California Dreaming is Becoming a (Nightmare) Reality
During a recent visit to California, many people seemed to be engrossed by the spectacle of Nadya Sulman, the narcissistic young woman who underwent in vitro fertilization procedures which resulted in the birth of octuplets to complement her previous six children. The unmarried and unemployed Sulman has been milking the public for years. First of all, she has nursed a workman’s compensation injury for eight years and been receiving hundreds of dollars per child in subsidies each month from the taxpayers while living in her parents’ home and undergoing multiple cosmetic surgeries. Now, she wants you to contribute money to her family.
Gloria Allred, the obnoxious publicity seeking attorney, sought to interject herself into the octuplet controversy by promising cash to Sulman, provided the children were placed in a more appropriate setting to be determined by her altruistic clients. While one might be tempted to agree to such a placement, it does beg the question as to why the California Department of Social Services has not been out to visit the Sulman residence and to check on the children already? This woman cannot possibly be a fit parent.
Watching the Sulman media circus reminded me of Mrs. Jellyby, the lunatic philanthropist in the Charles Dickens novel “Bleak House.” Mrs. Jellby spent all of her waking hours soliciting funds for deprived children in distant foreign lands while her own offspring lived in a state of squalor and neglect. These children suffered due to their mother’s complete indifference to their welfare. Mrs. Jellyby was too busy saving the world to care for her own family. The progressive social activists in California are much the same.
Sometimes, it is easier for the public to focus its attention on one celebrated case rather than the big picture. While everyone can safely opine about how selfish and wrong it was of Sulman to put her own needs ahead of those of her unfortunate children, it is not politically correct to address the immediate problems that have placed the State of California on the fast track for insolvency. The public can rail about Sulman, but not about the millions of undocumented workers and welfare recipients that are commonplace throughout the state.
Consider a sampling of news stories which dominated the headlines in Los Angeles last week:
An immigration judge ruled that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents violated the procedural rights of an illegal alien arrested and detained following a raid upon a factory in Van Nuys. One hundred and thirteen employees of the same factory were also found to be illegal aliens. During the sweep an additional man, Gregorio Perez Cruz, was also taken into custody. After being processed and interrogated, the facts showed that this twenty-four year old individual was also living and working in the USA illegally.
Case closed? Not so, fast! What about this gentleman’s civil rights?
Cruz obtained free legal counsel from the American Civil Liberties Union and sought to have his arrest and detention voided. According to published reports, the immigration judge ruled that ICE lacked “probable cause” to detain Cruz and that in placing him in a crowded detention facility (which was no doubt crowded due to the presence of his fellow factory workers) created a coercive and hostile environment. The mere fact that he turned out to be another illegal alien was beside the point. Why the man had to wait to receive food and water while in custody and he had to sleep on a floor. Oh, the indignity of it all!
What type of luxurious custodial accommodations would this young gentleman have received if he had been arrested in his native Mexico?
Given the limited resources available to the immigration enforcement bureau, such large scale raids are rarely, if ever, random operations, but the result of weeks and months of careful planning and surveillance. When a large number of aliens are taken into custody from a single place of employment, it is seldom accidental. Nevertheless, an idiotic administrative law judge found that there was no probable cause to justify arresting an undocumented worker found in a manufacturing plant with more than one hundred other illegal workers. If this decision stands, the individual will be permitted to apply for full citizenship despite his former status.
Importing poverty is costly. Low skilled, poorly educated immigrants and their children need more services than social policy planners can readily provide. Public hospitals in California are overtaxed to the point of imploding while new school construction cannot keep pace with the number of new students seeking to enroll in school districts throughout the state. Bilingual education has proven to be a costly waste as the students seldom seem to become proficient in either English or Spanish.
Translators are needed to conduct most routine business in the courtrooms of the state. One criminal defendant complained that he could not receive his day in court without a taxpayer sponsored translator familiar and conversant with the specific dialect spoken in his remote region in Oaxaca, Mexico rather than basic Spanish. The man who had been charged with attempted murder for stabbing another person with a broken beer bottle during a drunken brawl insisted upon a translator who was fluent in “Chuukese.” This is a dialect used by some 7,000 odd people living in an isolated mountain region of Oaxaca.
According to the liberal Los Angeles Times, twenty percent of the residents of Los Angeles County are receiving some form of public assistance. For every four industrious worker bees, there appears to be one lazy drone in the Los Angeles beehive. The ratio seems to be way out of line.
President Obama has the perfect solution: amnesty for one and all! The stimulus bill even promises mortgage foreclosure relief for illegal aliens with real estate difficulties. What a country! Deputy voter registrars will be available to assist all of the new citizens as will representatives from ACORN.
When Ronald W. Reagan was campaigning for president in 1980, he was able to point to his executive experience as the former governor of the Golden State. Had California been a separate country rather than a state at that time, it would have boasted the fifth largest economy in the world. Now, the state is well on its way to becoming a third world basket case. Businesses have been leaving the state in droves. Many residents have fled also, but illegal immigration has kept the population growing.
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, a nominal Republican, may soon find himself to be a man without a party. Having violated his pledge to hold the line on taxes, Schwarzenegger has signed off on a Democratic proposal to fund a budget shortfall by increasing taxes and borrowing against future revenues from lottery ticket sales. Overlooked in all of the budget battles in Sacramento is the obvious fact that the massive hole in the state budget matched the amount of spending increases almost dollar for dollar.
Austerity is a dirty word to politicians. The cost of the new tax proposals to a single parent with two children, without a car and a household income of $15,000.00 will be approximately $500.00 in additional taxes. See, only the rich will be made to pay new taxes.
Illinois may be in dire straits, but California is about to plunge over the cliff and into the abyss. And nobody can call out a warning to hit the brakes without being derided as unsympathetic to the poor and oppressed.
Aren’t the hardworking taxpayers being oppressed too?
Daniel J. Kelley is regular contributor to “The Chicago Daily Observer.”