For a conservative, observing the average liberal mind is an exercise in disorientation. In the photo lab of reason, they appear to have gotten only the negatives. Although we believe in civility and dialogue, speaking with a doctrinaire left-winger often proves meaningless unless you intend to write dialogue for Bizarro World. Now, another such moment is upon us. Judging from the liberal media, the newest talking points have apparently gone forward in the bid to bludgeon Middle America into accepting amnesty: The fact that the Obama administration has arrested fewer illegal immigrants than anytime in the last 40 years proves his policies are working, so we must now grant amnesty to all illegal immigrants living in the United States.

While the mainstream media clearly have an agenda, it is rarely so well illustrated as in a Washington Post story from December 5. “The Border Patrol apprehended 327,577 illegal crossers along the U.S.-Mexico border in fiscal year 2011, which ended Sept. 30,” it noted, “numbers not seen since Richard Nixon was president.”

For most Americans, fewer apprehensions would show a deteriorating state of enforcement, rather than rousing success. But not to the experts of the Beltway media. The journalists insist this proves the border is more secure, because fewer illegals are attempting to cross.

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The story then abruptly pivots: “Such a steep drop in illegal crossings gives supporters of immigration reform ammunition to argue that now is a good time to tackle the issue.”

Thus is laid bare the liberal agenda: pretend the border is secure, then press for amnesty in an election year.

As if on cue, a number of other media outlets have advanced the mindless meme. Nathan Pippenger at The New Republic has an article explaining “Why Fewer Arrests Means Better Border Enforcement.” He quotes a report from the Soros-funded Center for American Progress that claims, “in some major sectors,” some Border Patrol agents “believe they are apprehending 80-plus percent of the traffic.” Wow, some agents say they nab 80 percent of illegals in some major sectors somewhere at least some of the time, they think. How reassuring. For TNR the low number of arrests means the border is somehow now “secured.”

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The Washington Post was more honest (for once): “the U.S. government has no idea how many are not caught.”

Bear in mind, these unapprehended aliens come to join the 13 million illegal Americans here already — a huge and growing body. The hundreds of thousands of new illegals every year compounds the fact that “Hispanics remain by far the fastest-growing group in the nation,” primarily through a high birthrate of anchor babies.

Although one could hardly think of a more deplorable state of parenthood than having children so they can give you U.S. citizenship, the anchor babies — and their anchor baby mamas — are being glorified in the media, as wel. USA Today just ran a tearjerker of a story insisting, “Deportations Tear Some Families Apart.” It recounts the plight of a deportee who left her children with relatives while she was sent home to Mexico.

As usual, liberal emotion gives way to concrete reality. Has it occurred to the reporter than parents willing to have babies to gain U.S. citizenship, and willing to abandon their children in hopes of clinging to it, may not make the sturdiest citizens?

The fact is, if border crossings have plummeted, it is because of the poor economy. While it is a fact Barack Obama’s policies created this environment, it is hardly a matter worth bragging about.

The most unreported fact is that many of those who choose not to enter the United States, or are deported from it, end up living the Mexican Dream. The Post reported the story of 28-year-old Juan Carlos Vela, a man who got as far as Mexicali, Mexico, before deciding not to cross the border. In his new home, he “found a job making $75 a week in a brick factory, twice as much as the going wage for similar work down south in his home state of Durango, where he said there have been so many drug cartel gun battles lately ‘I can’t let my daughters outside.’” Nor is he alone. The Houston Chronicle reported in 2009 of numerous cases where deportees used the skills they learned in the United States to become prosperous business owners in Mexico, in the process rejuvenating their entire family villages.

The Post reports on Vela’s epiphany to stay south of the border. “’Mexicali seems pretty quiet; I like it here,’ Vela said. ‘Might as well forget about the American dream and get on with my life.’”

It would be in both the Mexican and the American national interest to encourage as many of his fellow countrymen as possible to come to the same conclusion.