Outrage of the week was surely Utah Senator Mike Lee getting his S.386 bill through the U.S. Senate. S.386 means a massive loosening of the rules for foreign workers to take up white-collar jobs in the U.S.A.
Washington Watcher II wrote on Thursday:
The deceptively-named Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act scraps country caps on migration and allows India to dominate our immigration system. It’s estimated that over 90 percent of professional employment-based visas would go to Indians for the next 10 years under the bill. The Act is heavily touted by the Indian lobby and Big Tech.
Lee didn't have to break much of a sweat to get his bill passed. He used a Senate rule called "Unanimous Consent," which allows the chamber to pass legislation with no hearings or debate, so long as no Senator objects.
No Senator did—not one.
One of my themes about immigration, which I've been airing for at least seventeen years, is that it's really really hard to get people to think about immigration. It's a slow, silent process, working away invisibly in the background of our national life. There's always something more urgent, more dramatic, for politicians to make speeches about. Immigration policy is the classic case of frog-boiling.
The immigration boosters—which nowadays means Big Tech, Big Agriculture, the Fortune 500, and the Chamber of Commerce, with a small and dwindling support chorus of old-style immigration romantics singing about Ellis Island and Famine Ships—all know how reluctant people are to think about immigration.
They like that reluctance, so they make us more reluctant by adding yards and yards of fine print to the immigration rules: wrinkles, curlicues, escape hatches, specialty clauses. You need a Ph.D. level of knowledge to master it all.
I've been through the U.S. immigration system myself, twice, and I've been writing about it for twenty years; yet still today, when I'm reading some news story about the issue, I get caught by some acronym or piece of jargon I never saw before.
Just to illustrate that point, here are three short paragraphs from an article by Neil Munro. Neil's writing mainly about displacement of blue-collar workers here, but the level of jargon is the same for white-collar workers:
The CEOs are allowed to get green cards for roughly 11,000 blue-collar workers each year via the "Fourth Preference" category of the EB process. The 2018 data showed a work-and-wait workforce of just 737 non-college workers. But the 2020 data shows a work-and-wait population of 7,000 non-college workers.
Many blue-collar industries are using the green card workforce to hire in compliant cheap foreigners—and exclude ambitious, disabled, or uncooperative Americans—from jobs such as truck driving, meatpacking, dairy and farming, landscaping, cooking, cleaning, fast food, and home health aide.
Also, the blue-collar work-and-wait population is rising because roughly 50,000 migrants from Latin America have persuaded state judges to provide them with Special Immigrant Juvenile (SIJ) status. That is a huge jump from 19,000 in early 2018. These SIJ migrants get their green cards from the fourth category slice of EB green cards, usually with employers' approval.
[CEOs Balloon Captive "Green Card Workforce" in U.S. Jobs, by Neil Munro, Breitbart.com, December 3, 2020]
Let me go through the jargon there. "EB" stands for "Employment-Based." That's a category of Green Cards for permanent residence in the U.S.A.
Above, the Green Card I was issued in 1994—I became an American citizen before it expired.
You can get permanent residence all sorts of ways—for example, by being related to a U.S. citizen. Each way of getting permanent residence is graded into preference categories; for example, in the case of family relationships, by how closely related you are to that citizen. For Employment-Based Green Cards there are five preference levels.
Hoo-kay; so what's "work and wait"? Well, while you're waiting for your Fourth Preference Employment-Based Green Card—and you could be waiting a few years—you can be working here on a guest-worker visa, like the famous H-1B.
So far so good; but then my eye got stuck on SIJ, the Special Immigrant Juvenile status. What the heck is that? All these years reading and writing about immigration, I never heard of an SIJ.
Five'll get ya ten not one U.S. Senator could explain Special Immigrant Juvenile status to you. There are likely about fifteen people in Washington, D.C. who could explain it; and every one of them is an immigration lawyer trying to game the system on behalf of some Fortune 500 client.
(Translation of the phrase "gaming the system": replacing some American worker with a cheaper foreign one.)
That's our immigration system. That's what it's like: a vast tangled knot of laws, regulations, rules, executive orders, and court rulings. If Americans at large knew it in all its cold cash-racketeering dishonesty, there would be massive nationwide indignation.
They don't, though. They have too many other things to worry about—too many to permit them to take a couple of years off to study the difference between EB and SIJ.
Our legislators, or at any rate their staffs, should do the studying for us; but they are all bought and paid for by the employer lobbies and AILA … Sorry: That's A-I-L-A, the American Immigration Lawyers Association, whose members go to bed hungry very, very rarely.
There needs to be a great simplification. Someone needs to march into the Temple and overturn the tables of the moneychangers.
We thought Donald Trump might be the person, but he wasn't up to it.
Still, Trump can even now do the nation a service to stop the immigration system being even more of an assault on middle-class citizens than it currently is.
He can veto S.386 when it comes to his desk; or, if the congresscritters try to slip it into some other funding bill, he can veto that bill, no matter what it is.
I urge him to do so.
John Derbyshire [email him] writes an incredible amount on all sorts of subjects for all kinds of outlets. (This no longer includes National Review, whose editors had some kind of tantrum and fired him.) He is the author of We Are Doomed: Reclaiming Conservative Pessimism and several other books. He has had two books published by VDARE.com com: FROM THE DISSIDENT RIGHT (also available in Kindle) and FROM THE DISSIDENT RIGHT II: ESSAYS 2013.
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