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Hans-Hermann Hoppe - On Free Immigration and Forced Integration
Migration policies become predictably different, once the government is publicly owned. The ruler no longer owns the country's capital value, but only has current use of it. He cannot sell or bequeath his position as ruler; he is merely a temporary caretaker. Moreover, "free entry" into the position of a caretaker government exists. Anyone can, in principle, become the ruler of the country.
Democracies as they came into existence on a world-wide scale after World War I offer historical examples of public government.
What are a democracy's migration policies? Once again assuming no more than self-interest (maximizing monetary and psychic income: money and power), democratic rulers tend to maximize current income, which they can appropriate privately, at the expense of capital values, which they cannot appropriate privately. Hence, in accordance with democracy's inherent egalitarianism of one-man-one-vote, they tend to pursue a distinctly egalitarian -- non-discriminatory -- emigration and immigration policy.
As far as emigration policy is concerned, this implies that for a democratic ruler it makes little, if any, difference whether productive or unproductive people, geniuses or bums leave the country. They have all one equal vote. In fact, democratic rulers might well be more concerned about the loss of a bum than that of a productive genius. While the loss of the latter would obviously lower the capital value of the country and loss of the former might actually increase it, a democratic ruler does not own the country. In the short run, which most interests a democratic ruler, the bum, voting most likely in favor of egalitarian measures, might be more valuable than the productive genius who, as egalitarianism's prime victim, will more likely vote against the democratic ruler. For the same reason, a democratic ruler, quite unlike a king, undertakes little to actively expell those people whose presence within the country constitutes a negative externality (human trash, which drives individual property values down). In fact, such negative externalities -- unproductive parasites, bums, and criminals -- are likely to be his most reliable supporters.
As far as immigration policies are concerned, the incentives and disincentives are likewise distorted, and the results are equally perverse. For a democratic ruler, it also matters little whether bums or geniuses, below or above-average civilized and productive people immigrate into the country. Nor is he much concerned about the distinction between temporary workers (owners of work permits) and permanent, property owning immigrants (naturalized citizens). In fact, bums and unproductive people may well be preferable as residents and citizens, because they cause more so-called "social" problem," and democratic rulers thrive on the existence of such problems. Moreover, bums and inferior people will likely support his egalitarian policies, whereas geniuses and superior people will not. The result of this policy of non-discrimination is forced integration: the forcing of masses of inferior immigrants onto domestic property owners who, if they could have decided for themselves, would have sharply discriminated and chosen very different neighbors for themselves. Thus, the United States immigration laws of 1965, as the best available example of democracy at work, eliminated all formerly existing "quality" concerns and the explicit preference for European immigrants and replaced it with a policy of almost complete non-discrimination (multi-culturalism).
Indeed, though rarely noticed, the immigration policy of a democracy is the mirror image of its policy toward internal population movements: toward the voluntary association and dissociation, segregation and desegregation, and the physical distancing and approximating of various private property owners. Like a king, a democratic ruler will promote spatial over-integration by over-producing the "public good" of roads. However, for a democratic ruler, unlike a king, it will not be sufficient that everyone can move next door to anyone else on government roads. Concerned about his current income and power rather than capital values and constrained by egalitarian sentiments, a democratic ruler will tend to go even further. Through non-discrimination laws -- one cannot discriminate against Germans, Jews, Blacks, Catholics, Hindus, homosexuals, etc. -- the government will want to open even the physical access and entrance to everyone's property to everyone else. Thus, it is hardly surprising that the so-called "Civil Rights" legislation in the United States, which outlawed domestic discrimination on the basis of color, race, national origin, religion, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, etc., and which thereby actually mandated forced integration, coincided with the adoption of a non-discriminatory immigration policy; i.e., mandated inter-national desegregagtion (forced integration).
Hans-Hermann Hoppe's views about immigration, which do not cast libertarianism as requiring open borders, have been controversial within the wider libertarian movement. Walter Block offered arguments against Hoppe's immigration position in a 1999 article, "A Libertarian Case for Free Immigration."
Hoppe has countered his opponents by commenting on their opinions in footnote 23 to Natural Order, the State, and the Immigration Problem (PDF):A second motive for the open border enthusiasm among contemporary left-libertarians is their egalitarianism. They were initially drawn to libertarianism as juveniles because of its "antiauthoritarianism" (trust no authority) and seeming "tolerance," in particular toward "alternative" ― non-bourgeois ― lifestyles. As adults, they have been arrested in this phase of mental development. They express special "sensitivity" in every manner of discrimination and are not inhibited in using the power of the central state to impose non-discrimination or "civil rights" statutes on society. Consequently, by prohibiting other property owners from discrimination as they see fit, they are allowed to live at others' expense. They can indulge in their "alternative" lifestyle without having to pay the "normal" price for such conduct, i.e., discrimination and exclusion. To legitimize this course of action, they insist that one lifestyle is as good and acceptable as another. This leads first to multiculturalism, then to cultural relativism, and finally to "open borders."