Sunday, January 29, 2017

Implications of Trump's Muslim Ban, Mexico Wall

Why did President Donald Trump bar entry of citizens of 7 Muslim majority nations (Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Sudan, Somalia and Yemen) for 90 days? Will it extend to Pakistan and other Muslim majority countries in the future? What message does it send to world's 1.5 billion Muslims, including American Muslims?

Are persecuted Muslim refugees no longer welcome in the United States? Why did Trump choose Holocaust Memorial Day to sign such an order to hurt the people most at risk of similar fate as that of the European Jews during the 2nd World War? Is this an unconstitutional religious test, especially when Trump says he will accept Christians from these countries?

Will Trump's Muslim ban order survive court challenges planned by CAIR and ACLU? Will it encourage attacks on American Muslims in the United States? Will it play into the hands of ISIS that claims the US is at war with Muslims? Will Trump's Muslim ban make America more or less safe? Will it hurt American interests at home and abroad?

Why does President Trump want to have Mexico pay for a border wall? Is Mexico the biggest source of illegal immigrants into the United States? Or is it India? Will the Wall work to stop immigrants determined to come to the United States?

Is Trump willing to risk a trade war with Mexico to extract $15 billion payment? How will this hurt the 2 million US jobs tied to $230 billion US exports to Mexico? Will its impact on Mexican economy bring more illegal immigrants to US from Mexico when such immigration is at all time low?

Viewpoint From Overseas host Faraz Darvesh discusses these questions with panelists Ali H. Cemendtaur and Riaz Haq (

Implications of Trump's Muslim Ban, Mexico Wall from Ikolachi on Vimeo.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Trump's Muslim Ban

Trump Phenomenon

Islamophobia in America

India Deploys 100,000 Troops to Fight Maoists

India Surpasses Mexico as the Biggest Source of Illegal Immigrants

Commonalities Between Trump and Modi

GOP's Dog-whistle Politics Produced Trump


Anonymous said...

Riaz Haq said...

How #SiliconValley and #Hollywood plan to fight #Trump's #Muslim travel ban. #MuslimBanprotest … via @YahooNews

Top execs in Silicon Valley, Hollywood actors, and Washington politicians are coming to the defense of Muslims affected by a temporary travel ban into the United States that White House implemented on Friday.

Google and Facebook’s chief executives criticized President Trump’s immigration order, while former secretary of State Madeleine Albright, actress Mayim Bialik, and feminist Gloria Steinem all said they would register as Muslims if such a registry is created. This opposition to the executive order comes as Muslim advocacy groups prepare to challenge the order’s constitutionality in court.

Mr. Trump has long vowed to ban or limit Muslim immigration into the country in order to protect Americans from terrorist attacks carried out by Islamic extremists. Now that his administration has lived up to such campaign pledges, those resisting it argue it is un-American, both constitutionally and morally.

“We need to keep this country safe, but we should do that by focusing on people who actually pose a threat,” wrote Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg in a post on his personal page on Friday.

“We are a nation of immigrants,” continued Mr. Zuckerberg, mentioning his German, Austrian, and Polish ancestry. “And we all benefit when the best and brightest from around the world can live, work and contribute here.”

The executive order the president signed on Friday temporarily bans both people from at least seven Muslim-majority nations and suspends the broader refugee program. For at least 90 days, travelers from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen are barred from entering the US. The order also indefinitely bans Syrian refugees from the US.

Trump said the order gives his administration time to develop stricter screening process for refugees, immigrants, and visitors.

“I’m establishing new vetting measures to keep radical Islamic terrorists out of the United States of America. Don’t want them here,” Trump said on Friday at the Pentagon. “We only want to admit those into our country who will support our country and love deeply our people.”

The order took effect immediately, with travelers bound for the US already affected. The Department of Homeland Security issued a directive on Friday afternoon instructing the Customs and Border Control to enforce the order, according to the New York Daily News. Late Friday, some green card and visa holders were already being blocked from boarding US-bound flights, according to the newspaper.

However, Trump indicated on Friday he will prioritize bringing Syrian Christians into the US. The president said in an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network that Christians seeking refugee status would receive priority. Trump indicated the US has unfairly treated Syrian Christians seeking religious asylum.

Some Republicans praised the executive order because they said the self-declared Islamic State has threatened to exploit the US immigration system.

"I am pleased that President Trump is using the tools granted to him by Congress and the power granted by the Constitution to help keep America safe and ensure we know who is entering the United States," said Virginia Rep. Bob Goodlatte, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.

But Google chief executive Sundar Pichai criticized the travel ban in an email to staff on Friday, saying it affects at least 187 of the company’s employees.

Riaz Haq said...

@POTUS #Trump Don't register #Muslims, register guns to save #American lives. #Islamophobia #guncontrol #MuslimBan …

Riaz Haq said...

#Islamabad warns against extending US #MuslimBan to #Pakistan. Will withhold coop if #travelban applied. … via @FT

Islamabad has warned the US that it will reduce its co-operation with Washington in the fight against Islamist militants if Pakistan is added to the list of countries covered by President Donald Trump’s controversial visa ban.

Pakistani officials have told the Financial Times that a move by Mr Trump to put their county on the list of those for whom visas are banned would hamper joint efforts to fight extremism, especially in Afghanistan. This follows comments from the White House chief of staff suggesting the travel ban could be extended to other countries, including Pakistan.

The US still has around 10,000 troops in Afghanistan, and has found its attempts to reduce those numbers hampered by counter-attacks by the Taliban.

While Pakistan has been criticised in the past for not doing enough to stop homegrown terrorism, the Pakistani military has handed over hundreds of suspected Taliban and al-Qaeda militants to the US following the 9/11 attacks.

One senior Pakistani official warned: “If the US puts a ban on our travellers, how can we continue supporting the US in the same manner? The [US-Pakistan] alliance will automatically get scaled down if there is a US ban [on travellers from Pakistan].”

Another warned: “Washington risks endangering its Afghanistan stabilisation project.”

The head of a prominent Pakistani business group said: “Progress made by the US in defeating the Taliban and al-Qaeda will be undone if the US scales down relations with Pakistan.”

The warnings came on Monday, a day after Reince Priebus, White House chief of staff, suggested that the no-visa policy already implemented for seven Muslim countries could be extended to Pakistan.

Mr Priebus told CBS News: “You can point to other countries that have similar problems like Pakistan and others — perhaps we need to take it further.”

Experts said Mr Priebus’s comments marked a significant escalation in the immigration policy by involving a nuclear-armed country with which the US often co-operates closely.

Rahul Roy-Chaudhury, senior fellow for South Asia at the International institute for Strategic Studies, said: “We have seen the Americans provide funding to Pakistan for their defence programme and particularly for their efforts in Afghanistan, where they have strong joint interests.”

Mr Roy-Chaudhury predicted that Islamabad might react to any extension of the visa ban by restricting visas to American security and intelligence personnel, as has happened during previous diplomatic rows.

Officials in Pakistan have been trying to work out what Mr Trump’s election means for their relationship with the US, which will spend $860m this financial year in aid to the south Asian country.

Mr Trump has in the past criticised Pakistan for harbouring terrorists, and in 2012 called on the country to apologise for “providing a safe sanctuary to Osama bin Laden for six years”.

In December, however, he delighted Islamabad with a gushing phone call to Nawaz Sharif, Pakistani prime minister, in which he called Pakistan a “fantastic country, fantastic place of fantastic people”.

Riaz Haq said...

Ex #Nixon lawyer John Dean who seved prison time now predicts #Trump presidency 'will end in calamity' #Watergate

The former White House counsel to Richard Nixon — the only U.S. president to resign from office — is warning that Donald Trump’s tenure “will end in calamity.”

John Dean, the lawyer the FBI described as “the master manipulator of the cover-up” in the Watergate scandal, took to Twitter on Monday night to describe Trump’s statement on Sally Yates, a Barack Obama appointee serving as acting attorney general, as “nasty” and a “new low.”

Trump fired Yates on Monday after she said she would not defend his controversial immigration and refugee executive order in court. A Muslim advocacy group filed a lawsuit earlier that day arguing that the order, which temporarily bars people from seven Muslim-majority countries from traveling to the U.S. and Trump says is needed to prevent terrorism, is unconstitutional. Over the weekend, it prompted waves of protests and confusion at airports across the country.

Riaz Haq said...

Ex State Dept official William Blum: "If I were the president, I could stop terrorist attacks against the United States in a few days. Permanently. I would first apologize -- very publicly and very sincerely -- to all the widows and orphans, the impoverished and the tortured, and all the many millions of other victims of American imperialism."

Riaz Haq said...

#Japanese firms hesitant to invest in "unstable" #India: #Japan prof Masahiro Kawai. #Modi … via @IndianExpress

Underdeveloped infrastructure, unstable social conditions, and legal systems and a lack of security are some “important reasons” why Japanese firms are hesitant to invest in the country, said Japanese professor Masahiro Kawai on Saturday.
Kawai was speaking on the final day of the Bengal Global Business Summit, at a meeting between academics and economic experts from India and the ASEAN. In an effort to accelerate economic growth in Asia, experts said, the primary focus of all countries needed to be connectivity and road infrastructure.

Japan invests $1 trillion across the world. Out of this, India receives only $14 million, which is less than one per cent.”

“There are some important reasons for this. One of the main concerns that Japanese firms have is the underdeveloped infrastructure in India. The second is the underdeveloped legal system, which makes investment routes unclear. The third is the taxation system, which can be mitigated through introduction of GST. And the fourth is the lack of security and unstable social conditions,’’ he said.

Riaz Haq said...

As of 2010, there were an estimated 1.6 billion Muslims around the world, making Islam the world’s second-largest religious tradition after Christianity. And although many people, especially in the United States, may associate Islam with countries in the Middle East or North Africa, nearly two-thirds (62%) of Muslims live in the Asia-Pacific region, according to the Pew Research Center analysis. In fact, more Muslims live in India and Pakistan (344 million combined) than in the entire Middle East-North Africa region (317 million).

Riaz Haq said...

#ISIS cites “blessed ban” as proof #US is at war with #Islam. #Trump #MuslimBan … #science

For starters, consider the fact that, when Trump announced his intention to ban Muslims from the U.S. on the campaign trail, ISIS promptly re-aired the announcement as part of its propaganda offensive. At the time, General James Mattis, now Secretary of Defense, said the proposed ban was “causing us great damage.” ISIS leaders also used news of Trump’s election victory as a rallying cry, celebrating it as heralding “the imminent demise of America.” And, although it is too early to gauge the full reaction to this latest escalation, jihadist groups have already hailed the “blessed ban” as proof the U.S. is at war with Islam—with one group going so far as to describe President Trump as “the best caller to Islam,” according to the Washington Post.
All the early evidence indicates that the seven-nation ban doesn't fight fire with fire—as President Trump contends—but rather adds fuel to that fire. The reciprocal dynamic here could not be clearer: Trump feeds off ISIS and ISIS feeds off Trump. This is part of what Douglas Pratt from the University of Waikato in New Zealand refers to as co-radicalization . Extreme actions and statements are used to provoke others to treat your own group as dangerous—and that helps to consolidate followers around those very leaders who preach greater emnity.
Here lies the real power of terrorism. It is not so much about spreading fear as it is about seeding retaliation and further conflict. ISIS (or ISIL) exploits this dynamic with ruthless effect. Their core narrative, and the basis of their propaganda appeal, is very simple. According to Ben Rhodes, a deputy national security advisor in the Obama administration, the narrative goes like this: "ISIL is the caliphate. They are representatives of all Islam. Islam is a war with the West and the United States. And therefore, Muslims have a responsibility to come join ISIL and to fight in that war." The aim of their actions is to goad Western nations in acting in ways that give credence to this narrative.

Riaz Haq said...

#Trump strategist Bannon says "#Islam and #China are expansionists". Anticipates "war within the president’s term’

“You have an expansionist Islam and you have an expansionist China. Right? They are motivated. They’re arrogant. They’re on the march. And they think the Judeo-Christian west is on the retreat,” Bannon said during a February 2016 radio show.

“We’re going to war in the South China Sea in five to 10 years,” he said in March 2016. “There’s no doubt about that. They’re taking their sandbars and making basically stationary aircraft carriers and putting missiles on those. They come here to the United States in front of our face – and you understand how important face is – and say it’s an ancient territorial sea.”

Aside from conflict between armies, Bannon repeatedly focused on his perception that Christianity around the world is under threat.

But China is not the only hotspot Bannon sees, and forecasts another ground war for American troops in the Middle East.

“Some of these situations may get a little unpleasant,” Bannon said in November 2015. “But you know what, we’re in a war. We’re clearly going into, I think, a major shooting war in the Middle East again.”

Riaz Haq said...

#Trump Wants a War, but Not Just Any War. #Armageddon - #Israel News He needs a war to reconcile the contradictions of a populist and extravagantly self-contradictory election campaign, in which he vowed to rebuild the military to historic levels while also slashing government spending. He needs the kind of war that could make good his vows to revive heavy industrial manufacturing and the mining of "beautiful coal."
A war would free him to green-light mammoth corporate monopolies, and to provide the ultimate pretext, the emergency imperative, for abrogating on a massive scale the most basic of constitutional guarantees to individual freedoms - gun ownership excepted.
read more:

Riaz Haq said...

#WhiteHouse -Cabinet battle over #Trump’s #MuslimBan. #Bannon v #Kelly (#Homeland) on #GreenCard Waiver

Over the weekend of Jan. 28-29, as airport protests raged over President Trump’s executive order on immigration, the man charged with implementing the order, Homeland Security Secretary John F. Kelly, had a plan. He would issue a waiver for lawful permanent residents, a.k.a. green-card holders, from the seven majority-Muslim countries whose citizens had been banned from entering the United States.

White House chief strategist Stephen K. Bannon wanted to stop Kelly in his tracks and told him not to issue the order. Kelly, according to two administration officials familiar with the confrontation, refused to comply. That was the beginning of a weekend of negotiations among senior Trump administration staffers that led, on Sunday, Jan. 29, to a White House decision to change the process for the issuance of executive orders.

The disagreement between Bannon and Kelly pitted a political operator against a military disciplinarian. Two administration officials gave the following account of their exchange: Respectfully but firmly, the retired general told Bannon that despite his high position in the White House and close relationship with President Trump, the former Breitbart chief was not in Kelly’s chain of command. If the president wanted Kelly to back off from issuing the waiver, Kelly would have to hear it from the president directly, he told Bannon. White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Kelly and Bannon spoke on Jan. 27 and 29, but denied they had a confrontation over the green card waiver. In an email sent late Saturday, Bannon also denied a confrontation with Kelly and said he had not told him to withhold the waiver.

Trump didn’t call Kelly to tell him to hold off. Kelly issued the waiver late Saturday night, although it wasn’t officially announced until the following day.

Riaz Haq said...

Stratfor recommends #America use divide-and-conquer strategy in the #MidEast #Iran #SaudiArabia #Sunni #Shia #ISIS …

From the beginning of American history, the U.S. has used the divisions in the world to achieve its ends. The American Revolution prevailed by using the ongoing tension between Britain and France to convince the French to intervene. In World War II, facing Nazi Germany and the Stalinist Soviet Union, the United States won the war by supplying the Soviets with the wherewithal to bleed the German army dry, opening the door to American invasion and, with Britain, the occupation of Europe.
Unless you have decisive and overwhelming power, your only options are to decline combat, vastly increase your military force at staggering cost and time, or use divergent interests to recruit a coalition that shares your strategic goal. Morally, the third option is always a painful strategy. The United States asking monarchists for help in isolating the British at Yorktown was in a way a deal with the devil. The United States allying with a murderous and oppressive Soviet Union to defeat another murderous and oppressive regime was also a deal with the devil. George Washington and Franklin D. Roosevelt both gladly made these deals, each knowing a truth about strategy: What comes after the war comes after the war. For now, the goal is to reach the end of the war victorious.

In the case of the Middle East, I would argue that the United States lacks the forces or even a conceivable strategy to crush either the Sunni rising or Iran. Iran is a country of about 80 million defended to the west by rugged mountains and to the east by harsh deserts. This is the point where someone inevitably will say that the U.S. should use air power. This is the point where I will say that whenever Americans want to win a war without paying the price, they fantasize about air power because it is low-cost and irresistible. Air power is an adjunct to war on the ground. It has never proven to be an effective alternative.
The idea that the United States will simultaneously wage wars in Syria, Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan and emerge victorious is fantasy. What is not fantasy is the fact that the Islamic world, both strategically and tactically, is profoundly divided. The United States must decide who is the enemy. “Everybody” is an emotionally satisfying answer to some, but it will lead to defeat. The United States cannot fight everyone from the Mediterranean to the Hindu Kush. It can indefinitely carry out raids and other operations, but it can’t win.
To craft an effective strategy, the United States must go back to the strategic foundations of the republic: a willingness to ally with one enemy to defeat another. The goal should be to ally with the weaker enemy, or the enemy with other interests, so that one war does not immediately lead to another. At this moment, the Sunnis are weaker than the Iranians. But there are far more Sunnis, they cover a vast swath of ground and they are far more energized than Iran. Currently, Iran is more powerful, but I would argue the Sunnis are more dangerous. Therefore, I am suggesting an alignment with the Iranians, not because they are any more likable (and neither were Stalin or Louis XVI), but because they are the convenient option.
The Iranians hate and fear the Sunnis. Any opportunity to crush the Sunnis will appeal. The Iranians are also as cynical as George Washington was. But in point of fact, an alliance with the Sunnis against the Shiites could also work. The Sunnis despise the Iranians, and given the hope of crushing them, the Sunnis could be induced to abandon terrorism. There are arguments to be made on either side, as there is in Afghanistan.

Riaz Haq said...

#American #Stocks Could Continue Climbing with #Trump's Big Corp Tax Cut … $DGX $LUV $NSC $ORLY $RSG $SCHW $TSCO $VVC


A “phenomenal” tax plan is expected to be released in the coming days.

Many high tax paying stocks have seen their share prices reach new highs.

5 companies could still see their shares jump on positive news.

Trump Tax Reform

Stocks are at all time highs three months following President Trump's November victory as the nation's 45th President continues to peddle tax reform and infrastructure spending. A "phenomenal" tax plan is expected to be released in the coming days while many analysts continue to believe it will include a proposal to reduce the corporate tax rate from 35% to 15%.

As soon as Trump took office, Wall Street strategists started recommending various stocks with high effective tax rates seeing that they would benefit most from a tax cut. Not surprisingly, many companies have seen their share prices reach new highs including Goldman Sachs' recommendations: Charles Schwab (NYSE:SCHW), Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) and Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV).

But are there any stocks that still appear fundamentally undervalued if President Trump does indeed follow through on his "phenomenal" tax reform?

5 Stocks That Could Still Jump 25% on a Trump Tax Cut

In order to find stocks that would benefit most from a US corporate tax rate cut, we searched for companies that:

1) Have historically paid an effective tax rate of over 30%, and
2) Generate more than 75% of total revenues domestically.

Then using's google speadsheet add-on (will be released in the next few weeks to all members), we filtered through our discounted cash flow (DCF) analyses to find stocks that are still trading below their intrinsic value when the tax rate assumption driving the model is reduced to 15%.

Five stocks immediately jumped out: O'Reilly Automotive (NASDAQ:ORLY), Republic Services (NYSE:RSG), Tractor Supply Company (NASDAQ:TSCO), Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC) and Vectren Corporation (NYSE:VVC).

Below is a side-by-side comparison of each company's projected free cash flows when adjusting the tax rate assumption. The left column calculates free cash flows and the resulting fair value when using the company's historical effective tax. The right column does the same but applies a 15% rate. Every other assumption driving the models is held constant.

Riaz Haq said...

#Trump plans to rescind #MuslimBan executive order, issue revised order - by bcn_sfex - The San Francisco Examiner

The U.S. Department of Justice told a federal appeals court in San Francisco on Thursday that President Donald Trump plans to rescind an existing executive order banning travel from seven predominantly Muslim countries and replace it with a new, narrower order “in the near future.”

Trump made a similar announcement during a news conference at the White House on Thursday, saying he expects to roll out the new order next week.

The Department of Justice said the revised order will address the concerns of a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled unanimously last week that Trump’s original Jan. 27 order appeared to violate the U.S. Constitution’s guarantee of due process.

The original order barred visitors and refugees from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen from entering the country for 90 days. It also sought to stop refugees from all countries for 120 days and exclude Syrian refugees indefinitely.

The Department of Justice’s brief Thursday was submitted in response to the appeals court’s request for responses on whether the smaller panel’s decision should be reviewed by an expanded 11-judge panel.

The department said it is not requesting the expanded review.

Department of Justice lawyers wrote, “Rather than continuing this litigation, the president intends in the near future to rescind the order and replace it with a new, substantially revised executive order to eliminate what the panel erroneously thought were constitutional concerns.”

Riaz Haq said...

#Trump's Health Pick #Indian-#American Seema Verma Wants the #Poor to Pay More For #Medicaid Coverage. #cms

It’s the confirmation hearing nobody was watching.

Thursday morning, the Senate Finance Committee held a confirmation hearing for Seema Verma, the Trump administration’s pick to lead the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Though relatively breezy by confirmation-hearing standards at just under three hours and relatively low on theatrics, Verma’s low-key hearing will help determine the health outcomes for over a third of all Americans.

Thirty-four percent of Americans receive health-insurance coverage under one of the three federal insurance programs, Medicare, Medicaid, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program. With their vows to repeal Obamacare, the Trump administration and health secretary Tom Price aim to reduce the Medicaid portion of that number—and perhaps even put Medicare on the chopping block. Barring any drama in the confirmation process, as the administrator of CMS, Verma will be the point person for reducing the federal spending on public insurance programs, particularly for the poor. And her background suggests she is up to the challenge.

Verma is best-known for her role in reshaping the Indiana Medicaid program under then-Governor Mike Pence. Despite Pence being an ardent critic of Obamacare, Indiana made the choice to expand Medicaid anyway. But they utilized a pathway known as the 1115 waiver to craft a program that diverged significantly from the guidelines under the standard Obamacare program, and quickly created the most conservative Medicaid expansion program in the country. That program, known as the Healthy Indiana Plan 2.0, was the brainchild of Verma and her health-care consulting company, SVC, Inc, then recommended as an experienced expert and consultancy firm with knowledge of the minutiae of CMS regulations.

Although many see the creation of “HIP 2.0” as a strange move for a Republican-controlled state, Indiana has suffered from several public health issues for years—not to mention a well-publicized drug epidemic that ballooned into an HIV outbreak under Pence’s watch—and has consistently ranked near the bottom in most state health indices. It quickly became clear that the HIP 2.0 program under Verma did not intend to be a very generous program. The plan sought to eliminate standard Medicaid protections and provisions for vulnerable people, exchanging them for a premium-based program that mimicked private plans. In her defense of those reforms, Verma wrote:

Riaz Haq said...

#Trump's New #FCC Chair #Indian-#American Ajit Pai Ready to Roll Back #Obama Era Regulations | #NetNeutrality

During President Trump’s campaign, along with tax reform and the repeal and replacement of Obamacare, he made regulatory reform a top priority. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai appeared on the FOX Business Network to discuss the agency’s role in helping rein in regulations.

“Well, I think we want to cut those regulations that are standing in the way of innovation and investment,” Pai told host Trish Regan.

Pai explained that a common concern he hears from businesses across the country is that regulations are getting in the way of expanding high-speed internet access across America.

According to Pai, that business investment and innovation has a direct impact on consumers as well.

“The consistent complaint I hear from consumers is that they want better, faster, cheaper internet. And to the extent that we can do something at the FCC to help change that equation, that's what I'm committed to doing.”

Riaz Haq said...

Khizr Khan, Gold Star #Muslim-#American father, says his “freedom to travel abroad” is under review by #Trump Admin

On the same day that the White House announced President Donald Trump’s revised travel ban on residents of six majority-Muslim nations, Gold Star father and Muslim-American Khizr Khan confirmed that his “traveling privileges” were under review and that his “freedom to travel abroad” had been temporarily suspended.

Khan, a Pakistani-born naturalized U.S. citizen of more than 30 years, was set to speak “about tolerance, understanding, unity, and the rule of law” at a luncheon in Toronto on Tuesday. The two-hour event was slated to include a question-and-answer session on “what we can do about the appalling turn of events in Washington — so that we don’t all end up sacrificing everything,” according to the organizer.

On Sunday, however, Khan was informed that he would be unable to travel to Canada, CTV’s Rosa Hwang first reported.

According to Ramsay Talks, the organization that had planned Khan’s talk, the Harvard-educated lawyer’s “travel privileges are being reviewed.” It is unclear what review or revocation of “travel privileges” Khan would be subject to given his status as a U.S. citizen: Anyone with a valid U.S. passport should be able to enter and leave the U.S. It is also not clear who is reviewing those privileges, as Canadian officials have not returned a request for comment.

Pakistan is not one of the six nations whose citizens are temporarily prohibited from travel into the U.S. under Trump’s revised ban — which isn’t scheduled to go into effect until March 16.

Ramsay Talks quoted a statement said to be from Khan in its announcement. “This turn of events is not just concerning to me, but to all my fellow Americans who cherish our freedom to travel abroad,” said Khan, whose son, U.S. Army Capt. Humayun S.M.Khan, was killed by a car bomb in Iraq in 2004. “I have not been given any reason as to why.”

In addition, Ramsay Talks said Khan offered his “sincere apologies” to those who had planned to attend the event, in a statement posted on Facebook. The group also offered to refund the fees for those who had already paid to attend the event.

At least one other Canadian organization, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, has confirmed that Khan’s planned trip to Canada has been canceled.

Riaz Haq said...

Eugenics, Anti-Immigration Laws Of The Past Still Resonate Today, Journalist Says

Nearly 100 years ago, Congress passed a restrictive law that cut the overall number of immigrants coming to the United States and put severe limits on those who were let in.

Journalist Daniel Okrent says that the eugenics movement — a junk science that stemmed from the belief that certain races and ethnicities were morally and genetically superior to others — informed the Immigration Act of 1924, which restricted entrance to the U.S.

"Eugenics was used as a primary weapon in the effort to keep Southern and Eastern Europeans out of the country," Okrent says. "[The eugenics movement] made it a palatable act, because it was based on science or presumed science."

Okrent notes the 1924 law drastically cut the number of Jews, Italians, Greeks and Eastern Europeans that could enter the country. Even during World War II, when hundreds of thousands of people were displaced and dying, access remained limited. The limits remained in place until 1965, when the Immigration and Nationality Act ended immigration restrictions based on nationality, ethnicity and race.

Okrent sees echos of the 1924 act in President Trump's hard-line stance regarding immigration: "The [current] rhetoric of criminality, the attribution of criminality — not to individual criminals but to hundreds of thousands of people of various nationalities — that's very similar to the notion of moral deficiency that was hurled by the eugenicists at the Southern and Eastern Europeans of the 1910s and '20s."

On what immigration was like at the turn of the 20th century, before the Immigration Act of 1924

Ellis Island opens in 1892 and within a few years it becomes one of the busiest port spots anywhere in the U.S. Ellis Island was a teeming hive of activity as hundreds of thousands — in some years more than a million — immigrants came pouring through. [It] was a very, very busy place and a very alienating place for a lot of people, because of the examination that people had to go through, particularly for tuberculosis, trachoma and other diseases. But once through the line, and then onto the ferry boat that took people to Manhattan, it was really a wonderful place to have been.

On the Immigration Act of 1924, and the quotas set up to restrict immigration

First, there is an overall quota. At various times it was 300,000 people, then it got chopped down to ... 162,000 people. ... The second part is where did these people come from? And it was decided that, well, let's continue to reflect the population of America as it has become, so we will decide where people can come from based on how many people of their same nationality were already here. ...

If 10 percent of the current American population came from country A, then 10 percent of that year's immigrants could come from country A. Except — and this is probably the most malign and dishonest thing that came out of this entire movement — they didn't do this on the basis of the 1920 census, which had been conducted just four years before, or the 1910, or even the 1900. But those numbers were based on the population in 1890, before the large immigration from Eastern and Southern Europe had begun. So to any question about whether there was any racist or anti-Semitic or anti-Italian intent, this established there clearly was. ...