Immigration: Who And How Many?

Immigration: Who And How Many? By the Z Blog.

The immigration debate in America, and maybe the West as a whole, is not much of a debate, at least as far as public policy. Instead, it is something of a meta-debate, in that the facts and important decisions are talked about indirectly …

That’s what we are seeing with the stand-off between Trump and the Cult of Brown Ascendancy. We’re slowing creeping up on the fact that immigration is about who and how many. That is, who will we accept and how many of them will we accept. Immigration has always been about who and how many. …

The how many part is the easiest, especially if you start with zero as the default. No one is walking around thinking to themselves, “We really need more Eritreans around here.” If immigration was capped at zero, no one would notice. In fact, if there was a moratorium and the government started to aggressively deport people, even those in the system, most people would not care. In other words, the how many number is a small number.

The tougher question is what sorts of immigrants would we accept, even in limited numbers. In the Mid-Atlantic, where a large Korean community exists, most people would be fine with Korean immigration. Unlike the Chinese, Koreans are not fleeing political oppression or economic uncertainty. Koreans come here for lifestyle reasons, so they assimilate rapidly. They also take pride in being the model minority, despite what what some lefty advocates claim. Koreans came here to be Americans.

At the other end, no one would want any Muslims from the Middle East, as they simply don’t fit a modern Western country. Everywhere Muslim migration has been high, we see terrorist barriers, armed patrols and absurd security measures. …

It’s all about the framing:

One of the interesting things that happens when you start to think “from where and how many” is the how many becomes an easier question the more you think honestly about the “from where” part.

For Americans, the real issue is how many South Americans we will accept. That quickly reduces to a much simpler question. Do we need any of them? For most people, the answer is no, we don’t need more people. Therefore, the only question left is are we morally bound to take anyone in for permanent settlement.

That, of course, is why the open borders crowd prefers to keep this a meta-debate about meta-morality. Once you start thinking about the facts, the default on immigration swings 180 degrees. The default becomes zero and building a massive barrier to entry makes complete sense. The debate is over the exceptions and more important, the conditions for those exceptions.