OECD Report: Mexicans Work Harder Than You | The Informer | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly
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OECD Report: Mexicans Work Harder Than You

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Wed, Apr 13, 2011 at 11:00 AM

click to enlarge Who's lazy now, betch?
  • Who's lazy now, betch?
Take that, Slowpoke Rodriguez.

The stereotype of Mexicans as drunk, lazy fuck-ups is easily debunked in California by a trip to the town square or Home Depot parking lot, but finally some researchers step in to quiet the racist anti-immigration crazies with cold hard fact. (Not that they'll ever really shut up.)

A more concerning modern argument against Latinos crossing the border is that Mexico is to blame for its own shit economy, and its people should therefore be condemned to pick up the pieces, instead of leeching off our fine American jobs. In response, one thing we can now say for sure:

The economic plight of the Mexican -- forcing many to immigrate to the U.S. -- is not due to lack of effort.

A new Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development report on 29 industrialized countries' daily labor habits (both at the workplace and at home) shows that Mexico takes the No. 1 spot, by a longshot. Though they're only in the top four for paid hours, Mexicans more than make up the difference with unpaid hours -- largely due to a matriarchal society in which women work at home.

How, then, does this high-performing grindstone of a nation also have the largest level of "relative poverty" in the entire pool?

UC San Diego economist tries to answer that question in his paper "Why Isn't Mexico Rich?" Others have suggested a corrupt Mexican government is to blame -- and the U.S.' own interests, mainly former President Bill Clinton's trade agreement, have only pushed our southern neighbor further into poverty.

The U.S. is eight spots behind Mexico on the hardworking scale:

click to enlarge OECD
  • OECD
Here are all the OECD's latest findings on Mexico.

As for the "stealing American jobs" argument, UCLA professor Raul Hinojosa-Ojeda will have you know that the undocumented Latino workforce actually creates jobs north of the border.

It's sure getting difficult to be flagrantly racist these days. Thanks a lot, science.

[@simone_electra/swilson@laweekly.com]

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