Junior Ganymede
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Civil War Watch, Immigration Edition

November 25th, 2014 by Patrick Henry

armed assembly

The President has issued an executive order effectively granting temporary legal status to an estimated 5 million illegal immigrants, and temporary work permits.

The main justification is precedent and executive prosecutorial discretion. Certainly prosecutorial discretion cannot justify the work permits, but that’s where precedent comes in.

The precedent relied on is real, but the President’s move is an expansion of the precedent. Maybe not a dramatic expansion. In both the President’s argument and in the counter-arguments, it is clear that the move is an expansion in degree but not radically dissimilar to what has happened before.

I tend to think that the precedents were probably also technically abuses of power, at least the first George Bush’s.  But the biggest difference between the President’s move and the prior precedents is that the precedents weren’t controversial. They were make-work fudges for technocratic problems that most people probably never heard of. The President is making a partisan move on one of the great and controversial issues of the day. He is granting amnesty to millions of illegal immigrants because the elected legislators won’t. It is a sign of a decaying political order.  Roman comparisons include the Roman officers postponing votes of the Assembly on the grounds that the sacrifices were inauspicious for nakedly partisan reasons; the expansion of the Tribunician powers through a threat to veto all state action unless some positive program the Tribune wanted was carried out; and the use of the Tribunal veto to veto action of the Assembly.

Worse, although the move is theoretically reversible, the President’s partisans are openly suggesting that his move will be practically irreversible, and many on the Right agree.  If so, the President has just made legislation. It is a good paving stone in the path to the Coming Caesars.

Probably worst of all, it is an open secret among the President’s partisans that the move is intended, long term, to get rid of the troublesome whites. It is intended to minoritize native stock Anglos (the Labor party in England has adopted a similar strategy). The normally sedate Walter Russell Mead summarizes here:

[Liberal Democrats assums] that Latinos are the new blacks: a permanent racial minority or subgroup in the American political system that will always feel separate from the country’s white population and, like African-Americans, will vote Democratic. On this assumption, the Democratic approach to Hispanic Americans should be clear: the more the merrier. That is a particularly popular view on the more leftish side of the Democratic coalition, where there’s a deep and instinctive fear and loathing of Jacksonian America (those “bitterly clinging” to their guns, their Bibles, and their individualistic economic and social beliefs). The great shining hope of the American left is that a demographic transition through immigration and birthrates will finally make all those tiresome white people largely irrelevant.

 

Population replacement programs, no matter how civilly conducted, are the politics of the knife.  Roman parallels would be the populares effort to secure votes for non-citizens in the era surrounding the Social War.  They had justice on their side, but too many of them too obviously only cared about dramatically shifting the electorate.

The GOP’s response is bound to make things worse.  The GOP will probably have to respond by some escalation of their own, such as withholding approval for any presidential appointee, or another budget shtudown, or else further alienate their own core supporters with the conviction that they cannot express their aims through normal politics.

 

Comments (7)
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November 25th, 2014 12:47:08
7 comments

Zen
November 25, 2014

While I am not a fan of the President’s move, I don’t think his cynical politics understands them well. Yes, for the moment they tend to vote Democrat, because they are very poor. But their fault is not, as a whole, one of indolence. Their fault is they wanted to work and make a better life, and were willing to break the law to do so.

That is a very small fault, indeed.

As they work hard, they will continue to prosper and become more middle-class. They have large, strong families and a good work ethic. Not all is good, but over all, I think we will see some great things out of them.

I think this nation has the greater fault, in that,
(A) our declining birthrates has effectively created a vacuum they are filling.
(B) we have been willing to turn a blind eye while they are exploited for low wages, as second class citizens.

We need to integrate them.

But regarding the experts, both political and otherwise, Isaiah said of the United States

“And the spirit of Egypt shall fail in the midst thereof; and I will destroy the counsel thereof: and they shall seek to the idols, and to the charmers, and to them that have familiar spirits, and to the wizards…..

Surely the princes of Zoan are fools, the counsel of the wise counsellors of Pharaoh is become brutish: how say ye unto Pharaoh, I am the son of the wise, the son of ancient kings? …

The Lord hath mingled a perverse spirit in the midst thereof: and they have caused Egypt to err in every work thereof, as a drunken man staggereth in his vomit.” Isa. 19:3,11,14


Man SL
November 25, 2014

* Yes, for the moment they tend to vote Democrat, because they are very poor.*

Hispanics vote disproportionately Democratic even when you control for income.

Non-recent immigrant Hispanics also vote disproportionately Democratic.

Judis and Texeira’s book isn’t gospel, but it does consider and address some of the kinds of points you’re making.

*As they work hard, they will continue to prosper and become more middle-class. They have large, strong families and a good work ethic. Not all is good, but over all, I think we will see some great things out of them. *

Sailer et al. claim that the data shows that the second and third generations are assimilating down into American lower class norms and show worse results, not better. I haven’t evaluated the data myself.

* our declining birthrates has effectively created a vacuum they are filling.*

Strongly disagree. It’s our lax enforcement and relatively high wages. High wage countries with low birth rates and strong immigration enforcement don’t have much immigration problems. Low wage countries with low birth rates also don’t have much immigration problems.


John Mansfield
November 25, 2014

After his proclamation, Pres. Obama went to a high school in Las Vegas with a two-thirds Hispanic student body. That caught my attention because I graduated from a high school in Las Vegas thirty years ago. We had lots of Hispanics then, or more particularly Mexicans in those days, some of them relatives of mine, but nothing close to two-thirds, even in a lower-class part of town like mine. The high school my old house is zoned for also has a two-thirds Hispanic student body, and one-sixth white and one-sixth black. The school is only five years old and is in “turnaround” status. I owe a lot to my old Clark County schools; I specifically acknowledged them in my PhD dissertation. Fewer of my thirty-years-younger successors will be able to do or say the same.


Man SL
November 25, 2014

On population replacement. Lower wages lower birth rates. Lots of immigration means lower wages. Immigrants help make the vacuum.


Vader
November 25, 2014

“Sailer et al. claim that the data shows that the second and third generations are assimilating down into American lower class norms and show worse results, not better. I haven’t evaluated the data myself.”

This was the anecdotal observation of a police officer friend of mine. The first-generation immigrants were fairly law-abiding and hard-working. Their kids born here were the gangbangers and criminals.


Bruce Charlton
November 26, 2014

I would quibble that the real reason for such policies is electoral strategy – that is an excuse, not the reason.

The reason is, I would have thought very obviously, the elites hatred and animus and despair. There, I think, all remote historical parallels break down.

I don’t think there ever has been an elite which strategically – and quite explicitly and openly for the past 50 years – has subverted and attacked its own society, on so many fronts and in so many ways.

(If you have read the US president’s autobiography, this motivation is perfectly clear, indeed obsessive, is indeed the focus of the book – as appropriate given its chosen ghost writer. It takes a special kind of metaphysical blindness to deny something so very obvious. And this is the chosen leader of The West.)

This problem is very deep – as deep as the intractable insanity of those who reject God.

http://www.orthodoxytoday.org/articles/SolzhenitsynHarvard.php

Such people as our ruling elites have not been seen in such number, and with such power, on earth – before the past century.

Therefore the main parallel is the Modern Revolutions, the French of 1779, especially the Russian Revolution of 1917 and other Leftist revolutions… in which elites embarked on rampages of hate-fuelled destruction (focused on Christianity).

The anti-Christian nature of the Russian Revolution has been obscured in the West – pre-revolution, Russia was perhaps the most devoutly Christian nation in the world; so the attack needed to be and was *extremely* harsh; comparable in scale and degree with the Nazi Holocaust (tens of millions killed overall – and the effort especially focused on bishops, monks and priests who were almost annihilated, then replaced with atheist communists) but almost unknown in the West.

Again, it takes a peculiar – but almost universal – moral insanity to ignore this.

But then, we have just lived through the destruction of Christianity in its birthplace of the Middle East – and nobody has noticed or been at all bothered – http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/opinion/article4269587.ece .

Think about this stuff when modern media-savvy people assert that they are ‘well informed’, like to ‘keep up’ with ‘the news’ and so on…

We know everything, believe everything; except what is obvious and vitally important – about *that* we are a blend of ignorant and skeptical.


Vader
November 26, 2014

I think theirs is a combination of Marxist and Darwinist thinking: If you break enough eggs, eventually an omelette will arise.

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