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Sergei Shvetsov
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Sergei Shvetsov

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Shaun King asks a fair question about Donald Trump's plan to deport eleven million people over a two-year period. Answering it feels a bit like doing a sociopathic sort of "What If?," but sometimes it's good to see what's actually involved in a policy proposal.

If you want to deport all of these people, you'll have to do a few things:

(1) Figure out who you want to deport.
(2) Round them up.
(3) Transport them to wherever you're deporting them to.
(4) Dump them there and get them to stay.

The biggest things that probably aren't blindingly obvious are:

- Identifying people is harder than it sounds, since it's not like everyone has proof of citizenship tattooed on their arms. You'll have to put people in the field, and they'll have to have a lot of leeway to deal with ambiguous cases. Which is another way of saying they need the power to decree someone an outsider and deport them.

- Rounding people up is easier than it sounds, Ben Carson to the contrary. The police have more guns, and if you're already at the point where the local field commander is willing to say "this entire neighborhood is probably deportable," it turns out that rounding people up and/or shooting resisters isn't very challenging at all. Most people will stop shooting when you threaten to kill their families, and the ones that don't, well, you just kill them and their families.

- Transporting people is much harder than it sounds. 450,000 people per month is a lot; even with serious packing, you can only fit about 80 people into a standard boxcar or truck; a typical modern train might have 140 boxcars or so, which means it can only transport about 11,000 people, and loading them takes time. Unfortunately, people are somewhat scattered out, so if you want this to work, you'll need to use trucks and so on to deliver people to staging areas, where you can store them for a while until a train is ready. Fortunately, there's a lot of prior art on how to concentrate people in a small space while they're getting ready to be loaded on trains.

- Mass-deporting people to an area you don't control is harder than it seems, because the people who control that area are likely to object. You'd probably have to conquer and subjugate Mexico as a first step, and then set up receiving camps on the other end. Unloading areas would have to be fairly heavily armed and guarded, of course, to keep people from attacking you; the logistics are somewhat similar to the staging camps on the sending side, only you have to worry less about killing people.

- Running this is going to be really expensive, so you might consider finding ways for the project to help pay for itself. So long as you have people concentrated in one place, maybe have them do labor as well? They can pay for their own deportation!

So I suppose the good news is that we can answer Shaun's question fairly straightforwardly, because this has been done before and we do know what it looks like. We don't quite have the right expertise in the US, because none of our past mass-deportation efforts were quite at this scale per month; the transatlantic slave trade moved roughly this many people over three centuries, the Trail of Tears moved only about 16,500 people, and the internment of Japanese civilians during WWII only about 110,000. But outside the US, there's much more experience with it; probably the world's top expert on it was Adolf Eichmann (1906-1962), who ran a program very much like this which managed to move people at about this rate. 

Trump's team may be interested in checking him out; there's a tremendous amount written about his system, I'm sure it would be very helpful. And as I noted in a comment below, the design of this program really wasn't easy; they had to iterate through quite a lot of trial solutions before they could come up with a final one. You should always save work by studying prior art when you can.
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Sergei Shvetsov

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How to automatically load #SSH keys into #Pageant ( #PuTTY ) on #Windows boot.
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Quick and easy way to install the latest version of percona-toolkit on Ubuntu.
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#Android 4.3 OTA just landed on my Galaxy #Nexus. Here's a quick walk through on how to (re)root latest #JellyBean from OS X using adb, fastboot, CWM Recovery and SuperSU.
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+Thibaut B.
I think you will find the answer to your question within the blog post.
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Enable "Developer options" on Android
Quick tip on how to enable hidden "Developer options" menu in #android .
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#CheatSheet and workflow for keeping #brew formulae up-to-date and your #OSX cellar clean.
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Automatically login into #Ubuntu user account on boot from command line ( #CLI ).
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Quick tip : Add current time stamp to a file name from #linux command line.
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Sergei Shvetsov's profile photoomid mohajerani's profile photo
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fine Sergei :) Doing some Asterisk and Nagios stuff in IRAN . 
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Finally saw Oppo Find5 at Android Nation in Jakarta. 5,500,000 IDR for 16GB version, a bit too expensive if you ask me. #Find5
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I have been seeing +Oppo Find 5 billboards and TV ads in Jakarta. Wonder how much it will be selling for here... #Find5  
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My sentiments exactly... I guess we'll wait and see. Everyone here is still excited about S4 and HTC One, so nobody is paying attention to Find5.
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IT Consultant | Sysadmin | Programmer Analyst | Dance Instructor
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Excellent hotel at the base of Mt. Fuji, with absolutely gorgeous garden. Fantastic food, evening entertainment, public baths, shop, and most importantly, view of Fujisan.
Public - 2 weeks ago
reviewed 2 weeks ago