In the battle over immigration reform, some believe we need to grant amnesty to “undocumented workers” because they do the jobs “Americans won’t do,” as George W. Bush once said. But there’s a new class of vacant jobs in U.S. manufacturing — call them “the jobs Americans can’t do.”
According to a story in the New York Times, many jobs, even in this recessive economy, go unfilled because employers can’t find applicants with the skills to perform them. Lest you think they’re searching for assembly-line workers with PhD’s, look at this excerpt from the Times piece:
All candidates at Ben Venue must pass a basic skills test showing they can read and understand math at a ninth-grade level. A significant portion of recent applicants failed, and the company has been disappointed by the quality of graduates from local training programs.
The company struggles to fill 100 positions.
As technology advances, humans who interact with it also must, but many don’t.
Why? Try my thesis on for size:
1) Job compartmentalization by powerful unions discouraged cross-training and skills development in exchange for “security.”
2) Teachers’ unions continue to produce high school “graduates” whose mental capabilities make them unworthy of the title.
In other words, the anti-competitive spirit of private- and public-sector unions conspires to dumb down its victims, making them into dependents — first of the union and then of the state, when the employer lets them go, or goes under. Even workers in non-union jobs and plants have felt the impact of career compartmentalization as unions have bullied employers to transform the logistics of the factory to suit their members’ alleged need for “security.”
In short, big union collectivism administers Novocaine to the brain, from the kindergarten classroom to the factory floor, thus slowing the economy.
But the depressing effect of unions goes beyond the school and workplace. Our elected officials show symptoms of cranial anesthesia as a result of the fact that big unions fund and run their political campaigns.
You can almost hear the dull hum of lethargic synapses in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s numbed skull as she says that extending unemployment benefits is “the best way to stimulate the economy.”
That’s right. Rep. Pelosi says the productive members of society should pay others to remain unemployed as a way to generate the juice that keeps our economy surging forward.
What else could she say?
Her campaign team — the public- and private-sector unions — have conspired to decimate the industries that were the driving force of U.S. prosperity. Union leaders and their favored politicians grow fat and mighty in the process.
Now that public sector unions have overtaken their private-sector counterparts in total membership, this same open conspiracy brings the mind-numbing power of collectivism to every corner of government.
Some conservatives believe that the Democrats want the United States to be a socialist nation.Whether that’s true, her government has already become so, employing multiplying legions of union-dependents who are unfit for any craft or trade other than “government work.”
So as the number of private-sector jobs that Americans can’t do swells, only one option remains for the people who have been doped and duped by collectivism: you can cash checks from the government — either for doing nothing at home, or for actively hampering economic growth by working for the government.
The solution: reintroduce liberty and its partner, uncertainty, into our schools, factories, and government.
Collectivism produces a numbing of the nerve endings, a somnolence of the synapses, a deadness of the soul. The only remedy is freedom.
Two hundred yards from where I sit is Dorney Park, an amusement company which charges customers $40 per day to repeatedly give them the sensation that they’re about to die. Of course, they don’t say it that way, but thousands of people daily flow through the Dorney turnstiles to experience uncertainty in all of its magnificent abandon. From my patio, I can hear the screams … of delight.
That’s right … the soul of man thrills to the threat of uncertainty.
Our work lives use to pulsate with that sensation. Will the crop survive? Will the twister take the barn? Will I kill the game, and thus eat another day? Will my store generate enough revenue this hour to cover expenses? Will this craft, that I see as a physical manifestation of the passion of my soul, so bewitch another that he will part with the bread of his honest toil in order to take possession of my art?
In negotiating away our freedom for security, we have done the sensible thing … and smothered the inner man. We have heard the sweet song of the union bosses who have wooed us from uncertainty to stasis. But life, she will not permit stasis. Change happens anyway. And now millions who cashed in their passion for a paycheck have long lost both.
Men are not machines. We make machines. We use machines to master our environment. And we must reject the schemes of those who would sap these fleeting days of their vitality. We must embrace the uncertainty, and live the freedom.