Summit Daily letters: Economics 101
February 28, 2018
Morgan Liddick misses the underlying issue, the same issue most illegal immigration paranoids miss, or ignore: supply and demand, an issue conservatives should embrace. Illegal immigrants aren't here by accident; they're here, in Summit County especially, because there is work for them. During our recent 'great recession' illegal immigration virtually stopped. Supply and demand. Economics 101.
At one point in our country's history, a similar labor void was filled by slavery. That got to be too much for our country's collective conscience, just as our country's current treatment of illegal immigrants is beginning to weigh on many people's collective conscience.
There is a difference, of course; slaves didn't get paid. Illegal immigrants do, sort of. Illegal immigrants want to be here because there's an opportunity to improve their life and maybe give their children a chance for a better life, a human characteristic we all share. In the process, they help keep Summit County's economy rolling.
So Morgan, try a column on squaring supply and demand economics with a lack of labor. That might actually be a useful discussion instead of worrying about driver's licenses. You could include a discussion about how helicoptering parents keep their kids from filling many of the jobs illegal immigrants currently fill, thus depriving their kids of opportunities to learn valuable life skills, something I suspect most illegal immigrant parents' are smart enough to avoid.
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Not surprisingly, I can start toppling Liddick's column with its sensational title which begs questions like, "Is methadone treatment an approval for heroine use?" or "Is the availability of condoms at clinics and colleges an endorsement for promiscuity?"
Yet, such a piecemeal demolition to his piece might not reveal the bigger flaw that is Liddick's, his ineptness as a statistician notwithstanding. Once again, he exposes deeper structural flaws like an inability to comprehend reality — especially the reality of those less fortunate than himself. It's all an accident of birth, after all — isn't it?
I recommend he take a class on statistics — even a 101 class should suffice. I found his mathematical lawlessness more disconcerting than that which he writes about. Legitimate mistakes? Or an attempt to create a veneer of legitimacy, a connivance to fear-monger and vilify — once again.
And once again, he cites dubious sources: the Foundation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR). According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, "FAIR leaders have ties to white supremacist groups and eugenicists and have made many racist statements. Its advertisements have been rejected because of racist content. FAIR's founder, John Tanton, has expressed his wish that America remain a majority-white population: a goal to be achieved, presumably, by limiting the number of nonwhites who enter the country."
The CATO Institute. A think tank, not an independent research group! Founded by Charles Koch, funded by the Koch brothers.
The Hoover Institute. Largely funded by right-wing foundations and corporate donors such as ExxonMobil — so, not surprisingly, one of the Hoover fellows is Thomas Gale Moore, author of the book, "Climate of Fear: Why We Shouldn't Worry About Global Warming."
Finally, I will collect on his bet and answer/explain his somewhat rhetorical question: "Why they think a lawless state is preferable to the protections we currently enjoy . . ."?
Mr. Liddick, your erroneous stats prove no major dangers nor "lost protections." Some of the most cruel and unjust laws are those that hold people back from what they are capable of achieving. Laws like these should not only be decried but defied! What you see as a lawless state might just be a nation growing to fulfill those inalienable rights of "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."
The definition of insanity
In 1620, a group of nonconformists arrived on the shores of Massachusetts searching for toleration of their beliefs. Before they left the ship, they created an agreement binding themselves together for the good of the community. In this moment, these pilgrims redefined the purpose of government as being for the general good of the people. With the growth of the colonies, that ideal grew deep roots in the political conscience of Americans. Patriots formed their argument for revolution upon this ideal. As they made their argument, they followed the enlightenment thinkers in the need to have government secure specific rights. However their faith never wavered in the belief that government's purpose was for the general good of its people.
Here we are again with a tragic moment that calls into question the idea that one guaranteed right is more important than the general good. Nowhere else on earth are citizens able to rightfully acquire the means for committing the heinous crime of declaring open season on our nation's children. A definition of insanity is expecting different results from the same set of circumstances. I find it truly absurd that a disturbed 19-year-old has access to legally obtain an assault rifle and multiple magazines of rounds to perpetrate this genocide.
Is it truly for the general good, that our rights include a passage guaranteeing this kind of unrestricted access? I don't understand how "a well regulated militia being necessary for the preservation of a free nation" can be interpreted to mean that every lunatic fringe group should be allowed to amass a stockpile of weaponry that quite frankly has no business being sold to a law-abiding or any other type of citizen. We have three levels of well regulated militia who serve to protect those very freedoms. We give lip service to honoring their sacrifice for the country, but refuse to rationalize the laws to keep them from having to wear a very large target on their backs.
The theme for the National History Day this year is conflict and compromise in History. We are trying to teach our children that the best way to resolve conflict is through compromise. However, the rigidity of both sides over the Second Amendment has allowed us as a people to accept the unacceptable. What we should be rigid, is that the safety of our children is the most uncompromising stance we need to take. I urge everyone to voice their outrage to our lawmakers, who put their personal gain from the gunmakers ahead of the general good of the people. Urge them to protect our children by making rational laws concerning what can be purchased and by whom. I have no issue with our hunting culture, nor am I against the hobby of target and skeet sheeting to hone one's skills. But do we really need access to assault weapons whose only purpose is mass murder?
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