“Well, Columbus wasn’t looking for America, my man, but that turned out to be pretty okay for everyone. You’re here, know what I mean?”-Bernard from Old School
We all float down here. The idea that immigration is essential to our national survival is, like so much else that governs official policy, built on a myth. Stefan Molyneux makes the point that the increasingly feminized and effete nature of education, politics, and our general discourse has caused emotionality and sentimentality to take precedence over facts, and this is painfully evident in the decision-making that goes from Washington to Ottawa to Brussels to points beyond. Nowhere is this more obvious than in welfare spending and immigration policy. The state foots the bill for language courses, housing, and other federal programs that ostensibly find work for immigrants (the US government even spends tax dollars to advertise food stamps in Mexico), but does all of this end up paying dividends? Ann Corcoran of the indispensable Refugee Re-Settlement Watch discusses the justification for refugee re-settlement filling gaps in the labor market:
The American people are constantly told that refugee resettlement serves to fill the labor needs that go unmet, due to low birth rates, an aging population, and the unwillingness of Americans to perform certain kinds of menial labor. How does this mantra square with the data reported by federal and state government?...The most recent report on performance indicators of refugee resettlement from the US Office of Refugee Resettlement suggested that the unemployment rate among Somali refugees nationwide is about 50%.
As of 2014, 80% of all refugees in the state of Maine were unemployed, as were 69% in California, 62% in Florida, 68% in Washington, 68% in Ohio, 71% in New Jersey, 61% in Rhode Island, 65% in Georgia, and 54% in Texas. Those are astonishing numbers, and these refugees, don’t forget, are being sponsored by your taxes and settled in your communities against your will. Far from taking the jobs Americans won’t do, they’re not even working at all! According to The Economist:
In the very short run, the IMF estimates that refugees will add around 0.19% of GDP to public expenditure in the European Union (0.35% in Germany) in 2016. This will add to public debt, and given higher joblessness among refugees, unemployment will rise. But looking only at their fiscal impact is too narrow a focus. Later on, as the new arrivals integrate into the workforce, they are expected to boost annual output by 0.1% for the EU as a whole, and 0.3% in Germany. They should also help (a little bit) to reverse the upward creep of the cost of state pensions as a share of GDP, given their relative youth.
Patriotism has become synonymous with stubborn, backward fossils who are merely obstructing the forward march of Progress. The borders must be thrown open if we have any compassion at all.
But the thing is, they don’t integrate. Only 13 percent of recent refugees in Germany have found work, and up to three quarters of Germany’s refugees will still be unemployed in five years’ time, according to one government minister. The Turkish “migrant workers” imported after World War II to this day are regarded -by Reuters no less- as being the least assimilated group in Deutschland; their unemployment rate is over half-a-century later still three times’ that of the native Germans’. So much for the “worker” part of “migrant worker”—in fact, so much for “migrant,” as they ultimately stuck around and never went home. They continue to cost the state, in terms of welfare spending and expenses stemming from increased policing and security measures due to crime and acts of terror, as well as in the un-quantifiable but certainly tangible loss of social cohesion. As Edward Goldsmith found:
It is important to realize that social systems exist in time as well as in space. They are 4-dimensional. Disintegration is not only spatial but also temporal. As pathological disintegration sets in, so one must expect to see a corresponding decrease in their temporal organization. An individual in a stable, ordered society considers himself one stage in a long process, of which his ancestors were the previous stages and his descendants the subsequent ones. That is why there is little fear of death and little concern with the after-life in such societies. A man considers that he will simply live on in his children. This is particularly well illustrated by Hsu with regard to traditional Chinese society. As a society disintegrates, a man tends to regard himself more as isolated temporarily as well as spatially. That is why he is over-concerned with his own petty interests to the detriment of those of his community, and with the present and short term to the exclusion of the long term. As a result, there is nothing to hold together the larger 4-dimensional social system, save a set of precarious external controls which is unlikely to prevent further disintegration both in space and in time.
Germans, and Westerners in general, are simply not re-producing, they’re turning in-ward and in many cases they’re dropping out of society altogether. They no longer have a vested interest in a society that doesn’t have a vested interest in them. Why bother? the thought process goes. I’m extremely hard on many of my fellow Westerners for their selfishness and short-sightedness, but in some ways I feel sorry for them because our elites have so cheapened what it means to be American, or German, or British (and they’ve displayed an on-going preferential treatment of foreigners, giving them benefits over and above what a native person could ever hope to receive), that it’s a common reaction for someone to simply look out for number one.
The modern welfare state, in its replacement of the family and destruction of traditional values and a sense of community, has rendered so many lives without meaning and purpose that many people are simply wasting away, dying of despair, or otherwise pursuing oblivion through excess. For others, they find meaning in the temporal concerns of “social justice” that promise to fill that yawning void of meaning and purpose and faith, but it requires discarding the old, dated baggage of religion and familial duty, and detonating the barrier to one-world harmony called “nationalism.” Patriotism has become synonymous with stubborn, backward fossils who are merely obstructing the forward march of Progress. The borders must be thrown open if we have any compassion at all.
Ninety million Americans (not including illegal immigrants and foreign residents, who are often eligible for entitlements—God knows why) are on some form of government subsidy, which is around one in four. Since the mid-1960s, we’ve spent $22 trillion—trillion—dollars on over eighty different welfare programs, and this does not include Social Security, Medicare, or unemployment. The costs are simply staggering, and all of that spending has done nothing to alleviate poverty in this country; in fact, it’s exacerbated it. I’m tired of financing failure. I’m tired of being used as a cash cow for ill-conceived and poorly-implemented programs. I’m tired of being shaken down by the government at gunpoint while simultaneously being told that I’m the problem. I’m not saying just let poor people die, as the Left likes to caricature conservatives’ and libertarians’ positions. No, I believe that there are cheaper, healthier, and much more effective ways to get people out of poverty, and that includes helping people help themselves. There’s a world of difference between what I wish were true (which is what the Left takes as axiomatic is true) and what is actually true.
It’s possible to have open borders and it’s possible to have a welfare state, but it is impossible to have both.
Our present immigration policy only further intensifies the strain on the welfare state, accelerating its inevitable collapse. The larger the percentage of foreign-born individuals in the United States, the stronger the negative impact on job creation. Since the 1965 Immigration Act, the quality of the immigrant (in terms of education and skill set) has declined dramatically. Prior to the Act, we had a period of about forty years of extremely low levels of immigration, and those few immigrants that did arrive were almost exclusively from Ireland, Great Britain, and Germany. The new crop of post-1965 immigrants represents a net negative to the taxpayers as they are low-skill, low-education, and low-English proficiency, and are more likely to use welfare than native-born Americans. Illegal immigrants alone definitively cost American taxpayers a minimum of a net $116 billion dollars a year, though I’ve seen figures as high as $135 billion a year. It is difficult to know the upper limit as we do not know the upper limit of illegals. Some believe it could be as many as thirty million. As the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) notes:
In 1995, the U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform recommended curtailing family-based immigration and replacing the “failed and expensive regulatory system [for skill-based immigration] with one that is market-driven.” Along these lines, the Commission recommended that, “it is not in the national interest to admit unskilled workers” because “the U.S. economy is showing difficulty in absorbing disadvantaged workers.”…U.S. politicians continue to ignore these recommendations, bowing to corporate demands for unskilled labor rather than taking a realistic look at immigration’s effect on poverty and the American worker.
Another hidden cost of immigration is that much of the earnings of immigrant workers are sent back home. Illegal labor generates an untaxed economy in the United States equivalent to the GDP of Sweden annually. A stunning 2% of Mexico’s GDP consists of wages sent back from relatives in the United States. And let’s be honest—almost none of these immigrants are filling vital positions in our country. Gavin McInnes points out the new immigrants—illegal and legal—mostly fill jobs teenagers and college kids used to do. Only 6.5% of all legal immigrants admitted to the United States possessed skills “deemed essential to the US economy.” Milton Friedman declared that it’s possible to have open borders and it’s possible to have a welfare state, but it is impossible to have both.
The evidence bears this out. The reason the social programs of the Scandinavian countries that get the liberals all hard work(ed) is because of, until recently, the population’s stability and homogeneity. Now that they’re taking in masses of poorly educated migrants, the system is breaking down. According to U.S. News, Sweden—which accepted more asylum seekers per capita in 2015 than any other country in the OECD-surveyed region—spent $66.1 million on integration measures in 2015. The sum was nearly one percent of the country’s total GDP, which is a whole lot more than the IMF estimated the cost to EU countries to be, and ten times the “eventual benefit” the refugees would have on GDP once (my note: if) they integrated into the workforce. Only 500 of the 163,000 people granted asylum in Sweden in 2015 (0.3%) have found work.
Elsewhere, in Australia, per The Daily Telegraph, “Middle Eastern migrants are piling on to the dole queue—with a 33 per cent jobless rate during their first five years in Australia (six times higher than the national average)…Refugees receive up to 510 hours of free English language tuition and the federal government is spending $22 million on training and support for young jobseekers on humanitarian visas.” Amy Minsky of Global News reports that, in 2016, “One year after the first of 35,000 Syrian refugees landed in Canada, only half of all adults — approximately 9,000 individuals — [had] found work.” Parliamentary Secretary to the Immigration Minister Arif Virani said, “In 2016-17, $900 million was dedicated to language training for all newcomers, with $30 million set aside specifically for the influx of Syrian refugees.”
Three out of four refugees who came to Denmark in the early 2000s are still unemployed. Courtesy of accepting migrants, Austria’s unemployment rose by 6.1% in one year alone. Numbers exceeding 90% of migrants remaining unemployed are the rule not the exception throughout Europe. There are “hidden” costs as well: in Italy scabies is rife amongst “migrants” (of 46,000 migrants tested in 2016, 4,700 were infested), and one in four migrants is said by doctors to have Hepatitis C, according to The Spectator. Migrants have had a net drain on the country of over $2 billion US dollars and counting.
There is also the little issue of 74% of first-time asylum applicants in Europe being male, which is creating a huge gender imbalance, and is compounded by the fact that many of these men bring a very different set of values regarding women. Even better, according to the Center for Immigration Studies:
Even if Syrian refugees themselves were to pose no threat for the time being, the risk—as voiced by the head of Germany’s domestic intelligence services—could come later on as radical Islamists prey on vulnerable communities and recruit young refugees who might feel somewhat estranged in their hosting country… Fewer than 60 percent of Afghani, Bhutanese, Burmese, Hmong, Liberian, and Somali refugees arriving during 2004-13 were even literate in their native language at arrival.
Not the next great crop of engineers, doctors, and inventors in this group it looks like, but what about those who are second-generation and later? Consider:
U.S.-born minorities (including Asians, African Americans, Hispanics, Native Americans, and other ethnicities) make up just 8 percent of U.S.-born innovators. However, these groups total 32 percent of the U.S.-born population. Despite comprising 13 percent of the native-born population of the United States, African Americans comprise just half a percent of U.S.-born innovators.
So where’s the upside? Where’s the benefit to the host countries? Some different cuisine and a whole host of rapes, murders, terrorist attacks, shattered communities, and a little sprig of White Guilt on top? Are we de-constructing Penn State-Brandywine professor Angela Putnam’s assertion that the idea of a meritocracy represents “whiteness ideology”? If so, the exercise has been, to date, a resounding success. Deficits, disease, and nail bombs—good stuff.