July 2007 Archives
I wanted to get down to the gun show this past weekend, but I've been about as busy as a one armed paper-hanger. My wife is out west helping fight wild fires; I'm here taking care of the little ones.
For those of faith, please pray for the communities she is working with -- they are on alert for evacuation -- and for my wife. The situation out there is getting dangerous ("her" fire grew by 15000 acres in a single day two days ago). While she generally isn't "on the line" (she is a fire information officer, she no longer is a fire fighter).
"When we have legal taxpayers struggling to keep medical insurance, I don't think this is too much to ask."
"I don't feel like there is anything wrong with legal immigration," said Hoke. "But if they want to come here illegally and use our services that are paid for by taxpayers, I have a problem with that."
Hoke would also like to see policies put in place to fine employers hiring illegal immigrants.
Page County has seen an increase in the number of immigrants in the last several years. Over the last two years, Page County Public Schools had to hire staff to educate students that do not speak English.
"We have to allow them medical services and to go to school," said Hoke, "but if we wouldn't allow this to happen maybe they would stay in their own country. When we have legal taxpayers struggling to keep medical insurance, I don't think this is too much to ask."
I have been tagged by Riley to "list eight habits or facts about yourself, then tag eight more people." Piece of cake.
1). From ages 8 - 11, I grew up enamored with NASCAR, sharks, boxing (Muhammad Ali), and Elke Sommer.
2). I am both compelled, and repelled, by Wild Man Fischer's "My Name Is Larry." I can listen to it over and over.
3). From age 13-17 my entire life revolved around Bruce Springsteen, and I saw him in concert 4 times before the "Born To Run" album was released, once at a movie theater in Red Bank, New Jersey. Soon after he began playing "large venues," I moved on to Frank Zappa and Tom Waits.
4). I am insomniac to a degree that most would find debilitating.
5). I believe in the bottom of my heart that "everyone else can be wrong." This is surprisingly annoying to some people.
6). If our nation was ever to suffer shortages of red wine, seltzer water or nicotine gum, it would be a cold, dark time for one particular citizen.
7). I love Bob Marley's "Buffalo Soldiers," because I was a huge Banana Splits fan.
8). Favorite movie: "The Man Who Would Be King." Followed closely by the DVD-collection seasons of "24".
I hereby tag:
A federal judge has struck down the Illegal Immigration Relief Act, ruling Hazleton's proposed crackdown on landlords and employers doing business with illegal immigrants is unconstitutional. In a 206 - page opinion, U.S. District Judge James M. Munley stated "federal law prohibits Hazleton from enforcing any of the provisions of its ordinance."...
A previous court order issued by Munley has put Hazleton's ordinance on hold since November. Today's decision is expected to be appealed to Third Circuit Court in Philadelphia.
Actually, Mayor Lou Barletta has already made clear the effort won't stop at Circuit Court, either.
Fred Thompson just brought Spencer Abraham, former senator and Energy Secretary, onto his campaign team.
Spencer Abraham is, to put it mildly, an open borders guy
A good friend, who has been advocating for immigration enforcement since the 1980s, writes:
For years we were at war with Spencer Abraham. Worse than Ted Kennedy. He virtually killed any chance that the Senate would deal with legal immigration in 1996. He was a steady feature in the ANCIR newsletter back in those days. FAIR and Numbers launched an ad campaign against Abraham that caught him at a bad moment in the summer before his re-election. He was forced to drain his election coffers defending himself and he never recovered. FAIR and Numbers took a lot of heat for this (in 2000 people didn't care much about immigration) but it was enough to get Debbie Stabenow elected.
If the rumor that Abraham will be the campaign manager turns out to be true, Fred Thompson will not be the next president of the United States.
U.S. District Judge James Munley is supposed to issue his decision on Hazleton, PA's Illegal Immigration Relief Act in the next few hours.
HSM members just found out their meeting was going to draw opponents, but apparently the police chief was already aware of it.
I wonder what exactly a protest at another group's meeting is supposed to accomplish besides demonstrating a surplus of free time. It seems like their energies might be better directed at the decision makers in Prince William County.
Members and supporters of HSM are encouraged to show up for tonight's meeting, to counterbalance the sideshow and also get a first-hand look at the pro-illegal movement's tactics.
UPDATE: More at Blog Khan.
[Following is a guest editorial by the most excellent Nan Matthis of American Daughter]
North American Union
by Nancy Matthis at ADMC.
It's almost a done deal. While most patriotic Americans have been preoccupied this summer with the invasion of illegal aliens across our southern border with Mexico, President Bush has been quietly finalizing plans with Stephen Harper and Felipe Calderon to eradicate our national sovereignty. They'll wrap it up on August 20 at a meeting in Montebello, Quebec.
Soon the United States will be subsumed into a North American Union, just as the nations in Europe have been gobbled up by the European Union. Boundaries will melt away and our dollar will be replaced with the amero, giving the "globalistas" an opportunity to get rid of that pesky phrase In God we trust which reminds us of our rapidly vanishing heritage.
Judging from reports we receive from our friends across the pond, this is not a good thing for nations with successful economies. What it does is bring all the participants into the same business climate, a sort of socialism at the national level -- an advantage for the less robust nations and a huge disadvantage for the vibrant economies.
One of the worst results of such a union is the migration of people within the union that results. In the European Union, for example, poor Romanians are pouring into the United Kingdom and dumping themselves onto the overburdened social services system. Currently in the United States, illegal immigration across our southern border is overtaxing our schools, hospitals, law enforcement and welfare systems. Within the North American Union, the fiscal penalties to our citizens would be greatly multiplied, and it would be legal.
As this calamity bears down on us, the mainstream media are strangely silent. One has to look to Canada to find anyone sounding the alarm. We want to call our readers' attention to this copyrighted article by Global Research. We excerpt a portion here under the principle of "fair use" but we urge everyone to visit their website and read all of it:
...extiende su bienvenida a trabajadores undocumentados.
New Haven, Connecticut has set up an extremely generous new program for illegal aliens, providing many of the benefits of citizenship. To assist in this effort, ALIPAC is conducting a major national campaign to encourage all illegal aliens from everywhere in the U.S. to move to New Haven, Connecticut.
It is supposed to be a fine city, so I say we all get on board and dedicate a little time to furthering this effort.
Print off several copies of this flyer, then run, do not walk, to your local grocery store bulletin board, etc.
Pretty powerful stuff worth listening to till the end. I am sure we will be seeing a lot more of this in the coming months. The sheer number of illegals being brought across the southern border is shifting public perception of the issue, across party lines.
Another day, another rant. I'm getting frustrated with the concept that "we are trying to define ourselves". I can understand that whole-heartedly! We are a nation that pledges allegiance to a flag that law says can be desecrated as is our first amendment right. I see. If the flag means nothing to some of our citizens then an oath to it and the republic for which it stands also falls by the wayside. The logic follows that an oath of office holds no consequence as upholding the Constitution of the United States is just that....an oath that is hollow. So where do we focus on acceptability and accountability? Let's look.
I was reading Tom Rust's website trying to find out why this man (the ex-mayor of Herndondo whose watch allowed the significant increase of illegals in the town) would initiate such ridiculous and prejudice fines on the drivers of Virginia. On his site was most recently asked questions as to why only Virginians? The response was...constitutionality...working on ways....unfortunately...
Yes, I believe that it is unfortunate that the thinking is that stiffer fines on Virginia drivers will help fill the transportation coffiers of our area. This under the guise of "reducing drunk and reckless driving". In reality, it is a sham for non-enforcement of all driving code laws. Much of this comes from the areas police forces and lack of monies for additional officers or the courts being overworked and understaffed. I have heard this arguement for years.
Craig Hudgins, Independent candidate for Virginia Senate (challenging incumbent Ken Stolle), will be the guest on Bearing Drift's podcast tonight at 7:00 pm. Clicking on the graphic at that link should allow you to listen.
To call in with questions: (718) 664-9599
You could also probably leave questions in the comments section to that post.
Ken Stolle helped kill quite a few immigration-enforcement bills which passed the House of Delegates with veto-proof majorities in the recent session.
For this reason alone, it is worth your time to hear what Craig Hudgins has to say.
[This is a guest editorial from American Daughter]
Local Action, Outside Interference
by Nancy Matthis at ADMC
Prince William County in Virginia is one of the more distant suburbs of the metropolitan Washington, DC area. It used to be an idyllic setting, and residents who worked downtown were willing to endure the longer commute in return for the privilege of raising their families in delightful and safe surroundings.
But recently, the county has been overrun with an illegal immigrant population estimated at about 40,000 out of a total population of about 350,000. Put differently, over 11% of the county's residents do not belong. The hard-working, tax-paying young families who do have the right to live there are supporting illegal aliens at a ratio of roughly 31 to 4.
The quality of life is deteriorating around the legitimate homeowners who have invested their future in the county. Multiple families violate the zoning ordinances to jam into "boarding houses" in single-family residential areas. Schools, hospitals and social services are burdened with non-English-speaking aliens. Public spaces are plagued with crime, including murder. There is a growing MS-13 gang problem.
Recently, the citizens of Prince William County took action to reclaim their American way of life. In a public effort that enjoyed overwhelming local support, the County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to crack down on illegal immigration.
A powerful national organization is attempting to intimidate the citizens from exercising local sovereignty. The Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund, based in New York City, promised a lawsuit. Their threat, made before the Board of Supervisors voted, was reported on Lou Dobbs Tonight:
FOSTER MAEL, SENIOR ATTORNEY, PUERTO RICAN LEGAL DEFENSE & EDUCATION FUND: We think that the County should be on notice that what they are doing will have serious legal consequences for the County so they can't say, oh, we're surprised. Because, yes, we do think it violates federal law. And so we think they should be aware of that before they make the final decisions as to how theyâ€™re going to proceed here....
BILL TUCKER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The involvement of PRLDF ... is not surprising. Theyâ€™ve acted to prevent several local communities from enacting similar ordinances, mostly notably Hazleton, Pennsylvania. Their involvement is usually seen as legally and financially intimidating ...
So the County, in this case Prince William, is left with a choice - spend millions on social services or spend the money on lawyers defending its ordinances.
The American Civil Liberties Union is waiting and watching, according to this report in the Christian Science Monitor:
More communities use local police to enforce US immigration law Prince William County in Virginia is one of a growing number of counties and cities making their own immigration reforms. By Zoe Tillman
.... when political leaders in Prince William County saw national reform legislation falter last month in the Senate, they approved their own immigration-reform resolution that, among other things, would give local police a shot at enforcement.
To that end, the Board of Supervisors voted unanimously on July 10 to allow county police officers the authority to check the citizenship status of anyone they've stopped or arrested whom they have "probable cause" to believe is in the US illegally. The county board has yet to define "probable cause," but board chairman Corey Stewart says it may be based on whether a person has a driver's license.
The county "has reached a boiling point," says Mr. Stewart. An influx of illegal immigrants over the past four years has led to overcrowded houses and schools, overstretched public services, and a rising problem with gangs, he says....
So far, the ACLU of Virginia has no plans to challenge Prince William County's resolution. That could change, says executive director Kent Willis, after its details become clear.
It's like Texas picante sauce made in New York City.
Pr. WILLIAM SLAYING Police Charge 3 With Murder in Beating
Three men have been charged with murder in the beating death of a 21-year-old Manassas man who was last seen alive running from a mob of men, Prince William County police said yesterday....
Arrested were Marvin A. Rodriguez-Barrera, 19, of the 3500 block of Coxcomb Mews in Dale City; Salvador M. Elias-Miranda, 25, of the same address; and Elias I. Quinteros-Soriano, 29, of the 7800 block of Meadow Ct. in Manassas. They are being held without bond.
Pr. William Passes Resolution Targeting Illegal Immigration Wednesday, July 11, 2007
Prince William County supervisors voted unanimously last night to approve a resolution that targets illegal immigrants by attempting to curb their access to public services and increasing immigration enforcement by local police....
The largest board meeting crowd in 20 years showed up for the vote at the county government complex, turning Prince William into a microcosm of a debate playing out in communities across the country in the wake of Congress's failure to reform immigration laws....
A group has appropriated the Help Save .... name, by forming "Help Save Virginia Beach," without apparently bothering to take on one bit of the concept - which at very least would entail understanding what the REAL local problems are in relation to the illegal alien issue, and having compassion for the victims.
This sort of thing is inevitable in the scenario of A) widespread public discontent, and B) nearly all the advocates on "our" side being volunteers. We are so busy playing catch up trying to deal with our own community issues it is hard to coordinate anything with anyone else, much less take a proactive stance on separating the wheat from the chaff.
It's pretty amazing our Northern VA "loose alliance" of Help Save Herndon, Help Save Manassas and Help Save Loudoun have been so relatively successful in building public support and accomplishing things in such a short time.
As evidenced by the meeting last night, without some degree of thoughtful oversight any group forming to deal with the illegal alien problem can easily revert to losing focus and flailing about. It's a shame this should happen in Virginia Beach because they really have had some serious problems down there. Let's hope at some point someone steps up to form an effective citizens' advocacy group in the area.
UPDATE: More coverage at VB Dems.
We have to encourage this sort of thing because it keeps them off the streets. This leaves the streets for those of us who are old enough to appreciate them.
The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors voted 9-0 in favor of a resolution which states the Board's opposition to illegal immigration into the county, and directs county staff to investigate the extent to which illegal aliens use county services, and how much this costs the taxpayers.
The resolution goes one step further than that passed in Manassas last week. Supervisor Jim Burton had initially offered a substitute motion to delay consideration of the resolution so it could be examined further, including into how a provision might be added to find ways to punish employers who hire illegal workers. The substitute was defeated, but Supervisors Scott York and Lori Waters drafted an amendment to the resolution instructing the staff and attorney to also investigate means to crack down on employers who game the system.
The resolution also included a provision that "strongly encouraged" the Sheriff's Office to enter into a 287(g) Immigration and Customs Enforcement training agreement with the Department of Homeland Security - however, it was revealed almost as an aside that the Sheriff's Office had already sent the request to ICE in the past several days.
The supervisors were, to a person, statesmanlike in their reasoning for supporting the resolution. (We hope to have transcripts of some of the remarks along with the text of the resolution here later tonight).
The investigations by county staff will involve all of the areas where services are provided to illegal aliens - and I believe the reports regarding the amounts spent on ESOL instruction alone will be of great interest to the citizens of the county.
Because of the valuable information which will now be brought to daylight and especially the clear support for proactive immigration enforcement across the ideological divides usually attributed to this Board, this vote represents a watershed moment in Loudoun County history.
Congratulations to all of the Supervisors - they each deserve thanks and praise from every citizen of the county.
The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors voted to interject into today's agenda consideration of the "Resolution Reaffirming County Policy With Respect To Compliance With Federal Law And Issue Directives Incident To Such Reaffirmation To Loudoun County Staff."
Sterling Supervisor Eugene Delgaudio, one of the resolution's six sponsors, held a press conference this morning prior to the session in which he stated "we need help" and rattled off a list of ways illegal aliens are unjustifiably being subsidized by Loudoun County taxpayers.
(He did not expand the explanation to include the corporations, and foreign government officials and oligarchs also being subsidized by county taxpayers, but that is a discussion for another day).
The Board voted unanimously this morning to send a letter to the town of Herndon and Fairfax County expressing (to paraphrase) this Board's opposition to the continued operation of the Herndon Day Labor Center as a service for illegal aliens. Text of the letter should be available tomorrow.
Sheriff Candidate Greg Ahlemann, Leesburg Council Member Ken Reid, and I spoke in favor of the Resolution.
Because the letter to Herndon passed unanimously and the Resolution already has six sponsors, I'm cautiously optimistic the latter will pass by a large margin if not unanimously.
The sponsors of the Resolution which will be considered in the next hour are: Mick Staton, Eugene Delgaudio, Bruce Tulloch, Steve Snow, Jim Clem and Lori Waters.
The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors will likely see a resolution similar to that passed in Prince William County last week interjected into tomorrow's Board meeting agenda.
The gist of the resolution will be to emphasize that taxpayer-funded government benefits not mandated otherwise by federal law should be restricted to legal residents of the county.
Vice Chair and Potomac District Supervisor Bruce Tulloch said the resolution will affirm that the beneficiaries of local government benefits should be the citizens who paid for the benefits.
It is not exactly a controversial stand for the Board to take, because the citizens of Loudoun should support the proposal by a wide margin, and I expect the resolution to pass by a wide margin. Thanks to Supervisors Tulloch, Delgaudio and Staton for introducing this proposal.
The government and society in Mexico is corrupt from the cop on the beat up to their leading official in the War on Drugs and members of the Mexican legislature. It is the migrant economy that keeps a lid on the unrest in Mexico and allows the kleptocracy to continue. Mexicans outside of the capital have to pay more for potable water, electricity and gasoline than we in the USA do. Considering the income levels, this is not only an unsustainable situation, but gouging of the poor.
Without the cash flow from the north, Mexico might see some unrest leading to reform. Currently, the status quo is enforced by our policy with respect to migrant labor. If we wish to see a reduction in corruption in Mexico and here, then we must have a policy that changes the status quo. Securing our borders would upset this status quo.
I heard a fascinating sermon on the Fourth Commandment yesterday.
For the heathen in our midst, the Fourth Commandment is in Exodus 20, verses 8-11:
8 Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. 11 For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
It has now been found that we are, if you will, designed to rest on the seventh day. Not just we, as in humans, but we as in living beings. According to recent research in chronobiology, a seven-day cycle has been observed in creatures, both plant and animal, all the way down to amoeba. We are even commanded to rest our cattle on the seventh day.
And thus God commanded us to rest on the seventh day, because it is good for us to do so.
"The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath...." (Mark 2:27)
I got nuthin' of substance thus yet, so forgive the breeziness of what follows, but my far more disciplined and productive wife has a recap here. I hope it was some consolation for her that we spent much of the social time demonstrating our non-political sides.
Jim and Brian of Bearing Drift have some notes. (Scroll down). Jim is a prince for all the work he put into this great conference.
Jay of VV has a nice wrap up. After learning the details, I can say Jay's palatial estate in the boondocks is the blogger-dwelling I most want to visit.
Kat of CatHouse Chat also has a good recap. Kat shares some of my hard-edged interests and concerns, so it was pleasantly surprising to discover she is nothing like me, but actually quite friendly.
The Whacked crew seem to have the only photo coverage - good work! (Scroll down). From my initial impression of their collective personalities, I had the idea that must be among the Best Places to Work in the blogosphere.
In reality, though, I'm sure it's more like a sweatshop. That's how it always is.
There seem to have been some controversies at the event, which I managed to miss, either as a result of socializing or daydreaming, so I apologize in advance for the lack of juicy tidbits here.
I can say the whole brouhaha about "liberal" bloggers staying home turned out to be quite the non-issue because the several liberals who attended represented the species extraordinarily well.
Whackjob himself is a frickin' nut and one of the funniest people I've ever met - so, frankly, there simply may not have been sufficient time for many more liberals because we were all so enthralled by the Greg-meister's routine.
And speaking of funny, Johnny Camacho - you know, the 17-year old guy running for county supervisor, and Kenton - the 16-year old whose traffic had it's biggest spike during the run up to the 2005 elections - have this deadpan hilarious schtick going which someone seriously should make a film about. I am most encouraged by these fine gentlemen being liberals now because in order to eventually say "I used to be a liberal" one really should have been a liberal - and they now have that part of the life-puzzle completed.
Vivian Paige is treat to talk with and such a decent person she reminds you the whole "liberal"-"conservative" polarity is a false or semi-useless construct when it comes to actual, well, people sharing views.
Along the same lines, Dan of VB Dems is another among many "liberals" who shares far more of my own beliefs than many of my fellow "conservatives." Disenchantment with the Parties-that-be being chief among these. Those of us who suffered through the Ross Perot implosion share a special kinship.
Switching to the other side of the ideological spectrum ... Jim Bowden was one of the main people I wanted to meet and I was privileged to spend over an hour talking with him. Some good counsel came over the bridge. On top of that, I bought a copy of his book which I encourage all of you to do as well.
Kilo has the enthusiasm thing down pat.
I'm Not Emeril is, appropriately, secretive with his recipes. On the other hand, he is a force of nature, so he has that going for him, which is nice.
I met a number of other great folks for whom I do not have links at the ready. (Sorry!) It was great to meet all of you.
Special thanks to the incredible Christopher Newport University people for allowing us to have the conference in their facility. It was top notch in every respect and a huge contribution to the Virginia blogosphere.
Blogs United will be a going concern, apparently, following the overall success of this event. I encourage Virginia bloggers of every stripe to attend the next one. It was a really good time.
"Who else is going to pave the roads here?" Adrian asked, cracking up with laughter. "An American? Ha!"
Thanks to LI and Jay for highlighting today's Post article - which I bet has smoke coming out of ears throughout the state ... from the heads of Virginia government agencies and Latino-advocacy organizations alike.
The resolution's effect on Hispanic communities has stretched well beyond Prince William.
"They're talking about this in Jefferson County, in Clarke, all the way to West Virginia," Adrian Escobar said in Spanish, sipping from a Big Gulp cup outside a pupusa kiosk on Route 1. He and his brother Antonio dashed across the border from Mexico nearly 15 years ago and have been in the United States illegally since. They live in Winchester and make $17 an hour as flagmen for a Virginia Department of Transportation subcontractor.
The Escobar brothers shrugged at all the fretting they'd been hearing from other Hispanics last week, including workers who commute to Prince William to do its grunt work. "Who else is going to pave the roads here?" Adrian asked, cracking up with laughter. "An American? Ha!"
Antonio said he wasn't fazed. "If you're afraid, they'll just intimidate you more," he said. Besides, he added, the brothers have a plan in case Prince William police and immigration officials send them home for a "free vacation" to their father's farm in Guanajuato.
"We'll be right back here in a month," Antonio said
Someone probably should have given Adrian the memo about how the "jobs Americans won't do" line is supposed to be delivered, and how the May 2006 in-your-face attitude worked out for the pro-illegal movement.
Now, how does everyone feel about getting some tough ordinances about legal hiring and ICE participation passed here in Loudoun?
I thought so.
It does seem like Judicial Watch might take an interest in this fascinating Commonwealth of Virginia policy on subcontractors.
Stay tuned for more details on the Free Vacations Program.
I'm at the Blogs United conference in Newport News for the weekend.
- Don't move to Newport News unless you really enjoy sitting in your car.
- Most bloggers are young enough to be my offspring, technically.
- Of the ones who are not, most hold their liquor extremely well.
I may not have the opportunity to actually "blog" this event, on account of basic laziness, but those delightful young men of Daily Whackjob are dutifully on the task so I encourage you to visit over there.
I just got this from a friend....
Recently large demonstrations have taken place across the country protesting the fact that Congress is finally addressing the issue of illegal immigration.
Certain people are angry that the US might protect its own borders, might make it harder to sneak into this country and, once here, to stay indefinitely.
Let me see if I correctly understand the thinking behind these protests. Let's say I break into your house. Let's say that when you discover me in your house, you insist that I leave.
But I say, "I've made all the beds and washed the dishes and did the laundry and swept the floors. I've done all the things you don't like to do. I'm hard-working and honest except for when I broke into your house).
According to the protesters:
"You are required to let me stay in your house. You are required to add me to your family's insurance plan. You are required to educate my kids. You are required to provide other benefits to me and to my family (my husband will do all of your yard work because he is also hard-working and honest, except for that breaking in part).
"If you try to call the police or force me out, I will call my friends who will picket your house carrying signs that proclaim my RIGHT to be there.
"It's only fair, after all, because you have a nicer house than I do, and I'm just trying to better myself. I'm a hard-working and honest, person, except for well, you know, I did break into your house. And what a deal it is for me!!!
"I live in your house, contributing only a fraction of the cost of my keep, and there is nothing you can do about it without being accused of cold, uncaring, selfish, prejudiced, and bigoted behavior.
"Oh yeah, I DEMAND that you learn MY LANGUAGE so you can communicate with me."
Sounds like the tightening of border security is working! You know how you can tell? Just count the dead bodies!
This was originally going to be a response to The Stay Puft Marshmallow Man (hereafter "puffy" or "puffalump"), but I thought the topic deserved it's own post. The first post is here.
Puffalump remarked that:
it's like this: Western economies have pretty much outgrown manufacturing. Once upon a time %70 of the population was in agriculture, now it's %2. We used to have big textile factories in the 1800s, then we moved into production of more tech-driven machinery like cars. Now we produce ideas, other countries build the stuff (for example: http://www.microsoft.com/surface/
this is a typical progression of a capitalist economy. Europe, Japan also moved from ag. to text. to manufac. to tech.
as more countries move up the ladder, others move in to fill the gap they leave and along the way, and the world becomes more integrated.
You want a revolution? this is a revolution! China is racing down the trail we helped blaze. What are we going to do about it; step up and move boldly into the uncharted waters of the future, or freak out and try to reverse the flow of history?
He meant that the manufacturing jobs are declining -- our actual manufacturing output is increasing. The problem is that our productivity is outpacing our production, so jobs are lost.
As all of you know, I am no fan of tax increases. In this case, well, I still don't.
Here's the deal. Private Equity Fund managers take a certain percentage of the profits, say 20%, leaving 80% for the investors. That's right, the manager need not have any of his own money in the fund. Despite having none of his own money in the fund, his 20% is taxed as "capital gains," rather than as ordinary income. That, to me, is ridiculous.
The Private Equity Council, a recently formed industry lobbying group, opposes any change to the taxation of carried interest. General partners not only contribute time and energy to managing a fund's assets but are required to mitigate losses so that investors get back the capital they put in, according to Council spokesman Robert Stewart. "They take entrepreneurial risk. (Carried interest) is not akin to getting a fee for service." He calls it a profit share.
What a load. I doubt that these managers take money out of their own pockets and give it to the investors if there is a loss. If they do, fine, they can deduct it from their ordinary income.
One potential consequence of raising the tax on carried interest is the risk of lower returns, Stewart said, noting that managers might be less willing to take risks with investments if they know their tax bill will be higher.
It just keeps getting better. "I'm not going to make more money, because 40% will be taken in tax instead of 20%." I'm making up the tax rates, but you get the idea.
Another consequence is that partnerships may find ways around any new regulations.
Translation: "Let's not do the right thing, because some people will find a way to avoid it."
People exploit loopholes in the tax laws all the time, but these people don't advocate scrapping the income tax completely. (I do, but that's another story.)
Sorry, folks, but when I get a bonus, it's taxed as ordinary income. Performance bonuses of major-league players and coaches are taxed as ordinary income. These are no different.
So while I am not supporting a tax increase per se, but I do support changing the classification of this income from "capital gains" to "ordinary income."
This is the video the pro-illegal alien advocates don't want you to see.
Because of the state's tough immigration enforcement law that just went into effect July 1, illegal aliens in Georgia are leaving in droves - some returning to Mexico, some going to other states.
If we in Virginia can take action at the local and state level to convince the illegals that this may not be the ideal place to come to, more will return to Mexico or other home countries, and thus will begin the process of advocating for reforms there. Which is what should have been happening in the first place and which the corrupt people running those countries are extremely grateful not to have had to deal with.
The following should be required viewing for every current or prospective office holder at every level of government.
As you may have heard, Judy Feder, who failed in her bid to unseat Congressman Frank Wolf last year, and who is generally recognized as "nice, in a weird sort of way," has been on a fundraising tear lately, reportedly raising over $110,000 in a month.
So Frank Wolf has his work cut out for him, right?
Actually, no, not quite yet.
Because, as a shadowy yet frequently reliable informant just told me, Judy has got HER work cut out for her, first.
At the recent Loudoun County Democratic Committee meeting, Judy apparently "got into it" with a gentleman named David Borne (that spelling might be off) from Leesburg, who announced that he, also, is planning to challenge for the 10th District seat. He appears to be well-funded and turns out to have the apparent support of LCDC Chair Thom Beres.
Mr. Borne is said to have testified after September 11 in support of the Air Line Pilots Association request that pilots be allowed to carry firearms in the cockpit.
On a related note, Vern McKinley, Frank Wolf's Republican primary challenger, is also rumored to be well-known in 2nd Amendment circles, which means both Feder and Wolf will have primary challenges from the right and the gun issue could be part of the arsenal against each.
This came to mind just before Independence Day and I was really feeling good about it. Then the computer went down for a week. Now I read a blog that elicited much comment and debate about God, liberals, conservatives, democrates, republicans, even the idiosyncrasies of our founding fathers. Although viewpoints are a wonderful thing and that free speech is one of our must cherished laws, I saw much disconnect and no commonality. Then I read a piece today from Ronald Maxwell and I felt good again. I think our commonality is civic duty.
I heard this term frequently growing up in the 50's and 60's but at the end of the 60's it seemed to die out. I would get it from scouting, teachers, parents, policemen, firemen, politicians; you name it. Now I never questioned my civic duty as it was told to me because common sense has always been my motivation (with God's help, of course). But recently I wondered why I don't here it anymore and I think it is because people don't understand what it is or how to perform it. If you don't know what your civic duty is, well, I'm going to tell you.
Pr. William Passes Resolution Targeting Illegal Immigration
As we can see from today's headline in the Washington Post, local communities are compelled to do the work the Federal Government is not doing and will not do - the defense of America and the protection of its citizens.
Virginia is in the process of regaining its sovereignty and the rule of law, city by city, county by county. Local and county sheriffs who will not enforce existing law and state legislators who seek to add to the tax burden of law abiding citizens by providing unending financial support to illegal aliens are being voted out of office. A passel of RINOs was just defeated in Republican primaries across the state. More will fall in the upcoming general election.
Citizens of the Old Dominion state are reclaiming their land, their culture, their language and their society. Virginia, as the entire country, was settled over the centuries through lawful, regulated and legal immigration. Virginians are coming together and saying with an increasing conviction and determination - "If you got here illegally - keep moving!"
The Department of Homeland Security is guilty of a dangerous dereliction of duty. Apart from a few well publicized raids in the weeks preceding the recently defeated Bush-Kennedy amnesty bill (after which most of those apprehended were set free), it has done virtually nothing about interior enforcement of our immigration laws. By the arrest, conviction and imprisonment of agents Ramos and Compean, the U.S. Border Patrol, under-manned and under-funded, has been sent a chilling message by the Bush controlled district attorney in Texas. That message, "Look the other way." Because that is the official policy of this administration, Look the Other Way!
The citizens of Virginia, proud descendants and heirs to Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, James Madison, James Monroe, John Marshall, Stonewall Jackson and Robert E. Lee are not looking the other way!
Intransigent and unresponsive government officials, elected and unelected, who are somehow under the impression that they can lord it over the free citizens of Virginia as if they were inheritors of the divine right of kings are in for a rude awakening. The next thing they will face is a tax revolt.
The billions of dollars being spent on servicing the illegal alien population is collected from and paid by the American taxpayer. If local governments at the city and county and state level refuse to obey the law, if local and county sheriffs and police chiefs refuse to enforce the law on the illegal alien population - then Virginians may simply decide to withhold the payment of taxes to these government entities. If they complain about not having enough jail cells or of not having enough officers to detain the illegals in our community, let's see if they can round up the tens of thousands of citizens who will refuse to pay any more taxes. Will they confiscate their property, will they fine them, will they cart them away in hand-cuffs and take them away to prison?
These politicians and so-called public servants need a wake-up call - they are supposed to be serving the interests of the American citizens who elected them, not non-citizen, alien populations from foreign countries who broke the law to get here and who brazenly continue to break the law every day by working here illegally. These politicians were not elected to keep raising the taxes of Virginia citizens to pander to the interests of foreign intruders. They were not elected to bankrupt their neighbors, overwhelm their school systems and put impossible pressures on their medical systems.
Virginia politicians have a very short time to do the right thing by their constituents and fellow citizens. If not, they will soon face exactly the same thing the British Monarchy faced in 1775 - a tax revolt. Virginians are not meek sheep to be led incrementally to their own slaughter. They are a free people with free will who are standing up for their birthright and their liberty!
The supervisors of Prince William County could and should have stuck to their guns by supporting the original proposals by John T. Stirrup Jr. In any case, they took courageous, commendable and long overdue action in the ordinances they passed. It's a start. Other communities will follow their lead. There is hope for Virginia - we are not yet a conquered people!
Ronald F. Maxwell
What about a tax revolt in every jurisdiction where public officials do not follow the will of the citizens on this issue? The influx of illegal aliens, over the past five years - since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 2001 - is forcing our hand.
The Prince William County Board of Supervisors has passed John Stirrup's immigration enforcement resolution unanimously!
Some notes from a friend on the scene:
- There is a massive demonstration going on right now outside the government building, what appears to be a huge crowd of illegal aliens and their advocates. Many are holding signs, written in English, saying things like "America is a migrant country" and "We just want to feed our families." There is a big pile of English-language signs on the ground, apparently brought by the organizers. From the phone conversation I could hear loud chanting and yelling in Spanish.
- During the hearing, the board chair had asked there be no booing, hissing or clapping. A large crowd of illegal aliens had come into the anteroom - packed all the way up the staircases and along the balcony - who did not understand and proceeded to boo, hiss and cheer throughout the hearing, until a Latino reporter went out and explained to them in Spanish they were not supposed to be doing that.
- One person testifying in support of the resolution nodded toward the crowd of illegals outside and said something to the effect: "Look outside at the other room: That is where we are headed, to become a third world country."
- One of the two Democrats on the board said he took exception to reports in the press that the two of them were against the resolution, and said "I have always been against illegal immigration and would support deporting them back to their own countries."
- There were a couple last minute revisions to the resolution, made so it did not make any legislative changes which would have required a longer period before the resolution could have been voted on. One of the changes was to remove the "writ of mandamus" provision which would challenge existing U.S. law.
- A board member indicated the County had considered including a provision to deny free education to the children of illegal aliens - a direct challenge to the 1982 Supreme Court decision in Plyler v Doe, that all children have a constitutional right to a public education. The board member said the time is ripe to challenge this narrowly-decided case and that Prince William County would be inclined to do this in the future.
- A board member also stated this resolution should serve as a wake up call to surrounding jurisdictions to follow suit.
UPDATE: The illegals appeared to have been bused in (I wonder if they were paid). Here's who most likely provided the signs they were carrying:
Teresita Jacinto, of the Woodbridge Workers Committee, which works with day laborers in the county, helped organize the large contingent of Latinos who showed up at the meeting.
Observation: I bet no one had to bus in the people supporting the resolution.
Heh. This is a movement I can support.
We bought a "ceramic heater" from Target, where everything except the employees and customers is produced in Chinese factories, and it lasted about a week before it stopped heating and started whistling, which I assume was the preliminary to vaporization.
And yes, I will buy the t-shirt.
In just about an hour the Prince William County Board of Supervisors will hold a public hearing on Supervisor John Stirrup's resolution which instructs law enforcement and basically ALL government agencies to begin enforcing existing state and federal laws immediately - on pain of "writ of mandamus to compel any non-cooperating agency to comply with such reporting laws."
The local police chief has already gotten the message.
The resolution will likely be voted on during the 2:00 pm meeting. Whether it passes or not, it will set in motion a series of similar efforts elsewhere in the state.
Check back for updates.
UPDATE: 1:45 pm. A friend got one of the last seats in the Board chamber and said the anteroom is filling up with people in folding chairs. The parking lot is packed. At least one film/news crew is present. There are no actual protests going on, but reportedly a group of what appear to be migrant workers under a tree outside the building and a number of "concerned Hispanics" inside. The latter could be anyone, of course, but my friend's take is they are there to oppose the resolution.
UPDATE II: I hear Help Save Manassas was signing up a boatload of new members before the hearing.
UPDATE III: Ted reports:
I listened to a lot of it and it sounded like the pro-illegals had slightly more speakers.
They of course resorted to calling proponents of the resolution racists; saying that proponents wanted to recreate apartheid South Africa; this is an "un-Godlike" resolution; anyone who votes for this should be ashamed; migrant workers were the ones who built this country over the last 100 years because they were the only ones who would do the dirty work etc.
As usual, no facts accompanied by the typical rants we get from our friends on the Left.
Can a homosexual change his orientation?
I'm sure the homosexuals, socialists, and atheists will say, "No, it's impossible; he's either lying, or was never really homosexual."
"Jesus replied, 'What is impossible with men is possible with God.'" (Luke 18:27)
While Eileen at VB Dems has discovered some supposed nefariousness with our Attorney General's immigration enforcement initiatives (and rediscovered her special love for Ken Stolle in the process), today's RTD contains this reassuring column from Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling:
While Congress fails to act, states are forced to do what we can to address the issue on the state level. While the primary responsibility for immigration rests with the federal government, there are things we can do in Virginia to help address this problem.
We can require the governor to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE) to allow state and local law-enforcement agencies to enforce civil immigration laws. This would enable our state and local police to arrest and detain illegals when they encounter them, rather than releasing them.
We can make sure that illegals in Virginia are not receiving the benefits of citizenship. While we have already acted to take most of these benefits away, we still allow the children of illegal immigrants living in Virginia to pay in-state tuition at our colleges and universities. That should be stopped.
And finally, we can pass our own laws holding Virginia employers accountable for knowingly hiring illegal workers or knowingly failing to confirm their immigration status prior to hiring them.
Read all of that. Local and state legislation will be the next major front in the culture war during the next several months.
The comic and tragic diverge on the point of whether the subject is I or thou.
"Barron's" (July 2, 2007, page 39) reports the existence of BerkShares, paper money printed and issued in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts. The idea is to boost the local economy by keeping money in the local economy. It is currently accepted at some 280 local businesses.
(I'd like to post a link to the article, but reading the article online requires a subscription, and getting them to post an article that we can link to costs on the order of $500 per month.)
Never mind the questionable benefit this currency will give to the local economy. My copy of the United States Constitution reads, "No State shall... make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts...." (Article I, Section 10)
Now, I realize that the "Berserkshires" are not a state, but several Supreme Court rulings have made it clear that what applies to the states also applies to subdivisions of the states.
Is this the first step to secession?
I recently saw on TooConservative a comment on the Republican Party not responding well to what the people want. The lament was over politicians not paying attention to the citizens. While I understand the reasoning for that view (the immigration fiasco, the developer/taxpayer conflict, and such) I also am disheartened by the blatant liberalism of the post. Huh? TooConservative is posting liberalism? From my point of view, yes.
Did anyone else see this article in the Daily Press? It's a pretty heavy swipe at McDonnell's recently unveiled regulation initiative:
Go at it with a broad bush, as McDonnell apparently prefers, and you get slogans, bumper stickers, talk show one-liners and a wide-open back door for assorted players to slip in and unburden themselves of "unnecessary regulation."
Rust further seasons his comments with references to moving mountains, "reclaiming" government and even Paris Hilton. It reads like a sales piece, a product brochure.
And that increasingly looks like the sum of what's going on here. Rust's zingers suggest an agenda more aligned with McDonnell's prospects in the 2009 governor's race than any thoughtful attempt to examine Virginia's regulatory standards.
Not sure what to make of it, but I am curious to learn more about the substance of the AG's proposal. This fits very well into the context of Mason Conservative's post a few days back discussing the AG's advantage in using his office to posture for 2009 (and the corresponding advantage of the LG in that he has more freedom/time to develop forward looking proposals such as his 100 Ideas for Virginia initiative).
It's going to be an interesting time in 2009. In the meantime, I hope McDonnell's proposal is in fact grounded in substance and meaningful reform and not just political posturing for the primary and general election.
But Arizona's is the one all of our state legislators should be looking at. I'll link to the final bill once it is posted. For now -
Now that the beast is seemingly dead, the tar has been allowed to cool and the pitchforks hung back neatly in the barn, many are ruminating: What next?
Notorious illegal alien Elvira Arellano is threatening immediate, widespread transgression of U.S. immigration law.
(In related news, notorious duck Chester L. Mallard is threatening to land in a river and paddle around, occasionally quacking.)
La Raza Newspaper's Blog reports:
Arellano, who has remained in a Northwest Side church since August 15 to avoid an order of deportation, said this would be the deadline the government will have to "revive and pass a comprehensive immigration reform."
Otherwise, pro-immigrant organizers will begin a campaign "aimed at bringing this government and this economy to a halt."
La Raza, in case you were wondering, is a major proponent of "comprehensive" immigration reform - of the pathway-to-citizenship variety - and also strongly opposes allowing local jurisdictions to enforce federal immigration law and file illegal aliens in the National Crime Information Center database.
La Raza is notably better funded than groups on the pro-enforcement side of the issue, and enjoys some pretty sweet financial support from a number of companies you might have heard of before:
The National Council of La Raza (NCLR) recognizes those corporations that have invested in NCLR's long-term strategic efforts with multiyear, multimillion-dollar commitments, including NCLR's Empowering An American Community Campaign.
The Allstate Corporation
Bank of America
The Coca-Cola Company
Ford Motor Company
General Motors Corporation
The PMI Group, Inc.
State Farm Insurance Companies
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
(Interesting and true side note: Just yesterday I was considering trading my Explorer for a Hyundai. This must be fate.)
For more details, check out La Raza's 990 return from 2005: Page 30 is an eye-opener.
And whereas everyone I know involved with this issue is a volunteer, squeezing in time between work and personal life to advocate to the public and local and federal officials, those La Raza folks are doing really well - I mean, some major buckage. Check out pages 7 and 23.
Anyways, despite all the money and corporate and U.S. government funding on her side, I think Senora Arellano is misreading the tea leaves.
I think this type of thing is far more likely to be the kind of next immediate action you will see happening around our nation:
David Ritcheson, the victim of a horrible crime, has committed suicide.
He was clearly the victim of a hate crime:
Ritcheson's death comes less than three months after he testified before Congress about how two teens nearly killed him on April 23, 2006 by repeatedly kicking a patio umbrella stand into his rectum while shouting "white power!"
Tuck and Turner dragged Ritcheson, who was Hispanic, into the backyard, where they taunted him with racial slurs, punched and kicked him in the head and burned him 17 times with cigarettes. They tried to carve a swastika into his chest.
His attackers poured bleach on his face and body and left him for dead. No one called for an ambulance until well after daybreak.
The former Klein Collins High School running back and freshman homecoming prince spent three months and eight days in the hospital and endured more than 30 surgeries.
Ritcheson testified for new "Hate Crimes" legislation:
"I appear before you as a survivor," Ritcheson told members of a House Judiciary subcommittee April 17. "I am here before you today asking that our government take the lead in deterring individuals like those who attacked me from committing unthinkable and violent crimes against others because of where they are from, the color of their skin, the God they worship, the person they love, or the way they look, talk or act."
But the article states that, "A skinhead named David Tuck, 19, was sentenced to life in prison for his part in the attack. Keith Turner, 18, received a 90-year sentence."
What more could be done? If such sentences, without new hate crimes legislation, does not deter such beasts, what will?
Below is a comment from reader Jenny Perry, a self-described liberal Democrat who understands that facilitating the influx of illegal aliens into this nation is a crime against American workers and all citizens.
The entire debate over illegal immigration has been conducted in a national fog. The recent dispute over an outrageously bad Senate bill which none of the senators supporting it had apparently read was a perfect example of this: It granted immediate legal status to tens of millions of illegal aliens - yet some senators on both sides of the aisle continued to speak of "triggers" which supposedly would have required stepped-up enforcement before any legalization could take place. The CSPAN video archive of Senate testimony the week of May 21 should serve as evidence to have many senators charged with incompetance, if not treason.
We are going to proceed to cut through the fog from this point forward. Allow me to slap you in the face, "liberals" and "conservatives," and point out the labels have become worn and useless. The illegal alien problem has brought this confusion to the forefront. There is nothing "conservative" or "liberal" about supporting corporate profiteers and corrupt public officials who are benefiting from an influx of illegal workers and subsidizing oligarchs in Mexico and Latin America.
Take a moment to read this letter, and then take a moment to think about the fact that our ideological categories are in need of an overhaul.
I am a liberal democrat, my entire family are liberal democrats. We live in the state of RI, a very liberal dem state, however, the majority of my fellow liberal dems are against amnesty (omg, yes I said amnesty and I say illegal alien too).
We recognize that it is an attempt to pit one group of poor people against another, by the US Chamber of Commerce.. to use them as the final nail in the coffin of the American wage standard and workplace protections. We recognize that our schools, our hospitals, are overburdened. Social welfare programs and Social Security and Medicare are being drained dry by the illegal alien hordes that have come here.
We recognize that our job base is declining ever more rapidly every year, and that we have a serious, long term, un and under employment problem in the US. We do not have anything even approaching "full employment", in fact, the 4.75% unemployment numbers are a lie. We know that once someone falls off the unemployment rolls after 26 weeks, they slip between the cracks. Too many others are fighting desperately to keep their heads afloat, working three or more part time minimum wage jobs. They have less time to raise their children as well, which doesn't help deal with the problems that brings about.
What I see are democratic senators and representatives who have bought into this globalization scheme, and are turning a blind eye towards it's attempt to base it on third world standards.