Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Letter to Don Boudreaux

Mr. Boudreaux,

In your post “Amnesty Intranational,” you ask, “Why are poor Hispanics not accorded the same humane treatment for committing ‘crimes’ that are equally as victimless as are the drug-taking ‘crimes’ committed in the past by presidents, governors, celebrated artists, and, quite likely, several of your neighbors and co-workers?”

You equate deportation of foreign nationals to imprisonment of U.S. citizens for doing drugs.  However, unless these poor Hispanics are from North Korea, deportation back to the countries from where they came isn’t even remotely equivalent to a prison sentence.

You imply that anything less than full amnesty for foreign nationals illegally residing here isn’t “humane.” But amnesty entails, ultimately, citizenship.  It is not an inherently libertarian position to favor adding millions of new statists hailing from the Third World to the voter rolls. Fully 67% of Hispanics say they want a bigger government with more services (Washington Post/Kaiser poll).

Amnesty is, in substance, a Big Government program.  Democrats want to issue voter ID cards to millions of undocumented statists and then shower them with benefits.  The total cost of the Amnesty program to taxpayers could run as high as $6.3 trillion in the years ahead, according to the Heritage Foundation.  Even if the estimate is wildly inflated (I don’t think it is), any package-deal program that on net grows government spending even a little should be opposed by libertarians.

The Amnesty program isn’t libertarian in theory or in practice.  Supporting it because you think some aspects of it are good (e.g., helping poor Hispanics) is a compromise that results in a net loss of liberty.  It also hinders the long-term prospects for liberty going forward.

Low-IQ immigrants from Third World countries constitute a permanent and growing underclass of government dependents.  Racial IQ gaps have not narrowed in decades.  Charles Murray and other researchers into IQ heritability expect that they won’t narrow in the future.  To believe they will is blind faith.  A First World nation won’t sustain itself or its freedoms with a Third World population.

I realize that none of this is likely to convince you to abandon your support of the Amnesty program.  But maybe I can convince you to take a stand on an aspect of current immigration policy on which we (and all libertarians) should be united in opposition, both philosophically and practically.  And that is the U.S. government’s participation in the United Nations Refugee Resettlement Program.  

Under this program, the government transports people from some of the most volatile places in the world (e.g., Somalia) and sets up communities for them here.  These are among the lowest-IQ, least self-sufficient, and highest-risk immigrants we receive in terms of their rates of engaging in violent crime and terrorism.  They weren’t invited here by any private citizens and would have no means of getting here without the intervening aid of government.

Have you or will you make the libertarian case against the Refugee Resettlement Program?

Boudreaux's response: "I know too little about the program that you mention to comment upon it."

My response: It is not even necessary to come to the conclusion that Chechen, Iraqi, Somali Muslim, etc. refugees are a net threat to our freedoms in order to come to the conclusion that the government shouldn't be using taxpayer dollars to bring more of them here.  Refugee Resettlement is a Big Government welfare program.  What more do you need to know?


  1. Don and many other famous libertarians seem totally oblivious to IQ research.

  2. This is what prevents me from embracing libertarianism totally... the fanatical open boarders, screw the dumb proles that already live here (and their future standard of living), I got mine, fuck 'em attitude.

    Or to paraphrase Heartiste: Ivory tower, high barrier to entry academia for me; open borders, tooth and claw "creative destruction" of your future prospects and way of life, as you're forced into competition with the entirety of the 3rd world, for thee.