Friday, May 21, 2010

Rand Paul, the GOP co-opted Tea Party, and Anti-Discrimination Laws...

Rand Paul a racist?

No. He was presented with what comes off every time as a classic false dichotomy argument based on what he sees in this instance as an example of the always false premise that the end justifies the means. He is objecting to anti-discrimination laws being applied to individuals and individual businesses because of his stance/belief/view of the Constitutional effects of such laws on individual liberty.

Remember that big-L Libertarianism is ALL based on property rights. From his POV (not necessarily my view - I think the whole question is more complicated than that) civil rights laws are bad because they keep people from using their own private property as they see fit.

I think there are people trying to brand him a racist. I don't think he is, but I do think he is not the brightest bulb in the political building. Of course, he's not going to show as a real libertarian, as the Tea Party has been co-opted by the far right wing of the GOP. I don't think there is justification for the attacks on Paul as a racist. Paul says he is against racism even in private businesses, the issue being one of political and Constitutional philosophy as to anti-discrimination enforcement on and over private property.

It seems to me that Dr. Paul understands that discrimination based on race is unjust but still thinks that the legislative effort to address it does not pass Constitutional muster.

I wonder if we are establishing that it is unacceptable to commit to a Constitutional principle to the point of rejecting legal remedies for injustice; i.e.: anti-discrimination laws that control the activities of individuals and individual businesses.

Immigration realities...

I was doing pre-inspects on a couple houses yesterday afternoon.

This is often what happens when I walk into an under-construction house:

There look to be about 5-6 Mexicans working out of an old van finishing up insulation and starting drywall - I can tell that somebody has been cooking food in the garage.

When I walk into the house, one of them sees me and vanishes into the family room, 3 or 4 of them leave the family room through the garage entry and get in the van. One comes inside the foyer to watch me and the other keeps working. I just nod to the one watching, he nods back, and I do my inspect and leave. (As soon as I leave the others will go back to work.)

In my experience it goes like this: there is only one English speaker, and probably only one or two "legals" in the crew. They are one of several crews, often family members, who are hired by one guy contracting with one of the builder's subcontractors (this insulates the builder from any immigration questions or legal responsibilities), who takes a big chunk of the workers' earnings in turn for letting them work for him.

The same organization (foreman or farm boss thing) happens with the Koreans, except that most of them are legal. The Koreans tend to do more intricate, time intensive labor across several trades, and the Mexicans do most of the grunt-type construction work.

This happens all over, in all good-size cities. Those of you who live and work in smaller cities may understand the problem, but probably don't grasp the size of it...

As far as I can tell, there is never any enforcement of immigration law, never even any questions asked by anyone.

The only time you hear of "raids" or any inspections, are with factory employees. Factory situations where illegals are employed are a very small percentage of the illegals working. I venture that most illegals are employed in construction and restaurant/hospitality and itinerate farm-work - although in the south, I have read that a lot of them are employed in the trucking industry.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The most dangerous words...

"If you're not doing anything wrong, then you've got nothing to fear."

It's a pretty far-reaching attitude problem with both Conservatives and Liberals. People who've never been persecuted give up their rights sooooo easily, when someone tells them it's for "the greater good."

Those words are about the most dangerous to ever come out of a supposedly free person's mouth...

Lotta rights been lost on that road... Funny how they're much easier given up than gotten back, ain't it?