“Anarchism is not a romantic fable but the hardheaded realization, based on five thousand years of experience, that we cannot entrust the management of our lives to kings, priests, politicians, generals, and county commissioners.”~ Edward Abbey
First let me define what one of the most misinterpreted terms actually means. Most folks think disorder, chaos, lawlessness, violence and communist punks throwing Molotov cocktails in buildings when they hear the word Anarchist. Nothing can be further from the truth. An individualist anarchist believes in the idea of living in a stateless atmosphere absent of political force. Anarchism is the crazy notion that life should be conducted through voluntary interactions with other individuals within one’s own community. Anarchists despise living under any system that uses threats and coercion as a way of governing. Anarchism, in short, is peacefully participating in the complexity of living and being who you are unhindered from institutional threats of force.
Right before the financial collapse of 2008, I was, what is so commonly referred to as a Neocon. This is a modern-day conservative who believes that the government is great when Republicans are in office and horrible when Democrats are in. I believed that all wars were just even though I didn’t know why the wars were being fought or with who. It didn’t’ matter. I voted for George W. Bush because he said Jesus was his hero. I watched Fox News and thought I was being fed the truth. And as a former veteran, I believed that we should of been funding the military industrial-complex infinitely. I also believed that the “terrorists” hated Americans because of our freedoms. I fell for the limited government lies the GOP peddled out to their gullible electorate. I was that guy.
Then the 2008 financial collapse happened. How come CNBC didn’t warn us about this housing collapse? How come nobody in the media had a clue this was about to happen? Aren’t they suppose to be our watchdogs? Why did the so-called conservative president state that “I’ve abandoned free–market principles to save the free–market system”? Wasn’t this collapse caused by government meddling in the free-market in the first place? Why is the Fed artificially pushing the interest rates down? Doesn’t this hurt savings? Why did the same financial gods that helped cause this mess get a bailout? Isn’t this fascism? This wasn’t capitalism.
Damn it all to hell. I finally came to the conclusion that it’s all a scam. Politics is bullshit. Thanks to Lewrockwell.com for opening my eyes.
But what I finally discovered was that there were a few people out there trying to warn everyone about this bust. They were the great Anarcho-Capitalists like Ron Paul, Peter Schiff, Jim Rogers and Marc Faber. Peter Schiff was warning about the collapse a few years before it happened only to get laughed at by a bunch of jackass talking heads. You can watch it here. I came to the realization that truthtellers were not welcomed on mainstream media outlets or in political office. Voters are so used to being told lies that any truths that they do hear are immediately ridiculed or ignored. It’s easier to be content in lies than it is to accept reality. When someone does tell some kind of uncomfortable truth, like Ron Paul did in the 2008 Republican debate, you can expect them to get either booed, censored or chastised. (Watch it here)
The 2008 collapse alone, along with actions taken immediately following, put the final stamp on my skepticism of “government of the people, for the people and by the people.” So after a lot of reading and watching speeches from Ron Paul, I came to believe what the Irish philosopher, Gerald Casey, acknowledged in his wonderful little book called, Libertarian Anarchy: Against the State, that…
States are criminal organizations. All states, not just the obviously totalitarian or repressive ones…. I intend this statement to be understood literally and not as some form of rhetorical exaggeration. The argument is simple. Theft, robbery, kidnapping and murder are all crimes. Those who engage in such activities, whether on their own behalf or on behalf of others are, by definition, criminals. In taxing the people of a country, the state engages in an activity that is morally equivalent to theft or robbery; in putting some people in prison, especially those who are convicted of so-called victimless crimes or when it drafts people into the armed services, the state is guilty of kidnapping or false imprisonment; in engaging in wars that are other than purely defensive, or, even if defensive, when the means of defence employed are disproportionate and indiscriminate, the state is guilty of manslaughter or murder.
This sums up the essence of governments. We’ve been conditioned through government schools to believe that the State is good and we should obey its commands like good little citizens and never question their madness. People whose viewpoint falls outside the political parameter set by the Republican and Democrat vision are looked at with scornful eyes from the deluded masses. They look at Anarchism, Libertarianism and Voluntarism as a wicked and dangerous form of belief. And in an age of limited thinking and authoritarian worship, it’s no wonder most put their full trust in the brutal entity of the state instead of the peaceful interactions among their fellow people. But as Butler Shaffer points out, we can’t…
ignore the history of the state in visiting upon humanity the very death and destruction that its defenders insist upon as a rationale for political power. Those who condemn anarchy should engage in some quantitative analysis. In the twentieth century alone, governments managed to kill — through wars, genocides, and other deadly practices — some 200,000,000 men, women, and children. How many people were killed by anarchists during this period? Governments, not anarchists, have been the deadly “bomb-throwers” of human history!
Another venture that took me down to my philosophical conclusion was reading Murray Rothbard. This man was a giant in the liberty movement and wrote many books and essays on about everything under the sun, including: History, Economics, Political Theory, Utilitarianism, Anarchism and Sociology. The book that transformed my world outlook was For a New Liberty. In this one book, Rothbard laid out the greatest, logical explanation for living in a stateless society. He also wrote hundreds of essays in which you can read here.
What we do when it comes to political power, is we compartmentalize our morality. We don’t hold a group of people, like the State, to the same moral standards as we do an individual person. If a certain person took a machine gun and wiped out a group of people, we’d call that mass murder. But if the State does this, we call it war. And we justify it through mentally convincing ourselves that the innocent people over there are just “collateral damage” to our noble cause.
Anarchists understand that wars are fought to expand the power of the State. History informs us that the first casualty of war is the truth. We also recognize that the State only exists through the consent of the governed. To keep the support of the people, the State deploys a massive propaganda campaign to make sure the masses believe that their overlords are representing them. So they put gasoline on the patriotic fire by creating enemies that we must go in and conquer. This gets the Flag-wavers, unable to critically analyze events, to blindly chant “USA, USA, USA” , while the government ravages their freedoms, bank accounts and future prosperity. The State also rally’s up some tedious difference that causes debate within the two parties as to blind eyes to the bigger picture. This always works, just turn on the boob tube and see for yourself.
Today’s world is filled with empty people walking along life’s journey stripped of a soul and of their own mind. We need to recapture what makes us human again. Institutions like the State, work in ways to dehumanize all of us and they reduce us to nothing more than robotic machines. We’re told from birth to act a certain way, think a certain way, believe in this, vote for that, support this, abide by that…etc. We have to stop this madness if we have any hope for the integrity of the sovereign individual. Anarchism holds the individual as a sacred being that should be fully free to peacefully interact with others. Anarchism is the only moral idea that holds true to the principles of non-aggression, private property, free and voluntary exchange, and self-responsibility. And again, Shaffer explains…
‘Anarchy’ is an expression of social behavior that reflects the individualized nature of life. Only as living beings are free to pursue their particular interests in the unique circumstances in which they find themselves, can conditions for the well-being of all be attained. Anarchy presumes decentralized and cooperative systems that serve the mutual interests of the individuals comprising them, without the systems ever becoming their own reasons for being. It is this thinking, and the practices that result therefrom, that is alone responsible for whatever peace and order exists in society.”
Governments have failed miserably in the past century. War, genocide, slavery, political corruption, backroom deals, inflating our hard-earned currency, taxation without representation, and I could go on and on. All these immoral actions are conducted while at the same time mortgaging our future. Do you honestly think that we’d be worse off without a government? All governments are the enemy to the individual and nothing short of a stateless society would let people thrive to their full potential. This is when we’d finally capture the true essence of who we were meant to be. And ending with the words of Emma Goldman, “People have only as much liberty as they have the intelligence to want and the courage to take.”
To get a better grasp and a more in-depth analysis on how living in a stateless society is possible, read this article here by the greatest Anarchist philosopher of all time, Murray Rothbard. He answers the common questions like–Who would teach our kids? Who would build the roads? What would we do about criminals? Etc.
Here is a great reading list that every freedom loving person should devour. (Click Here)