Heating Up an Old Debate on Immigration

Tuesday, July 24, 2007
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I thought I’d seen poorly written articles before, but then I saw this one from L. Neil Smith. I have no idea why, but Mr. Smith rehashed an old Internet debate on immigration (involving Pat Buchanan, with both me and Steve Kubby responding to Pat in the negative), and went on a long and vicious attack on me. He distorts my views; makes juvenile, personal attacks; and just basically falls off the rational wagon. This thing leaves me thunderstruck.

Here is a first example of Mr. Smith distorting facts in order to paint me black. He says:

De Coster seems more intent on attacking Steve Kubby than handling the matter of immigration, parroting nasty, puckered Rothbardisms no genuine libertarian ought to repeat about somebody else’s personal and political priorities. Admittedly, I was never terribly interested in marijuana, medical or otherwise, myself; she appears to believe she has a kind of calling to tell others how they may use their freedom, reading them out of the movement if they insist on making their own choices.

Now, he purposely leaves out the facts here. First off, I wrote two articles on immigration, one for WorldNetDaily and one for LewRockwell.com. The first one was in response to a Pat Buchanan article, and the second one was a response to Steve Kubby, who weirdly attacked me for my first article in which I criticized Pat.

This is my first article, and my purpose here was to criticize some things that I thought Pat Buchanan got very wrong on immigration and on the varied libertarian views on immigration. I thought he was remiss in not mentioning the Hoppean, private-property views on immigration that some libertarians support. The only mention of Steve Kubby in my article is this part here: “It’s true that open borders lead to more statism. Indeed, it takes a massive state to maintain open borders. So libertarian critics such as Steve Kubby are wrong, and Buchanan is right.” That is it.

Kubby then wrote this article, which included extensive and gross personal attacks on me. So I responded by doing the same in return. So Mr. Smith, seeing this only through his friend Kubby’s eyes, unfairly attacks and chastizes me for defending myself from an attack from Kubby, and attacking that man in return. This is shoddy and reprehensible writing, and he should be embarrassed by his half-report. Then, this comment from Mr. Smith is a really bad zinger in my humble opinion.

Border controls of the kind that De Coster and Cox seem to demand are totally inconsistent with maintaining a free country. Of course if the last thing you want is a free country, then border controls are the perfect place to begin. And there are always plenty of “useful idiots” like these two to help you make it happen.

I have never, ever “demanded” border controls. To support my point, Smith links to nothing that I have said that “demands controls,” but only states that as his interpretation, and leaves it up to his very trusting readers to believe him. Then Smith again completely distorts things. He says:

Similarly, those who demand that the borders be closed blather about the burden they imagine illegal immigrants to be on taxpayers. I’m not altogether convinced of this, myself

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