Ga.’s farm-labor crisis going exactly as planned

Gov. Nathan Deal signs a tough illegal-immigration bill on May 13.

Gov. Nathan Deal signs a tough illegal-immigration bill on May 13, with House Speaker David Ralston, left, and bill sponsor Rep. Matt Ramsey, right, looking on.

After enactment of House Bill 87, a law designed to drive illegal immigrants out of Georgia, state officials appear shocked to discover that HB 87 is, well, driving a lot of illegal immigrants out of Georgia.

It might almost be funny if it wasn’t so sad.

The resulting manpower shortage has forced state farmers to leave millions of dollars’ worth of blueberries, onions and other crops unharvested and rotting in the fields. It has also put state officials into something of a panic at the damage they’ve done to Georgia’s largest industry.

Barely a month ago, you might recall, Gov. Nathan Deal welcomed the TV cameras into his office as he proudly signed HB 87 into law. Two weeks later, with farmers howling, a scrambling Deal was forced to order a hasty investigation into the impact of the law he had just signed, as if all this had come as quite a surprise to him.

The results of that investigation have now been released. According to survey of 230 Georgia farmers conducted by Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black, farmers expect to need more than 11,000 workers at some point over the rest of the season, a number that probably underestimates the real need, since not every farmer in the state responded to the survey.

“The agriculture industry is the number one economic engine in Georgia and it is my sincere hope to find viable and law-abiding solutions to the current problem our farmers face,” Deal said in announcing the findings. In the meantime, Deal proposes that farmers try to hire the 2,000 unemployed criminal probationers estimated to live in southwest Georgia.

Somehow, I suspect that would not be a partnership made in heaven for either party.

According to the survey, more than 6,300 of the unclaimed jobs pay an hourly wage of $7.25 to $8.99, or an average of roughly $8 an hour. Over a 40-hour work week in the South Georgia sun, that’s $320 a week, before taxes, although most workers probably put in considerably longer hours. Another 3,200 jobs pay $9 to $11 an hour. And while our agriculture commissioner has been quoted as saying Georgia farms provide “$12, $13, $14, $16, $18-an-hour jobs,” the survey reported just 169 openings out of more than 11,000 that pay $16 or more.

In addition, few of the jobs include benefits — only 7.7 percent offer health insurance, and barely a third are even covered by workers compensation. And the truth is that even if all 2,000 probationers in the region agreed to work at those rates and stuck it out — a highly unlikely event, to put it mildly — it wouldn’t fix the problem.

Given all that, Deal’s pledge to find “viable and law-abiding solutions” to the problem that he helped create seems naively far-fetched. Again, if such solutions existed, they should have been put in place before the bill ever became law, because this impact was entirely predictable and in fact intended.

It’s hard to envision a way out of this. Georgia farmers could try to solve the manpower shortage by offering higher wages, but that would create an entirely different set of problems. If they raise wages by a third to a half, which is probably what it would take, they would drive up their operating costs and put themselves at a severe price disadvantage against competitors in states without such tough immigration laws. That’s one of the major disadvantages of trying to implement immigration reform state by state, rather than all at once.

The pain this is causing is real. People are going to lose their crops, and in some cases their farms. The small-town businesses that supply those farms with goods and services are going to suffer as well. For economically embattled rural Georgia, this could be a major blow.

In fact, with a federal court challenge filed last week, you have to wonder whether state officials aren’t secretly hoping to be rescued from this mess by the intervention of a judge. But given how the Georgia law is drafted and how the Supreme Court ruled in a recent case out of Arizona, I don’t think that’s likely.

We’re going to reap what we have sown, even if the farmers can’t.

– Jay Bookman

619 comments Add your comment

Left wing management

June 14th, 2011
3:32 pm

Nathan Deal is like Mitt Romney: a strip miner of human lives.

Stonethrower

June 14th, 2011
3:33 pm

I won’t believe crops are rotting in the fields until I see evidence. Scare tactics!

Soothsayer

June 14th, 2011
3:34 pm

The law of unintended consequences.

ProgressivePeach

June 14th, 2011
3:35 pm

My favorite line from Star Trek II: “I’m laughing at the superior intellect.”

Joe Mama

June 14th, 2011
3:36 pm

Did anyone see last night’s episode of “Squidbillies” on Cartoon Network? It also aired this morning on the West feed.

Long story short — the rich local business owner decided he really DID want to help fund the wall that the hillbillies were building around their county to keep the immgrant workers away. He decided it would give him a reason to relocate his factory to Mexico and hire cheaper labor anyway.

Soothsayer

June 14th, 2011
3:38 pm

Jay, it’s like I done said onced before about this new immigration law:

If you’re a Rightwing nutcase what’s got illegals a-workin’ fur ya, then you’re agin it.

If you’re a Rightwing nutcase what ain’t got illegals a-workin’ fur ya, the you’re fur it.

Jay

June 14th, 2011
3:39 pm

Sooth, these are the intended consequences….

arnold

June 14th, 2011
3:40 pm

It’s not just the farmers who will be left holding the bag. Many retail establishments will also. I understand many of the immigrants are already leaving and retail sales are slowing.

Finn McCool

June 14th, 2011
3:41 pm

Maybe we elect some adults next go around?

Left wing management

June 14th, 2011
3:41 pm

Actually, in all seriousness, I’ve got a better idea for bridging the worker gap, a ‘modest proposal’ if you will:

Let’s out-Wisconsin Wisconsin and out-Maine Maine and just go ahead and do away with all the remaining child labor laws wholesale and just let small children work the fields.

Julie T

June 14th, 2011
3:42 pm

It won’t effect corporate donations or his metro ATL and N GA base – so he really doesn’t care……let the crops rot!!!

Joe Mama

June 14th, 2011
3:43 pm

LWM, I don’t recall the details offhand, but children under 18 can work in agricultural jobs under certain circumstances. I’m afraid I don’t recall all the particulars, though; maybe some other poster can fill in the details.

Finn McCool

June 14th, 2011
3:43 pm

I’m surprised – surprised Republicans enacted a law that didn’t include a tax cut.

Perhaps we need an investigation!

Yahtzee

June 14th, 2011
3:43 pm

ty webb

June 14th, 2011
3:44 pm

boy o’boy, how did we ever do anything without those illegals?

Soothsayer

June 14th, 2011
3:44 pm

Jay, it seems like I remember a similar law being passed in Arizona a couple of years ago. And, lo and behold! the public went nuts because they couldn’t get their lawns mowed. The restaurants and motels and slaughterhouses has to pay a real wage.

Finn McCool

June 14th, 2011
3:45 pm

children under 18 can work in agricultural jobs under certain circumstances. I’m afraid I don’t recall all the particulars

Yeah, you just can’t work em 18 hours a day, 6 days a week like we used to….ahh, the good ole days.

Recon (2nd.and 3rd.)

June 14th, 2011
3:45 pm

I like Deals idea of using state convicts. Make entering the country illegally a felony offense and then those farmers having trouble finding workers can get them back. I thought I read a week or so ago that over 50% of the farms are finding adequate labor. If that’s true I would wonder what they’re doing right versus those who’re reporting a problem.

saywhat?

June 14th, 2011
3:46 pm

Stupid is as stupid does.

I gotta vote me some more Republicans into office. First, nationally, they drive the economy into the ground, the deepest recession since the great depression. Now, as we are slowly digging our way out, the local repubs decide to cripple Georgia’s leading industry over xenophobia and bigotry, almost ensuring that Georgia won’t join other states in economic recovery.

How much do you want to bet that when Georgia crashes again, Republicans will say it was because they weren’t conservative enough, there weren’t enough tax cuts for the wealthy, and illegal immigration was to blame?

Stupid is as stupid does.

Left wing management

June 14th, 2011
3:47 pm

Reading about this, my vision of Nathan Deal was blurring into a Deliverance-esque vision of a 1950s sheriff kicking back with his boots on the table, chewing on a straw, saying: “yeapp, we’ll let them damn convicks werk them fields”.

Soothsayer

June 14th, 2011
3:47 pm

The law of unintended consequences is an adage or idiomatic warning that an intervention in a complex system always creates unanticipated and often undesirable outcomes. Akin to Murphy’s law, it is commonly used as a wry or humorous warning against the hubristic belief that humans can fully control the world around them. Many fields of study in the sciences and humanities embrace this concept, including economics, history, philosophy, political science, and sociology.

(From Wikipedia)

Joe Mama

June 14th, 2011
3:49 pm

Recon — “I like Deals idea of using state convicts. Make entering the country illegally a felony offense and then those farmers having trouble finding workers can get them back. I thought I read a week or so ago that over 50% of the farms are finding adequate labor.”

Aren’t there laws against using convict labor in private, for-profit enterprises?

Seems to me you’d need to change *several* laws to make this plan work, and in the meantime, farmers are taking a hit and their crops are going bad.

moonbat betty

June 14th, 2011
3:52 pm

There are plenty of able bodies to do the job.

Think outside the box of using illegal immigrant slaves, people!

Charlie

June 14th, 2011
3:52 pm

“Barely a month ago, you might recall, Gov. Nathan Deal welcomed the TV cameras into his office as he proudly signed HB 87 into law.”

He didn’t welcome all of them, you know…

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
3:54 pm

So the GOP runs off all the workers and are calling for cutting spending. Way to ruin the agriculture business guys! Good job!!

Peadawg

June 14th, 2011
3:55 pm

Unemployment numbers in Ga should be dropping now. Or are Georgians too good these jobs? Suck up your pride and get to work!!!

Boo Hoo

June 14th, 2011
3:56 pm

The farmers should pay a living wage with benefits to get the employees they need. They got so spoiled paying the slave wages to illiterate and unskilled illegals, they now cry cuz they have to do things the legal way. Boo Hoo! Sorry, no sympathy for greedy businesses who, for years, have violated the law! I’ll pay an extra nickel for a tomato if I have to. Quit yer whining already !!

ty webb

June 14th, 2011
3:57 pm

so where do these pitiful farmers fall when it comes to “serious” illegal immigration policy?…you know, the policy that “goes after the employers”?

Jay

June 14th, 2011
3:57 pm

That is correct, Charlie. I thought of that as I was writing that….

Scooter

June 14th, 2011
3:59 pm

Sounds like some waivers are in order.

AmVet

June 14th, 2011
3:59 pm

I do not condone using illegal laborers as workers, but this has been the reality in America for a LONG time. Lots of these people could now be working their way towards citizenship.

I hate this for the small farmer. I grew up with them and virtually all of my first jobs were working for them. Trust me, they absolutely break their backs to make a living. And there are only about a thousand things that can go wrong and hurt them badly in the pocketbook.

This is so typical for the cons. They never found a fire they couldn’t throw gasoline on.

READY! FIRE! AIM!!

Peadawg

June 14th, 2011
4:01 pm

” They got so spoiled paying the slave wages to illiterate and unskilled illegals, they now cry cuz they have to do things the legal way. ”

Bingo!

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
4:03 pm

I hate to have to say it, but you get what you vote for. I hope the farmers learn this lesson.

andygrdzki

June 14th, 2011
4:04 pm

So, in the month that since the signing of the bill, 11,000 workers have left the state? Food rotting in the fields….
WOW… where was this reported…. I think the report said there was a need, did it say the needs have not been met?

scrumpdillyicious

June 14th, 2011
4:04 pm

gather up all the “i’ll work for food” dudes at the north druid hills exit-two birds one stone-booyah!

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:05 pm

So, Jay, I guess your answer is to leave illegal immigrants alone. :roll:

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:06 pm

Bosch
June 14th, 2011
4:03 pm

What happened, Bosch, did your landscaper leave with them and now you have weeds all over your yard?

Recon (2nd.and 3rd.)

June 14th, 2011
4:06 pm

Joe Mama, with unemployment over 9% and in reality actually higher, it’s hard to make a case that there’s insufficient available labor. The cost burden of illegal immigration generally is a higher priority that we need to address and I can’t think of anything we can do other than make conditions too inhospitable for them to remain here. Removal of the job magnet helps to achieve it.

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
4:08 pm

Leg,

“What happened, Bosch, did your landscaper leave with them and now you have weeds all over your yard?”

No to both, why do you ask?

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:08 pm

Left wing management
June 14th, 2011
3:47 pm

No, no, no, you got it all wrong. Not from “Deliverance”. More like Strother Martin in “Cool Hand Luke”. :lol:

poison pen

June 14th, 2011
4:08 pm

STOP!, don’t look up, the sky is falling. Maybe now the farmers will hire legal workers.

You libs want to punish the businesses for using illehal workers but obviously not the farmers, are they not a business.

Obama can now get legal workers with work permits and there shsouldn’t be a problem, end of story.

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
4:08 pm

So cons, when all them illegals leave, who are you gonna blame all the woes of your world on? I guess we still have the poor folks too.

getalife

June 14th, 2011
4:09 pm

Another gop anti business position.

Dusty

June 14th, 2011
4:09 pm

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out this so called problem. When you have plenty of jobs and plenty of people without jobs, that you put two and two together.

Crybabies all. Farmers for whining. Liberals for sneering. Unemployed for sitting on their duffs.

I think it is time to return to a basic peinciple. That is: if you want to eat then work!

poison pen

June 14th, 2011
4:10 pm

The Leg Lamp is a “major award”……

June 14th, 2011
4:05 pm

So, Jay, I guess your answer is to leave illegal immigrants alone.

Leg, that’s been all the libs answers.

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
4:10 pm

“Obama can now get legal workers with work permits ”

Since when did the Georgia agriculture industry become Obama’s to deal with?

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:10 pm

Bosch
June 14th, 2011
4:08 pm

You said you “hope the farmers learn this lesson”. I guess when some landscapers are forced to leave you’ll “hope those rich home owners learn their lesson” as well.

moonbat betty

June 14th, 2011
4:10 pm

What is wrong with requiring welfare or unemployment beneficiaries to fill these jobs?

If there aren’t enough able bodies (there are more than enough), there are plenty of convicts that would rather pick fruit than sit in a 6×10 cell all day with Bubba.

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:12 pm

Here’s what’s hilarious from the posts above. Not ONE liberal poster supports this bill ridding the state of illegals, nor do they offer a “legal” solution to the problem. Just beotching about a bill signed by a GOP Governor.

Granny Godzilla

June 14th, 2011
4:12 pm

Thank heavens for home garden, eh what?

The local produce will be to pricey and the stuff from the west coast may be radioactive……

poison pen

June 14th, 2011
4:12 pm

June 14th, 2011
3:59 pm

AmVet,

I do not condone using illegal laborers as workers, but this has been the reality in America for a LONG time.

So that makes it ok. DUH!

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
4:12 pm

Leg,

And? Your point?

ty webb

June 14th, 2011
4:13 pm

so last month it was a local restauranteer…today it’s those poor farmers. Should we expect a bleeding heart expose on how the bill is going to hurt the “spa” industry next month, Jay?…One can only hope for a “happy ending”.

AmVet

June 14th, 2011
4:14 pm

Peadawg, those farmers need a lot more help than just uniformed, simplistic non-answers..

But let me see if I understand you cons correctly.

You suggest that you’re gonna find 11,000 Georgians who will just pack up and move for weeks and months on end to………cotton fields in Moultrie and peanut fields in Richland and peach orchards in Fort Valley and onion fields in Vidalia?

For minimum wage?

You really think that fat, self-absorbed, lazy suburban men and women are gonna fill those jobs? Hell, their fat, self-absorbed, lazy kids won’t even do that work.

Neo-cons clearly don’t have the first clue about farming and harvesting crops. How could they? The only farm they’ve ever seen was on Green Acres.

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:14 pm

Hey, Jay, care to provide some stats on the cost of the “rotting” produce versus the medical/law enforcement/educational, etc. costs attributed to those 11,000 illegals?

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
4:14 pm

“Not ONE liberal poster supports this bill ridding the state of illegals, nor do they offer a “legal” solution to the problem. Just beotching about a bill signed by a GOP Governor”

Well, gee Leg, you could have asked instead of speaking for all of us and using your tainted crystal ball because I agree that I think prison labor should be used. Didn’t feel the need to repeat it since it had been written.

Night Train

June 14th, 2011
4:15 pm

P PEN is correct. You libs wanted to punish the employers for hiring illegal workers and it seems that this HR 87 bill is doing just that and you’re whining about it. Makeup your minds, do you want to punish employers or not.

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:16 pm

AmVet
June 14th, 2011
4:14 pm

So what you’re saying is there will never by 0% unemployment because some people care NOT to work for minimum wage, right? I agree.

Joe Mama

June 14th, 2011
4:16 pm

Recon — “Joe Mama, with unemployment over 9% and in reality actually higher, it’s hard to make a case that there’s insufficient available labor.”

Actually, it’s EASY to make the case that there’s insufficient available labor — at the prevailing wage. A change like this shouldn’t be made in a precipitous manner, and now we’re all going to suffer for it.

“”The cost burden of illegal immigration generally is a higher priority that we need to address and I can’t think of anything we can do other than make conditions too inhospitable for them to remain here. Removal of the job magnet helps to achieve it.”

If you’ve read other posts by me, you’d know I generally agree. However, hosing a major state industry on extremely short notice is not the way to go about doing it.

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
4:16 pm

“care to provide some stats on the cost of the “rotting” produce versus the medical/law enforcement/educational, etc. costs attributed to those 11,000 illegals”

Well considering no one keeps records on those things, any “data” provided would be kind of pointless or made up.

moonbat betty

June 14th, 2011
4:17 pm

“You really think that fat, self-absorbed, lazy suburban men and women are gonna fill those jobs? Hell, their fat, self-absorbed, lazy kids won’t even do that work.”

You pull their benefits if not.

Consider it a “character builder”

Recon (2nd.and 3rd.)

June 14th, 2011
4:17 pm

“Since when did the Georgia agriculture industry become Obama’s to deal with?”

Bosch, he was talking about shovel ready jobs that would keep unemployment under 8% back in 09. Why not agriculture?

poison pen

June 14th, 2011
4:17 pm

Night Train

June 14th, 2011
4:15 pm

P PEN is correct. You libs wanted to punish the employers for hiring illegal workers and it seems that this HR 87 bill is doing just that and you’re whining about it. Makeup your minds, do you want to punish employers or not.

Night Train,

They only want to punish the rich employers.

Peadawg

June 14th, 2011
4:17 pm

“P PEN is correct. You libs wanted to punish the employers for hiring illegal workers and it seems that this HR 87 bill is doing just that and you’re whining about it. Makeup your minds, do you want to punish employers or not.”

HaHa no kiddin…..

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:18 pm

Bosch
June 14th, 2011
4:14 pm

Is there a law or statute that says prisoners can be forced to pick cotton, fruit, onions, et al?

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:19 pm

Bosch
June 14th, 2011
4:16 pm

Then maybe it’s “pointless” to complain about the loss of illegals in agriculture because the cost savings MAY outweigh the agricultural losses. It’s just another left attempt to trash a GOP Governor. Just sayin….

Doc

June 14th, 2011
4:20 pm

Let the farm families be ruined. I damn their crocodile tears and hope they fold quicker than a house of cards in a windstorm.

Let the state suffer for its cruelty and heartlessness. And flogging parolee’s? Why not just bring back slavery or indentured servitude? ANYTHING apparently except paying a living wage.

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
4:20 pm

Leg, @ 4:18

I have no idea. But it is my opinion that prison labor would be a good fix for this problem.

Keep Up the Good Fight!

June 14th, 2011
4:21 pm

The righties still dont comprehend. Their answer is punish the “illegals” and no action for fix the issue of the need for their labor here until we “solve” the border problem. Deal and the Republicans played their “get tough” on some policy and did not think it threw. But the right still wont acknowledge that we need a solution to the entire situation and that the tough talk nonsense does not provide a solution.

Recon (2nd.and 3rd.)

June 14th, 2011
4:21 pm

“Actually, it’s EASY to make the case that there’s insufficient available labor — at the prevailing wage.”

Joe Mama, I’d have to disagree.

Brad Steel

June 14th, 2011
4:22 pm

As opposed to hiring criminal probationers, Deal should recommend hiring registered sex offenders. It would make his suggestions seem more sincerely absurd.

Dusty

June 14th, 2011
4:22 pm

Hey,

Anybody who can sit at their conputer all day and blog can certainly sort peaches and pack heavy blueberries. You could eat some fruit on the side and get your extra vitamins & minerals. I say, draft the all day & night bloggers and put ‘em to work. Bye bye bloggers!! Cure the Crisis!!

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
4:22 pm

Leg @ 4:19

Why bring this issue up? Becaue we are talking about a major industry in this State with major economic consequences. Maybe that just doesn’t mean much to you. Who knows?

Joe Mama

June 14th, 2011
4:23 pm

AmVet — “You suggest that you’re gonna find 11,000 Georgians who will just pack up and move for weeks and months on end to………cotton fields in Moultrie and peanut fields in Richland and peach orchards in Fort Valley and onion fields in Vidalia?”

“For minimum wage?”

“You really think that fat, self-absorbed, lazy suburban men and women are gonna fill those jobs? Hell, their fat, self-absorbed, lazy kids won’t even do that work.”

“Neo-cons clearly don’t have the first clue about farming and harvesting crops.”

(applauds)

This is EXACTLY what I was thinking.

An out-of-work software programmer isn’t going to go down to Central GA for two or three weeks and live out of his car just to harvest Vidalias, and then go somewhere else to live out of his car and harvest something else, lather, rinse, repeat.

Moonbat Betty — “You pull their benefits if not.”

You pull someone’s unemployment insurance for *not* working? Honey, I don’t think you’ve thought this through very well. :D

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:23 pm

Bosch
June 14th, 2011
4:20 pm

You and I agree on this one.

But can you imagine the ACLU getting hold of this one? Forcing prisoners to work in the hot sun in the fields? Can you imagine the verocity of the protests if black prisoners were forced to pick cotton?

A few years ago I read where it takes in excess of $30K per year (I think that was the right number) to maintain a prisoner. I believe they should have to work it off. Put them in the fields, cleaning streets, whatever.

joe

June 14th, 2011
4:24 pm

You see problems, I see opportunity. If you need a job in GA, there you go. Might not be your first choice, but better than sitting around waiting for a govt handout. Get to work…you might drop a few lbs and get better health and a paycheck.

Granny Godzilla

June 14th, 2011
4:24 pm

Interesting tidbit…..GA law says prisoners can work for free.

Of course that was one of the issues in the Georgia Prison strike
last December.

AmVet

June 14th, 2011
4:24 pm

“So what you’re saying…”. Whenever I see that, I am dead certain that nothing but bullsh*t is gonna follow…

pen, spare me your puerile misrepresentations.

Had the rabid right bigots not gone batshiite crazy when Bush tried to implement some sanity to the situation, things could be different now. And perhaps considerably better.

But you fake conservatives don’t want pragmatic solutions. You want to stick to your guns and the devastation and ruined lives be damned.

Too bad you can’t just round up all of those people – hopefully with much violence – and just deport them, right? It’s more fun that way, right?

Is that your brilliant answer to this problem?

Honu

June 14th, 2011
4:24 pm

Seriously, poison pen — WTH does President Obama have to do with this? It’s a dang sickness, I tell ya. . .

Brad Steel

June 14th, 2011
4:24 pm

If you don’t make a profit after paying legal workers, you’re going to go out of business.

Unless, of course, you can get corporate welfare via those delicious farm subsidies.

Dusty

June 14th, 2011
4:25 pm

Silly Keep, 4:21

Republicans like to abide by the laws of the United States. Ever head of “illegal”? Did you ever once think of THAT?

poison pen

June 14th, 2011
4:25 pm

Jay, it’s about time.

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
4:26 pm

Leg,

“But can you imagine the ACLU getting hold of this one?”

If these prisoners were put in unsafe working conditions then they would have a case, otherwise I don’t think it’s an issue. I certainly agree that prisoners should have to work off their time. Definitely.

Recon (2nd.and 3rd.)

June 14th, 2011
4:26 pm

The leftist Democrats and I will include Republicans haven’t offered a workable plan to deal with illegal immigration, so the states have been left with no other alternative. The left wants amnesty because they see illegals transitioned to citizens as a another voting block.

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:27 pm

Bosch
June 14th, 2011
4:22 pm

I do care, but if we’re going to make an issue of the costs of NOT having illegal workers in agriculture, then before we advance the argument I believe we should look at the other impacts (medical/schools, etc) of them being here.

Using your logic, I could say you don’t care about the rule of law. I believe you do, but I could make that stretch based on your earlier posts.

BlahBlahBlah

June 14th, 2011
4:27 pm

Plantation owners used Bookman’s argument about 140 years ago. Only they weren’t talking about illegal immigrants.

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:29 pm

AmVet
June 14th, 2011
4:24 pm

“AmVet”…Whenever I see that, I am dead certain that nothing but bullsh*t is gonna follow…

poison pen

June 14th, 2011
4:29 pm

Honu

June 14th, 2011
4:24 pm

Seriously, poison pen — WTH does President Obama have to do with this? It’s a dang sickness, I tell ya. . .

He has everything to do with this, he runs the damn country, it’s his job.
He just needs to pick up the friggin phone and make a call to immigration and have them get the ball rolling on LEGAL work permits.

Why should all the other nationalities suffer waiting for years to come to our country LEGALLY and the libs give a pass to the ILLEGALS, that’s just plain wrong.

Bosch

June 14th, 2011
4:30 pm

“but I could make that stretch based on your earlier posts.”

How? When have I ever wrote that I don’t care about the rule of law? For one thing I think we should look at those things too, but don’t let your tainted crystal ball get in the way of your leaps! :)

Gotta run, conference call….good God, how I hate those…….

Hillbilly D

June 14th, 2011
4:30 pm

Judging from the way things are in my area, I’d guess it’s the large farmers who are complaining, a lot more than the small farmers.

ty webb

June 14th, 2011
4:30 pm

“Too bad you can’t just round up all of those people – hopefully with much violence – and just deport them, right? It’s more fun that way, right?”

Amvet,
didn’t you get the memo. None of that is called for. Simply passing the bill has caused all them to leave. President Obama has actually deported more of “those people”, yet I haven’t heard a word from you condemning him for it. Which is odd, because you are normally such a fierce critic of the President…you tell us that quite often.

Keep Up the Good Fight!

June 14th, 2011
4:31 pm

So now the proposal is that prisoners should work for private enterprise for free….. talk about picking winners and losers and acting out a few bad movie plots too.

And Dusty…do stopp beign silly. Bush tried to reform immigrations and the Republicans said no. The Republican rant has been no to any effort to make some comprehensive fix. Build the dang fence nonsense

AmVet

June 14th, 2011
4:31 pm

But we both know that you’ll read every one of my posts anyway, huh, meat?

Tundra Dude

June 14th, 2011
4:31 pm

JB wrote, in part:
If they raise wages by a third to a half, which is probably what it would take, they would drive up their operating costs and put themselves at a severe price disadvantage against competitors in states without such tough immigration laws.

I don’t know what their profits are, but maybe they shouldn’t be engraved in stone.
Fact: A cucumber picker earns less than 3 cents each. They retail for about 50 cents. Doubling the wages adds a mere 3 cents to the retail price. I’d guess it’s the same with onions. The pickers’ wages are a tiny fraction of the retail price. Looks like there’s plenty of room for profit.

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:33 pm

Bosch
June 14th, 2011
4:30 pm

My point is that you seemed to be upset about the impact of illegals leaving the state. There were here illegally. End of discussion. That’s why I said I could make the stretch that you were against the rule of law. You seemed to be endorsing their illegal presence.

AmVet

June 14th, 2011
4:33 pm

Simply passing the bill has caused all them to leave.

And let me guess, you think Elvis is atill alive…

Jay

June 14th, 2011
4:33 pm

If you want to see the list of farm-subsidy recipients and amounts in Georgia ….

http://farm.ewg.org/top_recips.php?fips=13000&progcode=total&yr=2009&regionname=Georgia

Interesting nugget: 10 percent of the farms collected 82 percent of the subsidies in 2009.

Real Scooter

June 14th, 2011
4:34 pm

driving a lot of illegal immigrants out of Georgia.

It might almost be funny if it wasn’t so sad.

Jay,I don’t find it sad at all. Let them come back in the right way.

Joe Mama

June 14th, 2011
4:35 pm

Tundra Dude — “Fact: A cucumber picker earns less than 3 cents each. They retail for about 50 cents. Doubling the wages adds a mere 3 cents to the retail price. I’d guess it’s the same with onions. The pickers’ wages are a tiny fraction of the retail price. Looks like there’s plenty of room for profit.”

I’d be interested in seeing further breakdowns of this sort (e.g. cost per tater, cost per peach, cost per onion, etc). Do you have a link you could share, please?

The Leg Lamp is a "major award"......

June 14th, 2011
4:35 pm

Keep Up the Good Fight!
June 14th, 2011
4:31 pm

KUTGOOF, “talk about picking winners and losers”.

You mean like Obama gave TARP money to some companies and not their competitors? That kind of picking winners and losers, right?