Disclaimer

Anne Martens

Dear Blue Oregon Readers,

Earlier this week, I posted a commentary on this site regarding what I consider to be the racist overtones of various efforts to limit the rights of many immigrants. That post has apparently angered a number of people, which is fine. Everyone is entitled to their opinions, as I am entitled to mine.

It has come to my attention, however, that a number of people have attempted to connect my piece – which represents my personal views and mine alone – with my employer, the Oregon Secretary of State’s office.

Let me be absolutely clear. The opinions that I regularly share (or vent, as the case may be) on this site are mine and mine alone. I did not ask anyone at my place of employment, nor anyone else, what they thought of the issue before I posted, and I have not asked them since. In addition to my job duties, I am also a citizen. I am solely responsible for my views, and I stand by them.

Let me add that since I have never stated or otherwise implied that my posts here were in any way representative of anything but my opinions, I think that it is opportunistic and dishonest to attempt to impute something under my personal by-line to my employer in an effort to stir up a political maelstrom. I hope this clears everything up. Happy reading.

Thanks,
Anne

[Editor's note: You can see some of the right-wing rantings here, here, and here.]

Comments

  • Anne Rocks (unverified)
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    i read anne's last post and i read a lot of the repsonses and i thought that anne was talking in general terms and general truths and most of the people writing against where beating up on her for not being pedantic enough. and just so you all know kevin mannix, ron saxton, and jason atkinson are going to abuse and use this issue and these people not because of their care for the law or this state its citzens or the imegrants illegal or otherwise but because they see it as a devisvie issue that could get them elected, that is it no more no less. The fact that people tied to conect her blog to her employer is totally ridiculose and offensive. in no way did her article imply a connection and none should have been assumed. as a person who works in the political world and often comments on blue oregon this behavior is upsetting and unfair.

  • (Show?)

    You've got that right Anne. Keep on contributing, your opinions are valuable. The blogosphere medium invites a certain amount of irresponsible linking of motives that don't exist, a certain amount of "gotcha", a certain amount of embellishment of the facts, or lack of facts, and statement making with no examples or truthiness for back up. Statements like "Kulongoski's lack luster performance" with no itemized list of what the commenter means by the statement or "Bush sucks.", again with no examples, get blown off by most readers as sloppy political spam of the lowest level. Give us reasoned opinions, explain why, give examples of what is meant by a particular statement. In my opinion, lazy cowards write slurs. P.S. That is my opinion and mine alone. Kudos to you Anne.

  • Levon (unverified)
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    Employment of the RED HERRING fallacy is often a sign of weakness on the part of the arguer.

    That opponents of Ms. Marten's piece respond with irrelevant issues and accusations isn't entirely surprising yet regretable.

    Ms. Marten's pieces are consistently the most engaging and well-written posts on the site and I hope that she continues.

    Disagree with her conclusions, but let's not resort to desperate claims and intimidation in response.

  • Ginny (unverified)
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    "I think that it is opportunistic and dishonest to attempt to impute something under my personal by-line to my employer in an effort to stir up a political maelstrom."

    So they're "dishonest racists"?

    I read all of the prior stuff and was wonder Anne.

    Does it matter that the people you named are NOT racists?

    Or is it simply more important for you to call them racists in order to taint their efforts.

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    It's unfortunate that a post like this is even necessary.

    Can you imagine if somone who works for a private employer posted something on a blog and people attributed those views to the employer? Contrary to increasingly popular belief, public employees don't forfeit their constitutional rights (much less their personal opinions) when they go to work for the government.

    If we truly value the free exchange of views that the internet allows, maybe we all need to chill out.

  • anonymous (unverified)
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    ...public employees don't forfeit their constitutional rights (much less their personal opinions) when they go to work for the government...

    Right on Jack!

    So, what about when someone goes to work for a candidate? Do they lose their constitutional rights then? Someone should ask FuturePAC...

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    The AP article on all of this complete with link back to Anne's archive page here.

  • askquestions1st (unverified)
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    It's interesting that right-wing, and actually too many middle-of-the-road and left-of-center, anti-immigrant demagogues have taken up the propoganda tactic of puting the focus on "illegal" . Not too mention how impotent and weak the progressive/liberal community has been in challenging this tactic. And Ginny, although only the vast majority of them are racists, they are all demagogues stirring up fear and hate against immigrants.

    I'm certain the following point cannot be an original contribution to the current national debate. But it is still useful to make it again: At different times in this country, was it not "illegal" to educate a slave or help one escape bondage? Was it not "illegal" to attempt to vote or attempt to buy birth control if you were a woman? Was it not "illegal" to be a Japanese-American and resist being sent to an internment camp? And was it not "illegal" to sit in the front of the bus, drink from a 'whites only' water fountain, or marry a white person if you were black?

    And does anyone of normal intelligence and character actually want to argue that those laws were decent and moral?

    The fact is, that there is no inherently moral ground in justifying fear and hate on claims of "illegality". Too often, codifying something as "illegal" is just demagoguery of the worst type: Legitimizing fear and hate for political advantage. In this case, it is to give a new wedge-issue to the political bottom-crawlers running for state and national office, and to build support for discriminatory legislation passed which would create a constant, permanent underclass of cheap labor that the demagogue-in-chief is now cynically positioning as the humane compromise.

  • Kurt (unverified)
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    Keep on drinking the Kool-Aid. If you think by calling yourself "progressives" that tones down the extreme views most liberals have go ahead. This blog by The communications director of the Secretary of Obstruction shows the true colors. Once again the liberal mantra of name calling (i.e. racist) when you can't define and support the outrageous position comes to the forefront.

    I'm not a liberal or a conservative. I'm the middle of the road, independent who actually makes a difference in the swings from one extreme to the other.

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    I think your name calling just proves the fact that your the one drinking the Kool-Aid. It's one thing if your a conservative, but to come on a board and act like a "middle of the road, independent" and then call people names sounds suspicious to me.

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    Yeah, Anne, What Jack said. If the system's working even halfway right, the best and brightest merit notice by competent government officials and are chosen on that basis to serve the people. I certainly think that you fit the bill, and I definitely don't want to see the old Right Wing tactic of stifling debate to prevail here.

    It's legal and necessary for our debate to be informed by folks who are out there on the front line, even and especially if they are employed at the upper reaches of state gummint.

    Keep up the good work.

    <hr/>

    So, AskquestionsfirstThenChangetheSubject let me start this out with a return ad hominem attack. But first another definition:

    ad hom·ii·nem Pronunciation (hmnmm, nmm) adj. Appealing to personal considerations rather than to logic or reason: Debaters should avoid ad hominemm arguments that question their opponents' motives.

    While you are pretty clear that you have the motivation of all of your opponents figured out, I'd have to exercise a bit more intellectual rigor and confess that I can't decide if you're just a jerk, or are actually an idiot.

    ....although only the vast majority of them are racists, they are all demagogues stirring up fear and hate against immigrants.

    And once you have labeled all of those who disagree with you as not worthy of debate, you can ignore any specific points brought up (which of course, you've been ignoring anyway).

  • Steve (unverified)
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    I think Ms Martens is an intelligent person and an attorney. However, the thing most troubling is that she never addressed the issue of illegal aliens, preferring instead to call people who do address the issue racists. The other troubling thing is equating all illegal aliens with being Mexican, which is not true.

    As for Mr askquestions1st, since when is enforcing the law against people here illegally a hate crime? I am totally confused by the statement "propoganda tactic of putting the focus on "illegal"", then what is the law supposed to focus on? Laws should be moral, but using laws to set morality is not right either.

  • Sid Leader (unverified)
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    The GOP is running scared, by scaring you!

    Illegals are taking your job, your wife, your country! Boo!

    How did you like my Ron Saxton imitation?

    Poor Ron should have got a mindlift instead of that facelift.

  • Pancho (unverified)
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    mexican mantra.

    All of the laws should be enforced equally, regardless of race, religion, and/or national origin. That is with the exception of mexicans, and they should be above the law and exempt from the law. And the only purpose that a tonto gringo serves is to pay taxes to support the superior and noble mexican.

    Anyone who disagrees with this philosophy is a Xenophobic Racist.

    Pancho

    All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others. George Orwell, Animal Farm, ch.10, 1945

  • GOanneGO! (unverified)
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    YEAH ANNIE!

    I am so glad that someone finally called these people out in print! I just read the Statesman Journal article...and there is some crazy saying that there is a big difference between issue of legality and being a racist.

    I grew up in the South ... it was once illegal for African American CITIZENS to marry someone who was white, vote, own property, know how to read, etc, etc.

    So go ahead you bigoted crazies and shroud yourself in the law, the church, whatever helps you sleep at night - but I've heard your arguments a million times before. I come a region full of racists - and I know one when I see one.

    Thanks Anne for calling it like it is...its about time someone did.

    Disclaimer..I also occasionally work for elected officials. The views expressed here are my own views ...but I will work my fingers to the bone, making sure we elect more peope who share them.

    Keep trucking Anne - you rock.

    “For, as laws do not make right, but are simply declaratory of a right which already existed, it is not to be presumed that they can so stultify themselves, as to command injustice." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

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    The other troubling thing is equating all illegal aliens with being Mexican, which is not true.

    Actually, I'm pretty sure that Anne was addressing the fact that Jim Ludwick is leading a handful of folks out to harrass Mexican consular officials who are touring the state explaining rights to Mexican immigrants. The fact that a majority of those immigrants are here legally does not appear to be an issue for Jim, who is on record as saying that immigration itself is a threat to American sovereignty.

    Of course, he's also said that we should send school children into the fields to pick our crops in Oregon, but I suppose that's another issue entirely.

  • askquestions1st (unverified)
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    Whoever posted as Pat Ryan - What precisely are you raving about here? I'd like to believe you misread or misunderstood the single post I made on this issue. When I re-read it I can see how someone might, on a careless read, misinterpret just the first paragraph. But you are so exercised it is hard to believe that is the whole story. Just in case, the phrase vast majority of them are racists should be understood as the phrase vast majority of anti-immigrant reactionaries are racists.

    Steve - In the typical fashion of the dumb, reactionary right, not only did you apparently not read the post, you then went on to claim it says something it doesn't. (Although come to think of it, you and "as Pat Ryan" seem to not be too far apart in that.) So let me give you the Cliff Notes version: There is nothing moral or decent in the law itself. In fact, the law in this case is pretty much about trying to legitimize fear and hate. So arguments about enforcing the law are just so much anti-immigrant demagoguery. Whether you personally are doing it just because you're not bright enough or too consumed by your own fears to know better, or for political advantage like the demagogue-in-chief and his political allies, is something only you yourself know.

    Pancho - You're not clever or funny. Just pathetic.

    Anne and several posters in response did a great job of voicing the truth. Like a few other posters, I too grew up in the South during the era of desegregation and I have first hand experience to know that you have to get in the face of bigots even though, sadly, they act out of a pathetic mixture of fear, ignorance, and disempowerment. (You also have to get in the face of progressives/liberals/libertarians who would rather play their own silly games rather than get in the face of bigots, which is why I demonstrated in my post I have little patience for people apparently like whoever posted as Pat Ryan.)

    Getting in the face of bigots means not only calling them what they are in front of the world, so that in the end only a minority of the electorate will continue to associate with them, it also means taking away their ability to argue by taking apart their propoganda. As good as Anne's post was, that is where her comments fell a bit short and was the starting point for my comments, as well as those by GOAnneGO, apparently.

  • Steve (unverified)
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    "There is nothing moral or decent in the law itself."

    Then for god sakes, why don't all of us just choose which laws we think are moral or not and decide to follow those and ignore the others. Your logic (or lack of) is beyond the pale. If the law is so oppressive, then change it.

    My point is if the state does not want to enforce its own law, then what? Try to get past your predjudices that anyone who doesn't agree with you is a bigot or racist (especially when you don't know them) and show some elegance in your attacks. If we call each other names, I don't see how we are going to making any advances.

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    It might surprise some folks that "whoever posted as Pat Ryan," is, in fact, Pat Ryan. I don't know why someone assumed he wasn't. Shouldn't that person ask questions first?

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    Actually Ask, you are living proof that your assertion that it also means taking away their ability to argue by taking apart their propoganda. is flat wrong. Your bigotry and refusal to debate the actual questions of your opponents, show that facts and reasonable debating points are most often ignored by bigots.

    big·ot Pronunciation (bgt) n. One who is strongly partial to one's own group, religion, race, or politics and is intolerant of those who differ.

    <hr/>

    Reminds me of the LTE in The Oregonian Friday in which a couple that have been solid supporters of Measure 37 are furious at the Clackamas County Commissioners for allowing a new gravel pit to go in adjoining their property in Mollala.

    Everybody gets to play.

  • Karl (unverified)
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    "Racist " is a word that denys a person's humanity. It has a lot in common with words like nigger, honky or beaner. It's a shortcut. It allows you to put people into the box of "them", those awful others. Then you don't have to try to understand them or communicate with them.

    Come on people. Sometimes becoming what you hate sneaks up on you from behind.

  • askquestions1st (unverified)
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    To Wayne - Maybe because I wanted to give the real "Pat Ryan" the benefit of the doubt as to whether he posted the rather loopy diatribe there. That's a form of asking a question --- not assuming, and letting the real "Pat Ryan" come forward to claim or disclaim the statement. Do you "get it" when it is put in those elementary terms?

    To Steve - Since you seem to believe you value and understand logical reasoning, let me take you through an exercise in logical reason. Humor me, if you will, since I am humoring you with the courtesy of acknowledging the content of you comment in addition to the form.

    In our system, enforcement of laws by the Executive is to a large extent discretionary. And we all know the whackjobs on the right have applauded the priorities for enforcement the "dry" drunk leading this administration has chosen, frankly in some cases with a legal basis, in his brain-addled state which put things like civil rights, environmental quality, and due process guarantees at the bottom of the list. So it isn't an issue of "enforce the laws or change them", it's an issue of the value choices made in prioritizing what laws to enforce. That first logical proposition clear enough for you?

    As a consequence, one doesn't have to know someone personally to assert that when their personal values lead them to demagogue that enforcement of anti-immigration laws rooted in fear and hate should have the amongst the highest political and law-enforcement priorities, that they are bigots and/or racists. That is a matter of definitions and deduction about their own expressed values. To be sure, generosity demands that we acknowledge such value choices are due to fear, ignorance, and feeling disempowered, but that has nothing to do with calling things for what they are in plain and simple language. That second logical proposition simple enough for you?

    Finally, it happens right now that one of the talking-points du jour of the right is the case of Abdul Rahman in Afghanistan, the 41-year old man under a death sentence because of his conversion to Christianity. What is not part of the talking points is that his plight is the legitimate result of the legal process for enforcing the laws under the new Afghan constitution, which in Ch. 1, Art. 3, explicitly makes Islamic law the basis of Afghani law with the statement that "no law can be contrary to the beliefs and provisions of the sacred religion of Islam". And although some like to point out that Ch. 1., Art. 7, states that the state "shall abide by the ... Universal Declaration of Human Rights", which in turns states in Art. 18 that "everyone has the right to freedom of ... religion", the UDHR is a declaration of principle, not law.

    So at best this sets up an issue of discretion in deciding priorities for enforcing duly enacted Afghan law --- wouldn't you agree? The question to you in the Rahman case: Is the law just and should it be enforced? My answer is No and No? However, disregarding it or changing before it is enforced is not legitimate by your own words or reasoning. I note also that anti-immigrant activists in this country are demanding current law be fully and mercilessly enforced against any individual in violation until and unless it is changed.

    When you answer, please have the intellectually honesty to acknowledge that the Afghan Constitution was previously hailed by the demagogue-in-chief and his brain-washed right-wing followers as evidence of our success in using war to bring democracy to Afghanistan. And take note of the fact the same has been argued about elections and ratification in Iraq which brought ultra-fundamentalist Islamic group to power rather than secular Iraqis.

    You might also comment in fairness on what we all know the right-wing in this country, many of whom are the bigots and racists arguing for merciless enforcement and enactment of new anti-immigrant laws, think of international law, particularly when it comes to statements about human rights. I seem to vaguely remember something about disregarding numerous binding anti-torture agreements (including Art. 5 of the UDHR), the Geneva Convention, and prohibitions against launching armed agression under the UN Charter.

    That last logical proposition, in the Socratic form of asking a question, clear enough to you?

  • PanchoPdx (unverified)
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    "Pancho - You're not clever or funny. Just pathetic."

    Oh crap, someone's encroaching on my anonymous pseudonym!

    For the record, "PanchoPdx" (me) is not posting as "Pancho". Please don't confuse us (unless he says something brilliant).

  • askquestions1st (unverified)
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    Karl - "Bigot" and "racist" are words that have a precise meaning. It is quite legitimate in political debate, which is first and foremost, about values and the consequences of legislating on those values, to use them. When applied carefully, consciously and correctly, it is the opposite of what you describe as putting some into the box of "them" so you don't have to try to understand them or communicate with them. They are powerful accusations, and should be used when appropriate, precisely because they are so powerful in the face of values and actions that are so dangerous.

    It's unclear whether you have any appreciation for the understanding those of us who grew up in the South have of what the demagoguery going on around this issue really means. Or just how naive you look making those statements. Sorry to be such a tough dose of reality, but that is how we learn and grow.

    What strikes me about this debate is that folks seem to not know, or to have forgotten, that the current anti-immigrant demagoguery is the malignant next stage of the modern anti-immigrant movement started in 1979 or so by many of the usual right-wing suspects. (To find out more, look into John Tanton and the American Federation for Immigration Reform).

    That movement took a major next step about 15 years ago, during the reign of domestic fear-mongering, exploitative profiteering, and mideast warfare under King George I, with as one landmark event, the passage of Proposition 187 in California. I remember here in Oregon quite a spate of newspaper columns and other anti-immigrant demagoguery at that time.

    I suspect that some of folks bloviating here and across the blogosphere are just too young to remember (and so should be a little more reticent in voicing strong opinions about labelling and such). However, some are the continuation and next generation of recruits and shills for the immigration reduction movement. And comically, some just are so egocentric that they think history began when they came on the scene.

  • askquestions1st (unverified)
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    Don't worry PanchoPdx, no intent of publicly attributing ill-thoughts to you, whose previous posts I have appreciated.

    It is precisely because of this problem that I personally have started to try to remember to start addressing even "named" posters as "Whoever posted as ..." when there is seems to be a risk of misrepresented identity.

  • Steve (unverified)
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    Afghani constitution? You lost me.

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    Maybe the reason I have a different view on immigrants (legal or not) and minorities is because I grew up in the South. While I was born in Texas, my parents were "Yankees." As such, I was surrounded by racism and hatred, but was taught differently by my parents.

    Our town was very much a "white" town-- there was even a hanging tree outside of town that had been used in the past. Up until the early 80s there was still one of those "don't be caught here after the sun goes down" signs at the city limits.

    A movie called "Alamo Bay" depicts the problems the KKK caused in my hometown in the late 70s/early 80s against Vietnamese fishermen.

    I saw how friends (who were part Hawaiian) were treated when people thought they were part African American.

    My dad owned a cement contracting company, and one of his best workers was African American. One morning when we got on the school bus, Carlton was there helping my dad load everything onto the truck for that day's work.

    The kids on the bus immediately started asking why there was a [n-word] at our house. We explained that Carlton was one of our dad's employees. Their response? "You mean your dad actually pays him?"

    Was this in the 50s? The 60s? Or even the 70s? Nope. This would have either been in the late 80s or early 90s.

    Things were even worse once I married, as my husband is Vietnamese.

  • askquestions1st (unverified)
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    Steve wrote:

    Afghani constitution? You lost me.

    Come on, be honest. How much earlier in the logical analysis that you claim you value did you actually get lost? Or just turn off because you didn't like where it was headed?

  • Chuck Butcher (unverified)
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    Let's start with this, one of my crew of 3 is Mexican/American, he works hard, has a good attitude, and I like him. I could frankly care less if someone were a green Martian, if they had papers and filled the rest of the qualifications, I'd hire.

    Moving on, I pay as well or better than anyone in the area. My crew makes about $0.50 per $1.00 that I made when I started. They work hard, pay taxes, and do everything right. Their labor is so poorly rewarded because I am in competition with people paying considerably less. There are 2 problems, 1 is illegal non-tax paying hires and the other is a flood of cheap labor. My crew suffers and I suffer.

    I am in no way responsible for the mess any other country has made of itself, Central American, South American, European or other. Neither is any one of my crew. It is proposed that in the name of some touchy kissy feel good emotion that there is some kind of justice or rationale to continuing and aiding and abetting the creation of a blue collar underclass with an under-underclass beneath it. People who oppose out-sourcing of work seem to support the in-sourcing of job loss. This kind of crap leaves me in no doubt as to why it is so darn difficult for a progressive candidate to reach out to the blue-collar. To impute racism to the fact that I refuse to accept the crushing of people who work for me and folks like them is utter nonsense.

    Anne Martens writes some good stuff, this is a display of ignorace of real conditions that challenges the imagination. She sure better keep her job with the State because out here in the world of labor it gets real tough when reality is so ignored.

    Thanks Chuck

  • askquestions1st (unverified)
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    Chuck - If you make an effort to buy the lowest cost food, manufactured goods, or whatever that you can, than you most certainly are partially responsible for the world economic situation. You just refuse to take responsibility that you actually have.

    Beyond that, maybe you could try again to draw the deductive line that leads you to slander those who accurately call people out on anti-immigrant bigotry and racism, as "aiding and abetting the creation of a blue-collar underclass", and as "people who oppose out-sourcing of work" who "seem to support the in-sourcing of job loss"? Sounds like the typical case of making things up to support an argument.

    Everybody I know who stands up against anti-immigrant reactionism, also stands up even more aggressively against the exploitative treatment of working people regardless of their immigration status, against the looting of the American economy by corporate interests who support the criminal-in-chief and this administration - including his legislative plan to formally create the permanent underclass you purport to be so concerned about.

    And by the way, the people I know like me who work for someone else in the "real-world" just to get by every day really tire of business owners like you putting yourself forward as the ones of moral authority representing the "real world". (In the past, I also owned a small business and had to bid for contracts and make payroll, so I know both sides of that argument, too.) Your arrogant presumption that you speak for the "real-world" is obnoxious.

    From your first sentence, which sounds suspiciously like a variant of that old chestnut: "I'm not prejudiced, why I have a friend who is ...", to your false accusations that those who stand up against anti-immigrant bigotry are really just about creating a permanent underclass, your argumen pretty much reads as a rationalization of how you are generous towards all and have the best interests of society at heart --- if the whole picture would just conform to your views and work to your benefit. It's hard to find too much here that is an honest defense of justice and decency.

  • Former Salem Staffer (unverified)
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    Jason Atkinson has actually gotten beaten up for his stance on immigration, which is "I refuse to discriminate against anybody based on the color of their skin." That position cost him Lars Larson's endorsement. There's a back story here as to why this is coming up as an issue in the governor's race. RNC Chair Ken Mehlman came to Tigard last fall to speak to a group of Hispanic leaders in an attempt to bring them into the GOP. It was smart politics on his part; that is the fastest growing segment of the U.S. population. Anyway, after that event, which was open to the press and public, Mehlman spoke to a group of statewide GOP volunteers. The issue of immigration came up, and Mehlman mentioned the president's amnesty proposal...at which point the whole audience turned on him. It got pretty ugly there for a while as Mehlman tried to get them back. He eventually quashed the dissent by saying something like, "We need to get rid of anybody who is here illegally," at which point the audience came back to him. He ended his speech a few minutes later, and made the quickest retreat I've ever seen anybody make. So why is this coming up in the Governor's race? Felix Schein, campaign manager for Saxton, was in attendance, paying attention, and taking notes.

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    Chuck,

    I've had some intelligent excnhanges with askquestionsfirst in the past on Blue Oregon, but on this thread, he's just another troll. A lefty troll, but by definition a troll. He doesn't live up to his nickname, becaused he's as absolutely sure of his position and our racism as border raven is with his position as a righteous vgilante of the Right.

    Sic Transit Gloria Debate

  • Chuck Butcher (unverified)
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    I'm never particularly impressed by people who hide behind anonymity. I put myself out by name when I write and I put myself out in person on a campaign. This flood of cheap labor benefits only the rich and powerful. Which part of $0.50 on the $1.00 is it that this yahoo doesn't get? No, ignoramus, I don't buy the cheapest goods possible, in fact, I buy the very best possible. Hanging labels on someone because you don't like or agree is simple to do, but self-defeating. As for bigotry, if I have any at all, it is for people who define a group on the basis of feelings rather than fact, IE: bigots. I hired this guy over 2 Caucasians and kept him while letting another Caucasian go, and I pay him just as well as the rest. Now, I am very good at what I do, I use advanced and specialized tools and advanced techniques to produce a superior product. I am not only a "business owner" I am also the fastest and best on the site, I out produce everyone on the site while supervising it, that's the REAL world, bubba. I am the one pitching a snit because my people are being harmed, my crew, the people I pay. Now if you think that's being a moral authority because I'm a business owner alone, you can't think or you can't read. How exactly do you manage to kick me in the teeth for looking out for the interests of my workers and workers like them and then castigate me for being a business owner while you brag up being a wage earner? I get paid after everybody else does, and if I drop the ball, I go thousands of dollars in the hole and I don't ever have thousands of dollars to go in the hole with.

    Aiding and abetting is the action of helping something to exist and increasing it's existence, I am in direct competition with people who use and mis-use the illegal work force. These employers should be severely sanctioned, but that only creates an underground group of illegal aliens. Now, if you want to take up the question of who created the corrupt, racist, elitist, oligarchical states of Central and South America, maybe you ought to talk to the folks of the "mother" tongue, Spain & Portugal, later France & Germany. If you can think of one time period that the governments of Central and South America haven't been ruinous to the general citizenry, show me.

    By the way, since literacy seems to have evaded you, I never said anything about racism and the anti-immigration movement, I said I'm not. And I nver said anything about the "real world," I said real labor. There's a difference. If you think there's not, I invite you to come on out and try it, but you better be real tough and ready to make crappy money.

    Anyone is more than welcome to take apart anything I write or say on the basis of logic and rationality, and I won't get an attitude, but don't impute things I didn't say to me and don't bother to put up strawmen to knock down. You have every opportunity to find out who I am, it's out there, so your ignorance is self-induced. Chuck

  • askquestions1st (unverified)
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    Chuck --- For all your boring huffing and puffing, it's hard to find any rebuttal to the challenge concisely stated in the second paragraph of what I wrote. You made an accusation, your own words are quoted there, against views expressed by Anne, myself, and others. You were called out to prove it and you didn't. Your "aiding and abetting" line is a common semantic trick employed by the right wing and others of limited reasoning skills these days of accusing anyone whose opposes the polices and actions they advocate as being de-facto causative or approving of the condition they oppose. A fairly irrational and illogical argument.

    So instead of responding to the challenge, you start blustering and throwing more accusations that you assert were made without citing any proof of that. Which leads one to suppose that perhaps you'll found those "accusations" more to be logical conclusions you had to draw for yourself based the logical analyses presented. That's interesting in itself, don't you think?

    And by the way semantic quibbles about "real world" and "real labor" are beneath a serious intellect. You lobbed that tired old accusation against government and government employees that only folks like you have the life experience to know the score: this is a display of ignorace of real conditions that challenges the imagination. She sure better keep her job with the State because out here in the world of labor it gets real tough when reality is so ignored.. You were called out on this point also and you obviously didn't like it. But you didn't have any answer except to again bluster that no one could possibly know what you know right now - I invite you to come on out and try it, but you better be real tough and ready to make crappy money.

    So here's the bottom line question for rough, tough, "real", folks like you and Pat Ryan: Precisely what legislation and enforcement to do you advocate concering immigration? There's a lot on the legislative table right now to comment on, as Anne quite perceptively did. Immigration "reform" promises to be the wedge issue that nativist, regressive candidates will try to use this fall election to retain their failing grasp on power, and right now progressive candidates don't appear to have a good response - except to get to the truth of the values behind the nativist, regressive position.

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    Pat Ryan: Precisely what legislation and enforcement to do you advocate concering immigration?

    Here's what I've already posted (which seems to bolster my argument that you aren't really paying attention to the specifics):

    I want the state and federal governments to demand that employers hire only legal workers, and enforce that single law.----March 21st on Brown is the new Black

    As for actual legislation, I'll hold my nose and support Kennedy/Feingold with the Dick Durbin DREAM amendment (which is the exact position taken by <ahref=http: www.lulac.org="" advocacy="" issues="" immigration="" comprehensivereform.html="">LULAC

  • Tom Civiletti (unverified)
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    Pat Ryab wrote [again]:

    I want the state and federal governments to demand that employers hire only legal workers, and enforce that single law.----March 21st on Brown is the new Black

    This is the crux of the whole immigration issue. It is almost totally ignored in the public debate. The immigration problem is caused mostly by employers' desire for a large supply of low-wage workers. Republicans, who have more support from these employers, are also supported by the strict law-and-order folks and the racist anti-dark skin folks who abhore illegal immigration. So what do they do? Deny reality. Of course, many Democrats are guilty of playing this game as well, but the Republicans are epicenter of this smoke-and-mirrors approach to immigration.

  • Ross Williams (unverified)
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    This flood of cheap labor benefits only the rich and powerful.

    Apparently "they" don't agree with you. Unless you are claiming that immigrants are "rich and powerful". The problem, as you note, is that there are employers taking advantage of immigrants and not paying them a living wage. You apparently blame the immigrants for this. Why don't you target the folks who are taking advantage of them? I guess because they are rich and powerful and its easier to go after the poor and the powerless.

    That is the history of racism in this country.

  • Chuck Butcher (unverified)
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    ask... you really don't pay attention. 50% decrease in wage in 20 years. The truly horrid acceleration in wage depression has occurred in the last 6 years. Estimates vary, but at least one regarding the 900,000 net job increase 03-04 showed nearly 2/3 went to illegals despite them being 15% of the job force. Accepting that it might not be a neutral study, even a large adjustment of figures leaves a disconcertinly large percentage. I assumed that since you're so hot on the subject that you at least looked at the numbers, even the gentle ones don't help your argument. Sorry, your little pen name led me astray.

    As for Anne's State employment being "real" why don't you go ahead and show me the competitve forces at work? Which illegal will wreck her income or take her job, which cheating contractor will break her employer? As for huffing and puffing, if you spend an hour a day in a gym doing hard work outs, one day with us will kill you, 33F, slush from the sky, muck on the boots, 20 lbs on your waist, an 18" handled 28 oz waffle head hammer in your numb hand or a 120 psi air gun that weighs 8 lbs and will counter sink a 3 1/4" long x 3/16" dia piece of steel into solid wood amongst other implements that can destroy a human body for accesories are not for the faint of heart. That's a medium bad day. You better be able to solve problems on the move in a bad environment in dangerous positions, your solution is going to be there 100 years after you're dust. The crew is going 4 10s and I've gone 6-7 / 10-12s for over a decade, you bet I'm rough and tough, you've managed to prove you're clueless. Oh, I've proved I'm crazy, because I like what I do.

    Real world solutions? SS# / name matching data base, you don't match, no hire & arrest for attempted fraud. You hire despite knowlege, 1 yr Davis Bacon wage per job description sanction per incident violation. Any official contact with illegal determination, arrest, 60 days on conviction, followed by deportation. Any social service contact with illegal determination - arrest for fraud, sentence on conviction, followed by deportation.

    Go ahead and pander to some obscure guilt and serve the interests of the plutocrats with your insular little world view, but there are real serious consequences attendent to your sympathy. You seem to forget that there is a breaking point when people are downtrodden and when it is passed, the reaction is usually violent, unreasoning, and quite xenophobic. If you think my solutions are draconian, consider the probable outcome of the continued impoverishment of the workers. Maybe you should take a good look at the close of the 19th century and the near miss with systemic anarchy. The disparity of wealth in this country is only matched by dictatorships and historically the 19th century robber-barons. Chuck

  • askquestions1st (unverified)
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    I think Tom and Ross made the point well in response to Pat that was exactly the starting observation for my comments on this thread. Honesty demands we recognize that arguing one just wants the laws enforced against "illegal" immigrants is intellectual legerdemain. For as we have seen in Congress the last few days, the legislative choices of declaring who is "illegal", and why, is where the xenophobia, nativism, bigotry, and racism lies. Similarly, honesty also demands we recognize that proponents of this argument may not be making this argument with the cynical intent of misleading. Rather they may not fully appreciate the nature of the road they are headed down, or at least the company they are keeping, by embracing this view.

    The other point to be made, as Tom and Ross eloquently demonstrate, is that folks of goodwill who stand against anti-immigrant reactionism in all its forms well understand the roots of that reactionism lie in the fear and lack of power felt by folks who are being threatened economically. And so those folks of goodwill stand just as vigorously against the sociopathic, self-serving political and economic interests responsible for creating that state of fear and disempowerment.

    So Pat, in all honesty because from your posts you seem like a reasonable guy, and without trying to attach myself to Tom and Ross's comments since they may not welcome that, I am interested in hearing your response to the points Tom and Ross have made here.

    And although it's certainly not your obligation Pat, I'm hopeful that your response can talk Chuck down just a bit. There is a lot more to be gained by working people across the political spectrum, and regardless of immigration status, if we keep our united focus on opposing the political and economic interests who right now are cynically doing everything they can to hold onto power by turning immigration into a wedge issue.

  • George Bender (unverified)
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    I can't believe how foggy most of the above rhetoric is. Calling your opponents racists is not a rational argument, it's a way to avoid dealing with your opponents' arguments. This is not about race, it's about class.

    Working-class people such as myself do not want to be forced to compete with poor Mexicans for our jobs and wages. The U.S. has long had a cheap labor policy. Allowing massive illegal immigration just makes it worse. We will fight you every step of the way.

  • Chuck Butcher (unverified)
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    Nobody ever talks me down when I'm called a racist and a bigot and an officious dope. Pat won't even bother, we've met. We like each other. Intellectual legerdermain my patoot, I don't care that racists want something for their reasons, my reasons have nothing to do with race or xenophobia and everything to do with my fellows economic well being. You may be so insulated in your employment that the harm doesn't touch you, well it hits real hard out here and we were already hurting.

    Now, here's some of what we face in this deal, www.newsforreal.com or maybe take a look at hoglow.blogspot.com for a reasoned response.

    Yes, this is class warfare, GWB & ilk declared war on us 6 years ago. they've ruled with fear and duplicity ever since. I have opposed their crap every step of the way, I won't go along with their Muslim xenophobia or any other phobia. I don't scare worth spit, my work says so, my play says so, my politics say so. The only thing trying to scare me accomplishes is to make me stubborn and determined. I'm running for Congress in the 2nd CD and I mean to win, ever looked at the voting record of 2nd CD? I ain't scared. I figure I can run waldenbush's record down his throat with Dems, Inds, and some of his Rs, because I'm just exactly what he's never run into. I am just exactly what you see and hear, I don't tone down or half step to please anybody, you don't like what you see, don't vote for me, because that's what you're going to get. If you want what you see, give me a hand, carry my water to your friends, I can't button hole every Dem in 2nd CD. Send some $s, I'm spending entire weekends driving and speaking, over 1600 mi in 2 weekends and that's a drop in the bucket. I won't back off on illegal labor, this is the poorest and most blue collar of Oregon's Districts. This is who I'm representing. I don't represent the Anne Martens or Weyrhauser or GWB, the plutocrats, corporations, and insulated elites can take care of themselves whoever wins, but the plain old 2nd CD gets screwed when they're ignored. I've already proven I can work with people in politics and I can do what no one expects and I don't have to give away the farm to do it. I can do it because I start out with the facts on my side and I include people and I make sure they know it's about principle and as an added bonus, benefit. And I adamently oppose the die-hard hear nothings because they're a lost cause, just like "ask..." is. these responses have nothing to do with changing "ask..." mind, it's opposing his argument, in public so there are clear lines drawn.

    I employ 4 people, buy high quality US built tools and equipment and buy materials locally so that I'm a good citizen of my area and create more work for my fellows. I give a damn. So when my fellows are harmed by law breakers I'm not in the least amused or sympathetic to the miscreants.

  • askquestions1st (unverified)
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    George and Chuck - I think we see quite clearly who and what people like you represent. And it most certainly is not decent, concerned, plain old hard working people across the state and across the country like the rest of us.

  • Steve (unverified)
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    "it most certainly is not decent, concerned, plain old hard working people across the state and across the country like the rest of us."

    Sorry, I have to disagree. Mr Butcher is right - think about what their presence does to the wages of those who are here legally. Since they work without protection of law, they basically screw the people who have jumped thru hoops to be here legally and legitimate employers with regards to pay/benefits by decreasing their pricing and wage power.

    Giving all illegal aliens amnesty today would only cause the same situation 10 years down the road. This is why I am confused unions don't step up and do something to help workers here legally instead of the right-wingers who hire illegal aliens cheaply.

    Sorry - can't comment on how this affects wages in Afghanistan.

  • Ross Williams (unverified)
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    "You seem to forget that there is a breaking point when people are downtrodden and when it is passed, the reaction is usually violent, unreasoning, and quite xenophobic."

    That reaction is quite apparent here. The question is whether it will be challenged or exploited.

    "Calling your opponents racists is not a rational argument, it's a way to avoid dealing with your opponents' arguments. This is not about race, it's about class.

    Working-class people such as myself do not want to be forced to compete with poor Mexicans for our jobs and wages. "

    So we have a class conflict between the working-class and the "poor Mexicans" class? That sounds an awful lot like a traditional American racial conflict.

    "Since they work without protection of law, they basically screw the people who have jumped thru hoops to be here legally"

    Thats an interesting defense of illegal businesses who break laws protecting workers. As far as I can tell, there is not a single worker protection law that makes a distinction between immigrants and non-immigrants.

  • Steve (unverified)
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    "not a single worker protection law that makes a distinction between immigrants and non-immigrants"

    I mis-spoke, but in effect if someone is here illegally and gets paid below min wage or have their rights violated - What are the odds they will file a complaint?

    <h2>Yes, you're right, those who employ illegal aliens are guilty also. In the end, however, effectively it is the legitimate employers/employees who get hurt.</h2>

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