Friday, November 02, 2007

I'm back...

but thought I'd start using this blog to also discuss the e-mails that float around on various topics. Got one today that likened illegal immigration to burglary. Just thought I'd modify the scenario to paint a more accurate picture of what's happened in the US, particularly with Mexico.

Imagine I want someone to clean my house but don't want to pay market rates for their labor (I can't find people to do that kind of work for a price I find economical). Imagine my neighbors are the same. Now, imagine I find you on the street and you're willing to work for obscene wages so I invite you to live and work in my house. I turn a blind eye to your illegal status because the fruits of your labor are cheap and my household budget is much lower than it would have been otherwise. Thanks to your hard work, my standard of living is also much higher.

Imagine that you get old and I hire your children, and grandchildren for generations. Now imagine someone from another neighborhood, also full of houses with illegal help, discovers this situation and starts complaining about it. Is tossing you and your family out on their collective ear the appropriate course of action?

This analogy is obviously imperfect but makes a critical point in this debate: illegal immigration is not a new phenomenon. It's been happening for decades and it's financed a standard of living we wouldn't have otherwise had. Putting an end to it is all well and good, but viciously turning on people who helped build this country seems far from the right thing to do.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

It's getting chilly in Hades...

Words cannot describe my shock when I read about W giving tough love to American automakers. "Make a product that's relevant" he says. As someone who's witnessed American car manufacturers embarrass this great nation for going on 30 years, I couldn't have said it better myself.

Maybe if we declare war on Japan and throw in the towel before things get ugly, they’ll return the favor we did for them after the Big One by coming over and showing us how manufacturing is done in the big leagues. For now, I'll keep buying Toyotas and in this one, very specific case, throw my full support behind our commander-in-chief.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

My, how things change...

for now at least. It was with great amusement that I read about the revelation of Rick Santorum's "sunny day fundamentalism". I don't think either party has a strangle hold on hypocrisy, but given the arrogance that has accompanied the spending of W's "political capital", it's especially satisfying to some of his poker buddies scrambling to stay in office (almost a year before the next elections!).

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Christmas comes early...

and on many levels. The recent ruling by a Bush appointee that incorporating creationism into science curricula is "un-intelligent design" makes this blogger happier than a gopher in soft dirt. The news regarding the Senate's having seen through the machinations of a bunch of oil company shills to block unnecessary drilling in the Arctic Wildlife Refuge makes me feel greedy.

There has definitely been a shift in the cultural pendulum of late. How far and fast it swings remains to be seen. I, for one, am cautiously optimistic.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

W's approval rating

Fascinating how your perspective can be radically different depending on your news sources. From the headline, one can get the impression that Bush has failed to sway the American people on Iraq or (without reading to entire article), that his popularity is rebounding. While there is little doubt that a bit of encouraging economic news has been a ray of sunlight for our commander-in-chief, it's interesting to note that despite a full-court press tour, Americans aren't buying his rhetoric on the war in Iraq.

As I did during the last presidential election, I use Rasmussen as a bellwether. In that poll, Bush's popularity hasn't changed significantly (in my opinion) for some time.

It leaves this jaded patriot wondering (for the first time in a long time) if the system is working.

Monday, December 19, 2005

The Future of the Iraqi Government

The premature jubilation of our commander-in-chief notwithstanding, it's interesting to think about what form of government Iraq is likely to have in another few years. For my money, one needs look no further than Iraq's relatively mature (in a political sense) neighbor to the East. I would be thrilled if some one could convince me that there's some compelling set of reasons that preclude Iraq's devolving into the same type of fundamentalist theocracy that is thriving in Iran.

Monday, November 28, 2005

We love to set them up...

so we can knock 'em down. It will be interesting to see how Google fares the transition from media darling to huge, imposing mega-corporation. Is this a portent of Google's future?

I can sum up my prediction in two words: Wal-Mart.