If you've been reading the Toronto Star you will have noticed some articles about the plight of Portugese immigrants in Toronto. While the evidence is mostly anecdotal, there is a conviction among members of this community that the rate of deportation has spiked since the Conservatives took over office.

This includes immigrants who originally entered the country illegally or over-stayed various kinds of visas, but who now have jobs and homes and cars and (may or may not) pay income taxes. [Ed. -- The more I read about this, the less clear I am on whether or not these people are paying income taxes] Many people are being deported with only two weeks notice. While there are arguments for deporting people who have entered illegally because it is unfair to people on waiting lists hoping to immigrate legally, even if those arguments are valid it's inhumane to make families pack up their life and leave within two weeks.

What makes this case interesting is the fact that a high-percentage of these immigrants work in the construction industry in various skilled trades. There are shortages of people with these skills in Canada as it is and a number of high-profile developers have made a plea to Mr. Harper to consider the type of amnesty for gainfully employed immigrants that the liberals were considering before they left office. Deporting these people will hurt the economy and yet, the conservatives are going ahead with it anyway. This may seem strange to you, as we typically think of conservatives as being economically and fiscally responsible. However, Stephen Harper is a neo-con (like Harris and Bush) and for neo-cons social issues trump fiscal and economic responsibilities. Harris and Bush both ran up extraordinary deficits and if Canada weren't drowning in oil money right now, Stephen Harper would probably do the same damn thing. The deportation of important workers in a booming economic sector is the first sign of 'moral values' (xenophobia) trumping the economic well-being of Canadians. What's more!, neo-cons are afraid of many things besides foreigners, including gays, women, drugs, atheists and intellectuals -- so they will have lots of opportunities to put our economy at risk to advance their agenda.

Some of you might wonder why this is. What has happened to the conservatives we used to know and love? Never fear dear readers, I shall explain; people are motivated to enter into politics because they have strong feeling about ISSUES. Leftists want to see the fair treatment of the poor and other marginalized members of society. It used to be the case that various taxes, tarrifs, regulations and government policies made it difficult to do business. This was an issue and so people were motivated to run for office to fix it. These were the old-school conservatives.

Now however, the global economic system as a whole runs quite smoothly. Anyone interested in business goes into BUSINESS -- not into government. For this reason the conservative parties are left to pick and choose amongst candidates motivated by social issues. All the intelligent, reasonable right-wing people are picked up by corporations and conservative political parties are basically left with the kids nobody wants on their baseball team. While they may claim to be economically conservative, they are primarily motivated by social issues and when they are forced to choose they will always choose pushing their social agenda over the economic well-being of the country's economy.

Very little would benefit our economy more (especially the tourism industry) than legalizing and taxing marijuana -- and yet what is the likelihood that this will happen with a conservative government? Nothing could be worse for the US debt-crisis than the war in Iraq and yet that's exactly what W. wanted and by lying through his teeth, that's what he got. It is in effect a $300 billion dollar version of rolling up in a saloon and saying "I'm looking for the man who shot my pa."

The strange thing is that liberals have come around to the idea that a strong economy with targeted redistribution of wealth, particularly in the areas of health and education, is actually the best way to help the lower and middle classes. The issues that motivated them to enter into politics demand that they maintain a strong economy and for this reason, they are actually MORE likely than neo-cons to balance the budget and address economic issues. So, in conclusion, if you want an economically responsible government, you should vote Liberal. If that isn't a sign of the apocalypse, I don't know what is. We are indeed living in a brave new world.

To be fair, the Conservatives are suggesting that the deportation rate hasn't changed since they took office, but they can't explain why they won't consider the sort of amnesty that the Liberals were planning to put forward.


Blogger Unknown said...

You know the horsemen are on the hill when the Dutch start kick people out who have teenage children who were born in Holland.

Have you ever read Ian Gilmour's 'Dancing with Dogma'? It is a left wing concervative trashing Tatcher's highly prized economic record, funny.

Judas Penrose
Poetry Politics and Piracy

3:01 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some say the U.S. neo-cons are deliberately running up massive debt so that if they are defeated it will be impossible for the Democrats to restore the programs that they have cut (everything but the military and church-based social programs).

There are some real conservatives that are turning against Bush over fiscal policies, even joining the Democrats.

It is truly a sign of the end days that the United States rules the world and does it by borrowing the money to do it from the rest of us.

3:20 p.m.  

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