September 26, 2013

NYT: Immigrants are "flocking to Mexico" with its "rapidly growing" economy

NYT caption: "At the U.S.-Mexico border,
which nation is a “land of opportunity?"
From the NYT:
Ambitious immigrants from around the world are flocking to Mexico, where a rapidly growing economy is seen as creating opportunities for those who work hard to do well. People used to say that about the United States. 
Can a developed economy like the U.S. provide similar opportunities for people to move up the economic ladder, or is rapid growth essential to upward mobility?

This a meme that the prestige press has been promoting to bolster Schumer-Rubio propaganda: Handing out the Path to Citizenship now won't lure in future Undocumented Workers, because America doesn't have to worry about illegal immigration ever again! Alternative interpretations would include: "Wow, look at that picture: What a crap border fence compared to the fences that a serious country like Israel has. There's no barb wire and then it just ends ..." Or, "So, everything's peachy in Mexico, so illegal aliens are unlikely to starve if they have to go home." 

But those interpretations won't come up because all that counts is winning and the easiest way to win is to hold the Megaphone.

But, in reality, is Mexico's economy "rapidly growing" and are immigrants "flocking to Mexico"?

From International Business Times:
Mexico Cuts 2013 GDP Growth Forecast To 1.8% After Disappointing Q2By Patricia Rey Mallén
on August 21 2013 4:09 PM

The Mexican government's original GDP growth forecast for 2013 might have been a little too enthusiastic. The 3.1 percent increase forecast for this year fell to 1.8 percent recently after the Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía (National Institute of Statistics and Geography, or Inegi) calculated that the economy's growth for the second quarter was just 1 percent.

The plummeting GDP forecast doesn't come as a total surprise, however. In May, the Minister of Finance reduced the forecast from 3.5 percent to 3.1 percent after first-quarter GDP growth slowed to 0.8 percent. Banco de México also lowered its forecast, originally 3 percent to 4 percent, to 2 percent to 3 percent growth. ... 
The news corresponds with a report by Moody’s that points to Mexico's growth as its "unfinished homework." Mauro Leos, Moody’s Mexico director, said that from 2003 to 2012, the average annual growth rate for Mexico, the second-largest economy in Latin America after Brazil, was 2.5 percent, much lower than the average Latin American growth rate during the same period. 
Nevertheless, in the last three years, the rate of growth had climbed up to 4.4 percent. Despite that, “things always go back to normal,” he said.

Ways to measure GDP per capita are complicated, so I won't proclaim this graph provided by Google from World Bank data as the ultimate way to measure changes in GDP per capita, but it's worth looking at, if only to say: Wow, look at Canada!
GDP per capita (from Google)
The NYT Editors believe their own hype from this article:
For Migrants, New Land of Opportunity Is Mexico

By DAMIEN CAVE 
Published: September 21, 2013  
MEXICO CITY — Mexico, whose economic woes have pushed millions of people north, is increasingly becoming an immigrant destination. The country’s documented foreign-born population nearly doubled between 2000 and 2010, and officials now say the pace is accelerating as broad changes in the global economy create new dynamics of migration.

The accompany graphs, however, show just how few immigrants there are in Mexico (or at least have been counted).

There are a total of 961,121 foreign-born people living in Mexico. Wow, that's almost a million! But, here's a question: What's the total population of Mexico? The latest estimate is 116,000,000. So that's under 1.0%.

In contrast, the foreign born population of the United States is over 40,000,000, versus about 270,000,000 natives, or about 15% of the native population.

And Mexico gives out a grand total of 301,795 work visas, out of a working age population approaching 70 million.

In the long run, Mexico should have more foreigners, especially American retirees, residing there. It attracted lots of immigrants in the past, such as the ancestors of Carlos Slim, Vicente Fox, Salma Hayek, Frida Kahlo, Anthony Quinn, and so forth. Former foreign secretary Jorge Castaneda (whose mother is from the Soviet Union and his eminence grise brother was born there) outlined in 2011 a number of reforms to make Mexico better both for American retirees and for Mexicans, such as more traffic lights. Most importantly, he felt, was for Mexicans to stop referring to Americans using ethnic slurs.

The latest government of Mexico has suggested a number of hopeful-sounding reforms devoted to cracking down on monopoly power in Mexico (Carlos Slim, Pemex, and the teachers' union that has turned many teaching jobs into hereditary sinecures). These are problems not impossible to overcome, and I wish Mexicans well in fixing their country.

36 comments:

Anonymous said...

Who? Whom?

Answer: Carlos Slim is a NYT owner. It's in his best interest to promote this view.

Question: In this day and age of the internet which makes it substantially easier to fact check these kinds of various carnards found in the NYT opinion piece...how stupid do the NYT columnists think their audience is?

Very condescending, patronizing, and frankly disrespectful.

Anonymous said...

Carlos Slim's investment certainly is paying off.

Whiskey said...

Steve not even Israel can keep illegal immigrants out. Their Supreme court ruled that they can neither be deported nor imprisoned and must be set free. To move about the country. When not even Israel can keep them out there is a serious problem with Western elites.

Anonymous said...

"Most importantly, he felt, was for Mexicans to stop referring to Americans using ethnic slurs."

This will never happen. They use slurs (even among each other) as a term of endearment.

My Mexican friends never laugh so much as when I call them cholos.

Anonymous said...

A country can be poorer than the US and still be a magnet of opportunity.

Take China for instance lots of Americans/British who couldn't find any jobs teaching English. China's GDP per capita is 1/8 of the US. Something like $6000 versus $48,000.

I also met a Mexican girl with barely an accent teaching English in China.

Kibernetika said...

@Whiskey: It's true that Israel cannot keep all illegals out, but they do at least try. That nation's always been -- or has historically been -- under existential pressure and it cannot afford to let down its guard. Americans have no such sense of urgency yet, are more identity-fragmented than a bad Windoze hard drive.

When I was a kid on Long Island, it seemed that all of my Jewish friends had the obligatory Coca Cola can with Hebrew script, a few empty .50 caliber casings. Stuff from the recent successful wars. No matter the political leanings of those families, they were united in the sense that they universally agreed that Israel must survive.

We modern Americans no longer have that. And when Americans lose their national cohesion -- a thing in progress -- support of Israel will suffer.

2Degrees said...

There are lots of immigrants in Costa Rica, mainly from Nicaragua, and their presence is widely resented in the Central Valley. Nicas are the butt of many cruel jokes.

On the coast, the locals are more interested in abusing people from the capital, whom they call comehuevos and accuse of being litter-bugs and bad tippers.

Mr. Anon said...

Mexico certainly offers opportunities to an enterprising headsman.

24AheadDotCom said...

To do something about the talking points mentioned in the post, intellectually challenge or work to discredit NYT authors. For instance, I chatted with Damien Cave once on Twitter, and I've tried to chat with even worse NYT hacks.

When a reporter does something that isn't journalism, I look up the people in their circle and point it out. "X didn't mention Y, does that sound like journalism to you?" They pretend to be journalists; point out to their friends how they're just hacks.

In important cases I'll try to get @jayrosen_nyu to join in (as he did with a post of mine about reporters shielding Durbin). I'm also trying in vain to get a response from @LATreadersrep on two of their stories.

In the case of the first NYT link (a link that helps the NYT), there's no author specified. But, nearly every day you'll find an NYT article with a byline and where the author is open to being discredited.

jody said...

canada's economy seemed to track the price of oil pretty well. that's their main economic engine.

if mexico does not work out their oil issue, they can count on 1% growth for the foreseeable future.

how many of the immigrants in mexico are actually illegal aliens from central america. or are they not even counted in those figures.

Anonymous said...

"We modern Americans no longer have that. And when Americans lose their national cohesion -- a thing in progress -- support of Israel will suffer."

I must strongly disagree. If anything, as the ruling elite become more detached from the proletariat so too will their actions and decision no longer reflect the will of the majority.

Look at Syria. The American people were consistently and overwhelmingly opposed to doing ANYTHING in Syria, yet the constant drumbeat continued and only got sort of derailed thanks to John Kerry's incompetence. Even still, there's no guarantee war won't eventually be forced n us just like before with Libya.

Allophone said...

"Carlos Slim is a NYT owner. It's in his best interest to promote this view."

I'm actually kinda surprised the NYT would publish this article. (Or I haven't mastered the brand of cognitive dissonance that the NYT demands of its readers.)

For decades we've heard illegals & their kids whining: sending them back to their countries of origin would be a crime against humanity, condemning them to grinding poverty, starvation, abuse, utter waste of their U.S. taxpayer-funded educations, etc. But actually, now the NYT is telling us that things in Mexico aren't especially bad: the country is more prosperous than the world average, and there's a big demand for educated & skilled workers because of the shortage of same among the local populace.

So hey, maybe we could do Mexicans in the US a favor and send them back to get in on the ground floor of their homeland's new economic miracle? It's just like piano lessons: they might not like it now but they'll be grateful later!

Anonymous said...

Mexico is a New World nation and should have a lot more immigrants. After all, the New World is supposed to be comprised of nations of immigrants. Or does that only apply to the English speaking ones?

According to the powers that be the reason the USA and Canada are successful is due to immigration. So why don't they push Mexico and other third world nations to accept comparable levels of immigration? Or does that just apply to "white" countries?

Anonymous said...

As an Asian, I was not really surprised to see that Korean immigrants got shouted at and told to 'go home' in xemophobic rants while White European immigrants were treated better than the locals and given special treatment because they/you have fair skin and blue eyes.

Mexico is still ruled by white Europeans - and rather their descendants - and so is places like Brazil. Less so in politics but if you look at business it's overwhelmingly so. Exceptions for people like Carlos Slim, but even he is a Lebanese Christian, a country just a few hundred miles from the coast of Europe, sharing the same religion as most Europeans. If he had been a muslim from Saudi Arabia, would he have been just as successful? Of course not, he must adapt to the ruling class.

As for Mexico itself, and Brazil, the whole 'BRICS' story is an illusion. They have 1/4th of the GDP/capita of Western countries but grow as slow/fast as them.

The only two countries that will grow fast is India and China and especially China as India is twice as poor as China and growth there is slowing faster than China.

It seems like the only countries that will ever truly become rich is white-majority countries and East Asian countries.

Everyone else stagnates in comparison even though absolute poverty and other measurements do get a lot better. I guess they get helped up by the general wealth of the world, but in relative terms falls behind.

Also, remember that 30-40% of the entire Mexican budget is financed by oil revenues. If oil exports were to start falling just 3-4% per year the Mexican economy would face a continuous recession.

Anonymous said...

"Carlos Slim is a NYT owner. It's in his best interest to promote this view."

Why? Why would he want migrants to back to Mexico? Most of them would be Mexicans and he makes more money off Mexican expats calling into the U.S., charging massive prices.

".how stupid do the NYT columnists think their audience is?

Very condescending, patronizing, and frankly disrespectful."

You're making a mistake here. You seem to assume the NYT people know better. Who says that? They believe most of the lies they are peddling, and they are not that much smarter than seeing through this.

As for the NYT readers, most of them blame conservatives for everything but live like most conservatives, including on racial matters. They support de Blasio now because crime keeps falling but if it explodes, they'll be clamoring for the return of Bloomberg.

They're pretty stupid and can't see in front of their own noses. Of course, then there are readers of the NYT who are independents like me who read it because they have excellent news coverage of the Middle East, for example, and good general science coverage in general and fairly good economics coverage. But even those readers, like us, roll our eyes when we read such articles precisely because we know the editors believe their own lies, just like most other NYT readers who read such an article and think of it as gospel.

Anonymous said...

Roughly speaking, Bangladesh stands to Mexico as Mexico stands to the USA in economic terms.
Therefore to the deadheads of the NYT massive Bangladeshi immigration into Mexico will be *the* boon sine no qua to the Mexican economy, the sprinkling of magic fairy dust that will ensure all the goodies in life and then some to Mexicans - who are just too damn ignorant to realize the brilliance of modern economic thinking.
So why aren't the Mexicans opening the doors to Bangladeshis?

Anonymous said...

o/t, but I hadn't realised that Bangladesh is fenced off on both sides - the Burmese have a fence too.

a/c/t this report Indian border forces killed 48 Bangladeshis in 2012. Odd that this doesn't seem to make the NYT or Guardian.

http://www.economist.com/blogs/banyan/2013/01/bangladesh-and-its-near-abroad

http://zeenews.india.com/news/nation/bangladeshi-electrocuted-while-damaging-border-fence-lighting_871653.html

http://www.thestar.com/news/world/2013/04/01/hundreds_of_bangladeshis_getting_killed_at_border_with_india.html

Anonymous said...

Mexico is a New World nation and should have a lot more immigrants. After all, the New World is supposed to be comprised of nations of immigrants. Or does that only apply to the English speaking ones?

The Spanish and English models of New World conquest were starkly different in their application and results. Spaniards: convert and enslave the natives. Anglos: exterminate them.

Anonymous said...

Canada's high GDP per capita isn't as impressive as the U.S. because it has a higher IQ population than America. 80% white, with much of the rest coming from East Asia, high caste Indian or 'Canadian green card' program immigrants. America is..65-70% white if you figure that a lot of 'Hispanics' are more or less genotypically European. The ~30% minority population however is markedly dumber than Canada's. Some East Asians, but far more mestizos and blacks. Yet America still nearly matches Canada in GDP per head. Americans really are throwing away an amazing economic inheritance.

Anonymous said...

Anyone ever read "Tschiffeley's Ride", the story of a man who in the 30s rode horseback from Buenos Aires to NY? Fascinating insights into the various societies en route. Massive gulf between conquistador-Latinos and Indian Latinos.

Roland said...

As a commenter pointed out below the NYT story, that figure of 1 million foreign-born in Mexico is misleading, since many of them are the U.S.-born children of Mexicans who have returned to Mexico.

Matthew said...

"Steve not even Israel can keep illegal immigrants out. Their Supreme court ruled that they can neither be deported nor imprisoned and must be set free."

You're describing only the most recent move in a chess game that is still playing. Israel will keep the illegals out. The United States won't. If they have to, the Israeli government will simply ignore the Court. Their win, our loss.

Anonymous said...

o/t, but I hadn't realised that Bangladesh is fenced off on both sides - the Burmese have a fence too.

a/c/t this report Indian border forces killed 48 Bangladeshis in 2012. Odd that this doesn't seem to make the NYT or Guardian.


Don't give them any ideas. Next they'll be saying that countries with fences end up like Burma, Bangladesh or India.

Anonymous said...

I want to move to Mexico and buy land. The laws will not allow me because I am an American citizen. That is discrimination! This is one side of the immigration issue they never talk about.

el surpemo said...

Over the long term (50 years or more) maybe this would actually be true.

If the US becomes an overcrowded, low wage, dumping ground for the flotsam and jetsam from cultures far more messed up than Mexico, and weighed down by increasingly sclerotic finances and institutions, then the better Latin American countries would actually be comparatively promising places to live.

Chile, Argentina, Colombia, and Mexico to a lesser degree have so far avoided the bloat of late 20th century managerial progressivism (though they have their own political issues), their native populations are stable, and all of them have consistently produced a decent smart fraction of intellectuals and businessmen. I'd rather live in Bogota or Puebla than Newark.

Anonymous said...

Hamburgers are a multi-billion dollar business, and while fast food chains have got the process down to an efficient production line process, making them is still labor intensive with armies of burger flippers and sandwich assemblers. In a move that could put millions of teenagers around the world out of their first job, Momentum Machines is creating a hamburger-making machine that churns out made-to-order burgers at industrial speeds and aims to use it in its own chain of restaurants.

Anonymous said...

According to Momentum Machines, making burgers costs US$9 billion a year in wages in the United States alone. The company points out that a machine that could make burgers with minimum human intervention would not only provide huge savings in labor costs, but would also reduce preparation space with a burger kitchen replaced by a much smaller and cheaper stainless-steel box.

Ali said...

Canada has a much smaller population sitting on a resource treasure-trove. That has a relatively bigger impact on GDP per capita than the respective IQs.

David said...

>If the US becomes an overcrowded, low wage, dumping ground for the flotsam and jetsam from cultures far more messed up than Mexico, and weighed down by increasingly sclerotic finances and institutions, then the better Latin American countries would actually be comparatively promising places to live.<

If?

Also consider Singapore if you've got the dough.

panjoomby said...

the way to get a country's productivity up is to increase the white & asian gene pool - the way to lower productivity is to decrease that gene pool or its proportion.

Anonymous said...

Never was:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/nathanielparishflannery/2013/08/27/mexico-is-the-aztec-tiger-starting-to-whimper/

Just got worse:

http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2013/09/25/storms-rain-on-mexicos-budding-second-half-recovery/

The peso is back above 13.00.

Anonymous said...

Well, Mexico isn't perfect but as Brenda Walker stated it isn't that they don't have any jobs, as far as unemployment these days I think its easier to get a job there unless you live in a real rural area. The wages are lower is the main reason why they come up here.

Anonymous said...

About his personal plans, Jorge says he’s “committed to doing this for another two years before moving on.” Also a venture partner at Quorumm Mexico, he’s certain that once it will be able to create 250 good startups a year, the Mexican tech scene will thrive and make the best out of its geographic closeness to both Silicon Valley and NYC. Following interesting initiatives such as Wayra, TelMexHub Tour, Startups Weekends in several cities and Mexico’s Campus Party, Jorge is convinced that Aventura will make a meaningful contribution to creating a vibrant startup ecosystem in the country.

What do you think is the best way to develop a startup ecosystem?

Vdare basically deals with the negative side of Mexico because the immirgants are from the poor areas and tends to sometimes paint the whole country like that. Its similar to the Democrats picturing Texas as the Rio Grande or Republicans California as Los Angeles and Santa Ana. That's why I think its possible for Mexico or one of the other Latin Countries to do a little better but doesn't mean we have to let everyone in or encouraged them to stay here long term

Anonymous said...

I mean just because it gets better and approaches a South Korean standard living doesn't mean we have to be off guard or legalized millions. Some need to go back anyway but you need to get rid of the job magnet here.

Anonymous said...

Canada's high GDP per capita isn't as impressive as the U.S. because it has a higher IQ population than America. 80% white, with much of the rest coming from East Asia, high caste Indian or 'Canadian green card' program immigrants. America is..65-70% white if you figure that a lot of 'Hispanics' are more or less genotypically European. The ~30% minority population however is markedly dumber than Canada's. Some East Asians, but far more mestizos and blacks. Yet America still nearly matches Canada in GDP per head. Americans really are throwing away an amazing economic inheritance.

You should look at median and per capita household wealth and income figures, which are not quite so rosy. The Canucks might pip the US on median income, but that depends on measures.

The median wealth minus Blacks and Hispanics is probably quite unspectacular, particularly net of the low tax and low service redistribution in the US (lots of spending on that health insurance, and what tax that's taken is taken from the poor and goes to guns and butter).

The Land of the Dollar is a great machine for making rich men rich though (its a wonderful country to be a Jew, for instance), and the rest of its population live about as well as the coracials in other countries.

Anonymous said...

The Land of the Dollar is a great machine for making rich men rich though (its a wonderful country to be a Jew, for instance)

Not all American Jews are rich or even upper middle class. One of my grandfathers worked as a salesman in a shoe store. With one exception, his siblings owned small "prolish" (in Half Sigma terminology) businesses, and only one of them was able to become a millionaire nextdoor. Some of their kids did better, but I don't think any of them have moved any higher than upper middlc class. They are now near the end of their careers, so it probably won't happen. My generation is taking it on the chin. Only two of us are likely to make it into the upper middle class, and even we will be much poorer than our respective parents.