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Quotation of the Day…

… is from page 40 of the late, great Julian Simon’s 1996 masterpiece, The Ultimate Resource 2:

There is one resource that has shown a trend of increasing scarcity rather than increasing abundance – the most important of all resources – human beings. Yes, there are more people on Earth now than ever before. But if we measure the scarcity of people the same way that we measure the scarcity of other economic goods – by how much we must pay to obtain their services – we see that wages and salaries have been going up all over the world, in poor countries as well as in rich countries, throughout the preceding decades and centuries. The amount that you must pay to obtain the services of a driver or a cook has risen in India, just as the price of a driver or cook – or economist – has risen in the United States. This increase in the price of people’s services is a clear indication that people are becoming more scarce even though there are more of us.

DBx: The above observation makes clear that the world today isn’t suffering from over-population. And while it doesn’t seal any deal in debates over immigration in the U.S., Simon’s observation – along with America’s overwhelmingly positive and long history of immigration – does suggest that the burden of persuasion ought to be not on those of us who support far more more open immigration, but, instead, on our intellectual opponents.