Saturday, April 05, 2008

Absolut Provocation

The elephant in the parlor is that the American borders are utterly open. For all their talk about "security," Federal politicians would rather implement the creation of a huge bureaucracy to examine shampoo bottles at the airport than to actually enforce the law when it comes to illegal immigration.

We are moving closer to an Orwellian society with security cameras and an increasingly aggressive police force - all the while aliens pour into the country with no way of knowing who is a rapist or a murderer and who is basically an honest person looking to make a living.

Of course, the legal immigration system is designed to keep criminals out. But the legal and honest route to citizenship is simply a joke. Our Border Patrol is told to treat illegals with kid gloves, and some agents are even serving outrageous jail terms for trying to keep thugs and criminals from entering the country illegally.

I believe there is a vested interest for both parties to keep a large number of illegals in the country. Democrats and Republicans alike are turning a Nelson's Eye to what amounts to be an invasion, a reconquista. Why aren't they protecting us? Why will they sacrifice thousands of American soldiers trying to "build democracy" in Asian lands while the real threat to our national security and way of life is right here in North America?

Democrats, being more amenable to a welfare state, prosper by expanding government programs, and then securing the votes of the beneficiaries. Hispanics are the fastest-growing demographic in the United States - both because of immigration (legal and illegal) and fertility rates. Democrats, eager to explot this changing demographic, play the "diversity" card and push for an easy path to citizenship for those who enter the country illegally. Of course, our overburdened emergency rooms and our multilingual overcrowded public schools belie the feel-good sentiment that "diversity is our strength." Thus, while having utterly selfish political motives, the Democrats play the "altruism" card. They care. They care about the downtrodden. And to show they care, they are willing to spend lots of your money to show it (while you attend a thousand dollar a plate fundraiser to help get them elected).

Republicans, being more amenable to corporate interests, prosper by making Wall Street prosper. Profits increase when labor costs decrease. This is why very little is made in America. Asian labor is much cheaper, and thus creates an incentive to manufacture abroad. Of course, some businesses can't simply be exported, such as American farm work and construction (skilled and unskilled). Since these businesses can't be moved to Mexico, Mexicans can be moved to these businesses. Not only does this decrease labor costs because the difference in the standard of living is so different between the two countries, it has the additional effect of driving down wages overall. Like the Democrats, the Republicans are also eager to put on a sombrero and utter a few words in Spanish while the cameras are rolling - in a display of "compassionate conservatism." And they may even hire an illegal Mexican woman for pennies on the dollar to scrub the floors of their exclusive digs in a gated community.

So, even if for differing reasons, both Democrats and Republicans have a common cause when it comes to un-securing our borders. While they have an incentive to "talk the talk" about immigration reform and enforcement (very few legal Americans are big fans of open borders), they certainly do not "walking the walk" - since they, the politicians of both parties, are the ones with the most to gain by a "y'all come" immigration policy.

Finally, both Republicans and Democrats understand full well that Social Security, Medicaid, Medicare, and any future big-government insurance "solutions" function as a pyramid scheme. Those who receive benefits are propped up by those who work. The system will only continue to work if the population grows, if more and more workers replace the retirees and recipients of health care.

However, with declining birth rates and with a huge wave of baby-boomer retirements coming to a head around the year 2017, politicians understand the dire need to import workers to prop up the ponzi scheme. They will never admit this (Social Security is a sacred cow, and any hint of trouble in that sector means getting clobbered in the next election), but the system is terribly broken. In fact, it is broke. There is no money in reserve for Social Security. Those funds are spent elsewhere, and the American Federal budget is always in a deficit situation (hence the need for "paper currency" that can be devalued at will by the Federal Reserve). There is no mathematical way to keep the "promise" of Social Security. However, with an influx of "new Americans," the collapse can be pushed back for at least another generation - when the current crop of politicians are safely receiving their lucrative government pensions (which are completely separate from Social Security).

Meanwhile, as American historian Clyde Wilson says: "Have a nice day, and press 1 for English."


Benjamin J. Ulledalen said...

Thank you Fr. Beanne.

It is always refreshing to read you stepping outside of the two party box. Very few pastors or laymen would dare to do so. They have been "neo-con'd" into thinking 1.) that there is a significant difference between both major parties and 2.) that the Republicans are their friends.

Keep it up pastor.

Pax Christi,


Benjamin J. Ulledalen said...

What then does the church do with the millions of non-English speakers our leaders have invited into our country? We should still bring them the Gospel, shouldn't we? Does that mean offering Spanish speaking services? I know many Churches have taken this route.

I think a better way for our churches would be teaching them English. It appears to me that this would do them greater good in the long run, by helping them better assimilate into our society.

Nevertheless, it would appear to be an uphill battle. It would be swimming against a tsunami. There are millions of them. It would be such a daunting task.

We live in a messy world. Most of them have come into our country illegally. Even when many have come in legally, it isn't necessarily good for the US or even Mexico that they are here. Regardless of the circumstances, I think we should sin boldly, preach the Gospel, and try to teach them English anyway. Even if we can't make much of a change in the bigger picture, we can serve our neighbors- that is, those who are literally near us in our congregations.

Am I on the right track?

Pax Christi,


Fr. Timothy D. May, S.S.P. said...

You are taking this a bit too seriously. The point of the map is to encourage Mexicans to drink Swedish Vodka. Apparently, if they do, their territory will expand.

Regarding the two party system I have not thought deeply on this since college and have come to the conclusion, at least for now, that it is just as political to jump outside of it as it is to stay within.

Then there is the whole question of non-English speakers. As a pastor to both English and non-English speakers this is somewhat of a non-issue. Technically speaking, if we want to force the issue, all I can say is that the non-English speakers, at least in these parts, have switched to English much quicker than the Lutheran immigrants of old did.

If this is a matter of the Gospel, Church, etc. then language is not an issue. If there are certain political or cultural assumptions that need to be met before the Church is in contact with non-English speakers then I need to push my pastoral sensibilities aside and wake up! (What do we do with non-English speakers who have been members of congregations longer than English-speaking members?)

Fr. Timothy D. May, S.S.P. said...

Maybe the distillers are reading your blog. Here's the latest:

Father Hollywood said...

Hi Ben:

I know a lot of churches have an ESL program as outreach, as well as Spanish language services. I think these kinds of decisions are separate from the political machinations. Obviously, there are different challenges to the Church, but overall, I think the politicians are doing the Gospel a great disservice by encouraging a lack of respect for law and order and by burdening the Church (and all institutions) to become bilingual.

Bilingualism in Canada has been a disaster. When it gets to the point where we need an Anglophone pastor and a Spanish-speaking pastor, that will break many of our congregations.

But, of course, the Church's job is to preach the Gospel to all nations.

I wonder, however, what we should be doing about illegals? Some churches give them what amounts to sanctuary. Is that a form of civil disobedience? When we harbor illegals, we are hurting natives. Our infrastructure simply can't take open borders.

And like I said, I think both parties are being dishonest.

Father Hollywood said...

Fr. Tim:

You're "absolutely" right that they are in it to sell Vodka. But can you imagine an ad that featured a map with Israel being replaced by a map of Palestine? Or how about a map where Poland was carved up by Russia and Germany?

The immigration issue is a hot-button issue here in Louisiana, as well as in neighboring Texas - as we are swamped to the breaking point with illegals.

It is not uncommon to see people wearing "La Raza" ("The Race") shirts, in honor of the organization that openly wants to "take back" former Mexican territory from the U.S. We are also having the Spanish language jammed down our throats.

Immigration can be done in such a way that everyone benefits, but opening the borders and looking the other way as laws are broken is not the way to go.