Monday, September 03, 2007


"The radio says they were just deportees"

I have some of my best (at least I think they are) ideas while lying in bed: prone meditation. My eyes are closed, I'm comfortable, and there aren't many distractions.

The last few weeks, the lyrics of a Woody Guthrie song have been bouncing around my mind. The song is "Deportees." It's about a plane crash that killed many Mexican migrant workers while they were being deported back to their patria. Someone sent me a swell version of the song, with Trish Hinojosa, Steve Earle, Odetta, and others. It's a heart-breaker. We've exploited Mexican workers ever since...well, ever since our war of conquest against Mexico, 1845. America wanted the west coast and a reasonable route to it. We took a good chunk of Mexico to accomplish that.

Conquest. Aggression. Yeah, it was a war of aggression, pure and simple. And essentially a "pre-emptive" strike. America waited along the Texas-Mexico border for an incursion—any incursion, even a raid of cattle rustlers—to justify attacking the Mexican Republic. Whether or not we actually had an incursion is debatable—sort of like the Gulf of Tonkin, the invasion of Panama, Grenada, the WMDs, and so on. The Mexican army was weak, but people will fight for their country, no matter how untrained or poorly armed. They tried. At the conclusion, at the battle of Chapultepec, cadets of the Mexican military school wrapped themselves in national flags and jumped from the cliffs rather than surrender.

The United States, as we know, ended up with Arizona, California, New Mexico, and assorted parts of other present-day states. We had secured the west coast, a route to the orient, routes for railroads...and cheap labor.

Mexico isn't a basket-case, but it has a huge population of poor people and a small population of very rich people. It has oil, gold, silver, and drugs. It's a country we've plundered quite well over the last 150 or so years. We're plundering it of labor, now. The Mexicans are cooperating, in a way. Their country is a time-bomb: sooner or later it's going to explode like it did in the early 20th Century. Every poor person that makes it to the U.S. is one less component of that bomb. And that's fine with the wealthy Mexicans, the ruling class, and it's fine with many Americans. Migrant agriculture, domestic work, cheap labor...hey, what's wrong with all that?

Well, count the ways. I don't want to: it makes me depressed—more depressed than normal. The ruling class in America and the ruling class in Mexico are pretty much the same folks, when you get down to it. They aren't what most people think of as "Mexican." They're Euro-Mexican: light-skinned, college educated (often in the U.S.), English-speaking and to see them on the street you think they're just wealthy folks. Which they are, of course.

The right-wing in the United States, which has had a racist p.o.v. for as long as I can remember (which is the better part of seventy years). They've ranted about Jews, African-Americans, Italian-Americans, American Indians, and Mexicans—without using those multi-syllabic words, of course. Niggers, Kikes, Wops, Spics—just a few of the common names. Remember the Nixon tapes? This is the big secret of the conservative movement: they're closet white supremicists. The dark-skinned and non Anglo-Americans who make it in are house-slaves. Just like Harry Belafonte said about Colin Powell and Condi Rice. It's sad, and it's true. Remember the old joke: "they don't call it the White House for nothing"?

So the right is opposed to illegal immigrants. The neo-cons and neander-cons don't want to encourage Mexico to straighten up. They're pals, and a lot of money that flows south to north.

Anyhow, go find a copy of Guthrie's song: it's on the WWW in half a dozen places at least. Listen to it, and tell me what you think about the current raving about illegal immigrants.

After reading this I now know it for sure...Your full of crap.

I may be full of crap, but you're full of shit.

Neener neener.
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