2002 November 27 Wednesday
Immigration Not Demographic Solution In France, USA

A French thinktank has released a report arguing that mass immigration will not provide a solution to the French economy from the problem of a shrinking population. The typical immigrant is too unskilled, pays too few taxes, and will likely demand as much or more in social services.

Moreover, the Plan team stress that their survey of immigrants workers in France suggests very strongly that they do not provide the kinds of skills that the French economy will need in the future, and that the relatively low economic performance of immigrants suggests that they are unlikely to be net contributors to the welfare and pension system.

"Working immigrants are concentrated at the bottom of the ladder," the report finds. "They are twice as likely to be unemployed as the national average, and twice as likely to have no vocational qualifications. They are three times more likely to remain in jobs earning the minimum wage, without promotion. Manual and semi-skilled workers account for only 25 percent of the French labor force, but 48.5 percent of all manual workers are immigrants."

Of course, the same thing is happening in the US. Hotels, restaurants, and other low wage service industries get cheap labor but the taxpayers pay for this in taxes for health, education, criminal justice, and other functions of government because low skill immigrants pay so little taxes but demand more services:

The woman, a housekeeper for a major hotel chain, moved a year ago with her husband and their three children to Nebraska, a state with a fast-growing immgrant population. She makes $7.04 an hour, and her husband, a dishwasher at a restaurant, makes $7.25 an hour. Each earns more than the minimum wage, but a recent study of living costs in Nebraska found that in a two-parent family with two children, each parent would need to make at least $10 an hour for the family to be self-sufficient.

Because the couple's three children are American citizens, they receive Medicaid, but the parents are uninsured. They speak limited English, and, because of their residency status, they are barred from or have difficulty gaining access to language and job-training programs.

Allowing the growth of a low skill immigrant population that demands more services, makes low wages, and demands more services from government is a good formula for a higher tax, bigger government socialist future. Currently the state of California faces at least a $21 billion dollar budget deficit and if the economy does not improve that deficit could soar to $30 billion. That would be nearly $1000 per Californian. Given that many poor immigrant Californians do not make much money or pay much taxes and others are children and elderly the cost for working middle class and upper class Californians could run into the thousands per person.

How can immigrants pay for the medical care of old people when the immigrants are low skilled and can't even afford their own medical insurance?

Health care costs are rising at close to 10 percent a year. Drug prices are skyrocketing. Premiums are increasing. The 6.6 million uninsured Californians are using expensive emergency rooms for health care and can't pay the bills.

The Medi-Cal program for medical care for Californians was budgeted at $9.8 billion this year but the total cost is expected to be $10.4 billion and the cost for 2004 is projected to be $11.8 billion. LA County of course has a huge concentration of legal and illegal Hispanic immigrants and it has a huge number of uninsured on top of those who qualify for Medi-Cal:

The county has the highest number of uninsured in the nation -- 2 million people who make too much to qualify for Medi-Cal but without jobs that provide health insurance.

A Third World population is growing in California.

The Public Policy Institute of California revealed that a fifth of California's youngest children, those under 5 years old, are growing up poor. Indeed, the poverty rate for under-5 kids in California is higher than it was two decades ago and higher than what it is now in the rest of the United States. Overall, the PPIC study found, more than 40 percent of California children live in low-income families and the child poverty rate is highest in the rural San Joaquin Valley.

These people can't afford health care and so more affluent taxpayers are footing the bill:

The PPIC study found that nearly half of all children in California have at least one foreign-born parent, three-fourths of them are Latino, and more than half of immigrant parents lack high school diplomas.

"We found that Hispanic children in foreign-born families have the highest poverty levels (36 percent)," said Deborah Reed, one of the PPIC researchers. "California has far more first-generation immigrant families than the rest of the country, and because those families are often poorer, we find greater numbers of needy children."

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2002 November 27 10:52 AM  Immigration Demographics

Sheila said at January 22, 2003 10:21 AM:

Interesting article. However, I am looking for an interesting article about migration and population issues that would be suitable for middle school. Since 1/3 of our population is hispanic, I don't think I would feel comfortable presenting your article to them. Do you know of any that talk about these issues in Africa, for example? Something not so close to home? Then if they want to apply that knowledge closer to home, they can.

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