You can call me Bobby, I run a little site called Thinksquad. I have an associates degree in industrial design from the Art Institute of Seattle. A bachelors of arts from the University of Washington, and graduated with a double major in philosophy and political science from Rutgers University. I also spent 10 years in the Air Force from 1994-2004, having spent five tours in Iraq and two tours in Afghanistan. I am now a strong advocate of the non-aggression principles, voluntaryism and peaceful parenting.
In any reasonably free society, these activities do not fall in the realm of political coercion. No government agency chooses who you are to marry and have children with, and punishes you with jail for disobeying their rulings. Voluntarism, incentive, mutual advantage – dare we say “advertising”? – all run the free market of love, sex and marriage.
What about your career? Did a government official call you up at the end of high school and inform you that you were to become a doctor, a lawyer, a factory worker, a waiter, an actor, a programmer – or a philosopher? Of course not. You were left free to choose the career that best matched your interests, abilities and initiative.
What about your major financial decisions? Each month, does a government agent come to your house and tell you exactly how much you should save, how much you should spend, whether you can afford that new couch or old painting? Did you have to apply to the government to buy a new car, a new house, a plasma television or a toothbrush?
No, in all the areas mentioned above – love, marriage, family, career, finances – we all make our major decisions in the complete absence of direct political coercion.
Thus – if anarchy is such an all-consuming, universal evil, why is it the default – and virtuous – freedom that we demand in order to achieve just liberty in our daily lives?
If the government told you tomorrow that it was going to choose for you where to live, how to earn your keep, and who to marry – would you fall to your knees and thank the heavens that you have been saved from such terrible anarchy – the anarchy of making your own decisions in the absence of direct political coercion?
Of course not – quite the opposite – you would be horrified, and would oppose such an encroaching dictatorship with all your might.
This is what I mean when I say that we consider anarchy to be an irreducible evil – and also an irreducible good. It is both feared and despised – and considered necessary and virtuous.
If you were told that tomorrow you would wake up and there would be no government, you would doubtless fear the specter of “anarchy.”
If you were told tomorrow that you would have to apply for a government permit to have children, you would doubtless fear the specter of “dictatorship,” and long for the days of “anarchy,” when you could decide such things without the intervention of political coercion.
Thus we can see that we human beings are deeply, almost ferociously ambivalent about “anarchy.” We desperately desire it in our personal lives, and just as desperately fear it politically.
Another way of putting this is that we love the anarchy we live, and yet fear the anarchy we imagine.
The media has been trained to attack anyone who questions the foundations of violent power. The equation is really very simple – so simple that it is always overlooked.
-If a man says that coercive wealth transfers –theft, in the vernacular – are wrong, then the media instantly attacks him for not caring about whoever is receiving the stolen money.
-For instance, if a man questions the morality and practicality of the welfare state, he will be immediately attacked for not caring about the poor.
-If he argues against government schools, then he clearly hates the fact that children get educated.
-If he defends free-trade, he is an immoral advocate for bloodsucking corporations.
-if he criticizes military budgets, he is a cowardly appeaser who wishes to surrender Fort Knox to Al Qaeda;
-if he holds people morally accountable for their actions, he is punishing them for their past mistakes and “playing the blame game”
-if he refuses to forgive unrepentant wrongdoers, he is nursing a grudge and so on.
-If he argues that adult relationships are voluntary, then he is viciously anti-community
-if he says that abuse should not be tolerated in relationships, then he is an intolerant absolutist bent on destroying all relationships…
This list can go on and on and on – and Lord knows it does, every day – but you get the point.
The existence of evil can never justify the existence of the State. If there is no evil, the State is unnecessary. If evil exists, the State is far too dangerous to be allowed to exist.