COMMENTARY by NPG President Donald Mann
While listening to a discussion about immigration reform on the radio recently, I heard a political pundit declare that once President Obama unveils his new immigration rules at the end of this year, “the American people will have no idea what hit them.”
Right now, we don’t really know what the president is going to say in his post-Congressional-elections immigration speech. Personally, I believe many Americans are aware of the facts – and the implications – of this critical issue. NPG and other organizations have been working diligently to highlight the true costs of lax immigration policies, and I believe we are making great progress.
However, far too many of our fellow citizens and elected leaders still don’t fully understand how the irresponsible tactics of several recent White House administrations have put America’s future at great risk.
I blame the mainstream media’s almost total embrace of amnesty/citizenship – and its simultaneous failure to responsibly present the pros and cons of increasing population and immigration – for bringing our nation to this point. For more than a decade, the press has abdicated its responsibility to present the unbiased facts regarding the political machinations, mishaps, and disasters that have defined U.S. immigration policy.
Too often it seems that balanced reporting and accuracy are no longer of interest to today’s journalists. Almost every time I read an article on immigration, the story has only been reported halfway – and the population implications have been totally ignored. With the media almost 100% in their corner, the pro-immigration lobby is never called to address the facts presented by NPG and other organizations – which clearly demonstrate how increased immigration has greatly harmed our nation.
The proof is all around us. America’s ever-growing population has resulted in major problems: high unemployment, overtaxed entitlement programs, housing shortages, crowded schools and hospitals, environmental devastation, dwindling water and energy supplies, a crumbling infrastructure… As we continue to grow, these problems will only worsen.
Sadly, the national press has decided to ignore these population-driven crises – which are totally avoidable with the proper policies in place. And President Obama has promised further changes to U.S. immigration policies which, if implemented, may radically change the future of our nation.
Is it time to raise the white flag and surrender in the fight for responsible immigration reform?
The answer is a resounding “NO!”
Despite the media’s failings, thankfully Americans know that we can’t fix our immigration problems with the stroke of a presidential pen. National polls show that if President Obama issues a new Executive Directive on immigration without the consent of Congress, he will do so against the wishes of the majority of Americans.
In all, the White House is set to act on immigration with the blessings of a compliant press. Yet it is also very clear that the American people are paying attention. I’m convinced that we are unwilling to blindly accept a long-term immigration policy dictated by political correctness, especially one that does not serve our nation’s best interest.
The open-border, “growth at any cost” forces are ready to pop the champagne corks and celebrate when President Obama acts. We must be ready to remind them: “Not so fast.”
A single dictate cannot make for a national immigration policy. NPG is determined to make sure the American people know all the facts when Congress – not a unilateral administrative order – finally enacts one.
MAKING THE CASE FOR FEDERAL OWNERSHIP OF PUBLIC LANDS
There is a major debate under way in the Big Sky state of Montana. Advocates on both sides of the argument are attempting to sway legislators, who will soon decide whether to transfer federal lands to the care of the state.
A recent editorial in the Helena Independent Record reminded readers of all that’s at stake, siding with those who are looking to keep the federal government in charge. Highlighting the rich resources of our nation, the author notes the vital importance of responsible stewardship:
“The federal government manages about 25 million acres in Montana. That includes the very highest peaks to the lowest marshland. This land includes dense forests of cedars and ferns and dry expanses of sage brush and cactus. This land is ours. It is owned by the people of Montana, as well as every other citizen in the country. And its treasure isn’t just measured by the income realized by its utilization.
“…Forget the ridiculous cost of taking over the management of 25 million acres of land. Forget the expansive bureaucracy that would have to be created on a state level to do the job. Forget the increase in grazing fees to Montana’s ranchers. Just think for a minute on the impact public lands have on our way of life here in Montana.
“We have clean water, good grazing, unlimited recreation opportunities and the best views in the world because we live in a state abound with federal lands. Should they be managed better? I think even the federal land mangers themselves would say yes. But to accomplish this we must work together, compromise and find workable solutions. It’s a difficult process and always has been.”
NPG notes that the 2013 estimated population of Montana stands at 1,015,165. Although the state holds the 4th largest territory in America (just 7% smaller than California), it enjoys the benefits of accommodating a population size less than 3% of California’s. Ranking just 44th in population size and 48th in density, Montana residents enjoy a higher quality of life and a healthier environment – thanks to a far smaller, truly sustainable population. Clearly, when a population is lower – and when federal policies for environmental protection and preservation are enacted and enforced – the entire community benefits. NPG hopes that Montana will act as a prime example for the rest of America!
THE COST OF IMMIGRATION REFORM
Immigration is very much in the news these days. And while it is easy to find countless articles on the issues that frame the national debate, the subject of “costs” rarely comes up. That plays perfectly into the hands of the open-border and amnesty/citizenship lobbies, who don’t want Americans to consider the startling numbers.
At a time when our federal deficit is ballooning and the welfare state is expanding at record rates, the costs of absorbing millions of illegal aliens into our society – and providing them with legal access to such benefits as food stamps and Medicaid – cannot be ignored.
In a recent Forbes.com article, Jeffrey Dorfman cites a recent Heritage Foundation report that investigates this issue. He writes:
“The Heritage report estimates that illegal immigrants are currently collecting net government benefits with an annual value of $54.5 billion. Once legalized, that figure will rise to $106 billion per year. As they begin to retire and collect Social Security and Medicare, the financial drain rises again, to an estimated $160 billion annually.”
Dorfman focuses on how these costs to America’s taxpayers will not be evenly distributed. He states: “For those in the bottom 80 percent, their share will only be about $500 per year per household. However, for those in the top 20 percent, their share of the costs to support these legalized immigrants would be $120 billion per year, which works out to nearly $5,000 per year in additional tax burden per family earning over $100,000 per year.”
He concludes: “The total cost over this first generation of immigrants is estimated at a staggering $6.3 trillion in terms of total lifetime government benefits over and above the taxes the immigrants will pay in.”
NPG notes that is quite a massive tax burden to impose on today’s lagging economy and already-struggling families. The American people must demand that Congress limit the number of immigrants accepted by our vastly overpopulated nation.
FINANCING AMERICA’S FUTURE INFRASTRUCTURE
As part of its “Year of Action” campaign, the White House recently hosted an Infrastructure Investment Summit to move policy initiatives forward and solicit ideas on how to better leverage available financing for transportation, water, telecommunications, and energy sectors.
With America’s population growing by more than 115 million people since 1970, our nation’s infrastructure building and repair has fallen far short of keeping pace. As more people put more stress on these outdated and overburdened systems – especially our bridges and highways – there are huge concerns as to what lies ahead.
The American Society of Civil Engineers has said that America needs $3.6 trillion – yes, trillion – invested by 2020 to repair our existing infrastructure.
The summit will contribute to an inter-agency report on the topic, which is due for delivery to President Obama in mid-November. The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure is also expected to soon release a bipartisan report on the topic, all in the aim to accelerate private sector investment.
As part of its extensive campaign to halt our nation’s growing population, NPG has been consistent in urging elected leaders to back away from “growth at any cost” or “build, build, build” policies – which come with a huge price tag. The trillions of dollars needed now to repair America’s existing infrastructure does not include the trillions more that will be necessary in the very near future if our population continues to grow. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, America will add an estimated 80 million people by mid-century if we remain on our current population track.
While a White House summit is a start, this issue needs much more serious attention. Until we act to slow, halt, and eventually reverse U.S. population growth, our problems will only worsen.
CONSERVING AMERICA’S MOST IMPERILED SPECIES
Population growth and endangered species definitely don’t mix.
That is why NPG applauds Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell’s latest steps to release $35 million in new grants to 20 states, protecting some of the nation’s most threatened natural treasures.
In announcing this program, Jewell said: “These grants will enable states to work in voluntary partnership with private landowners and a wide variety of other stakeholders to preserve vital habitat and move these species down the road to recovery.”
Dan Forster, President of the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies and Director of the Georgia Wildlife Resources Division, reinforced the need to act now to keep certain species from becoming extinct. He stated: “We can wait for fish and wildlife species to decline to the point where we can’t do anything but react with expensive, last-ditch efforts, or we can take proactive steps to conserve wildlife and their habitats before it is too late.”
Some states which will share in this program include: North Carolina, Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Colorado. (A complete list of the 2014 grant awards is available here.)
Many of NPG’s critical educational programs are designed to foster greater public understanding of the links between U.S. population growth and our environmental resources. If we want to preserve our fragile ecosystem – including today’s endangered species – for future generations, we must reduce our population to a much smaller, truly sustainable size.
NEW NPG CALENDAR
In an effort to fund our important educational programs, NPG has created a beautiful full-color, 15-month calendar. Featuring the winning images from this year’s NPG Photo Scholarship Contest, the calendar also includes student commentary related to the challenges America faces in protecting our vulnerable environment. If you have already received your exclusive copy in the mail, we urge you to please return a generous contribution to support NPG’s educational efforts. If you would like a calendar, they are available to purchase for just $15 per copy. Order your copy today by emailing us at NPG@NPG.org, or call our office at (703) 370-9510.
SHARE THE NPG MESSAGE
Do you have friends, family members, or coworkers who share your concerns about America’s population and immigration policies?
If so, we urge you to invite them to stand beside us as an active member of NPG. As 2014 comes to a close and we review our plans for the year ahead, it is essential that NPG continues to build a foundation of supporters. Members like you help us fight for responsible population and immigration policies, keeping pressure on our elected leaders and informing our fellow citizens of the vital need to slow, halt, and eventually reverse U.S. population growth. The more people we have working together for a smaller, truly sustainable population, the more we can advance our mission and meet our shared goals.
Please send us the contact information of those you feel may be interested in joining our cause, and NPG will contact them with membership information. Forward their name, mailing and/or email address to NPG@NPG.org today!
U.S. POPULATION POSTERS AVAILABLE
Part of being an NPG advocate is working to spread our message in your community. That is why we publish and distribute countless educational materials each year.
One of NPG’s most popular items is our U.S. Population Poster, designed to ensure that America’s young people understand the real costs of our nation’s population growth. While we have mailed posters to thousands of schools and teachers across the country, we still need to reach many, many more.
Please email NPG today at NPG@NPG.org and order up to five posters, which you can distribute in your local area at public libraries, community bulletin boards, or schools. We will send them to you immediately, along with an NPG Student Fact Sheet that can be replicated and shared.
NEW ON NPG’S WEBSITE – OVERPOPULATION IN YOUR STATE
NPG’s website has long been a “go-to” source for relevant population statistics, hosting tens of thousands of visitors each month. Now, individuals seeking data on how their states are faring can visit NPG’s Overpopulation in Your State section.
This new posting is full of current articles on population-related topics, and highlights the critical link between population growth and our declining quality of life. With data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau, individual state pages illustrate how population growth affects every community – and how it will have an even more devastating impact in the future. We are pleased to offer this expanded information to both NPG members and researchers worldwide.
“Thank you for the wonderful scholarship. I really enjoyed working on my contest entry. I feel that this contest gave me a new outlook on the state of our world.”
2014 NPG Scholarship Winner
Columbia College Chicago, Chicago, IL
“You’d have to be in serious denial, or living under a rock, to not realize that humanity today is living beyond planetary means.”
“We can no longer tinker about the edges. We can no longer continue treating our addiction to fossil fuels as if there were no tomorrow, or there will be no tomorrow.”
Archbishop Desmond Tutu
Video calling for an end to the fossil fuel era
WHY THE NPG JOURNAL?
The NPG Journal (offered free to all recipients) exists to give more widespread distribution to timely news stories and articles related to population, immigration, environmental, and political issues that currently affect our daily life – or have the potential to seriously impact our future.
We realize not all news stories covering population issues will reflect NPG policies and goals. One of our main purposes in creating the NPG Journal is to expose these items to a wider audience, and to draw attention to the fact that many articles speak to immigration and population issues yet fail to address the central cause of many problems: U.S. population growth.
Ultimately, NPG would like to see writers at all levels make the obvious (to us, at least) connection between environmental and resource problems and the growing number of people in both the United States and the world. Unfortunately, most do not. To that end, we comment as necessary to help our readers see those links, in hopes they will continue to speak out on what we deem to be the most pressing issue of our time – population size and growth.
NPG President Donald Mann offers his personal insight and commentary on individual stories, especially those that challenge, confirm and/or complement our NPG Forum papers and research. The goal of the NPG Journal is to greatly expand NPG’s educational mission. NPG’s activities continue to emphasize the need for Americans to speak up on population issues and keep our nation – especially our elected leaders on the national, state, and local levels – focused on taking action to help resolve today’s immigration crisis and work to slow, halt, and eventually reverse America’s population growth.
We welcome your feedback to articles posted on the NPG Journal, and urge you to forward to us the e-mail addresses of friends you think would like to receive a complimentary copy of the NPG Journal on a monthly basis. Contact us today at NPG@NPG.org.
World population, now over 7.3 billion, is predicted to rise to 9 billion by 2050, an increase of almost two billion, or 23%, in the short space of only 34 years from now.In the highly unlikely event that per capita greenhouse gas emissions could possibly be decreased by an equal percentage in such a short space of time (a blink of an eye) the total amount of worldwide emission would remain the same!
From this simple illustration it would appear that without drastically reducing the size of world population, there is no solution to the problem.None at all.So then why do our world leaders pretend that there is one?What is to be gained by pretending rather than by proposing a solution that would solve the problem – a reduction in the size of world population to not more than 1- 2 billion?
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