Get Real: Do Filipino illegal aliens residing in the US really need Temporary Protected Status?

The Philippine government is appealing to the US government for a granting of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to hundreds of thousands of undocumented Filipino nationals illegally residing in the United States. The appeal builds upon the Philippines’ claim to being unable to fully recover from the devastation wrought by super-typhoon Haiyan (a.k.a. Yolanda) across its central provinces in November this year without such a grant. Up to 200,000 Filipinos currently located in the US reportedly stand to be eligible to avail of this concession.

“Placing the Philippines under TPS will allow eligible Filipinos to stay and work in the US in order for them to assist in the county’s continuing recovery efforts after Typhoon Yolanda that devastated Easter Visayas last month, killing more than 6,000 people and affecting more than 16 million,” Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario said.

Temporary Protected Status could be a boon to US illegal aliens like Jose Antonio Vargas.

Temporary Protected Status could be a boon to US illegal aliens like Jose Antonio Vargas.

According Section 244 of the United States Immigration and Nationality Act

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(1) In general.-The [US] Attorney General, after consultation with appropriate agencies of the Government, may designate any foreign state (or any part of such foreign state) under [Temporary Protected Status (TPS)] only if-


(B) the Attorney General finds that-

(i) there has been an earthquake, flood, drought, epidemic, or other environmental disaster in the state resulting in a substantial, but temporary, disruption of living conditions in the area affected,

(ii) the foreign state is unable, temporarily, to handle adequately the return to the state of aliens who are nationals of the state, and

(iii) the foreign state officially has requested designation under this subparagraph; or

(C) the Attorney General finds that there exist extraordinary and temporary conditions in the foreign state that prevent aliens who are nationals of the state from returning to the state in safety, unless the Attorney General finds that permitting the aliens to remain temporarily in the United States is contrary to the national interest of the United States.

But is the Philippines really lacking in sufficient resources to support the victims of Haiyan’s devastation?

Already, much of the rest of the country is gearing up (and spending big sums of money to do so) to celebrate the coming Christmas holidays. Evidence that there is enough disposable income to go around is abundant as malls, casinos, restaurants, and amusement facilities are lighting up in anticipation of the rush of consumption and household spending that usually marks this time of the year in the Philippines.

According to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), remittances sent by the country’s army of overseas foreign workers (OFWs) reportedly “surged to a record high in October” which means that the Philippine economy will be awash with cash and buzzing with economic activity over the next several months.

Personal remittances, which include cash and non-cash items sent home by Filipinos abroad rose 8.8 percent to $2.282 billion in October, also an all-time high. This brought the January to October level to $20.452 billion, 6.8 percent higher than last year’s level.

Last month, the central bank said cash remittances may surge in November and December following the destruction caused by Super Typhoon Yolanda.

This is consistent with earlier claims issued by the BSP that the impact on the economy of Typhoon Haiyan has been “contained”. According to BSP Deputy Governor Diwa Guinigundo, “remittances in November and December will post ‘stronger growth than in the previous months of 2013 to cover for the extra cost of rehabilitation’ in Yolanda-hit areas in the Visayas.” Other “analysts” also back this claim…

The projected increase “shields the economy from slow down since remittances provide for consumption spending,” which is one of the two key factors to Philippine growth other than services, said John Paolo Rivera, an independent consultant and former economist at De La Salle University (DLSU) in Manila, in an email over the weekend.

Indeed, the Philippines is seemingly in a good economic position and is touted as the emerging economic rockstar of Southeast Asia after posting 7.6 percent economic growth in the first half of the year — the “fastest” in the region.

The biggest Philippine cities are home to an increasingly affluent middle class and a small but powerful and wealthy elite class of big industrialists and business leaders. The awesome scale of the resources at the disposal of the Philippines’ economic elite is such as to attract the attention of big-time global luxury brands. Bloomberg reports that “Such is the wealth being generated in at least the upper echelons of Philippine society that Bayerische Motoren Werke AG in September opened its first Rolls-Royce showroom in Manila.” The same report also paints a pretty peachy picture of what lies ahead for the Philippines, putting all the worry around the challenges of rebuilding after the disaster in proper perspective…

The bank forecast that while the typhoon may cut full-year 2013 GDP growth to 6.9 percent from its earlier estimate of 7.1 percent, the nationwide impact won’t be long-lasting and the 2014 estimates should rise to 6 percent from 5.6 percent due to the boost from rebuilding.

Bloomberg also noted that the “history of comparable catastrophes shows that reconstruction can be a boost for developing nations.”

Awash in cash: Recently-opened Rolls Royce showroom in Manila

Awash in cash: Recently-opened Rolls Royce showroom in Manila

So there we have it. It seems the Philippines does not really need any further concessions from its former colonial master. It has an economy big enough and awash with enough cash to support any need for new employment and economic activity to fund disaster recovery. Perhaps if we start by scraping off all the hypocrisy that coats Philippine society’s quaint calls for “more support” for the victims of Typhoon Haiyan, we can find it in our faculties to be a bit more resourceful and more self-reliant in light of the vast resources that have always been at our disposal.

[Photo of Jose Antonio Vargas and Rolls Royce Philippines showroom courtesy TIME Magazine and PhilStar respectively.]

60 Replies to “Get Real: Do Filipino illegal aliens residing in the US really need Temporary Protected Status?”

  1. The answer is no.

    If there is more pride left in this country then I say no. Same goes to those OFWs who have committed crimes abroad and are now asking for help from the Philippine government.

    The Philippines has had enough shameful things already, I am almost ashamed to say I am a filipino.

    1. you have no right to say that “the philippines has had enough shameful things already” is the leader, those corrupt leadres are putting the philippines in shame, not the entire filipinos or the country in general…….we filipinos just need to contained and remove those politicians that are bringing havoc to our society….if you are really a filipino..then do your part as a citizen of the republic… that we can have a clean and honest government…

      1. @ rolly

        Who voted for these idiots anyway? It is the people who put this a-holes in power. I have tried so hard so many times, trying to talk people out of their sweet dreamland and I get told “nega”, “ampalaya”, “bitter” and “tumulong ka na lang”, “ikaw ba ano na ba nagawa mo”, “corrupt”, “tuta ni GMA”, “Marcos loyalist”, “hindi ka filipino” and a whole lot of other dumb and idiotic things.

        You see, rolly, the japanese, in a way to cope with such a big humiliation after WW2, accepted their shame and rebuilt their country from there. There is no pride in the Philippines as long as we cannot rise and show the world what we have done as a country, so far we have none. So quit it with the filipinos being a proud nation.

        FYI, I am a filipino, working my trade in the Philippines and abroad for decades now, honestly paying my taxes, trying to follow even the simplest traffic rule, talking to people, trying to make them see things in a different light, and more. What part are you talking about? You have to be clear about that “part”. How about you, what is your “part”? I am tired of people telling me to do my “part”.

      2. Filipinos have PLENTY to be ashamed of. Let me mention just the things that come to mind very quickly. Maguindanao massacre still not prosecuted, Marcoses in power now, Ruben Ecleo Jr. not in custody while still “hiding” right in his house in San Jose, Dinagat, aftermaths of both Sendong and Yolanda, Gloria Arroyo (GMA), Hacienda Luisita, Bus hostage debacle, piss poor schools, selling votes for a hundred pesos or even for a kg of rice, The PNP and AFP along with LTO, Chris Aquino…need I continue?

      3. Hello Rolly,

        Sorry but I disagree to your idea. it’s not just the leaders. It’s the filipinos in general who are creating problems and shame to the country. And note that politicians are filipinos too just like the people who voted them to be in their positions.

    2. with regards to ofw…mr. not make conclusion to the ofw who commited crimes dont knw what happen to them..what they pass through…or the treatment of their employers, the sacrifice they make…it is more a shame if you do nothing to help our country to is more a shame that instead of helping…we are fun and like criticizing the one who sacrifice everything for the good of our country…if you dont have a pride that left into yourself..den that’s your problem. anymore…you are the master of yourself..and don”st drag the ofw or my country in your self inflicted misery…

      1. I am also an OFW, and I know enough to say that about those people committing those crimes. When you are not in your country, it is your responsibility to know everything you can about the country you’re in and their culture and it would be safe to humble yourself and act as lower human being especially in the ME, just to avoid trouble. It doesn’t matter what circumstance they were/are in, the point is they have laws, you violate it, you pay for the consequence. They have their culture also, you go against it, you also pay for the consequence. If you have a problem with authority, it would be best you stay in the Philippines where going against the law is an everyday affair.

      2. “it is more a shame if you do nothing to help our country to prosper”

        At who’s expense? Just don’t do it at ours. It is really a shame that we Americans let Filipino government and illegal Filipinos take advantage of our country. We should stop rewarding bad behavior. If TPS get’s approved I will be ashamed as an American for letting others abuse us. We Americans also have pride and you have no right to abuse our good will.

        1. The USA already has 20 million illegal aliens. What is another couple of million Filipinos? Economic refugees are flooding the borders of many countries. Stop the “us against them” mentality. People are the same, everywhere; they are doing the best they can given the circumstances they find themselves in. The Philippines and the USA share a common history. The more links that connect the Philippines to the USA; the better. Filipino immigration should ease restrictions on American residents living in the country, to show reciprocal good will.

        2. “What is another couple of million Filipinos?”

          You sound like one those Filipinos who think Americans are “nice but stupid” and it is our fault that we let you take advantage of us.

          Rubbish. Just another underhanded excuse.

    3. Thank you for your honesty!!!

      Soo tired of the “POOR ME” attitude here.

      Today on Channel 9 News, your senators saying how bad is the U.S. That the U.S. only sends our junk weapons and help to the Philippines!?. If the U.S. is sooo bad, stop reaching for our so called, junk hand outs! Take back all 200,000+ illegal Phil “Aliens”, now hiding in the U.S., that your government is begging us to keep, because they say they cant afford to take back their own citizens!!!

      The average American taxpayer will “Thank You”. Tired of seeing the U.S., being used as the ATM Machine for every lazy corrupt country in the world! Our Tax Dollars need to go for our own Citizens—NOT TO COUNTRIES THAT ACT LIKE THEY HATE US!!!


  2. begging bowl and victim mentality rolled into one
    and as far as the govt is concerned the more ofw’s the higher the remittances.
    the creation of jobs at home as pnoy aquino promised, but naturally has not achieved would be a higher priority rather than again showing the country’s inability to solve anything without uncle sam’s help. and that extends to the large number of ‘free’ consultants being provided by the us govt – i think some even write aquinos speeches – and from corporates, particularly IBM and mckinsey consultants.

    1. libertas… It does not matter how robust the economy is. Aquino will never be able to create enough jobs. One Filipino baby is born every second. That is over 350,000 births per year. The balkanization of the world into nation states is contributing to the problem. Instead of fighting over the rapidly diminishing supply of resources; a global strategy should be implemented to limit the population and to care for all people; regardless of where they live.

  3. This tendency to exploit and milk-dry some benefactor’s kindness and compassion now comes so naturally to Pinoy society. Unfortunately, this current government reinforces such tendency even more. They make it appear as if it were a kind of achievement to be proud of—as if being a victim for life is a badge of honor they’ve long been dreaming of wearing.

    In actuality, the values that pinoy society claims to uphold oppose what it instinctively practices.

  4. Rolls Royce first produced a car in 1904 and turned up in the Philippines 109 years later. Better late then never.
    With one of the world’s lowest gdp per capita a measly 2,600 usd a year Rolls Royce will not be selling many cars in the Philippines.

    1. Actually, the the filipinos who can afford such luxuries do not need a showroom here in the Philippines. They can always buy it when they want it abroad, bring it in the country by greasing some hands and viola!

      Although things of this sort can be drummed up again by the family media and declare it as a sign of progress.

  5. I personally think it is just flat wrong and a very bad idea for the U.S. to give temporary protection status to any illegal immigrants regardless of what country they are from after all they are there illegally in the first place having to hide, be discrete, stay in shadows and skirting the immigration laws, rules and regulations and avoiding having to submit the required applications, documentation, pay the required fees and seek permission as other immigrants have done and as we U.S. citizens are expected and required to do when we visit, live and work in other foreign countries! I am all for helping folks out who are trying to help themselves and are seeking to do things the right way, the legal way who want to better themselves and do the hard work ,the sacrifice, the necessary actions to progress in positive ways to reach their goals and dreams of a better life, but if your going to try and be deceptive, dis-respect the laws of the country you are are trying to immigrate too, if you are taking advantage of the immigration system and basically trying to have a free ride without any consequences then I find it difficult to have much sympathy for you and you should be rounded up be given the chance to do this the right way and if you do not want to do that or can’t then the consequences of your illegal actions should be enforced and you should be arrested, deported back home to your own country and you should take some time to figure out how to do respect and honor another countries laws, rules and regulations and have to do things for yourself the right way! Then I am sure you might be more welcomed in other countries!

    Just dome links to information on how this Temporary protection Status is being used and abused like some welfare system for many immigrants to the U.S and especially those who are illegal:

    1. Ken…Your thinking on this matter is rigid, simplistic and not very practical. You seem more interested in protecting your own economic position of privilege; than you are in helping your human brothers and sisters. You have a “fortress” mentality. Your use of terms like “free ride” and “welfare system” reveal the actual subtext of your blog, which is: ” I’ve got mine. The hell with everyone else.”

      1. Funny you should say that, Sea Bee, since Philippine Laws protect its own “economic position of privilege”. Can you say “60-40”?

      2. Sea Bee,

        That assessment by Jetlag807 is spot on. It’s hypocritical of you to expect the US to bend over backwards to accommodate ILLEGAL FILIPINO migrants so that they can take money OUT OF AMERICA while Filipinos BAR the entrance of foreigners into the Philippine market under even LEGAL circumstances. The attitude YOU reveal is much worse. You just told the world: “I’ve got mine, NOW GIVE ME ALL OF YOURS!” WHAT RIGHT DO YOU HAVE TO EXPECT TO BE ENTITLED TO MONEY AND PRIVILEGE FOR FREE?

  6. the aquino administration says that one million filipinos would benefit from TPS.

    seems to me people should respect the laws of other countries even if there is no rule of law in their own, rather than going illegal and then using yolanda as an excuse.

    1. I think because filipinos are use to breaking laws in the Philippines and getting away with it so they think they could also do it in other countries.

      another thing to be ashamed of…

  7. I’m an immigrant living in the USA. I was born and raised in Hungary a former communist country. We were ruled by the Ottomans (Muslim Turks) for about 300 yrs. Our country was also devastated by the Mongols, Habsburgs than the Nazis followed by the Communist with 2 world wars between them and recently we were ruled by the Soviet Union. Yes, the soviet Union was our colonial rulers as oppose to you who who were ruled by the USA! We don’t use our tragic history as an excuse to get sympathy or hands out. We don’t come to the USA and become leeches by overstaying and become illegals taking jobs away from Americans and not paying taxes. Your government has a lot of nerve, shame on you Filipinos for not taking responsibility for yourself!

    1. Sadly, to some extent it really is a viable solution to have Filipinos migrate away from the Philippines.

      Filipinos have shown they can be better off by NOT being in their home country. I don’t mean the illegal kind of migration – that’s just plain foolhardy.

    2. Oh come on….Illegals do not take away jobs from Americans. Greedy Americans exploit illegals by hiring them below minimum wage and do not give benefits or job security. It is the employers like Agribusiness that create this underclass of undocumented workers. More jobs have been lost by shipping our industries overseas in order to swell the profit margins of corporations. Many of these industries make billions; yet pay no taxes. Why? Turning workers against each other is a smoke screen designed to keep people from seeing who their true oppressors are.

      1. Who are those agribusiness workers? Filipinos? Hell no! Filipinos in general have juicy jobs that Americans also could do. Filipinos speak English and gives them a huge advantage over South American Hispanics. You are not like Mexicans and other non English speaking Hispanics: you are directly stealing jobs away from Americans. You just hide behind other illegal immigrants using them like you are one of them. On top of that you are calling America the exploiter and who know what else. Filipinos like you are either confused or just looking for excuse.

        1. Why would a Filipino, or anyone for that matter, already in America ILLEGALLY be even remotely worthy of special status because of a weather event in The Philippines?

      2. That’s an overly emotional, populist argument utterly devoid of logic. You are promoting a twisted view of the labour situation in the US at the expense of demonizing anyone who engages in business. And you completely ignore the simple fact that THERE ARE MILLIONS of undocumented aliens in the United States. How can you be so obtuse not to recognise the obvious? That many people IS a strain on ANY system. And because companies are in business to make money you find it appropriate to condone criminal acts? That is arrant nonsense! It’s absurd, irresponsible and pin-headed! Try to find out what the real story is in the US before regurgitating populist drivel that has no basis in reality.

        1. “..emotional, populist argument”

          The opposite: I expect to be unpopular and rejected by overly emotional “commie” and “wiseguy” Filipinos.

        2. Johnny Saint…How is this for logic: If American business would stop hiring illegals; they would stop coming. However, the truth of the matter is that restaurant owners, landscape gardeners, house painters, garment manufacturers, farmers and numerous other businesses hire illegals because they are desperate and will work for less. I am not demonizing anyone. After the North American Free Trade Agreement (under Clinton); there was a rush for hundreds of factories to relocate south of the border in the newly established Maquiladora districts. Why did they do this? They did it to exploit Mexican workers and avoid environmental pollution standards.

        3. Sea Bee,

          Pardon me, but what exactly is that factoid — taken out of context — supposed to prove? That the US should allow its laws to be broken and accommodate millions of illegal immigrants? That isn’t a solution to anything. In fact, government inaction on the issue has caused considerable damage to America. Once again, you completely ignore any facts related to the effects of illegal immigration.

          “I am not demonizing anyone.”

          That’s disingenuous at best. Your whole argument is premised on a fallacious generalisation that businesses and their owners can’t wait to perpetrate their cruel, rapacious behaviour (followed by maniacal laughter) — fueled by unchecked greed — on an unsuspecting public. That is simply a denial of reality.

          So now it’s about NAFTA? Or revenge for implementing NAFTA in accordance with a treaty to which BOTH the United States AND Mexico were signatories? I don’t understand. I thought it was about the misguided, illogical position you’ve taken as a result of the compassion you feel for the poor immigrants whom you see as oppressed and in need of help.

          Here’s what Sea Bee’s populist rhetoric has accomplished: FEAR, IGNORANCE AND OUTRIGHT STUPIDITY. We are tempted to believe that American businesses flock to the Third World because they can’t wait to poison the water, pump ozone-depleting fumes into the atmosphere and force labourers to slave for 16-20 hours a day at slave wages while some hulking, sweaty neanderthal lurks in the background cracking a whip.

          Here’s what reality teaches us: ALL BUSINESSES are directed towards one goal — MAKING MONEY. PROFIT. That’s the plain and simple truth. Is everyone clear on that?

          That being said, it is no more good or bad for America to trade with within its borders than it is to trade with Canada or Mexico or the Philippines in pursuit of profit. The US trades with foreign countries because there are things which can be done there more efficiently (and consequently, more cheaply) than in the US and vice versa. This includes both trade in products AND labour (read “outsourcing”). The net effect is increased efficiencies all around. Prices of goods sold in the American market are lower. This also leads to savings for American businesses.

          For poor countries, if free trade agreements are executed properly, this translates to economic progress. The manufacturing and service industries in those countries expand and produce more wealth for the growing middle class.

          The dynamism of trade eventually creates more work (and wealth) than it destroys. It makes everyone richer in the long run because different people can focus on doing what they do best. Economists call it “comparative advantage.” Trade is a win-win situation both for individuals and between nations.

          As a consequence more free trade will eventually solve the immigration problem. By making poorer countries more prosperous, you eliminate the need to immigrate to seek employment opportunities in the US and/or Europe. The exact OPPOSITE of Sea Bee’s claim.

        4. NO, NO NO..that is not what is going on. The NAFTA agreement and the paying of bribes to congressional members to FUCK Unionized American workers out of there jobs by exporting jobs over-seas! as to the point you think people save money on the goods but NO, actually it is because the goods are bought into the country with no import tariff which allows the practice to continue! These corporations were made great by AMERICAN UNIONIZED WORKERS and now the greedy scumbags at the top have fucked the Middle-class in the USA out of THEIR FUCKIN JOBS/pensions and everything else.
          CASE IN POINT: GM was given $90 Billion($90,000,000,000.00, thatsa lotta zeroes buddy!) as a bailout and how did they SAY THANK YOU to the AMERICAN TAXPAYERS WHO BAILED THEM OUT? HUH?
          By building 1.5 million new cars at 6 new manufacturing and assembly plants in FUCKIN CHINA. As Detroit is thrown into bankruptcy and hard-working citizens are going to fucked out of their pensions that were supposed to be guaranteed by the state(and with a sweep of a pen the Gov. now says they are not) and not a single United Auto worker will get paid to make anything inside those new plants.THOSE SHOULD BE U.A>W> JOBS AND THOSE CARS SHOULD BE MADE IN DETROIT,MI.,USA GOD DAMMIT!
          YOU THINK YOU KNOW what is going on in the USA, but you have no clue! and YOU should just STFU coz you sound like a know nothing idiot which is exactly what you are!You do not have it all figured out as if you think you do, GET A CLUE, then get real about a country you MIGHT KNOW something about…the Fail-ippines!

        5. JtJerzy,

          Those are very popular views you posted. They are also VERY WRONG.

          (And moving quite a bit off topic from the protected immigrant status that is the topic of this article.)

          Let’s put this in perspective.

          You said that NAFTA was the result of backroom deals between Pres. Clinton and the US Congress. True enough. When NAFTA passed in 1993, numerous press reports documented deals — many unrelated to NAFTA — that the Clinton Administration had made with individual Members of Congress and groups of Members to obtain their votes to pass NAFTA. How is this particularly malicious compared to the crafting of other legislation? It should be remembered that this is the same process that got you the Civil Rights Act in 1964. Just before NAFTA was passed, political wheeling and dealing also produced the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990 to ensure that more disabled Americans would get jobs. It is the nature of democracy that the various interests are represented, issues debated, with the ultimate goal of resolving matters that satisfy everyone concerned in a manner that serves the common good.

          You mentioned that the objective of NAFTA was to export jobs to the Third World because of cheap labour costs. That seems logical. Intuition — FEAR — tells us that companies will flock to places where they will find the world’s lowest-paid workers. During the 1992 Presidential elections, Ross Perot famously warned the electorate about the “giant sucking sound of jobs being pulled out” of the US. Perot predicted that the US market would lose 5 million jobs to Mexico. At the time that was 4% of total US employment. THIS NEVER HAPPENED. Mexico entered a recession and the US entered a period of prosperity that lasted into the early 21st century. True, American workers were displaced by low-cost Mexican imports. But research showed it was more like 2,000 per month. Even if we assume that this statistic persists into 2013, that would mean the US lost — at most — 248,000 jobs since 1993. Less than 5% of Ross Perot’s figure.

          With regards to NAFTA’s actual effects on the economy — eliminating tariffs reduced inflation by decreasing the costs of imports. Reducing the cost of trade spurred investment and growth especially for small businesses. Trade between the NAFTA signatories more than quadrupled, from US$297 billion in 1993 to US$1.6 trillion in 2009.

          In the US, more jobs were lost due to the financial crisis in 2008-2009 than NAFTA. In fact the adverse effects were more pronounced in the Mexican job market. Mexico lost 1.3 million farm jobs. The 2002 Farm Bill subsidized US agribusiness by as much as 40% of net farm income. When NAFTA removed tariffs, corn and other grains were exported to Mexico below cost. Rural Mexican farmers could not compete.

          Contrary to your claims that removing import tariffs under NAFTA harms the US economy, federal government subsidies that gave Americans an unfair advantage in the market. This was compounded by tariffs imposed by President George W. Bush on items such as imported steel and President Obama’s “Buy American Provision” in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. What this protectionist stance does is send a message to the world that the US is just looking after itself and that it is not concerned with fulfilling its commitments to world trade. America HARMS its trading partners; NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND.

          Another popular, but erroneous, claim you make is that “corporations were made great by AMERICAN UNIONIZED WORKERS.” Even a quick glance at reality tells us that companies are better off because of the prosperity of markets, NOT BECAUSE OF UNIONS. And CEO decisions ARE largely responsible for whether a business is profitable. Look at the pay scales in the US: 95% of American workers make MORE than the mandated minimum wage. It’s NOT because of labour laws or union lobbies or even because the owners are unusually generous. The simple fact is that COMPETITION compels successful businesses to offer higher wages and/or better working conditions to attract better workers.

          If companies move jobs overseas, its because the business environment is simply no longer conducive to making a profit. Minimum wages get too high to compete or taxes and regulations become too onerous to operate efficiently. The culprit? LABOUR UNIONS.

          Once, unions helped advance working conditions. That was a good thing. But now, union work rules hurt workers; they impede business growth by making companies less flexible. And their adherence to vested interests have destroyed several US companies by lobbying for and getting laws passed that favour the unions, NOT THE WORKERS. As a result, they cause business to atrophy. A nonunion Toyota still enjoys top sales in the US and continues to grow, while GM shrank. Southwest Airlines is now the largest airline in the US. Budget carrier JetBlue clears nearly US$100 million a year. On the other hand, both TWA and Pan Am are no longer in business. Union rules helped these two carriers all the way into bankruptcy and their workers into unemployment.

          If anyone has “fucked the Middle-class in the USA out of THEIR FUCKIN JOBS/pensions and everything else” look to your union leaders. Ask them where exactly the dues are going and why they aren’t doing a better job at representing workers’ interests. It seems very few are still fooled by the labour union scam — membership has fallen to a mere 8 percent in the private sector.

          Regarding the claim that GM received US$90 billion in bailout money. That is a gross error that is nowhere near the truth. I’ll assume you were misinformed. Otherwise it means you are lying to advance an agenda.

          In 2008, the US auto industry, specifically the big three — GM, Chrysler, and Ford — asked Congress for a US$50 billion bailout to avoid bankruptcy and the layoff of some 3 million workers. Ford didn’t actually need the money, but asked to be included anyway to avoid having to compete with what would essentially be subsidised companies. Five years later, the total amount spent on the automotive industry bailout has topped off at around US$80 billion. NOT the US$90 billion for one company as was previously claimed.

          The bulk of the money did go to GM — US$51.03 billion. It repaid US$23.1 billion of the money it got from the US Treasury, including all of its outstanding loans. Total cost to the US taxpayer: US$10.4 billion. In November 2013, the U.S. Treasury announced it would sell its remaining 31.1 million shares. It had already gotten back US$37.2 billion by selling its ownership in GM.

          Chrysler filed for bankruptcy in 2009. To its credit, in May 2011, the company repaid US$11.2 billion of its outstanding US$12.5 billion in loans SIX YEARS AHEAD of schedule. Total cost to taxpayers from the bailout was US$1.3 billion. Today, Italian automaker Fiat has majority ownership (60%) of Chrysler. By next year, Fiat hopes to buy out UAW’s 40% stake in the company in order to merge the two brands.

          Ford used its US$5.9 billion loan to convert two truck plants to small-car production and to develop more fuel-efficient vehicles. Ford says it will spend US$14 billion over the next seven years on advanced-technology vehicles.

          Contrary to what you claim, JtJerzy, the auto industry DID say “thank you” to the American taxpayer. They have started paying back their loans. As of the end of October 2013, Treasury has recovered US$54.6 billion of the money loaned out. Between the two of them, 340,000 jobs were created by GM and Chrysler since June 2009, when they emerged from bankruptcy. In fact, even with unusually high unemployment, America still created more than a million new jobs. The only reason jobless rate stayed high through 2012-2013 is that the world economy still remains soft and because the population growth was even greater.

          JtJerzy also laments the decline and bankruptcy of Detroit. It’s always tragic when people lose jobs and can’t find comparable work. The reality is that this isn’t a new phenomenon that came out of the 2008-2009 financial crisis.

          The auto industry and Detroit had been faltering for DECADES. The problems you see plaguing the city — drugs, crime and violence — were a problem going back to the 1980s. The big three automakers brought themselves to near-bankruptcy largely because, as companies, they lost their competitive edge in the global market. They’d become less and less efficient. To a great extent this stagnation in what was once the premier employer in Michigan was caused by — you guessed it! — UNIONS.

          Rigid union work rules made it impossible for companies to improve production performance beyond a certain level. Expensive contracts for union benefits, pensions and the like priced them out of competition. You can condemn the state and your employer for denying the entitlements you think you should receive, but the reality is that these supposed “gains” come at others’ expense. Its because unionised companies were allowed all these entitlements that the companies they worked for fell into bankruptcy. That’s the natural consequence of living in a culture of dependency and a dole-out mentality.

          It is interesting to note that non-union automakers such as Honda and Toyota were in far better shape during the recession and were expanding and upgrading their US factories as well as hiring more workers.

          JtJerzy, what I am certain of is that you blame a lot of America’s economic problems on foreigners and some malevolent conspiracy between big business and government.

          In reality the causes are obvious and easily verifiable. This is Economics 101. When the business environment is no longer competitive or profitable, companies will have to change their business model or they won’t survive. Simple. If unions make working conditions untenable, employers will find the best workers who can excel at their jobs. Simple.

          The sad part of it is that while everyone else in the world is moving on towards prosperity you and the rest of the clueless dole-out junkies will still be wringing their hands, complaining to the union rep wearing the US$3,000 suit that you haven’t received your monthly food stamp allocation. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. Much of what you wrote was either taken out of context or completely erroneous. The rest consisted of personal attacks and profanity. No substance there.

        6. Saint, YOU SEE what YOU want to see. The UNIONS are not the problem..far from it.

          Taking a tax-payer bailout, brought about by crooked bookkeeping, and using it to fuck the UAW out of jobs they deserve, is not saying THANK YOU, it is ECONOMIC TREASON! Building 6 new manufacturing facilitities where not a single AMERICAN will work is making use of the money given to them by the tax-pYERS and then showing what POS they are as DETROIT dies!

          You think you know ECONOMICS 101, mabbe you do,its iffy….BUT one thing is for sure you know nothing when it comes to the USA and ,for a tiny example, how much labor costs per unit, it is less than 10% per vehicle. a thriving middle class is what the USA needs…badly! and sadly all it is getting dicks up the ass from ingrate corporations that lie out of both sides of their mouth.

          YOU THINK YOU KNOW, and from what I see, you know NOTHING! all that long winded response over what NAFTA being good for the USA,LOL! tell that shit to a former union worker at GM/FORD/KODAK or any other coprporation that has shifted its jobs outside the border and then the same corporsation use the USA military to fight their wars for them and bankrupt the country so they cant pay the peoples pensions…that is another can of worms I am sure you have little understanding of as well.

          IGNORANCE is bliss, so keep enjoying it!

        7. HOLY CHIT SAINT, You sight what Perot said in 1993 and act AS IF THAT IS THE TRUTH? U A-HOLE, NAFTA has seen 40 MILLION AMERICAN MANUFACTURING jobs leave the county, not 248,000 as YOU suggest.

          YOU are a JACKASS of the highest order, have NO CLUE about what you are talking about and just because your country is a ‘NEVER WAS”, there are still U.S. citizens who do not want our country to be a has been because politicians sold all of jobs and then got ‘we the people’ to pay for the corporations wars that have led us to bankruptcy.

          YOUR A JACKASS, know nothing LOSER! U see what U want 2 see and then make up the rest and see it as the truth, no wonder people the world over have such low opinions of Filipino’s….its because of bull-shit artisists like you!

          if the Philippines had 20 million undocumented Chinamen in their country? WAR would be declared. U really are a self obsessed shit-head, so much so that its funny!

      3. SeaBee, Illegals are taking American jobs, but they don’t just cross the border and end up in a good job. First they do a job such as mowing lawns or digging ditches by hand where they may or may not be exploited. They save up a few hundred bucks, then they buy some docs… green card, SSN, etc. After they have these documents, then they apply for a better job.

        The unions have absolutely no problem hiring known illegals as long as they have papers. In fact, The laborers union in Reno goes out of their way to recruit Hispanics by having booths at festivals staffed by Spanish speaking union reps. I spent two years on an out of work list due to these illegals not taking American’s jobs.

        Statistically, once an illegal becomes legal they vote the democratic ticket, which is good for those attempting to change the demographics of the electorate. If this does not stop soon, there will be a one party system in the US. All they need is 51% to nullify the other party, and they are close.

        1. Johnny Saint…. I would like to believe what you are saying about free trade being a win-win situation for everyone. However, I do not see it. American wages and employment opportunities have plummeted. Business profits have sky rocketed. There is a deepening divide between the rich and poor and the middle class is under threat. Corporations like Apple build all their products in China; yet their primary market is in the United States. Are you telling me that Apple cannot afford to pay its workers a living wage? Is it possible to make a profit without exploiting people or degrading the environment?

        2. Sea Bee,

          You are correct in observing that intergenerational social mobility in the United States has diminished over the years. The “American dream” has always been about the equality of opportunity — i.e. as long as people work hard and do their best, they and their children have a fair shot at getting ahead, that you can become wealthy if you play by the rules. The truth is, while there are many individual success stories in the US, it is equally true that their elites have been gaming the political system to protect their positions and transmitting these advantages to their children. This creates a widening gap between an oligarchical minority and the rest of America.

          Case in point: the financial crisis of 2008-2009. This laid bare the collusion between the financial services sector and many high ranking members of the US government, most notably in the Obama and Clinton administrations. CITIGROUP officials in particular used their influence with Presidents Obama and Clinton to secure financial bailouts to save them from bankruptcy. This allowed them to engage in increasingly risky — toxic — investments that eventually led to the collapse in the housing market. Had this collusion been checked from the beginning and CITIGROUP allowed to fail, we would not be suffering through the worst recession since the 1930s. That “wages and employment opportunities have plummeted” in recent history can be traced directly to this singular event — the 2008-2009 financial crash.

          Your observation, however, that business profits have sky rocketed is another generalisation that grossly misinterprets what is actually happening in the United States and Europe. Can you identify exactly who these businesses are that have reported record growth? CITIGROUP and AIG cannot be counted on that list. They received bailout money when they should have been filing for bankruptcy. Any “profits” they may have incurred resulted from the American taxpayer, not sound business strategy. The same goes for the auto industry whose unions lobbied for and received a massive infusion of cash from President Bush which was continued under President Obama. Regardless of what Obama propagandists claim, companies in the US — especially small and medium sized businesses — are struggling.

          None of this is a result of American companies deciding to perpetrate some scam on their workers or the defraud the public. It arose because certain elites and vested interests colluded with government to manipulate American political culture and the free market economy that was working fine without intervention.

          On the issue of China being the world’s “sweatshop” — as I stated previously, there is nothing wrong with trading with other countries in products or labour in pursuit of profit. If the US wanted to bring back manufacturing jobs to the homeland, all it has to do is make the business climate at home more agreeable.

          You asked the question whether or not a company like Apple is incapable of paying a “living wage.” That question is rooted in another fallacy based on ignorance of how markets actually function: the belief that employers set wages arbitrarily. That false assumption is disproved by the fact that although employers may want to pay as little as possible, market conditions will temper how much they will actually pay. If an employer is stupid enough to insist on paying low wages or poor working conditions, he will lose employees to competitors who pay market wages. Worker compensation is determined by the supply of, and demand for, workers. And that pay DOES NOT FALL INTO ANY LEGALLY ALLOWED MINIMUM.

          The reality is that government mandating a minimum wage does little other than harm the economy. In the first place, a worker who is worth US$7.25 an hour (the current US minimum wage) does not automatically become worth US$10.10 simply because Pres. Obama wants to pass a law saying so. The real consequences are that businesses suffer. People get cut because the company can no longer pay the minimum wage. The company drops their expansion plans because the money will now be needed to pay the new minimum. Another chooses to close because they can’t afford to pay higher wages. And still others who have the opportunity will outsource the jobs that would have gone to US workers to China and Third World countries like the Philippines. Not because they can’t afford to stay in the US but because staying would make them less efficient and, ultimately, less profitable.

          But, like you, most people fail to see the obvious. They only see the easy things — the giddiness from the short-term gain that a slightly larger paycheck will produce. Rarely do they see the losses or the fact that higher wages also bumps you up into a higher tax bracket where government takes a larger chunk of your earnings.

          “Is it possible to make a profit without exploiting people or degrading the environment?”

          Another question predicated on the ludicrous assumption that the primary goal of business is to perpetrate slavery and destroy the planet. (Have you been worshiping at the feet of Al Gore?) You need to educate yourself on the realities of business and development instead of relying on regurgitating lies from the “occupy-Wall-Street” slacker crowd. Even Bono realised the “evil capitalist” image was a lie. Until then, suffice it to say that your intuition about the way the world works is completely wrong despite the fact that it seems to be confirmed by scientifically illiterate slack-tivists and underachieving rock-and-roll politicians like Barrack Obama. Keep these things in mind: Competition in a free market forces a company to create the best standards for itself in order for it to be able to thrive. Furthermore, businesses must treat workers well in order to continue making a profit. Adhering to the best business standards and cultivating the best working environment in turn allow a company to be more competitive and most profitable.

        3. @ SEa Bee, ask the know-it-all Saint where ur nickname comes from and before he looks it up on wiki-whatever. I know, but wont give the answer. He is not an AMERICAN and just because he knows a few flips who have gone their he and they know nothing of the struggles on the people since the countries inception.
          he should stick to what he has a shot at knowing, the fail-ippines, and STOP sounding off about what he knows nothing about, THE USA!
          do not even respond to his idiocy and let his fellows, who think he knows something, follow his dumb ass!

    3. @ Attila

      Remember ZsaZsa Gabor? That freaking
      professional career gold digger, a leech
      who prostituted herself and f**ked every big guy in Hollywood to get ahead…was a freaking “Hungarian”. How many ZsaZsa Gabors from Hungary are there that roam the dark streets of Hollywood, NY or Las Vegas? Look at yourself, you little Hungarian freak before you blurt out your f**king Hungarian pride.

      BTW, my wife’s friend got married to a guy from your f**king country. The guy is
      unskilled, only does seasonal job, lazy drunkard and BTW illegal. Thanks to a Filipino…this Hungarian bum is now legal
      and driving a BMW. What a leech.

      1. Krokodil:
        What a desperado you are! Your comment speaks volumes about the mindset of the many Filipino men I had the luck to know. Where did ZsaZsa Padilla got her name from? Why would anyone want that name?

  8. Well, seeing how the funds for the recovery are being stolen/mis-used/under-utilized, YES they need the temporary protected status. Millions of Meh-hee-cans are dragging the wages of American citizens down the toilet, so a few hundred thousand more Filipino’s really are not going to make much of a difference, plus they had no plans on leaving anyway and don’t have the plane fare either, do they?

  9. Here’s how I see it… If a Filipino is in the US on a Tourist or otherwise temporary and legal visa status and that person/s resides in one of the affected areas of STY Haiyan (Yolanda), then YES, give them an extension. However, It does not make sense to grant blanket amnesty to any Filipino, especially if they are 1) NOT from one of the affected areas and 2) are in fact in the US illegally. Call me insensitive or callous but, considering the shameful manner in which we (foreigners) are treated here by your immigration bureau, I thinks its time you folks get a dose of your own medicine.

    1. I agree with every word you said and yesterday while you were making this post I was at the BI where I had been made to pay an extra fee in order to be allowed to stay while meeting NEW requirements recently created by BI so I can process my 13 a (married) visa.

  10. It is like a government of a foreign country, asking our country, to violate its own LAW. To accomodate the distinctive traits of Filipinos, to sneak in the good old U.S.A.

    Undocumented aliens are not allowed to work. If they are working, and caught, they will be deported. Americans are outraged of these undocumented alens, because, they take their jobs.
    Anyway, there are enough TNTs (tago ng tago) Filipinos in the U.S. And, asking the U.S. to give immigration status to these TNTs is laughable. I sympathize with these people, but let us learn to follow other countrys’ laws.

  11. In cyprus many filipina maids went illegal, usually stealing any valuables from their employer before leaving and then working as prostitites in nicosia/limassol.
    If caught, a free plane ride home to philippines, and then easy enough to get a passport in another name and return, or try same trick in another country.

  12. I am not sure how long it took for the people of New Orleans to recover from the devastation bought about by Typhoon Katrina, but from what I remembered, it took them quite a while and by the way, this is America- The United States of America. Typhoon Haiyan was more stronger and more destructive than Typhoon Katrina and you expect a Third World country to stand on its own without any help from other countries. Any help would benefit the country and now knowing that most of the Aids given were being hidden and never made it to the real victims. It is the Filipino people who are suffering right now and they can’t depend on their country to help them. Like I said, Any help would help. To quote on a comment made here earlier about illegals taking away American jobs. Talk to these big corporations who try to make the most profit. Americans are being paid 11USD per hour for a job that Filipinos did for 450USD/month. I understand if these Filipinos want to leave their country. Most of them makes less than 400USD a month and the cost of living is real high. An empty stomach does push you to dream big and if that dream materializes by being an illegal in the US then why not, as long as you are not hurting anybody. And please do not tell me that illegals are hurting the economy, watch ” the inside job” and you will know what happened to the US economy or even the world economy because of what these big corporations did.

  13. Every blue moon the press will announce that the PBI has picked up overstayers and deported them so whats the problem…LOL wow other countries love to pick on the US and their tough laws but hey “Do onto others as they do to you”, it’s time to purge all illegals not just Mexicans and Latin Americans.

  14. @libertas: You said, “One Filipino baby is born every second. That is over 350,000 births per year.” You must have gone to a Philippine school if that is the extent of your math skills. At that rate there would be 31,536,000 new babies (NOT 350,000) every year and if you add that to the current 110,000,000 and even if the number of babies never rose past “one…a second” the population of the country would in less than 3 years.

    1. oxford actually, and we usually took note of who was the author.
      try reading again, idiot, and address your remarks to the appropriate person

      1. If you went to Oxford why do you think that 1 baby born every second only amounts to 350,000 a year? I corrected my typo, but now all you do is say you went to Oxford?

        Do your arithmetic.
        1 day has 86,400 seconds X
        365 days = 31,536,000 babies a year at your “one Filipino born every second” bogus statement.

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