Why we must address U.S. population growth
If the U.S population continues to grow like the 1900-2000 decade (13 percent every 10 years), mathematically the U.S. will have half of China's current population within the lifetimes of today's children.
Why should we stabilize the U.S. population?
Due to many factors and policies, the United States is overwhelmed with many problems -- high unemployment, severe chronic budget deficits, failing education, rising poverty, out-of control healthcare costs, shortage of water, high energy costs, urban sprawl, etc. These problems are exacerbated by 3 million people added to the U.S. every year who are essentially jobseekers, students, patients, drivers, polluters, and users of water, energy and other natural and fiscal resources.
Considering that the median household income in the U.S. is way below $55,000 and the cost of educating a child a year alone averages well over $9000, the taxes that most people pay, especially those who have limited incomes,are insufficient to cover the numerous social services provided to their families such as education, construction and maintenance of roads/bridges, fire/police/emergency/prison/court services, traffic/pollution control, homeland security measures, etc. Therefore, continued pouplation growth will put additional pressure on our government budgets, increase poverty in the United States and further degrades our environment.
More people competing for dwindling resources will increase social and racial tensions. Leaders in China are under constant pressure to create jobs: They realize that high unemployment will lead to social unrest and political instability.
Due to our highly polluting lifestyle, continued population growth in the United States will also exacerbate global warming.
Is it possible that the United States can become as overpopulated as China?
The U.S. population has more than quadrupled since 1900, from 75 million to 313 million in early 2012. This despite a time-out from mass immigration between 1925 to 1965 during which the average immigration level was less than 200,000 per year. (Since 1990, every year over 1.2 million foreign-born nationals come and live permanently in the United States.) In recent years, immigration advocates have continuously pushed for legislation to increase immigration. If the U.S. quadruples its population one more time, it will have over 1.25 billion people (313 million X 4), which is about India's current population!
We must realize that the inconceivable can become reality. For example, in the 1940's, when Los Angeles County was mostly farm land, few Californians could imagine that within less than 40 years that area could become so highly congested. Presently, grade-school students in North Carolina speak 170 languages while most students in many school districts in the Twin Cities are minority children.
How does mass immigration contribute to the U.S. population growth?
Since 1987, legal immigration has averaged about 1 million a year. According to conservative estimates, about 400,000 illegal immigrants enter the U.S. annually. An analysis of Census data by the Center for Immigration Studies shows that nearly 70 percent of the population growth between 1990 to 2000 was immigration-related. Our federal government also grants many categories of "temporary" working visas to foreign-born professionals and most of them stay permanently in the U.S.
We are a nation of immigrants. How can we support immigration reduction?
If responsible parents limit their family sizes so that they can better care for their existing children, shouldn't the United States stabilize its population so that it can better provide for Americans citizens and legal immigrants already here? In addition, circumstances in this country have changed: The United States is now the greatest debtor nation in the world's history due to many of our shortsighted domestic and foreign policies. (The list of foreign holders of U.S. Treasury notes is posted on the website of the U.S. Department of Treasury, http://www.treas.gov/tic/mfh.txt). Furthermore, an Associated Press article, "Census: 1 in 7 Americans live in poverty", cites the latest Census Bureau report: The overall poverty rate in the United States "climbed to 14.3 percent, or 43.6 million people".
American leaders must realize that the U.S. is an empire in decline. This is the essence of Harvard Professor Niall Ferguson's message when interviewed on Tech Ticker on October 20, 2009.
In addition, according to Cornell University Professor David Pimental, if the U.S. continues to lose farm land at its current rates, by 2040, this country will not be able to export food. If the U.S. population growth continues, from which countries should we import food to feed our growing population?
Furthermore, an Associated Press article of July 11, 2010 entitled "Debt commission leaders paint gloomy picture" posted on Yahoo! reported: "The heads of President Barack Obama's national debt commission painted a gloomy picture Sunday as the United States struggles to get its spending under control...The nation's total federal debt next year is expected to exceed $14 trillion - about $47,000 for every U.S. resident."
On July 22, 2010 the Los Angeles Times extensively reported on Federal Reserve Charman Ben Bernanke's "unusually uncertain" economic outlook during congressional testimony of July 21:
"This is the worst labor market, the worst episode, since the Great Depression," Bernanke said of long-term unemployment. "Not only for the sake of the unemployed and for the short-term strength of the economy but also for a long-term viability in international competitiveness, I think we need to be very seriously concerned."
U.S. population growth set to pass half-billion
Census Bureau projections have historically been low
(Read and print this subsection as a separate pdf file.
In 1933 Herbert Hoover's Committee on Social Trends forecast that "we shall probably attain a population of between 145 and 150 million during the present century." This prediction was off by over 130 million.
- In 1996, Census Bureau projections under its most probable "middle series" scenario showed the U.S. population reaching 394 million in 2050. Updated projections released in January 2000 increased that mid-century projection to 404 million. After the 2000 census, the Bureau increased its current mid-level projection for U.S. population in 2050 to 420 million.
- Projections about future U.S. population involve assumptions about fertility, mortality, and immigration. Given the inherent uncertainties of these assumptions, it may be more accurate to project the U.S. population using the current growth rate, the rate for which we have hard data. From 1990 to 2000, our country's population increased from 249 million to 282 million-an increase of 13 percent.
- If we continue at our current growth rate, our population will reach 522 million in 2050-even without another amnesty! This is much closer to the high-level projection of 553 million for 2050 that the Bureau made in 2000 than it is to its mid-level projection of 404 million.
- That same high-level projection shows the U.S. population reaching 1.2 billion in the year 2100. (Current Census Bureau projections do not extend beyond 2050.)
- The Bureau report issued in 2000 also included a "zero net migration" projection. Under it, U.S. population would reach 377 million in 2100, versus 571 million under the mid-level projection. In other words, two-thirds of U.S. population growth results from immigration.
- The above projections were made before the amnesty and other immigration increases proposed in the Senate bill. According to the Congressional Budget Offi ce, that legislation would increase the number of legal immigrants by nearly 20 million just over the next decade. Robert E. Rector, a senior research fellow at the Heritage Foundation, estimated that the Senate bill would add 60 million legal immigrants to the U.S. over the next 20 years.