Photo by Rhododendrites via Wikimedia Commons, Article republished from The Free Cities
By: Chris Baugh
Long time no talk. My day job (which some people would probably allege doesn’t exist cuz I’m a freeloading liberal cashing those George Soros protester checks!)
has kept me busy. But my internal rage against the GOP for being
goddamned liars every second of every day has built to a breaking point
where I have to take time out of my — again, very real — busy day to
address some of the bullshit permeating the national discourse.
that we’ve already shut down the government once over DACA and the
status of the so-called DREAMers, and given that we’re barreling toward
another government shutdown over the exact same fucking thing
— it’s time to dispel with a bunch of bullshit that white people writ
large and the GOP writ small have been selling for years about
One of the biggest criticisms of Democrats is that we somehow
don’t talk about economics enough. This is odd given that the 2 biggest
economic boom cycles of the last 40ish years happened under Democrats,
given that the economic numbers Trump constantly crows about are the
result of Obama’s economic policies, etc etc. In a very real and
documented way, everything we
talk about comes back to economics. This might shock you, but preventing
trans people from getting the shit beat out of them makes them more productive at work.
Funding college education creates higher wage-earners, which is good
for the economy! I promise! Joe Kennedy literally delivered the SOTU
response from an auto shop in Fall River, one of the “forgotten” parts
of “Forgotten America” that was allegedly forgotten by us coastal
But what I really want to talk about is the economics of trade and the economics of immigration. Because most
of what the GOP is spewing on this front is reactionary, revanchist,
and utter and complete bullshit. And it really doesn’t take a PhD in
economics to figure this out (although Paul Krugman has one, so there’s
that). Trade and immigration policy is one place where the politics of
it are actually zero-sum, unlike the social bullshit that the GOP lives and dies on.
are demographic realities of American populations. We’re currently
dealing with the baby boomers aging out of the workforce and into
retirement. That creates a problem with pension funds (many of which are
federally guaranteed), social security (which the GOP continues to
de-fund out of spite), and other government programs. First off, I won’t
call these entitlements because everyone with a job pays social security taxes. Calling them entitlements is like me calling a meal I paid for an “entitlement.” Sure, I am entitled to get the thing for which I have paid money.
Anyway, unless we start just breeding more white babies (a suggestion
that the GOP is shockingly close to floating in actuality), we need young able-bodied workers to come here, take jobs, and contribute taxes.
You want a fucking economic argument for DREAMers? 92% of
them are either employed or in college (keep in mind in economic terms,
5% of the population is always entering/leaving the workforce, so 92%
is very close to full employment). Further, the DREAMers pay income taxes because they have actual jobs. Even further, we make them pay a fee for being DREAMers. They are pouring money hand over fist into federal coffers — more
money than a non-DREAMer American in the same situation. Whether you
like it or not, if old white Americans watching Fox News want to keep
the programs they rely on solvent, it’s gonna be young brown and black people who came here legally (TPS status) or illegally (DREAMers) paying for it.
sorry — I really am — that coal isn’t market competitive as an energy
source. I’m sorry that Trump promised you that your sweet 85k a year job
that didn’t require a college degree and came with a pension (a
pension, mind you, that Democrats
have fought to preserve, not Mr Fucking Wore A Coal Hat once) isn’t
coming back. You know who supported job re-training in Appalachia?
Obama. You know who gutted it? Trump.
We. Need. Immigrants.
We need young able-bodied people to come here and work. And by the way, they’re not taking your fucking jobs. Unemployment is at its lowest level in 40 years. We’re now above
full employment in economic terms. If you think immigrants are taking
your jobs, maybe it’s because you don’t want to work in the service
industry (where a lot of the new jobs are being created). But I live in overrun-by-immigrants Communist-hellscape Los Angeles, and there are so many fucking “Now Hiring” signs in so many fucking windows.
Sure, those jobs might not be as sexy as coal mining or auto
manufacturing (although California has Tesla headquartered here). But if
you don’t want those jobs at those wages, it’s not the employer’s fault
(okay, there’s a longer minimum wage argument to be had, but guess who
supports higher minimum wage? Democrats!).
don’t support open borders. I think there’s a longer-term argument to
be made for them (we only have 2 borders! Creating a trade zone like the
EU in North America would be pretty fucking easy!). But I’m also a
(((globalist))). In the interim, we as a nation have to deal with the
very real demographic realities of Traditional Americans (TM) having
fewer babies, getting older, retiring, and creating a problem in terms
of taxation, in terms of spending, and in terms of what jobs exist and
for whom they exist.
And those realities terrify the White Nationalist
part of our country. But guess what? A bunch of brown kids in Arizona
are still Americans. Just because one day your grandson (or son the way
we’re moving) will be the low-skill worker on a dock whose
college-graduate supervisor is the son of undocumented workers? That’s
on you, not them. We as a nation strive to give everyone the same
opportunities to succeed. We’ve spent the past 250 years giving white
people (and white men specifically) a staggering advantage. Watching
that advantage slip away is going to be tough. Living in a world where
your kid doesn’t start out fifty steps ahead in a 100-step race is gonna
suck for you.
locking down the border, rounding up DREAMers in ICE raids, deporting
pillars of the community for some misdemeanor infraction 20 years
ago…these aren’t solutions.
These are symbolic moves by a racial group
that’s rapidly losing its grip on the power structures of America. I promise
you, white people, that if your kid is still smart and raised in a
middle class family, they will still have every opportunity to be
successful. But so will the Latinx kid next door.
need to stop pretending that we can rebuild 1950s America. It doesn’t
work. And we need to stop acting as though there’s some inherent value
in whiteness. That we alone can tell the story of America. America was
founded as a set of ideals, not as an ethnicity, not even as a
geographical place. Admittedly, we’ve fallen short of that ideal over
and over and over. But we shouldn’t be punishing people seeking that
ideal, contributing to that ideal every day, trusting in that ideal. The
skin tone of our country should never have defined us. We’re locked in
an ideological battle now over whether it does or not.
can fight and claw and scrape to maintain White America’s prominence,
but it’s eroding quickly. And if we do fight and claw and scrape to
maintain it, ultimately we all suffer together to deny opportunities to
some. It’s not a zero-sum game. We can embrace the reality of a more
diverse nation or we can fight it and suffer the economic consequences.
But please understand that this fight is economic as much as it’s social.