Immigration

Immigrants Vote With their Feet for Greater Freedom

Cato Institute scholar David Bier quantifies the enormous extent to which immigration increases freedom.

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The idea that migrants seek to move to freer societies is far from a new one. In my book Free to Move: Foot Voting, Migration, and Political Freedom, I cite evidence indicating that migrants tend to move to nations with greater economic liberty, and that female migrants often especially prefer those where there is greater equality for women. But I also pointed out that it's difficult to quantify the extent of the gains in freedom involved, even though in many cases, they are obviously large.

In a just-published short article, Cato Institute immigration scholar David Bier provides some valuable data that quantifies this effect much more fully than any previous analysis.

Using the Cato Institute‐​Fraser Institute Human Freedom Index and the United Nations Population Division's international migrant stock data, it is possible to estimate that about 187 million people have moved to freer countries than the ones in which they were born. The average immigrant moving to a freer country moved 70 spots up the Human Freedom Index ranking. This is roughly like moving from Libya to Mexico or from Mexico to the United States.

Cuban immigrants have benefited the most from immigration, moving up, on average, 172 spots relative to their birth country, which is about the difference between the United States and Cuba…

As Bier points out the Cato-Fraser Human Freedom Index includes both economic and civil liberties. So it's a broadly inclusive measure of freedom.

The effect of moving 70 or more spots on this scale is truly enormous. The difference betwen spending your life in Cuba or the United States is the difference between a lifetime of poverty and oppression versus much greater freedom, well-being and happiness for your children. The narrowly "economic" benefits alone are enormous, amounting to roughly a doubling of world GDP if all migration restrictions were dropped. But even that kind of figure falls short of capturing the full benefits, which includes such things as dissenters escaping censorship, ethnic, religious, and racial minorities fleeing persecution, and so on.

Bier does point out that a minority of migrants (about 69 million of the 256 million in the UN data base), actually moved to countries with lower freedom ratings than those they left behind. As he points out, however, many of these are cases where the gap is relatively small, and the migrant in question may have been seeking to avoid oppression targeted at his or her specific group. For example, even if country A is, on average, less free than B, A may provide greater freedom to a particular racial or religious minority which is the object of persecution in B:

Some 69 million immigrants have moved to less free countries than their birthplaces, but these moves are almost always lateral (an average of about 15 spots down versus 70 spots up the rankings), and in almost all cases, these moves are still almost always freedom enhancing for the individual mover. The specific type of freedom that might be most urgently needed may be more relevant to the immigrant than the other types….

This is why even what appears on average to be a net loss in liberty can, given a person's individual circumstances, be freedom‐​enhancing.

I would add that there is necessarily a good deal of imprecision in data like this. While a gap of 70 spots on the Cato-Fraser Index is likely to capture genuinely large differences between the nations in question, a gap of 15 or fewer may often be primarily just noise in the data. Nonetheless, it would be useful to conduct a closer examination of the minority of migrants (about 27%), who choose societies rated as less free than their countries of origin.

In addition to increasing freedom for migrants, expanding international migration also increases freedom and wealth of natives. I summarize some of the reasons why here.

Perhaps the most common response to arguments that migration increases freedom is the claim that immigration from repressive societies can damage the institutions that ensure freedom in destination countries. Perhaps the immigrants bring with them the harmful values and institutions that ruined their previous homes. In the most dire scenarios, the latter's institutions can deteriorate to the point where they are no better than the former, thereby "killing the goose that laid the golden egg" that makes a nation attractive to migrants in the first place.

Such concerns should not be lightly dismissed. But, in Chapter 6 of my book, I go through a lot of evidence indicating that they are greatly overblown. Indeed, native nationalists generally pose a greater threat to liberal democratic institutions than immigrants do.

Alex Nowrasteh and Ben Powell's recently published Wretched Refuse? The Political Economy of Immigration and Institutions is the most thorough analysis yet of the impact of immigration on destination-country institutions. And their conclusions are much the same as mine. In my book, I also address arguments to the effect that migrants have an obligation to stay home and "fix their own countries," thereby perhaps improving their institutions.

For situations where immigration really does pose an institutional threat, I outline a wide range of "keyhole solutions" that can mitigate the danger by means less draconian (and less costly) than excluding migrants. For example, if (contrary to the evidence) you believe that immigrants might overburden the welfare state, a simple keyhole solution (already embedded in the 1996 welfare reform act) is to limit their access to welfare benefits.

We cannot categorically rule out the possibility that the freedom-enhancing advantages of free migration could sometimes be outweighed by other considerations. But any such considerations would have to be both extremely weighty, and backed by strong evidence showing that there is no way to address them other than by consigning would-be migrants to lives of poverty and oppression.

NEXT: Prof. John McWhorter (Columbia) on "People Getting Fired for Referring to the N-Word - Activism or Performance Art?"

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  1. The logic of allowed substantial, controlled and managed (yes those who will post ugly emotional irrational responses, I say controlled and managed, not unlimited) immigration is unassailable, as this post illustrates. But for any doubters consider the recently released census data.

    What one sees is a high correlation between population growth, particularly from younger people and economic strength. Texas of course is the leading example, its economic surge fueled by immigration from both the other U. S. states and from outside the United States.

    The irony of course is that Texas is dominated by conservative Republicans who hate immigrants from other nations, and it is only because they are so ineffective and inept that their policy prescriptions are not enacted in a way to damage the economic aspects of the very population they represent.

    1. AGain, Ilya, David Bier, and Sydney. The home addresses. We are sending these people to your streets, and to your upstairs bedrooms. Until we have the addresses, STFU. You want them placed in black neighborhoods where they will engage in the violent ethnic cleansing of our people.

      1. That Black Supremacist President of George Mason needs to import a million Indian Law profs who would be thrilled to earn $25000 a year, to replace Ilya.

        I support replacing this guy with an immigrant, Ilya:

        https://reason.com/volokh/2021/04/30/george-mason-university-president-planning-on-illegal-race-discrimination-in-faculty-hiring/

      2. “where they will engage in the violent ethnic cleansing of our people.”

        White supremacist Cockatoo has gotten into the coke supply again!

        1. Whites are not being ethnically cleansed by immigrants, blacks are.

          1. Immigrants suppress wages and increase profits for thr tech billionaire owner of the media, of the Democrat Party and of Cato.

            1. Interesting that part of their plan then is to extend citizenship and increase the minimum wage, but what does a coke-addled Cockatoo know about such things?

              1. Immigrants suppress all wages, including yours, Queenie. That is why wages barely keep up with inflation despite strides in productivity. Your salary was about to soar from the Trump labor shortage, then the billionnaires got rid of him for cutting into their profits. You are a victim of irresponsible Dem immigration. They just want to take over with fake voters. They don’t care about your welfare.

                1. Of course Cockatoos don’t respond to things, they just repeat things (often nonsensically).

                2. Immigrants suppress all wages

                  No. You’re as bad an economist as you are a doctor and lawyer.

              2. QA, QA,
                It is a mental health matter for you to stop engaging with Behar.

      3. We are sending these people to your streets, and to your upstairs bedrooms.

        What’s really telling is that any time there’s a discussion of liberalizing immigration laws, the right wing nativist loons’ minds immediately jump to “sending” people places. (Think back to the initial Trump speech: “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best.”) The notion of immigrants as autonomous actors, moving to change their personal circumstances, doesn’t even occur to them. No, it must be a conspiracy by Them.

    2. “conservative Republicans who hate immigrants from other nations”

      Incorrect. But thanks for your blind assumptions.

      1. AL posting this right below Behar’s rants with no self awareness is teh awesome.

        1. Queenie, we need to replace you with cheap immigrant labor, at your house, at your job. They would be normal people, and less fey.

          You are obsessed by importing fake Democrat voters to turn our nation into a permanent one party state. You are oblivious to the fact that blacks always suffer most from Democrat policy, and that blacks thrived most under Trump.

          1. That last paragraph is chock full of racist nuttiness (the immigrants are eternally Democrats, the blacks don’t know what’s good for them), but Cockatoos love nuts (even when, in this case, they are nuts).

            1. David’s point about the effect that illegal immigrant labor has on poor minority employment is well taken however. From the US Commission on Civil Rights:

              There has been a significant rise in U.S. immigration, both legal and illegal, over the past four decades. Experts at our briefing testified that immigrant workers now make up approximately one-seventh of the American workforce, and they estimated that
              illegal workers account for one-third of the total immigrants now in the U.S. [Approved (4-1): Chairman Reynolds and Commissioners Gaziano, Heriot and Kirsanow voted in favor; Commissioner Yaki voted against; Commissioner Taylor did not vote.]
              2. Illegal immigration to the United States in recent decades has tended to increase the supply of low-skilled, low-wage labor available in the U.S. labor market. [Approved
              (5-1): Chairman Reynolds and Commissioners Gaziano, Heriot, Kirsanow, and Taylor voted in favor; Commissioner Yaki voted against.]
              3. About six in 10 adult black males have a high school diploma or less, and black men are disproportionately employed in the low-skilled labor market, where they are more likely to be in labor competition with immigrants. [Approved (4-1): Chairman
              Reynolds and Commissioners Heriot, Kirsanow and Taylor voted in favor; Commissioner Yaki voted against; Commissioner Gaziano abstained.]
              4. The average worker with a high school degree or less earns less today, adjusted for inflation, than someone with a similar education earned thirty-five years ago. [Approved (5-1): Chairman Reynolds and Commissioners Gaziano, Heriot, Kirsanow, and Taylor voted in favor; Commissioner Yaki voted against.]
              5. Illegal immigration to the United States in recent decades has tended to depress both wages and employment rates for low-skilled American citizens, a disproportionate number of whom are black men. Expert economic opinions concerning the negative
              effects range from modest to significant. Those panelists that found modest effects overall nonetheless found significant effects in industry sectors such as meatpacking and construction. [Approved (5-1):

              1. What other coercive measures should the federal government take to protect black men’s wages?

                1. Enforcing the current immigration laws properly. That will do wonders.

                  1. Just that huh? That’s the one exception…That’s…telling.

                    1. What’s telling is you can’t support it. Your ideology and belief structure won’t allow you too, even if it would support African American wages.

                    2. Projection is a hell of a drug.

                    3. Notably, you haven’t said if you can support it.

              2. Those black workers got 9% raises year over year, until they got rid of Trump. His immigration policy worked for black workers.

      2. I would argue that it is an incorrect statement altogether as “conservative Republicans” generally like immigrants. They recognize this immigrant are hardworking and often conservative in there own values. It is really the “populist” Republicans that are speaking out about immigrants.

        1. I like immigrants. However, mass immigration does suppress wages and we are at unprecedented all-time high levels. And our quasi-open borders regime of permitting illegal immigration, engineered by anti-Americans, is without the consent of the governed.

          1. The number of immigrants as a percent of the population is lower than it was in 1860.

            1. We don’t care about 1860, how about the great wave fom 1890 to 1920.

            2. Just for curiosity’s sake – if the number of immigrants as a percentage of the population was at an all time high, would that make a difference to you? Would you then say that immigration should be paused or reduced?

            3. Gee, what happened right after 1860? Is it something we want to do again maybe?

            4. That’s actually incorrect. The % is higher today than it was in 1860.

    3. OTOH, Connecticut used to also be like Texas, then too many people fled NY and Mass there and they are now a high tax state that ranks low on the ease of doing business ratings. Same happened in California.

    4. You’re an idiot.

      1. What an intelligent retort from our semi-epsilon racist.

  2. “native nationalists generally pose a greater threat to liberal democratic institutions than immigrants do’

    But in practice, native nationalists often get political power when there is a sense among the public, however unjustified by whatever objective measures one wants to use, that there has been “too much” immigration. So if native nationalists are a big problem, that makes “too much” immigration, in practice, also a big problem.

    1. if native nationalists are a big problem, that makes “too much” immigration, in practice, also a big problem.

      So native nationalist demagoguery is the fault of those who advocate for immigration, rather than the fault of the demagogues and their followers?

      1. If you are a materialist, then policies that produce counterproductive backlashes have to be considered as failures. The concept of fault is kind of irrelevant.
        Now if you are on the side of the Lord, and expected to be vindicated in eternity, even if the sky falls here on earth, then a different set of considerations applies.

        1. Exactly. Noticing the expected consequences of policies has nothing to do with assigning blame. If large-scale immigration begets populist nationalism, and populist nationalism is a bad thing, then large scale immigration has at least that one bad consequence. Saying that it shouldn’t have that consequence is irrelevant.

          1. So if certain Israeli policy begets anti-Semitism in other parts of the world and anti-Semitism is a bad thing, then certain Israeli policy has at least one bad consequence. Saying that it shouldn’t have that consequence is irrelevant (and certainly nothing anyone should be fired over, amirite?). Derpity-derp!

            1. Depends on your policy, the effects of your policy, and your ultimate goals.

              If your goals are to have a “freer, more democratic society”, and excessive immigration results in a nationalist movement which is damaging to a “more democratic society”, then excessive immigration damages your overall goals.

              While you have a bad habit of bringing up the Jewish situation which makes us question how anti-Semitic you are, we can address your point as well.

              Yes, the Israelis take into account the likely backlash in any policy they may consider, the value of the policy and their overall goals. And if a policy would result in too large a backlash, they will not do it. For example, one solution to the continued terrorist bombings and attacks on Israel would be to simply move the entire Palestinian population out of Gaza and the West Bank into Egypt and Jordan. Among other issues however, this would likely cause too large a backlash. So, it would be counter productive.

              1. I bring up Jewish examples generally here because for many conservatives Jews are one of the few sympathetic minorities they can conceive and specifically here because Bernstein has in the past argued that blaming Israeli policy for the actions of anti-Semites who react ‘in backlash’ is an awful argument to make. The blame for anti-Semitic actions is on anti-Semites, likewise the blame for freedom-restricting nativists is on them.

                1. You seem to have avoided the point being made. I’ll repeat.

                  “Yes, the Israelis take into account the likely backlash in any policy they may consider, the value of the policy and their overall goals. And if a policy would result in too large a backlash, they will not do it.”

                  Think about that.

                  1. And you’re missing my point. Israel’s government should not take into account backlash in the form of anti-Semitic acts, the responsibility for anti-Semitic acts is never on them but on anti-Semites. Doing otherwise is what Bernstein, at least in that context, rightly called victim blaming.

                    1. “Israel’s government should not take into account backlash in the form of anti-Semitic acts, ”

                      Of course they should! Taking into account other people’s responses to your actions it critical! That’s how the world works.

                    2. So, heckler’s veto rules?

                    3. You don’t really understand what a heckler’s veto is, compared to taking into account the response to your actions.

                      Think about it.

                    4. So, heckler’s veto rules?

                      If you don’t want to get punched in the face, then yes! Of course you consider how a crowd is going to react when you say something. That doesn’t affect your legal right to say it, typically, but it does (or should) affect your decisions.

                      I mean, your position is just weird. What kind of country do you think doesn’t consider how one of its actions will cause other countries around the world to respond? Doesn’t mean it automatically deters you from acting, but you consider it.

                2. QA>

                  No, you constantly bring up antisemitism, not ‘Jewish examples’ because you’re a raving antisemite.

                  Don’t you realise you’re on the same side as the people you’re arguing with here?

            2. “Derpity-derp!”
              What is the point of that?
              As Bernstein’s point is obvious so is your analogue

          2. So we should allow the heckler’s veto?

            “You can’t say that, because someone might get angry and start a fight.”

            1. You should consider the effects of your policy on your overall goals, including the effects it may have on people who are disadvantaged by your policy.

            2. Could you link to your posts on the drone strike against Qasem Soleimani where you tell everyone worried that it would start a big war that they shouldn’t give Iran a heckler’s veto?

              Thanks.

    2. IF you don’t upset him he won’t beat you, so in a sense you’re the problem for upsetting him so much!

      1. I am sorry about the trauma you must have endured.

        1. Someone get this bird a cracker.

            1. I guess in a coke addled state he might not want a cracker…

              1. Bashing me will not heal your pain.

                1. Laughing at you makes everyone fell better.

      2. While you’re playing to a poor stereotype, in principle what you say is true.

        If you steal stuff from someone (which upsets them), and then they beat you for it, couldn’t your actions be the problem? Couldn’t they have reasonably been foreseen to result in a beating?

        Likewise, if excessive legal/illegal immigration prompts a nationalist backlash, which is damaging to democracy, couldn’t that be reasonably anticipated?

        1. If you steal stuff from someone (which upsets them), and then they beat you for it, couldn’t your actions be the problem?

          Immigrants aren’t stealing anything. They are not doing anything wrong.

          If I steal something from you the proper response is not to beat me up but to call the police.

          Likewise, if excessive legal/illegal immigration prompts a nationalist backlash, which is damaging to democracy, couldn’t that be reasonably anticipated?

          The problem is the ethno-nationalists are always going claim immigration is “excessive.”

          Again, you are endorsing the heckler’s veto, letting threats of force dissuade you. “Let in immigrants and we’ll storm the Capitol.” Fuck that.

          1. “Immigrants aren’t stealing anything. They are not doing anything wrong.”

            Legal immigrant no. Illegal immigrants? By definition, yes, they are doing something wrong.

            “If I steal something from you the proper response is not to beat me up but to call the police.”

            I’m using an analogy in line with Queenie’s. If you steal a big guy’s wallet and he catches you, you may be beat up.

            “The problem is the ethno-nationalists are always going claim immigration is “excessive.””

            But the number of them, and the degree of power they have, is going to depend on the image and number of immigrants. If you have a low foreign born population, there’s not going to be much power there. With a large foreign born population, the number of ethno-nationalists increase.

            The proper response is a MODERATE level of immigration. Currently, the US is at a 100 year high for the % foreign born in the country. It may be time to allow for some assimilation, before increasing that further.

          2. “you are endorsing the heckler’s veto, ”
            I disagree, bernard.
            You’ve adopted “heckler’s veto” as a slogan. But you also cannot wish the motivating factors out of existence
            Trying to see things for the point of view of others does not mean that you drive yourself into inaction, but that you actually think your moves a few deep at least.

        2. “If you steal stuff from someone (which upsets them), and then they beat you for it”

          This isn’t begging the question, it’s shave your head, don robes and leading the life of a mendicant.

          1. It is however a silly and a needless reply

      3. IF you don’t upset him he won’t beat you, so in a sense you’re the problem for upsetting him so much!

        You keep getting confused about the issue by switching to the topic of blame.

        You should not leave your keys in the ignition overnight while parked in a high crime area. Doing so is a dumb decision that will likely lead to you becoming an involuntary pedestrian. That does not mean that you did anything morally wrong by doing so, or that the person who absconds with your car isn’t fully to blame.

    3. Wouldn’t our founding fathers be described as “native nationalists?”

      If democracy means the will of the majority of the people, then any group of any persuasion takes control as long as they hold the majority position. It is not limited to “good people.”

      1. Our Founders loved immigration.

        1. Here’s a quiz for you.

          The foreign born % of population in the US. Was it higher in 1800? Or today?

          1. (With the obvious caveat that “Foreign Born” doesn’t include born in the US colonies before 1776 but technically under British rule).

        2. It depends, did they work without pay in agriculture? If so, yes, at least half of them did.

          lol

  3. Using the Cato Institute‐​Fraser Institute Human Freedom Index

    “The jurisdictions that took the top 10 places, in order, were New Zealand, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Denmark, Australia, Canada, Ireland, Estonia, and Germany and Sweden”

    New Zealand…Ok, Switizerland…OK… Hong Kong….O..wait a second. Hong Kong? Number 3 on this list? Really? You sure about that?

    1. Well, it was for 2018, the same year the U.S. dropped 9 places, for some reason.

    2. Hmm, of the top five, four are very hostile to immigration, and one is no longer free. Draw your own conclusions.

      1. 1 in 10 in Denmark are foreign born. 1 in 4 for New Zealand.

        1. Yes, but….

          “Foreign born” for New Zealand tends to mean people from the same ethnic groups. The top 3 migrant countries are Australia, the UK, and South Africa for New Zealand.

          1. So it isn’t about migration or population but about race/ethnic fit after all.

            1. If there’s an area where the immigration patterns are largely co-equal, with cultures that equate well, the effects of immigration are minimized.

              If 100,000 people from Connecticut immigrate to New York, and 100,000 people from New York immigrate to Connecticut, effects are minimized. Cultural differences are minimized, and immigration patterns are equal.

              If 100,000 people from New York immigrate to Connecticut, and only 1,000 from Connecticut to New York, you get a large displacement effect.

              If 100,000 people from New York immigrate to Italy, and 100,000 people from Italy immigrate to New York, you get cultural assimilation effects that take a while for the new immigrants to fit into the new culture.

              If 100,000 people from New York immigrate to Italy, and only 1,000 visa versa, you get both a displacement and cultural effect which makes things difficult.

              1. “from the same ethnic groups”

                That’s what you said, nice backpeddle into ‘culture’ (but then I imagine you think culture and ethnicity are fused).

                1. very often they are at least to some degree. The areas of cross-correlation can be very significant even when the overall cross-correlation is not large

          2. same ethnic groups

            Yeah, AL, you rather tip your pretty racist hand here.

            1. I did not see that; care to elucidate.

              1. QA: 1 in 10 in Denmark are foreign born. 1 in 4 for New Zealand.

                AL: “Foreign born” for New Zealand tends to mean people from the same ethnic groups.

                What the heck would ethnicity even come up, unless AL sees allowing too many of nonstandard ethnicity to be the *real* problem with immigration.

                1. I address this nicely in the response to Queenie. But, again, for your benefit.

                  If there’s an area where the immigration patterns are largely co-equal, with cultures that equate well, the effects of immigration are minimized.

                  If 100,000 people from Connecticut immigrate to New York, and 100,000 people from New York immigrate to Connecticut, effects are minimized. Cultural differences are minimized, and immigration patterns are equal.

                  If 100,000 people from New York immigrate to Connecticut, and only 1,000 from Connecticut to New York, you get a large displacement effect.

                  If 100,000 people from New York immigrate to Italy, and 100,000 people from Italy immigrate to New York, you get cultural assimilation effects that take a while for the new immigrants to fit into the new culture.

                  If 100,000 people from New York immigrate to Italy, and only 1,000 visa versa, you get both a displacement and cultural effect which makes things difficult.

    3. I suspect the numbers about Sweden are out of date and incomplete because of the surge of immigrants. The freedom and well being of refugees in limbo awaiting official status is not counted.

      Sweden systematically suppresses information about immigrants that might make government policy look bad.

      I immigrated to Sweden in the 70s, but back then it was a monoculture. They were kind to immigrants but the number of immigrants was so small that they had no influence on national stats.

  4. EVERYTHING FREE IN AMERICA — we suckers pay for it…

  5. Immigrants Vote With their Feet for Greater Socialism

    1. Those darn socialist Founders!

      Why do you hate America so much, ML?

  6. So, what exactly is the “keyhole solution” to the problem that the American-born children of most immigrants are disproportionately likely to become criminals?

    See, in practice, America has two kinds of immigrants. The first are highly-filtered immigrants who came through “normal” channels. The second are basically-unfiltered immigrants who entered the country either illegally or as refugees.

    And, well, it’s true that the immigrants themselves tend to be less criminal than native-born whites, things change in the second generation. Using ethnicity as a proxy for the two categories, the children of the highly-filtered immigrants (Indian, Chinese, Taiwanese, Korean, Filipino) are less criminal than native-born whites. On the other hand, the children of unfiltered immigration (Salvadoran, Guatemalan, Colombia, Ecuadorian, Peruvian, Mexican, Dominican, Cuban, Vietnamese, Laotian, Cambodian) are more criminal than native-born whites.

    Thus, we can expect that if you allow more “unfiltered” immigration into the US, you will increase the proportion of criminals a generation later.

    So, what’s your “keyhole” policy to offset this increase, in full knowledge of the restrictions of the Constitution (especially the 14th Amendment)?

    1. That’s because those in the second group are generally low IQ and genetically impulsive.

      The best solution is to go on a worldwide mission to exterminate the sub-90 IQ population. If they’re all dead, they won’t be here to immigrate or ruin any other country, and only the smart ones will be left to reproduce, leading to a more prosperous earth.

      1. The best solution is to go on a worldwide mission to exterminate the sub-90 IQ population.

        Starting with you, obviously.

        1. It’s interesting that white supremacists eugenics are always pretty dumb themselves.

  7. Another rousing meeting of Libertarians For Authoritarian, Bigoted, Cruel Immigration Policies And Practices, convened — as usual — at the comments section of a self-proclaimed libertarian(ish), (often) libertarian blog.

    Carry on, “often libertarians.”

  8. So, your go-to example of nationalists being more dangerous than immigrants is the January 6th Capitol riot? After a whole year of far more destructive and deadly riots by the other end of the political spectrum?

    Seriously?

    1. It’s also amusing that this was posted almost concurrently with the US Border Patrol announcing that they caught a batch of MS13 and other known gang members trying to cross the border in the current surge, trying to hide among the flood of other illegal entrants. I’m pretty sure the poem doesn’t go “Give me your tired, your poor, your drug-dealing torturing serial murderers!”

      1. They did not announce that they had caught a “batch.” They announced that they had caught 5. Which Fox News tried to spin into something scary. “Among hundreds of thousands of people trying to enter the country, a number you can count on one hand may have been members of one gang or another. They were trying to get into the country just like hundreds of thousands of other people, but we’ll pretend this is some kind of organized effort in which they’re trying to infiltrate the country by hiding among other migrants.”

    2. The ‘riots at the other end of the political spectrum’ weren’t immigrant things were they?

      1. Culturally? Antifa started out in Europe, it didn’t move to the US until quite recently. So it’s an example that a country can indeed suffer from assimilating the culture of immigrants to it.

        1. Antifa is a product of European immigrants?

          Outside agitators indeed….

          1. Yes, Antifa was a European import.

            1. European migrants brought it over?

              Because if you’re saying ‘ideas from here came to there’….

  9. These unassimilable people are forced on an American populace that doesn’t WANT them, and then we’re told, decades later after they’ve bred, “These are your countrymen! If you can’t electorally appeal to them, that’s your problem!”

    Why do the American people get no say on who joins them?

    1. I realize your side tried to cancel the last election when it didn’t turn out your way but elections have regularly been happening during the entire time of changes immigration and demographics, so your argument is a bunch of conspiracy adled derp as usual.

      1. No, it’s not. You people gloat that “changing demographics” makes leftist control destiny, and then say we aren’t allowed to try to stop it.

        Let’s get one thing straight. Americans never asked to be flooded with 100 million semi-retarded mestizos, Somalis, Yemenis, and other third worlders

        1. 1. You don’t know what ‘side’ I’m on other than that I’m not on your racist, genocidal, eugenics maniac one.

          2. Americans elected the representatives who established and then have not significantly changed our immigration laws.

          1. If you think 80 IQ Africans belong in America the same way 110 IQ Scotsmen, you are part of the problem.

            1. I’m telling you, it’s a waste of time to drop IQ data. People reject it out of hand. You’re not wrong, per se, but it’s not particularly persuasive.

              1. It will be when America collapses from financial insolvency and people start to wonder what happened.

                What would you suggest then? What is your method for persuading people that Somali Muslim “refugees” with 80 IQs don’t belong in America?

                1. If America collapses, it will be a financial collapse brought about by hyper inflation, and blacks aren’t the one turning the printing press to turbo mode.

                  That said, I agree that Somali immigration has not been a negative.

                  1. No, but the votes of blacks are instrumental in electing Democrats, which is why our spending continues the way it does, necessitating the printing.

                    If voting was limited to productive white men, government would be so small in size that you wouldn’t need to play these games with the currency.

                    I assume you meant “has been a negative.”

                    1. Democrats are going 90mph towards the fiscal cliff, Republicans about 30mph, with yea-olde military-industrial complex costs and welfare state benefits. Boomer social security payments and Medicare payments are driving to insolvency more than poor people on various welfare programs. That said, I would somehow limit the franchise to those not on welfare, if I could as well.

                      Yea, I meant “has been a negative.”

                    2. Agreed with you, but Republicans are going toward the cliff as well because they can’t win if they run on a platform of cutting spending on the entitlements.

                      Limit voting to productive men, which doesn’t necessarily have to be white, as most non-white men are unproductive, and you’ll have a government open to logic and critical reasoning and not emotional arguments like “But think of the children!” which is a hallmark of women.

                    3. Once buying votes with borrowed money is on the table, it’s automatic: Any politician who seriously tries to balance the budget gets outbid by somebody willing to borrow.

                      Even state prohibitions on running deficits are only partially effective.

                      I figure the last chance we really had to get out of this trap was in ’95, when Gingrich promised a vote on the balanced budget amendment, as part of his ‘Contract’. But he deliberately brought multiple versions to the floor for a vote, so that everybody who needed to could vote for one, without any risk of one of the versions actually getting sent to the states.

                      Our last chance, and he deliberately threw it away. I am not fond of Gingrich.

                    4. Brett, yes. And now, the debt is so out of control that the Fed realizes there’s no solution other than inflating it away. Which is why they’ve been printing trillions like it’s nothing.

              2. I’m basically a Nazi too, but it’s best we don’t advertise it as our brand is unpopular right now!

            2. I think you should take your racist, pseudo-science un-American ideas elsewhere.

              1. Queen, racist pseudo science is as American as apple pie. You’re not familiar with the Progressive Era much, I suspect.

              2. The only psuedo-science comes from you leftists.

        2. Then how did you get in A78?

      2. Cancel? No. Audit the results, yes.

        Why do the Dems fight so hard against that, unlike in 2000 or 2016? Hmmm….let us see what the Occam’s Razor answer would be on that one.

        1. 1. Nope, Trump was pretty clear the goal was to send it back to the states so gerrymandered GOP state houses could pick the winner. Also, normal audits were done. Nothing satisfies the conspiracy theorist, who just keeps moving their goal posts.

          2. Nothing in 2000 or 2016 was comparable. No POTUS candidate for the Dems engaged in such a widespread and sustained effort to resist the results, no similar amount of Dem Congresscritters did. One wonders your motives for peddling such obviously inapt analogies.

          1. The mechanics of what *could* have happened were akin to the other disputed elections like 1824 or 1876. Not some conspiracy theory, actual history.

            The clear goal of the left was to defeat Trump, and the propaganda message was a 180 reversal of 2016, that to even question the election system was a conspiracy theory. Time Magazine even did a big cover story on it, where they admitted it. This was unlike in 2016, when the left’s particular flavor was that Trump with Russia hacked the voting machines. We spend 3 years investigating it, with a Special Counsel. But in 2020, can’t have any questions about that, now can we? Poor little AZ can’t do a tiny little audit.

            You see where this is going?

            1. ” This was unlike in 2016, when the left’s particular flavor was that Trump with Russia hacked the voting machines. ”

              Did a majority of Dem representative object to the vote on this ground?

              Again, are you that ignorant of how inapt your analogy is, or that dishonest?

              1. Most Democrats think, to this day, that Russia tampered with vote totals. It’s unclear if Mueller investigated this, if he didn’t, he should have. Russia hacked our election was their watchword for 4 years.

                Are you ignorant of how silly you look (of course you are)? The left questioned the integrity of an election for 4 years and got a special counsel investigation on it, and then now, using their allies in big tech, are now saying you cannot question the integrity of the 2020 election?

                Seriously, you need to read the Time Mag story on how they did it.

            2. The clear goal of the left was to defeat Trump,

              I like how you try to make this sound sinister. Um, yes, that’s how elections work.

              This was unlike in 2016, when the left’s particular flavor was that Trump with Russia hacked the voting machines.

              I will not argue that nobody made this claim. Some people did. But, no, that was not a mainstream argument. The argument was that Russia interfered with the election, such as by hacking into the DNC’s servers, and by spreading misinformation. Not by changing votes.

      3. P.S. The “great replacement” is no longer a conspiracy theory. After 2018, the NYT admitted it. You need to update your software.

        1. It’s only wrong to talk about it when you are making it sound like a bad thing. If liberals do it to gloat about their coming political advantage, that’s just fine!

        2. Bullshit. You’re full of it.

          1. This is just but one of the numerous “we’ve won, demographics is destiny” articles from the Times and like outlets.

            https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/22/us/white-americans-minority-population.html

            1. Holy Equivocation Fallacies, Batman!

              1. Did you at least read the opening paragraphs? I think not, otherwise you’d not accuse me of an equivocation fallacy.

                The great replacement is using immigration to end the white majority in America. Europe too, but let’s focus on America.

                Again, you need to update your software. The left no longer denies it’s a conspiracy that old white republicans are dying off while being replaced with immigrants of color, they are in the, “there is nothing you can do to stop it” phase.

                1. Unfortunately for them, white men pay all of the taxes, and keep America running.

                  1. I think you mean fortunately for them.

                    1. Not once white men are such a small percentage of the population that no one is left to keep the lights on.

            2. That’s not saying anything like your white nationalist conspiracy theory

    2. The American people have never like who joined them. They didn’t like the Irish, the Germans, the Italians, and Asians of all nationalities. And yet we did accept them and included them as part of our nation. Those seeking to come to America are different but the response is the same.

      1. The Irish, Germans, Italians and Asians didn’t have IQs a full standard deviation below the mean.

        1. True, but you know, the white Anglo-Saxon Prods of the Progressive Era had a whole hell of a lot of negative things to say about drunk Irish Catholics (and they were troublemakers), and swarthy Mediterranean papist Italians (and there were a fair number of anarchists or commies among them), and the whole country was worried about the Asians (for a variety of fairly valid reasons, the Tongs to start with). The Chinese Exclusion Act passed in 1882, long before the 1921 act that limited European immigration. Most people were neutral on the Germans, until WWI at least.

          1. Of course. But the standard argument of the left “the WASPs of the past said the same thing about the Irish and Italians, and they turned out fine, so therefore, the mass immigration of third worlders from Latin America and Africa will turn out fine too” does not stand up to logic.

            1. Well, yes and no.

              One of the ways that WASPs destroyed Catholic ethnic neighborhoods (Poles, Italians, Irish) and even Jew neighborhoods after WWII was to put low income housing projects and move the blacks in. It ruined Philly and such, as there is now an ungovernable class. Chicago largely dodged this, as Mayor Daley (while corrupt) got the projects put off into a corner of the city with a highway to cut them off.

              The Catholics, whose primary identity was their religious affiliation, once in the suburbs, got “consumerized” and “Americanized” and “atomized.” It’s not even a conspiracy that this was done on purpose.

              1. I see it the other way around. The Catholic ethnic neighborhoods in places like Brooklyn and Philadelphia were destroyed by Jewish liberals moving blacks in.

                1. While there was some “block busting” in the days when red-lining was common, that wasn’t government policy. It was the WASPs in government that busted up the neighborhoods with urban renewal programs and low income housing. In a way, it’s not so different than the way the left today wants to end single family occupancy housing to put low income housing in the suburbs.

                  1. Sure, but I’m talking about post-1960s. All of the desegregation cases were led by white, disproportionately Jewish, liberals. Not working class Catholics, and not WASPs.

                    1. I’m not talking about the desegregation cases, I’m talking about the urban renewal and low income housing programs and bussing up to the north black workers for the factories, all of which started well before the 1960s.

                    2. Okay, got it, you’re talking about the great migration. I was thinking of the school bussing, desegregation, banning zoning requirements that only allow single family homes, and so forth.

                    3. Biden seems to be determined to go forward with that last. (Banning single family home zoning.)

                      The Democrats only really reliably win in high density urban areas, so they want to force areas that are presently lower density to either depopulate (The rural areas.) or become more urban. (The suburbs.)

                    4. And what better way to do that than destroy manufacturing jobs and other things that work well in more rural areas, and replace them with “tech” and “finance” jobs in cities?

        2. The Aktenturds back then absolutely accused them of having those kinds of congenital failures.

        3. And why do you think that present immigrants do?
          Can you be that stupid?

          1. Read the Bell Curve and come back to me

            1. I have forgotten more statistics that you will ever know. Your entire construct is a feeble house of cards.

      2. The American people have been the most welcoming, generous, diverse, and open people of any people in history.

    3. Well, I don’t recall being asked if I wanted you to join the American people. Don’t think you’d like the answer if we voted on that.

      1. My family has been here many generations.

        1. Could be. Every group has a lowest 10%tile

  10. The interesting thing in the article is the the fact that people will migrate to places with more freedom even when that freedom is only marginally better. This defines the problem at our border so well. No matter how nasty the former administration was they could not stop people from coming because the alternative for those people is worse.
    If you want to stem the flow you need to find ways to make things better for people in their home countries. This doesn’t mean just dumping money in countries, but actually looking for solutions that will work in the immigrants home country. Like all things it will require hard work and money. That said we are not getting much for the money we have spend to date on border security.

    1. “This doesn’t mean just dumping money in countries, but actually looking for solutions that will work in the immigrants home country. ”

      Yes, but that is called interference. Just like when the Russians tried to make better solutions for the USA in 2016.

    2. ” No matter how nasty the former administration was they could not stop people from coming because the alternative for those people is worse.”

      Actually, illegal border crossings dropped dramatically in 2017, until the illegal immigrants realized that Congress wasn’t actually going to allow Trump to close the border. Then they started climbing again.

      Here’s a good graph.

      At one point the rate had gotten down to about 15K a month, a third the usual rate. Then, as I say, Congress made it clear they weren’t going to let Trump seal the border, and things got nasty. Peaked at nearly ten times that, in May of 2019. (You’ll remember, that’s when all the open borders apologists were using obsolete numbers to claim there wasn’t any border surge.) Then he managed to beat it back down again by pressuring Mexico to block the caravans.

      Actually had it back down to the best of 2017 levels, before the Democrats started promising they’d take down his wall.

      1. This year’s numbers are blowing a hole through the ceiling, of course. March was over 170K, and the preliminary numbers for April are looking as bad.

        1. And the economic numbers are just as bad. Record money printing, record deficits. Basically, we’re paying for all of this “diversity” by printing money and sending those printed dollars to China, where they’re hoarding them to buy up our real estates.

      2. “Actually, illegal border crossings dropped dramatically in 2017, until the illegal immigrants realized that Congress wasn’t actually going to allow Trump to close the border. Then they started climbing again.”

        These illterate, unintelligent peasants were closely following US current events!

        1. Yeah, this is just made up to fit the graph.

          Congressional internal politics does not create immigration rates.

          1. C’mon. Do you actually think that de facto US policies make no difference?

            1. No, I don’t. Do you know the de facto German policy based on the latest election? The de facto UK policy? The de facto Mexican policy?

              1. I am surprised at you. That is all I can say. I don’t follow German politics or immigration except to KNOW that Merkel encourgaed Syrian refugee immigration because of declining German population and looming social benefits obligations into the future. That Is one reason that I don’t agree with your dismissal of and idea based on no factual evidence.

              2. No, I don’t. Would I make it my business to learn, if I was considering moving there? Damn straight I would.

        2. You think people considering illegally immigrating to a country don’t follow events there?

          It’s just a coincidence that an administration opposed to Trump’s immigration policies takes over, and suddenly illegal immigration is about 10 times higher? It’s just coincidence that the caravans restarted when Biden won the election?

          1. Not to that granularity, no. They’re poor and desperate.

            1. They may be poor, by our standards, and desperate, but they’re not stupid.

              Trump takes office, and the illegal immigration rate drops to a third of what it had been a year earlier. Why? Hondurans suddenly became less poor and desperate?

              No, of course not. They decided the trip wasn’t worth it, because they wouldn’t be able to enter the country.

              Trump loses reelection, and shortly after Biden is in office, the illegal immigration rate is ten times what it had been a year earlier. Again, because Honduras suddenly was ten times poorer?

              No, because potential illegal immigrants decided they’d be let in, and Biden terminated the deal Trump had with Mexico to stop the caravans.

              Look, we are not the only people in the world with agency! We are not the only people in the world who respond to incentives, and actually think about what they’re going to do!

              Illegal immigration isn’t like a tide or a thunderstorm, it’s people making decisions, and they’re responding to information.

              1. Yes. Immigration and the browning of America was not inexorable, based on some outside force. It was based on decisions we made to allow it to happen.

    3. Actually, it’s very easy to stop the illegal immigration crisis. The main thing you need to do is just stop the open borders catch and release policy.

      Figuratively, our government has put up a large neon sign on the border saying “Open for trafficking” and rolled out the welcome mat. The government is teaching that you just need to learn a certain magic word in English, “asylum.” Easy. If you can find a child to bring with you (doesn’t matter whose), even better. The consequences of our policies are inhumane and murderous.

      The Trump administration fixed this by negotiating agreements with numerous countries south of the border and the “Remain in Mexico” policy. Those achievements are being reversed for no good reason by open-borders zealots and globalist ideologues.

      1. There’s a good reason for them. It’ll turn America permanently blue.

      2. The government is teaching that you just need to learn a certain magic word in English, “asylum.” Easy.

        You clearly know *nothing* about how asylum requests work.

        1. Yes, I know exactly how they work. They get released into the U.S. while their BS claims are adjudicated. Then, they ignore court hearings and settle into the underground. By the time they’re caught, they demand “compassionate” amnesty, on the grounds that they’ve been here so long and sired “citizen” children!

    4. The interesting thing in the article is the the fact that people will migrate to places with more freedom even when that freedom is only marginally better.

      I think this is entirely false. The migrants are not coming here for freedom. They are arguably less free than when they started. Most of the places they came from, they could vote. Now it is illegal for them to vote. Most of the places they came from they could legally work, now it is illegal to work. What they are trading their existing freedom for is opportunity and some semblance of the rule of law.

      As for fixing other people’s countries. What amazing hubris. You can’t even fix what’s in your own backyard.

  11. If America’s immigration levels were subjected to a democratic vote, it wouldn’t win.

    1. it certainly woudln’t have 10 years ago or longer. Now, it might, as the “vote” includes the third worlders and the descendants of these third worlders

    2. We’re not a direct democracy, so unclear why you think that matters.

      1. You seem to think it matters when you trot out stupid polls on background checks and “assault weapons.”

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