Beck On Immigration

Billy Beck writes:

Milton Friedman (getting a lot of play here today) was entirely, simply, correct when he said, “You cannot simultaneously have free immigration and a welfare state.”

Following Beck’s link to VDARE we find the full quote:

Q: Dr. Friedman should the U.S.A. open its borders to all immigrants? What is your opinion on that?

A: Unfortunately no. You cannot simultaneously have free immigration and a welfare state.

Friedman is saying that as long as welfare state exists in America, as it clearly does today, individuals should be restrained from freely crossing the borders.

Beck:

As a general principle, I say, “The more, the merrier.” The thing that I insist on is that they come here to be Americans, like my great-grandfather did.

But what right does Beck have to insist anything of an individual for crossing a line on a map unless that line marks his personal property?

And what does it mean to “be Americans” anyway? Are Du Toit and McPhillips being Americans when they champion collective politics, or does Beck insist they leave?

33 thoughts on “Beck On Immigration”

  1. Beck says that you can’t have free immigration while there are elections. I’m curious what grounds he would use to exclude people. Does Beck want the thought police at the borders with the Libertarian Purity Test?

  2. And what does it mean to “be Americans” anyway?

    To swill beer, eat junk, read Cosmo, and watch Springer; to park in the handicapped space; to hate Wal-Mart (but shop there anyway); to elevate hypocrisy to an artform; to be unable to spell hypocrisy (hypocracy, anyone?); to worship idols; to despise those who worship the wrong idols; to go to church on Sunday and have a foursome on Monday; to have a victim mentality; to always be afraid of the bugaboo de jour; to not know who Edgar Allan Poe was, but know the exact shape of a drop of cum on Paris Hilton’s face; to be unable to find Canada on the map; to drive like crazy; to say like 40 times in each sentence; to have children you cannot afford, don’t care about, or won‘t raise; to blame society for all your problems; to never take responsibility; to major in women’s studies and think that makes you educated; to say I’m an independent thinker and then conform; to be irrational to the point of criminality… Boy, those immigrants have their work cut out for them!

  3. You cannot simultaneously have free immigration and a welfare state.

    Beck says that you can’t have free immigration while there are elections.

    Well, you can for a while.

  4. I don’t understand this argument for the anti-immigration position. When some governent intervention (the welfare state, inflation, state funded lung cancer treatment, etc) causes a problem, the solution is not to impose another intervention (immigration laws, price controls, cigarette taxes, etc). The solution is to do away with the prior intervention that caused the problem to begin with.

  5. But what right does Beck have to insist anything of an individual for crossing a line on a map unless that line marks his personal property?

    My guess is you’re reading too much into what he wrote.

  6. Josh,

    “Beck says that you can’t have free immigration while there are elections. I’m curious what grounds he would use to exclude people.”

    I expect that in practice he wouldn’t exclude anyone. And yet I think your reading that he would is reasonable, natural, and straightforward. It’s a difficult read. A conservative like Du Toit would read it and assume near complete agreement. But I don’t think there is fundamental agreement there.

  7. JTK,

    I don’t think he would, either, which is what made the post that much more odd. For his gruff demeanor, Beck is a fundamentally good man, and he would never join the LRA. He also has to know that immigration is really not the problem: 100 million goofs lined up to punch “Bush” or “Kerry” just two years ago, and few of them were immigrants. Moreover, logically, he would have to licence breeding, as per Callahan’s “They’re Coming to America”.

    None of this is Beck at all.

  8. BTW, I’d never actually poked around V-DARE before. It’s hilarious. The current front page article by Joe Guzzardi (a fine Anglo-Saxon name) basically reads:

    * Pew Research did a study which contradicts my beliefs.

    * Let me respond by describing the twenty people in my ESL class.

    * Holy fuck! They’re looking for work!

    I can’t imagine anyone taking this crap seriously.

  9. Josh,

    None of this is Beck at all.

    And yet it is. I’ve noticed that Beck has a weakness for Republicans, and sometimes he tempers his arugments to pander to their prejudices. In this case, you’ll note how he doesn’t explicitly condemn the welfare state and those who support it, rather he just endorses Friedman’s statement as written and moves along, dropping a remark about “Americans” along the way.

    The problem is that if he condemns the welfare state and those who support it outright, he necessarily condemns border guards, the military, and the Publicly-Funded War On Terror, all of which are organs of the welfare state that Republicans hold dear.

    This is all somewhat speculative, but I think it makes sense. If you look behind that link above, you’ll see that the Republican types that Beck cozies up to are clearly indicating that they’d be willing to cut him up to fuel the Terror War, but who does he direct his outrage at? Kennedy. And why? Because K is pointing out unpleasant facts about Beck’s relationship with Republicans.

    Beck won’t join the LRA, but he’ll let his rhetorical sights drift past them without pulling the metaphorical trigger.

  10. John,

    I’ve noticed that Beck has a weakness for Republicans, and sometimes he tempers his arguments to pander to their prejudices.

    I’ve known Billy for about a dozen years and during that time he’s been in and out of love with the right wing. Conservatives lure and disappoint him on a regular basis. The break-ups are sometimes rancorous, but he inevitably gets around to splashing back on the Aqua Velva and goes a courting the conservative floosie all over again. They make nice for a time, ignoring or even concealing their fundamental differences and emphasizing their common affinities until the facades develop a few hairline cracks then it’s heartbreak again. For awhile. Then the cycle starts anew. I don’t think he’s ever going to break free of it.

  11. Josh,

    None of this is Beck at all.

    He wrote, “You cannot have free immigration under the conditions that give rise to the welfare state, and that means electoral politics. These people [the folks at qando.com] and all like them will be trampled underfoot at the polls.”

    You can’t blame Beck’s conservative readers for taking the above sentence literally. To them that means that Beck, like Friedman, opposes free immigration as long as the welfare state exists. In back channel communications, however, Billy probably would tell you that’s not what he means. That way he keeps it real behind the lines with his libertarian homeys, while still satisfying his persnickety and vehemently anti-immigrationist conservative constituency.

    It’s a tough balance to strike sometimes. Kind of like when your girlfriend doesn’t like your friends, but you still want them to come over and watch Monday Night Football. That puts you on the horns of dilemma. Do you tell your girlfriend to pack sand and risk alienating her affections? You might, but Beck won’t because, for some reason, he craves the conservative validation.

  12. Sabotta aka “me” wrote:

    Ouch.

    I’m not here to lob insults at Beck. My comment is an observation based on my long term experience with him which accurately explains many of his inconsistencies.

  13. I am not and never have been been “me” and I did not write that last comment. I would suspect the invisible hand of one B. Horne, but, really, who cares?

    My attitude towards all of this is one of profound indifference.

  14. My attitude is levity mixed with vague indifference.

    “Profound” requires too much effort.

    I haven’t done any work in four months now, although I got paid almost $10K a month for it. My country is fucking joke now.

  15. “Kathleen does not like the photograph, I don’t wonder. For my part I consider it quite a jolly snap, but I don’t think we were any of us so lovely as we look in it, gazing blatently over the ripe cornfields, Skinny with his humorous expression, I secure in my difference from the rest, Kathleen with her head prettily perched on her hand, each reflecting fearlessly in the face of George’s camera the glory of the world, as if it would never pass.”

    THE PORTOBELLO ROAD, by Muriel Spark

  16. More silliness:

    Long-term hint: this+immigration=disaster+.

    Beck phrases the matter as if immigration and socialized medicine are both necessary for disaster. Seems to me that the equation works just fine with a zero substituted for “immigration”.

  17. Why do you pay so much attention to this loser? How can you take seriously a man who thinks that Catch-22 is a triviality and rubbish? Screw him.

  18. Socialized medicine only “works” for people who require subsidies. If you want to pop out kids you can’t afford, then sure: having it paid for at public expense makes a lot of sense. Not so much though if you actually make plans for the blessed event.

    Collectivism in general provides incentives for irrational behavior. Collectivist politics (Beck’s ‘cannibal pot’) tends to generate more collectivist policies. Add those two together and what you have is a self-accellerating mass irrationality generator. And absent external intervention, there’s only one way for that to end.

    Beck’s long-term “disaster” was in the cards from the very beginning.

  19. On Cavuto yesterday they were saying:

    Individual rights+terrorism =disaster+.

    That pretty much parallels Beck’s formula – it takes something moral and something immoral and gives them equal standing as contributing inputs to evil.

    And the conservative solution is obvious in either case: It’s so much easier to curtail the moral activity.

  20. Why do you pay so much attention to this loser? How can you take seriously a man who thinks that Catch-22 is a triviality and rubbish? Screw him.

    Look here:

    1.Beck is a friend of mine

    2. Fuck off

  21. I don’t know Beck personally; I judge him by what he writes:

    The thing that I insist on is that they come here to be Americans, like my great-grandfather did.

    That’s the essence of conservative stupidity and chauvinism, but that’s a redundancy.

    You guys are letting your personal feelings for him get in the way of clear thinking and honest criticism.

  22. I’ve been reading Beck for a long time. He’s not perfectly consistent, but neither am I, so I’m not going to hold it against him.

    Seriously, I don’t have a problem with honest criticism. I just have a problem with calling him a dumbass loser.

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