[FoRK] U.S. Undocumented Immigrant Numbers Surge

Justin Mason jm at jmason.org
Mon Mar 21 20:46:04 PST 2005

Hash: SHA1

Stephen D. Williams writes:
> The US has had corruption in various governments and business at various 
> times.  Sooner or later, we cleaned house.  It IS possible with the 
> right attitude, mythology, and belief in the "right thing" by the 
> population.

Yes -- but what if corruption was in *all* of [government, business,
banking, the legal system, civil society]?   in other words if corruption
is endemic, it's a much harder thing to root out.

Even if there's a few "do-gooders" around who want to see an end to it,
they either 

  (a) may not care what happens to *your* section of society because they
  just want corruption cleared up as it pertains to *their* section, or 

  (b) are just not powerful enough to make a difference, because everyone
  else is too busy to care about such a minor thing (minor compared to
  making a living, that is).

- --j.

> For several years it has struck me how Russia seems like it 
> is living through a very US gangster-like era, albeit with the neo-KGB 
> to fall back on.
> Of course it's a big deal to remove corruption from a society.  Those 
> suffering from corruption should get together to confront it.
> Those of us who can educate, should educate about the wrongness of 
> corruption, that there are better ways, and about methods of ursurping 
> power from the unjust and bringing it to the people.
> sdw
> Luis Villa wrote:
> >On Mon, 21 Mar 2005 18:03:46 -0800, Justin Mason <jm at jmason.org> wrote:
> >  
> >
> >>Hash: SHA1
> >>
> >>
> >>Stephen D. Williams writes:
> >>    
> >>
> >>>The only real reason to restrict immigration is to avoid damaging
> >>>dilution of the immigree society.  Choosing the filter methods may be
> >>>fraught with various biases, but trying to absorb a billion people
> >>>suddenly isn't going to work either.
> >>>
> >>>You would think that when there are enough people who want to live in
> >>>the US that they would clean up their own locality to duplicate the US
> >>>rather than just trying to inherit from our past.  Mexico is the obvious
> >>>example.  Laws with teeth, systematic purging of corruption, sane
> >>>infrastructure.  Is it really that difficult?  There are billions
> >>>waiting to swoop in to build suburbia anywhere that a critical baseline
> >>>exists.
> >>>      
> >>>
> >>Who's supposed to do the 'laws with teeth, systematic purging of
> >>corruption, sane infrastructure' part?
> >>
> >>  - The (corrupt) government and its bureaucracy, who are all doing
> >>    quite nicely thank you, without these things interfering with
> >>    their kickback cashflow?  or:
> >>
> >>  - The citizens, in an armed revolution or something?
> >>
> >>It's quite a big deal removing corruption from a society. bear in mind
> >>it's often not just govt, but the entire social system -- I talked to
> >>people in Nepal who wouldn't deal with banks, for example, due to the
> >>corruption in *that* system.
> >>    
> >>
> >
> >+1. 
> >
> >Couple other notes:
> >* as in Russia, the top strata of society (in terms of wealth and
> >power) in many Latin American countries are either kleptocrats or the
> >descendants of kleptocrats. They have a vested interest in the status
> >quo.
> >
> >* we often complain that poor Americans (and even our middle class)
> >have it pretty bad in terms of income, power, whatever, and how the
> >Man Keeps Us Down. Anyone who says that has no fucking idea how good
> >they have it relative to most of the rest of the world.
> >
> >* It's been pointed out, wrt the embargo on Cuba, that if you are
> >working every waking moment to not starve, you have very little time
> >to ponder overthrowing the government, Justin's second point.
> >
> >Closing note: Latin American histofy prof at Cornell once told a
> >friend 'it is impossible to study Latin American history without
> >becoming a Marxist.' I'm not sure about impossible but I'll accept
> >'damn hard.'
> >
> >Luis
> >  
> >
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