On a related note, everyone should check out the most recent BloggingHeads, which features a very interesting dialogue between James Pinkerton and Mickey Kaus. Very good bigthink about the future (and a lovely new term, technological determinism) and immigration.
One quibble is that he reiterates the theory held by most people, which is that we could reduce illegal immigration to a trickle without much effort by building a wall. It’s similar to the thought that we could win the drug war if only we tried harder.
The government can’t keep drugs out of prisons, and the Soviets had the biggest police state in history, and they had tremendous drug problems. It’s ridiculous to think while we can’t successfully ban inanimate objects, we can successfully ban animate ones.
I imagine we’ll do what we’re doing with the drug war, which is spend a lot of money and civil liberties to create self-perpetuating interest groups (much like the classic bootleggers and Baptists unions of the prohibition era) and to deal with the actual problems as poorly as possible.
For the record I think sanctions on employers is the most effective way of dealing with the total number of illegal immigrants (not that it will do that much) and the main thing we should be doing (if we insist on some collective action) is to rapidly Americanize the immigrants that are here. Put simply, we need to change the Mexicans living here into Americans of Hispanic descent and throw this whole notion of multiculturalism away (the illegal immigrants did).