Monday, March 27, 2006

Illegal immigration = cheap labor

It seems every news story about illegal immigration I hear or read contains at least one sentence tantamount to this odd phrase -- “they (meaning illegal aliens/guest workers) are here doing work Americans are unwilling to do.” It doesn’t matter if it's NPR or CBS, the Richmond Times-Dispatch or the Washington Post. They all are using that language.

Well, it seems to me that obligatory disclaimer is propaganda, and little more. Even stories willing to challenge the bizarre Bush administration's border policy, which is happy to wink at America's mounting illegal immigration problem, don’t seem willing to question whether our society truly needs these hungry workers from parts unknown.

Moreover, are we to blindly accept the presumption that the American economy’s need for these foreign workers trumps other concerns, such as national security, or worries about the effect this phenomenon is having on the take-home pay of American citizens?

Why don’t the news stories say what's what? Aren't undocumented workers frequently willing to work less money? America's labor force is more than willing to work for a living wage. Then again, desperate people will always do what they must.

Bottom Line: Isn’t it also true that lowering the standard wage for blue collar jobs in this country is a lot more important to the Bush administration and its corporate bedfellows than guarding our borders?

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