Alan Greenspan saying that illegal immigration aids the US economy, because he’s wrong about everything:
Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said that illegal immigration makes a “significant” contribution to U.S. economic growth by providing a flexible workforce. Greenspan, appearing before a Senate subcommittee today, said illegal immigrants provide a “safety valve” as demand for workers rises and falls.
On a more serious note, look at what he is saying when you tease out the meaning, he is saying that illegal immigration is good because it drives down wages…..That’s what “flexible workforce” and “safety valve,” mean.
Alan Greenspan has always been a big fan of cheap labor.
There is no doubt that illegal immigration adds to GDP. The question is whether it contributes to per capita GDP, or the slightly more nebulous and hard to measure concept of the well being of our society.
½ of Europe’s population died during the heyday of the Black Death, and it is indisputable that the GDP of Europe was lower in the years following the Bubonic Plague outbreak than before.
What is also indisputable is that the standard of living of those remaining rose at the time, as can be seen through records of increased wages, and the frantic passage of (largely ineffective) laws intended to reign in wages and reduce worker mobility.
The end question is not what our immigration policy should be, but rather what should our society look like, and how to we create an immigration policy most consistent with our professed values that creates this society.
To my mind, this is best addressed by extremely aggressive laws targeting employers who deliberately or negligently hire illegals, and not by harsh measures taken against desperate economic refugees.