Apr 25 2006

Fly By 04/25/06

*** Update: polls are actually lagging indicators to where the nation is heading. A leading indicator is consumer confidence, which is now at a 4 year high! The summer rebound is coming, barring any disasters ***

To folks new to the site, the ‘Fly By’ post is a way for me to attempt to be brief on a variety of topics in one post. Not a trivial (or successful) feat I may add.

Last January, upon the news of historic record breaking profits in the oil industry, I called for investigations into gas prices because the oil companies had claimed the price hikes we saw post Katrina were needed to repair infrastructure. Since investment into repairs would impact profits, it did not take a rocket scientists to figure out there were lies promulgated as fact. Want to raise your prices? Fine, don’t pretend you are doing it because you need to. Well, the recent round of hikes smells just as fishy. And we do have anti-monopoly laws and laws against price fixing (I don’t want collusion in the government or national, critical industries). So I am glad to see Bush calling for an investigation, and not surprised to see the gas prices magically start dropping all of a sudden.

The term ‘cattle car’ for coach airfares is going to become a reality it seems if you check out Drudge’s site. At 6’1″, 225 lbs I can barely squeeze in as it is. Airbus (EU manufacturer) is taking it a step further – no seats at all. Strapped to the wall and left to dangle, that’s the new option. Does an image of humans being transferred in cattle cars jump to mind? I know this is not the same thing, but the imagery is hard to miss.

Bush came out and put to rest the idea of deporting all illegal immigrants. He said it is not realistic, which is the right answer. If you want to see Reps lose the WH, Senate and House, run pictures every night of families being rounded up, resisting and flanked by friends and neighbors, and thrown out of job, school and home. There’s a winning strategy for a crime which is on the level of not having a valid driving license (license to work, license to drive).

Now, with that said, I support a strong border fence, guest worker program, holding employers accountable and having them pay some of the burden of the program, and the idea of one strike your outte here. The people in this week’s round ups in Florida are just the kind of people who should be deported and barred from ever having the opportunity to work here again:

Federal immigration authorities arrested 183 fugitives and other illegal immigrants in Florida alone last week, the state’s largest roundup in a single week, officials said Monday.

The arrests included people convicted of sex offenses, child abuse, cocaine trafficking and weapons violations. They were originally from 26 countries and most eventually will be deported.

RCP has a must read on what is a leak and what is not from Peter Brooks. Obviously the Mary McCarthy debacle will be a focus of many stories and blogger posts. Hopefully we can keep the media honest and fact based on this one. Or, at a minimum, expose those too lazy or jaded to be professional journalists!

Update: Seems Congress is going to be taking action to toughen laws and arrest powers against leakers of classified information:

If the measure is approved by Congress, the nation’s spy chief would be ordered to consider a plan for revoking the pensions of intelligence agency employees who make unauthorized disclosures. It also would permit security forces at the National Security Agency and the CIA to make warrantless arrests outside the gates of their top-secret campuses.

End Update

If you haven’t done so yet, please check out the Raging RINOs and the Watcher Council’s posts for this week. Lots of really good posts from around the blogosphere in both.

Hopefully more later. Have a great day!

6 responses so far

6 Responses to “Fly By 04/25/06”

  1. retire05 says:

    AJ, investigation of oil companies is as stupid as they come. It is simply pandering to the American taxpayer who wants to know why gas is getting so expensive.
    Since oil companies reap 9 cents from a gallon of gas and the taxes on that same gallon are 65 cents in California, 38 cents in Texas and 68 cents in some areas of New York, perhaps we could have an investigation into what failed social programs this tax money funds. If the pols inside the Beltway were really serious about giving the consumer some relief, they would also manage a way to slaughter the cash cow called gasoline tax and find a way to cut the useless programs that are funded by that tax. But no, we still have those opposed to drilling in Anwar because some moose is horney and those who don’t want windturbin farms off the coast of their precious state because it blocks the view and that is where they sail.

    And perhaps we could have an investigation into what effect the green-peaceniks have had on the building of new refineries and drilling sites. Maybe we could take a poll and see if people would prefer cheaper oil or the protection of the Houston Toad or some damn salamander.

    You already know my stand on illegal immigration. And to compare the breaking of a federal law to that of driving without a license issued by a state is off base. If you are caught driving without a license you are not just warned to go get one and sent on your way. There are penalties for that. But you go ahead and lobby for the legalization of all these people. Perhaps when you learn that it will do nothing but hit you in your wallet even harder, you will have learned the error of your ways.
    Once these people are giving “guest worker” permits, they then become eligible for certain protection. i.e. minimum wage, social benefits, et al. So all the employers who hired these folk because they could pay them less than minimum wage are going to have a whole bunch of people demanding a raise. What will happen then? We will have even more illegals pouring into our nation who will work for less than minimum. So no resolution there.
    Now you have 12 million people who are on the bottom of the food chain (so to speak) of the wage scale and probably unemployed. They are now eligible for food stamps, public housing, AFDC, WIC, utility bill subsidation, and Medicare and Medicaid for their children. Your responsibility for the 12 million just went up per your tax bill. And maybe you won’t mind paying an approimate $2,000 a year to subsidize illegals (who are now here legally) but I do. Not to mention that: a) the majority did not come to become citizens of the U.S. but rather to earn money to send back to Mexico where they can live better on less than they ever can in the U.S. (proof of that is the billions that flow back into Mexico each year by wages earned by illegals in the U.S. and b) that you will continue to see your Social Security benefits statement decrease as these [now legal] residents become eligible for Social Security after working just a few years. You can put lipstick on that amnesty pig but it is still amnesty. It didn’t work in Reagan’s time, it won’t work now.
    What will work: severe punishment for employers who hire illegals (but you are going to have to institute a program of information sharing for employers to be able to check SS numbers); denial of all social services to illegals other than emergency medical care of severe medical problems (as outlined by Barbara Jordan in her report to the Clinton administration). When you take away the incenatives to come here and take away the programs that allow them to stay, you will see mass migration, back to Mexico. Think they can’t get back? Think again. Check out a construction site in Houston during Christmas week. They’re empty.
    So while Vicente Fox crys about the small labor pool and the shortage of workers in Mexico, he still promotes illegal entry into the U.S. Perhaps that is because Fox knows that the illegals in his nation that are from Central America will work for even less than his own people. But hey, if you have to pay a national (Mexican) $10.00 a day and you can get a Honduran to work for $5.00, what’s the problem?

  2. az redneck says:

    Agree with Retired on gas prices, with you on immigration–provided the border gets closed.
    With regard to ‘leak’ legislation, you’re talking about the House. Do you really think the Senate could agree to any of this? Not with their arcane rules!

  3. retire05 says:

    OK, so you close the borders. You still have 12-25 million illegals here. What are you going to do? Tell them they can’t bring their families in even though they are now legally here? And when they lose their jobs because they can now claim minimum wage, are you willing to pay for the social services they have just become entitled to?
    So the bleating hearts in Washington then say “let their familes come. It is cruel not to.” What then? Who will pay for all the new class rooms that will be required? And the public housing because they are on the low end of the wage scale? And the food stamps? That 12 million just jumped to 30 million. See where I am going? Or is you P.C. getting in the way?

  4. AJStrata says:


    We have laws against price fixing. I am not for price controls – never have been. But makret price pressures should be reflected in profit pressures, which is not happening.

    Stop worrying about all the implications of getting the migrant workers legal. Either it is the right thing to do or not. Finding excuses not to do something is trivial. Making things work is the challenge!

    keep commenting, enjoy your views.

  5. retire05 says:

    AJ, all I am saying is that the price of gasoline is a no-risk cash cow for the government. Some states even have a percentage tax on gas, which means the higher the cost of gas, the fatter the cash cow becomes. Where is the accountability there for the money spent?
    Accountability, in my mind, goes both ways.

    Immigration: the implications of making 12 million legal residents are horrendous. And it is NOT right. We can make immigration work, even though the Mexican government is working hard against us. That is the challange.
    I seems obvious to me that you do not live in a border state. Our schools, hospitals and social services are breaking at the seams. What would you say to a retired widow who can no longer afford her property tax (the basis for education revenue in Texas) on her home and is going to have to sell it? When a school district is 50% illegal children, who picks up the tab? The other parents of the other 50% along with residents who no longer have children in school. Why are hospitals in border counties closing? Why are some of the prison systems strained, demanding more and more tax revenue from legal residents to cover the additional cost.
    I realize that you are operating on the assumption that all these people want is a chance at citizenship in the U.S. That is a fallacy.
    But if you knew the many illegals I have met in my state, you would know that their desire is to earn enough to go back to Mexico and live well. That is why they are willing to live 15 to a storage unit, sleeping in sleeping bags or on air mattresses, allowing themselves $7-10 a day to live on. Go to a state park in Texas any weekend and see the number of illegals that pay $3.00 to be able to take a shower. Clothing is bought at garage sales so no tax is collected there. And look at the W-2s of the ones who are not paid under the table. I worked for a minority (Hispanic) contractor who did asbestos abatement. He hired 10 Mexican nationals to do the work on a government contract. All ten had the same El Paso P.O. box address and all ten claimed 10 dependents. Out of the ten, one spoke English and was made foreman. The nine earned $12.00 an hour, the foreman earned $16.00. We learned that they were living out of the company provided pick-up. They took showers at the state park once a week, cost $3.00. When the job was completed after 8 months, all ten W-2s were left in the glove box of the pick-up. Along with the W-2s I found receipts for sleeping bags, air mattresses, one Coleman stove.
    They do not contribute enough into our financial structure to make up for the resources they absorb. The administrator of our local hospital (in a town of 3,000) told me the ER treated 9,000 illegals last year alone and it was struggling to stay open. Who pays for that? You do in higher insurance premiums and higher medical costs.
    All I am saying is that amnesty is not going to work and it is going to create an expense I do not think the American taxpayer is willing to pay.
    We made an exception and legalized illegals during Reagan’s days. It didn’t stop the flow then and it will not stop the flow now.
    There has to be severe consequences for hiring illegals. There has to be a denial of social services. And the 14th Amendment was never designed to legalize the children of people who have no right to be here in the first place. It was designed to cover those who were brought to this nation against their will. And there is a question as to whether the 14th Amendment was legally radified in the first place. The system of anchor babies must end.
    If I break into your home but then do your dishes and clean your house, do you think I should then be rewarded by being able to continue living in your home and having you pick up the tab for the education of my kids, my medical bills and my groceries?

    Thank you for the compliment. Your’s is the first web site I hit each morning, so it is plain I enjoy your blog. I learn a lot from you (especially on the Plame Game) and appreciate your research. I only wish you could see the immigration debate from the view of a Texan who has paid through the nose for the rights of law breakers.

  6. fredriknyman says:


    If the measure is approved by Congress, the nation’s spy chief would be ordered to consider a plan for revoking the pensions of intelligence agency employees who make unauthorized disclosures. It also would permit security forces at the National Security Agency and the CIA to make warrantless arrests outside the gates of their top-secret campuses.

    When you think about it, doesn’t it rather boggle the mind that the DCI and the security guards don’t already have that power?