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Tea Parties vs. Open Immigration. My contradiction and dilema.

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Now, the opposition to immigration is, I think, almost invariably due to a collectivist premise. Namely this – “the Americans own America” or “the Swedes own Sweden” or “the Russians own Russia” and so forth.

The "opposition to immigration" is for a variety of reasons, some good, some bad, not all of which can fit within the cookie-cutter mold you are prescribing from vacuum. The very term "opposition to immigration" as you are using it is a package deal, as you are lumping together critics of unrestrained immigration (anarchy) with people who are against immigration and immigrants in general.

When people say that a government has a right to restrict immigration, they are saying – “the people of this nation have a right to decide (collectively, by vote, in a democracy or a republic) who gets to live on the territory of this country.” Now, the right to one´s property is the right to decide how that property is to be used. So the idea that the citizens of one country have a right to decide, together, who gets to live in that country means that the citizens of that country *own*, together, the entire geographical territory of that country. Because, they are assuming that they have the right to decide the use of that country´s territory. And this is, of course, sheer socialism!

The government's role in society is to protect individual rights. Immigration should be screened by the government to make sure that only good, hardworking, disease free individuals enter our country. This does not equate to an arbitrary political process where citizens can vote people in or out of the country like some 9-year-old's club in a treehouse.

I think that the only way an Objectivist who is against free immigration *might* be able to defend himself against the charge that he is guilty of collectivism, would be to say – “I am not against free immigration *on principle*. But this is an emergency! The majority of the immigrants are voting for the leftists!” Well, such an Objectivist is not guilty of collectivism, I suppose. But how would he defend himself against the charge that he is guilty of *pragmatism*? Should we not act on principle? Even when doing so does not seem to be expedient?

Taking actions that lead to self-destruction is not rationally acting on principle. What is moral and what is practical should never be divorced from each other.

Sure, it is not convenient if a majority of the immigrants vote in a way which we Objectivists do not like. But does that give us the right to violate the immigrants´ rights? Even for the purpose of defending *our* rights? (Actually, I think that trying to defend our own rights by fighting *against* the proper policy, i.e. against free immigration, is a dead end. I think that it would be more fruitful to fight *for* the proper policy, i.e. for the abolition of the welfare state.)

It doesn't give us the right to interfere with their right to our destruction through gang warfare and political upheaval?

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Now, the opposition to immigration is, I think, almost invariably due to a collectivist premise. Namely this – “the Americans own America” or “the Swedes own Sweden” or “the Russians own Russia” and so forth.
The "opposition to immigration" is for a variety of reasons, some good, some bad, not all of which can fit within the cookie-cutter mold you are prescribing from vacuum. The very term "opposition to immigration" as you are using it is a package deal, as you are lumping together critics of unrestrained immigration (anarchy) with people who are against immigration and immigrants in general.

-- and then he arbitrarily ascribes a straw man argument, allegedly held in common to the whole mish-mash, that no one here has made.

When people say that a government has a right to restrict immigration, they are saying – “the people of this nation have a right to decide (collectively, by vote, in a democracy or a republic) who gets to live on the territory of this country.” Now, the right to one´s property is the right to decide how that property is to be used. So the idea that the citizens of one country have a right to decide, together, who gets to live in that country means that the citizens of that country *own*, together, the entire geographical territory of that country. Because, they are assuming that they have the right to decide the use of that country´s territory. And this is, of course, sheer socialism!

The government's role in society is to protect individual rights. Immigration should be screened by the government to make sure that only good, hardworking, disease free individuals enter our country. This does not equate to an arbitrary political process where citizens can vote people in or out of the country like some 9-year-old's club in a treehouse.

He has made up the straw man argument about "owning the country". It has nothing to do with the basis for proper immigration laws. Furthermore the pattern of argument that laws passed in accordance with the sovereignty of a nation are "socialist" by nature, because this allegedly assumes collective ownership of the country, is complete hogwash. That pattern is a fallacious argument against national laws as such in favor of anarchy. Socialism and anarchy are a false alternative and two sides of the same coin, in accordance with his promotion simultaneously of anarchy in immigration and social democracy.

But immigrants need not be "hardworking" to be allowed into the country if they work enough or otherwise have the means to take care of themselves, or can show that someone else will take care of them: For example, you wouldn't exclude the elderly grandparents of someone living in this country if he would take care of them -- at least you wouldn't have at the turn of the twentieth century before entitlement to medical care was deemed a government "right". Today it is more complex because of impossible circumstances imposed on us. That does not stop us from stating the proper principles, but it is a fact that must be contended with in reality today.

And you can't use a broad criterion like "good individuals", as appealing as that may sound when speaking very generally. Originally immigration was properly restricted to people who were not criminals, insane, carrying infectious diseases, etc., i.e., normally functioning human beings who would not be a threat to others. (There were also improper nationalistic quotas.) A broad, undelimited criterion of "good individual" would imply government approval of personal ethical values, which is not appropriate and which historically has in particular meant religion. In that context, it in turn implies government approved religion and exclusion of everything else, which even today would fortunately be regarded as unconstitutional.

I think that the only way an Objectivist who is against free immigration *might* be able to defend himself against the charge that he is guilty of collectivism, would be to say – “I am not against free immigration *on principle*. But this is an emergency! The majority of the immigrants are voting for the leftists!” Well, such an Objectivist is not guilty of collectivism, I suppose. But how would he defend himself against the charge that he is guilty of *pragmatism*? Should we not act on principle? Even when doing so does not seem to be expedient?
Taking actions that lead to self-destruction is not rationally acting on principle. What is moral and what is practical should never be divorced from each other.

The first fallacies with his argument, more fundamental than ethics, are that "free immigration" is left undefined and he gratuitously assumes some "Objectivists" are subjected to a "charge" of "guilty of collectivism" without any regard for what anyone has in fact argued for. The whole method of argument in which he imagines in his head a series of arguments that his imagined opponent "must" make is completely invalid and detached from reality. This is a thoroughly worthless rationalistic approach that requires no answer.

Furthermore, the more specific invocation of accusations in the name of "Pragmatism" opposing "principles", which Carlos addressed, is another false alternative common among rationalists, who divorce what works in reality from their free-floating "principles". Pragmatism as a school of philosophy regards what "works" (for which the criteria are left unspecified) as itself the criterion for truth. To reject that position does mean that what works is irrelevant to one's principles -- in ethics, science, engineering, or anything else -- as if the facts of reality and success in ones goals -- what in fact can work -- have nothing to do with formation and application of principles.

The ethical implications of this are, as Carlos put it: there is no dichotomy between the moral and the practical, and self destructive action is not rationally acting on principle. Ethical criteria for actions do not magically drop out of chains of out-of-context rationalistic deductions (including solipsistic phony Socratic dialogues).

Sure, it is not convenient if a majority of the immigrants vote in a way which we Objectivists do not like. But does that give us the right to violate the immigrants´ rights? Even for the purpose of defending *our* rights? (Actually, I think that trying to defend our own rights by fighting *against* the proper policy, i.e. against free immigration, is a dead end. I think that it would be more fruitful to fight *for* the proper policy, i.e. for the abolition of the welfare state.)
It doesn't give us the right to interfere with their right to our destruction through gang warfare and political upheaval?
He confuses voting for legitimately optional policies under a legitimate republican form of government with his own stated advocacy of social democracy in which anyone has the right to vote for anything. There is no "right" to that in the name of "immigration" or anything else. This is not a matter of what someone "does not like". It is a violation of our rights which we have a right to oppose. He takes his rationalistic floating abstractions as absolutes and then rejects anything that opposes that as subjective preference or "collectivist premises". We are expected to turn the other cheek while we are physically overrun, allowed to do no more than the impossible task of trying talk the hordes out of imposing more progressive welfare statism before we are destroyed. The truth is the opposite. Rational egoism does not sanction self-sacrifice to collectivist social democracy.

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But immigrants need not be "hardworking" to be allowed into the country if they work enough or otherwise have the means to take care of themselves, or can show that someone else will take care of them: For example, you wouldn't exclude the elderly grandparents of someone living in this country if he would take care of them -- at least you wouldn't have at the turn of the twentieth century before entitlement to medical care was deemed a government "right". Today it is more complex because of impossible circumstances imposed on us. That does not stop us from stating the proper principles, but it is a fact that must be contended with in reality today.

Yes, good point. I guess I was thinking of it in terms of they won't be lazy bums who wind up being homeless or something like that.

And you can't use a broad criterion like "good individuals", as appealing as that may sound when speaking very generally. Originally immigration was properly restricted to people who were not criminals, insane, carrying infectious diseases, etc., i.e., normally functioning human beings who would not be a threat to others. (There were also improper nationalistic quotas.) A broad, undelimited criterion of "good individual" would imply government approval of personal ethical values, which is not appropriate and which historically has in particular meant religion. In that context, it in turn implies government approved religion and exclusion of everything else, which even today would fortunately be regarded as unconstitutional.

Another good point. "good person" was sloppy language for "not a criminal".

I think that the only way an Objectivist who is against free immigration *might* be able to defend himself against the charge that he is guilty of collectivism, would be to say – “I am not against free immigration *on principle*. But this is an emergency! The majority of the immigrants are voting for the leftists!” Well, such an Objectivist is not guilty of collectivism, I suppose. But how would he defend himself against the charge that he is guilty of *pragmatism*? Should we not act on principle? Even when doing so does not seem to be expedient?
Taking actions that lead to self-destruction is not rationally acting on principle. What is moral and what is practical should never be divorced from each other.

The first fallacies with his argument, more fundamental than ethics, are that "free immigration" is left undefined and he gratuitously assumes some "Objectivists" are subjected to a "charge" of "guilty of collectivism" without any regard for what anyone has in fact argued for. The whole method of argument in which he imagines in his head a series of arguments that his imagined opponent "must" make is completely invalid and detached from reality. This is a thoroughly worthless rationalistic approach that requires no answer.

Even if it requires no answer, the practice of seeing other's arguments broken down and examined is infinitely useful for people trying to improve their own thinking habits. I know that's what chiefly helped me.

Furthermore, the more specific invocation of accusations in the name of "Pragmatism" opposing "principles", which Carlos addressed, is another false alternative common among rationalists, who divorce what works in reality from their free-floating "principles". Pragmatism as a school of philosophy regards what "works" (for which the criteria are left unspecified) as itself the criterion for truth. To reject that position does mean that what works is irrelevant to one's principles -- in ethics, science, engineering, or anything else -- as if the facts of reality and success in ones goals -- what in fact can work -- have nothing to do with formation and application of principles.

The ethical implications of this are, as Carlos put it: there is no dichotomy between the moral and the practical, and self destructive action is not rationally acting on principle. Ethical criteria for actions do not magically drop out of chains of out-of-context rationalistic deductions (including solipsistic phony Socratic dialogues).

Properly understanding the moral-practical false-dichotomy and its solution is probably something that many new/young Objectivists stumble on (I know it was/is for me). Thank you for the careful explanation.

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Now, the opposition to immigration is, I think, almost invariably due to a collectivist premise. Namely this – “the Americans own America” or “the Swedes own Sweden” or “the Russians own Russia” and so forth.

The "opposition to immigration" is for a variety of reasons, some good, some bad, not all of which can fit within the cookie-cutter mold you are prescribing from vacuum. The very term "opposition to immigration" as you are using it is a package deal, as you are lumping together critics of unrestrained immigration (anarchy) with people who are against immigration and immigrants in general.

When people say that a government has a right to restrict immigration, they are saying – “the people of this nation have a right to decide (collectively, by vote, in a democracy or a republic) who gets to live on the territory of this country.” Now, the right to one´s property is the right to decide how that property is to be used. So the idea that the citizens of one country have a right to decide, together, who gets to live in that country means that the citizens of that country *own*, together, the entire geographical territory of that country. Because, they are assuming that they have the right to decide the use of that country´s territory. And this is, of course, sheer socialism!

The government's role in society is to protect individual rights. Immigration should be screened by the government to make sure that only good, hardworking, disease free individuals enter our country. This does not equate to an arbitrary political process where citizens can vote people in or out of the country like some 9-year-old's club in a treehouse.

I think that the only way an Objectivist who is against free immigration *might* be able to defend himself against the charge that he is guilty of collectivism, would be to say – “I am not against free immigration *on principle*. But this is an emergency! The majority of the immigrants are voting for the leftists!” Well, such an Objectivist is not guilty of collectivism, I suppose. But how would he defend himself against the charge that he is guilty of *pragmatism*? Should we not act on principle? Even when doing so does not seem to be expedient?

Taking actions that lead to self-destruction is not rationally acting on principle. What is moral and what is practical should never be divorced from each other.

Sure, it is not convenient if a majority of the immigrants vote in a way which we Objectivists do not like. But does that give us the right to violate the immigrants´ rights? Even for the purpose of defending *our* rights? (Actually, I think that trying to defend our own rights by fighting *against* the proper policy, i.e. against free immigration, is a dead end. I think that it would be more fruitful to fight *for* the proper policy, i.e. for the abolition of the welfare state.)

It doesn't give us the right to interfere with their right to our destruction through gang warfare and political upheaval?

So you equate "unrestrained immigration" with "anarchy"? Well, maybe we are talking about two slightly different things. I advocate *free* immigration. Foreigners should not need any special permission by the government of, for example, Sweden in order to move to Sweden, *if* they meet a few basic qualitications. These are, as I see it, that they should not be criminals, that they should not have any contagious diseases and that they should not be insane. Now, if you maintain that *this* kind of free immigration is anarchy, then I would disagree. Every individual has a right to move to, work in and live at any place he wants to, independent of such artificial constructs as national borders. Just as the East German government was violating individual rights when it forcibly prevented people from leaving the country, so the Swedish government is violating individual rights when it stops non-criminal, non-contagios disease bearing, non-insane individuals from immigrating *to* Sweden (although, to be fair, Sweden is not as bad as East Germany, since it does not *shoot* at "illegal" immigrants). It is not an advocacy of anarchy to say that people should be permitted an "unrestricted exercise of their individual rights".

I agree with you completely that the moral and the practical should never be divorced from each other. That is precisely why I argue that we should follow the rational principle that individuals have a right to take any non-force initiating action they wish, including the action of immigrating to any country they wish to. And since free immigration is morally right, investing one´s limited time and energy in fighting free immigration is a waste of that time and energy. It would be much more fruitful to invest that time and energy in fighting something *immoral*, such as the welfare state, multiculturalism and pacifism rather than to invest it in fighting something *moral*, namely free immigration.

As for preventing "gang warfare" and "political upheaval" - I think that there are more effective ways of doing that, than violating the rights of immigrants. For example, long-range the solution is to spread the right philosophy. And if stop-gap measures are needed to buy time, then beef up the police and the system of justice, legalize drugs (in order to undermine organized crime), privatize education (in order to make it easier for parents to protect their own children against indoctrination with things like multi-culturalism), reduce or eliminate welfare, de-regulate the economy etc.

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Now, the opposition to immigration is, I think, almost invariably due to a collectivist premise. Namely this – “the Americans own America” or “the Swedes own Sweden” or “the Russians own Russia” and so forth.
The "opposition to immigration" is for a variety of reasons, some good, some bad, not all of which can fit within the cookie-cutter mold you are prescribing from vacuum. The very term "opposition to immigration" as you are using it is a package deal, as you are lumping together critics of unrestrained immigration (anarchy) with people who are against immigration and immigrants in general.

-- and then he arbitrarily ascribes a straw man argument, allegedly held in common to the whole mish-mash, that no one here has made.

He has made up the straw man argument about "owning the country". It has nothing to do with the basis for proper immigration laws. Furthermore the pattern of argument that laws passed in accordance with the sovereignty of a nation are "socialist" by nature, because this allegedly assumes collective ownership of the country, is complete hogwash. That pattern is a fallacious argument against national laws as such in favor of anarchy. Socialism and anarchy are a false alternative and two sides of the same coin, in accordance with his promotion simultaneously of anarchy in immigration and social democracy.

Sure, it is not convenient if a majority of the immigrants vote in a way which we Objectivists do not like. But does that give us the right to violate the immigrants´ rights? Even for the purpose of defending *our* rights? (Actually, I think that trying to defend our own rights by fighting *against* the proper policy, i.e. against free immigration, is a dead end. I think that it would be more fruitful to fight *for* the proper policy, i.e. for the abolition of the welfare state.)
It doesn't give us the right to interfere with their right to our destruction through gang warfare and political upheaval?
He confuses voting for legitimately optional policies under a legitimate republican form of government with his own stated advocacy of social democracy in which anyone has the right to vote for anything. There is no "right" to that in the name of "immigration" or anything else. This is not a matter of what someone "does not like". It is a violation of our rights which we have a right to oppose. He takes his rationalistic floating abstractions as absolutes and then rejects anything that opposes that as subjective preference or "collectivist premises". We are expected to turn the other cheek while we are physically overrun, allowed to do no more than the impossible task of trying talk the hordes out of imposing more progressive welfare statism before we are destroyed. The truth is the opposite. Rational egoism does not sanction self-sacrifice to collectivist social democracy.

It is not a "straw man" argument to say that restrictions on immigration. in a country with a representative form of government such as a republic or a democracy, other than ones that are justified by protection of individual rights (such as excluding criminals and individuals with contagious diseases), by their nature rest on the premise that "the Swedes own Sweden", "the Americans own America" etc. The government of such a country is acting as an agent of its citizens. So if the government gets to exclude some people (non-criminals, non-contagious disease bearing) from moving to the country, that necessarily means that the people of the country, together, by voting, have a right to decide who gets to live anywhere on the nation´s territory. And "property" means essentially the right to the use and disposal of that which one owns. So the idea that the people of the USA, have a right to decide by voting i.e. collectively, who gets to live on the American territory, necessarily implies that the Americans, collectively, own the American territory. And that is a socialistic idea.

Do you still think that the reasoning above is "hogwash", emw? Well, then you are by implication accusing *Harry Binswanger* of speaking hogwash. The reasoning above is not mine. I got it from Harry Binswanger. About two years ago, Harry explaiend the issue of free immigration in this fashion on the HBList. And I maintain that Harry´s logic is flawless. I know that you often think that my logic is rationalism - but you are not going to accuse Harry Binswanger of rationalism, are you?

Of course, the fact that Harry Binswanger advocates free immigration does not automatically mean that free immigration is right. We should not commit the fallacy of ad verecundiam. But you have a lot of temerity if you continue to say that the idea above is "hogwash".

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Sure, it is not convenient if a majority of the immigrants vote in a way which we Objectivists do not like. But does that give us the right to violate the immigrants´ rights? Even for the purpose of defending *our* rights? (Actually, I think that trying to defend our own rights by fighting *against* the proper policy, i.e. against free immigration, is a dead end. I think that it would be more fruitful to fight *for* the proper policy, i.e. for the abolition of the welfare state.)
It doesn't give us the right to interfere with their right to our destruction through gang warfare and political upheaval?
He confuses voting for legitimately optional policies under a legitimate republican form of government with his own stated advocacy of social democracy in which anyone has the right to vote for anything. There is no "right" to that in the name of "immigration" or anything else. This is not a matter of what someone "does not like". It is a violation of our rights which we have a right to oppose. He takes his rationalistic floating abstractions as absolutes and then rejects anything that opposes that as subjective preference or "collectivist premises". We are expected to turn the other cheek while we are physically overrun, allowed to do no more than the impossible task of trying talk the hordes out of imposing more progressive welfare statism before we are destroyed. The truth is the opposite. Rational egoism does not sanction self-sacrifice to collectivist social democracy.

Well, it is arguable whether it should be a crime to *vote* for a violation of individual rights. I would hesitate to have anyone arrested at the voting booth because he merely *voted* for the Social Democrats or the Islamists or the Green fascists or what have you. But I fully agree with you that it is a crime carry through, in action, *any* violation of a single individual´s rights. No matter how large your gang is.

And that means that even the entire people of the USA do not have any right to vote away the right of a foreign individual to immigrate to the USA.

And it is absurd to accuse me of advocating social democracy. I despise the social democrats like few other people I know. It is at least on the borderline of being a smear to call me a "social democrat".

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Now, the opposition to immigration is, I think, almost invariably due to a collectivist premise. Namely this – “the Americans own America” or “the Swedes own Sweden” or “the Russians own Russia” and so forth.
The "opposition to immigration" is for a variety of reasons, some good, some bad, not all of which can fit within the cookie-cutter mold you are prescribing from vacuum. The very term "opposition to immigration" as you are using it is a package deal, as you are lumping together critics of unrestrained immigration (anarchy) with people who are against immigration and immigrants in general.

-- and then he arbitrarily ascribes a straw man argument, allegedly held in common to the whole mish-mash, that no one here has made.

He has made up the straw man argument about "owning the country". It has nothing to do with the basis for proper immigration laws. Furthermore the pattern of argument that laws passed in accordance with the sovereignty of a nation are "socialist" by nature, because this allegedly assumes collective ownership of the country, is complete hogwash. That pattern is a fallacious argument against national laws as such in favor of anarchy. Socialism and anarchy are a false alternative and two sides of the same coin, in accordance with his promotion simultaneously of anarchy in immigration and social democracy.

Sure, it is not convenient if a majority of the immigrants vote in a way which we Objectivists do not like. But does that give us the right to violate the immigrants´ rights? Even for the purpose of defending *our* rights? (Actually, I think that trying to defend our own rights by fighting *against* the proper policy, i.e. against free immigration, is a dead end. I think that it would be more fruitful to fight *for* the proper policy, i.e. for the abolition of the welfare state.)
It doesn't give us the right to interfere with their right to our destruction through gang warfare and political upheaval?
He confuses voting for legitimately optional policies under a legitimate republican form of government with his own stated advocacy of social democracy in which anyone has the right to vote for anything. There is no "right" to that in the name of "immigration" or anything else. This is not a matter of what someone "does not like". It is a violation of our rights which we have a right to oppose. He takes his rationalistic floating abstractions as absolutes and then rejects anything that opposes that as subjective preference or "collectivist premises". We are expected to turn the other cheek while we are physically overrun, allowed to do no more than the impossible task of trying talk the hordes out of imposing more progressive welfare statism before we are destroyed. The truth is the opposite. Rational egoism does not sanction self-sacrifice to collectivist social democracy.

It is not a "straw man" argument to say that restrictions on immigration. in a country with a representative form of government such as a republic or a democracy, other than ones that are justified by protection of individual rights (such as excluding criminals and individuals with contagious diseases), by their nature rest on the premise that "the Swedes own Sweden", "the Americans own America" etc. The government of such a country is acting as an agent of its citizens. So if the government gets to exclude some people (non-criminals, non-contagious disease bearing) from moving to the country, that necessarily means that the people of the country, together, by voting, have a right to decide who gets to live anywhere on the nation´s territory. And "property" means essentially the right to the use and disposal of that which one owns. So the idea that the people of the USA, have a right to decide by voting i.e. collectively, who gets to live on the American territory, necessarily implies that the Americans, collectively, own the American territory. And that is a socialistic idea.

It is a straw man because you are tilting at windmills that have nothing to do with what anyone here has argued. Your arbitrary insistence on what you claim must be someone else's "premises" are more of your rationalism. You make whole chains of non sequiturs, that evidently seem plausible to you in your own head, without regard to any connection to reality as you wander farther and farther away with the word manipulations in your imagined world. Stop your incessant psychologizing attributing your own speculations to other people's motives and "premises". There is nothing logical about your rambling rationalism.

Do you still think that the reasoning above is "hogwash", emw? Well, then you are by implication accusing *Harry Binswanger* of speaking hogwash. The reasoning above is not mine. I got it from Harry Binswanger. About two years ago, Harry explaiend the issue of free immigration in this fashion on the HBList. And I maintain that Harry´s logic is flawless. I know that you often think that my logic is rationalism - but you are not going to accuse Harry Binswanger of rationalism, are you?

Of course, the fact that Harry Binswanger advocates free immigration does not automatically mean that free immigration is right. We should not commit the fallacy of ad verecundiam. But you have a lot of temerity if you continue to say that the idea above is "hogwash".

Most of what you write here is worse than hogwash. What is wrong with your arguments has been explained to you several times; it is not arbitrarily asserted with nothing but "temerity". It takes "temerity" for you to continue to ignore that, while now trying to intimidate anyone into ignoring it through your appeals to supposed authority.

Whatever Harry Binswanger did or did not say, somewhere else, in some other context, and which is not published for us to look at, you have no business claiming it applies to anything that anyone here actually believes or has said. You have no credibility for objectively reporting what anyone else has said about anything at all, let alone any business trying to pull a stunt like that. No on has argued anything remotely like what you claim 'must' be the case. You know what the problems are that people here are concerned with -- or you could know if you would stop to read and comprehend it. Insofar as it concerns property it means the personal property that belongs to each of us as individuals, not some bizarre claim to own the whole country. This is more of your rationalism, this time in the form of "rationalism by intimidation". The 'how dare you have the temerity to call Harry Binswanger a rationalist' ploy is unbelievable. You have reached a new low.

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Sure, it is not convenient if a majority of the immigrants vote in a way which we Objectivists do not like. But does that give us the right to violate the immigrants´ rights? Even for the purpose of defending *our* rights? (Actually, I think that trying to defend our own rights by fighting *against* the proper policy, i.e. against free immigration, is a dead end. I think that it would be more fruitful to fight *for* the proper policy, i.e. for the abolition of the welfare state.)
It doesn't give us the right to interfere with their right to our destruction through gang warfare and political upheaval?
He confuses voting for legitimately optional policies under a legitimate republican form of government with his own stated advocacy of social democracy in which anyone has the right to vote for anything. There is no "right" to that in the name of "immigration" or anything else. This is not a matter of what someone "does not like". It is a violation of our rights which we have a right to oppose. He takes his rationalistic floating abstractions as absolutes and then rejects anything that opposes that as subjective preference or "collectivist premises". We are expected to turn the other cheek while we are physically overrun, allowed to do no more than the impossible task of trying talk the hordes out of imposing more progressive welfare statism before we are destroyed. The truth is the opposite. Rational egoism does not sanction self-sacrifice to collectivist social democracy.

Well, it is arguable whether it should be a crime to *vote* for a violation of individual rights. I would hesitate to have anyone arrested at the voting booth because he merely *voted* for the Social Democrats or the Islamists or the Green fascists or what have you. But I fully agree with you that it is a crime carry through, in action, *any* violation of a single individual´s rights. No matter how large your gang is.

No one has said that people should be arrested at the voting booth. Do not equivocate. We are talking about improper rationaizations for allowing a flood of people to illegally enter the country and change the form of government in the name of a "right" to immigration.

And that means that even the entire people of the USA do not have any right to vote away the right of a foreign individual to immigrate to the USA.

And that leap illustrates how you use equivocations for pure rationalism through your non-sequiturs. There is no "right" for a "foreign individual" to come into this country regardless of who or what he is and for what purpose. Proper laws are not a "gang" violating rights because they are the laws of a country against an "individual". You are supporting anarchism.

And it is absurd to accuse me of advocating social democracy. I despise the social democrats like few other people I know. It is at least on the borderline of being a smear to call me a "social democrat".

I have identified the fact that you advocate social democracy when you advocate that a flood of people have a "right" to come into this country and "vote" as the means to change the form of government and violate the rights of the individual. Social democracy means democratic rule under which anything is open to a "vote". Anarchism and government by gang rule are two sides of the same coin. You support both.

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So you equate "unrestrained immigration" with "anarchy"? Well, maybe we are talking about two slightly different things. I advocate *free* immigration. Foreigners should not need any special permission by the government of, for example, Sweden in order to move to Sweden, *if* they meet a few basic qualitications. These are, as I see it, that they should not be criminals, that they should not have any contagious diseases and that they should not be insane. Now, if you maintain that *this* kind of free immigration is anarchy, then I would disagree. Every individual has a right to move to, work in and live at any place he wants to, independent of such artificial constructs as national borders. Just as the East German government was violating individual rights when it forcibly prevented people from leaving the country, so the Swedish government is violating individual rights when it stops non-criminal, non-contagios disease bearing, non-insane individuals from immigrating *to* Sweden (although, to be fair, Sweden is not as bad as East Germany, since it does not *shoot* at "illegal" immigrants). It is not an advocacy of anarchy to say that people should be permitted an "unrestricted exercise of their individual rights".

Immigration should be free provided the government screens who gets in. This is what I call "restrained immigration".

I agree with you completely that the moral and the practical should never be divorced from each other. That is precisely why I argue that we should follow the rational principle that individuals have a right to take any non-force initiating action they wish, including the action of immigrating to any country they wish to. And since free immigration is morally right, investing one´s limited time and energy in fighting free immigration is a waste of that time and energy.

A contextless chain of reasoning based on "individual rights" (the same style of Libertarians, where individual rights take on intrinsic value and defies any context) that rationalizes a certain principle doesn't mean that principle will be practical. The moral is the practical, but provided that "moral" is something rationally grounded in reality.

It would be much more fruitful to invest that time and energy in fighting something *immoral*, such as the welfare state, multiculturalism and pacifism rather than to invest it in fighting something *moral*, namely free immigration.

These are long term goals that wouldn't be solved in 20 years, if ever, and are little consolation for people suffering from crimes right now, such as Arizona suffering from intolerable rates of kidnappings due to an unenforced border.

As for preventing "gang warfare" and "political upheaval" - I think that there are more effective ways of doing that, than violating the rights of immigrants. For example, long-range the solution is to spread the right philosophy. And if stop-gap measures are needed to buy time, then beef up the police and the system of justice, legalize drugs (in order to undermine organized crime), privatize education (in order to make it easier for parents to protect their own children against indoctrination with things like multi-culturalism), reduce or eliminate welfare, de-regulate the economy etc.

More things that will probably not happen in my lifetime, if ever. Yes, drug cartels wouldn't exist if they legalized drugs (probably), but that solution is not on the table. It's not going to happen (along with eliminate welfare, etc.). That doesn't mean we are supposed to do nothing about enforcing the border to keep out these bad things while we wage a philosophy crusade that will only have tangible effects 30 years from now, if ever.

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You should point out to the people who are against free immigration, that they have an element of collectism, and even socialism, in them.
What if a large percentage of those who sneak into this country tend to be pro-socialist? Is being against that the same as being pro-socialist?

There is a harsh reality, also, that if we can't control who comes through our borders then we are more open to invasion by terrorists. I don't know if terrorists are sneaking through our borders or not. But, I would like us to have control of our borders. I don't equate that to a violation of freedoms within our borders.

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There is a harsh reality, also, that if we can't control who comes through our borders then we are more open to invasion by terrorists. I don't know if terrorists are sneaking through our borders or not. But, I would like us to have control of our borders. I don't equate that to a violation of freedoms within our borders.

They are sneaking in and some have been caught going through border crossings to Canada. There are at least 10 million illegals now in the country. No one knows how bad the terrorist population is. Obviously the government has a responsibility for national defense and should be preventing this.

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What if a large percentage of those who sneak into this country tend to be pro-socialist? Is being against that the same as being pro-socialist?

His rationalism is filled with contradictions and arbitrary assertions. Posing obvious rhetorical questions or stating outright the nature of different aspects of this has had no impact on his responses. His responses, when he acknowledges what has been said at all, typically ignore the point, pick up on one part of a sentence, and continue to rationalize from there. He has remained mostly oblivious to statements made in response to him, continuing to wander off into the rationalist wilderness rather than acknowledging or addressing them. Whether or not he can tell the difference, the nature of his responses is what it is.

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It would be much more fruitful to invest that time and energy in fighting something *immoral*, such as the welfare state, multiculturalism and pacifism rather than to invest it in fighting something *moral*, namely free immigration.

These are long term goals that wouldn't be solved in 20 years, if ever, and are little consolation for people suffering from crimes right now, such as Arizona suffering from intolerable rates of kidnappings due to an unenforced border.

You know, Ayn Rand herself was so frustrated by Republicans who told her - "Maybe you are right in theory. But there´s no time for philosophy. We are in an emergency, and we have to do something fast!"

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There is a harsh reality, also, that if we can't control who comes through our borders then we are more open to invasion by terrorists. I don't know if terrorists are sneaking through our borders or not. But, I would like us to have control of our borders. I don't equate that to a violation of freedoms within our borders.

They are sneaking in and some have been caught going through border crossings to Canada. There are at least 10 million illegals now in the country. No one knows how bad the terrorist population is. Obviously the government has a responsibility for national defense and should be preventing this.

Well, emw. Are you going to begin arguing that the US government begin restricting and regulating movement across the border between the US and Canada? Maybe the American government should build a wall all the way across the US/Canada border, in order to keep out all the terrorists who sneak across it?

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I have identified the fact that you advocate social democracy when you advocate that a flood of people have a "right" to come into this country and "vote" as the means to change the form of government and violate the rights of the individual. Social democracy means democratic rule under which anything is open to a "vote". Anarchism and government by gang rule are two sides of the same coin. You support both.

You are *smearing* me when you say that I support "both" social democracy and anarchism.

I have adressed the argument of yours, that I advocate social democracy when I defend free immigration and a lot of the immigrants are socialists -although you insist on denying that I have done so. I have pointed out that I *agree* emphatically agree with the principle that nobody has a *moral* right to vote away my rights. But how can I fight people if they are on the premise that they have a *political* right to vote away my rights? I can fight, in principle, by two means. Argument and force. If I fight with arguments I have a chance of winning. But if I resort to force, I will inevitably lose, even if I "win", since even in the unlikely event that my small gang comes out the winner of a civil war against a majority that wants to institute, for example, socialism, the country that I wind up living in will be one destroyed by the civil war.

Now you may argue that this reasoning does not apply to socialistic *immigrants*, because they are *weaker* than the socialists at home. And it is *true* that the immigrants are weak. But how in the world are you going to be able to lock socialist immigrants out of the country, without also locking out innocent, *non-socialistic* immigrants? Are you going to ask all immigrants at the border - "Are you a socialist?"and turn away those who answer - "Yes." Well, the socialistic immigrants are, obviously, going to be smart enough to lie to the border police and deny that they are socialists. And then what are you going to do? Are you going to turn away *all* the immigrants, socialists as well as freedom-lovers? Or are you merely going to turn away the *Latino* immigrants, on the grounds that they are *likely* to be socialists?

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Of course, the fact that Harry Binswanger advocates free immigration does not automatically mean that free immigration is right. We should not commit the fallacy of ad verecundiam. But you have a lot of temerity if you continue to say that the idea above is "hogwash".

Most of what you write here is worse than hogwash. What is wrong with your arguments has been explained to you several times; it is not arbitrarily asserted with nothing but "temerity". It takes "temerity" for you to continue to ignore that, while now trying to intimidate anyone into ignoring it through your appeals to supposed authority.

Whatever Harry Binswanger did or did not say, somewhere else, in some other context, and which is not published for us to look at, you have no business claiming it applies to anything that anyone here actually believes or has said. You have no credibility for objectively reporting what anyone else has said about anything at all, let alone any business trying to pull a stunt like that. No on has argued anything remotely like what you claim 'must' be the case. You know what the problems are that people here are concerned with -- or you could know if you would stop to read and comprehend it. Insofar as it concerns property it means the personal property that belongs to each of us as individuals, not some bizarre claim to own the whole country. This is more of your rationalism, this time in the form of "rationalism by intimidation". The 'how dare you have the temerity to call Harry Binswanger a rationalist' ploy is unbelievable. You have reached a new low.

I explicitly stated that Harry Binswanger´s idea is not true *because* he said it. But you are in fact implying that Harry Binswanger is advocating "hogwash" when he says that restricitons on immigration are based on a collectivist premise.

And I am not too lazy or cowardly to argue with you. I have been arguing with you for ages. So I am not informing you of the fact that my idea about immigration is not my own, but comes from Harry Binswanger, because I want to evade he necessity of presenting you with arguments.

Maybe you can ask Harry Binswanger himself whether he really said what I am saying he said about the immigration question. You can email him at this adress - hblist@hblist.com . I am not certain about whether Harry takes questions from Objectivists who are not subscribers to his HB List. But if you explain to him the reason that you are asking (that you have been in a debate about immigration with me, and I have claimed that my idea comes from him) I bet that he will answer you, since his own reputation is indirectly involved. And you can name my name in your email to Harry. He will recognize my name. And if I am putting words in his mouth, he will roundly condemn me for doing that. A piece of advice, emw - if you send an email to Harry Binswanger, be more polite to him than you have been to me lately.

As for me having reached "a new low". In other posts, you *smear* me by repeating the baseless claim that I advocate *both* anarchism and social democracy. Now *that* is low!

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What if a large percentage of those who sneak into this country tend to be pro-socialist? Is being against that the same as being pro-socialist?

His rationalism is filled with contradictions and arbitrary assertions. Posing obvious rhetorical questions or stating outright the nature of different aspects of this has had no impact on his responses. His responses, when he acknowledges what has been said at all, typically ignore the point, pick up on one part of a sentence, and continue to rationalize from there. He has remained mostly oblivious to statements made in response to him, continuing to wander off into the rationalist wilderness rather than acknowledging or addressing them. Whether or not he can tell the difference, the nature of his responses is what it is.

I maintain that I *have* presented you with rational aruments. I think that it is *you* who is placing his emotions before facts, emw. You simply to not *want* to admit that you are wrong.

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Whatever Harry Binswanger did or did not say, somewhere else, in some other context, and which is not published for us to look at, you have no business claiming it applies to anything that anyone here actually believes or has said. You have no credibility for objectively reporting what anyone else has said about anything at all, let alone any business trying to pull a stunt like that. No on has argued anything remotely like what you claim 'must' be the case. You know what the problems are that people here are concerned with -- or you could know if you would stop to read and comprehend it. Insofar as it concerns property it means the personal property that belongs to each of us as individuals, not some bizarre claim to own the whole country. This is more of your rationalism, this time in the form of "rationalism by intimidation". The 'how dare you have the temerity to call Harry Binswanger a rationalist' ploy is unbelievable. You have reached a new low.

Betsy, are you there? Emw seems to doubt that the idea which I have been advocating here, that restriction of immigration is based on the collectivist premise that "the Americans own America", that "the Swedes own Sweden" and so forth is not my own idea, but an idea which Harry Binswanger presented on the HB List about two years ago.

You are yourself an HBLer, Betsy. Do you remember Harry´s post on the immigration question, which I have been citing here? If you could confirm that I am not bulls-ting emw, that would be valuable.

Now, emw, can argue that even if Harry advocated the same view as I do, at least Harry must have argued for that view with better, "less rationalistic" arguments than I have done here. But as far as I can recall, Harry used essentially the same arguments which I have used - that the idea that the people of a nation have a right to decide who gets to live in that nation, is based on the patently collectivistic idea that the citizens of a nation own that nation together, i.e. collectively.

So if emw is saying that *this particular* argument of mine for free immigration is "rationalistic hogwash", then emw is saying that Harry Binswanger uses arguments that are "rationalistic hogwash".

Incidentally, I do not think that I can be the only person here who is aware of the fact that Harry Binswanger most emphatically supports free immigration. In fact, Harry has recently advocated that illegal immigrants in the USA should be given amnesty. Harry has stated that he thinks that many or most (I do not recall which) of the immigrants are *heroes*, and that due to self-selection immigrants are more likely to be pro-freedom than people born in modern America.

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Whatever Harry Binswanger did or did not say, somewhere else, in some other context, and which is not published for us to look at, you have no business claiming it applies to anything that anyone here actually believes or has said. You have no credibility for objectively reporting what anyone else has said about anything at all, let alone any business trying to pull a stunt like that. No on has argued anything remotely like what you claim 'must' be the case. You know what the problems are that people here are concerned with -- or you could know if you would stop to read and comprehend it. Insofar as it concerns property it means the personal property that belongs to each of us as individuals, not some bizarre claim to own the whole country. This is more of your rationalism, this time in the form of "rationalism by intimidation". The 'how dare you have the temerity to call Harry Binswanger a rationalist' ploy is unbelievable. You have reached a new low.

Betsy, are you there? Emw seems to doubt that the idea which I have been advocating here, that restriction of immigration is based on the collectivist premise that "the Americans own America", that "the Swedes own Sweden" and so forth is not my own idea, but an idea which Harry Binswanger presented on the HB List about two years ago.

You are yourself an HBLer, Betsy. Do you remember Harry´s post on the immigration question, which I have been citing here? If you could confirm that I am not bulls-ting emw, that would be valuable.

Now, emw, can argue that even if Harry advocated the same view as I do, at least Harry must have argued for that view with better, "less rationalistic" arguments than I have done here. But as far as I can recall, Harry used essentially the same arguments which I have used - that the idea that the people of a nation have a right to decide who gets to live in that nation, is based on the patently collectivistic idea that the citizens of a nation own that nation together, i.e. collectively.

So if emw is saying that *this particular* argument of mine for free immigration is "rationalistic hogwash", then emw is saying that Harry Binswanger uses arguments that are "rationalistic hogwash".

Incidentally, I do not think that I can be the only person here who is aware of the fact that Harry Binswanger most emphatically supports free immigration. In fact, Harry has recently advocated that illegal immigrants in the USA should be given amnesty. Harry has stated that he thinks that many or most (I do not recall which) of the immigrants are *heroes*, and that due to self-selection immigrants are more likely to be pro-freedom than people born in modern America.

The reasons for rejecting your arguments have been given in detail. None of this wandering about with appeals to someone else's alleged positions or arguments that are not available is relevant. Your own statements purporting to address what has been said here stand for all to see. Where you claim to have gotten them from and how you filtered them are not relevant. Claiming that it is only a less well written version of something else unavailable, and in another context, that is to be regarded as authority, while you plead for someone else to confirm your claims, is a pitiful way to avoid addressing specific statements that have been made to you.

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The reasons for rejecting your arguments have been given in detail. None of this wandering about with appeals to someone else's alleged positions or arguments that are not available is relevant. Your own statements purporting to address what has been said here stand for all to see. Where you claim to have gotten them from and how you filtered them are not relevant. Claiming that it is only a less well written version of something else unavailable, and in another context, that is to be regarded as authority, while you plead for someone else to confirm your claims, is a pitiful way to avoid addressing specific statements that have been made to you.

It is not that I am afraid to "stand on my own mind" so to speak. But I have tried arguing with you, and you shrug my arguments off. So I tried pointing out to you that you are not only saying that I am spouting "rationalistic hogwash", but that in that case so is Harry Binswanger. I thought that that might at least make you check your premises. And I have not been distorting Harry´s arguments. I have given you his arguments very much in the same form as he gave them on HBL.

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Whatever Harry Binswanger did or did not say, somewhere else, in some other context, and which is not published for us to look at, you have no business claiming it applies to anything that anyone here actually believes or has said. You have no credibility for objectively reporting what anyone else has said about anything at all, let alone any business trying to pull a stunt like that. No on has argued anything remotely like what you claim 'must' be the case. You know what the problems are that people here are concerned with -- or you could know if you would stop to read and comprehend it. Insofar as it concerns property it means the personal property that belongs to each of us as individuals, not some bizarre claim to own the whole country. This is more of your rationalism, this time in the form of "rationalism by intimidation". The 'how dare you have the temerity to call Harry Binswanger a rationalist' ploy is unbelievable. You have reached a new low.

Betsy, are you there? Emw seems to doubt that the idea which I have been advocating here, that restriction of immigration is based on the collectivist premise that "the Americans own America", that "the Swedes own Sweden" and so forth is not my own idea, but an idea which Harry Binswanger presented on the HB List about two years ago.

Harry never said that all opposition to unrestricted immigration was based on collectivist premises.

Harry did mention -- and debunk -- the "the Americans own America" argument on the grounds that it was collectivist, but nowhere did he claim that it was the only argument or reason people objected to unrestricted immigration. He acknowledged and dealt with other objections as well.

Now, emw, can argue that even if Harry advocated the same view as I do, at least Harry must have argued for that view with better, "less rationalistic" arguments than I have done here. But as far as I can recall, Harry used essentially the same arguments which I have used - that the idea that the people of a nation have a right to decide who gets to live in that nation, is based on the patently collectivistic idea that the citizens of a nation own that nation together, i.e. collectively.

Nobody here on THE FORUM has been making the "the Americans own America" argument. Primarily, they have been arguing that the individual rights of individual Americans are being violated by foreign nationals who are trespassing on their property, kidnapping, and killing them and that such criminals should be stopped.

Don't you agree?

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Harry never said that all opposition to unrestricted immigration was based on collectivist premises.

Harry did mention -- and debunk -- the "the Americans own America" argument on the grounds that it was collectivist, but nowhere did he claim that it was the only argument or reason people objected to unrestricted immigration. He acknowledged and dealt with other objections as well.

Now, emw, can argue that even if Harry advocated the same view as I do, at least Harry must have argued for that view with better, "less rationalistic" arguments than I have done here. But as far as I can recall, Harry used essentially the same arguments which I have used - that the idea that the people of a nation have a right to decide who gets to live in that nation, is based on the patently collectivistic idea that the citizens of a nation own that nation together, i.e. collectively.

Nobody here on THE FORUM has been making the "the Americans own America" argument. Primarily, they have been arguing that the individual rights of individual Americans are being violated by foreign nationals who are trespassing on their property, kidnapping, and killing them and that such criminals should be stopped.

Don't you agree?

OK, Harry Binswanger did not say that *all* advocacy ot restrictions on immigration was based on a collectivist premise. And I agree that the American government has to protect the individual rights of the American citizens. But attempting to protect Americans´ rights by means of restricting immigration is *inherently* collectivistic.

For the sake of argument, let´s grant emw´s premise that many of the Latino immigrants nurse a desire to violate American citizens´ individual rights. How can the government restrict the immigration of Latinos without preventing *innocent* Latinos from immigrating to the US, as well as the ones who wish to violate Americans´ rights? The border police can, to be sure, *ask* the Latinos to tell them if they nurse any desire to violate Americans´ rights, and turn away those who answer - "Yes." But then, of course, those immigrants who do want to violate Americans´ rights can simply lie and say that they do not.

So if the government is going to restrict the immigration of Latinos at all, it will have to turn away Latinos who do *not* nurse any desire to violate Americans´ rights, as well as Latinos who do. And is that not collectivistic? Discriminating against all the members of a group, merely because *some* of the members of the group are bad?

Restriciting the immigration of Latinos because *many* Latinos are socialists who intend to vote Americans into slavery, is exactly analogous to not letting any blacks be hired by the police force because of the fact that the crime statistics show that a larger fraction of black men than of whites commit felonies, and that black men therefore *might* make less reliable cops.

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Nobody here on THE FORUM has been making the "the Americans own America" argument. Primarily, they have been arguing that the individual rights of individual Americans are being violated by foreign nationals who are trespassing on their property, kidnapping, and killing them and that such criminals should be stopped.

Don't you agree?

Well, the "Americans own America" premise is implicit in *any* restriction of immigration by the American government (leaving aside the blocking of the immigration of criminals, men with contagious diseases and psychotics). Because whenever the government restricts immigration, it is saying that the government has a right to decide who gets to live on the American territory. And since the government is an agent of the American people, that means that the American people have a right to decide who gets to live on the American territory. And a property right is the right to the use and disposal. So if the American people, collectively by voting, decide who gets to live on the American territory, that means that the American people, collectively, *own* the American territory! Which is collectivism (socialism actually).

So you see, Betsy, even though nobody here has *explicitly* argued that "Americans own America", *everybody* who advocates restrictions on immigration presupposes this premise. The only *possible* exception to this would be someone who says - "I am opposed to restrictions on immigration in principle. But this is an emergency, so we must dispense with our principles!" But, of course, an Objectivist should be just as ashamed for being a pragmatist as for being a collectivist.

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OK, Harry Binswanger did not say that *all* advocacy ot restrictions on immigration was based on a collectivist premise. And I agree that the American government has to protect the individual rights of the American citizens. But attempting to protect Americans´ rights by means of restricting immigration is *inherently* collectivistic.

WHY??

For the sake of argument, let´s grant emw´s premise that many of the Latino immigrants nurse a desire to violate American citizens´ individual rights.

Where did he say that? (That you may infer he was really saying that doesn't count.)

How can the government restrict the immigration of Latinos without preventing *innocent* Latinos from immigrating to the US, as well as the ones who wish to violate Americans´ rights?

Easy. The only restrictions would be that, as opponents of unrestricted immigration posting here have already said, that someone has to enter at an approved entry point, not be a criminal or diseased, and not need welfare. In addition, there would be added conditions for citizenship and voting such as residency for a certain period, knowledge of American history and the Constitution, etc.

Restriciting the immigration of Latinos because *many* Latinos are socialists who intend to vote Americans into slavery, is exactly analogous to not letting any blacks be hired by the police force because of the fact that the crime statistics show that a larger fraction of black men than of whites commit felonies, and that black men therefore *might* make less reliable cops.

Nobody is arguing any such thing.

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Nobody here on THE FORUM has been making the "the Americans own America" argument.

That has been pointed out to him several times. He insists that it must be a "premise", even though it is rejected, while ignoring the actual arguments.

Primarily, they have been arguing that the individual rights of individual Americans are being violated by foreign nationals who are trespassing on their property, kidnapping, and killing them and that such criminals should be stopped.

One cannot have an immigration policy screening out criminals, the insane, welfare seekers, etc., when they are permitted to bypass the screening process in the name of a "right". That is how he promotes anarchy. In addition there is the problem of granting citizenship, with full voting rights, to people who are not required to show they understand, and who will not subvert, the American political system (as legitimate immigrants routinely do, often with good understanding before coming at all). It is on this issue in addition to the problem of unfiltered welfare seekers, etc. that he advocates social democracy in practice while claiming to oppose it on principle.

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