Imagine you live> on a remote island with just 30 other people. You have a small economy a few farmers, a doctor, a couple of people making clothes, a shopkeeper, even some lazy slackers. One day 10 new people get shipwrecked onto the island. They re peaceful and hard working with a variety of abilities: One guy is skilled at fixing houses, another is an excellent cook or mechanic. Some are good managers, one invents new technology and others are just good at following assignments.
In America, this would be called an immigration crisis, and politicians on our little island would immediately send troops to the beach to prevent these illegals from coming ashore, lowering wages, stealing jobs and generally ruining the country.
Yet if you care about your life, it is unquestionably in your best interest to let them stay.
In a free economy, more people means more new products, services, inventions, scientific discoveries, industries and wealth. Because it allows even greater specialization of labor, instead of one doctor, you d have three each focusing on becoming experts at specific kinds of medicine. An additional engineer might specialize in more efficient building techniques, freeing up others who previously laid brick to create new jobs and new types of wealth. The pie isn t redistributed but grown.
If we shrunk America s population back to colonial times, would any of us be able to buy an AppleiPhone, or Blue Coconut Slush from Sonic? Considering more than half the population toiled away on farmsand food supply has grown exponentially. Would our lives really be better had Alexander Graham Bell, an illegal immigrant back in 1873, been unable to scale the barbed wire fence at the Canadian border?
I know of no other issue, not health care, taxes or finance, which elicits such emotion, vitriol and ire.
But along with eliminating the entitlement state, open immigration in the United States would be an unquestionable boon to the economy. Because there is no limit on the amount of wealth and prosperity that can be created, we should be just as glad to have more immigrants coming to this country as we should be to have more shipwrecked workers on our deserted island. This applies to Mexicans as well as to other workers many of them highly skilled who are senselessly prohibited from coming here to produce.
There is nothing objectively criminal about being a foreigner, working at a construction site, or renting an apartment. Beyond screening procedures for known threats, Islamic terrorists, those with infectious diseases or other obvious risks, the doors to this country and the ability to work and live here should be open.
"The O'Reilly Factor", Fox News Channel, 2/14/07
Hard-working immigrants of all abilities and skill levels are an unquestionable economic benefit. The fact that foreigners are eager to pick crops, clean houses, bus tables and be productive allows more of us to afford cheaper food and better services, giving us even more wealth to enjoy and invest. It s the taxes, spending, regulations and entitlements -- most of which they don t even receive -- which drain the economy dry.
Alexander Hamilton (founding father), Domingo Ghirardelli (chocolatier) John Jacob Bausch (founder, Bausch & Lomb), Andrew Carnegie (industrialist), Joseph Pulitzer (publisher), Johnny Weissmuller (Olympic athlete) and Bob Hope (entertainer) would have all been considered illegal immigrants and refused entry if they came to this country today. How much wealthier are our lives now because they were not? And how many future luminaries have we let die at the border waiting to come in and make their mark?