Friday, May 29, 2020


Kudlow: ‘We Probably Haven’t Peaked in Unemployment’


Friday on Fox News, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow warned unemployment news was to get worse before it gets better due to the economic downturn resulting from the coronavirus pandemic.
Kudlow, however, said there were other positive signs in the economy offering reasons for optimism.
“You know, the things are looking better, OK?” he said. “Now, we are still in the pandemic contraction. We probably haven’t peaked in unemployment, and the numbers coming in the weeks ahead are going to be very poor here in the second quarter. It’s a lot of hardship, a lot of heartbreak, OK, a lot of anxiety, so it certainly isn’t over. But, but, but, but I will say this. The virus is flattening and coming downward. The openings are coming across the country. Businesses are opening. New business applications are opening. There’s kind of a list, Steve, of all the – you know, I call them glimmers of hope and growth. Cars are driving more. Gasoline prices are up. The Apple Mobility Index is up.”
“We’re even seeing on the unemployment claims, which is a terrible number – close to 40 million – but it is slowing in its increase,” Kudlow continued. “So there’s some hopeful signs, and I think we’re going to move strong into the second half of the year with perhaps as much as 20 percent economic growth. We’ll talk about this with the business leaders and next steps on economic policy. You know, we’ve gone through the liquidity phase. Now we’re in the reopening phase. I think the next phase has to go back to old fashion Trumponomics — cutting taxes, deregulating, fair trade deals, things that grew the economy rapidly in the first three years plus and things that can grow the economy rapidly in the second half and onto next year. The president rebuilt the economy. He can do it a second time. We’ll have this whole conversation with the CEOs and the others.”
Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor

American ruling class exploits the pandemic to escalate assault on jobs and wages

29 May 2020
Another 2.1 million workers in the United States filed for unemployment benefits last week, according to the US Labor Department. This brings the total number of workers filing for jobless benefits to 40.8 million in the ten weeks since the pandemic led to the closure of much of the country’s economic activity in mid-March.
This number, which substantially understates the real scale of joblessness, is still a shocking 24.7 percent of the country’s labor force of 164.5 million people. Economists expect that May’s official unemployment rate, which will be released next Friday, will hit 20 percent, up from 14.7 percent in April.
Estimates of the real jobless rate exceed the historic record of 24.9 percent set in 1933 during the depths of the Great Depression. Millions of jobless workers are not counted in the official toll because they are undocumented immigrants, self-employed or so-called gig workers. Others not counted include those working part-time jobs and those who have given up looking for non-existent jobs. In addition, millions are not counted as unemployed because overwhelmed state agencies have not processed their claims, depriving them of any jobless benefits.
A woman carries a box of food away as hundreds others impacted by the COVID-19 virus outbreak wait in line at a Salvation Army center in Chelsea, Mass. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Nevertheless, several states have staggering official jobless levels, including Washington (31.2 percent), Nevada (26.7), Florida (25.0), Hawaii (23.4), Michigan (23.1), California (20.6) and New York (19.9).
According to a University of Chicago report, 42 percent of the jobs that have been lost will never return. Major corporations are using the pandemic to accelerate restructuring plans drawn up long before the present crisis.
This week, Boeing announced it will cut 13,000 jobs, mostly in the US but also in Canada, Australia and New Zealand. American Airlines, which got a hefty portion of the $50 billion government bailout of the airlines, supposedly to retain employees, will slash 5,000 jobs, or 30 percent of its workforce.
This is part of a global trend. After receiving a multi-billion-dollar bailout from the French government, the Renault-Nissan auto alliance has released plans to close factories in France, Spain and other countries and slash more than 20,000 jobs. German auto supplier ZF Friedrichshafen plans to cut up to 15,000 jobs, or around 10 percent of its workforce, by 2025, with half the cuts in Germany.
After a decade of declining real incomes for workers, those returning to work are now facing the prospect of a new round of wage and benefit cuts. A Bloomberg News report cited the comments of Bruce Fallick, an economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, who said the circumstances of a public-health crisis probably make pay cuts more palatable to workers than they would normally be—at least initially.
Wage-cutting will hit every sector of workers, from nurses, grocery, delivery and other essential workers the corporate media has hailed as “heroes,” to office workers at Google, Facebook, Twitter, JPMorgan Chase, Walmart and other companies that are extending their work-from-home policies.
“Once people work from home, there will be an employment arbitrage,” Forbes recently noted, as companies “decide that a person working at home in Montana has the same skills as someone in Chicago, but will take a much lower salary. It will be hard for employees to negotiate for raises, as management will believe that they could easily find a replacement somewhere else within the United States or abroad.”
Meanwhile, corporations that have been handed billions of dollars by the federal government are proceeding to turn the bailout money over to their executives and investors.
In the name of “equal sacrifice,” major corporations have announced cuts to the base salaries of their chief executives. This is nothing but show, however. Base salaries account for only a tenth of the median pay of chief executives at the largest 500 US companies, with the bulk coming from stock awards.
Based on an examination of regulatory findings, Reuters found that scores of companies, including Uber, Delta Air Lines and Hilton hotels, had already made or were considering changes to pay plans to shield top executives from the economic fallout of the pandemic, even as profits plummeted and the companies slashed thousands of jobs.
Reuters reported that Sonic Automotive, which runs nearly 100 car dealerships, “changed its executive compensation plan from awarding stock based on performance to allowing executives to buy company stock, starting in 2021, at the depressed prices that shares hit on April 9 of this year. Their value has risen 67 percent since April 10, as a result of the stock market bubble produced by the Federal Reserve’s intervention and massive government stimulus spending. This has happened as sales fell about 40 percent year-on-year since the start of the pandemic, and the company furloughed or laid off 3,000 workers.”
Since the unanimous passage by the Democrats and Republicans of the CARES Act in late March, which authorized the US Treasury to spend trillions of dollars to take over the bad debts of banks and corporations, stocks have shot up by more than 35 percent. They are now just 10 percent below the record highs before the pandemic.
In the two months since Trump signed the CARES Act on March 27, the US death toll from COVID-19 has risen from 1,700 to over 103,000. Tens of millions have lost their jobs and are lining up for food assistance and face eviction as temporary moratoriums are lifted. During the same period, America’s billionaires have seen their net worth rise by $434 billion.
The ruling classes in every country are pursuing a homicidal policy of forcing workers back to unsafe workplaces even as the pandemic continues to spread, overwhelming new areas of the US and producing new nightmares in Mexico, Brazil, India and other countries. In every country, the capitalist governments are seeking to use economic pressure to force workers back, with Trump preparing to replace the $600 weekly supplement to unemployment benefits with a temporary $450 a week “back to work” bonus.
For the ruling class, workers are nothing more than “our human capital stock,” as Trump’s senior economic adviser Kevin Hassett said last week, to be herded back to work to produce the profits necessary to pay for the bailout of the rich.
But workers are not cattle. Prior to the pandemic, there was a major growth of social struggle and political radicalization of the working class in every country. In the US, the number of workers engaged in major strikes reached the highest levels in decades. The entire policy of the ruling class in response to the pandemic will produce a vast expansion of class conflict.
Workers must reject the false choice between their lives and their livelihoods. The fight against both the pandemic and the social catastrophe facing the working class is a fight against the financial oligarchy and the capitalist system. It is the fight for socialism.

Experts: Donald Trump Can Choke Silicon Valley’s Foreign Labor Pipeline

Yuri Arcurs E/Getty Images

President Donald Trump can leverage his control of Silicon Valley’s preferred pipeline of cheap, compliant H-1B visa workers to curb censorship on social media, say experts on immigration policy.
“That is a powerful position to be in,” said Kevin Lynn, founder of U.S. Tech Workers. “What he can do is turn on and turn off the flow of [visa worker] labor into these companies … This gives him an awful lot of control.”
“If he were smart, he would think of that,” said Marie Larson, one of the co-founders of American Workers Coalition. The coalition advocates against the various visa workers programs which provide roughly 1.3 million foreign employees for Fortune 500 companies, including the tech sector. But, she added, “Our main issue is the [impact of the] foreign worker programs. … [and] he’s really skirting that issue.”
Multiple websites show how Google, Facebook, and Twitter use the visa worker pipelines to fill up a wide range of starter and mid-career jobs with compliant foreigners instead of innovative American professionals.
But the President has legal authority who can enter the country, so he can disrupt or cut that pipeline. He can use his bully pulpit to showcase the unpopularity of the many visa programs during the 2020 election.
The major Valley executives usually pay good wages to their foreign H-1Bs because they prefer foreign workers for management reasons:
The foreign workers are compliant and hard-working because they are largely unprotected by U.S. workplace laws. For example, they can be deported to their poor homelands by a manager’s signature.
Several major Valley companies were sued in the 2000s for operating an illegal “no-poaching” policy, in which the companies protected their secrets and suppressed salaries by promising to not hire employees from each other. The H-1B workforce allows executives to achieve that goal legally because the H-1Bs are locked into their jobs as they wait years to get employer-sponsored green cards.
U.S. executives use the H-IBs to avoid creating a U.S. workforce of innovative American graduates who argue back, quit, and set up rival companies.
The vast majority of the Valley’s incoming H-1Bs are slotted into routine roles that can easily be accomplished by U.S. graduates, according to Indian H-1Bs and U.S. managers who have spoken to Breitbart News. “There are ordinary routine workers to displace Americans; That is the kind of worker they are getting — so no more innovation for us,” said Lynn.
Trump should use his control of the Valley’s worker pipeline “to create labor practices that force employers to begin reinvesting in their American workforces,” Lynn said. Numerous polls show that “Hire American” policy is very popular, he added.
The company hiring is shown at the site.
For example,  Twitter asked for permission to import 830 H-1B workers from 2017 to 2019, at a wage of roughly $150,000 per person. Officials at the Department of Homeland Security rejected only eight of those requests.
The MyVisaJobs site says that the company is asking for another 161 workers in 2020, despite the massive American unemployment caused by China’s coronavirus.
Some of Twitter’s U.S.-based foreign workers have caused problems for conservatives and the GOP. In January 2018, for example, Project Veritas recorded Pranay Singh, a direct messaging engineer at Twitter. boasting that conservative accounts are targeted en-masse:
You use machine learning. You look for Trump, or America, or any of, like, five thousand, like, Keywords to describe a redneck. And then you look and you, like, parse all the messages, all like the pictures, and then you look for, like, stuff that matches, like, that stuff. And like if it, so you, like, you assign a value to each thing, so like Trump would be, like, .5, a picture of a gun would be like 1.5, and, like, if it comes up… the total comes up above, like, a certain value, then it’s a bot
Just go to a random tweet, and just look at the followers. They’ll all be like, guns, God, ‘Merica, like, and with the American flag and, like, the cross… Like, who says that? Who talks like that? It’s for sure a bot. You just delete them, but, like, the problem is there are hundreds of thousands of them, so you got to, like, write algorithms, that do it for you.
I would say majority of it are for Republicans, because they’re all from Russia and they wanted Trump to win, so yeah.
Google is also suppressing conservative speech while it hires compliant, controllable foreigners.
The MyVisaJobs page shows that Google asked for 14,300 foreign workers in place of Americans from 2017 to 2019 — even when company executives were free to hire some of the many sidelined or unemployed American graduates. Google even promised to pay roughly $140,000 per person — or far above the wage that young American graduates would happily accept.
Outside Silicon Valley, Fortune 500 companies also use the H-1B inflow to force down salaries paid to technology workers. The wage suppression is accomplished by flooding the labor market with software graduates, via a plethora of subcontractors who loudly compete for contracts and sometimes quietly cooperate to skim salaries from gig-worker graduates.
The MyVisaJobs page also indicates that most of Google’s H-1Bs hires are from China. In contrast, the bulk of Twitter’s H-1B hires are from India.
A campaign against H-1bs would also hit Bill Gates’ Microsoft and Jeff Bezos’ Amazon.




Only a complete fool would believe that Trump is any more for American Legal workers than the Democrat Party for Billionaires and Banksters!

“Trump Administration Betrays Low-Skilled American Workers.”

The latest ad from the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) asks Trump to reject the mass illegal and legal immigration policies supported by Wall Street, corporate executives, and most specifically, the GOP mega-donor Koch brothers.

Efforts by the big business lobby, Chamber of Commerce, Koch brothers, and George W. Bush Center include increasing employment-based legal immigration that would likely crush the historic wage gains that Trump has delivered for America’s blue collar and working class citizens.

Mark Zuckerberg’s Silicon Valley investors are uniting with the Koch network’s consumer and industrial investors to demand a huge DACA amnesty

A handful of Republican and Democrat lawmakers are continuing to tout a plan that gives amnesty to nearly a million illegal aliens in exchange for some amount of funding for President Trump’s proposed border wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

MULTI-CULTURALISM and the creation of a one-party globalist country to serve the rich in America’s open borders.

“Open border advocates, such as Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, claim illegal aliens are a net benefit to California with little evidence to support such an assertion. As the CIS has documented, the vast majority of illegals are poor, uneducated, and with few skills. How does accepting millions of illegal aliens and then granting them access to dozens of welfare programs benefit California’s economy? If illegals were contributing to the economy in any meaningful way, CA, with its 2.6 million illegals, would be booming.” STEVE BALDWIN – AMERICAN SPECTATOR

Josh Hawley: GOP Must Defend Middle Class Americans Against ‘Concentrated Corporate Power,’ Tech Billionaires


The Republican Party must defend America’s working and middle class against “concentrated corporate power” and the monopolization of entire sectors of the United States’ economy, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) says.


DHS Set to Welcome Many Indian H-1B Visa Workers Back to U.S.

AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi, File
7 May 202019
The Department of Homeland Security revealed Wednesday it will allow many Indian H-1B visa workers to return from vacations in their homeland to regain the Fortune 500 U.S. jobs now needed by U.S. graduates.
The agency’s welcome for the H-1B outsourcing workers comes as 25 million Americans seek jobs amid the wreckage caused by China’s coronavirus epidemic, and after President Donald Trump barred the entry of legal immigrants for 60 days.
The Indian government is arranging the flights at the request of Indians who wish to return to jobs in the United States and Indians in the United States who want to return home. The Indians were stuck at home when India’s government blocked flights to prevent the spread of China’s coronavirus.
Late Wednesday, DHS told Breitbart News: “For non-immigrant H1-B workers who possess valid travel documents and who overcome all grounds of inadmissibility, including travel restrictions implemented to prevent the spread of COVID-19, [Customs and Border Protection] will continue to process for admission into the United States.”
DHS refused to say if CBP will ask the Indians if their U.S. or Indian employers have already laid them off, or have violated the terms of their work visa. U.S. graduates expect many U.S. employers have laid off some Indian visa workers — alongside Americans — amid the crash.
Federal law requires the Indians to go home if their hours or pay are cut. Yet many Indian visa-workers are using online communities to find new U.S. jobs ahead of American graduates.
The first flight from Mumbai lands in New Jersey on Thursday morning.
An Indian newspaper, the, reported “hundreds” of “Non-Resident Indians” are trying to return to the United States:
Srikanth came to Bengaluru on March 15 with his children for a family emergency, leaving his wife alone in Boston, where the techie couple has been living for several years now. “I must return immediately or I may end up losing my job,” he said.
“My job and livelihood everything is at stake. I am on a valid H1B visa and my employer is pressuring me to return back as early as possible,” Shankar (name changed), one of the many stranded NRIs, said.
Polls show the public is overwhelmingly against the welcome for foreign workers — many of whom were given their jobs by other Indians working at U.S. companies, usually without regard to job searches by each year’s cohort of 800,000 white, Hispanic, Asian, and African-American skilled college graduates.
A recent Washington Post poll showed 65 percent of all adults said they supported “temporarily blocking nearly all immigration into the United States during the coronavirus outbreak?” The shutdown is backed by 69 percent of Hispanics, 60 percent of people with college degrees, 68 percent of people with income below $50,000, and 62 percent of people with income above $100.000. That Americans-before-migrants poll echoed prior polls by Ipsos and Rasmussen, as well as polls from 2017.
On April 22, President Donald Trump recognized the public demand for curbs and imposed a 60-day shutdown on legal immigration into the United States.
The temporary exclusion applies to legal immigrants, but it exempts several favored classes. The exempted people include people who buy green cards via the EB-5 loan program, as well as “any alien whose entry would be in the national interest, as determined by the Secretary of State, [or] the Secretary of Homeland Security.”
Amid fierce pressure from the GOP’s corporate wing, Trump also decided to leave intact the nation’s many visa worker programs, which allow companies to keep roughly 1 million lower-wage Indian contract workers in U.S. jobs.
The pressure also came from U.S. investors who are working with India’s government to expand the U.S.-India Outsourcing Economy to build on China’s role as a source of cheap blue-collar labor.
The Indian workers allow investors and executives to expand stock values by shrinking payrolls for U.S. graduates. Most of the H-1B contract-workers are paid less than American graduates, according to a May report by the Economic Policy Institute.
The acting secretary of the DHS, Chad Wolf, is a former lobbyist for the India-based outsourcing industry.

George W. Bush is backing estb.'s soft-focus PR #AllofUS campaign for unity, b/ his economic director spilled the beans:
"We don’t want [Trump’s] temporary [immigration] policy to become permanent."
Investors & progressives unite for extra migrants. #H1B 

Bush Center Slams Trump: We Want More Migration

The one million Indians include some 600,000 Indians in H-1B white-collar jobs, including banking, design, software, dentistry, management, and recruiting.
Overall, the visa jobs allow companies to keep roughly 1.5 million foreigners in white collar jobs and at least 400,000 people in seasonal blue-collar, clerical, hospitality, and farm jobs.
Many companies are still filing for extra visa workers, despite the millions of unemployed American white-collar workers. For example, since Trump declared a national emergency on March 13, Tim Cook’s Apple Inc. has asked DHS to extend the visas of 130 foreign workers. The job titles include “HR business partner,” market research analyst, software development engineer, radio frequency test engineer, data scientist, producer manager, engineering project manager, professional services consultant, as well as producer and creative writer.
U.S. journalists rarely report on the economic impact of the visa workers on white collar American graduates.
However, Trump also told his deputies on April 22 they need to relook at the many visa programs which destroy the jobs and salaries required by millions of college graduates in all 50 states around the country. Trump’s proclamation said:
Within 30 days of the effective date of this proclamation, the Secretary of Labor and the Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Secretary of State, shall review nonimmigrant programs and shall recommend to me other measures appropriate to stimulate the United States economy and ensure the prioritization, hiring, and employment of United States workers.
This 30-day process will pressure officials to examine the impact of the H-1B, B-1, L-1, OPT and CPT programs on American voters.
“We need to end the H1B program,” said Kevin Lynn, founder of U.S. Tech Workers. “We need to end, it– not reform it — but end it … If the coronavirus crisis has taught us anything, it has taught us that we cannot count on foreign countries.”
But “the administration is taking its cues from Silicon Valley,” such as Tim Cook, he added.
Indian visa workers have used Twitter to lobby for the return flights by saying they need to return to U.S. jobs and to extend their work permits.

The order states only those with at least 1 year of valid visa will be allowed. How about those whose visa is about to expire and need to apply for extensions? This will be leave a lot still stranded @HardeepSPuri @MoCA_GoI @airindiain

#RemoveVisaClause My visa is expiring in June. But my employer already ready with documents for extension. Before that I should be in Finland for them to apply the extension. Please remove Visa validity clause.@HardeepSPuri @PMOIndia @MEAIndia


@MoCA_GoI @HardeepSPuri Could you pls clarify, that we will be allowed to travel with a valid visa (H1, L1 etc) issued for a period of 3 years but some expiring in less than 6 months from now? Renewal process can only start once we are in US. #DontFlyEmpty #HelpNRIsReturnToUSA


@AmitShah @MOS_MEA @DrSJaishankar @HMOIndia @NikunjGargN @CNNnews18 @MoCA_GoI @HardeepSPuri @TOIIndiaNews @ndtv I'm on H4 visa expiring in July. My spouse's visa has gone 4 renewal. Mine can b renewed only from US#PleaseClarify if I can travel #DontFlyEmpty #HelpNRIsReturnToUSA


@IndianEmbassyUS Can u please help me board onto India to USA evacuation flight.@PIBHomeAffairs is only considering people with more than 1yr visa. I got my H1 for 6 months only and I came on vacation, now my H1 is left with 40 days. Can you please

Can you please tell them that we have to be in USA to get it extended. I have job and My employer is ready with extendes client letter for VISA extension. Please help telling them its normal in Us to have a month or shorter visa and can travel to USA.

All those #StrandedInIndia let us tell @PMOIndia @narendramodi @CovidIndiaSeva why they should allow #OutboundFlightsFromIndiaNOW One reason per tweet

Here is mine: #IWantToGoHomeBecause my young family in US is unable to manage on their own #HelpNRIsReturnToUSA

I want to go home because I miss my family a lot and I am at the verge of loosing my job for which I worked hard for 6 years..all my efforts will go waste. please I request the govt the to help us


@nitin_gadkari Sir please add voice to our case & #DontFlyEmpty planes to get back Indians stranded abroad. Let visa holders stranded in India go on those planes. We have been away from our families, out jobs for far too long. #HelpNRIsReturnToUSA #OutboundFlightsFromIndiaNOW 


Immigrants — like the birth of Americans’ children — help grow the economy. They expand the labor force, boost retail sales, spike real estate values, fuel the stock market, and expand the number of companies. A growing economy can be good for all — but it is especially good for wealthy people who can invest in company stocks.
Yet every annual wave of immigrants also causes much economic harm to the roughly 220 million Americans (and recent legal immigrants) who work for a living, or who are educating themselves to take jobs in a few years.
Every new wave of legal immigrants and illegal migrants competes for existing jobs and force down Americans’ wages. The arrivals also expand poverty, reduce pressure on investors to buy productivity-boosting machines, drive up the price of good housing, and add congestion to K-12 schools and universities.
Immigrants, and especially visa workers, also push Americans out of careers and technological research, and they distort Americans’ politics by expanding cultural diversity and identity politics.
Over the last 30 years, since George Bush’s father signed a 1990 bill roughly doubling immigration, the government’s massive inflow of immigrants has kept Americans wages almost flat (until 2018) and so has turbocharged the U.S. stock market.
The establishment’s immigration policy has worked with free trade to shift much wealth from middle-class employees and the heartland states towards the stock market and the major coastal cities.
Trump was elected in 2016 to help reverse the establishment’s economic policy.
Since  2017, he has mostly stopped illegal migration, and he pushed wages up for blue-collars in 2018 and 2019. He has also trimmed legal immigration, and his April 22 policy sets the stage for incremental, significant reductions in the visa worker programs, such as the little-known B-1 and OPT visa programs.

Another lawsuit alleges systematic, massive & damaging discrimination vs. American graduates by a Fortune 500 contractor.
DoJ & EEOC are passive, and the estb. media is mute, b/c the discrimination occurs via H-1B visa-worker 'immigration' program.#H1B 

Lawsuit: Indian Managers Use H-1Bs to Discriminate Against Americans

Follow Neil Munro on Twitter @NeilMunroDC, or email the author at