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Support for a "wall" building
Posted by: McQ on Thursday, May 04, 2006

Mickey Kaus points out that those sending bricks to Congress are having an impact. He also notes that a wall is turning into a bipartisan subject as well:
Sending bricks in the mail to Congress to indicate support for a border wall—now that seems like potentially a highly effective bit of political theater. ... Here's a site organizing the stunt. ... Remember, a wall or fence is not necessarily a "conservative" solution. (See below.) It seems less disruptive—to illegal workers, especially—than other methods of border enforcement, including "interior" enforcement by requiring employers to check documents. And the better the wall, the easier it is to eventually legalize those on this side of it. ...
As support for this type of barrier to stop illegals build, I remain somewhat ambivalent. But a point to be made when considering such a thing. Our southern border is 1,952 miles long. When you analyze it, it breaks down into about 1,200 miiles of "no-go" terrain and 700 miles of "go" terrain, the difference being "go" terrain offers relatively easy access to the US and "no go" terrain is potentially lethal, most likely because of the distance from the border to the first water and civilization.

I'm still trying to determine whether the bulk of the 1,200 remaining miles is truly "no-go" territory, or simply not as convenient as the 700 miles normally used. Or said another way, if a 700 mile fence were erected would it really stop the flow of illegals or would we find ourselves in a "stage two" project erecting another 700 miles at some time in the future.

One thing it certainly would do is change the flow of illegals. Whether that makes them less likely to risk the "no-go" territory or not is still unclear.

Cost for the 700 miles under consideration, which would include a double fence, road in between for patrolling, cameras, motion detection sensors, 2 8 foot vehicle ditches and two rows of concertina outside the vehicle ditches at around 8 billion (of course that's a government estimate so double it automatically).

Regardless of how you feel about this, support is building on both sides of the isle. It is going to be interesting to see how it is played by both sides in the midterms. It may be a preview of the '08 election.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

I’d say its more of a flow problem... Reducing the area thru which illegals can cross will necessarily decrease the total volume crossing if the per unit flow rate remains constant, or increase the per unit flow rate if the volume remains constant. Both are desirable outcomes, the first for obvious reasons, the second because it allows border patrol to focus its resources on a smaller area - an ecomony of reduction of scale if you will. Furthermore, knowing that the easy passages are blocked, folks likely will be a bit more circumspect about making such passage.
Written By: bains
URL: http://
Well, I had a good feeling that the "Immigrant" boycotts and protests were going to backfire the other day.

My liberal boss and I agree that the issue needs to be dealt with, and we agree that the first thing to do is stop more illegal aliens from coming here.

As to a wall, start with the urban areas and high traffic areas. Without border enforcement, all the laws are going to be for naught.

Personally we ought to offer citizenship to any illegal alien already here for their labor in building the fence/wall.
Written By: Keith, Indy
URL: http://
Personally we ought to offer citizenship to any illegal alien already here for their labor in building the fence/wall.
Now THAT is an idea. How long would it take to buld the wall if 1 million laborers showed up? Work for a few weeks building the wall and walk away with your green card. Hmmm, I think you are on to something Keith -
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
Ah, but you forgot about the solidarity of La Raza, which will endure despite your feeble attempts to foment dissension.
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
your feeble attempts to foment dissension
Try saying that after 3 shots of tequila ;-)

Solidarity... I’m not sure how solid it would be if they had a clear choice for staying or going. I believe the correct term would be ’AMF"!!!!!
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
Don’t forget about the wall around California, too.

Written By: rammage
Where there are walls, there are tunnels. Anybody want to bet that Haliburton gets the contract to build it?
Written By: cindyb
URL: http://
Where there are walls, there are tunnels. Anybody want to bet that Haliburton gets the contract to build it?
"Bush fumbled, Mexicans tunneled" ??
Written By: shark
URL: http://
I think bains made a strong analytical point that I agree with. You have to start somewhere, so let’s do the optimum 700 miles, and once that’s in place for a while, then reassess the flow, and do the next optimum.
Written By: Knox
To quote Professor Bernardo de la Paz in "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress":
Manuel, when faced with a problem you do not understand, do any part of it you do understand, then look at it again.
At least part of a solution has to be a means to reduce the transparent border we have now. Some sort of wall is the obvious first line of defense at that.

We don’t know how big an effect it will have, but it will certainly have some. At this point, the problem is serious enough to take on that task, even at the risk that it will not work as well as we would like, or end up having bad cost-benefit.

Once we know how well a wall staunches the flow, we’ll have a much better idea of what to try next.

Keep in mind that we have problems today, and at least one big potential problem for the future. Today, we get too many illegals to assimilate, and many of them don’t want to anyway. Plus the open border is an invitation for terrorists to cross. These problems need immediate attention.

For the future, it looks all too possible that large swaths of Latin America are going to descend into socialism/communism again (will they never learn?). If that happens in Mexico, then the problem will suddenly get much, much worse. If we have not already made substantial progress in figuring out a solution by then, we’re well and truly hosed.
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
The only advantage if Mexico does go Red, is quite suddenly large number of our new immigrants will suddenly have EVERY intention of returning their version of democracy to Mexico, probably by force of arms. I also submit the border will be closed from the southern side, and we’ll have Mexican incursions to worry about as they deal with ’rebels’ on the US side.

Ironically we’ll be rooting for every ’immigrant’ that tries to make it across no-mans-land from Mexico.
Written By: looker
URL: http://
How can you NOT support that ? What in the name of all that is holy is ANY reason to oppose building a wall / fence / barrier. It’s the border of a soveriegn nation that people should not be crossing illegally. The cost is paltry compared the potential savings in both illegal immigration and the possible consequences of a terrorist attack enabled by the current porous border.

The wall is, simply put, a "no-brainer".
Written By: Sherard
URL: http://

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