July 1, 2010

OF COURSE, THERE IS NO CONSERVATIVE CASE AGAINST IT:

The Conservative Case For Immigration: Immigration laws make for the worst possible intervention into free labor markets. (Warren Meyer, 07.01.10, Forbes)

What surprises me is how many conservative and free market executives I meet who are supportive of ever more restrictive immigration laws. These are folks who will vociferously oppose the smallest incremental government encroachment on commerce, yet now support perhaps the single most onerous government intervention in the private labor market. It is to these people that I offer the conservative, free market case for immigration:

Like the founders of this country, most conservatives would agree that our individual rights exist by the very fact of our existence as thinking human beings, and that these rights are not granted to us by kings or Congress. As Ben Franklin said, “Freedom is not a gift bestowed upon us by other men, but a right that belongs to us by the laws of God and nature.”

Conservatives have usually differentiated themselves from the left by counting property and commerce among these natural rights. While the left typically treats commerce and property as artificial frameworks created by the government (in Arizona, our sales tax is called a transaction "privilege" tax), conservatives will usually defend commerce as a fundamental corollary to our freedom of association. But when it comes to immigration, conservatives have far more in common with the left's statist views on commerce than they do with their own views of free exchange.

Under current immigration law, the government is in effect licensing labor, requiring that individuals get the government's permission to work. Today these permits to work are granted in a restrictive and arbitrary manner based place of birth, but who knows tomorrow what new requirements might get stacked on workers before they can obtain a government license to work?


The case against begins with the repudiation of Creation.

Posted by Orrin Judd at July 1, 2010 6:26 PM
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