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Another progressive stupidity … let migrants fill the open jobs

Another progressive stupidity … let migrants fill the open jobs

Progressive solutions rarely work because they tend to be simplistic – and not in line with how the real-world works. 

For example, they believe that Washington can print or borrow money to meet every need of the American people.  Or that you can actually tax corporations without having the consumer pay the taxes when they purchase stuff.  Or that you can control prices without causing shortages.  Or that you can give folks more money to blunt the impact of inflation without causing more inflation.  Or ….. well , you get the idea.

Recently, those on the left have come up with another fantasy idea.  Since we have so many open jobs – and we have so many migrants flowing into America – why not just give them the jobs.  Two problems solved.

Actually, it creates more problems.  Let us start with the basic problem.  In a healthy economy, there is a balance between you and I, as a consumer, AND producers.  There will always be consumers who are not producers – children, the disabled, the temporarily unemployed, etc.  To some extent, even the family dog.

Because of ill-guided generosity, we have been supporting the lives of too many folks who could work but are either stuck on generational dependency or prefer a modest standard of living rather than work for their own betterment.  They rely on dubious claims to welfare or workman’s compensation as an alternative to working and earning. They rely on the productive folks to support and subsidize them.  Some may drop out of the workforce because they have adjusted to living off a productive spouse or parent – possibly with some form of government assistance.

Did you ever wonder how all those people who have not come back to their jobs are getting by.  Well, that is how.

Giving their jobs to unemployed migrants (consumers) does nothing to solve the problem of too many consumers.  Certainly, the working migrants will be a plus to the economy — making a consumer a consumer/producer — but we still have all those consume-only folks who should also be producing.

For the economy to grow, we need both the migrants AND the stay-at-homes to be producing – those who are able, of course.  We are a rich enough – and compassionate enough – nation to cover those who are not able to produce.

Make no mistake about it.  Immigration is essential to economic growth.  But it must be based on LEGAL immigration that includes vetting.  We need to exclude the criminal class. They are an economic burden on society.  And we must limit immigration to a capacity to employ the new arrivals.  If we are only absorbing millions of consumers, the economy will not grow.  It will falter.

To stabilize the economy, we need to have jobs for immigrants and migrants AND have the domestic stay-at-homes return to the workforce – return to producing.  When a person comes to America as a consumer/producer, they create a new job.  Giving them jobs vacated by an able-bodied American does not.

In order to not have the economy overrun, we need to admit only ELIGIBLE asylum seekers – which is only about 15 percent of those crossing the border seeking asylum.  That means that millions of folks who have been allowed to enter and remain in the country are not eligible for asylum.  Many are deported, but many are not – creating a pool of people who are consuming … not producing … and should not be here.

The simplistic solution of giving some of the current asylum seekers the jobs that should have been filled by the stay-at-homes is more progressive snake oil.  It sounds good.  Comes with grand promises – but cures nothing.

So, there ‘tis.

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry Horist Larry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.


  1. Tom

    I basically agree with you. My only disagreement is with the reasons people stay home and do not return to their jobs. The reports have indicated that many people who had worked in those now vacated jobs actually used their stimulus money and time off to get educations and pursue careers instead of just a low wage server job. Others such as wives with working husbands making a good living decided to just stay home for a variety of reasons such as health / Covid avoidance, child raising and homeschooling because schools were closed, some switched careers after finishing educations so they could advance, or shifted to volunteer work, low pay and being disrespected, etc. We must be careful not to paint people with a broad brush. You may want to see the survey on this very topic!

    • larry Horist

      Tom … I think we are in basic agreement. The point of the commentary was not all the reasons we have lost able bodied works filling the unprecedented job openings, but to address the issue of merely filling them with migrants. You are correct in that those who have taking alternative productive work are not the problem as much as those who have become total consumers — which seems to be most of those who dropped out of the job search — and are not counted as unemployed.. Some put the actual unemployment rate at 14 percent if they were to re-enter the job seeking class. Personally, I think that is wrong. If they re-entered job seeking, many would find jobs very quickly. I would put the effective unemployment rate somewhere between the current 3.7 and maybe 8 or 9 percent.

  2. Tom

    My only concern with using these migrants as workers is that we need to be paying them the same wage that we would pay an other American so that we avoid creating yet another class of low wage workers (commonly called “working class poor”) that need to depend on government assistance to make ends meet. Many of the jobs vacated were restaurant server jobs, hospitality industry jobs, and care facility jobs, not to mention 30% of nurses quit due to overworked, long hours, and burn-out.

    • larry Horist

      Tom … I think market forces would put them at the same wage scales as American workers — although by increasing the supply, there could be a modest drop in demand that would slow down the current wage increase rate. Keep in mind that the current increase in wages is due largely to the shortage of workers. That is how the economy works.

      • Tom

        Larry it is precisely those “market forces” that concern me because if those forces suppress wages for migrants, there is little the migrant can do about it. You may not be aware of this but in the healthcare industry there has been a significant shortage of care workers (the ones who clean patients, change bedding, etc). There was a push years ago in this industry to import migrant workers from Eastern Europe. As an elder care consultant in the healthcare industry, I campaigned against this effort. My reasoning was that the premise that this importation was based on was that they could not find Americans willing to work wiping butts and changing soiled bedding for $8-9 per hour. So the thought was that Eastern European women could fill these jobs at the $8-9 rate. Then when their backs are ruined and they can no longer work, they would be sent back to Eastern Europe country of origin. They would not be citizens nor could they count on social security taxes even though they would have to pay them. In the end, they could not get help in their older age here in the USA and had not built up credits in their own country of origin’s public pension system. So they end up worse than had they never come here. This is an example of market forces running amuck! When you speak of market forces, there seems to be an underlying belief of benevolence that the market forces will do what is right and that it will be fair to the migrants. This has historically proven to be untrue in the healthcare industry, poultry industry, and other industries where low wage jobs are prevalent. If we had a livable wage law in all states that is equally applied to all labor, domestic or foreign born, I might agree with you on market forces. But this has proven not to the the case in several industries that often employ (or shall I say prey) on these foreign workers because the industry knows there is not much the foreign worker can do about it in our system thanks to expensive lawyer fees and court costs.

        • larry Horist

          Tom … If you add more workers to the pool, it is bound to have a very modest impact on wage growth. That same is true if all the stay-at-homes suddenly started seeking jobs. It would be a reality throughout the market — not a unique impact on the migrants. The wage that would be provided to migrants can also be set based on prevailing wage scales in the area. But the impact differs based on skill and the job. Since migrants might be considered unskilled workers, they would impact mostly on the wage levels of unskilled workers. Unless employers are engaging in indentured servitude type tactics, we will not see employers preying on workers. Minimum wage or living wage laws never work. They only provide a small benefit for a short time to those who get a pay increase. But they impact on unemployment … future wage increases … and create price increases. Good for the person who gets the increase. Not so good for the person who loses their job … does not get a job … and does not get an anticipated future pay increase. No matter how big or small an economy may be, there are those who do not need a livable wage — interns, parttime workers, second income couples, semi-volunteers — and they establish the bottom of the wage scale. It will always exist — and will never be a livable wage on its own. That is the vast vast majority of workers live above the legal minimum wage. $8 an hour is not a livable wage, but it is a nice income for high school kid to sweep out the local store after school. In pose $15 an hour and the kid has no job.

  3. frank stetson

    Hopefully Larry won’t go full narcissism on this by whining it’s all about him, it’s an obsession with him, and it’s a need to psychoanalyze him based on his writing. No, it’s about the ideas.

    First, the article has a lot of ideas but very few supporting facts — just opinions, concepts, and ideas. Nothing wrong with that, but there’s nothing to support them which I find to be mere diatribe. Only one number, one statistic, not one piece of scientific evidence, no sources, no experts, just ideas without support, therefore, IMO, without merit.

    It’s midterm fear and loathing fear mongering time: this time it’s the migrant hoard descending on you after being set loose by the evil, elitest, liberals. The author notes a humongous migrant criminal class, massive numbers of illegal asylum seekers, all of which may be coming to get you.

    His 15% number of how many asylum seekers are found to even be eligible, while unsourced, probably comes from Senator Portman and is thoroughly debunked:

    The first source I found, considered expert in the field, stated: “Under the new Biden administration asylum seekers are seeing greater success rates in securing asylum. While asylum denial rates had grown ever higher during the Trump years to a peak of 71 percent in FY 2020, they fell to 63 percent in FY 2021. Expressed another way, success rates grew from 29 percent to 37 percent under President Biden.

    Before he gets to his “facts,” the author plants some unsupported tripe castigating liberals for evil deeds like: “Progressive solutions rarely work because they tend to be simplistic – and not in line with how the real-world works.” MAGA, I will have Mexico pay for the wall, repeal and replace the big lie: ObamaCare, etc. come from his party, owners of simple. I mean, like progressives own the banner bandwagon…..

    Or his conclusion: “For example, they believe that Washington can print or borrow money to meet every need of the American people” when the author knows that Trump owns the largest stimulus, deficits, and debt in American history. No one has borrowed more than Republicans.

    “Or that you can actually tax corporations without having the consumer pay the taxes when they purchase stuff” which is not true nor does he prove it, but he can attempt to scare you with it.

    “Or that you can control prices without causing shortages” when the author knows the last price controls were under Nixon, a Republican.

    “Or that you can give folks more money to blunt the impact of inflation without causing more inflation,” which is a repeat of the Trump money giveaways, deficits, and debts. As the author concludes: “Or ….. well , you get the idea.” You betcha, Spanky.

    OK, heck with the ideas, let’s focus on the people the author feels that you should fear, loath, and be afraid of. They are vetted asylum seekers who, by law, can pursue jobs in the US. Period. Whether Trump or Biden, that’s the law. Abbot and DeSantis agree and have expedited the process by providing free transport, food, and lodging to major US job centers. I am not sure what the author is talking about, not the truth, that’s for sure, as noted above. Just fear and loathing, again, without support, just Republican legends.

  4. Mike

    Larry, So much in this article shows that you don’t really understand much about today’s world (at least in the US). You complain that Democrats think that we can just print more money anytime we need it-I hate to pop your bubble, but the Republicans have been the deficit spending champs for the last 40 years-you are living in the past (far distant past). When we run deficits, yes, we need to print more money to cover expenses. Republicans cannot claim to be fiscally responsible any longer. As for the people that are not working (and therefore not producing). Have you studied the birth rates in the US? In the post WWII era we had a period commonly known as “the baby boom”. Those people are now reaching retirement age, and many of them who can (myself included) have decided they prefer not to work anymore. This is the main cause of your producer vs consumer imbalence, not people of typical working age (30’s and 40’s) choosing not to work. As for the immigrants themselves, these are not illegal immigrants like the right likes to say, these are people who are fleeing problems in their home country and are seeking asylum here. Yes, we have a backlog on immigration hearings, so perhaps conservatives in congress would like to bring forward a bill granting more funding for immigration judges? Haven’t heard them doing that-have you? They prefer to whine about the crisis at the border, feeling (correctly) that it will turn out their base. Have you really offered any suggestion as to how to correct your alleged problem in this tome? The answer is a resounding no, with the exception that you somehow want people who have decided to retire to go back to work. The basis of this article (which you claim is stupid) sounds like a great idea that the progressives have made, let’s fix two problems we have currently in the US, not enough workers and people who are here and need work. That is the basic difference between Democrats and Republicans, Democrats come up with solutions, Republicans point fingers without offering any constructive fixes. So there tis….

    • larry Horist

      Mike… your comment show that you really do not understand my commentaries — or how the market works, even in this modern world. The idea your praise is a simplistic (stupid) solution for simple minded people.

      • larry Horist

        Mike .. and as far as the migrants are concerned, the vast majority are ineligible for Asylum — ergo illegal if the do not return home.

        • Mike

          Larry, Do you have any facts to back up that comment regarding the asylum seekers? Many are awaiting asylum hearings, but are they really ineligible? Sounds like just another Horowitz opinion… Bottom line-we need workers because the dumbass before Biden restricted immigration so severely (when it was obvious that we needed workers-evidenced by a very low unemployment rate which was regularly touted while his regime was in power) that we are failing to fill jobs (yes, our birthrate is low and has been for some time). You obviously do not understand the basic principle of supply and demand-we have a lot more demand that we have the capability to supply. So why not use the people that are here awaiting their asylum hearings to (at least temporarily) fix that supply issue? Instead you prefer to complain about citizens that have decided to retire. Time for you to go commiserate with your neighbors at the rest home in Boca….

          • larry Horist

            Mike … I see you are again displaying your anti-Semitism again by cloaking your criticism of my opinions and me by inventing an obvious Jewish name for the fictional Larry Horist of your psyche. Your association with negativism and Judaism is disgusting. Then there is your repeated insults base on my age …. another hateful ism in your mental file drawer?

            As far as your question, read my response to Frank Stetson. He thought he was rebutting my opinion with stats, but he did not know how to understand them so he actually proved my point inadvertently … lol.

    • Jimbo

      One of my concerns is that I feel that it’s important for immigrants, legal or not, to be able to communicate. They should be required to take “English as a second language.” I also believe that they shouldn’t be paid any less than those they are replacing. Young people growing up use many jobs as stepping stones to better employment and I think that there should be some equality generated in how these jobs are distributed.

  5. Frank stetson

    I concur Mike and penned a nice piece. Unfortunately it has links so maybe aee it some day in a thread far far far feom here ;-).

    • larry Horist

      Frank Stetson … were you drinking when you show this one off?

      • Joseph S. Bruder

        Why do you insist on insulting your writers? He had two typing mistakes in his last post. You have one grammatical error, and have one word that doesn’t make sense. Were you drinking? Or just being an ass?

        • Joe Gilbertson

          Because you are ugly and your mother dresses you funny

          • ben is back

            3rd person ad hominem attack by joe; it’s a joe no-no in joe land, says joe. it’s good to be king.

      • frank Stetson

        Were you doing heroin again when you snapped this grinning ghoul of a picture?

        • larry Horist

          Frank Stetson …. what in God’s name are you saying? Who you responding to?

          • frank Stetson

            If you use the indent-system Joe has set up, it’s pretty obvious who I am responding to. Sometimes heroin affects your cognitive capabilities. At least that’s what the experts say; how about you?

  6. Joseph S. Bruder

    Larry’s first paragraph is a litany of tired arguments that the “conservatives” continue to make in an attempt to remove all government control of the economy. For an economist, he doesn’t seem to understand that the government controls the money supply. The amount of gold in Fort Knox (if there’s even any left at all) doesn’t determine the money supply anymore. The government taxes the profits of corporations, which isn’t necessarily passed on to the consumer, in some cases they just make less money for investors. Inflation doesn’t affect everyone equally, and some people are going to need help, but conservatives would rather they starve.

    Your next concept is not much better. You state that there is a balance between consumers and producers (maybe you’re thinking of supply and demand?)… and somehow that proves that immigrants don’t contribute to society. First of all, I assume that, at your age, you get a social security check. That “balance” you’re worried about is more than just producers and consumers. There’s a balance of younger and older workers too. Most immigrants coming over the border are young with families – they will take menial jobs at first (which most American workers have no appetite for), and they might take services for a year or two until they get on their feet, but they’ll contribute to society and pay taxes and raise children that will do the same – for many years, and they will be paying for your social security until you kick the bucket.

    People who have dropped out of the workforce have had various reasons – but in general, they had enough savings or a life situation that allowed them to do so. Many decided they were in dead-end jobs, and went back to school. Being productive to society doesn’t mean you can’t take a sabbatical once in a while to clear your head (and maybe save your own life). Most of those people will come back to work with a fresh perspective and renewed interest in their (new) jobs. Even people who retire get bored and do some sort of work, often more meaningful than their life careers were.

    It wasn’t too long ago that Republicans were the ones who wanted unlimited immigration, because ranchers and farmers and other businesses wanted unlimited cheap labor. What has changed? Republicans have decided that fear-mongering to divide people is better for the Republican Party, regardless of what is good for the country.

    There is no difference between a “legal” and “illegal” immigrant – they’re still people, looking for better lives, just like the European ancestors that most of our generation is descended from, and the Asians, Africans, or South Americans that most of the other half of the country is descended from. They will work their asses off, just like our grandparents and parents, and contribute to American society, whether Republican “conservatives” like it or not.

    • larry Horist

      Joseph S Bruder … When you write “There is no difference between a “legal” and “illegal” immigrant …” you show a complete ignorance — maybe even contempt– for the law. That is the sentiment of the open borders people. Even most on the left believe — or say they believe in LEGAL immigration. You do not? Most of the ancestors to whom you refer came to America legally. At this time, there are millions of folks living in America illegally because they have not received or been granted asylum or have overstated their visas. And surprise to you, conservatives have been supporters of immigration throughout my lifetime as a conservatives — and before. You dwell on a very small percentage of the population who harbor anti-immigration feelings. Some on the right, but mostly on the left. You seem to forget the violent anti immigration actions of the unions — all that taking American jobs crap. Anecdotally, I can well recall the harsh anti-immigrations rhetoric — against Asians and Jews (on top of the anti-black racism) — of my Democrat precinct and other Democrat officials. If you study your history, you would know that the greatest anti-immigration sentiment and policies based on race cam from Democrats — especially the 20th Century progressive movement. The only explanation for today’s open borders policies among Democrats is the belief that impoverished minorities will been fit them electorally. As I have written in the past, I think they are very wrong and will discover that even the current wave of border crossers will not be politically monolithic. We ae already seeing that in the shift to the GOP among Hispanics.

      By the way, I get a kick out of how you ant Frank talk about me negatively in the third person as if you have an audience ….lol. And you wonder why I think you guys are a little to obsessed about the author to the detriment of the issues. You seem more interested in trying to make that Larry Horist wrong instead of making a cogent argument. Just notice how you mischaracterized my opinions in your first sentence — instead propping up the straw man Larry Horist of your mental invention.

      • frank stetson

        What a narcissist, always thinking it’s all about you. It helps if you can’t argue the point, attack the person. A Trumplicant specialty that the author applies liberally. About the only thing he is liberal about: name calling, personal attacks, and attempted shaming.

        I nailed him on this 15% statistic, the foundation of his argument, and he kvetches about my obsession with him personally, oye.

        • larry Horist

          Frank Stetson ….LOL… another post all about Larry Horist in the third person — as if you have an audience to inform. If you want to deal with issues, why all the third person stuff? I hope you realize, virtually no one is reading your long mendacious screeds and false claims of truth.

          • frank stetson

            What a narcissist, always thinking it’s all about you. I am sorry you’re readership is so low.

            I nailed him on this 15% statistic, the foundation of his argument, and he kvetches about my obsession with him personally.

          • larry Horist

            Frank Stetson … again that reading comprehension problem. The readership on the site and my commentaries is rather high. I was specifically referring to YOUR long, ponderous and irrelevant screeds — mostly carrying your opinion of me — that have virtually no audience. That third person writing. And see how your just repeat and repeat a contention when you have been proven wrong … BUSTED … CRUSHED …. AND SHATTERED. Shame on me for again responding to your meaningly and irrelevant comments. –but then I may be the last person that actually peruses what you write. Maybe you get some attention from Joseph S Bruder. But at least he has sibling rivalry to explain his obsession.

  7. Rat Wrangler

    A lot of the jobs these immigrants, both legal and illegal, will probably take would be service jobs, usually paying near minimum wages. What that means is that places like fast food restaurants will be filled with people who don’t, or barely, speak English. If America follows the examples of most of the non-English speaking nations, and actually adopts an official national language, we could demand that everyone wanting to be a citizen, or even to work here, must speak passable English. Not only might that delay some asylum and citizenship seekers, so they can learn our language before they come here, it would also mean that we would have servers we can understand. It’s bad enough I have to ask help desks to repeat themselves, or transfer me to someone with a better command of English, I don’t like doing the same with wait staff or other public facing jobs.

  8. frank stetson


    Buy another product or eat in another establishment. They probably don’t want to serve you anyway.

    Only three out of four of our parents were fluent, so it’s pretty normal for us. Makes like more fun sometimes to see a different perspective more noticeably due to language. Plus I know how to say “shut your face” in Slovak and to tell undecipherable jokes from Italy.

    I agree it’s hard when at a service desk, not the place for a more difficult understanding of things. But the other places, for the most part, get over it —- it’s part of life in the global village unless you are looking to live behind that wall.

    Larry says: “The readership on the site and my commentaries is rather high” but what they do on their own time is OK by Larry, right? I would guess you need to be high to read this shit.

    Then you claim that my commentaries: “have virtually no audience.” I’m sorry but are you so obsessed with me that you are tracking my readers? How do you do that and protect their privacy? You are watching their every move on the site? Man, that’s so creepy on so many levels.

    And you call me obsessed? You’re watching, listening, following all your readers to find out their habits, what they read and such. Oh no, say it ain’t so Joe — that’s Orwellian, brother.

    I understand how you need to stray from topic so instead you spend your time generalizing, and not in a good way, me. You claim that I “just repeat and repeat a contention when you have been proven wrong … BUSTED … CRUSHED …. AND SHATTERED” when you miscomprehended the experts and even admitted your statistic is “nuanced.” IOW, you were wrong, you know it, but can’t outright lie when busted so you go with “nuanced.”

    So you go back to the personal attacks, tell us how you are plagued by the obsessed, the fake pysch jobs, name calling attackers. Anything to avoid an actual response, with supporting facts and sources.

    IF you actually ever want to get back on topic, let us know. And yes, it’s a repeat for the same 15% factor you have wrong, it’s the poisonous fruit your entire estimate is based on, you have admitted it’s a “nuanced” statistic, and, of course, you are still right……and I am (fill in the ad hominem of Larry’s choice.)

    And then you dismiss me and say nevermore. Oye. Sigh.

    And still waiting for your support for those other silly numbers you used that I called out. So far, crickets. As is your way. Feckless facts, unsupported statistics, same old tropes.