Fear-Mongering Never Trumps Facts

From co-blogger Santiago J. Valenzuela

A steady dose of how much immigrants are "costing society" is fed to us non stop via the internet and the evening news, under the assumption that immigrants (being poor and paying few taxes) are a burden that society graciously lifts up through welfare.

That assumption is false in two ways.  First, here is an economist's take on the issue:

The U.S. economy is dynamic, shedding and creating hundreds of thousands of jobs every month. Businesses are in a continuous state of flux. The most accurate way to gauge the net impact of immigration on such an economy is to analyze the effects dynamically over time. Data show that, on net, immigrants expand the U.S. economy’s productive capacity, stimulate investment, and promote specialization that in the long run boosts productivity. Consistent with previous research, there is no evidence that these effects take place at the expense of jobs for workers born in the United States.

Second, anyone taking advantage of America’s welfare system (whether citizen or not), is a burden on taxpayers and “costing society.”  This is not a problem with immigration, but a problem with the welfare state. 

Opening up immigration (and getting rid of America’s welfare state) is not only the right thing to do morally, it’s the right thing to do economically.

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