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Immigration, forced integration & property rights

November 16, 2011

In the excerpted piece below, author, professor and secessionist Hans-Hermann Hoppe tackles perhaps the biggest issue of our time: immigration and the displacement (and ultimately replacement) of Western peoples and First World populations in general by Third World immigrants. Dr Hoppe argues in his book Democracy – The God that Failed that such immigration is incompatible with a regime of liberty and property-rights and ultimately will destroy the advanced civilisations that permit it.  His take on immigration puts him at odds with many Left-libertarians (the folks at the Cato Institute, for example) who support open borders and mass immigration and seem to care little about preserving the native ethnic and cultural groups of West or the property rights of those in First World countries who oppose immigration. The piece below is excerpted from pages 158-59 and 168-69 of Hoppe’s book:

Dr Hans-Hermann Hoppe, philosopher, economist, author and dean of the Austrian free-market school of economics.

According to the proponents of unconditional free immigration, the United States qua high-wage area would invariably benefit from free immigration; hence, it should enact a policy of open borders, regardless of present conditions, i.e., even if the United States were entangled in protectionism and domestic welfare. Surely, such a proposal must strike a reasonable person as fantastic. Assume that the United States, or better still Switzerland, declared that there would no longer be any border controls, that anyone who could pay the far might enter the country, and, as a resident, would then be entitled to every “normal” domestic welfare provision. Is there any doubt about the disastrous outcome of such an experiment in the present world? The United States, and even faster Switzerland, already weakened by protectionism and welfare, would be overrun by millions of third-world immigrants. Welfare costs would quickly skyrocket, and the strangled economy would disintegrate and collapse, as the subsistence fund – the stock of capital accumulated in and inherited from the past (fathers and forefathers) – was plundered. Civilization would vanish from the United States and Switzerland, just as it once did from Greece and Rome….

Judged by the immigration policy entailed by the object of protecting one’s own citizens from foreign invasion and forced integration and rendering all international population movements invited and contractual migrations, the Swiss government does a significantly better job than the United States. It is relatively more difficult to enter Switzerland as an uninvited person, and it is more difficult to to stay on as an uninvited alien. In particular is is far more difficult for a foreigner to acquire citizenship, and the legal distinction between resident citizens and resident aliens is more clearly preserved. These differences notwithstanding, the governments of both Switzerland and the U.S. are pursuing immigration policies that must be deemed far too permissive.

Moreover, the excessive permissiveness of their immigration policies and the resulting exposure of the Swiss and American population to forced integration by foreigners is further aggravated by the fact that the extent of public property in both countries (and other high-wage areas) is substantial; that tax-funded welfare provisions are high and growing and foreigners are not excluded; and that contrary to official pronouncements even the adherence to free trade policies is anything but perfect. Accordingly, in Switzerland, the U.S. and most other high-wage areas, popular protests against immigration policies have grown increasingly louder.


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  • Harold Crews

    Additionally it must be kept in mind that anarchism and even limited government are only possible when there is a common culture for the resolution of disputes. A large diverse population will require government.

  • Sebastian

    I consider Dr. Hoppe to be one of the greatest Thinkers of our time. It is probably only after his death that people will recognize. As always. However, if you haven’t read his book “Democracy – The God that failed” I highly recommend it. When I read it the first time, I remember I was baffled by his bold statements (e.g. he views Democracy as a descent of civilization) but also the underlying logic. It is fascinating to follow his train of thought and I feel he was the one opening my eyes on subjects like state and society.

    As Dr. Hoppe says: “Freiheit statt Demokratie!” (Freedom instead of Democracy!)

  • George Hunsicker

    He sort of reminds me of another Austrian, can’t remember the name but the ideas sound quite similiar. He didn’t like democracy either, had something much better for his people.

  • Sebastian

    Murray Rothbard, by chance?

  • Michael

    George, Dr Hoppe is a German. But he is a scholar of the Austrian school of economics. The largest Austrian school think-tank is the Ludwig von Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama. Dr Hoppe does not oppose democracy because he wants to impose dictatorial power upon people. He opposes democracy because he wants more liberty and more property rights for people. He opposes democracy because he wants more freedom.

  • George Hunsicker

    I understand that, but one must be very careful of those that want to replace democracy. Remember, absolute power corrupts absolutely. Shared power with its checks and balances is much better, prevents dictators.

  • Michael

    George, one of the biggest problem with democracy is the lack of checks on power. You’re right that power corrupts. Democracy is essentially mob rule. It’s the will of the majority of the people. Property is never secure because there is always the potential that the majority may be turned against you. One’s property rights are never safe because the majority can always impose conditions upon your ownership of the property. Wars under democracy are far worse too, since they are fought “as a people” with no distinction between the foreign military it is fighting and the people of that country. WWI and WWII were the ultimate expression of democratic warfare. Hitler, Stalin, Roosevelt, Mussolini and Churchill all claimed popular support for their rule. Hitler especially appealed to the mob, and he was truly a man of the streets and crowds. He was democratically put in power and the “checks” on democracy were democratically eliminated.

    Contrast the horrors of the democratic century with the liberty and stability of a regime of property rights and self-ownership.

  • George Hunsicker

    And this regime was?

  • Rose

    Unimpeded immigration is unraveling the fabric of civilization as we know it in America. All anyone needs to do is take a long, hard look at what has happened in Europe, with countries like Britain and Ireland hardly resembling the countries they once were. I used to want to visit both of those countries since my ancestry is so tied to them. But I realized that the Ireland & Britain of old are no longer there & if I visited now it would be more like visiting third world nations. So I’d rather travel to places in America before what seems to be the inevitable happens here too.

    There is nothing wrong with wanting to hold on to American culture. To want to live in neighborhoods of people that are like you. Forced integration is wrong. Being the good Rebel that I am, forced ANYTHING is against everything I hold dear. Just like the Confederate States of America being forced to stay part of a country that it did not care to be a part of. And when the Confederacy was forced into submission & yanked back into an unwelcome union, the U.S. government heaped even more punishment through the ugliness of Reconstruction.

    There are some of us who are not only against illegal aliens being allowed to remain a drain on our system, we also believe the U.S. should reduce immigration to zero until the country gets its debt under control & we get back on our collective feet. How can America, in good conscience, allow more people to come in when jobs are scarce & we are drowning in debt?!

    Let’s say I own a big home on a couple of acres. I have plenty of room for my family & occasional guests. We have worked hard & saved a few bucks for rainy days. Well, things haven’t been well for my friend Ellen (her deadbeat husband abuses her & their son; they are desperate for a better life). She knows how great I have it. One day Ellen shows up uninvited at my door with her son, Mike & their meager belongings. Out of the kindness of my heart, I let Ellen have the spare bedroom; Mike settled into the den. Since Ellen & Mike are broke, my family & I share everything we have with them. Ellen has very little skills & finds a minimum-wage, part-time job nearby that doesn’t come even close to paying for her & her son’s share of the living expenses. Although Ellen is trying, my family must drastically cut corners out of necessity.

    One day, my cousin Lisa shows up with her daughter Lena. Lisa had fled her life in the city after running up her credit cards & getting evicted. She was living out of an old travel trailer while making her way to my place (she’d heard how kind I was to open my home to Ellen & hoped for the same). Although I felt sorry for Lisa & Lena, I had no room for them, nor could I afford the extra expenses (my finances were already strained). But I told her she could park the travel trailer on the property for a few weeks.

    Months later, Lisa & Lena are still here. So are Ellen & Mike. They feel entitled to eat our food, use our bathrooms & have their friends over at all hours of the day & night. Lisa is involved in some kind of religious cult & is having cult gatherings in the field behind my shop. I told her if she’s living on my property, she has to respect my way of living. But she insists on living her own lifestyle. I’ve asked her to leave but she refuses & the authorities are siding with her. They claim she has rights! What of MY rights? My once quiet, peaceful haven is now a crowded, noisy place. My own kids are learning all kinds of unhealthy behaviors. Worse yet, Lisa & Lena boast about how “great the city was” & deride country living, saying we are ignorant & pathetic country people. My family & I are about ready to move out to save our own sanity & the minds/futures of the kids. I’m wondering how the hell this happened. I don’t even know where we could go, or how to get there or even how to afford it because my “rainy day” savings is now depleted. I ran into my neighbors Martha & Bob at the gas station the other day & they had the same haggard, worried look as me. The same thing was going on at their place.

    Citizens need to wake up. This is happening in neighborhoods across America. Will we continue down this path until the day comes where WE want to move out? Thank you for this timely article! I appreciate Mr. Hoppes’ views.


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