Posted on March 12, 2024

Nobel Economist Reverses His Support for Migration

Neil Munro, Breitbart, March 11, 2024

Migration and free trade impose huge unrecognized costs on ordinary people, says a Nobel-awarded Princeton economist who previously supported the unpopular, elite-backed policies.

“I used to subscribe to the near consensus among economists that immigration to the US was a good thing,” Professor Angus Deaton wrote in a post for the International Monetary Fund. He continued:

Longer-term analysis over the past century and a half tells a different story. Inequality was high when America was open [to migration], was much lower when the borders were closed [to migrants], and rose again post Hart-Celler (the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965) as the fraction of foreign-born people rose back to its levels in the Gilded Age.

On free trade, he wrote:

I also no longer defend the idea that the harm done to working Americans by globalization was a reasonable price to pay for global poverty reduction because workers in America are so much better off than the global poor …

I had also seriously underthought my ethical judgments about trade-offs between domestic and foreign workers. We certainly have a duty to aid those in distress, but we have additional obligations to our fellow citizens that we do not have to others.

Deaton is an English-born, 78-year-old retired academic economist. One of his major accomplishments was naming the unrecognized rise in early deaths among discarded Americans as “Deaths of Despair.” {snip}