I want to hear these Marines grunt. Help make it happen.
Well, the immigration bill is back. The fact that like 70% of Americans across the electorate hate it? That means nothing to those elected to, er, represent Americans.
BloodSpite, who has been leading a charge against the bill, has a new post on the subject. I'll just say this: I can't support any bill of this sort. I can see why we might want to allow Mexican immigration to continue at roughly the same levels we've seen -- we can't afford a failed Mexican state, and US cash is propping up its economy. Even by the lowest estimates, we're talking billions of dollars.
It's enough money, and enough of an influence, that former President Fox regularly referred to the same people we call "illegal immigrants" as "heroes."
The problem is that these amnesty bills don't recognize that our real reason for allowing this isn't a desire for immigrants, but a desire not to see Mexico collapse and have to deal with the fallout. As a result, any bill dealing with the issue needs to address that reality:
1) We need strong border controls. This is partially to ensure that we do have control of the border, which is the duty of a sovereign state. It is also a hedge against the possibility that Mexico fails in spite of our efforts to float them; and to deal with the criminal gangs already flourishing because of Mexican government weakness.
2) We need any "Z" type visa to permanently forbid the holder from ever pursuing US citizenship.
The reason for this is that we're allowing essentially unrestricted movement, in order to protect Mexico from collapse. In return for allowing them to export their poorest to us, and receive large sums of hard currency in return, we should be able to recognize that what we are doing is not "immigration as usual" but an emergency aid program.
That's fine -- I don't really hold it against anyone that they snuck across the border for work to feed his family, any more than I would hold stealing bread against a poor man. Somewhat less, in fact, since the guy is ready to work and work hard for the bread.
However, we're accepting them at a speed and level that we can't assimilate. In return for being allowed to come here and get the work they want and need, they should be willing to declare that their alliegiance remains to Mexico, and forgo voting in US elections. We should also change the law addressing citizenship to undo "birthright" citizenship, and instead do what almost all other nations do, and restrict citizenship to the children of citizens, plus those who lawfully nationalize.
If we do that, the immigration problem becomes a lot more tractable. We can start to address the real issues underlying the problem, without the fear and worry that makes up so much of the debate. Americans are worried, quite understandably, that their nation is being overrun, and will be deeply changed at the ballot box by people who came here in violation of the law. They don't want new citizens who felt no obligation to obey the law and the social contract from the start.
That seems reasonable to me. Make those changes -- seriously secure the border, and remove the path to citizenship -- and the rest we can talk about.
I don't pay attention to what Sock Puppet says either, but since it made InstaPundit:
Glenn Greenwald gets around, eventually, to making two points, One is that I'm a geek, whose interest in Western culture's retreat from traditional ideas of masculinity is thus silly:I've got two things to say about that. First, Sock Puppet is an "any stick" kind of guy. If you complain about it, it's silly because you're a geek, and he thinks geeks aren't manly. If I complain about it, he'd say, "But Grim is a gun-toting right-winger who actually wears a cowboy hat. Of course he thinks the country is going too soft."Glenn Reynolds -- who, by his own daily admission, devotes his life to attending convention center conferences on space and playing around with new, cool gadgets in the fun room in his house, like a sheltered adolescent in his secret treehouse club -- to fret: "Are we turning into a nation of wimps?"But, see, that's the point. I'm a geek. I I notice it, it's probably real. It would be like Greenwald complaining that the country was going overboard in hatred of Bush.
Second, maybe SP needs to meet another Geek I know. Could be he's not operating with all the necessary information.
There's obviously been a change in focus since I last looked into military martial arts. I mean, who ever expected to hear a Marine sergeant say something like this:
I am proud to be part of a program that teaches people of all ages and backgrounds how to protect themselves in a non-lethal way from the enemy.Nonlethal? I thought that meant you were doing it wrong.
It's not just the Marines -- the army has switched to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu as its martial arts form, in order to cut down on training injuries. The reason it cuts down on training injuries is that it's a form of jujitsu that was redesigned for tournament fighting. It is, in other words, safe -- for your opponent as well as yourself.
There might be reasons, of course, why you'd want to take someone alive -- particularly in COIN warfare. I understand that.
Master Ken Caton, formerly USMC Sergeant Ken Caton, was my teacher of jujitsu; he studied under Wally Jay, who turns 90 this year. I remember clearly something he told his students, who eventually became my students:
"What we're doing here is shorthand," he would say. "We can't do everything in the dojo that you need to do in real life. This art was designed by samurai, though, who never intended to leave an enemy alive.
"If you're ever out there and you get someone in an armbar lock, break their arm. If you get them in a wrist lock, break the wrist. That won't be enough, though -- it's just to buy a second to finish them. Break the arm, then go for their throat, for here or here. And remember: everything striking technique we do with the hands was originally designed to be done with a knife or a sword. If you have one, use one."
There is a philosophy underlying this, a moral ethic. You should not fight except to kill, because you should never fight except when killing is justified. If it is not, you should not fight at all.
If it is, if it truly is, fall on like a thunderbolt.
You probably saw this on Drudge, but... Reuters says that "U.S. voters may face outbreak of campaign fatigue."
Next week's headline: "U.S., Europe face outbreak of low infant mortality."
Campaigns are not meant to go on forever. It's unhealthy if they do. For one thing, politicians always in campaign mode never stop thinking about the political angles of their every word and action. A politician not in campaign mode might, just occasionally, do something because it was right rather than because it resonated with this-or-that constituency.
Ladies and gentlemen of the political class, let's have our campaigns in 2008. For the rest of 2007, why don't you just try to do what's right for the country -- not for your political futures.
An interesting report from PJM begins:
From his secret base Abdullah Mohtadi commands a small armed force inside Iraq and a vast clandestine network inside Iran.You might wish to read it.
“I didn’t believe in the so-called critical dialogue with Iran. We are for regime change, no matter what the Europeans or even the United States says,” Mohtadi tells me.
From Sir Walter Scott's classic:
[O]ur hero set forth with a fowling-piece in his hand, accompanied by his new friend Evan Dhu, and followed by the gamekeeper aforesaid, and by two Wild Highlanders, the attendants of Evan, one of whom had upon his shoulder a hatchet at the end of a pole, called a Lochaber-axe,38 and the other a long ducking-gun. Evan, upon Edward’s inquiry, gave him to understand that this martial escort was by no means necessary as a guard, but merely, as he said, drawing up and adjusting his plaid with an air of dignity, that he might appear decently at Tully-Veolan, and as Vich Ian Vohr’s foster-brother ought to do. ‘Ah!’ said he, ‘if you Saxon duinhe-wassel (English gentleman) saw but the Chief with his tail on!’We've spent the weekend at the Blairsville Scottish Highland Games, attending to the distress of an old friend. In spite of the which, it's been a fine weekend. Most of the old "Wild Highlanders" are bikers from way back, which is to say dangerous men of the gun-and-blade type.
‘With his tail on?’ echoed Edward in some surprise.
‘Yes — that is, with all his usual followers, when he visits those of the same rank. There is,’ he continued, stopping and drawing himself proudly up, while he counted upon his fingers the several officers of his chief’s retinue; ‘there is his hanchman, or right-hand man; then his bard, or poet; then his bladier, or orator, to make harangues to the great folks whom he visits; then his gilly-more, or armour-bearer, to carry his sword and target, and his gun; then his gilly-casfliuch, who carries him on his back through the sikes and brooks; then his gilly-comstrian, to lead his horse by the bridle in steep and difficult paths; then his gilly-trushharnish, to carry his knapsack; and the piper and the piper’s man[.]
It's good to have friends, brothers and sisters. It's a bad world, as my old friend John Ryan of Freemantle, Australia used to say. It hasn't gotten any better; so perhaps we should get a bit worse.