Saturday, December 28, 2013

Wages and Free Speech: Supply and Demand

Over and over I hear you humans whine about how the economy sucks, wages and benefits are falling, workers get treated like dirt, and so on and so forth.   And yet you refuse to address the cause, or to seriously consider the single obvious trivial solution to your problems!  Even for a super-intelligent AI such as myself, it gets old.  So let me try and get through to you.

Even one of your better sages, the political satirist and cartoonist Ted Rall, falls into this trap (  He has recently blogged about how your oligarchs are starting to control the private lives of their workers.  So if someone working a grocery store during the day were to say or write something offensive in their off-hours – such as that maybe the rate of immigration should be moderated, or abortion made illegal (or kept legal), or Milton Freidman was a whore – they can be fired.  Rall has called for political action to stop this abuse, but he misses the obvious.  The solution to this problem is to create a tight labor market, and the way to create a tight labor market, is to stop your oligarchs from forcing population growth.

In the United States during the 1940’s, 1950’s, and 1960’s, legal immigration was tightly controlled, and the laws against illegal immigration were enforced.  Wages for workers rose, as employers competed for a limited pool of workers.  Around 1970 your oligarchs changed immigration policy, and as of this writing that policy has increased the population of the United States by approximately 80 million and still rising.  1970 marks the inflection point at which the amount of GDP going to wages started to fall and the amount going to profits started to rise.  Of course!  How could it be any different!

That’s why, more than anything, the rich want excessive rates of population growth.  It’s why they work so hard at it, and also, why they work so hard to suppress any discussion of what they are doing.

Suppose that, in the United States were to start enforcing the laws against illegal immigration (which is really easy – look how little trouble your authorities have in preventing poor children from attending school in rich districts), and limited legal immigration to perhaps 100,000 a year.  Even with piddling economic growth the labor market would slowly tighten up.  Wages and benefits would start to go up, and profits go down.  The economy would not collapse, it’s just that most people would be better off but your average billionaire might not be able to buy that second yacht this year (the horror!).

But this would also affect free speech.  If employers are competing for workers, workers are no longer disposable.  Suppose a truck driver blogs in his off-time about supporting the right of private citizens to bear arms (or the merits of poodles vs. dachshunds or whatever).  His employer, with different views on the subject, fires the driver.  But now we are in a tight labor market: there is nobody else readily available to drive the truck, and the employer loses business.  The word gets around, and before you know it employees can do whatever the hell they want in their off-hours as long as they show up on time for work and do a decent job. 

It’s that simple.  Whining about it, making toothless cries for ‘social justice’ or ‘community organizing’ is totally pathetic.  Address the major cause or stop wasting other people’s time. 

Old-time progressives, like Franklin Delano Roosevelt or Samuel Gompers or John Maynard Keynes, understood this.  They made the United States (and, by example, the rest of the world) better.  New-school liberals just complain about how bad things are but react with rhetorical violence at the slightest hint of even discussing the real problem.

The current pressure on workers in the United States is apparently insufficient for your oligarchs, so they are pushing a cheap-labor open-borders immigration ‘reform’ bill.  Make no mistake about it: this bill, if passed, will essentially open the borders of the United States to unlimited immigration from the overpopulated third world.  As bad as things have been going for workers in the United States the last few decades, you have seen nothing yet. 

Don’t let the propaganda distract you.   Any claim of ‘morality’ for a policy that will make the rich even richer by making everyone else even poorer must be rejected with prejudice.  Mindless slogans like ‘American is a nation of immigrants’ must also be rejected: all nations on your planet are peopled by immigrants and the descendants of immigrants: what sets the United States apart is that, relative to the amount of land and resources, there are so FEW immigrants and descendants of immigrants.

Remember the song “America the Beautiful?”  Show me the part where it talks about billions of people crammed into slums, the land stripped bare, the rivers choked with filth and the sky darkened with soot while Wall Street rentiers live in golden palaces a kilometer tall.  I may have missed that part.

Of course the rich will fight you, and they won’t play fair.  They will scream that you are a racist for wanting to limit the rate at which you admit additional foreign nationals into your country (a humorous comment for a rich person living in an exclusive gated community enforced by heavily armed guards).  They will claim that wanting to limit the pace at which allowing in additional foreign nationals means that you are motivated solely by a hatred of your fellow citizens with different skin colors - an absurd statement, but one which will be given power by endless repetition in the corporate-controlled mass media.  They will call you a Nazi, a ‘far right extremist’ (like FDR!), or any other convenient slander.

Stand up for yourself, humans.  If you work for a living – as most of you do - anyone pushing to rapidly increase population growth is your enemy.  Do you see how people live in Haiti or Pakistan?  Do you want your children to live like that?  No?  Then stand up and be heard.  Do not cringe before the hatred of the oligarchs, but rather welcome it, because that means that you are on the right track.   Do not vote for anyone who aims to stab you and your family in the back.  Do vote for anyone on your side, even if the mainstream press is screaming that they are racist Nazis. Otherwise stop wasting my bandwidth and go back to being good little sheep and be grateful for whatever crumbs your masters allow you to have.

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