Archive for Immigration


If it’s good enough for Denmark and Sweden….

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Border crossing between Russia and Norway near Kirkenes
By Elmar78 (Self-photographed) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Bernie Sanders is fond of citing examples from Europe of the benefits of democratic socialism. Denmark and Sweden, for example. Yet Sanders’ conservative critics sneer at America taking policy cues from Europe. Except when they do. Like now.

Denmark approved a controversial plan to pay for the upkeep of asylum seekers by confiscating valuables in excess of about $1,500:

The bill has been widely criticised by human rights groups.

The prospect of refugees having possessions seized has drawn comparisons to the confiscation of valuables from Jews during World War Two.

The government has said that items of sentimental value, such as wedding rings, will be exempt. It also raised the amount refugees will be allowed to keep from 3,000 kroner to 10,000 following objections.

Sweden and Finland announced plans last week to join Norway in deporting tens of thousands of people seeking asylum from war in the Middle East. They are poised to begin the kind of wholesale deportation of immigrants that Donald Trump has proposed for the United States.

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Cowards and the cowardly cowards who lead them

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A lot of pant-wetting in the Home of the Brave yesterday as fear of #SyrianRefugees swept the intertubes.

It didn’t matter that all the attackers identified as of yesterday were French or Belgian nationals. It didn’t matter that
the Syrian passport found near the body of one of the Paris suicide bombers was a fake. Serbian police arrested a man Saturday with the same passport information except for the photo:

… according to the Serbian daily Blic, the existence of the second passport with the same data means “it is likely that the two men separately purchased false Syrian passports at the same forger in Turkey”.

Whatevs. Half the governors in the country yesterday (all Republicans but one) showed the rest of the world what Americans are made of:

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Veni, vidi, vaya con Dios

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It seems a bright eighth grader in Vermont thought it would be a good idea for the state to adopt a Latin motto. So Republican state Sen. Joe Benning introduced legislation recommending Stella quarta decima fulgeat (“May the fourteenth star shine bright”). The phrase harkens back to when Vermont entered the union as the 14th state.

Wonkette has what happened next:

And then Burlington TV station WCAX put the story on its Facebook page with the headline, “Should Vermont have an official Latin motto?” and all Stupid broke loose when morons thought that Vermont was knuckling under to a bunch of goddamned illegal immigrants.

An email from Benning to the Vermont Political Observer captured the irony:

I anticipated suffering the backroom internal joking from my colleagues in the legislature. What I did not anticipate was the vitriolic verbal assault from those who don’t know the difference between the Classics and illegal immigrants from South America.

A couple of samples:

“I thought Vermont was American not Latin? Does any Latin places have American mottos?”
“ABSOLUTLY NOT!!!! sick and tired of that crap, they have their own countries”
“How do you say idiotic senator in spanish? I’d settle for deport illegals in spanish as a back up motto”
“Hell No! This is America, not Latin America. When in Rome do as the Romans do!”

Later commenters jumped in to lampoon the earlier posts, of course. Wonkette and the Vermont Political Observer have more.

Quod erat demonstrandum.

(Cross-posted from Hullabaloo.)

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And now?

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Categories : Immigration, National
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No ID Required To Buy An Election, Just To Vote In One

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The GOP insists you prove your identity to vote. But if you want to spend millions to sway U.S. elections, they’ll protect your anonymity, even if you are a non-citizen. Harold Meyerson writes:

Voter suppression has become the linchpin of Republican strategy. After Mitt Romney’s defeat in 2012, the GOP was briefly abuzz with talk of expanding the party’s appeal to young and Latino voters. Instead, the party doubled down on its opposition to immigration reform and its support for cultural conservatism — positions tantamount to electoral suicide unless the youth and minority vote can be suppressed.

Meyerson discusses the “interstate shell games” wealthy right-wing donors play to prevent the public from knowing the their identities as the sources of so much negative campaign “speech.”

But you may need a court order to get the documentation they insist you must produce before you can exercise your right to vote. This passes for common sense in some sectors.

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Arizona, Here We Come!

Courtesy of Rep. Nathan Ramsey’s office. Joe Arpaio will be proud. Pink undies next, Nathan?

Buncombe GOP Facebook Page


From the Office of Rep. Nathan Ramsey providing information on HB786 :


Information on House Bill 786 up for a vote Monday, July 15th for the Second and Third Reading in the House.


RECLAIM NC is a law enforcement / public safety bill that has been carefully crafted to address hardened criminal activity in our state. The bill applies to citizens and non-citizens alike. The bill creates new statutes, enhances some existing statutes and imposes stiffer penalties on the activities that support various criminal activities.


HB786 addresses Identity Theft by making it a Class H Felony to “manufacture or sell” counterfeit documents. Currently, it is only a Class 1 misdemeanor.


HB 786 creates a “rebuttal presumption” against bail for certain crimes perpetrated by people in the State illegally, who may pose a threat to society or a flight risk if released on bail. It creates a tier of secured bail requirements for various other crimes, under the same conditions. This will help protect the citizens of NC by keeping the undesirable element off the street for longer periods of time.


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America The Lost

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(Crossposted from the Huffington Post)

After last year’s summer of discontent, I looked back on America’s response to September 11:

A flood of post-September 11 articles asked how the attacks happened, what we would do next, and why terrorists hate us. One savvy pundit asked, Would America keep its head?

We invaded Iraq on trumped-up intelligence. We conducted illegal surveillance on our own citizens. We imprisoned people without charge, here and abroad. We rendered prisoners for torture and tortured others ourselves in violation of international law. All the while, millions of staunch, law-and-order conservatives supported and defended it, and still do. Vigorously.

Did America keep its head? Uh, no.

After an earlier national tragedy, the 1986 Challenger disaster, the broadcast networks filled air time by bringing on psychologists. How absurd it seemed to have TV psychologists telling us how we should feel about it and explain it to the kids. Today, of course, absurd is the new normal. Today we have the conservative Mighty Wurlitzer going all E. Power Biggs on America, telling us 24/7 not how we should feel but whom we should fear. And week by week it is becoming increasingly hard to keep up with whom the home of the brave is supposed to fear.

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Categories : Economy, Immigration, News, Obama
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Spotted on a planter in front of the Rise ‘n Shine Cafe on Merrimon Ave. this morning (click to enlarge):


Hot Carl in Freefall

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Carl Mumpower is going to play even worse with the Republican base than I could have imagined. The dead-enders who still think George W. Bush is doing a good job are not going to forgive Carl for calling for the President’s impeachment. Carl’s trying to get to Shuler’s right on immigration, but the only thing to the right of Shuler on this issue is a steep political cliff that Mumpower’s driven over.

He can play the maverick, but mavericks attract followings and get things done. Hot Carl is more of a bothersome iconoclast, his years of oppositional behavior on City Council standing as a monument to generating theater more often than results.


Senate: Liddy fires the first shot!

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I saw this during Jeopardy! last night. It’s ostensibly about illegal immigration, but I guess it ultimately serves as proof that Watergate Hotel resident Elizabeth Dole was actually in North Carolina long enough to shoot this ad:

You know that last scene on the beach? I almost expected to see the wind blowing her hair to the left… then the wind blowing her hair to the right… then the wind blowing her hair into the ocean.

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