Congress, Big Business and Illegal Aliens
Recent CBS-New York Times Poll indicated the President’s approval rating at 31%. The same poll indicated the Congress’ approval rating was at 29%.
People are fed up with this country’s leadership. Though there are a number of issues of concern to all of us, my last post, ANSWER Manipulates Illegal Aliens, seemed to strike a responsive chord.
We’re hearing a lot these days about ‘Immigration Reform’ and ‘Border Security.’ My feeling is that most Americans would like to see our borders secured. And yet the Bush administration and a good percentage of Congress appear reluctant to enforce immigration laws that are already on the books.
We might wonder why, but you only have to do a little research and ‘follow the money’ to understand why we’re getting little action from Washington.
Agribusiness employs a large percentage of illegal aliens. Some of this work is backbreaking (vegetable and fruit harvesting). Some of it is dangerous (meat processing). In 2004 Agribusiness contributed $53 million to political campaigns. 71% went to Republicans and 29% went to Democrats. These industries are making substantial profits from these undocumented workers. In 1990 a worker in the meat processing industry made $19/hour. Today that same worker makes $9/hour.
Construction industries also employ a high percentage of these people. That industry contributed $72 million to politicians in 2004, 72% to Republicans and 29% to Democrats. Just this week 80 people working for building subcontractors in Kentucky were arrested by federal immigration authorities. 76 were illegal aliens. 4 were their American supervisors who hired them.
If we arrested more company supervisors and corporate managers, maybe we would eliminate a good part of the problem.
But how can we do that when one of the largest business lobbies, The U. S. Chamber of Commerce, is forming a coalition which includes not only major U.S. corporations but also Canadian and Mexican business interests? That organization spent more than $53 million on federal lobbying in 2004.
Big business wants illegal alien workers. By paying them less and providing minimal
benefits they make more money. To insure their profits, they have bought off many in Congress and most in the U.S. Senate.
In his recent HBO Special, maybe George Carlin said it best. “You know what they (the owners of this country) want? Obedient workers, people who are just smart enough to run the machines and do the paperwork and just dumb enough to passably accept all the increasingly sh---y jobs with lower pay, longer hours, reduced benefits, the end of overtime, and the vanishing pension that disappears the minute you get to collect it.”
Somehow we’re going to have to figure out a way to challenge these jerks who are willing to sell out our country and the people they represent.
(The above statistical information was accessed from The Center for Responsive Politics. Their web page is www.opensecrets.org .)
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