ILW.COM - the immigration portal Immigration Daily

Home Page


Immigration Daily

Archives

Processing times

Immigration forms

Discussion board

Resources

Blogs

Twitter feed

Immigrant Nation

Attorney2Attorney

CLE Workshops

Immigration books

Advertise on ILW

VIP Network

EB-5

移民日报

About ILW.COM

Connect to us

Make us Homepage

Questions/Comments


SUBSCRIBE

Immigration Daily


Chinese Immig. Daily




The leading
immigration law
publisher - over
50000 pages of
free information!
Copyright
1995-
ILW.COM,
American
Immigration LLC.

View RSS Feed

Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

MY BADGE OF HONOR

Rate this Entry

Some of you may remember in March my comments on the ridiculous claim that Lou Dobbs now makes that he only opposes illegal immigration and is a champion for those who want to come to the US legally. As one who has watched Dobbs' show regularly for years, I knew this was a bunch of malarkey. But how to prove it?



And then it came to me. The great thing about the Internet (and the terrible thing as well in some cases) is that everything lives forever in cyberspace. I went to CNN.com and found that the network publishes transcripts for all of its shows and has them all posted for at least the last six years. I did an exhaustive search of all of the transcripts for Dobbs' show and found more than 100 episodes where legal immigration - non-immigrant visas, green cards and asylum topics - were discussed as opposed to the typical bashing of illegal immigration. And guess what, with one possible exception, every show had something nasty to say about a legal immigration category. I inventoried all of the transcripts and put up links to each story so people could take a look for themselves at each report.



Yesterday I was boarding a plane when I got a call from my assistant telling me that Mr. Dobbs' show had called asking me to be a guest. I had no idea why and while I was planning on declining (I don't think pro-immigration people should be appearing on the show for a variety of reasons), I was curious about why I was being invited. According to the show producer, I was being invited to discuss research on my blog and the show's coverage of immigration. While the chance to get to debate Mr. Dobbs might be fun, I politely declined the invitation. Despite the fact that some folks in the anti camp think I'm just a greedy immigration lawyer and appearing on the Dobbs show would probably be very good for business, I decided to go with my gut instinct.



Then this morning I learned about why I probably got the call from the Dobbs folks. A colleague congratulated me on being mentioned in yesterday's Wall Street Journal in a letter submitted by Douglas Rivlin:



It's the Welcome That Has Changed
May 5, 2008; Page A14





Pope Benedict's visit to the U.S. scratched a nerve with the deportation-only immigration lobby that is revealing. B.J. Khalifah's letter of April 25
says that the difference between today's immigrants and the Irish,
Polish, and Italian immigrants of yesteryear is that the latter came
legally. The immigrants haven't changed, but the welcome has. Unless
you were Chinese, black, or had tuberculosis, you were relatively
assured that you would pass the test at Ellis Island. Now we allow for
just 5,000 low-skilled workers annually to come on permanent employment
visas and scratch our heads when people go around our system, not
through it.



Fred Medero's letter the same day claims that
deportation advocates Tom Tancredo and talk-show host Lou Dobbs are
opposed only to illegal immigration. Research by attorney Greg Siskind
suggests that of 96 times Lou Dobbs talked about legal immigration on
his nightly CNN show, dating back to 2001, 92 times he painted legal
immigration in a negative light.
Rep. Tancredo is a proponent of
eliminating legal immigration altogether, thereby guaranteeing a high
level of illegal immigration in an expanding economy with a retiring
baby-boom generation.



Immigration happens. We are a nation of mutts from all
over the world and we put together the greatest country on the planet.
We should have a legal regime to regulate immigration in a 21st-century
economy. Until we do, Pope Benedict is right that we should respect the
humanity and dignity of individuals and families who are forced to come
illegally because legal avenues are practically non-existent or take
decades to access.



Douglas G. Rivlin

Director of Communication

National Immigration Forum

Washington

Well, that was kind of cool (though Mr. Rivlin was being generous - I believe there was only one non-negative story and it was basically a neutral mention of the O-1 visa category). And given that the National Immigration Forum is a really great organization, even better. And it explained why Dobbs' folks wanted to talk. But then the best part happened. Apparently, while I was on the airplane last night, Dobbs' "news" show aired and the host gave one of his famous holier-than-thou rebuttals to the Rivlin letter. Here's the transcript from CNN.com:

DOBBS: The pro-amnesty lobby at it again, telling all-out lies about my
position on illegal immigration and our border security crisis. The
latest example of the pro-illegal aliens' movements' lies coming in a
letter to the "Wall Street Journal" today. Douglas Rivlin, director of
communication for the National Immigration Forum, says quote, "research
by attorney Greg Siskind suggests that 96 times Lou Dobbs talked about
legal immigration on his nightly CNN show, dating back to 2001, 92
times he painted legal immigration in a negative light."


Well, Mr. Rivlin, here's a little research you might add to your own.
The vast majority of Greg Siskind's analysis is based on my justified
criticism of abuses in the system for temporary work visas,
specifically H1B visas in nearly every case, not legal immigration. As
for other cases cited by Mr. Siskind, who, by the way is, as you might
guess, an immigration lawyer, we highlighted legitimate concerns about
chain migration, terrorism, fraudulent asylum applications, as well.


For the record, I am absolutely supportive of legal immigration. In
fact, I favor even higher levels of legal immigration when it suits
public policy. Let me repeat -- we are the most welcoming nation in the
world for immigrants and I've consistently called for an increase in
legal immigration when warranted.

And also for the record,
we should point out that the National Immigration Forum is supported by
groups such as -- are you ready -- the National Restaurant Association,
the American Nursery and Landscape Association, and the U.S. Chamber of
Commerce, all groups that we should point out, that have a vested
interest in importing as much cheap labor into this country as
possible, and by the way, the "Wall Street Journal" failed to note
that. And, of course, that's understandable, too.

I would just respond to Mr. Dobbs by turning the question back to him - where out of the years and years of your nightly coverage of immigration is there a single positive story on immigration? Yes, a large number of your stories on legal immigration had to do with H-1B visas, but that's what you chose to cover and the H-1B is the main legal immigration route for skilled workers. And there are numerous other subjects in the coverage as well, all of which are critical. If you really do think legal immigration may be good for the country, surely in your years of nightly coverage of the subject, you could have found a couple of minutes to say something nice. You say you consistently have called for an increase in legal immigration "when warranted." Except you've never actually mentioned when it's warranted. You are against family immigration and have called it "chain migration." You have attacked the employment-based green card system. You've targeted the most common work visas - the H-1B and L-1. You've attacked our asylum system as basically being the immigration strategy of choice for terrorists.



You've got your nightly bully pulpit, Mr. Dobbs, with several hours each week to say exactly what you think with the depth you need. Yet you've had not a single report praising any aspect of legal immigration. And while you say you support more legal immigration "when appropriate" your coverage indicates that "appropriate" is only when a certain place freezes over.

Submit "MY BADGE OF HONOR" to Facebook Submit "MY BADGE OF HONOR" to Twitter Submit "MY BADGE OF HONOR" to Google Submit "MY BADGE OF HONOR" to StumbleUpon Submit "MY BADGE OF HONOR" to Reddit Submit "MY BADGE OF HONOR" to Digg Submit "MY BADGE OF HONOR" to del.icio.us

Tags: None Add / Edit Tags

Comments

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
  1. YourFan's Avatar
    Greg, you're a hero!!
  2. AD's Avatar
    Lou Doggs knows the wheels of his show are coming off. Come next summer, if CIR is done, his ratings will go down as the regular rant does not make sense to Americans. No wonder he is building up his radio base so that he can move on to rant some where else. The end is near, He sees it

    Excellent rebuttal!
  3. Liz's Avatar
    Love it, you rock Mr. Siskind very well written.
  4. Vick's Avatar
    Greg, You ROCK!! Absolutely. Tell it like it is!!
  5. MP's Avatar
    Way to go Greg! Dou Loggs is a bigot and a hypocrite. Come on CNN, it's time to put his program out if it's misery.
  6. Another voice's Avatar
    Nice job Greg, this guy abuses his media outlet to miss-inform people on this important issue glad to see that you can set the record straight.
  7. Brad_sk's Avatar
    Wonderful job, Greg. All truth and nothing but truth.
  8. TLB's Avatar
    I used a macro to remove the stories in the "Stories criticizing legal immigration" section which deal with H-1B or asylum. That reduced the number in that section from 96 to 20. The remaining deal with H-2A and B, L-1, chain migration, and others. Most people aren't going to think of H-1B or H-2A/B as legal immigration but simply as "guest" programs. And, there doesn't appear to be anything directly opposing legal immigration in general.
  9. Greg Siskind's Avatar
    TLB - I'm sure you're the first of many Dobbs defenders who will post here so I'll make the point again. The H-1B is the major guest worker program for skilled workers. Most of the stories on H-1Bs discuss why they are taking jobs away from American workers. And that's the essence of the anti-legal-immigration argument when it comes to skilled worker immigration. If Dobbs was attacking the program because employers were violating the law, that's one thing. But that's not it. He's basically making a protectionist argument. That's his right, but then don't try and pretend you're pro-legal-immigration. Any argument that is based on taking jobs away from Americans when it comes to legal immigration categories is a protectionist one and should be properly labeled as anti-immigration. Whether you think that this is a fair and just argument to make is an entirely separate issue. I think people can come by that view honestly even if I disagree. But they should be honest in labeling their views. At least Tom Tancredo is honest in that regard, unlike Mr. Dobbs.
  10. USC's Avatar
    Greg,

    Congratulations! It's great to see someone pass up a TV appearance in order to stick to their principles.

    TLB,

    "chain migration"

    Immigrants are human beings and have families just like you and Lou. To borrow from Senator Menendez they are not paper clips!!
  11. JoeF's Avatar
    TLB:
    "Most people aren't going to think of H-1B or H-2A/B as legal immigration but simply as "guest" programs."

    Of course, that is only YOUR assertion. Most people that I have met, while on H1, never thought of me being here in a "guest" program. They consider the H1 part of immigration. And that's in fact what it is nowadays, a stepping stone towards immigration. Like it or not, THAT's the reality, not the idiocy and xenophobia of one loony TV "personality." Mr. Dobbs is a shame to CNN.

    Oh, and in case you wonder: I am an immigrant, a US citizen who originally came to this country on the H1. Guess that makes me one of the people Mr. Dobbs (and Mr. Tankredo) don't want here... Well, tough luck...
  12. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    Good job, Greg! You are right, Loony does not deserve your time.
  13. Jacqui Bucar's Avatar
    Greg, not only were you right on (as Dobbs obviously felt since he jumped to his own defense with such vigor) but Dobbs seems to ignore the plight of US farmers, the mainstay of our food economy. They are crying about rotting crops because there is no one to pick the lettuce etc. With rising food costs because of fuel increases, the fact that produce can't be picked because there are no workers to pick them seems to have gone right out of his little old head. It's not just the food industry. Resort areas (the tourist industry still important) can't get enough people to work in their resorts, restaurants, summer places etc. And wouldn't we all like to see what would happen if the dear Mr. Dobbs had to go the hospital only to discover there are no nurses.
  14. Jacqui Bucar's Avatar
    Greg, not only were you right on (as Dobbs obviously felt since he jumped to his own defense with such vigor) but Dobbs seems to ignore the plight of US farmers, the mainstay of our food economy. They are crying about rotting crops because there is no one to pick the lettuce etc. With rising food costs because of fuel increases, the fact that produce can't be picked because there are no workers to pick them seems to have gone right out of his little old head. It's not just the food industry. Resort areas (the tourist industry still important) can't get enough people to work in their resorts, restaurants, summer places etc. And wouldn't we all like to see what would happen if the dear Mr. Dobbs had to go the hospital only to discover there are no nurses.
  15. limbo's Avatar
    Excellent work as usual, Mr. Siskind, in your exposure of this guy as just an anti-immigrant windbag. The fact he felt compelled to try and rebut your research findings shows that you hit a raw nerve. Thanks again for keeping this guy honest.
  16. Edward's Avatar
    Good work on exposing Dobbs. It is a mystery to my why CNN allows him to continually damage the network's credibility. Can his ratings be THAT good.
  17. a's Avatar
    Dobbs' critics, including columnist James K. Glassman of the conservative American Enterprise Institute think tank, have accused him of inciting xenophobia.[25] Others have accused him of anti-Hispanic racism, a charge he denies[26] and one which he has said offends him deeply, as his wife, Debi, is Mexican American.[27]
  18. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    "It is a mystery to my why CNN allows him to continually damage the network's credibility. "

    Unfortumately, it's not a mystery at all. He has high ratings, on many days hihger than any other program on the network. There are a lot of people gullible enough to believe in this pile-o-cr@p.
  19. limbo's Avatar
    So now the challenge to Dobbs is to show us that he is not anti-legal-immigrant. He could do this by having one entire show that makes clear the benefits of legal immigration to the country. That should be a breeze since this great country was built through immigration. There are innumerable immigrants that he could profile to make the obvious case.

    Of course he will never do this as he would offend all the rednecks that watch his show and his ratings could suffer. Does this make him some kind of ratings demagogue?
  20. George Chell's Avatar
    Lou Dobbs has no problems with foreign actors displacing potential American actors becuase they happen to be mostly white. By keeping silent on this issue he is being very supportive. Of course, FAIR, CIS and other organizations have no problem with white immigration to this country. Overnight let more Bollywood actors from India show up in Hollywood, his tune might change. Then again, Dobbs is not very bright. As most of the Indian actors are light skinned and some near white, he may think that they are white and keep his mouth shut.
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Put Free Immigration Law Headlines On Your Website

Immigration Daily: the news source for legal professionals. Free! Join 35000+ readers Enter your email address here: