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On the subject of hiring ranch help

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Soapweed

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The reason I don't hire more help is because of government rules and red tape. There is too much paperwork, withholding taxes, and other malarky, and the problems go up exponentially with the more hands you hire.

You can't hire kids anymore until they are "old enough" to work, and by then they are out of the notion. When I was a kid, my dad hired twelve and thirteen-year-olds to work in the hayfield. It was a good situation for ranchers and the kids. The ranchers got their hay put up, and the kids learned to drive the smaller tractors that everyone used in those days.

The kids learned how to work, and made good wages. Minimum wage was not a factor; there either wasn't any or it didn't apply to agriculture. The kids maybe didn't get super rich, but they also didn't price themselves out of a job. They had spending money for the upcoming school year, and learned to handle their money. If they spent it all before they had a chance to earn some more, they were SOL.

The "entry level" job working on a ranch often provided city kids with a taste of realism. They learned that milk comes from a cow, and that veggies are grown in a garden. Great memories and lifelong friendships were developed. In those days, a rancher agreed to furnish room and board, and pay X amount of wages once a month. There were no withholding taxes of any kind. It was the employee's responsibility to pay any income taxes due at the end of the year.

Then along came Uncle Sam, with his infinite "wisdom" and screwed up the system. More rules and regulations, laws against "child labor", a minimum wage factor, un-keepable OSHA guidelines, withholding taxes, etc. all contributed to major changes in the work force.

Ranchers have spent money on bigger and better equipment to get by with less labor. They hire more of their work done on contract. Instead of fixing their own windmills, they hire specialists who have boom trucks and proper equipment to do the job. Fencing is contracted out to fencing crews. Instead of hiring several kids to drive small tractors and help put up loose hay in stacks, haying is contracted out to be baled (which requires less people but more elaborate equipment).

Uncle Sam has messed with the system all across the United States. The reason ranchers don't hire more help is the same reason other industries and businesses don't hire more help. There is way too much government medling. This is also the reason so much of our industry is now being done overseas. The United States has just plumb priced themselves out of business. Democrats, Liberals, Big Unions, and voters that continually want "something for nothing" are the major contributors to this trend.

This is the way I see it strictly from a cowboy's perspective.
 

Jason

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Isn't part of the deal that there just aren't any kids around to hire?

If I want part time help the only source I have is Hutterite colonies.

There is 1 family with kids within 10 miles of us, and they have their own place.

Because of the better equipment etc. I have been able to switch from my granddad having 11 men here to just me and my semi retired dad.
 

John SD

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I cover the hayground I put up with help from one neighbor. We have a 16' swing tongue moco and a round baler and get the hay put up a lot faster than 30 years ago when there was a bunch more family help available including operators for 3 Farmhand tractors, a hay sweep, wheel rake, and a neighbor who did custom swathing with a self propelled swather.

BTW, I started working in the hayfield when I was 6 running the 8N on the Farmhand wheel rake. Graduated to the hay sweep (reversed '50 Chev pickup) the next year and started on the new IH 210 14' swather when I was 9. Didn't start stacking hay with a Super M until I was 16. Nowdays my work experience wouldn't be PC with all the "child labor" BS. :roll:
 

CattleRMe

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We went from stacking hay to round bales due to no hay waddies for the field. When I was growing up there would be 10 in the hayfield stacking one adult with a bunch of kids. Now the kids just aren't around to hire it seems. In the case they are around they either don't wanna be in the country or their folks aren't making them work.
 

Econ101

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Connect up with the coaches at the local high school. You may find some helpers there. That is where I got my last good helpers---and some not so good. It really stuns them to see someone out do them at the hayfield. Sometimes they work a little harder because of it. If you pay under $500.00 (I think it is still 500) per year, I don't think you even have to W-2 them. If you end up paying them over the 500, it might be worth doing the paperwork.
 

theHiredMansWife

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Soapweed said:
The reason I don't hire more help is because of government rules and red tape. There is too much paperwork, withholding taxes, and other malarky, and the problems go up exponentially with the more hands you hire.

You can't hire kids anymore until they are "old enough" to work, and by then they are out of the notion. When I was a kid, my dad hired twelve and thirteen-year-olds to work in the hayfield. It was a good situation for ranchers and the kids. The ranchers got their hay put up, and the kids learned to drive the smaller tractors that everyone used in those days.

The kids learned how to work, and made good wages. Minimum wage was not a factor; there either wasn't any or it didn't apply to agriculture.

Uhhh..
In Nebraska at least, minimum wage *still* doesn't apply to ag. jobs or to those who employ less than 4 people at a time.
Minimum employment age is 14, or 12 with parental permission. Under twelve is allowed on "farms" that are min. wage exempt (ie, less than 4 employees)
http://www.dol.gov/esa/programs/whd/state/agriemp2.htm


I think those who have suggested the lack of interest from area kids are probably closer to the mark, here.
 

kolanuraven

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First off....here most kids are too lazy and soft to WORK in a hayfield. They have not been raised ' outside' and can't start a tractor if you held a gun on them.


BUT....I've got neighbors who raised their kids right...I got lucky when I moved here 18 yrs ago---from just 5 miles down the road!!. I started working them about the age of 12.....paid them about $10/hr and all the pizza & coolaid they hold. Worked like a charm.

Now 18 yrs later when it's time to put up hay,eventhough we don't do but about 1,000 squares now as the rest is rolled, they BEG to work. I still pay them $10/hr and it's all the pizza and beer they can hold!!!

I pay all my folks as contract labor....keeps the paperwork monkey off my back..

I got lucky with my move to this community!! I know it!!
 

Tap

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Let's see, ranchers getting bigger and getting by with less help than their parents did.

Feeders and meatpackers getting more efficient and larger so as to compete.

Could there be any economic lessons here? :? :wink:
 

Econ101

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Maybe you could follow Tyson's example (not).

James Fulford Archive
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Illegals’ Employers Meet RICO Doomsday Machine

By James Fulford

We reported in December that Chicago lawyer Howard Foster had filed a class action against Colin Service Systems, employers of illegal immigrants, on behalf of honest employers, who don’t. Foster has now filed two class actions on behalf of native-born workers (and legal immigrants) against employers who have apparently conspired to hire illegal immigrants on a massive scale.

Tyson Foods, and IBP, a subsidiary of Tyson, are being sued by Foster on behalf of

“[A]ll persons legally authorized to be employed in the United States (“U.S.”) who have been employed by defendant Tyson Foods, Inc. (Tyson), reportedly the world’s largest processor and marketer of poultry, as hourly wage earners at 15 of its facilities throughout the U.S. during the last four years.”

The issue is cheap labor. It benefits employers but lowers the wages of American workers in the surrounding area. For, example, in 1999, NumbersUSA’s Roy Beck testified before Congress on the damage done by immigrant labor to workers in the meat-packing industry.

Tyson is vulnerable because it has already been indicted by the U.S. Department of Justice for conspiracy to hire illegals in its Shelbyville, Tennessee plant. (The firm is also on probation for bribing Clinton Agricultural Secretary Mike Espy.) Foster is simply piling on in time-honored trial-lawyer style.

Foster is able to do this because he has noticed that the 1996 immigration reform legislation, a bitter disappointment in so many ways, did at least allow private individuals to sue to enforce the law – a provision commonly added by legislators at the behest of the plaintiff bar. As the LA Times noted (New Angle in Fight Against Hiring Illegal Immigrants, April 3 2002):

Corporate and immigration law experts said the approach has the potential to become a private "enforcement tool" supplanting federal employer sanctions laws, but only if plaintiffs can pass the high bar of proof required under the Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations statute.

Similar suits have been backed by supporters of strict immigration law enforcement, who say the prospect of treble damages under RICO could force employers to think hard before hiring undocumented workers. That could have a big effect in California, where roughly half of the estimated 7 million to 12 million illegal immigrants in the U.S. are employed.

The advantage of a private lawsuit [PDF file of National Law Journal article on use of RICO against illegal immigrants] is that unlike INS enforcement, it’s not influenced by political factors. As I reported previously, INS enforcement is down, the Bush administration isn’t interested in enforcing these laws, but the RICO act allows America’s notoriously hungry tort lawyers to do what the government won’t.

The case against Tyson in criminal court involves conspiracy to smuggle aliens into the U.S. and faked Social Security cards provided by Amador Anchondo-Rascon, who copped a plea recently and is described in the suit as “an informal Tyson employee.” (See Wichita Eagle 1/27/02 Immigrant lived American Dream by trafficking illegals into U.S.)

National Public Radio (!) did a significant story about the Tyson suit, interviewing G. Robert Blakey, who drafted the RICO act when he was Counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Blakey is the expert on RICO. He said that he thought that the Tyson suit “has substantial chance,” largely because of the greater ease of demonstrating that employees, rather than employers, are damaged:

“What we now have in the Tyson case is the employees themselves complaining that their wages were artificially depressed, by the willingness of Tyson foods to bring in illegal aliens who would then work at artificially depressed wages. That sounds to me like a superb suit.”

[Listen to the interview in RealAudio by clicking here.]

Mainstream media reaction to this is – guess what? - to sympathise with the illegal workers. AP reported that “Tyson Indictments Leave Some Illegal Immigrants Stranded.” It quoted a Chattanooga social worker:

"They are not going back home," he said. "They are forced to look for other means of survival."

Of course, Tyson Foods, which apparently paid their fare from Mexico, could be required to pay their fare going the other way, if they were willing to go.

Ironically, the same social worker told the Boston Globe (2/2/02) that some Mexicans were leaving, because of economic concerns, the Tyson lawsuit, and their fear of being drafted into the War on Terrorism.

RICO is a brutal weapon. It has been misused in the past, for example to attack political dissent.

But these suits are legitimate:

1. A crime has been committed. If Tyson is guilty, they’ve violated the Immigration and Nationality Act in order to make money. The technical name for this is “enterprise crime” and of course, it’s “Organized Crime” even if they don’t have guns.
2. Tyson made money from it. Tyson has 120,000 employees. (Every dollar an hour that they can lower their average wages is worth roughly a quarter of a billion dollars annually.)
3. American workers lost money. (See above.)
4. They’re suing.

We at VDARE.COM wish them luck.

Click here for the full text of the complaint against Tyson Food, with links.
 

nenmrancher

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As long as it is contract labor and you pay them less than 600.00 per year you do not have to file anything with the feds. Over 600.00 dollars you have to file federal form 1096 and give the employee a 1099 form.
 

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