Jim DeMint Gets Milton Friedman’s Immigration Views Wrong

Michael Hamilton is a libertarian writer living in Washington, D.C. His main interests are economics, immigration, and land-use policy.

Heritage Foundation President Jim DeMint took to the pages of the Washington Post this morning to defend his institution’s latest report on immigration, in which the ludicrous claim that “amnesty” would cost taxpayers $6.3 trillion is made.

I’ll leave analysis of the study itself to others (and boy, are they really piling on), but I take exception to the very first sentence of DeMint’s op-ed:  ”The economist Milton Friedman warned that the United States cannot have open borders and an extensive welfare state.”

Every now and again a particular clip from a larger Milton Friedman speech is brought up, and this debate is rehashed in libertarian circles. In it, Friedman says, “it is one thing to have free immigration to jobs. It is another thing to have free immigration to welfare. And you cannot have both.” This is what DeMint is referencing, and he seems to think it supports either his general point of view or his immigration policy prescriptions. I believe that either is unlikely.

Pandering to Idiots: How Obama Flip-Flops

Jorge Gonzalez is a motion designer and political activist living and working in Midtown Atlanta. In his free time, he enjoys filming, photography, and reading.

I recently had a discussion with a close friend of mine who is a very “progressive” guy. He’s the type that buys into all the horror stories about Republicans and libertarians. You know, we don’t care about the poor or women’s rights or worker’s rights and we’re cruel, intolerant etc etc. He started off the conversation by claiming “Romney panders to stupid people. Obama does not…Obama doesn’t bend his beliefs to fit an uneducated and sensationalistic base.” If you didn’t fall out of your chair just now at the sheer stupidity and myopia of a statement like that, then I ask you to read on, dear Reader, because what follows may be of interest to you.

Can the GOP Come Back?

Think about it! Four years ago, the Republican Party held the White House and both houses of Congress. Now, the Democrats have won the Presidency by a sizable margin, gained additional seats in the majority Democratic House, and could possibly hold a sixty-vote majority in the Senate—large enough to end any Republican initiated filibuster.

First of all, consider the magnitude of the Republican loss. What support shifted from four years ago?

Democrats: If It Wasn’t for Double Standards…

Double Standards

Several recent news stories brought to mind the old joke about liberal Democrats, that if it weren’t for double standards they would have no standards at all. Sometimes the hypocrisy is enough to stupefy any reasonable person. For your reading pleasure, I offer the following examples…

In his November 20 speech to the nation regarding his “executive amnesty” actions, Obama said, “Even as we are a nation of immigrants, we’re also a nation of laws. Undocumented workers broke our immigration laws, and I believe that they must be held accountable  – especially those who may be dangerous.” The hypocrisy of this statement coming from that man is glaring. Obama declares we are a nation of laws as a precursor to explaining how he is about to continue the violations of his oath of office by expanding the scope of his non-enforcement criteria, and beyond that, actually rewarding the lawbreakers.

America is indeed a nation of immigrants, yet Obama is not declaring amnesty for immigrants, he is declaring amnesty for millions of illegal aliens whose first actions in relation to America were violations of our immigration laws. He has for more than half a decade failed to faithfully enforce those laws, declaring entire categories of illegals exempt from prosecution and deportation under the law. He now seeks to reward them with legalization and work permits.

Republican Congressman: Obama should grant amnesty to Edward Snowden

Tom McClintock

Congressman Tom McClintock (R-CA) is urging President Barack Obama to grant amnesty to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Shortly after a townhall meeting in his suburban Sacramento district, McClintock told a local news affiliate that the government should grant Snowden amnesty so that he would be free to answer questions about the NSA spying programs without the threat of prosecution.

“We have some very good laws against sharing secrets and he broke those laws,” McClntock told KCRA, a Sacramento-based news station. “On the other hand, he broke them for a very good reason because those laws were being used in direct contravention of our Fourth Amendment rights as Americans.”

McClintock expounded upon those comments yesterday during an interview with Los Angeles-based radio station KABC.

“What Edward Snowden did was to provide the American people and Congress with evidence that we had been specifically denied when [Director of National Intelligence] James Clapper lied under oath to the Congress and denied the existence of this mass gathering of data of Americans,” McClintock told host KABC.

“That is a direct and flagrant violation of the Fourth Amendment. Edward Snowden called them on it. Yes, there are some very good laws against leaking classified information; they out to be enforced,” explained McClintock. “On the other hand, if they are enforced in cases of gross violation of our constitutional rights, that becomes a death sentence for the Constitution.

“If they Constitution is being systematically subverted by our own government and we’re not even allowed to be told about it, that is a step too far,” he added.

Liberty Links: Morning Reads for Tuesday, February 15th

Below is a collection of several links that we didn’t get around to writing about, but still wanted to post for readers to examine. The stories typically range from news about prominent figures in the liberty movement, national politics, the nanny state, foreign policy and free markets.

Big brother is watching you, Pennsylvania (or are they?)

The Pennsylvania Department of Revenue is running an ad promoting tax amnesty in a big brother way.

National ID will be a part of immigration reform

It looks like another hot button issue will be coming to the forefront of American politics this year as the Senate is planning on tackling immigration. You may recall that President George W. Bush tried to tackle this issue with the Democratic-controlled Congress in 2007. The proposal, sponsored by Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) and Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-MA), was meet with fierce opposition by conservatives and Republicans and ultimately defeated.

Reform that makes it easier for immigrants to come to seek the American Dream, should be welcome. Unfortunately, much of the opposition (though not all) was rooted in xenophobia, nativism and, in some cases, racism. Because of this there was no opportunity to have a substantive debate on the points of the bill, such as provisions of McCain-Kennedy dealing with REAL ID, which was a defacto national ID card approved by Congress in 2005.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Sen. Chuck Schumer may be incorporating a biometric national ID card in his proposal:

Under the potentially controversial plan still taking shape in the Senate, all legal U.S. workers, including citizens and immigrants, would be issued an ID card with embedded information, such as fingerprints, to tie the card to the worker.

The ID card plan is one of several steps advocates of an immigration overhaul are taking to address concerns that have defeated similar bills in the past.

Lieberman, Secretary of State

Senator McCain has already made it clear that he will have a bi-partisan cabinet and Joe Lieberman is sure to fill in one of those positions.  But he won’t stop with just the one-


“I can tell you, with all due respect to previous administrations. It is not going to be a single, ‘well we have a Democrat now.’”

I have mixed feelings about this.  On the one hand, I think reaching across the aisle can be a good thing.  Dr. Paul has done it numerous times and it has fostered good will towards him from Democratic congressmen.  A President willing to do this could, theoretically, accomplish a great deal more than a divisive, partisan leader.

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