Axios: New York City Shrinks Due to Lower Immigration

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 25: A view of a moving truck during the coronavirus pandemic on May 25, 2020 in the Queens borough of New York City. Government guidelines encourage wearing a mask in public with strong social distancing in effect as all 50 states in the USA …
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President Donald Trump’s pro-American curbs on migration are pressuring New York’s parochial elite to accept out-of-state young Americans into the city’s economy.

“The main driver of both new business formation and population growth in New York has historically been international immigration,” says a September 17 Axios.com article. “So long as immigration remains suppressed, New York will suffer,” says the article, titled “The math of New York City’s recovery.”

The city’s economy has been hammered by the coronavirus crash and the population exit, Axios said.

“New York has suffered more than 23,000 deaths from COVID-19, and its economic activity is projected to plunge by an astonishing 12.9% this year — a much bigger contraction than the expected national decline of 4.9%,” Axios reported.

“The people leaving New York are disproportionately older, richer, more established professionals,” the Axios article says.

The city’s traditional fix — international immigration — is being blocked by Trump’s pro-American immigration policies. Axios reported:

The catch: The main driver of both new business formation and population growth in New York has historically been international immigration. So long as immigration remains suppressed, New York will suffer.

The obvious alternative fix for city officials is to change the city’s economy, laws, and amenities to attract some of the 300 million Americans living West of the Hudson River, said Mark Krikorian, director of the Center for Immigration Studies. He continued:

Manhattan is the distilled, purest example of an [elite economy] with rich Americans serviced by low-paid immigrant workers — and that’s an exploitative model of society that we should not want to perpetuate or replicate.

New York elites do not want Americans migrating from Nebraska and other states — or even the city’s outer boroughs — to fill up jobs and apartments in their city, Krikorian said. “They would rather not have to deal with American labor – such as black or Hispanic young people — who really might need more training to do these jobs,” he said, adding:

Immigration enables big coastal cities to disengage from the American labor market because there is an unending flow of people from abroad who are much more likely to be obedient and deferential [to local elites]. If you’re a limousine liberal in Los Angeles or New York, an obedient and deferential person from the third-world is your ideal employee because you get a feeling of noblesse oblige by helping the downtrodden.

But if New York’s governing elite cannot import foreign migrants, it will be pressured to attract Americans by reviving the cities’ schools, law enforcement, pay rates, and amenities, he said. 

They may have to address the issues that are causing both Americans and immigrants to leave New York. People are leaving because taxes are too high, the schools stink, and law enforcement is worsening.

[International] immigration doesn’t fix those problems — all it does is enable the political and business elites to avoid grappling with the root problems. [For elites] Immigration is a crutch because immigrants, once they get established, aren’t going to stay in a place with crappy policing, roads, and schools.

New York City and its five boroughs have a total population of roughly 8.3 million, according to a city report. From April 2010 to July 2019, the city gained 496,000 international migrants plus 565,000 more births than deaths. But it also lost 900,000 people who migrated to other states, marking a minuscule population gain of 162,000 over the decade, not counting the 2020 coronavirus exodus.

However, the Axios author suggests that the city’s troubles could be alleviated — without significant reforms — if more graduates would just squeeze themselves into smaller apartments throughout New York:

With property taxes still rising, most residential landlords will not be able to keep their properties empty while waiting for rents to rebound. So they will rent them out at much lower market-clearing rates, to less wealthy individuals who require less space per person.

The math: If residential space stays constant but the number of square feet per person goes down, New York’s population will end up rising, rather than falling.

Lower rents also mean higher disposable incomes, to be spent at new local establishments that will rise where old ones were felled by the pandemic. The newer businesses will also be much less likely to cater to the [remaining] rich elites.

The Axios article even claims that the coronavirus epidemic could prove beneficial to the city’s claimed status as a vibrant metropolis, saying:

New York City is suffering its worst year in decades. The years to come, partly as a result, could be some of its very best … Insofar as COVID-19 increases the churn of New York City’s population, that will only help it over the long term.

Axios’s report sidelined the social impact of the city’s cheap labor economy. But NACLA.org reported September 1 how the disease and crash hurt illegals used in New York City:

The In Situ study, however, indicates that New York’s Latinx immigrants have experienced unemployment levels (69 percent) more than three times greater than the Latinx population in general. Fewer than one in 10 Latin American immigrant workers have managed to maintain their jobs and regular working hours. Nearly one quarter have seen their hours reduced. Since the vast minority of New York’s Latin American immigrant population is ineligible for temporary cash assistance and unemployment benefits, 56 percent of households report suffering a total loss of income.

The widespread loss of employment and income has had a dramatic impact on household finances. As a result of job losses, nearly 40 percent of Latin American immigrant families reported being unable to cover their basic monthly expenses. In addition, many migrant households lack significant savings. More than 40 percent of families reported having absolutely no savings and only five percent of households had sufficient funds to subsist for more than three months. For many families, lost earnings and limited savings translate into increasing reliance on credit cards and greater debt.

The U.S. Census Bureau reported September 15 that legal immigrants who earned citizenship had a poverty rate of nine percent in 2019, while non-citizen migrants — including many illegals — had a poverty rate of 16.3 percent, or roughly one-in-six.

New York’s financial executives are donating more funds to Democrat candidates than to GOP candidates, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

Nationwide, immigration shifts wealth creation towards New York and the coasts by annually importing roughly one million immigrants and visa workers who are grateful to get low-wage jobs in the high-rent districts along the coasts. This government-delivered workforce reduces the pressure on investors to create new jobs in the GOP-dominated central states, so reducing wealth growth outside the Democrat-dominated coasts.

Biden’s 2020 plan includes several proposals to expand the inflow of foreign workers and consumers into the United States. He promises to let mayors import foreign workers for local jobs, let companies import more visa workers for college jobs, expand the inflow of chain-migration migrants, suspend immigration enforcement against illegals, dramatically increase the inflow of poor refugees, and also provide more healthcare and other aid to arriving migrants.

The huge inflow of migrants will lower Americans’ wages, transfer more wages to investors, shift jobs from the interior states to the coasts, reduce investment in wealth-generating technology, and exacerbate the chaotic diversity that has damaged U.S. society and politics.

In contrast, President Donald Trump says he is pushing a “Pro-American Immigration” policy.

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