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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

HOW IMMIGRANTS CAN FIX THE HOUSING BUBBLE

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Various readers of this blog have been making this suggestion, but when folks say the same thing in the Wall Street Journal, that gets more attention. CNBC correspondent Erin Burnett also pointed out this piece this morning on Morning Joe on MSNBC.

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  1. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    The article jumps all over the place. The idea of giving green cards to people who buy houses is simply silly. It should be the other way around - let's give green cards to people who deseve them, and sure enough, they will buy houses. The statements of American immigration system being "relative open" is simply incorrect. It is by far more restrictive then majority of immigration systems around the world.

    I appreciate the intent of the author and sharing of some good statistics, but the whole idea of fixing the housing market through immigration is much like tail wagging the dog. There are other, more important reasons to fix the system. Housing markeitng is just a cherry on top.
  2. gg's Avatar
    Good Idea, Alan Greenspan also made it several months ago.

    But the implementation is key. If implmented as susggested in this WSJ article, then folks who are waiting for GC's likely to be short changed for those who have money.
  3. AD's Avatar
    Well, ok so let's not use immigration to reduce the surplus of houses for sale. But something has to be done about the excess inventory. Perhaps that article's mention of bulldozing the houses deserves attention. That should reduce inventory while generating a temporary spike in employment.
  4. Another voice's Avatar
    This idea is not going to please everyone and like anything it has pros and cons, never the less its worth while exploring it as part of the big picture...I am also sure that there are immigrants currently living in the US that can afford a house but they are not going to tie themselves up to a big purchase due to the uncertainty of their stay in the country. There are plenty of potential buyers in and out of the US. Health care costs are high in the US many retired potential immigrants would definitely have to consider that before thinking of moving to US, specially countries that have universal Health care.
  5. George Chell's Avatar
    For most ordinary folks to buy a house, they need a job. Ironically the areas with high number of surplus as well as foreclosed homes also have high unemployment. Los Angeles and New York come to mind! Hence the only way this idea can be implemented is to double the number of investor visas to get millionaires abroad to buy our homes in large numbers. I read a report that already millionaires in the UK are buying up homes in Detroit..not clear whether they are eligible for a GC and even if they get GC antis are not going to shout much, as they are British. However, a significant proportion of the money is with the Chinese and the Overseas Chinese. These are folks who dont need jobs..multimillionaires. These are the people who need to be targeted. Now, the antis wont like it because they are for a lack of better term, not white. CIS and FAIR are going to be up in arms if GCs are given to multimillionaire Chinese, whether from Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong or China. The next problem is getting them to buy homes in places such as Arizona. Will you buy a home if you were not white, knowing very well that Sheriff Arapaio will harass you because of the color of your skin? I wont even if I was a billionaire. Arapaio has given Arizona a racist reputation, and I am pretty sure that there are less well known law enforcement officials in Georgia, Texas and Oklahoma among others who probably will do the same as Sheriff Arapaio. Arizona's population is declining and some say they may loose a congressional seat during the next census for the first time in nearly seven decades. Economists also say that Arizona wont recover until 2013 at best. One thing is certain. Unless we can get folks who can afford to buy these houses, the housing crisis will be with us for a long time to come, perhaps with less intensity compared to today.
  6. George Chell's Avatar
    On a different topic, perhaps these guys need to apply for H1Bs...

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20090316/ts_alt_afp/useconomyjobscompany
  7. Jim's Avatar
    "For most ordinary folks to buy a house, they need a job. Ironically the areas with high number of surplus as well as foreclosed homes also have high unemployment. Los Angeles and New York come to mind! Hence the only way this idea can be implemented is to double the number of investor visas to get millionaires abroad to buy our homes in large numbers. I read a report that already millionaires in the UK are buying up homes in Detroit..not clear whether they are eligible for a GC and even if they get GC antis are not going to shout much, as they are British......

    This so sad but very true : (

    Not only that but this current recession seems to be bringing up pent-up anti-immigrant tendencies (mostly to non-Caucasians as you've mentioned)of the average American. They seem to be blaming everything to all the foreigners (except, of course Caucasians).

    I see this happening on an almost daily basis on many blogs sites and forums w/c originally has an International audience or have topics regarding immigration. Of course, non-whites gets discriminated more and almost nothing is said to whites that are trying to immigrate as well.
  8. Jim's Avatar
    "On a different topic, perhaps these guys need to apply for H1Bs..."

    I don't think call center agents can qualify for an H1B at it's current form (Greg can correct me on this) and even if they do, with the broken immigration system they will probably get backlogged as well. What's the use.

    Call centers are instead going abroad and are going to where they get their workers. In the Philippines, majority have to work graveyard shifts because of the time difference in the U.S. but they don't mind because they get paid above average salaries.

    This is also the reason why Filipino nurses have been going and are generally successful being nurses in the U.S. for decades. And the US has been having on and off nursing shortages ever since world war II. They are willing to take the graveyard/night shifts and willing to re-locate where they are needed.

    Healthcare, of course unlike IT and Call centers can't be outsourced and only rich Americans can go abroad for healthcare reasons.
  9. Hongbin Wang's Avatar
    Greg,

    This article fails to address the EB applicants, already in US, who will be buy a home in heart beat, if they were given permanent status here. Several hundred thousand ppl are waiting in retrogressed queues right here. Before they bring in more ppl, they should first remove the QUOTA on pending EB applicants!

    thanks
  10. Nurse's Avatar
    whats next shares of Citibank? rather than this focus on solving problems to achieve sound immigration policy.
  11. George Chell's Avatar
    "see this happening on an almost daily basis on many blogs sites and forums w/c originally has an International audience or have topics regarding immigration. Of course, non-whites gets discriminated more and almost nothing is said to whites that are trying to immigrate as well."

    People ask me if we are heading for a depression. I say two things need to be in place to create a depression: Follow Kirkorian's recommendations in his book "The Case Against Immigration: Both Legal and Illegal" and send every person on temporary work visa home and then put a moratorium on all immigration including wives and children of US citizens and mail order brides. They did something similar to the latter in 1924 and we all know what happened in 1929. Pass anti-trade legislation barring investment by "enemy" countries such as China. The will dump US securities and drive the dollar value down rather rapidly. We will then have seeds of great depression II.
  12. George Chell's Avatar
    "Healthcare, of course unlike IT and Call centers can't be outsourced and only rich Americans can go abroad for healthcare reasons."

    Not so rich are going to Canada and Mexico. I am not very rich. Try to find a very cheap ticket and go to an advanced country in Asia for medical check up every year.

  13. George Chell's Avatar
    "This article fails to address the EB applicants, already in US, who will be buy a home in heart beat, if they were given permanent status here. Several hundred thousand ppl are waiting in retrogressed queues right here. Before they bring in more ppl, they should first remove the QUOTA on pending EB applicants!"

    True. But they need to have jobs in areas with housing surplus!

  14. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    "This article fails to address the EB applicants, already in US, who will be buy a home in heart beat, if they were given permanent status here."

    Did you even read the article? I would suggest that you do before commenting. It actually points out the exact issue you are talking about.

    "The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation estimates that as of Sept. 30, 2006, 500,040 residents of the U.S. and 59,915 individuals living abroad were waiting for employment-based visas. Many would buy homes if their immigration conditions were settled."
  15. George Chell's Avatar
    According to this article, all non-whites are equal, some are more equal than others and hence the author says that we should give more preference to those who are more equal..

    http://www.forbes.com/2009/02/24/bobby-jindal-indian-americans-opinions-contributors_immigrants_minority.html
  16. Sid's Avatar
    Unrelated to the post -

    CS is cool again!!

    http://www.networkworld.com/cgi-bin/mailto/x.cgi?pagetosend=/export/home/httpd/htdocs/news/2009/031409-computer-science-majors.html
  17. Dan's Avatar
    I already bought a house even without a GC yet....
  18. George Chell's Avatar
    "CS is cool again!!"

    Yes. Is it increase in American students or total number of students including foreigners?

  19. Jim's Avatar
    "Not so rich are going to Canada and Mexico. I am not very rich. Try to find a very cheap ticket and go to an advanced country in Asia for medical check up every year."

    It is very unfortunate that Americans need to go elsewhere for healthcare. : (

    Everything, of course is due to the high cost of healthcare in the US and one major reason for it is the shortages of healthcare professionals. Some of w/c are artificially being driven up.

    This was a very good interview done and gives a bird's eye view about the problem and the reasons for the problems.

    http://www.healthleadersmedia.com/content/229810/topic/WS_HLM2_HR/Wait-for-ForeignBorn-Nurses-is-Getting-Longer.html

  20. George Chell's Avatar
    "It is very unfortunate that Americans need to go elsewhere for healthcare."

    Doctors in my neighborhood are demanding over one thousand dollars for medical check up (blood test, EKG, cancer test, etc)in my area whereas in this developed Asian country I can get it for $400 with Canadian, Ausssie, American and yes local doctors. This clinic is for expats and locals who can afford it. The insurance wont pay for medical check up in DC every year whereas if I do it abroad, they have no problem paying.
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