Towards A Good Samaritan World

Thursday, December 21, 2006

In an article entitled "Illegal Immigration: A Rich Americans' Game", From Harrup writes:

Who doesn't suffer from illegal immigration? For starters, the people who write about it. I speak of the journalism profession, which has the habit of covering the issue by anecdotes. Reporters thrive on sympathetic stories about illegal immigrants who work hard and go to church.

But, were a busload of illegals from Australia to turn up at their newspaper and offer reportage at 10 percent below the going rate, the writers would call the authorities so fast that your head would spin. And the publisher's argument that thanks to the cheap Australians, he's able to trim a few cents off the newsstand price would make no impression.

The opposition to illegal immigration has a cynical worldview. They see mankind as engaged in a Darwinian struggle, and they're afraid of losing. From this point of view, good will towards one's fellow men is rooting for the other team.


  • It's also a false choice. Being pro-liberalized immigration doesn't mean being pro-illegal immigration. In some ways it's the opposite: if we liberalized the rules, there'd be no (legitimate) reason to immigrate illegally, thereby mostly eliminating it.

    Since "illegals" have to fear the authorities, of course, they have no reason to follow some rules (paying taxes, for example) and they have no way of making their employers follow rules (or treat them fairly in general). Thus, the common worker loses when "competing" with those whose wage demands are artificially depressed. The employer is the one who "wins" via what amounts to government subsidized extortion. Liberalization places immigrants on an equal stance, actually helping working class wages.

    So yes, illegal immigration is a rich American's game, but the solution isn't to make immigration harder or to complicate the lives of those already in the country illegally. Quite the opposite.

    I'm sure this is no new analysis to anyone who has been reading Lance's blog for any length of time, but I thought it bore mentioning again.

    By Blogger Nato, at 11:25 AM  

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