$3.7 Billion for E-Verify

 

President Obama is in desperate need of congressional action on the border crisis. Specifically, he is seeking $3.7 billion in emergency funding to accelerate the care for, and processing of, unaccompanied minors and single mothers with children crossing our southern border illegally from Central America via Mexico. The question that we, as conservatives, as taxpayers, and as Americans should be asking ourselves is this: what should we try to buy with our $3.7 billion? The answer, I think, is breathtakingly clear: we should demand E-Verify.

It is frequently said among our politicians and pundits that our immigration system is “broken.” The claim is especially heard from the left, but even conservatives – who think that the problem is simply that the law is not being enforced – are likely to admit that something is not working correctly. It is a curious fact that little attention seems to be paid to how exactly the immigration system is broken.

By this I don’t even necessarily mean, “how did the immigration system come to be broken?” (though an account of the relevant history could be helpful as well). I merely mean what precisely is not working.

It is in the nature of broken things – like the car in my driveway, for instance – that they are very difficult to fix if you don’t know which part is not functioning properly. By contrast, if you have a clear knowledge of the symptoms, at the very least you tend to waste less time on things that are not entirely germane. Since I know, in the case of my car, that all of the lights except the headlights refuse to turn on, I have not tried to remedy the situation by changing the oil or by looking behind the wheels.

In the immigration problem, as we will see, we are often trying to fix the wrong thing.

The root problem with our immigration system is quite easy to state in detail. The fact that it is not stated more often is clear evidence of the “will to obfuscation” among those with vested interests in keeping the system broken. This is what’s wrong:

The number of illegal aliens in America has been growing since the Reagan amnesty of 1986. At first, these aliens were limited both geographically and, more to the point, by the jobs that they could hold. They necessarily took employment where cash changed hands or where, for other reasons, the authorities were not involved. Over time, certain employers – especially those who could get away with resorting to the black market – found a competitive advantage in hiring illegal aliens.

The “career choice” of illegal aliens (and, at the same time, the geographic range) increased as consequences for failing to obey the law became weaker and weaker. That choice expanded dramatically as illegal aliens began providing fake Social Security cards to obtain employment – despite the fact that the employee’s name and Social Security number did not match.

The Social Security Administration sent out “no-match” letters in these cases and some employers did (and some still do) purge their employee bases of such individuals. These letters, which actually ceased altogether from 2008 until 2011, have been diluted in their legal import to employers by virtue of immigration-related litigation. An interesting discussion on no-match letters can be found here.

At the same time as the legal ramifications for hiring illegal aliens evaporated, the moral consequences of doing so dissolved as well.

First of all, every Man Jack and Woman Jill employer in America who employees illegal aliens knows damn well that they are doing so. Meg Whitman lost her race for governor of California because no one believed that a former eBay CEO who employed a maid in her house for nine years (whom she described as like a member of her family) was so stupid as to not actually know that that employee was here illegally.

So it is with the savvy businessmen across America. The Social Security card that they take does not prove, to them or anyone else, that their employee is legally allowed to work in America. Rather, it merely gives them plausible deniability that they were aware that their employee was illegal.

It is on this sea of plausible deniability that we have floated the illegal alien ark. And the employers, and their dishonest defenders in the Chamber of Commerce, are frankly terrified that the ark might someday sink…that they themselves might yet end up in jail — because they know full well that they are breaking the law and that they are foisting the social and economic costs of their “business practices” onto their neighbors.

Believe me, if you give the average employer a way out — especially one that allows a gradual ratcheting down of his illegal alien worker base — he will grasp at it in a heartbeat.

So the point is this: The 12-20 million illegal aliens in the U.S.; the swamping of our emergency rooms and the invasion of our state parks; the weight on our welfare services and the heart-wrenching unemployment in American ghettos; the countless cases of hit-and-run accidents; the lawlessness that accompanies any criminal underground whose members fear the police more than the drug dealers, rapists and murderers in their midst; the enormously expensive and utterly useless fence; the mad rush of children and pregnant mothers across 1,000 miles of badlands and deserts; and the babies floating in the Rio Grande: they all exist because employers do not have sufficient incentive or morality to proactively determine if the person handing them that Social Security card is legally allowed to work in the United States.

It’s that simple.

But there is an equally simple, technological solution to this problem. It is called E-Verify. According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services webpage:

E-Verify is an Internet-based system that allows businesses to determine the eligibility of their employees to work in the United States. E-Verify is fast, free and easy to use – and it’s the best way employers can ensure a legal workforce.

If E-Verify became the law of the land, McDonald’s, Hyatt, Dunkin’ Donuts and dozens of other large companies would simply call in their lawyers and say: “Ok, how do we implement this?” Half of the illegal aliens in America would instantly find themselves unemployable. Gradually, even restaurants, liquor stores, and cleaning services would be purged as well. No other single law would be as devastating to the illegal alien cancer in America.

Of course, it would be ideal if the law were retroactive, but it does not need to be. Over time, the natural turnover of employees will result in illegal aliens going home. And yes, this is nothing more than Mitt Romney’s “self-deportation.” It may take time, but it will work.

Additionally, it will help to stop the flow across the border. Of course, children and mothers who already have a working family member to support them in America will still come. But they will be coming specifically and solely as burdens.

I can prove mathematically that if we do not find a way to send illegal aliens who are here already back to their home countries, then it makes no difference how big a fence we build. Interrupting the illegal work chain is the key to getting illegal aliens to go home.

The whole partisan debate over immigration in Washington has been presented in terms of a “comprehensive” solution to our immigration problem versus the pejoratively-termed “piecemeal” approach, which principally seeks to obtain border security first and foremost. Border security can only be achieved by sending illegal aliens who are already in the country back to their homes. We are at our Rahm Emanuel moment in the immigration fight: the president is now demanding a piecemeal piece of legislation!

I say, let’s give it to him. Give him the money. And attach a clause making E-Verify mandatory for all employers in America.

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What say you, Ricochetti?

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  1. hawk@haakondahl.com Inactive
    hawk@haakondahl.com
    @BallDiamondBall

    Mike H:

    I’m having trouble deciphering what you’re implying in your contrived example. I’m not sure what economic relevance it has. The signal seems to be that we’re so desperate to fill a low productivity job that someone needs to give up a more productive job and do this instead. When you restrict immigration you are effectively raising wages by fiat.

     When you fail to control immigration, as any sane policy would, you are lowering wages by fiat.  And TG’s “contrived examples” seemed like pretty straightforward illustrations.

    • #91
  2. hawk@haakondahl.com Inactive
    hawk@haakondahl.com
    @BallDiamondBall

    Michael Stopa:

    Midget Faded Rattlesnake:

    (Obviously, many employers believe that hiring only employees who’ve passed some sort of background check makes for a more productive workplace. But do employers have a duty to do such screening even when they don’t think it’s necessary for their bottom line?)

    We are not talking about screening. We are talking about suspicion of a crime. If an employer has reason to suspect that someone has robbed a bank, forget hiring or not hiring! aren’t they responsible for telling the police? Wouldn’t you do so even if you weren’t sure? And employers know full well that they are employing illegal aliens when they do so. Entering the country illegally is a crime. Why don’t the employers (and anybody else, for that matter) have a responsibility to report it to the authorities? There *is*, by the way, still an ICE hotline.

     That’s a good point, and one which rescued the point for me.  In hiring illegals, businesses collude with the illegal to gain through an illegal arrangement.  That makes it the business’ responsibility as well, in a way that an employee’s jaywalking habit does not aproach.

    • #92
  3. hawk@haakondahl.com Inactive
    hawk@haakondahl.com
    @BallDiamondBall

    Mike H:

    Michael Stopa:

    Midget Faded Rattlesnake:

    (Obviously, many employers believe that hiring only employees who’ve passed some sort of background check makes for a more productive workplace. But do employers have a duty to do such screening even when they don’t think it’s necessary for their bottom line?)

    We are not talking about screening. We are talking about suspicion of a crime. If an employer has reason to suspect that someone has robbed a bank, forget hiring or not hiring! aren’t they responsible for telling the police?

    Because illegal immigration is a statutory crime and not a violation of anyone’s property rights. “Call the police, this person wants to take a job without permission!” It’s childish.

     Just because it doesn’t meet the bar set by anarcho-whatever doesn’t mean it’s not valid.  By your measure, smuggling nuclear weapons and annexing national parks in the name of Aztlan is also not a problem.

    It’s not childish; it’s an indispensable part of running a system, and we do have a system, so that we do not fall into anarchy, which is the least stable, most brutal form of society.

    • #93
  4. TG Thatcher
    TG
    @TG

    Ball Diamond Ball:

    Mike H:

    I’m having trouble deciphering what you’re implying in your contrived example. … When you restrict immigration you are effectively raising wages by fiat.

    When you fail to control immigration, as any sane policy would, you are lowering wages by fiat. And TG’s “contrived examples” seemed like pretty straightforward illustrations.

     BDB, you may be giving my examples too much credit; I’m just noodling around with them, trying to see how the assertions about illegal immigrants being a net economic positive hold up – and my examples are very sketchy (not specific or detailed, I mean)

    Immigration (whether legal or illegal) increases labor supply; stated the other way, restrictions on immigration limit the labor supply.  So in a free market world, I would agree with Mike that the first-order effect of restricting immigration would be harmful distortions of the economy.

    *But* given the other distortions we deal with (and no one here is going to argue that welfare is not a huge economic distortion), the question gets more complex … And that’s why I won’t simply accept assertions that illegal immigrants are a net economic benefit.

    **edited for clarity**

    • #94
  5. user_280840 Inactive
    user_280840
    @FredCole

    Michael Stopa:

    We are not talking about screening. We are talking about suspicion of a crime. If an employer has reason to suspect that someone has robbed a bank, forget hiring or not hiring! aren’t they responsible for telling the police? Wouldn’t you do so even if you weren’t sure? And employers know full well that they are employing illegal aliens when they do so. Entering the country illegally is a crime. Why don’t the employers (and anybody else, for that matter) have a responsibility to report it to the authorities? There *is*, by the way, still an ICE hotline.

     We’re not talking about knowingly hiring a rapist to be a camp counselor.  We’re not talking about receiving of stolen goods.  We’re talking about hiring someone who has come to America to work and make a better life and in doing so violated laws that are impractical and unworkable.

    You agree with the law, fine.  But many others disagree and have no problem with a non violent person violating an unjust law.

    • #95
  6. user_280840 Inactive
    user_280840
    @FredCole

    Michael Stopa:

    To put that third Mercedes in the driveway? They should be ashamed of themselves.

     And now you’re making a class warfare argument?

    • #96
  7. TG Thatcher
    TG
    @TG

    Fred Cole:

    Michael Stopa:

    To put that third Mercedes in the driveway? They should be ashamed of themselves.

    And now you’re making a class warfare argument?

     Hmmm.  Fred, you talked about disobeying unjust laws … And using the word “unjust” implies that you recognize and most likely even follow some moral standards, I think (am I wrong?).  I infer from that, that you “care” about motivations (although you might judge that even if you “care,” you have no grounds for action).  If I have that right:  could you admit that perhaps Michael judging the motivations of some hypothetical person is not the same thing as advocatingclass warfare? 

    • #97
  8. Mike H Coolidge
    Mike H
    @MikeH

    Michael Stopa:

    And for what? To put that third Mercedes in the driveway? They should be ashamed of themselves.

    Lets take this for granted. That’s not all they are doing. They are also boosting the life of (probably several) impoverished persons by an order of magnitude. If they do that for selfish reasons, it has extremely altruistic consequences, only it’s to an out-group so it’s seen as taking from the mouths of the still relatively rich in-group.

    • #98
  9. A42NT1 Member
    A42NT1
    @

    E-Verify is an important tool, but is not the whole solution. Case in point: my employer is a manufacturer in the southwest US, and uses E-Verify for every hire (i.e., every hire came back “clean” on e-verify).  Trouble is, if we suspect any fraudulent documents are provided as proof of employment eligibility, there’s nothing we can do as an employer since they were “clean” per e-verify. Can’t go back and fire the guy. Nor can you resubmit docs to a special department for further validation.

    Then, eventually, your business is subject to an ICE audit, and lo and behold, the employees you suspected as having fraudulent docs are in fact determined to be illegals. Now you must fire them, and where do they go? They’re certainly not deported, no they go across town and work for your competitor and the cycle starts anew. 

    Moral – a program will never fix a process issue.

    • #99
  10. Mike H Coolidge
    Mike H
    @MikeH

    I just want to take a second and clarify that no on here on either side is impugning anyone’s motives. Everyone wants what’s best for everyone, but we disagree strongly about the best way to accomplish it.

    Those who want some amount (large or small) of immigration regulation feel the country is fragile and letting in large amounts of people risks disrupting the balance. This is rational given that a fast change is inherently unpredictable. They also believe in the primacy of countrymen, which has a track record spanning civilization.

    People who wish for something closer to open immigration believe there is enough evidence that the country will survive and be better, along with helping the truly impoverished. There will of course be some losers, but many many more winners. We believe western culture is a hardy weed that takes what’s best about other cultures and incorporates them (cultural imperialism for the win!) while discarding the rest. Those on the other side believe we are naive and history has too many examples that argue against our position.

    We’re all doing our best. We all want what’s best. No one has bad intentions.

    • #100
  11. Z in MT Member
    Z in MT
    @ZinMT

    Michael, 
    Thanks for taking on the anarcho-capitalist Ricochet mafia.  I am just waiting for the day when Fred Cole and Mike H. get mugged by reality.

    • #101
  12. user_280840 Inactive
    user_280840
    @FredCole

    Z in MT:

    Michael, Thanks for taking on the anarcho-capitalist Ricochet mafia. I am just waiting for the day when Fred Cole and Mike H. get mugged by reality.

     I’m not sure what to do with that…

    I mean, yeah, we’re organized.  (Well, Mike is anyway.)  Yeah, we’re criminals.  So I guess you could say what we do is organized crime.  

    I can’t speak for Mike, but I’m not Sicilian.  Judging by Mike’s last name, I’m gonna guess he isn’t.  So I’m not sure we’re “mafia”…

    • #102
  13. Michael Stopa Contributor
    Michael Stopa
    @MichaelStopa

    A42NT1:

    E-Verify is an important tool, but is not the whole solution. Case in point: my employer is a manufacturer in the southwest US, and uses E-Verify for every hire (i.e., every hire came back “clean” on e-verify). Trouble is, if we suspect any fraudulent documents are provided as proof of employment eligibility, there’s nothing we can do as an employer since they were “clean” per e-verify. Can’t go back and fire the guy. Nor can you resubmit docs to a special department for further validation.

    Then, eventually, your business is subject to an ICE audit, and lo and behold, the employees you suspected as having fraudulent docs are in fact determined to be illegals. Now you must fire them, and where do they go? They’re certainly not deported, no they go across town and work for your competitor and the cycle starts anew.

    Moral – a program will never fix a process issue.

     I agree with this point. It is true that E-Verify cannot catch people who actually have stolen someone’s identity. There are other glitches in E-Verify as well (false mismatches). But the benefit of using the system would so overwhelm those problems – would really put us on the path to a functioning immigration system –  that I think we should implement it and then start working more assiduously on the identity theft.

    In the same way, clearing the border of tens of thousands of illegal aliens seeking work makes finding the criminals transporting drugs a lot easier too.

    • #103
  14. Michael Stopa Contributor
    Michael Stopa
    @MichaelStopa

    Mike H:

    I just want to take a second and clarify that no on here on either side is impugning anyone’s motives. Everyone wants what’s best for everyone, but we disagree strongly about the best way to accomplish it.

    Those who want some amount (large or small) of immigration regulation feel the country is fragile and letting in large amounts of people risks disrupting the balance. This is rational given that a fast change is inherently unpredictable. They also believe in the primacy of countrymen, which has a track record spanning civilization.

    People who wish for something closer to open immigration believe there is enough evidence that the country will survive and be better, along with helping the truly impoverished. There will of course be some losers, but many many more winners. We believe western culture is a hardy weed that takes what’s best about other cultures and incorporates them (cultural imperialism for the win!) while discarding the rest. Those on the other side believe we are naive and history has too many examples that argue against our position.

    We’re all doing our best. We all want what’s best. No one has bad intentions.

     Mike, I appreciate this.

    But your comment raises one additional point. There are those, of whom I am one, who believe that indeed something closer to open immigration is beneficial at least if the people coming are (a) not allowed to take any welfare and (b) are screened for diseases, etc.; but who believe nevertheless that the path to such a more immigrant-welcoming country cannot begin with amnesty of lawbreakers.

    In other words, we believe genuinely that the issue is not more or fewer immigrants. It is the rule of law and the precedent of abandoning our laws because we’ve been bum-rushed out of them.

    • #104
  15. Z in MT Member
    Z in MT
    @ZinMT

    Fred Cole:

    Z in MT:

    Michael, Thanks for taking on the anarcho-capitalist Ricochet mafia. I am just waiting for the day when Fred Cole and Mike H. get mugged by reality.

    I’m not sure what to do with that…

    I mean, yeah, we’re organized. (Well, Mike is anyway.) Yeah, we’re criminals. So I guess you could say what we do is organized crime.

    I can’t speak for Mike, but I’m not Sicilian. Judging by Mike’s last name, I’m gonna guess he isn’t. So I’m not sure we’re “mafia”…

     You are not supposed to do anything with it.  I was conveying to Michael that the majority of the posters on this thread seem to be coming from the what I have observed is a distinct anarcho-capitalist cadre on Ricochet (I know you haven’t self-labeled this way but Mike H. has, and the more I read your posts I think this label fits).  My other comment is based on my belief that the anarcho-capitalist mindset is naive and poorly takes into account the reality of the character of most people in the world.

    • #105
  16. Midget Faded Rattlesnake Contributor
    Midget Faded Rattlesnake
    @Midge

    Michael Stopa:

    There are those, of whom I am one, who believe that indeed something closer to open immigration is beneficial at least if the people coming are (a) not allowed to take any welfare and (b) are screened for diseases, etc.; but…

    OK. On the other hand, you also said this:

    @Tuck, the  only  reason illegal aliens come to the United States is to work. If they can’t do that, they will go home. 

    If that were literally true, then why worry about welfare? Illegals wouldn’t use it. They’d just go home.

    I think it’s possible that you inadvertently made more use than you realize of “they’re taking our jobs” rhetoric in your earlier posts. This set off alarm bells for some of us. If your real concern is non-citizens’ access to the welfare state, why not just come out and say so?

    • #106
  17. Z in MT Member
    Z in MT
    @ZinMT

    We’re all doing our best. We all want what’s best. No one has bad intentions.

    This is the naivety I am talking about.  Not everyone in society is doing their best, not everyone in society want what’s best, there are people with bad intentions.

    These are the people that we should exclude from staying in our country.  These are the business owners that should be punished for breaking the law to gain an advantage on their competition.

    Yes clearly, with the current and former administrations not enforcing the current immigration laws it seems pointless to pass new law.

    • #107
  18. Mike H Coolidge
    Mike H
    @MikeH

    Michael Stopa:  

    Mike, I appreciate this. But your comment raises one additional point. There are those, of whom I am one, who believe that indeed something closer to open immigration is beneficial at least if the people coming are (a) not allowed to take any welfare and (b) are screened for diseases, etc.; but who believe nevertheless that the path to such a more immigrant-welcoming country cannot begin with amnesty of lawbreakers. In other words, we believe genuinely that the issue is not more or fewer immigrants. It is the rule of law and the precedent of abandoning our laws because we’ve been bum-rushed out of them.

     Well, then lets use this to find some agreement. That’s awesome that you’re open to keyhole solutions. I too have no problem with denying immigrants (or citizens) welfare, or a requirement of a physical, or go through some small amount of background screening and vastly reducing the wait times. 

    I hate the illegal immigration/amnesty debate. I see it as a huge distraction. It’s true I don’t see them as a disproportionate threat like most, but I wish we could focus on vastly increasing legal immigration.

    • #108
  19. Michael Stopa Contributor
    Michael Stopa
    @MichaelStopa

    Midget Faded Rattlesnake:

    Michael Stopa:

    There are those, of whom I am one, who believe that indeed something closer to open immigration is beneficial at least if the people coming are (a) not allowed to take any welfare and (b) are screened for diseases, etc.; but…

    OK. On the other hand, you also said this:

    @Tuck, the only reason illegal aliens come to the United States is to work. If they can’t do that, they will go home.

    If that were literally true, then why worry about welfare? Illegals wouldn’t use it. They’d just go home.

    I think it’s possible that you inadvertently made more use than you realize of “they’re taking our jobs” rhetoric in your earlier posts. This set off alarm bells for some of us. If your real concern is non-citizens’ access to the welfare state, why not just come out and say so?

     This is confusing. My position is “it’s a floor wax *and* a whipped topping!”

    I don’t want illegal aliens taking jobs from Americans and I don’t want them coming here and taking welfare. Some here in Massachusetts evidently do *both*!

    But my real concern is that we not reward people for breaking the law. You learn in kindergarten that it’s the *bad* kids who cut in line (or who help them do so).

    • #109
  20. Mike H Coolidge
    Mike H
    @MikeH

    Z in MT:

    We’re all doing our best. We all want what’s best. No one has bad intentions.

    This is the naivety I am talking about. Not everyone in society is doing their best, not everyone in society want what’s best, there are people with bad intentions.

    Do you think I was talking about society and not reaching out to the specific Ricocheti on this thread immediately before you started tossing ad hominems?

    • #110
  21. Midget Faded Rattlesnake Contributor
    Midget Faded Rattlesnake
    @Midge

    Z in MT:

    Michael, Thanks for taking on the anarcho-capitalist Ricochet mafia. I am just waiting for the day when Fred Cole and Mike H. get mugged by reality….

    …My other comment is based on my belief that the anarcho-capitalist mindset is naive and poorly takes into account the reality of the character of most people in the world.

    It’s just possible that different people respond to getting mugged by reality differently – and that some people begin taking anarcho-capitalist ideas more seriously  because  they’ve been mugged by reality.

    For most of my life I would have dismissed anything with an anarchist label out of hand as either silly or wicked. But the more disillusioned I become about the possibility of virtuous government (and who here doesn’t have reason to be disillusioned about this?), the less easy it becomes to dismiss anarcho-capitalists as crazy.

    Of course  you believe that people with a different worldview from yours are naive and not taking into account real human nature. Most people do (including anarcho-capitalists), because most people seek out their particular worldview in order to make sense of human nature.

    • #111
  22. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Fred Cole:

    I live in upstate New York. If I got a new job, as part of the paperwork, I have to prove that I’m a US citizen. That’s to make sure that I, a man living in upstate New York, two thousand miles from Mexico, am not an illegal alien from Mexico.

    Does that make sense to you? 

    Can I assume you are making some form of a federalism argument in favor of immigration being handled at a state level?  

    Otherwise your argument would appear to be that because this isn’t an issue for you in New York, Arizona is screwed.

    • #112
  23. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Fred Cole:

    I suspect that it is not something that can be reliably calculated. Let it stand that the economic productivity of an illegal immigrant in the work force is greater than zero.

     You hopefully also suspect that they are overwhelmingly poor, and their labor is not worth the artificially high cost imposed by the government by way of minimum wage, mandatory health insurance, etc.

    Does your calculation of their added value to the economy include their drain on education, hospitals and welfare programs once legalized, yet unable to work because the government has priced them out of the labor market?

    I could take your position on this issue more seriously if you were advocating more immigration once we undo these aspects of our government.  Since you don’t factor them, I have to call this Utopian day dreaming.

    • #113
  24. hawk@haakondahl.com Inactive
    hawk@haakondahl.com
    @BallDiamondBall

    Z in MT:

    We’re all doing our best. We all want what’s best. No one has bad intentions.

    This is the naivety I am talking about. Not everyone in society is doing their best, not everyone in society want what’s best, there are people with bad intentions.

    These are the people that we should exclude from staying in our country. These are the business owners that should be punished for breaking the law to gain an advantage on their competition.

    Yes clearly, with the current and former administrations not enforcing the current immigration laws it seems pointless to pass new law.

     There are people in every group who do not want what is best.  This group is no different.

    • #114
  25. user_280840 Inactive
    user_280840
    @FredCole

    Frank Soto:

    Fred Cole:

    I suspect that it is not something that can be reliably calculated. Let it stand that the economic productivity of an illegal immigrant in the work force is greater than zero.

    You hopefully also suspect that they are overwhelmingly poor, and their labor is not worth the artificially high cost imposed by the government by way of minimum wage, mandatory health insurance, etc.

    Does your calculation of their added value to the economy

    No.  Go back and read what I was responding to.

    • #115
  26. Midget Faded Rattlesnake Contributor
    Midget Faded Rattlesnake
    @Midge

    Frank Soto:

    I could take your position on this issue more seriously if you were advocating more immigration once we undo these aspects of our government. Since you don’t factor them [in], I have to call this Utopian day dreaming.

    Is there ever a time when Fred  doesn’t  want to undo these aspects of our government (e.g, minimum wage laws, employer mandates, the regulatory and welfare states)? This is Fred, after all.

    Even when people agree on policy, they can disagree on the strategy necessary to implement that policy. Do we wait until before or after illegal immigration is addressed to roll back the regulatory-welfare state? To me, that’s a question of strategy, and disagreement on strategy doesn’t carry the same moral weight as disagreement about core values.

    Is it so weird for someone to believe that, if we took care of the regulatory-welfare state, the burdens illegals impose on the citizenry would largely take care of themselves?

    After all, illegals aren’t the only ones whose use of the welfare state undermines their net contribution to society. Citizens, too, have their net productivity undermined by resorting to government programs (including state schools).

    • #116
  27. user_280840 Inactive
    user_280840
    @FredCole

    If we’re talking about the drain on our society, natives use welfare services at higher rates than immigrants, so…

    • #117
  28. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Fred Cole:

    Frank Soto:

    Fred Cole:

    I suspect that it is not something that can be reliably calculated. Let it stand that the economic productivity of an illegal immigrant in the work force is greater than zero.

    You hopefully also suspect that they are overwhelmingly poor, and their labor is not worth the artificially high cost imposed by the government by way of minimum wage, mandatory health insurance, etc.

    Does your calculation of their added value to the economy

    No. Go back and read what I was responding to.

     I did Fred, but your position is that immigration should be essentially limitless, even if we can’t change any other aspect of american law.  You’ve made that clear in past threads.  

    That’s why I call it Utopian.  You are unconcerned with the circumstances into which you drop an unlimited supply of poor immigrants.  You calculate in a vacuum that their presence does X good for the economy, and don’t factor real world problems that mitigate those benefits.

    • #118
  29. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Fred Cole:

    If we’re talking about the drain on our society, natives use welfare services at higher rates than immigrants, so…

     …so more strain will put our budget in a better position?  

    I believe the free movement of labor would be very beneficial to us if we can remove a lot of regulation, and undo parts of the welfare state.   Let’s not put the cart before the horse though.

    • #119
  30. user_280840 Inactive
    user_280840
    @FredCole

    Frank Soto:

    Fred Cole:

    Frank Soto:

    Fred Cole:

    I suspect that it is not something that can be reliably calculated. Let it stand that the economic productivity of an illegal immigrant in the work force is greater than zero.

    You hopefully also suspect that they are overwhelmingly poor, and their labor is not worth the artificially high cost imposed by the government by way of minimum wage, mandatory health insurance, etc.

    Does your calculation of their added value to the economy

    No. Go back and read what I was responding to.

    I did Fred, but your position is that immigration should be essentially limitless, even if we can’t change any other aspect of american law. You’ve made that clear in past threads.

    That’s why I call it Utopian. You are unconcerned with the circumstances into which you drop an unlimited supply of poor immigrants. You calculate in a vacuum that their presence does X good for the economy, and don’t factor real world problems that mitigate those benefits.

     And what I was responding to was the OP’s calculation which included zero benefit added to the economy.

    • #120
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