Texans for Oligarchy

November 4th, 2011 at 10:58 am David Frum | 29 Comments |

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And speaking of oligarchy, Rick Perry in an interview with Univision endorses the idea of granting illegal aliens the right to work in the United States–but not the right to vote.

If you were seeking to concentrate wealth and power even more tightly than today, you could not do better than this idea. Argentina followed a similar path in the late 19th and early 20th century–encouraging open immigration while accumulating obstacles to naturalization–and just look where it is today.

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29 Comments so far ↓

  • Carney

    But what about the anchor babies? As long as “temporary” or “guest workers” can have kids on US soil who are counted as US citizens, then it’s just a flimsily disguised program of mass immigration anyway, with the same electoral and political consequences.

  • jakester

    I agree with Carney’s anchor baby concerns, but work visas are not a bad idea. At least it will regulate the whole issue, give the guest workers some legal footings and increase their safety and well being in getting here.

    • Carney

      Of course work visas are a bad idea. “Guest workers” don’t go home. They stay, forever. Ask the French if their “temporary” sub-Saharans and Arabs went home. Ask the Germans if their “temporary” Turks and Kurds went home.

      In other words, you should either have a mass immigration program, or not. But don’t slip a massive, wrenching, nation-altering demographic change on a people under the guise of “temporary” or “guest” workers.

      • LFC

        Should I ask the Americans if their “temporary” Germans, Irish, French, Italians, Slovaks, Croatians, Serbs, Chinese, Koreans, etc. went home?

      • MSheridan

        Without immigration and the higher family sizes of recent immigrants, US population would have peaked in about 2020 and then started to decline. But the combo of declining birth rate and an expanding population of seniors mean that some immigration is essential. And it’s a funny thing, but for one reason or another Europeans aren’t knocking down our doors to get in. So get used to demographic change, Carney. It’s the future whether you like it or not.

        • jakester

          well maybe we should encourage the domestic baby industry instead of relying on imports as in almost every other industry?

        • MSheridan

          How, exactly? Other than the obvious methods of promoting abstinence as the primary method for birth control in sex ed classes and banning abortions, of course. Those methods DO work to raise the birth rate, but also lead to other unfortunate results.

  • Graychin

    Maybe as a compromise, we could count illegal immigrants as 3/5 of a vote.

    • HighCountry

      ^+1…can’t believe nobody has ever thought of this idea before!

      • LauraNo

        You guys are funny.

        • baw1064

          How about a system wherein the employer who sponsors the guest workers gets to vote on their behalf? I’m sure many of Perry’s friends would be quite enthralled with that idea.

  • LFC

    The issues are that we need to create a system where legal aliens can come into this country more easily but illegal aliens find it more difficult to find work, hence they don’t come here is large numbers. We’ve got our system completely backwards.

    First, identify areas where bringing legal immigrants to work here can help our nation. Let’s attract the best, brightest, and most educated (often in America) to our country. If we need certain types of workers (e.g. farm laborers), create a path to legal work. America has imported hard workers and innovators from around the world for its entire history. It’s stupid to stop now.

    Once the system for legal immigration and work is worked out it’s time to land HARD on the businesses that continue to employ illegals for added profit. Trying to scoop up individual illegals is like trying to stop an ant infestation by killing individual insects rather than getting the food that attracts them off the counter. It’s just a dumb approach. (And please don’t scream about the analogy. I don’t view illegal immigrants as insects.)

    I’m very much for legal immigration and a path to citizenship for those who decide to make a real life here, but the system we’ve got today is just a mess.

    • Sinan

      Well said. I believe the easiest way for us to curb this problem is by making the social security card tamper proof. We should be creating a new card that has been fully verified for each and every SS number in the system. Every American would have to replace their existing cards with new ones over a period of time, say 2 years. At that point, the database of SS numbers would then be separated into two groups. One would be the verified set of numbers and the other set is the unknown status set of numbers. When someone applies for SS benefits and is in the unknown set of numbers that have not been vetted, they can then be verified and join the known set. All other numbers are considered to be suspect until proven otherwise. A national database would then be available to every employer upon hiring a person to insure that the SS card and number belong to the person being hired. Anyone else cannot be hired. SS numbers are assigned to every new born child that is eligible to be a citizen creating instant SS numbers for every American born within days of birth. At that point, the bad SS numbers will end up being weeded out over time until it would be easy to identify illegal workers simply by checking their SS cards. Today, our SS cards are pieces of paper. A new card could look much like a drivers license. There would be no excuses for employers if this system were adopted.

      • NRA Liberal

        Very easily doable. The fact that it hasn’t happened ought to tell you something.

        • LauraNo

          Right. The republicans are the ones screaming about illegal immigration, so up being down, you know who the status quo suits. The pro-business, pro-low wages, anti-worker protection republicans Nothing is going to change and some people ought to just get used to it.

  • ottovbvs

    Rick Perry favors a debt peonage without voting rights. What a surprise. What is funny about the nativist anti immigration crowd who are also generally speaking the nationalists is that the US birthrate, which is one of the keys to our remaining a major world player, is immigration of whatever sort.

  • AKINR

    It’s a very logical response to a demographic shift away from the core republican voters. I’m also willing to bet that Perry’s provision will stipulate that to get the right to work, that the workers should be willing to stipulate that their children are also not citizens of the US and will not have the right to vote.

    I’m sure Perry and is conservative allies are very confortable with their new definition of what it means to be an Amercian.

  • Frumplestiltskin

    I am an expat who has nothing but a working visa and no vote and I don’t feel the remotest bit exploited.
    And I also have no idea why Carney is so against Capitalism, you know, the free movement of goods and labor. If anything I think NAFTA doesn’t go remotely far enough, that there is so much potential in Latin America being wasted because of artificial restrictions on capitalism. Capitalism is just not a white thing.
    As long as Mexico and Central America remain poor the US will be a magnet, so we should make a grand bargain with Mexico, open your economy in exchange for much fewer restrictions, if because of this we choose to lessen immigration from the rest of the world then so be it, the more open the economy of Mexico is the greater will be the reason for people to remain here.

    And many guest workers do go home, Carney literally knows nothing. I know many Mexicans here who lived in the states a few years, make a bucket of money, came back and opened businesses and bought homes. You can buy a very nice house here near the coast for 40 to 50 thousand dollars and many elderly return here to retire since their social security checks go so much further (not to mention non latino Americans who retire here in Baja California and other such areas) The nearly 1 million Americans who live here (and many who work here) feel fine with this arrangement. We don’t call it a Mexican oligarchy, it is to our mutual advantage.

    • ottovbvs

      “And I also have no idea why Carney is so against Capitalism,”

      Well that’s because he doesn’t fully comprehend all its implications. I’m not sure I do but I’m damned sure he doesn’t. Carney likes to be selective in choosing the bits of capitalism he likes and rejecting those he doesn’t like. Rather as some women like those chocolates with rasperry centers and don’t like those with coffee centers.

    • Sinan

      Latin America will never open the doors to us because they know exactly how it turns out. They did it before. United Fruit Company…..

      • jakester

        We we all know how great Latin America does things when left by themselves. Their backwards, feudal Spanish colonial heritage really primed them for freedom and self government

  • overshoot

    IMHO the POG really missed the boat the last time it had control of all three branches of government. Rather than dink around with privatizing Social Security, they should simply have made being a net taxpayer (a la David Weber) a requirement for the franchise.

    • ottovbvs

      Since the vast majority of non payers are seniors living principally on SS and Medicare somehow I don’t see that flying.

      • overshoot

        Good point — however, it would be easy to define SS as “deferred compensation” — remember, it comes out of after-tax income. Likewise, Medicare is defined as an insurance benefit paid for during someone’s working life.

        The big problem would be getting the constitutional bar on poll taxes out of the way. Since that’s case law rather than explicit, a cooperative Supreme Court (and since Thomas and Kennedy aren’t reliable on this point, it might take at least one more) would be required. That, or a Constitutional amendment. With a POG win next year, that might be possible.

  • Steve D

    Wait – I’m confused. Supposedly illegals come here to have anchor babies so they will be citizens, but Obama can’t be a citizen, even though he was born in the U.S., because his father wasn’t a U.S. citizen. Lock Rick Perry and Oily Taitz in a room and let them duke it out.