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CA: Life without 50,000 illegal immigrants (Ventura County)
Ventura Star ^ | 4.23.06 | Tom Kisken

Posted on 04/23/2006 4:28:24 PM PDT by NormsRevenge

The strawberries and celery could be gone, replaced by fields of wheat or endless checkerboards of pavement, homes and commerce. Fuel and packaging businesses that rely on farms would be wounded but so would construction companies and golf courses.

Taxes would go down. Hospitals would have more money to spend on wellness programs that combat diabetes. The Ventura County Sheriff's Department would save $3 million a year in jail costs.

There would be more jobs, but maybe not the kind people would want. Wages would rise, but so would the price of a night on the town and the hotel costs of a night out of town. One cost that wouldn't go up more than a few extra dimes would be a trip to a grocery store's produce aisle.

Between 25,000 and 50,000 people living in Ventura County are illegal immigrants, according to Pew Hispanic Center research. What if the number were zero? What if Congress agreed not only to fence off Mexico's border but find and deport every illegal immigrant in the county, state and nation?

A hint of the answer may come May 1 when the same groups that planned the March protest against tougher immigration laws, bringing more than 500,000 people to downtown Los Angeles, ask the nation's illegal and legal immigrants to sit out a day. Don't work. Don't go to school. Don't shop. Don't sell.

Their message is as loud as a flood siren. Without undocumented workers, crops would rot. Restaurants and hotels would fail. The economy would cough and falter like a car running on fumes.

"Everyone who uses us will see if they need us or not," said Alvaro Rojas, an undocumented landscaper who will spend the day home in Ventura, watching television coverage of the walkout. "If the people unite the way they have been, they'll send a message."

But life without undocumented people, according to advocates of tougher immigration laws, would mean plugging the drain that empties welfare and public school budgets. It might not cure California's budget problems but it would help, said John Keeley of the Center for Immigration Studies in Washington, D.C. It could mean better pay for everyone from road repair workers to day-care providers.

"Who in America doesn't want to see wages rise and working conditions improve?" Keeley said. "Who doesn't want to see the poor improve their outcome?"

Neither side suggests that deporting 11 million or more people is possible. But exploring how life would change offers a way to measure the contributions and drains of a population that in Ventura County is between the size of Santa Paula and Camarillo.

The scenario dives deep into emotional wells. Immigrants talk of how look-the-other-way policies exploit undocumented workers through slave wages and squalid living conditions. A Sacramento man in the lodging industry interrupted an analysis of how massive deportation could wound tourism with this aside:

"I'd push the bastards back in a heartbeat."

Economists distill the debate by poking holes in claims made by both sides. They say a Ventura County without undocumented workers would mean more jobs for low-skilled employees but would also mean fewer start-up companies creating new jobs.

"Your economy will grow more slowly," said economist Kevin Klowden of the Milken Institute think tank in Los Angeles. "Southern California becomes more dull. You have fewer people coming in who are eager to start businesses."

Society wouldn't collapse as it did in the 2004 mockumentary, "A Day Without a Mexican," in which 14 million people vanished from California. Klowden argued that countries across the world, from Switzerland to Japan, survive without large illegal immigrant populations. There wouldn't be rioting in the streets. Life would change, but not from day to night.

"If you're talking about 5 percent, it can't be that different. It's only 5 percent," said Los Angeles research economist James Smith, referring to estimates of Ventura County's undocumented population. "You'd still have taxis. You'd still have restaurants. It's just going to be more expensive."

The spectre of a $10 head of lettuce marks immigration debates like neon in Las Vegas. Without undocumented workers to harvest fruits and vegetables, the theory goes, prices would explode.

It is myth, said Phil Martin, an agricultural economist at UC Davis. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show that American households spent about $460 on alcohol in 2004 and only about $370 on fresh fruits and vegetables.

Even if farm wages rose 40 percent, households would pay only $9 more a year for fruits and vegetables, according to Martin's calculations.

"The average household doesn't even go through one head of lettuce every two weeks," he said, focusing on the limited reach of wages. "It's important for farmworkers and it's important for farmers, but it's not all that important to the average household."

Farming on thin ice

Economists don't believe that Scott Deardorff would lose the tomato, lettuce and cabbage farms his family has worked for four generations. They say that if left without an unauthorized workforce, he and other farmers would find crops less reliant on people picking them, maybe wheat or cotton. Or they'd develop machines that can help harvest citrus or even strawberries by shaking the fruit free.

Things look different in a half-picked field of celery just outside Oxnard. Deardorff, who also farms in Fillmore and Piru, uses about 100 farmworkers a day to pick the crops, paying an average of about $9 an hour. When his tomatoes are ready, he uses 300 workers.

Some labor contractors believe that as many as eight of 10 county farmworkers are here illegally. If they all left or were deported, Deardorff and the vast majority of the 2,300 farms throughout Ventura County would be paralyzed.

The berries and lettuce might stay in the fields.

"How many American people do you see in the crews?" said Alex Limon, a farm foreman standing in a Saticoy strawberry field dotted with three dozen workers. "Not one."

Economists argue that workers would emerge if the pay increased. That wouldn't solve Deardorff's problems. The price of crops is set globally, meaning that local farmers are stuck with whatever the market dictates.

If Deardorff had to pay 40 percent more for labor, his costs could rise $2.4 million a year, cutting deep into revenue. He wouldn't cover rent that ranges as high as $3,000 an acre each year.

Wheat wouldn't work either. Deardorff wouldn't be able to grow enough to keep his farm going.

"I wouldn't be here," he said, suggesting that the only people who would survive would be small farmers who serve local markets and the corporate operations that farm in Mexico and other countries. "We'd be dependent on food from over our borders."

If farmers fall, the fault lines would snake everywhere: fuel providers, tractor dealers and businesses that charter helicopters to spray crops.

"We only distribute what these guys need," said Tim Tyler, manager of Calpine Containers in Oxnard, which sells wooden pallets and cartons to farmers. "If they stop harvesting, they're not going to need packaging."

It wouldn't happen overnight, said Bill Watkins, a UC Santa Barbara economist who co-authored a study on Ventura County's agricultural future. But if losses started to grow, farmers would want to sell their land and that could generate political war.

Farmers might push to overturn growth-control laws designed to protect open space and farmland by restricting the ways it can be sold and developed. Slow-growth advocates would push back.

If farmers won, they would probably sell the land slowly to protect its value but, over the years, the county might accumulate more high-rises, shopping centers and homes.

"I think it would accelerate the move to become more like Orange County," Watkins said.

If farmers didn't have the votes to overturn the growth-control laws, they might try to sell their land in small parcels to families who would build sprawling estates and run gentleman farms. They might grow five acres of grapes for wine.

"That's one of those romantic deals for rich people," Watkins said, suggesting that in either scenario, the days of strawberries and celery would be gone.

A growing hit list

In a Ventura County without illegal immigrants, some golf courses might lose 20 percent of their workers, said Steve Badger, a Woodland Hills consultant with 34 years experience in golf. Construction companies nationwide would lose about one of eight people, according to a Pew Hispanic Center study. Restaurants, hotels and other tourist businesses would lose one of 10 employees.

Retail stores and factories would be hit. The increase in wages would topple more dominoes, causing industries that pay the minimum wage to consider pay increases that would in turn force them to charge more for goods and services.

And Rich De La Rosa wouldn't be standing in a Ventura career development center holding a briefcase on a Friday morning. He'd have a job.

De La Rosa, once a carpenter who couldn't get work because his prices were undercut, blames undocumented workers.

"They would do it for $200 less and they would get the job instead of me," said the Oak View resident who has been unemployed since October and is now looking for work in sales. "All they want to pay is $10 an hour because they can get these immigrants in there for that much."

But $10 an hour would disqualify De La Rosa from food stamps and Medi-Cal. He'd still have to find a way to pay rent and take care of his three kids, ages 14, 6 and 4.

If employers lost their undocumented workers and were scrambling to find replacements, De La Rosa would fill the bill. At the right price.

"Twenty dollars an hour," he said of what it would take for him to work in a strawberry field. "There are people willing to do that work but people are not willing to make $75 to $80 a day."

Without illegal immigration, there would be less demand for housing. An educator worried about losing funding based on enrollment acknowledged that school test scores would likely improve.

The birth rate would likely decrease. The county's median age might get older, increasing concerns about overburdening Social Security. A statewide child-care crisis would grow worse, meaning that parents might have to change their jobs or schedules to take care of preschoolers.

People who came to this country looking for opportunity would go back to other lands. High school students intent on college would instead learn how to survive poverty in Mexico and other countries. Undocumented workers would face the one thing worse than making next to nothing.

"Even if (employers) are paying us the little bit that they are, we're still living better than in Mexico," said Rojas, the landscaper who makes $400 a week.

When he first crossed the border with the help of his cousin, Rojas thought that he would return to Mexico in a year or two. That was 13 years ago.

Now he lives in East Ventura, in a rented home decorated with paintings of Jesus and photos of his wife, Norma Rojas, and her family. Born in Mexicali, she gained citizenship in 1995 and is using her status to petition for her husband's residency.

If he were deported, Rojas would be in Ermita de Guadalupe, the small farming town in Central Mexico where his family still lives. He'd run a ranch with maybe 10 cattle and a few pigs. Maybe he'd open a fruit stand.

He might have to do it alone. Norma Rojas has three daughters from her first marriage who live in Ventura County along with three grandchildren. She would face a terrible dilemma.

"Do I leave my husband or do I leave my children?" she asked

Doctors could leave

On most days, about 100 of the more than 1,500 inmates at the Ventura County Jail are illegal immigrants held for deportation. Eliminate that number and jails with daily populations flowing over maximum limits would become manageable.

Each inmate costs about $80 a day in food and shelter. Without undocumented people in the jail, the county would save nearly $3 million a year, Sheriff Bob Brooks said. That would be enough to hire 30 deputies, revive crime prevention programs, open new storefronts and reclaim a gang suppression program from a list of budget casualties.

Crime would drop 3 percent based on the calculation that each of the detained inmates committed only one crime. Sheriff's officials say drug smuggling would go down because a majority of their investigations involve people who sell drugs to help finance their journey across the border.

Hospitals throughout California spend about $800 million a year on uncompensated care for illegal immigrants, much of it in emergency and prenatal services, said Jim Lott of the Hospital Association of Southern California. Save that money and a hospital mired in budget red might survive. Financially stable hospitals could expand or offer new programs dealing with childhood obesity or other problems.

Clinicas Del Camino Real wouldn't have such options. The nonprofit organization operates nine clinics in western Ventura County for farmworkers and other poor people.

In a county without illegal immigrants, the clinics and its 300 workers wouldn't be needed.

"It would make us redundant," said Chief Executive Officer Roberto Juarez, contending that far more than his clinics would change.

Hospitals might save money on uncompensated care but would have more empty beds, Juarez said. Doctors who specialize in outpatient care and pediatrics would lose so many patients that some would leave the county.

Private hospitals would use the reduction in uninsured patients to argue that tax-funded Ventura County Medical Center would not be needed.

"They could do away with the public health system completely and go with the private sector," Juarez said.

County officials won't speculate on the impact of undocumented patients on public healthcare, but said the county hospital and system would survive.

Muted trombones

Fewer children in schools mean that in some communities, new classrooms and buildings wouldn't be needed. Schools that are crowded now wouldn't be anymore. Keeley of the Center for Immigration Studies, an advocate for restricting immigration, argues that government would spend millions less on teaching students whose primary language is not English.

But because districts get funding based on enrollment, life without undocumented students could mean less money. In the Fillmore Unified School District, every student deported would mean $5,126 less in state funding.

School officials say they have no way to know how many students they'd lose. But about 1,000 students are enrolled in a migrant education program. If 70 percent of the children were undocumented — a speculative estimate for undocumented students in Ventura County schools from a 2003 report — the district would lose $3.5 million.

That could mean closing a school, Superintendent Mario Contini said. About 20 or more teachers might not be needed. Those savings would offset some of the loss, but the district would likely have to cut more.

That means that the elementary music program would likely go. The school cafeterias where Janet Bergamo teaches fourth- and fifth-graders to play clarinet, alto saxophone and trombone would fall silent.

"If you aren't a sports person and you aren't a computer person and you like to move to music and you're always humming, where do you go?" Bergamo asked.

But for every prediction that schools, farming or healthcare would change one way, others contend that the exact opposite would happen. Economists and demographers disagree with each other, just as members of Congress do.

The nationwide walkout May 1 may provide more insight, but its measurement will be flawed because the protest will involve legal and illegal immigrants. Taxicab drivers, port workers, truckers and anyone else who supports immigration are being asked to sit out a day's work as well.

"It has become an international action. Rome, Italy, is calling. We're the belly of the empire," said protest organizer Jesse Diaz of Ontario. He said the day is about refuting people who question the impact of immigrants on businesses and the nation's financial health.

"If that is the case, if their argument is sound, then the economy will boom and the stock market will surge," he said before offering his own prediction. "It will be chaos."


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Politics/Elections; US: California
KEYWORDS: aliens; borderlist; california; illegal; illegalaliens; illegalimmigration; illegals; immigrantlist; immigrants; immigration; life; venturacounty; without
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1 posted on 04/23/2006 4:28:28 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
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To: NormsRevenge

Sure costs will go up, but higher wages will trickle down.


2 posted on 04/23/2006 4:32:35 PM PDT by cripplecreek (Never a minigun handy when you need one.)
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To: NormsRevenge
Taxes would go down

Once government has succeeded in getting your money, you can bet they will not give it back, even if the original "need" for the tax has gone away.

I've always thought that any "tax cut", which is always highly publicized, is secretly compensated back to the government by raising a thousand other current taxes by miniscule amounts in a way that no one will notice. Call me cynical.

3 posted on 04/23/2006 4:34:10 PM PDT by Lizavetta
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To: NormsRevenge

A reasonable overview, I think.


4 posted on 04/23/2006 4:37:53 PM PDT by prion (Yes, as a matter of fact, I AM the spelling police)
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To: Lizavetta

We see it happening here ,, it's called a parcel tax, a library tax, a supplemental district fee, a toll fee, you name it, it comes in many forms.. all accomplish much the same and all of course are temporary. ;-).


5 posted on 04/23/2006 4:40:18 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi)
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To: prion
Except that the writer buys into the idea that 11 million people can't be relocated.

All you have to do is round up and deport fewer than a million, send several hundred corporate executives to prison, and make it virtually impossible to get any job other than cutting the lawn, the other 10 million will move themselves.

This is actually going to have the biggest impact on slumlords.

6 posted on 04/23/2006 4:43:37 PM PDT by muawiyah (-)
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To: NormsRevenge

Then use H-2 visas if you are short of agricultural labor, that is what they are for.

We have a system in place. Life will go on.


7 posted on 04/23/2006 4:47:19 PM PDT by bordergal
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To: cripplecreek

The owners of these farms that use illegal immigrants are the richest group of phonies.

They try to intimidate us to believe that cost will go up but that is a fallacy. The only thing that will happen is that these guys will make less money without paying slave wages to these illegal aliens!


8 posted on 04/23/2006 4:49:32 PM PDT by petkus
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To: bordergal

I agree, life will go on..

I used to raise veggies in my backyard and think I can still remember how to plant a seed or two.


9 posted on 04/23/2006 4:56:09 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi)
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To: bordergal
The quota on the H2A ag worker visa is no where near what agriculture needs. Plus, the regulations on the visa are so complex that no-one can conform to it and the quota is never reached.

Mr Grower says, "we need more temp visas"

United Farmworker Union says, "we need more green cards".

10 posted on 04/23/2006 5:06:06 PM PDT by Ben Ficklin
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To: NormsRevenge
Ventura County without undocumented workers would mean

Of course, this assumes that ILLEGAL workers could not be replaced with the necessary number of LEGAL immigrants from Ukraine, Thailand, Ethiopia, Italy, etc. The benefit of spreading the immigration around versus having the majority of our immigrants being from Mexico is that they will quickly assimilate into the American culture. They would have to because there would not be enough immigrants from any one culture to allow them to maintain that culture here (i.e. no Ukrainian shopping, Ukrainian schools, Ukrainian government forms, Ukrainian television, Ukrainian radio, etc.....)

I would be happy to have total immigration HIGHER than the current level of legal AND illegal immigration if it could be spread around. When America was a much younger country, we had immigration MUCH higher as a percent of the population than we currently have. They assimilated just fine. The reason we can't have that level of immigration now is that the leftists have 1) denigrated teaching the greatness of American culture and 2) burdened our country with a welfare system that keeps us from admitting too many people because we would have to support them. I'd rather fix those problems than keep out the millions of people around the world who would join the America culture and make this country great for another millennium...

11 posted on 04/23/2006 5:15:38 PM PDT by Onelifetogive (* Sarcasm tag ALWAYS required. For some FReepers, sarcasm can NEVER be obvious enough.)
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To: NormsRevenge

Rojas says he would only work for $20 an hour, then he proceeds to say that he works now as a landscaper for $400 a week. If that is a 40 hour week, that is $10/hour.
What kind of fuzzy math is involved here???


12 posted on 04/23/2006 5:21:59 PM PDT by ridesthemiles
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To: Ben Ficklin

The quota on the H2A ag worker visa is no where near what agriculture needs. Plus, the regulations on the visa are so complex that no-one can conform to it and the quota is never reached.
Mr Grower says, "we need more temp visas"

United Farmworker Union says, "we need more green cards".""

What the Union is really saying is "we need more UNION MEMBERS...."


13 posted on 04/23/2006 5:23:14 PM PDT by ridesthemiles
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To: NormsRevenge
IMHO, this is an article that covers a lot of illegal immigration bases and is well written as far as I am concerned. Others with greater knowledge of the immigration issue or greater bias may have a different viewpoint and have the freedom to express their thinking on this or other formats.

My biggest problem with the illegals coming here from Mexico is not their primary focus of income from some kind of a job in this great country, but the latent and hidden desire to "Reconquista" the SouthWest U.S. Those that wish to do this are no different from the raghead Islams that want to turn this great country into a Muslim theocracy.

The Mexican government is doing what the English did in the 1600's and the 1700's. They emptied their jails, poor houses, insane asylums and put them on ships bound for the U.S. That reduced their social costs of government and that is exactly what the country of Mexico is doing at this time. A poverty stricken, corrupt, elitist governing, socialist inclined country deliberately pushing their people across the border.

The other concern is with other nationals who come here as covert terrorists waiting for the code word to arrive for them to do whatever they are suicidally programmed to do.

This problem began in 1965 when Ted Kennedy was able to change the immigration laws. The situation today is part of the long range goal of the Fabian Socialists (just do a google on Fabian Socialism) to make the United States part of a one world government operating under a socialist/communist theory of government/economics that the elitists have the mentally perverted concept of how the people of the world should be governed and made to behave.

Solving this problem will not be easy. Although I voted for Bush and would never vote for a DemoRat/Socialist candidate from the DemoRat/Socialist party, I am terribly disappointed in his approach to this problem.

He has screwed up on several issues and this is one of them. I deeply fear that the American middle-of-the road voter, who does not know their ass from a hole in the ground, is going to turn on the Congress in the coming election and convert it to a DemoRat/Socialist majority with Nancy plasticface Pelosi in charge of the House.

Lord help us. We are in a struggle for the survival of the United States as a constitutional Republic that compares with the gravity of World War II.

I wish that I could see GWB being the great leader that we need at this time, but I just do not see him that way. He has really disappointed me and I think the country is going to suffer as a result of his failure to be a dynamic, Conservative President of the U.S.a.

Have a good day wherever you are....
14 posted on 04/23/2006 5:23:35 PM PDT by LaMudBug (Goldwater, Regan, Rush and now Bush ??)
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To: ridesthemiles
"we need more Union Members"

AgJobs is the bill that was written in 2003 to reform the H2A ag worker visa and one of the provisions of that bill was to give the union broad access to the workplace to organize.

More importantly, AgJobs also has the path to citizenship/green card language that makes the worker easier to organize. Temp workers are hard to organize.

15 posted on 04/23/2006 5:31:48 PM PDT by Ben Ficklin
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To: Ben Ficklin

Make the employers of illegal aliens pay the full cost of bringing in non-American workers, i.e. K-12 education for the illegal aliens' kids, health care, etc.


You will be amazed at how quick those employers find American workers to do the work.


Illegal immigration is the mother of all corporate welfare programs.


16 posted on 04/23/2006 5:35:21 PM PDT by lsjogren
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To: lsjogren
As the article points out, the farmer doesn't set the price, the market does. If the additional labor costs put his cost to close to the market price leaving no profit, he will just go out of business.

His other option is to move to Mexico and farm.

17 posted on 04/23/2006 5:44:21 PM PDT by Ben Ficklin
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To: NormsRevenge

Sounds like everything would balance out fairly well. And the best part is: America would be for AMERICANS again.


18 posted on 04/23/2006 6:25:30 PM PDT by manwiththehands ("'Rule of law'? We don't need no stinkin' rule of law! We want AMNESTY, muchacho!")
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To: NormsRevenge

Hooked on Jose.


19 posted on 04/23/2006 6:36:04 PM PDT by Mike Darancette (Proud soldier in the American Army of Occupation..)
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To: NormsRevenge
When labor is expensive, businesses substitute capital. When capital is short, businesses substitute labor. Econ 101. If the "undocumented workers" all went home tomorrow, it would take a while, but businesses would adapt. They always do.

I heard Bob Brinker today talking about how the government needs to be doing more to make sure we have energy sources into the future. I wanted to scream at my radio. Here we have one of the brightest and most able investment advisors of our era talking about Keynesian manipulation of the economy by the government.

The morons in the giant, bloated government bureaucracy can't even keep our borders secure (a task which they are REQUIRED to do by the Constitution), and he thinks they're the answer to our energy situation.

20 posted on 04/23/2006 6:38:26 PM PDT by Hardastarboard (Why isn't there an "NRA" for the rest of my rights?)
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To: cripplecreek

"Everyone who uses us will see if they need us or not," said Alvaro Rojas,"

Don't let el puerto hit you in los nalgas on the way out, Alvaro. I think the strike will be a big ho hum.


21 posted on 04/23/2006 6:39:01 PM PDT by FastCoyote
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To: muawiyah

That's the way I think it should be done too. Save the money, we don't need a fence.


22 posted on 04/23/2006 6:49:00 PM PDT by stevio (Red-Blooded Crunchy Con, American Male (NRA))
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To: Onelifetogive
The benefit of spreading the immigration around versus having the majority of our immigrants being from Mexico is that they will quickly assimilate into the American culture.

I have been saying the same thing for years. Why only hispanics?

Let's ask GW.

THE "NEW AMERICAN"

We are now one of the largest Spanish-speaking nations in the world. We're a major source of Latin music, journalism and culture.

Just go to Miami, or San Antonio, Los Angeles, Chicago or West New York, New Jersey ... and close your eyes and listen. You could just as easily be in Santo Domingo or Santiago, or San Miguel de Allende.

For years our nation has debated this change -- some have praised it and others have resented it. By nominating me, my party has made a choice to welcome the new America.

As I speak, we are celebrating the success of democracy in Mexico.

George Bush from a campaign speech in Miami, August 2000.

You can read the speech here.

Here is an excerpt of a good critique of that speech:

In equating our intimate historic bonds to our mother country and to Canada with our ties to Mexico, W. shows a staggering ignorance of the civilizational facts of life. The reason we are so close to Britain and Canada is that we share with them a common historical culture, language, literature, and legal system, as well as similar standards of behavior, expectations of public officials, and so on. My Bush Epiphany By Lawrence Auster

23 posted on 04/23/2006 6:55:24 PM PDT by raybbr
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To: LaMudBug
None of my ancestors were crazy people, and the few who came here on prison barges were simply POWs taken in an English military campaign against the Scots.

Now, when you get to the Welshmen, there were a few lead coffin-cover recyclers in the mix, but just a few ~ nothing to get excited about! .... That's it, EARLY environmentalists ~ that's the ticket!

24 posted on 04/23/2006 6:55:37 PM PDT by muawiyah (-)
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To: muawiyah
All you have to do is round up and deport fewer than a million,

It's even easier than that, just have one or two high profile raids a week including employers doing the perp walk. Then have the head of ICE come on TV to ask the public to help in finding illegal employers.

This will scare those that hire illegals so bad that the jobs will virtually dry up overnight.

Then you can offer free transportation to the point of entry of their choice.

25 posted on 04/23/2006 7:00:52 PM PDT by Mike Darancette (Proud soldier in the American Army of Occupation..)
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To: muawiyah
None of my ancestors were crazy people

Some of mine were run out of England after Charles II had one of them hung, drawn and quartered then had his head decorate the min gate.

It was time to become an immigrant at that time there were no illegals.

26 posted on 04/23/2006 7:08:29 PM PDT by Mike Darancette (Proud soldier in the American Army of Occupation..)
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To: stevio

"That's the way I think it should be done too. Save the money, we don't need a fence."

We need the fence from the pacific to the gulf in order to free up 2/3 of the border patrol to go after employers.


27 posted on 04/23/2006 7:10:00 PM PDT by dalereed
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To: Ben Ficklin

That's funny. I know a farmer down the street from me who seems to make it work every year.


28 posted on 04/23/2006 7:10:56 PM PDT by bordergal
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To: NormsRevenge
Or they'd develop machines that can help harvest citrus or even strawberries by shaking the fruit free.

Author of this article should get out of the office more. Then he would realize strawberries don't grow on trees. Pick a lot of strawberries when a kid sure didn't get $10 and hour. Most I was ever paid was 6 cents a box.

29 posted on 04/23/2006 7:13:02 PM PDT by jerry639
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To: Onelifetogive

Excellent point.


30 posted on 04/23/2006 7:14:28 PM PDT by FreedomPoster (Guns themselves are fairly robust; their chief enemies are rust and politicians) (NRA)
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To: NormsRevenge
I still raise a good size garden every year. Anything you can't remember about gardening just ask.
Won't be needing any lettuce or tomatoes here. Have lettuce already growing. Tomato plants are ready as soon as the ground dries from our latest heavy rain. White half-runner beans will be planted 1st week in May. We have strawberry patch close where you pick your own so we will be visiting those before long. Will buy sweet corn from local farmer. About 4 to 6 bushel will do me the rest of the year. We fill up 2 freezers each year with veggies and venison. Can our own tomatoes and juice. Grapes will be ready later own. Make our own jelly.
Sure don't believe we will be doing without if all the illegals go home or are sent home.
I love to mow. Have 2 riders and 2 trim mowers. Won't be needing them for that work either.
31 posted on 04/23/2006 7:25:24 PM PDT by jerry639
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To: jerry639

all my lawn is barked over,, :-)

I have a niece that has veggies about 6 months a year and plenty of them.

I stopped growing stuff years ago cuz we had a lot of cats taat fashioned themselves "gardeners" too. ;-)


32 posted on 04/23/2006 7:27:05 PM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi)
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To: LaMudBug

Well written post with which I agree.


33 posted on 04/23/2006 7:28:56 PM PDT by jerry639
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To: LaMudBug
The Mexican government is doing what the English did in the 1600's and the 1700's. They emptied their jails, poor houses, insane asylums and put them on ships bound for the U.S. That reduced their social costs of government and that is exactly what the country of Mexico is doing at this time. A poverty stricken, corrupt, elitist governing, socialist inclined country deliberately pushing their people across the border.

This is why we need to adjust our policies toward Mexico. Regime change in Mexico NOW. Until Mexico can show effective measures at border control- on their side -we should impose harsh economic sanctions. Requesting Americans to give up liberties is misguided. We must demand accountability of the USCIS, CBP, and ICE. But after we demand accountability of Mexico first. This is a Mexican government supported, encouraged, and subsidized wave of immigration. American interests must be placed ahead of Mexican interests.

34 posted on 04/23/2006 7:35:44 PM PDT by ARealMothersSonForever (Political troglodyte with a partisan axe to grind)
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To: bordergal
One?

Just out of curiosity, do you live on the border?

35 posted on 04/23/2006 7:38:45 PM PDT by Ben Ficklin
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To: NormsRevenge

I am trying a new system called a "Topsy Turvy". I bought 2 stands that each have 4 hooks. I am growing 4 tomatoes, a cuke, a pepper, a zucchini and a yellow squash upside down.
No staking or weeding, just watering, fertilizing and harvesting. Still growing some in my raised beds, but if these really do well, I will get several more next year. I have squash that should be ready in week or two, and my tomatoes are blossoming. :)


36 posted on 04/23/2006 9:01:05 PM PDT by Politicalmom (Must I use a sarcasm tag?)
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To: NormsRevenge

If you do away with illegal produce pickers, then industry with develope an automated machine that will work cheaper, longer hours, needing no sleep or lunch breaks that can do the job better.


37 posted on 04/23/2006 9:58:33 PM PDT by Chewbacca (Hell knows no fury than fiery habenaro Dorito's eaten before bedtime.)
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To: ARealMothersSonForever
Regime change in Mexico NOW.

The USA PROBABLY should have annexed Mexico as part of the Mexican-American
War.
But, I suspect that Polk and our commanders said "why would we want
to take over a place that's been defeated TWICE by basically
large special-ops attacks?"

I was suprised that PBS's show on the Mexican-American War emphasized how
the USA forces landed and marched up the same road that Cortes took...
and they still couldn't stop the USA forces of less than 10,000 from
taking Mexico City (over a million population).
38 posted on 04/23/2006 10:13:32 PM PDT by VOA
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To: Chewbacca
If you do away with illegal produce pickers, then industry with
develope an automated machine


Yes indeed.
The last months with the protest marches has shown me why the Agricultural
Engineering department (at the Big 12 school I attended) was such
a moribund affair.
We were too busy importing a cheap, de facto slave population for
decades and thus didn't have time/money to really automate agriculture
as we should have.
39 posted on 04/23/2006 10:16:33 PM PDT by VOA
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To: Onelifetogive
Of course, this assumes that ILLEGAL workers could not be replaced with the necessary number of LEGAL immigrants from Ukraine, Thailand, Ethiopia, Italy, etc.

Exactly. And since the liberal like to whine about things not being 'fair', having legal immigrants from many different nations would be fair to all.
40 posted on 04/23/2006 10:36:11 PM PDT by Serenissima Venezia (Stop the “No Illegal Alien Left Behind Act” – call/email/fax/write your Senators today!)
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To: NormsRevenge

I think one of the best benefits would be that instead of spending so much money educating children that can't even speak English and who, most of the time, don't get the help at home they need with their schooling, more resources could go towards the upper level kids for a change. Our education system needs revamping as well, with more emphasis on encouraging the smart kids to study math and science. All the emphasis these days is on helping the bottom feeders move up a teeny tiny percentage.


41 posted on 04/23/2006 10:39:24 PM PDT by Serenissima Venezia (Stop the “No Illegal Alien Left Behind Act” – call/email/fax/write your Senators today!)
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To: ridesthemiles
Rojas says he would only work for $20 an hour, then he proceeds to say that he works now as a landscaper for $400 a week. If that is a 40 hour week, that is $10/hour. What kind of fuzzy math is involved here???

You are confusing AMERICAN former carpenter, Rich De La Rosa, with ILEGAL IMMIGRANT landscaper, Alvaro Rojas.

No fuzzy math involved.

Deport them all, and let Vicente sort them out!

42 posted on 04/24/2006 12:26:44 AM PDT by ApplegateRanch (Islam: a Satanically Transmitted Disease, spread by unprotected intimate contact with the Koranus.)
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To: Ben Ficklin
If the market sets the price of the commodity, then why do Mexican farm workers have to come here to get a decent wage? Mexican farmers, who sell across borders, have the same market pressures & price structure, so why can't Mexican farm workers demand and receive a comparable wage? Who is getting rich? Who is facilitating that?

Why isn't something being done on that end? Or is it a case of Narco-politoces get the beans, and the peasants get the gas pains?

I'm actually in favor of welfare for illegals: Give every one who illegally crosses the border a free rifle, a box of ammo, and a Spanish language copy of our founding documents; and then point him back south.
43 posted on 04/24/2006 12:41:19 AM PDT by ApplegateRanch (Islam: a Satanically Transmitted Disease, spread by unprotected intimate contact with the Koranus.)
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To: VOA

1968 Berry Good Picking Engineers release the first prototype of a mechanical strawberry harvester

http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qa3838/is_200505/ai_n13637136



On December 10, 2002 the Michigan State Horticulture Society (MSHS) presented the Grower Service Award to Richard Ledebuhr for his contributions to the success of Michigan's vegetable and fruit industry at the Great Lakes Expo.
...[snip]
Richard assisted in the assembling of the original double bar sickle adopted for trimming fruit trees and then in the 1980's modified it for grape trimming. He helped perfect the first mechanical strawberry harvester and the modification of strawberry processing equipment. He also worked on cucumber harvesters and improvement of potato storages before he turned his attention to better sprayers to effectively deliver pesticides to the target.

http://www.egr.msu.edu/age/aenewsletter/1_jan_feb_03/ledebuhr1_30.htm


Adjusting to Technological Change
in Strawberry Harvest Work
byHoward R. Rosenberg

A machine used by many Ventura County strawberry firms in 2003 holds economic promise
for adopters throughout California. While significantly reducing the amount of labor needed in the harvest,
it alters the jobs of crew members and raises several key questions for human resource managers...[snip]
Use of a recently developed machine by many
strawberry growers in Ventura County this year
exemplifies the potential of new technology to
substantially reduce work hours and costs. The
machine will not have an impact comparable to
that of the tomato harvester or cotton gin, but it
can cut the amount of human work time needed in
strawberry harvest, which is one of the most laborintensive
operations in agriculture, by one-third or
more...

http://www.agecon.ucdavis.edu/uploads/update_articles/v7n1_2.pdf


Note that this last specifically cites Ventura County.


44 posted on 04/24/2006 12:54:35 AM PDT by ApplegateRanch (Islam: a Satanically Transmitted Disease, spread by unprotected intimate contact with the Koranus.)
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To: ApplegateRanch

Thanks for the updates on automating agriculture.
I know there are innovations, but my point is that as long as there
are cheap illegal laborers, it appears that growers are loath to
invest the capital for going full-tilt into automating as much of the
process as possible.

And who could blame them? If they did, they might encounter vandalism
of machinery by their laborers who think they see one of the few jobs they
are qualified for simply disappear.
It wouldn't be the first time luddites wrecked "the looms".
And they might get boycotts from pressure groups (La Raza) for dispossessing
their workers.

Economically, there may just not be the incentive to make technology king
of the harvest.

And I just finished up ten years in Los Angeles. Every time I'd go up
the 101 to Ventura, there seemed to be just about the same number of folks
crouched over in the fields doing the dirty jobs. Maybe it's changing,
but not that I could notice.

I'll be the broken record and say again: many employers of illegal laborers
are todays Old South planters. They want to take the cheap, subsidized
route of illegal labor rather than spend for that new-fangled, complicated
D-mned Yankee technology.
Who says history doesn't repeat itself?


45 posted on 04/24/2006 6:36:11 AM PDT by VOA
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To: ApplegateRanch
Let me respond to your question with another question.

Why are the labor rates in China lower than those in Mexico?

46 posted on 04/24/2006 6:45:20 AM PDT by Ben Ficklin
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To: Serenissima Venezia

If you want to do your part in counter protesting the May 1, 2006 illegal immigration boycott against America, do your Christmas Shopping on that day. If the illegal immigrants and their activists won't shop, let us shop in the name of patriotism. Wouldn't you love to see the look on their faces when they see they were not even missed.


47 posted on 04/24/2006 7:45:49 AM PDT by Edie
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To: NormsRevenge
BTTT

"Or they'd develop machines that can help harvest citrus or even strawberries by shaking the fruit free."

Shake, shake, shake that strawberry tree

48 posted on 04/24/2006 10:14:54 AM PDT by hattend (Gotta turn up the heat on the damn melting pot. Some stuff looks like it doesn't want to melt.)
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To: VOA

There was a debate in congress about whether or not to take all of Mexico after the Mexican War. When the decision was made to only keep what is now the southwest and let Mexico keep pretty much what it has today it was based on the following reasons:

The vast differences between the cultures.
Language barrier.
Corruption and unrest among the population; Mexico had to deal with many revolutions and mini-revolutions, widespread civil unrest.
Widespread poverty among the population.

The main reason it took New Mexico and Arizona so long to become states is because of the same issues, both NM and AZ had to prove to congress they had overcome those problems before being admitted as states.

It seems the politicians then understood what problems could arise if you take on a large population of people who don't basically think the same way you do- it's a shame most don't understand that today.


49 posted on 04/24/2006 10:42:30 AM PDT by Tammy8 (Build a Real Border Fence, and enforce Immigration Laws!!!)
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Comment #50 Removed by Moderator


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