Domestic Policy, Government, Immigration, Uncategorized

A Blow for Immigration and Governmental Reform

This country will not be a permanently good place for any of us to live in unless we make it reasonably good place for all of us to live in.

Theodore Roosevelt

A federal district court in Houston has struck down the Obama Administration’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and its companion for parents of those children. Specifically, it held that the program was an administrative rule making required to follow the notice and comment process of the federal Administrative Procedures Act (APA).  The failure of the Obama Administration to follow this process rendered the program illegal. CNN helpfully included a copy of the Order and Opinion of the court here. The decision is not only a step towards effective immigration reform, but also strikes a blow against the power of the administrative state. 

The court essentially took up the issues ignored in the US Supreme Court’s Regents of the University of California opinion that I previously discussed here.  This decision struck down the attempted rescission of the DACA program by the Trump Administration as itself violating the APA while glossing over the illegalities in the original rulemaking. This new federal court opinion turns the tables and focuses on those infirmities, noting that the Supreme Court itself held that DACA was not simply a passive non-enforcement policy. Instead, it conferred affirmative immigration relief such as the right to receive a work permit and the right to travel abroad without permission.  It did so despite admitting in the original memorandum that only the Congress could confer affirmative immigration relief. The district court’s opinion built on Justice Clarence Thomas’s dissent in the Regents opinion by highlighting the real reason for the program – the inability of successive Presidents to unite the Congress and country around an immigration bill that included effective limits and enforcement as well as the necessary relief for longtime residents. 

The district court was mindful of the hardships an immediate cessation of the program would cause to current participants and simply prohibited further expansion of the program for the time being. The Biden Administration has announced that it will appeal the order and urged Congress to pass a bill fixing the problem. The administration’s latter position is correct. Both political parties need to look beyond the twin corruptions of identity politics and corporate contributions to pass a comprehensive immigration reform legalizing the status of the “Dreamers” and creating real enforceable limits on future immigration as I advocated in this post. A truly comprehensive answer to the immigration crisis would be a new beginning for insuring the American Dream for both lifetime citizens and immigrants alike. 

Domestic Policy, Immigration

Time for Action, not Evasion

An old proverb advises there are two things decent people should never see being made –  laws and sausages. Both processes can be disgusting to watch.  Immigration legislation certainly falls into that category. For example, the crisis at the border should be focusing the attention of Congress on immigration enforcement and border control issues.  Instead, globalist Democrats and some Republicans in the House of Representatives sent two bills to the Senate with the transparent objective of avoiding the duty to enact any meaningful reform by creating two sets of amnesties.  This allows them to side-step the controversial, but necessary immigration limitation and enforcement issues.  The goal of legalizing some long – time immigrant residents is laudable and necessary, but should be part of comprehensive immigration reform.  

The first bill (HR 6) is the American Dream and Promise Act, which would legalize the so-called Dreamers, though it would extend this protection far beyond those currently covered by the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and associated programs. Currently, only those children who entered the United States without authorization prior to June 15, 2012 (and their parents) are covered by DACA and associated prosecution deferral programs. HR 6 would extend the program to cover 3 million children, including children of other visa holders that ordinarily would be required to leave.  Many of these are deserving of relief, but it again should be part of a comprehensive bill. 

The second bill is more problematic. The Farm Worker Modernization Act (HR 1603) would allow up to 1.5 million farmworkers who have worked without authorization for up to 10 years to obtain temporary status and the opportunity to attain a green card and then obtain other employment.  It would also grant amnesty to the employers who illegally employed them. The main saving grace of the bill is that it would require farm employers to use E-verify for their workers in the future.  It also updates the visa programs for farm workers and strengthens protections for their wages and working conditions. 

Again, both of these bills could be appropriate ways to bring these workers out of the darkness and give them the fundamental rights they need.  However, the Senate should not take up either bill now until it considers a comprehensive immigration bill with effective limitations and enforcement mechanisms. I  urge you to write or e-mail your state’s senators to ask them to table or vote against the two bills until it considers such a comprehensive bill.   

China, Domestic Policy, Foreign Policy, General, Immigration, Politics

Obama Redux

On its face, this quotation from Theodore Roosevelt would seem rather obvious. Indeed, the legitimacy of American democracy rests on the theory that our elected leaders will pursue policies roughly matching their political rhetoric. This honesty requires not just avoiding outright lies, but also hypocrisy, i.e., saying one thing and doing the opposite.

In fact, our recent experience in America shows TR’s principle to be regrettably revolutionary in practice.  Donald Trump’s crude and divisive lies plumbed new depths of political dishonesty. However, the glib hypocrisy of the Obama Administration was the catalyst for the Trump revolution of 2016.   Obama was a master of the art of eloquently claiming one goal while pursuing manifestly contradictory and damaging policies at the same time.  The American people might not always have been able to put their finger on the lie itself but could see how the rhetoric clashed with the policy realities in their daily lives. It is why, contrary to media claims, Obama had the lowest average approval rating of any post- Cold War President prior to Trump.

Sadly, the Biden Administration is adopting the same strategy of dissemblance and hypocrisy. Like Obama in the middle of the 2008 Great Recession, Biden seeks to restructure the American economic system in a way that imposes sacrifices on average Americans but enables the globalist elite to escape similar sacrifices.  Its climate change policies would have the effect of not only eliminating thousands of jobs, but, as this article suggests, appeasing China. It makes the disturbing claim that Biden’s climate change ambassador Kerry is willing to compromise on American security and economic interests in exchange for unlikely and unenforceable carbon emission reductions by the Chinese.  When confronted with the effects of such policies on American workers, he showed his elitist callousness by claiming that oil & gas workers can simply build solar panels. He conveniently ignored the fact that solar industry jobs pay about 20% less than equivalent petroleum industry jobs.

Meanwhile, Biden’s immigration proposal would legalize our de facto policy of unrestricted immigration at the expense of low-income and technical workers, who are disproportionately women and minorities. Many of those are the same heroes and heroines who kept our nation going during the coronavirus pandemic. Nevertheless, the Administration is pursuing a policy that would continue the kind of wage slavery and economic inequality Biden campaigned against (see this previous article). His only response is to invoke the divisive rhetoric of woke politics and income redistribution.  Even longtime liberals are questioning the honesty of these policies in light of the inequality crisis in California.

Loyal readers of this blog will quickly recall my vote for Biden expressed last year and ask if it was worth it. I still believe he was the best of a painful choice, which was confirmed by the Capitol riot and Trump’s petty sabotage of the Republican campaign in the Georgia runoff elections. The Democrats’ narrow control of Congress still gives nationalists a realistic chance to highlight Biden Administration hypocrisies so the American people can weigh in and decide if this is really what they voted for.  This site will try to help by analyzing and publicizing the contradictions and hypocrisies, concentrating on three areas – infrastructure, especially related to climate adaptation, immigration and political reform.  Please let me know of any other issues you would like to see covered as well.