center for american progress
Center for American Progress
Left-wing "progressive" thinktank in Washington DC. Founded by former Clinton chief of staff John Podesta. Now a source of both ideas and people for the Obama administration.
They also support illegal immigration; per them, a "progressive" precept is opposition to xenophobia, and in their case that's manifested by supporting illegal activity. One of their senior fellows is part of the Mexican government's extended network. They also run the blog ThinkProgress, a juvenile site that specializes in gaffes, mockery, enforcing political correctness, and the like. That blog also refers to mainstream rightwing talk radio as "hate radio", and CAP released a study arguing for "localism" and opposing media consolidation, two things that would help drive rightwing talkers off the air. Both those are supported by Barack Obama.
Americans for a Conservative Direction ad "Choices" misleads about immigration (Zuckerberg, Facebook) - 06/10/14
"Americans for a Conservative Direction" is a front group for FWD US, which is a front group started by billionaire Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook and other wealthy Silicon Valley employers. Their latest ad is called "Choices" and it's as deceptive as you might expect.
What "Young Invincibles" dare not tell you (youth joblessness, Campaign for Young America, Rory O’Sullivan, Alistair Johnston) - 07/10/12
It's an indisputable fact that hundreds of thousands or millions of illegal aliens are doing jobs that unemployed young people could be doing.
So, it's a bit curious that a new report on youth joblessness by the "Young Invincibles" (part of the left-leaning Campaign for Young Americans, "CYA") doesn't mention that. We're talking about hundreds of thousands or millions of potential jobs, yet there's only one brief mention of immigration in their report.
Center for American Progress unwittingly admits attrition works (Leah Muse-Orlinoff, immigration, self deport) - 02/22/12
The Center for American Progress has released a study in which they attempt to claim that immigration attrition (see the link) doesn't work. What they do instead is unwittingly admit that it does work, it just needs to be nationwide.
Leah Muse-Orlinoff  offers "Staying Put but Still in the Shadows: Undocumented Immigrants Remain in the Country Despite Strict Laws" :
The Center for American Progress has redesigned their website, and it's far worse than what it was before. I don't usually comment on technical matters here, but there's a political angle: CAP is deeply linked into the Obama administration and they want to control policy. At the same time, they can't even put together a website that works.
Rupert Murdoch of Fox News testified before Congress today in support of comprehensive immigration reform (aka amnesty) and in support of massive immigration in general. And, two studies he used to buttress his argument are from the leftwing, Obama-linked Center for American Progress.
News Corporation CEO Rupert Murdoch said he supports amnesty for “law abiding” illegal immigrants because as legal residents they can help the nation’s economy by adding to “our tax base.” He also said he supports securing the border to prevent more illegal immigrants from entering the United States.
Most illegal aliens are low-skilled workers, meaning they couldn't help that much and in most cases would end up costing more (see the 1997 NAS study, not yet discussed here). And, as with most others who are weak on or supporters of amnesty, he throws out the secure the border bone.
"While supporting complete and proper closure of all our borders to future illegal immigrants, our partnership (the Partnership for a New American Economy) advocates reform that gives a path to citizenship for responsible, law-abiding immigrants who are in the U.S. today without proper authority..."
It is nonsense to talk of expelling 12 million people,” testified Murdoch. “Not only is it impractical, it is cost prohibitive."
Murdoch cited a study that gauged “the price of mass deportation at $285 billion over five years,” which amounts to $57 billion per year, adding that “there are better ways to spend our money.”
“A full path to legalization--requiring unauthorized immigrants to register, undergo a security check, pay taxes and learn English--would bring these immigrants out of a shadow economy and add to our tax base,” said Murdoch.
He continued, “According to one study, a path to legalization would contribute an estimated $1.5 trillion to the Gross Domestic Product over 10 years.”
1. In the first paragraph he's advocating for amnesty.
2. In the second paragraph, he's engaging in the deportations false choice fallacy.
3. The study referenced in the third paragraph is a study from the Center for American Progress that uses a highly flawed methodology to arrive at that figure.
4. In the fourth paragraph, he uses the living in the shadows canard and also doesn't reveal the huge flaws in comprehensive immigration reform. Those include the background checks either taking somewhere between five to ten years or those checks being cursory at best. And, once again, the great majority of newly-legalized illegal aliens would owe little taxes and some might even get a tax refund of some kind.
5. The last paragraph references another flawed Center for American Progress study.
You'd think that relying on two bogus CAP studies would be enough to earn him a break from his new friends, yet Andrea Nill of ThinkProgress writes this (thinkprogress.org/2010/09/30/murdoch-immigration-fox):
Earlier this year, Murdoch indicated that the media should be involved in the push for comprehensive immigration reform. However, Fox News employees don’t seem to agree. The Wonk Room shows that more than any other network, Fox News has repeatedly and consistently advocated against immigration reform and referred to Murdoch's proposal as "amnesty."
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) called Murdoch out on the blatant contradiction later in the hearing, pointing out, "it does not appear that what you are talking and the way you are discussing it is the way it is discussed on Fox." Murdoch defended his position and his network:
I'm not really that shocked that Nill or Waters would be in favor of Murdoch turning Fox into a propaganda outlet for amnesty. I am, however, just a little shocked that they'd be so overt about it.
And, obviously, the fact that those Murdoch is promoting and helping have no use for him unless he agrees with them 100% probably flew right over his head; he was too distracted by the dollar signs from the fantasy he's promoting.
Under the Bush administration, the Department of Homeland Security engaged in a small number of showy but not overly effective immigration raids. Under the Obama administration, the DHS switched to (in addition generally not doing its job) what are called "silent raids" where they audit a company's employment records and then request that the employees are fired if they can't prove they're here legally. That lets illegal aliens stay in the U.S. and simply go find work at another company. And, that helps the Democrats maintain a power base. (Over nine months ago I urged people to ask Janet Napolitano about this at one of her public appearances).
Not only does the Obama administration cause long-term difficulties for American workers with this policy, but they're also letting employers off the hook (link):
...ICE audit records obtained recently through a Freedom of Information Act request show that the agency has, in many instances, failed to punish companies found to have significant numbers or high percentages of workers with questionable documents... The records show inspectors identified more than 110 companies with suspect documents, with nearly half of those having questionable paperwork for 10 or more workers... In total, the agency ordered 14 companies to pay fines of nearly $150,000, but noted no employer arrests in connection with any of the cases...
ICE doesn't have much of a defense:
[ICE points] to the fact that this fiscal year the agency has ordered businesses to pay a record-setting $4.6 million in civil penalties and has arrested more than 150 employers, managers or supervisors. However, some of the arrests stem from investigations going back several years. And the fines reflect enforcement actions that date as far back as 2007, including $360,000 from the 2008 raid of a Houston rag factory and more than $536,000 from a 2007 Ohio chicken factory raid. ...ICE did not have a breakdown of how much of the $4.6 million or how many of the arrests stemmed directly from the audit initiative, which began in July 2009.
Note also that one of the components of comprehensive immigration reform is increased enforcement, including cracking down on employers of illegal aliens. Some Democrats even stress that they want to do that now. Are you willing to trust that "reform" would include stepped-up enforcement given the above?
"You have this drip, drip, drip of I-9 enforcement audits all over the country, and it has the same effect - people don’t come to work the next day."
Those she's referring to aren't supposed to be here in the first place; she's on their side and not on the side of American workers.
U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez conducted yet another pro-comprehensive immigration reform event today, this in support of his CIRASAP ("Comprehensive Immigration Reform for America's Security and Prosperity Act") amnesty. It's reached the milestone of over 100 co-sponsors, and per this those speaking in support included Reps. Barbara Lee, Anthony Weiner, and Jared Polis; Campus Progress (part of the Center for American Progress); and the quite far-left Casa de Maryland.
(Rep. Mike Honda), standing next to a young girl, asked the room if it was right to deny her the American Dream because, although a citizen herself, her parents are not. Polis addressed the fear that comes with uncertain status. "Kids come home not knowing if their parents will be in detention," he said.
That's definitely an unfortunate situation, but no one in the U.S. is responsible for putting her in the situation. Her parents voluntarily decided to come here illegally and it's important not to encourage others to do the same. Honda, obviously, isn't supporting proper public policy.
Rep. (Jose Serrano) (D-New York), for example, said, "We have to challenge those who oppose us to tell us why," before adding that Congressmen who do not support immigration reform should not "advertise in Spanish."
1. This site accepts the challenge; the thousands of posts here about this issue will tell Serrano all he needs to know but I'm willing to debate him. The likelihood of that happening is indeed slim, but I'll tweet my acceptance of his challenge @RepJoseSerrano
2. For a starting point, one argument against what they want is the development of a Canadian-style bilingualism, with politicians feeling a need to advertise in both Spanish and English not to mention "press 1 for English" and so on. And, not to mention the fact that sometimes the messaging to the two groups is different.
Obama wants $500 million to send National Guard to secure the border (prelude to amnesty) - 05/25/10
"[The troops will] provide intelligence; surveillance and reconnaissance support; intelligence analysis; immediate support to counternarcotics enforcement; and training capacity until Customs and Border Patrol can recruit and train additional officers and agents to serve on the border... [the funding will be used to] enhance technology at the border, share information and support with state, local, and tribal law enforcement, and increase DoJ and DHS presence and law enforcement activities at the border, to include increased agents, investigators, and prosecutors, as part of a multi-layered effort to target illicit networks trafficking in people, drugs, illegal weapons, and money."
It's very important to bear the context in mind. Securing the border is vitally important, and this is great news from that standpoint. However, it's also important not to be snookered: the Obama administration might declare the border secure after a few months and then use that to push comprehensive immigration reform, aka amnesty. And, since most political leaders that discuss immigration matters from the "tough" standpoint harp only on securing the border, this might be seen as Obama playing a political game in order to "give them what they want", in order to get what he wants.
And, it's important to bear in mind that this follows Obama welcoming Mexico's president to the White House with open arms, with the Democrats in Congress going as far as giving Calderon a standing ovation for opposing a law supported by 60% to 70% of Americans.
And, it's important to keep recent history in mind. Recall that just over four years ago, Karl Rove supported putting the National Guard on the border, just as then-Arizona governor Janet Napolitano had requested. That "Operation Jump Start" made for a wonderful photo op with George W Bush, but the goal was clear: look like they were doing something in order to get amnesty.
Then as now this is a good move, although it's very important to make sure it's not a prelude to something else.
UPDATE: In case all of the above wasn't clear, the Mexican government has now weighed in (portal.sre.gob.mx/usa/
Regarding the Administration’s decision to send 1,200 National Guard servicemen to the US Southern border, the Government of Mexico trusts that this decision will help to channel additional US resources to enhance efforts to prevent the illegal flows of weapons and bulk cash into Mexico, which provide organized crime with its firepower and its ability to corrupt.
Additionally, the Government of Mexico expects that National Guard personnel will strengthen US operations in the fight against transnational organized crime that operates on both sides of our common border and that it will not, in accordance to its legal obligations, conduct activities directly linked to the enforcement of immigration laws.
It'd be interesting to know exactly what "legal obligations" they're referring to; obviously they have no right to tell us how or where we do immigration enforcement inside the U.S. That said, there's a good chance that Obama has already agreed to the Mexico's demands and this current move is one result of an agreement made on Calderon's recent visit.
President Barack Obama on Tuesday authorized the deployment of up to 1,200 additional troops to border areas but State Department spokesman Philip Crowley told reporters, "It's not about immigration."
He said the move was "fully consistent with our efforts to do our part to stem, you know, violence, to interdict the flow of dangerous people and dangerous goods -- drugs, guns, people."
..."We have explained the president's announcement to the government of Mexico, and they fully understand the rationale behind it," Crowley said.
Crowley was formerly with the Center for American Progress.
And, from this:
President Barack Obama's Democratic allies in the Senate have repelled a move by presidential rival John McCain to send an additional 6,000 National Guard troops to the U.S-Mexico border... The Arizona Republican says the security situation along the order has deteriorated so badly that 3,000 guard troops are needed just to help protect his state. But McCain failed to muster the required 60 votes for his plan as the Senate continued debate on an a war funding bill.
UCLA CAP IPC deceptive study: immigration reform would increase GDP by $1.5 trillion over 10 years - 01/07/10
Earlier today, the Center for American Progress, the Immigration Policy Center, and professor Raul Hinojosa Ojeda of the University of California at Los Angeles released a study making the deceptive and fantastical claim that legalizing all illegal aliens would increase Gross Domestic Product by $1.5 trillion over 10
Janet Napolitano falsely says she needs immigration "reform" to do her job; says border more secure; sounds like Chertoff - 11/13/09
Speaking at the Center for American Progress earlier today (prepared remarks: www.dhs.gov/ynews/speeches/sp_1258123461050.shtm NYT article: link full video: americanprogress.org/events/2009/11/Napolitano.html), Department of Homeland Security secretary Janet Napolitano said that she needs comprehensive immigration reform (downsides at the link) to do her job and that such "reform" (aka amnesty) is more attainable due both to supposed increased border security and due to fewer people trying to cross because of the economic downturn. In her speech, she sounded almost exactly like Michael Chertoff and used several of the stock talking points such as secure the border and living in the shadows. She also gave a shout-out to John Podesta of CAP and specifically mentioned the National Association of Evangelicals as one of the groups supporting "reform"; most of that group's member organizations are actually neutral or opposed to "reform".
It's extremely unfortunate that I was unable to get anyone else that I know of to help with my plan to ask her a question at today's event. People are willing to stand on street corners and wave loopy signs, but getting them to do things that could be devastatingly effective is incredibly difficult. Because of the flaws in her comments, someone who's familiar with this issue and who's familiar with "cross-examining" people could have undercut her argument and made her look very bad. That would help reduce the chances of "reform". If people aren't willing to confront politicians, they'll just keep on doing the bad things they're doing.
One of her remarks was this Chertoff-like bit:
When it comes to immigration, I took an oath as Secretary of Homeland Security to secure the nation by enforcing the law and managing legal flows across the border. Let me be clear: to do this job as effectively as possible, DHS needs immigration reform.
She is, of course, lying. Doing her job would involve enforcing the laws and trying to reduce the number of illegal aliens in the U.S. As a recent enforcement action shows, she is not interested in doing that. Every illegal alien who stays in the U.S. is a potential Democratic voter if she can get the amnesty that she and Obama want.
She said that "immigration reform will be a boon to American workers" which is completely false; see the immigration wage floor page.
She also supported chain migration, saying that "Community and faith leaders have also emphasized to me that we need reform because of how difficult the current laws can be on families, especially families of mixed legal status. Our immigration system is outdated where families are concerned, and we need to modernize and streamline the laws governing this process."
And, she supported increasing high-tech visa limits (aka the H1B program). That was after she "held a forum where [she] heard from technology executives in Silicon Valley". Obviously, Napolitano is great at only hearing one side of the story: she also referenced meetings she's held across the U.S. with "stakeholders", saying that "all [at the meetings] reach[ed] the same conclusion: we need reform". Napolitano, someone supposedly working for all of us, is ignoring the input of a majority of Americans and viewpoints that disagree with her.
Some of her remarks follow:
"Enough is Enough!" anti-Lou Dobbs campaign from Democracia Ahora (DNC link, Obama too?; Bendixen) - 09/18/09
In addition to the Drop Dobbs campaign, another group is starting their own push in an attempt to silence Lou Dobbs. This group has links to the Obama administration and the Democrats that are slightly closer than the other, and given that Obama lied about Lou Dobbs during the election, it would be interesting to know the degree to which there's any coordination.
The campaign is from Democracia Ahora - run by Jorge Mursuli - and is called "Enough is Enough!" (TellCNNEnoughisEnough.com). They commisioned Sergio Bendixen's firm to conduct what amounts to an extraordinarily biased push-poll of 100 Hispanic leaders about Dobbs; it hasn't been released but for an example of their intellectual integrity here's one of the questions from the Politico report by Carol Lee (link):
"Many Hispanics are offended by the news content of Lou Dobbs’ show and regard him as a demagogue who is helping to create a negative image of Hispanics. Do you agree or disagree with this assessment?"
Those who took part in the poll - almost assuredly among the 90% who agreed with the preceding question - include Sen. Bob Menendez, Dan Restrepo (a member of President Obama’s National Security Council, who Democracia Ahora says was interviewed while he was a director for the Americas Project at Center for American Progress), and Reps. Raul Grijalva and Lucille Roybal Allard.
Communications for "Enough is Enough!" are being handled by another Miami-based firm, Balsera Communications, which is run by Freddy Balsera, who coordinated Hispanic media for the Obama campaign and is co-chair of the Democratic National Committee’s National Hispanic Leadership Council.
Note also this ironic bit:
“We’re asking CNN, the alleged ‘most trusted name in news,’ to really hold Lou Dobbs to the journalistic standards he should be held to,” said Jorge Mursuli, president of Democracia Ahora, who expressed frustration with Dobbs’ reports that immigration contributed to thousands of new reported cases of leprosy and of a ‘superhighway’ from Mexico to Canada.
In April 2008, Barack Obama seemed to confirm the NAFTA superhighway, so maybe Mursuli would like to conduct a campaign against him.
Van Jones - Barack Obama's "green jobs czar" - quit just four days ago, but the landing was rather soft: he's been re-hired by the Obama administration-linked Center for American Progress (link). He had previously been a senior fellow there, and now he's back.
UPDATE: Now, Ben Smith of the Politico says (politico.com/blogs/bensmith/0909/Report_Jones_to_CAP.html) he asked Jennifer Palmieri of CAP about this and she said there was no such plan in place, though she said the organization has nothing against Jones and didn't rule out his returning.
However, from washingtonindependent.com/58305/van-jones-to-cap-apparently-not:
Palmieri says that Jones has been offered office space at CAP, though he will not be working for the organization. “Van was as senior fellow here at CAP and a good friend of ours, and we have offered office space for him to work out of while he figures out what he wants to do next,” she told Politico. “We don’t believe he’s decided what job he wants.”
SPLC smears Steve Levy in quest to support illegal activity (Suffolk County, Long Island; CAP) - 09/02/09
The Southern Poverty Law Center has a new report entitled "Climate of Fear/Latino Immigrants in Suffolk County, N.Y." about that county on Long Island, New York (splcenter.org/news/item.jsp?aid=395). County executive Steve Levy has attempted to reduce illegal immigration in his county, such as by taking actions against residences where dozens of illegal aliens live; see this from 2005 and also this (involving then-Mexican consul Arturo Sarukhan) and this.
In the current case, the SPLC is trying to conflate Levy's efforts with violent attacks in that county, both reported and simply alleged. For instance:
As misguided young men have engaged in violent attacks on Latino immigrants in Suffolk County, N.Y., some local politicians on the sidelines have been playing the role of cheerleaders. Far from acting as peacemakers, they have fed the atmosphere of hostility with rhetorical attacks of their own.
County Executive Steve Levy isn't the only public official engaging in the verbal immigrant-bashing, or the most extreme. But he is the highest-ranking, and since he was elected to his first term in November 2003 after promising a crackdown on illegal immigrants, Levy has been acting like the enabler-in-chief.
Levy has, of course, made clear that he does not in any way condone violent actions and the like. In case there was even one person who takes the SPLC seriously, they should compare what they say to the facts of the matter. Note also that they sink even lower by claiming that a group he co-founded "promotes immigrant-cleansing ordinances". Even some in the MSM seem to be catching on to the SPLC's self-interested hyperbole.
On another page of their report, they mix reported and alleged crimes in with non-criminal acts such as attempts to pass laws or resolutions encouraging the INS to take actions. Note also that the SPLC admits that some of those involved in attacks on Hispanics were black, and they also include this example of the elites making things difficult for the non-elites:
Latino immigrants may find work in Suffolk County's rich seaside communities, but they live in the more affordable inland towns, alongside middle- and working-class American families who are more likely to view the brown-skinned newcomers as competitors for jobs than hired help.
That doesn't excuse race-based attacks, but it does point the blame at those who are ultimately responsible for the situation.
While editing for the SPLC's report is attributed to Mark Potok, they also include this:
Hagedorn was started by the founder of Miracle Gro, but more importantly it would be interestiing to know what role the Obama administration-linked CAP played in the report.
Napolitano immigration meeting: you weren't represented (vast # of loose borders groups, Obama/Janet anti-287g) - 08/20/09
Earlier today, Janet Napolitano of the Department of Homeland Security held a closed-door meeting with a group of what she calls "stakeholders" (dhs.gov/ynews/releases/pr_1250792978709.shtm) but was actually a vast pantheon (see below) of far-left, racial power, corrupt business, and in general loose borders groups all of which want some form of comprehensive immigration reform, aka amnesty. There were at least 98 participants in the meeting, and none of them represent your interests or the interests of the great majority of American citizens. Why exactly they'd hold the meeting isn't clear; aside from guest workers and minor details they're all pretty much on the same page. Perhaps it was a strategy session to see how they could fool as many people as possible whenever they decide to push for amnesty.
The President said specifically that when it comes to the local police charged with enforcing federal immigration law under 287(g) agreements that he wants these local law enforcement agencies held accountable.
Noorani’s other question concerned the 287g program, which gives local law enforcement the authority to enforce immigration law. Noorani asked Napolitano to revoke the authority of agencies who have clearly violated the spirit of the agreement, and that the immigration reform community looked forward to seeing that happen. Napolitano responded, “Me, too.”
Other statements from those attending the meeting are here. Here's the intro to the DHS's press release:
"Today’s meeting on comprehensive immigration reform was an important opportunity to hear from stakeholders and build on the significant time I’ve spent on the Hill meeting with members of Congress on this critical subject. I look forward to working with President Obama, my colleagues in Congress and representatives from law enforcement, business, labor organizations, the interfaith community, advocacy groups and others as we work on this important issue.”
UPDATE: Griswold of CATO weighs in with a slab of Policy-As-Highschool (cato-at-liberty.org/2009/08/21/the-president-drops-by-to-tout-immigration-reform). After Napolitano gave her "opening remarks we broke up into smaller roundtable discussions of about 15 people each moderated by DHS officials". They then reconvened and Napolitano discussed what they'd learned. Then, Obama entered the building and made his speech "about 20 feet from where I was sitting". Griswold also refers to himself as a "small fish"; he's much too modest since he was some kind of inspiration for Bush's 2004 anti- and un-American guest workers plan.
And, there are so many groups that I've split the list into two parts. The religious, union, city/police, and miscellaneous groups are here. The following has the major groups, the business groups, and the single libertarian:
George Soros has contributed $5 million to the group Health Care For America Now (healthcareforamericanow.org) so that they can push Obamacare. That's dwarfed by the $35 million he's giving to help/"help" children in New York (in partnership with the federal government, ). As discussed here, HCAN is considered a bit on the wimpy side by the far-left, such as Jane Hamsher. That's despite HCAN including some true "liberal" stalwarts. Their steering committee includes the following:
* AFL CIO
* American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME)
* Campaign for Americas Future
* Center for American Progress Action Fund
* Campaign for Community Change (part of Center for Community Change)
* National Council of La Raza
* National Education Association
* Service Employees International Union
* United Food and Commercial Workers(UFCW)
Other members include: League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), National Abortion Federation (abortion doctors association), National Korean American Service and Education Consortium (NAKASEC), Brave New Films, Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), Gamaliel, Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, Rock the Vote, USPIRG, MDI Imported Car Service of Maine (?!?), and the YWCA.
 By giving the state of New York $35 million, Soros will trigger matching federal funds - from the stimulus - of $140 million (link):
Soros' gift and the matching government funds will provide 850,000 children currently receiving public assistance and food stamps in New York State with $200 each for back-to-school supplies and other necessities... Soros emphasized the need to give the children a grant with "no strings attached," even if it does not guarantee the money is used as intended.
Probably only a small portion will go towards back-to-school supplies.
CAP promotes benefits of states, politicians profiting from illegal immigration (Census, Andrea Nill) - 08/10/09
Andrea Nill of the Center for American Progress offers "Why Counting Undocumented Immigrants In The 2010 Census Counts For A Lot" (wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2009/08/10/immigration-census-bureau), a through-the-looking-glass post listing all the wonderful ways that states and localities can make out like bandits from counting illegal aliens in the Census and using their population in apportioning Congressional representation:
...the census serves many other purposes, namely the allocation of scarce federal resources for states and localities. Census data is used to distribute federal funding and Community Development Block Grants that benefit all residents. In a recently released report, the Drum Major Institute (DMI) shows that not counting undocumented immigrants would lead to inaccurate demographic information and result in costly mistakes in infrastructure, education, and healthcare planning...
David Cutler of Harvard keeps lying about who's covered under universal healthcare (Melinda Beeuwkes Buntin, CAP) - 06/24/09
Professor David Cutler of Harvard University and Melinda Beeuwkes Buntin of the Rand Corporation offer a report entitled "The Two Trillion Dollar Solution/Saving Money by Modernizing the Health Care System" (published by the Center for American Progress, americanprogress.org/issues/2009/06/2trillion_solution.html). It contains a major lie, and one that Cutler has engaged in before:
The fundamental challenge in health reform is to reduce the growth rate of health care costs. If annual cost increases can be lowered, then workers’ incomes will increase, labor market distortions will decline, and government budgets will move closer to balance. If we cannot “bend the curve” of increasing health care costs, then we will not be able to afford our current commitments to Medicare, Medicaid, and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, let alone the cost of covering the 45 million uninsured Americans.
In fact, according the the Census Bureau, there are only about 36 million uninsured Americans. There are almost 10 million additional people living in the U.S. who are uninsured, but who are foreign citizens. Many are legal immigrants, but millions are illegal aliens. It's beyond intellectually dishonest to call those 10 million people "Americans", but that's something that Cutler has done before. See the link for my attempts to contact him regarding this; I never received a reply.
If Cutler can't even be honest about 10 million people, what else is he being dishonest about?
Casey Sanchez/SPLC, Frank Sharry, Andrea Nill/CAP smear FAIR over non-existent connection (Dave Bennion) - 06/17/09
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) has launched its most irresponsible attack to date against the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR). The SPLC claims that Shawna Forde, the alleged killer of a little girl and her father during an Arizona home invasion, had ties to FAIR. Although no association exists -- or ever has -- between Ms. Forde and FAIR, the SPLC and organizations advocating mass amnesty and open borders have used this tragedy to fuel their on-going smear campaign against FAIR and other immigration policy organizations in order to suppress free and open debate about immigration policy in the United States... FAIR has no association with Shawna Forde. "Ms. Forde is not and never was an employee, member, activist, or donor of FAIR and most certainly has never been authorized to speak on behalf of our organization," stated Dan Stein, president of FAIR. "Ms. Forde misrepresented herself as a spokesperson for FAIR in a 2006 appearance on KYVE-TV in Yakima, Washington, and the producers of the program were remiss in failing to authenticate her false claims."
The SPLC report from Casey Sanchez is at . It was updated after it was originally posted and they acknowledge the above press release; there may or may not have been other changes. In its current form, the SPLC post doesn't claim that she was a member, only that she represented herself as a member and so on. At the very least, the SPLC post is an example of incredibly bad journalism:
Contacted by Hatewatch, Enrique Cerna, the host of the show and an executive producer, said it’s difficult to remember all the production details of a segment produced three years ago. Still, he said his producers had contacted FAIR, asking for a representative to appear on the show. That representative cancelled at the last minute and was replaced by Forde, who identified herself as a FAIR official. “We wouldn’t have identified her with that organization if she hadn’t said she was speaking on their behalf,” said Cerna.
Obviously, Cerna should have verified with FAIR that she was able to speak on their behalf rather than simply taking her word for it.
Shawna Forde, arrested as a suspect in a deadly home invasion in Arizona, has ties to the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), an anti-immigrant group classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). Hat tip to http://TonyHerrera.com for finding this 2006 video.
She has no ties; Sharry is lying.
The question that remains is whether there is the political will, especially in tough economic times, to move a reform package. Yet as (John Podesta) stated at yesterday's event, "we need solutions that restore the rule of law while aiding our economy by making taxpayers of all immigrants. So, to those opponents of reform we say this - immigration reform and economic recovery are not at odds with each other, but rather go hand in hand."
CAP is still the "think tank that can't think straight". Podesta didn't provide any sort of counter-argument, he just repeated what his group and others have said before. Clearly, the various problems CAP has - constantly issuing misleading statements and faulty studies and engaging in various logical fallacies - starts at the top.
Moreover, Podesta has no concern for American workers. Any form of legalization would swamp the workforce with millions of newly-legalized workers who would compete for jobs with Americans. And, that impact wouldn't just be on low-wage, low-skilled American workers but would also reach up into the middle class.
For instance, there are tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens who are underemployed: some might be nurses working as maids, others might be teachers working as nannies, and so on. Those illegal aliens are prevented from pursuing their chosen professions due to their status.
A legalization program would make it possible for those former illegal aliens to compete with American workers in their chosen professions. The former illegal alien nurse who's working as a maid would compete with American nurses; the former illegal alien teacher who's working as a nanny would compete with American teachers, and so on. And, that will have the impact of lowering wages not just for low-skilled jobs but for higher-skilled jobs.
Obviously, Podesta and CAP don't care.
"Reform Immigration For America": business, labor, CAP, NCLR, CHIRLA begin new push; summit, townhall meeting; John Quigley - 06/01/09
A new group called "Reform Immigration For America" recently launched in order to push for comprehensive immigration reform, aka amnesty. They're a coalition of business, labor, and far-left/racial power groups; see their slick site here: reformimmigrationforamerica.org.
One of the games that illegal immigration supporters like to play is to pretend that comprehensive immigration reform isn't amnesty; they use a variety of misleading euphemisms, such as "earned legalization" and so on. But, sometimes the mask slips, as it did with Angela Kelley of the Center for American Progress. Referring to the recent Washington Post/ABC News poll, she says (americanprogress.org/issues/2009/05/immigration_friends.html):
In fact, in the poll a majority of Democrats, Republicans, Independents, moderates, and conservatives supported an Amnesty Program. "Seven in 10 liberals and 68 percent of Democrats support an amnesty program. But so do majorities of Republicans and independents (59 percent in both cases), moderates (63 percent) and conservatives (56 percent) alike."
On immigration, while support for a path to citizenship is up, interest in greater border control remains high and strong. Seventy-four percent say the United States is not doing enough to keep illegal immigrants out of the country; 59 percent feel "strongly" about it.
In fact, as detailed at the discussion of the poll, it doesn't mention a "path to citizenship" at all; legalization doesn't necessarily imply that all those legalized would be able to become citizens.
Obama immigration budget: does a McCain: border security, then amnesty; fulfills promise to Mexican government; worried about *southbound* flows - 05/06/09
Remember how when John McCain used the cheap, misleading tactic of talking about how he wanted to "secure the border first" and then use that to push for amnesty, and Obama supporters lied and said he didn't support comprehensive immigration reform anymore? Well, now Barack Obama wants to secure the border first and then use that to push for amnesty. Somehow it's different this time.
From "Obama budget puts security first at the border/He'll ask Congress to help curb the flow of arms to Mexico before seeking any immigration reform" (by Anna Gorman and Peter Nicholas of the Los Angeles Times; link):
President Obama will ask Congress for $27 billion for border and transportation security in the next budget year, fulfilling a promise to the Mexican government to battle the southbound flow of illegal weapons and setting the stage for immigration reform by first addressing enforcement, administration officials said Tuesday.
While some of what he proposes might do something about the northbound flow, and there's no statement from Obama being as upfront as the LAT is, that's a good reminder of who and what are really important to the elites.
Rather than emphasizing fence construction, the budget concentrates on fighting drug smuggling, increasing funding for the Transportation Security Administration as well as:
...[doubling DHS] funding to nearly $47 million to combat southbound firearms and currency smuggling, and adds more than 100 Border Patrol agents and Customs and Border Protection officers... Among the immigration enforcement priorities, the budget increases funding by 30% to nearly $200 million to enable the Department of Homeland Security to hire 80 new people to identify criminal immigrants in the jails and prisons for deportation... Obama also wants to spend $112 million, a 12% increase, to make E-Verify, an employment verification program, more reliable and to get more employers to use it.
The rest of the article consists of Gorman and Nicholas blueskying for the administration:
In devoting more money to security and enforcement, Obama may be creating some political space needed to revamp the immigration system. The president risks alienating many conservatives if he doesn't emphasize strong border and immigration enforcement before taking action on a reform package that would create a path to legalization for an estimated 12 million illegal immigrants... "If the American people don't feel like you can secure the borders," Obama said during a prime-time news conference last week, "then it's hard to strike a deal that would get people out of the shadows and on a pathway to citizenship who are already here, because the attitude of the average American is going to be, 'Well, you're just going to have hundreds of thousands of more coming in each year.' " ...The emphasis on border security isn't a surprising first step by the administration, said Angela Kelley, vice president for immigration policy at the Center for American Progress, a Washington-based think tank. ..."It's a no-brainer that he is going to want to spend a lot of resources and build muscle at the border," she said... [But, the] second chapter better be looking to Congress and being in the driver's seat, both publicly and behind closed doors, driving a legislative package successfully."
ThinkProgress - the very low-wattage blog run by the Obama-linked Center for American Progress - has, of course, been strongly pro-Obama since he won the election. However, the post "Obama: Stimulus transportation projects ‘under budget,’ ‘ahead of schedule’"  by Faiz Shakir is more like a press release or something you might find on Page D-8 of an 70s-era copy of Pravda or in 1984:
Today, President Obama and Vice President Biden will appear at the Transportation Department along with Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood to celebrate the 2,000th transportation project funded by the stimulus package. “Just 41 days ago we announced funding for the first transportation project,” Obama said, according to his prepared remarks. “I am proud to utter the two rarest phrases in the English language — projects are being approved ahead of schedule, and they are coming in under budget.” Administration officials say that billions in road and bridge money is going “farther” and being used “faster” than expected.
At least they didn't include anything in there about shoelace production being up 44% this quarter or about the wheat harvest exceeding the five-year plan.
While the "World's Smallest Political Quiz" (hint: that's a satire of it at the link) remains the gold standard for deceptive quizzes, CAP comes close.
I alternated between trying to see how "badly" I could do and trying to see how quickly I could click through all forty screens in order to get it over with. There are four of the questions below. The only question left is whether CAP is truly unable to think things through and is completely simplistic, or whether they're just playing a game.
2. Government has a responsibility to provide financial support for the poor, the sick, and the elderly.Every one of those could result in a long essay detailing all the nuances involved and pointing out all the problems with CAP's presumed position. Unfortunately, there isn't enough time in the day.
19. Free trade is good for America because it creates new markets for our goods and services and lowers costs for consumers.
25. America has taken too large a role in solving the world's problems and should focus more at home.
34. Immigrants today are a burden on our country because they take our jobs and abuse government benefits.
back there in the 1980s at least we knew that our president was born in the United States
The ThinkProgress blog - run by the Barack Obama-linked Center for American Progress then lied about what he said, uploading a video with that quote under the false title "Cliff Kincaid Says President Obama Not Born in US" (link).
Obviously, saying we don't know where Obama was really born and saying that he wasn't born in the U.S. are too very different things. This shouldn't come as much of a surprise: both ThinkProgress and CAP frequently engage in sloppy thinking, logical fallacies, intellectual dishonesty, and so on. Sometimes, as in the current case, they just make things up.
Note that the Think Progress post with the video is entitled "CPAC audience roars with applause when speaker suggests Obama wasn’t born in U.S." (thinkprogress.org/2009/02/26/kincaid-obama-certificate), which is a related lie: Kincaid didn't suggest where Obama was born, only that we don't know.
See my attached video reply, which also contains a summary of the Obama citizenship issue showing that no definitive proof of where Obama was born has yet been provided.