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Open the Borders, End the Housing Glut

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There are many examples of US-born citizens doing both. That is not an argument to forbid giving birth to children.

The only entity violating the rights of US citizens when people use "social" services is THE GOVERNMENT.

I don't find any reference I made to children in my posts.

As for the government, if there was no one asking for social services, or those that benefit from "giving" them, there wouldn't be any.

There are other opportunities where individuals are free to donate money, food, time, and other things to support individuals with various issues. And that is their right to do so. Income taxes and the like reduce that choice of individuals to make that decision for themselves.

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Immigration regulates itself. The amount of people who will come is roughly equal to the amount that the economy can absorb and pay wages those people are willing to work at. To imagine some fantastic scenario in which a billion people come in all at once and a ton of people cannot find work, is beyond belief.

Actually, to imagine some fantastic scenario in which the United States of America, under President Barack Obama, is a place that allows immigration to regulate itself, where people who are not employed would not in fact live in far greater comfort than most Africans or Asians, off of the work of those employed, is even more fantastic than your scenario (involving a billion people), which you also made up by the way.(I looked the topic over, and yes, you're making it up)

If you want to argue, argue with reality in mind, and stop making stuff up. No one is disputing the fact that in a laissez faire capitalist society open borders would work just fine. (Not to mention the fact that everything you are saying was already said a million times in other topics)

Edited by Jake_Ellison

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What she advocated for is laissez faire capitalism implemented gradually.

And your views, and the views of a few others with regards to this topic, are a step in the WRONG direction. We'll never get any closer to capitalism as long as people view immigration (and people from other cultures) the way some of you are.

Seriously, some of you need to read or reread Racism in VoS. My O'ist group just discussed it this past weekend so it's fresh on my mind. I think once you have read/reread it, then view what you said above, you'll see the flaw in your thinking.

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And your views, and the views of a few others with regards to this topic, are a step in the WRONG direction. We'll never get any closer to capitalism as long as people view immigration (and people from other cultures) the way some of you are.

Seriously, some of you need to read or reread Racism in VoS. My O'ist group just discussed it this past weekend so it's fresh on my mind. I think once you have read/reread it, then view what you said above, you'll see the flaw in your thinking.

This is getting annoying. I'll re-read all my posts, and correct myself if I made a mistake( although I seriously doubt it), but until then please, for the love of God, help me out and quote any racist comment I made.

And if you are responding to a quote of mine, talk to me. You are accusing me of racism, so it shouldn't be so hard to find a comment I made which is racist, would it? Just make sure you're not reading racism into a comment that is in fact not judging someone on their race.

[edit] Nop, nothing racist in my posts as far as I can see. My comment about how you can't find too many English speaking, educated etc. people in the Americas is obviously wrong, but that's nowhere near racist. This is a good opportunity though to change that to "some of the Americas", for the record.

Also, on a subject completely unrelated to racism, since I just noticed this in your post: I'd love to see a passage in Ayn Rand's work, where she speaks out against judging other cultures. (Or for that matter, people who are from other cultures, if that culture is a primitive one and they continue to cling to it.)

Edited by Jake_Ellison

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If you think you can crate political change through chanting "Open borders now!", go ahead, do that. Bang your head against the wall while you're at it.

You are going to continue getting negative replies until you acknowledge that, in principle, the borders should be open and free.

Once we establish that you agree with that principle, then we can show how you are straying from it by not advocating the immediate opening of the borders.

On the other hand, you may be taking the "well, it's right in principle, but not in practice" approach, in which case, that has also been dealt with in Objectivist literature.

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You are going to continue getting negative replies until you acknowledge that, in principle, the borders should be open and free.

Once we establish that you agree with that principle, then we can show how you are straying from it by not advocating the immediate opening of the borders.

I do agree with that principle, as I've stated several times. Let the showing of how I'm straying begin.

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You are going to continue getting negative replies until you acknowledge that, in principle, the borders should be open and free.
Agreed; but Jake did say this: "No one is disputing the fact that in a laissez faire capitalist society open borders would work just fine".

On the other hand, you may be taking the "well, it's right in principle, but not in practice" approach, in which case, that has also been dealt with in Objectivist literature.
The typical objections many rational Objectivists raise are not about practicality as such. Rather, they question the practicality of any change that is immediate and radical in immigration law without corresponding change in other laws, particularly, government-funded schools, medicaid, and such welfare.

The two other objections (of far less merit) are the "rule of law" objection and the "national security" objection.

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I'd like to throw this article in the discussion. I got it from this livejournal which, unfortunately, is friends-only, but I have the authorization of the author to reproduce it. I think it is rather pertinent to the discussion. Hopefully it is a constructive contribution.

The Immigrant: American At Heart, Endangered By Law

by Andrew Ryan

14 January 2008

Nowadays, one needs only to to listen to the current batch of presidential hopefuls in order to ascertain what buzzwords are to play a key function in the presidential debates. While three years ago it was “marriage” that stood on the spotlight right next to “Iraq”, this year the constituency seems to have lost its apprehension concerning certain parts of the population being able to enjoy conjugal unions in order to look closely at the newcomer to the politicaly strawman circle: the buzzword “immigration”.

Readers will not be surprised to notice that every time a social or political topic is pounced upon by candidates and politicians, said issue seems to become omnipresent, hijacking most forms of communication and becoming part of everyday discourse. True to form, nowadays one hears casual conversation concerning the status of illegal immigration, reactions vary from the calm and collected (the rare) to the loud and zealous (the more common), on one side some advocate amnesty for immigrants who have been in the country illegally for some time, while others hold that the panacea politicians are reluctant to adopt is completely hermetic borders and the stop of all immigration.

And yet, with all the heated discussion about immigration there are two vital points that hardly anyone dares to discuss: One is the status of the immigration system itself, and the other is the precarious positions in which immigrants invariably finds themselves trying to follow the aforementioned system to the best of their ability.

The average person is as familiar with the intricacies of the US immigration and naturalization process as he is with the concepts behind the process of thermonuclear fusion. Both are highly specialized subjects that require a great deal of knowledge to navigate safely, both must follow a sequence of events and conditions in order to reach a desired conclusion , but unlike the immigration process, nuclear fusion is bound by the laws of logic and ultimately makes sense. An individual who wishes to immigrate into the United States will find himself in a position not unlike a tourist in a casino, where the odds are stacked against him by the house and his success is not so much dependent on his skill as on pure chance.

According to Immigration Attorney Shaun Shahmardian, the body of laws that make up the current system of immigration is a complicated and cumbersome mangrove thicket that owes its Gordian proportions to constant partisan squabbling. A hypothetical example has the members of Party A perceiving a lull in the workforce in certain areas of industry. Party A wishes to increase the number of worker visas in order to fill the perceived lack of talent. However, Party B, acting on partisan politics, wishes to block the initiative and imposes the following condition: In order for said bill to be passed in full, Party A must include a provision in which only foreign nationals are allowed to be hired if no possible American citizen is available for that job (in order to satisfy the Unions, who wish to have an almost forceful control over who is allowed to be hired). It is immaterial to Party B’s concerns whether the lull in the workforce is caused not by absence of people but absence of talent (i.e: there may be people who can do the job, but not people who can do the job well or on an outstanding level), their priorities are given to partisan squabbling and blocking, and their other political allegiances (without questioning whether or not said allegiances have the right to exert authority over the issue).

Faced with this scenario, Party A can capitulate and include the required amendment, or scrap their plan altogether. Then, in the future, when Party B comes up with an immigration reform or bill, Party A will move into the antagonist square and the dance will begin anew. This constant push and pull of political interests has resulted in new laws being passed that many times contradict or are in direct conflict with previous regulations, requiring deft consolidation and juggling in order to solve the conflict. The unfortunate result of this process of stacking legislation is a system so complex and cumbersome that it is a miracle that it does not entirely suffocate under its own weight.

The standard wait period of a U.S. citizen petitioning citizenship for their foreign child can now last up to eight years. A green card for a foreign national may take up to six years in processing. After obtaining a green card, the immigrant may be lucky to acquire his citizenship by the ninth cumulative year. If the odds fall in his favor.

Because of all the different hoops and scrutiny immigrants are faced with, it is no wonder that many who arrive here on a student visa (which in itself is an expensive thing to acquire), tourist visa, or some other method, end up becoming illegal immigrants after their visa period has expired and they have not been able to secure a way by which they could gain permanent residence. It is not because they are unwilling to work difficult labors, quite the contrary, many immigrants are willing to do arduous labor, but unfortunately it is the aforementioned partisan chess games that make it difficult for migrant workers to do certain jobs legally: Regulations place a limit on the areas in which the foreigner can work, limiting the immigrant to work only in the fields in which he has a certifiable degree, placing no relevance on talent, skill or experience that is extrinsic from his area of academic specialization. While an American citizen is not beholden to stay within these narrow confines and may work equally as an agricultural worker or a vice-president (provided someone wants to hire him for either job), immigrants cannot stray from a narrowly-defined limit, no matter how much an American employer may wish to hire them.

In his April 2, 2006 article, Harry Binswanger of Capitalism Magazine wrote: “To forcibly exclude those who seek peacefully to trade value for value with us is a violation of the rights of both parties to such a trade: the rights of the American seller or employer and the rights of the foreign buyer or employee. Thus, immigration quotas treat both Americans and foreigners as if they were criminals, as if the peaceful exchange of values to mutual benefit were an act of destruction.”

Binswager is referring to the government regulations that dictate who an American employer is allowed to hire. Shahmardian spoke of several cases in which desperate employers had called him, seeking advice. Very often employers will have foreign workers that they value highly and who they consider to be real assets in their business. The scene varies from construction work to retail or privately owned stores, but the story is always the same: Due to government immigration regulations, the business owner or employer is incapable of granting legal status to their workers in order to keep them in the country and under their employment. It is hard to believe that in a capitalist society an employer is not empowered to hire whomever he wishes to hire, but rather finds himself facing immigration quotas and union quotas -the unions claim that immigrant workers steal their jobs, while refusing to acknowledge the fact that in order to have something stolen from you, you must first posess it!

Shahmardian observed that the general belief that many employers resort to illegal immigrants for work in order to save money proves to be false in the majority of cases. He knows of an exhaustive list of employers who have illegal immigrants in their work forces and who spend copious amounts of money on their welfare- in one case, the worker’s wife fell ill with cancer and since neither she nor her husband could qualify for work medical insurance, the employer himself footed the bill for chemotherapy sessions and hospitalization. There are many cases like these, in which the employers will spend more than they’d normally have to because they value their employees and do not wish to see them go.

Binswager points out the core of the issue in his article: “If the fear is of non-working immigrants, why is the pending legislation aimed at employers of immigrants?”

One thing to keep in mind, adds Shahmardian, is that just like any population anywhere, there are corrupt and criminal immigrants, and there are good, honest and hardworking immigrants, no different from what one might find within the native composition of the country itself. Nevertheless, the current political climate is creating an ever-growing sense of xenophobia, to the point that some Americans would rather do away with immigration altogether.

It may seem shocking to hear anti-immigration rhetoric in a country that, more than any other country in the history of the modern world, has reaped great benefits from those who have sought a new life on its shores. Nevertheless the anti-immigration sentiment is strong and it is rooted in the conception that being an American and staying in America is not a right, but a privilege. But to be accurate, it is neither… as it currently stands, the status of citizenship is granted in accordance to two congenital factors: geographic location and the citizenship status of one’s parents. Later it can be acquired through heterosexual marriage (gays and lesbians are denied the rights to be sponsored by their partners, as their unions are not approved by the federal government) or through the daunting process of work visas and other similar processes.

Those who would claim that American citizenship should be birth-bound are, in fact, the ones who understand America the least. The ideology of this country was founded upon the rejection of monarchy, tyranny and oppression, discarding all notions that some mystical, authoritarian element was carried over through bloodlines and down family lineage. It sought, instead, to uphold the ideal of achievement, that those who were willing to work, diligent, honest and with integrity, would someday reap the fruits of their labor, and be free of all oppression, to seek ultimate contentment and fulfillment within the goals they have established. This is known as the pursuit of happiness.

It is under this principle that immigrants such as Alexander Hamilton, Alexander Graham Bell, Andrew Carnegie, Albert Einstein, Ayn Rand , Igor Sikorsky, Arthur Rubinstein, Bob Hope, An Wang, and many others, forged their paths and enriched America as a country for having had them. Isn’t citizenship, then, best given to those who strive to live by the principles and ideology of this land, entering into an ideological commitment that is reflected in a lifestyle of achievement and freedom, rather than just reserve this status for a new breed of genetic aristocracy, who will not necessarily work towards preserving these ideals?

“Because our government is reactionary,” says Shahmardian, “we usually wait until the issue becomes a problem to do something about it.” Instead of creating a comprehensive and fair immigration system in lieu of the current Rube Goldberg-esque machine, the government merely tacks on new reforms, adding a new floor to the Tower of Babel. It is too early to predict who will sit on the presidential chair by next November, but one thing is certain: if he (or she) conveniently forgets the buzzword of ‘immigration’ once power is within grasp, or simply contents themselves to continue adding floors to the INS madhouse, a lot of deserving Americans will never get to call this country theirs, and that is perhaps one of the saddest tragedies, and one that the majority of the soundbite-tossing world of politics will not even notice.

Edited by kainscalia

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The typical objections many rational Objectivists raise are not about practicality as such. Rather, they question the practicality of any change that is immediate and radical in immigration law without corresponding change in other laws, particularly, government-funded schools, medicaid, and such welfare.

The two other objections (of far less merit) are the "rule of law" objection and the "national security" objection.

I only agree with the first objection, and even with that only to some extent: I believe that if the number of people allowed into the country/year, is increased gradually, until it's high enough that it no longer constitutes a limit, we will have a positive overall effect: the other laws you mentioned will not even have to change too much (and they are pretty unlikely to change), since the newcomers will start contributing as well. (If everything goes well. If not, this country is going bankrupt at the first serious hickup anyway.)

So I don't only advocate open borders in a capitalist economy, I want them in a mixed one as well(as we are likely to have for a long time), but I'd like them introduced gradually. (for reasons that keep being mentioned, and ignored)

In fact I hope we will see a start to exactly what I described, in the final Obama years.

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Agreed; but Jake did say this: "No one is disputing the fact that in a laissez faire capitalist society open borders would work just fine".

Saying that it will "work just fine" is different than a principled statement.

The typical objections many rational Objectivists raise are not about practicality as such. Rather, they question the practicality of any change that is immediate and radical in immigration law without corresponding change in other laws, particularly, government-funded schools, medicaid, and such welfare.

The argument from someone who adopts this position sums up to: "Because rights violations are occuring in the United States, we should throw everything into the wind and violate more rights (until things improve)".

This attitude is not really justifiable, since the two issues are seperate. I say come on in and don't pay taxes if you can get away with it while taking advantage of as many social services as possible. If it was up to me, I wouldn't be paying taxes either. As a legal citizen, I've taken advantage of as many social services as possible when I have had the opportunity. The problem is not that immigrants (or anybody else) are taking advantage of social services, the problem is that we have social services for people to take advantage of to begin with. The two issues are distinct, and should not be conflated.

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Only high quality immigrants should be allowed.

That said, I do think it is perfectly justified for the US Government to favor certain regions over others...

hat's a better criteria for selecting those N people out of 5*N applicants? Nicely distributed according to creed and ethnicity, to include N/5 Indians, N/5 Muslims, N/5 Europeans etc. or some objective criteria such as how well they speak English, understand basic economic concepts, have a history of employment, education etc.?

If it's the second, then guess what: there's no point in looking for such applicants in Afghanistan, Bangladesh or even the Americas. You're gonna find them mostly in Europe, parts of India and China etc.

However, there are many examples where they are using the socialized systems of the government (reducing the freedom of men) and committing violent crimes (individual opportunities against the freedom of men).

All of these are examples. Rather than judging individuals, you are judging groups based on race, ethnicity, geographical regions, etc. Since you seem to be refusing to look for yourself, I quote Rand from her essay Racism which can be found in VoS:

Just as there is no such thing as a collective or racial mind, so there is no such thing as a collective or racial achievement. There are only individual minds and individual achievements -- and a culture is not the anonymous product of undifferentiated masses, but the sum of the intellectual achievements of individual men.

A genius is a genius, regardless of the number of morons who belong to the same race -- and a moron is a moron, regardless of the number of geniuses who share his racial origin.

There is only one antidote to racism: the philosophy of individualism and its politico-economic corollary, laissez-faire capitalism.

Individualism regards man -- every man -- as an independent, sovereign entity who possesses an inalienable right to his own life, a right derived from his nature as a rational being. Individualism holds that a civilized society, or any form of association, cooperation or peaceful co-existence among men, can be achieved only on the basis of the recognition of individual rights -- and that a group, as such, has no rights other than the individual rights of its members.

I could go on, but I feel that's sufficient.

The US system rewards illegal immigration with many benefits. Much more than some host countries.

The US system rewards all types of looters and moochers, most of them home-grown, so what is your point? I knew many hard-working, illegal immigrant families when I lived in Houston and most of them payed federal income taxes, sales taxes, property taxes and all sorts of other taxes (toll roads and the rest of the crap you can't get out of due to the simple fact that you are living here.) There are many misconceptions about illegal immigration in this country and I think many of you are falling for it.

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Saying that it will "work just fine" is different than a principled statement.

The argument from someone who adopts this position sums up to: "Because rights violations are occuring in the United States, we should throw everything into the wind and violate more rights (until things improve)".

This attitude is not really justifiable, since the two issues are seperate. I say come on in and don't pay taxes if you can get away with it while taking advantage of as many social services as possible. If it was up to me, I wouldn't be paying taxes either. As a legal citizen, I've taken advantage of as many social services as possible when I have had the opportunity. The problem is not that immigrants (or anybody else) are taking advantage of social services, the problem is that we have social services for people to take advantage of to begin with. The two issues are distinct, and should not be conflated.

This talk reminds me of something written recently by a guy who got called a troll and moderated, so I am not certain why no one has called you on this.

You say that you would like to invite in millions of people to take advantage of our welfare system because it shouldn't be there in the first place. I assume that is because you believe that by living in a parasitic way(that you act proud of because god knows why) and encouraging others to do the same, that you will speed up the collapse of the system, after which people will come to their senses and realize that capitalism is a much better prospect. At least that is what I hope you think.

What you ignore in that train of thought, is that you are inviting in and encouraging parasites to take advantage of a democracy. That is to say, people who will in all likelihood vote for the people who provide them with the most of my money. When I run out, as I and all the other actual producers certainly will, there will be no call for a return to classical liberalism but rather a surge toward more controls and more theft.

Observe the amount of blame that the "free market" is getting for the difficulties we face today. Or the fact that we rushed arms, wide open into the loving embrace of the most socialist man to seek the office of president.

Or better yet, consider the historical facts of the last hundred years.

Banks fail in the early 1900's :. create a banking cartel with government regulation called the federal reserve.

Cheap fed money causes a market collapse in 1929 :. create a massive entitlement program.

Artificially set gold prices get taken advantage of in the 60's :. remove the redeemability of gold altogether.

Interest rates and stagflation go haywire in the 70's :. we institute price controls and rationing of gas.

Economic instability is a virtual guarantee of increased socialism and many more decades of poverty. What the "racists" above are taking into consideration is a certain level of social metaphysics which seems to escape you. That the socialism of our government is going to attract a certain kind of person. This isn't the old days of the land of opportunity where people would sink or swim by their own merits. We are not attracting people escaping difficult political circumstances. We are attracting economic opportunists of the worst kind who will fundementally alter the culturural backdrop of this country for the worse. And of course, I'm not talking about polka music and tacos. I am talking about rampant ID Theft and welfare fraud. A culture which has maintained a cleptocracy for more then 50 years. A different sort of person with a different sense of economic entitlement who will vote for even more of what they came for in the first place. We are not getting the best of what Mexico has to offer.

Look at it this way. If I were to open a bar and advertise that my drinks cost double what all the other bars cost unless you are homeless, then they're free, what sort of clientele might I expect? The people that can afford my overpriced drinks are not going to want to be there and the Wino's are going to come in droves. No other outcome can reasonable be expected.

No one above is racist. They just realize that the actuality of what you advocate is disastrous. It would be like deciding that tomorrow, all social security checks would cease and the government would stop maintaining the roads. Millions of old people starving and potholes the size of the grand canyon are not going to lead us to a capitalist paradise. There is an order in which things must be done and to ignore that fact comes across as rationalistic and naive.

I generally don't make personal recommendations to people I don't know personally, but seriously, stop taking advantage of government programs. Cheat on your taxes if you want and think you can get away with it, but don't do the free money thing. Just don't man. That shit'll rot your soul. It will ruin your connection with reality and your relationships with people. No good will come of it. If your life isn't your own it's not worth living. No amount of free money is worth the nagging bit of knowledge that nothing you have or achieve is rightfully yours; That you could not have gotten it without someone else's effort propping you up. Just don't.

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All of these are examples. Rather than judging individuals, you are judging groups based on race, ethnicity, geographical regions, etc. Since you seem to be refusing to look for yourself, I quote Rand from her essay Racism which can be found in VoS:

I specifically asked you to point out examples of where I was being racist, but oh well. I will ask a moderator whether your post can stand first, rather than derail the discussion over your nonsense, and I'll give my opinion on you and your intelligence only then.

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Only high quality immigrants should be allowed.

Check your premise there. The only potential immigrants that would not be allowed in, would be the following: (from an article written by Harry Binswanger which can be read here)

Entry into the U.S. should ultimately be free for any foreigner, with the exception of criminals, would-be terrorists, and those carrying infectious diseases.

An end to immigration quotas is demanded by the principle of individual rights. Every individual has rights as an individual, not as a member of this or that nation. One has rights not by virtue of being an American, but by virtue of being human.

And certainly not by virtue of the various qualities that you've listed.

That is a very good article by Binswanger about phasing-in open immigration, but also there is a more detailed one here written by Craig Biddle, where he addresses the arguments used by those opposing open immigration.

In primitive, practical terms -- just to be wildly unPC and offend everyone :P -- this means far fewer blacks, hispanics, and Muslims, and far more whites, orientals, and Jews! :P

Why'd you even make such a comment while at the same time explicitly stating the very reason for doing it was "just to be wildly unPC and offend everyone"? That's being openly disrespectful.

Edited by intellectualammo

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Mod's note: Folks, please, when choosing a tone to reply, don't just look at the single post you are replying to. Please, also consider whether the person to whom you are replying has generally been a thoughtful, apparently honest poster, or a habitual jerk. *** END ***

I specifically asked you to point out examples of where I was being racist, but oh well. I will ask a moderator whether your post can stand first, rather than derail the discussion over your nonsense, and I'll give my opinion on you and your intelligence only then.
I assume the reference was to your saying the following:
That said, I do think it is perfectly justified for the US Government to favor certain regions over others...
Saying that does not make you racist, but -- on its own -- it is a racist statement: i.e. it advocates using group-membership as a criteria for judging individuals. From this, a reader might extrapolate the following example: since there are more black programmers than white ones, I'm only interviewing white ones. Some people try to make the case that this is "efficient", but that does not mean it is not racist -- it is using race-membership as a significant element in judging an individual person. That is the essence of racist ideology.

If you've been quoted out of context, that wasn't my intent. I just wanted to highlight the sentence that is the root of it all (as far as you're concerned).

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I'd rather see government hand-holding programs like welfare and social assistance eliminated before something like open immigration was considered.

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I'd rather see government hand-holding programs like welfare and social assistance eliminated before something like open immigration was considered.

Agreed. I believe that those programs are what attract unproductive illegal immigrants. It is the result of the program.

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Wow, some racism here.

Immigration regulates itself. The amount of people who will come is roughly equal to the amount that the economy can absorb and pay wages those people are willing to work at. To imagine some fantastic scenario in which a billion people come in all at once and a ton of people cannot find work, is beyond belief.

In addition, even giving in to the fantastic notion that this would happen, no one's rights are violated. If you cannot find a consistent, sustainable job, pick up your crap and go somewhere you can. If a bunch of immigrants cannot find jobs then they will leave or go jobless; I do not see the problem with that.

The government's job is to ensure no one's rights are violated. Thus, in immigration, its only job is supposed to make sure no one coming in has violent intentions on its citizens, or carries some disease that would harm other people, etc. To claim that its a legitimate station function to disallow certain people from immigrating due to the color of their skin (!!!) is morally reprehensible. This forum is for discussing Objectivism, not advocating racist ideology.

So, given your second statement, you are saying that current US immigration is regulating itself?

Next, a sustainable job can be replaced by welfare in their joblessness. Looters, period.

As for the government's jobe to ensure that no one's rights are violated. Sure, and the basis of that would be what you said, then that those individuals and their families were producers. That's not racist. A nation may have a huge group of unskilled people in their nation with poor social programs, as a result of their social programs and a lack of production. Don't allow looters in. Again, that is a problem with the ideology of a transition nation going from productivity to socialism. It is the path of least resistance for near by poor socialist countries. It helps those countries too and pulls the world economy down.

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Saying that does not make you racist, but -- on its own -- it is a racist statement: i.e. it advocates using group-membership as a criteria for judging individuals.

For the most part I didn't really call for judging individuals at all, I just have a problem with our current way of selecting immigrant who receive visas: quotas are being filled, to insure racial and cultural(code for religious) diversity. I know you would agree that's actually the racist way of doing things, and since I did make my point clear in this very topic, calling me a racist qualifies as a knee-jerk reaction by people who care about appearance more than substance.

However, I must also disagree with you saying that using "group-membership" as one criteria to judge someone is necessarily racism. I'm sure there isn't even a need to come up with examples for groups who's members are worthy of being despised.

In fact even one's geographic location can be one of many good criteria, if the selection process has to be superficial or heavy-handed (for ex. selecting several million applicants a year has to be). Setting up consulates and interviews with tens of thousands of people in the areas I mentioned can be problematic, expensive and even dangerous, and in my judgment simply not worth the effort, given the fact that very few individuals will come out as qualified anyway.

So again, I'm sorry if this was misinterpreted by people who didn't bother paying attention to my posts, but I stand by my opinion: setting up interviews with every applicant in Damascus, Bogotá or Karachi, just to make sure we don't discriminate against those few individuals who would qualify to receive a visa is not something the American government owes those people, and it is in general a stupid thing to do. (if you pay attention to the news, you know that those very consulates are constantly attacked, and cost taxpayers more money than a dozen others in Europe for instance)

On a personal note, I despise people who throw racism in someone's face when they don't fully understand or agree with the argument. These people are just as despicable and irrational as the racists themselves.

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You say that you would like to invite in millions of people to take advantage of our welfare system because it shouldn't be there in the first place. I assume that is because you believe that by living in a parasitic way(that you act proud of because god knows why) and encouraging others to do the same, that you will speed up the collapse of the system, after which people will come to their senses and realize that capitalism is a much better prospect. At least that is what I hope you think.

I don't think people will come to their senses unless there is an intellectual revolution, which I work hard every day to make a reality (in the small ways that I can). I wouldn't be so foolish as to think a self-imposed collapse would suddenly make capitalism seem legit.

It's more that these services are there, so why not use as much of them as possible? As Friedman wrote somewhere (paraphrasing), if it's public, that means it's really just unowned. Of course I'm going to get a government guaranteed student loan. Of course my mortgage was probably made possible by Fannie and Freddie. Of course I'm going to use the roads and walk my dog in the local park. If I didn't use any government-funded projects, then I would have to just roll over and die. Everywhere I turn there is government involvement in my life. To live while not accepting government-funded help is really not possible.

What you ignore in that train of thought, is that you are inviting in and encouraging parasites to take advantage of a democracy. That is to say, people who will in all likelihood vote for the people who provide them with the most of my money.

Not necessarily. It depends on the person. I sure didn't, anyway.

We are not attracting people escaping difficult political circumstances. We are attracting economic opportunists of the worst kind who will fundementally alter the culturural backdrop of this country for the worse.

This is simply not true. As evidence, I would introduce you to my wife, if I could. Her family moved here after they encountered a tremendous amount of difficulty in running their small business in Rio during the '90's. They came to escape political circumstances (increase in economic populism that is still going on in Latin America), as well as the plague of crime that rots Brazil's cities.

We are not getting the best of what Mexico has to offer.

Actually, we are. I would urge you to go to your local day-laborer site and talk to some of these guys. I have. I've employeed illegals many times, and have always been satisfied with the end result. Do you know how much money it is to come here from Mexico, or any other country? As a generality, only the top classes are able to come. I have a friend who crossed the border illegally, and it cost him 10 grand to get put in the back of a truck. That's not cheap (especially if you live in Mexico).

It would be like deciding that tomorrow, all social security checks would cease and the government would stop maintaining the roads.

It's not the same. Social security funds have already been unjustly stolen from people. We are talking about people who are coming here for the first time, and have not been a part of any social system. The social security example is akin to denying a right to something which I have already paid for, while the immigration example is a denial of something much more fundamental, my physical freedom.

I generally don't make personal recommendations to people I don't know personally, but seriously, stop taking advantage of government programs. Cheat on your taxes if you want and think you can get away with it, but don't do the free money thing. Just don't man. That shit'll rot your soul. It will ruin your connection with reality and your relationships with people. No good will come of it. If your life isn't your own it's not worth living. No amount of free money is worth the nagging bit of knowledge that nothing you have or achieve is rightfully yours; That you could not have gotten it without someone else's effort propping you up. Just don't.

Just to clarify: I have never received or applied for direct transfer payments under any social programs. When I operated a business in Southeast DC, it was extremely hard for me to find enough employees keep up with customer demand. I hired anyone who walked through the door, because I always needed people desperately. I would have guys start, and then I would catch them stealing from me, and I would have to fire them the next day. Sometimes, a driver would start, take his first delivery, collect the cash from the customer, and never come back to pay the owed money to the store. Then the next week he would come in and ask for his paycheck (legally, you are supposed to give it to them, but I never did. One guy got upset that I wouldn't and smashed the windshield of my car). Anyway, this is mostly beside the point. The story is that I had this really good driver who worked full time (35-40 hours). He always showed up every day on time and was the most reliable guy I had working for me. He added a tremendous amount of value to my business. Unfortunately, the man was a sack of shit. He had gotten laid off from his other job, and he wanted to collect unemployment benefits, despite the fact that he still worked for me. So, on a few occassions, he would bring me papers, and I would write that he made less than he did. (Tips don't have to be reported, so this is easy to do in the pizza business.) Man would continue to get his unemployment benefits and continue showing up to work on time and giving me 90%, and my business would run smoothly. I signed his papers because I liked the guy, and he was a good employee; plus I knew that the chances were that if I didn't sign them he would just go work for one of my competitors, and they would sign it.

So, to make it clear: I have not personally received any benefits. But one could say that I've used them to subsidize the pay of an employee of mine. So, that's how I've taken advantage of them. Now you guys can tell me how wrong I was and how stupid I am.

Edited by adrock3215

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"Free" immigration isn't properly or legally allowed for private homes, businesses, country clubs, or gated communities, So why should it be for whole countries? Don't the people who freely, voluntarily cooperate to create and maintain a country -- i.e. the owners and financiers -- have a right to control who enters?

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"Free" immigration isn't properly or legally allowed for private homes, businesses, country clubs, or gated communities
It certainly is. If you want to buy a private dwelling and you can persuade the owner to sell it to you, you are allowed to buy the property. That's what "private ownership" means. Unlike a socialist country where an individual does not own property, he only uses it by permission of the state, we allow any individual to buy and sell property.
So why should it be for whole countries?
Nobody owns the whole country. The government does not own the country, in fact the government properly owns only a very tiny amount of property -- just that which is required for the functioning of government. My property is not owned by society, it is owned by me. That means that "society" does not have a right to restrict my use of my property, and cannot rightly restrict my disposing of my property as I see fit. Rights are moral concepts that individuals have; society does not have any rights to my property, or the property of any other individual.

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It certainly is. If you want to buy a private dwelling and you can persuade the owner to sell it to you, you are allowed to buy the property. That's what "private ownership" means. Unlike a socialist country where an individual does not own property, he only uses it by permission of the state, we allow any individual to buy and sell property.

Nobody owns the whole country. The government does not own the country, in fact the government properly owns only a very tiny amount of property -- just that which is required for the functioning of government. My property is not owned by society, it is owned by me. That means that "society" does not have a right to restrict my use of my property, and cannot rightly restrict my disposing of my property as I see fit. Rights are moral concepts that individuals have; society does not have any rights to my property, or the property of any other individual.

Interesting points.

Can any individual buy and sell property in the United States? Well, in Wisconsin, there is a minimum mark up law on gasoline. So, it can't even be sold legally below specific prices. Then there are gouging laws also. Then there are the taxes on the sale of goods.

Now, we're moving toward another topic, but the government isn't a singular entity that gets power from some mystic, it is from the citizens. Supposed to be for our freedom, but it now continues to infringe upon it in the name of the broad area of "public good".

Society does not have any rights to your property? Sure, but your work is your property. The money you pay in tax, that's what is taken away from you.

Fuel taxes I can at least recognize as a fee for maintaining and building roads. If you're a bigger vehicle, you're gonna use more fuel. So, more load. Or if you just use the roads more in a lighter vehicle that uses less fuel, hey, you're paying for the amount of road that you "use". Put that money from roads into public transit, then it starts to become "public good" again.

I still don't see where open borders are going to lead to an end in the housing glut. I think the glut is partially caused by housing prices being inflated. Next, bad loans. Bad banks and bad borrowers should suffer. It's the few ways where a profitable economic system works on itself.

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I specifically asked you to point out examples of where I was being racist, but oh well. I will ask a moderator whether your post can stand first, rather than derail the discussion over your nonsense, and I'll give my opinion on you and your intelligence only then.

I quoted you twice in my last post.

EDIT: For whatever it's worth, I'm not sure why Jake is choosing to be such an ass towards me or threatening me. (Not that I can even find anything in my posts worthy of moderator attention.) :lol: I have not insulted anyone or called them names. I simply think that some of you are mistaken in your thinking on this particular issue. When I was a conservative Republican a few years back, living in Houston, I held many of the same beliefs as some of you. Since learning about Objectivism; however, I have read and learned more about the subjects of immigration and racism/tribalism and realized that I was wrong. I am simply trying to get some of you to reevaluate your thoughts. Jeez.

Edited by K-Mac

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