The Instigator
Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
4 Points

THS Free Immigration

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/25/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,827 times Debate No: 35059
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (5)
Votes (2)




Welcome to round one:) Please be respective, I don't mind swearing but don't attack me or anyone else personally and I will treat you the same. As I am prop I will start by defining the round and introducing my points, etc.

1st round : 2 points
2nd round : final point + explaining why the other side isn't correct
3rd round : summary
(idc too much just thought it would organize things nicely)

Thanks for accepting!

This house SUPPORTS free immigration

TH: The World
Free Immigration: Open migration throughout the world for all with the exception of serious criminals.
Model: We propose that over the course of 5 " 10 years current immigration policy will slowly be dissolved in favor of open boarders and by the end of that time frame migrating to a country would be a simple registration process; verifying identities, accounting for people and checking for outstanding criminal warrants. Immigrants will be given a Permanent Resident Status, as will illegal immigrants within the country. The main differences from citizens are that residents cannot:
vote in elections;
run for elected office;
hold the country"s passports;

-We on team proposition believe that equality has no boundaries
-It is immoral draw a line around a group of people and tell them they deserve more educational and employment opportunities, political stability, a more prosperous economy, and healthier living conditions than others outside of such an arbitrary barrier.
-But yet, that is exactly what the world today looks like.
-A world where whether you live comfortably relies on one factor: Where you were born
-People don"t get to choose the nation they are born into, but they have to suffer the consequences
-We support this resolution because it eradicates this kind of "birth lottery" where your quality of life depends on the country you find yourself living in.
-The motion does this by allowing people to change their situation, by moving to developed countries with more education and employment opportunities
-Under the current point system, which is seen in the majority of first world countries, Governments evaluate immigrants based on their levels of education and their income
-This creates a system biased towards the wealthy and the educated, leaving out a majority of third world natives who don't have the ability to achieve an education and wealth within their home country
-These restrictions give rise to illegal immigrants
-According to the Department of Homeland Security's Office of Immigration Statistics (OIS), an estimated 11.5 million unauthorized immigrants resided in the United States as of January 2011.
-immigrants resort to entering a country unlawfully out of desperation
-They wouldn't subject themselves and their families to the hardships of being an illegal immigrants, had their need for a better life not been so demanding
-So, because this motion eradicates the birth lottery and allows every human freedom to better their quality of life, we believe it benefits people regardless of their country of origin

-On a large scale, labour mobility is predicted to lead to a boost in world GDP by about 50-150% according to Michael Clemens at the Center for Global Development.
-So, on a utilitarian front, free immigration is immensely advantageous
-More specifically, I would like to look closely at the benefits to the country immigrants are moving from

Country of Origin:

-Remittances are the flow of money from working foreigners in the first world sending money back to the third world
-Remittances from immigrants back to their home countries are vital, not only to the individual families, but to entire countries as well
-Between 2006 and 2007, Latino-immigrants working in North America sent 36.3 billion $ back to Latin America
-World Bank estimates in 2009, in nine countries remittances were equal to more than one fifth of the GDP (gross domestic product)
-These are just some examples that demonstrates the effects immigrants in foreign countries can have on their homelands.
-By allowing immigrants to prosper in the first world, we extend the ability for these immigrants who weren"t able to contribute to their native country"s economy before, to do so through remittances
-Moreover we expand this ability
-Allowing for more workers and thus, more money flowing back to the third world
Migrants Moving Home
-The CEO of the Overseas Indian Facilitation Centre has stated that over 100,000 Indian immigration are said to have gone home last year from Canada alone, and the number is growing
-Immigrants under our model are able to utilize the education system of the developed nations and then move back home with better opportunities for them in their native countries.
-This transfer of knowledge, skills and technology back home is undeniably advantageous to the developing countries immigrants will leave behind.
-It allows immigrants to prosper in there own economy, something they could not have done before without the education and skills they acquire in the first world.

Country Being Immigrated To:
-We have an aging generation that is significantly larger than the one after it
-Statistic Canada has said that by 2031, the proportion of seniors could reach 23% of Canada"s total population
-As this generation retires, we are left with countless jobs that cannot be filled by the significantly smaller younger generation
-Something that cannot be done when we continue to put restrictions on our boarders
-Immigrants under this resolution will fill this void by increasing the workforce
-Moreover, immigrants will also grow our workforce
-The economy will respond to immigration by increasing demand for labour.
-So, the assertion that "immigrants take the current workforce's jobs" is simply not true
-In fact, the free movement of immigrants between EU members states has actually increased the amount of jobs created in Great Britain, a country of high demand to be immigrated to. A ratio of 13 jobs created for every single job lost, according to the Migration Advisory Committee.
-This also solves the issue of illegal immigrants, now they are free to pursue better jobs than the currently have under status quo
-Not only will these immigrants work, they also will be taxed and will spend money on domestic goods and services
-This contributes to a healthy economy


First of all, I'd like to warmly welcome my opponent to this website! This is a topic I actually care quite a bit about, so I'd also like to thank her for giving me the oppertunity to argue a case against it. In this round I'll outline my position, why I feel that way, and why pro is wrong.

Right now in New Zealand, immigrants almost wholly settle in Auckland, because that's where the biggest international airport is. New Zealand is a pretty attractive place; lots of people want to live there. The most obvious immediate impact of this is that demand for land in Auckland soars. Some of those moving will be wealthy, so the wealthy start bidding up property prices. This becomes a particularly big problem when you've got immigrants from countries like China, whose government issues interest-free loans for buying foreign property to all its citizens.

A second impact is that all the people are now in immigration-friendly cities. The economy works on supply and demand. If you're a business, you need to move your supply to where the demand is. As a result, all the businesses move to operating in immigration-friendly cities, and they take all their precious little jobs with them.

The result of this is that on the outskirts of the city, all the poor have to squabble for property, because they can't go elsewhere, because their job is in the city. I like to call the places where these poor are gradually driven into "ghettos". These also gradually attract those without work, who literally have no means to move. These places are instant hotspots for crime because the people are desperate, their concentration makes it hard to catch them, their forced style of living makes them shunned by the rest of society anyway, and public services are difficult to provide. South Auckland is now a developing Ghetto.

Historically this has always proven true when a city has grown too big, too fast. It happened in Beijing, so before their Olympics they literally bulldozed them as the best means to solve the problem. As a result, the poor lost everything. China has now strongly limited internal migration. It happened in London after the industrial revolution. The ghetto there was called Whitechapel, and it allowed the infamous Whitechapel murders to happen. After the EU was made, massive ghettos sprung up in all the big cities. Berlin's future is the reason why Germany didn't want Turkey to join. Now Berlin has Turkish ghettos. Go figure.

In addition, the poor begin to hate the rich. From the mid-1800s until world war 2 in Europe, the rich were often Jewish. There was strong anti-semitism in Whitechapel, leading to a suspected Ripper message that was clearly anti-semitic. Hitler was able to capitalise on the widespread German fear of Jews forcing them into camps, which led to a certain infamous historical event. In America, the rich are often white, and the poor are often black. Racial conflict permeates American history, but we forget that it's really associated with ghettos - the Bronx, Oakland, the "west side", the "east side" etc.

An alternative model available in a select few places where land is plentiful and non-valuable, notably Mexico City (with sprawled as the result of urbanisation via internal migration), is to build a lot more houses. As anybody who is familiar with the crime rate in Mexico City will tell you, that didn't work out very well for Mexico either.

If you want to increase the rich-poor divide, the best way is to force the poor into ghettos.

Pro's model gives "permanent residents" exactly the same rights as black people had in South Africa until Nelson Mandela challenged the Apartheid and changed things. The best way to stop politicians caring about people is to take away their vote. Politicians didn't care about black people in the USA either until Martin Luther King changed things. The model is bad because it creates a second class of citizen. Since they can't vote, I'm sure nobody will mind if their rights are abridged further. Since they can't vote, why not just take from them as the rich, voting class will?

Even if many of them can vote (ie because they're simply poor driven off their land), that's not the perception, because for all intents and purposes they are no different from anybody else living in the ghetto, apart from their right to vote, so they get ignored too. Why should the government build nice schools in the ghetto? They'll never pay the cost back via taxes because their income is too low. It will immediately be vandalised and probably robbed. Or good healthcare? What's the point when gangs and drugs run rampant? It's a losing battle!

The way to have an equal society is with equal rights. There's no escaping that simple fact.

This is a nice segway into my rebuttal points. Due to character limits I'll keep these brief and expand in the next round.

I broadly agree with the premise, but the way to achieve this is to make nations more equal. Stop the exploitation of the third world. Actually, let's end this whole idea of a third world altogether. It's not like some countries are destined to be poor. Look at Africa. Oil, precious minerals available nowhere else on Earth, on which the whole first world relies on all the time - and this is the poorest continent in the world!? Asia used to be the poorest, and they proved that no nation is destined for poverty. If inequality is the problem, the solution is not opening immigration to move the poor from one ghetto to another, but stopping inequality.

A. Remittances
The most remittant countries in the world are Tajikistan, Moldova, and Honduras, Haiti not far behind. This is not a recent trend - these are the kinds of countries that have whole economies based around remittances. And these are failures, because they are so poor that the remittances are spent on necessities. When disaster struck Haiti the inflow of aid and remittances did nothing to change their fortunes. By contrast, India's remittances are only 3% of their GDP, and indeed, India does have their own working industry - and had it long before mass Indian emigration began. China's is less than 1%. The transfer of skills argument only works if they have any incentive to actually go back. For India and China they do, because those are rich countries. For, say, Nigeria or Tajikistan, that argument absolutely fails.

Once again, this should not be required. Remittances are a form of exploitation of the third world by the first, making them increasingly dependant on the income as the money doesn't generate any real value for the local economy, because all the production is actually happening offshore.

B. Hosts
At the same time as the population is aging, unemployment is paradoxically increasing - especially in the first world. America recently set records for unemployment, as did Europe. And it wasn't among the old - it is the youth who are crying out for jobs and can't wait for the older generation to retire so that they too might have a secure future.

You can't have both remittances and local investment (jobs etc). It's zero sum because immigrants don't magically create money - either they send what they earn away, or they invest in their host, or some combination, but as they send more away the host country loses money, and as they invest more locally the host country loses benefit.

Creating investment in host countries by foreigners, and by extension creating jobs, means that jobs are not created where they are needed, which is in poor countries.

Moreover, these are not created until after the immigrants have earned some money, so the assumption is that they can find jobs. Demand for labour is not the impact of immigration, but supply. Labour isn't very mobile even with open borders - if you've been a train mechanic all your life, and now those jobs have gone to Korea, it's tough to be forced to go to Korea. Worse yet is if Korea is full of ghettos.

The resolution is negated
Debate Round No. 1


First, I'd like to thank my competitor for not only accepting my challenge, but also welcoming me:)
Before I get into some refutation, I'd like to paraphrase a famous thought experiment by John Rawls.
It goes something like this:

Imagine you are at a table with a group of people creating an entirely new society, but there is a catch, afterwards you would be randomly placed into that society. You would not know your your class position or social status, nor would you know your fortune in the distribution of natural assets and abilities, your intelligence, strength, and the like. You would have no idea what your race, gender, sexual orientation, or home country would be. So what kind of society would you create?

I would hope you would create one with open boarders. One where, even if you where born into a nation with poor social services, you could easily obtain an education by moving countries. Remember, we already see this happening within countries. The movement within nations allows say, a young teen from a small town attend university at the best schools in their country.

So lets dive into my oppositions first to points. Firstly, the topic of "ghettos" was brought up. Though for the sake of not offending anyone or seeming borderline racist, I will refer to these areas as geographical clusters. So, I would argue that these cluster happen in order to preserve culture. I support the idea that places like China Town and Little Italy actually contribute to multiculturalism within society and are a generally positive thing. It helps creat peace and friendship amoung different ethnicities. Moreover, these culture clusters do not contribute to an increase in crime rates. Tim Wadsworth, a professor of sociology at the University of Colorado studied the effects of immigration on American cities and concluded that: the cities that experience the greatest growth in immigration were the same one that were experiencing the greatest declines in violent crime. Plus, immigrants aren't moving countries in order to live poorer lives. They move to developed countries in seak of education and employment opurtunities, which rich nations can gladly give them. The idea is simple: more people in a country means more people buying products, which means more people needed to create and supply goods and services. Jobs are created. I'd like to also point out that in order to stabilize the population at its current level, Japan would need to increase the immigrant population from about two million to roughly 17 million immigrants by 2050. Put differently, whereas it now admits in the order of 50,000 immigrants a year, it would need to admit something like 650,000 a year instead. Under the current system, which boasts quotas, this just isn't possible. Despite your assertion that they won't be able to pay income taxes, etc, I'd like to point out that immigrants are not lazy, uneducated leeches on society, they are people. Even if they are not the upper classmen of the world, blue collar workers are the back bone of society! Lastly, I'd just like to say that, even the poorest of the poor among first world streets are living emensely better than the poor in third world nations. Even, if immigrants can't obtain a job, they will still do better than they did before.

Now, cons second point. I'm afraid you quite misunderstand how permanent resident status works. Resisdents can easily obtain citizenship, and do under our current system. Which means, being able to achieve all the benefits that follow, including voting. The reason I decided to include this in my model is because it means that it will be easier for migrants to move back home, transferring their aquired money, sills, and technology along with them. Thus, improving conditions in the countries being moved from.

Finally, my last point:


"Doing well is the result of doing good," In this quote, Ralph Waldo Emerson was talking about capitalism. This is the idea that success stems from continuous progression due to competition in the free market. We can compare these ideologies to what a world that supports free immigration would look like. If a countries wishes to do well, they must intern do good for their people
-in the world of free immigration if you are not happy with the state of your nation you have the freedom to migrate elsewhere
-if it is required of a government to please its people in order to keep up the population and in turn have a prosperous society
-All governments will be pressured to create more educational and employment opportunities, political stability, a more prosperous economy, and healthier living conditions for their citizens.
-this is beneficial for individuals and collective

Individual Citizens:
-people have a right to sovereignty and a government has a responsibility to uphold it
-this is not how a lot of societies work today as the people are either denied power or they are not aware of the power they posses
-by creating competition between countries for citizens, the people are back in control
-people now have the choice to live under a government that will allow them to prosper but also have the power to change and challenge governments to improve living condition
-With the implementation of this resolution, you are supporting governments by not only ballots, but with presence in the country and contribution to its well being
-this will improve human rights, social services and societies functionality
-the individual gets to choose the legal regime they want to live under, the basic principles and values they live by, the amount and type of rights that they possess and they can choose this by moving to country that provides this
-what we foresee is people continuously choosing better and more equal human rights so intern governments will start actively striving to create these better rights for its residents so that it can have a population to govern
-this type of pressure will benefit the collective

Global Market:
-in society we strive for innovations and progress
-this is limited when governments are not required to please their people (this applies the autocracies and dictatorships)
-and as it is today in governments are somewhat responsible to their people but if the people are not pleased the most dramatic consequences is rebellion and protests
-we believe this will eliminate the need for rebellion and in turn the consequences will be people leaving the countries
-governments will now be required to strive for innovation progress and support from its citizens
-this will give them the motivation to become better and this will increase prosperity for the governments
-once all the governments in the world competing to innovate we see the world prospering
-we take a look at the economy where the competition for consumers promotes entrepreneurism and innovation for better products (very similarly this is how the world would work)
-we as consumers have driven products to become eco-friendly and this can also happen on a bigger scale by putting pressure on the governments to be more environmentally friendly
-this is just one example of societal progress that is foreseeable with this resolution
-free immigration benefits the individual and the collective world by creating such competition for a better society.

I have proved today that the vast amount of progressive benefits that the free market provides for our economy can be mirrored in the world of free immigration, I demonstrated the economical benefits as well as the need for equal opportunity. I invite the voters to agree that free immigration benefits all.


I thank pro for continuing her case.

In the last round I explained why migration within a country is bad enough, citing the precedents of Mexico and China. I'm all for social mobility, but physical mobility does not achieve that. I'll focus on that in this round by extending my points and rebuttals.

1. Ghettos
Being poor is part of nobody's culture. It's true that sometimes ghettos are strongly associated with particular religious or ethnic groups, but these are generalisations usually made by people not in the ghetto. The ghetto attracts all the poor because it's the only place where they can afford property prices.

It isn't part of anybody's culture to be uneducated or sick either. I'm for other cultures, but ghettos destroy them by associating them with everything that's wrong with our society.

The most obvious contemporary example of this is Israel, which has seen very steady and strong migration. Due to land competition, the poorer Palestinians have been forced into ghettos like Gaza. So much "peace and friendship" exists between these great ethnicities that they've launched all out wars against each other more times than anybody cares to count.

It's true that concentrations of inequality create crime - NOT immigration by itself. At no point in this debate have I opposed immigration. That's why Tim Wadsworth's study (although his least-square statistical model DID show a correlation between more immigrant communities and more crime) showed that reduction in violent crime. Maybe that's because they didn't just let everybody in and shunt them into ghettos.

Most migrants don't go to live poorer lives, for sure. Not all of those shunted into the ghettos are migrants. It's not migrants who go into ghettos, it's the poor. Their influx drives up the price of local education and healthcare as well, these largely being fixed government-controlled assets. It's the ghettos that end up the worst.

Pro thinks even the ghetto is better than third-world countries. This depends on the ghetto in question, but it's not a fair comparison. The biggest difference is the stigma. When I give microloans, I want to help people in Angola or Zambia - giving to somebody in the USA is just sad. After all, the USA is a wealthy nation. But there are people in the USA who are just as poor as those in Zambia, and it's because they live in the ghetto that nobody want's to help them.

2. Second-class citizens
The best way to make it harder to go back to your home country is to make it harder to prove your identity. Pro's model is clearly not in the interests of moving back because she makes it illegal for her so-called "permanent residents" to obtain local passports. This means all the migrants need to go their consulates regularly, forcing them to live in cities with consulates (which grow ghettos).

Under the status quo we have visas. These allow you to temporarily visit a country so you can work and take what you will back home. Most countries put almost no restrictions on how many people can get a visa, and when they do they are largely political (ie many Arab countries restrict visas to those who have been to Israel). So the problem that pro is trying to solve by creating second-class citizens doesn't even do a good job of solving the problem, and moreover it has already been solved.

The fact that pro says her second-class citizens can become first-class citizens does not change the fact that there are second-class citizens. Even if only 10% of a ghetto is second-class, that still changes the entire perception of that place in the eyes of everybody else. It reinforces the perception that the people there are lesser, which creates incentives to deny citizenship.

The kind of society we should create is one where education is given to the poor. It's not location that denies them education. Consider Congo, where most of the population hasn't even been to primary school. That's mostly because there just aren't that many schools there. Coupled with the fact that Christians and Muslims in that country have been at each other's throats since forever, it's easy to see how foreign multinationals can just drop by and casually take their oil, precious stones and other amazing resources.

The same thing is true of healthcare etc.

The people in countries like Congo should be helped. Moving them from ghetto to ghetto does not help them. Bringing education to all the ghettos, including their country, does. Pro ignored this material from last round.

A. Remittances
Pro dropped this point.

I'll extend my rebuttal though. It's not as though the only restrictions on movement are political. Consider economics. If your boss runs away to a first-world country, why on earth would she shut down your factory? You need to stay or lose your job. But all the money your boss makes is being spent in a first-world country. Why would she send any back when the status quo is doing her well? It's a passive income anyway. Similarly, there are social restrictions. Religious restrictions (for example, Muslim women). Plane tickets themselves are massively expensive by third world standards.

B. Hosts
Pro ignored my points, but anyway.

What job creation requires is investment. Some immigrants can provide this. But by doing so, they are forfeiting investment into the nation that they emigrated from, reducing their fortunes still further. Poor countries are those that need jobs.

That investment takes time, and usually happens outside of the ghetto. Economists call them switching costs. They increase the faster the growth rate of the city is as there is more infrastructure to make and less infrastructure to make it with.

Rich nations do not gladly give jobs to whoever can take them. Rich nations reluctantly give jobs to those willing to earn the lowest wages. There's a lot of those people around, so rich nations don't NEED more. In fact there's all too much unemployment.

Why Japan needs to stabilise its population is beyond me. It is overpopulated as is.

I agree immigrants are not necessarily leeches on society (although it's pretty clear that some people do emigrate just to leech off another country's education or healthcare, then go right back home, and pro seems to support this). I'm saying that the poor - those from the ghetto - can't pay so much tax, and if they did it would be unjust.

I don't accept this premise that free markets are entirely great, but has anybody else noticed that free markets do not tend towards perfect competition? The goal here is equality, but since when was the free market equal? Free markets are all about choice, but in a perfect world you shouldn't have to choose because all nations have decent education, a decent economy, and decent healthcare.

In fact government pressures to accept sudden foreign deals to provide infastructure
as a result of sudden emigration is bad. That's what pretty much happened when Bolivia outsourced their everything, leaving all the poor to die to dehydration because the free market wouldn't even provide water to those unable to pay. I'd be mighty scared if Coca-Cola ran the schools in Bangladesh. But that's the only way poor nations can compete. It's not like Bangladesh's government just decided to be poor and told its people to live with it.

People have no absolute natural right to soverignty. Governments are perfectly OK to require, say, seatbelts to be worn in cars. Pro should justify their claim for individual citizens.

As for this idea that dictators will just say "oh, my bad", that's crazy. The vast majority of Zimbabwe has already dashed off, mostly illegally, and that country is no better state for it. Nor does the political system dictate social or economic fortunes, China being a good example. But even if it did, protests and revolutions will still happen. The American Civil War happened in a democracy in protest by the southern states.

I look forward to the final round.
Debate Round No. 2


Rebuttal Only Round

I thank con for his extension. Throughout this debate, my three contentions have discussed in length the benefits to the countries of origin, the countries being moved to, the individual living in a world with free immigration, as well as the collective as a whole. I have presented the idea that all people should have equal opportunity, the economic benefits the resolution would bring, and last round I made a comparison between the free market and free immigration. Seeing as we can achieve the same results capitalism brings to our economy, to the world and politics. I will firstly refute my oppositions extensions on his points. Then, rebuild my three points.

R1. "Ghettos"

As con did not give any reason as to why cities would start growing large areas attract poor, and merely asserted it, I assumed he was discussing cultural clusters. I suppose it was wrong of me to assume. Rather, it seems he is trying to make a point grounded in poverty. Unfortunately, my entire second point was about how immigrants will grow the economies of the host countries. Immigrants create jobs, I can't reaffirm this enough. This entire fear-mongering point is an assertion. How are we associating immigrants with everything that's wrong? What is "everything that's wrong?"

Is it poverty? Michael Clemens at the Center for Global Development, open borders could lead to a boost in world GDP by about 50-150%. The GDP gains will be felt most by the world’s poorest, and absolute poverty will reduce dramatically.

Is it unemployment? The free movement of immigrants between EU members states has actually increased the amount of jobs created in Great Britain. A ratio of 13 jobs created for every single job lost, according to the Migration Advisory Committee.

On your point about Israel, Palestine and Israel have been threatening each other forever! This is hardly a fair example. These two nations are in the middle of a WAR. I highly doubt in a world with open boarders, where you are free to live where ever you please, people would be moving to the countries their nations are fighting against. Individuals are far more likely to move to the West.

Your point on crime has been hitched to your "ghetto" assertion. HOW are people "shunting" the poor into ghettos? Under this model, you have the choice to live where ever. You have the freedom to pursue your education and the ability to become employed.

Of course living on the streets of Vancouver is more advantageous then on the streets of Harare. In the first world, locals have medical care, clean tap water, food stamps, shelters, etc. Why would anyone move if it wasn't? I would also argue that there are so many good people who continuously donate to say, their local food bank. Donations don't go to the third world. Charity is given to everyone in poverty, not just foreigners.

R2. "Second-class citizens"

I can't believe you continued on with this point. First, this ENTIRE point isn't opposing to the motion, it's opposing the model I presented. It doesn't prove AT ALL why we shouldn't open boarders. Second, let me say that you extending this point shows how little research you've done. PERMANENT RESIDENTS EXIST RIGHT NOW UNDER THE CURRENT SYSTEM. It's not illegal for them to obtain local passports, actually residents are encouraged to obtain local passports. Please, dear god, wikipedia permanent residency before you extend on this point further. New Zealand even uses this system.

Moving on, your solution is not going to solve the issue. To get a work visa you have to become sponsored by a company. You have to have temporary employment set up. Now, what happens to say, a young lady in a developing nation who has been denied education her entire life? Will a company offer her a job? Obviously not, she has no way of meeting the criteria. She is lucky if she isn't one of the fifth of the population who can't even write their own names.

Equal Opportunity

It's fantastic that you agree world poverty sucks and the inequality is unjust, but who in the world has the trillions of dollars in their back pocket needed give the third world all the schools and hospitals they need? The resolution is actually doing something. It's solving the problem. It's creating a better world for so many men, women and children. More than 2.3 trillion dollars has been given to the third world already, how much more would we need to give? "Bringing education to all the ghettos, including their country, does." So how is anyone supposed to do that? How are we going to suddenly stop inequality? My solution is practical, yours is imaginary.


Remittances: Sorry I just didn't really see a counter point there at all. You talked about how vital remittances are to receiving countries. Under the resolution, remittances back home increase. Diasporas and remittances are immensely beneficial. They do more than send money, they send technology, skills and resources. They fuel business. There are hardly any restrictions, at least not enough to stop $45 billion getting remit to India and 34 billion getting remit to China in 2008. It's not bosses sending money back, it's mainly between families. They do it because they care about their loved ones.

Migrants Moving Home: Con has yet to argue this point. This, coupled with diasporas is what truly develops the third world and industrializes it. Receiving educated, skilled workers can do nothing but good. Why do they move back? Because it's their home. The place they grew up. Where their relatives are. Remember the statistics I have presented: The CEO of the Overseas Indian Facilitation Centre has stated that over 100,000 Indian immigration are said to have gone home last year from Canada alone, and the number is growing.

Filling The "Baby Boomer" Gap: The only counter argument from the last round was as follows: "Why Japan needs to stabilise its population is beyond me. It is overpopulated as is." It's because they do not have enough younger workers to support the elderly, retiring generation. The problem is the population spikes and then falls. This is seen throughout the world. The problem is we have the baby boomers retiring and needing health care as they get older, but not enough tax-paying younger workers to afford it.

Job Creation: Will wages fall? Not when other things change at the same time. Those immigrants who increase the supply of labor also demand goods and services, causing the demand for labor to increase. Second, immigrants don’t simply shift the supply of labor. Labor is heterogeneous. When the immigrants have different skills than the native-born population, they complement the native-born labor rather than substitute for them. Many of the immigrants to the United States are either extremely highly-skilled or very low-skilled. Yet most native-born labor falls somewhere in between. To the extent that immigrants are complementing U.S. labor, they can increase, rather than decrease, the wages of the native-born.

"In fact there's all too much unemployment." I agree! Good thing free migration creates jobs!

"(although it's pretty clear that some people do emigrate just to leech off another country's education or health care, then go right back home, and pro seems to support this)" Because they don't "leech", they earn. Immigrants pay taxes like every other person in the country and have just as much right to social services as first world natives. All poor people don't pay as much in tax, it doesn't mean they don't deserve services.

Free Market Comparison

The idea is competition fuels progress. It's not foreign deals. You obviously don't get this point either. Let me clarify, under open boarders, governments will loose citizens if they aren't happy. Governments want people to govern over. They will improve to get a bigger population. It's a metaphor. The governments are the product and the citizens are the consumers. If they aren't happy with the product, they'll switch.

Thank you and vote pro! :)


First of all, let me congratulate pro on a very impressive case. It's been a fun debate.

1. Ghettos

I did not merely assert that cities will start growing ghettos, I gave empirical evidence (such as Auckland) and logical analysis (land value bidding pool diversity - if I wanted to be technical I could have called this point "gentrification") to back it up. Pro ignored this, asking questions like "HOW are people "shunting" the poor into ghettos?" that I answered two rounds ago. She ignores that the choice is not to live wherever, but wherever you can afford, so land values automatically shunt the poor around. It has nothing to do with who has jobs or how much those jobs are worth.

Pro's counter has mostly been her economic material, which I deal with in my rebuttals. Even if a nation's economy is thriving, that does not mean everybody is living well though. China is an extremely wealthy country but it has many millions in poverty. Ghettos are the root of poverty, which is the root of crime and exploitation.

Palestinians believe Israel is their land, more or less. They'd love to go there if it weren't for the fact that Israel has a brutal separate set of laws applying to them. Such incentives to keep out the undesirable I deal with in my other point. Similarly, Israel is steadily building new houses, called "settlements", in Palestine all the time.

Pro does not disagree that there is stigma against poor living in rich places, and indeed makes it sound like Vancouver shouldn't have a population of poor at all (I wonder if the downtown eastside might disagree with her here). Sure, some people are particularly altruistic, but for the poor any reason not to give them money is a problem. What immigrants forget is the long-term consequences of their migration.

This is the most important point of the debate as all of pro's points depend on this not accruing.

2. Second class citizens

My opponent has failed to present a viable model for the resolution. That's because the resolution doesn't have any good models.

My opponent has asserted a particular legal context with second-class citizens that exist already, and declared that the rest of the world must follow this model. I know full well permanent residency exists, and I thought my arguments made it quite clear that it's a mistake. I'm ashamed of the fact that my mother, who happens to be a permanent resident in New Zealand of 30 years, has very different civil rights to me. It's a mistake that must be corrected, and pro has been unable to defend it.

If somebody won't find work on a work visa because they can't write their own name, they also won't find work if they become an automatic permanent resident, so pro's just shot down her own economy point. In any event this rebuttal does not negate the fact pro is making a second class of citizens, just distracting from it.

R1. Equal Opportunity

I never said my alternative would be easy. It will take tens of trillions of dollars, and more importantly, it will take a lot of time. You can't suddenly stop inequality. And the reason why is because even if you had infinite money and willpower, there's a reason why poor countries don't just build their own schools without pay. Usually it's because they're too preoccupied with meeting the demands of oligarchs overseas or because they're at war with somebody, all too often themselves.

My opponent does not have a "solution". She wants to move the entire population of Chad into London and watch what happens (that's not what would happen, since only maybe ten people in Chad are wealthy enough to afford the flight to America, but it's nice to dream anyway). Currently countries like Chad are exploited. Unless we end that exploitation, it won't stop just because the exploited have gone from one ghetto to another.

R2. Economics

A. Remittances
I told you how remittant economies were failed economies like Tajikistan, not that remittances were vital. I told you how India and China specifically are not remittant economies. Pro also did not rebut my claim that remittances are a form of exploitation by the first world.

Pro adds that remittances are usually within a family in rebuttal to my claim of a lack of incentive when wealthy emigrants have every incentive to create economic barriers to movement. While caring about family is noble when it happens, the best it can do is create family dynasties, as happened when many wealthy indians moved to England while India was a British colony.

B. Migrants moving home
I gave significant rebuttal to the transfer of skills argument also. It works for if your home country is doing well enough for you to be able to support yourself there. If there's a war because all those with enough interest to do so have emigrated leaving the land starved of resources, this does not happen. Loads of people from Tonga have been to Australian schools but that's hardly made a dent in Tonga's GDP growth since that began happening.

C. Filling the baby boomer gap
Obviously pro missed the part in both rounds when I told her exactly why there is no gap to fill - young people are already available to fill the gap. If the world had a labor shortage and the third world had a labor surplus then maybe my opponent would have a point. In fact the opposite is true - which is why unemployment is so high in the first world now and why many third world countries rely on programs like VSA to get workers from the first world.

Lack of taxation on younger workers is a by-product of a lack of jobs due to widespread unemployment and low taxes. A simple solution, already being implemented in many countries, is to either raise the retirement age or raise taxes.

D. Job Creation
I told you that jobs are created via investment. If you invest in a rich country, a poor country misses out, so jobs are lost in Tanzania when a Tanzanian invests his money in France instead. That's also why remittances undermine job creation.

Some immigrants do attempt to go to a country and never earn a dime, only staying for as long as they don't need to pay tax because they're in a hospital bed or still in school. Perhaps it is arguable all humans deserve services, but it cannot be argued that these people did nothing to contribute to them.

I didn't say jobs would be replaced, I said they would move to other cities and countries (otherwise, why not just outsource?). I agree that there would be more demand for goods, but the idea that companies will pay more just because they earn more is stupid - wages are driven by people's expectations of wages, so if migrants are coming in who don't mind working for practically nothing, they get paid what they want and the company makes more money for shareholders.

The concept of labour as hetrogenous (ie that there are special "immigrant jobs") is wrong, discriminatory and counter to pro's points on both the principle of equality and filling the baby boomer gap. As much as Japanese make great sushi chefs, there's nothing stopping me as a non-Japanese making really great sushi instead.

R3. Free Markets

Competition creates winners and losers. That's not equal opportunities for you, that's winners and losers. Governments aren't trying to be poor under the status quo, and poor countries are already doing what they can. If a government is bad, I'd much rather replace that government than try to evacuate everyone and send them away.

With that, I rest my case, wish pro the best of luck with all her debates in future, and declare the resolution negated.
Debate Round No. 3
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by ArgentStorm 5 years ago
*Jennifer, nice catch. Wrote it on my phone at work, so I probably wasn"t paying as much attention as I should have. Sorry for the confusion.
Posted by calculatedr1sk 5 years ago
Who is Jessica?
Posted by ArgentStorm 5 years ago
As a fellow Canadian, I'm curious whether you view the recent Idle No More movement favourably or unfavourably. Given your stance on the Occupy movement I suspect the former, however as you are an Albertan, one can never really be sure ;-).
Posted by calculatedr1sk 5 years ago

Firstly, I want to congratulate both participants for representing their positions well. I went back and forth several times, and ended up having to read this debate twice to be sure of who won.

Pro had the clear upper hand on remittances and aging populations. There are so many positives to immigration, and they line up in favor of Pro. Con's rebuttal that remittances are a form of exploitation by rich countries upon poor countries didn't make a lot of sense to me. It seems Con also may misunderstand the problems associated with aging populations, which immigration does indeed help very much to alleviate.

Despite this, Con is right that he is not arguing that immigration shouldn't happen at all, just that it should be done in balance, with measured constraints. Otherwise, nations like Israel could be overwhelmed by hostile Arabs who retake what they consider to be their land by sheer numbers. And why would Israel, or any other country, agree to this kind of policy in the first place? It may lead to a more socially optimal outcome for millions of people, but it requires powerful players (like Israel) to act against their own self interest, rendering it nonsensical. I recommend Pro read up on some game theory concepts, particularly Nash equilibrium, to understand why the kind of utopian fantasy she recommends in this debate doesn't make much sense in the real world.

Also, Con wins out on the line of argument that relocating does not solve the problem of impoverishment, it just changes where the poor person is located.

My last comment is that although I consider Pro's mindset to be quite naive, I admire it. The beautiful world of freedom and prosperity for everyone sometimes seems like an incredibly remote possibility. Without people like her who believe, however, even that slim hope would be gone.
Posted by larztheloser 5 years ago
That moment when immediately after posting you realise that you've just set London in America ... gah! Why do I even do this at 3:45am!?
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by calculatedr1sk 5 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments.
Vote Placed by Juris_Naturalis 5 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: I personally agree with con, but your arguments were near equal so I can't assign a better argument vote. However, Pro did misspell a few words, so that's that.