I first saw this video (click on it to see my comments) on Chris Blattman’s site, then I saw it on Cafe Hayek, and now I see it on Econlog. Since the video is terrible, and everybody who’s linked to it seems to like it (it’s not fulfilling its unStraussian purpose), it is my job to refute its various unconvincing and ridiculous claims.
1. Ever wonder why 93% of Americans don’t support open borders?
2. Yes, America is great. It should also be hell for illegals. What’s inconsistent about that proposition? I support Rand Paul’s underground electric fence. That should be a powerful enough deterrent. The illegals can make it here (relative to their country of origin, not relative to the average American). I and my allies don’t want them to. I want them out.
3. What’s the point of this story? It’s unfunny and irrelevant.
4. Nobody serious believes the economy’s only a fixed size, and can’t handle increased population. And consumption and job creation hurt the economy, not help it. Work is a burden, and immigrant consumption takes away from natives’ consumption. Especially in matters of housing.
5. He admits that immigrants are, on average, on net, moochers.
6. Gerben doesn’t explain how the 3 billion dollar benefit to the U.S. economy estimate is computed. Since there are a lot of immigrants in the U.S., and the U.S. economy is ~$19 trillion a $3 billion gain is basically margin of error- miniscule. Less than one percent of immigrants’ earnings.
7. Again, job creation and consumption are not good things. The demand side of the economy is ultimately determined by the Fed, not immigrants. The supply side might be influenced by immigration on the high and low ends, but that comes largely from their labor, not their consumption.
8. Most Mexicans in the U.S. aren’t illegal. The plan in the state legislatures was never to kick most of the Mexican population out.
Feel the economic decimation!
June 2011 was when Alabama’s immigration law was passed. So where’s the effect on employment? Didn’t Gerben say most illegals didn’t work on the farm?
Obviously, agricultural employment went down relative to counterfactual, but why shouldn’t it have? If agricultural employment was the be-all and end-all of everything, Mali would be paradise. Agriculture is an insignificant part of Alabama’s economy.
The WaPo article about the law’s “unexpected consequences” only focuses on shelter and agricultural work. No mention of any negative impact on the state’s native population (other than agricultural employers) is made. Rather, the contrary.
10. [Facepalm.] The Alabama law could not have had any impact on the price of watermelons. What, Alabama is a major supplier of watermelons these days? No! And Alabama doesn’t have any tariffs on agricultural produce, last time I heard.
11. The Alabama law was gutted by judges, not by anything wrong with it.
12. “Hyperbole doesn’t help” -I call hypocrisy.
13. Nobody denies the “benefits to the migrant”.
14. We don’t have a lot of cross-border mobility of anything.
15. “Corruption in semi-autocratic Africa” is not news. Lack of it is. And Meles Zenawi was one of the best leaders Ethiopia has had in decades. Under him, the country went from 0% per capita growth to 7% per capita growth.
16. There is something inherently unproductive about both Guatemalans and Guatemala. That’s why second-generation Guatemalans in the U.S. are generally thoroughly unimpressive. There is something inherently unproductive in both Puerto Rico and Puerto Ricans. That’s why Puerto Ricans in the continental U.S. are so thoroughly unimpressive, unless, as is common, they are mixed with Whites. Unlike 1960s China, where there was nothing inherently unproductive about the Chinese, but a lot inherently unproductive about China.
17. Yes, coming to America is easy. So is ruining it via unrestricted immigration. The U.S. is not Oman, the UAE, or Qatar.
18. Yes, immigration to the U.S. at present isn’t easy. What’s wrong with that?
19. There is a legitimate point here about tax payment.
20. If we so desperately need agricultural jobs, then why is the unemployment rate in Fresno so high? Too many jobs, amirite? Of course, the lowest unemployment rates in the country are in the rural Great Plains, but no one’s talking about them being taken over by illegals.
21. Yes, the illegals are invaders. That’s because the progressives and Reaganites might legalize them, so that they can take over the country so that all of it looks like Puerto Rico or New Mexico.
22. No; the long-term impact of immigration is much more significant than that of the Great Recession, especially on the U.S. Supreme Court via control of the Presidency. A lot of those Syrian, Jewish, and White Gentile of European origin bankers could be replaced by Indian, Chinese, and more Syrian immigrant ones. That changes nothing. And a lot of the housing fraud came from scamming gullible Mexican immigrants. Imprisoning the (at least partially immigrant) banksters does not hurt kicking out the illegals they scammed. BTW, the crash of 2008 was caused in large part by insufficient Fed accommodation, not fraud alone. And, BTW, the Treasury gained money from the bailout.
23. Kicking out the visa overstayers does not hurt building a wall.
24. Nobody’s going home to famine and staying here on a visa.
25. See, border patrol is ineffective. Therefore, it needs to be taken over by the military, turned a bit more deadly, and done with a wall.
26. High-skilled immigrants tend to be Berniebros and media moguls. Not too good an idea on an excessive scale. But the costs and benefits should be considered.
27. The argument for building a wall around the country is about subversion from the inside via mass legalization.
28. Is Gerben saying that the U.S. should somehow take on the responsibility of educating the entire world? How about no? The rest of the world can deal with its problems itself. Also, with his “vagina” talk, Gerben is showing the perversity of birthright citizenship. Yes, countries take responsibility for their legal residents. Not their non-residents.
29. There’s no good reason for educating illegals. And education doesn’t much help the naturally low-IQ.
30. “No defensible moral reason” -they didn’t build this country. They have no relation to us. The anecdote of the Guatemalan man made me want to improve border security so such people can stay in Guatemala to improve their country and not die in the desert. I didn’t like this presentation at all. Trump 2016!