Daniel Weintraub's Sacramento cocoon

You have to give CalInsider some slight credit. Unlike many other California newspaper columnists, he doesn't support open borders. However, he also doesn't like the Minuteman project. See "Governor misses the mark on illegal immigration":
Schwarzenegger need not apologize for taking [illegal immigration] on. But as an immigrant himself, this governor was perfectly positioned to elevate the discussion in a way that did not associate his office with the bigots who often travel the same road.

[...Arnold complains about the anti-American KRCA billboard...]

That's when Schwarzenegger went out of his way to endorse the Minutemen, a group of activists - some armed - who have taken to patrolling the borders themselves out of frustration with illegal immigration. President Bush condemned them as vigilantes. The governor embraced them...

As an immigrant, this governor has the chance to lay out a passionate case for legal immigration and all the dynamism it has brought this country, while arguing in a civil and reasoned way for stricter enforcement of the borders and for stronger sanctions against employers who hire illegal workers. Illegal immigrants are breaking the law, cutting in line ahead of people who have waited, sometimes years, for a chance to come here legally. And illegal immigrants, most of whom arrive with few skills, bid down the wages at the bottom of the economic ladder, forcing the poor to get by with less.

But instead of making those points in a way that could have widespread appeal, even among recent immigrants, Schwarzenegger has thrown in with the worst elements of the anti-immigration movement, lending them his credibility rather than merely citing them as yet another unfortunate manifestation of the federal government's failure to deal with the issue...
Weintraub makes some good points in the penultimate paragraph. However, it's in the others that he shows that he's quite a bit out of touch. And, I don't believe he heard the original broadcast on KFI or read the transcript. Apparently he missed Arnold's happy happy feel good rhetoric, like this: "And like I said, it is divisive, and it's the last thing we need in Los Angeles. I think it should be a city where people live together, people of different backgrounds and cultures, immigrants, and everyone should work together, live together and live in peace..." Awww. Even Sally Struthers would probably have been moved.

As for the MMP, there were no doubt some yahoos among the volunteers. However, there's nothing wrong, illegal, or immoral with the MMP as designed. Like almost all the other articles on Arnold's recent remarks, he also seems to want to establish Bush as a standard on immigration matters. Yet, the great majority of Americans oppose Bush's stance on immigration, so if he's a standard it would be among the gated compound branch of the Republican party. The MMP, to their great credit, had the balls to stand up to the establishment, of which Weintraub, Bush, and the SacBee are definitely a part.

And, while there might have been a hitch or two, it mostly went as planned. It also had the fortunate side effect of further discrediting the ACLU and many members of the MSM. Now we know all about, for just one instance, Tim Gaynor of Reuters. And yes, there might have been a few bad apples among the members of the MMP, but not only were they not able to do anything bad, if they'd done anything it would have been against the rules of the project.

Weintraub should stick with pushing the good parts of his article and leave the piling on to the other members of the MSM.

And, you let me know when - for just one of the many examples I could provide - the SacBee covers the story "California legislators ask Mexican Senate to intervene [in driver's licenses for illegal aliens]", which originated right in Weintraub's back yard. Imagine that: supposedly American legislators pimping the U.S. to a foreign government and trying to encourage that foreign government to meddle in our laws. Where was the SacBee on that story? Answer: nowhere to be found.


Thank God for the Minutemen and thank God for Arnold! There are still some conservatives in the GOP.
Little did I know when I voted for Bush in 04 that he was a closet liberal? I thought he wanted to win the War on Terror. Not join up with the ACLU (vigilantes indeed) and surrender to Al Queda.

Thank God for the Minutemen and thank God for Arnold! There are still some conservatives in the GOP.
Little did I know when I voted for Bush in 04 that he was a closet liberal? I thought he wanted to win the War on Terror. Not join up with the ACLU (vigilantes indeed) and surrender to Al Queda.

Rod Stanton


What exactly is that, anyway? Are vicious Hispanic gangs a form of "dynamism"? How about failure to graduate from high school en masse -- is that also a form of "dynamism"? Maybe the disturbing ghettoization of large parts of California? (Or is that 'barrioization'?)

Whatever it is, or however you or he chooses to define it, I would still describe this sort of rhetoric as meaningless blah blah cliche spouting of the type that is seen all too often, and all too often alone (as here) makes up pretty much the entire pro-immigration argument.

A bigger problem is democracy, or the lack of democratic choice on this. Has any other single factor behind the changes in California, especially southern California, that have occurred over the last few decades been more important than immigration, legal and illegal? I cannot think of one. Crime, traffic, schools, housing, sprawl -- you name it, almost every aspect of life, and every corner and community in California, has been in some way affected. I'm talking here not only about the (largely unwanted) population growth which is being driven almost entirely by immigration, but also about the social consequences that come about because of who and what most of these immigrants are -- mostly uneducated, unskilled people who do not speak English.

In short, for an increasing number home does not really feel like home anymore.

All of this dramatic change has occurred without a single vote on it ever being cast.

Which hardly seems like real democracy to me, as I cannot imagine anything more important than the community around me.

And I think it is dishonest to use such cliches, or to attempt to explain away all of this as a tradeoff for "dynamism", when people were never given a choice about whether they wanted to import this "dynamism" or not.