Tag Archives: build a wall

Border ‘crisis’ appears to be overcooked

I’m going to speak from the cuff here, but I believe it needs to be said. Donald Trump’s decision to deploy National Guard troops to our southern border appears to me to be a solution in search of a problem.

The president keeps hyping an immigration “crisis” along our border with Mexico. He is implying that the border is being overrun by illegal immigrants. He suggests that the only way to stem that deluge of people sneaking in is to send in ground troops; they need to patrol the border, shoring up security already being provided by Border Patrol, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials, local police and electronic surveillance equipment.

When did it get to this point? What is the president trying to prove with this initiative?

I don’t get it. I cannot fathom when this matter escalated to a point that requires a virtual militarization of our border with one of our nation’s closest allies.

Barack Obama deported a record number of illegal immigrants during his two terms as president of the United States. George W. Bush created the Department of Homeland Security after the 9/11 attacks, giving the federal government another agency responsible for protecting us against potential terrorist entry.

Trump takes office after campaigning on a promise to build a “big, beautiful wall” and forcing Mexico to pay for it. Mexico won’t pay a dime for the wall.

Why in the world is there this need to send National Guardsmen and women to the border when we have plenty of civilian resources available to do the job of catching people who are trying to sneak into the United States illegally?

This looks to me to be a made-up crisis.

Now it’s the Germans feeling Trump’s wrath

Let’s see. How many more vital U.S. allies can the president of the United States anger?

He tells Mexico that it will pay for a wall across our nations’ shared border; Mexico says “no way, dude!”

Trump calls Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Trumbull and then berates him over his country’s immigration policy before hanging up on him.

The president first accuses his immediate predecessor of wiretapping his offices and then accuses the British intelligence agency of colluding with President Obama; the Brits denied it, angrily.

Now it’s the Germans, who Trump now says have to pay more for their participation in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

Germany has rejected Trump’s demand. The Germans say they don’t owe a “debt” to NATO and won’t do what the U.S. president has suggested.

Meanwhile, the 45th president treats Russia with kid gloves; he calls Vladimir Putin a “strong leader” and says he wants to make nice with the Russians, who are doing all they can to make life miserable for the United States and our allies.

Who’s next for Trump? Maybe he can build a wall across our northern border to keep Americans from fleeing to Canada … and then demand the Canadians pay for it, too!

Publicity stunt makes valuable point about a wall

A member of Mexico’s congress has performed a masterful publicity stunt that illustrates something quite nicely about Donald J. Trump’s desire to build a “beautiful wall” along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Braulio Guerra climbed a portion of the wall that’s already been erected. He sat atop it and then boasted about how easy it was to scale it.

He sat 30 feet above the ground.

Hmmm. How does he do that?

The congressman’s point is a valid one. It is that anyone who wants to scale a wall, or tunnel beneath it will find a way. A wall doesn’t protect us any better than what U.S. Border Patrol and local law enforcement agencies already are doing to ensure our nation’s safety.

In a video he distributed, the congressman said, “It would be simple for me to jump into the United States, which shows that it is unnecessary and totally absurd to build a wall.”

I won’t belabor the point that walling us off from our neighbors is patently in-American on its face. Yet the president of the United States keeps insisting that we’re being inundated with criminals of all stripes who are invading the United States for the sole purpose of preying on Americans.

My wife and I recently visited the border region and witnessed up close a tiny part of what the Border Patrol is doing to protect Americans. Officers are stopping every northbound vehicle at points along the Rio Grande Valley. They quizzed us briefly about our destination, then sent us on our way.

Did they stop anyone? Yes. We witnessed them pulling a motorist over, presumably for more, shall we say, “extreme vetting.”

Can we stop every single illegal immigrant from sneaking into this country? No. We’ve never been able to stop all of them.

A wall won’t do it, either.

$20 million in the bank to build wall … where’s rest of it?

Donald J. Trump vows to build a “great, great wall” across our southern border.

It’s going to cost as much as $20 billion — give or take a few billion bucks. How much money does the president have on hand to start the job?

Department of Homeland Security officials say they’ve got about $20 million on hand, in the bank, to start the job.

The gap between 20 billion and 20 million dollars is, um, really yuuuge, man!

Where’s the rest of it going to come from? Trump says Mexico will pay for it. The Mexican government says no … it won’t pay. Can the head of one sovereign government force the head of another one to do something he doesn’t want to do?

I guess we could go to war with ’em, right?

That won’t happen. Quite obviously.

According to Reuters: “Trump has said he will ask Congress to pay for what existing funds cannot cover and that Mexico will be pressured to pay back U.S. taxpayers at a later date.

“Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan has said he will include funding for a border wall in the budget for next fiscal year. He has estimated the cost to be between $12 billion and $15 billion.”

The Ryan estimate falls short of what Homeland Security officials have said; they place the cost at more than $21 billion.

This wall-building stuff is making my head spin.

Trump continues to court the support of fiscal conservatives. But he wants to spend $54 billion additional on defense spending, while cutting other programs to pay for boosting the Pentagon budget; he wants to spend $1 trillion on a road and bridge rebuilding program.

Oh, and he wants to cut taxes, too!

What does that do to the national debt? The annual budget deficit?

Does the president pile more debt on us while blowing the budget apart? Hey, I think he said the Obama administration’s “disastrous” fiscal policy was something he intended to fix.

Construction of this proposed wall, so help me, is going to cause many more headaches than it is intended to cure.

Hunters seek to blame ‘illegals’ for their own blunder

I can hear the chants now: only in Texas would this happen.

Maybe, maybe not. Anyhow, here’s the crux of it.

Two hunters — Michael Bryant and Walker Daughetry — have been charged with discharging deadly weapons illegally. They accidentally shot each other while on a hunting excursion in Presidio County along the Rio Grande River.

But wait! The shooting took place in early January. When they called for help, they then blamed the incident on “illegal aliens” they said were crossing the border.

It turns out they lied to investigators. There were no “illegal aliens.” They had discharged their weapons “in the direction of others,” meaning each other, which is a third-degree felony.

It gets even better than that.

Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller, the loudmouth advocate for building a wall along our state’s border with Mexico, posted the bogus story on his Facebook page. Miller — who had been considered for a spot in Donald J. Trump’s Cabinet — said the incident proves the need to build the wall, per the president’s persistent mantra.

Well, the truth has come out. The hunters made it up. They were too embarrassed to tell authorities what really happened.

Miller’s Facebook post has since disappeared. The two men face some jail time if they’re convicted.

Is this what one would call “fake news”?

Hoping to size up how Trump plans to wall off U.S.

It is my fondest wish — for the moment — to lay eyes on some real estate down yonder.

I intend to take a look at just how Donald John “Smart Person” Trump intends to wall off the southern U.S. border with Mexico, to stop all them “drug dealers, rapists, murderers” and even some of those “good people, I’m sure” who are trying to sneak into this country.

John Kelly, the secretary of homeland security, said this week he thinks the wall can be built — start to finish — in two years. Of course, the president insists that Mexico is going to pay for it — apparently presuming that the Mexican government is “sending” all those criminals into the United States.

The wall, of course, would have to be erected on U.S. soil. Still, that doesn’t matter to Trump, who keeps insisting — despite Mexico’s stubborn refusal — that our neighbors will foot the bill.

Good luck with that.

I’ll report back to you when — or if — I get my chance to see it for myself. I might even ask around to see how the locals feel about it.

Stay tuned, dear reader.

You mean we have four whole years of this?

Donald John Trump is making me crazy.

Yes, I am about to go nuts watching the evening news as it regards the 45th president of the United States.

He’s been in office for seven whole days and it seems like he’s been there … um, forever!

He signs an executive order starting to repeal the Affordable Care Act; he accuses millions of illegal immigrants of voting for Hillary Clinton, then announces a “major investigation” into the matter; he starts a trade war with Mexico over that country’s refusal to pay for the “beautiful wall” he wants to build; he continues to cozy up to Vladimir Putin; then several key State Department staffers quit, leaving him with some senior advisers in that key Cabinet agency.

He’s at war with the media. Chaos reins.

Good grief, folks! I cannot stand this.

Honest to goodness, I can’t quite put my finger on which development startles me the most.

No Drama Obama sought to run the country in a more even-handed manner. Did it work? Well, yes. It did. The nation is better off than it was when Barack Obama took office. He turned it all over to “Smart Person” Trump.

My eternal optimism is being tested like hardly ever before. Why? Because the president of the United States — who took office without a single solitary moment of public service experience — is seeking to chart a new course through some unknown territory.

I don’t want to wish my life away, but … is it 2020 yet?

Build a wall? With our money, Mr. President? No thank you

Donald J. Trump is continuing his war of words with our nation’s southern neighbor.

The president says he still plans to build a wall between the United States and Mexico. He keeps making boasts about making Mexico pay for it because “they’re sending rapists, murderers and drug dealers” into the United States.

Of course, the president never has stipulated who he means by “they.” Let’s presume something for a moment: Trump is referring to the Mexican government.


Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has responded on two fronts.

First, he is considering scrapping a planned visit to the United States to meet with the new president over his latest remarks about the wall.

Second, he’s continuing to insist that Mexico ain’t paying for the wall. Period. End of discussion.

According to The Associated Press: “Pena Nieto said he regrets and condemns the decision to build the wall, saying ‘I have said time and time again, Mexico will not pay for any wall.'”

So, the question must be posed to Donald Trump: What part of “no” doesn’t he understand?

Is he going to storm Mexico’s presidential palace at Los Pinos with weapons drawn and demand they pay? Is he going to launch an all-out trade war with one of this nation’s major trading partners?

Absent Mexico paying for the wall, then the final option is to saddle U.S. taxpayers with a monstrous bill to pay for a project that has little chance of succeeding at what Trump intends for it: which is to stop illegal immigration in its tracks.

He calls U.S. immigration policy the equivalent of “catch and release.”

If the Mexican president were to ask me, I’d say he ought to go to the meeting with Trump and tell him to his face: We won’t pay for it! Then he ought to tell his colleague: Mr. President, let’s work together to strengthen border security with more reasonable and achievable strategies; this build-a-wall notion is nutty and it will … not … work!

Perhaps he also can tell the U.S. president that he ought to apologize for demonizing the Mexican government — and Mexican citizens in general. That won’t happen, but President Pena Nieto ought to go on the record with the demand.

Trump brings his campaign promise to where it started

Donald J. Trump has brought it all home.

The next president of the United States is still insisting that Mexico is going to pay for that big wall he plans to build across our southern border. He pitched the wall during his first day campaigning for the presidency.

It’ll be a repayment, he says. U.S. taxpayers are going to foot the bill initially, but Trump insists that Mexico will pay us back for the billions of dollars we’ll spend. He wants Americans to pay for sealing off the southern border “for the sake of speed.”

Good bleeping luck with that, Mr. President-elect.


As with virtually all of his proposals, Trump doesn’t specify just how he intends to make Mexico pay. He doesn’t deliver any details on how he will force a sovereign government to fork over the money to this government. Nor does he explain how he is going to persuade Mexican government officials to change their minds after saying quite loudly that in no way would Mexico pay for the wall.

No, the president-elect doesn’t operate that way. He functions with bluster and bravado. He issues threats — even to trusted allies and, in this case, a nation that shares a 2,000-mile-long border with the United States.

It is my belief, too, that Trump has misstated grossly the current U.S. government’s performance as it seeks to stem the tide of illegal immigration. President Obama might go down as the deporter in chief, having overseen record numbers of deportations of undocumented immigrants coming into this country during his eight years as president.

Our borders traditionally have been unguarded. Our immigration enforcement, though, has continued. Have we been able to secure every foot of our borders — both northern and southern? No. That has never — not in the history of our republic — been possible.

Does a wall provide the ultimate solution? No. Desperate people will find a way to sneak through any barrier we erect. Walls don’t necessarily deter the most determined individuals.

As for saddling U.S. taxpayers with the initial bill to pay the wall, Trump will have to explain where he’ll get the money. He’s going to cut taxes, remember? He’s going to spend a trillion bucks on improving our bridges and highways, too. He’s going to shore up our military.

Build a wall? With what, Mr. President-elect.

Be sure, also, to tell us precisely how you intend to force Mexico to foot the bill.

Texas lawmakers oppose Trump wall … who knew?


Texas happens to constitute the largest single-state border with Mexico.

Do members of the Texas congressional delegation endorse Donald Trump’s notion of building a wall across our nation’s southern border?

Umm. No.


No Democratic member of the delegation favors the wall. Republicans who comprise a large majority of the state’s congressional delegation, interestingly, also are decidedly cool to the idea.

The Texas Tribune reports that Trump’s notion of building the wall runs headlong into a politically conservative principle. Check this out: “Among many Texas Republicans in Congress, the concept, while popular with the party’s base, collides with another conservative tenant: eminent domain.

“A wall would require the confiscation of ranching land near the Rio Grande, and several Texas Republicans expressed concern about the federal government taking away property — often held by families for generations — and the legal tangles that would inevitably arise from that.”

Well now. Do you think congressional Republicans will go along with federal seizure of private property, which happens to be a huge issue throughout our large state where private property owners possess almost every acre of land? There happen to be plenty of Republicans in New Mexico, Arizona and California who also adhere to the principle that private ownership is more important than a government takeover of property.

Eminent domain looms as the bogeyman that well could doom Trump’s ill-considered assertion that building a “beautiful wall” will end illegal immigration.