The NPG Journal: Vol. 5, No. 7- 8/8/12
A Monthly Commentary on Population and
Presented by Negative Population Growth, Inc.
COMMENTARY: by NPG President Donald Mann
I always find reviewing the results of our annual NPG Member Questionnaire to be highly useful in gaining insight into how our members view current population and immigration issues. This year is no different.
Our 2012 Survey mailed the second week in July, and in recent weeks hundreds of completed questionnaires have started to arrive at our office. If you have not already returned yours, please do so as soon as possible so your opinions can be included in our final report to Elected Leaders.
From a sampling of the returns we’ve received thus far (see select early results in an accompanying story below), it is heartening to find that our members continue to give strong backing to NPG’s legislative goals and educational activities.
A huge percentage of our members continue to: oppose full amnesty/citizenship for illegals presently in our country; feel that generous social and financial benefits attract illegal immigrants to our country; demand an end to tax refunds to illegals via the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC program); back states in fighting illegal immigration; want to see Congress enact mandatory E-Verify; and strongly endorse restricting the number of relatives new citizens can bring into our country through chain migration.
I was especially pleased to see that NPG’s goal to cap legal immigration at 200,000 people per year garners widespread support. Today, that number is over 1 million and it must be cut back if we are going to make any progress in limiting population growth. This is presently a “hot” political issue and there are tremendous forces at work trying to actually raise – not lower – the number of people who enter our country legally. Right now the government is giving away scores of visas, driven by demands from businesses who want foreign high-skilled workers, at the expense of jobs for Americans. The political turmoil in the Middle East is also creating a need for more refugee visas. And as the Obama Administration moves forward with plans to let millions of “students” stay in our country, there will be tremendous pressure to allow family chain migration in the years ahead.
Never has there been a more important time for our elected leaders to draw a line in the sand and declare: “We must place a limit on legal immigration!” NPG feels that number should not exceed 200,000, but any major reduction will be a positive step forward. It is important to remember that even the highly-respected U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform, headed by former Texas Congresswoman Barbara Jordan, recommended in 1995 we place a cap of 550,000 legal immigrants annually – way less than today’s 1 million plus.
On the educational front, we are pleased to get almost 100% backing for NPG’s educational programs in our Member Questionnaire. We must continue these programs and expand them as much as possible to take our message to the next generation and get them involved as anti-population growth activists. This need is underscored by the fact that each year our survey reminds us that the large majority of NPG members are currently over 50 years of age. Reaching America’s youth is incredibly important.
Another issue which seems to hit home with our members is that the national media is “too politically correct” in presenting a realistic picture of the growing immigration problems in our nation. We are up against biased, one-sided reporting on an issue that is critical to our nation’s future. It is vital that NPG has the funds we need to invest heavily in media advertising, taking our message of too many people to millions of American citizens.
In addition, a great many NPG members are very concerned about how our nation will cope with an additional 30 million people per decade in a time when we are already financially up against a wall. As runaway spending is coupled with soaring population growth, NPG must be more aggressive than ever before in contacting elected leaders to make clear that both are unsustainable in the long term.
One revelation from our sampling of early Questionnaires shows that NPG members would like us to put much more emphasis on the environmental consequences of population growth. Please know that we will be more responsive to this concern as we move forward and make members much more aware of our actions. It is important to highlight that a large portion of our educational activities is centered on the environment, as many schools will not allow teachers to touch the highly volatile issue of immigration in their classrooms. We also constantly monitor environmental issues and put the full weight of our organization behind positively resolving environmental threats. And we are well aware of our duty to educate the American people that the key to leaving our children and grandchildren a livable world is an environment that is cleaner and healthier than the one we enjoy today.
On a final note, we urge all of our members to visit our website www.NPG.org. Our survey showed that a large majority of our members have yet to do so. They are thus missing out on the wealth of information it contains, as well as being as up-to-date as possible on all our activities – many of which are supported through generous member contributions. The posting of the final tally for our 2012 NPG Member Questionnaire results will also soon be posted there. Thank you again to all who participated in this important project.
GLOBAL WARMING: FACT OR FICTION? AN ONGOING SENATE DEBATE
This year, the highly-charged issue of global warming has almost disappeared from political debate. However, EcoWatch last week reported how Senator Bernie Sanders (I, VT) took to the floor of the U.S. Senate recently and chastised his colleague, Senator James Inhofe (R, OK), the top Republican and former Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, for not seeing the reality of the situation.
Senator Sanders’ main complaint against Senator Inhofe seemed to be that he does not accept the “science” of global warming, dismissing much research and many studies as not being advanced by “real scientists.” Sanders argued that devaluing the findings of respected organizations from across the U.S. and the world is a mistake, stating “climate change is occurring and rigorous scientific research demonstrates that the greenhouse gases emitted by human activities are the primary driver.”
Senator Sanders stood firm that we cannot ignore global warming, citing current climate news and statistics that have been dominating the headlines here in the U.S. in recent years, and especially this summer.
According to Senator Sanders:
- Studies by NASA, based on records dating back a century, found that nine of the 10 warmest years on record occurred since 2000;
- The insurance industry cites that property damage from extreme weather increased in the U.S. from $3 billion a year in the 1980s to $20 billion a year today;
- 2.1 million acres in the western U.S. have burned in wildfires this year;
- Two-thirds of the country is presently experiencing drought;
- Extreme summer storms have flooded parts of the Midwest and Atlantic seaboard; and
- The last 12 months were the warmest 12-month period on record in the U.S.
The EcoWatch report notes that Senator Sanders concluded his floor remarks by stating: “It is time for Congress to get serious about global warming, and to work to transform our energy system. That starts by making sure that in this, the so-called greatest deliberative body, we deliberate with facts not myths.”
NPG has made clear for years – throughout the multi-year debate on climate change – that ever-increasing population in the U.S. and around the world is definitely a contributing factor to climate change. This year’s extensive droughts are causing havoc in all areas of our country with its current 313 million people. If we do nothing about population growth and allow our nation to grow to 438 million people by mid-century, we will experience serious strains on our limited water resources and even greater demands on our national energy grid.
“ENGLISH ONLY” GETS A HEARING IN CONGRESS
The House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on the Constitution was the scene of hearings on August 2nd, when legislators took up Congressman Steve King’s (R, IA) bill H.R. 997, the “English Language Unity Act of 2011,” which would make English the official language of the United States.
Congressman King, who has been a strong advocate of this issue for many years made clear the need for his bill by stating: “Our language is getting subdivided by some forces of the federal government. It is time to speak with a common voice.”
The core part of the legislation would require all federal government communications, including voter and ballot materials, to be conducted in English. It would also nullify a Clinton-era executive order that requires federal agencies to provide interpreters for non-English speakers accessing social programs.
Congressman King holds that the majority of Americans are behind him in this effort and H.R. 997 currently has 122 co-sponsors in the U.S. House of Representatives. U.S. News and World Report notes that: “In 1996, the U.S. House passed a similar ‘English as the official language’ bill that never made it to the floor in the Senate.” The same fate may await H.R. 997, since a hearing typically advances a piece of legislation, sources hold that this bill will not receive any full consideration by the full House during the present Congress.
That will not deter King – he has advanced this issue for a number of years, beginning when he was an Iowa State Senator. In 2002, Iowa formally adopted English as the official state language.
The hearing on H.R. 997 provided a forum for opponents to claim that the bill is racist. Panel member Congressman John Conyers (D, MI) went so far as to mock the hearing, delivering his entire opening remarks in Spanish.
Congressman King responded to his critics by telling The Huffington Post that: “The argument that diversity is our strength has never really been backed up by logic. …unity is where our strength is. Our Founding Fathers understood that. Modern-day multiculturalists are defying that.”
U.S. News and World Report quoted him as defending his bill by stating: “A common language is the most unifying force known through history. More powerful than race, ethnicity, more powerful than common experiences or even religion, let’s have a united America that is going in the same direction.”
NPG supports passage of H.R. 997. Please contact your Congressional Representative to voice your support of this important bill.
FRACKING UNDER ATTACK
Fracking, the concept of hydraulic fracturing to release trapped natural gas below the earth’s surface, is being hailed by political and business leaders across America as the new ticket to create our nation’s energy independence. Headlines proclaim that by investing heavily in this new method to reach huge deposits of natural gas in the coming years, the U.S. will soon be the “new Saudi Arabia” for fossil fuels.
However, environmentalists across the nation are united in saying: “Hold it! Not so fast!”
As interest in fracking mounts and states move swiftly to tap into the energy riches in their area, a huge controversy has erupted as to whether or not fracking is poisoning our air and water and could prove seriously detrimental to the health of millions of Americans.
In late July, more than 5,000 people gathered on the lawn of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. to demand that Congress act to stop fracking. The group then moved downtown to the headquarters of America’s Natural Gas Alliance and the American Petroleum Institute.
According to EcoWatch, the protesters included people from 136 local and national organizations from all over the nation – including Colorado, Pennsylvania, Ohio and North Carolina, where this issue has become a political hot potato.
Hope Taylor, a farmer near Durham who serves as executive director of Clean Water for NC, was quoted as saying: “Just weeks ago in North Carolina, our legislature ripped up decades of groundwater protections for rural drinking water, in order to allow fracking and invite in dirty industry campaign dollars.”
EcoWatch noted that: “Rally participants have three demands: an end to dirty and dangerous fracking, closure of the seven legal loopholes that let frackers in the oil and gas industry ignore the Safe Drinking Water Act, Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act, and full enforcement of existing laws to protect families and communities from the effects of fracking.”
For more information on fracking and NPG’s position on this emerging trend, we invite you to read our recent Forum paper by Lindsey Grant, Is Fracking the Answer? To What?
A POWERFUL PRESENTATION ON POPULATION GROWTH
Educating Americans about population growth has been a formidable task for NPG for more than 40 years. We welcome all efforts in illustrating how constantly adding more people to our nation and world will have dire consequences.
That is why we applaud the work of two reporters for the Los Angeles Times who have put together an exceptional story on population growth via individual stories, videos, maps and photos.
Writer Kenneth R. Weiss and photographer Rich Loomis traveled to Kenya, Uganda, China, the Philippines, India, Afghanistan, and other countries to create a superior presentation under the headline Beyond 7 Billion. We highly recommend this series.
Weiss and Loomis introduce their report by noting: “After remaining stable for most of human history, the world’s population has exploded over the last two centuries. The boom is not over: The biggest generation in history is just entering the childbearing years. The coming wave will reshape the planet, and the impact will be greatest in the poorest, most unstable countries.”
All of the key topics related to population growth are covered, including: hunger, environmental impact, access to contraception, limited resources, sustainability, political tinderboxes resulting from a growing youth population, and the choices we have to make today for the future. In one video the reporters remind us that they are not covering a crisis without solutions, as they note that population growth is “an absolutely addressable problem.”
Weiss and Loomis have done a superb job telling the story of what’s ahead for the world if we fail to address today’s population crisis. We can only hope that they will soon put their talents to work to create another powerful documentary that would focus singularly on the United States. Such a targeted piece could only help demonstrate to the American public that the problems of population growth are not limited to third world or fast-emerging nations. We hope you will take a moment to review this story!
CIS ON IMMIGRATION
Key leaders of The Center for Immigration Studies, including Tom Godfrey, Steven A. Camarota, Stephen Tordella, and Nancy Wemmerus Rosene, presented a major paper at the Population Association of America Annual Meeting in San Francisco in May that is now available online. A portion of the abstract for the paper notes:
“We first replicate the official 2008 Census Bureau projections by race/ethnicity and then develop separate routines and assumptions for immigrants and natives. The most important finding so far is that immigration accounts for the overwhelming majority of future U.S. population growth. Future immigration by itself will add about 100 million new residents to the U.S. population by 2050, accounting for about three-fourths of population growth. Moreover, if immigration continues at the level the Census Bureau expects, it would not be possible to stabilize the U.S. population even if native fertility were dramatically lower.” Go to www.CIS.org to access the entire paper.
THE PRICE OF NOT ENFORCING AMERICA’S IMMIGRATION LAWS
FoxNews.com called the results of a just-released Congressional study a “Shocking New Report on Illegal Immigrant Crime.” NPG agrees.
In a report released last week by the House Judiciary Committee in the U.S. Congress, it was noted that Department of Homeland Security records from October 2008 through July 2011, analyzed by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service, showed that “Roughly one in six illegal immigrants is re-arrested on criminal charges within three years of release.” House Republicans on the committee described these as “symptoms of a ‘dangerous and deadly’ immigration policy.”
As FoxNews.com reported: “The records show 276,412 reported charges against illegal and criminal immigrants over that three-year period as identified by Secure Communities, a federal program that essentially attempts to make best use of resources by identifying and prioritizing which illegal immigrants pose the biggest threat to public safety and should be arrested or deported. Of the 160,000 people in the database, more than 26,000 were re-arrested – accounting for nearly 58,000 crimes and violations.” That translates into roughly a one-in-six recidivism rate.
While drunk driving (nearly 8,500) and drug-related cases (more than 6,000) led the list, crimes also “included murder, battery, rape, kidnapping and nearly 3,000 thefts.”
In responding to the Committee report, ICE’s spokeswoman Barbara Gonzalez noted that: “Because ICE is congressionally funded to remove a limited number of individuals each year, the agency prioritizes our enforcement efforts.” FoxNews.com reported that the agency in fiscal year 2011 removed more than 396,000 people – the largest number in ICE history – and quoted Gonzalez as stating that “roughly 55 percent of those removed were convicted criminals.”
NPG notes that the end result of this study should not just be ammunition for leveling more attacks on ICE by members of Congress, but rather should be the basis for a major cooperative effort whereby ICE officials and Congressional leaders ensure that whatever funding is needed to get all illegals deported is made available and
used! Contact your Congressional Representative to voice your support for such action.
DROUGHT AND POPULATION
Written by Michael Webber, the associate director of the Center for International Energy and Environmental Policy at the University of Texas, Austin, a July 23rd article in The New York Times reporting on this year’s drought contained the following observations:
“We’re now in the midst of the nation’s most widespread drought in 60 years, stretching across 29 states and threatening farmers, their crops and livestock. But there is another risk as water becomes more scarce. Power plants may be forced to shut down, and oil and gas production may be threatened.
Our energy system depends on water. About half of the nation’s water withdrawals every day are just for cooling power plants. In addition, the oil and gas industries use tens of millions of gallons a day, injecting water into aging oil fields to improve production, and to free natural gas in shale formations through hydraulic fracturing. Those numbers are not large from a national perspective, but they can be significant locally.
….Population growth will mean over 100 million more people in the United States over the next four decades who will need energy and water to survive and prosper. Economic growth compounds that trend, as per-capita energy and water consumption tend to increase with affluence. Climate-change models also suggest that droughts and heat waves may be more frequent and severe.”
Webber’s article highlights the critical need for the government to take the lead in working with counties, energy companies and farmers to better compile data that can plan for the future. In addition, he cites the need to greatly encourage water conservation and the use of reclaimed water.
He concludes by stating: “Because rivers and aquifers can span many states (or countries), because there is no alternative to water, and because water represents a critical vulnerability for our energy system, governments at all levels have a stake in working with industry to find solutions. The downside of doing nothing – more blackouts – is too serious to ignore.”
FASTEST-GROWING CITIES IN 15 MONTHS
The short span of 15 months between April, 2010 and July, 2011is a blink of an eye to some people, and few would expect that some of America’s cities could gain much in their population in that period.
However, a recent report by 24/7 Wall St. focused on 10 U.S. cities which had population increases of between 2.5% and 5%.
The fastest-growing city in the group was New Orleans, LA which is still rebounding from the effects of Hurricane Katrina. 24/7 Wall St. notes that its population growth of 4.9% is more than six times the national average of 0.73%. At present, the city’s population is still only at 80% of pre-Katrina levels.
Austin, TX comes in as registering the next-fastest growth, picking up about 2,000 people per month. Rounding out the top three is Plano, TX, which grew by almost 10,000 people – a 3.6% growth rate. 24/7 Wall St. attributes this to the strong availability of jobs in the Dallas-Plano-Irving area.
The top ten cities with the highest growth, rounded to the nearest 1,000, include:
New Orleans, LA – 23,000 (4.9%)
Austin, TX – 30,000 (3.8%)
Plano, TX – 10,000 (3.8%)
Denver, CO – 20,000 (3.3%)
Raleigh, NC – 13,000 (7.6%)
Tampa, FL – 11,000 (3.1%)
Atlanta, GA – 12,000 (3%)
Washington, DC – 16,000 (2.7%)
Charlotte, NC – 20,000 (2.7%)
El Paso, TX – 16,000 (2.5%)
NPG now has its own YouTube channel – www.YouTube.com/NPGInc.
Right now, it is possible to review the winners of the NPG Video Scholarship Contest and forward these creative pieces on overpopulation to your friends, relatives, and other associates to help spread our message. In the coming months, we will be looking for other postings for our exclusive channel that will further enhance our ability to reach a greater audience – especially young people.
NPG 2012 MEMBER QUESTIONNAIRE RESULTS TO DATE
We have printed below the responses to some of the 19 questions which comprised our latest Member Questionnaire. These are not final numbers – we are still tallying Questionnaires as they come in. The information below represents a sampling of what we have received to date. To review all of the questions, please go to www.NPG.org.
2. Do you feel that the Obama Administration is better serving the open-border lobby or the American public in issuing more relaxed rules related to immigration enforcement?
a. Open-border Lobby (79%)
b. American Public (11%)
c. No Opinion (7%)
d. No Answer (3%)
6. Do you feel that your home state is dedicating too many valuable tax dollars to programs that serve illegal immigrants?
a. Yes (81%)
b. No (3%)
c. No Opinion (14%)
d. No Answer (2%)
7. How would you assess the attitude of your fellow citizens when it comes to dealing with illegal immigrants?
a. People feel it is a serious problem for our state which is growing more costly every year (76%)
b. People have accepted illegal immigrants as a problem we have to live with (13%)
c. We don’t have much of a problem with illegal aliens (4%)
d. No Opinion (5%)
e. No Answer (2%)
11. Do you agree that Congress should pass H.R. 140, The Birthright Citizenship Act, to revise the current policy on anchor babies whereby all babies born on U.S. soil automatically become citizens?
a. Yes (75%)
b. No (19%)
c. No Opinion (6%)
16. After 40 years of environmental advances many studies show that progress is being thwarted by today’s fast-growing population numbers. How much emphasis should NPG put on the environmental consequences of too many people in our programs and actions?
a. Much More Emphasis (72%)
b. More Emphasis (19%)
c. Same as Current (6%)
d. No Opinion (3%)
18. How do you feel NPG can best work to keep the issue of responsible immigration and population reform in front of both the American public and our elected leaders? Please select no more than three options.
The most popular responses were:
Run additional Too Many People ad campaigns
Expand educational programs for young people
Build a stronger partnership with elected leaders
Distribute more National Public Opinion Surveys
NPG.org NOW LINKED TO EPA
Whenever we discover an interesting website that is sure to be enjoyed by NPG members, we’re quick to link it to our NPG home page.
Our latest addition is our link to the EPA’s “My Environment” website where by entering your city and zip code you can tap into a wealth of environmental information specific to your town or city. Categories cover My Maps, My Air, My Water, My Energy, My Health, My Land and My Community. Information is updated daily. Try it!
NPG STUDENT SCHOLARSHIP WINNERS
Earlier this year, NPG celebrated its 40th Anniversary by putting the call out to students nationwide to participate in our exciting scholarship competitions. This year, we inaugurated an exciting new video competition, revived our NPG Student Poster Contest which was highly successful in 2008, and offered our annual essay challenge which we have now sponsored for 7 years.
In total, we’ve distributed a total of $21,500 and are proud to salute those who claimed the top prizes in all three categories. We are also especially thankful to all the teachers nationwide who helped make this project a huge success and the hundreds of NPG members who provided an extra gift to help us expand our educational programs.
The following students received 2012 NPG Scholarships:
2012 STUDENT VIDEO CONTEST WINNERS:
$2,500 – Jackson Kitchell, DeSales University,
Center Valley, PA
$1,000 – Carly DaSilva, The College of New Jersey,
$1,000 – Katy Martin, University of Wisconsin,
$1,000 – Ryan McCluney, University of North Carolina,
$1,000 – Forrest Anderson Mares, Northwestern
College, St. Paul, MN
$1,000 – Anna Winslow, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
2012 STUDENT POSTER CONTEST WINNERS:
$2,500 - Angela McCauley, Albemarle High School,
$1,000 - Katherine Bartlett, New Hanover High School,
$1,000 - Chiara Ferrari-Wong, Bergen County
Academies, Hackensack, NJ
$1,000 - Devin McNulty, Mount St. Joseph’s Academy,
$1,000 - Gabriela Pabon, Dillard Center for the Arts,
Ft. Lauderdale, FL
2012 STUDENT ESSAY CONTEST WINNERS:
$2,500 - Alison Tuch, Virginia Tech University,
$1,000 - Sarah Abohana, University of Washington,
$1,000 - Bailey Cassidy, DePaul University, Chicago, IL
$1,000 - William Davison, Ozarks Technical Community
College, Springfield, MO
$1,000 - Cheryl Gaul, Massachusetts Institute of
Technology, Cambridge, MA
$1,000 - Corey Gier, Fort Hays State University,
2012 Scholarship Winning Entries are Online! Take a look at them today!
We’ve posted all of the winning entries in our 40th Anniversary student competitions online at www.NPG.org.
“As we still wait on detailed guidance from the administration, it’s impossible to understand the full scope of the administration’s changes, but what we’ve seen so far concerns us greatly. As one example, prosecutorial discretion for DREAMers is solely based on the individual’s claims. Our orders are: If an alien says they went to high school, then let them go. If they say they have a GED, then let them go.”
National Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Council (the labor union for ICE officers)
The Daily Caller 7/27/12
“Mexican workers sent home nearly $23 billion last year, greater than the direct
foreign investment made by all multinational corporations. Remittances are now equal to the foreign currency exchange generated by Mexico’s tourism industry or its oil sector.
According to economic surveys, about half of the 112 million Mexicans have family living in the United States, and one in five has a relative who regularly sends money back home. The average amount sent in May was $329.”
Willam Booth and Nick Miroff
The Washington Post 7/23/12
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 so many articles speak to immigration and population issues but often fail to address the central cause of many problems – TOO MANY PEOPLE.
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 and its negative impacts on our environment, resources and quality of life.
NPG President Donald Mann offers his personal insight and commentary on individual stories, especially those that challenge, confirm and/or complement our NPG Research and Forum Papers. The goal of the NPG Journal is to greatly expand NPG’s educational programs. 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 level – focused on taking action to help resolve today’s immigration crisis and work to halt, and eventually reverse America’s out-of-control population growth.
We welcome your feedback to articles posted on the NPG Journal and urge you to forward to us the e-mail address of friends you think would like to receive a complimentary copy of the NPG Journal on a monthly basis. Contact us at www.NPG.org.
Negative Population Growth, Inc. (NPG) is a national nonprofit membership organization with over 30,000 members nationwide. It was founded in 1972 to educate the American public and political leaders about the devastating effects of overpopulation on our environment, resources, and standard of living. We believe that our nation is already vastly overpopulated in terms of the long-range carrying capacity of its resources and environment.
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