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ARI on Immigration
- an introduction -

“The wicked lead understanding astray with mastery.  There is a gymnastic of falsehood.  A sophist is a forger, and when expedient this forger mangles good sense.  A certain logic, very supple, very implacable and very agile, is at the service of evil, and excels in stabbing truth in the dark. ...

“Such a sophist, admired by fools, possesses no other glory than having made bruises in human awareness.”
— Victor Hugo [1]

From unsightly public crowds to violent crime to government corruption, immigration is ruining the West. Yet the Ayn Rand Institute promotes unrestricted immigration, even illegal immigration, including from the Third World.  Snapshots of ARI’s production on this subject over the years:

“Any restrictions on immigration – large or small – trample the rights of both employers and job-seeking immigrants.”
— Robert Tracinski
Opposition to Immigration is Un-American
ARI Op-Ed  January 15, 1999.

“The principle of individual rights demands open immigration.  Implementing that would mean phasing out all limitations on immigration.  Entry into the United States should ultimately be free for any foreigner, absent objective evidence of criminal intent or infectious disease.”
— Harry Binswanger
Anti-Immigration Rhetoric Frighteningly Reveals Education’s Failure
Forbes magazine February 3, 2013
(a reworking of  “Immigration Quotas vs. Individual Rights: The Moral and Practical Case for Open Immigration”  Capitalism Magazine  April 2, 2006).

“The problem of ‘illegal’ immigration can be solved at the stroke of a pen: legalize immigration. ... I admire those who broke our rotten, rights-defying anti-immigration laws to come here.”
— Harry Binswanger
The Solution to ‘Illegal Immigration’
Capitalism Magazine  May 20, 2006.

“The solution to illegal immigration is to make it legal.”
— Yaron Brook
Open Immigration Policy
ARI lecture uploaded to YouTube  March 17, 2008.

“The principle of individual rights ... mandates open immigration.”
— Craig Biddle
Immigration and Individual Rights
The Objective Standard  Spring 2008.

“Imagine if the number of annual immigrants increased ... to, say, five million. Virtually overnight we would see money pour into the American real estate market, as millions of new businessmen and workers bought and rented homes.”  [He goes on to say this would “eliminate the oversupply of houses.” Apparently housing doesn’t command a high enough price for Mr. Brook.]
— Yaron Brook
Open the Borders, End the Housing Glut
ARI blog  December 11, 2008.

“The border between the U.S. and Mexico (and between the U.S. and Canada) should be exactly like the border between Connecticut and Massachusetts:  you see ‘Welcome to Massachusetts’ and otherwise you are unaware of the difference.”
— Harry Binswanger
Collectivist Arizona Immigration Law Is Anti-Capitalist
Capitalism Magazine  April 28, 2012.

“Open immigration is both morally right and economically beneficial. ... If we let enough [immigrants] in, perhaps their number will offset the growing number of the native born who simper that America is the land of entitlement.”
— Andrew Bernstein
Open Immigration Will Greatly Slow America’s Rush Toward An Entitlement State
Forbes magazine  June 12, 2012.

“... let’s demonstrate the moral confidence, and intellectual rigor, to bid welcome to all; by offering them a proud and rational exposition of our nation’s principles and ideals.”  [In other words: Open borders with lecture included.]
— Amit Ghate
Does Immigration Actually Threaten American Culture?
Forbes magazine  November 12, 2012.

“... open immigration is, for contemporary America, the only policy that is both moral and practical.”
— Andrew Bernstein
Objectively Speaking
July 24, 2013 announcement of his first BlogTalk radio show on July 30.

“Ultimately, there should be completely open borders ... But a compromise is acceptable, if it’s a step in the right direction ... .”
— Harry Binswanger
Let’s Call The Democrats’ Bluff On Immigration
Forbes magazine  December 10, 2013.

“An ‘illegal’ immigrant is, in principle, like a Jew in Nazi Germany who refused to wear the yellow star.”
— Harry Binswanger
Amnesty For Illegal Immigrants Is Not Enough, They Deserve An Apology
Forbes magazine  March 4, 2013.
I am not  making this up.  Addressing those who donated to ARI:  This is where part of your money ended up,  in  La La Land.

When Amy Peikoff interviewed Yaron Brook on the Tammy Bruce radio show June 16, 2013, Mr. Brook spoke in favor of the  Rubio-Schumer-McCain-Graham-Durbin-Menendez-Flake-Bennet  immigration reform bill – read amnesty / immigration surge bill – then being considered in the U.S. Senate, saying:

“Immigrants are fantastic for the U.S. economy. ... I don’t know what I would do without all the people, all the illegal – so-called illegal – immigrants today in the system who do work for me. My life is better off because they’re working for me, there’s no question.”

On Mr. Brook’s BlogTalkRadio show of June 28, 2016 he imagined all unskilled Mexican migrants being legal:

“That raises my standard of living. And it leaves more cash in my pocket because I’m paying my gardener, my pool guy, my grocery store, whatever less money.”
Which then, he says, allows him to “create jobs” for others.

In  “Socialism Loathes the Poor, Capitalism Loves Them” (RealClearMarkets October 21, 2015)  Harry Binswanger wrote

“... it is the Right [i.e. conservatives as a group] that should be urging open immigration – to raise the standard of living of both immigrants and Americans ... .”
About immigrants: considering their voting record most love Socialism; even if they left home because of its effects they bring the socialist mentality with them. About Americans: for most of them, the non-wealthy ones, immigration lowers their standard of living (economics) and lowers their quality of life (culture).  The title of the article should have been:  “Socialism Loves Immigration, Binswanger Loathes the Middle Class.”

Harry Binswanger (in his HBTV podcast of August 9, 2021) regarding migrants coming across the southern border, speaking from his gated whiteopia community outside Naples, Florida:

“Let’s say that there’s more Covid among the immigrants than among, uh, native Americans.  [Pregnant pause.]  Get yourself vaccinated.  End of story.  End of problem.”
That would be ridiculous even if the Covid “vaccines” he referred to were safe and effective instead of dangerous experimental drugs. As it is, not only must you endure the unpleasantness of Guatemalans etc. in your neighborhood, you must be willing to have your health ruined by pharmaceutical drugs for their sake.

ARI quoted Harry Binswanger during OCON 2021 in a tweet of August 31:

“You cannot do to someone crossing the border what you do not do to people in the heartland of your country.”
In clearer language:  “You can’t do to foreigners crossing the border what you can’t do to American citizens.”

On July 3, 2022 Mr. Binswanger tweeted, commenting on his OCON 2022 lecture “The Case for Open Borders”:

“Incidentally, I advocate phasing in open borders over 5 or 10 years.  Not in one thunderbolt.”
A revealing metaphor.  What difference does it make whether historic America is obliterated slowly or in one bolt?

For those concerned about immigration changing our culture, Mr. Brook retweeted a paraphrase of something he said on February 10, 2017 (we leave off our external quote marks): [2]

“The reason Muslims and immigrants have such a high impact on our culture is because we're rotten.” – Dr. Yaron Brook

Title of a video posted June 20, 2019 on Yaron Brook’s YouTube channel:  “Too Many Jobs, Not Enough People – Immigration Needed.”  Translation:  I think workers command too high a wage/salary, therefore we need immigration to lower it.

On November 19, 2021 someone tweeted a video clip of yet another migrant crossing. An “enormous group of several hundred migrants just crossed illegally into Eagle Pass, TX. ... there have already been over 72,000 illegal crossings here in the Del Rio sector since FY’23 began on 10/1, including 1,400+ in last 24 hours alone.”  Gregory Salmieri replied on the 21st, emphasis his: “It’s so easy to get in illegally in part *because* it’s so hard to get a work visa.”  He goes on to say that the crossing is harmless and they are just “moving somewhere” – your country and maybe neighborhood to be exact, though Salmieri does not recognize the possessive – to get a job.  In full: “Whenever harmless things like moving somewhere to get a job are banned there are lots of people who will abet breaking the law, and so doing the thing illegally gets easier.”  He might as well have argued: “It’s so easy to find a prostitute in part *because* prostitution is illegal.”

June 21, 2023 ARI published “Rethink the Term ‘Illegal Immigrant’ ” by Agustina Vergara Cid, research associate at ARI, as part of its New Ideal series of editorials.  This immigrant from Argentina lectures us:

“Using the term ‘illegal immigrant’ highlights the injustice of the U.S. immigration system and the morality of the decision to come to America.”
The article is illustrated with a picture of two people. One appears to be a gray-haired asian or mestizo, the other a black. You also see a small part of a passport photo of apparently a black. This is typical of an ARI illustration featuring people: they are “racial Shmoos,” the artwork so blurred or otherwise obscured that it is difficult to determine white versus non-white.

September 19, 2023 Agustina Vergara Cid, now promoted to “junior fellow” at ARI where, as she says, “I write, research, and speak about topics related to the philosophy of immigration,” tweeted, and Yaron Brook retweeted:

“The solution to illegal immigration is legalizing immigration.

“Migrants don’t want to come here illegally if given a choice. But there's no way for the vast majority of them to immigrate legally. Give them a legal way to do so and they will, as the data show.”
To which some sarcastic fellow replied:
“The solution to illegal seizure is legalizing seizure.

“Thieves don’t want to steal given a choice. But there's no way for the vast majority of them to take what isn’t theirs legally. Give them a legal way to do so and they will, as the data show!”
And again:
“Taking what isn’t yours is wrong only because it is illegal. Remove the law and there is nothing wrong with it.

“Problem solved!”

Out of its erstwhile Washington, DC office ARI once regularly hosted what it called “educational briefings” for Congressional staffers. According to ARI’s Impact newsletter of July 2013:  “Through these briefings, we introduce congressional aides and assistants to Ayn Rand’s moral principles, we indicate how to apply those ideas to current issues and we stress the real-world impact of approaching policy issues from the framework of Rand’s philosophic thought.”  On June 20, 2013, a few days after his Amy Peikoff interview, Yaron Brook gave a briefing on “What Does a Pro-Individual Rights Immigration Policy Look Like?”  You can be sure that to him it looked a lot like the Rubio-Schumer amnesty / immigration surge bill then before the Senate.

ARI promoted open immigration in its now moribund undergraduate student newspaper The Undercurrent. [3]

ARI writers include Muslims in open immigration but sometimes say restrictions should be placed on their property rights (see Leonard Peikoff’s podcast of June 28, 2010 about the particular case of erecting a building).  ARI’s response to the NSA violating the Fourth Amendment, which the government claims is necessary to catch resident would-be terrorists, is to downplay any concern.  In either case, the “reactive statism” – statism intended to fix a problem created by the state – endangers our lives and property rights. We get crushed in a pincer movement:  Third World immigrants pushing us on one side, statism pushing us on the other in reaction. Far better – indeed good in itself – is to restrict immigration. This is not statism – contrary to what ARI maintains – it is a proper function of government:  protecting the country from invasion.

ARI writers promote both U.S. belligerency on the other side of the earth and immigration at home – invade the world, invite the world.  The government uses the problems these policies create to justify setting up a police state. ARI writers refuse to acknowledge either the police state or the connection.

The Boston Marathon bombing dramatically illustrated the evil of open immigration. The hateful Tsarnaev brothers – hateful in acts and looks – who carried out the bombing (apparently among others whom the FBI is protecting), should never have been let into the country, much less given citizenship and welfare checks.  Two of the 1993 World Trade Center bombers were in this country because of Reagan’s 1986 farm worker amnesty.  Another example:  the conspirators in the New York City subway bomb plot – one of the few real terrorist plots as opposed to FBI manufactured ones – were all “naturalized” Third World immigrants, immigrants we could have done without.

9-11 was provoked by U.S. foreign policy and then made easy by unrestricted immigration and visas. End both and we – we authentic Americans – would be safer, freer and more prosperous. Ayn Rand Institute writers blather about saving American lives, and blank out the obvious.

The harm open immigration does to us goes much further than terrorist attacks or even police state measures. Other ARI Watch articles address the problem in more detail.

1  From his novel  The Man Who Laughs.

2  The tweets, the first by LPR@leadersnaction, were a paraphrase of something Mr. Brook said February 10, 2017 on Amy Peikoff’s BlogTalkRadio show “Don’t Let It Go”:  “The reason Muslims and immigrants have such a high impact, potential impact, on our culture is because we’re so rotten from within.”  He goes on to say, not too consistently, that immigrants can help us fix the rot “if we take the right perspective,” and tell them to adopt this country’s values.

3  From  The Undercurrent:

“To oppose free immigration is to stand against the very idea of freedom.”
— Daniel Casper
Immigration – Both Left and Right are Wrong
December 22, 2009.

“In the name of the individual right to pursue happiness, we should dismantle the entire bureaucracy of immigration restrictions. Open the doors. Let them in.”
— Thomas Duke
Brave Innovators Deserve Freedom: The Moral Need for Immigration Reform
December 17, 2013.

“The problem is the very fact that such cases [of illegal migration] are being prosecuted in the first place.”
— Noah Stahl
The High Cost of Bad Ideas
November 2, 2010.

“... the kind of raw racism that a century ago motivated opponents of Chinese and other immigrants ... is fortunately rare today. But in fact, the ‘us-versus-them’ mentality that gave rise to such overt forms of racism has not disappeared ...”  [Nor will it ever, being natural. – AW]
— Noah Stahl
“You’re Not Welcome Here”
August 27, 2010.

“... the very existence of the term ‘illegal immigrant’ is a disgrace. Immigration is a legitimate human activity fully consistent with individual rights. ... Politically, this means a policy of open immigration, where immigrants are able to register with the government upon arrival in order to properly participate in the legal system and receive protection of their rights.”
— Noah Stahl
Asking Permission to Live
May 20, 2010.

“Immigrants demonstrate many virtuous traits – from the courage of the Cuban refugee who escapes home in a raft hoping to begin anew in a better world, to the perseverance of the Sri Lankan doctor who has to wait tables while he earns a license to practice in the US.”
— Ramandeep Girn
Is America Still the Land of Opportunity?
April 8, 2010.

“Illegal immigrants are pouring into the United States.” ... “Immigrants, illegal or otherwise, are a boon to the United States.”
— Rebecca Knapp
Legalize The American Dream
September 2, 2006.

“Non-citizens ... should be allowed to assemble and advocate for causes they believe in, but they should not have the right to cast a ballot deciding who will fight for their causes in government — not right away.”
— Randy Vollrath
Set the Bar Low for Immigration but High for Citizenship
March 13, 2014.