In 2005, the global economy makes people move. They are part of a migrant job market within and between all nations. These children, women and men seek jobs because of poor work opportunities at home. Some call this freedom. It is not for them but good enough for other folks.
Consider some migrant laborers who travel the U.S. Mexican border. They have been meeting a new force there. It goes by the name of the Minuteman Project, comprised of volunteers. The MP’s mission is to defend the U.S. border. Soon the MP will expand its mission from intercepting foreign workers to slowing foreign capital. This money has been flooding into the U.S. below the political radar screen of public sentiment. The time for financial flood control is here, according to the MP. Its mission creep is striking fear into the hearts of overseas investors whose excess cash has been funding the American nation’s federal deficit.
Of course, mounting a financial defense of Uncle Sam won’t be easy. The MP must understand that. Taking on foreign labor is one thing. Confronting foreign capital is another. Foreigners who perform low-wage labor that profits U.S. employers from Wal-Mart to California agribusiness have names and faces. They breathe, eat, laugh and speak. By contrast, foreign lenders are faceless and nameless. Their surplus capital is mobile and invisible. Clearly, what we have is an “identity” issue.
Which brings us to the debt structure of the U.S. economy. One example is the federal government’s deficit spending under President George W. Bush. Driving it up is the bill to wage wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, $300 billion and counting. This is making some “conservative” groups such as the Concord Coalition quite queasy. In fact, the CC is aghast at Uncle Sam’s increased indebtedness, thanks to foreign lenders. Against this backdrop, one of the federal government’s biggest creditors is “communist” China. Its central bank is a big buyer of U.S. government bonds, as the MP knows and opposes. These U.S. patriots oppose godless communism in all its forms.
It will be wonderful to see the MP try to slow the flow of foreign funds into the federal treasury of the world’s greatest democracy. But it won’t be easy for the group. More Americans will be needed to undertake this patriotic course of action. But nobody ever said that financial patriotism was an afternoon at the beach with cold drinks and a large umbrella. The MP must understand that. We can only hope that such knowledge will inform the all-volunteer group as it moves to cut Americans’ reliance on foreign lenders.
If regulating undocumented workers is a sign of patriotism, then so is slowing the flow of foreign money into the U.S. The latter process is protecting U.S. borders as sure as the former. There’s just one question that I have for Congress and the White House in terms of the MP. In the future, how will the U.S. government fund wars to spread liberty in the lands of much energy such as Afghanistan, Iraq and Iran without loans from overseas creditors? After all, foreign capital can’t be conjured from thin air.
So I have free advice for the MP. Be careful what you wish for, patriots. Your cadres of eager volunteers must steel themselves for many challenges when confronting foreign capital and its main man in red, white and blue.
This duo is big and bad in many ways, not the least of which is the financial base of waging war for peace, endlessly. Who among us would have thought that the MP would push the envelope here?
Seth Sandronsky is a member of Peace Action and co-editor with Because People Matter, Sacramento’s progressive paper. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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