This Labor Market Moves Both Ways

Published on February 23rd, 2009

The article "Immigration: After the Boom/Dispatches From the Downturn" (Currents, Feb. 13) attempts to project a sympathetic view of the impact of the economic downturn on the "estimated 12 million immigrants who are in the U.S. illegally and toil in the off-the-books economy."

The travails of this group, however, should elicit little sympathy from U.S. taxpayers who will be contributing hundreds of billions of dollars in an attempt to "create jobs" for American workers. Rather than throwing money at the unemployment problem in haphazard fashion, why not simply enforce immigration laws, which could free existing jobs for American workers?

U.S. business owners must learn that the labor market — like other free markets — moves in both directions when not subject to manipulation and illegality. Some business models may become unviable without the benefit of illegal labor. These businesses should be allowed to perish because they profit only by unfairly shifting a portion of their labor costs to the rest of society.

Scott Pomerantz , CAPS Member

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