Russian Labour Shortages

The demographics were not looking good before the invasion of Ukraine. Now they look dire indeed:

The poll by Russia’s Yegor Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy, which surveys managers of around 1,000 industrial enterprises in the country each month, found in April that 35 percent of enterprises lacked workers. The institute said that was the highest figure since 1996.


This took me a moment. At first I thought of those who avoided conscription leaving Russia. Then I thought of those in the army ranks, ouch! Now Russia is thinking of slave labor…among its own. This wont end well. The middle is not so hot either.

Prison labor is a booming business in Shiny-land. The 13th amendment explicitly allows forced labor as punishment for a crime. Prison labor accounts for about $11B in goods and services in the US, per year, at pay rates well below $1/hr. The Shiniest states, pay nothing to the prisoners they force to work.


I have a couple ex-con acquaintances.
Both say that the ability to work helped them cope with prison.
Especially outdoor work.
One guy (in MI, by chance) makes crochet stuff that he sells.
The other guy, in TX, cherished “the farm”.

Neither guy likes the “yard”.

So. I wonder if the folks that produce these articles ever actually talk to inmates?
IMO this is a biased POV.




The issue is who is arrested to end up as cheap prison labor.

Your young white male offender has a much better chance of not going to prison…etc…and not being cheap labor.

We treat young white offenders as we should. Everyone else deserves the same treatment.

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That was not the issue mentioned by Steve.



I have a nephew who did some time in California. He says he appreciated the work. The work (making shoes) also allowed him to repair shoes for other guys and earn a pack of cigarettes. Packs were the universal currency (nominal value, $5) and could be traded for anything, including drugs.


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Steve and I have the same mother.

Were they paid at least the Federal minimum wage? Or 50 cents/hr? Or nothing? There are several companies who specialize in contract convict labor. How much does the company make off their labor, vs what the convicts are paid? Are the convicts treated with respect, maybe for the first time in their lives, or treated like slaves?

But my real point was that, all the sturm und drang about Russian forced labor, is misplaced, because the same thing goes on in Shiny-land, and has gone on for a long time.

There used to be a museum in the Michigan state prison in Jackson. I paid it a visit some years ago. Tidbits I learned: the prisoners used to make leather goods, very well made leather goods, that were sold in a store that stood in front of the prison, with the prisoners keeping what their goods were sold for. That program was ended. There used to be a prison farm which raised a lot of fresh fruit and veggies for the prisoner’s tables. After a couple escapes, and violence done to people living close to the prison farm, the farm was shut down



These guys WANTED THE ABILITY to do something “productive”, rather than just sit in a 6x9 cell … Waiting.
I think the pay was not a determining factor.

In a past life, I volunteered a small native plants plot on city property in my town.
2x per year, I’d contact the county jail, who would bring 10 or so guys to my plot, where they would do maintenance and clean up. This got them out of the jail. They claimed that they WANTED the opportunity. They were “trustees”, or “weekend prisoners”.

The escapee problem… Rare.
Violence, more rare. (One happened a couple years ago, in TX).

If the SJW pushing this “reform” succeeds, what will be the consequences, and who will “pay” it?

A few years ago, some body complained that some units had no AC. They “won” and the units were AC’d.
Now, the older inmates have to “suffer” the cold, which causes them health issues.

If this article’s SJW “wins”… The SJW is gonna pat himself on the back, and go home to his wonderful life.

The inmates may well be stuck in that 6x9… Waiting.
Ie, it may not be a “win” for the inmates.


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Could the same be true for the Russians being assigned to screwing on lugnuts at an auto plant? As I said, my real point was that using prisoners as forced labor has been a thing in the US for a long time, so where is the basis for finger waggling at the Russians?


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Ah many of the convicts in Russia no longer exist. Many volunteered.

For how many decades have we heard that line about a judge glaring at a young man, in a heap of trouble, and saying “a year in jail, or a hitch in the Marines?”



Depends on the background of the man. Which was my point. There is unequal justice and we all know it.

A prison sentence is a financial death sentence in America. Doesn’t happen to daddy’s kid.

Money is not the be-all, end-all of life.

The Captain

Just surviving prison should be enough?

:rofl: :rofl: :rofl: