Saturday, July 27, 2013

Immigration Bill A Statist's Dream

By Ilana Mercer

The "Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act (S.744)" is statist through-and-through.

This is one thing one can state unequivocally about the Gang of Eight's immigration Bill. The same goes for those who support it. The “libertarian" Independent Institute, for one, whose scholars claim that the "Positive Aspects of Immigration Bill Outweigh Its Flaws."

This is nonsense on stilts—true only if an expansion in the size and power of the federal government is a net positive.

If you've enjoyed the "work" of Department of Homeland Security Director Janet Napolitano, you'll love her successor (rumored to be the New York Police Department's stop-and-frisk Ray Kelly). The Marco Rubio immigration Bill concentrates even more power in the office Kelly might inherit. Such power includes the ability to adjust the status of a "registered provisional immigrant" (RPI) to that of "an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence," on satisfying a few ridiculous conditions, one of which is the RPI's "continuous physical presence." In other words, for being in the country illegally, the RPI may get his illegal status reversed at the pleasure of the secretary.

Is this not Kafkaesque? It is for any American who imagines that government ought to, at the very least, stand sentinel against unsolicited and unjustified trespass.

Almost all powers specified in the Bill are the prerogative of the Secretary of DHS, although DOJ will get a chance to bolster its banana-republic credentials. Eric Holder's Department of Justice gets bigger and badder under the Gang of Eight's plot to reel-in more “undocumented Democrats.”

For instance, were an employer to hire, fire or verify an RPI's employment eligibility in a manner that might be construed as a discriminating "immigration-related employment practice," the proprietor is in hot water. In defending their rights of private property, "foreign labor contractors" will be, moreover, going up against tax-paid litigators, to whom the amnestied will have access.

You'd think that an expansion of the frivolous and counter-intuitive grounds upon which private-property owners may be prosecuted goes against libertarian sensibilities.

Another burden business will bear is the harvesting of data for the government. On exiting the country, departing globe-trotting RPIs will have their biometrical data collected and stored. The onus will be on the country's carriers to do the job. The airlines will be compelled to help government track these departing Democrats.

Open-border libertarians must also like the idea of helping Barack Obama to keep the student-loan bubble afloat. Trust Sen. Chuck Schumer's immigration bill to make it much harder to deny an "unlawful alien's eligibility for higher education benefits."

The monk-like devotion of the "small government" types at the Wall Street Journal and the Independent Institute to government growth mandated by John McCain's Bill is no minor flaw. For example, the "Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013" establishes in the Treasury the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Trust Fund." As well as a "Department of Homeland Security Border Oversight Task Force." Not to mention an "Ombudsman for Immigration Related Concerns." As does the Bill authorize the appointment of many additional magistrate judges and district judges.

More litigators mean fewer rights for locals; more state functionaries spells additional pensions and unaffordable promises in perpetuity.

Yes, these privileges and perks are carved out of the hides of taxpaying Americans, immigrants included.

Did I mention that the same taxpayers will be liberated of funds which will go to nonprofit organizations that assist registered provisional immigrant applicants? Ask Gangster Jeff Flake, a Republican supporter—although he, like the other sorts aforementioned all claiming to stand sentinel against state incursion, has likely not read the Bill.

Needless to say, S.744 galvanizes armies of child and family protective civil servants so as to ensure that in the stampede for stuff, no feelings are hurt and no faux rights trampled.

Free-for-all fools are right about one thing. Americans who worry incessantly about the status of the Northern Mariana Islands can relax. The islanders' representatives in the US Senate have decided that, with respect to immigration, the Northern Mariana Islands are part of the commonwealth. This no doubt is a giant leap for proponents of the night-watchman, minimal state (NOT).

ILANA Mercer is a classical liberal writer, based in the United States. She pens WND's longest-standing paleolibertarian column.  ILANA is a fellow at the Jerusalem Institute for Market Studies. She is the author of "Into the Cannibal's Pot: Lessons For America From Post-Apartheid South Africa."  ILANA's website is . She blogs at

Copyright 2013 Ilana Mercer

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