April 29, 2017

Trump's Ag Sec Promotes Illegal Invasions

Timothy Birdnow

According to Breitbart Trump's Secretary of Agriculture wants to protect illegal invaders' jobs on American farms.

From the article:

"Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue told an audience on Friday that he’s pressing Trump to allow farmers and food processors to keep employing cheap illegal-alien manual labor. Trump "understands that there are … undocumented immigrant laborers, out here on the farms, many of them that are doing a great job, contributing to the economy of the United States,” Perdue said April 28, according to a report in Harvest Public Media.

Sending the illegal-immigrant workers home "is not his focus nor will that be my focus,” Perdue added.

Breitbart has asked the department’s press office for clarification of Perdue’s comments.

Perdue has also used his authority as the new agriculture secretary to bring in a labor lawyer from the industry’s trade association, the American Farm Bureau Federation, according to Harvest Public Media. Perdue continued: "

End excerpt.

And this at a time when American farms are developing new high tech ways to circumvent the use of stoop labor by migrant workers.

I predicted this.

Back in 2006 I penned an article for American Thinker in which I compared the cheap migrant labor of illegals with the Antebellum economic doldrums of the plantation economy of the South. The slave economy, I argued, led to stagnation and poverty as the cheap labor costs eliminated jobs for non-slave laborers and stifled innovation. I predicted that the cheap Latino labor would (and was) have the same effect on America. I stated:

"You see, Illegal immigration has a retarding effect on the development of greater efficiency in the industries where illegals dominate. One of the arguments for tolerating illegal immigration is that we will pay more for food.

This may be true in the short term, but I would like to point out that the availability of cheap labor provides a disincentive to mechanization which, ultimately, could drive cost down even further. Would wheat farmers in Kansas, or corn farmers in Iowa have such enormous, highly productive farms if America had always had dirt—cheap labor? There would never have been an incentive to develop modern farm equipment, and the farm production would be a fraction of what it is today. America would not feed the world if the amber waves of grain had to be hand—cultivated. Economic need drove the development of the technology needed to cultivate huge tracts of land. Cheap labor would have kept America's farmers doing things the old fashioned way because it would have been cheaper in the short term.

One need only look at history to see that this is true; the antebellum South had plenty of cheap labor to work plantations (both slave and poor white Southerners), and this plantation economy sapped all of the vitality right out of Old Dixie. The free states were the ones to prosper; it was there that industry developed, farms flourished, businesses thrived. Mines, railroads, shops and stores sprang like weeds from the fertile soil of the American spirit because free men work harder for themselves than for others, and necessity dictated that those men find new, better ways to do things."

End excerpt.

This was true of the Roman Empire, which failed to develop past a slave/muscle powered economy despite the invention of the steam engine and some other wonderful technology. The government suppressed these developments because they could not afford to de-employ the slaves. In short, the Industrial Revolution was delayed almost two millennia because of a political decision that stemmed from the unfortunate practice of employing cheap labor.

Again from the Breitbart article:

"There a lot of other farmers going into robots … and a lot of them are smaller dairy farmers who want to maintain quality of life” Foster told Breitbart News. "I would say the labor [shortage] is the big thing, and for some people, it is quality of life — the young people of today just don’t want to work the same kind of hours as we grow up working,” she added. "

End excerpt.

So robotics is revolutionizing the American farm. This is not a new development, as tractors, tilling machines, irrigation, pumps, and a host of other labor-saving devices have made America into the world's bread basket. Just a tiny fraction of the populace is now engaged in farming and yet we produce far more than we ever did. Why? It's not that we have better stoop labor.

To promote illegal immigrant labor is akin to promoting a return to the steam engine railroad as a primary means of transportation. Yes it worked in its day, but its day has passed.

That is the difference between America and under or undeveloped countries; we innovate, they preserve. It really is that simple, And necessity is the mother of invention. By flooding the country with cheap labor we make food cheaper, but at the ultimate cost of innovation and experimentation.

That won't happen without the impetus of competition, which won't happen as long as businesses can hire lawbreakers. And as long as that labor is needed it will have to remain underpaid, or it has no value. The end result is either we keep a shadow economy or we bring the illegals out of the shadows and grant them the protections given by American law - such as minimum wage, OSHA, and all the other things that drive up labor costs. In the end the labor has no greater value than native born, so we have to bring in a whole new crop of illegals. This is a machine, and one the Democrats want because it gives them eternal power, but it shafts everyone else.

In the end it is a terrible idea to artificially depress wages. I can't imagine why Trump would appoint someone who promotes this.

Posted by: Timothy Birdnow at 10:38 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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