The Population Ponzi Scheme

The crux of the argument for increased immigration by Mr. Bush and Clint Bolick (his co-author of a forthcoming book on “Immigration Wars”) is that the economy and social-welfare system will collapse without increased immigration. They write:

The birthrate in this country has fallen below the level necessary to sustain the population at the very time that millions of Americans are leaving the workforce and expecting retirement benefits. The nation needs energetic young workers to spur the economy and support an ever-increasing social-welfare burden.”

When you read about a falling birthrate and a dearth of workers, the words PONZI SCHEME should start flashing in your mind. The average annual number of births between 2000 and 2009 was more than four million. The population grew by about 2.8 million a year over the same period. The U.S. is currently issuing more than a million new green cards a year and admitting about as many long-term temporary foreign workers. But that is not enough to satisfy employers.

It’s true that as baby boomers retire the country is experiencing a transition in which the ratio of retirees to workers has increased in proportion to the number of those working. But pumping more foreign workers into the economy will only perpetuate the problem as those foreign workers age and retire. Like a Ponzi scheme, this can’t work indefinitely because sustaining a population requires resource inputs – food, water, non-renewable resources – and, therefore, has a limit.

When a Ponzi scheme collapses, those who have invested in it suffer. If the endless population expansion advocates have their way, the collapse will come when non-renewable resources – think petroleum and other energy resources are depleted and aquifers are pumped dry – and, at that point the loss will not be an economic investment, but something far worse.

About Author


Jack, who joined FAIR’s National Board of Advisors in 2017, is a retired U.S. diplomat with consular experience. He has testified before the U.S. Congress, U.S. Civil Rights Commission, and U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform and has authored studies of immigration issues. His national and international print, TV, and talk radio experience is extensive (including in Spanish).


  1. avatar

    Jack says :
    “It’s true that as baby boomers retire the country is experiencing a transition in which the ratio of retirees to workers has increased in proportion to the number of those working. But pumping more foreign workers into the economy will only perpetuate the problem as those foreign workers age and retire”

    That means in your own words had we not had these immigrants the proportion of retirees and younger working force would be much greater, therefore creating a bigger economic crises for the retirees and therefore the country’s GDP……..

    SO that is why we need to reverse that pyramid. The same problem has/had Germany and Canada…..that is the reason we became a POWER JACK!!!

    That is why Immigration reform is needed and this time has to be for everything where we should ended up with a better formula than the Canadians, EU’s and Australians……..

    You contradict yourself without looking at the whole picture………………………..

    • avatar


      If power were only a factor of population size, the United States would be a 4th rate power behind China, India, and the European Economic Community.

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  3. avatar

    ALL the problems confronting this nation are caused by crooked, lying politicians. Their purpose in office is to feather their own nest and not to manage the nation’s problems. Their “managing” results in constant theft from citizens.

    The fulltime politician and sometimes supreme court justice SOTOMEYER sounded conservative and bound by the constitution at her senate hearing but has acted like an Obama politician once in office.

  4. avatar

    This is such bs. How about if all that was paid in for the purpose of retirement was actualy used for that. That is what we were told it was for and it started out as volentary. There are thives among us.

  5. avatar

    America is NOT what it used to be ! This is theyre attemp to weed out the middle class ! Working in the construction industry, I see whole trades, ( like sheetrockers) changing from white, And black workers making a average of 20 dollars per hour to hispanics, who speak little to NO english, And will work like a dog, With no benifits, No overtime pay, And will work long hours, For 10 dollars per hour !? This is why they are working , And we, Us 22 million or more are NOT !

  6. avatar

    Mr. Bush made millions of dollars feeding of the legal tax payers and doesn’t have to compete for a job. We have 23 million unemployed and his solution is to grant 20 million illegal’s amnesty to compete for un- existing jobs. Typical politician thinking.

  7. avatar

    We currently have around 22 million Americans out of work; wages have been stagnant for the last 30 years… and we need milions of new immigrants?! There are more than enough people in this country already; this lie has to stop!

  8. avatar

    From what I’ve read, our birthrate has fallen below replacement level recently BECAUSE OF IMMIGRATION. When Americans are worried about jobs and being able to support their kids, they tend to have fewer kids. This is affecting even IMMIGRANTS and illegal aliens, although their birthrates are still higher than that of Americans. The logical conclusion–reduce immigration to improve employment prospects for Americans.

    • avatar

      You Have a Point

      IMO, its probably the only good thing they did; caused a Depression [that’s still going on FULL STEAM AHEAD] that retricted family growth. I’d add though, its mainly their numbers [recent immigrants] that stop having the babies; the legal citizen Baby Boomers were at our current depopulating1.7 birthrate before the GLUT of overpopulation came to America.

      During the last 1930s Depression America stopped having babies too, there weren’t jobs then too.

  9. avatar

    Retiring boomers won’t require so many younger workers to sustain them. More than enough robots will be available to do the job.

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  11. avatar

    To address the needs of retiring baby boomers through immigration is so idiotic that it is hard to believe that any serious person truly believes it makes sense–it has to be just another excuse for people who are already open borders to begin with. Look at the insane things Bushies are saying. Carlos Gutierrez keeps repeating that the economy *cannot grow* without immigration. Mark Krikorian debunked that whopper but just think what a huge, insulting lie that is. Jeb Bush’s way to grow the economy is–you guessed it–population growth via–guess what–even higher immigration.

  12. avatar

    Depopulation Is Good For Economy

    At 200,000,0000 America made almost everything in the house and the car in driveway too.

    Its the other way around, there’s not enough work to do today. And we need more people…LOL

    Social Security does not need more younger workers to pay for it, the recipients today paid in more than they’ll draw out….even the Boomers.

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      What makes more sense would be for companies to stop moving their production to other countries with cheap labor and come back home. I remember when NAFTA was first put into place and how excited a friend of mine was that he could move his golf club making company to Mexico to pay cheap wages. What a joke. I agree we definitely don’t need more people to solve our problems. We do need a responsible government that cares about the American people and their problems, not to just care about more votes and more money to steal from Social Security. The recipients did indeed pay in enough to have more than enough money to collect from. Unfortunetly the politicians thought they needed it more so they could add pork to every bill that passes both the SEnate and Congressional floors for vote.

  13. avatar

    One of the problems is that these young foreign workers bring their elderly parents into the country. So it’s really a wash.