Saturday, September 1

Labor Shortage Will Depress the Economy

Rudy Carrasco at Urban Onramps is blogging about those jobs Americans won't do and an Associated Press article that reports on help wanted ads that are going unanswered in the west.
The article doesn’t even mention the word “immigration.” (Well, not by name.) But read it and you will get a picture of what things might be like once the government follows through on this immigration crackdown thing. There has been a big debate on the concept of “jobs Americans won’t do,” but up to now it’s been pretty theoretical. Well, from now on, it won’t be.
I don't have a problem with the illegal immigration crackdown--the laws need to be enforced--but I do have a problem with the fact that nothing is being done to fix the legal immigration process. It needs to be safer, more efficient, and provide for the labor needs of the country. Either that, or the real labor shortage issue needs to be addressed. It seems quite obvious we have a serious need for a comprehensive temporary worker program in many sectors of our economy.

Rudy quoted the following in the AP article:
John Francis, who owns the McDonald’s in Sidney, Mont., said he tried advertising in the local newspaper and even offered up to $10 an hour to compete with higher-paying oil field jobs. Yet the only calls were from other business owners upset they would have to raise wages, too. Of course, Francis’ current employees also wanted a pay hike.

“I don’t know what the answer is,” Francis said. “There’s just nobody around that wants to work.”

The final paragraph in the article was worth paying noting:

"The hardest thing is to keep the economy growing at a strong rate when you have a low unemployment rate," he said. "Take a company that wants to expand. Where is the next worker going to come from?"

Americans need to STOP being so combative, emotional and irrational when discussing the immigration debate, and need to start discussing solutions and ideas. I'm not asking anyone to change their views or to compromise on their position -- I'm asking people to start listening and start being solution-oriented in our discussions. Yes, border security is urgent. Yes, the laws need to be enforced.  But there is a deeper underlying economic problem that seems to me is being ignored in all the rhetoric.

The fact remains that if our country continues to experience the labor shortage we are experiencing, the economy is going to slow down and prices are going to go way up. It's basic economics! And while many middle class and affluent Americans might look at their check books right now, and say "I'm ok with that...I can pay higher prices" the fact remains that millions will be negatively affected by an economic slowdown. 
Being myopic about this issue is not going to help our country. Saying exciting, passionate and short-sighted sound bites for the cameras might get you invited back on Fox News, but it won't solve our country's labor and economic challenges. It truly is time conservatives start looking for solutions. What is it going to be?

Feel free to leave your ideas, suggestions or thoughts in the comments. What solution do you think America should pursue? What would you suggest Congress, the Senate and the future President should pursue?
Cross posted at

Thursday, August 30

New CIS report: Immigration and U.S. population growth

 Hey everyone. I got this in my inbox this morning.  I want to highlight a key point in the policy discussion section.
Some see a deteriorating quality of life with a larger population, including its impact on such things as pollution, congestion, loss of open spaces, and sprawl. Others may feel that a much larger population will create more opportunities for businesses, workers, and consumers. These projections do not resolve those questions. What the projections do tell us is where we are headed as a country. The question for the nation is: Do we wish to go there? 
Regardless of your views on the issue, I think its important to note that it is American citizens -- voters -- who should get to choose on the direction America will take. The law is already clear about much of the issues being debated -- why are we debating it? America DOES have a right to determine its own future and what guests it welcomes. The push to legitimize illegal immigration is ultimately only harming law-abiding, legal immigrants who get caught up in the wave of discontent with our uninvited guests.
Here is the rest of the email.
New Report Takes Detailed Look at Different Levels of Admissions

WASHINGTON (August 30, 2007) -- A new report from the Center for Immigration Studies projects how different levels of immigration would impact the future size of America's population. The findings, carefully modeled on earlier projections by the Census Bureau, show that the current level of immigration will add 105 million to the population by 2060, while having a small effect on the aging of society.

The report, entitled ''100 Million More: Projecting the Impact of Immigration on the U.S. Population, 2007 to 2060,'' will be online at . Among the other findings:

* Currently, 1.6 million legal and illegal immigrants settle in the country each year; 350,000 immigrants leave each year, resulting in net immigration of 1.25 million.

* If immigration continues at current levels, the nation’s population will increase from 301 million today to 468 million in 2060 -- a 167 million (or 56 percent) increase. Future immigrants plus their descendants will account for 105 million (or 63 percent) of the increase.

* The total projected growth of 167 million is equal to the combined populations of Great Britain, France, and Spain. The 105 million from immigration by itself is equal to 13 additional New York Cities.

* If the annual level of net immigration was reduced to 300,000, future immigration would add 25 million people to the population by 2060 -- 80 million fewer than the current level would add.

* The above projection follows exactly the Census Bureau's assumptions about future birth and death rates, including a decline in the birth rate for Hispanics, who comprise the largest share of immigrants.

* Net immigration has been increasing for five decades; if that trends continues, the increase caused by immigration will be higher than the projected 105 million.

* While immigration has a very large impact on the size of the nation's population, it has only a small effect in slowing the aging of American society.

* At the current level of net immigration (1.25 million a year), 61 percent of the nation's population will be of working age (15 to 66) in 2060, compared to 60 percent if net immigration were reduced to 300,000 a year.

* If net immigration was doubled to 2.5 million a year it would raise the working-age share of the population by one additional percentage point, to 62 percent, by 2060. But that level of immigration would create a U.S. population of 573 million, double its size in the 2000 Census.

Policy Discussion: The findings of this study make clear that the debate over immigration should not be whether it makes for a much larger population -- without question it does. Consistent with the findings of the Census Bureau, these projections also show that the debate over immigration should not be whether it has a large impact on the aging of society -- without question it does not. The central question this study raises and that Americans must answer is what costs and benefits come with having a much larger population and a more densely settled country. Some see a deteriorating quality of life with a larger population, including its impact on such things as pollution, congestion, loss of open spaces, and sprawl. Others may feel that a much larger population will create more opportunities for businesses, workers, and consumers. These projections do not resolve those questions. What the projections do tell us is where we are headed as a country. The question for the nation is: Do we wish to go there?

Methodology: This report uses the Census Bureau's assumptions about future birth and death rates from its most recent projections and then simply varies the immigration component. The last Census Bureau projection, released in March 2004, incorporated only one immigration scenario into the projection, so immigration's impact was unclear. The new Center for Immigration Studies report is the first to show the impact of so many different levels of immigration. At present, elected officials have no way of knowing how 200,000 immigrants a year versus two million immigrants a year might affect the population in, say, a 20- or 50-year time period. These projections provide the answers. The new projections are based on the most recent immigration data, whereas the March 2004 Census Bureau projections were based on data collected in the 1990s prior to the results of the 2000 Census, and assumed a much lower level of immigration than was actually the case.

Monday, August 27

In my inbox: RNC Responds to Chuck Schumer

I guess it was to much to hope that the Democrat congress could avoid making the Justice Department into a partican issue.
"RNC Chairman Robert M. “Mike” Duncan released the following statement today in response to Chuck Schumer’s comments on the resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales."

“Chuck Schumer, the Chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, has wasted no time appearing on the airwaves today to make the resignation of Alberto Gonzales – and the appointment of a new Attorney General – into a partisan issue.  The appointment of a new Attorney General should not be about scoring political points, and it should not be about fundraising for the next election; it must be about selecting the best possible person to be our nation’s next top law enforcement official.” 

Putnam Statement on Resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales

Congressman Adam Putnam (FL-12), Chairman of the House Republican Conference, issued the following statement on the resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales:

“The Department of Justice now has the opportunity to benefit from fresh leadership. What the American people need is an effective, independent Attorney General who will be undistracted in his or her efforts to enforce our laws, secure our borders, and vigorously prosecute the war against radical militant Islamists.

“The Congress will soon take up debate on permanently modernizing our intelligence gathering laws. A new Attorney General should have the necessary credibility on Capitol Hill to give our intelligence and law enforcement communities the tools they need to intercept terrorist communications and stop attacks before they happen.

“Finally, it is incumbent upon both the new Attorney General and Congressional Democrat leaders to put an end to the politicization of the Justice Department.”

I'll second that last idea -- how about the Democrats stop politicizing the Justice Department? Is that to much to ask for?

On NPR's "Tell Me More" later in the day

I'm not sure if its going to be for today's show, or tomorrow's. I'll be talking about the Alberto Gonzalez resignation. I'll update as I know more. Check out Michelle's blog here.

BREAKING: Gonzalez resigns!

Understandable considering the distraction the Liberals have made out of him. It's to bad. Now that the Libs have lost Rove, AND Gonzalez, I wonder what Boogie man they will go after next?

NY Times has the story.