Thursday, September 15, 2005

let them eat more cake

Last week Mr. Bush signed an executive order suspending something called the Davis-Bacon Act. The 1931 law requires federally-funded contractors to pay laborers the prevailing wage in the area where the construction takes place. In New Orleans, the prevailing rate for construction workers is $9 an hour.

The weight of Mr. Bush's suspension of Davis-Bacon is that contractors who have been given no bid and cost plus contracts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina may pay workers as little as they will take.

Hmm...let's see: homeless, unemployed, workers offered five or six bucks an hour on a take-it-or-leave-it basis by corporations guaranteed a fixed percentage of profit… That sounds about right. That's the American spirit I celebrate each and every Labor Day. And it's certainly what I imagine Jesus would do.

Is there no upright man or woman in the Congress who will call this man to account for this evil? Is there no prophet in the land to wake him from this spell? Does he not have a single friend with the heart to break his heart on behalf of the oppressed?

Not today. Today is business as usual.

It's a good thing Mr. Bush doesn't read. Otherwise he might hear the words of God and turn in mid-stride and spoil everything.

1 comment:

malfunction54 said...

Hmmm, let's look at it in the other direction as well. Let's say you bring in workers from other areas and other contractors (yes, I'm looking at you, Mr. Halliburon... er, I mean Cheney). They can now be paid at higher rates than they would be paid under the law.