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A profile in today’s WaPo of an Iowa sheriff’s views on immigration isn’t bad, but you’d think an editor would have asked the reporter about this contradiction:

Wages at slaughterhouses, when adjusted for inflation, have declined by more than 20 percent over the last 25 years to about $10 an hour, said Neil Harl, an economics professor at Iowa State University. The locals don’t want the jobs at those wages.

“Maybe we’re going soft, but we’re not doing the jobs we used to,” Krukow said. “We don’t want to get dirty.”

You think maybe, just maybe, part of the reason that “locals don’t want the jobs” is because wages have fallen 20 percent, rather than any softness or aversion to dirt? And do you think that maybe, just maybe, the meatpackers were able to get away with cutting wages 20 percent because immigrants were imported who were willing to work cheap?



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