Back in 2009 as the industry experienced the downturn, I was forced into the used-equipment business. I had customers downsizing because they couldn’t pay their overhead. Some went out of business. They had used equipment for sell. I knew the sellers, and I knew others seeking used equipment in a shaky economy. A new opportunity was born.

Today, everybody is asking me for people.

“Jim, I need some IG guys. Do you know of anyone? I need a truck driver. I need a saw operator. Do you know somebody who wants to work?  We hired 50 people and a week later all but five are gone! They said the job wasn’t for them. Some said nothing. We passed by their station after the work break, and they were gone. They just left!”

Well, I thought, maybe I should also be into the people business too?  Except, used equipment is way easier to find than people.

Then as I drive to my next destination, I turn on the radio and hear that we are rounding up illegal immigrants and sending them home.

I think back 10 years ago to a trip my wife and I made to Ellis Island. My grandpa was an immigrant. At the age of 18, he left my grandma behind in Sapino, Italy, and spent his entire savings on a boat ride to America. I got to see the very place where he entered the USA. He passed the entrance requirements and was allowed entry. They even had a diagram of the actual boat he came in on and a copy of a passenger record showing his signature.

Giuseppe Mottillo settled in Ellwood City, Pa., and began work in the steel factory. After he settled in, he sent money for his wife to join him — my grandma. Both became U.S. citizens and contributed to the local economy, and of course prolificated some children and grandchildren, including yours truly. Many of Giuseppe’s friends from Italy joined him. There was plenty of work for all of them, and plenty of hard workers to join alongside Giuseppe.

So, when did things become so complicated?

1 Comment

  1. Your question is easy to answer Jim.
    1. Unlike your grandparents, immigrants are now overloading our welfare system and costing untold billions in taxpayer money to support them.
    2. Immigrants are now bringing drugs into our country to kill and maim our children.
    3. Immigrants are now coming in to kill us (think Kate Stienlie and 9/11).
    Just sayin.

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