for free speech for all, only free speech for themselves.

  30. I have a theory over why the overreaction about Syrian refugees.

    I think this overreaction has several causes:

    1) People no longer trust the government be effective or care about the rules. See Tsarnaev, see Lois Lerner, see VA scandal. See Obama trampling immigration law. This leads to distrust about screening.

    2) Obama’s lackluster approach to ISIS where he claims to be containing them, but then Paris, and then after Paris we find we have not been bombing their oil tanker trucks. Honestly, its like Obama is desultorily kicking the hornets nest…either run away or stomp it hard.

    3) Obviously people are sick of mass attacks by Islamists. Eventually, even the most open-minded person gets worn down by the Islam is peace mantra.

    4) Obama purposefully made this a partisan issue to create a stray voltage topic to avoid the media focusing on his “ISIS is contained meme” and it has succeeded. He’s baited people to oppose refugees because Obama is being unreasonable and not leading…he could have called a simple 30 day pause, mentioned only admitting women and children and everyone would have calmed down, and then forgotten about it.

    1. Your points are true, but I don’t think it’s an overreaction. A few more points:

      There is no good way to screen refugees.

      There are way too many healthy young men in these “refugees.”

      Islam has an instruction to lie to spread the faith.

      Muslims immigrate poorly.

      Americans see the large numbers of Hispanics transforming the country as much as assimilating into it.

      Refugees cost money, and we’re broke.

  31. So, Shika, just out of curiosity, how many are you taking in?

  32. More of that “assimilation” we keep hearing about.

    What, you mean people often bring their culture with them? That’s unpossible!

    1. The story of a man who moved into Molenbeek. Ah, the countless benefits of mass immigration and multiculturalism!

  33. First, you post some claim that no refugees have ever become terrorists, and Gillespie lost his shit when Twitterites bombarded him with many instances of refugees being indicted or convicted for terrorism, and then weirdly claimed that the Tsaernovs (you know, the guys who blew up the Boston Marathon) weren’t refugees. No, Gillespie couldn’t just have been WRONG; reality had to conform to his column.

    Then, you kicked yourselves in the face by arguing that the fake Syrian passport used by one of the Paris attackers somehow exonerates all of the Syrian refugees from being possible infiltrators, while savvy readers pointed out that the fake passport actually means THEY’RE TRYING TO INFILTRATE WITH THE SYRIAN REFUGEES.

    Then, you wasted a whole column on the idea that America should bring in the Syrian refugees for fear that otherwise, it’ll be “ashamed of itself,” and had the nerve to say within the column that opponents don’t operate from “logic.”

    Now you guys have the nerve to call Lowry “overwrought.”

    And I’m SYMPATHETIC.

    Not to mention what you’re advocating is that the US government bring them over and then take care of them through tax money. That’s not the same thing as the libertarian tenet that people should be able to contract freely and work for whoever wants to hire them, regardless of borders. It’s not an expression of private charity, if someone wants to sponsor and take in refugees. You’re advocating the government do it, on the public dole.

  34. It’s interesting to watch all the drive-bys who follow reason on FB criticize everyone who doesn’t agree with every one of Shikha’s or Richman’s idiotic columns for being “neocons” or “conservatives” — as if there is a doctrinaire libertarian position on every issue, without room for reasoned disagreement. I personally blame the millennial tendency to ostracize/shame anyone not subscribing to the group consensus, but of course I could be wrong. Interesting, nevertheless.

  35. If we’re painting supporters of Syrian immigration with a wide brush, this from The New Yorker seems typical to me:

    “There are four million Syrian refugees outside of the country now, and many more inside it. There will likely be some bad people among them. That fact does not obviate their suffering. Taking more of them in can be an unpopular position at a moment when the news is full of speculation that one of the Paris attackers had passed through a refugee camp in Greece with a Syrian passport. But their desperation will not disappear if we lose interest in it; it may just take a different and more destructive form. We have a role in deciding where they will go next.”

    —-Amy Davidson

    http://www.newyorker.com/news/…..n-refugees

    They may be terrorist threats to the United States, but they’re still suffering, and so we should not just help them–but make a special effort to bring them here?!

    …because if we don’t, they may become even more of a terrorist threat elsewhere?

    The supporters of Syrian immigration are all about making themselves feel good–with a willful disregard for the threat of terrorism. See? I can build a straw man, say it represents everybody, and slip needles under its fingernails, too!

    1. Its bizarre. These “refugees” pose little threat of terrorism, but are constantly on the brink of becoming full-fledged jihadis (or something), so we should bring as many as we can into this country?

      1. It doesn’t make any sense.

        Behind this, I also think there is a large contingent who are just striving to be the opposite of the redneck straw man in their heads.

        Wanting to keep Syrian refugees out of the country is racist and bigoted because the straw man in their heads is racist and bigoted. So, they support bringing Syrian refugees here because they’re not racists.

        Meanwhile, she got paid to write that.

  36. Dalmia: “Indeed, refugees tend to pay back any initial assistance by the host country in droves and then some.”

    Do you have numbers on that?

  37. I’m in quite a predicament*.

    Someone robbed me at gunpoint, but left me with a box of candy. “One of them has been poisoned”, he adds.

    Do I dump the whole box? Eat a few and take my chances? Or spend a fortune on lab work getting all the candies tested in hopes they can find the one that’s poisoned?

    I didn’t ask for the candy in the first place. I’d rather have my money back and buy a Glock.

    * This is not a true story, but just an analogy. No candy was harmed in the making of this story. And I’m not prepared to beg New Jersey to “allow” me to buy a Glock, but I am prepared to move.

  38. What a bunch of diaper-shitting crybabies you are. You want freedom, but you want to pretend it comes with no risk. Fucking morons, all of you.

    1. Looks like the risk just went up.

    2. I’d say you have been Farooked. In Santa Barbra. And a government employee to boot.

  39. Hello world!

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