Dan Mitchell, Ron Paul, and Milton Friedman on Immigration Debate (includes editorial cartoon)

I like Milton Friedman’s comments on this issue of immigration   and Ron Paul and Dan Mitchell do well on the issue too.

A reader from overseas wonders about my views on immigration, particularly amnesty.

I confess that this is one of those issues where I’m conflicted.

On the general topic of immigration, I think the United States has benefited in the past – and can benefit in the future – from newcomers. And I express that position in this interview for Fox Business News.

But the real issue, which isn’t addressed in the interview, is magnitude. I assume almost nobody wants zero immigration. On the other hand, I also assume that very few people favor totally open borders.

So where do we draw the line? I think we should welcome lots of immigration, particularly people with skills, education, and money. This is the approach that is used to varying degrees by nations such as Australia, Canada, and Switzerland, and I wrote favorably about a similar proposal by Congressman Jared Polis, a Democrat from Colorado.

And I think substantial numbers of low-skilled people who want to work also should be welcome, but I don’t think everybody in the world who wants to come to America should have that right. I haven’t met more than a tiny handful of folks who disagree with Walter Williams’ assertion that, “not…everyone on the planet had a right to live in the U.S.”

Particularly since politicians have redistribution systems that can lure people into a life of dependency. Which is presumably why Milton Friedman warned, to the dismay of some other libertarians, “You cannot simultaneously have free immigration and a welfare state.”

Even the Wall Street Journal, which is a leading voice for both increased immigration and amnesty for existing illegals, also is concerned that a growing welfare state could attract immigrants for the wrong reasons.

Speaking of amnesty, I suppose I should answer the question of how I would deal with people who are in the country illegally? And my response probably depends whether I answer with my heart or my head.

My heart tells me to give these people the benefit of the doubt. Every illegal I’ve met seems to be a good person. And I know if I lived someplace like Mexico, Somalia, or Honduras, I almost certainly would want to improve my family’s position by getting to America, legally or illegally.

On the other hand, I believe in the rule of law and I’m a bit uncomfortable rewarding those who jumped the line at the expense of those who followed the rules.

And to be perfectly honest, I also worry about the political implications of any policy that increases the number of people who – on net – will vote for redistribution. I could do without the partisan implications, but this Chuck Asay cartoon captures my concerns.

Immigration Cartoon

I also think that people respond to incentives. Another round of amnesty almost surely will encourage further illegal immigration. Putting myself in the position of a poor person in the developing world, I would logically conclude that it would just be a matter of time, so I would sneak across the border in order to take advantage of that future amnesty.

That doesn’t strike me as a good approach. Far better to figure out how to genuinely reform the system.

By the way, a senior staffer on Capitol Hill floated to me the idea of a new status that enables illegals to stay in the country, but bars them from citizenship unless they get in line and follow the rules. I’m definitely not familiar with the fault lines on these issues, but perhaps that could be a good compromise.

And it goes without saying that I want the strictest possible limits on access to welfare programs and other government handouts for immigrants, regardless of their status.

So, like everybody else, I want border security and some form of legalization as part of a new system that brings people to America for the right reason. See, I’m the epitome of reasonableness.

P.S. If you want to enjoy some immigration-related humor, we have a video about Americans migrating to Peru and a story about American leftists escaping to Canada.

P.P.S. On the issue of birthright citizenship, I’ve shared some interesting analysis from Will Wilkinson and George Will.

Two very wise men below:

View Image

Milton Friedman – Illegal Immigration – PT 1

(1 of 2) Professor Friedman looks at the dynamics of illegal immigration. See part two: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NfU9Fqah-f4 http://Libertypen.com

_______________________________________

Back in 1980 I read the book “Free to Choose” by Milton and Rose Friedman. I noticed that Milton made it clear both in the book and in the film series of the same name that immigration was good for America in the past. However, since the USA changed to a welfare state, we could no longer have a tremendous amount of legal immigration because it was overload the welfare state!!!!

Milton Friedman in a lecture at Stanford asserted:

 “I’ve always been amused by a kind of a paradox. Suppose you go around and ask people: ‘The United States before 1914, as you know, had completely free immigration. Anybody could get in a boat and come to these shores and if landed at Ellis Island he was an immigrant. Was that a good thing or a bad thing?”

You will find that hardly a soul who will say that it was a bad thing. Almost everybody will say it was a good thing. ‘But what about today? Do you think we should have free immigration?’ ‘Oh, no,’ they’ll say, ‘We couldn’t possibly have free immigration today. Why, that would flood us with immigrants from India, and God knows where. We’d be driven down to a bare subsistence level.’

What’s the difference? How can people be so inconsistent? Why is it that free immigration was a good thing before 1914 and free immigration is a bad thing today? Well, there is a sense in which that answer is right. There’s a sense in which free immigration, in the same sense as we had it before 1914 is not possible today. Why not?

Because it is one thing to have free immigration to jobs. It is another thing to have free immigration to welfare. And you cannot have both. If you have a welfare state, if you have a state in which every resident is promises a certain minimal level of income, or a minimum level of subsistence, regardless of whether he works or not, produces it or not. Then it really is an impossible thing.

(For a more full discussion check this out)

I was perplexed at the time that Friedman’s ideology had to take a backseat to the real world that liberals had taken over!!! That is exactly the case here.

Milton Friedman – Illegal Immigration – PT 2

(2 of 2) Professor Friedman fields a question on the dynamics of illegal immigration. http://LibertyPen.com

According to Wikipedia here are Ron Paul’s views on Borders and immigration:

Paul considers it a “boondoggle” for the U.S. to spend much money policing other countries’ borders (such as the IraqSyria border) while leaving its own borders porous and unpatrolled;[32] he argues the U.S.–Mexico border can be crossed by anyone, including potential terrorists.[52] During the Cold War, he supported Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative,[53] intended to replace the “strategic offense” doctrine of mutual assured destruction with strategic defense.

Paul believes illegal aliens take a toll on welfare and Social Security and would end such benefits, concerned that uncontrolled immigration makes the U.S. a magnet for illegal aliens, increases welfare payments, and exacerbates the strain on an already highly unbalanced federal budget.[54]

Paul believes that illegal immigrants should not be given an “unfair advantage” under law.[55] He has advocated for a “coherent immigration policy”, and has spoken strongly against amnesty for illegal aliens because he believes it undermines the rule of law, grants pardons to lawbreakers,[56] and subsidizes more illegal immigration.[57] Paul voted for the Secure Fence Act of 2006, authorizing an additional 700 miles (1100 kilometers) of double-layered fencing between the U.S. and Mexico mainly because he wanted enforcement of the law and opposed amnesty, not because he supported the construction of a border fence.[58]

Paul believes that mandated hospital emergency treatment for illegal aliens should be ceased and that assistance from charities should instead be sought because there should be no federal mandates on providing health care for illegal aliens.[58]

Paul also believes children born in the U.S. to illegal aliens should not be granted automatic birthright citizenship.[59] He has called for a new Constitutional amendment to revise fourteenth amendment principles and “end automatic birthright citizenship”,[60] and believes that welfare issues are directly tied to the illegal immigration problem.[61]

Related posts:

Dan Mitchell on Texas v. California (includes editorial cartoon)

We should lower federal taxes because jobs are going to states like Texas that have low taxes. What Can We Learn by Comparing the Employment Situation in Texas vs. California? April 3, 2013 by Dan Mitchell One of the great things about federalism, above and beyond the fact that it both constrains the power of governments […]

Cartoons from Dan Mitchell’s blog on Obamacare

Third-Party Payer is the Biggest Economic Problem With America’s Health Care System Published on Jul 10, 2012 This mini-documentary from the Center for Freedom and Prosperity Foundation explains that “third-party payer” is the main problem with America’s health care system. This is why undoing Obamacare, while desirable, is just a small first step if we […]

Obamacare cartoons from Dan Mitchell’s blog

I have put up lots of cartoons from Dan Mitchell’s blog before and they have got lots of hits before. Many of them have dealt with the economy, eternal unemployment benefits, socialism,  Greece,  welfare state or on gun control. The funniest cartoon is the one with “Nurse Sebelius” stuffing the huge capsule down the kid’s throat!!! Obamacare […]

Editorial cartoon from Dan Mitchell’s blog on California’s sorry state of affairs

I have put up lots of cartoons from Dan Mitchell’s blog before and they have got lots of hits before. Many of them have dealt with the sequester, economy, eternal unemployment benefits, socialism,  minimum wage laws, tax increases, social security, high taxes in California, Obamacare,  Greece,  welfare state or on gun control. President Obama’s favorite state must be California because […]

Dan Mitchell of the Cato Institute:HUD has to go!!!! (includes political cartoon)

You want a suggestion on how to cut the government then start at HUD. I would prefer to eliminate all of it. Here are Dan Mitchell’s thoughts below: Sequestration’s Impact on HUD: Just 358 More Days and Mission Accomplished March 12, 2013 by Dan Mitchell As part of my “Question of the Week” series, I had […]

Dan Mitchell: Cartoonists React to the Senate Democratic Budget

I read that President Obama in his meetings with the Republicans would not even say that a balanced budget was a goal. According to the budget presented by the Democratic Senate he is in agreement with their approach. Cartoonists have taken the opportunity to poke fun at that below. I  have put up lots of cartoons […]

Cartoons from Dan Mitchell’s blog that demonstrate what Obama is doing to our economy Part 6

  I have put up lots of cartoons from Dan Mitchell’s blog before and they have got lots of hits before. Many of them have dealt with the sequester, economy, eternal unemployment benefits, socialism,  minimum wage laws, tax increases, social security, high taxes in California, Obamacare,  Greece,  welfare state or on gun control. Here is another one. This Cartoon Does […]

Cartoons from Dan Mitchell’s blog that demonstrate what Obama is doing to our economy Part 3.3 (Unemployment laws)

I have put up lots of cartoons from Dan Mitchell’s blog before and they have got lots of hits before. Many of them have dealt with the economy, eternal unemployment benefits, socialism,  Greece,  welfare state or on gun control. The Perverse Unintended Consequences of Anti-Discrimination Laws February 23, 2013 by Dan Mitchell I recently wrote about the pinheads […]

Another funny gun poster from Dan Mitchell’s blog

  I have taken the time to write President Obama on this issue of gun control several times and have even got a letter back from the White House on it. Plus a friend of mine by the name of Charlie Collins has even put forth bills in the Arkansas State House of Representatives concerning […]

Another funny sequester cartoon from Dan Mitchell’s blog

I have put up lots of cartoons from Dan Mitchell’s blog before and they have got lots of hits before. Many of them have dealt with the economy, eternal unemployment benefits, socialism,  Greece,  welfare state or on gun control. As Humorously Explained by Henry Payne, the World Amazingly Didn’t End When Uncle Sam Got Put on a […]

Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: