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I am tired of dealing with pro-immigrant leaders who are always eager to repeat again and again the same mistakes, no matter the results, just because they like to hear their names cheered by a multitude that, trusting their mediocre leadership, goes to the gallows to be seduced by grossly ineffective tales. Each day people die in the desert or see their lives destroyed not because they demonstrated a bad character but because they were caught in a raid to enforce a law that would have granted them legality, in the overwhelming majority of cases, only if they had been born in the right family or country. [Imagine yourself unable to work on certain fields, or studying certain careers, or getting a driver’s license unless you had been born in certain states]. Even though some illegal immigrants do not deserve to be here, there is still a lot of blood to garnish the vanity of these mediocre leaders.
If I had to choose a variable that need urgent change, that variable is leadership, the kind of leadership that seeks to learn and lead instead of to seduce the leaded to indulge its own hollowness. How this entry began? With the report ‘Closing the Gap.’

  1. Yesterday I was watching in ‘the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer’ the report ‘Closing the Gap.’ Julian Betts and Gordon Hanson, two economist interviewed for the report, practically coincided in depicting young immigrants as a cheap commodity, as a standardized sub-achiever ethnic group unable to accumulate the skills needed in the twenty-first century high tech economy. Unfortunately, the Superintendent of schools of San Diego had some data that seemed to support that picture: only 25% of Hispanic graduates could meet the University of California’s minimum requirements. That percentage was 50% in other groups. Among Hispanic graduates, only 1 in 16 got a college degree. Among whites that ratio was 1 in 3. Interviewed, one student, surrounded by friends with sarcastic or defiant faces [faces that could have appeared in the cover of a reggaeton CD under the title ‘We take pride on our ignorance’ or ‘Honoring our stereotype’], turned her sarcastic face into a sad one to say that the reason of academic failure was family problems. Family problems, fear of failure, unfair conditions, bigotry, underfunded schools, in this picture, lose part of their power as arguments and look as lame excuses. It is also hard to talk about family values when these young Hispanics seemed to be on their own. Then a teacher, interviewed, said that the main problem was attitude: they had no interest in school no matter how many times they said in the polls to have a higher regard for education than other groups. To the high drop out rate (motivated by an early entrance to the labor market as low skill labor according to the report) you could add an important percentage of young people who never even dropped in.
  1. At nobody’s surprise, schools of poor neighbors are centers were poor people are taught to be poor and good part of these schools’ poverty is its property taxes-based funding. Nevertheless, you will hardly gain the support and credibility to push for a change in the right direction if you not only does not look deserving of more resources and opportunities but also look happy with your stereotype. [See my entry ‘The Children of Prejudice’]
  1. In my entry ‘The pro-immigrant movement. Necessity of having a strategy on immigration now,’ I criticized the so-called immigrant leaders, especially in the Hispanic Community. In this entry I want to add the names of at least two more groups: America’s Voice and Immigrant’s List. I am really tired of people telling me that they cannot embrace a comprehensive strategy because their charter and tax status does not allow them to do so. If your charter and/or tax status does not allow you to take the steps you need to succeed, create a new organization that does or change your status because it is ridicule to embrace an organization whose characteristics you yourself admit will not let you do what you need to succeed. If the problem is your charter then what do you have that organization for?! To justify a salary?! Other moronic answer I am tired to find is ‘Yeah, we admit that what we have done before doesn’t work but we have already offered contributions to campaigns and they don’t want them.’ Are you surprised? If candidates take your money, their opponents will expose them. They would not fear exposition if the positioning of the pro-immigrant movement were good but the irresponsibility of organizations like Casa de Maryland and Consejo Nacional de la Raza has made a terrible damage to the immigrant’s image. Then I have heard ‘We are promoting the Latino vote’ (what reminds me the promise four years ago of a million votes that never materialized) even though the Pew Hispanic Center have shown that attitudes against immigration are stronger in districts with low Hispanic density [In other words, where you can get more Hispanic votes are places where the attitudes towards immigration are already positive and you need to focus on other districts. In example, a volunteer in Maryland helps very little because his support will not make the candidate win more than once but he could help a lot in Virginia, with persuasion or GOTV tactics depending on the personal characteristics of the volunteer]. The results are what they are. Just in the last three years, new anti-immigrant legislation, no effective organization on volunteer and fundraising issues, misconceptions about immigration positioned in the minds of the American people by the anti-immigration noise machine and, periodically, bizarre dancing-marches with Mexican flags that, like a bizarre army of occupation yelling in Spanish, seemed to validate the most absurd conclusions made by Pat Buchanan. Of course, I am also tired of those organizations that admit in private that all they have tried has failed buy reject any ideas that not lead them to precisely do what they have been doing during these last years. They seem to realize today that 2 plus 2 equals 4 after each failure but then expect to do the same operation and get 16. To be honest, they like the catharsis of the dancing-marches because in those events immigrants, seduced by the easy solutions offered by these leaders, the multitude cheers their names and claps. Do you remember my entry ‘Lessons from 1924 our pro-immigrant leaders didn't want to learn’? Well, expect the following: in the next year and a half the xenophobic Right will push for ‘local enforcement’ of immigration laws but, especially, for some symbolic achievements in federal legislation they could label as ‘enforcement by attrition.’ The so-called immigrant leaders will waste the opportunity to participate in the Congressional and Senatorial elections (Actually, they have already wasted that chance) and will prefer to wait for the Presidential candidates (Yes, I said ‘Presidential’ no matter how absurd it seems in this context to anybody who knows something on this issue) to offer them a solution they like (This, of course will not happen). Of course, they will not waste the opportunity to convoke more dancing-marches to hear their names clapped, to uselessly chase state-level ghosts (the baits the xenophobic Right is going to put in places like Prince Williams, Virginia, to lure them to waste time and money in battles of little relevance) and to take contributions from Hugo Chavez or whoever (Here I am talking about Casa de Maryland, happy to take the donation. Ike Leggett, the Montgomery County Executive, here in Maryland, had the good political instinct to reject a similar donation from Hugo Chavez because it would constitute less a financial help than a distraction once that information reached the hands of the local Right. Of course, our pro-immigrant leaders are invulnerable to experiences like that of Herndon, Virginia) so giving flags for the xenophobic Right to use not deservedly against Casa de Maryland but against immigrants, who will pay the bill at the end with pain and suffering. Once the opportunity gets definitely wasted, the economy will have to adjust to the energy and balance of payments crisis (For those who could watch today the interview to Warren Buffett at CNBC’s Squawk Box, today more and more economists admit what they did not six months ago: that this crisis will be long, like that of the 70s, and the adjustment will be painful. For those who like books, an interesting one to put this crisis in context is ‘American Theocracy’ by Kevin Phillips. In 1924 one of the most anti-immigrant legislation was issued but the net levels of immigration would not suffer severe declines until, a few years later, the Great Depression smothered the labor demand – On the effects on immigration, you can see more details in Roger Daniels’s work "Not like us"). Nevertheless, as the then nativists said that the low net levels of immigration were the successful result of the anti-immigrant legislation and its enforcement, now, when the economy engages in the necessary adjustment, the xenophobic Right will say the same of those symbolic achievements on legislation they will seek to legitimate the sadistic ‘enforcement by attrition’ approach. What you can do next is going to depend on what the economic scenario looks at that moment and that, in turn, is going to depend on the characteristics of the adjustment. In other words: if you do nothing now do not pretend to solve the problem procrastinating later.
  1. The temptation of taking pride on typical dances and tamales is too big, especially when the leadership is mediocre and the environment is heavily conservative on this issue. That misled sense of pride is also very comfortable for the racism that is at the roots of anti-immigrant sentiments because it validates the image of the good savage, genetically poor and incapacitated to learn English, of whom you could not seriously ask real achievements so making justifiable to see immigrants as a cheap commodity. I will never be emphatic enough about this point because it is as if Martin Luther King, instead of fighting the Jim Crow, would have preferred to look tough and talk like a ‘gansta’ with a heavy accent at the entrance of a ghetto. Fortunately, the black community had that debate long before, when Booker T. Washington, embracing a naïve pride on the black subculture resulting from the segregation (something black supremacists of course saluted) lost the debate against anti-segregationist W.E.B. Dubois. While Jorge Ramos has become the reincarnation of Booker T. Washington, in the Hispanic community, the reincarnation of our W.E.B. Dubois is still to come.
  1. It is sad to see, beyond the discourse, how important parts of the Hispanic community seem to despise knowledge, how too many young people prefer to embrace traditions and identities that involve no effort or sacrifice. There is nothing racist in this conclusion. Low-income people in the Mid West have been led by conservatives to vote against their own interest and to consider knowledge elitist. It is almost universal to find that, where conservatism gets strong, educative levels fall, the gap between poor and rich widens and social mobility is less available. [On this point, see ‘What’s the matter with Kansas,’ by Thomas Frank]
  1. On the other hand, we find not only the xenophobic Right, which admits its conservative roots and has as tacit premise that race determines culture. You could not reach Pat Buchanan’s or David Duke’s conclusions without that premise. Unfortunately for these group, their tactics could turn immigration in a self-fulfilled prophecy: Alienating the immigrant community [especially in times where Hispanic media could make more difficult the conditions for integration that were easier to find in the early twentieth century and that manifested themselves even in hard generational conflicts] could deliver it to the arms of demagogues, creating a dangerous path in a few decades, when the Hispanic community gains the numbers to decide elections. Meanwhile, they have successfully scapegoated immigrants and convinced many people that the root of their problems is those brown immigrants instead of underfunded schools, crony-biased fiscal spending, fiscal irresponsibility and overprotected health care-related markets. We find also the comfortably self-deluded Left. There is a growing number of self-claimed liberals that find convenient to believe they are liberals because they are at the losing end of the present conservative status quo but does not hesitate of claiming similar exclusive conditions in a scenario where these so-called liberals are in the winning end and brown minorities are in the loosing one. For these pseudo-liberals, the catch phrase ‘corporate welfare’ becomes useful. This catch phrase, to be true, would require that illegal immigrants were overwhelmingly hired by big business and that big business were the main source of labor demand [Actually, the main source of labor demand is small business and, different from workers and small business, big business can always go easily to China and other countries to get cheap labor, if that is what is decisive for their product’s or service’s cost. For more on this, see my entry ‘Economic myths on immigration’]. [From yesterday’s Bill Moyers’s Journal about China, I remember the question about the 2.3 million jobs the Economic Policy Institute estimates we have lost to China over the last seven years and the hostile position of Microsoft, Nike, Ford, Dell and Wall-Mart to unions in China. Nevertheless for some deluded liberals, nothing is good enough to take the place of ‘the Mexicans’ –immigrants, whatever your nationality of origin- as the favorite scapegoat]. A real liberal’s dream is not one in which a caste of birth (to use JFK’s terminology) is replaced by another caste of birth but one in which the accidental circumstances of having been born in a certain country, family or social class does not impede you to compete to reach your dream and achieve it if you put enough character and talent on it.
  1. Another example of how conservatives have seduced the American people with easy slogans and where the tactics of progressive movements have many times backfired is the war. Many conservatives love to support the John Wayne-kind stereotype they have of the national security. According to that tale, while Americans bought War bonds during World War II and the draft could reach practically everybody, nowadays you support the troops with yellow ribbons, claiming for tax cuts and with shopping sprees. It’s the patriotism of the flag pins. Nevertheless, how could liberals stand to such wave of slogans and deceit when many of them have their own slogans, like ‘corporate welfare’ to exclude immigrants? When they have let themselves to be cornered in pseudo-debates about the war in which historical precedents does not seem to count as if insurgencies were something new? When a Minneapolis bridge collapsed in the winter of 2007 and out of that tragedy liberals do not take the opportunity to change attitudes about taxes but instead stay coy [not to mention the shyness that even many more liberals have demonstrated each time a conservative call the inheritance tax the ‘death tax’]? When each concession is sign of a new concession ahead?
  1. Getting back to the Hispanic community. Is it possible the change of attitude we need. Of course it is. If Felipe Gonzalez, President of Spain and then leader of the Socialist Party (PSOE), taught us something is that when a people gets decided to achieve something, that something is possible. In this case, an honorable place in the European Economic Community (today, European Union). In the 80s, when Spain was seen very condescendingly by its European neighbors, it got the opportunity to get in the EEU but it decided not to take the pet’s place. Spain engaged in a national effort that went far beyond the efforts made by the Santander and Bilbao Viscaya banks to take a leading role in Europe. It was a national cultural effort on which the Spaniards could later take pride. Want a closer  example? The Civil Rights movement.
  1. Update to ‘Michael Gold-fart and the elusive Obama campaign’: Nobody at the Obama campaign seems interested in its sub-Web pages Contribute, Events, Volunteer and Blogs being still blocked at the Montgomery County Public Libraries internet service. To report problems with accessing the Web page, the Web page tells you that you can use only the same Web page that is precisely what is not working. Using info e-mails (that have already reached you) is discouraged. When I finally contacted by phone a volunteer by phone, he promised to open an alternative channel of communication for me [Yes Sunny, I received your e-mail but you never sent me the information I asked you, you never e-mailed me back.]
  1. The attack of the 7 houses is moronic. So what? McCain would not be the first rich person who becomes President and the 7 houses are not going to destroy the aura of sanctity that the POW label has given him. McCain’s former condition of POW has become the default answer to any question because they want to project an image of personal integrity and have been successful in doing so. They know that repetition and opportunity are the conditions of positioning [and Steve Schmidt, the person in charge of the McCain campaign, believes in that]. The Obama campaign has been too soft with McCain but personal attacks to McCain, the POW, are moronic and even counterproductive. You need to attack hard but where you need to attack hard is on the issues and you need surrogates to spread those attacks. In the case of McCain, you need to attack his strengths [Karl Rove’s valuable lesson] through surrogates and occasionally by Obama. McCain’s main strength is national security. Then you need to show, what in a political ad would be, first, the moments when he confused Sunnis and Shiites, and then a voice in off saying ‘Do you think that was the worst?’ and then Barack explaining how the historical experiences available (Alger, Indochina, Vietnam, Kenya, Malaysia, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, El Salvador, Guatemala, Peru, etc.) show that the militaristic McCain’s approach does not work, that it has never bring lasting results. People will not understand the specifics of each case but will reach the conclusion you want: national security is McCain’ strongest point and Barack is in short telling McCain ‘Dude, you do not know what you are talking about; you only have the pose’. Obama must seem to know more than McCain on the issue. Is this enough? No. Remember the first debate Kerry-Bus. As I showed in my entry ‘Michael Gold-fart and the elusive Obama campaign,’ this is far from being achieved. The closest you should effectively get to a personal attack is exposing the opportunity of McCain flip-flopping. The McCain campaign appeals all the time to the McCain’s maverick record (that earned the respect of many people, me included) from the time when he was still a Maverick but when he stopped being a maverick? When his possibilities to get the Republican nomination became realistic. Another effective tactic is linking him to Bush. Yesterday Mark Shields, also at the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, revealed a poll showing that 77% believe that McCain will follow Bush’s policies if elected. All policies? No. Positioning requires repetition, especially in a communications saturated space. If you disperse your attacks among diverse issues, you will waste your most valuable resource, the time people will effectively employ in paying attention to you (despite the fact that, for specific audiences, you can always use specific messages). It is not difficult to choose an issue to stick to. Have you heard the phrase ‘It’s the economy, stupid’?

Originally posted to Alfredo Martin Bravo de Rueda Espejo on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 03:29 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Of course I do... (13+ / 0-)

    "You have blood in your hands"

    If I didn't have blood in my hands, they would be very cold... and I would probably be dead.

    If you mean, you have blood ON your hands.... well, that's another story.

    But first, I have to go and re-read Macbeth.

    Ambassador Trentino: I am willing to do anything to prevent this war. Rufus T. Firefly: It's too late. I've already paid a month's rent on the battlefield.

    by Why A Duck on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 03:32:31 PM PDT

  •  I think you'd have more success in getting (21+ / 0-)

    people to listen if you break this diary up and keep each diary on the same thing. You have a very interesting perspective on Latino issues, but it's hard to understand what you are saying when you go from talking about Latinos and education to jump into criticisms of the Obama website and campaign strategy while claiming it's not difficult to choose an issue to stick to.

    But maybe it's just me.

    "I will fight for my country, but I will not lie for her. " -- Zora Neale Hurston

    by blueintheface on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 03:38:59 PM PDT

  •  You have many valid points, (7+ / 0-)

    and I thank you for sharing them, but you should really make use of paragraphs.

    "The real war will never get in the books." - Walt Whitman

    by otheruser on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 03:40:11 PM PDT

  •  I wish people (0+ / 0-)

    wouldn't illegally crash our borders.  They really need to do it like my mother did.  With permission, legally.

    •  I imagine they would if they could. (5+ / 0-)

      But most find they can only do it like my ancestors did: illegally.

      -9.0, -8.3. History is more or less bunk.--Henry Ford
      Henry Ford is more or less bunk.--history

      by SensibleShoes on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 04:08:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  most of our ancestors... (7+ / 0-)

        didn't have to apply, we had open borders until the 20th century. when racist impulses like the ones we face today changed all that.

        very glad your ancestors got here by any means necessary SensibleShoes.

        bugscuffle, glad your ancestors made it, too, but they are not any better than those who came without "permission."

        we should work to defeat any candidate who steals the Democratic nomination.

        by catchaz on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 04:13:31 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I just figure in the 17th century (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Nightprowlkitty, marykk, nzanne

          my ancestors did not obtain the permission of the then-proprietors of the land to come here.

          -9.0, -8.3. History is more or less bunk.--Henry Ford
          Henry Ford is more or less bunk.--history

          by SensibleShoes on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 04:20:09 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I Figure In The 17th Century (0+ / 0-)

            Neither your ancestors nor the 'then-proprietors of the land' paid federal or state income taxes either -- but hey -- that's just a guess.

            But as long as I am guessing -- I also figure that the 'then-proprietors of the land' were not forced by federal law to pay for federally mandated education for your ancestors and their children, school lunch programs for your ancestor and their children, school breakfast programs for your ancestor and their children, WIC for your ancestors and their children, ESL classes for your ancestors and their children, etc.

            Again, these are just guesses.

            But by all means, let's all advocate for a return to the economic and social policies of the 17 century ... every person for themselves ... we could call ourselves 'The Democrats'. After all, what's in a name?

            <div style="font-size:10px;text-align:center;background-color:#ffd;color:#f33">If the terriers and bariffs are torn down, this economy will grow - G. Bush

            by superscalar on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 07:42:23 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

              That's absurd. To say that today's immigration system is corrupted compared to the system that let Alexander Hamilton come to American does not imply to adopt the rest of the legislation of the XVIII Century.
              On the other hand, it is interesting that Superscalar mentions basically programs related to education. Education is the first tool you have in a modern society, whose educational requiments (as an open and globalized one) are very different from a XVIII Century society, to promote social mobility and escape poverty. It happens in almost all the conservatives who swear they are liberals just because the present conservative status quo have put them in the losing end. It is just like the person affected by racism whose dream is not equality but to be in the winning end with respect to another race.
              Finally, Superscalar, maybe you are not going to believe me but immigration illegality is not genetic. I, as a liberal, dream of an immigration system where visas are awarded basically on merit. That is why I am not for amnesty but for reform. I that very different scenario, many of the lines you use to imply that illegal immigration implies some kind of genetic poverty or tendency to live of welfare would simply have no place.
              To check other cases of labeling and scapegoating, I suggest you to read about the Chinese Exclusion Act and the Jim Crow.

        •  And I Wish the Army Fought As It Did Then (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          and would quit stocking these nuclear weapons.

          Open borders are unfair to the 2 billion people whose lives would all be as good as yours and mine if they could come here too.

          Well, it's a new day. There have to be new policies.

          We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

          by Gooserock on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 04:36:43 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

            Many people, when advocating for immigrants, think only on the immigrants already here, legally of illegally. I also think that that is not fair for all the people who would deserve a chance to come if our immigration system were not that biased to family and country of origin. Nevertheless, many people already here illegally never had a chance to demonstrate their character just because they were not born in the right family or country. That is not fair either, right? That is why I advocate for reform. To see my position, please check my previous entries on this issue.

        •  Cool. (0+ / 0-)

          I'll stop by your how tonite.  Don't know how long I'll stay.

        •  well, except for the Chinese... (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          houyhnhnm, Nightprowlkitty, marykk

          Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882

          Then there were the Know-Nothing nativists  in the mid-1800's...

          "When Bigbad Shit come, no run scream hide. Try paint picture of it on wall. Drum to it. Sing to it. Dance to it. This give you handle on it." Kesey

          by exmearden on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 04:47:14 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Even when we had open borders (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Mine had to come in illegally.  The ship was turned away at New York, Boston and points north until it finally landed in Canada.  He snuck down across the border and into New York.

          If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

          by marykk on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 04:49:46 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  The Issue Of Illegal Immigration Is Not (0+ / 0-)

          but they are not any better than those who came without "permission."

          About bad versus good, worse versus better, it is about whether we as a country choose to have immigration law, and choose to enforce that law, or not.

          <div style="font-size:10px;text-align:center;background-color:#ffd;color:#f33">If the terriers and bariffs are torn down, this economy will grow - G. Bush

          by superscalar on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 07:46:48 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

            Again. Legallity is not morality. Our Funding Fathers fought the legal present system at the moment. The first Christians were illegal because their religion was forbidden. Fugitive slaves and the people who helped them were illegal too under the Fugitive Slave Acts. Rosa Parks would have to be remembered as a criminal instead of a hero because she defied the immoral laws of the Jim Crow. On the moral ground those were deviations from our moral legacy and that is why they could not survive. That moral legacy is based on the idea of repealing the notion of caste and the present immigration system is overwhelmengly based on the notion of caste (family and country of origin). You can get in more detail in my entry 'Immigration. Moral grounds to reform an immoral system'

        •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

          Good point Catchaz. The modern nativists at the Right and at the Left talk about their ancestors coming legally as if the present law were the same as that of Ellis Island.

      •  Bullshit (0+ / 0-)

        It's possible to immigrate legally.  People do it all the time.

        •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

          Typical answer from the xenophobic right: immigrants are a commodity. People can immigrant legally in the vast majority of cases if they belong to the right family or country. That notion of caste is repugnant for the memory of the Founders. On average, the labor market would 400,000 more visas each year to get equilibrium. Those big gaps have been the windows of opportunity for massive illegal immigration.
          Get informed please. Winters grossly evident are not the counterproof to global warming.

      •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

        We can always find immigrants, legal or not, who do not deserve to be here but how many promising, good people whose only fault was to have been born in the wrong family or country have died in the dessert, seen their lives destroyed or been subjected to all kind of injustices? With the present law, Alexander Hamilton, the most important immigrant of our history, would have had to come illegally.

    •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

      I wish the same but first we have to have a moral and efficient system. When in average you issue 400,000 less than those demanded in the labor market and more than 90% of the resident visas are based in caste (country and family of origin), we have the injustice of another Jim Crow before us. I invite you to check my previous entries on this point. There is too much disinformation and many good-faith people have been deceived for decades.

  •  Paragraphs (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    would make all the difference to these tired eyes.

    "I believe that ignorance is the root of all evil. And that no one knows the truth." - Molly Ivins

    by littlesky on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 04:01:40 PM PDT

  •  great post, as always (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    badger, Nightprowlkitty, marykk

    it really is heartbreaking to see the hate pouring forth from anti-immigrant bigots and those who are too weak to oppose them that literally causes people to die because they are poor. those who excuse this bullshit should be ashamed of themselves.

    i don't agree with every word in every post Alfredo Martin Bravo de Rueda Espejo writes, but we are lucky to have him posting here. he has knowledge and experiences on these issues most of us aren't even trying to attain.

    while, yes, this diary is long, and veers at the end, the people who came into this thread on a literally life-or-death issue and talked ridiculous shit about macbeth or the blood in their viewns should all go screw themselves for greeting such heartbreak with laughter and mockery. you think it's funny that people are dying in the desert because of our racist fury? then you're REALLY fucked up...

    we should work to defeat any candidate who steals the Democratic nomination.

    by catchaz on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 04:10:40 PM PDT

    •  Alfredo's special answer for Catchaz (0+ / 0-)

      Thank you for your comment. It proves that at least one person say it right. People who dies in the desert, gifted young people excluded from education, the desperation of people captured at the border for the real crime of having been born in the wrong caste are not a prank. The young Chinese engineer who died of cancer in captivity because the ICE conditioned his bail to him dropping his appeal of the deportation order (We knew of this shameful case thanks to the Countdown with Keith Olbermann a few days ago) is not a prankster sent to school detention. Is a person who will never come back, to whom we will never be able to right to wrong made to him.
      As I said in the entry, there are too many self-proclaimed liberals who are really conservatives dreaming to be in the winning end of inequality; who are really dreaming to be by right of birth in the winning end of another unfair system. It is sad to see them laughing at the pain of so many people. It is also sad to see too many of them to take hand of the labeling and scapegoating techniques of the Right.
      As Keith Olbermann said of that young Chinese, 'We all murdered him!'

  •  Of course I have blood in my hands. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    hhex65, SammyJames

    A quien conoces que no tenga sangre dentro sus manos?

    -9.0, -8.3. History is more or less bunk.--Henry Ford
    Henry Ford is more or less bunk.--history

    by SensibleShoes on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 04:12:22 PM PDT

  •  You tried to address too may subjects (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marykk, SammyJames

    and ended up with a long-winded rant which was difficult to read and understand.

    I would have been interested in a well-edited analysis of the "Closing the Gap" segment of which I only saw part.  Reporting on education is almost always stupid and shallow, why is why I didn't watch all of it.

    Loudest the river, fewest the fish.

    by houyhnhnm on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 04:47:04 PM PDT

    •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

      That was difficult to understand. Ok, I understand, especially in these times, when people prefer the 30" TV commercials and find reading too boring. So, what couldn't you understand? What in the entry did not fit with your previous experiences or opinions? You define part of my entry as a 'rant,' so you must have understood something. Come on, prove your point to all of us. I am not asking you about the report Closing the Gap because you yourself says that you saw only part.
      In some part of my entry, I ridicule some posers saying that they seem to have the slogan "Taking pride of our ignorance." It seems that some others could use that slogan too.

  •  I am half-Hispanic and I really resent (0+ / 0-)

    illegal immigration. We have laws to come here and I just resent the unreasonable demands that illegal/undocumented immigrants make. They act like they're automatically entitled the privilege of US residency and, ultimately, citizenship even though they came here without following proper procedure. That angers me a lot.

    And then it angers me further that anyone who complains about the impact of undocumented immigrants on local healthcare systems, governments, and other agencies is automatically labeled "racist".

    •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

      Not evey law is moral. The Jim Crow wasn't; the Chinese Exclusion Act wasn't; the Fugitive Slave Act wasn't, just to mention a few. America is based on the notion of characteer and the present immigration law overwhelmengly rewards caste (country or family of origin) over character. Let's change the system for a more efficient and moral one and I will be the firt one for enforcing it.
      I agree that many demands made by so-called pro-immigrant leaders have angered many good faith conservatives. I have been the first one in criticizing them. Nevertheless, it is too easy to condemn 12 million people, whose real fault is to have been born in the wrong family or country, for the mediocrity of their leaders. For racist, it is also very convenient. Whether you are racist or just misinformed will depend on your will for inform yourself and form your own opinions instead on chasing convenient labels and embrace easy scapegoating.
      Come on! Better objections! This is not the Rush Limbaugh's show!

  •  I Take Issue with Your 10th Point (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The "attack of the seven houses" was NOT moronic. McCain was asked how many homes he owned. HE COULDN'T REMEMBER!!!!! Do you get that? Who can't remember how many houses they own?! Your house is your greatest physical asset! The country is in a foreclosure crisis and McCain can't remember that he has seven homes?! What a bunch of shit. That BS resonates heavily throughout this country and people get it, sorry you don't.

    Beltway wisdom is an oxymoron.

    by kefauver on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 04:52:06 PM PDT

    •  Agreed! (0+ / 0-)

      Yeah -- that #10 made no sense to me either. I apologize if I was overzealous in criticising the author here, but it smacks of trollishness.

      The more I read blogs like this, the less I worry about Obama clobbering McCain. Intelligent people have recognized trolldom. Trolls are few and far between, and they are effective, but only in short bursts.

      Think about it this way -- if the top .01% of Americans would be affected negatively by an Obama presidency, then that is what -- 300,000,000 to about 30,000? If my math is right, then we have little to worry about.

      Especially given that there are way more Democrats contributing money to Obama than Republicans contributing to McCain. Plus, McCain has to accept the 85 million, while Obama is free to outspend the guy four-to-one.


      •  I Understand. It's Easy to Get Heated Over BS. (0+ / 0-)

        The attack on McCain's out of touch attitude concerning his 7+ houses is a home run. To view it otherwise is just foolish.

        I don't worry either. I've come to find that all kinds of people on this site have the craziest ideas and concerns, not just the trolls. Some people worry way too much. I think Obama will do great. BTW, your math is only slightly off - .01% of three hundred million is 300,000, not 30,000. Still a small minority regardless.

        Beltway wisdom is an oxymoron.

        by kefauver on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 05:54:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

          30,000 or 300,000. Tell me then why that attack has not reverted the tendency of McCain to close the gap with Obama, what he finally has done in the last one. Tell me why in almost all his TV commercials, McCain appeal to his record as 'maverick'. It is not a matter of childishly label me with all kinds of adjectives. If you show me the positive effect of that attack on the polls, do it. The most valuable resource at this moment is time and we are wasting it on the basis of infantile assumtions. Obama needs more thinking people than cheerleaders.

      •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

        Please read my answer to the previous comment. You talk about many things, including fundraising, when the point is the 10 houses and on what should rely a more aggressive Obama campaign. We have already announced vicepresident and the next poll shows us tied with McCain.
        You seem to forget that Republicans have got many blue collar and evangelicals to vote against their interest. Otherwise Republicans would have gotten 30,000 votes in 2004 and Kerry would be president.
        I do not make the polls. Let's help Obama win!

    •  You made it that far? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Si se fucking puede! - Melody Townsel

      by Endangered Alaskan Dem on Sat Aug 23, 2008 at 06:31:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

      Thanks. At last! A second person read the entry beyond the title!
      OK. The attack is moronic because most people didn't get it. After the attack, McCain has finally tied Obama in the polls. An attack cannot be so subtle that nobody gets it. Besides that, people are used to having presidents who has some wealth. Even Obama has one pretty big house. Biden doesn't but it didn't help him get closer to white blue collars than Hillary. Finally, McCain is running on his record as a Maverick. He mentions it all the time and it is very easy to attack his strength on the lines I propose in the entry. If you go by the side of the 'senior moment,' people already know that and that is not McCain's main weakness. On the other hand, his record as POW, that himself and the media remind us all the time, has given him a reforced-tefflon defense against attacks on his character. Otherwise, it would be better to revive the Keatings 5 affair.
      We need more attacks but not of that kind! We're tied now and I want Obama to win!

  •  How is attacking John McCain's house problem... (0+ / 0-) "moronic"?

    I think that it is brilliant. If you seriously prefer McCain, then you must be wealthy. Are you wealthy? If so, why are you wasting your time blogging? You should be doing something more important -- like tending to your caviar farm, or driving from one of your homes to another of your homes.

    Maybe your yacht needs to have its hull scraped. Maybe you need to attend a party at your favorite country club. Or maybe you need to attend a party at your not-so-favorite country club.

    If you are, on the other hand, not wealthy, then you are a disgrace to your country. Please leave and find a different country to poison. We don't need your kind here.

    Thank you.

    •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

      No. I'm not wealthy and I don't think blogging is a waste of time (at least Catchaz got my point). I do not consider myself the gatekeeper of America either. I have volunteered for DCCC in 2004 and 2006 and for Kerry in 2004. I am trying to volunteer in Virginia this time. I don't know how you can come with that long idiotic list of attacks against me when you do not even know me.
      Obama needs thinkg people more than cheerleaders. If the attack is brilliant tell me why McCain has closed the gap with Obama and why McCain is running on his record as maverick. Also explain me, if I support McCain, why I am proposing to attack him where it could be much more effective. Definitely there are too many people who have not reacted as expected to the 7 houses attack [see the polls] and when it is too many people that means that the attack doesn't work.

  •  What immigrants are you (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ballerina X

    talking about? Those who break the laws of the U.S. or those who follow the law, however cumbersome and difficult, in order to enter the country. Only 40% of the illegal population cross the southern border. Most of the people who are in the country illegally, have over stayed student visas, work permits, travel visas, etc. I think that you are purposefully conflating legal and illegal immigrants in order to bolster your hypothesis.
    As to your charge of racism, the following countries represent the highest number of immigrants sworn in as U.S. Citizens in 1998 and this same trend has continued since:
    1.Mexico! 2.China 3.India 4.Philippines 5.Dominican Republic. 6.Vietnam. 7.Cuba 8.Jamaica. 9.El Salvador. 10.Canada. Seems mighty white and racist to me.

    With God On Our Side-Dylan

    •  Alfredo's answer (0+ / 0-)

      This is another of the standard answers of the xenophobic Right. I am tempted to create a FAQ file to just copy and paste my answers:

      1. Whether they cross the border or you overstay your visa is not important for the points of the entry. Recently Keith Olbermann showed the case of a young Chinese who died in the hand of ICE when the ICE refused to release them on bail unless he dropped his appeal of the deportation order. He had cancer and saw his last days in prison. Guilty of having been born in the wrong country. Sentenced to death. This in case you think that only those who cross the border die.
      1. Jim Crow, Fugitive Slave Acts, Chinese Exclusion Act are just examples of immoral laws. An immoral law is one that is opposed to the root values of this country. Character before caste is one of them and the present immigration law, in more than 90% of resident visas, rewards family and country of origin and pays no attention to character.
      1. On average, the system issues 400,000 less visas than those demanded by the labor market and guess who are the most affected by that system! Bingo! Brown people! Most illegal immigrants are brown people. Another great coincidence! You can find on this field as many excuses as excuses were used to justify segregation in the school system before and after Brown v. Board of education of 1953.
      1. Find better excuses. These ones are so old that have beards.

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