June 20, 2007


Some Texans Say Border Fence Will Sever Routine (RALPH BLUMENTHAL, 6/20/07, NY Times)

Antonio N. Zavaleta, a vice president and professor of anthropology at the University of Texas branch in Brownsville, saw a slight problem in the route of a border fence that federal officials displayed at a community meeting earlier this month.

“Part of our university,” Dr. Zavaleta said, “would be on the Mexican side of the fence.”

What about traffic between classes, he wondered. “Would the students need to show a passport?”

He was not the only one who was startled. Local leaders throughout South Texas have been voicing puzzlement and alarm at the implications of the barrier, which Congress has authorized the Department of Homeland Security to construct along 370 miles of the United States-Mexico border, including 153 miles in Texas, by December 2008.

Don't they realize that Tom Tancredo knows what's good for them?

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 20, 2007 7:52 AM

I know you, oj, will just chuckle and note that the fence is the figleaf that will get the amnesty passed, but it's disconcerting to see a large % of Americans -- and seemingly most if not all readers of "conservative" blogs -- go insane over this issue. The fence in particular is such a preposterous idea that it borders on the psychotic.

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at June 20, 2007 8:49 AM

The fence, while preposterous, is necessary. People's trust in the govt is at an all time low. On the immigration issue there is at least 20+ years of inaction on this issue. Just last year Congress and Bush said they would build a fence and have barely started it. The people need some type of evidence that the govt will actually do something on this issue. The fence, while it would only address a small part of the problem, is simple to understand by people and therefore provides some credibility.

Posted by: AWW at June 20, 2007 9:55 AM

Uh, AWW: It's been less than a year since funding was passed. It's not the border communities' fault that EIS statements take at least a year for anything the Feds build.

Posted by: Brad S at June 20, 2007 10:34 AM

Who knew Texans would embrace politically correct diversity. Are they now guilty about the Mexican War, too?

Posted by: Ed Bush at June 20, 2007 10:45 AM

"This nation was founded by immigrants..."

A common argument used by proponents of massive illegal immigration. The only problem is that when the previous generations of immigrants came over there was no social security.

I find it incomprehensible that Democrats who opposed privatization of only 4% of soc sec contributions, can now favor massive amnesty. The drain on social security will exceed this 4% by threefold.

When speaker Pelosi 'promised' that in 2040, those who had paid into the system would still recieve 75% of what was promised, no one cared.

The only conclusion that can be reached is that Democrats(and rinos) are going to give away our social security to buy votes.

(one name that should be remembered:

Alexandra Pelosi. Since Nancy has taken her speaker post, she has had her granddaughter 'pushed' upon america, in the context of CNN doing a feature on her documentary of christian bashing. Accompanying her to Syria? Alexandra. Nancy seeking to have extended family allowed to take a spouse's place on a junket? Alexandra.

Bottom line? Pelosi grooming her granddaughter, demonstrating a concern about 'her' future, but then selling out everyone else's kids futures for votes. Pathetic.

Posted by: paul at June 20, 2007 12:33 PM

Certainly a sensible proposal from the Right would be that new citizens be put in personal SS accounts rather than the current system. That would give immigration a further boost.

Posted by: oj at June 20, 2007 1:01 PM

Yes, the fence is the placebo that will make the Right feel better without having any actual effect.

Posted by: oj at June 20, 2007 1:03 PM

Paul has it exactly backward. An influx of foreign workers is one of the few hopes that traditional social security has.

Posted by: Ibid at June 20, 2007 1:20 PM

"Paul has it exactly backward. An influx of foreign workers is one of the few hopes that traditional social security has."

The trick to that theory is that unless the immigrants we take are making more than 45K a year, they are a net drain.

Sorry OJ, but the wealthy in America support the 'relatively' poorer Americans.

I love immigration, but I want the educated Indians and Chinese, who are willing to assimilate.

The idea that by taking the labor class from Mexico, we are doing them a favor is hysterical.

I favor immigration/amensty if we make money off of the deal. Under the current plan we piss away what we have.

Posted by: paul at June 20, 2007 1:38 PM

I'm a bit confused: is the university fully inside Texas or not? If so, then just build the fence where the border is; if not, I guess we've accidentally invaded Mexico and should probably pay them for the land, then build a fence along the newly-defined border. This strikes me as bureaucrats being dumb again, rather than one side being right or wrong on the issue.

Posted by: Just John at June 20, 2007 1:59 PM

We have more money than we know what to do with. We can always use more Americans. Immigrants don't want or need our tax money, just let them keep their own.

Posted by: oj at June 20, 2007 4:16 PM

Paul: So, in fact, your concern is not social security at all, as social security is unambiguously helped by immigration, but some other mythical program?

Posted by: Ibid at June 20, 2007 8:14 PM

Why is part of a Texas university built in a foreign country?

I hope that branch of the fine UT system doesn't offer a geography major. I don't think I'd want to take, say, a surveying class from a university that can't even keep its buildings on the right side of the border. :)

Posted by: kevin whited at June 20, 2007 9:10 PM

No part of the UT system is built in a foreign country. But part of the UT campus at Brownsville on the Mexican border would be cut off by the proposed fence, which would be built well inside American territory.

Of course, the fence is a joke to begin with. But this idiocy just makes it even funnier.

Posted by: Casey Abell at June 20, 2007 10:50 PM

Just a quick lob at Paul, it's a lot easier to bring up a laborer then it is to tear down an educated person. Florence King had a very nice essay on that topic. Remember, that even with the division of labor that Civilization gives us, it's still wider at the bottom then the top. We need laborers more then we need another post modern art teacher.

Posted by: Robert Mitchell Jr. at June 20, 2007 11:23 PM

Federalism? Whiskey Tango Foxtrot?*

Uh, Art. I, Section 8, remember that? National government makes rules for naturalization, has jurisdiction over international commerce, makes laws necessary and proper to the same.

This is so obvious and blatent that we all must be sure that ther "federalism" crack was a joke.

Joking aside, keep in mind that the rules regarding "federalism" are sufficeintly fine-tuned and arcane as to produce all sorts of different results. Federalism, therefore, is not a principle to be pursued in itelf. If we do this we lose, because we shall be pulling our punches when "federalism" restrains our agenda, and "federalism" may offer no defense when the other side seeks to move by the national route.
*Phonetic for WTF="What the f***?"

Posted by: Lou Gots at June 21, 2007 5:21 AM

Naturalization isn't immigration.

Posted by: oj at June 21, 2007 7:09 AM

"We have more money than we know what to do with."

so let's give it away? ever hear of something called the national debt?

If we need labor at any cost, why not just invite the Rwandan refugees to America, giving them priority over Mexicans?

(As an aside, I actually envy the Mexicans. Strong family values, religious, practical in all senses more of a cohesive unit than Americans. They are actually kind and generous, and generally peaceful.)

"So, in fact, your concern is not social security at all, as social security is unambiguously helped by immigration, but some other mythical program?"

you have no idea what you are talking about...

social security is helped by those who will pay more taxes, than they recieve in social services, and the cut off is generally 45k...I'll repeat,

low paid immigrants receiving social spending are a net drain, becuase they do not put in as much as they take.

Posted by: paul at June 21, 2007 10:42 AM

Get real--immigration is foreign commerce; every border crossing, every entry, whether long-term of short, is foreign commerce.

Posted by: Lou Gots at June 21, 2007 5:14 PM

The debt is at dangerously low levels given a world economy that is almost entirely dependent on it for secure securities.

Posted by: oj at June 21, 2007 5:39 PM

The notion that humans are mere commodities is too gay.

Posted by: oj at June 21, 2007 7:22 PM