Before the United States began implementing stricter immigration laws, this land of opportunity was a prime destination for many ‘illegal’ immigrants. They came here looking for work, and they often found it in the dark corners of American factories, or in the fields of America’s farms. They filled a void by providing cheap labor to America’s businesses. And America thrived due to their contributions. But we cannot take it anymore.

The fact that people are willing to leave their home country in order to illegally enter ours, and with this being primarily a one-way train, should serve as a beacon to the world that America is the place to be. The land of opportunity is the final destination for roughly half a million illegal immigrants each year. Some come for work, some come for fun, and some come for welfare. In any event, they cannot be coming here, since we’ve quickly made our transition to the welfare capital of the world.

In a government run welfare society like the United States, it’s common knowledge that the takers cannot exceed the givers. If this were to happen, we’d be at a tipping point in which the system would no longer be solvent. It would simply collapse. To prevent this from happening, assuming that government was actually obliged to operate in the black, the government bureaucrats would need to ensure that their tax base is, at least, slightly larger than the welfare recipient base. However, this becomes incredibly hard when millions of undocumented people decide to jump onto the wagon instead of push it.

As the late, great economist Milton Friedman pointed out several decades ago, illegal immigration is actually very beneficial to a free market society, so long as there is no government funded welfare system in place that the illegal immigrants can take advantage of. You see, as long as these illegal aliens are migrating towards jobs in the States, it wouldn’t really matter that they are illegal. They would be filling jobs that various employers need filled at a lesser rate than an American might be willing to do the job. This is a win-win-win for the illegal immigrant, the employer and the American economy. The illegal immigrant gets a job, the employer gets cheap labor, and the American economy benefits from whatever good or service is produced since that product will have been produced cheaper, and in a greater quantity, which ultimately makes the product more affordable for the American public. Furthermore, the Americans that might be forced to occupy these less desirable jobs had the illegal aliens not taken them, can slip into higher paying, less ‘dirty’ jobs.

However, this free market and illegal immigration two-step cannot be appreciated in America due to our overburdened welfare state. Since we have welfare, what incentive do these illegal aliens have to get a job? It makes more sense for them to migrate towards the welfare dole. It is a general human characteristic to live at the expense of someone else whenever possible. Therefore, it is a wiser economical choice to pick welfare over a job. And that’s exactly what they do.

We’ve all heard about the massive amounts of taxpayer money that is spent on illegal immigrant healthcare in this country due to them using the emergency room as their primary doctor, so I won’t bore you with those absurd figures. However, they’ve found a new way to scam the taxpayer, and this pill is a little harder to swallow.

Illegal or not, every individual working in the United States is required to file a tax return. Many illegal immigrants obviously do not, as that might alert the authorities to their whereabouts. But alas, the Obama Administration doesn’t care, and actually encourages their illegality. So basically, the IRS has provided many illegal workers with individual taxpayer identification numbers (ITIN). These numbers allow them to file tax returns without a social security number. As if letting them stay here instead of deporting them wasn’t enough, they want tax returns. And they want big ones.

One of the coolest little quirks about having children is that you can claim them on your taxes and receive a tax credit! The going rate for the Additional Child Tax Credit is a respectable $1,000. Not too shabby. Even less shabby when you can claim 2 or 12 dependents, which these illegal workers have started to do. It has been reported that they’ve used the tax credit to “claim children living in Mexico as dependents.” In many cases, this can be 10 or 12 children when they tally up all of their nieces and nephews. What’s even more troubling is that since this $12,000 credit far exceeds their tax liability, they will get a big fat check from the IRS, funded entirely by you and I. $4.2 billion worth of checks.

We can have our welfare, but then we cannot have illegal immigration. We cannot simultaneously have both. Each destroys the other, yet we are dealing with a political party that wants both of these things. And they want massive amounts of both, despite the fact that it will destroy our country. I sometimes try and understand the liberal mindset, but I’m just not that ignorant. They whine and complain about the oil companies writing off $4 billion of their taxes each year, but they are entirely content with illegal aliens in our country collectively writing off $4 billion of their own taxes by deceptively claiming 12 nieces that don’t even live here.

The illegal aliens have broken federal law by entering the country illegally, and they continuously break federal law time and time again by exploiting the tax code. And how does the Obama Administration respond? Amnesty. It’s a slap in the face to those that went through the correct channels in order to secure their slice of the American dream. It’s a slap in the face to all of us taxpayers that will have to work a little harder in order to subsidize these massive tax refunds that our illegal alien counterparts have gotten so accustomed to. We can tolerate illegal immigration, but not when we offer them free hospital services and huge, illegal tax refunds. They paid their own way to get here, they can continue to pay their own way, or they need to leave.

Jeffrey Max | Texas Wesleyan University | @JeffreyMaxxx