What a tough essay you've chosen to pick up! I'll try to decipher this bit for you:-
1) The illegal immigrant business has become either a) a business where the illegal immigrant is a product, and the final destination is the place where they will be put to use, or b) the final destination is a market, and the illegal immigrant is merely a product to be displayed (and no one cares what happens after that).
2) Obviously, the first business (a) is more profitable than (b), so ...
3) "The equilibrum of income between regions of the globe..." + "...fast approaching the RATIO OF LIFE: NO LIFE between the earth and the moon".= I assume that the RATIO OF LIFE: NO LIFE means this business is becoming a One or None situation, where winner takes all (i.e. you either can live on Earth, or die in space between Earth and the Moon). Maybe the author is also trying to explain how vast this gap is by using a outer space analogy.
4) As a result of this vast profit difference, business (a) is becoming more and more attractive than business (b).
Therefore, to summarise:
"In the past, there were two types of illegal immigrant smuggling, where the first kind is to drop illegal immigrants off at a destination and they work off their debt. The other is to just drop the illegal immigrants off, and leave them on their own. Since then, the world has changed, the situation can be compared to the ratio of LIFE vs NO LIFE- a zero sum game where winner takes all. As a result, the first type of business smuggling has become vastly more lucrative than the second type".
What do you think?