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  • SMcIntyre
    +3

    If you have to cheat to win, you're not actually winning. If those farms can't compete on the open market without the benefit of illegal labor then they shouldn't exist, and it's really not any more complex than that. So forgive me if I don't shed a tear for the guy in your article who spend years profiting from hiring illegal labor now that he's being forced to face the consequences of his actions.

    And being from Florida, I'm perfectly comfortable with my grasp on the economics of the Agricultural Industry thanks. Maybe someone could offer you a refresher.

    • AdelleChattre
      +2

      There may be consequences around the bulk of the agricultural industry going broke, I’m thinking. Maybe it’s for the best, as you say. I mean, I was foolish enough to think that migrant farm laboring families that together with their children still make less than a dollar an hour probably weren’t the best choice as to who to hunt for sport when it came right down to it, but apparently I was wrong about that as well. Do tell, shall we breed and eat the migrant laborers whilst the crops lie fallow?

      • SMcIntyre (edited 3 years ago)
        +1

        Settle down there Chicken Little, the agricultural industry isn't going to go broke just because they have to start operating within the law. Automation is well on the way to making human labor in agriculture largely obsolete anyway. Self-driving harvesters are already hitting the market, as are smaller autonomous robots and drones that can help with crop management. So the agricultural industry isn't going anywhere anytime soon.

        I mean, I was foolish enough to think that migrant farm laboring families that together with their children still make less than a dollar an hour probably weren’t the best choice as to who to hunt for sport when it came right down to it, but apparently I was wrong about that as well.

        Well you certainly do seem foolish, so I guess on that point you and I are in complete agreement.

        Your apparent defense of de facto slavery aside (which is a topic we're absolutely going to get back to) for a moment, your argument is based on a flawed premise. If the workers are in this country legally, then they have nothing to worry about. If they're in the country illegally then they're not migrants, they're criminals.

        So, now tell us more about how you're in favor of having a perpetually exploited class of cheap labor that's paid "less than a dollar an hour". These people are here illegally, they're being exploited by corrupt farm owners, doing physically demanding outdoor labor in all kinds of weather, doing it all for pennies on the dollar, and you're perfectly fine with all of that so long as you don't have to shell out more for your tomatoes?

        • AdelleChattre
          +3

          If automation could replace those workers, it already would have. Whereas we've already seen when migrant labor is hounded off, crops are left to rot. It's a fairly recent conceit that migrant labor is by reason of being in the country at all therefore illegal.

          Historically migrant labor hadn't been criminalized, and has been allowed in more modern times under guest worker programs. The 'flawed premise' you accuse me of, not buying into that criminalization of migrant labor itself, is practical realism. It's fun, though, that you'll make believe people are all-of-a-sudden illegal in and of themselves and tell me that's my problem. You know history reaches back further than World War Two, right? That migrant labor didn't first occur in Bush the Elder's single term in office?

          Since you're asking, no, I'm not all for states like Alabama and Georgia requiring a permanent underclass of slaves. I grew up in Oregon, and I've seen the conditions and housing afforded to migrant labor. I've supported farm workers' unions like PCUN, who're organizing and bargaining for better. And I've also had that creeping sensation during harvest when you've got crews picking and you know the arithmetic and the job means hard work for low pay and still you've gotta sustain folks.

          For that matter, I'm not 100% sure we got it right around the ag exception for child labor laws.

          Realistically, either you give up the notion that migrant labor is a criminal underclass in urgent need of incarceration in lucrative private prisons that in turn drive the pokitical fortunes of nativist bigots campaigning on herding up brown folks with a new, more malevolent kind of cowboy, or yes, ag businesses are failing and crops go to rot. History is fairly dramatic on that point.

          Myself, I would think words about a permanent underclass making pennies an hour would stock in your throat, because with your strict 'no illegals' policy and your principled opposition to minimum wage, aren't you just looking to substitute one poverty-stricken slave class for another? Can you see how criminalization of an underclass serves to keep the boot on their neck?

          Even if they are the 'most dangerous game.'

        • SMcIntyre
          +3

          If automation could replace those workers, it already would have.

          Not only is that not true, but it clearly demonstrates that you have no understanding of even basic Economics.

          Automation hasn't been widely implemented in the agricultural industry because it's not yet cost effective when compared to dirt-cheap illegal labor, it has nothing to do with the viability of the technology. It's the same situation that existed in the fast food industry. We've had the technology for nearly completely automated fast food restaurants since the early 1960s, but at the time it wasn't cost effective when compared to human labor so there was little development of the tech. Now that human labor is quickly reaching the point where it's becoming more expensive than automation, we're seeing waves of restaurants converting to automation technology. The same thing will happen in agriculture.

          Historically migrant labor hadn't been criminalized, and has been allowed in more modern times under guest worker programs.

          So your argument is: "It wasn't illegal until it was"? Historically it was also permissible for people to own other people as property and for everyone but white males to be considered three-fifths of a human. Times change. Societies grow and adapt, as do their needs. Since 1940 our population has nearly tripled, to the point where the United States is now the third most populous country on the planet. At the same time, our economy has become much less labor dependent than it used to be. We don't need to import more people.

          Realistically, either you give up the notion that migrant labor is a criminal underclass in urgent need of incarceration in lucrative private prisons that in turn drive the pokitical fortunes of nativist bigots campaigning on herding up brown folks with a new, more malevolent kind of cowboy, or yes, ag businesses are failing and crops go to rot.

          And right on cue here comes the race card. You're incapable of making a valid argument on the merits so it's time to go with the old "you hate brown folks" routine. It's as predictable as it is pathetic.

          Myself, I would think words about a permanent underclass making pennies an hour would stock in your throat, because with your strict 'no illegals' policy and your principled opposition to minimum wage, aren't you just looking to substitute one poverty-stricken slave class for another?

          Again, if you understood basic economics you'd already understand that that's a ridiculous question.

          I'm against illegal immigration because they're supplying industry demand for labor without causing a subsequent increase in the cost of labor. Had these farms played by the rules to start with, wages would've risen to meet their labor demands and the ever increasing cost of labor would've led to new innovations in the industry to increase productivity. By supplying the industry with counterfeit labor, illegals are suppressing wages and suppressing industry innovation, neither of which are good for the economy.

          I'm against the minimum wage because it creates the very class of perpetually poverty-stricken people we're talking about. The minimum wage is a price floor on labor, and as anyone who has ever taken Intro to Macro knows, price floors create surpluses. In this case though instead of a warehouse full of goods, that "surplus" is a class of people who have been- by Government mandate, permanently priced out of the labor market. It makes it impossible for people who a...

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        • AdelleChattre
          +4
          @SMcIntyre -

          You seem to be arguing that automation in fact could replace people if only we could get rid of the people. As cleverly as that line of magical thinking avoids real difficulties, there is still some nagging theoretical difficulty around how bankrupt businesses are going to roll out their brilliant automation strategies. Are you with me here? Because automation’s not feasible now, you cover the agricultural sector with a handkerchief and wave your magic wand, and all of a sudden Dorothy and Toto are the only non-androids on the family farm. Is the secret ingredient ICE indefinite detention labor? Gosh, if automation was really about to eliminate the problem of migrant labor anyway, I wonder if that would mean the jobs bonanza for naturally-born U.S. persons you’re after would be less than the lavish workers’ paradise you make it out to be?

          Is migrant labor crime? I don’t think so. Historically, it’s not been. Why should it be now? Bonus points if you can convince me without calling me names.

          Does seem like you’re blaming agriculture for not playing by rules that’ve been drawn up lately to justify rounding up people and putting them into camps. People have gone where the work was, when it was, even when it was hard work for lousy pay, for a long time. A lot longer than the emergence of publicly-traded private prison corporations desperate to populate their internment camps. You might reconsider using the phrase ‘counterfeit labor’ as it comes off as a tin-eared euphemism. If you’re not satisfied with the resolution of the Mexican-American War, seems a bit late to declare hostilities are back on.

          Your notion a minimum wage creates peasantry seems well beyond daft to me, but then again I’ve never understood the perilous logic of insisting that holding a job means as little as humanly possible. No offense, it’s blindingly obvious is all.

        • SMcIntyre
          +1
          @AdelleChattre -

          You're shtick is getting old.

          Try again when you have something to actually contribute to the discussion more substantive than your nonsensical rambling.

        • AdelleChattre
          +1
          @SMcIntyre -

          Hey, good luck with that M.B.A.!