Obama Solves the Illegal Immigration Problem
It pains me to acknowledge any successes of the Obama Regime. Luckily for me -- though not for the country -- the Regime hasn't had many successes, so I have been spared having to endure much pain. But I must credit the Regime with one: it appears to have solved the illegal immigration problem, at least here in California.
Amazingly, since his glorious ascension in 2008, nearly a third of a million illegal immigrants have decamped California for elsewhere, mainly Mexico. This leaves about 2.6 million or so in the state, which is roughly about 7% of the population. But it's a major out-migration nonetheless.
These folks are leaving not because of any major state crackdown on undocumented workers. Remember, this is California, not Arizona! No, it is because economic conditions under Obama's job-shredding Regime (amplified by Jerry Brown's farcical policies) have made the economy here worse than many places south of the Border -- such as down Mexico Way.
California's unemployment rate has once again hit 12%, or about a third higher than the rest of the country as a whole. Once again, California has a rate of unemployment second only to Nevada, not to compare it with Texas (something that drives Californians into apoplectic rage). But Mexico now has an unemployment rate of less than half of California's, at about 4.9%.
Moreover, it appears that it is now easier for people to get credit to buy homes and to get a college education in Mexico. As the Mexican consul general in Sacramento put it, "[w]e have become a middle class country." He could just as well have added, "Even as you in America are becoming a third-world one, with your current Regime acting like the Castro and Chavez regimes. ¡Buena suerte, amigos, y vaya con Dios!"
In fact, in the recent U.N. statistical ratings of countries, Mexico's standard of living (as measured by the average lifespan of its citizens, along with their average educational attainment and per capita income) now exceeds those of China, India, and Russia. And Mexico's growth rate (4-5% annually) puts ours to shame.
Besides doing its level best to push our economy down to the level of developing nations by instituting the same corrupt crony statist economic systems cursing them, the Obama Regime has also pushed down our credit rating. As a recent Wall Street Journal article reports, a consequence of this is that markets are now viewing default by the U.S. as now no longer inconceivable. The cost of one year of credit default swap insurance on Brazilian treasury notes is now less than on our own treasuries. Last week, it cost about $115,000 to insure $14.4 million in American treasuries, compared to only $45,000 to insure Brazilian ones.
Obama has made bond traders feel that "not even the U.S. government can be seen as completely risk-free."
In fact, under Obama, we now have higher unemployment than Mexico does, worse credit and certainly less energy expansion than Brazil does, and a less free economy than Chile has. About the only Latin American country we are still leading is Cuba, but since Obama may well outlast Fidel, I regard it as just a matter of time before people start leaving Miami for Havana.
In sum, the Obama Regime, by so devastating the American economy in so short a time, is solving the immigration problem in a hitherto unforeseen way, but one breathtaking in its simplicity. Once it makes the economy so unattractive that no sane people will want to move here, why, none will.
And you thought Obama was incompetent....
Gary Jason is a contributing editor to Liberty Unbound and author of the forthcoming book Dangerous Thoughts.