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Speaking of Outsourcing Government Jobs to Corporations–Look at Serco

October 31, 2011 in Immigration

SERCO – a UK example of a corporation that  derives more than 90% of its revenue from government contracts or franchises awarded by governments.

A FTSE 1000 international service company, Serco has grown largely through the outsourcing of public services, particularly from successive UK governments. Now worth an estimated $4 billion, Serco is involved in hospitals, traffic management, prisons, immigration detention, military logistics, military health support, prisoner transport and custodial security, education, health and justice, amongst other activities.

The Serco Group has operations throughout Europe, Asia, North America and Africa. More than 90 percent its revenue is derived from government contracts or franchises awarded by governments. According to a Serco spokesperson: “Serco’s experiences go beyond immigration detention centres and prisons, and it is this wider knowledge of public sector management that is utilised to maintain a high level of service to customers and clients.”

The company has numerous operations in Australia, having recently won contracts to manage Fiona Stanley Hospital and the Acacia Prison, as well as deals to provide court security and custodial services in Western Australia, provide logistical support to the Australian Defence Force in Afghanistan, and manage the Borallon Correctional Facility in Queensland. The extent of Serco’s involvement in Australia’s military is underscored by the fact that Serco maintains a presence in every military base in Australia.

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Australia has its own Immigration Nightmare on Christmas Island

Some 1,600 miles from the West Coast of Australia; Christmas Island sits alone, surrounded by the Indian Ocean. The cliff-bound territory, with some 1,400 residents on just over 50 square miles, hosts a detention center where thousands of immigrants who tried to enter Australia illegally are indefinitely detained. The policy of intercepting and holding without charge asylum seekers –including more than 1,000 children–has sparked political debate in Australia. But Serco, the UK company contracted to manage the center, has largely escaped scrutiny.

Read the complete detail in this report on Corp Watch written by Patrick O’Keeffe on Oct. 25, 2011.

Nightmare on Christmas Island:  Serco’s Australian Detention Center

Proclaim the Queen!

    The Politics of Obama’s Hispanic Crackdown is not likely to play out well for him in 2012.

    October 30, 2011 in 2012 Elections, Immigration

     

    In his seemingly never-ending quest to morph into a member of the Republican Party, President Obama has broken all prior records of any US President for deportation of undocumented immigrants. The Obama administration set a new record for deportations, removing nearly 400,000 undocumented immigrants in the last fiscal year. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement  removed 396,906 undocumented immigrants from the United States in the 2011 fiscal year, a slight increase from the previous year’s 392,826 removals.

    A series of high-profile sweeps known as Operation Cross Check have netted thousands of what the Obama administration refers to as criminal aliens [Really?  789,732 criminals in past two years?  Such numbers stretch the limits of anyone's credulity--not because of the number, but that these are all "criminals".] And felony prosecutions for immigration crimes increased by 42 percent during President Obama’s first two years in office–and how much has THAT approach cost taxpayers?

    It seems to me that instead of taking a punitive approach that the 99% would be better served if our leaders busied themselves in passing legislation that created jobs for the 99% instead of passing legislation that makes criminals of a large segment of our population and then makes the remaining portion of the 99%  pay for their incarceration.  We need to replace our Congress with people whose thoughts are directed at pr0-active initiatives that benefit all instead of punitive solutions that benefit no one–except of course the 1% wealthy Wall Street investors who profit from such legislation.

    The Obama administration’s approach is good business for the Wall Street owned prison services like Corrections Corporation of America and their wealthy investors, but not so for the 99% of the American people whose taxes are spent on incarcerating these people and processing them out of the country.  Already the USA with 5% of the world’s population has 25% of the world’s population of incarcerated prisoners–a  costly proposition for the American taxpayer and another indication of the extent to which the USA has grown into a police state.  And who is paying to maintain this police state?  It’s the 99% while the 1% get rich off these investments.

    Other Disturbing Trends Resulting from the Obama Administration’s Hispanic Policies

    The Christian Science Monitor points out that [these policies] “. . .have profound implications for Hispanics – most of whom are in the United States legitimately, but some of whom make up the lion’s share of the 11 million illegal immigrants in America. In fact, Hispanics are now the majority group being sent to federal prison, largely because of the criminal prosecution of repeat border jumpers.

    Other disturbing trends, partially tied to the mass arrests of Hispanic male bread winners, are also emerging. For the first time, more Hispanic than white children are living in poverty. The unemployment rate for Hispanics is hovering around 25 percent. College-bound rates for Hispanic teenagers are flagging, and their grade school test scores are, on the whole, poor when compared with those of blacks, whites, and Asians. . .” [Source]

    Implications of this Harsh Stance Against Hispanics for 2012

    The stupid and self-destructive policies of the Obama Administration regarding their treatment of Latinos, ignores a two important political realities:

    1) The 99% don’t want to spend money putting people in jail and furthermore few and fewer Americans look upon prison as anything but a last resort solution that should be reserved for the worst of the worst. Our prisons are filled with people who should not be there in the first place.  The 99% want  legislators to spend money to create jobs.  Most of us realize that putting people in prison is not a wise solution in most cases. Americans spend $60 billion a year to imprison 2.2 million people — exceeding any other nation — but receive a dismal return on the investment, according to a report to be released by a commission urging greater public scrutiny of what goes on behind bars. A report, “Confronting Confinement,” by the National Prison Commission, says legislators have passed get-tough laws that have packed the nation’s jails and prisons to overflowing with convicts, most of them poor and uneducated. However, politicians have done little to help inmates emerge as better citizens upon release.  The consequences of that failure include financial strain on states, public health threats from parolees with communicable diseases, and a cycle of crime and victimization driven by a recidivism rate of more than 60%, the report says. The report can be found at http://www.prisoncommission.org

    2) The Latinos form a huge voter bloc–a statistical fact that seems to be ignored by all Presidential candidates except for Rick Perry. More than 6.6 million Latinos voted in the 2010 election—a record for a midterm—according to an analysis of new Census Bureau data by the Pew Hispanic Center.  The number of Latino eligible voters—adults who are U.S. citizens—also increased, from 13.2 million in 2000 to 21.3 million in 2010.

    Obama is dissing 21.3 million voters and so are all the other candidates except for Rick Perry.  Texas, under Rick Perry’s leadership has its own version of the Dream Act–a claim that no other state in the union  can make.  Perry has publicly criticized the notion of a border fence while Obama didn’t even bother to respond to a letter that the people of Brownsville sent to him in May of 2009 asking him to intervene on building “the Wall” that separates their community from Matamoros.  And Perry has actually had the courage to call other Republican candidates “hard-hearted” in their stance toward Latino immigrants.

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    ILWQ COMMENTS

    The Obama administration’s punitive “law and order” solutions to immigration problems, which make George Bush look like an amateur drug-story cowboy by comparison, are particularly hypocritical when viewed in the light of the recent portion of NAFTA that just came into effect.

    Trucks from Mexico can now cross the borders into the USA

    Inspectors from the Texas Department of Public Safety have found a million violations in trucks coming from Mexico into El Paso, Texas between 2007 and 2011, according to a report by the El Paso Times. The report came just weeks before Mexican trucks will be allowed to begin shipping long-haul freight into U.S. territory.

    The first Mexican truck rolled into the U.S. last weekend (Oct 22, 2011) hauling a steel oil well drilling structure, heading for the Atlas Copco facility in Garland, Texas. The driver of the truck “waved from the cab, flashed a thumbs-up and thundered toward the bridge” as he crossed into the U.S. according to transportationnation.org.

    Allowing Mexican trucks to move into the U.S. may help drug violence to spill over from Mexico into the United States. The lawlessness of the drug cartels in Mexico have moved that country to the edges of being a failed state. Over 10,000 commercial vehicles were hijacked in Mexico in 2010, and drug cartels have become adept at cloning legitimate commercial vehicles to move drugs across the border. By allowing more trucks into the U.S. and allowing them to move more freely, it will only increase the  drug cartels to use them as a method for gaining greater access to the U.S. market for illegal drugs.

    NAFTA is just another one-way street to serfdom for the US workers

    Did you ever think about this way?  USA corporations are “people” only when that definition suits their purpose.  For example, USA corporation “people” are allowed to establish Maquiladoras (slave labor sweatshops usually located in border cities where assembly work is done for USA corporations).  USA corporation “people” are allowed to drive their trucks into the USA.  However, whereas the laws make it easy for  USA corporation “people” to “work” across the border, the same is not  to be said for individual Mexican citizens.  If they try to do this, they get put in jail.  In other words, the flow back and forth across the border is easy if you are rich and next to impossible if you are not.

    Putting people in jail has never in the history of the world been a successful solution to a social problem as it translates into oppression of victims–often of legislation passed by the rich.

    Proclaim the Queen!

      DREAM ACT MOVING A STEP CLOSER

      September 16, 2010 in Immigration

      Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, an endorsed candidate of Immigrants’ List, announced that he’ll bring the DREAM Act up for a vote as part of a major defense spending bill. That’s brings the country one step closer to a path to citizenship for young undocumented residents.

      But as soon as the announcement made headlines, the anti-reform movement got moving. Lawmakers and extremist anti-immigration groups like NumbersUSA immediately started throwing out the word “amnesty”.

      Only the anti-reformers would call a bill that provides a path to citizenship for people who serve in the military amnesty.

      Only the anti-reformers would attack an element of immigration reform that has real bipartisan support.

      And only the anti-reformers would mock a measure that has the support of 70% of Americans!

      The anti-reform movement is not a mainstream movement. It’s a fringe movement. And we need your support to make sure that fringe movement does not win this year.

      Click here to help Immigrants’ List’s goal of sending pro-reform candidates to Washington.

      Even as little as $5 can make a difference. For those who have already given $5, thank you.

      And for everyone else, isn’t $5 a small price to pay for real immigration reform?

      Will you pledge $5 today to Immigrants’ List? Just $5 can help make immigration reform a reality.

      Let’s show the anti-reform movement we are ready for this fight.

      Proclaim the Queen!

        BREAKING NEWS FROM THE PEW HISPANIC CENTER! Illegal immigration from Mexico has dramatically decreased since 2000!

        September 1, 2010 in Immigration

        If you’ve been wondering, as I have been, why any one in their right mind from Mexico would want to migrate into the USA and join one of the millions of displaced persons in our nation, you are on the right track because according to a recent  report from the Pew Hispanic Center, they are not.  According to a news article that appeared today in the Washington Post,  the number of illegal immigrants entering the United States has plunged by almost two-thirds in the past decade, a dramatic shift after years of growth in the population, according to a new report by the Pew Hispanic Center.

        Between 2000 and 2005, an average of 850,000 people a year entered the United States without authorization, according to the report released Wednesday. As the economy plunged into recession between 2007 and 2009, that number fell to 300,000.

        The sharp drop-off has contributed to an 8 percent decrease in the estimated number of illegal immigrants living in the United States, from a peak of 12 million in 2007 to 11.1 million in 2009.

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        EMMA COMMENTS AND ANALYSIS OF THIS NEWS:
        This is astounding and important news! Consider the time line.  Until 1994 when NAFTA was passed, the illegal immigrant population in the USA had been stable at 2 million for 10 years.  After the passage of NAFTA, the number of illegal immigrants in our nation swelled to 12 million by the end of 2000.  The reason for dramatic increase in illegal immigration was due to a number of factors and among them was most definitely NAFTA, an unfair trade agreement that decimated the livelihood from 2 million Mexican corn farmers.  They could not compete with the heavily US government subsidized corn markets.  In addition to the corn farmers, many of the other cottage industries dependent on the corn farmers prosperity also failed.  These millions of people migrated as displaced persons to the USA. Another reason for the rise in this migration to the USA was because, if you will recall, the USA was a boom economy during the 1990’s with lots of new construction and a booming new housing market.  By 2000, the number of people who had migrated to the USA illegally from Mexico swelled to 12 million souls.

        But the winds of the new century blew in George Bush and his conservative ideology for the wealthy.  Also, in fairness, our economy by 2000 was already beginning to contract economically and workers in the USA were feeling the impact of NAFTA and other unfair trade agreements that resulted in  millions of jobs being shipped overseas and ironically,  to Mexico as well.

        Now, thanks to this new information from PEW, we know what many of us have been suspecting for many years–illegal immigration to the USA is NOT increasing.  It is in fact decreasing and has been now for ten years.

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        So now we know the truth–illegal immigration has been on the decline for the past 10 years–what are its implication and what are we going to do with it and how will this shape our solutions going forward? How are we going to receive this news?

        Well that all depends upon who we are and the core beliefs that we cling to.   Our core beliefs also will influence our our interpretations of the implications of this new irrefutable data.

        Of course the hard core nuts among among us are likely to deny the truth.  They will claim that the findings are bogus and do what they can to discredit this credible information from a reputable and reliable  source such as the PEW foundation.

        Then there are others who will say that it is because law enforcement policies have been enacted that made it more difficult for people to cross the border. And this is true, but only as part of many factors, not the sole reason.  Jeffrey Passel, a senior demographer at Pew, and one of the people who created this report had this to say:  “We know that it’s harder to sneak across the border than it was four or five years ago, and especially than it was 10 or 15 years ago,” he said. “Virtually everyone who sneaks across the border uses a coyote now, and the cost has gone up. The increase of the border patrol around cities and ports of entry has pushed the flows across the border into more remote places.”

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        IMPLICATIONS

        We do have the issue of approximately 11 million people who are in this country illegally. We do have the issue that although they have a positive impact on our county nationwide of a +2% annual addition to our over GNP, many areas in our border states have been negatively affected by this influx of people and we do need to pay attention to assisting these communities in healing their problems.   However unlike an unconstrained rising tide, our illegal immigration  problem has boundaries and we could even say is shrinking.   It is contained and that is very positive news.  Surely this will diminish the fear-mongering of  politicians like Governor Brewer of Arizona and others who use illegal immigration as a wedge issue to polarize Americans.  The news that swarming hoards of brown people south of the border are not taking over our nation, but are decreasing, takes much of the wind out of the sails designed to traverse the seas of  mass hysteria regarding people “flooding our nation” from Mexico.

        We must be aware of and remind America that the solution is not to put these people in jail–not any of them.  That should never be part of any solution. It would be taking a net positive factor (the economic plus factor of illegal immigrants) and turning it into a net negative factor for the American taxpayer by forcing us to pay privatized Wall Street prison corporations to keep these people locked up.

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        A WALL STREET PRISON SERVICES CORPORATION AND ITS CONNECTIONS TO GOVERNOR BREWER

        Rachel Maddow had a news breaking expose (September 1, 2010) of Governor Brewer and her connection to CCA,  a privatized prison services corporation and  the fourth-largest corrections system in the nation, behind only the federal government and three states.  CCA houses approximately 75,000 offenders and detainees in more than 60 facilities, 44 of which are company-owned, with a total bed capacity of more than 80,000. CCA has contributed big time to Governor Brewers campaign.  In fact, CCA and Governor Brewer use the same PR agency–High Ground.  [I guess they call name it "high ground" because if you are not on high ground when you listen to some of their BS you are likely to drown.]

        Privatization of institutions such as prisons, schools and health care insurance which should be held in public trust is the cornerstone of Republican and conservative thinking. If they had their way,  Wall Street would be in charge of all government.  Instead of being represented in a US court of law, the conservatives would have citizens settling their difference in arbitration courts managed by Wall Street corporations.  We must educate people and spread the word so that they are aware of CCA and its connections to Governor Brewer’s political campaign as well as to the passage of the draconian SB1070 legislation that she signed into law.

        A local news station in Arizona KPHO (CBS affiliation) has been running exposes of Brewer and her anti-immigration campaign along with her connections and funding that she has accepted from CCA.

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        Once again, the approach to solving our immigration issues with job creation is even more viable as a workable solution.

        And again, the seed money for a jobs creation program is already there if we can force our Congress to overhaul the current Farm subsidies program.  Out of our current annual budget of $19 billion in farm subsidies, only $310 million goes to small farmers who still live on the land.  We can reclaim $18.5 billion that is wasted on Wall Street agribusinesses and rich “gentlemen” farmers and apply that taxpayer dollar to job creation.  We can begin this program in our border states who are negatively affected by illegal immigration.

        Who knows?  After five years we might be able to cut the farm subsidies program from its current $19 billion to $500,000 and return the other $18.5 billion to the taxpayers.

        Proclaim the Queen!

          Let’s start talking about sensible immigration solutions

          August 21, 2010 in Class War, Immigration

          The following suggestions are not likely to be well-taken by most Republicans and Corporate Centrist Democrats who sleep with Wall Street.  Nor are they likely to be taken very kindly by Tom Vilsak, the Monsanto corporate shill that President Obama put in place as Secretary of Agriculture.

          However they are likely to be well received by the majority of ordinary Americans with a lick of sense who live in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California.

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          We need to do something about our broken immigration system. There are approximately 12 million people, most of whom are Mexican citizens, who are in our country illegally.  They are overwhelmingly not criminals except by virtue of their immigration status which is illegal. All studies conducted by credible institutions  indicate that on a national basis these people are not a tax burden on the USA. In fact most studies indicate that they add 2% to our economy every year.

          However there is more than just the national factor to consider and I believe this is where the conflict come to the forefront.  It is true that local communities and their related government services in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California bear a large burden because of the number of illegal immigrants concentrated in their states.  To say that the locals services and even local job markets in these areas are not overwhelmed because of the illegal immigrant population is, in my opinion, inaccurate.  These states need assistance.

          In addition, there is the issue of drug related crimes in all of the border towns.

          To pretend that Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California are in the same position regarding their immigration issues as are Kansas or South Carolina is totally ridiculous. I do not agree with the way that Arizona has approached the problem; however, perhaps some good will come out of it in that perhaps Americans in other states will see how massive–financially and strategically– the problem is that we face in our states compared to theirs.  By and large many of our local governments are overwhelmed.

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          THE SOLUTION:  FIRST FIND THE FUNDING TO FIX THE PROBLEM

          SOURCE:
          Today, the American taxpayers fork over $19 BILLION every year in farm subsidies.

          Of that $19 BILLION, only $350,000 Million  goes to small American farmers who still live on the land they farm.  The rest goes to corporate agribusiness crooks like Archer Daniel Midland who were convicted of price fixing in 1996 and to rich “farmers” like the relatives of Blanche Lincoln and Michell Bachmann.

          Over the past few years in Arkansas, two thousand family farms were lost while Blanche Lincoln helped her own family rake in $715,000 in subsidies paid for by taxpayers.  Blanche Lincoln heads up the Senate agricultural committee–very handy, for her relatives that is.  Michelle Bachmann’s relatives are reported to have received in excess of $200,000 from these funds.

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          CUT FARM SUBSIDIES TO ALL WALL STREET AGRIBUSINESS ENTIRELY

          LEAVE THE $350 million that we currently allocate to small farmers who still live on the land.  In fact increase that to $1 billion. We need to encourage small farmer who still live on the land and discourage large agribusiness farms which decrease the food security of our nation.

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          VOILA! We have $18 billion dollar a year freed up that we can apply to help the states of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California to deal with their immigration issues.

          One suggestion for the first year that I would recommend is that we use this money to build at least two large county hospitals in each of these states.  Health issues are huge.  There are those who might argue this, but let me remind you.  Any citizen in your community with TB (which is on the rise in the USA) is a threat to you.

          I’m sure there are many other helpful ways that we could use this money to create jobs as well.

          MY POINT IS THIS:  UNTIL WE STOP FEEDING WALL STREET, WE WILL NEVER BE ABLE TO FEED OURSELVES AND GIVE A HAND UP TO OTHERS ON MAIN STREET.

          AFTER ALL, IT IS OUR MONEY–YOURS AND MINE.  I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of supporting rich wall street investors.

          Proclaim the Queen!

            As a Nation we are obsessed with the notion of being invaded

            August 21, 2010 in Immigration

            It’s Time for America to Grow up and Start Acting like an Adult!

            Ironic that we as a nation have such a mass paranoia about invasions.  Even Hollywood helps to feed this irrational national fear.  But the truth is that WE are the invaders.  Others have more to fear from our aggression than the other way around.

            Look at the great lengths to which we have gone to develop and to protect ourselves from these imagined fears.  Often these actions have involved taking punitive actions against segments of our immigrant populations.

            During World War II in a fit of paranoia over Japanese immigrants, many of who had been born in the USA and all of whom were citizens, we shipped them out to the desert where we put them interment camps where they lived for FOUR YEARS under constant scrutiny with absolutely no privacy. They were spied upon and watched by “real” American soldiers, their mail was opened, etc.

            Then in the 1950’s we had the “invasion of the yellow hoardes” to worry about.  In fact we worried so hard about the invasion of the yellow hoardes that Americans all over the USA spent millions of dollars building and stocking bomb shelters against this somewhat faceless enemy. [Somehow we seemed to forget that it was the Americans, not the Asian who dropped a nuclear bomb on Japan.]

            Also during the 1950’s  our elected officials in Washington allowed a deranged alcoholic demagogue named McCarthy to carry out a paranoid witch hunt against “communists” that cost taxpayers millions of dollars and ruined countless lives with his false gossip.

            Then of course there was Vietnam–another outgrowth of our paranoia as a nation about communism.  That war cost billions of dollars and  at least 58,196  Americans whose names have been listed on the Vietnam wall[.  In fact, the war in Vietnam is still going on today forty years later as several Vietnamese citizen still die every year from unexploded munitions left by the US military that citizens accidentally dig up or step on.  AND FOR WHAT?  Vietnam turned communist any way.  And in case you haven’t noticed, we have yet to be threatened, much less  invaded by the communist Vietnamese.

            We are so paranoid that we buy into the lies of a Republican Administration about Weapons of Mass Destruction.  Now years after the invasion and Bush’s declaration of “mission accomplished”  most of these people admit that they knew from the beginning that there were no weapons of mass destruction.  Perhaps if we were a little less paranoid as a nation we would have asked them sensible questions in the beginning instead of joining their Chicken Little parade.  Too bad we didn’t.  Our economy would be in much better shape today and a lot more Americans would be around to enjoy it.

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            Today our national scapegoats are all Muslims and all illegal immigrants from Mexico. As far as the Muslims go:  This country was founded on religious freedom.  Enough said.

            We need to do something about our broken immigration system. There are approximately 12 million people, most of whom are Mexican citizens, who are in our country illegally.  They are overwhelmingly not criminals except by virtue of their immigration status which is illegal. All studies conducted by credible institutions  indicate that on a national basis these people are not a tax burden on the USA. In fact most studies indicate that they add 2% to our economy every year.

            However there is more than just the national factor to consider and I believe this is where the conflict come to the forefront.  It is true that local communities and their related government services in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California bear a large burden because of the number of illegal immigrants concentrated in their states.  To say that the locals services and even local job markets in these areas are not overwhelmed because of the illegal immigrant population is, in my opinion, inaccurate.  These states need assistance.

            In addition, there is the issue of drug related crimes in all of the border towns.

            To pretend that Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California are in the same position regarding their immigration issues as are Kansas or South Carolina is totally ridiculous.

            Proclaim the Queen!

              TIME TO END THE IMMIGRATION HYSTERIA PROMOTED BY REPUBICANS

              July 31, 2010 in Immigration

              An article reported in yesterday’s Time Magazine titled “The ‘Dangerous’ Border is Actually one of America’s Safest Place.

              LOWEST VIOLENT CRIME RATES IN USA BORDER CITIES

              According to the FBI, the four large U.S. cities (with populations of at least 500,000) with the lowest violent crime rates — San Diego, Phoenix and the Texas cities of El Paso and Austin — are all in border states.

              An even more telling example is El Paso. Its cross-border Mexican sister city, Ciudad Juárez, suffered almost 2,700 murders last year, most of them drug-related, making it possibly the world’s most violent town. But El Paso, a stone’s throw across the Rio Grande, had just one murder.

              ARIZONA’S CRIME RATE HAS DROPPED CONSIDERABLY THE PAST FEW YEARS

              Consider Arizona itself — whose illegal-immigrant population is believed to be second only to California’s. The state’s overall crime rate dropped 12% last year; between 2004 and 2008 it plunged 23%. In the metro area of its largest city, Phoenix, violent crime — encompassing murder, rape, assault and robbery — fell by a third during the past decade and by 17% last year. The border city of Nogales, an area rife with illegal immigration and drug trafficking, hasn’t logged a single murder in the past two years.

              ******************************************************************

              Arizona law-enforcement officials say they believe the Cochise County rancher, Robert Krentz, was killed by an illegal immigrant — perhaps a coyote, or migrant smuggler — or a drug trafficker. His last radio transmission home as he inspected his property indicated he was helping a struggling person he believed to be one of the migrants who regularly trespass private land while crossing into the U.S. But while such assaults are hardly unheard of along the border — and while it’s hardly irrational to worry about Mexico’s violence eventually spilling into the U.S. — they have hardly risen to a level that justified the draconian Arizona bill. (In fact, if an illegal immigrant did murder Krentz, it would be the first time in more than a decade that a migrant has killed an American along the border’s Tucson, Ariz.)

              Proclaim the Queen!

                Want to know why a McDonalds burger is often cheaper than a healthy salad? Look no further than government subsidies to Wall Street.

                May 4, 2010 in Immigration, Wall Street

                If more Americans understood the impact of taxpayer funded government Wall Street welfare (subsidies) on their lives and the lives of their children, they would be furious.

                A decade ago, an American woman’s waist, on average, was close to two inches smaller than. Eighteen year olds are 15 pounds heavier than they were in the 1970s.

                One reason is federal subsidies for food production. Take a look at these numbers:

                • Meat/Dairy — 73.8 percent
                • Grains — 13.2 percent
                • Sugar/Oil/Starch/Alcohol — 10.7 percent
                • Nuts/Legumes — 1.9 percent
                • Vegetables/Fruits — 0.4 percent

                That’s right – just 1.9 percent for nuts and legumes and 0.4 percent for fruits and vegetables. As a result, a salad often costs you more than a Big Mac.

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                Every year the American taxpayers fork over $19 billion in farm subsidies.  $18.6 billion of these farm subsidies go to large Wall Street agribusinesses and rich “gentlemen” farmers like Nelson Rockefeller.  Only $350 million of these subsidies are paid to the small American farmers who still live on the the land that they farm.

                Even worse, these heavily taxpayer subsidized food commodities enable large agribusinesses to go into foreign countries such as Mexico  and ruin those economies by undercutting the local farmers with their heavily taxpayer subsidized grains.

                Of course to do that, Wall Street needs some help from Congress and they get that in the form of unfair trade agreements like NAFTA.  The reason we have the problem of displaced persons from Mexico who are working in our nation is largely due to taxpayer funded corporate welfare combined with NAFTA which removed protective tariffs from the Mexican corn farmer who could not compete with the heavily subsidized corn commodities from US agribusinesses like Archer Daniel Midland and others.  Until NAFTA, the illegal Mexican population had been stable for years at under 2 million.

                Today, 16 years after the passage of NAFTA, we have an estimated 12 million displaced persons from Mexico in our nation.

                We need to stop subsidizing rich Wall Street corporations and use  all but $350,000 of that $19 billion to fix our immigration problems by righting the wrong we have committed–not by putting people in jail.

                Perhaps after five or six years, $18.5 billion of the farm subsidies can be returned to the American taxpayer in the form of a tax break.

                Proclaim the Queen!

                  The Democratic Immigration “Solution” Is No Solution

                  April 30, 2010 in Immigration

                  from http://emmaberry.org

                  Emma Berry, Independent Candidate for US Congress for Third Congressional District of Texas

                  ONCE AGAIN I AM REMINDED AS TO WHY I AM RUNNING AS AN INDEPENDENT AND NOT AS A DEMOCRAT.  UNLIKE THE MAJORITY OF ELECTED OFFICIALS IN CONGRESS, I DON’T HAVE A WALL STREET STOCK PORTFOLIO TO PROTECT.  I would be fighting with the administration daily, but much more effectively.  I would not merely be saying “NO” as are the Republicans.  I would saying why and I would be offering better solutions–something that NEITHER side wants to hear as they continue to play their good cop/bad cop routine as Main Street and the middle class slide into oblivion.

                  Again, the proposed Democratic solution is just another attempt to treat the symptom [the presence of displaced persons  from Mexico in the USA] and not the root causes of WHY they are here in the first place [NAFTA,  an unfair trade agreement that they pass in 1994 and the fact that if the people in the USA were not the market for the illegal drugs, we would not be have the border issues of crime]

                  FOLLOWING ARE MY COMMENTS:

                  The root cause of why we have 12 million displaced people from Mexico today is because of NAFTA–an unfair trade agreement that was passed by Bill Clinton in 1994 which drove 2 million Mexican corn farmers off their land and allowed heavily taxpayer subsidized Wall Street agribusinesses such as Archer Daniel Midland to ruin the huge part of the Mexican economy that is tied to the major food staple of that nation–corn.  The issues that we have with illegal drugs on our borders is a separate issue that has little to do with illegal immigration and all to do with the fact that the citizens of the USA are the market for these drugs.  Until our government takes away the market and that would begin with the legalization of marijuana, we will continue to have the drug problems on our border.

                  EMMA’S COMMENTS POINT BY POINT TO THE PROPOSED DEMOCRATIC SOLUTION FOR IMMIGRATION

                  1.  More Border Patrol officers – Well that will create more jobs, unfortunately these are police jobs and thus will continue to move our Nation in the direction of a police state.

                  2. More Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents, work site inspectors, document fraud investigators and drug-war agents. Again that will create more jobs, but it will expose all Americans to the same types of insidious and often unwarranted searches that innocent citizens are exposed to in police states.

                  3. The “installation of high-tech ground sensors throughout the southern border and for equipping all border patrol officers with the technological capability to respond to activation of the ground sensors in the area they are patrolling.” Great!  more government contracts with Wall Street crooks that will be paid for by the US taxpayers.  That should make everyone’s  stock portfolios fatter.  Oh, wait a minute!  Most of us who live on Main Street don’t have enough money to invest in the companies that are run by these crooks.
                  4. More prosecution of drug smuggling, human trafficking and unauthorized border crossing.  “Great!”  just more human beings for our Wall Street privatized penal system.  More profits for Wall Street.  We already have the largest most corrupt penal system in the world.  Sure why not make it even larger.  Round up more human beings for the taxpayers to support.

                  Our “the land of the free,” has more people in prison than any other country in the world. The US has the highest documented incarceration rate, and total documented prison population in the world. As of year-end 2007, a record 7.2 million people were behind bars, on probation or on parole. Of the total, 2.3 million were incarcerated. More than 1 in 100 Americans were incarcerated at the start of 2008. The People’s Republic of China ranks second with 1.5 million, while having four times the population of the United States, thus having only about 18 per cent of the US incarceration rate.

                  Russia, with a population of 168 million, has about 920,000 inmates. The US incarcerates people at a rate more than 15 times that of Japan, and its prison population is more than eight times that of Italy, France, the UK, Spain and Australia combined.  SOURCE
                  5. Increases in the number of sport utility vehicles, helicopters, power boats, river boats, portable computers to track illegal immigrants and drug smugglers while inside of a border patrol vehicle, night vision equipment, Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), Remote Video Surveillance Systems (RVSS), scope trucks, and Mobile Surveillance Systems (MSS). I can almost see the drool dripping from the mouths of Wall Street CEO’s on this one.  This would result in billions of dollars in government contracts–MORE WALL STREET WELFARE.
                  6. All prisoners will be checked for immigration status and deported if found to lack documentation.
                  We have an estimated 12 million undocumented workers in our nation today.  I thought that we had long ago given up on the economic viability or even feasibility of doing this.  In addition, what about separation of these people from their families.  What about their children?

                  7. DHS will “identify, investigate, and initiate removal proceedings” against folks who came here legally but didn’t leave.
                  Again this will be of a huge cost to the American taxpayers

                  8. The bill would create “a broad-based registration program that requires all illegal immigrants living in the U.S. to come forward to register, be screened, and, if eligible, complete other requirements to earn legal status, including paying taxes.”

                  This is the ONLY solution that may have some possible merit to all the suggestions of the Democratic solution.

                  **************************************************************

                  EMMA’S SOLUTION TO OUR PROBLEM OF DISPLACED PERSONS FROM MEXICO IN OUR COUNTRY AND A PARTIAL SOLUTION TO OUR DRUG PROBLEMS AT THE BORDER.

                  Unlike the Republicans OR Democrats  I have a real solution.  A much simpler solution and one that will not only not cost the American taxpayers a dime it will actually create revenue for our nation and will eventually give back most of $19 billion a year that we are currently paying in taxes to support crooks:

                  1. Renegotiate NAFTA and put back the protective corn tariffs for the Mexican corn farmers. This will level the playing field.  It will take several years for the Mexican corn market to recover from what the Wall Street minions in Congress have done to it, but it will recover, perhaps in five or six years.

                  2. Change the legislation that currently governs the distribution of farm subsidies and set up a program to use this money to correct our immigration problems. Currently the American taxpayers fork over $19 billion a year in farm subsidies to the rich and to Wall Street agribusiness crooks like Archer Daniel Midland [convicted of price fixing in 1996].  Only $350 million of these funds go to small American farmers who still live on the land that they farm.  Billions of dollars worth of these subsidies also go to “farmers” who live in New York City.  Even “grassroots” activist like Michele Bachmann has received $250,000 of government handouts in farm subsidies.

                  The legislation would read simply:  Only American farmers who live on the land they farm and from which is derived their primary income are eligible to receive farm subsidies from the American taxpayers.

                  That my friends, leaves us with a little more than $18.5 billion a year with which to apply to the solution of the part of our immigration problem that involves undocumented workers in our nation.  I suggest that we establish a team of citizens of which at least 50% are Mexican-American to decide how to use this money each year.  The plan that they would come up with must have an end goal set 5 to 7 years in the future.  It should also include a part that would also encourage some to return to Mexico because of a desirable opportunity there.

                  Eventually after 5 to 7 years this $18.5 billion [remember we are currently forking this over to the rich for no return on our investment] would either be returned to the American people in the form of a tax break, or we would find another way to use this money to the benefit of the MAJORITY of middle class Americans who live on Main Street and who support this nation with our taxes.

                  3.  At least seriously study the feasibility–economically and socially–of legalizing marijuana. Regardless all the hype, much of it paid for by the crooks who sell illegal drugs, marijuana is no more or less harmful to the human body than are alcohol and tobacco. All are not good; however, the legal status does little to deter use.  We should have learned our lesson from the prohibition of the 1920’s.  All that prohibition of alcohol did was to increase crime and make bootleggers like Al Capone into millionaires.

                  One thing that those who protest the legalization of marijuana tell us is that it leads to the use of other more serious drugs such as heroin and cocaine.  On a limited level this is true.  However it is true ONLY because the pot dealer, who deals in what is now a black market product, is the first contact layer, the connection  to those who deal the harsher drugs.  By legalizing marijuana we remove that layer.

                  Legalization of marijuana would provide revenue in the form of taxes and other jobs that might be created by its growth an packaging similar to the tobacco industry today.

                  Reyes Ferriz, the mayor of Juarez.  Ferriz recently spoke the truth during a forum in Austin, Texas.  I hope that US government officials will listen and then do something.

                  After 40 years of the fighting the War on Drugs, the U.S. hasn’t made a dent in its drug consumption. Instead it’s increased.

                  Mexican government officials are losing their lives to stop drugs from reaching the U.S.,” he said. “And once they are in the U.S. nothing happens.  .   .  Since President Calderon declared war on the cartels Mexico has reduced the amount of cocaine being funneled through the country from 90 percent to 60 percent, says Reyes Ferriz.

                  The cocaine is still being produced in copious amounts, only now it’s being funneled through the Caribbean as it was in the ‘80s. Already, drug related violence is increasing in Puerto Rico and other countries in the Caribbean, he said.

                  “Our definition of success for Mexico unfortunately, is to have the drugs go somewhere else, because it’s not stopping. We just don’t want it in our backyard. That’s the only definition we can have as long as the United States is the biggest consumer of drugs in the world.”

                  Proclaim the Queen!

                    You have an opportunity to stand up for humanity on May 1 in Dallas Texas at 1 PM. Where will you be?

                    April 29, 2010 in Immigration

                    from:  http://emmaberry.org

                    [The Queen's other site.]

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                    Proclaim the Queen!