Congress Resumes Nuclear Testing in the Pacific

Whether from careless ignorance, or calculated evil, Congress is about to drop a weapon of mass destruction on Saipan, the primary island of the Commonwealth of Northern Marianas Islands (CNMI), home to about 70,000 defenseless and innocent people.

They will become the guinea pigs for an experiment every bit as destructive as a nuclear weapon, an increase in the minimum wage of 137%, from $3.05 to $7.25 in just four years. The US is every bit as tyrannical an imperial power over island colonies as any in history.

Should the Congress proceed with this obscenity, let there be no more smug assurances that legal minimum wages do not cause unemployment and misery.

Saipan Tribune

... Cohen said he has seen a copy of the bill, which includes a provision for the CNMI minimum wage to increase from $3.05 per hour to $7.25 per hour over a four-year period.

He said that on the first year, $1.50 will be added to the current minimum rate, then 50 cents after every six months. ...

Drastic changes

If a federal minimum wage and immigration control is implemented in the CNMI, drastic changes across all sectors are expected to occur in the CNMI.

Right now, Cohen said that the CNMI should brace itself for “very significant challenges” and maybe further scrutiny by the U.S. Congress.

“There will be a lot of scrutiny on the situation in the CNMI and there's potential that this place would be a much, much different place a year from now than it is today. In fact, there's a potential that this place will undergo radical changes in the next few months,” said Cohen.

'It will kill CNMI'

Saipan Chamber of Commerce president Juan Pan Guerrero said the problem is that the U.S. Congress “believes that they have the best solutions for us.”

Guerrero also expressed disappointment that the CNMI is not being consulted.

“I haven't even seen a copy of the minimum wage bill. It's very frustrating that our leaders come to us asking us to come out with a position but we're not even provided a copy of the bill,” said Guerrero.

He said the CNMI would agree to a minimum wage increase “but not on their terms.” He said the U.S. Congress can convene a wage board to study the CNMI situation.

“I think that we need to sit down, have it reviewed by professionals to see what the CNMI can afford. We've seen the JAL pullout, Northwest terminated one more flight, Continental is nowhere to be seen. Tourism is suffering. We are in crisis! What we're saying is let's have a federal review board. If Miller wants to appoint himself, so be it. It has to be balanced. Bring in an economist to look at our economic situation. Do their research. Come up with an economic study,” he said.

As it is, he said that the U.S. Congress' plan for the CNMI would “kill” the Commonwealth.

“What I don't understand is why do they want to kill the Commonwealth? Are they going to give us financial assistance, not just government but also the private sector?” Guerrero asked.

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