Why Socialists Love Illegal Immigration
By: Bruce Crawford
FrontPageMagazine.com | Friday, June 20, 2003
Members of the Left, who would lead us down Hayek's road to serfdom, have long rejected the Western notion of sovereignty. In particular, they believe any attempt to exercise control of our own borders is "racist," and possibly even a "hate crime." The Founding Fathers had a different view. In Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution, they empowered Congress to "suppress insurrections and repel Invasions." Today it seems America has lost control of its borders thanks to an invasion by illegal immigrants, and the Left continues to oppose American sovereignty for a simple reason: illegal immigration advances socialism.
This becomes apparent when one examines the "social injustices" trumpeted by the Left. Analyze how illegal immigration feeds those perceived injustices. Without hordes of illegal immigrants, the causes celebre of the Left disappear.
The left-wing think tank (a misnomer, as the Left doesn't think; it emotes), California Budget Project, frequently uses the impact of illegal immigration to build a case for mythical social injustices. The CBP's data are often cited by legislators and journalists.
One current cause celebre is the "earnings gap." Another hot topic is socialized health care. Let's take a look at just these two to see why socialists love illegals and abhor sovereignty.
In a January 2003 report, "The Economy Remains Stagnant," the CBP stated, "The number of working poor increased during the recession" (Mar. 2001 until Nov. 2002), and "The hourly earnings of low-wage and typical California workers made little progress over the past decade." Its thinly-veiled solution is for more socialism in the form of welfare programs and regulations on employers.
According to the INS Office of Policy and Planning, the total illegal immigrant population in the U.S. as of 2000 was 7 million, of which 32%, or 2.2 million, resided in California, comprising 6.5% of our total population. These figures do not include children born to illegals, children who were granted citizenship in violation of the intent of the framer of the Fourteenth Amendment who wrote the citizenship clause, Sen. Jacob Howard.
Since education is the best indicator of economic success, let's look at the educational level of immigrants. An analysis of Census Bureau data by the Center for Immigration Studies shows prior to the 1970s, immigrants not only came in much lower numbers, they came with much higher educational levels. Only 17.3 percent had less than an high school diploma, and their median income was slightly higher than that of native Americans. Of those who came in the 1990s, 34.6 percent -- exactly twice the pre-70s level -- did not have a diploma. Immigrants now comprise more than 40 percent of all high school dropouts in the workforce.
This surplus of uneducated, unskilled labor distorts the forces of supply and demand, locking wages at rock bottom. The socialist remedy is a "living wage." Yet a significant portion of the bottom 20 percent of wage earners are uneducated illegals.
Without the negative impact of uneducated illegals on the labor market, the Left's argument vaporizes. The second quintile (21-40 percent) would become the bottom quintile, dramatically lifting the hourly wage of that category. Many of the third quintile would move into the second one, etc. The increasing "earnings gap" and the rationalization for an economically crushing "living wage" would disappear. For those who are here legally, the rich may be getting richer, but the poor are getting richer even faster.
The second cause celebre is health care. Most of the legion of Democrat candidates for president, and many in Congress and state legislatures, are calling for various forms of increased socialized health care. They cite statistics purporting to show more and more people can't afford health insurance. Census Bureau data reveal some dirty little secrets here, too.
It is true since 1989 the national population without health insurance has grown by 7.8 million to 41.2 million in 2001. This is almost exactly the incease in the number of illegals in the U.S. When one counts both immigrants and children born to them, over 95 percent of the increase in uninsureds is the result of immigration, more than half of which (by some estimates, 70 percent) is attributable to illegal immigration.
The root cause of this is the illegals don't have the educational skills to command a job that includes medical benefits. But that doesn't stop the socialists from calling for more federal and state health care programs, more federal and state regulation of the health care industry, more laws requiring employers to provide health insurance, etc., ad nauseam.
The naive are fond of saying cheap illegal labor is good for us, and good for our economy. False. The economic impact of uneducated, unskilled illegal labor fuels the arguments of the Left, and accelerates our journey down the road to socialism.
To stay free and prosperous, Congress needs to live up to its constitutional responsibility to execute the laws of the Union and repel an immigration invasion. In so doing, it would defang the class warfare arguments the Left uses to advance socialism.
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