REPRISE: Immigration and the Statue of Bigotry - Busting Immigration Myths

Peter Cresswell's picture
Submitted by Peter Cresswell on Wed, 2007-06-06 01:23

At the foot of the Statue of Liberty, a gift from nineteenth-century France to nineteenth-century America, Emma Lazarus's poem The New Colossus sums up what the statue symbolised for the immigrants who helped build America:

. . . From her beacon-hand Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

That lamp is in the process of being snuffed out by people who today can find no two words to better describe those huddled masses yearning to breathe free than "illegal immigrant."

They seek to turn Lazarus's Colossus of Liberty into something else, something more evocatively described by Lou Reed than by Emma Lazarus:
Give me your hungry, your tired your poor I'll piss on 'em
That's what the Statue of Bigotry says
Your poor huddled masses, let's club 'em to death
and get it over with and just dump 'em on the boulevard...

Both in NZ and in the US immigration proposals now on the table look to snuff out that lamp uplifted beside the golden door, and to piss upon those poor huddled masses. But as former Fox commentator (and now President Bush's press secretary) Tony Snow says,

Immigration is not the pox neo-Know Nothings make it out to be

... Before someone razes Lady Liberty and decides to erect a wall to "protect" America from the world, shouldn't we at least spend a little time trying to get our facts straight?

Yes. We should. I suspect however that those of you more inclined to favour the Statue of Bigotry approach will already be putting on their eye-patches and heading for that comments button. Meanwhile, the rest of us can consider some of those facts, and begin trying to get them straight.

Fortunately, most of the facts and arguments thereon have been summarised in a series of articles in the [then] current Reason magazine (right) -- "Reason's guide to reality-based reform" -- and in the latest Free Radical magazine (left). The list of articles is at the foot of the age, with the main arguments summarised in this list of convenient myth-busters. I suggest you look at them with more than one eye:

  • Immigrants aren't flocking to the States to mooch off the government.
  • 'Illegals' are not milking the government; if anything it is the other way around. The National Research Council found for example that most immigrant families "contribute an average of $80,000 more to federal coffers than they consume over their lifetimes."
  • Immigrants generally earn more than they receive.
  • More than 60% of illegals -- illegals -- pay income tax, and two-thirds kick in to Social Security (even if they do often get nothing back).
  • Immigrants help sustain economic growth and cultural dynamism.
  • Even economists who favour restrictive immigration policies admit low-skilled immigrants are a net plus to the economy.
  • "Government intervention into the economic system breeds later intervention. Here the application of his principle is, start with the Welfare State, end with the Police State. A police state is what is required effectively to stop substantial illegal immigration that has become a major burden because of the Welfare State." - George Reisman
  • Immigrants "are generally less involved in crime than similarly situated groups," and crime rates in border towns "are lower than those of comparable non-border cities."
  • Crime rates in the highest-immigration states have been trending significanty downward.
  • There's no reason that the North American Free Trade Agreement (or NZ's own free trade agreements) shouldn't apply equally to people as they do to widgets.
  • Unemployment is low and crime is down everywhere, especially in places teeming with immigrants.
  • Google, Yahoo! and Sun Microsystems were all founded by immigrants.
  • Immigrants are more likely than 'natives' to be self-employed.
  • "Sometimes what looks like lousy conditions to us are the best option an employee has... But sometimes the only reason those conditions are the least bad choice is available is because the other possibilities have been cut off by legal fiat. I'm referring not just to illegal immigrants, who for obvious reasons have little recourse if defrauded or enslaved, but to guest workers, who come here under strict rules that prevent them from changing jobs, let alone striking out on their own." - Jesse Walker. [Take note Phillip Field bashers]
  • Immigrants tend to create their own work -- when they're allowed to.
  • The power and reach of Spanish-language media in L.A. for example shows supply of productive people creating its own demand.
  • Immigrant labour makes work easier for all of us, and brings new skills to the table.
  • Immigrants and low-skilled American workers fill very different roles in the economy.
  • Immigrant labour makes all businesses easier to start, thus spurring 'native' creativity.
  • "Some argue that we should employ a more restrictive policy that allows in only immigrants with 'needed' skills. But this assumes the government can read economic tea leaves." - Tyler Cowen and Daniel M. Rothschild
  • New arrivals, by producing more goods and services, keep prices down across the economy -- the net gain to US from immigration is about $7 billion a year.
  • Even in the halls of Congress, economic arguments against immigration are losing their aura of truthfulness, so pro-enforcement types are focussing on national security.
  • "The only way to actually prevent terrorists from slipping in is to legalize as much 'illegal immigration' as possible. If one is looking for a needle in a haystack, as the saying goes, one has a hell of job. Finding that needle on a relatively clean floor, however, presents an achievable goal." - James Valliant
  • Immigration is good for the immigrants themselves.

ARTICLES:

How about a little common sense on immigration - Tony Snow
Immigration plus Welfare State equals Police State - George Reisman
Immigration and the Welfare State - the real root of the problem - Brian Doherty
Who's milking who? - illegal aliens pay more in taxes than they impose in costs - Shikha Dalmia
Don't bad-mouth unskilled immigrants - Tyler Cowen & Daniel M. Rothschild
Exploitation or expulsion - illegal immigrants in a double bind - Jesse Walker
Fighting terrorism requires legalizing immigration - James Valliant
Worse than a wall - Kerry Howley
A legacy of the unforeseen - Carolyn Lochhead
Breathe free, huddled masses - Cathy Young
Open the borders - why should citizens of NAFTA countries need visas at all - Tim Cavanagh
Bush's border bravado - non-militarized solutions to a non-problem - Nick Gillespie
Open immigration, Si! Open borders, No! - Sixth Column

And of course there are the two classic Harry Binswanger articles which are 'must-reads' for the moral and practical case behind open immigration (note, open immigration, not open borders.):

The solution to 'illegal immigration' - Harry Binswanger
Immigration Quotas vs. Individual Rights: The Moral and Practical Case for Open Immigration - Harry Binswanger

There. That should give you plenty of weekend reading. And if you'd rather read all this in print form, then head here or to Borders to buy a single copy of Reason, and head to any good newsagent (or here for a single PDF copy) for The Free Radical.

LINKS: bThe New Colossus (1883) - US Department of State
Is the NZ Immigration review repressive - Katie Small, Scoop (May, 2006)

FOR MORE ON THESE SUBJECTS: Immigration, Politics-US, Economics, Politics-NZ


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"Then let free people,

atlascott's picture

"Then let free people, domestic AND FORIGN, cross free boarders peacefully as of their right! Peaceful people.."

Free people? Peaceful people?  As judged by whom, and how?  Blank out.

Whose rights must be protected? "All man's rights, without circimstantial exception."

So that includes felons?  The diseased? Enemies of State?

"All man's rights, without circimstantial exception."

Protected by whom? Blank out.

Dong! Cu-koo! Dong! Cu-koo!

[Begin fake quote] "But what you aren't getting mates, is that men have rights and those rights must be protected and we have to protect these rights and all rights must be protected, of all men always, but there have to be rights, and rights are what men have and they have rights and the rights have to be protected..."[End fake quote]

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

The right to carte blanche?

Rick Giles's picture

You must essentially open them wide and allow anyone and everyone to cross freely and unchecked, regardless of any context. To do otherwise would be a violation of their rights.

I can see how that would be anarchism. But please tell me how man's rights give him such carte blanch to do whatever he pleases, unchecked and regardless on context?

Surely your conception of man's rights enable one to initiate involuntary transactions- such as landing an army at Christchurch Airport to shoot some women and children and then catching a connecting flight home to Afghanistan with your duty-free shopping. But don't project this misconception on to me. That's crazy.

It seems you are plying a variation of the "It's not freedom unless I'm free to punch people in the street, therefore liberty needs to be fettered" argument.

I figure that because

Richard Wiig's picture

You are indeed an anarchist.

How do you figure that?

If there is such a thing as the "right to freedom of movement" that must be "universally recognised", then, just as you have no right to screen your own citizens, you have no right to screen anyone at the borders. You must essentially open them wide and allow anyone and everyone to cross freely and unchecked, regardless of any context. To do otherwise would be a violation of their rights.

Declaration of....what was it now??

Rick Giles's picture

Well there you go. Rick has the right to go where he pleases, because it's his God given inalienable right. Galts Gulch is another country, and Rick has every right to enter it, because it's his right.

Hey! You're learning!

You are indeed an anarchist.

How do you figure that?

Hang on a minuite mate, were you being sarcastic just now?

It is not because one is an "alien" that anyone is to be rejected.

Then let free people, domestic AND FORIGN, cross free boarders peacefully as of their right!

Peaceful people have that right and it follows that you do not have the right to stop them.

You do not have to sell them a seat on your airplane, or a mooring at your warf, or a place to stand on your property. But get the hell out of the way of those who choose to so transact for it is their trade to make!

You want the Trojan Horse allowed in as of right even knowing what it contains.

How do you figure that? What are these baseless allegations? Freedom to cross boarders peacefully implies no such right. As that is what I have insisted upon it's for you to show how man's rights represent anarchistic suicide, Classical style.

Where there are rights they must be protected fully
Whose rights must be protected fully,

All man's rights, without circimstantial exception.

and why?

In the words of another, because we are endowed with them by our Creator.

And by whom?

It is for such purposes that governments are instituted among men.

Ringing any bells here? At all....?

The above is a "blank out" statement

Looks like I called you on that one, sidewinder.

Altruism

Richard Wiig's picture

Where there are rights they must be protected fully

Whose rights must be protected fully, and why? And by whom? The above is a "blank out" statement.

Trojan horse

Richard Wiig's picture

I don't see the denying of anyones rights because they are "alien",

Let's count how many times you do it in this post...

#1 There is no automatic right to just enter another country,

Of course there is!

Well there you go. Rick has the right to go where he pleases, because it's his God given inalienable right. Galts Gulch is another country, and Rick has every right to enter it, because it's his right. You are indeed an anarchist.

Oh, unless one is an alien??

And not just an anarchist, but a dishonest one. It is not because one is an "alien" that anyone is to be rejected. Hell, everyone who wasn't born there is an alien. It is enemies who are intent on actively engaging in bringing the country to its knees who are to be rejected. The Trojan Horse was allowed in because no one knew what it contained, but if they knew, it would never have been allowed in. You want the Trojan Horse allowed in as of right even knowing what it contains. How that's going to defend your freedom I do not know.

Do explain this conflict

Rick Giles's picture

What bent picture of rights do you have to suppose a felon has rights and then to say they are not rights to be protected? Where there are no rights there are none to protect; Where there are rights they must be protected fully.
So your position is that a felon is not a human being? Who as rights as a human beng, some of which are forfeit by committing a felony?

Tell you what, you answer my question and I'll think about answering yours.

It doesnt have a moral imperatve to invade other countries to ensure the rights of all men at the expensive of its citizens resources.
In what way does this represent a failure to uphold the rights of man, Scott? You must say.
I "must" say nothing.
I was giving examples as to why you are wrong.

If you want to make an example of it you must say. You're the only one who percieves a conflict of rights here.

I bloody well will then. Not to repeat what PC has posted about though
this is hardly the full and complete understanding you promised.

Duh! I haven't started writing it yet.

I just said I will do it and I just said what it will be and what it will not be. What's not to get about that?
When I post it you wont be able to miss it.

Okay, if you want to play semantics...

atlascott's picture

"What bent picture of rights do you have to suppose a felon has rights and then to say they are not rights to be protected? Where there are no rights there are none to protect; Where there are rights they must be protected fully."

So your position is that a felon is not a human being?  Who as rights as a human beng, some of which are forfeit by committing a felony?

"" A free society defends and upholds the rights of all men."
No, it doesn't. It doesnt have a moral imperatve to invade other countries to ensure the rights of all men at the expensive of its citizens resources.

In what way does this represent a failure to uphold the rights of man, Scott? You must say."

I "must" say nothing.  YOU are the one to posit, in blanket fashion, that " A free society defends and upholds the rights of all men."  I was giving examples as to why you are wrong.

Can't have it both ways, mate.  Either " A free society defends and upholds the rights of all men." or it doesn't.  Don't take out your angry about your imprecision on me.

Leaving aside for a moment that you have never defined what you mean by a Free Society, or whether the US is one, or whether your hypothetical Free Society can exist in a world where there are unfree societies...

...now, see, you just bloody promised to explain somethng to me, and it appears that the sum of said explanation s this:

"Not to repeat what PC has posted about though, or your failure to grasp it, but to say what men's rights are not! That is, how our (by which I mean MANKIND, Scott) rights protect us from harm and do not permit us to harm others."

No offense meant, Rick, but this is hardly the full and complete  understanding you promised.  The non-initiation of force principle?  Um, okay. 

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

Scott

Rick Giles's picture

" A free society defends and upholds the rights of all men."
No, it doesn't. It doesnt have a moral imperatve to invade other countries to ensure the rights of all men at the expensive of its citizens resources.

In what way does this represent a failure to uphold the rights of man, Scott? You must say.

Just like it doesnt have to prtect the rgrights of a felon, who s incarcerated and may lose his right to vote.

Just like WHAT?

What bent picture of rights do you have to suppose a felon has rights and then to say they are not rights to be protected? Where there are no rights there are none to protect; Where there are rights they must be protected fully.

Just like it doesnt have to uphold the same rights for a citizen nd a non-citizen.

Just like WHAT?

The same rights are the same rights! Let's face it, your only differentia here is that one rights holder is a national and the other one is an alien!

Prove it. You seem to espouse anarchism, but then go on about a government protecting rights. This ought to be interesting.

I bloody well will then. Not to repeat what PC has posted about though, or your failure to grasp it, but to say what men's rights are not! That is, how our (by which I mean MANKIND, Scott) rights protect us from harm and do not permit us to harm others.

"#1 There is no automatic

atlascott's picture

"#1 There is no automatic right to just enter another country,

Of course there is!
Oh, unless one is an alien??

#2 another country, which afterall, is other peoples property,

Of course it's not!
Free society is for everyone. Oh, unless one is an alien?"

Sounds like an anarchist who doesn't believe in property rights, to me.

" A free society defends and upholds the rights of all men."

No, it doesn't.  It doesnt have a moral imperatve to invade other countries to ensure the  rights of all men at the expensive of its citizens resources.  Just like it doesnt have to prtect the rgrights of a felon, who s incarcerated and may lose his right to vote.  Just like it doesnt have to uphold the same rights for a citizen nd a non-citizen.  Just like it doesn't have to treat a hostile enemy nation like one of its States.

"Happens that I have perfectly full and clear views about where and when a man's right to participate in society starts and stops."

Prove it.  You seem to espouse anarchism, but then go on about a government protecting rights.  This ought to be interesting.  After all, maybe your full and clear views will teach me something and then you get to "win" and Richard will renounce his ways as well.  Of course, our discusion is not about "when a man's right to participate in society starts" but I am willing, once again, to forgive your changing the discussion and mischaracterzing, again, since you have teased us all so with your "full and clear views"--which ought to be interesting since I've haven't seen an evidence of them so far.

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

Richard

Rick Giles's picture

I don't see the denying of anyones rights because they are "alien",

Let's count how many times you do it in this post...

#1 There is no automatic right to just enter another country,

Of course there is!
Oh, unless one is an alien??

#2 another country, which afterall, is other peoples property,

Of course it's not!
Free society is for everyone. Oh, unless one is an alien?

There is nothing wrong with setting rational conditions for entry which may change at times according to the context of the times.

Rational? Well why don't you try that instead?

#3 It must be rational conditions that are in accord with upholding and defending the rights of the citizens who pay for the government.

Bullshit.
A free society defends and upholds the rights of all men. It doesn't exclude alien nationals, doesn't exclude non-citizens, doesn't exclude non-taxpayers from their unalienable rights!

I see your stance, Rick, as nothing more than a rejection of all standards and conditions.

Happens that I have perfectly full and clear views about where and when a man's right to participate in society starts and stops. These views are not on the table, yours are. I have confined myself to defending the ordinary conception of man's rights as in the Declaration of Independence, which by their liberty cause you anxiety enough.

Do you see my point now,

atlascott's picture

Do you see my point now, Richard?  This is not an honest guy with a real point. 

You assessment of him is correct.  He's clearly an anarchist, on this point, anyway.  I wish he'd just say so and leave the name calling out of it.  You know, like make a clear and cogent point.  You are also correct i noting his interesting misrepresentaton habit.  That's a respectful way of saying he is a liar.

He simply answers "None" to the question "What moral basis does a government have to impede immigration?" because he sees freedom of movement as an inalienabe right and cannot seem to understand that either you respect property rights, and have a system established to do so, OR, you can adopt his native-American-esque "no one owns the land" position.  Or maybe he holds the Muslim "all lands are owned by Allah" position--it is hard to tell, because he'll never write anything clearly, because at some point in the past, he has evidently learned what happens when he shares his positions openly--he is torn apart.

Richard, I think you show a generous nature by giving hm the benefit of the doubt as you do, but I suspect at this point, it is wasted effort.

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

Rick quotes, and

atlascott's picture

Rick quotes, and writes:

"{{{Scott's rejection of this inalienable right on the grounds that one is an alien (in the old perlance.)

I don't think Scott rejects it on the grounds that one is an alien. I have never seen him say this, so I really don't know where you get that from.

No worries mate. My memory starts where your thinking ends....

a nation, which is simply an aggregate of households forming an extended family of people who have agreed to some basic standards of living, and a single household.

The idea that a person's rights qua man somehow entitle a person to go where he will, use what he will, and demand these things is a profound misunderstanding of property rights and the nature of freedom.}}}"

What poor Ricky doesnt understand is that quoting a bunch of material that does not support your point simply demonstrates good cut and pasting skill, not clear or correct thinking.  The above somehow is supposed to establish my supposed "rejection of this inalienable right on the grounds that one is an alien."  Well, I have said explicitly that I do not dney anyone's rights qua man, but Rick either chooses to ignore that, or purposely evades it.

Even though he cannot think in a straight line, this is the closest we have been in seeing either Rick's purposeful dishonesty or utter lunacy.

Exhibt B comes in Ricky's obviously-factually-false "But not all people. Because if this alienation of rights weren't enough, your next bigotry is to exclude Muslims. Not because they're plague-ridden, not because they're homocidal. Indeed, they are not."

Ha ha ha. Good one! No, its precisely because they are homicidal by ideology, and demonstrte their fidelity to their ideology.  The internet is rife with examples of Muslim violence, and if you took the time to learn something, you'd discover that they are taught that it is their highest purpose and God's will to wage jihad.

Rick continues:  "Therefore, you MUST award rights to newcommers somewhere in your conception or you forfiet your entire population"

Astute, indeed, old boy!  So show me where either Richard or myself has ever held any different?  No?  I didnt not think you could, but it is always better to ask, no?  In an almost laughable evasion, I addressed this issue explicity previously, as Richard has, and again, Rick ignores it.

If nothing else, Rick has shown himself to be a master name caller and straw man wielder.  But do such technique serve truth or obfuscation?  Those on this list may judge for themselves.

And before I again leave to pursue more important endeavors, my man, let me finally address this "Rights are not in conflict with rights" issue. Ricky, my man, ask yourself whether this is a truism, or whether the above, which you will not stop bleating about, is a complete statement or whether it is mising anything for it to be a truism.  And also, please consider that almost no one who uses the term "rights" has a clear understanding of a what a right is.

Toodles, you anarchist!

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

Not the same reading

Richard Wiig's picture

No worries mate. My memory starts where your thinking ends....

a nation, which is simply an aggregate of households forming an extended family of people who have agreed to some basic standards of living, and a single household.

The idea that a person's rights qua man somehow entitle a person to go where he will, use what he will, and demand these things is a profound misunderstanding of property rights and the nature of freedom.

And I do believe you've said the same yourself, Richard.

I don't see the denying of anyones rights because they are "alien", and it's unfair of you to suggest so. I see the expression of a desire to uphold standards. There is no automatic right to just enter another country, which afterall, is other peoples property, than there is any automatic right to enter another persons house. There is nothing wrong with setting rational conditions for entry which may change at times according to the context of the times. It must be rational conditions that are in accord with upholding and defending the rights of the citizens who pay for the government. I see your stance, Rick, as nothing more than a rejection of all standards and conditions. You're actually trying to thwart government from upholding its proper function.

Duncan

Richard Wiig's picture

I think he is arguing against your mischaracterisation of Muslims as terrorists -

Meaning "all muslims are terrorists"? Please point out where anyone has done that. There has been no such mischaracterisation. Why do you, and others, keep reading it that way?

and there is simply no other way to read your argument above,

Then please point out what makes you think that.

for you are defending a restriction on Muslim immigration by citing the fact that some Muslim immigrants are terrorists.

No, I am defending it on the basis that Islam is at war with us and it's a necessary step in an adequate self-defence. The situation isn't a case of a few criminal elements among the Muslim fraternity who need to be hunted down and tried, it's a case of a whole movement being at war with us. It ought to be treated as such.

I might be wrong, but I

Duncan Bayne's picture

I might be wrong, but I don't think Rick is arguing against a prohibition on the immigration of terrorists. 

I think he is arguing against your mischaracterisation of Muslims as terrorists - and there is simply no other way to read your argument above, for you are defending a restriction on Muslim immigration by citing the fact that some Muslim immigrants are terrorists.

 

---
Buy and wear InfidelGear - 100% of all InfidelGear profit goes to SOLO!

Scotty doesn't know

Rick Giles's picture

Scott's rejection of this inalienable right on the grounds that one is an alien (in the old perlance.)
I don't think Scott rejects it on the grounds that one is an alien. I have never seen him say this, so I really don't know where you get that from.

No worries mate. My memory starts where your thinking ends....

a nation, which is simply an aggregate of households forming an extended family of people who have agreed to some basic standards of living, and a single household.

The idea that a person's rights qua man somehow entitle a person to go where he will, use what he will, and demand these things is a profound misunderstanding of property rights and the nature of freedom.

And I do believe you've said the same yourself, Richard.

You've got this nationalistic view of rights. A free country is percieved as some kind of club house (family home?) where entry is limited to some vague and paradoxical notion of 'those who were here yesterday'. Of course in America, as in all lands, the subtration of yesterday's demonstrates reductio ad absurdum. Therefore, you MUST award rights to newcommers somewhere in your conception or you forfiet your entire population. This self-evident absurdity is upheld anyway, but only because it is the single veil you have for your stark naked...

P.S. It's nice to see that the "racism" and "bigot" charges seem to have ceased.

Only because I've had a very busy week.

So, anyway, you let some people into your free society (your club house) as if they had no rights and no claim on liberty (until you you let 'em.) But not all people. Because if this alienation of rights weren't enough, your next bigotry is to exclude Muslims. Not because they're plague-ridden, not because they're homocidal. Indeed, they are not. It's because they're Muslims, that's all. This is religious intolerance, this is ethnic prejudice. This is you, Wiig.

IF you are aware that terrorists are entering your country; then
Your allowance of them doing so is a protection of their "right" of freedom of movement;
Which sacrifices your right to be free from the initiation of force; and

Still talking crazy talk, Scotty.
Scotty doesn't know that rights are not in conflict with rights. At least he's putting quotation marks in there now, I call that a win!

Here it is

atlascott's picture

IF you are aware of a criminal element entering your country; and
 
IF you are aware that terrorists are entering your country; then

Your allowance of them doing so is a protection of their "right" of freedom of movement;

Which sacrifices your right to be free from the initiation of force; and

Which means the government is giving preference to the rights of non-citizens

To the detriment of its citizens.

It also costs tax dollars to chase and jail the criminals, and under the current immigration policies, we do not even deport them.

The Amnesty bill which was just defeated in the Senate REMOVED provisions which would have deported illegal aliens already here who were felons.  Thank goodness it was defeated, even though it will bring a tear to Rick's eye.

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

As I've said before...

atlascott's picture

...Rick is not worth engaging on this issue, Richard.  You will never get a straight answer out of him, and he likes to turn everything into debate on side issues. Whenever you get too close to an actual resolution, he insinuates that it is racism, bigotry, etc.  If he really loves reason logic, truth, and honesty, I have seen little evidence of it.

He is an anarchist who believes in no government involvement at all.  You are morally suspect if you do anything to prevent a stranger from raping your daughter, in a ludicrous juxtaposition of any sense whatsoever, because you/your government are infringing this supremely important right of freedom of movement--evidently, you have to guarantee a stranger's freedom of movement in derogation of your rights.  You don't need to be an Objectivist to understand how dangerous an idea anarchism is in the current context.

Part of the problem we have with immigration is that we are living in an increasingly socialist/statist place.  Another is that it has been demonstrated that actual criminals and terrorists are coming and have come into this country through our pourous southern border and have killed actual people, and plannned and have begun to carry out actual terrorist actions.  It's insanity to accept the proposition that it is a superior moral imperative to throw open the doors wider than they are and legitimize illegal and criminal terrorist immigrants than to close the border, and have the government perform its proper duty-secure the nation against threats foreign and domestic.

And, Bill, you can call it racism or bigotry for a nation to pass laws which prohibit felons from coming over, or laws which prohibit the diseased, etc., but I think it makes alot of rational sense. 

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

Bill

Richard Wiig's picture

What exactly are you unsure of here (in regards to immigration restrictions)

There are good arguments to made that muslims are a dangerous demographic in today's context and should be banned from entering infidel lands until such time as the Islamic Jihad is defeated and globally discouraged. But I will concede that this is open for debate.

The efficacy, the morality, or the extent and nature of the threat?

I don't think Scott rejects

Richard Wiig's picture

I don't think Scott rejects it on the grounds that one is an alien. I have never seen him say this, so I really don't know where you get that from.

Exactly, Bill.

Richard Wiig's picture

The one legitimate area of debate here, IMO, is the national defense angle.

And that is why there are no racists and bigots here. I haven't seen anyone suggesting people should be exempted for their race, or the color of their skin, or because of an aversion to curry breath. In fact, before 9/11, Islam and Muslim was hardly on anyones breath, bar a knowledgeable few. But Islams war against us has changed all that.

P.S. It's nice to see that the "racism" and "bigot" charges seem to have ceased.

Objectivism & Immigration

Bill Visconti's picture

As I understand it, Objectivism advocates free and open immigration with the government acting to prevent criminals, those with contagious diseases, and those who are enemies or potential enemies from entering the country. And that's it. If a person is not in one of those three classes, then they are free to go and come as they please.

Understand that there was no significant immigration restriction in the 19th century. It is in the early 20th century that immigration controls arise. And why do they arise? For two fundamental reasons: 1) Xenophobia 2) Economic protectionism (the earliest cases of the immigration craze were seen in laws excluding the Chinese because they "took jobs away from Americans"). That's right, the foundation of today's immigration obsession was racism/nationalism and socialism/welfare-statism. That's immigration in a nutshell. Its a socialist quota system with collectivist justifications. And is it any wonder why today's conservatives are so anti-immigration? (Another reason to hate the conservatives - with the proviso that you always hate the liberals just a little bit more.)

The one legitimate area of debate here, IMO, is the national defense angle. This includes the question of just how dangerous are muslims and how should the immigration of muslims be handled. There are good arguments to made that muslims are a dangerous demographic in today's context and should be banned from entering infidel lands until such time as the Islamic Jihad is defeated and globally discouraged. But I will concede that this is open for debate. Immigration restriction for any other reason (other than the reasons I already mentioned) is pure colectivism.

Proud Member Of The "Bomb-Them-Into-Oblivion" School Of Foreign Policy

stop covering for them

Rick Giles's picture

The context is the issue of the right to freedom of movement. The exclamation is Scott's rejection of this inalienable right on the grounds that one is an alien (in the old perlance.)

To object to liberties which Scott himself identifies as rights on the grounds that they expend his own......THAT is altruism confirmed, not rejected.

But I'd like to hear it from the horse.

A rejection of altruism

Richard Wiig's picture

No Duty to ensure the rights of others or the comfort, employment, happiness, freedom of movement, or anything else at the expense of my own.

This conception of rights posits that they are in conflict with one another

It doesn't in the slightest. It's really just a rejection of altruism. You drop the context in which Scott makes his comment.

Those who spit on them

Rick Giles's picture

I never said otherwise.

Then what 'correction' did you think you were making?

a threat. Those who spit on them are.

Well that doesn't take us very far from Scott's comment.

No Duty to ensure the rights of others or the comfort, employment, happiness, freedom of movement, or anything else at the expense of my own.

This conception of rights posits that they are in conflict with one another. It's as if Scott has been convinced that respecting rights in others comes at the expense of his own. Unwilling to bare this, he concludes the non-existence of rights in such others.

Whereas, in reality, rights are not in conflict at all. Nothing can be ethical and unethical at the same time and in the same way.

Likewise, all rights have complimentary duties. My right to justice is your duty not to treat me unjustly, for example. This creates conflict only for those who believe they've the right to be unjust.

Therefore, contra Scott, we do have a duty- in civilised society- to respect the rights of man in all men. These rights are inalienable.

To be sure, one can forfiet these rights through individual actions. Yet to your way of thinking, and Scotts, those who have made it into civilisation have no inalienable rights of man to forfiet in the first place. They are made sub-human.

I never said otherwise.

Richard Wiig's picture

but the natural fact of mans rights isn't a threat. Those who spit on them are.

Application, not a correction

Rick Giles's picture

The non-contradictory nature of man's rights are a natural fact, dear Richard. Consciousness is neither desired nor required- what is, is.

Correction

Richard Wiig's picture

There are no conflicts between those who respect mens rights.

then

Rick Giles's picture

Then you'll be delighted to know, Scott, that there are no conflicts between men's rights.

Don't you agree?

No Duty to ensure the rights of others...

atlascott's picture

or the comfort, employment, happiness, freedom of movement, or anything else at the expense of my own.

That's it.

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

Finding it hard to be libertarian?

Rick Giles's picture

Only in emergency situations
should collective discrimination or quotas be employed,

But, Jason, historically speaking, when aren't we? You Americans are almost always at war with someone or something, or under attack by someone or something. When, from the day of Tom Paine to now, has this not been so?

And it's a little naive to 'raise shields' at the flash point of such conflicts. The processes that cause these emergencies are ongoing. Those that need a boarder crossing will simply take advantage of the lull in security and defeat the purpose of your policy.

And this is war. It has been declared ...

Your equlibrium position therefore, gentlemen, must be perpetual flat-out denial of freedom of movement at all times.

Check your premises?

While this fatwa is in effect, no Muslim should be given the benefit of the doubt. They should be banned from entry and seriously monitored domestically.

What you've got to understand is that the war going on here is not going to be won by force of arms. Not nuclear bombs nor air drops nor toppling dictators nor political policy nor killing more women and children will answer the issue because this is a cultural war.

It's not the sword, but superstition that needs to be defeated. We need to reason, we need to talk, we need to let our superior culture be transmitted and be able to do its thing at street level.

Collectivising Muslims, isolating would-be transmitters of the West from free trade with them, putting all Muslims under surveillance is the direct antithesis of this. Such government intervention in the marketplace has the same effect as elsewhere- it distorts signals and denys us the prosperity of the unseen alternatives.

Instead of driving would-be converts to our side, such policies force militants and family-folk to run together. You swell the masses of our true enemy, Richard and Lindsay.

In war, the enemy should be treated as guilty till proven innocent.

How does one prove one's enemy to be innocent? It's a paradox, Lindsay.

The fact that you can't distinguish an al Qaeda piece of shit from other Muslims just by looking at them is, in the circumstances, their problem, not ours.

What amazing circumstances could these be? These must be pretty tall in order to justify the blind and the stupid in opening fire on anything they blindly and stupidly take for prey.

Not even Cheney's top-flight PR guys came up with that one!

Great Article Defending Free Immigration

Bill Visconti's picture

Here is a great article. One of the authors is a free market economist from George Mason University which has one of the better pro-capitalist economics departments in the US. Walter Williams teaches there.

Proud Member Of The "Bomb-Them-Into-Oblivion" School Of Foreign Policy

"Ayn Rand even made the

Aaron's picture

"Ayn Rand even made the statement once (although I don't know where exactly) that an American should support a tax rate of *80%* if it was for a war of survival."

Well, Rand did say: "In a fully free society, taxation—or, to be exact, payment for governmental services—would be voluntary. Since the proper services of a government—the police, the armed forces, the law
courts—are demonstrably needed by individual citizens and affect their interests directly, the citizens would (and should) be willing to pay for such services, as they pay for insurance." Her actually arguing for coercive taxation would be contradictory. If she said anything about 80% taxation I'm assuming she didn't mean that feeling threatened makes it right for you to rob 80% of everyone else's income, but just that as an individual you should be voluntarily willing to pay what it takes to defend yourself.

"Rand supported foreign aid to Israel."

I think you're looking for an Ayn Rand Letter from the mid-70s where she said Israel and Taiwan needed US assistance. Again, if she supported coercive taxation to do so that would be contradictory, but it would be a valid question if spending voluntary contributions to government on foreign aid might be effective and in the interest of our citizens.

"That would be because of

Fraser Stephen-Smith's picture

"That would be because of the likes of Fraser, who is more concerned that he doesn't cause offence, than getting to any nitty gritty."

Richard, I'm quite happy to cause offence. Getting to the nitty gritty is proving a challenge, I'll admit - because there has been so much written on these threads.

Just a few days ago the

Duncan Bayne's picture

Just a few days ago the government wiped the competence-in-the-English language requirement for any immigrant bringing in more than twenty million dollars. That was aimed at Americans. Smiling

And that just brought a much-needed grin to my face Smiling

 

---
Buy and wear InfidelGear - 100% of all InfidelGear profit goes to SOLO!

Bill ...

Lindsay Perigo's picture

There is some anti-immigration fervour in NZ but it's not decisive. The country has benefited enormously these past few years from Asian immigration, with a big influx of wealthy, entrepreneurial Asians. Aside from their atrocious driving they've been a boon. The problem immigrants are Pacific Islanders who are (or were) given priority status, get in and then go on welfare. Not all by any means. Some work their butts off and send money back home to poor relatives.

Just a few days ago the government wiped the competence-in-the-English language requirement for any immigrant bringing in more than twenty million dollars. That was aimed at Americans. Smiling

Linz

Screening

Lindsay Perigo's picture

Only in emergency situations (war, a massive terrorist attack, etc) should collective discrimination or quotas be employed, and these should be eliminated once it is believed that the emergency no longer exists.

And this is war. It has been declared ...

The ruling to kill the Americans and their allies--civilians and military--is an individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any country in which it is possible to do it ... (Osama, 1998)

and backed up by several major terrorist attacks. While this fatwa is in effect, no Muslim should be given the benefit of the doubt. They should be banned from entry and seriously monitored domestically. In war, the enemy should be treated as guilty till proven innocent. The fact that you can't distinguish an al Qaeda piece of shit from other Muslims just by looking at them is, in the circumstances, their problem, not ours.

CAIRO (AP) — Al-Qaeda in Iraq warned Pope Benedict XVI on Monday that its war against Christianity and the West will go on until Islam takes over the world, and Iran's supreme leader called for more protests over the pontiff's remarks on Islam. ...

Al-Qaeda in Iraq and its allies said Muslims would be victorious and addressed the pope as "the worshipper of the cross," saying "you and the West are doomed as you can see from the defeat in Iraq, Afghanistan, Chechnya and elsewhere. ... We will break up the cross, spill the liquor and impose the 'jizya' tax, then the only thing acceptable is a conversion (to Islam) or (being killed by) the sword." (AP, Set 19, 2006)

Fuck the fuckers!

Linz

Question for the Lands Down Under...

Bill Visconti's picture

In America, the Conservatives were up in arms over Bush's Amnesty Bill. They considered it a big betrayal. The Conservatives in this country are for the most part so anti-immigration that I sometimes joke that if they opposed socialism the way they oppose Mexican immigrants we would be living under full capitalism. My question for the Kiwis and the Ausies is if there is the same anti-immigrant fervor in New Zealand and Australia? Also, what it the essence of the anti-immigration arguments down under? Is it largely economic protectionism? Or traditionalism (ie to "preserve the Australian culture")? Or is it a subtle (or not-so-subtle) form of racism (ie keep the non-whites out)?

In America there are a number of arguments put forward against what is perceived as "out of control" immigration. Most of them are flawed. There are really only two legitimate arguments that I have seen: 1) that immigrants strain the welfare state and 2) that some immigrants pose a national security threat.

Regarding the welfare state, its tough to take the conservatives seriously when they argue this as they betray capitalism as a matter of principle in every way imaginable. The only time they care about welfare seems to be in relation to Mexican immigrants. How coincidental. The national security threat is the only arguement for immigration restriction that I agree with and I have voiced my views and my uncertainty regarding them here already.

So what's it like down under? Are all us Anglo-sphere English-speaking peoples (to borrow from Churchill) a bunch of racist xenophobes as the leftists keep telling us?

Proud Member Of The "Bomb-Them-Into-Oblivion" School Of Foreign Policy

Muslims against the Jihad

Jameson's picture

So you would ban Muslim immigration because Muslim immigrants constitute a threat to the existence (as a free country) of the USA. Where exactly do you set the bar?

Ban them all. Then exempt those who have generated successful leads to terrorist cells.

The estimated number of Muslims in the world is between 1.6 and 1.8 billion. The end of the Islamic Jihad will ultimately have to come from within – and could be ended swiftly if all the so-called moderates opened their eyes and mouths.

But they do not, and with their silence remain complicit in the Jihad.

Kenny, half a dozen “Moderate Muslim” organisations out of 1,600,000,000+ Muslims cannot, by any stretch, be considered a “majority”.

"He just recently even

Jason Quintana's picture

"He just recently even argued against screening, essentially saying that its a police-state tactic."

This depends on the nature of the screening and in what the applicant for admission into the country personally agrees to. If the process is setup purely to check whether a person has a criminal history or has advocated initiations of force in some way then it is perfectly reasonable because the person wishing to enter the country would be directly (or indirectly) pledging that he will not initiate force. And if this is the only pledge required of a would be resident and the only discriminations and barriers to entry being enforced by the government are on this basis then it is not a police state tactic. It would probably be preferable for the government to destroy any confidential information it has at the end of this process.

I also see nothing wrong with requiring a more thorough screening process for people from parts of the world that intelligence believes are more likely to produce a threat as long as :

a. The person is informed of and agrees to everything that will take place in this process.

b. The only factors for discrimination are those outlined above. Those relating to criminal activity and the advocacy of (or involvement in a conspiracy to commit)initiations of force.

Only in emergency situations (war, a massive terrorist attack, etc) should collective discrimination or quotas be employed, and these should be eliminated once it is believed that the emergency no longer exists. James Valliant's suggestion that immigrants should pay for this process is critical for keeping costs under control.

- Jason

Enemy Ideology

Bill Visconti's picture

"At what point does adherence to an ideology or religion make you so dangerous that you're considered an enemy of the state? Why does Islam, but not Marxism, make the bar?"

Actually, Marxism should have been considered a hostile enemy ideology as well. This gets into a really complicated issue (for me at least) of when does an ideology merrit consideration as a hostile threat against a free nation and when do adherents of that ideology warrant consideration as the enemy. Richard has put forward the argument that Islam and its muslim populations have crossed over into that territory already. I am very inclined to agree with him.

I have a feeling that things are still too peaceful in the US for public opinion to reach that level. But if America should ever come to experience the degree of Islamic agression that Israel experiences, I have a feeling that public opinion on Islam and muslims will change. I think that by that point Objectivists will see Islam as a hostile enemy ideology and muslims as an enemy population the way the Japanese or the Russians were enemy populations even though there were many good Japanese and Russian individuals. (Many Objectivists think this already.)

But Objectivists (at least most of them) understand that Japan and Russia were US enemies and that included all of their citizens. I think that is the way that Islam should and will come to be regarded. What makes it harder is that Islam is not located in any one nation in the way we think of "Imperial Japan" or "Communist Russia" or "Communist China". Islam is a nation without boundaries. This makes it all the more dangerous. What makes this worse is that America has not crushed its Islamic enemies overseas and has therefore emboldened the notion of Islamic Supremacy held by many muslims. Also, the multiculturalist hatred of the West by the West itself is the greatest recruitment tool for the Jihadists possible. They hate and kill us and we forgive them and condemn ourselves. How could we ever expect the Islamic world to respect us, by their standards or ours?

But as I say, I still have no firm conclusion about Islamic immigration, although I lean towards restriction.

Proud Member Of The "Bomb-Them-Into-Oblivion" School Of Foreign Policy

A joke, right?

Lindsay Perigo's picture

He just recently even argued against screening, essentially saying that its a police-state tactic.

That's about as dopey as the fatwa. What the hell are those guys on?!

And, if you accept that

Richard Wiig's picture

And, if you accept that being a Muslim automatically makes someone so dangerous that his entry into the country should be prohibited - surely that means we should be going around rounding up Muslims and shipping them out of the country?

It doesn't necessarily mean that at all. Restrictions should be commensurate with the threat, so it is the nature of the threat that determines the nature of the restrictions.

I mean, if they're such a danger we can't let them in, how can we allow them to stay?

If any muslims still in the country are a threat, then they ought to be deported. But again, there is no equilibrium one must keep for the sake of equilibrium. It's not about fairness. It's about defence against Jihad, and that requires taking whatever steps are necessary, not only to defend against, but also to defeat, Jihad.

At the point of 9/11

Richard Wiig's picture

At what point does adherence to an ideology or religion make you so dangerous that you're considered an enemy of the state?

Or in other words, at the point at which an organisation is engaging in deliberate murderous acts of war. There should be no question about this. No question at all.

Duncan

Bill Visconti's picture

Good questions. Really good.

I'm going to think about it first before I answer. There has been an ongoing discussion on immigration on HBL and Binswanger is a big open immigration advocate. He agrues to totally disband the INS and treat passage between the US and Mexico the same as passage between any two US states. He believes the US is drastically *underpopulated* and that he would have no problem if 100 million immigrants came to the US all at once (or thereabouts). He has really challanged the more restrictive immigration Objectivists. He just recently even argued against screening, essentially saying that its a police-state tactic.

So right now all I'm prepared to say is that my opinions on immigration are uncertain. I have what I would consider a rational fear of Islam and those that claim allegance to it. I see muslims as a potential enemy and I see that it is impossible to determine good muslim from bad. So as of this point in time I lean in the direction of muslim immigration restriction. If Islamic agression should increase then I could even see mass deportations. But I admit, I am having a hard time finding unassailable moral arguments in defense of either position and Binswanger's position has provided something for me to consider. So I look forward to the opinions of other SOLOists on this subject.

Proud Member Of The "Bomb-Them-Into-Oblivion" School Of Foreign Policy

That would allow the

Duncan Bayne's picture

That would allow the government to prohibit entry for criminals, those with infectous diseases and those who are enemies or potential enemies of the nation and its citizens. The last is where the regulation of muslim immigration would come into play.

So you would ban Muslim immigration because Muslim immigrants constitute a threat to the existence (as a free country) of the USA.  Where exactly do you set the bar?  At what point does adherence to an ideology or religion make you so dangerous that you're considered an enemy of the state?  Why does Islam, but not Marxism, make the bar?

And, if you accept that being a Muslim automatically makes someone so dangerous that his entry into the country should be prohibited - surely that means we should be going around rounding up Muslims and shipping them out of the country?  I mean, if they're such a danger we can't let them in, how can we allow them to stay?

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Those Fort Dix motherfuckers

Duncan Bayne's picture

Those Fort Dix motherfuckers get so far as making and copying a fucking training tape and none of these people in their "pray 5x/day" mosque had any idea these guys were illegal or involved in terrorist activities?  They didnt try to recruit any of these other mosque members?

Actually that's one thing I can understand.  Break it down, imagine that:

  • you are one of five men tasked with a vital mission
  • you are operating in a hostile country, with several intelligence agencies spending millions of dollars to hunt you down and kill (or sadly, imprison) you
  • any breach of operational security will have them at your door
  • if you survive the attentions of the hostile security & intelligence forces, any significant fuck-up is likely to have your own guys execute you if you ever see the light of day again

Me, personally, I'd be so tightly wound I wouldn't need a bed to sleep in, I could just prop myself against a wall.  I sure as hell wouldn't be letting anyone in on my plans, and I'd be going out of my way to portray myself as a bored moderate, who for some reason has bloodshot eyes and a nervous tic.

Don't misunderstand me - odds on, there would be at least a sizable minority of people at that mosque who'd support such a mission, if they knew about it.  Polls show that terrorists have strong support amongst supposedly moderate Muslims living in Western nations.  But I'd also bet good money that no-one at that mosque did know about it, unless in the capacity of a courier or handler.

---
Buy and wear InfidelGear - 100% of all InfidelGear profit goes to SOLO!

William and Bill...you guys hit the nail on the head.

atlascott's picture

Islam is not what we'd like it to be, it is not what Christianity is, it is not what Islamic subversives try to make us think it is.

It is a religion which mandates conquest and death and the death of individual freedoms.

Where are all the "moderate" Muslims (a non sequitur) denouncing violence?  The few hundred who denounce violence automatically have targets painted on them.  When a few members of one of these "moderate" mosques participate in the extremism that all of these alleged moderates do not care for, why arent any of these peace and reform Muslims coming forward?  Or reporting illegal resident Muslims to the authorities?  Those Fort Dix motherfuckers get so far as making and copying a fucking training tape and none of these people in their "pray 5x/day" mosque had any idea these guys were illegal or involved in terrorist activities?  They didnt try to recruit any of these other mosque members?  Come on.

Those who grant Islam moral equivalence to Christianity are making a mistake.

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

Muslim Immigration

Bill Visconti's picture

As an Objectivist, I am a proponent of open immigration rationally understood. That would allow the government to prohibit entry for criminals, those with infectous diseases and those who are enemies or potential enemies of the nation and its citizens. The last is where the regulation of muslim immigration would come into play.

At this point in my understanding of Objectivism, I lean towards severe restriction (if not outright prohibiton) of muslim immigration. I realize that goes counter to many Obectivists and probably many Objectivist intellectuals. For example, I seriously doubt that Harry Binswanger (who I greatly admire and nearly always agree with) would agree with the prohibition of muslim immigrants. But I feel that such prohibition will likely be required before all is said and done. Actually, I think that in the next generation or two as the war against Jihad really gets underway, the understanding of the general citizenry - including Objectivists - will come to include the total incompatibility of Islam with the West. How it will play out I don't know. But play out it will.

Proud Member Of The "Bomb-Them-Into-Oblivion" School Of Foreign Policy

Apostasy = Death

Bill Visconti's picture

First, understand that apostasy carries with it a death sentence in the Islamic world. Second, those muslims that try to argue that Islam does not embrace Jihad or that Islam is in fact peaceful are also threatened with death. There are many documented cases of this. Just look at the stories of Ayan Hirsi or Wafta Sultan as apostates who have been threatened with death.

More importantly, it is as Richard has argued, the moderate muslim organizations have no leg to stand on when trying to argue that Islam is peaceful. All a pious (which equals Jihadist) muslim has to do is point to the numerous sections in the Koran, the Hadith and in all the established texts of muslim scholars throughout the ages to show the opposite.

Islam has never had an Aquinas or a Calvin or a Luthor. Hell its never even had an Augustine! Islamic scholars throughout the ages have rejected all Hellenistic influence (allthough there were Islamic thinkers that attempted an integration of the two - they did not succeed). This is why Islam is what it is and why Christianity is what it is. For those on this forum that keep trying to compare modern Islam with modern Christianity please STOP!!! There are profound differences in their current states. Yes, all religion is nonsense and faith = force. But today's Islam is *all* faith whereas today's Christianity does have some pro-reason, Hellenistic (ie Aristotelian) elements to it. That makes a huge difference.

We simply do not have time in today's world of weapons of mass destruction to await the emergence of an Islamic Aquinas which would pave the way for a moderate Islam. ISLAM MUST BE MODERATED THROUGH THE DEVASTING USE OF FORCE!!! That means awe-inspiring war for you fucking pansies out there. And above all, it means to STOP MAKING FUCKING EXCUSES FOR OUR ISLAMIC FUCKING ENEMIES YOU SADDAMITE SONS OF BITCHES!!!!!

There, I feel much better now.

Proud Member Of The "Bomb-Them-Into-Oblivion" School Of Foreign Policy

Rand & Foreign Aid

Bill Visconti's picture

Rand supported foreign aid to Israel. I can't tell you exactly where she said it though. I believe it was in one of the Q&A's of her speeches just released for free at the ARI website. But she supported limited aid in the context of today's horribly corrupted foreign policy for the purposes of true self-defense; which supporting Israel is as Israel's enemies are our enemies.

Understand this Kenny, Rand was not a libertarian. She did not take the "non-initiation of physical force" principle as an intrinsic commandment. She understood it in its proper context. Ayn Rand even made the statement once (although I don't know where exactly) that an American should support a tax rate of *80%* if it was for a war of survival. So drop all libertarian notions with regards to Rand. She was no libertarian. In fact libertarianism seems to be a bastardization of her philosophy (as does Kelley's bullshit organization) that would not exist if it had not plagerized from Rand.

Proud Member Of The "Bomb-Them-Into-Oblivion" School Of Foreign Policy

I commented on my friend Syed Kamall MEP

Richard Wiig's picture

Yes Kenny, you mentioned him, but what was he promoting? Liberalism, or Islam? They are two different things. Of all the liberal muslim organisations you list, how many are having any success in reforming Islam? Do their arguments stack up? Personally, I haven't found one reformer yet whose arguments stack up. They are consistently shot down in flames, and then they resort to ad hominems and the like. It is the Jihadists arguments that need to be shot down, but as yet, no one has done it. Given how pious the Jihadists are, all they need be shown is how unIslamic their actions are, and they would cease their war. If non-muslims can easily shatter the arguments of would-be reformers like Irshad Manji, then what hope do they have with truly pious Muslims? None!!! But you think that because of the existence of these groups that all will be hunky dory? Please, go a little deeper.

Fraser

Richard Wiig's picture

Fair enough. I can understand you not wanting to ask during a business meeting, but there are other times and places to pose questions. Perhaps you could go to the next outreach meeting at the local mosque and pose a few questions there?

The likes of Fraser

Richard Wiig's picture

Jameson asks a good question - why don't we hear anything from all these moderate muslims. My guess is, because they can get away with not saying anything.

That would be because of the likes of Fraser, who is more concerned that he doesn't cause offence, than getting to any nitty gritty. But Suma, there is another reason. The vast majority of Muslims have no answer, because the Jihadists are being true to Islam.

Irshad Manji, and other would-be reformers

Richard Wiig's picture

Noting that there are some who call themselves reformers, is not enough. 

Fjordman: Why I Criticize Irshad Manji

[NOTE from Robert Spencer, April 14: Greetings, Muslim Refusenik readers! What follows below is some carefully reasoned criticism of some of Irshad Manji's positions, written respectfully by the Norwegian essayist Fjordman. It would have been refreshing if Ms. Manji had replied to the points made here, rather than simply slam Jihad Watch as "right wing." I wrote to her to ask her why she thought we were right wing: because we oppose jihad violence and Islamic supremacism? Or because we oppose the Iraqi democracy project? Or because we call for Islamic reform? Or something else? I did not receive a reply. As Ms. Manji claims to want to foster free and open debate, I find that disappointing. Name-calling isn't dialogue, now is it? If Ms. Manji would ever wish actually to discuss these or related issues with me in any forum, public or private, instead of just calling names (as fun as it is), she knows where to reach me.]

A new essay by the Norwegian writer Fjordman:

I received some criticism for a negative review I wrote at the Gates of Vienna blog of Irshad Manji's book The Trouble With Islam, which I had finally decided to read because so many people are referring to her as the great hope of a liberal Islam.

Since I write under the pseudonym Fjordman myself, I try for the most part to refrain from criticizing too much those who make significant contributions to the debate regarding Multiculturalism and Muslim immigration using their own names. Hans Rustad is the editor of Document.no, which is Norway's largest independent blog and in my eyes rightfully so as it is a counterweight to the ridiculous anti-Israeli and anti-American bias among the mainstream media. I like his website and read it regularly.

While disagreeing with him on certain topics, my goal is thus not to "get." Mr. Rustad in any ways, simply to address an issue I believe to be of general interest.

 


According to Mr. Rustad, "I don't think your description of Manji fits at all. She is not vague and incoherent, she is among the most intelligent and sharp-sighted observers I have seen. If she doesn't suffice [as a reformist], then I believe there may be something wrong with your requirements. I do not understand why you are out to 'get' Irshad Manji. She has delivered razor sharp analyses of what's wrong with Islam of our age. She sees the infantilization and the cult of victimhood. Her openness towards Israel and Israelis shows an open-minded, unprejudiced and politically intelligent individual. You give her little credit for this."

Jens Tomas Anfindsen, who holds a PhD in philosophy and is specialized
in the philosophy of religion and is one of one of two editors of the
interesting bilingual website
HonestThinking, agrees with some of my
criticism of Manji. According to Mr. Anfindsen, "Manji is a positive
voice. My point is limited to demonstrating that her attempts at
reviving ijtihad are flawed from a purely theological point of view.
What she does may be great, but it cannot be viewed as a revival of
something that is already present within the Islamic tradition."

Anfindsen believes that what she says about ijtihad, is, from a theological point of view, pure nonsense:

"Manji is correct that ijtihad is an established principle in traditional Islamic theology, and it is also correct that the emphasis on and freedom to exercise ijtihad among Islamic jurists has varied throughout the ages. Especially during phases when Islam expanded and conquered other highly developed societies, the need for ijtihad, re-thinking of traditional views, to solve legal problems that the Koran and the hadith didn't prescribe unambiguous solutions to, increased. However, there are strict rules for the use of ijtihad, and even a superficial knowledge of what it is about will reveal that ijtihad cannot possibly be what Manji claims it to be. If Manji were right, any Muslim could rationalize almost anything and then present the result as Islamic jurisprudence. Simple logic indicates that this cannot be true."

Some of the limitations is that ijtihad can only be exercised by someone versed in Islamic law, which has traditionally only meant men. More importantly, ijtihad cannot under any circumstances set aside legal principles that are clear and explicit. For instance, no Islamic mufti can claim that it is allowed to drink alcohol or eat pork, as these things are clearly and unambiguously prohibited in the holy texts, and ijtihad can of course not alter this.

Ijtihad is thus similar to the personal judgment of judges or those versed in law in our secular justice system. This does indeed leave some room for interpretation, but it cannot set aside what has been put down clearly in text of a statute, legislative history and legal precedent.

According to Mr. Anfindsen, "Although it would be amusing if Manji could persuade young Muslims that ijtihad entails that they can decide for themselves anything they want to, and then claim that the conclusions they reached were Islamic, this understanding of ijtihad has absolutely nothing to do with the traditional Islamic legal principle of ijtihad."

In my view, Manji is NICE, which is good, but not enough. There are about one billion nominal Muslims in the world. The more intelligent Islam critics already knew that not all of them are monsters. That's not the point. The point is that her arguments are weak. Manji gets away with this because the average Western reader knows even less about the subject than she does. We must never get so emotional over discovering a person calling herself a Muslim yet renouncing anti-Semitism and Islamic intolerance that we abstain from looking critically at whether her analyses hold true.

There are two kinds of Muslim reformists: Those who lie deliberately, either to enhance their own personal wealth and prestige or as a strategy to confuse and divide non-Muslims. And then we have the others, which I unfortunately fear constitute a minority of the reformists, who genuinely believe what they are saying. My gut feeling after reading Manji, based partly on the fact that she includes critical words about the Koran itself, something which self-appointed "reformists" slash Islamic moles such as Tariq Ramadan never do, is that Manji is genuine. However, I have read the work of other reformists. Not one of them has so far, in my view, presented a credible case of how to reform Islam, but at least some of them have argued in a more logically consistent manner and based their views more thoroughly on Islamic texts than Manji does.

What worries me about Manji and finally caused me to write about her is that presumably well intentioned individuals such as her can contribute to keeping the illusion of a reformed and modern Islam alive during the time frame when non-Muslims might have a chance of separating ourselves from the Islamic world without massive bloodshed. Manji's contribution, well meaning as it might be, may thus end up being negative because she will make others share her unfounded illusions about a liberal Islam at a time when we need to deal with and shed dangerous, Multicultural illusions.

Although she never says so explicitly in her book, I get the impression that Manji largely agrees with the mantra that "Islam is whatever Muslims make of it." I don't share this view. Why do those who behead Buddhist teachers in Thailand, burn churches in Nigeria, persecute Hindus in Pakistan or blow bombs in the London subway always "misunderstand" Islamic texts? Why don't they feel this urge to kill people after reading about, say, Winnie the Pooh?

No text is infinitely elastic, just as no rubber band can be stretched to any length. If any text was infinitely elastic by personal interpretation, we could replace the Koran with any other book and get the same result. That's obviously not the case. If you have a text that repeatedly calls for killing, death and mayhem, more people are going to "interpret" this text in aggressive ways. Islam is the most aggressive and violent religion on earth in practice because its texts are more aggressive than those of any other major religion, and because the example of Muhammad is vastly more violent than that of any other religious founder. If you return to the original Islam, which Manji claims to seek, you get Jihad, since that's what the original Islam was all about.

Ijtihad isn't magic. The dozens of explicit Jihad verses in the Koran won't all magically disappear. As long as they exist, somebody is bound to take them seriously. And since any "reformed" Islam must ultimately be rooted in Islamic teachings and texts, this probably means that Islam cannot be reformed.

I will give Manji credit for asking some sensitive questions. According to her, "Far from being perfect, the Koran is so profoundly at war with itself that Muslims who 'live by the book' have no choice but to choose what to emphasize and what to downplay. (…) What if it's not a completely God-authored book? What if it's riddled with human biases?

Yet her philosophies are not always consistent, and one sometimes gets the impression that she treats Islamic texts as merely a fashion accessory.

Manji praises the tolerance of the so-called Islamic Golden Age. If she is familiar with Bat Ye'or's work on dhimmitude, which she quotes, how can she still go on with talking about the tolerance of Islam? In the essay Andalusian Myth, Eurabian Reality, co-authored with Andrew G. Bostom, editor of the book The Legacy of Jihad, Bat Ye'or dispels the myth of the alleged "tolerance" of medieval Spain under Islamic rule during the so-called Golden Age. Moreover, not only does Manji paint a too rosy portrait of the treatment of Christians and Jews, she is suspiciously quiet about the treatment of other non-Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists etc. who hardly have any rights at all in Islam. Why? Are they not human? Has she read K.S. Lal's The Legacy of Muslim Rule in India?

I don't doubt for a second that if Muslims succeed in subjugating much of Europe, this will in the future be hailed as a Golden Age of Islam. But it wouldn't be a Golden Age of Islam, it would be the twilight of Western civilization in Europe, just as the previous Golden Age was the twilight of the pre-Islamic civilizations in the Middle East.

In the eyes of Irshad Manji, the problem with Islam today is literalism: "Christians have their Evangelicals. Jews have the ultra-Orthodox. For God's sake, even Buddhists have fundamentalists. But what this book hammers home is that only in Islam the literalism is mainstream." Her solution to this is to re-discover ijtihad, the Islamic tradition of critical thinking and independent reasoning.

Manji presents ijtihad re-interpretation as something bold and new for the 21st century, but it is in fact neither bold nor new. The first modern Islamic reformers in the 19th century, such as Jamal ad-Din al-Afghani and Muhammad 'Abduh, stressed the importance of ijtihad, argued that "the door to ijtihad" had not been closed by medieval jurisprudence and that it was a right as well as a duty to apply the principles of the Koran and the Sunna to the problems of their age. 'Abduh meant that individual ijtihad was permitted, but that it should operate within the framework of what was not laid down clearly in the Koran or sound hadith, and should thus be applied where these sources were silent or only stated a general principle.

Scholar Rashid Rida became 'Abduh's biographer. According to him, the Islamic umma was at the heart of the world's civilization as long as it was truly Islamic and can be recreated if Muslims return to the Koran. The ijtihad of the early reformers indirectly contributed to the establishment of the "fundamentalist" movement per excellence, the Muslim Brotherhood. Hassan al-Banna, the founder of the MB from 1928, became familiar with the thoughts of Muhammad 'Abduh while studying in Cairo, but 'Abduh's disciple Rida influenced him even more. Banna, too, believed that the Islamic decline could be reversed only by returning to the original teachings of Islam.

Why doesn't Irshad Manji discuss the impact of Afghani, 'Abduh, Rida and the other reformers who advocated ijtihad already in the 19th century?

Manji writes that: "'Operation Ijtihad' centrals around liberating the entrepreneurial challenges of Muslim-women through micro-business loans. These are a sort of micro-investments. The whole idea here is to give women the resources to start businesses, so that they will earn their own assets, and with those assets they can teach their own children. They can start their own schools, what's happening now in some parts of Kabul. The bottom-line to all of this is that when women have their own assets, they can read the Koran by themselves. Then they will discover verses in the Koran that imams will never tell them about. (…) Imagine if the United States, the European Union, Canada, Australia, Japan, and other rich allies launched Operation Ijtihad by recasting part of their national security budgets as micro-enterprise loans to creative women throughout the Muslim world."

I'm not against micro-credit per see. I know Bangladeshi economist Muhammad Yunus and others have had some success with this. But I am deeply skeptical of having non-Muslims paying for this, if the objective is supposed to be an Islamic Reformation.

I'm not a feminist, and I'm not buying the assertion that Islamic aggression will disappear once women re-interpret the Koran. The problem with Islam isn't the patriarchy, it is the violence in its core texts. Exactly how are the more than 100 Jihad verses of the Koran, the dozens of aggressive military raids by Muhammad and his companions as contained in the Sunna, the hadith and the Sira going to go away because they are read by women? If women will make a difference, it will be in bringing Islam down, not in reforming it.

On pages 160 – 162 of her book, Manji writes that: "September 11 is a searing reminder of what can happen when we hive ourselves off from the problems of 'others,' the lesson being that good global citizenship has colossal benefits for domestic security. Regardless of whether Westerners want to accept this fact, Westerners have to accept it. And we have to accept it now because Arab Muslims are experiencing a baby boom. (…) Whoever denies these kids economic and civic participation will incite a degree of chaos capable of convulsing much of the planet. The Arab baby boom is as much the West's problem as it is the Middle East's. (…) Why wait until millions more Muslims show up at Australian, German, and North American checkpoints? Isn't it a basic matter of security that Muslims heading to these places arrive already knowing that Islam can be observed in ways that complement pluralism rather than suffocate it? (…) the West can't advance without immigrants. (…) In short, the West needs Muslims."

Do we? Muslim immigration costs vast sums and has seriously destabilized our nations. Manji wants us to continue Muslim immigration while France is already close to a civil war because of Muslim immigration. Frankly, I don't see any reason why we should allow a single believing, practicing Muslim to get permanent residency in our countries. And we invest in India, China and other countries because we believe they have a future. It's the duty of Muslims to fix their problems, not ours. We've done enough, and what we have donehasn't helped. If anything, Muslims have become more demanding and aggressive.

Muhammad 'Abduh, Rashid Rida and other early reformers, even Wahhabists, hailed the Golden Age of Islam and wanted to return to the "true Islam" of the earliest generations, just as Manji is doing. Jihadists want the West to give money to Muslims and keep the doors open for continued Muslim immigration. Muslim reformists such as Irshad Manji want the West to give money to Muslims and keep the doors open for continued Muslim immigration. So, what's the big difference here?

I stand by my initial assessment of her work: The best thing I can say about her book is that Manji is incoherent and vague. Her historical knowledge is poor and she ignores too many tricky issues. In my view, she brings absolutely no new insight into the question of whether or not Islam can be reformed. Irshad Manji wants to recycle an idea that has been preached since the 19th century, which Westerners should pay for when we are bleeding from the cost of Muslim immigration and while rich Arabs are sponsoring terrorism in our countries. Thanks, but no thanks. The most annoying aspect of this is that her writings have got much more attention than more deserving candidates. Buy a book by somebody who actually understands Islam, such as Understanding Islam and the Muslim Mind by Ali Sina, books by Ibn Warraq, or Wafa Sultan's upcoming book.

Moderate Muslims

Kenny's picture

They can be found at

The Association for Liberal Thinking (in Turkey)
The Alternate Solutions Institute (Pakistan)
The Baghdad Economic Research Center
The Iraqi Institute for Economic Reform

There will probably be other organisations that I am not aware of.

The Minaret of Freedom Institute and the Islamic Free Market Institute are based in the US and promote liberty and free market economics to Muslims

Moderate muslims

Suma's picture

There are some efforts to develop a moderate Islam (e.g. check out Irshad Manji) but right now I only know of moderate muslims. As Aaron says, thank god for hypocrites.


Jameson asks a good question - why don't we hear anything from all these moderate muslims. My guess is, because they can get away with not saying anything. People are intellectually lazy. I know many people who ought to be atheists, but prefer to cling to some kind of personal god. I think that if these moderate muslims are presented with a stark choice between vocally supporting western values and whatever it is that they are silently supporting, they will not hesitate to pick western values; but for now they can avoid making that choice given the multiculturism, and anti-west MSM and "intellectuals".


Suma

"Do what thy manhood bids thee do, from none but self expect applause..." Captain Sir Richard Francis Burton (Source: www.wikipedia.org)

Muslims (including those watered down) and Christianity

Kenny's picture

I was disgusted with Scott's comment that the 7/7 bombers' ancestors entered Britain under false pretences. His comments about muslims not being interested in assimilating are factually incorrect. He does seem to be prejudiced against Muslims (as does Richard Wiig).

I have known and worked with many Muslims, all of whom I would consider to have been fully assimilated. I commented on my friend Syed Kamall MEP above. One of my fellow European Parliamentary candidates in Yorkshire was a devout and well-connected Muslim.

I hired a Muslim as my personal assistant and she proved to be an excellent choice. She drank alcohol (but not "watered down") and was totally assimilated. A large proportion of the "Indian" restaurants in the UK are owned by assimilated Bangladeshi muslims.

There is a small, but substantial, MINORITY of Muslims in the UK who are not assimilated. Lack of assimilation was not a factor in the 7/7 bombing as the perpetrators were assimilated. The main cause of the Islamic terrorism was the indoctrination of young Muslims by extremist clerics. The UK government, through the police and security services, appears to have finally tackled the issue with success.

I am amused and bemused by Americans arguing for assimilation. The original settlers from Europe did not assimilate with the native Americans. Perhaps Scott is planning to join a tribe in California.

As for Chrstianity being less dangerous than Islam, what about the crusades, the Spanish inquisition, Henry VIII's persecution of the Catholics and "Bloody" Mary's persecution of Protestants in England? I could go on....

Rand opposed foreign aid

Kenny's picture

Jason and Bill support foreign aid to Israel and other countries.

Ayn Rand opposed ALL foreign aid - most notably through the character of Ragnar Danneskjold in "Atlas Shrugged". Government foreign aid is financed through compulsory taxation. Rand opposed taxation and argued that a minimal state should be funded by voluntary contributions.

Yes, of course I'll

Fraser Stephen-Smith's picture

Yes, of course I'll interrupt a meeting to quiz my colleagues on their religious beliefs.

I'll ask these questions just after I address any Christians in the room with 'Do you praise God and aim to emulate his jealousy, his vindictive bloodthirsty ethnic cleansing, his misogyny, homophobia, racism, infanticide, genocide, filicide, megalomania, sadomasochism, and capriciously malevolent bullying?' [Not really my own words]

Nice, Richard

Mitch's picture

I'll be very interested to see the answers to those questions aswell.

This phrase kinda sums it up for me: "There are moderate Muslims, but there's no such thing as moderate Islam"

Would you do me a favour?

Richard Wiig's picture

Not only is it possible, but I interact with practitioners of this watered-down Islam every day in my professional and personal life.

Fraser, would you do me a favour? Ask a few question of these muslims you interact with.

Here's a couple:

 - In what way have you watered down Islam?

 - Do you consider the Prophet Muhammad to be a moral exemplar and the model for all men to aspire to? If not, how do you reconcile that with your religion?

 - Do you put the umma or your nation first? If the "nation", then how do you reconcile that with your religion?

That's just a couple to start with, but there will be more, possibly even better ones. I'm sure Bill and Scott could think of a few.

I suspect Kenny does as well. Is this a key difference between those SOLO members who raise the most hue and cry over the danger of almost all muslims, and those of us who think we smell bigotry behind the reasoned arguments?

I can only speak for myself, but no, it is not a key difference. It has been some time, but I have dealt with many muslims and found many of them to be amiable and friendly - but all that is entirely irrelevant.

Bill, Scott, Richard - how much experience do you have of interacting with educated and successful muslims?

"Educated" means little; piety means a hell of a lot.

"I am saying that any

Aaron's picture

"I am saying that any "Muslim" who truly supports a Constitutional Republic, is not being a devout Muslim; who support equal rights for women and non-Muslims, is not following Islam."

This kind of behavior is fortunately common to the religious - and is vital to society not being drastically more screwed up. Any 'Christian' who doesn't aim to be a martyr or who supports equal rights for women is not following Christianity.

Thank god for hypocrites. Eye

Mr. Cresswell...

atlascott's picture

I am not going to refute the articles you cite individually, or, point for point, identify why each article has a different context.  I've read the articles your suggest.  They are all worthy of a read.  Some are outright fanciful and false.  Iagree with alot of it, but disagree with alot of it.

You say the ideas and positions in those articles are true, I say they are not all true.  Around and around we go.  Tra la la.

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

Anecdotal Empirical Evidence

Fraser Stephen-Smith's picture

"I am willing to concede that it is theoretically possible for some watered-down, bastardized version of Islam to be developed [...] in order to take its place with Christianity and Judaism as a less-dangerous religion.  I just don't see it happening."

Not only is it possible, but I interact with practitioners of this watered-down Islam every day in my professional and personal life. I suspect Kenny does as well.

Is this a key difference between those SOLO members who raise the most hue and cry over the danger of almost all muslims, and those of us who think we smell bigotry behind the reasoned arguments?

Bill, Scott, Richard - how much experience do you have of interacting with educated and successful muslims?  

Eloquent proof of multi-generational non assimilation

atlascott's picture

"The 7/7 terrorists in London were British citizens, not recent immigrants"

I'm sure their ancestors acted friendly when first entering Britain under false pretenses.  This is just another great piece of evidence which suggests these folks are not interested in assimilating.

I'm not saying that people of Arab background cannot be Objectivists, nor that Muslims can't abandon Islam and become moral and rational people.  I am saying that any "Muslim" who truly supports a Constitutional Republic, is not being a devout Muslim; who support equal rights for women and non-Muslims, is not following Islam.

I am willing to concede that it is theoretically possible for some watered-down, bastardized version of Islam to be developed which in some 1984-esque way completely reverses the most heinous aspects of its doctrines in order to take its place with Christianity and Judaism as a less-dangerous religion.  I just don't see it happening.

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

I Agree

Bill Visconti's picture

"I think that it is in America's interest to provide Israel with military assistance, including monetary aid if applicable to the context. I think the same is true with Japan, South Korea and other allied capitalist countries in rough neighborhoods."

I agree. Foreign aid is not inherently wrong. Non-altruistic foreign aid that serves America's legitimate self-interest is appropriate. Back to the immigration debate...

Proud Member Of The "Bomb-Them-Into-Oblivion" School Of Foreign Policy

"And the U.S. government

Jason Quintana's picture

"And the U.S. government should not be providing it with financial aid. "

Hmmmm. Just a side note (I don't want to interrupt this thread). I think that it is in America's interest to provide Israel with military assistance, including monetary aid if applicable to the context. I think the same is true with Japan, South Korea and other allied capitalist countries in rough neighborhoods. This process is actually a part of a strategy to defend the United States. In any case, if you want to continue this in another thread I'd be glad to hammer it out.

- Jason

Bush advocating taking

Thomas Lee's picture

Bush advocating taking action against those who sponsored terrorism. According to his rationale, we Brits should have bombed the Irish-American districts in Boston and New York that financed the IRA.

That doesn't follow. The proper response is to ask the U.S. to arrest those who are financing the IRA. Only if the U.S. government is financing or otherwise assisting a threat to Britain should Britain take such a course. (This is the reason why we must take military action against Iran and possibily other Middle East nations who threaten us, and aid and protect our enemies.)

On SOLO, there are several "Objectivists" who appear to promote the interests of theocracy, i.e. Israel, rather than Objectivism and its advocacy of individual rights. Israel continues to be propped up by US altruism, i.e. the dollars of the American taxpayer.

Israel is not a theocracy by any definition of "theocracy" I am familiar with. Certainly, there is much to criticize about Israel. And the U.S. government should not be providing it with financial aid. That is all true. But those are minor issues in the context of the Islamic totalitarian threat.

Israel is the only civilized, semi-free nation in a part of the world that is of crucial importance to us, and it is the only nation in that region that is an ally in our fight against Islamic totalitarianism. That being the case, Israel deserves our moral support, and perhaps our military support (although, more likely we just need to get out of Israel's way and encourage it to crush its enemies).

Yaron Brook has given a number of very good lectures on this subject and I highly recommend them to anyone concerned with this issue.

All true.

Peter Cresswell's picture

"Those bullet points are interesting, but are vague adn unsupported. And some are outright false."

Well, no they're not. All the evidence lies on those linked articles, just as I said.

Wishing the facts were otherwise is not a good basis for debate.

Utter nonsense, Jameson

Kenny's picture

My comment related to my experience of Muslims, especially British Muslims. Sayed Kamall, a Conservative member of the European Parliament representing London, is a one of the most libertarian Parliamentarians in Europe. I would rather have him represent me than a fascist like Guiliani.

The 7/7 terrorists in London were British citizens, not recent immigrants. Similarly, the IRA terrorists, financed from New York and Boston, were British citizens.

Bush advocating taking action against those who sponsored terrorism. According to his rationale, we Brits should have bombed the Irish-American districts in Boston and New York that financed the IRA. I was disgusted by Fred Weiss's pro-IRA comments on this site.

On SOLO, there are several "Objectivists" who appear to promote the interests of theocracy, i.e. Israel, rather than Objectivism and its advocacy of individual rights. Israel continues to be propped up by US altruism, i.e. the dollars of the American taxpayer.

So why is Peikoff (as Objectivists are atheists) not attacking the theocracy in Israel? The DIM hypothesis should be applied to the Likud and Israeli government as well as the Republicans. Do I detect inconsistency or double standards?

Fucksake, Kenny...

Jameson's picture

The vast majority Muslims oppose Islamic extremism and terrorism.

If that were true the cry from the 1.6 billion "friendly Muslims" would be deafening. As it stands we can't even hear their collective whisper. Why? Because they implicitly (and explicitly) uphold the doctrines of the Koran.

Get with the programme man; you simply cannot filter the good Islamic from the Jihadist at the border when they're infiltrating under the guise of being a “friendly”. It’s like mad cow disease: you can pity all the good bovines you like, but you don’t risk letting ANY of them in.

Thanks for the invaluable links, Peter!

Problems

atlascott's picture

Those bullet points are interesting, but are vague adn unsupported.  And some are outright false.

There is really no distinction in the above between legal and illegal immigrants.  Since local law enforcement is not ALLOWED to categorize illegal immigrants, I am dubious that the above studies about the peaceful nature of immigrants and whether it applies to illegal immigrants, especailly in the face of loads of anecdotal evidence to the contrary.

Kenny adds:  "The vast majority Muslims oppose Islamic extremism and terrorism."

No, the vast majority of Muslims participate in or support extremism and terrorism, just as is required by their Holy Book, the Koran, and as is repeated over, and over, and over, and over by virtually all of their leaders (and secretly by the rest of them).  When are we finally going to take them at their word?

Scott DeSalvo

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur!

Kenny

Bill Visconti's picture

You just don't get it.

Proud Member Of The "Bomb-Them-Into-Oblivion" School Of Foreign Policy

There goes that club again.

Richard Wiig's picture

" Now we must expose the anti-Muslim bigotry that some posters try to mask as anti-terrorism or opposing Islamo-fascism"

The tool of Neanderthals.

Muslims have the right to immigrate too

Kenny's picture

Well done, Peter. Now we must expose the anti-Muslim bigotry that some posters try to mask as anti-terrorism or opposing Islamo-fascism. The vast majority Muslims oppose Islamic extremism and terrorism. We can disagree with their religious beliefs but fight for their individual rights, including immigration, at the same time.

Good philosophy..

Rick Giles's picture

...and a great track too.

We really must get our own full-sized Liberty down our way. On that day we'll know New Freeland when we see it.

Thanks

Suma's picture

I third the thanks for the list of articles, Peter; just what I was looking for. Great quote from James Valliant - the link to the corresponding article seems to be broken, but a copy of that same article seems to resides on the SOLO site at http://www.solopassion.com/nod...


Suma

"Do what thy manhood bids thee do, from none but self expect applause..." Captain Sir Richard Francis Burton (Source: www.wikipedia.org)

I will take the rare

Jason Quintana's picture

I will take the rare opportunity to agree with Bill Visconti. Thanks for the resources. Great intellectual ammo.

- Jason

Excellent Post

Bill Visconti's picture

Great post. You provide convenient access to excellent resources. Thanks.

Proud Member Of The "Bomb-Them-Into-Oblivion" School Of Foreign Policy

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