More Liberaltarian Than Thou
By Bryan Caplan
It’s best to just maximize growth rates, pre-tax distribution be
damned, and then fund wicked-good social insurance with huge revenues
from an optimal tax scheme.
A core hope of my engagement with the blogosphere is to determine why there is so much resistance to this idea.
My challenge: From what philosophic point of view is “maximizing growth + lots of redistribution + the immigration restrictions lots of domestic redistribution naturally encourage” better than “maximizing growth + no redistribution + free immigration”? Whether you’re concern for the poor is Rawlsian, utilitarian, or even dogmatically egalitarian, “no redistribution + free immigration” is the way to go. In a world where a billion people who live on a dollar a day can’t legally move here to shine shoes, fretting about the fate of relatively poor Americans is morally perverse and morally obtuse.
P.S. I’m not claiming that Will is weak on immigration; as far as I know,
he’s solid. But I am claiming that once you take immigration
seriously, the hard-core open borders libertarian is a better liberaltarian than
anyone who sings the virtues of free markets plus a big welfare state.
HT: Eli Dourado