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Immigration Law in Arizona

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TheEgoist
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Gives up his right to what? There's no inalienable right to violate the rights of others. There's only the inalienable right to life, liberty, property, etc.

There's no right to be free of retaliation from others for violating their rights, no right to violate the rights of others, but demand that they not retaliate.

Inalienable means that man's rights are due to his nature. His rights are not gifts from God or society.

your stance on that was cleared up for me with your use of the term "violation."

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If rights are things which cannot rightfully be taken away, but they can be given up or rightfully violated in carrying out justice, then it seems that they have little in the way of inviolability to me.

Rights cannot be "rightfully violated" in carrying out justice. If rights are violated in the process of carrying out justice, the victim should seek redress, rightfully so.

So if we take it as a given that immigrants have a right to cross the border at will, is the government morally justified in violating their rights if they have reason to believe that there are pose a security risks inherent in their so doing?

Being a foreigner is not a crime. A person has the right to immigrate, not to violate rights. I wouldn't phrase it as a "right to cross the border at will."

Acting to protect rights though, does end in accidental violations of rights, which are then morally justified.

I am not certain what you mean by an "accidental violation of rights."

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Have you expanding on your view somewhere here, in one of the threads?

Is it your view that you can initiate force against someone else, yet when they defend themselves with force, they are violating your rights? If so, how is that not a denial of their right of self-defense, of their own right to life?

That is emphatically NOT my view at all. Hotu Motua and myself went 16 rounds over inalienable rights a month or so back. I don't want to repeat the course of that thread here. I hold that "inalienable yet forfeitable rights" don't make sense, and that self-defense is directly rooted in the ethical principle of egoism, so is rather unlike other rights in that it applies outside a social context and is hierarchically prior to other rights. I have gained important and relevant insights into the problems posed by so-called broken units and the existence of two definitions for normative concepts in philosophy from Peikoff's "Unity in Ethics and Epistemology", but I haven't written them up yet. If you ask for more I'll answer ... in a month or two.
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Gives up his right to what? There's no inalienable right to violate the rights of others. There's only the inalienable right to life, liberty, property, etc.

There's no right to be free of retaliation from others for violating their rights, no right to violate the rights of others, but demand that they not retaliate.

Inalienable means that man's rights are due to his nature. His rights are not gifts from God or society.

Unalienable, not inalienable.

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Unalienable, not inalienable.

According to these guys and the pictures of the original documents the word went back and forth several times. No strong case can be made either way that one word was preferable to the other at that time by those writers. Ayn Rand always used inalienable, which differs from the final version of the Declaration. I figure she had a reason. The difference is that unalienable rights are intrinsic in the manner of attributes or absolute as granted by God, while inalienable rights do not have that whiff about them.

Definition of inalienable - 1. incapable of being repudiated or transferred to another; "endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights" 2. not subject to forfeiture; "an unforfeitable right"

This is typical of Freedictionary.com, the legal dictionary at FreeDictionary.com, Merrian-Webster.com, yourdictionary.com, Wikianswers.com.

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I'm sorry for the confusion. Let me try to clarify my views and arguments in some...

I recognize that illegal immigrants may cause cost or harm to citizens, but only when they violate your rights (like when they steel your SS# and mess up your tax returns). There are already laws against such things. But bankrupting your state economy through welfare spending is not a violation of your rights on behalf of the immigrant, but rather a violation on behalf of your government. I'd really like to get more into the visibility part some more, but I've got to work now.

Even in cases like this where the law is immoral, breaking it puts the lawbreaker into opposition with the rest of that society. They become your enemy and you theirs. This is what I see as the primary justification for obeying the rule of law while it is tolerable.

Not quite. It puts the lawbreaker in opposition to the apparatus of force in a society. But I think I see your point. However, if it is indeed your primary point, my criticism is this: The reason to obey the law in your principle ultimately boils down to "when it is tolerable" which amounts to no principle at all - it requires the sort of pragmatic gymnastics required of emergency situations - "Should I give the mugger my money, run away, fight him, stall him until help arrives, etc.". It cannot be used as a guide to action under normal situations. Force is in play.

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Not quite. It puts the lawbreaker in opposition to the apparatus of force in a society. But I think I see your point. However, if it is indeed your primary point, my criticism is this: The reason to obey the law in your principle ultimately boils down to "when it is tolerable" which amounts to no principle at all -

That's a good criticism, but to explain more precisely, I believe Rand's standard for dictatorship is the point at which it is no longer tolerable. The openness that I would allow for though, is that that point may become apparent to different people at different points in time. In Germany in 1939, blond haired Germans might believe it to not be sufficiently bad to warrant attacks on the state whereas a German Jew might think otherwise. There is an objective point where it is true for everyone, but since it is such a broad abstraction, integrating the essential concretes is going to take differing amounts of time depending on the person and circumstance.

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The point at which the different producers shrug in Atlas is another good example.

If I recall correctly, the defining characteristic of totalitarian statism (or dictatorship) is censorship. We already suffer the political censorship of McCain-Feingold. So, again I need help finding an objective point at which we live in a dictatorship - specifically, how much freedom of speech must we be denied? But that's something that can be discussed another time, I think. More importantly, it seems you're implying that the point at which it is moral to break unjust laws and the point at which it is moral to make war on the government are one and the same. If that is what you're saying, I disagree.

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You're kidding, right? You're saying that because killing another person is metaphysically impossible outside of a social context, that is why it is denied to you in a social context?

No, I'm not kidding. And no, I'm not saying that. I am not saying killing is wrong because it is impossible to do outside a social context - that would be the absurd non-sequitur you are railing against. I am saying that since it is something you cannot do outside a social context the fact that you are forbidden from doing it in a (proper) social context is not a reduction of your freedom. You did not lose the right to do something by entering the social context.

Read carefully before flying off into a rant.

And actually, identity theft is theft from the person whose identity is being used.

What property of yours is taken without consent when someone uses your name and identification numbers? None. Theft is the taking of another's property without consent. Identity "theft" does not fit the definition of theft.

Edited by mrocktor
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The point at which the different producers shrug in Atlas is another good example.

If I recall correctly, the defining characteristic of totalitarian statism (or dictatorship) is censorship. We already suffer the political censorship of McCain-Feingold. So, again I need help finding an objective point at which we live in a dictatorship - specifically, how much freedom of speech must we be denied? But that's something that can be discussed another time, I think. More importantly, it seems you're implying that the point at which it is moral to break unjust laws and the point at which it is moral to make war on the government are one and the same. If that is what you're saying, I disagree.

This is from her playboy interview,

A dictatorship has four characteristics: one-party rule, executions without trial for political offenses, expropriation or nationalization of private property, and censorship. Above all, this last. So long as men can speak and write freely, so long as there is no censorship, they still have a chance to reform their society or to put it on a better road. When censorship is imposed, that is the sign that men should go on strike intellectually, by which I mean, should not cooperate with the social system in any way whatever.

I think a strong argument could be made that our 2 party system where both parties press as close to the center as possible might qualify as one part in effect.

Executions w/o trial have not often occurred, so far as I know have not yet occurred.

Expropriation of private property was held as proper in Kilo.

Censorship seems partially true. McCain-feingold, like you mentioned, also government control of the airwaves are among the worst restrictions but there seem like enough alternative methods of free speech available, through the internet especially, that it may be premature to label our situation as being severely censured.

So 2.5/4 maybe? Also, even though censorship occurs, it is far more mild than the sort which make ideological retaliation impossible. China's(and Australia's, i think) internet censorship is much more the onerous revolution needing type.

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This is from her playboy interview,...
At least in this quote, she is talking about conditions of revolution: "not cooperat[ing] with the social system in any way whatever". I wonder if she has addressed the issue of obeying the law, in some other place.

A CD-search shows that "Cashing In: The Student Rebellion" has some discussion on civil-disobedience. (CtUI)

Edited by softwareNerd
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I wonder if she has addressed the issue of obeying the law, in some other place.

Me too. Civil disobedience doesn't seem to apply to the immigration question, because it isn't necessarily a form of protest. Thanks for reccomending that peice, by the way. I haven't cracked open CtUI in years. While re-reading Cashing In, I was struck by the incredible scope of ideas Rand covered in just one article and how they were focused on one particular event. I was also struck by the parrallels to the FSM and Obama's ascendancy. Bush and his compassionate conservativsm is much like President Kerner trying to be all things to all people; both were chosen as targets by the left specifically because of their willingness to compromise. Obama's empty hope/change campaign mirrors the student's declarations that they had no ideology, but that they desparately needed to act. Then there are the people who were suckered into Obama's campaign only to become dissatisfied with him when they found out what his change meant - they mirror the conservative students who joined early and became dissatisfied when consequences like the "Filthy Language Movement" became apparant. But this thread isn't really about all that, so...

So 2.5/4 maybe? Also, even though censorship occurs, it is far more mild than the sort which make ideological retaliation impossible. China's(and Australia's, i think) internet censorship is much more the onerous revolution needing type.

That may be an interesting discussion, but I kind of regret bringing it up in this thread - I think its a red herring. What I really wanted to know is if you think the point at which civil disobedience/warring on the government are the one and the same. By innocent lawbreaking, I mean lawbreaking that violates nobody's rights. Rand seems to draw the line at just before and just after a dictatorship is formed, and I agree.

At this point, I think "visible lawbreaking" can probably be lumped safely in the category of civil disobedience for the purposes of this discussion- and I don't necessarily view illegal immigration as civil disobedience. I think the time may be ready for it, though. If Arizona had instead passed a law saying they were going to enforce some arcane prohibition on oral sex, I'd think that everyone here would vocally condemn the law. Some people may even organize a community blojob night. The immigration question is only confused because, properly, the government does screen immigrants. Well, the government has effectively abbrogated that responsibility and instead instituted a corrupt system of that violates the rights of foreigners and Americans.

Edited by FeatherFall
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No, I'm not kidding. And no, I'm not saying that. I am not saying killing is wrong because it is impossible to do outside a social context - that would be the absurd non-sequitur you are railing against. I am saying that since it is something you cannot do outside a social context the fact that you are forbidden from doing it in a (proper) social context is not a reduction of your freedom. You did not lose the right to do something by entering the social context.

Read carefully before flying off into a rant.

I read carefully.

But, okay, since other human beings don't exist outside the "S.C." and you object because specifically shooting another human being is metaphysically impossible, why don't we say that outside the SC you have the option of shooting anything you feel like shooting, but inside the SC, you have to first determine if that thing is, or belongs to, a human being. Therefore, your options have been diminished due to the sudden existence of entities called "others." I notice you don't address the burning down of the house and trees, which I provided as a clearer example against your premise.

What property of yours is taken without consent when someone uses your name and identification numbers? None. Theft is the taking of another's property without consent. Identity "theft" does not fit the definition of theft.

Your identity belongs to you. Your reputation belongs to you. The fruits of your efforts, of your life, of your mind belong to you. The value that others would trade in exchange for the established value of your capabilities, integrity, etc., belongs to you. When someone uses your identity and reputation to gain value, that value properly belongs to you, not to them, so they are stealing from you. As surely as if they copied the words of a novel or song written by you, and sold them as their own.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Have fun with this one:

CNS: "Obama State Dept. Tells Communist China: AZ Immigration Law Is Indication of 'Troubling Trend' of 'Discrimination' in U.S."

http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/66191

Note, Secretary Poser is the founder and president of this group, "Human Rights First."

http://www.humanrightsfirst.org/index.aspx

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_Rights_First

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  • 1 month later...

Hello!

This is my first post - I am trying to find out what the consistent Objectivist position is on immigration.

Note that I am not an Objectivist, rather I’d describe myself as an atheist conservative. My personal opinion is that immigration should be restricted for a plethora of different reasons, but that is irrelevant to my question. I want to find out the Objectivist opinion.

So far, I believe the view of Leonard Peikoff on immigration is just plain inconsistent with Objectivism. His view is summarised in his latest pod cast available to listen here:

http://media.blubrry.com/peikoff/www.peikoff.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/2010-7-5.119_B_01.L.mp3

In my opinion his view to support Arizona’s law is a pragmatist’s solution rather than an Objectivist’s solution. I think the Objectivist solution is to support open immigration even in the context of a welfare state. Although this would mean immigrants would move to rich countries in order to obtain welfare benefits, I don’t think this is a problem in the Objectivist view, since this simply hastens the collapse of the welfare system. Essentially, I believe the viewpoint described in the following two pages is the correct and consistent Objectivist viewpoint:

http://www.hblist.com/immigr.htm

and

http://www.capitalismmagazine.com/index.php?news=5138

Do you think Peikoff is wrong? If not, how do you reconcile his views with the views of Craig Biddle and Harry Binswanger above which both address the situation in the context of the welfare state?

Many thanks in advance for your replies.

Ryan

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<mod note>I merged this with an existing topic. There are many other immigration topics as well, e.g. this one. Use search. </mod note>

I want to find out the Objectivist opinion.
As a philosophy, Objectivism recommends Capitalism. One can ask an Objectivist: "How would you act under a mixed economy like the one in country X"?, but is you ask this of the philosophy itself, the philosophical reply is: "Let them go Capitalist". In other words, Objectivists who agree on the same end can disagree on how to act under a mixed-economy. So, you are not going to find Objectivism's theoretically accurate answer to living in a mixed-economy. Take a different example: suppose one asks: "Should business XYZ be allowed to charge any price, even though it is a government imposed monopoly, and even though that will not change any time soon?" Objectivism would say that the government should not impose a monopoly, so you're switching the context too much.

As for the particular issue, this topic has quite an extensive discussion.

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Do you think Peikoff is wrong? If not, how do you reconcile his views with the views of Craig Biddle and Harry Binswanger above which both address the situation in the context of the welfare state?
The contexts that are assumed are not comparable, and therefore the conclusions are (necessarily different). Biddle assumes the hypothetical context where substantial (and frankly unrealistic) changes in our political and legal system are made:

What
should
we do about the problem of welfare with regard to immigrants? We should mercifully bar immigrants from any involvement in this legalized violation of rights.

Binswanger makes the same presupposition:

I support this kind of legislation (which should be enacted at the State level as well; currently left-leaning States, like California, continue to throw tax money at immigrants--and everyone else).

Peikoff's conclusion, on the other hand, is based on an entirely different context, namely "actual America" where the courts have ruled that we cannot withhold welfare-state entitlements to immigrants (e.g. Plyler v. Doe). There is no disagreement between the three in terms of principles, the disagreement is over what to do with the bad cards that have been dealt to Americans. I think there is probably a factual disagreement over the significance of illegal immigrants w.r.t. the law that hospital emergency must treat anyone regardless of ability to pay. The problem is, apparently, acute in California, but it is difficult to prove or disprove the contention that it is particularly due to illegal immigrants taking advantage of this aspect of the welfare state, since hospitals do not (and cannot) inquire into immigration status.

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On the Objectivist viewpoint, immigration is a weapon against the welfare state. In the same way that any liberalisation of controls is a threat against statism.

ie. If a welfare system can handle 1m people using it and an extra 1m users arrive in the country then the system will offer worse services. If a further 1m welfare users arrive then the system is worse still. The next 1m could cause the collapse of the system.

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ie. If a welfare system can handle 1m people using it and an extra 1m users arrive in the country then the system will offer worse services. If a further 1m welfare users arrive then the system is worse still. The next 1m could cause the collapse of the system.
Yes, now the question is whether we should advocate the collapse of our society. Personally, I am not looking forward to the destruction of America, even if it seems like the majority of society is bringing it on themselves. The problem is that the collapse would also rain on me, which would be a big problem.
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Yes, now the question is whether we should advocate the collapse of our society. Personally, I am not looking forward to the destruction of America, even if it seems like the majority of society is bringing it on themselves. The problem is that the collapse would also rain on me, which would be a big problem.

I think a society would thrive with open immigration; only the welfare system would collapse.

Edit: from an Objectivist perspective. I oppose open immigration for other unrelated reasons.

Edited by Ryan1985
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Yes, now the question is whether we should advocate the collapse of our society. Personally, I am not looking forward to the destruction of America, even if it seems like the majority of society is bringing it on themselves. The problem is that the collapse would also rain on me, which would be a big problem.

Also, if the collapse did rain on you (which I doubt it would), how would that justify violating the individuals rights of American employers and immigrant employees etc?

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I think a society would thrive with open immigration; only the welfare system would collapse.
I do not see how just one aspect of society would collapse. Hospitals would be reduced to third-world levels, being unable to stay afloat financially due to the massive free medical care they are required to provide. Any "collapse" of the welfare system would be a result of reality asserting itself -- with any luck, welfare statism would be abolished in response to the fact that it caused to collapse of society. Open immigration itself would not cause the collapse of just the welfare system.
I oppose open immigration for other unrelated reasons.
I can't say that I support or oppose it, in the current context. Basically I would support open immigration if the courts would decide that immigrants do not have a "right" to welfare-state entitlements. However, as you may recognize, this would be a legally implausible and philosophically dubious outcome, since it would install an unprecedented level of legal privilege to the fact of citizenship, and implies that it is legitimate to be the recipient of government theft but only if you are a citizen. The only philosophically and legally legitimate step would be to outlaw welfare benefit for everybody; and thus we're back to the premise that we should eliminate the welfare state. The question is, how do you justify violating my rights, by enabling more people to make demands on the "services" that my taxes pay for?
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I think a society would thrive with open immigration; only the welfare system would collapse.

I doubt it. I think a collapsing welfare state would rain on you regardless of the number of immigrants. Riots is roits, nomatter where the mob hails from.

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