Sunday, March 08, 2009

Immigration and Infrastructure

The American Society of Civil Engineers estimates that $1.6 trillion dollars is needed to repair and maintain U.S. infrastructure in the next 5 years.

As with virtually every social problem immigration is a huge and unmentioned component of the problem. According to Ed Rubenstein, immigration will be responsible for more than 80 percent of the spending needed to expand infrastructure capability between now and 2050. The massive influx of immigrants is burdening America's crumbling infrastructure--airports, roads, bridges, sewer systems, etc.

You won't see this reported in the NY Times or your local "newspaper" so check out the report here.

3 Comments:

Blogger Pete Murphy said...

Rampant population growth threatens our economy and quality of life. Immigration, both legal and illegal, are fueling this growth.

I'm not talking just about the obvious environmental and resource issues. I'm talking about the effect upon rising unemployment and poverty in America.

I should introduce myself. I am the author of a book titled "Five Short Blasts: A New Economic Theory Exposes The Fatal Flaw in Globalization and Its Consequences for America." To make a long story short, my theory is that, as population density rises beyond some optimum level, per capita consumption of products begins to decline out of the need to conserve space. People who live in crowded conditions simply don’t have enough space to use and store many products. This declining per capita consumption, in the face of rising productivity (per capita output, which always rises), inevitably yields rising unemployment and poverty.

This theory has huge implications for U.S. policy toward population management, especially immigration policy. Our policies of encouraging high rates of immigration are rooted in the belief of economists that population growth is a good thing, fueling economic growth. Through most of human history, the interests of the common good and business (corporations) were both well-served by continuing population growth. For the common good, we needed more workers to man our factories, producing the goods needed for a high standard of living. This population growth translated into sales volume growth for corporations. Both were happy.

But, once an optimum population density is breached, their interests diverge. It is in the best interest of the common good to stabilize the population, avoiding an erosion of our quality of life through high unemployment and poverty. However, it is still in the interest of corporations to fuel population growth because, even though per capita consumption goes into decline, total consumption still increases. We now find ourselves in the position of having corporations and economists influencing public policy in a direction that is not in the best interest of the common good.

The U.N. ranks the U.S. with eight third world countries - India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Bangladesh, Uganda, Ethiopia and China - as accounting for fully half of the world’s population growth by 2050. It's absolutely imperative that our population be stabilized, and that's impossible without dramatically reining in immigration, both legal and illegal.

If you’re interested in learning more about this important new economic theory, I invite you to visit my web site at OpenWindowPublishingCo.com where you can read the preface, join in my blog discussion and, of course, purchase the book if you like. (It's also available at Amazon.com.)

Please forgive the somewhat spammish nature of the previous paragraph. I just don't know how else to inject this new perspective into the immigration debate without drawing attention to the book that explains the theory.

Pete Murphy
Author, "Five Short Blasts"

9:16 AM  
Blogger La Claudia said...

How is it that 15 percent of the population can account for 80 percent of the needed infrastructure? Your logic is faulty at best and downright pathetic at worst.

10:31 PM  
Blogger Darrell said...

Claudia,

Consider a prison that can hold an inmate population of 2,000. Say it presently has 1,900 inmates and there is suddenly a 15% jump in the inmate population. The state is compelled to build a new prison.

Similarly a school has a limited number of seats. If it grows beyond capacity a new building is constructed.

It doesn't take much imagination to see how the rapid growth of immigrants AND their children could cause the effects that Rubenstien discusses.

8:13 PM  

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