petej + mexico   101

Monthly Review | Marx on Immigration
Marx did not elaborate on his reasons for writing that Irish immigration reduced English workers’ wages. He implied that the cause was an oversupply of manual laborers, but his other statements indicate that he considered English xenophobia and the resulting antagonism among workers an even greater problem. The important point, however, is that he was not blaming lower wages on the immigrants themselves; for him the culprits were the colonial system that drove Irish workers to England, and the exploitation of these workers once they arrived.

The same considerations apply in the United States today. The main difference is the addition of legal status as a factor in setting wage levels—the laws that now make work “illegal” for millions of immigrant workers. Immigrant rights advocates may feel it is expedient to cite academic economists like Peri who downplay or deny the downward pressure exerted on wages by the exploitation of undocumented workers. It is not. As Columbia University economist Moshe Adler has noted, this approach does nothing to convince the many U.S. citizens who work in occupations with large numbers of undocumented immigrants and therefore “know firsthand that [exploitation of immigrant workers] puts direct downward pressure on their own wages.”16 Far from helping the movement, citing Peri only adds to these workers’ distrust and resentment toward middle-class immigrant rights advocates.17 More importantly, this approach distracts attention from efforts to address the real issues: the root causes of immigration in U.S. foreign policy, the super-exploitation of immigrant workers, and the common interests of immigrant and native-born workers.

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In his 1870 letter, Marx described what he then considered the overriding priority for labor organizing in England: “to make the English workers realize that for them the national emancipation of Ireland is not a question of abstract justice or humanitarian sentiment but the first condition of their own social emancipation.” His closing words of advice to Meyer and Vogt were similar: “You have wide field in America for work along the same lines. A coalition of the German workers with the Irish workers (and of course also with the English and American workers who are prepared to accede to it) is the greatest achievement you could bring about now.” This internationalist and class-based perspective has lost none of its good sense in the century and a half since it was written.
Marx  immigration  Ireland  England  USA  Mexico  CentralAmerica  migration  pay  wages  competition  supply  demand  language  skills  racism  discrimination  legal  deportation  workingClass  xenophobia  employers  sanctions  tradeUnions  internationalism  rights 
november 2018 by petej
Trump’s Asylum Proclamation and the False Distinction Between “Migrant” and “Refugee” | The New Yorker
This story of undeservedness rests on the distinction between refugees and migrants; the latter word has come into particularly wide usage since the so-called caravan became a feature of Trump’s campaigning in advance of the midterm elections. The people coming to the border from Latin America are fleeing gang violence and extreme poverty. Under existing U.S. asylum rules, neither circumstance would entitle them to asylum protection, though the Obama Administration recognized the fear of gang violence as grounds for asylum. But the distinction between the two words is a legal fiction: it asserts that economic hardship is somehow separate from political disenfranchisement and political persecution. Implicit in this claim is the view that economic inequality across nations is somehow natural, and therefore the citizens of wealthier nations have no responsibility to shelter those who are fleeing poverty elsewhere. The distinction between political and economic migrants is relatively new, dating to the second half of the twentieth century. But now that climate change is displacing tens of millions of people, its immorality comes into ever greater relief.
USA  immigration  asylum  refugees  migrants  Mexico  borders  dctagged  dc:creator=GessenMasha 
november 2018 by petej
Terrifying Trump | by Elizabeth Drew | The New York Review of Books
In fact, Trump’s hold on power may be more tenuous than it appears. It’s not just that his hubristic dismissal of valid ethical concerns could produce a scandal at any time; he took office under the cloud of at least one investigation into possible underhanded if not illegal dealings with Russia on his part and continuing questions about the relations of some of his political associates with Putin or his associates. The ambiguity of Trump’s election victory complicates his presidency: having lost the popular vote by nearly three million, he started out as a minority president with a large mass of people feeling they’d been cheated and motivated to arise against him. This partly explains Trump’s fixation on the electoral vote and his and his associates’ insistence—incorrect—that he’d won an electoral vote “landslide.”

Trump’s possible mental deficiencies are also a troubling question: serious medical professionals suspect he has narcissistic personality disorder, and also oncoming dementia, judging from his limited vocabulary. (If one compares his earlier appearances on YouTube, for example a 1988 interview with Larry King, it appears that Trump used to speak more fluently and coherently than he does now, especially in some of his recent rambling presentations.) His perseverating about such matters as the size of his inauguration crowd, or the fantasy that three to five million illegal voters denied him a popular vote victory (he got these estimates from a dodgy source who has yet to offer documentation), or, as he told CIA employees, the number of times he’s been on the cover of Time (sometimes inflating the actual number) has become a joke, but it also suggests that there may be something troubling about his mental state. Numerous eminent psychologists and psychiatrists have written about or expressed their concerns about Trump’s mental stability.
TrumpDonald  USA  politics  PenceMike  SessionsJeff  BannonStephen  MillerStephen  tax  deregulation  business  environment  Obamacare  Mexico  immigration  refugees  travel  ban  Muslims  foreignPolicy  Iran  media  journalism  YatesSally  judiciary  authoritarianism  mentalHealth  power 
february 2017 by petej
Eliot A. Cohen Responds to Donald Trump's First Week - The Atlantic
We were right. And friends who urged us to tone it down, to make our peace with him, to stop saying as loudly as we could “this is abnormal,” to accommodate him, to show loyalty to the Republican Party, to think that he and his advisers could be tamed, were wrong. In an epic week beginning with a dark and divisive inaugural speech, extraordinary attacks on a free press, a visit to the CIA that dishonored a monument to anonymous heroes who paid the ultimate price, and now an attempt to ban selected groups of Muslims (including interpreters who served with our forces in Iraq and those with green cards, though not those from countries with Trump hotels, or from really indispensable states like Saudi Arabia), he has lived down to expectations.

Precisely because the problem is one of temperament and character, it will not get better. It will get worse, as power intoxicates Trump and those around him. It will probably end in calamity—substantial domestic protest and violence, a breakdown of international economic relationships, the collapse of major alliances, or perhaps one or more new wars (even with China) on top of the ones we already have. It will not be surprising in the slightest if his term ends not in four or in eight years, but sooner, with impeachment or removal under the 25th Amendment. The sooner Americans get used to these likelihoods, the better.
TrumpDonald  USA  politics  Mexico  immigration  travel  ban  Muslims  refugees  authoritarianism  nationalism  ignorance  temperament 
january 2017 by petej
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