Nov 25 2008

Extreme Positions Create Extreme Backlashes

Published by at 8:23 am under All General Discussions,Illegal Immigration

Illegal immigration is an issue I find myself just disgusted with. On the far right we have the “deport them now” crowd who call anything less ‘amnesty’. Whether its deportation by rounding up illegals and dumping all 20+ million over the border or it is through economic blackmail, these folks took the only sane option of positive and conservative immigration reform and tanked it twice: once under the GOP led Congress and once under the Dem led Congress.

Their promise was we didn’t need any new laws to fix the problem. It was a out and out lie of course. The far right zealots just did not want to deal with those long term illegals who had set up roots here over many years to get off with hefty fines and paying back taxes with interest (which was a more than reasonable punishment for a misdemeanor paper filing crime). They claimed there were problems at the border, but of course the border has nothing to do with ‘amnesty’. They claimed all sorts of irrelevant imperfections (like Congress ever produces perfection??). So they tanked the reasonable compromise and destroyed the GOP in the process. It was at this time, on this subject, the nativist went crazy and started to really attack moderate conservatives in viscous ways. It was, as I said, disgusting.

But the far left is no better, and in fact probably worse. They want to just give everyone here US Citizenship so they can refill their base with new voters. They don’t care how big a drain these non-tax paying people drain our government and limit services that should be going to tax paying residents (including legal immigrants). They want to break laws so they can control the legislature. It would have been a huge defeat for the left if the comprehensive immigration bill had passed. It would be the end of real ‘amnesty’, where people get short cuts to US Citizenship for illegal acts.

As a reminder here is what would have been in place if the far right had not gone crazy in their extremism:

  1. All illegal aliens would have to register with the government, use a tamper proof ID (not some drivers license) and be limited to 2 three-year stints as a migrant worker.
  2. The borders would be strengthened (they have been).
  3. No one caught entering illegally would be allowed in, they would be turned back (Bush instituted this policy which made last year the last year any illegal entrant who was caught at the border could still enter).
  4. Stiff fines and clear responsibilities on companies and individuals who hired migrant workers to play by the rules and collect taxes.
  5. A ‘start over’ period for illegal immigrants here for more than 2-3 years (no new arrivals would qualify) who had to pass a criminal background check, pay a fine and all back taxes, use the immigrant worker ID and tracking process before they were allowed to stay and begin their time towards US citizenship if they so desired. EIther that or they had the same 6 years before they would have to leave.
  6. One strike and your out rule: any immigrant (legal or illegal – this is very important) who committed a felony or violent crime would be banned from this country forever. Where they would serve time was being debated, but the fact is anyone who violated our trust in such a manner would be booted, never to come back. 

Of course none of these common sense steps forward are reality today. None. Instead, as I predicted, the chance for real immigration reform is slipping farther and farther away as the extreme backlash from the far left starts to build – a backlash that was a response to extreme positions from the far right in the first place. Here in my home state of Virginia we are rapidly losing ground on immigration to this liberal backlash:

Virginia, known for some of the nation’s toughest policies on illegal immigration, appears to be abandoning its hard-line approach as state officials consider proposals to help foreign-born residents assimilate, including increasing the number of English classes.

In the coming weeks, the Virginia Commission on Immigration will send Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D) two dozen recommendations, most of which would help immigrants instead of penalizing them.

Those on both sides of the issue say interest in immigration has waned because of the growing economic crisis, a clearer understanding of the state’s limitations on a largely federal issue and backlash at the voting booth.

“I think some reality set in,” said state Sen. John C. Watkins (R-Chesterfield), the group’s chairman.

Recommendations include shortening the Medicaid residency requirements for certain qualified immigrants, offering in-state tuition to immigrants who meet specific criteria and creating an immigration assistance office.

Remember when the far right called the immigration bill a ‘shamnesty’? Well, this is the product of their efforts. They gleefully cheered the demise of the comprehensive immigration bill claiming it would be much better without it. How may conservatives feel like thanking the far right for this result? Not me.

People don’t see the subtleties of history while they are living through it. They react to the ‘now’ – it’s the way our brains our naturally wired. We sample a variety of signals and respond. Our intellect provides us options to step back from this input/react wiring, but at times we forget to switch it full on. The far right became obsessed with silly buzz words like ‘amnesty’ and ‘breaking the law’, as if the government should be allowed to kick you out of house, job and the country for not licensing your vehicle, or keeping it insured.

And in response to their historic failure, we now have the far left in charge and they are trying to find ways to assimilate more aliens. They are trying to find ways to spend more tax payer dollars on people who do not pay taxes! It is a circus of the absurd, clowns to the left and clowns to the right.

I will seriously miss President George Bush, who appears to be the last good leader we will see for sometime. He led on national progress, not for ideology, fame or votes. He found compromises that would move the nation one more step to the right – which is how you do it in democracies. You don’t play dictator and force everyone to conform. I will miss his wisdom, which will be all the more painful given all the reminders of less sane heads that now surround us and lead the national debates.

33 responses so far

33 Responses to “Extreme Positions Create Extreme Backlashes”

  1. MerlinOS2 says:


    I have to respectfully disagree with your opinion.

    The shorter version is

    Amnesty has failed every time it has been tried , but we are so much smarter we can get it right this time.

  2. dave m says:

    Did McCain lose because Conservatives demanded too much
    anti-immigration measures – and other ridiculous formulations.
    I understand that this is a passionate subject for you. But it is not true.
    Immigration arguments didn’t elect “Obama”.

    I remember reading an account of a Kurdish woman talking about the
    chemical weapons attacks that occurred throughout northern Iraq before
    the outbreak of hostilities. She said that long before the concentrations of
    Sarin or VX rose to anything that would cause panic, there was a nice smell, of Spring Onions.

    There were slight warnings in the wind this time too, but
    arguments about immigration have nothing to do with what we are now
    facing. Neither Sarah’s wardrobe nor McCain’s humbleness is to blame.

    On the other hand, the PUMAs thought they were just trying to give Hillary
    the candidacy, which, after all, she won in the popular vote. That too was
    spring onions.

    This thing is still unfolding and have you not grasped it still?
    The man who calls himself Obama is being “reasonable”. Why gee,
    he even gave Hillary a big job.

    The plan never never was for Obama to rule America. That is a stepping
    stone. He said he wants “to change the world”. Did ya all think he
    just meant stepping up foreign aid? Re-distributing taxation a bit more?
    Boy he sure is worried about fixing the economy, isn’t he? Do you
    believe that? You have never heard of Taqiyya?

    IsraelInsider speculates that he is the carefully nurtured son of Malcolm X.
    Berg just says that no way was he born in Hawaii, but just took advantage
    of a lax COLB grant policy shortly after Hawaii was admitted into the USA.

    What is this coordinated suppression of the news about? You think this
    just happened? You think our financial systems just went belly up
    in October?

    Look! It has been known for a long time that the formation of the European
    Union and the adoption of a common currency was just a first step. There
    was to be more. Do you seriously think that the Magic Man will serve
    out his two or four or eight years and just go into retirement? Don’t
    be so stupid. There are bigger plans, at the least the President of the
    United States of Africa, a whole continent living under Sharia Law,
    the birthplace of the promised New Caliphate, to change the balance
    of power. AL-Qaeda understands it and launches misinformation attacks
    against Obama, accusing him of not being true to his father. They
    mean just the opposite. He is being true to his father. Osama distracts
    us to buy t ime for it all to succeed, please, please wake up,
    or maybe Lifetime President of the UN, if “Obama” can, in whatever time
    he has as US President, successfully integrate “the last best hope of
    the free world” under UN domination.

    This could entirely be TIN-FOIL HAT paranoia. Or else it could be
    Spring Onions.

    Don’t sleepwalk into submission.

  3. ivehadit says:

    My intuition tells me this is definitely a grander version of 1939.

    We are under attack from within and without, imho. This last election was BOUGHT, NOT EARNED, imho.

    So, SEND EVERY PENNY YOU HAVE TO DEFEAT MARTIN IN GEORGIA because obama/pelosi/reid have sent all of their’s.

    And I tell you this, if we have to march on Washington, then so be it.

  4. kathie says:

    dave m, with all do respect, I can’t imagine your description happening. There are just too many Americans who are freedom loving, independent loving people who have love of life, liberty and happiness in their DNA. We are not rebel rousers but will be if need be. Obama wanted to get elected, he is smart, but not suicidal. He said a bunch of crap to reel in the voters, but will govern much more moderately. I don’t know this for sure, I don’t know anything for sure about Obama, but to go down the extreme track would not be good for him personally, and his person is his everything.

  5. jimmylewis2007 says:

    Your comments at the end of the article regarding GWB were spot on and greatly appreciated!

    Most people in the US think illegal immigration is a serious problem. A solid majority oppose making it easier for illegal immigrants to become legal workers or citizens. Here are some findings:

    59% say they oppose allowing illegal immigrants to apply for legal temporary worker status. More than six in ten, 62%, say that they oppose making it easier for illegal immigrants to become citizens, according to a Quinnipiac University poll, nine in ten in that poll say they consider immigration to be a serious problem, with 57% of those polled saying it’s extremely and urgently serious.

    Which has left me asking the question (to which I am not expecting a response from either of my Senators from this Frozen Blue State) why has this issue fallen off the radar?

    Jimmy Lewis
    SCS, Michigan

  6. dave m says:

    and I am counting on them Kathie, and I’m counting on ivehadit too.

  7. crosspatch says:

    Amnesty has NOT failed. We have had waves of immigrants showing up on our shores in the past without prior authorization. Right now the fastest growing wave of immigrants to the US are people from India. Though with India’s growing economy, that might turn around soon.

    How do you think Italians got the nickname “WOP”? It means Without Papers. The attitudes expressed toward Hispanic arrivals today are practically identical to the attitudes expressed toward the German, Italian, and Irish waves of immigration in the past.

    The area where I live has a Hispanic population that dates back to before California was US territory. The overwhelming majority of the people who come here are hard working people who go to church on Sunday. Go to a California farm town sometime and see how many men you see in their “Sunday best” white cowboy hat. They are family people.

    The ones who risked everything they had, took crappy jobs, put their kids through school and possibly our armed forces and finally have a shot at being a citizen are the ones I have no problems with. I *want* that kind of people as citizens. Some of those people in my opinion have more right to be here than some people born here. I will take the man who gave two sons to this country, one in the first gulf war and one in the current fight in Iraq over that imbecile hanging out on Market Street hoping for change. There are a lot of “gold star” families among those immigrants. They have put their faith in this country and what it stands for. I do not mind them being citizens one iota.

    If they swim from Cuba they can stay but if they practically walk from Guatemala they can’t? What a double standard!

  8. OLDPUPPYMAX says:

    And here I thought failing to register your vehicle and breaking into someone elses nation were completely different things! It appears to me that you have fallen, hook line and sinker, for the left-wing tripe about illegals–er, excuse me, undocumented workers–only coming to the US in order to work hard, pay their way and make life better for their families. Poor unfortunate, trusting folk, taken advantage of at every turn by corrupt and heartless employers; dragged across a burning desert or packed like sardines in the false bottom of a van by people to whom they have rendered up their life savings…all for the opportunity of laboring 20, 30 and 40 hour days mixing concrete with their bare hands. Well someone should let you know that the “new laws” which were promised (had we radical right wingers not screwed things up) would have been discarded one by one if this disaterous legislation had actually been passed. Some would have been declared unfair, unjust or simply too hard on these poor, confused people. The fence? After much soul searching and Clintonesque lip biting, it would have been decided that a fence simply sent the “wrong signal” to our southern neighbors. Why, ours is a nation of inclusion! A nation in which the hopes and dreams of…well, you get the picture. The point is, it was a scam. The public was being lied to by people like Bush and McCain, just as Clinton lied about his middle class tax cut. Fortunately enough of us saw through it to intimidate the left and its RINO confederates. One thing however is clear. If all of the crazy, “far right zealots” had a conservative candidate to vote for a few weeks ago, Hussein would not be the president elect.

  9. Redteam says:

    very good. I’m personally not willing to give up conservative principles and adopt a liberal agenda, just to get along. I don’t believe Ronald Reagan would have either.

  10. The Macker says:


    That is a rant filled with stereotypes, oversimplifications and lies. There is no way a “nativist” like Tancredo could have won. Folks like you have harmed the GOP by alienating millions of Hispanic citizens that should be part of the GOP.

    You make reasoned debate impossible and hijack the terms “conservative” and “principles.”

  11. Terrye says:


    Ronald Reagan supported amnesty, honest to God amnesty.

  12. Terrye says:

    Over at Hot Air in the headlines there is a link to a piece by Mort Kondracke, where he says that talk show radio hosts like Rush Limbaugh hurt the GOP by getting the base all riled up over the immigration issue. He said that as a result Republicans lost the youth, the moderates and the hispanics and came off as a bunch of troglodytes.

    The truth is the position taken by people like Malkin and Rush has not won one single election for Republicans, but it did weaken a war time Republican president and split the party…not to mention alienate an entire demographic. Bush got 44% of the hispanic vote. In the two elections since then Republicans have not managed half of that. Now the Democrats control both the White House and the Congress and conservatives might well see blanket amnesty passed.

    Way to go guys. Thanks a lot. Now go blame Bush and pretend that going too far to the right did not mess you up,

  13. crosspatch says:

    “The truth is the position taken by people like Malkin and Rush has not won one single election for Republicans”

    Well, I will take exception, sort of. I think Rush is capable of thinking on a little higher level. But people like Malkin, I believe, have hurt the party a LOT more than they have helped it. Same with Mark Levin and Hannity.

    And people DO think Republicans are a bunch of troglodytes. And that is because Republicans insist on pushing social issues instead of focusing on “role of government” issues. I want to hear why free markets are better than managed markets. I want to hear how empowering people to take risk, start businesses and employ people brings up everyone’s standard of living. I do NOT want to hear about building walls, who is for or against abortion, “intelligent design” discussions and all that crap. It makes Republicans look like a bunch of grouchy old farts who hate everybody who isn’t like them.

    People born south of the border aren’t stupid. They can perfectly understand that it is better to have a system where one can succeed and be free to invest their wealth and time and effort where they see fit than a system that gives you everything they think you need but effectively prevents you from ever advancing beyond that by taxing the heck out of you if you do. Socialism is enslaving but it intoxicates you into thinking it is for your own good. It takes away the fear of the future … “they” will see to it that you always have a job and always have medical care. Trouble is you will always be poor, too.

    We need to focus on the basic fundamental differences in what the role of government is. We need to get back to being Democrats and Republicans and not being Liberals and Conservatives because when the game changes from political to social, people start opting out and that is why the number of independents is growing.

  14. GuyFawkes says:

    “And that is because Republicans insist on pushing social issues instead of focusing on “role of government” issues.”

    Interesting point. A similar one was made on the Outside the Beltway blog yesterday, concerning the difference between center-left and center-right blogs:

    “Part of the reason I’m drawn to the center-left blogs, including those cited above, Kevin Drum, Steve Benen, and others despite disagreeing with them while finding it increasingly difficult to find center-right blogs worth my time is that the former are much more likely to get beyond the debates of the 1980 election. There’s almost no serious analysis of health care reform, urban planning, education, and many other issues that regularly crop up on the best lefty blogs on their conservative counterparts. If we read about those issues at all, they’re framed as if Ronald Reagan were still aspiring to high office: Say No to socialism! Abolish the Department of Education! Government IS the problem!”

    I guess part of the inherent problem with being “Conservative” is that you are, by definition, resistant to change. But, when the world changes in drastic ways around you, like it has over the past 28 years in innumerable ways, that leaves you forced to make a decision: adapt, or die out.

  15. Redteam says:

    Terrye, yes he did, with the understanding that the ‘system’ would be fixed and it would NEVER be necessary again.

    As Merlin O2 said above:
    “Amnesty has failed every time it has been tried , but we are so much smarter we can get it right this time.”

    and Mort Kondracke is some kind of ‘expert’ on something?
    As Laura Ingraham said in response: So conservatives are supposed to become liberals so we can all get along?
    I’ll say again, I voted for McCain not because he was a good choice, but because he was a better choice than Obama. He is liberal on several issues, immigration, bailout, amnesty, ANWR, global warming, etc. but conservative on the ones that count. Security.

  16. The Macker says:

    Agree that free markets raise everybody’s standard of living and are an essential element of a conservative and GOP platform.

    But, we can’t sequester social issues as off limits when a substantial number of citizens believe “human rights” are at stake. The role of government must include guaranteeing those rights. For many, that extends to early human life. For others to unwanted “guests.”

    I might add, abortion created the young worker shortage, leading to the immigration problem, impacting the economy. All interrelated.

  17. Redteam says:

    and you do realize that the word ‘troglodytes’ could in some cases be considered racist, don’t you?

  18. Frogg says:

    If you don’t stop people from coming here illegally… will never fix the problem. It will sink in eventually. And, since when is ‘rule of law’ considered an “extreme position”?

  19. crosspatch says:


    Social issues we should be concerned with are things like property rights, etc. I don’t believe the abortion issue is best mandated from a central government in DC. It is too divisive and frankly, the population is too diverse in their culture. Tulsa might agree, San Francisco wouldn’t. I say go federalist on those issues and allow state governments decide what works best in their states.

    We should be about things like getting rid of federal unfunded mandates on the states, for example. If the federal government is going to impose a requirement, the federal government should either pay for it or shut up about it.

    The federal government should be about national infrastructure, national defense, national and international commerce and pretty much butting out of the rest of the stuff. At the same time, states should be allowed more leeway in how they do things. If a state comes up with a successful program, fine, other states can emulate it. But I don’t support this notion of forcing things down people’s throats.

    And we have to deal with the notion that yeah, early human life is important to me. But I have to accept that it isn’t as important to everyone. But in those areas where it is important to most of the people, those people should have a right to protect it and those areas where it isn’t so important should have their laws reflect their values. Over time what is right will win out. I don’t feel a need to have my own personal beliefs forced on other people by force of law. That makes me no better than the mullahs in Iran. I DO support laws that protect people’s right to express their opinions on both sides of the issue.

  20. crosspatch says:

    “If you don’t stop people from coming here illegally… will never fix the problem.”

    Frogg, the only people who come here “illegally” are people who have been told to leave and haven’t or people who have been deported and returned. It is actually not a crime to be here without going through immigration. It is up to a judge to decide at an immigration hearing if you can stay or not.

    There is no punishment on the books, there is no criminal statute that says being here without following regulations is a crime. All it says is that if you have not gone through procedure, you are subject to a hearing and the judge can either allow you to stay or force you to go.

    Now once you have been deported and return THEN you are here illegally.

    People have some silly notion that there is some law against trying to come to the US. There isnt.

    Ronald Reagan made sure of that.