PostHeaderIcon My Stateless Mind

It would appear to be the season for redefining who we are, how we think, and how we became us. My lifelong journey from academic liberal, to patriotic authoritarian, to selfish libertarian, to now being an avowed stateless anarchist, is fairly well documented on this blog. What is most interesting to me is that although I literally spent years studying and pondering the subject before making that last leap, few seem to take my decision seriously. At times it is trivialized and/or ridiculed hereabouts. I reckon it is the connotation most have for the word ‘anarchy.’ To me it means stateless — without rulers — not without order. Perhaps it is time to republish my 2 ½-year-old essay, to try to elucidate my thinking once more:

Liberty or the State

Choose one. Only one. They are mutually exclusive.

It is interesting how both sides of our Incumbrepublocrat duopoly have very different visions of the purpose and utility of the State. Yet, both staunchly defend the existence of the Federal Government, as absolutely necessary to protect our rights and freedom. Of course they do, their cushy jobs are on the line; yet, a good many actually believe they are doing good works, in their life-long struggle to save their own vision of America, from their opponents’ strident agenda and goofy ideology. It seemingly never occurs to any of them, that if they simply shut it down and went home, most of their ‘worthy’ causes would evaporate for lack of opposition, and they would never be missed by the vast majority of a much relieved population.

What would happen if we stopped legitimizing their oligarchy? What if nobody bothered to attend the carefully choreographed kabuki theater performances they call ‘elections?’ Without our dutifully voting for the least objectionable candidates offered, they could not claim a ‘mandate’ for their ‘vision,’ and claim the mantle of ‘leader’ for their ‘constituents.’ The most important statistic worth noting in post-election polling, is how many eligible voters chose ‘none of the above,’ by the simple expedient of boycotting the sham election.

For most of a long interesting life, I have generally been an upstanding American Patriot. I wore the US Army uniform for three years back in the mid ’60s, and then a peace officer’s badge in three different small towns for several years after that. Each of these ‘government jobs,’ required that I swear an oath to defend our country and its Constitution “from all enemies, foreign and domestic.” It never occurred to me back then, to question the legitimacy of the Federal government, or its moral authority to make laws governing our conduct. Neither did I question the basis of my sworn duty to enforce them. Everyone must obey… “it’s the Law!”

Now, surprising even to me, an appreciation of my individual sovereignty and a profound love of Liberty, have brought me nearer and nearer over the years, to outright endorsing anarchy. I sincerely believe it would be preferable, to the increasingly tyrannical government calling itself, ‘The United States of America,’ which I no longer have any interest in supporting or defending. Frankly, it would bother me little, if Washington D.C. suddenly slid into the Atlantic Ocean, drowning the entire population of tax spending parasites therein.

I can’t see how I would miss it, or why I should ever again give a damn about what happens on the East Coast of North America, from my perch here on the West Coast. There are more than enough ambitious politicians, churlish bureaucrats, and surly cops around here to ignore and dodge, without needing to concern myself with those living two or three thousand miles away.

–§–

Upon serious contemplation, it only takes a modicum of common sense to realize that government, by its very nature, is the antithesis of Liberty. The State cannot be the source or provider of freedom, nor in any way its guarantor. It is axiomatic that the stronger the government, the less Liberty an individual under its claimed jurisdiction enjoys. It could not be otherwise.

The “rule of law?” The coercively subjugated individual is being ‘ruled,’ which is quite the opposite of ‘free,’ whether by law, potentates, or both. We are the descendants of once proud freemen, who fought and died for the cause of individual sovereignty and Liberty. How did we ever allow ourselves to be brainwashed into somehow believing we had a moral obligation to dutifully obey the diktats of so-called ‘authorities?’

I reckon it is for the same reason most Americans consider themselves Christians, without ever actually thinking through their blind faith, regarding some pretty implausible dogma. It is simply the way we were raised, combined with a natural desire to fit in and be thought tolerable by our neighbors. Rationally thinking aloud about such matters is taboo. To challenge, or even just examine, the underpinning mysticism, is considered rude, blasphemous, and flirting with the ‘devil.’

The common belief that the US Government is a necessary and benevolent entity, for which we should be thankful, was inculcated in our nascent minds, long before we had the chance to develop any critical thinking skills with which to evaluate the proposition. We were taught to think of the nice policeman as our friend, there to protect us from criminals. We bought the big lie that our system of government is a ‘democracy,’ of, by, and for ‘voluntary’ taxpayers. In the immortal words of Pogo, “We have met the enemy, and he is us.”

By the involuntary act of being born in the land of our fathers, we somehow implicitly agree to be bound by ‘the will of the people,’ under an ever-changing compact signed by a few representatives of our ancestors, over two centuries ago. If we wish to continue exercising our birthright to live here, we are expected to dutifully obey all the laws, rules, and regulations enacted by self-serving politicians and bureaucrats ever since, and support this now obscenely bloated government, with whatever level of taxes they demand.

Or, as so often thoughtlessly expressed by well-meaning Patriots, “America, love it or leave it.” By which they mean, all residents are expected to love, support, and obey the U.S. Government, which they unfortunately conflate with their revered flag and country. If one does not like a law, one is expected to work through the political system to get it repealed. Until it is, one is obligated to obey it, however onerous, or risk what little remains of one’s Liberty in jail.

Sorry, folks, I love my country; but I despise its government. I owe no fealty whatever to said government, however much I once loved the ‘idea’ of America, embodied in our Founding documents. I owe no respect whatsoever to any employee of said government, including those who were ostensibly ‘elected’ to their office by a democratic process.

Civil disobedience is not treason. I reserve the right to ignore all victimless crimes, rules, and regulations, as unnecessarily onerous or downright silly for a supposedly free people to endure. I am the boss of me, acknowledge no ‘leaders,’ and don’t ever want any. Anyone claiming authority to be my leader can go pound sand.

As an ex-peace officer, I especially have zero respect for those petty robotic functionaries finding it necessary to openly arm themselves to the teeth, to perform their law enforcement and tax collecting duties. Fifty years ago we managed to keep the peace with only a six-shot revolver, which was rarely ever drawn, and occasionally a nightstick. This is primarily because we earned and maintained the respect of most citizens.

I have nothing but disgust for those in SWAT teams, who wear masks and dress like jackbooted thugs (or ISIS Jihadists), to accost and intimidate American civilians (with or without reasonable cause) without allowing themselves to be identified or remembered. Why do we permit this tyrannical outrage on American soil? Those cowards too afraid or ashamed to show their face on the job like a man, need to find another line of work. The average American is becoming so turned off by these Rambo wannabes, that I am finding it increasingly embarrassing to admit I was ever one of those friendly policemen, which mothers once taught their kids to respect.

–§–

I think it is time for serious thinkers to openly and forthrightly consider anarchy as a viable alternative to nation states and rulers, especially our own. Yes, most dismiss the notion outright as preposterous, which is precisely what the statists want us to do. The connotation for anarchy is usually taken as a chaotic situation where, absent a government supplied police force with a monopoly on the legitimate use of force, violent gangs and thugs would reign supreme. Their easy prey would be unarmed and helpless cowards, cowering in their hovels, afraid to go outside and risk a confrontation. We have seen the plot in countless cowboy movies.

Yet, the proper definition of anarchy is simply “the absence of any formal system of government in a society.” It doesn’t describe social conditions, chaotic or otherwise, only the total lack of organization or control. When one thinks about it, this was the natural condition of civilization for the vast majority of human history. The centralized government of the nation state is a relatively recent development. While a potentate’s army might defend his land from foreign invasion, a medieval serf lacked a 911 system to call for the cops. He was required to defend himself, his family, and his property, with no more help than he could get from friends and family.

Similar conditions obtained in our 19th century Wild West, when adventurous settlers homesteaded unoccupied land out on the frontier, beyond any civil government’s effective control or ability to impose law and order. Sure there were wild Indians, a few outlaws, and even some ruthless gangs that occasionally terrorized the settlers and small towns that sprang up, in these effectively lawless territories.

This necessitated that good neighbors form posses, and sometimes administer vigilante justice; but most survived the anarchy just fine, and civilization flourished. Personally, I would gladly accept their stark circumstances, in lieu of those now prevailing in places like Detroit, Chicago, Baltimore, or most any other metropolitan ghetto today.

Talk about looting and marauding savages, treacherous outlaws, and ruthless gangs… and a case can be made that the primary effect of the government supplied, jackbooted, hooded, and heavily armed police departments of these dreadful modern hellholes, is to protect the bad guys from the wrath of the good guys. I can’t even imagine living in one of them; but if for some reason I had to, I would remain armed at all times, whether some foolish Progressive mayor liked it or not.

I would organize an effective, well-armed, neighborhood watch committee, which routinely studied Bronson vigilante movies as training films. Thuggery, rioting, arson, looting, and such would simply not be tolerated in our neighborhood. Perpetrators would be shot in the act, before they ever had a chance to call their lawyers and whine about their disadvantaged victim-hood. I can think of all manner of reasons why not having to wait for, or count on, government ‘authorities’ for self-defense, would make anarchy more attractive than statism.

For those preferring to hire others to protect them and their property, private security firms offer better services at rates usually far below government taxation. When available in a given locale, the Mafia will guarantee far more effective protection for only 10%. The government takes at least half, whether they actually perform or not. A Mafioso doesn’t need SWAT gear to intimidate uncooperative individuals; usually a baseball bat will suffice, and they don’t need masks. If they do have to act, they usually want to be well-remembered, to discourage repeat offenders.

The only disadvantage I could see in hiring the Mafia to keep the peace, is that they are often rather intolerant of those attempting to evade paying for their services. But, if the Government only asked for 10%, ceased incessantly trying to protect me from myself and over-regulate my every move, and was as effective as the Mafia in protecting their clients, I wouldn’t mind paying my taxes to them either.

–§–

Politics now consists of petty squabbling over how much taxes to collect from current and future taxpayers, and where best to spend them to buy votes for incumbents, not the size, scope, and legitimate purpose of the government itself. Our venerable Constitution, brilliantly crafted to limit its size and power, is now effectively a dead letter. All three branches of government routinely disregard the intended restraints on their power found therein, and violate the sovereign rights of individual citizens with impunity.

Those with the temerity to speak up in protest at all the mayhem done to our Constitution, are considered kooks, and ‘conspiracy nuts.’ They are labeled dangerous, enemies of the state, potential ‘domestic terrorists,’ and placed on government ‘watch lists.’ The simple truth is that the once severely limited Federal government designed by our Founders, which most Patriots erroneously conflate with their love of country, no longer exists.

It hasn’t for at least a century, and those still of the mind that all we need to do to get it back, is to educate more sheeple to elect more R’s than D’s in the next election, are fooling themselves. The real power and control in the Federal government, rests with unelected bureaucrats who can’t be fired, and lobbyists who finance the mostly ineffectual politicians. After the Congressional political disasters of 2015, anyone looking forward to the election of 2016 to somehow right the Ship of State, is naïve beyond hope.

Go ahead and campaign and vote for your favorite ego. It is exceedingly unlikely that your rather insignificant single vote will make one bit of difference to the future of America, one way or the other, no matter who you vote for. Voting will never work; it will take another Revolution or Civil War (same thing) to regain any semblance of individual sovereignty and Liberty in this land.

When all else fails, as alas it must, and it comes time to get serious about throwing off our shackles once again, give me a call. I’ll gladly make muster to reprise the Declaration of Independence. Until then, forget about me legitimizing Incumbrepublocrat rule on these shores, by participating in their sham elections. Instead, I will continue to ignore, bob, and weave to elude any and all avoidable contact with the insufferable bastards.

Please consider joining me in dropping out, or at least debating whether we even need another government to replace it, when this one finally collapses… whatever finally triggers that long overdue event. 🙂 ◄Dave►

10 Responses to “My Stateless Mind”

  • jim says:

    I went from being a minarchist libertarian to an anarchist libertarian in 1995, when I invented my “assassination Politics” essay, and turned it into an essay. https://cryptome.org/ap.htm
    Prior to that, I was concerned that a truly libertarian/anarchist society would not be able to function, because such a society would not be able to defend itself against the predations of other non-libertarian/non-anarchist societies. Although I was not aware of him by name, or his book, I had the same concern as David Friedman, http://www.daviddfriedman.com/Machinery_3d_Edition/The%20Hard%20Problem%20II.htm , son of famous economist Milton Friedman, which he wrote into his book in 1973, updated 1989, and then in 2014.
    My AP idea made the idea of anarchy stable, and not chaotic.

  • I think I’ve generally been the most sympathetic to your anarchist leanings, at least as a principal and a vector. As a practical matter, I see two main failings in the current world.

    The first is population. We’re losing elbow room at an alarming rate, and I think anarchism with an unenlightened populace is in immediate fail in highly urban areas. I also foresee hordes immigrating to the more desirable real estate like something out of the Lord of the Rings.

    The second, as Bill addressed above, is that a power vacuum will be immediately filled, likely with whoever is most ruthless with whatever armament they possess.

    Granted, the latter problem may immediately resolve the former, but it makes for a messy utopia.

    • jim says:

      ” and I think anarchism with an unenlightened populace is in immediate fail in highly urban areas.”

      Instead, an AP-type system could operate quite effectively if only 1% of the population employs it. Do the math, with an example: The American Federal government probably collects about $3 trillion in taxes per year. If the people who paid those taxes donated 1% of their value, $30 billion, to an AP-fund, and if a killing cost an average of $100,000, that would be 300,000 deaths. Even if only 1% of this could be achieved, what do you believe the effects of 3,000 targeted killings would be?

      It wouldn’t matter about “highly urban areas”. The government could be easily dissolved if thousands of very specifically-selected people very-publicly die.

      And when government is dissolved, individual citizens would not be deterred from possessing, and using, weapons.

  • jim says:

    I look at it this way. The current system has huge disadvantages, but we tend to ignore them since we are so used to them: We think of it as “normal”, for very obvious reasons. Government killed about 250 million people in the 20th century if you include wars. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democide

    Unless you think that is somehow acceptable, even good, you should be willing to consider the possibility that the AP system would kill fewer, perhaps far fewer people in the same time frame.
    Would it be legitimate to choose the current system if it killed more people? Or would we be morally obligated to choose a lower-death system if it were available and would work?

    • ◄Dave► says:

      Would it be legitimate to choose the current system if it killed more people? Or would we be morally obligated to choose a lower-death system if it were available and would work?

      Profound question, Jim! Hopefully, it will be thought provoking hereabouts, among those making moral arguments against AP. 😉 ◄Dave►

      • jim says:

        I keep asking people to suggest their own favorite solution to the problems which I claim AP would solve. I’ve never heard a credible, sincere solution.
        Something like, ‘I don’t like AP, I’d prefer they just fix the current system’ isn’t very credible, if they can’t explain how to actually FIX the system.
        My standards for their proposed solution aren’t very high, but I still have never heard anything.

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