Steven Camarota, one of the nation’s leading experts on immigration and Director of Research at the Center for Immigration Studies, today published a devastating rebuttal to a recent pro-immigration article by two “conservative” alienists. Lee Habeeb and Mike Leven had argued that mass immigration of both low- and high-skilled aliens would: slow down the aging of the U.S., solve an alleged shortage of workers, that immigrants make little use of welfare programs, that immigrants are better entrepreneurs than Americans, etc. In short, immigrants, and lots of them, could work miracles – probably even cure the common cold.
Alas, there is no free lunch. Camarota debunks all of the myths and wishful thinking of Habeeb and Leven with detailed statistics from scholarly studies and Census Bureau reports. Fact: immigration does not slow the aging of the U.S. or increase the percentage of the population that is of working age. Fact: our problem is not a shortage of workers, but rather a shortage of jobs. Today there are 17 million more working-age Americans who are not working than there were in 2000. Fact: 57% of immigrant households with children use at least one major welfare program, such as food stamps and Medicaid, a substantially higher rate than for Americans with children. Fact: there is no shortage of STEM workers, wages in science and engineering fields have been stagnant for over a decade – a decade in which foreigners have flooded into those fields of work. Fact: Immigrants are no more likely to start successful businesses than Americans. A laughable example in the statistics misused by Habeeb and Leven, is saying that immigrants or their descendants “founded 40% of today’s Fortune 500 companies.” That includes DuPont, founded in 1802!
Camarota’s excellent article, “Immigration Exaggeration,” is must reading.
Posted by Lewis Hubbard 4/30/14