January 26, 2013

"A working group of senators from both parties is nearing agreement on broad principles for overhauling the nation’s immigration laws..."

3 Democrats and 3 Republicans — Durbin, Schumer, Menendez, Graham, McCain, and Rubio — "have been meeting quietly" and are about to announce their proposal, the WaPo frontpages:
The new effort was spurred in large part by the growing influence of Latino voters who strongly backed President Obama and other Democrats in November.
Interesting how that energizes both parties to act. A fascinating political game, which includes not only the reform itself but also — whether the reform occurs or not — the way various political actors look as they relate to the proposal for reform. It's sure to be a garish spectacle. In this political theater, who's most likely to take pratfalls on the public stage?
The senators are expected to call for normalizing the status of the nation’s 11 million undocumented immigrants, including allowing those with otherwise clean criminal records to obtain legal work permits, officials said. The group is also likely to endorse stricter border controls and a better system for employers to verify the immigration status of workers.

It was not clear, however, whether the final agreement will offer guidance on perhaps the thorniest issue in the immigration debate: what mechanism illegal immigrants could use to pursue full citizenship.
Here's a chance for Republicans to stop being "the stupid party" — as Bobby Jindal advised recently — and to become the truly smart party. Don't appeal to fears. Don't resort to ideology. Actually figure out the right answer on the basis of sharp economic thinking, and be prepared to explain it clearly. It seems to me, we have 11 million undocumented immigrants working in this country because they are serving our needs. My hypothesis is: We don't kick them out because we want them here, whether we admit it to ourselves or not. That's why we don't get tough. We still talk about getting tough and kicking them out — and walling out additional migration — because that appeals to emotion and tracks habitual thinking. But what's really happening? What have we really been doing all these years? How can we align the official policy with reality? That's how I'd like to see Republican politicians sharpen up, become the smart party, and show leadership.

296 comments:

«Oldest   ‹Older   201 – 296 of 296
Shana said...

"Ann suggests that an economic analysis, focused on what generates the greatest benefit for the US, is the way to answer that question."

Yes, Ann. Greatest benefit for which part of the US? When gas prices crashed in the eighties, and the economy roared under Reagan, Houston and Dallas were devastated because they were heavily economically dependent on oil. Those cities are now balanced among different economic sectors, thus less vulnerable. You can't have a Grand Five Year Economic Plan without creating winners and losers. You have chosen the highly skilled over the less skilled. Fine. Own it.
I know too many guys thrown out of construction work, etc. Who aren't going to become accountants as a career restart. And, not living in Madison, WI, I know that blacks and lower skilled whites suffer the most from these policies. I don't know what the answer is, but Iam not sanguine about the future of our country as currently constitued.

Hagar said...

Durbin, Schumer, Menendez, Graham, McCain, and Rubio —

So simmer down people; this bunch of clowns can't possibly come up with anything but an over-complicated mess that won't work even if by some miracle they get it passed through Congress.

jr565 said...

So are dems on board with this? What about all the talk about people earning a living wage? What about the minimum wage?
Are you going to accept that these people, while able to work here, will not be paid a minimum wage and are you ok with that?
Or, are we now going to make unskilled farm work a minimum wage job?
If so, what do you think will happen to all the job opportunities? If not, then do you not think that companies, recognizing that they are paying minimum wage salaries to unskilled Americans can probably pay less than minimum wage to unskilled workers from other countries and thus make more of those low level jobs the ones that immmigrants will take and not Americans?
If you are a poor and unskilled citizen in this country you better worry about your job security. Not that there is much opportunity, but you're about to compete with people who will do it for far less and companies will cater to that.

NotquiteunBuckley said...

Thousands of billboards across the country:

Democrats have been caught abusing Latinos, please call your local congressman to help end this bigotry from Democrats toward Latinos.

Black Democrats hurting their Latino neighbors should be on billboards throughout all blue states. We need Black on Brown political fireworks, and we need them now.

Anglelyne said...

Aridog: We are a nation of immigrants, unquestionably.

All nations are "nations of immigrants", when you get down to it. So what? That tells you nothing about whether any given immigration policy is wise or unwise, at any given time. (Contrary to nostalgists' belief, Emma Lazarus was not the founder of the nation nor is her poem in the Constitution.)

In our first century no immigrants were documented in the fashion of today.

No, not really. There were restrictions on immigration, even during the Great Waves.

It is humorous that the descendent's of those undocumented folks now seek to just pull the door shut.

Why is that "humorous"? This is one of those meaningless comments that is perennially trotted out as if it's some big "Ooooh, burn", argument-ending killer comeback, when it addresses nothing. If somebody immigrates sometime, that proves that it's a good idea to let anybody immigrate, anytime? (But that's the sort of deep thinking one gets from people who are sure they don't see any anglophone roofers in their neighborhood because "it's a job Americans just won't do".)

Immigrants are going to keep coming, how we receive them or not doesn't matter...they WILL come.

Bullshit. Countries who want to control migration to their country are perfectly capable of doing so. Or rather, countries where the "people who matter" want immigration controlled, control it.

jr565 said...

and of course the libs will say it's companies greed that did this. But as we see, its goverment action.
Companies will always look to the botttom line. Govt though is the one, out of "fairness" that will actually be doing the shafting.

bagoh20 said...

The Right's electoral problems with immigrants won't be fixed by policy. They are like too many of our people, in that they live their lives as conservatives, but have a complete disconnect politically, and will vote mostly Liberal.

Again, Althouse is right that people need to be smarter, she's just wrong about who that is.

traditionalguy said...
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traditionalguy said...

Interestingly many Hispanic families from Puerto Rico, Cuba and Mexico have saved up cash from their wiles learned in dealing with corrupt banks and Governments in their old country. I wonder how much was in the taxed economy. But it was all earned by very hard work.

Those are the guys paying 50K all cash for FDIC foreclosures houses that once sold for 250K and would cost 300K to build today.

The wise Latinos are a huge threat. They are re-starting the housing market. We should just say gracias.

Speaking of immigrants, a wall around Wisconsin is needed. The educated folks from Wisconsin are taking early retirement and coming south for our local higher education jobs, and they speak real funny too.

garage mahal said...

bagoh
I was just giving you shit.

"Progressives let illegals in, and now, they're even ruining their lives too!". It was just funny dude.

My argument is: give them status. Make them law abiding tax paying citizens. They are already in the workforce. If anything, employers would now have to compete for their labor which should help everyone. Deficit hawks should be all over this idea too.

Aridog said...

Leslyn said ...

Bush II had it right. But he was undercut by his own party.

Bush 43 is still advocating for reform ...as of December 2012 anyway.

jr565 said...

Althouse wants us to figure out the right answer based on sharp economic thinking. Yet why is her whole argument nothing but an appeal to emotionalism with little to no detail on how it actually would work economically.
Will documented workers have to be paid minimum wage? or a living wage? Are these workers going to be competing with Americans for unskilled labor posiotions and will the still be doing the jobs that Americans wont do.
Are liberals comfortorable, after all the talk about giving people a living wage, with exploiting this underclass because they are "serving our needs"? Well, slaves were serving our needs too. Wasn't that the whole argument of the South?

If Althouse is simply saying we should keep it exactly as it is now, but just register the illegals and let them keep getting paid below minimum wage thats' one thing. ONly that flies in the face of liberals saying we need a minimum wage in the first place.
And inevitably, it will lead to companies either paying people minium wage or below minimum wage for menial work. Which do you think they will choose?
And why would it be wrong to do that? They would be "serving our needs" right.

If Althouse is saying we need to normalize these workers but then give them a living wage how will that play out in the marketplace? How many fewer people will be doing these jobs if companies or businesses who need these workers have to cough up a minimu wage. They serve our needs when paid peanuts, but not when paid a minimum wage. That's the whole reason why they "serve our needs".
ANd look at the market now for menial work. What is the unemployment rate again? Flood the market with 11 million more unskilled workers. How many more hotels are going to hire maids, how many more restaurants are going to hire busboys?
Was this the kind of economic thinking Althouse was mentioning?
Well, I'm not saying I have the answer, but I am asking the question.

So why doesn't Althouse make as part of her calculus answers to such questions. since she seems to want to lecture us on "the right answer".

JL said...

This last election showed that you can't be the party that talks about issues that affect peoples lives and sets aside appealing to the emotions and expect to win. The Dems will use emotional appeals to pound on you and present you as a party of heartless monsters, when you present them with the cold hard facts and the data to back it up.

Take the minimum wage issue. Even if backed with data and graphs to show that increasing the minimum wage leads to higher unemployment among the low skilled American labor force, you will be met with the argument that people need a "living wage". That appeal to emotion will trump your data every time, and the minimum wage will be raised.

Just like arguments against Obamacare on economic grounds were met with the argument that we must do SOMEthing to help the people who are dying because they have no health insurance. More heads will nod to the latter statement than to arguments about doctor shortages or rising premiums.

The Dems know this. The Repubs need to learn to turn their cold hard facts into emotional appeals if they want to win. Call it pandering if you like; but it works.

bagoh20 said...

"My argument is: give them status. Make them law abiding tax paying citizens. They are already in the workforce."

I agree, because being forced underground just makes them enviably free of the costs of living under socialism.

But, doesn't it bother you to reward people for flagrantly breaking the law. Why won't more just flock to cross that line and get that easy prize? Do we want that, because, I know these people, and they have a lot of friends and relatives back home just waiting for the day.

leslyn said...

"Or, are we now going to make unskilled farm work a minimum wage job?....If you are a poor and unskilled citizen in this country you better worry about your job security. Not that there is much opportunity, but you're about to compete with people who will do it for far less."

That's been the situation for decades. But who's competing? Who do you see standing around at Home Depot waiting for pickup work?

Why not get taxpayers out of this; workers who don't have to hide in the woodwork; who don't flee in high speed car chases from the police; and who don't die abandoned in the desert or in containers as if they were worth less than insects.

I know that last bit will draw scorn for compassion, but here's the upside: we wouldn't have to pay for caskets.

leslyn said...

Hey there, Aridog. Thanks for the update.

DADvocate said...

Bottom line, some senators are coming up with a plan to deal with illegal immigration. Something that they've yet to deal with effectively because moneyed interests want illegal immigrants available for cheap labor. The plan will screw middle and lower class American, but it's their own fault because we don't speak Spanish and paid taxes to support public schools that don't effectively teach Spanish.

Any analysis done will support the preferred path of the moneyed class. If it doesn't it will be ignored, just as Obama ignored his economic panel. Whatever plan is put into action will benefit the rich more than any other group.

Republicans are urged to get smarter and lie like Democrats. The income inequality gap will continue to grow and the political parties will see who's the smartest in that arena by who's the most effective liar.

The government will continue to mismanage Social Security funds and similar funds justifying allowing more illegal immigrants to enter the country.

The needs and wishes of the actual citizens won't matter as long as the rich and powerful get richer and more powerful. If you complain, you're a nativist. You're screwed because you didn't accept and adapt to reality.

Ad infinitum. Amazing how harsh people who know they are safe and protected can be.

leslyn said...

"But, doesn't it bother you to reward people for flagrantly breaking the law. Why won't more just flock to cross that line and get that easy prize? Do we want that, because, I know these people, and they have a lot of friends and relatives back home just waiting for the day."

Law of diminishing returns. There are already more people going back to Mexico and lots fewer trying to get in, because of the recession.

edutcher said...

somefeller said...

Spoken like man who has virtually no contact with the left side of the bell curve.

Not true! Haven't you seen me trade bon mots with people like edutcher? Granted, such interactions are limited, but still, you make it sound like I live in a bubble!


Mom's basement is more like the Black Hole.

And, considering you have yet to come no closer to bon mots than tired, Lefty snark, when you actually have something witty to say, let us know.

Your stuff reminds me of Tony Randall doing his Robert Montgomery impression while singing, "You're Blase".

Or Rex Reed trying to impress people with how sophisticated he is.

NotquiteunBuckley said...

I got it:

Ethanol schemes by rich white fat Democrats are starving Latinos every single day.

How long will you allow children to die so rich fat white Democrats can get even richer through back-room deals that force the public to buy their killer product.

And remember, we are not trying to win a debate on the merits. We are trying to kill our political opponents like Obama killed Romney.

bagoh20 said...

"There are already more people going back to Mexico and lots fewer trying to get in, because of the recession."

So even you aren't counting on it getting better with this President. But, someday we will get a new one and the economy will improve.

And you should know that, if they could get legal status they would not be going back. It's the ones who have to struggle avoiding the law that are going back. So you have to thank conservatives for that.

Kirk Parker said...

Althouse,

I hope you're just posing these questions with a straight face, because...

"In this political theater, who's most likely to take pratfalls on the public stage?"

... in today's one-sided media environment, this question is laughable if it's not rhetorical and/or ironic, and in this:

"We don't kick them out because we want them here, whether we admit it to ourselves or not. "

... there is absolutely no we here--some of us want them here, some of us don't; some of us benefit (or think we do), some of us are harmed (or think we are)... in other words the very model of a modern controversial subject!

Hagar said...

Just to be clear:

My uncle was my sponsor, and before I could come over here, both of us had to sign a declaration that we clearly understood that if I should ever "become a burden to the American taxpayer (i.e. apply for any welfare program), I would be summarily deported, and my uncle would be billed for the costs of the process.

At the time I thought this a little harsh as I thought it meant forever, but I now understand that it really only meant until I applied for citizenship and was accepted.
At the time this meant a waiting period of 5 years to become eligible, or after 90 days of active military service.
I would expect the visas issued to the now "undocumented aliens" to read the same - and mean it.

The other thing everybody here need to keep in mind is that in 1803 all of North America south of Canada and west of the Mississippi, except for a narrow strip up along the west bank of the Mississippi up to the future St. Louis, belonged to Spain. Hence Nevada, MO, and Nuevo Madrid, MS. Napoleon did not sell Jefferson anywhere near to the amount of territory that Jefferson claimed he did. It is just that after Waterloo, neither France nor Spain was in any position to object.

Next, the Mexican landgrab of 1846 engineered by the Polk administration by a very wicked war indeed, caught a substantial number of Mexican citizens within the area annexed. Most did not mind that much, since a large reason they were in the area to start with was that they, or their ancestors, had not got along well with the Mexico City government, and if the gringos would protect them from the depredations by the Indians as they promised to do, that would be a good thing.
However, after the Civil War these now American citizens were subject to considerable mistreatment under what by then was definitely a Republican government, and the memories linger.
The Republicans of today need to work to get those perceptions of them as the party of occupation changed.

Hagar said...

Oh, and incidentally, Polk was a Democrat.

Inga said...

Ah Chickelit, you seem to have forgotten your own mistaken identity with regards to a video in that thread, how convenient of you not to mention your own battle of wits with our mutual friend. ;)

bardseyeview said...

We want them here? Who's we? Only the upper middle class whose lawns and roofs benefit from their cheap labor.

The working-class whites and blacks priced out of the labor market by the eleven million sure don't benefit from their presence.

edutcher said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
edutcher said...

Hagar said...

Durbin, Schumer, Menendez, Graham, McCain, and Rubio —

So simmer down people; this bunch of clowns can't possibly come up with anything but an over-complicated mess that won't work even if by some miracle they get it passed through Congress.


Another "We have to pass it to see what's in it"?

Joy!

President-Mom-Jeans said...

Nice to see Inga was able to rouse her tired saggy old body out of her alcohol induced stupor for the crack of noon.

I was afraid that all of the exertion of a marathon download of stupidity in last nights thread would have kept you away from your keyboard until much later in the afternoon.

Anglelyne said...

Hagar: Next, the Mexican landgrab of 1846 engineered by the Polk administration by a very wicked war indeed, caught a substantial number of Mexican citizens within the area annexed. Most did not mind that much, since a large reason they were in the area to start with was that they, or their ancestors, had not got along well with the Mexico City government, and if the gringos would protect them from the depredations by the Indians as they promised to do, that would be a good thing.
However, after the Civil War these now American citizens were subject to considerable mistreatment under what by then was definitely a Republican government, and the memories linger.
The Republicans of today need to work to get those perceptions of them as the party of occupation changed.
[my bolding]

Not to get into a digression re the wisdom or justice of the Mexican war, but a side comment re the "stolen land" argument for the alleged "right" of Mexicans to emigrate as they please to the U.S. Note the two bolded bits, above. Putting aside for the moment the fact that the millions of newcomers are not the dispossessed kin of the original Spanish colonialists in the area, it's illuminating to reflect upon the usage of "occupier", "colonizer", "indigene" and other such sloppily-thrown around terms in this debate. The "Mexicans" (and they're weren't very many of them) were occupying and colonizing somebody else's land before the "gringos" showed up, so it might behoove all the moralizing conquistadores to put a sock in it on that score. (Not that the they will, of course.)

john marzan said...

the people of hong kong have a better understanding of immigration and migrant workers issues than the out of touch GOP elites and it's approach is smart

http://politicaljunkie.blogspot.com/2013/01/hong-kong-natives-protest-recent.html

Pogo said...

The demand to be "smart" is akin to the push for Catholicism to get more modern and quit tying to follow its faith.

Get with the times!

The gods of the copybook headings may never win the popular vote, but they always prevail.

john marzan said...

two things need to change before USA starts legalizing and implementing a guest worker program. without these, i would vote no to a potential immigration reform.

1) First, eliminate access to free K-12 public school education for FUTURE illegal aliens.

2) No more automatic citizenship for children born in the U.S. to 2 non-American parents. that is, replace jus soli with jus sanguinis.

Hagar said...

I am from New Mexico, not Arizona, nor - praised be the Lod! - California, so I am not buying into the Aztlan, or whatever, nonsense.

What I am talking about is individual behaviors - the lawyers perpetrating the great land grant swindles in northern and western New Mexico Territory, or the Texas cow-boys streaming in across the south and bringing their prejudices with them.

Inga said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Inga said...

Presiden Mom Jeans said,
"Nice to see Inga was able to rouse her tired saggy old body out of her alcohol induced stupor for the crack of noon.

I was afraid that all of the exertion of a marathon download of stupidity in last nights thread would have kept you away from your keyboard until much later in the afternoon."

1/26/13, 12:39 PM

President Mom Jeans/ Whoresoftheinternet/ Methadras, CEO-MMP, be aware, I believe they are the same commenter. This person appears to be a sociopath.

I do not know this person, he follows myself and Garage from thread to thread and attacks on threads we have not even commented in.

This person has stated that he wishes to see my daughter raped and killed and he has even said he wishes Garage's chronically ill child to die. All four personas use almost identical phrases, so it isn't a stretch to come to the conclusion they are one in the same.

President-Mom-Jeans said...

Yes Inga, because three people don't like you and say mean things they all must be the same person. I post in whatever threads I find interesting or relevant, some which contain your stupid postings, some which don't. Same thing for the fat union fetishist.

And for the record, I certainly have never called for any harm to your daugher, since I believe "her" to be a Lennay Kekua type figment of your fevered imagination. Go ahead and search my posts, as I have stated earlier I have never deleted anything, unlike your hypocrital rotund ass.


I also have only expressed concern about poor parenting habits and the effect they have on health. I have nothing to do with those other posters, and while neither endorsing nor condemning their postings, certainly feel no sympathy if they hurt your delicate sensabilities.

Why don't you go call posters wenches some more? Girl power. Or old woman power in your case.

Basta! said...

I have a big problem with this WE stuff too. WE don't all like it, and WE don't all enable it.

My maternal grandfather and my father were both roofers (union) their whole lives. The union jobs were commercial, and they always had months where there was no union work. A lot of guys did side-jobs, and some even started up small companies.

When I had to replace the roof on my house about 5 years ago, I deliberately looked for one of these union-trained guys and hired his company. He gave me a good price and did a great job. I'm sure I could have gotten a lower price with a contractor who used illegals, but I wouldn't even consider it.

Contrast this with the real-estate developer-speculator who bought the lot right next door to me and had all non-English speakers on his crew. I watched them put up the house, and they routinely ignored the building codes. For example, the basement legally had to be so many feet deep, they cut corners by excavating less than half the required depth, and they skipped putting in material legally required for waterproofing. As a result, the house wound up 6 feet taller than the legal limit, and probably also has mold issues now. But hey, no problem, the attorney for the developer recently served on the city's Zoning Board of Appeals, so this mess got signed off on.

Oh, and I make less than 20 grand a year, so this isn't a case of, well, yeah, maybe you can throw your money around coz you're so rich. You can bet that any contractor who would hire illegals is cutting corners in other areas too. And the illegals hired either don't know the regulations, or do but are too afraid to speak up, or don't give a shit.

Inga said...

President Mom Jeans NEVER comments on the topic of the blog post, choosing to engage in stalker like behavior instead.

This type of commenter does nothing to advance the discussion.

I won't comment again on him in this thread, my apologies for veering from the subject.

President-Mom-Jeans said...

Wow, except that I was posting on this very thread long before your little martyr dumb ass did a single post. Although I know you never let facts get in the way of a good victimhood plea. You nonsensical post menstrual cow.

President-Mom-Jeans said...
Ah, the ivory tower law professor growing fat off the federally backed loans putting law students into massive bankruptcy proof debt for worthless law degrees graces us with advice on how to stop being so "ugly" when it comes to immigration.

Fuck you.

There really isn't anything else to say.

1/26/13, 10:45 AM

Basta! said...

I have a big problem with this WE stuff too. WE don't all like it, and WE don't all enable it.

My maternal grandfather and my father were both roofers (union) their whole lives. The union jobs were commercial, and they always had months where there was no union work. A lot of guys did side-jobs, and some even started up small companies.

When I had to replace the roof on my house about 5 years ago, I deliberately looked for one of these union-trained guys and hired his company. He gave me a good price and did a great job. I'm sure I could have gotten a lower price with a contractor who used illegals, but I wouldn't even consider it.

Contrast this with the real-estate developer-speculator who bought the lot right next door to me and had all non-English speakers on his crew. I watched them put up the house, and they routinely ignored the building codes. For example, the basement legally had to be so many feet deep, they cut corners by excavating less than half the required depth, and they skipped putting in material legally required for waterproofing. As a result, the house wound up 6 feet taller than the legal limit, and probably also has mold issues now. But hey, no problem, the attorney for the developer recently served on the city's Zoning Board of Appeals, so this mess got signed off on.

Oh, and I make less than 20 grand a year, so this isn't a case of, well, yeah, maybe you can throw your money around coz you're so rich. You can bet that any contractor who would hire illegals is cutting corners in other areas too. And the illegals hired either don't know the regulations, or do but are too afraid to speak up, or don't give a shit.

bagoh20 said...

Inga,

If this was my blog, I'd ban whoresoftheinternet at least. It is exceptionally foul.

You know I disagree with you most of the time, and some of the things you write really piss me off, but I have never understood the flat-out misogyny and hate a very few on here send your way or at Garage.

It's just cowardly adolescent crap. I suggest you just not respond to them. It only makes it worse. If you walk down the street and see some dog shit, you don't go roll around in it. That's all it is, just foul crap along the way to be ignored.

When you do roll around in it, I have no sympathy, plus it stinks up the thread.

Hagar said...

@Basta,

There is such a thing as a City Department of Public Works, which has a thing called the Building Inspections Division attached to it.
If your city is corrupt, that is not the "non-English speakers" fault, unless, of course, they, like you, are legal residents of your fair city and long-time voters.

cf said...

Good subject and discussion guys, thanks. Sorry I am late. A few points I'd like to offer:

* Reagan's plan had a key third leg to make the stool stand that was never implemented, and it is a shame. That was administrating seasonal /temporary worker programs so all border flow for work could be documented and enforced. MayBee's analogy of Hong Kong is an example and our Bracero program of the 50s-60s was an early version.

I did understand that union efforts are what caused that to fail implementation, and I thank the Drill SGT for his background on Cesar Chavez' role with those battles.

It's too bad because my guesstimate is that about a third of those folks who have come in illegally and stayed would much prefer to return and keep and raise their families in their Spanish-speaking home country, but the rules of our functioning dysfunction make travel back and forth untenable. If you make it in, you gotta stay, may not be lucky enough to get in again. So, if you do get in, start helping the rest of your family in, too.

An honest system of this sort would help both Mexico and the US, the nations and their populations, to thrive.

* Language! What an emotional knot this one has become. Here is a subject for some logical dissection. (disclosure: I grew up on the Tex/Mex frontera, blessed my Spanish is innate, in case that indicates some bias I am blind to)

We are all expanded for acquiring another language, they are incubators for distinct ways of thinking that can barely be perceived without being embodied. So, assuming more languages are preferred, what is our best course?

That last Haiti meltdown a few years ago generated a comparison of colonized areas by language, does anyone else remember? Historically French colonies generally, Haiti being poster-child, had not fared well. English colonies, India an easy example, had somehow fostered muscular evolution and fearlessness. That had me ponder Latin America vs US, Canada.

Now Spanish, that is enfused with romantic, poignant richness unmatched by English, also seems to have a debilitating seed, a deeply patron/peon complex. Mexico is a good example of a nation with formidable promise that has only muddles through, enslaved somehow to have/have-not mind sets.

I find it sad that La Raza wraps itself with the very language that enslaved the Nahuatls to Spanish overlord. If they aren't going to institute ancestral dialect, why not choose the language that first put Everyman equal to the King?

I am trying to explain why my stand that English in the States should be Primary is not me being nativist, but opportunistic for immigrants.

My ideal language curriculum would be English primary, Mandarin and Spanish secondarily, then the rest, with an emphasis on some enforced ancient Greek, haha.

Happy trails, CompaƱeros

PS Glad W still has such a heart for the Good Work, what an underappreciated, to put it kindly, leader of the world he was for us. (OK, NOW I've done it LOL, can't just leave it alone!)

leslyn said...

Basta, good point. But if at least the present, established, otherwise-law-abiding illegal had a path to legality, life would be harder on that amoral contractor.

We need to work both ends of this problem, because millions of established, hard-working illegals aren't going to "self-deport." If we don't have to chase down everybody (which is already an impossible job) we can concentrate more on deporting the undesirable.

Plus more money would flow into our tax system.

Principle CAN work with pragmatism.

Inga said...

Jr. As to your question about having to learn multiple languages to live in this country, it's already happening. My grandchildren take Chinese lessons per their father's encouragement. He is a manufacturer of goods made exclusively in China and feels China will have an even greater presence in this country in years to come. In school they learn Spanish.

Christopher said...

Don't appeal to fears. Don't resort to ideology. Actually figure out the right answer on the basis of sharp economic thinking, and be prepared to explain it clearly.

Ah, the Madison effect.

Nothing says "let's have a smart discussion" like painting the right with accusations about fear and "ideology."

I'm late to the party but Althouse's appeal for rational, fact-based economic arguments on the issue has been answered for only about the past twenty or thirty years, as shown by the many comments above.

Disappointed!

Also--and I haven't read the last 50 or so comments--Althouse is a bit loose with comments about the illegals benefiting "us." Again, this has been well-parsed for years. Democratic politicians benefit from illegal immigration as part of their voter-import program. (The law means nothing to the left, only power). Business factions benefit by paying lower wages. Relatively unskilled American workers get creamed. So does social cohesion and the rule of law. (Just as one digression, Mexico is not a land where even the pretense of impartiality before the law carries a lot of weight. Culture matters. If you import tens of million of people from that culture and ratify their lawlessness, gee, I wonder if that would have any effect on the U.S.)

Anyway, the discussion is heading off into other directions now. It just bugs me to see our esteemed host frame this in an ignorant way. I mean "esteemed host" without sarcasm. I mean "ignorant way" just as an assessment. It's like she doesn't know how this has been hashed out for three decades.

President-Mom-Jeans said...

In the spirit of the embrace of the language of the majority of the illegals that Althouse extols, and her praise for the utility of multilinguism.

La grasa vieja vaca tiene nietos imaginarios.

leslyn said...

"President mom jeans" post of 1:28 PM is a perfect example of a vicious troll with nothing useful to say.

So hey, PMJ, take off your mask and put your name up. You're a cowardly bully (with some serious mental health issues) who can only take potshots from the dark.

I dare you. Double-dog dare you.

leslyn said...

"President mom jeans" post of 1:28 PM is a perfect example of a vicious troll with nothing useful to say.

So hey, PMJ, take off your mask and put your name up. You're a cowardly bully (with some serious mental health issues) who can only take potshots from the dark.

President-Mom-Jeans said...

Leslyn,

I'm sorry that you don't find anything useful in pointing out that an ivory tower academic living in lilly white Madison Wisconsin may not have a good perspective on the problem and effects of illegal immigration. I guess I didn't get the memo that you are now the arbiter of what constitutes having something useful to say.

But here's some more multiculturalism for you.

Ir a follarte con una cuchara oxidada.

Did you find that useful?

ken in sc said...

The problem with illegal immigrants is not with those who are here and working, it's with those who are here and not working or pretending to not be working. Anyone who has stood in line at a checkout in Wal-Mart or Aldis has seen non-English speaking people with multiple carts of junk food paid for with EBT cards. If you don't live in normal America you may not see this, but most Americans do. Food Stamp and WICC people do not check immigration status of recipients. Emergency rooms don't either. This has to be costing enormous sums. Ordinary Americans see it and resent it.

Seeing Red said...

May Bee, that trip was in my pre-internet days. I found out later by reading a dead tree that Thailand had a coup that week. (grin)

It looks like other than for medical reasons, I won't be travelling outside the US for awhile. Need to save my money for free Obamacare.

bagoh20 said...

Ken, I see it every day. At some markets I go to the vast majority of customers buy their stuff with zero cash of their own. And, I see them buying items that I don't because they might be too expensive. Wait. I am buying that stuff, but they take it home. Dammit!

ken in sc said...

You're right Bagoh

Hagar said...

Yes, but "illegals" do not vote and are not responsible for the elected clowns who established these programs. We are.

Shana said...

Th"The plan will screw middle and lower class American, but it's their own fault because we don't speak Spanish and paid taxes to support public schools that don't effectively teach Spanish.

Any analysis done will support the preferred path of the moneyed class."

This. I would be more amenable to free borders if we dismantled the welfare system and taxpayer public schools.

chickelit said...

Great post, cf!

ken in sc said...

To clarify my earlier comment, if you live within walking distance of a major university, you do not live in normal America. You live in what I call the NPR archipelago. You probably shop at Wholefoods or Trader Joes. Normal America shops at discount stores like Wal-Mart, Aldis, and Sav-a-Lot,—or in Texas, HEB.

Shana said...

"If you don't live in normal America you may not see this, but most Americans do."

There is definitely a disconnect between what one sees while shopping in a Texas Walmart vs. a Madison, WI or D.C. Whole Foods.

Shana said...

Actually, whether I shop at HEB or Walmart depends on whether or not I am buying produce or office supplies with the rest of my groceries.

Jose_K said...

Send the GOP a copy of The Ultimate resource II

Shana said...

Apparently illegals rank above low-skilled black workers in the "who we are supposed to care about more" sweepstakes. It makes me ill to think about it. Once again, all this "economic analysis" benefits the rich, white, baby boomers. I guess I'm a progressive today. Down with the man!

Baron Zemo said...


Did Menendez insert anything in the bill to help out underage Dominican hookers?

Because we know that he likes to insert his penis into them.

Or at least we would have learned about that before the election if the main stream media was not a wholly owned subsidiary of the Democratic party.

ken in sc said...

I like the HEB when I am in Texas.

Shana said...

Baby Boomers have screwed up everything. They gotta make sure they get their social security and Medicare. To hell with the grandkids. Learn to speak Spanish, kid! Deal with it.

chickelit said...

To clarify my earlier comment, if you live within walking distance of a major university, you do not live in normal America. You live in what I call the NPR archipelago. You probably shop at Wholefoods or Trader Joes. Normal America shops at discount stores like Wal-Mart, Aldis, and Sav-a-Lot,—or in Texas, HEB.

ken, I hear your pain. A minor nitpick: Aren't Trader Joe's and Aldis commonly owned? And we have a Trader Joe's in Oceanside but no university and no Whole Paycheck.

Baron Zemo said...

I like the herb when I am in Colorado.

But then I have trouble with my eyes.

Lydia said...

Greta Van Sustern, in an interview with Rubio a few days ago, pretty much captures the reason it's dumb for Republicans to think "smart" messaging will broaden their appeal to voters:

VAN SUSTEREN: Suppose you're thinking about Social Security and you're a Democrat and thinking here the Republicans want to revamp it they say it's not going to last, that it's not sustainable, but the Democrats say, yes, it is. Why would you switch to be a Republican, why would you switch? Why would you buy that?

RUBIO: Because I think that people understand math when you explain this is how much money comes in, this is how much goes out, and as a result this is the year we run out of money unless we do a few simple and important things, people understand that.

VAN SUSTEREN: I'm here -- I'm here, I'm a Republican I'm here to help you, believe my math?

jr565 said...

Leslyn wrote:


That's been the situation for decades. But who's competing? Who do you see standing around at Home Depot waiting for pickup work?

I do recognize that, and that's why I'm saying in that regard its a good thing since you'll register people who are working.

The problem will be this. Right now there is unskilled labor that is bought under the table and off the books. If though you make it official, then comapnies will need to register workers, making it on the books. Are those jobs still going to be paid below minimum wage or will the left demand living wages for stuff like picking tomatoes or work as a busboy.

If not then its undermining the concept of minimum wage, isn't it? So companies will realize the they can pay people less than minimum wage and have it be above board. Why then would they not move more menial jobs that they are now paying minimum wage to jobs that they don't have to pay minimum wage for?

And if you decide that those jobs that Americans won't do become the new minimum wage jobs, then you are going to undermine the hiring prospects of millions of poor people. Be ause those positions are only valued to employers because they can pay less than minimum wage. If they have to pay minimum wage they will simply hire less people.

And so, you are going to have poor people competing with even poorer people for,jobs with even lower pay or for slightly higher paying jobs, but ones that are much scarcer.

Aaron said...

I had to spend a few months and some serious money to get my wife, who is married to a US citizen (me) and who is the mother of a US citizen (my daughter) a green card.

That should have cost me 50 bucks and been done in one day. But no. The bureaucracy has so many hoops to jump through. We had to hire a frickin consultant.

But some people don't need to do that. They are special.

My bitterness informs my policy preferences: increase legal immigration, offer ways for illegals who could easily be legal to become legal, but do not make it sound fine and dandy to be an illegal alien.

Or you can refund me my time and money.

Aaron said...

"The problem with illegal immigrants is not with those who are here and working, it's with those who are here and not working or pretending to not be working. Anyone who has stood in line at a checkout in Wal-Mart or Aldis has seen non-English speaking people with multiple carts of junk food paid for with EBT cards. If you don't live in normal America you may not see this, but most Americans do. Food Stamp and WICC people do not check immigration status of recipients. Emergency rooms don't either. This has to be costing enormous sums. Ordinary Americans see it and resent it."

This is true, but you also see plenty of Honey Boo Boos doing it too. The sad part is when they cannot even learn how to use the EBT cards correctly and slow up the line. (The American fat-asses, not the immigrants.)

I think Wal-Mart should have a Tax-payer Patriot express line where EBT is not allowed.

Dante said...

I'm simply calling for real economic analysis and not emotion. Some of you are expressing the conventional thoughts and emotions, but I'm saying this is clouding the question and causing Republicans to look like they pander to nativists.

I agree Ann. So I've done some of the economic analysis for CA. Here is the way it goes.

1. The Second Generation does slightly better than the first generation in a host of demographic indicators.

2. The Third Generation does worse than the second generation, with gang affiliation, delinquency, crime, income, and illegitimacy all significantly worse compared to the 2nd generation.

3. The fertility rate of Hispanics is a bit over 3.

4. The average CA household income of Hispanics is about $44K.

5. The cost of K - 13 for 3 children is about $400,000, far more than the Hispanic household will pay in taxes.

6. Hispanics as a demographic eschew education, having a college matriculation rate significantly lower than blacks.

7. To put the cost into perspective, half of CA school children are now Hispanic, so half of that goes to Hispanics, at about $32.5B.

8. Agriculture is only 2% of the CAs GDP, yet is the primary reason for importing illegals.

9. The US has a guest worker program, but it is so riddled with regulations, and so it is cheaper to use illegals for labor.

10. CA has a massive unemployment rate, particularly among teens. Jobs typically taken by teens are now filled with career Hispanics.


Now, I do not blame the illegals for coming here. I simply blame our government. I do not blame the business interests that would hire illegals, as I have seen them do it in a legal manner, set up by the government to encourage the illegal.

This started when the SOS initiative, which would ban CA services to illegals, was struck down by a federal judge as "Unconstitutional." Thereby opening the door to subsidized labor.

What I do not understand is how this is to the benefit of CA, to subsidize AG and construction, both of which do not add much to CA GDP (total 6%), and essentially take on huge tax liabilities, put the society at risk as unlike Asian immigrates, Hispanics do not as a group assimilate to the 21st century worker. The hard working agrarian culture of Hispanics appears to be lost by the 3rd generation, and the result is a massive source of people who are uneducated, use welfare more, have out of wedlock more, all which are risk factors and expensive to the state.

The simple way to stop the damage is to implement e-verify. Of course, employers don't want to, and it is legitimate for them to try to block it.

What is illegitimate in my view is to declare a law "Unconstitutional," and for the governments to not protect their own citizens from the abuse of taxes for illegals.

What is arrogant is the assumption that our PC schooling will make millions of Hispanics into 21st century workers.

To be clear, I'm not opposed to immigration, though in the current system it seems it would be in the US's interest to import more Southeast Asians. It's nearly impossible to legally immigrate, and for some reason the high-tech sectors, Hospitals, etc., all high value add fields, for some reason require legality.

Dante said...

Ken, I see it every day. At some markets I go to the vast majority of customers buy their stuff with zero cash of their own. And, I see them buying items that I don't because they might be too expensive. Wait. I am buying that stuff, but they take it home. Dammit!

You know, one might think they would say "Thank you," but instead you get the Obamaphone lady who complained, in a recent interview, that there aren't enough free minutes.

Also, and unfortunately, this does not mean you are going to heaven. Forced good will doesn't count.

Marla Singer said...

To me, the economic question is pretty clear. For the nation as a whole, immigration (even illegal) is a net positive with some very notable drawbacks. I think we need a robust guest worker-type program so that there is a much easier path for people to come here legally (although the issues that sinz52 and cryptical bring up are quite real economic issues. I notice Althouse prefers not respond to those instead just issuing a blanket accusation that commenters are just being emotional, which is pretty rich from the lady who spent much of the 2012 election wanting to protect Obama, the most powerful man in the world). Anyhow. In my opinion, having a guest worker visa available at low cost and with relatively low hassle would encourage more of the types of immigrants we want, and if it were coupled with robust enforcement of immigration violations (whether on the employee or employer end, or both), somewhat less of the type we don't, along (almost certainly) with some increase in the costs of food and certain other services that employ large numbers of illegals at very low pay (not all illegals actually work for very low pay, though most in agriculture do).

I am not sure why Democrats always seem to get excited about a "path to citizenship." It doesn't seem to me that someone whose very presence in this country is in violation of federal law is very deserving of citizenship, but I could support a path to becoming, say, a documented legal alien. Legally, though, even this seems to me problematic in a country that supposedly believes in the rule of law. Telling a broad class of people that the laws don't apply to them is bad precedent, both because it provides special treatment to some and because it excludes (on the basis primarily of ethnicity) others. In practice, we all know the law doesn't get applied equally in all circumstances (Hello, David Gregory), and in my opinion, the notion of the rule of law, while valuable, is becoming pretty anorexic. If we want to salvage it, we probably need to start doing that by applying the laws as equally as is reasonable, and excusing violations of the law when those are blatant violations committed with intent just because it is economically convenient to do so (or, worse, politically) strikes me as a pretty bad idea.

And here I admit my bias: My husband is an Asian immigrant who went to the great expense and trouble of immigrating legally. He maintains legal status, mostly because it's the right thing to do, but also because as he is not Hispanic, there is no large bloc of Democrats who is likely to empathize with his plight. If you want free shit in this country, you really need to get the Democrats to empathize with you in some way. Eventually, the Republicans will be convinced to go along with it in the name of "not being stupid."

MayBee said...

Seeing Ted- sorry to hear about your health problems! Hong Jong was a great choice anyway. Such a
vibrant city. Something for everyone to love.

MayBee said...

Bah! Seeing Red

n.n said...

DADvocate:

Amazing how harsh people who know they are safe and protected can be.

Exactly! It is dissociation of risk which causes corruption. It is dreams of instant (or immediate) gratification which motivates its progress.

The problem in American is that both the subsidized lower and opportunistic upper class benefit from corruption. They are squeezing the middle class through redistributive change and similar policies. They are corrupting the population as a whole through policies which denigrate individual dignity and devalue human life. They sponsor generational genocide through the normalization of promiscuity, homosexual behavior, and of course sanctioning a woman's right to commit premeditated murder of her children. They pursue establishment of monopolies, especially authoritarian, because they prefer not to compete.

The economic fallout of unmeasured immigration is a progressive displacement of American men, women, and children at work, school, and throughout society. It gives justification to redistributive change, in part because it gives rise to progressive inflation (e.g. Obamacare). They are manufacturing the problems to which they subsequently offer solutions, at a price, including sacrificing your wealth, dignity, and progeny.

It's not guns which kill children. It's women who desire to preserve their material, physical, and social standing who kill their children. It's inferior, egoistic males who seek to normalize this degenerate behavior.

rcocean said...

"Althouse is a bit loose with comments about the illegals benefiting "us." Again, this has been well-parsed for years. Democratic politicians benefit from illegal immigration as part of their voter-import program. (The law means nothing to the left, only power). Business factions benefit by paying lower wages. Relatively unskilled American workers get creamed. So does social cohesion and the rule of law.

Smartest comment on the thread. I'll add this: the rest of us don't get Jack shit out of massive illegal and legal immigration except more crowded highways, national parks, beaches, etc. Remember when liberals were all in favor of ZPG? Probably not, but they were. Lesson: Never trust a liberal - there's always a hidden agenda.

Shana said...

In my area, we have our equal share of Hispanic, black, and white EBT card users. The Hispanics are at least pleasant to their children generally, and I would much rather be behind them in the Walmart checkout line. But I can't get over the fact that it is harder for the other two demographics to get out of the EBT line, because we are subsidizing a cheaper class of foreign worker. Minimum wage laws exacerbate the problem (more good intentions). I think immigration can be a good thing, but they need to compete on equal terms with the rest of the labor market, and not add to the welfare burden.

Kirk Parker said...

Althouse,

"The GOP will readjust somehow."

That "somehow" might turn out to be "go the way of the Whigs".

Re: the California road trip--how about a visiting professorship at cal State Fresno?


Aridog,

"In our first century no immigrants were documented in the fashion of today...There is no easy answer"

Quite true, but in our first century there was nothing resembling even the slightest hint of today's welfare state, either.


Dante said...

I'll bet I know more immigrants and more illegal ones than anyone in here

Perhaps, but I would suppose I'm over 1000, certainly with the many immigrants I've worked with over the years. The sad truth is Americans don't want to be engineers, and so we have to import them from countries like India, that value engineering.

john marzan said...

We are a nation of immigrants, unquestionably.

canada and australia are also nations built on immigrants. but they seem to do a better job in selecting the type of immigrants they allow to become citizens.

john marzan said...

"The GOP will readjust somehow."
That "somehow" might turn out to be "go the way of the Whigs".


like the California GOP?

and if california is the model for america's future, the GOP is doomed.

john marzan said...

It's too bad because my guesstimate is that about a third of those folks who have come in illegally and stayed would much prefer to return and keep and raise their families in their Spanish-speaking home country, but the rules of our functioning dysfunction make travel back and forth untenable. If you make it in, you gotta stay, may not be lucky enough to get in again. So, if you do get in, start helping the rest of your family in, too.

i disagree. because it's so easy to get in due to lack of enforcement.

"family reunification" in the past meant the mexican worker returns home to mexico, because his wife and kids still live there. but after U.S. supreme court in 1982 allowed illegal aliens the right to get free k-12 public education, it made the decision easier for mexican workers to bring their kids illegally to the states (and wife to look after them) since they don't have to worry about paying for their children's U.S. education. so it made no sense for the illegal alien workers to return "home" because his/her family is already in the states.

Aridog said...

Kirk parker said ...

... but in our first century there was nothing resembling even the slightest hint of today's welfare state, either.

True enough. That pretty much means we, collectively, have created our own problem...beginning perhaps with the Homestead Act of 1862.

john marzan said...

canada and australia are also nations built on immigrants. but they seem to do a better job in selecting the type of immigrants they allow to become citizens.

Canada has a tendency, most of the time, to keep things simple...e.g., the KISS principle in setting up the rules. Australia, on the other hand, is a classic social/progressive state, founded by felons and surround by protective ocean where "border crossing" is more than a 50 yard swim. Adopt Australia's state model in the USA and you merely acquire more of the welfare state Parker refers to above.

Rusty said...

Here's how this works;
Chicago is a sanctuary city. Cook county ids a sanctuary county. Simply means no questions asked about your legality. Illinois has the fourth largest hispanic population in the US. Chicago has the second largest urban hispanic population next to LA.
Should Jose and Hose B manage to run the gauntlet and make it to the windy city they can apply for and get foodstamps, ADC,Medicaid and a housing allowance. Once they have all that they buy IDs and green cards that will allow them to work. They go get a job and keep the bennies. On their W2 form they claim 5,7,9,15 dependents. Where are the dependents? In Mexico. It can't be verified and most get away with it.
Ain't America great!

chickelit said...

and if california is the model for america's future, the GOP is doomed.

Unfortunately, California pretty much still is the model for America's future and the one party state: link

Texan99 said...

I'm solidly with Althouse on this one. The 11 million workers are here because we hire them. There is no public consensus in favor of stopping them at the borders; if there were, they'd be turned into the police as soon as they put their heads up and tried to find food and shelter, but almost literally no one does that. Who wants to send a guy to jail for taking a job to feed his family?

For me, the big problem is that you can't have both open borders and a safety net that costs so much you have to borrow money to pay for it. And I doubt the political will of the country to stop the safety net. It will be a big shock if we legalize 11 immigrants and 30% of them become entitled to employment benefits the very first day we enforce the minimum-wage and benefits laws in their favor. Already the biggest reason for resentment against illegals is that they're sucking up public health and education resources.

I have no patience with the complaint that low immigrant wages depress our labor market. I hate to see conservatives buck the free market like that. Forget privileged college professors: why can't any public-school educated American compete successfully against an illiterate immigrant? If he doesn't offer something better, why should he command higher wages?

Texan99 said...

I meant, of course, "unemployment benefits."

Rich Rostrom said...

If the Republican Party came down for strict border enforcement, strict employment verification, and mass deportation of illegals, it would win every election by landslide margins.

These policies have overwhelming support in every segment of America (even Hispanics) except the academic-media-political complex, and businesses dependent on illegal immigrant labor. And Jews, who for entirely understandable historical reasons, are reflexively hostile to anything resembling nativism and sympathetic to immigrants.

Because of obstruction by those forces, actual immigration enforcement has never even been tried.

Which Prof. Althouse mistakes for popular support for immigration laxity.

I saw a comment a few years back from a veteran pollster. He said that in all his years, he had never seen such a huge difference between elite opinion and mass opinion as on immigration.

Prof. Althouse is part of that elite - which has blocked effective action against illegal immigrants. Now she cites the absence of such action as evidence of popular support for illegal immigration amnesty. This is very much like the parricide seeking mercy as an orphan.

john marzan said...

The 11 million workers are here

they're not all workers. many are still in school.

john marzan said...

Canada has a tendency, most of the time, to keep things simple...e.g., the KISS principle in setting up the rules. Australia, on the other hand, is a classic social/progressive state, founded by felons and surround by protective ocean where "border crossing" is more than a 50 yard swim.

and don't forget, from canada's POV the USA functions as an international "buffer zone".

Peter said...

Ann Althouse said, "I'm simply calling for real economic analysis and not emotion."

I can't imagine any economic analysis that says it would benefit the USA to import large numbers of low-skill immigrants.

Just about every other nation in the world looks at immigration from the PoV of, "What is this immigrant likely to do for us, and how likely is it that this immigrant will be a burden to taxpayers?"

It's all too easy for those with comfortable incomes and economically valuable skills to say, "Let 'em all in!" But the result is higher tax burdens (which slows the entire economy, and hastens offshoring) and reduced opportunities for citizens at the lower end of the economic ladder to survive without endless government handouts.

If the USA is such a strong attraction to immigrants (as it apparently is) then we can afford to be (and should be) choosy.

Asif MooXani said...

"Breaking News "Canada opens up Investor Immigrant Program"
Canada opens its Immigrant Investor Program based on following qualifying
criteria: -

. Two years management/business experience in the last five years

. Net-worth of $1.6 million

. One time cost of $180,000

If interested, please contact us immediately, as very few applications will
be accepted under this program with a submission deadline. You can email us
at info@sunenterprises.ca

Janeta Kim said...

I'm still trying to figure out how law that is capricious and enforced for political gain is "awesome", unless it is Old Testament-like, as in "terrible, evil, juggernaut", rather than Keanu Reeves in 1990.

I see no useful approach other than that of Althouse's dad, embittered and not smart. I'll play the game, as one must, but see no reason in participating, as the trajectory is unsustainable. http://goo.gl/UuchIe

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