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steve2470 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 11:22 AM
Original message
Please educate me about undocumented workers
I really do not know the facts about this issue. I am NOT trying to start a flamewar. I am a good Democrat since 1976 and voted for Kerry in 2004 and have never knowingly voted for Repuke. The RW says they are all bad and ship them home. What's the truth ? Thank you in advance for your time.
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imenja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 11:24 AM
Response to Original message
1. it's a huge subject
you'll need to do some research on the historical origins of the Bracero programs and how US business profit from illegal immigration. I suggest you start with a google search. You can find papers posted on university websites.
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steve2470 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 11:26 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. do you mind posting some bullet points ? maybe a paragraph ?
thanks.
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imenja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 11:37 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. ok
Well, this is a huge simplification, but I'll try. The US has depended on undocumented migrants, from Mexico in particular, throughout the twentieth century. The US government, in coordination with agribusinesses, established Bracero programs where they opened the borders to Mexican migrants during times of labor demand and shut them during times of economic downturn. The INS would then clear out Mexicans and send them home. Migrant workers don't come to the US by accident. Throughout the history of illegal immigration, undocumented workers have been recruited.

Today, immigration laws target migrants themselves and penalize rarely businesses that employ undocumented workers. This week's settlement for Walmart was unusual, yet even that was only 11 million dollars, a drop in the bucket compared to the billions of dollars that company takes in every year. That a huge corporation like Walmart would feel they could risk employing undocumented workers makes clear enforcement provisions have been weak. Businesses employ undocumented workers for the same reason they outsource--cheap labor. Blaming Mexicans makes little sense, since they are not the ones who instigate or benefit from the problem.
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steve2470 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 11:41 AM
Response to Reply #3
5. thank you for your time ! nt
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 11:41 AM
Response to Original message
4. The Cliff Notes version is that
Edited on Sun Mar-20-05 11:42 AM by Warpy
undocumented workers are shipped in by organized crime here and in other countries. They do shit jobs for substandard wages usually paid under the table. They live in appalling conditions, often doing the hot rack things in overcrowded rooms in slums, save every penny they can. They do everything from stoop work in agriculture and the killing in slaughterhouses to apparel sweatshops to restaurant dishwashers and bus boys. They literally may be anywhere menial and dehumanizing work has to be done.

A study done about 15 years ago followed a few of them and found they returned to their country of origin within a few years, usually with enough dollars to enable them to start a very small business when translated into their own currency. Most of them really didn't want to stay here, and who could blame them? We have laws against treating animals the way they're treated.

The real villains in all this are the organized crime people who bring them in (usually risking their lives in the process, especially in hot weather) and the business owners who work them nearly to death for less than minimum wage. Yet all the public outrage is focused on the illegal workers for taking American jobs.


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imenja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 12:01 PM
Response to Reply #4
11. organized crime?
You mean the coyotes? Your post leaves the impression that Tony Soproano and his crowd are behind the whole thing. The villains are the businesses that employ undocumented workers. Without them, there would be no illegal immigration of any significant level.
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blogbear Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 11:44 AM
Response to Original message
6. Great Question and if These Undocumenteds Become Legal and..
Absorbed into our society..Could such a development positively impact somehow the 'health' of futuristic social security?
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 11:54 AM
Response to Reply #6
9. They'd have to have jobs that paid a living wage
We'll all need jobs that pay a living wage, with or without them. Until that happens, Social Security will run the risk of being starved and bennies cut.

Yet there is still enormous unemployment, at least twice what the gummint is admitting to, plus continued downward pressure on wages.
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Wright Patman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 11:54 AM
Response to Reply #6
10. Just the opposite, I think
In terms of the FICA contributions, Mexican and OTM (Other Than Mexican) Nationals using phony SS #s are paying hundreds of billions of dollars into the system which is immediately paid out to today's elderly and by definition they have no way of making a claim on the system themselves down the road since they are engaging in fraud to begin with.

The illegal alien conundrum is a symptom of a larger problem and that is that the Powers That Be would very much like to collapse Canada, the U.S. and Mexico for starters into one entity. This process began with NAFTA.

The problem is that this flies in the face of the extreme nationalistic USA! frenzy these same powers whipped the American public into post-911.

Thus you have the cognitive dissonance of the constant terror alerts over the past four years existing side-by-side with a wide-open southern border (northern, too, for all I know).
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nothingshocksmeanymore Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 11:52 AM
Response to Original message
7. Here's my take. I work in labor law
IIRC, there are fewer than 10 million undocumented workers living in America so it is NOT the epidemic problem some would claim. While many sites laud the COST of these workers, NONE ever comment on the amount of money they pay INTO our system that they will never collect.

What attracts them here are businesses such as the agriculture and hotel/restaurant industries, yet they pay little in the way of sanctions.

People for the American Way has a great fact sheet:

http://www.pfaw.org/pfaw/general/default.aspx?oid=14332...
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marcologico Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-20-05 11:53 AM
Response to Original message
8. They also make handy scapegoats at election time.
As in "let's take away their access to public education, health care, and emergency services" even though they work for practically free and still pay all the taxes (not that they have a choice).
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-21-05 02:34 AM
Response to Original message
12. .
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