Squaring the Burkle.

A mostly political Weblog.
April 17 2006 4:54 AM

kf Tries to Square the Burkle!

Why I'm flummoxed by the Page Six scandal.

(Continued from Page 14)

Why isn't it the Dems who are split on immigration?

Realistically, we'll need to reduce the inflow of low-skill immigrants. Mainly that means better controls on illegal immigration. [Emph. added]

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Tom Tancredo? No, Paul Krugman, endorsing several border-control arguments  before trying to preserve his Dem street cred by denouncing the House anti-illegal bill as "harsh" and "immoral." Most significantly, Krugman says "serious, non-partisan research" reveals that

Because Mexican immigrants have much less education than the average U.S. worker, they increase the supply of less-skilled labor, driving down the wages of the worst-paid Americans. The most authoritative recent study of this effect, by George Borjas and Lawrence Katz of Harvard, estimates that U.S. high school dropouts would earn as much as 8 percent more if it weren't for Mexican immigration. [Emph. added]

Krugman is clearly way off the PC/Dem/elite legalization reservation here. Republican Tony Blankley noticed. But will the Left? ... P.S.: The effect of immigrants in driving down the wages of unskilled African-American men is not just an economic question. It's a profound social question. Only by offering a decent living through legitimate work will we have a chance of integrating the large segment--maybe almost half--of the black male populations that's currently spinning off into a separate, destructive, "left behind" culture (even as black women are joining the regular labor force in record numbers). Where's the Congressional Black Caucus? ... Note: CBC member Rep. Harold Ford, Jr., who's running for the Senate, did vote for the House bill on final passage. ... 1:11 A.M.

Where's Rasmussen? Isn't it time for: A) One of the GOP presidential candidates to rip Sen. McCain for his support of a liberal "path to citizenship" amnesty for existing illegal immigrants;  B) A reality-check poll--taken after the big pro-immigration rallies--on the public's suport for or opposition to that scheme. This seems like the sort of question in which the wording will be very important, but I'd be shocked if a fairly worded question doesn't measure at least 55 percent opposition. ... 5:51 P.M.

Grades were never his strong suit! The compensation committee at the New York Times, chaired by Sara Lee CEO Brenda Barnes, gets a "D" from proxy watchdog service Glass Lewis for nearly doubling the stock award to hereditary Chairman Pinch Sulzberger during the same period the company performed "poorly," reports Keith Kelly. ... P.S.: The Times now faces massive exposure in the Steven Hatfill libel case against columnist Nicholas 'I Might Have Gotten it Right'  Kristof. The Times crowed a year and a half ago when a wildly unconvincing lower court decision seemed to get Kristof off the hook for his op-ed on the anthrax mailings of 2001, which discussed Hatfill. But a lonely blogger said 'Wait!'

[T]he part of the [lower] court decision I don't understand--it seems quite bogus--is the part where the judge throws out Hatfill's libel complaint about these alleged "discrete untruths" (like the one regarding how many polygraph exams Hatfill had taken and what the results were). Sure, Kristof can't be sued simply for reporting on an investigation, and he covered his ass enough in his columns to avoid the conclusion that he was saying Hatfill was the anthrax mailer. But does that mean he can say any old untrue thing about Hatfill along the way? For example, how exactly did the judge conclude that saying Hatfill had "failed 3 successive polygraph examinations" was "not harmful to [Hatfill's] reputation"? Wouldn't that harm anyone's reputation?

An intermediate court reversed the lower court decision, affirming the Kristof column's potentially libelous status--a decision the Supreme Court has now refused to review. The case is heading for trial. ... P.P.S.: Sulzberger, while his own Times stock grants were almost doubling, eliminated a plan that gave mere employees a 15 percent discount to buy thestock, according to Kelly. Pinch might want to keep some special stock deal in place for Kristof, though--it's not clear the Times would want him to testify too clearly about the op-ed page's elaborate fact-checking procedures, which I suspect are not dissimilar from a lonely blogger's. ... 11:29 A.M.

To Joel Stein: And here I was your biggest defender. ... 12:06 A.M.

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