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May 20, 2011
 
 

Overpopulation Devaluing Unskilled Labor


By Ira Mehlman, FAIR Media Director

People who are concerned about overpopulation generally think of the problem in terms of impact on the environment and depletion of resources. Another concern, perhaps just as significant, is that overpopulation is leading to a worldwide surplus in low and unskilled labor.

Ironically, President Obama noted in his May 19th speech about the Middle East that millions upon millions of people without any marketable skills in the Arab world pose a threat to regional and global stability. Yet in a speech delivered nine days earlier in El Paso, Texas, on immigration policy, President Obama laid out a plan that would legalize millions of low and unskilled illegal aliens and create for millions more such workers to immigrate legally to the United States.

Illustrative of just how low overpopulation and technology have driven the value of low and unskilled labor is a story that ran earlier this week on NPR. Desperate Pakistani workers are fleeing desperately overpopulated Pakistan in search of jobs elsewhere. In this story they're not headed to the United States, or Canada, or Europe; they're moving, in large numbers, to Afghanistan! (Not surprisingly, the story notes that Afghan workers are none too happy about the competition they face from the Pakistani illegal aliens.)

Every human being possesses inherent value and is entitled to respect and dignity. But the reality of the world in which we live is that low and unskilled labor, as a commodity, is rapidly losing whatever value it might still have. And, as the president correctly points out, millions of people with little or nothing to contribute economically pose a threat to social stability. Unfortunately, the president has a hard time reconciling this reality to his immigration policy.

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