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The Working Poor Shipler Essays

The Working Poor Essay

769 Words4 Pages

American factories can comprise of about up to 1000 workers. If American factories are shut down and moved to other countries, this takes many American people out of work. Companies are now also importing jobs. This is where employers hire people such as immigrants to work less than minimum wage. For that reason, many Americans are stuck with the other minimum wage, and low-paying jobs that barely get them through life. Because of this, many Americans are working full time jobs that are below the Federal poverty line. These types of people are often called the “working poor”. Due to this the working poor have to run to welfare. This affects all Americans because taxpayers are the ones paying for welfare. The more jobs that are taken…show more content…

These immigrates do not have any problems with there wages because they made little or less in their home country. In the past decade, “American jobs screamed out of the United States at an ever-accelerating rate of speed,” says Wooldridge, “While American workers stood in unemployment lines, major corporations insourced, outsourced and offshored jobs to Third World countries. Why? They could obtain labor for $1.00 an hour and sometimes less. Capitalism knows no loyalty to man, beast or country.” One example of a corporation exercising this scheme is Bank of America. This company cut 5,000 jobs, and sent 1,250 of them to India. The company has also announced that they would cut 12,000 in the next two years or so. General Electric has also sent jobs to India. The company has sent about 12,000 jobs to India.

Foreign workers cost less. Sometimes it costs a lot to move jobs overseas—for expenses like legal fees, training and security. But wages in many foreign countries are so much lower than wages here that the move usually pays for itself. The average computer programmer in Northern Virginia, for example, makes more than $50,000 a year. Compare that to a typical programmer in India, who earns less than $10,000 for the same work. The same is true for lots of different jobs in many different countries. (American Jobs Move Overseas).

     
There are Americans that work full-time at minimum wage and are still under the Federal poverty

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A manager at Barnes & Nobles told me that this was a great book because it shifted blame for the problems of the poor onto the poor, thus holding them accountable and providing room for personal responsibility. Hardly a compelling case for me! So for a long time, I didn’t read it. But now I have, and what the B&N guy said was a gross oversimplification and misreading. Rather, what Shipler does is link the formation and transmission of emotional and psychological problems to systemic problems, showing how they interplay to form patterns of poverty. I.e., growing up poor puts people at risk, while being white, coming from stable families, having good health, speaking English, and having role models are all things that can lessen risk, though even then it’s precarious. It’s not about personal responsibility: it’s about the formation of personal and political in each other. The writing and the stories are great. It’s such a good book that I wonder how some asshole like that B&N manager could come away from it with entirely the wrong conclusions.

Read Dec. 2007

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