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1 300 Million Americans and Counting Is Growth the Only Option? Joseph Chamie Director of Research Center for Migration Studies New York, NY 5 October.

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Presentation on theme: "1 300 Million Americans and Counting Is Growth the Only Option? Joseph Chamie Director of Research Center for Migration Studies New York, NY 5 October."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 300 Million Americans and Counting Is Growth the Only Option? Joseph Chamie Director of Research Center for Migration Studies New York, NY 5 October 2006 Symposium Population Resource Center National Press Club Washington, D.C.

2 2 Q: Is growth the only option? A: Absolutely not!

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4 4 When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. (U.S. Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776)

5 5 He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands. (U.S. Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776)

6 6 All our industries are thriving; the rate of interest is low; new railroads are being constructed; a vast immigration is increasing our population, capital, and labor; new enterprises in great number are in progress, and our commercial relations with other countries are improving. (Pres. Rutherford B. Hayes, December 6, 1880)

7 7 This is the only country in the world which experiences this constant and repeated rebirth. Other countries depend upon the multiplication of their own native people. This country is constantly drinking strength out of new sources by the voluntary association with it of great bodies of strong men and forward-looking women out of other lands. (Pres. Woodrow Wilson, May 10, 1915)

8 8 Shall we be a great nation? That is the question for the third century-and for the next 100 million Americans. …challenges that will confront us as we go from 200 million Americans to 300 million Americans-as we begin our third century of life in this land. They are mighty challenges that are hurled at us by the past and by the very swift march of progress in this country. (Pres. Lyndon B. Johnson, November 20, 1967)

9 9 (Stay tuned in). (Pres. George W. Bush, 2006)

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14 14 Americans Living and Ever Lived: Pop. 2,527,450 Births483,465,018 Immigrants72,105,369 Americans Ever Lived558,097,837 Living300,000,000 Deceased258,097,837 Proportion living today54%

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18 18 Public Opinion on Legal Immigration for Selected Countries, 1995

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24 24 U.S. Population Mid-Century (millions) 1. Fertility (1.85) & migration (0 million) 2. Fertility (2.10) & migration (1.1 million) 3. Fertility (2.35) & migration (1.1 million) 4. Fertility (2.35) & migration (1.5 million) Near 500

25 25 Population Decline, Growth, Stabilization Economics Power Politics Ethnicity Family values Cultural momentum Demographics Environment

26 26 Recognizing that our population cannot grow indefinitely, and appreciating the advantages of moving now toward the stabilization of population, the Commission recommends that the nation welcome and plan for a stabilized population. The nation has nothing to fear from a gradual approach to population stabilization.... From an economic point of view, a reduction in the rate of population growth would bring important benefits. (President's Commission on Population Growth and the American Future, 1972)

27 27 Growing populations demand more food, goods, services, and space. Where there is scarcity, population increase aggravates it." "After two years of concentrated effort, we have concluded that, in the long run, no substantial benefits will result from further growth of the Nation's population, rather that the gradual stabilization of our population would contribute significantly to the Nation's ability to solve its problems. (Select Commission on Immigration and Refugee Policy, 1981)

28 28 Goal 8: Population Move toward stabilization of U.S. population. There is nothing inherently wrong with a population -- even a large one -- meeting its material needs by consuming resources and creating wastes. Problems arise when the numbers of people and the scale, composition, and pattern of their consumption and waste generation combine to have negative effects on the environment, the economy, and society. Together, the size of the population and the scale of consumption impinge significantly on American society's ability to achieve sustainability. (President's Council on Sustainable Development, 1996)

29 29 Closing points 1. Fertility around replacement 2. Immigration major growth factor 3. US population ageing 4. Ill see you in 35 years, for … Symposium: 400 Million & Counting

30 30 Thank you!


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