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Illegal immigration stimulates the economy.

Debate Information

Position: For March 2018 Tournament | Round 1 - Debate 1

Debra AI Prediction

Predicted To Win

Details +

Debate Type: Traditional Debate

Voting Format: Casual Voting

Opponent: Dee

Rounds: 3

Time Per Round: 24 Hours Per Round

Voting Period: 24 Hours


Post Argument Now Debate Details +


  • Round 1 | Position: For
    someone234someone234 647 Pts   -   edited March 2018


    This is a debate agreed on between myself and StrangeQuarkMatter (I shall refer to him as 'Opp', meaning the side of opposition, from now on). The tournament host gave us a choice of five resolutions out of which we had to pick one where we both agreed we were on opposite sides and this was the one we chose together. Therefore, any abusive way of using the resolution and semantically winning via cunning is admirable conduct and a show of real skill because the resolution was agreed on by both sides beforehand making it the fault of the opponent for having picked such an unwinnable side on a corrupt resolution.

    Let's not kid around here, when we talk about illegal immigration it brings up a tingling in the spine. Those on the liberal side feel it just thinking of the inhumanity of punishing people for trying to escape the frying pan just to hop into the fire beneath. Those on the conservative side feel it because of the vermin that dare sneak their way into the nation, scavenge like the rats they are for jobs and to slowly infect and destroy the culture and integrity of the people as rats did the British during the Black Death's plague... Oh, what's that? The Black Plague was actualyl humans having no idea about hygiene and the rats were an easy scapegoat?[1] Oh what's that, a more rat-oriented theory is that it was the fleas on the rats and the rats were innocent?[2] Well, whether the rats were totally innocent or the flea-on-rat theory is true, we can surely say the rats are not sinister and are just trying to survive by scavenging near humans who throw away leftovers for them to eat.

    Illegal immigrants are not at all what Trump said them to be, sure a minority are but that's because they're humans and humans will always have such in their sample size:
     "When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best. They're not sending you. They're not sending you. They're sending people that have lots of problems, and they're bringing those problems with us[sic - he meant 'to us'][G1]. They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists. And some, I assume, are good people."
    - Donald Trump[3].

    Let's not be confused here, Donald Trump said that and was completely incorrect in his ordering of things. What he should have said, to be correct is the following:

    "When Mexico unintentionally lets some of their people escape, they're not sending their worst. They're pretty much sending you. They're sending good people that may have problems, and they're bringing those problems to us. They're bringing cheap labour. They're bringing tax evasion to escape the wrath of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) under the rule of politicians like me. And some, I assume, are drug dealers and rapists."
    - A man/woman worth voting for. Oh wait, she was there and you didn't vote for her.

    Anyway, my bias aside, let's get on with the debate!


    Please do note, I am not abusing sources here by providing them for my definitions, it's not my fault that Debra AI doesn't know how to properly count and frankly you should also know that Debra AI alters her stats in the 'overall' scoreboard at the top when you vote (she assumes your votes are 'for' or 'against' alternating between the sides per vote which always ends us at 50% win chance by the fourth vote because she's liquidated her scoring).

    This sources will not be part of my 'Sources' section and I will paste the URLs raw here for you to click and follow.

    To be 'illegal' is to be disallowed by law.

    The term 'illegal' should not be misconstrued to be the term 'immoral' for this entire debate unless Opp can prove the laws regarding immigration to be rooted in morality.

    The term 'immigration' refers to an act or instance of immigratingspecifically : travel into a country for the purpose of permanent residence there.

    The definition, in the context of this debate, must be extended to:
    The large-scale act or instance of immigratingspecifically : travel into a country for the purpose of permanent residence there.

    The reason being that this debate cannot and most certainly should not be won by Opp pointing out that one individual alone illegally immigration is hardly stimulating the economy, as a whole.

    Also note that migration and emigration are not immigration; migration is both emigration and immigration.

    The verb 'stimulate' has many definitions, some scientific and others political. This is a political debate and in the specific context that it is used here, it undeniably should be defined as:

    To 'stimulate' is to encourage something to grow, develop, and/or become active.

    The specific context that the source I provided (Cambridge Dictionary) defines 'stimulate' within is:
    'The government plans to cut taxes in order to stimulate the economy.'

    Therefore, this context is irrefutably the correct one of the many 'stimulate' definitions that there are out there.

    While at first it may seem pedantic to define 'the', the phrase 'the economy' is usually used when you have already provided one nation or one region in which the economy is to be analysed. Since 'the economy' is used here lacking a region of reference, I would like to make sure that the term 'the' is understood to be the term 'an'.

    I did not write this resolution, it was the best of the five choices that Opp and I agreed on.
     So, if I had had a say in it, I'd have demanded 'the' to be written as 'an'. The debate here is whether immigrating to a country stimulates its economy, it is therefore wrong to case-study one nation such as USA and to conclude that USA being relatively unstimulated proves that in a vast majority of occurrences it stimulates. The resolution also lacks the term 'always' and so proving it reliably does it most times is the key to winning this debate for Prop whereas proving that it fails to do it most times is the key to winning the debate for Opp.

    If Opp wishes to hold Prop to the term 'the'
     they must then explain why 'the' can't refer to the world economy as a whole, in this case I will happily prove that the overall world economy gets stimulated by illegal immigration occurring.

    The term 'the' is to be understood as the term 'an' in this debate's resolution. The term 'an'  is used instead of "a' when the following word begins with a vowel sound and the term 'a' is used used before a noun to refer to a single thing or person that has not been mentioned before, especially when you are not referring to a particular thing or person.

    The term 'economy' as in the process or system of of trade and industry by which the wealth of a country is made and used, is not the definition that applies in this debate. The reason that it isn't the applicable definition is because you can't measure a system, you can only measure its output and input but not the system itself and so to conclude whether or not it is being stimulated relies on you analysing something other than the system itself. Resultanty, I request the following definition to be applied to this debate:

    An/the 'economy' is the state of a country or region in terms of the production and consumption of goods and services and the supply of money.

    Introduction to Prop's Arguments

    C = Contention

    C1: More people fighting over jobs increases the reliability, via sample size, with which businesses and/or clients can judge the proficiency of the potential employee and/or provider of good/service respectively.[G2] 
    C2: Illegal Immigration is economically as, if not more, stimulating as legal immigration and legal immigration is legal exactly because of this reason.
    C3: Illegal Immigrants have more to lose than legal ones if they displease their boss and/or client no matter what their profession is, thus increasing the odds of them performing well.
    C4: The catching of Illegal Immigrants, while fundamentally state-funded winds up being a process that at worst puts public service to use and at best gets the private sector of law stimulated.

    Main Body of Prop's Round 1 Debate

    I won't split this into sections, each applying to one contention, because I feel that the interconnected nature of the contentions makes them really four very different aspects of the simple notion that illegal immigration, without a shadow of a doubt, stimulates an economy almost every time that it occurs.

    Immigrants, whether legal or not, are extremely frequently accused of 'stealing jobs' from the locals and this angle is one that any side standing against easy flow of immigration uses in its propaganda from the Brexit crew to Trump.[4][5] This propaganda tool is actually not lying, this is genuinely what happens and even the most liberal of liberals doesn't deny that. Let's first note that illegal immigrants are even superior to legal immigrants in their willingness to work for low wages because they can't risk you exposing them and getting caught as well as being more willing to work paid cash-in-hand and turn a blind eye if it's below legal minimum wage for their age group.[6][7] While this does increase overall unemployment rates (which I'm certain Opp will prove for me), it is totally irrelevant to this debate because the increased unemployment is nothing to do with the stagnation of the economy and it has absolutely no net result of preventing the economy being stimulated. Even if these people end up on welfare and and equivalent of Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) which is a UK unemployed-specific welfare allowance, they still did not stop the economy getting stimulated but instead simply stopped the stimulation having a high retention of profit.[G3] If more people are fighting over the same job battling to get the same job for the worst wages/salaries and most proficiency per dollar paid in wage/salary, it stands to reason that the sample size for jobs ensures that businesses hiring employees and clients looking for a provider of goods or services are both going to have a higher extent of reliability in their judgement. 

    I will just explain the mathematics here for those more confused by the logic behind statistic and claims of higher reliability:[8]

    "The size of our sample dictates the amount of information we have and therefore, in part, determines our precision or level of confidence that we have in our sample estimates. An estimate always has an associated level of uncertainty, which depends upon the underlying variability of the data as well as the sample size. The more variable the population, the greater the uncertainty in our estimate. Similarly, the larger the sample size the more information we have and so our uncertainty reduces."
    - Sarah Marley, blogger at

    An illegal immigrant has more to lose if they displease a boss and/or client as instead of just getting a bad reference, they are going to be at risk of being totally exposed to USCIS or another nation's equivalent.[G4] This means that they are more likely to perform well in the job. This is simply a rule of psychology but I do not expect you to take my word for it. I shall go into that right now.

    To make the source-referencing easy to follow I will link to all three sources at once here and quote them one by one:[9][10][11]
    Note: I have consistently used British English in my own debate this entire Round but some of these sources use Americanised English and Debra AI may mark me down for the inconsistency.

    "The Great Recession, a Great Motivator

    Let's go back to 2008. The economy tanked. Productivity spiked. Why?

    There are two basic explanations: the "weakest link" explanation and the "motivation" explanation. When employers have to let people go, they start with the least productive workers -- the weakest links. That makes the remaining team more productive, right? Theoretically. But also, if you think every day is an audition to keep your job, you might be motivated to work harder.

    One explanation dramatically overshadows the other when accounting for our productivity boom in the bust, according to economists Edward P. Lazear Kathryn L. Shaw Christopher Stanton, the authors of a new paper "MAKING DO WITH LESS: WORKING HARDER DURING RECESSIONS." Actually, the answer is right there in the headline. Employers made do with less because people worked harder during the recession. Fully 85% of increase in productivity came from workers' "increased effort."

    Some pictures to hammer the point home. Here's their look at productivity per worker between December 2007 and July 2009, the official beginning and end of the Great Recession. The recession visibly increased measured effort.

    In particular, workers in states with high unemployment changes (BLUE LINE in the graph below) become more productive than workers in states with low unemployment changes (RED DASH line) --  a reversal of what you'd observe in 2006 during better times.

    In econo-speak: "an increase in the unemployment rate makes finding an alternative job more difficult, which reduces the relative cost of effort." In human: People worked harder in states where finding a job was harder, since they were totally freaked out about being unemployed. Fascinatingly, the economists found that the least productive workers had the highest gains in measured effort -- possibly because they felt the most scrutinized in areas with high unemployment."
    - Derek Thompson, business journalist at The Atlantic.

    "Here’s a look at some of the ways that being afraid can make people work harder.
    • Economy – The biggest reason fear works is because of the state of the economy around the world currently. Many people feel they’re lucky to have a job – any job. Even if they hate going to work, they take this as a part of life and something that must be done.

    • Other Workers – When people are fired for not working hard enough, it can have a big effect on how hard other people work. Once a culture of fear has invaded a workplace, it can be hard to disperse. And this can have long-lasting negative effects.

    • Fear of the Unknown – Not having a job in the current employment market can be a scary thing. When people with college degrees and many years of experience are having problems finding a job, people are more loathe to lose the job they have and face the unknown."

    John Elwood, blogger at

    "There are many things that motivate us. But the most powerful motivator of all is fear.

    Fear is a primal instinct that served us as cave dwellers and today.  It keeps us alive, because if we survive a bad experience, we never forget how to avoid it in the future.  Our most vivid memories are born in fear. Adrenaline etches them into our brains. "
    - Robert Evans Wilson Jr., blogger at Psychology Today.

    While fear is a brutal, unpleasant motivator it is definitely an economically stimulating one and that's all that is to be considered in this debate.

    When illegal immigrants are caught convicted and deported, at a pure default level the process may not be stimulating to the economy as it involved State-funded public sector police and lawyers and potentially a non-US nation's equivalent of the FBI but is that really an issue?[G5] If, at worst, they are putting to use public sector workers and at best, the prosecution lawyer or defence lawyer as well as private investigator is privately hired then isn't the economy respectively either having a trade-off put to good use or getting stimulated?

    Closing Statement

    In summary, I have proven from the angle of a business employing someone as well as a client hiring a provider of a good/service that the higher competition that illegal immigrants provide increases the reliability with which the best for the job can be hired. I have also explained how illegal immigrants have more to lose and proven that this directly causes them to work harder. Lastly, the actual catching and punishing of illegal immigrants puts the public sector to use at worst and stimulates the economy at best.

    Thank you for reading, illegal immigration stimulates the economy beyond a shadow of a doubt. Vote the proposition for this resolution.


    [1][sic]: The sic you see in quoted text marks a spelling or grammatical error. It means that the text was quoted verbatim, and the mistake it marks appears in the source. It’s actually a Latin word that means “so” or “thus”.
    [2] great skill, ability, and experience.
    [3] the benefit paid to help with living expenses while someone is unemployed but looking for work.
    [4] USCIS is the government agency that oversees lawful immigration to the United States.
    [5] The FBI stands for Federal Bureau of Investigation. “Federal” refers to the national government of the United States. “Bureau” is another word for department or division of government. 

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