Arguments that Julian Simon would understand

The author of the 1981 book The Ultimate Resource might endorse many of the arguments Lyman Stone makes in a Federalist column.

The solution, [David] Frum suggests, is to cut immigration by even more than the Trump administration suggests. …

… Frum made one comment that simply cannot stand. He says:

“Under present immigration policies, the U.S. population will exceed 400 million by 2050. Nobody is seriously planning for such population growth—building the schools and hospitals these people will need, planning for the traffic they will generate.” …

… There are people planning for the 400 millionth American. There are people planning for, dreaming for, the billionth American. I am one of them. And the fact that David Frum has hysterics over 400 million people being in America 30 years from now reveals him as a declinist with no real vision for the country and little to offer its policymakers in terms of a way forward. …

… Contrary to Frum’s declinism, the actual solution to America’s problems is the same solution we used throughout our storied history: get bigger. Growth heals many wounds. …

… An American population of 400 million and beyond is not only imaginable, not only being planned for: it’s the world most Americans should want. It’s a world where China’s moment of apparent supremacy is just that: a moment. It’s a world where the 21st century, and indeed the 22nd, are secured for democracy and capitalism, and basically through peaceful means.

Mitch Kokai / Senior Political Analyst

Mitch Kokai is senior political analyst for the John Locke Foundation. He joined JLF in December 2005 as director of communications. That followed more than four years as chie...

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