Who Benefits From Immigration? Immigrants and Ruling Class Elites. Mass Immigration Is A Massive Wealth Transfer
Originally published at the American Remnant (2/25/2021)
President Biden has set in motion his plans to overwhelm legacy Americans with millions of Third World immigrants, and GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham seemed determined to help him by reintroducing the DREAM Act with Democrat colleague Dick Durbin. But even this quick rush to open the borders and hasten The Great Replacement wasn’t enough for leading evangelicals.
Russell Moore, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, praised Biden and urged him to act with greater speed, though Biden had already raised the refugee cap to 125,000. “Now is the time to rebuild America’s refugee resettlement program, and I appreciate these initial steps taken by President Biden,” wrote Moore. “I urge the administration to take the next step and officially raise the refugee ceiling.”
Using the rhetorical tropes that have replaced genuine debate and are designed to reconcile the Christian faith with leftist politics, Moore said DREAMers “are not an abstraction,” and are created in “the image of God” and are our “neighbors.”
A question for Moore and other leading evangelicals: Who is my neighbor and do I have 7 billion of them? Evangelical leaders seem to think so, but here’s a little news for them: Americans are not abstractions, either, and they are our neighbors, also created in the image of God. Mass immigration harms them culturally, politically, and of course, economically.
That latter is what concerns us here.
Failure To Understand
Moore’s remarks demonstrated a common problem among Christian social thinkers. They do not understand basic economics and fail to reckon with the fact of scarcity. The proper stewardship of creation must begin with the admission that resources are finite, a result of God’s curse on the earth due to Adam’s sin. Human beings necessarily choose among competing alternatives affecting resource distribution.
Consider the job market. For the unemployed, jobs are a resource for which they must compete. That means increasing the supply of labor through immigration has consequences. Immigrants not only displace American workers but also drive down wages.
The primary victims of unchecked immigration are less-educated, low-skilled Americans, native-born minorities, and convicts who have done their time. The disabled are also adversely affected. They are fellow citizens and neighbors, too, but all too many men like Moore will happily consign them to dog-eat-dog competition with foreigners, including those who have broken American law and have no ties to our land and people.
As well, mass immigration is, in fact, a scheme to redistribute wealth from labor to capital.
Writing in the Journal of Economic Perspectives in 1995, economist Geoge Borjas explained that immigration had increased aggregate economic activity by $2.1 trillion. But virtually all that gain — 98 percent — went to the immigrants. The “immigration surplus” or “gain” was the remaining 2 percent — about $50 billion. But that $50 billion disguised an extraordinary transfer of income and wealth: American capitalists gained $566 billion, while American workers lost $516 billion, a near penny-for-penny shift.
Borjas ran the numbers again in 2013 with similar results. Immigrant workers increased GDP by about 11 percent, or $1.6 trillion dollars per year. Of that $1.6 trillion, 97.8 percent went to the immigrants in wages and benefits. The remaining surplus was about $35 billion, a result of reduced wages for Americans by an estimated $402 billion a year. Profits for employers jumped about $437 billion.
Upshot is, immigration plays a surprisingly small role in creating prosperity for real Americans, and dramatically redistributes wealth from workers to owners of capital and users of immigrant services.
Thus, the primary beneficiaries of mass immigration are ruling-class elites.
America’s intellectual elites, including evangelical leaders, would import a servant class at no cost to themselves. The immigrants don’t compete for jobs with Moore and his fellow religious leaders. Nor does immigration threaten the livelihoods of the lawyers, politicians, journalists, pastors, priests, and businessmen who want to open the borders.
Moore and his likeminded ilk have turned Jesus into a lobbyist for Big Ag, Big Tech and race-hustling practitioners of Identity Politics. And they’ve done so at the expense of legacy Americans — the people that some of us call neighbors made in the image of God.