DACA And The Costs Of Constitutional Short Sellers

Statue_of_Liberty_7500px-Philippine-stock-market-boardBelow is my column in the Hill newspaper on the decision of President Donald Trump to rescind DACA and send the issue back to Congress with a six-month grace period.  While I support some accommodation for those brought here as young children and hope that Congress will pass new legislation, I still view DACA as a flagrantly legislative act by President Barack Obama carried out through his unilateral executive authority.

President Trump’s expected announcement that he is terminating the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program has met with widespread criticism over the potential cost to roughly 800,000 children of undocumented parents. While I agree with the same concern over the status of these individuals, I do not agree with the same criticism of sending DACA back to Congress. DACA was unilaterally ordered by President Obama after Congress refused to approve the program.

Some of us criticized the action as a circumvention of the legislative branch that undermined our system of the separation of powers. But because they liked the result, Democratic members yielded their institutional power to the White House and helped create an unchecked presidency. With Trump using the same authority to pursue his own policies, Democratic leaders now want to radically expand the powers of the judiciary to block an uber presidency of their own making. They have become constitutional short sellers who dump core principles as soon as they raise political costs.

NY-AG-Eric-SchneidermanJPG-745x45083Xj5Zh3_400x400New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.) announced that they would challenge Trump’s decision in federal court. While they declined to give details of this extraordinary challenge, they would presumably be asking a court to say that Trump could not use the same power to rescind DACA that Obama used to create it. Since the power is the same, what remains is the merits of the policy, something courts have long avoided under the political question doctrine. They would have to say that undocumented individuals can be allowed to stay but not ordered to leave by executive order.

In the market, short sellers will sell a security in the belief that its value is declining, allowing them to buy it back later at a lower price for a profit. Constitutional short selling follows the same logic, but instead of undermining a financial asset, they undermine a constitutional system. Democrats want to oppose Trump, willing to yield power to the courts, as they did for the last eight years with regard to the executive branch. The constitutional short seller hopes that by dumping inconvenient principles, they will be able later to regain control of the system. The problem is that, unlike the markets, the constitutional system is not particularly elastic. Such changes can fundamentally alter our government.

The temptation to become a short seller is irresistible for politicians who often find it difficult to see beyond the next election. However, Schneiderman is the highest-ranking lawyer in the state of New York. Rather than articulate a constitutional principle that would negate Trump’s use of the same power used (with his support) by Obama, Schneiderman simply said, “President Trump’s decision to end the DACA program would be cruel, gratuitous and devastating to tens of thousands of New Yorkers, and I will sue to protect them.”

President_Barack_ObamaDuring the previous administration, I testified repeatedly about the dangers of the unilateral actions taken by Obama (whom I voted for in 2008). Two years ago, I even wrote a column warning that Democrats should consider the prospect of these same powers under health care and immigration being wielded by a President Trump rather than a President Obama. Yet, in one of the strangest demonstrations in history, Democrats rapturously applauded when Obama said that he would simply circumvent their branch because Congress did not yield to his demands for DACA and other measures.

From a constitutional perspective, it looked like a mosh pit of self-loathing members, politicians eager to be declared a functional non-entity in our tripartite (now bipartite) system. Unable to yield more authority to the executive branch, these politicians would now inflate the power of the courts to check a president. Imagine if a federal court gave Schneiderman what he wants. A federal judge could simply declare that an executive order is “gratuitous” or too “devastating” to be allowed. What would have been the reaction if a federal judge declared DACA to be gratuitous or cruel to those who are awaiting entry into the country legally? We would have uber judges to match our uber president.

220px-James_MadisonI am admittedly a Madisonian scholar and a constitutional formalist. I believe strongly in the role of Congress in legislation and clear lines of separation between the branches. The separation of powers protects us from the concentration of authority in the hands of a single president or a few jurists. James Madison saw Congress as a way to force majoritarian compromise out of our factional divisions. Sometimes when the country is deeply divided, less gets done until we can reach a consensus. It sometimes takes time, which is a finite and dwindling commodity for presidents. The process is not pretty or easy, but it has one thing to recommend it: We are still here. It is the balance of the three branches that has brought us stability through economic to social to political upheavals.

Trump’s decision will return this question to where it should have remained: Congress. Presidents do not have the option to go it alone in our system. Obama failed to pass DACA in Congress, and he was left with only two choices. He had to either compromise or change Congress. Sometimes when the country is politically divided, less gets done until we can reach a consensus. However, that consensus is found in the legislative process, not through presidential or judicial proclamations.

Where Obama used this authority to circumvent Congress on DACA, Trump is using it to return DACA to Congress. After failing to pass this program earlier, members may now be able to succeed by reaching a compromise with their Republican colleagues. Regardless of the outcome, however, the importance of re-establishing an equal legislative branch is paramount for our system and our future. As for Schneiderman, he should rethink his challenge before more constitutional short sales turn a great Constitution into a worthless penny stock.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. You can follow him on Twitter @JonathanTurley.

254 thoughts on “DACA And The Costs Of Constitutional Short Sellers

  1. Here in eastern Washington state seasonal workers are required during the harvest season. Those who don’t know the situation shouldn’t comment if they don’t want to be taken as the fool…

  2. “I still view DACA as a flagrantly legislative act by President Barack Obama carried out through his unilateral executive authority.”
    ____________________________________________________________________________________

    Obama cannot have “carried out” legislation which is unconstitutional.

    That is a non sequitur.

    ICE must ignore unconstitutional acts and illegal orders, and deport illegal aliens.

    DACA? Seriously?

    DACA will never be constitutional and Obama will never be eligible for the office of president.

    Is there a judicial branch in America capable of reading the documents it is sworn to uphold?

    Most judges and justices should be impeached for malicious dereliction.

    DACA should have been struck down immediately by a tweet from the Supreme Court.

    Somebody should go down there and wake up the geriatric ward.

    • DACA is A fraud and violating us constitution it’s not legislation is an crime bigots attorney general Jeff Sessions same crime when send to congress to repaired a dreams crime sedition to impose by impostor Obama II with abuse of executive order totalitarian by pay Us taxpayers and against national interest 50 sovereign states forms USA republic One Country One Nation We together build the nation, We all American are equal before the law, We in us constitution Trust.

      In effect, the congress bicameral at us capitol only make legislation for national interest 50 sovereign states who elected representatives & senators for make only laws legislation for national interest of the country for Americans dreams recovery not for crime and treason DACA crime. Them have not power to designated the president each 4 years in an criminal electoral college with monster violation XII Amendment written and ratified by 50 sovereign states to give legality and legitimacy and constitutional authority power for four years exercise terms. The congress have not authority to confirmed your own supreme judges illegal and unconstitutional linking criminal elite conservative and liberal of traitors (all American people are equal before the laws , its mandatory in USA republic) that nominate of president of fact of turn, then are Act and Fact violators of constitution written to protect us freedom and defend USA republic not interpretable for any official.

      In effect, the congress bicameral and president of facto are flagrantly to violated us contitituion and assassinate the power independence between branch legislative, Judi a land executive then than its have not the work of the democracy and institutional life of the democratic it’s fatal we are under a tyranny of representatives and senators elected para represented each sovereign states only make legislate the laws to the country.

      We The People American reject current tyranny of criminal cartel GOP and DNC consensus of traitors.

      ‪@POTUS rescind DACA sedition qualifying from unconstitutional is another treason same executive order impostor @BarackObama free of charge And exacerbating violence in street.‬

      ‪DACA pure sedition impose by BO now was been rescinded by unconstitutional so @AGOWA must to prosecute @POTUS44 FOR violated constitution and go to Guantanamo prison by treasons.‬

      The congress not repairs an dreamer criminal the congress only recovery American dreams violentated by criminal cartel @GOP @DNC linking elite conservative and liberal of traitors who designated president supplant inalienable right of votes will secret and appointed your own judges to breaking power independence to assessinate the work of democracy and institututionsly of life democratic for seeking of destroyed America union 50 sovereign states one country one nation We together build the nation, we all American citizens are equal before the law, We In US constitution trust. constitutions.com

      • Mariano Loo – English is not your first language is it? I am having trouble deciding which side you actually are on. Could you write it in your first language and then run it through a translator? Maybe that would help. I think you are making a point, just not sure what it is.

  3. The monster that illegal immigration has become must be addressed. President Reagan gave what he declared “one time amnesty” in 1984. Instead of curbing the problem, this only exacerbated it exponentially. By definition, the so-called “dreamers” came here after that order. It’s not an easy problem to address, because, on the one hand, young children brought here illegally did nothing wrong and have established lives and relationships they want to maintain. On the other hand, we essentially have no means of enforcement for our immigration laws.

    I see it sort of like feeding wildlife: as long as food is readily available, they’ll keep coming. Fences can’t keep out bears or even alligators if they can still get to food. The same is true of a multi-billion dollar wall. How many of them came over the border on foot, anyway? There are multiple stories about trucks filled with illegals that drove across the border. Sometimes, people die in the process. I say attack the root cause, which is employers who hire them. If there is no available work, they won’t come here. Dis-incentivize hiring illegals. Require proof of a valid Social Security Number before hiring anyone, and have a hotline available 24-7 to validate the SSN, instead of waiting for the “no match” letter. If employers were heavily, and I mean really heavily, fined for hiring them, and if required licenses and permits could be revoked for hiring them, and if enforcement were targeted toward employers, the problem would stop. They aren’t hard to find: go to any hotel, restaurant, landscaping, housekeeping, janitorial, nanny or other business hiring low-skill labor. Any business that requires a license or permit for, as an example, to collect sales tax, could be shut down for hiring them. Warn them and then do it big-scale. Shut down the Hiltons and Comfort Inns, if necessary. You have to make it more costly and risky to hire illegals versus Americans. Until this is done, it’s all rhetoric. This is just for starters. You could require schools to turn them in, too, or face having funds cut off. Have ICE show up at their specialty grocery stores and other businesses that cater to them. It really isn’t hard to find them. I do know for a fact that some national restaurant chains have a lawyer hotline to call if ICE shows up. They know exactly what they are doing and have a strategy for addressing attempts at enforcement.

    Problem is, Republicans will not do this, because too many businesses employ them and they cost less than hiring American workers. They’ll put up with unsafe, unsanitary and other undesirable working conditions without complaining or making workers comp claims. Big business is getting rich off of them. So, I don’t see the problem getting solved, but as long as Trump can blame President Obama and bitch about the illegals to his base, he’ll get as much political mileage out of this as he can. However, ultimately, if the day comes when there are deportation squads as Trump says, people will be hurt; however, that was the risk of coming here knowing they are breaking the law. The real problem is employers who hire them. Why won’t Republicans acknowledge this and address it? Because that’s there their campaign contributions come from. We either have to give up enforcing our laws or hurt people. No two ways about it. It’s a problem that has been in the making for decades, but so long as businesses aren’t punished for hiring them, nothing will change.

    • Well, new Natacha, we shall see. The spotlight is on the repubs now to make something. I’m sure they are not happy about it either. They can’t offer up a solution that is a win-win. They’re going to take their beating from one side or the other.

      It’s about time for that though. Those well-insured deadbeats now have to pony-up.

      • Has any politician publicly said what I said: that the real problem is the employers who hire them, and that nothing will change until or unless the incentive for hiring them is taken away? No. Don’t look for it, either. The Democrats oppose enforcement on humanitarian grounds. The Republicans oppose it because their wealthier constituents are profiting from it. Until this is admitted and something is done about it, there’s not much use in complaining about it. As a show, ICE will round up some of them and deport them, but no major, large-scale changes will happen unless businesses are targeted, fined and punished for hiring them. Trump will push for the wall because this appeals to his base and it appears that symbolically our southern border is being protected, but there are still many other ways to enter, and this will do nothing about the multiple millions already here. It still doesn’t address the DACA problem.

        One other thing: Mexico is taking so many factory jobs away from Americans that there are now good-paying jobs there that weren’t there in the past. Living there wouldn’t be that bad. As to those who have obtained college educations here, a well-educated person will succeed wherever he or she goes.

        • “The Democrats oppose enforcement on humanitarian grounds.”

          Oh puhleeze ! The democrats sole interest is their voter rolls and cheap labor. Where ever do you get your news?

          Good news though – the Mexican government is opening its doors to its own people. Mexican Presidential front-runner, AMLO, responded today to DACA decision: “Mexico’s doors are open!” (now that Americans have fed, clothed, housed, and educated them)

          I hope they go home.

        • The Democrats oppose enforcement on humanitarian grounds.

          Democrats oppose it because Leave-No-Social-Worker-Behind (and we need more postal ballots to steal the next Minnesota Senate race).

        • CA is moving in the entirely different direction than enforcing our current laws that penalize employers for hiring illegal aliens. Many cities allow day laborers, who are almost exclusively illegal, to loiter in corners they’ve claimed to find work. Only illegal alien day laborers and the homeless are allowed to loiter, no one else. These corners drive businesses to close or at least lose significant revenue, because most shoppers do not want to be mobbed with day laborers the second they pull up.

          Although some companies do use eVerify, it is not enforced for most employers. In order to compete in many businesses here in CA, a great many employers hire illegal aliens. They have become the serf class, created by Democrats, who enjoy none of the benefits that people vote for. A landscaper who exclusively employs illegal aliens can dramatically underbid a landscaper who exclusively hires legal residents or citizens. He has to pay them more, and therefor charge his customers more. And customers will almost always go with the cheapest option. That is true of nannies, house cleaning, remodeling, etc. The money is under the table, and therefor there is no way for the government to even track it, if it was willing to do so, and CA is certainly not. This makes it difficult for legal businesses to compete.

          Identity theft is one of the most common crimes committed by illegal aliens. Not only do they steal the identity of others, but they also will sometimes all share the ID of the one relative or friend who is a legal resident or naturalized citizen. That’s really hard for an employer to catch.

          In addition, CA has enacted other inducements, such as giving drivers licenses to illegal aliens, giving illegal aliens taxpayer subsidized auto insurance with a lower coverage than required for legal residents or citizens, removing proof of legal residency as a requirement for many benefits, forms, or enrollment in school, no ID required to vote, no audit of the voting rolls for illegal aliens allowed (that’s racist), providing social services to illegal aliens, petitioning last year to offer subsidized Obamacare to illegal aliens, in state tuition to illegal aliens, sanctuary cities, refusal to cooperate with ICE even for violent felons, a law that actually removed the word “alien” from the labor code, the repeal of Prop 187 which denied public services to illegals, passing a law that would allow work permits to be given to illegals…It is absolutely staggering the sum of all ways in which California has catered to illegal aliens. So much so, in fact, that I do not blame illegal aliens in the slightest for coming here illegally. How can I possibly blame them when CA rolls out the red carpet and hands out swag bags? Why in the world would anyone who lived nearby in Mexico bother with the cumbersome legal immigration system?

          And now, we’ve far surpassed the tipping point. It is political suicide here in CA for any politician to oppose illegal immigration or try to rein back this cornucopia of benefits. There are already more Latinos than Caucasians in CA, which makes them a crucial voting block. Illegal immigration has occurred at such a large scale that it universally changed the politics and voting structure of the entire state. Even though politicians may know this is wrong, they cannot get anywhere politically if they oppose the Latinos, and the Latinos want illegal immigration.

          As usual, any efforts to remove illegal aliens from either voting rolls or employment are greeted with accusations from the hard Left of racism.

          I do agree that we need to dry up the lures to illegal immigration. Make the wrong thing difficult and the right thing, going through the legal system, easier. There is nothing we can do in CA now that Latinos make up the largest voting bloc, and they want illegal immigration. If illegal immigration continues at this pace, then one day, every single state in the union will face the same problem – there will be enough illegal aliens in the country that voters will absolutely refuse to enforce voting laws. The cartels are already freely running the black market here, and that will only get worse. One day, our border will change to a region, and we will have the same crushing poverty and crime that drove immigrants here in the first place. We’ll just be like anywhere else.

          Legal immigration helps keep criminals out, and keeps numbers to a level that we may absorb regarding the environment, resources, benefits, and culture.

    • Natacha, your stance on immigration seems to be agreeable to a lot of people on both sides of the isle. I would consider adding a guest worker program and ceasing all entitlement benefits to illegals and illegals related to the guest workers. Employers should be paying for their employees health insurance or be held responsible for all the costs.

      I’m willing to pay more in wages for those occupations where a lot of illegal immigrants work, but we shouldn’t be using a selective process to pay the illegal’s total benefit package less than what an American citizen would get.

      If the Democrats and Republicans come up with a bill that locks the border tight then I don’t thnk we will have any problem letting the Dreamers that wish to remain to remain, but they must have jobs, pay taxes and not be receiving entitlements. Eventually then all good Dreamers can probably be integrated into society. The hold up is that many want the borders shut tight to illegals and some want to leave the law vague and the borders porous.

        • Sure. Then let’s filter them by the country their illegal parents and perhaps themselves prove their allegiance to. All of those that are in this country illegally that want to display their allegiance to their country of origin forfeit any objection to deportation.

          That would be compassionate, would it not?

              • That would be the least they should do.

                I’d say the same of the media, the arts-and-sciences faculty, the teacher-training faculty, the social work faculty, the mental health trade, and those working in higher-ed administration. (Most of whom reside here for the salaries).

      • I would consider adding a guest worker program

        The ideal # of ‘guest workers’ = 0. Import settlers, not a servant corps. If you can’t make an enterprise pay using domestic labor, that’s an indicator that comparative advantage has migrated abroad.

        • It’s a reasonable point, but some jobs are seasonal or may not be permanent. Today we have green cards where people are permitted to work even though they intend to go home so, though I am not an expert on the legalities, it appears we already have some type of guest worker program.

          Appropriate immigration laws for people that wish to move her should be our primary concern.

          • It’s a reasonable point, but some jobs are seasonal or may not be permanent.

            Hire 19 year olds enrolled in school.

                • It is preferable for labor to be citizens of the US, but not a necessity that all laborers be citizens. Thus one can recruit non-citizen labor if that meets our needs. Sometimes that type of labor might be better than automating or shifting the product mix.

                  • “meets our needs”

                    That’s the hole in your argument, the slippery slope, the ever-expanding vague definition. My need is a servant to grab my DQ shake everyday (assuming I could actually do that without becoming 300 pounds).

                    • Slohrss29, There is nothing unconstitutional with guest workers and might be an advantage to the nation (might not as well, that is a debate one can have). Legislation of this type is passed everyday so that is not a “hole” in the argument.

                  • Again, ‘needs’ incorporates an implicit purpose. We have no existential need to be growing pecans in this country. If you cannot hire seasonal domestic labor to harvest them at a wage which makes for a cost structure allowing a salable price, it’s just another crop best imported.

                    • Doesn’t make sense to me. If pecans produce the highest net revenue for the use of the land, all other things being equal, and temporary labor is needed to harvest the pecans what is wrong?

                    • You’ve got a ready seasonal labor force in the youth population. The question is, is it worth it to you to hire them?

                    • “You’ve got a ready seasonal labor force in the youth population. The question is, is it worth it to you to hire them?”

                      Let’s get back to my prior response, “If pecans produce the highest net revenue for the use of the land, all other things being equal, and temporary labor is needed to harvest the pecans what is wrong?”

                      What do you do if the youth are not willing or able to do the job? It strikes me that your response is based more upon unemployed people becoming too reliant upon government subsidies and entitlements. If that is the case then the underlying problem is the subsidies and entitlements not the guest worker.

                    • allan – in most states there is year round school so the youth labor force is out as a viable source. You would have to convince the schools to go back to the old system and change some child labor laws.

                    • Let’s get back to my prior response, “If pecans produce the highest net revenue for the use of the land, all other things being equal, and temporary labor is needed to harvest the pecans what is wrong?”

                      And we’ll go back to my implicit answer: you have multiple factors of production. Land is just one. There is also capital and there is labor. (And, further articulated, R & D and natural resources).

                      What do you do if the youth are not willing or able to do the job? It strikes me that your response is based more upon unemployed people becoming too reliant upon government subsidies and entitlements. If that is the case then the underlying problem is the subsidies and entitlements not the guest worker/i>

                      No, my response is based on the presupposition that if fruit growers offer the wage, they’ll get the workforce. The question is whether they can entice the young to work for them without having to raise compensation to such an extent that they have no net income.

                    • DSS – Arizona uses the year around model for school, with school broken into sections with a fall break, winter break, spring break and summer break. None of the breaks would be long enough for students to work in fields on crops. At this point, in Arizona, it is adults or machinery in the field. Citrus picking is at least a five person job, it cannot be done by machinery yet. Cotton is all done by machine and has been for at least 50 years. Alfalfa is all machinery but the irrigation is hand done and it takes someone with experience. We do three alfalfa crops a years. Corn (two crops a year) is all machinery. Horses are labor intensive, especially in this heat. The dairy farms are all computerized so they know exactly when each cow is ready to breed and the production is both mechanical and labor intensive.

                      However, we don’t have the Imperial Valley, which really can use occasional labor to pick. It is important to visit the Imperial Valley to see what their challenge is.

                    • “And we’ll go back to my implicit answer: you have multiple factors of production. Land is just one. There is also capital and there is labor. “

                      Implicit answer, economic:

                      Good DSS, but let us get back to the question, if considering all these factors and pecans still produce the highest net revenue, then what is wrong with guest workers harvesting pecans? This doesn’t appear to be primarily an economic problem.

                      So what is the real issue? Social et. al., not really economic (though economics plays a part). To define it further I think the real issue is comparitive costs to the employer (that exclude costs to the nation) between the citizen and the guest worker. I touched upon that in another response.

                      “ if fruit growers offer the wage, they’ll get the workforce.”

                      That may or may not be true.

                      If it is not true then perhaps the guest worker does no harm.

                      If it is true then one has to explore what makes it true and explore the real cause not the causes that branch off of the real cause. Elsewhere I wrote that in this transaction the American worker ought not be put at a disadvantage to the guest worker. I don’t want to go in 20 different directions so I will let you better define where your concerns lie. Most likely we will find considerable agreement.

                    • Not repetitious at all and I am surprised that you do not recognize the present distinctions I outlined. You are making broad based claims that need to be analyzed and broken down into groups of concerns, economic, social, etc. For some reason you hesitate in doing that and I have to therefore presume that your argument fails when one gets to the details. This failure is both for the economic questions and the social questions that arrise.

                      You have denied that “pecan farmer” the use of his property and lost its value of production without solving the social problem which seems to be the cause of your present inability to deal with the reality o the situation.

                    • Not repetitious at all

                      You state a proposition. A reply is offered. You ignore the reply and restate the original proposition. It’s a bore.

                      Good DSS, but let us get back to the question, if considering all these factors and pecans still produce the highest net revenue,

                      Again, your conclusion is in the premise, and the premise is that you should be able to import labor and avail yourself of that cost structure. If you cannot import labor, you have to avail yourself of the cost structure inherent in your domestic labor force. With that cost structure, pecans may be an optimal use or they may not.

                      That may or may not be true.

                      You’re not on an island in the Pacific. You’re in a country which has 250 million people in it over the age of 16.

                      You have denied that “pecan farmer” the use of his property

                      I’ve done nothing of the kind. I’ve denied the pecan farmer a franchise to import labor from Guatemala. He can use his land for whatever productive purpose he can think of. He just cannot make an end-run around the cost structure inherent in employing domestic labor. The same standard applies to all of his competitors and to any commercial enterprise.

                    • “ A reply is offered. You ignore the reply and restate the original proposition. “

                      DSS, If you actually replied to the content I wouldn’t have to repeat or expand on the content. Perhaps you intentionally are trying to avoid having to prove your social theories. You prefer to say ‘guest workers are bad’ and have everyone accept that as true. I expect you to prove your contentions under the circumstances I have defined and those circumstances relieves society of major costs while placing those costs onto the business.

                      Calling the other person a bore is merely your way of pretending that alternative ideas do not exist and should not exist in your small world.

                      You follow with a laborious explanation about one’s conclusions, but it really says very little. The market will determine if pecans are worthwhile growing, but you wish to starve the owner of labor even if that labor doesn’t negatively affect society and helps provide tax revenues as a bonus.

                      We then get to your abysmal response “ if fruit growers offer the wage, they’ll get the workforce.”

                      If there is no labor force available for picking the fruit because it is seasonal or there is lack of experience then the fruit will die. It is true that with time a labor force can develop if one pays enough, but, is one then taking higher skilled labor and using it for low skill low productive work that negatively affects the GDP? Not everyone wants a job even if it pays relatively well.

                      “He just cannot make an end-run around the cost structure inherent in employing domestic labor.”

                      I’m not asking that he be permitted an end-run around the cost structure. I want him to have a fair shot. If we had full employment he has to get his crops picked and you are telling people to shift the chairs on the titanic as if that will add chairs and prevent drowning.

                      There is a social problem created by society that is not of the pecan farmer’s doing. That is a problem society has to face, but you are unwilling to deal with that side of the coin being happy telling everyone else what they must do, thereby interfering with a free marketplace.

                      Additionally You are avoiding the issues.

                    • If there is no labor force available for picking the fruit because it is seasonal or there is lack of experience then the fruit will die.

                      There is no point in making policy according to thought experiments which are false.

                    • Additionally You are avoiding the issues.

                      I’ve state the issues quite clearly. You’ve engaged in a great deal of hand-waving.

                    • Allan Wrote: Additionally “You are avoiding the issues.”
                      DSS responds: “I’ve state the issues quite clearly. You’ve engaged in a great deal of hand-waving.”

                      That is not true DSS. You deflected the issues and refused to deal with the social and economic issues as a package. You let the pecan farmer die, did nothing to solve the social issue, and sacrificed the interests of the United States by not utilizing its resources in the best fashion possible.

                    • Allan wrote: “If there is no labor force available for picking the fruit because it is seasonal or there is lack of experience then the fruit will die.”

                      DSS responds: “There is no point in making policy according to thought experiments which are false.”

                      That is totally untrue. It is not a false point. You are promoting a social theory. I am promoting an economic solution tied to social problems so that American workers will have the opportunity to compete for jobs that today are frequently held by illegal or perhaps legal migrant workers. I am adding to the burden of the employer the social costs involved with foreign labor. That permits an American workforce to enter the field and permits the pecan provider to survive all while using American resources at the highest level of use.

              • Allan,

                You may have missed my response to Enigma earlier in the thread. Cape lobster shacks and other restaurants always complain when they can’t have easy access to imported labor, and they gripe about the MA minimum wage. But we do have a population of high schoolers and unemployed adults throughout the Cape who need jobs, and making a business work while paying min. wage also isn’t an issue. My son worked as a cook at a burger joint in Woods Hole for two summers; rose through the ranks to be considered Asst. Manager. I guarantee you the people hopping the ferry to the Vineyard could care less that you’re charging them an extra $0.50 per steak-and-cheese sub because minimum wage went up. My son’s employer was among the more generous; others around here are misers. Cape tourists are a captive audience. If these businesses can’t make it under current conditions (seasonal or no), then their managers are incompetent.

                • Cape, Woods Hole always attracted me because of the eclectic mix of people. Local fishermen, ferry hoppers and MIT oceanographers.

                  • Nick, you got it. You get all kinds here; preppies, clammers, cyclists, golfers, cinemaphiles, and then top-drawer scientists holding that weave all together.

                • Cape Cod, I am not advocating that our laws favor businesses over employment for our own citizens. Quite the contrary, for when they are registered the business can be held more accountable for collecting taxes including social security taxes, social costs such as healthcare etc. Businesses need a level playing field and doing this makes a clear distinction between illegals and those here legally to work. Of course that means heavy law enforcement on those not following the law and responsibility of the business to pay for healthcare and other social costs relieving that responsibility from government.

                  • Hey, I get it and I’m not trying to argue you with you. And there is a difference between illegals doing work and H-2B visa holders doing work. But after living in CA and seeing the situation there and a similar (but not identical) situation here on the Cape, I lean more towards DSS’s point of view: no imported labor. As a society we can adjust to that over time. “Businesses need a level playing field and doing this makes a clear distinction between illegals and those here legally to work.” You were originally talking about a guest worker program, which I assume would encompass migrant agricultural work, but other than that what businesses need a level playing field?

                    • ” But after living in CA and seeing the situation there ”

                      Cape Cod, I don’t see this as an argument, rather a refining of positions. llegals do not belong here and it is their illegality that becomes the problem.The nation ends up paying for all sorts of social costs just to keep the price of a product down. Most of the things I am concerned about have to do with agricullture.

                      All businesses need a level playing field. That means they all work under the same rules.

                    • Allan, yes, I agree, my comment about my position is not an argument, just how I feel. I used to be 2L4O. I used to be sympathetic to illegal immigrants. I am not sympathetic anymore. Not because I am heartless, but because I have seen the effects firsthand of significant presence of illegal immigrants, not only in the public schools but elsewhere. Karen S describes CA quite well. It’s easy to think we should grant amnesty if you never have to pay the price for that political decision. People will game whatever system they are presented with, so I guess I’m cynical that what you are suggesting is a solution will work. I need to give it more thought. Have a good night!

                    • You too Cape Cod.The incentives are a motivating force, so one has to use the appropriate incentives to move people in the right direction. I think DSS is not being totally consistent. It appears he may have moved from an economic issue to a social one. If that is the case one has to make sure they define the problem correctly instead of attacking those things one on first glance may not like where that dislike is based upon other actions. One has to attack at the source not at the branches that keep popping up all the time.

        • DSS – when I first moved to Arizona in the early 1960s, they had a ‘bracero’ program which allowed Mexican workers to work the fields in the Imperial Valley and then return to Mexico when the season was done. It was pretty structured. Sadly, they got rid of the program. This is the type of program you might consider.

          • I’ll consider nothing of the sort. Tell the growers in the Imperial Valley to hire locally, automate, or grow something else.

            Mexicans wishing to settle in the United States should appear at a consulate, submit to a physical, provide information for a background check, and submit to an English proficiency test. If they pass the tests, they are issued a spot in a global queue. If they get married, their spouse is added to the visa and their position in the queue is adjusted rearward accordingly. If they have children, the same procedure applies. If they marry an American citizen living in Mexico, their position is adjusted forward. If they sire or bear a legitimate child by an American citizen, their position in the queue is adjusted forward accordingly. When they reach the head of the queue, they are assessed again; if a person on the visa has committed a crime known to the consulate, a cooling-off period is imposed which may require a postponement of their entry. If their entry is not so postponed. they’re welcome to enter the United States at such time as every person on the visa over 14 has passed an English proficiency test (if they haven’t done so in the previous four years).

            And, when they arrive in the United States, they are welcome to work in seasonal harvests if they so choose.

              • I’m familiar with it and have been for a generation. I’m against the importation of labor. Period. It is socially corrupting.

                • “It is socially corrupting.”

                  This is a non economic idea and I can understand a concern, but I think it would be nice for you to further define how you believe it to be socially corrupting. It is often said that entitlements are socially corrupting. The same can be said for the minimum wage.. Many will say that a man’s property is his and if he wishes to hire a person from across the border that interfering with his property rights is socially corrupting.

                  I guess this gets down to your personal ideology and whether or not you are consistent.

                  • What it amounts to doing is importing a servant class to do work your own people are disinclined to do because the aspirant employers don’t wish to pay them the reserve wage. An extreme example of this might be South Africa, wherein you had a 1st world society perched atop a 3d world populace (and the use of domestic servants was bog standard).

                    Bracero programs and the like are troubling as well because they commonly restrict labor mobility. That’s asking for trouble.

                    • “What it amounts to doing is importing a servant class to do work your own people are disinclined to do…”

                      There is nothing intrinsically wrong with this half of the idea. Many people hire others to act in this capacity.

                      “because the aspirant employers don’t wish to pay them the reserve wage.”

                      Back to the real issue, the social entitlement issue. What determines the wages an American worker is willing to accept? That is the key. However, there are many ways of leveling out this issue of “the reserve wage” so that that the flow of labor depends upon manpower requirements and not the social issues you seem to be talking about.

                    • Allan, there is something intrinsically wrong with that idea if the workers you’re importing are either leaving families behind or bringing their families with them. In the first case, it promotes the breakdown of familial bonds and leaves one spouse to bear the burden of raising the children; in the second, it puts all kinds of pressure on the welfare state and public goods (like education, police and fire protection, etc.) Not to mention, if the imported workers do not integrate well into society, unrest ensues. DSS argues that the fruit grower must be able to pay a local labor pool an adequate wage so that they will pick the fruit, while still able to make enough profit to ensure current & future success. Econ 101; so far, so good. So did importing cheap labor from Mexico predate upper middle-class teenagers eschewing manual labor jobs? Or was it the reverse? Somebody here must know, but the fact remains that employers prefer a labor pool over which they have the whip hand. We all know who that is. DSS has talked about competition for workers and I agree with him. Anecdotally, when we lived in CA, we could buy 40# of Valencia oranges for $12 from the farmer’s markets near the orange groves. Granted, that’s ripe fruit, needs to sell quickly, and stuff shipped across the country will get a better price, but that’s ridiculously small $. Has anyone done a study on how much food waste in the US is tied to low food prices vis a vis cheap imported labor?

                    • What determines the wage the worker is willing to accept is what is available elsewhere in his commuting range. The fruit grower is competing with low-level service employment. He has to pay a premium which compensates for (1) the disagreeable nature of the work, (2) the shoe leather costs assumed by a selection of his workers who have to find other employment when the season ends and (3) whatever the differential is between the fringes offered by his competitors and what he can offer given that his workforce is protean and there’s is less so. These considerations apply quite generally. You want to use this discussion to bit** about ‘the welfare state’, but you could go all Ayn Rand and you’d still have these issues.

                    • There is nothing intrinsically wrong with this half of the idea. Many people hire others to act in this capacity.

                      No they don’t. They import labor when the law allows them to. It may allow them to de facto or de jure. It should not allow them at all.

                    • “No they don’t. They import labor when the law allows them to.”

                      There is nothing wrong with increasing one’s profit and the GDP by hiring people from other places when an available workforce doesn’t exist in one’s locality whether it be across state lines or across national borders.

                    • Did you forget that need is an essential determinant?

                      The economics are easy. The solutions to the social problems are hard. In order to avoid both of these problems your answer is to bankrupt the pecan farmer. The availability of labor does not mean they are able and willing to do a particular job. That isn’t the pecan farmer’s fault. It is at least partly society’s fault so while you are attempting to fix the problem I will permit the pecan farmer to survive and add to the GDP by hiring guest workers, just like every major company in the US hires temporary workers or specialized workers from abroad.

                    • There is nothing wrong with increasing one’s profit and the GDP by hiring people from other places when an available workforce doesn’t exist in one’s locality whether it be across state lines or across national borders.

                      Yes, there is something wrong if you’re manufacturing a servant class. And that’s what you’re doing.

                    • Did you forget that need is an essential determinant?

                      All references to ‘needs’ in this discussion are humbug.

                      The economics are easy. The solutions to the social problems are hard. In order to avoid both of these problems your answer is to bankrupt the pecan farmer.

                      No, my answer is that the pecan farmer and every other employer has to abide by certain standards, standards which do not have compliance requirements difficult to implement. Every employer operates in product markets and factor markets which incorporate constraints. Companies go out of business every year. It’s a disruption in the life of the proprietors and sometimes a personal tragedy. They go out of business because the market dries up, because they cannot get credit, because of specific problems in their product line or delivery system, because they made capital investments which haven’t panned out &c.

                      There’s no special pathos in the problems facing employers who want to hire imported workers. It’s just that the milk of human kindness flows from you to them and not to any other party.

                    • Cape Cod:

                      “Allan, there is something intrinsically wrong with that idea if the workers you’re importing are either leaving families behind”

                      I know and when that American submarine commander is on duty for months at a time his family is at home.

                      ” or bringing their families with them.”

                      Guest workers do not have to bring families, but I wouldn’t consider that to be a rule.

                      “it puts all kinds of pressure on the welfare state and public goods (like education, police and fire protection, etc.)”

                      This is an argument I agree with and I believe the business bringing in the guest worker should have full financial responsibility for all these costs until the guest worker leaves.

                      “Not to mention, if the imported workers do not integrate well into society, unrest ensues.”

                      That is a problem with granting citizenship to people as well. Demographically we need immigration as the fertility rate of non immigrant Americans is a bit low to maintain population.

                      “teenagers eschewing manual labor jobs? Or was it the reverse?”

                      One can’t tell, but as I have already stated I am not advocating that the business use workers from abroad because they are less costly. I am trying to balance that out by making businesses responsible for social costs. If that responsibility increases costs, so be it.

                    • Allan writes: “There is nothing wrong with increasing one’s profit and the GDP by hiring people from other places when an available workforce doesn’t exist in one’s locality whether it be across state lines or across national borders.”

                      DSS responds: “Yes, there is something wrong if you’re manufacturing a servant class. And that’s what you’re doing.”

                      DSS, you are promoting social theory and that is biting you in the A$$. Since it is your theory I will have to have you provide your definition of “servant class”. People serve others all the time, housekeepers, drivers and even our public servants that supposedly serve the people. I guess we could call these guest workers “temporary servants”.

                    • “All references to ‘needs’ in this discussion are humbug.”

                      What other response can we expect when you believe your social theories are supposed to be taken on faith like others accept the Bible?

                      Allan says:“In order to avoid both of these problems your answer is to bankrupt the pecan farmer.”

                      DSS responds: “No …” etc., etc., and so on.

                      You wish that the employer abide by standards and I have offered such standards over and over again that balance out the social cost problems, but you go off on tangents. Any discussion of guest workers interferes with your faith based social theories.

                      “It’s just that the milk of human kindness flows from you to them and not to any other party.”

                      A bunch of BS You have telescopic vision where you believe your social theories are the center of the universe. You haven’t proven your case or why what I have said is wrong. I am sure you have faith based adherents to your type of philosophy, but I think the rest still believe the world is round.

                    • People serve others all the time, housekeepers, drivers and even our public servants that supposedly serve the people. I guess we could call these guest workers “temporary servants”.

                      Their presence in the country is not contingent on their agreement with a given employer or with a labor broker. The wage labor they are performing is a selection from a number of alternatives. They have families here and are rooted here. The distinction is not that difficult to understand.

                    • You wish that the employer abide by standards and I have offered such standards over and over again that balance out the social cost problems, but you go off on tangents. Any discussion of guest workers interferes with your faith based social theories.

                      Assessing the evolution of German and Swiss society during the post-war period, the evolution of South African society from the Great Trek down to 1994, and the evolution of American society since 1965 do not require anything faith-based.

                    • Allan writes: “You wish that the employer abide by standards and I have offered such standards over and over again that balance out the social cost problems, but you go off on tangents. Any discussion of guest workers interferes with your faith based social theories.”

                      DSS responds: “Assessing the evolution of German and Swiss society during the post-war period, the evolution of South African society from the Great Trek down to 1994, and the evolution of American society since 1965 do not require anything faith-based.”

                      You have again gone off on a tangent that does not pertain to the discussion at hand. It might pertain if we were discussing open borders, but we are not. We are discussing closed borders and use of guest workers whose social costs are paid by the employer until they leave the country.

                    • Allan wrote:”People serve others all the time, housekeepers, drivers and even our public servants that supposedly serve the people. I guess we could call these guest workers “temporary servants”.”

                      DSS responds: “Their presence in the country is not contingent on their agreement with a given employer or with a labor broker. The wage labor they are performing is a selection from a number of alternatives. They have families here and are rooted here. The distinction is not that difficult to understand.”

                      Your present reply isn’t even talking about guest workers who enter the nation legally and leave after a set period of time. You are referring to people being here illegally. What you are describing is a social and national security problem. This requires an entirely different discussion and solution. What you are talking about and a guest worker are vastly different subjects. No one should be confused between the idea of a guest worker as I have proposed and an illegal squatter.

      • I don’t see how we can “lock the border tight”. I still think the answer to the question is to go after employers and schools. That’s where you’ll find them. That’s why they come here. We don’t need to build a wall: build an enforcement squad that goes after employers and schools, and make the penalty for violating the law serious enough to deter employers and schools from allowing or encouraging them to work or go to school here. It’s really not fair to the illegals, either, but the problem will only worsen until or unless a line is drawn and enforced. Employers are partly to blame for the deaths of the illegals who smother or die of carbon monoxide in hot trucks–just like feeding wild bears. Sooner or later, it has to stop because it’s not fair to the bears. Employers won’t want to pay for health insurance, because if they did, they’d just hire Americans in the first place. The illegals go to hospitals and ERs and can’t pay, so we all cover the cost. I agree that entitlements shouldn’t be allowed. They don’t pay to build or maintain schools. I think with all of the US jobs going to Mexico, they could find good work there.

        • I have no problem making employers responsible for their employees and that is why I consider a guest worker program. I would build a wall. It has worked elsewhere and would be a barrier to drug trafficking as well. We have had hospitals run into severe financial problems from some illegal immigrant situations. Our abiliy to teach our school children should not be diluted, etc.

          Having said that, I believe we need immigrants, legal ones, and one’s that are good for America.

          • Having said that, I believe we need immigrants, legal ones, and one’s that are good for America.

            Whenever you state a ‘need’, you have an implicit purpose in mind. The utility of immigrants is that they can add some human capital. The disutility is that they carry integration costs with them. You need to make the cost calculus work for you.

                • I guess then that you will have to show us why it is a bad option using a balance sheet.

                  It’s actually a good temporary option and not that disimilar from companies that hire part time employees when the full time employees are not able to handle the job.

                  • Allan. You have two options.

                    1. A population of citizens and settler-aliens with very few others. (Diplomatic and quasi-diplomatic personnel, refugees admitted retail, students and teachers here for discrete terms, and the usual sojourners).

                    2. That and a guest worker population who are sent home when you’re done with them.

                    In case 1, the most ill-compensated labor (ceteris paribus) is done by the young, done by the old with retirement income, done by those primarily concerned with family responsibilities but who need income supplements, done by people slipping back into the workforce having been out for embarrassing reasons, and done by the regrettably unintelligent.

                    In case 2, you import a mess of guest workers to do it, who are then sent home. Keep in mind, the work in question is satisfactorily adapted to various population segments, provided the wage is right. The young in particular are introduced to the working world this way. More guest workers means more idle youth.

                    You have this idea in your head that there is some ‘need’ for labor which is determined a priori. There is not. The employer and the worker are brought together with the understanding that their affiliation is mutually beneficial.

                    • DSS, I think the question was better defined in an earlier answer of mine and that we have to move the discussion to what appears to be your main problem reserve wages. Since this was responded to elsewhere I won’t respond to it here.

                      “You have this idea in your head that there is some ‘need’ for labor which is determined a priori. There is not. “

                      Firstly, there is a need for skill even with regard to migrant agricultural labor. Secondly, that is not the way my mind is thinking. You seem to conclude in advance what will or will not happen. I don’t draw such conclusions, rather I rely upon the market place to determine the outcome. If under the appropriate and doable circumstances Americans would take over the job of the migrant guest worker then the market place would automatically exclude guest workers. If that were impossible then guest workers would fill the gap. If not that pecan farm would not be utilized in the best fashion possible. Additionally if American workers were working on that pecan farm and suddenly better jobs that increased the wealth of the nation opened up then the guest worker would permit this expansion of the economy by taking over the pecan jobs on a temporary basis.

        • I don’t see how we can “lock the border tight”. I

          Build a cement wall topped with razor wire punctuated with towers manned with armed guards. Implement a check-in-check-out system at all points-of-entry. Have an ample interior police force to chase down and detain those overstaying their visas. Under arrest, thence to one of a dedicated set of detention centers, thence to a Wapner hearing in front of a federal JP, thence to finish your spell in detention, thence to deportation. We take your biometrics and you aren’t issued a visa again for 12 years.

          • “Build a cement wall topped with razor wire punctuated with towers manned with armed guards.”

            I’d just wear a bear suit. They regularly climb that to get into one of the prisons here. (The government idea to make things better–prisons and tourism…. tells you what kind of brain trust is left in these parts). Maybe it’s just phone-addled guards too? Although, as an aside, a prison with a large hungry bear population might be a good crime deterrent. Would make a stronger, more sound platform than many.

        • We don’t need to build a wall: build an enforcement squad that goes after employers and schools,

          Your ‘mind’ doesn’t seem to be able to function other than to accuse people and recommend parties on your list of bogies be attacked.

        • I don’t see how we can “lock the border tight”.

          Well, you really can’t. Can’t lock anything tight. But, the effort to get around restrictions is based on the possible reward, and with all the talk of the free stuff here waiting for illegal immigrants, I’d be busting my arse to get in here too. As a matter of fact, I wonder if I can change my status to “Illegal” so I can cash in too. Quarterlies are coming up, and they make me cranky and not a good argumenter-er…

          Quit handing out free stuff, and that is what will take care of the problem. Nothing less.

    • DACA is A fraud and violating us constitution it’s not legislation is an crime bigots attorney general Jeff Sessions same crime when send to congress to repaired a dreams crime sedition to impose by impostor Obama II with abuse of executive order totalitarian by pay Us taxpayers and against national interest 50 sovereign states forms USA republic One Country One Nation We together build the nation, We all American are equal before the law, We in us constitution Trust.

      In effect, the congress bicameral at us capitol only make legislation for national interest 50 sovereign states who elected representatives & senators for make only laws legislation for national interest of the country for Americans dreams recovery not for crime and treason DACA crime. Them have not power to designated the president each 4 years in an criminal electoral college with monster violation XII Amendment written and ratified by 50 sovereign states to give legality and legitimacy and constitutional authority power for four years exercise terms. The congress have not authority to confirmed your own supreme judges illegal and unconstitutional linking criminal elite conservative and liberal of traitors (all American people are equal before the laws , its mandatory in USA republic) that nominate of president of fact of turn, then are Act and Fact violators of constitution written to protect us freedom and defend USA republic not interpretable for any official.

      In effect, the congress bicameral and president of facto are flagrantly to violated us contitituion and assassinate the power independence between branch legislative, Judi a land executive then than its have not the work of the democracy and institutional life of the democratic it’s fatal we are under a tyranny of representatives and senators elected para represented each sovereign states only make legislate the laws to the country.

      We The People American reject current tyranny of criminal cartel GOP and DNC consensus of traitors.

      ‪@POTUS rescind DACA sedition qualifying from unconstitutional is another treason same executive order impostor @BarackObama free of charge And exacerbating violence in street.‬

      ‪DACA pure sedition impose by BO now was been rescinded by unconstitutional so @AGOWA must to prosecute @POTUS44 FOR violated constitution and go to Guantanamo prison by treasons.‬

      The congress not repairs an dreamer criminal the congress only recovery American dreams violentated by criminal cartel @GOP @DNC linking elite conservative and liberal of traitors who designated president supplant inalienable right of votes will secret and appointed your own judges to breaking power independence to assessinate the work of democracy and institututionsly of life democratic for seeking of destroyed America union 50 sovereign states one country one nation We together build the nation, we all American citizens are equal before the law, We In US constitution trust. Forever. constitutions.com

    • Seriously? “Crazy Abe” Lincoln was a republican. Did you notice the secession availed of by Brexit, Catalonia, Scotland, West Virginia, Pakistan, Bangladesh and every nation in the former Soviet Union? Denying legal, constitutional secession was but one of Lincoln’s many multiple, insane and egregious violations of fundamental law in America. “Crazy Abe” Lincoln was so anti-American and unconstitutional that he deserved a very severe penalty. Oops.

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