Friends or Strangers: The Impact of Immigrants on the U.S. Economy

George J. Borjas, Author Basic Books $22.95 (274p) ISBN 978-0-465-02567-1
The debate over U.S. immigration policy is long on passion and woefully limited on facts. This excellent study by economist Borjas provides a firm factual foundation to guide future decisions. Contrary to the conventional wisdom, he maintains that immigrants do not lower the wages or employment opportunities of natives; however, the mix of recent immigrants has changed. New arrivals are less skilled than those who came 30 years ago, and therefore do not perform as well as earlier immigrants. Borjas notes that immigration restrictions are inherently discriminatory--rules necessarily exclude someone. He suggests that the U.S. would benefit significantly by shifting its policies toward admitting immigrants on the basis of their skill levels, by means of a point system ranking skills; or perhaps even selling visas to immigrants. This book is crucial reading for those interested in immigration policy. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 01/30/1990
Release date: 02/01/1990
Paperback - 288 pages - 978-0-465-02568-8
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