T Nation

Brain Drain?

This board has mostly been about Obama-the-Marxist-antichrist-monkey, global warming as a conspiracy theory, religious supremacy (i.e: my religion is better than yours), and new-age public display of affection towards kids. I’d really want to read some reactions to this “hot” paper.

“Our new paper, “America’s Loss Is the World’s Gain,” finds that the vast majority of these returnees were relatively young. The average age was 30 for Indian returnees, and 33 for Chinese. They were highly educated, with degrees in management, technology, or science. Fifty-one percent of the Chinese held master’s degrees and 41% had PhDs. Sixty-six percent of the Indians held a master’s and 12.1% had PhDs. They were at very top of the educational distribution for these highly educated immigrant groups ? precisely the kind of people who make the greatest contribution to the US economy and to business and job growth.”

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/Delivery.cfm/SSRN_ID1351507_code199490.pdf?abstractid=1348616&mirid=1

In my opinion, what made America so great are the immigrants and all their contributions (particularly Brits and Germans). Now, in the name of some dubious “patriotism”, we’re hearing about how Obama is not American-born (and should, therefore be sacked!), about immigration laws needing to be tightened because of “national security”, about rounding up illegals, etc. Meanwhile, free circulation Europe is ever expanding and milking every aspect of it.

Is it pragmatic to require highly productive people to go through hoops for visas (particularly post-9/11), while the baby born in the US doesn’t need to? In global times where jobs are being shipped overseas, do such barriers on humans make sense? Or is it that I am idealizing the old days?

The smartest and most determined to advance in life went to America because there they could do it.

Now that that seems no longer to be true, they will go somewhere else.

Even if you want semi-socialism you can have that in Europe, just with less paranoia and more tax havens.

[quote]lixy wrote:
This board has mostly been about Obama-the-Marxist-antichrist-monkey, global warming as a conspiracy theory, religious supremacy (i.e: my religion is better than yours), and new-age public display of affection towards kids. I’d really want to read some reactions to this “hot” paper.

“Our new paper, “America’s Loss Is the World’s Gain,” finds that the vast majority of these returnees were relatively young. The average age was 30 for Indian returnees, and 33 for Chinese. They were highly educated, with degrees in management, technology, or science. Fifty-one percent of the Chinese held master’s degrees and 41% had PhDs. Sixty-six percent of the Indians held a master’s and 12.1% had PhDs. They were at very top of the educational distribution for these highly educated immigrant groups ? precisely the kind of people who make the greatest contribution to the US economy and to business and job growth.”

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/Delivery.cfm/SSRN_ID1351507_code199490.pdf?abstractid=1348616&mirid=1

In my opinion, what made America so great are the immigrants and all their contributions (particularly Brits and Germans). Now, in the name of some dubious “patriotism”, we’re hearing about how Obama is not American-born (and should, therefore be sacked!), about immigration laws needing to be tightened because of “national security”, about rounding up illegals, etc. Meanwhile, free circulation Europe is ever expanding and milking every aspect of it.

Is it pragmatic to require highly productive people to go through hoops for visas (particularly post-9/11), while the baby born in the US doesn’t need to? In global times where jobs are being shipped overseas, do such barriers on humans make sense? Or is it that I am idealizing the old days? [/quote]

I agree that America is become less of a desireable place for immigrants, but it is a result of the anti-business and anti-growth policies of the the Democrats in Congress and now Obama.

Please note that Obama being ‘sacked’ is due to our Constitution requiring that only persons born on American soil can be POTUS. It is not a decision as simply as sacking the man.

[quote]lixy wrote:
This board has mostly been about Obama-the-Marxist-antichrist-monkey, global warming as a conspiracy theory, religious supremacy (i.e: my religion is better than yours), and new-age public display of affection towards kids. I’d really want to read some reactions to this “hot” paper.

“Our new paper, “America’s Loss Is the World’s Gain,” finds that the vast majority of these returnees were relatively young. The average age was 30 for Indian returnees, and 33 for Chinese. They were highly educated, with degrees in management, technology, or science. Fifty-one percent of the Chinese held master’s degrees and 41% had PhDs. Sixty-six percent of the Indians held a master’s and 12.1% had PhDs. They were at very top of the educational distribution for these highly educated immigrant groups ? precisely the kind of people who make the greatest contribution to the US economy and to business and job growth.”

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/Delivery.cfm/SSRN_ID1351507_code199490.pdf?abstractid=1348616&mirid=1

In my opinion, what made America so great are the immigrants and all their contributions (particularly Brits and Germans). Now, in the name of some dubious “patriotism”, we’re hearing about how Obama is not American-born (and should, therefore be sacked!), about immigration laws needing to be tightened because of “national security”, about rounding up illegals, etc. Meanwhile, free circulation Europe is ever expanding and milking every aspect of it.

Is it pragmatic to require highly productive people to go through hoops for visas (particularly post-9/11), while the baby born in the US doesn’t need to? In global times where jobs are being shipped overseas, do such barriers on humans make sense? Or is it that I am idealizing the old days? [/quote]

We find that, though restrictive immigration policies caused some returnees to depart the United States, [b]the most significant factors in the decision to return home were career opportunities, family ties, and quality of life.[/b]

[quote]Headhunter wrote:
lixy wrote:
“Our new paper, “America’s Loss Is the World’s Gain,” finds that the vast majority of these returnees were relatively young. The average age was 30 for Indian returnees, and 33 for Chinese. They were highly educated, with degrees in management, technology, or science. Fifty-one percent of the Chinese held master’s degrees and 41% had PhDs. Sixty-six percent of the Indians held a master’s and 12.1% had PhDs. They were at very top of the educational distribution for these highly educated immigrant groups ? precisely the kind of people who make the greatest contribution to the US economy and to business and job growth.”

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/Delivery.cfm/SSRN_ID1351507_code199490.pdf?abstractid=1348616&mirid=1

In my opinion, what made America so great are the immigrants and all their contributions (particularly Brits and Germans). Now, in the name of some dubious “patriotism”, we’re hearing about how Obama is not American-born (and should, therefore be sacked!), about immigration laws needing to be tightened because of “national security”, about rounding up illegals, etc. Meanwhile, free circulation Europe is ever expanding and milking every aspect of it.

Is it pragmatic to require highly productive people to go through hoops for visas (particularly post-9/11), while the baby born in the US doesn’t need to? In global times where jobs are being shipped overseas, do such barriers on humans make sense? Or is it that I am idealizing the old days?

I agree that America is become less of a desireable place for immigrants, but it is a result of the anti-business and anti-growth policies of the the Democrats in Congress and now Obama.
[/quote]

Quite true. Protectionism, one of the highest corp. tax rates, and gov’t mandated cost of living hikes makes this country less competitive. I don’t think there is any surprise here, nor do I think you will get much argument.

On immigration, we really have no choice but to be selective. You cannot have open boarders and a welfare state. This is a surefire way to bankrupt a country. Open borders would be a much better choice. We have chosen the welfare state.

We I say open boarders, I mean legal entry into the country.
I don’t think many would argue that the process for legal entry by seemingly productive immigrants should be simplified. It’s the border jumpers we should be concerned with.

The other trend I find disturbing is non-americans coming here to be educated in tax payer subsidized universities. Knowing that the tuition costs payed by students are subsidized by tax payers, shouldn’t visitors to this country be paying a higher cost?

There was a very large population of Asian students at the school I went to that had no intention of staying here after graduation. I got to know quite a few in the various areas of study I was in over my college career. I seemed to be a minority while majoring in Applied Math, Computer Science, and Telecommunications Engineering. I switched my major a few times.

Again, another instance of open boarders and a welfare state.

I also don’t find it concerning that the rest of the world is more competitive with the US. Why would we be concerned with the other countries improving. Sounds like something that would be possitive for the world economy.

The only thing concerning me is making policy that puts us at a disadvantage. Immigration law (not enforcement) is probably the least of our worries when it comes to this.

[quote]Sloth wrote:
lixy wrote:
This board has mostly been about Obama-the-Marxist-antichrist-monkey, global warming as a conspiracy theory, religious supremacy (i.e: my religion is better than yours), and new-age public display of affection towards kids. I’d really want to read some reactions to this “hot” paper.

“Our new paper, “America’s Loss Is the World’s Gain,” finds that the vast majority of these returnees were relatively young. The average age was 30 for Indian returnees, and 33 for Chinese. They were highly educated, with degrees in management, technology, or science. Fifty-one percent of the Chinese held master’s degrees and 41% had PhDs. Sixty-six percent of the Indians held a master’s and 12.1% had PhDs. They were at very top of the educational distribution for these highly educated immigrant groups ? precisely the kind of people who make the greatest contribution to the US economy and to business and job growth.”

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/Delivery.cfm/SSRN_ID1351507_code199490.pdf?abstractid=1348616&mirid=1

In my opinion, what made America so great are the immigrants and all their contributions (particularly Brits and Germans). Now, in the name of some dubious “patriotism”, we’re hearing about how Obama is not American-born (and should, therefore be sacked!), about immigration laws needing to be tightened because of “national security”, about rounding up illegals, etc. Meanwhile, free circulation Europe is ever expanding and milking every aspect of it.

Is it pragmatic to require highly productive people to go through hoops for visas (particularly post-9/11), while the baby born in the US doesn’t need to? In global times where jobs are being shipped overseas, do such barriers on humans make sense? Or is it that I am idealizing the old days?

We find that, though restrictive immigration policies caused some returnees to depart the United States, [b]the most significant factors in the decision to return home were career opportunities, family ties, and quality of life.[/b] [/quote]

So you are saying it does not matter if the US becomes more restrictive, because it becomes less attractive anyway?

Are you sure that you understand how that global competition thing works?

[quote]orion wrote:

So you are saying it does not matter if the US becomes more restrictive, because it becomes less attractive anyway?

Are you sure that you understand how that global competition thing works?[/quote]

I’m saying that returnees going home due to immigration policies warranted a mere “some.” While other factors warranted a “most significant” by the authors.

[quote]Sloth wrote:
orion wrote:

So you are saying it does not matter if the US becomes more restrictive, because it becomes less attractive anyway?

Are you sure that you understand how that global competition thing works?

I’m saying that returnees going home due to immigration policies warranted a mere “some.” While other factors warranted a “most significant” by the authors.
[/quote]

Is it ok if I count that as a “no” then?

[quote]orion wrote:
Sloth wrote:
orion wrote:

So you are saying it does not matter if the US becomes more restrictive, because it becomes less attractive anyway?

Are you sure that you understand how that global competition thing works?

I’m saying that returnees going home due to immigration policies warranted a mere “some.” While other factors warranted a “most significant” by the authors.

Is it ok if I count that as a “no” then?[/quote]

Where are you going with this? The paper isn’t even pointing to immigration policy as a significant factor, and you want…well, what?

You’d think I didn’t quote the paper itself, or something.

[quote]Sloth wrote:
We find that, though restrictive immigration policies caused some returnees to depart the United States, [b]the most significant factors in the decision to return home were career opportunities, family ties, and quality of life.[/b] [/quote]

Good point, Sloth. Thank you.

But at some point, “career opportunities” and immigration policies are blurred. I’m thinking about loads of people with extremely restrictive visas which virtually means they put up with crappy conditions (relative to natural-born or naturalized Americans), or go home. I personally have decided not to set foot in the US since 9/11 because the government seems to treat foreigners as criminals by default. Some desperate types put up with that, but highly qualified people would obviously not.

P.S: HH, don’t you think it’s time to amend the constitution? The leading presidential candidates were both accused of not being “natural-born”. Doesn’t the concept strike you as pointless?

[quote]Sloth wrote:
orion wrote:
Sloth wrote:
orion wrote:

So you are saying it does not matter if the US becomes more restrictive, because it becomes less attractive anyway?

Are you sure that you understand how that global competition thing works?

I’m saying that returnees going home due to immigration policies warranted a mere “some.” While other factors warranted a “most significant” by the authors.

Is it ok if I count that as a “no” then?

Where are you going with this? The paper isn’t even pointing to immigration policy as a significant factor, and you want…well, what? [/quote]

I am wondering how you separate immigration policies from family ties, job restrictions and general quality of life.

Not to mention that someone like Lixy only has to have a family name that does not translate well into English, plus a few critical posts on an American website, to simply disappear and be tortured.

If you do not want them, they won´t come.

If that is a matter of official policy or just a general sentiment that is reflected in populist policy measures hardly matters.

[quote]dhickey wrote:
On immigration, we really have no choice but to be selective. You cannot have open boarders and a welfare state. This is a surefire way to bankrupt a country. Open borders would be a much better choice. We have chosen the welfare state. [/quote]

Well, European countries have a much better “welfare state” than you guys. Yet, they opened borders like there’s no tomorrow. They probably figured that keeping borders closed was more of a “surefire way to bankrupt a country”.

[quote]We I say open boarders, I mean legal entry into the country.
I don’t think many would argue that the process for legal entry by seemingly productive immigrants should be simplified. [/quote]

As I understand it, curbs on immigration were a result of white protestants of Anglo-saxon heritage feeling threatened by the numbers of Catholics and Asians coming to the country. “Productive” wasn’t the issue. Even nowadays, plenty of organizations are arguing that foreigners are “stealing” their jobs. If the process isn’t simplified, it’s because some forces are opposing that.

There was a 20% increase of people advocating immigration restrictions right after 9/11 (Gallup). With that in mind, the hoops foreigners must jump through seem to be validated by the population and a result of excessive paranoia about national security. But I might be wrong.

Evidently, Canada is more of a welfare state than the US is. Why not open the borders? It’s not like Ottawa can say no. No borders, no “borders jumpers”.

Worse, many of those “non-americans” have scolarships, grants and such which are mostly taxpayer money. When they graduate and go back home, it’s an obvious net-loss for you. You should be doing all you can to keep them there, instead of making the naturalization process hell.

I don’t blame them. They get discriminated against just because they’re not citizens.

Meanwhile, “Americans” are increasingly avoiding science and engineering.

One doesn’t necessarily imply the other.

You think human resources are “the least of [y]our worries”? Think again.

[quote]orion wrote:
Sloth wrote:
orion wrote:
Sloth wrote:
orion wrote:

So you are saying it does not matter if the US becomes more restrictive, because it becomes less attractive anyway?

Are you sure that you understand how that global competition thing works?

I’m saying that returnees going home due to immigration policies warranted a mere “some.” While other factors warranted a “most significant” by the authors.

Is it ok if I count that as a “no” then?

Where are you going with this? The paper isn’t even pointing to immigration policy as a significant factor, and you want…well, what?

I am wondering how you separate immigration policies from family ties, job restrictions and general quality of life.

Not to mention that someone like Lixy only has to have a family name that does not translate well into English, plus a few critical posts on an American website, to simply disappear and be tortured.

If you do not want them, they won´t come.

If that is a matter of official policy or just a general sentiment that is reflected in populist policy measures hardly matters.

[/quote]

Unbelievable. You’d think I had made up the portion I quoted.

They are leaving for jobs elsewhere. Maybe elsewhere now actually has attractive jobs to consider, especially as the US economy slowed? Maybe, previously uncompetitive economies are…wait for it…competitive now. Who the hell was stupid enough to think economic disparities would remain constant between every nation? Isn’t it a free-market arguement that trade helps developing economies? But, golly-gee, leave it to an Austrian free-marketer to try and use the fact that other nations might actually have attractive jobs now, as something to beat the US over the head with.

Maybe they miss mommy, daddy, and sister too? You know, the FRIGGEN paper actually suggests this!

What the hell are Europeans doing criticizing US immigration policy? The effects of your policies are creating a huge backlash through Europe, and you come here bragging about it?

I’m currently going to school with some of the most intelligent individuals from around the world. They’re receiving advanced degrees in a wide variety of fields. Many of them have visas that DO NOT ALLOW THEM TO STAY IN THE US AFTER GRADUATION* . Many are actually MANDATED to return “home” for a period of time.

I’m not sure how the “send the best and brightest back where they came from” policy came about, but it should be changed. These folks should have visas stapled to the back of their diplomas upon graduation. I don’t really care what one’s opinion is about low-skilled immigration, it seems absolutely insane to push out the most intelligent people the world has to offer.

*beyond approximately one year after graduation assuming they can find an employer to sponsor them.

Oh, and the “brain drain” has been working in the favor of the US for a long time now… I think we should enact policies that continue this long running trend.

[quote]Sloth wrote:
What the hell are Europeans doing criticizing US immigration policy? The effects of your policies are creating a huge backlash through Europe, and you come here bragging about it? [/quote]

Yeah. Flag waiving crowds of “God bless Europe” are all over the place. And patriotism (the lapel-pin wearing kind) is at the center of political discussion. And all European countries are passing crap such as the Military Commissions Act.

More seriously, Europeans have a problem with immigration from ex-colonies, not with open borders and/or equal opportunity. And I find that ironic to say the least.

[quote]lixy wrote:
Sloth wrote:
What the hell are Europeans doing criticizing US immigration policy? The effects of your policies are creating a huge backlash through Europe, and you come here bragging about it?

Yeah. Flag waiving crowds of “God bless Europe” are all over the place. And patriotism (the lapel-pin wearing kind) is at the center of political discussion. And all European countries are passing crap such as the Military Commissions Act.

More seriously, Europeans have a problem with immigration from ex-colonies, not with open borders and/or equal opportunity. And I find that ironic to say the least.[/quote]

Europe can pick up all these rejected immigrants! “Let’s go bitch at the US that they’re not snapping up the brightest fast enough, before we can.” Let’s use a paper that doesn’t even present immigration policy as one of the more significant factors, to make our case.

What are you guys complaining about?! Throw those borders wide open and pat yourselves on the back. Take them all in and become the economic juggernaut of the future. Why complain about this blessing?

[quote]Sloth wrote:

What are you guys complaining about?!

[/quote]

They probably want to move to the US.