Skip to comments.WHAT DOES DAVE BRAT MEAN BY ‘AMNESTY’?
Posted on 06/18/2014 8:01:31 PM PDT by Bratch
The lesson of Dave Brats victory over Eric Cantor last week is being missed: In all pundits talk about immigration, no one has stopped to point out that Brat boldly grabbed the third rail of American politics, ripped it off the tracks, and beat Cantor with it.
George W. Bush, Michele Bachmann, and Rick Perry all rhetorically touched entitlement programs and lived, but Ive never seen a politician tell the plain, actuarial truth the way Brat did and get rewarded for it. Republicans should be overjoyed that they can finally shout about underfunded social programs. Instead, the only lesson theyre learning is that the candidate who loses is the one whos amnestiest.
Add up Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and the Bush prescription drug plan, Brat told his audiences, and you get $127 trillion in unfunded liabilities. Unfunded thats not the cost of the program, thats just the unfunded part in law. Right? All these programs are insolvent. Theyre bankrupt. We cant pay for them. By 2048, not that far off, those four programs alone take up the entire federal budget, the entire federal budget. So no more military spending, no more judiciary, no more anything.
Has any leader that you know on the Republican side or on the Democrat side mentioned that number to you, in public? he asked. I havent heard anyone ever say yes at a talk yet.
In one video of a Brat appearance, the bald and graying heads in the audience that had been nodding along go still when he hits those points. But they voted for him anyway, voted for the man who didnt tell them what they wanted to hear. Thats impressive, and makes it hard to dismiss Brat by saying that his version of RINO-bashing is just a new take on the old Washington-is-broken, throw-the-bums-out method of campaigning.
Now, Im as thrilled as anyone to see liberty-minded conservatives hold a double-talking,big government Republican like Eric Cantor accountable. But the message theyre trying to send keeps getting confounded by immigration politics.
Plenty of Tea Party folks tack immigration onto their list of Constitutional and fiscal concerns. But can Brat really do the same without undermining himself? An economist by training, Brat identifies with the Milton Friedman/Chicago School; he preaches free markets, denounces crony capitalists, and promises to unflinchingly uphold the Republican creed. Then he makes himself ridiculous by trying to explain his position on immigration in those terms.
The idea that opposition to immigration, legal or otherwise, is somehow the authentic Republican position is arrant, ahistorical nonsense, and its especially pharisaical coming from a free marketer. The Republican Party was formed in 1856 as an alternative to the anti-immigrant Know Nothing Party and the pro-slavery politics of Franklin Pierces Democratic Party. The call to attend the first Republican National Convention went to out to everyone who favored limiting or abolishing slavery and restoring the action of the Federal government to the principles of Washington and Jefferson.
The name of the party was meant to reflect those republican principles of the founders. James Madison Brats a big Madison fan defined the republican principle specifically as a limit on the sort of factionalism that we would now call the tyranny of the majority. In Federalist No. 10, Madison argued that in a democracy the majority, having such coexistent passion or interest, must be rendered, by their number and local situation, unable to concert and carry into effect schemes of oppression on their fellow citizens.
The native-born children of illegal immigrants have the exact same claim to citizenship that anyone else does: Section 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment. Redefining the Constitution to eliminate "birthright citizenship" would create out of them an underclass of stateless refugees. You might want to deport them, but what obligation would any other nation have to admit these American strangers? To me, that is plainly a scheme of oppression against a class that has always been recognized as American. It is, in other words, anti-republican.
Brat leveled the always malleable charge of amnesty against Cantor for favoring a path to citizenship for the children of illegal immigrants brought here at a young age by their parents. Hes got something of a point here, especially speaking for a party that stands for law and order. Still, amnesty means a pardon for a conviction, and Im not sure what syphilitic idea of justice could convict children for the sins of their parents.
Brat works his opposition to illegal immigration into his general theme of opposition to crony capitalism. That juxtaposition has drawn a lot of attention for its novelty, but it would be more effective, or coherent at least, if he wasnt trying to argue that restricting the labor pool was somehow pro-free market. Big business gets the cheap labor and the rest of us pick up the tab, Brat says.
Milton Friedman would laugh at Brats complaint about immigrations (brief, barely discernible) depressive effect on wages. A better summary is that big business gets the cheap labor and the rest of us pick up the cheap products and services.
Of course businesses would prefer to pay lower wages rather than higher wages,Friedman once told someone making a similar point. Youd like to pay lower prices for the things you buy rather than higher prices. Of course. Thats the whole system. Thats exactly the system.
Brat aligns himself with Friedman, but Friedman was in favor of illegal immigration, owing to the massive productivity gains it produces. Look, for example, at the obvious, immediate, practical example of illegal Mexican immigration, Friedman once said. Now, that Mexican immigration, over the border, is a good thing. Its a good thing for the illegal immigrants. Its a good thing for the United States. Its a good thing for the citizens of the country. But, its only good so long as its illegal.
Free immigration, as the U.S. had before 1914. was a good thing, too, Friedman added. The problem with unrestricted immigration today, as he famously said, is that you cant have free immigration and a welfare state both.
So heres an idea, one the Democrats usually reject out of concerns for equality, but one that I think a lot of immigrants would accept. How about a path to permanent legal guest worker status, not citizenship? Workers would pay payroll taxes, and be eligible for no benefits and no citizenship. Thered be some fraud, but the taxes could be set to cover the cost.
What would happen, for instance, when the Democrats start beating the Republicans over the head with the heartless club?
Or when a liberal judge decides these "undocumented workers" have the same rights as citizens, Congress be damned?
Any step that doesn't include border enforcement and repatriation is amnesty. Period.
Yes, the democrats have used the 3rd rail as an effective tool in politics. And that tactic could work for another decade.
But leadership is seeing coming problems and have the courage to solve them. History teaches us that previous great empires before, met their demise through over spending, unaffordable debt and foreign military adventures on borrowed money.
Dave Brat the economics professor sees the disaster coming at us like a freight train. But the powers in DC only worry about the next election.
Amnesty will mark the formal end of the USA as a sovereign independent country with its own language, borders, and culture.
” How about a path to permanent legal guest worker status, not citizenship? Workers would pay payroll taxes, and be eligible for no benefits and no citizenship. Thered be some fraud, but the taxes could be set to cover the cost.”
The cost of what?
The cost of deporting them, which will never happen?
The cost of whatever agency will ultimately be responsible for deporting them which will never do what it was charged to do?
The salaries of the bureaucrats who will administer, corruptly, such an agency?
How about the deterioration in the overall respect for the law?
And the law enforcement efforts required for the extra policing all these illegals require?
And who is going to enforce the conditions under which they are going to be “citizenized”?
Suppose they promise to learn English. Will they be deported if they do not? Or will be then undertake large programs designed to teach them English?
And what if they do not pay taxes. Will they be deported if they do not pay taxes?
What the costs of inoculating hundreds of thousands of people against disease that were generally consider eliminated from the US? Now we have measles, scabies, and other treats running around. Treating that/those is free, right?
Dope isn’t legal here in Texas, so how’d Jon Cassidy get his?
Has it occurred to this author what's left of middle America have got a belly full of government pandering, lies and deceit?
Has it occurred to Mr. Jon Cassidy we're becoming more outnumbered daily, by tens of millions who entered illegally and continue to do so?
This after 30+ years of American voting, begging screaming, protesting, petitioning government for relief. To the point where it's clearly undermined and compromised our future and the electoral process.
All while government has aided and abetted lawlessness, all while middle America has been forced to subsidize this epic decades long illegal invasion to the tune of hundreds of billions of their tax dollars.
This idiot misses the entire point! Without effective border control, we CAN NOT even discuss any form of legalized status. And not a couple months control, years of control. Three to five years of strict border control and strict punishment for those who employ illegals. Not just fines, jail time for corporate officers who employ illegal aliens. Coupled with ZERO, SIP, SILCH, NO form of welfare for ANYONE here illegally and a majority of the problem solves itself.
After a few years, then we can START to talk about some form of legalization. Maybe.
Please. Enabled by liberal politicians they would be at the trough in no time.
You, Mr. Cassidy, are merely singing this week's GOPe amnesty hymn. We don't buy your reality distortion field.
Yep, and Friedman was an idiot on immigration.
Already our nation is only a memory, and the U. S. is just a place to work now.
We built a nation, an identity, a culture, a people, and now it is every man for himself, get what you can while the getting is good, and destroying the host is the cost of business.
This is more like looting than being and American.
Good post, those are the questions nobody asks. We’re not supposed to think of them. We’re being bamboozled.
When you reward something, you get more of it. What happened to the Rule of Law? What is the impact on the native born American worker?
"It's just obvious you can't have free immigration and a welfare state,"
Friedman said that ILLEGAL immigration is the BEST of all.
Today, immigration is destroying us, our nation and culture are being completely erased and replaced and it doesn’t matter if it is legal or illegal, it is too massive.
Whether we have welfare or not doesn’t matter to the 100s of millions of the worlds peasants that want to flood the United States in an endless stream of humanity, do you really think that they look at America and the infrastructure and culture, and the nation we built and think they prefer dirt floors and their peasant life of work to working here and living in an apartment?
With or without welfare 100s of millions would come here if the borders were opened.
The healthcare and education costs are huge.
Once an illegal gets older or injured they won’t leave and them staying isn’t free of charge.
One black robed tyrant could take care of that for the illegals in no time flat.
You nailed that idiot traitor precisely. Well done!
He seems to forget that President Calvin Coolidge advocated a policy of limited, highly-selective immigration. And until Ted Kennedy undid that program of restrictive immigration in the mid 1960s, America prospered.
While most open-border libertarians proclaim a desire to dismantle both borders and the welfare state, in practice what they offer is open borders today and a vague (and almost certainly illusory) promise to end the welfare state in the indefinite future. As Milton Friedman understood, open-border enthusiasts have the sequence wrong: Opening borders with the redistributionist state still intact will result in a larger and more confiscatory government. In response to libertarians who propose to open borders and dismantle the welfare state, practical conservatives should answer: "Go ahead. Dismantle the welfare state. As soon as you've got that finished, let us know, and then we'll talk about open borders."
You are preaching to the choir about the impact of immigration. And I consider our current LEGAL IMMIGRATION policies to be more destructive than the ongoing illegal alien invasion.
If you wouldn't mind, please explain further. Thanks.
“Brat works his opposition to illegal immigration into his general theme of opposition to crony capitalism. That juxtaposition has drawn a lot of attention for its novelty, but it would be more effective, or coherent at least, if he wasnt trying to argue that restricting the labor pool was somehow pro-free market. Big business gets the cheap labor and the rest of us pick up the tab, Brat says. Milton Friedman would laugh at Brats complaint about immigrations (brief, barely discernible) depressive effect on wages. A better summary is that big business gets the cheap labor and the rest of us pick up the cheap products and services.”
The author of this piece must be comprised of concrete from the neck up.
Brag is exactly right. Illegal invasion, backed by the Chamber of Commerce, Tysons, National Restaurant Association, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, etc., etc., is part and parcel of crony capitalism.
The Big Business elites get the benefit of cheap serf labor. And when Brag says “we pick up the tab” he is exactly right. What Brag means by that, which the author is too dense or too deceptive to acknowledge, is that we pick up the tab of free schooling, free emergency room treatments, free food stamps, and innumerable other benefits to illegal invaders that the Big Business elites push off onto the taxpayers.