Illegal Aliens Drive Wages UP? Right.
You will probably hear the "open borders" advocates start trumpeting a new study which concludes that "immigrants" have not depressed wages in California. The study, "How Immigrants Affect California Wages And Employment," is flawed and misleading for the following reasons:
1. The Study Ignores Taxes And Public Spending
The study's author does not even purport to consider the effect of illegal immigration on taxes and spending. He does not, for example, factor in the cost of educating the children of illegal aliens, or the cost of catching, prosecuting and imprisoning illegal aliens who commit violent crimes. How much better off would Americans be without the tax burden that illegal aliens create? The author makes no effort to quantify that tax burden, and you know the expression: it's not what you make that counts, it's what you keep.
2. The Study Equates Wages With Insterstate Migration
The study's author concludes that: i) there has been no net migration of American citizens out of California; and ii) therefore, immigration has not depressed the wages of Americans working here. But that makes no sense. Even assuming that the influx of aliens has not persuaded more Americans to flee the state than to enter it, that circumstance in no way proves that wages are just as high as they would be without the massive influx. On the contrary, without the massive invasion of illegal aliens, one would expect American workers to flock to California for the climate -- and, of course, the opportunity to be "discovered."
3. The Study Equates Legal And Illegal Immigration.
The study's author does not even purport to distinguish between legal and illegal aliens. This is important for two reasons. First, the author includes in his study data from immigrants who have Ph.D's and work in high-tech jobs. Do you think the immigrants designing microchips are the same ones walking across the border from Mexico? Second, the author does not even attempt to explain how he could possibly have reliable data on the income of illegal aliens, who are paid cash "under the table." How then, can he reliably measure and compare the wages of illegal aliens, legal aliens, and American citizens?
4. The Study Assumes But Does Not Prove Aliens Take "Jobs No One Wants"
Upon reviewing data showing that "immigrants" dominate various low-paying jobs, the author simply assumes that Americans do not want those jobs. That assumption, however, is no substitute for actual data. One can just as easily argue that Americans do not want those jobs AT THE WAGES EMPLOYERS PAY ILLEGALS, but would be happy to do the work at higher wages -- wages the employers would pay if there were not an army of illegal aliens ready, willing and able to do that work for low wages, especially if they do not pay income taxes, and enjoy the benefits of "free" education, health care, welfare for their children, etc.
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The study thus fails to show that California wages are unaffected by the massive influx of "immigrants," and does not even begin to address the impact of "immigrants" on taxes and expenditures. You can bet, however, that the "open borders" advocates will claim the study "proves" that "immigrants" are "good for the economy." Your job, when someone makes that claim, is to ask them to explain the study to you and, when they can't, tell them why the study is no good.