CASE TURN – visas
a. History proves programs like the aff are worse for native
and guest workers, make them explain how they avoid
these issues or you vote neg
Phillips 14
Phillips , Teaghan Rene (201 4) D own the Rabbit H ole: on t he bor der of madness
Between 1917 1942), over fifty thousand Mexican farm workers entered America under
a Department of Labor Bracero Program
fueling an instrumentalist
view of Mexican migrants as a pure source of labor. At the time, Mexican migrants, evaded
numerical quotas and had unrestricted immigration.
The racial hierarchy of the eugenics
movement saw a reinforcement of racial ideologies, anxiety, and xenophobia related to
When jobs grew scarce, migrants, due to their vulnerability as
Others, were blamed for the difficulty of finding employment and used as scapegoats for
structural, economic problems.
Migrant Labor and the Economy of Othering
and 1921 (and agai n in
. The Bracero Pr ogram was sti mulated largely by wartime ne eds, e stablishi ng a legal model and cultural mi ndse t that endured for ma ny de cades. Patterns of racial suprema cy, establis hed before the drawing of the Border, continue d to fee d subseq uent stere otypes about Me xicans,
unlike other migrants,
73 The 1920s Quota Laws create d a large, new category of pe ople known as “illegal aliens.”74 Althoug h Mexi cans were not calle d “illegals ” at the same ti me as other groups wer e, be cause they had no quota restrictions , they would later be i ncluded and crimi nalized by the same language. I n addition to the Quota Laws a nd de fact o exclusi on, the deportation sy stem used agai nst migrants of ot her origins evolve d into a legal fra mework use d to regulate the move ment of pe ople. T his fra mework woul d
eventually be applie d to Mexi can migrants as well. In re sponse to the Bracer o Progra m and the Quota Laws, the M exi can populat ion boomed in the borderla nds in t he 1920 s. Rather than mai ntaining distinct ethni c and cultural characteristi cs, however, the ethni c qualities of Me xica ns “beca me rei fied a nd naturalize d as immuta ble racial one s.” 7 5 To many Ameri cans in the early t wentieth century, all migra nts from s outh of the Border, eve n if they were citize ns of the U.S. or from other parts of Latin Ameri ca, were de signated as “Me xicans,” whi ch conflated race with nationality.
In this context, the 1 930 U nited States fe deral cen sus liste d Mexi cans a s a separate, non -white race for the first time, the Border Patrol was for me d, and the Great Depres sion fuel ed the ma ss de portation of Me xica ns whether they were U.S. citizen s or not.76
This proces s of s capegoating and dep ortation has re curre d time and time again, es pecially in res ponse to economi c rece ssions or as a strategy for pr eside ntial campaigns attempting to garner political support. Cli nton, Bush, a nd Obama alike have s upported i mmigration re for m while trying to increa se se curitization a nd Border Patrol e nforce ment. Foll owing 9/1 1, and in conjunction with the economic re cessi on, the Oba ma administration has de ported a total of appr oxi mately 2,000, 000 people from Ameri ca.77 Al though large numbers of Latino migrants had be en de ported previously in res ponse to public a nxiety and xe nophobia, t he curre nt dep ortation regime is unprece dente d. Thus, the treatme nt of Others de pen ds entirely on the
b. Employers don’t want Guest Workers— undocumented
immigrants are cheaper
Fitz 13
(Marshall, Direc tor of Immigrati on Polic y at Americ an Pr ogress, “Setti ng T he Rec ord Straight On F ar m Wor ker Pay” 5/8 pg onli ne at on/2013/04/08/1834451/setti ng -the-r ecor d-str aight-on-farm- wor ker- pay///sd)
Over the l ast few days , neg otiations over fi xi ng our broken agricul tur al labor mar ket have taken their turn at c enter stage i n the i mmigration r eform debate. As T hink Pr ogress has reported,
negotiations between growers and farm worker advocates to
establish a new visa for foreign agriculture workers are stalling, as the “growers
refuse to make concessions and are insisting on paying future farm workers less
.” Farmworkers are among the lowest paid workers in the country,
poverty rates of farmworkers is nearly double the national rate
in a new guest worker program,
foreign workers who
are dependent on their employers are unlikely to bargain for higher wages.
than they ar e ear ning now
aver aging onl y $15,000 to $17,000 per year and
for wag e and s al ar y empl oyees. Few rec ei ve fri nge benefits (like sic k leave) or employer-pr ovided health i nsur ance and many l ac k basic federal l abor protecti ons
array of oc cupational safety protec tions, and c ertai n c hild labor l aw protec tions. Si nc e workers don’t have a right to organiz e under federal law, they need another mec hanis m to prevent wage depressi on. T his is es peciall y true
incl udi ng enti tlement to overtime pay, the right to c ollec ti ve bargai ning, an
wher e empl oyers c an rej ect U .S. wor kers i f they are unwilling to acc ept the pr ogram’s mini mum wage r ate and where
But i n the i mmigration disc ussions , the growers, repr esented by the American F ar m Bur eau,
are seeking to replac e the existi ng mini mum wage for mul a with their own pr opos al for payi ng foreign labor ers. T he AFB i nsists that payi ng wor kers 10 or 20 percent above the federal mi nimum wage would guarantee a fair and competiti ve wage and argue that the c urrent calc ulation is artificiall y high. So what i s reall y goi ng on? H ere are the facts on far mwor ker pay and what’s at s take for some of the most vulnerable wor kers i n our ec onomy: 1. Empl oyers who us e the c urrent tempor ar y agricultur al wor ker program (H-2A) ar e req uired to pay the higher of the federal or s tate mi ni mum wages, the prevailing wage, or what is known as the Advers e Effect Wage Rate (AEWR) , to foreig n workers and U.S. wor kers in compar abl e empl oyment. T he AEWR is set by the U.S. Department of Labor based on a U.S. D epartment of Agricultur e s ur vey is the regi onal weighted aver age hourl y wage for fiel d and li vestoc k wor kers c ombi ned. Thi s formul a is i ntended to pr otect farm wor kers fr om wage depr ession. 2. But ther e are at least three reas ons to beli eve that
even the c urrent AEWR standard is too low. First, the AEWR is based on the previ ous year’s wage r ates and does not reflec t inflati on. Second, the wage s ur vey on whic h the AEWR is s et i ncludes the 55 perc ent or more of far mwor kers who ar e undoc umented. T hat means the s ur vey incl udes the wages of wor kers whos e ear nings are depress e d bec ause they lac k leg al status. We know that thos e wages would incr ease by up to 15 perc ent if they had leg al status. In other words, the s ur vey its elf is s kewed by i nc orporating in to it the depr ess ed wag es of large pr oporti ons of wor kers . T hird, the AEWR’s , by thems el ves , do not pr event growers from imposing ver y high producti vity standards . D esper ate and del everaged for eign wor kers will acc ept thos e produc ti vity demands but U.S. wor kers woul d i nsist on higher wages . So the AEWR refl ects wages of peopl e who ar e invol untaril y wor king more for less . 3. Although the current standard is alr eady too l ow, the growers are ac tuall y proposing to depart from that standard. They tried to eli minate that wage
protecti on vi a midnight regul ati ons in the waning days of the Bush pr esidenc y. The r egulations went i n to effec t for a s hor t ti me (during which farmwor kers s aw a drop in wag es of about $1 an hour) until the Obama Adminis trati on revers ed the Bush rul es. Now gr owers are tr yi ng to achi eve their effor t to l ower wages by c odifyi ng a new “far mwor ker mi ni mum wage” (as oppos ed to a mar ket wag e).
c. Extend our Brexit arguments, the aftermath will be unlike
anything we’ve seen in recent years
Bulman 17
Bulman, May. “Bre xit Vote Sees Highest Spike in Religious a nd Ra cial Hate Cri mes Ever Re cor ded. ” The Inde pendent, I nde pen dent Digital News and Media, 10 July 20 17, www.inde news/ uk/home -new s/racist -hate -cri mes -surge -to-re cor d-high-a fter-brexit -vote-new-figures -reveal-a 78295 ml.
Hate crimes involving racial and religious discrimination have soared at an
unprecedented rate since the Brexit vote
minority groups feel “more
vulnerable than ever”.
incidents surged by 23 per cent in the 11 months
after the EU referendum,
marking an unparallelled rise. Eleven police forces
saw reports of race and faith-based hate crimes increase by more than 40 per
The number increased
in every region
making the latest 22 per cent
figure an unprecedented annual rise.
incidents reported in the past
, T he Independent can r eveal, pr ompting warni ngs that
– from 40,741 to 49,921 –
Police figures obtai ned thr ough Freedom of Informati on (FOI) r equests s how
compared with the s ame period the previ ous year,
of the 32
and Wales that res ponded to the FOI req ues ts
with several regions i ncluding Gwent, N otti nghams hire and Kent s oaring by mor e than half i n a year. The r ec ord figures cons olidate previ ous indic ati ons that the Leave vote on 23 J une l ast year prompted a wave of hate crimes based on religion and ethnicity, and have l ead to calls for the Gover nment to “urgentl y” r evi ew its res pons e to suc h r eports . Gwent i n Wales saw the highest incr ease, with the number of inci dents rising by 77 per c ent, from 367 to 649. Reports of r aciall y and religiousl y aggravated hate cri mes als o r os e c onsider abl y i n Kent ( 66 per c ent, from 874 to 1,452), Warwic kshir e (65 per cent, 286 to 471) and Notti nghamshire (57 per cent, 681 t o 1,071).
exc ept the City of London, whic h is the s malles t territori al polic e force in England and Wales, both in terms of geographic ar ea and head count. Pr evious H ome Offic e figur es r eported that rac e and faith- based hate crimes had decr eas ed by 0.4 per cent i n 2011/12, befor e cli mbi ng by s even per c ent the followi ng year, 16 per cent i n 2014 and 17 per c ent i n 2015 —
It comes after previ ous figur es s howed that in the months followi ng the EU r eferendum, hate cri mes to r egional polic e forc es r ose c onsi der abl y.
in England
year have included a Muslim woman being dragged along the pavement by her
hijab, two Polish men being attacked in the street, killing one of them, and a
Muslim man and woman being squirted with acid,
leavi ng them with life-c hanging i njuries. When i nfor med of the new figur es, fai th groups and organis ations r epres enting foreig n nationaliti es tol d T he Independent they had notic ed a “signific ant” rise in r ac e and faith-bas ed hate cri mes to the extent that they had bec ome a UK- wide phenomenon, and urged the Gover nment to take “urgent” ac tion to r eview their appr oac h to such crimes.
d. WORKER INFLUX BAD – EU empirics prove.
Holbrook 16.
(Jon Hol brook, Hol brook is a barrister and regul ar c ontributor to s pi ked on a variety of leg al and politic al iss ues, “ WH Y NATION S N EED TO CONTR OL THEIR BORD ERS”, week.c om/eu-r eferendum-br exit-immigration-border-contr ol-510740, 10/17/16, Ac ces sed 6/26/18, Lex RM)
an influx of EU workers has many more negatives than positives. It can cause
resentment from those who experience wage compression, job losses, an
overheated housing market and overcrowded schools and hospitals
economy suffers when cheap labor becomes an easy substitute for productivity
. The exis tenc e of parallel and often transi ent c ommunities c an weaken c ommunity c ohesion. And
Although accepti ng free movement has al ways been a req uirement of EU membershi p, i t onl y bec ame an iss ue in rec ent years. In 2004, the bl oc expanded to i nclude eight centr al and eas ter n Eur opean countries —openi ng the U.K.’s bor ders to a large pool of wor kers . At the ti me, there was littl e debate about these new members j oini ng. T his meant that peopl e who favor ed the polic y did not have to wi n public s upport for it. Mor eover, i n the abs enc e of a need to wi n popular bac king, the advocates of fr ee movement often res orted to a s ubtle for m of abuse by dis mis sing people who obj ected to it as bac kward-l ooki ng and morall y s us pect.
a. AT – regulations solve – Regulatory guest worker
programs are impossible—employers and congress
make new restrictions unattainable
Bauer 13
et. al
(Mar y Bauer is the director of the Southern Pover ty Law Center; JD and Skadden F ellow @ U VA Law; Coll ege of William & Mar y // ‘Cl os e to Sl aver y: Guestwor ker Pr ograms in the Uni ted States’ http://www.s plc /downl oads /publicati on/SPLC-Clos e-to- Slaver y-2013.pdf) L Shen
neither set of regulations has gone into effect; employers
have filed multiple lawsuits challenging them, and Congress has effectively
blocked implementation of the new wage regulations. For workers, then, the
In the past s everal years, the D OL has pr opos ed two s ets of regul ati ons to better pr otect non- agricultural H- 2 wor kers – one rel ated to wag e rate guarantees and one more comprehensi ve s et of reg ulati ons. T hes e reg ulati ons also would better protec t the jobs and wag es of U .S. wor kers. Unfortunatel y for wor kers,
abuses continue unabated. It is virtually impossible to create a guestworker
program for low-wage workers that does not involve systemic abuse .
The H-2 guestwor ker pr ogram s houl d not be expanded i n the name of immigrati on refor m and should not be the model for the future flow of wor kers
b. Plan fails to help guest workers, its bad
Farm Worker Justice 11
(This report by F armwor ker Justice was researched and written by Etan Newman under the g uidance of Br uc e Goldstein and Adrienne D erVartani an, with assistanc e fr om Weeun Wang, Virgini a R uiz, and
Jessic a F eli x-Romero) “N o Way to Tr eat a Guest: Why the H2- A Agricultur al vis a fails U .S. and F oreign Wor kers”, http://far mwor kerjustic /doc uments /7.2.a.6 %20N o% 20Way% 20To%20Tr eat% 20A% 20Gues t% 20H- 2A%20R eport.pdf
. The (DOL),
frequently approves illegal job terms in the workers’ contracts.
Employees routinely experience wage theft and other unlawful practices. ➜
Many guest workers must pay recruiters for jobs and enter the U.S.
indebted, desperate to work, and fearful that the loss of their job will lead to
financial ruin. The recruitment system has led to numerous documented cases
of debt-peonage, human trafficking, and forced labor.
Guest wor ker programs dri ve down wages and wor king c ondi tions of U .S. wor kers and depri ve foreign wor kers of ec onomic bar gaini ng power and the opportuni ty to g ain political repr esentati on . ➜ T he H-2A program’s protec tions for U .S. wor kers and agai nst exploi tation of g ues t wor kers by empl oyers are modes t; i n fac t, th ey ar e sim ilar to tho se in the Bracero p rogr am (1942- 1964), which was ter minated due to its notorious labor abuses. ➜ Once an empl oyer deci des to enter the H- 2A program, the law creates i ncenti ves to pr efer g uest wor kers over U .S. wor kers. F or example, the empl oyer must pay Soci al Sec urity and unemployment taxes on U.S. wor kers’ wages but is exempt fr om payi ng thes e taxes on gues t wor kers’ wages. ➜ Vi olati ons of the rights of U.S. wor kers and guest wor kers by H- 2A program employers ar e r ampant and s ystemic
which has pri mar y r es ponsi bility for adminis teri ng the H- 2A pr ogram,
at H- 2A employers
wor kers ar e endemic . H-2A empl oyers and their r ecrui ting agents i n M exic o and other
U.S. D epartment of Labor
U.S. wor kers who appl y for H-2A j obs are r ejec ted or forc ed to quit.
Abuses in the recr uitment of foreign
poor c ountri es exploit the vul ner ability of foreign citizens .
➜ More than one- half of the far mwor kers on U .S. far ms and r anc hes l ac k authoriz ed i mmigrati on status. The presence of s o many undoc umented wor kers depri ves all far mwor kers of bargai ning power and politi cal i nfl uenc e. D eporti ng all or most undocumented farmwor kers woul d be cos tl y and i mpr actic al, i nflict har m on hundreds of
thous ands of har d- wor ki ng far mwor kers and their families , many of whom are Uni ted States citiz ens, and depri ve agriculture of the wor kfor ce it needs to produce our fr uits, veg etabl es and li vestoc k.
c. Legalization won’t solve for worker exploitation---other
factors contribute to low pay, including age, education, and
English skills
Skerry 01
(Peter, professor of politic al sci enc e at Clar emont M cKenna C ollege, “Why Amnesty Is the Wrong Way to Go,” Br ooki ngs, publis hed 8/12/01, acc ess ed 7/16/18, https ://brooki nions/why-amnesty-is-the- wr ong- way- to-go/ ) //Lex-C L
undocumented immigrants get paid less
than other workers. But the research also attributes this fact not to the immigrants’ legal status, but to
Amnesty is the c ompassi onate component in the adminis trati on’s c ons er vati ve pitc h to His panics . And even though the degree of compassion i n amnes ty is greatl y exaggerated and its politi cal benefit to Bus h s teadily s hrinki ng, the White H ouse will find i t all but i mpossibl e to abandon the i dea of amnesty now that i t has been put on the tabl e. Amnes ty may seem, on the s urface, to be a reasonabl e measur e, but what s pecific problems facing illeg als does i t redress? Res earch has shown that
their youth, their low education and skill levels, their limited English proficiency
and their short stints with specific employers. In fact, there is a considerable body
of research indicating that the well-being of immigrants is less a function of their
legal status than of the length of time they have been in the United States
. The problems that bes et undoc umented i mmigrants di minis h as they c ease to become tr ansients ( whether
moving around i n the U.S. or bac k and for th to Mexi co), settl e down i n mor e s table jobs and neighbor hoods, pic k up s kills and begin to familiarize thems el ves with English. And of course, the more time ill egals s pend her e, the more adept they bec ome at avoidi ng the INS. T his last poi nt is partic ularl y telling, bec aus e most of this r esearc h was done when there was muc h more intensi ve interi or enforcement by the INS than there is today, when the bul k of the ag enc y’ s efforts are c onc entrated at the border. With i nterior enforc ement virtuall y nil, it’s ironic that the iss ue of amn esty should surfac e now. And it makes the AF L-CIO’s pr opos ed Immigrants Fr eedom Ride— a r epl ay of the ci vil rights movement’s freedom rides, with busloads of ill egals fr om across the nati on c onverging on Was hing ton—look like an effort to pr ovoke the feder al government i nto actuall y enforcing i mmigrati on l aws i n the i nterior.
d. Past efforts to regulate abuses have all failed
Bauer et. al 13
(Mar y Bauer is the direc tor of the Southern Poverty Law Center; JD and Skadden F ellow @ U VA Law; C olleg e of William & M ar y // ‘Close to Sl aver y: Guestwor ker Pr ograms i n the U nited States’ http://www.s plc /downloads/publicatio n/SPLC-Clos e-to-Slaver y- 2013.pdf) LShen
Unfortunately, these efforts have either fallen short or been
defeated by employer challenges.
In theory, these measures
should prevent sham companies with no assets from obtaining h-2A workers
however, farmworker advocates report that labor contractors are part of
government enforcement circumventing these protections by supplying
fraudulent information to the DoL,
The DoL has attempted
to change this practice by proposing regulations that require job contractors to
establish their own temporary labor shortage and to file applications jointly with
their employer
These regulations have been blocked, however, by employerdriven legal challenges.
Recog nizing thes e problems, the DoL has attempted to better r egulate – though not prohi bit – the invol vement of job contr actors in the h- 2A and h- 2B pr ograms i n recent years.
In 2010, the D oL enacted new r egulations that requir e farm labor contr actors to lis t the empl oyers that will actuall y be usi ng the labor on their applic ati on for the temporar y l abor .69 T he regul ati ons als o r equire l abor contr actors that appl y for h-2A wor kers to pos t a bond.
and hiring out their labor . In prac tice,
8 • lac k
includi ng clai ms that they are growers or empl oyers , to avoid the bond r equirement. under the c urrent h- 2B regul ations , job contr actors may petition for h-2B wor kers by demons trati ng that the ulti mate employer, r ather than the c ontrac tor, is experienci ng a temporar y l abor s hortag e.
-clients as a pre-c ondition of appl ying for h-2B wor kers .
e. Slavery and human trafficking are extremely evil, don’t vote
for them if there’s an even 1% chance of the link
a. Open borders can double GDP- immigration is single
biggest factor in increasing growth
Swanson, SW, 16
(Ana Swans on covers the ec onomy, trade and the F eder al Reser ve. https ://www.washi ngtonpos t.c om/news/wonk/wp/2016/10/14/why- ec onomists-l ove- and- politici ans- detest-the-i dea-of-opening-the- bor ders-to-lots- mor e-immigrants/?nor edir ect= on&utm_ter m=.3644dc63446d 10 -14)
freedom to move
could double the size of the global
economy. More than a dozen studies reviewed
suggested that eliminating
barriers to global mobility would increase world gross domestic product
would add trillions of dollars to the global economy. The economic
gains would be greater than those from dismantling every remaining barrier to
trade and investment around the world.
acros s national borders. Some ec onomists have s uggested that allowi ng peopl e to wor k where their labor is most highl y val ued — s omethi ng that is hardl y r ealisti c, gi ven the political environment in the devel oped worl d—
From the pers pec ti ve of many ec onomis ts, however, i t's a shame more politicians don't s upport gi vi ng peopl e the greater
by ec onomist Mic hael Cl emens , a s eni or fellow at the pr o-immigrati on C enter for Global Devel opment,
by between 67 and 147 perc ent. Cl emens says the benefits are huge even for a more modes t loos eni ng of r estricti ons on
immigration. His research s uggests that all owing j ust 5 percent of the peopl e now livi ng in poor countries to wor k tempor arily or permanentl y i n ric her countries
b. Growth is unsustainable---causes war and environmental
CASSE, 2018.
C enter for the Advanc ement of Steady State Economy. https :// Acc essed 7/3/18 //WR-NC P
Envir onmental Pr otection
Economic growth is the biggest threat of the 21st Century
. Growth, especi all y in wealthy nations, is alr eady causi ng mor e pr oblems than it sol ves. Thes e problems ar e grave: environmental destruction, ec onomic ins tability, and inter national tur moil that threatens national security. Let’s start wi th the environment
rapidl y becomi ng
Think about how an economy is structured. There must be agricultural and
extractive surplus for the manufacturing and services to proliferate, and this
surplus must increase for the economy to grow . , environmental impact increases
in step with agricultural and extractive production. The clearest example is
of this envir onmental impact is biodi versity loss
because the growing economy degrades and liquidates wildlife habitats. every
Virtuall y
environmental problem – air pollution, water shortage, climate change, etc. – can
be traced to economic growth.
economic growth based on technological progress takes away as many jobs as it
Economic growth is a threat not only to the
environment and long-term jobs, but to national security and international
Economic Sustainability How can we have mor e and more jobs – billions mor e, perpetuall y mor e – on a finite planet? T o think we c an have per petuall y more j obs on Earth is li ke thinki ng we c an squeez e a billion j obs i nto a per petuall y s hrinki ng area! In fact thes e proposi tions are pr ecisel y, equall y ludicrous . Sustai nable employment is all about es tablishi ng a steady state ec onomy.
T hink about c apital-intensi ve production wi th robots and automati on. What’s the future i n that? Economic s ustainability req uires a steady s tate ec onomy with stabilized populati on and a rigorous l abor forc e wor king in tandem with appropriate technolog y. Already on board? Wishi ng we had a steady state ec onomy? H elp make it happen: Internati onal Stability
stability. war is a history of competition for natural resources and economic
T he his tor y of
growth .
Need examples? World War II s tarted with the doc trine of “ Lebensr aum,”
the Cold War score was kept in terms of GDP, and conflict in the
Middle East centers on oil and water.
c. Economic growth is the sole reason why the bee
population is declining
Porterfield, 2015.
Andrew Porterfi eld is a writer, editor and communic ati ons c onsultant for academic institutions , c ompanies and non-profits i n the life sci ences. H e is bas ed i n C amarillo, C alifor nia. Genetic Liter ac y Proj ect. 12/3/15. “Tr ade and ec onomic gr owth, not pesticides, maj or driver of beehi ve decli nes ?” https ://geneticliterac ypr ade- economic-growth-not-pestici des-maj or-dri ver-beehi ve-declines /
The debate over whether bees are threatened and if so, why, is c ontenti ous . Globall y, the number of bee hi ves has ris en steadil y over the past dec ade, and the number of bee hi ves is at r ecor d l evel s in North Americ a and thr oug ho ut mos t of Eur ope. But ther e ar e d efinit e pro blem s, say top entomolog ist s. While the number of over-wi nter hi ves is at their highes t numbers in years, l oss es during the s ummer are stubbornl y high. “Su ch h igh colon y losses in th e sum mer and year-round r em ain v er y troubling,” sai d entomologist Jeff Pettis, a res earcher at the USD A’s Agricultural R es earc h Ser vic e Bee R es earch Laborator y in Belts vi lle, Md., and a co- author of the g over nment sur vey that tallied up the bee l oss es. But what’s dri ving thes e l osses? Ac ti vists say pes ticides, neonic otinoi ds i n partic ular, ar e the primar y dri ver. But overall col ony numbers have risen i n the decade and a half since the pestici de was introduc ed. M ost scientis ts s ay the is sue if multi fac tori al. But which factors ar e most key?
Honey imports and exports and dramatic economic changes in certain nations
have been more responsible for honeybee colony decreases
“countries with a
positive correlation between honey production and colony number are the main
honey exporters, while countries with a negative correlation are those importing
The closest match, the German
researchers wrote, were associated with severe economic changes
in the US, the number of disappearing hives reached 42 percent. The
researchers pointed to the growth of commercial beekeeping as a possible link to
colony declines, especially in the US and Western Europe.
(and s ome incr eases) than GM Os, pestici des , mites or diseas es, acc ordi ng to a new study by Ger man res earc hers. M oreover , the data clouded the pic tur e often s een i n medi a and N GO repor ts, pointi ng to a c onsistent, global decr eas e i n bee col oni es. While s ome
countri es, li ke the U S and i n Western Europe, have s een a consis tent decline i n c olonies, other countries have s een dramatic incr eases in col oni es and honey pr oducti on. Southern Europe, for example, s aw a doubling of c oloni es over the past 50 years, while South American c oloni es grew by 5.2 percent annuall y, Afric an col oni es grew by 3.3 perc ent annuall y, and Asian c olonies grew by 4.4 percent annually (all over the past 50 years). Over all, despite the decreases in Wes ter n Eur ope and the U nited States , the F AO data s howed an incr eas e i n the number of all c ol oni es globally. Per haps significantl y, the data als o s howed an incr ease in demand for pollinati on whic h was higher than the number of existi ng honeybee col onies . In fac t,
M oritz and d Erler wr ote. “N one of the col ony number dynamic s of the pas t 50 years, neither i ncr eas e nor decr eas e, show any r elati on to the arrival of novel pests or the use of novel pestici des .” All i n all, about 60 possi bl e environmental caus es of bee heal th threats have been investig ated. But nobody, until the Ger man study, has tried to s ystematic ally match economic iss ues , indi vi dual c ountr y dynamics, and the behavi or of profes sional beekeepers with c hang es i n c olon y numbers.
, such as a 66 percent decline i n c olonies in Madag asc ar after a politic al c oup i n 1977, and a 73 perc ent decli ne in Burundi during that c ountr y’s ci vil war, and signific ant
politic al, social and
decli nes in eastern Europe after the c ollapse of the Sovi et U ni on. But in the U .S. and Western Europe, the decli nes have been steady and signi ficant. Las t year
Accordi ng to Moritz and Erler:
d. Geoengineering fails – it increases risk of environmental
degradation, doesn’t have political support, and are
motivated by companies for profit, economic collapse is
the only option
Unmüßig ’17
– President of the H einric h Böll F oundation ( Bar bar a, Ec o-Business , “Geoengineering will not s ave us fr om cli mate c hang e,” 10/16/17, o-business .c om/opi nion/geoengineering-will-not-s ave-us-fr om-climate-change/)//PS
Proponents of this science feed the
illusion that there is a way to engineer an exit from the climate crisis,
maintain a consumption-heavy lifestyle
climate engineering
is not
only risky; it also directs attention away from the only solution we know will
work: reducing Each of the engineered technologies being discussed carries
dangers and uncertainties.
could cause
irreversible damage. Current models predict that SRM deployment would alter
global precipitation patterns, damage the ozone layer, and undermine the
—the l arge-sc ale manipulation of the Ear th’s natural s ystems— has been popul arised as a means of c ounterac ting the neg ati ve effects of cli mate c hange.
As the world s truggles to rein in emissi ons of cli mate-changi ng gas es and li mit pl anetar y warmi ng, a new technologic al sil ver bullet is gai ning s upporters.
meet the goals of the 2015 Paris cli mate agreement,
—either as a pl anetar y i ns urance polic y or as a l ast- ditc h meas ure to c ombat rising temperatur es—
. But this s oluti on is not as si mple as pr oponents would have us beli eve. Betting on
carbon emissions.
For exampl e, the onl y way to tes t the effecti venes s of s olar r adiati on management (SRM) on a global s cal e woul d be to c arry o ut experiments i n the envir onment— either by spr aying particles into the stratospher e, or by artifici all y modifyi ng cl ouds. While s uch tests would be designed to deter mine whether
c oul d reflec t enough s unlight to cool the planet, experi mentati on its elf
livelihoods of millions of people.
once deployed globally, SRM could spawn
powerful weapons, giving states, corporations, or individuals the ability to
manipulate climate for strategic gain
CDR approaches are already prohibited, owing to concerns about possible
environmental consequences. For example, fertilisation of oceans with carbonsequestering plankton was banned
Parties to that decision worried about the
potential damage to marine life
are simply too good to be true. For example, huge amounts of energy, water, and
fertiliser would be required to operate BECCS systems successfully. The effects
on land use would likely lead to terrestrial species losses, and increase land
competition and displacement of local populations.
these projects could
lead to a net increase in greenhouse gas emissions,
Political preferences, not scientific or
ecological necessity, explain the appeal of geoengineering.
cannot afford to gamble with the future of our planet.
Beyond the ecol ogical ris ks , critics war n that,
(an idea that not even H oll ywood c an resist). But per haps the most i mportant criticism is a politic al one: i n a world of challenged multilater alism, how would global ec ologic al inter ventions be governed? Si milar q ues tions surround the other maj or group of cli mate engineering technol ogies under debate—s o-call ed car bon di oxide r emoval (CDR). Proponents of thes e tec hnologi es propose removing C O2 from the atmos phere and storing it underground or i n the oceans.
by the London Protoc ol on mari ne polluti on in 2008.
techniques. C alled “ bioenerg y with CC S,” or BECC S, this method s eeks to pair the C O2- absor ption c apabilities of fas t-growi ng pl ants wi th underground C O2 storage methods. Proponents argue that BECC S woul d actuall y yiel d “negati ve” emissi ons . Yet, as with other engineer ed s oluti ons, the
. But other CDR appr oac hes are gaini ng s upport. One of the mos t dis cus sed i deas ai ms to integrate biomass with c arbon capture and stor age
Some forecas ts even sugges t that the l and cl earing and c onstruc tion acti vi ties ass oci ated with
at least i n the s hort term. T hen there is the iss ue of sc ale. In order for BECC S to ac hieve emissi ons limi ts s et by the Paris agreement, between 430 mill ion and 580 million hec tar es ( 1.1 billion to 1.4 billion acres) of land woul d be needed to grow the r equired vegetation. T hat is a staggering one third of the worl d’s arable l and. Si mpl y put, there ar e s afer— and proven— ways to withdraw
CO2 from the atmos phere. R ather than creati ng ar tificial C O2-bindi ng “far ms,” g overnments s houl d foc us on pr otecti ng already-exi sting natur al ec os ystems and all owing degraded ones to r ecover. Rai nfores ts, oc eans , and peatl ands (suc h as bogs) have i mmens e C O2 storage c apaciti es and do not req uire untested technol ogical manipulation. By pushi ng unproven tec hnologi es as a c ure for all cli mate-changing ills, proponents are sugges ting that the world fac es an unavoidable choic e: geoengineering or dis aster. But this is disingenuous.
Unfortunatel y, c urrent debates about climate engineering ar e undemocr atic and dominated by tec hnocr atic worldvi ews, natural scienc e and engineering pers pecti ves, and vested inter ests in the fos sil-fuel industries . D eveloping c ountri es, indigenous peoples , and l ocal communities mus t
be given a pr ominent voic e, s o that all ris ks can be full y c onsidered befor e any geoengineeri ng technolog y is tested or i mplemented. By pus hing unpr oven tec hnol ogies as a cur e for all cli mate-c hanging ills, proponents ar e s uggesting that the world fac es an unavoi dabl e c hoic e: geoengineering or dis aster. So what c onvers ation s houl d we be havi ng about geoengineeri ng? F or starters, we need to rethink the exi sting g over nanc e l andsc ape. In 2010, parties to the Uni ted N ati ons’ Convention on Bi ological Di versity (CBD) agreed to a de facto inter national moratorium on cli mate-r elated geoengineering. But today, with powerful advoc ates generati ng s o much pr ess ure to bri ng geoengineering tec hnol ogies out of the lab, i nformal bans ar e no longer s uffi cient. The world urgentl y n eeds an honest debate on the res earch, deployment, and gover nanc e of thes e tec hnol ogies; the C BD and the London Pr otocol are essenti al starti ng points for thes e governance dis cus sions. Among the tec hnol ogies that r equire the mos t scr uti ny are CDR pr ojec ts that thr eaten
indigenous lands, food s ecurity, and water avail ability. Suc h l arge-sc ale technol ogical schemes must be reg ulated diligentl y, to ensur e that climate-change s ol utions do not advers el y affect sustainabl e devel opment or human rights. In additi on, the outdoor tes ting and depl oyment of SRM technol ogies , bec ause of their potential to weaken human rights, democr ac y, and inter national peace, s houl d be banned outright. T his ban shoul d be overs een by a r obus t and acc ountable multil ater al global governance mec hanis m. No sil ver bullet for cli mate change has yet been found. And while geoengineeri ng technologies remain mostl y aspirational, there are pr oven mi tigati on opti ons that c an and s hould be i mplemented vig orousl y. Thes e include sc aling up renewable energ y, phasing out fossil fuels (incl uding an earl y retirement of existi ng fos sil infr astr ucture), wider diffusion of sus tai nabl e agroec ol ogical agriculture, and incr eased energ y and r esourc e i nput i nto our ec onomy.
If we engag e in a seri ous dis cus sion about ec ologicall y sustai nabl e and s oci all y just measur es to protect the Earth’s cli mate, there will be no need to roll the dice on geoengi neering.
e. Renewables won’t solve
Alexander, 15
—lecturer at the Offic e for Environmental Pr ograms, Uni versity of Mel bour ne (Samuel, Suffici enc y Economy pg 109- 110, dml)
it is highly doubtful that renewable energy will ever be
able to sustain a growth-orientated, industrial civilisation.
the problems of
intermittency and storage make renewable energy supply much more expensive
and problematic than most analysts think
electricity only constitutes
about 18% of final energy consumption meaning that there is still around 82% of
energy to replace, including oil used for transport, pesticides, and plastics, etc.
that they will never be able to sustain an industrial
Ther e is one point des er vi ng of further emphasis. In res pons e to the pr obl ems of climate c hange and peak oil, many people naturall y hol d up renewable energ y as the sal vati on of ci vilisation, argui ng that all we need to do is transiti on to renewable energy and the pr obl ems of peak oil and cli mate c hange will be res ol ved. T he pr obl em is that
Althoug h it may be
techn ically f easib le
from an engineering per specti ve,
(see Moriar ty and H onner y, 2012; Tr ainer, 2013a; Tr ainer, 2013b). Even if el ectricity coul d be affor dabl y suppli ed by renewables ,
(IEA, 2012),
If we tr y to
produc e that remaini ng seg ment of energ y with biofuels, the producti on of
bi ofuels
woul d
c ompete with l and
for food produc tion, a conflict that also seems to be already under way, des pite the rel ati vel y low levels of bi ofuels pr oduc tion today (Timilsi na, 2014) . Bi ofuels al so have a
ver y l ow energ y retur n on investment
– between 1 and 3 (M urphy, 2014: 12), s uggesti ng
as we know i t today.
f. Collapse coming now and solves
Pollard 16
(Dave Poll ard, Dave Pollard retired from paid wor k in 2010, after 35 years as an advis or to s mall enterpris es, with a foc us on sustainability, innovation, and understandi ng c ompl exity. He is a long -ti me student of our c ultur e and i ts s ystems, of histor y and of how the world reall y wor ks, and has authored the blog H ow to Save the Worl d for over twel ve years. His book Fi ndi ng the Sweet Spot: T he Natur al Entr epr eneur’s Guide to Responsi ble, Sus tai nable, J oyful Wor k, was publis hed by C helsea Green in 20 08. He is one of the authors of Gr oup Wor ks: A Pattern Languag e for Bringing Life to M eetings and Other Gatherings , published in 2 012. H e is a member of the i nternational Transiti on movement, the C ommuniti es movement and the Shari ng Ec onomy movement, and i s a regul ar writer for the deep ec olog y magazine Shift. H e is wor ki ng on a c ollec tion of short stori es about the world two millenni a fr om now. H e li ves on Bowen
Island, C anada, A Complex Pr edic ament: H ow Our Energ y, Ec onomic and Ec ologic al Systems are C onnec ted, http://howtosavetheworl d.c a/2016/06/01/a-complex- predic ament- how- our-energy- economic-and- ec ological-s ystems-are-c onnected-repos t/, 6/1/2016)//DT
to precipitate economic collapse as a means of mitigating both
energy/resource exhaustion and runaway climate change.
this could happen by reducing capital enough to trigger a crash of
the fragile global financial system.
significant drop in energy/resource demand and use will precipitate a strong
economic contraction
; no amount of ‘stimulus’ will
be able to mitigate it, and there is no deus ex machina like war spending or the
discovery of new cheap resources to get us out of it.
Once the
financial system has the accident that is clearly coming, we will be looking at a
substantial fall in societal complexity, but that fall in complexity will eliminate the
David Hol mgren, one of the founders of the Per mac ulture Movement, r ecentl y stirred up a fires tor m of contr overs y with his Cr ash on D emand ess ay, sugges ting that it woul d be us eful for us
He summarizes : M y argument is ess entiall y that radical , but achi evabl e behaviour c hange from [bei ng] dependent cons umers to [ becomi ng] s elf-reli ant pr oduc ers ( by s ome rel ati vel y s mall minority of the gl obal middl e cl ass) has a chanc e of s toppi ng the jugger naut of c ons umer c apitalis m fr om drivi ng the
world over the climate chang e cliff. It may be a sli m c hanc e, but a better bet than c urrent hercul ean efforts to get the elites to pull the right polic y l evers… M y argument s uggests
This insight s hows Davi d’s appr eciation of the natur e of complex s ys tems and the interrel ati onshi p between our global energ y/res ource, economic and ec ological /climate s ystems. As the chart at the top of this pos t s hows, ec onomic expansi on is dependent on energ y/res ource suppl y, whic h is itself a func tion of the price, demand, inves tment and regul ati on vari abl es I descri bed in Part One, and in any case not endl essl y sus tai nabl e even if the ec onomy is abl e to support higher and higher extrac tion and development cos ts
(whic h has happened each ti me energ y cos ts have moved signific antl y above the $100/bbl l evel). But an even greater thr eat to the c onti nuati on of our c urrent “grow or c ollaps e” economy is the r ealiz ati on that c urrent l evels of debt in our eco nomy ar e unsustai nable. When that r ealiz ati on bec omes i mpossi ble for mar kets to ignor e, we will fac e the greatest depressi on in human histor y
More about that sc enario, whic h even many ec onomists c an’t s eem to c ompr ehend, later i n this articl e. Bac k to D avi d H olmgren’s proposal : T he reacti ons to his article have been s wift and s ometimes harsh. Tr ansiti on founder Rob H opki ns call ed Davi d’s s uggesti ons “a dangerous r oute to go down”. R ob remains firml y in deni al about th e i nevi tability of coll aps e, citi ng
several opti mistic ‘ pros perity-wi thout-growth’ economis ts i n s upport of his belief that a c onc erted global effort by a br oad c oalition of knowledgeable, influential people can pull us out of the positi ve feedbac k loops c urrentl y l eading us towards economic c ollapse (and indeed, End Games i n all three major s ystems). I’ll l ook at that argument later i n this articl e as well. D mitr y Orlov essenti all y dis missed D avi d’s argument as being i nadequate to the tas k, but s aid that d es pite its futility, “D on’t let that stop you fr om tr yi ng bec ause, reg ardl ess of r es ults (if any) it’s a g ood thi ng to be tr ying to do.” Nic ole Fos s, who Davi d ac knowledges as one of his i nfluences, takes the opposite poi nt of vi ew to R ob’s . She has repeate dl y argued that ec onomic coll apse will come s oon in any c as e, wi th or without our attempts to under mi ne the current ec onomic s ystem ( or for that matter, prol ong i t). She writes:
possibility of engaging in such highly complex activities as fracking, horizontal
drilling, exploiting the deep offshore or producing solar photovoltaic panels and
[Bec ause they will be c ompletel y unaffordabl e, none of thes e will ever be] a meani ngful energ y source. In fac t, s ome U S states are already dealing with larg e-scal e abandonment of quic kl y-exhausted frac king sites (wi th their c ommens urate ec ologic al damage), and Shell r ec entl y announc ed i t is abandoning its Arc tic drilling programs bec ause they ar e not economic, even at today’s $100+/bbl oil pric es. Nic ol e’s c oncer n about D avid’s approach is that, sinc e ec onomic coll aps e is (she beli eves) inevitable and reasonabl y immi nent anyway, taking an acti vist approach to opting out of the domi nant ec onomic s ystem i n order to acc eler ate that c ollaps e runs the ris k of s tirring up virul ent opposi tion fr om the rich and powerful, who coul d then demoniz e the entir e tr ansi tion/c ollaps e prepar ation movement as anti- human, and ulti matel y s hift the blame for the s ufferi ng that c ollapse will inevitabl y bri ng about to the “anti-
g. Growth causes disease spread---and it falls along racialized
Holmes, 2015.
Nature Internati onal J ournal of Scienc e. N ature vol ume 521, pages S2–S3. 5/14/15. “ A diseas e of growth” https://doi .org/10.1038/521S2a Acc ess ed 7/11/18 //WR-NC P
As countries undergo economic development, the incidence of disease
looks set to increase.
As economies
grow, so does their
Global trends closely follow economic fortunes2. Incidence in
Western Europe has been relatively flat for two decades, coinciding with a period
of economic stability or decline. Meanwhile, Eastern European countries such as
Slovakia have experienced rapid economic growth from a lower base, and have
seen a corresponding rise
mortality has not
been shared equally11. In the 1980s, African Americans died at a 13% higher rate
than white Americans from the disease. Two decades later, they died at a 53%
higher rate12.
Color ectal c anc er occ urs throughout the world but is mos t c ommon i n devel oped c ountries.
heavil y popul ated
suc h as C hin a
An ani mated versi on of this i nfogr aphic is at go.nature.c om/wgiq vp. By D avid Hol mes. D ISEASE AND DEVELOPM ENT M ore than half ( 55%) of the cas es of c olorectal c anc er occ ur in developed r egions, but devel opi ng c ountries are c atchi ng up.
of color ectal c ancer 1. H EALTH OF N ATIONS
of countries suc h as Brazil, C hina and India
in colorectal canc er
in color ectal c anc er. Looki ng further east, J apan experienc ed a r api d ris e i n c ases between 1990 and 1995, followed by almos t ten years of steady or falling i nci denc e. T his period, ter med ‘ the l ost decade’ by ec onomis ts, saw falli ng wages and ec onomic s tag nation. By c ontrast, the br eaknec k devel opment of Japan’s neighbour C hina was acc omp anied by a dramatic ris e i n c olor ectal c ancer i ncidenc e. SURVIVAL: NOT BLACK AND WH ITE The decline i n c olor ectal c anc er
in the United States
This dis parity is caus ed by factors including differenc es i n how li kel y they ar e to r ecei ve the l atest treatments, and the preval ence of other health problems .
Capitalism’s control over global flows and exchanges deteriorate the
borders of the nation-state. Sovereignty flows from nation-states to
corporations, creating a corporate neo-imperialism, allowing corporate
culture to drive our political, cultural, and economic lives.
Negri and Hardt, 2
-Mic hael H ardt i s an Americ an liter ar y theorist and politic al philosopher. Har dt is best known for his book Empire, whic h was c o- written with Antonio N egri. Antonio "Toni" N egri is an Itali an Mar xis t s ociol ogist and political philos opher, best known for his co- authors hip of Empire. (“Empir e” 336-339) //e-toth
The primary factors of
production and exchange— money, technology, people, and goods—move with
increasing ease across national boundaries; hence the nation-state has less and
less power to regulate these flows and impose its authority over the economy.
Many argue that the gl obalization of capitalist production and exchang e means that ec onomic relations have bec ome mor e autonomous from politic al c ontrols , an d c ons equentl y that politic al s overeignty has decli ned. Some cel ebr ate this new era as the li ber ati on of the capitalist econo my fr om the restricti ons and dis tor tions that political forc es have i mpos ed on it; others lament it as the closi ng of the ins titutional c hannels thr oug h which wor kers and citizens can i nfl uenc e or contes t the c old l ogic of c api talist pr of i t. It is certai nl y tr ue that, i n step with the processes of globalizati on, the s overeignty of nation-states, whil e still effec ti ve, has pr ogressi vel y decli ned.
Even the mos t domi nant nati on-states
shoul d no l onger be thought of as s upr eme and s overeign authoriti es, either outsi de or even within their own borders. The decline i n s over eignty of nation-states, however, does not mean that s overeignty as s uc h has decli ned.1 T hroughout the c ontemporar y transfor mati ons, political c ontrols , state functi ons, and regul ator y mechanis ms have conti nued to r ule the r eal m of ec onomic and s ocial pr oducti on and exc hange. Our basic hypothesis is
sovereignty has taken a new form, composed
of a series of national and supranational organisms united under a single logic
of rule. This new global form of sovereignty is what we call Empire.
The declini ng s overeignty of nation-states and their increasing i nability to regul ate economic and c ultural exc hang es is i n fac t one of the pri mar y s ymptoms of t he c oming of
Empire. T he s over eignty of the nati on-state was the c ornerstone of the i mperi alisms that Eur opean powers cons tructed throughout the modern er a. By ‘‘ Empir e,’’ howe ver, we understand s omethi ng al together different from ‘‘imperi alism.’’ The boundaries defined by the moder n s ys tem of nati o n-states were funda mental to Eur opea n col onialis m and e conomic e xpa nsion: the territorial boundaries of the nation delimited the center of power from whi ch rule wa s exerte d over external foreign territories thr ough a sy stem of channel s and barriers that alternately facilitated and obstructe d the flow s of production and circulati on. I mperialis m was really an exte nsion of the sovereignty of the European nation -states beyond their ow n boundaries. Eventually nearly all the world’ s territories could be parcele d out and the entire worl d ma p could be coded in E uropea n colors: re d for British territory, blue for French, green for Port uguese, a nd s o fort h. Wherever modern s overeignty took root, it constructed a Leviatha n that overarche d its social domain and impose d hierarchical territorial boundarie s, bot h to poli ce the purity of
its own identity and to e xcl ude all that was other. T he pas sage to Empire emerges fr om the twilight of modern sovereignty. In contrast to i mperialis m,
Empire establishes no territorial center of power and does not rely on fixed
boundaries or barriers. It is a decentered and deterritorializing apparatus of rule that
progressively incorporates the entire global realm within its open, expanding frontiers.
through modulating networks of com mand. The distinct national colors of the i mperialist ma p of the world have merged a nd ble nde d in the imperial global rainbow. The transformation of the modern i mperialist geogra phy of the globe a nd the realization of the world market signal a passage withi n the capitalist mode of producti on. Most signifi cant, the s patial divisions of the thr ee Worl ds (First, Second, and T hird) have been scra mbled so that we continually fi nd the First W orld in the T hird, the Thir d in the First, and the Se cond almost now here at all. Capital see ms to be fa ced with a s moot h wor ld —or really, a world defined by new a nd comple x regimes of di fferentiation and homogenization, deterritorialization a nd reterri torialization. T he construction of the paths and limits of these new global flows ha s bee n accompanie d by a transformation of t he domina nt productive pr oce sses the ms elves, with the result that the role of industrial fact ory labor has been red uced and priority given instead to communi cative, cooperative, and a ffe ctive labor
Empire manages hy brid ide ntities, fle xible hierar chies, a nd plural e xchange s
. In the
post modernization of the global economy, the creation of wealth tends ever more toward
what we will call biopolitical production, the production of social life itself, in which the
economic, the political, and the cultural increasingly overlap and invest one another .
Open borders are a capitalist Trojan horse – you think you’re
radical, but actually it’s what the oppressors want – can’t
guarantee rights for noncitizens
Goldin et al 12
Cons equences in the neo-col oni al world
(Ian Goldi n is direc tor of the Oxfor d Mar tin Sc hool, U ni versity of Oxfor d, and pr ofessori al fellow at Balliol C olleg e, Oxford . H e has ser ved as vic e presi dent of the Worl d Bank and advis or to Presi dent Nels on Mandel a, and chi ef exec uti ve of the D evelopment Bank of Southern Afric a. His many books include Gl obalization for D evelopment. Geoffr ey Camer on is a res earch as soci ate at the Oxford Marti n School, U ni versity of Oxford. H e is c urrentl y principal researcher with the Bahá'í Community of Canada. M eera Bal araj an hol ds a PhD from the U ni versity of Cambridge and works for a research organiz ation i n the U nited Ki ngdom. She has als o wor ked for the U nited Nati ons, a U K g over nment department, and a grassroots NGO i n Indi a. “Capitalis m, globalis ati on and migration” http://www.s oci alis on.html //TU-SG)
The Freer Movement of labour is one aspect of globalisation. It is the freedom
of capitalism to increase exploitation through a race to the bottom ,
maxi misi ng pr ofits by hol ding down wages . Other c ampaigners for freer labour are mor e honest – and crude – about this than the authors of Excepti onal People. The Ec onomist, for exampl e,
For migrant
workers it is a very limited freedom to be able to travel the globe if that is the only
way to feed your family. What
evang elises for op en bo rders
, bluntl y arguing that incr eas ed i mmigrati on means lower wages. In 2002, its s ur vey on migrati on stated: "T he gap between lab our’s r ewar ds i n the poor and the ric h c ountri es, even for s omethi ng as menial as clearing tables , dwarfs the gap between the pric es of traded g oods from different parts of the worl d. T he potenti al gains [profits] from liberalising migrati on ther efore dwarf thos e fr om removi ng barriers to world trade". N o c apitalis t government has i mpl ement ed c ompl etel y open bor ders , which would be too politic all y des tabilising for them to c ontempl ate. H owever , while s evere repressi on of as ylum s eekers and undoc umented migrants fr om Africa, Asia, and Latin America r emai ns the norm in ever y advanc ed capitalist c ountr y, many have als o c onsciousl y l oosened border c ontrols, in mos t c ases c overtl y
kind of freedom is it to hand your famil y’s s avi ngs to peopl e s mugglers and then, if you are luc ky, after an often dangerous j ourney, end up wor king without papers for les s than the mi ni mum wage? T he authors of Exc epti onal People ac cept that migration is not a painl ess proces s. T hey li ken it to the ec onomist Jos eph Sc humpeter’s des cripti on of c apitalis m’s ‘cr eati ve destr ucti on’. But any probl ems, they ass ert, ar e l argel y s hort- ter m or s ec ondar y, with the l ong-term cons equenc es over whelmi ngl y positi ve for migrants , and for the c ountries they move to and leave. H owever, the statistic s in the book
migrants’ c ountries of origin is repeatedl y under mi ned.
do mor e to p rove th e ‘destru ction’ th an th e ‘cr eation’
. T he argument that i ncreas ed migration benefits
The exodus leaves some of the poorest countries completely denuded of
skilled workers : "
More than 70% of uni versity graduates from Guyana and J amaic a move to devel oped c ountries, and other c ountries have si mil arly high perc entages of graduates leaving". Mal awi, a parti cul arly horrendous exampl e, "l ost mor e than half its nursi ng staff to emigration over a rec ent peri od of jus t four years, leaving onl y 336 nurses to s er ve a popul ation of 12 million. Meanwhile vacanc y rates stand at 85% for surgeons and 92% for paediatricians". N or c an the authors argue that ‘remittances’ (money s ent home to famil y and friends) develop the ec onomies of migrant wor kers’ countries of origin. R emi ttanc es have grown dramatic ally "from abou t $31.1 billion in 1990, they ar e esti mated to have r eac hed $316 billion by 2009". While they can have a maj or effect on the li ves of i ndi vi duals and communities , Exc eptional People c onc edes that "ther e
are a ver y small number of c ountri es, however, for whic h r emittanc e flows ar e s ubstantial r elati ve to GD P, and in onl y eleven c ountri es are r emittances larger than merchandis e exports" . ... and for advanc ed c apitalist countries
Within The Economically advanced countries the period of
globalisation has seen a dramatic increase in inequality .
smalles t s har e of GDP since 1955 – 54.9%. Meanwhile, c orporate pr ofits had the highes t s har e si nce 1950 – 12.6% .
One factor in this process was
the tendenc y for c apitalis m to move producti on to lower wage ec onomies. Another factor, to var yi ng degrees i n di fferent c ountries,
In Britai n, for example, the pr oportion of gross domes tic product (GD P) that g oes on wages has been s hrinki ng for 30 years. If the share was the same today as it was in 1978, wor kers woul d be taking home £60 billion more ( in today’s money). T he situation is the same i n the U S, where i n J ul y 2011 wages acc ounted for the
the use of super-exploited
migrant workers alongside younger workers, agency workers and so on, to hold
down wages in sectors ,
contemporar y exampl e gi ven of an
to the A8 countries was
particul arl y s er vices , which c oul d not be moved abroad. T hat is not to s uggest an automatic li nk between i ncreas ed migration and the l oweri ng of wag es. If the wor kers’ movement was s trong enough – ideol ogicall y and organis ationall y – to l aunc h an effecti ve str uggle to fig ht for a li vi ng wage for all, then i ncreas ed migration c ould not have had s uc h a s evere effec t in hol ding down wages . Excepti onal People as serts that the effect of migration on wage l evels is l argel y neutr al. Onc e agai n, however, its evi denc e c ontradicts this , when it poi nts out that " for eign born empl oyees at all levels of education ear n l ess per week than nati ve- bor n c olleagues. Migrants earned about 23% l ess than nati ve-born wor kers i n the U S in 2007". T he onl y
‘open borders’ policy is
Britai n’s decision not to i mpos e r estricti ons on wor kers c oming from the A8 ac ces sion c ountri es that j oined the EU in 2004. Between 2004-08 one million wor kers arrived. T he onl y compar abl e s cal e of i mmigrati on to Britain took pl ac e fr om 1870 to 1920, mainl y of J ewis h wor kers fleeing pogr oms in Russia and easter n Europe. Over that ti me, however, there was a net outflow of 2.6 million as a signific ant s ecti on of the middle class, and some wor kers, l eft the U K for C anada, Australi a and South Africa. Today, the s ame esc ape r outes do not exist, s o i ncreas ed i mmigrati on has been a major factor in the U K’s popula tion i ncreasing by an unprecedented three million over the las t dec ade. N ew Labour’s appr oac h
backed fully by big business which
, as Excepti onal People remarks,
has "long been a constituency pushing
for fewer restrictions to cross-border movements
aver age pay i ncreas es r emai ned at the historicall y low l evel of 1% , with aver age pay ris es of 4% whil e inflation was at 3% . Over all,
Britai n l ed the world in ter ms of
the dominanc e of the fi nanc e and ser vic es s ec tor and
growing i nequality
". On its effects , Exc eptional People states that " the U K experi enc e of openi ng borders to A8 c ountri es provi des evi dence of the ec onomic gains promis ed by theorists: it has reduced i nflationary pr ess ures , lower ed unemployment, and boosted the eco nomy". U nempl oyment di d fall duri ng the boom but, even i n April 2007 at the end of the boom, 1.69 million people in Britain were out of wor k. At the s ame ti me, r eal-ter m
. T he US was the onl y advanc ed capitalist countr y with a bigger gap between ric h and poor. Exc eptional P eopl e tries to disguis e the r eal reasons employers often preferred to take on migrant wor kers : " Although for eigners make up about 10% to 15% of the wor kforc e in the UK, about half of all new j obs are filled by migrants, ei ther bec ause they ar e i n are as r equiring partic ular s kills (like pl umbi ng or banki ng) or becaus e nati ves do not want them (s uch as fr uit pic king and el derl y car e)". It is a c ondemnation of British capitalis m that, on top of the demis e of manufacturing, with 3,400 j obs bei ng los t ever y week, young peopl e are not even bei ng trai ned to acq uire ess ential s kills li ke pl umbi ng. And Exc eptional Peopl e omi ts to add that ‘nati ves’ do not want cer tai n jobs bec aus e employers do not pay a li vi ng wag e
for bac k- breaki ng labour. Caring for the elderl y, for example, is a demandi ng and i mportant job, yet the aver age hourl y r ate for a c are wor ker is £6 – les s than a c hec kout operator. Miliband’s s peec h bel atedl y rec ognis ed that the i ncreas ed immigration that took place under N e w Labour has affected wages. He has no s olution, however, opposi ng Gordon Br own’s slog an of ‘Britis h j obs for Britis h wor kers’, not bec ause it was nationalist but bec aus e it is utopian to pr omise wor kers i n Britain jobs! In fact, Miliband is repeati ng Br own’s attempt to wi n s upport on a nati onalist basis. Hi s threat to c ut the extr emel y mi ni mal benefi ts to whic h s ome migrants are entitled r eveals this cl earl y.
Ineligibility for benefits is a
major factor in forcing migrant workers to work for slave labour wages.