Peaceful Anarchy: Imagine A Society Without the State

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"I
am an anarchist. I suppose you came here, the most of you, to see
what a real, live anarchist looked like. I suppose some of you expected
to see me with a bomb in one hand and a flaming torch in the other,
but are disappointed in seeing neither. If such has been your ideas
regarding an anarchist, you deserved to be disappointed. Anarchists
are peaceable, law-abiding people. What do anarchists mean when
they speak of anarchy? Webster gives the term two definitions – chaos
and the state of being without political rule. We cling to the latter
definition. Our enemies hold that we believe only in the former."
~ Lucy Parsons

"If
we look at the record of mass murder, exploitation, and tyranny
levied on society by governments over the ages, we need not be loath
to abandon the Leviathan State and … try freedom." ~ Murray N. Rothbard

Anarchy in
its purest form is based on peaceful behavior and voluntaryism in
a stateless society, while government is based on aggression, theft,
force, and deceit. These two systems are completely opposite. The
only moral social system worth having has to adhere to the ideas
of non-aggression, private property, free and voluntary exchange,
and self-responsibility. This ideology is based entirely on the
individual as sovereign. A political order where the individual
is not sovereign, such as what we have now in this country, is the
type of system that eventually leads to tyranny and serfdom. We
are already far along in that process.

In my opinion,
peaceful anarchy as a near perfect social system must go unchallenged,
because anarchy is based on the truism that the individual is sovereign.
Philosophically, anarchy is the only workable system if freedom
is the desired goal. All other political systems are based on a
top-down structure, with those in charge holding power over all
others. This type of structure, which is our current political system,
is simply one of force, and force is the antithesis of liberty.

While to me
this seems to be not only simple but also logical, to most others
this thinking is blasphemous. The mere mention of anarchy causes
grave reactions from those from the "elite" class to the
common laborer. No one it seems understands the simple concept of
anarchy, and certainly can't grasp the concept of anarchy as a viable
social system. This says a lot about the "success" of
the government indoctrination prisons called "public"
schools. Obviously, the worship and acceptance of the State is now
the primary driver in the American thought process. This is unfortunate.

Those who believe
that anarchy is chaos without justice fail to understand that anarchists
simply want to be left alone. The fact that they want to be left
alone should naturally convey that they also don't want to infringe
upon the liberty of others. Self-rule means that one's life is directed
from within instead of being controlled from without. This concept
should not be foreign to any man who desires to enjoy a free life.
But it is this simple notion that escapes so many.

Obviously,
simple humans are a mixture of good and bad, so believing that a
stateless society will remedy all ills is silly. The idea of anarchy
assumes that most will not aggress against others, and that voluntary
cooperation will be a primary factor for success. This of course
seems impossible given our circumstances today, but any critical
thought should help to relieve the fears of most.

If we all were
self-reliant and self sufficient, if no forced welfare existed,
if taxation was abolished, if positive law was not a part of society,
would the manner of men change? If no standing armies were allowed,
would wars cease? If the only act of force tolerated were for self-defense,
would crime lessen? If none could benefit at the expense of another,
would cooperation replace extortion? If no man ruled another, would
there be incentive for peaceful and voluntary behavior? In my view,
the answer to all these questions is a resounding yes! Would this
kind of society be perfect … Of course not, because people are not
perfect. No societal system can be perfect. But a system without
the state would at least offer us the best chance for a long and
peaceful existence, and one without the chains of governmental tyranny.

Our society
has long been force-fed the propaganda that we cannot survive and
prosper without the State. Our training in such matters begins at
a very early age and continues throughout our lives. The transformation
from a somewhat free society to our current one of servitude has
taken a long time, but it has happened nonetheless. Now, most in
this country are knowingly or unknowingly dependent on the government
in one fashion or another, but many more thrive exclusively on government
largess, and due to government protectionist practices. Did this
happen accidentally or did it happen by design? I think the latter
is the obvious answer to this question.

Given that
the masses of people in this country believe so strongly in "their"
government, what has that government done to deserve this confidence?
What has the state brought us? What has been accomplished due to
our political system these past two hundred plus years?

  • Standing
    armies
  • Continuous
    war and mass murder
  • Massive
    progressive taxation
  • State-sponsored
    welfare
  • Eminent
    Domain

  • Central
    banking and the Federal Reserve
  • Destruction
    of our money
  • The "War
    on Drugs"
  • The largest
    prison system in the world with the highest incarceration rate
  • Government
    schooling
  • FDA
  • EPA
  • TSA
  • NSA
  • CIA
  • FBI
  • USA PATRIOT
    Act
  • Military
    Commissions Act
  • Killer Drones
  • Guantanamo
    Bay
  • Torture
  • Rendition
  • Police brutality
  • Imperialism
  • Wiretapping
    and spying
  • Illegal
    searches
  • Bailouts
  • Monopoly
  • Recessions
  • Depressions

I could of
course go on and on as this is a partial list, but I think the picture
is clear. If this is what the State produces, how could a stateless
society be worse? As I see things, it could not! Just imagine how
different life would be if all the horrible things mentioned above
were removed from our society. Imagine peace? Imagine a country
of non-aggressive individuals working strictly through voluntary
efforts? Imagine that all your property, including your own body,
is yours and yours alone to do with as you see fit? Just imagine?

Murray
N. Rothbard
was one of the staunchest defenders of a stateless
society, and presented here
a great argument for anarchism as a social system. Once those skeptical
souls who hunger for authority instead of freedom are shown the
way to clear those imaginary anarchy hurdles, progress has a chance
to flourish. This is no easy task, but if enough are shown the way,
could it happen? Could it be successful? I think that it could,
but major obstacles would first have to be removed.

The
obstacles I speak of are those that allow one to prosper at the
expense of another. If all government forced welfare were eliminated,
all would then be forced to take care of themselves and their own.
This alone would make a huge difference in the minds of the masses.
Immediately, self-reliance and self-responsibility would become
necessary for life to continue. When the majority of society is
self-responsible, liberty is the natural result, and becomes the
driving force of that society.

Accepting the
idea of sovereignty of the individual brings much responsibility,
but that responsibility leads to a freer society. A freer society
leads to a society based upon voluntary cooperation. Voluntary cooperation
is the basis for free markets. Voluntary cooperation and free markets
leads directly to prosperity.

It is time
to break the chains of government and try freedom. It is time to
throw off rule by the few for rule by self. Government has failed
and failed miserably every time it has been tried. Why then continue
along this path of failure? Why continue to allow rule over of the
many by the few?

A stateless
society has not the power to destroy the individual. I say abolish
the State!

August
1, 2011

Gary
D. Barnett [send him mail]
is president of Barnett Financial Services, Inc., in Lewistown,
Montana.

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