Monday, July 29, 2019

On Exile



Given the state of education in America these days, it’s likely that precious few students today have ever read the once-classic story, “The Man Without A Country” – therefore most people today would be surprised to learn that “exile” was once a serious part of American law.  The assumption was, “If you can’t live with our society, live without it”.  The early American colonists relied on “banishment” as a legal punishment for civil or religious infractions.  For example, Roger Williams was banished from the Massachusetts Bay colony in 1635 for complaining about the colonists’ practice of stealing land from the local Indians.  Cast out, Williams went to the Indians and took care to buy land from them, on which he founded the colony of Rhode Island.  

As I recall, the laws concerning application of that particular sentence are still on the books, and I think it’s time we considered them again.

At present, only non-citizens can be deported from the US.  Citizens can be exiled only for engaging in war or espionage against the US – in other words, treason.  Technically, “engaging in private diplomacy” may get you exiled and stripped of US citizenship, though that has never been invoked.  Exile or “banishment” from a state is a little more complicated.  Sixteen states have constitutional provisions prohibiting banishment, and others have banned the practice through appeals courts decisions, on the grounds that citizens have a right to live where they choose.  It remains on the books in a handful of states, and Maryland prescribes it as punishment for “corruption”, but such sentences are usually overturned on appeal. 

Still, a lot of prosecutors are arguing for a restoration of the practice – among other things, noting that federal courts already have a form of voluntary exile as part of the plea-agreement system.  In effect, the crook is given a suspended sentence so long as s/he stays out of the country for a particular number of years – but if s/he returns before then, the axe drops.  It’s generally assumed that banishment can’t be open-ended but must have a term-limit – generally the same length of time that the convicted would otherwise spend in prison.
         
Whether or not people have a right to live wherever they want to – and whole countries, as well as states and cities might argue with that – not even the ACLU can claim that banishment/exile is either unusual or more cruel than locking people up in prison.  The legal justification for incarceration, besides keeping proven criminals away from the rest of society, is to “rehabilitate” them.  This is why prisons in the US offer all sorts of educational programs to inmates, not to mention the reliable chaplains.  This hasn’t proved nearly as useful as the legal theorists hoped;  all too often prisoners pick up criminal tactics and contacts in prison – not to mention a taste for Jihadist terrorism – which they put to bad use when they’re released.  And never mind the sheer cost of keeping such a large portion of our population in prison.  It would be cheaper, as well as more merciful, to banish/deport/exile our convicted felons – citizens or not – to whatever other country will have them, and let them work out their own rehabilitation on their own time and at their own expense. 

Who knows?  The exiles might actually do a decent job of it.  Historically, gangs of exiles, thrown out on their own resources, have founded not only successful colonies – like Rhode Island – but successful whole countries, such as the USA, Australia, and ancient Rome.  When considering mass rehabilitation, one could do a lot worse.

So yes, it’s time to seriously consider widening the laws on exile – under any name.

--Leslie <;)))>< 


Sunday, July 14, 2019

Tales From The Border



--Leslie <;)))><  )O(


There’s a tale that Rasty’s been telling for the past week or so, about a time some ten years ago that he stopped at a border-town restaurant, where the border patrol troops tended also tended to show up.  While he ate lunch he overheard a group of them bragging about the illegal border-crossers they’d arrested in the past few days.  They got into one case in particular, and he realized they were talking about having gang-raped a 12-year-old Mexican girl.  They seemed to think that this was one of the perks of the job.  He got out of there soon, and never afterward would trust an ICE-man.

What’s particularly interesting about this is a tale that I heard at nearly the same time.  ‘Twas about ten or twelve years ago, when I was in southern Cal for a large Sci-Fi convention (I think it was a LosCon, but don’t quote me).  One of the filk-fans took me out for dinner at what he called “an authentic Mexican restaurant;  you can tell by the amount of sea-food”.  We got seats, ordered some authentic Mexican sea-food, and had settled into eating it when we noticed a bunch of authentic Mexicans seated at a table in the corner near us, who were having a lively conversation over dinner and pitchers of Sangria and beer.  My dinner companion was listening, and his expression was growing grim.  Finally he leaned over the table and quietly asked me: “How fast can you finish?”  I replied, “As soon as we can get a doggy-bag”.  He signaled for the waitress, we got the doggy-bag and packed up, he paid, and we quietly got out of there.  Once we were several yards from the door, I asked him what that was all about, and he explained that despite his Anglo looks, he spoke and understood fluent Spanish, and he’d overheard what those jolly fellows were talking about.

It seems they were successful Coyotes, who were celebrating having escorted a couple of large convoys across the border, for considerable money. The one whom the others were admiring was bragging about his favorite technique;  he’d bought a 12-year-old girl in Guadalajara, “cleaned her up”, bought her some sexy clothes, trained her carefully – and when he got her to the border, he’d handed her over to “maybe half a dozen” ICE-men to keep them distracted while he sneaked the rest of the convoy past them.  He simply dumped the girl, left her with the border troops, when his convoy was safely past.  As he finished his tale, his fellow Coyotes began talking about the price of children of different ages in particular Mexican towns.  At that point my dinner companion decided to get the hell out of that restaurant. On hearing that tale, I decided that Coyotes were the scum of the Earth.

Another tale I heard from an old friend who’s been dead for some half a dozen years now.  He’d been living with the Tohono O’Odam tribesfolk down near the Arizona-Mexico border, and they’d asked him to help them with their tribal border-watch problem.  It seems that the border of the tribal lands extends a few miles into Mexico proper, and the Coyotes had taken it into their heads that this would be an easier place to cross than further west, at the federal border.  As they scampered across the Indian lands, the Coyotes would also help themselves to whatever they found on the way: houses and their contents, livestock, unlucky women they encountered, and the occasional tribal policemen.  The US border patrol couldn’t legally work this far south of the US border, but the tribal militia could.  Therefore a rotating crew of tribal ranchers went out and patrolled the tribal border themselves, on horseback, with dogs and CB radios. 

They caught illegal crossers every week, at least.  Among them were a disturbing number of men who didn’t speak Spanish, had very long beards, and carried pages from the Koran in their pockets.  When stopped, the “migrants” seemed oddly fearful of the tribesmen, as if they’d never met real Indians before.  Those who threatened to fight were shot, usually in the leg, unless they tried to fight further.  Those who tried to run had the dogs set on them until they stopped running.  The rest were cuffed with zip-ties and then marched across the Tohono O’odam lands to the US border, where the patrol would call the local ICE office and then wait for the troops to come pick up the illegals.  This tended to be frustrating, since the ICE-men would usually keep the migrants for a few days and then let them loose – on the Mexican side of the border, from which they would soon enough come back again.  Just what the Indians did with their frustration my friend never said, but I did note a few years later that the majority of “migrant” convoys – and drug-smugglers – had stopped trying to cross through the Tohono O’odam lands.

Nonetheless, an average of half a million “migrants” have been coming across our border every year, for the past 20 years and more.      

For the past year, I’ve been hearing different tales from all along the border – usually second-hand, via the Internet, and contradictory.  What you can find from the Internet is that a group called Pueblos Sin Fronteras organized, funded, guided and supported the “migrant caravan” starting in Guatemala, marching and driving through Honduras, El Salvador, and finally Mexico, intending to push into the US on the “asylum” excuse.  A bit more searching shows that Pueblos Sin Fronteras gets its considerable funding from rich Democrats, particularly George Soros, all of whom support the Globalist policy.  It’s obvious that the purpose of this campaign is to flood the US border patrol, overwhelm the immigration system, and eventually get open borders all through North America.  The migrants in the first caravan were offered jobs and housing in Mexico, but didn’t take the offer.  They made it clear that their purpose was not to get away from drug-cartels but to get into Goody-land and make money – bigger money than they could get in Mexico.  So they got up to the US border, started their “asylum” claims, and also stole across the border every chance they could get.  Of course it did overwhelm the immigration system, which meant the processing of migrants slowed to a crawl. 

Part of the problem was that the “migrants” had brought a lot of children with them, and existing law forbids putting children in adult jails, with adult prisoners.  So, where were the kids supposed to go?  They’re sent to Department of Health and Human Services centers, and from there to the state Child Protective Services, which don’t have anywhere near the resources to care for thousands of kids.  As for handing the children back to their relatives, the problem there is finding the relatives – and making certain that they really are relatives.  Once turned away, a lot of those adult migrants tend to disappear.  Where do they go?  A few of them have decided, on second thought, to take Mexico’s offer – without the children.  Still others sneak across the US border, likewise without the children.  This leaves the kids stuck in whatever housing the overwhelmed HHS or local CPS can find for them.  As of June 15, there were roughly 12,000 kids spread among 100 HHS detention centers in 14 states, and there’s no available record of how many have been placed through CPS offices with sponsors or foster-families.  The kids go first through the central processing center in McAllen, Texas, where they can stay for no more than three days before being sent to another federal detention center or to a state holding center.

Democrat Congresscritters looking for dirt on Trump went first to the McAllen center, which was built during the Obama administration as cheaply as possible.  https://www.npr.org/2018/06/19/621065383/what-we-know-family-separation-and-zero-tolerance-at-the-border
   The Associated Press first labeled the chain-link cells as “cages”, and Democrat “investigators” have embellished the term.  The cells do indeed have concrete floors, and the furniture is minimal: foam mattress-pads for beds, cheap sleeping-bags or plastic thermal blankets for bedding, cheap folding tables and chairs.  The children usually get only one or two showers and clothes-launderings per stay, because they’re legally moved to another center within 72 hours.  These are facts well known – and published – by the DHHS.  https://www.factcheck.org/2018/06/qa-on-border-detention-of-children/ 

It’s when politicians and media “activists” get into the act that facts get muddled and stories get contradictory.  Various members of Congress, most noisily Alexandria Occasional-Cortex, made visits to the federal detention centers in Florida, Texas and Arizona, made several exciting claims of abuse, had some photos made of herself, yelled curses at the detention officials, and held a press conference denouncing Trump.  A group of Hispanic pastors, questioning her statements, went to the detention center themselves and came up with some different stories. https://www.unitedamericanews.com/articles/hispanic-pastors-visit-the-border-tell-a-very-different-story-than-aoc/ 

Most recently, Trump promised a round-up of illegal residents in the US, and about a dozen mayors and governors promised to obstruct any such efforts, which will be an interesting sight to see.  Trump’s easiest response would be to cut off all federal funds earmarked for those cities and states, which the federal-executive bureaucracy could easily do.  Also, the various federal police certainly know, already, with no help from the local police, where the particular illegals they want to pick up are located.  His actually doing that would be a show of muscle to the Democrats.  But in any case, the current state of immigration can’t go on.  The USA now has the third largest population in the world – behind China and India, but ahead of everyone else – including some 20 million “non citizens”. Our physical, social and economic resources are straining at the seams, and we simply can’t take in any more population, especially ‘migrants” with no loyalty to our laws or culture or the people here already.  Despite the insistence of the Progressive-wing Democrats, unlimited immigration is not a blessing;  just ask any – heh! – Native American.  We have to close the border, declare a ten-year moratorium on all immigration, re-route those “asylum” seekers to Argentina, or Chile, which are willing to take them in, and start seriously deporting the “undocumented” migrants here already.  It’s either that or face social and economic collapse, and the Progressive/Liberal Democrats will never accept it.

What worries me most is the lengths the US’s political Left will go to in order to support their policy, their agenda, and their vision of what the country is really like.  In my years’ experience working for a labor union newspaper, I learned a bit about Photographic Analysis.  I also saw plenty of examples of “Reichstag”, “False Flag” and “Potemkin village” political campaigns, and I’ve been seeing a lot more of them in the media lately.


Look carefully at all of them, including on the previous and following pages.  Note the details.

Also remember two facts about the Rio Grande:  it flows from west to east, and for most of its slow and narrow and meandering length it’s no more than three feet deep. West of Texas, migrants don’t swim or raft across the river, but wade.  Since the border patrol is stretched thin, illegal migrants have a very good chance of getting into the US without being noticed – and processed, and registered, at all. Why cross at Texas, then?  Because that’s the quickest way to the central processing center at McAllen and a good chance of acceptance into the US.  The drawback is the 50% possibility of being rejected and sent back to Mexico.  For videos of Texas crossings, Google “video crossing the rio grande”.     

According to CNN, the family tried to cross at Brownsville, Texas, because they were tired of waiting in Mexico to be processed.  Had they bothered to go a hundred miles west, they could have walked safely across the river.

Note the details in the pictures.  The tops of the heads of the man and child are at the same level, but the child’s feet are down by the man’s hip;  is that really a 23-month-old child, or closer to thee or even four years old?  Note the angle of the sunlight and the angle of the shadows on the water and estimate the time of day that those pictures were taken.  Note the height of the reeds and branches sticking out of the water, and calculate just how deep the water is.  Note the thickness of the reeds and the solidity of the riverbank where the migrants’ heads are pointed;  that’s solid ground, as confirmed by the number of beer-cans lying in the reeds.  Look at pictures taken from different angles and compare them.  Note the size and direction of the wavelets on the surface of the water and calculate how strong the current of the water is.  Is that current strong enough to sweep a grown man off his feet?  Note the blue “floaty-noodle” and the wooden branch under the bodies, that were used as a small raft to float them.  Notice the small rowboat nearby, visible only at a particular angle.  Note that in two of the pictures the boat and the nearby reeds have changed position.  Especially note the one photo which shows the heads of the pair turned so that their right ears are visible.  That means that, in that photo at least, their faces are not in the water.              

Judging from what we see in the photos we have to ask, are those bodies really dead?  If so, did they die where we see them lying or were they moved into that spot?  Could they possibly have been floated there by the current, or did someone tow them into position and arrange the bodies for maximum effect?  What was that small boat doing there? Note which of those photos was chosen by the media (CNN first) to be sent around the Internet to rake in pity and even win a comment from the Pope?  Well, it didn’t show right ears or the boat. 

What, do I think that respectable news companies or compassionate political activists would actually lie about the drowning of a poor father and child, or stage photos, or manipulate bodies for dramatic effect?

Well, it’s not as if we haven’t seen this sort of thing done before, is it?

--Leslie <;)))><