David North's blog

Capitol Footnotes: The Gang of Three, Diversity Lottery, and the Hastert Rule

By David North, April 12, 2013

Watching the on-going legislative scramble over "comprehensive immigration reform" I am reminded of:

IRCA's Gang of Three. Currently there are Gangs of Eight in both the Senate and the House trying to resolve the inevitable immigration policy conflicts by quiet negotiation among these self-selected, bipartisan groupings. Too many commentators regard these (conspiratorial?) gatherings as signs of progress. I beg to differ. Read more...

The Year's H-1B Slots Are Filled in Less than a Week: Thoughts Thereon

By David North, April 9, 2013

The year's supply of H-1B visas for inexpensive high-tech workers was exhausted the first week that the window was opened — to no one's surprise. Every year the visas become available to employers on April 1 — 65,000 in the general category and 20,000 in the advanced-degree-in-the-U.S. category.

Bargain-hunting employers, particularly the Indian body shops (i.e. placement agencies), poured in their applications, hoping to obtain nearly indentured college graduates on the cheap, most of whom will be assigned to routine technological jobs. Read more...

The Alien's Guide to Buying an American Visa: Three Pathways Available

By David North, April 8, 2013

Many people think that the only way to buy your way into legal presence in the United States is through the EB-5 (immigrant investor) program. Not so.

There are three different ways that an alien can buy his or her way into legal status; each pathway has a different price, sometimes involving more than just money; and each pathway has its own advantages and disadvantages. Here is a summary, more or less in the style of Consumer Reports, for the three routes to buy legal status: Read more...

Another Perspective on a Major EB-5 Scandal, the One in Chicago

By David North, April 2, 2013

My immediate reaction in a blog about the EB-5 scandal in Chicago, involving investments of $145 million last month was off the mark.

Being all too accustomed to writing about fraudulent practices by promoters of this program, I was a bit blase about the news and emphasized the fact that the Securities and Exchange Commission had taken the lead in breaking this case, not USCIS. The court filings dealt with getting money under false pretenses, not with the multiple violations of the immigration law and regulations that also had occurred.

What I did not realize at the time was that this really was a very big deal, nationally and internationally. Read more...

More on Fighting Immigration-Related Marriage Fraud

By David North, April 1, 2013

There are two kinds of immigration-related marriage fraud, and one is much more difficult for the authorities to detect than the other.

In one scenario the alien sweet-talks the citizen into a real marriage, keeps the marriage alive for the needed two years after which the green card can be secured, and later breaks off the marriage and seeks a divorce. Let's call these the con cases.

In the other the alien (or his or her agent) simply pays a citizen to go through a sham marriage. These are the cash cases. Read more...

Let's Get Our Terms Right: The More-Migration People Are Pushers

By David North, March 28, 2013

The terminology of the immigration policy debate is all wrong.

Those wanting to expand migration portray themselves in glowing colors as "reformers", out to fix a "broken system", who want to "liberate" the economy and shed inhibiting practices and laws. Even an "open borders" policy sounds more attractive than a "restrictive" one.

And since, by and large, the writers and editors in the mainstream media are in cahoots with the mas-migration people, these misleading terms are widely used in reporting immigration policy.

I propose a new term for those who want to massively increase migration: pushers. Read more...

The Real — and Unrealistic — Forces Behind "Immigration Reform"

By David North, March 26, 2013

The great immigration writer John Higham famously wrote long ago that the country-of-origin immigration quota system, adopted during the Harding administration, was the "triumph of bigotry over greed". Corporate greed for low-paid workers was trumped, in his eyes by the forces of nativism.

Things are a little more complex today, but if "comprehensive immigration reform" is enacted in the near future it will be because of the combined forces of: Read more...

Selective Truth-Telling at the New York Times

By David North, March 25, 2013

Here's an example of selective truth-telling, from a story in Saturday's New York Times titled "Finding a Path to a U.S. Visa, Often by Luck":

[S]ome opponents of more lenient [amnesty] policies have contended that the deferred action and other immigration programs might tempt some illegal immigrants to commit fraud in order to qualify. [Emphasis added.]

Selective Truth-Telling in this Morning's Washington Post

By David North, March 22, 2013

Yes, it is true, if you look hard enough there will be a saint or two in the federal prison system. I suspect there will also be a Harvard Law graduate or two. But no news article on the prison population would dream of selecting the imprisoned Harvard grad as the poster child for the population of those jails.

An article in this morning's Washington Post, on the other hand, headlined "Betting the farm — for green cards", picks a highly atypical family that benefits from the immigrant investor (EB-5) program as its poster children. Read more...

Gee, the White Horse is Bigger than the Black Horse

By David North, March 22, 2013

There is a long, painful story in the March 22 New York Times, "Officials Still Seek Ways to Assess Border Security", about how to measure the effectiveness of immigration control, with the notion being that there is a political need to have some indication that we have illegal immigration in hand prior to any amnesty. Read more...

Provisions for Sibling Immigrants in English-Speaking Nations

By David North, March 19, 2013

The United States is very much alone in granting immigration visas to siblings of citizens, as this table shows: Read more...

More Birth-Tourism Births Than Indigenous Births in CNMI

By David North, March 15, 2013

There were more births to Chinese tourists in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands last year than there were to the indigenous population, the Marianas Variety is reporting in its March 14 edition. Read more...

We Should Remember the Bracero Program ... and Shudder

By David North, March 12, 2013

Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO, was recently quoted in an ABC News story about the dangers of nonimmigrant worker schemes:

"Programs like the bracero program or temporary guest-worker programs where individuals were tied to an employer, they got exploited", he said. "They got cheated out of wages [and] they weren't given what was rightfully due to them. They were forced to work under unsafe conditions. They were forced to accept substandard wages. They couldn't say anything, because if they did, [the employer] would jerk their permit and deport them."

EB-5 Investors Can Use IOU to Gain Residency

By David North, March 8, 2013

It is now apparent that an immigrant investor in the EB-5 program can secure at least some immigration benefits without actually investing any money. Read more...

The Negative Hat Tricks of the Immigration Business

By David North, March 8, 2013

Within our immigration system there are three negatives to avoid:

  1. Bad public policy;
  2. Fraud against the United States and its citizens; and
  3. Fraud against individual aliens.

One often encounters a single negative, such as someone seeking to enter the United States with bad documents; he would be in Class B. Read more...

State Dept. Takes Small Step in the Right Direction on J-1 Sponsor Fees

By David North, March 7, 2013

When the government decides not to spend the needed amount of tax moneys on immigration enforcement, it can always argue that it is helping to reduce the national debt.

When the same government, presumably only lightly motivated to regulate migration, decides not to charge adequate fees for enforcement activities to immigration-related entities profiting by lax regulation, it has no such defense. There is no public sector savings, all the savings go to the private entities that use the program. Read more...

'Tis Ever Thus: Creative Criminals and Catch-Up Cops, Now in Marriage Fraud

By David North, March 6, 2013

The phone call yesterday afternoon from CBS News puzzled me; the reporter wanted to know the extent to which proxy marriages played a role in immigration-related marriage fraud.

"It is certainly possible, but I have no specifics for you", I told the reporter, and wondered why the question was being asked. Read more...

Indian Body Shop Indicted for Abuse of H-1B Program

By David North, March 5, 2013

An H-1B placement operation in Texas has been charged with mistreating its workers, misleading the U.S. government, and engaging in both visa fraud and wire fraud.

Earlier this month, Dibon Solutions of Carrollton, Texas, and six of its current or former executives were hauled into federal court in Dallas to face these counts. The principal defendants are Atula and Jiten "Jay" Nanda, two feuding brothers who had at one point owned the company jointly. (They are currently engaged in a separate court battle with each other over the control of the firm.) Read more...

Murder Linked to Immigration Marriage Fraud, Case Number Five

By David North, February 28, 2013

Immigration marriage fraud, often taken all too lightly by the press, has yet again been linked with murder.

This is the fifth time we have seen this linkage in the last couple of years, with previous cases noted in an earlier blog. Read more...

Blurred Message from DHS about the Sequester-Related Release of Illegals

By David North, February 26, 2013

Earlier today the Associated Press ran an article saying that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) had started releasing "several hundred" illegal aliens held in DHS detention facilities because of the impending sequestration of federal funds.

This was an odd move — presumably designed to scare the Congress into resolving the sequestration crisis. Read more...

A Little Perspective, Please! ICE Operation is 99.92 Percent Accurate

By David North, February 26, 2013

Suppose there's a law-enforcement operation that works 99.92 percent of the time, and when it does not work, it is a short-term inconvenience for criminals.

That's pretty commendable, right?

Unfortunately the Los Angeles Times does not see it that way Read more...

"Binational Dialogue on Mexican Migrants" Likely to be Abused

By David North, February 26, 2013

People in the immigration field are well aware that visa abusers present an enormous challenge.

The release of "Binational Dialogue on Mexican Migrants" at a briefing on Capitol Hill today reminds me of the problems created by "study abusers" who will surely twist this report to advance the interests of the mas migration forces. Read more...

There Must Be a Blue Moon Shining – DOJ Unit Actually Helps Citizens!

By David North, February 25, 2013

A small bit of the Justice Department — the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) — has, totally out of character, actually moved to discourage employment bias against U.S. citizens!

This entity usually spends its energies beating up on employers who are a little too vigorous in their efforts not to hire illegal aliens, but this time it has issued a press release saying it found a Florida employment agency that had violated the law: Read more...

Judge Tells DHS to Stop Shooting Itself in the Foot

By David North, February 20, 2013

This one is a little convoluted.

The government wants some detained aliens, under some conditions, to be released on bond while their status is being sorted out.

With that in mind, the government has licensed certain bail-bond insurance companies to do this work. Read more...

ICE Admits It Missed Yet Another Tunnel at Nogales

By David North, February 19, 2013

The headline on the ICE press release is more positive, if less telling, than the one above; it reads "Nogales Tunnel Task Force Shuts Down Cross-border Tunnel".

It is another account of how Mexican drug traffickers, using patience and medieval skills, have managed to dig yet another tunnel under the border, a tunnel that our enforcement people noticed only when large bundles of marijuana started showing up on our side of the line. Read more...

Immigration Fraud Case Busted by SEC, Not DHS

By David North, February 18, 2013

You might think if 261 would-be EB-5 immigrant investors – all rich residents of China – were caught up in an immigration fraud case that: 1) the Department of Homeland Security would bring the case, and 2) there would be a demand for criminal convictions.

You would be wrong on both counts. Read more...

Emotional Pleas Overshadow Rational Arguments at Senate Hearing

By David North, February 14, 2013

"What do you want to do with me?" asked confessed illegal alien Jose Antonio Vargas in the most striking (and most egocentric) line at yesterday's immigration hearing of the Senate's Judiciary Committee.

Vargas' testimony, and the hearts-and-flowers reaction of most of the Democratic senators to it, dominated the mood of the pre-Valentine's Day session and all-too-accurately reflected the approach of most of the senators to the complex immigration issues before the committee. Read more...

Washington Primer: How to Stage-Manage a Congressional Hearing

By David North, February 12, 2013

Wednesday's Senate hearing on immigration policy is a perfect example of how to stage-manage a congressional hearing to secure the maximum advantage for the policies favored by the committee's majority.

The hearing will be before the Senate's full Judiciary Committee and the list of prospective witnesses alone promises it to be a media victory for those advocating a massive amnesty of illegal aliens.

As a sometime witness myself at such hearings, and as a frequent observer of others, let me tick off the ways that a talented committee chair can rig a hearing: Read more...

How Dante Would View Illegals and Income Tax Violators

By David North, February 12, 2013

Even the advocates of a massive amnesty admit that millions of illegal aliens are also income tax violators. They routinely argue that legalizing them would produce millions of additional tax payers in the future.

If we have an amnesty, which I think is a bad idea, I would prefer that only aliens with clean tax-paying (as well as criminal) records should be considered for legalization. Read more...

The Old Spanish Empire Haunts Our Immigration Debates

By David North, February 11, 2013

Our immigration policy debate would be pretty muted if there were not so many Hispanics fleeing to the United States from Hispanic-run societies. Read more...