Let's do the math.
The US Mexico border is 1,969 miles. Stationing on average 4 guards per mile gives us 7,876 guards. 4 shifts to give us 24x7x365 coverage gives us 31,504 guards.
31,504 guards would give us 4 guards per mile of US Mexico border, 24x7x365.
Assume generously that each guard costs us $150,000 / yr for pay, benefits, equipment, logistics, training, and administration.
BOTTOM LINE: For a price of 4.75 billion USD per year we can have 1 well paid, well equipped guard stationed on average every 1/4 mile along the entire 1,969 miles of the US Mexico border.
No, that doesn't include facilities and infrastructure to support the operation, but building guard towers, barracks, and administrative buildings is one of the few things that the government excels at.
Like government make-work programs? This is among the best I can think of in terms of jobs created per $$$ because it puts real people on the ground doing what real people do best. Rather than giving billions to some contractor who will employ 1,000 people, we are CREATING 31,504 NEW JOBS, and they are good hard working outdoor jobs, in the service of our nation, that most Americans would be proud to do and to pay for.
Personally I would like to see open borders and see us eliminate the uneconomical policies that drive us to fight the free flow of people and ideas, but that's not going to happen, so let's secure the damn thing.