Posted: 30 Oct 2010 11:01 PM PDT
Posted: 30 Oct 2010 04:34 PM PDT
How Immigrants Create More Jobs, by Tyler Cowen, Commentary, NY Times: In the campaign season now drawing to a close, immigration and globalization have often been described as economic threats. The truth, however, is more complex.
Over all, it turns out that the continuing arrival of immigrants ... is encouraging business activity here, thereby producing more jobs, according to a new study. Its authors argue that the easier it is to find cheap immigrant labor at home, the less likely that production will relocate offshore. ...
The study notes that when companies move production offshore, they pull away not only low-wage jobs but also many related jobs, which can include high-skilled managers, tech repairmen and others. But hiring immigrants even for low-wage jobs helps keep many kinds of jobs in the United States... In other words, immigrants may be competing more with offshored workers than with other laborers in America. ...
Debates on immigration and labor markets reflect some common human cognitive failings — namely, that we are quicker to vilify groups of different "others" than we are to blame impersonal forces.
Consider the fears that foreign competition, offshoring and immigration have destroyed large numbers of American jobs. In reality, more workers have probably been displaced by machines... Yet we know that machines and computers do the economy far more good than harm and that they create more jobs than they destroy.
Nonetheless, we find it hard to transfer this attitude to our dealings with immigrants, no matter how logically similar "cost-saving machines" and "cost-saving foreign labor" may be in their economic effects. ...
As a nation, we ... should be looking to immigration as a creative force in our economic favor. Allowing in more immigrants, skilled and unskilled, wouldn't just create jobs. It could increase tax revenue, help finance Social Security, bring new home buyers and improve the business environment.
The world economy will most likely grow more open, and we should be prepared to compete. That means recognizing the benefits — including the employment benefits — that immigrants bring to this country.
|You are subscribed to email updates from Economist's View |
To stop receiving these emails, you may unsubscribe now.
|Email delivery powered by Google|
|Google Inc., 20 West Kinzie, Chicago IL USA 60610|