Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Speaking of . . . our neighbors to the south, I think I've spouted off on immigration here before, so I won't do the whole song and dance (i.e., let labor cross borders just like capital). I'll just say this about Vicente Fox: he embodies the notion of "meet the new boss, same as the old boss" wonderfully. Remember when his election caused a wave of optimism, that finally the corrupt old PRI was swept out of office, and a new generation would take over Mexico, build an economy, and stop using the porous US border as an economic crutch? Well, it's business as usual again.
Kicking off a three-day, three-state tour, Mexican President Vicente Fox on Tuesday stressed the need for greater cooperation between his country and the U.S. on such things as trade, energy and security. Left unmentioned was the hot topic of illegal immigration.
That's right, Sr. Fox managed to skip the topic that's giving America convulsions now. Mostly because we're about to hand him a sweet, sweet deal to make millions of his citizens our citizens. He's caught on to all the old tricks of his predecessors, selling US-Mexican "cooperation" that saves him the trouble of doing all that reforming he talked about.

Like I said, I'm all for well-regulated immigration, even lots of it. I'd like to see the Mexican border run like the Canadian border (only with fewer Canadians), with a relatively free flow of people and investment. But we can never truly have that kind of relationship as long as Mexico pushes off the troublesome sacrifices (like giving up blatant, wholesale graft at all levels of government) that building a real economy would require.

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