I’ll Have An Ounce of Prevention, Please

Posted on May 7, 2013


WWBFD? Glad you asked. I’ll share his letter with you.

Woven into the fabric of our unique American culture is the timeless wisdom of founding father, Benjamin Franklin.  Franklin, the author of the phrase, “An Ounce of Prevention is worth a Pound of Cure”, would be appalled at much that is going on in American politics, but probably not shocked.

Ambassador and Postmaster Franklin counted among his legendary ‘Thirteen Virtues’, Frugality, Justice and Moderation.  He certainly would take exception with a move in Washington D.C., currently underway, in which an ill-concieved policy objective threatens to flood our country with economic refugees from such a corrupt and violent region as Mexico and Central America.

I believe Mr. Franklin would recommend we energetically oppose Comprehensive Immigration Reform.  If I may be allowed to take some literary license and channel Ambassador Franklin for a moment, this is a letter I received from him ‘beyond the Sunset mountains’:

“It has come to my attention that there are maneuvers afoot in our nation’s capitol, whose perpetrators (Charlatans, we used to call them and worse),  aim to regularize the status of an enormous number of migrants who are violating our laws of residency.  I believe such a move to be foolhardy, as it serves the interest of a very few and is not in the best interests of the majority of our citizens.

The prime beneficiaries of what I and my fellow Patriots regard as a reward to wrongdoing and an encouragement of more, are the political class and the employers of unskilled and low skilled labor.  So often, I’ve observed, that such schemes inherently have winners and losers.  I’ve alluded to the winners, but let me touch on who the losers are, and what they stand to lose.

If we allow this so-called ‘path to citizenship’ to be rushed through our national legislature, there are many disastrous consequences which will inevitably follow.  First of all, we now know that when one of your recent, well loved Presidents allowed himself to be persuaded to sign an ‘amnesty’ bill in 1986, that the natural and not unpredictable effect of this was to invite millions more to violate our sovereign borders in hopes of similar rewards.  There will be no difference in the outcome this time, except that the numbers of migrants will be multiplied exponentially.

Secondly, I have reviewed this sham of a piece of legislation and have spotted some quite poisonous provisions.  The bill authored by this small ‘Gang’ of traitors, allows for extensive chain migration.  Permit me to simplify the practical meaning of that.  A new poll conducted by PewGlobal.org, indicates that 35% of Mexican residents, would like to immigrate to the United States, and 20% of those, would contemplate doing so even if it meant entering unbidden.  That’s 35 million more, added to the 15-20 million here already!

What, you might ask, would be the net impact on just the economy alone, of the passage of a law that would induce not only more chain-migration, but waves of additional illegal migration?   The answer has been given us by a couple of distinguished researchers in this field and sponsored by the pre-eminent voice defending limited government principals, the Heritage Foundation.  By the way, nice logo HF!

The scholars I refer to are Mr. Robert Rector, a Research Fellow and Dr. Jason Richwine, Senior Policy Analyst.  In their Executive Summary, of which finer details can be seen here, the esteemed Mr. Rector and Dr. Richwine, outline the following key points:

  • Illegal households use, on the average – $24,721.00 in government benefits, while paying in only an estimated $10,334.00 in taxes, leaving a net deficit, unfunded mandate and a liability to the taxpayer of $14,387.00.
  • After 13 years, ostensibly, according to the proposed legislation I examined – amnesty recipients would “begin to receive government benefits at the same rate as lawful immigrant households of the same education level.”
  • Because of the regularized status of these former illegals, they would become recipients of existing social entitlements such as ‘Obamacare’, Social Security, Welfare, Medicare and Food Stamps.
  • The cost of legalizing these unlawful trespassers  would rise to $43,900 per household; tax payments would remain around $16,000; the average fiscal deficit (benefits minus taxes) would be about $28,000 per household.
  • Amnesty would also raise retirement costs by making unlawful immigrants eligible for Social Security and Medicare, resulting in a net fiscal deficit of around $22,700 per retired amnesty recipient per year.
  • If amnesty is enacted, the average adult unlawful immigrant would receive $592,000 more in government benefits over the course of his remaining lifetime than he would pay in taxes.

When an old mathematics aficionado such as myself, sees dollar cost estimates such as this, I am staggered.  I wasn’t quite ready for the ultimate shock, however.  You see, in my day, we were aware of the concept of ‘billions’ as an abstract.  It wasn’t until nearly a century after my passing, that Congress, the 51st, amassed and subsequently spent the sum of one Billion dollars.

The first time I saw the actual figure of a Trillion dollars, I confess that I felt dizzy, nauseous, and nearly fainted.  By the way, you might wonder from where I (in my present state of affairs), gain access to this information on what’s going on down there on Planet Terra.  It’s simple, we have access to a much more sophisticated version of what you 21st century inhabitants like to call ‘the Cloud’. I live on it – we strum Harps on it.

Anyway, I take U.S. Government expenditures pretty seriously because my likeness is on the $100 bill and on the $1,000 Savings bond.  When I discovered, through my observation and the confirmation of the two scholars (among numerous others) at the Heritage Foundation, that legalizing unlawful immigrants would, in a short span of time cost Americans $6.3 Trillion dollars, I knew I had to speak out on this.

There are some who, in studying my personal history, would make note of the fact that in my youth, I myself was an ‘economic refugee’ of sorts; migrating in 1727 at the age of 17, from my birthplace in Boston to Philadelphia to seek work.  Such a move was highly disreputable at the time and generally disapproved of by authorities.  The rest is a matter of history as I demur to boast of my accomplishments.

The essential difference between my economic migration in the early 18th Century and your situation today is that we had no such institution as government provided welfare.  ‘Welfare’ in the parlance of the Constitution, simply meant the government doing its utmost best to promote opportunity.  America is a completely different beast in 2013!  Importing large numbers of ‘net tax consumers’ is unaffordable, unsustainable and a calamity in the making.

By no means is the fiscal impact of illegal migration the only aspect of it that I am opposed to.  There are too many others to enumerate in this letter in detail, but suffice to say that among them are imported crime, diseases, wage erosion, damage to the environment, non-assimilation to our culture and identity theft.  What’s more, the ‘enforcement provisions’ in this scandalous piece of rubbish they are trying to spring on the public at large – as they did Obamacare, are an illusion and nothing more.

I strongly advise you to insist that these roguish scoundrels that call themselves a ‘gang’, abandon such folly or that you will tar and feather them and run them out on a rail.  I see that you have abandoned that practice – although unwisely in my opinion.  Nevertheless, as one of your 20th Century icons cleverly mused, ‘ When you can’t make them see the Light, make them feel the Heat.”

On a side note, I believe that quite too much is made of the supposed virtue of civility and diplomacy in political discourse.  We were certainly no ‘shrinking violets’ in my day – far from it.  Read the correspondence of the founders and translate them into today’s vernacular.

Civility has it’s place in the company of polite society, ladies and children.  It is most unbecoming when evil and avaricious men are plotting to steal your and your great-Grand children’s inheritance of freedom, liberty and livelihood.  And in the spirit of that verity, I heartily encourage you to continue to confront tyranny with sharp tongue and sharp wit at Blasted Fools.”