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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

Ross Rambles:Keep your huddled masses

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

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We sometimes get accused of liberal bias in our commentary, partly because of our occasional use of Donald Kaul's column, but primarily because some people can't think of the term "media" without adding the adjective "liberal."

This stereotype persists despite the existence of the conservative FOX News, the conservative domination of talk-show radio, the existence of a variety of news magazines that cater to every possible position on the political spectrum, and the fact that publishers and editors from small town newspapers tend to be more conservative than their metropolitan counterparts.

Still, sanctuaries for liberal punditry do exist, such as minutemanmedia.org, the website from which we download the Kaul columns.

This website is not associated with the minuteman organization that is dedicated to reversing the flow of illegal immigrants into the country. That organization is regarded as an ultraconservative group and is accused of pandering to racial and class prejudices.

Ironically, the ultraconservative minuteman organization shares common ground with at least some contributors to the ultraliberal minutemanmedia website.

We don't use anything else from the minutemanmedia website other than the Kaul column and an occasional political cartoon. One such cartoon appeared in the Wednesday edition of the Chronicle Times depicting "Hurricane NAFTA" unleashing a flood of U.S. subsidized corn drowning Mexican farmers, triggering a reverse flood of millions of Mexican farmers into the U.S., drowning the U.S. labor market in expendable undocumented workers. The cartoon depicts a wealthy businessman with a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. The pot contains billions in labor cost savings.

Some time back, a cartoon that appeared to be by the same cartoonist had a similar theme without the NAFTA connection, simply depicting cheap immigrant labor displacing struggling American workers.

I have seen a couple of the headers for columns written by columnists who contribute to minutemanmedia that suggest a similar view.

The depiction of big business profiting from the misery of poor people is a standard liberal theme but I'm surprised that the leftist media, or at least some portion of it, feels a threat from illegal immigration.

What happened to the starry-eyed one worlders eager to welcome the poor and huddled masses? Such idealists are a dwindling minority and their position is now attacked from all sides. A majority of Americans don't want any more poor and huddled masses.

Do we owe unfettered access to immigrants because immigrants founded this country? No, we don't. Times change and needs change. The immigrants who founded this country would have little value in modern America. People without skills beyond being able to load a musket or handle a team of oxen pulling a plow would not be useful to our economy.

Legal immigrants who are professionals or skilled technicians make valuable contributions to our country but unskilled workers serve only to drag down the earnings of laborers. Cheap labor may result in a quarter a pound in savings for processed meat and similar savings for a few other goods and services but cheap labor has a high cost in terms of lowered tax base and increased demand for social services.

We should not offer amnesty to illegal immigrants and we should not increase the number of unskilled laborers allowed to be here legally.