13 April 2017 The difficulty we are having finding ethical home repair contractors (Citizen vs Non-citizen employee hiring practices in Texas) and the Apathy Blitz (media)

12 April 2017 – I was thinking of my Grandma Schmidt when I drew this. I don’t have any pictures of her when she was a very young woman.

Good morning to you.  My brain is about mush right now but I wanted to stop in and say hello.  I did some looking this morning to try and find a carpenter to come out and repair our exterior wall and got discouraged.  After an exchange I had with someone in roofing yesterday, I realized getting this little job ethically done is going to be harder than I thought.  My discouragement stems from an issue I’ve brought up before about companies in Texas, large and small, that hire non-citizens to do jobs like we need done (usually heavy manual labor, construction, manufacturing and industrial work).  It’s not that I am racist.  People who know me, know that is certainly not the case.   I  don’t want to get services from businesses that hire non-citizens  because I care about the non-citizen workers!  From the experiences we’ve had so far living here….they can get really screwed over by the companies that hire them.  To me, the fact that businesses in Texas are being allowed to hire them and not get punished is the real crime to me!  What a double-standard!

I feel like people should be paid and treated fairly for the work they do.  If that means that  I as a consumer have to pay more to have a job done right then that’s what should happen.  If you buy cheap products that last about one washing or hire companies that perform cheap services – you deserve to get what you aren’t paying for.  Ultimately, you end up spending more money if you keep buying inferior goods and services.

I think people get desperate and are willing to lower their standards if that’s the only way to get something done.  Kyle and I are in this situation.  When you are trying to survive on a low-income salary, you do a lot of trade-off’s…..”well if I buy tires for the car, then we can’t afford to go get our eyes checked” kind of living.   Our wages and cost of living allowances not keeping up with inflation doesn’t help things either.  Saving money has become very difficult but we still try.

Kyle and I talk about these subjects a lot.

We believe that companies that are hiring non-citizens probably don’t want to hire citizens because citizens have expectations they don’t want to honor – it’s going to cut into their profit margins.  People who are citizens know about and usually expect job security, health and dental insurance,  life insurance, safety and protection on the job, paid sick days, paid leave which includes maternity leave, vacation time and or days off with pay.  In short….most US employees that are citizens have expectations of their employers that most non-citizens do not.  Most of them just don’t know they deserve better and or are too scared to ask!   A good company, in my opinion, when it’s doing well makes sure everyone in the company benefits not just the top brass of the outfit.  Most companies today, not just in America, don’t seem to be about sharing the prosperity.  They seem to be  all about profit and shareholders and the employees are just an means to an end.  I suspect that’s why we are seeing the virus of Right-to-Work States expanding and the deregulation of just about everything now.  I think this possibly also why we are seeing so many product recalls everywhere.  If you aren’t taking care of your employees they are going to give that back to you.  This can be deadly for consumers of things especially like food and vehicles.

Anyone else noticing the media blitz going right now?!

I feel like we are getting bombarded from every direction at once with stuff that is all important but almost impossible to keep track of it all.  I want to call  this digital war an “Apathy Blitz.”  It’s a tactic of just literally bombarding people with a nonstop series of often conflicting and misleading negative media which beats most people into Apathy…just not giving a fuck mostly.  Our media folks may not even mean to be doing this to us.  With how competitive and hungry most media outlets have to be today to acquire our attention and funding, that may be part of what’s going on too.  Most people I know don’t even look at the news anymore because it is so toxic and they would be right.  The only problem is when we tune out of what is going on, “people and things start doing things“….many of which will negatively impact us all.

For me,  it’s about finding a balance.

This is just a micro sample of the blitz  I’m talking about.  I understand if you skip  and or skim through this part.  I just wanted you to show you some of what stood out for me in today’s the “barrage”: 

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/us-airstrike-kills-18-allied-syrian-fighters-in-friendly-fire-incident/ – ties into what I talked about in my post yesterday! 

CBS News April 13, 2017, 10:26 AM

U.S. airstrike kills 18 allied Syrian fighters in friendly fire incident

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/devos-withdrawal-of-student-loan-memos-called-ridiculous/ar-BBzMi8r?OCID=ansmsnnews11 – making it yet harder for our kids

DeVos Withdrawal of Student Loan Memos Called ‘Ridiculous’

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/04/12/523603112/alabama-senate-says-church-can-start-its-own-police-force – what?! 


Church Can Start Its Own Police Force, Alabama Senate Says

April 12, 20172:54 PM ET

http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-north-carolina-same-sex-marriage-ban-20170412-story.html – bullies targeting the vulnerable again

After transgender bathroom battle, North Carolina looks to ban same-sex marriage

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/new-york-judge-sheila-abdus-salaam-dead_us_58eecffbe4b0b9e984893d8f – this is a heart-breaking and suspicious loss to me


04/13/2017 12:36 am ET | Updated 36 minutes ago

New York Mourns The Death Of Trailblazing Black Muslim Judge

Sheila Abdus-Salaam was the first African-American woman and Muslim to serve on the state’s highest court.

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/president-trump-reverses-campaign-positions-day/story?id=46772760 – this is not surprising

President Trump changes stance on 4 campaign positions in just 1 day

By Jordyn Phelps

Alexander Mallin

Apr 13, 2017, 10:47 AM ET

http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/white-house/trump-s-mar-lago-travel-triggers-cost-ethics-concerns-n743541 – but we have to slash and burn the EPA because it’s costing too much

Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Travel Triggers Cost and Ethics Concerns

by Ali Vitali , Gabe Gutierrez and Rich Gardella

http://www.npr.org/templates/transcript/transcript.php?storyId=523547441 – was the gassing of civilians in Syria a fabrication? I wouldn’t be surprised at this point!


< U.S., Russia Talks Try To Find A Path Forward After Syria Attack




5 comments on “13 April 2017 The difficulty we are having finding ethical home repair contractors (Citizen vs Non-citizen employee hiring practices in Texas) and the Apathy Blitz (media)

  1. It’s not non-citizens, Jackie, it’s individuals who, for the most part, entered this country legally, outstayed their visa terms, and currently have no documentation to remain here legally. They are, indeed, vulnerable to abuse by unethical employers, not because they don’t know better, but because staying in this country, even with the abuse, is preferable to being deported to where they came from. 😉 xoxoM

    • Thank you for this input Margarita – you are right. It’s so sad to think people have to choose between their abusers….which one is worse. Ugh! They need to make the path to US citizenship smoother and more expeditious if they are going to insist on literally using these populations in this way.

      • Yes. A good first step is to make applying for visas and immigration less confusing. While thorough vetting is desirable and appropriate, with all the visa options and regulations there are too many ways to game the system…such as it is. 😉 xoxoM

  2. When I was younger, I worked for many years in residential construction, so I’ve seen crews of undocumented workers doing all sorts of labor (primarily mason/brick laying, but also roofing, plumbing, and pouring concrete slabs. I have to tell you that, whatever corners the contractors may be cutting on the payroll-taxes side of the equation, I’ve never personally seen a problem with the quality of work. Frankly, where I have seen shoddy construction, it’s been at the hands of stoned white guys who were born and bred in the good-ol’ U. S. of A. The reality is, those folks, for the most part, know exactly what they are getting in to. In the few occasions I’ve seen where someone on one of these crews of undocumented workers got hurt, the boss/foreman was johnny-on-the-spot to get them medical treatment (there are lots of good liability reasons that a contractor would rather keep his workers on the healthy side).

    This is not to say that abuses never happen, I’m sure that they do. But if you’re really worried about poor quality of work, I’d pay more attention to the references provided then I would the ‘status’ of the guys on the crew, who are depending on that next job to feed their families.

    • Thanks for you input on this, I appreciate the insight. I don’t have a problem with the quality of work of undocumented folks and agree the only time stuff has been screwed up at our house it’s been a “white” guy who’s done it. We’ve had experience with that. What bothers me mostly is that these people are being punished and the companies hiring them, giving them incentive to even be in this country, are not. This is a double standard. I do not want work done at my place by “slaves” who may or may not get paid for their work. I personally want to live in a world where you can live wherever the hell you want to without passports and visa’s – a world of inclusion vs exclusion! Yeah, probably not in our lifetimes lol. Anyhew – thank you my friend.

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