“As ye sow…” by Robert Gore

Our deranged world is a product of deranged minds.

Philosophy begins with invariably difficult questions. Why am I here? What is the purpose of life? Is there a god or gods? What is right and what is wrong? How should groups of people be organized and function together? Ironically, when such questions are infrequently asked, when philosophy is generally ignored or disparaged, as it is now, is when it’s needed the most.

Political philosophy is the branch that addresses the question of how coercive power is to be distributed in a society. It’s a knotty issue, but one question provides clarification, enabling further analysis and leading to useful conclusions. Who owns a political unit’s resources? This question differentiates between governments that protect individual rights and property and those that don’t. It also highlights a key problem: on planet earth, every government falls into the latter category.

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The United States’ founding documents pay tribute to individual rights and private properly. Some of the founders may have thought they were establishing a government subordinated to protection of individual rights, which would have been an historical first. However, none thought such a government would be easy to maintain, and their fears were borne out. The US government places prominently on the inglorious list of governments claiming ownership over everything within their dominion, defined as any place where they can exercise their coercive power.

To those who say the institution of inviolate private property still exists in the US, what asset can the US government not seize? The income tax gives it first claim on income. No real estate is exempt from eminent domain. Intellectual property claims are at the sufferance of the patent, trademark, and copyright authorities. Financial assets held within the banking system can be “bailed in,” and plans are afoot to ban cash. The already extensive range of assets subjected to civil asset forfeiture continues to expand. More ominously, assets can be seized from parties never adjudicated guilty. Conscription grants to the government the lives of the conscripted. The US government is no exception to the general rule, nothing is inviolate except perhaps a person’s thoughts, and undoubtedly it’s working on that.

Individuals who assert the right to initiate aggression against whomever they choose are philosophically unhinged, candidates for an asylum or a penitentiary. Rejecting the first principle that must guide human interaction—that no one may rightfully initiate force against another person—such individuals have no rational foundation for their thoughts or actions. The “garbage in” of their philosophical premises produces “garbage out” emotional states, mental processes, and ultimately, lives. Having abandoned reason for coercion and violence, reality becomes a chaotic, incomprehensible void.

Governments’ coercive power allow them to take: might makes right. A philosophy that recognized a right of some individuals to steal from others fails on first principles; there is no logical distinction possible between the privileged and the subjugated. Does the aggregation of individuals into a unit which calling itself a government give them a right which none of them have individually? One could say that the aggregate was for the protection of its constituents’ persons, property, and rights, but a government so limited is acting as their constituents’ subordinate agent, exercising and enhancing their right of self-defense. Efforts have been made, notably the American experiment, but no government has ever been restricted in this manner.

No matter its guiding “ism,” every government has granted itself the power to initiate violence against its citizens. Just because the ruling agglomerate asserts this privilege doesn’t render it philosophically valid. What it does is legitimate the initiation of violence for any and all causes—domestic and foreign—the government deems proper.

Having violated the first principle of nonaggression, nothing can stop that philosophical default from trickling down to the subject population. The ragged thief who holds up a liquor store lacks the polish and articulation of the politician who asserts the government’s first claim on a nation’s production, the central banker who depreciates its currency, or the general bent on global dominance who wages offensive wars, but philosophically they’re soul mates. In fact, the thief has a moral one up on the others: he doesn’t claim to be protecting the values he destroys.

Millions have decried the violence that prevented Milo Yiannopoulos from speaking at the University of California at Berkeley, just as millions on the other side decried mostly illusory violence among Trump supporters during the campaign. However, not one in a thousand of those denouncing the violence as violations of fundamental civil liberties denounce the daily violations of fundamental liberties visited upon them by their own government. America’s corruption is so complete that those who insist that they are not fodder for the government, that their lives are their own, and that the only proper government is one subordinated to the protection of their individual rights—and maintain positions consistent with those principles—could hold a convention and not fill a high-school gym.

This small group is the victim of a terrifying pincer movement from above and below. When a society abandons itself to violence, “legal” and otherwise, it abandons itself to mindless irrationality driven by hate and antipathy towards every positive value. Violence is not a means to any end other than destruction and death; violence itself is the end. Humanity has been fed the same tripe for centuries: noble ends justify evil means. Violation of the first principle—the stricture against initiated aggression—bars consideration of the purported ends. A “discussion” with a gun is no discussion. Violence exercised in self-defense protects positive values, but when violence is initiated, destruction, death, and the depraved pleasure of loathsome minds are its only ends.

An individual who claims by word or deed the right to initiate violence—and the consequent rights to subjugate, injure, and kill—is a rabid, deranged, and dangerous animal. A government that asserts that right is a pack. In self-defense, the virtuous, if they are to protect their liberty, rights, and lives, must quarantine or kill the rabid. A necessary corollary of the stricture against initiated aggression is that we have the right to use all means necessary to defend ourselves from it—with pity, perhaps, but no remorse.

The chaos, the terror, of our deteriorating world is a true and faithful reflection of souls abandoned to hate. The free mind and its methods—intrepid curiosity, truth, and logic—stand as their ultimate enemy. If those who would oppose this destruction and death abandon their souls, they become the mindless evil they opposed. Those who defend their rights, values, and lives without surrendering their morality will rebuild from the rubble the kind of world in which they deserve to live. They will do so unobstructed—hate inevitably leads to its own destruction.

WHEN THE LIGHT WAS ALLOWED TO SHINE

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48 responses to ““As ye sow…” by Robert Gore

  1. Well said yet again.

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  2. Couldn’t disagree with you more deeply. We’re not living in the same world obviously. Some men have to make the hard decisions in life to overcome the consequences of philosophical consciousness objectors like yourself

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    • Explain.

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      • I would be nice if people explained their vague assertions, eh? I’m totally guessing, but perhaps an “atheist”?
        Seems like some folks wake up in the matrix and can’t make any sense of it all, but they just KNOWS it can’t about our Creator God. Give them some time.

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    • I re-read your column and realized I was not responding to what you wrote. Ignore my original comment. I do believe we are in a “time of change” and no one can possibly know with certainty where our western society anchored by judeo christian values is headed. If we can re-orient our children to the value of independent critical thought we may still have a chance for the future.

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  3. Conscientious

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  4. “Those who defend their rights, values, and lives without surrendering their morality will rebuild from the rubble the kind of world in which they deserve to live. ”
    Are we talking Civil War II here? Or something less? Maybe a peaceful solution?

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  5. Pingback: “As ye sow…” by Robert Gore – The way I see things …

  6. I think violence is inevitable; it’s already happening. Morally, the correct distinction is between initiated aggression and self-defense, and the latter will almost certainly entail violence in response to the former.

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  7. I have seen this by Andrew Breitbart (from 3/12) more than once recently:

    Liked by 1 person

  8. “. . . the only proper government is one subordinated to the protection of their individual rights”
    How is that subordination to be accomplished? This article (which I’ve linked in my comments a number of times) addresses that question, philosophically, in some detail. I can find no flaw in its argument, which is – to summarize very briefly – that such subordination is logically impossible. May I respectfully request, Mr. Gore, that you tell me what I’ve overlooked?

    “I don’t have to tell you that we owe no morality to those who hold us under a gun.”
    — John Galt (Atlas Shrugged)

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    • Your article has been on the to read list for a long time and I’m finally going to read it. Will report back with comments when finished.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I read “POP culture.” One of my favorite tricks in a discussion is to grant the other side everything they assert and go from there, and that’s what I’ll do concerning consent and sovereignty. No government has ever existed that had the consent of every person in its jurisdiction, and thus sovereignty, to the extent it is exercised over the unwilling, has been unjust. So let’s get right to anarchism.

      Without government, its traditional self-defense function is left to individuals. Each individual exercises that function, but only that individual is subject to his or her jurisdiction, so to speak. This being a free society, individuals would be free to contract with other individuals or companies that provide defensive functions. The question arises: who enforces those contracts, and what happens if the provider breaches the contract–takes the money but fails to provide the promised defense? Adjudicating disputes and enforcing contracts has also been a traditional function of governments. Under pure anarchism, where each person has jurisdiction only over himself or herself, an enforceable contract is an oxymoron, because it takes two parties to contract but each party can only exercise jurisdiction over himself or herself.

      Any number of individuals can voluntarily agree to set up some sort of mechanism to enforce contracts, but that enforcement mechanism will be necessarily separate from any of those individuals. It will have to have a power to adjudicate disputes and levy some sort of penalty, even if that penalty is just a prohibition on further contracting by the breaching party and exclusion from the group in the future. This is starting to sound like government, maybe a just and rational government, but government nonetheless, and one that is apparently based on the consent of those who choose it.

      Mr. Smith says: “[T]hose who wish to delgate some of their rights to a government are free to do so, provided they do not violate the rights of dissenters who choose not to endorse their government.” Doesn’t that just take you back to square one? The problem for any government, even a hypothetically just government, is not the people who voluntarily accept it, and presumably voluntarily pay for it and abide by its rules, but those who don’t. He terms those who make the limited government case “minarchists,” but isn’t anarchy just minarchy taken to its logical extreme: one individual serving as his or her own extremely limited government?

      From that scale on up, each voluntarily governmental unit faces the problem: what to do with people within whatever it claims as it geographical jurisdiction who refuse to accept or pay for its protection, or who choose not to follow its laws. Smith’s statement seems to imply that “dissenters” will reject governance and then go peaceably about their business, but what if they don’t? For the government that has been voluntarily accepted to perform the functions for which it was presumably formed–self-defense, adjudication, and enforcement of the voluntarily chosen laws–it necessarily has to act against people who implicitly or explicitly reject its jurisdiction by violating its security or laws. That sounds a lot like exercising sovereignty. I do not claim to have the answer to this conundrum. I think it’s at the heart of what I called “the knotty problem” of the distribution of coercive power, a problem that has bedeviled political philosphers for centuries. I am, however, skeptical that individualized government, or anarchism, is the solution.

      Your move.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I read, and generally agree. Individual anarchism must be subject to family and community. We are social animals and only exist in a social atmosphere.

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  9. Well said; sad but true. Puzzled about your last sentence though. Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, etc. had no problems butchering millions. Those that were slaughtered didn’t feel “unobstructed”, nor will millions in the future when this empire goes through its death throws. It’s hard for me to believe in the inevitability of virtue when the aggressors have such powerful, and historically unprecedented, tools of oppression at their disposal.

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    • Good question. I will refer to Atlas Shrugged. While it may seem malevolence is all powerful, as Rand noted, it always requires the virtue and values of its victims. Without them, malevolence is utterly incapable of anything but destruction and death. As such, those who defend themselves, deny the malevolent their minds and moral sanction, and allow them to experience the full force of their own impotence and incompetence and its inevitable end (look at what happened to the tyrants you listed and their societies) will be in a positon to rebuild the kind of world in which they want and deserve to live. It doesn’t happen as neatly or quickly as it did in Atlas Shrugged, but historically tyranny has self-destructed, although it has, to date, rarely been replaced with that kind of world. In the present time, that will be our job, and perhaps that our children and grandchildren. Teach them well.

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  10. Bob: You make me proud to be a human being, not just in the company of my “lessers” who, as Rand so powerfully reminded all, remain impotent without our sanction, but of our “betters.”

    You fall into the latter category.

    Dave

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  11. I posted “As Ye Sew…” on Inflection Point for a Sunday read. Attendant credit and links are included.

    Straight line logic; truth!

    HATE/”PREJUDICE HURTS THOSE IT’S DIRECTED AT. MORE INSIDIOUS, IS DAMAGE DONE TO THE PREJUDICED THEMSELVES. REJECTING LOVE, IT DENIES US OUR HIGHER SELVES AND MAKES IMPOSSIBLE THE COMMUNITY OF MAN. IT INHIBITS UNIVERSAL CONSCIOUSNESS EN-CODDED IN OUR DNA AND THWARTS HUMAN EVOLUTION.” – https://notionalvalue.blogspot.com/2013/03/prejudice-separates-us-from-truth.html

    As Asimov said,

    “Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent.”

    QUESTION EVERYTHING!

    Thank you for your efforts.

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  12. Since this might become an extended back and forth, I’ll respond in the main thread to keep the indentation from getting excessive.

    You have skillfully exploited the one weakness in Smith’s argument; his concession of the ‘conventional’ definition of government, or, more properly speaking, the State: “a human community that (successfully) claims the monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force within a given territory.” Although this is a mostly (but not entirely) accurate description of government / State as it presently exists, I maintain that it does not capture the essence, which is: an entity (necessarily meaning, in practice, some individuals) granted license to perform acts which would otherwise be considered criminal. For instance, taxation – a word conspicuous by its absence from your response. With the foregoing in mind . . .

    >an enforceable contract is an oxymoron, because it takes two parties to contract but each party can only exercise jurisdiction over himself or herself.
    Almost all legal contracts now contain clauses to the effect that ‘this contract shall be governed / adjudicated under the laws of [some government / State, and neither party is necessarily subject to that territorial jurisdiction outside the scope of the contract]’. Why can the parties not agree to be bound by the rules / procedures of a non-State, non-territorial organization?

    >even if that penalty is just a prohibition on further contracting by the breaching party and exclusion from the group in the future. This is starting to sound like government . . .
    No. It is only exercising the right of any person(s) to not interact with any other person(s).

    >isn’t anarchy just minarchy taken to its logical extreme: one individual serving as his or her own extremely limited government?
    No. It is rejection of the idea that it is legitimate and necessary for some individuals to be granted exception from morality.

    >For the government that has been voluntarily accepted to perform the functions for which it was presumably formed – self-defense, adjudication, and enforcement of the voluntarily chosen laws – it necessarily has to act against people who implicitly or explicitly reject its jurisdiction by violating its security or laws. That sounds a lot like exercising sovereignty.
    If the violation of security or laws involves violence, action against the violator is self-defense. Otherwise, broadly speaking, it is breach of contract, which would be dealt with by exclusion and / or refusal of further interaction with the violator. No “sovereignty” (i.e. unaccountable final arbiter) is necessary.

    >I do not claim to have the answer to this conundrum. I think it’s at the heart of what I called “the knotty problem” of the distribution of coercive power, a problem that has bedeviled political philosophers for centuries.
    Check your premises. You are assuming that “coercive power” – legitimized aggression – must be distributed. The “answer” is that it must be abolished. This reality is what has bedeviled political philosophers – most of whom, historically, have been apologists for aggressors seeking legitimacy.

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    • idkr,
      I’ll just deal with your last paragraph, because I find it the most problematic. Coercive power is coercive power, whether it is in the hands of a government which thereby claims it is legitimate, or anyone else. I do not assume it must be distributed, I assume it is distributed, widely, and cannot be abolished. Some will wield it offensively and unjustly, and some will not, confining its use to self-defensive. The problem that bedevils political philosophers is how to protect the latter group from the former. Anarchy does not strike me as a solution. Leaving self-defense in the hands of individuals renders the individual vulnerable to the first immoral gang. If there is a solution, of which I’m not certain there is, it will be a collective solution that involves the collective performing functions that have historically been performed by governments. Yes, if I assume that coercive power–governmental or non-government–is abolished, it makes everything a lot easier and may render some of the practical objections I raised moot. However, I don’t believe that the power to coerce will ever be abolished.

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  22. Reblogged this on sentinelblog.

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  23. They will do so unobstructed—hate inevitably leads to its own destruction. yes it does, but that can take a long [?generations] time and what we’re left with may be ‘close-to-wuthless.’ Nevertheless, good to masticate about.

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  25. >I don’t believe that the power to coerce will ever be abolished.
    If by “power” you mean “ability”, I agree. However, I am skeptical of – no, I flatly, adamantly reject – the idea that granting some individuals a moral license – i.e. “power” – to coerce is any solution. If the individual is vulnerable to the “immoral gang”, is the individual not far more vulnerable to the “moral” gang? And “Leaving self-defense in the hands of individuals” implies that collective action for self-defense is impossible without coercion. I can’t believe you really mean that.

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    • ikdr,

      Collective action for self-defense would involve at the least self-defense against subjugation from without or insurrection from within, which nobody argues is not wholly legitimate, and enforcement, apprehension, adjudication, and punishment against those who implicitly or explicitly reject the collective’s jurisdiction and its voluntarily chosen criminal and civll laws (and not just exclusion from the collective for those who breach contracts, which does nothing for the aggrieved party–the collective must also collect damages and retribution for that party). The collective, in whole or in part, must maintain all these functions, which implicitly flow from the phrase “collective self-defense.” In other words, just because you do away with “sovereign government” doesn’t mean you can do away with the functions sovereign governments perform.

      We can say that the collective is not exercising sovereignty and that it can be done without coercion, but I fail to see how a voluntary collective for self-defense performs its function of protecting those who have accepted its jurisdiction from those who reject it without performing the above functions and consequently without exercising coercive power against the latter group. If you want to call that exercise self-defense, fine, but all those “self-defensive” functions are necessary for this voluntrily collective to actually self-defend. In the real world, my prediction would be that under virtually all circumstances that becomes sovereignty and what you and I would recognize as coercion. That is not based on a theoretical rejection of the concept of noncoercive collective action for self-defense, but rather the exigencies of such self-defense and the realities of human nature. Not the human nature of those who accept the collective and its rules (although I believe that sooner or later whatever “self-defensive” power is exercised will corrupt those who exercise it), but those who don’t.

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  27. Thank you for questioning the status quo assumption of government legitimacy. Thank you for extolling the virtue of the Non-Aggression Principle. “Reeducation” is the purview of leftists, but I do think we’d all be a lot better off if some of the violent #RESIST groups were made to watch the eight minute Philosophy of Liberty video (it’s on YouTube) until their actions matched their rhetoric and they cease fighting for peace. They’ve been nurtured for a decade and now they’re triggered into violent explosions, presumably in defense of social justice. Their insane vitriol is reminiscent of Two Minutes Hate from George Orwell’s 1984. Scary stuff. Fortunately, the Non-Aggression Principle is not a philosophy of total pacifism. The principle of self defense is fully incorporated into the NAP, which does not allow the initiation of force, but it’s completely on board with opening a #10 can of Whoop Ass on those who engage in assault. I’m doing my best to avoid situations where I might encounter their violent temper tantrums in the hope that their violence will wear itself out, but there is no sign of that yet.

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  28. Mr. Gore:
    First of all, I want to thank you for taking the time to engage in this dialogue. It is much more interesting than some things I need to get done and have been putting off, so if my responses are delayed it’s because I’m forcing myself to attend to more mundane affairs. And I know that you’re busy, so I won’t impose on your time by saying “read this article / book” in lieu of composing (or at least quoting, as briefly as possible) a specific and particular answer to your points. For now, I’ll address just one of them, because I think it’s where we’ve been talking past each other:

    >my prediction would be that under virtually all circumstances [self-defensive functions become] sovereignty . . .
    I am unclear on your definition of “sovereignty”. How does it align with (from Smith’s article): “Virtually every defender of government – from John Locke to Thomas Jefferson to Ludwig von Mises – has recognized coercive taxation to be an essential component of sovereignty, a power without which no true government can exist.”?

    >what you and I would recognize as coercion.
    If I may employ a somewhat crude but illustrative example: Suppose I point a gun at you and say: “Give me your wallet, or else”. Is this a coercive act on my part? Suppose you then reach into your pocket and produce, not your wallet, but your gun, with which you shoot me. Is that a coercive act on your part? This may sound like a semantic quibble, but it is the core of what I am trying to get at when I admit coercion cannot be abolished, but insist that legitimized coercion must be abolished.

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    • IKDR: I can only respond that the issue you raise is THE issue separating the ideal of “Anarchy” versus, what is termed in some circles as the ideal of, “Minarchy.” The idea of no government (no coercion) versus limited government “mini-coercion.”

      I think we both agree that the initiation of force, or the deceit embodied by fraud – either by intention, accident, or “misunderstanding” – i.e., through failure to properly understand, are the means through which “coercion,” which I define as the potential obtaining of a value without the owner’s consent, occurs.

      If I support Anarchy, then I contract with a private entity to support me in instances of my defense – my defense against force or fraud as defined above.

      If I support Minarchy, I support a strictly limited government, providing an umbrella under which I subordinate my “anarchy” which is, by some “granting” of limited authority, agreed upon by those under whatever “jurisdiction” – determined by whatever means, throughout the location in which you and I might live.

      I won’t rehash the arguments in support of either position, as, judging from your post(s) you likely have considered them all. What I will state is this:
      If Anarchy be your choice, I would suggest that because of human nature, you and all those who have endorsed same will, one day, end up with but one “private” entity with whom most individuals will have voluntarily contracted. A contract subordinating their retaliatory response to the alleged violation of their rights. Until such time, you and I, for example, will perhaps contract with either no one, and choose to “go it alone,” or with different providers of “Remedy Solutions.” Upon our submission of an alleged violation of our rights by the other, should our respective providers disagree on legitimacy or remedy, thus providing NO resolution of either or both of our alleged injustices, what will then likely occur, if the initiation of coercion is to be avoided, is that our providers, in turn, will have contracted with an even more-encompassing provider of “Remedy Resolution Solutions. This repeated process will potentially occur until such time as there is but one remaining all-encompassing provider of “Final Remedy Resolution Solutions.”

      At which point we will all have a “final solution.”

      Speaking personally, I support trying to avoid such a finality, prior to its occurrence, rather than after it has occurred.

      Respectfully,

      Dave

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      • “The idea of a strictly limited constitutional State was a noble experiment that failed, even under the most favorable and propitious circumstances. If it failed then, why should a similar experiment fare any better now? No, it is the conservative laissez-fairist, the man who puts all the guns and all the decision-making power into the hands of the central government and then says, ‘Limit yourself’; it is he who is truly the impractical utopian.”

        — Murray Rothbard, quoted in Rothbard and Rockwell on Conservatives and the State

        “Anarchists did not try to carry out genocide against the Armenians in Turkey; they did not deliberately starve millions of Ukrainians; they did not create a system of death camps to kill Jews, gypsies, and Slavs in Europe; they did not fire-bomb scores of large German and Japanese cities and drop nuclear bombs on two of them; they did not carry out a ‘Great Leap Forward’ that killed scores of millions of Chinese; they did not attempt to kill everybody with any appreciable education in Cambodia; they did not launch one aggressive war after another; they did not implement trade sanctions that killed perhaps 500,000 Iraqi children.

        In debates between anarchists and statists, the burden of proof clearly should rest on those who place their trust in the state. Anarchy’s mayhem is wholly conjectural; the state’s mayhem is undeniably, factually horrendous.”

        — Robert Higgs, quoted in How Would “X” Work in a Free Society?

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        • No one can argue against the facts of history! Rothbard and others make a seemingly, “rational” argument. I am certainly willing to “allow” anarchy within “subdivisions” of an overall minarchy. Observation of the result(s) can then determine further “experimentation.”

          However, I see the institution of an overarching universal anarchy, as a “top down” solution to the “facts of history” that you cite, as one that cannot be successfully implemented. The political “virtue” of anarchy could only be so “imposed” if all human beings were “virtuous.” Being that man has volition, ALL human beings will NEVER be virtuous, and to the extent it is thought possible, anarchy must be “tried” within a strictly-limited minarchy. The “remedy” for whatever results are forthcoming can then be used to either widen said anarchy, or be limited within the political framework under which it was attempted in the first place.

          I am certainly willing to consider I am wrong, but baring a further evolution of the nature of human beings, those who would wish to fashion “shortcuts” to recognizing the absolute sovereignty of the individual, in pursuit of whatever, will ALWAYS attempt to do so.

          Perhaps the power of the freely-acting individual will be enough to thwart such fashioning and provide sufficient deterrence, but, in my judgment, that will have to be demonstrated. I am certainly willing to attempt it within the context I have described.

          Meanwhile, as RIchard Maybury admonishes, “do all you have agreed to do, and do not encroach on other persons or their property.”

          Respectfully,

          Dave

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          • You argue: “The political ‘virtue’ of anarchy could only be so ‘imposed’ if all human beings were ‘virtuous.’ Being that man has volition, ALL human beings will NEVER be virtuous….”

            I’d argue the opposite. The fact that all humans are not virtuous does not imply that some of us are perfectly virtuous, and it certainly does not imply that the most virtuous among us are controlling the levers of power in government. I think a good argument could be made that our rulers have been far less virtuous than the mean lately.

            I’d conclude the less government, the better. We’ve been conditioned to believe that there must be some limits on the limits we place on government. In other words, the optimal should be some form of minarchy, but our nation was founded as a minarchy and look where that’s gotten us. Give them an inch and they think they’re rulers. Checking my government school instilled preconceptions at the door and applying only logic and reason, I see no practical limit on the maxim that the less government we have, the better we’ll be served.

            Humans are not perfect, so human institutions will not be perfect. We shouldn’t measure any proposed changes against the standard of perfection because it’ll always fail that test, and the test is very unfair because the status quo is far from perfect. We should only ask if the proposed system is better than what we have now, and in my opinion that bar is set very low. A system with no central control (aka government) will not be perfect. There are bad people in the world. I prefer to deal with those bad people on my own, without the “help” of the bad people in government who have a monopoly on the use of force and with whom I have no recourse beyond submission.

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          • To paraphrase my initial question, how is the “strict limitation” of an “overarching universal minarchy” to be accomplished? The argument made in the article I linked in conjunction with that question – such limitation is logically impossible – has so far not been refuted – or, here, even addressed.

            “. . . do not encroach on other persons or their property.”
            Except, I presume, when imposing / collecting taxes.

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            • ikdr: As I indicated, I cannot refute the history you cite, nor ironically, can you. The case you are making, and all anarchists make, is that anarchy is the only MORAL state of existence to which an individual should logically strive to protect and preserve. It is a contradiction.

              When anyone attempts to point it out, the anarchist replies with a theoretical response whereby justice is served when “encroachment on other persons of their property” or someone has failed to “do all they have agreed to do,” is “anarchically” dealt with. The violator of rights being apprehended, and incarcerated, subjected to litigation/trial, punishment, and remedy, by what amounts to, a contracted-with group of what I would term, “noble vigilantees.”

              Failing to see them as such requires that I ignore an aspect of human nature that always gives rise to such human exhibitions. Have you ever seen the movie “Hombre,” starring Paul Newman and Richard Boone? There is a scene early in the movie where Boone wants to get on a stage in order to rob it, and he is informed by the stage-line employee that all the tickets have been sold and there is no room. I recommend you view it. As a matter-of-fact, I recommend the movie itself. It is actually a morality play, and an “enjoyable” indictment of the morality of sacrifice, all while it tries to denigrate “selfishness.”

              I would be interested in your response should you choose to watch it. My email address is dwlievert@q.com. I enjoy Robert’s cite and its visitors such as yourself.

              Dave

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  29. ikdr: In thinking further about my post above, it has spawned an idea. I am going to raise the issue of “anarchy” vs “minarchy” (“limited” – though properly held with suspicion and contempt) government), at a future meeting of a group to which I frequent, “Liberty on the Rocks.”

    I envision an introduction my me, including an introduction to the movie “Hombre,” and then present on a screen the scene that I referenced. I shall then offer my assessment of what it demonstrates, followed by a number of questions, that will, no doubt, prompt discussion.

    The issue of anarchy vs minarchy I acknowledge, as not having been satisfactorily resolved in my own mind, though I lean toward, and it could be argued, I have “invested in,” minarchy. I am certainly willing to concede at being in error if I discover that which I do not yet understand.

    Thank you for your on-going perspective(s).

    Dave

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