The case for green cards: America's got talent, but not nearly enough

In truth, America has a shortage of talent. Some 25% of American workers score in the top third globally on comparable international tests of academic skills, according to data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Forty-five percent score in the bottom third. There is approximately one high-scoring adult American for every two low-scorers. By comparison, Germany has a roughly equal number of high- and low-scorers—about a third of each—giving Germany almost twice as many high scorers per low scorer than America. Scandinavia has three times as many high scorers per low scorer as America. Japan has almost five times as many. The economic effects of this talent deficiency hurt low-skilled workers, who depend on high-skilled workers to design and manage competitive products and processes that employ them.