Thursday, March 24, 2016

Mass Immigration is the Last Fraud of Neoliberalism

And Dean Baker, a man who is clearly not a conservative but left-wing, explains why in his very interesting book The Conservative Nanny State (2006) and in the US context:
“Trade is not the only mechanism that nanny state conservatives have used to depress the wages of the bulk of the population. Immigration has also been an important tool to depress the wages of a substantial segment of the workforce. The principle with immigration is exactly the same as with trade. It takes advantage of the billions of workers in developing countries who are willing to work at substantially lower wages than workers in the United States to drive down the wages in a wide range of occupations.

The conservative nanny state folklore on immigration is that immigrants take jobs that workers in the United States do not want, and they point to jobs like custodians, dishwashers, and fruit picking, all very low paying jobs. The problem with the folklore is that the reason that native born workers are unlikely to want these jobs is that they are low-paying, not because they are intrinsically such awful jobs. Native-born workers have been willing to take many unpleasant jobs when they were compensated with high wages. Meatpacking is an obvious example of an industry that did offer relatively high-paying jobs that were widely sought after by native-born workers, even though no one would be very happy to work in a slaughterhouse. This is less true today than in the past, because the meatpacking industry has taken advantage of the availability of immigrant workers to depress wages and working conditions in the industry. As a result, immigrant workers are now a very large share of the workforce in the meatpacking industry.

The same sort of situation holds in all of the jobs that native born workers supposedly do not want. Native-born workers will wash dishes, clean toilets, and pick tomatoes for $20 an hour. When the nanny state conservatives say that they can’t find native-born workers for these jobs, they mean that they can’t find native-born workers at the wages that they want to pay, just as most of us can't find native-born doctors or lawyers who are willing to work for $15 an hour. The difference is that the nanny state conservatives get to bring in immigrants at low wages to meet their needs, whereas the doctors and lawyers can count on the nanny state to protect them from competition with immigrant workers.” (Baker 2006: 23–24).
The reason that professionals and middle class people – say, doctors or university lecturers – can generally stave off such competition is that they tend to have effective trade unions or lobbies that defend them (Baker 2006: 24), but our unskilled and low-skilled workers often cannot.

Even worse, increasingly not even higher-skilled US workers can totally avoid such competition because of notorious special pro-big business visa programs like, say, the H1-B program (Baker 2006: 25).

And also let me be clear: this has got nothing to do with people’s skin colour. This is about good economic theory and good economic policy. Also note well: we are talking here about unending *mass* immigration, not immigration per se. We are not talking about, say, limited immigration of skilled people in an economy at full employment and suffering genuine labour shortages, where the economic argument for controlled immigration of the necessary labour would have good arguments in its favour.

Quite simply: mass immigration is the last fraud of Neoliberalism. And it is the “last fraud” because many people on the left simply can’t see it for what it is: a devastating part of the neoliberal program that has been ongoing for the past 36 years or so.

The left is largely blind to how its economic, social, political, and cultural consequences are devastating, because so much of the left is in thrall to a misguided and extreme multiculturalism that has come right out of Postmodernism. It is so surprising that many more people on the left – particularly in the heterodox economics blogosphere – don’t see the truth here. Or perhaps they do but are too frightened to say it for fear of being slandered with nasty words.

And it is not as though there isn’t good heterodox literature on this and the benefits of labour market protectionism for us in the developed world: there is good analysis by Ha-Joon Chang in his book 23 Things they Don’t Tell you about Capitalism (Bloomsbury Press, London, 2011), p. 23ff.

This negative view of mass immigration on the left isn’t even new either: in the past the radical Marxist and socialist left in America was vehemently opposed to mass immigration because of its harmful effects on domestic workers. You can probably find precedents for this in the writings of Marx himself, and certainly in Chapter 20 of volume 1 of Capital Marx notes that foreigners can be exploited for very low wages that undermine wages for native workers (Marx 1990: 690). Moreover, we do not need Marxism to justify this view anyway, and Post Keynesianism and left non-Marxist heterodox economics generally can provide good arguments against open borders and mass immigration on economic grounds.

At any rate, the left should not stay silent about the obvious link between neoliberalism and mass immigration, because (1) the issue is obviously of concern to ordinary people and (2) if the left doesn’t get a grip on the issue the only people who will talk about it are the right.

In the context of, say, British politics, the idiosyncratic conservative Peter Hitchens often raises this issue, as in the video below, although he concentrates on cultural and social issues related to it.



That is why Hitchens – a former Marxist and clever speaker – uses the rhetoric of Marxism to attack the bourgeois, pro-business, pro-open borders elites of the neoliberal Tory and New Labour parties. From the surging support for UKIP in Britain and the results of other opinion polls against open borders, it appears opinions like this resonate with more and more people.

The left has a choice: are you going to leave the issue to Hitchens or Trump? And perhaps even people much worse than them?

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Baker, Dean. 2006. The Conservative Nanny State: How the Wealthy use the Government to Stay Rich and Get Richer. Center for Economic and Policy Research, Washington, DC.
http://deanbaker.net/images/stories/documents/cnswebbook.pdf

Chang, Ha-Joon. 2011. 23 Things they Don’t Tell you about Capitalism. Bloomsbury Press, London.

Marx, Karl. 1990. Capital. A Critique of Political Economy. Volume One (trans. Ben Fowkes). Penguin Books, London.

42 comments:

  1. LK,

    please read this, it's very relevant to this issue and to what we were discussing before:

    https://critiqueofcrisistheory.wordpress.com/responses-to-readers-austrian-economics-versus-marxism/financialization-and-marx-—-pt-1-do-skilled-workers-own-human-capital/pt-2-can-the-capitalists-share-surplus-value-with-the-working-class/

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  2. Yes, LK, obviously true.

    The left is desperately corrupt. In reality, the dominant ideology is dictated by middle-class tech workers and destroys any sort of national solidarity.

    Here's my point though:

    (a) The left are unlikely to change it. The right will.

    (b) Foucault and his historiography have little to do with it.

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    Replies
    1. "(b) Foucault and his historiography have little to do with it."

      Yes, you are correct. And for the record: I don't blame Foucault for this.

      "(a) The left are unlikely to change it. The right will."

      You may be right there too. In Europe that is likely to mean mainstream conservatives becoming more like the Alternative for Germany (AfD), the Sweden Democrats, the Danish People’s Party, the Dutch Party for Freedom (PVV), the Freedom Party in Austria, the French National Front, and UKIP -- or those parties actually getting into power in coalition governments.

      The trouble is a lot of those parties have crazed Thatcherite or libertarian streaks.

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    2. To clarify my agreement. I am of course a Thatcherite. You are an interesting case LK, right on so much yet when it comes to economics you come out with things like "quick kill that goose before it lays any more golden eggs."

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    3. Hmm.... Thatcherism already did that, Ken B:

      (1) It smashed British manufacturing by its incompetent mismanagement of the sterling exchange rate at a time when the UK was suffering from the Dutch disease.

      This made British manufacturing uncompetitive by causing the sterling exchange rate to soar (exacerbating a problem the UK already had from the commodity boom in North sea oil, a version of the Dutch disease).

      (2) her experiment with monetarism in a particularly lunatic form caused a catastrophic recession in the UK:

      http://socialdemocracy21stcentury.blogspot.com/2013/08/monetarists-fail-history-101-time-and.html

      Then after the disaster Thatcher essentially abandoned her version of monetarism in 1981.

      (3) following from (2), she caused the worst unemployment rate in the UK since the 1930s:

      http://socialdemocracy21stcentury.blogspot.com/2013/04/thatchers-passing.html

      (4) Thatcher’s financial deregulation – e.g., the Big Bang (1986) program – contributed to the so-called Lawson boom (1986–1988), at the centre of which was a disastrous debt-financed property bubble.

      http://socialdemocracy21stcentury.blogspot.com/2014/05/the-price-of-asset-bubbles-in-housing.html
      ------
      So, Ken B, unless if you want to see more and more of those things in the US or the West to devastate our economies, you shouldn't be in favour of Thatcherism.

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    4. Also, as in the case of the Austrians, explain why the Keynesian era was the most stable and best era of capitalism we ever had.

      E.g., have a look at the unemployment rate in the UK from 1946 to 1973 under Keynesianism:

      http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-ZFRcCxs6PR4/UWMmtn5J0nI/AAAAAAAAAHY/Ewmj1eJRD80/s1600/UKunemployment19461999.jpg

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    5. A very one-sided view of the Thatcher legacy. According to Geoffrey Owen, a leading historian of British Industry following WW2, Thatcher's policies forced British manufacturing companies to compete without government subsidies or cheap credit. The good ones adapted and prospered, the poor ones went bust. The high exchange rate killed off companies that were not internationally competitive.

      Some discussion of this here in a Financial Times article:

      https://next.ft.com/content/959ebdda-a2cf-11e2-bd45-00144feabdc0

      More detailed information provided in Professor Owen's book 'From Empire to Europe: The Decline and Revival of British Industry since the Second World War'.

      http://www.amazon.co.uk/From-Empire-Europe-Decline-Industry/dp/0006387500

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    6. Let us examine your claims one by one:

      (1) “Thatcher's policies forced British manufacturing companies to compete without government subsidies or cheap credit. The good ones adapted and prospered, the poor ones went bust.”

      Given that virtually every successful manufacturing nation you care to name implements anti-market interventions to help their industries, this is of course tantamount to saying that the stupid woman Thatcher stripped British industry of (most probably) sensible government supports in a world where virtually all industries get government support, and caused them to compete in an unfair playing field, leading inevitably to some failing, for no particularly good reason. Germany, for example, Europe’s manufacturing power house, has had massive government support for its industries since the 19th century, e.g., Germany had subsidies for its coal industries for much of the 20 century. see Wilfried Feldenkirchen, “Germany: The Invention of Interventionism,” in J. Foreman-Peck and G. Federico (eds), European Industrial Policy (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999), pp. 98-123.

      Underlying your judgement here is the same neoclassical/Austrian nonsense: that the real world confirms to the magical, imaginary laissez faire world where governments aren’t significantly involved in markets.

      (2) “The high exchange rate killed off companies that were not internationally competitive.”

      And why weren’t they “internationally competitive” by 1979/80? It’s not because they were necessarily less productive or capable of competing; rather, a great deal of the reason lies with the grossly overvalued pound in the late 1970s.

      Much of British industry was struggling under the effects of the so-called “Dutch disease” malaise: an overvalued pound sterling from the commodity boom in North sea oil. Australia recently suffered from this in the last few years.

      If the UK had fixed that overvalued sterling, industry would have been far more competitive.

      Again, I imagine the only real response that apologists for Thatcher have here is fall back on ridiculous market theology: the belief that the overvalued pound was some inevitable or unavoidable natural outcome of the godlike holy market. This is just B.S.

      If your nation has some lucrative commodity export (like oil or minerals) that attracts lots of foreign capital (via the capital account) to your real or financial asset markets, driving your exchange rate too high, and crippling your other manufacturing/export industries, then any rational person can see that this **requires remedial foreign exchange rate interventions.** Otherwise your export sector goes to the wall.

      Also, if you really think that governments should never interfere with the holy market in the foreign exchange rate markets, then why would you trade with China? China has been the biggest currency manipulator in human history. Why would you trade with nation that rigs its trade? Why would let your industries compete in an unfair playing field?

      (3) finally what the West needs right now is an aggressive industrial policy, for the simple reason that China has an aggressive mercantilist industrial policy. If we played the loony free trade game, we'd be slaughtered even more than we are now.

      This is another reason why neoliberalism and pro-free trade insanity is a threat to our civilisation: our incompetent, spineless, delusional leaders would let other nations deindustrialise the West in the way that the West deindustrialised much of the Third world in the 19th century.

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    7. And I'll just add: many of our ancestors in the 19th century were so much smarter than our politicians and economists are today on the free trade issue.

      Why? Because outside of a few limited nations, free trade was a killer of infant industries. A lot of the 19th century conservatives understood this very well. Free trade theology was rejected by Georg Friedrich List, the “American School” economists like Alexander Hamilton or Henry Carey, and the German Historical School, which predominated in the US and Germany.

      The US was one of the most protectionist nations in the 19th century. Also, by 1900, it was the largest economy in the world. You should reflect on why that was:

      http://socialdemocracy21stcentury.blogspot.com/2014/06/protectionism-and-us-economic-history.html

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    8. One of the things you ignore is the impressive and sustained reduction of poverty in the third world. (We Thatcherites care about such things.) you ignore that Britain was the sick man of Europe circa 1975.
      Of course this time this anonymous is right.

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    9. Interstate tariffs ? No, one huge free trade zone, right?

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    10. "Interstate tariffs ? No, one huge free trade zone, right? "

      And within the **same** nation, which is ruled by the **same** government that imposes the **same** fiscal, monetary or regulatory policies, and the **same** labour market regulations and the *same* environmental standards, and where there is centralised wealth redistribution.

      This doesn't refute what I said, Ken B, if anything it underlines it.

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    11. "One of the things you ignore is the impressive and sustained reduction of poverty in the third world."

      There was very impressive per capita GDP growth in the Keynesian era in the Third world from the 1945 to 1970s without the extreme and deleterious free trade model imposed on the West since the 1980s. It is well known that growth for most Third world countries slowed after the 1980s.

      The most successful region of the Third/second world where development happened and there was massive succuss: the state-directed, protectionist, industrial policy models of development in South Korea, Taiwan, Japan.

      Also, you must distinguish between managed trade (often very good) with FDI and free trade (often not good). You can have more and more managed trade with protectionism. There is no contradiction here.

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    12. "you ignore that Britain was the sick man of Europe circa 1975. "

      This is mostly a myth. In what respect was it a sick man?:

      (1) the Dutch disease? I've already explained this and what the solution was.

      (2) stagflation? This was a world wide phenomenon and after 1973 driven by the oil shocks. There wasn't anything uniquely British about that.

      (3) wage price-spirals during the oil shocks? Yes, but once again this was a world wide phenomenon, and monetarism wasn't the answer.

      (4) was there excessive union power? Yes, but this could have been dealt with without all the neoliberalism insanity of Thatcherism.

      (5) was there high unemployment? Actually not that bad at all, and nothing like the catastrophic unemployment under Thatcher.

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    13. Also, assuming you accept some of the economic arguments for labour market protectionism and curbing mass immigration, can't you see how militantly rejecting the benefits of trade protectionism is a bizarre contraction?

      You accept the possible benefits of labour market protectionism, but not trade protectionism?

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    14. Typo:

      "bizarre contradiction?"

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    15. The 'infant industry argument' can't possibly apply to British industry post WW2, although it's true to say that government support wasn't always a bad thing (e.g. in defence and aerospace).

      However, the missing element of your analysis of the pre-Thatcher economy is quality. Quality of goods and services, quality of infrastructure, quality of housing stock. If you focus only on GDP figures, you might come to the conclusion that the Soviet Union outperformed the West during 'the golden age of capitalism'.

      I know people who lived through the 70s and 80s, and they have confirmed that the quality of consumer goods and many services improved markedly during the Thatcher era.

      Another aspect of Thatcherism was a welcoming environment for world class foreign companies that were thinking of investing in the UK, such as Nissan. Do you think that was a bad thing too?

      Of course there were great social costs such as high unemployment and a higher crime rate, but the UK economy was in much better shape in the 1990s than in the 1970s.

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    16. (1) I did not say that the "infant industry argument" applied to British industry post WW2. This is just a straw man.

      As it happens, however, the UK needed and did impose massive tariffs to build its cotton textile industry in the late 18th and 19th centuries.

      (2) as for quality of goods, I'm not saying that isn't important. This is just another stupid straw man.

      While I've not looked into this issue in detail, I would be very surprised indeed if this much of an issue in the 1970s. And, if we are on this issue, why is a flood of cheap inferior crap from China any better?

      (3) "Another aspect of Thatcherism was a welcoming environment for world class foreign companies that were thinking of investing in the UK, such as Nissan. Do you think that was a bad thing too?"

      The UK could have had more FDI with subsidies or tax breaks without Thatcher's lunatic monetarism, her recessions, her high unemployment, her destruction of British industry, her destruction of the coal industry, etc. etc.

      (4) "but the UK economy was in much better shape in the 1990s than in the 1970s."

      hahaha.. "in much better shape". After massive economic and social destruction?

      You sound like an unrepentant Thatcherite ideologue to me.

      Look at you. I've given you in my original comments above good evidence of the devastating effect of Thatcherism. But you will defend it at any cost. This is a fanatical, irrational, reflexive ideology at work.

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    17. "While I've not looked into this issue in detail, I would be very surprised indeed if this much of an issue in the 1970s. And, if we are on this issue, why is a flood of cheap inferior crap from China any better?"

      A good example is that motor vehicles produced by British Leyland in the 1970s were of lower quality the competition from Japan and Germany. A success story of the 1980s was the de-merger and privatisation of Jaguar Cars from British Leyland, which developed new models that were well regarded and competitive the market.

      I think Apple i-phones are manufactured in China, so your 'flood of cheap crap' may not be wholly accurate. Not that consumers shouldn't buy cheaper goods of inferior quality if they wish, as long as they can choose freely.

      "You sound like an unrepentant Thatcherite ideologue to me. "

      Don't be silly, there are many in the political centre who accept the Thatcher years enabled necessary supply-side reforms that improved the competitiveness of British industry, albeit at considerable social cost. This is a fairly mainstream opinion among UK economists and political commentators.

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    18. (1) "A good example is that motor vehicles produced by British Leyland in the 1970s were of lower quality the competition from Japan and Germany."

      In terms of the difference here, it sounds grossly exaggerated to me. Moreover, none of the destructive Thatcherite program was necessary to address the issue of making British industry build better quality cars.

      (2) "I think Apple i-phones are manufactured in China, so your 'flood of cheap crap' may not be wholly accurate."

      My statement does not contradict the additional assertion that we also get well made stuff from China. What I said is we get a lot of cheap inferior crap. This is correct.

      (3) "Thatcher years enabled necessary supply-side reforms that improved the competitiveness of British industry, "

      And this is outrageously wrong. You quite clearly cannot fathom that alternative policies to help or modernise industries could have been done without Thatcherism.

      In fact your reference to goods imported from Japan (to which we can add South Korea and Taiwan) underscores the outrageous ignorance of people like and how you live in an ideological bubble. Tell me: how did Japan, South Korea and Taiwan industrialise and get world beating industries?

      If you'd care to get out of your ideological bubble, you know it happened by massive state intervention and industrial policy, not by holy free trade/free market market theological nonsense. Nor is this observation anti-capitalist because our real world capitalism and its success is heavily bound up with the state.

      Start with these books:

      Johnson, Chalmers. 1982. MITI and the Japanese Miracle: The Growth of Industrial Policy, 1925-1975. Stanford University Press, Stanford, Calif.

      Erik S. Reinert. 2007. How Rich Countries Got Rich, and Why Poor Countries Stay Poor. Carroll & Graf, New York.

      -----
      A final observation: you people think you are the defenders of capitalism, but you are not.

      If you had your way, you'd smash up our effective real world capitalism and destroy Western civilisation. If you had had your way in 2008, and imposed massive austerity, the world would have been plunged into a great depression worse than the 1930s. We'd be on the road to far left dictatorship or fascism, as in the 1930s, because you people don't understand capitalism or basic economic theory, and you'd cock everything up.

      The greatest defender of capitalism in the 20th century was John Maynard Keynes. Any rational and competent defender of capitalism would know this.

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    19. LK, as I have said often your economic arguments against mass immigration are pretty weak. It's social , cultural and political arguments that are stronger. Plus of course there is a huge incentive to immigrate to a welfare state that exceeds the wage incentives of the market.
      You can have 2 of democracy, welfare state, mass immigration. That's a political argument.

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    20. LK even your own points about 19th century US are not about efficiency of resource allocation. They are social and political points.

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    21. "LK, as I have said often your economic arguments against mass immigration are pretty weak. It's social , cultural and political arguments that are stronger."

      No, Ken B, they would apply very strongly to a libertarian, Misesian or classical liberal economy with no welfare state, if it had higher wages and high per capita GDP, since there would be severe race to the bottom as noted (and celebrated) by Rothbard.

      In fact, in such a world it would be brutal for domestic citizens who could be very easily replaced with foreign workers.

      Are we to assume that you would be fine with this?:

      [Ken B arrives at work]
      Ken B's boss: "Hi Ken!, How are you?"
      Ken B: "Great! Looking forward to another day of work!"
      Ken B's boss: "Great!.... Oh, by the way, you're fired. We're replacing you with an immigrant who will work for $3 an hour.
      Ken B: "Awesome! I'll clean my desk out right now!"
      [Ken B heads to the poor house.]

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    22. "LK even your own points about 19th century US are not about efficiency of resource allocation"

      No, Ken B. In the long run, devoting resources to manufacturing and paying somewhat more for such goods in the short term pays off in a very big way in the long run. This is precisely about long-run efficiency of resource allocation.

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    23. Of course, if your aim in economic development is not to maximise per capita GDP or real wages and increase the per capita wealth of a country but to just keep wages low, then economically speaking you may be in favour of mass immigration or open borders.

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  3. Also, the geographical area of the migrant workers spending may be different to the geographical area of the migrant workers earning , and the price levels in the two areas may be different and so the remuneration level of the migrant worker may not be directly comparable with the remuneration level of the domestic workers.

    This subject of migration of workers was discussed a lot by "Jimmy" James Golsdmith in 1994.

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  4. Good morning LK,
    I think you are right on that point too. And I would be glad if more leftwings fellows were to understand the point you are making.
    In order to achieve this, I think we must try to understand why it is so hard for them to get that point, just like a teacher needs to understand what prevents a pupil to get say a theorem.
    Your conjectured explanation if I got it right is that "postmodernism" (= derrida and co?) and "multiculturalism" (= ??) did obscure issues like immigration.
    I think you are wrong on that point. It seems unlikely that thousands of activists and / or millions of voters for the left (including actually right wing politicians claiming that name like Brown in UK and Hollande in France) did read those hardly readable things or, prodvided they read some of it, gave them so much credit and changed their worldview accordingly.
    I think in most cases the underlying error is the following fallacy :
    (a) Far right people want to end mass immigration
    (b) Far right people do so for to a large extent for very bad, irrationnal reasons (hatred, prejudice and so on)
    ergo : A decent rational human being should support open borders
    It is obviously a fallacy since the fact that many people do support some policy for really bad "reasons" does not imply that there are no good reason to implement it.
    Another piece of explanation might be the lack of a both decent and realistic way to stop immigrants. On that point I am quite clueless to what extent are we entitled to use force against those people and if need be even lethal force ?
    (for desperate people won't stay home only because some officials of ours told them so...)
    A third and to some point sound reason why people on the (real) left tend to be "shy" on that issue is that they prefer to insist on macroeconomic issues and fear that blaming immigration for low wages might divert people's awareness from macro issues like rising inequalities and turn their legitimate anger against defenseless immigrants instead of the outrageously rich.
    And last but not least there are less and less blue collars in the left wing organisations.. but I cant tell if tis cause of consequence.

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  5. A typically left-wing response would be that we can have both mass migration and high wages/good working conditions if we can maintain high minimum wages and collective bargaining. That means: when we have a strong labor movement.

    The problem with this argument is that it will create an enormous underclass of unemployed foreigners as we can see in for example France, Belgium or Sweden.

    The argument has one merit: mass migration does not necessarily drive down wages. That happens when mass migration is combined with an already weak labor movement.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, and the underclass tends to be on welfare and live in segregated unassimilated communities. This is a terrible outcome and serious problem.

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    2. Indeed. I have seen libertarians, not Murphy s crew but serious ones like David Henderson, argue that ghettos are a good solution to problems with integration!

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  6. Holy cow. The Illusionist, LK, and I agree. Must be a record.

    The right may change quickly in the US, if a Trump win in the Gop leads to a schism candidate and a Hillary win. A not unlikely scenario.

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    1. We are at a massive political turning point in 2016 in the US and possibly even in the EU if there is a UK vote in favour of Brexit.

      A Trump victory in the election will, if he means what he says on trade, be a massive turn to GOP protectionism and he might well tear up the current international trade regime. The real question is: what will his fiscal policy be?

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  7. "The reason that professionals and middle class people – say, doctors or university lecturers – can generally stave off such competition is that they tend to have effective trade unions or lobbies that defend them"

    Yikes, pretty much the only two groups that lose from immigration are the highly educated and those without a high school degree. There are so many compelling reasons to let immigrants in, unless there is a cheaper and more humane option that letting people come to developed countries to earn much more money than they would at home, there really isn't much to your argument.

    http://econfaculty.gmu.edu/bcaplan/pdfs/whyimmigration.pdf

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    Replies
    1. "There are so many compelling reasons to let immigrants in, "

      No, there is not. The case for mass immigration when unemployment is high and wages stagnating is virtually non-existent.

      Not to mention that if you take highly skilled workers you are taking them and brain draining the Third world.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYnQjDlCeXU

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    2. "No, there is not. The case for mass immigration when unemployment is high and wages stagnating is virtually non-existent.

      Not to mention that if you take highly skilled workers you are taking them and brain draining the Third world."

      1. You are forgetting that these people are human. By saying this, the implications for these workers is poverty or worse.

      2. This completely ignores the fact that on net, we gain from immigration.

      3. Immigrants are currently living in areas where they are not even currently capable of producing much of anything. Moving them to areas where they can be productive makes the world better off.

      4. There really isn't much brain drain going on in the first place. As previously stated, keeping these human beings in their home countries makes them less productive, and makes the world worse off.

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    3. Just tell me this Avery:

      Is there any limit to the mass immigration you'd like to see? If you brought 1 million, 10 million or 100 million people to the UK in 2016 would you see any severe problems with this?

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    4. Avrey actually this people can help their economies if their government will use infant industry substitution and healthy fiscal policy.

      The arguement of productivity arise in highly specialized advanced economies which is not the case with third world ubderveloped evonomies

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    5. "Is there any limit to the mass immigration you'd like to see? If you brought 1 million, 10 million or 100 million people to the UK in 2016 would you see any severe problems with this?"

      I think you'd see many more people come into the UK. Fortunately, prices ration resources, so you'd see natural regulation in how fast people move and where they move.

      "Avrey actually this people can help their economies if their government will use infant industry substitution and healthy fiscal policy.

      The arguement of productivity arise in highly specialized advanced economies which is not the case with third world ubderveloped evonomies"

      Infant industry substitution is not a thing, there's the infant industry argument, and the import substitution industrialization, both of which are ridiculous.

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    6. ridiculous?

      that's why its been successful in U.S Germany japan South Korea Taiwan Singapore?

      that's why this so called Asian tigers been able to become prosperous first world countries while other countries which listened to austerity fan boys from imf ruined their economies?

      your neoclassical ridiculous assumption don't working in the real world sorry.

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  8. Do you have any posts on reviewing the existing literature on the effects of migration on unemployment, wages, etc?

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  9. Excellent article. One effect of mass immigration, rarely commented on, is the effect of 'cheap' labour on innovation. It stands to reason that if cheap labour is available, manufacturers (and indeed, even farmers) will not invest in new technology to raise productivity. it could well be that this goes some way to explaining the slow pace of technological development (aside from IT) over the past 30 years.

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