Tag Archive: Bagpipes


Ebola Yes, Bagpipes No

 

 

 

 

” Thomas Eric Duncan has the distinction of being America’s Patient Zero – the first but not the last person to develop Ebola symptoms in the United States.

  Is he a US citizen? No, he’s Liberian.

  Is he a resident of the United States? No, he landed at Washington’s Dulles Airport on September 20th, in order to visit his sister and having quit his job in Monrovia a few weeks earlier.

  So he’s a single unemployed man with relatives in the US and no compelling reason to return to his native land. That alone is supposed to be cause for immigration scrutiny.

  In addition, visitors from Liberia have the fifth highest “visa overstay rate” in the United States. That’s to say, they understand very clearly that all that matters is getting in. Once you’re in, they’ll never get you out.

  And, of course, Liberia is one of the hottest spots of Ebola’s West African “hot zone”. It’s been all over the front pages, except apparently in The US Customs & Border Protection Staff Newsletter, where it rated a solitary “News In Brief” item at the foot of page 37.

  Just to give you an example of how hard-assed the boneheads of America’s immigration bureaucracy can be when they want to:

  The legendary Gord Sinclair, longtime news director of CJAD in Montreal, had a ski place near Jay in northern Vermont, and he invited his engineer on the show to come down and visit him. “What’s the purpose of your visit?” asked the agent at the small rural border post.

” Oh, just a relaxing weekend at my boss’ place,” said Gord’s colleague affably, and then chortled, “although I don’t know if it’ll be that relaxing. He’ll probably have me out in the yard chopping wood all day.”

  So the immigration agent refused him entry on the grounds that he would be working illegally in the United States.”

 

Nobody ridicules government incompetence and idiocy as well as Mark Steyn , read it all 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Punitive Bureaucracy’s Day Off

 

 

 

 

” I wrote two weeks ago about two New Hampshire teenagers having their bagpipes seized at the northern border by US Customs & Border Protection. This would be the same “border” “protection” agency that has turned the southern border into an express welfare check-in for any of the world’s seven billion people minded to show up there.

  My fellow Granite Staters – 17-year-old Campbell Webster and Eryk Bean, of Concord and Londonderry, New Hampshire – understood that if you go to a highland fling a couple of hours north in Quebec you’re now obligated to get your bagpipes approved by US Fish & Wildlife.

  Because that’s just the way it is in the Land of the Free.

  So Messrs Webster and Bean got their CITES certificate and presented it to the US CBP agent at the Vermont border crossing.

  Whereupon he promptly confiscated their bagpipes on the grounds that, yes, their US Fish & Wildlife CITES paperwork was valid, but it’s only valid at 28 ports of entry and this wasn’t one of them.

  Nor is any other US/Canadian land crossing. So, if you’re a piper in, say, Pittsburg, New Hampshire and you want to play in a competition in La Patrie, Quebec 20 minutes north, you have to drive four-to-five hours south to Logan Airport in Boston, fly to Montreal and drive two hours east to La Patrie.

  Because that’s just the way it is in the Land of the Free.

  When the CBP agent seized Messrs Webster and Bean’s bagpipes, he told them – with the characteristic insouciance of the thug bureaucracy – that they were “never going to see them again”. But thanks to the unwelcome publicity the Homeland Security mafiosi were forced to cough ’em up.

  The two pipers are now heading to a competition in Scotland. So they’ll be flying back via Boston, which is one of those 28 valid ports of entry. They’ve called Fish & Wildlife to arrange for the mandatory “inspection” of the bagpipes upon landing at Logan Airport.

  Unfortunately, the official Fish & Wildlife bagpipes inspector is taking a day off that day – she’s visiting her Auntie Mabel, having a seaweed wrap at the spa, whatever. So she won’t be available to inspect the pipes. So she’s told them they’ll have to drive back to New Hampshire and then drive back to Logan the following day for the Fish & Wildlife bagpipes inspection. So she’s taking a day off on Wednesday, and the bagpipers will have to take a day off on Thursday – just to comply with the diktats of the Department of Paperwork.

  Because that’s just the way it is in the Land of the Free. “

 

 

 

You can’t make this stuff up . As always Mr Steyn is today’s required reading