I have nothing against immigration in principle and nothing against Mexicans. Illegals, or what are known in the construction trades as "first generation Mexicans," are hard workers. They show up for work sober. They will work from dawn to dark and on holidays. They don't take a job in order to restore their eligibility for unemployment compensation, or in order to claim or arrange an injury that pays worker's compensation and drives up the worker's comp tax on the employer until he can no longer compete for contracts.
As for crime committed by illegals or immigrants generally, it pales into insignificance compared to the crimes of the neoconservatives against humanity, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Neoconservatives used lies and deception to lead America into a lost war that has killed and maimed tens or hundreds of thousands of people, made the United States a hated and reviled country, and destroyed our soft power. Neoconservatives have re-established the medieval practices of torture, self-incrimination, and hearsay and secret evidence. By overturning habeas corpus, neoconservatives have laid the foundation for a tyrannical police state. If I could rid America of neoconservatives, I would accept the entire population of Mexico.
Immigration is a problem because it is occurring on a scale that cannot be assimilated and, thereby is helping to balkanize our country. America is already being balkanized by other factors, the most important of which are the quotas that, in an ironic twist of history, came out of the Civil Rights Act.
The purpose of the Civil Rights Act was to reaffirm and to reinforce the 14th Amendment's requirement of equal protection of law. As Larry Stratton and I documented 12 years ago in The New Color Line, the new federal civil rights bureaucracy turned the act upside down and created new status-based privileges, or quotas, based on race, soon to be expanded to gender and disability. By sabotaging the act, federal bureaucrats, abetted by federal courts, introduced de jure privilege, which has since been expanded to all Americans except white males. Blacks had to cope with de facto inequality, but white males are saddled with de jure inequality.
Mexicans fit the federal definition of a racial minority. Amnesty that leads to citizenship for millions of Mexicans or Hispanics brings with it the requirement that Mexicans be represented in university admissions, professions, and all sectors of employment in proportion to their percentage of the population. Failure of universities and employers to adjust their percentages for the new quotas will result in lawsuits and penalties.
The other massive cost of unchecked Mexican immigration is that it raises the percentage of the population that is poor and poorly educated precisely at the time when jobs offshoring is shrinking the jobs that constitute ladders of upward mobility. If the obscene salaries of the corporate elite are removed from the income data, it is clear that the real incomes of the American people have ceased to rise. Adding a large number of lower income citizens will further overburden demands on public resources, as well as common resources such as water and air quality.
The failure of the US Government to address the immigration issue should surprise no one, as the US Government has failed to address every issue.
The US government responds to organized moneyed interests. It responds to nothing else.
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Paul Craig Roberts [email him] was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan Administration. He is the author of Supply-Side Revolution : An Insider's Account of Policymaking in Washington; Alienation and the Soviet Economy and Meltdown: Inside the Soviet Economy, and is the co-author with Lawrence M. Stratton of The Tyranny of Good Intentions : How Prosecutors and Bureaucrats Are Trampling the Constitution in the Name of Justice. Click here for Peter Brimelow's Forbes Magazine interview with Roberts about the recent epidemic of prosecutorial misconduct.