Crackpot Fantasy:

One Billion Americans

Joe Guzzardi
4 min readOct 8, 2020

Glenn Beck, the well-known former Fox Network anchor, a self-professed conservative, and Blaze TV network owner, teamed up with ultra-liberal Matt Yglesias, the left-wing Vox editor to advocate for a U.S. population of 1 billion.

After an interview with Yglesias, who authored “One Billion Americans: the Case for Thinking Bigger,” Beck tweeted that a 1 billion population, triple of today’s 330 million, is a “noble goal” and “crucial” to keep China from overtaking America as the leading global power. Yglesias and Beck agree that the best way to add approximately 670 million new residents is through immigration.

The Beck/Yglesias concept is so mind-bogglingly outlandish that it barely merits a response. But since Beck and Yglesias represent Trojan Horses for globalist immigration expansionists, a counter is required. Delivered via Beck and Yglesias, expansionists’ sub rosa message to immigration restrictionists is that more people benefits America. Accordingly, Beck urges restrictionists to put jingoism aside, and instead welcome one and all.

But neither globalist puts forward an intelligent, tangible argument for how more people would actually play out on a practical, day-to-day level. No explanation was offered how the migrants would be selected, how they would arrive and at what pace would they come. Then, after the migrants reach America, how would they actually survive?

For his part, Beck repeated the tedious, insulting bon mot that immigrants work harder than “most Americans.” That is Beck’s opinion, factually unsubstantiated, and a direct slap in the fact to about 30 million unemployed Americans. But for the sake of meaningful discussion, Beck should explain where exactly the arriving immigrants would work.

COVID-19 has eliminated thousands of jobs, many of which will never return. Even the pre-COVID unemployment forecast was grim. In 2013, the Oxford Martin Programme on the Impacts of Future Technology found that at least half of all American jobs are vulnerable to computerization, a trend that’s well-underway in production labor and service industries. The jobs lost plus immigrants added equation means more cheap labor for the industries that may survive computerization, and severely depressed wages for Americans.

Assuming the immigrant labor issue could be resolved — a huge if — then follows the practical questions of where the new migrants would live, how they would transport themselves, how quickly new infrastructure could be built to accommodate them, and what post-migration America would look like. Despite the pandemic, building permits, housing starts and housing completions are moving briskly along. The nation’s highways are gridlocked nightmares, and the 1 billion Americans would live in a country unrecognizable from the one we inhabit today.

In her article, “The Flaw in the Statue of Liberty,” Karen Shragg laid out the compelling case to limit immigration to sensible, sustainable levels. Shragg wrote that more people make numerous negative environmental impacts regardless of their nationality. Since all people are consumers, Shragg said, their collective goal should be to consume less. But that’s unlikely as we all need water, energy, food, jobs and open land — all of which are in limited supply.

With an average multiplier of 3.1 persons per petitioner, chain migration would eventually grow the 670,000 new migrants into more than 2 million. The New York Times provided an excellent example of how chain migration functions as a population atomic bomb. In “One Face of Immigration in America is a Family Tree Rooted in Asia,” the Times reported that a young Indian engineer arrived in America at age 23, and settled in Nevada. Between the 1970s and the mid-1980s, he brought his wife, mother, five sisters and a brother to the U.S. from his native India. Eventually, his siblings sponsored their family members. Over three decades, more than 90 immigrants arrived in the U.S. who can link their presence back to one immigrant.

America needs thoughtful immigration laws that serve its citizens’ best interests, something that neither Beck nor Yglesias wants to promote. Immigration has already dramatically increased U.S. population. Between 1776 and 1965, immigration to the U.S. averaged 250,000 annually. But major legislative changes in 1950s, 1960s and 1990, sent immigration totals skyrocketing.

The Beck/Yglesias fantasy will never become reality. But more rational sounding yet dangerous proposals are routinely introduced in Congress. The latest is the 2,154 page Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act, the so-called HEROES Act, which offers amnesty, work permits and fast-track Green Cards to temporary visa holders and to illegal aliens. Knowing that few in Congress would read the lengthy bill, the HEROES sponsor, Nita Lowey (D-NY), made sure to bury the amnesty and work permit provisions on page 2,030. Obscure government is always immigration advocates’ stealth strategy.



Joe Guzzardi

Syndicated columnist Joe Guzzardi writes about American baseball history and immigration issues.