As Tom Nassif, president of the Western Growers Association, explains why:
"There are just some jobs people don't want to do," Nassif said. "It's the most developed nation in the world using a foreign workforce, and people need to recognize that. We need to make them legal."As Kevin Drum puts it,
Jack Vessey [who runs a vegetable farm near El Centro] said he listed openings for 300 laborers at the state office of employment last week to prepare the lettuce fields for harvest. "We got one person," he said. "He showed up and said, 'I'm not going to do that.'"
What we need isn't a bunch of yahoos dotting the border with their lawn chairs and cell phones. Instead, we need to recognize that — like it or not — Americans very clearly want and rely on immigrant labor. The key, then, is not to eliminate it, but to figure out a rational way of limiting illegal immigration without simultaneously demonizing immigrants themselves. This might include programs that make it harder to cross the border illegally, but only if we also provide legal status to many more immigrants than we do now.
This combination — easier legal immigration paired with tougher illegal immigration — would provide immigrants with a greater incentive to try the legal route instead of the all-too-deadly "season of death" route. It would also provide us with the pool of immigrant labor we obviously want, increase immigrant wages, and cut down on the abuse they suffer from employers who know how easily they can be blackmailed.
Way to go Bush/Cheney! Thanks!
"The work provides more evidence that human activity since the Industrial Revolution has significantly altered the planet's climate system, scientists said. "This is saying, 'Yeah, we had it right.' We can pound on the table harder and say, 'This is real,' " said Richard Alley, a Penn State University geophysicist and expert on ice cores who was not involved with the analysis."