Monday, May 22, 2006

Watch Economists deal with the Immigration Issue

"Public Affairs," features Economics Professors Bleakley and Chiswick tonight [May 22] through-out the City of Chicago on CANTV, Cable Ch. 21 at 8:30 pm; You can also watch the program right now, and anytime after, on the "Public Affairs," podcast page on your computer [See here].

The "Public Affairs," podcast page gives you a choice of more than 20 different episodes of “Public Affairs," in addition to the show with Professors Chiswick and Bleakley.[See here]. The podcast page also includes a show with Kevin White, the Republican nominee for the 5th Cong. Dist. seat currently held by Cong. Rahm Emanuel (D-Chicago) [the show with White is also airing this on the suburban edition of "Public Affairs,"], Mayoral Candidate Bill Dock Walls, State Senate Republican Nominee [27th Dist.] Matt Murphy; a recent joint press conference with Senator Obama [D-Illinois] and Congresswoman Bean [D-Barrington][See here].
Professor Barry Chiswick, Distinguished Professor of Economics, University of Illinois at Chicago and Professor Hoyt Bleakley, Professor of Economics at the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business, answer a barrage of questions about immigration on the "Public Affairs," program from show host and executive legal recruiter Jeff Berkowitz *****************************************************
See here for a partial transcript and more about the show.
This program is very timely. As everyone knows, immigration is the issue du jour for most national politicians. For the Republican Party, it very well is the make or break issue. If the Bush Administration and the Republicans in Congress get this right, it would most likely mean that they will maintain control of the House and Senate and have a chance to salvage the last two years of the Bush Administration, which could lead to four or eight more years of a Republican President and a Republican Congress.

This might be the case for the Republicans even if they do not get it right on spending restraint, don't figure out how to stabilize Iraq and don't come up with a clean way of dealing with Iran and North Korea. That is, the public might give the Republicans a pass, at least for 2006 and maybe for 2008, even if they have to muddle through spending and foreign policy issues [so long as Iran and North Korea do not become greater problems in terms of national security] - and so long as the Republicans are given credit for tackling and providing a long term solution for the immigration issue.

The real point to be made about immigration is that we need to make some rational choices about the kinds of skills we would like our immigrants to have, and which countries possess the immigrants to supply those skills. It does seem, as Charles Krauthammer points out here, that the Bushies don't quite get it, as to the importance of a wall for border enforcement. Sensible border enforcement, i.e., a wall, allows the United to choose the kinds of immigrants it wants: low skilled, high skilled, or somewhere in between. Of course, with more high skilled labor coming in to compete, the losers and winners might be different than is now the case, which the politicians will have to sort out.

But, surely, our country should try to make a rational choice, as opposed to letting the relative performance of the economies in Mexico and the U. S. combine with the composition of the labor force in the two countries to make the choice of whom we should allow to enter the U. S.

There you go, I have solved the problem right there. Next question.
Jeff Berkowitz, Show Host/Producer of "Public Affairs," and Executive Legal Recruiter doing legal search can be reached at