Throughout all the debate over undocumented immigrants in this country, George Bush has said he would like to expand on the existing guestworker program. At the time, it may have sounded as though he was being altruistic toward the guestworkers - he wasn't.
He just wanted to supply his corporate buddies with the modern version of slaves to work their factories and fields. By importing these foreign "slaves", they could avoid paying either American or foreign workers a decent livable wage, and avoid benefits altogether.
The Southern Poverty Law Center [SPLC] has investigated the American guestworker program and issued a 48 page report on their findings. The SPLC says these workers are systematically abused. They are:
routinely cheated out of wages,
forced to mortgage their futures to obtain temporary, low-wage jobs,
virtually held captive by employers who seize their documents,
forced to live in squalid conditions,
and denied medical benefits for injuries.
Mary Bauer, head of the SPLC's Immigrant Justice Project, says, "The current program is shamefully abusive in practice, and there is almost no enforcement of worker rights. Guestworkers are usually poor people who are lured here by the promise of decent jobs. But all too often, their dreams are based on lies, their hopes shattered by the reality of a system that treats them as commodities. They're the disposable workers of the global economy. Guestworkers don't enjoy the most basic protections of a free labor market - the ability to change jobs if they are cheated or abused by their employer."
This is what Bush wants more of - the ability to abuse more immigrant workers. He feels that because they're foreigners, they should not have any worker rights. This is just like his belief that the foreigners in Guantanamo shouldn't have any legal rights.
He is too stupid to understand that the rest of the world is judging us by how we treat the less fortunate among us. Is it any wonder that the rest of the world no longer sees us as a beacon of freedom and justice? Far too often, all our government has to offer is violence, injustice and economic slavery.
The Guestworker program doesn't need to be expanded. It needs to be abolished! Slavery was abolished in this country over a century ago. We cannot let Bush, Cheney and their greedy corporate masters re-institute it through the guise of a "helpful" government program.