Saturday, September 22, 2007

Editorial: "Border control only way to stop tragedy"

First, thanks to the unnamed Courier editor for mentioning that "Not every illegal who makes it across the border" is a cop-killer. It would have been nice if the quote were more on the order of "Vanishingly few illegal immigrants are cop-killers or violent criminals of any kind," but the truth on this issue would be a lot to expect.

OK, editor, you and grandstanding Phil Gordon want to exhort the country to "secure our borders," and you malign every elected official in this country by implying corruption that keeps them from doing it. In your world, that's logical. So do your readers this respect: show, in detail, how that job can be done, with numbers and engineering.

A whole lot of very smart people have been working on this problem for decades and conclude that not only is it not practical in economic terms, it's not possible, period. You think you're smarter than all those experts, fine: put up or shut up. I think you're blowing smoke up the asses of your readers just to keep them stirred up and fearful enough to keep voting Republican. Prove me wrong.


Anonymous said...

Well put Steve. I am not sure how to solve the border problem and I don't think anyone in Washington knows how to either. As far as a fence goes, Sen. Trent Lott (a republican from Mississippi) said: "I have goats that can get out of a fence and people are a lot smarter than goats." So thanks for the editorial adding to the hype machine. Editorials like this is what gives the 'media' a bad name.

Be responsible, explain where to cut from the budget to solve the border issue? Cut out Iraq funding (snicker)? Children's Health Insurance programs? Where will the money come from once someone figures it out?

Face it, like it or not, we are one piece of land. We should model our land like Europe does and get on with it. This is nothing more than republicans taking their last breath and showing their true racist colors. jared

Granny J said...

So --we should import poverty, subsidize a corrupt, failed state & treat one group of "immigrants" differently than any other group hoping to enter the USA.

It seems to me that at one time, the California border was the preferred crossing point. Now it's Ariz. What happened to change the pattern?

Steven Ayres said...

What I'm saying, Granny, is that pouring money into a solution that can't work, as our editor advocates, is stupid and pointless.

What will work is being less concerned about limiting access to our country and more about keeping immigrants within the legal lines and out of the black market. Jared has it right.

Media Dude said...

OK, play the game by your own rules. If we don't like how the editor spews rhetoric without answers or a way to get it done, then you do the same. Don't close the border, and how are you going to keep the "immigrants within the legal lines and out of the black market"? How will you do this?

Steven Ayres said...

Go back to first principles and work with what's going to happen anyway. The problems with illegal immigration come about not because they're immigrants, but because they're illegal. They're illegal because we impose arbitrary limits on legal immigration by statute, as well as heavy bureaucratic rules that slow the process down. Where there's demand and an artificial shortage, the black market will supply the demand, that's Econ 101. By eliminating the shortage, we eliminate the black market.

The solution is not to close the border, but to do the American thing, open the doors wider, and use this volunteer resource to make us all richer. Create a light, easy system of cross-border worker registration and a legal framework for bringing them into the payroll tax system. Don't assume that every border-crosser wants to be a US citizen, and encourage them to maintain their lives and families in their home countries. Make this freedom mutual for Americans to work cross-border as part of the NAFTA treaty, and so finally free all the components of free trade.

Legal workers have to compete on a level playing field within the labor laws, so there's no loss of jobs by natives to an exploited labor force and no blood profits for exploitative businesses.

This labor force is already here and working -- that has deep implications for our economy. Bring it into the light and we maintain the benefits of the work they're doing and allow them to participate in the social fabric, meaning less crime and misery in our towns and cities.

Smart politicians are already on most of these ideas and quietly pushing them forward -- and they're not all Dems.

Anonymous said...

To answer Granny's question - the feds cranked up security on the California border a few years back to reduce crossings. They were having drug running problems (I can recall one case of a drug dealer living in Tijuana, with tunnels running from his tennis court into south San Diego).
But, cranking up SoCal security pushed the traffic into unguarded Arizona. They figured that the harsh desert out near Ajo and west of Nogales would prevent people from crossing. Of course, that didn't happen.
So now the Feds are learning their lesson that they not only now need a solution for Ariz., but also for New Mexico, and Texas (to prevent the same thing from occurring).

Anonymous said...

I want to help build the fence wile singing "God Bless America", eating my freedom fries, and having one thumb up my ars. This is how Americans are doing the job right know of running this country. I dont know how to solve the "problem", but to be real about it, I dont mind paying a few illegals to do my yard work. Why would a patriotic freedom frie eating fat cat American like me say that? Well, to put it simply because I dont want to pay another patriotic freedom frie eating American twice the pirce for a job well done. It's capitalism baby!! Cheap labor equals fat pockets and plenty of freedom fries and apple pie woohoo long live the U.S OF A! The employers we all work for do the same darn thing, are we all that dumb to not see this? This is a for profit world get with it. If they dont pick them here, they will pick them in China for you.

homer simpson said...

what ya'll thinking about that immigration series?