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Socialite Cordelia Scaife May Spent Her Fortune Trying to Keep Immigrants Out (nytimes.com)
47 points by georgecmu 68 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 77 comments

It seems like many now-popular movements had deep-pocketed sponsors.

Can a billion dollars always push an idea into the mainstream? Or are there counterexamples of groups who poured huge amounts of money into promoting something that never caught on?

Money does seem to be the only way to get even a hint of policy change from Washington, but the trend line of public opinion is opposite of what you suggest. Until around 1995, immigration restriction was overwhelmingly mainstream in the United States and still commands a strong plurality.


I'd further point out that the overwhelming majority of the moneyed interests still stack up on the side of permissive immigration policies. It is, after all, capital that benefits from a global free market for labor and an expanded consumer base. It's just about the only thing the Koch brothers and Soros can agree on.

The difference is that traditional chamber of commerce GOP types would hold back the anti-immigration stuff because it killed unions and made their mainstream donors happy. Your chicken slaughterhouse in the middle of Nebraska prospers with underpaid illegals who don’t get workers compensation.

The big money, big ideology people poured money into hard right conservatism. Investing in and advertising on talk radio being one key strategy. Your average blue collar worker/trucker/etc has been indoctrinated with conservative blather for 30 years.

All I have to say about that is if you think everyone's being indoctrinated except you, you're probably wrong.

Of course. I think he has a good point though, that much of the centre-right discourse pays lip service to nationalism while supporting free-trade and minimal control on immigration. So many who would consider themselves to be anti-immigration end up voting for parties which support wholesale immigration in the interest of big business.

I suspect most people are voting for parties who have policies they don't support. The small-government people are often in a similar boat, for example. Or the hard-core environmentalists.

If the consensus position is broad-scale immigration is a good idea (which seems to be solidly the case in English-speaking politics) then voters who don't like immigration are out of luck.

Didn’t say that.

When I worked on the farm in the 90s, the classic rock in the barn was swapped out for Rush every afternoon. When I go back home, it’s pretty much the same, except most of the farms are out of business.

If you’re from a white collar, suburban background, you just can’t understand. Most media is New York/LA centric, and conservative outlets reject that.

I'm not, actually. My own father was one of those three hours a day dittoheads.

It's easy to identify propaganda in microcosm, it's harder to see the same thing writ large. I find that most white collar suburbanites I meet have a great number of received opinions and rarely examine the sources of such.

Could be I just misinterpreted your comment.

I kept reading this and thinking, "Doesn't Rush count as classic rock???" Then I read the sub-comment and saw a reference to 'ditto-heads'. Ugh ok. I wouldn't enjoy an afternoon of Rush or Rush for that matter....

>I'd further point out that the overwhelming majority of the moneyed interests still stack up on the side of permissive immigration policies. It is, after all, capital that benefits from a global free market for labor

George Soros does not, to my knowledge, employ a large number of low-wage workers- how would he personally benefit from a larger labor pool? The Koch brothers do have a very large workforce, but they're all industrial assets- hard to imagine farm laborer-types from Central America could be employed in huge numbers. The only people who could conceivably benefit from immigrant labor would be industries with huge huge numbers of minimum or close to minimum-wage employees- Home Depot, Chipotle, Subway etc. I guess Amazon.

Seeing as we have a federal minimum wage- how much money could an evil billionaire who employs thousands of unskilled workers possibly save with a larger labor pool? $1 per hour, per worker? $2 per hour? I find the amount of cost savings they'd get to be not that much- you'd think Evil Billionaire would put way more effort into healthcare reform, given that non-wage benefits are (much much much) more expensive than a few dollars per hour.

Saying 'the labor pool' is handwavey. Outside of a few industries, developed countries have mostly outsourced unskilled work to the 3rd world- so, if a bunch of farm laborer-types with a 6th grade education come here, they're not competing with the huge huge majority of skilled US workers. There is no affect on wages for most workers, and no motivation for really any white collar employer. I find your hypothesis unconvincing

>The only people who could conceivably benefit from immigrant labor would be industries with huge huge numbers of minimum or close to minimum-wage employees- Home Depot, Chipotle, Subway etc. I guess Amazon.

It’s the farms

Just look at the latest big raid: chicken farms

In California César Chavez was against illegal immigration because the farms would use immigrants to break the unions

Don’t know exactly what Soros and the Kochs do, I’m guessing they don’t exactly employ people but own companies that sell things to people

One of the illustrative point is also that some present day Democrat presidential candidates and legislators just 4-5 years ago were against increased immigration and open borders. Listen to what Sanders has to say about "open borders": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vf-k6qOfXz0 he is not just slightly against it, he is quite upset by the idea altogether.

No one in public office or campaign for it supports “oprn borders”, it's only deployed as a strawman of opposite candidates (or sometimes an attack on a real or also strawman position outside of declared candidates) to define oneself against. And, yeah, it's not uncommon for people who have used the strawman to have it used against them. It's not a sign of flip-flopping unless you can find someone endorsing open borders after having criticized it, something essentially no candidate does (certainly no Democratic Presidential candidate, all of whom have called for strengthening border security and continuing to enforce policies limiting total legal immigration, while disagreeing with the particular policies and practices pursued by the current administration.)

Isn't straw man.

Kamala Harris has called for defacto open borders, same with Julian Castro.

She literally said during the debate no one gets deported, and crossing illegally would be a civil penalty, aka jay walking ticket.

You can argue the pros and cons, but clearly she and some of the other candidates are calling for de facto open borders.

> Isn't straw man.

Yes, it is. Specifically, it's most commonly a strawman applied to people who disagree with the speakers’ preferred methods of enforcing immigration law while still supporting the principle of limited legal immigration. As you demonstrate.

> Kamala Harris has called for defacto open borders

No, she hasn't. She's called for decriminalizing crossing outside of designated border crossings (not “crossing illegally”, as there are other illegal crossings—such as crossing at a designated border crossing with false documentation—which is also criminal and she has not called for decriminalizing), but also for continuing to enforce immigration law with civil rather than criminal process (which includes continued use of deportation, which is itself a civil rather than criminal sanction.) This is not open borders, de facto or otherwise.

> same with Julian Castro.

Well, it's the same in that the claim is also not true of Castro, who explicitly called for monitoring and retaining civil penalties for illegal entry and presence including the selective use of deportation, alongside supporting decriminalization of crossing outside designated crossings and assuring that asylum seekers get the hearings they are entitled to under the law.

> She literally said during the debate no one gets deported

No, she literally did not.

> and crossing illegally would be a civil penalty, aka jay walking ticket.

Civil process includes sanctions much more severe than jay walking tickets, including deportation.

You can have your own opinion but doesn't make it a fact. What is a fact is what she said on national TV less than two months ago:

"Harris said people should not be deported if their only offense is living in the United States without documents." https://www.politico.com/story/2019/06/28/democratic-debate-...

Coming across would not be a crime. So as long as a person did not commit a crime, they get to stay. that is defacto open borders. It can't get much more clear than that.

you can argue if that is a good or bad thing, but that is what she is for, she said it very clearly.

> I'd further point out that the overwhelming majority of the moneyed interests still stack up on the side of permissive immigration policies. It is, after all, capital that benefits from a global free market for labor and an expanded consumer base.

For low wage jobs maybe, but doctors have fought very hard to minimize foreign trained competition being allowed to work in the US.

This is the fantastic irony of the completely false dichotomy that the public imagines mainstream politics to be. The modern left seems to paradoxically be supporting open-borders _and_ worker's rights. Normally I would further qualify that statement by attributing such sentiments to the _far_ left, but this seems to be a fairly mainstream position based upon what we saw in the Democratic Primary debates recently. I find it difficult to believe that a pro-trade union candidate like Bernie Sanders does not understand the basic laws of supply/demand: How a supply of cheap labour affects the wages of the individual employee. I'm in my early 30s and I came of age immersed in the counter-culture of the 90s. Nihilistic Industrial rock decrying the emergence of free-trade and a globalised economy was the left wing soundtrack of the age. Now the far-left seems to be wholesale pro free movement of people and capital. I would accuse the masses expecting that this will not have a negative impact on the financial well-being of the individual of absolute foolishness, but it seems that many proponents of such policies are no longer expecting them to be feasible within the framework of social-democracy. Instead opting for much more collectivist forms of government.

> I find it difficult to believe that a pro-trade union candidate like Bernie Sanders does not understand the basic laws of supply/demand: How a supply of cheap labour affects the wages of the individual employee.

This interview would indicate that he understands that, and wants to restrict immigration for that very reason: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vf-k6qOfXz0

Edit: The interview is from 2015, so it may be that his understanding has 'evolved' since.

( Without watching said interview, I'm in the office and don't have headphones ) Did Sanders not indicate his support for decriminalisation of illegal border crossing in the primaries? I would hardly take that as an endorsement of restricting immigration.

Not necessarily no.

Most border crossings aren't even prosecuted. https://trac.syr.edu/immigration/reports/520/

Increasing the number of them being prosecuted places a massive burden on the court system and results in the various unjust scenarios we have today. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/19/us/border-immigration-cou...

There isn't any evidence that criminalization decreases the number of border crossings either. https://www.oig.dhs.gov/assets/Mgmt/2015/OIG_15-95_May15.pdf

Indeed, immigration levels haven't decreased under trump despite the massive increase in prosecutions.

Given this, it isn't absurd to think that other approaches would be at least as effective at controlling immigration in practice.

Simple border crossing was not a criminal act then in the first place.

I imagine a lot of people see the American right literally throwing children into internment camps and don't really think much further than "let's do the opposite of that".

As neetdeth's poll shows, it doesn't matter what the people think - immigration continues regardless. Even under Trump, legal immigration remains at near-record levels.

I'm not sure why you can't be pro-workers and support less restrictive borders. The issue of immigrants being paid less is one easily solved by ensuring that immigrants, legal or not, have to be paid the exact same amount as any US citizen. Then you aggressively punish companies (and not the workers) whom choose to violate this law.

The only reason why it's 'cheap' labour is because traditionally immigrant labor has been used for things that either Americans won't do (due to low pay) or through corporations not being punished. This situation is why H-1B abuse is prevalent among certain companies: They hold the deportation card over immigrants, which then gives them market leverage to pay them less by having them fear losing or switching jobs.

This is an issue paradoxically supported by the modern right, because it's usually farmers and larger corporations that benefit the most. The fixes that the modern right realistically want is the ability to eliminate minimum wage and further destroy workers rights because it makes labor cheaper which in turn boosts profits.

> It's just about the only thing the Koch brothers and Soros can agree on.

Is that really true?

To me, both Soros and the Kochs seem to be somewhat close to classical liberalism. Mostly free people, mostly free markets, etc.

As such, to me, they to have more in common with one another than either has to the Trump crowd or the Sanders/Warren/AOC crowd.

My understanding of Soros and the Kochs is somewhat low resolution, so I would be happy to be corrected on whatever I am not seeing here.

You're not wrong at all. The major point of departure between the two is the role of government and the welfare state - Soros being more of a social democrat and the Kochs doctrinaire libertarians.

Now that US politics are going through a realignment, the two are becoming as chummy as they were always destined to be. The demonization from both sides was mostly kayfabe.

> Until around 1995, immigration restriction was overwhelmingly mainstream in the United States and still commands a strong plurality.

Popular opposition does not look like it had much of an effect on immigration rate [1]. One might even call the policy un-democratic.

[1] https://cis.org/Report/Immigrants-United-States, Figure 1

Once you polarize people enough, all it takes is enough money to get an idea supported by a politician on one side.

The “other” side will attack all of the points weaknesses and then, because people don’t have the ability to just say “yes, this idea associated with my party is both expensive and stupid” it will be defended instead. Often by just a few people who like to argue.

But the defense makes it appear that people in the party support the idea, which then further solidifies the concept in the base as the back and forth continues. At best you will hope to work out the bad ideas via primaries and debates, but sometimes a bad idea that’s popular is going to hold on because voters often care more about how they feel than math.

Plenty of rich people have blown a lot of cash trying and failing to get elected to office.

Of course, they succeed sometimes too, but it turns out that money is no guarantee.

Depends on what constitutes a group and how broadly you define "something". Does Google+ count? Any of the dozen or so spring football leagues? Plenty of movies. Jai-Alai? If we restrict "something" to politics and social movements, opposition to H1B visas has been going on since the program started but with a few minor hickups, it has become increasingly entrenched. Perhaps the grassroots money isn't in the same order of magnitude but it's also not big to sneeze at either.

There are probably a few startups with multi-million dollars that weren't able to get themselves "caught on," and that's with initial traction, so the threshold is at least higher than that.

Successful popular movements are almost always led by elite class traitors. It's been like that at least since the Populares.

Nativism is not new.

When someone moves from the 3rd world to the US, their CO2 footprint grows enormously. Mass immigration is hugely disruptive to stable job and family formulation. It seems to be supported by mainly by two groups in the US, one that wants cheap exploitable labor, and one that wants to shift American politics by changing the demographics.

If you want to prevent the formation of a pool of cheap exploitable immigrant labor, there are two ways. The best would be to prevent immigrants from entering, but that's impossible. The second best is to make sure that those who enter have the same freedoms and protections as native born workers, so that unscrupulous employers can't take advantage of them (house cleaners paid below minimum wage, H-1B tech employees paid under the table, chicken processing plants [0]).

0: https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2019/08/09/poultry-in...

> The best would be to prevent immigrants from entering, but that's impossible.

'Impossible' is a very strong word for something many countries manage just fine. Unless you define 'prevent' as "no immigrant ever enters, even if only to be deported the next day".

But there's a third way - prosecute those unscrupulous employers. If only their lobbying money wasn't in the way...

Which countries manage just fine? Do those countries’ neighbors have substantially lower performing economies?

Europe has managed to significantly reduce the influx of immigrants from the middle east - as has Israel.

I'm sure there are a great many factors involved in the "reduction" (not prevention) than their own efforts. Examples being, those with opportunity already did so, the Syrian conflict winding down, or ISIS uprooted.

There’s also a third group, who believes that if someone’s country has become unlivable (e.g., Honduras today), the United States of America would be honored to have them.

/s/, descendant of Potato Famine Irish Immigrants

What quantity of people are you talking about exactly, and what price are you willing for poor black/Hispanic/white people with only high school degrees to pay in low-skilled labor competition, in order to assuage your racial guilt?

Do you have any idea what has happened to the wages for non-skilled labor since the 1970s? While you and I may have nice cushy jobs and live in nice houses, the largest employer in this country is Walmart. Most people in this country don't have college degrees. They are poor, and mass immigration has made them poorer, and continues to make them poorer.

A lot of the "Abolish ICE" support comes from people in highly gentrifying areas of the country, living in cities that are in the process of driving out their historic minority residents from their homes to go live in the Midwest, all to make way for wealthier white people. Not that this would be your situation, of course! But it can make that sort of person's cheap grace very cheap indeed.

I live in Washington, DC, where I own a house in a neighborhood that was ranked as the hottest market in the country a couple years ago. So, I’m one of those privileged coastal elites who lived in a highly gentrifying area.

That gentrifying neighborhood is also home to DC’s Central American diaspora. My daughter’s classmates’ families fled violence in Honduras and El Salvador (both in the 80s and now, with renewed unrest).

I’m also from rural Iowa, lived on a farm during the 80s farm crisis until my dad threw in the towel. I go back regularly. I have a very personal understanding of rural depopulation and economic stagnation.

Your accusation of cheap grace is indeed cheap. You want real grace? Love thy neighbor, every one of them. Do you have any idea what life is like in San Pedro Sula?

What do you want me to say? That you're going to heaven by taking the bread out of poor black people's mouths in order to help Hondurans? I don't think it works that way. You aren't making any personal sacrifice whatsoever here. You're just hectoring people about neighbor-loving while you get rich and they get poorer.

And if your interest in immigration is especially asylum law, I would be extremely worried about the people now deploying asylum fraud as a mass immigration wedge. It's going to wind up hurting the people who need it the most, and in fact already has.

I don't think 'mass immigration' is to blame for wage depression post-1970s, considering that era also consisted in the destruction of workers rights, unionization and considerable increase in corporate bargaining power.

This also ignore two other big parts of the picture: The fact that in the pre-1970s America still had historically high immigration with the same complaints you bring up now (that the 'dirty' Irish for example were poor, uneducated and a drain on society) just with different color slapped on top. New York was quite literally a city of immigrants.

And then you have automation, which means even if you were to completely stop all immigration would mean the loss of jobs as companies further reduce their bottom line.

I'm not a fan of this sort of historical revisionism where the history of immigration in the US is sort of paved over to make way for new fears of immigrants destroying the fabric of society somehow.

What makes Honduras/Guatemala/Salvador increasingly "unliveable" is (1) the flight of its most industrious people to the US, and (2) the resulting indebtedness of those smuggled to the gangs that smuggle them and arrange illegal, subminimum-wage, off-the-books employment for them.

Persistence of the status quo flow of illegal entrants would doom the Triangle countries forever.

I need a source on the disruption of stable jobs claim.

I support immigration because my ancestors were immigrants, and I believe others deserve the same opportunity.

I’m a third group: Americans that believe in freedom and liberty, that America is a free country, and that everyone regardless of their race, origin, or class can come here and pursue their happiness like the rest of us.

Wow, I’m surprised by the downvotes. I thought the American dream would be more accepted here. These principles used to be considered basic foundational ideology of the USA.

What is the numerical upper limit to your goodwill?

And what about the current citizens who are relatively poorer off because off high number of low skilled new immigrant arrivals? Does a nation not owe more to its current citizens?

I also worry about immigrants taking jobs from citizens. What’s the point of helping a new group of people get jobs if it means taking away jobs from other people. But it turns out that the new group of people actually creates more jobs than they take.

> When labor supply rises, Econ 101 says that wages fall, right? Wrong. The problem with this kind of approach is that it ignores the dynamic nature of the US economy.

Source: https://www.hoover.org/research/economic-effect-immigration

Immigration shouldn’t be about helping, but about letting people help themselves by being productive members of their new society

Certain sectors of the economy are experiencing shortages - of course that just means people are not willing to pay the price that citizens charge: https://www.sfgate.com/business/article/A-catastrophic-trend...

Wonder how many nativists will end up cared for by immigrant caregivers

I read through your link, it's a cleverly written piece with very little to support its conclusions.

> Empirical studies of immigration’s effect on national economies confirm the general impact shown in the third chart. A review by David Card in 2007 concluded that “more than two decades of research on the local labor market impacts of immigration have reached a near consensus that increased immigration has a small but discernible negative effect on the relative (emphasis in original) wages of low-skilled native workers” but also a small, positive overall effect.

So in effect, more or less neutral, then?

> In the face of the reality that average wage levels are not negatively affected, one counterpoint is that the impact differs among skill levels (i.e., that low-skill migrants depress wages for native low-skill workers)

So that means, that low skill immigration which is the bigger chunk of all immigration, is at best neutral and most likely hurts wages? It is the high skill immigration which helps.

> National and even state economies are much more dynamic than simple theory

Just asserts a wishful thinking and concludes on this, doesn't really put any numbers to support this.

All of this from your own link.

I have done additional research, and I am reconsidering my opinion. It is always hard to adjust one’s position on charged topics. Your post’s tone did not make it easier. But I try hard not to be fair and objective, even when I don’t like it.

There isn’t a numerical upper limit. A job isn’t property that can be owned and stolen from you. You’re presenting a false dichotomy on top of a false premise. And it’s not goodwill, it’s a matter of principle and ethics.

An immigrant can’t take jobs from citizens, since jobs aren’t property owned by citizens. Jobs are trades (an agreement, a relationship) between two people. Do I really need to explain that a job isn’t an entitlement you get for being a citizen? I think you know this.

No matter how many immigrants come here, they can’t steal the fruits of your labor. Immigrants aren’t reaching into your bank account and taking your money.

I assume this article was written because of proposed changes to the green card system hinted at earlier this week.

It may be my own bias showing, but is there ever a reason to offer some person permanent residency in the country when you know they will need to go on public assistance right away?

> It may be my own bias showing, but is there ever a reason to offer some person permanent residency in the country when you know they will need to go on public assistance right away?

Every single immigrant visa category in the US immigration system is based on something that has been specifically deemed by the Congress as a reason to offer people admission, permanent residency, and ultimately citizenship in the United States.

So, yes.

You're just using the law as a proxy for correctness. 180 years ago a similar argument would have said that black people should be chattel because the law says that they should be and Congress passed those laws.

Because permanent residency shouldn't be a privilege granted only to the relatively wealthy.

Most Americans aren't relatively wealthy, but also aren't on food stamps or other public programs.

As of July 1, 2016, over 80 million Americans, nearly a quarter of the population, was enrolled in Medicaid. [0] (Because someone qualified for other means-tested assistance will almost always also qualify for Medicaid, that's a pretty good rough estimate, though still a lower bound, for the total aid-receiving population at that point in time.)

[0] https://data.medicaid.gov/widgets/x3sw-xby3

Okay, so most Americans are not on public assistance. That seems to agree with what I said.

Do you have to be wealthy to not need public assistance?

This is your occasional reminder that a lot of the “Mexican” “Immigrants” our president hates so much are the descendants of the people who were already here when Europeans came here.

paywall breach: http://archive.is/RRKEH

On a recent Vox Weeds episode there was mention made of the environmental movement's early connections to eugenics, sterilization and population control, and how national parks weren't so altruistic when it came to native populations and local population subsistence. I have also heard opinions in the past that environmentalism in its 20th century forms was really just a white culture concept of aesthetics. I can imagine that if you scratch deep enough there's lots of dark stuff there.

Up until the green revolution population control was of great concern. The PRC took that to heart and introduced the 1CPF policy.

It’s arguable that this policy while very cruel and unjustly applied and which resulted in skewed gender demographics, had allowed China to prosper quicker than otherwise. On the other hand, in 20-30 years they will face a severe shortage of working age people. But they are autocrats so they may be able to manage that via central policies.

If you sincerely believe that the earth cannot support a large population of humans that live unsustainable lifestyles, your most logical conclusion will probably be to find ways to reduce it. However, we know now that as a country gets wealthier, it’s fertility rate also decreases rapidly. So perhaps instead of trying to fix the problem by eliminating humans we can try to make other societies prosper and let socioeconomic factors take care of the problem.

>I have also heard opinions in the past that environmentalism in its 20th century forms was really just a white culture concept of aesthetics

this is phrased so strangely that i can't tell what it's supposed to mean. environmentalism was long intertwined with romantic thought and philosophy, and obviously until the second half of the 20th century did not carry the eschatological urgency of climate change. environmentalism as we've inherited it is largely a european and american development so it perhaps shouldn't be surprising that it is associated with white people, but i can't tell if the implication is supposed to be some kind of indictment of it.

Don't like to see overpopulation being conflated with immigration again, because...

Overpopulation is obviously a problem; immigration maybe or maybe not (case-by-case each country decides).

Overpopulation is from people being born; not from people crossing borders. No humans are created or destroyed in the act of emigration or immigration.

Overpopulation, nobody wants to talk about; immigration, everybody wants to talk about.

How does that square with many western nations whose population would be declining due to low birthrates if not for immigration?

Prosperity reduces birth rates for a variety of reasons.

One of the big drivers of population growth is being a poor farmer and preserving a legacy. Once you have some wealth, the incentives change.

My grandparents grew up poor in rural Ireland, my grandmother was one of 12 children and at least 16 pregnancies, born in the WWI era. 9 of the siblings made it to adulthood. They needed people to milk cows and catch fish, and needed living sons to inherit the land and take care of the elders.

Immigration in modern western countries fills the gap between productivity gains and the dearth of workers. It keeps salaries lower to reduce inflation and preserves the status quo. Remember that behind of all of these crazy debates is a need for certain stakeholders to maintain power.

> It keeps salaries lower to reduce inflation and preserves the status quo.

That doesn’t seem correct. Waves of Hispanic and Asian immigration has reshaped California from Conservative to _the_ most liberal state. CA also has high minimum wages and much better worker protections than most other states, due to the liberal leaning politicians that got elected.

Enter the right wing "populists".

Why do you think that these folks are so upset about immigration from Latin America and Asia? The old way was to exploit cheap immigrant labor... but after many years, you now have a situation where that immigrant labor is disrupting the status quo.

This has happened before. The same type language directed at Mexican and central american laborers was directed at Irish, Italian, Greek, Chinese and Jewish immigrants in the 19th century. Race, religion, supposed immorality, the same shit. See the Page Act, Chinese Exclusion Act and "Know Nothing Party".

It doesn't need to square with it. In some places population can increase, in others it can decrease; add them all up and there is some number, ΔP, that is either positive or negative. For a long time now, it's been an exponentially-increasing positive, which I contend is bad news, and I hope it reverses. If people move around, all that does is move the growth around.

If anyone can tell me why they downvoted this straightforward, factually correct and (I would've thought) uncontroversial comment, I would love to hear it.

I'm not talking about your little patch of ground, I'm talking about the globe here.

A billionaire worrying about the possibility of global ecological collapse due to overpopulation and then deciding that their preferred reaction to this is to spend their vast wealth keeping people out of the particular corner of the planet that they personally spend most time in, is some of the laziest thinking I have encountered in quite a while.

edit - Also, I am not entirely sure that her partners in this battle she was fighting against immigration, have really got the memo on the whole ecology/overpopulation thing. They strike me as more the sort to either be siring their quiverfull ready for the coming eschaton, or to leave a trail of illegitimate children from a series of messy affairs with employees.

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