In my column last week, I bid an early and not-too-fond farewell to Mexican president Vicente Fox whose six-year term mercifully expires next year.
I summarized—as much as such a thing is possible in a mere 1,000 words—Fox's hypocrisy, duplicity and overall oiliness.
But in fairness to Fox (and we at VDARE.COM are nothing if not fair), I must confess that one aspect of his administration has been nothing less than brilliant.
Fox, through his sheer persistence, has helped to elevate the status of illegal aliens living in the US from criminals to quasi-citizens.
While Fox has been a disaster for Mexicans living in Mexico, he has been the best thing since sliced bread for his nationals residing north.
How Fox achieved a de facto amnesty for Mexicans, even though he could never quite pull it off de jure, is an important history lesson for the immigration reform community.
And, since it was no accident, it deserves a close look.
Here's how I see it.
First, Fox needed an enabler. And the perfect patsy for Fox turned out to be the former governor from the border state of Texas, George W. Bush.
Unlike California, Texas has a more tolerant attitude toward illegal immigration. Bush, as we unhappily learned, was soft on the National Question to begin with.
And Bush, who had met with Fox during his term as governor, provided Fox with an added bonus. Both are dedicated believers in the number one elite political philosophy of the 21st Century—globalism.
Fox sensed that he held a winning trifecta of an exploding Hispanic population in the U.S, growing influence of ethnic lobbying organizations like the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund and a paralyzing political correctness among the media and Congress. He decided to make his case for "migrant rights" early and often.
With the assistance of one of his chief lieutenants, Jorge Hernandez, Fox created the Presidential Office for Mexicans Abroad…e.g., the U.S.
As reported by VDARE.COM's Allan Wall, the newly-created agency, under the direction of Hernandez, held regular meetings with American state and federal officials to promote the Mexican agenda. Additionally, Hernandez channeled complaints from Mexicans in the U.S. directly to Fox.
Such brazen intervention in U.S. domestic policy by a foreign government is without precedent.
Fox was always totally confident that he could have his way with Bush. In fact, in an incident that marked an international low point in foreign diplomacy, Fox delivered a public sucker punch to Bush at their September 2001 joint White House press conference.
Insisted Fox in front of the blindsided Bush:
"We must and we can reach an agreement on migration before the end of this very year which will allow us, before the end of our respective terms, to make sure that there are no Mexicans who have not entered this country legally in the United States and that those Mexicans who have come into the country do so with the proper documents."
History, in the form of 9/11, intervened. And the politics of amnesty and guest worker programs have been bogged down ever since.
Nevertheless, the groundwork laid by Fox in the early months of his administration resulted in astonishing strides for Mexicans —albeit questionable from a legal perspective.
Credit Fox's tenacity for cowing federal and/or state governments to:
What makes Fox's accomplishments so much more stunning —and I have listed only a fraction of them—is when they are weighed against how little the U.S. has received in return.
Most obviously, the Fox administration refused to support the U.S war in Iraq.
And Fox will not address the long simmering dispute over U.S. water rights that have been usurped by Mexico.
According to a 2004 report by Susan Combs of the Texas Department of Agriculture, regarding the 1944 U.S.-Mexico Water Treaty
"President Fox has not demonstrated a sincere willingness to work to resolve the treaty issue."
Combs hit the nail on the head. A totally insincere Fox works for one thing only—to encourage the most desperate of his people to illegally enter the U.S.
More than four and a half years ago, just after Bush had returned from his first international trip (to Mexico, naturally), I wrote a column for my hometown paper, the Lodi News-Sentinel, asking the president "Why All the Bowing, Scraping Toward Mexico?"
Based on his dismal performance this week in Tucson and El Paso, Bush still hasn't come up with an answer.
But one thing is crystal clear: Bush is willing to take down the Republican Party in 2006 before he will do right thing on immigration for the American people.
Joe Guzzardi [email him], an instructor in English at the Lodi Adult School, has been writing a weekly newspaper column since 1988. This column is exclusive to VDARE.COM.