Happy (Fairly Priced) Labor Day!

We were going to do a Labor Day piece on the history of immigration and
labor, starting with Thomas Jefferson`s plan
to avoid
importing manufacturing workers, by using Great
Britain and Europe as maquiladoras:

While we have land to labor then, let us never wish
to see our citizens occupied at a work-bench, or
twirling a distaff. Carpenters, masons, smiths, are
wanting in husbandry: but, for the general operations
of manufacture, let our workshops remain in Europe. It
is better to carry provisions and materials to workmen
there, than bring them to the provisions and materials, and with them their manners
and principles
. The loss by the transportation of
commodities across the Atlantic will be made up in
and permanence of government.

Going on to the Molly Maguires in the Pennsylvania coalfields, (a cross
between the UMW and the IRA), continuing with Booker
T. Washington`s plea that employers not use imported
labor to replace his people, who were desperate for
better employment:

To those of
the white race who look to the incoming of those of
foreign birth and strange tongue and habits for the
prosperity of the South, were I permitted I would
repeat what I say to my own race, “Cast down your
bucket where you are.”

Atlanta Exposition Address

A. Phillip Randolph, who organized the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car
Porters`, was of the same

We could point out that IWW organizer Joe Hill, who murdered
an American storekeeper and was executed for it, was a
Swedish immigrant. (We frequently get asked if we
wouldn`t be less annoyed at mass immigration if it
was white immigration; the answer is “Not if
they`re like Joe Hill.”)

Then there were the murderers of Frederick Parmenter and Alessandro
Berardelli. Never heard those names? You`ve heard of
the men who killed
Eugene Debs called them “two of the bravest and
best scouts that ever served the labor movement.”

Those murderers were immigrant labor organizers, too.

But the Center for Immigration Studies has gotten in ahead of us, and
produced a piece of real scholarship which may do more
good than our usual flying leap at liberal icons. (See

Professor Vernon
M. Briggs, Jr
. has written a piece on “American
Unionism and U.S. Immigration Policy ” which should
be read by everyone interested in the struggle between
immigrant labor and the American working man.

Here it is, and don`t we wish President Bush could read it before he
goes to Detroit
and Wisconsin
to suck up to organized labor.

Unionism and U.S. Immigration Policy"

(Center For Immigration Studies)

But before we go off to well deserved rest (at double-time and a half),
we`ll leave you with our new VDARE Labor &
Immigration Archive,  all
the pieces we`ve done to date on the effects of
immigration on labor and vice versa.

Labor & Immigration Archive

September 02, 2001