By S.T. Patrick
Americans are speedily tumbling toward a crossroads in labor as “the Great Resignation” continues, Covid-related employment mandates sweep throughout the country, families still survive on the increased unemployment and food stamp payouts of pandemic-inspired policies, and the Biden administration continues to encourage foreign workers to take both white- and blue-collar jobs.
The four-pronged jobs program was included in the immigration expansion bill which was blocked. It was then copied and pasted into the Build Back Better bill, which is also now blocked. The Biden administration seeks to further expand the mid-level white-collar job market for what is now 1.5 million mid-skilled (college graduate), “non-immigrant” (they are here specifically on work visas), foreign, white-collar workers. These are the typical careers that newly graduated young Americans chase. These are the entry-level corporate positions that are the first step on the corporate ladder.
Pushing American graduates out of these markets (or further increasing competition for entry) increases the difficulty of immediately repaying college debt, forces some graduates to take unskilled positions solely for some form of employment, and, once again, has Americans debating the true value of a college education. The goal of the Biden administration, though, was to keep white-collar employment healthy, regardless of who fills the positions. The blue-collar job market is struggling as fast-food restaurants, convenience stores, and retail outlets are struggling to find anyone to take those positions, as, in many states, unemployment and public aid pays the average American more than McDonald’s or Wal-mart. Meanwhile, corporate income is up, billionaires have increased their wealth exponentially, and the Walmarts and Amazons of the world have shown record profits throughout the Covid era.
As Neil Munro wrote for online news source “Breitbart”:
Executives use this vast and powerless green card workforce to weaken the workplace power of the U.S. progressional class. In recent years, business scandals have shown that U.S. professionals lose arguments with the C-suite executives for decent salaries, product quality, innovative research, data privacy, information security, or for corporate compliance with federal law, including lawsuits—partly because the executives believe the green card workforce generates short-term stock-market gains for executives and their investors.
The expansion is being done through the Optional Practical Training (OPT) Program, which sought to increase the number of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) students and workers involved in American industry. It was a boon for universities as it increased government money funding the programs. The Biden decision expands the program, adding 22 additional careers to the list of three-year visas.
The new Biden program also expands the J-1 visa program, often used by universities to recruit (import) low-wage lab workers, researchers, and teacher’s assistants. The O-1 “genius visa” standards are also being lowered to allow more foreign graduates to enter the U.S. job market. The administration promotes the changes as an example of “cultural exchange.”
Of course, the issue is also wrapped up within the tentacles of typical partisanship. Rob Law, the director of regulatory affairs and policy at the Center for Immigration Studies, spoke with “Breitbart” about the problematic partisan reactions to the problems for American workers.
A handful of Republicans get it and are willing to vocalize what’s going on here. . . . But too many elected Republicans are still beholden to the donor class and care more about the campaign dollars than their constituents. Democrats don’t look at the immigration issue from the perspective of America or any individual American. They only look at it from the perspective of the alien. . . . There’s no view about the American national interest, the impact on wages, on housing, or anything else in American society.
There is another aspect of the influx of foreign workers that is going to hinder any fight in which workers hope to engage. The foreign workers will serve as de facto scabs in any attempt to unionize an industry or fight for better working conditions. How can hundreds take to the picket lines when the easiest answer provided to a multinational corporation or industry, provided them by the Biden administration, is simply to trade the contentious American worker for the foreign worker with fewer expectations and lower workplace standards?
The American worker has seen an uptick in activity in the last few months. People are refusing to work for less than a living wage and they are refusing to work for corporations who treat the laborer poorly in favor of the well-compensated executive, or, as author Donald Jeffries calls them, “Vice-Presidents in Charge of Looking Out the Window.” Workers have taken to the streets, truckers are organizing now in Canada and America, and corporations are being forced, for the first time in a generation, to look at their tedious workplace policies and their inexcusable support of income inequality. Biden’s actions seek to undercut every one of these advancements to preserve the pendulum swing that has been heavily tilted toward the corporation since IBM set a standard for the modern corporation in the 1950s.
You don’t have to be anti-immigration to see the insidious nature of the administration’s decision and the billionaire campaign financiers behind it.