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|VOL. 39, NO. 10||P.O. BOX 618, ALTON, ILLINOIS 62002||MAY 2006|
|Ripoff of American Workers and Taxpayers|
According to the Pew Hispanic Center, illegal aliens are less than 5% of our labor force. Even if every one of the illegal aliens in our country played hooky from his job on May 1, the overwhelming majority of those same types of jobs would be worked by millions of American citizens. All over the country, American citizens flipped hamburgers in fast-food shops, washed dishes in restaurants, changed sheets in hotels, mowed lawns, trimmed shrubs, picked produce, drove taxis, replaced roofs on houses, and did all kinds of construction work. Americans are quite willing to work unpleasant, menial, tiresome, and risky jobs, but not for Third World wages.
An employment service in Mobile, Alabama received an "urgent request" in April to fill 270 job openings from contractors who were hired to rebuild and clear areas of Alabama devastated by Hurricane Katrina. The agency immediately sent 70 laborers and construction workers to three job sites.
After two weeks on the job, the men were fired by employers who told them "the Mexicans had arrived" and were willing to work for lower wages. The Americans had been promised $10 an hour, but the employers preferred Mexicans who would work for less. Employment agency manager Linda Swope told the Washington Times, "When they told the guys they would not be needed, they actually cried . . . and we cried with them. This is a shame."
Ms. Swope said that employment agencies throughout Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi all face similar problems because an estimated 30,000 men from Mexico and Central and South America, many in crowded buses and trucks, came into those three states after Hurricane Katrina, willing to work for less than whatever was paid to American citizens.
Meanwhile, President Bush signed the Katrina Emergency Assistance Act extending for 13 weeks the unemployment benefits to Americans displaced by Katrina. Employers get the benefit of cheap foreign labor while you and I provide taxpayer handouts to the guys whom the government allowed to be displaced from jobs they were eager to take.
There is no penalty on employers who replace Americans with illegal aliens at lower pay. Homeland Security even announced it has suspended the sanctioning of employers who hire illegal aliens, and President Bush suspended the Davis-Bacon Act, which requires local contractors to pay "prevailing" wages.
A study published by the National Bureau of Economic Research reported that the surge of immigration in the 1980s and 1990s lowered the wages of our own high school dropouts by 8.2%. The surge has accelerated since that report was issued.
The Congressional Budget Office reported that 60% of Mexican and Central American workers in the United States in 2004 lacked a high-school diploma. The Kennedy-McCain-Bush guest worker plan would import more uneducated, unskilled workers, and thereby deny our own high-school dropouts (of whom we have too many) the opportunity to get started in building their lives in the labor force.
We are threatened that the cost of lettuce will rise precipitously if we don't continue to import Mexican agricultural workers. But a farm worker gets only 6 or 7 cents out of a $1 head of lettuce, so even if the pay doubles consumers would hardly notice the difference.
On the other hand, the costs the taxpayers are forced to pay for social benefits for low-paid workers are astronomical. The National Research Council reports that an immigrant to the United States without a high-school diploma consumes $89,000 more in government services than he pays in taxes during his lifetime.
Low-paid illegal aliens obviously pay very little taxes, but they cash in on all sorts of benefits paid by other taxpayers, such as schooling for their children, emergency health care, housing subsidies, Earned Income Tax Credit, and law enforcement. If the 20 million illegals are legalized, they will also become eligible for Medicaid, and that's a real break-the-bank prospect.
The Bush Administration made big news in April by a sting operation on one employer with 1,200 illegal workers. Those arrests were just politics.
Two federal agencies, the Internal Revenue Service and the Social Security Administration, are sitting on millions of names and addresses of people using bogus Social Security numbers, but they are keeping that information secret from law enforcement. One internal study found that a restaurant company had submitted 4,100 duplicate Social Security numbers for workers. Other firms submit inaccurate names or numbers for nearly all their employees. One child's Social Security number was used 742 times by workers in 42 states.
These figures don't even count the rapidly growing underground economy, in which millions of illegal aliens are paid in off-the-books cash. That enables both employer and employee to avoid paying taxes, and enables employers to avoid paying workers' compensation, unemployment compensation, and assorted other taxes.
If the Internal Revenue Service collected all the taxes that should be paid by the underground economy, our current budget deficit would disappear overnight, according to the Bear Stearns study released last year. The Americans who pay taxes are giving a free ride to those who are not paying taxes, and a 7-cent increase in the price of lettuce should not be on our worry list.
Bush should have gone to the Arizona border where American citizens really need a fence to protect themselves, their children, their animals and their property from the hundreds of illegal aliens who tramp across their land every night. Bush thus gave the back of his hand to the 88% of Republican House Members who voted to secure our borders against the invasion of criminals, smugglers of illegal drugs with their armed escorts, smugglers of thirsty humans in crowded vans, and Other Than Mexicans (OTMs) who obviously aren't coming here to pick strawberries.
While Bush was closeted in a plush foreign resort hotel, the people who support his plan rather than the bill passed by the House demonstrated in the streets and the schools, flying the U.S. flag upside down subordinate to the Mexican flag, and carrying placards asserting that Mexico owns southwestern United States. Bush tearfully described the illegal aliens as "living in the shadows," but in fact hundreds of thousands of them paraded in the bright sunshine carrying signs with their demands such as "No amnesty, no peace."
During the 2004 campaign, Bush secretly mailed a campaign video to Latino voters. The video shows Bush waving a Mexican flag and saying in his own voice: "About 15 years before the Civil War, much of the American West was northern Mexico. The people who lived there weren't called Latinos or Hispanics. They were Mexican citizens, until all that land became part of the United States. After that, many of them were treated as foreigners in their own land." The Los Angeles Times accurately explained (4-2-06): Bush "essentially described millions of Americans who populate his home state as the true foreigners in someone else's native land."
At a closed meeting of conservatives in Washington, D.C., a Bush representative tried to deny that Bush is advocating amnesty, but a participant retorted, "His dispute is not with us; it's with the dictionary." The additional comment that "we don't believe the President any more" elicited spontaneous applause.
In another semantic deception, Bush said in Cancun that he is committed to signing a "comprehensive immigration bill. And by 'comprehensive,' I mean not only a bill that has border security in it, but a bill that has a worker permit program in it. That's an important part of having a border that works."
That statement is false, a non sequitur, and offensive to the intelligence and wishes of the American people. Our experience with the 1986 law proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that amnesty destroys border security and quadruples the number trying to enter the U.S. illegally. A 2006 amnesty would be exactly what Rep. Bob Beauprez (R-CO) predicted: "the biggest magnet ever, . . . a dinner bell, 'come one, come all.'"
Five illegals who received amnesty in 1986 subsequently participated in the attack on the World Trade Center in 1993. One of them, the terrorist Mahmud "The Red" Abouhalima, a New York City taxi driver who got amnesty as an agricultural worker, used his newly legal status to travel to Afghanistan for terrorist training and then return to attack us.
Even the use of the word "comprehensive" is odious. For 20 years, those of us who have fought education issues know that "comprehensive" is the code word used to conceal from parents the fact that sex education includes teaching kids in coed classrooms how to use condoms.
Likewise, "comprehensive" border security means concealing from the public that it will legalize the illegals who are already in our country and give worker permits to many more foreigners to come in, while giving us only pie-in-the-sky promises about closing our borders to illegal entry.
George W. Bush will never again run for office, but the Republicans who will run for office in 2006 and in the future cannot afford to allow the Republican Party to become the party of corporations seeking cheap labor subsidized by the U.S. taxpayers. Economics 101 teaches that an increase in low-paid labor supply inexorably depresses wages and increases the costs of social benefits. Cui bono? The corporate donors of political contributions.
The American public is demanding that Congress pass border security first, before dealing with any other issue. We want a real fence along our southern border plus 100,000 border patrol agents to assure that illegal entry stops.
The bill that was passed out of the Senate Judiciary Committee by all the Democrats plus the Republican Amnesty Four (Arlen Specter, Sam Brownback, Mike DeWine and Lindsey Graham) was basically a Kennedy-McCain bill. The full Senate wrangled for several days over variations in wording, but here is a list of what senatorial chicanery is still trying to put over on the American people:
The United States welcomes immigrants from all over the world who support our Constitution and laws, speak the English language, and want to be 100% Americans. Unfortunately, recent street demonstrations have shown that thousands of illegal aliens do not want to assimilate into our laws and culture, but have retained their loyalty to another country. That was evident in the carrying of Mexican flags and posters such as: "Uncle Sam Stole Our Land," "If you think I'm illegal because I'm a Mexican, learn the true history because I'm in my homeland," and "Who are the real illegals? You stole our border: Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado, California, Utah." Non-assimilation is also shown by the release of Nuestro Himno, a Mexican variation of the U.S. National Anthem.
Some Mexicans use the term reconquista, which is Spanish for reconquest, to describe their desire to see southwestern United States merged with Mexico and named the new country of Aztlan. Mexico teaches its youth that the United States "stole" that area from Mexico and should be "returned." That is false; the United States acquired the Southwest a century and a half ago in three ways: part by the 1845 annexation agreement with Texas, which was then an independent republic, part ceded by Mexico in the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo after the Mexican-American War, and part by the 1852 Gadsden Purchase. Harvard University professor Samuel P. Huntington says, "Demographically, socially and culturally, the reconquista of the Southwest United States by Mexico is well under way."
How many times have you been told "we are a nation of immigrants"? Of course, America is full of wonderful immigrants who are some of our best Americans and have contributed mightily to the United States growing into a mighty power.
But the people who say "we are a nation of immigrants" are often trying to claim that immigration is the principal reason for America's greatness, and that's not true. People come to America from all over the world not because we have a large diversity of ethnic populations; they come because America is a land of freedom and opportunity, and the reason why we are a land of liberty and opportunity is not because of a diversity of immigrants but because we have a unique type of government created by the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution.
Those two great American documents were not written by immigrants. Of the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence, 48 were native-born Americans and 2 of the others came to this country as babies. Of the 39 signers of the United States Constitution, 32 were native-born Americans. The few signers of both documents who were not native-born all came from Great Britain or British colonies.
It's important that we teach history to our young people as it really happened, rather than as the liberals wish it had happened.
A Booker T. Washington Symposium will be held in Chicago on June 4-6 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of his birth and to attract national attention to his timeless pro-education, pro-entrepreneurship, and pro-self-reliance messages. His speech at the Atlanta Exposition in 1895 is known as one of the most famous and influential speeches in American history, and it's a good guide today for dealing with the Katrina disaster.
Dr. Washington started by telling the story of a ship lost at sea for many days. When it sighted a friendly vessel, it sent a desperate signal from its mast: "Water, water; we die of thirst!" The friendly vessel signaled back, "Cast down your bucket where you are." The lost ship signaled again, "Water, water; send us water!" Again the friendly ship sent the message, "Cast down your bucket where you are." After a third and fourth such exchange, the captain of the distressed vessel finally heeded the injunction and cast down his bucket. It came up full of fresh, sparking water from the mouth of the Amazon River.
Dr. Washington then admonished members of his own race to cast down their buckets "in agriculture, mechanics, in commerce, in domestic service, and in the professions." He cautioned that "in the great leap from slavery to freedom we may overlook the fact that the masses of us are to live by the productions of our hands."
"We shall prosper in proportion as we learn to dignify and glorify common labor and put brains and skill into the common occupations of life," he said. "No race can prosper till it learns that there is as much dignity in tilling a field as in writing a poem. . . . It is at the bottom of life we must begin, and not at the top. Nor should we permit our grievances to overshadow our opportunities."
Booker T. Washington then gave a stern message "to those of the white race who look to the incoming of those of foreign birth and strange tongue and habits for the prosperity of the South. . . Cast down your bucket among those people who have, without strikes and labor wars, tilled your fields, cleared your forests, builded your railroads and cities, and brought forth treasures from the bowels of the earth."
Continuing, Dr. Washington said: "As we have proved our loyalty to you in the past, in nursing your children, watching by the sick-bed of your mothers and fathers, and often following them with tear-dimmed eyes to their graves, so in the future, in our humble way, we shall stand by you with a devotion that no foreigner can approach, ready to lay down our lives, if need be, in defense of yours."
Dr. Washington's speech wowed his audience and was widely reprinted in newspapers all over the country. A faraway Boston newspaper editorialized that "the sensation that it has caused in the press has never been equalled."
President Bush should stop looking for "willing workers" from other countries. Cast down our bucket in America and guide displaced and unemployed Americans to jobs now taken by those who have no right to be in our country. While the Bush-Kennedy-McCain amnesty/guest-worker plans are harmful to U.S. taxpayers and to U.S. engineers and computer specialists, these plans are scandalously hurtful to low-income white and black Americans.
Further reading: Amnesty
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