The Instigator
headphonegut
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
RoyLatham
Pro (for)
Winning
23 Points

resolution: The Border fence is beneficial to America

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
RoyLatham
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/23/2010 Category: Politics
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,784 times Debate No: 12116
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (10)
Votes (4)

 

headphonegut

Con

Hello there Roy and thank you for accepting this debate.
Intro: The border fence in Texas is quite useless.Even with it illegals are still getting into America. Not only is it ineffective in preventing some people (most) from crossing over the cost is insane that Americans have to pay almost 49billion over the next 25 years. So lets count it up. We are fighting two wars. Barack Hussein Obama passed the health reform bill (940 billion over 10 years) and of course the border fence(started by bush). Is truly beneficial?

C1- A country that has wonderful genius. At times. Has no Idea what to do now with illegal immigrants holding steadfast to the idea that the fence will magically stop aliens from coming to America because quite frankly other alternatives are difficult to come up with. The fence does nothing it is merely a minor setback for aliens who cross the fence it costs 1,300 per average repair. It has been breached 3,363 times...so far. Now in what way is the border fence beneficial does it put peoples mind at ease that at least something is being done? or is the border fence a way to discriminate a minority that feeds America?

This is going to be my argument for now pro goes first.

http://articles.sfgate.com...
http://www.cbsnews.com...
http://www.csmonitor.com...
RoyLatham

Pro

1. The United States needs a new comprehensive immigration policy that provides for guest workers, with employers of the workers paying in taxes any costs above what the workers themselves pay. Border security is an essential part of any law providing immigration reform, and a important part of border security is a border fence protecting at least 700 miles of the U.S./Mexican border. Without border security, immigration laws will be ignored. The benefits of the fence include also include minimizing drug and gun smuggling and the potential of terrorist incursions.

2. The costs of illegal immigration into the United States are staggering. A study by the National Research Council put the cost at $349 billion per year. http://www.rense.com... For example, just a small part of the cost is from 300,000 Mexican women crossing the border to give birth, costing American taxpayers $6000 dollars each in hospital expenses. In addition to that $1.8 billion, each child, then an American citizen must be educated through 12 years of schooling at about $9,000 per year. That adds $30 billion to the bill. On the federal level, welfare costs alone exceed taxes paid by $2600 per immigrant, amounting to $40 billion per year. $100 billion in cost is attributed to wages depressed by illegal workers.

Much of the costs are borne by the states, for education, health, and welfare. Six years ago, the cost to California was put at $10.6 billion per year. http://usgovinfo.about.com... In Arizona, illegal immigrants now take $1.6 billion from Arizona's education system, $694.8 million from health care services, $339.7 million in law enforcement and court costs, $85.5 million in welfare costs and $155.4 million in other general costs - total of $2.7 billion. http://www.foxnews.com...

"Analysis of the latest Census data indicates Texas's illegal immigrant population is costing the state's taxpayers more than $4.7 billion per year for education, medical care and incarceration. Even if the estimated tax contributions of illegal immigrant workers are subtracted, net outlays still amount to more than $3.7 billion per year." http://www.fairus.org...

It is not only the border states that have a problem. For example, the cost of illegal immigrants in Maryland is put at $1.3 billion. http://www.prnewswire.com...

According to CNN, illegal Mexican immigrants sent $22B to Mexico in 2008. http://answers.yahoo.com...

The exact costs of illegal immigration are not known. Nonetheless, even the most conservative cost estimates are many tens of billions of dollars each year.

3. Con claims that a border fence might cost $49 billion over 20 years. That estimate is from a partisan group and is four years old. Since then we have actual data on what a large portion of the fence has actually cost. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) says the completed fence will cost $8.9 billion over 20 years http://www.cbsnews.com... That is about $0.44 billion per year, not the $2.5B per year claimed. If the fence stops only a tiny percentage of illegal immigration the cost is justified. Based upon $349 billion total cost, it would be justified if only one illegal in 750 were deterred. Con cites fence repair costs of about $0.015 B, a trivial amount on the scale of immigration costs. Maintenance was included in the GAO estimates.

4. There is no question that a fence deters illegal entry into the US. "Bernacke, the patrol agent, says that since the triple fence was finished in October, there has been a 72 [sic, it's 94] percent decline in illegal migrant apprehensions in the 120-mile swath of the US-Mexican border known as the Yuma sector. Eight hundred people used to be apprehended trying to cross the border here every day. Now, agents catch 50 people or fewer daily." http://www.csmonitor.com...

"Today, Henry is assistant chief of the Border Patrol's San Diego sector. He says apprehensions here are down 95 percent, from 100,000 a year to 5,000 a year, largely because the single strand of cable marking the border was replaced by double — and in some places, triple — fencing." http://www.npr.org... Con's assertion that a fence is "a minor setback" to immigrants is clearly false.

5. Con falsely asserted that a border fence was supposed to "magically stop" illegal immigration. Nonsense. What it is suppose to do is deter a fraction of illegal immigration. The fraction needed to justify it is tiny, but a fence demonstrably deters a great deal more than that minimum.

6. A fence is beneficial and would be fully justified if just to mitigate drug smuggling, arms smuggling, and protection from terrorism. One objective is prevent trucks from being run across the border carrying drugs or, potentially, terrorist weapons of mass destruction.

In 2006, over a half million pounds of drugs and contraband were seized n the Tucson border patrol sector alone, much of it trucked across the border. http://www.newswithviews.com... Last year 1.2 million pounds were seized in the Tucson sector, and this year is on a pace to break that record. http://www.cbp.gov... The Tucson sector is now the most active because it is one of the areas that would benefit from a fence, but still does not have one. Until a vehicle-barrier fence was constructed Organ Pipe National Monument, on the border in eastern Arizona, was a major crossing point. "Trucks, SUVs and other vehicles afford smugglers the easiest way to bring large numbers of immigrants or heavy loads of marijuana from Mexico through vast, remote expanses of sun-baked desert." http://www.nctimes.com...

The San Francisco Examiner reports that terrorists are recognizing the weak border security. "According to authorities global Islamic terrorist have moved into Mexico and other Latin American countries to open the door for Mexican cartels to have excess to Afghanistan opium at bargain basement prices, those profits from those sales are being passed on to Hezbollah and other terrorist organizations worldwide to attack the states from within. Hezbollah is known to be raising money for their cause in the U.S and some Americans say they have brought [suit]case dirty [bombs] into the U.S. and are waiting for further instructions. ... High level Mexican military and government sources revealed that U.S. Special Forces and DEA agents are operating in Mexico." http://www.examiner.com...

Some portion of the US-Mexican border is in terrain too rugged for vehicles to traverse, so vehicle-barrier fences are not need over the entire border.

7. Perfect border security is not possible, just as it is not possible to prevent all bank robberies or homicides. However, making border security as solid as possible minimizes the amount of illegal immigration and smuggling, and as well as the terrorist threat. The cost of circumventing good security is too high or it is too risky for ordinary job-seeking immigrants. That allows border patrol agents to focus on the dangerous threats. Fences work.

The resolution is affirmed.

=======

Con has not linked his references to his claims. Does he expect me to build his case for him based on reading assignments? I refuted the linked data in this round because not much is cited, but it is poor use of references.
Debate Round No. 1
headphonegut

Con

Thank you.
R1- My opponent fails to recognize any alternatives as to the border fence and therefore presumes that the border fence is the best possible solution as to the problems of immigration and drug and gun smuggling. {to which terrorist incursions do you speak of ?}. Funny thing about guns haha. Usually the best are made in the old U.S.A. so the flow of guns is actually going south (just to show you a number of guns it's absurd. http://en.wikipedia.org... http://www.realmilitarynetwork.com... ) So basically America supplies Mexico with guns so they can kill each other hell that's not a bad idea of course they forgot to take the cartels into account. http://www.cbsnews.com...
The drugs are a problem We the people never consented to making cigarettes legal something that kills every 6 seconds is quite something tolerable according to congress, and amazingly America. So in the end are people who do drugs any different than people who smoke there are more smokers than drug users. Furthermore the drugs are being smuggled in because of the incompetence of the fence, to assume that is stops these things is no offense asinine. My opponent said it himself "perfect border security is not possible." Then he makes a cute argument referring to banks and homicides how does that relate to the border? I wonder. Another alternative could be towers with gun mounts and we let no one go into Mexico or come into America, or we can simply electrify the river ad where the river ends the gun mounts begin after all America has no problem using violence. Hell why don't we just go into Mexico with our army and blow them into oblivion or nuke them not the best possible solution but a solution never the less.
R2- I completely agree the fence is not beneficial to us.
R3- thank you for correcting my numbers. "If the fence stops only a tiny percentage of illegal immigration the cost is justified" how about an estimate Roy or is that estimate incalculable? Also explain how it (small or tiny percentage ) justifies spending 349 billion dollars as so claimed by you. Do you expect me to make your arguments for you? I think my nuke Idea is preferable hell it's stop the whole country from even trying to get in because of the gun mounts or turrets that are in place.
R4- I suppose you're right just because you reference a site that says because of this triple fence thing it stops 94 percent of illegal immigrants coming into the U.S. The fence is certainly working however what that site doesn't tell you is the increase in of immigrants coming across the fence. WOW only catching 50? after they've upped security I suppose it's not possible that these aliens won't try to go in from somewhere else oh wait they do aliens are increasingly coming to America by seaaaaaaaaaa! :) http://calcoastnews.com...
Also you forgot to mention how big the yuma sector is, and can you prove that the fence will be just as effective anywhere else as it is in the Yuma sector? you simply cannot generalize that because it's working in one place it's going to work everywhere else. Wow my opponent posted a link disproving me I suppose he want's me to make his argument for him ok I will here goes con is going to debate against links and not me therefore I will post links to support my specific facts then generalize them then fool everyone that I'm debating when actually it's my links that are debating for me.
R5- "con blah blah "magically stop" illegal immigration...suppose to..deter a fraction of illegal immigration...THE FRACTION NEEDED TO JUSTIFY IT IS TINY" lets examine that it is tiny well how tiny roy? how tiny? tiny enough to spend 349 billion on it tiny enough to militarize it? tiny enough to not care what comes into the country? tiny enough to turn the other way and not nuke Mexico? the last one was just for laughs.
R6- mitigate definition from some dictionary lessen or to try to lessen the seriousness or extent of or make less severe or harsh. So we are not actually trying to exhaust it or stop it completely but mitigate it fancy that.
"one objective is to prevent trucks from being run across the border carrying drugs or, potentially, terrorist weapons of mass destruction" wow Roy using the "fear technique really.......really that is just sleazy I find it amazing you didn't use a normal car but you said truck I assume you mean the big rigs Roy the ones that get inspected before crossing the border those "trucks" is it those you're talking about? and again what terrorists' do you so speak of? I assume you mean Mexico's neighbor America's government.
1953 U.S. overthrows minister mossadeq of Iran. and installs shah as dictator
1954 U.S. overthrows democratically-elected president arbenz of Guatemala.200,000 civilians were killed.
1963:U.S backs assassination of south Vietnamese president Diem.
1963-1975: American military kills 4 million people in southeast Asia.
September 11, 1973 U.S. stages coup in Chile. Democratically-elected president Salvador Allende assassinated. Dictator Augusto Pinochet installed. 5,000 Chileans murdered.
1977: U.S. backs military rulers of El Salvador. 70,000 Salvadorans and four American nuns killed.
1980: U.S. trains Osama bin Laden and fellow terrorists to kill Soviets.CIA gives them $3billion.
1981: Reagan administration trains and funds "contras." 30,000 Nicaraguans die.
1982:U.S. provides billions in aid to Saddam Hussein for weapons to kill Iranians
1983: white house secretly gives Iran weapons to kill Iraqis.
1989: CIA agent manuel Noriega (also serving as president of panama) disobeys orders from Washington. U.S. invades Panama and removes Noriega. 3,000 Panamanian civilian casualties.
1990: Iraq invades Kuwait with weapons from U.S.
1991: U.S. enters Iraq. Bush reinstates dictator of Kuwait.
1998: Clinton bombs "weapons factory" in Sudan. Factory turns out to be making aspirin.
1991 to present: American planes bomb Iraq on a weekly
basis. U.N. estimates 500,000 Iraqi children die from bombing and sanctions.
2000-01 U.S. gives Taliban-ruled Afghanistan 245 million in "aid"
Sept.11, 2001 Osama bin laden uses his expert CIA training to murder 3,000 people
R6-continued- 2006 we're referencing old news does that number in any way amount to even half of what wasn't seized since you so lovingly put it "border security is not perfect" so every the number goes up which simply means that there is more than that since we cannot account for all of the drugs coming into America because of the fence that is just a minor set back. Also the people are crossing into America because there is no border or because there is no one to stop them well now there is apparently. Again with the terrorists can you name them these terrorists? LA examiner you apparently read the site wrong did you misquote it as well? So, have these so called terrorists in any way affect us why is it that when supposed terrorists move into terrorize another country they are now threatening us which means again to my earlier alternative for nuking Mexico.
R7- Roy concedes that we simply cannot afford to keep this border operational immigrants coming to America by the thousands stealing our education and money how can we even let them do this we should nuke Mexico that way no one is in danger. We are a gun loving country why not nuke loving as well. Roy also concedes the fence being breached and that the fence only deters us from other matters more important at hand such as the wars and health C.
conclusion: My opponent has faulty arguments make's specific arguments then tries to generalize them to the whole border which is a logical fallacy just F.Y.I. and most of his "arguments are facts" with a link am I suppose to assume what he means? does he expect me to build his case for him based on reading assignments?
http://www.azcentral.com...
RoyLatham

Pro

1. The resolution is that the border fence is beneficial. Whether there might be something more beneficial is irrelevant to the debate.

Guns are smuggled into Mexico. A border fence would certainly reduce that smuggling. That would benefit Mexico, but it also the United States by improving relations with Mexico and by diminishing the power of the drug cartels that are attempting to destroy the Mexican government. If the cartels succeed in taking down the government, our problems would increase as more people attempt to flee into the United States to escape the violence. Evidence presented in the first round shows that there is already a presence of Middle Eastern terrorists in Mexico. Opium from Afghanistan is one of the main sources of terrorist financing, so we would expect increased heroin smuggling as well as incursions for terrorism.

Con again makes the error of arguing that if a complete solution is not possible then there is no point in mitigation. I tried to explain it to him by using the example of bank robbery. Bank vaults do not provide a perfect solution to bank robbery. That does not mean that we should abandon the practice of keeping money in vaults, because it is better to have fewer bank robberies than more. Most problems cannot be completely solved, yet we take whatever steps that make sense to mitigate problems. That include vaccines to prevent most of certain diseases, seat belts and safety rules to reduce auto injuries, and so forth.

Con suggests that a solution to drug smuggling is to legalize drugs. If we legalized marijuana, then the drug cartels would switch to pushing more heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine. Dealers at every level of the distribution chain make their money by pushing whatever is illegal, so they would all move to harder stuff. There are already very large quantities of these drugs smuggled across the border. In 2006, over 6000 pounds of methamphetimines were seized http://www.coha.org... Since then, domestic production of meth has dropped due to controls on the raw materials, so much more is illegally imported. In just one raid in 2009, authorities seized 17 kilos of cocaine and 188 pounds of meth from a Mexican drug cartel. http://www.wsbtv.com...

Anything that has bad effects can be mitigated by declaring the "bad" to be "good." We ought to be government b the laws passed democratically.

2. The National Research Council is the joint research arm of the National Academy of Science and the National Academy of Engineering. As cited, the NRC concludes that illegal immigration costs the US $349 billion per year in welfare costs, education costs, medical costs, crime, and depressed wages. I think Con is confused and thought that $349 billion was the cost of enforcing border security. Why else would he say that I have somehow made his point? Clearly, the $349 billion is the cost of *not* enforcing border security.

3. Con concedes that the border fence cost is $0.44 billion per year, which is to be put up against the uncontested $349 billion yearly cost of having illegal immigration.

4. Arizona has two section of border, of about equal size. The Yuma section has the fence, and illegal captures there have dropped about 94%. The Tucson section, without the fence, had 241,000 illegals captured last year and 1.2 million pounds of contraband seized. Until the fence was constructed the bulk of illegal activity was in the Yuma section. As described in the references, the "fence" is actually two substantial fences separated by a road. The road is patrolled by Border Security. It is not the case that someone can just cut a hole in chain link and crawl through. Vehicle fences are concrete pillars or steel structures like World War II tank barriers.

Con pointed to increased illegal entry by sea, although the numbers are extremely small -- 480 in a year. Why have not illegals always come by sea in large numbers? Because it is difficult and expensive, and the risk is high. Boats are fairly easy to detect. A few can masquerade as fishing boats, but not many. Job-seeking immigrants do not have huge budgets and while the immigrants take the risk of being sent home, the coyotes that run them do not want to be locked away.

There are many expensive and risky methods that are alternatives to crossing the border directly, but being expensive and risky are what discourages their use. The net effect is that total illegal activity drops. Total illegal immigration has dropped, partly due to the incomplete border fence and partly due to the economy. http://www.foxnews.com... Completing the border fence would bring substantial reductions, because alternatives are expensive and risky.

5. I am talking about driving trucks across the unfenced border, not trucks at policed checkpoints. That was made clear. In Texas, drug runners actually poured concrete and ran 18-wheelers across the border, but generally the problem is box trucks or SUVs packed with illegal immigrants or contraband. A major crossing point was in the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument in the Yuma section, as previously referenced. Roads lead to the border from Mexico and it is often only a short distance to road on the US side. Unless there is a fence at the border, running across the border is a high volume operation.

Con claims that it is not legitimate to cite terrorism as a reason for protecting the border. We spend large sums inspecting cargo at ports and border crossings and screening airline passengers. It is perfectly legitimate to do that for fear of terrorist activity. Building fences to stop vehicles from crossing uninspected is a relatively inexpensive way to prevent terrorist incursions. I cited evidence that terrorists already have links to the drug cartels, and that the DEA and FBI are currently worried about the potential. Con should read my R1 for the specifics of who is involved.

I have no idea what point Con was trying to make with his fanciful history of US efforts to stop terrorism. Does he really believe hat the US expelled Saddam from Kuwait in order to reinstate the dictator of Kuwait? Does he believe that Osama bin Laden was trained by the CIA to carry out 9/11? Searching for a grain of truth, it is a true that in war "the enemy of your enemy is your friend," so as we backed Stalin against Hitler, we backed the Taliban against the Russians, and so forth. That is one of the unpleasantries of waging war.

6. Con's questions were answered in R1.

7. I cannot understand Con's argument. He says, "Roy concedes that we simply cannot afford to keep this border operational immigrants coming to America by the thousands stealing our education and money how can we even let them do this we should nuke Mexico that way no one is in danger. We are a gun loving country why not nuke loving as well." The best I can make of it is that Con is suggesting we should either have no border security or we should retaliate with nuclear weapons. Obviously overreacting is not the alternative to doing nothing.

Building a fence is shown to reduce illegal contraband and immigration by at 95%, so that border security personnel can then focus on the 5% that the fence doesn't deter. Once the flood of illegal immigration is reduced to a trickle, we can get on with setting up guest worker programs and rationalizing the whole immigration situation. Comprehensive immigration reform was enacted under Reagan, with amnesty granted under the promise that border security would be established. That failed because border security was never imposed. The America people now insist on border security first. We also need a fence to stop trucks laden with contraband and, potentially, terrorist WMDs, across the border. A fence is reasonable part of border security.
Debate Round No. 2
headphonegut

Con

headphonegut forfeited this round.
RoyLatham

Pro

After challenging me to four round debate, my opponent has forfeited in the third round. I am left guessing at what points my opponent was trying to make.

When we are discussing whether the border fence is beneficial, it is somewhat unclear as to whether we are talking about the fence as it exists, as planned, or as it might reasonably be completed. To be generous, the Obama Administration places a very low priority on border security of any kind.

"The Obama administration asked Congress for $779 million for the fiscal year beginning Oct. 1 for border security-related expenses such as installation of technology, tactical infrastructure and completion of some of the remaining 46 miles of barriers already planned. ... That represents a sharp drop from the $1.9 billion spent on the same activities by the Bush administration in fiscal 2008 and the $926 million set aside by the outgoing administration for the current fiscal year." http://www.dallasnews.com...

Currently, 680 miles of the 1951 mile border is fenced, but the fence now has gaps. The gaps are in the more remote areas, so that the completed sections still provide a deterrent. Originally, the plan was to use a "virtual fence" to fill the gaps, but the expensive virtual fence was a failure and President Obama canceled it in March of this year, instead doing nothing.

The type of fence matters a great deal, and the Administration has been accused of downgrading planned effective double fencing to much less secure single fencing. According to Homeland Security data "only 34.3 miles of double-layer fencing has been built to date – 11.8 miles in California, 9.1 miles in Arizona, and 13.4 miles in Texas." http://www.sodahead.com...

Low single-fencing borders rancher John Ladd's property in Douglas AZ. 500,000 illegals have been captured on his land since 1999. Estimates are that only one in four is captured. http://thewaytheballbounces.blogspot.com... Ladd was interviewed on TV.

"JENKINS: And you have seen not just Mexican crossers, you've seen other nationalities.

LADD: You bet. I've seen Russian, Polish, Chinese, Iraqi, Pakistani, Romanian, Brazilians, Guatemalans."

A video http://video.foxnews.com... of he interview also shows how trivial it is to climb over the fence, even without a ladder. I challenge Con to explain why a U.S. citizen should be require to endure two million illegal trespassers on his property when effective fencing could virtually eliminate the problem.

Statistics show that a border fence reduces illegal alien influx by about 95%, with high-security double fencing even more effective. Currently, gaps in the fence and much low-security fencing reduce the effectiveness, just as the Obama Administration has apparently intended.

The resolution for this debate is "The border fence is beneficial to America." Clearly it is beneficial because it discourages illegal immigration by making the border crossing more difficult, and vehicle barrier fences stop truckloads of illegals and contraband from simple being driven across the border illegally on unprotected border. Illegal immigration costs the U.S. $349 billion at a time when we can ill-afford it. The border fence would be more effective if the gaps were closed and double fencing were uniformly employed so as to make a true and complete border fence.

The resolution is affirmed.
Debate Round No. 3
headphonegut

Con

headphonegut forfeited this round.
RoyLatham

Pro

My opponent has again forfeited, leaving all my arguments unanswered. During the debate his few references were not tied to his arguments and not relevant to the central issue of whether the border fence was beneficial. We are not debating what border security policy is optimum, but only whether a fence is beneficial. The fence is beneficial because it reduces illegal immigration and drug smuggling, and at minimum it redirects illegal activities away from populated areas.

The resolution is affirmed.
Debate Round No. 4
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by CyanideLover 6 years ago
CyanideLover
OK - I was under the impression that the 95% fence effectiveness (virtually eliminating the problem of illegal immigration across the US/Mexico border) was meant in a broad context and not specific to the rancher.
Posted by RoyLatham 6 years ago
RoyLatham
Cyanide, I never said or implied that a fence would virtually eliminate the problem of illegal immigration. You might want to actually read the debate.

The fence would virtually eliminate the rancher's problem. You agreed to that. The gaps in the fence are in uninhabited desert areas, so it would redirect the flood into unpopulated areas. It's a separate issue, but I claim that fewer people are willing to hike through 50 miles of Sonoran desert than go a short distance through someone's ranch to the road. Hence overall immigration is reduced, but not eliminated.
Posted by Procrastarian 6 years ago
Procrastarian
This debate is as one-sided as a möbius strip.
Posted by CyanideLover 6 years ago
CyanideLover
There's no question that borders and fences are effective at stopping trespassing. That is not the issue. As I've repeatedly stated, I'm contesting your claim that such a Mexico/US fence will "virtually eliminate the problem" of illegal immigration. Specifically, I'm contesting your claim that a fence will cause illegal trespassing to drop by 95% (without gross human rights violations). There's simplify not enough evidence that a US/Mexico border fence would work so well.
Posted by RoyLatham 6 years ago
RoyLatham
The question has bearing on whether citizens have a reasonable expectation to be protected from illegal foreign trespass. If citizens have no right to protection, then government need do nothing to protect them. If citizens do have a right, then government should protect them. That's pretty simple, so you have no grounds for ducking the question. I don't see how you can defend having two million aliens going through yor property, breaking into your home, and killing your neighbor. You should explain why government shouldn't stop it.

The proof that a fence is effective is not that a border official said it, it is the data from both San Deigo and the Yuma section of Arizona. Moreover, it is logical that the more difficult it is to cross the border, the fewer people will do it. This is not hard to understand. Why do we bother asking for passports at airports and border checkpoints? Obviously it doesn't guarantee 100% security, it only improves security. We ask for passports to make illegal entry more difficult. That's the fence principle.

You seemed to imply that border security accomplished nothing, not even in East Germany. Even modest border security works, and when you get to the extremes of East German and North Korea, it is extremely effective. We don't have to militarize the border to get to high effectiveness. We are currently, for political reasons, doing very little. Just spend $5 billion rather than $1 billion on fences and patrols.
Posted by CyanideLover 6 years ago
CyanideLover
The questions you pose have no bearing on your presumed 95% effectiveness of border fencing (which is the only thing that I contest). In fact, it seems your only source for this number is an assistant chief of the Border Patrol's San Diego sector. How do we know that these trespassers didn't simply drive around the fence?

Earlier you criticized my comparison of Berlin Wall to the US/Mexico border because "that is quite different from East Germany, where people were highly motivated to seek freedom and had reasonable resources to spend pursuing their goal." Yet now you're making a comparison between US/Mexico and the quasi-religious personality cult that is North Korea. These are clearly different.
Posted by RoyLatham 6 years ago
RoyLatham
You avoided answering my question: would you be wiillng to have two million trespassers cross your property, break into your house seven times and kill your neighbor on the grounds that a fence would not be 100% effective in controlling the border? Don't avoid the question, it is a perfectly reasonable one. Do citizens have a right to be protected?

The fence is 95% effective where it is built. For example, in San Diego people would just walk across the boarder every morning, work in San Diego, and then return in the evening. The fence stopped that. Now the gaps in the fence are in remote areas, not close to roads. So it deters the people who cannot afford the coyote fees or who are unwilling to negotiate the rough terrain.

Please go ahead and tell me about how North Koreans are not even slightly deterred by border security, and how if East Germany had no border guards only a few more than 5000 would have left. The U.S. could have secure borders if the political will were there. The budget for border security has been cut to under $1 billion, a trivial sum compared to the huge sums spent on worthless government projects, like the tens of billion spent on bailing out auto unions that drove their companies into bankruptcy. Politicians figure that they can win the Latino vote by not securing the borders, and that is all there is to it.

Illegal workers often use all zeroes as a Social Security number, so there s no mystery as to who is employing them. Near the end of his term, Bush started cracking down on the employers. Obama immediately put a stop to the crackdown. It's politics, not practicality.
Posted by CyanideLover 6 years ago
CyanideLover
Although I did not read the reference, I don't see how the 95% rate of effectiveness could possibly be accurate given that the fence does not cover the entire border. Obviously, as soon as potential trespassers see the fence, they will try to go around it. Just like the Mongols did to bypass the Great Wall of China.

It's like trying to fix a cracked pipe with duck tape – but only place the tape on few scattered locations along the crack. Obviously, in those few places, leak blockage might be 95% effective – but that is inaccurate because the water will go around the tape. The only way to tell for sure is to tape the entire crack. Then, the 95% leak blockage will drop drastically – as would likely be the case for a complete US/Mexico fence.

As far as your claim that East Germans have more "resources to spend pursuing their goal" or different motivations for trespassing than Mexicans. Even if it was the case (which I doubt), the strategy for crossing the Berlin Wall was essentially the same as for crossing US/Mexican border: networking, secrecy, and simply outrunning the authorities. The Berlin Wall did not "virtually eliminate the problem" of trespassing and neither would a US/Mexican border fence.
Posted by RoyLatham 6 years ago
RoyLatham
A fence would virtually eliminate the problem for that particular rancher, which is all I claimed. Are you telling me that if two million trespassers went through your property, breaking into your home seven times and killing your neighbor, you would be satisfied with the argument that since it wouldn't be 100% effective in solving the whole problem, you think nothing should be done? That's total nonsense. The data suggests that 95% of illegal immigration from Mexico would be prevented. We would still have drug dealers and terrorists to cope with, but the Border Patrol would not be overwhelmed with ordinary illegals.

Most illegals coming from Mexico are looking for economic opportunity. Hence, many will be discouraged if crossing the border illegal is made to difficult or expensive. That is quite different from East Germany, where people were highly motivated to seek freedom and had reasonable resources to spend pursuing their goal.
Posted by CyanideLover 6 years ago
CyanideLover
"I challenge Con to explain why a U.S. citizen should be require to endure two million illegal trespassers on his property when effective fencing could virtually eliminate the problem."

Fencing may very well decrease illegal trespassing, but to say it will "virtually eliminate the problem" is an unjustified exaggeration. An extreme example of border fencing was implemented by the soviets to separate Berlin during the cold war. The Berlin Wall was only 87 miles long - a small fraction of the US/Mexico border and the infamous "death strip" of the Berlin Wall consisted of several walls, fences, and a trespasser-shot-on-sight policy. Yet, still at least 5,000 people made it across. Why would the US/Mexico fence be any different?
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Vote Placed by ProHobo 6 years ago
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