Archive for category: Libertarianism

Emergency Declarations

18 Feb
February 18, 2019

President Trump decides to declare a national emergency over the border wall. Partisans on both sides have spewed their normal rhetoric defending the views of their tribes. In one of those tribal rhetorics, Speaker Pelosi said this would make it easier for the next president to declare a national emergency on guns. I’ve heard derision of the comment from the RKBA crowd, but I think she’s right.

There are issues on the border with smuggling and the cartels, but not the kind that pose a direct and immediate threat to the nation as a whole or a segment of the nation. That’s kind of like saying the bad parts of Chicago pose a direct and immediate threat to the nation or Illinois, and the president should declare a national emergency to build a wall around those neighborhoods. Please don’t bring up the terrorism bullshit. There has been no credible evidence of any terrorists coming up the southern border.

What Trump has done with this emergency declaration is add another stone to the path towards the conversion from a presidency to an emperor. Trump is not unusual in this. I’m not sure if he’s going to end up adding more stones to the path than Bush II or Obama. I don’t know if this action will end up being a large paving stone or a small cobblestone. Either way, it’s another stone.

I don’t think Trump will declare himself Donald Augustus I when his term comes to an end. I do think he’s added another accepted power to the one who will.

Operation Chokepoint – Not Just Guns

23 Jan
January 23, 2019

We in the gun world know all about Operation Chokepoint and its impact. I didn’t think it would impact something like death metal. From one of those affected:

When the processors would run a check on me and my business it comes back as HIGH RISK and RERPUTATIONAL RISK some of the red flags come back as: Promoting hate speech, promoting rape, promoting violence and promoting hatred.

“An absolute atrocious characterization and a very convenient way of fusing music band names, titles to an actual call to arms. The slightly veiled assertion is one that marks me as one who is inciting these actions. The overlords now wish to control what you can sell and what you can purchase. Speaking with a few individuals within the banking system (underwriters) as well as other labels [I learned that] this started with Operation Choke Point from the DOJ to curtail predatory lending, which, like most [rulings] has now expanded its tentacles.”

Friday Quote – Margaret Thatcher

18 Jan
January 18, 2019

Left-wing zealots have often been prepared to ride roughshod over due process and basic considerations of fairness when they think they can get away with it. For them the ends always justify the means. That is precisely how their predecessors came to create the gulag.

Derek’s Immigration Scheme

17 Jan
January 17, 2019

I’ve been listening to the subtext to the wall debate, and it really comes down to immigration. How many people should we let in and how should we decide to let in? It isn’t easy, because America has a long tradition of being the beacon of hope for people who want to make a new life. We’ve always accepted, if not easily, immigrants, and integrated them into the larger American ideal.

Some of the issues that I’m seeing: 1. A demand for low-skilled, low-cost labor for some segments of the economy. 2. Democrats hoping to import a large enough voter base to replace the blue-collar white demographic that their current identity politics agenda is alienating. 3. Republicans (under Trump) supporting a backlash against what it thinks is an invasion of illegals coming up from the southern border, as well as a strong nativist element. 4. Humanitarian issues in Central and South America as well as the Middle East driven mostly by corrupt regimes exacerbated by American policies (namely the War on Drugs and the War on Terror). 5. The need to keep out individuals who have a demonstrated pattern of causing harm to others (i.e., criminals, terrorists).

In another of my early morning/half-asleep ruminations, I started fleshing out a system. This is the kind of system I would consider implementing if anyone was foolish enough to give me full autocratic power. Because I have a streak of the patriotic, I’m calling these Blue, Red, and White paths.

Citizenship – Blue Path

My general requirements for citizenship would generally be limited to ensuring the individual does not have a demonstrated pattern of causing harm to others (i.e., criminals, terrorists) and is willing to swear the oath. The reason I would make it that simple is because I would limit the number of people allowed in under the citizenship path each year to approximately 5% of the last census. So, for a country of 320 million, that would mean 16 million slots. So, how to decide who comes in? I break it into three groups.

  1. Merit-based immigrants – These would be based on a point system designed to find those immigrants who will have an estimated net benefit to society and the economy as well as having few integration issues. Things that would provide high points would be in-demand job skills, literacy in English (it is the current lingua franca of the country), immediate family that are already citizens, willingness to serve in the military, and prior work visas or temporary residency visas with no issues. These would be approximately fifty-percent of the available slots.
  2. Asylumn Seekers – These are not refugees (which will be addressed later), but those who are coming to America because of dangers in their country of origin and wish to settle here permanently. There should be a demonstrated danger to life. These would be approximately forty-percent of the available slots.
  3. Fee Immigrants – These are people who may not qualify based on points or for asylum, and are willing to pay for citizenship. The cost should be equal to two years’ of the median salary. So, as of 2019, approx. $96,000. The immigrant or a sponsor may pay this fee. This fee would go specifically to funding immigration processing. These would be approximately ten percent of the available slots, or any unused slots from the above two groups at the end of the fiscal year.

Now, here’s the kicker for Blue Path. I would let the states accept additional immigrants under the own rules. These additional immigrants must meet the basic citizenship criteria. The states would be allowed to accept up to three percent of their last census population. So, for Florida, the state would allowed to bring in an additional 600,000 immigrants based on its own criteria. The states would be responsible for processing these immigrants to the federal standard. Failure would result in suspension of that state’s immigration authority until federal courts were satisfied that the state was in compliance.

Temporary Residency – Red Path

This would allow for people to stay in the United States for a determined period. They must have no demonstrated pattern of causing harm to others (i.e., criminals, terrorists). While here, they can work, study, or travel. They can come and go as much as they like within the defined time period. What they cannot do is vote or receive federal benefits. I don’t like the concept of permanent residency or limited scope visas. If you want to come here for a limited time, I don’t care. I would set these to:

  1. Sixty-day visas – These are aimed at travelers and short-term workers. These would not be available for renewal. If a person wants to come twice in the year, they would have to apply for a second sixty-day visa. These would be on a first-come, first-serve basis. These would be limited to twenty percent of last census per year. So, for 2019, approximately 64 million sixty-day visas would be issued.
  2. Two-year visas – These are aimed at longer-term workers, graduate students, and those who want to live in America while applying for citizenship. These can be renewed once for an additional two years and bypass the annual issuance thresholds. These would be issued on point basis with a preference for work or study. These would be limited to twenty percent of last census per year. So, for 2019, approximately 64 million two-year visas would be issued.
  3. Five-year visas – These are aimed at university students, entrepreneurs, workers, and family members of citizens. These can be renewed without limit and bypass the annual issuance thresholds. Yes, I know this means a person can be a permanent “temporary resident” if they are diligent about renewing their visa. These would be limited to 10 percent of last census per year. So, for 2019, approximately 32 million five-year visas would be issued.

So, what happens if someone overstays their visa? Automatic deportation to their country of origin and a ban on applying for a visa for a minimum of one year, or the length of the original visa, whichever is longer. A temporary resident convicted of a violent felony will be deported to their country of origin after serving their sentence with an additional ten years added to their ban on applying for a visa.

Refugees – White Path

Refugees are fleeing a temporary humanitarian emergency in their country of origin and are expected to return to their country after the emergency is passed. Because of the nature of the emergency, it may not be possible to screen for demonstrated pattern of causing harm to others. As such, refugees will be settled into camps. These camps will consist of no more than 10,000 refugees and provide minimum amenities and basic services. All able-bodied persons above the age of 16 will be required to work in the camps. People designated as refugees may not apply for sixty-day visas, but may apply for any other visa or citizenship. Failure to work will result in deportation to country of origin. Conviction of a felony while in the camp will result in deportation to country of origin. Being outside the camp without authorization will result in deportation to country of origin. Refugees may not stay in the camp longer than the duration of the emergency or one year, whichever is longer.

Illegal Aliens

So, what about those here illegally? I would break them up into three classes.

  1. Class 1 Illegal Aliens – These are those who overstayed their visas. I’ve already detailed in the Red Path what would happen to these individuals.
  2. Class 2 Illegal Aliens – These are those who are back in the country after being deported or without ever having a visa. First violation would be deportation with a five-year ban on applying for a visa or citizenship. Second violation would be deportation with a lifetime ban on applying for a visa or citizenship.
  3. Class 3 Illegal Aliens – Intruders – These are individuals who are back in the country who already have two violations under the Class 2 criteria, those without a visa who are convicted of a violent felony, and/or those who have a demonstrated pattern of causing harm to others. This is going to sound contrary to my opposition to capital punishment, but these individuals would be executed. These are people who have shown a pattern of invasion and/or causing harm to the citizenry of this nation. At that point, they’re intruders. We kill intruders.

For the ones currently in the country at the time of implementation, I would give them thirty days to apply for either a visa or citizenship. After that, they will be treated as Class 2 Illegal Aliens.

Friday Quote – H.L. Mencken

14 Dec
December 14, 2018

The kind of man who wants the government to adopt and enforce his ideas is always the kind of man whose ideas are idiotic.

Single Payer Is Not A Good Thing

12 Dec
December 12, 2018

John Stossel has an article over at Reason on some of the reasons why single-payer healthcare is a bad thing. One of the fun quotes:

…Canada, England, Norway, Cuba, and a few other countries do have genuine single-payer. I’m constantly told that it works well—people get good care and never have to worry about a bill. They spend less on health care and live longer.

[Chris] Pope says that claim is naive.

They do live longer in many of those countries, but it’s not because they get superior health care; it’s because fewer of them are fat; fewer crash cars; and they shoot each other less often. “Take out (obesity), car accidents and gun violence, the difference in life expectancy disappears entirely,” Pope says.

The article doesn’t even touch one of my fundamental critiques – namely, don’t give government control of stuff you don’t want to see denied to people who think like you. Both sides have weaponized different parts of the government for their own ends. Now imagine what they can do with total control over healthcare.

Friday Quote – H.L. Mencken

07 Dec
December 7, 2018

The trouble with fighting human freedom is that one spends most of one’s time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.

Gun Cams For Cops

06 Dec
December 6, 2018

From the Gun Writer comes a story about an Arizona department adding cameras to their guns. They will start recording when drawn and stop recording when holstered.

Personally, I like the idea. I think body and gun cameras when used appropriately can help protect LEOs from false accusations, bring bad LEOs to account, provide neutral evidence, and be used for training.

The trick is to make sure that the cameras are used, and used appropriately, and the chain of custody is followed.

Friday Quote – George Orwell

30 Nov
November 30, 2018

If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.

ACLU Decides It Doesn’t Like Some Civil Liberties

29 Nov
November 29, 2018

Growing up, the American Civil Liberties Union was one of those principled organizations that I often disagreed with, sometimes celebrated, but never doubted their commitment to their core principles.

Then Charlottesville. And the ACLU decides it won’t defend free speech if guns are involved.

Now, the ACLU is coming out against stronger due process in college inquisitions for sexual misconduct. When you’ve lost The Atlantic

My big gripe with the NRA in recent years (and GOA for a while) is being more interested in being a conservative organization instead of a civil rights organization. Now, I watch as the ACLU does the same thing on the other side of the aisle.