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With another upcoming Presidential election on the horizon, we are hearing more and more about amnesty for illegal aliens. The word “amnesty” includes in its definition the acknowledgement that a law has been broken and the implication that there are no plans on changing that particular law. I am generally against the idea of amnesty for anything. I prefer the rule of law… or changing a law perhaps for future situations. But more and more, I do see one way how amnesty may in fact help with our illegal immigration problem.

Imagine John Q. Illegal Immigrant. He is in the U.S. illegally (or, okay… not “illegally”, but “contrary to the immigration laws of the United States.) He is doing a job that people proclaim that “no Americans will do”. I say, Give him amnesty. Welcome him into the United States as a citizen with all of the rights that we enjoy here. Freedom! How happy John Q. is now that he no longer has to live in fear of discovery or deportation.

As part of the welcoming ceremony, we can embrace him into the customs of this great nation. First John, start giving half of your salary to the Government in federal income taxes, state income taxes, Social Security, sales tax, property tax, fees, surcharges, tariffs and what not. Also, your employer now gets to patriotically pay Social Security for you too! But your employer also gets to pay workers compensation insurance, your minimum wage salary enacted by noble people — and depending on your state — he must also provide health insurance, overtime, maternity leave, sick leave, shorter work days, child care, OSHA training and safety equipment, Material Data Safety Sheets for any hazordous materials nearby — like photocopier toner, a 401K retirement plan, sexual discrimination prevention counseling, air conditioning during mandatory break periods, and all of the relevant documentation that is required by various federal state and local authorities. You are an American now!

John may now feel that the deal he had before he was an American seems quite better than his new deal. But never mind John. Imagine the glee of John’s employer. Now we know why the employer would rather hire John off the books. He might as well just hire an American if he has to go through all of this. And regarding John and the many others in his position, the new problem may in fact be dealing with the mass exodus of people disheartened by their newly tarnished view of the American Dream.

The reason why people from other countries come to this country must be the fact that they can do better here somehow. We welcome people from anywhere who wish to come here and abide by the same rules that we have to abide by. Rather than try to turn the issue into a “race” thing, at least explore the notion that many Americans are resistant to people who are beating the system and avoiding the responsibilities that we Americans have. Come here legally. There is already a process in place for that.

Elections Should NOT Matter That Much

Earlier this week, during a speech at Tuft’s University, recently-demoted-to-House-Minority-Leader Nancy Pelosi said that “elections shouldn’t matter as much as they do”.

She is right – but not exactly the way she meant it. She was, I guess, trying to make a point about the common values that both major political parties share. Presumably, both parties want what is best for the country and, in her mind apparently, everybody should agree on what she thinks is the right thing to do for our country. Therefore, through her logic, it shouldn’t matter who gets elected because they should all do what she thinks is the right thing to do.

Firstly, I always find it interesting when politicians in the majority party of the moment refuse to even meet with the minority party to discuss anything. “We won, you lost – get over it!” But then when that majority/minority role becomes reversed in the next election, these same people proclaim how important it is for both sides to “work together”. “Hey ol’ buddy – why not listen to some of my great ideas?”

The larger issue though is that – historically and factually – federal elections should not matter that much at all. If one were to look at the Constitution and see exactly what the Federal government is permitted to do, you will find that there is not much that should effect the day to day lives of the American citizen and the allocation of their “stuff”. There is nothing in there about creating jobs, providing a “stimulus”, educating our children, housing of poor people, paying people not to work, making sure that everybody can buy a house, providing health care or any number of illegal Big Government rules and regulations.

Looking through a listing of Big Federal commissions, bureaus, offices, administrations, departments, agencies, committees and whatever other name one can concoct, is a journey into the world of made-up entities whose existence is at best, only tenuously tied to what is allowed in the Constitution. The argument that some of these agencies and the services they provide are a “good idea” or “important” is immaterial in regards to their being legally allowed by the Constitution.

Elections today have become a contest to pick the one who will get you the most stuff. Even campaign speeches have devolved to the point where the candidate does not even try to hide this or bury this in rhetoric.

“If you vote for me, you will get stuff – if you vote for my opponent, you will lose stuff.”
“If my opponent gets into office, old people will die.”
“Vote for me and I’ll get someone else to pay for your health care – or your house – or your cell phone – or your internet access – or your….”

What used to be implied is now said directly. “If Big Government does not provide a particular service, there is no way that it can be done. People will suffer or die because only Big Government is smart enough to solve any perceived problem in society.”

So we know that elections today have become merely choosing who is going to get you the biggest tax break by forcing someone else – a “greedy” person; or at least some faceless “they” – to pay more. Ask almost anyone about who they will vote for in the next election – and why. Let’s see if the discussion turns to which candidate is going to promise the most “stuff”. “What is this candidate going to do for ME?”

My question is how did it come to pass that elections to federal office have devolved into a discussion of how much of my stuff I get to keep and how much of my stuff someone else gets to take? How did we allow Big Government to attain that sort of power? Was this not exactly what the United States Constitution was written to prevent?

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