26 votes

Immigration reform is a red herring

While I vowed to myself that I would quit writing about politics, I cannot sit idly by as I witness fellow libertarians nibble on the devil's candy.

The deafening call to "secure the borders" is a red herring. How could one believe otherwise? When has the marble building occupiers of Washington DC had the best interests of the People in mind?

They are looking for popular support to push through their agenda. However, good luck getting Democrats to support immigration reform. On top of that, the GOP is beginning to wane in numbers - as the sun is beginning to set on the Baby Boomer generation. Who does that leave? Answer: Independents and libertarians. They want your support to militarize the borders.

How utterly brilliant and ironic. They must say - "Let's get those libertarians to help us push our agenda. What brown people do they hate? We'll use that."

Immigration is not the problem. Illegal immigrants aren't driving this country into the ground, but guess who is - the politicians. The very people who many of you are calling on for assistance are at the root of the problem.

Very few people cry and moan about immigration when the economy is in good shape, and people have jobs. Unfortunately, in collusion with the Federal Reserve, the US Central Government has taken a healthy dump on the economy by recklessly pumping bubbles to line the pockets of their cronies - and continue to do so. If the economy recovered, immigration would once again become a minor issue.

Militarizing the borders is not going to improve the economy. As a matter of fact, it will damage the economy even further. Who do you suppose would pay for those walls to be built, the sentry towers, the barbed wire, the military checkpoints, the helicopters, the unmanned drones, the Humvees, the arms and ammunition, and all the other goodies that they'll likely deploy along the border if they get their wish? You will pay for it.

Sounds like a libertarian idea to me.[\sarcasm]

What's even worse, by advocating a militarized border, not only are you spending your money to suit your fancy, you're also using force to get other people to fund your futile desires. Should I be forced to pay to put a cage around the nation when I disagree?

The State will fix the border in much the same fashion they fixed the health-care system. Expect the worst.

If you've so far failed to discover how the State operates, first, they make enough people think they need it. Then, they force everyone to pay for it. And ultimately, they use the "it" to benefit themselves and screw everyone else.

However, go back to sleep my sheep, the State has everything under control. Surely, this border thing is different.

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baby boo.

Your response is a rebuke of the welfare state...

not immigration.


You can support social security, for example. It is funded by the payroll taxes of people who work, legally, and receive income sufficient to live comfortably and contribute to pensions and taxes.

This does not oblige you to support open borders, where people break the law, work for dimes and live off public services without contributing, so that rich people don't have to pay living wages for menial work, and so the state gets pliable barely literate new voters.

Stop your support for easily controlled slave labor and political pawns, and for violating the desires of the property owners who pay for and fund the public spaces and roads being invaded.

You have to have a Social Security number to get...

Social Security. On a side note, I've paid into Social Security quite a bit since I first started working, but I seriously doubt I will ever recover any of those funds. The State has squandered the money. More precisely, the time I worked to pay that money in was a waste of my life that I will likely never recover.

How do you propose the State secure the border?

no round-ups required

No border is totally secure but improvements can be made. Bring our troops home from Afghanistan, for instance, and have them defend this country for a change.

Severe fines on the employers of illegal aliens would probably do as much good. They break laws and cheat to be more profitable than their competition. If these cheating employers spent enough time in prison and were fined enough, they might take more of an interest in hiring citizens. That would drastically reduce the demand for illegal aliens and many would find their way back home; no round-ups required.

So, you do want to militarize the borders?

How do you suppose that would affect the everyday lives of people who live along the border?

You've made a false connection

I didn't say illegals collect social security. I don't know if they do. I said they live off public services.

I said that a person could be in favor of social security without supporting illegal immigration. A person could support some level of social welfare without supporting open borders.

You implied that my comment was merely rebuking entitlements and not about immigration. I disagree. Sweden is a welfare state. That doesn't mean Sweden needs genital mutilating illiterates sucking off the public teet and parasiting on social capital paid in by citizens.

Immigrants are a small fraction of the total dollar amount

burden of the welfare state. You could save 20 to 50 times as much federal money eliminating the entire welfare state over simply eliminating benefits for "illegals." It is amazing the mental hoops welfare statists will go through to try to prop up their desired system.

I don't want to make the welfare state "work." The more quickly it is brought down, the better. I want a free market. And I don't want a police/military state asking me for my papers.

your comment is a red herring

the local property owners don't want the invasion. maybe they do want some social welfare or hospitals. not for you to judge. what you support is the establishment overclass 1,000 miles away using force to prevent people from defending their own property and roads.

Let people defend their property...

Like I said above, just quit running to the State.

It's good to see you retreat into a more defensible perimeter

Anyway, the state is the only thing preventing border enforcement.

Cyril's picture

^^^ BUMP

^^^ BUMP

"Cyril" pronounced "see real". I code stuff.


"To study and not think is a waste. To think and not study is dangerous." -- Confucius

In my days as a construction worker, Billy...

I worked with plenty of Hispanic people. Who knows, some may have even been illegal. They weren't sucking off the "public teet."

More so, I believe the drug war has lead to the outrageous numbers of people sucking off the "public teet" - that in conjunction with the mere existence of the welfare system (Social Security or otherwise).

your anecdote

is a red herring. it's good that you're learning what red herring means.

You nailed it!

Asking the incompetent, violent State to help make any problem better is, as you say, "[nibbling] on the devil's candy."

Should the incompetent

, violent State cease and desist catching and prosecuting murderers while maintaining a legal monopoly on law enforcement? Don't certain activities of government have to be abolished in groups? Wouldn't it be better to decentralize law enforcement and then transition to a free market justice system?

"Should the incompetent

, violent State cease and desist catching and prosecuting murderers...?"

Rothbard would have said, "yes." In one of his strategy statements, he explicitly rejected the notion of endorsing any particular order of destatization. He opposed all coercive government laws, and believed anytime a law could be repealed, it should be, regardless of any other forms of tyranny existing in the system at the time.

Honestly I recommend for anarcho-capitalists to take their cue from Rothbard, not Hoppe. I do not respect Hoppe at all, and consider him to be somewhat of a crank. He uses "property rights" as a magic wand to justify his own prejudices, of which there are many, and expects the expression to disarm opponents, even though what he is proposing is not actually defense of property rights but rather defense of State power.

Murder is certainly a crime against humanity...

By the way, the State is the most heinous murderer in the history of Man. While murder would be something that would also be punished in a free market, I don't see the connection to someone crossing an imaginary border put in place by an entity that has no foundation of ownership?

Wouldn't trespassing also be something

that is against the law in a free society? While I, of course, oppose the idea of public property, the public property owned by the us gov't at least in theory belongs to the people of the US, and not to immigrants.

Suppose you were in a completely free society...

Would you use violence to keep people unknown to you from driving down the street in front of your home? Perhaps, you could live in a gated community, though.

Nonetheless, I doubt too many people would be pointing fingers at and repelling Mexicans from the towns/cities/settlements they happened to live in.

In any case, how do you propose the current State secure the border?

Your first point is true

and I wholeheartedly agree. However, my point is that you shouldn't reject the state doing something just because it is the state. If the state is involved and isn't going anywhere, I advocate decentralizing the decision making as far down the line as possible. 99+% of people support sanctions for murderers. This would be reflected in a free market justice system. A huge percentage of people want some kind of controls on immigration. Wouldn't the sentiments of those people also be reflected in a free-market private property society?

I suppose people that really wanted isolation...

could live in a gated community or form their own settlement away from "others" - whoever the "others" may be.

Experience suggests to me, however, that most people would never say a word to Hispanic folks and others they may assume to be an illegal immigrant. For instance, have you ever - or seen someone else - approach a complete stranger in public and accuse them of being a wetback, or the like? Even if so, it's certainly not a common occurrence. I just don't think it would all the sudden become prevalent in a free society.

Over time, humanity will likely tend towards more tolerance for "others" than less - likely with temporary setbacks along the way.


I guess as libertarians, we should probably try to control the sweet tooth.

I'd be interested to discuss this with potential disagreers...

Any thoughts?

Not from me...

I brought this up in my car pool last week. I agree. Immigration is at best a non-issue, at worst counterproductive.