Friday, August 13, 2010

Border Security Whack-a-mole Continues

So a $600M bi-partisan bill passes to increase law enforcement on the Mexican border and... I suppose that there is a criminal element that is violent and uses that border to create wealth for themselves who really ought to be discouraged. Primarily that involves drugs and that isn't really what drives the illegal immigration furor.

People crossing the border in search of jobs is what it is really about. People are pretty smart about things like fences, they figure out ways to get around that. If the number of illegal aliens in this country is something like 20M, you can be real sure that drugs and other criminal activities isn't what needs addressed. The job picture is what needs addressed. Enforcement of the pissant employment laws is virtually non-existent, employers know that the chance of getting caught out is tiny and the fines small enough to cover with their illegal hire profits.

SS numbers really should be fairly easy to track, verify, and catch contradictions. Dead people and 80 year olds don't work construction. People seldom live in two places simultaneously, that might not be a disqualifier but it should hang a flag. Employment is the magnet and employers are the problem. Lacking real dis-incentives to do so, many will put profits ahead of the law and the well-being of the nation. This country cannot afford to have an illegal serf class socially and workers cannot afford to have labor devalued by cheating.

If I were to try to discourage employers I'd hang a first violation fine of Davis-Bacon wage for a year for each illegal employee, second time fine and jail, third time fine, jail, confiscation of the offending business. That would include an out for having verified the number/employee and notification of denied prospective employees and a corrective method for false negatives. I won't address the idea of guest worker programs, the impacts and methodology are beyond my knowledge level and time at this point.

Now you can judge for yourselves whether the GOP has any real interest in something that would address the problem or they're simply interested in pumping race and the interests of wealth. The one variable all businesses can most easily address in profit pursuit is labor, most other costs are very nearly equal for all. Labor is the smallest single cost in most enterprises that involve a product, but it is the most easily modified in this environment.

There are all kinds of other issues involved in some kind of comprehensive immigration reform that I have neither the time nor interest in dealing with. Issues like amnesty begin to vanish if the magnet itself is addressed and what to do with long term illegal residents really ought to be reasonably dealt with in a humane manner. St Ronnie's amnesty failed badly because no other issues were dealt with - a mistake we ought not repeat.


Anonymous said...

Love the title of this article!!!! What a great game that was. Makes me want to head down to chuck e cheese to play a game. heh

-M. Clark

Jeff said...

Oh stop with your silly reasoning. We don't want a solution we want a red herring dagnabbit!

Funny how the solution is round em' up or build a wall, but it never goes to the heart of the problem - the guys who exploit them with a job.