Thursday, July 29, 2010

Fractious issues of the day...

In terms of conflict between federal and state governments, is illegal immigration going to be to the 21st Century what slavery was to the 19th Century? Does it have that kind of potential divisiveness?

What do you think?


Anonymous said...

indeed. a state powers issue without all the mess of having to deal with that 'slavery is evil' thing. it's funny that a federal judge basically just said 'it's illegal to enforce federal a law that the administration doesn't like.


Sigboy said...

I believe that it does. It all comes back down to States rights, we have been seeing this play out with immigration and the Interstate commerce act. Remember, the civil war wasn't about slavery, it was about State's rights

Anonymous said...

I believe that it could be worse because slaves were not empowered like illegal aliens are now. It could be a catalyst for a multitude of issues against states rights.

Scott McCray said...

It sure seems that way to me - the truly sad part is that this time the Feds have plopped their asses squarely on the wrong side of things.
For me, the key concept is "illegal" - no weasel words can change the fact that illegal means "not according to or authorized by law."
I'm not sure where the current trend of flouting the rule of law springs from, but that particular disconnect from reality is becoming more and more prevalent.

'Tis sad...

D.W. Drang said...

Agree that it could, indeed, get worse, because, despite the argument that "the Civil War was about States Rights, not slavery", other nations stayed out of the war that ended slavery, because everyone at the time (except some non-human being owning Southerners) perceived it as being about slavery.

Mexico wants the American Southwest back. They might just get froggy enough to stir up international outrage against us over this issue. Note that Russia has made noises in our direction about the status of Russian immigrant community, and the Arab world and the dhimmi in the Leftist/LameStream Media axis want fervently to believe that there have been hundreds of hate crimes against Arab-Americans despite all evidence to the contrary.

I gotta get more ammo.

Bubblehead Les. said...

I've said to others for the past several years that we are back in the 1850's, and tensions are building every day. The only question in my mind is what State will be the next "Bloody Kansas"-Arizona, Texas, Indiana? Don't know where, don't know when, but You can't have a Republic being run by Communists and expect things to just to keep on going smoothly. "John Brown's Body lies a moldering in his grave..."

DirtCrashr said...

Except that illegal aliens voluntary put themselves into a kind of wage-slavery and twilight status when they cross the border.
States trying to enforce a Federal law that the Feds refuse to enforce is a handmaiden to assbackwardness.
But the Left will "Never let a crisis go to waste" and use whatever is available at hand to fight Capitalism, from rocks and broken bottles to lawyers and judges.

kishnevi said...

Mexico wants the American Southwest back

How about a compromise? They take California and we keep the rest.

Note that Russia has made noises in our direction about the status of Russian immigrant community

Are you aware that a not inconsiderable number of immigrants from the ex-Soviet Union are not here legally? And that, a larger than average number of those immigrants (both legal and illegal) are involved in criminal activity? (And I don't mean spying for Mother Russia.)

kishnevi said...

Oops, forgot the comment I really meant to make, in answer to Tam's question:

If we have a civil war, it won't be along geographical fault lines, because the questions now don't break down that way. You might have areas clumped together fighting each other--say, New York City sending out troops to bring upsate New Yorkers into submission, aided by a sturdy regiment from Greenwich, CT; or rural areas banding together against the neighboring city. But it will be a lot messier than the last go around.

staghounds said...


First, the Arizona law doesn't solve the problem because it doesn't deport anyone- no State CAN deport anyone.

Second, we're not serious. Do you want to pay to enforce immigration law? There are at least 12 MILLION illegals in the country. We deport about 500,000 a year, almost all caught at the border or voluntary self removals.

Third, do you really want the government(s) to have the powers it would take to enforce immigration law? Starting with the Constitutional Amendments required, and then the practical powers?

Fourth, do you want the war? Let's say that only one in a thousand of those aliens fights.

That's twelve thousand insurgents, on the streets right now.

People who talk about doing something to stop or reverse illegal immigration without great big social and liberty costs are ignorant or lying demagogues.

And it's not slavery, the morality isn't clear.

Heath said...


Tam said...


"And it's not slavery, the morality isn't clear."

Sorry, I meant as an abstract source of friction between federal and state governments, not as a moral equivalent or whatever.

Mr.B said...

Yes, it does, and yes, it will.

Moreso, it is likely to lead to the dissolution of the Republic we call the "United" States.

Expect in the not too distat future that the only thing holding Chicago to the rest of Illinois is the act that downstate pays many of their bills. Same in Indiana with Lake County.

If not handles rightly, this could lead to another civil break in our "More erfect Union".

It is shaping up to be the Socialists Vs the rest of us with the Illegal Immigrant issue as the stalking horse. And we can win only with physical means. They will win in the courts because they have the government.

Only the elction in Nov can change things, and even then, not by much.

Themadlemming said...

Personally, I don't think it would be a civil war like the previous one. I think what we may see is civil unrest and either social breakdown or a serious crackdown by the Federal government. It may start with vigilante groups and protesters and then just go from there.

John Stephens said...

Not the 1850's. More like the 1760's.

Anonymous said...

What needs to happen is that the Federal government be simply ignored. Ignored by the states, the municipalities and, most importantly, by us as individuals.

Stop following every federal rule, regulation and law. Ignore them. If the states and municipalities stop enforcing federal laws and stop sending money to DC, it doesn't matter what the feds do. They become redundant and impotent.

Jon B.

mongo78 said...

The controversy over illegal immigration has more to do with the impending collapse of the modern welfare state. It has more in common with the tensions in Europe over mass Muslim immigration from the Third World than with the 19th century issue of slavery.

Stretch said...

We are as close to Civil War as we were in 1858.
As Kishnevi says this will not be a neat geographical division.
The Federal govt. has abrogated the responsibilities and duties delegated to it by the people and states. It is further more attempting to keep the states (particularly AZ) from enforcing those duties.
I've no doubt that this will end in a clash of arms between:
Federal and local law enforcement.
Armed citizens and Federal agents.
Opposing groups of armed citizens.
If you'll excuse me I have to dust off my brown coat and clean some rifles.

wolfwalker said...

Tam: "is illegal immigration going to be to the 21st Century what slavery was to the 19th Century? Does it have that kind of potential divisiveness?"

I don't think so. The scale isn't the same. Slavery had the potential to literally rip the Union apart. Illegal immigration by itself does not. What does have that potential is the larger issue of the role of the Fed: will it continue to grow, or will it be forced back into the limits described in the Constitution?

That said, I don't believe there will be a civil war, for two reasons:

1) it would be Americans vs. liberals, and Americans have most of the guns.

2) if the liberals try to call out the army/national guard, I firmly believe that a large majority of the soldiers would refuse to obey. I'm less sanguine about the urban police forces that have been trained to think and act like an occupying army.

Groundhog said...

In terms of conflict between federal and state governments, is illegal immigration going to be to the 21st Century what slavery was to the 19th Century? Does it have that kind of potential divisiveness?

It could be the spark that ignites or the straw that breaks the camels back yes. But the issue in and of itself would not have that power were it not for the already highly divided nature of the American people. There is so much in the pot right now that there is no telling what is going to make it boil over. Regardless, the outcome is not going to be pretty.

Hypnagogue said...

Don't confuse the battle with the war. This conflict isn't about immigration any more than 1860 was about Kansas statehood. These are just ideological skirmishes in the broader conflict.

The broader war is over 200 years old: pro-slavery democrats against freedom loving Americans.

Douglas L. Perry said...

At a time when the swamp was supposed to be drained, and everyone was going to now "get along", it seems to me that the country is more divided than ever.

staghounds said...

Even as an abstract source of friction, I'd say no. The States have really become local branches of the Federal government by now in lots of ways. To State governments, the mere presence of IA isn't really an issue because the voters aren't fired up enough to really rock the boat.

The money aspect of IA varies a lot from State to State. But that's not really a source of friction, just a source of negotiating over Federal school and health care money.

If States really tried to do something- no state benefits of any kind without citizenship, no education without citizenship, automatic removal of children from IA parents, serious criminal penalties for being an IA- and tried to make it stick, maybe.

But no State is going to do any of those things. Look how hard it is to get just a few States to require photo ID to vote. And even if there were a public consensus to do them, where is the money to come from? 1 in 30 people in the country is an IA. What State's voters are going to bear the cost of excluding them from its economy? Housing them? Raising their children?

But DC has so much financial power over the State legislatures that I don't see any of them standing up.

Really, I don't think any State has tried very hard to oppose DC on any issue. Segregation a little, but not much. There isn't much States can do to be frictiony these days even if they want.

I agree that it's all part of the impending collapse of the Welfare State.

But like deflation, rollbacks in entitlements, popular anti welfare uprisings, or me being kidnapped for the carnal pleasure of a gang of Australian rugby cheerleaders, that collapse hasn't happened in a modern popularly governed fiat money state yet.

jimbob86 said...

Yes, it does, and yes, it will.

Moreso, it is likely to lead to the dissolution of the Republic we call the "United" States.


It is not the primary issue, (Socialism is), but it is the most visible one. If all these illegals (from Socialist countries, BTW) get the vote, collapse and dissoloution is inevitable, as the producers can not support the looters, just because the latter "need" what is being produced.

Anonymous said...

I would say no. Most folks are fat dumb and happy. The states need the federal $$ to help pay for their roads, infrastructure and buy the vote programs. Civil unrest maybe when the economy falls another 10%.

Border war with Mexico? I think yes in the next 3 years. Poncho Villa style bush warfare.


Bubblehead Les. said...

I believe Illegal Immigration per se won't bring about Civil War, but I see it as another issue on the Overloaded Camel's Back. One more straw...But I also believe that the first major act of violence won't come from the American People, but from the current Federales. Remember, this are the dope smoking, long-haired College-type Hippies, who KNOW that Marxism will work, "if only given a chance". These yahoos will try to force more crap down our throats, and if they lose Political Power, will TRY to send out their Goon Squads to enforce their will. But since 99% of them have no Military experience, they will just throw the U.S. into chaos.

Yet, there may be certain Cities, States and Regions that'll go along with them, and someone will have to go in and help them clean out these rats.

Keep in mind, while the U.S. is in turmoil, Thugs overseas may take advantage of the Chaos here to do something over there. Iran goes for Israel, N. Korea tries for the South, Chavez takes a swing at Columbia, and Al-Queda activates some sleeper cells to feed the fire here.

I hope and pray that nothing major happens here, and the Mid-term Elections go off smoothly. But I'd still keep my eyes and ears open, and keep my Minuteman gear topped off and ready.

Anonymous said...

"'s not (about) slavery, the morality isn't clear."

Then as now.

" you really want the government(s) to have the powers it would take..."

It already does; arguably fedgov's *only* power is to militarily protect our sovereignity.

" you want the war?...twelve thousand insurgents, on the streets..."

Well if that's all it takes to back us down and pull off a coup then I guess we deserve whatever we get. If it comes to an III (illegal immigrant insurgency) I'll be doing what I can to reduce that twelve thousand in my neck of the woods.

"People who talk about doing something to stop or reverse illegal immigration without great big social and liberty costs are ignorant or lying demagogues."

Similar things were said in the 1760's, the 1850's, the 1930's, the 1960's. Yes, there is always a great cost for liberty. But as for me, Mr. Henry said it best.

As to Tam's question: Illegal immigrants. Legal immigrants. Terrorists from outside. Terrorists from inside. Racial division. Political polarization. Civil war? Yes. It's just a matter of who will be whose allies.


D.W. Drang said...

Kishnevi: Local businesses are putting up signs in Sanskrit and Cyrillic in addition to the more traditional Spanish, and, occasionally, English. I'm well aware of the way the demographics for former resident of Russia/The USSR breaks out. (OTOH, I have also had some Eastern European immigrants to excellent work as contractors around the houses.)

kishnevi said...

signs in Sanskrit
We also have scatterings of sings in Thai, Korean (including one for a Korean Presbyterian church)Chinese, Arabic and Persian alphabets, besides the standard Russian, French, Spanish, Portuguese,and Kreyol (=Haitian French). But almost nothing in the languages of the Indian subcontinent.

The alphabet, btw, is offically Devangari. Sanskrit was the language of classic Indian literature, but has not actually been used as a vernacular for a couple of thousand years. Now it's a religious language (lilke Latin was for the Catholic Church) among Hindus and Buddhists.
India has dozens, if not hundreds, of languages in daily use, which is why they continue to use English, so they can talk to each other, but Hindi is the best known Indian language.

Tam said...

Al Terego,

"As to Tam's question: Illegal immigrants. Legal immigrants. Terrorists from outside. Terrorists from inside. Racial division. Political polarization. Civil war? Yes. It's just a matter of who will be whose allies."

Well, you and me are both Terrorists From Inside, and one of the bloggers we most enjoy reading is a Legal Immigrant and a Terrorist From Outside. Whose side are we on?

Anonymous said...

"Whose side are we on?"



Borepatch said...

Late to the party, but glad to be finally off I-95.

Short answer: "no".

Longer answer: Immigration is a subset of the Unfunded Mandate problem. A lot of Governors are getting tired of Washington telling them to spend their money such and such way, while taking all the credit. The governors want to decide how to spend it, and to take the credit for themselves.

Medicare is larger, although it's only discussed in whispers in the halls of power.

Overall, the States are in terrible fiscal trouble, so some governors will look for popular stands to take to poke DC in the eye. Immigration is one of those.

If a governor wanted to take on the Federales, it would be mighty interesting. Beyond the posture-for-the-cameras and pimp-for-votes, it doesn't seem too likely. Certainly doesn't seem like it will end with powder and lead.

Ed Foster said...

Robert E. Lee: Lectured and wrote against secession and didn't resign from the U.S. Army until Federal troops began trashing Virginia. Freed slaves and integrated his Episcopalian Church.

Ulysses Hiram (not Simpson) Grant. Owned slaves in Missouri, and said "If I thought for a moment this war was about slavery, I would resign my commission and offer my sword to the Confederacy".

Abraham Lincoln: "If I could save the union by making slavery illegal in all our states, I would". "If I could save the union by making it legal in every state, I would".

During the Lincoln-Douglas debates, he said "Ma'am, I don't think people should own blacks". "That doesn't mean I think they should marry them".

Also, "The only thing that makes slavery possible is the cowardice of the slave".

But yes, playing up the anti-slavery issue after Gettysberg fired up the British lower classes and kept the Royal Navy from coming to the aid of the Confederates, so I suppose it was a success as propaganda.

But the war was still essentially one about States Rights, so it's an old song they're playing. But today it's not north against south, it's big, European style cities against everyone else.

I don't see open rebellion, but expect massive rioting and martial law in places like Chicago, New York, New Orleans, and L.A. if the Tea Partiers win big in the next two elections and remove the Federal teat.

Which wouldn't bother me one bit. If a conservative is a liberal who has been mugged, I suspect there will be millions of new born big city conservatives after the Democratic Party's professional welfareistas get through with them.

Anonymous said...

States do not have "rights" any more so than the federal government. Only individuals have rights.

Steve said...

I agree with Borepatch's view to a point. This all boils down to money whether welfare for the gimmee girls or paying the incarceration costs for the criminals. The (mostly blue) states are collapsing under their unfunded mandates and give aways, the tax payers are getting killed, literally, by criminals and unlicensed, uninsured third world drivers as an example and financially paying for those who take rather than produce. On the other hand, we dig the cheap salad subsidized on the back of under paid labor (the cowardice of slaves). I'm not as optimistic as others in that I see the money running out at some point. You may have written about it at one time, but the Ruskies predict that the states will splinter into groups -- reconquista southwest, heartland, commie northeast, old line south/southeast, basically on social lines. It can't happen here?, right? (Soviet Union, Balkans, Geece, Iceland... they all thought that too)

Anonymous said...

Ed Foster: Brilliant comment. AT

Brad K. said...

I think that states' rights is the same issue as the 1860's interaction.

Immigration policy, when the Feds face off against the states (for enforcing the federal code) sets the stage for the state to find itself, irretrievably, in opposition to the federal government. We are close, now, to the B. Hussein Obama horsing around and setting Arizona - and possibly other states - in conflict with traditional expectations of security and identity.

The ATF/state manufactured firearms issue is similar, where the rights of the states are clear to the feds and to the states - but they don't see the same application, on each side.

I still contend that B. Hussein Obama is intentionally dismantling the Union, including bankrupting and isolating the states, and intends to take personal control of each state in the union, effectively dismissing Congress and forming his own government, unhampered by that "Constitution" stuff he wasn't able to swear to in public.

Anonymous said...

I live in Phoenix AZ. went into a store today where there were at least 25 other people and I was the only one speaking English. I want my country back. I doubt I will ever get it though because any rights I might be presumed to have will be tied up in a court of law for so many years that the national language will then be Spanish.

Buzz said...

As long as citizens expect their federal government to accomplish anything other than take and redistribute money, we're all screwed.
About the only constitutional task performed well by Fedgov is waging war. -Given our history of tying soldiers' hands behind their backs since the end of WWII, even that isn't performed so well any more.

Don't forget that armed citizens and the French were a major factor in getting the British government out of our country. We have a right and obligation to defend our way of life.

staghounds said...

Since all these things could be changed in a matter of six years or less by a mere majority of voters, I'd say that an open southern border, monetised debt, 15,000 murdered Americans every year, and keeping a quarter of the population as unproductive pets ARE our way of life.

Tam said...


aczarnowski said...

I don't think this will turn into "war" with colors and sides. Temper tantrums on a national scale like Ed mentioned are far more likely IMO. Hold onto your friends and families.

Like a high school stall tactic, we've been putting off the decision of which clique to join, mostly avoiding the worst of either side. Euro socialists or self confident Americans? The decision is coming, and both sides have been saving up punishments for choosing against them.

Anonymous said...

staghounds @ 9:55 a.m.:

" open southern border, monetised debt, 15,000 murdered Americans every year, and keeping a quarter of the population as unproductive pets ARE our way of life."

And in spite of your hopeful and technically accurate comment that six years of thoughtful majority votes can fix it all, I think it will continue to be our way of life until substantially more tumultuous occurrences come.

Because those pets that are "a quarter of the population" represent a potential half of that voter majority, the open border provides a river (heh) of lots more pets, and the debt keeps 'em all under the porch. Those aren't problems; they are features of a very cohesive and effective political plan!

And the 15K "murders"? Collateral damage. Keep 'em fighting over dope, robbing from straights and capping enough of each other to keep the white folks scared, and that majority can clearly see that they need gov to keep them safe and fed.

So it's unlikely six years of votes will produce anything but more of the same -or worse-, and I'm being very bipartisan when I say that...can anyone really say at this point that there is any cohesive vision, plan, or management team in sight from either party for the critical changes necessary for a survivable and sustainable future?

But they will have the chance. Six years will give them this mid-term and the big one in '12 to see what a different (please dear God) ceo and board of directors can do. And I fervently hope that our dear country can be pulled back from the brink by then.

Believe me when I say I hope I am wrong...but I just don't see it. And what then? The term "civil war" will come to mean something quite different than it does to us today if it comes to that, and as I have alluded before, determining who our friends and enemies are won't be nearly so easy as it historically was.

So six years? Yes, I think that is exactly how long we've got. If we fuck it up this time, I believe all bets will truly be off.