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The Case for Free Trade and Restricted Immigration

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Tags War and Foreign PolicyWorld HistoryMonetary Theory

It is frequently maintained that “free trade” belongs to “free immigration” as “protectionism” does to “restricted immigration.” That is, the claim is made that while it is not impossible that someone might combine protectionism with free immigration, or free trade with restricted immigration, these positions are intellectually inconsistent, and thus erroneous. Hence, insofar as people seek to avoid errors, they should be the exception rather than the rule. The facts, to the extent that they have a bearing on the issue, appear to be consistent with this claim. As the 1996 Republican presidential primaries indicated, for instance, most professed free traders are advocates of relatively (even if not totally) free and non-discriminatory immigration policies, while most protectionists are proponents of highly restrictive and selective immigration policies.

Appearances to the contrary notwithstanding, I will argue that this thesis and its implicit claim are fundamentally mistaken.

Volume 13, Number 2 (1998)

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Hoppe, Hans-Hermann. "The Case for Free Trade and Restricted Immigration." Journal of Libertarian Studies 13, No. 2 (1998): 221–233.