In Ayn Rand’s novel Atlas Shrugged, first published in 1957 and one of the most widely read novels, the people who make the world work and run with their ideas and productivity go on strike. They disappear from the society that was exploiting their gifts and energies. With these achievers no longer contributing to society, disintegration sets in. The interventionists are left without the productive to tax and exploit for political gain.Like Atlas who holds the world on his shoulders, the people with ideas and the freedom to implement them without government interference support the world of commerce, innovation, and production. Their inaction is like Atlas shrugging and destabilizing the world.
Immigrant groups chose May 1, 2006, a celebrated international Marxist workers’ holiday, to show the capitalist West that without them American commerce would falter. Their one day of inaction won’t prove much except in a few isolated industries. When the Republican majority under Newt Gingrich’s House leadership shut down the government for a number of weeks, hardly anyone noticed. That would have been the time to cut government employment in half. The newly unemployed government workers could have been in the work force for ten years diminishing the need for illegal immigrants.
Black unemployment is said to be high. Why not give those receiving “government assistance” the option to take an illegal immigrant’s job or be dropped from the welfare roles. We learned that thousands of Katrina victims were living in government housing. Entire families could have been bused to areas where workers were needed, housed in trailers, and sent off to do immigrant work. If they refused, they too would lose their housing subsidies and any other assistance they were getting. The long-term affects would be staggering. The cycle of poverty would be broken, skills would be acquired, the development of a work ethic would be nurtured, the budget would be cut, employers would get their needed workers, and the incentive for illegals to come to the United States would be curtailed.
The rising tide of illegal immigration is a manifestation of the socialistic policies of our neighbors to the South. Immigrants of all kinds come to America because they know that the engine of commerce is strong. Those fleeing economic oppression are looking for a better life. Their goal is to become Americans in the full sense of the word: love of their new home, a desire to learn the language, and a commitment to the American way of life. My grandparents emigrated from Italy and worked hard at every aspect of Americanization. While they never learned English well, they made sure their children did. My mother’s parents sold their farm on “goat hill” and moved to the city so their 12 children could imbibe the whole American experience. My father’s parents changed their name from DeMario to DeMar. My father’s birth certificate reads “Antonio Josephe DeMario.” He went by Tony. We never thought of ourselves as hyphenated Americans. We lived on Elaine Drive in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with our Jewish, Polish, Slovik, Ukrainian, and Irish neighbors. There were undoubtedly other nationalities represented, but I never noticed.
Many of today’s immigrants, legal and illegal, and even many American-born, view America as a place to exploit. Their patron saint is Che Guevara (1928–1967). In 1956, along with Fidel Castro and others, he had crossed the Caribbean with the intention of invading Cuba and overthrowing the dictator Fulgencio Batista. The Batista regime fell, Che was executed in Bolivia, and a martyr was born. But for what? The worldview of Che and Fidel has given us Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela! There is no mass immigration to these “utopian” socialist nations. Like East Berlin, there is a high price to pay for those who want to escape.
The immigrants who protested yesterday may not realize it, but their long-term protest efforts might kill the goose that lays golden eggs. Che can’t shrug because his worldview does not hold up the world. It can only exploit and destroy. The sooner we all understand this, the sooner we as a nation will solve our illegal immigration problems.