Multiculturalism and the problem with public property

The left on both sides of the Atlantic has much to lament: Brexit, Trump and the last week the victory of Francois Fillon in the French Republican primary, presumably clearing the way for him to face Marine le Pen for the French Presidency. The contest will pit two candidates against each other whom the left sees as both representing regressive, bigoted, anti-multicultural viewpoints. The message is clear: large parts of electorates does not buy into the transformation of traditionally ethnically and culturally homogenous societies into diverse multicultural ones. For the left this fact makes them question democracy itself. It illustrates to them what can happen when people with the ‘wrong’ opinions no longer are only on the fringes of politics.  What is should show them is the value of the respect of private property.

No-one owns France. It is the common property of all who enjoys French citizenship and as a democratic state the house rules are determined by majority vote. The question of who has access to the common property and can join the collective is therefore also subject whatever the consensus viewpoint may be. For the last several decades, that consensus has been for liberal immigration policies and has meant a transformation of civil society across the western world. Now that the tables have turned, rumbling about secession is suddenly heard from the left-liberal bastion of California. And they are right. We recently commented on the dubious morals behind the Californian secession campaign, but in essence secession would allow common-minded people to live in societies reflecting their shared values and beliefs.

A true, libertarian form of secession would be to uphold the concept of private property and allow common-minded people to purchase land and create their own, sovereign societies there, free from the tyranny of democracy.

The problem is of course that currently we do not uphold property rights. Current societal norms treat property rights as a relative: a concept that is sometimes to be respected, sometimes not. For example, I can deny a person access to my house but I cannot deny him access to my store. If I do business with some, I am by law required to do business with anyone else who wishes to do business with me on the same terms. Witness the Irish bakery who was fined for denying to bake a cake with a message that they disapproved of on religious grounds.

So the problem lies within the concept of public property. If no such thing existed and the sanctity of private property rights were respected, it would be up to the proprietor who to engage with and who to allow access to the property. If all property was private, all property would be for sale for the right price. As it happens, this would solve the dilemma the left finds itself in: faced with an electoral majority who does not accept the imposition of a multicultural society, democracy cannot accommodate their vision. By clubbing together, lefties could acquire an area where they could implement their utopian vision of environmental sustainability, social equality and multiculturalism. We predict a short-lived, painful spiral into abject poverty for such a society, but at least it would leave all us bigots, racists and misogynists to fester in our own cesspool of political incorrectness.

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