Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Deja Vu All Over Again

The map of the area surrounding the epicenter of the horrendous Haitian earthquake indicates the borders of a sovereign nation. America is likewise a sovereign nation, with borders and immigration laws. Upwards of 200,000 Haitians have violated those borders and those laws, and Janet Napolitano's Department of Homeland Security has just moved those illegal immigrants closer to amnesty.

Napolitano's Department of Homeland Security, the Clinton State Secretariat, and the great one, Barack Obama, all support amnesty as a general principle for illegal aliens. Following the advice of "let no crisis go unexploited," a whole new set of illegal immigrants is suddenly on the fast track for citizenship as a result of the crisis in Haiti.

Before proceeding, let's get something straight, lest I be accused of being uncaring. The disaster in Haiti is almost unparalleled in the history of the western hemisphere. Nobody deserves this kind of horror, despite the ravings of Pat Robertson and Danny Glover. As the most humanitarian nation in world history, America has a natural duty to render all the aid it can possibly come up with. Simply as moral human beings we have a duty to help people in times of trouble when we have the resources and they don't.

What we don't have is a duty to throw out $100 million of the beleaguered taxpayers' money as a reward to the corrupt Haitian government for its failures. Obama has already done exactly that. Billions of American dollars have already been thrown down that rathole since the Clinton administration. Little of it has ever been accounted for, and nearly none ever got to the Haitian people. The Haitian government was warned incessantly by US government seismologists that Haiti was overdue for a major, devastating earthquake. Much of the money sent over the past ten years was to be devoted to rebuilding infrastructure, building or retrofitting hospitals to stand a major temblor, and medical and emergency food services. It took less than twenty-four hours after the quake to realize that none of that money had ever gotten out of the pockets of the crooked politicians.

None of this obviates the need for the swift action taken by the United States government to assist the victims. Undeserved cash awards from the grandstanding Obama administration aside, the relief efforts will take weeks or months, huge expenditures of time, logistics, physical labor, man-hours and funds to pay for it all. Our costs will be in the multi-millions of dollars, and we won't pinch pennies to get there. And it's the right thing to do.

However, using the crisis in Haiti is a lousy excuse for side-tracking American immigration law, creating a whole new class of "legal illegals," and setting up a previously unimportant class of border criminals for a future amnesty. The legal vehicle for accomplishing this was the granting of an eighteen-month Temporary Protected Status to Haitians who were here illegally at the time of and prior to the earthquake. Napolitano blithely states "It's sort of a time-out for Haitians in the United States who can begin to work and have some resources to send back to Haiti itself." I'm curious exactly what kind of work they're going to find during the big recession, but I suppose government work is always an option.

Napolitano plans on handing "intermediate immigration status" to an illegal population approaching a quarter of a million people. Her advisers told her that Haiti is in such bad shape it cannot accept any deportees. Democratic Senator Bill Nelson of Florida concurs (of course). Says Nelson, "It's the right thing to do. Haitian immigrants already in the U.S. will not only be able to make money to support themselves, but also to send remittances to their suffering families back in Haiti." Perhaps Nelson thinks there are 200,000 openings for poll workers at ACORN or union reps at SEIU.

Current law provides for such temporary status. But the authors never expected it to apply to such a large illegal population, and there are other avenues for protecting the illegals until the situation is stabilized in Haiti. DHS could simply go to Congress and ask for temporary legislation to cover the specific situation without creating a new "working class" to be protected by broad amnesty later. That could include a "special work visa" solely for the Haitians rather than the current plan to give them "temporary work visas" covered by more general law that regularly leads to legalization of previously illegal immigrants who have not complied with all the other requirements of naturalization.

Compassion and sympathy are for individuals, not governments. Creation of a massive new population of protected illegals is humane (which governments should be), but it is also foolish and a gross attempt to grandstand a large group of illegals into sympathetic permanent resident status. It allows an eighteen month window for the pro-illegal immigration, pro-amnesty crowd to develop the usual mantra of "they've worked hard, paid their taxes, and now they deserve instant citizenship." As with the Latin American illegals, we will now be expected to add the Haitians to the crowd whose first act in the United States was to break our law.

As always, we have precious little intelligence on exactly who all these illegals are, what they stand for, how they got here, and whether they have dangerous or terrorist intentions toward the country that negligently allowed them to arrive and stay here in the first place. So it easily follows that the hopelessly incompetent head of a major intelligence agency should grant them immediate legal status. DHS and ICE need to keep a close watch on these unknowns. Napolitano has already stated that if Haiti isn't back to "normal" at the end if the eighteen month period, she could simply extend the legal status for another eighteen months. Haiti will likely never be "normal," but that shouldn't be the determining factor in deporting the illegals at the earliest opportunity. That will not happen during an Obama administration.

FOOTNOTE: The Wall Street Journal editorial staff disagrees with me. It takes the ambiguous "moral obligation" proferred by Napolitano at face value without discussing a way to allow the illegals to stay without creating a whole new amnesty underclass. However, they were nice enough to point out that Haiti's corrupt government received $1.65 billion in aid from the outside in 2006 alone. And the results? See above. As a financial publication I would have thought they would at least question last week's $100 million grandstanding gift from Obama to the Haitian government. The Journal staff referred to this as "temporary amnesty." Temporary? Amnesty? Where have we heard all of this before?

23 comments:

JG said...

I agree, immigration laws - or most any laws - shouldn't be subverted because of a special circumstance. However, I do think some exceptions should be made for children in Haiti who were already in process for being adopted by Americans. More often than not, the reason international adoptions drag over years is because each step requires hundreds or thousands of dollars to be processed. If we were to allow some of those fees to be waived (or to "encourage" some price-gouging agencies to do so) I don't think that would be a usurpation of immigration laws, but it would be a simple, humane way of getting children who may have otherwise avoided being involved out of there.

Case in point, a family I know is in process of adopting their second child from Haiti, the sibling of their daughter. It's down to just forking out the cash, and it took several days before they even got word that he was still alive. Had the fund been available (or not required) he could have been here already.

Mike Kriskey said...

The Wall Street Journal's editorial position is a simple, "there shall be open borders." They'll find some way to approve of any measure that moves the US towards that goal.

LawHawkSF said...

JG: I agree wholeheartedly. No exception is necessary, since the Napolitano action affects illegal immigrants already here. The real problem, even before the earthquake, was the haphazard and dilatorious actions on the part of immigration officials. Call it "death by bureaucracy." The stranded kids are a national disgrace. I even applaud former Gov. Rendell of Pennsylvania for taking the bull by the horns, going to Haiti, and refusing to leave until he had those stranded kids with him. He succeded, he's back in the US with the children, and more power to him.

LawHawkSF said...

Mike: You are so right. The Journal gets a lot right, but on immigration, they're fifty years behind the realities of unrestricted immigration.

AndrewPrice said...

I think that if Napolitano is hoping to create an amnesty, then she's blown it. They might have been able to get this through right now in the middle of the hype -- when you would have looked like a monster to demand that these people be returned immediately, BUT in 18 months, when the emotion is gone and people barely remember the earthquake, they won't have a chance to pass it.


Also, Mike's right about the Journal -- they believe in open borders.

LawHawkSF said...

JG: Oops. I wrote "former Gov. Rendell." I meant "former Philadelphia Mayor and current Governor . . . "

LawHawkSF said...

Andrew: I think you're right. An ongoing temporary status and future amnesty are based on the current makeup of the administration and Congress. It is very unlikely that we will be facing the same Congress (or DHS Director) eighteen months from now. Moreover, the president may very well be a lame-duck by then. The current disarray in the Democratic Party is the most likely reason for them not trying an "instant amnesty" right now. Hope springs eternal in the human breast, as well as in deaf, dumb and blind liberal Democrts."

LL said...

This is another example of Washington politicians and political hacks (Napolitano being one) who don't act in the nation's best interest or according to the will of the people, who are overwhelmingly opposed to this sort of immigration amnesty.

Haiti is an aid rat-hole. If it's administered by the Marine Corps, maybe the poor will receive aid. If it's administered by the current version of the Tonton Macoutes, the poor won't get a nickle or a bottle of water.

HamiltonsGhost said...

Lawhawk--Humane aid is a noble thing, which the US does very well. Throwing good money after bad by sending the taxpayers' money to the Haitian government garbage disposal is a politician's trick, and Democrats and Republicans both seem to do that well.

LawHawkSF said...

LL: I had completely forgotten about the murderous Tonton Macoutte, but I'm sure they're still around, and Baby Doc wants to go back as well.

The government of Haiti is indeed a cesspool which has turned the Haitian portion of the island into an even larger cesspool.

I wonder if the Obama administration will learn anything about shoving unpopular programs down the people's throats after the Massachusetts voter results come in, or if it will simply make them more determined to do as much damage as possible before getting kicked out on their rear ends in the next two election cycles.

LawHawkSF said...

LL: I had completely forgotten about the murderous Tonton Macoutte, but I'm sure they're still around, and Baby Doc wants to go back as well.

The government of Haiti is indeed a cesspool which has turned the Haitian portion of the island into an even larger cesspool.

I wonder if the Obama administration will learn anything about shoving unpopular programs down the people's throats after the Massachusetts voter results come in, or if it will simply make them more determined to do as much damage as possible before getting kicked out on their rear ends in the next two election cycles.

LawHawkSF said...

HamiltonsGhost: The American people are extremely generous. The Democratic politicians are very generous with the people's money. And the MSM is complicit in making sure that the funny-money being given directly to the corrupt Haitian government is conflated with the public and private generosity.

Anybody who questions the direct payments to the Haitian government is already being marginalized as "mean-spirited" and "racist." That's both cynical and untrue. We all want to help victims of natural disasters as much as possible, but it has nothing to do with propping up corrupt governments. I hope that the public will quickly figure out that the administration and the MSM are trying to manipulate them.

patti said...

i haven't looked through the comments (lack of time:) so forgive me if this point has been made: bring them over = can you say democrats = NEW VOTERS?! (too hardened?!) and i am with you law, my heart is with these folks. unbelievable destruction to innocent lives. but there is a better way than to give money to their government with very little going to the needs of these people.

Writer X said...

After having seen her in action in Arizona, I don't believe for one second that Napolitano is doing this to assist victims; it's all about amnesty and future voters for the imploding Democratic Party. She sees this as an opportunity, not a humanitarian effort, which is to say that is how the White House sees it.

LawHawkSF said...

Patti: I think all of our readers have figured that one out, even if nobody specifically addressed it. All illegal immigrants are strong potential Democrat voters, and that party has a long and vile history of utilizing that plan.

LawHawkSF said...

WriterX: I think many of us recognize this as a cynical ploy, but you have the personal experience with Napolitano to be able to inform us of just how bad she really is. Let's hope that all the current trends hold up, and that this attempt will fail.

From your viewpoint, how long do you thing Napolitano will survive in office before the Obamists throw her under the bus?

Writer X said...

LawHawk, I think Barack and Rahm prefer to keep her around because she's incapable of original thought. However, one more major gaffe (which is really a Barack/Rahm gaffe) and they may have no choice but to boot her back to Arizona, where's she's blown any chance at future political office. In short, I don't think she has any choice/desire to leave unless they tell her to.

LawHawkSF said...

WriterX: That all makes sense. The Obama administration doesn't throw people out because they were wrong (or for that matter, right). They are merely sacrificial lambs, permanently prepped for being led to the altar of the messiah. If they embarrass The One, they are on the chopping block, no matter whose fault it is. I'm pretty sure that Van Jones wasn't in any rush to leave, either. LOL

Thanks for the input from an Arizonan.

LawHawkSF said...

HEY, GANG! I smell VICTORY in Massachusetts.

BevfromNYC said...

They just call it for Brown! I don't know if Coakley has conceded yet, but I will check

BevfromNYC said...

1886 precincts reporting out 2168 reporting Brown leading 52% to 47%

BevfromNYC said...

SHE CONCEDED!!! BROWN WON!!! Now what do we do??

LawHawkSF said...

Bev: This is just about as sweet a victory as I could possible have dreamed up on a very optimistic day. This is huge! Not even a squeaker.

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