bill ackmanelon muskFeaturedimmigrationRep. Dean Phillips

‘It’s going viral basically’ – HotAir

Yesterday, Elon Musk joined a Spaces forum on X with Bill Ackman and Democratic candidate for president Dean Phillips. Ackman, as you probably know, is a billionaire who was recently involved in pushing for the ouster of Claudine Gay at Harvard. Rep. Dean Phillips is a Minnesota congressman who is one of several Democratic challengers to Joe Biden.

The Spaces gathering, which took place yesterday, did generate some headlines but most of them were about how Phillips might offer Musk and Ackman cabinet positions if her were elected president. Here’s Politico:

Phillips, who is running a longshot bid against President Joe Biden, spoke with Musk, hedge fund billionaire Bill Ackman and podcast host Jason Calacanis for a wide-ranging conversation on Musk’s X spaces platform. Eventually, the topic turned to what his first 100 days in office would look like. The Minnesota representative said he would build “the most extraordinary bipartisan Cabinet in American history.”

“Maybe we will have a third of them on this spaces right now, guys,” he added.

Phillips basic argument is that Joe Biden can’t win the 2024 election. “The coronation of a candidate, in this case Joe Biden who is unelectable— every single poll, his approval numbers— intuition, we all know why. The coronation of a candidate…is antithetical to what this country was founded on,” he said.

But the real highlight of the forum was the discussion of the border crisis. Here’s a bit of what Musk said about the border. Asked what he thought was a reasonable border strategy, he replied, “First of all I should say I’m very pro-immigrant obviously being one myself and you can just look at all the aces that have come to America and build incredible things to say, wow, it would be foolish if we had prevented them coming or if they’d chosen not to come because they’ve added so much value to the team.

“The right way to think about a country is like a pro sports team. It’s like, okay, you want to get the ace players on your team and you certainly don’t want to force them to fight against you on the other team. That’s crazy. If you add some of these players to the team that’s going to help you win the championship and it helps the whole team so I’m very much in favor of a greatly expanded legal immigration system.

“Right now it is trying to get your green card or citizenship is a byzantine, Kafka-esque, laborious and just flat out wrong, an insane obstacle course to become a permanent resident and then a citizen. And it’s limited to a very small number of people. So we really need to first of all fix that.

“And then secondly we cannot have, not merely an open border but a border where the federal government is facilitating the transfers of vast numbers of people into the country. Even when, say, Texas tries to take action to enforce the law the federal government is trying to stop them from doing so. There’s literally a federal lawsuit to stop Texas from actually enforcing the illegal immigration laws.

“It’s important to bear in mind the United States is only 4 to 5 percent of the world population so it’s very easy for the United States to get swamped by illegal immigration, just absolutely swamped. If you’re somewhere else and you say there’s going to get free money and housing and medical care to illegal immigrants and that exceeds the standard of living in half the world then why doesn’t half the world just move here?

“As Bill [Ackman] said a moment ago, incentives drive behavior, obviously. It would be strange if they didn’t. And so what we’re seeing is that word is getting out. It’s going viral basically. Illegal immigration through the southern border is going viral. This is not a Mexico thing. Almost none of the people coming across are Mexican.”

After a brief interruption by the host, Musk continued, “Just look at the graphs of the rate of growth of illegal immigration. It is going exponential. To use a rocketship analogy, it is a rocketship of growth of illegal immigration. Because of social media, everyone on earth knows this. It is now an industry.”

I don’t have a lot to add other than that I basically agree with everything he said here. In fact, I’ve said some of it before myself. The word is out, literally on social media, that you can come to the US border and be given a pass to live here basically for good. And for many millions of people around the world, that’s an offer that is too good to pass up. We need to get control of this rather than simply trying to manage the chaos. Joe Biden and his allies don’t seem interested in doing that. They’ve had three years and they’ve only made it worse. God only knows what the immigration picture could look like if he’s reelected and continues down the same path.

In any case, there’s more to this forum and it’s pretty interesting to hear Democrats being somewhat reasonable about issues like the border. The original version of this was over an hour long but it was edited down to about 45 minutes by the podcast host. Musk’s discussion of the border starts about 10 minutes in.


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