After years of hysteria that included calls to trash the 14th Amendment, we learn there are two-thirds fewer illegal immigrants in the United States today than there were ten years ago. The mighty flood was more of a swollen creek.
The annual inflow of unauthorized immigrants to the United States was nearly two-thirds smaller in the March 2007 to March 2009 period than it had been from March 2000 to March 2005, according to new estimates by the Pew Hispanic Center.
After years of rapid growth, illegal immigration is slowing down in California and across the country, with the stateâ€™s share of the nationâ€™s estimated 11.1 million undocumented immigrants dropping to 23% from 42% in 1990, according to a new study released Tuesday.
The Pew Survey says the illegal immigrant population peaked at around 12 million in 2007 and has been dropping since.
Fewer illegal immigrants came to the U.S. every year between 2007 and 2009 than in the years in the first half of the decade, the study found. About 300,000 illegal immigrants entered the U.S. each year between 2007 and 2009, a drop from the 850,000 new unauthorized immigrants that entered each year between 2000 and 2005.
Our buddy William Teach notes that 300,000 is still too many, but that’s not going to slow to zero as long as the Koch brothers need someone to clean their pools.
What’s more, the biggest decreases have been in the states that have done the most squawking, including Arizona. Greg Sargent says,
The report also offers more evidence that the criticisms of Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer and other Republicans about lax enforcement on behalf of the federal government are overblown, let alone hyperbole about an ongoing “invasion” from across the border. While careful to state that “the data in this report do not allow quantification” of all the factors involved in the decline of the illegal immigrant population, it lists major shifts in the level of immigration enforcement and in enforcement strategies,” as one of the major factors that “undoubtedly contribute to the overall magnitude of immigration flows.”
My question is, what will California do if it can’t scapegoat illegal aliens for its economic crisis? Just go into denial, most probably. Maybe New York should send them some shrinks; I think we have a surplus.
Anyway, I submit this is illustrative of most “issues” emanating from the Right in the past several years. Time and time again, real crises are ignored while the Right gins up phony ones for which they propose radical solutions. In no particular order:
- They gin up a phony Social Security crisis and propose privatization.
- They gin up a phony “out-of-control lawsuits” crisis and persuade most state legislatures to pass “tort reform” laws.
- Oh no! Salt-of-the-earth family farmers are being wiped out by the inheritance tax! Not really, but the Right coined the term “death tax” and eliminated it.
- And need I say … Iraq?
And then there are the phony scandals designed to draw attention away from real issues, such as the “climategate scandal” to discredit the scientific data on global climate change.
Meanwhile, real problems fester. They pooh-poohed the health care crisis for years — America has the best health care system in the world, dontcha know? And all the data saying otherwise is part of the World Communist Conspiracy. The Bush Administration and most of the Right refused to take Islamic terrorism seriously until September 11. Then they quickly took possession of the issue and blamed it all on Bill Clinton.
And the timeline of most of these “issues” goes something like this — somewhere, out of sight, someone with control of vast wealth and with the last name of Koch, Scaife, Bradley, and a few others, identifies a “solution.” Then they put the word out to the vast network of think tanks, media outlets and politicians that they own to sell this “solution” to the public. Then it’s a matter of manufacturing a crisis, either out of whole cloth (as with the “death tax”) or sometimes by seizing on some news item that they can distort (climategate; the McDonald’s coffee episode). Then the Noise Machine goes to work beating the public to death with a highly, um, revised version of the story to make people believe something outrageous happened that didn’t really happen. But the “revised” version of the story will pass into public legend.
Pretty soon a small army of PR firms has created dozens of astroturf organizations, which work together with Fox and other right-wing media outlets to mobilize the, um, “low-information” voters who never quite got the critical thinking thing down. Then, with the right propagandists to lead them, the people will march to the voting booth and vote for more Koch-owned politicians to go to Washington and sell them out. Yee haw.