Friday, 09 October 2009

Adding to American Unemployment

Written by  Joe Wolverton, II

unemployedOne of the strongest currents in today’s economic maelstrom is unemployment. Recently released figures reveal the devastating power in that storm. As of September, there are over 15 million Americans without a job. No job means no income.

And, with no income, bills will go unpaid, homes will go into foreclosure, cars will be repossessed, visits to the doctor will be eliminated as a luxury, and families will spin faster and faster around the brink of disaster, teetering perilously while fearfully awaiting the next demoralizing gust.

Despite the dire employment news, the truth is even worse. While the Department of Labor reports a 9.8 percent employment rate, the number of Americans without a job is demonstrably much higher. The reason the Department of Labor numbers are inaccurate is that they do not account for the nearly 1 million people that abandoned the work force in September. Yes, these people have suffered disappointment and privation for so long in their search for gainful employment that they have taken part-time, subsistence level jobs or have quit looking for work altogether. If you add this number to the official unemployment report, then the adjusted rate of employment would be closer to 17 percent.  That is a startling figure.

That is to say, the figure should be startling, but it seems to be acceptable to a nation weary of daily unchecked and seemingly uncheckable economic and moral disintegration of our once mighty republic. We were the glorious realization of John Winthrop’s “shining city on a hill” but we have declined into a dingy shantytown on the verge of absolute annihilation through self-immolation on the altar of globalism.

One aspect of the centripetal eradication of national borders through supernational trade and economic unions that should be particularly foul in the nostrils of Americans is the unrepentant disregard manifested by our elected leaders toward the hemorrhaging of illegal aliens across our borders, chiefly that with Mexico. Ignoring pleas from the chorus of millions of unemployed or under-employed citizens and legal immigrants, the government of the United States adamantly refuses to stanch the flow of illegals, behaving haughtily as latter-day Neros, fiddling while Rome burns. In this case, fiddling with numbers so that the Romans don’t smell the smoke.

There are, according to estimates reported by Lehman Brothers, nearly 25 million Americans without work or working at jobs that do not pay enough to support their families. That is support in the most basic sense: food, shelter, and medical care. In spite of this harrowing image, there are approximately 8 million jobs being held by illegal aliens, whether those who crossed criminally into the country or having once been here legally, have overstayed the tenure of their visas. Rightfully, Patrick Buchanan has mused, “Why is this not a matter of national outrage?”

Buchanan, in his article for humanevents.com, refutes the age-old straw man erected by those who benefit from hiring those who have come here illegally, that being that illegal immigrants only take jobs that Americans don’t want. With there being six applicants for every one job opening in America, there are seemingly no jobs that Americans won’t do, as a matter of fact, they are apparently willing to queue up just for a 16 percent chance of actually finding a job. As additional proof that it’s a ruse that lazy Americans lose jobs to motivated illegals, Buchanan cites the case of the Swift and Company meatpacking plants. In 2006, six of these plants were raided and 1,200 illegal aliens were taken into custody. Miraculously, within a few months Swift and Company were up and running with a full staff. These jobs, jobs supposedly so rejected and despised by lazy Americans, were all filled, every one of them, by native-born Americans desperate for work and willing to do anything to keep their families from slipping into the chasm.

It is well known that illegal immigrants flock to jobs in the construction business. So much so, in fact, that it is common practice to have bilingual foreman at most job sites to make sure the workers understand the job to be done. Drive by any building being erected or renovated, and it is more than likely that you will see workers of Hispanic origin outnumbering blacks and whites. This is deceiving, however, for according to the Center for Immigration Studies, native-born Americans, of any skin color, outnumber illegal aliens three to one in construction. Consider that. With those numbers in mind, one is forced to draw the conclusion that not only will Americans, for all there reported laziness, do these jobs, they in fact are doing them right now!

The picture painted by these statistics should be revolting to all Americans and should stir them to action against those permitting such systematic perpetuation of criminal behavior. What must not be ignored, however, is that when it comes to squeezing Americans out of jobs to make room for cheaper, more vulnerable illegal workers, it takes two to tango. The illegal immigrant is inarguably culpable for behavior amounting to breaking and entering. Let us not ignore, however, the other factor in the equation: the employer. We must hold those hiring illegals as accountable as those that are hired illegally. Our adherence to principles of laissez faire capitalism must not restrain us from making examples of those whose quest for profit persuades them to break the law and rob Americans of opportunities that law and justice have declared should be theirs. Borders, impenetrable borders, must be erected not only around our country, but we must erect borders around the workforce by tethering the as yet unchecked ability of employers to hire whomever they will, regardless of the law.

A united and consistent effort on the part of concerned citizens, both employed and unemployed (and the truth is that these days the former so quickly and unexpectedly becomes the latter), must demand that our lawmakers immediately and vigorously repel the decades long invasion of our country by illegal aliens, and that they enact laws that require the infliction of substantial and severe punishments against any employer that hires any worker other than one with verifiable permission to accept that employment.

The price of inaction is incalculable. The Congress and the President will not move unless the spurs are forcefully applied by a purposeful, powerful, and persistent bloc of citizens. In this time when everything costs more and the money we have is worth less, no one should receive a free pass.

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