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8 U.S. Code § 1324a: (1)In general It is unlawful for a person or other entity—
(A) to hire, or to recruit or refer for a fee, for employment in the United States an alien knowing the alien is an unauthorized alien (as defined in subsection (h)(3))….
Oh God. Oh God. It’s Hillary or Trump. The first, a loathsome Gorgon paddling about in the bubbling corruption and fetor of Washington, a political hooker in a plastic miniskirt crooning “I’ll do anything for a donation to my foundation.” On this soiled caryatid we are going to rest the weight of the nation?
But…Trump? A huckstering bully growling, “I can whip any man in this bar.” He doesn’t seem to have looked around the bar very carefully. I’ll vote for him because the alternative is too horrible to contemplate, but…but….
I read with astonishment his proposed policy toward Mexico. Truculence, ignorance, carney showmanship, and a weird view of Mexico. He sees it as both an enemy country and as a malign being, sentient, diabolical, bent on hurting the United States. This seems to parallel his approach to the rest of the world.
His goal regarding Latinos–the prevention of illegal immigration and the repatriation of illegal immigrants–is commendable. A country has the right to determine who enters. Some of his plans would effect this end. Yet he seems to have little understanding of the problem and believes that Mexico, which he despises, is the cause.
How so? America’s immigration mess is entirely self-inflicted. In 1965 the United States changed its laws to encourage immigration. Mexico didn’t change America’s laws. Ever since, American businessmen have knowingly, eagerly hired illegal immigrants in large numbers and exerted influence to maintain the influx. The American government under Obama encourages illegal immigration, and former administrations have looked the other way. The Democrats push for naturalization explicitly to get the votes. States give illegals driver’s licenses, health care, and schooling. “Sanctuary cities” openly defy laws as, again, does the federal government. Border patrols have been ordered, by Obama, virtually to stand down.
None of this was done by Mexico.
He is mad about the use of welfare by illegals. Trump quote: “U.S. taxpayers have been asked to pick up hundreds of billions in healthcare costs, housing costs, education costs, welfare costs, etc.”
How much sense does this make? America offers these things and then complains when they are accepted. If you don’t want illegal aliens on welfare, don’t give them welfare. Is this a difficult concept? Why is Mexico to blame for America’s stupidity?
Yet we have Trump eagerly planning ways to punish Mexico.
From his web page: “There is no doubt that Mexico is engaging in unfair subsidy behavior that has eliminated thousands of U.S. jobs….”
Fact: American businesses have moved factories to Mexico. Mexico did not force them to do this. In the United States, American businessmen intentionally give jobs to illegals. The illegals accept them. They do not “take” them. How could they? At gunpoint?
Trump is either dishonest, naive, or thinks like a ten-year-old.
Then we have: “Mexico has taken advantage of us in another way as well: gangs, drug traffickers and cartels have freely exploited our open borders and committed vast numbers of crimes inside the United States.”
Always Mexico is a conscious, malevolent being. Again Trump is blankly ignorant.
Fact: “Mexico” does not sell drugs in the United States. The cartels do. Mexico cannot control the cartels (as neither can the United States), which dominate large parts of the country, fight battles against the army and police, kill reporters and the families of soldiers known to take part in operations against them.
The cartels do far more harm to Mexico than to the United States. Wikipedia: “By the end of Felipe Calderón‘s administration (2006–12), the official death toll of the Mexican Drug War was at least 60,000.[ Estimates set the death toll above 120,000 killed by 2013, not including 27,000 missing.””
That’s taking advantage of the US? Mexican cops, soldiers, and reporters are dying in America’s drug war. Americans are not.
If Trump doesn’t know the foregoing, he is a political gerbil proposing policy without bothering to do minimal homework. If he does know it, he is a con man.
Mexicans occasionally ask, “If Americans don’t want drugs, why do they buy them?” The market for drugs exists in the first place because Americans very much want drugs: high-school students want them, often middle-schoolers, college kids, high-dollar lawyers, Congressmen on the Hill doing lines of coke at parties, liberals, conservatives, libertarians, the residue of the Sixties. Washington doesn’t want Americans to have their drugs. It is America’s problem.
Trump’s plan to require proof of citizenship to remit money to Latin America makes sense and would be effective. So would eVerify. No reason exists to make life easy for criminal aliens–which, since illegal entry into America is a crime, includes all illegals. But he is going to force Mexico to, grrr, woof, to pay for his border wall, the brown bastards.
Quote: “It’s an easy decision for Mexico: make a one-time payment of $5-10 billion to ensure that $24 billion continues to flow into their country year after year. “
This is extortion—he could equally say “Give us fifty billion or we will bomb Guadalajara.” We could profitably use the approach on Canada. It embodies his curious notion that Mexico has responsibility to enforce America’s immigration laws when the US makes no effort to enforce them.
Which would be easy, except that America doesn’t really want to do it.
It is illegal to hire illegals. See USC above. Heavy penalties are on the books. Nowhere, as far as I can determine, does Trump suggest applying those penalties to CEOs, farmers, rich women with illegal maids, and construction firms.
Leading a few dozen employers in handcuffs to the paddy wagon would have an immediate effect. Make it a rebuttable presumption that if more than ten percent of a work force are criminally in the United States, the employer knows it. In the case of corporations, deny federal contracts to companies convicted to hiring criminal aliens. As President in control of the Justice Department, Trump could begin enforcing the laws on his first day in office.
If Trump won’t move against criminal employers–if you break the law, you are a criminal, and hiring illegals is against the law–how can one regard him as more than a grandstanding opportunist?
Over and over, the pugnacity, the threatening: Quote: “Again, we have the leverage so Mexico will back down.” Over and over, if we do this, it will hurt Mexico (or China in other statements) more than it will hurt us. We have the leverage, the power. We can do what we want to them.
What if Mexico didn’t back down?
Here we have fertile ground for unintended and unpredictable consequences. There are things that governments cannot do and stay in power. Caving in to extortion may be one. The demand to pay for a wall would be a “Kiss my ass, Pedro” moment. It is clearly intended as such. If Mexico said “No” and Trump blocked remittances, his ego being threatened, it would be seen as a war on Mexico, Mexicans, and Latinos in general. Which it would be.
There are at least fifty-five million Latinos in the United States. Most are legal and not going anywhere. How wise is it for the President to attack them as Latinos, to describe them in insulting and inaccurate terms, to blame them for things they haven’t done, and create antagonism between the US and Mexico? All of this thrills white nationalists, many of whom seem to want revenge as much as they want an end to immigration. But America probably doesn’t really need another huge, hostile, self-aware racial group. Perhaps Trump should avoid creating one.
Also worth noting is that Mexico is not the banana republic of popular imagination. It is a major trading partner of the US, a nation of about 120 million, the first or second economy in Latin America depending on what Brazil is doing at the moment, with a rapidly expanding middle class. It is also host to enormous investment by American firms. For example, Ford is about to build a $1.6 billion plant here. The Donald’s school-yard-bully approach plays well with many of his constituents, but making enemies to the south is not going to help either country.
But this is a grown-up consideration. We are talking about national politics.