Thursday, September 20, 2007

Oklahoma and Arizona, unable to deport, get illegals to self-deport

Arizona, led by state representative Russell Pearce, is following closely on the heels of Oklahoma, as both states take immigration enforcement into their own hands:
A new Arizona state law to require employers to verify the immigration status of employees is being blamed – and credited – for chasing illegal aliens out of the

It's the second such development in just the last week: WND reported earlier how a new Oklahoma law requiring the deportation of arrested illegal aliens was prompting an exodus from that state.
Further, the laws make the harboring of an illegal immigrant a felony. Understandably, the numbers of illegal migrants leaving the two states in anticipation of the laws, which go into effect in November (Oklahoma) and January (Arizona). Whatever the exact numbers, they're not negligible:

Business owner Simon Navarro has been in business there 11 years, and said the tough law has chased away 30 percent of the state's Hispanic population.

"Two months [in July] ago I heard 25,000 Hispanics have left Oklahoma [the bill first passed the state's House on March 1]," he told the station. "They are leaving. A lot have already left.
If accurate, that comes to about 200 people per day. In Arizona, estimates in the same ballpark are being made:

"I would say we are losing at least 100 people a day," Elias Bermudez, founder of Immigrants Without Borders and host of a daily talk-radio program aimed at undocumented immigrants, told the newspaper.

These laws do not allow for either of the states to deport aliens on their own. That is solely the prerogative of the Federal government, an unenthusiastic ally. Further, the laws do not go into effect for months. Yet illegal immigrants are leaving in significant numbers, many heading back to Mexico. This exposes the false argument that we cannot deport all of those already here. Tautologically true, I suppose, but only because most of them will leave of their own volition before anyone from ICE can get around to making them do so.

To the extent that non-emotive arguments are made in favor of open borders, they tend to focus almost exclusively on the putative economic loss immigration restriction would cause. But because immigrants, especially the largely unskilled illegal immigrant population, earn substantially less than natives, total economic output is focused on, rather than per capita output:
The newspaper said a study released in July forecast economic output would drop annually by at least $29 billion, or 8.2 percent, if all non-citizens, which include illegal aliens, were removed from Arizona's workforce.

An estimated 14 percent of the 2.6 million workers in Arizona are foreign-born; about two-thirds of non-citizens are undocumented, officials said.
That is what is being trumpeted in opposition to the Arizona law. So the total economic pie shrinks 8.2%, while the number of people sharing the pie shrinks 14%. That means per capita economic activity increases by almost 7%. Poverty leaves, as do many of the problems it entails. The standard of living rises, and the Arizona economy becomes less third-worldly.

But total output decreases! Following this line of reasoning, the next logical step is to annex Mexico, thereby increasing the size of the US economy by 9% in one fell swoop! That's the ticket, keeping in mind that Bangladesh is an order of magnitude wealthier than Luxembourg!


adog said...

They are here because we encourage them to be here. It is as simple as that.

Audacious Epigone said...

Because we allow them to be, yes.

That 8.2% to 14% figure is even less favorable to those opposed to the measure than I had insinuated, since both include the contribution of legal immigrants, who economically and educationally outperform illegals. The per capita bump would likely be even higher than 7%.