Wednesday, 20 June 2018

QotD: "I know nothing more odious than to prevent a man from emigrating from his country..."


"Observe ... that if it is just and useful to allow every man to dispose of his labour, it is equally so—and for the same reasons—to allow him to choose his residence. The one is a consequence of the other. I know nothing more odious than to prevent a man from emigrating from his country, who is there so wretched as to wish to quit it, in spite of all the sentiments of nature and the whole force of habits that bind him to it. It is moreover absurd..."~ Antoine Louis Claude Destutt de Tracy, from his 1817 Treatise on Volition
[Hat tip Stuart Hayashi]
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5 comments:

  1. The sucker can leave whenever he likes but he can not cross into new sovereign borders unless that country allows him to. We have had all this before PC, You are so far out on the libertarian branch it is beginning to look thoughtless. The only exception could be things be evidenced and real danger to his life, and even there people like the idiot Iain Lees-Galloway sees no reason to do anything about White farmers in SA. He prefers diversity criminals.

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    1. "The sucker can leave whenever he likes but he can not cross into new sovereign borders unless that country allows him to."

      This leaves him two options: the open ocean or staying put. TO say "You can leave, you just can't go anywhere" is an obvious contradiction in terms.

      I'm not entirely adverse to this sentiments. Obviously a country has a right to keep out those who intend to intend to violate the rights of others, and such proxies as criminal records can be justifiably used to assess that potential. But I see no reason to restrict the movements of hard working, honest people.

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  2. This was feasible 200 years ago when the quote was written. It's sure as hell not relevant in the 21st century when people can move to desirable countries much faster than infrastructure can keep up.

    And that's assuming they all have skills/qualifications and can speak English.

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    1. Funny--profit-driven companies like farms and construction outfits seem to find employment for these folks. I worked on construction sites in the Southwest for 5 years, and saw a LOT of such people.

      If people were allowed to make their own economic choices, infrastructure could keep up. What's holding us back is the overwhelming regulatory burden.

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    2. They find employment for SOME of them under CURRENT immigration laws.

      Now imagine if libertarians had their way; would jobs suddenly appear for the enormous horde of unskilled illiterates? Would all the extra roads, buildings magically appear to meet the demand? That's a total fantasy.

      For an even more obvious example, consider what would happen to NZ under such a policy. We'd turn into Calcutta 2.0 in no time.

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