Donald Trump went into a gathering of special interests, on March 6. It was comprised of Goldman-Sachs Democrat Ivanka Trump, American multinational CEOs like Apple’s Tim Cook and assorted Chamber of Commerce lobbyists.
The president of the United States (POTUS) then emerged with assurances to all those lowly American workers sick of rising wages and growing employment opportunists. He was now fully committed to the importation of still more foreign workers to “give … to large companies.” Yes! He listened! Deplorables were getting sick of winning.
Ivanka, who clearly calls the shots on the un-American Workforce Policy Advisory Board, sermonized blithely about retraining American workers (who don’t have daddies to hire them).
Last year, when the same kind of cabal tried to make Trump dance to its drums, POTUS responded with his notorious “shithole countries” epithet. He was not bringing in people from, well, you know the rest.
All this made me long for the time Gen. John Kelly, formerly White House chief of staff, was present to stop first daughter Ivanka from, as the general put it, “playing government.”
Nostalgically, I traveled back in time to survey the Trump “shithole countries” designation—and destinations. Was he proven right in his aversion to accelerating the tipping point in our own country?
Haiti is located in the Caribbean Sea, east of Cuba. The country is forever convulsed by political or natural disasters.
In January of 2010, this, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere—where four out of five people live in poverty and more than half in abject poverty (NYT)—was struck by a massive, magnitude-7.0 earthquake.
The rescuers, spokespersons, geological surveyors and geophysicists; the missionaries, medicine and military men and women; the aid-deliverers—most all were Westerners. Without the West, Haitians would no longer be hobbling along in their post-apocalyptic zombie land.
In the aftermath of the Indian Ocean tsunami, the gravest danger was an epidemic; the greatest danger in the wake of the Haiti disaster was a crime wave worse than the one ongoing.
Southwest of Haiti, bounded by the Pacific Ocean and the Andes, is the Republic of Chile.
Only on CNN did they attempt to dispute the fact that Chile had coped swimmingly with what was “one of the most powerful earthquakes in history.”
At the time of Chile’s March 2010 tremblor, the West’s malfunctioning media ran a lot of pieces about the little looting in Chile, following that disaster. It was as though activists at CNN, Anderson Cooper in the lead, had been hoping that Chile, who’d been subjected to aftershocks as strong as Haiti’s main event, would fare as poorly as did “the Africa of the Western Hemisphere.”
Not mine, that last reference is to Haiti (which, as mentioned, had undergone a massive event around the same time as did Chile). “A piece of Africa transported to the new world” is how David S. Landes described Haiti in a 1986 article for The New Republic, entitled “Slaves and Slaughter.” The article belongs to a time when scholars were more honest.
Our anchors-cum-activists at CNN penned derogatory blogs about Chile (dominated as it is, demographically, by conquistadors). One got the impression that had CNN let rip, the blog, “In Chile, looters are leaving the biggest aftershocks,” would have been titled “Chile Earthquake Proves White People Loot a Lot.”
But Cooper and company were destined for disappointment. The death toll in Chile was quickly revised down from about 800 to 452. Troops and firefighters galvanized. Chilean telethons were conducted without George Clooney. And Chileans were soon flying patriotic slogans such as “Chile Helps Chile,” something you never saw in Haiti.
No doubt, non-“shithole countries” seem to recover quickly from disasters, natural or man-made. To wit:
In 2008, Iceland collapsed under the weight of its banking industry’s federal-reserve like excesses.
In 2018, Iceland has a red-hot economy. The highly able population has shifted from finance to technology and tourism. No bailouts—allowing the banks to collapse and a natural recovery to take place—had a lot to do with Iceland’s success. But brainpower and resolve were needed to arrive at that determination.
Likewise did Chile, but not Haiti, cope reasonably well with what was “one of the most powerful earthquakes in history.”
It’s nearly two decades since a pair of earthquakes struck El Salvador in 2001. The U.S. government granted Salvadorians a generous grant of privilege, in the form of a temporary protected status (TPS) for nearly 200,000. The American taxpayer did the same for the “Haitians who were stranded after the 2010 earthquake.”
To the din of protest, “the United States’ Department of Homeland Security has only recently revoked the longest of the “temporary” protection grants lasting nearly two decades.
“Shithole countries,” a Trump coinage, don’t seem to recover very well from disasters, natural or man-made, now do they?
Yet to the dilemma, “What makes a country, people or place?”, Chilean leaders have, alas, responded unintuitively.
Via the Wall Street Journal comes news that,
… one of Latin America’s richest and safest countries has opened its doors to some of the region’s poorest migrants in record numbers. … the most dramatic surge has come from Haiti. Last year, almost 105,000 Haitians entered Chile, compared with about 49,000 in 2016 and just a handful a decade ago, according to federal police that oversee border crossings.
Once a country transitions to “shithole” status, it is well-nigh impossible to make it great again.
And once a populist president takes dictation from his globalist daughter … well, you know the rest.