As the US was on this artificial economic high, on January 16, 1998, following perceived Iraqi unwillingness to co-operate with UN weapons inspections, members of the Project for the New American Century (PNAC - the NeoCons), including Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, and Dick Cheney drafted an open letter to President Bill Clinton urging him to remove Saddam Hussein from power using U.S. diplomatic, political, and military power.
PNACs statement of Principles included: The American peace has proven itself peaceful, stable, and durable. It has, over the past decade, provided the geopolitical framework for widespread economic growth and the spread of American principles of liberty and democracy. Yet no moment in international politics can be frozen in time; even a global Pax Americana will not preserve itself. What we require is a military that is strong and ready to meet both present and future challenges; a foreign policy that boldly and purposefully promotes American principles abroad; and national leadership that accepts the United States’ global responsibilities.
After September 11, 2001, after the terrorists attacked, PNAC was primed and ready to move forward with their plans for War. By 2003, the country went along with their plans for War in Iraq. The war was financed through foreign debt.
After four years, America's cost for the war in Iraq reached $500 billion, more than the total for the Korean War and nearly as much as 12 years in Vietnam, adjusting for inflation. The ultimate cost could reach $1 trillion or more.
Meanwhile, America was feeling the impact of NAFTA. Manufacturing jobs in the US shrunk from 27% of total jobs to just 12%. Americans were being convinced, however, outsourcing these jobs did not impact them negatively. Instead new jobs were created including stock and financial speculation, house and condo flipping, all financed through foreign debt.
The US, which was once the largest creditor nation became the world’s largest debtor, increasingly dependent on eastern Asian nations such as China, Japan, and South Korea to meet its monthly interest payments.
In order to create the illusion of economic growth and to continue attracting enough foreign capital to meet the US’s interest payments on its debt, the US needed a method to expand their labor force. This method had to push wages down while increasing corporate profits up. Since Americans had a birth rate that barely replaced its death rate, growth in the labor force became dependent on a de facto open unskilled labor market policy. Why unskilled? As Bernanke has stated , “Higher incomes also tend to increase the demand for medical services so that, indirectly, higher incomes may also increase federal health expenditures.” So how can corporations expand while not increasing wages or granting basic health services to workers? Through non-English-speaking, easily exploitable, foreign, preferably semi-literate, deportable workers!
As Americans awakened to their massive debt, loss of manufacturing jobs and rise in the rate of illegal immigrants, their first reaction was anger. Various groups Framed these issues to their own agendas:
ANTI: Promote Enforcement of existing Immigration Laws while Mass Deporting 12M. Use terms such as Mexifornia, 3rd World Country to instill fear and anger in the masses, gaining more members for their cause. Encourage Workplace Raids, Operation Wet back, Racial Profiling while building more Detention Centers and Private Security firms patrolling urban areas and borders. Demonize any Humanitarian Groups with Hispanic terms like “La Raza” in their title to scare the American Public into believing some fake Reconquista theories. Increase membership into their groups (initially started in the 70´s) by instilling fear in the masses. Their message: "Fear and Loathing of Illegal Immigrants." Maximize effectiveness via the internet. Utilize Politically Correct terms to sell message. Utilize form faxes to deluge Congress and the Media. Hire DC Consulting firms with connections to Right Wing Pundits and Shock Jocks.
PRO: React to deplorable Detention Centers and Workplace Raids. React to Hostile Environment and terms such as Mexifornia, 3rd World Country or misrepresentations of various Humanitarian Groups. React to misrepresentation of marches or flags. Struggle to understand the true issues. Communicate the true issues via the internet. Gain alliances across the Nation. Form Groups. Follow the communications path similar to the ANTI communication path in gaining momentum for their cause realizing they are years behind the ANTIs in their mission. Vote in 2008.
Big Business, Administration: Maintain Status Quo or push for non passable Immigration Resolutions. Pass Resolutions but find ways not to implement solutions in order to temporarily appease the masses, yet maintain status quo. Reap as many gains possible through crony built prisons, detaining entire families since cost per head/per day maximizes profits. Continue instilling fear in the American Public so they will be easy to control and manipulate. Encourage passage of bills promoting crony owned Border Security and non-manned aircraft surveillance across all urban areas and borders.
None of the above Framing addresses the True Issues.
The real problem with the current situation runs broader and deeper than Immigration. Consider the issue of Foreign Policy Reform, which focuses on two sub-issues:
1. How has US foreign policy placed, or kept, in power oppressive governments which people are forced to flee?'
2. What role have international trade agreements had in creating or exacerbating people's urge to flee their homelands? If capital is going to freely cross borders, should people and labor be able to do so as well, going where globalization takes the jobs?
If the issue was presented in this way, solutions could be established for the overall problems. The solutions would lead to a solution involving the Secretary of State, conversations with Mexico and other Central American countries, and a close examination of the promises of NAFTA, CAFTA, the WTO, the IMF and the World Bank to raise standards of living around the globe. It would inject into the globalization debate a concern for the migration and displacement of people, not simply globalization's promise for profits. This is not addressed when the issue is defined as the “immigration problem.” Bush's “comprehensive solution” does not address any of these concerns. The immigration problem, in this light, is actually a Global Economy problem.