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Ritmo permanent solution in search of a problem

13 July 2007

Allen Essex writes in the The Valley Morning Star that a 1000 “bed” (should that be “convict”) expansion is planned for Ritmo:


RAYMONDVILLE — Willacy County officials have taken preliminary steps to build a 1,000-bed expansion to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention center.

Planning for three permanent buildings is in the works, rather than additional Kevlar dome tent-type structures that are being used now, Sheriff Larry Spence said.

They’ve been having meetings with Homeland Security and ICE,” the sheriff said. “They’re wanting to expand. They’re waiting (for federal approval). At least they’re laying the groundwork for it.”

When the first phase of the federal detention enter was opened in August 2006, federal officials said it was designed to hold 500 illegal immigrants.

Carl Stuart, spokesman for Management and Training Corp., the company that operates the Willacy detention center under a contract with ICE, said he could not comment on future plans at the center without clearance from federal officials.

Great… so the “temporary” facility at Raymondville is now a permanent institution. Of course, now there’s an economic incentive to maintain a steady supply… i.e., keep “illegals” illegal, so there’s a reason to lock em up.

“Identity Theft” seems to be the newest one. Stace Medellín (Dos Centavos) wonders

Who stole the identities? They’re going around accusing people who just want to work of “ID theft,” but one has to realize that all they did was purchase the documents. The document sellers are the ones that actually stole the identities. ICE is going after the wrong people, yet, again! It’s like the drug trade–we go after users, instead of the source. And instead of providing help to users, we punish them. So goes with the immigrant community: Instead of ensuring a path to legalization without a backlog at CIS, we simply accuse them of something and knock them off the line.

What brought the question to Stace’s mind, was another immigrant roundup at Swift Meat Packing plants. With a nice, permanent facility, we can’t do that… not enough units of flesh to fill the beds that need to be rented out.

Incidentally, and I don’t know if it is related, but Swift has been sold to the Brazilian firm JBS S.A. So, meat packing, the U.S. innovation that built the Middle West, and has been the traditional employer of immigrants since the beginning (remember “The Jungle“?) is now dominated by the Brazilians. Geeze, the ultimate beneficiaries of the exploited labor won’t even be in the U.S.

I wonder if the meat-packing executives got nervous about the nativist calls for prosecuting the employers of “illegal immigrants.”

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