Bil Browning

Ill-Legal Workers Commercial

Filed By Bil Browning | September 08, 2011 8:00 AM | comments

Filed in: Politics
Tags: Californians for Population Stabilization, Ill-Legal workers, illegal immigration, legal immigration

Here in DC this commercial ran a few times during the MSNBC Republican presidential candidate debate. Did it run in your area of the country too? After it aired Jerame just looked at me with his jaw on the floor.

I've only two things to say about this shitty anti-immigrant ad: 1) "Fuck you." and 2) "Fuck you very much, you simplistic xenophobic racist prick."

You know what doesn't surprise me? White guy as the spokesperson.

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Laurie Edwards | September 8, 2011 8:32 AM

Sweet Mother of God...May as well just drown Lady Liberty in New York Harbor. How on Earth did we ever get to a point where even legal immigration upsets these loons? It's like the Nativists and Know Nothings from 150 years ago are back--and they've got mass media!

Rick Perry's Pastor friends want Lady Liberty destroyed, since she is the representation of the Goddess...

Wow! I see the fear mongers are working hard in California. If they think reducing or eliminating workers, legal or not, will solve their problems they have a lot to learn.

Still it does show more education on the issue needs to be done. People need to know why things are the way they are and what is really the issues.

I saw that disgusting advertisement for xenophobia right here in Indianapolis on MSNBC. My grandpa Allen was active in the Hoosier KKK back in the 1920s -- he feared all those CATHOLIC immigrants overwhelming the USA taking over our jobs and bringing CANON LAW FROM ROME into the Legislature...

I'm guessing the guy in the ad is an actor simply trying to make the rent and car payment. Rather than inflaming your own anger, why not respond to the ad. What has the ad claimed that is untrue? People immigrate to the U.S. largely for economic reasons. It stands to reason that jobs taken by new immigrants are unavailable to those persons already here (native born and immigrant).

In a time of employment insecurity, what is the counter-argument to rethinking immigration numbers?

The people for Californians for Population Stabilization, probably do not have to work to make the rent and car payments, and whether or not the actor has to is irrelevant.

The ad also does not make any claims outside of generalities (Californians out of work), it simply states opinions with almost nothing to back them up. What's the point of even refuting that kind of fluff? Give me actual hard data on how limiting legal immigration will create jobs for Americans and then I will listen.

It isn't a matter of hard data to convince you, the ad wasn't targeting you. I submit that the ad was probably effective for the group it was meant to target - namely voters with employment insecurities looking for someone to blame. It works because it isn't bogged down with data. It tells a story. What is the competing narrative? This issue depends on emotions more than data. People are nervous and looking for a story that makes them feel better. What is that story?

The counter-narrative is this:

We are a nation of immigrants - the Great American Melting Pot, if you will - and our country was, is and always will be built on the power of bringing together people from all cultures and walks of life to create something bigger than the sum of its parts.

Immigrants have brought us the talent, treasure and sacrifice that have made this the most prosperous and most powerful country in the world. If we turn our back on that, we are denying what makes us America.

And the visuals in an ad with this general message would include well-known immigrants and their contributions to America. A whole campaign could be built around highlighting some specific stories of immigrants who've overcome significant odds to do amazing things that have affected many lives.

I could probably come up with a number of other counter narratives, given more than 15 minutes to think about it, but I think this is a good start.

Thanks Jerame, your counter-narrative is exactly the kind of thing I was talking about. It speaks on a personal level without being heavy on inside the beltway policy speak.

Britney Austin | September 8, 2011 7:21 PM

I happen to agree with the commercial. It is time the United States government puts citizens first and non-citizens second. Do not take that to mean that non-citizens should be mistreated or denied basic human rights. The point is that a citizen of a country has certain rights whereas a non-citizen has certain privileges that can be revoked at anytime. Nobody has a right to enter the United States. It is a privilege.

You want to fix the American economy? Then focus on America and its citizens. Get Americans working. Get American companies producing products in America and hiring American citizens. Stop importing goods from other countries that can be made by Americans in this country by American corporations. Stop giving tax dollars to foreign nations. This country needs to start focusing on taking care of its citizens and stop coddling the rest of the world.

Any of you that agree with the commercial and accept the premise that immigrants, of any kind, are responsible for the economic problems are biting hook line and sinker into yet another distraction technique.

Stop falling for it.

The issue is simple. Corporations for the last 30 years have systematically deregulated, detaxed and deunionized themselves via their political influence. This has led to a directly correlative decimation of the middle class.

Every time we take our focus off of the real culprit - huge corporations and their lobbyists we are losing yet again in this battle. Stop allowing the shift of blame to continue.

Does this mean you're going to use your account to post a piece, Bo? This is more your area of expertise than mine. Lay it all out for everyone in a full post.

I see two problems with the commercial:
1- it doesn't seem to distinguish very clearly between present legal workers, and possible future legal workers. Present legal workers have every right to be there and should not be branded as responsible for job losses. However, I think the question of whether people want more legal workers is legitimate.

2- also, I agree with Bo Shuff that greedy deregulation of economy is to blame and the ad leaves that out. I wouldn't however have a problem with saying that those corporations use foreign workers as cheap non-demanding working force, and everybody looses for that.

Other than that, what is the problem with the message that it is better to limit legal immigration? Well, if in California immigration is actually not so big and has no effects on jobs, then the problem is that the ad is lying, of course. But is it? Or is Bill's offense not because of the content of the ad itself, but because of automatic associations, like anti-immigration equals racism, etc? Those automatic associations prevent honest discussions.

I am against more immigration in countries where I think immigration reached an unsustainable value, and I am in favor or neutral in other countries (for instance, in my own country). I don't consider myself racist. I know I was lucky to be born where I was born, and I feel that unless I help other people in other continents, karma will get me next life. I see my location here in a good place as purely random and temporary. However, if to prevent others from sinking is good, to sink with them is bad for everybody. So people should discuss honestly and without automatic associations this question of sustainability.

Having said this, perhaps the man in the ad was a liar and an idiot because in California there is no such problem. I shouldn't talk about things I don't know.

(I am going on vacations now for some days. If somebody insults me and I don't answer that is the reason. I actually think comments here are not so bad, and I have changed my mind in one or two topics by reading them.)

Politicians have always find it easier to make it an us vs. them campaign for anything they want. Have any of you heard a campaign with an us AND them spin? And it isn't politicians, it is almost all political elements.
When I see, hear, read about campaigns like this I remember a poem from high school.
He drew a circle to shut us out.
Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout.
But Love and I had the wit to win.
We drew a circle that took him in.