No U.S. Population Growth for Six Months?!?!

March 21, 2017

As part of my monthly calculation of the size of the actual labor force (for the purpose of analyzing the monthly employment report), I use the U.S. population as determined by the “Population Clock” on the home page of the U.S. Census Bureau.  As I write this, it stands at 324.73 million.  This figure typically grows at the rate of about 180,000 per month.  That’s a scary rate of population growth.  The U.N. estimates that half of all world population growth by 2050 will be caused by the growth of the population in only eight nations – seven third world nations and – you guessed it – the United States, the only developed nation that continues to experience third-world-like population growth.

But I’ve noticed something strange in the last six months, and especially since the beginning of the year.  In December, the population clock actually fell back by almost 600,000.  Since then, the population has been growing at a rate of only about 80,000 per month.  Today, it stands at almost exactly the same level as it did at the end of September.

This is great news, but I suspect that some of the reason for the slowdown is not good news.  You may recall that sometime back around December, the CDC announced that death rates in the U.S. were rising while life expectancy had actually declined slightly.  But there’s some really great news too.  Illegal immigrants are being deported and the entry of new illegal immigrants has slowed dramatically.  Even legal immigration has slowed since Trump took office.

Although it’s still early in this new trend, a couple of observations are in order:

  • Most economists predict economic gloom and doom to accompany a lack of population growth.  Contrary to that, the U.S. economy has experienced its best growth in many years in the past six months.  A brightening economic outlook is one of the outcomes I predicted in Five Short Blasts that would accompany a stabilizing or even declining U.S. population.
  • A rising death rate is another outcome that I predicted in my book for nations whose population densities continue to grow beyond a critical level, driven by rising unemployment and poverty.

This is all something I’ll be watching closely as immigration continues to slow dramatically during the Trump administration.

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Christian Science Monitor Endorses Immigration Cuts

June 5, 2009

http://www.csmonitor.com/2009/0528/p09s01-coop.html

When a respected publication like the Christian Science Monitor calls for cuts in immigration to slow population growth, it may be time for the administration to sit up and take notice.  

President Obama has encouraged Americans to start laying a new foundation for the country – on a number of fronts. He has stressed that we’ll need to have the courage to make some hard choices. One of those hard choices is how to handle immigration. The US must get serious about the tide of legal and illegal immigrants, above all from Latin America.It’s not just a short-run issue of immigrants competing with citizens for jobs as unemployment approaches 10 percent or the number of uninsured straining the quality of healthcare. Heavy immigration from Latin America threatens our cohesiveness as a nation.

The political realities of the rapidly growing Latino population are such that Mr. Obama may be the last president who can avert the permanent, vast underclass implied by the current Census Bureau projection for 2050.

… Population growth is the principal threat to the environment via natural resource use, sprawl, and pollution. And population growth is fueled chiefly by immigration.

It’s no mystery why the U.S. continues to import people at an alarming rate. Our nation’s leaders take their cues from economists who continue to see population growth as the main driver of economic growth, blind to the relationship between excessive population densities and unemployment and hoping that no one will ask what happens when such a policy inevitably fails, since never-ending population growth is a physical impossibility.  More people means more customers, more sales volume, more corporate profits and – yes- more jobs.  But no one stops to consider whether the growth in jobs keeps pace with the growth in population, resulting in rising unemployment and poverty.  

The Christian Science Monitor can hardly be faulted for not including in their reasoning the cancerous effects upon the economy of a worsening population density, since my fledgling theory has yet to gain widespread acceptance.  It would have been nice if they had also pointed out that rampant population growth also makes the challenges of breaking our dependence on foreign oil and cutting greenhouse gas emissions nearly impossible.  But it’s refreshing that more and more mainstream media are awakening to the perils of our preposterous immigration policies.  


Largest Citizenship Ceremony in St. Louis History

September 22, 2008

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5ieSg49c8sRLlrW4lkUHV328ruxUgD93ACLGG0

It’s not often that I enter a post about legal immigration, probably because it doesn’t make the news much.  That doesn’t change the fact that it’s one of the biggest challenges we face in stabilizing our population.  Every year we admit over 1.1 million new immigrants.  This article describes just one citizenship ceremony in St. Louis at which citizenship was bestowed on 1,000 new immigrants.  That may sound like a big deal until you realize that, on average, there are three such ceremonies somewhere in the U.S. every day, day-in and day-out, year after year.  Every day we exacerbate our dependence on foreign oil by adding 3,000 more oil consumers.  Every day we add 3,000 more carbon emitters.  Every day we add about 1,500 more to our labor force, even as the number of jobs declines.  This makes absolutely no sense.  We have far too many serious problems to continue doing this kind of thing just because it makes us feel all warm and fuzzy to hear new citizens speak so highly of their adopted country. 

We can be proud of our immigrant roots and our history as a beacon of hope for the downtrodden.  But the mathematical reality is that we can’t keep doing this unless we ourselves want to be trampled by the effects of overpopulation.  Then we’ll be a beacon of hope for no one, not even our own citizens.  It’s time to hang a “no vacancy” sign on that statue in New York harbor.


Judge Rejects H-1B Visa Injunction

September 8, 2008

http://yro.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=08/08/16/1222219

The above link was sent to me by loyal follower Brian.  My apologies to Brian for not posting this sooner.  (I was in the north woods at the time.)  The news is a little old, but no less noteworthy. 

It seems that a federal judge ruled against the Programmers’ Guild, siding with the Department of Homeland Security, who wanted to afford foreign “students” the right to remain continuously in the U.S. for 2-1/2 years after graduation, robbing U.S. workers of highly paid programming work.  It seems that the judge couldn’t see how increasing the labor supply would result in lower wages for American workers.

Unbelievable!  I have often been very critical of economists who are unwilling to look past their noses at the consequences of overpopulation – a labor force that rises faster than consumption, driving up unemployment and poverty.  But at least economists do understand the law of supply and demand, and that a rising supply will depress the price of any given commodity.  It seems inconceivable that a judge, a supposedly intelligent, educated person, could be incapable of grasping something that even an economist can understand!

Is that really the problem, or is it a matter of yielding to the indirect influence of corporations, the benefactors of the administration that appointed this judge, eager to assure that their labor force is kept in a constant state of oversupply? 

As I said in Five Short Blasts, this is where the work to scale back our ridiculous rate of immigration needs to begin, with dramatically cutting the number of foreign students and the number of temporary workers, thus cutting off the “non-immigrant visa” pipeline that feeds the supply of “legal permanent residents.”  (See Figure 9-4 on page 180 of the book.) 

Thanks, Brian!  Keep us informed if you see more of this.


Five Short Blasts – Some feedback on the theory

March 28, 2008

I’m out in Los Angeles at an annual conference that I attend regarding our enterprise trucking software for our intermodal trucking division. We had many presenters, one of which was a VP from the Port of Los Angeles talking about all the various upcoming projects (which will result in more tariffs), new “clean air” initiatives, etc. There are many industry experts and many leading intermodal trucking companies represented and since all we (the intermodal trucking companies) deal with are imports/exports I couldn’t be closer to a source of “economic impact” if I wanted to. Needless to say, at lunch and dinner I got into some interesting economic discussions related to what we do. Everything from illegal immigrant drivers, outsourcing, lack of labor pool in the U.S., etc. I presented your theory (or at least parts of it) and got some interesting (as always) responses that I felt compelled to share with you. As always any comments are appreciated.

 

1.       At dinner everyone at my table argued that there are not people in the U.S. that would do the jobs that we have these “illegal” or legal immigrants doing (farming, McDonald’s, and Hotel Room cleaners were some of their examples). Even at much higher wages which I was certain to point out. They were absolutely adamant that regardless of the wages (reasonable obviously) people simply would NOT do that type of work. I remember you being very adamant that people WOULD in fact do these jobs for better wages.

2.       The 2nd common theme was that there are simply not enough technically proficient people (we were talking specifically IT) in the U.S. labor pool. I’ve been hearing this a lot lately and apparently Bill Gates agrees. http://www.workforce.com/section/00/article/25/41/45.html

3.       Lastly, a couple of the people I talked to agreed or could understand that “as population densities increase, per-capita consumption declines”; however they said that this only applied to places like China or India and doesn’t apply to the United States. An example one of them used was that of Manhattan, New York. He said that there is a lot of money there and people buy more “stuff” than you can imagine. Apparels was one specific example I remember. I found this to be interesting as it didn’t occur to him or concern him that we could very easily become a China or India.
 

Again I simply wanted to share this experience. As an aside my best friend (who is a Mortgage Officer) borrowed my copy of “Five Short Blasts” many months ago and has finally got around to reading it. He has called me on multiple occasions and conveyed his interest and acceptance of this theory. It was definitely a wake-up call or at least an exercise in awareness for him and he said he was going to read it again.

-Brian D.


Link to NumbersUSA Added

November 30, 2007

I have added a link on the right side of the page that will take you to NumbersUSA, a web site dedicated to immigration reform, but reform that goes far beyond the debate about illegal immigration.  Here you’ll find a very thorough, rational, non-xenophobic treatise on the need to dramatically reduce immigration in order to stem our growing problem with over-population, one of the key recommendations of my book.  Check it out and tell your friends about the site!

Pete