Woe is America. In the past 10 years we’ve experienced two recessions, an overall loss of 1 million jobs – and an influx of 13.1 million legal and illegal aliens streaming across the borders.
Somehow the math is not working here.
Take the United States back to the 1990s, which came with an overall growth of 21 million new jobs – yet an influx of fewer immigrants, at 12.1 million.
The verdict? Just because the country dries up, sours up and seems to have lost that shimmying sheen of the American Dream, people keep on coming.
These fun facts – and more – are in a report from the Center for Immigration Studies, which analyzed data from the Census Bureau’s March Current Population Survey.
Yes, we know. Pro-immigration folks are none too fond of the Center for Immigration Studies, calling it slanted and anti-human rights for illegal aliens.
Let’s continue anyway.
Census results are not yet available, but the Current Population Survey, also known as the Annual Social and Economic Supplement, gives us a glimpse into population trends.
The big immigration trend continues, the Center argues, because immigration is not based solely on job availability.
This does not mean the economy is irrelevant to immigration levels, the report notes. Rather it means that many factors in addition to the economy impact the flow new immigrants into the country.
Such factors as the desire to be with relatives, political freedom, lower levels of official corruption, and the generosity of American taxpayer-funded public services are all among the reasons people come to the United States.
These things do not change during a recession or even during a prolonged period of relatively weak economic growth, like the decade just completed.
Other fascinating findings from the study include:
– Among the states with the largest proportional increase in their immigrant populations over the last decade are Tennessee, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Kentucky, Alaska, Mississippi, Arkansas, Washington, North Carolina, Maryland, and Nebraska.
– In 2008 and 2009, 2.4 million new immigrants (legal and illegal) settled in the United States, even though 8.2 million jobs were lost over the same period.
– The new data indicate that, without a change in U.S. immigration policy, the level of new immigration can remain high even in the face of massive job losses.
Not looking good for the math ever working here.
Some may immediately go on the defense, saying the numbers are all wrong and to look at 43 other studies from 62 other agencies that go and prove immigration is down or job loss never reached an overall 1 million or that Tennessee really did not experience a large proportional increase in immigrants.
Others may continue the crusade that immigration to America is a basic human right, regardless if its done through the proper channels or not and regardless of its impact on current U.S. citizens.
But no matter how much arguing is done until we’re all blue in the face, one solid observation remains the same – Woe is America.
Note on terminology: In its report, the Center for Immigration Studies uses the term “immigrant” to mean all persons living in this country who were not U.S. citizens at birth.
What do you think?
Has the past decade been woeful or joyful for you?
Have you lost a job due to the recession?
Have you found yourself in the process?