I began this series:
This is the first in a series of posts with the intent of laying out my political philosophy. At least, the starting point of my political philosophy. That is to say, what it was three years ago when I wrote this manifesto in my head.
Which demands the question: to what extent do I even believe any of this stuff?
Proper Sovereignty excludes certain things from its purview. For example, it takes no measures to make society satisfying; it only assumes that it will be.
The greatest flaw of Proper Sovereignty is that it assumes the presence of a culture that is high-trust and corruption-averse enough to properly implement it. Some cultures may be simply incapable of implementing my political visions. We have to contend with the difficult reality that not all cultures are equal.
Proper Sovereignty is a good groundwork, but it deserves to be expanded upon. So, I would like to revisit some implications of my previous posts.
An informal part-zero to this manifesto is the first post I ever made on my blog, and what is still probably the most important: Land, Status, People. The significance of “people” maps on to part 1 of this manifesto (protecting the property of every person), and the significance of “land” obviously maps on to part 2.
Speaking of land and people, I would posit that the largest problems in the world are of the following nature: too many people for the land. No, I am not talking about the oft-ridiculed Malthusian trap. I am not worried we will run out of resources. No, I am speaking of two other issues: environmentalism and immigration.
These are the two issues I listed as “zip ties” in this early post. They both have the “zip tie” property because they deal, fundamentally, with the presence of people. Because people reproduce, and have rights, changes in these areas are irreversible. And that is not something that can be “fixed,” short of violence.
Given only part one of this manifesto, you would expect a libertarian with no concern for either of those two issues. It takes work to contextualize those issues within the framework of an otherwise free society. This is why my combination of political views is not widely represented.
First, I will address environmentalism.
The large human population destroys the environment because of resource extraction, pollution, and the clearing of wilderness for human living spaces. Certainly, we can use resources much more efficiently than we are now. But even if we do that, the affect of humans on the environment would be incalculable. Hell, even if we reduced the human population by 95%, the affect on the environment would be incalculable. Even if all humans disappeared tomorrow, the ripple effects of our past actions would constitute a mass-extinction event.
Next, immigration paradoxically both increases and decreases land prices.
Because land supply is fixed, demand is the determinant of land prices. Immigration worsens the people-land-ratio. As aggregate demand for land increases, prices rise.
But at the same time, immigration can also decrease land values within specific localities. Migrants tend to move into cities, because of cities’ cosmopolitan nature; cities are less tight-knit and therefore more tolerant of outsiders. At the same time, cities originally have very high land values. What do you think the influx of poor (and often non-integrated) people does to that land value?
These seemingly contradictory effects of immigration manifest in a single phenomenon: “white flight.” The older communities empty out the city centers. They set up separate communities, outside the cities but close enough to commute. This ruins good urban design, and we call it suburbia or urban sprawl. People move to the suburbs because of crime and schools. Even some of the people who use these euphemisms are too blind to identify them as such.
Suburban communities employ measures to intentionally waste space, to keep land prices high so they can price out less affluent people. They then virtue-signal about how inclusive they are. They might as well say, “I am tolerant of all kinds of people, as long as they are affluent enough to live in my community.”
Poor whites do not have this tool (or whatever you want to call it). They turn to cruder, more coercive, and more overt methods of exclusion, intolerance, and distrust. And so they are called “racist.” By whom? The same people who too employ racism, but can afford to do so more discretely, leaving obvious racism to be associated with destitute losers.
Suburbia “intentionally wastes space?” A bold claim, and the topic of an essay I wrote a few months ago for an economics class, which reminds me of a debate I had one time with the professor.
My professor was arguing in favor of immigration. He made the classic argument, “we need young immigrants to pay for our old-age social security.” This argument strikes little sympathy from me, knowing that leftists orchestrated both the low birth rates and the pyramid-scheme nature of social security. He followed up with a throwaway comment, “illegal immigrants don’t even consume social security!”
“So we should have only illegal immigrants?” I retorted. I have a way of phrasing contrarian arguments as pithy jokes. “Illegals are actually better than legals” is an argument Milton Friedman made in a clip I encourage you to watch.
My professor pretty much conceded to that retort, by changing the topic to his true motivation for promoting immigration.
“What about the value of my house!” My prof had just revealed the truth: he supported immigration because it raised land values.
“I don’t care about the value of you’re house” I responded. It sounds tactlessly mean, but in my defense I thought he was talking about housing prices in general, not his house in particular. My “joke” didn’t work. “Well I do care,” he retorted.
At that point, I realized that I had never heard immigration evaluated from a Georgist lens.
Of course, rising land prices are not a selling point for me. I don’t want high land prices! I may want to buy a house sometime, and I don’t want it to wreck me! But that is the reason we have immigration.
These are not the facts that are sold to the public, because not everyone benefits from rising land prices. Indeed, some are hurt. No, the public would never accept it. So instead we get platitudes about humanitarian, despite that immigration is a terrible method of altruism, as this infamous video shows.
Whether I like it or not, people who own land have more power than I do in domestic affairs. People who profit from higher demand for land, (land-owners, and especially people who collect interest on property loans), lobby government to allow an endless flow of immigrants. These immigrants take out loans for houses, benefiting both groups. As much as we want government to be incorruptible and democratic, a meritocracy of policies, it is clearly far from it. Powerful interest groups hold terrible sway.
So in other words, debt is the reason we have immigration. These words can be read as going into conspiracy territory. Know there is nothing more to what I believe than what I have written. I don’t endorse any particular extrapolations.
There is a question left to be answered. Why don’t the bankers don’t support high birth rates? Doesn’t my argument make it seem like that would be in their interest? Maybe the return takes too long, compared to bringing in immigrants next year?
The solution is to view these problems as multi-dimensional. For example, we need to account for the additional variable of feminism, which I blame for low birth rates. Feminism has been appropriated as a tool of the corporations. It’s easier for tax-collectors and debtors to extract revenues from men, so the goal of feminism is to get women to be more like men.
Men are labor-for-rent, women create progeny. When we prefer the former, we forfeit the latter. Immigration is the culmination of this short-term thinking.
I got a B+ on the aforementioned paper.
Thus concludes the proper sovereignty manifesto.