President Donald Trump’s tight labor market from 2017 to 2019 pulled many left-behind Americans into work and jobs, setting the stage for higher economic growth in future years, says a report by JPMorgan.
“The pre-COVID experience demonstrated that a tight labor market can produce … gains in labor force participation, and, in fact, our forecast looks for well-above-trend labor force growth near 1% in the coming years,” says the report, titled “US: Population slowdown threatens trend growth.”
Each percentage gain in “labor force participation” means that roughly 1.6 million Americans are rejoining the workforce after unemployment, training, illness, or addiction. Almost 98 percent of working-age men worked during the 1960s, but the share gradually dropped below 90 percent by 2014.
JPMorgan also said that the coronavirus-caused shortage of workers also prompted U.S. companies to raise the wage-boosting productivity of their American employees, such as by providing them with more machines, robots, and computers.
“Given the experience of the past few [growth and recession] cycles, there is a good chance the [crisis-caused] bump up in the level of productivity will persist,” JP Morgan noted.
But JPMorgan ended its report with a warning to government and business:
After the welcome level shift up during the COVID-19 recession, the fundamentals point to a continuation of relatively slow productivity growth in coming years … Until business investment steps up more meaningfully, the odds remain low that productivity growth will shift higher.
JPMorgan’s report matches a December 2020 report by Goldman Sachs.
“We know that labor force participation rose when the level of immigration clearly fell during the [President Donald] Trump administration,” responded Steven Camarota, research director at the Center for Immigration Studies.
Legislators, he said, “face a stark [policy] choice: Either more immigration, and lower wages and labor force participation, or less immigration [with] higher wages, higher labor force participation, and higher productivity.”
Historically, governments have tried to grow their workforces by encouraging the creation of new families, by educating children, and by preserving the health of adults.
But since the 1960s, and especially since the 1990s, the U.S. government has also tried to extract more workers — and consumers — from poor countries.
For example, since the early 2000s, the U.S. government has already extracted roughly three million people from India and roughly three million from Central America. These migrants arrived as legal immigrants, visa workers, or illegal migrants through a largely unguarded southern border, and they help to hold down wages and to drive up consumer and real estate sales throughout the United States.
JPMorgan’s report lamented that Trump’s pro-American policies reduced the inflow of migrants:
The Census Bureau estimates that the contribution of net international migration to US population growth was about 1.07 million in 2016, before falling steadily to 0.48 million by 2020 … we estimate that the US population is missing about 3 million recent immigrants relative to pre-2017 trends, a large majority of whom would have been of working age.
… the COVID-19 pandemic and recession also drove a sharp drop in labor force participation across all age groups, with the labor force still down by about 3 million relative to pre-COVID levels and by about 6 million relative to pre-COVID trends.
Other business-backed advocates claim the migrant shortfall is larger.
But President Joe Biden’s corporate-backed deputies have opened the spigot again and are on track to import roughly 1.5 million workers and two million consumers in 2021.
Labor migration is deeply unpopular because it damages ordinary Americans’ career opportunities, cuts their wages, and raises their rents. Migration also curbs Americans’ productivity, shrinks their political clout, and widens regional wealth gaps. Migration also radicalizes Americans’ democratic, compromise-promoting civic culture, and allows elites to ignore despairing Americans at the bottom of society.
The Washington Post reported the drug deaths of 100,000 Americans from April 2020 to April 2021, and noted:
Despite the efforts of governments, health care providers, activists and others, the problem is getting worse — much worse. The new figures, which are provisional but rarely change much in final tallies, represent a 28.5 percent increase from the same period a year earlier. The financial, mental health, housing and other difficulties of the covid-19 pandemic are widely blamed for much of the increase.
Overdose deaths are not evenly distributed across the U.S. The worst of the crisis has shifted geographically over the past 20 years, as illegal users of pharmaceutical opioids turned to heroin and then illicit fentanyl. But Appalachia always has been hit hard.
The states with the worst drug-deaths include Kentucky, West Virginia, Louisiana, Ohio, Tennessee, Indiana, Missouri, and Pennsylvania. Many of those states have lost jobs, investment, and wealth because the government’s migration policy encourages coastal investors in California, Texas, New York, and other wealthy states to create in-state jobs for each wave of compliant and lower-wage migrants.
The term for the government-enabled, economy-and-drug disaster is “deaths of despair.”
Nationwide, drugs deaths stabilized from April 2017 to April 2019, around 70,000. But the death toll sharply jumped up to 94,422 during the next 12 months up to April 2020. A flood of synthetic opioids, such as fentanyl — much of which is manufactured in Mexico and China — pushed the deaths from synthetic opioids up by 22,255, to a total of 57,614. The number continued to rise in April 2020 to April 2021 period, when 100,000 Americans died, including 64,178 from synthetic opioids.
.@toddspitzeroc speaking on fentanyl-related poisonings across the county and how his office is working to convict those who manufacture and distribute fentanyl-laced pills.
Orange County has seen a 1,000% increase of fentanyl deaths over the last 5 years. pic.twitter.com/GGzC80mTaI
— Drew Van Voorhis (@DrewVanVoorhis) November 9, 2021
“The decline in work [participation since the 1960s] has been devastating for the less-educated, and it contributed to crime, the obesity crisis, and opioids,” Camarota told Breitbart News. “One of the best things that we can do for people who don’t go to college is to let the labor market be tight and keep immigration low.”
For many years, a wide variety of pollsters have shown deep and broad opposition to labor migration and the inflow of temporary contract workers into jobs sought by young U.S. graduates. This opposition is multiracial, cross-sex, non-racist, class-based, bipartisan, rational, persistent, backed by Democratic voters, and rests on the solidarity that Americans owe to each other.