Friday, December 28, 2007

"Huckabee: U.S. Should Monitor Pakistanis Coming into Country"

I know that some have their doubts, but it seems to me that Mike Huckabee gets it. What does he get? He gets the importance of enhancing border security and protecting American Sovereignty:

ABC News' Kevin Chupka reports: During a press conference Thursday night in West Des Moines, Iowa, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee suggested that after the assassination of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, the United States should, "have an immediate, very clear monitoring of our border, and particularly to make sure, if there's any unusual activity of Pakistanis coming into the country. We just need to be very very thorough in looking at every aspect of our own security internally."

That's exactly the right reaction. Yes, it's a terrible tragedy, what happened in Pakistan. And yes we should worry about what happens over there, 10,000 miles away. But even more, much more, we should tend to our own security here. In the days and weeks ahead, every pundit in the country is going to be weighing in on the situation in Pakistan. And that's fine.

But amidst all that punditifying, what we really need is a president who will make sure that we are safe and secure here at home.

See It and Weep--and Then Get Angry. And Then Take Action!

Here's something really important: The IIlegal Alien Activities Tracking System.

Take a look, support this effort--this could become a major tool in the fight to raise awareness.

Why? Because issues of illegal immigration and sovereignty are often seen as abstract. But if you can look at a map, look up your zip code, your own house, even--well, that's not so abstract anymore.

Thanks for the tip, ACW!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Didn't We Fight the Civil War to Put A Stop to Secession?

"Lakota withdraw from treaties, declare independence from U.S." That's the headline in USA Today last week.

Is this a joke? I hope that the feds come in with an appropriate show of force! We carved out a sovereign America, and it wasn't easy. But now we aim to keep it.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The Smoking Gun on the Democrats and Immigration -- Or Perhaps I Should Say, A Smoking Gun, Because There Are Many

On November 27, 2007, The Democratic Strategist blog outlined a proposed Democratic strategy for dealing with the immigration issue that provides a window into the cynical thinking of the Democratic Party. To put it bluntly, top Democratic strategists and intellectuals are proposing to throw pixie dust in the eyes of the voters, in hopes that they won't notice the underlying reality, which is that the Democrats are still clinging to their open-borders/anti-Sovereignty platform.

Blogger Andrew Levison, a veteran author and commentator, did not suggest that the Democrats change their views. Instead, he suggested that Democrats spin their views, to make them more appealing to voters--you know, the same sort of word-choice advice that, say, Andrew Lakoff dispenses.

In a nutshell, Levison suggests below that the Democrats come up with some talking points to fake out Americans--you know, "boob bait for the Bubbas." The contempt for white working class voters, and also for their intelligence screams out: The proposal suggests using pity for illegal alien children to break up support for border enforcement, all the while seeking to shift the blame over to "extremist" Republican economic policies, north and south of the border. The words "wall," or "barrier" do not appear in Levison's piece. And the word "fence" appears just once: a fence is derided as a Republican idea that "cannot possibly be fulfilled without dividing vast numbers of children from their families." And we don't want to hurt the children, right?

Levison figures that if Democrats talk in favor of compassion and against Reaganomics, well, that will be good enough to skip past the whole nasty business of a wall.

But don't take my word for it. Here are Levison's recommendations in their entirety:

Let’s get specific. Here’s what the Dems can say:

We believe the border must be secured, immigrants must follow the rules and obey the law and people who come to this country to live must be willing to accept our values and assimilate into our way of life.

But there are two places where Democrats break with the Republicans:

First, we will not support proposals that will separate children from their parents. This is just plain immoral. A fair immigration system must not only control the borders, it must be enforced in a way that is fair, humane and in accord with American values and the American way.

Second, we’re going to put the blame for the problem where it belongs. The people coming here to work didn’t want to leave their homes, their parents and relatives and the communities where they grew up. They are economic refugees from an economic Hurricane Katrina unleashed in Mexico and other Latin countries by the extremist free market polices that have been championed by the Republicans ever since the 1980’s.

The same Republican economists who don’t want all Americans to have health insurance and won’t protect American workers from outsourcing, downsizing and unfair trade are also the ones who helped make a mess of Mexico’s economy in the 80s and 90s and left these people with no alternative except to leave their homes to seek a better life. We have to fix the immigration mess, but the right place to start is by recognizing who made the mess in the first place.

Levison adds some explanation:

These talking points are intentionally limited to achieving two goals: to focus the debate on real-life children and families rather then faceless abstractions and to directly link immigration to the Republicans broader failures in defending the economic interests of ordinary Americans. To the extent that the debate can be fought on this terrain, the Democrats will hold a significant advantage.

Furthermore, it's important to understand that The Democratic Strategist is not just some random blog, one of the 100 million or so out there. Instead, TDS is an online publication co-edited by William Galston, Stan Greenberg and Ruy Teixeira, three of the smartest Democratic thinkers in the country. In their mission statement, the three Democrats set forth their plan:

The Democratic Strategist will seek to publish substantial articles that draw strategic conclusions from the latest public opinion and demographic research conducted by the academic community and commercial public opinion polling firms as well as from the leading think-tanks and policy institutes across America.

And a look at TDS's huge editorial advisory board, including the same George Lakoff, underscores the party-wide seriousness of this Democratic effort.

Which is to say, when TDS puts up a piece, it can be assumed to be a serious expression of what top Democrats are really thinking. So here goes, here's Levison's blog-posting, in its entirety:

Immigration, Open Borders and the “Reagan Democrats” – Devising a Democratic Strategy

(Andrew Levison is the author of two books and numerous articles on the social and political attitudes of blue collar workers and other ordinary Americans)

It is an unfortunate fact that during election years important discussions of long-term political strategy often get oversimplified and distorted in order to squeeze them into conventional campaign narratives.

This is what happened to an important Democracy Corps memo issued several weeks ago. The memo -- which offered an analysis of polls and focus group data on a range of domestic economic issues including immigration and open borders -- got grabbed and sucked up into the mainstream media debate about the electoral wisdom of the Republican’s “get tough”, anti-illegal immigrant posturing and whether the Democrats should follow their lead or stick to traditional progressive principles.

But this was not the specific issue the D-Corps memo was actually evaluating and its more subtle strategic analysis and conclusions should not be allowed to get lost in the shuffle. The central finding of D-Corps’ polls and focus groups was that a profound and unrecognized degree of frustration exists among average middle-class Americans regarding a wide range of economic issues, feeding an extraordinarily deep contempt and anger at the political establishment, Democratic as well as Republican. The Memo’s key thesis was that, without a proper political strategy, this deep discontent will not necessarily benefit the Democrats next year.

In regard to immigration, the memo noted three critical facts:

1. While Democrats in the survey identified Iraq and health care as the major areas where the country was going in the wrong direction, the top issue identified by independents was immigration and “unprotected borders.” 40% of independents chose this option – no other issue even came close.

2. Immigration and open borders were the top concern for those voters who want to vote Democratic but are holding back – the most attainable swing voters of all.

3. The voters who were most angry about the issue were those with a high school education and rural voters – groups where recent surveys have suggested Democrats might otherwise be able to regain some lost ground.

The first point that should be noted is that these conclusions are focused on how immigration is perceived by a specific group of voters – “ordinary middle-class” swing voters – and not how the issue will play with the electorate as a whole (In fact, when D-Corps studied national opinion as a whole, they found slightly less support for the one- sided “get tough” measures then for alternatives that included some path to citizenship).

More important, the basic problem the D-Corps memo identified is not simply that there is substantial middle-American antagonism to illegal immigration. It is that this sentiment threatens to fuse with three other attitudes among many potential democratic voters: a sense of severe economic distress; a feeling of powerlessness and of being ignored by political leaders; and a simmering sense of class resentment toward the “liberal” educated elite. This was the potent ideological package that Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and both Bushes used to ride to the presidency and which Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly, Ross Perot and scores of their lesser imitators have ridden to national celebrity.

It is not surprising that Democracy Corps detected this emerging danger. Back in the 1980s Stan Greenberg, the lead author of the memo, was the first political analyst to clearly understand and map the distinct political attitudes of the “Reagan Democrats” – the traditionally Democratic blue-collar and grey-collar workers whose defection to the Republicans has arguably been the most fundamental (and intractable) demographic problem for the Democrats during the past 25 years. The clear implicit warning the recent D-Corps memo contains is that if Democrats fail to successfully confront the current challenge, these voters could be lost for another quarter-century.

This division within the Roosevelt New Deal Democratic coalition first emerged in the early 1970s as the “white backlash” to the civil rights protests of the 60s. Nixon’s political strategists based their successful appeal to “The Forgotten Americans” and “Silent Majority” on the notion that the Democratic Party had become a coalition of affluent “limousine liberals” and lower-class minorities allied against the moral and social values and the economic interests of ordinary middle-class Americans.

A modern-day updating of this Republican wedge strategy would tap into three related attitudes among non-affluent voters that the D-Corps survey identified – a profound sense of economic insecurity, a feeling that all the Washington politicians are indifferent to the problems and needs of ordinary people and a sense that uncontrolled immigration represents a major breakdown of just and legitimate social rules, and of the rule of law.

When appeals to these attitudes among ordinary middle-class Americans are combined with direct appeals to explicit anti-immigrant sentiment, a potent counter-narrative can be constructed to blunt the appeal of relatively popular Democratic proposals on health care and other economic issues and to deflect widely shared criticisms of Republican failures. As E.J. Dionne has noted: “For Republicans the issue (of immigration) is both a way of changing the political subject from Iraq, the economy and the failures of the Bush presidency and a means of sowing discord in the Democratic coalition.”

In 2000 and 2004 explicit and divisive anti-immigrant rhetoric was held in check by Karl Rove’s desire to try to win Latinos to the Republican coalition. As that strategy has now been effectively abandoned, an alternative, “Democrats don’t care about ordinary people” narrative, centered on Democratic “tolerance for law-breakers” or “refusal to stand up for average Americans” against illegal immigration, will become a particularly important political wedge strategy. When the smoke clears, the result could easily be that Latinos will become a firm and permanent part of the Democratic coalition, but at the price of losing any chance of winning back any substantial numbers of Reagan Democrats and other moderate-income white Americans for another generation.

Virtually all the debate within the Democratic coalition in the last several weeks has been based on accepting this simplistic either-or view of the available alternatives. The Dems’ only choices, it would seem, are to either “move to the right” or “stick to their principles”. Yet, even on the surface, it is clear that the anti-immigrant “coalition” is extremely unstable and internally divided, and an alternative view of the Democrats challenge is to consider what strategies they might best employ to prevent the Republicans from overcoming these obstacles.

The first step is to face the reality that the Republicans will inevitably make some substantial inroads among Reagan Democrats (who previous polls suggest might be unusually receptive to Democratic appeals this election) with a blending of class resentment against liberals and the educated with a more aggressively anti-immigrant stance. There are several basic psychological schemas very deeply embedded in the political attitudes of many Americans that are simply waiting to be invoked.

First, many voters old enough to remember the 70s or 80s will easily transfer large clusters of negative stereotypes and attitudes about African-Americans and liberals from those eras onto the issues of today. One particularly dramatic example of this process can be seen in the fact (observed in the focus groups conducted by D-Corps) that many participants quite implausibly complained about immigrants coming to America to live on welfare and food stamps. Most Americans clearly recognize the very strong work ethic of Latino immigrants, and this “Latinos on welfare” notion is not seriously promoted in either the mainstream or even the right-wing media. So such complaints almost certainly represents dormant schemas from the 70s and 80s about black “welfare queens driving Cadillacs” and “able-bodied men living off welfare checks” being unconsciously mapped onto a new minority that is similar in that it is also poor and non-white.

Second, the notion that the Democratic Party represents a coalition of wealthy liberals with various ethnic minorities or other “special interest” groups has been a standard feature of the right-wing echo chamber for almost three decades, particularly in the talk radio and Fox media environments. Voters even modestly influenced by these media channels will immediately adopt this extremely familiar and deeply embedded frame of reference when it is presented as the explanation for why Democrats “just don’t care” about illegal immigration and wide-open borders.

Finally, the underlying sense of powerlessness in the face of economic forces like outsourcing and downsizing and a frustration with being ignored – which closely resembles the attitudes of 1992 Perot voters – will easily be linked to economic arguments against immigration (e.g. competition for jobs, loss of bargaining power).

Taken together, the exploitation of these preexisting, deeply engrained attitudes will give Republican politicians a receptive audience for an anti-immigrant appeal that will reach beyond those voters who have overtly racial or ethnic anti-immigrant views.

It is important to recognize the significance of these pre-existing attitudes because they clearly influence the choice of Democratic strategy. Just as firefighters will deploy their resources quite differently if they are trying to contain a blaze rather then directly extinguish it, so Democratic strategy will vary depending on whether the goal is visualized as trying to contain and limit the spread of a Republican anti-immigrant campaign among Reagan Democrats (i.e. among high-school educated swing voters) versus trying to directly confront it and defeat it completely. In one case the goal becomes splitting the coalition the Republicans are trying to create. In the other the goal is to frontally attack the anti-immigrant campaign in the most categorical and comprehensive possible way.

Given the preexisting psychological attitudes that the anti-immigrant campaign can exploit, the likelihood of Democrats being able to decisively defeat it are relatively remote. There is, on the other hand, a reasonable chance that the coalition can be divided and contained.

In fact, one key goal for Democratic strategy should actually be to drive a wedge between the explicitly racist and anti-ethnic wing of the emerging anti-immigrant coalition and the larger group for whom the driving force is not a personal dislike of Latinos and other non-whites. While detailed polling data distinguishing the two groups has not been collected, the distinction is clearly visible. On the one hand, focus groups and journalistic interviews consistently find substantial numbers of people who express relatively positive and sympathetic attitudes toward Latino immigrants as individuals, while disapproving of open borders. On the other hand, letters to the editor and comment areas in political web sites reveal a very large current of bitter, overt and explicit bigotry. One particularly repulsive example of this is the very frequent application of words usually applied to dogs and other animals – words like “whelps”, “spawn” and “mongrels” -- to describe the infant children of illegal immigrants (The Anti-Defamation League and Southern Poverty Law Center both provide extensive documentation of this, cited Here).

In seeking to drive a wedge between these two groups there are three lessons that can be drawn from the mistakes Democrats made in dealing with the white backlash of the 70s that can help to avoid a repetition today.

First, the best sociological field studies of the white backlash (such as Jonathan Rieder’s Canarse and Kenneth Durr’s Behind the Backlash) demonstrated that it was simply impossible to meaningfully divide white attitudes into two neatly separate categories called “racism” and “legitimate grievances” and then decide whether the views of most whites were properly classed as one or the other. In practice the two categories were inevitably fused in complex and individually idiosyncratic ways. What was clear, however, was that categorically dismissing white grievances as “simply smokescreens for racism” acted to unite non-affluent whites against the accusers rather then driving a wedge between the overt and incorrigible racists and other more ambivalent whites. As Drew Westen argues in his recent book, The Political Brain, appealing to voters’ “better angels” (i.e., their belief in basic American notions of equality, justice and fairness) far more effectively isolates the prejudiced from the ambivalent then blanket accusations of bias and racism.

Second, it was only in retrospect that Democrats realized that there were certain issues that inflamed the white backlash far more then others because they more directly and tangibly affected real life. Crime and school busing, in particular, evoked a passionate, intensely emotional reaction that more abstract racial issues did not because they touched peoples’ lives deeply and undermined their physical security and sense of community in their local streets and neighborhoods.

Today, the most intense and emotional hostility to immigrants comes from people who see their local communities undergoing rapid change because of immigration and who feel a resulting sense of cultural threat and dislocation. This attitude may not be as easily expressed on opinion surveys as more abstract complaints about fiscal or economic effects, but they are much more deeply and emotionally felt. The more educated and cosmopolitan may view this attitude as retrograde and provincial, but it is not the same as racism.

Finally, Democrats in the 70s underestimated the degree to which the backlash against welfare was motivated not by a simple “us vs. them” dislike of African-Americans, but by a sense of unfairness and affront to the basic values of hard work and fair treatment. Today, the comparable basic values many people feel are violated by illegal immigration involve “following the rules” and obeying the law. The intensely negative reaction to the proposal to give undocumented workers drivers’ licenses flows directly from this hostility to seeing people “getting rewarded for breaking the law”.

How then can the Dems best communicate with generally high-school educated Reagan Democrats on this issue? There are two features of public opinion about immigration and the border that provide the answer. First, polls and focus groups suggest that a substantial group of middle-American voters do not hold deeply negative views of Latinos as individuals. They are widely seen as hard working, polite and deeply committed to family. Second, there is considerable sympathy for the motives – seeking jobs and a better life -- that brought the migrants to the U.S.

These views provide the basis for a Democratic response to the anti-immigrant campaign that is now developing, one that highlights the gap between the racist and non-racist elements of the coalition and connects the problem with the larger economic failure of the Republican Party to defend the interests of average, middle-class Americans.

Two basic facts underlie this strategy. First, Republican demands to simply “build a high fence” and “close the border” – while emotionally satisfying -- cannot possibly be fulfilled without dividing vast numbers of children from their families. In the early 80s most undocumented workers were younger men earning money to send back to their families in Mexico. Today, in contrast, there are hundreds of thousands of “cross-border” families with some members in the U.S. and some in Mexico, many of whom have been separated for years. Tightened border security in recent years as already produced large numbers of new broken families and any major increase in border control will vastly increase the numbers of people affected. As a recent New York Times article -- entitled “Immigration Dilemma: a Mother Torn from a Baby” --noted, “at least 13,000 American children have seen one or both parents deported in the past two years after round-ups in factories and neighborhoods. These figures are expected to grow. Over all, about 3.1 million American children have at least one parent who is an illegal immigrant”.

This reality provides the opening to challenge anti-immigrant campaigns on a simple, emotionally compelling basis – are the Republicans willing to pass draconian “shut the borders” or “strict enforcement” measures that will result in permanently separating tens of thousands of children from one or both of their parents, particularly if the latter have no jobs or ways to make a living in their native country? It will certainly be cheaper to do it that way than to use a more humane “case-by-case” approach, but how many ordinary middle-Americans are actually willing to save money by breaking up tens of thousands of families whose only crime is having crossed the border in search of a better life? The answer to this question will dramatically divide those who consider Latino children sub-human “whelps” and “mongrels” from the more decent sentiments of most ordinary Americans.

Second, the basic force that has impelled this vast migration of Mexicans is not simply population growth in Mexico but also the direct effect of the Republican-sponsored, free-market policies applied in Mexico after the nations’ default on its debt in 1982. In the 50s, 60s and 70s most factory workers in Mexico actually had substantial job security, health and retirement benefits (a result of New Deal inspired legislation passed in the 1930’s) and rural policy favored small farmers. It was the “neo-liberal” (i.e. free market) policies championed by the Republicans and then pushed by the IMF and US trained technocrats that undermined labor standards in industry and opened small scale agriculture to ruinous competition from large private companies. The predictable result was that decent jobs and viable small-scale farming shrank dramatically.

This line of argument allows Democrats to tie the problem of immigration to the broader Democratic critique of Republican economic policy and philosophy – everything from the rejection of national health insurance to outsourcing and unfair trade policy. This approach directly challenges and undermines the Republican “immigration shows that Democrats don’t care about ordinary people” counter-narrative whose central purpose is to distract attention away from traditional economic issues.

Let’s get specific. Here’s what the Dems can say:

We believe the border must be secured, immigrants must follow the rules and obey the law and people who come to this country to live must be willing to accept our values and assimilate into our way of life.

But there are two places where Democrats break with the Republicans:

First, we will not support proposals that will separate children from their parents. This is just plain immoral. A fair immigration system must not only control the borders, it must be enforced in a way that is fair, humane and in accord with American values and the American way.

Second, we’re going to put the blame for the problem where it belongs. The people coming here to work didn’t want to leave their homes, their parents and relatives and the communities where they grew up. They are economic refugees from an economic Hurricane Katrina unleashed in Mexico and other Latin countries by the extremist free market polices that have been championed by the Republicans ever since the 1980’s.

The same Republican economists who don’t want all Americans to have health insurance and won’t protect American workers from outsourcing, downsizing and unfair trade are also the ones who helped make a mess of Mexico’s economy in the 80s and 90s and left these people with no alternative except to leave their homes to seek a better life. We have to fix the immigration mess, but the right place to start is by recognizing who made the mess in the first place.

These talking points are intentionally limited to achieving two goals: to focus the debate on real-life children and families rather then faceless abstractions and to directly link immigration to the Republicans broader failures in defending the economic interests of ordinary Americans. To the extent that the debate can be fought on this terrain, the Democrats will hold a significant advantage.

Beyond this, of course, there are the broader challenges of devising effective long-term programs and policies that can win majority support. The D-Corps memo actually contains quite useful polling data on the ways in which support for relatively balanced proposals vary depending on which particular elements are included. Equally, a variety of proposals have been offered for more flexible, cross-border labor market reforms that would significantly reduce and regularize the flow of immigrant workers (see, for example, Princeton sociologist Alejandro Portes’ proposal in the October 2007 issue of The American Prospect).

But the most pressing and immediate challenge facing the Democrats is to drive a wedge between the racist and non-racist elements of the coalition the Republicans are trying to create and to link immigration with the Republican Party’s failure to defend the economic interests of ordinary Americans.. The Republican strategy ultimately depends on successfully blurring and obscuring these divisions and failures – not only from moderates and progressives, but from the middle-American “Reagan Democrats” in the coalition itself. A successful Democratic strategy, in contrast, will consist in successfully exposing the reality behind the fa├žade.

The Democrats’ real choice is not simply between “moving to the right” and “sticking to principles”; it is between allowing the Republicans to set the terms of the debate or presenting an alternative narrative in which the Democrats are both decent and right on the issue of immigration and the Republicans are dishonest and wrong.

Posted by Andrew Levison on November 27, 2007 10:35 AM

There you have it, folks, read it and take notes. Andrew Levison is not an elected official, but there's every reason to believe that TDS is an influential organ for national Democrats. And, of course, there's plenty of evidence that the Democrats--joined, of course, by many Republicans--do not actually want to build a secure wall, which, of course, is the sine qua non of any effort to assert American control over the US-Mexico border and to protect American Sovereignty overall.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

The Next Panama Canal Treaty

 summarizes what happened at the Bali global warming conference:

The Washington Post leads with, and everyone else fronts, the end of the U.N. climate talks in Bali, where some surprising, last-minute concessions paved the way for a framework for negotiating new climate change accords over the next two years. The Los Angeles Times leads with the U.S. military's change of plans for reducing troop levels next year, saying troops will be concentrated in Baghdad as it pulls back soldiers from other parts of the country. The New York Times leads with the White House and NATO worrying about losing whatever gains they've made in Afghanistan over the last six years.

Spending two weeks in talks just to settle on a framework for negotiating a climate change pact over the next two years may seem like no great accomplishment to some. But every paper makes it clear that getting nearly 190 countries to agree on even this much required major concessions all around. The United States managed to nix language stipulating hard and fast emissions cuts for developed nations, and developing nations secured promises of financial and technological aid. The LAT says that just keeping the United States engaged in the talks constituted a victory for the United Nations. The NYT's piece, meanwhile, says the framework was agreed to with one eye looking beyond the Bush White House, in hopes that the next president will place a higher priority on addressing climate change.

Folks, this is the next Panama Canal Treaty--an epic fight over US Sovereignty that redefines American politics. The pro-Sovereignty forces lost that fight against both Republican and Democratic globalists in the late 70s, but the Sovereigntists had their vindication, in the election fo Ronald Reagan in 1980. The SC sees a similar redefining fight in the '00s.

But in the meantime, here's a revealing photo of Al Gore receiving his Nobel Prize. Note the lipstick! Note also his strong resemblance to Bela Lugosi a coincidence? Maybe not! He sure looks like he's ready to pay the Dracula role, sucking away our national independence.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Peggy Noonan on the Elites and Immigration

Peggy Noonan, always a great voice, on any topic, speaks out on immigration, and, by implication, Sovereignty. The whole piece, concerning '08 politics, is worth a good read at, but here's the S-stuff:

It is clear in Iowa that immigration is the great issue that won't go away. Members of the American elite, including U.S. senators, continue to do damage to the public debate on immigration. They do not view it as a crucial question of America's continuance. They view it as an onerous issue that might upset their personal plans, an issue dominated by pro-immigration groups and power centers on the one hand, and the pesky American people, with their limited and quasi-racist concerns, on the other.

Because politicians see immigration as just another issue in "the game," they feel compelled to speak of it not with honest indifference but with hot words and images. With a lack of sympathy. This is in contrast to normal Americans, who do not use hot words, and just want the problem handled and the rule of law returned to the borders.

Politicians, that is, distort the debate, not because they care so much but because they care so little.

Hillary Clinton is not up at night worrying about the national-security implications of open borders in the age of terror. She's up at night worrying about whether to use Mr. Obama's position on driver's licenses for illegals against him in ads or push polls.

A real and felt concern among the candidates about immigration is a rare thing. And people can tell. They can tell with both parties. This is the real source of bitterness in this debate. It's not regnant racism. It's knowing the political class is incapable of caring, and so repairing.

Immigration Is The New Third Rail -- It's About Time! And Sovereignty--That's Next!!

Veteran Republican political consultant Marc Rotterman offers
important advice to politicians of both parties in the pages of today's Raleigh News & Observer. Here's Rotterman's conclusion, which should be required reading for anyone thinking about winning an election next year. Note that Rotterman makes the crucial linkage between border control and US Sovereignty.

Illegal immigration is becoming the defining issue of the 2008 election.

Those who stand for amnesty, driver's licenses for illegal aliens, in-state or out-of-state tuition for illegal aliens at our institutions of learning will pay a price at the polls.

Conversely, those who respect the rule of law, national sovereignty and the will of the American people will be rewarded politically when citizens cast their votes next fall.

It'll be interesting to see who listens. But we know that the voters are paying close attention to the candidates who protect the border and our Sovereignty.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Coming Soon! The Sovereignty Scorecard!

Who has fought for American Sovereignty--here on the homefront? Who has fought against American Sovereignty--once again, here on the homefront? The Sovereignty Caucus takes small "d" democracy seriously.

We need honest elections and an informed electorate to guide our ship of state.

And the Sovereignty Caucus aims to be part of that process--a big part. The SC will be rating the politicians, from the presidential candidates, to all the others. It will take us some time to get the methodology right. But we will do it.

"Very Well, Alone"

The new movie "Atonement," starring Keira Knightley and James MacAvoy, features a Dunkirk scene, reminding us of the horror of war. And even more horrible than war, of course, is defeat. The only thing worse than what happened to the British who evacuated from Dunkirk in 1940 is what happened to the French who stayed behind to be brutalized by the Nazis.

Which in turn reminded me of this famous political cartoon from the great David Low, the lone Tommy shaking his defiant fist at the unseen enemy.

Sometimes that's how I feel. That's probably how most Americans feel a lot of the time. America is not alone, of course. We have many friends and allies; peoples and countries that realize that we are the last, best hope of mankind. And it's great that we can sign treaties and make deals and forge alliances. Sometimes it's even a good idea to negotiate with enemies, if there's truly the basis of a possible agreement.

However, the whole point of American Sovereignty is that if all the diplomacy fails, if the world is plunged into darkness, made by worse by the lights of perverted science, we will still defend ourselves, by ourselves. Alone, if need be.

Max Boot of Commentary Magazine Boils Down His View on Immigration To Its Globalist Essence

Get used to it America: your new servants--and your new masters--will be immigrants. So says Max Boot,, who is a Fellow at The Council on Foreign Relations in New York City. To such Manhattanites, zooming over the rest of us, lofted ever upward by a jet stream of tax-deductible foundation money, such humdrum issues as legality, and opportunity for home-grown Americans--well, such issues are too small to worry about, or even take seriously. Legal, schmegal--what’s the big whoop-dee-doo diff?

Actually, Max, the twinned issues of legality and security make all the difference, all the difference in the world. That was the lesson of the immigration battle last spring. And a headline in The Politico newspaper today reads as follows: "Immigration reshapes politics everywhere." That's not Tom Tancredo talking, that's the voice of a Beltway newspaper, dedicated to campaigns and elections, with no discernible political ideology.

A Sovereign America should make the decisions for itself as to who comes here. Through an open, transparent, small "d" democratic process, in which the people make informed decisions as to what's best for their homeland security. Is that so unreasonable? Other countries enforce their border laws and build walls to defend themselves when they need to--America should do the same.

But here's Boot, blogging for Commentary magazine, dripping with contempt for the Republican Party and the people in it:

To be sure, Republicans claim to be all in favor legal immigration; it is only illegal immigration they claim to oppose. But the reality is that a lot of undocumented immigrants are also making a positive contribution to this country. In any case, the distinction between legal and illegal quickly gets lost in the debate, when a lot of the leading Republicans sound like they’re simply aggravated by too many foreigners coming here.

Keep it up, guys, if you want to lose the votes of Latinos—and those of our newest CEO’s.

Some might wonder: Isn't Commentary supposed to be a conservative magazine? Maybe, but it's got it share of globalist neoconservatives, who are anything but conservative.

"The Last Best Hope Of Man On Earth"

This was Ronald Reagan's speech to the first-ever Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington DC, January 25, 1974; this speech is remembered for having launched his presidential primary campaign against Gerald Ford for the 1976 GOP nomination. Note the reference to John McCain herein. McCain was a hero of Vietnam; too bad he wasn't listening more closely to the Gipper as he explained why America is so unique and graced by God. That's why most Americans want to keep it that way! Sorry, John.

Excerpts of "We Will Be A City Upon A Hill" below:

There are three men here tonight I am very proud to introduce. It was a year ago this coming February when this country had its spirits lifted as they have never been lifted in many years. This happened when planes began landing on American soil and in the Philippines, bringing back men who had lived with honor for many miserable years in North Vietnam prisons. Three of those men are here tonight, John McCain, Bill Lawrence and Ed Martin. It is an honor to be here tonight. I am proud that you asked me and I feel more than a little humble in the presence of this distinguished company.

There are men here tonight who, through their wisdom, their foresight and their courage, have earned the right to be regarded as prophets of our philosophy. Indeed they are prophets of our times. In years past when others were silent or too blind to the facts, they spoke up forcefully and fearlessly for what they believed to be right. A decade has passed since Barry Goldwater walked a lonely path across this land reminding us that even a land as rich as ours can't go on forever borrowing against the future, leaving a legacy of debt for another generation and causing a runaway inflation to erode the savings and reduce the standard of living. Voices have been raised trying to rekindle in our country all of the great ideas and principles which set this nation apart from all the others that preceded it, but louder and more strident voices utter easily sold cliches.

Cartoonists with acid-tipped pens portray some of the reminders of our heritage and our destiny as old-fashioned. They say that we are trying to retreat into a past that actually never existed. Looking to the past in an effort to keep our country from repeating the errors of history is termed by them as "taking the country back to McKinley." Of course, I never found that was so bad -- under McKinley we freed Cuba. On the span of history, we are still thought of as a young upstart country celebrating soon only our second century as a nation, and yet we are the oldest continuing republic in the world.

I thought that tonight, rather than talking on the subjects you are discussing, or trying to find something new to say, it might be appropriate to reflect a bit on our heritage.

You can call it mysticism if you want to, but I have always believed that there was some divine plan that placed this great continent between two oceans to be sought out by those who were possessed of an abiding love of freedom and a special kind of courage.

This was true of those who pioneered the great wilderness in the beginning of this country, as it is also true of those later immigrants who were willing to leave the land of their birth and come to a land where even the language was unknown to them. Call it chauvinistic, but our heritage does set us apart. Some years ago a writer, who happened to be an avid student of history, told me a story about that day in the little hall in Philadelphia where honorable men, hard-pressed by a King who was flouting the very law they were willing to obey, debated whether they should take the fateful step of declaring their independence from that king. I was told by this man that the story could be found in the writings of Jefferson. I confess, I never researched or made an effort to verify it. Perhaps it is only legend. But story, or legend, he described the atmosphere, the strain, the debate, and that as men for the first time faced the consequences of such an irretrievable act, the walls resounded with the dread word of treason and its price -- the gallows and the headman's axe. As the day wore on the issue hung in the balance, and then, according to the story, a man rose in the small gallery. He was not a young man and was obviously calling on all the energy he could muster. Citing the grievances that had brought them to this moment, he said, "Sign that parchment. They may turn every tree into a gallows, every home into a grave and yet the words of that parchment can never die. For the mechanic in his workshop, they will be words of hope, to the slave in the mines -- freedom." And he added, "If my hands were freezing in death, I would sign that parchment with my last ounce of strength. Sign, sign if the next moment the noose is around your neck, sign even if the hall is ringing with the sound of headman’s axe, for that parchment will be the textbook of freedom, the bible of the rights of man forever." And then it is said he fell back exhausted. But 56 delegates, swept by his eloquence, signed the Declaration of Independence, a document destined to be as immortal as any work of man can be. And according to the story, when they turned to thank him for his timely oratory, he could not be found nor were there any who knew who he was or how he had come in or gone out through the locked and guarded doors.

Well, as I say, whether story or legend, the signing of the document that day in Independence Hall was miracle enough. Fifty-six men, a little band so unique -- we have never seen their like since -- pledged their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor. Sixteen gave their lives, most gave their fortunes and all of them preserved their sacred honor. What manner of men were they? Certainly they were not an unwashed, revolutionary rabble, nor were they adventurers in a heroic mood. Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists, 11 were merchants and tradesmen, nine were farmers. They were men who would achieve security but valued freedom more.

And what price did they pay? John Hart was driven from the side of his desperately ill wife. After more than a year of living almost as an animal in the forest and in caves, he returned to find his wife had died and his children had vanished. He never saw them again, his property was destroyed and he died of a broken heart -- but with no regret, only pride in the part he had played that day in Independence Hall. Carter Braxton of Virginia lost all his ships -- they were sold to pay his debts. He died in rags. So it was with Ellery, Clymer, Hall, Walton, Gwinnett, Rutledge, Morris, Livingston, and Middleton. Nelson, learning that Cornwallis was using his home for a headquarters, personally begged Washington to fire on him and destroy his home--he died bankrupt. It has never been reported that any of these men ever expressed bitterness or renounced their action as not worth the price. Fifty-six rank-and-file, ordinary citizens had founded a nation that grew from sea to shining sea, five million farms, quiet villages, cities that never sleep -- all done without an area re-development plan, urban renewal or a rural legal assistance program.

Now we are a nation of 211 million people with a pedigree that includes blood lines from every corner of the world. We have shed that American-melting-pot blood in every corner of the world, usually in defense of someone's freedom. Those who remained of that remarkable band we call our Founding Fathers tied up some of the loose ends about a dozen years after the Revolution. It had been the first revolution in all man’s history that did not just exchange one set of rulers for another. This had been a philosophical revolution. The culmination of men's dreams for 6,000 years were formalized with the Constitution, probably the most unique document ever drawn in the long history of man's relation to man. I know there have been other constitutions, new ones are being drawn today by newly emerging nations. Most of them, even the one of the Soviet Union, contain many of the same guarantees as our own Constitution, and still there is a difference. The difference is so subtle that we often overlook it, but it is so great that it tells the whole story. Those other constitutions say, "Government grants you these rights," and ours says, "You are born with these rights, they are yours by the grace of God, and no government on earth can take them from you."

Lord Acton of England, who once said, "Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely," would say of that document, "They had solved with astonishing ease and unduplicated success two problems which had heretofore baffled the capacity of the most enlightened nations. They had contrived a system of federal government which prodigiously increased national power and yet respected local liberties and authorities, and they had founded it on a principle of equality without surrendering the securities of property or freedom." Never in any society has the preeminence of the individual been so firmly established and given such a priority.

In less than twenty years we would go to war because the God-given rights of the American sailors, as defined in the Constitution, were being violated by a foreign power. We served notice then on the world that all of us together would act collectively to safeguard the rights of even the least among us. But still, in an older, cynical world, they were not convinced. The great powers of Europe still had the idea that one day this great continent would be open again to colonizing and they would come over and divide us up.

In the meantime, men who yearned to breathe free were making their way to our shores. Among them was a young refugee from the Austro-Hungarian Empire. He had been a leader in an attempt to free Hungary from Austrian rule. The attempt had failed and he fled to escape execution. In America, this young Hungarian, Koscha by name, became an importer by trade and took out his first citizenship papers. One day, business took him to a Mediterranean port. There was a large Austrian warship under the command of an admiral in the harbor. He had a manservant with him. He had described to this manservant what the flag of his new country looked like. Word was passed to the Austrian warship that this revolutionary was there and in the night he was kidnapped and taken aboard that large ship. This man's servant, desperate, walking up and down the harbor, suddenly spied a flag that resembled the description he had heard. It was a small American war sloop. He went aboard and told Captain Ingraham, of that war sloop, his story. Captain Ingraham went to the American Consul. When the American Consul learned that Koscha had only taken out his first citizenship papers, the consul washed his hands of the incident. Captain Ingraham said, "I am the senior officer in this port and I believe, under my oath of my office, that I owe this man the protection of our flag."

He went aboard the Austrian warship and demanded to see their prisoner, our citizen. The Admiral was amused, but they brought the man on deck. He was in chains and had been badly beaten. Captain Ingraham said, "I can hear him better without those chains," and the chains were removed. He walked over and said to Koscha, "I will ask you one question; consider your answer carefully. Do you ask the protection of the American flag?" Koscha nodded dumbly, "Yes," and the Captain said, "You shall have it." He went back and told the frightened consul what he had done. Later in the day three more Austrian ships sailed into harbor. It looked as though the four were getting ready to leave. Captain Ingraham sent a junior officer over to the Austrian flag ship to tell the Admiral that any attempt to leave that harbor with our citizen aboard would be resisted with appropriate force. He said that he would expect a satisfactory answer by four o'clock that afternoon. As the hour neared they looked at each other through the glasses. As it struck four he had them roll the cannons into the ports and had them light the tapers with which they would set off the cannons -- one little sloop. Suddenly the lookout tower called out and said, "They are lowering a boat," and they rowed Koscha over to the little American ship.

Captain Ingraham then went below and wrote his letter of resignation to the United States Navy. In it he said, "I did what I thought my oath of office required, but if I have embarrassed my country in any way, I resign." His resignation was refused in the United States Senate with these words: "This battle that was never fought may turn out to be the most important battle in our Nation's history." Incidentally, there is to this day, and I hope there always will be, a USS Ingraham in the United States Navy.

I did not tell that story out of any desire to be narrowly chauvinistic or to glorify aggressive militarism, but it is an example of government meeting its highest responsibility. ...

Somehow America has bred a kindliness into our people unmatched anywhere, as has been pointed out in that best-selling record by a Canadian journalist. We are not a sick society. A sick society could not produce the men that set foot on the moon, or who are now circling the earth above us in the Skylab. A sick society bereft of morality and courage did not produce the men who went through those years of torture and captivity in Vietnam. Where did we find such men? They are typical of this land as the Founding Fathers were typical. We found them in our streets, in the offices, the shops and the working places of our country and on the farms.

We cannot escape our destiny, nor should we try to do so. The leadership of the free world was thrust upon us two centuries ago in that little hall of Philadelphia. In the days following World War II, when the economic strength and power of America was all that stood between the world and the return to the dark ages, Pope Pius XII said, "The American people have a great genius for splendid and unselfish actions. Into the hands of America God has placed the destinies of an afflicted mankind."

We are indeed, and we are today, the last best hope of man on earth.

"And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge... each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor."

That was the Declaration of Independence, of course. The Founding Fathers did their part. Now it's our turn to do ours:

We the citizens of the United States of America do hereby pledge to preserve and protect the Sovereignty of our flag and the republic for which it stands.

We believe that Sovereignty is the essence of American independence and greatness. It is not possible to establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, or secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and to our posterity—unless we protect our Sovereignty against all enemies and threats, foreign and domestic.
So whereas the Sovereignty of our nation is immediately threatened by under-defended borders, we must strengthen our border defenses, so that all Americans can once again be secure in their own country.

And whereas the Sovereignty of our Nation is threatened by amnesty for those who have violated our immigration laws, we must prevent such amnesty, which would undermine the rule of law and encourage further Sovereignty-eroding law-breaking in the future. While America must remain a friend to all the peace- and liberty-loving nations of the world, we must enshrine the principle, now and forever, that everyone who lives in America, or visits America, abides here as the result of a transparent and fully legal process.

Therefore, I, ___, pledge to defend the Sovereignty of the United States of America.

Always faithful to our history, our Constitution, and our fellow citizens, I join with others to make a solemn declaration in regard to America’s Sovereignty: This we’ll defend.

Copyright (C) 2007, Sovereignty Caucus. Permission freely granted for non-profit use.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Take Your Cue, Get a Clue--The New Yorker Hates You!

"RETURN OF THE NATIVIST/Behind the Republicans’ anti-immigration frenzy." -- That's the loaded headline in the December 17 issue of The New Yorker.

Whenever elite magazines, such as The New Yorker, start throwing around phrases such as "nativism" and "frenzy," it's a safe bet that the trendy left is getting nervous about what the dolts and proles are up to, out in what they like to call "dumb-bleep-istan." That is, TNY will always find room in its lefty heart for Republicans that it figures are sure to lose, such as Sen. John McCain. Such useful folk are typically showered with praise for their "independence" from the GOP herd.

But if Republicans show some real spine--or a real instinct at sniffing out a winning issue--well, then, they are denounced and ridiculed. See the cartoon above, from the 12/17 issue. That's Cong. Tom Tancredo whirlwinding his GOP rivals; needless to say Tancredo is portrayed as some sort of McCarthyite-Troglodyte.

But interestingly, even TNY refers to NY Gov. Eliot Spitzer's ill-fated drivers-licenses-for-illegals plan as "misbegotten"--but then writer Ryan Lizza assures his readers that it won't affect any elections. Well, gee, how does he know that? And of course, with the exception of a rare few, such as Sen. Chris Dodd--still channeling some of his working-class roots--how does Spitzer's original position differ from the basic position of the national Democratic Party?

I think that Democrats think that they will win next year anyway, based on Bush's unpopularity. And they might be right. But then they will face the challenge of actually enacting their party's agenda, and that means placating the base--which includes, of course, The New Yorker.

But of course, the more that ordinary Americans come to realize that the D Party has chosen to throw in with the likes of TNY--at the expense of its historic base among blue collars and ethnics and the working class--the less likely it is that the Democrats will win the next election.

There's no law that says that the Dems have to run bicoastal liberal globalists as their presidential nominee--it's just that they want to do so, to keep their Soros-Kos constituency happy. And then they face the challenge of electing the likes of John Kerry among Americans overall. And he's a tough sell, isn't he?

And it will be especially tough for the Dems if the GOP absorbs the Tancredo message and runs on a get-tough platform. Remember "law and order"? That worked for Richard Nixon in 1968, much to the annoyance of the liberal elites.

Sure, sure, the GOP should modify Tancredoism appropriately. But the Party should keep his essential message, the part about defending America's borders, and preserving American Sovereignty--that's a political winner.

Everyone remembers the story attributed to Pauline Kael, the late film critic for The New Yorker. After the 1972 election, in which Nixon, of course, was victorious, she is said to have said, "How could Nixon have won? I don't know anyone who voted for him." Well, of course she didn't. And there weren't many Nixon voters among the mag's subscribers. But somehow, Nixon despite the contempt of Kael & Co. managed to win--carry 49 of 50 states, in fact.

Hence the TNY serves as a handy guide to the next election--whoever the magazine is for, it's a safe bet that that candidate is the candidate of the urban bet against that candidate.

The American Sovereignty Caucus believes that globalism, which has a "conservative" side--including such open-border-ers as McCain, George W. Bush and Jack Kemp --as well as a liberal ide, is inevitably going to be pushed aside by a renewed American nationalism.

What will win is not nativism, but nationalism. American Sovereignty.

America making its own decisions, without taking orders from the rest of the world.

Deal with it.

"US Faces New Demands at Bali Talks"

That's the headline atop a revealing article on the politics of global warming by the AP's Charles J. Hanley. The United Nations wants us to back down, to do it their way.

So what say you, Americans? Will you bow down to pressure from Al Gore and the Global Greens?

We should say no, of course. Hell no, even. Let Americans make these decisions. But don't feel sorry for Gore & Co. I hear that life is pretty good, with a fat expense account, paid for by the UN or some fatcat foundation, out there in Bali.

And oh, a dumb question for all those who attended this Very Important Conference: How much CO2 was emitted flying everyone to that island in the South Pacific?

Where Do We Get Such Men?

Was it Duty? Honor? Country? What inspired them to slog their way ashore at Dog Red Beachon June 6, 1944?

Here are some great words of wisdom from Gen. Douglas MacArthur, one of the true heroes of the 20th century. Here he is, near the end of his long life, speaking at his alma mater, West Point, on May 12, 1962:

The shadows are lengthening for me. The twilight is here. My days of old have vanished - tone and tints. They have gone glimmering through the dreams of things that were. Their memory is one of wondrous beauty, watered by tears and coaxed and caressed by the smiles of yesterday. I listen then, but with thirsty ear, for the witching melody of faint bugles blowing reveille, of far drums beating the long roll.

In my dreams I hear again the crash of guns, the rattle of musketry, the strange, mournful mutter of the battlefield. But in the evening of my memory I come back to West Point. Always there echoes and re-echoes: Duty, Honor, Country.

Today marks my final roll call with you. But I want you to know that when I cross the river, my last conscious thoughts will be of the Corps, and the Corps, and the Corps.

And no doubt of the men who fought for Mac, and with him, across two world wars, plus Korea.

Our Freedom Is A Gift From God--But We Had To Fight For It!

Where Do We Get Such Men?

That was the famous question that Fredric March, playing the character of Admiral Tarrant, asks at the end of "The Bridges at Toko-Ri," the 1954 Korean War epic starring William Holden, Grace Kelly, and Mickey Rooney. The picture above shows Holden and Rooney, about to make The Ultimate Sacrfice.

Where, indeed, do we get such men? What, or who, were they fighting for in their last moments. Was it their country? Their loved ones back home? Each other? We'll never know, of course, at least here on this earth. Only Eternity knows the answer.