Open Challenge to Rockwell, Hoppe, Kinsella, And The LRA

There are certainly writers I like and respect at LRC and the Mises Institute and some of them may be questioning whether my song parody Lew Rockwell’s Army is fair. I’ll explain why I think it is.

My basic point is that preventing free immigration requires targeting peaceful individuals with deadly force. There is no other way to prevent what they oppose.

Those advocating such immigration control ought to be willing, in principle, to go down and patrol the Mexican border themselves and employ deadly force against a peaceful individual who wants to come mow my lawn.

So here’s the challenge, will you affirm this?

Yes, in principle I would be willing to personally shoot and kill that peaceful immigrant if that’s what it took to keep him from coming here to mow your lawn.

It takes deadly force to secure the borders. Remove that force and the borders are wide open. And if you advocate closed borders but you’re not willing in principle to employ that force yourself then clearly you are a chickenhawk on immigration.

My parody Lew Rockwell’s Army assumes that you’re not chickenhawks, since chickenhawks are despised at LRC.

So what’s not fair?

So far I have not seen Rockwell, Hoppe, Kinsella or any member of the LRA affirm that they would in principle personally be willing to do what it takes to prevent open immigration.

So who wants to be first out of the chickenhawk coop?

66 thoughts on “Open Challenge to Rockwell, Hoppe, Kinsella, And The LRA”

  1. Then let me be the first to flick on the lights, Hardman: it matters very much what someone who presumes to be a libertarian type thinks about immigration, if what they think is that immigrants ought to be coerced into on the other side of a line on a map.

  2. I would be willing to personally plant my share of landmines on the border. I would be willing to put on a suit, and bury my share of anthrax on the border, if that is what was asked of all those who supported the defense of the borders. Aggression on a security zone of this significance; it marks the line between war and peace, has to be responded to.

  3. If he is in an obvious hostile mode, then yes. If every citizen who supported restriction of immigration had to kill one invader who had taken up arms against the country, or be part of a firing squad of several hundred, then yes.

  4. Hoppe appears to regard immigration as some sort of synergistic theft of quasi-private goods, so his reasoning goes beyond the simple act of lawn mowing. Of course, I think he’s confused about who the actual thief is.

  5. Wouldn’t it be more effective to help ease the conditions that motivate people to emigrate to the U.S. to begin with? It seems to me that helping to create prosperity and opportunity around the world would go a long way toward easing immigration pressures in the U.S.

  6. Normally a fan of Kinsella, but I have to say you Spoonerites have been rather convincing. What is the point of legitimizing citizenship (of a state) when you don’t believe in the legitimacy of the state in the first place?

    Besides, even if you were okay with minimal, localized, gov’t (minarchism), I still don’t think the answer lies in being overly selective with one’s immigration policy relative to a poorer neighbor. Rather, a reduction in gov’t services, including land, available to the public would be more effective in reducing squatters and freeloaders, leaving only those who come to perform economically beneficial transactions. And in this case, the marginal productivity argument is devastating to a anti-immigrationist, since I don’t know any of that camp that wants to mow my lawn or cook my tacos for as little money as I can negotiate to pay Mexicans that I transact with daily. Less state intervention on the border benefits my pocketbook in two ways, since I am no longer financing state aggression, which in turn imposes higher costs on immigrant labor.

    Similarly, I find that the argument that allowing more immigration will destroy the ‘cultural integrity’ of an area to be unconvincing. People with the self-reliance to brave an unfriendly culture for the chance of greater income in a future period are rarely the frivolous types. I remember reading a survey that estimated that the average time for a Hispanic family to become completely culturally integrated in their American surroundings was three generations, with the first and second having generally better work ethic than the third, only when they are Americanized does their work ethic disappear. What I’m trying to get at is that the State is far more destructive to the positive traits of a culture than any immigrant could ever be.

    Finally, let it be said that ‘culture’ is a mere concept, not a piece of property to be owned, and one of the more odious arguments for State aggression. I may disapprove of this or that societal trait, and be very vocal about it, and use all my fiduciary resources to attempt to restrict the market options (through competition) available to those I find distasteful. In the end, however, State aggression against the peaceful is illegitimate, no matter what language they speak or what pigment affects their skin, and I would have no part in it.

  7. I didn’t know these were some of the ways the folks at democratic underground regarded this site…

    run, don’t walk from that site. there is nothing good to find there.

    Seem to be a fair amount of Ayn Rand ‘bots there. What I love about them is their humanity and their realism. LOL!

    Geez. I wish these……people would tell us whether they are Libertarians or Conservatives. It’s just so damn hard to tell the difference anymore.

    Not bad for creepy creeps who only support not paying taxes when it’s the other party holding office…

  8. Democratic Undergroud, despite every pronunciation on No-Treason front page to the contrary, has chosen to cherry pick one xenophobic comment left by a random person as evidence of the overall tenor of the site. This DU does to a site whose editor is extremely tolerant of even the most vehement tirades left by visitors, when DU themselves are relentlessly vigorous at removing anything that smacks of dissenting opinion from their own. These are not people to be taken seriously, as the erudite Sabotta has pointed out several times now.

  9. Regarding the “Ayn Rand bots” comment, I wonder why this women chose this description. Did she base it on my “peppering”, or did she independently arrive at the same conclusion I did?

  10. “Did she base it on my “peppering”, or did she independently arrive at the same conclusion I did?”

    I don’t think you’ll get much mileage out of the “Great minds think alike” sctick on this one.

  11. I think Lopez and Sabotta should be unleashed on the DUers. Man, I’d love to see that. They wouldn’t know what hit them. Of course, they’d probably delete all your posts.

  12. . In that DU thread you can see the scorn and confusion in regards to those who view the rights of the individual to be axiomatic.

    You can see that here, too, whenever I talk about THE ONE WHO SHALL NOT BE NAMED.

    To be fair to the DU people, you can see the same circle-jerking over at FreeRepublic, ObjectivismOnline, and even LibertyForum. It’s a feature of any message board geared towards a single ideology (conservativism, Objectivism, and neo-nazism, respectively).

  13. Well, thought control *is* an integral part of Leftism, or collectivism in general. Random ideas infiltrating the ranks of the faithful will weaken solidarity of the hive-mind. In that DU thread you can see the scorn and confusion in regards to those who view the rights of the individual to be axiomatic. It’s an anathema because it rationally destroys the desired conclusion. One would expect individualists to have a wide range of opinions, arguments and conclusions. However, to a collectivist diversity of thought is incoherent noise suitable only for dismissal because it wields no unified political “power” in their minds.

  14. I’m wondering whether speaking of targeting immigrants with “deadly force” isn’t rather overstating what is required to limit immigration. Is there anyone who actually advocates a death sentence for illegal immigration? I understand that you might argue that deadly force is ultimately what lies behind all state regulation but as a matter of practice the police don’t usually shoot people for parking violations and it would be an outrage is they did.
    Does it change the tenor of the argument if we speak in terms of deportation rather than deadly force? Aren’t you employing an all-or-nothing rhetoric that portrays your position as more ethically persuasive than it is? If it’s a question of sending the “guy who wants to mow your lawn” back to his family rather than shooting him doesn’t that change the equation?
    I’m personally undecided on the issue and I’m open to arguments and you present some good ones but I find your rhetoric stark and manichaen to a degree that perturbs me and makes me suspicious.

  15. matt: I’m wondering whether speaking of targeting immigrants with “deadly force” isn’t rather overstating what is required to limit immigration.

    It is true that shooting a person and beating the crap out of them as a prelude to being kidnapped and deposited in Mexico are different activities–but there are two important points.

    1) Deadly force is potentially required anytime one tries to coerce another, and

    2) the moral difference is one of degree, not of kind. Both killing someone and kidnapping them are ways of infringing on their rights. And besides–do you think those guns the officers carry are just for show?

    Show me the magical “transport all brown-skinned immigrants instantaneously to their homes in mexico” button and a consequentialist might believe you. :)

  16. …because the persistent ones would just continue through the beatings and explusion. You’d still need aggressive force against nonaggressors to keep them from crossing the border. Another reason to disagree with Hoppe.

  17. “The DU’ers little hardwired brains would just pop if they saw me defending some racist’s right to hole up on top of a mountain and hate wetbacks.”

    That would be cool.

  18. Aaron G.: Democratic Undergroud, despite every pronunciation on No-Treason front page to the contrary, has chosen to cherry pick one xenophobic comment left by a random person as evidence of the overall tenor of the site.

    Ironically, I’ve stated in comments here before that White Seperatism is perfectly defensible. Hell, I’d applaud Hoppe if he just wanted to move somewhere where there weren’t any brown people.

    matt: I think Lopez and Sabotta should be unleashed on the DUers.

    The DU’ers little hardwired brains would just pop if they saw me defending some racist’s right to hole up on top of a mountain and hate wetbacks.

  19. Stefan: no problem

    John Lopez:

    “The DU’ers little hardwired brains would just pop if they saw me defending some racist’s right to hole up on top of a mountain and hate wetbacks.”

    That, or defending one’s right to resist theft via government taxation. Either one would do the trick.

  20. Ah, another 17-year-old demonstrating the fine art of Control+V. Brilliant! I’m convinced–against such a logical air-tight case, no argument can hope to prevail. I’m going to give up my evil “right-wing nazi” ways, vote a straight Democratic ticket and join the zombies over at DU. Yep. Where’s the Kool-Aid?

  21. FUCK BUSH AND RIGHT-WING NAZIS LIKE YOU!

    Yay!. Our first iNazi crawls out, sap in hand, to earn his reward.

    (A pity you didn’t leave his name up, JTK; a prize like this shouldn’t be so easy to discard as a Kerry medal.)

  22. FUCK BUSH AND RIGHT-WING NAZIS LIKE YOU!

    [The DUfus posted about 50 more iterations of this, but I think you get the point. – jtk]

  23. I just discovered this website today, and it has certainly given me a lot to think about. I’ll probably be spending weeks wading through all the links and thinking through all the logical implications of what I’ve read so far.

    Meanwhile, a few questions occurred to me that I hope are not too naive or haven’t been covered by someone elsewhere. Thinking on these matters is a new venture for me.

    Regarding the question: “Would you shoot the guy who wants to mow my lawn?” The first thought that occurred to me was: How is the guy who wants to mow your lawn getting to where your lawn is?

    I am going to infer that the mower must drive on a public road or traverse public property in some way. (If he were to walk across private property or if the lawn were adjacent to the mower’s country of origin, then there wouldn’t seem to be any controversy.) So the question more specifically becomes: Would you shoot the guy who wants to use a public road to come mow my lawn? Or more fundamentally: Do you see a problem in using deadly force to exclude people from property that has no clearly defined ownership?

    To think through this, I tried to imagine related problems one might have with roads: If I woke up this morning and there was a large chasm in the public road that prevented me from getting my car out of my driveway, would I go door to door through the city and forcibly extract wealth from my fellow citizens to pay for it? Well, no I wouldn’t. However, if I call upon the city to fix the road, is this my way of employing violence I’m too cowardly to personally perform? Am I a hypocrite for asking the city to use confiscated wealth to fix the road whilst advocating peaceful cooperation and nonaggression?

    I am either too dense or too unenlightened enough to perceive a clear answer to this, so I will continue to ponder these matters and pay heed to the postings in this forum.

  24. Juan: Ironically, I’ve stated in comments here before that White Seperatism is perfectly defensible. Hell, I’d applaud Hoppe if he just wanted to move somewhere where there weren’t any brown people.

    I wasn’t allowing for semantics in the last post. I’m aware of the difference between natural rights and moral preferences. Also, as much as I like the guy, does anyone else think Hoppe bears a slight resemblance to certain literary figures. Perhaps he truly would be happier living at the bottom of a cave, though at least it would explain his stance on Immigrant Hobbits.

  25. You may be stipulating a contradiction-in-terms, when the supposedly peaceful immigrant who wants to mow lawns, steps into a security zone, such as may be defended by landmines, or officials with guns. This is not unexpected, though, since a sovereign power which can prevent any government from existing within its territory, is also a government of sorts, and that would be a contradiction-in-terms. If a private landowner may bury landmines, or set man-traps, according to libertarianism, where is their moral basis for condemning others? If it is a matter of emotive unease with the possibility of an accidental death from lack of posting of danger areas ahead, how principled is that?

  26. The web is like a tea party.

    The table was a large one, but the three were all crowded together at one corner of it: “No room! No room!” they cried out when they saw Alice coming. “There’s PLENTY of room!” said Alice indignantly, and she sat down in a large arm-chair at one end of the table.

    “Have some wine,” the March Hare said in an encouraging tone.

    Alice looked all round the table, but there was nothing on it but tea. “I don’t see any wine,” she remarked.

    “There isn’t any,” said the March Hare.

    “Then it wasn’t very civil of you to offer it,” said Alice angrily.

    “It wasn’t very civil of you to sit down without being invited,” said the March Hare.

    “I didn’t know it was YOUR table,” said Alice; “it’s laid for a great many more than three.”

    So simple, even a child can understand.

  27. If a private landowner may bury landmines, or set man-traps, according to libertarianism, where is their moral basis for condemning others?

    Wouldn’t setting land mines be kinda analogous to terrorism against innocent people? Who again is responsible for the most terror on the planet?

    Gov’t Goon: “Please step away Citizen Bolton, you’ve entered a security zone. Your behavior is warlike, and the government’s responsibility is to answer with force.”

  28. When they do that, the citizen does have to move. The libertarian private armies would do the same with their security zones, but being at war with other such armies, they would kill innocent people all the time. A government which posesses a monopoly on the use of retaliatory violence, is a model of moral purity, in comparison to two forces, neither of which has then and there secured such a monopoly.

  29. A government which posesses a monopoly on the use of retaliatory violence, is a model of moral purity, in comparison to two forces, neither of which has then and there secured such a monopoly.

    Is this an argument for one-world government in disguise?

    Gov’t Goon: “Please step away Citizen Bolton, you’ve entered a security zone. Your behavior is warlike, and the government’s responsibility is to answer with force.”

  30. Maybe Kinsella would like the following news story:

    Story

    [Guys, large raw URLs break the blog, you can use tinyurl.com if you can’t figure out how to code them – JTK]

  31. “DU would ban each of them within two posts, tops”

    Very true. According to their own message board rules conservative statists aren’t even allowed to post. I guess an anarchist is out of the question.

  32. We could start an office pool. See how long Beck, Sabotta, and Lopez could go undercover without going completely insane. We’d need video streaming so we can watch the smoke coming out of their ears.

  33. If a private landowner may bury landmines, or set man-traps, according to libertarianism, where is their moral basis for condemning others?

    Landowners have a right to secure their properties, as they see fit. Hoppe and Kinsella don’t own the border.

  34. One-worlders have a hundred wars to fight before they get anything like that. This monopoly means a local, not a global one, and the more affinity those within the borders of such polities have for each other, the less likely they are to approximate to the libertarian utopia of trying to maintain a permanent state of civil war.

  35. To be fair to the DU people, you can see the same circle-jerking over at FreeRepublic, ObjectivismOnline, and even LibertyForum. It’s a feature of any message board geared towards a single ideology (conservativism, Objectivism, and neo-nazism, respectively).

    If you actually think LF is ‘geared toward neo-nazism’, you haven’t read much there. There are tons of anti-semites, but they are matched in viciousness and number by the Zio-bot legions, while the real libertarians and an-caps mainly just ignore both sorry lots.

  36. The libertarian private armies would do the same with their security zones, but being at war with other such armies, they would kill innocent people all the time

    The iceland thing again?

    libertarian utopia of trying to maintain a permanent state of civil war.

    You’ve got some funny ideas about libertarians.

    Gov’t Goon: “Please step away Citizen Bolton, you’ve entered a security zone. Your behavior is warlike, and the government’s responsibility is to answer with force.”

  37. Potter,

    I haven’t spent much time over at LF in the last few months, and for good reason. I lurked there for the first year or so, and the vast majority of the posters were neo-nazis, white nationalists, conspiracy theorists, Larouchies, or other crazies. I only noticed two or three people willing to defend Israel even against the most absurd criticisms. And the occasional post by OWK and other authentic libertarians. The major flaw of LF is faith in a ratings system, and refusal to exercise much if any editorial discretion, which merely creates a vaccuum to be inhabited by StormFront wackos.

  38. Odd, I have a 50 rating, the highest possible and have never once been involved in a ‘Joo’ argument. And you’re right, few posters — other than FreeRepublic neo-con trolls — are willing to defend ‘Israel’. I’ve seen MANY — OWK, SonOfLiberty, Earth AD, Polchinello, thoughtcriminal, The Green Goblin, Madame Axe, LSJohn, Pete, Eric, Paravati, Wallace, gjenkins and myself — defend the Jewish people against ridiculous slander, conspiracy theory and insult on the grounds of refusing to fall for collective delusions. For this they are flamed as ‘Joo plants’, ‘ADL shills’, and ‘Zionazis’. When they turn around and defend the Arab people on those same grounds, here come the neo-cons screaming ‘Islamo-facist’ and ‘Nazi’!

    You are judging an entire forum on the behavior of it’s worst elements and dismissing it as ‘geared towards neo-nazism’.

    The above named people are actually the heart and soul of LF, and you will find them debating on a multitude of topics from literature to ancap theory to culture to history, science, religion. etc. that sprawl over dozens of pages and sometimes thousands of posts.

  39. Let me try it this way. The state owns property, but it obtained it illegitimately, e.g. by taxing us citizens. Therefore in reality, we are the owners, we are entitled to it. As restitution if nothing else. Therefore we citizens are entitled to demand that the state return the property to us; and as a second-best, to at least use the property as a trustee for us, i.e. use it as we want it used.

    Now suppose 99% of Americans would prefer that this public property that they are theoretically co-owners of NOT be used by immigrants. Maybe 1% — the open borders extremists — would consent to the property’s use by immigrants.

    Given this, what should the trustee do with our property? Yes yes, it should give it back. But barring this, shouldn’t it use the property in a way that 99% of them want, doesn’t that at least minimize the damage to them? How could you justify the state using it the way 1% want? If there is not unanimity, the only way for the state to decide is to go w/ the majority view. And clearly, most Americans are opposed to open borders. So tehy don’t consent to the state allowing unlimited numbers of immigrants onto their (public) property.

    Therefore, the state is justified from p.o.v. of illegals in banning them from public property. Given this, how in the world is any immigrant going to *get* to private property of employers who want to hire them?

    GOTCHA!

  40. JTK: The state may morally do what individuals may morally do. But you know it would be immoral to do what you are proposing as an individual and you wouldn’t do it.

    I’m pretty convinced at this point that Kinsella is, if not a full-blown consequentialist, at least heavy on the pragmatism…if in the “meantime” before libertopia government coercion can yield some good results, Stephan should be all for them, especially the ones that fit with his prejudices.

  41. Stephan,

    By your argument you could justify any collectivist policy favored by a majority. “Sure government shouldn’t do anything, but as long as it exists shouldn’t it do what most people want?” All the basic collectivist arguments follow as long as you treat America as collective property.

    The state may morally do what individuals may morally do. But you know it would be immoral to do what you are proposing as an individual and you wouldn’t do it.

  42. I wonder where you guys would be if “deadly force” had been used on your ancestors when coming to America. The thing that I find particularly laughable is how you veil bigotry and just plain nail-biting fear under a star spangled cloak of civic concern. Further proof that “Libertarians” are just another species of your garden variety right-wing nutcase.

    The idea of you being libertarians and showing concern for other people outside of your Hestonesque compounds is a little strange to me. Libertarians are the pinnacle of selfishness, in my experience.

    Since its your Blog, why not grow the nuts to just say “I just plain don’t like them brown folks coming into MY country.”

    The “illegal alien” idea is a convienient way for you to express your insecurities and nonsensical fears. It is also a convienient method for you to dehumanize people to support your own crackpot ideas.

    How much is being allotted to you brave American Heroes (TM) to build your Mexican Defense Shield along our once great nation’s southern border? 60 BILLION was it? Good plan! Now all you need is another 120 Billion to fill in the 1300 total mile gaps in it. They must call them “minutemen” because it takes about a minute to scribble down such brilliant ideas on a Denny’s napkin.

    I got an another idea you guys can lobby for… you should see if you can use your Super Patriot powers to have that icky French Statue torn down in New York Harbor. You know the one? It’s the one with the torch…

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