Thursday, May 31, 2007

Let's not repeat the mistakes of 1986

I sent this to our friends in Washington
(FYI, the White House website has posted a lengthy explanation as to why things are different now than they were in 1986. The title is "Fact Sheet: Border Security and Immigration Reform Agreement Overcomes 1986 Mistakes.")


Messrs. Bush, Obama, Hastert, Tancredo, Sensenbrenner, Reid, Durbin

Re: Immigration legislation

Dear Sirs:

John A. Appleman is credited with saying, “Every time history repeats itself, the price goes up.” One need only compare the 1993 World Trade Center tragedy where six people perished with 9/11 where the number of deaths approached 3,000 to validate his words.

You stand on the verge of repeating the mistakes made in 1986. May I suggest that, despite your good intentions, the current immigration reform proposal will prove to be an expensive mistake.

I predict that we will be successful in carrying out the legalization part of the program. We seem particularly adept at doling out benefits.

But we will fail in the enforcement elements of the program. It will happen like this: In attempting to check the eligibility of all workers, along will come the alphabet soup brigade of the ACLU, NCLR, LULAC, MALDEF…with a lawsuit that declares your new law unconstitutional because it violates civil rights. Some federal judge somewhere will rule in their favor, and it will be years before the matter is resolved.

And given High Court rulings like Plyler v. Doe, Amendment XIV interpretations, and the EMTALA cases, the odds are in favor of dismantling your legislation altogether.

And virtually any applicant requirement or enforcement program contained within your reform package is subject to the scrutiny of these special interest groups…and ultimately subject to nullification by the courts.

When that happens we are left with millions of people granted the right to stay, without any of the controls in force to regulate their presence or prevent future generations from following behind.

Recognizing that Mexico alone raises up one million new young adults each year who need jobs (source: Juergen Gatz NAFTA analysis), the problem of today will grow exponentially tomorrow.

We must not allow this foolish reform plan to move forward. Please vote against it.

ABO vs. Obama - 2004

Back in 2004 I witnessed the old adage, “Things can always get worse.”

Just when I thought the Republican Party in Illinois had hit bottom, they began digging a hole. They were reeling from the Governor George Ryan scandal of selling drivers licenses to fund party activity, followed closely by Ryan’s effort to engineer a legacy for himself by removing the tollbooths. He found no traction with that effort so he commuted all the death sentences in the state. (He finally found something he could do that was outside the checks and balances.)

Now, follow along here because there are a few different Ryan’s in this story, kind of like keeping track of the Johns and the Marys in the New Testatment.

Jack Ryan won the primary election to be the Republican candidate for US Senate in 2004. Peter Fitzgerald would not serve a second term. He was totally frustrated that our elected officials didn’t really want to analyze and fix problems; they wanted to play political games while Rome burned.

It turns out that Jack was not a dull boy after all. His divorce papers became public and they contained some kinky stuff; not at all befitting a family values candidate. So Jack bowed out.

So who do you replace him with after the primary? Logic may suggest the person who came in second. But we don’t do that here in Illinois. The decision defaults to the party bosses to name someone, and they NEVER go with the public’s second choice. It is time for party leaders to exert their influence; take matters into the cloakroom so to speak.

You’ll never find anyone in Washington to admit it, so we’ll have to wait for Karl Rove to publish his tell-all memoirs. But this was a presidential election year and Bush was out to get a record number of Hispanic votes. He began in January 2004 talking about his Guest Worker program for the first time since 9/11. The second place candidate in the Illinois Senate Republican Primary was Jim Oberweis. The message from the White House was that they wanted ABO, Anyone But Oberweis.

You see, Oberweis may have been popular with the voters but he ran TV ads that warned us about the illegal alien problem. He showed pictures of Soldier Field (where the Bears play) and claimed that enough illegals cross the border every week to fill the stadium. That would be 60,000+ per week.

When I saw those ads I thought he was exaggerating. I had never even considered that there was a problem. Sure, I knew some folks snuck across the border, but they kept to themselves. Besides, surely those we pay to protect us had a handle on these things. But no one disputes those numbers any more. Oberweis was right. In fact, maybe his numbers were a little low. If we had only known.

So, who was ABO? Well, the reluctant party chair was Judy Barr Topinka. The party was scandal-ridden and had no money. It would be like making her captain of the Titanic AFTER it hit the iceberg. But Judy was loyal to the wishes of Washington and Oberwies was never considered. Various names were bantered about, mostly the rich and the famous. Even Da Coach, Mike Ditka, was considered seriously. Most Illinoisans never even knew Ditka was a Republican and here he was being considered. But he went on camera and turned them down.

So, along came a carpetbagger by the name of Alan Keyes. Like Hillary in New York, he was going to campaign here having never lived here in his life. Keyes was a conservative talk show host, black, with a history of strong rhetoric. I can’t imagine why Washington would approve him. After all, he spoke out against Dick Cheney’s lesbian daughter (and all gays) and he too had made some statements about illegal aliens. But the party must have seen him as a cipher, a place holder, a zero.

It didn’t take much to realize he was unelectable. We tried to make sense of it all. Maybe he was coming in to go head-to-head with another black candidate. Or maybe he would attract the attention of the far right. Or maybe he was strong enough and loud enough to compete with Jesse Jackson. Nothing made sense. Maybe Bush actually wanted Obama to win. That made more sense than anything else, but even that was a huge stretch of the imagination.

Topinka held her nose and was cordial enough at the start, but even before election day she was wishing him well, SOMEWHERE ELSE.

So that, my dear friends, is how Barry Obama first came to national office. ABO had a name. It was Alan Keyes and he set a record for losing the Illinois Senate race by the greatest margin.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Bilingual field experience #4

This one isn’t a field experience per se. Though I know the student and her family much better than any of the other kids I’ve discussed here. They are friends of mine. Their oldest girl is the student I observed. We’ll call her Gabby because that isn’t her name (or her temperament).

Gabby did three years of bilingual education in elementary school, and frankly, it was a year too much for her. She quickly learned English, partly because that was a priority for her parents. And she was a fine student all around.

They lived a few blocks from the library so Gabby would spend a lot of time there. She loved books. She would later volunteer at the library.

So, the school district wanted to have a Gifted Bilingual Program to meet the needs of students who were bright but still needed language support. They went to Gabby and her family and begged her to enroll in the program, even though she hadn’t been in a bilingual class for six years! The family refused. Their daughter had already been in a number of accelerated and gifted classes as a mainstream student.

The district continued to beg, saying that she would be an asset to the program. But the family held firm. Gabby held firm. She was part of the regular program and doing well. Why would she want to go back to bilingual anything? (To make the district look good, that’s why!)

Gabby went on to an international studies program in her high school and was later accepted at a well-respected university. Gabby is doing just fine, thank you.

The moral of this story is that school districts sometimes do self-serving things, even if it isn't for the benefit of the student. Parents need to be firm if they feel their child is being used by the system.

Bilingual field experience #3

My next experience wasn’t part of my punishment for criticizing the bilingual program. In fact, it preceded the entire situation by more than a year.

I had made a goal for myself that I was going to visit at least five schools a year. Sometimes we went to various schools as a matter of course and other times we had a specific purpose. I believe this visit was to find out about a counseling program of some sorts, but such visits also included a tour of the place.

This school can be described as a monument to failed instructional theory. It was one of those “open classroom” designs from the 1970s. Someone wrote a book based on their research that “proved” how well the one-room school house worked. So they built schools all over the country with a large open classroom area that had no doors or partitions. And they turned the teachers loose with their classes and walked away.

The “experts” returned in a couple of years and found the classes set up around the edges with the desks in neat little rows and the teachers talking softly to the students to avoid disturbing the class next to them. Where was the happy din of students of all ages mingled together in learning? Well, it didn’t work, folks!

So, the school districts used partitions to divide up this large hall into classrooms resembling slices of pizza. After spending extra money we were back to the traditional classroom once again, sort of.

It was in one of these wedge-shaped classrooms that I was told of a young fifth grader who had just transferred in. He was from Egypt. His parents had brought him here because his father had taken a job assignment in the area.

I asked, “What do you do for a boy from Egypt?” The principal explained to me that he was placed in the rear of the class along with one of the brightest students. They would work together and this other student would guide him along during the day. He explained that no one in the school spoke Egyptian. (I thought to myself, that’s not surprising but what the boy really needs is someone who speaks Arabic. But I held my tongue.)

The boy had only been here a few weeks and yet I observed that he seemed to be flourishing. Watching TV in English was a big boost for vocabulary and accent. And his family wanted him to learn English and encouraged him.

There were no textbooks for him, no teachers who spoke his language, no Arabic-speaking classmates. And yet somehow he was managing.

His situation is typical. Most school districts are proud to say that their students speak 60 different languages. But only in the fine print do you realize that the bilingual program is almost entirely a Spanish program. Here and there you will see a Korean program or a Polish one, but the business is in the Spanish arena. That’s where all the emphasis is. That’s where the textbooks are. That’s where the payroll money is spent.

The whole sentiment that you have to devote huge resources to kids who don’t speak English only applies if you can build a program around it. Otherwise, the two or five or ten kids who come here from other countries have to sink or swim. There’s not much we can do for them. The teacher and the principal just do the best they can with them.

I’d like to see a longitudinal study of the performance of these oddball foreign students compared with those in a structured bilingual program. My guess is that they’d outperform the transitional kids by a mile. But that would just embarrass the school districts and force them to say that the Spanish speaking kids have other challenges due to the poverty of their families.

It couldn’t possibly have anything to do with the program itself. Or could it?

Monday, May 28, 2007

Bilingual field experience #2

My second tour of bilingual classrooms was an entirely different experience although she taught right next door to #1 (that's called academic freedom, folks). The teacher was a redhead who had a hint of a Scottish brogue. She was older; perhaps late 40s. She too had labeled items in her third grade classroom. But the index cards were in English and Spanish. And most of the supplemental material around the room was in English.

She was a joy to watch. She taught with such enthusiasm that you couldn’t help paying attention. Most of her lecture was in English, but she watched carefully for comprehension, especially the new students.

She had placed the newcomers close to the experienced ones and sometimes called out things like, “Roberto, help Pedro with that, will you?” And the student would receive only enough Spanish instruction help to keep up with the class.

This woman spoke passable Spanish. Her vocabulary was fine; her accent wasn’t anything spectacular. She had adequate Spanish to work with the parents and manage the classroom, but she was nowhere near the level of a native Spanish speaker. Yet, she was teaching these students and they were learning.

I thought to myself, “This is the type of teacher we need if we are going to shorten the number of years a student stays in the program.”

Survey says...

On January 7, 2004, George W. Bush made it clear that he was going after the brown vote with a vengeance. He spoke from the White House about his Guest Worker Program after a two and a half year silence following 9/11. He was kicking off his Latino campaign for his bid for a second term in November, and getting winks and nods from business interests at the same time.

Within a week of that speech, the Border Patrol began a survey of people caught crossing the Southern border. That survey was discontinued on January 27, 2004 at the request of Washington.
Here’s the link:

For those who don’t want to read the 16 pages, here are the Cliff’s Notes on the survey:
*The Government only released half of the surveys. As bad as this information is, you wonder what they are hiding.
*Country of origin: 88% from Mexico (No big surprise. It is their border.)
*How long do you plan to stay?: More than a year- 43% Forever- 20%
*Have you heard the US is offering amnesty?: 61% said Yes
*Did the hope of amnesty influence your decision to come here?: 45% said Yes
*Will you apply for amnesty?: 81% said Yes
*Have you ever crossed illegally before?: 64% said Yes
*Do you plan to become a US Citizen?: 67% said Yes
*Do you plan to petition for other family members to come here?: 67% said Yes

Gee, I wonder why it took Judicial Watch 18 months to get Washington to release the information. You would think Bush would be proud that people in Mexico are following his programs and pronouncements. And it might have had an impact on the Presidential election.

All’s well that ends well, they say. Bush received lots of campaign cash from big business. He is also estimated to have won 40% of the Hispanic vote in November of 2004. As Henry Cate VII has said: “The problem with political jokes is they get elected.” Or as Ronald Reagan once said: “Politics is supposed to be the second oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first.”

Has anybody seen the latest approval ratings for the President and Congress? :)

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Bilingual field experience #1

My first visit was to a fourth grade class. When I entered the room I immediately noticed that everything was labeled in Spanish. You know how teachers put up index cards all around the room to identify “clock”, “door”, “East”, “desk”, etc. Well, this teacher had put up Spanish cards all over the room.

Secondly, I noticed that all the supplemental material in the room was in Spanish. So, when a student finished an assignment early or had free time, the material he would pick up would be in Spanish, be it a book or a magazine or a puzzle.

The teacher spoke English well, though there was a hint of an accent. The teacher’s aide spoke only Spanish.

(I want to interject here that the school district took annual trips to Mexico to recruit teachers. On at least one occasion they went to Spain. Teachers they recruited in foreign countries were given help with visas and relocation. They were also granted a two year grace period to get certified. They were required to get the TB test, but otherwise could teach without a certificate. I suggested to HR that they take a recruiting trip to BYU. There they would find students with fluency in whatever language they wanted and, considering Utah’s low teacher pay scale, some willing candidates to fill the positions. I was told that they sent information to BYU but weren’t interested in sending out a recruiter. I guess Mexico City makes for a better junket than Provo!)

Now, back to my visit. I was in the class for a couple of hours and most of the lesson was conducted in English, though I got the distinct impression that she was losing most of the group. I think the show was for me. In fact, one of the kids close by whispered to his classmate in Spanish, “Why so much English today?”

I speak Spanish but I wasn’t about to let the teacher know that.

The goal of transitional bilingual education is to preserve the native language and culture first, then add English to it. As for teaching American culture, that is off limits. We would be forcing our belief system on other groups and we are not imperialists. Whenever I talk to school teachers about this, I get very frustrated. They don’t get the distinction between invading another country and forcing them to follow our ways and expecting people to follow our customs in our country. Like I say, bilingual education thwarts assimilation.

Back to preserving the native language, the kids are being taught the parts of a flower in Spanish first, then in English. Now, they don’t know the parts of the flower in any language, so we teach them the terminology in their own tongue first, then help them translate the information into English. That doesn’t seem right to me. No wonder it takes 4-5 years!

So, this experience was a dog-and-pony show set up for my benefit. I wasn’t buying it. The teacher was focused on Spanish, the room was set up for Spanish, and the aide could not help model the English language because she hadn’t learned it. And she never would by sitting in a class like that. It was a waste of taxpayer money.

My bilingual encounters

I was once the member of a school board in a large district in the Chicago suburbs. I like to think of it as four years held captive by socialists, but it was a learning experience.

I have come to believe that if you were to put 20 top education experts in a room and asked them to put together a program to halt the assimilation process, they could do no better than the transitional bilingual program as it exists today in our school district.

Under “Other Business” at one board meeting I requested that the superintendent study ways to shorten the bilingual program from 4-5 years to 2-3 years. I pointed out that the publication Education Week recently ran a story about teaching English in Puerto Rico in preparation for an appeal for statehood.

The story indicated that the Secretary of Education in Puerto Rico was implementing a plan to teach students Math and Science using English textbooks. Since we had just completed a purchase of textbooks in Spanish for our kids, I said something like: “The frightening thing is that a student in Puerto Rico may have a greater chance of being exposed to English than a bilingual student in our district.”

I also reminded my colleagues that due to budget restraints, all we were able to offer our middle school students were nine week survey courses in French and Spanish. Only the foreign born and their offspring were given intensive language classes.

I didn’t want to eliminate the bilingual program; merely shorten it.

My request didn’t get much attention from my fellow board members, and it didn’t get any press coverage either. But two weeks later the board room was packed with teachers, parents, and cute little brown-eyed kids. They had been mobilized by the district employees who make a living in bilingual education. They wanted to make it clear that the program was off limits to the board.

Perhaps the most revealing person to speak (and one who even got the attention of other board members) was a woman in her late twenties with just a slight Spanish accent. She told us that she was the product of our bilingual program and that she liked it so much that she had enrolled her own son in it! She said knowing two languages, especially English and Spanish, was so valuable in our society and she wanted her son to have that advantage.

Other board members picked up on that message; people were using it for a second generation as an intensive dual language program. But the only people who could get it were Hispanics.

Since I could only count one other vote on the board to advance the idea of shortening the transition time, it went nowhere.

But at the request of the Director of Bilingual Education I did agree to visit some bilingual classes to see for myself. In the next few days you will see the results of my visits and other close encounters of the bilingual kind. Look for the blogs.

I’ve always wondered how they can even carry on with a straight face. The mantra of Special Education is mainstream, mainstream, mainstream. You look for the least restrictive environment for the student. And sometimes people are critical that we are pushing Special Ed kids out of the program too fast.

But when it comes to bilingual, it is the exact opposite. They keep them as long as they can get away with it. Don’t you dare suggest shortening the program. They aren’t ready yet.

If they were completely honest with themselves they would admit that the reason kids linger in the program is to make it look good. You need a certain percentage of high performers to mask the fact that foreign born Hispanics do not value education, do not work with their kids, and their children are not academically prepared to work at grade level.

We can’t possibly tell the world that these children are going to need more work, not necessarily because of language but because of where they came from.

Look at virtually any school district's stats anywhere in the country and you will see that the highest drop out rates are for Hispanic male students. I can almost guarantee it.

Another myth perpetrated by the bilingual department is that they educate children for the same amount or even less than the per pupil cost of other children. That may be true on the surface but you need to explain to them that bilingual education requires a duplicate set of teachers, books, classrooms, fixtures, and busses. Therefore, the entire program is an additional expense.

And you need to remind them that their program sponges off the rest of the school for art, music, food service, and extracurricular activities. They are not a stand-alone program. They are borrowing from the other kids and the costs get charged to their per-pupil expenses. So stop the foolish talk about being cheaper than educating the native kids.

You’ll like this next tidbit. The Salt Lake City School District sent a letter of apology to Hispanic parents for dabbling in immigration matters and frightening the illegal aliens in town. (see Salt Lake Tribune, 7/22/06 “Latino parents receive apology”). What was their crime? They had the nerve to ask students at one middle school how long they have lived in the United States. They were just trying to assess the needs of the kids. This apology came after a complaint to the federal Office of Civil Rights.

And I also learned from the experience that the Salt Lake City School District has a position called the “assistant to the superintendent for equity and advocacy”. Now isn’t that special!

Watch for my four installments of bilingual field experiences.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Not a "free" country

I was in the crowd at the Carpentersville Illinois Village Hall on October 3rd, about five “layers” back from the door. They gave me number 69 of 212 tickets into the chambers. Behind me were the protesters with their megaphone and their flags waving. Estimates range from 1000-3000 pro-illegal protesters, most bussed in from Chicago.

One flag display was particularly disturbing to me. They had Old Glory attached to a pole back-to-back with the Mexican flag. I suppose the symbolism they were trying to achieve was unity or equality. But I was taught that every other banner dipped to the American Flag here in the United States. It just seemed wrong to have her half covered up at the same height as another flag.

A stocky young boy with short brown hair and olive skin was circulating through the crowd. He looked like a middle schooler, about 14. He kept repeating to no one in particular, “I thought this was supposed to be a free country.”

I wanted so desperately to take him on a tour. I wanted to show him the kitchen where “free” school lunches are prepared, to let him see that someone writes checks to food vendors, employees, and delivery drivers. Someone paid for those free lunches.

I wanted to explain to him that when a family couldn’t afford to pay the fees at the beginning of the school year, that everyone else’s fees went up a little bit to make up for it.

I wanted to take him to the administration office of his school district so he could see that bilingual education meant separate textbooks, teachers, classrooms, and sometimes school busses.

I wanted to show that young man how free health care at the emergency room wasn’t just “written off”, but that sometimes the hospital gets paid by the government (tax money), and sometimes those with insurance and deductibles subsidized it, and sometimes the hospital just closes its doors, which makes everyone in town suffer.

I wanted to show the boy a property tax bill that funds city services and schools. You see, taxes are assessed based on demand coming from the home and services going back into the home, with some “good of the community” revenue thrown in. For example, we depend on those families where the kids have grown to continue to fund the schools. School districts and municipalities rely on an analysis often called the Naperville Study to know what the demands will be and tax accordingly. Things go out of whack quickly when too many people live in a home intended for two adults and two children.

Villages need to meet payroll and provide services, so everybody pays for overcrowded housing. And too much overcrowding in the neighborhood makes my home worth less. Again, someone else is paying for what this boy thinks is free.

And I wanted to take him to Arlington National Cemetery where we could walk the rows of white markers. I wanted to explain to him that for well over 200 years people have paid with their lives for this “free” country, and every week more people not much older than this young boy are still paying the price.

No son, in so many ways America is not a free country.

Romney on Immigration

On May 17th I was sending messages to Congress about their immigration reform package, and I e-mailed the same information to the Romney campaign at

Within five hours I got back this response:
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Thank you for contacting the Romney for President Campaign regarding the recent U.S. Senate agreement on immigration reform. Governor Romney issued the following statement on Thursday, May 17th:

“I strongly oppose today’s bill going through the Senate. It is the wrong approach. Any legislation that allows illegal immigrants to stay in the country indefinitely, as the new ‘Z-Visa’ does, is a form of amnesty. That is unfair to the millions of people who have applied to legally immigrate to the U.S.

“Today’s Senate agreement falls short of the actions needed to both solve our country’s illegal immigration problem and also strengthen our legal immigration system. Border security and a reliable employment verification system must be our first priority.”

Thank you again for contacting the Romney for President Campaign about this important issue. Please feel free to visit for updated information on this and other issues that may be of concern to you. We look forward to hearing from you in the future.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - -
I haven’t heard back from anyone in Washington in over a week, even McCain.

So, Mitt gets a solid A for responsiveness. Then again, people up for election are usually more responsive than those who are not.

There has been some talk about Mitt waffling on issues, and I certainly can see that. His gaff about being a hunter/gun owner was foolish. And some of his statements in interviews are wild. He needs a stronger handler. He needs to stay on message. Maybe Carville is available. (I can see it now; It’s the war, stupid.)

The only thing I’ve observed about Romney and immigration is that as Governor of Massachusetts he pushed to make the State Police (aka Highway Patrol for you Westerners) immigration agents. It isn’t a bad idea really. Alabama has 60 troopers trained. Illinois troopers make nearly half a million traffic stops a year, but we’re managed by liberals here so I don’t think we’ll see them deputized any time soon.

And Romney fought driving certificates. So, that tells me that when he’s thinking straight and actually being the executive, he has the right idea about immigration.

He gets in trouble in interviews where he is trying too hard to appeal to everyone. He’s softening his stance for the audience. He wants to be liked.

He should heed the advice of Eugene McCarthy: “Remember that the worst accidents occur in or near the middle of the road.”

I have no idea if he can win by being strongly conservative, but I would certainly respect him more if he would hold firm. Despite the mixed messages, I think he’s a better choice than the rest of the pack. Then again, the election is 18 months away. I could be persuaded to vote otherwise.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Whoa there, Perfesser!

I’m gonna have to report two researchers to Jamie Whyte, author of a delightful book called “Crimes against Logic.” (I recommend you get a copy and read it.) I think Mr. Whyte just might have some material for a sequel.

The culprits are Drs. Ruben G. Rumbaut and Walter E. Ewing. Their crime might have something to do with the groups they were working for when they wrote their research; The American Immigration Law Foundation and The Immigration Policy Center. You’ll see why I make that allegation in a moment.

So, these two perfessers wrote a scholarly piece called “The Myth of Immigrant Criminality and the Paradox of Assimilation.” Be careful when you pick it up; you’ll get a hernia from all the baggage attached to the research!

This report received a fair amount of ink in February and March as newspapers and magazines reported in similar fashion to The Arizona Star who started their article on February 27th with this sentence: “Immigrants – both legal and illegal – do not raise the rate of crime in the United States.”

You can’t blame the press; they were just quoting Dr. Rumbaut in the text of the report itself: “The problem of crime and incarceration in the United States is not caused or even aggravated by immigrants, REGARDLESS OF THEIR LEGAL STATUS.” (pg.14, emphasis mine)

The problem is, the study itself did not differentiate between those who are here legally and illegal aliens. They simply studied foreign born criminals and drew their own conclusions about immigration status. You can’t blame them really; few statistics are kept by status. (See my blog, “Hard to say”, for more on that subject.)

But that didn’t stop them from touting this as “proof” that illegal aliens are safer to live with than the rest of the population. And the press loved that tidbit of good news.

So, I’m accusing them of this crime against logic, that the foreign born crime rate DOES NOT equal the illegal alien crime rate. It’s a non sequitur.

I might suggest that the authors study some other data such as the Government Accountability Office report to Congress in April of 2005 about illegal aliens arrested in the US. (Report GAO-05-646R). That report studied 55,000 known illegals and found they were arrested an average of eight times each!

Or perhaps they would enjoy reading Criminal Alien Nation to review the data leading to the conclusion that 27% of all prisoners in federal custody are criminal illegal aliens.

Or the Violent Crimes Institute study that reveals that 2% of all illegal aliens are sexual predators, with an average of four victims each.

Or perhaps Dr. Rumbaut could hop in his Prius and drive from UC-Irvine to the Costa Mesa City Jail and review the police reports. The full time ICE agent will tell him that one in ten people booked are illegal aliens, mostly from Mexico. He can put in his laptop that Costa Mesa has a population of 110,000 people, 30% of whom are Hispanic.

I hope they were well-paid for their work. I’m sure their sponsors are pleased. I also hope that people will consider the source when they read such “scholarly works”.

By the way, if you take their report at face value, it suggests that anchor babies are a dangerous bunch. But alas, the good doctors inform us that they are merely victims of poor assimilation.

Hard to Say

David Walsh wrote an article a few years ago called, “Immigrant Crime: Who Wants to Know?” You can find it on if you look for it.

Walsh was lamenting the lack of data about immigrant crime. It seems that government agencies and departments were not keeping track of crime by illegal aliens.

I have first-hand information that the problem still exists today. In our community the police chief was confronted with the problem of illegal aliens. She shot back to a couple of middle aged ladies with, “Would you be able to prove your citizenship if stopped by the police?”

At the time I thought it was just a rhetorical question. I would hope that any officer in town would be able to correctly deduce immigration status in 90% of the encounters simply from experience and reason.

And I was assured that the police department uses the Homeland Security databases available through the Law Enforcement Support Center in Vermont. Our cops are smart and they have all the tools available, so they should rarely be stumped if they want to find out.

But then something strange happened. A woman crashed here minivan into a commuter train, killing her two sisters and infant nephew in the process. The newspapers reported that she had no license and no insurance.....and no one in the van spoke English. Even a casual observer would likely conclude that she was an illegal alien, right?

But eight days after the accident the State’s Attorney held a press conference about the case. The police chief was present. Here’s a quote from the reporter at the meeting: “Police have been unable to determine (driver’s name) legal status.” She goes on to quote the police chief who said, “We have been provided with no documents that prove legal residency.”

Three people are dead and a bunch of children in the van are hurting, and the police are unable to determine immigration status. Or perhaps, they are unwilling to mouth the words, “illegal alien”. This is the same police chief who adamantly refuses to have her officers trained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

I have been saying for a year now that we ought to at least keep track of the illegal aliens arrested so we know how big the problem is, even if we don’t deport them.

One bright spot is the Costa Mesa City Jail. They know who they have in custody. There is no, “We have been provided with no documents that prove legal residency” in Costa Mesa. Good for them!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Jim Hayes - a man for all seasons

You probably don’t know the name Jim Hayes. He’s the Regional Field Office Director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in Southern California. And he takes his job very seriously.

Here are some of the things he has done:

*He did a sweep of all prisoners in custody in LA and Orange Counties. His agents went to every jail and prison and interviewed all foreign-born prisoners. As a result of the sweep they were able to identify and tag for deportation every illegal alien in custody, a total of 423.

*He placed a full time immigration agent in the Costa Mesa City Jail. The program is nearly six months old now. They have determined that roughly 10% of all people booked in the jail are illegal aliens. The agent flags them for deportation as soon as they have served their time in the USA. And Hayes doesn’t care why you were brought in. Even if you were arrested for jaywalking, you are subject to inspection and deportation.

*He is not afraid of “collateral arrests”. This means that if his agents are on an assignment to pick someone up and they encounter another illegal alien in the process, they don’t ignore him, they arrest him! And Hayes doesn’t apologize for doing so! A case in point was a sweep conducted in January. In one case, they were looking for a convicted rapist. The rapist had moved out, but ICE arrested six other people in the house. It turns out that all six were illegal aliens, and four of them had criminal records. In March, ICE went looking for 300 fugitives in San Diego. They only found 62 of them but took 297 other people into custody along the way.

When asked about the process, Robin Baker, the San Diego Director of Detentions and Removals at ICE said: “We can’t look the other way. We did that for too long.” Amen to that.

This is quite a different operation than Chicago where ICE announced that illegals could protest with confidence on May 1, 2006 because their agents promised not to look for anyone deportable in the crowd!

And when agents invaded a fake ID mill in the Little Village neighborhood last month, they went out of their way not to arrest anyone other than the 22 people they were specifically looking for.

Now I ask you, which operation is more likely to deter future illegal entry?

Senator Harry Reid, D-Nevada

The distinguished gentleman from Nevada couldn't wait last week to have a cloture vote that would limit debate on the immigration bill to 30 hours, even though the 1,000 page document (correction: 380 page document 6/1/07) hadn't even been printed yet when he proposed it!

Now Reid says, “It would be to the best interests of the Senate ... that we not try to finish this bill this week.” He's giving it a couple of weeks for study and debate. How magnanimous of him.

Perhaps Reid took a nose count and decided not everyone was as gung-ho as he was. In fact, some of the members of the famous committee that created the plan seem to have backed off.

Of course, Nevada thrives on construction and the hospitality business, two industries that hire lots of illegals. Maybe there are several Senate colleagues who don't share his enthusiasm. Let's hope so.

Bush on immigration

For your consideration, a little history of George W. Bush and immigration, particularly Mexican immigration.

It seems that his father, President George "41" Bush, hired a Mexican housekeeper when they lived in Midland. Her name was Paula Rendon. I've never read anything about her immigration status, but little George says, "She loved me. She chewed me out. She tried to shape me up."

Maybe Paula taught him how to say "nucular". Maybe she taught him the meaning of the word "amnesty". Maybe she was the one who taught him about budgets and how to live within your means. (Sorry for the sarcasm. I couldn't resist.)

Thanks to Karl Rove, the Bush family has embraced the Hispanic voter. You don't win in Texas politics without at least considering the Latinos. You can court them or work around them, but you must factor them in.

And the President has done very well with the brown vote; remarkably well for a Republican.

As President it didn't take long for him to work on the Guest Worker program. In a press briefing on July 26, 2001, Ari Fleischer was gallantly attempting to explain to reporters that the guest worker program was NOT amnesty. (Some things never change!) You can read the text of that exchange at

Bush had only been in the White House for six months and already he was having trouble explaining why the plan wasn't amnesty.

Just six days before 9/11 Bush was entertaining Vicente Fox at the White House. Both of them were pushing hard to get amnesty (er...Guest Worker status) for illegal aliens. And even then, way back in September of 2001, Bush said, "Mexican trucks ought to be moving in the United States." (There's a little tidbit for you Super Highway folks.)

And during that visit Bush talked in guarded but optimistic terms about getting his Guest Worker plan passed by the end of 2001.

Then planes flew into buildings and all of Washington backed off on bringing foreigners into the country. The spotlight was on border security and visa controls, not open borders and amnesty.

Voter amnesia was given a chance to work and in January of 2004 Bush was back with his Guest Worker program. It was, after all, an election year. The Hispanics needed some stroking if he was going to win in November. And most experts estimate that 40% of the brown vote went to Bush that year. Those are fine numbers. The Big Tent theory was working.

Also in January of 2004, Bush requested that the Border Patrol conduct surveys of the people captured trying to cross the border. I suppose he expected these people to say, "I just want to come here to work so I can feed my family back home." Well, the results were not so altruistic.

What they said was that they had heard Bush was going to offer amnesty and they wanted to get in here while the getting was good.

The survey lasted for about two weeks and was pulled. The administration tried to hush it up but Judicial Watch sued to get it released under Freedom of Information. They got some of the results, not all. It is an interesting read for those who want to know why people want to sneak across our southern border.

Now, Bush has tried to walk the line with conservatives. He presented his comprehensive plan on April 24, 2006. One of his planks was "Better worksite enforcement". But a month later as the keynote speaker at the NRA in Chicago (not THAT NRA, the National Restaurant Association) Bush forgot all about worksite enforcement. Instead, he inserted in its place, "We must create a reliable system for verifying documents and work eligibility..." There was no way he was going to tell that group that ICE agents were going to do more raids and send employers to jail.

Why? Because nearly 20% of the illegals are employed in the hospitality business.

And how did the NRA like Bush? They supported him and endorsed his reform plan. Why? Because the plan represents the best hope for NRA businesses to continue to have cheap labor.

Sometimes Bush appears tough on enforcement. After all, he signed the 700 mile fence bill. And worksite raids are on the rise. And we have 10% more detention beds. And we've hired more border agents. And we sent the National Guard to help at the border. We're doing a good job, right?

I would say those are incremental efforts to address a monumental problem. And although it looks good on paper, the reality is that Bush has said "no" to many efforts that would have helped.

Did you know that Bush had authorization from Congress after 9/11 to add border patrol agents and he left money on the table! He could have hired hundreds more three years ago and chose not to do it.

As for beds, Bush could have pushed to convert closed military bases into detention centers five years ago, and he didn't. His paltry 2,200 new beds is a drop in the bucket.

Some of the programs Bush talks about have existed for years, like Basic PILOT for work eligibility verification. But no one wants to make it mandatory since that would raise the ire of the Latinos and his friends in business.

And Bush alone can take responsibility for the lack of cooperation in government. Social Security, the IRS, and ICE are supposed to be sharing data and working together. But five years after 9/11 they still don't.

Well, you can read more about Bush elsewhere. I can only say that his tough talk isn't matched by action. Is there any wonder that the American people question the Executive Branch's ability to carry out any enforcement strategy? We are tired of Washington looking at our phone records and bank transactions. We are tired of taking our clothes off at the airport and leaving behind our shampoo and pocket knives. We've done everything we've been asked to do and given you more power than ever before, and yet you refuse to create an atmosphere of deterrence to stop the illegal aliens here.

House Bill 4437 was a good effort, but Bush didn't like it. That says it all for me.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Feedback to Washington

I faxed this to 14 members of Congress and the President. Most of the faxes went through on Friday night. Only John McCain and Lindsey Graham had their fax machines off the hook. (I tried for 18 hours and finally e-mailed them both.)

My feedback on the Comprehensive Immigration Reform proposal as outlined on the White House website - - - - - -

Dear Sirs:

I am appalled at the bipartisan plan announced today for “Comprehensive Immigration Reform.” Here’s why:

1) Enforcement first. Why not House Bill 4437 if you really mean it? You must realize from the fact that 2/3 of Americans have given you unacceptable approval ratings that we do not believe you can implement anything unless you prove it to us first. Read your mail! The GAO told you in December that the US VISIT technology was way behind schedule. They even told you that it may be unworkable. Perhaps you ought to watch the video of the WTC crumbling one more time to remind you how important this is.
2) Employer verification tools. See above. You’ve had Basic PILOT for ten years.
3) Temp worker program. We now have 6.5 million illegal workers in America, about 5% of the workforce. You add 400,000 guest workers a year. That amounts to 17% of the net job creation a year. And this improves the situation in what way?
4) No amnesty. The only way you can legitimately say that is to require them to return to their own country and get in line at the embassy. Anything less rewards them for having come here in defiance of our law. The “without animosity” part comes in when we allow them to go home without prosecuting them.
5) Strengthening assimilation. A great concept but why do the taxpayers have to fund the program. Sorry, no entitlements. Come here legally and work for the English lessons.
6) Merit system. I’ll assume it will be better thought out and better executed than the 1965 fiasco. Do you realize that the politicians of the day testified that the impact would be 5,000 new immigrants a year? Do you realize the first year actually brought 90,000 new immigrants? And 90,000 more the year after that.
7) End chain migration. Yes, but the other end needs some work as well. How about new laws to prevent future anchor babies?
8) Clearing the family backlog. Only if it benefits the people of the United States. Let’s not simply do it as a political move.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Politicians and illegal aliens.

(I wrote this on May 16th, before the "Comprehensive Immigration Reform" plan was announced. I think it still applies.)

What is going on in Washington? There is strong momentum to grant amnesty to millions of people who have come here illegally. Who are the key players and why do they feel this way?

Bush. He has turned out to be more liberal than we could have possibly imagined. He has run up the deficit, tolerated immoral behavior within the party, failed to exercise leadership in congress, withheld the veto power, submitted high court candidates that were laughable, and embraced illegal aliens. Clearly, he is a “Big Tent Republican”, a populist. He will do whatever it takes to win an election. To him a firm party platform is nonsense; what we need is voter appeal. And he has plenty of company, which is frightening indeed. I call them Bushocrats because there is little of the conservative nature in them.

The Democrats. At least they are predictable. They owned the Hispanic vote until Bush began chipping away at it. Once he started working their side of the street, they began agitating Latino activists. They are the prize in a bidding war for swing votes.

Both parties know how I will vote. They have figured out the Soccer Mom. The union man will always vote for the party. But the Latinos are up for grabs. Bush is said to have won over the hearts of 40% of them in 2004. That simply will not do for the Democrats. So the deals abound.

What happened in November 2006 is sometimes characterized as a spanking of the Republicans for playing hardball on immigration. It is true that there was a 10% shift of the Hispanic vote from Republican to Democrat. The Latino activists will tell you it is because they don’t trust the Republicans to deliver immigration reform. But they are selling their own people short, as if brown voters only care about that one issue.

What they don’t tell you is that the white voters shifted 11% from the right to the left. ONE PERCENT MORE MOVEMENT THAN THE LATINOS! Why? Well, white voters were concerned about Republican immorality and corruption (The Gay Congressman Scandal that went unchecked by the House), deficit spending, and poor execution of the war strategy in Iraq.

Could it be that Hispanic voters were reacting to the same issues? Of course not, it was immigration. Yeah, right. Don’t downplay the Latino voter's ability to care about other issues.

So, the politicians are trying to give away the country and take credit for it, hoping to be the heroes of immigration reform.

Mayor Ritchie Daley spoke on May 1st (a traditional socialist/communist holiday-“Workers of the world unite”) to the crowd gathered in Chicago protesting immigration policy. I’ve listened to the video clip several times.

Maybe he said: “We will not be da turd!” which is an affirmation for self-esteem sometimes uttered on the South side.

Or maybe it was: We will not be detoured!” but to say that in Chicago in the summertime is silly. It’s just silly.

The papers quoted him as saying, “We will not be deterred!” That is an interesting word, “deter”. Way back in 1981 a commission put together by Jimmy Carter gave their recommendations on the matter of immigration reform. It was this liberal group that suggested amnesty for illegals who had been here for a few years.

But that same commission gave a strong warning. They said that if we don’t take steps to deter future illegals, we’ll be back with the same problem in a few years.

On of the key areas of deterrence was deportation. Here’s what they said: “We recommend that deportation and removal of undocumented/illegal migrants should be effected to discourage early return. Adequate funds should be available to maintain high levels of alien apprehension, detention, and deportation throughout the year.”

They not only knew what needed to be done but they also told the government HOW to do it. They said we’ve got to apprehend them. Take them off the streets and arrest them for being here illegally. And we need to detain them. 22,000 beds will not do the job, President Bush. And we need to have the guts to deport them.

Well, we didn’t listen and we got exactly what they predicted- the illegals are back and we don’t know how to deal with the problem. Duh!

So when Daley says, “We will not be deterred!”, he really means, “They have not been deterred and now I’m going to make the best of the situation.

Luis Gutierrez was also a speaker at that rally. We often wonder why those who have taken the oath of office are so loyal to foreigners, especially illegal ones. Because that is where the growth is. Cook County Illinois saw a 10.1% increase in Hispanics from 2000-2005 while the total population shrunk by 1.4%. (Sounds like white flight to me.) Daley and Gutierrez aren’t stupid and they aren’t bleeding hearts. They simply see the demographic reality that is unfolding right before their eyes in their jurisdictions. A politician simply cannot ignore the brown vote in Chicago any more than he can ignore the black vote.

The question is whether or not the problem has reached “critical mass” in enough populous areas of the United States. If so, the battle is lost. It isn’t hard to see that a high birth rate and a high immigration rate will make the USA a Spanish speaking country within a generation or two. We’ve already been bombarded with Spanish signage, packaging, and media (TV, radio, newspapers). Do you think these things exist due to liberal thinking? No! We have them because businesses and governments believe they will appeal to buyers and voters.

The sad part of it is that our nation’s leaders never really planned this out. It just began to happen and politicians kept doing the expedient thing rather than the right thing. In fact, if you go back to the mid to late 1960s you will see that immigration reform was done in the name of family unification. They scarcely thought of Mexico.

In the first transition year of the 1965 reform bill the federal experts predicted that the changes would only add 5,000 new immigrants. They were wrong. The increase was 90,000! And another 90,000 on top of that the next year! That’s quite a difference. In the real world mistakes like that will get you fired. But instead of admitting that they blew it, they kept ignoring the reality of their poor planning. And these were just the legal immigrants. There was the problem of illegal aliens all along.

It is almost eerie to read the commission recommendations in 1981 and 1994 when blue ribbon panels were convened to advise the government on immigration. The same things Bush talks about today were problems back then. Border security, the need for deportation, employer sanctions, visa control, and document fraud. Some things never change.

And the September 11th Commission made the same points all over again, punctuated with 3,000 dead Americans. Still Washington didn’t listen. And they aren’t listening now. The focus of all the talk about immigration is on accommodating the 12 million illegals residing here and their relatives in third world countries that want to come later.

There isn’t much talk about deterrence, demographics, or defense.

And frankly, most Americans doubt the federal government has the ability to do much of anything effectively, except perhaps collect taxes and harass the law abiding. But we’ve always been pretty cooperative, haven’t we?

This latest plan has a couple of things to say about “triggers”, implying that the deal includes certain milestones of enforcement BEFORE perks can be given to the illegals. But that isn’t going to deter the next batch of would-be illegal aliens; all they care about is the ability to hide here until Washington gets generous again.

Deterrence for me means some strong, visible deportation efforts. It means reversing the “laws” granted by the courts that invite illegals to come here for anchor baby citizenship, free emergency care, and free public education. And it means local enforcement of immigration laws rather than silent accommodation of those who are here illegally.

Demographics means a thoughtful discussion by our elected leaders about whether or not we should allow the U.S.A. to get browner. And if the answer is no, we ought to change the quotas and the mix of immigrants to reverse the trend.

As for defense, do we have control of our borders? Do we know where our visa-holding visitors are? Do we have ways to remove them when their visas expire? Have we learned how to master things like Drivers Licenses and bank accounts?

But with Bush and Congress having approval ratings in the low 30’s they seem oblivious to the people and our disgust with their behavior. They rush about making their deals and thinking only of themselves. If we can’t seem to enforce the laws, let’s just make them easier to enforce. That’ll work. It’s too bad, really. This was a nice country once.

Who are the protesters?

Where are they coming from?
I like to try and understand those I disagree with. I just might learn something from them.

It has been a puzzle to me to see illegal aliens protesting in the streets, demanding to be legalized. They chant and carry signs. Have you pondered what some of those signs mean?

Like, “We are Americans.” Well, if they mean they were born in the Western Hemisphere, they are right. In fact, there is some validity to their claim. We tend to claim the name “Americans”, when what we really mean is “Citizens of the United States of America.” The term “United States-ans” just doesn’t work.

Mexicans, Canadians, Brazilians, Peruvians….. are all Americans if they were born in North or South America.

If “We are Americans” means they are entitled to live in the United States simply because they are here, or because they have worked here x number of years, then they are mistaken. Sorry, it doesn’t work that way, no matter what the politicians and activists say.

Then there is the sign, “No human being is illegal.” Nice sentiment, but not true. Being human is not, and never was, part of the immigration equation. Taken to extreme, that thought would mean that five billion people should be allowed to live here if they want. I like what a Utah State Rep by the name of Christopher N. Herrod said about it: “Unless you start with the premise that we accept everybody here all at once, everybody who is here illegally is taking someone else’s place.”

One sign really gets me: “Yes, we can!” Can what? Live here illegally and get paid under the table? Steal someone’s identity so you can get a real job? Get free medical care? Jump ahead of your countrymen who have waited years to come here?

In trying to understand the mindset of people who would parade around with signs like that, I’ve decided that many of them really do believe their cause.

I know a delightful young woman from Mexico. Her mother was recruited to come to the United States as a school teacher. She came here with her parents and her sister. They were here for about five years when she wrote a college essay about coming to the United States.

Her story tells me a lot about how we are perceived. Many of her friends in Mexico were not envious of her journey here. They had the Ugly American Syndrome. In fact, some pitied her for being forced to come here. The white man exploits and spreads disease and is uneducated in the classics and is greedy with the resources of the world.

But she came here and has learned to appreciate our way of life. She understands us better. It is a good read. See “Living with Uncle Sam’s Kids” from the Illinois Community College Journalism Association.

Deep in her writings is a sense of Socialism leaning toward Communism. Growing up in a third world country, the children recite poems and learn songs about Robin Hood-like leaders who take care of the poor. Streets are named after them. They have great respect for the leaders who were generous with the masses. And third world countries are known for the poor masses with a very small middle class.

I remember when I lived in Peru in the 1970s bus drivers would have large decals of Ernesto “Che” Guevara plastered all over the inside of their busses. Tupac Amaru was another idolized leader.

The president at the time was Juan Velasco, an army general who came to power when he invaded the palace and sent Belaunde into exile. Velasco was going to nationalize industry. (If this sounds like Venzuela right now, you are right!) He had a strong protectionist import policy. He even worked on the successful native Peruvian enterprises. The government took over the large ranching operations and gave them to the workers.

It was great! For about six months meat was cheap and everyone was pleased. That’s the time to hold your “free” elections, before things turn ugly. And turn ugly they did. They discovered too late that these workers didn’t know how to manage the ranches. They had slaughtered all the breeding cattle!

So, I lived two years in Peru where it was against the law to sell domestic beef 15 days out of every month! That’s right, the whole country ate fish and chicken the last half of every month.

Similar results came from mining, oil, and automotive production. Velasco was popular because he was robbing from the rich and giving to the poor. They loved him for it…until the plan went sour.

The universities of Peru were loaded with unabashed Communists. And Velasco got a sweet deal on MIGs from the Russians. And the Peace Corps was expelled.

So, exactly who is coming to America these days? George Borjas, a Cuban refugee himself, wrote a book called Heaven’s Door. He talks about immigration from the point of view of a sociologist. His book is a study in demographics.

For example, he points out that the average immigrant in 1960 was earning 4% MORE than the average citizen! By 1998, the average immigrant was earning 23% LESS. And if you look at the Mexican immigrants, they were earning nearly 40% less than a U. S. citizen working here.

The difference of course is that immigrants from 1925 to 1965 were allowed to come here based on their ability to contribute to our society and based on preserving the ethnic ratios already present. Those who came here were looking for opportunities to start a business, work hard, and succeed – without the pressures of taxation in their home countries. They wanted to be entrepreneurs.

Contrast those immigrants with the current situation. Huge numbers of immigrants are coming here legally and illegally from the third world. Now, as mentioned, the third world characteristically has no middle class. There are the rulers, and there are the peons. Guess which group wants to come here? Well, the ruling class has a great deal going; they would like to keep it that way.

No, the people coming here from Mexico, the rest of Latin America, the Philippines, China, Africa…are from the poor classes. They are less skilled, less educated, and less likely to start businesses than the ruling class (or the immigrants pre-1960). In other words, they need services and are likely to continue to need services for generations to come!

So when they take to the streets in protest, they really aren’t bold and greedy; they simply come from socialist backgrounds and want what they consider to be their share of our wealth.

They don’t understand the free enterprise system. They don’t understand Capitalism. And frankly, far too many people in Washington have the same problem. This idea that we need these illegals to work for us is plain wrong! What they are doing is distorting and polluting the market pressures that establish the value of work.

And if Washington would think past the next election they would see that 400,000 guest workers constitutes 17% of the net job creation for an entire year! And that statistic doesn’t even begin to address the QUALITY of the new jobs available.

We are told that most of the new jobs in America are from the “service economy”. Where are the illegals working? In hospitality, in cleaning, in landscaping… Washington ought to be addressing the man who worked in manufacturing as a plant manager before production was moved to China. He’ll never see $60K a year again because we aren’t manufacturing things here any more. So, if he’s lucky, he’s making half his skilled salary working in the “service industry”. Instead of pumping 400,000 people into the job market, they ought to work on bringing professional/technical/manufacturing jobs back to America!

And they ought to make America attractive to those who want to create new jobs. Our social programs have created tax rates that rival Europe. The entrepreneurs don’t want to come here now; it’s as bad as their homeland. If they can stomach the taxes, the regulation scares them away.

I read the other day that Germany’s middle class is fleeing to places like India because they can work and earn and thrive there. There was a time when they would have brought their skills and ideas here. Sadly, that mindset is no more. As one entrepreneur living in Bangalore India put it, “I’m fascinated by the pulse of Asia, the upbeat prevailing mood and the wealth of opportunities.” He left Germany due to poor job prospects, high taxes, and the intrusive bureaucracy.

So, when I look at the protesters now, I see socialists. I see people with a strong sense of entitlement. I see desperate, poor people who feel deep in their hearts that we are arrogant and ought to give up some of the earth’s wealth…to them, of course. And I see our elected “leaders” more than willing to redistribute our wealth for the sake of a few votes.