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Tag Archives: open borders

Open Borders: Now Do You See What We’re Missing?

In Open Borders, I never claim that immigration restrictions make life in the First World bad.  I don’t try to scare people into supporting more immigration, a la, “Without more immigrants, we’re doomed.”  What I claim, rather, is that immigration is a massive missed opportunity.  While life is fine the way it is (or was, until a month ago), there is no reason to settle for “fine.”  If there is a dependable way to dramatically improve our lives, we should seize it....

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Open Borders: Think of the Children

I love to see kids reading Open Borders.  When my daughter was five, she read it over my shoulder as I wrote it – and I knew I was right to make it a graphic novel.  Since then, I’ve heard about dozens of kids enjoying the book.  When I advertise it and add #ThinkOfTheChildren, I’m not joking.  I really would like to put Open Borders in the hands of every kid on Earth. The uncharitable explanation is that I want to brainwash ignorant children with absurd dogmas.  I...

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Reflections on Guatemala

I first journeyed to Guatemala 20 years ago, hosted by Universidad Francisco Marroquín.  Two weeks ago, I returned for a delightful extended visit, accompanied by my Spanish-speaking elder sons and former EconLog blogger Jim Schneider.  I spent over a week doing guest lectures at UFM, then gave Friday’s keynote talk for the Reason Foundation’s Reason in Guatemala conference.  During our trip, we were also able to visit the awesome Mayan ruins of Tikal and Yaxha.  Here...

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Carow Hall Reviews Open Borders

You need a thick skin here at Carow Hall.  If you’re wrong, your colleagues aren’t afraid to tell you.  The upside: When you receive praise, you know it’s the real thing.  So what’s the buzz here for Open Borders: The Science and Ethics of Immigration? Tyler Cowen: That is the already-bestselling graphic novel by Bryan Caplan and Zach Weinersmith, and I would just like to say it is a phenomenal achievement.  It is a landmark in economic education, how to present...

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The Dream of Open Borders

Like Martin Luther King, I have a dream: that my four children will one day live in a world where human beings will not be judged by the nation of their birth, but by the content of their character. My dream, in short, is that my sons and daughter will live to see a world of open borders.  If the arc of the moral universe bends toward justice, our descendants will view the immigration restrictions we continue to casually accept with the same horror that we now reserve...

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Garett Jones on Open Borders: More Endogenous Than Thou

Garett Jones faults me for treating cross-country productivity differences as exogenous.  I disagree. On further reflection, though, I think he’s making an analogous error.  Ponder his statement: As you know, my key disagreement is a theoretical and empirical one: the policy of Open Borders flows fairly naturally from the view that a nation’s level of productivity—total factor productivity or TFP to be pedantic—is largely exogenous to the experiences, backgrounds, and...

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Garett Jones on Open Borders: A Belated Reply

Last November, Garett Jones wrote two responses to my Open Borders.  The first was “Measuring the Sacrifice of Open Borders,” a short paper on the distributional effects of free migration.  I replied here. Soon afterward, however, Garett also wrote me this open letter.  Since I didn’t want to hastily respond to serious criticism, I waited until I had time to carefully respond.  Now I’m ready.  Here’s my point-by-point response.  This format works especially well...

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Fabio Rojas’s Weak Argument for Subsidizing Illegal Aliens

Somehow I missed Indiana University sociology professor Fabio Rojas’s April article titled “Conservative Arguments in Support of Undocumented College Students,” published by the James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal. It appeared on April 19. I won’t comment on whether his arguments are conservative; I don’t care. The problem is that they’re not good arguments. He starts out strong, defending the idea that people should be able to move here, a view I largely...

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