Shoebat.com has reported for years on the political football that is “illegal immigration”, and how the US is wholly dependent on it to support her economy. To explain simply, without cheap labor from Mexico and parts of Central America, there would be nobody to pick the crops that would result in very high crop losses and prices. The illegal labor is a way of circumventing labor laws that are, in the case of farming, prohibitive, and gives the illegals a good wage at a dignified living for their context while helping Americans to have good food. Everybody wins.
However, this cycle has been seriously disrupted by the COVID-19 spread, where many persons are either not coming to work because they have self-quarantined or headed back to Mexico and Central America. As a result, according to NBC Montana, this has resulted in many thousands of pounds of crops being forced to rot in a move that will impoverish farmers, drive up crop prices, and further strain the financial burdens of the government amid inevitable claims for crop insurance and losses.
Mounds of harvested zucchini and yellow squash ripened and then rotted in the hot Florida sun. Juicy tomatoes were left to wither — unpicked — in farmers’ fields.
Thousands of acres of fruits and vegetables grown in Florida are being plowed over or left to rot because farmers can’t sell to restaurants, theme parks or schools nationwide that have closed because of the coronavirus.
Other states are having the same issues — agriculture officials say leafy greens in California are being hit especially hard, and dairy farmers in Vermont and Wisconsin say they have had to dump a surplus of milk intended for restaurants.
With most of its harvests in the winter months, the problem is acute in Florida. For example, a few dozen people clamored to buy 25-pound (11- kilogram) boxes of Roma tomatoes direct from a packing plant over the weekend in Palmetto, a city on the western coast.
The cost per box? Just $5.
“This is a catastrophe,” said tomato grower Tony DiMare, who owns farms in south Florida and the Tampa Bay area. “We haven’t even started to calculate it. It’s going to be in the millions of dollars. Losses mount every day.” (source)
But where are the “Americans” lining up to do these jobs?
There are real jobs here- and yet, nobody wants to take them.
This is partially understandable, for the work is very hard, the pay is very low, and it will likely not be sufficient to pay one’s bills. In some cases, the work input may not be worth the output, and thus would be a bad investment.
That said, it illustrates the need for not only immigration reform, but a just balance to immigration policies.
The US needs people from Mexico and Central America as much as we need them. It is a healthy relationship balanced by each other, not a parasitic one as many politicians attempt to present it as being.
Now that the relationship has been interrupted, the interdependent quality between the two has been shown, and how important it really is for the stability and prosperity of both.
The trend from this should be obvious and immediate- expect to see much higher prices for produce of all types at the grocery store, for one cannot suffer serious losses on commodities that are typically consumed domestically without seeing a rise in price to compensate for the financial losses incurred by crop damage. This comes at a time when many people are out of work, and as with many things, it risks falling into a cyclical type trap of rising prices with an inability to pay driving down demand that causes more price increases with more people unable to pay. If the country enters into this cycle, it will inevitably worsen the already present conditions of poverty and misery that afflict so many, forcing more economic cutbacks in other areas that will again reduce current expenditures and drive more businesses to close their doors permanently.
Eventually stability will return, but with a most likely much poorer population, and an America more like that of a century ago in terms of wealth than what currently exists. However, for the meantime, those who are watching this trend should take note to stock up on provisions, to work extra, to spend less, and to prepare for the inevitable, for as prices rise and so does poverty, one must be prepared to make sacrifices and redistribute how one spends and invests one’s money while there is still time to do so.