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Consistency: It’s Too Much To Ask

I don’t believe I’ve ever posted to this blog on the subject of immigration. "Illegal" is just a sneer with no basis in reality, which should give you some clue as to my position on the issue.

In short, the goodness of the individual is all that matters, and really, that’s assuming I give any credence to borders, which I generally don’t. If you want to abstract out the essentials of that which is in essence America, it’s most certainly not the landmass. It’s an idea–more precisely, an ideal–and it includes anyone–individuals anywhere–of the American mind.

That’s why this is just pure crap (read my comments).

Those conservatives or libertarians who get it right on the gun control issue (morally, practically, or both) ought to take one second to consider the consistency of the underlying principles of their arguments when they spew forth about "illegal" immigration. There’s not an ounce of difference in the argument on any level.

And don’t talk to me about scale. A small group of guys who choose to do evil with guns in a public place can do one hell of a lot of damage in a hurry. And that’s not to mention extending the principle (which libertarians, at least, are quite capable of) to the purchase of fertilizer and diesel fuel.

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More

9 Comments

  1. John Lopez on April 25, 2005 at 23:15

    "Those conservatives or libertarians who get it right on the gun control issue (morally, practically, or both) ought to take one second to consider the consistency of the underlying principles…"

    Consistency of principles is the electoral equivalent of sucking a bullet out of a gun, and the Q&O'ers know it.

    Which is why you're getting stonewalled, there: the vast majority of people will never notice the disconnect or care if they did, which is good for McQuain and his cohorts in their quest to attract voters.

    The problem for them is, all the best people *will* notice.

  2. Whymrhymer on April 27, 2005 at 09:30

    Richard,

    Just thought I'd speak MY mind in response to your thoughts on this issue.

    * America is much, much more than just an "idea" or "ideal," it's a real place with borders, customs and culture. Patriotism (another concept, unless I'm misreading you, you seem to sneer at) is *one of those core ideas* that make-up America.

    * "The goodness of the individual" while always a consideration, is a secondary consideration if that person breached our borders illegally. Illegal immigrants (and I use the word illegal with no apologies) who don't pay taxes (probably about half) are taxing our hospitals, schools and city governments *and it's not their fault,* it's our government's fault for allowing them to use our hospitals, schools and government handouts. And, while I agree that we can't stop all the determined terrorists from coming here — perhaps we can stop most of them. What harm is done by *wishing to avoid* a terrorist attack?

    * The concept of a person with an "American mind" in Uganda or Iraq is utterly laughable — they live in *their* societies and interact with *their* fellow citizens and governments. Neither they or we live *totally* in our minds, we live in our societies, interacting with others in those societies.

    Consistency may indeed be too much to ask if you're asking people to abandon the real world for the life of the mind.

    Before I close, let me say I consider most of the concepts you present in this blog to be as close to religion as I get — and I do consider rational thinking and common sense to be my religion — but America, in my mind, can never be brushed aside as a state of mind.

  3. Richard Nikoley on April 27, 2005 at 10:40

    Whymrhymer, no, I'm very patriotic–but to the idea, the ideal, the culture. I'm patriotic to the essence of what America is. And what I'm most partriotic about is that America is not about real-estate, as virtually every other country on Earth is. America is an idea. That's its fundamental power.

    Sorry, but I'm not a collectivist. You have no right to force me to pay for your values. I would certainly not–not in a thousand years–ever compel you or anyone, anywhere, to pay for my values. And, so, the tax and entitlement argument against "illegal" immigration is a non-sequitur. There ought not exist the moral evil of taxation (not a penny, for any reason, ever), as it's simply robbery and there's no way in the world to morally justify it on any grounds whatsoever.

    If your values are so great (and I don't doubt that most of them are fabulous and wonderful), then you and those of like mind ought to have no trouble pitching in yourselves and persuading others of like mind to do so as well.

    Taxation is only "necessary" to the extent that people desire and are willing to live in the fantasy that everyone can pay for everyone else, and that such a scheme doesn't entail a net loss.

    American minds in Uganda and Iraq? Certainly. Again, that's the fundamental power of America. That's it's strength that no other nation has ever come close to. Those are the people we ought to want in our communities. And in point of fact, I will surely be more welcoming of a good American from Uganda who want to get about his business immediately and not hassle with the state of his "legal" status.

  4. Whymrhymer on April 27, 2005 at 20:04

    Richard,

    Just on the subject of taxation, I'm intrigued and really want to understand your argument.

    You say:"There ought not exist the moral evil of taxation (not a penny, for any reason, ever), as it's simply robbery and there's no way in the world to morally justify it on any grounds whatsoever."

    How then does the infrastructure of the U.S function or does the central government go away?

    John,

    "There's nothing wrong with violating evil laws."

    I guess I'm not on the same mental planet as you and Richard. What is evil about immigration law? Are you (and Richard) saying that the world should be one giant community without borders? On one level, I really like that concept but, given the nature of man (and I still say Plato was closer than Aristotle on that) it seems impractical.

  5. John Lopez on April 27, 2005 at 19:23

    Whymrhymer:

    ""The goodness of the individual" while always a consideration, is a secondary consideration if that person breached our borders illegally. "

    Why secondary? There's nothing wrong with violating evil laws.

  6. John Lopez on April 27, 2005 at 22:00

    Whymrhymer:
    "What is evil about immigration law?"

    It requires attacking peaceful people.

    "Are you (and Richard) saying that the world should be one giant community without borders?"

    Not at all. I'm merely against *government* borders.

  7. Richard Nikoley on April 28, 2005 at 08:45

    Whymrhymer:

    Well, if all I had was $1000 for evertime someone in Internet political debate over the last 10+ years said "I'm intrigued and really want to understand your argument," I'd be a very, very poor man. So, thanks for that, at last.

    Now, regarding the question:

    "How then does the infrastructure of the U.S function or does the central government go away?"

    I don't know. I care (that we have society, community, culture, etc.), but I don't know how we have a "government" (using the term loosly), such as it is, without taxation at gunpoint, as we do now.

    I do know that taxation is robbery. I do know that there is no rational justification for a govermnent to possess rights and privileges that individuals do not possess. You or I can not walk down the street and hold up our neighbors at gunpoint to make them pay for what we deem to "need." If we can't that, then there's no argument in the world that grants government a moral santion to do that.

    Long about 2 or 3 years into my libertarian adventure, which began in 1990 (former conservative 'R'), I stopped trying to construct utopias and determine just how the world would function without taxes and central govenment.

    I don't need to. I leave that to the business of the individuals concerned. Where I'm concerned, I make my own way, or I leave it to other individuals who've earned and whom I've granted certain limited authorities. I take every available measure to avoid dealing with any branch of government (fed, state, local) at all times.

    The difference between me and most people is that I recognize that 99% of my dealings and interractions are anarchist, i.e., without any hint of involvment by the state.

  8. Whymrhymer on April 28, 2005 at 19:54

    Thank you for that excellent explaination of "where you're at;" I guess I'm so firmly entrenched in my own "conventional" worldview it's hard for me to imagine others'.

    I do, however, definately understand what you're saying and agree, on a basic level. I guess I've always seen taxation as the price you pay for the conveniences of roads, utilities, security, etc., etc. If that price isn't paid, we're back in the Wild West or perhaps farther back than that. Our current system of taxation clearly sucks but at least alternatives are under discussion. (Hey! I'm trying to be optimistic here — stop snickering! ;-))

  9. Richard Nikoley on April 29, 2005 at 13:17

    Whymrhymer, indeed, "taxation is the price [we] pay." You know what else? I'm not claiming the price is too high. Hell, for all I know, life might be more expensive without the coercive power of the state.

    All those things aren't mere conveniences, and that's really where your argument breaks down. They are absolute necessities for a modern civilization. As such, I'm not too worried that they wouldn't exist without taxation. Given their necessary nature, people would just have to find alternate ways of paying the bill. Don't know what those alternative arrangements would be, don't care. All I know is that I'd gladly pay for what I use or benefit from, and the gladly part comes from knowing I have alternatives and free choices.

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