Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Preserving the Jones Act - Call Your Representatives

This is a theme I have heard before as a solution to our current labor shortage- the government should provide temporary foreign worker 'visas' for the maritime industry. This has always been something the industry bigwigs have kicked around when labor was running low. Why pay American workers more when you can pay 3rd world workers less right? I have seen many many articles on this topic. This is precisely why we have the protections of the Jones Act.

Well, George Bush is pushing the immigration bill- the one that will allow 12million illegals stay and work and draw welfare- and he is pushing really hard since it was rejected earlier this month. This bill is going to dilute the American workforce with low wage earners. Increasing supply of labor and decreasing demand, a flood of aliens that no longer has to work under the table or worry about INS will seek better jobs. Many companies are salivating at that prospect.

I think that the Labor Unions to include the MM&P and every other AFL-CIO member union are doing their membership a diservice by promoting this sort of initiative because it is going to lower the bar for their membership. Suddenly shipping companies will be able to hire cheap immigrant labor when they are given the proposed 'Z visas'. Guess what jobs will be on the chopping block? The ones that Americans aren't willing to do- like going to sea? Ordinary seamen and AB's will be first- then we will see the licensed crew positions taken over as well. It may happen slowly- but it is going to happen if this bill goes through. I heard that the house GOP has introduced a new 'tough' bill today- but I will believe it when I see it (which I haven't).

My advice to anyone who wants to keep American jobs safe-- Go read the bill- it is huge and 70% sounds okay- but 30% is garbage that we can't allow. Like letting illegal aliens that have commited crimes stay in the country and obtain the Z-visas. This is just one of many problems that must be solved. At this point it would be best to oppose this bill outright to keep your birthright safe- and ensure a future for your children.

The USS Stennis was home to a meeting of the maritime officials and business leaders to explain the role of the Combined Task Force and how it is essential that they work together with the maritime communities to keep trade free and open to all merchant vessels from all nations.

Stennis Hosts Maritime Law SymposiumMilitary.com - USAAboard USS John C. Stennis -- Combined Task Force (CTF) 152 hosted a maritime law symposium aboard USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) for business leaders while ...See all stories on this topic


MaritimeLinks- Editor said...

I just wanted to post a quick note. I don't know how accurate this was because I didn't read it- it was a personal article that said the AFL-CIO was opposed to the immigration bill. To the best of my knowledge, the AFL-CIO approved of illegal immgration, supported this bill, and praised Bush for pushing it, but I could be wrong. I did read this, and i also heard this from a union member. So if you have information that differs from what I have heard, please post it here. I am always up for a debate.

Unofficialski said...

The letter is in my mailbox, this is a good cause that we can't give up on!

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