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Rebuilding needs, here and there April 9, 2006

Posted by tkcollier in Economy & Business, In The News, philosophy & politics.
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Rebuilding needs, here and there – Commentary – The Washington Times,
In Los Angeles, 95 percent of outstanding homicide warrants are for illegal aliens. The lethal 18th Street Gang has an estimated 20,000 members, over half illegal aliens, according to a ranking member of LAPD, speaking not for attribution. The LA-based MS-13 (Mara Salvatruchka), whose membership was originally limited to street-tough Salvadorans, now numbers 50,000 (10,000 in Los Angeles alone). These gangs thrive where infrastructure decays.

While I think it is a bit of strech to blame crumbling infrastructure for criminal gangs, De Borchgrave's commentary is alarming. This criminal imprint stretches from coast to coast and is present in every major city. MS-13 arose from the defeated Marxist FMLN in El Salvador and now has links with the Cosa Nostra. FBI counterintelligence agents worry about al Qaeda infiltration through Central America. MS-13 has an estimated 300,000 members in Mexico and Central America. Interestingly, its MO is to redistribute the fruits of its crimes to a network of corner stores owned and operated by Middle Eastern and Asian immigrants that sell at heavily discounted prices and causes them to think they steal from the rich to give to the poor, uncynically pirating the Robin Hood sobriquet. With 1 out of 4 illegals caught crossing the 1,940-mile border with Mexico, the net illegal influx into the United States is between 3 and 4 million each and every year. So 20 million illegals now in the U.S. is probably a safer bet than the 12 million figure bandied about Congress. All of this adds huge costs to the nation, especially for healthcare. Pregnant women who deliver "anchor" babies shortly after eluding border patrols have an instant U.S. citizen in the family. The 14th Amendment stipulates anyone born in the U.S. is a U.S. citizen. Anchor strains on emergency facilities have bankrupted scores of hospitals in the Border States. The 1985 Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA), an unfunded federal mandate, requires emergency departments to treat any uninsured emergency free of charge. Anchor babies pull illegal mothers, fathers and siblings into permanent residency — and public welfare aid. Scams are common. In one clinic, some 300 people were diagnosed as "mildly mentally retarded." They all had the same translator, psychiatrist, symptoms — and similar stipends. All of these put further pressure on a health care system whose costs are soaring out of sight.

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