The present immigration system is based on a core paradox. The method of allocating visas for the admission of permanent residents is based on principles of equality and fairness because all countries have the same quota. Yet visa demand varies widely. The principle of formal equality has disparate effects, being inclusionary for some and exclusionary for others. Four countries persistently max out on their caps—China, India, Mexico, and the Philippines—leading to long waits, easily ten to twenty years or more, and hence pressures for unlawful entry. The system generates an ever-larger caste-population of unauthorized immigrants.