[cross-posted at Liberty & Power]
Robert Higgs confesses a dark secret from his family’s past:
[M]y father had done something quite remarkable: he had left the sovereign state of Oklahoma, crossed the sovereign states of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona, and entered into and established permanent residence in the sovereign state of California, all without the permission of any of the rulers of these states. Imagine that! …
Many of the Mexican children with whom I grew up might have told a tale similar to mine. The only difference would have been that for them, the origin of their migration to California happened to be not one of the states of the United States of America, commonly known as America, but one of the states of the United Mexican States, commonly known as Mexico. Was this difference important? If so, why? Do the lines that government officials draw on maps sever the heart of humanity?
Read, comme l’on dit, the whole thing.
I’m so glad he wrote this. Not only is it a more personalized, anecdotal tract from an economist – a nice change of pace – but it confirms that Higgs is quite ‘aight with me on the immigration front. I had wondered about his possible paleo orientation.
I am pleased that LRC published this.
During the Ron Paul “smear wars” some terrible things were said by a few paleos on the LRC staff, and I was worried that the “Culture War” was becoming more important to them than Liberty.
I guess it’s simply my contrarian streak, but I feel it necessary to disagree here. I don’t think very many people care much about a government line for its own sake. There is a line drawn between the U.S. and Canada, but very few people are upset about the prospect of Canadian immigration.
Also — and here I would expect that the proprietor of this blog might perhaps agree with me — I get really sick of hearing this line, especially from libertarians, about how the southwest used to be part of Mexico. Do we care about lines on maps or not? I’m sure there were maps at some point which said California was part of Mexico, but actually it was almost all Modocland, Chumashia, Klamathonia, Ohlonistan, Shastistan, etc., etc. before the Americans showed up.
I wish that this had appeared on the Independent Institute’s blog… oh wait they don’t have one do they? Why is that? Serious question, no sarcasm.
Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California only have faux sovereignty.