Tell you what

The Donald Trump campaign is very busily denying that the Republican nominee is in any way reconsidering his views on immigration, thanks to a Buzzfeed article over the weekend in which several of Trump's Latino advisory group said they thought he might be open to something other than deporting all 11 million people in the USA without proper documentation. It's a pretty interesting spin fest, with all the usual hallmarks of an impending change in Trump "policy" -- which is never really policy anyway, just whatever squirrels are running around inside his head at any given moment. Trump scheduled and then cancelled a major policy teleprompter speech for Thursday on immigration, which means we'll have to wait a while for him to deny he ever said he was going to deport everyone anyway, then offer a half-dozen other self-contradictory ideas on immigration which magically neither include a plan for deporting people nor any acknowledgment that he's changed his mind. Fortunately, that's not really what we're looking at in this article anyway. No, what we're looking at is one beautifully stupid thing Eric Trump said about his father's immigration policy, whatever it may be, and why immigrants are very very bad.

Here's Eric Trump 'splaining to "The Fox And the Friends" Monday how his dad has the greatest, wisest immigration plan that he can't tell you yet, but is just absolutely needed to solve our huge immigration problem:

But you know, my father’s immigration plan is pretty simple. He wants secure borders. You have to know who’s coming into the United States of America. You can't let people come in unchecked. We have 100 million people in this country that are out of the workforce. Right? I mean we have manufacturing jobs in this country have gone down one-third since 2000. We're losing jobs across the board, yet people are walking in unchecked and we don't know who they are. And they could be ISIS."

OK, that's bullshit on the open borders nonsense and the ISIS fearmongering, but we've heard that already. Anything new, Eric?

Trump said his father "wants a safe country, and he also wants Americans to have jobs."

"I mean, they should come first. You were born in this country. You were born here legally. You’re here legally. I mean, wages have been stagnant for the last 15 years and it's because you have, you know, Syrian refugees coming in," Eric Trump continued.

Uh huh. Between 2012 and November 2015, The U.S. admitted a whopping 2,174 Syrian refugees. Truly a flood -- nearly 0.0007% of the American population -- that has kept job growth flat somehow. Now, President Obama did commit last fall to taking in another 10,000 in fiscal year 2016, a goal the government seems likely to meet, so that's an enormous drag on the economy right there, spread out across the entire population of 320 million.

Now, to be fair, Eric Trump did go on to blame Messicans for wrecking wages, too:

It’s because you have, you know, thousands of people coming over the border. I mean, and Americans are suffering because of it and that's his point. So he's speaking to Hispanic and Latino leaders and he’s having really amazing conversations. He’s also speaking to law enforcement, he’s speaking to border patrol. And you know he’s going formulate a really, really great plan that's humane and ethical and that treats everybody well. But we have to solve the problem. It’s a real problem for this country.

GreatwonderfulAMAZING plans. So apparently these "thousands" of illegal immigrants have depressed wages across the economy, a cause which all economic experts named Trump agree on.

Just to double check -- in the most scientific way possible -- we googled "causes of wage stagnation" and searched for "immigration" and "immigrants" in the first few articles that came up. Like we say, sciencey! The Economic Policy Institute mentions "immigrants" exactly once -- not as causes of wage stagnation, but as victims of it, since they may face difficulty "in simply getting paid for the work they do (i.e., the problem of 'wage theft')." The AFL-CIO, which you might think would have a motive to blame immigrants for flat wages, simply cites the EPI's observation about immigrants being hurt by wage theft. Not found in Fortune, the Brookings Institution, Real Clear Markets, or the Pew Research Center. Oh! Oh! But The Cato Institute's David Bier wrote a whole article on whether immigrants are causing flat wages! Let's see what the Libertarian says -- bet he can't STAND those awful immigrants!

In addition to not being the “principal reason” for wage stagnation, immigrants aren’t any reason at all. As I pointed out in a paper last year, both economists who favor more immigration — notably Gianmarco Ottaviano of the London School of Economics and Giovanni Peri of the University of California at Davis — and those who don’t — most notably Harvard’s George Borjas — actually agree that immigration has increased average wages in the United States. The only real debate is over immigration’s short-term effect on wages for high school dropouts. Immigrants aren’t harming the “average family” at all.


So like we were saying, this Eric Trump guy is not very smart, the end.

[TPM / Buzzfeed / Politico via Katie McDonough on Twitter / Guardian / Economic Policy Institute / AFL-CIO / Fortune / Brookings Institution / Real Clear Markets / Pew Research Center / Foundation for Economic Education]

Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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Oh hi! Michael Cohen is going to jail, because he is guilty! Just like Paul Manafort is guilty and GO THE FUCK TO JAIL! WHERE HE ALREADY WAS! (Read up on that here!) And all this news came out in the same hour, somehow, because we live in the dumbest fucking episode of "Law & Order" Dick Wolf ever threw on the cutting room floor, on account of how it was too stupid for words.

However, Cohen avoided a big nasty trial (or series of trials, like Manafort opted for) by just cold pleading guilty to a buncha fuckin' crimes, like a crimer who does a buncha fuckin' crimes all the time. And he implicated Donald Trump in a couple of them!

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HOLY FUCK this afternoon! Michael Cohen just finished a hearing in a New York courtroom where he said, "DURRRR I AM SO GUILTY," but this post is not about that. This post is about how Paul Manafort verdict has just come out! He has been found guilty on eight of the 18 charges he faced in the Eastern District of Virginia (EDVA). The jury is hopelessly deadlocked on the other 10, and so a mistrial will be declared on those and Paul Manafort may get to be retried on them, in addition to his next trial over conspiracies against the United States and witness tampering, which starts next month in Washington DC. Maybe the government will decide Manafort is going to die in jail anyway, and play hooky from retrying those other counts. They probably need a vacay, don't you think?

Trump really does hire the best people!

NBC News's Ken Dilanian broke the news that Manafort has been convicted on five counts of tax fraud, one count of failing to report a foreign bank account on an IRS form, and two charges of bank fraud. The short version of that is that he is guilty of EIGHT FEDERAL FELONIES (so far) and he is going to jail for EIGHT MILLION YEARS for each count. (OK, that is probably not completely accurate. But still, welcome to prison, Paul Manafort!)

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