State Department folk are undoubtedly scratching their heads over what to do about the looney anti-American leader of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez. Here's a suggestion, only partly tongue-in-cheek: Chavez claims that his brand of populist socialism is superior to Yankee capitalism. Well, let the people vote with their feet. Venezuela has a population of approximately 25 million. How about letting any Venezuelan who can pass a basic English test and get ahold of, say, twenty thousand dollars, emigrate to the U.S.? As more and more productive Venezuelans move to the U.S., and Chavez ceases to benefit from the spike in oil prices (which can only work in the long term so long as oil prices climb), Venezuela will inevitably sink into economic straits of Chavez's model, Cuba, and become about as much of a strategic threat to the U.S. as Cuba currently is. And the U.S. will gain a few million productive and grateful citizens, happy to escape Venezuela before it becomes another Cuba. And wouldn't it be fun to watch Venezuelans line up for English classes for the chance to emigrate to The Great Imperalist Enemy?Oh, what fun. But why didn't we do that with Iraq? In fact, as long as we're being generous with visas, let's do it now. Half the terrified populace can earn their twenty Gs by selling out the other half to the militias, or by selling some leftover statuary from the Iraq National Museum on eBay, or by selling the oil rights under their hovels.
The cringing skills these new Iraqi-American citizens will have developed should serve them well in corporate life.