December 15, 2006

Fine, so I'll order from the "dollar fifty" menu

This AP article has me seeing red. Here's the opening:

When hordes of police and immigration officials stormed meatpacking plants in six states this week, the illegal workers arrested may not have been the only victims.

Victims? Illegal workers arrested for breaking US law are not victims because they got caught!

Who are the other victims? Why, you and me of course, because we may have to pay more for meat because all of those other victims (you know, the ILLEGAL aliens) got busted by big, bad Uncle Sam.

The meatpacking industry has become dependent on an unauthorized labor force, and it is not good government to destroy an entire industry.

Lets parse that out. "The meatpacking industry has become dependent on an unauthorized labor force...". Sounds to me like the meatpacking industry needs some civic lessons on being a good corporate citizen.

"...it is not good government to destroy an entire industry." I agree with this completely. Just ask tobacco what they think. However, when you put those two statements together like some kind of hybrid rationale, the entire argument is bullshit.

According to the article, union membership is down and wages are way down since the meatpacking industry moved out of the northeast and into the plains states. The reason behind the move is clear and undisputed. There is a larger, cheaper labor pool (translation: illegal aliens) in the midwest.

Personally, if my meat prices go up because criminals are no longer involved in the supply chain, well, that's ok with me. That includes those criminals who knowingly hire illegal aliens to cut costs and boost profits. If you need a touchy-feely aspect, think about the meatpackers who lost their jobs when the plants relocated. This is outsourcing an industry without even leaving our own porous borders.

And don't ever, Ever, EVER try to tell me that those busted illegal aliens are victims.

Posted by: Ted at 12:14 PM | category: Links
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1 Given that they were mostly arrested for using stolen social security numbers, i'd say labeling the criminals as the victims is beyond appalling.

Posted by: Stephen Macklin at December 15, 2006 02:21 PM (UquFN)

2 Amen. What bothers me most is that so many people think that these criminals ARE victims.

Time to start digging the fallout shelter and start buying jerky by the container load.

Posted by: Paul at December 15, 2006 07:34 PM (ahClC)

3 One of these raided plants was less than an hour away from me in the town where I went to college.

What disgusts me is the rhetoric being spouted by the UFCW local union rep. I mean, unions these days are mainly in place to keep people from getting fired for not doing their jobs, but how can you defend criminals like this? Sure, Senor Juan Illegal may not think of himself as a criminal because he's working, earning a paycheck and taking care of his family, but somewhere along the way he broke multiple laws to get to where he is. And the sad thing is...if he came into the country legally, he could still be working there, in the same conditions, and at the end of the day go home to his family without fear of government reprisal. Because who's going to work in the meat packing plant if he doesn't?

Hey, I didn't get a "harumph" out of that guy!

Ian

Posted by: Ian at December 16, 2006 03:48 AM (DGmNs)

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