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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

OKLAHOMANS ASK "WHAT HAVE WE DONE?"

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Economists discuss a new study showing HB 1804, one of the nation's toughest anti-immigration laws could cost Oklahomans $3 billion per year. Ouch!
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Comments

  1. George Chell's Avatar
    Let them pay!
  2. hmm's Avatar
    This is what economy professors are supposed to do: study and discuss. Aside from teaching, this is what they are paid for. It is just that economics is not an exact science so it is wise to wait till more data come in before jumping to a conclusion. In fact, I suspect you had known the answer even before the study so why appeal to science at all?
  3. Lou's Avatar
    http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5heF80SqPHj0LbcvNXib8jm4eQFIAD8VN0MD80
  4. George Chell's Avatar
    "This is what economy professors are supposed to do: study and discuss. Aside from teaching, this is what they are paid for. It is just that economics is not an exact science so it is wise to wait till more data come in before jumping to a conclusion. In fact, I suspect you had known the answer even before the study so why appeal to science at all?"

    As I have said over and over again economists have abdicated their responsibility..I am an economist studying immigration. Intellectually dishonest economists such as George Borjas at Harvard and Vernon Briggs at Cornell assume away globalization and claim that wages for Americans go up when foreign workers, skilled or otherwise are not let into the country. One international organization may take up the issue of Foreign Direct Investment and immigration later this year. Stay tuned.
  5. Geroge Chell's Avatar
    Lou:

    I am grateful to be living in Washington DC and I will not visit the nearby Prince William County or for that matter place such as Oklahoma or Arizona.
  6. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    "It is just that economics is not an exact science"

    And what science is "exact science"? Physicist have been discussing the bing bang and limits of the universe for good 30 years now. Three years of testing is required to approve a new drug. Just to name a few non-exact sciences. I do, however, agree that Borjas is intellectually dishonest.

    George, I have heard an opinion (which I strongly believe in) that immigration is the international investment of the future. As we know, capital and labor are the two main components of economic success, and if the capital was scarse in the past, labor is what is going to be scarse in the future as capital is already abundant now.
  7. George Chell's Avatar
    "George, I have heard an opinion (which I strongly believe in) that immigration is the international investment of the future. As we know, capital and labor are the two main components of economic success, and if the capital was scarse in the past, labor is what is going to be scarse in the future as capital is already abundant now."

    I think the future is here..some economist has to show it empirically with some complex stat model.

  8. hmm's Avatar
    LNLW: All I am saying is that there aren't yet sufficient data on how Oklahoma economy reacts to the new law. Most sciences cannot offer reliable predictions without data, and this is surely true about economics, in fact, predictions in economics are damn hard even with lots of data. Until there is enough data we are talking politics, not science. It is fine for economists to study/discuss the stuff, but one should be cautious in interpreting the results. Now the exact science begins when you can predict results of an experiment with a definite certainty, say a new drug helps 60% of patients, and causes serious complications in 2%. I do not find your example with big bang relevant though: none of big bang stuff is testable.

    What is happening in Oklahoma is an important experiment and I hope its results will discourage people from repeating it nationwide, but honestly we have to wait a bit longer to know all economic ramifications. I suspect that the sky won't start falling in Oklahoma, and my guess is that the loss for the economy won't be as bad as they say. In fact, I would hesitate to bet money on whether Oklahoma is going to suffer significant losses; I just do not know. I generally think it is a good test to see if you are absolutely sure of something: would you be willing to bet 1K on the issue? I would not.


  9. b's Avatar
    "none of big bang stuff is testable"
    I should stick to engineering but does CMB ring a bell? Prediction agrees to something like a part in a billion. They have some beautiful pictures too of data.
  10. hmm's Avatar
    b: you are right that I should stay away from discussing big bang.
  11. JoeF's Avatar
    "I have heard an opinion (which I strongly believe in) that immigration is the international investment of the future."

    Indeed. A recent study published by the Copenhagen Consensus 2008 Project, written by two trade economists from Australia and England, says that global gains from immigration would be greater than the gain from international trade ($675b vs. $300b), according to an article in a recent issue of the Economist.
  12. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    hmm, there will always be people who will distort data and findings and claim that OK have not lost a single dollar of businees or taxes. There are also people who claim evolution is not a proven theory.

    I would bet OK economy will have lost as a result of this rule, but I would not bet on the objectivity of the reasearcher who will look into into it. I am myself in a similar filed (determining the $ impact of business programs), and data spinning based on agendas is rampant.
  13. JoeF's Avatar
    "There are also people who claim evolution is not a proven theory."

    A bit OT, but these people usually point to the word "theory", of course not understanding that a scientific theory differs dramatically from what the common use of the word describes.
  14. Legal and no longer waiting's Avatar
    Joe, yes, that's exactly what I was trying to say. There is a mixup in terms (no, facts are not substitutes for theories - theories explain fact, so there is a meaningful relationship between those), and "not proven theory" is I guess what they are trying to argue when they say "it's a theory". They can't even use the words right.
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