Don't build this wall
Shikha Dalmia at Reason.com: "Even the Cold War border between the two Germanies, the most fortified manmade barrier, was breached about a thousand times a year. That, however, is not deterring House Republicans from demanding 'fully secure' borders as a condition for immigration reform. ...
"The comprehensive immigration reform that the Senate passed recently would, thanks to Republican insistence, increase border security spending by a whopping $46.3 billion over the next 10 years. ... Coming on top of the $90 billion already spent on border security in the last decade, it mocks Republican calls for austerity.
"In a world of limited means, spending more on harmless unauthorized workers means spending less on genuine criminals, hardly a recipe for making America safe. This is the same illogic that enviros deploy when they waste billions to scrub superfund sites to make the dirt edible by children instead of prioritizing cleanup dollars to fight genuine health threats."
It was never about race
Rich Lowry at Politico: "The George Zimmerman trial is the racial metaphor that failed. Every day that passes makes it clear that none of the ideological baggage heaped on the case ever made any sense.
"George Zimmerman is not a symbol of white America, or -- to borrow the stilted phrase The New York Times used to refer to him in its reports -- white-Hispanic America. The case is not about race relations. Incredibly enough, even the attorney for Trayvon Martin's family now says, 'We don't believe the focus was really race.'
"To the extent that the trial has any larger meaning, it is a tale of the left's desperation to indict contemporary America as a land of rank racism, different in degree, perhaps, but not in kind from 1950s Mississippi."
No more women
Satirist Andy Borowitz: "AUSTIN -- Republican lawmakers in the Texas State Senate are proposing a precedent-setting new bill that would make it illegal for women to live in the state. Sen. Harland Dorrinson, one of the many pro-life lawmakers backing the woman ban, crafted his bill after witnessing Sen. Wendy Davis filibuster an anti-abortion bill last month. 'That was our moment to say, "Enough is enough," ' he said. 'This comes down to a choice between life and women, and we choose life.'
"Sen. Dorrinson said his bill would call for a 20-foot woman-proof fence to be constructed along the borders of the state. 'Women are great at talking, but not at climbing,' he observed.
"But another GOP state senator, Cal Jamson, believes that the total ban on women goes 'too far' and is proposing a less draconian bill that would allow some women to remain in the state as guest workers. 'Texas needs women to cook, clean, and cheerlead,' he said."
The poor don't count
Matthew Yglesias at Slate: "Some people who advocate large-scale cuts in government programs that assist low-income families are not in fact motivated by callous disregard for the welfare of poor families. Some of them are driven by a principled dislike of government programs. The 216 House Republicans who voted for [last week's] agriculture bill, however, are not in that group.
"In the wake of last month's legislative shenanigans. the GOP leadership decided to move a bill that exclusively funds farm subsidies with no food stamps component at all. And 216 Republicans voted for it. Because they don't have a problem with spending $195 billion over 10 years, they just want to make sure it goes to the right people. Not poor people, in other words. Farmers. Farmers who, on average, are richer than the typical American."
Paul Whitefield, blogging for the Los Angeles Times: "That's it -- I am now officially out of step with modern life. What else can I say after reading this: 'Most adults always have smartphone close by, 1 in 10 use it during sex.' ...
"Now, everyone knows we live in a wired world. We're connected. We're 24/7 multi-tasking, multi-purpose, increased-productivity workaholics. But, with the wisdom of more than a few decades, and at the risk of being labeled a curmudgeon, I submit that there are some places a phone -- smart, dumb or otherwise -- simply doesn't belong: At a funeral; in church; at the theater; in a driver's hand/ear/lap in a moving car ... and certainly not in the sack."
Greg Victor (firstname.lastname@example.org).