By Peter Huessy ~
$24 billion is sent back to Mexico every year by Mexicans living and working illegally in America. That is the new estimate of immigration experts illustrating how important the flow of cash from America to Mexico is to Mexico’s economy. What are the implications if it is true for America?
Well, let’s do some math with this new estimate. If you as an illegal alien earn $20,000 ($9.60 an hour) and pay $2500 in total Federal taxes, that is money not available for sending to Mexico (the number is calculated using a notional $1500 employee only payroll tax plus $1000 in Fed and state income and sales taxes).
That leaves $17500 annually for an illegal to live on. But if you spend only $1400 a month to support yourself and family then you can only send $250 a year home to Mexico. And $24 billion divided by $250 a year implies 96 million illegals live in America. Oops. That cannot be true.
Ok the illegals send home $500 a year; but that implies 48 million illegals doing so. Oops! That also cannot be true.
Ok what about $80 a month and say $960 a year? But that implies there are 25 million illegals here. And just from Mexico!! That doesn’t make sense.
What if 8 million illegal aliens are from Mexico out of a total of 11 million illegals, and they send back $24 billion a year. Well that is $3000 a year per person sent back to Mexico which means these folks are living on $15,000 a year here in the United States. And if its 6 million that are from Mexico, and each illegal is sending home $4000 a year, they are thus living on only $14,000 a year.
Given that Mexican households average $10,000 a year in income, (households are 3.8 people) that cash must help. The remittances obviously are important.
But, on the other hand, the Mexicans as the [Great One] Mark Levin suggests, might try a little free enterprise rather than trying to look more and more like Venezuela. Then instead of, as Linda Chavez says, with three-quarters of illegals in America supposedly owning their own homes, they could own their own homes in Mexico. [I remain skeptical of Ms. Chavez’s new numbers from Commentary this month— $14,000 a year qualifies you for a mortgage in America under Dodd-Frank?]
Adding everything up, advocates of open borders are saying essentially we need illegal alien maids, dishwashers and folks to mow our lawns so we can have millions of aliens living in America in poverty. And working in job categories which are already filled 96-99% by Americans legally entitled to work. And if these alien folks are largely working off the books and the revenue that would otherwise go to the US and State Treasuries simply gets sent to Mexico, we lose out again.
I am not sure, but how is the current situation a bargain for the American people?
$24 billion a year sent overseas over 10 years is $240 billion not taxed or about $48 billion in lost revenue.
Looked at another way, if we have 2 million children otherwise not in America but here now because of illegal immigration, and each costs $10,000 a year, for 10 years, that’s $200 billion just for school. That’s a quarter of trillion when combined with the lost revenue. And if illegal alien income is earned entirely off the books, that is an additional $200 in lost revenue over a decade. Combined with school costs that is $400 billion. Even socialists must agree that is real money.
The consequences may be even worse.
Nick Eberstadt tells us in the Wall Street Journal of September 2 that there are 7 million adult men ages 24-54 in America [working age population] with no jobs, no prospects of jobs and not looking for jobs. They are collecting disability or welfare or some combination of both. And Nick thinks the real number may be closer to 10 million. (By the way hats off Nick; we’ll buy your new book with this narrative for sure!).
And is that number fairly near the number of illegal aliens working in America?
Maybe we ought to find out because it looks suspiciously close. Now true most of these jobs held by illegal aliens are probably hard, tough, boring and probably don’t pay much. Well, welcome to the real world, pops! Most of my generation worked at exactly these kind of jobs to pay for school or start our employment. Tens of millions of Americans work exactly these kind of jobs. No snowflakes these folks. Maybe America ought to grow up.
In short, maybe this Labor Day 2016 we should think twice about bringing in more illegal aliens many of who work off the books, live in poverty, and whose children get a free education. And in a society which at the same time supports with welfare and other government payments indolent and dropped out American men who join gangs, watch television and video games, don’t finish high school, and have children out of wedlock-we are obviously going simultaneously in the wrong direction on both immigration and welfare policy. Wonder why 65-70% of Americans think the country is going in the wrong direction?
We once had a work requirement for welfare. A former Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich, proposed it in 1995 and got it through the Congress and got the reforms signed into law in 1996.
But before becoming Speaker, Time and Newsweek magazines in December 1994, portrayed on their covers the new Speaker of the House as the new Scrooge and the new Grinch that stole Christmas. Newt was going to steal Tiny Tim’s crutch was the explicit message.
But guess what? Eight million people successfully moved from welfare to work. As one young lady told Fox News in an interview when asked why she dropped welfare and got a job, “I had to”. When asked why she had taken welfare in the first place, she replied: “Because I could”.