Shilling for Big Chicken Plant

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James Surowiecki makes the humanitarian case for a guest worker plan:

In fact, whatever benefits the guest-worker program brought to the U.S. economy or to particular businesses, the biggest winners would be the workers themselves. The Harvard economist Dani Rodrik has calculated that the economic value to poor workers of a comprehensive temporary-work program dwarfs the value created by lowering trade barriers or eliminating capital regulations. When a good made by a foreign worker enters this country, the worker gets only a tiny slice of what we pay. But when the worker himself comes into this country his earnings can rise by a factor of ten or more. There are few, if any, foreign-aid programs that do as much for people in developing countries as simply allowing them to work in the U.S. legally. Congress, of course, is under no obligation to care about foreign workers. But the program's costs to American workers are negligible, the gains for the guest workers are enormous, and the U.S. economy will benefit.

The plan has the benefit of being a politically palatable way to jack up levels of legal immigration. There is no reason for labor participation and citizenship to be so closely aligned, especially given how many immigrants don't even aspire to the latter.

NEXT: Wyoming Republican Sen. Craig Thomas Dies

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  1. I should probably think of something to say, because of who I am and all.

  2. Since this thread relates to immigration, I’d just like to say that I agree with whatever MikeP will say when he shows up.

  3. highnumber,

    The corporate welfare class stole my wallet! What kind of scam are you trying to pull here?!?

  4. Whatever happened to LoneWacko?

  5. I know I shouldn’t miss El Wacko, but hes really reasoned and restrained when compared to William R. AR, and whoever that asshole was (I can’t remember how to spell his name) who recommended we all read camp of the saints

  6. Since this thread relates to immigration, I’d just like to say that I agree with whatever MikeP will say when he shows up.

    Actually, it doesn’t. Other than political labels have confused “guest worker” with “immigrant.”

    There is no reason for labor participation and citizenship to be so closely aligned, especially given how many immigrants don’t even aspire to the latter.

    Most Mexicans around here want to come work, make some money, then go home. That is not “immigration.”

  7. joe,
    I’m a pimp, not a thief!
    And my bitches ain’t no thieves neither!

    Now if you can’t pay for that Big Mac you eating then I guess you have to work it off, baby.
    Let me think of something you can do.

    You look good in a uniform?

    Ooo, baby! You do look fine in a uniform!
    Put on this hairnet, too.
    Now get to work, bitch!

  8. Cesar,

    You know what got to me about William R?
    He’s a liar. He said, “Sure, as long as the employer covers all the costs associated with the foreign worker, then, fine, the employer can hire whomever they choose.” (I’m making him a little more coherent for the reader’s sake.) I called him out on that and said “Great, we’re on the same page then. If immigrants are a net gain to the economy, you’re in favor of opening the borders.” Suddenly he gets all nativist (Don’t use that word with him. Although he went into a rant that defined nativism, he views the word as an insult.) on me and it turns out he would never accept open borders under any circumstances.
    My point of view is that, first and foremost, open borders are a part of every American’s freedom to hire any damn worker he or she chooses to, as long as that worker does not directly threaten me or my property. (Keep the Typhoid Mary or Charles Manson types out.) The fact that open borders make economic sense is just the icing on the cake of liberty. You won’t catch me telling William R that if he can show me it doesn’t make economic sense I’ll flip to his side.
    He’s just a liar who will use any excuse to keep (some? all? certain?) foreigners out.

  9. “…But the program’s costs to American workers are negligible, the gains for the guest workers are enormous, and the U.S. economy will benefit.”

    Nicaraguan worker increase their salaries by a factor of ten, going from $8 per day to $80 per day. American workers decrease their salaries by half, going from $160 per day to $80 per day.

    Hmmmm. “Negligible” doesn’t seem to properly describe the situation here, at least not for those American workers in competition with people who normally earn $1000 to $3000 per year.

  10. Perhaps we can get some guest workers to do the job that Americans won’t do – guard the border against invasion.

    Better idea would be to bring the II Infantry Division back from Korea and have them patrol the border. Let the South Koreans guard their own border.

  11. highnumber wrote:
    Cesar,
    You know what got to me about William R?
    He’s a liar.

    Heh. ‘Cesar’ is a mendacious character, but I guess he tells the lies you love to hear.

    James Surowiecki makes the humanitarian case for a guest worker plan:
    “What a sorry comment on the state of our intellectual culture. What low, shoddy stuff. Something poisonous and malodorous seems to come over people when they get infatuated with mass low-skilled immigration. Clever, bright, witty, and personable people turn to snarling and scratching. And always, always the insinuation that you are a bad person and I am your moral superior.” – Derbyshire
    http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=Zjg1MDkwYzdiZjgzZmEwMDQ4OWVlNGE1YTE5N2M5Y2E=

    Let the South Koreans guard their own border.
    Border? The S. Koreans must be awful people, no doubt ‘racist’ against those poor N. Koreans, if they have a national border!

  12. American workers decrease their salaries by half, going from $160 per day to $80 per day.

    American workers in grunt jobs (picking crops, cutting Christmas trees, landscaping, domestic service, washing dishes, nanny) currently earn $20 per hour? Where?

  13. “American workers in grunt jobs (picking crops, cutting Christmas trees, landscaping, domestic service, washing dishes, nanny) currently earn $20 per hour? Where?”

    Good point. decrease all wages by half.

  14. Good show, flemur! Thanks for pointing out Cesar’s lies, just like I specified what makes William R a liar. You sure put me in my place!
    Damn.

    Wheeeee!!
    Wheeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!
    Wheeee!!

  15. Oh Le Mur, please give us one of your brilliant lectures on race and IQ now!/snark

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