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Ear to the Ground

Big Payoff Seen in Immigration Reform

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Posted on Jan 9, 2010
Legalize LA
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Marchers call for immigration reform at a May Day rally in downtown Los Angeles last year.

Despite the American penchant for xenophobia, a report from two policy institutes concludes that legalizing the more than 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. would boost wages, consumption, jobs and tax revenue. —JCL

CNN:

Legalization of the more than 11 million unauthorized immigrants in the United States would raise wages, increase consumption, create jobs and generate more tax revenue, two policy institutes say in a joint report Thursday.

The report by the Center for American Progress and the American Immigration Council estimates that “comprehensive immigration reform that legalizes currently unauthorized immigrants and creates flexible legal limits on future immigration” would yield at least $1.5 trillion in added U.S. gross domestic product over a 10-year period.

“This is a compelling economic reason to move away from the current ‘vicious cycle’ where enforcement-only policies perpetuate unauthorized migration and exert downward pressure on already low wages, and toward a ‘virtuous cycle’ of worker empowerment in which legal status and labor rights exert upward pressure on wages,” study author Raul Hinojosa-Ojeda writes.

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Liquor Store Larry's avatar

By Liquor Store Larry, January 13, 2010 at 9:13 am Link to this comment

“legal status and labor rights exert upward pressure on wages,” study author Raul Hinojosa-Ojeda writes” - this is almost comedic in nature. Is it a coincidence that the fellow who issues this absurd position is Hispanic and what makes Mexicans think they have an inalienable (no pun intended) right to legal status and labor rights in the United States of America. I guarantee you, Americans have no such rights in Mexico.

El Toro Crappo!

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Liquor Store Larry's avatar

By Liquor Store Larry, January 13, 2010 at 9:06 am Link to this comment

I am comfortable with my analogy to refute the hyperbolic and exagerated manner in which the article dismesses legitimate critisizm as “xenophibia”. Without being able to scream “racism” people like Ardee would actually have to present a position.

Mexico is a resource-rich country with an astronomically wealthy aristocracy who sip champagne and eat caviar at the expense of American taxpayers?

If those who immigrate here in violation of law “only take jobs that Americans won’t do,” why then has meat and poultry packing gone from the highest paid job in the industrial sector to the lowest? A Bear Sterns study contends that government figures are skewed and that the actual number here illegally is closer to 30 million.

Whether it is 12 million or 30, when there are only 1.1 million agricultural jobs in California, why then do we need a guest worker program? Could it be that when immigrants arrive here illegally, they also “don’t want the jobs that Americans won’t do,” thus we foster an eternal exodus of humanity who do “the jobs Americans won’t do” for 20 minutes each?

Cesar Chavez lent his UFW staff to immigration servics because as he stated, he could not unionize farm labor without stemming the flow of impoverished migrants and yet we celebrate his birthday but ignore his words. That flow has become a hemorrhage and it is not just farm workers anymore but laborers who take every job that can not be outsourced destroying the American economy from the bottom up, even as Wall St plunders it from the top down.

At Ellis Island, immigrants entering America were screened for diseases. Did you know that illegals entering the country bring diseases that were all but eradicated but are making a comeback? According to the CDC, some are resistant to treatment and include hepatitis, tuberculosis and that old favorite syphilis, just to name a few. As a result of illegal labor, spinach is more dangerous than marijuana.

The most fundamental aspect of any country’s sovereignty is borders. Our addiction to what is laughably called cheap labor is costing us many billions annually, destroying our quality of life and is unsustainable.

Next time you are gloating over the price of strawberries, I suggest you check your tax returns, your schools, your children’s health, your prisons and your emergency rooms for a glimpse of the real cost.

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By ardee, January 13, 2010 at 3:48 am Link to this comment

IF I told you clowns I did not want strangers bangin my wife you would call it xenophobia!

I wonder how your wife feels about this? I also wonder at the workings of a mind that discusses a topic, illegal aliens, and uses such an occurrence to make a case…The worms in your head may be showing…


On a more rational note….........

truedigger3, January 12 at 5:02 pm

Thanks for rescuing this thread firstly.

I think we might then agree that economics plays the chief role in such illegal immigration. I do not see where you get the idea that I approve of eleven million illegals in this nation, only seek to discuss rational reasons for that condition as well as the defend these folks as both human and operating on lives wrecked by American corporations.

I do not think one can legally tell a corporation where to build its plants, though a nation can certainly reinstate tariffs on importations, control the granting of govt contracts to those companies who make the products here and such delimiters.

I am sure you are not worried about who your wife is sleeping with, thankfully.

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Liquor Store Larry's avatar

By Liquor Store Larry, January 12, 2010 at 4:18 pm Link to this comment

By the way, nobody has bought that BS soft peddled figure of 11 million. There are more than that in California alone. Bear Stearns who have no libera axe to grind and were only looking at dollars and cents called it more like 30 million 5 years ago but of course TRUTH does not serve your purposes ....notwithstanding “the American penchant for xenophobia”  IF I told you clowns I did not want strangers bangin my wife you would call it xenophobia!

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Liquor Store Larry's avatar

By Liquor Store Larry, January 12, 2010 at 4:15 pm Link to this comment

Despite the American penchant for xenophobia, a report from two policy institutes concludes that legalizing the more than 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. would boost wages, consumption, jobs and tax revenue. —JCL


HEY, WHY DONT YA JUST throw out ALL of the American citizens and sell tickets to enter the country like they do at Disneyland and that would make even more money. Did you ever stop to ask yourself is “American citizenship” good for anything anymore? IS THERE ANY BENEFIT TO CITIZENSHIP or is that just who you go after INSTEAD of illegal aliens? I have the answer for you. You can wipe your a** with American citizenship. If a whore takes it in every orifice at once she can make more money than possibly doing one or two more conventional sex acts that that is a perfect metaphor for the screwing traitors like JCL and CNN are giving the United State of America as it used to be known!

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, January 12, 2010 at 3:03 pm Link to this comment

I am a proponent of fair and balanced trade in lieu of “free” trade. Items that this country purchases from abroad should be subject to the same standards required of domestically produced items.

We have to get China, Japan and India to return the dollars they have of ours in return for goods and services or quit buying from them.

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By truedigger3, January 12, 2010 at 1:02 pm Link to this comment

ardee wrote:

“As to Jim Yell, January 10 at 3:02 pm and his theory of why so many illegals come here.

One must consider the role of American corporations in wrecking the economies of the nations providing so many desperate folks. But I applaud you desire to broaden yourself by learning other languages….”
___________________________________________________

ardee,

But this way you are are penalizing the working people of this country twice:
First, the corporations exported their jobs to foreign countries and many became unemployed.
Second, those unemployed workers have to compete for the few jobs that are left behind with an endless stream of illigal immigrants who will work almost for nothing under any condition without complaining for fear of deportation.
To remedy what the corporations are doing abroad, is not to open the borders but to enact laws and regulations that make it unattractivee for corporations to relocate manufacturing plants overseas.
Golobalization and “free” trade is not a law of nature and what is done by man can be undone by man.

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By samosamo, January 12, 2010 at 10:59 am Link to this comment

By purplewolf, January 10 at 2:47 pm #
Samosamo: thanks for the book info. I plan on checking into
them.
*******************************************

Amazon sells the book for $12.52 which has all those
mentioned titles in it.

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By ardee, January 12, 2010 at 4:09 am Link to this comment

PatrickHenry, January 10 at 12:10 pm #

Perhaps if those “illegals” were to register and perform a term of mandatory work for the federal or state govenments for a probationary period of time, learning the english language and American history required of “legal” immigrants, we could get our parks painted and streets cleaned and repaired.

I think this is an excellent idea frankly… It actually surprises me to agree with said poster.

As to Jim Yell, January 10 at 3:02 pm and his theory of why so many illegals come here.

One must consider the role of American corporations in wrecking the economies of the nations providing so many desperate folks. But I applaud you desire to broaden yourself by learning other languages….

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By truedigger3, January 10, 2010 at 5:26 pm Link to this comment

truthdig quoted the following quote:

“The report by the Center for American Progress and the American Immigration Council estimates that “comprehensive immigration reform that legalizes currently unauthorized immigrants and creates flexible legal limits on future immigration” would yield at least $1.5 trillion in added U.S. gross domestic product over a 10-year period.”
___________________________________________________


Really.! No kidding! Are you serious??!!.
Who is behind these phony “studies” with its manufactured results, and who is financing “the Center for American Progress” and “the American Immigration council”.
The Business interests love illegal immigration, because it provides them with unlimited supply of cheap and intimidated labor who will work like oxes almost for nothing without any benefits or rights whatsover, and this is putting a downward pressures on the opportunities, wages and benefits available to citizens especially minorities.
Illegal immigrants just don’t only work in farms and resturants but they took many badly needed jobs by Americans in the construction and meat packing industries and gradually flowing inte the trades like mechanics ,electricians and plumbing.
Illegal immigration is the modern age slavery and it will lead and is leading to the same problems slavery produced.

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By Carl, January 10, 2010 at 1:13 pm Link to this comment

People are not really mad at the desperate illegals, they are mad at a corrupt two-party monopoly in which bribery is legal that allows this to continue. The immigration problem is one of “catch and release”. A report last year in the El Paso Times said that illegals are not deported until after their sixth arrest. Here is a simple solution from 2002:

#1 Establish 24/7 federal courts to instantly hear deportation cases. 

    Most American cities have continuous courts in session, like “night court”, to quickly resolve minor legal issues without keeping people in jail for days.  However, the entire US Court system runs on a formal “calendar” with regular hours and holidays.  Because of the flood of immigration cases, the calendar has backlogged in many districts. Since it is impossible to detain most illegal immigrants who are arrested for several weeks until their hearing, hundreds of thousands are set free each year.  This has become so well-known that one-third of those arrested for violating immigration laws demand a deportation hearing, even those caught “red-handed” crossing the border or presenting false passports or visas at airport arrival stations.  As a result, 85% of those arrested who demand a hearing are freed in the USA after promising to appear a few weeks later; 90% of them never show.  The recent “shoe bomb” terrorist was traveling with a forged passport.  If he had preferred to enter the USA for terrorist activities, he may have been released into the USA despite his fake passport with a promise to appear at his deportation hearing.

    Tom Ridge should tackle this problem immediately by requesting the establishment of ten federal immigration courts in areas with high case loads.  Ideally, some of these courts would be inside major airports, like: JFK, LAX, and Miami.  He would request the appointment of 100 new magistrates and introduce the esteemed judges to military and police life of working nights, weekends and holidays so detainees who demand a hearing see a federal magistrate within hours of arrest.  Aliens attempting to play the court game will be sent back across the border or put on a flight home within 24 hours.  In other cases, the judge may determine that a mistake may have been made and order the suspect released, detained, or released on bond.  Ironically, this will eventually save money each year because of lower prisoner detention and transport costs.  Eventually, the illegal immigration game players will learn that the “demand a hearing” loophole has closed and the problem will subside.  This will free Border Patrol agents to spend more time making “new” arrests and allow immigration officers to pursue those who overstay visas.

#2 Aliens arrested in the USA are not eligible for political asylum. 

    The “political asylum” game is well known in the Third World.  A billion people on Earth are repressed and can present an excuse for asylum.  They are welcome to apply at any US embassy or consulate overseas, or while they are legally visiting the USA.  However, they should not be allowed that option after arrest for violating US law by entering illegally or overstaying their visa.  Each year, thousands of people who are caught at US airports with a forged passports or visas demand “political asylum”, and then are allowed to enter the USA anyway pending a hearing.  Thousands more who are arrested for overstaying their visas or lacking any legal documents scream “political asylum” for prompt release.  Over 90% never show up for their hearing.” 
http://www.g2mil.com/Jan2002.htm

—————————————
If Obama and his Dems addressed this issue and implemented this idea, it would create millions of jobs as foreign workers are sent home and his poll numbers would soar.

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By Jim Yell, January 10, 2010 at 11:02 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The last time we legalized illegals in this country we were promised that our borders would be controlled and nothing happened to change the dynamic.

We have a group of people who encourage and protect illegal Immigration into this country. The forces at work to send these people here is overpopulation, laws in their country’s of origin that do nothing to protect and guarantee wages and no birth control

We did not need another 100,000,000 people in this country and it has had a negative effect. This can not be blamed just on the illegals though. It was not their fault that we allowed a situation which mandated that the new entries did not have to learn the laws and language of the country and would burden the tax structure by requiring government and education to provide services in the languages of each person. Where as it should be their responsibility to deal with our way of doing things they are excused and we are saddled with a huge expense.

Now there are so many in the country that it would be very difficult to send them back where they came from. So a process of requiring them to learn English, learn the laws and swear allegence to this country might be the best vehicle to make them part of the greater society, but with this there must be no more tolerance for illegal entry into the country.

If the past is any clue to the future we all better learn Spanish and probably Chinese.

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By purplewolf, January 10, 2010 at 10:47 am Link to this comment

Samosamo: thanks for the book info. I plan on checking into them.

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By samosamo, January 10, 2010 at 10:30 am Link to this comment

Yep, here we are again, another controversial topic to winnow
out those who have a bit of concern about what the hell is
going on with america.

I rightfully say that there are more than enough ILLEGAL
people that the citizens of america have to deal with and they
are the crap in washington d.c. disguised as our elected
leaders whom some at this site and on this post seem to think
are doing a bang up good job of running/ruining this country
so I rightfully so object vehemently to legalizing another
11,000,000 people into this country to further burden an
‘infrastructure’ that is falling apart because the illegal people
in washington d. c. want a better behaving work force who
would be perfectly happy under bidding for jobs that citizens
of america are more and more thinking they should have
without this monarchial push to slaves and serfs.

And I find it curious that there doesn’t seem to be the least bit
of concern about trying to fix america or at least get rid of the
aristocracy/monarchial governing we have turned to in those
‘elite’s’ dire hour of grand theft.

But don’t take my word for it, grow a set of balls, shuck off
your attention deficit disorders long enough to get Thomas
Paine’s books or works and read ‘Common Sense’, ‘Age of
Reason’, ‘Rights of Man’,  and the really down and dirty stuff,
‘Blasphemy of the Bible’ , ‘An Essay on Dreams’ and
‘Examination of the Prophecies’.

Dad gonit, I think I just witnessed the physical act of a
suggestion ‘going in one ear and out the other’.

We have to fix this country before we should even consider
increasing the ‘citizenship’ by another so called 11,000,000
souls which in reality is a very low ball number from all I have
ever read about the illegals in this country because those
would really just become those that will ‘look after’ the rest of
us behind the barbed wire.

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By Timothy Gawne, January 10, 2010 at 9:47 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The proposed immigration ‘reform’ is not aimed at legalizing a mere 11 million
foreign nationals who have entered the country illegally.  It would in effect
completely open the doors to the over-populated third world, and if enacted,
would almost certainly increase the population of the United States to over a
billion in only a handful of decades.  A policy that gives a Mexican drug gang
member the same right to come here as a Nobel prize-winning Indian scientist
cannot be justified on the grounds of either morality or national interest, but
aims only to increase the population independent of any other criteria, and the
only reason to do that is to drive up profits for the few by driving down wages
for the many.

This is traditionally known as “forcing” population growth, and despite all the
propaganda about how wonderful it will be, in practice every time a
government has moved to rapidly increase population growth rates the result
has ALWAYS, without exception, been more poverty.  Look at the results of the
Mexican elites’ recent policy of encouraging people to have seven kids each,
this did not make Mexico “bigger and better” as promised, but only drove the
average person into miserable poverty.  And it can happen here.

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, January 10, 2010 at 8:10 am Link to this comment

Perhaps if those “illegals” were to register and perform a term of mandatory work for the federal or state govenments for a probationary period of time, learning the english language and American history required of “legal” immigrants, we could get our parks painted and streets cleaned and repaired.

Only then would we know those who really wish to become Americans from those who wish to prey on them.

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By dihey, January 10, 2010 at 7:26 am Link to this comment

On the issue of legalization of illegal immigrants there are two opposing views, each powerfully supported by large segments of our nation. One is “yes”, the other is “no”. Since they hold each other in balance in Congress nothing can get done without giving each side some satisfaction. In other words: compromise.
Here are my suggestions:
1. Children born in the US continue to be full US citizens. This should not even be debatable.
2. Children who were illegally brought into the US with their parent(s)or entered illegally alone when they were 18 years or younger can go on a fast track to naturalization. There are actually analogous precedents of children which came to the US with their “green card” parents when they were younger than 18 and were allowed by courts to return as “green carders” to the US after their parents had emigrated for example to Canada. Their parents were not given this privilege.
3. A new category of legal residents, let me call them “orange carders”, is set up for the remaining illegals. Like the “green carders” “orange carders” can live, work, and own property legally in the US but they cannot become US citizens unless they return to their country of origin and apply for a “green card”.

I am not very happy myself with these suggestions, especially the end of number three, but I cannot see any other solution that might be acceptable to both the “yes” and “no” and, sadly, any compromise might not even be acceptable to either side whose views seem to have hardened to immovable.

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By ardee, January 10, 2010 at 5:18 am Link to this comment

The issue of illegal immigration is simply one of the ways we the people are kept separate and at each others throats.As long as we are given someone else to hate we will fail to realize that we have far more in common with those who risk everything to come here and earn enough money to feed their families than we do with billionaires who rob us, weaken our economy and mortgage our children’s future for a few more shekels for their already massive offshore accounts.

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By samosamo, January 9, 2010 at 9:43 pm Link to this comment

Yes, the comments here seem to indicate the ludicrousness of
this idea which is meant, as people here comment, but also in
the supposedly new legals to use the public services, which they
most likely have not paid for, and that money will go into the
pockets of the private companies that benefit from people using
social services from food stamps to ER healthcare.

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By purplewolf, January 9, 2010 at 8:14 pm Link to this comment

Do they really think we are so stupid to believe this tripe? The wages will never go up. The PTB have been trying to drive wages down for decades. People have paid more for health insurance, that is if their employers even provide some sort of half assed medical coverage in the first place. We pay more for less of everything, not counting the roll backs in wages, just to keep a job for a little while longer. If it were up to the likes of John McCain’s and his like, who voted against every increase in minimum wage since his time in office, yet who benefit from keeping the working people down, we the people would be paying these thiefs money just to work for them and become the new age slaves for these crooks. It no doubt is part of the PNAC that Cheney, Rice, Rummy and those crooks are so eager to get back on track. Only problem with that is when no one can afford the barest of necessities at an over inflated price, do these controlling idiots think that everyone will roll over and die or become indentured slaves for generations to come? 

By allowing illegals a legal status will do nothing but add more debt to the system. It will lower the standards even more than they have been in the last 8-9 years. It will benefit no one in the real working community to allow this to happen. The only good thing I have read about is that since the employment-or lack thereof jobs in America that even the people of Mexico are not in such a rush to come here as the low paying jobs are gone and there is less incentive for them to go across the border looking for a low paying job. Perhaps they would do much better at home in their country of origin. That’s where we sent most of the good paying auto industry jobs starting in the 1970’s.

The only jobs left for the poor working and middle working class in America is to become cannon fodder for the MIC. Don’t think to many illegals would want to come here for that type of job, but then again I have heard that since they are not citizens, they do not have to serve in the military, so our citizens become the living targets for the dreams of world dominance of the madmen who are replacing the American worker with cheaper illegal workers.

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By Commune115, January 9, 2010 at 5:39 pm Link to this comment

Obama first needs to bring down the double digit unemployment level. I’m actually on the immigrants’ side here, but the truth is that if the White House tries to legalize all these immigrants in 2010 with the current jobs situation, the right-wing will boost its ranks and you can bet the Tea Party will become a strong force in mainstream politics.

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By bob, January 9, 2010 at 4:51 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The “Big Payoff” would be an even more massive defeat for the Dems in 2010.  Insane is not the half of it. 

How about negating NAFTA—which was never legally passed as a treaty must be, in order to be be binding over national law?  NAFTA could simply be declared null and void.  Just that action would help both U.S. and Mexican workers and farmers immensely.

The tide to globalism (i.e., a global plantation economy) must, must be stopped.  The desire of our masters for open borders for workers is to create a permanent class of near slaves (which of course would include the majority of U.S. citizens).

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By vesey, January 9, 2010 at 3:12 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The rational has always been that illegal aliens take only the jobs that Americans don’t want. Nonsense. All they accomplish is keeping low paying jobs low paying. Those 11,000,000 illegals gone from this country would force the low paying “unattractive” jobs to be better paying in order to become attractive to legal residents. The other reason is to create more liberal politician’s “locked in” voters through the carrot of free benefits paid for by tax payers…............

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G.Anderson's avatar

By G.Anderson, January 9, 2010 at 1:41 pm Link to this comment

Yes Carl…..you hit a bullseye..

last time I checked we were on the verge of a depression, unemployement is not expected to improve for another 10 years, and California’s likely bankrupcy is in part caused by the cost of paying for illegal immigration.

Why would we want to follow the plan of the multinational crooks, who have strangled Mexico’s economy for the last 100 years, gutted their resoures, making it impossible for workers to get a decent wage, or support their families. Forcing them North, in desperation.

They have the same plan for this country….and their close to succeeding.

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By Carl, January 9, 2010 at 12:02 pm Link to this comment

Why does “truthdig” repeat garbage from CNN? That is owned by billionaires and run by millionaires who want to keep millions of desperate workers flooding across the border to drive down wages. Hasn’t everyone read that zero new jobs were created this past decade? Then how does encouraging yet another 11 million illegal to break the law help us?

The logic of this vague “article” is bizarre. How could it boost GDP by 1.5 trillion? Perhaps they mean the added activity from the need for more schools, hospitals, welfare, and prisons. No problem, out city governments can just borrow more. I won’t bother to Google the two “policy institutes” to find out their corporate sponsors. I can provide a list of a dozens others who show the opposite. Perhaps we should send ships to India, China, Russia, Ukraine and Brazil to haul another 11 million poor desperate and unskilled workers to the USA to boost GDP?

I suppose truthdig posted this right-wing corporate propaganda to be “fair and balanced.”

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By P. T., January 9, 2010 at 11:50 am Link to this comment

Boost wages for whom?  Boost wages for which class?  Wages would be driven down for people at the bottom, by “immigration reform,” bacause of the increase in the supply of low income workers.  That is standard economic theory.

Incomes for the elite would be driven up by the access to cheap labor at the bottom of the income scale.  Notice that the authors of these studies never call for open borders for economists and other elite professionals.  They are hypocritical and do not have the courage of their convictions.

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