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Tag Archives: immigration

When you start infringing on people’s rights, you start a vicious circle where you need to infringe on more and more rights as time goes by, to try to make your infringements possible. Take immigration for instance. 

Nowadays, immigration is limited. You need a country’s approval to go there. This is a very serious limitation on one of the most important freedoms there is: the one to move around as you damn well please. For millennia, there was no limiting that. But in recent decades, it has become near universal practice to limit immigration. Why is that?

You see, the post-war world has come up with one of the most massive non-sustainable rights infringements there is: social security. Ok, it’s all fine and dandy to have this nice idea to help out people in need, but the catch is that somebody has to pay for that. So to make it work, governments infringe on the property rights of their citizens. Indeed, to try to make it work, governments tax the hell out of their citizens.

The problem is, social security becomes attractive for people from less well-off countries. Before social security, they would immigrate when there were job opportunities, therefore contributing to society’s well-being – a win-win situation. But with social security, they also have an incentive to immigrate even when there aren’t any job opportunities, if social security can provide them with a better standard of living than their own country.

This puts an even higher burden on public finances, as financing the scam that is social security becomes harder.

So, to avoid making the unsustainability of social security too obvious too soon, governments limit immigration. And this is an unacceptable limitation of people’s liberty of movement.

As an aside

Another line of reasoning holds that immigration is a problem for cultural reasons, with integration/assimilation being the tough part. While that might have some truth, the fact is that when triggered by (real) economic opportunity, integration/assimilation quickly follows immigration – just look at the history of the US or 60’s immigration in Europe.

Cultural problems only ensue when immigration is spurred by social security incentives without real economic opportunity. In that case, the fatal mix of massive immigration without the integrating factor of working alongside locals creates cultural ghettos and associated problems.

Hence, without the social security incentives, immigration would mechanically lower, and integration/assimilation would be much easier.

In a nutshell

Infringing the people’s property rights to support the scam that is social security leads to infringing people’s freedom of movement. This is a universal trend – infringement of basic rights leads to ever more infringements. Hence why basic rights shouldn’t be messed with. Unfortunately, that message seems lost on politicians…