Immigration Debate Flaring Up Again

Don Boudreaux’s column in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review has restarted some of the libertarian immigration debate over at the LRC blog. One of the more interesting posts comes from Ryan McMaken:

Yes, we’ve established that many libertarians, including Rothbard and Mises favored controls on immigration, but as far as I can see neither of them offered specific policies either. I can’t imagine Rothbard supporting REAL ID or greater punishments for business owners, so what’s the answer? Mises speaks vaguely of controlling the borders, but what does that mean exactly? And perhaps Mises was wrong? Mises wants to keep out fifth columnists as quoted by Stephan below. Fine. But how? How exactly does Mises propose that be done? National ID cards? Secret police? What? And if we think national ID cards and secret police are necessary for a functioning society, then why are we libertarians?

Unsurprisingly, No Treason is ahead of its time:

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.

Indeed. Controlling the borders of the state requires using force, potentially deadly force, against someone who is violating no one’s rights. Furthermore, McMaken is right: our rights will have to be violated in order to close the borders – more taxes, more programs, more agents. And of course, anyone here of Mexican descent becomes immediately suspect and ripe for harassment, both locally and federally.

So, what is the libertarian way to close the borders and enforce it?

14 thoughts on “Immigration Debate Flaring Up Again”

  1. Huzzah, a new post.

    And to answer your closing question, the libertarian way would be for every landowner along the border to disallow people entering their property from the south. I think it’s fairly clear that this wouldn’t happen, so the argument that immigration controls approximate a libertarian outcome is absurd.

  2. Yes, the libertarian way would be for individuals to manage their private property boundaries as they see fit. This would of course not have the desired result for the anti-immigration camp because American individuals don’t have any special interest in keeping Mexicans out. If I’m doing business on my property then of course I’m going to let paying customers in, regardless of their point of origin. Likewise I’ll let workers in.

    The real problem is the free riding that these immigrants do effectively on the backs of taxpayers, but the immigrants are not the offenders. The offenders are those who require the taxes of you.

    The anti-immigration camp is really saying Americans are powerless to deny state benefits to immigrants once they arrive. Even if that’s so, it remains the case that your problem isn’t with peaceful immigrants, it’s with violent domestic policy.

  3. The anti-immigration camp is really saying Americans are powerless to deny state benefits to immigrants once they arrive.

    They aren’t even saying that. I have yet to see an anti-immigration libertarian call for the deportation of Hans-Hermann Hoppe, even though he’s well known to be an immigrant receiving state benefits. What they’re saying is that they want the state to exclude a certain subclass of immigrants. This subclass happens to be (generally) brown and Catholic and poor and speak Spanish – but who’s keeping track?

  4. It’s sickening that someone should even *mention* Rothbard in that context. They don’t quote him. I, on the other hand, do…
    One note, I lifted a piece of (I believe) made up slang, Joe Boys, from William Gibson’s Neuromancer. He can sue me if he likes. It sounded just right when I wrote it.

  5. I have yet to see an anti-immigration libertarian call for the deportation of Hans-Hermann Hoppe, even though he’s well known to be an immigrant receiving state benefits.

    Lopez, you stupid spic! Why should any rational human being want to deport me? I am German, white, Aryan, Anglo-Saxon, English-speaking, pure. How can you put me in the same group as those filthy brown people who cross the Rio Grande in order to destroy our beautiful white country? Libertarianism does not apply to the third-worlders since they cannot handle it.

    In case you forgot, I am Herr Professor Doktor Ganz-German Goppe, Ph.D. I advance freedom and liberty on a daily basis through my holy work at UNLV and the LvMI. You taxpayers who pay my salary should be thankful that a saintly genius such as me is amongst you.


  6. Isn’t HHH’s chair privately-endowed?

    No, but what difference would that make? The fags and commies on this website would say that even if it were, it wouldn’t make any difference. UNLV still pays for my office, I drive to work on state roads, etc. They would point to my views on immigrants using public property to justify Lopez’s arguments. But don’t you see, RWW? They are all fags. That cock-sucking Tom G. Palmer probably sent them to attack me. I’ve had enough of you fag-sympathizers. It is beneath me to argue with you people. I usually only lecture to starry-eyed acolytes in the Mises University. They are smart enough not to ask any difficult questions. So, instead of demeaning myself by writing here, I’ll just pull on the leash of our resident kike Walter Block and he’ll come here to defend me. We taught him how to say “I disagree with Goppe on immigration but I think he’s the greatest man who has ever lived” and he’s doing a good job repeating it to anyone who’d listen. Hail Rockwell! Goppe out.

  7. I was asked by my good friend and personal idol Herr Professor Doktor Ganz-German Goppe, Ph.D., to go on this website and clear out some misunderstandings regarding Herr Professor Goppe\\\’s views. While I disagree with Herr Professor Goppe on immigration, I consider him to be, by far, the greatest man who has ever lived, and it pains me to see him so viciously attacked on this site. I assure you that Herr Professor Goppe\\\’s views on immigration are based on sound libertarian principles. To understand why, we must use Herr Professor Goppe\\\’s Argumentation Ethics (AE). The main tenets of AE are as follows:

    1. If you disagree with Herr Professor Goppe, then you\\\’re a fag (proof: Tom G. Palmer disagrees with Goppe, and he\\\’s a fag).

    2. If you are a fag, then you are wrong on everything (proof: Tom G. Palmer is a fag, and he is wrong on everything).

    3. Conclusion: if you disagree with Herr professor Goppe, then you are wrong.

    The AE theory is sound and foolproof. It is based on sound mathematical reasoning and logic, as demonstrated above. Please avoid disagreeing with Herr Professor Goppe again, otherwise he might take it out on me and not invite me to the next meeting of the Freedom and Property Society, and then what will I do? Spend my time teaching stupid undergrads about supply and demand? Or sit for lunch with Thomas DiLorenzo and hear about how Lincoln is responsible for the Great Depression, the genocide in Darfur, and the extinction of the spotted owl? No, please, not again!!!

  8. Dr. Hoppe, in your condition you’re still useful to science…did they tell you about our hobby of vivisection?

    No?…never mind. We only need your left arm.

    By the way, Stephan Kinsella gave us more material to work on than we bargained for…first him and now you!.


  9. lung meets hoppe

    “look, a childish primitive hispanic pinata or crude doll-like thing, obviously the product of an inferior AAAAGGHHHHH NO GET IT OFF ME SHRIEK HELP”

  10. Yes, Hoppe’s seat is privately funded…

    Whether it’s public or private money that keeps him off the streets, Hoppe advocates the state engaging in violence against peaceful individuals.

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