I recently spent a good chunk of time unemployed. I’d been canned from my second straight newspaper job, positions that’d likely been doomed from the beginning. I didn’t think newspapers were for me any longer; I no longer enjoyed doing the thing I’d spent my life planning to spend my life doing.
Never good at math, or sales, or many things other than writing, reporting, Quark and Photoshop, I had counted on a construction job helping me feed my family as I figured out where to go next. I’m no carpenter or strongman, but I’m not afraid of sweat or sore muscles.
But guess what? Nobody “hires” general laborers anymore, the pick them up at Home Depot after their lumber’s all loaded. So Ace’s little tangent on immigration caught my attention.
It really seems rather un-American to decide that lower-class workers are just too damn greedy and too darn well-paid and that jobs that in the past would go to them will instead go to foreign-born illegal migrants. Outsourcing put a lot of formerly American jobs in foreign countries. Now even the jobs that must be done here and cant be outsourced are being filled by foreign workers anyway through connived nonenforcement of our laws — insourcing, if you will.
That’s what I’ve been screaming, I said. I managed to find a soft landing before crawling back to a newspaper, tail between my legs.
I recertified as a lifeguard and took a college job fishing spoiled preteens out of the country club pool (a different kind of wetback job, I guess). But it was pretty bleak there for a while.
I would’ve toted all the lumber I could find if it’d made life easier for my wife and family.