A modern libertarian discusses the problems of immigration

This is from Gary North in the Journal of Libertarian Studies: The Sanctuary Society and its Enemies

In the United States today, the waiting period for citizenship is as short as five years. The waiting period is similar in other democratic nations. This, not the threat of economic competition, is the problem of immigration for the free society. Because the citizen authoritatively declares the law and seeks to impose it on others, he can become a threat to the free society. The problem is the moral content of his confession of faith and his possession of civil sanctions, not his productivity and his possession of economic sanctions. Mises was short-sighted here: a nineteenth-century, anti-clerical, would-be value-free analyst, i.e., a liberal. It is not the welfare state as such that creates the problem of immigration; rather, it is the confession of faith of the would-be immigrants. If their confession inherently threatens the moral and judicial foundations of the free society, then immigration is a problem, with or without the presence today of a welfare state. Freedom is based on more than private contracts. It is based on a moral vision, which includes a vision of the moral boundaries of the state.

This is the single most important issue of our time. Read it all.

No such thing as “the level of demand” at an aggregate level

Through the whole of the Costello years as Treasurer, I would say that everyone would live through these exceptionally good economic times, but no one would learn a thing. And it’s not just that we had balanced budgets, but had ZERO DEBT. Only country ever to do this and we floated on air. So then we elected Labor and then we had the GFC, and then we had the advice from Treasury to go early and go hard, and so here we are today, in a crumbling economy with living standards heading south. Which is a preamble to this: Peter Costello and later treasurers right to stress benefit of surpluses. Not so sure about those later treasurers, but Peter was the legitimate article, Australia’s greatest Treasurer.

In his book on Australian treasurers, Bowen describes Costello as the country’s first post-Keynesian treasurer, rejecting the idea that taxes and spending should be used to manage the level of demand in the economy, with that task left to the Reserve Bank. The pursuit of a budget surplus was seen as evidence of good economic management and became an end in itself. Costello was able to distil his political message into a simple message: “Surpluses are good and Liberals deliver surpluses,” Bowen writes.

Half way there. There is no such thing as “the level of demand” at an aggregate level. You cannot manage it. You cannot cause it to go up and down. Aggregate demand has no separate existence apart from aggregate supply. It is Keynesian junk theory whether it is spending or adjusting rates. It will not work and never has, ever. Modern macro is false from end to end. As John Stuart Mill put it, and found in my Free Market Economics where it is explained at great length: “demand for commodities is not demand for labour”. That was written 170 years ago. The idea that there is progress in economic theory is just plain wrong.

PLUS THIS: From Max in the comments:

“Austrian theorist Henry Hazlitt argued that aggregate demand is ‘a meaningless concept’ in economic analysis. Friedrich Hayek , another Austrian, wrote that Keynes’ study of the aggregate relations in an economy is ‘fallacious’, arguing that recessions are caused by micro-economic factors.”

“The Keynesian is a collectivist methodologically. He looks at aggregates. He recommends government programs that affect aggregates.”

“Keynes argued, and his disciples still argue, that the cause of unemployment is insufficient aggregate demand. This is another way of saying that the cause of unemployment is excessive aggregate supply. The fact that Keynesians never put it this way does not affect the analytical truth of the argument.”

Absolutely dead on. Is this the source: Illegal Aliens and Unemployment: Causes and Effects by Gary North?