Thursday, February 28, 2008

hazleton gets purdy

Wanna chew some aspirin? Let’s go …

This is a story, albeit bereft of links to substantiate only because I am too lazy to find them, of how sausage is made. If you know that warm, cozy feeling of sitting at the table with your Jimmy Dean and a few aborted chickens over-easy, then here is the final sausage, all grilled up purty.

The link is a pretty legal brief in support of a town local to me. The town, Hazleton, passed an ordinance some time ago requiring landlords and businesses to get proof of citizenship prior to renting to or hiring employees. The brief looks so official and makes a sound constitutional argument. I am sure the local political hacks feel smart when they read it.

Here’s the reality.

Hazleton is a dirty little town with closed storefronts and aged buildings. There’s a junk yard just off main street that houses enough rats to serve everyone in Asia a three-course meal for a week. Go just one block from the main drag, and the market becomes a mercado. Every sign changes to Spanish. Nothing wrong with that.

The claim, and I listen but neither believe or disbelieve, is that “these people” are sucking the town’s resources dry with their welfare draws including, most discussed, showing up the hospital emergency room. In Pennsylvania, maybe everywhere, every county has to have one hospital designated for providing care regardless of ability to pay. In my county (not the same as Hazletons) that designated hospital just so happens to be the one closest to me. I have gone to the ER a couple of times, just once for myself, and when I check in and offer my insurance card they tell me, “We cannot ask for or process anything on insurance until the emergency services have been completed.”

The purported illegals in this area are largely migrant workers, or were when they originally came. I had some overlap with the societal structure when I represented a runner in federal court. These folks are here for years and years. They routinely send money home. They come and go between countries not often but regularly. Getting IDs, including Social Security cards, was merely a matter of paying the price – with the money, access was not an issue.

My guy told me that he could be back in the US at will. He was going to be deported as a result of the charges against him. I said to him, “So how long will it take you to get back here?” He said, “I haven’t spent much time with my family lately, so I’ll probably stay there two weeks.”

So with all the illegals so plain to Hazleton’s ruling elite, they pass the law to push them out of their backyard. Of course, Hazleton would be a great location to shot a 1950s film of a poverty-stricken town, but that’s another issue. Of course, without the illegals shopping in the mercados and elsewhere the commerce in Hazleton would dry up like a thin puddle in Arizona, but that’s another issue.

“Push ‘em out,” says Jim-Bob.

“You tell ‘em!” echoes Mike-Bob.

“Burn the witch! Take her shoes! Let’s go eat!” says Dave-Bob.

All the other –Bobs join in. Sausage is made.

I am certain the federal Court of Appeals will overturn the local decision. There is precedent for the law. Afterward, Hazleton will be able to resume its downward slope into non-existence unimpeded by the financial impact of those nasty illegals.

How do we solve the illegal-population situation? How the hell do I know? But I will suggest that the very question subsumes the direction: It is a “situation.” It is not some hypothetical situation with Tommy Jefferson shooing away little red-headed black kids by saying, “I told you never to visit me at work!” “OK, daddy …”

The borders were porous; illegals poured through. Now they are here and have been for decades. Our economy has conformed to their presence. Play too heavy a hand and there will be nasty economic consequences both here and in Mexico. It is not different that Iraq: We are there; pull out and leave a vacuum, then it will collapse. Something measured needs to be done. There is also recognition that we cannot reward illegal behavior. You figure it out.


Are you high? Here you go. Welcome.

Meghan doesn’t document her findings on origins of phrases, but I have no reason to disbelief her. I am not a group-hug-let’s-sing-Kum-Bai-Ah kind of guy, but I have just removed the phrase “rule of thumb” from my lexicon. Meghan: No, this phrase is definitely NOT "P.C"! Who knew? "Rule of thumb" derived from the days when woman were sometimes beaten with a switch. To be "kind" the switch could not be thicker than a thumb's width. This was made law in 1782 when an English judge stated that men were allowed to beat their wives but that the stick could not be thicker than one's thumb.

This is interesting. You need to drop the page just a little until you see the spinning girl. It is described in the text – but look at the pic first. I am right-brained, and if I put the image into my peripheral vision, I could make it change direction, and hold that changed direction when I looked directly at it.

Is you pet suicidal? Give it anti-depressants. Really. How utterly pathetic.

I’ve had those confirmation links you have to hit in an e to activate some account. I like the idea of a 15 minute e-mail address. It dies quickly, as does the ability to clog your spam folder.

Later …

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