Donald Trump

'We've Moved Off the Five.' Trump Already Caving on Border Wall Demands. Good for Him.

The president's commitment to increased physical barriers on the Southern border is dumb and he is smart to back down.

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President Trump is nothing if not supremely confident in all his utterances, whether they are scripted or improvised, whether they are consistent with or contradict past statements. He's vast, contains multitudes, and very well, he contradicts himself! Walt Whitman is his spirit animal! This is frustrating to his critics (and, presumably, his supporters) because conversations proceed in wildly different directions without any acknowledgment that a change of direction has in fact occurred.

Which is exactly what's happening with his insistence that he will keep the government shut down if he doesn't get $5.7 billion to fund a wall along the border between Mexico and the United States. Now, according to his own acting chief of staff, the president is ready to accept less money under the rubric of generalized "border security." "We moved off of the five and we hope [Democrats] move up from their 1.3," says Mick Mulvaney, according to The Associated Press. The Democrats, who take control of the House of Representatives this week, have said they will give $1.3 billion but no more in added funding for general "border security."

Good for President Trump for setting up a prelude to caving. A physical barrier across the Southern border, which would cost $28 billion to build and another $48 billion to maintain and operate during its first decade, is a really bad way to control illegal immigration flows (more on that later). And while government shutdowns help to demonstrate how so many government employees and services are really not "essential," they also end up costing more money than business as usual.

Expect a resolution of the government shutdown more on the Democrats' terms than on Trump's. Just don't expect him to acknowledge he yielded in any way, shape, or form. That would be completely out of character for him, even though the road to the current moment is paved with reversals of his positions. Six months after taking office, Trump told Congress to fix the Deferred Action Against Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, an executive order by Barack Obama that protected so-called dreamers, immigrants who were brought here illegally as children by their parents, from deportation. Earlier in the year (February), Trump turned down a deal brokered by independent Sen. Angus King of Maine and Republican Mike Rounds of South Dakota that would have provided $25 billion for a wall in exchange for providing a path to citizenship for Dreamers. The bill got 54 votes (46 Democrats and eight Republicans), short of the 60 needed to advance in the Senate, despite Trump's opposition (he called it a "giant amnesty"). Had he supported it, it almost certainly would have become law and construction on his wall might already be underway. A Trump-supported bill in the Senate, which would have funded only the wall, got just 39 votes.

But then just a week or so ago, the president seemed likely to sign a continuing resolution (CR) that would have funded the government through February but did not contain new funding for a border wall. Only after an outpouring of vitriol from conservative media figures such as Rush Limbaugh, Laura Ingraham, and Ann Coulter did Trump reverse course and say he wasn't going to sign a CR that didn't include at least $5.7 billion for a wall.

On December 21, the president told incoming Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) unequivocally:

"If we don't get what we want…I will shut down the government. Absolutely. And I am proud to shut down the government for border security because the people of this country don't want criminals and people who have lots of problems and drugs pouring into our country. I will take the mantle. I will be the one to shut it down. I'm not going to blame you for it."

The president tweeted this image the same day he met with Pelosi and Schumer.

By Christmas Eve, Trump was already blaming the Democrats for the shutdown and he was still pushing the need for a physical barrier rather than, well, more sophisticated approaches to surveilling the border.

And yesterday, the president audaciously blamed the recent deaths of two children in the custody of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) specifically on "Democrats" rather than anything related to his own administration's policies, which include holding families seeking asylum in detention centers run by CBP and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). That policy itself is a change from earlier programs that typically allowed families seeking asylum to live in the United States while awaiting the adjudication of their claims. One of those programs, the Family Case Management Program, had a 100 percent compliance rate among participants, suggesting that warehousing asylum-seeking families in detention centers is not just costly but unnecessary.

That is tough talk, for sure (and to the extent that it shifts blame for deaths from ICE and CBP, morally repugnant). But with acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney signaling that the White House is ready to accept crumbs to save face ("We moved off of the five and we hope they move up from their 1.3"), it's worth pausing to at least briefly lay out why a wall—whether made of concrete or beautiful slats or whatever—is an ineffective way to control illegal entry into the country.

Pew

The short version? For starters, over the past several years, the vast majority of people who are in the country illegally actually came here legally and then overstayed work, student, or tourist visas. This is a shift from decades past but the number of entries made outside of legal checkpoints declined by 90 percent between 2000 and 2016, the latest year for which there is full data. If you want to control them, it's time to turn to the "bells and whistles" of technology to find people who enter legally and then stay illegally.

In 2016, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) estimates there were 170,000 entries made outside of regular checkpoints. In the same year, DHS estimates that 628,000 people who had entered the country legally overstayed their visas. If illegal immigration status is the problem, building a wall is not going to affect the overwhelming majority of illegals in any given year. It's also worth noting that the caravans and other asylum seekers that seem to vex Trump so much inevitably present themselves at official checkpoints precisely so they can apply for legal status.

There are other signs that Trump is fighting the last several wars when it comes to illegal immigration. As Pew has documented using government numbers, illegal immigration peaked in 2007 at 12.2 million and has declined to 10.7 million, with every indication that it will continue to drop. While the president launched his campaign by invoking non-stop hordes of Mexicans constantly swarming northward, fully two-thirds of illegals have lived in the country for over a decade and the number of illegal immigrants from Mexico has declined by 1.5 million since 2007, to a current total of about 5.5 million. It's true that illegal migration from Central America is up over the same period by about 375,000 people but it's also true, as Reason's Shikha Dalmia has written, that the main sender countries—Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador—have been destabilized for decades by U.S. foreign and economic policy. If it is illegal status per se that troubles the president and his supporters, they would do well to start targeting South Asians and East Asians, who account for 1.3 million of undocumented immigrants in the United States.

But if it's a wall or nothing you must have, here's a short video created by Texas Democrat Beto O'Rourke, the former congressman who just lost a Senate race to Republican Ted Cruz. I'm not at all a Beto fan—he seems to be a warmed-over version of a few decent, centrist ideas mixed with the worst instincts toward p.c. and for progressives to promise more and more free stuff to more and more people—but he nails the case against the wall pretty well here.

If you're interested in reducing illegal immigration in a way that won't create (more of) a police state, tank the economy, burden employers, and more, check out this right now.

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235 responses to “'We've Moved Off the Five.' Trump Already Caving on Border Wall Demands. Good for Him.

  1. The Monstrous Moonshine of presidents.

  2. Article acts like the death of the children are the fault of Trump and his administration. Lol no. It’s not on them. Period.

    1. Exactly! What about those so called parents that brought them through such a dangerous journey???

      1. It’s “who,” not “that.” You have a blog, learn English.

        1. Learn English? English first! Sounds pretty racist, Tony. Why do you hate brown people?

        2. Fuck off Tony. I’ve seen you make basic grammatical errors too.

      2. Great point?Elian Gonzalez’ mother was extremely reckless to put her child’s life at risk. Shame on Republicans for encouraging Cubans to engage in reckless behavior to get here…in fact a pregnant Cuban woman drowned trying to get here not too long ago.

        1. “Shame on Republicans for encouraging Cubans to engage in reckless behavior to get here”

          Yeah, she should have just walked into the country next door and claimed asylum there.

          Oh, wait…..

      3. What about the Dems who aid, abet, and induce illegal immigration, particularly rewarding illegal immigrants who bring children with them?

        1. What about personal responsibility?

          1. The only ones lacking personal responsibility are DemocRAT voters who are complicit in the full-scale invasion that has been happening since Obummer took office through our porous borders. If these Congressmen cannot do their jobs and defend the sovereignty of our country then we should vote for more patriotic politicians who won’t neglect their jobs and sit idle while Americans lose their jobs, land, and taxpayer money to illegitimate residents who don’t have permission to live in this country.

            1. The same Obummer who was seen as the deporter in chief? Who had lower border crossing numbers than trump?

              Full scale invasion? Jesus man take off the tin foil hat.

              1. Poor trolls responding to trolls covered in socks with holes.

    2. Sometimes people just die in government custody. It’s no one’s fault, really.

    3. According to Trump, it’s the Democratic minority in Congress who’s to blame, despite having no policymaking power.

      1. It’s “who are to blame”, not “who is”, Tony. Basic English grammar.

        What is that called? Is it “Poe’s law”?

        1. If it wasn’t for double standards, poor Tony wouldn’t have any standards at all.

        2. I just think it’s funny how quickly you guys jump to the defense of a commenter you assume has tits.

          Also, “minority” is singular, you moron.

          1. I’m sorry: there is a right answer to this, and that’s not it.

          2. Let’s be real. They’re jumping at the opportunity to call you an asshole.

      2. Excuse me, but I think you meant to say that Nancy Pelosi used her newfound power to deftly out-wit the dottard.

        1. A cardboard box with a smiley face drawn on it could outwit him.

        2. I bet Gillespie too thinks Pelosi got the upper hand in that meeting with Trump and Schumer.

          The media propagandists have been squawking about it for days.

          Meanwhile Trump stood up to Congress which shut down the government. The media said Trump would cave.

          Pelosi and Schumer are helpless and the media refuses to admit it.

    4. It’s on the Border Patrol. Period. At the moment, they’re agents of the Trump Administration. Is Trump personally killing children? No. Is he contributing to the death of children? Most definitely.

      1. Children die all the time. Those two poor kids were ill, and they died of their illness.

        1. “But if they die in America, it means Americans are evil racist Nazis!”

          1. That’s what the Left proclaims. Sad, but true, indeed.

        2. Like Charlie Gard, right?

          1. If only young Charlie had been able to get to Guatamala to begin the long trek to the US southern border, he would have been fine.

        3. No one seriously believes you would hold the authorities to the same standard if it was some other class of children who died under the care of the state.

          1. It must be difficult to be so separated from reality.

            1. If an American child died while under the care of the British NHS, you would be the very first to be blaming “socialized medicine” for the child’s death.

              1. I agree with E. coli.

                I am the last person who would blame “socialized medicine” for the death of Charlie Gard.

                His death had nothing at all to do with that. What a shame that is brought up. Talk with me about mitochondrial DNA defects.

                Politics has no place there.

            2. Chemjeff has serious trouble with reality.

    5. Exactly. The spin even happens at Reason.

  3. I think Trump needs to stand strong in his plans. A wall won’t be 100% effective, but nothing is… If not a wall, then what? We’ve tried stuff and it doesn’t work!
    https://aladyofreason.wordpress.com/

    1. “I think”

      Citation needed

    2. Simple minds tend to gravitate to simplistic solutions. They also tend to be unfettered by the lessons of history.

      1. And what lesson of history might that be?

        1. That the track record of border walls is shitty at best? And was largely considered the best option due to a lack of technology?

          1. Ask the East Germans if walls work.

            1. Not relevant. That kept people in and it was reasonably effective. Keeping people out is different.

              1. With minefields and guards in towers with machine guns trained on them the entire time. Yep that is sure what we want.

          2. They worked great for the Israelis, Soviets and East Germans. Even Hadrian’s Wall, the Great Wall of Gorgan, Derbent, the Caucasian Gates and the Great Wall of China were effective against everything but large armies and internal treachery.
            In fact the Great Wall of China’s effective border controls, allowed China to make a killing on the imposition of duties on goods transported along the Silk Road. It allowed for the regulation or encouragement of trade and the control of immigration and emigration, which made it hated by the Turkic tribes to the north.

            I understand this info may contradict that totally awesome Vox Explainer podcast you heard, so here’s a great book on the subject https://bit.ly/2CFpPzR

            1. I just blasted someone for their ignorance about the maginot line.

              Their ignorance about history is so obvious when they make ridiculous ooints.

      2. Sometimes simple and clear solutions are the right ones. Don’t over complicate everything.

        1. And sometime they’re just simple. Doesn’t mean they will actually be effective. The border situation is not a simple, one-dimensional problem and it isn’t going to be solved by any simplistic thing like a wall. Hence my point. But if you want to throw billions of taxpayer dollars at it, just to find out 10 years from now that we still have an illegal immigration problem, I think you might be hanging out on the wrong website.

          1. You typed “the border situation is not a simple, one-dimensional problem” when what you should have typed was “illegal immigration is not a simple, one dimensional problem”. The border situation is definitely a one dimensional problem.

            It won’t stop visa overstays, but it would do a great job of stopping illegal border crossings. The question is, is the cost of the wall worth it for stopping border crossings, not whether it’s worth it for stopping all illegal immigration.

            1. I typed exactly what I meant to type. Without a comprehensive look at the bigger “border situation” I don’t believe we are ever going to be successful at addressing illegal immigration, which is just one aspect of it.

              Regardless, amongst all this hype about “illegal immigration” you’d think we are currently seeing some sort of mass migration happening, and people flooding our border. This simply isn’t true, and it’s borne out by current stats – illegal immigration (particularly by people illegally crossing the border, which is only one form of it) has been in steady decline for years. As has already been abundantly pointed out, spending tens of billions on a wall to only address one small part of the illegal immigration issue is a massive waste of taxpayer funds which could more effectively be spent in other ways.

              The ‘illegal immigration’ hype is another dog-and-pony show being sold to the gullible by a master three-ring showman. Just look at that BS that happened right before the mid-terms with sending thousands of U.S. troops to the border. It’s all for show, it’s all to distract, and you are willingly being swept along with it.

    3. The Antifascister Mauer worked just fine for Democratic East Germany. Sixty-eight disloyal scum were killed at the wall, and eight Heroic First Responders?, but they kept Stasi Germany safe from corroding and degenerate influences. In Mexico you can walk down the street with a lit joint in your mouth and a gram of coke pre-1905 Dr Pepper or a few hits of imitation Owsley in your pocket and it ain’t nobody’s bidness but your own. Oh, and with anarchy nobody can fine and imprison you for nationalsocialized Obummercare. Vichy France was protected by the Maginot Line before becoming a member of the EU. Then there was the Siegfried Line, behind which altruist nationalsocialism thumbed its noses at die Plutokraten. That worked too.

  4. I’d rather we just continue not funding a wall and also not funding government.

    1. I’m not afraid what will happen if the government is shutdown, I’m afraid what will happen if it isn’t

    2. Yes to both please.

  5. Open borders peeps oppose a wall. Go figure.

    1. Not all of us. I’m pretty open-border and am very ambivalent about the wall.

      1. Agree, it’s the efficacy of a wall and the complexity of building it that make it undesirable, not its purpose.

  6. There can’t seriously be anybody who’s not simply waiting this nonsense out. Maybe a few Trump die-hards who don’t want to admit they were wrong, but will be perfectly happy seeing him gone.

    1. I’m happy to see .gov shut down and happy to see Trump grandstanding for a wall. Those small stars of happiness are nothing compared to the swell of joy I get every time I think about the 2016 election and the FACT that Hillary Clinton is NOT the President of the United States.

      Have a good day Tony!

      1. If Clinton won, we would be mired in destructive bi-partisan spending in this moment.

        1. That’s probably true.

          But also if Clinton won, and she had shut down the government in order to get $5 billion for a wall, conservatives would be losing their minds and spewing bile right now, and posturing about “fiscal responsibility” and “small government” and all the usual horshite they dole out when it’s convenient, but also conveniently ignore when it isn’t.

          1. You have this cartoon version in you’re head about who the “enemy” is and what they believe, that has been carefully cultivated by the clerisy.
            But here’s the kicker my credulous friend, what your intellectual warders have labeled “conservative” is basically anyone or anything they simply don’t happen to like, or find inconvenient to the agenda at that moment. It could be classical liberalism, it could be market socialism, it could be libertarianism, it could be authoritarianism.
            It’s no wonder your so angry and confused.

      2. Conservatives’ swell of joy deriving from the 2016 election is a scant triviality in the context of the pride and enjoyment experienced by America’s liberal-libertarian alliance throughout a lifetime of progress effected against the stale wishes and impotent efforts of vestigial right-wingers.

        Let’s toast another great decade or two of progressive improvement, Cy.

        1. “swell of joy deriving… scant triviality”
          Lol.

      3. And I repeat: thank God what’s her name lost.

    2. It’s “who are to blame”, not “who is”, Tony. Basic English grammar.

      1. Either/or in that case, but I eschew British tendencies, because I think they are all affected and pretentious.

        1. Tony hates America so much he does not even call it American English.

    3. As long as you’re being a pedantic grammar twit, you could try complete sentences, if that’s not too pretentious.

      1. I’m not being a pedantic grammar twit, I’m needling a cliche machine who always links to its stupid blog and is probably Russian. But it says it’s female so of course all you sex-deprived weirdos start throwing your capes in puddles.

        1. It’s not like you’re Shakespeare, and we tolerate your perversions without resorting to nerdy grammar bitching.

        2. No one gives a shit about him/her. We just all hate you Tony. Thisshould be obvious, even to a dullard, such as yourself. FFS, I regularly counsel you to do the right thing and commit suicide.

          Now go drink your Drano.

          1. Poor Tony has had two really bad years.

            His last comments are attempted bashing people for blog mistakes that they cant fix anyway because no edit button.

    4. They’re already printing the T R U M P

      1. They’re already printing the T R U M P 2024 shirts

        Nobodys waiting for anything.

  7. A wall is the mildest, most non-threatening way to control any border. Wall don’t chase people or shoot people or harm people in any way.

    A “police state” is closer to what we have now, with checkpoints on highways inside the border, because the protection at the border is so useless. There are also more police involved in everyone’s life because of the crime from illegals.

    A wall would increase liberty for Americans. It would probably also increase liberty for migrants, because those migrants are welcomed in Mexico and won’t have to live as outlaws there.

    1. Someone has convened a meeting of Libertarians for Bigoted, Authoritarian Walls!

      What a bunch of losers.

      Which part of ‘two years without a wall on the board, two more years on the way’ is difficult for goobers to comprehend?

      1. No argument from you. Just the usual shallow name-calling. Boring.

        1. The argument is that a wall is a childish pipedream animated by bigotry; that Trump has not only been unable to arrange a wall (let alone a Mexico-funded wall, which his gullible followers were dumb enough to expect) but indeed abandoned efforts toward a wall; and that no wall is going to be or should be built.

          Exciting enough for you?

          1. Even more boring. You’re a silly person.

            1. I’m silly. Yet you have been bending to my preferences throughout your lifetime and will continue to do so. Culture wars have consequences.

              1. Yeah, apparently the consequence is we end up with shitstains like you, Artie, who have a false sense of superiority. How’s life in your mom’s basement?

                1. Artie’s not allowed in his ‘mothers’ basement.

                  He’s not allowed to leave ‘her’ bathroom.

                  He’s ‘her’ toilet.

    2. You’re seriously deluding yourself if you think that a wall would do anything to decrease patrol presence at the border.

      And the notion that a wall would somehow “increase liberty for Americans” is laughable. My personal liberty is in no way contingent on building an actual wall across 2,000 miles of border.

      I am, however, all for reasonable immigration policies and modern, effective securement of the border that acknowledges the reality of the situation and isn’t just based in paranoid xenophobia, being stoked mainly by people who have never lived anywhere near a border state.

      1. ^ Exactly this.

          1. Troll

        1. Troll

      2. In other words, you made up a story about the future and you’re basing your opinion on that made up story. Ok, but why should anyone believe your made up story? There’s no good reason to believe your made up story over anyone else’s different one.

        Congrats on being for [a policy that’s not on the table] though. If it ever gets beyond fantasy, it might be worth a conversation.

        1. Put the pipe down, Ben.

          And if you were actually paying attention, instead of just selectively, you would know that a number of alternative options are currently on the table.

          1. Please explain how that’s true.

      3. Troll

    3. A wall would increase liberty for Americans.
      None of what you asserted can be logically concluded with this. You’re saying that we can either have a wasteful and ineffective wall with less police in “police state,” or we can have no wall and a “worse” police state. This is a false dichotomy, and, basically, you’re retarded or something. https://dl.asis.io/gbxEXTiL.gif

    4. Oh for goodness sake. Learn about walls through history. To be effective you need more people to man them. The wall itself can only slow down an invader and alert defenders of a breach.

      The barrier between Gaza and Israel is an active battle zone. It is one of the most thought out sophisticated defenses in the world currently. Perhaps the most. It is multi layered with sensors and cameras all along. Read a quote yesterday from one of the people who designed at built it. He said that without soldiers behind it a good size crowd would breach it in about 30 seconds.

      Any wall, the Great Wall of China, the Berlin Wall, the walls around medieval and ancient fortresses and cities. All of them designed so that defenders could quickly respond to any approach. They all failed eventually.

      1. A wall is more “effective” than nothing. A wall with a low level of supportive enforcement is more “effective” than no barrier with the same low level of enforcement. A wall with a gate is “effective” in leading people to be more likely to try to enter through the gate.

        A wall with enforcement at the wall doesn’t put Americans inside the border in contact with police. Rather it leaves them free to conduct their affairs.

        If a stadium had no doors and just sent ticket enforcers to pester everyone continuously, people would suggest “Hey, why don’t you put up doors and have 20 guys check tickets at the doors instead of having 150 guys roaming around making things worse for everyone.” And you would say “No, that will never work, because … idealogy or something…”

        1. So the US is 3.8 million square mile rock concert and all we need are a wall and ticket takers.

          Got it.

          1. No actual response then. Ok. Ideology wins, thinking loses.

            1. Half-educated, disaffected, gullible, bigoted rubes desire a wall. There is little thinking involved in that context.

          2. The fact that people like Lefties hate border security, means that the USA should do the opposite.

        2. Oh btw I was at the famous Who concert in 1979 when all of those people died. I know what happens when a crowd surges a barrier at a stadium.

          1. So the US isn’t a rock concert, but the US is a specific rock concert from 40 years ago? Make up your mind.

            1. No but your analogy doesn’t work. I am just conflating it further so you can see why.

              I gave at least examples of border walls past and present. The point being you are not going to save money on personnel cost by building one. You are going to increase cost.

              1. Pretend to optimize costs all you want. I’ll take enforcement at the border over enforcement everywhere in the country, for liberty reasons.

                1. You assume it would end enforcement “everywhere” in the country.

                  Now I know you’re delusional.

                  1. No I don’t assume that. That’s what the expenditure optimizers are saying. They say they prefer enforcement everywhere because it will save $3 (or something). I prefer enforcement at the border, even if it costs more.

                    Effective enforcement at the border will obviously lessen the need for enforcement inside the border though.

        3. A wall is more “effective” than nothing.

          Actually no. A wall costs money, maintaining the wall costs money, and that money could be better spent elsewhere (or perhaps not spent at all!).

          1. Everything is always bad by that logic. There’s always going to be somewhere putatively “better” to spend any time or effort anyone might spend on anything.

          2. Its worth the cost to finish a border wall on areas deemed easily passable.

            Thank God for this Constitutional Democratic Republic.

            1. This may be the appropriate solution in a few places. Most of the border would be better and less expensively policed by electronics, drones, and othe technology.

              Best would be to increase the ease and number of legal immigrants so that there are fewer illegals.

              1. The best thing would be everyone that wants to come to the USA respects our laws, since we Americans tend to be fairly freedom loving compared to the rest of the World.

        4. Here is the problem with your line of thinking.

          The methods required to make a physical barrier on the wall so absolutely impenetrable, as you imagine, so as to obviate the need for interior enforcement, would be utterly unacceptable to most Americans.

          Either it would be so ridiculously expensive, or it would involve using lethal force against unarmed Mexicans trying to cross the border.

          1. It doesn’t have to be perfect to be better than nothing. The “it won’t work perfectly” argument is also an argument against everything anyone ever did.

            We can make non-absolute choices. Really, we can.

            1. But your entire line of argument is that the wall would be so effective that there would be no need for interior enforcement of immigration law, thereby enhancing Americans’ liberties.

              Not only is it not realistically possible to create a border enforcement regime with a wall that is both effective and acceptable to public opinion, it still wouldn’t obviate the need for interior enforcement, since illegal immigration via walking across the border isn’t the major proportion of illegal immigration anyway!

              1. A wall will be more effective than no wall so there will be less need for interior enforcement. It gets better as the wall becomes a better barrier. Perfection is not necessary. We’ll never have zero interior enforcement because walls don’t prevent people overstaying their travel visas.

                Walls work. Not perfectly, because nothing is perfect.

                We only need some limits that mostly work. We aren’t very close to that. A wall gets us closer. Maybe close enough.

                1. A wall will be more effective than no wall

                  Only if that money would not be better spent elsewhere. And since illegal immigration by physically walking across the border is a minority of how people migrate here illegally, that is not at all clear.

                  1. I’ll take enforcement at the border over highway checkpoints for liberty reasons.

                    You can pretend to be able to optimize expenditures if you want.

                    1. Because illegal immigration via walking across the border is only a small percentage of illegal immigration, there are going to be highway checkpoints anyway, at least under the current immigration regime. If you argue “but if there’s a wall, there will be fewer highway checkpoints”, then maybe – but the wall comes with a large expense, and large maintenance costs, all of which constitute loss of liberty from taxpayers. So it’s not clear how the ‘balance of liberty’ plays out in this case.

                2. How dumb must one be to believe an investment in a wall would be a sound judgment?

                  Ben not only knows the answer; Ben is the answer.

                  1. As usual, zero substance from the Rev. The most boring person on any discussion forum.

            2. Since we are spending billions of people’s hard earned cash I hope there is a better sales pitch than that.

              I have no problem with increasing funding for border security. Sensors and drones, more agents so they can actually get there when it looks like people are crossing. There are lots of better ways to spend the money.

              What we really need is a better immigration system so it becomes more like getting tickets for a concert instead of the mess we have now.

              1. Then when funding is cut, the agents and drones disappear. But the wall still stands.

                1. Exactly. When you invest in a permanent structure you are stuck with it and the upkeep indefinitely.

                  When you invest in technology you are flexible and can adapt new or less expensive innovations or shift resources as needed. Even (Gasp!) spend less on something you may not need as much.

                  1. When you say “flexible”, it actually means you want to abandon border security as soon as possible. I prefer something less “flexible”, like a wall.

                    1. C’mon Ben.

                      You want a wall. You actually think it is the best way to manage the border given the fact that the money is not unlimited and comes from our hard earned dollars. So we do not agree. Wanna beer?

                      I think we can do better with the billions.

                      Welcome to the future.

          2. The Antifascister Mauer was utterly acceptable to 100% of all Stasi Germans. Berliner Zeitung, Neues Deutschland and Neue Zeit all published opinion polls like the ones that predicted Hillary would enforce the Carbon Tax and shut down power plants. And she would have too, were it not for those 4 million nasty libertarian spoiler votes!

        5. It is simply false to say that we currently have “nothing” if we don’t build this stupid wall. In fact, we have a number of serious border security measures in place, and in fact, illegal immigration HAS been in significant decline, for years. Sorry if that doesn’t fit the narrative that drives your ideology but look it up. Though you may need to actually go to a non-xenophobic nutbag source that actually does investigative journalism to find it.

          1. No wall is not nothing, you’re correct. I will amend by comment to say a wall is better at protecting the border than no wall.

            There’s no definitive count on illegal immigration. So yeah, it’s either high or low or medium or increasing or decreasing or staying the same, depending on who is saying so.

            But they surveyed residents of Honduras and Guatemala and more of them want to come here than the number that Americans want to allow. It follows that immigration must therefore be enforced. It’s better for our liberty if that enforcement happens at the border and affects people sneaking in than inside the country where it affects the rest of us.

            1. Sure but the Guatemalans and Hondurans are not sneaking. They are crossing and walking right up to the nearest border station to request asylum. Wall is not the issue for that group. The problem with them is we don’t have the resources to process them. It is not illegal to request asylum as you know.

              1. The ones who walk up from the Mexico side can stay in Mexico and be Mexico’s problem while they wait for a hearing. The ones who sneak in are our problem. A wall will help encourage the former and discourage the later.

      2. I like to add the Maginot Line to the list of failed structures designed to stop people and armies. But like the Trump with his wall, the French believed in it until it failed. Let us hope that keener minds prevail here. I don’t want to see the US Treasury end up like those who invested in the Trump Casino.

        1. What thing in history worked perfectly forever? Everything fails if you wait long enough. Therefore, no one should ever do anything.

          1. Especially a wall along the southern US border.

        2. The Germans went AROUND the Maginot line in June 1940.

          It took weeks for Germans to blast through Maginot Line protected areas and by then, the Maginot line had been effectively surrounded by emvelopment tactics.

          So (1) youre ignorant of history and (2) military defensive border forts are not the same things as a border fence to deter unarmed immigrant invading hordes.

  8. Trump’s not caving, he’s negotiating. If he were smart, he’d demand $25 billion – 5 for the wall and 20 to hire thousands of new employees for a new Border Watch agency. I can see it now, an army of cargo shorts-wearing earnest young men, women, and differently gendered, equipped with rape whistles and emergency iced cappuccinos, riding Segways slowly up and down the fence line, looking for brown people.

    1. Sounds like an Amazon fulfillment center.

    2. That’ll be his next idiotic “plan”. He’s always loved wasting other people’s money with no personal accountability. No reason to tap the breaks now when he can do it at gunpoint.

      1. “…He’s always loved wasting other people’s money with no personal accountability.”

        Bingo. You’ve effectively summed up this clown’s entire career in one sentence.

        1. That’s almost every politician ever.

          1. Also true. But it doesn’t change the fact that this guy was elected on the idea that he was going to “shake things up” and “drain the swamp.” The only thing he’s done since taking office is the same thing he’s ever done – drain the swamp right into his own pockets. And sell people a bunch of snake oil.

            1. Poor Lefties dont realize that their bad arguments provide support for Trump’s actions being the right move.

              If you say he is not draining the swamp…he is draining the swamp because his actions upset you so much, so he must be doing something right.

              1. I’m far from a “leftie” pal. The very fact that you think that if I don’t support Trump, therefore I must be a “leftie” speaks volumes about your one-dimensional thinking. Support the guy if you want, but don’t think that he speaks for all people who support conservative principles, by any means.

            2. “The only thing he’s done since taking office is the same thing he’s ever done – drain the swamp right into his own pockets.”

              How is Trump making money off his office? I’ve never seen any credible evidence of this.

              Trump is much more a guy who thinks he has all the answers or can quickly arrange a fix for problems, and who wants to give us the privilege of his wisdom and leadership. It’s ego, not cash.

      2. He’s always loved wasting other people’s money with no personal accountability.

        So does every other politician.

    3. That might get the public sector unions on his side. He probably would need to go a half trillion though.

    4. Trump’s not caving, he’s negotiating.
      This.

      Trump’s approach is like a market stall vendor or salesman. Start ridiculously high and work your way down to the price you wanted. This method of barter is understood globally, it’s cross-cultural and human.
      It’s only in the rarefied palaces of the Western ruling class and it’s Fourth Estate that this negotiation style is unusual.

      China understands what Trump is doing, so did North Korea, Mexico and Latin America, Africa, Russia and most of the Middle East, and it’s the reason he’s gotten farther than a lot of his predecessors.
      The rest of the world often views the Western ruling class with suspicion because it’s negotiation style seems opaque and conspiratorial to them. “What do they really want?” is a question often leveled at the West; but with Trump it’s obvious, and they know how to work with that.

      1. Uh huh. Sure. It’s 99th Dimensional Chess.

        1. “Uh huh. Sure. It’s 99th Dimensional Chess.”

          Indeed. If the foreign policy approach of someone who has absolutely no experience in foreign affairs or diplomacy appears to be non-sensical, it must be because he is thinking SO far beyond and ahead of the people who actually do have experience.

          Occam’s Razor could use a good sharpening…

        2. “Trump’s approach is like a market stall vendor or salesman”
          “Uh huh. Sure. It’s 99th Dimensional Chess”
          What the hell?

      2. That approach only works if you have a plan to walk away. More often than not the buyer will just go to the next stall.

        If that is all the deal master has up his sleeve we are surely hosed.

        1. More often than not the buyer will just go to the next stall
          They can’t exactly chose a different America further on down the row to negotiate with.

          1. They are not negotiating with America. They are negotiating with Google, Boeing, Ford, Harley-Davidson, my friend who is trying to get a contract in Canada for his small company, the whole list.

            Since when do libertarians favor government interference in those trade deals?

            1. Reducing corporate taxes from 35 to 21% was a huge boon to all these outfits. And the tariffs are changing the dynamic – mostly for the bad, so far – so, yes, they are all negotiating with America, in addition to the various companies.

      3. The Libertarian Party Central Committee could learn a lot from this approach to bargaining.

      4. Trump’s approach is like a market stall vendor or salesman.

        Son, I negotiate for a living. What Trump’s doing is the opposite of effective. He’s apparently lived his whole life hiring smarter people to do the tough dealing for him.

        Trump started out with a big, beautiful wall that the Mexicans will pay for. Didn’t get it. Congress was cuing up to give him $25 billion, in exchange for a DACA fix. Didn’t take it when he could have, then the courts took away his leverage. Then he almost got a face-saving $1.3 billion, but he turned that down when he saw what Limbaugh had to say he about it. So now what? He thinks he can get Congress to move up from $1.3 billion in order to get him to sign a government funding bill?

        At every step of the process, Trump has traded and re-traded, squandered his leverage, and issued empty ultimatums and threats. His own surrogates are out there muddying the waters on what they’ll accept. This is not how you get a deal you want. This is how you spike a deal with someone you don’t actually want to deal with.

    5. He could also save us a boatload of money by hiring undocumented mexican masons and paying them under the table to build the wall.

    6. Ya, while not a fan of government spending that doesn’t have sexual tension built in as a matter of function, I am a fan of guerrilla theatre and don’t think the full possibilities have been explored. Besides, having a lasting monument to the Great Orange One is the least we could do. Liberals could have pilgrimages to the wall to cover it in graffiti as atonement for the hubris and stupidity of this moment in American history. John Waters could put on benefit concerts across the entire length from wheelchair. Conservatives could visit in much the same fashion as going to Mount Rushmore, reverent in this symbol of American strength and prosperity. It’s win-win really, and could help draw the country closer together. Good fences make for good neighbors. I am also looking forward to the skulls mounted on top after the inevitable collapse. It’s all my Mad Max fantasies come to life.

      I think this whole debacle has been a failure of branding, which is surprising that Trump hasn’t picked up on this and tried some different approaches. Possible suggestions-

      1. 1.) Shovel (and ladders!) Ready program to further stimulate the economy and as an opening bid to bring back the CWA. Even Bernie Sanders would have to begrudgingly support this.

        2.) Declare the border an economic revitalization freezone. Minimal rules and regulations where intoxicant enthusiast could buy direct and enjoy themselves within a mile radius of the wall. Unregulated surgery centers and pharmacies would be possible. What happens at the border stays at the border. It beat shivering in the Nevada desert after puking up your guts.

  9. “I’m not at all a Beto fan?he seems to be a warmed-over version of a few decent, centrist ideas mixed with the worst instincts toward p.c. and for progressives to promise more and more free stuff to more and more people”

    Beto isn’t nearly as leftist as you imply. He’s the first Democrat I ever voted for and he has a relatively decent chance of being the next president.

    1. Judging by this post and others above, methinks your rhetoric would be more welcome over at Salon or Huffpost.

      1. Oh, I forgot. Fiscal conservatism and the lack of Trump support that naturally stems from it make one a leftist.

    2. He’s the first Democrat I ever voted for
      Hahahaha, oh wow.

  10. I guess my biggest question about the entire issue of border security is why congress gets a free pass by everyone? After all, it’s their laws Trump is enforcing, yet even they get to call him out for doing so. It’s weird to me that no one seems to be calling out Congress to fix immigration laws, they just demand the president not enforce them.

    1. I would certainly like to see the president not enforce a lot of laws but that doesn’t mean I let Congress off the hook for not fixing them. I’m not really talking about wall here, I agree it’s a waste of money, I’m talking about immigration/border enforcement in general.

      1. It’s almost like they would rather have the issue as a distraction rather than fix it, and I include the media in “they” as well.

    2. I suspect the Democrats don’t want to take responsibility for opening up the floodgates on immigration either.

      It’s easier to just call Republicans racist than it is to actually open up immigration.

      http://www.latimes.com/opinion…..story.html

      1. Well they certainly have had their opportunities to fix it and not only didn’t they do so, the media never brought it up when the dems held power. In fact, Obama continued enforcement with zero criticism.

        1. In fact, Obama continued enforcement with zero criticism.

          Kinda like the wars? GTMO?

  11. Congratulations to Reason for finishing #21 in conservative website traffic for 2018!

    Right behind The Federalist (RIP Bre) and just ahead of The Conservative Treehouse (better watch out this year “sundance” is gunnin’ fer ya!)

    Unsurprisingly,y’all cleaned Cato’s clock! Congrats again to the undisputed Queens of Cosmotarianism!

    1. That’s bound to change as soon as this left libertarianism thing really takes off.

    2. The best testament to the quality of Reason would be if it did equally terrible in rankings of both conservative AND liberal news outlets.

      1. BOTH SIDES

        Never gonna happen because “conservative news outlets” link and cite Reason-material and there is a significant “libertarian” subset ( a wing, even!) on the right while for the left libertarian (as a noun)* is just an alternative spelling of NAZI.

        *(libertarian as adjective occasionally appears in center-left policy-circles as a synonym for “centrally planned” or, more often, “subtly coercive”, much as it does here!)

        1. Left and Right were invented to replace communist and nazi in 1932, about a month before the Dems copied the Liberal Party repeal plank and defeated Bert Hoover (and all God’s Own Prohibitionists) in November of that year. Go to Google News Archive and search “right wing” or the other euphemism. Dating the Newspeak neologism is a surgically precise procedure anyone can duplicate by simple experiment.

    3. just ahead of The Conservative Treehouse

      Oh good heavens. That should be called “Conservative Nuthouse”.

      1. You’re not always wrong.

        1. *sniff* That means a lot coming from you!

    4. That top ten is pretty iffy. No particular issue with Drudge. No fan of Breitbart (Though I’ll admit I used to like Big Hollywood, it definitely went away from itself once Andrew died), The Daily Caller, or ZeroHedge. I used to like The Blaze and hope it’s still of reasonable quality.

      Then there’s just tons I don’t even know. I think I’m not that jacked into the system at large.

      1. I don’t think I’d ever seen or heard of The Western Journal. Maybe its traffic is all facebook-driven?

        ZeroHedge is indispensable infotainment.

    5. I noticed this article got a spot on Google News so someone is reading Reason

    6. Not to worry!

      I’m sure they’ll soon be able to squeak out a victory over the Weekly Standard.

  12. “The president’s commitment to increased physical barriers on the Southern border is dumb and he is smart to back down.”
    i.e.
    “41 was smart to back down on ‘Read my lips'”

    Trump is toast if he loses the base. It would be better for him to have Congress pass a veto proof budget.

  13. The best way to reduce “illegal immigration” is by immediately instituting a Koch / Reason approved 100% open borders / no deportations policy. Then nobody moving here would be breaking any laws! Any human being who wants to live in this country has a fundamental human right to do so. And as Shikha Dalmia has written, deporting people from the US is morally comparable to enforcing fugitive slave laws.

    Once Drumpf is out of office by 2021 at the latest, the new progressive / libertarian consensus on immigration will be clear. Perhaps the most positive political development of the Drumpf era has been the Democratic Party’s move toward the Koch / Reason position on immigration. Exciting young Democratic politicians like AOC are leading the call to #AbolishICE. And I’m confident whoever ends up being their 2020 nominee will include #AbolishICE and #NoBanNoWall among their central campaign promises.

    #OpenBorders

    1. That’s so complicated! We should just declare everyone in the world a citizen of the US!

      Policeman of the World.
      Welfare State of the World.

  14. ” A physical barrier across the Southern border, which would cost $28 billion to build and another $48 billion to maintain and operate during its first decade, is a really bad way to control illegal immigration flows (more on that later). ”

    “The short version? For starters, over the past several years, the vast majority of people who are in the country illegally actually came here legally and then overstayed work, student, or tourist visas. This is a shift from decades past but the number of entries made outside of legal checkpoints declined by 90 percent between 2000 and 2016, the latest year for which there is full data. ”

    Walls don’t work because visas.

    “If you want to control them, it’s time to turn to the “bells and whistles” of technology to find people who enter legally and then stay illegally.”

    Nick would be the first to shriek “Police State” if the government used any “bells and whistles” to find and deport illegals.

    But he is right on this.

    Building the wall is much less important than building the will to actually find and deport illegals.

    1. Has it ever occurred to you, that the reason why immigration law enforcement is the way it is, is because this is about the most that the public at large will tolerate?

      I reckon most people don’t view illegal immigrants on par with violent criminals like murderers and rapists. Instead they tend to view illegal immigrants more like trespassers. And they don’t support harsh or oppressive measures in order to track down trespassers.

      This is partly why the right-wing press has gone into overdrive these last few years to pump out story after story about illegal immigrants behaving badly, so as to create the false narrative that illegal immigrants as a group are horrible violent thugs.

      1. The only time I recall “The Public” ever given any direct choice over immigration policy was prop 187 in CA, in which Californians voted about 60/40 to ban illegal immigrant use of public services.

        Then the ruling class told the peasants to go fuck themselves and their representative self government too, declared the voters unconstitutional, and continued importing Leftist voters until CA was made a one party Leftist state.

        Turns out that states are people too.

    2. Nobody wants to eliminate visas. Our tech companies, research universities, teaching hospitals, labor workforce, all fight for those. Do not pick a fight with tourism that is a river of cash.

      So some people come and want to stay. They would like to be Americans. Why is the barrier so difficult for them.

      Look at the J-1 visa program. This is a visa given mostly to scholars, research scientists, and doctors in training. They get all of that training here. The best the US has to offer as a world leader. These are the folks you want.

      The terms are when you finish your years in the specified program, say you did 3 years in post doc immunotherapy research or
      medical residency with board certification, other technical skills, you have 30 days to leave the country.

      You have no work permit. Most go home and take the learning there. Well, you did a great job here.

      Some can find a path to stay because the government can employ you or there is the wonderful underserved areas option if you can snag one of those. Then you might get the coveted green card.

      1. People want to minimize immigration because look who it let in last time:

        Albert Einstein, Hans Bethe, John von Neumann, Leo Szilard, James Franck, Edward Teller, Rudolf Peierls, and Klaus Fuchs.

        You remember what those guys did. Right under our noses. With taxpayer money, no less!

  15. When Beato says “realistic immigration reform”, he means “fuck you Americans, the ruling class owns the country and we want more cheap labor”.

    1. Well, Beto is a billionaire, so it’s his country.

  16. The author mentions the cost to build and maintain a border wall but fails to mention the ongoing cost to feed, provide medical care, schooling, etc., for the 10 – 20 million Central and South American illegal aliens already here. And that’s just monetary costs for the law-abiding ones. A wall will not totally stop illegal immigration, for sure, but it will slow it down a lot – certainly enough to pay for itself.

  17. BILLIONS FOR DEFENSE!!! But not a cent for tribute…

    Since the only efficient, useful departments in the public sector are the police, military, DHS, SSA, and the VA we should cancel funding for social distribution schemes like WIC, SNAP, TANF, UNICEF, and green energy programs and transfer them to government organizations that actually do their jobs and protect the rights and needs of red-blooded Americans.

    America needs smart government now to pave the way for small government in the future. How are Cuck Gillespie and leftist-tarians like Ron Paul who oppose securing our borders going to feel when hordes of socialist welfare queens divert these useful, legitimate functions of state power toward their own selfish gains?

    1. Poor troll sock puppet.

      Its very upset at me for being against Socialism.

  18. Dammit. I was hoping the shutdown would hold until 2020.

  19. If walls don’t work why did Pompey and Caesar build them?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Pharsalus

    1. Caesar built those sneeze shields we see at salad bars.

      Get it – Caesar, salad?

      1. /sad trombone.

    2. Walls work when they are backed up by the credible threat of lethal force.

      There is no way that American public opinion will stand for US soldiers shooting at unarmed Mexicans at the border.

      1. I would.

        If the hordes of invaders continue and Congress refuses to enforce immigration law inside the USA, then use the US Military to defend our borders.

        1. You must be one of the libertarians Thomas Knapp claims to have “overheard” making politically incorrect comments about undocumented Saracen berserkers and locust-swarms of starving illiterate Latinos. Knapp deliberately infiltrated the Platform committee for the sole purpose of turning the migration plank into a demand for Uninspected Entry. This is on p. 5 of the August 2018 issue of LP News. The minority report wanted to simply change one word in the old plank, which was a good solution. But noooooo… Far better to spit on as many voters as possible!
          The fence is in the GOP platform, Gofundme has raised $10 MILLION in voluntary contributions to help build it, and the thing has been the most popular measure in Trump’s arsenal.

      2. I grant that there is a credible possibility that the US, and Western nations generally, would in the end lack the will to fight to preserve their civilizations if actually given a choice.

        But mankind has protected borders with credible threats of lethal force for thousands of years.

        We’ve backed other laws with a credible threat of lethal force, and still do. Government is a gun.

        Note we do not now simply shoot anyone who violates our borders, yet many who would come don’t, and we deport many who come without killing them. And occasionally we shoot someone, but it usually doesn’t come to that.

        American public opinion stands for US police shooting US citizens. They stand for US police disarming US citizens and leaving them helpless before criminals. They stand for US soldiers killing people around the globe. I wouldn’t count on the majority of Americans getting more upset over invading Mexicans being shot.

        1. lack the will to fight to preserve their civilizations if actually given a choice.

          Telling the military to shoot innocent civilians who have done nothing wrong IS throwing away our civilization.

          1. I’ll put you down for lacking the will to fight to preserve western civilization, because WrongFeelz.

            There are plenty more like you.

            The prevalence of people like you are the reason I said:
            “I grant that there is a credible possibility that the US, and Western nations generally, would in the end lack the will to fight to preserve their civilizations if actually given a choice.”

            1. For heaven’s sake. Mexicans don’t represent the end of Western Civilization. Petty tyrants like you who want to take away liberty from citizens in order to indulge your xenophobic fantasies are what represents the end of Western Civilization. The gift of the Enlightenment was the concept of LIBERTY. You know, like in the word “Libertarian”. YOU are the one fighting against Western Civilization, not me. I am the one wanting to protect both my liberty and yours.

            2. Buybuy, YOU represent the pre-Enlightenment, authoritarian past, not me. YOU are the one who places Guatemalans and Iraqis and other people from “shithole countries” as inferior beings who don’t deserve the blessings of liberty. This is the type of thinking that leads to imperialism, colonialism, slavery, religious crusades, and all of the other horrors of the past where one tribe of people who presumed themselves to be superior human beings and therefore justified in treating everyone else like garbage, up to and including literal chattel slavery.

              When you can bring yourself to acknowledge fully that Americans and Guatemalans and Iraqis and every other human being on the planet are equal in terms of their fundamental human liberty and dignity, then I may start to believe that you care about Western Civilization.

              1. Some people EARN the blessings of liberty. How many Bandana Republics have bothered to copy the U.S. Bill of Rights?

          2. Chemjeff, You and your Lefty buddies advocate for police to shoot innocent dissents of the Lefty Borg and our civilization is still around.

        2. The first workable definition of government, published in 1908, specifies a monopoly on harmful or coercive force “within a specific geographical area.” The height of stupidity has to lie in deliberate efforts to blur that distinction. This, incidentally, was what Britain, France and Germany demonstrated at Ypres in their 1914-18 squabbles over heroin cartel markets.

      3. The Mexicanos Gen. Pershing was sent after in 1916 weren’t exactly unarmed. But a fence could reassure some of our more trigger-happy and pants-shitting First Responders? that their “Marsy’s Law” privileges are not in mortal danger from starvelings. If the idea were to kill people, a Wichita, Kansas SWAT team at the border could do a better job of it than even Border Patrol Supervisor Juan David Ortiz of Texas. Heck, Mexico itself could have put such a fence to good use back in 1846!

    3. Because they were the best option at the time? That doesn’t mean the same solution is still the best option 2000 years later. I’m sure Caesar and Pompey would have given their left newts for automated webcams, infrared, night vision, instantaneous communication and everything else the Border Patrol currently has at its disposal.

      1. Sure. But….

        I hope you understand I was kidding around, right?

      2. Exactly. The Pentagon gave up research on stone forts and city walls about the time Lincoln skipped high school. At least I hope they did.

        1. Presume you mean the War Dept. and ,no, they didn’t. For example, Ft. Delaware, a stone fort, was still under construction at the time of Lincoln’s election. and still mounting active guns in WWI.

          1. Concrete now. We put up concrete walls, guard towers, and barriers all over Iraq.

    4. They were obviously Nazis. Duh.

  20. So, does this mean that any restrictions on immigration are wrong, or that we should focus on interior enforcement rather than limiting the number of people who illegally cross the border?

    1. Given that the largest share of current illegals arrived legally and over-stayed or otherwise violated their visa deadlines, maybe ICE can implant small explosive devices with the same expiration (get it!) date as the visa.

      1. Escape From New York did it.

        You can buy replicas at lifeclockone.com.

        https://lifeclockone.com/snakeedition/

  21. I just don’t see what the problem is with coming up with a measly few billion dollars – hasn’t Trump scrimped and saved a few bucks here and there he could use on the wall? Or did I miss the follow-up to this story on how things worked out? Is it possible Trump forgot what he said three seconds after the thought popped into his head and fell out of his face?

  22. Is this the same president who told us we need to rake the forests to prevent fires?

    I for one, have been to Home Depot to purchase my forest rake and am ready for duty.

    The man is a genius. Surely he knows more about border security than anyone.

    1. They should get him working on cold fusion.

      1. He has the energy problem figured out – it’s simple folks – hamsters.

        1. But only the best hamsters. Because he knows how to pick the best hamsters.

          1. Ummmm……..have you seen that thing he wears on his head? This most definitely is not a man who knows anything about rodents. Not to mention the Jeff Sessions thing.

    2. Trump was referencing fire fighters using a tool called a McCloud.

      It literally rakes brush away to clea fuel for fires.

      The media and its useful idiots at it again.

      1. Do they sell those at Home Depot or Lowes?

        I just got one of those metal rakes with a wood handle.

        We have a lot of trees here so just want to be ready.

        1. Home Depot sells them.

          Home Dept: Renegade McLeod Fire and Trail Tool with 43 in. Ash Wood Handle

          Amazon: Truper 33033 Tru Pro Forest Service McLeod Fire Tool, 48-Inch Ash Handle

  23. Like Snake Plisskin?

    1. Meant as reply to earth skeptic

  24. Poor Gillespie. He still has TDS so bad he doesnt know what is going on.

  25. If immigration is controlled at the border, how are Police State agents going to make up probable cause to harass people or how is the USA going to get a National ID forced down their throat?

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  27. The number of Cult45 sheep who have infested the Reason comment section never ceases to amaze.

  28. Beto also copies Hitler Platform plank #23, whereas Ted Cruz embarrasses Texans by gushing over Hitler plank #21. The tiebreaker for Texas voters is that Ted does not want a carbon tax or any other Global Warmunism. That settled the issue. The Libertarian candidate, Dikeman, kept blurting out his “concern” over Global Warming, which caused at least one libertarian I know to gleefully vote against him as an infiltrator.

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