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The Value of U.S. Citizenship in an Open Border Society  

William L. Kovacs

February 2024

The Value of U.S. Citizenship in an Open Border Society   

The Southern border of the U.S. is a mess with millions illegally walking into the U.S.  and being welcomed with free food, shelter, healthcare, cash, a cell phone, transportation to the city of their choice, and, in a few locations, the illegals are provided legal services. While 8 out of 10 Americans believe the out-of-control southern border is an emergency or a major problem, the federal government publishes a pamphlet, “What Are the Benefits and Responsibilities of Citizenship,” hyping the value of U.S. citizenship. It also highlights Biden’s callous disregard for his constitutional oath to defend states from invasion.

Comparing the statements made by the federal government on the benefits of citizenship against the facts Americans experience illustrates the utter contempt the federal government has for its citizens.           

Citizens can vote. The first noted benefit of being a citizen is the right to vote. What does the right to vote mean anymore? Hillary Clinton, supported by the FBI, Department of Justice, and the entire mainstream news media, told voters the Russians, with a massive disinformation campaign, elected Donald Trump in 2016. The Russian misinformation lie hampered the entire four years of the Trump presidency.

In the 2020 election, many of Trump’s 75 million supporters believe Trump would have defeated Biden if the FBI and the media had not covered up the contents of Hunter Biden’s laptop. This belief is supported by polling. One in six voters would have changed their votes if they knew the laptop was authentic. The truth likely would have reelected Trump. Moreover, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear a case involving the Pennsylvania election law. In that case,  the Democrat Pennsylvania Supreme Court, by judicial fiat, amended the state’s election law in the middle of the 2020 election. While Pennsylvania’s twenty electoral votes would not have changed the Electoral College results, the Supreme Court missed an opportunity to clarify, for the 2024 election, the power of state courts to change election laws in the middle of an election.

Now Colorado, New Hampshire, and possibly twenty-nine other states want to ban Donald Trump from being on the 2024 presidential ballot. Will 2024 be another “free election?”

Every other year, our congressional representatives are elected by a rigged system called gerrymandering. The reelection rates for incumbents range from the low 90% to as high as 98%. Congressional districts are drawn to achieve partisan results. Voters are irrelevant. Statistically, there was more turnover in the former Soviet Politburo than in the U.S. Congress.

Now Biden wants some form of legalizing the illegals so they can vote. Imagine the integrity of future elections.

Decades of election controversies raise the question: Does voting matter?

Citizens get priority when petitioning to bring in family members. The processing time for an American citizen to get an immigration petition approved for a foreign spouse is 13 to 54 months. Contrast this lag time to the fact an entire family or group of terrorists coming illegally through the southern border can immediately enter the U.S.  and be safe from deportation after making payment to the cartels that drop the illegals off with the Border Patrol for processing.

Citizens benefit by having a U.S. passport. Citizens are free to travel throughout the U.S. While citizens have such a right, it is limited to lawful activity. Citizens committing crimes are arrested no matter where they are caught. Illegals, however, have many safe areas where they cannot be arrested, notwithstanding the crimes they have committed. These locations include schools, daycare centers, medical facilities, playgrounds for children, social service establishments, churches and demonstrations, parades, and in any Sanctuary city or state. Moreover, many American cities are paying for the bus and air transportation requested by illegals to travel to new cities. Most illegals travel throughout the U.S. without official identifying documents. If illegals do not need passports, identifying documents or even proof of vaccination from disease, why do Americans need these types of documents to prove who they are?

The U.S. government assists Americans outside the U.S. It’s unclear what assistance is given to Americans in trouble abroad. The most recent request for government assistance involves leaving thousands of Americans stranded in Afghanistan when the Biden administration disgracefully surrendered that country. The U.S. also left Americans behind in Iran as far back as 1979. More disgusting is the fact Americans are imprisoned throughout the world, and the U.S. does little to have them released. Recently, the U.S. government charged its citizens a fee to travel back to the U.S. when evacuated from a foreign country crisis. The New York Times wrote that Americans stranded abroad “feel completely abandoned.”

So much for the federal government helping Americans in foreign countries.

Citizens are eligible for federal jobs. The right to work for the federal government may be the one positive benefit of being a citizen that non-citizens do not have. A federal job is as close to nirvana as anyone can get. It requires little work, no creativity, and a talent to put words on pages, i.e., regulations, that no one can understand. Clean clothes are optional. After the pandemic, most federal workers “work” from home as the taxpayers pay billions for vacant office space.

There are 2 million of them. It sounds like a lot of jobs to apply for, but openings only happen when a government worker dies or retires. There is a long wait even for citizens. Today’s civil servants have de facto lifetime appointments. Federal employees are fired at the rate of 0.55%, a rate so low that deaths outnumber firings. Two significant agencies had zero firings—moreover, 99.5% of the 2 million federal employees rated “fully successful” or above. Of the 2 million bureaucrats, only 0.1% received unacceptable ratings.

In addition to job security, the Congressional Budget Office found that bureaucrats’ pay and benefits are 47% more than the combined pay and benefits in the private sector. A Cato Institute study put the number at 80% more than the private sector. The average federal worker receives $123,160 in pay and benefits compared to $69,901 in the private sector.

Sorry, American citizens, while you are welcome to apply for federal jobs, very few will ever be available unless you want to fight some undeclared war in a woke military.

 Citizens can freely exhibit patriotism. A strange benefit to tout when President Biden is using his 2024 campaign to attack 75 million voters he calls a” threat to democracy” because they are conservative and believe in “ Making America Great Again.”

The most ironic asserted benefit is that all citizens are subject to the same tax code. This statement is perhaps the most cynical statement ever made by the federal government. Citizens do not view paying taxes as a benefit of citizenship. Moreover, the illegal immigrants do not pay taxes. In fact, most exist on government grants, which the taxpayer pays for. Finally, if paying taxes is such a great benefit, why does Hunter Biden not pay taxes on his millions of laundered monies?

It’s no wonder that in 1958, almost seventy-five percent of Americans trusted the government. In 2022, only 20% of Americans trust government. The Biden administration treats citizens as commodities that pay taxes. As for the benefits of citizenship, if a citizen is in desperate need of federal help, they need to throw away all their identifying documents and enter the Southern border along with the other illegal immigrants. Only then will the federal, state, and local governments help.

William L. Kovacs has served as senior vice president for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, chief counsel to a congressional committee, chairman of a state environmental board, and a partner in law D.C. law firms. His book Reform the Kakistocracy is the winner of the 2021 Independent Press Award for Political/Social Change. He can be contacted at [email protected]

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  • Uncle Joe, You Have Diminished the Value of My Citizenship

Uncle Joe, You Have Diminished the Value of My Citizenship

William L. Kovacs

November 2021

Uncle Joe, You Have Diminished the Value of My Citizenship

Dear Uncle Joe:

Mr. President, while you are not my uncle Joe, we did grow up in the same neighborhood in Scranton. I know Scranton’s values well. Unfortunately, you lost those values many years ago.

You remind me of my old, crazy uncle Timmy. He was an embarrassment to us all. He was a danger on the streets, touching everyone who walked near him. And certainly, we never let him walk down the street to the popcorn vendor with a monkey.

Occasionally, we had to be very direct so he understood the seriousness of what he was doing. Unfortunately, this is one of those times your American family must deliver you a straightforward message – your actions are diminishing the value of American citizenship. Let me explain.

The government you “manage” identifies the benefits of citizenship, specifically: protection from deportation, easier entry, and reentry into the U.S., travel without restriction in the states, the right to pay taxes and receive the same tax benefits as other Americans, the right to work for the federal government and receive government subsidies and the right to vote.

Before you assumed “management” of the U.S., these benefits were of great value. They generated patriotism, love of country, and respect for the rule of law. Your management style is so disrespectful to citizens, you treat us as commodities that send money to the government for the horror of watching the nation wither into a chaotic, authoritarian state.

And when you rudely turn your back and walk out of the room when reporters ask you simple questions, you act exactly like my crazy uncle. Worse, turning your back is an insult to us citizens. A good mother in Scranton should have told you it is not polite.

Perhaps your craziest decision is opening the southern border for anyone to freely enter the country. You have inflicted more crime on our cities. You are forcing local governments to care for the illegal, mostly unvaccinated, masses. This drains resources needed for schools, police, and health care. Worse, it is a violation of your oath to defend the country. You may not remember it but you were on television on January 20, 2021 and repeated the oath in front of millions of us. Many Americans thought you understood what you were swearing to?

No one knows why you opened the border; you may truly believe drug cartels; sex traffickers and the slave trade are capitalist enterprises. Please note it is not the type of business activity most parents want in their neighborhoods.

Also, no one understands why you stopped building the southern border wall after we paid for it? Obviously, you like walls since you ordered the American people to build a huge wall around your beach house. I am assuming it is your modesty when swimming nude. Believe me, uncle Joe, no one will look, we would all be too embarrassed for you.

If one of the benefits of citizenship is the ease of entry and exit from our country, you have made it far easier to enter and exit for illegals than citizens. Almost two million illegal immigrants from 75 countries walked across the southern border into the U.S. this year. None were required to prove they had been vaccinated or tested for Covid-19. At the same time,  citizens, returning from a foreign country, could not reenter the U.S. without proof of “a negative COVID-19 test, taken within three (3) calendar days of departure, or proof of recovery from the virus within the last 90 days.”

Another of the mentioned benefits of citizenship is free to travel throughout the U.S. While citizens have such a right, it is limited to lawful activity. Citizens committing crimes are arrested, no matter where they are caught.  Illegals, however, under your new order, have many safe areas where they cannot be arrested. These locations include schools, including daycare centers, medical facilities, playgrounds for children, social service establishments, churches and demonstrations, and parades. You are giving those coming to the U.S. illegally, more protection than given Americans. That doesn’t seem fair, crazy uncle Joe?

And now, you want to give illegals who were separated from their children when detained at the border, $450,000 per person, as damages for the temporary separation. What about our homeless and/or disabled veterans?  Are they less valuable than illegals because they fought to defend the U.S.?

The most ironic passage in one pamphlet is the discussion which notes all citizens have the same tax benefits as other Americans. I do not know many Americans who believe paying taxes and having the same tax deductions as other Americans is a benefit. First of all, most Americans do not have the same tax benefits as the super-wealthy. Few Americans can take advantage of carried interest tax avoidance scheme for hedge fund managers or the $12 million estate tax exemption or trillions that can escape taxation forever, with a stepped-up basis for capital gains at death. You have such benefits, but very few Scrantonians have those benefits. You should nominate the brochure’s writer for inclusion in Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum. There will be a hefty referral fee for Hunter, and the author will live forever as the dumbest person in the world.

The right to work for the federal government may be the one positive benefit of being a citizen that non-citizens cannot have. It is as close to nirvana as anyone can get. It requires little work, no creativity, and a talent to write what no one can understand. Clean clothes are not required and for the last 18 months, they did not even have to appear in an office. There are 2.8 million of them. Sounds like a lot of jobs to apply for, but openings only happen when a government worker dies or retires. There is a long wait even for citizens.

Fortunately, the illegals know you are trying to get rid of Trump’s Public Charge requirement. If you are successful with your Build Back Better legislation, the illegals will receive free community college, housing, and food subsidies. Since federal subsidies never go away, uncle Joe, the illegals may just get benefits rivaling a federal job without the need to show up for work.

The big benefit of being a citizen is the sacred right to vote. What does the right to vote to mean anymore? Hillary Clinton and the entire mainstream news media told us the Russians, with a massive disinformation campaign, elected Donald Trump in 2016. Trump and his 75 million supporters tell us that millions of illegal ballots, fake news, and the suppression of news like the contents of Hunter’s laptop, elected you in 2020.

In the 2000 election, George W. Bush was elected by the U.S. Supreme Court. Every other year our congressional representatives are elected by a rigged system called gerrymandering. The reelection rates for incumbents range from the low 90% to as high as 98%. Congressional districts are drawn for winners, not losers. Seriously, there was more turnover in the old Soviet Politburo than in Congress.

On its face, having the right to vote is a big deal. It seems to be a distinguishing right for which citizenship is needed. But nothing is more political than voting. Whoever controls the voting process wins. The Democrats are pushing the 800 page, “For the People Act.” If enacted it would nationalize voting. Whoever controls the DC swamp, controls voting in the nation. The bill would require every state to allow voting by mail, mandate online, and same-day voter registration. It effectively eliminates voter-identification requirements by requiring non-registered “voters” to sign a statement attesting to their identity. The bill would mandate drop-off boxes for mail-in ballots, and allow voters to designate another person to drop off their ballots.

Uncle Joe, the “For the People Act: reminds me of the first time, at age 6, I accompanied my uncle Timmy to a Scranton polling place. Afterward, I asked him who will win. He told me the Democrats since they vote early and often so the dead are always well represented.

My message to the illegal immigrants is, do not get discouraged, uncle Joe will soon have you casting ballots for Democrats. As for my vote, it is becoming less and less valuable.

William L. Kovacs, author of Reform the Kakistocracy: Rule by the Least Able or Least Principled Citizens, Winner of the 2021 Independent Press Award for Social/Political Change. Former senior vice president, U.S. Chamber of Commerce.