Posted by Curt on 31 May, 2007 at 9:05 pm. 17 comments already!


I’m reading lots and lots of clenched fist angry type posts by various conservative bloggers nowadays over this Immigration bill.  This bill definitely deserves it.  A bill that allows those here illegally to remain here and become legal is crap.  Forcing them to pay a fine and to get back at the end of the line isn’t a bad idea but without a real wall, which will keep the next 12 million illegals from coming in this is just a temporary fix….just like Reagan did in the 80’s.

But I also find many on the right are just way to unrealistic on how things really work.  In case you haven’t noticed, we have a Democrat controlled Congress now.  This happened during the last revolt, and now we are reaping those "benefits".   What would those be?  Well the simple fact that no enforcement only bill would get passed by this Congress.  Its not gonna happen.

So what should we do?  Nothing?

I want a wall across the whole border of Mexico, and no "technological" wall either….now that is something I am pissed off about with this bill.  No wall.

And that is why I am endorsing this backlash against the bill and President Bush on this matter.

I endorse the backlash, I endorse the furor (I know, who cares if some blogger endorses it, but I’m just saying….).  But I am not endorsing the burning of RNC cards, like this story pretty much spells out:

The Republican National Committee, hit by a grass-roots donors’ rebellion over President Bush’s immigration policy, has fired all 65 of its telephone solicitors, Ralph Z. Hallow will report Friday in The Washington Times.

Faced with an estimated 40 percent fall-off in small-donor contributions and aging phone-bank equipment that the RNC said would cost too much to update, Anne Hathaway, the committee’s chief of staff, summoned the solicitations staff last week and told them they were out of work, effective immediately, the fired staffers told The Times.

Do you card burners understand we are at war here?  Do you understand what will happen if a Democrat gets into power?  Please, just try to fathom it.  Last time we received a Democrat majority in our Congress.  With a Democrat President we get new liberal SCOTUS judges, taxes through the roof, capitulation to our enemy, the start of a socialized form of government. 

This does nothing but ensure a Democrat comes into power and how will that fix immigration exactly?  It won’t!

People say that this bill will make us less safer since it doesn’t do anything to prevent a terrorist from getting to this country.  But what we have now is not better then what we would have with this bill.

Dafydd wrote a post today in response to Hugh Hewitt’s interview with a immigration bill supporter, and it deals directly with the issue of security:

Suppose the bill passes, and a bunch of illegal immigrants apply for Parole Cards (the provisional Z visas — at least, that’s what Sen. Jon Kyl, R-AZ, 92%, calls them). Hugh’s worry is that among all the Gonzaleses and Ramirezes and Garcias will be hidden a few Mohammeds and Zarqawis… or even a Padilla or two.

Hugh is terrified that these terrorists could also apply for Parole Cards, and then be able to move around the country, get work, and even exit and reenter the United States at will. Of course, they can do that today… but Hugh seems to believe that they’re more likely to be caught and deported today, with no bill, than they would be next year with a bill and Z visas and Parole Cards. (I have no idea what current mechanism for capturing and deporting them Hugh sees; it certainly eludes my sight.)

Let’s carefully break down what is means to exit and reenter the country and to work: The border-crosser must show a passport and a SmartVisa. Specifically, he must swipe the card through a reader; this necessarily creates a record of leaving and reentering. Too, moving from place to place within the U.S. and working also creates a phosphor trail. But so what? How does that help capture terrorists?

Enter the CIA’s old computer connection-tracking program, Total Information Awareness. Congress got hysterical in 2003, defunding it — or so they thought; but it’s widely believed still to be in existence, just shifted under the umbrella of black-ops programs and funded by secret accounts.

The reason it was so effective is that it was simply an object-oriented database data-matching application. It was not programmed with any pre-existing biases for one type of connection above the others; it noted and kept track of any and all connections between datapoints — between Walid the terrorist and Guido the Mafioso, for example. Then it allowed for queries at any level of complexity.

The operators looked for connections where they would not expect to find any. Of course you could find a connection between the Secretary of State and various unsavory political leaders; that’s the secretary’s job. Nobody thinks Condoleezza Rice is in league with Bashar Assad simply because she met with him during a trip to Syria.

But suppose some dentist in Minneapolis calls Zarqawi in Iraq, then is called by a known terrorist in Pakistan, then is spotted by the FBI having lunch with an arms dealer in Minneapolis, then shows up as a co-signer on a loan to buy an airplane, when the other co-signer is a radical imam operating at a mosque out of Idaho.

Those connections are completely unexpected; why would one lousy dentist know all these people? In fact, that pattern is so suspicious that we should initiate surveillance to see what our "dentist" is up to.

But without TIA, the authorities would never have stumbled across the connections because they cross jurisdictional boundaries: The CIA identifies the terrorists abroad; the NSA records the calls; the FBI is tracking the arms dealer; and nobody is paying any attention to the imam. Without a single, unified database to bring all these observations together, nobody would notice the previously unknown dentist at the center of the web.

Now we take the TIA database… and we add to it the Parole Card and Z visa. Suppose we’re looking for Walid Achmed Mohammed, a suspected jihadist who is thought to have sneaked into the United States in 2006 under an unknown alias. Today, we would have no idea where Walid could be found; because he is underground, he could be anywhere, under any name, working for anyone.

We make some educated guesses; let’s suppose, just as Hugh fears, that Walid gets himself a Parole Card so he can move about and in and out.

CIA informants report that Walid was spotted at a "terrorism convention" in Pakistan in January of 2008; then another source believes Walid was at a training and planning session at a safehouse somewhere in Madrid in July. But that’s all we know.

Under today’s rules, that doesn’t help us at all. But under the rules established by this bill, the very first thing we should do is query the TIA database to see which holders of Z visas traveled to Pakistan in January 2008 and to Madrid in July of 2008… I’d bet there were not that many. (Check not only direct routes but the roundabout routes that terrorists tend to use; the CIA is actually pretty good at that nowadays.)

Then you take that list of Social-Security numbers, winnow out the obvious non-targets, and plug that into the Z-visa employment database. This will tell you where the eight or nine potential "Walids" have worked in the past year. Since the real Walid has no reason to believe he has been outed, he will probably follow the same pattern… criss-crossing the country carrying messages and money and working for the same set of employers along the way.

By staking out each of those employers around the times he usually shows up, we suddenly have a very good plan for grabbing Walid Achmed Mohammed and hustling him off to Gitmo. And the best part is, neither he nor anybody in his cell would have the slightest idea how we did it!

And there you have it; that is just one way that the provisions of this bill could help us catch terrorist infiltrators who are completely unlocatable today. There simply is no disputing that by putting themselves into the database, terrorists become much more likely to be caught.

But what if Walid is afraid of this very scenario, so he does not get a Parole Card? But if that’s the case, his movements will be severely impeded… because we will require anyone crossing our borders (whether by car, boat, or airplane) to show not only a foreign passport but also some form of visa — whether tourist, student, former illegal (Z visa), guest worker (Y visa), or permanent resident. (For citizens, the United States passport itself could be remade as a smart card, at least including the mag strip or bar code or whatever.) If Walid doesn’t have a visa, or if the name on his passport doesn’t match the visa, he gets caught.

If he tries to get multiple visas, the fingerprints will out him.

And if he doesn’t have a visa that permits working, he will not be able to find a job after this bill is enacted. Again, his operations will be severely impacted, because he will have to rely upon smuggled funds to survive.

An excellent summary of how this bill could help.  I italicize could because it would need to provide the funding necessary to actually do the checks, fund programs such as TIA, and so forth….something this bill makes no mention of. 

Doesn’t mean it should be supported without amendments such as building the damn wall, huge hikes in the amount of money spent on our Border Patrol and other enforcement entities, and one of the better ideas from Hugh Hewitt, a burden of proof on those immigrants coming from countries that openly support the enemy, ie terrorists. 

I am also with Hugh in that they should fix it or kill it. 

But I will not stop supporting the Republican party if they don’t get it done.  Because this war is more important then that.


Check out Patterico’s excellent posts on those we should be spending huge amounts of money deporting.  The criminals.

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