Who Is A Public Charge?

According to the Washington Post, the Trump administration is considering a number of changes in current immigration policy, focusing more on the economic side of things this time around. That WP article is already cluttered with half-truths (spouted by the usual suspects at Cato and the like), so I thought it’d be a good idea to clarify the muddied waters regarding … Read more

User’s Guide to the NAS Report, 5: The Bottom Line

Immigrants have both a labor market impact and a fiscal impact. Do the economic gains generated by working immigrants outweigh the fiscal burden that immigrants impose? The NAS report (probably wisely) avoids putting two and two together, but the report contains all the necessary ingredients to let us do it ourselves. So let’s take a crack at it. There is a fiscal burden. Across all … Read more

The New Narrative: Less Immigration Is Bad

If one follows the political debate over a divisive issue for a long time, it is not rare to see ideological advocates switch to making arguments they would never have made years earlier. The political environment changed, and the claims that need to be made to further the ideological objective must change as well. Maybe … Read more

Charles Murray Changes His Mind on Low-Skill Immigration

This sounds like big news to me. I’ve always found libertarians to be the most unpersuadable people when it comes to immigration; their religious-like attachment to open borders seems totally impervious to facts. So it was a bit of a shock to come across this news article describing Charles Murray’s change of heart when it comes to low-skill immigration: Charles Murray announced … Read more

More Fake News On Mariel

It seems that the tremors set off by my Mariel paper (which first circulated privately almost two years ago; here is the published version) are still reverberating. I’m quickly losing track of all the rebuttals. But those critiques– including an early reaction written about a month after the public release of my NBER working paper by David Roodman, the Peri-Yasenov paper … Read more

Vignettes From A Communist Utopia

Fidel Castro died last night at age 90. My first reaction upon reading the news this morning was “Good riddance!” As I recount in We Wanted Workers, I have many not-so-wonderful memories of growing up in the very early years of Castro’s Cuba. It has always pained me to see Americans who are so ignorant of what a … Read more

A User’s Guide to the 2016 NAS Immigration Report

The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) has just published a major report on The Economic and Fiscal Consequences of Immigration. The National Academy panel that prepared the report consisted of about 20 social scientists, including economists, sociologists, and demographers. The project was led by Francine Blau, a professor of economics at Cornell, and Christopher Mackie, who is a … Read more

EJMR Is “Refreshing” ?!?@/!?

One consequence from my rant on peer review from a few weeks ago was that I heard from some esteemed colleagues who simply could not believe that I found Economics Job Market Rumors to be a refreshing read. I think they felt that I had either very poor reading habits or had totally lost it. I went to my Harvard office … Read more

New Paper on Refugees

Joan Monras and I have been working on a paper that presents a comprehensive documentation of the labor market consequences of refugee supply shocks; the working paper version is here. We examine four episodes: The paper differs in two key ways from what’s been done before. First, rather than “pick and choose” a different methodological approach to examine each of … Read more

A Rant on Peer Review

I have a few pet peeves. One of them is how “peer review” is perceived by far too many people as the gold standard certification of scientific authority. Any academic who’s been through the peer review process many times (as I have) knows that the process is full of potholes and is sometimes subverted by unethical behavior on the part … Read more