American Working Man Becoming Obsolete, Reports Bloomberg/Business Week

In our rapidly changing world things that used to be a ubiquitous part of our daily lives suddenly become obsolete. Things like typewriters, VCRs, vinyl records and other products disappear from our homes and our lives. These relics of a bygone time get tossed, or stuffed in boxes and stored in attics, and manufacturers simply stop producing them.

An article by Bloomberg/Business Week notes another ubiquitous part of our daily lives that is on the road to obsolescence: The American working man. “Employers are increasingly giving up on the American man,” notes the article. The big difference is that human beings won’t sit quietly in attics collecting dust, and we are likely to continue “manufacturing” them whether employers want them or not.

The data are pretty bleak. Only 63.5 percent of working age American men have jobs. Those who do have jobs are earning substantially less. Real wages for American ages 30 to 50 have dropped by 27 percent since 1969. The trends are not likely to reverse any time soon. The article offers numerous explanations for this phenomenon – globalization, mechanization, the increasing number of women entering the labor force.

Of course one phenomenon that is assiduously avoided is the impact of mass immigration which occurred concurrently and continues even as the American male worker goes the way of the typewriter. With or without mass immigration, American workers – male and female – would have faced adversity due to the other factors noted. But mass immigration has only exacerbated an already difficult situation.

What the elite – in other words, Bloomberg/Business Week’s readership – fail to grasp is that they will ultimately pay a price for writing off or impoverishing large segments of the American labor force and importing lots more impoverished workers from abroad. High levels of structural unemployment and large numbers of poverty wage workers are simply incompatible with social stability.

Disenfranchised workers or those with no hope of upward mobility cannot be relegated to boxes in the attic. When large segments of the population do not share in a nation’s prosperity and when social welfare programs reach their fiscal limits, trouble ensues. Social order breaks down. Governments topple, or become irrelevant as their functions are replaced by criminal enterprises or radical ideologies. The oases for the elite and their money become fewer and farther between.

The elite in America had better take heed. Not every factor that is leading to the obsolescence of the American male worker can be reversed. Mass immigration, however, is one that can be and it’s a good place to start.

About Author


Ira joined the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) in 1986 with experience as a journalist, professor of journalism, special assistant to Gov. Richard Lamm (Colorado), and press secretary of the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee. His columns have appeared in National Review, LA Times, NY Times, Washington Post, Newsweek, and more. He is an experienced TV and radio commentator.


  1. avatar
    sigmond strauss on

    United States should have plenty of work If we stop the billioners take the jobs out of the country.Not only they take out the work but they are not paying the taxes they should pay.We lost most of the work because they are playing the game of compatation which billoner can rob or make money.Not only they took out the work from this country.but they are importing cheap labor from all over the world.Meanwhile we have to pay salary for the people who are unemployed.The cheap labor cost tremendes amount of for us.There are plenty of work.If we stop this crooked Govermment giving our jobs away so they can profit on the American job less.I would like to see If the shoremen workers could stop to unloading the ships thet bring in the cheap goods from over seas.No foraign labor or goods until every workers who wants to work has a job. Ps you may export our govermment let them feel the misery we have to go through every day.They shoul be forced to pay high taxes to be able to care all the un employd workers in the United States.

  2. avatar

    Ed Devine- Too bad the Tea Party movement has degenerated into a front for billionaires to consolidate their already considerable wealth and power in an effort to further erode any semblance of control that the people still exercise over Corporate America. That’s libertarianism? Who knew?

    Contributing time and money to the Tea Party at this point in time very much makes you one of the villains.

  3. avatar
    robert marks jr on

    its all treason and we need to fight it , many things are comeing from the un now we cant do things by the un law its wrong , the great hillary has signed the small arms treaty she cant do that its treason ,we dont go by others laws but our own its the law ,along with many things comeing out of the un , illary and obama dont want guns in our country so they can rule us and i heard people want her for president may as well keep what we have ,they are the same

  4. avatar

    More than a few of us in the Tea Party movement are skeptical of the GOP’s “Big Tent” outreach. Certainly there are those devoutly partisan Republicans who will insist that the outreach to liberals and moderates best serves the party and will have the effect of making said “Big Tent targets” more “conservative”. However, the true conservatives among us recognize that the Big Tent also has the negative effect of liberalizing the agenda, and providing cover for RINO’s who really shouldn’t hold elected office in the first place. Certainly this inability to support a fundamental objective shared by the majority of America’s citizens from all partisan persuasions raises questions regarding RNC/GOP Leadership and their arrogant refusal to honor and respect the will of the people as the guidance in our governance. There are no problems confronting America’s citizens that would not be measurably, immediately improved by securing our borders and enforcing our immigration laws. GOP Leaders seem misguided in the choice of distancing the core conservative voter even farther from the RNC/GOP incumbents and party backed candidates.

    It’s hard to argue that the majority of conservative voters might see little value in courting any voters who assert that border security and immigration enforcement is either unnecessary, or racist. Certainly unconstrained immigration and lax enforcement would seem to work against any meaningful jobs/economic policy that Republicans or Democrats might offer. Even if our economy recovers and begins to create hundreds of thousands of jobs monthly, that many or more illegal aliens, their dependents and the burden the represent to our taxpayers and our “finite resources” offsets any possible benefit, and any hope of ever reducing the size, scope and costs of Government.

    Most recently the Department of Labor reported zero jobs growth (that’s today’s news people), while our President ever the panderer, ordered an end to non-criminal illegal alien deportations and work permits for perhaps 300,000 additional illegal aliens already operating in our communities. Pragmatically speaking, this doesn’t equate to the zero jobs being created in the most recent jobs report, but rather a loss of 300,000 jobs as it relates to American citizens. Worse, Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis is signing agreements with foreign governments promising to enforce U.S. labor and wage protections for illegal alien workers who’ve violated our borders, perhaps committing fraud and identity theft along the way to taking American jobs.

    Like it or not folks, too many people competing for the same limited resources is NOT, and NEVER WILL BE, sane, sustainable social, economic or environmental policy! If it were, the U.S. wouldn’t be the only remaining industrialized nation still pursuing such dangerously misguided policies.

    This is neither partisan or racist, simply pragmatic fact.

    What does it benefit America’s citizens and taxpayers to spend so much blood and treasure trying to spread democracy in other countries, protecting other nations citizens and borders, when this Administration and it’s cheap labor lackeys in industry make it easier and far more lucrative for illegal aliens to violate our borders and take advantage of taxpayer largess? Indeed, all those who are too lazy, too cowardly or too self interested to do the hard work of building their own democracy (I would note, with the help of billions of U.S. tax dollars, and countless American lives), those who are unwilling to fight corruption and build social and economic reforms in the birth countries, are hardly the sort of individuals our immigration policies should encourage to come nor our enforcement practices tolerate remaining.

  5. avatar

    I am very concerned about statements made by Maryland (Democrat) Delegate Ana Sol Gutierrez on Wash. DC’s WAMU 88.5 “Politics Hour” this past Friday (Aug. 26).
    I disapprove of Ms. Gutierrez’s comments and tone about American’s support for established “Rules of Law”–an American idea that outcomes of justice should never be favor for any particular income bracket nor those with a certain skin color. Secondly, with thousands of Americans (including the highly educated) out of work, wanting jobs and a respectful workplace to perform that job, I find appalling and insulting Ms. Gutierrez’s implied support for 1) continuing Old Guard Big Businesses operating hazard-laden “sweatshops” that exclusively hire only foreign-born, undocumented persons, and 2) increasing the seemingly exclusive, discriminatory hiring by similar “sweatshop” high tech entities, of “smarter than Americans!” foreign-born workers through upping H1-B visas.

    I would love to see a more law-abiding public servant take Ms. Gutierrez’s place in the Maryland House of Delegates.

    • avatar

      I would suggest that everyone who is concerned about illegal and legal immigratio read about the United Nations Agenda 21. It will explain so very much regarding what Barry Obama and the Council on Foreign Relations is doing. It is all about the redistribution of wealth, but not their wealth, I might add.