Video: Why I’m Against Open Borders

In this video, I make my case against open borders. Open border advocates have been doubling down since Hoppe’s talk was released. In it he suggested a halt of mass immigration.

Video Notes:
  • The common argument for open borders is that it is in violation of the NAP to prevent an immigrant from crossing the border. Confused libertines claim that freedom of movement applies here, but, of course, there is no such thing as freedom of movement according to private property norms. In a society based on private property, there is no freedom of movement, only permissibly granted movement by property owners. Of course, you may move freely on your own property.

 

  • Open borders libertarians miss the mark. While it may require force to stop someone from immigrating, the original act of aggression or violation of property rights was the act of the state taxing people to fund the development of public property and infrastructure.

  • Because the state uses stolen resources to fund public property development and infrastructure, the state can’t possibly grant unrestricted access to public property by opening its borders. It isn’t the state’s property to give away. It isn’t unowned property or a general condition of human action, such as air.

 

  • Whether we like it or not, public property is a means. Roads and other infrastructure are means to attaining ends. Because public property is in fact means, not a general condition, it is a scarce resource that is subject to private property norms. Because it is scarce, it can be exclusively possessed and accessed. It should be clearer now that public property is not the property of the state, or unowned property, but the property of tax victims.

  • Austrian economics offers this great insight: To quote Rothbard in Man, Economy, and State, “action does not necessarily mean that the individual is ‘active’ as opposed to ‘passive,’ in the colloquial sense.” For the state to not enforce the borders is in fact action by the state. Refusing to enforce borders is just as much an action as halting immigration. Therefore, if the state were to have open borders, this would be an action constituting an unjust transfer of resources, namely public property, from victims of taxation to an unlimited number of immigrants.

 

  • Such a proposal should be laughed at by any libertarians who understand private property rights to be the foundation of libertarianism.

  • To be clear, this isn’t a consequential argument that it’s better to have closed than open borders for the sake of citizens. My argument is that open borders is logically inconsistent with libertarian ethics.

 

  • If you still don’t agree, follow the chain of the transfer of property. Tax dollars are taken from citizens without permission, making it an illegitimate transfer. Tax dollars are invested in public infrastructure by the state. By granting unrestricted access to public infrastructure with an open border policy, the state would be unjustly inviting newcomers onto property that they do not have a claim to.

 

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The Biggest Reason Why I Admire and Respect Hans-Hermann Hoppe

Besides making enormous contributions to sociology, philosophy, economics, history, and libertarianism, here’s the biggest reason why I admire and respect Hans-Hermann Hoppe:

This is an excerpt from  Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.‘s Forward to Hoppe’s book, A Short History of Man: Progress and Decline:

Hans-Hermann Hoppe is one of the most remarkable libertarian scholars of our time. He began as a prize student of Jürgen Habermas, the famous German philosopher and social theorist. Habermas was, and remains to this day, a committed Marxist. He is the leader of the notorious Frankfurt school.

Habermas was very impressed with Hans, and, under the patronage of this eminent Marxist, Hans had every reason to expect a stellar academic career in his native Germany. A problem soon arose, though, one which has had happy results for all those who love liberty. Hans soon came to realize that the leftism and socialism he had grown up with was intellectually barren and morally bankrupt. He discovered on his own the great works of Ludwig von Mises and Murray N. Rothbard.

Austrian economics and Murray’s anarchism were not what Habermas had in mind. By becoming a libertarian, Hans effectively ended his chances for a chair at a major German university, even though his intellectual accomplishments easily qualified him for one. Like Murray, though, Hans is a scholar of complete intellectual integrity. He would not surrender what he had come to realize was the truth, whatever the cost to his own career.

Hans decided to come to United States in order to study with Murray, who was then teaching in New York. When I met him, I was struck by Hans’s firm commitment to Rothbardian principles and his outstanding intellectual ability. Murray, of course, immediately grasped Hans’s potential. When Murray was named to an endowed chair in economics at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, he worked to get Hans a position in the economics department as well. Together, the two of them made UNLV a major center for the study of Austrian economics; and they did so in the face of much opposition from some of their departmental colleagues.

Murray was especially intrigued by one of Hans’s main arguments. Hans’s teacher Habermas pioneered an approach to ethics based on the conditions for engaging in rational argument. In a way that Habermas would hardly approve, Hans turned Habermas’s ethics on its head. Instead of support for socialism, argumentation ethics as Hans explained it provided powerful support for self-ownership and private property.

In short, Hoppe’s commitment to truth, intellectual honesty, and logical consistency lost him a prestigious position at a German university. By turning away from Habermas’s Marxism and embracing Rothbard’s libertarianism Hoppe embodies Mises’s life motto:

Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito. (Do not give in to evil but proceed ever more boldly against it.)

 

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Why Establishment Libertarian Party People Hate on Hoppe

It is odd that establishment Libertarian Party people tend to hate on Hans-Hermann Hoppe, especially considering he is responsible for the ultimate justification of libertarian ethics. Hoppe outlined a strategy for libertarians in a recent talk. Perhaps, one of his points will shed some light on the Libertarian Party’s apparent opposition to his ideas…

“Don’t put your trust in politics and political parties. Just as academia and the academic world cannot be expected to play any significant role in a libertarian strategy for social change, so with politics and political parties. After all, it is the ultimate goal of libertarianism to put an end to all politics and to subject all interpersonal relations and conflicts to private law and civil law procedures. To be sure, under present or pervasively politicized conditions and involvement in politics and party politics cannot be entirely avoided.

However, in any such involvement, one must guard against the corrupting influence of power and the lure of money and perks that comes with it. And to minimize the risk and temptation that comes from this, it is advisable to concentrate one’s effort on the level of regional and local, rather than national politics and they are to promote a radical agenda of decentralization, of nullification, and peaceful separation, segregation, and secession.

Most importantly, however, we must take heed of Ludwig von Mises’s life motto: do not give in to evil, but proceed ever more boldly against it. That is, we must speak out whenever and wherever, whether in formal or informal, in gatherings against anyone affronting us with a by now only all-too-familiar political correct drivel and left egalitarian balderdash and unmistakably so no, hell no, you must be kidding. And in the meantime, given the almost complete mind control exercised by the ruling elites, academia, and the mainstream media, it already requires a good portion of courage to do that.

But, if we are not brave enough to do so now, and thus set an example for others to follow, matters will become increasingly worse and more dangerous in the future and we and Western civilization and the Western ideas of freedom and liberty will be wiped out and vanish.”

Hans-Hermann Hoppe, Libertarianism and the “Alt-Right” (PFS 2017)

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On the Birth Control Mandate

The US Department of Health and Human Services issued new rules regarding an Obamacare birth control mandate.

According to CNN:

The rules would let a broad range of employers — including nonprofits, private firms and publicly traded companies — stop offering contraceptives through their health insurance plans if they have a “sincerely held religious or moral objection,” senior agency officials said on a call about the implementation and enforcement of the new rules.

Republicans want to make this about religious freedom while Democrats want to make this a women’s issue. Naturally, both parties miss the mark. I want to make this an issue of economics and property rights, two things both parties tend to ignore.

Again, from CNN:

The ACLU filed a lawsuit Friday. The organization’s senior staff attorney Brigitte Amiri called the administration’s rules “blatantly unconstitutional.”

I’m not so sure the Obamacare mandates were constitutional in the first place! How can it be constitutional to force employers to cover their employee’s health insurance? This is a blatant violation of property rights. Just as I can’t force my neighbor to pay for my health care, neither should the government be able to force people to pay for other’s health care.

Of course, these new rules alarmed many women who have been getting birth control paid for by their employer through insurance. They would have been better off paying out of pocket for their own birth control all along. When a good or service is provided through insurance rather than paying out of pocket, the consumer is less worried about the cost of that good or service. Because insurance companies are covering the costs instead of individuals themselves, drug companies and other health care providers can increase prices. I would expect that the cost of birth control has increased since the mandate took effect. The increase in demand due to the mandate would surely continue to increase prices as more and more women gained access to insurance-covered birth control. So, any women who lose their insurance coverage for birth control will likely pay more out of pocket than if the mandate was never implemented.

The Trump administration is doing a good thing by changing the rules to accommodate for religious freedom. However, the mandate should be completely repealed and everyone should be exempt from being forced to provide insurance for anyone. This would be a start toward dismantling the regulatory monstrosity that is the US health care system.

More liberty is a good thing. If women wish to be free to choose, then they should respect their employer’s right to choose what insurance plan, if any, to provide as a benefit. I mean, nothing says independence and equality like using the state to force your employer to pay for birth control, right?

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5 Reasons why the Left Blames the Gun

Almost immediately after the attack in Las Vegas, some left-leaning politicians and  public figures pushed gun control as a solution to stopping mass violence. Some even tried to argue that Republicans and the NRA are responsible for these continuing tragedies. Here are 5 reasons why the left blames the gun:

  1. Political Points/Popularity/Ratings – Politicians, celebrities, entertainers, media, etc., are all quick to appeal to the populous by making emotional appeals to the gun control agenda in the wake of mass shootings. Regardless of how the individual feels about the issue, these appeals are easy points  for politicians and the media to garner public support. Of course, they can’t resist the opportunity to capitalize on a tragedy.
  2. To Hide the Government Failure – Apparently, Stephen Paddock bought his weapons legally. Many are quick to say that no one could have stopped this. But, wait… I thought the reason for mass surveillance on U.S. citizens was to prevent acts of terrorism and other mass murders like the one in Las Vegas. What good is all the police, military, intelligence, etc., funding if preventing attacks like this one is out of government’s hands? Of course, events hire private security inside the event. In the future, event producers shouldn’t assume the perimeter and nearby areas are secure even though the government is supposed to be responsible for security and defense.
  3. To Remove the Responsibility from Friends and Family – By blaming the gun, leftists can distance the debate from the idea that family plays a larger role in one’s life than the government. By blaming the gun, leftists somewhat remove the blame from the friends and family of the attacker. Whether friends and family ignored or missed warning signs, or if the attacker was influenced by an abusive or neglecting upbringing, blaming the gun puts these issues aside. There is no doubt that government policies have eroded the institution of family. Not only do welfare and other government policies lead to broken families, but children are forced to spend most of their day in government schools, away from family. Just as public school attempts to fill the family’s responsibility of raising children, gun control laws and others attempt to fill the individual’s responsibility of being responsible for themselves and their actions.
  4. To Promote Moral Relativism It is not enough that murder is illegal, we must ban guns as well! This is the implication when you promote moral relativism and deny an objective morality based on self-ownership. The left cannot say that murder is wrong and anyone who does it would face consequences. Rather, they go after the fact that the individual had the liberty to make the bad decision. Of course, most leftists will say that murder is immoral. However, the whole ideology is essentially predicated on the idea that violence is justified against peaceful individuals in certain situations. For example, some leftists will go as far as to say violence is justified to carry out the worker’s revolution and seize the means of production to be owned in common. More often, leftists say violence is justified in collecting taxes to from individuals. Another example is abortion. While most people recognize murder is wrong and that individuals must be held accountable, not the objects they use to carry out the murder, the left must blame the gun.
  5. Remove Responsibility from the Attacker – This ties in with numbers 2, 3, and 4. People on the left were talking about gun control long before any motive has been suggested. This skirts the responsibility from the shooter to the gun.

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Jimmy Kimmel: Reality doesn’t Care about your Feelings

Jimmy Kimmel made another emotional appeal on his show after the tragic event in Las Vegas. Whether he is crying for socialized medicine or gun control, Kimmel needs to realize: Reality doesn’t care about your feelings.

Reason, rationality, and logic must be used when we discuss matters of economics and politics. Two emotionally-charged issues that frequently come up in the media are health care and gun control. All the crying in the world cannot reconcile the facts that gun control doesn’t work and that socialism doesn’t work.

First, to address the universal health care delusion. Nothing on earth is free. We live in a world of scarcity. There are limited resources to be used to reach desired ends or goals. Universal health care does not address this. Implementing universal health care doesn’t change the reality that we live in a world of scarcity.

Because resources are scarce, they must be rationed in some way. Resources are rationed in markets by prices. Highly-demanded goods in low supply are more expensive so as to ration the available supply. For example, surgeries performed by a specialist will cost more money than a routine check-up. Prices help ensure that scarce resources be allocated efficiently. Because of the high price, less people will demand that good or service.

If medicine becomes socialized, it is “free” in that there are no prices for consumers. However, there must still be a rationing mechanism. In a universal health care system, goods and services are rationed by the government instead of by prices like in a market economy. So, rather than being in control of you and your family’s future, the government decides who gets what health care at what time. Of course, people would feel less compelled to stay healthy if they aren’t bearing the costs of their healthcare and there are  other problems with universal health care. Unfortunately, these concerns aren’t addressed by the weeping leftists on TV. This shouldn’t be surprising. Jimmy Kimmel is an entertainer whose job is to entertain and keep people watching, not bust people’s bubble regarding their utopian delusions.

Murder is illegal, but that doesn’t stop people from committing murder. As we can see in the UK and elsewhere around the globe, banning guns and other weapons doesn’t prevent violence. Rather, it only ensures that good-willed people won’t be able to defend themselves. Criminals don’t care about gun laws. They buy them illegally or steal them. Or, they use knives, automobiles, acid, etc., instead. The reality is that bad people will do bad things regardless of the law. Disarming the good people doesn’t prevent bad people from doing bad things.

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College Students: Watch out for 3 Marxist Myths from Progressive Professors

A few ideas with Marxist roots to watch out for to avoid indoctrination at college: white privilege, the patriarchy, and the problem of income inequality.

According to Wikipedia,

“White privilege is a term for societal privileges that benefit people identified as white in Western countries, beyond what is commonly experienced by non-white people under the same social, political, or economic circumstances. Academic perspectives such as critical race theory and whiteness studies use the concept of “white privilege” to analyze how racism and racialized societies affect the lives of white or white-skinned people.”

One issue with this idea of white privilege is in its definition. What exactly are the, “societal privileges” that white people receive over, “non-white people under the same social, political, or economic circumstances?” If a group of white people and non-white people are all living, “under the same social, political, or economic circumstances,” then where is the discrepancy regarding privilege? How can one have privilege over another person of the, “same social, political, or economic circumstances?”

More often, white privilege is used to shame white people into thinking everything they have and anything they can accomplish is due to their privilege rather than any effort of theirs. This serves to justify income redistribution from supposedly rich white people to poor non-white people, which is quite a racist assumption. This is one of the ways the left has renewed Marx’s idea of class struggles. Instead of proletariat and bourgeoisie, it’s non-white and white.

According to Wikipedia,

“Feminist theory defines patriarchy as an unjust social system that enforces gender roles and is oppressive to both men and women. It often includes any social, political, or economic mechanism that evokes male dominance over women.”

So, this is the idea that masculine men rule the world and subject everyone else to their gender roles. Occam’s razor would say that perhaps gender roles exist and continue to exist for a simpler reason. Anyway, it is not uncommon for young women to be taught by so-called “feminists” that every problem they have is due to institutionalized patriarchy and they are powerless. Again, this is a revamping of Marxist rhetoric. The point is to teach young women that they are powerless and there are always bad men right around the corner, so they better rely on the state to protect them.




Income inequality is another thing that professors use to indoctrinate students into an anti-capitalist mentality. They will blame the 1% for everyone’s problems. They will treat profit as if it is inherently evil. They will treat profit as a zero-sum game and they’ll treat government as the divine solution to all the world’s problems.

PDF Version

Jason Stapleton Program 652: Check Your White Privilege

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Government Sets a Bad Example for the Rest of Us

With the U.S. government nearing $20 trillion in debt, why should its citizens be self-sufficient, productive, and fiscally responsible? The federal government sets a bad example for the rest of us in various ways.

 

According to an article from the New York Times,

“The Republican-led Senate on Thursday approved legislation to raise the debt limit…. Republican leaders had wanted a longer-term extension of the debt limit, but were left with little recourse when Mr. Trump sided with the top Democrats in Congress…”




It seems some Republicans are justifying the raising of the debt limit because the aid is so desperately needed to help after hurricane Harvey and other natural disasters happening now. However, raising the debt limit likely wasn’t necessary to provide relief to the victims of hurricane Harvey. Also from that New York Times article,

“Before approving the legislation, the Senate rejected a proposal by Mr. Sasse to pass only the hurricane relief measure that had sailed through the House, without the debt limit or stopgap spending measure as part of it. Lawmakers also rejected a proposal by Senator Rand Paul, Republican of Kentucky, to pay for hurricane relief using funds intended to be spent on foreign aid.”

So, Senator Ben Sasse and Senator Rand Paul both had ways to provide relief without raising the debt limit. Because Trump worked with Democrats to make this very liberal fiscal policy approved, his voter base should feel betrayed yet again by his actions that are contrary to his campaign rhetoric and promises.

The politicians in Washington right now would rather allow for more debt to be placed on the heads of future generations than to have the responsibility of cutting some other part of the budget to be able to pay for the disaster relief. They won’t face any consequences except maybe not getting reelected. If any household was struck with a budget emergency, simply extending their debt limit could be disastrous. Because us average people can’t print money, borrow money, or simply take it through taxation, in a budget emergency we would have to make difficult cuts to out budgets to be able to pay for the emergency.

If everyone ran their lives the way the federal government runs the country, there would be absolute chaos and turmoil. For one, government relies on the threat of force to collect taxes. If any person did this, it would be considered extortion. If everyone ignored the economic realities of the world and printed their own money, there would quickly be hyperinflation and an economic collapse. The government does things that would be inconceivable for a private individual to do.

Pay attention to who acts fiscally responsible in Washington. Don’t vote for politicians who won’t uphold libertarian principles.

PDF Version

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Frustrations with “Libertarian Socialists”

Liberty and Capitalism go hand in hand. Don’t be another useful idiot for the left.




Socialism is the abolition of private property ownership. It is not sharing. It is not a group of workers owning a business together. As long as you are able to choose whether you share or keep your things, you have capitalism. Socialism denies individuals the choice of whether to share their things or keep them. Socialism prohibits individual liberty by restricting private ownership. Socialism is antithetical to libertarianism. This is reality, not propaganda.

  • Joseph Salerno from the Mises Institute explains why rational economic decision-making is impossible without private property and prices.

 

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