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News :: Globalization : Human Rights : International : Labor
Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
Boston--Spring 2006 will be remembered as the largest immigrant rights movement in the history of the United States. Hundreds of protests were planned nationwide on April 9 and 10, while in Boston the number of demonstrators doubled since last week as ten of thousands marched from the Commons to Copley Square.

[Photo by Jonathan]
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“The passage of H.R. 4437 has unleashed an unprecedented movement in favor of immigrant justice and against reactionary proposals that would worsen America’s already broken immigration system,” said Deepak Bhargava, Executive Director for Center for Community Change, “Immigrant communities and allies will not be satisfied with any legislation that violates our principles for fair immigration reform.”

The slogan “Today We March, Tomorrow We Vote” was heard across the nation as the grassroots immigrant movement demanded reforms to help speed up the legalization process, reunite families, and rights to higher education. They were also present to demand workers rights. Undocumented immigrants account for about 4.9% of the civilian labor force, or 7.2 million workers out of a total U.S. labor force of 148 million.

“We are looking for better conditions to work, justice in the job, and legalization,” said Tania Martanti, a woman carrying a sign for a 27-year-old Brazilian construction worker who died after a scaffolding fell thirteen stories in Boston last week. “These guys are building America too, you know?”

Critics of immigration reform say that undocumented immigrants cost the US government millions in social services and do not pay taxes. In reality, the vast majority of the $6 to $7 billion in unclaimed social security is attributable to undocumented workers, according to Standard & Poor’s, a research and risk analysis company.

“Thanks to this mobilization we are no longer invisible,” said Luis Fernando Velez from Boston’s Service Employers International Union (SEIU), an 18-thousand member, mostly Latino union. “We are here to tell politicians that many of us are ready to vote, but they have to be ready to support the interests of the working class.” Velez said that much of their efforts are currently focused on the Justice for Janitors national living wage campaign, a topic addressed in the movie "Bread and Roses."

In their 2004 Latino Labor Report, the Pew Hispanic Center found that recently arrived Hispanic immigrants were a leading source of new workers to the economy but also among the principal recipients of wage cuts in 2004. The concentration of Latinos in relatively low-skill occupations contributed to reduced earnings for them for the second year in a row. No other major group of workers suffered a two-year decline in wages.

That would explain the significant presence of labor unions at the march today, including Hotel Union Workers, United Steel Workers of America, Local 8771, and Boston School Bus Drivers. Many of them are joining forces to participate in a national strike on May 1st since they consider immigrant rights to be mostly, a labor rights issue.

“This is not only about people who are doing low-income jobs, it’s about people who have gone to college and have their degrees,” said Raymond Brady, an Irish immigrant who finds much in common between Latino workers today and the first Irish workers who arrived in New York. He also said that immigrants nowadays come from many different economic backgrounds.

Michael Mandel, chief economist for Business Week, reports that skilled, educated immigrants represent an estimated $50 to $200 billion annual human capital. Only in regards to the housing market, Mandel found that between 2000 and 2004, the number of immigrant families who owned their own homes rose by 22% (according to Census data), accounting for one-third of the rise in family home ownership during that time period.

Meanwhile, legislators in the Senate crafted but stalled on a compromise that largely focused on enhanced border security, a guest worker program, and Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist’s recommendations to encourage most undocumented immigrants to leave the United States... "voluntarily".

This “path to legalization” established that those who had been in the US more than five years could stay and earn citizenship. Those here between two and five years could file for a temporary work visa, but would have to return to their country of origin to process it. And those here less than two years would have to return home and stand in line with others seeking legal entry.

The Judiciary panel could have a bill ready for renewed floor debate in 10 days.

This work is in the public domain.
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PHOTOS--IMMIGRANTS RIGHTS RALLY 4-10-06
10 Apr 2006
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Photos of the thousands protesting for immigrants rights in Boston on 4-10-06.
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Re: PHOTOS--IMMIGRANTS RIGHTS RALLY 4-10-06
10 Apr 2006
Great photos. This was a large demo with lots of energy and good spirit. I had fun. a few dorks tried to take down our banner but other than that everyone was pretty cool.
Immigrants Rights March and Rally - PHOTOS
10 Apr 2006
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Photos from the immigrants rights rally at Boston Commons and the march to Copley Square on April 10th 2006.
See also:
http://www.capedmaskedandarmed.com
Re: Immigrants Rights March and Rally - PHOTOS
10 Apr 2006
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A few more...
Re: Immigrants Rights March and Rally - PHOTOS
10 Apr 2006
Excellent photography!

Tonight felt great.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
In order to avoid having your comments hidden, please avoid taking other people's nicknames.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
hmmm hmmm... musing thinking:
That was definitively the *largest* recent demo Ive seen since the origonal worldwide Eve of the Iraq War one, and yesterday was the most joyful, and positive, "YES! WE CAN DO IT!" is a fab slogan it uplifts folks spirits... we were surrounded in drumming and dancing as folks of all ages and all shades danced in the streets of our sad & grey lil old Boston town.

Congradulations to the organisers!

The largest one I remember before that Eve of War one is back in the early 1980's, the people of Boston and the suburbs gathered for the Earth and against Nuclear Weapons, on our Boston Common - filling the entire end near the statehouse with teens & suits, students, workers, hippies, babies, elders, etc. Almost EVERYBODY turned out then because everybody was affected by the concept of Nuclear War and the fate of the Earth.

It looks to me like "we" only turn out en mass when the issue is PERSONAL. Thats a natural HUMAN thing to do... Make it personal, and the people rise up out of our tunnels of fear and seperation, and will stand up to be seen.

So, you want to have a large Demo, and you want people to come? Thats wrong-headed thinking.

You have the ISSUE, and the masses affected by it personally, then: thats when the people will start to rise up and make demonstration of their inner hopes dreams desires and need.

So,
what are the issues that workingclass and middle class white folks have, and why do they not stand up in unity in our streets?
musing...
What are the issues for middle class and upper class Black folk, and what would make them take the streets again as they did when younger?

Is it all a simple matter of mind control and economic fear? Too much TV and internet and tabloid reading? Too many video games?

Whats the sardonic ironic sad "i gave up on trying cause its all a waste" thing got going for it, and why do people like to stick with it more than hope and movement..?

Is it simply the Fear of getting their head cracked? Fear of being arrested and becoming un-employable w a Record of arrest?

What are the *issues that prevent people from organizing*, and why are some groups so offensive or unattractive in their approch, and others attractive and effective in turning out thousands upon thousands into the streets...

Im NOT asking for quick little answers, or smug cracks, (but we're experts on both here in Trollville USA ha ha ha!)

I am asking these questions to put them out there, for those who silently read and ignore the trolls:

Let us think on this.
Let us muse well and deeply on what the people we know & care about & love NEED in order to truely live in freedom, in an amount of human happyness, fed enougth and with clean air water food and an earth worth sharing.

Let us think very very deeply.
PEACE
Accept no Fellertutes
11 Apr 2006
the "white christian" feller posted above is a fake.

i don't care if you are christian, buddhist, jew, white, black. if you are here legally, full rights. otherwise, adios.

A Real Nice Feller
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
Soooo...what is the proposed immigration reform that these people want?

The house bill is set to stiffen the punishment for those who illegalling entered our country...the senate is softening that bill. Do these protestors not want this, or do they have an immigration reform bill which they are sponsoring?
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
Here's a good summary of requests for a comprehensive and fair immigration law:

What do we want in a legalization program?

The National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights and an ad hoc coalition of immigrant rights groups proposes the following “principles” and points as a “guide” to supporting legalization and other immigration legislation and policies:

1. We need a comprehensive program that allows undocumented immigrants from all nationalities and living in the U.S. to obtain legal permanent residency.
2. Future immigrants should also be able to come here legally and safely, have access to permanent residency, and not fear criminal prosecution for unlawful entry or exit.
3. Immigrant workers’ rights should be promoted and protected; employer sanctions and the criminalization of work must be ended. Labor laws should be strictly enforced, and immigrant workers should have the freedom to join unions to improve wages and working conditions.
4. The human rights of all immigrants should be respected in the enforcement of immigration laws throughout the U.S. and at the nation’s borders.
5. Immigrants should be able to adjust their status and reunite with families in a fair and timely way.
6. There should be an end to unfair political asylum and deportation processes and other barriers to acquiring and maintaining permanent residency.
7. All immigrants should have access to all public services and benefits including driver licenses, higher education, and health care.
8. Ensure legal access and fair treatment of immigrants who are detained, or in political asylum or deportation procedures.
9. We need foreign policies that address the root causes of migration, such as sustainable development and fair trade agreements with other countries.
10. Protection, fairness, equality and benefits should be extended to all immigrants, without sacrificing the rights of some for the rights of others.

http://www.nnirr.org/projects/immigrationreform/index.htm
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
Send them home!
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
So these protestors want to erase our immigration law...giving no respect to the current laws, which many may have already broken. Receive full amnesty to boot and basically have this natioin be borderless and embrace everyone who wants to come in? Basically, what they are requesting is a new nation named Mexamericanada? Sorry, don't think that will EVER happen, those who are here legally would never vote that in...those who are here illegally, don't get to vote, because they aren't US citizens.


I'm glad I know what they want...I thought there might have been some rights that legal immigrants weren't getting that other US citizens were...I guess that isn't what is happening. Those who are here illegally, want to not be illegal anymore...not gonna happen.
Wow, I also hope the mass of pot smokers across the country aren't next searching for "equal rights".
another idea
11 Apr 2006
Punish the American Corportaions that exploit empoverished workers. Sue Sue Sue, but who can afford to?

Something can be LEGAL,
but it doesnt make it RIGHT.

Some may cry out to "send em home"
but its all not that simple -
we are living in one world, we are one "race"
(race is a sad outdated oppresive construct)
we happen to have CLASS ISSUES, people.
PEACE
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
"So these protestors want to erase our immigration law..."

You mean the law that is bringing wages down for everyone while exploiting immigrant workers? Yup, that's about right...
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
"You mean the law that is bringing wages down for everyone while exploiting immigrant workers? "

First, I don't see how you can use the term explotation when these individuals come to America, of their own free will. Also, I believe the only that would be "exploited" are the ones here illegally. The ones who are legal, have the same rights as any US Citizen...what you're asking for is that non-US Citizens obtain our rights...um, no...you have to be a US Citizen to get those.

Also, is the law bringing wages down or the people breaking the law? It takes 2 to tango, the employers couldn't hire the illegal immigrants at slave wages if there were no illegal immigrants here. The house bill is trying to crack down on the illegal immigrants and businesses who support them....that's half of what you want...the other half won't happen.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
"I believe the only that would be "exploited" are the ones here illegally"

In a "globalized" economy, yes indeed. But we're back to square 1. The question is why do they risk everything and are willing to get separated from their families and culture to come here illegally... Is it because they are in need? Is it because globalization is not really helping the poor but rather pushing people thru borders to get fair wages and "better" livelihoods?

Many immigrants DO come here legally and overstay their visas because the US legal system doesn't provide them with an easier way to become legalized...
Immigrant's Rights March / Photo-Essay
11 Apr 2006
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Nearly 8,000 protesters took to the street in anticipation of Washington's actions regarding immigration.
See also:
http://metropolphotos.com
Related stories on this site:
Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
"The question is why do they risk everything and are willing to get separated from their families and culture to come here illegally... Is it because they are in need?"
Good question, and the solution needs to come from their country of origin, not the country they flock to...not Americas problem. People have complained that Americans have lost jobs to other countries due to our free trade agreements, now you think that these same agreements and jobs lost to foreign countries do not exist? And they come here looking for work that we've already shipped to their countries?

"Many immigrants DO come here legally and overstay their visas because the US legal system doesn't provide them with an easier way to become legalized..."
Agreed...and when their visa expires...what does the law say they should do? Leave? So if they do not, they would be kind illegally in America...agreed? Why should we allow an easier system to become a citizen..it takes 11 years or something right...so you go home and wait...you don't break the law and wait. Why was this not a problem until we said we were going to enforce the law?
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
Let me help clarify the "not America's problem" statement that I made.

A corporation not paying a worker a living wage in another country, is something that other country needs to address, not the US. Why doesn't Mexico address this problem and force the employer to pay a better wage? Then they don't have to lose their population...or is it that Mexico is overpopulated? Could that be why they are pushing their problems onto America?
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
Unfortunately that "other country" cannot "address" the issue of a corporation not paying a worker a living wage because they do not have the power to do so. The US has made sure of that thought the use of the WTO, NAFTA, IMF, WORLD BANK and other so called "free trade deals". The idea behind all of these institutions is to destroy local sovereignty of other non-western nations so that their own governments are powerless to protect their own populations from exploitation.

Most Latin American immigrants in the US today are actually refugees. Economic refugees fleeing US imposed policies and/or the after effects of US backed right-wing dictators.

The reason immigrants are here in the first place is almost never addressed. The reason is the policies of the United States, corporate globalization, Neo-liberalism and US backed economic policies. Stop those things and the flow of refugees will slow to a trickle.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
Jones, here's some more info about "free" trade agreements and such:

http://www.globalexchange.org/campaigns/ftaa/background.html

Much of these policies are indeed "America's problem" since it affects us directly as well. Companies shipping jobs overseas for lower wages are a result of these policies...
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
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U.S. creates immigrants
11 Apr 2006
"Everyone here should think long and hard about what is happening in America today. We have a government that creates immigrants by the millions and then mistreats them. I say the U.S. creates immigrants the old-fashioned way. If you have tyranny and oppression and famine and poverty around the world, you are going to have immigrants coming to the U.S. No wall is going to stop them. No fence with barbed wire on the Mexican border or no frozen moat on the Canadian border is going to stop them. It will just make it easier to arrest and brutalize them. We don't need a wall. We need a new foreign policy, so people can make a decent living and live in peace in their home countries."

--Roger Toussaint, president of the Transport Workers Union NYC.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
Jonathan...let's assume your theory is true...let's assume these "free trade" agreements may have caused this...keep your "getting to the root of the problem" ideas flowing. Why do you think American companies look to other nations for workers? Simple greed you may call it? I would say that some of the blame would have to fall on America's Unions, wouldn't you? Driving up the wages of low or non-skilled workers kind of takes that sector of our economy away doesn't it? Sure it was initially done to protect American workers, but it's far past that now, wouldn't you agree? An assembly line worker making more than a teacher or a nurse?

My point isn't to bash unions...it's to get you to understand that this blame game that you are playing can go on for eternity. Regardless of who is to blame, the US didn't make these agreements on their own. If the other countries left the door open for their citizens to be exploited in their own country...that again, is not our problem. Their leaders agreed to it...once again, it takes 2 to tango. That governmental agreement still does not give anyone the right to break a law...period.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
You are one of the few people who posts here who actually answers the question he/she is asked (and IMHO you make good points). Keep up the good work! Maybe others will catch on instead of ignoring directed questions and replying with unintelligent comments like "who cares what the law is, the US is pure evil so there are no arguments justifying any action the US takes." (Not to take issue with people who disagree with Jones, there are those who reply in a like manner to Jones with opposite opinions and you as well are to be commended. But it seems to me most post are knee-jerk reactionaries, as is much of America.)
intelligent idea
11 Apr 2006
Thanks for the quote ending
.."We don't need a wall. We need a new foreign policy, so people can make a decent living and live in peace in their home countries."

its so true.
Peace
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
No Jones, I would not agree at all. Seems to me you have little understanding of global economics and the ways corporate capitalism works. To say that corporations are moving to other nations to exploit workers because it is harder now to exploit workers here is somewhat true. However the problem is that the corporations are exploiting people, not that unions are trying to stop that exploitation. Corporations are forced to yield higher and higher profits by market presses, they will therefore always look for places with no environmental, workers rights or safety laws - this is global economics 101. It has nothing to do with paying workers a good wage. Also there is not such think as unskilled labor.


If you would like to talk intelligently about the way the US forces control over the politics and economics of other nations and forced them to open their boarders to corporate exploitation...I would suggest starting with the best selling book "confessions of an economic hit man" by John Perkins. Than maybe we can talk, otherwise you are not making logical or economic sense with your conjectures here.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
Also there is NO SUCH THING as "unskilled labor".

(typing too fast)
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
So, this is the part of the discussion, where you stop responding and begin personal attacks?

" Corporations are forced to yield higher and higher profits by market presses, they will therefore always look for places..." not to exploit anything, as you assert. That is crazy "evil corporation" montra. Let's stick to facts...business want good PR and don't want to be known as whoremongers, just as much as they want to make a buck. I work for a major corporation and see all the good they do and all they give back to their community. Maybe the "brain washing" you received in your "100 level class" didn't teach you the "real world", have you ever considered that?

No such thing as un-skilled labor? Do you think it takes real talent or skill to pick crops, sort mail packages, make beds, check people into hotels, or serve people food? I can tell you from experience, it does not. Anyone off the street can do any of these activities with minimal training.

The company will take cost/return into account when they make their decisions, if they can train others overseas for the same cost as those in America who demand twice the pay...why wouldn't they leave? Wouldn't the people who unnecessarily drive up wages in America have to take some responsibility for driving up those wages? To the corporation, the worker is interchangeable, which is that attitude Americans take exception to. We tend to believe American workers add something to the job that others don't. Obviously some of the major corporations don't agree that it's worth the asking price, so they leave...globally, worker supply is higher than demand, so they don't have to "bend" to the Union demands.

We're way off track of the illegal immigrant debate...sorry...but while we're looking for the "root cause", I guess it plays a role in that.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
11 Apr 2006
Excellent article on the history of Immigrantion in the US/
-----------------------------
The War On Immigrants - by Stephen Lendman
http://www.zmag.org/content/showarticle.cfm?SectionID=30&ItemID=10077
attn:jones
11 Apr 2006
Hey Jones,

Two things: First, is it enjoyable picking fruit or sorting mail or cleaning toilets? No it's hard, boring fucking work and anyone who does it for eight hours a day should be compensated for having to put up with it.

It's not the unions that are forcing companies out. If the companies took cuts from the top salaried folks, then they could easily stay; but their wages keep on going up and up and the profits for people who own buisness stocks and do no work keep on going up and up and up.

Any necessary job for our well being should be compensated as such. We all should be getting the necessities of life according to what we need as long as we are contributing according to our ability and it's everyone's problem to make sure that we're all able to contribute according to our ability.

The rich and owning classes are the problem and the government that props them up. It's convenient for them that working class people blame each other as the problem. It's the age old tactic of control: divide and rule. We will all be ruled until we realize who is doing the ruling and who is being ruled and stand in solidarity across racial, national, and other lines against our common oppressors. Until we stop allowing ourselves to be pitted against each other, we're all fucked.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
12 Apr 2006
you know, i was at the first rally a couple weeks back, and this one too, and while i was thrilled at the display of people's home countries' flags the first time, this time, there was a sea of redwhiteand blues everywhere. wonder if this was a conscious decision on the part of the organizers- must have been right? what's the deal? i for one was much happier with people being honestly proud of their heritages and displaying their home flags. this american flag business seems like a pr stunt.

also, who made up those thousands of 'tomorrow we vote' signs? i didn't look too closely but it seemed there wasn't any small print identifying any sponsoring organization. best i can tell, there has been a severe watering down of the message and the spirit of the demos, at least here in boston, in exchange for mainstream support, from the cardinal, and the democraps and all the media... i didn't really see any politically radical messages at this demo (except for the lone minuteman just before the march reached copley). maybe the real radical message is the huge turnout and demands for total legalization instead of 'compromises' which divide this movement according to how long its participants have been here.

i guess we'll see if the demands and marches have teeth on mayday, with the call for a nationwide general strike of students and workers, and direct actions here in boston...
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
12 Apr 2006
"First, is it enjoyable picking fruit or sorting mail or cleaning toilets? No it's hard, boring fucking work and anyone who does it for eight hours a day should be compensated for having to put up with it."

Not really, I've done them all, is there anything wrong with putting your time in at the bottom? It makes you a stronger person. These jobs also do not take any special skill to do it...that's the point. You can be easily replaced by many others who can do what you do. Supply is high, demand is rather low. You get paid based on the skill sets you bring to the job. That's why these are low pay...because they require that you bring in minnimal skill. If you don't want to do these jobs, do the best you can and work your way up..but you aren't too good to do them. That is what I think most Americans think of these jobs.

"If the companies took cuts from the top salaried folks, then they could easily stay; but their wages keep on going up and up and the profits for people who own buisness stocks and do no work keep on going up and up and up."

You honestly think CEO's/Owners/Managers/Supervisors do no work? It's a full time job to babysit some of the workers...let alone put up with and handle all the corporate bs. They are the leaders of the company...if their stock doesn't rise or they don't have a good quater, their head is on the chopping block, not yours. They make the decisions that make or break the company. CEO's and top execs are also the ones who are generally unemployed the longest...if they do get fired or laid off. There aren't as many job openings that meet their qualifications (skill sets) that they bring to the table. Just something that I don't think you consider...

"We all should be getting the necessities of life according to what we need as long as we are contributing according to our ability and it's everyone's problem to make sure that we're all able to contribute according to our ability."

Negative Ghost Rider...not in my America. We are not a communist state. You meet your needs according to your own ability in this land. We're all created equal by our creator, right? If we're all equal, then we all have the same ability...so go and meet your needs. Stop looking to the government for handouts...unless your ability in whining is greater than mine :)
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
12 Apr 2006
"You get paid based on the skill sets you bring to the job. That's why these are low pay...because they require that you bring in minnimal skill. If you don't want to do these jobs, do the best you can and work your way up..but you aren't too good to do them. That is what I think most Americans think of these jobs."

That's the point: jobs shouldn't be paid according to particular "skills", though all jobs take skills. They should be paid according to whether you're putting in the time and working hard at it. You're not recognizing that the system flaw is that it NEEDS manual laborers and service workers ect. So you can't assume that people put in their time and then move on because there will always be folks who need to do those jobs.

"You honestly think CEO's/Owners/Managers/Supervisors do no work? "

No I think that owners don't work; every worker should own the business equally or it should be owned by the local community. Decisions should be made collectively by the local community and the people who work the job. People who do "managerial" work, do work, but they should be paid the same as anybody else. People shouldn't be able to make hundreds of thousands of dollars (or millions in some cases) because that's only coming from their having the power to value their labor at much higher levels. It has nothing to do with the invisible hand. The people at the top make the salary decisions and they pay themselves the most... go figure.

"We are not a communist state."

Good, I don't want to live under a "communist state", I think that we should have no goverment only federated community controlled social programs and economies, etc.

"We're all created equal by our creator, right? If we're all equal, then we all have the same ability...so go and meet your needs. "

Yes we are all created equally; but it's an equality of difference: different abilities, different tastes, different things to contribute.... our society only values certain contributions and not others. Actually, the people in power make the decisions on what is to be valuted and then drill in into us with the school system, the media, and a million other ways. We all need to be in power so that no one is in power. Leadership should be of influence and empowerment, not command and control.

"Stop looking to the government for handouts...unless your ability in whining is greater than mine :)"

Again I'm not looking to government. But I do think that while the system is fucked the way it is, we sure as hell better have some safety nets. I am completely against people not contributing as much as they can; but I also think that there better well be opportunities for people to contribute and ultimately people better be getting their full share for their labor. By from each according to their ability, children and seniors shouldn't have to work to get taken care of, and people with certain disabilities that would bar them from certain types of employment shouldn't have to be penalized for it. Everyone who physically and mentally can contribute should have to contribute; but they should get back the same as everyone else who contributes. Motivation will come socially... to gain respect socially. That's how it's worked in numrous societies in the past and that's how it could work in a free society. But first we need to overthrow our common oppressors and stop fighting each other, then we can reconstruct our society based on direct democracy and community controlled economies of equity.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
12 Apr 2006
I think I'm beginning to sound like a broken record...but I don't think you understand that the manangement possess skills that not everyone has. Since the supply is less, they get paid more. Almost anyone can do grunt work, picking fruit, making a bed, serving food are all things that anyone can do, that is why it's not valued or paid as much. Nobody is saying it isn't hard work, it really is...I've done all of these jobs. But the supply of non-educated, low skill workers is very high, competition is high, so the pay is low. That is simple economics.

I don't think I've ever worked for a manager who was not proficient in the job they asked me to do. I'm sure there are some bad corporations and some bad managers, nobody is perfect. If you've ever had a bad manager, I think you'd agree that not anyone can supervise. It takes a special, generally learned, but sometimes unteachable skill to manage people. You not only have to manage what your workers do, but the interpersonal relationships that can make or break your company. Sometimes you either have it or you don't. Many workers don't have this perspective in mind and only look out for #1.

So if this "special skill" is hard to find...that person deserves more compensation for their "rare" skill. Kind of the reason that diamonds are more valuable than topaz. Not because the jewelry corporations just know what we like and want to stick it to us, the diamond is harder to find and probably in higher demand. Sorry, I'm not up on my jewel demand knowledge, but hopefully you can get the point of the analogy.

You obviously have the right to your opinion...I don't want to try and change yours. Although I don't think that you realize what you are proposing has been tried before and ALWAYS fails, leaving the countries in extreme poverty. If it hasn't failed yet, the citizens have zero personal freedoms or rights (ie. China, Cuba). Call it what you want communist, socialist, Marxist, Leninist, social democrat...whatever. The majority of Americans will never go for it, you are in a vast minority.

While the "theory" is grand and very romantic...people are, as you seem to only label the corporations, inherently evil. If we could have a society as you request, but under the Christian faith...I would be 50% for it. Not saying that Christianity has always been void of corruption, but this would give us a morality guide to put others ahead of yourself (which is essentially what you're wanting). Looking to a higher power is a greater guide than a piece of paper (a constitution). The other 50% of me would still want everyone to make their own way.
April showers bring spring flowers
12 Apr 2006
as the hardy laborers resume the tasks no American will do, (not a one, the same team that looked for WMD looked for the American who would do the same job asan illegal immigrant) the strong winds of contention cease to blow. As spring's gentle showers drip like caresses around my ears, I have a vision. My vision is of millions of illegal immigrants smiling in beautific gratitude at the great-heated people of the United States of America. All are One. All are Equal. All will be Brothers and Sisters in the Noble Experiment of Democracy. As the newly sworn in citizens, all 50 milliion of them, cast their first ballots (printed in Spanish), the angelic glow around the liberal sponsors of immigration "rights" turns to a hellish glow as they realize: these people are pro-life, they like tax cuts, they don't want their daughters to work, and they own guns!

They are Conservatives!!!!!!!!!! Deport 'Em.

Yes We Can.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
12 Apr 2006
"But the supply of non-educated, low skill workers is very high, competition is high, so the pay is low. That is simple economics."

I understand how economics is taught. What I'm saying is it's wrong. Supply and Demand concerning labor only actually speaks about vulnerability and leverage. I don't think that might makes right; but that's the way our system works. It's not democratic. You did describe how the system works; but that's not how it SHOULD work.

Sure, certain people have certain skills and certain people have other skills; but should that entitle them to frivilous and excessive luxury at the expense of people's needs and simple wants? If you think so, I'm dissapointed.

"Sorry, I'm not up on my jewel demand knowledge, but hopefully you can get the point of the analogy."

It's a bad analogy, you can't compare human beings to jewels. Humans aren't commodities and we're all different.

"Although I don't think that you realize what you are proposing has been tried before and ALWAYS fails, leaving the countries in extreme poverty. If it hasn't failed yet, the citizens have zero personal freedoms or rights (ie. China, Cuba). Call it what you want communist, socialist, Marxist, Leninist, social democrat...whatever."

Actually you're wrong. All of these examples you give are State "Communist" examples (really just a form of State Capitalism). I don't believe in such centralized authoritarian structures, I believe in freedom. That's why I'm an anarchist communist: no rich, no poor... everyone contributes and everyone gets their needs met. And when organized anarchist communist societies have been tried, they have been succesful (such as in Spain in '36). They didn't last because the combined forces of Hitler, Mussolini, Franco, Stalin, and capitalist country blockades wiped them out.

"The majority of Americans will never go for it, you are in a vast minority."

That's your opinion. I think most people love freedom and love justice and fairness. But most people are divided against each other and don't feel empowered or see other options.

"While the "theory" is grand and very romantic...people are, as you seem to only label the corporations, inherently evil. "

I disagree. All people have the capacity for good and the capacity for bad. If we build strong communities and societies based on freedom and empowerment and justice, etc. where we eliminate all forms of oppression. People will most likely tend towards good. We need to figure out how we are supporting environments that maximize everyone's potential to contribute and then we'll all benefit from greater contributions from everyone.

I want everyone to do as they want also... as long as it's not oppressing and exploiting others or benefitting off the exploitation and oppression of others. Economics are necessarily socially and historically based. We can only understand weath by understanding the social and historical relationships and interactions that developed it. It's not an individual thing despite what the dominant economic view might be. Economics used to be correctly more understood as a social science before in the late 1800s economists took one particular economic theory and made it THE economic theory and treated it like a hard science... which is ridiculous because you can't take social relationships and interactions and treat it like chemical interactions. So underneath economics is a certain set of assumptions about narrow conceptions of anti-social "self-interest" and others. Check out Karl Polanyi's (spelling?) "The Great Transformation" to find out about the nature, and effect of the rise of these "free" market economy ideologies and how economies worked before this... and this can allow us to think how they could work.
Re: Immigrant's Rights March / Photo-Essay
12 Apr 2006
this is high quality work julian. keep it up.
Re: Immigrant's Rights March / Photo-Essay
12 Apr 2006
It is great, I believe that they have the right to be in this country. Since they contribute to the USA.
Re: Immigrant's Rights March / Photo-Essay
12 Apr 2006
Sean I'm glad you enjoyed the march. But it sounds like you're exoticizing this woman because she's spanish. I doubt she'd like to be objectified that way by being reduced to an exoticized stereotype. Just a thought...
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
13 Apr 2006
this bill is horrible. god. a felony. . . . .

i keep thinking about that special ed teacher they deported last year. . . . . . . for a technicality on some form that the office filled out illegibly. And then I think of some of the people who were born here . . . . whose children are desparate for special ed teachers. . . . . . . and still more who just. . . . .watch televsion and eat and drive around and dont' know anything about the need for special ed teachers, or let someone else do that work. . . . . . about all the horrible jobs that have to get done(liek cleanign toilets) that get stuck on the heads of people at half the going rate. . . . . based on boagus crappolla like race and nationality. . . . . . this kind of thing makes no sense to me, no sense. a felony?? isn't that for people who KILL peopel or RAPE them or BURN DOWN people's HOUSES? SERIOUS things? christ. . . . . . barbaric. . . . . . .

i'm glad to see people out in the street. i'm afraid i've lost my faith in street protests, lately, i wish i could find it again, in some resulting sudden justice or evolution. . . . . . but i stopped by for alittle bit between classes. . . . . but i hope it helps STOP this thing, all the same. . . . .
Analogy
13 Apr 2006
2 a : resemblance in some particulars between things otherwise unlike.

While jewels and humans are definitely different, the supply/demand aspect of their economic value is what makes the analogy accurate.

"I think most people love freedom and love justice and fairness"

I believe we have this in our current system. I totally see it fair that somebody who works 60+ hours a week, after working their but off to get through college, maybe even having an MBA to making 2-10 times more than more than somebody who didn't graduate high school and checks you out at Wal-Mart. It wouldn't be fair if they made the same wage OR had the same benefits. Please explain how that is fair.

In this society you profess...what would be your motivation to exploit your own talents and be all you can be? Couldn't you just slide by and get everything you want by sitting on your rear? Too many would take advantage of that situation...not enough would rise to the top.

I also think that our society is past the point where everyone needs to do manual labor. Our ancestors have created enough innovations that allow fewer people to do more work in that sector of the economy. Why would we want to go back in time as a society?
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
13 Apr 2006
"I want everyone to do as they want also... as long as it's not oppressing and exploiting others or benefitting off the exploitation and oppression of others."

t&g: 2 comments/questions. 1) You want peolpe to do what they want and you want people to rely on each other for basic needs. Houses need to get built, food must get produced, etc. What do you do when not enough people in your society *want* to produce food for the others? That's why the market makes at least some sense, higher wage is offered to make sure there are enough people producing food since wage can affect the desire to do something.

You need some mechanism, anyway, to make sure enough of the correct work is being done to meet everyone's needs. So far as I can tell, you either need to offer different wages for different jobs or you need some sort of planning (by dictator, by direct vote, however you prefer) of forcing people to do jobs that may not have been their first choice.

2. I'm sure some version of your idea society was in practice 10's of thousands of years ago. It seems not so different from how primates live today. I personally like the advancements brought by how our economy is structured, but if you're happy living as a primate then I can better understand your position.

Jones: Diamonds are a bad example. The price is so high more because de Beers (sp?) has something like 80% of the diamond market to themselves and stores vast numbers of diamonds, releasing them in a controlled way to keep prices artificially high. But your point is still well-taken/understood. :-) It also presents a good argument for why pure capitalism without laws is bad as it demonstrates that monopoly power introduces huge inefficiences in markets. A market economy and a government regulating said market through laws go hand in hand.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
13 Apr 2006
Oh, now I remember the third comment I wanted to make. Seeing as I'm talking about how our economy actually runs and not about how people think it should run, I'll assume it's fair for me to use standard economics logic.

There are plenty of great reasons for making pro-"illegal" immigrant posts / anti-current legislation posts. However, one of them is NOT that they do the jobs Americans don't want to do. If they are doing dirty jobs that need to be done, and the "illegal" immigrants weren't here to do them, there would be a much smaller supply of workers to do said jobs. Since they are undesirable jobs, they would have to offer higher wage to entice uninterested Americans into doing the jobs. Jobs that need doing get done, so this argument is bogus, please make good arguments in support of the immigrants.
Re: Boston Participates in a Nationwide Mobilization for Immigrant and Labor Rights
16 Apr 2006
hey, the photo essey is great thanks folks!
be well be real keep on keeping on!
PEACE