Peder D4

Discussion of politics and other odious things

Saturday, June 30, 2007


I haven't posted much on immigration, mostly because my own views don't match either of the two major viewpoints. I recognize the danger of large unassimilated populations within the US but I think the Hispanic communities are (mostly) assimilating more than they're given credit for. That's true in Minnesota at least. The story may be radically different in southern California, Texas and Florida.
The other side of the coin is that border security is an important thing. Every nation has the right to protect it's own borders and the right to decide who and who can't come in. That's probably the biggest piece of sovereignty along with deciding it's own laws. If those laws limit the amount of immigration, than so be it.
On the labor front I think the positive impact of 12 million illegals is overstated. On the other hand, we've enjoyed low unemployment for a number of years so they aren't flooding the labor market. And if they disappeared tomorrow, it'd cause a big hole in the economy. This probably argues for an increase in the legal amount allowed.
What brought this to mind was a piece by Peggy Noonan on how we become American. She comes from an east coast, melting pot frame of reference that I think is a useful guide to how should continue.
This is the way it goes in America. You start as the Outsider and wind up the Insider, or at least being viewed as such by the newest Outsiders. We are a nation of still-startling social fluidity. Anyone can become "American," but they have to want to first.
There's obviously a huge number of people who want to become 'American' in the best sense of the word. That's a good thing and we should be working on ways to encourage them.


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