The Wall around Russia

Actually, you would have to call it the wall around the old Soviet Union to be absolutely correct, but this can do for now. The point is the value of a wall in the first place. Are they to keep people out or to keep people in? I have never been able to figure that out.

Here’s some recent scuttlebutt on the wall and politics and the orange buffoon’s threat to shut down government if he doesn’t get what he thinks he wants. Probably worth a read just to fill yourself in on something you already know too much about.

But I’m more intrigued about the idea of the wall. We have been hearing about this for more than three years now, I would suggest, and we haven’t yet pulled the plug on this idea, which violates not only our own mythology as the beacon country for the world’s oppressed, but also our practical good sense in dealing with issues.

I lived in Russia for two years as a reporter and came away with a deep and abiding respect for the Russian capacity to distort anything to the nation’s advantage. Gawd they were such wonderful liars. They did the same thing every time. Settle on a snippet of something that seems true then build a fire under it until it blossoms into a full blown lie with heat and light attached. Then exploit it.

This is apparently the same stunt the Russians have been trying with our election process, which produced a good deal of success. But I digress. I want to talk about the wall as a concept. It’s a bad idea. The Russians had walls so high you couldn’t broadcast into the place and it all still failed. Communism simply wasn’t compelling enough to draw the support of the people it said it wanted to help.

The same is true of the wall idea.

We should just be here to give everyone what they want.

I want us to be an open country. I don’t believe everyone is evil. Some of them are. But I believe the authorities are good enough to get the ones who are bad. The rest should just be able to plop their bodies right in here and start making good money, which is what America has always been about.

Forget the shining city  on a hill metaphor.

It’s about money and people who want to make some. You don’t want people like that to be kept out of the nation, you want them to be welcomed in to continue with our fabulous array of things and services to buy and sell. We keep trying to romanticize this, but reality precludes anything of a romantic nature.

America is, was and will continue to be about business. So let’s get as many smart people as we can and continue to pursue that. We don’t need no stinkin’ quotas or anything. Just unleash the demon and let it romp.

Will these folks take American jobs? I don’t think so for about two generations or so, and by that time it won’t matter because they will all be Americans who have America’s jobs. As for the jobs  they might take initially, when was the last time we had armies of young boys with power mowers knocking on doors? Maybe Norman Rockwell paintings remember that, but most of you can’t. You dont want your kids mowing lawns. You want them writing code.

So these characters can come in to mow the lawns while their children learn how to write code and become productive Americans.

Who could ask for anything more?

Behind every little team of lawn mowers and leaf blowers there are people who have dreams and ambitions. We should be using that. We should be saying, “Here is what America is about, hard work in exchange for money, no matter the level!”

Then let them just go get it.

In life, almost everyone wants to be able to pay $5 for a damned medium latte.

So let’s enable that, okay?

Don’t build a wall. Paint arrows pointed north on the highways of South and Central America and Mexico and then welcome them in with the caveat that there’s not much point in coming if you don’t have an idea for a job.

Perhaps you are thinking, “Oh, then we will have to learn Spanish!” Well, yes, that is one of the consequences. Take a look at Finland, where everyone speaks a whole handful of languages and enjoys a pretty high standard of living.

That’s not about walls. That’s about smarts.