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America's new border fence

By Tom Toles



It's gotta hurt

Lots of good comments last week! People are chewing hard on me, and I like that. I wrote a song for my band called It's Gotta Hurt, ostensibly about masochism, which I am actually not into in the ordinary sense. I meant it as a funny song. Now I'm thinking it's impossible to write ANYTHING without revealing SOMETHING. Now there is an unsettling thought for somebody who's writing something every day. OH WELL, we're in the post-privacy era, as Venus Williams has just reminded us.

I dish it out a lot, and it's actually a good thing to have it come back at me, hard. Who wants to play tennis with an empty court? (I promised not to write about sports again, but Venus Williams distracted me.) And while commenters and I are still mostly talking past each other, we're talking past each other in REAL CLOSE PROXIMITY. Perhaps OSMOSIS will occur!
Diffusion through a semi-permeable membrane! This has to be a good thing. A start, anyway. And maybe someday the taunting will even stop. But not today. Conservatives need to admit that Sarah Palin is an out-and-out preposterous fraud first. --Tom Toles




By Tom Toles  | June 1, 2010; 12:00 AM ET
Categories:  Polarization  
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Next: Can the GOP make up its mind?

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You may want to educate yourself on what the Libertarian party stands for. Your characterization is false.

Also, I don't see any room for libertarians in the modern Democratic Party either. The modern liberals seem to have forgotten that property and economic rights are civil liberties too.

The only party that actually holds to the original intent of the framers is the Libertarian Party.

On another note: Tea Partier does not mean libertarian. That movement has been pre-empted by the conservatives.

Posted by: BradG | June 1, 2010 7:49 PM | Report abuse

The fence between North and South Korea is quite formidable. Since Mexico has no interest in a fence we must do the whole job. It is not difficult. Build a fence, from one end to the other. One that is as good as the Korean fence. That is the job. President Obama wants infrastructure jobs, this is a perfect one. It creates temporary jobs and produces a vital system to protect our Nation. There is nothing that the President can argue about. Build the fence. Build the fence. Build the fence.

Posted by: bobbo2 | June 1, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Someone I work with was commenting last week that, History will undoubtedly see Barack Obama as the MOST (not second-most but MOST!) corrupt president the United States has ever seen. Ever! Oh, and a Socialist, to boot.
And then proceeded to complain about the lack of civility between people from different political backgrounds.

Imagine. A lack of civility.

Key in Glenn Beck sniffling, and bring in the clowns. Could even be fodder for a cartoon...

Posted by: jonroesler | June 1, 2010 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Tom---First of all we do not need a fence to persuade anyone or anything from illegally entering into our country! Microwave towers strategically place along our borders is all that we require to prevent anyone from entering this country. We also have satellites that can operate in the same way and can also monitor what goes on below ground level. These technologies have been operational for a long time. So why were they not utilized?

The damage that has already been done because this illegal immigration was either encouraged or just naturally allowed to take place and is now preventing naturalized citizens from becoming re-employed or creating wage decreases for them. If the majority of citizens in this country do not want them here then they should all be forced to leave.

Is Sarah Palin a fraud or just another politician like any other who mostly just wants to further their own personal agenda?

Is it even possible for an American to enter into politics based upon a complete and honest practical approach? If that is the case then we really no longer can call the type of government we have in America a Democracy.

Tom Toles---Why does the media foster these methods of deception by our government? Are those employed my the media moguls not being allowed to expose or reveal all the facts or potential government operations that have been downgrading the overall quality of life and living conditions for the majority of American citizens?

As far as Venus goes. Why did she wait till later in her career to show that off when it was smaller and probably looked better in her earlier days. She could do like NASCAR and paint her sponsors logo there. From Beads to Bottoms. Venus you've come along way Baby!

Posted by: JONAHandtheFISH | June 1, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

I was going to comment on the different “points” in your “verbiage”….was.
After reading the comments and hearing the “same old song and dance”, I’ve changed my mind.
I don’t like “politics”, never have. I believe that comes from the fact that “politics” have absolutely Nothing to do with a Politic State!! This type of “mindless and sometimes “sadistic” banter is just a waste of time and “type”. But hey, continue to bang your heads on that wall all you want…Osmosis???? Good luck with that.
As for Palin…I watched a very intense and well played Hockey game yest. Eve.
Palin’s self description of a Hockey mom pretty much explained what type of woman/politician, she is.
In it for the game. In it for the power plays. In it for the cheers of the crowd. She is self serving and wants “her team” to win no matter how badly their game is being played not to mention their game plan.
Guess I commented on your “verbiage” after all….go figure.

Posted by: bertzel | June 1, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Living by the border, in AZ, I can't wait for the second fence to be built to go with the first one.

Fences make good neighbors. No fence allows immoral people to feel that they belong here.

Posted by: r_leever | June 1, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

What’s all this business about which side of TT's wall is for Independents and Librarians? I’ve known quite a few in my tenure on Earth, and I can honestly say that they’re not generally one way or the other. I’ve even encountered some nice ones; on the other hand, you’ve got your cranksters who can’t take a laugh, let alone hear one. “SHSHSHSHS – THIS IS A LIBRARY – CAN’T YOU READ?” Which reminds me of the time that I was waiting for a train in the DC subway, minding my own business, chomping away on some cashews (whole ones, as opposed to the cheaper “pieces” option), and this woman who looked either bi-polar or homeless or both, approached me and shouted in my face: “CAN’T YOU READ???” – all while pointing at one of those universal signs designating the area as a “no eating” zone. I told her “no” and pushed her onto the tracks. (Just kidding about the tracks, but not about the “no.”) So anyway, that’s what I think about the wall, Independents, and Librarians.

Posted by: dudeupnorth | June 1, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Give 'em HELL Tom!

"Only by going to far, can one possibly know how far one can go." T.S. Elliott (I think)

Posted by: BattleOffSamar | June 1, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

1986 amnesty promises? You mean the Reagan/Bush I administrations didn't fulfill promises? Reagan didn't fulfill a promise? The Sainted Dear Leader?

(You go, Tom!)

Posted by: GeneTouchet | June 1, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse


Good blog post, actually. I don't agree with it all but its logically presented. with the business over individual auto-vote case you try to make but both sides float those lead balloons every election. Independents certainly don't see themselves as fools but I do agree that folks need to Observe Orient Decide Act . The future of the country is always at stake and Independents should play a larger role.
Finally, I would submit that party affiliation is a partial contributer to executive decisions but not necessarily the best predictor. That's one for further reflection.

Posted by: pararanger22 | June 1, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse

Tom, are you getting sucked into the propaganda vortex?

The Republican higher-ups know that Palin is preposterous. They know she's a blunt instrument. But that doesn't mean they'll disown her.

Ever heard the expression, "useful idiot"?

Posted by: HumanistPatriot | June 1, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse

To "pararanger22," who posited:

"I notice there is no room on either side of the fence for independents or Libertarians."

There actually is considerable room on our (meaning the Democratic Party's) for actual lower-case "L" libertarians, which means people who regard civil liberties as being one of the paramount purposes for which our Founders created this great nation. I have never known a Republican president to appoint a real libertarian onto any United States Court at any level, although Democrats have appointed such great libertarians as Hugo Black, William O. Douglas, and William Brennan.

Upper-case "L" Libertarians, on the other hand, are political children who, like children who, if given their choices, would try to subsist on a diet exclusively made up of candy, seem to think that libertarianism means crippling the government's regulatory and law enforcement capabilities and eliminating taxes. As far as I am aware, the only nations that actually succeeded in eliminating taxes were the communist regimes we faced off against during the Cold War. I do not regard those nations as holding libertarian principles in deep reverence.

Independents, on the other hand, are merely political fools. They do not understand how malleable their own opinions, nor do they have any real feel for the things they are unable to know or to learn, so they think they will "vote the man, not the party."

The only real problem with this, however, is how does one come to know "the man" and how he will behave once in office. Campaign promises are notoriously unreliable, and candidates of all ideological stripes are well-trained in conveying a desired image, carefully cultivating the firm handshake, the twinkle in the eye, and the authoritative tone with which they speak. These are the things that impress impressionable "independents" and lead them to prefer one candidate with the smooth exterior to a more reserved, perhaps nerdly sort who would actually more effectively serve their interests once in office.

They fail to recognize that, although far from perfect, the best predictor of a candidate's performance in office once elected is party affiliation. This is more reliable when it comes to Republicans than it is with the less disciplined Democrats, because Republicans can be depended upon ALWAYS, INVARIABLY to act (although not necessarily to speak) in the interests of business over individuals, with the bigger businesses reaping the greatest benefits of their rule.

So we do not necessarily welcome children or fools into our decision-making processes, but I think that perhaps that is as it should be.

Posted by: FergusonFoont | June 1, 2010 9:35 AM | Report abuse

I notice there is no room on either side of the fence for independents or Libertarians.

Posted by: pararanger22 | June 1, 2010 9:05 AM | Report abuse

OK, Tom, you almost got me again, like you did last week when you presented yourself as a reasonable man then turned right back to what you are. I don't want to change you, but I've got to agree with you and your “preposterous” statement about Palin first? Come on, Tom!

Posted by: quiensabe | June 1, 2010 8:44 AM | Report abuse


Question: why is your blog set up differently than other WP blogs where you can 'recommend' blog posts to other members? Just curious.


Posted by: pararanger22 | June 1, 2010 7:58 AM | Report abuse

Once the last segment of the fence is installed, which side will the independents scamper to? I doubt that they will balance themselves on top of it.

Posted by: bobbo2 | June 1, 2010 7:45 AM | Report abuse

"Conservatives need to admit that Sarah Palin is an out-and-out preposterous fraud first."

Hey, I am no fan of Palin. But your choice of words is interesting. We are still reeling from the false promises made in exchange for the amnesty in 1986. If you think Palin is a fraud, go back and check out those promises and what became of them.

Posted by: hipshot | June 1, 2010 7:09 AM | Report abuse

Tom the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) already tried your wall idea and you see how well it worked out. Once the people on the left side of the wall hear about the no toilet paper ban on the right side you know what will happen. Thought libs didn't dwell in the past?

Posted by: carbonhog | June 1, 2010 6:11 AM | Report abuse

Build the damn fence!!! No Amnesty!!!

Posted by: billjwilson | June 1, 2010 3:30 AM | Report abuse

Welcome to the DSA, Divided States of America.
Seems that was tried once... some kind of kerfuffle ensued I believe.
It would probably work better this time. I say, go for it.

Posted by: hudsonart | May 31, 2010 11:53 PM | Report abuse

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