The Corner

Response to Jonah

Jonah: For a devastating analysis of “temporary worker” or “guest worker”

programs, of which there have been many, I refer you to the article titled

The Mirage of Mexican Guest Workers” in the Nov/Dec issue of Foreign

Affairs.

Sample: “The theoretical benefits of temporary labor programs have seduced

politicians in many countries, just as they are now enticing the Fox and

Bush administrations. Many U.S. and Mexican proponents seem surprisingly

unaware, however, of the long and checkered history of such policies, and

quite innocent of the unwanted effects they have produced in both origin and

destination countries.”

Note BTW that “guest worker” is a translation from German _gastarbeiter_.

The German program is universally recognized to have been a social disaster,

having created a huge population of non-Germans with very high rates of

unemployment and welfare dependency.

If this country has a need to import large numbers of unskilled workers

(which I do not actually believe), let’s create a category for them under

existing immigration rules.

I must confess I smiled at your statement that: “After all, they will be far

easier to locate once they’ve generated all that paperwork, declared their

residences etc. So, conveivably they will be easier to deport.” I don’t

know how things are in the DC suburbs, Jonah, but there is nothing the least

bit difficult about locating illegal immigrants here on Long Island. Given

the authority, I could easily round up a hundred before breakfast, any day

of the week.

There are no real difficulties about enforcing current immigration law, only

a failure of will.

Your second question relates to legal immigration, which I’ll be glad to

discuss another time. In the limited space of The Corner, one topic is

enough to be going on with.

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