The Truth About Immigration Reform and the Economy

Inequality for All

I’ve been super busy handling family the past two weeks. Last week, I went to see my mom, and this week, my husband has some family in town, so we’re spending time with them. It’s crazy that the end of the year is already here. Once October gets here, December will be around the corner.

I found some awesome material from Robert Reich. Reich is a Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley. He was Secretary of Labor during the Clinton administration. He has written 13 books on the economy and other topics. He has a new film, “Inequality for All,” out September 27. It’s on my must watch list.

The Truth About the Economy

The Truth About Immigration Reform and the Economy

¬†What do you think? Let’s start a discussion below.

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  • I’m a huge fan of Reich but, admittedly, the implications from his thinking in the first video scare me more now than they did five years ago, when I wasn’t investing or planning for early retirement. Low taxation on capital gains (0% if you are in the 10% or 15% marginal income tax bracket, 15% if you are in the 25% marginal bracket or up) is a necessary component in my (and many other) early retiree’s plans. A change to the tax code aimed at further taxing the investment dollars of the very wealthy is likely to have serious impacts on the middle class who are living frugally and investing heavily.

    My primary fear is a serious change to the tax code as it relates to investment dollars after I’ve left the workforce. As many are learning in this recession, jumping back into the workforce after a long haitus is not always easy.

    • I think he wants to tax the really wealthy more. If the middle class keeps eroding, there will be no middle class to tax.
      One thing is definite in life death and taxes!

      • The rub is that many early retirees do seem quite wealthy because, well, they acquire wealth at much faster rate when compared to other Americans. I am fine taxing income but my worry is that we have a greater tax specifically on wealth (e.g. – a much higher capital gains/dividends tax rate). That could wreak havoc on the early retirement plans of the frugal even if the intent is to tax the traditional wealthy.

  • I agree 100% on his immigration views. All evidence points to the positive contribution of immigrants to the US economy. Amazingly, 50% of small and medium businesses in the US have been started by immigrants (including Google). I think that the media and lack of education on modern immigration allows fear to cultivate. Politicians are fueling this anti-foreigner sentiment. It’s really sad and is unfortunately happening in many countries, especially in European and Middle Eastern countries. I think economic downturn really exacerbates this fear of letting newcomers in.

    • Immigrants are so positive. Yes,we are not the only countries having immigration issues, but we have an advantage if we accept those immigrants. We are a country of immigrants. The current legal system that defines some aliens as illegal started in the 20th century and is outdated!

  • My parents immigrated here and so did my wife. Immigration is definitely a complicated issue and I don’t think I understand them well enough to agree 100% with Reich, but I think he makes great points. One point that many Americans against immigration reform argue is that immigrants should “wait in line.” What they don’t get is that there is NO line…the only way to immigrate is through family relations (generally marriage-based), asylum, student visa/work visa, lottery. It’s not like the majority of the undocumented immigrants could wait on line and eventually come here…they would not have that opportunity. I’m not sure how it should be reformed, but something definitely needs to be done.

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