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Dutchess_III's avatar

What do you think of this article that suggests illegal immigrants actually boost the economy?

Asked by Dutchess_III (36028points) August 17th, 2014


Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

34 Answers

Imadethisupwithnoforethought's avatar

I think it has been obvious to thinking people for a long time that the Mexicans coming in are good for the economy.

Calling them illegal immigrants is a psychological trick rich people use on white trash.

I am an Irish American. My people were once scum. But once the civil war broke out, those with money told my people, at least in the south, that we should fight with them because we were better than someone.

Now you got Bill O’Reilly, an Irishman, telling people that Mexicans are illegal immigrants. Any thinking person says, wow, we should make them full citizens so capitalism will work and the strong among these new arrivals will have the chance to boost us all.

And those Americans, who are perhaps not that successful, want to talk about illegals, as if they are responsible for their lack of success. It makes them feel like they have accomplished something, being born here. It makes them feel so much better to have someone to look down on.

elbanditoroso's avatar

@Imadethisupwithnoforethought pretty much said what I was going to say,

Here in Georgia, we have unpicked crops because the migrants can’t get into the US to pick. They want to but the stupid immigration laws are closing them out. I remember that the loss of income in this state alone was over 2 billion dollars last year, in lost sales. This year’s numbers are not, of course, collected.

Theis immigration fight is nothing more than political populistic crap for the right wing to scare people. They do that so well.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Hey @Imadethisupwithnoforethought! Good to see you! Good post.

cheebdragon's avatar

I think opinions on illegal immigration are significantly different depending on where you live. If immigrants aren’t making it to Georgia to pick crops, it’s only because they don’t want to go to Georgia, they have all made it to California just fine.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, then they’re helping the economy in California.

@elbanditoroso have you had migrants to pick crops in the past?

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

There is a substantial and growing population here in Tennessee. I have mixed feelings about it but at the end of the day they are people who are willing to work and work hard. I have no problem with that. Very few Americans are willing or even able to do much of the work they are doing. There really is not any competition in the workforce…yet. There are a minority gaming the system and the bulk are working under false pretenses. I have a problem with that but that’s completely the fault of uncle Sam for refusing to enact reasonable immigration reform. It likely is a gain for the economy in some aspects and a drain on others. I’d say it’s probably a small net gain when it’s all said and done.

gondwanalon's avatar

People who break laws by Illegally entering and or staying in the USA are criminals. That is not spin. If those criminals are willing to work hard and pay taxes then they are a boost to the economy. If they don’t work then they are a drain. Just how many work and don’t work is the question.

stanleybmanly's avatar

There is no question that immigrants now dominate any activity based on physical labor in my neck of the woods. Any activity or trade not requiring government licensing for the individuals involved is performed by people for the most part not born in this country. And it makes for some rather peculiar situations. It’s an open secret that the best food from the snootiest restaurants in the city is prepared by Hispanic cooks back in the kitchens beyond public view. The finest Italian food, Exquisite French cuisine, makes no difference. Our house has been undergoing lots of renovations. The deck has been rebuilt, several windows have been replaced, and the the exterior was repainted last month. Even the iron gate has been replaced. Several contractors have been involved in the process, from the replacement of panels in the garage door to new locks for the front gate. Regardless of the ethnicity of the owners of these businesses, not one white person or African American or person of ethnicity other than Hispanic has touched this house in the process. Ten years or so ago, I was sitting in a cafe, having breakfast and watching through the window as the city’s water dept proceeded in digging up the street outside. There were four beefy white guys from the water dept enjoying breakfast at the table beside ours, while outside the brown laborers of the subcontractors toiled in the holes. Your drain stopped up? Need a mover, or a gardener? It doesn’t matter who answers the phone when you call, or who you make the deal with at the shop. It’s the Hispanic guy who shows up and does the work.

Anyway, what’s my point? It’s simply this. The argument that illegal immigrants are good for the economy, is the same as the argument that American consumers benefit from factory jobs being relocated to China. Illegal immigration is tolerated and our borders remain porous for the simple reason that the influx of desperately poor people has the salutory effect ( in the eyes of the chamber of commerce) of depressing wages.

johnpowell's avatar

@gondwanalon :: How many people that aren’t documented do you think walk in to get food stamps? Here is a fucking hint. About the same number that walk up to cops and tell them that they are really high.

Edit: I have applied for foodstamps and my ID was checked… They even took my ID to the Xerox machine.

cheebdragon's avatar

@johnpowell How many undocumented workers have children? The answer to that question would probably give you a fairly good estimate for the number of undocumented workers applying for assistance.

@Dutchess_III California’s economy has been shitty for several years. There are plenty of benefits from immigration, but in states with the highest amount of illegal immigrants the cost is a little overwhelming.

elbanditoroso's avatar

@Dutchess_III – oh, yes, for decades, up until a couple of years ago when the immigration rules were tightened.

zenvelo's avatar

The benefits to the economy from undocumented immigrants is well established and not at all a point of disagreement amongst economists and business people. They pay state and federal taxes and pay into Social Security and Medicare without hope of ever getting back on the investment.

The Alabama farm labor shortage is a direct result of onerous laws passed by Alabama.

Kropotkin's avatar

The attention that this supposed issue gets is a divisive distraction.

While the elites rob everyone blind, they get to point at poor Mexicans crossing the border to pick fruit as the source of some of your problems.

It’s beyond absurd.

LuckyGuy's avatar

The article only mention the money they pay into social security without hope of collecting. With employer contribution let’s call it 15% of annual income – and let’s call that about $10000. So the article mentions $1500 going uncollected – if they are declared either legally or usinga fake social security card.
But, it ignores the other side of the coin: the expenses. If one woman has a child, who pays for the medical expenses she cannot afford? The US taxpayers. and that expense is way more than $1500. $15,000, if the child is healthy? Who pays for emergency hospital visits? Taxpayers. Who pays for the extra costs for a non-English speaking child’s education? Taxpayers.
The $1500 is a pittance by comparison.

So what do I think of the article? I say it does not tell the full story.

stanleybmanly's avatar

It’s crucial that we recognize the overall pattern of what’s happening in our society. @LuckyGuy is correct in that taxpayers subsidize the social needs of immigrants.
But the reality is that taxpayers are subsidizing the EMPLOYERS of these people. If a man works for a wage insufficient to feed his family, it falls on the taxpayers to pick up the slack. The same holds true for health care. The pressure is relentless on us as a society to devolve to the point that people are allowed to die in the streets as the beleaguered middle class, unable to hide its money is handed the bill to sustain the desperate people driving down its wages.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@stanleybmanly You are so correct. I remember about 10–15 years ago when WalMart first started paying wages so low, workers became eligible and qualified for food stamps, public assistance, etc. Taxpayers paid the difference.
Farm workers at one of the local farms here have been advised (and trained) by a workers aide organizations to work a certain number of minimum and maximum hours so they perfectly qualify for as many benefits as possible.
You’re welcome.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@cheebdragon Your article had real numbers. Thank you. I see that my estimates were not that far off.
If minimum wages were higher and the if as part of continued collection of public assistance checks there was a minimum requirement of at least 8 hours per week maybe farm operations would not need so many migrants.

eno's avatar

So by skimming to the numbers of Dutchess_III link, the economic benefit of illegal immigrants is around $9—$10 billion.

Now I looked up the economic costs. The S&P study in 2009 found that education costs for illegal immigrants including U.S born kids of illegals was $30 billion. If you project that to now (soon to be 2015), it is around $90 billion.

CIS and Rand Studies estimate health care hosts of illegal immigrants and U.S born illegals to be around $10 billion.

So the big picture is that a $10 billion economic benefit from illegal immigrants does not even come close to offsetting the $100 billion economic cost of the very same illegal immigrants.

cheebdragon's avatar

The part I don’t understand is why most of them cross the border and then stay in that state, why would you not want to get as far away from the border as possible?

johnpowell's avatar

@cheebdragon :: Are you saying that children are trying to get food stamps?

cheebdragon's avatar

@johnpowell Yeah Ryan, that’s what I said…little kids who can’t walk or talk are navigating their way down to social services to apply for food stamps….~
Your question was ”how many undocumented workers are walking in to get food stamps”….well, apparently many of the illegal immigrants who have kids

Dutchess_III's avatar

I really don’t know how that works. I know you have to provide SS numbers for everyone you claim for foodstamps.

cheebdragon's avatar

If you’re born in the United States, you get a social security number, these days the hospital pushes the info through for you and a couple of weeks later you get your number/card in the mail.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Right, but how would illegals get assistance if they don’t have a SS number?

cheebdragon's avatar

OMG, if an illegal has a baby in the United States they can collect assistance for the baby.

There is also this method.

eno's avatar

@Dutchess_III Right, but how would illegals get assistance if they don’t have a SS number?

link The findings include

Illegal immigrants are not “undocumented.” They have fraudulent documents such as counterfeit Social Security cards, forged drivers licenses, fake “green cards,” and phony birth certificates. Experts suggest that approximately 75 percent of working-age illegal aliens use fraudulent Social Security cards to obtain employment.

Most (98 percent) Social Security number (SSN) thieves use their own names with stolen numbers. The federal E-Verify program, now mandated in only 14 states, can detect this fraud. Universal, mandatory use of E-Verify would curb this and stop virtually 100 percent of child identity theft.

Illegal immigration and high levels of identity theft go hand-in-hand. States with the most illegal immigration also have high levels of job-related identity theft.

Children are prime targets.

Illegal aliens commit felonies in order to get jobs. Illegal aliens who use fraudulent documents, perjure themselves on I-9 forms, and commit identity theft in order to get jobs are committing serious offenses and are not “law abiding.”

Illegally employed aliens send billions of dollars annually to their home countries, rather than spending it in the United States and helping stimulate the American economy.

Tolerance of corruption erodes the rule of law. Corruption is a serious problem in most illegal aliens’ home countries. Allowing it to flourish here paves the way for additional criminal activity and increased corruption throughout society.

The Social Security Administration and Internal Revenue Service facilitate illegal immigrant-driven identity theft. Both turn a blind eye to massive SSN fraud and take no action to stop it. The Social Security Administration assigns SSNs to new-born infants that are being used illegally. The IRS demands that victims pay taxes on wages earned by illegal aliens using their stolen SSNs, while taking no action to stop the identity theft.

dappled_leaves's avatar

@cheebdragon How could they possibly get more money in assistance for the baby than the baby actually costs? That sounds like the dumbest scam ever.

cheebdragon's avatar

Oh silly me, thinking parents should be financially responsible for their own children, right?
With the exception of a few rare circumstances, if you have 2 arms, 2 legs, the ability to walk, are over the age of 18 and have half a fucking brain, you are perfectly capable of taking care of your own damn kids. Millions of people do it every fucking day, it’s not the responsibility of Taxpayers to care for your kids, most of them are barely getting by caring for their own family. The roads are shit to drive on, schools are so full that a class with less than 25 students is virtually unheard of, jails are overflowing and some cops are making millions off of taxpayers….fix that shit first and then you can pay $300—$800+ a month to feed and house illegal immigrants.

dappled_leaves's avatar

@cheebdragon All that this non-sequitur rant shows is that immigrants make you angry. We already got that.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

Such articles exist for one reason and one reason only:

To distract from the fact that entering a country and holding a job illegally is plainly illegal.

I’ve even seen billboards that talk about the additional tax revenue that illegals happen to bring in. This isn’t the point.

I don’t care if the flood of illegals coming in means every US family gets free ice cream for life. Rule of law cannot work if laws are enforced selectively.

I’ve had to play by the rules, but certain others don’t have to??

Any perceived benefit does not excuse criminal behavior.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Some crimes, on a humanitarian level, are less criminal than others. Take the flood of children fleeing from Central America. They’re criminals too. Should we just shoot them all?

cheebdragon's avatar

The popular notion is that it has been Mexico’s rural poor that have been eager to come here. The fifth largest country in the Americas, it has a population of more than 113 million and one of the world’s largest economies as the tenth largest oil producer in the world and the largest producer of silver. Mexico is home to the sixth largest electronics industry in the world and it produces the most automobiles of any North American nation. General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler have had plants in Mexico since the 1930s and Nissan and Volkswagen built plants there in the 1960s.

Mexico is regarded as a firmly established upper middle-income nation, but somewhere between 35% to 46% of the population, about 52 million persons, are regarded to be living in extreme to moderate poverty. It is that population that represents the bulk of the illegal aliens who enter the U.S. They send remittances back to Mexico estimated to be $25 billion, but that represents 0.2% of its GDP.

In 2004 the Center for Immigration Studies released a study that found that illegal alien households were estimated to use $2,700 in services than they pay in taxes, creating a fiscal burden of nearly $10.4 billion on the 2002 federal budget. That, no doubt, has increased over the past decade. Among the federal costs are Medicaid, treatment for the uninsured, food assistance programs, the federal prison and court systems, and federal aid to schools. Illegals generally lack a level of education and hold jobs that represent low levels of skill.”

To put it mildly, Mexico is happy to export its own citizens to become illegal aliens in the United States and now, thanks to President Obama’s policies, so do Honduras, San Salvador, and Guatemala. It’s worth noting that the children of illegals are awarded American citizenship at birth under current law.

In 2005, writing in The Washington Times on “Border policy perplexities, Stephen Johnson, a senior policy analyst for Latin America at the Heritage Foundation, noted that “Mexican oligarchs see free movement northward as a safety valve to relieve pressure from a million workers entering Mexico’s labor force with no job prospects. Rather than liberalize their economy to end corrupt monopolies, strengthen property rights and establish the rule of law, they would rather keep things as they are and merely ship their jobless, poorly educated throngs north.”


dappled_leaves's avatar

@cheebdragon Wow. Could you have found a more radical “news” source? That site is hilarious. The tag line “Canada Free Press…Because without America there is no Free World” still has me in stitches.

cheebdragon's avatar

Because Canadians are known for their radical ways and biased opinions on illegal immigration in other countries~

I have yet to see anything other than the original link for supporting illegal immigration, if you have an issue with radical Canadian articles, perhaps you would like to contribute something to the question in support of illegal immigration?

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