February 26, 2013
Quick Point on the Big-Lizards Immigration Position (Prior to Consequential Post That Will Be Sure to Annoy Most of You If You Don't Read This Post First!)
And maybe it will still vex you; but at least with this set-up, I'll have a fighting chance!
I want to make clear from the outset, before I post an abrasive immigration thingie in the next few days, that I do not under any circumstances support "comprehensive" immigration reform.
Rather, I prefer a piecemeal packet of distinct bills, one for each element of immigration reform -- but starting with reform of the legal immigration system, before anything else is done, including anything to give a path to residency for illegals already here. And yes, even before securing the border, since even border security itself requires first that we get our legal immigration system in shape.
What do I mean by "reform?" It's a very astute question; I'm glad you asked. We start with this basic premise: No person should ever be admitted to permanent residency in the United States unless he is willing and able to assimilate to our shared American heritage of Capitalism, individual liberty, fundamental rights and civil liberties, being responsible for earning one's own living, and American exceptionalism.
Then we create, as from scratch, a legal immigration system, operating within the context of the above imperative, that is rational, predictable, just, and open to everyone willing and able to assimilate, without regard to race, sex, religion, country of origin, previous condition of servitude, and without regard to family members already in residence in the United States.
That is, the only criterion should be assimilability -- not where you came from or how many cousins you have living here already.
All else is dicta; and I will not presume to dicta-tate exactly how we define those terms and how we should enforce them.
There are many possible ways to enforce, to the extent possible, such an imperative with those characteristics; some kind of point system for example. But clearly no such thing will happen while Barack "Skeets" Obama or any other Democrat of his mold is president, or while the Democratic Party controls either house of Congress.
Still and all, nothing that we do anent immigration will have the slightest positive effect unless we first bias legal immigration in the direction of assimilability. A melting pot, not a dad blamed salad bowl!
All right, got it? So when you read the controversial later post, please do so with this position in mind. Maybe folks won't get so het up that way!
Hatched by Dafydd on this day, February 26, 2013, at the time of 1:38 AM
The following hissed in response by: snochasr
Having followed your position for some time, I can agree with your "orderly" process, rather than some messy "comprehensive" program (like Obamacare) that nobody understands and makes matters much, much worse. I do have one quibble-- OK, two. The first is that "assimilabilty" ought to include things like having relatives already here, especially since we aren't starting with a clean slate, here. The second is that I think you DO have to have a limit on how many people come from where, because some countries have a distinct advantage in getting folks here, while other nations may have citizens better able to assimilate.
Finally, I suppose, you say that assimilation includes the idea of "being responsible for earning one's own living" but I would like to have some objective criterion by which that could be judged, in line with current law requiring that immigrants not become "wards of the state," i.e. being ACTUALLY able to make their own living.
The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh
Much of this is more specific than I wanted to get. It's a fool's errand to propose really detailed legislation, since Congress will do the writing (and horse trading); at best, "pundants" like us should only push for big-picture aspirations, general themes, and such.
I really don't want "having a relative living here" to be a major benefit; it's far too easy for it to become the primary or even sole reason why someone gets residency.
I have no problem with applicants having a sponsor; in fact, it's a very good idea. But why must that sponsor be a relative? Why not a friend, a mentor, a colleague, an organization?
No, I would not put a limit on the number from each country -- because I believe we are not admitting anywhere near as many immigrants as we should be in the first place. Our fertility rate is already below replacement; the only reason we're not losing population as Europe and Japan are is that we have immigration, and those immigrants tend to have a higher fertility rate.
We need more people in the U.S., not fewer.
Finally, anent the "being responsible for earning one's own living," my thought was that each and every element of assimilation required before admittance for residency should be judged by "objective criteria;" that's part of the "predictability" I include in the reform goal: Every applicant should know exactly what he must do (and mustn't do!) to get his green card.
That requires objective criteria -- not the vague, generalized, subjective garbage required now, which is so easily manipulated to benefit those that the Left believes will become permanent wards of the state, hence permanent and eternal Democratic voters.
The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh at February 26, 2013 1:45 PM
The following hissed in response by: George O'Har
I agree with you completely. Alas, my fear is the kleptocrats who are running the show simply don't care. They like the idea immigration, legal and otherwise, has been turned into a politcal football. Your idea on assimilation, right on! Rational, reasonable, right. Thank you.
The following hissed in response by: Sabba Hillel
The only point that I might have an objection to is the word assimilation. That is because in the past it has been used against religious Jews to attempt to force them to abandon their religion. One example is that many people were fired every Friday for being unable to work on the Sabbath. Similarly were the Christmas celebrations when 98% of a particular school was Jewish or the assumption that every Jew had to attend school and take exams on the Jewish holy days.
The above hissed in response by: Sabba Hillel at February 28, 2013 5:34 PM
The following hissed in response by: Baggi
I am in complete agreement with you, Dafydd.
And having worked for the Federal Government for the past 17 years now as an Immigration Officer, I wish something like your reasonable policies would be implemented.
Communism is also actually a really good idea.
Your idea and communism have about the exact same chance of working though.
And for the same reason, human nature. People don't come to America because they are American's on the inside just waiting to get out once they get here (Although some do, sadly that's very few).
Most people come here for all sorts of reasons that have nothing to do with our shared identity and culture, and they want to hang on to what they have. Take a trip south, and notice how it begins to look more and more like Mexico as you approach the border. This isn't by accident, this is because Mexican's love their Mexican culture. They aren't going to give this up to come to America, instead, they will find ways around the law.
Which is what happens in communism and why it always turns into fascism. Everyone is always looking out for their own best interests.
I'd be comfortable in estimating that even though right now it is the law of the land that to become a US Citizen, you must speak english, less than half the people who become citizens speak english. Why? Because we have a waiver for everything. If you're too old, for example, or too young, you don't have to speak English to become a citizen.
See how nice we are? Are you going to be the evil person to make them learn English, Dafydd? Of course you're not, you can understand how hard it is for a young child or an elderly person to learn a new language, right? And certainly you're not going to bar them from becoming citizens, right?
How about the mentally retarded? No, of course you're not going to bar them either. What's mentally retarded again? Well, retarded is a bad word, so let's say mentally handicapped. How do you fit into the mentally handicapped waiver? A- average in highschool? Never finished high school?
You should see where I'm going with this.
I think it's great that you'd like a world full of puppy dog's and flowers, so would I.
I also think it's naive, and not cute naive, like a small child, but dangerous naive, like Leftists who think we can have a smurf society, which always surprises them when it turns out to be a dictatorship and people have to be put into reeducation camps to learn how to become a proper smurf.
The following hissed in response by: Bart Johnson
The much-maligned system currently in place is not nearly as damaged as commonly described.
Let's start with why it takes so long to get into the Country legally. In part is because we try to limit how many people we admit each year from each foreign country. We don't want to be over-run with people from Kosovo, for example, so we set a limit on how many may be admitted each year. By that logic, Mexico is 25 years ahead of the rest of the world, and needs a time out to let other countries catch up.
We are less needful to keep out excess French because there is a large body of water in the way.
Further, there is a whole series of people we want to accept. For a while, those with AIDS were kept out, but the ACLU cured that, even though they could not cure the disease itself.
Further, it is a requirement that entrants be able to speak English. Legal immigrants from Mexico often do not meet this standard.
In short (too late) there is a set of requirements, thought to be reasonable at the time, of people we want to accept. Engineers are more needed than peasants. Unfortunately, we get relatively few Mexican engineers crossing the border.
Therefore, before we start tinkering with a relatively good system built and tested over time, we should build an effective dam to stop the flood, and then try to regulate the flow.
At least then we can make some money selling 17-foot ladders to the Mexicans.
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