Is liberty in danger

 Pages PREV 1 2 3 4 NEXT
 

Seekster:

If you want to start a new life in this country, come on in. But its seriously shouldn't be too much to ask for you to follow the proper procedure. Otherwise you should just do away with the border altogether because it doesn't mean much. Now sure our legal immigration process badly needs to be streamlined but "its hard" is not a valid excuse for now following the law.

It's not just 'hard'. It's incredibly difficult. It's ridiculously difficult. We hurt ourselves by making it so hard. And it seems we both agree on that, a bit? That we should make it easier to get in.

And, while you're at it, I say, let them fill the paperwork out at their home, rather than waste both our time and our money shipping them back so they can come back in.

If you're doing something, RIGHT NOW, that is illegal... but I'm on the verge of making it legal because the law is stupid as shit and costs us all money and what not... why make it so you have to stop what you're doing (on my dime), turn around, march an arbitrary distance (again on my dime) then turn right back around and start it back up again.

Fill the form out in your illegal residence, make it legal, no harm no foul, and that's basically what amnesty is about.

Because who is being served by having us spend billions to ship them 300 miles away to have them sign a form and walk right the hell back in?

Us? Pft, no. Unless you think upwards of a trillion dollars more in debt is doing us a favor, then no. Them? Certainly not. Then why spend the money? Especially when we're strapped for cash?

Amnesty basically is the quickest and easiest way to do what we want to do ANYWAYS. Because it effectively costs us nothing.

Think about it logically. What are we concerned with, in the first place, with immigrants?

Money.

Oh, yeah, some people will say race or 'oh no we'll all be Hispanic by 2012', but fuck those people and I don't frankly give a shit what they want.

Money is the only real problem here that should be addressed.

We're both agreeing that them coming in is fine, and that it should be legal. We're agreeing that the best monetary benefit to our country is for them to fill the form out and be legal.

OK.

Then why are we spending money to send them back, so they can come right back in legally? Why not give them amnesty, let them fill the form out at their house, then stay and save ourselves a shit ton of money.

Pride? Superiority?

I'm sure we could hire somebody to piss on their front doors for a lot less if we just want to feel 'big'.

That's ridiculous.

Danny Ocean:

Seekster:

Companies can and have sued state and federal governments in state and federal courts and won before.

The USA is not an accurate representation of the World.

Its not like the government can order the court to rule against the company regardless of the facts.

Sure it can. It happens all the fucking time. I distinctly remember reading about an example (I think it was the Chinese) of a government just flipping the finger to a company who tried to sue the state. Naturally, this used to happen a lot more in the past, before independent judiciaries and central banks were created. It's worth remembering that much of the world doesn't have either of those things, even now.
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

If you owe someone money and you never pay them back then you are in the wrong.

This isn't a moral argument. I am merely stating facts.

"However, it cannot do that, because the EU places greater value on the confidence and capitalisation of financial institutions than it does on the wellbeing of the Greeks."

The EU places a greater importance on the European Economy than the economy of Greece, yeah I think most everyone does.

Basically, however, watch your words. It places a greater importance on maintaining the confidence that banks have for European governments to pay their debts. That is not the same as "The Economy."

I think that part is very relevant and I am curious why you crossed it out as if its not true.

I crossed it out as if it wasn't relevant, because it isn't relevant.
With that paragraph you were attempting to shift the argument from one of whether or not governments are bound to their debts to one of US fiscal policy, which you know a lot more about and feel you are more likely to win, or at least grind me down until I can't be bothered any more as normally happens.
In other words, it's a straw man.

The stuff above the line above is the actual argument. Honestly, if you think I'm just pulling this out of my ass I can provide you with a great source.

Yes I know its not...kind of sad in some ways but good in other ways.

Oh well sure the Chinese can, the Chinese government is not exactly a free or open system of government.

Legally if you owe someone money and can't pay them back then you owe them.

In the interest of space and my free time I wont push the issue but that wasn't a straw man.

Damien Granz:

Seekster:

If you want to start a new life in this country, come on in. But its seriously shouldn't be too much to ask for you to follow the proper procedure. Otherwise you should just do away with the border altogether because it doesn't mean much. Now sure our legal immigration process badly needs to be streamlined but "its hard" is not a valid excuse for now following the law.

It's not just 'hard'. It's incredibly difficult. It's ridiculously difficult. We hurt ourselves by making it so hard. And it seems we both agree on that, a bit? That we should make it easier to get in.

And, while you're at it, I say, let them fill the paperwork out at their home, rather than waste both our time and our money shipping them back so they can come back in.

If you're doing something, RIGHT NOW, that is illegal... but I'm on the verge of making it legal because the law is stupid as shit and costs us all money and what not... why make it so you have to stop what you're doing (on my dime), turn around, march an arbitrary distance (again on my dime) then turn right back around and start it back up again.

Fill the form out in your illegal residence, make it legal, no harm no foul, and that's basically what amnesty is about.

Because who is being served by having us spend billions to ship them 300 miles away to have them sign a form and walk right the hell back in?

Us? Pft, no. Unless you think upwards of a trillion dollars more in debt is doing us a favor, then no. Them? Certainly not. Then why spend the money? Especially when we're strapped for cash?

Amnesty basically is the quickest and easiest way to do what we want to do ANYWAYS. Because it effectively costs us nothing.

Think about it logically. What are we concerned with, in the first place, with immigrants?

Money.

Oh, yeah, some people will say race or 'oh no we'll all be Hispanic by 2012', but fuck those people and I don't frankly give a shit what they want.

Money is the only real problem here that should be addressed.

We're both agreeing that them coming in is fine, and that it should be legal. We're agreeing that the best monetary benefit to our country is for them to fill the form out and be legal.

OK.

Then why are we spending money to send them back, so they can come right back in legally? Why not give them amnesty, let them fill the form out at their house, then stay and save ourselves a shit ton of money.

Pride? Superiority?

I'm sure we could hire somebody to piss on their front doors for a lot less if we just want to feel 'big'.

That's ridiculous.

Whatever adjectives you want to use, still doesnt justify it. Stealing is still against the law even if you are starving (of course if you are starving they do have free food in prison...also at a shelter or soup kitchen fyi and you can maintain your freedom in those).

It costs money to enforce the law, go figure.

We can quibble over the details later, I am not really against letting them pay a fine or back taxes or whatever and letting them apply for citizenship while in the country but as I said I can't support that sort of thing until we have at least some control over who comes into the country.

The Immigration debate is not and should not be about race, its about making sure that this country's laws are respected and that the government can do the most basic job that any government is required to do, namely secure its own sovereignty.

I would rather pay higher taxes to afford more border agents than give in and agree to amnesty which isnt solving the problem its just ignoring it. No money isnt the issue here.

Superiority? Hell I have more respect for someone who comes here legally and works hard to make a new life from essentially scrap than I do for people who were born into a stable family that has been here for generations (like my own situation). We are all Americans though so no I don't feel any kind of superiority or inferiority for that matter.

Damien Granz:


Edit: here's a link to a full size version of that image, because the snip broke it. :(

http://i.imgur.com/cmyr4.jpg

Also, I'm sort of not sure quite what to make of the discussion between you and seek, becasue on the ne hand, yes, it would be ludicrous to ship millions of illegals back accross the border only to immediately allow them to return legally. On the other hand, if you did ship them back, they'd almost certainly all be denied legal re-entry (which is rather related to why they entered illegally in the first place).

So, basically US immigration policy is totally fucked.

Danny Ocean:

Well then the best solution to your problem would be to end US agricultural subsidies so those Mexican farmers can actually earn a living in their own country. While you're at it, how about you get into the NAFTA spirit and try and to develop Mexico generally? It would fix quite a few problems, I think.

That would require the Ultimate Evil of Republicanism, giving money to poor people. As a result, our Benevolent Overlords have come up with an easier and more profitable plan: Make the US so miserably poor that Mexicans will have NO REASON to come to the US.

Seekster:

You see thats like solving the drug problem by legalizing drugs, it doesnt work, it just makes it so law enforcement can't do anything about it.

Bullshit. It worked with Alcohol, didn't it? (After Prohibition made Al Capone a rich and powerful man, of course.)

Seekster:
If you owe someone money and you never pay them back then you are in the wrong.

Why couldn't American Conservatives have decided to fixate on the parts of the Bible that condemn usury and require forgiveness of all debts instead of the parts about gays?

...because MONEY, of course. That was a rhetorical question. :-P

See Spot Run:

Also, I'm sort of not sure quite what to make of the discussion between you and seek, becasue on the ne hand, yes, it would be ludicrous to ship millions of illegals back accross the border only to immediately allow them to return legally. On the other hand, if you did ship them back, they'd almost certainly all be denied legal re-entry (which is rather related to why they entered illegally in the first place).

So, basically US immigration policy is totally fucked.

Both of us were agreeing on the policy that making legal immigration less confusing and more easy is better.

So, we were arguing off that point that 'if it was theoretically easy to get citizen ship... now what'.

Seekster:

Whatever adjectives you want to use, still doesn't justify it. Stealing is still against the law even if you are starving (of course if you are starving they do have free food in prison...also at a shelter or soup kitchen fyi and you can maintain your freedom in those).

Stealing what? They haven't stolen anything. We didn't let them pay. And in many cases, they did anyways, and over payed, because they couldn't claim their tax returns back. If anybody owes anybody money there's a likelihood we owe them money.

Seekster:
It costs money to enforce the law, go figure.

Yes, and if they're legal, we can charge them for that service the same as everyone else? What's your point?

Seekster:
We can quibble over the details later, I am not really against letting them pay a fine or back taxes or whatever and letting them apply for citizenship while in the country but as I said I can't support that sort of thing until we have at least some control over who comes into the country.

We'll get more control when we make the rules for entry less stupid. Control over who enters the country isn't about keeping people out (that's never going to work), but making sure that we know who is in and they're paying taxes and protected by our laws.

But as far as 'make them pay back taxes'.. chances are we owe THEM money anyways, so.. if you want to pay a shitload of illegal immigrants a shitload of money, sure? But they're not asking for us to pay that shit back. So it's in our best interest to call it even.

Seekster:
The Immigration debate is not and should not be about race, its about making sure that this country's laws are respected and that the government can do the most basic job that any government is required to do, namely secure its own sovereignty.

I agree it shouldn't be about race. I was saying that if you take race out of it, then the only reason to give a shit is monetary. Or dick waving. And I don't think the latter is worth sacrificing the former.

Seekster:
I would rather pay higher taxes to afford more border agents than give in and agree to amnesty which isn't solving the problem its just ignoring it.

You'd be willing to pay billions of dollars to fix a million dollar problem. When we're broke. What the fuck for. Pride?

You'd set your house on fire to settle an argument with your spouse? Because that's what you're asking us to do, and it's childish.

Seekster:
No money isn't the issue here.

But it's the only one that makes any practical sense to care about.

Seekster:
Superiority? Hell I have more respect for someone who comes here legally and works hard to make a new life from essentially scrap than I do for people who were born into a stable family that has been here for generations (like my own situation). We are all Americans though so no I don't feel any kind of superiority or inferiority for that matter.

OK, then if it's not about pride or superiority, then why inconvenience people on our dime for no reason?

The law fucked up. Was it the law? Yes. But we agree that the law was the one in the wrong, and that immigration should had been easier. So the mistake is OUR fault too. Let's call it even and get on with our lives rather than quibble about it, and get back to work on Monday, rather blowing money bitching about who was or wasn't more or less wrong in the situation.

Seekster:
If you owe someone money and you never pay them back then you are in the wrong.

If both parties are in the wrong, and it's unclear who owes who, and yet you spend a billion dollars to make back the unclear debt of a million dollars.. maybe you were 'right'? But you'd also be a moron.

Is blowing all this money to show you were 'right' worth it? Because frankly it's not.

Stagnant:

Gorfias:
1) Do you agree the responsiveness of government to popular will is a reasonable measure of liberty?

In the 18th Century, popular will was generally that Slavery was A-OK. Slavery. You know, the complete and utter stripping of any civil liberties and most human rights from a person, and them being used as property. The government responded, of course, by keeping slavery around. I feel that this is a pertinent question, Gorfias: would the people of the 18th century have had more or less liberty if the government had decided against popular opinion? If the answer isn't immediately obvious to you, then that's kinda sad.

Short translation: the vast majority of people in the USA are far too stupid and evil to have freedom, otherwise they'd want slavery restored.

Suppose that is even true. You appear to be writing that we need elite rule and you oppose responsive government. Correct?
Edit:
Does an increase in size, scope and power of government, in your opinion, increase its ability to oppose popular will?

Gorfias:

Short translation: the vast majority of people in the USA are far too stupid and evil to have freedom, otherwise they'd want slavery restored.

No.

The point is that popular will does not immediately equate to liberty. Where the popular voice is illiberal, it is obviously not a voice for liberty. The point being that it takes little or no effort to find popular opinions that are undoubtedly illiberal - such as opposition to gay marriage.

Damien Granz:

Seekster:

Whatever adjectives you want to use, still doesn't justify it. Stealing is still against the law even if you are starving (of course if you are starving they do have free food in prison...also at a shelter or soup kitchen fyi and you can maintain your freedom in those).

Stealing what? They haven't stolen anything. We didn't let them pay. And in many cases, they did anyways, and over payed, because they couldn't claim their tax returns back. If anybody owes anybody money there's a likelihood we owe them money.

Hmm? Oh no I was just making a comparison. You seemed to suggest that since legal immigration is hard (or very hard or whatever adjective you want to do) then an exception to the law should be made for illegal immigrants. I pointed out that it is folly to argue that a law should be disregarded just because it is difficult to follow. In doing this I pointed out that stealing food from a store is theft whether the thief is starving or not.

Damien Granz:

Seekster:
It costs money to enforce the law, go figure.

Yes, and if they're legal, we can charge them for that service the same as everyone else? What's your point?

If they were granted amnesty without following some kind of procedure like paying back taxes and starting the process to legal citizenship (perhaps from inside the country) then there would be no service to charge them for because enforcing immigration law would be redundant. If we are not going to enforce immigration laws then why even bother having immigration enforcement officials (and apparently cops arent allowed to enforce the law when it comes to immigration).

Damien Granz:

Seekster:
We can quibble over the details later, I am not really against letting them pay a fine or back taxes or whatever and letting them apply for citizenship while in the country but as I said I can't support that sort of thing until we have at least some control over who comes into the country.

We'll get more control when we make the rules for entry less stupid. Control over who enters the country isn't about keeping people out (that's never going to work), but making sure that we know who is in and they're paying taxes and protected by our laws.

But as far as 'make them pay back taxes'.. chances are we owe THEM money anyways, so.. if you want to pay a shitload of illegal immigrants a shitload of money, sure? But they're not asking for us to pay that shit back. So it's in our best interest to call it even.

Oh all sorts of good things would happen if the bureaucracy were not incompetent by nature (actually on second thought its the inefficiency of the bureaucracy that saves us from it but I digress). I am all for streamlining the system of legal immigration but that doesnt excuse illegal immigration.

Ah yes tax refunds. Im not a tax accountant (fortunately for me my Dad is) but as I said its not about the money its about enforcing the law and making sure the government can actually fulfill its basic requirement of securing our own territorial integrity. Besides you are talking about amnesty so clearly potentially lost tax revenue doesnt mean anything to you either so why are you bringing it up? Seems a bit hypocritical if you ask me.

Damien Granz:

Seekster:
The Immigration debate is not and should not be about race, its about making sure that this country's laws are respected and that the government can do the most basic job that any government is required to do, namely secure its own sovereignty.

I agree it shouldn't be about race. I was saying that if you take race out of it, then the only reason to give a shit is monetary. Or dick waving. And I don't think the latter is worth sacrificing the former.

What is it with liberals and shunning principle? Only reason is monetary or dick waving, *sigh* what nonsense. Does being able to have some control over who comes into the country mean nothing at all to you? If it doesnt then there are still national security interests that you left out. I do not consider money a valid basis for any argument on this issue. We have legal immigration and it has never been a huge money issue. If we hope for the illegal immigrants to someday become legal immigrants there is no reasons to suspect that legal immigration will suddenly become a huge money issue.

Damien Granz:

Seekster:
I would rather pay higher taxes to afford more border agents than give in and agree to amnesty which isn't solving the problem its just ignoring it.

You'd be willing to pay billions of dollars to fix a million dollar problem. When we're broke. What the fuck for. Pride?

You'd set your house on fire to settle an argument with your spouse? Because that's what you're asking us to do, and it's childish.

I don't follow you on either account. The government has a spending problem sure but its never been able to truly secure our borders so if they need more tax dollars to do so then I think that is a sound reason for actually raising taxes for pay for something that is of clear interest to all American citizens. As for the setting the house on fire thing, that just doesnt even seem to relate to what we are talking about.

Damien Granz:

Seekster:
No money isn't the issue here.

But it's the only one that makes any practical sense to care about.

How could you even say that?

Damien Granz:

Seekster:
Superiority? Hell I have more respect for someone who comes here legally and works hard to make a new life from essentially scrap than I do for people who were born into a stable family that has been here for generations (like my own situation). We are all Americans though so no I don't feel any kind of superiority or inferiority for that matter.

OK, then if it's not about pride or superiority, then why inconvenience people on our dime for no reason?

The law fucked up. Was it the law? Yes. But we agree that the law was the one in the wrong, and that immigration should had been easier. So the mistake is OUR fault too. Let's call it even and get on with our lives rather than quibble about it, and get back to work on Monday, rather blowing money bitching about who was or wasn't more or less wrong in the situation.

Same general reason we pay for a cop to write a traffic ticket when someone runs a red light even if nobody gets hurt in that particular instance. We live in a society based on the rule of law. It is foolhardy to argue for ignoring the rule of law for the sake of convenience. I ask you, do you think we should even have a border? If you do then you have to accept that having a border means controlling who crosses it at least to a reasonable degree and that means enforcing the relevant laws which means paying people to do that.

I agree with Socrates, even if you disagree with the law you must follow it or accept the consequences for breaking it (and the man practiced what he preached). What you are saying here is essentially "society is to blame so lets just let people who break the law off". Are you prepared to extend that line of argument beyond just immigration or will you be inconsistent and only apply it to laws you don't like?

Damien Granz:

Seekster:
If you owe someone money and you never pay them back then you are in the wrong.

If both parties are in the wrong, and it's unclear who owes who, and yet you spend a billion dollars to make back the unclear debt of a million dollars.. maybe you were 'right'? But you'd also be a moron.

Is blowing all this money to show you were 'right' worth it? Because frankly it's not.

Both parties are always in the wrong no matter what law we are talking about. As I said above unless you are prepared to simply ignore the law entirely in all cases then your argument is inconsistent. As for money, it irrelevant to the issue in my opinion.

Agema:

No.

The point is that popular will does not immediately equate to liberty. Where the popular voice is illiberal, it is obviously not a voice for liberty. The point being that it takes little or no effort to find popular opinions that are undoubtedly illiberal - such as opposition to gay marriage.

Is the point of liberty to protect unpopular opinions? If we are all equal than no matter what a majorities opinion on gay marriage they couldn't be denied their rights.

Rather than give Government power to dictate who can and can not be married shouldn't we elect to tell the government they can't tell us who can and can't get married. If we give Government the power to say one way or the other depending on popular opinion then we simply have a tyranny of the majority and a Government who legislate and dictate to us what is acceptable to us based on the "majority" opinion.

The Government shouldn't have the power to stop gay couples from getting married in the first place, to me that is too much control over gay individual's rights.

Gorfias:
Short translation: the vast majority of people in the USA are far too stupid and evil to have freedom, otherwise they'd want slavery restored.

Short translation: "I don't know how to read an argument".

No, that's not what I'm saying. I'm saying that there are enough people who are intolerant or ignorant enough to destroy, on purpose or by coincidence, the civil liberties of minority groups. I'm saying that we need an arm in place to ensure that the majority does not infringe upon the liberties of the minority.

Suppose that is even true. You appear to be writing that we need elite rule and you oppose responsive government. Correct?

No... I'm saying that we need an arm in place to ensure that the majority does not infringe upon the liberties of the minority. In other words, the fucking constitution.

Does an increase in size, scope and power of government, in your opinion, increase its ability to oppose popular will?

In the same way it increases its ability to impose or follow the popular will. Doesn't say much about whether it will or not, though.

Seekster:

Yes I know its not...kind of sad in some ways but good in other ways.

Legally if you owe someone money and can't pay them back then you owe them.

Zoom out. Your perspective is too America-centric. Centre the globe on the prime meridian and zoom out all the way.

There is no 'legally' when it comes to interstate relations. It is, as in any anarchic system, might makes right. Within the USA, a US firm can sue the US government in US courts. A US firm cannot sue the Nigerian Government in US courts unless the Nigerian Government agrees to it, for example, because US laws are not the laws of the world. This is why the Hague exists and why the UN exists; to try and provide an alternative court to whatever the might would rather you used.

Oh well sure the Chinese can, the Chinese government is not exactly a free or open system of government.

Most countries can. The Developed West is the exception, not the rule.

Even though you seem to agree, here's the source:
http://books.google.co.uk/books?hl=en&lr=&id=ak5fLB24ircC&oi=fnd&pg=PR1&dq=Eight+centuries+of+financial+folly&ots=S-KcIuov6B&sig=QLuffjhpO-Ffc0VpKOF7RwXWcIY#v=onepage&q=Eight%20centuries%20of%20financial%20folly&f=false

I must get that economics post typed up.

Danny Ocean:

Seekster:

Yes I know its not...kind of sad in some ways but good in other ways.

Legally if you owe someone money and can't pay them back then you owe them.

Zoom out. Your perspective is too America-centric. Centre the globe on the prime meridian and zoom out all the way.

There is no 'legally' when it comes to interstate relations. It is, as in any anarchic system, might makes right. Within the USA, a US firm can sue the US government in US courts. A US firm cannot sue the Nigerian Government in US courts unless the Nigerian Government agrees to it, for example, because US laws are not the laws of the world. This is why the Hague exists and why the UN exists; to try and provide an alternative court to whatever the might would rather you used.

Oh well sure the Chinese can, the Chinese government is not exactly a free or open system of government.

Most countries can. The Developed West is the exception, not the rule.

Even though you seem to agree, here's the source:
http://books.google.co.uk/books?hl=en&lr=&id=ak5fLB24ircC&oi=fnd&pg=PR1&dq=Eight+centuries+of+financial+folly&ots=S-KcIuov6B&sig=QLuffjhpO-Ffc0VpKOF7RwXWcIY#v=onepage&q=Eight%20centuries%20of%20financial%20folly&f=false

I must get that economics post typed up.

On the issue of illegal immigration I am only talking about the United States. I have little opinion on illegal immigration in other countries.

BP is not an American company. Jurisdiction would be determined by location in which the law is broken. If you do business in a country you agree to follow the business laws of the country you are operating in.

The US Supreme Court has proven to be by far the most impartial limb of the US government. It has ruled against the government in more than just a few cases.

aPod:
Is the point of liberty to protect unpopular opinions? If we are all equal than no matter what a majorities opinion on gay marriage they couldn't be denied their rights.

Not really, I'd say. But protecting unpopular views to a certain degree is liberal. I would argue that the majority gets some say over what goes and what doesn't for reasons of pragmatism.

Damien Granz:

See Spot Run:

Also, I'm sort of not sure quite what to make of the discussion between you and seek, becasue on the ne hand, yes, it would be ludicrous to ship millions of illegals back accross the border only to immediately allow them to return legally. On the other hand, if you did ship them back, they'd almost certainly all be denied legal re-entry (which is rather related to why they entered illegally in the first place).

So, basically US immigration policy is totally fucked.

Both of us were agreeing on the policy that making legal immigration less confusing and more easy is better.

So, we were arguing off that point that 'if it was theoretically easy to get citizen ship... now what'.

Ah, missed that. apologies.

Agema:

aPod:
Is the point of liberty to protect unpopular opinions? If we are all equal than no matter what a majorities opinion on gay marriage they couldn't be denied their rights.

Not really, I'd say. But protecting unpopular views to a certain degree is liberal. I would argue that the majority gets some say over what goes and what doesn't for reasons of pragmatism.

Yeah, it has to be tempered to a certain degree, to make society work. Just because your opinion is that murdering people from a clock tower with a sniper rifle is justified, liberals aren't going to be like "SURE THING MAN".

There's a balance between liberty and society that has to be maintained.

See Spot Run:

Damien Granz:

See Spot Run:

Also, I'm sort of not sure quite what to make of the discussion between you and seek, becasue on the ne hand, yes, it would be ludicrous to ship millions of illegals back accross the border only to immediately allow them to return legally. On the other hand, if you did ship them back, they'd almost certainly all be denied legal re-entry (which is rather related to why they entered illegally in the first place).

So, basically US immigration policy is totally fucked.

Both of us were agreeing on the policy that making legal immigration less confusing and more easy is better.

So, we were arguing off that point that 'if it was theoretically easy to get citizen ship... now what'.

Ah, missed that. apologies.

Nooo problem. I know how it can be to see a giant ass wall of text between two people and miss things. I'm surprised anybody but Seekster looked at it in the first place.

Seekster:
Hmm? Oh no I was just making a comparison. You seemed to suggest that since legal immigration is hard (or very hard or whatever adjective you want to do) then an exception to the law should be made for illegal immigrants. I pointed out that it is folly to argue that a law should be disregarded just because it is difficult to follow. In doing this I pointed out that stealing food from a store is theft whether the thief is starving or not.

The law serves us, not the other way around. If the law is difficult to follow because the law is written badly, and it's costing the country to uphold without providing any benefit to the country or her people, then the law has to change, not the people.

It's.. to be honest, downright silly to uphold some archaic law that keeps us from moving forward as a people for no other reason than 'just because'.

This might be a divergence from our viewpoints, but I don't see the law as sacred. I see it as a tool of society to make society easier to live in.

If we make it against the law to, say, murder, it's because living in a society where that sort of thing is discouraged is better for that society. If we have a law that says, that every Tuesday we have to just set fire to a giant pile of circulated money because somebody 100 years ago thought it was hilarious, and it serves nobody, then we should change the law.

Seekster:
If they were granted amnesty without following some kind of procedure like paying back taxes and starting the process to legal citizenship (perhaps from inside the country)

Dude, amnesty is being offered as a part of the process to legal citizenship. The steps are:

Step One: Amnesty. You are no longer in threat of being prosecuted for the past crime of living illegally in the United States, provided you move on to step two:
Step Two: A fast, open, and easy track towards legal citizenship.

Without amnesty, we're spending big cash to ship people back that, if Step Two is implemented, are going to walk right back in. Without step two, they're not going to come to light or pay these taxes you want them to pay even if we give them amnesty, and we're never going to find them.

Seekster:
then there would be no service to charge them for because enforcing immigration law would be redundant.

Whooooooo cares? You say this like the goal of society is to enforce laws even if that means it has to hang itself to death.

Seekster:
If we are not going to enforce immigration laws then why even bother having immigration enforcement officials (and apparently cops aren't allowed to enforce the law when it comes to immigration).

First of all, your argument seems to be like "The goal of society is to have immigration police, no matter what. Anything else, schools, libraries, roads.. that's secondary to the goal of having this one police force."

Second they'll be around to enforce more sane laws.

Look, the current laws for immigration are screwed. They have to change. Everybody knows it. You even seem to agree that they do. As I've said about 20 thousand times, there's no reason for us to shoot ourselves in the package during this transition. Amnesty is the most reasonable method of performing this transition, while also making ourselves not look like the bad guy, and it's the cheapest.

Seekster:
Oh all sorts of good things would happen if the bureaucracy were not incompetent by nature (actually on second thought its the inefficiency of the bureaucracy that saves us from it but I digress). I am all for streamlining the system of legal immigration but that doesn't excuse illegal immigration.

Uh, yeah, but those people will no longer be breaking a law when it doesn't exist, and so punishing them for it just wastes our time, again.

Seekster:
Ah yes tax refunds. I'm not a tax accountant (fortunately for me my Dad is) but as I said its not about the money its about enforcing the law

A laaaaw that wooooooon't exiiiiiist. Whaa whaa whaaaa. We're back at this again. Amnesty is the first step towards getting these people on the track to obeying the law. It's a part of a process that says "Sorry that our law was fucked up and you had little choice but starve or break it! Here's a less dumb law, and we offer you a blind eye if you come out of the woodwork and sign up under the less dumb one!"

Seekster:
and making sure the government can actually fulfill its basic requirement of securing our own territorial integrity.

Which it will with less stupid laws? Again, amnesty is a part of a larger program, and doesn't solve jack without the rest of the package.

Seekster:
Besides you are talking about amnesty so clearly potentially lost tax revenue doesn't mean anything to you either so why are you bringing it up? Seems a bit hypocritical if you ask me.

Uh, you brought it up, hah? What the crap. I was addressing a concern you had. I don't give a flying shit if we don't collect money in the past from them because the past is really done with.

I am concerned with collecting the proper amount in the future, but again, the only way to do that....

Seekster:
What is it with liberals and shunning principle?

Dude, stop with this ad hominem sort of thing. It's not about 'liberals shunning principle'. If you're not catholic and you eat meat during Lent, are you shunning principle? No? It's just you have different principles maybe?

We're not fucking animals. We're driven by principles too. Yes, they ain't always gonna line up and what not, perfectly with yours.

I'd think admitting that my country made a mistake and acting to repair that mistake, while at the same time not breaking my own bank over it, is still principle driven.

Seekster:
Only reason is monetary or dick waving, *sigh* what nonsense. Does being able to have some control over who comes into the country mean nothing at all to you?

Go back to the source then. Why is control over who comes into the country important? We're a free market (for the most part), and that's part of our ideals and what not, so part of that is letting people vote for their feet if they don't like our laws, and part of our ideals is taking in people who've had enough of their own country and want to be part of us. We're a nation of immigrants. Unless you're 100% Native American, then you have no real moral standing to say "Lol, no vacancies" when it comes to immigration.

Our current laws have abandoned some pretty decent ideals, and so we're at fault. We need to own up and change that, without punishing people in the process.

Follow the current process of immigration, and it's comically bad. I mean, really, if it wasn't a tragedy, it's comedic gold. I know a lot of people dealing, legally, with this situation right now.

If our immigration laws had a theme, it'd be Yakety Sax.

Seekster:
If it doesn't then there are still national security interests that you left out.

Is our current laws making us more secure? Nope. The dudes that did 9/11 were here legally anyways. I'm not saying that, we remove the boarder or stop checking packages at airports.

I'm saying the paperwork should be a simple process, and I'm saying that we should retroactively extend that simplified process back to people, as a method of fostering community without breaking our bank.

Seekster:
I do not consider money a valid basis for any argument on this issue.

OK, but as somebody that claims to be an economic conservative, and claims to care about fiscal responsibility at all realistic costs, you gotta admit that cracking the piggy bank open to spend a billion dollars to save a million is gotta be pretty stupid, right?

Seekster:
We have legal immigration and it has never been a huge money issue.

Yeah, but our laws are, right now, incredibly stupid. I mean, honest to god, please play through the process on your own.

Seekster:
If we hope for the illegal immigrants to someday become legal immigrants there is no reasons to suspect that legal immigration will suddenly become a huge money issue.

If we hope for them to become legal, we might promise not to deport them if they sign up. Which... is what amnesty is?

Seekster:
I don't follow you on either account. The government has a spending problem sure but its never been able to truly secure our borders so if they need more tax dollars to do so then I think that is a sound reason for actually raising taxes for pay for something that is of clear interest to all American citizens.

See, this is where the whole 'fiscal conservative' thing falls apart often. You think it's fiscally conservative to spend, what would amount to trillions of dollars, to secure a boarder with a friendly nation, because a bunch of people are sneaking up to pick strawberries. You're willing to spend big money, reaaaal big money, on a problem that honestly solves itself for free by making legal immigration easy.

Effectively you're spending 10 dollars now to save us 5 dollars later, when we can't afford 10 dollars.

Building a giant wall between our countries isn't gonna make us safe, because the age of castles and shit are over. At best, it makes you feel more safe, like those silly automatic lights that pop on and off randomly in the night.

But you're not willing to spend 5 dollars on medicine or education now to save us 10 dollars later, because we don't have 5 dollars, because spending what we don't have isn't 'fiscally conservative'.

This disconnect really bothers the shit out of me. We can't spend to cure, feed or educate a real person, but we can spend to fantasize that safe from threats.

Seekster:
How could you even say that (money is the issue that matters)?

Because it's the only one that really does, at least with amnesty. If the illegal immigrants in America right now were secretly terrorists.. amnesty isn't gonna make it easier.. or harder.. for them. They're already here. If they have their jugs of anthrax or whatever, then they're already on their way killing people.

Seekster:
Same general reason we pay for a cop to write a traffic ticket when someone runs a red light even if nobody gets hurt in that particular instance.

Yeah, but if those traffic lights were permanently red, then people are going to run them, and they're stupid.

See, that's the problem with your analogy. This isn't a case of ticketing a person for running a traffic light. This is a case of ticketing a person for running a traffic light in a traffic system where every light is red, and always will be red.

And before you say 'too bad, eat shit and don't drive', be aware that many places will not ticket motorcyclists for running traffic lights at night as long as they stop, because motorcycles are incapable of tripping the sensor that activates the light, for those that run on that sort of thing and aren't on a timer.

Because the law, in that case, is attempting to make sense and attempting to make people safe, without just being stupid as hell about it.

Seekster:
We live in a society based on the rule of law.

Again, the law exists to serve society, society doesn't exist to serve the law. We value the rule of law because when written sanely, some laws make a better society. But this is a case where the law is universally messed up, and we also live in a society with a fluid law set that can and is changing to suit our needs. This law isn't. It has to change.

Seekster:
It is foolhardy to argue for ignoring the rule of law for the sake of convenience.

It's foolish for the country to put its neck in a noose and hang itself because the law said so, too.

Seekster:
I ask you, do you think we should even have a border?

Yeah, nobody said nothing about removing it. We said, make it easier for people to get in, then allow the people that got stopped for the old, bad, law, to get amnesty, so they're not punished for breaking the old bad law, and so they can start abiding by the newer one.

Seekster:
If you do then you have to accept that having a border means controlling who crosses it at least to a reasonable degree and that means enforcing the relevant laws which means paying people to do that.

Yeah, but we're not currently doing it to 'a reasonable degree'. That's my whole point. This is a method to make it a reasonable degree without bankrupting ourselves to do it.

Seekster:
I agree with Socrates, even if you disagree with the law you must follow it or accept the consequences for breaking it (and the man practiced what he preached).

Yes, then Athens lost a giant war over it. Wow! Rape and pillage was SO much better for them wasn't it! Good thing the law wasn't harmed!

Seekster:
What you are saying here is essentially "society is to blame so lets just let people who break the law off". Are you prepared to extend that line of argument beyond just immigration or will you be inconsistent and only apply it to laws you don't like?

Nope, only to instances where we're wrong and/or the law is screwing us as a society over for no real benefit. See, the key phrase there was "(when) Society is to blame" and the unspoken key phrase is also "when the law is incredibly stupid and hurts us as a people for no reason".

Seekster:
Both parties are always in the wrong no matter what law we are talking about.

What are you even talking about?

Seekster:
As I said above unless you are prepared to simply ignore the law entirely in all cases then your argument is inconsistent.

1) Arguing for or against consistency implies that I give a shit about consistency. Luckily for you I usually do. But the law, again, to me is a tool that society uses to further its aims.

2) I think the whole 'when we're wrong, or the law hurts us as a people, then change something' is pretty consistent. That's a pretty strong caveat there if I saw one.

Seekster:
As for money, it irrelevant to the issue in my opinion.

Then why bring up the taxes and fines and crap? If money's irrelevant, your whole argument over 'they owe me a fine/taxes' is pointless.

Damien Granz:
snip

Seekster:
snip

To interject again briefly on the topic of "paying back taxes" and "lost revenue" pertaining to illegal immigrants.

A real quick internet search indicates that roughly 6 million illegal immigrants file income tax returns in the US each year, with the CBO reporting that 50-75% of all undocumented workers pay federal, state and local taxes. Plus they pay sales tax on virtually every dollar they spend, and for most illegals, nearly every dollar earned is immediately spent.

Social security reports that payments from illegals account for 7 billion dollars of revenue yearly.

And they pay all this money while ineligible for any of the benefits associated therewith.
If you're operating on the premise that illegals are costing the country money because they don't pay taxes, then your argument is flawed in the extreme.

Results of studies vary, but it's likely that the actual direct financial impact of undocumented workers in the US is minor, as studies tend to show that they're more likely to pay taxes than use government services, and the proportion of those services that they make use of is minimal when compared to the use of those same services by legal residents.

There are all kinds of reasons that you might want to get a handle on illegal immigration.

Lost tax dollars isn't a very good one.

Damien Granz:

Seekster:
Hmm? Oh no I was just making a comparison. You seemed to suggest that since legal immigration is hard (or very hard or whatever adjective you want to do) then an exception to the law should be made for illegal immigrants. I pointed out that it is folly to argue that a law should be disregarded just because it is difficult to follow. In doing this I pointed out that stealing food from a store is theft whether the thief is starving or not.

The law serves us, not the other way around. If the law is difficult to follow because the law is written badly, and it's costing the country to uphold without providing any benefit to the country or her people, then the law has to change, not the people.

It's.. to be honest, downright silly to uphold some archaic law that keeps us from moving forward as a people for no other reason than 'just because'.

This might be a divergence from our viewpoints, but I don't see the law as sacred. I see it as a tool of society to make society easier to live in.

If we make it against the law to, say, murder, it's because living in a society where that sort of thing is discouraged is better for that society. If we have a law that says, that every Tuesday we have to just set fire to a giant pile of circulated money because somebody 100 years ago thought it was hilarious, and it serves nobody, then we should change the law.

Seekster:
If they were granted amnesty without following some kind of procedure like paying back taxes and starting the process to legal citizenship (perhaps from inside the country)

Dude, amnesty is being offered as a part of the process to legal citizenship. The steps are:

Step One: Amnesty. You are no longer in threat of being prosecuted for the past crime of living illegally in the United States, provided you move on to step two:
Step Two: A fast, open, and easy track towards legal citizenship.

Without amnesty, we're spending big cash to ship people back that, if Step Two is implemented, are going to walk right back in. Without step two, they're not going to come to light or pay these taxes you want them to pay even if we give them amnesty, and we're never going to find them.

Seekster:
then there would be no service to charge them for because enforcing immigration law would be redundant.

Whooooooo cares? You say this like the goal of society is to enforce laws even if that means it has to hang itself to death.

Seekster:
If we are not going to enforce immigration laws then why even bother having immigration enforcement officials (and apparently cops aren't allowed to enforce the law when it comes to immigration).

First of all, your argument seems to be like "The goal of society is to have immigration police, no matter what. Anything else, schools, libraries, roads.. that's secondary to the goal of having this one police force."

Second they'll be around to enforce more sane laws.

Look, the current laws for immigration are screwed. They have to change. Everybody knows it. You even seem to agree that they do. As I've said about 20 thousand times, there's no reason for us to shoot ourselves in the package during this transition. Amnesty is the most reasonable method of performing this transition, while also making ourselves not look like the bad guy, and it's the cheapest.

Seekster:
Oh all sorts of good things would happen if the bureaucracy were not incompetent by nature (actually on second thought its the inefficiency of the bureaucracy that saves us from it but I digress). I am all for streamlining the system of legal immigration but that doesn't excuse illegal immigration.

Uh, yeah, but those people will no longer be breaking a law when it doesn't exist, and so punishing them for it just wastes our time, again.

Seekster:
Ah yes tax refunds. I'm not a tax accountant (fortunately for me my Dad is) but as I said its not about the money its about enforcing the law

A laaaaw that wooooooon't exiiiiiist. Whaa whaa whaaaa. We're back at this again. Amnesty is the first step towards getting these people on the track to obeying the law. It's a part of a process that says "Sorry that our law was fucked up and you had little choice but starve or break it! Here's a less dumb law, and we offer you a blind eye if you come out of the woodwork and sign up under the less dumb one!"

Seekster:
and making sure the government can actually fulfill its basic requirement of securing our own territorial integrity.

Which it will with less stupid laws? Again, amnesty is a part of a larger program, and doesn't solve jack without the rest of the package.

Seekster:
Besides you are talking about amnesty so clearly potentially lost tax revenue doesn't mean anything to you either so why are you bringing it up? Seems a bit hypocritical if you ask me.

Uh, you brought it up, hah? What the crap. I was addressing a concern you had. I don't give a flying shit if we don't collect money in the past from them because the past is really done with.

I am concerned with collecting the proper amount in the future, but again, the only way to do that....

Seekster:
What is it with liberals and shunning principle?

Dude, stop with this ad hominem sort of thing. It's not about 'liberals shunning principle'. If you're not catholic and you eat meat during Lent, are you shunning principle? No? It's just you have different principles maybe?

We're not fucking animals. We're driven by principles too. Yes, they ain't always gonna line up and what not, perfectly with yours.

I'd think admitting that my country made a mistake and acting to repair that mistake, while at the same time not breaking my own bank over it, is still principle driven.

Seekster:
Only reason is monetary or dick waving, *sigh* what nonsense. Does being able to have some control over who comes into the country mean nothing at all to you?

Go back to the source then. Why is control over who comes into the country important? We're a free market (for the most part), and that's part of our ideals and what not, so part of that is letting people vote for their feet if they don't like our laws, and part of our ideals is taking in people who've had enough of their own country and want to be part of us. We're a nation of immigrants. Unless you're 100% Native American, then you have no real moral standing to say "Lol, no vacancies" when it comes to immigration.

Our current laws have abandoned some pretty decent ideals, and so we're at fault. We need to own up and change that, without punishing people in the process.

Follow the current process of immigration, and it's comically bad. I mean, really, if it wasn't a tragedy, it's comedic gold. I know a lot of people dealing, legally, with this situation right now.

If our immigration laws had a theme, it'd be Yakety Sax.

Seekster:
If it doesn't then there are still national security interests that you left out.

Is our current laws making us more secure? Nope. The dudes that did 9/11 were here legally anyways. I'm not saying that, we remove the boarder or stop checking packages at airports.

I'm saying the paperwork should be a simple process, and I'm saying that we should retroactively extend that simplified process back to people, as a method of fostering community without breaking our bank.

Seekster:
I do not consider money a valid basis for any argument on this issue.

OK, but as somebody that claims to be an economic conservative, and claims to care about fiscal responsibility at all realistic costs, you gotta admit that cracking the piggy bank open to spend a billion dollars to save a million is gotta be pretty stupid, right?

Seekster:
We have legal immigration and it has never been a huge money issue.

Yeah, but our laws are, right now, incredibly stupid. I mean, honest to god, please play through the process on your own.

Seekster:
If we hope for the illegal immigrants to someday become legal immigrants there is no reasons to suspect that legal immigration will suddenly become a huge money issue.

If we hope for them to become legal, we might promise not to deport them if they sign up. Which... is what amnesty is?

Seekster:
I don't follow you on either account. The government has a spending problem sure but its never been able to truly secure our borders so if they need more tax dollars to do so then I think that is a sound reason for actually raising taxes for pay for something that is of clear interest to all American citizens.

See, this is where the whole 'fiscal conservative' thing falls apart often. You think it's fiscally conservative to spend, what would amount to trillions of dollars, to secure a boarder with a friendly nation, because a bunch of people are sneaking up to pick strawberries. You're willing to spend big money, reaaaal big money, on a problem that honestly solves itself for free by making legal immigration easy.

Effectively you're spending 10 dollars now to save us 5 dollars later, when we can't afford 10 dollars.

Building a giant wall between our countries isn't gonna make us safe, because the age of castles and shit are over. At best, it makes you feel more safe, like those silly automatic lights that pop on and off randomly in the night.

But you're not willing to spend 5 dollars on medicine or education now to save us 10 dollars later, because we don't have 5 dollars, because spending what we don't have isn't 'fiscally conservative'.

This disconnect really bothers the shit out of me. We can't spend to cure, feed or educate a real person, but we can spend to fantasize that safe from threats.

Seekster:
How could you even say that (money is the issue that matters)?

Because it's the only one that really does, at least with amnesty. If the illegal immigrants in America right now were secretly terrorists.. amnesty isn't gonna make it easier.. or harder.. for them. They're already here. If they have their jugs of anthrax or whatever, then they're already on their way killing people.

Seekster:
Same general reason we pay for a cop to write a traffic ticket when someone runs a red light even if nobody gets hurt in that particular instance.

Yeah, but if those traffic lights were permanently red, then people are going to run them, and they're stupid.

See, that's the problem with your analogy. This isn't a case of ticketing a person for running a traffic light. This is a case of ticketing a person for running a traffic light in a traffic system where every light is red, and always will be red.

And before you say 'too bad, eat shit and don't drive', be aware that many places will not ticket motorcyclists for running traffic lights at night as long as they stop, because motorcycles are incapable of tripping the sensor that activates the light, for those that run on that sort of thing and aren't on a timer.

Because the law, in that case, is attempting to make sense and attempting to make people safe, without just being stupid as hell about it.

Seekster:
We live in a society based on the rule of law.

Again, the law exists to serve society, society doesn't exist to serve the law. We value the rule of law because when written sanely, some laws make a better society. But this is a case where the law is universally messed up, and we also live in a society with a fluid law set that can and is changing to suit our needs. This law isn't. It has to change.

Seekster:
It is foolhardy to argue for ignoring the rule of law for the sake of convenience.

It's foolish for the country to put its neck in a noose and hang itself because the law said so, too.

Seekster:
I ask you, do you think we should even have a border?

Yeah, nobody said nothing about removing it. We said, make it easier for people to get in, then allow the people that got stopped for the old, bad, law, to get amnesty, so they're not punished for breaking the old bad law, and so they can start abiding by the newer one.

Seekster:
If you do then you have to accept that having a border means controlling who crosses it at least to a reasonable degree and that means enforcing the relevant laws which means paying people to do that.

Yeah, but we're not currently doing it to 'a reasonable degree'. That's my whole point. This is a method to make it a reasonable degree without bankrupting ourselves to do it.

Seekster:
I agree with Socrates, even if you disagree with the law you must follow it or accept the consequences for breaking it (and the man practiced what he preached).

Yes, then Athens lost a giant war over it. Wow! Rape and pillage was SO much better for them wasn't it! Good thing the law wasn't harmed!

Seekster:
What you are saying here is essentially "society is to blame so lets just let people who break the law off". Are you prepared to extend that line of argument beyond just immigration or will you be inconsistent and only apply it to laws you don't like?

Nope, only to instances where we're wrong and/or the law is screwing us as a society over for no real benefit. See, the key phrase there was "(when) Society is to blame" and the unspoken key phrase is also "when the law is incredibly stupid and hurts us as a people for no reason".

Seekster:
Both parties are always in the wrong no matter what law we are talking about.

What are you even talking about?

Seekster:
As I said above unless you are prepared to simply ignore the law entirely in all cases then your argument is inconsistent.

1) Arguing for or against consistency implies that I give a shit about consistency. Luckily for you I usually do. But the law, again, to me is a tool that society uses to further its aims.

2) I think the whole 'when we're wrong, or the law hurts us as a people, then change something' is pretty consistent. That's a pretty strong caveat there if I saw one.

Seekster:
As for money, it irrelevant to the issue in my opinion.

Then why bring up the taxes and fines and crap? If money's irrelevant, your whole argument over 'they owe me a fine/taxes' is pointless.

I have no problem with some path to citizenship for those already here but that isnt up for discussion until the government has some reasonable control over who comes across the border. We arent even close to that yet. Even then we arent going to just go "right you are all citizens now". Those who came here illegally should have to pay some kind of fine as punishment or something. Whatever we ask them to do it should be easier to get legal citizenship legally than for an illegal to get legal citizenship.

You are not making a whole lot of sense and neither does Amnesty (perhaps thats why you arent making sense). We can still have schools and what not but securing the border should be the basics of the basics, job 1 of any government. Its an embarrassment that the government of the most powerful nation on Earth can't accomplish job #1.

Immigration law needs to be streamlined sure but at the end of the day there is still going to be immigration law and at the end of the day crossing the border illegally is STILL going to be illegal.

You brought up money as an issue, not me. Anytime I mentioned it was just in response to you.

The only mistake America made is letting the problem go this long and not doing anything to fix it. Arresting people for coming into the country illegally isnt a mistake, its what we SHOULD be doing.

Are you implying that Athens' defeat is as a result of the execution of Socrates?

Oh and Spot I know all about that, money isnt the issue to me though. Also you say "they pay taxes" likes its voluntary. If you make an income the federal government automatically takes payroll taxes out of your paycheck every pay period.

Seekster:
Oh and Spot I know all about that, money isnt the issue to me though. Also you say "they pay taxes" likes its voluntary. If you make an income the federal government automatically takes payroll taxes out of your paycheck every pay period.

If that's the case, then why did you even bother arguing it?

See Spot Run:

Seekster:
Oh and Spot I know all about that, money isnt the issue to me though. Also you say "they pay taxes" likes its voluntary. If you make an income the federal government automatically takes payroll taxes out of your paycheck every pay period.

If that's the case, then why did you even bother arguing it?

I didn't though I would like to point out that taxes that arent paid automatically would still likely go unpaid but as I said money isnt a key issue in the immigration debate.

Seekster:
I didn't though I would like to point out that taxes that arent paid automatically would still likely go unpaid but as I said money isnt a key issue in the immigration debate.

Except, as I noted above, they largely don't go unpaid.

The IRS is barred from sharing information on people's tax history with the INS, so illegals who pay their taxes are sheltered from risk of discovery.

However, if they got busted for tax evasion, the legal actions WOULD get the INS involved. Illegals are at much greater risk of detection through tax evasion, as a result.

See Spot Run:

Seekster:
I didn't though I would like to point out that taxes that arent paid automatically would still likely go unpaid but as I said money isnt a key issue in the immigration debate.

Except, as I noted above, they largely don't go unpaid.

The IRS is barred from sharing information on people's tax history with the INS, so illegals who pay their taxes are sheltered from risk of discovery.

However, if they got busted for tax evasion, the legal actions WOULD get the INS involved. Illegals are at much greater risk of detection through tax evasion, as a result.

State and local taxes (then again in Texas we dont have a state income tax so that doesnt really apply here).

Seekster:
State and local taxes (then again in Texas we dont have a state income tax so that doesnt really apply here).

See Spot Run:
the CBO report[s] that 50-75% of all undocumented workers pay federal, state and local taxes.

So, at worst a plurality of undocumented workers pay state and local taxes too.

Vegosiux:

... don't paint conservatives and libertarians as some protectors of freedom. The former care mostly about maintaining the status quo, the latter mostly care about their own liberties at the expense of everyone else's.

I thought the military, y'know, the people that put their lives on the line to protect the USA and its freedom very Conservative.
http://www.antiwar.com/lobe/?articleid=1449

I am not writing that leftists don't care about freedom, but, other than military spending, I don't think they are concerned with the size and scope of government to the extent that Conservatives and Libertarian are... they actually want more of it (more for arts, education, healthcare, social services).

Gashad:

Gorfias:

1) The people are pro death penalty for murderers. It is virtually abolished.

Hardly true-some states still actively kill people...

There were over 16,000 homicides in 2009 in the USA. There have been under 1200 executions between 1976 and 2009.

http://deathpenaltyinfo.org/executions-united-states-2009
That is virtual abolition.

Magichead:

5) We want to stay out of foriegn entanglements. The President bombs Libya without seeking Congressional approval. There are no repurcussions.

... where was "the people"'s aversion to "foreign entanglements" over the last decade?

Would you agree the people saw intervention in Iraq and Afghanistan as important, but STAYING there and engaging in Nation Building, even by Bush, was unpopular and has cost Republicans? I think Gore took a hit over Kosovo that may have cost him his election in 2000.

Agema:

aPod:
Is the point of liberty to protect unpopular opinions? If we are all equal than no matter what a majorities opinion on gay marriage they couldn't be denied their rights.

Not really, I'd say. But protecting unpopular views to a certain degree is liberal. I would argue that the majority gets some say over what goes and what doesn't for reasons of pragmatism.

I do agree that Democracy must mean more than two wolves and one sheep deciding what is for lunch and the US Constitution, imperfect as it is, attempts to curb the potential for that abuse.

Stagnant:

Gorfias:

[quote]Suppose that is even true (USA citizens too stupid and evil for self government). You appear to be writing that we need elite rule and you oppose responsive government. Correct?

No... I'm saying that we need an arm in place to ensure that the majority does not infringe upon the liberties of the minority. In other words, the ... constitution.

The Consitution, as aPod notes, isn't just about denying a majority their say. It is meant to be a limited curb on majority will, but it is not meant to ultimately mean minority government over a majority. The hot button issues of which I wrote, I do not believe the majority are being un constitutional in their wants.

See Spot Run:

Damien Granz:
snip

Seekster:
snip

To interject again briefly on the topic of "paying back taxes" and "lost revenue" pertaining to illegal immigrants.

A real quick internet search indicates that roughly 6 million illegal immigrants file income tax returns in the US each year, with the CBO reporting that 50-75% of all undocumented workers pay federal, state and local taxes. Plus they pay sales tax on virtually every dollar they spend, and for most illegals, nearly every dollar earned is immediately spent.

Social security reports that payments from illegals account for 7 billion dollars of revenue yearly.

And they pay all this money while ineligible for any of the benefits associated therewith.
If you're operating on the premise that illegals are costing the country money because they don't pay taxes, then your argument is flawed in the extreme.

Results of studies vary, but it's likely that the actual direct financial impact of undocumented workers in the US is minor, as studies tend to show that they're more likely to pay taxes than use government services, and the proportion of those services that they make use of is minimal when compared to the use of those same services by legal residents.

There are all kinds of reasons that you might want to get a handle on illegal immigration.

Lost tax dollars isn't a very good one.

Yeah, I agree with that assessment. The idea that they should 'pay back taxes' is flawed because it costs us money. They're not asking the American government to pay them money, anyways. And even if they did, figuring out how much isn't really possible. That's part of also why I think amnesty is a good idea to just people have a clean slate to build off a legal future.

See Spot Run:

So, at worst a plurality of undocumented workers pay state and local taxes too.

Not doubting you... just wondering how the heck they do that without a Social Security Number!

EDIT: Here's my problem. I think you would find the vast majority of voters want immigration, legal and other, curbed, to which political elites respond, "oh, you want amnesty" and they yell, "no, curb immigration" and they reply, "yeah, we're working on that amnesty you want as hard as we can!" There is a lack of responsiveness on this issue. Is that lack of responsiveness more difficult to address the larger and more powerful our government is, even if that power comes from programs that really do help people (example health care)

Gorfias:

See Spot Run:

So, at worst a plurality of undocumented workers pay state and local taxes too.

Not doubting you... just wondering how the heck they do that without a Social Security Number!

You'd have to ask the CBO. I'm just repeating their findings. I know that for anything the IRS is involved in, taxes are usually paid via a Tax Information Number issued by the IRS themselves. State and local levels I don't know enough about, and I'm sure it varies from locality to locality.

Gorfias:
EDIT: Here's my problem. I think you would find the vast majority of voters want immigration, legal and other, curbed, to which political elites respond, "oh, you want amnesty" and they yell, "no, curb immigration" and they reply, "yeah, we're working on that amnesty you want as hard as we can!" There is a lack of responsiveness on this issue. Is that lack of responsiveness more difficult to address the larger and more powerful our government is, even if that power comes from programs that really do help people (example health care)

This seems like a pretty complete mischaracterization of the problem. Mostly because the issue of immigration reform is an incredibly complex one, and the above description is absurdly simplistic. (plus, I've never seen the described dynamic occur, at all - more accurately it would be "curb illegal immigration!" - "Uhh, Well, we'll investigate immigration reform...? Seriously guys, we actually don't know how to solve this without fucking literally everyone")

On the one hand, there are a whole variety of reasons why illegal immigration is a problem, and they range from disparities in economic health, relative corruption and efficacy of foreign government, quality of life, earning potential, to the extreme difficulty of immigrating legally.

On the other hand, there are a whole range of reasons why simply "curbing immigration" is a ridiculous unattainable. And doing so would cause more damage to the economic health of the US than it could ever hope to solve.

In order to solve the immigration issue, The US is going to need to fundamentally dismantle and rebuild its entire immigration policy. It may also need to make some significant adjustments to its foreign policy, especially with regards to Mexico, if it ever hopes to bring illegal immigration from Mexico under control.

In the short term, amnesty for resident aliens, and DRASTICALLY reduced barriers to legal entry would at least allow the US to account for and collect revenue from immigrating workers.

In the long term, a foreign policy dedicated to the aggressive economic development of Mexico would go a long way towards reducing the desire to immigrate to the US.

Damien Granz:

See Spot Run:

Damien Granz:
snip

Seekster:
snip

To interject again briefly on the topic of "paying back taxes" and "lost revenue" pertaining to illegal immigrants.

A real quick internet search indicates that roughly 6 million illegal immigrants file income tax returns in the US each year, with the CBO reporting that 50-75% of all undocumented workers pay federal, state and local taxes. Plus they pay sales tax on virtually every dollar they spend, and for most illegals, nearly every dollar earned is immediately spent.

Social security reports that payments from illegals account for 7 billion dollars of revenue yearly.

And they pay all this money while ineligible for any of the benefits associated therewith.
If you're operating on the premise that illegals are costing the country money because they don't pay taxes, then your argument is flawed in the extreme.

Results of studies vary, but it's likely that the actual direct financial impact of undocumented workers in the US is minor, as studies tend to show that they're more likely to pay taxes than use government services, and the proportion of those services that they make use of is minimal when compared to the use of those same services by legal residents.

There are all kinds of reasons that you might want to get a handle on illegal immigration.

Lost tax dollars isn't a very good one.

Yeah, I agree with that assessment. The idea that they should 'pay back taxes' is flawed because it costs us money. They're not asking the American government to pay them money, anyways. And even if they did, figuring out how much isn't really possible. That's part of also why I think amnesty is a good idea to just people have a clean slate to build off a legal future.

the problem with amnesty is it doesn't give all the immigrants who came here illegally instant citizenship, nor a clean slate either. the person has to prove that they have lived in the states for a certain amount of years and have to meet requirements in order to gain said amnesty. It's not easy and it's a long process that costs a lot of money. Plus lot's of people would still be deported who probably don't deserve to be.

Vegosiux:
Sorry Gorf, but don't paint conservatives and libertarians as some protectors of freedom. The former care mostly about maintaining the status quo, the latter mostly care about their own liberties at the expense of everyone else's.

The rebuttal was brilliant. When you say that Libertarians want their freedom at the expense of everyone else's, you show yourself as an ignorant jackass. Libertarians, such as myself, believe that the liberty of EVERYONE is sacred. Don't hurt me, I won't hurt you. Mind your own damn business, and I'll do the same. You can do whatever you want AS LONG AS IT DOESN'T AFFECT OTHERS.

woodwalker:

The rebuttal was brilliant. When you say that Libertarians want their freedom at the expense of everyone else's, you show yourself as an ignorant jackass.

Only that I didn't say that. I just said that "libertarianism" seems like a sorry excuse for being a self-absorbed douche to me.

Libertarians, such as myself, believe that the liberty of EVERYONE is sacred. Don't hurt me, I won't hurt you. Mind your own damn business, and I'll do the same.

Well sorry, but that's just it. Your liberties are sacred. My liberties are restricted to what you don't think I shouldn't be doing. (Yay for confusing multiple negatives!)

You can do whatever you want AS LONG AS IT DOESN'T AFFECT OTHERS.

Then I better stop breathing.

I like how #1 on the list was about the death penalty.

Taking life being ultimate denial of freedom and the right of a state to rob its citizenry of life being arguably the strongest form of tyranny that can be expressed by a government upon an individual. An amusing assertion when discussing liberty given the subject.

See Spot Run:

Gorfias:
... I think you would find the vast majority of voters want immigration, legal and other, curbed, to which political elites respond, "oh, you want amnesty"...Is that lack of responsiveness more difficult to address the larger and more powerful our government...

... the issue of immigration reform is an incredibly complex one, and the above description is absurdly simplistic...

Is it fair to write that your answer to my question of, "is unresponsive government due to the size and power of government", at least on this issue, a "no"? That in this case, it has less to do with the government having the power to ignore their constituants, and more to do with them not really knowing what to do about a complex situation?

Bohemian Waltz:
I like how #1 on the list was about the death penalty.

Taking life being ultimate denial of freedom and the right of a state to rob its citizenry of life being arguably the strongest form of tyranny that can be expressed by a government upon an individual. An amusing assertion when discussing liberty given the subject.

EDIT: It was number one because I think the poll numbers are the most consistent over a long period of time and the numbers are stark: a substantial majority want a thing they are not Constitutionally barred from having, yet it is not happening. Other issues, such as Foreign entanglement issues are much less stark. I wrote earlier, I think Kosovo helped cost Al Gore the Presidency. I do think it matters to people.

So, you want to privatize a death penalty system? Of course not.

Crime and social control, up to and including the death penalty, is a primary responsibility of government.

Gorfias:

Crime and social control, up to and including the death penalty, is a primary responsibility of government.

One's freedom to live is probably the single most fundamental freedom. Killing someone is the ultimate denial of freedom.

Whatever case you make to wish about whether a criminal deserves death, or whether his right to life may be suspended by society should he commit a crime of sufficient severity does not matter. The only useful liberty defence for execution of criminals is that they pose an immediate threat to other people's lives (and thus liberty). But that doesn't wash when confinement is an option.

Agema:

Gorfias:

Crime and social control, up to and including the death penalty, is a primary responsibility of government.

One's freedom to live is probably the single most fundamental freedom. Killing someone is the ultimate denial of freedom.

Whatever case you make to wish about whether a criminal deserves death, or whether his right to life may be suspended by society should he commit a crime of sufficient severity does not matter. The only useful liberty defence for execution of criminals is that they pose an immediate threat to other people's lives (and thus liberty). But that doesn't wash when confinement is an option.

What I'm writing is that crime and social control are government responsibilties. It is not OK to fine someone (take money from them) if they do not deserve to have money taken from them. If they do deserve to get a parking ticket, it is not an attack on their liberty to impose one.

More than one poster in this thread has suggested that there is a logical disconnect between desiring liberty and wanting to see the government engaged in a crime and social control measure they think appropriate, in this case, a death penalty. This is patently absurd.

When the military now thanks to the NDAA (national defense authorization act) can invade and arrest any US citizen suspected of "terrorist activities" whatever the fuck that means these days, put you in a holding cell, torture or execute you without trial well then you don't really have any rights anymore. More like temporary privileges and if history have teach us anything about the chances of a government to abuse its power well then it's not really a question of IF but rather WHEN it will happen. There are of course ways around it, if you are worried you can always flee the country or just get yourself a gun and an alarm system to warn you when scary men in black masks stands outside your door, just remember to save the last bullet for yourself ;). One can only wonder what will go through your mind just before the bullet enter it, probably something like "-God damn it! I never should have downloaded that episode of Gilligan's island" xD.

 Pages PREV 1 2 3 4 NEXT

Reply to Thread

This thread is locked