Cheap Labor

Is the myth of cheap labor just transferring the costs to the public at large? Is it a case of pay me now or pay me later? That is, if we paid more for the goods and services that are produced with "cheap labor" now, could we avoid much of the socialized spending later?

Dick Lamm has a good article on this here. He articulately and thoughtfully examines some of the cost multipliers of "cheap" illegal labor. Its an oldie but a goodie.
Defenders of illegal immigrants call any and all concern about this issue “racist,” and attempt to take the issue completely off the table.
To continue to tolerate this practice is not only a legal issue; it is morally unfair to those waiting to come legally.
But that is not to say it is “cheap labor”. It may be “cheap” to those who pay the wages, but for the rest of us it is clearly “subsidized” labor, as we taxpayers pick up the costs of education, health, and other municipal costs imposed by this workforce.
The very people that liberals profess to speak for and care about pay the price in lost and suppressed wages while employers get the benefits of reduced wages.
The health care cost of this illegal workforce is also significant and also subsidized by U.S. taxpayers.
I have been fighting all my life for universal health care, but we can't have “the best health care system in the world” combined with Swiss cheese borders.
Ironically, the price of compassion is restriction.
By tolerating illegal immigration are we laying the foundations for a new Hispanic underclass?
You may have seen emails circulating around the internet that tick off the hidden costs to cheap labor. Some of the hidden costs to cheap labor include:

  • Earned Income Credit
  • Section 8 housing
  • Food Stamps
  • School breakfast and lunch
  • Bilingual education
  • Energy bill assistance
  • Emergency room healthcare
  • No car/life/homeowner's insurance
  • SSI
  • Medicare/Medicaid

Instead of paying for these items at the point of purchase in the form of higher prices for goods and services, these costs are paid through higher taxation. The costs will eventually be paid. But instead of paying them directly through the private transaction in a free market, they will be paid through a governmental income transfer.

If redistribution through taxation is the model one desires, then the status quo is an excellent way to achieve it.

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