by Benjamin Marks, Economics.org.au editor-in-chief

There is always much debate on immigration: on what criteria the Australian government should use to determine the desirability of immigrants; on how many servings of this colour and how many helpings of that flavour should be let in; on whether it should come all at once, entrée-main-dessert, yum cha or via a self-serve smorgasbord; and on what the content and price of each menu item should be for eat-in, take-away and home-delivery (public housing). But the entire debate is a self-contradictory deduction from a false premise.

The false premise is that it is desirable to have a welfare state and that government should decide who enters the property of Australian’s, rather than the property owners deciding as if it is their own property.

The self-contradictory deduction from this is that immigrants need to prove to the government that they are desirable to the Australian people, when there is no way of knowing if the Australian government itself is desired by the Australian people.

I am a big fan of the Australian government, but I find it curious that they do not allow me to express my support. They treat me as if I dissent to government and lump me with its fiercest opponents. It is like I have been wrongly imprisoned and am sharing a cell with prisoners trying to escape.

When my taxes are due I understand what a great responsibility I have to pay them. But the government makes paying taxes compulsory, so whether I support it or not is irrelevant. I often hope that because of the great effort I put into my accounts and tax forms, going so far as to purchase expensive accounting software and the services of a team of accountants, that I might be singled out to assume a greater percentage of the burden. But instead they expect equal contribution from those who do not want to pay, and force them to pay it, thereby debasing my contribution with that of those less willing. This must be the Australian value of egalitarianism.

At election time I vote for the government. But my vote is treated as if it represents an anonymous citizen and is confused with the votes of those who vote against the government. This is despite the fact I always write my name and a little thankyou on the ballot paper, and slip a $50 note in the ballot box as further evidence that they have my sincere support.

No living person ever signed the constitution. I tried to once, but was immediately arrested. It is claimed that the constitution is a legally binding contract, yet no one ever signed it to say that they are bound by it. It is true that people voted on it, but many people voted against it. I do not see why they do not allow me to consent to the constitution. As it is, there is no evidence whatsoever that government is consented to.

I have written up a contract that says that I consent to the Australian government and am hereby obliged to do as it tells me. I have also signed one that gives the Australian government my power of attorney. But after ringing up a few government departments I still do not know where to hand it in. Surely, there are some marginal supporters of government who might give up trying to express their consent. But not me; I always carry these signed contracts in my pocket. This way, if anything happens to me, government can always feel justified in behaving towards me in any way they want. But I do fear that I might be treated like I do not consent to government, for government has not allowed me to express my consent. I would not want government to get in trouble. Some people say that this signed contract abdicating my free will to government amounts to slavery and is therefore invalid, because free will is inalienable. But this is like saying that all people who support government are confused.

I am not one of those people who just like one political party. I have membership to all the major parties and many of the minor ones as well. At election time I tick all the boxes. I understand how important our parliamentary system is and would never do anything to undermine it. Sure, I have had some minor disagreements, but it is not reasonable to expect agreement on everything. People who buy newspapers do not always agree with all the columnists. But this analogy goes too far, for some people do not buy newspapers, or buy it once and then give up on them. With government, because consent is not allowed to be expressed, there is no way of distinguishing the supporters from the critics. I, a supporter of government, am treated the same as its fiercest opponent. This is unsettling for me, as I pride myself on my independent moral values and it is a way for me to bring attention and respect to myself in the community and to separate myself from the selfish people who need to be forced by government.

Maybe those of us who support the government should secede from the rabble and create our own government. That way we would not need to associate with the undesirables who do not desire the Australian government. Perhaps we ought to find an unpopulated island and move there. In any case, we have to do something to distance ourselves from these critics of government. For as it is we cannot be distinguished from them and when the critics rise up we will be taken with them and will have no more government to defend. They might even label us accessories to the crimes of government, when it forces those who do not consent to it to obey it, or ignores the fact that if people do consent to it they can also dissent to it, or if they tacitly consent they can also tacitly dissent or tacitly do nothing at all.

When establishing this new island we will make sure we have good immigration laws. Only those who are invited by property owners and can prove sufficiently to them that they might be of some use will be allowed. We will not repeat the mistakes of the current immigration policy and its proposed variations. We have learnt this much from one of its critics, who we could not respond to, but we did manage to get away from him before we had lost all enthusiasm for the Australian government.

If they had read on, they would have seen that any restriction on immigration — that is, movement of people into a certain territory — means that any restriction on private property — that is, movement of government or other criminal organisation into a certain territory — is equally defensible. If immigration restriction is good, then government is bad. If government is good, then immigration restrictions cannot be defended. Government is the abolition of private property to the degree that government interferes. Unlimited immigration enforced by government is perfectly congruent with government. To want restrictions on immigrations is to deny the goodness of government.

Whether property owners should decide who enters their land should either be the decision of the property owners themselves or of someone else. If someone else, then private property is negated, not replaced. All property is private, for only individual’s act. A group of individuals can jointly own something, but the question is whether ownership claims are just or criminal, not public or private.

The renaming of the Department of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship is akin to John Howard wearing glasses; it doesn’t help. Immigration is about whether property owners allow people on to their property or not; it is a defence issue. The supposed Department of Defence is overseas provoking attacks on Australian soil on those who were previously no threat to us. The Department of Defence should be renamed the Department of Offence. But I exaggerate. Australia, being situated in the middle of the ocean, is a sitting duck. There is no denying that Saddam Hussein was going to harm Australians. Not even Howard or Bush could defend Hussein.

So much for most academics, journalists, politicians and other indignitaries of Australia; they are illiterate, uneducated, dangerous and arrogant enough to pretend that they are being principled in not wanting similar types to enter this country. For this they deserve our thanks.

(in order of appearance on Economics.org.au)
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  2. Why Sports Fans Should Be Libertarians
  3. Ron Manners’ Heroic Misadventures
  4. Government Schools Teach Fascism Perfectly
  5. Deport Government to Solve Immigration Problem
  6. The Drugs Problem Problem
  7. Self-Defeating Campaigning
  8. Gittinomics: Economics for Gits
  9. Exclusive Ross Gittins Interview on The Happy Economist
  10. Population Puzzle Solved
  11. An Open Letter to the CIS
  12. Principled Foreign Policy Options: Reinvade or Shut Up and Get Out
  13. WORLD EXCLUSIVE: Political Corruption Exposed!
  14. Feedback please: Is this worth doing?
  15. CIS and IPA Defend State Schooling
  16. A Thorough Review Without Spoilers of Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps
  17. Dead Reckoning and Government: A Proposal for Electoral Reform
  18. Quadrant Defends State Schooling
  19. The MPS 2010 Consensus
  20. Slogans for Property Rights Funeral
  21. Government is Impossible: Introduction
  22. Government is Criminal: Part 1
  23. Exclusive John Howard Interview on Lazarus Rising
  24. Response to Senator Cory Bernardi and the IPA
  25. Earn $$$$$ by Justifying Government Against Anarchocapitalism: Survey
  26. Statism is Secrecy: WikiLeaks vs Economics.org.au
  27. One question the Labor Party, the Liberal Party, the Greens, the CIS, the IPA, Ross Gittins, Ross Garnaut, Ken Henry, Gerard Henderson, John Quiggin, Clive Hamilton, Tim Flannery, Catallaxy Files, Club Troppo, Larvatus Prodeo, Phillip Adams, Robert Manne, Michael Stutchbury, Miranda Devine, Andrew Bolt and Dick Smith are scared to answer
  28. Libertarian Philanthropists Should Exploit Tax Evasion Convictions
  29. Ronald Kitching Obituary
  30. The Minarchist Case for Anarchism
  31. Libertarianism in a 300-word rant
  32. Economics.org.au in the news again
  33. Libertarianism In An Executive Summary
  34. The Banking Bubble Blow-by-Blow
  35. WARNING: Libertarianism Is NOT ...
  36. Would Anything Possibly Convince You that You Are Living Under a Protection Racket?
  37. An Open Letter to Dick Smith
  38. Economics.org.au at 42
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  41. No Booboisie at Gülçin’s Galt’s Gulch
  42. "Hey, Mr Anarchocapitalist, show me a society without government"
  43. The Three Epoch-Making Events of the Modern Libertarian Movement
  44. Government is Criminal: Part 2 - Methodological Individualism
  45. Government is Criminal: Part 3 - Subjective Utility
  46. Government is Criminal: Part 4 - Praxeological Synonyms
  47. Government is in a State of Anarchy
  48. Limited Government is Absolute Government
  49. Why the 2012 double Nobel laureate is coming to Sydney
  50. Exclusive Oliver Marc Hartwich Interview on Hans-Hermann Hoppe
  51. A Critique of the Opening Two Sentences of the "About CIS" Page on The Centre for Independent Studies' Website, www.cis.org.au
  52. An invitation for ANDEV members to the Mises Seminar
  53. Sell the ABC to Rupert Murdoch: Lid Blown on ABC Funding Disgrace!
  54. www.inCISe.org.au, The Centre for Independent Studies new blog
  55. The Unconstitutionality of Government in Australia (demonstrated in under 300 words)
  56. The Best Libertarian Film Is ...
  57. Launch Southeast Asian Military Operations to Free Australian Drug Dealers and Consumers
  58. Workers Party Reunion Intro
  59. Hoppe's Inarticulate Australian Critics: The Hon Dr Peter Phelps, Dr Steven Kates and James Paterson
  60. Vice Magazine Westralian Secession Interview
  61. Sideshow to Dr Steven Kates' criticism of the Mises Seminar: Davidson vs Hoppe on Adam Smith
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  64. The exciting new Australian Taxpayers' Alliance
  65. Neville Kennard Obituary
  66. Contrarian Conformism
  67. An invitation for Dick Smith, the IPA and other Walter Block fans to the 2nd Australian Mises Seminar
  68. Westralian mining legend Ron Manners of Mannkal belongs in The Property and Freedom Society
  69. What would Bert Kelly think of the Mises Seminar and Walter Block?
  70. Bad news about the Mises Seminar
  71. Gina Rinehart Fan Club gives big to Australian political education
  72. Sam Kennard wins North Sydney by-election by unanimous consent
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(in order of appearance on Economics.org.au)
  1. Deport Government to Solve Immigration Problem
  2. Citizenship for Sale?
  3. More people = More fun
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