Thursday, January 26, 2017

Economics of Illegal Immigration

The Wall Street Journal just published an article about labor shortages in United States. agricultural, construction companies, restaurants and their complaint about labor shortages due to a shortage of illegal immigrants. They complained how they had to keep increasing wages in order to keep the employees they have.

Throughout history businesses have sought-out cheap labor. It's some of the extremes businesses have taken that brought on the rise of unions, communism, and socialism. Everyone is aware the part slavery played in the early USA and the world. In the USA, agriculture required cheap labor, so they brought in mostly African slaves. Slaves had little value for many industries because they needed higher skilled labor. Even after slavery ended, Africans still did a majority of the field work. This continued until the late 60's when African-Americans became better educated and sought out higher paying jobs.

In the 70's, progressive Democrats began expanding entitlements. Poor people began taking more welfare and college aid. Both of these things began reducing the low pay work force. Businesses such as restaurants, construction, and agriculture began looking for cheap labor to replace their diminishing workforce. They turned to people illegally crossing the southern border. This is not to say that all industries have used this workforce in the past. It became such a problem in the 50's that President Dwight D. Eisenhower deported millions. Then in the 80's, President Reagan gave 5 million illegal aliens amnesty.

Amnesty secured the cheap labor force for a while, but with legalization, those immigrants began seeking out education and higher paying jobs. The never ending cycle had begun once more—businesses once again began looking for cheap labor. The cheapest labor will always be those who are running in fear of the law. Progressives believe the solution is to open the border so there will be a continuous supply of cheap labor. That's an impossibility because of welfare. As long as people can get paid to sit at home, they will never work for wages that are lower or even slightly above their monthly welfare check.

The only way to solve this problem is to increase wages to a point where people will take these manual labor jobs, reduce or remove welfare, and stop making education free. This sounds cruel to progressives, but life is tough and there will always be a demand for low wage workers, as well as manual labor. Every society needs ditch diggers and agriculture workers.

The progressive democrat can't understand that some people don't have the mental capability to do certain jobs. They can't understand that some people enjoy manual labor where there isn't a lot of thinking. But there is a problem that progressives and conservatives alike have contributed to, and that's raising children who don't know the meaning of the hard work. Why are Latinos more willing to do manual labor? It's because they grew up working hard. They didn't have the pleasure of sitting at home all day playing video-games and watching television. Work ethics have to be established early in life.

We live in a society where every parent believes their child must go to college, even when that child would be better served with vocational courses. Forcing these children in college is doing them a disservice because they eventually feel like a failure when they cannot compete with classmates.

Mike Rowe from the TV show Dirty Jobs has become a blue collar hero. He showed the country what jobs are required for people to live as they do in society. He promotes the value of blue collar jobs and that one shouldn't be ashamed because they collect garbage or scrub toilets. Because of all the homeless and people on welfare, we shouldn't have to import labor to clean our toilets and mow our lawns.

Low paying jobs aren't about race, it's about ability and desire. I worked with a man who never accepted a promotion. One day I asked him why and he replied, “Too much responsibility.” There are million of people like him. Often pay isn't judged by how hard you work, but how much responsibility is on your shoulders. The more responsibility you bear, the higher the pay. People in the country illegally can't bear this responsibility because they have broken the law. The greatest responsibility we bear as Americans is to follow the law. When you don't follow the law, you must pay the price. In the case of illegal aliens that price is low paying jobs.

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