Archive for the ‘Minnesota Snow Birds’ Category

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IMMIGRANTS

July 18, 2012

Have I been captured by the aliens and do not know it?  It is the only explanation I have left to explain this negative fixation on immigration that permeates our world today.

 A few days ago, we were seated near a table of four business men for lunch.  As our meal progressed, the discussion “next door” grew louder, and it was soon apparent by the conversation, that Hispanic Immigrants formed the primary topic of discussion.

First of all, these white senior men obviously were snow-birds- back “visiting” in Minnesota for the summer from their “homes” in Arizona.  Needless to say, they were still harping on the border security and the rights of Arizona to solve this “problem” themselves since Obama won’t.  Do these men read?  Hispanic immigration has been a NET ZERO since 2009.  If there is a problem, it happened before the Obama Presidency.  It is a fact that efforts to stop illegal immigration have been STEPPED UP by Obama, over that of the previous eight years.

The short-term plan for children of immigrants was part of the heated discussion….again, when this was announced, I heard it said this was a temporary plan, which would allow the US Immigration officials to focus on those illegal aliens that were rightfully targeted for deportation.  Did I make this up? – No I just fact-checked it.  I remembered correctly.  Now, of course, I am not naïve, I know the timing was most likely geared to create a political advantage as well, but nonetheless,  the anger voiced was born from being out-smarted, not from a rational review of the plan.

As their loud conversation distracted me,  so many thoughts went through my mind:  When this country was in its infancy, Arizona, Texas and surrounds were a part of a region known as Mexico.   That means that near as I can tell, these men are the immigrants…spending one day more in Arizona than Minnesota to save taxes. .  I’ve ranted about this before, so enough said.

In fact, as I looked at these men, they are probably no more than two generations away from being  immigrants themselves – to Minnesota!  Most of this state was populated by whites in the last 150 years – and MOST of those whites were immigrants…Germans, Scandinavians, and more that generally began a movement from Europe post-US  civil war times.   Of course, from their demonstrated pomposity, one would think they all were offspring of Daughters of the American Revolution!

“The Hispanic problem is out of control and will be the ruin of this great country” remarked one of the men.  Really?  Fact is, Asians have become the largest group of immigrants.  Fact is, businessmen like the aging lunchers most likely are among those temporarily  ok with Asian immigrants…as long as they fill the skills gap needed in the work force and plan on going home when their 3 year visa expires.   And I won’t even get into the reason for the skill gap being the sad state of affairs much of our educational system is in because  men of their ilk are still thinking “educate for 20thcentury needs”. I think their rationale is that if they shout loud enough, they can bring the good old days back – those days when their expertise was valued.

 

Interspersed among the Arizona immigrant issue were enough racially-tinged slurs about Obama, I was tempted to interrupt and point out that although Obama’s African heritage is representative of a recent African immigration, they should take note that the importation of Africans as slaves began in the 1600s – making them longer residents of the US than most of those at the table.

Fortunately for all of us, I chose not to make a bigger scene than they already were doing.  There were enough comments made to convince me these guys would be supporters of the Romney executive order signed on Bunker Hill Day, June 17, 2003, that eradicated Massachusetts affirmative action policies but I held my tongue – knowing whatever I might say would not make an impact – just a scene. 

Although I confess, I had a difficult time not responding when that familiar Republican war- cry of “my money” was repeated over and over.  Someone should tell these guys that taxes assessed by representatives elected by the majority of citizens no longer qualify as “my money”.  They become the cost we each pay to live in this country and enjoy its benefits.  And we all have a choice:  if we do not want to pay; we can move out.

Since this foursome looked to be about my age, I would say most of them will be around for another 15-20 years – long enough to see not just the Hispanics, but the combined minorities of the US population “tip the scale” and the brief 200 years of white majority in our lengthly history of 13,000 years of North American civilization will come to an end. 

In the meantime, I doubt we can count on them as supporters of moving our metro area to a world-class population hub….I doubt they understand that white supremacy does not trump interculturalism in the global world of today.   

I can only hope they each live long enough to be governed by those for whom they have such disregard – when the whites of the US become the minority of the country’s population.

 

 

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MIGRANT MOOCHERS

October 10, 2010

Finally, a particular touchy situation has come to the fore in this election cycle in Minnesota. Some have actually publically raised the issue of Minnesota Snowbirds who carefully stay out of the state one day more than 6 months so they can avoid paying taxes. Now open for discussion is that topic our Minnesota Nice attitude has sheltered and protected for years. We no longer need pretend this is acceptable behavior. But as I have listened to the discourse, and read the spot-on Letters to the Editors from Michael Schook and Craig Brown in the STRIB this morning, I feel we are still tip-toe-ing around some of the most despicable aspects of this issue.

It has been my observation that these “entitled” citizens are active and tax-paying Minnesotans for 20-30 years as they take advantage of an environment conducive to amassing their fortune in an atmosphere they deem anti-business. Just think what they could have made had we been a state friendly to their endeavors! And did you ever wonder why they did not move away during those years if our taxes and investments in the state were so harmful? Or is it simply their nature as the entitled moochers to feel they deserve more?

Yes, I have some bias. These are the men parodied on MAD MEN; these are the good old boys that tried hard to protect their privileged worlds in the 60s and 70s – and keep women in their place at home. These are the men that reaped the rewards often earned by underlings. These are the men that most of us learned were not quite as smart as their facades. These are the men that see no reason not to hire illegal immigrants and migrant workers; after all, it saves them money so they can become migrant moochers. These are the men we may all know and love for their good hearts; but that does not excuse their attitudes.

But I digress – my actual issue is that after that short period of time investing efforts for a good return, these folks then become part time moochers for another 15-25 years. Each year, they return to Minnesota for that one day less than 6 months – in spite of it being such a bad place…and while they are here, they use the roads and infrastructure, expect police and fire protection, tap into local medical services and generally are fairly vocal about what needs to be changed. And somehow, they feel they are clever for beating the system; and feel justified to do so–despite not paying their fair share.

So every winter, like the robber barons and landed gentry of times gone by, they invade the tranquil, sunny regions to our south, oft times full of disdain and fear of the local inhabitants of the playgrounds and gated communities to which they escape. There, they surround themselves with snow “birds of a feather”, and try to recreate mini-Minnesotas of which they dream – frequently destroying the ecological balance of their half time homes.

But even this seasonal migration of the moochers might be tolerable except that many, as they continue to age, tire of showing off accumulated wealth, have satisfied their wanderlust, develop health issues that make it more difficult to participate in the migration ritual, or simply want to spend their last years with their family, so they migrate one last time – back to Minnesota.

Oh please, spare us! Unfortunately that means they are back for another 10-20 years-often with less net worth upon which to be taxed-much of which has been gifted, protected, or spent, but still expecting all the services and support of the state….yes, that same state in which they don’t feel they need to invest but certainly want a voice.

I doubt we will settle this issue this election cycle, but thank you to those that have allowed it to surface. It gives me hope that sometime in the future, Minnesota will pass our own style of targeted Immigration Laws to control these migrant moochers from robbing our state.