Memo From Mexico | Why Won't Bush Ask Mexico For Immigration Reciprocity?
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President Bush just passed through Mexico (March 12-14th). His visit was welcomed by protestors in both Mexico City and Merida, the city which he visited. Protestors called Bush a murderer, burned American flags, and bore anti-Bush banners, such as the one which read "Bush You Are Not Welcome in Mexico—Go to Hell ".

How could Mexican protestors possibly be saying such ugly things about our president?

Bush has been a Mexico booster and illegal immigration defender since before Day One of his presidency.

Bush has constantly lauded Mexican culture and celebrated the Latinization of the United States.

Bush has consistently done all in his power to frustrate anyone's attempt to control the border. In 2005, he publicly slandered the Minutemen in the presence of the previous president of Mexico.

So Bush—dubbed "The Mexichurian Candidate" by my VDARE.COM colleague Brenda Walker— ought to be the most popular American in Mexico, right?

Absolutely not.

Bush has sold out U.S. sovereignty, but he's not even appreciated for it south of the border!

Bush's visit was the culmination of a major taxpayer-supported junket to Latin American (Brazil, Uruguay, Colombia, Guatemala as well as Mexico). Everywhere, he pandered to Latin Americans by promising to work for a U.S. immigration policy even more open than what we have now.

The Wall Street Journal theorizes (probably correctly) that one of Bush's goals was to use the trip to pressure Republican legislators to support his latest "immigration reform" proposal:

"President Bush is using his Latin America tour to kick off a make-or-break debate over immigration overhaul in the U.S….In an apparent effort to leverage his political power, at nearly every stop in this five-nation swing, Mr. Bush has mentioned the pressure he is getting from Latin leaders for action on immigration." ( Bush Trip Theme: Immigration, By John D. McKinnon, Wall Street Journal, March 13th, 2007)

Here in Mexico, Bush's trip was the talk of the town. Even Telecom Tycoon Carlos Slim, at $49 billion, Mexico's richest man and the world's third richest man, felt the need to express his opinion. At a press conference before Bush's arrival, Slim slammed the border fence, calling it "illegal" and "absurd."

Slim also lectured Americans as to how they should manage their immigration policy:

"What is needed (in the U.S.) is legal immigration, immigration accords, but not one just for highly qualified people."

Slim has a lot of gall to say this, in a country where the minimum wage is $4 a day while he's worth $49 billion. Even with his enormous fortune and monopolistic business advantages, Slim's enterprises only provide jobs for a quarter of a million employees in Mexico.

But then again, who's putting pressure on Slim? Certainly not the Mexican government!

El Universal, Mexico's paper of record, prepared for the Bush visit by interviewing Malu Grajales, an expert on feng shui and Chinese astrology, who analyzed Bush's face and said it exhibits political success, envy and stubbornness, among other qualities. (Envidia, poder, soledad y mala salud, refleja rostro de Bush, By Claudia Castro, El Universal, March 13th, 2007).

In a statement before Bush's arrival, President Calderon made it clear that he would not be subservient to Bush. No surprise. The number one goal of Mexican foreign policy is not to be subservient to the United States. .

President Bush, on the other hand, made every effort to be subservient. Here's what he had to say in Merida on March 13:

"My pledge to you and your government, but more important to the people of Mexico, is I'll work as hard as I possibly can to pass comprehensive immigration reform."

So Bush is making "pledges" to the people of Mexico? How about pledging to Americans that he will preserve, protect and defend the U.S. constitution?

Oops, he already did that. Twice.

As for Calderon, he took another obligatory jab at the border fence, saying it wouldn't stop immigration. [Calderon tells Bush Mexico Needs More Deb Reichmann, ABC News International, March 13th, 2007]

But the Mexican president also said that

"Mexicans lose in each migrant the best of our people young people, working people … strong people. We want to generate jobs for Mexicans here in Mexico. Because that is the only way to truly solve the migratory issue."

Noble sentiments—but the Presidente has it backwards. Mass emigration removes Mexico's incentive to "generate jobs for Mexicans here in Mexico."

The next day, March 14th, Bush and Calderon held a joint press conference, before Bush departed for Washington. Bush's statement was pure Bush:

… a good migration law will help both economies and will help the security of both countries. And the reason I say that is that if people can come into our country, for example, on a temporary basis to work, doing jobs Americans aren't doing, they won't have to sneak across the border. "

(Bush said the same thing in his State of the Union address: he thinks Mexicans have to sneak across the border so we may as well let them in anyway).

"And so, Mr. President, as we discussed, I will work with Congress, members of both political parties, to pass immigration law that will enable us to respect the rule of law and, at the same time, respect humanity in a way that upholds the values of the United States of America. "[President Bush and President Calderon Participate in a Joint Press Availability The White House March 14th, 2007]

Calderon declared that "The border should bring us together and not separate us."

By definition, a border is a separation. But today's globalist leaders like Bush and Calderon don't see it that way.

Calderon mentioned that he has relatives in the U.S., picking vegetables, and presumably illegal, since he won't deny that they are.

And Calderon had this to say:

"I am from Michoacan, and in Michoacan, we have four million people, two million of these Michoacanos are in the States. We want them to come back; we want them to find jobs here in Mexico. We miss them. These are our best people. These are bold people, they're young, they're strong, they're talented. They have overcome tremendous adversity, who are working so that they can come back to their country someday."

OK, Presidente, if you feel that strongly about your fellow Michoacanos in the U.S., why not invite them back right now?

Quoth Calderon:

"And I want to say that I am fighting so that instead of having our people cross the border to find work, we want investments to cross the border and come over here."

Sounds great. And if George W. Bush really wants to help Mexico, why doesn't he promote private investment in Mexico?

Helping Mexicans in Mexico, now that's a novel concept.

Bush expends much more energy and political capital in opening up the border than he does in encouraging investment in Mexico.

And despite all the talk about "negotiating" a migratory accord, it's really not a "negotiation" in the traditional sense of the Word. Mexico is never required to give anything in exchange for open access to the U.S. for its citizens.

A logical place to start if one were really "negotiating" would be reciprocity for American living in Mexico (like yours truly).

At the least, the U.S. government could demand the same rights for Americans in Mexico that Mexico demands for Mexicans in the U.S.

Similarly, the U.S. could demand that Americans be permitted to immigrate to Mexico as freely as Mexicans are apparently to be allowed to emigrate to the U.S.

Isn't turnabout fair play?

Needless to say, there is absolutely no discussion of immigration reciprocity in Mexico. But our president has never shown the slightest interest in it either. For him, it's all about how much we can surrender to the Mexican government. And, as the Bush example demonstrates, no matter how much he offers, it's never enough!

So what's Bush's real goal? Is it really to help Mexico—or to transform the United States of America?

American citizen Allan Wall (email him) resides in Mexico, with a legal permit issued him by the Mexican government. Allan recently returned from a tour of duty in Iraq with the Texas Army National Guard. His VDARE.COM articles are archived here; his FRONTPAGEMAG.COM articles are archived here his "Dispatches from Iraq" are archived here his website is here.

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