« Freakonomics Radio

231. Is Migration a Basic Human Right?

2015-12-16 | 🔗
The argument for open borders is compelling -- and deeply problematic.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
This podcast dynamically inserts audio advertisements of varying lengths for each download. As a result, the transcription time indexes may be inaccurate.
If you'd like to listen to free economic radio without ads the place to do that is sticker premium. Five dollars a month and you can get a free month trial by going to stick your premium dot com and use a promo code freak. You also get access to all our bonus. Episodes and you'll be supporting our show to that sticker premium, dot, com, promo code, freak thanks, when the bean first arrived in America, she had one big question where are all the Americans. I don't see. Any American bewildered, not allowed spanish, the Chinese in the end polish people everywhere. I see immigrant people. She came here from Egypt with her two kids in two thousand thirteen, a tourist visa, her husband's visa- she says, didn't come
grew so intervene, moved in with her mother, her sister and her sisters, kids in Queens New York. We have fished in captive of stocks being a coptic Christian and muslim majority. Egypt never easy, and, as the government grew more Islamist became outright dangerous. Levine he's thirty five years old says she left Egypt after being threatened by a man who accused her of giving his sister, a Bible, and he calling me to just tell me I'll kill you. I love you, gentlemen, so I guess here and we decided to come here. She says this kind of threat is common. They think that children, and maybe they killed they ask for me. So I scared about my my children. First
when our tourist visa ran out Levine applied for political asylum that help from a friend in a church you're more than a year in the? U S, she and her kids were granted asylum, but her husband is still in Egypt, so hard so hard. I need him, they need him because you know its responsibility, big responsibility in their age. They need the father she's. I've seen here, he is nine nine and have an they remember, because we was together all the time On the day of the day we are together, many is and
is now no nothing for two years and have its now, so that the kids, Mr Father said I live at home with my dad flesh came together, play a game of coins, but they are hopeful who joined them soon so, what is it? What's? Keeping the kids dad nervines husband, separated from them? It's a combination of things, of course, the lengthy asylum process, the paperwork and when you get right down to it a border in an idea
world. I believe that we all ought to have the right to move about the globe today. On economics, radio, the economic argument for open borders, although let me warn you the economist who makes the argument admits that it's not so much about economics as morality, money whips around the world at lightning speed goods move around the world very very quickly. We have container ships transporting goods throughout the entire globe. The only thing which can't move to day is people, and that should be the one thing which, on to have the most right to move from W and Y see studios. This is for economics, radio, the podcast that explores the hidden side of everything. Here's your house, Stephen Dogma,
Alex tab. Iraq is a professor of economics. It George Mason University, like Levine. He too, is an immigrant. My mother's family came from England, my father's family, I came from a persia from a modern day, IRAN and as an academic. He has a long standing interest in immigration, not so much as a research question, but more as a almost a moral question. Why do we have these demands? the boundaries for people simply exercising their right to move around right to move is gonna, be one of the most fundamental rights and yet for strange reasons. It stops at these arbitrary boundaries. We call national borders. You say for strange reasons, but it's not like. We don't understand the history of you know the world and power
the nation states and things like that right. So how strange are reasons really, in other words, as much as you may not like those reasons, aren't they very much symptom of the way humans have behaved throughout history borders I mean Borders are very common in one sense As you say, when you look around that's the way the world is organised and we'll just gone so used to them that we don't even ask very much about their fundamental justification and its work. You come to ask about the fundamental justifications for borders that they begin to look very strange because they run counter to almost all of our moral writings and intuition, and philosophies so whether we think about me utilitarians or egalitarian, means or a whole eighty up, libertarian views borders become very difficult to justify their incomes
with much of our moral teachings in other areas of life. So how do you reconcile there's this great historic literature of philosophy? the fee and moral philosophy and so on, which would seem to promote you know the freedom to go anywhere to live and work anywhere had he had you reconcile that deepen rich history with the deepen rich history of reach, the borders and real nation states and real immigration policy, in other words, I'll, be the sceptic for a moment. I could you say: well, that's what philosophers do philosophers talk about in a perfect world where All people were x, Y and Z. Things would go like this, but we all know that philosophers no idea the world actually works. So you know are more
intuitions, and indeed our laws today are that you shouldn't discriminate against someone because of their race because of their gender in their sexual preference or other issues, but for odd reasons. It perfectly okay to discriminate against someone because they were born somewhere else. You can, in fact in put up walls and machine guns and prevent someone for moving simply for the reason that they were born somewhere else. Now to defend philosophy, for very long periods of time races and was perfectly normal. People have been doing it for thousands of years, and then people began to ask her what what justification that is there for treating someone so differently just because of their race and when people could come up with an answer
to that question when they were forced into this discomforting area that they can't justify this terrible injustice. Things began to change. There are fundamental human rights. There are rights which a crew to everyone, no matter who they are no matter where they are on the globe. Those rights include the right to free expression, the include the right to freedom of religion, and I believe they should also include the right. To move about the earth. I think it is a human right, but I do think There is a kind of sense where Ito somebody's taking my bread. So why don't They live in their own country, That is Madeleine Albright and I run the all bright stone age group as one of the chairs, and I teach it George down and chairman of the Board of the National Democratic Institute, among other things, among others,
things. You were the secretary of state before that: U S ambassador to the United Nations, cracked, absolutely that is true secretary, alright was herself a refugee twice when my father was Czechoslovak, diplomat and when the Nazis marched into Prague and March nineteen thirty nine hours two years old and my parents decide tat they had to leave the family fled to London, endured the blitz and, after the war returned to Czechoslovakia again, Albright's father worked as a diplomat when the communist took over in February nineteen, forty eight he had just got new assignment, which was to be the czechoslovak where preventative on a commission to do with India, Pakistan over Kashmir, but he did not want to work for the new communist regime,
and so he resigned defected and asked for political asylum. In the United States and it was grand and we were technically called displaced persons and we were refugees and an? I hesitate to compare myself at all to the people. now are walking in deserts and drowning in boats and being refused entry into any country that they would like to go to because my story? Was clearly one where we didn't have that kind. suffering in order to get into the United States. But my father on Iraq, either basis would say other country, say sorry. Your countries been taken over by terrible people and you I'll come here and when are you going home a moment the United States. People would say we're sorry.
Countries been taken over by a terrible system, your welcome here and when we, become citizens- and he said that is the difference between other countries in Amerika, we should say you are, admittedly, probably the number one poster girl for immigration to the United States. We were, we were pretty lucky to get you well I certainly am grateful and I just pride myself on my twitter account as a great philammon. and I'm sitting in my office, and I have in front of me the manifest of the ship that I came in on the S s on November eleven nineteen, forty eight. I have my commission on the wall signed by press. Clinton, and then, if I may, On the other side, I have the metal of freedom of the press. Obama gave me. That's all story, and I am grateful to be at American.
It's hard for me to imagine that your own background did not inform the way you ve looked at geopolitics as a professional, but Maybe- wrong. Yes, absolutely it is true in the following way. I My child of world two and the cold war? There is no question about that and when I saw very specific as you mentioned, I was ambassador at the United Nations and when. I saw what was happening in the Balkans and people being low into trucks and trains and sent to concentration, slash labour camps. I thought we ve seen this before and and people in Bosnia and several later were being ethnically key. And only because They were Muslims. I thought we can't have that when Now I was in the government when I could argue for us doing,
something- and so yes, very much I was informed by my own background. In addition, I later found out about my jewish background and people thought that may be. action in Bosnia had to do with that. It didn't mean, because I always knew about the Holocaust. I didn't however, no that it applied to my own family, but there is no question that my background. Definitely, formed the way that I see things so, Madam Secretary, I have to ask: do you watch madam secretary? The tv show do yes, I'm guessing you ve noticed the secretary in that show is briefly made acting president when a line of succession kind of gets to her, a series of circumstance, but because you are not a natural born, U S, citizen! That was not a possibility for you understand. You are also excluded from nuclear contingency plans and so on do you, and or do you consider those exclusions sensible based on Europe,
been foreign born or more of a strange historical relic, where I think it a little bit of a strange historical relic because of Hamilton? Frankly? But basically, I do think bad naturalised. Citizens should be eligible, but after living in for a long long time. I think that you cannot as a citizen of a country that you ve just kind of arrived in, and I do think that it requires understood the country, the opposite. However, you didn't ask me this book. President Havel wanted me to become the president of the Czech Republic and I, refused for any number of reasons, but one because I hadn't there. I didn't understand it. How would you characterize the United States? Is immigration policies over the last couple centuries? Have they been largely sensible
and productive were somewhat random and occasionally contradictory, even Zena Phobic. I think that day, I've been episodic to some extent. I think that mostly Then we have to remember that we are a country of immigrants and therefore they clearly have worked, and I am very troubled by some of the discussion now and I know what it's like. I have renewed my bows on a regular basis is an American, an idle become a citizen until I was a junior in college and I take- very seriously I and then I also participated in a number of naturalisation ceremonies, and I have to say that moving one was on July. Fourth, too, as an during the millennium admonish cello.
And as I handed the naturalisation certificates to the people, I said this is the most important point, the paper you will ever get the same one guard it with your life All that said, and even though we are a country of immigrants, Madeleine ray understands why immigration is so contentious, but I think the basic issue is fear and the fear often comes from a sense that, their there's, an economical loss that somebody's taken your job or your house or marriage. Sister, you ve heard these fears expressed them shore, specially whenever its presidential campaign season these days. There is the fear of terrorism. Believe me, then, that coming from Syria
coming from Sierra, not about here, because we're standing back with them, but also the more historic fear of economic damage. So I think the service. Many people- I worry about jobs, Alex Tab, Iraq again, and it is true- the economy is still somewhat shaky, but this is where things get complicated. The effects on the wages of workers and on the economy as a whole are completely different. That's Michael Clemens, I most senior fellow at the center for global development and I'm an economist who studies mobile migration Clemens like Tamerack, takes a generally positive view on immigration and jobs. He does not, however, support open borders. I support since more regulation of migration and I think that sensible regulation of migration has to take into account the tremendous economic benefits of migration and the vast economic costs of barriers to migration. Ok,
let's consider those benefits and costs. Let's start with, perhaps the most common concern, the effect that migration, as on workers, wages. The consensus of the economic research is that their me a negative effect on the wages of some workers, particularly low skilled workers in the countries that migrants go to and that there is a large positive effect, on the wages of workers in countries that migrants leave and first of all, it makes sense that there could be some degree of downward pressure on wages in the country's migrants go to when there's a greater supply of labour, the price would tend to go down. It's also for the same reason: in countries like Poland or Mexico, where workers leave, you would expect upward pressure on wages. Ok, that seems sensible. You increase the supply of.
fever and country acts, and you might depress wages there for some people, and if the workers came from country, why their absence may increase wages for the workers left behind, but Clement says the wage decrease in country x is not as scary as it sounds. One thing that economist found is that the downward pressure on wages in countries where migrants go is much less than the upward pressure on wages that migrants leave, and that makes sense to because when people leave a country they tend to be pretty good substitutes for the other workers in that country, but workers that arrive in a country tend to be very different from the workers that surround them. Often they have a much lower it or much higher education levels, for example, and tend to compliment workers in the workforce. That's just one of the reasons why the overall effect on wages of workers,
those countries that migrants go too is very low and typically measured around zero? Did you catch that the overall effect and country acts with a new workers are coming is typically measured around zero sum economic research finds that migrants make non migrants more productive and Clemens points out that forty percent of Fortune five hundred companies, the five hundred largest corporations in the. U S were founded by migrants or their children. Migrants, bring ideas and new technologies, migrants bring a diversity. culture that can lead to all kinds of unpredictable economic interactions. We're talkin, but a story that his way way more complicated than just migrants. Come and for every moment who comes, they take a job. It might be helpful. Clemens says to think about a different infusion of labour into the: U S, economy, which didn't have anything to do with migration, so think of
out women entering the labour force after the nineteen forties million, The women entering labour force working who were not working before outside the home that had a tremendously positive effect on the U S economy, even though economists have shown that some of the Women competed to some degree with men who are already in the workforce. That is. Some women entering the workforce may have exerted modest downward pressure on the wages of some men, particularly low skilled men. Why do the benefits of that massively exceed the costs, because the key me is very complex. Women entering the labour force are not exactly identical to men, so they often
compliment men in the workplace rather than substitute for them. Migrants are just like that. Women start businesses that employ men. Migrants do too, Women take the money that they earn and the labour market and spend it on stuff. That's often made by men. Migrants. Do that as well. That's why? Even though there I'd have been waged competition between men and women in the fifties and sixtys. Nobody would say now we would make the u s richer by banning women from working to any degree. So that's one way to look at the economic effects of migration within a country, but what about the big picture? What about migration and global productivity? A few years ago, Michael Clemens wrote an influential pay. It's called economics and emigration trillion dollar bills on the sidewalk
The title refers to an old joke to economists are walking down the street, pretty funny already and one of them sees what looks like a twenty dollar bill lying on the sidewalk pay. Isn't I'm twenty dollar bill? He says it can't be the other ones. Somebody would have already picked it up. In other words, nobody just leave free money lying around except Michael Clemens, argues when it comes to labour mobility. So you know how in real estate, they say that value is all about location, location, location, it's the same for the value of your labour, and that has a remarkable invocation. It means that barriers that keep you in places where you are less economically productive, keep you from making the contribution you could make and for every person
whose kept in a poor country that's a tiny little drag on the world economy that adds up. So what that means is that even a modest relaxing some of the barriers to migration that we have right. Now, I'm talking about one in twenty people who now live in poor countries being able to work in a rich can Without trillions of dollars a year to the world economy. It would add more. are you to the world economy, then dropping all meaning barriers to trade every tariff. Every quota and dry thing all remaining barriers to international investment. Combined
isn't that an astonishing, clean believable, perhaps but still astonishing in that's, why Alex Tab? Iraq calls immigration. The world's best anti poverty programme is actually very simple. You take a person from a boar, country country like Haiti, for example, and you bring them to the United States or another developed country, and their wages go up three times four times five times. I'm dumps sometimes as much as ten times. So it's an incredible crease in living standards, simply by moving someone from where their labour has low value moving them. Where their labour has high value its far more effective than any other anti poverty programme. We ve ever tried case. That sounds good on the input side. What about on the output cider the
the emigrating aside? So if I let's say you know, I think I'm gonna take the ten percent best smartest hardest working most devoted Peter Employees are students or whatever from country X, Haiti. What does that do to Haiti? Is that a tide that lifts all boats or does it lift my boat and the boats of the ten percent who get here? So I think there are two points to make her. First of all, the ten percent of Haiti, Haiti doesn't have a ride, say we own these people and they're going to be chained to our country, because if we let them go, the rest of us are going to be worse off. That's not how we treat people now on the Erie Canal.
issue. What does happen? It actually looks like everybody is better off. First of all, the Haitians that move they maintain ties with their older country. They send back lot of remittances, which are again a very effective anti poverty programme. It's much better. For example, if parents are sent back money to their kids in Haiti or to their grandparents in Haiti at a much more effective programme, individual money transfers, then a transfer of money from one government to another government. So overall this interconnected. Of the world. I think makes pretty much everyone better off, so it is on those two foundations, economic and moral, that Alex Tab. Iraq makes his case for getting rid of national borders
It is such a compelling case that it's easy to forget for a moment, at least just how implausible it is. A nation has a right, to control who doesn't doesn't join it and who does and does not enter its borders just like it the other human group does its Jean Callaghan. He teaches economics at Saint Joseph College, in New York, a characteristic of any human organization. Any human group is the ability to control some sort of border this radio station. function as a radio station. If everyone who wanted to come in and grab MIKE could grab one New York, Knicks couldn't function as a basketball If I could wander around any time, my one demand to play point guard after reading. open borders as saying that Alex Tab. Iraq wrote in the Atlantic
Callaghan wrote a response in the american conservative was called the open borders fantasy. Any nation that wants to have a come all immigrants policy. I think they are entitled to have it. My point is that the nation itself should decide who gets to join, who doesn't just as tab uses, both morality and economics, in arguing for open borders. Callaghan does the same in arguing against first the moral. I think that it's a wonderful, thing, when the nation wishes to be charitable to refugees, I think it's very much analogous to whether a family would want to take them in, and I think the Eu S could accept syrian refugees, for instance in some number, but though refugee child would have a right to demand that my
family, take them in its inactive charity. That's a wonderful thing to do, but a family may not have the capacity they may already be just scraping by its their decision. In other words, Callaghan economic objection to open borders goes to Alex Tab, Iraq's political leanings. Being that he's a libertarian, he has a belief in strong property rights. So presumably he doesn't feel that bill gates, for instance, has to let my kids into his family, because Bill Gates kids path, a lot of opportunities, my kids don't,
If we don't have that principle in terms of property rights, why does it suddenly become mandatory in terms of nations, so this gets us to an even bigger idea than open borders, which is the idea of borders generally and also of the nation state, which means this is probably a good time to take a step back in history to the earliest borders which were when
very hard to say the first city states of Mesopotamia had walled borders more than six thousand years ago. The development of borders accelerated with permanent settlement of movement to agriculture and therefore the need to defend a particular pots of land militarily from people who wanted to take that land or to pillage that land. That's the leap, the grain, an economist and writer. They also develop in order to be able to tax and control trade, to enforce look monopolies to impose, in effect, import duties those kinds of things, so you might think there's a straight line from ancient history up to today, with restrictive borders everywhere, all the while, but that's not the case before World WAR, one. The green tells us many West
countries essentially had open borders in to eat tonight. States had an open door policy person has an open door policy and depressions. First immigration restrictions, Kar Lake in one thousand, nine hundred and five. So we do have experience of running countries without the immigration controls we have now, and it wasn't just the grain himself is well. These european I was born in London. My father is french and my mother is estonian. As for his views on immigration, well, one of his books is called immigrants. Your country needs them. So you see that many arguments which are framed in a quiet way actually xenophobic and origin. So you can see that when migrants away king their keys to stating our jobs,
When they're out of work there accused of sponging of welfare when their rich there accusative driving prices up and when that poor, their accused of driving standards down the green used to be an economic advisor to the President of the European Common which gave him a front row seat to one the most amazing open border experiments in history, the European Union and the Shanghai agreement that preceded it. The same agreement started with a handful of countries in the nineteen ices has since been broadened to Twenty six countries, twenty two of which are members of the European Union and for them not and people can move freely across them without China,
that's true whether that crossing the border Fraser for between a France and Belgium or France and ITALY is true that taking a plane between those countries, so in effect that it's like, when you cross the United States, Grand cross the state line or not taking a plane from one place to another, so parts of Europe have been experimenting with open borders, since the nineteen eighties, then in two thousand for several poorer former communist Countries in central and Eastern Europe joined the EU that increase the supply of people, s but to move about by about a hundred million people now moment, therefore, that a hundred million or indeed perhaps a very large proportion of that would have moved any fight. What one finds is that only or million out of those a hundred million. I have moved and most of those have moved temporarily
One should not underestimate the divisions in income between these countries and Romania, for example, is about six times poorer than Sweden, such a big gap that exists between that his face and Mexico and despite this huge gaps, you see that only a fraction of people move and that those who do move tend to move temporarily. Second, Simply isn't true that society has collapsed. On the contrary, all Studies show that the immigrants have been good for the economy is to which type moves that they haven't taken jobs. They haven't depressed wages, but then that contributors to public finances, so they pay more taxes than they take out in benefits. Indeed, you know they tend to complement the work of local workers and that for an ounce of relativity. So, for example, if you've got hardworking polish builders, they may encourage that british CO workers to work harder.
They may enable the british owner of the company for which they work to expand. In so far as I am more willing to work, they may increase the size of voting industry in general, and we ve seen all those things happen as a result of that both suppose themselves and Britain's are better off in what about the effect on Poland. Now it's true that if too many people leave a country, an economy that it may suffer as a result of what is how to make that case with Poland. Opponent is the most successful economy in Europe by along status. Since the crisis it's hard to make an argument that Poland is suffering from that. I think you ve younger ones, that further to say, even if Poland were suffering, does
to reason to restrict freedom of movement at you. We don't generate say that one or two constrain a people's freedom, I simply because it might be detrimental to the place where they have to be borne. Coming up, economics, radio, it's a bit weird to be having an conversation about open borders when in the U S, especially things or move in the opposite direction and of course the five should be admitted into the United States at this point. But how about an immigration plan? It's also a moneymaker as in an immigration fee. The example he cited was fit thousand dollars and if you ve, missed an episode of free economic radio, you catch up or subscribe for free at Itunes,
Just named this show one of the best of two thousand fifteen Alex Deborah an economist, adored Mason University, we'd like to get rid of national borders, so Alex, wouldn't open border policy is you're proposing B. essentially an immigration policy only or does it become quickly much broader than that I mean the way. I am vision it working as you propose. Is it it would inherently maybe not quickly but inherently led essentially to the end of the nation state. No, no, not necessarily I mean, after all, look have open borders in the United States between States and Texas,
different, then New York as different, then Mississippi We have open borders between cities, but LOS Angeles is a different place. Then Chicago, so I'm not against different regions, having their own laws and cultures and and mores, but I think people ought to be able to move between those regions. I am one point myself held the libertarian position like tab rocks and immigration. That's Jean Callaghan he's a critic. Of open borders. Many of the libertarian economists are anarchists actually and are in favour of the name. state going away, and they think that private law institutions could handle this everything the nation state does so in many cases. I suspect that the real objection is to the existence of the nation state,
not to its particular policy Callaghan view on the nation state me mile, is clear. The nation state has an obligation to protect the life of the well being the health of its citizens. This is what the nation state exists for and the fact that it treats its citizens different. Then citizens of elsewhere just means it's doing its duty. Its duty is to them. So the fact that it stands in a different relation to those citizens, then to citizens of other nations. Is not a moral outrage. It's in fact. or a reason that the nation state exists whether you agree more with Callaghan view of the nation state or tab rocks is likely the result of many factors. Probably many personal factors like how many boys,
hers you or your family have crossed and whether those were round trips or one way journeys whether youth, The benefits to society outweigh the costs and whether the nation state you happen to live in is one where people are desperate to get into or desperate to leave. I do think that what people should do. Is frankly put themselves into the shoes of somebody who is desperate and good and wants to contribute and is treated in an inhuman way when they arrive at a border. That's former secretary state, Madeleine Albright. Again the refugees on her watch back in the late nineteenth Ninetys were from Bosnia and Kosovo. the refugee she's thinking about these days are primarily from the civil war in Syria. They are to number more than four million the thing that I find
art about and again this goes back to my background and travelling across this huge country. We have room in the United States, for people and immigrants have been pretty good citizens frankly and want to be a part of this country and is very hard for us to tell other countries that have more dense populations unless space, that you know you do something, and we are saying not here, I believe in the role of the United
it's I happen to believe we are an exceptional nation of emigrants. Let's assume at one agrees with your position on the strength of diversity. The practical question, to my mind at least, becomes then how does one meaning a nation, a government even at any community? How does one balance that strength with the realities of immigration and economics, and so in other words, how does one sensibly set the rules for whose allowed to move into a country and whose not? Because if we presumably opened up- let's say the american borders to anyone and everyone we'd get pretty crowded pretty fast, and I assume that's not the idea that you have in mind outlook. I do think there need to be certain rules for coming into a country
I find stunning the following set of facts: Jordan. They have refugees from Iraq, Palestine and Syria in Numbers proportional numbers to what their population it is as though the United States had sixty million refugees. We can't even deal with eleven million undocumented workers. I think that where we have been makes no sense at all and there needs to be absent. the syrian issue, even before some kind of a rational immigration, The programme for the United States Legal tried to figure out. We know how people come here. What the procedure is. Fairness, legality, a whole aspect of things, but for me the default position should be that we do benefit by the diversity that we can use,
more people that people want to work and that there can and will be jobs for them? It does it mean there. We can just say y'all come. I do think that there has to be some way of checking. Who is who? I do believe that operates position may strike you as moderate, sensible, almost in arguable, depending of course on the context, meaning at any moment. What's going in the world in our minds and the small rooms were big. Decisions are made coming back on the right now is more horrifying night in Paris. Police have now confirmed at least for attacks in the city of Paris. The area covering knocked down by many many colleagues voted. I've attackers did in the text
city, humorous gun and grenade attacks, leaving over two dozen people dead in November, jihadist skilled a hundred thirty people in Paris, one of the killers reportedly had assyrian passport. The bore the name of a syrian refugee. That passport is now believed to be fake within hours of the Paris attacks. Some presidential candidates in the? U S called for closing our borders to syrian refugees them here under these circumstances is a suspension of intellect I don't pick orphan codify should be admitted into the United States. At this point there
family here. While we get a care pretty spoke, we need to put the safety and security the american people first. Putting the people are not is that are coming here from Syria as part of this mass migration that if I win, if I win their going back there going back I'll, tell him we're going back. We'll show up asleep the Paris attacks, Hariri, shocking and people, not just in Paris in France, but across Europe are afraid. That's Philippe Legrain, the european economist I mean, even if there had been a board of control, is within the Schengen area. I still would have been the attacks on Paris. Most of the perpetrators were french. Some of them were based in Belgium, so there
dear that somehow closing the borders is the right response to terrorism. I think, has no basis in logic. A fortunate the political climate. The moment where all these issues are being conflated whereby people are one reacting could have spared the moment emotional way and to wear nasty. Far right. Politicians are trying to profit from this issue. And they're saying we told you so immigration is a bad thing and conflicting the idea of immigration, Islam, terrorism, refugees and saying that the solution is to shut up shop and turn away refugees that same
foundation has been happening in the U S and it was magnified when a married couple killed fourteen people at a holiday party in San Bernardino, California, it was labeled a terrorist attack. As the couple supported ISIS ideology, the husband was born in Chicago to an immigrant family from Pakistan. The wife came to the: U S from Pakistan in July, twenty fourteen on, what's known as a fiance visa, whose screening process, said to be particularly rigorous. Donald Trump took the hardest line among the presidential candidates, calling for a temporary but complete ban on all muslim immigrants. To the? U S, there was plenty of outrage sure, but trumps position also lifted his pole numbers to an all time, high its critical to protect the security of the country. That's an important thing to do. That's the economists Michael Clementines again, whose specialty is global migration,
However, there is a long tradition in this country of over reacting to imagine security threats. This was one of reasons why there was a movement to ban Catholics in the the nineteenth century, because there was a perceived threats of the Vatican, take over governance of the! U S, it was the reason cited too exclude all ethnically chinese people for seventy years. It was a reason cited to exclude some. Europeans and Eastern Europeans perceived to be anarchists and communists in the night in twenties, if you
are a progressive aura capital de Democratic for even a libertarian. Clemens is argument, probably rings treaty, but if you're not or even if you're just influenced a little bit by the recent terrorism than the idea of opening up our borders as Alex Tab, Iraq is advocating, isn't even a legitimate idea. Jean Callaghan again, it would seem if tab. Iraq is really serious that if a couple thousand members of ISIS showed up today and said while we're here to overthrow your government, we'd have to say well, we can't stop yo, you know until they do something. Certainly, if I think, if we can catch someone at the border, who has evil intense and stop them there, that's much better than catching them later.
and without borders. Of course, we can't do that. I interviewed Alex Tab Iraq just before the Paris attacks. Afterwards, I emailed him here's what he wrote back. My view is that this is less about immigration. Then it is about or we are at war with islamic State and Al Qaeda and other elements in the Middle EAST. Even if we conclude that need to scrutinise young middle eastern men more closely for security reasons, we also ought to recognise our common humanity with the refugees. The refugees are running from the same evil. Death call that attacked us Ices is killed. Many more Muslims and Christians for Europeans MA am as passive, but
LISA Bustle. Isa is a syrian refugee who made it to Germany and its twenty third birthday, but don't so hard very very. extremely hard way across to Greece, to Macedonia to Serbia to Hungary. Austria, Germany, he wasn't ISIS he was running away from it- was the Assad regime but showed us that kills everyday bandy. They slaughter actual kill people with knives, they kill children, they killed babies, elemental, something one of my relative, sir. and his wife and his ball baby one. The year baby Bashar, Al Assad Army burned him with fire five times I was almost a very close to death, want them Gonna hurt, I was gonna, take a bullet from mobile Shahrazad sniper
like I actually heard the sound of the bullet near my head, does like exactly near my ear. I heard that isa and a friend paid smugglers to get them from Turkey across the Mediterranean. He says the entire trip from Turkey to Germany took sixteen days seeding, get much to eat or drink during the trip he slept outside in the cold. The way I came in those up so Koran. I just came here Roma, something over me and my friends, but wary on guys. We can handle everything weaken this day four hours without food weekend ass, they ve been called because worry about some people. They have families and what they have kids. They put some people they have babies. I've seen like miserably things there there is a baby is small. Baby was like five or six months. He was crying
and there is dead, told me that they have problems in his lungs. He can't stay here because it's too called for him and I talk to the hungarian police. They said, ok go about, go about, one go back, you we're here. beings here we're humans, its natural to empathize, with someone like ISA worth any refugee whose fleeing hardship but you can also understand why so many countries are reluctant to accept large numbers of refugees. There are economic reasons, cultural reasons and yes, fear, but it isn't as though we haven't been through this before. Unfortunately, we know exactly how to handle this refugee crisis, because this is not the first time by any means that this is
happened, Michael Clemens, again think back to the hungarian Revolution of nineteen. Fifty six in the space of a few months, two hundred thousand Hungarians fled us if crack down in and around Budapest and ended up across the border in Austria, desperate people fleeing for their lives, one or two things could have happened. They could have been putting camps. They could have been shunted from one country to the other, as everybody played beggar thy neighbor trying to get rid of these people or they could have been assisted by broad coalition of countries around the world. Fortunately, what actually happened is the second one. Thirty seven countries came to either through the? U N and an organisation that later became the international organization for migration. They sat down, they shared responsibility,
for assisting those Hungarians. Broadly, some of them went to the: U S, some to Canada, some stating Austria, some to Germany. Some went to Paraguay. Some, to Colombia, New Zealand all over the world, and because of that sharing, they ended up being massively beneficial to the places they went. The cinematography of ghost sisters was one of them who move to allay as a kid. The founder of Intel Corporation, which probably made the chip in your phone or your computer, was one of them tremendously beneficial, but only because of a choice, and it was the choice to broadly share responses, ready for assisting them? They could have been turned into a burden, just an expense to keep them alive in the camps in dead. They were turned into a resource. In fact gift. That's exactly what Syrians could be.
The numbers involved are not numbers that would overwhelm abroad group of countries. They are numbers that can overwhelm one two or three countries. If other countries don't assistance, places where all of them are ending up and that's what's happening right now, and it's it's a terrible shame, and not just for the migrants, but for the countries that could benefit from as people if they were willing to do what is necessary to turn them into a resource is bitterly ironic that Hungary, which was the source of many Fiji's in living. Memory is turning them away you have by now figured out the many economists, if not most agree that immigration is net positive, absolutely so. The economists this is one of the things on which economists unite Alex Tamerack again, so I think a con
look at the world and they see opportunities for trade. So there's a lot of opportunities for trade between us and residents of the rest of the world and when people from the other parts of the world move here, It's really what's going on. We are allowing them to trade labour for money. So there's plenty of opportunity for mutual gay, and I think economists look around and they see the history of the United States. it's as well as other parts of the world, and they see there's been tremendous immigration into the United States and wages have gone up. Standards of living have gone up So, let's imagine that open borders starts to happen. Walk me through, in your view, how it would work, the immigration itself, the assimilation, all the kind of transactional ends who shoal elements. So if someone
One of the immigration would come to the United States in order an airplane like normal people, do so be much more humane system. Now there are a whole bunch of questions we can start to ass, such as, should the immigrants be allowed to access the welfare system? How difficult would it be to become a citizen, and I'm actually quite ignore stick on those questions. So to me it would be fine to allow immigrants to come in and not give the much cash welfare. I think that would be perfectly moral, so my issue is preventing people from moving. I don't say that We must give them things when they do move here now. What would we see in the United States if this happened? I do think it is fair to say the following. We would see more poverty in
the United States- and I literally may mean that we would see it. But you know out of sight out of mind, is not out of morality, so we would see poverty here, but there would actually be less poverty in the world as a whole to United States would look different, but I dont think that its right to say in order that I to make myself feel good, I don't want to see poverty and in order to solve that problem, I'm going to push the poor people out into another country. That's what I dont think is right
There is one more proposal, also from an economist that might allow more people to come to the: U S without taking the risk of increasing poverty, how these two sides could be more harmony if we just charge a fee for immigration, its Casey Mulligan and AM oppressor and economics at the inertia of Chicago Mulligan. Late colleague, Gary Becker was the one who thought about the idea of an immigration fee. That fee would on one and help cover the costs that the opponents are justly worried about. On the other hand, it would create opportunities for people who haven't I wanna get through our bureaucracy to get american citizenship to raise. The money
and become EU citizen when they want to be one. So what kind of fee was Becker thinking about the example he cited was fifty thousand dollars, although the precise numbers not important. Eventually, of course, you need to find the right Its that's. What economists do you also need to decide how many immigration slots you wanna put up for sale? I think when our country was growing is especially in the nineteenth century. The right price was fairly close to zero. So zero didn't do such a ban job in terms of getting the number of immigrants that was good for the country and good for the immigrants, and then things changed, especially our welfare state grew through massively and zero. Wasn't the right price anymore, and I'm not sure we ever went back and thought through. You know, maybe we should, This maybe somebody's emigrant crises that we have now around the
fraud, will motivate seminar, thinking and a country or try it. and we can see how it works. The fact is that many. It is now or paying thousands of dollars in smuggling fees and bribes when it be better for that money to go directly to their. destination country rather than fuelling the black market. Now I can hear you podcast listeners, the outrage that Fomenting in your brain setting a price on the right to immigrate, it is on American, its unethical, I think there are ethical dilemmas of not doing it is well. I mean there were people who really suffer because We don't let a man and are they can't get through the bureaucratic? who knows that we use in our price equals zero approach to this problem. So what kind of immigrants with this fee based structure appeal to? They might have an advanced agree that could give them a good friend.
shall return after they come to America, but what, if you don't have fifty thousand dollars or whatever it costs to get into America? Gary Becker considered that guide? I think he envision it very much like requiring higher education. That's costly, in fact, a lot more costly than fifty thousand dollars to get, a four year college degree and not to mention the medical degree or a law degree and there's a market there and people get loans. They get assistance, they may have an employer who would like them to have that degree, and so they help finance it. So the market would present a lot of opportunities to to raise that money. The wait a minute when it's just make it easy for terrorists to buy their way into Ark. but I also don't think we should delude ourselves that the price equals zero system that we have now somehow shots out ISIS more than it shuts law, abiding people from Europe,
Africa or Asia, wherever they may be, coming from. Ok. So, even if this doesn't increase the risk of terrorism, isn't this be quickly an invitation for some other country, China. Maybe to buy up all the immigration slots that we ve put up for sale or I would be good news, that would mean that you could set a much higher price. And get a lot more revenue from this than we ever expected? So whenever you're selling something and you have a sell out on the first day. It is a time for celebration at time for adjustment. Yes, by the time for celebration, I don't expect Casey Mulligan, any of the other economies we spoken with today have funding Are we change your views on immigration, our endeavour, your opinions on this issue tend to be pretty well. Fundamental If you see the world in a certain way, then open borders makes sense
economically and morally, at least but as a practical matter, especially as you invoke emotions and that gets turned into politics, it's much more complicated at the very least Thank you for listening in today. As we talk this through one thing, history teaches us, is that our predictions about the future a generally terrible, but if we can collectively push our thinking on hard issues like immigration, just a bit more into the future, we probably stand a slightly better chance of getting on the right side of history before it's too late,
freakin, I'm a radio is produced by W and my C studios ended up near productions. This episode was produced by urban ganja with help from the guard for telling our staff also includes Jake how it merit Jacob Christopher Worth. Gregg resolves geek, catch him high lavish Alison, Hockenberry and Caroline English. If you want more how much radio you can subscribe to respond cast on Itunes or wherever you get your password. Fr Economics dotcom we'll find our entire podcast archive the books, the blog and much more.
Hey there Stephen Double again, one more thing, if you like for economics, radio, I think you'll also like the latest episode of people, I mostly admire the podcast hosted by my free economic, spreading co, author, Steve Levin. Here's what it sounds like a guest today, Sue bird. She collects championships she's for W Nba championships. Five euro, the best about championships to end, see a championships for international Basketball Federation, world cups and four olympic gold medals. I'd like to talk about the economics of professional basketball, so the average player in the NBA made eight point three million dollars into the nineteen, and
in the W Nba, the average with eighty thousand is frustrating just now. I think, actually, if you look at twenty twenty. Our minimum is now higher, but we all put in the same amount of work. So is it hard to swallow, knowing that somebody else's work is being rewarded at times by I live in reality. I understand business and economics. Some people look at us as like charity. They go will will help them out like an it in a terrible. What sense? Not unlike this business Vestment way and we think do look at us as an investment immediately its talked about how we don't make money and it's like fifty years ago in the NBA, did either, but people are willing to make that investment get behind it and growing people. I mostly admire you, can find
on your favorite podcast up either Stephen dubbing again one more thing: if you liked the episode you just heard, we think you like something else in the friggin hammocks radio network. Look for this interview on the new podcast people. I mostly admire with host Steve, let my guest today Sue bird. She collects championships she's for W Nba championships, five euro, the best while championships to end she ate championships for
international basketball Federation World CUPS in four Olympic Gold medal. I would think that, in order to be the player you are, you would have to be a person who actually gets better under pressure rather than worth. Well. Obviously, there are people who are known for heading big. Shots are known for playing while in big gains that exists for sure, but I think we kind of frame it the wrong way. It's not that you're gonna make nine at it. It's that you might make three at a ten but somebody else's making zero it's on whose most successful it's like who's, the most successful the least successful. That is, people mostly admire you can find it on your favorite podcast app subscribe now, so that you don't miss single episode
Transcript generated on 2021-01-29.