jobs

To Increase Wages, Mandate E-Verify, Shrink Labor Market

Democratic presidential candidates have unanimously embraced the $15 federal minimum wage. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi threw her support behind the wage hike that would more than double the current $7.25 rate. Pelosi claims that not only would the wage increase give Americans more money in their paycheck, but would also boost the gross domestic product. When people have more purchasing power, they’ll spend more, and, predicted Pelosi, the GDP will therefore rise.

But a far more credible economic source than Pelosi made the opposite calculation. The Congressional Budget Office calculated that overall the $15 hourly wage would “would reduce the nation’s output slightly.” The CBO found that as many as 27 million workers, assuming they remained employed, could benefit. On the other hand, up to 3.7 million workers might lose their jobs as employers respond to higher overhead. Goods and services costs to consumers would inevitably rise.

That’s the thing about the $15 minimum wage hype – only one side of the story is told. A wage increase won’t be effective if employers don’t hire or if they dramatically reduce their hourly payrolls to adjust for the steep bump.

Moreover, the $15 wage is an artificial solution to increasing Americans’ paychecks. The lasting correction is to tighten the labor pool. The federal government can tighten the employment market in two ways: first, reduce the 1 million-plus legal immigrants who, as employment-authorized lawful permanent residents, enter the labor force annually.

Further, the government could reduce the roughly 750,000 temporary guest workers that come to the U.S. to perform an assortment of jobs that, for the most part, Americans would do, assuming a fair wage. The second tightening variable, and more immediate way to drive up wages, is to use E-Verify, the online program that ensures only legally authorized workers hold U.S. jobs.

To analyze how large influxes of immigrant workers, in this case, construction workers, impact the market, the Los Angeles Times studied the Southern California building trade. The Times wrote that over a few decades, construction workers went from being majority union, and majority U.S.-born, to majority immigrant. In the article conclusion, journalist Natalie Kitroeff wrote, “Nonunion shops made aggressive inroads into home building with workers who had less experience. The result: Today slightly more than 1 in 10 construction workers are in a union, compared with 4 in 10 in the 1970s….an influx of immigrants who would work for less made it easier for builders to quickly shift to a nonunion labor force…” A footnote: in a relatively short time, immigration played a leading role in eliminating solid, blue-collar United Brotherhood of Carpenters jobs that paid middle-class wages, offered health care, paid vacations and pensions.

But since major immigration reductions are not in the immediate future, the government could help by passing mandatory E-Verify. If passed, the program that would prevent unscrupulous employers from hiring illegal aliens and slow the flow of unlawful job-seeking foreign nationals, once the word was out. A tighter labor market results in an increase in wages for U.S. workers.

E-Verify has the overwhelming support of Americans and of companies like Costco that have used it for years. Early this year, a Houston Chronicle editorial made the interesting point that E-Verify would not only help legally present workers keep jobs, but also would protect exploited illegal immigrant workers from low pay and harsh conditions that, because of deportation fears, they’re afraid to report. With E-Verify, the onus is on employers to hire only legal workers.

For all the ballyhoo about the $15 minimum wage, nothing is ever said about tightening the labor market through lower immigration or mandating E-Verify, two solutions that would help the U.S. pay rate, still stuck at 1970 levels, to increase through normal market functions.

After ICE Raids, US Citizens Flock To Jobs

Less than one week after ICE raided 7 food processing facilities in Mississippi apprehending nearly 700 illegal workers, American citizens are rushing to freshly-available jobs.

Koch Foods is headquartered in Chicago but maintains a chicken processing facility in Mississippi that employed 243 of the 680 undocumented Latino workers arrested in the raids last Thursday. Koch has since collaborated with the Mississippi Department of Employment Security (MDES), holding a job fair to recruit new, legal, workers, according to the Associated Press.

The fair raked in 200 applications before noon, according to local media. The company says it will require applicants to present two forms of identification before being hired, according to CNN. MDES will also vet all Mississippi workers for legality using the state’s E-Verify system, according to USA Today.

A Koch spokesman did not directly correlate the job fair with the raids. Instead he told the AP that holding job fairs is routine for the chicken processing plant, especially given America’s strong current economy. (RELATED: CNN’s Tapper: Is Trump Not Getting Enough Credit For The Economy?)

Job fairs “are part of normal efforts to employ,” Gilliand told AP. “In this environment of relative full employment, most businesses are looking for qualified applicants; Koch is no different.”

Dianne Bell of the Mississippi Department of Employment Security was involved in coordinating the job fair. She says that the immigration raid and Koch’s interest in recruitment of new legal workers went hand in hand.

“They reached out to us the very same day [as the raids],” Bell told USA Today, speaking on the collaborative recruitment effort between Koch and the MDES.

Those who are now seeking employment in the raided facilities cite high wages and frequent pay as reasons to take the exhausting job of a food processing worker, according to USA Today.

Last week’s ICE raids are “believed to be the largest single-state immigration enforcement operation in our nation’s history,” says to US Attorney for the Southern District Mike Hurst, according to CNN.

Many media outlets and commentators are attributing the raids to the Trump Administration or a racist agenda. However, acting ICE director Matt Albence maintained that immigration laws “are not new laws, nor is the enforcement of them new,” according to CNN.

HB 2015 work session set for Monday at 1pm

Alert date: 
2019-06-06
Alert body: 

This is it, folks!

In 2014, Oregon voters said NO to driver licenses to anyone without proof of legal presence. But, the party in charge at the Oregon Legislature is so arrogant they are willfully working to overthrow the will of the people.

HB 2015 will have a work session Monday, June 10 at 1:00pm. Your calls, emails, tweets and Facebook posts are critical to shine a light on this bill. We can stop this - with YOUR help. Have you seen our billboards across the state? Take a photo and post on your social media page.

All the information you need is located here.

The answer to ag labor shortages

Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies makes a persuasive pitch for mechanization in agriculture, ending dependence on humans to do stoop labor and other exhausting manual chores on farms.

In his blog of April 26, “A Robot in Every Field, he says:

“… An individual farmer is understandably concerned with the next crop, but policymakers should have a longer time horizon. Americans get wealthier when productivity grows, and in agriculture that means, among other things, the development and adoption of labor-saving technologies.  …

“Foreign-worker programs that import stoop labor represent an intervention by government specifically designed to prevent the inevitable rise in farm-labor costs in modern societies caused by urbanization and increased employment opportunities elsewhere.

“Increasing wages and benefits will undoubtedly help draw some people into (or back into) the farm-labor force, but it's true that few Americans are going to cut broccoli all day in the hot sun. Even Mexicans aren't going into farm work anymore; as two scholars write, 'Mexico is following the pattern of countries around the world: as its income rises, workers shift out of farm work into other sectors.'

“The solution isn't to give in to the lobbyists and scour ever-more remote corners of the world for people still willing to submit to a medieval-work regime. Instead, we need to allow Julian Simon's scarcity/innovation dance to proceed, so that robots continue to replace humans in the fields. In fact, if the White House feels the need to service the ag lobby, why not propose mechanization-loan guarantees to help small farmers wean themselves off stoop labor? Rather than promise a chicken in every pot, why not a robot in every field?”

Read the complete blog here.

Later, Neil Munro, of Breitbart.com, gathered comments on Krikorian’s proposal, and, in his article of April 28, also describes the current progress of mechanization in agriculture.  His article can be viewed here.

Statue of Liberty Declares: STOP IMMIGRATION!

by  Tim Murray

Maybe you haven’t heard the terrible news. The United States, like almost every nation on the planet, is in serious population overshoot. This is a vastly different world than the one Emma Lazarus lived in. Hers was an America of seemingly unlimited resources. Ours is one of Limits to Growth.

Yes, there are still vast tracts of America that are sparsely populated. But it is not about how many people a nation can contain but how many it can sustain. The United States has a limited ecological carrying capacity, and there is every indication that it has been exceeded.

That is not only a disaster for us, but a catastrophe for the world. Put it this way. The very last thing that Mother Nature needs is another American consumer. Migration from less developed countries to developed nations like ours has a “multiplier” effect. The average migrant to the United States, for example, quadruples his GHG emissions upon arrival, and this applies to the consumption of resources as well. This is not surprising. After all, most immigrants come here precisely because they want to consume more. They want to enjoy the good life, or at least a materially better life, for themselves and their children.

To prospective immigrants I would say this. Our working poor and IT workers do not need your competition. Our bulging prisons and crowded classrooms cannot accommodate you. Our fruit and vegetable crops do not need you to harvest them. Our service and hospitality sector does not need your labour, nor does the home construction industry. We have Americans to do those jobs. All they need is a decent wage, and without immigration, there is a good chance that they would get it.

The era of smokestack industries and family farms is over. The era of A. I. and robots is soon to unfold. The demand for menial labor will plummet. We will be hard put to employ our working poor, never mind the global poor that Emma Lazarus and her modern day equivalents would welcome. In other words, your services will not be required.

So here’s some advice. Turn around and go back from whence you came. If things are still too rough at home, chances are that you can find suitable sanctuary in a country located in the same region. And if you do manage to make it back, could you please convey this message to your compatriots: Take responsibility for your family size. Understand that scarcity and the conflict that issues from it are in a large part a consequence of your nation’s runaway population growth. If your nation cannot grow the pie, it can, through aggressive family planning programs, increase the size of per capita “slices” by reducing the number of diners at the table.

I think you are a victim of a misunderstanding. The Statue of Liberty was meant to tell you that liberty, democracy and the rule of law can set the citizens of your country free. It was a prescription for good government, not an invitation to come and settle here. The Lazarus poem was an add-on twenty years after the statue was erected, and not congruent with the statement that the Statue was making. Immigration and liberty are apples and oranges.

In fact, higher population density requires more regulations and laws. Population growth is inversely correlated to liberty. As Isaac Asimov said in his famous “bathroom” metaphor. If there is only one tenant and one bathroom in an apartment, the tenant has “freedom of the bathroom”. He can access the bathroom at any time. But once another tenant or tenants come to share that same apartment, the original occupant must compete to use the bathroom. Rules of use or etiquette ensue. Tenants have no unrestricted freedom to use the bathroom whenever they like. And the more tenants who move in, the more restricted the residents will be.

Perhaps a name change would clarify the message. You have heard of the Statute of Limitations. I think Lady Liberty should be rechristened as the Statue of Limitations, and her torch be replaced by a stop sign.


Published by the Council of European Canadians
Read the full article here.

Good News from the Immigration Reform Law Institute

Alert date: 
2019-03-07
Alert body: 

Finally, the 11th circuit court accurately defined what a so called "DACA" recipient really is - an ILLEGAL ALIEN!

Read the IRLI Press Release.


 

Washington Post: Farm Industry Is Being Forced to Replace Illegal Workforce

Excerpts:

The paper [Washington Post] reported February 21:

... With the election of Trump, employers said they knew that finding undocumented workers would probably become even more difficult. One Washington state farmer said he watched as his entire pool of undocumented workers crossed the border into Canada after Trump’s inauguration, fearing deportation. Another farmer, failing to find domestic workers in 2017, formed a partnership with a local prison, hiring detainees to work the fields as part of a voluntary work program.

Farm companies are importing more temporary visa workers via the H-2A program. In 2016, farm companies hired 165,000 temporary workers via the H2A program. In 2018, the number rose to 242,000 H-2A workers, who are expected to return home after 10 months of work.

Apple farms in Oregon are also looking to machines to curb their reliance on migrants to pick the most profitable fruit:  [photo]

The two articles in the Washington Post are notable because they recognize the impact of cheap-labor migration on U.S. technology and economics.

Most articles by establishment media outlets focus on the demands of U.S. employers and of foreign migrants and ignore the deeply damaging impact illegal and legal migration on Americans’ wages, salaries, productivity, and technological development.

For example, many major U.S. companies ally with foreign outsourcing firms to keep at least 1.5 million foreign college-graduates — including at least 650,000 H-1B workers — in the jobs sought by U.S. college graduates. That business strategy is made possible by government labor policy, and it spikes Wall Street values, shrinks salaries, and steers middle-class Americans away from technology jobs.

Overall, the U.S. agriculture industry is heavily mechanized and automated. High-tech machinery allows farmers and a few workers to plant, help, and harvest vast acreages of row crops, such as wheat, corn, potatoes, carrots, and soybeans. The huge harvests feed Americans and many people abroad.

The U.S. dairy industry is partly automated but lags behind European dairy farms who have shrunk their labor costs by buying cow-milking robots. Dairy farmers are lobbying to be allowed into the H-2A program and complain that government-set milk prices are too low for them to afford the cow-milking robots.

But there is little automation in the business of picking fruit, such as peaches, apples, and strawberries. Cheap illegal labor has allowed farm companies to ignore technology, but that strategy has run into a ditch.

Farms in Mexico and South America are using their expert managers, extra sunshine, and cheaper labor to deliver more food to their countries and to export more food to the U.S., so cutting into U.S. farmers’ share of the U.S. market.

That international competition is also forcing American farms to consider automating their harvests.

The asparagus industry shows the connection between labor costs and automation.

In California and Idaho, asparagus is picked by migrants carrying a long tool. In Michigan, where there are fewer migrants, farms use buggies to help a team of several migrants pick the crop faster. In Europe, where migrants are expensive, companies are trying to use bigger machines that can pick the asparagus crop with few workers.

Swamp Swallows Trump

By Joe Guzzardi

President Trump wants more people to come to the United States! With my own two ears, I heard the President say on back-to-back days that he wants historically high immigration levels, and more people that he foolishly claims “we need.”

Since President Trump was referring to more legal immigration, one could be forgiven for thinking that he had never heard of chain migration where eventually one legal immigrant petitions an average of 3.5 family members to come to the U.S. But analysts who follow and study the nation’s suicidal immigration laws and their loopholes know that President Trump is fully aware of chain migration and its consequences.

Last year, in his State of the Union address, Trump touted ending chain migration. At various times in 2018 he enthusiastically supported Reforming American Immigration for a Stronger Economy (RAISE), legislation from senators Tom Cotton (R-AR) and David Purdue (R-GA), that favored skill-based over the current family-based immigration which drives more than 75 percent of the nation’s population growth. Assuming the status quo continues, by 2065, America will see an increase in population from today’s 328 million to more than 400 million.

Ignore for the moment the effect adding more work-authorized immigrants has on job competition and stagnant wages, and concentrate on the practical significance of adding ever-more people to the ever-swelling population of our country. Of course, adding more and more people to an already overpopulated country is something that apparently neither President Trump, nor private citizen Trump, has a clue about.

Whether President Trump is in the White House, Trump Tower or Mar-a-Lago, he’s isolated from the everyday reality of getting from one place to another. Among the many headaches the President doesn’t endure that are all too familiar to the rest of us are paralyzing Beltway traffic jams, maddening Florida I-95 traffic jams, and the stifling, undependable DC Metro or NYC Subway. President Trump will never be forced to, as I recently was, make a half-mile sprint and then jump on a tram through the sprawling Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport, carry-on luggage in hand, in a failed and frustrating effort to make my connecting flight.

When Trump returns to private citizen status, he will travel on his personal 757 equipped with 24-karat gold seat belts, the $100 million T-Bird as he lovingly calls his jumbo jet. In American presidential history, President Trump is the only office holder for which Air Force One represents a downgrade. For those shorter jaunts, the President owns a $7 million Sikorsky S-76 helicopter. The President sails through city streets preceded by a Secret Service manned motorcade.

But for most of us, more people means we’ll have to deal with more cars and buses that will hit the road, generating more traffic and inevitably more sprawl. Hard to believe though it is, air travel will become more uncomfortable as airports expand, and airline manufacturers produce larger seating capacity commercial jets.

On immigration and specifically on more immigration, President Trump is rejecting Americans’ wishes. A survey of 1,000 voters after the 2018 mid-term election found that 53 percent want to reduce legal immigration from its annual level of more than 1 million, while only 30 percent of voters want immigration increases.

With President Trump’s promotion of more immigration to grow our population even larger, it appears the Swamp has swallowed whole the country’s Chief Executive.

-------------------------------------------

Joe Guzzardi

Joe Guzzardi is a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist who writes about immigration and related social issues. Joe joined Progressives for Immigration Reform in 2018 as an analyst after a ten-year career directing media relations for Californians for Population Stabilization, where he also was a Senior Writing Fellow. A native Californian, Joe now lives in Pennsylvania. Contact him at jguzzardi@pfirdc.org

Read the full article.

Whatever happened to the “Hire American” promise?

Trump supporters and others were shocked to hear Pres. Trump ad lib, in the State of the Union address, his wish to bring in immigrants in record-breaking numbers.  Worse, he repeated the idea again the next day!

It seems that along with bringing American-run businesses back to the U.S., employers want to continue using foreign workers instead of U.S. citizen workers, and they’re lining up the President to assure they can keep on using cheap foreign labor in the U.S. at the expense of U.S. citizens.

Abuses of the H-1 visa program have been going on for many years, especially in the computer technology field, but also in other fields.

Here’s a good summary of the current situation: 

Do we really need so many foreign tech workers?

By Froma Harrop, syndicated columnist, Feb. 7, 2019

Americans don't usually think of technical professionals as "guest workers," yet at any one time, there are more than a half-million foreigners holding tech jobs in the U.S. They are here thanks to the H-1B visa program. H-1B, so the official spiel goes, addresses an alleged shortage of "highly skilled" Americans to fill jobs "requiring specialized knowledge."

Growing evidence, however, points to companies' using the program to replace perfectly qualified American workers with cheaper ones from elsewhere. A new report published by the Atlantic Council documents the abuses. The authors are Ron Hira, a political scientist at Howard University, and Bharath Gopalaswamy, director of the Atlantic Council's South Asia Center.

Among their criticisms:

—Virtually any white-collar job can be taken by an H-1B visa holder. About 70 percent of them are held not by what we consider tech workers but by teachers, accountants and salespeople, among others.

(Denver Public Schools employs teachers on H-1B visas. During a strike, the district actually threatened to report participating foreigners to immigration authorities. It later apologized.)

"By every objective measure," Hira and Gopalaswamy write, "most H-1B workers have no more than ordinary skills, skills that are abundantly available in the U.S. labor market."

U.S. colleges graduate 50 percent more students in engineering and in computer and information science than are hired in those fields every year, according to a study by the Economic Policy Institute.

—Employers don't have to show they have a labor shortage to apply. They don't even have to try recruiting an American to fill the job.

Cutting labor costs is clearly the paramount "need." In Silicon Valley, computer systems analysts make on average just over $116,000 a year. But companies can hire H-1B workers at a lower skill level, paying them only about $77,000 a year to do the same work, the report says.

And it's not unheard-of for companies to ask American workers to train the H-1B workers taking their jobs. "60 Minutes" featured Robert Harrison, a senior telecom engineer at the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center. Asked whether training his replacement felt like digging his own grave, Harrison responded:

"It feels worse than that. It feels like not only am I digging the grave but I'm getting ready to stab myself in the gut and fall into the grave."

Apparently, the argument that "tech jobs need filling" has, in many cases, oozed to "we want cheaper foreigners." The H-1B program demands a major overhaul.

Read the entire article at:  https://www.jacksonsun.com/story/opinion/2019/02/07/do-we-really-need-so-many-foreign-tech-workers/2801047002/

Migrant caravans – refugees or job-seekers?

Many newspapers portray the migrant caravans as refugees escaping rampant crime and corruption in their home countries.   But are these migrants truly refugees?   Here’s a more realistic report from the Dallas News, with commentary from Neil Munro, one the most knowledgeable writers on immigration issues.  The article shows that most of the migrants are job-seekers and will be competing with citizens for jobs, undercutting wage levels in the U.S. and adding to the already-unsustainable population growth that is triggered primarily by immigration.

Dallas News: U.S. Job Offers Pull Caravan Migrants to the Border

By Neil Munro, Breitbart.com, November 14, 2018

https://www.breitbart.com/immigration/2018/11/14/dallas-news-u-s-job-offers-pull-caravan-migrants-to-the-border/

Caravan migrants in Mexico told the Dallas News they are migrating towards blue-collar jobs in the United States.

The economic explanations contradict the claims by pro-migration lawyers, progressives and by most reporters that the migrants are helplessly fleeing from crime in their homelands. …

[Following are the concluding 6 paragraphs of the article]

Americans have long assumed that companies and investors who are trying to fill lower-wage jobs in a tight national labor-market would be pressured to offer higher wages and to invest in labor-saving machinery.

But investors do not need to offer higher wages or raise productivity if the government allows them to employ mobile workers from outside the national labor market and also supplements the migrants’ low wages with hidden taxpayer subsidies of aid, welfare and free schooling for their children. Also, the extra inflow of migrants provides investors and government agencies with many extra customers for food, autos, apartments, and government services.

A tacit alliance of progressives and investors, Democrats and Republicans, has largely blocked Trump’s efforts to help ordinary Americans by curbing migration into U.S. workplaces and neighborhoods.

Washington’s economic policy of using migration to boost economic growth shifts wealth from young people towards older people by flooding the market with cheap white-collar and blue-collar foreign labor. That flood of outside labor spikes profits and Wall Street values by cutting salaries for manual and skilled labor offered by blue-collar and white-collar employees.

The policy also drives up real estate prices, widens wealth-gaps, reduces high-tech investment, increases state and local tax burdens, hurts kids’ schools and college education, pushes Americans away from high-tech careers, and sidelines at least five million marginalized Americans and their families, including many who are now struggling with opioid addictions.

Immigration also pulls investment and wealth away from heartland states because coastal investors can more easily hire and manage the large immigrant populations living in the coastal states.

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