I'm assuming not.
But for some reason people get really strange when it comes to labor markets. Noah Smith and Adam Ozimek argue at The Atlantic that we should "grab HSI [high skilled immigrants] from India and Southeast Asia" through policies that they are not particularly concerned about the details of (they write "There are many ideas for increasing HSI, but is not our intent to single
out any one of these ideas as "the" solution to the problem. The most
important thing, we believe, is simply the outcome: what we need is a
much greater number of High-Skilled Immigrants moving to this country.")
We don't need to put our thumb on the scales of international labor markets by promoting one class of workers from one part of the world. We do need:
1. A more liberalized immigration policy in general that runs immigration as a social policy (to build new American families with stable roots) rather than labor policy, and
2. Stronger public investment in scientific research and infrastructure that will generate demand for highly skilled workers. The so called "market failures" are in these final product markets, not in the various factor markets associated with science and engineering (such as the labor market).
As I've said before on here, I'm all for windfalls and pursuing low-hanging rents. We did benefit from the European emigres (as Smith and Ozimek point out), and it's good we snatched up the Paperclip scientists and Soviet expatriates too. Windfalls are great. But we shouldn't make a policy of distorting the labor market without good reason, and "smart people are good for the economy" doesn't seem like a good economic argument to me.
Comparative advantage: a partial truth
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