They're taking our jobs... really?!

Discussion in 'Politics' started by B_VinylBoy, Jun 24, 2011.

  1. B_VinylBoy

    B_VinylBoy New Member

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    One of the biggest arguments surrounding immigration reform is that illegal immigrants are coming to this country and are taking jobs away from legal citizens.

    Enter Georgia, where Governor Nathan Deal recently signed into law House Bill 87, a law designed to drive illegal immigrants out of their state. Now officials are surprised to see that that HB 87 is driving a lot of illegal immigrants out of Georgia (as they wanted), but at the expense of the state's farming and agriculture industry. According to survey of 230 Georgia farmers conducted by Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black, farmers expect to need more than 11,000 workers at some point over the rest of the season, a number that probably underestimates the real need, since not every farmer in the state responded to the survey.

    Now why aren't these jobs being filled in by those legalized Americans? Perhaps it has something to do with the pay... More than 6,300 of the newly unclaimed jobs pay an hourly wage of $7.25 to $8.99, or an average of roughly $8 an hour. Over a 40-hour work week in the South Georgia sun, that’s $320 a week, before taxes, although most workers probably put in considerably longer hours. Another 3,200 jobs pay $9 to $11 an hour. And while our agriculture commissioner has been quoted as saying Georgia farms provide “$12, $13, $14, $16, $18-an-hour jobs,” the survey reported just 169 openings out of more than 11,000 that pay $16 or more. On top of that, only a few of the jobs include benefits — only 7.7 percent offer health insurance, and barely a third are even covered by workers compensation.

    Ga.’s farm-labor crisis going exactly as planned | Jay Bookman

    It doesn't help matters to also know that the maximum unemployment payment in Georgia is $330 a week before taxes. Which also could explain why some of our more dedicated workers may forego this supposed "employment opportunity" and try to seek out better options. And who could blame them?

    A lot of words come to mind when I read this, but the first one is a simple, short four letter exclamation... oops! :rolleyes: :biggrin1:
     
    #1 B_VinylBoy, Jun 24, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2011
  2. dandelion

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    It is a paradox that some of the jobs people least like to do pay the least money while some of the favourite jobs (being the boss!) pay most. This seems to have much more to do with bosses getting to choose how much they get than what their true value is to a company.
     
  3. B_crackoff

    B_crackoff New Member

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    Whilst I agree with the main points, you have to recognize that in a period of high unemployment, low skilled immigration is entirely undesirable.

    What is never mentioned about immigrant labour is that a) immigration necessarily creates its own employment - to cope with the extra services & infrastructure to service an increased population, & b) The "opportunity cost", or even shadow price, of an immigrant taking a job that a citizen should take, & all the associated benefits that citizen receives instead.

    Therefore, the cost of immigrant labour (in a time of high unemployment) is practically double, half of which is paid by the taxpayer.

    Unfortunately, the social welfare scheme's principals have become slightly bastardized overtime, & what was a safety net for when there was no work has become a benefits trap.

    Those on the right would respond that benefits should be cut, those on the left that wages should be higher.

    It would be a better & cheaper solution to immigrant labour for the government to allow some form of non taxable benefit to remain payable, especially in seasonal work in order to incentivise its citizens to take advantage of opportunities, whilst at the same time restricting benefits for those who do not. Maybe some of the enormous subsidies certain industrial & agricultural groups recieve should be diverted solely to the labour force at their critical points of production.

    That seems fair to me.
     
    #3 B_crackoff, Jun 24, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2011
  4. B_Lightkeeper

    B_Lightkeeper New Member

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    There are many here that don't want to work as long as they can receive unemployment and/or welfare. Sad...but true.
     
  5. B_VinylBoy

    B_VinylBoy New Member

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    That may be true to a small degree, but knowing that UI is a limited resource most people wouldn't see living off of Unemployment & Welfare for any long period of time as a feasible option. The only real way to fill these vacant positions is to make sure salary and benefits are not only worth the labor, but are on par with the average cost of living in America today. When more than half of the positions available barely pay out what one can get in Unemployment before taxes, it doesn't surprise me in the least that nobody is running to fill them. When I lost my first web design job during the dot-com crisis, I was making $60K a year. Even though my UI was limited and I eventually took a job that paid me less than half of my other job in order to be employed again with benefits, at no point did I ever think I was going to take a position that would pay me equal to or less what I was getting each week in UI.

    The other way they could have taken care of this would be to make any of the illegal immigrants who were working these fields into legal citizens. That way the positions would still be filled and the state could properly generate revenue from them through the way of taxes. Although that would have meant employers would have needed to raise their wages and benefits in the process, they wouldn't be faced with the farming crisis they have now.
     
    #5 B_VinylBoy, Jun 24, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2011
  6. AG08

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    It's the same argument against immigrants in Canada as well. In reality, these immigrants do the jobs that Canadians wouldn't do for triple for the money!
     
  7. fun21

    fun21 New Member

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    Exactly AG08!
     
  8. rawbone8

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    The distinction between immigrants and illegal immigrants needs to be made. Some of the posts above seem to be all over the map with regard to that.

    A lot of people use the illegals issue as the club with which to bash — when it's really an excuse to voice their dislike of foreign people with different languages, customs and cultures.

    I'm all for following reasonable rules. That's my preference. However, the actual working economy depends on rule breaking to "subsidize" the farmers and other employers with low wage workers. In my opinion, politicians aren't really keen on fixing that, but they need to be seen as "doing something" to get votes.

    People would rise in the streets if the food system had to pay all of its workers from the farm to the supermarket living wages — I think then the "real" cost of food would be causing riots.
     
    #8 rawbone8, Jun 24, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2011
  9. houtx48

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    I was under the impression that one had to work before they could get unemployment.
     
  10. AG08

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    Very true rawbone8. There are many farms near where I live. In the spring, summer, and fall I see migrant labourers from Mexico and Central America toiling in the heat and fields to earn money that Canadians would find unacceptable for such brutally hard work. To these migrant labourers though, it is good money. Since they are only here to work on the farms in the planting/growing/harvesting seasons, they return to their countries when the winter comes (as there is no work available) and support their families with the money they made here. They absolutely deserve every penny of it. I fully admit that there is no way on Earth I would do that kind of work, especially for minimum wage. In addition, these migrant labourers live in horrendous living conditions on the farm while they are here (W5 once did an expose on this on CTV). Lousy wages + brutally hard work + deplorable living conditions = necessary migrant labourers. Good luck finding a Canadian willing to put up with that. I hear stories of high school kids today refusing to work for less than $15/hour (minimum wage in Ontario is about $10.25/hr), and flat out refusing to do any work where they will get their hands dirty. We have become a very spoiled society with a sense of entitlement. The reality is though, someone has to do these jobs, or we all suffer.
     
    #10 AG08, Jun 24, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2011
  11. AG08

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    Same in Canada, and the same in Australia when I lived and worked there in 1995. Australia's minimum wage was double that of Canada's at the time. I couldn't believe that I was making double there than I did in Canada (I was a university student at the time). The place where I lived while I was working there had an Australian teenage high school dropout living in the same Queenslander house that I was in (it was divided into 4 flats). I remember this kid telling me that I was crazy to work for minimum wage. He earned more money on the welfare system, had his rent paid for by the government, and even received free dental, perscription and eyeglasses. If he left the system to work for what I was earning, he would have earned less and lost all of those additional benefits. It was no wonder that Aussie employers loved foreign workers. I remember I found a job my first day looking, and started work the next day. It's also no wonder that foreign workers (such as myself) were taxed at a rate of 29% from $1. After all, someone had to pay for those welfare bums. I don't know if things have changed down under since then, but I remember being shocked at how generous their system was - and I thought Canada was bad for being overly generous. I have heard from relatives in the U.K. that the unemployed get it even better than the unemployed in OZ do. It's little wonder the U.K. economy is in crisis today.
     
  12. vince

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    Well VB, clearly the solution is for all those layabouts on UI to have their entitlements cut off and for them get their butts on down to Georgia to pick some cotton! They just spend that tax money on crack-cocaine and crystal meth anyways.


    No wait... Crystal is the people's drug. The raw materials necessary to cook meth run about $200 for an ounce. Hell, even people on public assistance can afford that. And after you cut that ounce with some MSM or rock salt you’ve now got maybe $1600 worth of street drug. Holy shit, you don’t need to be no Milton Friedman to know that’s an ass load of profit. Take that Mr. Welfare-Hating Elitist Republican, The People are taking their handouts and contributing to economic growth. Let's see you generate a 700% return.


    Fuck it. Go pick your own damn lettuce.
     
    #12 vince, Jun 24, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2011
  13. dandelion

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    You dont think that perhaps this was an ideal setup for Australians? Collectively they get to sit about while you do the work. What precisely was wrong with that? Whoever you were working for presumably was happy because you did a cheap job and the aussie guy was happy because he did not need to do it. This is fine just so long as people accept that the unemployed Aussie needs to get his share. Ifyou try to cheat him by not giving him welfare then the system will not work. It is possible for australia to benefit from others coming and doing the work so australians do not have to, but only if all australians get to have a living. By allowing cheap workers into the country it distorts the labour market and pushes down prices unfairly for home workers.

    Exactly the same in the UK. I remember reading an item in the local paper where someone running a care home was complaining that if he had to pay the minimum wage he could not possibly run the home. Without immigrant workers willing to take his wages he would be out of business. Wrong answer. Without immigrant workers he would have to pay enough for a brit to be willing to do the job. Then he would have to charge people the real cost for living in his care home. True, this is probably very expensive, but it is the real cost. If an old person is to get the services of a young one working for them, then he has to be paid for at a fair rate. Gran will have to sell her very expensive house to pay the fees, to pay the wages of the cleaner who still does not have a hope in hell of buying a house like grans because even with his higher but still basement level wage he could never afford it.
     
  14. B_VinylBoy

    B_VinylBoy New Member

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    Nice one, vince... hee hee hee!! :biggrin1:
     
  15. AG08

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    Of course it's an ideal setup. I think you've lost sight of the focus of this thread which is that countries rely on foreign workers to do the jobs they won't do, but then moan and bitch that "all of the foreigners are taking our jobs" even though they are benefiting from it, and won't do the jobs themselves. As I said before, if local workers won't do the jobs, then it is up to immigrant/migrant/foreign workers to do the jobs or society suffers from it. In the global economy in which we live today, people have to understand that there is always someone who is willing to do the job they won't do. It is the same in Canada (as I also mentioned before). Also, you can't really expect me or anyone else to have sympathy for an uneducated/unskilled worker who refuses to work for minimum wage. I did it for many many years until I earned my degree from university and was able to get a better paying job. If everyone in the U.K. has the same attitude as you do, it's little wonder that the economy there is in the shitter.

    Canada's economy is the envy of the world. We are even out performing the U.S. with a strong banking system (strongest and safest in the world) lower unemployment, a stronger dollar, and lower deficit. We have out performed all of the G8 countries, and were the first of the G8 countries to emerge from the recession and add more jobs than were lost during the worldwide recession. Also, despite the offer from the federal gov't, not one Canadian bank took financial assistance from the federal gov't because they didn't need it. This didn't happen by accident - it came from prudent measures the Canadian government took years ago, and continues to take today. Countries around the world (including the U.K.) are praising Canada's example and are asking for advice from Canada to clean up their debt ridden economies, decrease unemployment and resurrect their failing banks and banking systems. Overly generous benefits only cripple a nation's economy as many countries around the world have found out. At the end of the day, the bill has to be paid. There is no free lunch!
     
    #15 AG08, Jun 25, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2011
  16. Horrible

    Horrible New Member

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    "There is no free lunch."

    Damn skippy.
     
  17. AG08

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    Unfortunately, Greece is now learning that the hard way.
     
  18. B_VinylBoy

    B_VinylBoy New Member

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    Give this man a cigar. :wink:
     
  19. dandelion

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    I always find this rather amusing. The one thing there absolutely is for homo sapiens, is a free lunch. We ride along on a wave of free energy and raw materials. All we have to do is dig it up. The only question is how we distribute what we get free.

    The argument I have seen is that there is no net benefit to the UK economy of cheap labour coming here. The reality is that cheap labour comes with extra infrastructure costs and takes its money away with it eventually. Meanwhile the unemployed labour here still has to be fed and housed.

    It is not a question even of whether it is moral to ensure that everyone in society has a certain minimum standard, but rather that all those enjoying a high standard benefit because the poor feel included in society and play along by the same rules as the rich. When they do not, we get what is called crime. People who do not see the rules of society benefiting them, naturally break them. We are clever apes and understand what benefits us.

    No, individual employers reckon the easiest and most profitable way for them personally to run their companies is to use cheap foreign labour imported into the country. No one goes round checking whether this is also good for society. There are plenty of examples where it is not.

    For example, the british chocolate indutry cadbury's just got bought up by Kraft. They instantly abandoned their pledges to keep production in this country and have transferred it elsewhere (where labour is cheaper). Cadbury's was perfectly profitable using expensive UK labour because it has a captive market and understands it. Because it was willing to use technology so that it had fewer employees and maintained overall productivity. But the easy option is to run to the cheap labour alternative. This is absolutely BAD for the UK. And funnily enough their chocolate has been rising steeply in price lately. They know they have a captive market who want their product. The example is all the more galling because cadburys was originally a quaker company, whose founders believed in the principle of paying their workers generously and the company had always been run on those lines.

    THIS is what is bad for the UK economy. A company which was socially minded, even now, and has been bought out. Kraft will not continue this same principle of running the company mindful of the needs of society and the entire world will be poorer overall because of it.

    Damn right. I do not believe in operating a 'race to the bottom'. The aim should be to push up living standards. The point is that we do not benefit from it. The person who accepts very low wages is not beneftting, the person who refuses low wages and is on state aid is not benefiting and society overall is not benefiting. If Canada is running well it is not because they have a policy of exploiting cheap labour. Perhaps because they have a policy of preventing over-exploitative banking. Which turns out to be the right policy.

    There is someone willing to do the job because where they come from general living standards are so bad that it is better for them. We are not aiming to reduce our own living standards to that level. Or I assume we are not? Most people who have power to change society do not have any personal incentive to look out for the benefit of the bulk of society, and it inevitably conflicts with their own collection of wealth. Thats a fact. Either they have to believe it is morally right to spread wealth around or they have to be forced to do it anyway. That is what democracy is for.


    What you are saying is that a lot of jobs are underpaid. Obviosuly so, if they are jobs which no one wants to do. How come the jobs people like get paid more than thoes people do not like. Thats very odd.

    The UK by no means has the most socialist attitude to wealth of various nations. But some of us are horrified to look at the example of the wealth gaps and lack of care for society in certain other places. US health care is a scandal.
     
  20. B_crackoff

    B_crackoff New Member

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    Yeah, I think you got stiffed there, or you were a little ignorant.

    If you were working legally, you could have claimed all your tax & any superannuation back!:cool:. It's pretty standard in all Western countries that you are not a resident for tax purposes if you live or work in a country for a year or less. (You are meant to declare it in your home country - but who does that - you were backpacking!:smile:)

    Therefore, you voluntarily subsidized them.

    Temporary migrant workers, & anyone earning minimum wage in the UK ultimately doesn't pay any taxation whatsoever, other than National Insurance (social & health contributions) of 11%, & that on only half of their earnings.

    Furthermore, if they were paying £150/wk rent(house or flat on their own), half of that would be paid in Housing benefit.

    https://www.turn2us.entitledto.co.u...d=13&cid=2714f8b8-9b0d-44b0-bb66-dc3ffcf5a2fa

    Therefore, they'd wind up with about £130 net/wk, but have to pay council tax of £20/wk, leaving £110/wk. This compares to £67.50/wk net for a single person not working at all.

    It therefore costs the state £75/wk to employ someone born in the UK to work at minimum wage each week, but the costs for an immigrant to do that work when UK citizens won't are that £75, plus the rent, benefit, council tax, of an unemployed UK citizen (150+67.50+20=237.50) = £312.50.

    Obviously, rent rates vary, but conservatively, it's easy to see that cheap immigrant labour at a time of high unemployment costs the UK £150 - £250/week!:eek: And when you add in the extra costs of infrastructure to support migrants...

    There is therefore a clear argument for retaining some kind of benefit to incentivise those returning to work - say another £20/wk, especially when after travel costs & subsistence are taken into account, £20/wk more is about all that they'd be getting now.

    The benefit entitlement for people with kids is actually higher than that for another adult - an unemployed partner would attract about £35, yet each extra child £80/wk for the first, & £63 for each subsequent one! Those are the benefits that should be targeted as they just encourage a lifelong reliance on the state.

    I also don't think that people are really looking at Canada's banking system as a model of excellence anymore than they are at Norway's. Both have huge natural resources with a comparatively small population. It was pretty obvious what was happening in the other banking systems at the time - it was just expediency on behalf of politicians & the public that turned a blind eye to it.
     
    #20 B_crackoff, Jun 29, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2011
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