Here is the brief email I sent to my congressman and senators yesterday about the government shutdown.

Subject: Immigration

I support President Trump. I want our borders secured. I want a barrier (fence or wall) that will keep illegal aliens and drugs out. I want the people who sneaked into this country sent back where they came from.

Please back our president. When the Democrats call border security and walls racist and immoral, please ask them why they live in gated communities with fences around their yards and locks on their doors. Ask them why they want to deny the rest of us the same kind of security they take for granted.

It does not take much effort to get the attention of our elected officials. Email and the telephone works. We can find their contact information easily. Check out the following.

The problem is just making the effort. Why should we? Well, we have to learn why, but most of the news media lies and covers up the truth. They tell us border security is no big deal. Walls, supposedly, don’t even work. Is that why they call a wall that doesn’t work immoral?

Here is an example. Recently, Angel Moms, the parents of children killed by illegal Aliens tried to meet with Speaker Pelosi and Senator Schumer.  What happened?

The so-called mainstream media ignored the story. Yet if that had been a Liberal group protesting Trump we know that they would have been all over it.

Even though our nation is still in the midst of an epic battle, most Americans, have little if any idea of what has slowly been lost. Because the news media is so selective in its coverage, one could say we are quietly debating the fate of our nation in the courts and Congress. Even many of our battles over the presidency has taken place behind closed doors in form of secret investigations.

Will we preserve our constitutional republic, or we eventually let it fade away with barely a whimper of protest, a protest buried by a partisan news media? Most of our leaders, greedy for power, now want to finish the battle. They want to import millions of people who have no idea what beliefs once made America great. That’s why our conflict over border security is so important. If we do not gain control over our borders, we will not be able to stop greedy, power mad politicians from swamping the votes of those who want to make America great again with those who just want government to give them other people’s stuff. Instead of being a free people, we will become a nation of serfs, a People dependent upon the handouts of a filthy rich vanguard of the proletariat.

You want to hear from some of those Angel Moms, people who have learned the hard way how much government cares? Here are some samples:


  1. Dear Citizen Tom — I have been wondering about this shutdown and I have a serious question and I am asking you the question because I trust what you say about things. The question is kind of hypothetical (Maybe;Maybe not): “Let us say that the shutdown goes on for 6 months or a year or more … is there some point at which the Congress can declare the shutdown itself as a national emergency and do something to end it?” I don’t have a account anymore and I am using Facebook to get through to you. If you would be so kind as to respond to my question, here is my e-mail:

    1. @John Liming

      The powers of the Congress are listed in Article I of the Constitution. Most of those powers are Section 8.

      What can Congress do? They can override the President’s veto with a 2/3’s vote in both houses (See Article 1, Section 7). Otherwise, so long as they cannot get 2/3’s vote in both houses, the president can refuse to sign legislation so long as he wants.

      How long is this shutdown going to last? Darned if I know. With obvious irony, I have heard it described as a Mexican Standoff. If that description is accurate, it is a mess. People cannot work forever without a paycheck.

      If the Democrats remain intransigent and refuse to negotiate, my guess is that at some point Trump will declare an emergency and just go ahead and build the wall. Since I am not familiar with legislation (not constitutional powers) that allows him to declare an emergency, I am not certain what latitude it gives him. My guess is that his lawyers reviewed it, and he doesn’t consider it sufficient. Otherwise, he would have just gone ahead and done it and skipped the shutdown hysteria. Congress controls the purse, not the president.

      Anyway, I suppose I ought to write a post on how much power the president has to declare an emergency.

    2. I think the way it works is:
      Every fiscal year there are authorizations and appropriations.
      Congress can authorize whatever….doesn’t mean it’s happening unless money is appropriated. Authorizations are congressional passage, appropriations are the actual money.
      A real government shut down would be complete. Lights go out, no air traffic, no retirement/Social security/welfare checks. No doctor’s appointments for government insured people. Nothing. Everything stops.
      A “government shut-down” of the modern day invention still appropriates money to certain things. If you think about it, it’s kind of bulls*t we get our retirement check but the people who go to work on the day to day don’t get their pay.
      A real government shut down would not last 24 hours.
      This is all under Congress’ control.

    1. @Scatterwisdom

      When people start talking about what happened millions, 10’s of millions, 100’s of millions, and billions of years ago, I think a good yawn is the appropriate response. I think a yawn also works when people start predicting the weather more than a week out. The “science” of global warming shares too much in common with propaganda.

      If we start tacking solar panels onto the border wall, that will just raise the cost of building the wall and maintaining the wall. That cost is all we will hear from the partisan news media. Like as not the panels will also require compromises that make the wall less effective as a security barrier.

      Just not worth the trouble. Solar technology is still not cost effective. Power companies just build them for the government subsidies and the PR. Furthermore, much of the wall will be out in the middle of nowhere. So we will have to ship the power to where it is needed. That’s costly too and results in greater power losses as the distance increases. In addition, we will still have to have conventional power generation to back up the solar power for those times when the sun is not shining.

      When Trump mentioned the idea, I think he was trolling the Democrats.

      1. Tom,

        I can understand everyone today questioning whether anything said by politicians is fact or propaganda.

        However, there still are sources which over the years have proven to provide facts such as National Geographic.

        What I saw in the Museum were pictures “worth a thousand words.”

        If interested,

        Check out this link

        Fortunately, at my age, this subject is a yawn. However, I could not help seeing the look of apprehension on the fact of my 19-year-old grandson who was with me at the museum.

        Young Democrats politicians are jumping on this issue. In Republican Texas, where floods and the wall is a hot topic, the solar panels on the fence just might resonate with voters?

        Frankly, I no longer think it will be a wise long-term investment to buy beach property and raise a family in Indonesia or any island where there are not mountains on the island.

        Regards and good will blogging.

      2. “If we start tacking solar panels onto the border wall, that will just raise the cost of building the wall and maintaining the wall. That cost is all we will hear from the partisan news media. Like as not the panels will also require compromises that make the wall less effective as a security barrier.”

        Agreed. Solar panels require maintenance. It’s far easier and more cost effective to make a solar farm (easier access) elsewhere than put a bunch of panels up on a wall. Solar can be cost effective now (at least, last military housing base they put them in…a private contractor, since they covered the cost of electricity which was included in the rent their bean counters did the math and found it worked out to their advantage over time.

          1. Thanks for that Liz. I’d call it our virtue signaling to our neighbors just how green we are, except we had to cut down all our trees to get the sunlight to make it work. Anyway, that sort of virtue signaling doesn’t work here in the deep South – here you need a NRA sticker to signal the right kind of virtues .😉

  2. How is this for a compromise CT:

    Trump gets 100 miles of wall for starters-
    Pelosi gets her govt open-

    Then renegotiate…….

    Heads will cool down as the bricks go up………then people will actually SEE that walls do work, one foot at a time, then pretty much all should get on board for the rest of the construction. For God’s sake, how do these nitwits justify their own gated communities?

  3. Why is the congress still getting their paychecks? They aren’t getting the work of the people done.


      Understand the aggravation, but consider. Out of 435 congressmen, at least a few must be honest, and those are the ones who probably need their paychecks. I expect we can count on the ones who don’t to volunteer their fellow congressmen to do without. Those are the guys we need to replace.

  4. Talk about propaganda!

    Where are your statistics about the amount of crime undocumented aliens actually commit compared to the population in general? How about the fact that border communities like El Paso actually tend to have some of the lowest crime rates in the country? Why don’t you talk about the fact that farmers actually desperately need immigrant labor, and that making such immigrant labor legal would do more to stop victimization of unskilled workers, both legal and illegal, than stopping such immigration completely – that why unions support such reform. Where is your data on the fact that more that half of illegals wouldn’t be stopped by a wall because they came in on legal visas? Similarly, why don’t you explain how a wall would stop drugs when the vast majority of the drugs are apprehended at legal ports of entry? Furthermore, why didn’t you talk about how illigal immigration is actually at historic record lows (due to bipartisan immigration measures, including border security measures innacted years ago)? Additionally, why didn’t you mention that the current crisis is not a border security crisis at all but rather a humanitarian crisis which is governed by treaty obligations that a wall has nothing to do with? Why aren’t you honest in saying that what we really need is bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform, not a dumb wall, and that, because Democratic have consistently offered that, Trump has shut down the government to get what?

    Given that you would rather present propaganda than facts, what are your actual reasons for wanting a stupid “wall” which you know as well as I do is obviously more symbolic than pragmatic?

    1. @tsalmon

      Because I didn’t write a comprehensive textbook on illegal immigration in a blog post, that means what I wrote is wrong? Have you got a screw loose?

      1. Just asking for a little honesty about true facts and motivations. I guess that means that I must have a screw loose in the Trumpland of demagoguery.

        Why don’t you explain to your congresspersons why the “Wall” is really a symbol of your hatred of multiculturalism? I’m sure that will convince them. Look how well it’s working for Steve King?

        No, I’m not calling you a bigot, but I am saying that you use the same propaganda.

        1. @tsalmon

          You can’t even be honest about whether or not you are accusing me of bigotry, but you are demanding “honesty” from me?

          Name calling is your party’s only “argument” against border security. It is absurd. You people will say you are for border security, but if anyone tries to implement border security you start the name calling.

          1. It’s only bigotry if you think identity politics is bigotry, because that’s what this impractical wall seems to be actually about for Trump.

            Here’s what I wrote to Trump and my congresspersons:

            Open the government and negotiate comprehensive, bipartisan immigration reform (including practical border security measures). You are hurting America and Americans with this demagogic nonsense over a racist symbolic wall.

          2. @tsalmon

            We had “comprehensive, bipartisan immigration reform” in 1986. You just demanded amnesty and more illegal immigration, at best, open borders at worse.

          3. Tom,

            You act like there is some “final solution” for every issue. Nothing short of building an iron curtain and shooting anyone who crosses over or slips in and stays will completely stop immigration (and even then, I’m not so sure). Would you sacrifice our cultural humanity for the sake of our cultural purity and/or a supposed decreased material prosperity? Why does ideological perfection always have to be the enemy of continuing moderate reforming approach that is just better than before?

          4. @tsalmon

            Still trying to paint me as a bigot or extremist, but I am just guilty of not wanting to be used by people whose beliefs disgust me.

            Unless there are people within fighting against It, it is not that difficult for a nation to maintain its borders. Rome fell, lost the capacity to control its borders, because the Romans fought each other for control of Rome, not because someone conquered it.

            We have made our government too big a prize. To maintain their power over us, our leaders would destroy this country.

            All Trump wants is six billion dollars. Pelosi spends that much when she wipes her nose after a sneeze. She cannot even come up with a decent reason to oppose Trump. Think of the irony. She wants to postpone the State of the Union because the security supposedly won’t be good enough until after the government shutdown ends. Got to be ready to shoot anything that moves to protect her, don’t we?

          5. Ya, sure, we are Rome about to fall to barbarians, and you’re not being extremist? 🙄

            If the money is so insignificant, then why did Trump shut down the government for it? Did you know that the government hasn’t even spent the money that they already have been budgeted for border barriers?

          6. @tsalmon

            If the wall, fence, barrier or whatever won’t be effective, what are you upset about? The money? Nope! We can tell that not true because the people you vote for do what they do.

          7. Well, that last one makes no sense.

            Anyway, Trump is calling more and more nonessential workers back to work without pay (mainly to facilitate nonessential government the lack of which would anger Trump’s political base in those areas), and Trump also signed a Democratically sponsored bill to ultimately give all these government furloughed and non-furloughed workers back pay. So why not end the charade (and the pain for these workers and their families) and at least open up these departments of workers who are working so they can be paid now? And if you are going to open government and pay workers in some areas that are not essential, why not all areas, essential and nonessential?

            Why? Exactly because it is all a stupid charade.

            I mean seriously Tom. What sense does it make to make people work without pay if you are going to pay them eventually? Even worse, what sense does it make to have people stay home without pay if you are going to pay them eventually for doing nothing?

            This whole thing is like Kafka wrote a play for Kabuki theatre. If Republicans wanted to prove that they are unfit to govern, they’ve sure done it here.

          8. @tsalmon

            Complain all you want. Then please explain why you keep voting for more of the nonsense you are complaining about.

            Controlling our borders and regulating immigration is a function that the Constitution actually gives to the Federal Government. Those idiots you vote for have wrecked our immigration system and won’t defend our borders. Instead, they would squander our nation’s wealth buying our votes and rewarding their cronies. They spend most of the budget on programs only corrupt politicians would think constitutional.

            What are they doing during the shutdown? Partying. They would rather go to Hawaii, Puerto Rico, or on some junket than stay in chilly DC and negotiate an end to the farce.

          9. Tom,

            When the core of your Party’s entire ideology is that government is the problem, can you see how it makes it impossible for them to actually govern even in areas where they agree that they have a constitutional responsibility to do so?

            Immigration is a “dynamic” problem meaning that it needs constant complex and dynamic pragmatic reform which is also motivated by our highest American (and Christian) ideals. In so far as out immigration law is outdated or flawed, the immigration system we have today is mainly the result of “bipartisan” legislation. The Republicans had two years of unified government to come up with comprehensive immigration reform, but could not do so because they are ideologically opposed to all the practical aspects of governing itself.

            Trump has done a wonderful job of cowing Republicans’ with emotional appeals to his base, but every time the “art of the deal” maker agreed to a practical agreement, at the last minute Trump succumbed to blowhard ideologues like Limbaugh and Coulter and broke his word, leaving practical Republicans looking like fools for even trying to actually govern the country.

            Hating such huge government works projects and realizing the impracticality of a wall, most Republicans in their heart of hearts don’t even want the wall. The only Republican congressman who actually represents a Mexican boarder district wants modern technological border security, but thinks a giant wall is just simpleton racist symbolism.

            Tell me, if your inspiration truly is “agape” love, the way the Jesus showed us to love God and, like God, to unconditionally love all people equally, regardless of race, creed, language, ethnicity, or culture, and indeed, even if they are bad and our enemy, please explain to me what you think “we” “practically” need to do with comprehensive immigration reform? What is the “practical” Republican plan that is inspired by our highest American values and our sense of Christian love (which in my humble opinion are substantially and spiritually the same thing)?

            Seriously, is building a giant stupid, impractical wall really all Republicans have? And that stupid “plan” is worth hurting American and Americans to get? Really?

          10. @tsalmon

            When the core of your Party’s entire ideology is that government is the problem, can you see how it makes it impossible for them to actually govern even in areas where they agree that they have a constitutional responsibility to do so?

            And it goes on….

            You are repeating a bunch of drivel, mostly nonsense you picked up in the Liberal Democrat news media. I have told over and over again that government is a NECESSARY evil. Because we are evil we cannot do without government.

            Can you imagine trying to live with a thousand pound house cat? An ordinary cat eats mice and is a menace to birds. A really big cat, like a sabor tooth tiger, thinks you are a mouse. That’s our government right now. It is too big for us too control. Want proof? Look at what is going on.

            You haven’t got anything good to say about Trump or Republicans, but in the name of pragmatism (whatever you think that is), you urge everyone to scrap their principles and their commonsense in the name of Jesus. Obviously, you still need to read His book.

            You have not got a clue how we should control the border. You don’t know what your party stands for. All you have is a feeling is that Trump is a bad person and love will make it all well. Without the wisdom to guide it, love can motivate us to do the wrong thing. You have been gulled into backing the policies of a bunch of rich fatcats who just want cheap labor and more gullible voters. That is not wise.

            Here is what Trump is asking for right now.
            The objective is to get the immediate problem under control. If Trump can seriously reduce the flow of illegal immigrants, he will have leverage to negotiate.

            Look at this too:

            Trump has proposed deals the Democrats could have accepted if they were serious about resolving the issue, but they prefer a porous border, crime, drugs, national security issues and all.

            The Democrats and Establishment Republicans already have what they want. They created this mess. To them the current situation is just fine. When somebody has what they want, where is the incentive for them to negotiate?

          11. Furthermore, you want talk about “negotiating”. I know something about negotiating. I used to do it for a living. Trump is not “negotiating” – he is taking hostages and giving an all-or-nothing ultimatum.

            Due to the overwhelming support of the American people, the Democrats now control one House of Congress, which means they have negotiating leverage to pass laws that that the majority that ellected them want them to pass, including immigration laws. If the Dems give in to such hostage taking, then, instead of the practical, negotiated, comprehensive, comprehensive legislation through the majoritarian and non-majoritarian checks and balances that are at the heart of our constitutional system, we will give all power to the Executive to ignore the majority will, and an extremist ideological minority will rule by fiat. If this shut-down-the-government hostage taking works for Trump, then this will be the way we legislate from now on, and you may as well throw out the Constitution, make Coulter and Limbaugh our new King and Queen with Trump as their puppet (or more likely ultimately Putin’s puppet because this is exactly how he’d like to see our democracy destroyed).

          12. @tsalmon

            Gosh! You make your side sound so noble. Of course, your side doesn’t have any trouble warping words to mean anything they want. You cannot change reality, but perception is what matters to a propagandist. So why not warp the word “hostage”?

            Let’s see. What other words have you messed with? Gay, marriage, rights, liberal, constitutional, racist, bigot, charity, compassion, government shutdown…. You have even cheapen the word “wall” as if you could walk right through reinforced cement.

            It is actually kind of difficult to communicate with people who mangle words just so they can weaponize them. In fact you even take people’s names and use them as weapons.

            If this shut-down-the-government hostage taking works for Trump, then this will be the way we legislate from now on, and you may as well throw out the Constitution, make Coulter and Limbaugh our new King and Queen with Trump as their puppet (or more likely ultimately Putin’s puppet because this is exactly how he’d like to see our democracy destroyed).

            Look at you! You paint this as a huge crisis, but what is the crisis to you? The simple fact the government is too big for us to control it? Nope! You worry majoratarian tyranny will end. We would defend our borders. Our government would actually put the interests of Americans ahead of those of adversarial states. I sure hope your worst fears are realized.

          13. A plan to keep government open was passed in the Senate that the administration said Trump would sign. At the last minute Limbaugh objects because, although it promises the exact amount for border security that Trump asked for, it does not specifically go to something called a “wall”. Trump pulls out of the deal and calls Limbaugh to assure him the POTUS will do what a demagogue wants rather than what he agreed to.

            Trump is holding up the paychecks of a million Americans over something called a “wall”, the definition of which changes by the minute (Pelosi acerbically said she thinks it may eventually may be “a beaded curtain”).

            “Hostage” is defined as “a person seized or held as security for the fulfillment of a condition.” Seems like over a million federal employees lives have been taken hostage for an undefined thing which is more symbol that substance.

            You want to argue semantics while Trump lies and mangles the language by the minute. Well, if you really want clarity, then can you define the terms and the issues in a something other than apocalyptic hyperbole? What is a “wall”, and does it include numerous practical border security measures that are the right kind of barrier at the right cost benefit, at the right place, at the right time, to solve the real problem, barriers that are being funded and that no one disagrees on? What is the “crisis”, which is actually many crises (economic, legal, humanitarian, criminal, national security, addiction, free trade, etc.) which are all interrelated and some of which are more of a “crisis” than others? When you pull on one string doesn’t it effect all the other strings in often negative, unintended ways so that a compressive plan is necessary? Is a “wall” really a real thing that somehow solves “everything” or is it a symbol for something far more insidious to the pluralism upon which our democracy was founded and without which it will not long survive? You tell me?

          14. @tsalmon

            So Rush Limbaugh is now our president? Well, he thinks the fact people like you believe that ludicrous.

            All you want to discuss are your feelings about this that, and everything except the actual issue. You feel Trump has taken federal workers hostage is holding them in locked cells in his island fortress like Doctor No’s. So it must be so.

            Frankly, I got better things to do than argue semantics. The notion that anyone has to justify the value of a wall as a security barrier is just plain absurd. You know damn well the wall will just be part of a mix of security measures. You also know a little bit about how competitive procurement works. When the contractor has yet to be chosen, how is anyone suppose to say exactly what the wall will look like?

            Anyway, you aren’t offering any serious objections. In addition to blowing lots of smoke, you are just personally attacking Trump and anyone who supports him. That’s just disgusting unethical.

          15. You are the one who started an discussion on semantics, and now you want to retreat because you can’t really define why Trump has shut down the government. Like Trump you can’t define this “wall” as anything different from what is already being done because you know as well as I do that this is just a symbol, and not even a real thing.

            Can you tell us exactly what Trump wants?

            Mexico is one of our largest trading partners. Most of what you don’t want comes in not over, past or through unprotected frontiers, but instead through legal ports of entry. Perfect border security would bring trade to a stand still. Perfectly free trade means an open door to all the bad stuff. The problem has little to do with a “wall”. But that is where that border security and legal genius Limbaugh wants Trump to draw his line in the sand.

            This is all about winning some sick partisan game, and meanwhile the country, including border security, suffers. When are Republican going to put country before party again?

          16. @tsalmon

            Yeah! If Trump were “bipartisan” (another mangled word), he would be a Democrat clothed as a Republican, and this would not be “some sick partisan game”. It would just be sick.

            You are talking about anything but the issue. Implementing Trump’s proposal will eliminate trade with Mexico? 🤨😣🤣 We are not anywhere near perfect border security. What planet are you on?

            Do you really want to know what Trump wants? He just made a proposal. Instead of letting CNN or some other fake news network “filter” it for me, I just listened to Trump. Why don’t you try doing the same? He is just a cunningly evil billionaire, not Satan. Watching him on video won’t contaminate you with cooties (That’s marmoewp’s fear, I think.).

          17. Cooties? What are we 12 again bro? 😳

            I did listen to him. The usual verifiable falsehoods and dog whistles.

            The constitutional system is not designed for the president to be both the executive and legislative branches. The Dems control one House of Congress and enough votes in the Senate so that anything that done MUST be a “bipartisan” compromise, not a surrender to any radical minority, Left or Right.

            Trump made a proposal which threw out a few bones to dreamers and which vaguely rereredifenes a “wall” once again. No really new there there, but fine. Now he should open the government, set the hostages free and both sides can negotiate a compromise based upon reasoned facts and expertise instead of hyperbole, and without a gun to the hostages heads.

          18. “He is just a cunningly evil billionaire, not Satan.”

            How true . . . except the “cunning” part and most likely the billionaire part too. He’s definitely not cunning enough to actually be Satan, but he often appears to be working for him. 😏

    2. “How about the fact that border communities like El Paso actually tend to have some of the lowest crime rates in the country?”
      It’s gratifying to see you use this statistic. I produced it a while back and it seemed to be ignored.
      The topic was gun control, guess that’s why it was ignored.
      Curious if those who cite El Paso as a reason for “open borders” have ever actually been there? Put it this way: if you get radiation therapy at the hospital, you need a doctor’s note to travel because they have border patrol check points and the radiation will set off their sensors.
      Although El Paso has a huge Mexican immigrant population (though, strangely, as a nurse I could work there without knowing Spanish…which wasn’t the case in Miami. Might be a cyclical thing) they aren’t pro “open borders”. And their border patrol agents are mostly Mexican Americans also. Gee…they must be racist.

      1. Nice input Liz. I’m sure there is someone on the Left arguing for completely “open borders” (most likely someone who takes her Good Samaritanism to the extreme) just as I’m sure there is some racist on the Right who wants to close the borders completely to stop the invading Brown barbarians. Don’t you think most Americans, whether they know anything about the issue or not, just want their politicians to come up with practical, cost effective and humanitarian solutions to problems like addiction, low wages, expensive goods and services, the refugee crisis, etc. ?

        You have anecdotes. I have anecdotes too. When we first started using military assets, I spent a while of my Navy flying career on the front lines of the War on Drugs patroling international waters against drug smugglers (and no, I’m not Hispanic so I suppose my motivations must be in doubt ). I was only a small cog in the multi billion dollar machine to stop drugs long before they get to the ports of entry where most drugs come in. I can tell you that we, along with our South and Central American partners, definitely stopped some drugs. I can tell you that it was fun, satisfying flying, but was it cost effective? Don’t know. I read in the paper yesterday that the former president of Mexico purportedly received a 100 million dollar bribe from drug lord El Chopo. The Mexican population just shrugged like that’s just a regular Tuesday.

        Yea, a stupid wall will solve all the problems. Why bother with anything else?

        1. I don’t think the wall is a panacea. Here is an interview with a recently retired Border Patrol agent (Mr. Regalado spent 23 years with the Border Patrol), he offers his opinion on the wall

          “Would a Border Wall Really Work?
          But when it comes to the southern border, Regalado confirms one main point of contention: a wall does work.
          “When I started out in Imperial Beach in 1995 the wall was being installed. Areas that already had a wall allowed us to respond to those areas without having to have agents constantly nearby. That freed up our resources and man power so we could then focus on other areas,” he explained.
          “So as the wall was being put up, those areas were then secured enough that instead of having 2,000 people standing there getting ready to cross, it pushed them to areas that didn’t have a wall and we could funnel them effectively and work those groups in areas that were one, less dangerous to them – the areas they were going through were highly dangerous – and two, it allowed the agents to stay safe as well, if it’s dangerous for them, then it’s dangerous for us as well,” Regalado said.”

          1. Like I said, the efforts of the Navy asset that I commanded were effective in that I know we stopped some drugs. It appeared to work in the moment, but was it cost effective? Did it simply cause smugglers to change their methods? Given the economic inelasticity of demand for drugs because of addicted Americans, were we actually working at the wrong end of the problem? I just don’t know because my focus was on my mission, but like your border agent, I can tell you that it looked like it was working on the front lines.

            And as an operational asset manager, I was way more concerned with mission effectiveness than cost – if a 2000 lb. bomb was twice as effective as 500 lb. one, but it cost 1000 times more, I’d want the bigger bomb. Nobody graded me on cost effectiveness. That was way above my pay grade.

            We can do an anecdotal tit-for-tat all day long Liz, but we both know that this is not an easy problem – it’s not even “one” easy problem. It’s going to take, time, expertise and compromise, and even then we are probably only talking about incremental temporary progress to a highly dynamic situation.

            The idea that Trump manufactures a supposedly brand new crisis in a long term project and then holds the pay of Homeland Security workers hostage to supposedly once and for all fix Homeland Security is asinine on practically every level. Even if he got funding for his while stupid wall tomorrow, it would take years, if not decades to build, would not solve the real problems, and would likely just move the problems around, ending up being a giant white elephant monument to Republicans’ inability to govern. Why don’t we just paint “Trump” on it in pure gold every few hundred feet or just to top off the extravagance of Republican idiocy?

          2. @tsalmon

            Barriers, fences, walls, fortifications, whatever you want to call them work. We still build them today because they are cost effective. Do we have a unassailable metric? No, and that’s why you are using this silly argument.

            The people the wall will stop are the ones who cannot get visas. Those are the people who are most likely to stress our welfare state and least likely to be able to pass a security check. That alone makes it worth the money. We should not care how badly the Democrats need to increase the numbers dependent on government handouts.

            You want help the illegal immigrants? Help them where they are coming from. Stop encouraging them to drag their children on dangerous journeys to our country.

            Will a wall stop drug smuggling. By itself? No, but it will help. The real solution is to stop people from buying dope. No one knows how to do that.

          3. “Barriers, fences, walls, fortifications, whatever you want to call them work.”


            No one is arguing that. The fact that we need barriers of some kind has been agreed to for years. I crossed the Mexican border in a couple locations nearly 40 years ago. We had barriers then and we have even more now. Furthermore, that plus other measures seem to be working.

            If you think that Trump shut down the government over Democratic intransigence of “reasonable border barriers” then you haven’t been paying attention to the evolution of Trump’s lies. First, we were going to have a giant wall along the entire southern border that you could see from outer space and Mexico was going to pay for it. It is only recently that it shrunk down to the scope and size of a pretty picket fence around only the front gate.

            That’s because Trump, the great negotiator, backed himself into a box canyon, and now he is looking for any way out where he can to save face. But Trump is like a child loudly whining for candy at the grocery store. Even if he’s gone from a 500 pound bag of snickers bars to one lollipop, if you give in, he’ just weight 200 lbs. and whine louder the next time.

            Maybe before it’s over Trump will have moved so far to the Democrats side that it will look stupid for them not to give in (like maybe the baby starts begging for broccoli), but by then you got to wonder why he shut down the government in the first place because he could have got more than that by just negotiating.

          4. Technically it is stupid “simile calling” brother, as in the “Republicans are being as stupid as bricks here” or “the Trump party is more like crybaby conservatives than real conservatives”. 😊

    3. “Why don’t you talk about the fact that farmers actually desperately need immigrant labor.”

      The US has a massive pool of unskilled labor already in the US without bringing in undocumented workers. Of course illegal immigrants want to do it because the pay is massive on a Mexican scale. I’d love to pick tomatoes for 4 times my average monthly pay too.
      Once the illegals are kicked out, producers will have a choice of paying what the American (not the Mexican) labor market dictates… or let their fields rot.
      They will pay the correct wages. Some of this expense will be passed on to the consumer… but not as much as one might think… because they weren’t passing much of the savings on to the consumer to begin with.
      Corporate lobbyists push for lower wages while the government picks up the slack with all sorts of welfare programs, privatizing profits and socializing costs.

  5. Hmm, I wonder what would happen, if a group of Parkland Shooting survivers barged into the office of Mitch McConnell, chanting “We want guns banned now!” At a guess, they’d get the same treatment, that Women for Trump got.

    1. @marmoewp

      The Parkland Shooting survivers? I would hard pressed to find a better example to make my point. The news media’s coverage was wall-to-wall and highly partisan. Republicans like Senator Rubio did meet with the group, and the news media made certain the were insulted as rudely as possible.

          1. @Tom
            I consider ridding other people of lice to be a service and expect to be returned the favor. Lice are easy to pick up, no matter your personal hygiene, and they spread rapidly, if not taken care of.

            I simply see making non-factual claims, or leaving out facts in order to evoke a wrong impression in the casual reader, as tactics unbecoming an honest, productive debate. The world is complex enough and it can be seen from so many points of view, that we need not make talking to each other even more difficult by throwing up smoke screens and sending others down rabbit holes. Besides, I try to only pick nits the size of a golf ball or larger, they are way easier to handle. 😉

          2. @marmoewp

            I post my beliefs on a this blog, and I am willing to let anyone comment so long as they are willing to follow the rules I have posted. Sometimes I get agreement. Sometimes I get complete disagreement.

            We don’t share the same ideological beliefs. That’s quite obvious. What is it that you believe that is better? We know it is not perfect.

            “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” — Theodore Roosevelt

            I don’t especially like what Theofore Roosevelt stood for, but he stood for something. So I admire the man.

            I am no Theodore Roosevelt. I am not even a strong man. I can only do what I can, and little of what I do will long be remembered. Still, in spite of the errors I sometimes make, it is possible I may change a few people for the better.

            I may also do harm. To avoid stifling people, chasing them into apathy, I try to stand for something, not against everything and everyone who does not affirm me. That is, I try to avoid being nothing more than a critic.

    1. @tsalmon

      The two senators. I.would enjoy watching Tim Kaine lecture other Democrats about their gated communities, fences around their yards, and locked doors, but I won’t hold my breath waiting for that to happen. Still, there are lots of Federal employees who are angry about not getting their paycheck. I suspect many of those people don’t see any reason why Kaine shouldn’t vote for a wall.

      1. I sympathize with your dilemma, but for opposite reasons, but that didn’t stop me from writing my congresspersons to to tell Trump to open the damn government. Thanks for the links.😊

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