Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Otra vez con la imigracion

The more I think about this issue, the more I think that the main problem may be the intractability of many conservatives. John Podhoretz makes an excellent comment on this point in The National Review's blog The Corner:

Suddenly, immigration restriction has become one of those issues about which one is not permitted to disagree, because to disagree is to join with the forces of Evil. Those who favor a less restrictive policy are said to be bought and paid for by Big Business, to want to oppress poor American minorities who can't earn a decent wage, and to seek the cultural destruction of America. Chief among these villains, it appears, is the president of the United States, whose efforts on behalf of conservative causes — from faith-based policies to stem-cell research to a strict-constructionist judiciary to entitlement reform and massive tax cuts — have all fallen down the memory hole. He is not a conservative, my e-mailers tell me. He is Jorge Arbusto, an agent of the Mexican government.

I like that last part. Conservatives have to remember to temper their ideal case with what may be achieved in the here and now. Podhoretz continues:

We are moving into very dangerous territory here — territory in which it has been declared that there is to be no debate, no discussion, and no heterodoxy any longer. This is how political-intellectual movements become diseased and sclerotic. This is how they die.

We have to make this work in a way that is consistent with our ideals and respects the law. Many conservatives seem unable to see the real possibility that both can be satisfied.


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