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The GOP’s 35-Year Devolution on Immigration

Looking through Republican Party platforms on immigration, from Reagan-Bush to Trump-Carson

Out-of-touch elites. ||| WikipediaWikipediaOn April 23, 1980, the two leading Republican candidates for president—and the two people who would occupy the White House for the next 12 years—were asked a debate question about illegal immigration. The first candidate, George H.W. Bush, expressed support for giving illegal-immigrant children the same social-welfare benefits as native-born Americans, then portrayed the issue as one fundamentally about prohibition rather than lawlessness: "[A]s we have kind of made illegal some kinds of labor that I'd like to see legal," Bush said, "we're creating a whole society of really honorable, decent, family-loving people that are in violation of the law."

Ronald Reagan, meanwhile, championed a version of open borders: "Rather than talking about putting up a fence, why don't we work out some recognition of our mutual problems? Make it possible for them to come here legally with a work permit, and then, while they're working and earning here, they'd pay taxes here. And when they want to go back, they can go back. They can cross. Open the borders both ways."

It's the dignity, really. ||| CNNCNNThirty-five years later, that exchange (you can watch the video here) now reads like science fiction. Republican presidential candidates in 2015 are elbowing each other to see who can be the toughest against illegal (and often legal) immigrants. Donald Trump shot to the top of early primary polls after calling Mexican immigrants rapists and accusing the Mexican government of deliberately emptying its prisons into the U.S.; he then released a plan that would build a permanent border wall, triple the number of border cops, require every employer-employee contract to be vetted through a national database, end birthright citizenship, "impound" all remittance payments that are "derived from illegal wages," and institute a "pause" in the issuance of new green cards, for starters.

Trump's runner-up in early national polling, Ben Carson, wants to not just "secure" but "seal" the border. And not just the one with Mexico: "the northern border, the Pacific border, the Atlantic border, every border." Carson also wants to use drones against illegals, and end the 14th Amendment's scourge of "anchor babies," a policy goal shared by his fellow GOP competitors Ted Cruz, Scott Walker, Rand Paul, Rick Santorum, Lindsey Graham, and Bobby Jindal, at minimum.

How did the GOP progress (or regress, depending on your point of view) over four decades from a party whose two leading candidates—important 20th century political figures both—were immigration enthusiasts who opposed fences and praised illegal immigrants, to one whose two leading candidates (political novices both) deride illegals, seek massive walls, and wish to cut back on legal immigration as well?

One of Glenn's finest works. ||| BeckBeckRestrictionists will tell you that, well, times have changed, thanks in no small part to Reagan's 1986 amnesty, which was supposed to curtail illegal immigration but instead goosed it, leading to record numbers of immigrants legal and illegal alike. Immigration advocates will counter that times have indeed changed—but for the better, especially in Mexico, which is no longer sending migrants northward at anywhere near the same rates, in part because of increasing prosperity and lowered birth rates there.

Because immigration policy is actually difficult, involving massive components that are complex on their own (how many legal visas should be issued and in what category decided by whom; what to do about the existing population of illegals both in terms of overall status and day-to-day interactions with the state; how to deal with official and unofficial points of entry; and how to handle any of these issues without overly intruding on the rights of U.S. citizens), and because lawmakers and activists have for a decade made the foolish bet that these issues can only be dealt with comprehensively, in the same package; the unsatisfying status quo lumbers on, fueling suspicions that out-of-touch elites actually like it that way.

Whatever the explanation for how the issue has become a Republican litmus test, one that bends presidential candidates into fascinating new shapes, it is interesting to observe the shifts over time via the vehicle of presidential-year party platforms.

In 1988, for example, the GOP platform's immigration section contained all of 56 words, beginning with "We welcome those from other lands who bring to America their ideals and industry." Four years later the section was four times as long, and titled "New Members of the American Family." By 2008 the entry had swollen to 833 words, with the more martial title of "Immigration, National Security, and the Rule of Law" (there was an additional 100-plus words on "Ridding the Nation of Criminal Street Gangs").

Many of the issues making headlines in 2015, such as border walls and sanctuary cities and birthright citizenship, have showed up a time or two during the past 35 years of party documents, especially of late. Generally speaking, if a Reagan or a Bush was involved, the language is flowy and positive, and the negatives downplayed. Anyone else, and the gloves come straight off.

The following is a breakdown of, and quotations from, each GOP platform's immigration sections from 1980 to 2012:

---

He'll give away our JERBS!, that's what! ||| TimeTimeYear: 1980

Title: "Immigration and refugee policy"

Words: 256

Problems: Too many refugees worldwide.

Solutions: Vague ("coordinate plans for absorbing refugee populations with regional bodies," "adopt immigration laws and follow enforcement procedures which will fairly and effectively implement the immigration policy desired by the American people") but also welcoming ("an orderly approach to the great problem of oppressed people seeking entry, so that the deserving can be accepted in America without adding to their hardships").

Sample:

Residence in the United States is one of the most precious and valued of conditions. The traditional hospitality of the American people has been severely tested by recent events, but it remains the strongest in the world. Republicans are proud that our people have opened their arms and hearts to strangers from abroad and we favor an immigration and refugee policy which is consistent with this tradition. We believe that to the fullest extent possible those immigrants should be admitted who will make a positive contribution to America and who are willing to accept the fundamental American values and way of life. At the same time, United States immigration and refugee policy must reflect the interests of our national security and economic well-being.

---

I don't think you younguns appreciate just how weird 1984 was. ||| Pete SouzaPete SouzaYear: 1984

Title: "Immigration" (Reagan tended to get to the point)

Words: 198

Problems: Refugees redux, loss of "control of our borders," 1 million "illegal aliens" entering each year.

Solutions: "responsible reforms"!

Sample:

Our history is a story about immigrants. We are proud that America still symbolizes hope and promise to the world. We have shown unparalleled generosity to the persecuted and to those seeking a better life. In return, they have helped to make a great land greater still.

We affirm our country's absolute fight to control its borders. Those desiring to enter must comply with our immigration laws. Failure to do so not only is an offense to the American people but is fundamentally unjust to those in foreign lands patiently waiting for legal entry. We will preserve the principle of family reunification.

---

Not prudent. ||| SNLSNLYear: 1988

Title: "Immigration"

Words: 56

Problems: What problems!

Solutions: We just passed it!

Sample Whole Enchilada:

We welcome those from other lands who bring to America their ideals and industry. At the same time, we insist upon our country's absolute right to control its borders. We call upon our allies to join us in the responsibility shared by all democratic nations for resettlement of refugees, especially those fleeing communism in Southeast Asia.

---

Uh, do-over? ||| New EditionNew EditionYear: 1992

Title: "New Members of the American Family"

Words: 235

Problems: Illegal immigration, which "undermines the integrity of border communities and already crowded urban neighborhoods."

Solutions: Boost the Border Patrol, increase cross-border coordination, stiffen penalties for smuggling and document-fraud, and promote the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Sample:

Our Nation of immigrants continues to welcome those seeking a better life. This reflects our past, when some newcomers fled intolerance; some sought prosperity; some came as slaves. All suffered and sacrificed but hoped their children would have a better life. All searched for a shared vision—and found one in America. Today we are stronger for our diversity.

Illegal entry into the United States, on the other hand, threatens the social compact on which immigration is based.

---

Shit just got real. ||| MacheteMacheteYear: 1996

Title: "A Sensible Immigration Policy"

Words: 497, plus an addition 261 on protecting the flag and making English the official language

Problems: Do we have problems! Un-"manageable levels" of immigration, "asylum abuses," "false documents," and "crisis proportions" of illegal immigration which "burdens taxpayers, strains public services, takes jobs, and increases crime."

Solutions: Do we have solutions! End birthright citizenship, cut off government benefits for illegals "other than emergency aid," make the crimes of "domestic violence, stalking, child abuse, child neglect and child abandonment" deportable offenses for all resident aliens; make workplace sponsors of legal immigrants "legally responsible for their financial well-being," support California's Proposition 187, "balance the competing goals of uniting families of our citizens and admitting specially talented persons," expedite exclusion of false asylum claimants, "tighten border enforcement, speed up deportation of criminal aliens, toughen penalties for overstaying visas, and streamline the Immigration and Naturalization Service." 

Sample:

Republicans believe that by eliminating the magnet for illegal immigration, increasing border security, enforcing our immigration laws, and producing counterfeit-proof documents, we will finally put an end to the illegal immigration crisis.

---

That is not a good book cover. ||| Dee HockDee HockYear: 2000

Title: "From Many, One"

Words: 576

Problems: "lax enforcement of our borders," "tragic exploitation of smuggled immigrants."

Solutions: Boost the Border Patrol, split enforcement duties from the provision of visas, increase the number of visas for high-tech workers and low-skill farm laborers, give family-reunification priority to spouses and children, harsher penalties for smugglers and forgers, make English the official language, and protect the flag. Also: "Because free trade is the most powerful force for the kind of development that creates a middle class and offers opportunity at home, the long-term solution for illegal immigration is economic growth in Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean."

Sample:

To all Americans, particularly immigrants and minorities, we send a clear message: this is the party of freedom and progress, and it is your home. […]

We have reaped enormous human capital in the genius and talent and industry of those who have escaped nations captive to totalitarianism. Our country still attracts the best and brightest to invent here, create wealth here, improve the quality of life here. As a nation of immigrants, we welcome all new Americans who have entered lawfully and are prepared to follow our laws and provide for themselves and their families. In their search for a better life, they strengthen our economy, enrich our culture, and defend the nation in war and in peace. To ensure fairness for those wishing to reside in this country, and to meet the manpower needs of our expanding economy, a total overhaul of the immigration system is sorely needed.

---

2004 was an even weirder year. ||| Minority ReportMinority ReportYear: 2004

Title: "Supporting Humane and Legal Immigration"

Words: 487

Problems: "We must know the identity of all visitors who enter the United States, and we must know when they leave." Also, the economy needs labor.

Solutions: Boosting the Border Patrol, requiring biometric data at border crossings, upping workplace enforcement, stiffening penalties for smuggling and document-fraud, and deporting illegals without a hearing. Also, creating a new temp-worker program with eligibility for current illegals (see below).

Sample:

The Republican Party supports reforming the immigration system to ensure that it is legal, safe, orderly and humane. It also supports measures to ensure that the immigration system is structured to address the needs of national security. America is a stronger and better nation because of the hard work and entrepreneurial spirit of immigrants, and the Republican Party honors them. A growing economy requires a growing number of workers, and President Bush has proposed a new temporary worker program that applies when no Americans can be found to fill the jobs. This new program would allow workers who currently hold jobs to come out of the shadows and to participate legally in America's economy. It would allow men and women who enter the program to apply for citizenship in the same manner as those who apply from outside the United States. There must be strong workplace enforcement with tough penalties against employees and employers who violate immigration laws. We oppose amnesty because it would have the effect of encouraging illegal immigration and would give an unfair advantage to those who have broken our laws.

---

Never forget! ||| McCain 2008McCain 2008Year: 2008

Title: "Immigration, National Security, and the Rule of Law"

Words: 833, plus another 111 on "Ridding the Nation of Criminal Street Gangs"

Problems: "In an age of terrorism, drug cartels, and criminal gangs, allowing millions of unidentified persons to enter and remain in this country poses grave risks to the sovereignty of the United States and the security of its people. We simply must be able to track who is entering and leaving our country."

Solutions: "completing the border fence quickly," enhancing and broadening E-Verify, denying federal funds denial for "self-described sanctuary cities," deporting criminal aliens "without delay," "correcting court decisions that have made deportation so difficult," "securing the borders" and "our ports of entry," boosting the Border Patrol, "smarter" workplace enforcement, opposing driver's licenses and in-state tuition for illegal immigrants, making English the official language.

Sample:

We oppose amnesty. The rule of law suffers if government policies encourage or reward illegal activity. The American people's rejection of en masse legalizations is especially appropriate given the federal government's past failures to enforce the law.

---

Thanks for writing our platform, Mr. Arpaio! |||Year: 2012

Title: "The Rule of Law: Legal Immigration"

Words: 789

Problems: "In an age of terrorism, drug cartels, human trafficking, and criminal gangs, the presence of millions of unidentified persons in this country poses grave risks to the safety and the sovereignty of the United States. Our highest priority, therefore, is to secure the rule of law both at our borders and at ports of entry." Also, the administration's "backdoor amnesty program unrecognized in law" and "little regard for the life-and-death situations facing the men and women of the border patrol."

Solutions: Make E-Verify mandatory for every worker nationwide, double-layer the border fence, "mandatory use of the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (S.A.V.E.) program—an internet-based system that verifies the lawful presence of applicants—prior to the granting of any State or federal government entitlements or IRS refunds," give the Department of Homeland Security "long-term detention authority to keep dangerous but undeportable aliens off our streets," make gang membership a deportable offense, encourage state efforts to curb illegal immigration, deny federal funds to sanctuary cities and also universities that give in-state tuition to illegal immigrants.

Sample:

We recognize that for most of those seeking entry into this country, the lack of respect for the rule of law in their homelands has meant economic exploitation and political oppression by corrupt elites. In this country, the rule of law guarantees equal treatment to every individual, including more than one million immigrants to whom we grant permanent residence every year. That is why we oppose any form of amnesty for those who, by intentionally violating the law, disadvantage those who have obeyed it.

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  • Pro Libertate||

    Are we not men?

  • ||

    We are Devo!

  • Pro Libertate||

    You can't just fire up the Episiarch Signal and expect Aquaman to appear.

  • Jay Dubya||

    Where is John? Im hoping he can explain to us how Reagan and Bush Elder were really effette Cosmotarians.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Um, can we maybe replace the Episiarch signal with the Aquaman signal? The latter seems like he'd be more useful.

  • ||

    "Batman, free the hostages. Wonder Woman, talk to the President. Oh, and Aquaman...you go talk to some fish."

  • Agammamon||

    "And Epi, its almost time of PM links, so . . . go do that, I guess." "

  • *GILMORE*||

    "Form of....Giant Monkey!"
    "Form of.... Pail of Water!"....

    (batman looks at wonder woman and goes, "what the fuck. who said those were 'super powers'? this place is really sort of embarrassing sometimes. also, dont nemo and aquaman just do the same shit, i've never figured it out.")

  • Suicidy||

    What about Namor?

  • Chipper Morning Wood||

    It's time to flip the "isolationist" label and use it against the anti-immigration necons. What's more isolationist than trying to seal the border?

  • Libertarius||

    Way to cop a bullshit statist term for your own bullshit purposes there, bub. You guys are so fucking retarded on this subject, it's a whole lot of magical thinking and rationalization divorced from concrete reality (not to mention the right of a free people to enact a sovereign nation).

    Just this morning, I caught two Mexican tree trimmers squatting in my backyard, taking a siesta wherever the fuck they felt like it. I told them to get the hell off my property, and the little bastards acted like I was in the wrong! These people have no respect for property rights (except their own), importing them is sending this country down the toilet, and we have every right to say who can be a citizen here.

  • Eric||

    I'll one up you Libertarius. I came home and found two illegals screwing my dog and another my wife! Goddammed her insatiable appetites...first it was jazzmen and now Mexicans!

  • Eric||

    By "her" I mean my dog.

  • Paul.||

    Right, your wife, we got it the first time.

  • Chipper Morning Wood||

    Hey, I know those guys! They call themselves The Aristocrats.

  • Paul.||

    Donald?

  • Suicidy||

    Why is it so many people here to full retard on immigration? You may want a border less world, but guess what? EVERYONE ELSE HAS BORDERS. And absorbing the dregs of other country's populations by the millions is really not a good idea. We should, at the very least, take a break from incoming uneducated indigents and sort out what we have now. And maybe send the violent felon illegals packing for good.

    I'm for immigration. The kind that benefits ME as an American citizen and enhances our society. I'm sick of everything being a big fucking giveaway that my ass has to pay for. And if any of you don't like it, then fuck you in your fucking assholes with the prosthesis from 'Seven'.

  • Arthur45||

    "isolationists " is one who doesn't wish to get involved with other countries policies. This has nothing to do with immigration or emigration.

  • IceTrey||

    Solving illegal immigration from the south is easy. First end the War on Drugs to extinguish the violence, then use moral suasion to convince the southern governments to respect the individual civil and property rights of their citizens so they can build a life there instead of coming here. A big part of the problem is people who came here legally and never left. Ending birthright citizenship would help with that.

  • PapayaSF||

    then use moral suasion to convince the southern governments to respect the individual civil and property rights of their citizens

    Easy-peasy!

  • Paul.||

    Hate to agree with you here, but uh, yeah, if we can't get 'Murrica to respect property rights, not sure we'll have a great negotiating position with foreign governments.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Actually it's even easier than that. If "illegal" immigration is the problem, then just change the laws to make it easier for people to come (and go) legally, and tailor the documentation to their needs, not assuming that everyone is going to be tied to one job forever or even that they want to stay in America forever.

  • PapayaSF||

    Which does absolutely nothing to deal with the burden these immigrants bring to welfare systems, schools, hospitals, jails, roads, and (in California right now) water. Hugh, we just don't need millions more low-skilled workers. We have more than enough right now.

  • Hugh Akston||

    First, making it easier to come also makes it easier to leave. So if there really is no need (demand) for them (which there absolutely is), they'll just move on to where they can find more opportunity.

    Second, immigrants are not the problem with the various government-run institutions. The government running them is the problem. Vulnerable people trying to improve their economic and social fortunes are a convenient scapegoat for simplistic morons who lack either the will or the desire to address the actual problems.

  • Libertymike||

    The means supported by those who want their wall and their deportations, are totalitarian. Said otherwise, they want to make the warfare state bigger in order to save their welfare state.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Well put.

  • PapayaSF||

    A wall and deportations are no more "totalitarian" than you kicking an unwanted guest out of your house and locking your front door.

  • ||

    Ahahahahaha, there is nothing better than the utterly mendacious "private property and national borders are the same thing". I love when you bust this chestnut out, it's such a wonderful indicator of how full of shit you are.

  • PapayaSF||

    They aren't "the same thing," but the analogy has validity. A nation without control of its borders isn't really a nation.

  • LynchPin1477||

    I'm all for border control. Let's control our borders by making it easier for people to cross using the proper channels so we can focus on screening them. We'll also make it easier to identify the people who are still sneaking for nefarious purposes.

  • Mickey Rat||

    I believe it was orginally an snswer to the mendacious "why should we respect imaginary lines" trope open borders people used to trot out regularly.

  • Chipper Morning Wood||

    That's the most retarded analogy I ever heard. Unless you are claiming that the federal government owns all our shit and we are living in a state-owned paradise. What is that called again?

  • Gomerphobe||

    Government property is co-owned by the citizens, so it is their choice what to do with it.

  • pronomian||

    It is interesting to read that many believe the policies of the 80s are the same now. "We believe that to the fullest extent possible those immigrants should be admitted who will make a positive contribution to America and who are willing to accept the fundamental American values and way of life. At the same time, United States immigration and refugee policy must reflect the interests of our national security and economic well-being."

    I fully agree and how do we know those being admitted will make a positive contribution? It's called legal immigration.

  • pronomian||

    Friedman in his treatise against the welfare state but is apropos to this debate:

    "Why is it that free immigration was a good thing before 1914 and free immigration is a bad thing today? Well, there is a sense in which that answer is right. There’s a sense in which free immigration, in the same sense as we had it before 1914 is not possible today. Why not?

    Because it is one thing to have free immigration to jobs. It is another thing to have free immigration to welfare. And you cannot have both. If you have a welfare state, if you have a state in which every resident is promises a certain minimal level of income, or a minimum level of subsistence, regardless of whether he works or not, produces it or not. Then it really is an impossible thing."

  • pronomian||

    Get rid of the welfare state then open the borders. Have fun with the first part.

  • PapayaSF||

    Exactly. The order in which these things are done is crucial.

  • ||

    Every resident does not have to be a citizen. There is no reason for uncitizens to be allowed to avail themselves of all the benefits available to citizens.

  • Suicidy||

    We don't have 'immigration'. We have squatters. Millions of them. If we had 1914 style controlled inflow of immigrants and no welfare state things would be a lot different.

  • pronomian||

    They leave their country hoping to get a job, knowing they will be taken care of, something that will not happen in their country. I have no problem to open the borders for people who know they have a job and know they will have to take care of themselves. It is naive to believe one can have open borders in a welfare state and not suffer the consequences. Socialistic European countries are having to deal with this and some are shutting their doors.

  • LynchPin1477||

    Which does absolutely nothing to deal with the burden these immigrants bring to welfare systems, schools, hospitals, jails, roads

    If they are documented and here legally they can pay taxes to support those things.

    we just don't need millions more low-skilled workers

    No one needs 20 million types of low-skilled workers.

  • Careless||

    If they are documented and here legally they can pay taxes to support those things.

    But not enough. The average illegal immigrant doesn't pay enough in taxes in an entire working life to pay for his kids' education, let alone all the other services used

  • kbolino||

    Which does absolutely nothing to deal with the burden these immigrants bring to welfare systems, schools, hospitals, jails, roads, and (in California right now) water.

    Apart from federal welfare programs, every one of those is a state responsibility. Unless there's a federal court ruling that state services must be provided to non-citizens, I'm failing to see why this is a federal problem. I'm not sure "my state's voters are too fucking stupid" is a compelling reason.

    Hugh, we just don't need millions more low-skilled workers. We have more than enough right now.

    "We" don't "need" 23 brands of deodorant. Didn't you know children are starving?

    This is patently fallacious, you've been called on it a ridiculous number of times, and yet you keep trotting it out. There are dozens of sound arguments to be made (and debated) vis-a-vis immigration, but the economics of it is not one of them. Saying that immigration must be controlled for the purpose of affecting wages, prices, employment, or any other economic outcome is just central planning by another name.

  • kbolino||

    (cont'd)

    In the marketplace, the balance of supply and demand is the organic product of millions of people engaging in millions of transactions. No government bureaucrat nor Internet commentator is fit to set those levels. The right price is the one that a buyer and a seller agree to. The knock-on effects like price and wage trends are the inherent result of the spread of information.

    TAANSTAAFL; suppressing migration for the purpose of inflating wages and prices is not free. It is no different than saying that forced unionization was good for the American worker, or Walmart should be penalized to prop up Mom & Pop's. Enshrining some people's economically illiterate preferences into law must always come at the expense of some other group. The part that you seem unable to comprehend or unwilling to admit is that many of the people affected are native-born Americans and not foreigners. Inflated wages and prices have consequences for more than just immigrants.

    Crime, welfare, culture, voting, and all sorts of other factors have serious implications when it comes to immigration, and the effects can certainly bleed over into economics. But there is no case to be made, except by the disingenuous, elitist, or self-serving, against the economics of immigration ceteris paribus.

  • Careless||

    Unless there's a federal court ruling that state services must be provided to non-citizens,

    And indeed, there's at least one, Plyer v Doe.

  • bassjoe||

    It's very difficult to deny non-citizens government services under the Constitution. There are very few provisions granting specific rights to citizens so; the "equal protection under the law" provisions are universal.

  • Peter Verkooijen||

    Just make immigrants ineligible for those "welfare systems" and pay for other services in cash or via taxes.

  • IceTrey||

    That's called the Visa Waiver Program and a lot of foreigners abuse it.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Are you joking or just high? The VWP excludes people from either country that America shares a border with and explicitly forbids people who use it to be paid by an American company or study at an American school.

  • Not a Libertarian||

    That cannot be a solution as it does offer votes to immigrants, and that is the point, no?

  • Agammamon||

    1. End the war on drugs.

    2. Expand the temporary work and residency permit programs.

    3. Then you don't need to worry about convincing another nation to change its institutions, nor do you need to end birthright citizenship.

  • Agammamon||

    But that's the pussy way to do it.

  • Suicidy||

    If these pool coming here illegally are so great, then how come Mexico (among others) are working so hard to not take them back?

  • Suicidy||

    'People'

  • In League with the Dark Ones||

    Solving illegal immigration from the south is easy.

    Indeed… it would involve economic growth in Latin America to the point where being upper middle class in Latin America isn't comparable to being upper lower class in the US. When people can make a good living in Latin America, they won't look to America as the place to make easy money.

    In the 1930s, people thought Puerto Rico was going to empty out into the mainland US. It didn't — when Puerto Rico's per capita GDP hit about ⅓ of the US's, people started staying in Puerto Rico and taking jobs there.

    First end the War on Drugs to extinguish the violence,

    Great start. Millions of Latin Americans no longer having to worry about being arrested or shot trying to make ends meet by supplying the US with goods Americans want.

    then use moral suasion to convince the southern governments to respect the individual civil and property rights of their citizens so they can build a life there instead of coming here.

    An easier way would be to allow them to sojourn here. That would entail making it legal to come to the US legally, work here legally, and go back home when they've decided they have enough money to live like kings at home for a while. When the money runs out, they can come here again legally, work here again legally, and go back again when they've earned enough money.

  • Suicidy||

    If Mexico had to actually deal with their lower class and not send so many of them here to avoid it. The maybe there might be some meaningful reform. Which shouldn't be too hard since Mexico is an oil exporting nation and is quite capable of taking care of itself if run properly.

  • Careless||

    In the 1930s, people thought Puerto Rico was going to empty out into the mainland US. It didn't

    Most Puerto Ricans live in the mainland.

  • Woodchipper of the Apocalypse||

    Yeah, Puerto Rico doesn't seem like a good example. Although this is coming from me, a person who lives in a metro with one of the highest concentrations of Puerto Rican people in the US.

  • Woodchipper of the Apocalypse||

    Also, the net population of Puerto Rico has been negative since the 80's.

  • In League with the Dark Ones||

    A big part of the problem is people who came here legally and never left.

    That's, ironically, the result of making it tougher to sojourn in the US. When it's difficult to go home and then come back to the US when the money runs out, people tend to stay here where you don't have to bribe the government water agency worker to turn your water on and to keep it on. If we make it easy to come back legally here after go back after making enough money to live on, suddenly, Latin America will be filled with people with money who can start to think about having an easier life without the bribes and start demanding that their government respect their rights and stand up for them against corruption. Once that happens, the economy in Latin American countries will grow and Latin Americans will have opportunities for good paying jobs at home instead of looking to the US for jobs.

  • Sanjuro Tsubaki||

    Probably a little easier said than done. Uncle Sam has burned too many bridges. But you're still right.

  • ||

    the unsatisfying status quo lumbers on, fueling suspicions that out-of-touch elites actually like it that way

    Uh...ya think? The politicians have learned that mostly prosperous, bored people would prefer to argue over KULTUR WAR and REGION WAR and JERB WAR because it's more interesting--more like watching sports--than actually dry stuff like...oh, massive debt or an education bubble or whatever. They've learned that harping on issues that people are emotional about--but that may have very little actual impact on their lives--will get them far more excited than talking about things they aren't emotional about.

    That's what the current bombast from the GOP is. It's the candidates fighting to plant their flag in the right place with the most emotional issues for a lot of the base. And on the Dem side, Bernie Sanders is doing the same thing.

    This is modern, social signaling, emotion-driven politics. Get used to it.

  • ||

    They've learned that harping on issues that people are emotional about--but that may have very little actual impact on their lives--will get them far more excited than talking about things they aren't emotional about.

    Episiarch, I don't use the word 'hero' lightly, but you are the greatest hero in American history.

  • ||

  • Libertymike||

    Have you looked at what's happened to you?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Someone did a web reboot of Greatest American Hero, and it is indistinguishable from the non-sex parts of a porno.

  • Libertymike||

    I didn't click Epi's link but you and I know that it features either the song or the TV show in some bizarre twist.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    No, when they actually have ideas on real issues, they will say so. Reagan went on about the Soviet threat and big-government at home. He also promoted the prolife cause.

    It's when politicians have nothing useful to say that they try the distracting tactics, especially when their policies visibly suck and there's no way to conceal the suckiness.

  • Rhywun||

    harping on issues that people are emotional about

    I guess that explains why Deblasio's first local action after pushing his leftist agenda around the country for months is holding emergency meetings to discuss how to get rid of the topless grifter chicks in Times Square.

  • Paul.||

    You don't consider topless grifter chicks an emergency? Pics or it isn't happening.

  • Rhywun||

    Um... enjoy?

  • SIV||

    The first candidate, George H.W. Bush, expressed support for giving illegal-immigrant children the same social-welfare benefits as native-born Americans


    Pappy Bush extends welfare eligibility, W Bush extends welfare eligibility, Jeb! ?

    The important lesson is always:

    "Stay out the Bushes!"

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Since then, the war on drugs has been ramped up by what? A factor of 10? 50?

    It's our (the US Government, not "our") fault that those countries are so fucked up.

  • kbolino||

    I'm curious, is the CIA still up to its old tricks south of the border?

    I think you could make the case when the US was deposing governments left and right that we had a hand in a lot of the troubles in Latin America. The communist guerrillas deserve no small share of the blame too, though.

    But today? Apart from lingering effects, some diplomatic shenanigans, and that whole "put a bunch of guns in the hands of criminals" thing the ATF did, I'm not seeing the massive hand of US geopolitical influence in Latin America's problems.

    The common refrain is that America's drug war is fueling crime outside of the US, which is undoubtedly true, but that doesn't explain the difference between those other countries and the US. It's not like Americans in the US get any reprieve from the enforcement of drug laws.

    The drug war abroad compounds a longstanding problem that has never been addressed, which is that the default mode of government in Latin America is one step shy of communism. If the people weren't so fucking poor all the time, then making money off of Americans' drug habits wouldn't have the same appeal that it does now.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    The CIA is largely focused elsewhere now. But the DEA, Coast Guard, and Navy have essentially conscripted Mexican law enforcement on the local, state, and federal levels. Either the cops are working as agents of the US, or as agents of the cartels.

    The brain drain is ongoing, and devastating to their economy. If you're educated and talented, you're gonna get called upon by the cartels. "Plata O Plomo" (money or the bullet). There's a reason it's hard to find (living) telecom engineers in Mexico.

  • kbolino||

    Either the cops are working as agents of the US, or as agents of the cartels.

    Or both. I don't doubt that we play a hand in these problems, especially in Mexico near the border, but again the same potential for profit exists domestically. The negative effects of the criminalization of drugs don't explain the disproportionate outcomes in different countries. Perhaps it is the greater impunity with which US law enforcement and intelligence agencies act outside of their own country's borders, but I would like to see those dots connected better.

  • Calidissident||

    Well, the size and wealth of the US makes it the most attractive market for producers, traffickers, and dealers to target.

  • kbolino||

    The size and wealth of the US aren't just random attributes that fell out from the great sorting algorithm in the sky. The desirability of the market is reflective of the economic disparities, but those disparities are not immutable properties of the universe. The primary obstruction standing between most of Latin America and greater prosperity is their own government.

  • John||

    To a large degree yes.

  • Jay Dubya||

    There you are! Why so quiet, John?

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Well, sure, back in the day the GOP wanted to brag to the world how great America is. Now they just want to hide our shame. But more importantly, there was a change back in the day immigrants would vote Republican. Not so much today.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Change. That's odd, the c isn't really all that close to the g on the keyboard. Even less so on this homemade keyboard I designed.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Who am I? Gilligan?

  • Almanian - Trump's Woodchipper||

    I thought you were the Professor, and Episiarch is Gilligan?

    I am SO confused now...

  • ||

    Dude...I'm obviously the millionaire. I even sound like him sometimes.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    You're into being cuckolded by a tag team of Gilligan and the Skipper?

  • DenverJ||

    I would've guessed Mary Ann.

  • ||

    Who gets to be the girl?

  • PapayaSF||

    Quantity matters, Mr. Welch. When a few million becomes tens and scores of millions, the problem changes and intensifies. Look at the Camp of the Saints situation that's happening in Europe now, which will only get worse as the population of Africa continues to skyrocket.

  • ||

    The foreign devils are going to get us! Enter pants-shitting mode! Form of...adult diapers!

  • Hugh Akston||

    Immigants! I knew it was them! Even when it was the bears I knew it was them!

  • ||

    "He's not meltin', he's chillaxin'. If you can't speak the language, go back to Mexico. Where you were born, and are from."

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Let the immigrants pay the immigrant tax!

  • John||

    There are people in the world even someone like you doesn't want to meet. Most places on earth suck and they suck because the people who live there suck.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    There are people in the world even someone like you doesn't want to meet. Most places on earth suck and they suck because the people who live there suck

    So just to be safe, let's collectively guilt every person who happens to have the wrong skin color.

    Even though the vast majority aren't guilty of any crime other than being poor and not knowing English, all things that a century ago people said about Jews, Slavs, Germans, Italians and Greeks.

  • John Titor||

    There are people in the world even someone like you doesn't want to meet. Most places on earth suck and they suck because the people who live there suck.

    This might be an argument if America did anything to clean up its own local shitbag population. Instead they elect them President. Over and over again.

  • paranoid android||

    Even though the vast majority aren't guilty of any crime other than being poor and not knowing English, all things that a century ago people said about Jews, Slavs, Germans, Italians and Greeks.

    I've said it before and I'll say it again, I have yet to encounter an anti-immigration type whose arguments are anything but reheated leftovers from the Know Nothings.

  • Almanian - Trump's Woodchipper||

    It really is time for the Know Nothings again

  • Jerryskids||

    'Happens' to have the wrong skin color? I assumed he was talking about New Jersey. "Orange' is not a skin color you just 'happen' to have.

  • Libertymike||

    Eh, you mean you have never seen the Speaker of the House?

  • In League with the Dark Ones||

    From the 12th annual report of the New York chief bakery inspector (1898):

    “It is almost impossible to secure or keep in proper cleanly condition the Jewish and Italian bakeshops. Cleanliness and tidiness are entirely foreign to these people, and their bakeshops are like their sweatshops, for like causes produce like effects."

  • Libertymike||

    Hmm.....the tie between bigoted progressivism, unionism, and the New York State Bakeshop Act.

  • PapayaSF||

    all things that a century ago people said about

    "They said Galileo was crazy! They said Einstein was crazy! They said my Uncle Herbie was crazy!"

    "Who was your Uncle Herbie?"

    "Oh, nobody. He really was crazy."

  • DenverJ||

    Even though the vast majority aren't guilty of any crime other than being poor and not knowing English, all things that a century ago people said about Jews, Slavs, Germans, Italians and Greeks.

    Well, as a Pollock, I'll attest that the Slavs are not people you want in your country.

  • Cliché Bandit||

    As a Pollock, I would have assumed you would have said Germans.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    The young hot ones can still come over though, right?

  • Libertymike||

    If they have had vasectomies!

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Tragically, due to that Russian adoption ban enacted a few years ago, in 15 years we will no longer have nubile adopted Russian girls walking around our nation's college campuses.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    When will people learn?!?! DEMOCRACY DOESN'T WORK!!!!!

    /Homer, I forget which episode

  • Sevo||

    Homer?
    I thought that was Euripides!

  • Libertymike||

    Kakoy Pozor!

  • Pan Zagloba||

    Look, putting Russian women into US universities will just ruin them forever. Import them once they finish school over there, for God's sake! Then they'll know how to dress, act and (mrawr) walk in a feminine manner!

  • kbolino||

    Somewhere along the way we lost perspective. Every place has horrible people and not-so-horrible people. We went from "let the horrible ones rot" to "find the horrible ones and kill them" to "embrace the horrible people and their unique culture".

  • Hugh Akston||

    it probably started when some asshole put that "bring me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses" graffiti on the Statue of Liberty.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    I blame the French.

  • DenverJ||

    You know who else blamed the French?

  • kbolino||

    There's nothing wrong with the sentiment. The problem is a lot of people have translated it into "bring me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses so that I might foist them on other people". It's perfectly fine to say you want to help the needy (although you should help them to help themselves if you want it to be meaningful and lasting); it is entirely another to say you want to conscript your fellow man to do the task.

  • SIV||

    Most places on earth suck and they suck because the people who live there suck.

    New England, for example.

  • kbolino||

    Quantity is more symptomatic than causal. The circumstances certainly have changed somewhat since the 1980s, but not because of the numbers per se. The entire political climate has shifted, and not for the better.

  • Lee G||

    That home construction boom fueled by record low interest rates in an effort to stave off the effects of the dotcom bubble bust (fueled by low interest rates) wasn't going to build itself.

    Perverse incentives have perverse outcomes

  • Rich||

  • Overt||

    Immigration advocates will counter that times have indeed changed—but for the better, especially in Mexico, which is no longer sending migrants northward at anywhere near the same rates, in part because of increasing prosperity and lowered birth rates there.

    Oh come on. I am getting a little sick and tired of this dishonest debating style from otherwise decent Reason writers.

    If you look at the immigration trends, they entered a decline towards the end of 2007- the beginning of the Great Recession. Prior to that, the rate of illegal immigration was essentially the same for 20+ years. I just did a search and the numbers are roughly the same between both pro and anti restriction sites.

    This is nuts. I have never seen a serious commenter say the recent declines in immigration are due to anything but the terrible job climate- which hit Mexico just as well as the US.

    Perhaps it is my experience as a debater in high school, but I can't stand it when people- especially those on my side of the debate- try to get away with shoddy arguments. It is possible to acknowledge that Amnesty helped increase the incentive to immigrate and still carry a persuasive case without inventing shit out of thin air.

  • Hugh Akston||

    The UN Human Development Index for Mexico has risen steadily since 1980.

  • Libertymike||

    Come on, give creating shit out of thin air a chance.

  • Jay Dubya||

    "Perhaps it is my experience as a debater in high school"

    We concede you are truly a Master Debater.

  • kbolino||

    The two factors don't exclude each other. I'd like to see a more serious treatment of the subject, but just pointing to a different factor doesn't prove dishonesty.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Maybe we can make it easier for people to emigrate here legally by, I don't know, streamlining the process so that it doesn't cost thousands of dollars and many years to get through?

    That and ending the War on Drugs would do much to ameliorate the problem.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Mandatory vaccines and butt sex!!

  • Gomerphobe||

    Sure, and I think nearly everyone can get behind that but you would need to do a couple things.

    1. Actually screen immigrants, which would mean preventing them from just going around your screening counter.

    2. Have a way to get rid of the people that skip your screening process.

    And since either of those is a no no in the minds of many people it doesn't matter. You're a racist.

  • kbolino||

    That is what CBP and ICE are already supposed to be doing. They have substantial budgets and large payrolls to accomplish those tasks. That they have proven to be failures (mostly--maybe they're stopping terrorists) is as much about political interference as any inherent incompetence, but ultimately no major structural reform is likely to happen one way or another. There isn't going to be an honest immigration policy until voters demand it, and right now honesty is the last thing on any politician's mind.

  • XM||

    If I'm not mistaken, in the 1980's San Francisco was in play for the Republicans. California voted for Reagan.

    Things have obviously changed since then. Immigration has increasingly became less of an issue for immigrants while many of them turned wildly left on economic issues. If immigrants were interested in limited government AND open borders, then libertarianish candidates would win with great frequency.

    This is a little quirk of libertarian that amuses me constantly. On immigration, they'll urge the GOP to "get with the times or perish", even though candidates (Mccain) hat follow their advice make very little gains. But on spending and budgetary issues, they warn the GOP to stand tall and fight, even though immigrants and other emerging demographic generally favor big government. The last GOP president to score even 40% Latino voters was George Bush, among the biggest spender of our time.

    You can't tell an immigrant "you may come to our nation without restriction and oversight, but we will grant you no wage protection and will only give you sensible welfare benefits. If there's someone who wants to hire you for 3 dollars an hour, that's his right" and expect to his win support from him. Works for us, not to him, most of the time.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    OK, re anchor babies - I used to think "lol, those paranoid right-wingers, thinking furrin wommin are coming to the U.S. to pump out anchor babies, how paranoid can you get!"

    Then I learned - sometimes from H&Rcommenters; - that there actually *are* lots of women like that.

    That happens a lot - "ha ha, that silly right-wing talking point!" "but there's evidence that..." "la la la I can't hear you...that silly right-wing talking point!"

    As far as addressing the issue - why not say that if your parents are U.S. citizens or green-card holders, you get birthright citizenship, otherwise you have neither citizenship nor residence rights except those you have through your parents, and if they're deported you get deported with them. Bingo - family reunification!

    The point of birthright citizenship in the 14th Amendment was to make clear that native-born black people are citizens - and thereby entitled to the protection of the Privileges and Immunities Clause (which you guys may have heard of). I don't think giving a loophole for illegal immigrants was what the framers were thinking of, and in any case a constitutional amendment could clarify things.

  • paranoid android||

    That happens a lot - "ha ha, that silly right-wing talking point!" "but there's evidence that..." "la la la I can't hear you...that silly right-wing talking point!"

    Yeah, except the specific right-wing talking point re: anchor babies is that the parents have babies over here and then they can't be deported and get to keep the whole family here forever, which is a lie.

  • Calidissident||

    The right-wing talking point still isn't accurate. The women who do that are not poor illegal immigrants from Latin American. They're mostly wealthy Chinese women who legally enter the US, have the kid, and go back to China. Also, the kid cannot sponsor them for entry into the country until they are 21. The same goes for kids of illegal immigrants. Having a baby here does not mean you will not get deported.

    "The point of birthright citizenship in the 14th Amendment was to make clear that native-born black people are citizens - and thereby entitled to the protection of the Privileges and Immunities Clause (which you guys may have heard of). I don't think giving a loophole for illegal immigrants was what the framers were thinking of, and in any case a constitutional amendment could clarify things."

    Jus soli has been the standard for pretty much the entirety of US history. The Supreme Court affirmed that 6-2 in 1898, referencing court cases from 1844 and 1812. One of which recognized the citizenship of a child of a woman who was just temporarily visiting the US. Slaves got excepted from this for obvious reasons, hence the 14th Amendment, but the general policy of jus soli has been the case for US history, and is in line with the practice of virtually every other country in the Americas.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "the kid cannot sponsor them for entry into the country until they are 21."

    So if Mom and Dad live long enough, their anchor baby *can* sponsor them?

    "Jus soli has been the standard for pretty much the entirety of US history."

    A constitutional amendment can either switch us to a system of the child's citizenship following that of Mom and Dad, or it can just make an exception to jus soli - if Mom and Dad are illegal immigrants you can't get birthright citizenship.

  • Calidissident||

    "So if Mom and Dad live long enough, their anchor baby *can* sponsor them?"

    Which group are you talking about? The Chinese birth tourists or the illegal immigrants living here? If it's the former yes. But I don't see why the occasional elderly rich Chinese person immigrating here cause their kid has citizenship is some outrage or danger that needs to be stopped. In the latter case, I'm not really sure whether or not the parents have to return to their home country or not to be sponsored. Regardless, either way it's very different from the common right-wing claim that simply having a baby means you can stay in the country forever and never have to worry about being deported.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Cranky Old Grandpa is on the case:

    "One of the most widely known abuses of the immigration laws is the creation of “anchor babies” to get automatic citizenship when a pregnant woman simply crosses the U.S. border to have her child born on American soil. This is not limited to people who cross the Mexican border. Some are flown in from Asia to waiting posh facilities.

    "Not only do their children get automatic American citizenship without having to meet any requirements, this also increases the opportunities for other family members to gain admission later on, in the name of “family reunification.”"

    http://www.battlecreekenquirer...../32068033/

  • Calidissident||

    First off, Sowell may be brilliant but the guy is hardly an authority on immigration law and isn't unbiased on the subject.

    "Not only do their children get automatic American citizenship without having to meet any requirements"

    This is wrong. They meet the only (not counting kids of citizens born abroad) requirement, which is being born on US soil.

    "this also increases the opportunities for other family members to gain admission later on, in the name of “family reunification"

    "Later on" in this case being 21 years. And who does he mean by "other family members." The parents there illegally? Or other family still in the home country?

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "Not only do their children get automatic American citizenship without having to meet any requirements"

    Ooh, you got him, they have to meet the requirement of being born in the USA. Ooh, Sowell, you just got PWNED! Although I don't think that was the requirement he was thinking of, he was probably thinking more in terms of avoiding crime and staying off welfare.

    "this also increases the opportunities for other family members to gain admission later on, in the name of “family reunification"

    And as you mentioned above, this is true.

  • Calidissident||

    "Ooh, you got him, they have to meet the requirement of being born in the USA. Ooh, Sowell, you just got PWNED! Although I don't think that was the requirement he was thinking of, he was probably thinking more in terms of avoiding crime and staying off welfare."

    Why are we talking about the criminality and welfare usage of a baby? How is that even relevant?

    "And as you mentioned above, this is true."

    And you didn't read my response. "Later on" is a vague and potentially disingenuous term to use. It could mean any length of time. Had Sowell used the real amount of time, 21 years, his point would have been a lot less effective. Also, you could address that part of the immigration system without repealing birthright citizenship.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "Why are we talking about the criminality and welfare usage of a baby?"

    Because Sowell said the individual "didn't have to meet any requirements."

    You said sure he has to meet requirements, he has to be Born in the USA, ooh, burn on Sowell!

    But I don't think you have to be a literary scholar or Talmudist to see what Sowell is getting at - these individuals get to be full American citizens without having to do what immigrants have to do - show themselves to be qualified and suitable.

    The purpose of language is to convey information. This purpose is not served by playing word games when the meaning is fairly clear.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    these individuals get to be full American citizens without having to do what immigrants have to do - show themselves to be qualified and suitable.

    Thanks for the Lol, Eddie.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Now, apparently you grant that the citizen-child can sponsor their illegal-immigrant parent after he (the child) turns 21, with the *possible* exception (you're not sure) of the parents failing to return to the home country (and could they just go back to the home country when the kid is 20?)

    So we have, say, two simililarly-situated Chinese couples. One couple never broke America's immigration laws and is waiting in line for a visa to come to the U.S., and the other couple is getting sponsored by the 21-year anchor baby they had when they illegally came to the US a couple decades ago (though now they're back in China, maybe for a year, maybe longer).

    And it's no problem if the second couple gets to shoulder ahead of the first, getting rewarded for their lawbreaking?

    Or perhaps you're saying that the Chinese anchor-baby thing is the *only* example of such shenanigans, because it's one of the rare instances which gets reported by the media? (though people here on H&R have personal testimony as well)

  • Notorious UGCC||

    And the second couple can tell the first, "we made plans for retiring in the U.S. - all we had to do was break their laws. And you didn't, and look where it left you, suckers! Waiting for someone to get back to about a visa. Good luck with that, you saps!"

  • Calidissident||

    "So we have, say, two simililarly-situated Chinese couples. One couple never broke America's immigration laws and is waiting in line for a visa to come to the U.S., and the other couple is getting sponsored by the 21-year anchor baby they had when they illegally came to the US a couple decades ago (though now they're back in China, maybe for a year, maybe longer).

    And it's no problem if the second couple gets to shoulder ahead of the first, getting rewarded for their lawbreaking?"

    The Chinese women coming here to do this are (overwhelmingly) not breaking any laws. They're entering the country legally on temporary travel visas, having the kids, and going home. I'm not sure why this is hard to grasp.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    OK, but suppose the second couple *does* break the law.

    That wouldn't change the situation, according to your analysis. You specifically argued that if you're Born In The USA (TM), it makes no difference if your parents were illegal immigrants, you still get to be a citizen.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    And in any case a temporary travel visa isn't meant to be a "come back in 21 years as a permanent resident" visa.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    And are you sticking with the argument that this is just an isolated issue with some rich Chinese women?

  • Calidissident||

    The "birth tourism" thing largely is limited to rich Chinese (and other Asian) women. Regarding the whole "anchor baby" thing, it's already been established that the standard conservative narrative of a baby being a talisman against getting deported isn't true. The possibility of getting into the country legally 21 years later isn't exactly quite as dramatic or panic-inducing as that, and I really don't care or see it as some huge issue that needs to be addressed.

    Sorry about the threading btw, it kinda got fucked up by the order of replies.

  • In League with the Dark Ones||

    The "birth tourism" thing largely is limited to rich Chinese (and other Asian) women.

    LA Times says it's popular amongst Taiwanese, Korean, and Turkish (?!) mothers.

    And it looks like less than 8K of these babies are born a year.

  • Calidissident||

    It might not be its purpose, but under current law it can be used as such, with the caveat that getting family members into the country isn't an easy, overnight process. Our immigration system isn't quick, efficient, cheap, or easy to navigate. It doesn't quite get you a "get in free in 21 years card"

  • Calidissident||

    And? I don't care, it's not like the kid chose who his parents were.

  • paranoid android||

    Your statements on this topic are obtuse to the point of mendacity.

    Ooh, you got him, they have to meet the requirement of being born in the USA. Ooh, Sowell, you just got PWNED! Although I don't think that was the requirement he was thinking of, he was probably thinking more in terms of avoiding crime and staying off welfare.

    Hmm. Two things: if "avoiding crime and staying off welfare" should be a requirement for citizenship, there are a whole lot of people in American who can trace their lineage back to the Mayflower who won't qualify. Why do they get to be citizens just for being born here? Second, since it's only the baby's citizenship we're discussing, how can a newborn baby have a criminal record or be on welfare?

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "how can a newborn baby have a criminal record or be on welfare?"

    And you presume to lecture *other* people on mendacity.

  • In League with the Dark Ones||

    One couple never broke America's immigration laws and is waiting in line for a visa to come to the U.S., and the other couple is getting sponsored by the 21-year anchor baby they had when they illegally came to the US a couple decades ago (though now they're back in China, maybe for a year, maybe longer).

    The couple with the "anchor baby" probably spent 20-50K USD to have the baby here (which would be less than the fine for having a second baby in China so birth tourism pays for itself).

    Many of them do it to gain admission to US schools, often private ones, for their children.

    There's a time bomb in doing this, though. By holding a US passport, that child will be subject to both Chinese and American taxes.

    And it's no problem if the second couple gets to shoulder ahead of the first, getting rewarded for their lawbreaking?

    The second couple doesn't get ahead — they have to wait 21 years for the child to be able to sponsor them.

    And if they overstayed their visa or otherwise broke immigration law, add another 10 years to that for illegal immigration penalties.

  • Calidissident||

    "A constitutional amendment can either switch us to a system of the child's citizenship following that of Mom and Dad, or it can just make an exception to jus soli - if Mom and Dad are illegal immigrants you can't get birthright citizenship."

    This isn't gonna happen, and it shouldn't. There is nothing wrong with this policy that has served the country and hemisphere fine for hundreds of years. We are not Europe and we do not need to be more like Europe. One's parents' immigration or citizenship status doesn't make them any less American than anyone else born and raised here. A lot of these kids would be left stateless and in legal limbo. What exactly is the pressing need to overturn this policy, deprive these kids of citizenship, and create further unequal classes of residents in this country?

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "A lot of these kids would be left stateless and in legal limbo."

    Could you clarify that?

  • Calidissident||

    A lot of countries don't necessarily grant automatic citizenship to kids of their citizens born abroad. So if the US doesn't grant them citizenship, they are left stateless. Many countries that do not have jus soli have signed treaties granting citizenship to kids born on their soil who would otherwise be left stateless.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "A lot of countries don't necessarily grant automatic citizenship to kids of their citizens born abroad."

    Nothing about human-rights abuses surprises me anymore, and I imagine that the U.S. could have a law dealing with such cases.

  • Calidissident||

    We could, but it would have to be created and addressed in some way.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Eh, life is complicated.

    But some countries will let their citizens come back from abroad and keep their children. No need to grant automatic citizenship in *those* cases!

  • Calidissident||

    I disagree and thankfully so does our Constitution.

  • FYTW||

    That's definitely a problem.

    But I'm not sure why it's our problem.

  • Calidissident||

    Because we're discussing changing our laws to leave people born and raised in the United States and just as American in any meaningful sense as anyone else stateless and in legal limbo? How would that not be a government-created liberty issue?

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "we're discussing changing our laws to leave people born and raised in the United States and just as American in any meaningful sense as anyone else stateless and in legal limbo?"

    As a matter of fact, as I thought I said above, I'd be open to extending U.S. citizenship to stateless persons who are here *through no choice of their own.*

    But that doesn't address all the cases where you want to extend citizenship.

  • PapayaSF||

    We are not Europe and we do not need to be more like Europe.

    Do we need to be more like Latin America? Because tens of millions of immigrants are doing that.

  • Calidissident||

    We don't "need" anything other than central planners giving up control over people. The US isn't turning into some Latin America dystopia as much as you, Trump, and all the other pantsshitters on the right think it is. Crime rates are well below what they were decades ago. The US didn't turn into Germany, Italy, or Ireland after millions of people came here from those countries, and we're not turning into Mexico either. And if you took your head out of your ass you'd realize that something being Latin American doesn't mean it's bad, dirty, or evil. The region is a lot more than poverty and violence. Someone born and raised here is no less American than anyone else regardless of parentage, there is no reason to change the policy, it simply isn't going to happen, and the only effect would be to add millions more to a legal underclass and inhibit assimilation efforts (which supposedly conservatives want to encourage).

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "The US didn't turn into Germany, Italy, or Ireland after millions of people came here from those countries, and we're not turning into Mexico either."

    When the Germans, etc. came to the U.S., they were under a lot of pressure to assimilate. Not that they assimilated right away - they kept an interest in their home countries and native languages - but those who wanted full integration into American society gradually realized that some assimilation was needed.

    Where will the assimilationist pressures come from in the case of immigrants today?

  • Calidissident||

    Do you guys who make these arguments even know any immigrants or their kids? Even kids from freaking East LA, which is one of the most Latino parts of the country, speak English fluently and are massively affected by American culture. Teenagers who actually grew up in Mexico (or other Latin American countries, or Asian, etc. countries for that matter) would laugh at the notion that Mexican-American kids their own age are just like them and haven't been Americanized at all.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "Teenagers who actually grew up in Mexico (or other Latin American countries, or Asian, etc. countries for that matter) would laugh at the notion that Mexican-American kids their own age are just like them and haven't been Americanized at all."

    Wow, that is a *massive* straw man!

    "massively affected by American culture"

    Oh, that's all right, then.

    Wait, not it's not, I just got through *criticizing* American culture for its cultivation of non-assimilationist attitudes.

    I think I know more immigrants that you do. Some of them chose to assimilate, some chose to keep their original nationality. I know one who got naturalized while retaining a preference for her country of origin. The rest realized they had a choice, and grasped one option or the other.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Now, they had the advantage of (a) getting naturalized at a late age and (b) being fairly intelligent - intelligent enough to know what they were doing, and the implications.

  • Calidissident||

    What is your definition of assimilation then? Is it not enough to speak English, go to American schools, get jobs here, listen to American music, follow American sports, eat American food, etc? Do they also have to give up speaking Spanish, listening to Spanish music, following soccer, eating Mexican food, etc. and give up all sort of identity and attachment to their ancestral country? What exactly do you mean by "non-assimilationist" and in what ways exactly do you feel that current immigrants and their kids/grandkids do not assimilate, particularly in comparison to the past immigrant groups mentioned?

  • Notorious UGCC||

    If you don't know what I mean by assimilation, you can spare me the straw-man crap about soccer and tacos.

    Would that be OK with you?

    Assimilation would include accepting the USA as their homeland, loving their country, accepting ideas like the rule of law, etc.

    "But, but...native-born citizens don't do those things!"

    Assuming that's true, shame on those native-born citizens, but that's no reason for refusing to assimilate immigrants.

  • In League with the Dark Ones||

    When the Germans, etc. came to the U.S., they were under a lot of pressure to assimilate. Not that they assimilated right away - they kept an interest in their home countries and native languages - but those who wanted full integration into American society gradually realized that some assimilation was needed.

    German-Americans rapidly assimilated between about 1916 and 1919.

  • ||

    That's why we need to revive the Know Nothings and the Native Americans, so as to encourage immigrants to greater assimilation so they and their offspring have a better experience of being in the USA. Wagner had it straight.

  • PapayaSF||

    For Jeebus' sake, controlling entry into, and residence in, a country is not "totalitarianism" and it's not "central planning."

  • kbolino||

    For Jeebus' sake, controlling entry into, and residence in, a country is not "totalitarianism" and it's not "central planning."

    Controlling residence is certainly central planning. There's only two people who control residence--the buyer and seller or the landlord and renter. Having to ask the government for permission to buy a house or rent an apartment is pretty much textbook central planning. For that matter, so is having to ask the government for permission to get a job or to hire someone.

    Furthermore, controlling entry for the purpose of effecting an economic outcome is also central planning. That such a thing is broadly acceptable doesn't change the nature of it. Keeping people out because it "hurts the domestic worker" (as in, affects the wages and prices) is a plan executed centrally by the government.

    As far as it goes, I'd grant that the government has the power to control ingress (but not egress, although that doesn't guarantee you entry into another country); but that doesn't extend to within the border. Deportation is the only remedy for immigration violations. You're not supposed to be here, so you have to get out. Everything else is an abuse of power, an abridgment of the liberty of citizens as well as non-citizens, and while not necessarily totalitarian, certainly authoritarian.

  • PapayaSF||

    kbolino, you are getting caught up in abstractions and trying to fit things into ideological boxes. The "central planning" of the sort Hayek and Mises demolished is the "We only need one type of deodorant" sort, government quotas, etc. It's not "central planning" to note that we have lots of unemployment, that low-skilled jobs are increasingly hard to find, that we have a broke welfare state, and that all this means it's really stupid to import tens of millions of low-skilled people who will depress wages and burden welfare rolls (and schools and roads and jails).

  • Calidissident||

    Also, that comment was facetious in that I find it funny how conservatives all of the sudden think we should change our laws to be more like Europe (and make the argument in those explicit terms) while constantly rejecting such rhetoric from the left on gun control, health care, welfare, etc.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    The point of birthright citizenship in the 14th Amendment was to make clear that native-born black people are citizens - and thereby entitled to the protection of the Privileges and Immunities Clause (which you guys may have heard of). I don't think giving a loophole for illegal immigrants was what the framers were thinking of, and in any case a constitutional amendment could clarify things.

    SCOTUS decided in favor of the birthright citizenship interpretation only 30 years after the 14th Amendment was passed in United States v. Wong Kim Ark.

  • Calidissident||

    Everyone knows that was a PC liberal court trying to bring about white genocide so they obviously had an agenda.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    I know what they did in the birthright-citizenship cases, and they could have been right based on the law as it stands now, but I was talking about constitutional amendments.

  • Calidissident||

    He's addressing your argument of "illegal immigrant loophole." It's been standard procedure to give all children of immigrants citizenship for the entirety of this country's history.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    As HM points out, there was no category of "illegal immigrant" until 1875.

    You can say, "well, we should go back to the pre-1875 situation and let anyone in." In fact, that's what a lot of H&R denizens *are* saying.

    But to those who want to preserve the category of "illegal immigrant," what's the point of awarding citizenship to the kids of illegals?

    We can't say "tradition" if the whole jus soli doctrine developed when there was no such thing as an illegal immigrant.

  • Calidissident||

    If they granted citizenship to being visiting the country temporarily, who could hypothetically spend decades abroad before returning to the US, I don't see why kids born and raised here wouldn't logically be covered regardless of their parents status. And US v. Wong Kim Ark took place after 1875, so it was certainly accounted for by the court. I'm not saying anything about tradition in the sense that "tradition makes it right" I'm saying that it is well-established that kids of immigrants are US citizens regardless of their parent's status. If you want to change that, you can argue for it, but it would most definitely require a constitutional amendment, which Trump and many other conservatives don't think is necessary.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    I wasn't speaking for Trump, I was talking about a constitutional amendment.

    Of course, such an amendment would be *so difficult* to ratify!

  • Calidissident||

    I don't know if the asterisks are indicative of sarcasm or not, but yeah, it actually would.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Nothing to worry about, then.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I don't think giving a loophole for illegal immigrants was what the framers were thinking of

    That's because there wasn't such a thing as an illegal immigrant until the Page Act of 1875.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    There was, in fact, some dispute about whether Congress could bar immigrants at all.

  • Jay Dubya||

    LIES!! We all know our British, Dutch and German Founding Fathers hated immigrants.

  • ||

    Well, if your parents are US citizens, then you already do get citizenship if you're born here. I'm pretty sure that even if only one of your parents is a US citizen and the other a legal resident, that would do the same.

  • Jerryskids||

    So here's my proposal: A wide-open border. Really wide open. Immigrants are perfectly free to come across, but the sorts of people who think immigants should be shot are free to shoot 'em and the people who think people who think that immigrants should be shot should be shot are free to shoot those people too.

    Now hear me out: The GOP gets exclusive marketing and merchandising and broadcast rights to the spectacle so they'll be happy making money, the Dems get to impose a high tax on the profits the GOP makes to fund free health care for the wounded so they'll be happy, Donald Trump gets the right to build a yuge garish hotel/casino on the spot so he'll be happy, and Donald Trump will be the first person shot in the free-fire zone so everybody else will be happy.

  • Marty Comanche||

    Sounds like a modest proposal to me.

  • Mr Lizard||

    Good evening mammals. I have been busy chasing underwater Arthropoda with delectable tails. Quite tasty, and quite a lot of work

  • Agammamon||

    A spider.

  • AlmightyJB||

    I like butter too

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    I'm never falling for Trader Joe's "lobster" scam again. Langostino is not lobster.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Red Lobster used to have an awesome Langostinos dish. One of my favs actually.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    It's good, prepared correctly (read: baja style). But it's not lobster.

  • Napoleon Bonaparte||

    Cosmotarian tears are so yummy and sweet!

  • Crusty Juggler||

    This is 'Murca, and in 'Murca you talk 'Murcan and you don't take kindly to no anchor babies ruining this country.

  • ||

    Master Shake: Oh, you never heard of a *check* before? Oh me so sorry. Maybe you're in the wrong business, and maybe immigration would like to know about this.

    Clerk: Good, 'cause you know what? I'm American.

    Master Shake: Well I'm not, but when I become one, maybe then I'll *legally* buy a weapon and we won't have to vote you out of office, will we scumbag?!?

  • Calidissident||

    There was some video taken in LA recently of some crazy old lady telling a table of Latinos to stop speaking Spanish (I think the son recorded it). One of her reasons was that "If you want to speak Spanish go to Spain. That's where Spanish comes from, I know, I've been there!" or something to that effect. Where does she think English comes from?

  • Almanian - Trump's Woodchipper||

    Hitler?

  • Crusty Juggler||

    I spent too much time today listening to right-wing talk radio, and it was all in support of Trump, and it was all about anchor babies, not speaking English, and taking down the D.C. boys.

  • John Titor||

    Of course, Los Angeles has never had any Spanish influence, nor has it even been controlled by Spanish-speaking peoples. And of course, this crazy old lady is speaking the exact English of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, because language is stagnant and never changes.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    A weasel hath not such a deal of spleen as you are toss'd with.

  • Calidissident||

    If it was good enough for Jesus it's good enough for Jesús.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Well except for the occasional fish, bread and wine I don't believe he ever paid the disciples. Just another slave owner like the founding fathers. Guess you can throw the Bible out with the Constitution.

  • TO in TX||

    American English comes from America and British English comes from Britain. You know those Brits talk funny and use too many u's and obnoxiously avoid z's, a perfectly good letter. Wait, what was the question?

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Boehner and McConnell are partially to blame for this by not vociferously standing up to Yomamma.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    This is why I'm voting SILVIA STAGG FOR PRESIDENT!

  • Almanian - Trump's Woodchipper||

    Live Proud! Be Strong!

    /Billy Blanks

  • Pan Zagloba||

    Dammit, HM, I thought we settled on Deez Nuts!

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I only vote for candidates who were given their names by Stan Lee.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    Forgive me for doubting you. You raise an excellent point I haven't considered - time to look at all the candidates in my riding...
    Nope. But there's still time for more candidates to be put on ballot. Hope springs eternal.

    Though I doubt I'll have a chance to vote for half-Slav/half-Latino racist hot crazy chick. Not a lot of Latinos up here...

  • Crusty Juggler||

    I would relish the opportunity to vote for a "good gnome individual."

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • 0x90||

    Another site.

    National Security Case Report!

    The Kennedy Family, Has Announced Its Support for Congresswoman Elizabeth Warren As The Democratic US Presidential Candidate Instead of Hillary Clinton! Finally The Democrats Are Thinking Better, maybe they'll get it right and support Silvia Stagg For President-Vice President! Congresswoman Warren Assured Me She Would Not Hunt Myself Nor Members of My Family or Supporters as Obama-Bush-Clinton.

    Congresswoman Elizabeth Warren Assured Me She Would Allow Me To Rise As President-Vice President after herself. And Congresswoman Warren Hopes She Will Be Allowed To Disseminate Life Extension Healings To The White Christian European Descent Race Worldwide Providing She Is Not Body/Mind Altered Nor Threatened So Via The Microwave Brainwave Alteration Device by Barack Obama Ensuring More Mass Tortured Murder of the White Christian European Descent Race! - With Kind Regards To America And The World, Silvia Stagg

    ...and much, much more (the page goes on nearly forever).

  • Not a Libertarian||

    Which group is the _most_ unlikely to ever vote GOP

    (and of course immigrants overwhelmingly and will ever more overwhelmingly vote for Democrats. Not to say that at some point, this might be the relatively conservative choice with a growing socialist or green native vote)

    A European immigrant?
    An African Immigrant?
    A Latin American Immigrant?

    I'd say that it could possibly be the African immigrant. They might possibly vote 25% GOP, maybe

    The European immigrant surely is at most a 15% GOP voter, no?

  • Pan Zagloba||

    Right now, no. Europeans who move to US and ask for citizenship don't want US to be more like Europe, by and large. Either they won't vote, or they'll vote Blue Democrat at most left-wise, and god knows those got decimated.
    Now, if hordes of French and Italian citizens who want more socialism start showing up in US because some Thatcher equivalent swept the election and totally turned the country's mindset around, that might be different.

  • Not a Libertarian||

    the default European view of Republicans is that they are at best crazy and at worst that they are Nazis reincarnated.

    perhaps a view not unlike Libertarians

    Even Tories default to the Clintonian Democrats

  • ||

    They say that Europe is swinging right, hard and fast. I just totally have no idea what that means.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    When Europe is moving "right" that means they are blending nationalism into their socialism.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    All the hysterical screaming about what will happen to immigrants in us if republican is elected president? That is coming over there.
    The migrants coming in are becoming unmanageable, and their politicians have no idea what to do. I expect some old fashioned racist euro violence.

  • ||

    It's already happening in Berlin from what I've heard, isolated incidents.

    And the immigration over there is totally fucking out of control, especially in Britain, Sweden, and France.

    Then look at what's happening in Italy and Greece. Thanks, Hillary.

  • Irish ♥s ESB||

    "The migrants coming in are becoming unmanageable, and their politicians have no idea what to do. I expect some old fashioned racist euro violence."

    Given the existence of Golden Dawn I think you've already had some old fashioned racist euro violence.

    The basic rule of Europe is that they're less violent during peacetime than America is, but they make up for it with tens of millions of corpses when things go south. It's been that way going back to the early 1800s - they've always had lower murder rates, but then they'll just butcher a couple million here and there to work off steam.

    I don't know if Europeans still have the old Mass Murder impulse in them or if it's been bred out, but increasingly nationalistic Europeans + a large and growing Muslim minority could be an incredibly dangerous mix.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    I have every faith that mass murder impulse is there. And it's running straight into superiority complex of shitheads whose lives suck and who know it's the kaffir's fault. The only response that any government can think of is "horrible backlash of anti-Muslim violence" and eventually populace will take their government at their word.

  • Irish ♥s ESB||

    "They say that Europe is swinging right, hard and fast. I just totally have no idea what that means."

    It means good old Euro-statism is now being blended with a bizarre xenophobic streak and a growing sense of nationalism.

    The worst country in that regard so far is probably Hungary where fucking Jobbik (outright, anti-Jew neo-Nazis who actually like the Muslims because they see them as Jew-killing allies) are the third largest party and actually won the last by-election.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    And speaking of Hungary, their govt plans to build a wall on the border with Serbia, which is now a major transit route. Serbs are pissed off because they don't want these people to stay!

  • Sanjuro Tsubaki||

    Uh oh. GOP leadership is flagging in its enthusiasm to walk over razor blades and codify amnesty. Time for Reasonoids to start throwing a hissy.

  • Not a Libertarian||

    Setting aide what might be the Moral issue with Amnesty

    Why would Republican politicians vote for it?

    A politician at the end of his or her career sure, but a younger GOP politician is either voting for their electoral loss or a permanent (for the purposes of their career at least) minority in the House and Senate.

    What solace can a GOP politician take that in 30/40 years a non-Democratic majority might be assembled in Congress?

  • AlmightyJB||

    An immigration thread for two and half hours? Where in the hell is Robby at?

  • Pan Zagloba||

    Two and a half hours is just a beginning of the proper hair treatment. Yes, it takes a while, but the results....oh lah lah!

  • AlmightyJB||

  • ||

    What the hell is this? A late night thread totally on topic?

    What is wrong with you people?

  • Eric||

    Raise your hand if you could give a shit less about immigration, legal or otherwise.

    Actually, I could give a shit less, because personally I'm all for it, legal and otherwise.

  • Paul.||

    I still don't understand why Mexicans get all the bad rap. Will no one protect us from the hoards of dodgy immigrants coming through our northern border?

  • lap83||

    Cytotoxic would come down but he's too smart or something. He doesn't want to make us feel bad

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    The modern GOP has become a beautiful fusion of nativism, fundamentalism, and cronyism. It's almost breathtaking to contemplate the sheer majesty of their self-destructiveness.

  • straffinrun||

    Ying and Yang. The derp must balance out in a two party system.

  • ||

    I'm somewhere in the middle on this issue. Somewhere between Dalmia (Open the borders wide!) and Trump (Deport all these rapists and murderers!).

    We need a non crazy view on this. And I think that it's this. As bad as the immigration process is now, and it's fucking bad, it's totally fucked, I don't want any comprehensive immigration reform. Why? Because I don't want Congress touching something is that is already really fucked up.

    So I think we leave the immigration process alone. We add a completely separate bill that allows guest workers. It would work sort of like a tourist visa. You come and stay 6 months and you can legally work, but for 6 months of the year, you have to go back to your country. But all the rules that apply to tourist visas apply here. You overstay, you loose your card.

    So anyone can come and work, part of the year. If you want to stay permanently, you apply for a permanent visa and get in line with everyone else. The time you spent here working and complying with the rules, gains you points towards getting a permanent visa.

    And no tax payer benefits for guest workers, or anyone here illegally.

    All of that either gets me labeled as an extremists xenophobe or an open borders psychopath depending on where someone stands on the issue. Because we can't just talk about this and come up with something that makes sense, we either have to be in the Dalmia camp or the Trump camp.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    Why only part of the year? If they are working they are creating wealth. Why put a limit on that? Just issue people work visas, let them pay taxes, and work towards citizenship if that is their thing. .

  • ||

    That would in effect make them a permanent resident. Would you implement that with no quotas? Just asking.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    None. It wouldn't grant them citizenship, specifically franchise, just the ability to work and live a normal life (like being able to call the police if you need them) without the Sword of Damocles hanging over their heads.

  • ||

    No, it wouldn't make them a citizen, it would make them a permanent resident.

    How does one qualify for this?

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    Show up.
    Don't have a felonious record.
    Get a job.

  • ||

    Ok, well we just eliminated the permanent resident program, the H1B program. Is this like the Flat Tax, only for immigration?

    Ok, let's do it. When a half billion people from all over the world show up on the same day, don't say I didn't tell you so.

    This isn't the 18th century. What your suggesting is quite insane. But fuck it, let's do it!

  • ||

    Then I can finally realize my plan to found libertopia. Since several countries around the world will be completely empty, I can just walk in and plant the flag.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    Good grief, dude, supply and demand work for labor, too.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Not to mention people can't just teleport to places. What's the airfare from, say, Delhi to NYC? And what's the chance that your average Indian mud farmer could afford it?

  • Sevo||

    "...We add a completely separate bill that allows guest workers...."

    Been tried:
    "The Bracero Program"
    [...]
    "The number of illegal's who entered the
    U.S. during the tenure of the Bracero
    program was equal to or surpassed the
    number of braceros."

  • Sevo||

  • DK||

    Interesting. It sounds like government wage controls caused the illegal influx. From Wikipedia:

    U.S. businesses increasingly realized that provisions within the program ensured an increase of costs for the imported labor. The program mandated a certain level of wages, housing, food and medical care for the workers (all payable by the employers) that kept the standard of living above what many had in Mexico. This not only enabled many to send funds home to their families but also had the unintended effect of encouraging illegal immigration after the filling of quotas for official workers in the U.S.

    These new illegal workers could not be employed as part of the program, leaving them vulnerable to working for lower wages and without the benefits received by workers under the bracero program. This, in turn, had the effect of eroding the U.S. agricultural sector's support for the program in favor of hiring illegal immigrants to reduce costs. The advantages of hiring illegal workers included such workers' willingness to work for lower wages, without support, health coverage or in many cases legal means to address abuses by the employers for fear of deportation. Nevertheless, conditions for the poor and unemployed in Mexico were such that illegal employment motivated many to work in the United States illegally.
  • straffinrun||

    S&P yearly gains wiped out. Gold up 25$. Rate hike coming in March, um no, June, er, make that September. Would you believe December?
    http://www.cnbc.com/2015/08/20.....weigh.html

  • straffinrun||

    RegisteredDemocrat • 2 hours ago

    The government MUST take complete control of industry and financial institutions in this country RIGHT NOW before it's too late! They also need to ban cash and track every single transaction to keep us from another collapse.

    Bush caused all of this.

    Now that is some quality trolling.

  • ||

    That's not what socialism means! Did you hear Bernie talking about taking over industry! You extemist baggers don't know what socialism is!

  • AlmightyJB||

    You couldn't stop assimilation even if your wanted to. First generation sure, many of them will never assimilate just like immigrants before them from across the Atlantic, but the next generation. They want nothing more than to "fit in".

  • AlmightyJB||

    this doesnt go here. moved below

  • AlmightyJB||

    Good timing for me. My wife had rolled over into an IRA a few years back into freakin Bond funds. Have meeting planned with broker tomorrow to diversify. I can only hope it drops more tomorrow.

  • ||

    The other thing is, and I think it's been mentioned here before, even in this thread, if you just get a very fast massive influx of foreign nationals, it's not going to be like these people came in slowly, like always before, and they have generations to integrate into the culture. What we're going to do is effect an immense change in culture. I'm not talking about multiculturalism and making a case for or against it. I'm talking about the political culture. Where most of these folks are coming from, our type of constitutional republic is a very foreign and unknown thing. These people are going to get to vote, and I don't think a vast majority of them are going to vote in a way that libertarians would really like.

    Consider that, before you go wishing for totally open borders with no rules.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    like these people came in slowly, like always before,

    Lol wut, Hyp?

    America has had wave immigration in the past and the same nativist knee-jerk about the dirty Messicans was in evidence towards the Irish, Italians, and Chinese.

  • ||

    Not by the millions from all over the world. If you completely open the borders, it would be a full scale mass invasion from all over the planet. It's pure insanity.

  • AlmightyJB||

    You couldn't stop assimilation even if your wanted to. First generation sure, many of them will never assimilate just like immigrants before them from across the Atlantic, but the next generation. They want nothing more than to "fit in".

  • ||

    Alright, I give up. Just open the borders wide. Nothing could possibly go wrong.

  • AlmightyJB||

    That's what I told her

  • ||

    And now you see, there's hordes of little JBs running all around all over the place, and this is part of the problem.

  • AlmightyJB||

    If my limited offspring were anything like me they never have survives their teens.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Might help open ;things up a bit if the feds would give up some or all of that land out west they've been hoarding.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    Now you're just being crazy.

  • AlmightyJB||

    So I've been told.

  • *GILMORE*||

    ""Just open the borders wide. Nothing could possibly go wrong.""

    If you consider "open borders" has effectively been the status quo for at least our lifetimes....

    (i.e. we already currently have an "open borders" policy by default - , though one not intended to be so, because it has a huge immigration enforcement arm that does nothing but suck up lots of money and make everyones lives miserable....immigrants, employers, and regular citizens. You can try and dispute this... but i'd ask= how exactly did we end up with ~12 million "illegals" if we were currently being so scrupulous?)

    ... and you look around, you'd be hard-pressed to argue that any major social disaster has occurred.

    Yes, there are problems. most of them due to the 'lets-pretend we can keep them out'- enforcement system keeping 'illegals' in a shadow-economy and cloistered in non-assimilating communities.

    The solution is not to "open the borders *more*" ...

    (i don't think either extreme - either 'sealing' the border, or 'zero-identity-checking of immigrants' - is possible)

    ...but to simply *acknowledge* the status quo, and reform our system to deal with the reality as it exists, and not how we'd magically prefer it would be.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    Ok, let's talk about some of the elehants in the room. There's quite a herd.

    First off, we aren't talking about illegal immigration in general. The asians aren't much of a problem. The last time the border with Canada was a real issue was 1812, and we started that part of it. We're talkng about undocumented hispanic border jumpers coming in from Mexico. Mexico has no reason, that I know of, to stop them. Last I heard money sent home from The United States was the second or third biggest source of wealth in Mexico, depending on how you counted the drugs.

    If we cut off the illegals AND killed the War On Drugs at the same time, Mexico's economy - such as it is - might well collapse. Or collapse further.

    Second, Mexico is better governed that it has been in some time, at least from what I read. Which, frankly, puts it on a par with, say, Newark. Giving them money has never seemed to help much. LOANING them money is, if anything, worse. A lot of Mexico's problems seem to be endemic to that part of the world that was colonised by Spain, with a few exceptions that don't seem to be spreading.

    Nobody (except Ron White, and I think he'd be quite startled if anyone took him seriously) has suggested a flat out cnquest of Mexico. But it might be the best solution.

  • Sevo||

    "Nobody (except Ron White, and I think he'd be quite startled if anyone took him seriously) has suggested a flat out cnquest of Mexico. But it might be the best solution."

    Sarc, I hope.
    I can't imagine you're suggesting that the US military/gov't is capable of installing a superior form of government by conquest.
    That has happened exactly once AFIK, and why it worked in Japan probably has to do with keeping Hirohito as a puppet rather than any real skills on the part of MacArthur.

  • ||

    Oh c'mon Sevo. Ron White is a comedian.

    It's a joke.

  • ||

    Well, if he was serious, he'd be talking about the only real thing we need to do. Invade Canada.

  • AlmightyJB||

    There's nothing there.

  • *GILMORE*||

    Oh, that's what you think NOW.

    When global warming kicks in, Canada is going to have the most pleasant seasonal weather (and great arctic beachfront) in the world.

    Also, maple syrup will soon be discovered to cure cancer, baldness, and fuel space travel.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    The problem with invading Canada is that then we'd have Canada.

  • Sevo||

    Suthenboy|8.20.15 @ 10:34PM|#
    "Oh c'mon Sevo. Ron White is a comedian."
    I got that; I was concerned that CSPS was taking it seriously.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    I think that the theory that the Japanese accepted MacArthur so redly because they had a space in their heads for "General who is theoretically one step below the Emperor, and Practically has more authority" has something to it. If so, MacArthur's monumental ego probably saved us a great deal of trouble.

    I would be serious IF we had the temperament of the Victorian British. We don't. We'd try "Nation Building" instead of flat-out governing the place for a couple of hundred years, until they grew strong enough to throw us out.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Kill the War on Drugs and perhaps lees people might want to leave Mexico. The violence is no doubt a big part of why people want to gtfo of there.

    Then ask Mexico if they want to be annexed. Cheap beachfront property and your new southern border is 10% the length of your old one.

  • Sevo||

    "...Then ask Mexico if they want to be annexed..."
    When I want to speak with "Mexico", what phone number do I call?

  • AlmightyJB||

    867-5309

  • Pompey||

    +52 8675 309

  • ||

    Can we trade them California for Mexico? All the Commiefornians are now in Mexico and can't send any congress critters to DC or vote. Sounds like a WIN to me.

  • Sevo||

    Hyperion|8.20.15 @ 10:26PM|#
    "Can we trade them California for Mexico?"
    As bad as CA is, it still seems preferable to Mexico.

  • Irish ♥s ESB||

    So the Thai police are now saying the suspect in the shrine bombing 'spoke an unfamiliar language' to the cabbie and that the attack likely involved a large plot by many different conspirators.

    Given that it's Thailand there are multiple choices, but I'm guessing it's somehow related to Islam, given that it involved a non-Thai speaker and a large amount of preparation. Those are both big Jihad red flags, especially in a country with longstanding problems with a Muslim insurgency.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    There are whispers from certain sectors that the primary suspect is a Uighur.

  • Irish ♥s ESB||

    Well, they are a Muslim minority and Thailand recently repatriated a bunch of Uighurs to China, so there would be a reason for a Uighur to be involved.

    It also seems unlikely it's related to the South Thailand insurgency because that's never extended into Bangkok before, whereas other Islamists (such as Iranian political assassins who were there to kill Israelis) have attacked that city before.

    All speculation obviously, but I don't know what it could be other than some kind of Islamist attack, especially given that it was a popular religious shrine for both Buddhists and Hindus.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    especially given that it was a popular religious shrine for both Buddhists and Hindus.

    Yeah, kinda. I mean it is popular, but it's not as if it dates from time primeval. It was built by a hotel and in some ways is more like a roadside attraction than, say, Wat Phra Kaew, the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, which is the most sacred Buddhist site in the whole country.

    but I don't know what it could be other than some kind of Islamist attack

    Lone wolf attack by a Red Shirt supporter? False flag by Chan-Ocha to justify a scorched earth campaign against the Muslim south? Who knows? That's the fun of living in the Land of Smiles.

    As an aside, my wife and I keep seeing commercials for that upcoming No Escape movie and we're laughing our asses off.

  • AlmightyJB||

    First I've heard of No Escape. May have to go check out the new Mission Impossible at some point.

  • Irish ♥s ESB||

    Holy God that looks terrible. I love the vague, Hollywood racism of all the foreigners getting killed while of course the movie focuses on the white Americans.

    I also love that to Hollywood all foreign lands are immensely dangerous. Southeast Asia is one of the safest places on Earth (at least from the perspective of murders, etc.), but according to American filmmakers it's a constant killing field.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Would have been more realistic in Detroit? Or Hollywood for that matter

  • Calidissident||

    That's why I loved Taken. France as a third world hellhole where your daughter will get kidnapped and sold into slavery if she's go there for a U2 concert. Regarding Southeast Asia, there are some dangerous areas. From a glance at the Wiki stats, a few countries have homicide rates higher than the US. But I do agree with the overall point.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Whiners are no laughing matter.

  • Sevo||

    WIH would a Uighur have a gripe with the Thais?

  • Sevo||

    Ooops, missed this:
    "Well, they are a Muslim minority and Thailand recently repatriated a bunch of Uighurs to China, so there would be a reason for a Uighur to be involved."
    Still not persuaded.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    So the Thai police are now saying the suspect in the shrine bombing 'spoke an unfamiliar language'

    "No doubt Yiddish!"
    /Sheldon Richman

  • Sevo||

    And the photo showed curly hair!

  • Pan Zagloba||

    Inspector Sevo, I believe you have cracked the case!

  • straffinrun||

  • AlmightyJB||

    not enough eye rolling

  • straffinrun||

    Ever listen to the Mises guys go on about Ron Paul? Creeeeepy.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Not sure. Occasionally see one pop in here. Usually talking about fiat money.

  • straffinrun||

    I agree with them on a lot of that. It's just Austrian economics and business cycle theory. But, they go full cult when it comes to Ron.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Gov’t to creamery: Your milk is entirely too natural to not be labeled “imitation”

    http://hotair.com/archives/201.....imitation/

  • straffinrun||

    Get thee to a creamery.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    And speaking of immigrants.. Meanwhile, in Germany.

    At least 17 people were injured at an overcrowded German refugee shelter after one resident tore pages out of a Koran.
    Around 20 refugees chased the Afghan man who damaged the Muslim Holy Book and threw the discarded pages into the toilet.
    He was eventually saved by the shelter's guards which prompted the mob - according to local media mainly Syrian men - to turn their anger on the camp's security team.
    More than 50 men armed themselves with steel rods and began throwing rocks at guards and policemen.k

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Strangely, the US doesn't seem to have this problem with its Muslim communities.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    I'd like to check the sanity or testicle size of a man that would destroy a Koran in the middle of a Syrian refugee camp.

  • Sevo||

    There are the individuals who re-repatriate and join the whackos, but when they do, they are few enough that they are identifiable by name.
    I have to admit to being more concerned by the extremely rare condemnation of un-provoked Muslim violence by those who are presumed to be non-extremists.
    And by "un-provoked", I certainly include drawing funny pictures of your supposed holy-guy. If you find that provocative, you do not qualify for 'non-extremist'.
    You are welcome to laugh at my presumption that you're an ignoramus for being a bleever; I get the same tolerance.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    Nothing strange about it. Your Muslims have to get a visa and pay for the flight. It automatically eliminates the worst kind of short-sighted idiot.
    These guys paid some smuggler to take them through Turkey or across the Med (most likely Turkey if they are in Germany) so they could apply for asylum. Completely different demographic. Much like there are few Guatemalan gangbangers in Hamburg.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    However, our Muslims up here are now feeling bold enough to get some Jew-stomping on:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a8HSN53vYC0

  • Calidissident||

    OT: Reddit's response to the China explosion? Clearly the authoritarian Chinese government doesn't have enough power over the KKKorporations?

    "Whenever people ask me how I can be for regulation, my go-to example has been that Texas fertilizer plant explosion.
    Tianjin is the uppercut to Texas's right cross."

    "But.... the whole Texas thing hapend DESPITE regulations, IIRC. Did I miss something"

    "Horribly underfunded and understaffed regulatory agencies that couldn't effectively do their job because of anti-reg people doing their best to hamstring them.
    Classic republican strategy: Government is broken. Elect me and I'll prove it!
    Regulation didn't work in Texas because they have enough inspectors to inspect every facility in the state once every 25 years or something."

    http://tinyurl.com/qysec4s

  • Irish ♥s ESB||

    They're unteachable.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    Since it's about time for HnR to roll up the sidewalks, a question for the gamers. Homeworld Remastered worth buying? Never played the originals.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    Neither have I. But I trust TotalBiscuit, who is a huge Homeworld fan and who gave it a huge thumbs up. He called it the best remastered game so far.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lqDz4CmiKwo

    RTS is not my bag though. It looked like a lot of micromanagement, so I am looking to get it when it's on sale and when my backlog clears a bit.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    I'm ok with RTS (rekindled my love affair w/ Medieval Total War 2 recently :) but there definitely is a point at which having to micro manage kills the flow of the game. I'll probably do like you and wait til it's on sale. Thanks.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    Don't get discouraged - I have problems with anything more involved than Warcraft 3. But yes, Steam has taught me that paying full price for games is only done for very special occasions - like Witcher 3.

  • JeremyR||

    Why, it's almost as if the country is now full of Mexicans or something.

    I think people have seen the effects. And see what the future will be like.

    Do you want the US to become Mexico? Well, it's probably going to happen, period. But it's a matter of it being sooner or later...

  • Calidissident||

    7/10

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    America's Finest, from my hometown.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Why on earth did I click that?

    I would call the cop a baboon, but the baboon doesn't have to compensate for having tiny genitals.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Oh, and I just noticed your immigrant comment from above, so fuck you. Up ass. With a sharp stick. Sideways.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    :(

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Well, sometimes I get a bit overwrought, but some of it is because I *know* that very soon, I'm going to see a summary of my immigration views as "OMG eddie wants to throw immigrants into live volcanoes after harvesting their organs!"

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    I understand and for what it's worth I wasn't laughing at you or even being snide, just more laughing because it made me think of how many worthless shitbag Americans I have interacted with that would never measure up to the standards of your average migrant Mexican worker.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    I grant that, and I admitted it above.

    I have a bit of familiarity with immigration history in this country, and it's not just one big After School Special with Hans and Patrick teaching everyone a Lesson in Tolerance.

    There was lots of anti-immigrant nastiness, but on the part of the immigrants there was, shall we say, a period of transition between their first arrival and full assimilation. We had Irish immigrants rioting (versus rioters from the WASP community, of course). We had German immigrants hanging around in saloons being all socialistic and anarchistic, and sometimes setting bombs. These things weren't the inventions of paranoid xenophobes.

    Of course, there's another, more inspiring side of the story - immigrants coming here to get better lives and becoming 100% Americans, and beating up flag-burning WASP hippies.

    But it wasn't an automatic progression, it took dedicated members of the respectable classes in the various immigrant communities, encouraging their countrymen to shape up and sing Yankee Doodle.

    Now we have multiculturalists saying that there's no point assimilating to such a racist society, etc., etc. We'll have to see how that plays out.

  • Pan Zagloba||

    Good god.
    But you know, I prefer the "I'm the LAW and I'll beat your ass" attitude, which cops of shitholes world over have over the special American "I'm the LAW and OMG HE'S COMING FOR ME BLAMBLAMBLAM" mix of cowardice and bullying.

  • Paul.||

    One of these days the cops are going to give the guy still making vertical video a beatdown like that, and he'll deserve it.

  • Irish ♥s ESB||

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    You can't make that determination without seeing the caboose.

  • Quincy.||

    LIMBERBUTT MCCUBBINS 2016!

    Meow is the time to increase the number of H-1B visas in this country. There are hundreds of qualified foreign cats that are ready to immigrate to the United States of America.

    For generation upon generation, these cats, both large and small, have created a better America for us all. The lions are a well respected cat from the african continent. The siamese cats are well respected for their glamor.

    The list goes on and on. However, as president, I will not rest until the number of H-1B visas allowed per year is increased in order to allow more foreign cats to work here in the United States.
  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    Wasn't somebody complimenting the late night posts just this week?

  • PapayaSF||

  • Cyto||

    You don't have to go all the way back to Reagan to find a GOP president who championed expansion of legal immigration and work permits. The last Republican president to hold office, Bush II, put forth an immigration plan that tackled all these issues. He was met with solid opposition from the other side of the aisle. With isolationists in his own party, the plan went nowhere.

    So it is pretty unfair to blame the immigration mess solely on the Republicans. It is pretty clear that the Democrats would prefer to have the issue for election time rather than good governance as well. Plus, Republicans have signed off on "The Last Amnesty Ever, Ever.... We Promise!" twice now. There's a reason the anti-immigration rabble is not open to hearing any discussion of another amnesty.

    The last amnesty was supposed to end illegal immigration by enforcing laws preventing illegals from working. Except we don't. Not in industries that depend on illegals, like agriculture, construction, food service, custodial services, lawn service... All problems that would be easily solved with a viable work visa program. You know. Like the one Reagan proposed. Or Bush II.

    Instead we have the current administration's proposal of enhanced illegal immigration with bonus extra deportations plus extra-legal amnesties. Yeah, that's sound policy! In fact, it sounds exactly like what you'd do if you wanted to increase illegal immigration while increasing the criminal element and racial anger.

  • ||

    Why, it's almost as if the R's actually tried to fix the immigration system but the D's have an ulterior motive.

  • Acosmist||

    Reagan's blunder was infamously bad. You seriously are using this awful thing Reagan did to argue FOR him?

    Holy shit Reason, we get it. No one is going to call you a Yokeltarian. You don't need to signal anymore. You're safe! Now stop being objectively insane about this open borders horseshit.

  • kbolino||

    Holy shit Reason, we get it. No one is going to call you a Yokeltarian. You don't need to signal anymore. You're safe! Now stop being objectively insane about this open borders horseshit.

    You do realize that sometimes people disagree with you for reasons entirely unrelated to their social groups, right?

  • kbolino||

    I suppose from your perspective, you're giving them the benefit of the doubt. "You can't possibly be this stupid, so you must be lying!"

    I would like to see some discussion and debate by intelligent people among the Reason writers and editors, which requires a difference of opinion that is presently lacking among them, but I'm not sure accusing them all of being mendacious is going to get us there.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Editors? All they did was report how God's Own Prohibitionists have made the descent down the Road to National Socialism, using the exact words of the party's platforms. Here's another National Socialist immigration plank, from 1920:
    7. We demand that the State shall make it its primary duty to provide a livelihood for its citizens. If it should prove impossible to feed the entire population, foreign nationals (non-citizens) must be deported from the Reich.

    8. All non-German immigration must be prevented. We demand that all non-Germans who entered Germany after 2 August 1914 shall be required to leave the Reich forthwith.

    Heck, y'all Re-publicans can just copy that and print it, no charge. The Dems will find their plank on the CPUSA website.

  • BrookeLoomeslfu||

    Start working at home with Google! It’s by-far the best job I’ve had. Last Wednesday I got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this - 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $77 per hour. I work through this link, go to tech tab for work detail,,,,,,,

    http://www.homejobs90.com

  • New Balance 996||

    If winter comes , can spring be far behind ?

  • Hank Phillips||

    That about sums it up. However it ignores the background. Anyone can download the "US Department of State Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs International Narcotics Control Strategy Report Volume II, Money Laundering and Financial Crimes." There is the strategy Herbert Hoover applied, using the Income Tax fresh out of the Communist Manifesto to enforce 18th Amendment alcohol prohibition. And the results are the same, except that by exporting the damage internationally, knowing in advance how it would wreck securities markets overseas, Geithner's Treasury was able to recoup through the losses suffered by the countries that imported US tax-based prohibitionism through the UN. True, this is trading on inside information, but when Treasury is behind it, good luck getting an indictment. The document is a record of US infiltration and destabilization of sovereign states, complete with wiretaps, and gutting their economies.

  • Episteme||

    An interesting data point dug by generally-pro-open border (and himself an immigrant) law professor Eugene Volokh, in trying to determine "...how many people are likely to want to come to the U.S., and stay for the indefinite future, under this model?":

    Here’s one data point I saw on this, back in 2008. The Reader’s Digest reported the results of a poll that asked people in other countries, among other things, whether they “would be interested in moving to America if economic and political barriers were non-existent.” (That’s just the Digest’s paraphrase, I should stress; please let me know if you know the exact text of the question, and more broadly whatever else you may know about the survey, since I recognize it might well be flawed.) The Digest gave answers for 17 countries, but let me just give the biggest one, India: 73%.

    Now I strongly suspect that Indian immigrants to the U.S. have given the country a great deal, and that the country is on balance better for letting them in (as I hope is the case about Russian Empire immigrants like me). But, let me say again: 73%. Of over a billion people.
  • Arthur45||

    The extraordinary stupidity of libertarians on immigration is that they fantasize about"two way traffic" etc. Of course, the two way traffic or open border is actually one way and not really open to anyone except low life Mexicans who have been a failure in their own country. Libertarians rarely are in touch with the real world.

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