Archive for June 10th, 2008

This is a general area where members can chat, post ideas, comments, article links and anything else they feel is important that are not related to the specific articles posted daily on this site.

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The Washington Post

WASHINGTON — The FBI uses old technology and workers without enough training to do security checks on people applying for citizenship and other immigration benefits, a government audit found.

The problems have led to large backlogs in name checks and are affecting people wanting to naturalize, become legal residents or bringing in foreign workers for businesses, said the audit issued Monday by the Justice Department’s inspector general Glenn Fine.

“While the FBI is taking steps to address these deficiencies, the name check process can result in lengthy delays and the risk of inadequate information,” Fine said.

His audit praised the FBI’s work on fingerprint checks, saying it is mostly automated, uses an experienced, well-trained work force and can process millions of fingerprint requests accurately and on time.

The FBI’s biggest customer for name and fingerprint checks is the Department of Homeland’s Security’s Citizenship and Immigration Services division, which processes citizenship, legal resident and other immigration applications.

The FBI received 4 million name check requests in fiscal year 2007, more than 2 million from Citizenship and Immigration Services. It also processes about 21 million fingerprint checks a year, more than 3.2 million from the agency, Fine’s audit said.

The FBI completes about 86 percent of its name check requests within 60 days, but the remaining 14 percent can take from several months to more than a year. Some are pending more than three years, the auditor found. The FBI had 327,000 name checks pending as of this past March.

Fine criticized the FBI for using an outdated system that matches submitted names to the FBI’s index of names in its investigative files. The FBI missed opportunities to improve its “antiquated” systems by failing to raise its fees for name checks for 17 years, Fine said.

In a news release, the FBI emphasized other findings by Fine: it completed nearly 97 percent of all name checks submitted in the last five years and nearly 90 percent were completed within 120 days. Also, the FBI reduced the backlog by completing more name checks than it received in fiscal years 2004, 2005 and 2007.

The FBI blamed much of the backlog on a decision by Citizenship and Immigration Services to recheck 2.7 million names after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

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I have recieved a list of links from Alex Jones for all videos from the entire Bilderberg Conference: These vidoes have been loaded up to YouTube. Enjoy.

YOU TUBE VIDEO PAGE

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Examiner

WASHINGTON (Map, News) - The United Nations plans to examine Prince William County?s aggressive crackdown on illegal immigrants during a visit next week.

Jorge Bustamante, the United Nation?s special rapporteur on migrants? rights, plans to tour Manassas and Woodbridge, receive briefings on local enforcement measures, and attempt to meet with local officials.

He contacted immigrant leaders in the county two months ago to begin preparing for a visit, saying he was interested in the landmark nature of the county?s actions.

Special rapporteurs are tasked with reviewing human-rights issues of international concern to raise political pressure and shape public opinion, but cannot issue sanctions.

The international examination follows a December visit from the Virginia advisory panel of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission, which has yet to release a report on the county?s actions.

A Mexican native and Notre Dame University sociology professor, Bustamante has reviewed treatment of migrants in Guatemala and Mexico and toured the United States during a three-week review of American immigration policies last year.

County Chairman Corey Stewart said he is willing to meet with Bustamante, but sharply rebuked the international body for what he called an anti-American agenda.

?They?ve got a history of trying to embarrass the United States while turning a blind eye to the regimes that are actually not just committing human-rights abuses, but engaged in genocide,? Stewart said.

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I’ll bet anyone twenty bucks that Obama picks Bill Richardson to be his running mate over Hillary. Any takers?

Dallas News

Washington, DC — Barack Obama won ugly. He lost most of the final contests. He lost key states by landslide margins, even after everyone besides Hillary Rodham Clinton agreed the race was over. He struggled to connect with blue-collar whites.

And - less talked about - he revealed a serious vulnerability with the fastest-growing part of the electorate, losing 2-1 among Hispanics in some places.

‘The Hispanic community is one that cannot be taken for granted,’ said Rep. Henry Cuellar of Laredo, a Clinton supporter whose border district gave Mrs. Clinton more votes than any other in Texas’ primary in March.

Mr. Obama, he said, needs to do ‘extensive outreach’ to Hispanics, particularly Hispanic legislators, a key group the senator - like John Kerry in 2004 - has largely ignored.

Compared with Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Obama was an unknown quantity among Hispanics. There’s a history of black-brown tension, still very much on the minds of older Hispanic voters. Part of it is his own relatively light experience and contacts with Latinos.

Mr. Obama had never even seen the Texas-Mexico border until a few days before the primary.

‘I’ve been in Mexico when I was in college and was going to school in Southern California. I can’t entirely talk about it,’ he joked after surveying the border at Brownsville.

Granted, he avoided the sort of faux pas that befell Gerald Ford, who bit into a tamale - husk and all - during a stop in San Antonio in 1976. But a level of ignorance did show through when Mr. Obama referred to his own time in ‘San Antone,’ and when, after sampling a torta at a Sombrero Festival in Brownsville, he described the delicacy as a ‘tosta.’

Read more.

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Chron.com

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said Friday he had attended the funerals of too many Border Patrol agents killed in the line of duty to permit environmentalists to block construction of barriers and all-weather road along portions of Texas’ border with Mexico.

Chertoff, speaking during an interview with the editorial board of the Houston Chronicle, pitted the safety of Border Patrol agents against the efforts of environmentalists to stymie Bush administration plans to complete a border fence before leaving office in January. Some 670 miles of pedestrian fencing or vehicle barriers are planned along the 1,947-mile U.S.-Mexico boundary.

No time to waste

Chertoff, who has set aside some environmental restrictions to speed fence construction, said he didn’t want to ‘get enmeshed in endless litigation’ with environmentalists who he said opposed fencing, lighting and other improvements along the border that would help the Border Patrol seize undocumented immigrants, smugglers and drug traffickers.

‘I’ve gone to too many memorial services where agents were killed in rollover accidents pursuing smugglers because there wasn’t an all-weather road,’ Chertoff said. ‘I have to tell you in all honesty as between the sensitivity of an owl and having to look a family in the eye and say, `I’m sorry you lost a loved one because we can’t build a road.’ I’m going with protecting the family and protecting the Border Patrol agent.’

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AP

Washington, DC — President Bush has signed an executive order requiring contractors and others who do business with the federal government to make sure their employees can legally work in the U.S.

Bush signed the order Friday and the White House announced the order Monday.

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff and Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez planned an afternoon news conference to discuss the order and other ways the administration has stepped up its crackdown on illegal immigration.

The order says federal departments and agencies must require contractors to use an electronic system to verify that the workers are eligible to work in the U.S.

The order is aimed at cracking down on hiring of illegal immigrants. But people who overstayed visas or came to the country legally but do not have permission to work, such as some students or those awaiting work permits, also could be snagged with the system.

‘It is the policy of the executive branch to enforce fully the immigration laws of the United States, including the detection and removal of illegal aliens and the imposition of legal sanctions against employers that hire illegal aliens,’ in the executive order says.

Read more.

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