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(Reason Magazine)   What part of legal immigration consisting of a thirty point flowchart depending on nationality, level of income, family status, and ability of employer to grease wheels do you not understand?   (reason.com) divider line 105
    More: Interesting, minimum wage law, Wesley Crusher, PPACA, protectionist, Rachel Maddow, Ralph Macchio, master status, travelers  
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2252 clicks; posted to Politics » on 01 Feb 2013 at 12:00 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-02-01 09:59:31 AM  
The chart's pretty good. The only thing it doesn't address is the thousands of dollars it typically costs to go through the process.
 
2013-02-01 10:01:47 AM  
Luckily for most of us, the immigration process used to be "show up at Ellis Island and not have tuberculosis or be an anarchist".
 
2013-02-01 10:47:59 AM  

BunkoSquad: Luckily for most of us, the immigration process used to be "show up at Ellis Island and not have tuberculosis or be an anarchist".


"And be prepared to change your family name to whatever the immigration officer thinks is easiest to spell."
 
2013-02-01 11:11:01 AM  

God Is My Co-Pirate: BunkoSquad: Luckily for most of us, the immigration process used to be "show up at Ellis Island and not have tuberculosis or be an anarchist".

"And be prepared to change your family name to whatever the immigration officer thinks is easiest to spell."


I've always assumed that's how there came to be so many variations of the same last name, such as use of a c versus use of a k, but has anyone actually ever studied that?
 
2013-02-01 11:20:52 AM  
If you give us thousands of dollars, for years, and spend well over a decade working on it, you TOO can become a citizen!

/broke as hell system
 
2013-02-01 11:25:17 AM  
We should just let anybody be a citizen.  Open up our elections to an anonymous vote for the whole Internet.  What could possibly go wrong?

/ Other than voting, what all can a Citizen do that a green card holder can't?
 
2013-02-01 11:30:06 AM  
And people wonder why we have so many illegal immigrants.  Perhaps if the process wasn't so expensive and convoluted, we'd have more legal immigrants.
 
2013-02-01 11:31:58 AM  
And that chart doesn't even  address the asylum and refugee process, which is an entire other shebang.
 
2013-02-01 11:37:20 AM  

slayer199: And people wonder why we have so many illegal immigrants.  Perhaps if the process wasn't so expensive and convoluted, we'd have more legal immigrants.


Even if you significantly streamline the process and reduce the costs, there are still limits on the total number of people allowed to immigrate in a year.  You'd still have illegal immigration.
 
2013-02-01 11:39:53 AM  
I'm not interested in any policies that can't be explained on a bumper sticker. Complex problems always have simple solutions.

/Drill Baby Drill!
//Taxed Enough Already!
///I'll keep my God and guns, you can keep your change!
 
2013-02-01 11:46:52 AM  

slayer199: And people wonder why we have so many illegal immigrants.  Perhaps if the process wasn't so expensive and convoluted, we'd have more legal immigrants.


If we legalized everything, crime rates would drop dramatically!
 
2013-02-01 11:52:38 AM  

serial_crusher: slayer199: And people wonder why we have so many illegal immigrants.  Perhaps if the process wasn't so expensive and convoluted, we'd have more legal immigrants.

If we legalized everything, crime rates would drop dramatically!


To quote the West Wing, in a free country you don't need a reason to make something legal. You need a reason to make something illegal.
 
2013-02-01 11:57:10 AM  
I lost you at "thirty point".
 
2013-02-01 12:08:31 PM  

serial_crusher: We should just let anybody be a citizen.  Open up our elections to an anonymous vote for the whole Internet.  What could possibly go wrong?

/ Other than voting, what all can a Citizen do that a green card holder can't?


Voting is the big one; jury duty can be too, but that depends on the jurisdiction. Other than that, it's mostly about jobs requiring security clearances.

Open borders are not the answer. Any nation has a right, and legitimate need, to control who comes in.
 
2013-02-01 12:12:17 PM  
I love me some Terry Colon illustrations. Who here remembers suck.com?
 
2013-02-01 12:12:53 PM  

Millennium: serial_crusher: We should just let anybody be a citizen.  Open up our elections to an anonymous vote for the whole Internet.  What could possibly go wrong?

/ Other than voting, what all can a Citizen do that a green card holder can't?

Voting is the big one; jury duty can be too, but that depends on the jurisdiction. Other than that, it's mostly about jobs requiring security clearances.

Open borders are not the answer. Any nation has a right, and legitimate need, to control who comes in.


There's a damn sight between open borders and the maze an immigrant has to navigate / pay through the nose for now.

Bring me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses.
But if you ain't the spouse, child, or parent of a current citizen, or insanely rich of famous, be prepared to wait at least 5 - 7 years.
 
2013-02-01 12:16:42 PM  

serial_crusher: / Other than voting, what all can a Citizen do that a green card holder can't?


Get due process?  I hear immigration courts can be a black hole even for legal immigrants.
 
2013-02-01 12:26:28 PM  
There's a deeper issue here about the inequality of resources among the citizenship seekers.  Democrats won't admit to thinking what I'm going to write next and Republicans get close to saying it, but never say it clearly - both of them are on the same page though.

We (the elected people how set the rules) do not want poor uneducated people to join the party.  They are a drag on the system as a whole.  We (again - politicos) want rich educated people who will enhance our economny and more importantly - pay lots and lots of taxes.  The immigration system/process as it is today, is aimed at weeding out all non-hackers from our beloved core (Americuh).  Secretly, both  democrats and republicans want it to stay that way.  They are all to well versed in what happens when you let your country become a refugee camp (look at several European models).

Long ago we needed the people - not just for the work they provided, but the taxes we could collect from them. Back in the Ellis Island days everybody paid on everything - there was no progressive tax system. The more people you had in your country living life and spending money, the more the government could grow and be misused by the upper class.  It was a nice little racket until the country started to fill up...
 
2013-02-01 12:28:31 PM  

Karac: There's a damn sight between open borders and the maze an immigrant has to navigate / pay through the nose for now.


There is, but no one is advocating anything in that spectrum: it's either open borders or something only trivially different from open borders, or else lockdown.

Bring me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses.

Case in point.
 
2013-02-01 12:29:00 PM  

GAT_00: ven if you significantly streamline the process and reduce the costs, there are still limits on the total number of people allowed to immigrate in a year. You'd still have illegal immigration.


Point is, there shouldn't be such limitations on immigration.  I have no issue with people coming here to work, pay taxes, and be a productive member of our country.  Nobody else should either.  Reducing the barriers to legal immigration would reduce illegal immigration.
 
2013-02-01 12:29:41 PM  

God Is My Co-Pirate: BunkoSquad: Luckily for most of us, the immigration process used to be "show up at Ellis Island and not have tuberculosis or be an anarchist".

"And be prepared to change your family name to whatever the immigration officer thinks is easiest to spell."


In my case I think they made it more difficult.

On the plus side, if I see someone with the same last name I know I'm related to them.
 
2013-02-01 12:32:42 PM  

serial_crusher: / Other than voting, what all can a Citizen do that a green card holder can't?


Jury Duty, getting drafted, working at or having access without special permission to some Federal Government facilities comes to mind.
 
2013-02-01 12:32:53 PM  
i.imgur.com

"Is there some reason a robot made of wax can't take a nap standing up in the middle of a bunch ofwax robots? Or does that *confuse* you?"
 
2013-02-01 12:33:02 PM  

DamnYankees: serial_crusher: slayer199: And people wonder why we have so many illegal immigrants.  Perhaps if the process wasn't so expensive and convoluted, we'd have more legal immigrants.

If we legalized everything, crime rates would drop dramatically!

To quote the West Wing, in a free country you don't need a reason to make something legal. You need a reason to make something illegal.


"we've got enough huddled masses for now, kthx?  Can you send us your talented scientists and professional athletes instead?"  isn't a good enough reason?
 
2013-02-01 12:36:38 PM  

slayer199: GAT_00: ven if you significantly streamline the process and reduce the costs, there are still limits on the total number of people allowed to immigrate in a year. You'd still have illegal immigration.

Point is, there shouldn't be such limitations on immigration.  I have no issue with people coming here to work, pay taxes, and be a productive member of our country.  Nobody else should either.  Reducing the barriers to legal immigration would reduce illegal immigration.


And I have no problem with them coming here either.  But even if we make it far easier, the people who want to immigrate most tend to have little to nothing to their name, and many spend everything they have just getting here.  There is no guarantee that they are literate.  So even easy to read, simple forms, with low costs, won't do anything to help the people who want to come here the most.  That's a core problem with stopping illegal immigration.
 
2013-02-01 12:39:35 PM  
My wife came here on a fiancee visa in November, 2010. We started the process about 6 months before that. We're still filing paperwork and paying fees to this day. It should be almost over... I think there will be one more interview, and then she'll have permanent resident status. To date I think we've paid over ~$3000 in fees and whatnot. This is without a lawyer, which would easily double the cost. If she wanted to become a citizen, which she doesn't, I really don't even know how much longer or how much more expensive it would be.

Oh, and she's not even from one of those brown countries either. You could probably double the time involved and likelihood that things would go pear-shapped if that were the case.
 
2013-02-01 12:42:28 PM  

soup: If she wanted to become a citizen, which she doesn't, I really don't even know how much longer or how much more expensive it would be.


A friend of mine is from Spain.  She's been here as a student and then working since 2000, moving from student visas to her husband sponsoring her to work visas.  She became a full citizen last year.  I should ask sometime just how much that cost.
 
2013-02-01 12:52:40 PM  
I just want to say, "God Help You" if during that 3-14 year process, your first and last name get switched at any point and no one tells you.

/Yes there is a CSB
//No I'm not going to share
 
2013-02-01 12:54:59 PM  
oldass31: I just want to say, "God Help You" if during that 3-14 year process, your first and last name get switched at any point and no one tells you catches it. FTFM
 
2013-02-01 01:03:46 PM  
You know, I'm not saying that that chart is a lie, but when you boil down a complicated process to a snarky cartoon, you'll excuse me if I assume there is a hell of a lot missing.

/favors a path to citizenship
 
2013-02-01 01:06:06 PM  

soup: My wife came here on a fiancee visa in November, 2010. We started the process about 6 months before that. We're still filing paperwork and paying fees to this day. It should be almost over... I think there will be one more interview, and then she'll have permanent resident status. To date I think we've paid over ~$3000 in fees and whatnot. This is without a lawyer, which would easily double the cost. If she wanted to become a citizen, which she doesn't, I really don't even know how much longer or how much more expensive it would be.

Oh, and she's not even from one of those brown countries either. You could probably double the time involved and likelihood that things would go pear-shapped if that were the case.


Went through the process with my wife.  Good god was that a stressful time, with constant delays, no communication, being told one thing and then being asked to do another.  Without visajourney, I would have gone mad.

We're slowly working on getting her ready for citizenship, just so we don't have to go through the process again at the 10 year renewal, and to make it easier for her to travel.  Its a lot easier to travel on a US passport than just about any other.
 
2013-02-01 01:06:54 PM  

GAT_00: God Is My Co-Pirate: BunkoSquad: Luckily for most of us, the immigration process used to be "show up at Ellis Island and not have tuberculosis or be an anarchist".

"And be prepared to change your family name to whatever the immigration officer thinks is easiest to spell."

I've always assumed that's how there came to be so many variations of the same last name, such as use of a c versus use of a k, but has anyone actually ever studied that?


For my family name, we have variations in the US because of spending many years as illiterate farmers here.  There are 3 distinct spellings, which were generated after immigrating in 1786, of my last name in the US
 
2013-02-01 01:08:14 PM  

oldass31: I just want to say, "God Help You" if during that 3-14 year process, your first and last name get switched at any point and no one tells you.

/Yes there is a CSB
//No I'm not going to share


I'm curious.  Are you better using American standards of putting your given name before your family name, instead of the other way around, or should you just stick with whatever the predominant standard is in your country of origin?  (I'm assuming that was involved in your CSB?)

Better yet, just change your name to John John or something.

/ I also noticed when I went to Nicaragua that a lot of the natives have first names that sound like Caucasian last names (and last names that sound like Hispanic last names).  Johnson Hernandez, Robinson Lopez, that sort of thing.  Not sure what that's about.  Maybe they just like adding "son" at the end of regular white people names.
 
2013-02-01 01:09:13 PM  
The flow chart omits the multitudes of forms that need to be filled out with no easy to reference guide to determine which forms you will need and so it makes it look much simpler than it is.
 
2013-02-01 01:10:15 PM  
The US immigration laws are completely convoluted and full of delays.

A Canadian friend fell in love with an American, luckily they researched first and went the fiancee visa route instead of getting married first.

Her application got delayed and lost. She spent hours calling immigration, going from one pre-recorded message to another, until she finally got a human being who told her that  the government website posted the wrong mailing address for her visa and phone number for her to call.  Then after moving to the US and getting married waited almost a year to get her green card.

Another is an Aussie friend of mine and her American Hubby. Despite being married for almost 30 years , having 3 American babies on US soil, and previously living in the US for a decade she cannot have both US and Aussie citizenship (but her kids can because they are native-born). They moved back to Australia for about 15 years and now want to move back to the US because hubby got a job with the US army. To renew her Green card to move back to the US has been a nightmare. She flew into the US for her interview, only to be told that her interview got cancelled because her application was "still in transit", she thankfully got approved for a 3 month visitor visa and is hoping to get her interview rescheduled for sometime soon. WTF?

I'm dealing with Canadian immigration right now, while that hasn't been as bad, it was still a nightmare.

It takes a fair bit of time and money for hubby and I to gather the materials to "prove" that we are a real couple. Pictures, letters of recommendation, love letters to each other, having a wedding with enough pomp and circumstance so it can be real, background checks, immigration photos, fingerprinting, medical exams and drug tests, etc. On top of a $500 processing fee.
 
2013-02-01 01:11:13 PM  
The flowchart logic isn't really that bad, what is wrong is the wait times.  It should take a couple weeks to navigate through that entire bureaucratic process, tops.  Maybe a couple years with a green card before you become a citizen, but otherwise why all the delays.  Immigration drives this country, we *must* have continual population growth or the economy is going in the crapper.
 
2013-02-01 01:18:16 PM  

soup: My wife came here on a fiancee visa in November, 2010. We started the process about 6 months before that. We're still filing paperwork and paying fees to this day. It should be almost over... I think there will be one more interview, and then she'll have permanent resident status. To date I think we've paid over ~$3000 in fees and whatnot. This is without a lawyer, which would easily double the cost. If she wanted to become a citizen, which she doesn't, I really don't even know how much longer or how much more expensive it would be.

Oh, and she's not even from one of those brown countries either. You could probably double the time involved and likelihood that things would go pear-shapped if that were the case.


My Aussie friend and her American hubby looked into a lawyer to help with the immigration process. The cost was 20k with an 8k monthly retainer fee!

My Canadian Immigration lawyer: 2k if you paid upfront, 2.5k if you paid in increments.

/Canadian lawyer: Roy Kellog, he's made his process much easier.
 
2013-02-01 01:25:00 PM  
shortymac:

My Aussie friend and her American hubby looked into a lawyer to help with the immigration process. The cost was 20k with an 8k monthly retainer fee!

My Canadian Immigration lawyer: 2k if you paid upfront, 2.5k if you paid in increments.

/Canadian lawyer: Roy Kellog, he's made his process much easier.


Is there some sort of unconventional thing going on with their marriage? Massive age gap/live at separate addresses/speak different languages/etc? Because that seems waaay off the upper end for a straightforward marriage visa.
 
2013-02-01 01:29:28 PM  

slayer199: And people wonder why we have so many illegal immigrants.  Perhaps if the process wasn't so expensive and convoluted, we'd have more legal immigrants.


Why would we want more legal immigrants? The country already has to absorb over a million per year.
 
2013-02-01 01:30:40 PM  

serial_crusher: We should just let anybody be a citizen.  Open up our elections to an anonymous vote for the whole Internet.  What could possibly go wrong?


I, for one, welcome President Weedlord Bonerhitler.
 
2013-02-01 01:34:01 PM  

blahpers: serial_crusher: We should just let anybody be a citizen.  Open up our elections to an anonymous vote for the whole Internet.  What could possibly go wrong?

I, for one, welcome President Weedlord Bonerhitler.


President moot
 
2013-02-01 01:36:34 PM  

Uranus Is Huge!: blahpers: serial_crusher: We should just let anybody be a citizen.  Open up our elections to an anonymous vote for the whole Internet.  What could possibly go wrong?

I, for one, welcome President Weedlord Bonerhitler.

President moot


Vote Green Carbon Rod. In Rod We Trust!
 
2013-02-01 01:38:53 PM  

bradkanus: It was a nice little racket until the country started to fill up...


When you can drive 8 hours on a highway in some states and not see a house, I'm gonna need a citation for the "fill up" part. More people live in the NYC area than the Mountain West time zone.

// unless you mean "fill up" the same way as dribbling a bit into a crock-pot would be "filling up"
// because yes, we have ~320 million people now, compared with ~300 million in 2000
 
2013-02-01 01:43:12 PM  

Dr Dreidel: bradkanus: It was a nice little racket until the country started to fill up...

When you can drive 8 hours on a highway in some states and not see a house, I'm gonna need a citation for the "fill up" part. More people live in the NYC area than the Mountain West time zone.

// unless you mean "fill up" the same way as dribbling a bit into a crock-pot would be "filling up"
// because yes, we have ~320 million people now, compared with ~300 million in 2000


But immigrants have stopped congregating in the rural areas and have shifted to concentrating on the urban centers for near a century.  The amount of rural space is immaterial.  The key is on the ability of our urban centers to absorb more people.
 
2013-02-01 01:44:34 PM  

GAT_00: slayer199: GAT_00: ven if you significantly streamline the process and reduce the costs, there are still limits on the total number of people allowed to immigrate in a year. You'd still have illegal immigration.

Point is, there shouldn't be such limitations on immigration.  I have no issue with people coming here to work, pay taxes, and be a productive member of our country.  Nobody else should either.  Reducing the barriers to legal immigration would reduce illegal immigration.

And I have no problem with them coming here either.  But even if we make it far easier, the people who want to immigrate most tend to have little to nothing to their name, and many spend everything they have just getting here.  There is no guarantee that they are literate.  So even easy to read, simple forms, with low costs, won't do anything to help the people who want to come here the most.  That's a core problem with stopping illegal immigration.


Like murder, we'll NEVER be able to completely get rid of illegal immigration, but we can DRASTICALLY reduce its occurance and impact by reforming the current system as it is, and I think that's something you and I can actually agree on.

/did Hell freeze over?
 
2013-02-01 01:47:33 PM  
If you're having problems with immigration paperwork taking too long, go to your congress person and ask them to inquire on your behalf (you can do this online).  You'd be surprised how fast congressional inquiries get answered.
 
2013-02-01 01:49:24 PM  

slayer199: And people wonder why we have so many illegal immigrants.  Perhaps if the process wasn't so expensive and convoluted, we'd have more legal immigrants.


's not often I agree with a Randhole, but he's right.  If you make the system more accessible, you'll have less people trying to avoid it.

Of course you'd still have illegal immigration, but this'd cut some of it down a bit.  450,000 is still less than 500,000

Uranus Is Huge!: I'm not interested in any policies that can't be explained on a bumper sticker. Complex problems always have simple solutions.


That are usually wrong.


slayer199: GAT_00: ven if you significantly streamline the process and reduce the costs, there are still limits on the total number of people allowed to immigrate in a year. You'd still have illegal immigration.

Point is, there shouldn't be such limitations on immigration.  I have no issue with people coming here to work, pay taxes, and be a productive member of our country.  Nobody else should either.  Reducing the barriers to legal immigration would reduce illegal immigration.


And here's where I'll disagree with you.  There HAS to be a limit, if only for the fact that the lands we have can only support so many people at once.

/Notice I said "support" and not "hold".  We're not talking simple square/cubic mileage of space here;  we're talking food, water, and other resources.
 
2013-02-01 01:50:39 PM  

Rootus: The flowchart logic isn't really that bad, what is wrong is the wait times.  It should take a couple weeks to navigate through that entire bureaucratic process, tops.  Maybe a couple years with a green card before you become a citizen, but otherwise why all the delays.  Immigration drives this country, we *must* have continual population growth or the economy is going in the crapper.


You send in paperwork to one office. They find one missing dot above an I and reject it. They mail it back to you, you fix it, send it back in. Every step involves 2-3 weeks for the post office, and then a leisurely stroll through some deskjockey's in box - which can take months. And we're not talking just a birth certificate and a simple 'can I please come in, kind sir' form either. Fingerprints, birth certificate, proof of citizenship in home country, criminal background check, medical check, passports - all kinds of shiat with plenty of room for typos. And at every step, fees. And not little 'renew your license at the DMV' fees either - we're talking hundreds to thousands of dollars.

Then you go to the consulate in your nation of origin for an interview (which is annoying if you were already here on a student visa for example). Oh hell, just read this. No wonder people decided to just pay a smuggler a few hundred up front and take a ride in a shipping container or box van.
 
2013-02-01 01:56:57 PM  

Target Builder: shortymac:

My Aussie friend and her American hubby looked into a lawyer to help with the immigration process. The cost was 20k with an 8k monthly retainer fee!

My Canadian Immigration lawyer: 2k if you paid upfront, 2.5k if you paid in increments.

/Canadian lawyer: Roy Kellog, he's made his process much easier.

Is there some sort of unconventional thing going on with their marriage? Massive age gap/live at separate addresses/speak different languages/etc? Because that seems waaay off the upper end for a straightforward marriage visa.


Nope, also this isn't for a marriage visa it's a renewal for her perm res after living together in Australia for about 15 years.

Basically they got married about 30 years ago in Australia, lived in the US for about 15 years (80s/90s), moved back to Australia for 15 years. They now want to live in the US again because Hubby got a job with the US army (he's a SAP consultant). Her perm res lapsed while living in Australia.

They separated for a year in Australia but didn't divorce so that might be another complicating factor.

She can't be a dual citizen as an Aussie which is why she has to keep playing the prem res game.
 
2013-02-01 01:57:44 PM  

friday13: And here's where I'll disagree with you.  There HAS to be a limit, if only for the fact that the lands we have can only support so many people at once.


And here's where I'll disagree with you.

There's been this Malthusian boogeyman of "peak population" since before the Industrial Revolution, yet the people who worry the most about it are usually the ones who miss the innovations that have taken place that have allowed us to support a greater population of people and make our society better off.

Some of our greatest innovations have come from immigrants who might not have made their breakthroughs had they not emmigrated to the United States.

Besides, what should that limit be, and how could you possibly quantify it using any sort of remotely objective standard?
 
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