Wednesday, August 8, 2007

About time

If the right is serious about doing something about illegal immigration, then why aren't they howling to demand employer-side enforcement?

Basic economics: If jobs here are plentiful enough and comparatively well-paying enough relative to opportunities elsewhere, people will find a way here to fill those jobs. If there is a demand, a market will arise to meet that demand. Any attempt to block that market will be circumvented by the formation of black markets or other mechanisms.

The only viable long-term solution is to remove the demand. If employers are penalized, badly, they'll straighten up because it costs them too much not to. Of course, that won't happen, because businesses want a ready supply of low-cost easily-exploitable labor, to keep their costs down and profits high. And they contribute heavily to political parties (mostly the GOP) that support them.

The current effort is welcome, and overdue. But it's mostly, I think, for appearances. Six months from now it'll have blown over and be forgotten.

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