So, new RPV Executive Director Shaun Kenney (full disclosure, close friend of mine) takes some time to sit with center-left activists on the immigration issue. Much of his talk centers around thanking them for stopping by, talking about how it’s important to talk to folks who don’t necessarily agree with them, and an observation on the debate that was miles above anything discussed on the matter since…
I genuinely believe that both sides of this debate want to do the right thing; it’s just a matter of getting those wires to touch.
It didn’t take long for the wires to vehemently protest. Soon Greg Letiecq (also a friend) was slamming Shaun for advocating amnesty – something which, I confess, I didn’t catch in the video excerpt Greg provided, although Greg and Shaun have made clear their disagreement on the issue for years. Soon Jeanine Martin and Brian Schoeneman (whom I would also call friends, but as I’ve never met either of them in person, I don’t know what they would think), joined in the fray, with Martin claiming Shaun would hurt poor people and Brian calling Jeanine and Greg racists (in the comments).
Yeah, it’s that kind of party.
Sadly, as both sides spent their time reminding themselves how wonderful they are – hey, we’re bloggers; it’s what we do – the questions I raised almost two months ago remain completely outside of the discussion:
- What are we doing to encourage entrepreneurs to come to America?
- What labor shortages in the American economy (such as, health care) can be alleviated via immigration reform?
- How can we use our immigration policies to take advantage of capital flight in areas around the world, so that those who own that capital will feel more welcome here (along with their capital, of course)?
- In other words, how can we use immigration reform as a supply-side economic opportunity, rather than merely an argument about Keynesian “aggregate demand”?
As I stated in that post, anything that doesn’t address the above subjects is just noise…which is exactly what we got from nearly everyone concerned – a lot of heat, but very little light.
As for Shaun, I’m glad he’s willing to talk to folks outside his political comfort zone. At the very least, we all need to remember how to disagree without being disagreeable.
I would have been much happier if he and Mr. Sajur had spent some time talking about the above topics….
Cross-posted to the right-wing liberal