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All-Star Member

^Lucy Pinder
18722 Posts
4/08
Posted - Dec 22 2016 : 11:17PM
^ My problem with "illegal alien" is that a person cannot be illegal. A person can do something that is illegal, like enter or remain in or work in a country illegally.
So if you want to stick with your wording, it would be more appropriate to call them "aliens here illegally" or "aliens working illegally". As those sound mighty clumsy, the drift has been towards using the term "undocumented workers", which in fact is what they really are. They're working, but they don't have the legal documents to allow them to do so.
[edit: hardware got in there before me. My post was a response to Bob. But Hardware's was probably better reasoned than mine.]
Edited by - killbillvol69 on 12/22/2016 11:19:00 PM
 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
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Posted - Dec 22 2016 : 11:37PM
The problem with the term "undocumented workers" is that those folks are, in fact, breaking the law by being here (or, at least, by working here). It's not merely that their work permits or visas have been "misplaced", which is sort of what the euphemism seems to suggest.
Better to keep pointing out the hypocrisy straight on than to play games with words. Not sure how to win hearts, but that isn't going to do it.
 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
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Posted - Dec 22 2016 : 11:46PM
Slice and dice however much you want, but these particular aliens (a legal term of historic derivation; see, e.g., the Alien and Sedition Acts) of which I speak are working here illegally. The clumsiness of the language is not what's responsible for the "drift". Let's please all be honest and acknowledge that the reason for the "drift" is ideological.
Language is a tool and language is a weapon. Unless we all -- left, right and center alike -- start using the same language, we are fucked.

Senior Member

tGrump has no shortage of assholes.
6974 Posts
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Posted - Dec 22 2016 : 11:50PM
Well, I'm the one who purposely wrote "undocumented workers" so here's why.
It's a clumsy term, and it's inaccurate, since not everyone under the umbrella is employed, but I wrote it as a reaction to the phrase "illegal aliens," which is designed to provoke negative reactions.
I have been an "alien" legally in dozens of countries, and nobody at all, ever, has made it a point to refer to me as an "alien." It's rude. I just spent almost five years in Canada without anyone being rude or negative about it. The word "alien" is never aimed at Zsa Zsa Gabor or Melania Trump or Arnold Schwarzenegger or Carlos Slim or Ivana Trump or Henry Kissinger. In casual conversation it has been reserved for use as a pejorative.
"Illegal alien" makes too much of a status offense. If you are 16 years old and your parents brought you here as an infant, it's hard for me to see you as someone who has committed a legal offense. So I think the phrase "illegal alien" is as inaccurate as "undocumented worker," but is pointlessly nasty.
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Senior Member

Real news. Fake president.
13914 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 12:08AM
+1 Drives me nuts. It's not a missing paperwork issue. It's a you're not supposed to be here and you're breaking the law issue.
 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 2:52AM

Ergo, it's a "status offense" for the hypothetical 16-year old kid, because there was no choice involved. For the parents, it's not a status offense.

Senior Member

2937 Posts
2/15
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 2:56AM
^^ I'm actually amazed that all the discussion about the term is about the first word and not the second. What about using the term: illegal immigrants.
And (as has been said) it's quite amusing when first world governments criticize illegal immigrant workers, when they know their economic structure couldn't function without them.
 
All-Star Member

4629 Posts
8/11
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 2:57AM
I was simply listing a couple of actual things Trump will do come Jan. 20th. I wasn't trying to start a debate. Since you brought it up though, illegals do create cost on both the local and state level. They must be provided with a free education in the local public school system where they reside. Also, illegals qualify for in state tuition rates at some public colleges & universities across the country. What's the per pupil cost in your local community? It's quite impressive in these parts (>$15,000 per year).
Edited by - aclayfan on 12/23/2016 3:04:58 AM
 
All-Star Member

I came to turn on everyone
1721 Posts
6/10
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 3:26AM
^ thanks for replying.
Do they, the 'persons from outside the US employed without documentation in contravention of the law', pay taxes? Why do the people who employ them choose to do so, instead of employing US citizens? Are these employers breaking the law by employing illegal aliens/undocumented workers? If so, do these employers ever get prosecuted?
BTW I live in NZ - (1) our borders are not particularly porous; (2) in the past we have been happy to fill our workforce with Pacific Islanders (from Tonga and Samoa) when it's suited us (housing/construction booms, for instance) and then tried to kick them out when politicians want to look tough on immigration; and, not completely relevant, (3) our official attitude to refugees is appalling.
And, still wondering how voting for Trump is going to benefit 'the deplorables'? How many illegal aliens in your community, aclayfan, are benefiting from the free tuition you speak of? Would they be the children of the illegal aliens working for the employers who aren't getting prosecuted?
Edited by - Sexy Sadie on 12/23/2016 3:33:08 AM
Edited by - Sexy Sadie on 12/23/2016 3:39:55 AM
 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 3:32AM
Works fine for me.
As I've noted, that's an entirely different question. The nomenclature and the policy are not indissolubly linked. Immigration is a complex issue, and the complexity is what needs to be addressed. Precision with words is part and parcel of clear thinking and honest discourse, and we need both of them desperately.
An aside:
As someone who lives in Los Angeles, I know only too well how the local economy depends on people who live under the radar. It's also the case, however, that although many illegal immigrants pay income taxes (because their employers don't know or don't care that they've faked their work permits, but withhold taxes anyway) and of course they pay sales taxes like everyone else, on the whole the illegal immigrant population in this country still does not pay it's fair share of the cost of the infrastructure they enjoy. At the same time, it's also clear to me that we need to take care of children, however they've gotten here, and give them the best start in life -- and the best shot at becoming full-fledged, above-ground, productive members of our society.
So I'm a centrist on this issue, I guess.
But now I've strayed too far afield. This thread is about bashing Donald Trump, and I'm all for that. Please continue.
 
All-Star Member

I came to turn on everyone
1721 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 3:37AM
^ so who is paying more than their fair share for the decaying infrastructure you're all enjoying? And who's to blame for the imbalance?
[on-going editing of posts to correct predictive typos]
Edited by - Sexy Sadie on 12/23/2016 3:42:18 AM
 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 3:45AM
Yes, but not as much as others.
Because they are cheaper.
Yes. Employers are required by law to obtain I-9 Forms and supporting documentation from all employees. It's a criminal offense not to do so. Most employers are pretty assiduous in doing so. It's in decentralized industries like construction and food service, and service jobs like domestic work, where margins and slim and compliance is, well, spotty. But I'm sure you already know that.
Rarely, I'm sure. But the offenders are not the large-scale employers. In this regard, they function as much under the radar as the workers they illegally employ. There are way too many people to keep track of, particularly if you don't want to live in a "Big Brother" society (which I don't).

Edited by - bob on 12/23/2016 3:49:38 AM

 
All-Star Member

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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 3:47AM
The middle class and the "legal" working class, of course.
 
All-Star Member

I came to turn on everyone
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 3:48AM
If the opiate-wasted Rust Belters ever decided to leave the welfare comfort of Missouri to look for better liives as houseboys, nannies and casual workers for millionaire developers in Florida then illegal aliens would have no chance of gaining employment because Americans.
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All-Star Member

I came to turn on everyone
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 3:51AM
You're saying these people are not only paying more than their fair share AND they're also the ones who are to blame for it as well.
 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 3:53AM
Anyone who doesn't pay their fair share, including illegal immigrants and billionaires.
 
All-Star Member

I came to turn on everyone
1721 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 3:57AM
So why is establishing a process whereby such workers are de-criminalised, without necessarily giving permanent Green Cards or conferring citizenship, such an anathema?
And still wondering how voting for Trump is going to benefit the deplorables?
 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 3:58AM
No.
And honestly, assessing blame is too complicated and really beside the point. If I had policy suggestions, I'd be in political office or a think tank.
 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 3:59AM
I'm in favor of such a process on a reasoned basis.
Search me. I voted for Hillary.
 
All-Star Member

I came to turn on everyone
1721 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 4:00AM
Which one of these groups has more power to change things?
 
All-Star Member

I came to turn on everyone
1721 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 4:02AM
And, Bob, thanks for the reasonableness...
 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 4:20AM
I don't really understand the way change works. In the media, in the voting booth, in the streets, in some strange agglomeration. The Silent Majority voted for Obama the two last times around, Bush before that, and Trump this time. Who can fathom the ways of the voting populace in this country? Certainly not me.
 
All-Star Member

I came to turn on everyone
1721 Posts
6/10
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 5:12AM
And yet the illegal alien who takes the risk of being caught at the border, the risk of not finding work, the risk of being deported, faces the certainty of being denigrated, faces the certainty of low wages performing work, which would be available to any deplorable who turned off Fox, got over their sense of entitlement, hopped in their pick-up and used some of the 'go to where the work is gumption that made America great in the first place' - the illegal alien who is actually trying to make something of their and their family's lives is the bad person?
Yeah, it might be 'illegal' but it's not their fault the deplorables don't want to work.
Edited by - Sexy Sadie on 12/23/2016 5:17:26 AM
 
All-Star Member

I came to turn on everyone
1721 Posts
6/10
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 6:07AM
On reflection, I am being to dismissive. You have a valid point, to wit, that Trump may not know what he is going to do. Nevertheless most indications so far suggest that pretty much all the substantive stuff that will emerge from the Trump administration will be decisions made by 1%ers for the benefit of 1%ers. Would you agree?
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All-Star Member

pornography wasn't sex but fantasies of an impossibly hospitable world
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 6:21AM
The issue wouldn't be tracking individuals but incorprated businesses who have to report payroll for contractors as much as for those on salary. I doubt it would be too difficult if there was any actual political interest or will to do so but for clear and rather craven reasons there isn't. A lot easier for politicians to rant about the brown people 'stealing jobs' rather than the middle and upper class employers exploiting said workforce.
the unknown pervert
Deactivated User

I'd like to stay but I've got a plane to catch.
17482 Posts
5/06
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 9:26AM
????? (response to bolded part) Are you Batman? Captain America? This country has been through the Civil War, Reconstruction, WWI, The Great Depression, The Dust Bowl, WWII, The Cold War, Vietnam, Watergate, 9/11, and four assassinated presidents without needing anyone to save it. Trump is a door ding.
 
Golden Age Classic

13495 Posts
5/01
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 9:37AM
MOD:
Keep it civil, no sniping at each other.
the unknown pervert
Deactivated User

I'd like to stay but I've got a plane to catch.
17482 Posts
5/06
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 9:54AM
The problem with making Trump predictions based on Trump indications is that Trump indications change day to day, hour to hour, minute to minute.
I guess the unknown question/factor is scope. It is not a bad thing that decisions are going to benefit 1%ers. The reason they are considered 1%s is that they own or run most of the businesses that employ the most people. If decisions do not benefit them they are not likely to expand their businesses and therefore expand the job market. More likely they will lay people off and cut jobs as part of "corporate restructuring." For Trump to succeed his policies have to benefit the 1%ers. They also have to benefit everyone else but you can't make a policy that helps workers at Ford Motor Company unless that policy also helps Ford Motor Company. If you do the long term result will be fewer and poorer workers at Ford Motor Company. If the benefits of his decisions are spread out 50/50 between the one percent and the middle class he will be a success. If they go 90/10 to the one percent he will be a failure. Frankly the more any politician or arm of the government tries to manipulate an economy the more likely the economy is to become fucked up but that cat has been out of the bag way too long to ever go back into the bag.

Senior Member

tGrump has no shortage of assholes.
6974 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 11:53AM
I knew that. Hence my statement that "illegal alien" is as inaccurate as "undocumented worker"--one because for some it's a status offense, and the other because not all of them are workers.
I would be happy to use "undocumented immigrants."
It occurs to me that I once arrived in France without proper documentation and the officials told me I had to leave immediately (self-deport at my own expense on the next plane). Still, they were polite and nobody spat at me. The French. Were polite. To an American! I prefer to think of myself as an undocumented person rather than an illegal person.
If people want to use "alien" as if it had no negative connotation, then explain why the word "alien" is not applied to people like Melania Trump. Ever.
After a while we stop using legitimate words that have acquired a negative connotation. Negro.
 
All-Star Member

"You have sacrificed nothing and no one."
6309 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 12:55PM
** Intentionally Deleted **
Thank you, Janitor
Edited by - Goldstein on 12/26/2016 2:33:25 PM
 
All-Star Member

Meh
6023 Posts
10/13
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 1:02PM
^ TUP wasn't being directly insulting, it was more of a concern trolling type of post in my opinion.
 
All-Star Member

I came to turn on everyone
1721 Posts
6/10
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 2:05PM
Which is just a long way of saying 'trickle down'. I struggle with how sanguine you are about the fact that the 1% own or run most of the businesses. Oligarchy, aristocracy or what? Or is that what you mean by the economy being fucked up?
Currently it seems the 1% are like those miracle sponges that are demonstrated at fairs and which can absorb many times it mass/volume in water, except the stuff running all over the counter is opportunity.
So is the trickle down now going to happen? What is the reason it's not happening already? Does the Donald know where the tap is and is he going to turn it on ever so slightly? Why can't it be more than a trickle?
 
All-Star Member

pornography wasn't sex but fantasies of an impossibly hospitable world
17059 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 2:39PM
It has been over 30 years since Reagan so that trickle should be arriving any moment...

Senior Member

2937 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 9:27PM
Ahhh ... after thirty years I finally get it: the key word was never down, the key word was TRICKLE.
 
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Woman of the Decade
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 9:36PM
You're too late. The 1%-ers soaked it all up!

Senior Member

tGrump has no shortage of assholes.
6974 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 10:22PM
They were wearing Depends.

Senior Member

You Damn Right!!!
2925 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 11:14PM
Hell yeah! Guess who's back.................
Aqui Estoy!
EL mas Chingon! EL Mero Mero!
These next 4 years are going to be a hell of a fight.......
but I'm here.....aqui estoy!!!!
Still standing proud....and I ain't going no-wheres ESE!!!!!
"Ya gotta bring ass to get ass......."!!!!
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Senior Member

Real news. Fake president.
13914 Posts
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Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 11:19PM
Oh, that's bullshit. May have been true 100 years ago, but not now. The suggestion that life as we know it would grind to a halt and plunge us into chaos if the illegal workforce were to be removed is just another rhetorical device employed by the illegal alien apologists. There are sufficient numbers of citizens and legal residents to harvest the crops, mow the lawns, bus the tables, put up the sheetrock in the shitty housing developments, and do all the rest of the work that needs doing. Some wage and price adjustments would ensue, but it would benefit the 99% and hurt the 1%.

Senior Member

2759 Posts
11/09
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 11:21PM
I have been saying this for a long time. Can't have any kind of immigration without some type of employment, unless they are wealthy.
It's something the right refuses to admit to like most of the nonsense being peddled by the right.

Senior Member

2937 Posts
2/15
Posted - Dec 23 2016 : 11:45PM
^^ You know what, I actually agree with that. But I still think the current economic structure's of many first world countries have a significant dependence on cheap immigrant labor. (Or is that just another way of saying it allows some people to get rich?).
In my (island) country, there are thousands of people who come here on student/tourist visas, and provide cheap labour illegally. Everyone knows this, and everyone is happy to leave it as is.
There has recently been a major national scandal about multinational franchisors underpaying staff. The franchisees have been saying they actually can't pay legal wages and run the business profitably. This is because the whole franchise model is based on cheap (immigrant) labor - that in the US is taken as standard.
Edited by - Simple Simon on 12/23/2016 11:47:06 PM
 
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Woman of the Decade
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Posted - Dec 24 2016 : 12:09AM
Aye, there's the rub.

Senior Member

Carryin', contrarian, libertarian
10183 Posts
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Posted - Dec 24 2016 : 4:35AM
Nowheres until ICE shows up on your doorstep, that is.
 
All-Star Member

Big cats scare me but...
4732 Posts
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Posted - Dec 24 2016 : 3:22PM
Dude.

Senior Member

You Damn Right!!!
2925 Posts
5/10
Posted - Dec 24 2016 : 5:48PM
^^Whatever.........
Feliz Navidad!
Edited by - el jefe on 12/24/2016 5:49:11 PM
 
All-Star Member

Your other left
28335 Posts
3/02
Posted - Dec 24 2016 : 6:40PM
I disagree with that interpretation, but if that's how you see it then I'm not going to deny your right to that point of view.
Again, I'm not suggesting that these people aren't breaking the law. I'm saying that the term 'undocumented worker' was probably born out of a desire to recognize that American citizens, up to and including our President-elect, are tacitly approving of these people breaking the law, by giving them work. I do not imagine that they do so because they want to help these workers get a leg up. On the contrary, they want to exploit the illegal status of these people and pay them less than the minimum wage.
So, do we blame the people with the power, or do we blame the people without the power? Let me suggest that simply blaming the people without the power will not change the mind-set of those with the power. They will not address your concern. At most, they will simply find another way to cheat the system, because that's what the Donald Trumps of this world do.
 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
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Posted - Dec 24 2016 : 10:42PM
I began my digression on an issue of language.
Forget the nouns "worker", "alien", and "immigrant"; those are beside the point of my original post.
It comes down to the modifiers: "illegal" and "undocumented".
For me, that dichotomy encapsulates a basic question: Are "national borders" and "citizenship" legitimate political constructs?
When I use the word "illegal", I'm affirming those constructs. When I use the phrase "path to citizenship", I'm also affirming those constructs. I dislike the word "undocumented" because, in my view, it disaffirms those constructs . . . without actually saying so.
Other people may feel that those constructs are illegitimate. That's a fair position to take.



 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
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Posted - Dec 24 2016 : 10:45PM
And I would prefer it if they just said so.
 
All-Star Member

13081 Posts
3/03
Posted - Dec 24 2016 : 10:49PM
Because that's where the real discussion starts.
[End of Rant]

Senior Member

tGrump has no shortage of assholes.
6974 Posts
11/13
Posted - Dec 24 2016 : 11:52PM
That's an interesting question, and probably a different thread.
What is the meaning of citizenship if you can buy it? Does citizenship mean anything if people who were born here, whose parents were born here, are told to go back where they came from? Is there anything about a person that distinguishes a citizen from a non-citizen?
 
All-Star Member

Woman of the Decade
13912 Posts
1/08
Posted - Dec 25 2016 : 12:48AM
^ Which leads us to another question: what is the meaning of "citizenship"
And also reminder: there is an "immigration" thread.
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