Cowering behind a border wall

Over the next few weeks we can expect to hear a lot from Republicans about border security. What we will not hear is any explanation of what border security actually looks like. That’s because border security, as used in this debate, is nothing more than a diversion.

Despite the ugly rhetoric and the long series of mistakes, there may still be time for Republicans to get out ahead of this issue and build a 21st century immigration platform that we can look back on with pride for the next few decades. Thanks to the Democrats’ nervous dithering, the door is still open, but we are running out of time. Obama’s pending executive actions are going to force the issue to the front in a way that will give Republicans just enough rope for a good clean suicide.

If Republicans are going to have any hope of navigating the trap being laid for us, we’ve got to come to terms with a few realities around immigration, starting with the meaning of “border security.” Perhaps pictures might help. This is a secure border:

belgium

This is an insecure border:

gaza

Travelling from Egypt across the border into Gaza is a miserable, nearly impossible ordeal. No legitimate commerce can be maintained across that boundary. It is guarded by steel walls with watch towers manned by armed guards. Occasionally Egypt closes all traffic crossing the border (in recent months it has been closed almost all the time). And yet it remains one of the primary methods used by Hamas to move illegal goods and weapons into Gaza. It is a tense, insecure border and a consistent security problem consuming enormous energy and money.

Meanwhile people travel back and forth across the border between Holland and Belgium on their way to the bathroom. Border security operations there cost very little, yet with the exception of Dutch families crossing into Belgium to purchase fireworks, the border is entirely secure.

These two images illustrate the problem with the empty Republican rhetoric on “border security.” Building a healthy border capable of protecting a country’s sovereignty and interests starts and ends with policy. Holland is able to protect its sovereignty without steel walls because its political policies are aligned with its physical situation. They didn’t achieve a secure border by building a better fence. They achieved a secure border by building better political arrangements.

Egypt’s border with Gaza is a costly, dangerous and occasionally deadly human nightmare because the political arrangements governing that border are absolutely insane. No fences ever built will make that border safe until some political settlement is reached. In the meantime it will remain a barrier to trade, a massive economic burden, and a flash point for potentially destabilizing violence.

Real border security comes from sound policy.

The bad news for us is that we are the destabilizing force on our southern border. Fortunately, that is also the good news, since in theory it means that we are capable of fixing the problem.

Bad policy inside the United States has broken our border security in ways that are expensive and dangerous. First, our short-sighted and utterly failed attempt to manage our drug problem has turned our border into a war zone, feeding criminal gangs in neighboring countries. Second, we have shut down almost any practical means of legal immigration while refusing to craft enforceable laws against hiring illegals.

Want to secure the border, spend less taxpayer money, improve American economic competitiveness and create a massive economic shot in the arm? Fix those two problems.

Through a failed policy of blanket prohibition, we pay people to breach our border. That bounty is roughly $100bn a year, or about eight times as much as we spend on all aspects of customs and border control.

Tear down the walls and send home the dogs. We could end that illegal trade tomorrow by adopting regulatory schemes similar to what we use for liquor, prescription drugs, or Sudafed. We could still control usage, better than we do today, and crush the black market in illegal drugs with a regulated market.

Similar to illegal drugs, we dangle billions of dollars’ worth of incentives to illegal workers while blocking any access to meet that demand through legal channels. We have hundreds of solid options available for fixing this problem, including methods that would be market based and privately enforced, involving little government involvement. We can’t get started on any of them because we are less concerned about legal immigration than we are about protecting our culture from change.

We will achieve real border security when we start making intelligent policy choices. Republicans should be well positioned to lead the way on border security since many of the best solutions are based on market mechanisms rather than big government. Unfortunately, the GOP is not only the party of markets and commerce; it has become the central political expression of aging whites terrified of losing their cultural dominance.

That’s where Republican border security rhetoric confronts border security politics. The policies that will make America more powerful, wealthier, and more secure will also make America increasingly more diverse. Too many core Republican voters are willing to live in a weaker, poorer country so long as people who speak English and look like me remain securely dominant. As long as Republicans are more interested in cultural security than border security, Republicans will not regain leadership on immigration reform.

Chris Ladd is a Texan living in the Chicago area. He has been involved in grassroots Republican politics for most of his life. He was a Republican precinct committeeman in suburban Chicago until he resigned from the party and his position after the 2016 Republican Convention. He can be reached at gopliferchicago at gmail dot com.

Tagged with: , , , ,
Posted in Economics, Immigration
364 comments on “Cowering behind a border wall
  1. ppennypacker says:

    Since ending the failed war on drugs is one of my signature issues — this is by far the best political blog I have ever read on border security. Reposted on https://www.facebook.com/paula.pennypacker

  2. dvmedina says:

    Reblogged this on Sweet Home Arizona and commented:
    #MustRead #ImmigrationAction

  3. Austen B says:

    Chris Ladd, why do you say “Because leaving isn’t exactly an option”? (byline to GOPLifer) Someone got a gun to your head? Your article was posted on FB by a former long-term Republican that recently crossed over from “the dark side” (my words). Seems to me that leaving is the ONLY sensible option these days, given what the GOP has become. I suppose you’re rationalizing staying on the dark side by foolishly believing that you can change the party from within. News flash: ain’t gonna happen!

  4. flypusher says:

    ‘ “When the president makes his announcement, Republicans really face two choices,” counseled Charles Conner of the National Council of Farmer Cooperatives. “They can be goaded into declaring this almost a holy war, or they can certainly not support the president, but temper their criticism of the president and go about their business of governing and solving this problem.”

    It’s a nice idea — good for businesses, politically savvy, good for the GOP’s demographic future — but totally unrealistic at this political moment. Republicans have, to borrow a phrase, poisoned the well on immigration reform.

    The GOP’s best plausible reaction to Obama’s orders is to continue to react as it has through most of the Obama presidency: Loudly denounce Obama, accuse him of “shredding the Constitution,” threaten lawsuits or actually file suit — and quietly move on to other issues. On immigration, what the GOP doesn’t do can’t hurt them. ‘

    http://theweek.com/article/index/272328/the-gops-best-response-to-obamas-immigration-move-toothless-griping

  5. […] Cowering behind a border wall by Chris Ladd on GOPLifer. […]

  6. kabuzz61 says:

    Obama is upset because the networks WILL NOT broadcast his ‘immigration’ speech tonight. They said it was obviously political. Now that is funny. Talk about losing your base.

  7. texan5142 says:

    Talk about a ass backward state, gays can’t wed but prisoners can.

    http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/texas-inmate-weddings-prison-27004866

  8. Chris, one intuits that were Belgians with hatchets and handguns regularly visiting death and mayhem upon worshipers at Dutch synagogues, picture ‘A’ might look considerably more like picture ‘B’.

    Border barriers do not define the relationship between those on either side. Rather, the nature of the border barrier is determined by the nature of the relationship.

    Somewhere between 3% and 10% of the people *living* inside our borders are here uninvited. This would seem to imply the B/NL border approach we’ve employed along our southern reaches for decades is perhaps not working in our best interests. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure this out. (Unless, of course, you are a Gruberian scholar, and primarily motivated by the lure of buying Democrat votes at the expense of actual citizens.)

    • CaptSternn says:

      “Border barriers do not define the relationship between those on either side. Rather, the nature of the border barrier is determined by the nature of the relationship.”

      Darnit, TThor. Way, way down below I tried to make that point and I wrote a lot of words in the attempt, and you sum it up in two short sentences.

    • Crogged says:

      True that, and if the Dutch were regularly moving into Belgian neighborhoods and proclaiming that God said such neighborhoods were now Dutch provinces there might be misunderstandings of Dutch intent.

    • Crogged says:

      Speaking of Gruber, I note that the “American Thinker” website below has an article which states that, ‘…..37 percent of Democrats, a plurality…….’, are in favor of ‘nationalization’ because most Republicans know that a plurality is greater than being opposed over two to one……..

    • flypusher says:

      “Border barriers do not define the relationship between those on either side. Rather, the nature of the border barrier is determined by the nature of the relationship.”

      Yes, but the wrong policies will make the nature of the relationship worse. There are some people who talk like they want that Egypy-Gaza border policy for our Southern border. I think that’s the wrong fit, and I’ve said why before.

      As for people being here “uninvited”, yes and no. Our words say “Keep Our!”, but our actions keep saying “Help Wantef”. We all know which one speaks louder. So bad, contradictory policy is making the problem worse.

      I doubt that the US-Mexico border would ever be so trouble free as the Belgium-Holland border. But there’s zero doubt that we could improve things very much with some reality-based policy changes.

      • “Our words say “Keep Out!”, but our actions keep saying ‘Help Wanted’.”

        Well, fly, this is the issue, isn’t it?

        Those among the citizenry at the higher end of the economic spectrum tend to benefit from illegal immigration through the lower cost goods and services made possible by the presence of illegals.

        Those citizens at the lower end of the economic scale are actively harmed by illegal immigration. Lower income citizens compete against illegals for jobs, and see the social services available to them diluted by demand for the same from illegals. The construction trades are now dominated by illegals, as is manual agricultural labor. These jobs are now largely inaccessible to American citizens. Similarly, the children of illegals tend to attend schools in districts with limited economic resources, while at the same time placing a much higher demand on expensive ESL services than is common in better off school districts. It’s not a pretty situation if you are an American citizen with a high school education trying to make a go of it.

        The mystery in all this is why lower- to middle-class American continue to vote for Democrats when the Democrats have thrown them under the demographics bus in search of a replacement electorate. Perhaps Gruber was right about the stupidity of the American voter. 😉

      • CaptSternn says:

        Ouch, TThor. And the left says we vote against our own interests if we vote for consdervatives.

      • flypusher says:

        Let’s keep it real Tracy, both parties get pulled in both directions on this issue. Yes, the Dems want to court the Latino vote, at the expense of their blue collar constituents who are harmed by the depressing effect of the underground economy on their wages. But the GOP has their business constituency, which loves that cheap labor, at odds with the secure-the-border crowd. So you get a perfect storm of getting nothing done on this issue.

      • fly, you are exactly right.

    • lomamonster says:

      “Gruberian scholar” I had a basic arrrgh upon perusing that mutually exclusive terminology. Thanks for a great laugh, TThor!

      • loma, one supposes it was only a matter of time until somebody on the left was outed on a comment every bit as offensive as Romney’s infamous 47% remark.

        It’s yet another reminder that the political demigods on both sides of the political fence in D.C. hold the plebiscite in low regard. My fear is that these ethereal idiots are going to be reminded the hard way that the sheep have teeth.

  9. Stephen says:

    I have just found your blog. It is nice to find another Republican that can be practical and has a brain. Living in Florida Hispanics are a large part and growing one of the population.This does not scare me at all. I am once of those older White dudes whose ancestors have been here for hundreds of years. My family has always had to adapt and prosper with immigration. Our governor was suppose to jail those who employed undocumented workers but relented when Agribusiness objected to that. This tendency of crony capitalism is one of the things I hate about my party. As you point out we need to make legal immigration easy and match it to our needs. And you are correct that when people demand a secured border they really mean no Hispanic immigration which is not going to happen. No one is being fooled.

    • texan5142 says:

      Welcome! On behalf of everyone here I say, welcome.

    • Bobo Amerigo says:

      Indeed. Welcome.

    • kabuzz61 says:

      Welcome. But your illegal immigration problem cannot come close to the border states. That is half the problem. Those that have ‘some’ think they got a handle on it.

      No one ever said immigration shouldn’t be easy. No one said a guest worker or permit isn’t a good idea. What conservatives say is first show us you (the government) can crack down on employers that hire illegals and demonstrate how you physically secure the border to reduce the large influx. That seems reasonable to me.

      Now if you lived through 1986′ immigration reform, amnesty was given and the dem’s promised securer borders by way of funding. Reagan did his part, the dem’s reneged.

      So excuse me for being skeptical this time around but I am. If Obama would lie to us about his healthcare reform which was comprehensive just think what he would do with this.

      But don’t worry, Obama is going to do this by executive order which would just about stop any immigration acts in their tracks.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Willkommen BUT…

        Ah I see the conservative conditional welcome wagon is out.

        Don’t mind the cranky constipated conservative cat.

        Welcome aboard Stephen.

      • lomamonster says:

        Only kabuzz would say, “Welcome, but…” So I will join in and say, “Welcome, amigo!”

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      Don’t mind kabuzz, Stephen; he’s always this dyspeptic and dysfunctional.

      And welcome!

    • CaptSternn says:

      Welcome aboard the crazy train. Just wait until we get back to the minimum income business.

      And no, nobody is suggesting that we not allow anybody to immigrate from south of the border. We have a lot of people immigrating from south of or border and doing it legally, and working to gain and then gaining citizenship.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        We act like we’ve never before had a visitor.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        A visitor that doesn’t rant that Obama is a Muslim radical Christian Socialist Commie dictator that stomps on the Constitution and casts the requisite clichéd aspersion that Chris is a RINO, Leftist, Socialist, Commie Democrat masquerading in Republican sheep’s clothes?

        No, we haven’t.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Bubbabobcat, where were you when the visiting poster named Manhattan has dropped by? He’s intelligent, rational, courteous, and complimentary of Chris amd his blog. You have no dossier with his name on it?

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Tutt, maybe I should have welcomed Manhattan but I presumed he/she was a semi regular as I have seen several posts from him/her.

        Stephen specifically said this was his first time posting here and he didn’t hurl invectives from the get go so we welcomed him. Not sure why you are up in arms over welcoming/extending courtesy to what appears to be a new rational contributor.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Not up in arms. Just making a wry observation.

      • lomamonster says:

        “Fool me once, s s shame on you” Arrrrrrrrrgh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • rightonrush says:

      Welcome Stephen, hope you become a regular.

    • Turtles Run says:

      Welcome!!!

      Rational voices are always welcome and we hope you stay.

  10. BigWilly says:

    At last, in the role of a lifetime, BigWilly as your favorite drunken Uncle.

    Aside from that I’ve yet to hear any mention of the governments and peoples to the south of us. Wouldn’t any solution to the immigration issue necessarily include them?

    • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

      Better Central and South American economies likely would do more for our immigration problem than just about anything else.

      Proposals for the US to do anything to help those economies, however, would result in much hollerin’

      If life for you and your family is better as an undocumented worker in the US than it is in your home country, who among us wouldn’t look out for our family’s interests, break the law, and come to the US?

      The better angels would suggest the real answer is to make life in their home countries better rather than to make their lives in the US worse.

      • CaptSternn says:

        And what did Venenzuela do, HT? Did it make life better or worse. After all, they went socialist. Now they can’t even get toilet paper.

        For all the ranting about Ayn Rand, all I ever hear about is “Atlas Shrugged”. Some mention “Fountainhead”. “Anthem” is mentioned every once in a while. But nobody ever mentions her most powerful book, “We the Living”.

        Without having read “We the Living”, a person cannot put her later works into perspective or understand those books, much less the philosophy behind them.

        “We the Living” exposes the world as the left would have it, and it ain’t pretty. Think of the USSR, Cuba and Venezuela. I suppose that is the rason the left never mentions it when talking about Rand.

        Now go and do some reasearch on what it would take for you to emigrate to some other country and compare what it takes to immigrate to the States. And also look up the penalties for being an illegal alien in those countries.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Yes stern…we on the left are all socialists and wannabe communists. That is our vision.

        Man, someday I hope you are going to be able to have a discussion with someone without going from zero to tripe within the first paragraph.

      • BigWilly says:

        I think the Scriptures mention “the want of bread.” Starvation is a great motivator. These people are around me every day. Can we keep the peace, at least?

      • CaptSternn says:

        Yeah, let me know when your side stops calling for a “single payer heath care system” and nationalizing the oil industry, HT.

      • Bobo Amerigo says:

        from zero to tripe

        I’ll be using that.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Homers tactic of dismissing your argument with a strayman.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Buzz…sweetie, you probably need to brush up on what you think a strayman argument is.

        Stern has often (in this blog posting alone) indicated that we on the left want socialism and communism. Me repeating that we are socialists and hope to be communists is repeating back words he already typed.

        If you want to suggest that Stern is putting forth some bizarro-strayman argument, then hey, you are not going to get an argument from me on that because I’m still trying to wrap my head around the argument that Denny’s being required to serve Black people is equivalent to subjugating a Black person to a lifetime of torture, beatings, and slavery.

      • texan5142 says:

        What is a strayman?

      • CaptSternn says:

        It’s called involuntary servitude, HT, and you know exactly what that is. You want the freedom to decide with whom you will do business, but you want to deny others that same freedom, demanding that they be forced by law to serve you against their will.

        I would bet that you want the freedom to decide whome you will allow into your private property, but you want to deny others that same freedom. You demand that the law force them to allow you into their private property.

        So why all the dishonety about such things? Are you that ashamed of the things you promote and support? And if you are so ashamed of those things, maybe you should really think about what it is that you support and promote.

      • CaptSternn says:

        And let us not forget, you want these things enforced through assumed and automatic guilt without charges, proof, judge, jury or trial.

      • flypusher says:

        “And what did Venenzuela do, HT? Did it make life better or worse. After all, they went socialist. Now they can’t even get toilet paper.”

        Are we having a problem with thousands of people fleeing Venezuela? Or is it with places like Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, etc. where their societies are still damaged from the right-wing tyrants US foreign policy inflicted on them?

      • flypusher says:

        “I would bet that you want the freedom to decide whome you will allow into your private property, but you want to deny others that same freedom. You demand that the law force them to allow you into their private property.”

        You really don’t pay attention to what people say here do you? Homer has been quite helpful to the rest of us with his explanations about anti- discrimination laws, how they work, and how businesses comply with them. It’s as if he has some sort of personal expertise and experience with them, imagine that! I’LL bet that if Homer opened his own business, he’d be perfectly fine with complying with those laws.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Willy, not everyone who comes from Latin America is starving or dirt poor or fleeing violence. Most come simply to “seek a better life.” I hate that cliche, but it’s accurate.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Laws that violate laws and rights, Fly.

      • flypusher says:

        Help, help, I’m being oppressed!!!

      • objv says:

        Fly, mass numbers of Venezuelans are not illegally immigrating to the US because they have farther to go. Not only do they have to get through Mexico and Central America, they also have to make it through Columbia alive.

        Many of the skilled workers and those who some money have been able to successfully emigrate to the US and other countries. Most of the Venezuelans here will be well educated and abhor what Chavez has done to the country.

      • flypusher says:

        Objv, when people are desperate enough, that extra distance isn’t going to put that much of a damper on an illegal immigration attempt. I never approved of Chavez and how he ran things, nor would I consider Venezuela place I’d want to live. But I see no validity in bringing it up as a rebuttal to Homer’s point because: 1) Conditions there are nowhere near as bad as some places in Central America, 2) We aren’t having problems with thousands of Venezuelans crossing our border 3) Some of the migration mess with Central Americans is OUR doing in that A) We had a well-intended law (to counter human trafficking) that had unintended consequences when actually applied and B) We had a rather disgraceful history of interfering with the governments of those countries for our short term political and economic gains. Everyone would be much better off if we plugged the loopholes in that law AND tried to repair some of that damage we inflicted on those societies.

      • objv says:

        Fly, since you’ve obviously never been to Venezuela, I’ll have to forgive you. If you call living with no electricity in a shack with a dirt floor and washing your clothes in a bucket of water, the high life, well, you must have a different perspective on poverty than I do. When I lived there, most people went hungry. Since Chavez imposed price controls and took over businesses, the situation has only gotten worse. Many food items are impossible to buy even if a person has money.

        As far as crime …

        “A perpetually edgy city full of guns, Caracas’ murder rate is more than 100 per 100,000 residents, according to OVA. The government does not publish an official figure.

        By comparison, the United States’ current rate is about 4.7 deaths per 100,000.

        A decades-old problem in Venezuela, armed robberies, kidnappings and murders climbed during the 1999-2013 rule of President Hugo Chavez, despite his anti-poverty programs.

        Even official figures show the murder rate doubling in that time.”

        http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/02/20/us-venezuela-crime-idUSBREA1J0KM20140220

        Many from Central America are able to pay coyotes thousands of dollars to get across Mexico. Venezuelas have to cross their own violent country as well as Columbia to get to Central America. If most are so poor they have no money to buy food, how do you think they can make that journey?

      • flypusher says:

        ““A perpetually edgy city full of guns, Caracas’ murder rate is more than 100 per 100,000 residents, according to OVA. The government does not publish an official figure.

        By comparison, the United States’ current rate is about 4.7 deaths per 100,000.”

        But if you go by the murder rate for whole countries, Honduras (at 90.4 per 100,000) is almost double that of the whole of Venezuela (53.7 per 100,000).

        As for poverty, if you are looking at % of the population in poverty, Honduras ranks 15th, with Guatemala at 18th, Nicaragua 36th, El Salvador 48th. You don’t see Venezuela until #60.

        http://www.photius.com/rankings/economy/population_below_poverty_line_2014_0.html

        I’m not saying that Venezuela is a great place to live, but rather that the numbers say that Central America (Honduras in particular) is considerably worse.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Objv – I am curious. When business interests helped launch a coup these people that are starving and suffering rose up to restore Chavez to power.

        Why?

        Maybe it was because no matter how bad the people of Venezuela have it they knew the alternative was worse. Kinda kills your narrative.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Good night fly

    • Crogged says:

      If we are using a novelist for political insight we can read Asimov and realize we will all be eating spice, which would seem to mean the cultures south of the border will be ascendant.

      Yes, there are some failed governments south of us, every once in a while our own policies impinge on theirs-it would drastically improve lives down there to modify our own drug policies.

      Where on earth is this ‘nationalize oil industry’ coming from?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Actually, “spice” is from *Dune*, by Frank Herbert. Asimov is the guy of *Foundation* trilogy fame.

        I agree with the rest of what you say. 🙂

      • Crogged says:

        Thanks for correction, after my teen years science fiction left my reading radar…………

      • Turtles Run says:

        Some place everyone of his ideas is coming from….out his a$$.

      • flypusher says:

        “Where on earth is this ‘nationalize oil industry’ coming from?”

        Don’t you know that anyone with the gall to disagree with anything Sternn says is by definition a Commie???????????

      • CaptSternn says:

        Forgot, only one link at a time allowed.

        http://www.salon.com/2010/05/28/nationalize/

      • flypusher says:

        Who here has advocated for that?

      • texan5142 says:

        You know Fly, in Sternn’s world, if one person says it the group as a whole are guilty.

      • texan5142 says:

        Owl, I liked the first move “Dune”, the second movie had more dialog and delved deeper in the book, but the lead actor in the second movie came off as a real punk.

      • Crogged says:

        Captain, really. C’mon. I can pore through, probably just skim, a National Review and find somebody with a policy position which would be extreme. Then I could claim ‘all’ conservatives and Republicans must be hand in hand with same policy springing from the idea-which means you, even though you are a party of none, a sometimes friend of Republicans.

        Yes, there is a certain subset of the conspiracy of liberals who would gladly nationalize not just the oil industry, but ALL industry. Why, because by extension the ‘voters’ would replace board of directors and shareholders and do all that is nice and good in the world. With the free energy there would be no more Miss America pageants or racism and and and and

        Dreamers with their bad ideas sometimes add an interesting, if frightening, perspective on the world.

      • BigWilly says:

        Mentat!

        Meant that.

      • texan5142 says:

        Yep! BigWilly! It is all self induced theater………lost my train of thought………now where was I………..I love you man. Now decode that.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Crogged, we get that on this blog all the time. One of the left here will find that somebody said something, post a link and then apply it to all conservatives or at least to all people in the tea party movement, and now y’all want to complain about it. Goose, meet gander.

    • kabuzz61 says:

      Fly, you entered the world of delusional.

      Homer, I typo’ed strawman but you conveniently and in a juvenile way taunted. You are a classy guy. But I expected that from someone who would make fun of my deceased sister.

      • flypusher says:

        Yes buzzy, because if anyone here has hands on experience with delusional, it is you.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Buzz…but it wasn’t a strawman argument either…For your sake, I was hoping a strayman was a real thing because what you were describing wasn’t a strawman either.

        Hard to make fun of someone’s deceased sibling if you don’t know the person even has a sibling, but hey, I didn’t figure I was high on your list of favorite people.

      • Crogged says:

        Strayman is an awesome super-hero name, but I’m not certain what powers to give him.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        We keep trying to find out what powers he has, but he keeps wandering away….

      • Crogged says:

        He also defends the bank robber from the teller.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        He collects dogs and trains them to stop crime.

      • CaptSternn says:

        “He also defends the bank robber from the teller.”

        So, he is a liberal super hero.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        LOL. Good one, Cap.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Is he kin to Billy Strayhorn?

      • CaptSternn says:

        I was thinking he had been bitten by a radioactive stray cat, and then he would have the powers of a stray cat. Maybe that is how the Stray Cats got their powers?

  11. Bobo Amerigo says:

    Hispanic immigrants may be a lot like the rest of us:

    “Hispanics have a nuanced, situational view of the morality of having an abortion. Hispanics are three times more likely to say that abortion is morally wrong than to believe it is morally acceptable (32% vs. 9%). However, nearly half (48%) say their moral evaluation of abortion depends on the situation, and nearly 1-in-10 (9%) say that having an abortion is not a moral issue.”

    “Hispanics appear willing to support allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry legally, even if they personally hold reservations about the morality of sex between two adults of the same gender. ”

    “Strong majorities of Hispanics believe that the U.S. economic system unfairly favors the wealthy (72%) and that hard work and determination do not guarantee success for most people today (60%).

    At the same time, a majority (56%)of Hispanics believe that children from all backgrounds have adequate opportunities to be successful in America today. Hispanics who are non-citizens (65%) and Hispanics who are naturalized citizens (63%), however, are significantly more likely than native-born Hispanics (51%) to believe that in the United States children from all income groups have adequate opportunities to be successful.”

    http://publicreligion.org/research/2013/09/hispanic-values-survey-2013/

  12. vivalagalgo says:

    Hey Chris, you and your blog were mentioned last night on “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell” on MSNBC. Congrats!

  13. Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

    No idea how to post a picture, but saw this, chuckled, and thought of our immigration topic here.

  14. texan5142 says:

    Frances and Friends sounds like a gay talk show how ironic that this is what they are talking about.

    http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/11/jimmy-swaggarts-son-lgbt-activists-would-behead-christians-if-they-could/

  15. Turtles Run says:

    Hey Chris

    In case someone did not mention it. Your Chronicle article is a feature on the Fark.com website. You really made the big time, I think

    http://www.fark.com/politics/

  16. objv says:

    Lifer wrote: I don’t give a damn what portion of that “south of the border” culture new immigrants bring.

    Chris this shouldn’t be about culture or ethnicity. The main problem with the way Obama wants to handle mass legalization is that the screening process doesn’t properly weed out the bad from the good. Protections should be put in place. Criminals should not be allowed to stay.

    Just as one rotten apple spoils the whole barrel, the illegal immigrants who break the law knowing that they can escape across the border only to return later have to be dealt with. This means tighter border security and other safeguards within the mainland.

    The border is not only a matter of illegal drugs. Other activity such as human trafficking is also a huge problem. Illegal immigrants who have committed crimes easily reenter the country. This has to stop.

    Personally, I like Hispanic culture. I thoroughly enjoyed living in Venezuela, but the criminals who preyed on others made security in that country a nightmare. Murder, armed robbery, sex crimes and kidnappings were all too common and happened to people I knew in that country.

    The vast majority of immigrants are hard working and would be good for this country. However, the criminal element should be deported and the border should be secured so that they are not able to return.

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      Should we similarly “secure” the border between, say, Virginia and Washington, DC, or between Texas and Louisiana? Plenty of criminals cross those boundaries all the time, too.

      Or maybe we could concentrate on what to do with violent criminals when we catch them, rather than unreasonably disrupting the mass of the innocent in order to catch a few wrongdoers.

      • CaptSternn says:

        They are not innocent if they come here legally. That shows that they do not respect our nation nor our laws.

      • Crogged says:

        Why did the chicken cross the road–disrespect………..

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Crogged, because he could, and because so many others do it. It’s such a common practice, the fact that it’s illegal doesn’t really register with the perpetrators.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        comic-boy malapropically fumes, “They are not innocent if they come here legally.”

        Yeah, a lot of other Tea Party assholes believe that too.

      • Crogged says:

        The same way I disrespect traffic laws when self interest is involved. Imagine that, ‘immigrants’ are people with aspirations and If we really didn’t want them to feel invited, we could beggar ourselves.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Whatever happened to decriminalization and jury nullification, in which it’s decided that some laws should not be enforced?

      • Crogged says:

        Ok. Convince those who believe ‘criminals’ are immigrant parents with children born here and the fabric of the universe revolves around respect for laws which I don’t have to worry about.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Crogged, if you have to educated on what is legal and illegal, then go somewhere else.

        We either have laws that we obey or we do not. If we do and you don’t obey them, you face the consequences, it we don’t have laws, who cares.

        Our murder laws don’t say ‘if someone really got you mad but you are generally a nice guy we won’t prosecute.’

        Or theft laws. Larceny. Rape, etc. We either follow the laws or we don’t. If you don’t like a law, we have processes in place for that.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Well, I just received a bouquet of flowers from a certain Tea Party member, so I take back the part about jury nullification. 🙂

      • Crogged says:

        Just think how nice a place we would have if we criminalize all bad behavior. All the money we would have, well, for this year at least, from the fines we collected from all the bad people and the security we would feel from knowing we weren’t bad, for this year at least.

        Our immigration laws have been left behind and ignored by the real world. We could choose to make the world unreal, or just keep prattling these same goddamn arguments about a subject neither you or I have much of a real life contact with or we could simply change a stupid fucking immigration law with a few goddamn words. Some disrespectfull people won’t go to goddamn jail, bad for you I suppose.

        Ooops, even I can lose patience.

      • objv says:

        Hello, Owl! Good to see you again.

        I find it amusing that you care greatly about misplaced apostrophes – but with illegal border crossings – not so much.

        Look, if Mexico and other Latin American countries would cooperate with US police departments to find those who had committed crimes and return them to the US for trial, I would not object. It would then be like your hypothetical crossing from Texas into Louisiana. However, you know that once a criminal crosses the border back into Mexico, he is usually safe and can return under an alias when he feels the time is right.

        Criminal, gang and cartel activity will continue to move north over the border even after immigration reform is passed unless we control our border and have some way to check identity within our interior.

        I do not want to “disrupt” the lives of the innocent, but it is more likely that the criminal illegal aliens will victimize fellow Hispanics than other ethnic groups. What is more disruptive – being a victim of a crime or having to show an ID?

      • objv says:

        Tutt, he’s a keeper! 🙂

      • CaptSternn says:

        I sure hope so, OV. Tutt is a wonderful and beautiful lady.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Crogged, no one mentioned ‘bad’ people but you. I am not a bad person as I am sure you aren’t but I have received speeding tickets. I was even picked up in Oregon for hitch hiking in the early 70’s. But the speeding fine I had to pay and lucky I was in the Navy at the time so the Navy got me out of the Oregon situation.

        You still haven’t answered. Do we obey laws or not?

        And since Obama’s ACA law was comprehensive but we now find it was based on willful lies, how do you think the American public will view another government ‘comprehensive’ law? Not friendly.

    • Crogged says:

      “The main problem with the way Obama wants to handle mass legalization is that the screening process doesn’t properly weed out the bad from the good.”

      No-the vague crap I have read on web pages makes it seems the “plan” is immigrants who have not violated any laws except those of immigration and who have children born as citizens, may, MAY not be summarily deported. If you make legal immigration attainable then it’s easier to catch the illegal immigration and people act in their own best interest be they sinner or saint.

    • goplifer says:

      Objv raises what I think is a legitimate concern. I just don’t think it’s nearly as high an imperative, or as severe a problem, as it’s generally portrayed. If the processes for screening immigrants need refining, then work on that, but it shouldn’t hold up the whole process of changing the framework.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        And there’s what I object to: the screeches and wails that “THIS absolutely must be addressed and *completely* fixed FIRST!” rather than the idea that such concerns can be addressed ALONGSIDE meaningful reform of our immigration laws and procedures, both for newcomers and those already in the country.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Owl’s point is valid.

        When you hear, “We must secure the border first, and then we’ll talk about immigration reform”, that person has no interest in doing anything because the border is never going to be “secure” enough.

        Similarly, when you hear, “We need to end waste, fraud, and abuse in welfare before talking about new programs”, you can rest assured that this person has no interest in doing anything with new programs.

      • CaptSternn says:

        No, HT, it means, “fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.”

        You see, your side has no desire to negotiate nor comrpomise, even calling for amnesty, citizenship for illegals and completely open borders. My side wants to secure the southern border as much as possible, though nothing is ever 100%, and crack down on illegal aliens as well as people that hire and/or aid them, especially those involved in other criminal behavior.

        Now, if you give that much, we can discuss offering indefinate work visas for those that are here illegally and have committed no serious crimes, but never a path to citizenship unless they return to their home country and go through the same process as those that immigrate legally. We could even agree to allowing more to come here to work, and even to work and move towards citizenship.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Exactly correct mein Capitan. Fining heavily companies that hire illegals (make it hurt) is part and parcel of securing the border. When ICE demonstrates quite a few big companies that were fined heavily for hiring illegals, I will start to believe our government is serious.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Honestly, sometimes I think I could read this blog just for kabuzz’s illiterate malapropisms.

        Besides the joys of his earlier “strayman” (currently playing in my head to the Hayes/Porter tune), now we get the kitling attempting the gallant French “mon capitán” but instead sounding like a sniveling Nazi by ending up with the German “mein”.

        Honestly, kabuzz, you’re an abject failure at political commentary, but your comic routine as a bumbling fool is pure gold.

      • objv says:

        Homer, when you check out preschools for your sons, do you expect them to do thorough background checks on their workers? If they say they don’t do checks and the reason is that the checks would take way too much time and unfairly target some innocent people, would you even consider sending your twins there?

        Yet here you are suggesting that mass legalization of untold numbers of people would work out just fine. As I’ve said, the vast majority of illegal immigrants are good, but the criminals among them would bring horrific misery to our communities.

        The Obama administration’s track record on screening has been abysmal. They’ve released criminals – some with histories of sexual abuse, murder, and repeated convictions of drunk driving back into our communities.

        I’m not suggesting that the border has to be completely secure or that the screening process should be perfect, but some framework has to be in place to be able to catch the criminals and the gang and cartel members who destroy lives.

      • texan5142 says:

        objv says:
        November 19, 2014 at 8:59 am
        Homer, when you check out preschools for your sons, do you expect them to do thorough background checks on their workers? If they say they don’t do checks and the reason is that the checks would take way too much time and unfairly target some innocent people, would you even consider sending your twins there?

        By that logic as someone else already pointed out, we should be doing background checks at every state line in the US. You don’t want and criminal Americans crossing state lines dontcha know.

      • objv says:

        Texan, police departments cooperate with each other to catch criminals that cross state lines. Usually, a criminal that crosses the border into Mexico home free.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        OV then you missed the guy in Houston who just killed his brother and nephew and raped his sister in law and ran to Mexico and was captured there within days by the Mexican authorities and turned over to US/Houston law enforcement.

  17. Doug says:

    “We can’t get started on any of them because we are less concerned about legal immigration than we are about protecting our culture from change.”

    At least you finally admit it’s about culture instead of “brown skin.” Please explain what part of any culture south of the border you would prefer to our own.

    • Turtles Run says:

      “Please explain what part of any culture south of the border you would prefer to our own”

      Speaking for myself.

      Personally, I think the influences would be positive. Millions of hard working people with strong family values that are not afraid to take risks to make a better life for themselves given a path to become American citizens. These people from south of the border are the very types that built this nation.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Yes, they tend to lead conservative lifestyles and hold conservative views, which is why more and more are voting for republicans. A big driving force behind tha is the PPACA. They don’t like others getting all up in their personal business.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Please Cappy

        Hispanics are conservative by nature but don’t confuse that with the type of far right wing tripe you tea party ammosexuals try to pass off as “conservative.”

      • CaptSternn says:

        Ted Cruz says otherwise, Turtles. I am sure not all are. But while the majority are still voting for democrats, a very high percentage are starting to vote for republicans, and that makes primaries all the more important.

      • Doug says:

        “Hispanics are conservative by nature…”

        Apparently you weren’t listening to Mexican news a few years back when the government decided to scale back the tortilla subsidy.

        If you want a good look at what happens when the Mexicans bring their culture with them, move to the Rio Grande Valley for a few years. It is not conservative. Of course you can make a good living selling burglar bars.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Hispanics tend to be socially conservative.

    • goplifer says:

      No, immigration law is not and should not be about cultural protection. Opposition to immigration generally is. I don’t give a damn what portion of that “south of the border” culture new immigrants bring. Pluralism tends to work out well in the end, and you get fantastic food and music out of the deal.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Strong work ethic. Family values. Respect for the elderly. Importance of religion. Every culture brings with it both positive and negative aspects. Together we can all thrive if we focus on the positive.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        And if the next question is why come here if those other cultures are so great …

      • tuttabellamia says:

        People want the best of all worlds, and who can blame them? Many Americans move to Mexico when they retire because they seek a relaxing, low-cost environment. It doesn’t mean they reject the US, only that some locations are preferable depending on the circumstances of one’s life at that time.

      • goplifer says:

        And that’s not all. I have a strong bias in favor of immigrants. Regardless what culture they are coming from and what values that culture brings, immigrants tend to be the most ambitious, hard-driving, dedicated people from that culture. What it takes to become an immigrant is in most respects what we think of as the best of what it means to be an American.

        Bring more immigrants. Please. Now.

      • Crogged says:

        I am DONE and PAST those days, but I still have the first emails and messages Girlfriend for Life and I shared, like an old high school yearbook with messages from friends. If it all seems impossible or gloomy, I read them or send one back to her as if we were starting all over again.

      • Crogged says:

        Wow, this is an uncomfortable juxtaposition of crossed messages, excuse me……….

      • flypusher says:

        “What it takes to become an immigrant is in most respects what we think of as the best of what it means to be an American.”

        Yep. They are actually out doing, rather than whining about not enough mentions of American exceptionalism.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Chris, I totally agree. I love immigrants. My grandparents came from Czech/Slovokia. They did come legally.

        I do not respect illegal anyone. It seems to me to be a character flaw. How can anyone look at their children and tell them they are living an illegal life and mommy and daddy blesses it?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Kabuzz, there’s a disconnect, because on the one hand illegals are told they’re, well, illegal, but on the other hand they’re allowed to live here, employed, kids allowed to enroll in school and even pay the in-state tuition rate for college, to do all the things a LEGAL resident does, so it should come as no surprise that they don’t consider themselves truly illegal. “Illegal” becomes a word without meaning.

        To allow people to go through all the motions of being legal, for years and years, and then suddenly remember they are illegal and should be deported is rather cruel and inconsistent, like pulling the rug out from under them. Why are they allowed to get so far in the first place?

        Up to now, for the past 25 years or so, politicians have not had the courage to decide one way or another — legalize them en masse or deport them en masse. In the meantime, illegals keep coming here, plugging along, nothing will change, and eventually they will die of old age here, in their original illegal state.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Kabuzz, I don’t know that I’d call it a character flaw to be ok with being illegal, if the message being sent by the host country is that it’s ok to be here illegally, and anyway, you’re just here to work and provide for your family, etc.

        I do agree that character does play a role. I had a couple of cousins here illegally who eventually received amnesty in ’86, and they were sort of nervous about being illegal, but not too much. I had another cousin who could not live with himself over being illegal, he literally broke out in hives over the stress, and he eventually returned to Mexico so he could live in peace with his conscience.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        The moral of the story is that the nervy ones are now American citizens, and their kids are college graduates. This sets an example for other hopeful illegals, that amnesty might be just around the corner.

        The cousin with the conscience is also doing well, in Mexico. He owns a small ranch, he’s his own boss, and he enjoys living at a slower, more laid back pace.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Sad but true observation, Tutt.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        So, the question is, which of the cousins has the character flaw?

      • bubbabobcat says:

        I don’t see what is so sad of either of those situations.

        Don’t like the “nervy illegals” Cappy?

        Then I guess you don’t much like the original nervy illegal immigrants; whoops I meant the right wing PC descriptor “colonists”, (or were they “freedom fighters”?) George Washington, Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, etc.

      • CaptSternn says:

        I know it is hard for you to keep up, Bubba, but I was referring to the facts that many illegal aliens are left in limbo because neither party is really willing to step up and deal with the issue one way or the other, or some other way.

        Democrats had a super majority and the oval office and could pass whatever they wanted even if not one single republican voted with them. Republicans couldn’t even filibuster. Republicans haven’t had that kind of power or ability.

        About the only time republicans had that kind of power was right after the War between the States. They brought about the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments during that time.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        But as Obama steps up to break the inertial deadlock and meaningfully provide a solution, you will whiplash from your “demand for action” and Pavlovlianly decry him for violating the Constitution, acting like an emperor, disregarding the “rule of law”, etc., etc., etc., ad nauseum.

        Nice try Cappy.

    • Crogged says:

      What is ‘our own’ culture? Allergies to soccer and spices?

    • flypusher says:

      History rhymes again. Once upon a time it was ” no Irish need apply”. Then it was the anti-Chinese laws. Now let’s turn up our noses at Hispanic culture!

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        And Arabs or other Middle Easterners. And Sikhs. And, heck, most South Asians.

        The Irish and Italians were lucky enough to become “White”, even though they didn’t start that way. But the prejudice against “non-Whites” remains.

      • flypusher says:

        Owl, the whole “becoming white” thing has some personal interest to me. Some of the roots of my family tree are of the original Anglo-Saxon colonists. But most of them derive from the waves of Central & Eastern Europeans who came over post Civil War. No one would even blink at my ethnic mix these days, but once upon a time some of my ancestors’ marriage choices would have met with some disapproval.

  18. Bobo Amerigo says:

    Chris, are both blue and red strategists calling you this morning?

    Because inquiring minds would like to know.

    I’m happy for you.

  19. lomamonster says:

    Kudos, Chris! You made it to the Lawrence Show tonight!

  20. BigWilly says:

    Did I miss the quip about the Mexican Government?

  21. texan5142 says:

    Brrrrrrrrrrrrr!

    • CaptSternn says:

      Well, now you have actually said something we can agree on.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Michael Berry??? Isn’t this the same guy after leaving a gay bar hit a car and then drove off without telling anyone. And didn’t he say he hopes the Ground Zero Community Center is blown up if built.

        What a classy guy, no wonder you like him Cappy.

      • flypusher says:

        The hit and run thing is small potatoes in my book TR, but I actually heard him on the air saying that “they ought to bomb it if it gets built” line. That’s getting very close to terrorism territory there, and I never listened to him again after that.

      • Doug says:

        ” Isn’t this the same guy after leaving a gay bar hit a car and then drove off without telling anyone.”

        No, he is not. Houston police compared paint samples and proved that it was not his car. But of course that doesn’t make the news.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        If Michael Berry did what you said, he is eligible to become a senator is one was to use the dem play book.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Buzzy wrote: “If Michael Berry did what you said, he is eligible to become a senator is one was to use the dem play book.”

        Hoping that a community center is blown up makes someone eligible to be a Senator?

        Doug – No the police did not file charges on him but Berry did write a $2,000 check to the person who owned the car at the gay club that he hit. You forgot to mention that part.

      • Doug says:

        I didn’t “forget.” Yes, he wrote a check. So? Does that mean he’s guilty? Sometimes I donate to the food bank. Does that mean I’m guilty of starving people?

      • texan5142 says:

        That is some fine articulate comparison Doug. Who knew that covering your ass for a car you say you did not hit, but will pay for the damages anyway because we all should pay strangers for damages to their property that we say we did not do, is the same as donating money to a food back. Who knew.

      • Crogged says:

        Just think how convoluted Mr. Berry’s moral dilemma would be if Texas Republican’s weren’t so accepting of gay Americans.

    • CaptSternn says:

      37 degrees in Houston. No idea about the rest. But then again, you stick with Gruber. Have a nice day.

  22. Anse says:

    It really is a fear of change that terrifies the Tea Party. They are obsessed with rolling back American progress to the era of the Founders, and the influx of immigrants is a part of that hysteria. We will never again be the country we used to be, no matter how hard you fight it.

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      We *never were* “the country we used to be.” Any Golden Age, in reality, had lots of tarnish.

      The Tea Party isn’t obsessed with the past; it’s obsessed with a *fantasy* of the past.

      • rightonrush says:

        “The Tea Party isn’t obsessed with the past; it’s obsessed with a *fantasy* of the past”

        You nailed it Owl.

      • Anse says:

        That’s absolutely right, of course. It’s one of the most egregious habits of every generation, this assumption that everything would be better if we went back to the Good Old Days. We have a very shaky memory about those days.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Anse, so you’re saying it’s not just the Tea Party that’s afraid of change?

      • CaptSternn says:

        Y’all are funny and yet very sad at the same time. It has nothing to do with returning to the past, or even an idea of the past, though it does have a lot to do with returning to the ideas of individual liberty and rights, to support equal rights for all and not be violating the civil rights of some. It has nothing to do with resisting change because we are trying to change things for the better. The left is trying to change things for the worse and they have done a lot of damage.

        The left sees progress in the destruction of freedom, at least the freedom of others.

        Their progress has caused this nation to have the largest prison syste in the world, so much for land of the free.
        Their progress sees a little boy expelled from school because he ate a poptart in a non-approved manner.
        Their progress disarms law abiding citizens and sets up scenes for mass killings by one or two people bent on racking up as much death as they can befiore usually taking their own lives.
        Their progress is treating a kid with an aspirin in school the same as some major drug dealer/abuser.
        Their progress has led to the deaths of tens of millions of people for nothing more than mere convenience.
        Their progress means people are not allowed to sell their own property outside the U.S..
        Their progress has led to things like drug Cartels in other countries.
        Their progress leads to people losing jobs or having hours and benefits cut.
        Their progress has led to wars, death and destruction.

        The list goes on and on and on, and almost all of their “progress” has been negative. Even when they claim it is positive, it means fewer rights and less freedom for others. And they want more of it, to destroy the private health insurance and care systems and turn it all over to the government. Many have called for following Venezuela’s lead and nationalizing the oil industry. The left want’s socialism or even communism because they think they can make it work, it’s just that every other time it was tried and failed it was because somebody else did it. “We are the ones we have been waiting for” as Obama put it.

        Their “change” is not change for the better, it is change for less freedom, less private sector and more control over others. The leftist politicians and their advisors look down at the people and say the people are too stupid to understand anythuing, too stupid to be allowed to make theirn own choices, too stupid to live their lives as they see fit, then their supporters jump up and shout, “Yes, we are too stupid for those things.” They trust politicians more than they trust themselves.

        This is nothing new, which is why the only surprise from Gruber is that he allowed the true opinions of the powers that be get recorded and made public. If I called some of you here stupid, you would get mighty offended, but these same people still defend people like Gruber, Obama, Pelosi, Reid and others that do call you stupid. You don’t just defend them, you praise them. You support them. You vote for them. You want to turn your lives over to them.

        Or maybe that last part isn’t true? Maybe it is that the left is what it has always been, more rights for them, less or no rights for others. To keep “those people” in their place.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Tutt, I think you need to change Sternn’s nappies; he’s full of shit again.

      • flypusher says:

        ” If I called some of you here stupid, you would get mighty offended, ..”

        You do that almost every time you post, Sternn. Every time you twist someone’s words into something they did not say, every time you repeat debunked crap, every time you dodge questions, every time you spew ridiculous conspiracy theories and expect them to carry as much weight as actual science, every time you ignore the math, every time you shovel a mound of BS like the above rant, every time you cherry pick, you insult everyone’s intelligence. Compared to you, what politicians say isn’t all that shocking.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Fly, your so called ‘debunked’ doesn’t make it real if it is ‘debunked’ by the echo chamber. It can only be truly debunked with facts. It is sad I even have to say it.

      • flypusher says:

        Buzzy, how many times has someone like Homer done the math to back up his point? How many times have JG and I cited scientific findings/ our own experiences against the ignorance people like you repeat? How many times has just about everyone used actual history to shoot down one of your myopic good old days assertions? Many times. We use plenty of facts and examples and sources, but all you usually do is go to unthinking reflex with your echo chamber comments.

        Given that all of this is in writing, you are Sternn are perplexingly brazen with all your false assertions about us. Of course in light of a trolling/performance art explanation it would make sense.

      • texan5142 says:

        Funny how the two people here who claim to be either tea party or independent on any given day, always blame all the problems on just one political leaning. Kabuzz says he is an independent and that both parties are to blame, yet every other word in his rants is always “liberals fault”, same with Cappy. You two guys are the most dishonest posters on here.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Maybe, just maybe Texan it is because the liberals at this time are in charge. Did you not know that? No papers in Minn.?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        kabuzz, the “liberals” aren’t in charge in Texas, and haven’t been in a long time.

        I’ve heard you whining and wanking about government in Houston (and our liberal, lesbian mayor); I’ve heard you venting and fainting over government in Washington (particularly the Democrats therein). But you seem consistently and conspicuously silent about Texas state governance.

        Again, hypocrisy is a Tea Party value.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Just so that I am sure I have this correct. This is how it works in your head?

        I am in favor of not allowing restaurants, open to the public, the ability to deny service to Black people.

        Therefore, I am pro-slavery and/or pro-indentured servitude.

        Buddy, I don’t go down this route often, and I’ll try to make this as impersonal as possible, but that is about as idiotic a mindset as someone can have.

        It is to the point that I don’t know if it is hyperbole for the sake of trying to win an argument or just a sincerely stupid, stupid thought.

    • Anse says:

      If you want to say that we liberals are worried about losing the good work we’ve achieved over the last century, then I guess you could put us in that category, too. But I don’t think that’s quite what we’re talking about here.

      We’re a better country in so many ways, today, than we were in 1790. And anybody who thinks the Progressive Era and the Civil Rights era did not play key roles in that evolution is just foolish.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Hang on to that dream Anse. How egotistical does on have to be to state what you stated? Pretty delusional to say the least. Absolutely lacking any resemblence of reality. And on top of that your entire premise is incorrect. Wow! Gruber was right about the democratic voter.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        No, what I’m saying is that I agree with your point about fear of change being a generational habit, which is a general, universal truth. It’s something that comes with age, and it has nothing to do with being a Tea Partier or a liberal.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Even immigrants themselves become afraid of change, once they reach a certain age.

      • Anse says:

        I don’t agree, Tutt. Being a conservative is, by definition, about working to put the breaks on change; hopefully conservatives can represent a common sense perspective while liberals represent a more idealistic one. The two work in tandem to make a civilization.

        I think Democrats have shown an abundance of open-mindedness when it comes to making policy. We’ve gone too far in some ways, i think; there is no true Left in America anymore, at least not in the sense that left wing ideologues have control of the Democratic Party. It’s a party of pragmatists. The most significant piece of Democratic legislation in at least the last 30 years began as a conservative idea, promoted and first established by a Republican governor. The current situation over health care is a reflection of both parties’ evolution.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        The Tea Party can be rather idealistic.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I have found that there are different types of Tea Partiers. Some are the much-mentioned older white people afraid of certain immigrants, taking advantage of the faction to further their own ends. Others, like my very own Captain Sternn, is the young (sort of), idealistic type who thinks across-the-board freedom is somehow possible, that everything will just fall into place if we just let it.

      • Anse says:

        But it’s an idealism based on an obsession with this very false perspective, in my opinion, this idea that America went off the rails some time during the Progressive Era. I think people have become overly prone of making worship of the Founders a kind of prerequisite for patriotism.

        I’m 41 years old. I’m watching my older relatives devolve into this extremely pessimistic, almost nihilistic view of the world. Some Boomers seem to have given up. It’s as if they’re just waiting around for Jesus to come back. Some of them will actually tell you that they believe we’re in the End of Days. I have made it a personal pledge to resist this assumption that everything sucks. It’s not only cynical, it’s very wrong.

      • Anse says:

        Sternn’s concept of freedom would be perfectly suited to sharecropping.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Cap’s concept of freedom is idealistic and well-meaning but risks becoming a scenario of survival of the fittest.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Cap’s concept of freedom is actually based on a modern perspective. It’s easy to allow businesses the “freedom to discriminate” in today’s day and age, knowing they would find themselves boycotted and out of business.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        A small motel in a largely White town in the rural South would likely NOT find itself boycotted out of business for refusing service to Blacks. And plenty of such towns exist.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Have you got any actual facts, kabuzz?

        But of course not. That would be contrary to your nature.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Anse, conservatives approach all policies with caution and would prefer incrimentalism.

        No one denies Medicare/Medicaid, Food Stamps, etc. are good programs but liberals refuse to admit they are rift with fraud and abuse. Liberals do not want to change those programs even though they were created 60 years ago and need changing.

        Conservatives believe the whole system needs to be reviewed. So we are for change. It seems the liberals refuse to want to change anything.

        SS is the one that comes to mind. Liberals don’t want to fix our immigration system, all you present is amnesty. That isn’t a fix. That’s a political tool.

      • Crogged says:

        The author has proposed methods of dealing with ‘fraud abuse’, economic distortions and unintended consequences of rapid changes in economies.

        A simpler taxing mechanism. A minimum income. A minimum health insurance system. Nothing more or less.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Tutt…there are way, way too many cities, businesses, and housing associations/apartment complexes that would not be damaged (and some would view it as a benefit) from openly discriminating.

        There are too many small towns (sadly probably over-represented in the South) that would feel no pain from active discrimination against minorities.

        Although I’ve not asked him this specific question, many with Stern’s political mindset are strongly against companies being required to collect and report demographic data of job applicants. In fact, many have suggested that it be made illegal for companies to even collect those data because, “race shouldn’t matter”.

        In which case, countless companies could (and sadly would) dramatically discriminate against women, minorities, the disabled, and older folks without anyone really noticing it.

        Stern’s vision of the country and of “freedom” would be pretty sweet for some folks and very bad for others. We’ve seen this movie before, and the plot sucks.

      • texan5142 says:

        kabuzz61 says:
        November 17, 2014 at 12:11 pm
        .

        “No one denies Medicare/Medicaid, Food Stamps, etc. are good programs but liberals refuse to admit they are rift with fraud and abuse.”

        No one denies that there is fraud and abuse in the system. Please provide citations of a professed “liberal” who refuses to admit that there is fraud and abuse. There is fraud and abuse in every government program and I would be willing to bet that the fraud and/or abuse in the “Medicare/Medicaid, Food Stamps, etc” pales in comparison to the fraud and abuse by the military industrial complex.

        So lets change your statement a little,

        No one denies having a strong military is a good program but republicans refuse to admit they are rift with fraud and abuse.

        You see cat, you are partisan blind, meaning that you only find fault with one party.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Tutt wrote: It’s easy to allow businesses the “freedom to discriminate” in today’s day and age, knowing they would find themselves boycotted and out of business.

        I recall those on the right rushing to go support Chick fil a to support their belief in discriminating against homosexuals. I have no doubt that the far right would just as enthusiastically support those that would seek to discriminate against others they find objectionable. Cappy may believe discrimination equals freedom but our nation’s history clearly demonstrates that that sort of “freedom” is anything but.

      • flypusher says:

        “We’ve seen this movie before, and the plot sucks.”

        Certain ideas have been tried, found wanting, and belong in the dustbin of history and as cautionary tales. People who advocate for trying it again, in spite of the record of failure, need to be shouted down for the delusional ignoramuses they are.

        (Applies equally to LWNJs who would want to give Communism another go, as well as the RWNJs who think unfettered liberty to publicaly discriminate would do no harm.)

      • kabuzz61 says:

        This is for Texan who has a reading comprehension problem. This is from my above comment:

        Conservatives believe the whole system needs to be reviewed. So we are for change.

      • Turtles Run says:

        “So we are for change.”

        Buzzy – The issue is that you guys do not believe in a change for the better. Why is the plan to ‘save’ safety nets always to make it harder to get? Why not make it harder to need?

      • texan5142 says:

        No, I think you need to write better because nowhere in your rant did you refer to anything else but social service programs when you wrote,

        “No one denies Medicare/Medicaid, Food Stamps, etc. are good programs but liberals refuse to admit they are rift with fraud and abuse. Liberals do not want to change those programs even though they were created 60 years ago and need changing.

        Conservatives believe the whole system needs to be reviewed.”

        The way you wrote the above sentence would seem you are responding to your previous paragraph above it. How am I or anyone else supposed to know when you say “Conservatives believe the whole system needs to be reviewed.” that you are talking about the complete system of government as a whole and not just social services as described by you.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Turtles, fixing something that is broken is a change for the better. Leaving broken is bad.

      • CaptSternn says:

        *sigh*

        So many words, so little understanding.

        We all discrimnate. We all do it every day for this reason or that reason. Even Obama has told people they have to sit in the back if they want a ride, and the left cheers him for it. Let a conservative say such a thing and that person would be called a racist or worse. It all comes back to the same old thing, the left, the democrats, want “those people” to know their place. They want their rights, but to hell with the rights of “those people”.

      • Turtles Run says:

        To quote Flypusher

        Sternn nobody fell for your intellectually dishonest BS the first 100 times, so why do you think the 101st time will be different?

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Turtles…you just don’t understand.

        You choosing to buy your gas at Shell because the station is closer to your house is exactly the same thing as ExxonMobil deciding not to hire Black people.

        Why do you hate freedom so much?

      • CaptSternn says:

        “You choosing to buy your gas at Shell because the station is closer to your house is exactly the same thing as ExxonMobil deciding not to hire Black people.”

        Discrimination is discrimination. That is all.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        See Turtles, like I was saying, ExxonMobil not hiring Black people and IHOP not serving Hispanic people is exactly the same as you buying groceries at HEB rather than Kroger.

        No difference in that at all.

        Only by allowing apartment complexes to refuse to rent to Black people and by allowing banks to refuse to make loans to single women, will Blacks and women learn what it is like to truly be free.

        The Black person who can’t get a apartment is free to build his or her own apartment complex and rent only to Black people.

        The single woman can simply open her own bank and be free to give loans only to the people she likes.

        If Hispanic people really want waffles and pancakes, they can simply move to a city where there is a Denny’s that will serve them.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        There is an old barometer I use that is like this. The louder and meaner liberals get, the closer the truth has been revealed. Captain, you did it.

        Homer, I am proud that you managed to not mention homsexuality or other peoples sister so far.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Funny you mention IHOP, HT. Last time we went to one we didn’t get served. Finally just up and walked out. Don’t care to ever go back to any of their locations.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Buzz, you have an interesting definition of loud and mean.

        But hey, if agreeing with and re-stating your position can be perceived as mean, imaging how the poor suckers who don’t agree with you feel.

        Stern…it is a good thing you live in a city with lots of IHOPs and other restaurant choices. It would be probably be a tad more inconvenient if you lived in a small town with only one grocery store whose owner decided not to sell you groceries because you are in an inter-racial relationship.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Yes, HT, you have made it clear that you oppose things like the 13th amendment and favor involuntary servitude.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Clear as shit, Sternn, which is what you’re full of.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Stern…just ’cause I’m in a playful mood, I’ll indulge a bit here.

        Just how have I made it clear that I’m against ending slavery and involuntary servitude?

        I thought I had done a good job of hiding that from others.

      • flypusher says:

        Careful what you ask for Homer, you could end up like Norman the head andoid ( on an original series Star Trek episode) who got all his logic circuits fried by sheer nonsense.

        (Who’s nerdy enough to name that episode?)

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        I’ll take “I, Mudd” for 5,000 quatloos, Trelayne.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Didn’t date much as a teenager huh?

      • CaptSternn says:

        HT, if you do not support the right of a person to refuse service to anybody for any reason, or no reason at all, you are supporting the power to force them to serve people they do not voluntarialy serve, involuntary servitude.

        “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”

        You are also opposing property rights, the right to refuse access to private property. But of course you demand those rights for yourself while denying others those same rights.

        It’s all about unequal rights for you, to keep “those people” in their place.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Just so that I am sure I have this correct. This is how it works in your head?

        I am in favor of not allowing restaurants, open to the public, the ability to deny service to Black people.

        Therefore, I am pro-slavery and/or pro-indentured servitude.

        Buddy, I don’t go down this route often, and I’ll try to make this as impersonal as possible, but that is about as idiotic a mindset as someone can have.

        It is to the point that I don’t know if it is hyperbole for the sake of trying to win an argument or just a sincerely stupid, stupid thought.

      • flypusher says:

        Glad to see your logic circuits are undamaged Homer!

      • flypusher says:

        “HT, if you do not support the right of a person to refuse service to anybody for any reason, or no reason at all, you are supporting the power to force them to serve people they do not voluntarialy serve, involuntary servitude.”

        This is so stupid on so many levels, but starting with the low hanging fruit:

        Real involuntary servitude/ slavery means that you’re not getting paid for that work. Not the case with your lame example. Nor is this poor oppressed business owner being subjected to all the degradation that went with being a slave. He’s not going to get whipped if the customer doesn’t like his service, nor will he be sold away from his family.

        If you are so adamant about not having black people in your restaurant, you do have an out. You can make it into a private club and earn your $ off the paid memberships.

    • lomamonster says:

      Lack of effective political power is what really terrifies the Tea Party – not the fear of change. They would change things willy nilly should they come into real power, just to experiment with the exercise of it. Real amateurs in charge at last!

      • lomamonster says:

        Political observers will find that at the advent of the next Congress, the GOP will promptly throw the Tea Party under the bus that it arrived in, along with the fundamentalists that stuck their thumbs out for a ride. It’s an old story that will be repeated in order to save what is left of a party desperate to redeem itself through governance in its final throws.

  23. […] behind a border wall Cowering behind a border wall Over the next few weeks we can expect to hear a lot from Republicans about border security. What we […]

    • CaptSternn says:

      Hmmm, not so sure about that one, Lifer. I mean there is a reason some people are in prison. You know, murderes, rapists, abusers, robbers and thieves. I don’t think I want those types of people just let loose to roam free and do whatever they want to do. That would be anarchy, and that is never a good thing.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        How lucky then, comic-boy, that no-one has actually suggested that.

        But if you couldn’t flagrantly lie about and obviously misrepresent others’ positions, you wouldn’t actually have much to say.

      • CaptSternn says:

        I suppose you couldn’t be bothered to open the link and read the quote atb the bottom of the page, bird. No, that you be you being informed, and we all know that will never happen.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Illegal immigration may fall under the category of drug use and prostitution — perhaps deserving of decriminalization, in the spirit of jury nullification, etc.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Sternn, if you want to converse about material on an entirely separate set of discussion forums, perhaps you should post there, instead. I concentrate on our talks here. If that wasn’t what you were referring to, perhaps you could have used your limited thinking and writing skills to make that at least somewhat clear.

        But perhaps your desire to escape stems from your frequent failures and disgraces here. I could understand that.

  24. kabuzz61 says:

    There is no chance for comprehensive anything. Obama shot that with his ‘comprehensive’ healthcare law which we now find has been predicated on lies to the public because ‘they are stupid.’

    Secondly, the immigration reform of Reagan’s era was with the promise from the democrats that they would fund enforcing the border. Of course, they lied again.

    Chris, if you heavily fine those that hire illegals, that is a form of security. Drop the fence non sense and quit the rhetoric. This issue has become toxic for both sides.

    Now if the dem’s would have not lied in 1986 maybe this problem would be not so much of a problem. But now we are to take their word again??? I don’t think so.

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      Never mind that 1986 was 28 years ago, a generation in both normal life and in politics, and precious few of the Democrats involved then are around now.

      The kitling is an expert at irrational bile and partisan excuses.

      • CaptSternn says:

        “Never mind that 1986 was 28 years ago, a generation in both normal life and in politics, and precious few of the Democrats involved then are around now.”

        Well, that finally kills teh claim that they became republicans. Thank you for finally admitting that claim was complete garbage and utter nonsense.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Um, no, Sternn. Many extant voters still remember or took part in that change; I was speaking of the typical, active career span for a politician. But, of course, you deliberately misunderstood. The garbage and nonsense is that stew of fetid self-delusion that swirls in your chamber-pot of a skull.

  25. texan5142 says:

    Chris, after reading your article a couple times I would say it is too pragmatic of an approach to work in the current political environment. It makes sense, therefore it would never happen.

  26. Bobo Amerigo says:

    Politically, I think this is an excellent time for the president and the Ds to make executive changes to the immigration system.

    Doing so ups their chances of winning the presidency in 2016.

    Following executive action, the Rs will get all red faced and hyperbolic. Some will reveal their racist beliefs, even as the congress is unable to get its act together to legislate.

    A couple of years of that, and nobody will want to see their faces any more.

    • texan5142 says:

      Yep I was just reading about Reagan and Bush doing basically the same thing as Obama wants to do but no one called it abuse of power or threatened to impeach them. Was it because of the R behind their name,or the color of their skin?

      • CaptSternn says:

        No, Texan. Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. Look it up.

        That’s always the problem with the left, they don’t want to deal with reality or facts, just run on bling emotion and deliberate ignorance, even judging people based on the color of their skin.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Karl Rove is proud of you, comic-boy, for always accusing the opposition of your own failings.

      • goplifer says:

        Here’s a good summary of the executive actions taken by Reagan and Bush I to close holes in Congressional immigration reform and push Congress toward action.

        http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/foreign-policy/219463-when-reagan-and-ghw-bush-took-bold-executive-action-on

        Republicans used to make sense. These are the Republican leaders who made me a Republican and give me hope for what the party could yet become.

      • texan5142 says:

        No Sternn.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Interesting link, Lifer. Bush41 does appear to have overstepped the boundries, but congress acted and passed the legislation. Basically it was an enforcement issue, but not granting amnesty nor making them legal at that tine.

        Fly, your link basically backs up what Kabuzz has posted.

      • flypusher says:

        “Fly, your link basically backs up what Kabuzz has posted.”

        Sure Sternn, if you want to completely ignore all the mentions of GOP obstruction, like the right-wing talk-radio fueled paranoia that helped sink the bipartisan deal in 07, then you could say it’s all the Dems’ fault. But that’s cheating.

        What us it with you and buzzy constantly thinking that we won’t see through your blatant cherry picking? You do realize that I actually READ my links before posting them don’t you? Or is it that you don’t care if you look ignorant?

      • CaptSternn says:

        Then you seem to have missed the part where Reagan made a deal with democrats to secure the border, and that didn’t happen. And now it is public that the democrats also got the PPACA passed based on a pack of lies.

        You also miss out on that fact that in several elections this year that near 50% of the Hispanic vote went for republicans.

        The left is not trustworthy, and more people are having their eyes opened to that fact.

      • flypusher says:

        No Sternn, I didn’t miss anything. I chose that link because it mentioned the obstruction from both sides. Anyone who insists that lack of progress on immigration reform is all on the Dems or all on the GOPers is an ignoramus and part of the problem.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Alright, Fly, the very people you support say you are stupid, and you are agreeing with them and still supporting them. They lie to you, and you want that, youn support that. You agree that you are stupid. I don’t.

      • flypusher says:

        Actually it’s your debate tactics that are stupid.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        The American people, like all people, *are* stupid. After all, fully half of them are below average.

        Anyone who has worked in computer hardware or software, in a position to deal with “users”, really ought to understand the depths of dunderheadedness to which regular people can descend.

        Mass media offers other clear demonstrations, of course. And right-wing pseudo-news media even more so.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        I agree there are totally stupid people everywhere and I also agree there are people that disagree with me idiologically but I could never support our government hiding things from the citizens for any reason unless it is top secret which Obamacare is not.

      • Crogged says:

        How about a nuanced view of the Broder spectacle, which comes from someone I often reference. He’s not American, which I think helps with perspective, outside views can reveal the entire subject.

        http://dish.andrewsullivan.com/2014/11/13/gruberism-and-our-democracy/

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        That’s a good link, Crogged; thanks for it.

        Andrew Sullivan, much like our Esteemed Blogger, is one of the few sensible Republicans left.

      • Crogged says:

        No idea why my head hears ‘Broder” for “Gruber”. I blame society.

      • flypusher says:

        I 2nd that Crogged, that’s a great find.

  27. lomamonster says:

    It is plainly evident that solving the border security problem would serve no political purpose for the Republican Party, as it can only survive through employment of the politics of fear. The GOP has carefully nurtured this technique for a considerable amount of time and will continue to do so concerning not only the border security issue, but also on a host of other issues that keep the base of the party subservient to its proud intransigence to any kind innovative social engineering. The supposed “conservative” stance on these really critical issues is in truth becoming so dated and stale as to spell the end of the idea in a massive voter rejection of it during the next Presidential election – no matter which party proposes it at first.

    The idea that the Republican Party is currently in a cohesive position to orchestrate such a reasonable change of policy is pure folly, so it appears that the Democrats will again sweep the nation in the next election with numbers so vast that it will become apparent that the GOP has indeed trapped itself in an exquisitely untenable position and will have amply demonstrated its inability to govern.

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      The Republican Party has indeed become a subsidiary of the merchants of fear, offering wholesale prices for bulk purchases, so long as the merchandise isn’t inspected too closely for quality.

    • kabuzz61 says:

      Again you liberals use a faulty premise that you get from the dem talking points or MSNBC.

      Conservatives are against amnesty because we are a nation of laws. We are or we aren’t. When it comes to the law, there is no middle ground.

      Of course I am talking to liberals who views that law as things to be used against ‘them’ people.

      • Crogged says:

        Are men made for laws or are laws made for men? You speak of ‘laws’ as if they are a physical element or a force of nature, rather than written words. Didn’t you ever get pulled over for a traffic violation and receive a warning? Immigration laws can’t be found in Deuteronomy, they aren’t from God(ess).

        There will be an amnesty, there must be because there are too many immigrants already embedded in our nation. Give us your poor, huddled, registered and fines assessed and paid, masses.

        Why shouldn’t we let people pay 2 grand, not commit a felony and become US citizens?

        What is your fear?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        “It is the spirit and not the form of law that keeps justice alive.”
        — Earl Warren

        “The quality of mercy is not strained;
        It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
        Upon the place beneath. It is twice blest;
        It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.”
        — William Shakespeare

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Crogged, I rest my case. Giving a warning is within the perogative of the law. Is there any law you or I can break and not face prosecution for that law if caught? Name one.

        But again, liberals view laws as a convenience to use when needed. Amnesty won’t and shouldn’t happen. It will sharply divide this country in a very big way.

      • Crogged says:

        If ‘convenience’ means ‘can be changed’ then you and I are one until amnesty, when we will become sharplier divideder.

  28. johngalt says:

    Landed in Munich about an hour ago. Passport control took less than a minute. En route to Spain, I will not need the passport again until my flight home. Europe has its immigration issues, but they pale in comparison to the mess we’ve made for ourselves, which is largely in the “make it here and you’ve made it” approach to border security. You want to cut down illegal immigration: then create reasonable quotas and enforce them at the point of employment.

    Here’s what border security in Europe used to look like:
    http://www.citylab.com/commute/2014/11/photographing-the-eus-abandoned-border-crossings/382708/

    • Bobo Amerigo says:

      Nice photos. And the movie ad is pretty good, too.

    • CaptSternn says:

      We don’t need passports to travel between states here either, John. Tutt and I have been to Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Arakansas and Oklahoma and never had to show even a photo ID. Imagine that.

      • flypusher says:

        Not all that long ago we didn’t need passports to go to Mexico and Canada either, and it was better that way.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        But, as everyone understands except those ridiculously overcome with longing for 18th-century politics, U.S. states no longer even pretend to be separate nations.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Cappy in true troll fashion displays his inability to grasp that states are not sovereign nations.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Well, Cap and I once wandered into Arizona, and I was glad to have my ID handy, just in case.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Th States in North American once formed a union, but remain sovieriegn states. Now the States in Europe have formed a Union, but remain soveriegn states.

        I am waiting for one of them to try and leave the Union, then they will have a “Civil War” to prevent it, and later generations will claim it was over slavery.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        The states are not sovereign. They maintain limited powers and rights, but are bound within one nation.

        Obviously.

        Except to Sternn.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        The buzzard thinks all states have the exact same laws. Or maybe she just doesn’t know what soveriegn means. I say the latter.

      • johnofgaunt75 says:

        Sternn,

        You don’t need and you never needed a passport to travel from Alberta to British Columbia, from New South Wales to Victoria or from Bavaria to Baden-Württemberg. All are partially separate states or provinces with specific powers designated to them under the larger, federal system of Canada, Australia and Germany, respectively. None of these are analogous to traveling between sovereign nations, just as traveling between Mississippi and Alabama are not analogous to traveling between sovereign nations.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        kitling, it would seem to be *you* who needs to learn what “sovereign” means.

        Or you could continue to look like an idiot.

      • johngalt says:

        Jesus, Sternn. Every time I think you can’t make a dumber comment, you prove me wrong. The US states are subordinate to the federal government; this is explicitly clear in the Constitution. In absolutely no way are Mississippi and Louisiana the equivalent of Belgium and the Netherlands. I am impressed, though, that you’ve managed to travel three whole states aways from Texas.

    • GG says:

      Lucky you. I love Spain and have visited several times as I have relatives through marriage there. Have a great time.

    • Turtles Run says:

      “”I would like some kind of ‘United States of Europe’ with a federal system,” the photographer explains. “For me that’s the right direction.””

      Can you imagine such a comment made in this country. The New World Order idiots would come out in droves like the Orcs in the Lord of the Rings. Personally, I have no issue with an open border policy like one in Europe but that would involve some realistic problem solving from our dysfunctional brethren on the right side of the aisle. .

      • texan5142 says:

        I love you Tuttles , you are a ray of sunshine in a world of darkness.

      • Turtles Run says:

        TUTTLES!!!

      • tuttabellamia says:

        That’s a cross between Tutt and Turtles.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Um, Turtles, we do have These United States of America. 50 of them, in fact, and we can freely cross the borders. I think I already point out that Tutt and I have been doing that recently.

        Maybe you are suggesting we annex the states in Canada and Mexico? Why stop there? Why not annex everything down to Panama? Manifest Destiny continued?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Harry Tuttle, in *Brazil*: “Listen, kid, we’re all in it together.”

        Which is the opposite of what Sternn believes.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Cappy, you ignorant troll (to paraphrase).

        It is the United States of America. We are a single nation unlike Eurpe which first is the name of the continent in which the nations of Spain, France, Germany, and so on occupy. If you are truly incapable of distinguishing between Alabama and France then you should consider suing your elementary school.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Or Mr. Tuttle from Don Delillo’s The Body Artist — a figment of the protagonist’s imagination.

  29. tuttabellamia says:

    Lifer wrote: “so long as people who speak English and look like me remain securely dominant.”
    ——————
    Of course it’s unjust to insist that only people who look like you remain dominant, but it’s totally reasonable to insist that people speak English if they expect to succeed. Are you not

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Are you not a champion of education as the great equalizer? Do you really expect people to succeed on any viable level without having some proficiency in English? How can anyone be competive, much less dominant, without English?

      I doubt you meant “people who speak English LIKE ME” because most America citizens are probably not as literate as you, so you must have meant simply “people who speak English.”

      • tuttabellamia says:

        The “too many core Republican voters” you mention are unreasonable in insisting that only people who “look like you” retain dominance, but totally reasonable in insisting that only people who are proficient in English be in a position of dominance or competitiveness.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Considering the idea of “people who speak English like me”, people up North don’t exactly speak English the way Texans and people from the South speak English, and the West also speaks English a little differently. Though I believe some can be successful without knowing much English at all. (Those people over in the U.K. speak and spell it all wrong. What are they thinking? We sent them there to colonize and settle, and in return they butchered the language. 😉 )

        For example, you know you are at a good Mexican restaurant when the primary language is Spanish, but even then the staff speaks enough English to serve customers that don’t speak Spanish. That is the case with our favorite Mexican restaurant. And sadly, we learned this weekend that our traditional place is closing. The building is to be torn down and replaced with a CVS. They do talk of relocating quickly with the same staff, which we hope does happen. But it still won’t be quite the same and not as convenent as their current location.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        RRIP

    • Crogged says:

      Does an immigrant need to be told that English is the dominant language in the US? If we don’t codify the language then the Hungarian will succeed anyway without ever learning English because of a few road signs and election ballots? I’m sorry, but this ‘they need to speak English” requirement is usually a dodge too, it is very obvious to immigrants that speaking English is a necessity in America. In many Texas school districts the ‘bilingual’ programs have been cut back in order to implement more immerse, English only curriculum that fast track the students into mainstream education.

  30. CaptSternn says:

    Article 1, Section 8, Clause 4 – The Congress shall have power … To establish a uniform rule of naturalization, and uniform laws on the subject of bankruptcies throughout the United States;

    The president has no legal authority to grant amnesty to anybody. If he does it anyway, the courts will strike it down in a hurry. It is his job to enforce the laws passed by congress. He may choose to not do so, but he can’t make new laws nor change laws on his own.

    Comparing the border between Holland and Belgium to the border between Egypt and Gaza is like comparing apples to suicide bombers, quite literally. There is no valid comparison. Hamas is waging terroristic war against Israel, with suicide bombers, launching rockets and more. I doubt the peoples of Holland and Belgium are doing that sort of thing to each other. And they probably don’t have a real issue with illegal immigration between their nations.

    Nor do either of those borders compare to the southern border of These United States, while the northern border could probably somewhat, almost, compare to the border between Holland and Belgium. The southern border doesn’t compare because we do have a problem with illegal immigration, but not people blowing school buses up, or launching rockets across the border or suicide bombers. The cartels are working across the border, and that is a serious and dangerous problem, but only a fool would compare that to Hamas against Israel.

    Trying to compare these different border situation to one another is either ignorant, or trolling, or maybe you expect your target audience, the left, to be as stupid as Gruber claims they are. We on the right see through such things with no problem. To have an intelligent discussion with us, you need to abandon such claims, assumptions, ideas and arguments and stick with the valid, intelligent points and arguments.

    After sifting through the garbage, you did make some intelligent and thoughtful points and arguments.

    Prohibition is one of the biggest problems we have, and that we have caused in other countries, not just south of our border, but also north as well as across the seas and oceans. When we brought on the prohibition of alcohol, violent crime and murder rates went through the roof. When it was repealed, those things fell by 65%.

    When that happened, the federal government, as well as local governments, had no reason to justify the expanded law enforcement agencies, the spending of those agencies, nor the infringement of our rights. So they brought prohibition back, first abusing the powers to tax and when that failed, the abuse of the commerce clause and assumed guilt without proof or due process. (Sound familiar? Yes, that assumed guilt without proof or due process has been expanded to other areas that violate our civil rights.)

    Turning a blind eye to hiring and exploiting illegal aliens is another serious problem, as is the non-enforcement of our immigration laws. Far down on the list is reforming our immigration laws to bring them up to date, to make it easier to get work visas and maybe easier to get the types of visas that open the door to immigrating and seeking citizenship. Though on the latter, we do make it easier than many other countries.

    You are a defeatist and have already declared losing in 2016, I don’t agree. But you do say republicans have a chance here, and I do agree with that. They are not going to repeal the Controlled Substances Act, just not going to happen, sadly. Nor will democrats repeal it, not even when they had the super majority they used to pass the PPACA. So scrap that idea for the time being.

    Move on but keep working on that point, pass a bill that will enforce security on the southern border, that will deny amnesty to those that have come here illegally, that will make it easier to come here legally, that will punish those that aid and/or hire illegal aliens and demand the deportation of those here illegally. But when the right has passed such laws, the left throws a fit and the Obama administration sues.

    • johngalt says:

      The president probably cannot issue an amnesty, but he can establish priorities with which the laws will be enforced. We do not assign sufficient resources to law enforcement agencies to do the job 100%, nor will we, so I see no problem in making families a low priority.

      Pretending that we can deport 11 million (or 14 million or whatever) is nonsense. GOP-sponsored bills that purport to do that are unrealistic garbage and should be shoved in the same circular file that all the other GOP passed garbage has been. Pass an adult, serious effort at immigration reform and I’ll be happy to listen.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Again with the defeatist attitude. Of course we can deport people. Detain them when caught, then send them home.

      • flypusher says:

        More evidence that you don’t get math.

      • CaptSternn says:

        How do you eat an elephant, Fly? One bite at a time.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Not deporting them costs bilions, from education to health care to jobs and also losing income tax at the federal level, which is not exactly a cost but it is a loss of revenue.

      • flypusher says:

        All those people wouldn’t be employed under the table if someone wasn’t turning a nice profit off the cheap labor.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Then we should stop that, Fly. But when laws are passed to stop such things, your side screams foul and sues to keep it from being stopped. It is your side that wants them exploited. You really do like that cheap labor.

      • flypusher says:

        Sternn nobody fell for your intellectually dishonest BS the first 100 times, so why do you think the 101st time will be different? I know you are referencing the AZ law, and you have been told multiple times that it was the “papers please” aspect, which anyone with more 3 functioning neurons knows will disproportionately be applied to people with darker skin and Spanish accents/ surnames, rather than employer sanctions, that people object to.

        You really ought to stop insulting everyone’s intelligence so much.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        It’s the same dishonesty Republicans have perfected in recent years, such as with Texas’ recent abortion law. They claim the debate over it provides clear proof that Texas liberals support late-term abortions, when those restrictions were actually the LEAST objectionable parts of the legislation, and were clearly described as such by opponents.

        It’s a cynical, cowardly need to create paranoid propaganda, rather than the willingness to actually engage with issues on the merits.

    • texan5142 says:

      Thanks for the laugh.

      After sifting through the garbage.

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      Sternn gabbles, “The president has no legal authority to grant amnesty to anybody.”

      And comic-boy displays his ignorance of the actual Constitution once again.

      Article II, Section 2 gives the president the power to issue unilateral pardons.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Sure, he can grant pardons, and they will still be illegal aliens.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Even if he pardons their offenses?

        If I pardon you of the crime of entering this country *illegally*, then obviously you are here *legally*. Now, if you left and came back, you might commit the crime again, but for now you’re fine.

      • CaptSternn says:

        No, bird, it doesn’t work that way. They still don’t have visas, work or otherwise, and are still here illegally.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        If pardoned, they’re here legally, and thus are entitled to visas.

        Really, comic-boy; one would think you were being *deliberately* stupid. No one could perform like you out of purely natural inclinations.

  31. tuttabellamia says:

    Chris, you talk as though Hispanics are a newly-arrived never-before-seen culture. They’ve been around for a quite a while now. Why is it that they are just recently being perceived as such a cultural threat? I don’t think it’s just because their numbers have increased. It’s that their culture and language are now promoted on a formal, policy level, with bilingual education and Hispanic cultural studies, which is infuriating to “white” people used to immigrants assimilating to a great extent, with their heritage not obliterated but.in the background, acknowledged and accepted, but informally.

    I’m thinking that maybe we should tackle the illegal immigration issue from the cultural aspect. Should we tone down the focus on Hispanic culture and stress illegal immigrants’ quest to be American? Place greater emphasis on being or becoming proficient in English as a prerequisite for amnesty? That might help make amnesty just a bit more palatable to some. Not just from a policy standpoint but from a media standpoint. It’s all about image and impressions, after all.

    I was reading an article from the early ’50s in the Houston Post or Chronicle about Mr. Felix Tijerina, owner of Felix’s Restaurant, and he was described simply as a successful businessman, with no mention of his being Hispanic and therefore deserving of special praise.

    • CaptSternn says:

      I think Lifer focuses too much on race, ethnicity and religion. I meant to address that in my comment, but it completely slipped my mind.

      I also think he is making the assumption of how people will vote based on their heritage, skin color, ethnic background and religious beliefs. Seems this last round of elections shows that such assumptions are not valid.

      • texan5142 says:

        Well there are many who do vote based on their heritage. Many vote republican or democrat because that is how they have been raised, it is part of their heritage. Few break free from the cycle of indoctrination, just like religion.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Captain, you ‘think’ lifer focuses on race, ethnicity and religion? How about always. Or 99% of the time as does his echo chamber.

      • texan5142 says:

        The echo chamber is between your ears cat.

      • texan5142 says:

        Sorry ment to say the echo chamber might be between your ears.

  32. flypusher says:

    If just pot was treated in the same manner as tobacco and alcohol, how much would be saved in enforcement expenses? How much would be gained in tax revenue? How much less $ would the cartels take in? There is no valid scientific reason that pot should be in the same classification as things like heroin and cocaine. None.

    disclaimer- I’ve never tried pot, and I probably won’t even if it becomes legal. But when people use ignorance and prejudice instead of science to set policy in matters like this, major FUBARs result. I strongly object to scientific ignorance winning out, no matter what the issue is.

    • johngalt says:

      Why limit it to pot? There is absolutely no way that carte blanche legalization would impose costs or problems greater than prohibition has.

      • flypusher says:

        I singled out pot because I see it as a special case- a drug that’s classified and treated as something far more dangerous than it likely is.

  33. Joe says:

    Why do you care? You’re not even near the border…it won’t affect you.

    • texan5142 says:

      That is the same thing some Americans were saying before WWII.

    • goplifer says:

      And here come the trolls…

      • CaptSternn says:

        “And here come the trolls…”

        And then Fly and Texan show up. Funny.

        Or was it me and Tutt you are calling trolls? Or as I suggested, maybe you were just trolling with some of your “points”?

    • flypusher says:

      “You’re not even near the border…it won’t affect you.”

      Wrong. It effects everyone. The degrees of the effects vary, but even places as far from the Southern border as Chicago feel some effects.

      Obama is now the guy with pretty much nothing to lose, in the political sense. He is not concerned with getting reelected, the midterms are done, and the numbers aren’t there for overturning vetoes. So it’s going to be a bumpy 2 years, and I’m not optimistic about the pragmatists winning out on this issue any time soon.

    • texan5142 says:

      Joe study history and you’ll find many examples of people with such an attitude as yours that found out the hard way they were woefully wrong.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s

Goodreads

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 471 other followers

%d bloggers like this: