According to the online Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the term Lockout is defined as: the withholding of employment by an employer and the whole or partial closing of the business establishment in order to gain concessions from or resist demands of employees
Today, many American workers are being locked out of their jobs. The companies that fire them or refuse to hire them are not doing without workers; these companies take these actions because they have a readily available source of workers, workers who can be imported from overseas!
It has almost become cliché that workers, especially in “High Tech” industries are forced to train their replacements who arrive in the United States from their home countries willing to work for substandard wages.
Minimum wage laws have been enacted to protect workers at the bottom rung of the economic ladder. Other laws have also been enacted to prevent discrimination in the workplace and to provide for a safe work environment.
When I was an INS Special Agent and participated in investigations of factories and other such places of employment, it was not uncommon to find illegal aliens being paid wages that were “off the books” and often below the minimum wage. Exploitation of such workers was rampant. In theory, enforcement of the immigration laws is supposed to prevent illegal aliens from working in our country and punish employers who intentionally hire illegal aliens. The reason I use the phrase, “in theory” is because there are so few ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) personnel to enforce our immigration laws that the odds of an unscrupulous employer hiring illegal aliens and getting away with it are quite good. Under the policies of the current administration to not arrest illegal aliens unless they have been convicted of serious crimes has created a de facto amnesty for millions of illegal aliens who now understand that no matter what the law says, ICE will not seek to arrest them or remove them from the United States.
In fact, often when ICE does conduct an investigation of an employer who is believed to be intentionally hiring illegal aliens, the employer may face fines or even prosecution but the illegal aliens are generally not taken into custody. Such field investigations have been given the term “Silent Raid” by the administration!
This tactic of “silent raids” does nothing to deter or discourage millions of illegal aliens from entering our country in violation of law and working illegally because the administration is actually seeking to “solve” the problem of illegal aliens being present in the United States by providing them with employment authorization!
For years we have been told by the politicians from both sides of the aisle that illegal aliens do the work Americans won't do. Yet before the implementation of the insane policy of conducting “silent raids” whenever significant numbers of illegal aliens were arrested at their jobs, the next day long lines of unemployed Americans would show up seeking those very same jobs! Of course this will no longer be happening because the “raids” are now being conducted silently!
The President and members of both the House of Representatives and the United States Senate have repeated called for placing unknown millions of illegal aliens on a pathway to United States citizenship and recently the administration has begun the process of providing hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens who had been under deportation (removal) proceedings with employment authorization even though they are illegal aliens!
When an illegal alien is employed a citizen or lawful immigrant is displaced. Employers who intentionally hire illegal aliens do so to pay lower wages and often ignore health and safety regulations as well.
Generally people think of illegal aliens working at the bottom-rung of the economic ladder when the issue of the hiring of foreign workers is raised. It is understood that generally illegal aliens will accept substandard wages and working conditions, although the open borders advocates will make the assertion that illegal aliens do the work Americans won't do more and more people are finally seeing through that oft quoted falsehood.
There is another group of foreign workers who will work for wages that are well below the prevailing wages for a particular industry. These aliens are not working on factories or farms and did not run our nation's borders. In fact, these are not illegal aliens but aliens who have been able to game the visa process in order to work in the United States in the so-called 'High Tech” industries. Traditionally, these jobs were taken by middle class workers who had graduated from college, often with graduate degrees. Today, however, increasing numbers of those jobs are now being taken by foreign workers who are willing to work for substandard wages with far fewer fringe benefits.
Most Americans are familiar with how the political leaders of Mexico protest loudly when the United States does anything to enforce it immigration laws or secure its borders. What many Americans probably don't know is how the leaders of India and other countries that send us their computer programmers and other highly educated professionals demand that their citizens be employed in the United States and even protest loudly at the cost for filing applications for visas that enable their citizens to work in the United States!
In July 2010, the Washington Post published a news report entitled, “Indian government calls H1B visa fee hike 'discriminatory'”
Here is an excerpt from that report:
The legislation targets companies that lawmakers say "exploit" U.S. visa programs. A summary of the Senate version listed Wipro, Tata, Infosys and Satyam as such firms, saying that they fly thousands of employees to the U.S. to work at as technicians and engineers for their clients.
What is impossible to understand is how the government of the United States reacts to the exploitation of the visa system that is supposed to protect American workers, by raising the fees for those visas, while not preventing the exploitation in the first place!
It is incredible that the issue of immigration has become identified with political conservatives and that the issue of the impact of huge numbers of workers across the board has caused Americans to lose their jobs or at the very least, have had to settle for far lower wages- an issue that, in the days of President Harry S. Truman or John F. Kennedy would have been a source of great concern for the old Democratic Party.
The “new” Democratic Party has clearly lost its way and has forgotten from whence they derived their support and power in the first place!
The point is that the traditional concerns of both political parties are now being ignored by the majority of those who were elected to represent the citizens of this nation.
Political leaders from both the Democratic and Republican parties all know that American workers are being locked out of their professions because of widespread visa fraud- yet virtually nothing is done about it!
Make no mistake, visa fraud is a crime! Janet Napolitano, the Secretary of the DHS, the agency I have come to refer to as the “Department of Homeland Surrender” has stated, incorrectly, that running our nation's borders is not a crime. Lying on an application for a visa is a crime- a felony. In fact several different statutes address such false statements on visa applications. Yet it is a crime that is only occasionally prosecuted and when that crime is prosecuted generally the only people who are arrested and charged are the law firms or others who file the applications while the aliens who enter the United States often go unpunished and are, in fact, likely to not even be removed (deported) from the United States even though every alien who is assisted by those crooked firms is a co-conspirator!
Across the economic spectrum and across our nation, Americans are losing their jobs to aliens who are enticed and encouraged to do the jobs Americans used to do before they were locked out of their jobs and their thin slices of the American Dream!