Monday, June 04, 2007

Keep up the pressure

Call the U.S. Capitol Switchboard at (202)224-3121 and ask for your senators' and/or representative's office

US Capitol toll free 877-851-6437 or 866-220-0044

Amnesty is in the news. It's interesting to watch the media twist themselves into knots over this one. Call the folks in DC and say NO to S. 1348.

Also, there will be an OFIR rally on Friday in Salem at 4:00pm. Details to follow.

Random picture of the day: (taken at day labor site in Cornelius)

How about that whole "let's bring them out of the shadows" nonsense. These guys, in response to our protest, stand on a busy street corner with "legalize me" signs.


Anthony DeLucca said...

Let's get the Day Laborers to fix this:

Illegal immigrants burying border in garbage
The Associated Press
Jun. 3, 2007 11:30 AM

TUCSON - After three years of cleanups, the federal government has achieved no better than a 1 percent solution for the problem of trash left in southern Arizona by illegal border-crossers.

Cleanup crews from various agencies, volunteer groups and the Tohono O'odham Nation hauled about 250,000 pounds of trash from thousands of acres of federal, state and private land across southern Arizona from 2002 to 2005, says the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

But that's only a fraction of the nearly 25 million pounds of trash thought to be out there.

Authorities estimate the 3.2 million-plus immigrants caught by the Border Patrol dropped that much garbage in the southern Arizona desert from July 1999 through June 2005. The figure assumes that each illegal immigrant discards eight pounds of trash, the weight of some abandoned backpacks found in the desert.

The trash is piling up faster than it can be cleaned up. Considering that the Border Patrol apprehended more than 577,000 illegal immigrants in 2004-05 alone, the BLM figures that those people left almost four million pounds of trash that same year.

That's 16 times what was picked up in three years. And that doesn't include the unknown amounts of garbage left by border-crossers who don't get caught.

"We're keeping up with the trash only in certain locations, in areas that we've hit as many as three times," said Shela McFarlin, BLM's special assistant for international programs.

The trash includes water bottles, sweaters, jeans, razors, soap, medications, food, ropes, batteries, cell phones, radios, homemade weapons and human waste.

It has been found in large quantities as high as Miller Peak, towering more than 9,400 feet in the Huachuca Mountains, as well as in low desert such as Organ Pipe National Monument and Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge.

"In the Huachucas, you are almost wading through empty gallon water jugs," said Steve Singkofer, the Hiking Club's president. "There's literally thousands of water jugs, clothes, shoes. You could send 1,000 people out there and they could each pick up a dozen water jugs, and they couldn't get it all."

While nobody has an exact cost estimate for removing all the garbage, it's clearly not cheap. But McFarlin agrees with several advocacy groups that without a tightening of controls on illegal immigration, a guest-worker program or other reform of federal border policy, the trash will just keep coming regardless of what's spent.

In 2002, the United States estimated that removing all litter from lands just in southeast Arizona - east of the Tohono Reservation - would cost about $4.5 million over five years. This count didn't include such trash hotbeds as Ironwood Forest National Monument, the Altar Valley, Organ Pipe and Cabeza Prieta.

Since then, Congress appropriated about $3.4 million for a wide range of environmental remediating measures in all of southern Arizona. This includes repairing roads, building fences and removing abandoned cars.

The five-year tab is $62.9 million for all forms of environmental remediating for immigration-related damage across southeast Arizona, including $23 million for the first year.

Most of the garbage is left at areas where immigrants wait to be picked up by smugglers. The accumulation of disintegrating toilet paper, human feces and rotting food is a health and safety issue for residents of these areas and visitors to public lands, a new BLM report says.

"It's particularly serious in areas where there are livestock," said Robin Hoover, pastor of the First Christian Church in Tucson and president of Humane Borders, a group that puts water tanks in the desert for immigrants and coordinates monthly cleanups of Ironwood Monument and other sites.

"I've even found injectable drugs in the desert," he said. "It's rare when we find that kind of stuff, but there's tons of over-the-counter medication out there. If some cow comes along and eats a bunch of pills, that would be a real sick cow."

The trash also isn't good for wildlife, said Arizona Game and Fish spokesman Dana Yost. Birds and mammals can get tangled up in it or eat it, causing digestive problems, Yost said.

But clear inroads are being made into the trash problem, said BLM's McFarlin. Using U.S. money, various local and federal agencies, the Tohono O'odham Tribe, the conservationist Malpais Borderlands Group and student youth corps remove trash from the most obvious and accessible areas, she said.

What needs tackling now are more remote areas such as wilderness, mountains and deserts far from major roads, she said. A couple of times, authorities have had to use helicopters or mules to haul stuff out of such areas.

This summer, with Border Patrol apprehensions of illegal immigrants down, the Tohono O'odham Tribe is seeing less trash on the ground than usual, said Gary Olson, the tribe's solid-waste administrator.

"I don't know whether they're hiding their trash or whether they are just not coming," Olson said.

But only seven weeks ago, No More Deaths, an advocacy group that looks for injured, sick and lost immigrants, came across a 10,000-square-foot area five miles west of Arivaca littered with hundreds and hundreds of backpacks.

"I've never seen anything that size. It's unbelievable," said Steve Johnston, who coordinates the group's camp near Arivaca.

Other activists from Derechos Humanos, Defenders of Wildlife and No More Deaths say the trash piles show what happens when the federal government deliberately drives the immigrants into the desert by sealing the borders in cities.

"If you were going to cities, you wouldn't need to carry three days' worth of food," said Kat Rodriguez, a coordinator organizer for Derechos Humanos.

But a Cochise County activist who has been photographing garbage and other signs of damage from illegal immigration for five years said she is appalled the federal government is spending tax dollars to pick up the garbage.

Illegal immigrants should pick up the trash themselves, said Cindy Kolb, who helped found the group Civil Homeland Defense.

"Our mothers did not pay someone to pick up our trash," Kolb said. "We were taught to pick it up ourselves and to practice civic pride as law-abiding citizens."

Anonymous said...

National Public Radio reported today on how the "pressure" generated by the right-wing noise machine compares with the reality of American public opinion. Frank Newport, chief editor of the Gallup Poll, said:

"While these smaller interest groups who are passionate about their feelings say 'We represent the people,' they don't."

Also: Over the last few years, two thirds of Democrats AND Republicans have consistently supported legalizing some 12 million immigrants, providing they pay some sort of penalty. In other words, what's been proposed in the bill you're up in arms over. That’s straight from Gallup.

Frank, one more time:

"While these smaller interest groups who are passionate about their feelings say 'We represent the people,' they don't."


R Huse said...

Um, wait a second, guest opinions on NPR does not hard news make. NPR isnt exactly a "hard news" outlet.

I went and checked out the polls, and of course, gee whiz, it sure doesn't look exactly like what apparently was said on NPR.

www.polling .com has quite a few of these polls shown on it.

It is true, a majority of the respondents did appear to say yes to the idea that illegals should be given some chance at citizenship. But wait, look a little more, most polls seem to show people responding that people emigrating here now make the society worse. Most polls show vast majorities saying illegal immigration is a serious problem. Most polls show people want immigration decreased.

In fact going through the polls shows a\some pretty clear trends:

a) when asked people seem to indicate that they think people here, even illegally, should be given some sort of path to citizenship.However, the path favoured seems to be illegals must return home then apply.

b) virtually every poll indicates Americans regard illegal immigration as a very serious problem.

c) In polls that asked, most, by large margins, seem to regard illegals as a drain on the economy.

d) by huge majorities, virtually every poll wants tougher enforcement of immigration laws.

e) again by huge majorities most seem to indicate they want an increased presence on the border by stationing national guard troops there.

f) virtually every poll indicates respondents by huge majorities think Bush is doing a poor job on his handling of immigration policy.(Hardly a ringing endorsement of the current immigration bill, since I think both left and right would agree, Bush is both solidly behind it and has been quite visible in stumping for it).

Taking all this into account, there is hardly the vast divergence from the small noisy groups NPR would have us believe. Does this mean NPR is lying? Of course not. What it means is that NPR like Rush or O'Reilly is an opinion outlet, not a news outlet. Rush has a bias, NPR does as well. That bias is reflected in how they report things, the questions they ask guests and what type of guests they have on. While that doesn't mean that everything said is untrue, it does mean it has a slant and that should be taken into account by the listener. NPR, Rush etc. are opinion oriented media, not hard news.

dchamil said...

Daniel, KSND radio in Salem at 95.1 has switched from English-language popular music to an all-Spanish format. A sign of the times, I guess. In other news, I have deleted my blog, Borderline Insanity, so you might as well remove it from your list of blogs. I've run out of things to say, and others are saying the same things I was saying.

Anonymous said...

NPR isnt exactly a "hard news" outlet.


Possibly one of the lamest responses I've ever seen here ... go to NPR and listen to the story yourself. The man said what he said. Call him yourself and ask him if that was his voice and if that's what he said.

You people are a piece of work, I swear to Christ. Makes me wonder if you get your news from the signals picked up by tin foil wrapped around your heads.

Anonymous said...

Gordy's people dumped my call on a recording system but Ronnies actualy listened, took my zip but wouldn't answer my question about caller ratios and numbers.

WhenI I asked if I needed to call in every day or be forgoten I was told that once a Bill was fine.

By now they have discovered how I am registered and my comment dumped.

Anonymous said...

I heard that story too on NPR. It was interesting. Multiple sources, all sides presented. "Fair and balanced" in a real sense. All their stuff is archived, people should check it out. They actually have a lot of stuff on immigration.

no illegal aliens said...

Get this, Daniel, in The Oregonian (print edition) today, June 5, 2007 (sunrise, Southeast edition), two stories on illegal immigration.

On page A10, in Juchitan, Mexico, six illegal aliens were killed when a the false floor in a truck of bananas collapsed. The illegal aliens paid as much as $5,000 to $7,000 to be smuggled from Central America—from Salvador, Guatemala and Nicaragua, through Mexico to the United States.

Meanwhile on the same day in The Oregonian, the Business section's story (page C1, June 5, 2007) "Valley's berry growers short on field pickers" talks about the lack of berry pickers in the Willamette Valley farm fields. The blame: tougher border security. Additionally, the story makes claim that many workers are using false Social Security and immigration documents.

Anonymous said...

Anthony DeLucca said...

Let kids pick berries again and there won't be a problem. I'm not that old, but I remember getting up at 5am during the summer break, and going down to the berry fields to earn money for the summer.

My friends and I worked hard, made some decent spending money, the berries got picked, and everybody won. Since the State decided that kids (13-17) picking berries to earn money was somehow akin to child slave labor, the growers had to fill the void with illegal workers.

Drop that stupid "Child Labor" B.S. and the berry picking problem will dissappear in a heartbeat.

R Huse said...

Anon 6.25AM

Before responding, you would do well to read what you are responding to first.

I said - "It is true, a majority of the respondents did appear to say yes to the idea that illegals should be given some chance at citizenship."

What part of "Its true" do you not understand? Once again, READ before responding.

I never said that the Gallup guy you quoted did not say what he did. Where in the world did that idea pop into your head?

What I said was that looking over the polls I cite, he was clearly giving opinion, not news.

At any rate, the funny thing is you call my response lame, and then go on to fall flat on your face by failure to read what you are responding to. Definitely my first chortle of the day, thank you.

TMZ said...

Rhuse, I don't have a dog in this race one way or the other, but I'm curious: What do you consider a serious, un-biased "hard news" outlet?

Anonymous said...

“What do you consider a serious, un-biased "hard news" outlet?”

Most places other than NPR.

R Huse said...

A news source that is serious, un-biased AND hard news? I don't think there is one. It might surprise you but I find PBS's "The News Hour" actually reasonably unbiased. However much of the program is devoted to discussion, which is often opinion and thus not "hard news".

In this I think drawing conclusions from a poll is very often a matter of opinion since the interpretation of a poll is pretty subjective. I can see an exception to this if you have hard break one way or another on a pretty clearly defined question set.. Given what I found in looking at the polls, I don't see that one could look at them and say we have this situation. Thus the Gallup representative was giving his interpretation, his opinion. That is not hard news ( a bomb killed six children today ) , its editorial content ( I think this poll means this ). That's perfectly fine so long as it is not confused with the former.