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Water scarcity is altering the global economy and stranding billions of investor dollars
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Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering. Except for North Korea, all affected countries were Muslim-majority. In times of war and political crisis, a focus on markets and rights gives way to a concern about culture and security. This makes it difficult to build coalitions for reform. Christians and Jews are pitted against Muslims, and Mexicans and Hispanics are pitted against whites.
Symbolic and racial politics allow him to shore up elements of his political base, but the President has created a perfect storm of opposition to his policies at the international, national, state, and local levels. The battle over so-called sanctuary cities is raging in the courts, and 3.
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At the domestic level, the policy shift contributes to an environment of intolerance and intimidation in which hate crimes have been increasing. And at the international level the policies and racially charged remarks have alienated allies in the Muslim world, Latin America, and Africa.
International security and stability depend upon the capacity of states to manage migration. Powerful forces driving people to move make it hard for states alone to manage flows of people. The European Union EU has built a common market where labor can flow freely across borders. The EU model stands out because it is not based purely on homo economicus. It also incorporates rights for individual migrants and even a form of EU citizenship. Regional integration, especially when it has a long history and is as deeply institutionalized as in Europe, makes it easier for states to risk migration.
It also makes it easier for governments to construct the coalitions they need to support even greater openness. But even a regional system like the EU faces difficulties. Its flow of immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers becomes more pressing as the EU expands and borders are relaxed.
The EU system for managing refugees even buckled with the surge of asylum seekers in the last decade. While all these factors combine to make immigration reform difficult, pressures to modernize immigration systems are only going to mount. Growing demand for basic manpower and fierce competition for the highly-skilled worker, when coupled with a demographic decline in the receiving countries, have created economic opportunities for migrants. Family networks and kinship ties make it easier for people to move long distances by lowering the transaction costs.
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And when legal migration is not an option, some migrants have turned to professional smugglers, creating a global industry of migrant smuggling. In almost 4, migrants perished at sea while trying to enter the EU. The extension of rights to migrants also has become an important part of the immigration story.
If a migrant can establish some claim to residence in a liberal state, his or her chances of being able to remain and settle will increase. Witness Central American children arriving at the U. As well, developments in international human rights law have helped to solidify their rights.
Rick Foster, MD
And, once extended, rights are hard to roll back. How well powerful nations like the U. As states struggle to meet this challenge they must keep balancing security, economic, legal, and foreign policy interests. And they are likely to encounter a liberal paradox for decades to come.
What Makes Immigration Reform So Hard
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