Thursday, May 11, 2023

John Oliver on 'Biden & The Border' and FiveThirtyEight on immigration for the end of Title 42

The public health emergencies in response to the pandemic end today. One of those emergency responses is Title 42, which turned away undocumented immigrants, including legal asylum seekers, at the border as a public health measure. That ends today, too. I'm sharing two examinations of this situation, beginning with John Oliver's Biden & The Border from April 30, 2023.

John Oliver discusses the things Biden has promised to fix about our southern border, what he has and hasn’t done, and a magnificent pile of gators.
The anecdote that people working in the White House expressed relief when the courts blocked the lifting of Title 42 reminds me that a major reason Democratic leaners do not identify with the Democratic Party is frustration with the party’s leaders over inability to accomplish campaign promises and other Democratic agenda times. This story serves as an example of that and adds an extra layer of insufficient commitment to lifting the restrictions as well.

I also found comparing the asylum appointment app to Ticketmaster to be appropriately apt and insulting. I like it better than what first came to my mind, trying to get into the virtual queue for a hot new ride at Disney World through Genie+. I think more people have had bad experiences with Ticketmaster.

That was the comedic examination of the issue. Now for a serious one from FiveThirtyEight, Where The Immigration Debate Stands Today | FiveThirtyEight Politics Podcast.

Title 42 is expiring on Thursday night, a pandemic-era rule allowing the U.S. government to turn away asylum seekers at the border as a public health measure. This comes at a time when apprehensions at the border are already at record highs and Americans give President Biden some of his lowest ratings on his handling of immigration.

According to Gallup, Americans say immigration is the third-biggest problem facing the country, behind the economy and poor leadership. And the number who say that the level of immigration in the U.S. should be decreased has doubled to 40 percent since Biden took office.

In this installment of the FiveThirtyEight Politics podcast, Galen speaks with Georgetown economics professor Anna Maria Mayda about what Americans think of immigration and why, its impacts on the U.S. and its politics, and how that compares with other countries.
Listening to the effects of immigration on wages, employment, local government, and the economy reminds me of a paragraph from CNBC asks 'Is The U.S. Running Out Of People?' that I recycled in Samantha Bee was prepared for the overturning of Roe v. Wade.
[I]f not enough babies are born in the U.S. to meet our job demand, the country can allow more immigration. I'm O.K. with that, but Donald Trump became president in large part because many Americans weren't and still aren't. That's why, when one of my students asked in 2015 if the U.S. would ever adopt Chinese population policies, I responded no, that's not the American way. If the U.S. thinks it has an overpopulation issue, it would restrict immigration. The next week, Trump rode down the escalator and denounced immigrants. This is one of those cases where I hate being proved right.
If increasing immigration is not an acceptable solution, then increasing the U.S. birth rate would be.
That will alleviate labor shortages in the medium-to-long-term. It would not help with the current one. An apparent short-term solution is allowing more child labor; I expressed my disapproval in Fox News didn't have to apologize, so 'The Late Show with Stephen Colbert' did it for them.
I think relaxing child labor laws is not a good way to deal with a labor shortage. I prefer raising wages and improving working conditions so more adults will return to the workforce. Instead, Iowa has joined Arkansas and several other states in permitting teens to work more. I find that worrisome and a reversal of a century of progress.
That's a clear set of choices — increased legal immigration, improved wages and work conditions, or more child labor. I'm with Professor Mayda that the choices should be made clear to voters, whether French or American. I may disapprove of the eventual choice, but at least the voters will have made their decision consciously and explicitly instead of blundering into it. Also, everyone will know what their priorities really are.

Enough of this serious topic for today. Stay tuned for a retrospective of the blog's year on Twitter tomorrow for Flashback Friday.

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