Special Labor Dia Edition

Workin' for the man

Dear Mexican: I'm a naturalized citizen born in Ciudad Juárez (the most dangerous city in the world, thanks to the drug cartels), but I work for la migra. I get a lot of shit from some of my family members because they feel I shouldn't be doing this job. I always tell them that it's better I got the job rather than some racist gabacho who might other wise "mistreat" the aliens that come to the country—particularly the ones that like to make menudo on Sundays. I know I wouldn't mistreat them. Should I quit my job and make my family happy, or keep my job and do it in a humane manner? —Migra Mexican

Dear Gabacho: I must've answered your family's question back in 2008, when someone called you and the 52 percent of wabs who make up the Border Patrol a bunch of hypocrites. My answer, then, was this: "It's easy for Mexicans to dismiss these agents as vendidos, but let's not pretend the U.S.–Mexico border is a playground on the level of Xochimilco. Lot of bad people inhabit la frontera—drug-runners, coyotes, Guatemalan aliens who invaded Mexico first before setting their beady eyes on the United States—and no one is better than a Mexican to deal with scum, mostly because we deal with it daily in the form of our governments. Besides, don't bash our Mexican migra—we all know those brown Border Patrol agents are Manchurian Mexicans waiting for Obama to become president so they can open the gates once and for all." I still stand by that sentiment (although Obama hasn't complied with his end of our Faustian pacto), but would ask you to be in the juego, not of the juego.

Dear Mexican: As you're probably well aware, most American conglomerates have set up shop south of the border. Without naming names, how is it that they get away with, in most cases, charging more for the same product, yet pay these employees a fifth of what the same employee makes doing the same job up north? Why doesn't Mexico say, "Hey, you want to sell products here for the same price or better that you sell it for back home? Pay the same wages you do up there." If Mexico were to force these companies into this agreement, there would no longer be the draw to narco-trafficking jobs that pay $400 American a week making human soup, ¿que no? Not to mention the fact that there wouldn't be eight people in a one-bedroom living illegally up there making $300 a week thinking they hit the lottery. Why is Mexico allowing itself to be bullied by its big next-door neighbor like this? —¡A La Mecha!

Dear Wab: On one issue and one issue only can Know Nothings and Aztlanistas agree, and that's the destruction the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and other neoliberal policies wrought on Mexico. Before its implementation, Mexico was largely a statist economy, with heavy subsidies and protections for industry and workers. That created a stagnant business environment, however, especially when compared to the free-market fustercluck we run up here, so Mexico's peso policies didn't stop its residents from going to el Norte. But once globalists on both side of the border (as usual, Canada played an inconsequential role) implemented NAFTA on January 1, 1994, the relaxed regulations (coupled with a devaluation of the peso) destroyed Mexico, unleashing the flood of migrants we have today. The problem with those maquiladoras you mention is that they're merely following the free market—they can pay less in Mexico and charge more for products than in the United States because of our uneven economies.

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