Today's NYT magazine has a long, touching story on migration and remittances, focusing on the experience of the Philippines. While acknowledging the huge material gains migration generates, the article emphasizes the human costs--broken families, left-behind kids.
Off the sala is a guest bedroom with a large framed photograph of Rosalie, taken on her wedding day. The woman in that picture shows no trace of a birthright of poverty. She turns to the camera wearing an enormous gown and a confident face. Two generations of labor migration have given her more education, more money and more power and prestige than her mother could have dreamed of on her own wedding day. Precious Lara rarely plays in that room and hardly knows the face, much less the sacrifices her mother has made for the blessings of a migrant’s wage.
What the article makes clear to me is that we have not yet figured out how to make international labor mobility a true contributor to economic development.