Numbers Count: David Brooks On Immigration
David Brooks` latest NYT column, Two Steps Toward a Sensible Immigration Policy, confirms his reputation as a good sociological journalist of the Tom Wolfe Lite school and a terrible policy pundit. He starts off pretty well by describing one aspect of the immigration problem:
What do you say to the working-class guy from the south side of San Antonio? He feels [sic — he knows — it`s called the Law of Supply and Demand] his wages are stagnating because he has to compete against illegal immigrants. He watches thousands [sic — millions] of people streaming across the border, bankrupting his schools and health care system, while he plays by the rules.
He`s no racist. Many of his favorite neighbors are kind, neat and hard-working Latinos. But his neighborhood now has homes with five cars rotting in the front yard and 12 single men living in one house. Now there are loud parties until 2 a.m. and gang graffiti on the walls. He read in the local paper last week that Anglos are now a minority in Texas and wonders if anybody is in charge of this social experiment.
What do you tell him about the immigration system?
Uh, that we have to get serious about cracking down on immigration? That he and his children`s futures are being sold down the river by the President of the United States?
No. Of course not. [More]