Solve for the “not a detention center” equilibrium

A spokesman for Southwest Key, Jeff Eller, said on Sunday it could not legally require children to stay on the premises if they sought to leave, and that “from time to time” children had left several of its 27 shelters for immigrant children.

“We are not a detention center,” Mr. Eller said in a statement. “We talk to them and try to get them to stay. If they leave the property, we call law enforcement.”

Federal officials echoed that position, saying they could not stop a child who attempted to leave. The officials did not respond to a question about how many children had walked away from migrant centers nationwide.

Here is the rest of the NYT article, it has further points of interest.


'saying they could not stop a child who attempted to leave'

But being able to detain them the second they stepped off the premises? No problem - for example, CPS would distinctly have the authority to put such children into an institutional setting immediately, based on the fact that such children were demonstrably not under their parent's care. Further, it is extremely hard to imagine that there is not at least a hint of formality of keeping track of who is in and who is not in a facility at any given time, thus providing the time to call CPS.

And while admitting that I basically never read anything from the NYT, it is even more extremely hard to believe that a 4 year old is just allowed to walk out the front door of a tender care facility whenever they want, and if that is actually the case, solve for the equilibrium of such happening in the U.S., where this system started 2 decades ago -

'In the United States, AMBER Alerts are distributed via commercial radio stations, Internet radio, satellite radio, television stations, and cable TV by the Emergency Alert System and NOAA Weather Radio (where they are termed "Child Abduction Emergency" or "Amber Alerts"). The alerts are also issued via e-mail, electronic traffic-condition signs, commercial electronic billboards, or through wireless device SMS text messages. AMBER Alert has also teamed up with Google, Bing, and Facebook to relay information regarding an AMBER Alert to an ever-growing demographic: AMBER Alerts are automatically displayed if citizens search or use map features on Google or Bing. With the Google Child Alert (also called Google AMBER Alert in some countries), citizens see an AMBER Alert if they search for related information in a particular location where a child has recently been abducted and an alert was issued. This is a component of the AMBER Alert system that is already active in the US (there are also developments in Europe). Those interested in subscribing to receive AMBER Alerts in their area via SMS messages can visit Wireless Amber Alerts, which are offered by law as free messages. In some states, the display scrollboards in front of lottery terminals are also used.'

"An AMBER Alert or a Child Abduction Emergency (SAME code: CAE) is a child abduction alert system. It originated in the United States in 1996."

That's literally the first line from the link above. So, Amber Alerts would not be applicable at all. This is a clear case of you cherry picking text to support your argument.

See below.

But my intent was to say that in the U.S., a governmental system has been in place for decades to protect children from harm. To say that the same government would just let a 4 year old, demonstrably without parents or a home in the U.S., walk out the door on their own is not actually imaginable. No question that my intent is not clear in this text '... and if that is actually the case, solve for the equilibrium of such happening in the U.S., where this system started 2 decades ago.' Not because of the system being used for tracking lost children, but because of the interconnected nature of a governmental framework designed to prevent harm to children.

The point was far from explicit, undoubtedly. It did not concern using Amber Alerts, it was about how all levels of American government seem concerned about children at a level that caused such an integrated system to be developed in the first place.

Amber alerts are for abductions, not kids deciding to wander off the premises: "To allow activations in the absence of significant information that an abduction has occurred could lead to abuse of the system and ultimately weaken its effectiveness."

if the parents do get deported, what are the alternatives for children and teenagers? there is a strong incentive to leave the place.

'Amber alerts are for abductions, not kids deciding to wander off the premises'

And when somebody notices a 4 year old missing from a tender care facility, they just shrug their shoulders and say 'who cares?'

And here is some not exactly current information concerning how the system is used - 'A Scripps Howard study of the 233 AMBER Alerts issued in the United States in 2004 found that most issued alerts did not meet the Department of Justice's criteria. Fully 50% (117 alerts) were categorized by the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children as being "family abductions", very often a parent involved in a custody dispute. There were 48 alerts for children who had not been abducted at all, but were lost, ran away, involved in family misunderstandings (for example, two instances where the child was with grandparents), or as the result of hoaxes. Another 23 alerts were issued in cases where police did not know the name of the allegedly abducted child, often as the result of misunderstandings by witnesses who reported an abduction.'

So you have to resort to misuse of a system designed specifically for child abductions to try to support your point (and the misuse is the failure to meet the stricter interpretation of what constitutes a "reasonable belief" at the time that an alleged abduction has occurred, but nonetheless the vast majority of cases were based on a claim of abduction).

The theory that underpins is the idea that these immigrants are flowing as a result of conscious policies by Mexico and California. The political parties are organizing according to militia warfare, including the chemical warfare in the form of meth distribution among the hispanics out here in California. If this view holds, then war doctrine applies and due process is out the window.

You decide, as I understand it the current mexican politicians are advocating for an organizing another mass flood of immigrants. Which brings up Illinois, which is also suffering forced migration, the result of deliberate policies.

Militia war, organized, weaponized.

But Donald Trump's wall is going to fix all of this, isn't it? He said so it must be true.

What? The cages are unlocked?


Come now, let us look at an official U.S. government provided picture -

Does that look like a cage? And that nicely uniformed person - does he look like a keeper (of whatever variety one wishes to use)?

Plus, it looks like those people inside the wire enclosure can enter another wire enclosure if they wish. Though whether they can push the button to exit at the actual door whenever they wish is harder to discern.

OK, who are we fooling (apart from those wishing to fool themselves) - of course they are cages, even in the pictures provided by a government agency in an attempt to put its best face forward. And pretty obviously, the cages are not unlocked.

What? The cages are unlocked?

I wonder if the NYT accepts gratuities from sex-traffickers? I mean, what great places to find extremely vulnerable children. "Hey, kid. I can take you to see your mom and dad, hop in."

You jest, but you have to love that the NYT has been reduced to insisting that whenever a 40-year-old man is found roaming near the border with a 7-year-old girl, and neither of them have ID, the only acceptable solution is to give them a taxpayer-funded private room together. To suggest otherwise is monstrous.

Dear God, do I love what the Trump era has done to that place.

To solve for the equilibrium first requires an understanding of the Trump administration's objective. Does anyone know the objective? Does Trump? Explanations have shifted so many times it's impossible to know at any given point in time. At times the objective seems to be to offend as many people as possible, not only Mexicans but Americans who don't care for Trump and even Europeans and others who don't care for Trump, no matter how cruel to those directly affected including children; the children are simply casualties of the Trump offensive against his enemies. Despots are familiar with this strategy; it's not healthy to be on the wrong side of the despot. My guess is that there is no well-defined objective, that immigration is just a political issue to be won or lost in the media cycle, like North Korea or trade. Chaos, in other words. I suppose chaos appeals to those who abhor complacency, preferring disruption to order and stability. That explanation might comfort those who fear that Trump is simply cruel, but I would suggest that chaos and cruelty are two sides of the same coin.

I believe reports that Trump thought he could make a division and then win the culture war, like he did when he made his base hate football.

It turns out Americans are more protective of small children than they are of 240 pound football players.

All you people needed to do was not go nuts. And, you couldn't.

I didn't need Trump to get me to stop watch on TV the NFL. Colin Kaepernick did that.

You are a lot smarter than me. What will be the benefit to all of we the people when the arrogant, mal-educated liberals win the culture wars? What are the end goals/objectives?

In other news, Maxine Waters is 24/7 feverishly toiling to re-elect the President.

I am not that smart. I tried to fix something and flooded the kitchen this morning. Twice.

But I'd guess that the political self-harm for supporters of family separation will be the lasting impact.

Rayward wrote:

Does anyone know the objective?

You really have to be willfully stupid to not understand the objectives.

The first objective of zero tolerance/ending "catch-and-release" is to make clear that the odds of getting into the country illegally are against you, so don't bother making the trip across Mexico in the first place. I mean, such a policy simple common sense if you think people shouldn't be able to walk across the border without a visa.

The second objective is part of the first one- drive the Left into an open call for not detaining the people at the border in the first place. You already have a court decree saying you can't detain the children. Now that Trump is allowing them to be detained together, the leftists are going to get a court order from somewhere that issues an injunction against detaining the parents and anyone travelling north with a child. This plays into Trump's objectives and the objectives of the people who voted for him- it makes the border wall more likely to be built and manned. Open borders and lack of border enforcement are political losers for the Democrats, but they don't seem to know it, or don't want to admit that Trump is smarter than they are in this particular issue.

Open borders are an obvious lie. No one who floats that canard should be taken seriously.

The previous status quo was anything but open.

Why would anybody want to illegally come into a country governed by and for anti-abortionists, climate change deniers, homophobes, Nazis, polluters, racists, two-gender extremists, fundamentalists, and Donald J. Trump?

If open borders are, in fact, tightly closed. Why are there 12 million illegal invaders in the USA?

And, yeaterday the president of Mexico said his government would defend peole's right to cross the soutrhern border into America.

From that quote, it sounds like a very small portion of the market prefers to decline the transaction, while from the broader reporting we understand there is a queue of customers waiting their turn to make the transaction. Taken together that sounds like an undersupply, and expanding the shelters to match demand will increase welfare.

OK, here are the two assumptions:
1. No law compels the children to remain.
2. Law enforcement is called should the children leave.

These seem obviously in contradiction.

Not necessarily a contradiction. Kind of the opposite of "You don't have to go home, but you can't stay here" except in this case, it's "You don't have to stay here, but you can't go home."

Whoever is really in charge of these facilities calls the local police (who don't run the facilities) who then probably put the kids into cps / foster care as unaccompanied minors. It's a huge mess, but not really surprising since there's no real system for keeping track of kids in these cases.

My naive understanding is that they cannot exercise force to hold the children, but a non-citizen child who decides to wander off into America would face other legal difficulties.

1. I am not clear on the flowchart. Is this sort of shelter the first place children are taken, or is it for after 20 days expire at a federal facility etc? Is it the path for all children or some children?

2. I am much more worried by the report that three month olds have been separated from their mothers.

Well, a 3-month-old won't even know the difference. Much worse for a one-year-old or, probably a two or three year old would be the worst

Ever cared for a three month old baby? Let us just say that the idea of a baby that young being mixed in with any group of children is not a good prospect - for example, a helpful 3 year old giving the baby a raisin when it cries. (And yes, I do know a case where a baby died from a similar case - it is not theoretical.)

A 3 month old is breastfeeding and deeply bonding with its mother. Who will feed the child? How much will it be left alone? How can it not feel deep and fundamental abandonment?

This. You havn't felt soul destroying torment until you've heard the sound of a three month old baby crying for it's mother.

Leaving that aside. It is illegal in many parts of the US for a child care worker to care for more than four infants under one year of age at once. Because infants that young need a lot of supervision, feeding, and holding. What do you think are the chances these places have enough child care workers to handle infants that young?

'You havn't felt soul destroying torment until you've heard the sound of a three month old baby crying for it's mother'

Let us not overdo this - one assume that most fathers and many grandparents have heard that sound when the mother is not around, for whatever reason. Showering, to be trivial, or is at a doctor's/dentist's/whatever office with the 3 month old baby's older sibling for an hour or two.

That the personnel at the facilities are not allowed to touch the children cannot be actually enforced at the tender care facilities either - there is no way to change a diaper otherwise.

That such policy is appalling is beyond question, and clearly exceeds the sorts of standards of human decency that Americans used to never question their own government would meet as the barest of minimums.

Nonetheless, babies cry, and those around them learn to deal with it (in part, admittedly, by telling themselves that babies get older as time passes).

Hearing an entire group of children wailing for their parents is what is unnatural, not hearing a baby (or several) cry.

The point about resources is completely correct, of course, regardless.

Don't discount this as a mother's response either. My girlfriend started sniffling immediately after hearing the story.

I am not - what I was pointing out is that a large number of people actually know what the crying of a baby separated from its mother sounds like, because they have heard it in their own lives, with their own (or close relatives/friends/etc.) children.

The comment about such crying is restricted to the crying itself, and not how it is caused.

Well, I mean, not the normal crying but the crying that starts if you don't comfort the baby after about 15 minutes. It sort of escalates to the point where it sounds like the sound of someone sobbing inconsolably that they are going to die alone, abandoned, and unloved because their parents hate them.
And it's probably worse if it's YOUR your than someone else's baby. But I think most people who hear that sound, despite having to tolerate it, probably feel a kind of innate urge to do *anything* that will make it stop. It's like nails on a chalkboard only 10 times worse.

'but the crying that starts if you don't comfort the baby after about 15 minutes'

3 months? After 15 minutes, I would generally expect the baby to be sleeping or on the verge of sleep, doing that hiccup thing, being completely worn out, if otherwise adequately cared for (clean diaper, recently fed, not sick, etc.)

I am not really arguing here, but will admit I was amazed at a 5 month old baby that was able to cry, non-stop, for a solid half hour while the mother was grocery shopping. I had no problems listening, but was amazed at the sheer stamina, obviously developed over months. This was a baby that absolutely did not accept separation (yes, closing the shower door caused crying according to the mother), and at that age, there is really nothing to be done about it. Still amazed me, and I have never seen another baby with such amazingly developed crying ability.

That the situation that a 3 month baby in a tender care facility is in is horrible is beyond any dispute. I am merely saying that babies do not possess a magic power, at least if one has enough experience with them.

'And it's probably worse if it's YOUR your than someone else's baby.'

Honestly? Not in my experience. But then, the knowledge of different types of crying is helpful to know what is going on.

'It's like nails on a chalkboard only 10 times worse.'

Or it is what a baby sounds like. We may have different experiences in this regard, or it is simply easier for me to tolerate. It definitely helps to know why a baby is crying, of course - but a note of pain is distinctive enough from the sort of crying I believe you mean that it is more than mere toleration to ignore the one, while responding to the other.

This is just anecdotes, of course, and personal experience.

Well, maybe people's tolerance for baby crying sounds differ.
Anyhow, enough people have trouble sleep training babies that I don't think I'm totally unique in regarding certain kinds of crying as absolutely intolerable, at least to the parent of said baby.
The sleep training manual essentially instructs you to let the baby cry itself to sleep and many people just can't stand to let their baby cry that long.

No problem - you might have guessed I am the oldest of a number of siblings by this point. And that I have spent a number of years taking care of babies/children that are not my own, along with my own children.

I have never read a sleep training manual, but had absolutely no problem setting a time before responding to the crying of a baby. At which point, you do need to respond - the baby is a person, after all, and you might have missed some reason for it crying too. Another reason to respond is essentially cynical, from one perspective - you do not want the baby to become well trained in crying.

This is getting to be a bit of a side track - my experiences are all based on being able to take full care of the baby and full awareness of its situation.

The situation of a baby in a tender care facility is completely different, and runs from bad to worse to awful to utterly inhumane.

It's a good thing important matters of national policy are being decided on how people feel when they hear babies cry.

Actually, it is a good thing.

If we literally don't care about the crying of the defenseless, then we have become the sort of people that Americans used to hold in utter contempt for their inhumanity.

Sadly, as Peterson tirelessly points out, you will always find people able to do the most contemptible acts of inhumanity at the bidding of a government.

But as an American, I still have faith that American policy is decided upon in the end by people who do feel something when babies cry.

I agree with you all. What a sh!tty mother.

Why the hell would you take your infant on a months-long trek of extreme uncertainty? If Central America is that bad, just sell the place to the billionaires and tell them to run it.

Is Paul Romer on this site? Paul, hello?

Because you are fleeing for your life? We ARE talking about asylum seekers here.

"There are gangs" and "my boyfriend beats me up" are a domestic law enforcement problem, not a "We Are The World" problem.

+1. Indeed. Gang violence and domestic violence are NOT grounds for international asylum.

I respect the open borders crowd a lot more if they were at least honest about this.

I agree too, but the issue at hand is whether you keep families together while you decide that (as was the previous policy) or you just f_ck with them to "reduce the incentive" for others.

Yeah, they should try and keep the families together, as far as practical, especially if it's young children. Treatment should be austere, but not abusive. We can all tell the difference, right?

I would prefer "detain together" as policy. But if it's a choice between "detain separately" and "release" then I'll take "detain separately".

I mean, sure, probably a lot of these people are just opportunists, but surely there are SOME who have legitimate fears of persecution and death.

If they were truly seeking asylum, then they were legally obligated to stop in Mexico and Mexico was legally obligated to take them.

The truth is that these people are economic migrants. And there's nothing immoral about that. But there is something immoral about lying about it.

+100. Nearly all of them are economic migrants.


Yes.... slightly less than 1% of the border crossers are indeed legitimate asylees. From the stats, IIRC for the central Americans:

500k illegal entries
300k detainees
80k asylum applications
5k asylees admitted

(NB ; only about 2-3k of those 5k asylees come from illegal entry; the rest are lawful entry or external application).

By the way, in other news today we learn that Trump offers to return children to parents if they leave immediately, but in the meantime he has the children get up in the morning and say the Pledge of Allegiance.

That seems fairly messed up. You ask them to pledge allegiance, while your whole focus is denying that very opportunity to them.

This has literally become a sick parody of American ideals.

"This has literally become a sick parody of American ideals."

The epitaph of this Administration.

To hell with your American ideals. There is zero consensus on them.

What do Trumpists put in place of values, aw-thor-i-tay?

'There is zero consensus on them.'

And to think that most Americans actually agree with the ideals expressed in these words - 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.'

Or these - 'We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.' After all, every single American president has sworn to uphold the American ideals contained in the Constitution.

A third of Americans agreed on the Declaration when it was written. Another third didn't care. A final third had moved or glumly accepted their fate when the Constitution was written. Then the men who wrote the phrases and corresponded on them died. Now there are literally hundreds of interpretations. Propositions are pretty fragile.

'A third of Americans agreed on the Declaration when it was written.'

Well, the people that became Americans.

'Another third didn't care.'

Pretty much.

'A final third had moved or glumly accepted their fate when the Constitution was written.'

The people that moved did not become Americans, and they generally moved before the Constitution became the law of the land.

Sometimes I feel like Trump is orchestrating an elaborate hoax designed to expose his own supporters as literal fascists.

Yeah, you sound totally sane. Please keep posting every thought that runs through your head.

All of the rational people here are excited by your keen insight, and wish you had authority on national policy decisions.

I would just like to say that owing to the tremendous competition for "literally Hitler" I would like to be "literally Rommel" please and thank you.

You realize that fascism does have a literal definition, right.
And I am using it correctly.

It does? I was under the impression that historians, political scientists etc. vary in their interpretations as to what exactly constitutes Fascism but if you know the literal definition, by all means do share.

Bonus points if you can explain how it relates to having detained children say the Pledge of Allegiance.

This definition is pretty decent:

"a political system based on a very powerful leader, state control of social and economic life, and extreme pride in country and race, with no expression of political disagreement allowed"

I think we can check down "extreme price in country and race", probably "very powerful leader" (cult of personality and all), to a certain extent "state control of social and economic life" (given Trump's views on immigration and trade, also his love of public-private partnerships), and also "no expression of political disageeement allowed" if you take his threats against Amazon and such seriously.

Maybe a couple of those are only 0.5 out of 1. But we can sum it to AT LEAST 2.5 out of 4.

Note: pretty decent != literal. Let's go through your list anyway.

1. "very powerful leader" - Trump has no more power than any other American president. He is subject to the same checks and balances as any other president. When e.g. the courts strike down one of his policies, he abides by their decisions rather than go his own way like a real strongman would.

Cult of personality? Yeah his supporters like him which is the same as any other politician who manages to get elected. Unlike a real cult of personality, there are no penalties for blasphemy. In fact he is ridiculed all the time.

2. "state control of social and economic life" Ha! Not even close. Which industries and social institutions have been placed under the supervision of government officials that were not under the same in previous administrations. In fact by cutting regulations, stopping title IX kangaroo courts in the universities etc. Trump has lessened state interference. Including immigration and trade here is a huge stretch. The state has always had those powers.

3. "Extreme pride in country and race" Leaving aside the tendentious word "extreme" we can give partial credit here. But what does that mean in practice? Pointing out various third-world cultures are not very good? That's blindingly obvious to anyone who is honest and yet, again, has not been enshrined into law i.e. you will not be barred from the country for being Mexican. You will be barred for entering illegally and perhaps that disproportionately affects Mexicans but that's a feature of Mexican or whatever behavior not the US political system. Even the so-called "Muslim ban" did not affect 90% of the worlds Muslims so that's not evidence of racism either.

4. "No expression of political disagreement allowed" To even attempt to claim this is risible. There is loud and energetic disagreement with Trump all over the place. There is no evidence that any threats against Amazon or the like have actually cowed them from continuing to disagree.

Using your criteria 0.5/4 would be more accurate and even that's with a huge pinch of salt.

Nevertheless I think Trump does meet the literal definition of Fascist which is "anyone Hazel Meade doesn't like." Right Hazel?

As I pointed out below, I'm not saying "the Trump Administration is fascist" I'm saying "Trump makes his supporters look like fascists".
I realize it might be a subtle distinction.
For example, the fact that trump doesn't *actully* have authoritarian powers doesn't preclude the fact that (a) he acts like he wishes he did, and (b) his supporters back him up whenever he does stuff that seems authoritarian. For example, the original "Muslim ban", the firing of Comey, his apparent belief that he is immune from prosecution, and his desire to fire Muller. He can't actually *do* many of the things he says. But his supporters explicitly say that he can and should be able to do those things. Get it? Just like he can't actually deprive immigrants at the border of due process - the courts wouldn't allow it. But he's said that and his supporters are (likely) nodding their heads saying "yeah, actually immigrants shouldn't have due process" right this very instant.
(I havn't checked to see, but I'm going to put money on it).

It's a little too subtle for me I think. My daughter used to wish she was a princess. Doesn't mean she was advocating Monarchy. Rather than try and guess what's going on in Trump's mind (The Current Year's equivalent of "Obama is a secret Muslim" IMO.) look at what he is actually doing which is most unfascistlike. Different ideas get floated about. Some get accepted. Some get rejected. Some are accepted but have to be revised later. That's democracy not fascism.

Btw he said that illegal aliens should not get due process at the borders not immigrants as you misleadingly put it. Another lynchpin of democracy is that we argue in good faith. If you won't do it, you will have no grounds to complain if no one else does either.

"Another lynchpin of democracy is that we argue in good faith."

Yet Trump's most vocal defenders don't seem to being that.

Hazel, please don't go bugnut crazy on us.

Here's the definition of Fascism from wikipedia:

Fascism is a form of radical authoritarian nationalism, characterized by dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition and control of industry and commerce.

There's no logical overlap between that definition and the Trump administration. If you are seriously claiming that there is a legitimate, substantive overlap, then you have fallen down the well of Left wing delusions.

My point is that the way he acts - the position he puts his fans in, by forcing them to support the ridiculous things he tweets (denial of due process rights, hello?) make it looks like his fans are a bunch of fascists.
it happens so often, that it almost seems like he's doing it on purpose.

And "no overlap" - gimme a break. You can't deny the nationalism. And the protectionism is certainly an effort to "control commerce" literally by definition. And you left out the race-baiting on immigration, the zero tolerance policies, the willingness to inflict cruelties on innocent people for the sake of an agenda, are those not the actions of an authoritarian?
There is plenty of overlap, if you look for it, if you care to see. Nevermind the fact that many of the "alt-right" that make up his hardcore base, and literally are, literal fascists.

Fascism was an inter-War phenomenon and one of several competitors for State power on the European continent after the defeat and decline of the monarchies. It did not survive the end of World War 2.

Americans and their Anglo-Celt forebears are just not suited for the State uber alles. If you talk to a Syrian Ba'athist or a German, you'll discern a respectful, almost tearfully reverent view of the State that is completely lacking in the Anglo-American mind. American loyalty to the State seems rather strongly conditioned upon the State's honoring the right to bear arms and giving Christianity priority in the public square.

Those comments sound desperate. Nearly every President of the US would properly be described as in favor of or a supporter of nationalism. The definition was "rational authoritarian nationalism", which is clearly different than simple nationalism.

"control of industry and commerce." was not tariffs. It's explicitly exerting direct control of industry.

"An important aspect of fascist economies was economic dirigism meaning an economy where the government often subsidizes favorable companies and exerts strong directive influence over investment, as opposed to having a merely regulatory role. In general, fascist economies were based on private property and private initiative, but these were contingent upon service to the state. ...
In terms of economic practice, this meant promoting the interests of successful businessmen while destroying trade unions and other organizations of the working class. Fascist governments declared the trade union movement illegal and replaced it with labor organizations under the direct control of the government, which ensured that workers could not undertake any effective economic action. Membership in these labor organizations was compulsory, their leaders were appointed by the ruling party rather than elected by the membersand they were presented as a new type of unions which would serve to harmonize the interests of workers and businesses"

"And you left out the race-baiting on immigration, the zero tolerance policies, the willingness to inflict cruelties on innocent people for the sake of an agenda, are those not the actions of an authoritarian?"

None of that has anything to do with authoritarianism. Authoritarianism essentially means one party control of government with no checks and balances. Furthermore, every President has always been willing to " inflict cruelties on innocent people for the sake of an agenda".

Carter's grain embaro, Reagan's invasion of Grenada, Clinton's Waco, Bush's Iraq War, Obama's Drone war, etc. But everyone of those policies was carried out in a multi-party state with a functioning Judicial system that wasn't afraid to countermand the Executive branch.

There's nothing Fascist about the Trump administration and Trump benefits greatly from an opposition too stupid to accurately describe his bumbling policies.

The ability to apply clear criteria to a case study is one of the tests I use for finding competent analysts.

Hazel is showing a complete inability to apply the plain sense of words consistently to the evidence before her. Her mind is clearly working backwards from what she wants to find, to what is.

You MR nerds can waste time debating definitions. Meanwhile jobs are going overseas (see Harley), prices are going up from tariffs, healthcare costs continue its march up, deficits are growing. I'm a populist but Trump is losing me, I'm sorry if that hurts you zealots but I hope he loses his next election.

I'm just not wasting my time debating a point that should be blindingly obvious to anyone who actually IS arguing in good faith.
If you can't see why Trump's opponents think his policies resemble fascism, you really should try, or YOU might be the ones surprised in the next election.


I've done more than 20 years in international relations, mostly on the harder quantitative and statistical side of conflict studies and historical analysis. I know my way around the political economy of nearly any type of state you would care to mention. Trump's policies are not - for any reasonable use of the term - fascist. It's pure Godwin's Law.

Now, I'm sure Trumps opponents think his policies are fascistic. The left thinks everyone to the right of Jeb Bush is a fascist. They are wrong. And, I would wager, massively ignorant about fascism in any of its European forms .

They send the youths and an Aunt, Uncle cousin etc. picks them up at the non-detention center?

+1, that's what I suspect. It might not actually be a direct relative. But there are good odds that the illegal immigrants already know somebody in the US and the teenager/children are leaving to meet up with that group.


It would be good to know a bit more about the mechanics of the handling process; where the kids end up until their case is resolved.

Why does pledging allegiance to a republic (i.e. supporting its ideals) necessarily involve living there? Zionists of both Jewish and other varieties famously support Israel without living there and no one except a few conspiracy nuts thinks there is anything strange about that. All kinds of other ethnic groups do the same for the parts of the world they are interested in. Conversely Russians are just the most prominent group who take an interest in American internal affairs from outside ICE jurisdiction.

Having illegal aliens recite the pledge (and probably other typical elementary school activities) is a way of teaching them ideals such as it’s wrong to disobey the law on a whim. Hopefully they will be inspired to take such American ideals back to their own countries and thereby make them less shitholish.

Hmm that should have been a reply to Anonymous. The new comment system is a little wacky at times.

I am old enough to remember when Libertarians didn't think anyone should say the Pledge of Allegiance.

Now there would be a good contrarian editorial for Tyler.

Ah, covered here

Well that's all very nice but what does that have to do with your attempted "gotcha" in your first comment?

It's exactly on topic, isn't it?

My recollections of saying the Pledge are fuzzy. I think we said it in elementary school and then stopped sometime in or by middle school? That probably makes sense because children below 6th grade are young and malleable, whereas children above 7th grade are rebellious and independent.

I think it's fine for young Americans to say something reinforcing their American-ness. But I certainly see the logic of the libertarian position. We are not supposed to be subjects in this country. We are supposed to be citizens with inalienable rights.

Pledging Allegiance seems more about making a commitment of the more loyal subject kind.

So where do you get off asking kids to pledge, to be loyal subjects, and then kicking them out?

My children attend public schools in a deep blue city in a deep blue state. The pledge is recited every morning from grades K-12 and there is zero sentiment against it. Even the teenage edgelords of my own high school memories didn't fight it.

Saying the pledge isn't strange or sinister or hypocritical; it's normal. (No one cares what lolberterians think. They don't exist in this neck of the woods.)

You do want those kids to experience normality don't you?

'and there is zero sentiment against it'

To the extent that if you are a German exchange student in an Arizona high school, it takes about one day to learn that not reciting the pledge in class is completely unacceptable. Even though it has exactly zero to do with you, a person who has never planned to become an American citizen. Though the experience might provide an unwelcome insight in your own nation's history when seeing something every day that you personally thought had been consigned to the grave of Germany's dark past when you were growing up.

'Saying the pledge isn't strange or sinister or hypocritical; it's normal.'

To the extent that non-Americans feel compelled to mouth words in public that they do not believe, and which actually do not apply to them at all. Of course, I am American, so I grew up that way - listening to non-Americans talk about the strangeness they felt, and the hypocrisy they felt necessary to practice was another perspective.

'You do want those kids to experience normality don't you?'

In a significant part of the world, something like the public recital of the pledge every morning in school is not normality, but considered a sign of something else.

That military members stand for the National Anthem before a movie is played on base is a bit different, even if the social pressure to at least stand as a non-American is definitely felt. And how can you tell the non-Americans? That they have a problem with the hand over their heart part is a tip-off, as is the fact they normally sit down a bit more slowly, not being familiar with the ending of the Star Spangled Banner.

As there are no German exchange students in cages we can ignore that part of your response.

For the rest I'm confused. Are you implying that the illegal children are put upon colonials forced by the pledge into a culture they don't believe in? Because Anonymous was suggesting they are super-patriots yearning for a chance to put the ideals of the pledge into action. You can't both be right.

"You can't both be right."

Logically true. However, logically, they can still both be wrong.

You know, try as hard as possible to use quotes to show what a comment is in response to, it just doesn't work.

But to try this more concretely - why would you think forcing children (who, in the main, were not consulted about their future desire to become a citizen of the U.S.) to pledge allegiance to a country they are not now, and extremely unlikely to ever be after being processed by ICE (one assumes with appropriate biometric technology), citizens of, is somehow normal?

And I mean that in all seriousness - do you honestly think having citizens of different nations pledge allegiance to a nation currently holding them in a facility before deporting them is not strange or sinister?

Maybe you need to listen a bit to Peterson talking about how governments twist morality.

The Pledge of Allegiance is for American citizens, which absolutely none of the children in these facilities are.

Hope that is direct enough, without the distraction of showing how non-Americans not in cages view their experience in terms of saying a Pledge of Allegiance that they do not consider has anything to do with themselves, but which they cannot simply ignore when it is said in public at the start of school.

No doubt the facilities also force the children wear socks and shoes, one or both of which might be a novelty for many of them. The staff may speak them to them in English at least some of the time which would be new but hardly sinister. (Even Spanish might be awkward for those of indigenous stock.) The pledge of Allegiance to me is more of the same. It's something that children in America do. Nothing strange or sinister about any of it.

If they end up staying then it's a good thing to know. If they are deported they are welcome to stop saying it when they get back home.

Just for the record, I consider this a stupid policy. If you want the illegal immigrants to go back to their country of origin, you don't force them to say the Pledge of Allegiance. It's counter productive.

Though, if you are going to sort, I recommend keeping the children who want to say the Pledge of Allegiance.

As a non-American, who spent time in both US education and lived in the US for a bit, I stood (at ease) out of respect for pledges, but did not recite the words. I would obviously stand for the anthem, and either be silent or sing (badly), depending on how I felt.

I would suggest simply replacing the word "allegiance" with "goodwill" in the pledge for an alien wishing to fit in in such a context.

but did not repeat the words.

We are at the point where perhaps we should link ICE to the BATF. ICE should be limited to only the technology and manpower the BATF is allowed to have to enforce gun laws, nothing more.

I'm cool with not enforcing the borders so long as we're agreed on not enforcing the taxes.

Enforcing the speed limit could be done by a few cops randomly pulling speeders over. Or it could be done by Predator Drones shooting rockets at any car that registers 66 mph.

How is opting for the first "not enforcing the borders". BTW, relatively speaking taxes are even less enforced than borders. What % of tax returns get audited? What is the IRS's audit capacity? How is it relatively to the past?

Because if the State is not going to preserve its own territorial and social integrity then it obviously doesn't need my money.

Absurd nonsense. What exactly do you think the borders of the US looked like for the first 200+ years?

I think this is my new position, too.

>could not legally require children to stay on the premises

It hardly matters. If they have to stay, Trump is running a concentration camp. If they can leave, Trump is "losing track" of vulnerable children under his care.

On the next adventure on the Hamster Wheel of Outrage!

Suppose we locked up anyone who didn't return a library book? Technically this is a crime in some contexts, after all. If we decided that we would absolutely do this 100% of the time we would encounter many cases where children would either have to be cared for by the gov't or put in bad situations as they get turned over to 'other people' (family members, friends, etc.?) who however nice were not their primary caregivers.

Like it or not such a policy would entail really disrupting the lives of many children. That's a real cost of such a policy and if you want to argue lowering the % of overdue library items is worth it then go ahead and do so.

Like it or not these people do not justify such costs in most cases.

I think some of the commenters above have not seen Mike Godwin's update on Godwin's law.

So, Mike Godwin is literally saying that the Trump administration is: "they’re the “embryonic form” of a horror {the 3rd Reich} we hoped we had put behind us."

Yes, that's awesome! Well it's awesome if you want to get Trump re-elected, anyway. It's probably not the smartest article to write if you want to discourage blind partisanship and increasing polarization of America, of course. Because at the point you try to reverse Godwin's Law when it's about Republicans or Trump then you have discredited any impartiality you could previously claim. You have inherently weakened your moral authority. Isn't TDS the best!

In a related note: Is Trumpism just an aspect of ODS? Is TDS just an admission that ODS was acceptable? Will either side be willing to admit they've gone too far and that the other side actually isn't literally Hitler?

So in sum it's a bad idea to point out Trump's authoritarian inclinations not because he lacks such inclinations but because such things are somehow 'rude' to point out in 'polite company' and the punishment is people will increase support for Trump?

How far does this system go? Like if Trump had 3M Jews killed in concentration camps would Hitler comparisons be out of line because Hitler had 6M Jews killed? Is the only purpose of studying the history of WWII to prepare ourselves from only a literal reincarnation of Hitler and the Third Reich?

"So in sum it's a bad idea to point out Trump's authoritarian inclinations not because he lacks such inclinations but because such things are somehow 'rude' to point out in 'polite company'"

No Boonton. You are an idiot who has a hard time following a simple point. The Trump administration is not fascist. He's not "literally Hitler". It's not an embryonic Third Reich.

There's no common ground between the Third Reich and the Trump Administration outside of the feverish delusions of people who can't reason without resorting to an appeal to emotions.

"How far does this system go? Like if Trump had 3M Jews killed"

That would be a perfect example of someone that's delusional. There's 0% chance of this happening, but you can't manage to have a rational argument. If you were a devout and delusional Christian, Trump would be Satan in your mind. If you're a delusional Lefty the ultimate evil analog becomes Hitler. In neither case is the comparison remotely accurate.

However, the inability to rationally direct criticism to Trump's errors does increase his chance of getting re-elected.

You are playing the game Godwin explicitly called out.

You are saying "since Hitler, no one can be faulted for simple authoritarianism."

No Boonton. You are an idiot who has a hard time following a simple point. The Trump administration is not fascist.

Yet actual fascists and Nazi's in the US seem oddly affectionate towards this administration that has nothing in common. Are people who choose to make themselves social outcasts in the name of supporting the above unaware of the characteristics of a true regime that was sympathetic to such things?

Put it another way, suppose Trump did signal favoritism to either Nazism or fascism or both. Not totally overtly and brazenly but enough for you to call them out on it. What would this bare minimum have to be? Where exactly is your line?

This is the sort of thing that happens when your immigration laws are based on fundamentally morally unsound premises. Specifically, the notion that domestic workers are entitled to protection from foreign competition.

Literally none of this would be happening if there was a legal avenue for unskilled labor to come to the US to work. if people from central America had a legal mechanism to come to work in the US, they would not be crossing the border illegally, we would not be arresting them and putting them in detention and we would not be separating them from their children.

We would also not be deporting people who have been in the US since childhood. or who are married to American citizens and have children with them. We would not be raiding factories to arrest people for the crime of exchanging money for labor. We would not have border checkpoints on major highways across Texas, Arizona, New Mexico and California. There would be no reason to have a wall. There would be no coyotes smugging people over the border. No people dying of thirst in the desert. No people getting arrested for bringing water to people dying of thirst in the desert.

How much suffering and misery are you willing to impose upon millions of innocent people in order to keep them from exercising their fundamental human right to do work in exchange for money? is that extra $2.50 an hour, or whatever you think working class white guys would be making if the immigrants weren't here worth it?

"is that extra $2.50 an hour, or whatever you think working class white guys would be making if the immigrants weren't here worth it?"

That would require white guys 1) willing and 2) not meth'd or shot-up enough to do the work. Instead they are harassing brown people and/or playing video game while masturbating to Daddy Trump.

I'm of the brown people persuasion and as you can see from these comments a Trump supporter. I've been harassed by "progressive" white guys but never by meth head video game playing Trump masturbators. Tell me more!

Because people take up space and generate waste and we don't need a resentful ethnic cohort complaining about how evil white men used their parents as human toilet brushes.

You may be familiar with what happened the last time employers used State power to import cheaper, browner workers.

Last time I checked Hispanic laborers were coming here of their own free will. Or do you believe in orbital mind control lasers?

Birthright citizenship, public infrastructure, welfare, and Title VII constitute compulsory association. IOW, the immigrants' patrons are privatizing the profits and socializing the costs.

You're probably the worst libertarian on the internet.

You are Bryan Caplan and I claim my $5.

My literature teacher used to think along the same lines. "Anyone who doesn't care for the lesson is free to leave! (but with a mark on the attendance record)"

Posting again my Solution for Immigration:

1. Feel free to come to the US for 6 months free. If you’re not on a watch list, not a known criminal, terrorist etc. Come and enjoy.

2. At the end of 6 months go back for 3 months or pay $2500. You can then enjoy another 6 months free.

3. ICE’s staff and technology will be no greater than the BATF has to enforce gun control laws. We should do to ICE what Republicans did to BATF, in other words. Also it should be moved from Homeland Security to Commerce. The job should be 40% enforcement and 60% promotion of tourism and trade.

4. Have the IRS target businesses the employ anyone ‘undocumented’. Since seasonal business like agriculture can easily pull from seasonal ‘6 month’ workers there’s really no excuse. ICE’s prime enforcement will be spot checking people who break the ‘6 month’ policy without paying $2500.

5. Break the 6 month rule and you either pay $5000 immediately or get deported. Get yourself deported for this and you either have to wait 3 years to come back or pay $3500 going forward to come back in the US for 6 month terms.

6. If you follow the 6 months on 3 months off pattern for ten years, you can apply for citizenship. If you pay the $2500 option for 5 years you can apply for citizenship. You can also express yourself to citizenship if you serve in the armed forces (some people aren’t aware that non-citizens can and do serve in the US armed forces).

7. Asylum claims would be easier to process. Asylum would just mean you wouldn’t be deported but you’d still have to pay the 6 month fee. If your home country is so horrible $2500 every 6 months is a small price to pay to avoid tyranny.

Here is why this would work. If you lay down roots here and are reasonably successful, paying $2500 and keeping yourself updated ‘in the system’ is not a bad price to pay. Having to cough up $5000 or $3200 going forward is something you’d want to avoid. If your pay is very modest the 6 months on and 3 months off option makes a lot of sense. In the 70’s and before the US border with Mexico was about was well guarded as a highway deep in rural Alabama at 2:30 AM. Most migrants, though, were seasonal. The men would earn US dollars for a few months during harvest in the US and then return to Mexico to be with their families where living expenses were much lower.

What doesn’t work is the East Berlin model we are trying to toy with now. The more you make enforcement heavy handed the more you make it appealing to live ‘off the grid’ like an ‘outlaw’. Think about debt, why does credit work in the US? For centuries before we had ‘debtors prisons’ for people who didn’t pay their bills. Today we just have credit scores. Don’t pay your bills doesn’t mean you go to jail but it does mean you have to pay a $1000 deposit to get a cell phone and things like renting a car become a huge headache.

BTW, if you really want to be a 'rule of law' jerkoff feel free to add:

2.1 Turn in someone violating the 6-month system and you get $500 off your $2500 're-up' fee.


4.1 Like with Medicare fraud, an individual can sue a company for using workers breaking this system 'off the books'. If a company is found to be knowingly do this, they must pay the $5K fine for each person they are using. If you prove this case in court you get 33% of the take you win for the gov't.

"If you pay the $2500 option for 5 years you can apply for citizenship. "

So after I pay this $12,500, am I eligible for SSI ?

Depends. How many work credits have you accumulated? You are aware to collect Social Security you need at least 40 work credits, you're limited to only being able to earn one credit per quarter so you'd need at least 10 years of work and taxes.

For disability the scale varies based on age (older you are the more you need). Perhaps you are thinking of someone who is totally disabled coming here and getting disability after 5 years....well the only problem is in addition to paying $2500 a year you also have to be here 5 years. Whose paying your bills in that time? If you are totally disabled where is the cost of care lower, Mexico or the US?

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