The Corner

Re: J.a.W.D.

Actually, the premise that cheap labor helps American employers stay competitive is not correct. As both Florida citrus growers and Fresno raisin farmers have learned to their chagrin, reliance on cheap labor has actually harmed their standing with regard to competitors in the Third world. This is because our producers were trying to compete based on the Third World’s comparative advantage (cheap labor) rather than on our competitive advantage (capital and technology). Now they’re trying to catch up by mechanizing the harvest of their crops, but they’re playing catch up — precisely because lax immigration policy allowed them to blithely continue using old-fashioned, stoop-labor methods.

Mark Krikorian, a nationally recognized expert on immigration issues, has served as Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) since 1995.

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