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Dear Center for American Progress: do you support getting jobs for Fresno's homeless?

An open letter to the Center for American Progress:

Your Matt Yglesias drew my attention (link) to the New York Times article "Cities Deal With a Surge in Shantytowns" (link) about a rise in homeless people living under bridges in Fresno, California. I have an effective way to ease their plight and I'd appreciate it if you'd let me know whether you'll help promote the idea.

In my plan, Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) would conduct sweeps for illegal aliens working in the fields that surround Fresno. California's Central Valley has been called the "fruit basket of the world", and there are no doubt thousands of foreign citizens working illegally in the fields not too distant from that city. Immediately after a sweep is performed, those U.S. citizens and legal workers who are currently living under bridges would be brought in to take the jobs of those illegal aliens. Many growers have some form of dormitory housing, and for those who don't trailers of some kind could be quickly put in place. And, those legal workers would be much less likely to be abused by their employers, whether that involves long hours, dangerous working conditions (including exposure to pesticides), dangerous living conditions, and so on. There would also be some form of a jobs board (such as provided by the local unemployment office), so that when non-farm employment opens up the legal workers can apply for it.

Note also that the illegal aliens would be deported to their home countries, meaning that they'd be taken out of the job market and wouldn't remain in the U.S. and obtain benefits. And, there'd be no loss of economic activity: the former homeless would spend the same or more than the current illegal aliens; in fact, they'd be able to spend more since they wouldn't be sending a portion of their money out of the country. So, considering that legal workers could command a slightly higher wage, it would have a net economic benefit. And, by deporting those illegal aliens to their home countries, we'd encourage proper public policy where a country cares for its own people rather than sending them to another country.

The plan outlined above could be very quickly put into place; it's a plan supportive of American workers and it encourages proper public policy. The alternative is to allow U.S. citizens to be homeless under bridges while foreign citizens who are here illegally take the jobs they could be doing.

Accordingly, I'm sure you'll stand with me to support this pro-American plan. Please let me know your thoughts.

2/28/11 UPDATE: I should have added in the post that what I describe would be voluntary. I realize some people are homeless by choice or because they're mentally ill, but others are not like that and would be willing to work if given the opportunity. My plan is just for those in the latter group.

Thu, 03/26/2009 - 14:16 · Importance: 4

Thu, 03/26/2009 - 23:45
Greg

I am sure the farmers would love the idea of clearing out their cheap supply of hard-working laborers only to have them replaced with the more expensive "41 year old crack addicts" mentioned in that article! Then, when they have to raise the prices of all their goods and customers complain, they'll simply explain that the gov't insisted that they replace all their cheap workers with homeless people and pay them more and that struggling families should pay not only for those higher foods, but also for all the ICE personnel, lawyers, judges, detention centers, security guards, and gov't workers needed to implement the policy. Farmers get crappy workers, customers and taxpayers pay more, politicians lose donation from pissed off agri-business...its win win! The truth is America LOVES cheap crap. Whether its cheap meat from plants that abuse illegals or great deals at Wal*Mart for crap made in Chinese sweatshops. This is especially true during a recession. Not to mention the fact that illegals using fake SSN's pay into a system that will never pay back out to them. You think the Gov't wants to put a stop to that? Its free money. Not to mention that Dems aren't big on the xenophobic illegals obsession and the GOP is much too in bed with big business to ever deprive them of their cheap labor (all under the guise of 'keeping the gov't out of the free market'. Plus it would undoubtedly cause a HUGE shitstorm of protests from the legal farm workers who feel they are being unduly harassed (I'd be pretty pissed if ICE officers continually showed up at my work demanding to see proof that I was American). This is just a very short list of reasons why this would never happen, much less never even be seriously considered. Writing this proposal was a complete waste of time (and no doubt, so was me writing this comment as I am sure you are quite certain that of the brilliance of this naive plan).

Fri, 03/27/2009 - 13:47
Mary

Your comment about illegals paying into a system that never pays back to them is false. What other country would give them free rein to commit crimes and then be placed back into society time and time again? Americans pay for excise taxes,insurance and are by law made to keep their vehicles safe. Not so for illegals who drive around carelessly and are not even stopped by police in sanctuary cities. How stupid is that?!Not to mention coming from a culture that prides itself on their ability to drink ,drive and knock down innocent victims. What other country would give them free health care while American citizens pay thru the nose or go begging for it? How many get food stamps ,WIC and other freebies that are denied to struggling Americans. Let's not forget their dismantling of our culture with their Gang banging, parenthood without responsibility,defiantly refusing to learn the language while they suck off the people who keep this country running. Bottom line ....*******( expletive for your ignorant avoidance of the facts) Sick and tired of you ignorant Jackasses who watch the detrioration of the country from your couch and say "so what." Liberals are worth about as much as they contribute.....translation,.. ZIP!

Fri, 03/27/2009 - 14:35
Fred Dawes
www.myspace.com/freddawes1776

Mary is right.

Sun, 03/29/2009 - 21:31
Linda in California

Mercy....too much common-sense in this article. It won't fly!

Mon, 03/30/2009 - 07:38
frankg

Some of the vehicle accidents here in utah that involve illegals they don't have any insurance. Kids get hit on their bikes. Half a family gets taken out by a drunk driver here illegal. Don't tell me I love cheap crap. My hours have been going down for months. Then I lost my job, my department and several others got terminated at the same time. Dozens of people at once. I believe there's republicans who have sold out to big business. As a conservative who's seen republicans campaign against conservative republicans, even switching support to democrats when conservatives win primary, I just want the law obeyed. Or we'll all be working for nothing.

Mon, 03/30/2009 - 18:54
Mary

Pelosi's Patriots Dear Nancy, 60% View Pelosi Unfavorably, Rasmussen Poll, March 27, 2009] Immigrant Decapitation Syndrome [James Fulford] @ 2:20 am [Email author] [Email this article] [Print this article] We’ve talked about “Immigrant Mass Murder Syndrome“ but this is a revolting new trend–a Haitian immigrant named Kerby Revelus killed two of his sisters, stabbing a 17-year old girl to death and decapitating a five year old. Cryptic talk, despair, then an afternoon of horror|Milton neighbors, family describe a troubled brother Milton police said Revelus stabbed two of his sisters to death and attacked a third in their family home late Saturday afternoon. The horrific nature of the crime, Milton Police Chief Richard G. Wells said, is likely to haunt investigators for years to come. After receiving a report of a domestic disturbance at the Revelus home, officers arrived at the house in less than a minute, Wells said. They kicked in an upstairs door, only to watch Revelus, armed with a kitchen knife, grab his 5-year-old sister, Bianca, and sever her head. Then he moved to the bedroom and turned the knife on 9-year-old Saraphina and began stabbing her. A third sister, 17-year-old Samantha, already had been stabbed to death in the same room. Wells said phone tapes recorded the arrival of police on the second floor and officers ordering Kerby Revelus to “Stop!” and “Get down!” Kerby Revelus didn’t listen. “It was like the officers weren’t even there,” he said. Police shot Kerby Revelus dead, Wells said, and one of the officers rushed Saraphina out of the house, bloody and crying for her mother, but alive. She was taken to Boston Medical Center with multiple stab wounds. Police said yesterday that she was recovering and with her parents. Police attempts to resuscitate Samantha were unsuccessful. 29 March 2009 Bloody Mass Murder Stems From Mass Immigration [James Fulford] @ 8:50 pm [Email author] [Email this article] [Print this article] This wouldn’t have happened in the US except for mass immigration: Editorial: Bloody mass murder stems from drug trade Saturday, March 21 Greensboro [NC] News-Record A mass murder in a small North Carolina town turned into a modern morality play as facts emerged this week. Authorities have determined that drug trafficking was behind the slaughter of four members of a Conover family March 12. The tragedy shows that delving into a dirty, illegal business can have unintended, deadly consequences. While Brian Tzeo has not been charged with any crime, the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office says he admitted his role in a drug-smuggling ring, receiving opium mailed from Thailand. Tzeo wasn’t home when authorities say an associate, Chiew Chan Saevang, went to his house to steal opium and killed Tzeo’s wife and three children. Events took another bizarre turn Wednesday. Saevang and his girlfriend, Yer Yang, also an alleged member of the drug ring, crashed their car in

Tue, 03/31/2009 - 21:02

Dear 24Ahead.com, It has been brought to my attention that many of your people have appropriated out land by force and by breach of treaty, and as such are illegal occupants in our land. As I result I kindly request that these intruders be hastily shipped back to their native lands in Europe so that our people can once again return to our proper and rightly ownership of our sacred land and so that foreign invaders will no longer steal the wealth and resources and usurp the livelihood of hard-working Native Americans. Kind regards, Sitting Bull

Tue, 03/31/2009 - 21:03

If you send back all the illegal immigrants, who will you get to landscape your mobile home?

Wed, 04/01/2009 - 13:48
Mary

Dear Sitting Bull,and Anonymous If you haven't noticed.....many years ago a country was formed here and built by Americans. We are sorry if you feel cheated out of your lands. But heck I'll trade you land for just one of your top notch Casinos!!! PS ...I'll landscape my own lawn thank you.....or at the very least give a local teen a summer job so he can work for his college education and learn and develop a strong work ethic. Small price to pay to avoid the mayhem that Mexican gang bangers and corrupt politicians are doing to the country.

Sat, 05/16/2009 - 08:43
earnest dodge

You realize that if we don't have illegals do it, we have to pay Americans minimum wage, right? Thats gonna be way more expensive and drive up the cost of food.

Mon, 12/21/2009 - 00:01
A Neighborhood Friend

You have your Ideas all mixed up... Okay lets put a theory to work on your mind. Say, all the illegal immigrants get deported to their home countries, there will be none of them left...that is what you want right? Who will go out in the fields and work under 115 degrees in the summer, YOU ? I DONT THINK SO. Lets say, your kids are gone off to college, would you do your own landscaping, how about foster farms or construction work? ... How about you stop being stupid, and wake up to reality. We do need them, we need the people to do that jobs none of us will do... Think about that one...what if your child fails to go to college...what awaits him? The fields...? right.........