Real Isolationism: Part Four

I have most recently addressed the similarities or lack thereof between Isolationism, Interventionism, and Noninterventionism on the subject of immigration policy, so now I will turn to such things as emigration, and international and domestic business or leisure travel. Before I get into that, I need to clarify a point.

And that is that temporary migrant workers who don’t renew their visa are not “illegal immigrants”. An illegal immigrant is someone who crosses the border unauthorized with the intention of living within those borders. A temporary migrant worker that has no criminal record, and is not in some way a tax parasite, yet who fails to comply with all the red tape should have the sympathy of not just libertarians who oppose bureaucratic meddling on principle, but of the entire working class, regardless of political ideology or personal income, because they know firsthand the cost in time, energy, and patience that bureaucracy exacts on their own lives. Whether its starting a business, paying taxes or fines, buying a home or vehicle, going to court, developing property, or having one’s “papers” in order, workers migrant and domestic face similar headaches.


Pure Isolationism: Emigration from the United States, if even allowed, should be accompanied by banishment of that person as well as confiscation of property left within the United States. This serves to deter others from leaving and makes reparation for the expatriate no longer serving his country in some way (as a potential job creator, taxpayer, or cannon fodder). He is who he is because of his country, his people, and his government. He owes them. He is choosing not to contribute, so all ties with him should be severed. He is a traitor. Nations that allow former United States citizens to enter or settle should also face some sort of backlash.

Pure Noninterventionism: Emigration from the United States should be treated as the necessary outcome of failing to induce that person to stay. This is not to say that those who threaten to leave should be bribed to stay at everyone else’s expense, but simply that any nation that values the prosperity it associates with having more people in the work force should not discourage the practices that enable them to be productive. High taxes not only enslave income-earners against the dictates of morality, it causes them, against the dictates of practicality, to be less productive. Worse yet (for the society making such impositions), to seek to be productive elsewhere, in the hopes of not being punished for their successes. Low taxes both encourage citizens to remain and foreign entrepreneurs to draw near. This in turn helps to increase the productive capital of the nation, which brings in more revenue and more producers.

Pure Interventionism: The isolationist stance concerning other nations receiving some sort of backlash (because they have meddled in our affairs by being more attractive places to live or make money!) is correct. Rather than just worry about a few ingrates looking for greener grass, we should also be importing the American way abroad, through force if necessary. If this means colonizing islands in the Pacific, so be it. If it means cutting ties with nations that won’t take our tourists or allow our contractors and corporations to build bases and factories on or near their territory, so be it. If this means, literally invading and occupying that nation until they submit, so be it. If this means leaving a permanent outpost in that nation to make sure they don’t go back to their old habits, so be it.


Pure Isolationism: Travel abroad should only be allowed to trustworthy people traveling to trustworthy nations. Anything else would lead to mass defections. Domestic travel should not necessarily be impeded.

Pure Noninterventionism: People should be free to move about as they please for the reasons they choose. Government agencies should not photograph them in the nude, ogle, harass, hassle, grope or molest them in airports, seaports, rail stations, or road checkpoints. The same is true whether they are going to South Carolina or South Korea. If the mode of transportation is privately owned, the owner should make the decisions, whether he is driving himself across town, or flying his customers across the ocean. This means deciding who and what are allowed aboard, as well as the destinations.

Pure Interventionism: It is dangerous to let people move about unchecked. Government agencies should be vigilant and take action in any way they can to prevent all possible risks. Even people not in some way associated with terrorist organizations should be considered a threat. Better safe than sorry. If they are flying from Milwaukee to Denver, they should be scanned or pat down. If they are US citizens driving back into this country from Canada or Mexico, they should have a passport, even if it was not required to enter those countries. If they are flying to nations harboring terrorists, they should be put on a watch list. If their name happens to be the same as someone’s on a no-fly list, they should not be allowed to catch their flight until they are cleared. If they refuse to submit to lawful orders, even ones that might not be necessary or fair, they should be arrested or grounded. Businessmen and corporations should have special licenses to do business with or within nations such as Iran.

With emigration just as with travel policies, it should be clear that the two positions with the most similarities are Isolationism and Interventionism, which both seek to curtail the natural right to mobility for security reasons that are blown out of proportion, instead of looking for a solution that is not only more effective (because it is more discriminating), but upholds individual freedom. Noninterventionism, however, looks the right to protect one’s property and the right to self-defense in questions of security, such that all people are free to choose which risks or precautions they take without inflicting those inconveniences on others.

3 thoughts on “Real Isolationism: Part Four

  1. So, I am curious; are these your thoughts or are you simply explaining what one (as an isolationist, per-se) would think?
    I mean, I know that Ron Paul has been repeatedly called, “Isolationist”, yet I know he is surely not. But, the news folk like to play that word-game (or someone likes to spoon-feed them these words).
    You know, I do not fly any longer. For a while, I had to fly often, for medical reasons (thank you, Mitt Romney, for all of the free surgeries and free medical care in the State of Mass). Now, the mere thought of having to go through the feel-up pat-down is so bad, I spend weeks battling PTSD. When my brother, a lifelong military guy, *he was Chief if the Air-Force section of Wounded Warriors, working within the Pentagon to assist all vets*, and Vietnam vet, died a couple of months back, I did not attend his funeral (Arlington National Memorial). I could not do it. I especially did not want to fly into Dulles, for obvious reasons. Now, am I a dangerous person? Should I have my tickets marked (always) with that Scarlet-S, for “secondary screening”? No. I have metal jaw-joints, and other metal implants. So, as I cannot go through their scanners, I am forced to go through the rest.
    I find the whole thing very invasive and intrusive. And, I literally get ill at the prospect. I think back and say, “This is America?”. Wow.

    • These are my thoughts. In my opinion, there is no such thing as, nor was there ever, a pure “Isolationist” in the United States political landscape. But, there are positions on certain issues that can best be described as Isolationist, say on immigration. Somebody who holds these views might also hold the isolationist position on war, or they might not. There are few , if any consistent isolationists or interventionists. Noninterventionism seems to me to be the only rational ideology within foreign policy.

      I am certainly being somewhat tongue-in-cheek, describing the most extreme (i.e., pure) variant of each ideology. Even within those extremes, I found it astounding how much interventionism and isolationism, which are supposedly opposites, have in common on most issues. It reminds me of the whole communist vs. fascist or democrat vs. republican false dichotomies.

      I haven’t flown since the year 2000, and will probably not fly again until the fascist perverts are kicked out of the airports.

      My Dad is also a Vietnam veteran (Army, 1st Cavalry). I think he went over in 1966. I am sorry for your loss.

      So you are in a slump for weeks after being “pat down”? Someday, I hope the american people will be able to seek damages from the bastards at the TSA and DHS, not just against the *unconstitutional* departments themselves, but from the individuals involved. What kind of person would do a job like that? The same who worked in Nazi death camps and Soviet gulags? I am hesitant to go that far, but the comparison is tempting.

      BTW, I am going to go vote today in the Montana primary. I think it is the weakest primary of all fifty because not only is it second to last, but it is only a preference poll (much like the one Missouri had back in February). My Dad, Mom, and little sister all voted for Ron Paul, and so will I. Most of my friends of voting age did/will also, even some of those that preferred Santorum. (Blech!)

  2. Pingback: One Year Later at PTPOL « Propagating the Philosophy of Liberty

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