Immigration

Wrong Compromise on Welfare and Immigration

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Over at Huffington Post, Competitive Enterprise Institute's Alex Nowrasteh has an interesting piece pointing out that contrary to conventional restrictionist nonsense, immigrants are not a drain the welfare state. He notes:

The American welfare state is designed to aid the elderly, female, and sick. Immigrants, especially undocumented immigrants, are young, male, and healthy. Therefore, undocumented immigrants account for a much smaller share of welfare spending than their population size would suggest. All immigrants are less likely to move to states with large welfare programs in recent years.

A 2006 RAND Corporation study, published in Health Affairs, found that in Los Angeles County immigrants, especially the undocumented, were about half as likely as natives to have chronic health conditions. Furthermore, while immigrants were almost half of L.A. County's population, they accounted for only one third of the region's total health care spending. A 2007 study in the Archives of Internal Medicine showed that Mexican and other Hispanic immigrants had many fewer doctor and hospital visits on average than native-born Americans. Another 2007 study by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that low-income immigrants primarily relied upon clinics and health centers for care and used emergency rooms less often than American citizens.

The 1996 welfare reform law cut back welfare access for legal immigrants and virtually ended it for all undocumented immigrants with some exceptions for emergency care. Yet even among eligible immigrants, consumption of welfare services is lower than among citizens. More recently, 57 percent of citizens eligible for Medicaid had enrolled in the program, compared to only 30 percent of eligible immigrants.

All of this is consistent with what President Bush's late press secretary Tony Snow and I wrote in this issue of Reason. For a more updated discussion, see "Immigration and the Welfare State" by Dan Griswold in the Cato Journal.

That said, I disagree with the second half of Nowrasteh's piece. He throws down the gauntlet and asks liberals to choose between the welfare state and immigration because so long as the welfare state is alive, the American public won't be comfortable with immigration. This is wrong for two reasons:

One: Liberals will almost certainly choose the welfare state. Consider Canada. For the last half a century, Canada has been a more welcoming place for immgrants than this land of immigrants. Yet, it has started requiring prospective immigrants to get a pretty intrusive medical exam to ensure that they won't become a burden on the national health care system. Immigrants with pre-existing conditions have not a prayer of being admitted to Canada, but not too many progressives seem too bothered. Indeed, does anyone seriously believe that liberals will agree to kiss goodbye to their beloved ObamaCare because it might lead to more restrictionist immigration policies in the future? They will gladly throw a few immigrants under the Ellis Island ferry to keep the welfare juggernaut on track.

Our best bet for moving toward more open borders and a smaller welfare state is by fighting these battles on separate fronts. It is too clever by half to try and kill two birds with one stone by playing liberals' nominal concern for immigrants against their massive love of the welfare state. We'll end up with two dead birds in our hands.

Two:  Nowrasteh's whole piece is about how the data show that welfare use by immigrants is a non-issue. Yet he says we should "build a wall around the welfare state…further restricting its use by immigrants." But legal and illegal immigrants are by and large not entitled to means-tested benefits except for emergency use, thanks to the 1996 welfare reform act. What more should we wall them off from? Schools? Roads?

Also, Nowratesh contends that we should make sure that immigrants "pay a certain amount in taxes before using it (welfare)." That's odd. Immigrants already pay a lot in taxes. No one disputes that high-skilled immigrants pay far more in taxes than they consume in services. Heck, even immigrants who are just high-school graduates pay more in taxes than they consume in services.

What's more, all undocumented immigrants pay sales property taxes and 62 percent pay income taxes and 66 percent Social Security taxes. Are we really comfortable with giving the government the power to withhold basic services from a certain subset of the taxpaying public? Or decide how much is enough in taxes before someone becomes entitled to services?

It is perfectly respectable to respond to restrictionists who worry about immigrants becoming a drain on the welfare system by saying: "Well, then, get rid of the welfare state." It is quite another to say: "well, then, get immigrants off welfare." The first will lead to a net diminution of government power. The second a net increase.

Liberal immigration policies are an important cause for liberty lovers. But whatever compromises are needed to advance that cause – and there are plenty that we'll have to make – they shouldn't give the government more powers to go after more people for more reasons.

NEXT: When the First Amendment Collides with Organized Labor

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  1. I hereby declare this sure-to-be contentious immigration thread open for business.

    1. I’d suggest readers put aside their different opinions on immigration and focus on what Shikha is saying about the welfare state. I (almost) can’t believe this shit is in Reason.

      1. I’d suggest readers put aside their different opinions…

        Now that’s what I can’t believe would be in Reason (at least in the comments).

  2. I’ll get the ball rolling.

    We should tax the rich and corporations to pay immigrants to come here illegally, sign up for welfare, subsidize their not speaking English, and provide tax incentives for our companies to replace American workers with them.

    We will then provide unlimited access to abortion, contraception, and vouchers for solar panels and electric cars. Additionally, they will be formed into an illegal immigrant labor union whose members use drugs and will advocate for laws enforcing healthy food.

    Also, fried chicken.

    1. Well done. I think that covers everything. Especially fried chicken.

      1. Actually I did think of a couple of things I left out; the illegal immigrant labor union will also have a SuperPAC through which they fund campaign spending limit legislation and climate change studies.

        1. So, business as usual.

  3. No one could dare question my open borders bona fides – after all, I am an anarcho-free enterprise-individualist and do not believe that there should be any borders.

    However, please do not count on me to buy the bullshit that immigrants, legal, illegal, documented, undocumented or otherwise, do not contribute to the ever expanding welfare state.

    Please do not insult our intelligence by conflating a couple of studies with reality.

    1. Please do not insult our intelligence by conflating a couple of studies with reality.

      I do not think that word means what you think it does. Perhaps you meant to say “beliefs”.

      1. No, I am not conflating the studies with “beliefs” – but the reality to which most of us here can attest.

        Take Hazelton, PA. Do you think that the town is spending more or less than it did ten years ago on remedial english, bi-lingual education, etc?

        It has gone from near zero to a million dollars or slightly more – per year.

    2. However, please do not count on me to buy the bullshit that immigrants, legal, illegal, documented, undocumented or otherwise, do not contribute to the ever expanding welfare state.

      I can’t really think of anything my wife has done to expand the welfare state except for getting a job, and thus, giving the American government another paycheck to rape.

      So fuck you, Mikey.

      1. I think he may have been talking about the cumulative effect, rather than claiming that no immigrant has ever been a net benefit.

        1. I think he may have been talking about the cumulative effect, rather than claiming that no immigrant has ever been a net benefit.

          If that’s what he’s claiming, he should have worded it differently. Not that I would agree with that statement either.

      2. No need to be nasty.

        Did I post that “ALL” immigrants……

        Heck, my statement can be applied to the aggregate of native born americans.

        1. immigrants, legal, illegal, documented, undocumented or otherwise,

          Did I post that “ALL” immigrants……

          Ummm…what other types of immigrants are their?

    3. I think that the post is more aimed toward anti-immigration conservatives than open borders libertarians. The point that immigrants pay more into the welfare state than they take, on the whole, may be valid. It makes sense given that a lot of illegal immigrants pay taxes, but don’t get anything back. But you are right that that does nothing to actually reduce the welfare state or that the presence of more people, of whatever origin does expand the welfare state. I tend to agree with the author that the welfare state and immigration should be treated as separate problems.

    4. Not to mention that the studies cited prove nothing:

      Furthermore, while immigrants were almost half of L.A. County’s population, they accounted for only one third of the region’s total health care spending

      No shit Sherlock, but total health care spending =! govt healthcare spending

      A 2007 study in the Archives of Internal Medicine showed that Mexican and other Hispanic immigrants had many fewer doctor and hospital visits on average than native-born Americans.

      Again, its not about how many times you visited the doctor, its about who paid when you did.

      1. On top of that, the way undocumented immigrants get TEH WELFAIRZ is through their kids. Mom and Dad are undocumented, therefore have no verifiable income as far as the state is concerned. Therefore, when they have kids, they get a TANF check per child because it looks to the state like there is this poor brown kid growing up in an income-less household when the reality is that both parents, while making crappy wages, are making some wages, just Uncle Scam ain’t getting the report.

    5. According to the study, the illegals only (ONLY dammit!) account for 1/3 of total health care spending. What’s a few billion dollars, it could be worse.

  4. But don’t many immigrants bring their families (including elderly relatives) here once they’re established? And isn’t any drain on the social services that taxpayers are paying for (whether we want to or not) still a drain? Look, I’m all for abolishing borders and allowing people to move back and forth as they wish, but only after our socialist system of entitlements (usually provided to people who haven’t paid for them) has been abolished. Until then, the laws on the books (right or wrong) should be enforced, or repealed altogether.

    1. But don’t many immigrants bring their families (including elderly relatives) here once they’re established?

      Ummm, no. Do you realize how hard it is for a naturalized citizen to bring non-dependent, non-child relatives over? Even if they qualify, it takes a good 10 to 20 years for them to be able to come.

      1. I think he meant they go back and run across the fence with their elderly disabled grandparents. This scenario seems unlikely to me.

        1. As I said to the other clueless wonder, their parents and elderly relatives come here to visit and never go back. Very few illegal immigrants sneak across the border.

      2. There you go, thinking like a law-abiding citizen. Their relatives come here and visit on ‘vacation’ and never go back. That’s how most illegal immigrants (from all over the world) wind up here.

        1. Their relatives come here and visit on ‘vacation’ and never go back.

          Again, do you know the requirements to get a Tourist visa? Pretty impossible for most 3rd Worlders…not that visa fraud like that doesn’t happen, but you only find that with people who are middle-class in their own countries.

          1. Why is it pretty impossible for most 3rd worlders, other than perhaps that most 3rd worlders can’t afford a vacation in the US to begin with?

            1. Because the US makes it extremely hard to qualify for one.

              1. Perhaps you could be a little more vague.

                1. Being married to a foreigner I have family members who have attempted to get tourist visas and were denied. A SIL was told no because she ‘might meet someone, get married and stay in the US’.

                  You have to show sufficient income AND assets within your home country AND be of the ‘correct age’.

                  1. I’ll add that the process is extremely arbitrary. In many cases it depends on the interviewer and how they’re feeling.

    2. I’m sure some do bring their families. Some also have no plans to stay permanently and just want to make some money so that they can get ahead at home (this, by the way, is only discouraged by making temporary work visas hard to get).
      I am convinced that making it easy to come and go for temporary work would greatly reduce the number of immigrants who plan to stay for good. If it is really hard to cross the border, people will only want to do it once.

  5. Fibertarians lie again! Proof of the libtard anti-mustache GamBol lockdown here! http://www.nocirc.org HAH!..Here is another oNe! http://www.incredibleegg.org/DeviledEgg Libtard cITy/statists CAN’Tanswer this one either can you? WAAH! Call the KOch brotherS! No one can refute my LOgic. Why won’t anyone answer ME? AFRAID?

  6. But what about illegal Simmigrants?

    1. They produce things like this.

  7. By and large they’re also not paying taxes, as they’re using an assumed SSN or TIN and claiming enough exemptions that they don’t get anything withheld (assuming they’re not paid under the table entirely).

    So ANY welfare expenditure to them is a net drain. Whether it’s 10% or 20% or 30% of them drawing benefits only determines how big that drain is.

    1. Oops, missed this tidbit.

      What’s more, all undocumented immigrants pay sales property taxes and 62 percent pay income taxes and 66 percent Social Security taxes.

      Source?

      1. There’s never any mention of what happens to people whose Social Security numbers are ‘borrowed’ by illegal immigrants. Every dollar earned with that fraudulent number is attributed to the true owner and those unfortunate souls are required to pay income tax on it, or somehow prove they didn’t earn that additional money. I know for a fact this goes on since it happened to a friend of mine, and he had a heck of a time trying to prove that while he served in the Air Force in California, he wasn’t also moonlighting and earning money on the side in New York.

        1. That’s a good argument for allowing illegal immigrants to get a TIN from the IRS so they don’t have to steal a SSN.

          1. Sounds like self-incrimination to me; having to register with the federal govt that you’re breaking federal law. Oh, wait, you want the govt to not only tolerate lawbreaking but enable it.

      2. The sales and property taxes are common sense. They generally buy things at stores (sales tax), and they usually live somewhere (property tax; even if they’re renting, whoever owns the place is paying taxes, like for any other renter).

        Not sure about the others.

        1. What about the states with no sales tax?

          Oh, according to Shikha’s authoritative “sources” they don’t have any immigrants.

        2. There’s no sales tax on bread, milk, fruit, and other necessities, which is presumably what immigrants are spending most of their money on.

          The property tax thing is indirect, and only holds if lack of illegal immigrants would mean no one rents that place.

          1. There’s no sales tax on bread, milk, fruit, and other necessities, which is presumably what immigrants are spending most of their money on.

            There is food sales tax in a lot of states. Well, not if you are using WIC or SNAP.

            1. On basic staples? I’ve never lived in a state that had a tax on ordinary bread or milk. Bagels and chocolate milk are another story, but that’s because they’re “enhanced”.

              1. Yes.In TN,LA, AL, MS it can be as high as 10% on basic food sales taxes. Between 2-3% here in GA.

              2. We used to in NYC, but the sales tax on food was repealed decades ago. They put in an income tax instead.

      3. Source?

        Shikha doesn’t rely on anything that might not support her argument such as “sources”.

        1. Hard to cherry-pick when there aren’t any cherries.

    2. It’s amazing how much documentation there is about undocumented immigrants!

      1. Someone needs to make an undocumentary about them.

      2. The social science is settled.

    3. By and large they’re also not paying taxes, as they’re using an assumed SSN or TIN and claiming enough exemptions that they don’t get anything withheld

      My wife got her SSN on arrival at JFK airport.

      Oh, wait. In the pronoun “they’re,” you conflated the word “immigrant,” as used in the article with term “illegal immigrant.” Your Freudian slip reveals just how miserable a piece of shit you are.

      1. Just so that we are on the same page,GOOD FOR YOUR WIFE, though it sucks that she must assist in the financing of the welfare state.

        Native born americans, daily, add to the welfare state burden and in much greater fashion than immigrants.

        1. Native born americans, daily, add to the welfare state burden and in much greater fashion than immigrants.

          I agree with you there.

      2. This article is about “undocumented immigrants”, sunshine. That’s what “they” refers to here, as would be obvious to someone without an agenda.

    4. Oh… ‘by and large’… sounds definitive.

  8. “We acquired date from the 2003 California Health Interview Survey, with 42,044 particiapnts”

    1. representative of noninstitutionalized households.”

      This from the Archives of Internal medicine link.

      So, let’s make a grand, sweeping statement of fact predicated upon a “survey” of 42,044 households. How about providing a copy or link to the 2003 survey? It would be nice to view the questions posed.

      Moreover, I have no reason to take at face value the responses of those surveyed. For one, many of them may have lied for the simple reason that they did not want to be ICE-d.

      Studies, schmudies.

      Not impressed.

      1. So basically your counterargument is “LA LA LA, I CAN’T HEAR YOU! LA, LA, LA!”

        1. No, it is not.

          However, as I posted a minute ago,

          NATIVE BORN AMERICANS EVERY DAY ADD MUCH MORE TO THE WELFARE STATE BURDEN THAN IMMIGRANTS.

          Geeshhhhhh………

          1. Then why are you so suspicious of the studies? Anecdotally, I would figure that Mexican and Hispanic immigrants (legal or illegal) are not going to the doctor much due to the fact that they can afford the time to take off from work.

          2. Heroic M, my beef is with the REASONING of this article, the basis upon which Ms. Dalmia promulgates her assertions.

            In particular, I find it objectionable for any person to shout that X is a fact and that any denials of the same are ill informed and then cite a study as if its gospel and the last word in the subject.

            I have made the same point in many other posts regarding various and sundry topics.

            1. In particular, I find it objectionable for any person to shout that X is a fact and that any denials of the same are ill informed and then cite a study as if its gospel and the last word in the subject.

              Yes, but we’re not talking about Global Warming here. 🙂

            2. HM, I have no beef with anybody who wants to come to the US or any other place. IMO, each and every person has a natural right to travel anywhere, without identification and unmolested by any badge wearing creep.

              1. You may know that I am one of the more ardent anarchists here. My views sometimes offend the immigrants who have “followed all the rules” because, well, I’m okay with the immigrants who have not.

              2. Sorry if I’m a little prickly, but I’ve had to deal a lot with the assumption that just because I brought my wife here, we’re getting all sorts of services and benefits. We’ve got squat. In fact, we’ve paid about 8,000 bucks to the government in fees just for her to be here on a marriage visa, and then permanent residency. Add that to the Affidavit of Support I had to sign, which means that we cannot get public assistance, even if we would otherwise qualify, and I take umbrage to the notion that legal immigrants increase the welfare state, except in the way Dalmia described, i.e. giving the government more power over people’s lives.

                1. Your wife is going through the legal channels, and legal immigrants tend to not be a significant welfare burden.

                  The way illegal immigrants receive the dole is through their children. The state sees a child in an income-less family due to both parents working under assumed citizen identities, and therefore, they qualify to receive TANF because the child is a legal natural born citizen and the parents’ income is off the books.

                  All of this isn’t a slight on the illegal immigrants themselves, most people ain’t gonna turn down free shit. This is a slight on the welfare state and the current “keep em in the shadows” mentality. If you provide them with some form of TIN, you can then parse out a whole bunch of outright TANF fraud.

                2. HM, you have to lighten up. While I realize that the stereotype here is that you either support open borders or hate immigrants it simply isn’t that simple.

                  Unlike LibertyMike, I am not an anarchist. I do not believe that people have a natural, negative right to immigrate. That being said, my opposition to illegal immigration is in support of your and Jim’s, and my nephew’s wives, ie legal immigrants. They follow the rules and get fucked. While I understand how you could easily forgive all of the cheaters to get the government to fuck off and don’t blame you, as a policy position, it perpetrates more wrong than simply fixing the legal immigration problem, IMO.

  9. The American welfare state is designed to aid the elderly, female, and sick. Immigrants, especially undocumented immigrants, are young, male, and healthy.

    Then why the hell are 70% of the births at Parkland in Dallas by illegal immigrants who aren’t young and male?

    1. I know this should have been explained to you before, but when a boy illegal immigrant and a girl illegal immigrant love each other very much…

      1. Try reading it again. Perhaps more slowly and with emphasis on what each of the words mean: “Immigrants, especially undocumented immigrants, are young, male, and healthy.”

        Now, once you have full comprehension of the sentence, ask yourself how it square with illegal immigrants giving birth.

        As you are apparently new to reading, I’ll give you a hint to aid your analysis: the illegal immigrants giving birth are not male.

        1. …the illegal immigrants giving birth are not male.

          [citation needed]

        2. First, 11,000 << 12,000,000.

          Second, sometimes comments are meant to be funny.

          1. First, it’s only one hospital.

            Second, it’s gotten to the point where what used to be parody is now understatement, so it’s hard to tell the difference between some honestly held positions and humor.

            If yours was meant to be humor, my bad.

            1. …it’s only one hospital.

              It is also (a) the hospital with the most births in the country and (b) the hospital in Texas that cares least about the legality of its patients’ residence.

              1. JPS in Fort Worth is right there with it. Parkland might be the most extreme, but it’s not the only one with such a policy.

                Moreover, my point is that there are plenty of female illegal immigrants so “Immigrants, especially undocumented immigrants, are young, male, and healthy” is just a bad, bad starting point.

          2. Second, sometimes comments are meant to be funny.

            Especially after they’re shown to be wrong…

        3. I don’t think that sentence was meant to be taken literally as written. But yes, you are technically correct.

          1. Even if the ratio of female to male illegal immigrants is low, the absolute number is high.

            Additionally, if the male to female ratio is high, then illegals as a group are disproportionately more violent, especially if the young male demographic is highly overrepresented.

          2. So now we’ve got “I was joking” and “It wasn’t supposed to be taken literally” as excuses for rank falsehoods from the open borders crowd.

            1. Are you seriously suggesting that when the obvious statement of an extremely old and intentionally humorous meme constitutes the entirety of the comment — and does not even directly address the claim it is responding to — it represents a rank falsehood?

              1. In the context, it’s clearly an attempt to paint NEM as a fool who doesn’t realize that births require male contributions. The humor was subordinate to the false mockery.

                1. Sorry. That was not my intent. It was an attempt to explain why the people who are giving birth are females as the conclusion of the birds-and-the-bees conversation points out.

                  1. So now it WASN’T a joke. Get your story straight.

                    Pretty sure NEM knew that the people giving birth were females; it’s your pal Shikha that’s confused on the point, if not lying.

                    1. Do I have to use the word “humorous” in every sentence? Actually, since it appears your internet humor filter is working in overdrive, how do you know I didn’t?

                      Let’s try again…

                      <nostriphumor>
                      It was a humorous attempt to explain humorously why the people who are giving birth are females as the conclusion of the humorous meme of the birds-and-the-bees conversation points out.

                      It was a humorous response to the humorous comment that, empirically, the people giving birth at Parkland are not male.
                      </nostriphumor>

  10. it has started requiring prospective immigrants to get a pretty intrusive medical exam to ensure that they won’t become a burden on the national health care system.

    Coming Soon to a democratic republic near you! Citizen flavors available!

  11. I still cannot grok the liberal/progressive erection for large welfare state programs. It just baffles me. I guess they must think people would starve if government stopped shelling out 1.5 trillion or so on SS, medicare, medicaid, etc.

  12. Don’t ignore me! Look at me! I can cut and paste some of the same irrelevant gibberish from five minutes ago!…Fibertarians lie! Proof of the libtard anti-mustache GamBol lockdown here! http://www.nocirc.org HAH!..Here is another oNe! http://www.incredibleegg.org/DeviledEgg Libtard cITy/statists CAN’Tanswer this one either can you? WAAH! Call the KOch brotherS! No one can refute my LOgic. Why won’t anyone answer ME? AFRAID?

  13. This makes a lot of sense dude.

    http://www.Went-Anon.tk

  14. Here I go again! ..THIS time twice as many DEviled egG recIPe links!…Fibertarians lie! Proof of the libtard anti-mustache GamBol lockdown here! http://www.nocirc.org HAH!..Here is another oNe! http://www.incredibleegg.org/DeviledEgg ….and this one http://www.deviledeggs.com Libtard cITy/statists CAN’T answer this one either can you? Can I interest you in a family HIStory link…www.ancientfaces.com/research/surname/Godesky…. CITY/STATISTS lie about EVerything!

  15. The answer is two-fold:

    (1) Terminate the welfare state

    (2) Open borders, baby!

    This post was approved by Murray Rothbard.

    Happy Birthday, you intellectual giant!

  16. Canada more welcoming? Have you read their requirements?

  17. This article is disingenuous as fuck. The 1996 welfare restrictions on legal resident aliens have been rolled back to be meaningless. Refugee visa immigrants are signed up for the panoply of social welfare benefits by their sponsors as soon as they arrive.

    1. So “refugee” equals all “legal resident aliens”?

      1. Did I say that? Refugee visa holders are a large subset of our legal immigrant population.

          1. From your link:

            Refugees compose about one-tenth of the total annual immigration to the United States,

            A total of 73,293 persons were admitted to the United States as refugees during 2010.

            73,293 is a bit more than “half” 80,000.

            10% is a “large subset” when you rank the various subsets.

  18. Are we really comfortable with giving the government the power to withhold basic services from a certain subset of the taxpaying public?
    Note the context:
    “basic services” = welfare

    Immigration aside Shikha is arguing all residents are entitled to “basic services”.

    Shikha is arguing in favor of the welfare state.

  19. But whatever compromises are needed to advance that cause ? and there are plenty that we’ll have to make ? they shouldn’t give the government more powers to go after more people for more reasons.
    Once again, context:
    “Go after” = not pay welfare

  20. I seem to agree and disagree with both authors.

    I’d say those universal services that aren’t means tested — K-12 education, emergency health care, and, yes, roads, et al. — should be available to immigrants, legal or illegal.

    In this way I agree with Shikha Dalmia that immigrants, even illegal, should not be treated as second class residents.

    I’d say all means-tested or targeted welfare — TANF, food stamps, Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, etc. — should not be available to immigrants, legal or illegal, or their citizen children, for some very long period on the order of 18-20 years.

    In this way I’m with Alex Nowrasteh that the vast offerings of government largesse should be put behind a wall so it is not a potential or actual draw for immigration.

    1. In this way I agree with Shikha Dalmia that immigrants, even illegal, should not be treated as second class residents.

      You share Dalmia’s penchant for melodramatic hyperbole. Of course they’re second-class residents; their residence is illegal according to the laws of the community that occupies this territory. Sort of like illegal drivers are second-class drivers.

      And as usual, you become the thing you castigate:

      I’d say all means-tested or targeted welfare — TANF, food stamps, Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, etc. — should not be available to immigrants, legal or illegal, or their citizen children, for some very long period on the order of 18-20 years.

      So US citizens should be treated as second-class because of who their parents are?

      SS and Medicare require 35 years of contributions, no? Doesn’t seem like much of a draw for immigrants anyway.

      1. Of course they’re second-class residents; their residence is illegal according to the laws of the community that occupies this territory.

        If you’d read what I wrote, I would put both legal and illegal immigrants under the same welfare regime. None of them are second-class with regard to the services that are universally available.

        So US citizens should be treated as second-class because of who their parents are?

        No, they should not be treated as second-class. They simply should be ineligible for targeted welfare — just as someone who makes $100,000 a year or someone who burned through their three years is ineligible for specific targeted welfare.

        1. No, they should not be treated as second-class. They simply should be ineligible for targeted welfare

          aka, second-class.

          You’re discriminating on an even more arbitrary basis than your opponents! You would deny benefits to US citizens just because of who their parents were. That’s inexcusable.

          The fact that benefits are means tested does not open the door to all manner of social engineering discrimination.

          1. No. It’s the fact that you are getting something given to you without any desert or merit that opens the door to all manner of social engineering discrimination. If you don’t want the requirements that come with targeted welfare, don’t ask for targeted welfare.

            1. If you don’t want the requirements that come with targeted welfare, don’t ask for targeted welfare.

              Considering the requirement you’re proposing is that you have different parents, that smug response doesn’t really apply. There’s no way for someone to choose to satisfy that requirement.

              1. In case it is only a curiosity to you why I said 18 years, one reason is that that is the duration of the time that the parents are making the choices for a child born the day they immigrated. Whether the household gets welfare is their choice, not the child’s, and household eligibility is based on the parents’ eligibility, not the child’s.

                Also, to clarify, I’m not saying that any child of immigrants is ineligible for 18 years. I’m saying that a child is on the eligibility schedule of his immigrant parents, and that the parents are ineligible for 18 years. When the parents become eligible, the whole household is eligible. That avoids the perception or reality that the citizen child is the gateway to welfare for the immigrant parents.

              2. Considering the requirement you’re proposing is that you have different parents, that smug response doesn’t really apply. There’s no way for someone to choose to satisfy that requirement.

                Incidentally, a citizen child of citizen parents also doesn’t get to choose not to have deadbeat parents who drink or gamble their way through some other welfare eligibility requirement.

  21. It is perfectly respectable to respond to restrictionists who worry about immigrants becoming a drain on the welfare system by saying: “Well, then, get rid of the welfare state.” It is quite another to say: “make the welfare state off-limits to the immigrants.” The first will lead to a net diminution of government power. The second a net increase.

    Liberal immigration policies are an important cause for liberty lovers. But whatever compromises are needed to advance that cause ? and there are plenty that we’ll have to make ? they shouldn’t give the government more powers to go after more people for more reasons.

    1. But I don’t think that’s bound, or even likely, to happen.

      Canada’s imposing medical qualifications for immigration is intrusive only on those who choose to participate by applying. Saying this is giving gov’t more powers to go after people is like saying if they open a toll bridge, it gives them more power to go after people for toll evasion.

      Is this like that article several years ago about the person who said instead of there being a byzantine permit process for the bldg. he wanted to do, he’d’ve been better off if he’d just been forbidden to do it, period? Because he was tempted into an appl’n process that seemed simpler & cheaper than it was?

      Is this like the people who say free trade agreements reduce liberty because they produce bigger gov’t, i.e. a too-complicated regime for gaining add’l freedom, as compared to trade’s simply being inflexibly, non-negotiably restricted?

      1. And that’s how you beat the 900 char. posting limit. Would I be better off if, instead of a complicated way to do that, I had no way at all?

  22. That makes a lot of sense man, WOw.

    http://www.Gone-Anon.at.tc

  23. So a day has passed and still no source for the 62% of illegal immigrants pay income tax claim. I think we know what that means.

  24. From the most primitive origins of our species, human societies have established and maintained government institutions for the defense of the common territory and cultural heritage. This includes the language, the religion(s), the family structure, child rearing practices, commercial and ownership traditions and so forth. The primary threat to societies over time has always been unauthorized invasion or infiltration by by members of other societies (i.e. “foreigners” or “aliens”). History shows that any society that fails to guard against this threat is unstable and will simply cease to exist after a few generations. Consequently the ability of our government to regulate immigration is absolutely fundamental to its own existence. Too much “liberty” in regard to immigration is tantamount to cultural suicide.

  25. OK, I’ve read the whole thread, and nobody seems to have commented on this:

    All immigrants are less likely to move to states with large welfare programs in recent years.

    Hmmmm, could that be because the states with large welfare programs are in dire economic shape, due (in no small part) to all their spending on previous decades worth of illegals?

    1. A small example: the San Francisco Department of Public Health spends millions ever year trying to control TB, which is epidemic here, due to illegals.

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