The Disingenuousness of DACA

DACA stands for “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals”. Basically, it’s a policy that no matter what immigration law is, or has been, that it should be ignored in order to let children and young people pursue the American Dream.

Now who could be against the American Dream? The challenge is defining what you mean by the term when you use it.

When I use the term “American Dream”, I mean the ability to go to a free country where you are allowed to do whatever you want, so long as you leave other people alone, and so long as you demand nothing from anybody else, at least not through the force of government.

Do you think that people like Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, Marco Rubio or Paul Ryan have this definition in mind when they talk about letting young people live the American Dream? Not for a moment. They embody the welfare state. They want immigrants to ensure it keeps going.

The problem here is what’s called the fallacy of “package dealing”.

“Package-dealing”, according to my favorite philosopher Ayn Rand, is the fallacy of failing to discriminate crucial differences. It consists of treating together, as parts of a single conceptual whole or “package”, elements which differ essentially in nature, truth-status, importance or value.

That’s what DACA does. It lumps together into one conceptual package two essentially different things.

One thing is the idea of a self-responsible, self-motivated and independent person coming to a land of liberty to pursue his or her dream, unencumbered by others and refusing to burden anyone else. That was immigration under the original America, before the New Deal, the Great Society, the Progressive Era establishing the income tax, and all the rest.

The other thing is what actually happens — millions of people coming into a country that is saddled with debt and demoralization because they’re forced to pay for the schools, health care, mortgage bailouts, cell phones, food stamps and endless other things for strangers.

Remember that immigrants are just as much the victims of this system as those already here. The extent to which an immigrant acheives success is the extent to which he or she will be saddled with the same burden now placed on productive citizens to carry the load of the welfare state. The extent to which an immigrant fails to achieve success is the degree to which he or she will be stuck in poverty, in part because of the economic growth that never occurs due to all the taxation and regulation we have.

If you accept the package deal, then you feel you have to either reject immigration and therefore the ability of children to dream of a life of liberty, or, equally unpleasant, sign up millions of more people to become dependent on the massive transfer-of-wealth state we still have.

That’s why I am totally in favor of immigration. And it’s also why I’m totally against immigration as we know it. Because immigration as we know it does not mean a life of liberty. It’s a life of dependence and servitude, the sad and unjust things our country has created outside the boundaries of the Constitution that was supposed to guide us.

Immigration into a massive, dysfunctional welfare state is a problem. Immigration into an actual land of liberty is a beautiful thing. To restore the second, we’ll have to get rid of the first. It’s as simple as that.

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