Open Borders - by Bryan Caplan


Open Borders - by Bryan Caplan

Read: 2022-10-30

Recommend: 9/10

The book gives me a lot of data about why I should feel proud as an immigrant.


Here are some text that I highlighted in the book:

  1. We too have a dream that one day we will not be judged by the nation of our birth, but by the content of our character.

  2. When governments restrict immigration, they aren’t simply refusing to help the global poor. They’re barring trade between natives and foreigners – trade that lets the global poor work their way out of poverty. If this is wrong for Sam, why isn’t it wrong for Uncle Sam?

  3. Open borders admittedly sounds like suicidal altruism if the immigrants are low skill and past their prime.

  4. Why do math when you can hastily point fingers at foreigners?

  5. There’s no point losing sleep because you might be struck by lightning. And that’s what numeracy is all about.

  6. Numeracy reminds us that “what we see on television” is utterly unrepresentative. Every day, the media show us the ugliest stories they can find on a planet with 7.5 billion people. No matter how wondrous our world becomes, the news will always horrify us.

  7. Measured by native speakers, English is only the third most-spoken language on earth, after Mandarin and Spanish. But measured by all speakers, English is the most-spoken language on earth.

  8. Talking about trust: changing the people you see changes the way you see people.

  9. Only 27% of immigrants favor more immigration – versus 12% of natives.

  10. Moving kids from the third world to the first, has a big and lasting effect on IQ.

  11. Open borders won’t destroy our freedom. It’s going to bring freedom to all humanity.

  12. Immigration restrictions are truly a solution in search of a problem.

  13. Reframing the question may not take you all the way to open borders. But you’ll never go back to the intellectual laziness of ‘kick ‘em out and keep ‘em out.’

  14. Utilitarians want to maximize happiness. Cost-benefit analysis maximizes resources’ dollar value.

  15. I want to see two parties fight about who loves immigration more! And philosophically speaking, both sides have ample reason to love immigration.

  16. When foreigners sell Americans cheap stuff, they are not ‘taking advantage of us,’ they’re serving us.

  17. What is immigration? International trade in labor!

  18. ‘Squeezing foreigners’ is a classic protectionist smoke screen for squeezing your own citizens.

  19. Mass poverty? Open borders will enrich virtually everyone on earth by massively increasing humanity’s productivity. Fiscal collapse? Even low-skilled immigrants more than pull their weight as long as they arrive as young adults. Cultural disintegration? Linguistic and social assimilation are very high. And immigrants are more law-abiding than natives! The end of freedom? Immigrants are more economically liberal and socially conservative than natives.