2005 April 05 Tuesday
Hispanics Have Taken Bulk Of New Jobs In Last 4 Years

Edward Rubinstein pours over the latest employment numbers and long term trends.

From the start of the Bush Administration in January 2001 through March 2005:

  • Total household employment rose 2,730,000, or 2.0 percent
  • Hispanic employment rose by 2,312,000, or by 14.3 percent
  • Non-Hispanic employment rose by 416,000, or by 0.3 percent

Hispanic immigrants are displacing American workers and driving down wages. The unemployment rate does not tell the whole story for a couple of reasons. First, the number of people in the labor force is probably larger than the government assumes because the government is undercounting illegals. Also, in order to be counted as unemployed you have to be classified as in the labor force. A lot of workers have become discouraged and their labor market participation has declined. The non-Hispanic part of the US working age population probably grew by a lot more than 0.3 percent over the last 4 years.

America does not need a bigger lower class. The Bush Administration seems intent on turning the United States into Latin America with a small middle class and larger upper and especially lower classes. I wonder if Bush even understands what he is doing. My guess is he has deluded himself.

Former Colorado Governor Richard Lamm says illegal immigrant labor costs are subsidized for employers by the taxpayers. Lamm goes on to list other ways that taxpayers subsidize illegal immigrant labor including medical care.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2005 April 05 02:33 AM  Immigration Economics


Comments
Rick Darby said at April 5, 2005 9:46 AM:

The country is quickly reaching the "tipping point" at which illegal immigration will overwhelm society's social infrastructure. It's like the proverbial dream where you're watching something frightening happen and you struggle but are paralyzed.

We are powerless. It's not that people don't understand, at least on an intuitive level if not statistically, the consequences of our foolish immigration policy. The problem is that the most powerful institutions of our society -- the imperial judiciary, corporate America, and the mainstream media -- are in an unholy alliance to keep the floodgates open. Their motives may differ from one another, but they are united in favoring open borders and imported peasant labor. It would be hard enough to overcome any one of those forces; there is no countervailing influence I can see anywhere that can take on all three.

If the U.S. does in fact devolve into a Third World country of corporate and government mandarins ruling a huge underclass of largely Hispanic drones, this is not a country I want to live out the rest of my life in.

Commenters: Do you have any suggestions for emigration? Austalia? New Zealand?

I'm serious.

Mik said at April 5, 2005 11:59 AM:

Real employment picture is probably worse than these data show. From 2001-2005 USA took in 4 mil legals and 4-12 mil illegals. If 50% of new immigrants took jobs they may have displaced, at minimum, 2 mil of natives and illegals already with jobs ( (4 + 4) * 50% - 2).

Labor participation had dropped significantly under Bush regime, it is safe to assume that most drop-outs are US citizens or legal residents with resources to support themselfes without a job. Drop-outs or "discouraged" job seekers are not counted in unemployment stats, that is why official unemployment rate is relatively low.

If job market would have been better, paradoxically unemployment rate would spike, at least initially, as discouraged workers start looking for a job.

Information industry lost almost one million jobs, at the same time industry managed to bring in via H1B, L1, etc importation schemes a few hundred thousand foreign workers. All displayed natives.

Daveg said at April 5, 2005 1:03 PM:


This has to become the very top issue for voters in order for things to change. For example, would you vote for an immigration restrictionist regardless as to their position on, for example, taxes, abortion, gay marriage or foreign poilicy?

Right now, many people will let one or more of these issues overide there position on immigration.

Immigration is increasing in prority as an issue for many, but I don't know if it is too little too late.

(Be sure to call you Senator today or tomorrow regarding the AgJobs bill).

PacRim Jim said at April 5, 2005 1:59 PM:

Much of the money is repatriated to poor relatives in Mexico, thereby strengthening the hand of the ruling class in Japan. I cannot understand why Americans would be upset about greater Mexican influence in the American political process, in this best of all possible worlds (or should I say mundos).

Jim said at April 5, 2005 5:37 PM:

i think most people in this country are the descendents of immigrants, and most immigrants are willing to work hard to simply improve the lives of their children and grandchildren by ensuring they get a proper education. this is the american dream. mexicans today are not much different than poles of a generation ago or irish before them. give it a couple decades and we'll celebrate cinco de mayo the way we celebrate st. patty's day and pulaski day (at least in chicago). then everyone will complain about the new immigrants from wherever. industrious people improve our country.

Jim said at April 5, 2005 5:45 PM:

besides, i'd rather have manufacturing jobs in this country for new immigrants than importing the same goods from elsewhere.

Randall Parker said at April 5, 2005 6:01 PM:

Jim,

Your assumption that the Mexicans will turn out like the Poles rests on a false assumption about the Mexicans and the Poles.

Randall Parker said at April 5, 2005 6:14 PM:

Jim,

Also, Mexicans have been coming to the United States for a long time. Therefore we have data on how Hispanics do who are 2nd, 3rd, and 4th generation descendants of immigrants. You should look at that data. The Hispanics are very obviously not becoming like Poles.

Jim said at April 6, 2005 8:36 AM:

in chicago, they sure seem to be playing the same sorta roles - living in the same old immigrant neighborhoods, working in restaurants. it also seems to me that mexican neighborhoods, while quite poor, don't suffer from the same levels of crime - drugs & gangbangers. i just read the previous post you referenced above, and isn't the organized crime problem similar to those of italian immigrants?

and maybe with regards to the intelligence thing, that's because the smart ones came here.

my main point that i was trying to make is that most immigrants i know are very hard working and that's the type of american spirit that has fueled our country for years (and at least reasonably resourceful if they managed to get here in the first place). granted - maybe chicago is better suited for integration of new immigrants than other places, particularly rural america, and proper limitations on immigration have always been needed (and frankly i don't know the numbers comparing past immigration levels to current). still, i think that some level of immigrants are a healthy addition to this country.

Daveg said at April 6, 2005 9:01 AM:


Jim, perhaps you should visit a welfar office or hospital emergency room sometime. Or perhaps you should visit an elementary school in Southern California or Colorado.

The resources are overwhelmed. You never saw this type of flood from any ethnic group, even the Irish.

Also, all the statisics say your impression regarding the level of crime are wrong. Illegal immigrants make up a huge portion of the jail population - much higher than their overall numbers.

The mafia was a big problem, but the number of Italian immigrants was puny compared to the number of Mexican immigrants we are seeing now. Also, on average, the Italians were much better educated and/or had much higher skill levels (My great grandfather was a taylor, for example).

I won't even discuss the illegal/legal difference, which you don't address.

The point is, we need a huge pause in immigration while we digest the newcomers we already have.

Daveg said at April 6, 2005 9:03 AM:

should be tailor.

birch barlow said at April 6, 2005 9:03 AM:

Comparing modern immigrants to those of the 19th and early 20th c. is extremely inapt, to say the least. One often speaks of the poverty and low levels of education of those immigrants, but one has to remember that the average non-immigrant American ca. 1900 was very poor and very poorly educated by today's standards. Of course, very few Irish, Italians, Poles, etc. became educated professionals ca. 1900, but then again those opportunties simply were not available back then to immigrants or the large majority of natives. Professional jobs were rare and education was minimal. Even the most intelligent and ambitious immigrant (or native for that matter) simply did not have the opportunity to become highly educated and become a professional.

What is so disturbing about Hispanic immigrants today is that they are so poor and uneducated relative to natives and remain so after multiple generations, in spite of the many opportunities available today. Also, there are other immigrant groups that are quite successful compared to Hispanics. I don't think there was any immigrant group gap comparable to the East Asian/Hispanic or South Asian/Hispanic gap in the late 19th or early 20th century.

scottynx said at April 6, 2005 9:29 AM:

Steve Sailer has written about how anecdotal evidence is probably what allows U.S. elites to believe that hispanics are integrating well. The Hispanics that U.S. elites most commonly have to deal with are probably a much more successful (or at least law-abiding) group than the average Hispanic (which, almost by definition, is closer to what most non-elite U.S. citizens have to live with).


Randall Parker said at April 6, 2005 10:19 AM:

Jim,

Poles were relatively ignorant when they came here but advanced to much higher average educational attainments and incomes. Hispanics do not do that. We know what they do over a period of generations. On average they are much less educated, earn less, and use more government aid for medical care and other things. They also commit crimes at much higher rates, and not just the youths in gangs either.

As for your contention that maybe the smarter ones come here: The average Mexican immigrant has an 8th grade education. Also, the Coleman Report and other studies find a white-Hispanic IQ gap in America of about .6 to .8 standard deviations (and it is my impression more of the studies bunch up toward the higher number).

We are increasingly competing against smart Chinese, Koreas, and other East Asians. How do hardworking gardeners and maids help us do that when they do not pay much in taxes and the rest of us have to pay for their education and medical care and for a much higher crime rate?

I can understand why someone would argue for an immigration policy aimed at brain draining the world of everyone that has an IQ above 130. But I do not understand how we will get anything other than a net harm from importing a larger permanent lower class.

GUYK said at April 6, 2005 12:18 PM:

Randall, I have problems with the sieve at the southern border for security reasons as well as illegal immigration. Although I suspect that educational levels of second plus generations of Mexcians have more to do with social conditioning than with hereditary IQs, I do agree that illegal immigration must stop.

There will always be a need for labor at the lowest end of the pay scale no matter who does it or what the low end pays. As a sage told me once, if everyone has a PHS then there would be PHDs digging ditchs. The fact is that there are some jobs that many people will not do unless it means work or no food. As long as we have the social safty nets to keep people from starving these jobs will go largely unfilled. Backbreaking agri work is an example. Once filled in the south by poor black Americans most of these jobs are now done by Mexicans. I have heard the argument that this type of work could be done by machines/robots and if the labor costs were high enough someone would invent the machine. This may or may not be true. Some agri work needs human judgement-even though a high IQ is not required for this judgement it is human judgement never-the less. Business is in business to make a profit. As long as labor is a significant cost of doing business then business wilcontinue to look for cheaper labor.

On an earlier post I stated a recommendation that would help stop illegal imigration. Just make the costs of hiring illegal prohibitive. Massive fines for first offenses and jail for repeat offenses should make an employer think before hiring cheap illegal labor. Although the bleeding hearts will bleed, it might behoove society to cut off social help for illegals-or at least make it a requirement for social services to report illegals to immigration authorities.

I

Randall Parker said at April 6, 2005 1:01 PM:

GUYK,

You ought to read The Bell Curve and Jensen's "g" Factor and then see if you still think that heredity doesn't play a big role in determining IQ. I think it obviously does. One just has to read the relevant research and the answer becomes extremely obvious.

I take issue with your statement:

There will always be a need for labor at the lowest end of the pay scale no matter who does it or what the low end pays.

First off, US minimum wage is half what it was in the late 1960s. The bottom 10% have suffered a large decline in real wages over the last 35 years. Unskilled labor has become much less valuable.

Second, need? The price of labor in a free market is the point at which supply and demand meet. There is no absolute need some amount of manual labor. If there were less manual laborers around we'd use more machines and change how we organize things to use less of it. Yes, I see that you recognize that machines could be developed. But consider the implications of your understanding: Need is rarely absolute.

What you ought to be saying is that there will always be a demand for labor if the price of labor is allowed to fall low enough.

As for jobs that require low or high IQ: increase the supply of people of a given IQ and the price of labor for that IQ level will drop. For low IQ people that price will stay down far longer than it will for high IQ people. Why? High IQ people can develop new products and processes and industries that increase the demand for their labor. Low IQ people can not do that.

In the longer run I think we will hit a point where demand for low IQ people collapses. Look at horses for a historical analogy. The demand for their use as transportation devices collapsed when cars were developed. Now only really affluent people have them as expensive pets.

Engineer-Poet said at April 6, 2005 1:19 PM:

Illegal immigrants would not come here for work if nobody would hire them.  If it's desirable to get rid of illegal immigrant workers, it makes sense to take their associated costs off the taxpayer and put it onto their employers.

This suggests a legal strategy:  states audit employers whose employee records (mis-matched names and SSNs, for example) suggest illegals, and bill the cost of those illegals (including state and local education costs) back to the employers.  You'd see the employment of illegals drop like a rock, and the taxpayers would be really happy.

Engineer-Poet said at April 6, 2005 1:22 PM:

And there is a solution to the lack of volunteers for stoop-labor too:  prisoners.  Why should we be paying illegal immigrants when we could have burglars and car thieves doing the work for free?

Jim said at April 6, 2005 2:46 PM:

Randall,
i only skimmed through your reference on crime rates, but it seems that hispanics are better than black people, and they've been in this country considerably longer than hispanics. this tends to agree with my personal perspective in chicago - i've once lived in black neighborhoods and experienced overt hostility and witnessed more crime. i've also lived in mexican neighborhoods that were much better off with respect to crime. of course the white neighborhoods are the lowest crime, but also substantially more expensive. the report seems to lump all hispanics together, which may be problematic in light of your previous reference highlighting central american gangs.

i put little faith in broad based iq measures, and it seems that iq and educational levels were confounded. i know my grandfather had ziltch education but was quite intelligent. it also seems to me that much inherited iq is probably a result of upbringing at very young ages. i know that there is a sampling effect with asians on iq that make it to the u.s.(they are the vast majority of my personal competition for jobs, and seem to be the very cream of the crop from their home countries).

there is the additional point that i don't is being considered in the overall calculation - the fact that labor-intensive jobs will be done with cheap labor, if not in the u.s. than abroad. i think it is preferable to use cheap labor in the u.s. than import goods made with cheap labor from abroad. many of these factories have an assortment of high-paying and low-paying jobs and when the factory leaves the country, all associated jobs go with it. and what of the american ingenuity - is this not partly attributed to the immigration filter that only allows in people with a long term perspective that involves a lot of crappy work for little pay for many years?

all that being said, i DO agree that there should be limits on immigration. the best point, imho, that you made was regarding the depression of wages at the low end as evidence of over-supply of labor.

Jim said at April 6, 2005 2:52 PM:

daveg,

i didn't address illegals or immigrants in jail because that wasn't whom i was referring to with my general support - i was referring to the industrious, legal immigrants. they are the foundation of the american dream, imho.

Mik said at April 6, 2005 3:08 PM:

An informative discussion of March Employment Report by (liberal) economist:


http://angrybear.blogspot.com/2005/04/march-employment-report.html


It seems that we have a couple of facts:

1. US Job machine is broken, it happened under GWBush, I don't know if his policies caused it to
brake. He definetly haven't done anything to fix it: trade is disaster, budget deficits are disaster, import
of people is disaster.

2. Given that job situation is pretty bleak, why OpenBorderUberAlles supporters like Jim like to bring even more people
to take a few available jobs from natives? What is it about OpenBorders that makes them so cold and callous toward their own countryman?

birch barlow said at April 6, 2005 3:36 PM:

"but it seems that hispanics are better than black people"

This is a lame one--saying something is OK because something else is more problematic is a typical bad argument. It's like saying there's nothing wrong with drinking a half liter of gin, because smoking a line dose of PCP is even more harmful to one's health.

Dumb Canuck said at April 6, 2005 5:58 PM:


"know my grandfather had ziltch education but was quite intelligent"

Anecdotal evidence is generally worthless, this is especially so when this evidence is from such a different time period. In the past, many with high IQ’s didn’t receive a great deal of education. Many CEO’s didn’t even go to college. This is extremely rare today. 99%+ of those with an IQ over 115 get a high school degree or equivalent. Most go on to college. Less than 50% of those with an IQ under 85 get a high school education or equivalent.

As for immigrant groups of the past, they were administered IQ tests that were to focused on verbal skills and common knowledge. Obviously an immigrant from Poland wouldn't know how to read very well nor know common American knowledge.

Bob Badour said at April 6, 2005 9:10 PM:

Jim,

"besides, i'd rather have manufacturing jobs in this country for new immigrants than importing the same goods from elsewhere."

Given that the costs and expectations for education, medical treatement etc. are orders of magnitude lower elsewhere, I would prefer to import on the basis of marginal advantage than to incur high local costs mostly to benefit a few employers.

Randall Parker said at April 6, 2005 9:40 PM:

The secret to success in manufacturing is not cheap labor. The secret to success is great design and manufacturing engineering.

My guess is that increasing the fraction of the population that is less bright drains the labor of bright people away from science and engineering and pulls them into medical care, legal services (prosecutors and defense attorneys), and other jobs that require brains to manage or take care of less bright people.

c matt said at April 7, 2005 8:15 AM:

states audit employers whose employee records (mis-matched names and SSNs, for example) suggest illegals, and bill the cost of those illegals (including state and local education costs) back to the employers. You'd see the employment of illegals drop like a rock, and the taxpayers would be really happy.

Until the taxpayers turn into consumers, and the employers raise the prices to cover the costs billed to them by the government - happy taxpayer, unhappy consumer. I love this "let's build robots" scenario - do you have any clue how much a "robot" that could do housekeeping in a major hotel would cost to (1) develop, (2) adapt to hotel infrastructure, and (3) maintain and operate? You have been watching too many Jetson's episodes. And what employer would fork out that kind of money when cheap labor is around? And, assuming these robots did exist, what good would that do for a native worker - an employer would pass up a native worker just as quickly, if not more quickly, than a cheaper immigrant one for that same robot.

As for IQ tests in general, intelligence is a very difficult thing to measure accurately. I don't doubt that intelligence varies (obviously), but many IQ tests really test for knowledge (eg, acquired information), not intelligence. They are really more a measure of what one has been exposed to or recalls rather than pure intelligence.

c matt said at April 7, 2005 8:25 AM:

I don't think there was any immigrant group gap comparable to the East Asian/Hispanic or South Asian/Hispanic gap in the late 19th or early 20th century.


A Rice University professor did an interesting study on the education gap btwn Asians and other iimigrant groups. The type of immigrant from Asia was more likely to have a higher level of education, and therefore have a better shot from the start. Asians, for example, had an extremely high number of immigrants with nursing degrees. Part of this can seem to be explained through geography - the immigration cost to get form Asia to the US is much higher than say, from Mexico, therefore a higher percentage of Asian immigrants will have to have better means (either through eduation or savings).

c matt said at April 7, 2005 8:30 AM:

The secret to success in manufacturing is making a product that commands a higher price than it costs to manufacture and distribute to the purchaser. Great design and manufacturing engineering undoubtedly contributes, but the best engineered and designed buggy whips may have a tough time in the 21st century.

birch barlow said at April 7, 2005 8:34 AM:

Until the taxpayers turn into consumers, and the employers raise the prices to cover the costs billed to them by the government - happy taxpayer, unhappy consumer. I love this "let's build robots" scenario - do you have any clue how much a "robot" that could do housekeeping in a major hotel would cost to (1) develop, (2) adapt to hotel infrastructure, and (3) maintain and operate? You have been watching too many Jetson's episodes.

I think Randall is thinking more along the lines of mechanizing things like agricultural labor, and allowing wages to rise for unskilled jobs that cannot be practically done by robots (at least not currently). Besides, hotel rooms were cleaned 20 and 30 years ago when we had far less low-skill immigrant labor. There is no "need" for mass low-skill immigration, which brings with it poverty, blighted neighborhoods, closed emergency rooms, higher taxes (or higher deficits--see Caliornia, for ex.), bad schools, and crime.

As for IQ tests in general, intelligence is a very difficult thing to measure accurately. I don't doubt that intelligence varies (obviously), but many IQ tests really test for knowledge (eg, acquired information), not intelligence. They are really more a measure of what one has been exposed to or recalls rather than pure intelligence.

IQ is a useful predictor for a lot of things--though that is somewhat beside the point. The fact is that Hispanic immigrants, and particularly Mexican immigrants, tend to have low incomes and low levels of education right up through the second, third, and greater generations. The low incomes and low levels of education of second-and-greater generation Hispanic immigrants brings with it the same problems we already have with poor, uneducated whites and blacks.

crush41 said at April 7, 2005 9:55 AM:

And what employer would fork out that kind of money when cheap labor is around?
----------

You just made Randall's point for him. While nations like Japan are robotizing, US firms are trying to find perpetually cheap labor. At some point in time, the investments into robotics are going to make production cheaper for the Japanese than for American companies. When that threshold is reached, the US will be so far behind in terms of technological investment that it will no longer be competitive in the global economy or even at home without enormous trade barriers.

----------
The type of immigrant from Asia was more likely to have a higher level of education, and therefore have a better shot from the start.
----------

Good. Why would we not want encourage an increase in these immigrants and discourage other less-educated/affluent immigrants who bring nothing to the table?

John S Bolton said at April 7, 2005 7:00 PM:

A point that gets obfuscated in the comparisons to immigration cohorts of the past is that a country's competitive viability can be like a bridge; saying that each additional person on the bridge was accomodated without collapse does not tell us that the next will not put us over the catastrophic threshold. The structural elements are already ripping apart with a world shaking roar; 9 11 was one of those resounding events, so is the mass closure of hospitals; so were the explosions of tropical diseases where generations of progress got sacrificed needlessly, and, more silently, the downfall of the California public schools, from the top to the bottom 10% of state's performance in forty years, under the relentless onslaught of degradation of population quality. If these events are not sabotaging in their effects, what would be? Cheap labor is low income, and low income populations are on net public subsidy in the alternative welfare society of today, and this is unspeakably vicious aggression on the net taxpayer, for the officials to import such and so many.Even If the immigrants of 100 years ago did something similar, which is not exactly true, it is still antimoral to say that the sufferance of one evil justifies the increase of another. The forcing of job sharing on our people by means of aggression by foreigners flooding in on net public subsidy, and the averaging down towards third world levels of unemployment or lower workforce participation, is clearly wrong. That net public subsidy is the faciltating influence, can be shown by considering whether immigration levels would not be much lower, if free day care in the public schools, free medical treatments, disability payments and other such subsidies were not available to foreigners here.

Randall Parker said at April 7, 2005 9:34 PM:

If we have to compete in manufacturing with cheap labor then we are never going to be able to compete. India, China, and even Mexico have much lower wages than the US minimum wage. We need to compete using rapid advancement of our technology.

Invisible Scientist said at April 8, 2005 6:01 AM:

One issue is that outsourcing has taken away many of the high paying jobs
from American workers. Many high paying jobs have been outsourced to India, China
and many other countries where salaries are less than 20 % of even those Americans with
PhD degrees.

This is probably the main reason most of the recently created jobs are
low paying service jobs, which explains why Hispanics were the ones who took many
of the newly created jobs.

Jim said at April 8, 2005 10:21 AM:

yes, u.s. min wage is much greater than chinese, etc wages. but to make innovative ideas work in the u.s., there must be somewhat cheap labor to implement/manufacture whatever is the product of this innovation.

Invisible Scientist said at April 8, 2005 11:03 AM:

Jim wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------------
"yes, u.s. min wage is much greater than chinese, etc wages. but to make innovative ideas work in the u.s., there must be somewhat cheap labor to implement/manufacture whatever is the product of this innovation."
------------------------------------------------------------

But Japan apparently did not buy this argument: they are very strict about restricting immigration,
and instead of importing cheap labor, they are clanishly robotizing their country.

Randall Parker said at April 8, 2005 11:12 AM:

Jim,

If a company needs really really cheap labor it can set up factories abroad and many companies do that. Good designs are never going to go unused just because local manufacturing labor is expensive.

However, some companies have used automation to drive their labor needs so low that they have shifted their factories back into the United States.

Jim said at April 8, 2005 3:37 PM:

yeah, japan has a great economy. it's really done great in the last couple decades. with even better prospects for the future as their inverted pyramid of population deals with ever-increasing ratio of old folks. imploding populations do wonders for the real-estate market too when japanese can't get what they paid for their houses 16 years ago.

Randall,

many times it's quite helpful to be able to actually visit your suppliers to really understand what they're doing. this is where many innovations are born that often relate to process changes married with better designs and materials. after the factories go overseas, what about u.s. exports? there is also the constant concern about intellectual property being stolen overseas and not having proper court system.

automation is definitely happening big time, especially as u.s. companies realize outsourcing has its own set of problems. i'd guess (no numbers, never even seen numbers to recall from) more low-cost jobs are lost to robots than immigrants or foreign factories.

Bob Badour said at April 9, 2005 11:39 AM:

"i'd guess (no numbers, never even seen numbers to recall from) more low-cost jobs are lost to robots than immigrants or foreign factories."

All the more reason to stop importing unskilled workers with few prospects for achievement.

Proborders said at April 12, 2005 8:21 AM:

Jim, about a third of all immigrants in the USA in the year 2000 were from Mexico even though Mexico has about 2% of the world's population. In the year 2000 there were more immigrants from Mexico in the USA than immigrants from Europe in the USA even though Europe has several times the population of Europe.

Slightly under half of all immigrants in the USA in the year 2000 were from Spanish-speaking countries even though Spanish-speaking countries have less than 1/6th of the world's population.

Jim and c matt, would you favor reducing immigration from Latin America and increasing immigration from Europe if additional labor is required in the USA? Do you or would you prefer Mexican immigrants over European immigrants? If so, why?

Jim, perhaps most Americans would prefer non-black Spanish-speaking immigrants over black immigrants. However, there are alternatives to Spanish-speaking immigrants and black immigrants. China and India both have more than one billion people. Europe has several times the population of Mexico (although there are Spanish-speaking people and black people in Europe).

Japan's economy hasn't expanded to the extent that the Chinese (PRC) economy has expanded since 1989. How many immigrants has China accepted since 1989? Probably very few.

Japan's economy in the last 15 to 16 years or so has not comparatively performed as well as it did during the 1980s due largely to competition from other Asian countries and competition from non-Japanese Asian companies in my opinion. A company buying a large ship might buy a South Korean built ship rather than a Japanese built ship. Instead of buying a Sony product people might buy a Samsung product instead. In the 1980s I think that a larger percentage of products produced by Japanese companies were made in Japan than in the year 2004. Japanese companies now do substantial manufacturing in China.

Japan has probably taken in more immigrants and guest workers during the 1990s and from 2000-2004 than during the 1980s.

Jim said at April 13, 2005 8:35 AM:

regarding mexican immigration vs. european has two big obvious points: 1)u.s. doesn't share an enormous border with any european countries 2)european standards of living have increased much since the times of heavy european immigration thus reducing the driving force for immigration. latin america still has a huge driving force.

i don't prefer any origin of worker over another, and in my comments i was trying make the opposite argument - that people shouldn't discriminate against the mexican immigrants because of mean country iq's. i want people that are very highly-skilled and/or very industrious and i think immigrants often bring better value (defined as productivity/wages) than natives. furthermore, i think that is much of the american dream, hard-working immigrants coming to this country to make a better future for their kids and join the great melting pot.

japan has exceptionally restrictive (racist?) rules on becoming a japanese citizen. i think part of their problem is a lack of innovative people that may in part be due to having such a closed society. this is why their economy can't compete with the u.s. lately.

i'm in favor of identifying the optimum rate of needed immigration to set limits and enforcing those limits, but i have no idea how to do that... i do have the clue that near zero like japan doesn't work too well

Bob Badour said at April 14, 2005 3:47 PM:

Jim,

If Mexican immigrants were productive, people would pay them more money. As Randall has mentioned previously, the extraordinary low wages they accept proves they produce little of value.

Proborders said at April 17, 2005 11:40 AM:

Jim, thank you for answering.

It could be said that the US is favoring immigration from Mexico over immigration from other countries due to the largely unguarded border with Mexico and insufficient measures to prevent illegal aliens (the largest group of whom are Mexican) from attaining employment here in the USA.

Immigrants in the US are disproportionately Mexican, given Mexico’s share of the non-USA world population. In my opinion it is not unfair to reduce immigration from Mexico such that about 10 percent of new immigrants would be from Mexico, as Mexico has less than 3 percent of the world’s population excluding the USA’s population.

I don’t think that China or South Korea has taken in many immigrants in the last 20 to 30 years. China and South Korea are both economically more competitive relative to Japan currently than in 1975 overall in my opinion. Immigration does not seem to be a good reason for explaining why China and South Korea are now more economically competitive relative to Japan now than 30 years ago.

Jim, do you think that Hispanics who came to the USA since 1975 should be eligible for affirmative action preferences such that lesser qualified Hispanic applicants receive preferences in admissions to colleges and universities over whites with better qualifications?

Shanon said at April 17, 2005 2:02 PM:

I agree fully with the idea of feeling paralyzed while something out of sync with our society is occurring. I have been reviewing emigration options, as well, for the future. I am frightened that I will not be able to find a job, or be forced to speak another language in order to keep my job. I have heard that New Zealand is a beautiful area.

Giovanni said at August 5, 2005 10:06 AM:

I totally disagree with all of you, how could you discriminate inmigrants that way.. weren't inmigrants the ones who set the foundations of America? I particulary want to encourage all of you to identify the differences between Hispanics and how the contribute to a greater America, how about Colombians taken over the land in Florida......Colombians are well educated and economically sabby when doing business...... What about the natural market? The Americas will eventually unite agains other economic blocks.

Caryn said at November 4, 2009 4:24 PM:

Giovanni, they aren't "immigrants," they are 'illegals'. Now pay attention.


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