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The revenge of the Green Card

Perhaps this is my own personal jaundice and nothing else but I seem to have found myself in an ‘issue-trough’. I think this is what journalists call a ‘slow news day’. I can seem to find anything worthy of truly sinking my teeth into and grinding away. I do detect the onset of a series of ‘Great World-Shaking Events’ in the offing but they’re teetering back-and-forth on the precipice so tantalisingly that they’re starting to lull me into a hypnotic trance.

Well, something will come along pretty soon, I’ll bet. But, in the meantime, I shall use this hiatus in the global narrative to indulge in a bit of mischief-making.

It’s becoming quite clear that the EU is adopting an increasingly anti-American character. As illustrated in this post from Perry a while back, the EU elites are actively marketing their project as being the plausible rival to the American ‘hyperpower’, the antidote to US-style ‘cowboy’ diplomacy and vigourous (which they see as ‘virulent’) market ideology.

The grumbling and foot-dragging from various European governments over US plans for Saddam Hussein are a symptom of this background antipathy not the cause of it. It’s already causing a rift in relations and that rift is only going to get worse. Having given up trying to forge an identity for their superstate, the EU elite are having to rely increasingly on an anti-identity and that anti-identity is Anti-American.

So, what could the US government do about this? Work round it? Fight against it? Try to mollify it? Options which are all expensive, difficult and far from guaranteed to succeed.

No, I can think of a better solution: open up the US to immigration from Europe.

It’s a policy that would have nothing but nothing but benefits for the US:

  1. It would attract vast numbers of bright, young, well-educated Europeans grown weary of the burden of their increasingly fossilised economies. They would sprout wings and fly in the more entrepreneurial environment of the USA.

  2. European immigrants would be able to assimilate seamlessly in a heartbeat and, more importantly, they would want to.

  3. It’s a no-cost policy. Not a penny of US taxpayers money would have to be spent.

  4. It’s a politically winning policy. The American left could hardly object unless they want to stand on an anti-immigration platform; the isolationist right won’t mind because, let’s face it, the overwhelming majority of Europeans are white, and libertarians cannot possibly have any cause for complaint. Thus all potential political opposition within the US is neutralised.

  5. America gets progressively richer and more dynamic while Europe’s enarques are left lording it over a constituency consisting of pensioners, cretins and Al-Qaeda sleepers.

So, if the EUnuchs get too far up George Bush’s nose, may I suggest that a heady revenge can be obtained by a mere stroke of the Presidential pen by which he could consign the aforesaid EUnuchs to a slow, lingering, humiliating death. It really is a win-win-win-win policy. In fact, from an American point of view, I cannot think of a downside.

Oh yes, sorry, I can think of a downside; some Americans living in the vicinity of any Ports of Entry risk being trampled to death in the rush.

36 comments to The revenge of the Green Card

  • Yes! Bwahahaha, let the blood-letting begin!…

    Okay, there is a downside, what if this means draining Europe of all the ones who could actually fix it? You know, the motivated ones? Then again, I think the changes that Mexico is going through, especially in the rural areas, is in no small-part due to the Mexicans who come to the U.S., to stay or not, and send there money back. They’re finally getting around to demanding a little bit better government like they see up north, or as in many small towns, they’re taking charge and building roads and infrastructure themselves. So, maybe we do need a little more ‘cultural exchange.’ Maybe seeing things on the the ground here (U.S.) will cause European immegres/expats to protest even louder about the mess that is the EU.

    One final note: When the European continent hollows itself demographically, I predict Americans going on a buying spree, especially the countryside and smaller villages [Buy your own empty village!] (maybe even permanently moving there). Except for France and Spain, the Brits just about have that all bought up.

  • A Nonny Mouse

    While i agree with item (1), i also agree that many not-so-“bright, young, [and] well-educated” people would come as well. Though i would love to have open borders, i think lack of socialism in the US is a prerequisite.

  • ellie

    David;

    Are you hoping for a green card? I see problems with your idea, not the least of which is the fact that current US immigration policy remains weighted toward LDC (or whatever we’re supposed to call them now) migrants. We are still repenting for past sins of exclusion and discrimination. I seriously doubt that the Left would support any reduction in third world immigration ‘quotas’ (or whatever we’re supposed to call that now), so we’d need to increase overall immigration caps to accomodate Europeans who don’t ‘need’ to come here. Even if we did that, I assure you that there would still be cries of ‘racism.’ We are also facing serious questions now concerning the ca 10,000,000 illegal Mexican migrants residing in the US – I wonder what Vincente Fox would say if we increased European immigartion while failing to address normalization and work permitting for Mexican laborers? . I think the American public is a little antsy right now as far as immigration is concerned, perhaps due to the fact that immigrants recently murdered 3,000 people here. That, plus the presence of so many ‘illegals’ and porous borders, makes the issue politically sensitive. Economically, European migrants are winners, and I’d love to see more here, but, the timing is not good, to say the least.

  • Julian Morrison

    “Okay, there is a downside, what if this means draining Europe of all the ones who could actually fix it?”

    it’s Atlas Shrugged all over again.

  • David Carr

    ellie,

    Points duly taken but as regards the murder of 3000 people on Sept 11th 2001, I hardly think that that’s the kind of thing that geeky German software engineers are going to get up to.

  • Brian Micklethwait

    I don’t agree that this policy, if it could be done (and on that I have no idea), would necessarily harm Europe. The brain drain and brawn drain and everything drain that would occur might bash sense into the ruling heads of Europe the way no mere dissident would-be-entrepreneurs ever could, without something like a brain drain to point at. Okay that might not work either, but as for “men of good sense” prevailing over here, that also seems extremely unlikely. Let’s hope that CNE thing proves me wrong.

    Also, and this has happened before I believe, immigrants from Europe to America might eventually go back to their European country of origin and then sort it out. I believe de Valera was such a person, as was Golda Meir. And I’m sure there have been/will be others.

    Plus, what about Australasia?

  • ellie

    David;

    I agree, German computer geeks are cool. (Of course, on the other hand, several of our hijackers arrived in the US via Germany, where they were residents of some sort.) It’s not European immigration that would be the problem, but rather the idea of even more immigration, and the obvious failures we’ve had in managing it. I don’t think our visa services & immigration management officials command a lot of respect just now.

  • I’m not so sure how massive the movement from Europe would be. I’ve known perhaps 10 first world European students in the U.S. (France, Germany, Britain and Spain), and every single one of them wanted to return to their native land. I’ve known several foreign students from third world countries (Mexico, India, Columbia, Bangladesh, Algeria and Romania), and every single one of them wanted to stay in the U.S.

    I don’t know if this was very representative, obviously, but it certainly gives me some doubts about this idea. It seems to me that the cost of assimilating to American culture, being away from friends and family, and speaking a non-native language are fairly high. They’re comparatively higher for people from the high-tax first world than the poor-economy third.

  • What frightens me is the growing Islamicist population in Europe, often forming political parties and having occasional calls for Islamic law. We let the America-lovers leave Europe, who’s left? pensioners, whatever, but also Finsbury Park Mosque, the huge minority in the Netherlands, the aforementioned German al-Qaeda cell, etc. Having silly socialists in charge of Europe is certainly better than having those in charge!

  • Lucas: The stats show that students taking advanced degrees in the US from China, India and the UK are more likely to stay and obtain jobs, living there permanently.

    David: Instead of a green card or using points, certain countries should just lift immigration barriers between themselves (perhaps limited to certain occupations or industries) to facilitate more flexible labour markets.

    Philip Chaston

  • A_t

    Philip, err… is that not what the EU, for all it’s (many) faults, is supposed to be about?

  • One Of Them

    More Europeans we don’t need.

    The influx of dusky third-worlders which has been going on for 50 years or so is both a precious salve to the conscience of our collective-guilt Leftists and a source of irritation to those of us who see no need to import whole ghetto communities into a country that is already blessed with many indigenous ghettos. But, a fascinating thing happens to third-world (inlcuding Muslim) immigrants after a generation or two in the US. While some small, deranged minority seems to drift into the lunatic mind set of the radical Islamists, most simply become secular citizens who go about the business of earning and living. Their food smells bad, their aesthetic sense is appalling but they are, like other cultural subgroups within the nation, mostly law abiding. Their commerical vigor is absolutely astounding, as though it was held behind a dam and is released here in a flood. Having no problem at all with the concept of “sink or swim” and perceiving that no overbearing government is bent on keeping them from swimming they strive, relentlessly, for commercial success. The first generation sacrifices, the second generation becomes educated and by the third generation their are millionaires in the family. Astonishing.

    A raft of “sophisticated” Europeans, on the other hand, would drag along their socialist indoctrination and sniffy smugness. Already accustomed to the relative economic freedom of Euroland they would find the US not espescially different from whence they came except in the small details (the omnipresent fast food, the relentless commercialism, the bumptious semi-literate politicians, the difficulty of locating a crusty baguette or a sufficiently runny brie) and so would have no appreciation for the opportunities abounding. After a time, if they fail to quickly become millionaires, they will notice the absence of a cradle-to-grave saftey net and wonder why they traded the stultifying saftey of their homelands (and the good bread) for the crude and unpredictable frontier of America. When their enterprises are run to the ground by quick, relentless, predatory competitors their uncertainty will turn to bitterness and they will become vocal critics of the culture, perhaps returning to Europe to write scathing articles about the vapid proles that they suffered to live amonst in their deluded years.

    Stay home. You’re not fit for the struggle here.

  • Logan Spector

    Would not your policy give strings-free entry to the U.S. to Islamist citizens of the E.U.?

  • A_t: No flexible labour markets in Europe, though getting better. Anyway, who wants to emigrate to Europe.

  • Trent Telenko

    It will not happen because America would wind up with second generation French-Algerian muslims, or other Euro-land equivalents, who are agents of Al-Qaeda or some other radical Islamist faction.

  • John Hale

    Adrianne touched on this, but what if the “Europeans” who chose to emigrate to the U.S. were the very Islamofascists we’d very much like to keep out?

  • “One Of Them,” that was both funny and insightful, though I do believe that the ones who’d attempt the transatlantic relocation would be doing it because they know of the benefits in doing so. There’d be an inevitable percentage of curious/suspicious Euros who’d move here and become catty/spiteful in short order, but no one cares much about them, do they? *grin*

    Interesting idea, David. Especially for a slow news day.

  • NC3

    This is a trick by the Euroweenies and the US Dept. of State to allow the free flow of all the trouble making leftist, Muslims and off-white colonialists into the USA. Take out your own trash…we got problems enough with the Mexicans and Kanadians. Why do you hate us so???? sob, sob

  • I like the idea. but the problem with this is that it would be labeled a “racest” policy to allow educated europiens come in this country without letting an equal number of poor from “non-white” countries in.

    I don’t think a points based system would fly in the states, but it is exactly what is needed.

  • Dave from GR

    A few years ago there was a lottery for something like 13,000 Canadians to get green cards, apparently to redress previous miscalculations. Anyway, as I recall, about half the population applied. Pretty amusing.

  • Dave from GR

    A few years ago there was a lottery for something like 13,000 Canadians to get green cards, apparently to redress previous miscalculations. Anyway, as I recall, about half the population applied. Pretty amusing.

  • ruprecht

    This has idea has merit, but it only addresses half the problem. Europe has severe greying and demographic problems. A nice influx of leftist Americans of European decent could help to solve that problem.

  • anonymous coward

    US would be better off extending NAFTA to include the British Isles, Eastern Europe, and Turkey. Providing an alternative that doesn’t require cashing in thousands of years of culture and national identity.

    Let the Eu Bureucrats compete with that.

  • Chuckles

    Actually I know exactly how to let Europeans in and the Islamofascists out.

    In the 1970’s, the Jackson-Vanik law gave refugee status to Russian Jews who wanted to escape the anti-semitic Soviet Union

    Congress could pass a law giving refugee status to Christians and Jews who want to flee the anti-Christian and anti-Jewish European Union. Citoyens named Mohammed need not apply. :o)

  • ruprecht

    I think the fears of rafts full of French sophisticats and Islamofascist Algerian French are overblown. The last thing socialist sophisticats want is to live in America, they’d be the last to go. And it might sound terrible, but the Islamiofascists seem to go where the juicy welfare benefits are. I think they’ll work on creating the Islamic Republic of Europe before moving on to North America.

  • Rob

    The brain drain problem is real. It’s comparitively easier for Canadians to migrate to the U.S., and the result of this combined with socialism is obvious: GDP per capita less than 60% of the U.S., and an increasingly bitter and and trite public discourse.

    Of course, the U.S. could always annex Canada–the western provinces and Maritimes, anyway. (Isn’t it odd that the coasts, which are the least tolerable portions of the U.S., are the most tolerable portions of Canada?)

  • mojo

    “Isn’t it odd that the coasts, which are the least tolerable portions of the U.S., are the most tolerable portions of Canada?”

    Not really. It’s the “big heat-sink” effect of the ocean.

    Ever been to one of the Dakotas in mid-winter? Brrrrr….

  • Rob: Maybe we can arrange a trade. We give the Canadians our coasts, and they give us theirs. :)

    And there has been talk of extending NAFTA or creating a transatlantic equivalent (usually referred to as TAFTA, the Trans-Atlantic Free Trade Assoc.). Personally I’m all for it. Drop the tarriffs and the subsidies and blow those Euries out of the economic water once and for all. Let Africa use cheap agro to bootstrap themselves out of the third world, while we get the economic effects of cheap food and manufacturing labor — and export all the great GM ideas back to our agro suppliers.

    The Euries will never go for TAFTA, unfortunately, and as long as they keep holding out the carrot/stick of EU inclusion, neither will Eastern Europe, Turkey, et al.

  • Tony

    I’ve just looked at the INS site under the Green Card program. Here’s a snippet.

    The following are Countries that are excluded from participating in the Green Card Lottery: Canada, China(mainland-born), Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Pakistan, Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and Vietnam. Persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR and Taiwan are eligible.

    Now there’s some pretty unsavoury countries there (you choose as per your preference! :), but one country sticks out like a sore thumb, probably because it’s mine.

    The UK.

    Why is that? Seriously, I’m not being funny, but why is it that countries like Saudi Arabia, Iraq, France and Germany (all erstwhile allies of the US – not) are permissible, but the UK isn’t? You’re not worried that we’ll get you drinking warm beer and teach you cricket are you? (actually, you’re better off learning cricket from the Ozzies).

    Before any Americans get antsy, I recognize the US can allow or disallow anyone it bloody well likes from entering its country (at least in theory), but this has certainly got me confused.

    I just want to get away from the relentless PC rhetoric we have here, the implication that a white male is the root of all evil, the insistent, monotonous erosion of civil liberties that have existed for centuries, the incessant addition of laws from Brussels over everything from banana curvature to ‘harmonized tax policies’, the insidious destruction of our native culture in the name of ‘multi-culturalism’, the ever-rising tax burden, the invasion of government into even more aspects of my life, the inability to defend myself from an assailant and all the other abberations that make me think that I’m living in some police state.

    For the first time in my life, I’m seriously thinking of leaving the land of my birth. Destination: America, Australia, NZ. Medical IT professional, PhD, own teeth….

  • Matt

    Tony,

    I also note that Canada is on the list, though I have to say that I’ve noticed no shortage of Canucks wandering around – usually within a couple block radius of a medical building of some sort (seeing as they can’t see a doctor in Canada without a writ from the Queen).

    I may be speaking directly out of my arse here, but while some of the countries on that list may tend to breed some ‘unsavory’ types (and hence are not worth the risk), the worry with the UK and Canada may be nothing more than good old American-style protectionism. What are the odds that an immigrant from, say, Ethiopia is going to come in and put an American Medical IT Professional with a PhD out of work?

    My concern with any sort of mass immigration of Euros (or any other folks for that matter) is that mainstream Europe is considerably further left than the average American. Al Gore would probably have been considered a rival for Iain Duncan Smith in Europe (at least until he (Gore) started grumbling about socializing health care recently). I would be concerned that a disproportionate number of emigrating Euros would tilt the political balance further left if they became citizens and voted, and I am certainly not for that.

    If there were some way to discriminate based on political ideology – “Give me your tired, your oppressed, your free market capitalists (but you can keep the pinkos all the same)…”

  • Raoul Ortega

    Re: Green card lottery.

    I’m only guessing, but I would suppose, looking at the list, that those are countries which are the source of most current legal immigration. Probably mostly people “reuniting” their families and such.

    As for the original suggestion– a lot of it’s already happening. I worked at a large, well-known software company inthe Northwest where I shared an office with someone from Denmark. Having finally received that precious “green card”, this person had no desire to return, because there you were expected to get a nice gov’t job and put in your time until you qualified for your pension.

  • giad

    I think that there would be an influx of tax refugees from Europe, rather than freeloaders, since welfare reform is ongoing in US. If we are going to “save” Social Security as we know it, we need more wage earners. In most of Western Europe, the tough unions, mind boggling regulations and heavily inbred bureaucratic blanket smothers innovation and productivity. Plus unemployment is high, welfare is the only choice for the several generations of unassimilated immigrants and retirment comes at an early age in Europe. All of this is supported by a shrinking base of taxpayers. Those Europeans who wish to be more productive, keep more of what they earn, have no limits on their success, escape state-sponsored euthenasia and become simplistic Americans are welcome.

  • This really slays me — a few years ago, Germany started an “IT green card” program to attract programmers and such. The minimum salary set for these positions by the government was so high, no one could afford to hire for them! My then-company wanted to move me to Bonn, but I wouldn’t have qualified for the green card because the position didn’t pay enough. Catch-22? perhaps…

    Let’s get back to the ‘geeky German software engineers,’ shall we? I’m putting my cards on the table now. Any GGSE’s in need of a green card may marry me, the proprietrix of bitter-girl.com, after a brief courtship for INS purposes. If you’ve parents willing to send large care packages of German chocolate regularly, your application will be moved far up in the queue. ;)

  • “The American left could hardly object unless they want to stand on an anti-immigration platform”

    Hold on for a sec, I’m still laughing… OK, I’m back. The American left stands on a basically anti-white platform. Any increase on European immigration over immigration of non-Euros would be seen as a devious, evil plot by the Republican devils to oppress “minorities.” Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, in fact, the whole Persons of Color Inc. would see that nothing like this got past the discussion stage.

  • Brown Bro.

    How pathetic – bunch of racists pretending to be libertarians. Compared to the average hardworking Indian programmers or Korean grocers, you guys are no better than supposed “whiny liberals”.

    Hey, I happen to have many friends on both sides – European _and_ Asian geeks. What do they have in common? They work hard and care less about politics. Where do they differ? The latter, from less developed countries in general, like the living condition and want to stay. The former, they come to work for a few years after college, save as much as they can, AND GO BACK. None of them are that thrilled about the ballyhooed “American Way of Life”. They know what they’re missing.

    Which is apparently more than some of you here. Do yourselves a favor – go spend some time in Europe, THEN ask yourselves again. It’s no one else’s business where you prefer, but at least it won’t appear so laughable.

    (To throw in another monkey wrench: apparently the Japanese aren’t too keen about moving here either, even in their present woes. Life in Japan is on par to Europe but you can hardly call it a haven for disgruntled socialists. Could it be … gasp … life really is better on the other side?)

    Oh – about that favorite libertarian pin-up girl: When was the last time Ayn Rand ever had to take responsibility for other people? Like, the elderly and children?

  • Jenny Vu

    My cousine just came to USA for almost 3 months and he has a tempary green card# only not the actual green card, can he goes back to Vietnam now for his family emergency? And how long can he stay there? What procedures and policies that he has to do in order for him to go back there, Vietnam? I really appreciate for your assistance.

    Jenny