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Ilya Somin on "Why a Nation Is Not Like a House"
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From the Washington Post:

Why a nation is not like a house or a club – and why the difference matters for debates over immigration
By Ilya Somin
August 6, 2017

If you follow debates over immigration, it is hard to avoid arguments for restrictionism that analogize a nation to a house or a club. Such claims are ubiquitous in public debate, and are sometimes advanced by professional political philosophers as well. The intuition behind these analogies is simple: As a homeowner, I generally have the right to exclude whoever I want from my property. I don’t even have to have a good justification for the exclusion. I can choose to bar you from my home for virtually any reason I want, or even just no reason at all. Similarly, a nation has the right to bar foreigners from its land for almost any reason it wants, or perhaps even for no reason at all. All it is doing is exercising its property rights, much like the homeowner who bars strangers from entering her house. In the words of a leading academic defender of this theory, “My right to freedom of movement does not entitle me to enter your house without your permission… so why think that this right gives me a valid claim to enter a foreign country without that country’s permission?”…

Many people find the house and club analogies to be intuitively appealing. But they quickly fall apart under scrutiny.

The house analogy appeals to the notion of property rights. But, as Georgetown political philosopher Jason Brennan points out, it actually ends up undermining private property rights rather than upholding them:

When we close borders, we aren’t doing the same thing as putting fences around our houses. Suppose there is a neighborhood made up of 10 landowners. 8 out of 10 of them vote to keep out all foreigners. 1 out of 10, Larry, votes to let them in because he wants to rent his house to them. 1 of them votes to let them in because he’s a decent human being, but he doesn’t himself plan to rent his house. When the 8 put up a fence around the neighborhood, they don’t merely keep immigrants off their own property. Rather, they keep the immigrants off Larry’s property, against his will.

Far from protecting property rights, immigration restrictions abrogate the rights of property owners who want to rent their property to the excluded migrants, associate with them, or employ them on their land. This is an interesting result, given that many immigration restrictionists are also conservatives who strongly support private property rights in other contexts.

Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements that restrict individual property owners’ right to do any damn thing he pleases with his property. Rich New Yorkers, for instance, often live in co-ops in which boards have veto power over to whom you can sell your apartment.

Similarly, countless housing developments are managed by Home Owners Associations. Say Larry’s house is one of ten houses in a fancy development where the ten get a vote on what is allowed. Larry wants to convert his garage into a bunkhouse for eighteen illegal aliens in six beds who will hotbunk in shifts. The other members of the HOA vote down Larry’s proposal. Larry’s property rights have been violated!

Moreover, Larry is a hereditary property owner. He inherited his house from his mom. So his hereditary property rights are being violated! (Note that in Somin’s Koch Brothers-subsidized mental universe, hereditary voting rights are bad, but hereditary wealth is very, very good.) Larry doesn’t even live in this development. He has an even better house somewhere else, so what does he care about how his hotbunk scheme would trash the neighborhood? It’s his property right to impose all the externalities he wants on his nominal neighbors.

In reality, property rights exist at multiple levels and people who don’t understand that are usually seen as cranks. Except when the topic is immigration.

Perhaps, however, the government is a kind of super-owner that has the right to supersede the decisions of private owners whenever it passes a law that does so. On that view, the state has all the same rights over land within its jurisdiction as a private owner has over his house. And when the two types of property rights conflict, the state prevails.

Restated in this way, the house analogy could indeed potentially justify almost any immigration restrictions a government might choose to set up. But it can also justify all kinds of repressive government policies that target natives, as well. If a state has the same powers over land within the national territory as a homeowner has over her house, then the state has broad power to suppress speech and religion the rulers disapprove of.

Well, the US has the First Amendment. But the Zeroth Amendment comes first.

In general, I’m struck by how it’s the custom to label anybody who thinks that immigration should be subject to common-sensical limits and regulations is considered a far-right extremist who must be excluded from the public square, while the craziest Koch Bros uber alles ideologues are treated as representatives of reasonable, respectable thinking.

 
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  1. donut says:

    Clickbait nitwit , make an effort .

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  2. donut says:

    Clickbait Negro , make an effort .

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  3. AndrewR says:

    I’m not sure what’s worse: Somin implying that advocates of immigration restriction are uniformly “not decent people”, or her[?] use of “whoever” as an object.

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    • LOL: ben tillman
    • Replies: @Father O'Hara
    Ilya is a man's name. Didn't you ever watch "The Man From UNCLE"?
    , @Achmed E. Newman
    Oops, Andrew, I'd read your comment way too quickly the first time. My beef was about the random "her" pronoun, so both of you, NEVER MIND! Father O'Hara's reply makes sense now.
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  4. Anonym says:

    I’m glad you mentioned that Ilya Somin is a Koch-head.

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    • Replies: @Olorin
    Or as a farmer of my acquaintance put it most memorably, "These GOPe turkeys are Koch gobblers."

    Budabump

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  5. newrouter says:
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  6. newrouter says:

    Good to see the “globalist” expose themselves.

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  7. Aren’t you ‘proving’ Somin wrong by using exceptions to the rule? The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.

    Also Somin is a libertarian, and libertarians minimize ‘externatlities’ in general (see pollution). Of course if you talk about ‘externalities’ a lot you might as well abolish private property period and join the DSA.

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.

    And the vast majority live under zoning, except in Houston, where HOAs are common.

    , @bomag

    The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.
     
    The vast majority of American homeowners live under a great number of building codes; regulations; and laws.

    Let's see how much sympathy Somin has for his neighbor who conducts live firing of heavy artillery; sells drugs; runs a brothel; and tells the IRS his house is 100% a business expense.
    , @Enochian

    The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.
     
    All the more reason for them to want their country to be treated like one. It's the ultra wealthy who live in gated communities and private compounds who can afford to treat the rest of the country like a garbage dump.
    , @ben tillman

    Aren’t you ‘proving’ Somin wrong by using exceptions to the rule? The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.
     
    Of course, not.

    What you are ignoring is that Somin jumped right past the comparison of a country to a home and moved on to a comparison of a country to a neighborhood. That's why Steve was addressing HOA's and co-ops.

    You have it exactly backward:

    1. The "rule" is that property means the right to exclude.
    2. Co-ops and HOA's are not better examples than simple households where the decision to exclude is almost always unanimous.
    , @ben tillman

    Also Somin is a libertarian, and libertarians minimize ‘externatlities’ in general (see pollution). Of course if you talk about ‘externalities’ a lot you might as well abolish private property period and join the DSA.
     
    Is there anything that imposes more negative externalities than immigration?

    The whole point of immigration is that it enables some people to seize their fellow countrymen's positive externalities for themselves.

    , @slumber_j
    In deploying the fence analogy, Somin ignores a fundamental thing about how real property works in our society.

    The default setting on whether or not someone can come on my land is, technically, "yes"--although mostly people don't actually behave that way. Both the owner of my land and non-owners of my land generally agree that anyone I don't explicitly invite onto it is excluded...in all but the strict legal sense.

    But by the simple addition of "No Trespassing" or "No Hunting" signs, I can easily flip that switch to a hard legal "no"--which is what plenty of people do all the time once non-owners of their property start violating the exclusionary social convention.

    I can always add a fence to make the exclusion even more firm. But I don't need a fence, and in practice people in the US don't much go in for that, because they're protected by laws.

    It doesn't take all that much philosophizing to recognize this--or to figure out how it might apply to, say, the US border with Mexico. By conflating individual and group rights, Somin blurs the picture. It feels intentional.

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  8. Anon[395] • Disclaimer says:

    There is no market for lolbertarianism.

    It requires the ongoing subsidy of its sugar daddy billionaires.

    Odds on the Koch Foundations going they way of the Rockefeller and Ford Foundations once the founder is gone???

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    • Replies: @notanon
    right - it was designed to manipulate a certain demographic who have since shifted to alt-right but unfortunately there is a market for the fusion of SJW ideas and neoliberal open borders so i expect most of the Koch brothers shills will transition into that.
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  9. For a fancy pants law professor at George Mason University, Professor Ilya Domin doesn’t seem to be all that bright, or even very well educated.

    P.S. Steve, it looks like there are some typos in your third paragraph.

    · than -> that

    · missing “does”

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Thanks.
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  10. Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements

    Oddly is the operative word here.

    I tried to find any evidence, but it looks like Ilyan Somin is not some sort of hypocrite pushing open borders for some alternative political agenda. Instead, like so many immigration experts on the Libertarian Right, Ilya Somin is your basic autistic sperg type who, while extremely intelligent, should not be allowed anywhere near a position of leadership or influence. He is exactly as you imagine he is. His theoretical premises are all fine in the abstract realm of theory, but completely deficient in real world practice.

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.

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    • Replies: @Clifford Brown
    The best part is when he gets up to leave at the end of the segment.

    I have to admit it, kind of hard to hate this guy.
    , @Svigor
    The test for this: do they give Israel a really, really hard time on the issue? That's what genius 'spergs would do. They'd (intellectually) go where the problem is, without regard for the social faux pas. Like Doctors Without Borders, who spend a lot more of their DWB time in places like Syria, and not so much on the French Riviera.

    Something tells me he doesn't. Just a hunch.

    , @Anonymous
    Ilyan Somin reminds me of Milton in the movie Office Space.



    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Vsayg_S4pJg
    , @Svigor
    "Those with the most experience with immigrants tend to be the most pro-immigration" yeah because the rest White Flighted their asses out of there. The ones who could afford it. The ones left tend to be idiocrats who like pro wrestling and telenovelas.
    , @Svigor
    He's not 'sperging, he's lying. Carlson caught him when he said we're bombarded from cradle to grave with the diversity and multicult sheisse. Twice Somin lied and asserted that the propaganda comes from all sides. It's a carefully-worded lie that's only technically true (one bullet from the north, one bullet from the east, one bullet from the west, and a hundred million bullets from the south is bullets "coming from all sides" too, but it's a lie). And yeah he looked like the Wicked Wizard of the East as he got up to leave. Snake.
    , @International Jew
    Ugh, I wish they could find someone smarter than Tucker Carlson.
    , @Buck Turgidson
    This guy from gmu is totally detached from the reality of immigration and cultural issues. All he knows is numbers on a spread sheet. He has his own open borders ideology and ill bet he does not live in pg county md. Why not? Its less expensive and crime there is just misunderstood by morons who dont look at spread sheets. These are the ppl running univs that cost parents $30-40k/yr.
    , @Achmed E. Newman

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.
     
    Not quite, Clifford. Your first clause is true. You're not gonna have any of this good stuff without having a population that understands it AND is honest enough to maintain a system of government that supports it all.

    However, these rights are natural human rights, as obvious as needing a place to piss and s__t. It's only through years and hard work of Commies/Socialists or hard-working Ed-school graduates (though I repeat myself) that one can beat the obviousness of property rights out of people. People must force their governments to respect the natural rights, not the other way around. The US Constitution is the best attempt ever by mankind, at it woulda worked too, if it hadn't been for those meddling Socialists!
    , @Achmed E. Newman
    Maybe that last post was nothing but a semantic correction, I don't know. I just watched this video last night and agree with you all on here about this guy. Especially the comparison to "Fire guy" on Office Space.
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  11. MBlanc46 says:

    The open borders folks will use any dodge they can to try to get round the fact that this is our country, which, through our representatives, we govern. It’s ours. We can run it any way we please. Regardless of how Mr Somin and his employer-class sponsors would like us to govern it.

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  12. Barnard says:

    Not to mention restrictions on businesses and where they can be located. Does Somin think a homeowner living across the street from an elementary school should be able to turn his house into a brothel? These people are not going to be persuaded. Is it simply social conditioning that has caused these crazy ideas to be treated as respectable?

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    • Replies: @Forbes
    In the Liber-turd-ian world, Somin and his ilk assumes everyone will be civil and well-behaved, such that what goes on in the brothel (or drug den, etc.) will be innocuous/invisible to outsiders--and none of the patrons' behaviors will spill out-of-doors. That "discretion" is their first, last, and middle name.

    That such a fiction regarding human conduct is believed, in contradiction to human experience, means Somin (and ilk) have been sampling too much of the weed they want legalized.

    Admittedly, I was once a fan of libertarianism, but other than small government advocacy, their approach to socio-cultural and economic human behavior is naivety itself.

    Yogi Berra's retort is appropriate: In theory, it works in practice, in practice, it doesn't.
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  13. istevefan says:

    1 out of 10, Larry, votes to let them in because he wants to rent his house to them. 1 of them votes to let them in because he’s a decent human being, but he doesn’t himself plan to rent his house. When the 8 put up a fence around the neighborhood, they don’t merely keep immigrants off their own property. Rather, they keep the immigrants off Larry’s property, against his will.

    Will Larry agree to pay for any damages his immigrant tenants do to the surrounding area or neighbors’ properties? Will Larry agree to cover his immigrant tenants’ debts and social costs if they become a public charge?

    Mentioned before I find it is quite odd that Americans are receiving the lion’s share of this effort to open up borders given the fact that America’s borders have been essentially open for the past 50 years. There is really no argument about this fact given we have had the largest migration of people in history over that time period. So much so that a nation that always thought of itself as white will be majority nonwhite in a two or three decades. My guess is we could double or triple our annual intake of immigrants and it still wouldn’t be enough for them.

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    • Replies: @bomag

    Will Larry agree to pay for any damages his immigrant tenants do to the surrounding area or neighbors’ properties? Will Larry agree to cover his immigrant tenants’ debts and social costs if they become a public charge?
     
    Somin and crew start with the premise that immigrants are good everywhere, all the time; and there is no limit to the resources available to succor them.

    Most people grok that there is a rather finite amount of good stuff: a finite amount of good people that make a place better; and more cars on the highway doesn't do much to improve my life.
    , @Rob McX

    Will Larry agree to cover his immigrant tenants’ debts and social costs if they become a public charge?
     
    In the libertarians' utopia, there will be no public assistance. The whole population of Bangladesh can come to America if they want, but they'll have to work for $3 an hour and no food stamps. If they want to supplement their income by scavenging in rubbish tips, that is their choice.
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  14. The house analogy appeals to the notion of property rights. But, as Georgetown political philosopher Jason Brennan points out, it actually ends up undermining private property rights rather than upholding them:

    There’s no such thing as “private property (rights)”. There’s just “property (rights)”.

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  15. @Clifford Brown

    Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements
     
    Oddly is the operative word here.

    I tried to find any evidence, but it looks like Ilyan Somin is not some sort of hypocrite pushing open borders for some alternative political agenda. Instead, like so many immigration experts on the Libertarian Right, Ilya Somin is your basic autistic sperg type who, while extremely intelligent, should not be allowed anywhere near a position of leadership or influence. He is exactly as you imagine he is. His theoretical premises are all fine in the abstract realm of theory, but completely deficient in real world practice.

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSbho1m07E0

    The best part is when he gets up to leave at the end of the segment.

    I have to admit it, kind of hard to hate this guy.

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  16. newrouter says:

    ” Ilya Somin”

    “They” have to go back!

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  17. In reality, property rights exist at multiple levels and people who don’t understand that are usually seen as cranks. Except when the topic is immigration.

    I’ve rarely detected this. Usually my perception is that people who don’t understand this are seen as : right-wing. Or libertarian. And it’s this peculiar blind spot that they jealously defend that ends up being the key they hand the devil to walk in the front door, wreak havoc, wreck the place and run off with all the goods.

    As far as I can tell the blindspot is impenetrable. So much so that – look, here we are!

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  18. ChrisZ says:

    Steve, the objections you’ve raised are so elementary that I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism. I’m sure the comment thread here will soon be filled with additional critiques.

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought. Even leftists gave it grudging admiration because it claimed to proceed from purely rational principle, and had apparently dispensed with the “God, blood, and soil” preoccupations of traditional conservatisms. Addressing the messiness of human social arrangements was always a limitation of Libertarian theory, but in a bind its adherents would retreat to the excuse that they were only offering “a partial philosophy” dealing with a discreet (i.e. non-messy) part of political-economic life. That alibi at least had the advantage of being honest.

    The immigration question, however, seems to have exposed the arrogance of Libertarian thinkers; their intoxication with those few precious ideas they believe they understand and can thereby apply to every circumstance. Reading Somin here, the tenor reminds me more of Freud or Marx than of Aristotle or J.S. Mill.

    To your earlier post involving Somin, I commented that his argument vindicated my sense that Libertarianism is an inhuman, and potentially dehumanizing, mode of thought. But here it really seems exposed as a mere cover for financial interest. That’s an enormous diminishment in intellectual status, and it makes me wonder whether Libertarianism ever truly existed as a separate philosophy of the right, or was merely a clever residue of Cold War Conservatism, which will not survive the re-aggregation of the old right and left coalitions we are currently witnessing.

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    • Replies: @ben tillman

    Steve, the objections you’ve raised are so elementary that I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism. I’m sure the comment thread here will soon be filled with additional critiques.

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought.
     
    Just say, "Hoppe".
    , @istevefan

    The immigration question, however, seems to have exposed the arrogance of Libertarian thinkers;...
     
    Not all libertarians are like this. Ilana Mercer, featured here at unz.com, considers herself a paleo-libertarian and she is very much against this lunacy on immigration.
    , @utu

    The term "libertarianism"is distasteful to people who think seriously about politics. Both Dr. F.A. Hayek and your servant have gone out of their way, from time to time, to declare that they refuse to be tagged with this label. Anyone much influenced by t h e thought of Edmund Burke and of Alexis de Tocqueville - as are both Professor Hayek and this commentator - sets his face against ideology; and libertarianism is a simplistic ideology, relished by one variety of the folk whom Jacob Burckhardt called "the terrible simplifiers." (Russell Kirk)
     

    Freedom: who could object? Yet this word is now used to justify a thousand forms of exploitation. Throughout the rightwing press and blogosphere, among thinktanks and governments, the word excuses every assault on the lives of the poor, every form of inequality and intrusion to which the 1% subject us. How did libertarianism, once a noble impulse, become synonymous with injustice? (George Monbiot)
     
    , @Thomas

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought.
     
    https://image.ibb.co/b3XOK8/libertarians_2012_vs_2017.jpg
    , @PhysicistDave
    ChrisZ wrote:

    I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism.
     
    There are quite obvious libertarian responses to Somin:

    1) Prospective immigrants want and need to use the public infrastructure (roads, etc.) built and paid for by ourselves and our ancestors. Surely, by libertarian standards, we who are currently citizens own that infrastructure, not prospective immigrants. And we are entitled to deny immigrants the use of this infrastructure which we own.

    2) Under our "democratic" political system, immigrants (or their children) eventually gain the right to participate in the legalized looting (taxation) of the productive members of our society. By libertarians standards, we are under no obligation to grant them that right.

    3) Under current anti-discrimination laws, we have to associate in certain ways with immigrants (especially from the Third World) whether we wish to or not. Again, this violates libertarian principles.

    An ideal libertarian world would handle immigration much the way Disney World does: i.e., no one is automatically free to "immigrate" to Disney World, though the management might be willing to work something out if you are willing to pay enough money and show you would behave yourself.

    But, of course, having your own personal suite at the Mickey Mouse Hotel does not give you the right to vote on taking money from others who are at Disney World and it certainly does not guarantee you the automatic right to "immigrate" to Universal Studios or Seaworld Orlando, even though they may be right down the road!

    Somin has actually not thought this through from a libertarian perspective.

    (N.B. I am far from the first to have made these points: as Ben Tillman notes, check out the work of H.-H. Hoppe for a leading libertarian who discusses all this in great detail.)

    , @Bill

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought. Even leftists gave it grudging admiration because it claimed to proceed from purely rational principle,
     
    That's because libertarianism is a species of leftist thought.
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  19. Svigor says:

    Somin wants to restrict property rights, by outlawing covenants, HOAs, etc. The less restrictive option is to allow neighborhoods (countries) to decide for themselves; use covenants, HOAs, etc., or don’t. The more restrictive option is to outlaw the practice and limit neighborhoods (countries) to one option: no covenants, HOAs, etc.

    Except he doesn’t, because one neighborhood (Israel) has a really restrictive covenant, and Somin probably isn’t going to call it out.

    But Jews have this thing where they think the goyim are stupid, so he packages his goal of selectively trampling property rights as universally protecting them, and hopes no one will notice.

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    • Replies: @notanon

    stupid
     
    genuine libertarians tend to be intelligent people with a compulsion to be morally consistent (at least in public)

    their weakness is that compulsion to be morally consistent - easily manipulated by people who don't share that trait.
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  20. @Almost Missouri
    For a fancy pants law professor at George Mason University, Professor Ilya Domin doesn't seem to be all that bright, or even very well educated.

    P.S. Steve, it looks like there are some typos in your third paragraph.

    · than -> that

    · missing "does"

    Thanks.

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  21. @anony-mouse
    Aren't you 'proving' Somin wrong by using exceptions to the rule? The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner's associations.

    Also Somin is a libertarian, and libertarians minimize 'externatlities' in general (see pollution). Of course if you talk about 'externalities' a lot you might as well abolish private property period and join the DSA.

    The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.

    And the vast majority live under zoning, except in Houston, where HOAs are common.

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    • Replies: @Jack Strocchi
    Right.

    National sovereignty is to the political as corporate governance is to the professional as
    Mom & Pop home ownership is to the personal.

    It’s a scaled up version of the joint property rights principle. Incomprehensible to the WaPo.

    The “vast majority” of Americans, and others who have a stake in Anglo jurisdictions, live in countries where the democratic nation state acts as agent for the principals - the native citizens - in the ownership and management of public assets eg commonwealth property

    This includes
    public space (parks, border areas)
    public businesses (US Mail) and
    public order (police, judicial army),
    public infrastructure (roads, bridges)
    public services (health education)

    Notice the common denominator?

    Elections are biennial shareholders meetings where the owners get to vote on competing management teams. Exactly as co-op members get to vote on the Body Corp9rate. With the proviso that all citizens have one, and only one, vote. Thus ensuring a basic egalitarianism in governance in accordance with utilitarianism - “each is to count for one, and none more than one”.

    All of this is elementary principal-agent theory that one learns as national civics 101. Yet it has been unlearned by media-academia apologists for globalism.
    , @M_Young
    The vast majority of new housing in immigration impacted SoCal is HOA, and has been for a couple of decades. In fact, I'll bet there is a correlation between prevalence of HOAs (and their uber cousins, gate-guarded communities) and immigrant presence.
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  22. newrouter says:

    stupid peeps like Ilya Somin need squatters at Their front door

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  23. Rob McX says:

    The open borders utopia would be an interesting place. People in gated communities would have the same right to exclude outsiders that was once exercised by the government on a national level. The rest of the population would live with the consequences of “the ending of hereditary citizenship”, trying to avoid the black and brown tide of invasion as best they could.

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    • Replies: @Daniel Williams

    The open borders utopia would be an interesting place. People in gated communities would have the same right to exclude outsiders that was once exercised by the government on a national level.
     
    This is one of the major premises in Neal Stephenson's excellent novel Snow Crash. Even if you're not a fan of science fiction, it's worth a read. The author does a great job of imagining how people might sort themselves into communities—some ethnic, some ideological, etc.—without being forced to use one currency or obey one nation's laws, despite living very close together.
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  24. Jason Brennan’s argument (that Ilya Somin mentions in that article) is far-reaching. He parodies what he refers to the ”it’s my house and I can put up a fence argument” with the analogy:

    I have a right as a white guy not to date black women if I don’t want to. Therefore, we have a right to pass a law saying white guys can’t date black women.

    The ”house” argument, then, would be saying, from what I understood, that ”I have a right as a property owner not to let strangers into my house if I don’t want to. Therefore, we have a right to pass a law saying property owners can’t let strangers into their houses”.

    One does have the right to bring strangers into their house, and one does have a right to date black women, but those rights are not universal in our society. Supposing I were a white guy, I cannot go to the drive-by theater, or netflix and chill, with an imprisoned black woman. Other laws take precedence over my right to date her. Or don’t they?

    He does argue in the start of his article that, by restricting immigration, his right to bring strangers, or immigrants, or immigrant strangers, into his house is compromised:

    Rather, they keep the immigrants off Larry’s property, against his will.

    Which it is, just as having people locked up in prisons around the nation restricts it, as well. I think what Brennan is advocating for are absolute rights. The absolute right to bring immigrants into one’s property. Huh, okay then.

    That’s it, but… I have another suspicion. Brennan is accusing those who do not let foreigners into their neighborhood of not being decent human beings:

    On its face, this is a weak analogy. When we close borders, we aren’t doing the same thing as putting fences around our houses. Suppose there is a neighborhood made up of 10 landowners. 8 out of 10 of them vote to keep out all foreigners. 1 out of 10, Larry, votes to let them in because he wants to rent his house to them. 1 of them votes to let them in because he’s a decent human being, but he doesn’t himself plan to rent his house.

    Which, if I am correct, is not very humanitarian of him, that is, saying that someone is less of a decent person because of that stance, but whatever.

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    • Replies: @ben tillman

    Jason Brennan’s argument (that Ilya Somin mentions in that article) is far-reaching. He parodies what he refers to the ”it’s my house and I can put up a fence argument” with the analogy:

    I have a right as a white guy not to date black women if I don’t want to. Therefore, we have a right to pass a law saying white guys can’t date black women.
     

     
    His "black woman" analogy is about the worst analogy he could attempt.

    Recognition of my right to make my own decisions (such as not dating black women) does not imply that I have the right to make laws that make similar decisions for other people. In fact, it implies the exact opposite!

    The principle on which my right is based -- each person, through self-ownership, has the right to govern himself -- flatly contradicts what he oddly equates to the simple exercise of a person's self-ownership.

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  25. Svigor says:
    @Clifford Brown

    Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements
     
    Oddly is the operative word here.

    I tried to find any evidence, but it looks like Ilyan Somin is not some sort of hypocrite pushing open borders for some alternative political agenda. Instead, like so many immigration experts on the Libertarian Right, Ilya Somin is your basic autistic sperg type who, while extremely intelligent, should not be allowed anywhere near a position of leadership or influence. He is exactly as you imagine he is. His theoretical premises are all fine in the abstract realm of theory, but completely deficient in real world practice.

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSbho1m07E0

    The test for this: do they give Israel a really, really hard time on the issue? That’s what genius ‘spergs would do. They’d (intellectually) go where the problem is, without regard for the social faux pas. Like Doctors Without Borders, who spend a lot more of their DWB time in places like Syria, and not so much on the French Riviera.

    Something tells me he doesn’t. Just a hunch.

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    • Replies: @notanon
    yes - that always needs to be the first question just to save time

    in my experience 9 times out of 10 they start evasive maneuvers
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  26. Anonymous[264] • Disclaimer says:
    @Clifford Brown

    Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements
     
    Oddly is the operative word here.

    I tried to find any evidence, but it looks like Ilyan Somin is not some sort of hypocrite pushing open borders for some alternative political agenda. Instead, like so many immigration experts on the Libertarian Right, Ilya Somin is your basic autistic sperg type who, while extremely intelligent, should not be allowed anywhere near a position of leadership or influence. He is exactly as you imagine he is. His theoretical premises are all fine in the abstract realm of theory, but completely deficient in real world practice.

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSbho1m07E0

    Ilyan Somin reminds me of Milton in the movie Office Space.

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    • Agree: International Jew
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  27. The pathological chutzpah of this Russian born Jew is stomach-turning. His tribe are the masters, goyim are the slaves – and all of his talmudic “arguments” flow from that principle. He means it, maaan.

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  28. bomag says:
    @istevefan

    1 out of 10, Larry, votes to let them in because he wants to rent his house to them. 1 of them votes to let them in because he’s a decent human being, but he doesn’t himself plan to rent his house. When the 8 put up a fence around the neighborhood, they don’t merely keep immigrants off their own property. Rather, they keep the immigrants off Larry’s property, against his will.
     
    Will Larry agree to pay for any damages his immigrant tenants do to the surrounding area or neighbors' properties? Will Larry agree to cover his immigrant tenants' debts and social costs if they become a public charge?

    Mentioned before I find it is quite odd that Americans are receiving the lion's share of this effort to open up borders given the fact that America's borders have been essentially open for the past 50 years. There is really no argument about this fact given we have had the largest migration of people in history over that time period. So much so that a nation that always thought of itself as white will be majority nonwhite in a two or three decades. My guess is we could double or triple our annual intake of immigrants and it still wouldn't be enough for them.

    Will Larry agree to pay for any damages his immigrant tenants do to the surrounding area or neighbors’ properties? Will Larry agree to cover his immigrant tenants’ debts and social costs if they become a public charge?

    Somin and crew start with the premise that immigrants are good everywhere, all the time; and there is no limit to the resources available to succor them.

    Most people grok that there is a rather finite amount of good stuff: a finite amount of good people that make a place better; and more cars on the highway doesn’t do much to improve my life.

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  29. Whiskey says: • Website

    Bottom line, Open Borders and mass third world immigration are a done deal unless and until we can start the Ocasio Cortez faction the demand, that now that they really have thought about it, Bill Gates money and property really belongs to them. On account of their emotional labor on behalf of White people. And also Zuckerberg, Bezos, Buffett, and the most entertaining Supervillain oligarch of them all, Elon Musk.

    Start up a Viva La Raza! type movement to seize wealthy White men’s money, and that border wall go up quicker than the Salem Witch Trials ended when the Wife of the Governor of Massachusetts was accused.

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    • Replies: @Hibernian
    Problem is they're really into trading quite large portions of their wealth for power and they have no problem with grabbing a tiger by the tail and believing they can control him.
    , @S. Anonyia
    I think this is the first time I’ve ever found myself agreeing with Whiskey.

    But yeah the open borders premise basically flows from the idea that the third world should have automatic access to the developed world because of colonialism, hereditarial privilege is unfair yadda yadda. Well from that premise any old working or middle class Joe can then make a pretty convincing argument that they have the right to plunder the wealth of the elites.

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  30. Rob McX says:
    @istevefan

    1 out of 10, Larry, votes to let them in because he wants to rent his house to them. 1 of them votes to let them in because he’s a decent human being, but he doesn’t himself plan to rent his house. When the 8 put up a fence around the neighborhood, they don’t merely keep immigrants off their own property. Rather, they keep the immigrants off Larry’s property, against his will.
     
    Will Larry agree to pay for any damages his immigrant tenants do to the surrounding area or neighbors' properties? Will Larry agree to cover his immigrant tenants' debts and social costs if they become a public charge?

    Mentioned before I find it is quite odd that Americans are receiving the lion's share of this effort to open up borders given the fact that America's borders have been essentially open for the past 50 years. There is really no argument about this fact given we have had the largest migration of people in history over that time period. So much so that a nation that always thought of itself as white will be majority nonwhite in a two or three decades. My guess is we could double or triple our annual intake of immigrants and it still wouldn't be enough for them.

    Will Larry agree to cover his immigrant tenants’ debts and social costs if they become a public charge?

    In the libertarians’ utopia, there will be no public assistance. The whole population of Bangladesh can come to America if they want, but they’ll have to work for $3 an hour and no food stamps. If they want to supplement their income by scavenging in rubbish tips, that is their choice.

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    • Replies: @Unladen Swallow
    Assume a can opener. These libertarians assume no welfare state, and no differences amongst immigrants.
    , @Achmed E. Newman
    Nah, bad premise there. If there's no public assistance, they won't be coming. It could take a while for the people on the other end to learn that, but that's the end result. "You can't have a welfare state AND open borders."
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  31. Achilles says:

    So, yet another sophistical argument against American self-government. Because, of course, Americans might choose to govern themselves, such as in immigration policy, in ways that happen not to coincide with perceived Jewish transnational ethno-group interest.

    Taken to its logical conclusion, Somin’s principle would mean no law should be considered proper unless it has the unanimous approval of everyone in the community bound by such law.

    After all, if even one person desires not to be constrained by a particular law, then that law is unfair to that person in the same sense that immigration law is unfair to the person who wishes to illegally bring in a foreign national to whom to sell his house.

    1 of them votes to let them in because he’s a decent human being

    Ever notice how they often try to smuggle moral arguments into what is supposedly a dispassionate economic or property-rights analysis? And that their ‘morality’ at bottom is nothing more than the narrow self-interest of their own particular group as against those they consider their enemies?

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    • Agree: bomag
    • Replies: @densa
    This is my agree button. They also never mention that this decent one violates the rights of the indecent eight who desire to live with fences. Mr. Decent is in the wrong HOA, possibly the wrong country. He should move.
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  32. bomag says:
    @anony-mouse
    Aren't you 'proving' Somin wrong by using exceptions to the rule? The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner's associations.

    Also Somin is a libertarian, and libertarians minimize 'externatlities' in general (see pollution). Of course if you talk about 'externalities' a lot you might as well abolish private property period and join the DSA.

    The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.

    The vast majority of American homeowners live under a great number of building codes; regulations; and laws.

    Let’s see how much sympathy Somin has for his neighbor who conducts live firing of heavy artillery; sells drugs; runs a brothel; and tells the IRS his house is 100% a business expense.

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    • Replies: @Hibernian
    "...runs a brothel; and tells the IRS his house is 100% a business expense."

    I think those two go together quite well.
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  33. When we close borders, we aren’t doing the same thing as putting fences around our houses.

    Yes, we are doing exactly the same thing.

    Suppose there is a neighborhood made up of 10 landowners. 8 out of 10 of them vote to keep out all foreigners. 1 out of 10, Larry, votes to let them in because he wants to rent his house to them. 1 of them votes to let them in because he’s a decent human being, but he doesn’t himself plan to rent his house. When the 8 put up a fence around the neighborhood, they don’t merely keep immigrants off their own property. Rather, they keep the immigrants off Larry’s property, against his will.

    Idiotic. If the members of a household or a co-op disagree, the desire of one dissenter triumphs over the desires over the others? The vote of one shareholder who wants to give away corporate assets trumps the votes of all other shareholders? Even though the dissenter is the aggressor?

    No, the new guy in the household or the new citizen or the owner of newly issued stock dilutes the ownership interest of the others. As a matter of law, unless the co-owners have agreed on some other method of addressing such issues, the owners whose property value is being prospectively diminished must agree unanimously that the dilution of their ownership share is more than offset by the new value the newcomer will contribute.

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    • Replies: @Lot
    It is funny how I have never, ever, ever, as a 10+ year reader of isteve and kausfiles and frequent reader of other sources, never seen an immigration restrictionist say a nation is like a house.

    Somin, as a libertarian academic, could have addressed his fellow libertarian academic Hans Herman Hoppe's restrictionism moral-political justification. Or our own SS's citizenism and analogy to not a house, but a nice suburb. Or Japan's successful no immigration model. Or Kaus and Bojas's concerns about immigration-driven economic inequality causing political and cultural degradation.

    No, instead he makes up a strawman argument about a house that isn't even a good strawman and remotely similar to any real argument. Then he makes up his own really stupid analogy to a ten house community!

    I think Ben you make a mistake even accepting his stupid and abtract premise for the sake of refuting it.

    Somin and the Kochs, out of ideological fanaticism and greed, want to destroy America by importing tens or hundreds of millions African and Muslim savages. They want the destruction of our common lands, our schools, our churches, our traditions, and our form of government.
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  34. Jason Liu says:

    This is the same line of reasoning used when people say “we’ll let every citizen decide X for themselves”! Nah. Society should generally favor the majority.

    Is it collectivist and illiberal? Sure. So what?

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  35. Deckin says:

    His argument is so ridiculous it’s almost painful to point it out. 8/10 residents of the neighborhood have decided that they want to punish murder with imprisonment. 2/10 don’t want to do that because they enjoy the frisson of renting out their homes to dangerous homicidal maniacs. Because the majority wins the day asserting their rights, the property rights of the 2 who disagree are infringed upon. The whole argument Somin makes assumes that any restriction on a property owner’s unfettered ability to do whatever the hell he wants (no matter what its effect on the rights of others) is an illegitimate infringement on property rights. This kind of stuff give BS a bad name.

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    • Replies: @Clifford Brown
    It's call Minoritarianism. An ideology quite popular amongst our Elites for some reason.
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  36. Svigor says:
    @Clifford Brown

    Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements
     
    Oddly is the operative word here.

    I tried to find any evidence, but it looks like Ilyan Somin is not some sort of hypocrite pushing open borders for some alternative political agenda. Instead, like so many immigration experts on the Libertarian Right, Ilya Somin is your basic autistic sperg type who, while extremely intelligent, should not be allowed anywhere near a position of leadership or influence. He is exactly as you imagine he is. His theoretical premises are all fine in the abstract realm of theory, but completely deficient in real world practice.

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSbho1m07E0

    “Those with the most experience with immigrants tend to be the most pro-immigration” yeah because the rest White Flighted their asses out of there. The ones who could afford it. The ones left tend to be idiocrats who like pro wrestling and telenovelas.

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  37. @ChrisZ
    Steve, the objections you’ve raised are so elementary that I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism. I’m sure the comment thread here will soon be filled with additional critiques.

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought. Even leftists gave it grudging admiration because it claimed to proceed from purely rational principle, and had apparently dispensed with the “God, blood, and soil” preoccupations of traditional conservatisms. Addressing the messiness of human social arrangements was always a limitation of Libertarian theory, but in a bind its adherents would retreat to the excuse that they were only offering “a partial philosophy” dealing with a discreet (i.e. non-messy) part of political-economic life. That alibi at least had the advantage of being honest.

    The immigration question, however, seems to have exposed the arrogance of Libertarian thinkers; their intoxication with those few precious ideas they believe they understand and can thereby apply to every circumstance. Reading Somin here, the tenor reminds me more of Freud or Marx than of Aristotle or J.S. Mill.

    To your earlier post involving Somin, I commented that his argument vindicated my sense that Libertarianism is an inhuman, and potentially dehumanizing, mode of thought. But here it really seems exposed as a mere cover for financial interest. That’s an enormous diminishment in intellectual status, and it makes me wonder whether Libertarianism ever truly existed as a separate philosophy of the right, or was merely a clever residue of Cold War Conservatism, which will not survive the re-aggregation of the old right and left coalitions we are currently witnessing.

    Steve, the objections you’ve raised are so elementary that I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism. I’m sure the comment thread here will soon be filled with additional critiques.

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought.

    Just say, “Hoppe”.

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  38. Enochian says:
    @anony-mouse
    Aren't you 'proving' Somin wrong by using exceptions to the rule? The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner's associations.

    Also Somin is a libertarian, and libertarians minimize 'externatlities' in general (see pollution). Of course if you talk about 'externalities' a lot you might as well abolish private property period and join the DSA.

    The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.

    All the more reason for them to want their country to be treated like one. It’s the ultra wealthy who live in gated communities and private compounds who can afford to treat the rest of the country like a garbage dump.

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  39. Svigor says:
    @Clifford Brown

    Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements
     
    Oddly is the operative word here.

    I tried to find any evidence, but it looks like Ilyan Somin is not some sort of hypocrite pushing open borders for some alternative political agenda. Instead, like so many immigration experts on the Libertarian Right, Ilya Somin is your basic autistic sperg type who, while extremely intelligent, should not be allowed anywhere near a position of leadership or influence. He is exactly as you imagine he is. His theoretical premises are all fine in the abstract realm of theory, but completely deficient in real world practice.

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSbho1m07E0

    He’s not ‘sperging, he’s lying. Carlson caught him when he said we’re bombarded from cradle to grave with the diversity and multicult sheisse. Twice Somin lied and asserted that the propaganda comes from all sides. It’s a carefully-worded lie that’s only technically true (one bullet from the north, one bullet from the east, one bullet from the west, and a hundred million bullets from the south is bullets “coming from all sides” too, but it’s a lie). And yeah he looked like the Wicked Wizard of the East as he got up to leave. Snake.

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Readers in the Comments bring up the house argument. Somin feels besieged by comments that disagree with him.
    , @Steve Sailer
    Readers in the Comments bring up the house argument. Somin feels besieged by comments that disagree with him.
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  40. Mactoul says:

    Economists have entirely ignored the difference between national territory and private property and how this relates to the logical existence of private property itself.

    A national territory is not a private property. It is not owned. America is not owned collectively by Americans.

    A thing is owned if a moral argument can be given for its possession. Ultimately the moral premise is biblical–”man must live by sweat of his labor”. So, ownership is secured by arguments, the kind of arguments that take place in the courts of law over ownership disputes.

    But, the national territory is secured by force of arms, not arguments. Konigsberg was built by generations of Germans but it is now Russian. Why? Because the Russian force of arms conquered it.

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    • Agree: Hibernian
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  41. @anony-mouse
    Aren't you 'proving' Somin wrong by using exceptions to the rule? The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner's associations.

    Also Somin is a libertarian, and libertarians minimize 'externatlities' in general (see pollution). Of course if you talk about 'externalities' a lot you might as well abolish private property period and join the DSA.

    Aren’t you ‘proving’ Somin wrong by using exceptions to the rule? The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.

    Of course, not.

    What you are ignoring is that Somin jumped right past the comparison of a country to a home and moved on to a comparison of a country to a neighborhood. That’s why Steve was addressing HOA’s and co-ops.

    You have it exactly backward:

    1. The “rule” is that property means the right to exclude.
    2. Co-ops and HOA’s are not better examples than simple households where the decision to exclude is almost always unanimous.

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  42. Anon7 says:

    “…immigration restrictions abrogate the rights of property owners who want to rent their property to the excluded migrants, associate with them, or employ them on their land.”

    Finally, a public intellectual who recognizes my right to rent my three extra bedrooms to a Somalian anarchist bomb-maker, an Mexican MS13 gang member, and a Chechen Muslim terrorist. It’s not like the US government has any powers that supersede mine vis a vis relationships with foreign governments or foreign nationals.

    Oh wait. In Ekiu v. United States (1892), the SCOTUS held that, “It is an accepted maxim of international law that every sovereign nation has the power, as inherent in sovereignty, and essential to self-preservation, to forbid the entrance of foreigners within its dominions, or to admit them only in such cases and upon such conditions as it may see fit to prescribe.

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    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    Finally, a public intellectual who recognizes my right to rent my three extra bedrooms to a Somalian anarchist bomb-make...
     
    Anagrams for Ilya Somin:

    Somali yin.
    My liaison.

    Though, to be fair, Somali radicals tend to irredentism (a concept alien to the Somins of the world) and treat their weaponry as remittances, ie, something to send home to the clan.

    It's the Arabs and the Pakis you have to keep your eyes on. Oh, yeah, and the Chechens.
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  43. Anonymous[196] • Disclaimer says:

    Does this also apply to Israel?

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  44. @anony-mouse
    Aren't you 'proving' Somin wrong by using exceptions to the rule? The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner's associations.

    Also Somin is a libertarian, and libertarians minimize 'externatlities' in general (see pollution). Of course if you talk about 'externalities' a lot you might as well abolish private property period and join the DSA.

    Also Somin is a libertarian, and libertarians minimize ‘externatlities’ in general (see pollution). Of course if you talk about ‘externalities’ a lot you might as well abolish private property period and join the DSA.

    Is there anything that imposes more negative externalities than immigration?

    The whole point of immigration is that it enables some people to seize their fellow countrymen’s positive externalities for themselves.

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    • Replies: @Kratoklastes

    Is there anything that imposes more negative externalities than immigration?
     
    Yes. War, for a start. IP Monopolies, for seconds. Tariffs, for thirds. Taxation, for fourths.

    All of those things impose deadweight costs that dwarf any discernible negative impact that results from immigration.

    To put it in perspective, the deadweight loss from taxation is (roughly) 30% - that is, to collect a dollar of taxes costs 30 cents in economic activity that simply goes away, or is misdirected to non-preferred uses (e.g., costs of compliance). To spend one fully-funded dollar, governments must collect $1.20 in taxes; that they then spend the money on vanity projects that are themselves destructive of social welfare just adds insult to injury.

    So anyhow... if anyone actually bothers to do the calculations, government causes more externalities than it solves. That is a result that is so robust that it should be an axiom.

    As to externalities from immigration...

    Generally when people talk about externalities from immigration they are generally thinking about immigration from non-white areas: nobody argues that there's any social issue that arises if a country lets in a bunch of Swedes or Norwegians.

    So the anti-migrant camp talks about disutilities associated with some sort of "loss of culture", or reduction in "social cohesion" (which is code for de-whitening of the demos).

    Those disutilities are almost entirely concentrated in a reactionary segment of the community who seldom interact with migrants anyhow; they're more or less offset by the utility obtained by people who think multiculturalism creates a more vibrant society (and who do tend to interact with migrants, if only by going to Taco Bell).

    I'm not playing "conservatard/libtard" on this, because I don't give a shit either way: my personal preference is to have as little to do with the demos as possible, so I don't give a shit about its racial composition. (I'm the guy who can live in a house for five years and never have a conversation with the 'neighbour': misanthropy is a patrilinear trait in my family).

    Anyhow - my preferences only matter for me: back to the issue.

    Some folks will try to use anecdotes to support claims that immigration leads to increases in crime rates - and they will assert that illegal immigration causes more increased crime than legal immigration.

    They don't seem to care that the data simply does not support that assertion. Even if the data did support the claim, crimes are not externalities; not every adverse consequence of a policy is an externality.

    Let's dive into the data dumpster (defining 'serious' crime as violent crime plus property crime, and noting that serious crime has been falling rapidly since the mid-90s):
    ① city-level rates of serious crime correlate negatively with the proportion of the total population that are foreign-born (see [1] and [2]);
    ② state-level rates of serious crime correlate positively with the proportion of the total population that are white trash (the worst states are Louisiana, Alabama, Alaska, Tennessee, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Arkansas, Delaware, and Missouri - see [3]);
    ③ tract-level rates of serious crime are uncorrelated with the proportion of immigrants (for Austin, TX - see [4])
    ④ racial propensities to commit serious crime seem to go "Black > White > Latino" (see [5])

    So it's very hard to make the case that the decline in serious crime since the 90s would be even more faster if there were fewer immigrants. (Oddly, second- and third-generation immigrant offspring commit crimes at higher-than-usual rates: so people whose grandparents immigrated to the US 75 years ago are risky fuckers).

    There are very plausible reasons why immigrants - and particularly illegal immigrants - should be expected to be less involved in crime: namely, that they face deportation if apprehended. As such, they keep their heads down (and this shows up in the statistics).

    It's always possible to find a sensational news report where an illegal Mexican is charged with the rape and murder of a blonde, blue-eyed little girl: those things happen, it's terrible that they happen, and if the arrested person is guilty (rather than a target of convenience for law enforcement) then they're in deep shit. It still doesn't make anecdote-based analysis useful.

    Disclosure: the research centre that I worked at in the 90s was constantly involved in a media imbroglio over immigration (in Austrralia) - in part because one of the country's most vocal anti-immigration academics was on the floor below us. It was easy for journalists to get sound bites from us if they were out filming Bob.

    Our centre's weltanschauung was unapologetically economic-rationalist: so we advocated for unilateral dismantling of trade barriers, liberalisation of labour markets, a freely-floating exchange rate, unimpeded international capital flows ... all the standard elements of laissez faire.

    The Centre's view on immigration restrictions was one of complete agnosticism: in theory it should be welfare-enhancing in aggregate, but as far as we could determine from the data, such restrictions as were in place had no discernible effect on things that matter (output per capita, and the rate of capital accumulation, being two of the important key metrics).

    Theoretically, immigration also adds to pressure on social infrastructure - which can be viewed as having been funded by past generations of citizens.

    That might make you think that migrants who bring no capital with them are a drain... until you realise that all the infrastructure was built using deficit financing, and so more taxpaying "hands on deck" actually reduces the budgetary pressure on the existing domestic tax base (and with government waste as significant as it is, any reduction in tax rates carries with it the most significant externality-amelioration that exists in a modern economy: to reiterate - governments cause more externalities than they solve).

    My personal view is that if a country is prepared to permit my money to cross its borders without let or hindrance, it should permit my body to do so - but in the 90s that and $2.40 would get you a coffee in the West End café.

    References

    (note: if you copy and paste the link references into sci-hub.tw it will give you the PDF of the paper if it's not a publicly-available resource)

    [1] Stowell, Messner, McGeever, and Raffalovich (2009) Immigration and the recent violent crime drop in the United States: A pooled, cross-sectional time-series analysis of metropolitan areas. Criminology, 47, pp889–928.
    [2] Ousey and Kubrin (2014) Immigration and the changing nature of homicide in US cities, 1980–2010. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 30, pp453–483.
    [3] Frohlich, Stebbins, & Sauter, 2015 America’s most violent (and most peaceful) states
    [4] Stansfield, Akins, Rumbaut, and Hammer (2013) Assessing the effects of recent immigration on serious property crime in Austin, Texas. Sociological Perspectives, 56(4), pp647–672.
    [5] Sampson, Morenoff, and Raudenbush (2005) Social anatomy of racial and ethnic disparities in violence. American Journal of Public Health, 95(2), pp224–232.

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  45. Mactoul says:

    Conquest isn’t theft. Stealing is always wrong because it violates “property is secured by arguments” logic. For if there are arguments then a proposition can be right or wrong.
    Hence “this thing is owned by person A” –this proposition can be true or false. And a person that steals an owned thing does wrong.

    The national territory is simply a land possessed by a nation and secured by the national force of arms. A thing that is secured by arms can be taken away by superior arms. There are no moral arguments per se.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Elsewhere
    Oh, yeah? Then why all the screeching about Crimea?
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  46. istevefan says:
    @ChrisZ
    Steve, the objections you’ve raised are so elementary that I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism. I’m sure the comment thread here will soon be filled with additional critiques.

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought. Even leftists gave it grudging admiration because it claimed to proceed from purely rational principle, and had apparently dispensed with the “God, blood, and soil” preoccupations of traditional conservatisms. Addressing the messiness of human social arrangements was always a limitation of Libertarian theory, but in a bind its adherents would retreat to the excuse that they were only offering “a partial philosophy” dealing with a discreet (i.e. non-messy) part of political-economic life. That alibi at least had the advantage of being honest.

    The immigration question, however, seems to have exposed the arrogance of Libertarian thinkers; their intoxication with those few precious ideas they believe they understand and can thereby apply to every circumstance. Reading Somin here, the tenor reminds me more of Freud or Marx than of Aristotle or J.S. Mill.

    To your earlier post involving Somin, I commented that his argument vindicated my sense that Libertarianism is an inhuman, and potentially dehumanizing, mode of thought. But here it really seems exposed as a mere cover for financial interest. That’s an enormous diminishment in intellectual status, and it makes me wonder whether Libertarianism ever truly existed as a separate philosophy of the right, or was merely a clever residue of Cold War Conservatism, which will not survive the re-aggregation of the old right and left coalitions we are currently witnessing.

    The immigration question, however, seems to have exposed the arrogance of Libertarian thinkers;…

    Not all libertarians are like this. Ilana Mercer, featured here at unz.com, considers herself a paleo-libertarian and she is very much against this lunacy on immigration.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Thomas
    Back in his NRO days, Derb came up with this:

    The affection of liberals for mass immigration, both legal and illegal, is thus very easy to understand. Why, though, do libertarians favor it? And why do I think they are nuts to do so?

    So far as the first of those questions is concerned, I confess myself baffled. I think that what is going on here is just a sort of ideological overshoot. Suspicion of state power is of course at the center of classical libertarianism. If the state is making and enforcing decisions about who may settle in territories under the state’s jurisdiction, that is certainly a manifestation of state power, and therefore comes under libertarian suspicion. Just why libertarians consider it an obnoxious manifestation — well, that’s where my bafflement begins. (That some exercises of state power are necessary and un-obnoxious is conceded by nearly all libertarians.)
    ...
    As to why I think libertarians are nuts to favor mass uncontrolled immigration from the third world: I think they are nuts because their enthusiasm on this matter is suicidal to their cause. Their ideological passion is blinding them to a rather obvious fact: that libertarianism is a peculiarly American doctrine, with very little appeal to the huddled masses of the third world. If libertarianism implies mass third-world immigration, then it is self-destroying. Libertarianism is simply not attractive either to illiterate peasants from mercantilist Latin American states, or to East Asians with traditions of imperial-bureaucratic paternalism, or to the products of Middle Eastern Muslim theocracies.
    ...
    A libertarian might, though, say that while libertarianism could indeed be a hard sell to immigrants from very illiberal political traditions, it will appeal to their Americanized children, to the second generation. Possibly so. Even setting aside the great strengthening of the welfare state caused by the preferences of that first generation, though, to sell libertarianism to the second generation would need a tremendous missionary effort. According to Brink Lindsey, only 13 percent of Americans currently lean libertarian. If decades of libertarian proselytizing have only achieved that much success with a population rooted in the traditions of Pericles and Magna Carta, of the Renaissance, Reformation, and Enlightenment, of Washington, Jefferson, and Madison, how well should libertarians expect to do with the political descendants of emperors and caliphs, of Toussaint L’Ouverture and Mao Tse-tung?
    ...
    If less than one in seven American voters is inclined to libertarianism, then there is much missionary work to be done among present-day American citizens. To think that this missionary effort will be made any easier by a steady stream of arrivals from foreign parts, most of which have never known rational, consensual government, is highly unrealistic, to the point of delusion.

    That is why I say that libertarians who favor mass immigration are nuts. If there is any hope at all for libertarianism, it rests in the libertarianism of my title: libertarianism in one country.
     
    https://www.nationalreview.com/2006/12/libertarianism-one-country-john-derbyshire/
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  47. Why isn’t citizenship a sort of “property right”? With immigration acting as a dilution of one’s citizenship share interest in the country? Immigration dilutes both your voting rights, but also your per capita interest in the aggregate wealth of the country. Just as with a corporation, current citizen shareholders have an interest in preventing dilution of their shares.

    Read More
    • Agree: ben tillman
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  48. istevefan says:

    …the craziest Koch Bros uber alles …

    I suggest from now on we call them the Cuck Brothers.

    Read More
    • Agree: Seamus Padraig
    • Replies: @Thomas

    I suggest from now on we call them the Cuck Brothers.
     
    I can't believe this is the first time I've seen this.
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  49. @Rob McX

    Will Larry agree to cover his immigrant tenants’ debts and social costs if they become a public charge?
     
    In the libertarians' utopia, there will be no public assistance. The whole population of Bangladesh can come to America if they want, but they'll have to work for $3 an hour and no food stamps. If they want to supplement their income by scavenging in rubbish tips, that is their choice.

    Assume a can opener. These libertarians assume no welfare state, and no differences amongst immigrants.

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  50. Anonymous[294] • Disclaimer says:

    In the previous iSteve article on this jerk Somin:

    We find Somin dreaming of a world without inheritance…

    …which is obviously MARXISM 101.

    This jerk is a crypto Marxist and not a libertarian, obviously.

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  51. Achilles says:

    But it can also justify all kinds of repressive government policies that target natives, as well. If a state has the same powers over land within the national territory as a homeowner has over her house, then the state has broad power to suppress speech and religion the rulers disapprove of.

    This is such a childish argument by Somin.

    I hate to have to tell you this, little Ilyashka, but there are limits and boundaries to human behavior even in a nation that tries to recognize broad freedoms of speech and religion.

    Ultimately these freedoms are constrained by the necessarily metaphysical perspective of (in other words, moral, or ethical if you prefer) standards of human behavior that are inherent in the civilization from which such nation is formed.

    For America, that is a fundamentally Christian metaphysical perspective, in a very broad sense, recognizing a Creator from whom human beings have existence and by reason of which human beings have a certain dignity that implies rights that governments, to be just, must respect and which carries along with that a number of other conceptions of the significance of human beings in creation and our relationship to it.

    If someone, say, from Central America wishes to immigrate to the USA and sincerely practice the religion of his ancestors which in that person’s sincere understanding requires human sacrifice to appease his gods, then nevertheless our laws will not permit him to exercise his religion in that way, notwithstanding our constitutional guarantee of freedom of religion. This is because everything, including the Constitution, must be understood in the context of the metaphysical perspective of the civilization which has produced it.

    In the USA this has worked remarkably well for centuries even through a few rough patches, bringing into our ambit peoples with a moral perspective deriving from various strains of Christian Protestantism, Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodox and Mormons among others as well as reasonably small populations of village atheists and adherents to some eastern religions such as Buddhism.

    But unfortunately this has failed miserably in the attempt to assimilate Jews into America on the basis of some sort of ‘Judeo-Christian’ metaphysical understanding. The hyperethnocentrism of the Jews has proven an insurmountable obstacle, and perhaps we would have known better had we carefully studied the disastrous centuries of experience of Jewish/non-Jewish relations in Eastern Europe before admitting to our nation a large population consisting of that group.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Art Deco
    The hyperethnocentrism of the Jews has proven an insurmountable obstacle

    MBITRW, the Jewish population in this country is imploding from inter-marriage and the subset of that population least inclined to be antagonistic to features of the social and cultural order which prevailed prior to about 1966 are the Orthodox, who commonly keep their dealings with the larger society strictly professional.
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  52. utu says:
    @ChrisZ
    Steve, the objections you’ve raised are so elementary that I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism. I’m sure the comment thread here will soon be filled with additional critiques.

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought. Even leftists gave it grudging admiration because it claimed to proceed from purely rational principle, and had apparently dispensed with the “God, blood, and soil” preoccupations of traditional conservatisms. Addressing the messiness of human social arrangements was always a limitation of Libertarian theory, but in a bind its adherents would retreat to the excuse that they were only offering “a partial philosophy” dealing with a discreet (i.e. non-messy) part of political-economic life. That alibi at least had the advantage of being honest.

    The immigration question, however, seems to have exposed the arrogance of Libertarian thinkers; their intoxication with those few precious ideas they believe they understand and can thereby apply to every circumstance. Reading Somin here, the tenor reminds me more of Freud or Marx than of Aristotle or J.S. Mill.

    To your earlier post involving Somin, I commented that his argument vindicated my sense that Libertarianism is an inhuman, and potentially dehumanizing, mode of thought. But here it really seems exposed as a mere cover for financial interest. That’s an enormous diminishment in intellectual status, and it makes me wonder whether Libertarianism ever truly existed as a separate philosophy of the right, or was merely a clever residue of Cold War Conservatism, which will not survive the re-aggregation of the old right and left coalitions we are currently witnessing.

    The term “libertarianism”is distasteful to people who think seriously about politics. Both Dr. F.A. Hayek and your servant have gone out of their way, from time to time, to declare that they refuse to be tagged with this label. Anyone much influenced by t h e thought of Edmund Burke and of Alexis de Tocqueville – as are both Professor Hayek and this commentator – sets his face against ideology; and libertarianism is a simplistic ideology, relished by one variety of the folk whom Jacob Burckhardt called “the terrible simplifiers.” (Russell Kirk)

    Freedom: who could object? Yet this word is now used to justify a thousand forms of exploitation. Throughout the rightwing press and blogosphere, among thinktanks and governments, the word excuses every assault on the lives of the poor, every form of inequality and intrusion to which the 1% subject us. How did libertarianism, once a noble impulse, become synonymous with injustice? (George Monbiot)

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  53. MattinLA says:

    Somin is an unreadable, monomaniacal sperg and has been for years.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Svigor
    There's no way he's as unreadable as he is unwatchable. I got MAYBE 50% of what he was saying in the linked Carlson interview. Way too much of my focus was absorbed by his creepy aneurotypical manner.
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  54. Thomas says:
    @ChrisZ
    Steve, the objections you’ve raised are so elementary that I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism. I’m sure the comment thread here will soon be filled with additional critiques.

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought. Even leftists gave it grudging admiration because it claimed to proceed from purely rational principle, and had apparently dispensed with the “God, blood, and soil” preoccupations of traditional conservatisms. Addressing the messiness of human social arrangements was always a limitation of Libertarian theory, but in a bind its adherents would retreat to the excuse that they were only offering “a partial philosophy” dealing with a discreet (i.e. non-messy) part of political-economic life. That alibi at least had the advantage of being honest.

    The immigration question, however, seems to have exposed the arrogance of Libertarian thinkers; their intoxication with those few precious ideas they believe they understand and can thereby apply to every circumstance. Reading Somin here, the tenor reminds me more of Freud or Marx than of Aristotle or J.S. Mill.

    To your earlier post involving Somin, I commented that his argument vindicated my sense that Libertarianism is an inhuman, and potentially dehumanizing, mode of thought. But here it really seems exposed as a mere cover for financial interest. That’s an enormous diminishment in intellectual status, and it makes me wonder whether Libertarianism ever truly existed as a separate philosophy of the right, or was merely a clever residue of Cold War Conservatism, which will not survive the re-aggregation of the old right and left coalitions we are currently witnessing.

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought.

    Read More
    • Replies: @ScarletNumber
    In an ideal world, the appearance of the 2017 Libertarians would have nothing to do with the validity of their viewpoints.

    Sadly, we don't live in that world.

    I'm not sure of the gender of the one on the right. I think the one on the left is a woman.
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  55. Thomas says:
    @istevefan

    ...the craziest Koch Bros uber alles ...
     
    I suggest from now on we call them the Cuck Brothers.

    I suggest from now on we call them the Cuck Brothers.

    I can’t believe this is the first time I’ve seen this.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rob McX
    And their media shills would be Kochsuckers.
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  56. @Svigor
    He's not 'sperging, he's lying. Carlson caught him when he said we're bombarded from cradle to grave with the diversity and multicult sheisse. Twice Somin lied and asserted that the propaganda comes from all sides. It's a carefully-worded lie that's only technically true (one bullet from the north, one bullet from the east, one bullet from the west, and a hundred million bullets from the south is bullets "coming from all sides" too, but it's a lie). And yeah he looked like the Wicked Wizard of the East as he got up to leave. Snake.

    Readers in the Comments bring up the house argument. Somin feels besieged by comments that disagree with him.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Tyrion 2
    I listened to an interview with David Brooks recently where he mentioned the comments and email correspondence that he receives.

    I'd always thought that writers would take this stuff with a pinch of salt - it's the internet after all.

    Instead, Brooks recounted how he had previously been forced by his own emotional state to give reading them to an intern (at the time, Reihan Salam) but then the intern was similarly brought low and they had to avoid them altogether.

    Brooks seems like quite a sensitive guy but he also sounded devastated recounting this.

    To what extent has the progressive lurch of mainstream media writers in the last few years been an emotional reaction to the ludicrous avalanche of hate mail sent to them? Perhaps the trolls don't realise the collective effect they are having?

    Receiving one, "I'm glad we gassed your Grandma" joke a month may actually be bracing and allow the receiver to understand how their writing might sometimes be perceived.

    Receiving a hundred copy and pasted similar threats/jokes a day is never going to help with moderation and emotional distance.

    The outsider only hears the man with the megaphone. The man with the megaphone only hears the troll voices screeching and shouting in his ear.

    , @res
    Thanks for the pointer to the comments.

    Do you have a pointer to "Somin feels besieged by comments that disagree with him"? I did not see that (though I can certainly understand why he would).
    , @Svigor
    You mean to say that sort of thing is the source of his "from all sides" comment? If so it's like a man saying the weather in his backyard balances out the weather on his continent.

    He's far too intelligent to believe that. His response to Tucker's point about the zeitgeist of multicult propaganda was telling, IMO. A glib, facile lie that exposed what he's really about; verbal gymnastics and lawyering. He doesn't give a damn about the truth; he's trying to bend the jury to his will.

    I suspect Carlson knew exactly what he was doing when he brought this creepy 'sperg out to fight for the other side. He knew his audience would react as if shown what lives under a rock.

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  57. Thomas says:
    @istevefan

    The immigration question, however, seems to have exposed the arrogance of Libertarian thinkers;...
     
    Not all libertarians are like this. Ilana Mercer, featured here at unz.com, considers herself a paleo-libertarian and she is very much against this lunacy on immigration.

    Back in his NRO days, Derb came up with this:

    The affection of liberals for mass immigration, both legal and illegal, is thus very easy to understand. Why, though, do libertarians favor it? And why do I think they are nuts to do so?

    So far as the first of those questions is concerned, I confess myself baffled. I think that what is going on here is just a sort of ideological overshoot. Suspicion of state power is of course at the center of classical libertarianism. If the state is making and enforcing decisions about who may settle in territories under the state’s jurisdiction, that is certainly a manifestation of state power, and therefore comes under libertarian suspicion. Just why libertarians consider it an obnoxious manifestation — well, that’s where my bafflement begins. (That some exercises of state power are necessary and un-obnoxious is conceded by nearly all libertarians.)

    As to why I think libertarians are nuts to favor mass uncontrolled immigration from the third world: I think they are nuts because their enthusiasm on this matter is suicidal to their cause. Their ideological passion is blinding them to a rather obvious fact: that libertarianism is a peculiarly American doctrine, with very little appeal to the huddled masses of the third world. If libertarianism implies mass third-world immigration, then it is self-destroying. Libertarianism is simply not attractive either to illiterate peasants from mercantilist Latin American states, or to East Asians with traditions of imperial-bureaucratic paternalism, or to the products of Middle Eastern Muslim theocracies.

    A libertarian might, though, say that while libertarianism could indeed be a hard sell to immigrants from very illiberal political traditions, it will appeal to their Americanized children, to the second generation. Possibly so. Even setting aside the great strengthening of the welfare state caused by the preferences of that first generation, though, to sell libertarianism to the second generation would need a tremendous missionary effort. According to Brink Lindsey, only 13 percent of Americans currently lean libertarian. If decades of libertarian proselytizing have only achieved that much success with a population rooted in the traditions of Pericles and Magna Carta, of the Renaissance, Reformation, and Enlightenment, of Washington, Jefferson, and Madison, how well should libertarians expect to do with the political descendants of emperors and caliphs, of Toussaint L’Ouverture and Mao Tse-tung?

    If less than one in seven American voters is inclined to libertarianism, then there is much missionary work to be done among present-day American citizens. To think that this missionary effort will be made any easier by a steady stream of arrivals from foreign parts, most of which have never known rational, consensual government, is highly unrealistic, to the point of delusion.

    That is why I say that libertarians who favor mass immigration are nuts. If there is any hope at all for libertarianism, it rests in the libertarianism of my title: libertarianism in one country.

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2006/12/libertarianism-one-country-john-derbyshire/

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    See G.K. Chesterton: "The problem with a madman is not that he is illogical, but that he is only logical".


    Its doubtful that Somin or any of his confederates have any particular identification with or interest in the surrounding society. It's just a matrix in which he lives and works but with which he has nothing but stereotyped interactions and about which he doesn't care as long as his bubble is not invaded. His real society is limited to his social circle and professional contacts.
    , @Reg Cæsar

    If libertarianism implies mass third-world immigration, then it is self-destroying.
     
    Same with Darwinism. Look at his followers' birthrates.

    (Never mind his own. He was an outlier-- cousin Francis was more typical there.)
    , @Achmed E. Newman
    I was off National Review by 2006, so I missed this one. After reading this, and especially:

    If less than one in seven American voters is inclined to libertarianism, then there is much missionary work to be done among present-day American citizens. To think that this missionary effort will be made any easier by a steady stream of arrivals from foreign parts, most of which have never known rational, consensual government, is highly unrealistic, to the point of delusion.
     
    ... I don't have to write a long comment I was going to, to explain this important piece of common sense. Thank you, John Derbyshire. I don't get paid for this.
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  58. @Svigor
    He's not 'sperging, he's lying. Carlson caught him when he said we're bombarded from cradle to grave with the diversity and multicult sheisse. Twice Somin lied and asserted that the propaganda comes from all sides. It's a carefully-worded lie that's only technically true (one bullet from the north, one bullet from the east, one bullet from the west, and a hundred million bullets from the south is bullets "coming from all sides" too, but it's a lie). And yeah he looked like the Wicked Wizard of the East as he got up to leave. Snake.

    Readers in the Comments bring up the house argument. Somin feels besieged by comments that disagree with him.

    Read More
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  59. Rob McX says:
    @Thomas

    I suggest from now on we call them the Cuck Brothers.
     
    I can't believe this is the first time I've seen this.

    And their media shills would be Kochsuckers.

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  60. @Clifford Brown

    Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements
     
    Oddly is the operative word here.

    I tried to find any evidence, but it looks like Ilyan Somin is not some sort of hypocrite pushing open borders for some alternative political agenda. Instead, like so many immigration experts on the Libertarian Right, Ilya Somin is your basic autistic sperg type who, while extremely intelligent, should not be allowed anywhere near a position of leadership or influence. He is exactly as you imagine he is. His theoretical premises are all fine in the abstract realm of theory, but completely deficient in real world practice.

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSbho1m07E0

    Ugh, I wish they could find someone smarter than Tucker Carlson.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Lot
    What? While it is a low bar, Tucker has the bravest and best political show on TV.
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  61. @ChrisZ
    Steve, the objections you’ve raised are so elementary that I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism. I’m sure the comment thread here will soon be filled with additional critiques.

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought. Even leftists gave it grudging admiration because it claimed to proceed from purely rational principle, and had apparently dispensed with the “God, blood, and soil” preoccupations of traditional conservatisms. Addressing the messiness of human social arrangements was always a limitation of Libertarian theory, but in a bind its adherents would retreat to the excuse that they were only offering “a partial philosophy” dealing with a discreet (i.e. non-messy) part of political-economic life. That alibi at least had the advantage of being honest.

    The immigration question, however, seems to have exposed the arrogance of Libertarian thinkers; their intoxication with those few precious ideas they believe they understand and can thereby apply to every circumstance. Reading Somin here, the tenor reminds me more of Freud or Marx than of Aristotle or J.S. Mill.

    To your earlier post involving Somin, I commented that his argument vindicated my sense that Libertarianism is an inhuman, and potentially dehumanizing, mode of thought. But here it really seems exposed as a mere cover for financial interest. That’s an enormous diminishment in intellectual status, and it makes me wonder whether Libertarianism ever truly existed as a separate philosophy of the right, or was merely a clever residue of Cold War Conservatism, which will not survive the re-aggregation of the old right and left coalitions we are currently witnessing.

    ChrisZ wrote:

    I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism.

    There are quite obvious libertarian responses to Somin:

    1) Prospective immigrants want and need to use the public infrastructure (roads, etc.) built and paid for by ourselves and our ancestors. Surely, by libertarian standards, we who are currently citizens own that infrastructure, not prospective immigrants. And we are entitled to deny immigrants the use of this infrastructure which we own.

    2) Under our “democratic” political system, immigrants (or their children) eventually gain the right to participate in the legalized looting (taxation) of the productive members of our society. By libertarians standards, we are under no obligation to grant them that right.

    3) Under current anti-discrimination laws, we have to associate in certain ways with immigrants (especially from the Third World) whether we wish to or not. Again, this violates libertarian principles.

    An ideal libertarian world would handle immigration much the way Disney World does: i.e., no one is automatically free to “immigrate” to Disney World, though the management might be willing to work something out if you are willing to pay enough money and show you would behave yourself.

    But, of course, having your own personal suite at the Mickey Mouse Hotel does not give you the right to vote on taking money from others who are at Disney World and it certainly does not guarantee you the automatic right to “immigrate” to Universal Studios or Seaworld Orlando, even though they may be right down the road!

    Somin has actually not thought this through from a libertarian perspective.

    (N.B. I am far from the first to have made these points: as Ben Tillman notes, check out the work of H.-H. Hoppe for a leading libertarian who discusses all this in great detail.)

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    • Replies: @utu
    In the libertarian utopia there is no public infrastructure. Who does not own it must pay for its usage.
    , @ChrisZ
    Thank you, Dave, for this extensive response. And thanks too to Ben Tillman, iStevefan, Utu, and Thomas for their wonderfully informative replies.

    Regarding Dave's Libertarian responses to Slomin: Though these are surely solid from the perspective of Libertarian thought, to me at least they seem to highlight the limitations of that thought overall. Arguments that assert "We are not legally obliged..." or "Under our current system..." (these are my words, not Dave's) seem like a thin, brittle foundation on which to address current immigration issues.

    For example, it's one thing to say that we should not be forced to associate with people we don't like. But the deeper question might be, Why do we associate in certain ways, with certain people, to begin with? What meaning does that hold for societies and nations? What is the value of historical continuity in a nation? And on what basis can a people make distinctions between different groups of potential immigrants, welcoming only those who would be compatible with their established way of life?

    These are certainly the kinds of questions dealt with in the present forum. Does Libertarianism offer meaningful contributions towards answering them? (Please note this is not a question directed at PhysicistDave; I'm just thinking out loud). Libertarianism appears to provide answers to the questions of yesterday, but not of tomorrow.

    I suppose my related question regarding heterodox thinkers like Hoppe and Mercer would be: How much longer will they consider the Libertarian banner to be a meaningful description of their thought?
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  62. eah says:

    Here’s a very good reason: the coercive tax system.

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    • Replies: @eah
    https://s26.postimg.cc/tv32u6evt/per_capita_lifetime_budgetary_impact.jpg
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  63. eah says:
    @eah
    Here's a very good reason: the coercive tax system.

    https://twitter.com/SoylentMerchant/status/1012113275365003264

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    • Replies: @eah
    OT

    But another interesting graph about money -- I wonder: What is the racial makeup of IL public employees? -- it is known the pension obligations of the Chicago school system contribute significantly to the general public pension problem in IL -- and there almost 60% of the staff are either black or Hispanic.

    https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/G1-pension.png
    , @Rosie
    Wow. It's devastating when you lay it all out like that. So much for White privilege.
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  64. @Deckin
    His argument is so ridiculous it's almost painful to point it out. 8/10 residents of the neighborhood have decided that they want to punish murder with imprisonment. 2/10 don't want to do that because they enjoy the frisson of renting out their homes to dangerous homicidal maniacs. Because the majority wins the day asserting their rights, the property rights of the 2 who disagree are infringed upon. The whole argument Somin makes assumes that any restriction on a property owner's unfettered ability to do whatever the hell he wants (no matter what its effect on the rights of others) is an illegitimate infringement on property rights. This kind of stuff give BS a bad name.

    It’s call Minoritarianism. An ideology quite popular amongst our Elites for some reason.

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  65. Anonymous[210] • Disclaimer says:

    Odd also that he completely ignores the concept of ‘sovereignty’ – *the* basis of any legal system – (the two are so intertwined as to be really one and the same) – and of ‘democracy’ – the method of ultimately controlling sovereignty which I take it is now much in vogue having displaced the monarchies of times past.

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  66. utu says:
    @PhysicistDave
    ChrisZ wrote:

    I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism.
     
    There are quite obvious libertarian responses to Somin:

    1) Prospective immigrants want and need to use the public infrastructure (roads, etc.) built and paid for by ourselves and our ancestors. Surely, by libertarian standards, we who are currently citizens own that infrastructure, not prospective immigrants. And we are entitled to deny immigrants the use of this infrastructure which we own.

    2) Under our "democratic" political system, immigrants (or their children) eventually gain the right to participate in the legalized looting (taxation) of the productive members of our society. By libertarians standards, we are under no obligation to grant them that right.

    3) Under current anti-discrimination laws, we have to associate in certain ways with immigrants (especially from the Third World) whether we wish to or not. Again, this violates libertarian principles.

    An ideal libertarian world would handle immigration much the way Disney World does: i.e., no one is automatically free to "immigrate" to Disney World, though the management might be willing to work something out if you are willing to pay enough money and show you would behave yourself.

    But, of course, having your own personal suite at the Mickey Mouse Hotel does not give you the right to vote on taking money from others who are at Disney World and it certainly does not guarantee you the automatic right to "immigrate" to Universal Studios or Seaworld Orlando, even though they may be right down the road!

    Somin has actually not thought this through from a libertarian perspective.

    (N.B. I am far from the first to have made these points: as Ben Tillman notes, check out the work of H.-H. Hoppe for a leading libertarian who discusses all this in great detail.)

    In the libertarian utopia there is no public infrastructure. Who does not own it must pay for its usage.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Cloudbuster
    Why would there be no public infrastructure? Libertarianism calls for a small state, not no state. A lot of so-called libertarians seem to take a leap straight into anarchism, which is a far different and even more juvenile philosophy, without even bothering to note that they've made the leap.
    , @PhysicistDave
    utu wrote to me:

    In the libertarian utopia there is no public infrastructure. Who does not own it must pay for its usage
     
    Indeed. And, a key theme of modern "welfare economics," transcending any specific ideology, is that if everything is privately owned, if property rights are completely clear and well-established, then "negative externalities" take care of themselves.

    Of course, the key word here is "if"! As any competent economist can tell you, it is debatable if a system of property rights can ever exist which completely "internalize negative externalities."

    And, in any case, our current political/legal system most assuredly does not do so.

    Slomin's problem is not that he takes libertarianism and welfare economics too seriously. Rather, he does not take them seriously enough. He has not thought through the entire matter, with all of the real-world complications, and how the theory does indeed deal with such real-world complications.

    Slomin is like a freshman who has learned F=ma and thinks he knows how to design a faster-than-light starship. Not only is life more complicated than that, but so is good theory.

    To put it bluntly, Slomin does not understand either economics or libertarianism. (In fairness, I too was young once and once held views similar to his. Fortunately, I learned more as I grew up. I'm not sure Slomin will.)
    , @Achmed E. Newman
    If you think you "own" any of the public infrastructure, try taking just one swing home from the playground. You may have paid for a whole lot more than that, but the cops will come knocking and wondering if you are nuts, while they're at it. OK, don't like that one? Try telling the parks department that you want them to keep that swingset up... the one they're tearing down due to the lawyers. They don't have to listen to a part-owner. No, they won't give it to you either. I tried to get a nice office chair out of the recycling dumpster after throwing something else in, and the people pitched a fit and threatened to call the cops.

    "Who does not own it must pay for it's usage." Yeah, same for public stuff. How'd you get out of paying property tax, utu?
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  67. Rob McX says:

    Before politics, there was biology, always the prime driving force but only recently explained and understood. A better way of deciding what kind of political system you should have would be to ask the question: “Will my descendants and my ethnic group be still around 100 years from now?” The ideology that assures an affirmative answer is the right one. Whites are the only race who fall for this nation-wrecking “libertarian” sophistry of the type that Somin is peddling.

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  68. Pericles says:

    1 of them votes to kick them out of the country because he’s a decent human being

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  69. Lot says:
    @ben tillman

    When we close borders, we aren’t doing the same thing as putting fences around our houses.
     
    Yes, we are doing exactly the same thing.

    Suppose there is a neighborhood made up of 10 landowners. 8 out of 10 of them vote to keep out all foreigners. 1 out of 10, Larry, votes to let them in because he wants to rent his house to them. 1 of them votes to let them in because he’s a decent human being, but he doesn’t himself plan to rent his house. When the 8 put up a fence around the neighborhood, they don’t merely keep immigrants off their own property. Rather, they keep the immigrants off Larry’s property, against his will.
     
    Idiotic. If the members of a household or a co-op disagree, the desire of one dissenter triumphs over the desires over the others? The vote of one shareholder who wants to give away corporate assets trumps the votes of all other shareholders? Even though the dissenter is the aggressor?

    No, the new guy in the household or the new citizen or the owner of newly issued stock dilutes the ownership interest of the others. As a matter of law, unless the co-owners have agreed on some other method of addressing such issues, the owners whose property value is being prospectively diminished must agree unanimously that the dilution of their ownership share is more than offset by the new value the newcomer will contribute.

    It is funny how I have never, ever, ever, as a 10+ year reader of isteve and kausfiles and frequent reader of other sources, never seen an immigration restrictionist say a nation is like a house.

    Somin, as a libertarian academic, could have addressed his fellow libertarian academic Hans Herman Hoppe’s restrictionism moral-political justification. Or our own SS’s citizenism and analogy to not a house, but a nice suburb. Or Japan’s successful no immigration model. Or Kaus and Bojas’s concerns about immigration-driven economic inequality causing political and cultural degradation.

    No, instead he makes up a strawman argument about a house that isn’t even a good strawman and remotely similar to any real argument. Then he makes up his own really stupid analogy to a ten house community!

    I think Ben you make a mistake even accepting his stupid and abtract premise for the sake of refuting it.

    Somin and the Kochs, out of ideological fanaticism and greed, want to destroy America by importing tens or hundreds of millions African and Muslim savages. They want the destruction of our common lands, our schools, our churches, our traditions, and our form of government.

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    • Replies: @AnotherDad

    Somin and the Kochs, out of ideological fanaticism and greed, want to destroy America by importing tens or hundreds of millions African and Muslim savages. They want the destruction of our common lands, our schools, our churches, our traditions, and our form of government.
     
    Damn straight! Well said Lot. I'm ready. Send me over the top, i'll give those bastards what for!
    , @Chrisnonymous
    Well, it's not true that no one makes the house analogy. I've seen it before and even used it. It's quite effective if used in the right way. For example, an ESL discussion class got onto the topic of immigration, and one of the leftists started going on and on about how Japan doesn't have the right to refrain from sharing its prosperity. I asked him if he was going to invite all the newcomers into his home as well. Everyone laughed, and it shut down his grandstanding. It's a weak analogy but not useless.

    It's also distinct from the neighborhood fence analogy, and I'm glad you mentioned that. I think you're the first commenter here to do so. Even Steve didn't comment on Somin's elision of two different analogies. I hate that kind of sophistry, and it's rampant on TV talk shows.
    , @ben tillman

    It is funny how I have never, ever, ever, as a 10+ year reader of isteve and kausfiles and frequent reader of other sources, never seen an immigration restrictionist say a nation is like a house.

    ***

    I think Ben you make a mistake even accepting his stupid and abtract premise for the sake of refuting it.
     

    The "You're a hypocrite for supporting mass immigration while excluding people from your house" argument has been made a million times on this blog and elsewhere. I don't know how you've overlooked it.

    It's a good argument, because there is no principled distinction between a house and a country.

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  70. In reality, property rights exist at multiple levels and people who don’t understand that are usually seen as cranks. Except when the topic is immigration.

    The banality of evil.

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  71. Lot says:
    @International Jew
    Ugh, I wish they could find someone smarter than Tucker Carlson.

    What? While it is a low bar, Tucker has the bravest and best political show on TV.

    Read More
    • Agree: Autochthon
    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar


    Ugh, I wish they could find someone smarter than Tucker Carlson
     
    What? While it is a low bar, Tucker has the bravest and best political show on TV.
     
    Perhaps by "smarter", IJ is referring to his sartorial tastes.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3424885/How-vengeful-Trump-left-crass-voicemail-political-pundit-mocked-bouffant.html

    http://www.benarment.com/.a/6a00d83451dccb69e200e553f5a6db8833-pi

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4299122/Tucker-Carlson-tells-Jorge-Ramos-whiter-am.html

    , @International Jew
    Ok, I'll give him credit for the "brave" part (no small thing in our day). But whenever I click on one of those Youtube clips entitled something like "Tucker Carlson pwns flaming liberal" I'm disappointed to see ol' Tucker missing opportunity after opportunity.

    He's no sharper than Megyn Kelly, his predecessor, and he doesn't have her legs.

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  72. @Steve Sailer
    The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.

    And the vast majority live under zoning, except in Houston, where HOAs are common.

    Right.

    National sovereignty is to the political as corporate governance is to the professional as
    Mom & Pop home ownership is to the personal.

    It’s a scaled up version of the joint property rights principle. Incomprehensible to the WaPo.

    The “vast majority” of Americans, and others who have a stake in Anglo jurisdictions, live in countries where the democratic nation state acts as agent for the principals – the native citizens – in the ownership and management of public assets eg commonwealth property

    This includes
    public space (parks, border areas)
    public businesses (US Mail) and
    public order (police, judicial army),
    public infrastructure (roads, bridges)
    public services (health education)

    Notice the common denominator?

    Elections are biennial shareholders meetings where the owners get to vote on competing management teams. Exactly as co-op members get to vote on the Body Corp9rate. With the proviso that all citizens have one, and only one, vote. Thus ensuring a basic egalitarianism in governance in accordance with utilitarianism – “each is to count for one, and none more than one”.

    All of this is elementary principal-agent theory that one learns as national civics 101. Yet it has been unlearned by media-academia apologists for globalism.

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  73. eah says:
    @eah
    https://s26.postimg.cc/tv32u6evt/per_capita_lifetime_budgetary_impact.jpg

    OT

    But another interesting graph about money — I wonder: What is the racial makeup of IL public employees? — it is known the pension obligations of the Chicago school system contribute significantly to the general public pension problem in IL — and there almost 60% of the staff are either black or Hispanic.

    Read More
    • Replies: @AnotherDad
    The pension debacle is one of those things which really deserves a Constitutional amendment to fix.

    Politicians should never be able to promise spending beyond their term in office. Public employees should not get defined benefit pensions--ever. (Note, i don't think anyone should really be getting them, this is probably a good rule for corporate execs and labor contracts.) If a politician wants public employees to have good pensions, that money should be delivered--to their pension fund--right then and there. And the politician then faces the voters, the taxpayers who can transparently assess his use of funds.
    , @LG5
    The obvious policy solution is to match up that graph with the Most Important Graph In The World! Import Africans and a few others, they work, raise families, strengthen neighborhoods and contribute to pensions, so all is well. /s

    That is what our policy mavens in Washington and New York, but perhaps not so many in Illinois, would tell us.

    But another interesting graph about money — I wonder: What is the racial makeup of IL public employees? — it is known the pension obligations of the Chicago school system contribute significantly to the general public pension problem in IL — and there almost 60% of the staff are either black or Hispanic.
     
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  74. Anonym says:

    It is funny how I have never, ever, ever, as a 10+ year reader of isteve and kausfiles and frequent reader of other sources, never seen an immigration restrictionist say a nation is like a house.

    To be honest, I think I’ve said, if someone like Bob Geldof loves refugees so much, why does he not house them in his mansion? If I haven’t said it, I’ve thought it, and others have expressed similar.

    But then, I try to argue from good faith. If someone is arguing from bad faith (as Somin is), you use the list of logical fallacies as a playbook.

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  75. Of course my argument based on principal-agent theory is a well accepted ideological theory of corporate governance of the state.

    But more fundamental than the state is the nation- that is, the blood, sweat and tears of our ancestral population, that were shed for their descendants

    This is an ethnological reality that globalists are also most anxious to deny in all it’s forms of race, religion and ruler.

    So really we are seeing a double-barrelled intellectual attack on both the nation and the state or the nation state as we know it. I guess it’s just a coincidence that the attack on nationalism and state sovereignty are happening simultaneously.

    Politics is the biggest business And AI will soon enough make it the only business. Pretty clearly there are forces abroad that seek to rob you of your birth right.

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    • Replies: @Anonymous
    No poor bastard was ever drafted into the military to fight, die - or worse to be left permanently disabled - for pompous libertarian erroneous 'principles'.

    No. They fought, died, killed and were injured for *their country*.

    People like Somin are, in reality, shitting on every soldier whoever fought and died in a war.

    'You were chumps!' says Somin!

    'Ha ha ha!' You don't think that your political masters ever seriously believed in all that shit about 'your country' do you?'

    'Now fuck off and die, and let me bring in my pakis'.
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  76. Twinkie says:

    Note that in Somin’s Koch Brothers-subsidized mental universe, hereditary voting rights are bad, but hereditary wealth is very, very good.

    Short, sweet, and to the point. Kudos, Mr. Sailer.

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    • Agree: Johann Ricke, TomSchmidt
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  77. But it can also justify all kinds of repressive government policies that target natives, as well. If a state has the same powers over land within the national territory as a homeowner has over her house, then the state has broad power to suppress speech and religion the rulers disapprove of.

    It’s trivially true that an immigration restriction society can be repressive. For example Australia ran a White Australia policy for 50 years (1901-1947). Who can forget how that unfortunate nation was plunged into totalitarian gloom for that period, with no freedom whatsoever for anyone.

    Oh wait a minute, that was in Bizarro world. In actual fact Australia in the first half of 20th C was widely seen as a model progressive country for political and legal rights (voting for women, social legislation, award wages). Not to mention the highest ratio of homeownership in the world.

    It turns out that cultural cohesion can actually promote individual liberty. Maybe that’s why the United Kingdom and the United States and the Commonwealth of Australia are okay?

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  78. Mr. Blank says:

    Wow, that’s such a bad argument, I’m surprised the Washington Post bothered to publish it. If that’s the best they can come up with, they must be desperate. I’d actually be embarrassed if somebody pushing for a proposal I agreed with made such a shoddy argument.

    True story: There’s this woman I know who is constantly bashing NAFTA, but also hates Trump. And she’s always twisting herself into pretzels to try to explain how Trump — the most solidly anti-NAFTA major politician in America, in either party — is actually helping NAFTA, or making it worse. As best I can understand it, the essence of her argument is that Trump wants to fight globalism as a way of helping Americans, when the goal of anti-globalism is supposed to be to punish Americans for their sins. Or something. She doesn’t put it in precisely those words, but that’s clearly where her heart is.

    Anyway, for some reason, reading this made me think of that woman. I guess because it’s sort of the same thing: When you dishonestly use facially neutral arguments to advance a frankly partisan agenda, then somebody else comes along and then uses the exact same reasoning to push for their own partisan agenda, you’re faced with either A) dropping the mask and stating your actual position in stark terms; or B) making increasingly ridiculous arguments in hopes that dumber folks won’t notice.

    Trump seems to inspire a lot of both reactions. I’m coming around to the view that this really is premeditated on his part; tricking his opponents into saying or doing things that reveal too much really does seem central to his approach to politics. I’d be curious to see what kind of poker player he is.

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    • Replies: @Cloudbuster
    I’d be curious to see what kind of poker player he is.

    My money's on "amazing."
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  79. On can gain insight into the crux of most political debates with a simple question:

    Who is coercing whom?

    At root, usually someone is trying to take something from someone else, making them work for someone else, etc. etc. For example, this is how i knew as adolescent that the communists really were the bad guys–not just my government’s propaganda. The commies built fences and wouldn’t let their people leave.

    So simple thought experiment: Let’s say little Ilya gets his most fond wish, and all the world’s governments dropped their border controls, just got out of the way, let people enter at will and in fact dispose of their property however they liked. What would happen?

    I think we all know. Almost immediately people would start banding together, to make communities of like minded–same language, customs, moral understandings, race, religion–and *voluntarily* agree to keep other people out. Why? Because their lives would be better! The future for their families would be better. And even–put in Ilya terms–their property would actually be more valuable by everyone agreeing to restriction, because it would be nicer. (Yes, much like your country clubs, HOA agreements, gated communities, etc.)

    Some of this exclusion would stay small–our street, our neighborhood, our town. But most of it would quickly scale up–because of the positive synergies/economies of scale and ethnic affinity–to regional groupings. And in many places the process would quickly recreate essentially the same nation state–all voluntarily with people freely ceding their right to invite in foreigners.

    The world Ilya Somin dreams of is one that can only exist via a deeply coercive super-state that keeps people from voluntarily organizing to protect their neighborhoods and nation.

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    • Replies: @Big Bill

    Some of this exclusion would stay small–our street, our neighborhood, our town. But most of it would quickly scale up–because of the positive synergies/economies of scale and ethnic affinity–to regional groupings. And in many places the process would quickly recreate essentially the same nation state–all voluntarily with people freely ceding their right to invite in foreigners.
     
    This is precisely what happened in the USA after de jure segregation [i.e. segregation laws] was declared illegal. People then started putting racial and religious restrictive covenants on their property and thereby voluntarily "ceded their rights" to sell to other religions/races.

    Unfortunately, this "ceding their rights" arrangement is exactly what Shelley v. Kraemer (USSC 1948) struck down. To be a bit more precise, the USSC said that US courts cannot enforce racially exclusive covenants that run with the land. If a subsequent owner ever decided to violate the covenant and sell to a prohibited person, the surrounding land owners could not take him to court and enforce the covenant.

    The decision by the USSC suggests that there may be other ways to achieve the same goals. Even if the courts will not enforce covenants, there may be other contractual, ownership, or dispute resolution means to achieve the same restrictive effect.

    For example, do what the Jews do in Israel and have the official landowner be a white goy version of the Jewish National Fund, which leases all its land in Israel only to Jews.

    Many Jews in the USA fondly remember the little blue JNF donation boxes they kept in their homes to buy up goy land in Palestine.
    , @The Anti-Gnostic
    It's pretty clear that only the State can maintain Open Borders. Without the State and its Title VII and public roads and due process, "immigrants" would mostly be shot as trespassers or die of exposure in wilderness areas. Libertarian society would work out like Deadwood, Dakota Territory. No State around to issue Pride Parade permits or protect your right to build high-rise apartments and plug them in to the public utilities and infrastructure for fees that don't even approach the actual cost.

    Modern libertarian thought is dominated by Catholic universalists and Ashkenazi Jews and they have to police the bounds of debate very rigorously to keep all the obvious questions safely unexplored. Classic entryist behavior.
    , @Rob McX

    Let’s say little Ilya gets his most fond wish, and all the world’s governments dropped their border controls, just got out of the way, let people enter at will and in fact dispose of their property however they liked. What would happen?

    I think we all know. Almost immediately people would start banding together, to make communities of like minded–same language, customs, moral understandings, race, religion–and *voluntarily* agree to keep other people out.
     

    True. An open borders world would only be a transitional stage, before the population regroups into ethnically-based nations. It would mean destroying nations that were built up over centuries only to have them rebuilt from scratch with massive bloodshed and suffering. What people like Somin are hoping for is that white countries (the only ones to fall for this open borders poison) will be destroyed beyond the point of rebuilding.
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  80. Tyrion 2 says: • Website

    Restated in this way, the house analogy could indeed potentially justify almost any immigration restrictions a government might choose to set up. But it can also justify all kinds of repressive government policies that target natives, as well

    Yes, Ilya, governments have the ability to take people’s money (tax), stop them having fun (prohibition) and literally imprison them.

    Ability might not equal justification but that’s the real world for you.

    This is precisely why having the people feel and exert ownership over their government is crucial and why a common culture and high degree of sympathy among the population is a necessity. Yet your open borders undermines these and leads to tyranny.

    Tightly controlled borders and the national government as a collectively owned institution may not be strict libertarian dogma but they are prerequisites for strict libertarian dogma to be respected in any way at all.

    You don’t seem to understand that the government and the nation are institutions. That they need owners to be cared for and that those owners need to not hate each other. Everyone used to understand this. This is why the nation-state was the midwife to classical liberalism.

    And, whisper it quietly Ilya, but can you not help but notice that not all people seem to have the same propensity to accept your libertarian rationale?

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  81. @eah
    OT

    But another interesting graph about money -- I wonder: What is the racial makeup of IL public employees? -- it is known the pension obligations of the Chicago school system contribute significantly to the general public pension problem in IL -- and there almost 60% of the staff are either black or Hispanic.

    https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/G1-pension.png

    The pension debacle is one of those things which really deserves a Constitutional amendment to fix.

    Politicians should never be able to promise spending beyond their term in office. Public employees should not get defined benefit pensions–ever. (Note, i don’t think anyone should really be getting them, this is probably a good rule for corporate execs and labor contracts.) If a politician wants public employees to have good pensions, that money should be delivered–to their pension fund–right then and there. And the politician then faces the voters, the taxpayers who can transparently assess his use of funds.

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    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    This stuff is a problem at the state and local level, hence a Constitutional Amendment should have nothing to do with it. Now, state constitutions, on the other hand ....

    This brings up a slightly OT point (well, off-topic to your comment's topic) that there is a reason that the public pension problems are not occurring at the US Federal level. The FEDS can just print more money. The States can't ... which is a very good thing .... but, yeah, don't count on seeing all that pension money they promised you. I have a friend who retired from our State's government from a legit occupation. I couldn't tell her, because it's not really my business, but do wish she would take some kind of lump sum payment now.
    , @International Jew
    Public employee pensions are, by design, a way to deceive the public about what they're actually paying gov't workers. Anyone can understand cash, but it takes an actuary to figure out what a pension is worth. (Or if not a certified actuary, someone who understands expected present value better than do most of the MBAs I've met.)
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  82. @Lot
    It is funny how I have never, ever, ever, as a 10+ year reader of isteve and kausfiles and frequent reader of other sources, never seen an immigration restrictionist say a nation is like a house.

    Somin, as a libertarian academic, could have addressed his fellow libertarian academic Hans Herman Hoppe's restrictionism moral-political justification. Or our own SS's citizenism and analogy to not a house, but a nice suburb. Or Japan's successful no immigration model. Or Kaus and Bojas's concerns about immigration-driven economic inequality causing political and cultural degradation.

    No, instead he makes up a strawman argument about a house that isn't even a good strawman and remotely similar to any real argument. Then he makes up his own really stupid analogy to a ten house community!

    I think Ben you make a mistake even accepting his stupid and abtract premise for the sake of refuting it.

    Somin and the Kochs, out of ideological fanaticism and greed, want to destroy America by importing tens or hundreds of millions African and Muslim savages. They want the destruction of our common lands, our schools, our churches, our traditions, and our form of government.

    Somin and the Kochs, out of ideological fanaticism and greed, want to destroy America by importing tens or hundreds of millions African and Muslim savages. They want the destruction of our common lands, our schools, our churches, our traditions, and our form of government.

    Damn straight! Well said Lot. I’m ready. Send me over the top, i’ll give those bastards what for!

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    • Replies: @Lot
    No need for heroics just yet. Just never miss an election, make sure you become several times over AnotherGrandad, and support Steve and Center for Immigration Studies and Ann Corcoran* when you can!

    (*Just my semi-informed opinion on where you get the best bang for your anti-migration buck. While I appreciate much of their work, PB's salary at vdare seems quite excessive and I don't see them making much of an impact outside of preaching to the choir. Krikorian and CIS serve the very valuable role of countering the billionaire-funded attempts to get the GOP to embrace mass migration. And Corcoran does so much all by herself fighting the absolute worst third world migration program. https://mobile.twitter.com/RefugeeWatcher )
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  83. Big Bill says:

    Somin, with his arguments for private property and free alienation of land is recycling elements of the “Big 4″ Jewish brief from Shelley v. Kramer (1948), which argued against the enforcement of racially restrictive covenants:

    https://archive.org/details/ConsolidatedBriefAmicusCuraieShelleyVKraemer

    The “Big 4″ were the American Jewish Committee, the ADL, the Jewish Labor Committee, and the Jewish War Veterans of the USA.

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  84. @AndrewR
    I'm not sure what's worse: Somin implying that advocates of immigration restriction are uniformly "not decent people", or her[?] use of "whoever" as an object.

    Ilya is a man’s name. Didn’t you ever watch “The Man From UNCLE”?

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    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    Father, AndrewR was talking about this paragraph, in which Mr. cure for inSominia puts in a random feminine pronoun in replace of standard English:

    But it can also justify all kinds of repressive government policies that target natives, as well. If a state has the same powers over land within the national territory as a homeowner has over her house, ...
     
    Are these random feminine pronouns used to get female approval for the publishing of papers? Otherwise it reads just plain stupidly.

    Anyway, Andrew, I was going to mention this first thing. I'm kind of late in commenting on this article, but, as a Libertarian, what matters is what people were coerced into doing vs. contracting about freely.

    Re: one of Steve's examples: It's a tough call if there were no HOA in place when the abscent landlord inherited his property, but that should have been hashed out when they formed it. There are ways to deal with all of this stuff without involving governments, except in the functioning of civil courts of law. The reduction in the inheritor's property value due to being placed under HOA rules could have resulted in a payment to him. OTOH, if he were to try to rent to 18 beaners, then that reduces the value of the neighborhood, so the rest should be compensated (or the HOA rule stands). I'm no lawyer but they LUV, LUV, LUV this stuff.
    , @Hibernian
    Ilya Kuryakin.
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  85. Tyrion 2 says: • Website
    @Steve Sailer
    Readers in the Comments bring up the house argument. Somin feels besieged by comments that disagree with him.

    I listened to an interview with David Brooks recently where he mentioned the comments and email correspondence that he receives.

    I’d always thought that writers would take this stuff with a pinch of salt – it’s the internet after all.

    Instead, Brooks recounted how he had previously been forced by his own emotional state to give reading them to an intern (at the time, Reihan Salam) but then the intern was similarly brought low and they had to avoid them altogether.

    Brooks seems like quite a sensitive guy but he also sounded devastated recounting this.

    To what extent has the progressive lurch of mainstream media writers in the last few years been an emotional reaction to the ludicrous avalanche of hate mail sent to them? Perhaps the trolls don’t realise the collective effect they are having?

    Receiving one, “I’m glad we gassed your Grandma” joke a month may actually be bracing and allow the receiver to understand how their writing might sometimes be perceived.

    Receiving a hundred copy and pasted similar threats/jokes a day is never going to help with moderation and emotional distance.

    The outsider only hears the man with the megaphone. The man with the megaphone only hears the troll voices screeching and shouting in his ear.

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    • Replies: @Benjaminl
    On the other hand, someone in Brooks's circle is getting through to him, apparently through face-to-face conversation (emphasis added):

    https://medium.com/conversations-with-tyler/david-brooks-tyler-cowen-religion-plurality-loneliness-new-york-times-diversity-eb051a4b47cc

    Yeah, well, I happen to know a lot of Trump voters of the 18-to-24 age group, and some of it is sort of rebellion against liberal professors, but a lot of it is a pretty thought-through view of what constitutes community. And I’ve had it argued to me many times that my view of community, which is about pluralism and cosmopolitanism, is attenuated and unrealistic.

    And that they generally do argue, and I’ve had it said many times to me, that “You just can’t think there’s such thing as diversity and community at the same time, that these two sit in much greater tension than you’re willing to acknowledge. I’m willing to face the reality that diverse societies tend to be attenuated societies with low social trust. I’m willing to adopt the policies that are consistent with that, and you’re not.”

    I disagree with that argument, but it’s not an argument without merit. So the young voters I’ve interviewed or have known personally, they’ve got some philosophical background to what they’re thinking.
     
    , @Svigor

    I listened to an interview with David Brooks recently where he mentioned the comments and email correspondence that he receives.

    I’d always thought that writers would take this stuff with a pinch of salt – it’s the internet after all.

    Instead, Brooks recounted how he had previously been forced by his own emotional state to give reading them to an intern (at the time, Reihan Salam) but then the intern was similarly brought low and they had to avoid them altogether.

    Brooks seems like quite a sensitive guy but he also sounded devastated recounting this.
     
    I assume it's a combination. You have some glib sociopaths, and some finely-tuned neurotics. Brooks definitely seems like a finely-tuned neurotic. Do you think it's easy, living in a bubble so opposing arguments never touch your delicate snowflakes of bullshit? Do you have any idea how hard it is believing your own transparent lies? The Socratic Method is like acid, dude.
    , @Daniel Chieh
    Oh, I feel so bad for Brooks now.
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  86. In reality, property rights exist at multiple levels and people who don’t understand that are usually seen as cranks. Except when the topic is immigration.

    Just try and let your lawn go “prairie”, and see what happens.

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  87. Rather, they keep the immigrants off Larry’s property, against his will.

    And out of the local ER, where we, not Larry, will pay the bill. Against our will.

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  88. Big Bill says:
    @AnotherDad
    On can gain insight into the crux of most political debates with a simple question:

    Who is coercing whom?

    At root, usually someone is trying to take something from someone else, making them work for someone else, etc. etc. For example, this is how i knew as adolescent that the communists really were the bad guys--not just my government's propaganda. The commies built fences and wouldn't let their people leave.

    So simple thought experiment: Let's say little Ilya gets his most fond wish, and all the world's governments dropped their border controls, just got out of the way, let people enter at will and in fact dispose of their property however they liked. What would happen?

    I think we all know. Almost immediately people would start banding together, to make communities of like minded--same language, customs, moral understandings, race, religion--and *voluntarily* agree to keep other people out. Why? Because their lives would be better! The future for their families would be better. And even--put in Ilya terms--their property would actually be more valuable by everyone agreeing to restriction, because it would be nicer. (Yes, much like your country clubs, HOA agreements, gated communities, etc.)

    Some of this exclusion would stay small--our street, our neighborhood, our town. But most of it would quickly scale up--because of the positive synergies/economies of scale and ethnic affinity--to regional groupings. And in many places the process would quickly recreate essentially the same nation state--all voluntarily with people freely ceding their right to invite in foreigners.

    The world Ilya Somin dreams of is one that can only exist via a deeply coercive super-state that keeps people from voluntarily organizing to protect their neighborhoods and nation.

    Some of this exclusion would stay small–our street, our neighborhood, our town. But most of it would quickly scale up–because of the positive synergies/economies of scale and ethnic affinity–to regional groupings. And in many places the process would quickly recreate essentially the same nation state–all voluntarily with people freely ceding their right to invite in foreigners.

    This is precisely what happened in the USA after de jure segregation [i.e. segregation laws] was declared illegal. People then started putting racial and religious restrictive covenants on their property and thereby voluntarily “ceded their rights” to sell to other religions/races.

    Unfortunately, this “ceding their rights” arrangement is exactly what Shelley v. Kraemer (USSC 1948) struck down. To be a bit more precise, the USSC said that US courts cannot enforce racially exclusive covenants that run with the land. If a subsequent owner ever decided to violate the covenant and sell to a prohibited person, the surrounding land owners could not take him to court and enforce the covenant.

    The decision by the USSC suggests that there may be other ways to achieve the same goals. Even if the courts will not enforce covenants, there may be other contractual, ownership, or dispute resolution means to achieve the same restrictive effect.

    For example, do what the Jews do in Israel and have the official landowner be a white goy version of the Jewish National Fund, which leases all its land in Israel only to Jews.

    Many Jews in the USA fondly remember the little blue JNF donation boxes they kept in their homes to buy up goy land in Palestine.

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    • Replies: @Hibernian
    Covenants were abolished in 1948 so they presumably began before that. De jure segrgation was not declared unconstitutional except in very limited contexts (state graduate and professional schools) until 1954. It may be that the covenants were alternatives to de jure segregation in such places as "The Land of Lincoln," of which I am a citizen. (I believe one landmark anti-covenant case concerned property in Chicago about 1 1/2 to 2 miles from where I live.)
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  89. @Anon7
    “...immigration restrictions abrogate the rights of property owners who want to rent their property to the excluded migrants, associate with them, or employ them on their land.”

    Finally, a public intellectual who recognizes my right to rent my three extra bedrooms to a Somalian anarchist bomb-maker, an Mexican MS13 gang member, and a Chechen Muslim terrorist. It’s not like the US government has any powers that supersede mine vis a vis relationships with foreign governments or foreign nationals.

    Oh wait. In Ekiu v. United States (1892), the SCOTUS held that, “It is an accepted maxim of international law that every sovereign nation has the power, as inherent in sovereignty, and essential to self-preservation, to forbid the entrance of foreigners within its dominions, or to admit them only in such cases and upon such conditions as it may see fit to prescribe.

    Finally, a public intellectual who recognizes my right to rent my three extra bedrooms to a Somalian anarchist bomb-make…

    Anagrams for Ilya Somin:

    Somali yin.
    My liaison.

    Though, to be fair, Somali radicals tend to irredentism (a concept alien to the Somins of the world) and treat their weaponry as remittances, ie, something to send home to the clan.

    It’s the Arabs and the Pakis you have to keep your eyes on. Oh, yeah, and the Chechens.

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  90. Note how Gordon Lightfoot contradicts himself here:

    Beware of the darkness, be kind to your children
    Remember the woman who waits
    And the house you live in will never fall down
    If you pity the stranger who stands at your gate

    Beware of strange faces and dark dingy places
    Be careful while bending the law
    And the house you live in will never fall down
    If you pity the stranger who stands at your door

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    • Replies: @AnotherDad
    He's Canadian, a people fortunate enough to have their only border--settled 170 back-- with a fellow Anglo-sphere nation, that was more prosperous and free. That has enabled Canadians to entertain even more silly fairytale notions than most folks.

    Of course, they've proceeded to squander that amazing birthright and invite the stranger inside. That's what living in a fairytales does.
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  91. Anonymous[327] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack Strocchi
    Of course my argument based on principal-agent theory is a well accepted ideological theory of corporate governance of the state.

    But more fundamental than the state is the nation- that is, the blood, sweat and tears of our ancestral population, that were shed for their descendants

    This is an ethnological reality that globalists are also most anxious to deny in all it’s forms of race, religion and ruler.

    So really we are seeing a double-barrelled intellectual attack on both the nation and the state or the nation state as we know it. I guess it’s just a coincidence that the attack on nationalism and state sovereignty are happening simultaneously.

    Politics is the biggest business And AI will soon enough make it the only business. Pretty clearly there are forces abroad that seek to rob you of your birth right.

    No poor bastard was ever drafted into the military to fight, die – or worse to be left permanently disabled – for pompous libertarian erroneous ‘principles’.

    No. They fought, died, killed and were injured for *their country*.

    People like Somin are, in reality, shitting on every soldier whoever fought and died in a war.

    ‘You were chumps!’ says Somin!

    ‘Ha ha ha!’ You don’t think that your political masters ever seriously believed in all that shit about ‘your country’ do you?’

    ‘Now fuck off and die, and let me bring in my pakis’.

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    • Replies: @Hibernian
    I think Revolutionary War veterans fought and died for a mild form of libertarianism (think of the Stamp Act, Navigation Act, etc.) and for their homes and kinfolk (think of the quartering of troops in private homes and the Boston Massacre.) The war since then have tended to be of the "War is a Racket" variety.
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  92. @Lot
    It is funny how I have never, ever, ever, as a 10+ year reader of isteve and kausfiles and frequent reader of other sources, never seen an immigration restrictionist say a nation is like a house.

    Somin, as a libertarian academic, could have addressed his fellow libertarian academic Hans Herman Hoppe's restrictionism moral-political justification. Or our own SS's citizenism and analogy to not a house, but a nice suburb. Or Japan's successful no immigration model. Or Kaus and Bojas's concerns about immigration-driven economic inequality causing political and cultural degradation.

    No, instead he makes up a strawman argument about a house that isn't even a good strawman and remotely similar to any real argument. Then he makes up his own really stupid analogy to a ten house community!

    I think Ben you make a mistake even accepting his stupid and abtract premise for the sake of refuting it.

    Somin and the Kochs, out of ideological fanaticism and greed, want to destroy America by importing tens or hundreds of millions African and Muslim savages. They want the destruction of our common lands, our schools, our churches, our traditions, and our form of government.

    Well, it’s not true that no one makes the house analogy. I’ve seen it before and even used it. It’s quite effective if used in the right way. For example, an ESL discussion class got onto the topic of immigration, and one of the leftists started going on and on about how Japan doesn’t have the right to refrain from sharing its prosperity. I asked him if he was going to invite all the newcomers into his home as well. Everyone laughed, and it shut down his grandstanding. It’s a weak analogy but not useless.

    It’s also distinct from the neighborhood fence analogy, and I’m glad you mentioned that. I think you’re the first commenter here to do so. Even Steve didn’t comment on Somin’s elision of two different analogies. I hate that kind of sophistry, and it’s rampant on TV talk shows.

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    • Replies: @Anonymous
    'Property rights' like all 'rights' only have a meaning if they can actually be enforced - which in the final analysis equates to overwhelming state violence.

    A 'land claim' in a hypothetical wilderness and away from government only means anything if the stakers of the claim are able to defend it successfully - with appropriate violence against a gang of thieves wishing to usurp it. Something our medieval ancestors knew only too well - but something that Angela Merkel, the EU and The Economist judge to be the ultimate anathema.

    Hence the 'house analogy' when we speak of the geographical territory of a nation being the 'national home' of a people, and the 'people' thus defined being citizens and voters - and ultimately the collective guardians - of their 'house' or national home.
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  93. @utu
    In the libertarian utopia there is no public infrastructure. Who does not own it must pay for its usage.

    Why would there be no public infrastructure? Libertarianism calls for a small state, not no state. A lot of so-called libertarians seem to take a leap straight into anarchism, which is a far different and even more juvenile philosophy, without even bothering to note that they’ve made the leap.

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    • Replies: @stillCARealist
    I've never known a libertarian whose primary motivation wasn't drugs and sex (and porn). See, once you abandon tradition, precedent, and culture for your foundation then social anarchism starts to make sense. Marriage civilizes this to a great extent, which is why libertarians are perfectly happy to see marriage wither away on the vine. Sobriety helps too, and libertarians hate sobriety.

    As you can tell, my experience with libertarians hasn't been all that positive. alas.
    , @utu
    juvenile philosophy. - Correct except that there is no non juvenile libertarianism.
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  94. @Mr. Blank
    Wow, that’s such a bad argument, I’m surprised the Washington Post bothered to publish it. If that’s the best they can come up with, they must be desperate. I’d actually be embarrassed if somebody pushing for a proposal I agreed with made such a shoddy argument.

    True story: There’s this woman I know who is constantly bashing NAFTA, but also hates Trump. And she’s always twisting herself into pretzels to try to explain how Trump — the most solidly anti-NAFTA major politician in America, in either party — is actually helping NAFTA, or making it worse. As best I can understand it, the essence of her argument is that Trump wants to fight globalism as a way of helping Americans, when the goal of anti-globalism is supposed to be to punish Americans for their sins. Or something. She doesn’t put it in precisely those words, but that’s clearly where her heart is.

    Anyway, for some reason, reading this made me think of that woman. I guess because it’s sort of the same thing: When you dishonestly use facially neutral arguments to advance a frankly partisan agenda, then somebody else comes along and then uses the exact same reasoning to push for their own partisan agenda, you’re faced with either A) dropping the mask and stating your actual position in stark terms; or B) making increasingly ridiculous arguments in hopes that dumber folks won’t notice.

    Trump seems to inspire a lot of both reactions. I’m coming around to the view that this really is premeditated on his part; tricking his opponents into saying or doing things that reveal too much really does seem central to his approach to politics. I’d be curious to see what kind of poker player he is.

    I’d be curious to see what kind of poker player he is.

    My money’s on “amazing.”

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  95. slumber_j says:
    @anony-mouse
    Aren't you 'proving' Somin wrong by using exceptions to the rule? The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner's associations.

    Also Somin is a libertarian, and libertarians minimize 'externatlities' in general (see pollution). Of course if you talk about 'externalities' a lot you might as well abolish private property period and join the DSA.

    In deploying the fence analogy, Somin ignores a fundamental thing about how real property works in our society.

    The default setting on whether or not someone can come on my land is, technically, “yes”–although mostly people don’t actually behave that way. Both the owner of my land and non-owners of my land generally agree that anyone I don’t explicitly invite onto it is excluded…in all but the strict legal sense.

    But by the simple addition of “No Trespassing” or “No Hunting” signs, I can easily flip that switch to a hard legal “no”–which is what plenty of people do all the time once non-owners of their property start violating the exclusionary social convention.

    I can always add a fence to make the exclusion even more firm. But I don’t need a fence, and in practice people in the US don’t much go in for that, because they’re protected by laws.

    It doesn’t take all that much philosophizing to recognize this–or to figure out how it might apply to, say, the US border with Mexico. By conflating individual and group rights, Somin blurs the picture. It feels intentional.

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  96. When we close borders, we aren’t doing the same thing as putting fences around our houses. Suppose there is a neighborhood made up of 10 landowners. 8 out of 10 of them vote to keep out all foreigners. 1 out of 10, Larry, votes to let them in because he wants to rent his house to them. 1 of them votes to let them in because he’s a decent human being, but he doesn’t himself plan to rent his house. When the 8 put up a fence around the neighborhood, they don’t merely keep immigrants off their own property. Rather, they keep the immigrants off Larry’s property, against his will.

    Most analogies are imperfect, but this one is particularly stupid.

    Larry and Unnamed Decent Human Being (let’s call him David Koch for the sake of argument) aren’t inviting immigrants to enjoy only their private properties, but to make impositions on the properties of the remaining eight and interfere in their use and enjoyment of their properties.

    In any event, conspicuously absent from Somin’s discussion is Larry’s and David Koch’s employment of measures to persuade the other eight of the benefits of welcoming outsiders generally, or identifying one or two particular outsiders of great merit and persuading the eight that they too will enjoy their company and should make a circumstantial exception to the general rule of exclusion. Also absent is the idea of Larry or David Koch – finding the company of outsiders preferable – moving to be with them and leaving the xenophobes to themselves, and perhaps even building a fence to keep the xenophobes out.

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  97. Elsewhere says:
    @Mactoul
    Conquest isn't theft. Stealing is always wrong because it violates "property is secured by arguments" logic. For if there are arguments then a proposition can be right or wrong.
    Hence "this thing is owned by person A" --this proposition can be true or false. And a person that steals an owned thing does wrong.

    The national territory is simply a land possessed by a nation and secured by the national force of arms. A thing that is secured by arms can be taken away by superior arms. There are no moral arguments per se.

    Oh, yeah? Then why all the screeching about Crimea?

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    • Replies: @Forbes
    Crimea was a part of the Russian Empire (1783) and an autonomous republic of the Soviet Union after the 1917 revolution. In 1954, Khrushchev made it part of the Ukraine Soviet Socialist Republic. It's been a part of Russia much longer than associated with the Ukraine.

    It is home to Russia's Black Sea naval fleet. It's population is majority ethnic Russian (Russian speakers).

    Curiously, Bush (41) and German Chancellor Helmut Kohl promised Russia no eastward expansion of NATO in return for Russia accepting the East & West German reunification.

    All the previous talk of making the Ukraine a NATO member is significantly destabilizing to the region. Why should Russia ascent to a NATO member on its doorstep? Why should the US pursue such a course except to create an unnecessary conflict with Russia?

    The screeching appears historically ignorant--which is usually the case in such "controversies." Like the lawyer that has neither the law or the facts--pound the table for maximum effect.
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  98. George says:

    “8 out of 10 of them vote to keep out all foreigners.”

    What does the controlling document (constitution) say, The Home Owners Association agreement they signed when they took ownership? This is a serious omission for the law guy who insists on making some sort of economics based argument. I think the HOA agreement needs amending.

    Somin could have improved his essay by:

    Discussing Co 0p apartments in NYC and how they approve new ‘cooperators’.

    He might also have taken this opportunity to express his disfavor with the possible changes to the Basic Law of Israel (Allowing all Jewish cities, making the Torah the underlying law of Israel, and eliminating Arabic as an official language).

    Also curious is why he does not discuss migration policy of say China? Was he not informed that China is taking America’s places as the unitary hegemon.

    But the problem with his essay is when people typically trespass on a house, they do not demand the owner provide upkeep for them and possibly their descendants. They do not form a breeding population. There are also local laws preventing large numbers of people squatting, not too mention sanitary and other laws. In short, he does not think through the economics and even physics of migrations.

    PRESIDENT RIVLIN: NATION-STATE BILL ‘LIABLE TO HARM THE JEWISH PEOPLE’
    The president stated that this section may “harm the Jewish people, Jews throughout the world and the State of Israel.”

    https://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/President-Rivlin-Nation-state-bill-liable-to-harm-the-Jewish-people-562127

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  99. @AnotherDad
    On can gain insight into the crux of most political debates with a simple question:

    Who is coercing whom?

    At root, usually someone is trying to take something from someone else, making them work for someone else, etc. etc. For example, this is how i knew as adolescent that the communists really were the bad guys--not just my government's propaganda. The commies built fences and wouldn't let their people leave.

    So simple thought experiment: Let's say little Ilya gets his most fond wish, and all the world's governments dropped their border controls, just got out of the way, let people enter at will and in fact dispose of their property however they liked. What would happen?

    I think we all know. Almost immediately people would start banding together, to make communities of like minded--same language, customs, moral understandings, race, religion--and *voluntarily* agree to keep other people out. Why? Because their lives would be better! The future for their families would be better. And even--put in Ilya terms--their property would actually be more valuable by everyone agreeing to restriction, because it would be nicer. (Yes, much like your country clubs, HOA agreements, gated communities, etc.)

    Some of this exclusion would stay small--our street, our neighborhood, our town. But most of it would quickly scale up--because of the positive synergies/economies of scale and ethnic affinity--to regional groupings. And in many places the process would quickly recreate essentially the same nation state--all voluntarily with people freely ceding their right to invite in foreigners.

    The world Ilya Somin dreams of is one that can only exist via a deeply coercive super-state that keeps people from voluntarily organizing to protect their neighborhoods and nation.

    It’s pretty clear that only the State can maintain Open Borders. Without the State and its Title VII and public roads and due process, “immigrants” would mostly be shot as trespassers or die of exposure in wilderness areas. Libertarian society would work out like Deadwood, Dakota Territory. No State around to issue Pride Parade permits or protect your right to build high-rise apartments and plug them in to the public utilities and infrastructure for fees that don’t even approach the actual cost.

    Modern libertarian thought is dominated by Catholic universalists and Ashkenazi Jews and they have to police the bounds of debate very rigorously to keep all the obvious questions safely unexplored. Classic entryist behavior.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Modern libertarian thought is dominated by Catholic universalists

    I think you'll discover the social overlap between active Catholics and the libertarian nexus is precisely zero. The man who ran the Buckeye Institute many years ago has been in the course of his life a public promoter of libertarian thinking and a promoter of the Church, but not at the same time. He once said he began to leave the libertarian fold twenty years ago when he realized its leading lights generally had one thing in common: childlessness (he had five at last count). The closest you get to a Catholic libertarian is an old school admirer of Calvin Coolidge. The U.S. Catholic Conference and many diocesan chanceries are promoters of what amounts to open borders, not because they take any interest in libertarian thinking, but because the Church in its decadent state hires from the same pool that generic NGOs do. The writer Amy Welborn said many years ago that in decades of traveling the country and seeing the church-o-cracy at work she'd concluded that the main vector motivating them was 'bored-out-of-their-minds-careerism'.
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  100. LG5 says:
    @eah
    OT

    But another interesting graph about money -- I wonder: What is the racial makeup of IL public employees? -- it is known the pension obligations of the Chicago school system contribute significantly to the general public pension problem in IL -- and there almost 60% of the staff are either black or Hispanic.

    https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/G1-pension.png

    The obvious policy solution is to match up that graph with the Most Important Graph In The World! Import Africans and a few others, they work, raise families, strengthen neighborhoods and contribute to pensions, so all is well. /s

    That is what our policy mavens in Washington and New York, but perhaps not so many in Illinois, would tell us.

    But another interesting graph about money — I wonder: What is the racial makeup of IL public employees? — it is known the pension obligations of the Chicago school system contribute significantly to the general public pension problem in IL — and there almost 60% of the staff are either black or Hispanic.

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  101. Rob McX says:
    @AnotherDad
    On can gain insight into the crux of most political debates with a simple question:

    Who is coercing whom?

    At root, usually someone is trying to take something from someone else, making them work for someone else, etc. etc. For example, this is how i knew as adolescent that the communists really were the bad guys--not just my government's propaganda. The commies built fences and wouldn't let their people leave.

    So simple thought experiment: Let's say little Ilya gets his most fond wish, and all the world's governments dropped their border controls, just got out of the way, let people enter at will and in fact dispose of their property however they liked. What would happen?

    I think we all know. Almost immediately people would start banding together, to make communities of like minded--same language, customs, moral understandings, race, religion--and *voluntarily* agree to keep other people out. Why? Because their lives would be better! The future for their families would be better. And even--put in Ilya terms--their property would actually be more valuable by everyone agreeing to restriction, because it would be nicer. (Yes, much like your country clubs, HOA agreements, gated communities, etc.)

    Some of this exclusion would stay small--our street, our neighborhood, our town. But most of it would quickly scale up--because of the positive synergies/economies of scale and ethnic affinity--to regional groupings. And in many places the process would quickly recreate essentially the same nation state--all voluntarily with people freely ceding their right to invite in foreigners.

    The world Ilya Somin dreams of is one that can only exist via a deeply coercive super-state that keeps people from voluntarily organizing to protect their neighborhoods and nation.

    Let’s say little Ilya gets his most fond wish, and all the world’s governments dropped their border controls, just got out of the way, let people enter at will and in fact dispose of their property however they liked. What would happen?

    I think we all know. Almost immediately people would start banding together, to make communities of like minded–same language, customs, moral understandings, race, religion–and *voluntarily* agree to keep other people out.

    True. An open borders world would only be a transitional stage, before the population regroups into ethnically-based nations. It would mean destroying nations that were built up over centuries only to have them rebuilt from scratch with massive bloodshed and suffering. What people like Somin are hoping for is that white countries (the only ones to fall for this open borders poison) will be destroyed beyond the point of rebuilding.

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  102. Rob McX says:

    I see Somin is pushing the case for unrestricted immigration quite a lot. He has a piece here at Open Borders blog explaining the intentions of the Founding Fathers. “The Constitution does not Justify Ignoring the Benefits of Immigration for Immigrants”, he headlines his first argument for open borders.

    Some opponents of immigration claim that the inclusion of the phrase “ourselves and our posterity” suggests that the Constitution was only meant to benefit present US citizens and their descendants, thereby justifying the US government in ignoring the rights and welfare of potential migrants in making decisions on immigration policy. However, the term “posterity,” as used in the Preamble, is probably metaphorical rather than literal…[The framers of the Constitution] knew that millions of immigrants would be among the “posterity” referred to in the Preamble.

    Sorry, America, but “invite the world” was part of the deal from the start.

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    • Replies: @CPK

    Sorry, America, but “invite the world” was part of the deal from the start.
     
    Weird - I've started seeing this claim more recently, presumably an attempt to make open borders the default position or null hypothesis, so it's not necessary to make much of an argument for it.

    Of course, even if the framers anticipated "posterity" would include immigrants, it doesn't follow that this meant every possible immigrant. Nobody at the time, to my knowledge, objected that the restrictions in the 1790 Naturalization Act violated the spirit (much less the letter) of the Constitution.

    So the claim that "our posterity" is "probably metaphorical rather than literal" seems dubious.
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  103. Anonymous[198] • Disclaimer says:
    @Chrisnonymous
    Well, it's not true that no one makes the house analogy. I've seen it before and even used it. It's quite effective if used in the right way. For example, an ESL discussion class got onto the topic of immigration, and one of the leftists started going on and on about how Japan doesn't have the right to refrain from sharing its prosperity. I asked him if he was going to invite all the newcomers into his home as well. Everyone laughed, and it shut down his grandstanding. It's a weak analogy but not useless.

    It's also distinct from the neighborhood fence analogy, and I'm glad you mentioned that. I think you're the first commenter here to do so. Even Steve didn't comment on Somin's elision of two different analogies. I hate that kind of sophistry, and it's rampant on TV talk shows.

    ‘Property rights’ like all ‘rights’ only have a meaning if they can actually be enforced – which in the final analysis equates to overwhelming state violence.

    A ‘land claim’ in a hypothetical wilderness and away from government only means anything if the stakers of the claim are able to defend it successfully – with appropriate violence against a gang of thieves wishing to usurp it. Something our medieval ancestors knew only too well – but something that Angela Merkel, the EU and The Economist judge to be the ultimate anathema.

    Hence the ‘house analogy’ when we speak of the geographical territory of a nation being the ‘national home’ of a people, and the ‘people’ thus defined being citizens and voters – and ultimately the collective guardians – of their ‘house’ or national home.

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    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous

    A ‘land claim’ in a hypothetical wilderness and away from government only means anything if the stakers of the claim are able to defend it successfully – with appropriate violence against a gang of thieves wishing to usurp it.
     
    That was a great movie!!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwvpUtc1hBU&t=44s
    , @Chrisnonymous
    Although everyone on this blog is focused on "property rights" aspect of the house analogy, that's not really where the strength of the analogy is.

    As I mentioned above, it's a weak analogy. It's most effective when people are operating just on the level of
    "Exclusion = BAD, so immigration = GOOD". The analogy's real usefulness is in pointing out the hypocrisy of people's double moral standards for their own behavior and the behavior they criticize in their neighbors. The house analogy's usefulness is really more in the realm of freedom of association than in the realm of property rights.

    In fact, Somin shifting the ground of the debate onto property rights is a pretty good idea from the perspective of immigration proponents because the analogy is weaker. Property rights are enforced by a third party with recognized authority, and they derive from our social participation. I don't think sovereignty of borders has the same grounding.

    "Because we live here!"
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  104. anon[393] • Disclaimer says:

    Libertarianism becomes retarded on this stubborn refusal to understand some property has to be held in common and that requires compromise. they ought to get its the difference between anarchism and libertarianism,Or maybe libertarianism has been (occupied) ?
    perhaps when somali pirates migrate to their seastead they will understand.

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  105. Art Deco says:
    @The Anti-Gnostic
    It's pretty clear that only the State can maintain Open Borders. Without the State and its Title VII and public roads and due process, "immigrants" would mostly be shot as trespassers or die of exposure in wilderness areas. Libertarian society would work out like Deadwood, Dakota Territory. No State around to issue Pride Parade permits or protect your right to build high-rise apartments and plug them in to the public utilities and infrastructure for fees that don't even approach the actual cost.

    Modern libertarian thought is dominated by Catholic universalists and Ashkenazi Jews and they have to police the bounds of debate very rigorously to keep all the obvious questions safely unexplored. Classic entryist behavior.

    Modern libertarian thought is dominated by Catholic universalists

    I think you’ll discover the social overlap between active Catholics and the libertarian nexus is precisely zero. The man who ran the Buckeye Institute many years ago has been in the course of his life a public promoter of libertarian thinking and a promoter of the Church, but not at the same time. He once said he began to leave the libertarian fold twenty years ago when he realized its leading lights generally had one thing in common: childlessness (he had five at last count). The closest you get to a Catholic libertarian is an old school admirer of Calvin Coolidge. The U.S. Catholic Conference and many diocesan chanceries are promoters of what amounts to open borders, not because they take any interest in libertarian thinking, but because the Church in its decadent state hires from the same pool that generic NGOs do. The writer Amy Welborn said many years ago that in decades of traveling the country and seeing the church-o-cracy at work she’d concluded that the main vector motivating them was ‘bored-out-of-their-minds-careerism’.

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    • Replies: @The Anti-Gnostic
    The Church doesn't have a lot to do at this point, now that Christendom and the Dar-al-Islam have declared a truce (for now) and welfare state generosity enables the poor to indulge the sins of the Biblical rich.
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  106. Interesting. No more borders. Then, no more fences around houses and private property? Then, no more locks on doors? I mean, after all, “hey, I have a RIGHT to squat anywhere I want.”

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  107. @Lot
    It is funny how I have never, ever, ever, as a 10+ year reader of isteve and kausfiles and frequent reader of other sources, never seen an immigration restrictionist say a nation is like a house.

    Somin, as a libertarian academic, could have addressed his fellow libertarian academic Hans Herman Hoppe's restrictionism moral-political justification. Or our own SS's citizenism and analogy to not a house, but a nice suburb. Or Japan's successful no immigration model. Or Kaus and Bojas's concerns about immigration-driven economic inequality causing political and cultural degradation.

    No, instead he makes up a strawman argument about a house that isn't even a good strawman and remotely similar to any real argument. Then he makes up his own really stupid analogy to a ten house community!

    I think Ben you make a mistake even accepting his stupid and abtract premise for the sake of refuting it.

    Somin and the Kochs, out of ideological fanaticism and greed, want to destroy America by importing tens or hundreds of millions African and Muslim savages. They want the destruction of our common lands, our schools, our churches, our traditions, and our form of government.

    It is funny how I have never, ever, ever, as a 10+ year reader of isteve and kausfiles and frequent reader of other sources, never seen an immigration restrictionist say a nation is like a house.

    ***

    I think Ben you make a mistake even accepting his stupid and abtract premise for the sake of refuting it.

    The “You’re a hypocrite for supporting mass immigration while excluding people from your house” argument has been made a million times on this blog and elsewhere. I don’t know how you’ve overlooked it.

    It’s a good argument, because there is no principled distinction between a house and a country.

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    • Replies: @Lot
    I've seen Steve say that as a line or two of throw-away snark. I am not sure I'd count it as an argument.

    I am not sure why we need any analogy for a nation at all. The nation of the USA is not like a house, block of houses, or co-op. It is like itself, a democratic republic, and it is also like other nations of civilized people. Nations have always and obviously had the right to exclude people and defend their borders.
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  108. Art Deco says:
    @Thomas
    Back in his NRO days, Derb came up with this:

    The affection of liberals for mass immigration, both legal and illegal, is thus very easy to understand. Why, though, do libertarians favor it? And why do I think they are nuts to do so?

    So far as the first of those questions is concerned, I confess myself baffled. I think that what is going on here is just a sort of ideological overshoot. Suspicion of state power is of course at the center of classical libertarianism. If the state is making and enforcing decisions about who may settle in territories under the state’s jurisdiction, that is certainly a manifestation of state power, and therefore comes under libertarian suspicion. Just why libertarians consider it an obnoxious manifestation — well, that’s where my bafflement begins. (That some exercises of state power are necessary and un-obnoxious is conceded by nearly all libertarians.)
    ...
    As to why I think libertarians are nuts to favor mass uncontrolled immigration from the third world: I think they are nuts because their enthusiasm on this matter is suicidal to their cause. Their ideological passion is blinding them to a rather obvious fact: that libertarianism is a peculiarly American doctrine, with very little appeal to the huddled masses of the third world. If libertarianism implies mass third-world immigration, then it is self-destroying. Libertarianism is simply not attractive either to illiterate peasants from mercantilist Latin American states, or to East Asians with traditions of imperial-bureaucratic paternalism, or to the products of Middle Eastern Muslim theocracies.
    ...
    A libertarian might, though, say that while libertarianism could indeed be a hard sell to immigrants from very illiberal political traditions, it will appeal to their Americanized children, to the second generation. Possibly so. Even setting aside the great strengthening of the welfare state caused by the preferences of that first generation, though, to sell libertarianism to the second generation would need a tremendous missionary effort. According to Brink Lindsey, only 13 percent of Americans currently lean libertarian. If decades of libertarian proselytizing have only achieved that much success with a population rooted in the traditions of Pericles and Magna Carta, of the Renaissance, Reformation, and Enlightenment, of Washington, Jefferson, and Madison, how well should libertarians expect to do with the political descendants of emperors and caliphs, of Toussaint L’Ouverture and Mao Tse-tung?
    ...
    If less than one in seven American voters is inclined to libertarianism, then there is much missionary work to be done among present-day American citizens. To think that this missionary effort will be made any easier by a steady stream of arrivals from foreign parts, most of which have never known rational, consensual government, is highly unrealistic, to the point of delusion.

    That is why I say that libertarians who favor mass immigration are nuts. If there is any hope at all for libertarianism, it rests in the libertarianism of my title: libertarianism in one country.
     
    https://www.nationalreview.com/2006/12/libertarianism-one-country-john-derbyshire/

    See G.K. Chesterton: “The problem with a madman is not that he is illogical, but that he is only logical”.

    Its doubtful that Somin or any of his confederates have any particular identification with or interest in the surrounding society. It’s just a matrix in which he lives and works but with which he has nothing but stereotyped interactions and about which he doesn’t care as long as his bubble is not invaded. His real society is limited to his social circle and professional contacts.

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  109. J1234 says:

    Yeah, for years I’ve been denied the right to put up a 30 foot tall neon-illuminated statue of Elvis on my property, and I’m pissed! They’re called zoning laws. There’s a common good that our property contributes to.

    This lawyer is using what Jonathan Haidt refers to as “motivated reasoning.” He sees the very valid and compelling analogies of national borders vs. personal property borders as a logical problem to be dealt with and disposed of rather than a possibility to be pondered.

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  110. Tulip says:

    A nation isn’t a club, it is like a cell.

    A cell has a cell wall, which controls what goes into the cell and what goes out of the cell.

    When the cell wall loses the ability to control inputs and outputs, or ruptures altogether, we call that the biological death of the cell.

    There can be no identity without difference, and no difference without exclusion. Open borders looks to denude the idea of America of any specific referent, leaving it an empty name. Which is fine, but who is going to voluntarily pay taxes to an empty name, or view imperatives issued by the name as legitimate laws, or who will volunteer to help the name, and who is going to risk their lives to defend the name?

    A government must be more than an insurance company, or it will be replaced by a government that is.

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  111. @Thomas
    Back in his NRO days, Derb came up with this:

    The affection of liberals for mass immigration, both legal and illegal, is thus very easy to understand. Why, though, do libertarians favor it? And why do I think they are nuts to do so?

    So far as the first of those questions is concerned, I confess myself baffled. I think that what is going on here is just a sort of ideological overshoot. Suspicion of state power is of course at the center of classical libertarianism. If the state is making and enforcing decisions about who may settle in territories under the state’s jurisdiction, that is certainly a manifestation of state power, and therefore comes under libertarian suspicion. Just why libertarians consider it an obnoxious manifestation — well, that’s where my bafflement begins. (That some exercises of state power are necessary and un-obnoxious is conceded by nearly all libertarians.)
    ...
    As to why I think libertarians are nuts to favor mass uncontrolled immigration from the third world: I think they are nuts because their enthusiasm on this matter is suicidal to their cause. Their ideological passion is blinding them to a rather obvious fact: that libertarianism is a peculiarly American doctrine, with very little appeal to the huddled masses of the third world. If libertarianism implies mass third-world immigration, then it is self-destroying. Libertarianism is simply not attractive either to illiterate peasants from mercantilist Latin American states, or to East Asians with traditions of imperial-bureaucratic paternalism, or to the products of Middle Eastern Muslim theocracies.
    ...
    A libertarian might, though, say that while libertarianism could indeed be a hard sell to immigrants from very illiberal political traditions, it will appeal to their Americanized children, to the second generation. Possibly so. Even setting aside the great strengthening of the welfare state caused by the preferences of that first generation, though, to sell libertarianism to the second generation would need a tremendous missionary effort. According to Brink Lindsey, only 13 percent of Americans currently lean libertarian. If decades of libertarian proselytizing have only achieved that much success with a population rooted in the traditions of Pericles and Magna Carta, of the Renaissance, Reformation, and Enlightenment, of Washington, Jefferson, and Madison, how well should libertarians expect to do with the political descendants of emperors and caliphs, of Toussaint L’Ouverture and Mao Tse-tung?
    ...
    If less than one in seven American voters is inclined to libertarianism, then there is much missionary work to be done among present-day American citizens. To think that this missionary effort will be made any easier by a steady stream of arrivals from foreign parts, most of which have never known rational, consensual government, is highly unrealistic, to the point of delusion.

    That is why I say that libertarians who favor mass immigration are nuts. If there is any hope at all for libertarianism, it rests in the libertarianism of my title: libertarianism in one country.
     
    https://www.nationalreview.com/2006/12/libertarianism-one-country-john-derbyshire/

    If libertarianism implies mass third-world immigration, then it is self-destroying.

    Same with Darwinism. Look at his followers’ birthrates.

    (Never mind his own. He was an outlier– cousin Francis was more typical there.)

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  112. Benjaminl says:
    @Tyrion 2
    I listened to an interview with David Brooks recently where he mentioned the comments and email correspondence that he receives.

    I'd always thought that writers would take this stuff with a pinch of salt - it's the internet after all.

    Instead, Brooks recounted how he had previously been forced by his own emotional state to give reading them to an intern (at the time, Reihan Salam) but then the intern was similarly brought low and they had to avoid them altogether.

    Brooks seems like quite a sensitive guy but he also sounded devastated recounting this.

    To what extent has the progressive lurch of mainstream media writers in the last few years been an emotional reaction to the ludicrous avalanche of hate mail sent to them? Perhaps the trolls don't realise the collective effect they are having?

    Receiving one, "I'm glad we gassed your Grandma" joke a month may actually be bracing and allow the receiver to understand how their writing might sometimes be perceived.

    Receiving a hundred copy and pasted similar threats/jokes a day is never going to help with moderation and emotional distance.

    The outsider only hears the man with the megaphone. The man with the megaphone only hears the troll voices screeching and shouting in his ear.

    On the other hand, someone in Brooks’s circle is getting through to him, apparently through face-to-face conversation (emphasis added):

    https://medium.com/conversations-with-tyler/david-brooks-tyler-cowen-religion-plurality-loneliness-new-york-times-diversity-eb051a4b47cc

    Yeah, well, I happen to know a lot of Trump voters of the 18-to-24 age group, and some of it is sort of rebellion against liberal professors, but a lot of it is a pretty thought-through view of what constitutes community. And I’ve had it argued to me many times that my view of community, which is about pluralism and cosmopolitanism, is attenuated and unrealistic.

    And that they generally do argue, and I’ve had it said many times to me, that “You just can’t think there’s such thing as diversity and community at the same time, that these two sit in much greater tension than you’re willing to acknowledge. I’m willing to face the reality that diverse societies tend to be attenuated societies with low social trust. I’m willing to adopt the policies that are consistent with that, and you’re not.”

    I disagree with that argument, but it’s not an argument without merit. So the young voters I’ve interviewed or have known personally, they’ve got some philosophical background to what they’re thinking.

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  113. Svigor says:
    @Tyrion 2
    I listened to an interview with David Brooks recently where he mentioned the comments and email correspondence that he receives.

    I'd always thought that writers would take this stuff with a pinch of salt - it's the internet after all.

    Instead, Brooks recounted how he had previously been forced by his own emotional state to give reading them to an intern (at the time, Reihan Salam) but then the intern was similarly brought low and they had to avoid them altogether.

    Brooks seems like quite a sensitive guy but he also sounded devastated recounting this.

    To what extent has the progressive lurch of mainstream media writers in the last few years been an emotional reaction to the ludicrous avalanche of hate mail sent to them? Perhaps the trolls don't realise the collective effect they are having?

    Receiving one, "I'm glad we gassed your Grandma" joke a month may actually be bracing and allow the receiver to understand how their writing might sometimes be perceived.

    Receiving a hundred copy and pasted similar threats/jokes a day is never going to help with moderation and emotional distance.

    The outsider only hears the man with the megaphone. The man with the megaphone only hears the troll voices screeching and shouting in his ear.

    I listened to an interview with David Brooks recently where he mentioned the comments and email correspondence that he receives.

    I’d always thought that writers would take this stuff with a pinch of salt – it’s the internet after all.

    Instead, Brooks recounted how he had previously been forced by his own emotional state to give reading them to an intern (at the time, Reihan Salam) but then the intern was similarly brought low and they had to avoid them altogether.

    Brooks seems like quite a sensitive guy but he also sounded devastated recounting this.

    I assume it’s a combination. You have some glib sociopaths, and some finely-tuned neurotics. Brooks definitely seems like a finely-tuned neurotic. Do you think it’s easy, living in a bubble so opposing arguments never touch your delicate snowflakes of bullshit? Do you have any idea how hard it is believing your own transparent lies? The Socratic Method is like acid, dude.

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  114. Lot says:
    @ben tillman

    It is funny how I have never, ever, ever, as a 10+ year reader of isteve and kausfiles and frequent reader of other sources, never seen an immigration restrictionist say a nation is like a house.

    ***

    I think Ben you make a mistake even accepting his stupid and abtract premise for the sake of refuting it.
     

    The "You're a hypocrite for supporting mass immigration while excluding people from your house" argument has been made a million times on this blog and elsewhere. I don't know how you've overlooked it.

    It's a good argument, because there is no principled distinction between a house and a country.

    I’ve seen Steve say that as a line or two of throw-away snark. I am not sure I’d count it as an argument.

    I am not sure why we need any analogy for a nation at all. The nation of the USA is not like a house, block of houses, or co-op. It is like itself, a democratic republic, and it is also like other nations of civilized people. Nations have always and obviously had the right to exclude people and defend their borders.

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  115. res says:
    @Steve Sailer
    Readers in the Comments bring up the house argument. Somin feels besieged by comments that disagree with him.

    Thanks for the pointer to the comments.

    Do you have a pointer to “Somin feels besieged by comments that disagree with him”? I did not see that (though I can certainly understand why he would).

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  116. Svigor says:
    @MattinLA
    Somin is an unreadable, monomaniacal sperg and has been for years.

    There’s no way he’s as unreadable as he is unwatchable. I got MAYBE 50% of what he was saying in the linked Carlson interview. Way too much of my focus was absorbed by his creepy aneurotypical manner.

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  117. @adreadline
    Jason Brennan's argument (that Ilya Somin mentions in that article) is far-reaching. He parodies what he refers to the ''it’s my house and I can put up a fence argument'' with the analogy:

    I have a right as a white guy not to date black women if I don’t want to. Therefore, we have a right to pass a law saying white guys can’t date black women.
     
    The ''house'' argument, then, would be saying, from what I understood, that ''I have a right as a property owner not to let strangers into my house if I don’t want to. Therefore, we have a right to pass a law saying property owners can't let strangers into their houses''.

    One does have the right to bring strangers into their house, and one does have a right to date black women, but those rights are not universal in our society. Supposing I were a white guy, I cannot go to the drive-by theater, or netflix and chill, with an imprisoned black woman. Other laws take precedence over my right to date her. Or don't they?

    He does argue in the start of his article that, by restricting immigration, his right to bring strangers, or immigrants, or immigrant strangers, into his house is compromised:


    Rather, they keep the immigrants off Larry’s property, against his will.
     
    Which it is, just as having people locked up in prisons around the nation restricts it, as well. I think what Brennan is advocating for are absolute rights. The absolute right to bring immigrants into one's property. Huh, okay then.

    That's it, but... I have another suspicion. Brennan is accusing those who do not let foreigners into their neighborhood of not being decent human beings:


    On its face, this is a weak analogy. When we close borders, we aren’t doing the same thing as putting fences around our houses. Suppose there is a neighborhood made up of 10 landowners. 8 out of 10 of them vote to keep out all foreigners. 1 out of 10, Larry, votes to let them in because he wants to rent his house to them. 1 of them votes to let them in because he’s a decent human being, but he doesn’t himself plan to rent his house.
     
    Which, if I am correct, is not very humanitarian of him, that is, saying that someone is less of a decent person because of that stance, but whatever.

    Jason Brennan’s argument (that Ilya Somin mentions in that article) is far-reaching. He parodies what he refers to the ”it’s my house and I can put up a fence argument” with the analogy:

    I have a right as a white guy not to date black women if I don’t want to. Therefore, we have a right to pass a law saying white guys can’t date black women.

    His “black woman” analogy is about the worst analogy he could attempt.

    Recognition of my right to make my own decisions (such as not dating black women) does not imply that I have the right to make laws that make similar decisions for other people. In fact, it implies the exact opposite!

    The principle on which my right is based — each person, through self-ownership, has the right to govern himself — flatly contradicts what he oddly equates to the simple exercise of a person’s self-ownership.

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  118. Tulip says:

    I can understand the objection to defining a Nation-State by ethnicity or descent (although most nation-states do). But this idiot is opposed to defining a Nation-State territorially, which means if the Russian Army wants to “visit” we are obligated to admit them–as it is no doubt racist to presuppose that just because they were formerly Russian special forces and are legally armed to the teeth, we can’t assume they are foreign hostiles.

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  119. Svigor says:
    @Steve Sailer
    Readers in the Comments bring up the house argument. Somin feels besieged by comments that disagree with him.

    You mean to say that sort of thing is the source of his “from all sides” comment? If so it’s like a man saying the weather in his backyard balances out the weather on his continent.

    He’s far too intelligent to believe that. His response to Tucker’s point about the zeitgeist of multicult propaganda was telling, IMO. A glib, facile lie that exposed what he’s really about; verbal gymnastics and lawyering. He doesn’t give a damn about the truth; he’s trying to bend the jury to his will.

    I suspect Carlson knew exactly what he was doing when he brought this creepy ‘sperg out to fight for the other side. He knew his audience would react as if shown what lives under a rock.

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  120. @Tyrion 2
    I listened to an interview with David Brooks recently where he mentioned the comments and email correspondence that he receives.

    I'd always thought that writers would take this stuff with a pinch of salt - it's the internet after all.

    Instead, Brooks recounted how he had previously been forced by his own emotional state to give reading them to an intern (at the time, Reihan Salam) but then the intern was similarly brought low and they had to avoid them altogether.

    Brooks seems like quite a sensitive guy but he also sounded devastated recounting this.

    To what extent has the progressive lurch of mainstream media writers in the last few years been an emotional reaction to the ludicrous avalanche of hate mail sent to them? Perhaps the trolls don't realise the collective effect they are having?

    Receiving one, "I'm glad we gassed your Grandma" joke a month may actually be bracing and allow the receiver to understand how their writing might sometimes be perceived.

    Receiving a hundred copy and pasted similar threats/jokes a day is never going to help with moderation and emotional distance.

    The outsider only hears the man with the megaphone. The man with the megaphone only hears the troll voices screeching and shouting in his ear.

    Oh, I feel so bad for Brooks now.

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  121. @Lot
    What? While it is a low bar, Tucker has the bravest and best political show on TV.

    Ugh, I wish they could find someone smarter than Tucker Carlson

    What? While it is a low bar, Tucker has the bravest and best political show on TV.

    Perhaps by “smarter”, IJ is referring to his sartorial tastes.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3424885/How-vengeful-Trump-left-crass-voicemail-political-pundit-mocked-bouffant.html

    http://www.benarment.com/.a/6a00d83451dccb69e200e553f5a6db8833-pi

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4299122/Tucker-Carlson-tells-Jorge-Ramos-whiter-am.html

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  122. @Rob McX
    The open borders utopia would be an interesting place. People in gated communities would have the same right to exclude outsiders that was once exercised by the government on a national level. The rest of the population would live with the consequences of "the ending of hereditary citizenship", trying to avoid the black and brown tide of invasion as best they could.

    The open borders utopia would be an interesting place. People in gated communities would have the same right to exclude outsiders that was once exercised by the government on a national level.

    This is one of the major premises in Neal Stephenson’s excellent novel Snow Crash. Even if you’re not a fan of science fiction, it’s worth a read. The author does a great job of imagining how people might sort themselves into communities—some ethnic, some ideological, etc.—without being forced to use one currency or obey one nation’s laws, despite living very close together.

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    • Replies: @Romanian

    When it gets down to it — talking trade balances here — once we've brain-drained all our technology into other countries, once things have evened out, they're making cars in Bolivia and microwave ovens in Tadzhikistan and selling them here — once our edge in natural resources has been made irrelevant by giant Hong Kong ships and dirigibles that can ship North Dakota all the way to New Zealand for a nickel — once the Invisible Hand has taken away all those historical inequities and smeared them out into a broad global layer of what a Pakistani brickmaker would consider to be prosperity — y'know what? There's only four things we do better than anyone else:
    music
    movies
    microcode (software)
    high-speed pizza delivery
     
    Is no. 3 still on the table?
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  123. CPK says:
    @Rob McX
    I see Somin is pushing the case for unrestricted immigration quite a lot. He has a piece here at Open Borders blog explaining the intentions of the Founding Fathers. "The Constitution does not Justify Ignoring the Benefits of Immigration for Immigrants", he headlines his first argument for open borders.

    Some opponents of immigration claim that the inclusion of the phrase “ourselves and our posterity” suggests that the Constitution was only meant to benefit present US citizens and their descendants, thereby justifying the US government in ignoring the rights and welfare of potential migrants in making decisions on immigration policy. However, the term “posterity,” as used in the Preamble, is probably metaphorical rather than literal...[The framers of the Constitution] knew that millions of immigrants would be among the “posterity” referred to in the Preamble.
     
    Sorry, America, but "invite the world" was part of the deal from the start.

    Sorry, America, but “invite the world” was part of the deal from the start.

    Weird – I’ve started seeing this claim more recently, presumably an attempt to make open borders the default position or null hypothesis, so it’s not necessary to make much of an argument for it.

    Of course, even if the framers anticipated “posterity” would include immigrants, it doesn’t follow that this meant every possible immigrant. Nobody at the time, to my knowledge, objected that the restrictions in the 1790 Naturalization Act violated the spirit (much less the letter) of the Constitution.

    So the claim that “our posterity” is “probably metaphorical rather than literal” seems dubious.

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  124. ChrisZ says:
    @PhysicistDave
    ChrisZ wrote:

    I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism.
     
    There are quite obvious libertarian responses to Somin:

    1) Prospective immigrants want and need to use the public infrastructure (roads, etc.) built and paid for by ourselves and our ancestors. Surely, by libertarian standards, we who are currently citizens own that infrastructure, not prospective immigrants. And we are entitled to deny immigrants the use of this infrastructure which we own.

    2) Under our "democratic" political system, immigrants (or their children) eventually gain the right to participate in the legalized looting (taxation) of the productive members of our society. By libertarians standards, we are under no obligation to grant them that right.

    3) Under current anti-discrimination laws, we have to associate in certain ways with immigrants (especially from the Third World) whether we wish to or not. Again, this violates libertarian principles.

    An ideal libertarian world would handle immigration much the way Disney World does: i.e., no one is automatically free to "immigrate" to Disney World, though the management might be willing to work something out if you are willing to pay enough money and show you would behave yourself.

    But, of course, having your own personal suite at the Mickey Mouse Hotel does not give you the right to vote on taking money from others who are at Disney World and it certainly does not guarantee you the automatic right to "immigrate" to Universal Studios or Seaworld Orlando, even though they may be right down the road!

    Somin has actually not thought this through from a libertarian perspective.

    (N.B. I am far from the first to have made these points: as Ben Tillman notes, check out the work of H.-H. Hoppe for a leading libertarian who discusses all this in great detail.)

    Thank you, Dave, for this extensive response. And thanks too to Ben Tillman, iStevefan, Utu, and Thomas for their wonderfully informative replies.

    Regarding Dave’s Libertarian responses to Slomin: Though these are surely solid from the perspective of Libertarian thought, to me at least they seem to highlight the limitations of that thought overall. Arguments that assert “We are not legally obliged…” or “Under our current system…” (these are my words, not Dave’s) seem like a thin, brittle foundation on which to address current immigration issues.

    For example, it’s one thing to say that we should not be forced to associate with people we don’t like. But the deeper question might be, Why do we associate in certain ways, with certain people, to begin with? What meaning does that hold for societies and nations? What is the value of historical continuity in a nation? And on what basis can a people make distinctions between different groups of potential immigrants, welcoming only those who would be compatible with their established way of life?

    These are certainly the kinds of questions dealt with in the present forum. Does Libertarianism offer meaningful contributions towards answering them? (Please note this is not a question directed at PhysicistDave; I’m just thinking out loud). Libertarianism appears to provide answers to the questions of yesterday, but not of tomorrow.

    I suppose my related question regarding heterodox thinkers like Hoppe and Mercer would be: How much longer will they consider the Libertarian banner to be a meaningful description of their thought?

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    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    ChrisZ wrote, replying to me:

    For example, it’s one thing to say that we should not be forced to associate with people we don’t like. But the deeper question might be, Why do we associate in certain ways, with certain people, to begin with? What meaning does that hold for societies and nations? What is the value of historical continuity in a nation? And on what basis can a people make distinctions between different groups of potential immigrants, welcoming only those who would be compatible with their established way of life?

    These are certainly the kinds of questions dealt with in the present forum. Does Libertarianism offer meaningful contributions towards answering them? (Please note this is not a question directed at PhysicistDave; I’m just thinking out loud). Libertarianism appears to provide answers to the questions of yesterday, but not of tomorrow.
     
    Well, I agree with you that these are interesting and important questions. I also agree with you that libertarians have devoted too little attention to such questions in the past: to be sure, this is partly because there was an overwhelming consensus that of course countries could control their own borders, limit immigration, etc. among almost all political positions. (Note that I am referring to "libertarians," rather than "Libertarians": the Libertarian Party has become basically a liberal Republican party, but most libertarians are not Libertarians.)

    My own answer would be that before the rise of the Leviathan state, the issues you raised largely took care of themselves: i.e., people naturally sorted themselves out into communities and cultural groups in which they were happy. The major exceptions of course involved actions by the state -- conquest, obviously, as well as systematic relocations of whole populations by the state (from the Assyrians to the Soviets).

    People simply sorting out social and cultural issues on their own never worked perfectly (nothing ever works perfectly!), and I myself have some complaints about the insularity and parochialism of traditional societies. Yet, it probably did work better than anything else that was practicable.

    People who wrote about even a megalopolis like New York City prior to the mid-twentieth century noted that NYC was more a collection of small relatively homogeneous communities than one single homogenized super-city.

    And, of course, Des Moines, Indianapolis, or my own hometown of St. Louis were very different from NYC, much less internationalist and cosmopolitan: yet even such inland towns were really collections of very different ethnically distinct neighborhoods (I know this of St. Louis from my own childhood).

    So, I think a good case can be made that human communities and cultures sort themselves out in the absence of centralized control just as free markets work without any centralized control.

    Of course, the Left labels this sort of natural sorting out as "segregation" and tries to destroy it, even when it is the result of voluntary individual choice.

    Yes, libertarians have focused more on economics than society and culture because, as you imply, that really was the relevant question fifty years ago: are we to follow the Soviet economic model or have free markets? That question of course still has some relevance (e.g., Obamacare does not work).

    And, yes, you are also right that libertarians need to start being serious about the questions you raise. The outstanding example of a scholar who is doing that is H.-H. Hoppe, and, more broadly, some people associated with the Mises Institute and the Lew Rockwell website (Rockwell is founder and chairman of Mises).

    But, I do think a compelling case can be made that decentralized free choice based on private property provably works not perfectly but better than any alternative in dealing with social and cultural issues as well as economic issues.

    Are most people who call themselves "libertarians" behind the curve on this? Indeed: exhibit A -- Professor Somin.
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  125. Forbes says:
    @Barnard
    Not to mention restrictions on businesses and where they can be located. Does Somin think a homeowner living across the street from an elementary school should be able to turn his house into a brothel? These people are not going to be persuaded. Is it simply social conditioning that has caused these crazy ideas to be treated as respectable?

    In the Liber-turd-ian world, Somin and his ilk assumes everyone will be civil and well-behaved, such that what goes on in the brothel (or drug den, etc.) will be innocuous/invisible to outsiders–and none of the patrons’ behaviors will spill out-of-doors. That “discretion” is their first, last, and middle name.

    That such a fiction regarding human conduct is believed, in contradiction to human experience, means Somin (and ilk) have been sampling too much of the weed they want legalized.

    Admittedly, I was once a fan of libertarianism, but other than small government advocacy, their approach to socio-cultural and economic human behavior is naivety itself.

    Yogi Berra’s retort is appropriate: In theory, it works in practice, in practice, it doesn’t.

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  126. notanon says:

    within around 30 years of the supply of cheap labor from slavery drying up, greedy sociopaths started pushing the idea of mass immigration and a diverse melting point as a source of cheap labor instead

    open borders is slavery 2.0

    #

    and it can’t work in mass capitalism for the same reason slavery couldn’t – people with no money can’t spend it – cheap labor, whether via slavery or open borders is only viable in a plantation type economy where labor-intensive serfs make goods destined to be sold to a rich elite i.e. the serfs aren’t part of the supply and demand equation for those goods – mass capitalism requires a middle class economy.

    last time around capitalism was saved from itself by Quaker type capitalists – that’s not looking likely this time.

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  127. @Reg Cæsar
    Note how Gordon Lightfoot contradicts himself here:

    Beware of the darkness, be kind to your children
    Remember the woman who waits
    And the house you live in will never fall down
    If you pity the stranger who stands at your gate...

    Beware of strange faces and dark dingy places
    Be careful while bending the law
    And the house you live in will never fall down
    If you pity the stranger who stands at your door
     
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5mUAazM4FdI

    He’s Canadian, a people fortunate enough to have their only border–settled 170 back– with a fellow Anglo-sphere nation, that was more prosperous and free. That has enabled Canadians to entertain even more silly fairytale notions than most folks.

    Of course, they’ve proceeded to squander that amazing birthright and invite the stranger inside. That’s what living in a fairytales does.

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    He’s Canadian, a people fortunate enough to have their only border–settled 170 back– with a fellow Anglo-sphere nation...
     
    They do have maritime borders with Denmark (Greenland) and France (St Pierre and Miquelon). But the combined populations of both could probably be seated in the SkyDome, or whatever the hell the Blue Jays play in these days.

    Of course, they’ve proceeded to squander that amazing birthright and invite the stranger inside. That’s what living in a fairytales does.
     
    Canada, like America, has always had a stranger inside. In their case, it was linguistic rather than racial.

    But why you'd want to exacerbate the situation with more alien aliens is beyond me. Way beyond.

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  128. notanon says:
    @Anon
    There is no market for lolbertarianism.

    It requires the ongoing subsidy of its sugar daddy billionaires.

    Odds on the Koch Foundations going they way of the Rockefeller and Ford Foundations once the founder is gone???

    right – it was designed to manipulate a certain demographic who have since shifted to alt-right but unfortunately there is a market for the fusion of SJW ideas and neoliberal open borders so i expect most of the Koch brothers shills will transition into that.

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  129. notanon says:
    @Svigor
    Somin wants to restrict property rights, by outlawing covenants, HOAs, etc. The less restrictive option is to allow neighborhoods (countries) to decide for themselves; use covenants, HOAs, etc., or don't. The more restrictive option is to outlaw the practice and limit neighborhoods (countries) to one option: no covenants, HOAs, etc.

    Except he doesn't, because one neighborhood (Israel) has a really restrictive covenant, and Somin probably isn't going to call it out.

    But Jews have this thing where they think the goyim are stupid, so he packages his goal of selectively trampling property rights as universally protecting them, and hopes no one will notice.

    stupid

    genuine libertarians tend to be intelligent people with a compulsion to be morally consistent (at least in public)

    their weakness is that compulsion to be morally consistent – easily manipulated by people who don’t share that trait.

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  130. Restated in this way, the house analogy could indeed potentially justify almost any immigration restrictions a government might choose to set up. But it can also justify all kinds of repressive government policies that target natives, as well. If a state has the same powers over land within the national territory as a homeowner has over her house, then the state has broad power to suppress speech and religion the rulers disapprove of.

    It’s not “the state”. It’s the citizens. They have a property interest in the country. Their property interest does not, and logically cannot, include a right to dilute the ownership interests of those similarly situated, or else it would not be property in the first place.

    Owning a share in a corporate entity does not give any shareholder (or any combination of shareholders) ownership of other shareholders, and shareholders therefore cannot impose rules on other shareholders as Somin purports to suppose.

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  131. notanon says:
    @Svigor
    The test for this: do they give Israel a really, really hard time on the issue? That's what genius 'spergs would do. They'd (intellectually) go where the problem is, without regard for the social faux pas. Like Doctors Without Borders, who spend a lot more of their DWB time in places like Syria, and not so much on the French Riviera.

    Something tells me he doesn't. Just a hunch.

    yes – that always needs to be the first question just to save time

    in my experience 9 times out of 10 they start evasive maneuvers

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  132. Lot says:
    @AnotherDad

    Somin and the Kochs, out of ideological fanaticism and greed, want to destroy America by importing tens or hundreds of millions African and Muslim savages. They want the destruction of our common lands, our schools, our churches, our traditions, and our form of government.
     
    Damn straight! Well said Lot. I'm ready. Send me over the top, i'll give those bastards what for!

    No need for heroics just yet. Just never miss an election, make sure you become several times over AnotherGrandad, and support Steve and Center for Immigration Studies and Ann Corcoran* when you can!

    (*Just my semi-informed opinion on where you get the best bang for your anti-migration buck. While I appreciate much of their work, PB’s salary at vdare seems quite excessive and I don’t see them making much of an impact outside of preaching to the choir. Krikorian and CIS serve the very valuable role of countering the billionaire-funded attempts to get the GOP to embrace mass migration. And Corcoran does so much all by herself fighting the absolute worst third world migration program. https://mobile.twitter.com/RefugeeWatcher )

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  133. @Father O'Hara
    Ilya is a man's name. Didn't you ever watch "The Man From UNCLE"?

    Father, AndrewR was talking about this paragraph, in which Mr. cure for inSominia puts in a random feminine pronoun in replace of standard English:

    But it can also justify all kinds of repressive government policies that target natives, as well. If a state has the same powers over land within the national territory as a homeowner has over her house, …

    Are these random feminine pronouns used to get female approval for the publishing of papers? Otherwise it reads just plain stupidly.

    Anyway, Andrew, I was going to mention this first thing. I’m kind of late in commenting on this article, but, as a Libertarian, what matters is what people were coerced into doing vs. contracting about freely.

    Re: one of Steve’s examples: It’s a tough call if there were no HOA in place when the abscent landlord inherited his property, but that should have been hashed out when they formed it. There are ways to deal with all of this stuff without involving governments, except in the functioning of civil courts of law. The reduction in the inheritor’s property value due to being placed under HOA rules could have resulted in a payment to him. OTOH, if he were to try to rent to 18 beaners, then that reduces the value of the neighborhood, so the rest should be compensated (or the HOA rule stands). I’m no lawyer but they LUV, LUV, LUV this stuff.

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  134. @Cloudbuster
    Why would there be no public infrastructure? Libertarianism calls for a small state, not no state. A lot of so-called libertarians seem to take a leap straight into anarchism, which is a far different and even more juvenile philosophy, without even bothering to note that they've made the leap.

    I’ve never known a libertarian whose primary motivation wasn’t drugs and sex (and porn). See, once you abandon tradition, precedent, and culture for your foundation then social anarchism starts to make sense. Marriage civilizes this to a great extent, which is why libertarians are perfectly happy to see marriage wither away on the vine. Sobriety helps too, and libertarians hate sobriety.

    As you can tell, my experience with libertarians hasn’t been all that positive. alas.

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  135. log says: • Website

    Perhaps, however, the government is a kind of super-owner that has the right to supersede the decisions of private owners whenever it passes a law that does so. On that view, the state has all the same rights over land within its jurisdiction as a private owner has over his house. And when the two types of property rights conflict, the state prevails.

    When we define “property” as resources monopolized by force or threats, and define the “owner” as the person or group issuing the threats or applying the force which currently prevails over all contenders with respect to a resource, we can also define “rights” as a priori declarations, or predictions, or threats, of which side the force of the owner will come down on in the event of a conflict. So also are laws threats.

    This is the system we have. The state wins vs. “private owners” because the state can credibly threaten greater force; the (current) state or government is the actual owner and the private owners are functionally vassals or renters.

    Land which is not monopolized by force or threats is not property under this descriptive schema. The so-called “non-aggression axiom,” inasmuch as it assumes the existence of property, is self-contradictory because property only exists by virtue of monopolizing resources by initiating threats or violence against all other comers.

    Property is not so much a matter of our relationship to stuff, but rather a matter of our relationships to each other – specifically, the device of property is merely cover for our exerting control over each other by threats and force. This system of threats and force to accomplish resource allocation and control over each other is, metaphorically, the Matrix into which we have all been born and acculturated.

    The logical negation of this system of control over people and resources by threats and violence would entail actual social equality and no assertion of property claims – just what Christ commanded in the Sermon on the Mount.

    Which system do we prefer?

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  136. @Clifford Brown

    Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements
     
    Oddly is the operative word here.

    I tried to find any evidence, but it looks like Ilyan Somin is not some sort of hypocrite pushing open borders for some alternative political agenda. Instead, like so many immigration experts on the Libertarian Right, Ilya Somin is your basic autistic sperg type who, while extremely intelligent, should not be allowed anywhere near a position of leadership or influence. He is exactly as you imagine he is. His theoretical premises are all fine in the abstract realm of theory, but completely deficient in real world practice.

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSbho1m07E0

    This guy from gmu is totally detached from the reality of immigration and cultural issues. All he knows is numbers on a spread sheet. He has his own open borders ideology and ill bet he does not live in pg county md. Why not? Its less expensive and crime there is just misunderstood by morons who dont look at spread sheets. These are the ppl running univs that cost parents $30-40k/yr.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Ground Zero for immigrant settlement in NoVa is Prince William County. We can check the numbers, but I don't think it has anywhere near the issues with street crime that Prince George's has. The crime in greater Washington is quite concentrated in the more southwesterly section of the District and in four of the six segments of Prince George's, with the Prince George's segments safer than the DC neighborhoods. PG is safer than it was 20 years ago and the District vastly safer (but still not that secure).
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  137. Olorin says:
    @Anonym
    I'm glad you mentioned that Ilya Somin is a Koch-head.

    Or as a farmer of my acquaintance put it most memorably, “These GOPe turkeys are Koch gobblers.”

    Budabump

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  138. @AndrewR
    I'm not sure what's worse: Somin implying that advocates of immigration restriction are uniformly "not decent people", or her[?] use of "whoever" as an object.

    Oops, Andrew, I’d read your comment way too quickly the first time. My beef was about the random “her” pronoun, so both of you, NEVER MIND! Father O’Hara’s reply makes sense now.

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  139. @Clifford Brown

    Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements
     
    Oddly is the operative word here.

    I tried to find any evidence, but it looks like Ilyan Somin is not some sort of hypocrite pushing open borders for some alternative political agenda. Instead, like so many immigration experts on the Libertarian Right, Ilya Somin is your basic autistic sperg type who, while extremely intelligent, should not be allowed anywhere near a position of leadership or influence. He is exactly as you imagine he is. His theoretical premises are all fine in the abstract realm of theory, but completely deficient in real world practice.

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSbho1m07E0

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.

    Not quite, Clifford. Your first clause is true. You’re not gonna have any of this good stuff without having a population that understands it AND is honest enough to maintain a system of government that supports it all.

    However, these rights are natural human rights, as obvious as needing a place to piss and s__t. It’s only through years and hard work of Commies/Socialists or hard-working Ed-school graduates (though I repeat myself) that one can beat the obviousness of property rights out of people. People must force their governments to respect the natural rights, not the other way around. The US Constitution is the best attempt ever by mankind, at it woulda worked too, if it hadn’t been for those meddling Socialists!

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  140. @Clifford Brown

    Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements
     
    Oddly is the operative word here.

    I tried to find any evidence, but it looks like Ilyan Somin is not some sort of hypocrite pushing open borders for some alternative political agenda. Instead, like so many immigration experts on the Libertarian Right, Ilya Somin is your basic autistic sperg type who, while extremely intelligent, should not be allowed anywhere near a position of leadership or influence. He is exactly as you imagine he is. His theoretical premises are all fine in the abstract realm of theory, but completely deficient in real world practice.

    The State and the People come before property rights. Without a State and a People that support property rights, his pontifications about right of exclusion are meaningless. Property Rights are derived from the State not the other way around.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSbho1m07E0

    Maybe that last post was nothing but a semantic correction, I don’t know. I just watched this video last night and agree with you all on here about this guy. Especially the comparison to “Fire guy” on Office Space.

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  141. Bill says:
    @ChrisZ
    Steve, the objections you’ve raised are so elementary that I’m feeling embarrassed for the “philosophy” of Libertarianism. I’m sure the comment thread here will soon be filled with additional critiques.

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought. Even leftists gave it grudging admiration because it claimed to proceed from purely rational principle, and had apparently dispensed with the “God, blood, and soil” preoccupations of traditional conservatisms. Addressing the messiness of human social arrangements was always a limitation of Libertarian theory, but in a bind its adherents would retreat to the excuse that they were only offering “a partial philosophy” dealing with a discreet (i.e. non-messy) part of political-economic life. That alibi at least had the advantage of being honest.

    The immigration question, however, seems to have exposed the arrogance of Libertarian thinkers; their intoxication with those few precious ideas they believe they understand and can thereby apply to every circumstance. Reading Somin here, the tenor reminds me more of Freud or Marx than of Aristotle or J.S. Mill.

    To your earlier post involving Somin, I commented that his argument vindicated my sense that Libertarianism is an inhuman, and potentially dehumanizing, mode of thought. But here it really seems exposed as a mere cover for financial interest. That’s an enormous diminishment in intellectual status, and it makes me wonder whether Libertarianism ever truly existed as a separate philosophy of the right, or was merely a clever residue of Cold War Conservatism, which will not survive the re-aggregation of the old right and left coalitions we are currently witnessing.

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought. Even leftists gave it grudging admiration because it claimed to proceed from purely rational principle,

    That’s because libertarianism is a species of leftist thought.

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    • Replies: @anonn
    Do you have any idea what either libertarians or leftists think?. Libertarianism is a pretend philosophy ginned up by enormously wealthy trustfunders from mostly conservative thought and classical liberalism. You can blame libertarianism on conservative sellouts and certainly on autistic liberals, but its slavish devotion to the absolute power of inherited wealth is 100% at odds with actual left thought.
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  142. Forbes says:
    @Elsewhere
    Oh, yeah? Then why all the screeching about Crimea?

    Crimea was a part of the Russian Empire (1783) and an autonomous republic of the Soviet Union after the 1917 revolution. In 1954, Khrushchev made it part of the Ukraine Soviet Socialist Republic. It’s been a part of Russia much longer than associated with the Ukraine.

    It is home to Russia’s Black Sea naval fleet. It’s population is majority ethnic Russian (Russian speakers).

    Curiously, Bush (41) and German Chancellor Helmut Kohl promised Russia no eastward expansion of NATO in return for Russia accepting the East & West German reunification.

    All the previous talk of making the Ukraine a NATO member is significantly destabilizing to the region. Why should Russia ascent to a NATO member on its doorstep? Why should the US pursue such a course except to create an unnecessary conflict with Russia?

    The screeching appears historically ignorant–which is usually the case in such “controversies.” Like the lawyer that has neither the law or the facts–pound the table for maximum effect.

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  143. @utu
    In the libertarian utopia there is no public infrastructure. Who does not own it must pay for its usage.

    utu wrote to me:

    In the libertarian utopia there is no public infrastructure. Who does not own it must pay for its usage

    Indeed. And, a key theme of modern “welfare economics,” transcending any specific ideology, is that if everything is privately owned, if property rights are completely clear and well-established, then “negative externalities” take care of themselves.

    Of course, the key word here is “if”! As any competent economist can tell you, it is debatable if a system of property rights can ever exist which completely “internalize negative externalities.”

    And, in any case, our current political/legal system most assuredly does not do so.

    Slomin’s problem is not that he takes libertarianism and welfare economics too seriously. Rather, he does not take them seriously enough. He has not thought through the entire matter, with all of the real-world complications, and how the theory does indeed deal with such real-world complications.

    Slomin is like a freshman who has learned F=ma and thinks he knows how to design a faster-than-light starship. Not only is life more complicated than that, but so is good theory.

    To put it bluntly, Slomin does not understand either economics or libertarianism. (In fairness, I too was young once and once held views similar to his. Fortunately, I learned more as I grew up. I’m not sure Slomin will.)

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    • Replies: @utu
    If it it becomes politically expedient Slomin will use his sophistry to justify cannibalism. This not about his understanding of economics and libertarianism but about integrity and morality which he has none.
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  144. @AnotherDad
    The pension debacle is one of those things which really deserves a Constitutional amendment to fix.

    Politicians should never be able to promise spending beyond their term in office. Public employees should not get defined benefit pensions--ever. (Note, i don't think anyone should really be getting them, this is probably a good rule for corporate execs and labor contracts.) If a politician wants public employees to have good pensions, that money should be delivered--to their pension fund--right then and there. And the politician then faces the voters, the taxpayers who can transparently assess his use of funds.

    This stuff is a problem at the state and local level, hence a Constitutional Amendment should have nothing to do with it. Now, state constitutions, on the other hand ….

    This brings up a slightly OT point (well, off-topic to your comment’s topic) that there is a reason that the public pension problems are not occurring at the US Federal level. The FEDS can just print more money. The States can’t … which is a very good thing …. but, yeah, don’t count on seeing all that pension money they promised you. I have a friend who retired from our State’s government from a legit occupation. I couldn’t tell her, because it’s not really my business, but do wish she would take some kind of lump sum payment now.

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    • Replies: @International Jew

    The FEDS can just print more money.
     
    All that means is that the Feds can avoid a bankruptcy that finally focuses people's minds. "Printing money" means creating purchasing power — placed of course in the government's hands — and is thus equivalent to a stealth tax.
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  145. @Rob McX

    Will Larry agree to cover his immigrant tenants’ debts and social costs if they become a public charge?
     
    In the libertarians' utopia, there will be no public assistance. The whole population of Bangladesh can come to America if they want, but they'll have to work for $3 an hour and no food stamps. If they want to supplement their income by scavenging in rubbish tips, that is their choice.

    Nah, bad premise there. If there’s no public assistance, they won’t be coming. It could take a while for the people on the other end to learn that, but that’s the end result. “You can’t have a welfare state AND open borders.”

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  146. @Thomas
    Back in his NRO days, Derb came up with this:

    The affection of liberals for mass immigration, both legal and illegal, is thus very easy to understand. Why, though, do libertarians favor it? And why do I think they are nuts to do so?

    So far as the first of those questions is concerned, I confess myself baffled. I think that what is going on here is just a sort of ideological overshoot. Suspicion of state power is of course at the center of classical libertarianism. If the state is making and enforcing decisions about who may settle in territories under the state’s jurisdiction, that is certainly a manifestation of state power, and therefore comes under libertarian suspicion. Just why libertarians consider it an obnoxious manifestation — well, that’s where my bafflement begins. (That some exercises of state power are necessary and un-obnoxious is conceded by nearly all libertarians.)
    ...
    As to why I think libertarians are nuts to favor mass uncontrolled immigration from the third world: I think they are nuts because their enthusiasm on this matter is suicidal to their cause. Their ideological passion is blinding them to a rather obvious fact: that libertarianism is a peculiarly American doctrine, with very little appeal to the huddled masses of the third world. If libertarianism implies mass third-world immigration, then it is self-destroying. Libertarianism is simply not attractive either to illiterate peasants from mercantilist Latin American states, or to East Asians with traditions of imperial-bureaucratic paternalism, or to the products of Middle Eastern Muslim theocracies.
    ...
    A libertarian might, though, say that while libertarianism could indeed be a hard sell to immigrants from very illiberal political traditions, it will appeal to their Americanized children, to the second generation. Possibly so. Even setting aside the great strengthening of the welfare state caused by the preferences of that first generation, though, to sell libertarianism to the second generation would need a tremendous missionary effort. According to Brink Lindsey, only 13 percent of Americans currently lean libertarian. If decades of libertarian proselytizing have only achieved that much success with a population rooted in the traditions of Pericles and Magna Carta, of the Renaissance, Reformation, and Enlightenment, of Washington, Jefferson, and Madison, how well should libertarians expect to do with the political descendants of emperors and caliphs, of Toussaint L’Ouverture and Mao Tse-tung?
    ...
    If less than one in seven American voters is inclined to libertarianism, then there is much missionary work to be done among present-day American citizens. To think that this missionary effort will be made any easier by a steady stream of arrivals from foreign parts, most of which have never known rational, consensual government, is highly unrealistic, to the point of delusion.

    That is why I say that libertarians who favor mass immigration are nuts. If there is any hope at all for libertarianism, it rests in the libertarianism of my title: libertarianism in one country.
     
    https://www.nationalreview.com/2006/12/libertarianism-one-country-john-derbyshire/

    I was off National Review by 2006, so I missed this one. After reading this, and especially:

    If less than one in seven American voters is inclined to libertarianism, then there is much missionary work to be done among present-day American citizens. To think that this missionary effort will be made any easier by a steady stream of arrivals from foreign parts, most of which have never known rational, consensual government, is highly unrealistic, to the point of delusion.

    … I don’t have to write a long comment I was going to, to explain this important piece of common sense. Thank you, John Derbyshire. I don’t get paid for this.

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  147. @utu
    In the libertarian utopia there is no public infrastructure. Who does not own it must pay for its usage.

    If you think you “own” any of the public infrastructure, try taking just one swing home from the playground. You may have paid for a whole lot more than that, but the cops will come knocking and wondering if you are nuts, while they’re at it. OK, don’t like that one? Try telling the parks department that you want them to keep that swingset up… the one they’re tearing down due to the lawyers. They don’t have to listen to a part-owner. No, they won’t give it to you either. I tried to get a nice office chair out of the recycling dumpster after throwing something else in, and the people pitched a fit and threatened to call the cops.

    “Who does not own it must pay for it’s usage.” Yeah, same for public stuff. How’d you get out of paying property tax, utu?

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    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    Achmed E. Newman wrote:

    If you think you “own” any of the public infrastructure, try taking just one swing home from the playground. You may have paid for a whole lot more than that, but the cops will come knocking and wondering if you are nuts, while they’re at it.
     
    No, it's like owning shares in a corporation: if I buy some shares in GM, I can't walk off with a couple of the PCs from corporate headquarters. Rather, I own the right to enjoy my share of the benefits from the ongoing operation of GM (e.g., dividends).

    Similarly, residents of a country in effect are shareholders in the public infrastructure of that country: they are entitled to enjoy the benefits of the infrastructure but cannot physically grab "their share" of it any more than a stockholder in GM can just grab some PCs from corporate headquarters.

    Of course, this was never spelled out explicitly in the past simply because the basic idea was so taken for granted by almost all human beings that no one needed to spell it out, just as you do not need to think about breathing unless you have some trouble with breathing.

    But, now there is indeed a great deal of trouble over who gets access to the public goods embodied in a particular country (almost always, of course, a Western country), and so there is now a need to be more explicit.
    , @utu
    Newman, you are an idiot.
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  148. FrankT says:

    “Oddly, law professor Somin seems to have not thought about private collective property agreements that restrict individual property owners’ right to do any damn thing he pleases with his property. ”

    Thanks for addressing this, Steve.

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  149. @Anonymous
    'Property rights' like all 'rights' only have a meaning if they can actually be enforced - which in the final analysis equates to overwhelming state violence.

    A 'land claim' in a hypothetical wilderness and away from government only means anything if the stakers of the claim are able to defend it successfully - with appropriate violence against a gang of thieves wishing to usurp it. Something our medieval ancestors knew only too well - but something that Angela Merkel, the EU and The Economist judge to be the ultimate anathema.

    Hence the 'house analogy' when we speak of the geographical territory of a nation being the 'national home' of a people, and the 'people' thus defined being citizens and voters - and ultimately the collective guardians - of their 'house' or national home.

    A ‘land claim’ in a hypothetical wilderness and away from government only means anything if the stakers of the claim are able to defend it successfully – with appropriate violence against a gang of thieves wishing to usurp it.

    That was a great movie!!

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  150. @Anonymous
    'Property rights' like all 'rights' only have a meaning if they can actually be enforced - which in the final analysis equates to overwhelming state violence.

    A 'land claim' in a hypothetical wilderness and away from government only means anything if the stakers of the claim are able to defend it successfully - with appropriate violence against a gang of thieves wishing to usurp it. Something our medieval ancestors knew only too well - but something that Angela Merkel, the EU and The Economist judge to be the ultimate anathema.

    Hence the 'house analogy' when we speak of the geographical territory of a nation being the 'national home' of a people, and the 'people' thus defined being citizens and voters - and ultimately the collective guardians - of their 'house' or national home.

    Although everyone on this blog is focused on “property rights” aspect of the house analogy, that’s not really where the strength of the analogy is.

    As I mentioned above, it’s a weak analogy. It’s most effective when people are operating just on the level of
    “Exclusion = BAD, so immigration = GOOD”. The analogy’s real usefulness is in pointing out the hypocrisy of people’s double moral standards for their own behavior and the behavior they criticize in their neighbors. The house analogy’s usefulness is really more in the realm of freedom of association than in the realm of property rights.

    In fact, Somin shifting the ground of the debate onto property rights is a pretty good idea from the perspective of immigration proponents because the analogy is weaker. Property rights are enforced by a third party with recognized authority, and they derive from our social participation. I don’t think sovereignty of borders has the same grounding.

    “Because we live here!”

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  151. @AnotherDad
    He's Canadian, a people fortunate enough to have their only border--settled 170 back-- with a fellow Anglo-sphere nation, that was more prosperous and free. That has enabled Canadians to entertain even more silly fairytale notions than most folks.

    Of course, they've proceeded to squander that amazing birthright and invite the stranger inside. That's what living in a fairytales does.

    He’s Canadian, a people fortunate enough to have their only border–settled 170 back– with a fellow Anglo-sphere nation…

    They do have maritime borders with Denmark (Greenland) and France (St Pierre and Miquelon). But the combined populations of both could probably be seated in the SkyDome, or whatever the hell the Blue Jays play in these days.

    Of course, they’ve proceeded to squander that amazing birthright and invite the stranger inside. That’s what living in a fairytales does.

    Canada, like America, has always had a stranger inside. In their case, it was linguistic rather than racial.

    But why you’d want to exacerbate the situation with more alien aliens is beyond me. Way beyond.

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  152. Marketing researcher and analyst cum journalist Steve Sailer understands nuanced and arcane aspects of the law of property astronomically more throughly and insightfully than Prof. Somin – and a good ninety per cent of all professors of law in the F.U.S.A

    Mull that fact for a moment, dear reader.

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  153. Rosie says:
    @eah
    https://s26.postimg.cc/tv32u6evt/per_capita_lifetime_budgetary_impact.jpg

    Wow. It’s devastating when you lay it all out like that. So much for White privilege.

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  154. @ChrisZ
    Thank you, Dave, for this extensive response. And thanks too to Ben Tillman, iStevefan, Utu, and Thomas for their wonderfully informative replies.

    Regarding Dave's Libertarian responses to Slomin: Though these are surely solid from the perspective of Libertarian thought, to me at least they seem to highlight the limitations of that thought overall. Arguments that assert "We are not legally obliged..." or "Under our current system..." (these are my words, not Dave's) seem like a thin, brittle foundation on which to address current immigration issues.

    For example, it's one thing to say that we should not be forced to associate with people we don't like. But the deeper question might be, Why do we associate in certain ways, with certain people, to begin with? What meaning does that hold for societies and nations? What is the value of historical continuity in a nation? And on what basis can a people make distinctions between different groups of potential immigrants, welcoming only those who would be compatible with their established way of life?

    These are certainly the kinds of questions dealt with in the present forum. Does Libertarianism offer meaningful contributions towards answering them? (Please note this is not a question directed at PhysicistDave; I'm just thinking out loud). Libertarianism appears to provide answers to the questions of yesterday, but not of tomorrow.

    I suppose my related question regarding heterodox thinkers like Hoppe and Mercer would be: How much longer will they consider the Libertarian banner to be a meaningful description of their thought?

    ChrisZ wrote, replying to me:

    For example, it’s one thing to say that we should not be forced to associate with people we don’t like. But the deeper question might be, Why do we associate in certain ways, with certain people, to begin with? What meaning does that hold for societies and nations? What is the value of historical continuity in a nation? And on what basis can a people make distinctions between different groups of potential immigrants, welcoming only those who would be compatible with their established way of life?

    These are certainly the kinds of questions dealt with in the present forum. Does Libertarianism offer meaningful contributions towards answering them? (Please note this is not a question directed at PhysicistDave; I’m just thinking out loud). Libertarianism appears to provide answers to the questions of yesterday, but not of tomorrow.

    Well, I agree with you that these are interesting and important questions. I also agree with you that libertarians have devoted too little attention to such questions in the past: to be sure, this is partly because there was an overwhelming consensus that of course countries could control their own borders, limit immigration, etc. among almost all political positions. (Note that I am referring to “libertarians,” rather than “Libertarians”: the Libertarian Party has become basically a liberal Republican party, but most libertarians are not Libertarians.)

    My own answer would be that before the rise of the Leviathan state, the issues you raised largely took care of themselves: i.e., people naturally sorted themselves out into communities and cultural groups in which they were happy. The major exceptions of course involved actions by the state — conquest, obviously, as well as systematic relocations of whole populations by the state (from the Assyrians to the Soviets).

    People simply sorting out social and cultural issues on their own never worked perfectly (nothing ever works perfectly!), and I myself have some complaints about the insularity and parochialism of traditional societies. Yet, it probably did work better than anything else that was practicable.

    People who wrote about even a megalopolis like New York City prior to the mid-twentieth century noted that NYC was more a collection of small relatively homogeneous communities than one single homogenized super-city.

    And, of course, Des Moines, Indianapolis, or my own hometown of St. Louis were very different from NYC, much less internationalist and cosmopolitan: yet even such inland towns were really collections of very different ethnically distinct neighborhoods (I know this of St. Louis from my own childhood).

    So, I think a good case can be made that human communities and cultures sort themselves out in the absence of centralized control just as free markets work without any centralized control.

    Of course, the Left labels this sort of natural sorting out as “segregation” and tries to destroy it, even when it is the result of voluntary individual choice.

    Yes, libertarians have focused more on economics than society and culture because, as you imply, that really was the relevant question fifty years ago: are we to follow the Soviet economic model or have free markets? That question of course still has some relevance (e.g., Obamacare does not work).

    And, yes, you are also right that libertarians need to start being serious about the questions you raise. The outstanding example of a scholar who is doing that is H.-H. Hoppe, and, more broadly, some people associated with the Mises Institute and the Lew Rockwell website (Rockwell is founder and chairman of Mises).

    But, I do think a compelling case can be made that decentralized free choice based on private property provably works not perfectly but better than any alternative in dealing with social and cultural issues as well as economic issues.

    Are most people who call themselves “libertarians” behind the curve on this? Indeed: exhibit A — Professor Somin.

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    • Replies: @ChrisZ
    Thanks again, Dave. It’s a pleasure corresponding.
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  155. Hibernian says:
    @Whiskey
    Bottom line, Open Borders and mass third world immigration are a done deal unless and until we can start the Ocasio Cortez faction the demand, that now that they really have thought about it, Bill Gates money and property really belongs to them. On account of their emotional labor on behalf of White people. And also Zuckerberg, Bezos, Buffett, and the most entertaining Supervillain oligarch of them all, Elon Musk.

    Start up a Viva La Raza! type movement to seize wealthy White men's money, and that border wall go up quicker than the Salem Witch Trials ended when the Wife of the Governor of Massachusetts was accused.

    Problem is they’re really into trading quite large portions of their wealth for power and they have no problem with grabbing a tiger by the tail and believing they can control him.

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  156. Hibernian says:
    @bomag

    The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.
     
    The vast majority of American homeowners live under a great number of building codes; regulations; and laws.

    Let's see how much sympathy Somin has for his neighbor who conducts live firing of heavy artillery; sells drugs; runs a brothel; and tells the IRS his house is 100% a business expense.

    “…runs a brothel; and tells the IRS his house is 100% a business expense.”

    I think those two go together quite well.

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  157. @Achmed E. Newman
    If you think you "own" any of the public infrastructure, try taking just one swing home from the playground. You may have paid for a whole lot more than that, but the cops will come knocking and wondering if you are nuts, while they're at it. OK, don't like that one? Try telling the parks department that you want them to keep that swingset up... the one they're tearing down due to the lawyers. They don't have to listen to a part-owner. No, they won't give it to you either. I tried to get a nice office chair out of the recycling dumpster after throwing something else in, and the people pitched a fit and threatened to call the cops.

    "Who does not own it must pay for it's usage." Yeah, same for public stuff. How'd you get out of paying property tax, utu?

    Achmed E. Newman wrote:

    If you think you “own” any of the public infrastructure, try taking just one swing home from the playground. You may have paid for a whole lot more than that, but the cops will come knocking and wondering if you are nuts, while they’re at it.

    No, it’s like owning shares in a corporation: if I buy some shares in GM, I can’t walk off with a couple of the PCs from corporate headquarters. Rather, I own the right to enjoy my share of the benefits from the ongoing operation of GM (e.g., dividends).

    Similarly, residents of a country in effect are shareholders in the public infrastructure of that country: they are entitled to enjoy the benefits of the infrastructure but cannot physically grab “their share” of it any more than a stockholder in GM can just grab some PCs from corporate headquarters.

    Of course, this was never spelled out explicitly in the past simply because the basic idea was so taken for granted by almost all human beings that no one needed to spell it out, just as you do not need to think about breathing unless you have some trouble with breathing.

    But, now there is indeed a great deal of trouble over who gets access to the public goods embodied in a particular country (almost always, of course, a Western country), and so there is now a need to be more explicit.

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    • Replies: @Kratoklastes
    The "ownership of shares in the commons" is a very bad metaphor. It is so bad that it qualifies as out-and-out bullshit; nobody would use it if they were concerned about its truth value (as opposed to its rhetorical value when the audience has median cognitive attributes and no training).

    Let's examine the most obvious flaw... the right to exit and be compensated.

    If I dislike the way AAPL is run, I can sell my holding of the stock and receive its market value. I might get more than I paid for the shares; I may get less... but I won't get zero.

    Contrast that with what happens if I dislike the way Australia is run.

    I can leave - but only so long as some other tax-farm is prepared to let me in (you literally are not permitted to leave your country permanently unless you havbe an existing entitlement to residency in another country).

    And if I leave, the value of my "holdings" of these mythical "shares in the nation" is magically re-priced... at zero.

    Conveniently, these magical shares are such that the value of everyone else's shareholding doesn't change. Sounds a bit Madoff-ish (or made-up-ish).

    I don't get back the amount that I have contributed on net (most 'taxpayers' are net recipients of tax when the value of tax-funded goods and services is tallied up). My shares - and only my shares - go to zero.

    Make government a subscription service and see how many people sign up. It won't be zero: the leadership cadres of organised religion discovered that they can still live in palaces in a totally-voluntary system.

    Maybe the leadership cadres of organised politics realise that there are only so many rubes to go around - hence the requirement for participation in their social-welfare-destroying tax-farms to be involuntary (from the POV of the livestock: of course it's the wealth-maximising option for the parasites of the political class and their camp-followers).
    , @EdwardM
    You can sell your shares in GM, but you can't sell your shares in the U.S. public infrastructure. As Walter Williams used to say, if you can't sell it, you don't own it.
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  158. utu says:
    @Achmed E. Newman
    If you think you "own" any of the public infrastructure, try taking just one swing home from the playground. You may have paid for a whole lot more than that, but the cops will come knocking and wondering if you are nuts, while they're at it. OK, don't like that one? Try telling the parks department that you want them to keep that swingset up... the one they're tearing down due to the lawyers. They don't have to listen to a part-owner. No, they won't give it to you either. I tried to get a nice office chair out of the recycling dumpster after throwing something else in, and the people pitched a fit and threatened to call the cops.

    "Who does not own it must pay for it's usage." Yeah, same for public stuff. How'd you get out of paying property tax, utu?

    Newman, you are an idiot.

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    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    OK, that explains it. Thx!
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  159. utu says:
    @Cloudbuster
    Why would there be no public infrastructure? Libertarianism calls for a small state, not no state. A lot of so-called libertarians seem to take a leap straight into anarchism, which is a far different and even more juvenile philosophy, without even bothering to note that they've made the leap.

    juvenile philosophy. – Correct except that there is no non juvenile libertarianism.

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    • Replies: @Cloudbuster
    You'll note I said "even more juvenile." I wasn't letting libertarianism off the hook. All modern forms of libertarianism run to the juvenile and utopian. However, I think you can make an argument that the original philosophy of the founders amounted to a non-juvenile libertarianism, though they didn't call it that.
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  160. Hibernian says:
    @Father O'Hara
    Ilya is a man's name. Didn't you ever watch "The Man From UNCLE"?

    Ilya Kuryakin.

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    • Replies: @ben tillman
    Ilya Ehrenburg.
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  161. @Hibernian
    Ilya Kuryakin.

    Ilya Ehrenburg.

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    • Replies: @Hibernian
    Kuryakin was the Ilya in "U.N.C.L.E." He was played by David Mc Callum; Napoleon Solo was played by Robert Vaughan. It was very liberal for the time (early to mid 60s) with a Russian and an American working together against common enemies. Mc Callum has recently had a regular major part in one of the NCIS shows as a character about 60-65 years old, although he must be at least 75 unless he was a young kid at the time he plated Kuryakin. Not totally sure if he's still alive, but if not, I think he was until fairly recently.
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  162. Hibernian says:
    @Big Bill

    Some of this exclusion would stay small–our street, our neighborhood, our town. But most of it would quickly scale up–because of the positive synergies/economies of scale and ethnic affinity–to regional groupings. And in many places the process would quickly recreate essentially the same nation state–all voluntarily with people freely ceding their right to invite in foreigners.
     
    This is precisely what happened in the USA after de jure segregation [i.e. segregation laws] was declared illegal. People then started putting racial and religious restrictive covenants on their property and thereby voluntarily "ceded their rights" to sell to other religions/races.

    Unfortunately, this "ceding their rights" arrangement is exactly what Shelley v. Kraemer (USSC 1948) struck down. To be a bit more precise, the USSC said that US courts cannot enforce racially exclusive covenants that run with the land. If a subsequent owner ever decided to violate the covenant and sell to a prohibited person, the surrounding land owners could not take him to court and enforce the covenant.

    The decision by the USSC suggests that there may be other ways to achieve the same goals. Even if the courts will not enforce covenants, there may be other contractual, ownership, or dispute resolution means to achieve the same restrictive effect.

    For example, do what the Jews do in Israel and have the official landowner be a white goy version of the Jewish National Fund, which leases all its land in Israel only to Jews.

    Many Jews in the USA fondly remember the little blue JNF donation boxes they kept in their homes to buy up goy land in Palestine.

    Covenants were abolished in 1948 so they presumably began before that. De jure segrgation was not declared unconstitutional except in very limited contexts (state graduate and professional schools) until 1954. It may be that the covenants were alternatives to de jure segregation in such places as “The Land of Lincoln,” of which I am a citizen. (I believe one landmark anti-covenant case concerned property in Chicago about 1 1/2 to 2 miles from where I live.)

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  163. Hibernian says:
    @Anonymous
    No poor bastard was ever drafted into the military to fight, die - or worse to be left permanently disabled - for pompous libertarian erroneous 'principles'.

    No. They fought, died, killed and were injured for *their country*.

    People like Somin are, in reality, shitting on every soldier whoever fought and died in a war.

    'You were chumps!' says Somin!

    'Ha ha ha!' You don't think that your political masters ever seriously believed in all that shit about 'your country' do you?'

    'Now fuck off and die, and let me bring in my pakis'.

    I think Revolutionary War veterans fought and died for a mild form of libertarianism (think of the Stamp Act, Navigation Act, etc.) and for their homes and kinfolk (think of the quartering of troops in private homes and the Boston Massacre.) The war since then have tended to be of the “War is a Racket” variety.

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    • Agree: Cloudbuster
    • Replies: @ben tillman

    I think Revolutionary War veterans fought and died for a mild form of libertarianism (think of the Stamp Act, Navigation Act, etc.) and for their homes and kinfolk (think of the quartering of troops in private homes and the Boston Massacre.) The war since then have tended to be of the “War is a Racket” variety.
     
    The War of 1812 may have been a Smedley Butler special on the other side of the Atlantic, but it was straight self-defense on this side.

    After that, I agree with you.
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  164. utu says:
    @PhysicistDave
    utu wrote to me:

    In the libertarian utopia there is no public infrastructure. Who does not own it must pay for its usage
     
    Indeed. And, a key theme of modern "welfare economics," transcending any specific ideology, is that if everything is privately owned, if property rights are completely clear and well-established, then "negative externalities" take care of themselves.

    Of course, the key word here is "if"! As any competent economist can tell you, it is debatable if a system of property rights can ever exist which completely "internalize negative externalities."

    And, in any case, our current political/legal system most assuredly does not do so.

    Slomin's problem is not that he takes libertarianism and welfare economics too seriously. Rather, he does not take them seriously enough. He has not thought through the entire matter, with all of the real-world complications, and how the theory does indeed deal with such real-world complications.

    Slomin is like a freshman who has learned F=ma and thinks he knows how to design a faster-than-light starship. Not only is life more complicated than that, but so is good theory.

    To put it bluntly, Slomin does not understand either economics or libertarianism. (In fairness, I too was young once and once held views similar to his. Fortunately, I learned more as I grew up. I'm not sure Slomin will.)

    If it it becomes politically expedient Slomin will use his sophistry to justify cannibalism. This not about his understanding of economics and libertarianism but about integrity and morality which he has none.

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    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    utu wrote to me:

    If it it becomes politically expedient Slomin will use his sophistry to justify cannibalism. This not about his understanding of economics and libertarianism but about integrity and morality which he has none.
     
    Well, I was tempted to be more charitable and ascribe it the naivete of youth... but Wikipedia says he was born in 1973.

    Those whom Hoppe calls "left libertarians" do seem to be motivated by an animus towards normal people, a bit like Hillary's hatred of "the basket of deplorables." My old friend Murray Rothbard labeled some of these folks "Luftmenschen" -- literally "people of air," implying that they were people without any real, substantial lives.

    I myself was involved in the local Sacramento Libertarian Party three decades ago. I eventually withdrew when my wife decided that she really preferred not to deal with most of these people. (Note: Libertarian Party members in Des Moines may be perfectly sane -- I'm just referring to my own experience.)

    From my experiences interacting with members of other "fringe" political groups, I've noticed that such groups, whatever their ideological orientation, tend to attract pretty weird people. So maybe it's not libertarians per se but simply a matter of unhappy misfits tending disproportionately to gravitate to groups outside of the mainstream.
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  165. Dr. Doom says:

    Dear White People,

    We hate you. We want everything you built and worked for. Speaking as someone who isn’t White and wants you all dead, I say you are evil if you don’t hand it over. This overly pathetic argument hides the veiled threat of a dying system that is afraid you will use your guns to mow them down like crabgrass. When you look at Haiti, Zimbabwe and Venezuela, its all White people’s fault. Give us everything and let us rape your women. Yum yum. Get with it. Chop chop. Even China wants you to. You have no chance. Blah blah. (insert sob story here) Its White people that ruin everything.

    Signed,
    Token mediocrity
    Diverse masks for Globalists LLC

    No comments or alternate opinions allowed.
    Paid for by Rothschild Bankum and Steal

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  166. Hibernian says:
    @ben tillman
    Ilya Ehrenburg.

    Kuryakin was the Ilya in “U.N.C.L.E.” He was played by David Mc Callum; Napoleon Solo was played by Robert Vaughan. It was very liberal for the time (early to mid 60s) with a Russian and an American working together against common enemies. Mc Callum has recently had a regular major part in one of the NCIS shows as a character about 60-65 years old, although he must be at least 75 unless he was a young kid at the time he plated Kuryakin. Not totally sure if he’s still alive, but if not, I think he was until fairly recently.

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  167. @utu
    juvenile philosophy. - Correct except that there is no non juvenile libertarianism.

    You’ll note I said “even more juvenile.” I wasn’t letting libertarianism off the hook. All modern forms of libertarianism run to the juvenile and utopian. However, I think you can make an argument that the original philosophy of the founders amounted to a non-juvenile libertarianism, though they didn’t call it that.

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    • Agree: utu
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  168. ChrisZ says:
    @PhysicistDave
    ChrisZ wrote, replying to me:

    For example, it’s one thing to say that we should not be forced to associate with people we don’t like. But the deeper question might be, Why do we associate in certain ways, with certain people, to begin with? What meaning does that hold for societies and nations? What is the value of historical continuity in a nation? And on what basis can a people make distinctions between different groups of potential immigrants, welcoming only those who would be compatible with their established way of life?

    These are certainly the kinds of questions dealt with in the present forum. Does Libertarianism offer meaningful contributions towards answering them? (Please note this is not a question directed at PhysicistDave; I’m just thinking out loud). Libertarianism appears to provide answers to the questions of yesterday, but not of tomorrow.
     
    Well, I agree with you that these are interesting and important questions. I also agree with you that libertarians have devoted too little attention to such questions in the past: to be sure, this is partly because there was an overwhelming consensus that of course countries could control their own borders, limit immigration, etc. among almost all political positions. (Note that I am referring to "libertarians," rather than "Libertarians": the Libertarian Party has become basically a liberal Republican party, but most libertarians are not Libertarians.)

    My own answer would be that before the rise of the Leviathan state, the issues you raised largely took care of themselves: i.e., people naturally sorted themselves out into communities and cultural groups in which they were happy. The major exceptions of course involved actions by the state -- conquest, obviously, as well as systematic relocations of whole populations by the state (from the Assyrians to the Soviets).

    People simply sorting out social and cultural issues on their own never worked perfectly (nothing ever works perfectly!), and I myself have some complaints about the insularity and parochialism of traditional societies. Yet, it probably did work better than anything else that was practicable.

    People who wrote about even a megalopolis like New York City prior to the mid-twentieth century noted that NYC was more a collection of small relatively homogeneous communities than one single homogenized super-city.

    And, of course, Des Moines, Indianapolis, or my own hometown of St. Louis were very different from NYC, much less internationalist and cosmopolitan: yet even such inland towns were really collections of very different ethnically distinct neighborhoods (I know this of St. Louis from my own childhood).

    So, I think a good case can be made that human communities and cultures sort themselves out in the absence of centralized control just as free markets work without any centralized control.

    Of course, the Left labels this sort of natural sorting out as "segregation" and tries to destroy it, even when it is the result of voluntary individual choice.

    Yes, libertarians have focused more on economics than society and culture because, as you imply, that really was the relevant question fifty years ago: are we to follow the Soviet economic model or have free markets? That question of course still has some relevance (e.g., Obamacare does not work).

    And, yes, you are also right that libertarians need to start being serious about the questions you raise. The outstanding example of a scholar who is doing that is H.-H. Hoppe, and, more broadly, some people associated with the Mises Institute and the Lew Rockwell website (Rockwell is founder and chairman of Mises).

    But, I do think a compelling case can be made that decentralized free choice based on private property provably works not perfectly but better than any alternative in dealing with social and cultural issues as well as economic issues.

    Are most people who call themselves "libertarians" behind the curve on this? Indeed: exhibit A -- Professor Somin.

    Thanks again, Dave. It’s a pleasure corresponding.

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  169. @utu
    Newman, you are an idiot.

    OK, that explains it. Thx!

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  170. Mr. Anon says:

    Your nation………………..that isn’t a club.

    But Ilya Somin’s law school at George Mason University………………that is a club – protected by archane rules of tenure. If Ilya Somin and his collegues black-ball you, you don’t get in to their club.

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  171. @Whiskey
    Bottom line, Open Borders and mass third world immigration are a done deal unless and until we can start the Ocasio Cortez faction the demand, that now that they really have thought about it, Bill Gates money and property really belongs to them. On account of their emotional labor on behalf of White people. And also Zuckerberg, Bezos, Buffett, and the most entertaining Supervillain oligarch of them all, Elon Musk.

    Start up a Viva La Raza! type movement to seize wealthy White men's money, and that border wall go up quicker than the Salem Witch Trials ended when the Wife of the Governor of Massachusetts was accused.

    I think this is the first time I’ve ever found myself agreeing with Whiskey.

    But yeah the open borders premise basically flows from the idea that the third world should have automatic access to the developed world because of colonialism, hereditarial privilege is unfair yadda yadda. Well from that premise any old working or middle class Joe can then make a pretty convincing argument that they have the right to plunder the wealth of the elites.

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  172. My ancestry goes way back in this country – virtually all of it to the 17th or early 18th Centuries: Mayflower, Massachusetts Bay, New Netherland, and Jamestown. I suppose in a lot of ways that doesn’t mean much, but Ilya Somin is an a) immigrant who uses b) shitty arguments to call c) native-born Americans d) racists for opposing open borders into *our* country.

    Somin, meanwhile, is a citizen of a) the USA who, as a Jew, has the right to move to b) Israel or even back to c) Russia. If he doesn’t like America he has other options easly available. For probably about 200 million Americans those options aren’t really there. If this country is ruined we’re pretty much screwed.

    If he actually had a halfway decent argument and didn’t stoop to calling his opponents racists I would completely overlook the fact that he’s an immigrant.

    A few things wrong with the points he makes:

    1) There is such a thing as shared property. Has Somin ever heard of a publicly traded corporation? The ground is thick with them. Virtually all of the USA’s GDP is generated from jointly owned enterprises. Even many private, family owned corporations have multiple shareholders, and it is not easy for one of the part-owners to extricate himself if the rest of the owners don’t let him do what he wants with his property.

    2) Democracy – especially today – is all about telling other people what to do with their property, or taking it from them through force and giving it to someone else. Until Somin has some solution for that problem, and some way to ensure the newcomers from doing that when they become a majority (hint: there isn’t one) then he needs to stop yammering about the “force” that is used when a majority of voters oppose open borders

    3) Governments in the USA (federal, state, local) own huge amounts of real and very valuable property. That property is held in trust for the people. There are roads, schools, government offices, military equipment, national parks, national forests, state parks, wilderness areas, water rights, etc. Just as one example, the USA has the largest known oil shale reserves in all the world – an estimated 3.7 *trillion* barrels worth, probably the bulk of it on publicly owned lands. A barrel of of oil currently goes for $70. That amounts to $260 TRILLION worth of oil, or over $800,000 worth for every US citizen. And that’s just oil shale.

    Bring in more people and you dilute the per capita value of America’s natural resources. One thing you’ll notice if you look at a list of the world’s richest countries is that they tend to be the least densely populated of the (ethnically) European countries. Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, the USA, Canada, and Australia are all richer than most every other European country.

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  173. What’s reassuring is to read the comments both at the Washington Post and at his other article at Reason. Those sites don’t exactly have the same readership as, say, Breitbart or Unz or Ace, but the comments are still overwhelmingly against Somin.

    A) We’ve turned a corner in this country. Fewer and fewer people, especially on the right, buy into open borders arguments.

    B) Dozens of ridiculous arguments the open borders lobby has been pushing for decades are now dismissed out of hand.

    C) Allegations of racism against people who favor border control no longer carry any weight.

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  174. @utu
    If it it becomes politically expedient Slomin will use his sophistry to justify cannibalism. This not about his understanding of economics and libertarianism but about integrity and morality which he has none.

    utu wrote to me:

    If it it becomes politically expedient Slomin will use his sophistry to justify cannibalism. This not about his understanding of economics and libertarianism but about integrity and morality which he has none.

    Well, I was tempted to be more charitable and ascribe it the naivete of youth… but Wikipedia says he was born in 1973.

    Those whom Hoppe calls “left libertarians” do seem to be motivated by an animus towards normal people, a bit like Hillary’s hatred of “the basket of deplorables.” My old friend Murray Rothbard labeled some of these folks “Luftmenschen” — literally “people of air,” implying that they were people without any real, substantial lives.

    I myself was involved in the local Sacramento Libertarian Party three decades ago. I eventually withdrew when my wife decided that she really preferred not to deal with most of these people. (Note: Libertarian Party members in Des Moines may be perfectly sane — I’m just referring to my own experience.)

    From my experiences interacting with members of other “fringe” political groups, I’ve noticed that such groups, whatever their ideological orientation, tend to attract pretty weird people. So maybe it’s not libertarians per se but simply a matter of unhappy misfits tending disproportionately to gravitate to groups outside of the mainstream.

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  175. Anonymous[105] • Disclaimer says:

    Bob Whitaker developed the idea of societal property rights in his book, the New Right Papers. Might be time to investigate it.

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  176. Art Deco says:
    @Buck Turgidson
    This guy from gmu is totally detached from the reality of immigration and cultural issues. All he knows is numbers on a spread sheet. He has his own open borders ideology and ill bet he does not live in pg county md. Why not? Its less expensive and crime there is just misunderstood by morons who dont look at spread sheets. These are the ppl running univs that cost parents $30-40k/yr.

    Ground Zero for immigrant settlement in NoVa is Prince William County. We can check the numbers, but I don’t think it has anywhere near the issues with street crime that Prince George’s has. The crime in greater Washington is quite concentrated in the more southwesterly section of the District and in four of the six segments of Prince George’s, with the Prince George’s segments safer than the DC neighborhoods. PG is safer than it was 20 years ago and the District vastly safer (but still not that secure).

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  177. Anon[168] • Disclaimer says:

    LOL this is also an argument for why corporations should not be permitted to own property. Pretty sure Koch/heads like Somin won’t go there

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  178. Art Deco says:
    @Achilles

    But it can also justify all kinds of repressive government policies that target natives, as well. If a state has the same powers over land within the national territory as a homeowner has over her house, then the state has broad power to suppress speech and religion the rulers disapprove of.
     
    This is such a childish argument by Somin.

    I hate to have to tell you this, little Ilyashka, but there are limits and boundaries to human behavior even in a nation that tries to recognize broad freedoms of speech and religion.

    Ultimately these freedoms are constrained by the necessarily metaphysical perspective of (in other words, moral, or ethical if you prefer) standards of human behavior that are inherent in the civilization from which such nation is formed.

    For America, that is a fundamentally Christian metaphysical perspective, in a very broad sense, recognizing a Creator from whom human beings have existence and by reason of which human beings have a certain dignity that implies rights that governments, to be just, must respect and which carries along with that a number of other conceptions of the significance of human beings in creation and our relationship to it.

    If someone, say, from Central America wishes to immigrate to the USA and sincerely practice the religion of his ancestors which in that person's sincere understanding requires human sacrifice to appease his gods, then nevertheless our laws will not permit him to exercise his religion in that way, notwithstanding our constitutional guarantee of freedom of religion. This is because everything, including the Constitution, must be understood in the context of the metaphysical perspective of the civilization which has produced it.

    In the USA this has worked remarkably well for centuries even through a few rough patches, bringing into our ambit peoples with a moral perspective deriving from various strains of Christian Protestantism, Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodox and Mormons among others as well as reasonably small populations of village atheists and adherents to some eastern religions such as Buddhism.

    But unfortunately this has failed miserably in the attempt to assimilate Jews into America on the basis of some sort of 'Judeo-Christian' metaphysical understanding. The hyperethnocentrism of the Jews has proven an insurmountable obstacle, and perhaps we would have known better had we carefully studied the disastrous centuries of experience of Jewish/non-Jewish relations in Eastern Europe before admitting to our nation a large population consisting of that group.

    The hyperethnocentrism of the Jews has proven an insurmountable obstacle

    MBITRW, the Jewish population in this country is imploding from inter-marriage and the subset of that population least inclined to be antagonistic to features of the social and cultural order which prevailed prior to about 1966 are the Orthodox, who commonly keep their dealings with the larger society strictly professional.

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  179. @Hibernian
    I think Revolutionary War veterans fought and died for a mild form of libertarianism (think of the Stamp Act, Navigation Act, etc.) and for their homes and kinfolk (think of the quartering of troops in private homes and the Boston Massacre.) The war since then have tended to be of the "War is a Racket" variety.

    I think Revolutionary War veterans fought and died for a mild form of libertarianism (think of the Stamp Act, Navigation Act, etc.) and for their homes and kinfolk (think of the quartering of troops in private homes and the Boston Massacre.) The war since then have tended to be of the “War is a Racket” variety.

    The War of 1812 may have been a Smedley Butler special on the other side of the Atlantic, but it was straight self-defense on this side.

    After that, I agree with you.

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  180. Anonymous[532] • Disclaimer says:

    Is Objectivism still a thing?

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  181. sabril says:

    Maybe instead of a house, a better metaphor would be a lifeboat.

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  182. @Art Deco
    Modern libertarian thought is dominated by Catholic universalists

    I think you'll discover the social overlap between active Catholics and the libertarian nexus is precisely zero. The man who ran the Buckeye Institute many years ago has been in the course of his life a public promoter of libertarian thinking and a promoter of the Church, but not at the same time. He once said he began to leave the libertarian fold twenty years ago when he realized its leading lights generally had one thing in common: childlessness (he had five at last count). The closest you get to a Catholic libertarian is an old school admirer of Calvin Coolidge. The U.S. Catholic Conference and many diocesan chanceries are promoters of what amounts to open borders, not because they take any interest in libertarian thinking, but because the Church in its decadent state hires from the same pool that generic NGOs do. The writer Amy Welborn said many years ago that in decades of traveling the country and seeing the church-o-cracy at work she'd concluded that the main vector motivating them was 'bored-out-of-their-minds-careerism'.

    The Church doesn’t have a lot to do at this point, now that Christendom and the Dar-al-Islam have declared a truce (for now) and welfare state generosity enables the poor to indulge the sins of the Biblical rich.

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  183. densa says:
    @Achilles
    So, yet another sophistical argument against American self-government. Because, of course, Americans might choose to govern themselves, such as in immigration policy, in ways that happen not to coincide with perceived Jewish transnational ethno-group interest.

    Taken to its logical conclusion, Somin's principle would mean no law should be considered proper unless it has the unanimous approval of everyone in the community bound by such law.

    After all, if even one person desires not to be constrained by a particular law, then that law is unfair to that person in the same sense that immigration law is unfair to the person who wishes to illegally bring in a foreign national to whom to sell his house.


    1 of them votes to let them in because he’s a decent human being
     
    Ever notice how they often try to smuggle moral arguments into what is supposedly a dispassionate economic or property-rights analysis? And that their 'morality' at bottom is nothing more than the narrow self-interest of their own particular group as against those they consider their enemies?

    This is my agree button. They also never mention that this decent one violates the rights of the indecent eight who desire to live with fences. Mr. Decent is in the wrong HOA, possibly the wrong country. He should move.

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  184. anonn says:
    @Bill

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought. Even leftists gave it grudging admiration because it claimed to proceed from purely rational principle,
     
    That's because libertarianism is a species of leftist thought.

    Do you have any idea what either libertarians or leftists think?. Libertarianism is a pretend philosophy ginned up by enormously wealthy trustfunders from mostly conservative thought and classical liberalism. You can blame libertarianism on conservative sellouts and certainly on autistic liberals, but its slavish devotion to the absolute power of inherited wealth is 100% at odds with actual left thought.

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  185. M_Young says:
    @Steve Sailer
    The vast majority of American homeowners neither live in wealthy co-ops, nor are governed by homeowner’s associations.

    And the vast majority live under zoning, except in Houston, where HOAs are common.

    The vast majority of new housing in immigration impacted SoCal is HOA, and has been for a couple of decades. In fact, I’ll bet there is a correlation between prevalence of HOAs (and their uber cousins, gate-guarded communities) and immigrant presence.

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    • Replies: @Anonymous
    Unless you live in a mansion with lots of acreage or a closer in, older suburb adjacent to or affiliated with an actual town or city, HOAs make sense for suburban developments, regardless of immigrants. HOAs organize services like trash pickup and lawn care, maintain neighborhood amenities like pools and tennis courts, etc.
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  186. A nation’s still a nation
    Even when no limit’s put on immigration.
    But a nation is not a house,
    And a house is not a home
    When just anyone
    Can come inside;
    Even Mexicans,
    Whom I can’t abide.

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  187. Anonymous[276] • Disclaimer says:
    @M_Young
    The vast majority of new housing in immigration impacted SoCal is HOA, and has been for a couple of decades. In fact, I'll bet there is a correlation between prevalence of HOAs (and their uber cousins, gate-guarded communities) and immigrant presence.

    Unless you live in a mansion with lots of acreage or a closer in, older suburb adjacent to or affiliated with an actual town or city, HOAs make sense for suburban developments, regardless of immigrants. HOAs organize services like trash pickup and lawn care, maintain neighborhood amenities like pools and tennis courts, etc.

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  188. @ben tillman

    Also Somin is a libertarian, and libertarians minimize ‘externatlities’ in general (see pollution). Of course if you talk about ‘externalities’ a lot you might as well abolish private property period and join the DSA.
     
    Is there anything that imposes more negative externalities than immigration?

    The whole point of immigration is that it enables some people to seize their fellow countrymen's positive externalities for themselves.

    Is there anything that imposes more negative externalities than immigration?

    Yes. War, for a start. IP Monopolies, for seconds. Tariffs, for thirds. Taxation, for fourths.

    All of those things impose deadweight costs that dwarf any discernible negative impact that results from immigration.

    To put it in perspective, the deadweight loss from taxation is (roughly) 30% – that is, to collect a dollar of taxes costs 30 cents in economic activity that simply goes away, or is misdirected to non-preferred uses (e.g., costs of compliance). To spend one fully-funded dollar, governments must collect $1.20 in taxes; that they then spend the money on vanity projects that are themselves destructive of social welfare just adds insult to injury.

    So anyhow… if anyone actually bothers to do the calculations, government causes more externalities than it solves. That is a result that is so robust that it should be an axiom.

    As to externalities from immigration…

    Generally when people talk about externalities from immigration they are generally thinking about immigration from non-white areas: nobody argues that there’s any social issue that arises if a country lets in a bunch of Swedes or Norwegians.

    So the anti-migrant camp talks about disutilities associated with some sort of “loss of culture”, or reduction in “social cohesion” (which is code for de-whitening of the demos).

    Those disutilities are almost entirely concentrated in a reactionary segment of the community who seldom interact with migrants anyhow; they’re more or less offset by the utility obtained by people who think multiculturalism creates a more vibrant society (and who do tend to interact with migrants, if only by going to Taco Bell).

    I’m not playing “conservatard/libtard” on this, because I don’t give a shit either way: my personal preference is to have as little to do with the demos as possible, so I don’t give a shit about its racial composition. (I’m the guy who can live in a house for five years and never have a conversation with the ‘neighbour’: misanthropy is a patrilinear trait in my family).

    Anyhow – my preferences only matter for me: back to the issue.

    Some folks will try to use anecdotes to support claims that immigration leads to increases in crime rates – and they will assert that illegal immigration causes more increased crime than legal immigration.

    They don’t seem to care that the data simply does not support that assertion. Even if the data did support the claim, crimes are not externalities; not every adverse consequence of a policy is an externality.

    Let’s dive into the data dumpster (defining ‘serious’ crime as violent crime plus property crime, and noting that serious crime has been falling rapidly since the mid-90s):
    ① city-level rates of serious crime correlate negatively with the proportion of the total population that are foreign-born (see [1] and [2]);
    ② state-level rates of serious crime correlate positively with the proportion of the total population that are white trash (the worst states are Louisiana, Alabama, Alaska, Tennessee, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Arkansas, Delaware, and Missouri – see [3]);
    ③ tract-level rates of serious crime are uncorrelated with the proportion of immigrants (for Austin, TX – see [4])
    ④ racial propensities to commit serious crime seem to go “Black > White > Latino” (see [5])

    So it’s very hard to make the case that the decline in serious crime since the 90s would be even more faster if there were fewer immigrants. (Oddly, second- and third-generation immigrant offspring commit crimes at higher-than-usual rates: so people whose grandparents immigrated to the US 75 years ago are risky fuckers).

    There are very plausible reasons why immigrants – and particularly illegal immigrants – should be expected to be less involved in crime: namely, that they face deportation if apprehended. As such, they keep their heads down (and this shows up in the statistics).

    It’s always possible to find a sensational news report where an illegal Mexican is charged with the rape and murder of a blonde, blue-eyed little girl: those things happen, it’s terrible that they happen, and if the arrested person is guilty (rather than a target of convenience for law enforcement) then they’re in deep shit. It still doesn’t make anecdote-based analysis useful.

    Disclosure: the research centre that I worked at in the 90s was constantly involved in a media imbroglio over immigration (in Austrralia) – in part because one of the country’s most vocal anti-immigration academics was on the floor below us. It was easy for journalists to get sound bites from us if they were out filming Bob.

    Our centre’s weltanschauung was unapologetically economic-rationalist: so we advocated for unilateral dismantling of trade barriers, liberalisation of labour markets, a freely-floating exchange rate, unimpeded international capital flows … all the standard elements of laissez faire.

    The Centre’s view on immigration restrictions was one of complete agnosticism: in theory it should be welfare-enhancing in aggregate, but as far as we could determine from the data, such restrictions as were in place had no discernible effect on things that matter (output per capita, and the rate of capital accumulation, being two of the important key metrics).

    Theoretically, immigration also adds to pressure on social infrastructure – which can be viewed as having been funded by past generations of citizens.

    That might make you think that migrants who bring no capital with them are a drain… until you realise that all the infrastructure was built using deficit financing, and so more taxpaying “hands on deck” actually reduces the budgetary pressure on the existing domestic tax base (and with government waste as significant as it is, any reduction in tax rates carries with it the most significant externality-amelioration that exists in a modern economy: to reiterate – governments cause more externalities than they solve).

    My personal view is that if a country is prepared to permit my money to cross its borders without let or hindrance, it should permit my body to do so – but in the 90s that and $2.40 would get you a coffee in the West End café.

    References

    (note: if you copy and paste the link references into sci-hub.tw it will give you the PDF of the paper if it’s not a publicly-available resource)

    [1] Stowell, Messner, McGeever, and Raffalovich (2009) Immigration and the recent violent crime drop in the United States: A pooled, cross-sectional time-series analysis of metropolitan areas. Criminology, 47, pp889–928.
    [2] Ousey and Kubrin (2014) Immigration and the changing nature of homicide in US cities, 1980–2010. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 30, pp453–483.
    [3] Frohlich, Stebbins, & Sauter, 2015 America’s most violent (and most peaceful) states
    [4] Stansfield, Akins, Rumbaut, and Hammer (2013) Assessing the effects of recent immigration on serious property crime in Austin, Texas. Sociological Perspectives, 56(4), pp647–672.
    [5] Sampson, Morenoff, and Raudenbush (2005) Social anatomy of racial and ethnic disparities in violence. American Journal of Public Health, 95(2), pp224–232.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anonymous
    Bollocks.


    Just look up 'Schaeffer's Number' - and try to lie your way out of that one.
    , @Anonymous
    Baby-talk.

    Saudi Arabia is very happy to let you take their oil -for cash - from their nation, but they won't let you in. And who cares anyway?
    Similarly stockholders in corporations be it through direct investment or mutualized fund generally do not personally know the staff and workers of the corporation or even visited the business premises, but are happy for their money to do what money does rather than transport their physical carcasses where it's not wanted.

    If you don't like the country don't put your money there.

    That's the beauty of capitalism it deals with cash and cash only.
    There's no need to move to Pakistan to wear a cotton undershorts.
    , @Anonymous
    Liar.

    Big, fat, shameless duplicitous liar, in fact.

    The most desirable neighborhoods for living in the USA, (in terms of lack of crime, lack of societal dysfunction, social cohesion, social capital, quality of life, happiness agreeableness, pleasantness etc etc), all happen to highly correlated with the white percentage of the neighborhood population. Think of Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Utah the Upper Midwest etc.
    , @PhysicistDave
    Kratoklastes wrote:


    ben tillman wrote:

    Is there anything that imposes more negative externalities than immigration?
     

    Kratoklastes replied: Yes. War, for a start. IP Monopolies, for seconds. Tariffs, for thirds. Taxation, for fourths.

    All of those things impose deadweight costs that dwarf any discernible negative impact that results from immigration.
     

    War, taxation, and tariffs do indeed cause a great deal of harm. And, having gone through the patent-application process myself several times, I'll admit that "intellectual property" does more harm than good.

    Conceivably all of those things cause more harm than the normal historical levels of immigration.

    But, what is under serious political debate today is the concept of levels of immigration imposed by the government upon the native population that completely dwarf the historical levels of immigration.

    Do you really doubt that if the Left gets its way and the federal government forces Americans to accept as many immigrant from sub-Saharan Africa as may choose to come here then America as we know it will cease to exist?

    Size matters.

    A minor nuisance can become a major disaster if multiplied ten-fold or a hundred-fold.

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  189. @PhysicistDave
    Achmed E. Newman wrote:

    If you think you “own” any of the public infrastructure, try taking just one swing home from the playground. You may have paid for a whole lot more than that, but the cops will come knocking and wondering if you are nuts, while they’re at it.
     
    No, it's like owning shares in a corporation: if I buy some shares in GM, I can't walk off with a couple of the PCs from corporate headquarters. Rather, I own the right to enjoy my share of the benefits from the ongoing operation of GM (e.g., dividends).

    Similarly, residents of a country in effect are shareholders in the public infrastructure of that country: they are entitled to enjoy the benefits of the infrastructure but cannot physically grab "their share" of it any more than a stockholder in GM can just grab some PCs from corporate headquarters.

    Of course, this was never spelled out explicitly in the past simply because the basic idea was so taken for granted by almost all human beings that no one needed to spell it out, just as you do not need to think about breathing unless you have some trouble with breathing.

    But, now there is indeed a great deal of trouble over who gets access to the public goods embodied in a particular country (almost always, of course, a Western country), and so there is now a need to be more explicit.

    The “ownership of shares in the commons” is a very bad metaphor. It is so bad that it qualifies as out-and-out bullshit; nobody would use it if they were concerned about its truth value (as opposed to its rhetorical value when the audience has median cognitive attributes and no training).

    Let’s examine the most obvious flaw… the right to exit and be compensated.

    If I dislike the way AAPL is run, I can sell my holding of the stock and receive its market value. I might get more than I paid for the shares; I may get less… but I won’t get zero.

    Contrast that with what happens if I dislike the way Australia is run.

    I can leave – but only so long as some other tax-farm is prepared to let me in (you literally are not permitted to leave your country permanently unless you havbe an existing entitlement to residency in another country).

    And if I leave, the value of my “holdings” of these mythical “shares in the nation” is magically re-priced… at zero.

    Conveniently, these magical shares are such that the value of everyone else’s shareholding doesn’t change. Sounds a bit Madoff-ish (or made-up-ish).

    I don’t get back the amount that I have contributed on net (most ‘taxpayers’ are net recipients of tax when the value of tax-funded goods and services is tallied up). My shares – and only my shares – go to zero.

    Make government a subscription service and see how many people sign up. It won’t be zero: the leadership cadres of organised religion discovered that they can still live in palaces in a totally-voluntary system.

    Maybe the leadership cadres of organised politics realise that there are only so many rubes to go around – hence the requirement for participation in their social-welfare-destroying tax-farms to be involuntary (from the POV of the livestock: of course it’s the wealth-maximising option for the parasites of the political class and their camp-followers).

    Read More
    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    Kratoklastes wrote to me:

    The “ownership of shares in the commons” is a very bad metaphor.
     
    I do not much like the government, and I do not much like the idea of "publicly-owned" goods. I do not think we should have been taxed and taxed and taxed to pay for goods many of us did not even want (e.g., the famed "bridge to nowhere").

    But we were. And, if there is to be any justice in the world, surely those of us who paid for (or whose ancestors paid for) these "public goods" should be entitled to benefit from them, rather than having those benefits destroyed by giving them away for free to people who did not pay for them.

    I have no illusion that the world is some sort of libertarian utopia. But can we not at least adhere to the simple standards of justice that were almost universal just a few decades ago -- that people who paid for something are entitled to benefit from it?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  190. Anon[229] • Disclaimer says:

    Those damned aristocratic Palestinian, Tibetan, and Uighurs must be taught a lesson by progressive imperialism.

    Read More
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  191. Anonymous[135] • Disclaimer says:
    @Kratoklastes

    Is there anything that imposes more negative externalities than immigration?
     
    Yes. War, for a start. IP Monopolies, for seconds. Tariffs, for thirds. Taxation, for fourths.

    All of those things impose deadweight costs that dwarf any discernible negative impact that results from immigration.

    To put it in perspective, the deadweight loss from taxation is (roughly) 30% - that is, to collect a dollar of taxes costs 30 cents in economic activity that simply goes away, or is misdirected to non-preferred uses (e.g., costs of compliance). To spend one fully-funded dollar, governments must collect $1.20 in taxes; that they then spend the money on vanity projects that are themselves destructive of social welfare just adds insult to injury.

    So anyhow... if anyone actually bothers to do the calculations, government causes more externalities than it solves. That is a result that is so robust that it should be an axiom.

    As to externalities from immigration...

    Generally when people talk about externalities from immigration they are generally thinking about immigration from non-white areas: nobody argues that there's any social issue that arises if a country lets in a bunch of Swedes or Norwegians.

    So the anti-migrant camp talks about disutilities associated with some sort of "loss of culture", or reduction in "social cohesion" (which is code for de-whitening of the demos).

    Those disutilities are almost entirely concentrated in a reactionary segment of the community who seldom interact with migrants anyhow; they're more or less offset by the utility obtained by people who think multiculturalism creates a more vibrant society (and who do tend to interact with migrants, if only by going to Taco Bell).

    I'm not playing "conservatard/libtard" on this, because I don't give a shit either way: my personal preference is to have as little to do with the demos as possible, so I don't give a shit about its racial composition. (I'm the guy who can live in a house for five years and never have a conversation with the 'neighbour': misanthropy is a patrilinear trait in my family).

    Anyhow - my preferences only matter for me: back to the issue.

    Some folks will try to use anecdotes to support claims that immigration leads to increases in crime rates - and they will assert that illegal immigration causes more increased crime than legal immigration.

    They don't seem to care that the data simply does not support that assertion. Even if the data did support the claim, crimes are not externalities; not every adverse consequence of a policy is an externality.

    Let's dive into the data dumpster (defining 'serious' crime as violent crime plus property crime, and noting that serious crime has been falling rapidly since the mid-90s):
    ① city-level rates of serious crime correlate negatively with the proportion of the total population that are foreign-born (see [1] and [2]);
    ② state-level rates of serious crime correlate positively with the proportion of the total population that are white trash (the worst states are Louisiana, Alabama, Alaska, Tennessee, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Arkansas, Delaware, and Missouri - see [3]);
    ③ tract-level rates of serious crime are uncorrelated with the proportion of immigrants (for Austin, TX - see [4])
    ④ racial propensities to commit serious crime seem to go "Black > White > Latino" (see [5])

    So it's very hard to make the case that the decline in serious crime since the 90s would be even more faster if there were fewer immigrants. (Oddly, second- and third-generation immigrant offspring commit crimes at higher-than-usual rates: so people whose grandparents immigrated to the US 75 years ago are risky fuckers).

    There are very plausible reasons why immigrants - and particularly illegal immigrants - should be expected to be less involved in crime: namely, that they face deportation if apprehended. As such, they keep their heads down (and this shows up in the statistics).

    It's always possible to find a sensational news report where an illegal Mexican is charged with the rape and murder of a blonde, blue-eyed little girl: those things happen, it's terrible that they happen, and if the arrested person is guilty (rather than a target of convenience for law enforcement) then they're in deep shit. It still doesn't make anecdote-based analysis useful.

    Disclosure: the research centre that I worked at in the 90s was constantly involved in a media imbroglio over immigration (in Austrralia) - in part because one of the country's most vocal anti-immigration academics was on the floor below us. It was easy for journalists to get sound bites from us if they were out filming Bob.

    Our centre's weltanschauung was unapologetically economic-rationalist: so we advocated for unilateral dismantling of trade barriers, liberalisation of labour markets, a freely-floating exchange rate, unimpeded international capital flows ... all the standard elements of laissez faire.

    The Centre's view on immigration restrictions was one of complete agnosticism: in theory it should be welfare-enhancing in aggregate, but as far as we could determine from the data, such restrictions as were in place had no discernible effect on things that matter (output per capita, and the rate of capital accumulation, being two of the important key metrics).

    Theoretically, immigration also adds to pressure on social infrastructure - which can be viewed as having been funded by past generations of citizens.

    That might make you think that migrants who bring no capital with them are a drain... until you realise that all the infrastructure was built using deficit financing, and so more taxpaying "hands on deck" actually reduces the budgetary pressure on the existing domestic tax base (and with government waste as significant as it is, any reduction in tax rates carries with it the most significant externality-amelioration that exists in a modern economy: to reiterate - governments cause more externalities than they solve).

    My personal view is that if a country is prepared to permit my money to cross its borders without let or hindrance, it should permit my body to do so - but in the 90s that and $2.40 would get you a coffee in the West End café.

    References

    (note: if you copy and paste the link references into sci-hub.tw it will give you the PDF of the paper if it's not a publicly-available resource)

    [1] Stowell, Messner, McGeever, and Raffalovich (2009) Immigration and the recent violent crime drop in the United States: A pooled, cross-sectional time-series analysis of metropolitan areas. Criminology, 47, pp889–928.
    [2] Ousey and Kubrin (2014) Immigration and the changing nature of homicide in US cities, 1980–2010. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 30, pp453–483.
    [3] Frohlich, Stebbins, & Sauter, 2015 America’s most violent (and most peaceful) states
    [4] Stansfield, Akins, Rumbaut, and Hammer (2013) Assessing the effects of recent immigration on serious property crime in Austin, Texas. Sociological Perspectives, 56(4), pp647–672.
    [5] Sampson, Morenoff, and Raudenbush (2005) Social anatomy of racial and ethnic disparities in violence. American Journal of Public Health, 95(2), pp224–232.

    Bollocks.

    Just look up ‘Schaeffer’s Number’ – and try to lie your way out of that one.

    Read More
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  192. EdwardM says:
    @PhysicistDave
    Achmed E. Newman wrote:

    If you think you “own” any of the public infrastructure, try taking just one swing home from the playground. You may have paid for a whole lot more than that, but the cops will come knocking and wondering if you are nuts, while they’re at it.
     
    No, it's like owning shares in a corporation: if I buy some shares in GM, I can't walk off with a couple of the PCs from corporate headquarters. Rather, I own the right to enjoy my share of the benefits from the ongoing operation of GM (e.g., dividends).

    Similarly, residents of a country in effect are shareholders in the public infrastructure of that country: they are entitled to enjoy the benefits of the infrastructure but cannot physically grab "their share" of it any more than a stockholder in GM can just grab some PCs from corporate headquarters.

    Of course, this was never spelled out explicitly in the past simply because the basic idea was so taken for granted by almost all human beings that no one needed to spell it out, just as you do not need to think about breathing unless you have some trouble with breathing.

    But, now there is indeed a great deal of trouble over who gets access to the public goods embodied in a particular country (almost always, of course, a Western country), and so there is now a need to be more explicit.

    You can sell your shares in GM, but you can’t sell your shares in the U.S. public infrastructure. As Walter Williams used to say, if you can’t sell it, you don’t own it.

    Read More
    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    EdwardM wrote to me:

    You can sell your shares in GM, but you can’t sell your shares in the U.S. public infrastructure. As Walter Williams used to say, if you can’t sell it, you don’t own it.
     
    Indeed. But if we cannot have full ownership rights in the infrastructure that we and our ancesotrs paid for, can we not at least have the right to continue to enjoy the benefits from that infrastructure?

    The right of usufruct may not be full ownership, but are we to be denied even that?
    , @International Jew
    Partnerships. (See my response to Physicist Dave.)
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  193. Anonymous[135] • Disclaimer says:
    @Kratoklastes

    Is there anything that imposes more negative externalities than immigration?
     
    Yes. War, for a start. IP Monopolies, for seconds. Tariffs, for thirds. Taxation, for fourths.

    All of those things impose deadweight costs that dwarf any discernible negative impact that results from immigration.

    To put it in perspective, the deadweight loss from taxation is (roughly) 30% - that is, to collect a dollar of taxes costs 30 cents in economic activity that simply goes away, or is misdirected to non-preferred uses (e.g., costs of compliance). To spend one fully-funded dollar, governments must collect $1.20 in taxes; that they then spend the money on vanity projects that are themselves destructive of social welfare just adds insult to injury.

    So anyhow... if anyone actually bothers to do the calculations, government causes more externalities than it solves. That is a result that is so robust that it should be an axiom.

    As to externalities from immigration...

    Generally when people talk about externalities from immigration they are generally thinking about immigration from non-white areas: nobody argues that there's any social issue that arises if a country lets in a bunch of Swedes or Norwegians.

    So the anti-migrant camp talks about disutilities associated with some sort of "loss of culture", or reduction in "social cohesion" (which is code for de-whitening of the demos).

    Those disutilities are almost entirely concentrated in a reactionary segment of the community who seldom interact with migrants anyhow; they're more or less offset by the utility obtained by people who think multiculturalism creates a more vibrant society (and who do tend to interact with migrants, if only by going to Taco Bell).

    I'm not playing "conservatard/libtard" on this, because I don't give a shit either way: my personal preference is to have as little to do with the demos as possible, so I don't give a shit about its racial composition. (I'm the guy who can live in a house for five years and never have a conversation with the 'neighbour': misanthropy is a patrilinear trait in my family).

    Anyhow - my preferences only matter for me: back to the issue.

    Some folks will try to use anecdotes to support claims that immigration leads to increases in crime rates - and they will assert that illegal immigration causes more increased crime than legal immigration.

    They don't seem to care that the data simply does not support that assertion. Even if the data did support the claim, crimes are not externalities; not every adverse consequence of a policy is an externality.

    Let's dive into the data dumpster (defining 'serious' crime as violent crime plus property crime, and noting that serious crime has been falling rapidly since the mid-90s):
    ① city-level rates of serious crime correlate negatively with the proportion of the total population that are foreign-born (see [1] and [2]);
    ② state-level rates of serious crime correlate positively with the proportion of the total population that are white trash (the worst states are Louisiana, Alabama, Alaska, Tennessee, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Arkansas, Delaware, and Missouri - see [3]);
    ③ tract-level rates of serious crime are uncorrelated with the proportion of immigrants (for Austin, TX - see [4])
    ④ racial propensities to commit serious crime seem to go "Black > White > Latino" (see [5])

    So it's very hard to make the case that the decline in serious crime since the 90s would be even more faster if there were fewer immigrants. (Oddly, second- and third-generation immigrant offspring commit crimes at higher-than-usual rates: so people whose grandparents immigrated to the US 75 years ago are risky fuckers).

    There are very plausible reasons why immigrants - and particularly illegal immigrants - should be expected to be less involved in crime: namely, that they face deportation if apprehended. As such, they keep their heads down (and this shows up in the statistics).

    It's always possible to find a sensational news report where an illegal Mexican is charged with the rape and murder of a blonde, blue-eyed little girl: those things happen, it's terrible that they happen, and if the arrested person is guilty (rather than a target of convenience for law enforcement) then they're in deep shit. It still doesn't make anecdote-based analysis useful.

    Disclosure: the research centre that I worked at in the 90s was constantly involved in a media imbroglio over immigration (in Austrralia) - in part because one of the country's most vocal anti-immigration academics was on the floor below us. It was easy for journalists to get sound bites from us if they were out filming Bob.

    Our centre's weltanschauung was unapologetically economic-rationalist: so we advocated for unilateral dismantling of trade barriers, liberalisation of labour markets, a freely-floating exchange rate, unimpeded international capital flows ... all the standard elements of laissez faire.

    The Centre's view on immigration restrictions was one of complete agnosticism: in theory it should be welfare-enhancing in aggregate, but as far as we could determine from the data, such restrictions as were in place had no discernible effect on things that matter (output per capita, and the rate of capital accumulation, being two of the important key metrics).

    Theoretically, immigration also adds to pressure on social infrastructure - which can be viewed as having been funded by past generations of citizens.

    That might make you think that migrants who bring no capital with them are a drain... until you realise that all the infrastructure was built using deficit financing, and so more taxpaying "hands on deck" actually reduces the budgetary pressure on the existing domestic tax base (and with government waste as significant as it is, any reduction in tax rates carries with it the most significant externality-amelioration that exists in a modern economy: to reiterate - governments cause more externalities than they solve).

    My personal view is that if a country is prepared to permit my money to cross its borders without let or hindrance, it should permit my body to do so - but in the 90s that and $2.40 would get you a coffee in the West End café.

    References

    (note: if you copy and paste the link references into sci-hub.tw it will give you the PDF of the paper if it's not a publicly-available resource)

    [1] Stowell, Messner, McGeever, and Raffalovich (2009) Immigration and the recent violent crime drop in the United States: A pooled, cross-sectional time-series analysis of metropolitan areas. Criminology, 47, pp889–928.
    [2] Ousey and Kubrin (2014) Immigration and the changing nature of homicide in US cities, 1980–2010. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 30, pp453–483.
    [3] Frohlich, Stebbins, & Sauter, 2015 America’s most violent (and most peaceful) states
    [4] Stansfield, Akins, Rumbaut, and Hammer (2013) Assessing the effects of recent immigration on serious property crime in Austin, Texas. Sociological Perspectives, 56(4), pp647–672.
    [5] Sampson, Morenoff, and Raudenbush (2005) Social anatomy of racial and ethnic disparities in violence. American Journal of Public Health, 95(2), pp224–232.

    Baby-talk.

    Saudi Arabia is very happy to let you take their oil -for cash – from their nation, but they won’t let you in. And who cares anyway?
    Similarly stockholders in corporations be it through direct investment or mutualized fund generally do not personally know the staff and workers of the corporation or even visited the business premises, but are happy for their money to do what money does rather than transport their physical carcasses where it’s not wanted.

    If you don’t like the country don’t put your money there.

    That’s the beauty of capitalism it deals with cash and cash only.
    There’s no need to move to Pakistan to wear a cotton undershorts.

    Read More
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  194. Anonymous[780] • Disclaimer says:
    @Kratoklastes

    Is there anything that imposes more negative externalities than immigration?
     
    Yes. War, for a start. IP Monopolies, for seconds. Tariffs, for thirds. Taxation, for fourths.

    All of those things impose deadweight costs that dwarf any discernible negative impact that results from immigration.

    To put it in perspective, the deadweight loss from taxation is (roughly) 30% - that is, to collect a dollar of taxes costs 30 cents in economic activity that simply goes away, or is misdirected to non-preferred uses (e.g., costs of compliance). To spend one fully-funded dollar, governments must collect $1.20 in taxes; that they then spend the money on vanity projects that are themselves destructive of social welfare just adds insult to injury.

    So anyhow... if anyone actually bothers to do the calculations, government causes more externalities than it solves. That is a result that is so robust that it should be an axiom.

    As to externalities from immigration...

    Generally when people talk about externalities from immigration they are generally thinking about immigration from non-white areas: nobody argues that there's any social issue that arises if a country lets in a bunch of Swedes or Norwegians.

    So the anti-migrant camp talks about disutilities associated with some sort of "loss of culture", or reduction in "social cohesion" (which is code for de-whitening of the demos).

    Those disutilities are almost entirely concentrated in a reactionary segment of the community who seldom interact with migrants anyhow; they're more or less offset by the utility obtained by people who think multiculturalism creates a more vibrant society (and who do tend to interact with migrants, if only by going to Taco Bell).

    I'm not playing "conservatard/libtard" on this, because I don't give a shit either way: my personal preference is to have as little to do with the demos as possible, so I don't give a shit about its racial composition. (I'm the guy who can live in a house for five years and never have a conversation with the 'neighbour': misanthropy is a patrilinear trait in my family).

    Anyhow - my preferences only matter for me: back to the issue.

    Some folks will try to use anecdotes to support claims that immigration leads to increases in crime rates - and they will assert that illegal immigration causes more increased crime than legal immigration.

    They don't seem to care that the data simply does not support that assertion. Even if the data did support the claim, crimes are not externalities; not every adverse consequence of a policy is an externality.

    Let's dive into the data dumpster (defining 'serious' crime as violent crime plus property crime, and noting that serious crime has been falling rapidly since the mid-90s):
    ① city-level rates of serious crime correlate negatively with the proportion of the total population that are foreign-born (see [1] and [2]);
    ② state-level rates of serious crime correlate positively with the proportion of the total population that are white trash (the worst states are Louisiana, Alabama, Alaska, Tennessee, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Arkansas, Delaware, and Missouri - see [3]);
    ③ tract-level rates of serious crime are uncorrelated with the proportion of immigrants (for Austin, TX - see [4])
    ④ racial propensities to commit serious crime seem to go "Black > White > Latino" (see [5])

    So it's very hard to make the case that the decline in serious crime since the 90s would be even more faster if there were fewer immigrants. (Oddly, second- and third-generation immigrant offspring commit crimes at higher-than-usual rates: so people whose grandparents immigrated to the US 75 years ago are risky fuckers).

    There are very plausible reasons why immigrants - and particularly illegal immigrants - should be expected to be less involved in crime: namely, that they face deportation if apprehended. As such, they keep their heads down (and this shows up in the statistics).

    It's always possible to find a sensational news report where an illegal Mexican is charged with the rape and murder of a blonde, blue-eyed little girl: those things happen, it's terrible that they happen, and if the arrested person is guilty (rather than a target of convenience for law enforcement) then they're in deep shit. It still doesn't make anecdote-based analysis useful.

    Disclosure: the research centre that I worked at in the 90s was constantly involved in a media imbroglio over immigration (in Austrralia) - in part because one of the country's most vocal anti-immigration academics was on the floor below us. It was easy for journalists to get sound bites from us if they were out filming Bob.

    Our centre's weltanschauung was unapologetically economic-rationalist: so we advocated for unilateral dismantling of trade barriers, liberalisation of labour markets, a freely-floating exchange rate, unimpeded international capital flows ... all the standard elements of laissez faire.

    The Centre's view on immigration restrictions was one of complete agnosticism: in theory it should be welfare-enhancing in aggregate, but as far as we could determine from the data, such restrictions as were in place had no discernible effect on things that matter (output per capita, and the rate of capital accumulation, being two of the important key metrics).

    Theoretically, immigration also adds to pressure on social infrastructure - which can be viewed as having been funded by past generations of citizens.

    That might make you think that migrants who bring no capital with them are a drain... until you realise that all the infrastructure was built using deficit financing, and so more taxpaying "hands on deck" actually reduces the budgetary pressure on the existing domestic tax base (and with government waste as significant as it is, any reduction in tax rates carries with it the most significant externality-amelioration that exists in a modern economy: to reiterate - governments cause more externalities than they solve).

    My personal view is that if a country is prepared to permit my money to cross its borders without let or hindrance, it should permit my body to do so - but in the 90s that and $2.40 would get you a coffee in the West End café.

    References

    (note: if you copy and paste the link references into sci-hub.tw it will give you the PDF of the paper if it's not a publicly-available resource)

    [1] Stowell, Messner, McGeever, and Raffalovich (2009) Immigration and the recent violent crime drop in the United States: A pooled, cross-sectional time-series analysis of metropolitan areas. Criminology, 47, pp889–928.
    [2] Ousey and Kubrin (2014) Immigration and the changing nature of homicide in US cities, 1980–2010. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 30, pp453–483.
    [3] Frohlich, Stebbins, & Sauter, 2015 America’s most violent (and most peaceful) states
    [4] Stansfield, Akins, Rumbaut, and Hammer (2013) Assessing the effects of recent immigration on serious property crime in Austin, Texas. Sociological Perspectives, 56(4), pp647–672.
    [5] Sampson, Morenoff, and Raudenbush (2005) Social anatomy of racial and ethnic disparities in violence. American Journal of Public Health, 95(2), pp224–232.

    Liar.

    Big, fat, shameless duplicitous liar, in fact.

    The most desirable neighborhoods for living in the USA, (in terms of lack of crime, lack of societal dysfunction, social cohesion, social capital, quality of life, happiness agreeableness, pleasantness etc etc), all happen to highly correlated with the white percentage of the neighborhood population. Think of Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Utah the Upper Midwest etc.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Kratoklastes
    Nice work - you're a case-study in Dunning-Kruger (and the broader problem of cognitive and metacognitive shortcomings that are endemic outside of the very top sliver of the IQ distribution).

    Refute the studies I cited, or cite other studies that furnish an evidentiary refutation - I am always happy to find new data that doesn't confirm my existing conclusions.

    But what's not going to change anybody's mind is bringing pissweak "liar liar pants on fire" evidence-free fucktardery to this debate - because it just makes you look like a retard with no argument.

    The problem you have is that the data is pretty clear: the link between location and "desirability" (at least, as it's affected by levels of serious crime) is via poverty and lack of social cohesion, not immigration.

    Poor immigrants commit crime at lower rates than their black and white socioeconomic peers; despite the fact that immigrants tend to be poor, communities that tilt poor-immigrant actually have higher levels of social cohesion that do poor whites or blacks.

    And let's be clear: nobody was saying that "Little Tijuana" is a better place to live than the Hamptons or Cape Cod, for fuck's sake.

    What the data says is that there's a good likelihood that it's better to live among poor immigrants than among white trash - if the aim is to be exposed to less violence and serious crime.

    That might jar with your opinion, but opinions are worth exactly zero in a world where people value actual evidence.

    To make the example more concentrated: it's not about comparing a rich WASP enclave with a part of El Paso dominated by Barrio Azteca - because neither of those things is remotely representative.

    In the same way, if you're interested in evidence-based policy, you don't look for cohort-wide differentials in violence between black and white by comparing Watts with Haight-Ashbury - again, because neither of those places is representative.

    Besides, you're completely wrong about the "white percentage" of the population as a useful predictive metric: while the 'best' states for levels of serious crime are majority white, the worst states are majority-white too.

    The list of the outright worst states (for levels of serious crime) - which I listed in my original comment - reads like a Klansman's origin story: lots of uneducated, unemployed, poor white-trash crackers living in trailer parks. It really does suck to be white trash, pretty much anywhere in the Western world: they have lives with high levels of serious crime and intra-cohort violence.

    That is an empirically solid indicator that whiteness per se does not confer a reduction in propensity for serious crime.

    If you had written the "percentage of rich whites", it would have been more clear that you were stating the obvious - wealthy people choose nice places to live... but that's not the point I was making (and besides, it also applies to rich blacks, Latinos, Hungarians and Scandinavians - anyone who's not mentally ill, prefers a nice neighbourhood... if they can afford it).

    The point I was making - solidly referenced and backed by empirical data - was that if you're going to fill a place with poor people, it's better if they're Mexican than if they're White Trash (or black).

    It's also better if they're old; old, poor immigrants commit virtually no crime. Nobody's arguing that the migrant intake should skew towards poor, old folks.
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  195. @Kratoklastes
    The "ownership of shares in the commons" is a very bad metaphor. It is so bad that it qualifies as out-and-out bullshit; nobody would use it if they were concerned about its truth value (as opposed to its rhetorical value when the audience has median cognitive attributes and no training).

    Let's examine the most obvious flaw... the right to exit and be compensated.

    If I dislike the way AAPL is run, I can sell my holding of the stock and receive its market value. I might get more than I paid for the shares; I may get less... but I won't get zero.

    Contrast that with what happens if I dislike the way Australia is run.

    I can leave - but only so long as some other tax-farm is prepared to let me in (you literally are not permitted to leave your country permanently unless you havbe an existing entitlement to residency in another country).

    And if I leave, the value of my "holdings" of these mythical "shares in the nation" is magically re-priced... at zero.

    Conveniently, these magical shares are such that the value of everyone else's shareholding doesn't change. Sounds a bit Madoff-ish (or made-up-ish).

    I don't get back the amount that I have contributed on net (most 'taxpayers' are net recipients of tax when the value of tax-funded goods and services is tallied up). My shares - and only my shares - go to zero.

    Make government a subscription service and see how many people sign up. It won't be zero: the leadership cadres of organised religion discovered that they can still live in palaces in a totally-voluntary system.

    Maybe the leadership cadres of organised politics realise that there are only so many rubes to go around - hence the requirement for participation in their social-welfare-destroying tax-farms to be involuntary (from the POV of the livestock: of course it's the wealth-maximising option for the parasites of the political class and their camp-followers).

    Kratoklastes wrote to me:

    The “ownership of shares in the commons” is a very bad metaphor.

    I do not much like the government, and I do not much like the idea of “publicly-owned” goods. I do not think we should have been taxed and taxed and taxed to pay for goods many of us did not even want (e.g., the famed “bridge to nowhere”).

    But we were. And, if there is to be any justice in the world, surely those of us who paid for (or whose ancestors paid for) these “public goods” should be entitled to benefit from them, rather than having those benefits destroyed by giving them away for free to people who did not pay for them.

    I have no illusion that the world is some sort of libertarian utopia. But can we not at least adhere to the simple standards of justice that were almost universal just a few decades ago — that people who paid for something are entitled to benefit from it?

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  196. @EdwardM
    You can sell your shares in GM, but you can't sell your shares in the U.S. public infrastructure. As Walter Williams used to say, if you can't sell it, you don't own it.

    EdwardM wrote to me:

    You can sell your shares in GM, but you can’t sell your shares in the U.S. public infrastructure. As Walter Williams used to say, if you can’t sell it, you don’t own it.

    Indeed. But if we cannot have full ownership rights in the infrastructure that we and our ancesotrs paid for, can we not at least have the right to continue to enjoy the benefits from that infrastructure?

    The right of usufruct may not be full ownership, but are we to be denied even that?

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    • Replies: @International Jew
    Good point, and I'd add: the world isn't all corporations. The principals in a partnership — say a group medical practice, most law firms, members of a New York co-op — can't readily sell their shares either. But that doesn't in any way mean they don't own something!
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  197. @Kratoklastes

    Is there anything that imposes more negative externalities than immigration?
     
    Yes. War, for a start. IP Monopolies, for seconds. Tariffs, for thirds. Taxation, for fourths.

    All of those things impose deadweight costs that dwarf any discernible negative impact that results from immigration.

    To put it in perspective, the deadweight loss from taxation is (roughly) 30% - that is, to collect a dollar of taxes costs 30 cents in economic activity that simply goes away, or is misdirected to non-preferred uses (e.g., costs of compliance). To spend one fully-funded dollar, governments must collect $1.20 in taxes; that they then spend the money on vanity projects that are themselves destructive of social welfare just adds insult to injury.

    So anyhow... if anyone actually bothers to do the calculations, government causes more externalities than it solves. That is a result that is so robust that it should be an axiom.

    As to externalities from immigration...

    Generally when people talk about externalities from immigration they are generally thinking about immigration from non-white areas: nobody argues that there's any social issue that arises if a country lets in a bunch of Swedes or Norwegians.

    So the anti-migrant camp talks about disutilities associated with some sort of "loss of culture", or reduction in "social cohesion" (which is code for de-whitening of the demos).

    Those disutilities are almost entirely concentrated in a reactionary segment of the community who seldom interact with migrants anyhow; they're more or less offset by the utility obtained by people who think multiculturalism creates a more vibrant society (and who do tend to interact with migrants, if only by going to Taco Bell).

    I'm not playing "conservatard/libtard" on this, because I don't give a shit either way: my personal preference is to have as little to do with the demos as possible, so I don't give a shit about its racial composition. (I'm the guy who can live in a house for five years and never have a conversation with the 'neighbour': misanthropy is a patrilinear trait in my family).

    Anyhow - my preferences only matter for me: back to the issue.

    Some folks will try to use anecdotes to support claims that immigration leads to increases in crime rates - and they will assert that illegal immigration causes more increased crime than legal immigration.

    They don't seem to care that the data simply does not support that assertion. Even if the data did support the claim, crimes are not externalities; not every adverse consequence of a policy is an externality.

    Let's dive into the data dumpster (defining 'serious' crime as violent crime plus property crime, and noting that serious crime has been falling rapidly since the mid-90s):
    ① city-level rates of serious crime correlate negatively with the proportion of the total population that are foreign-born (see [1] and [2]);
    ② state-level rates of serious crime correlate positively with the proportion of the total population that are white trash (the worst states are Louisiana, Alabama, Alaska, Tennessee, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Arkansas, Delaware, and Missouri - see [3]);
    ③ tract-level rates of serious crime are uncorrelated with the proportion of immigrants (for Austin, TX - see [4])
    ④ racial propensities to commit serious crime seem to go "Black > White > Latino" (see [5])

    So it's very hard to make the case that the decline in serious crime since the 90s would be even more faster if there were fewer immigrants. (Oddly, second- and third-generation immigrant offspring commit crimes at higher-than-usual rates: so people whose grandparents immigrated to the US 75 years ago are risky fuckers).

    There are very plausible reasons why immigrants - and particularly illegal immigrants - should be expected to be less involved in crime: namely, that they face deportation if apprehended. As such, they keep their heads down (and this shows up in the statistics).

    It's always possible to find a sensational news report where an illegal Mexican is charged with the rape and murder of a blonde, blue-eyed little girl: those things happen, it's terrible that they happen, and if the arrested person is guilty (rather than a target of convenience for law enforcement) then they're in deep shit. It still doesn't make anecdote-based analysis useful.

    Disclosure: the research centre that I worked at in the 90s was constantly involved in a media imbroglio over immigration (in Austrralia) - in part because one of the country's most vocal anti-immigration academics was on the floor below us. It was easy for journalists to get sound bites from us if they were out filming Bob.

    Our centre's weltanschauung was unapologetically economic-rationalist: so we advocated for unilateral dismantling of trade barriers, liberalisation of labour markets, a freely-floating exchange rate, unimpeded international capital flows ... all the standard elements of laissez faire.

    The Centre's view on immigration restrictions was one of complete agnosticism: in theory it should be welfare-enhancing in aggregate, but as far as we could determine from the data, such restrictions as were in place had no discernible effect on things that matter (output per capita, and the rate of capital accumulation, being two of the important key metrics).

    Theoretically, immigration also adds to pressure on social infrastructure - which can be viewed as having been funded by past generations of citizens.

    That might make you think that migrants who bring no capital with them are a drain... until you realise that all the infrastructure was built using deficit financing, and so more taxpaying "hands on deck" actually reduces the budgetary pressure on the existing domestic tax base (and with government waste as significant as it is, any reduction in tax rates carries with it the most significant externality-amelioration that exists in a modern economy: to reiterate - governments cause more externalities than they solve).

    My personal view is that if a country is prepared to permit my money to cross its borders without let or hindrance, it should permit my body to do so - but in the 90s that and $2.40 would get you a coffee in the West End café.

    References

    (note: if you copy and paste the link references into sci-hub.tw it will give you the PDF of the paper if it's not a publicly-available resource)

    [1] Stowell, Messner, McGeever, and Raffalovich (2009) Immigration and the recent violent crime drop in the United States: A pooled, cross-sectional time-series analysis of metropolitan areas. Criminology, 47, pp889–928.
    [2] Ousey and Kubrin (2014) Immigration and the changing nature of homicide in US cities, 1980–2010. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 30, pp453–483.
    [3] Frohlich, Stebbins, & Sauter, 2015 America’s most violent (and most peaceful) states
    [4] Stansfield, Akins, Rumbaut, and Hammer (2013) Assessing the effects of recent immigration on serious property crime in Austin, Texas. Sociological Perspectives, 56(4), pp647–672.
    [5] Sampson, Morenoff, and Raudenbush (2005) Social anatomy of racial and ethnic disparities in violence. American Journal of Public Health, 95(2), pp224–232.

    Kratoklastes wrote:

    ben tillman wrote:

    Is there anything that imposes more negative externalities than immigration?

    Kratoklastes replied: Yes. War, for a start. IP Monopolies, for seconds. Tariffs, for thirds. Taxation, for fourths.

    All of those things impose deadweight costs that dwarf any discernible negative impact that results from immigration.

    War, taxation, and tariffs do indeed cause a great deal of harm. And, having gone through the patent-application process myself several times, I’ll admit that “intellectual property” does more harm than good.

    Conceivably all of those things cause more harm than the normal historical levels of immigration.

    But, what is under serious political debate today is the concept of levels of immigration imposed by the government upon the native population that completely dwarf the historical levels of immigration.

    Do you really doubt that if the Left gets its way and the federal government forces Americans to accept as many immigrant from sub-Saharan Africa as may choose to come here then America as we know it will cease to exist?

    Size matters.

    A minor nuisance can become a major disaster if multiplied ten-fold or a hundred-fold.

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  198. @AnotherDad
    The pension debacle is one of those things which really deserves a Constitutional amendment to fix.

    Politicians should never be able to promise spending beyond their term in office. Public employees should not get defined benefit pensions--ever. (Note, i don't think anyone should really be getting them, this is probably a good rule for corporate execs and labor contracts.) If a politician wants public employees to have good pensions, that money should be delivered--to their pension fund--right then and there. And the politician then faces the voters, the taxpayers who can transparently assess his use of funds.

    Public employee pensions are, by design, a way to deceive the public about what they’re actually paying gov’t workers. Anyone can understand cash, but it takes an actuary to figure out what a pension is worth. (Or if not a certified actuary, someone who understands expected present value better than do most of the MBAs I’ve met.)

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  199. @Achmed E. Newman
    This stuff is a problem at the state and local level, hence a Constitutional Amendment should have nothing to do with it. Now, state constitutions, on the other hand ....

    This brings up a slightly OT point (well, off-topic to your comment's topic) that there is a reason that the public pension problems are not occurring at the US Federal level. The FEDS can just print more money. The States can't ... which is a very good thing .... but, yeah, don't count on seeing all that pension money they promised you. I have a friend who retired from our State's government from a legit occupation. I couldn't tell her, because it's not really my business, but do wish she would take some kind of lump sum payment now.

    The FEDS can just print more money.

    All that means is that the Feds can avoid a bankruptcy that finally focuses people’s minds. “Printing money” means creating purchasing power — placed of course in the government’s hands — and is thus equivalent to a stealth tax.

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    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    You may have misinterpreted my comment, IJ. I didn't, by any means, mean that the FED's ability to cntl-P money out of thin air is a GOOD thing. I just meant that the State's non-ability to do so is a good thing.

    Yes, more dollars mean inflation by definition. Inflation is theft, and this tax is so insidious that I will admit that I didn't use to understand that interest rates are not supposed to equal inflation (as if that was the purpose of interest) . Yes, it's a stealth tax, indeed.

    You sound like another Dr. Ron Paul fan, and I'd be glad to know that.
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  200. @PhysicistDave
    EdwardM wrote to me:

    You can sell your shares in GM, but you can’t sell your shares in the U.S. public infrastructure. As Walter Williams used to say, if you can’t sell it, you don’t own it.
     
    Indeed. But if we cannot have full ownership rights in the infrastructure that we and our ancesotrs paid for, can we not at least have the right to continue to enjoy the benefits from that infrastructure?

    The right of usufruct may not be full ownership, but are we to be denied even that?

    Good point, and I’d add: the world isn’t all corporations. The principals in a partnership — say a group medical practice, most law firms, members of a New York co-op — can’t readily sell their shares either. But that doesn’t in any way mean they don’t own something!

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  201. @EdwardM
    You can sell your shares in GM, but you can't sell your shares in the U.S. public infrastructure. As Walter Williams used to say, if you can't sell it, you don't own it.

    Partnerships. (See my response to Physicist Dave.)

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  202. @Lot
    What? While it is a low bar, Tucker has the bravest and best political show on TV.

    Ok, I’ll give him credit for the “brave” part (no small thing in our day). But whenever I click on one of those Youtube clips entitled something like “Tucker Carlson pwns flaming liberal” I’m disappointed to see ol’ Tucker missing opportunity after opportunity.

    He’s no sharper than Megyn Kelly, his predecessor, and he doesn’t have her legs.

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    • Replies: @International Jew
    Here's who I wish they'd replace him with.
    https://youtu.be/2jdhGI0P8J4
    Ann is better impromptu than Tucker is even when he has the advantage of controlling the conversation.
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  203. @International Jew
    Ok, I'll give him credit for the "brave" part (no small thing in our day). But whenever I click on one of those Youtube clips entitled something like "Tucker Carlson pwns flaming liberal" I'm disappointed to see ol' Tucker missing opportunity after opportunity.

    He's no sharper than Megyn Kelly, his predecessor, and he doesn't have her legs.

    Here’s who I wish they’d replace him with.

    Ann is better impromptu than Tucker is even when he has the advantage of controlling the conversation.

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  204. @Thomas

    Libertarianism until recently held great prestige in the spectrum of right-leaning thought.
     
    https://image.ibb.co/b3XOK8/libertarians_2012_vs_2017.jpg

    In an ideal world, the appearance of the 2017 Libertarians would have nothing to do with the validity of their viewpoints.

    Sadly, we don’t live in that world.

    I’m not sure of the gender of the one on the right. I think the one on the left is a woman.

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  205. Romanian says: • Website
    @Daniel Williams

    The open borders utopia would be an interesting place. People in gated communities would have the same right to exclude outsiders that was once exercised by the government on a national level.
     
    This is one of the major premises in Neal Stephenson's excellent novel Snow Crash. Even if you're not a fan of science fiction, it's worth a read. The author does a great job of imagining how people might sort themselves into communities—some ethnic, some ideological, etc.—without being forced to use one currency or obey one nation's laws, despite living very close together.

    When it gets down to it — talking trade balances here — once we’ve brain-drained all our technology into other countries, once things have evened out, they’re making cars in Bolivia and microwave ovens in Tadzhikistan and selling them here — once our edge in natural resources has been made irrelevant by giant Hong Kong ships and dirigibles that can ship North Dakota all the way to New Zealand for a nickel — once the Invisible Hand has taken away all those historical inequities and smeared them out into a broad global layer of what a Pakistani brickmaker would consider to be prosperity — y’know what? There’s only four things we do better than anyone else:
    music
    movies
    microcode (software)
    high-speed pizza delivery

    Is no. 3 still on the table?

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  206. @International Jew

    The FEDS can just print more money.
     
    All that means is that the Feds can avoid a bankruptcy that finally focuses people's minds. "Printing money" means creating purchasing power — placed of course in the government's hands — and is thus equivalent to a stealth tax.

    You may have misinterpreted my comment, IJ. I didn’t, by any means, mean that the FED’s ability to cntl-P money out of thin air is a GOOD thing. I just meant that the State’s non-ability to do so is a good thing.

    Yes, more dollars mean inflation by definition. Inflation is theft, and this tax is so insidious that I will admit that I didn’t use to understand that interest rates are not supposed to equal inflation (as if that was the purpose of interest) . Yes, it’s a stealth tax, indeed.

    You sound like another Dr. Ron Paul fan, and I’d be glad to know that.

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  207. You sound like another Dr. Ron Paul fan, and I’d be glad to know that.

    I’m not (and as a card-carrying economist, I could have my PhD rescinded if I admitted I was ;) ) But don’t worry, the idea that inflation is a tax is entirely mainstream in the economics profession. Yes, even Paul Krugman, though he considers it a good thing.

    What is controversial is the idea that inflation is primarily caused by having too much money around. (Though even this isn’t at all controversial, if you’re talking about printing money like Weimar Germany or Zimbabwe. It’s only controversial at moderate rates of money creation like here in the US. I know, that’s kinda like saying it’s ok to take a battery-powered radio into the bathtub, but not a 1500W hair dryer.)

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  208. @Anonymous
    Liar.

    Big, fat, shameless duplicitous liar, in fact.

    The most desirable neighborhoods for living in the USA, (in terms of lack of crime, lack of societal dysfunction, social cohesion, social capital, quality of life, happiness agreeableness, pleasantness etc etc), all happen to highly correlated with the white percentage of the neighborhood population. Think of Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Utah the Upper Midwest etc.

    Nice work – you’re a case-study in Dunning-Kruger (and the broader problem of cognitive and metacognitive shortcomings that are endemic outside of the very top sliver of the IQ distribution).

    Refute the studies I cited, or cite other studies that furnish an evidentiary refutation – I am always happy to find new data that doesn’t confirm my existing conclusions.

    But what’s not going to change anybody‘s mind is bringing pissweak “liar liar pants on fire” evidence-free fucktardery to this debate – because it just makes you look like a retard with no argument.

    The problem you have is that the data is pretty clear: the link between location and “desirability” (at least, as it’s affected by levels of serious crime) is via poverty and lack of social cohesion, not immigration.

    Poor immigrants commit crime at lower rates than their black and white socioeconomic peers; despite the fact that immigrants tend to be poor, communities that tilt poor-immigrant actually have higher levels of social cohesion that do poor whites or blacks.

    And let’s be clear: nobody was saying that “Little Tijuana” is a better place to live than the Hamptons or Cape Cod, for fuck’s sake.

    What the data says is that there’s a good likelihood that it’s better to live among poor immigrants than among white trash – if the aim is to be exposed to less violence and serious crime.

    That might jar with your opinion, but opinions are worth exactly zero in a world where people value actual evidence.

    To make the example more concentrated: it’s not about comparing a rich WASP enclave with a part of El Paso dominated by Barrio Azteca – because neither of those things is remotely representative.

    In the same way, if you’re interested in evidence-based policy, you don’t look for cohort-wide differentials in violence between black and white by comparing Watts with Haight-Ashbury – again, because neither of those places is representative.

    Besides, you’re completely wrong about the “white percentage” of the population as a useful predictive metric: while the ‘best’ states for levels of serious crime are majority white, the worst states are majority-white too.

    The list of the outright worst states (for levels of serious crime) – which I listed in my original comment – reads like a Klansman’s origin story: lots of uneducated, unemployed, poor white-trash crackers living in trailer parks. It really does suck to be white trash, pretty much anywhere in the Western world: they have lives with high levels of serious crime and intra-cohort violence.

    That is an empirically solid indicator that whiteness per se does not confer a reduction in propensity for serious crime.

    If you had written the “percentage of rich whites”, it would have been more clear that you were stating the obvious – wealthy people choose nice places to live… but that’s not the point I was making (and besides, it also applies to rich blacks, Latinos, Hungarians and Scandinavians – anyone who’s not mentally ill, prefers a nice neighbourhood… if they can afford it).

    The point I was making – solidly referenced and backed by empirical data – was that if you’re going to fill a place with poor people, it’s better if they’re Mexican than if they’re White Trash (or black).

    It’s also better if they’re old; old, poor immigrants commit virtually no crime. Nobody’s arguing that the migrant intake should skew towards poor, old folks.

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