Immigration

Illegal Immigrants Are at a 10-Year Low, So Can We Chill for a Minute?

"The decline is due almost entirely to a sharp decrease in the number of Mexicans entering the country without authorization."

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Pew Research

A funny thing happened on the way to stringing razor wire, splitting up families, and sending the military to police the United States' border with Mexico: The number of illegal immigrants—especially from Mexico—in America continued its decade-long decline. Via Pew Research:

The number of unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. fell to its lowest level in more than a decade, according to new Pew Research Center estimates based on 2016 government data. The decline is due almost entirely to a sharp decrease in the number of Mexicans entering the country without authorization.

Note that we reached peak illegals (and peak illegal Mexicans) back in 2006 or 2007, right around the time the housing bubble popped and what eventually become the financial crisis started kicking into high (low?) gear. Between 2007 and 2016, the number of unauthorized Mexican immigrants declined from about 6.9 million people to 5.5 million people. These days, illegals are most likely to come from Asia (especially China and India) and to enter the country with legal documents, such as a tourist, student, or work visa and then overstay. Deportations peaked in 2013, when Barack Obama was running the show.

Why has illegal immigration from Mexico declined? According to Pew's Jeffrey Passel and D'Vera Cohn, illegals missed their families. One also presumes that the sluggish U.S. economy presented fewer opportunities.

According to Mexican government survey data [from 2009 to 2014], most returnees said they left the U.S. of their own accord, and the majority cited family reunification as the main reason for going to Mexico. However, 14% said they came back because they were deported.

Pew Research

At the same time, the number of illegals from Central America (chiefly Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala) has increased over the past decade, from 1.5 million people to about 1.85 million.

Why might more Central Americans' be heading north? Mostly because those countries have gotten poorer over time, often due to U.S. intervention. Reason's Shikha Dalmia explains, in the 1980s,

President Ronald Reagan, eager for a showdown with the [Soviet Union, funded]…the Contra insurgency against the Nicaraguan Sandinistas and paramilitary operations to prop up the U.S.-friendly regimes of El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala.

The upshot was civil war and a complete social breakdown from which these countries have never recovered.

As Princeton's Doug Massey noted at a recent immigration conference (that I co-organized on behalf of Reason Foundation), in the 1960s, the GDP of these "frontline countries" was equivalent to those of "non-frontline states" such as Costa Rica, Belize, and Panama. Now the latter cohort's GDP is almost three times greater. Likewise, while the homicide rate of non-frontline states is 19.7 per 100,000, it is 43.5 per 100,000 for the frontline states. San Pedro Sula, the Honduran city where the caravan started, has become the murder capital of the world.

Prior to Reagan's intervention, migration from Central America was negligible.

People troubled by illegal immigration may find comfort in the trend line of the past decade. But to me, the decline is worrisome. Our problems are only beginning when people stop choosing to come here, whether legally or not. Increased living standards follow economic growth, which follows population growth. And population growth follows immigration. Contra nativist Rep. Steve King (R–Iowa), the only proven way you can maintain your "civilization" is with somebody else's babies. And for all the fears of literal and figurative invasions by supposedly unassimilable Mexicans and Central Americans, crime and most other social pathologies have been declining regardless of the flow and ebb of immigration (both legal and illegal). The real immigration crisis is when newcomers stop showing up.

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  1. All Ronald Reagan’s fault?

    The 1980s called, Nick. They want their communist talking-points back.

    1. those countries failed because Reagan failed to stop communism thanks to the democrats who stopped Reagan.

    2. All of those countries in south and central America were vibrant and leading the world prior to 1980, at least that’s what nick and other indoors think. The Iran contra and drug wars causing corruption in already corrupt society is another attempt at disinformation like the Nixon southern strategy turning all racists to conservatives. It’s a sign of ignorance when either are cited.

    3. The wisdom of arming the Contra rebels may be debatable, but the idea that if the Sandinistas had been left alone to rule that Nicaragua would have developed along the lines of Costa Rica is absurd. Does Dalmia also believe that without U.S. opposition, Cuba would likewise be as economically successful as Costa Rica? What about Venezuela’s economic problems — Bush’s fault?

  2. People on both sides are using illegals (NICK’S WORD, NOT MINE) entering the country as a colossal wedge issue. There are so many things at play, so many levels and interests to this thing, so many legitimate concerns and unwarranted freakouts, that I don’t see anyone chilling on the subject any time soon.

  3. “I**egal immigrants” is a dog whistle. Please use the phrase “undocumented citizens.”

    1. “Illegal sub-humans” is even more PC, if PC is defined by Trumpistas!

      If we need to have another 2008-style debacle, to depress our economy again / even more, to keep the illegal sub-humans out, then Trumpistas are WAAAY on board! Accordingly, step number one to bring on the economic suffering is, start some stupid and needless trade wars!!!

      1. “Illegal sub-humans” is even more PC, if PC is defined by Trumpistas!

        Not racist enough, ‘illegal dark-skinned ?ntermensch’. ‘Shithole dwellers’ is also acceptable.

        1. Can’t we just agree on something simple like ‘undocumented shadow occupation force’?

    1. Comment from your link:

      “A respect of the sanctity and rights of the individual is the mark of a moral society.”

      Yes!!! And when we contact alien intelligence, nationalism as back-woods hilly-billy-ism (parochialism, chauvinism) will be replaced by bias in favor of our solar system, then our galaxy! Onward, to the respect for all sentient life-forms!!!

      1. What about pre-sentient?

  4. “These days, illegals are most likely to come from Asia.” If true, this is shocking to me. Could it be that we just got better at keeping Mexicans out?

    1. I’m guessing it’s BS counting.

      When you talk about visa overstays, that could be days. And then they leave.

      Over the course of 20 years, that could add up to a lot of people, but at any single point in time, I doubt that there are more illegal alien Asians in the country than illegal alien Latin Americans.

      Notice that Nick didn’t *quantify* anything with regard to Asian illegal aliens. A tell for BS.

      1. Yeah, I think this was a completely bullshit talking point.

      2. 23 million Chinese adults would immigrate here if they could, per gallup poll

        turns out communism aint that fun

    2. These days, illegals are most likely to come from Asia (especially China and India) and to enter the country with legal documents, such as a tourist, student, or work visa and then overstay.

      Oh good. Those guys know how to explain gender roles to women.

  5. happiness is giving no fucks one way or the other. i guess i’m in the chill group.

    >>>Rep. Steve King (R?Iowa)

    this man definitely keeps peeps from wanting to be here

  6. Increased living standards follow economic growth, which follows population growth. And population growth follows immigration.

    Exactly.

    Of course conservatives will pounce and ask “Isn’t it odd when people who are so enthusiastic about birth control and abortion talk about population growth like it’s an inherently good thing? And besides, haven’t environmentalists made exactly the opposite argument ? namely, that the real problem is overpopulation?”

    But these are silly objections. We in the progressive / libertarian alliance don’t want population growth for its own sake. We’re not encouraging white people with uteri to have more babies. Rather, it’s population growth as a result of immigration that’s the goal. By allowing more black and brown bodies in the country, our level of diversity will increase. And countless scientific studies show diversity is always a wonderful thing with no drawbacks at all.

    1. “Increased living standards follow economic growth, which follows population growth. And population growth follows immigration.”

      Nope…

      Increased living standards follow economic growth PER CAPITA.

      If you just have economic growth, but a drop in per capita income, you get a drop in living standards.

      The most populous countries in the world, highest population growth rates, do not have the highest living standards.

      1. The plan is to outsource the child producing and raising responsibilities. I can see how studies show the economic benefits, because, I’m familiar with how much value per dollar teachers in our government schools give us and the high costs of housing here, but we could just as easily make raising kids more efficient by addressing those two problems.

        Israel has nation wide school choice and sperm banks that are stocked with imported products. It’s a long story.

    2. You are truly amazing, dude. I love you.

      1. Definitely one of his best works.

    3. I’ll grade that as an A+

    4. Excellent… up til the last sentence. “with no drawbacks at all” seems a touch too self aware.

  7. Deportations peaked in 2013, when Barack Obama was running the show.

    Alright. Illegal immigration peaked in 2013 under the Obama Administration and Trump’s bluster about the border is empty bloviating. We’ll just have to judge his administration/legacy on appointments like Gorsuch, Pai, and DeVos. Also, to do the thing realistically/honestly, judge relative to whatever hypothetical staffers you can assert HRC would’ve picked.

    You can stop trying to convince me how much worse the HRC administration would’ve been now.

    1. 2013 is when DHS changed their metrics to count turn backs at the border as a deportation.

      1. Leftists Always Lie

      2. Reason has been called out on this since 2013.

        Makes me sad.

        1. Dont give Reason a cent.

          The budget shock will result in leadership turnover.

          Maybe we would get some actual Libertarians running Reason rather than anarchists and Leftists.

  8. “Between 2007 and 2016, the number of unauthorized Mexican immigrants declined from about 6.9 million people to 5.5 million people.”

    5.5 million illegal aliens from Mexico alone?

    Every year, new immigrants come, every year more immigrants become American citizens. The 5.5 million here today aren’t the same people that were here ten years ago. Another place in that Pew report says that roughly a third of the illegal aliens have been here for more than ten years.

    Doesn’t that suggest that two-thirds of the illegal aliens that were here in 2016 were not here in 2007? Are we saying that this two thirds (4.6 million people) went back to Mexico and stayed there? How many of the original 6.9 million in 2007 became American citizens? How many of them left the U.S. for some period of time and came back?

    1. the research is all over the place in an effort to hide a pre determined outcome.

      1. This^^^^.

      2. Conspiratorial thinking. Ten yard penalty.

        1. We’re not allowed to notice that they’ve been lying to us for decades.

          1. Another lie exposed … they just come here to work ….

            Washington Examiner…
            “Census confirms: 63 percent of ‘non-citizens’ on welfare, 4.6 million households”

            “A majority of “non-citizens,” including those with legal green card rights, are tapping into welfare programs set up to help poor and ailing Americans, a Census Bureau finding that bolsters President Trump’s concern about immigrants costing the nation.”

            “In a new analysis of the latest numbers, from 2014, 63 percent of non-citizens are using a welfare program, and it grows to 70 percent for those here 10 years or more, confirming another concern that once immigrants tap into welfare, they don’t get off it. “

    2. Guessing Mr Jacket didn’t read “MIT-Yale Study of Govt. Data Finds 22.1 Mil Illegal Immigrants in U.S.” double what is discussed.

    3. The derivative changes right when George Waffen Bush faith-based asset-forfeiture prohibitionism whacked the economy in 2007-8. Clearly we need more abortion-banning male snake-jugglers in office writing ku-klux Comstock and other prohibition laws to reverse the flow of foreigners as accomplished in Herbert Hoover’s Administration of “our brothers’ keepers”. Republicans had priorities in 1931!

      1. I just love it when you take acid and then write comments.

  9. One out of seven people in the US was not born here.

    Are you seriously saying there’s not a problem with that? Something that won’t cause a huge change in culture and government? And it won’t be toward more liberty, it will be toward more socialism.

    1. Yes that is what Nick is saying and yes he thinks you are dumb enough to believe it.

    2. At least the Italians brought us some decent food.
      Damn Irish papists should go back where they came from. The potato famine is over.
      /s

      1. Oh and if we are worried about immigrants with largely liberal even socialist tendencies changing things we should deport the Jews. They have Israel now.
        /s

    3. The same stat was the same or higher when the Irish and Italians and eastern Europeans were coming here 100+ years ago. You wanna send them and their descendants all back?

      No of course not. They were white.

      1. No of course not. They were white.

        I would totally deport every last one of them as long as their SS burden went with them. It may even be cost effective. Matter of fact, maybe I am an open borders advocate. Those bigots in Canada and the EU (and Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, all of Africa, etc.) should open their borders to support our welfare recipients and poverty-based asylum seekers.

      2. Back then was different:
        1 “No workey, no eatey”
        2 There was a huge bias against “Hyphenated Americans” and demanding assimilation. Those who came but refused to assimilate were called traitors who should Get Out.
        3 Did you notice we got rather socialistic *after* those waves of immigration?

        The Anglo American conception of Liberty is just that, Anglo American.

        Fun factoid on “White”. Ben Franklin wouldn’t have considered those immigrants White.

        Ben Franklin:
        … And in Europe, the Spaniards, Italians, French, Russians and Swedes, are generally of what we call a swarthy Complexion; as are the Germans also, the Saxons only excepted, who with the English, make the principal Body of White People

        Only the Saxons and English were White according to Ben.

        https://goo.gl/sXV4Ag

        1. Lol at Swedes being swarthy.

          1. Well, they do talk funny.

          2. “Swarthy Swedes” are the best!

        2. 4. We did deport and murder the shit out of them.

          I don’t know if any of the dumbshits that keep pointing to the previous wave of immigration was around for the subsequent 10s, 20s, and 30s, but there was a lot of blood and antisemitism in the resulting melting pot.

      3. We, uh, also basically shut down immigration almost completely for 40 years to integrate people.

        We won’t integrate anybody now.

        1. There used to be open and organized hostility to “Hyphenated Americans”, to the point of calling them traitors and telling them they should get out. By Presidents.
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyphenated_American

          Now, supposed “conservative” Bill Kristol: White Working Class Should Be Replaced by Immigrants
          https://youtu.be/mWJSKhEwjy8

        2. If you didnt try to assimilate to be American, you were shunned.

          The 2nd gen Americans were harsh on 1st gen immigrants because they knew how brainwashed the immigrants were and how the immigrants would turn America into the shitholes they came from.

          America was better and assimilated immigrants knew it.

      4. But they did not come here to get on the dole …..

        “Census confirms: 63 percent of ‘non-citizens’ on welfare, 4.6 million households”

        “A majority of “non-citizens,” including those with legal green card rights, are tapping into welfare programs set up to help poor and ailing Americans, a Census Bureau finding that bolsters President Trump’s concern about immigrants costing the nation.”

        “In a new analysis of the latest numbers, from 2014, 63 percent of non-citizens are using a welfare program, and it grows to 70 percent for those here 10 years or more, confirming another concern that once immigrants tap into welfare, they don’t get off it. ”

        Of course the facts are racist if they don’t reveal what you want them to … right?

    4. xen?o?pho?bi?a

      noun
      intense or irrational dislike or fear of people from other countries.

      1. intense or irrational dislike or fear of people from other countries.

        And that’s it? What dictionary is that from so I know to stop using it? As someone who’s been asked “You aren’t from around here are you?” by people in his home state that’s the sort of definition I would expect from Sean Hannity or Bill Maher.

        1. It is what pops up when you google it and you are correct it is not what it means. It is fear of foreigners or strangers which is not the same as countries. Countries are nothing but lines on a map. Not the same thing.

          1. If you think countires are just lines on maps, then you are part of the problem.

          2. It is fear of foreigners or strangers which is not the same as countries.

            My definition always included anything strange, alien, or unfamiliar. Somebody’s car, the clothes they wear, the accent they have, the way they hold their hands or gesture… anything if you fear it simply because it’s alien. Now, if you feel you’re being deceived as a part of some alien conspiracy and the aliens actually disintegrate your jeep with a laser beam to prevent you from leaking their whereabouts, then it goes from paranoia to rational self-preservation.

      2. xen-o-phil-ia

        noun
        intense or irrational attraction or affection for people from other countries.

        1. I think I have that.

          Was watching Justice League the other night. Gal Godot is from another country and I definitely have an intense irrational attraction for her.

          1. Yes, I too a, ready for an extended ‘Israeli Occupation’.

        2. Except there is very little if any “xenophilia” around here, i.e., people favoring immigration just for the sake of wanting to be around foreigners, and there is quite a lot of xenophobia, i.e., people opposing immigration due to fear.

          1. What is it called when you hate the people of your own country?

            The good Reverend probably knows.

            1. Oh yeah, I forgot.

              “Cuck”

          2. Xenophilia might be a good description of diversity mania, but I actually agree: The left only favors massive immigration because they rationally expect it to advance their politics. In the one instance where it reliably hurt them politically, refugees from Cuba, they opposed it.

            1. ^^^THIS^^^

            2. You may be right about the left, but there is no statistical evidence that that is true. Chinese immigrants are some of our most productive members of society.

              I’d trade Chinese immigrants for socialist democrats all day long.

              1. I wasn’t asserting anything about productivity, only voting habits.

              2. Chinese are serious about fighting the Baizuo.

                Down with the Baizuo!

            3. The left only favors massive immigration because they rationally expect it to advance their politics.

              Okay, fine. Now do why libertarians favor permissive immigration.

              1. Some do because they’re more concerned with moral preening than actually preserving liberty in America.

                Import big government voters. Get big government.

            4. “The left only favors massive immigration because they rationally expect it to advance their politics. ”

              I wasn’t aware that “The left” favors massive immigration, or even favors immigration any more than The Right. My conservative friends are happy to acknowledge that immigration into the U.S., historically, has been beneficial. Rather, the debates I am familiar with concern the question of how to handle illegal immigrants currently in the U.S. If there is a monolithic “left” position — you often traffic in such broad stereotypes so I’ll try one here — it is to try to find some way to legalize the status of those who are law-abiding, tax paying etc, as a low-cost way to incorporate productive people into the national body, while the “right” position has appears to be the rather impractical demand for immediate deportation, or worse, of anyone in the U.S. illegally. “The Left” doesn’t need votes from immigrants, legal or otherwise: study after study shows that a majority of U.S. citizens support more ‘liberal’ positions on a variety of issues.

              1. “I wasn’t aware that “The left” favors massive immigration, or even favors immigration any more than The Right.”

                ‘ I’m not paying attention ‘

              2. The problem being, that many of those who are “law abiding” are still on the dole. Per the census…

                “A majority of “non-citizens,” including those with legal green card rights, are tapping into welfare programs set up to help poor and ailing Americans, a Census Bureau finding that bolsters President Trump’s concern about immigrants costing the nation.”

                “In a new analysis of the latest numbers, from 2014, 63 percent of non-citizens are using a welfare program, and it grows to 70 percent for those here 10 years or more, confirming another concern that once immigrants tap into welfare, they don’t get off it. “

      3. in?vad?er
        /in?v?d?r/
        noun
        a person or group that invades a country, region, or other place.

        For the most part, I wish the best for foreigners who *don’t* invade the US.

    5. That’s what freedom’s all about, buddy. You’re free to have your country used as a public toilet by the whole wide world. What you aren’t free to do is fuck-all about it. Deal.

      1. You’re free to have your country used as a public toilet by the whole wide world.

        This is the same sort of crap that nativists have been spouting on about for over 150 years now. These arguments about how immigrants are some dire threat to the Republic could have been lifted straight out of the Know Nothing Party’s playbook from the 1850’s arguing against Irish and Catholic immigration. They said the same thing about Chinese immigrants in the 1880’s, about Eastern/Southern European immigrants in the 1900/1910’s, etc. Each time, the nativists were wrong. The immigrants did not bring about the destruction of the Republic. America didn’t turn into a shithole. YES things changed, and NO not *everything* changed for the better. But overall things are better. And now the nativists say the same thing about Central American immigrants. It’s just one more example of the boy who cried wolf. They were wrong in the past, and they’re wrong now.

        1. “Diversity is our Strength”
          “All Groups behave the same way”
          Pick one

          Instead of extrapolations from the past with different peoples and different conditions in America, here are some facts from *today* on the relevant population.

          PEW Research on Hispanic Americans
          https://goo.gl/WBi1BV
          Hispanics Lean Democratic over 3 to 1
          https://goo.gl/hxSJHi
          Hispanics Want Bigger Government Providing More Services over 3 to 1

          Import more big government voters. Get more big government.

          It’s not rocket science, folks.

    6. Meh, in New York City, we’re building skyscrapers again, because people not born in the West don’t think it’s logical for the government to ban new skyscraper construction. There’s also Hurricane Sandy. Non-Westerns are more likely to think that skyscrapers and uphill home construction is the best response to rising sea levels.

  10. Two comments.

    The increased emigration from the Central American hellholes may be because they are socialist hellholes. As bad as dictators are and as much as people like freedom, they like full bellies and jobs even more, and socialism is not renowned for that, while most banana republic dictators are mostly known for corruption and not central planning.

    Any slowdown in illegal immigration into the US due to the 2006/7 bust should have been reversed by now; at least that is the first impression, However, the unemployment rates are bad measure of the economy, since so many people dropped out of the unemployed rosters and still have not returned. I haven’t seen the figures for a while, but memory says the employment figure was something like 75% before the bust, 65% after, and it hasn’t climbed very much since.

  11. No. If we’re not wound up about immigration, we’re going to have to bitch about something else, and it just seems like too much work to change.

  12. “Mostly because those countries have gotten poorer over time, often due to U.S. intervention. Reason’s Shikha Dalmia explains,”

    Agree that it’d be nice if everybody took a chill pill regarding immigration, but can we stop with this “U.S. intervention” crap please? It’s as if Cuba and the Country Formerly Known as the Soviet Union have no liability there at all.

    Although in a way Shikha has a point. If we hadn’t intervened in the ’80s and those countries had gone full Cuba back then, we wouldn’t be dealing with a caravan now. The caravaners would have been shot at the border trying to get out. I mean, back in the day the East Germans had a problem with caravans to West Berlin and in ’61 they figured out a way to shut ‘er down, right?

    1. “but can we stop with this “U.S. intervention” crap please?”

      Probably not.

      Gotta blame the failure of Latin America on the Yankees.

      Simple rule of thumb: It’s Always Whitey’s Fault.

      1. How do the Spanish and the Portuguese, both white, both European, explorers, conquerors, and slavers in the New World, get a free pass on this?

        Everything below Florida was conquered by Spain and Portugal. The indigenous cultures were systematically eradicated–to the point where the natives demand that everything be offered in ‘their’ native tongue–Spanish.

        To this day their respective cultures are Spanish based with shreds of the destroyed indigenous cultures as accent pieces.

        How the hell do the people whose germs wiped out so many get such a complete pass? We blame Columbus, and Cortez, but that blame never seems to extend to Spain–instead, it slips past Spain and onto a generic ‘Europe’ after spitting at Columbus.

        Spanish is LITERALLY the language of conquerors in the Americas.

        1. “How do the Spanish and the Portuguese, both white, both European, explorers, conquerors, and slavers in the New World, get a free pass on this?”

          Because the Anglo America is where freedom prospers and is defended. It’s the defenders of freedom who must be destroyed.

          Fun fact on Latin America:
          Less than 5% of the Trans Atlantic slave trade went to the North American mainland. Brazil alone received 10 times as many imported African slaves as the US.

  13. Since immigration tracks with economic health, isn’t restricting the free flow of humans to severely distort the free labor market? Libertarians really have no choice but to be quite liberal on this subject. Some of them might need to be reminded that the entire land area of the US isn’t yer property.

    1. Libertarians really have no choice but to be quite liberal on this subject. Some of them might need to be reminded that the entire land area of the US isn’t yer property.

      28% of the land area is owned by the Federal Government.

      1. Amd Tony complaining about it is ironic.

    2. You’re absolutely right Tony.

      isn’t restricting the free flow of humans to severely distort the free labor market?

      Now do minimum wage.

      1. That you want a society in which the engine of the economy is tweens doing factory work is why I’m not a libertarian.

        1. At least we finally agree that you’re not a libertarian.

          And isn’t it funny that you didn’t do minimum wage, but instead lowered yourself to purple language and denigrations?

          Not funny ha ha, funny you’re a liar.

          1. I’m for large-scale government interferences in the so-called free market, including minimum wages, and purple prose is kind of my thing. Like Proust.

            1. Eww

        2. Child labor is one of the litmus tests, Tony. Voluntary child labor > public skools.

        3. They have small hands and do exquisite work.

    3. “Kochs need moar human widgets to polish their monocles.”

    4. Since immigration tracks with economic health, isn’t restricting the free flow of humans to severely distort the free labor market?

      Oh, so that’s why left-wingers support more highway construction. 😉

    5. Some of them might need to be reminded that the entire land area of the US isn’t yer property.

      Thanks for agreeing that a land owner has the right to build a skyscraper next to your home without government approval. If a person gets to access the USA Supreme Court in the event of a dispute, than the country as a whole gets to decide if we want him to be part off our national jurisdiction.

    6. ” isn’t restricting the free flow of humans to severely distort the free labor market? ”

      That’s what the South said when the importation of slaves was made illegal.

      “Needz moar human widgetz!”

  14. 50% is a job half done…

  15. Ok, so we aren’t getting more illegal immigrants. Time to focus on deporting the ones that are already here!

    1. Which used to be touted as impossible due to the large number. But now it’s more possible, yes?

    2. Can’t, it would violate the NAP.

      1. What would you know about it admitted non-libertarian?

        1. Yet more libertarian than most of the people here. Few subjects illustrate that better than immigration, where the racist core of this whole shebang cannot remain hidden by a veneer of abstract freedom speak.The question looms: are there any real libertarians?

          1. Tony, what race are Americans?

            1. Increasingly Latino.

          2. Tony you are less libertarian than Putin. Give it a rest.

      2. “muh anarchy”

  16. “Reason’s Shikha Dalmia explains …”

    Yes, Latin America was fount of Libertarianism in the world, but it was ruined by the Evil Yankees.

    Hate America NOW!

  17. “Contra nativist Rep. Steve King (R?Iowa), the only proven way you can maintain your “civilization” is with somebody else’s babies. ”

    I never expected Nick to top his “No True Communism”.

    Now it’s full on genocide. “Extinction NOW!”

    “Libertarian Moment”

  18. When the number of illegals drops far enough, then the public will support more legal immigrants. The combination of fewer illegals and more (and better chosen) legal immigrants will be good for the US.

    Choosing is different than being forced. Choosing to allow immigrants you want is better than being forced to accept aliens who merely want to take advantage of us.

    1. Borders are nothing more than lines on a map.

      Always focus on the individual.

      1. Individual pays tax for government services, but he doesn’t much opportunity to use the government services he pays for because he has to stand in line behind 10% of the population of Central America at the government office. His kids are crowded out of the government schools he pays for and then later they’re crowded out of the entry level jobs.

        Individual wonders why Honduran parents and Honduran taxpayers aren’t paying for Honduran children to attend school in Honduras.

        Individual doesn’t have the opportunity to live in a fantasy world where schools and other government services don’t cost Individual a lot of his paycheck.

        1. Market economy needs free movement of goods, services, and workers. To me that is axiomatic.

          Now sell that in an election.

      2. Now do laws
        And contracts
        And rights

      3. Borders are nothing more than lines on a map.

        No, actually they’re not.

        When a troop of gorillas wanders into the territory of another, what happens?

        There’s a fight. And the losers are run off.

        When a pride of lions wanders into the territory of another, what happens?

        There’s a fight. And the losers are run off.

        When a herd of gazelles wanders into the territory of another, what happens?

        There’s a fight. And the losers are run off.

        When a colony of ants wanders into the territory of another, what happens?

        There’s a fight. And the losers are run off.

        Or killed. The losers can sometimes just be killed.

        And these ‘lines on a map’ are so important that, rather than get rid of them, nature has evolved numerous ways of warning other animals to STAY OUT. Nature has evolved ways to MARK borders.

        Various types of scent marking.
        Varigated calls
        Information conveyed through repetitive movement
        Various types of visual marking

        Beyond that, the more stationary ways of life have devised ways to poison their territory to interlopers.

        Borders–private property–territory is so important that it is encoded in all life on the planet.

        No. Borders are NOT ‘just lines on a map.

        1. Borders are nothing more than lines on a map.

          No, actually they’re not.

          Excellent post, Az
          I fucking love science.

        2. Yep. The most vocal open borders advocates won’t cross gang tags in the street if they expect to get shot as a result.

      4. Your utopia will never happen. Please engage with the real world

      5. “Borders are nothing more than lines on a map.”

        Go test that theory on the North/South Korean border.

      6. If you are an anarchist borders are nothing more than lines on a map, because you don’t believe in countries anyway. But thanks for letting us know you are not a libertarian, but an anarchist.

  19. Illegal Immigrants Are at a 10-Year Low, So Can We Chill for a Minute?

    No. Next question?

  20. I can’t believe you don’t notice this data cuts off two years ago. In fact, I don’t believe you didn’t notice this.

  21. Of course illegal immigration is slowing down, most are already in the USA.

  22. Does no one understand anymore the Sorites Paradox of the Heap in a-new-low? One illegal immigrant is still a heap too many.

    We agree that this is a heap of sand. Sorites removes one grain, is it still a heap? Another grain is removed, is it still a heap? Another, and another and another … Is it still a heap? Two grains remain and it is still a heap … of illegal immigrants, or when did it stop being a heap and why was that not noticed?

    Good people ought to be armed as they will, with wits and guns and The Truth.

  23. Hmm, chart looks like it is still nearly triple what it was in 1990.

  24. I would not mind changing immigration laws to make it much easier to come and stay on work visas, but as long as we have laws, they should be enforced. It is one of the reasons I like that laws against pot are enforced. It shows how stupid the laws are and leads to changing them. If we ignore the laws, they will never be changed.

  25. Now that Texas can still confiscate your home and leave you liable for the mortgage over plant ROOTS found by dogs in your yard, decriminalized Mexico is looking better and better. Looter England had its Brain Drain in the 60s, but 60s hippie Texans will find social security checks go a lot farther now that prohibitionism has been struck down south of the Border. Republican looters are a MUCH greater danger to rights and economic freedom than the other looters, and folks can now vote with their feet or vote libertarian.

  26. Open Borders
    Welfare State

    Choose one.

    1. Choose the first, and you’re gonna get the second.

  27. Ummm, a ten year low, but still 3 times the population of illegal immigrants in the USA when I was in high school. If the USA sent an additional 7 million Americans to live as illegal immigrants in Iraq and Afghanistan, would Reason support our “Free West Asia Project”. It’s based on the “Free State Project”, because national borders don’t matter and there’s nothing illegal about Americans moving to New Hampshire.

    1. “It’s only invasion and occupation when Whitey does it”

  28. But to me, the decline is worrisome. Our problems are only beginning when people stop choosing to come here, whether legally or not. Increased living standards follow economic growth, which follows population growth. And population growth follows immigration. Contra nativist Rep. Steve King (R?Iowa), the only proven way you can maintain your “civilization” is with somebody else’s babies.

    Now that life is better in Latin America than it was in the 1980’s fewer people want to leave. This is good, because it’s the result of life getting better there. I’m all for a generous immigration policy, but we can live with lower immigration if that becomes the new natural state. It’s possible to raise well adjusted kids in large families if you stop turning every glance into a lifetime of autism treatment.

  29. The story fails to mention another reason for lower numbers of illegal immigration. Some people used to go back to Mexico to visit their families and then return to the US, but now just stay in the US because of the tighter border security.

  30. No, we can’t chill for a minute. Nick is a moron.

    Yale Study Finds Twice as Many Undocumented Immigrants as Previous Estimates

    Generally accepted estimates put the population of undocumented immigrants in the United States at approximately 11.3 million. A new study, using mathematical modeling on a range of demographic and immigration operations data, suggests that the actual undocumented immigrant population may be more than 22 million.

  31. Also from the report:
    “About 5 million U.S.-born children live with unauthorized immigrant parents”

    The US does not have magic dirt.

    Anchor babies of illegal aliens are largely Not American in culture and values as well.

  32. Well Nick, we are either a nation of and with laws or we are just a geographical area. If we are not a nation, but just a geographical area we can save a lot of money. We won’t need police, border patrol agents, courts, jails, prisons, the Armed Forces and on it goes. Just remember, you will never get any kind of justice without laws.

    Now if we are a nation of laws, then even one lawbreaker is one two many, and illegal immigrants are certainly
    lawbreakers. US Citizens deserves justice, more than lawbreakers.

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    1. Is English your first language?

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  36. Wait, What?

    So 22 Millionpeople in this country Illegally costing the American Taxpayer more than 150 BILLION a year.

    Not to talk about the Construction Jobs from Concrete, to Flooring to even the skilled trades and whole industries like cabinet making and so many more almost completely taken over by them.

    Tell, me how is it that wages being depressed and Americans out of work is something we should just ignore?

    Idiot Liberals want everyone to go to college for free,,,, “as if” there are 100 Million Jobs in this country that need College.

    When we have Tens of Millions of college Graduates with History and English Degrees who end up as waiters and waitresses because there is no need for them do you think they will be happy?

    I mean we see these people already when only 25% of the population has a degree. They whine and cry because there are no jobs for them.

    The government needs to support Americans getting in to the TRADES where people can earn a decent living, have a middle class life style, and build companies…

    1. Most of those illegals, and the legals as well, do not in fact do all those wonderful jobs. According to the US Census ….

      “A majority of “non-citizens,” including those with legal green card rights, are tapping into welfare programs set up to help poor and ailing Americans, a Census Bureau finding that bolsters President Trump’s concern about immigrants costing the nation.”

      “In a new analysis of the latest numbers, from 2014, 63 percent of non-citizens are using a welfare program, and it grows to 70 percent for those here 10 years or more, confirming another concern that once immigrants tap into welfare, they don’t get off it. “

  37. No. If we’re not wound up about immigration, we’re going to have to bitch about something else, and it just seems like too much work to change.www.Mesalary.com

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