Thursday, May 18, 2006

Idiots, Stupidity and Politics

Morons in Washington

I have always believed that the core problems we face as a country stem from incompetency within government and our political leaders. Nothing corrupts more than power. With that said, there lies the fundamental problem we have with politicians. Before our leaders do the right thing or change a system that has continuously failed, they all weigh the political costs against what may be the right course of action or reforming flawed ideas.

The current debate over immigration is a perfect example. After decades of ignoring a problem and not enforcing laws that already exist, we have come to a boiling point in our nations history, forcing our government to deal with a problem that has existed since before I was born. The issue is not nearly as complicated as the media and politicians have made it to be.

For starters and most importantly, in a post 9/11 world, securing our borders is crucial. The idea of placing the National Guard on the border is not only a good idea, it's a no-brainer. If there is any debate regarding using the guard, it should be whether or not 6,000 troops is enough. The other day Chicago police stopped a cargo van packed with 23 illegal aliens from Mexico. I can't help but think how easy it would have been to pack that van with a dirty bomb or biological agents and blow it up in a major American city. I blame the Bush administration and a GOP controlled congress for not dealing with the borders in September of 2001.

The idea of placing a barrier fence along our borders is another no-brainer. The United States has been very fortunate not to have been attacked since 9/11, credit the Bush administration and GOP congress deserve, but we need to press on with security measures and a fence is an appropriate step.

Regarding the 12 million illegal aliens in the United States, sending them all back to their country of origin is simply unrealistic, despite the claims by the far-right. To do so would involve local law enforcement agencies and they do not have the manpower, detention centers and money to do so. Also, reality dictates that major cities such as Chicago who declare themselves immigrant friendly, would never abide by the Federal mandates. They already don't enforce the laws on the books.

Providing a path to citizenship with the penalties such as the President has laid out is the right course of action. However, I adamantly stress that individuals who have criminal records must not be able to gain citizenship and we must stress learning basic English as a requirement to gaining citizenship. I'm just waiting for the day that myself or a colleague gets sued for not being able to provide emergency services to an individual because I don't understand Spanish.

Ten years ago if you would of asked me my thoughts on immigration, my answer would of been open borders and no need to make English the official language. However age, experience and reality of a post 9/11 world have shaped my views considerably. The first and foremost duty of government is to protect her citizens. There is no other way than to militarily secure our border and limit immigration into America. For economic and safety reasons, English needs to be the national language. If my great grandma could attempt to learn English when she was in her seventies than sure as heck can school age kids learn English as well as their parents.

Everything I have stated today may be fine and dandy, but it's all moot unless new laws are actually enforced. That remains to be seen and the track record for government is not good.

Political ramifications will always determine policy. Most Democrats don't want to see any change in the immigration policy. Any changes that will decrease the size of what is commonly referred to as the welfare state and a population relying on entitlement programs means less voters. The Progressive left who controls the Democratic Party will only survive if people can't help themselves. As far as the GOP, I have no idea what is going on in their heads. Americans overwhelmingly support the idea of increased border security and immigration reform. They also believe that the majority of immigrants are hard working folks trying to make a better life for their families (family values). Shamefully many Republicans just want to see illegals deported, even though they contribute to society and sending 12 million people back to their native lands is impossible. It also must be stated that many Republicans are not hot on the idea of immigration reform either. The GOP has strong support among Hispanic voters and many believe immigration reform would anger these constituents. Again, don't do what is right, but what is politically beneficial. Now you know why I believe most politicians are ethically challenged and why relying the Federal government to protect you is a suicide pack.

Paulie

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