Friday, April 21, 2006

Immigration Reform

Dobber was correct in a comment that he made about my immigration post last week.  I should have been more specific about the problems with the current system and the necessary reforms.  

Broadly, governments should allow any activity that people want to pursue as long as it does not infringe on the rights of others.  In the case of immigration, the activity that government is wrongly trying to prevent is moving to this country to contribute to the economy.  One may argue that the presence of immigrants lowers wages and increases unemployment for US natives, but this argument assumes a static economy, which is dubious in light of the empirical data.  

The reforms necessary to bring government policy in line with reality are: 1. Grant any citizen of a friendly country a temporary work permit upon request so that anyone who wishes can contribute to the US economy; 2. Grant some kind of temporary legal status to the 11 million undocumented workers currently in the US; 3. Allow temporary workers to earn permanent legal status and US citizenship.  

This is essentially the same immigration policy that the United States employed in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.  This policy worked then to create the country that we know today and it will work in the future to continually reinvigorate our country’s fabric.  


DOBBER said...

I have not done my homework...and as such i really don't even know what the debate is about. Suredly, most of the people "protesting" don't know

anyway, i definitely agree with your steps to what should be the immigration policy. basically, allow people to immigrate. what is the hang-up? why are there soooo many "illegal immigrants".

my guess is that the government has put toooooo much red tape in the process, so it is nearly impossible for people to immigrate legally. also, the government has set up so many ridiculous "payroll" taxes and "social security" taxes, and "corporate" taxes, etc etc etc that it puts those willing employers at a disadvantage to those employers that simply employee illegal labor and avoid the taxes.

a smart dude who lived a long time ago realized this:

“Where there is an income tax, the just man will pay more and the unjust less on the same amount of income.” — Plato

DOBBER said...

bangert, here's a good article about exactly what you're calling for:,0,6429773.story?coll=la-news-comment-opinions