Archive for May, 2007

Memorial Day (May 28, 2007)

Posted in Society on May 28, 2007 by

Silence is most appropriate today.  Maybe the sound of a flag waving.  Remember.

Bumper sticker of the week:

The Land Of The Free Because Of The Brave

The Immigration Imbroglio (May 21, 2007)

Posted in Immigration on May 21, 2007 by

The outlines of proposed immigration bills include a provision to require those who are in the country illegally to return home before being considered for legal re-entry.  Of the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants, is there a realistic expectation that even 10,000 would be fooled by this offer?  The desire to control a country’s borders is a reasonable exercise of sovereignty.  However, the border with Mexico will always be as porous as a colander.  Building the Berlin Wall on the border with Mexico is as ill-fated as the Berlin Wall.  Under any scenario, the Wall can only be constructed economically with illegal labor from Mexico.  As someone observed, if the U.S. builds a ten foot wall, those who seek to enter will build an eleven foot ladder.  Some will tunnel under the wall and others will saunter around it.

There are likely to be a million non-legal immigrants a year into the U.S. every year regardless of what is done or not done.  Trying to stem the tide of illegal immigration is akin to passing legislation ordering the tides to stop running.  The tides flow in and out with some predictability.  The tide of immigrants flows one way.  In 2008: 13 million total non-legal immigrants; 2009: 14 million; 2010: 15 million; 2011: ….  Some have said that the immigrants bring with them poverty; every immigrant group coming to America brought with them poverty–the British, French, German, Dutch, Russian, Italian, Irish, Polish, etc.  Americans are legitimately divided on the just solution and would rather debate the challenge.  At core, Americans are simply unwilling to admit the limits of legislation.

Bumper sticker of the week:

No Hoy Excusa La Violencia Domestica

Term Limits (May 14, 2007)

Posted in Politics, Term Limits on May 14, 2007 by

Senators Byrd, Stevens and Inouye (and others) haul billions of dollars of pork to West Virginia, Alaska and Hawaii (and other locales).  Some say that the citizens of those states can exercise the franchise and limit their terms of office.  However, the citizens of these states want the pork.  The problem is that the citizens of other states cannot vote to get politicians from offending states out of office and away from the public trough.

Term limits are necessary to reduce abusive spending, among other public maladies.  Term limits of six two-year terms in the House and two six-year terms in the Senate balance the desires for institutional memory and new ideas.  The professional politician will be limited to two dozen years in the Congress.  The 22nd Amendment states in pertinent part that: “No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice . . . .”  The consummate professional pol is limited to three decades ((2 x 6) + (6 x 2) + (4 x 2)) at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue.  Most individuals focus their careers on either the House (Sam Rayburn) or the Senate (Strom Thurmond) and would be limited by these limits.  These limits are hardly restrictive, yet they provide some outside parameters.

Bumper sticker of the week:

Stop Repeat Offenders
Don’t Re-elect Them

Shop While They Drop – The $2.99 Sacrifice (May 7, 2007)

Posted in Consumerism, Military, Society on May 7, 2007 by

After the events on 9/11, Bush suggested that the American populace should go shopping.  Not that they should sacrifice but that they should consume.  Not that they should give up but that they go get.  There is a deep disconnection between the American public and the troops in Iraq.  While a few fight, the rest shop ’til they drop.  They shop while the soldiers drop.  They shop for a “Support The Troops” decal, slap it on the back of the SUV and call it good.  The $2.99 sacrifice.

Bumper stickers of the week:

“…And they, since they/ Were not the one dead, turned to their affairs”

War is terrorism with a bigger budget.