Open Borders and Affluent Americans, by Robert Weissberg

Immigrants are the “best help.” From Robert Weissberg at

Who benefits from the massive surge of migrants crossing our southern boarder? Obviously, more is involved than just compassion for millions of poor Guatemalans and their children. And while adding future Democratic voters is clearly the long-term aim of those tolerating the invasion, there is one group of immediate beneficiaries whose needs have garnered scant attention: affluent Americans whose comfort depends on armies low-wage, happy-to-please foreign-born workers. The awkward truth is that millions of upscale Americans risk transforming the US into a banana republic in pursuit of creature comforts. Like those wretched masses wading across the Rio Grande, they, too, want a better life.

Beyond a certain income level, the appetite for material objects declines. Even the mega-rich can consume only so many giant TV’s, fancy cars, and other pricy goodies. With physical needs largely satisfied, services become central—waiters and cooks in upscale restaurants, dutiful nannies and maids, gardeners and countless others whose jobs are essential to “the good life.” Automation can get you just so far in enjoying one’s wealth. After you pay $1000 for a top-of the line German dishwasher, somebody else has to load and unload it.

Life in New York City illustrates this good life/open borders nexus. Spanish, as spoken by those appearing to be Mestizo ancestry, is the lingua franca in restaurants, hotels, parking garages and small grocery stores and delicatessens. For the last 17 years I’ve lived in full-service apartment buildings in the city, and the staff are disproportionately from overseas. In elevators I encounter short distinctly Hispanic women carrying laundry to basement washing machines or pushing strollers with little blond children. Immigrant similarly dominate taxies and Uber—drivers are disproportionately Asians, Bangladeshi, and Indians. During bad weather, even blizzards, armies of Hispanic men on bicycles deliver take-out to the home-bound rich.

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