In January 2015 a three-part series of essays was published outlining why veterans can't get jobs today. For several reasons I find it necessary to belabor the issues detailed there.
President, Equal Justice Foundation
One basic problem is that a number of people on the EJF mailing list never received this newsletter. As they do every several years some group of radical feminists, whom I fondly refer to as "redfems," got together and claimed we were illegally sending spam. As a result the ejfi.org web site was blacklisted and various spam monitors bounced the newsletter.
As it only takes several complaints from individuals for this to happen I've found this is a common trick that redfems use and I'm sure we are not the only targets. This is, I believe, at least the fourth time in the past fifteen years it has been used against the Equal Justice Foundation, once even by a coven in New Zealand. I have, hopefully, gotten ejfi.org whitelisted and the current attack turned back. This follow up should now go out to one and all without undue hindrance.
It is probably simply a coincidence, but paranoia should be given its due, that our PC was hacked in this same time interval. I suppose in today's world everyone's PC gets hacked about twice a year...
In Part One of this newsletter I noted that a major reason veterans couldn't get jobs was that they were being given to foreigners on H1B and other visas. Sadly, I grossly underestimated the magnitude and impact of that problem. Adding to the burden is the uncertain state of the economy. As I was writing this I learned that IBM is laying off some 100,000 people worldwide.
I did not previously discuss the impact on veterans of the widespread practice of offshoring American jobs. The problem is complex and quantitative estimates vary widely. Linda Levine (2012) provides a Congressional Research Service report on this issue for those who care to dig deeper. Whatever the magnitude of these job losses they are primarily impacting National Guard and Reserve veterans who are returning from deployments to find their jobs have disappeared overseas while they were in combat.
Discharged and retiring veterans who are entering the labor market for the first time are primarily impacted by the creation, or lack thereof of, new jobs. With regard to that issue the Center for Immigration Studies released a report in June 2014 that I was unaware of.
The CIS report found that over the last 14 years, people who were born in the United States held 114.8 million jobs in 2000 but just 114.7 million in 2014, a drop of 127,000. But it's an entirely different picture for immigrants 5.7 million more jobs were held by aliens in the U.S. in 2014 compared to 2000.
Nor is that all. In February 2015 the CIS issued another report based on a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request that reveals some 5.5 million new work permits were issued to aliens between 2009 and 2014, above and beyond the number of new green card and temporary worker admissions in those years. This huge parallel alien work authorization system is far outside the limits set by Congress and destroys opportunities for veterans and citizens as well as inviting further illegal immigration.
Summarizing from that report, during the last five years ~1.8 million new work permits were issued to aliens with temporary visas or those who entered under the Visa Waiver Program. Of these some 1.2 million had a visa status for which employment is not authorized by law. For example, ~470,000 work permits were issued to aliens on tourist visas and 532,000 to foreign students. More than 156,000 were issued to dependents of students and guest workers, all in categories not authorized for employment by law.
About 982,000 new work permits were issued in this time period to illegal aliens or aliens unqualified for admission. Of these, 957,000 were aliens who crossed the border illegally. Inexplicably, 1,200 new work permits were issued to aliens who were denied asylum, were suspected of using fraudulent documents, were stowaways, or were refused at a port of entry.
A huge number of work permits, 1.7 million, were issued to aliens whose status was unknown, not recorded by the adjudicator, or not disclosed by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the agency that processes the applications. Work permits are gateway documents to driver's licenses and other benefits. If the government agency issuing them does not know or will not disclose how the bearer arrived in the country how can others rely on the authenticity of an individual's identity? It is equally disconcerting if the government does know and chooses not to disclose it.
We have been invaded, not by force but by stealth. Our Department of Defense spends at least $600 billion a year and there are 1.4 active-duty military personnel fighting numerous imperial wars in other countries while the homeland is overrun with unopposed invaders who are draining our life blood.
There is no reason this invasion cannot be stopped and turned back. According to Wikipedia during the Great Depression more stringent enforcement of immigration laws led to the expulsion ~2 million Mexican nationals from the United States. In 1954 the government implemented Operation Wetback that led to the deportation of nearly 1.3 million Mexicans from the United States.
In Part Two I reviewed the plight of veterans caught in the justice system. Since then I have again pushed our district attorney to adopt deferred prosecution in our veteran court rather than the current practice of a veteran plea bargaining to a deferred sentence that leaves a permanent conviction on their record. A district attorney should not, and must not be judged simply by the number of convictions he obtains. The real measure is how effectively his policies provide for public safety. In contrast, his present practices are criminogenic.
I have also requested of both the district attorney and the new sheriff that they set up a diversion program at the county jail to screen veterans for PTSD, TBI, and other traumas from their military service before or during the incarceration process. That would keep minor cases out of the justice system but direct wounded warriors to needed treatment.
At present veterans who are arrested but not convicted are traumatized by the "justice" system but do not receive any needed treatment for conditions that brought them to the attention of peace officers. My understanding is that the sheriff is currently in the process of hiring a liaison officer to work on issues such as this.
In Part Three I discussed issues faced by the Veterans Administration in dealing with the onset of OEF/OIF veterans coming home from our endless imperial wars. Sadly each new day seems to bring forward new problems and issues with that department.