Arab activists ask for Temporary Protected Status for Syrians!

Here we go again.   A couple of decades ago we granted Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to Salvadorans, Hondurans and Liberians.  More recently it was granted to Haitians, but as Mark Krikorian at the Center for Immigration Studies famously said in 1999—there is nothing quite so permanent as temporary protected status.

Readers this is one more back channel way for foreign nationals to stay in the US beyond the limits of the visas that got them here in the first place.  A “crisis” happens at home and the US government says, oh, poor thing, we can’t send you back to a country in crisis.  So the alien stays and stays and stays (with a right to work) and eventually buys a home or a business and then the politicians say, we must extend TPS because heck they are all settled in!

The only thing these immigrants can’t do is vote (but you can bet they are figuring out how to do that too!).

Now we have James Zogby of the Arab American Institute (AAI) petitioning Obama to give TPS status to Syrians.   Well, using his logic Egyptians should stay, and Libyans, and Iranians, and Yeminis, and the list goes on.

Here is what AAI is reporting at its website:

Yesterday, the Arab American Institute, in a formal request to the Obama administration, asked for Temporary Protected Status privileges to be extended to Syrian citizens currently residing in the United States. Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is a procedure by which the Secretary of Homeland Security may provide temporary asylum to individuals who are in America and who cannot safely return to their home countries.

As the Syrian uprising nears its 10th month, the situation on the ground has grown increasingly dangerous for average Syrian citizens. Questions continue about the safety of Syrian nationals upon their return home from visits to the U.S. As a result, many Syrians currently in the U.S. are deeply concerned for their personal safety and the safety of their families if they return home.

If granted, TPS will allow Syrian citizens who are currently here – mostly as students and tourists – to stay in the U.S. until they can safely return home. It does not contribute to granting an immigrant permanent residence, and reverts the beneficiary to his or her previous immigration status as soon as the temporary protection ends.   [But, ahhhhhhh! it never ends!–ed]

Those original nearly 200,000 Salvadorans that live in the DC, Maryland and Virginia area have been here for two decades (growing their population) and are now looking for an extension of TPS AGAIN this March—a topic which I’ve extensively covered at Potomac Tea Party Report (here is one recent post).  Oh, and by the way, during their TPS they can figure out just how to make permanent asylum claims (or find a US citizen to marry!).

Maine the welfare magnet, what happens when the system crashes?

I wrote this post in 2009—Somali Migration to Maine: it’s the welfare magnet, stupid!   On some days, like yesterday, it is our top post of the day.   Maybe that is because the Sun Journal in Lewiston just two days ago published a big squishy piece about how Lewiston, the Somali epicenter in the state, is coping ten years after the Somali migration to Maine began.  And, maybe people are googling and finding our many posts on the subject.  You can read the Sun Journal story here.

I thought we had learned that the new conservative Governor of the state was reining in the welfare abuse, but according to a college student writing at the College Conservative welfare use and abuse is alive and well.    Although we all know that egregious cases of fraud like those witnessed by this young Walmart employee are not the exclusive domain of immigrants and indeed she doesn’t identify those customers shocking her in the last two summers as immigrants of any sort.  Nonetheless, what she tells us fits what we have learned about why so many immigrants have headed north—to Maine!

From the College Conservative  (Hat tip: Judy):

During the 2010 and 2011 summers, I was a cashier at Wal-Mart #1788 in Scarborough, Maine. I spent hours upon hours toiling away at a register, scanning, bagging, and dealing with questionable clientele. These were all expected parts of the job, and I was okay with it. What I didn’t expect to be part of my job at Wal-Mart was to witness massive amounts of welfare fraud and abuse.

I understand that sometimes, people are destitute. They need help, and they accept help from the state in order to feed their families. This is fine. It happens. I’m not against temporary aid helping those who truly need it. What I saw at Wal-Mart, however, was not temporary aid. I witnessed generations of families all relying on the state to buy food and other items.


The thing that disturbed me more than simple cases of fraud/abuse was the entitled nature of many of my customers.

Nearly 30% of Mainers are on some form of welfare!

Maine has a problem with welfare spending. Maine has some of the highest rates in the nation for food stamp enrollment, Medicaid, and TANF. Nearly 30% of the state is on some form of welfare. Maine is the only state in the nation to rank in the top two for all three categories. This is peculiar, as Maine’s poverty rate isn’t even close to being the highest in the nation. The system in Maine is far easier to get into than in other states, and it encourages dependency. When a person makes over the limit for benefits, they lose all benefits completely. There is no time limit and no motivation to actually get back to work. Furthermore, spending on welfare has increased dramatically, but there has been no reduction of the poverty rate. Something is going terribly wrong, and the things I saw at work were indicators of a much larger problem. Something must change before the state runs out of money funding welfare programs.

Check out the website we are directed to—Fix Maine Welfare, here, where we learn that Maine ranks second in the Nation in all forms of welfare usage.

Indeed, Maine is so far outside the mainstream in the extraordinarily high number of people trapped in its welfare system that not a single other state ranks in the top twelve for enrollment in all three major welfare programs. The state closest to matching Maine’s level of welfare system dependence is New York, which ranks 13th in Food Stamps, 10th in TANF and 4th in Medicaid. Maine ranks second in the nation in all three.

So what will happen when the system crashes—will Maine become Greece with rioting in the streets?  Remember Saul Alinsky and Cloward/Piven about bringing on the revolution by using the poor, here.

Another Muhammad food stamp scammer sentenced to prison

….but get this!  He stays out while his wife serves her time and neither will be deported!

I have a bunch of food stamp fraud bust stories I haven’t posted from earlier this month, this is the first I’m posting to catch up on the backlog.   There is lots of interesting information and some new twists in the case about this Pakistani pair in Kansas.  Readers take note that one of the food stamp sellers was also convicted.

From AP:

Wichita, Kan. —

A Kansas grocery store owner and his wife were sentenced Wednesday to federal prison for a food stamp scam that profited by targeting people at homeless shelters who were willing to sell their government benefits for cash.

U.S. District Judge J. Thomas Marten sentenced Muhammad Qadeer Akram, 47, to 18 months in prison and gave his 38-year-old wife, Shama Qadeer, six months in prison plus six months of home confinement. The judge put the husband’s sentence on hold until after his wife serves her time to allow one of the parents to be home with their young children.

The couple, who owned Alnoor Grocery and Biryani House in Wichita, pleaded guilty in September to one count each of conspiracy to commit food stamp fraud, food stamp fraud and wire fraud. Authorities say they typically gave recipients of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, commonly known as food stamps, 50 to 60 cents on the dollar for the value of their food stamps. [they then collect the full dollar from you—the US taxpayer!–ed]

This is a new one!  They scoured homeless shelters looking for people willing to sell their food stamp privileges!

The couple was accused along with the owners of another small Wichita grocery store of conspiring with Wally Mikhael Gaggo, the runner who scoured homeless shelters for people willing to sell their government benefits. The government charged 13 people in two federal indictments alleging schemes that defrauded the government out of more than $580,000.

Judge went soft on them:

James McIntyre, Shama Qadeer’s attorney, argued for a lower sentence for his client based on her cooperation with the government, her community standing and the needs of her family. He contended the crime was out of character and based “on a wrongheaded effort to save a family business.”

Marten said he gave her a sentence shorter than her husband’s because he believed she would be better suited to care for the couple’s young children. “I don’t believe your culpability is any less, and may be greater than your husband,” Marten said.

Both sentences were far below the federal sentencing guidelines that called for 41 to 51 months in prison for each count, based on the findings that the fraud amounted to $450,000 and the couple had leadership roles in the conspiracy. The judge told them he was not giving them sentences that long because he wanted them to make restitution.  [How on earth will they make restitution, it would take them a lifetime to pay that much money back through legal work!—ed]

So surely the wife will be on welfare with four kids!   How about deportation to save the US taxpayer from more expense!

McIntyre had argued in his court filings that his client married Muhammad Akram, her first cousin, at age 15 in an arranged marriage and has limited education. She is a naturalized U.S. citizen from Pakistan and has four children who live at home.

Warning to all refugees and other immigrants, selling your food stamps is also illegal!

Also Wednesday, Marten sentenced Tequita Higgins, a 28-year-old food stamp recipients who sold her government benefits, to two years of probation and ordered her to pay nearly $2,000 in restitution.

If you are new to RRW and want to know more about this massive type of fraud being perpetrated on the US taxpayer through these convenience store food stamp fraud schemes use our search function for ‘food stamp fraud.’  You will be amused (sort of!) by how many scammers are named Muhammad!

LOL!  I wonder how long Hillary will let me say stuff like this?  Islamic countries angling for speech curbs in the US, here.

Iranian and Afghan asylum seekers drown trying to reach Australia

….”the boats will keep coming!”

Australia is in the same situation as the United States with illegal immigrants attempting to reach the country — the issue of how to deal with the onslaught has become one of the major battles between political parties.

Further inflaming the political debate, here is the news of the most recent deaths of perhaps as many as 200 illegals smuggled onto an unsafe vessel which subsequently sank drowning men, women and children off the coast of Java two days ago.

From the Sydney Morning Herald:

MORE than 200 asylum seekers are feared to have died after their boat sank off Java, victims of increasingly brazen syndicates that are funnelling people through Jakarta airport before packing them onto unsafe boats bound for Australia.

Just over a year after a disaster off Christmas Island in which 50 people died, a boat carrying about 250 asylum seekers sank off Prigi beach in eastern Java on Saturday.

There were conflicting reports last night about how many people survived. Indonesian officials said there were only 34 – contradicting Australia’s new Home Affairs Minister, Jason Clare, who said 87 asylum seekers had been rescued.


Survivors said about 40 of the 250 people on board were children. The boat had a normal capacity of about 100, according to Kelik Enggar Purwanto, of the local search and rescue team. It was unlikely any more survivors would be found, he said.


Many of the asylum seekers had flown from Dubai to Jakarta, where Indonesian officials are said to have charged them $500 each to pass through the airport without visas. They were then taken in four buses to an unknown location on the south coast of Java.   [Looks like its Indonesia that needs to be brought under control here—ed]

The case highlights the increased confidence of people-smuggling networks and the huge demand for their services. In recent months, the regularity of vessels attempting to cross to Australia has increased, as has the size of their human cargo.

Meanwhile the issue of immigration continues to be a thorn in the side of the present Gillard government.  Conservatives led by Tony Abbott (who this author predicts will defeat Gillard in the next election) want to make it less “welcoming” for asylum seekers when they arrive in Australia by holding them in detention as a deterrent.  (Australian readers, am I getting this right?—ed)

Below is an excerpt from an opinion piece in which the author, Dilan Thampapillai , says no matter who is prime minister the boats will continue to come.   Read his whole thesis here.

No matter what Prime Minister Julia Gillard or Chris Bowen say or do, no matter which foot Cory Bernardi decides to place in his mouth, Tony Abbott will still win the next election. And the boats will keep coming.

It would take something spectacular, well beyond Keating’s ‘true believer’s’ election win in 1993, for Julia Gillard to defeat Tony Abbott. Even if that miracle did happen the boats would still keep coming.

Yet, a lot of our political rhetoric and policy action centers on stopping boats. As a proposed solution to a serious problem it is an exercise in denial.

As immigration and how to stop the flow of illegals has become a critical issue in the 2012 Presidential election in the US, so too is it apparently an animating issue in Australia.