[Marxism] Re: The "Reserve Army of the Unemployed": ImmigrantWorkers, Overtime, Etc.
rrubinelli at earthlink.net
Mon Aug 1 11:01:42 MDT 2005
Let's not, leave at that, I mean, because here and now when confronted with the demogogic, racist
content of your blog you want to "differentiate" among immigrants, between those with college
educations and those without, between those who come here to "get over" or get into, and those
who come here.... why do those other come here? How about to survive? How about because
their traditional economies have been disrupted and they can't find work? How about because they
have been dispossessed from their land, from subsistence practices?
And in your differentiations, how many of the 53% of immigrants from Latin America/Caribbean
countries make up that 1/4 of immigrants with college educations, those upper-class immigrants
you pretend to focus your righteous class discontent upon? How many of those with college edu-
cation are in fact documented workers, sponsored by families and/or businesses? How many of
the petty producers you don't prefer are included in your faux real-estate numbers. Oh yeah,
real estate-- one or two articles from the WSJ are supposed to tell us something. Look at the
articles-- tell me where you find one shred of evidence that housing costs in Wisconsin have been
driven upward by a small program that has awarded mortgages below $100,000 to 100 people in
4 years? Where is the evidence that these 100 people have put housing out of reach for the
"domestic" working class? Do you have any idea as to how large the mortgage financing business
is in the US? How large the housing stock is? The historical levels of vacancies?
Yeah, real estate is it, isn't it? Remember the 60s and open housing? Then we were being told
that the domestic, i.e. white, working class had a real concern that property values would be
destroyed if open housing was enforced. And those with those real concerns could even point to
the declines in values where black had moved into previous white neighborhoods. What a legit
concern that was, and one more reason to support Jim Crow. Except for this, the decline in property
values was due to redlining, blockbusting, threats, intimidation-- all those things that make real
property such an important commodity-- fear and greed. And just so today, property values,
housing costs, have absolutely nothing to do with the number of immigrants. Those costs
are driven by fear and greed.
And guess what else you tell us: "the fact [sic!] once-unionized jobs are now paying third-world
wages than to the floods of trespassers willing to work at virtually any price."
Really? Where? The decline in manufacturing and union employment goes hand in had beginning
in 1973 with the assault on the working class that utilized the combination recession/inflation of
OPEC 1 and OPEC 2. This was well before the historically high immigration of the 1990s, a period
that witnessed a brief upsurge in manufacturing employment, a minor recovery in real wages.
The assault is deepened during the 1980s, that "lost decade" lost for everyone including the US
working class, when again immigration was attacked, despite its relative small size.
Exactly where do we find trespassers, a racist/bourgeois term if ever there was one, willing to
work for any price, dispossessing the "domestic" working class?
In the construction industry, attacks by the bourgeoisie and their governments, local, and state, and
capitulation by the trade union leadership allowed more and more work to go non-union-- but that
too was initiated before and independent of any massive immigration.
Floods? Trespassers? Those words are inaccurate, and racist, and are designed to appeal to and
create a sense of panic, of threat.
While immigration in the 1990s exceed that of the 1980s (representing 3.7% of the population for
that decade as opposed to 3.2% for the 80s), the larger number in the 90s is only 1/3 the peak level
of 11.6% for the 100-1910 decade. It bears repeating-- only 1/3 the peak level.
No, we shouldn't leave it at that, at all. As JB pointed out correctly, the only socialism Mr.
Godena's distortions support is national socialism.
Oh, I work for a living. Started as as brakeman on a railroad in 1972.
From: Louis R Godena <louisgodena at ids.net>
Sent: Aug 1, 2005 11:44 AM
To: Activists and scholars in Marxist tradition <marxism at lists.econ.utah.edu>
Subject: Re: [Marxism] Re: The "Reserve Army of the Unemployed": ImmigrantWorkers, Overtime, Etc.
So, each of us knows where the other stands. Let's leave it at that.
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