Rampant population growth threatens our economy and quality of life. Immigration, both legal and illegal, are fueling this growth.
I’m not talking just about the obvious problems that we see in the news – growing dependence on foreign oil, carbon emissions, resource shortages, soaring commodity prices, environmental degradation, etc. I’m talking about the effect upon rising unemployment and poverty in America.
As explained in Five Short Blasts: A New Economic Theory Exposes The Fatal Flaw in Globalization and Its Consequences for America, as population density rises beyond some optimum level, per capita consumption of products begins to decline out of the need to conserve space. People who live in crowded conditions simply don’t have enough space to use and store many products. This declining per capita consumption, in the face of rising productivity (per capita output, which always rises), inevitably yields rising unemployment and poverty.
This theory has huge implications for U.S. policy toward population management, especially immigration policy. Our policies of encouraging high rates of immigration are rooted in the belief of economists that population growth is a good thing, fueling economic growth. Through most of human history, the interests of the common good and business (corporations) were both well-served by continuing population growth. For the common good, we needed more workers to man our factories, producing the goods needed for a high standard of living. This population growth translated into sales volume growth for corporations. Both were happy.
But, once an optimum population density is breached, their interests diverge. It is in the best interest of the common good to stabilize the population, avoiding an erosion of our quality of life through high unemployment and poverty. However, it is still in the interest of corporations to fuel population growth because, even though per capita consumption goes into decline, total consumption still increases. We now find ourselves in the position of having corporations and economists influencing public policy in a direction that is not in the best interest of the common good.
For example, consider Japan. Their average dwelling is less than a third the size of the average American’s, simply because it is far too crowded for people to have decent-sized homes – they are ten times as densely populated as the U.S. But, because they are ten times as densely populated, and in spite of the fact that their per capita dwelling space is one third of ours, their total dwelling space is three times what it would be if they were no more densely populated than the U.S. Therefore, if you are a Japanese citizen, it is in your best interest to reduce your population, affording you the luxury of living in a larger home and increasing the percentage of the labor force that is employed in the construction of home and in the manufacture of housing materials.
On the other hand, if you are a Japanese corporation engaged in manufacturing housing or materials, it’s in your best interest to encourage never-ending population growth, because your total sales volume will still rise, even though per capita consumption may decline. This is why our government pursues policies that encourage population growth – because corporations and economists believe that it’s in our best interest. It was at one time, but no longer.
The U.N. ranks the U.S. with eight other countries – India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Bangladesh, Uganda, Ethiopia and China – as accounting for fully half of the world’s population growth by 2050. The U.S. is the only developed country still experiencing third world-like population growth, most of which is due to immigration. It’s absolutely imperative that our population be stabilized, and that’s impossible without dramatically reining in immigration, both legal and illegal. It’s time to halt illegal immigration and deport those already here. And it’s time to reduce legal immigration from over one million per year to about 50,000, matching the rate of emigration and eliminating immigration from the population growth equation.
Author, Five Short Blasts