Shall we take a look at our economy from a new angle? From the perspective of people, rather than simply profits? We allege to be a capitalist economy. We say the market will take care of everything. Just give entrepreneurs the room to do their thing, and all will be well.
This belief tells us that supply and demand are the key to the market. If so, let’s consider our current situation. It is claimed that we have too many low-paying jobs going unfilled. No one wants them because they do not pay a living wage.
Simultaneously, it is noteworthy that some 4500 refugees from southern countries are attempting to enter the United States because they need and want jobs. Is this not a classic example of supply and demand meeting one another’s needs? We have a need for more low cost labor, and we have some desperate people who are begging for jobs.
What obstacles prohibit these two facts from coinciding toward a solution?
One argument is that these immigrants will steal jobs from our own people. If so, why haven’t our current unemployed taken the available jobs? Isn’t it because most of them don’t pay a living wage?
Another argument is that the immigrants are all criminals. Any rational person knows that is a political tactic to appeal to one third of our people supporting the current administration.
A third argument is that these immigrants don’t speak English. Neither do several million of present farm workers without whom we would not have our basic food supply. Why do we not create schools to teach them English, provide them the status of legal workers, and design a path to eventually becoming American citizens?
A fourth argument is that unemployed and immigrants are not trained to do the jobs. Again, why do we not create schools to accomplish that task?
How might we structure English and job training and a pathway to American citizenship? Why should there not be a collaboration between corporations and the government, whereby the giant corporations now holding billions of dollars of accumulated profits invest capital in our unemployed and in immigrants?
Why are corporations not investing in the American people? Is it not because they are nakedly self interested to the exclusion of at least ten percent of our people? Is it not conceivable that some people might consider that to be un-American?
What is America’s most valuable asset? It’s not gold. Or real estate. Or other commodities. It’s not even services. It is people. A nation does not exist without people. Its very purpose is its people. In our corporations’ obsession with profits, we appear to have all forgotten that fact.
People and profits are not mutually exclusive. They should be inclusive. One tenth of our people presently don’t have adequate jobs or income. The 9/10ths with jobs often work 45 – 60 hours a week.
It is a relatively simple calculation to envision reducing the workweek for all people to, say, 30 hours, and training and sharing the freed-up work with those now unemployed. And with immigrants needing jobs. Would it not also be a rational way to treat unemployed and immigrants as we would wish to be treated if we were in their shoes?
What is the main objection to such a concept? That it would reduce the profits of the corporations. Even that is a dubious supposition. How, instead, might such a concept help the economy and its people and its corporations and its government?
It would recover ten percent of our population and make them real consumers. It would provide them the income to afford homes. It would free up millions of employees now working excessive job hours to spend time with their families. It would make our economy people based. It would reduce welfare costs.
Couple the idea I’ve previously presented of certain government land being offered for purchase by land-poor citizens with the then logical fact, when they filled these new jobs, they would be able to work for far lower wages. That would reduce corporations’ labor costs; and it would allow the government to begin reducing the welfare system.
I am suggesting a reduction in our present Socialism for Corporations and an increase in real Capitalism. We have an illogical economic system. A company like Walmart, as one example only, could not exist in its present configuration if it were not able to foist many of its workers onto welfare. We citizens through our taxes help pay Walmart’s employees via welfare!
Do you like paying much of their employee expense, thereby making their owners immensely wealthy? I’m not maliciously picking on them. I’m pointing out how utterly illogical our economic system is. If a corporation is paying its employees partly through welfare, it is not a valid business. It is a confidence game benefitting its owners at the cost of its employees and the rest of the U.S. population.
Do you not believe that we have the brainpower to bring about such changes? It is an issue of facing the facts of our situation and doing something about it. No small job, I agree. But facing facts is our first step.
Finally, why do we not see immigrants as an opportunity instead of an alleged “Invasion” by supposed criminals? This invasion theory is utterly unsupported by evidence. I contend it is purely a political tactic of a politician eager to keep his new highly profitable job.