Happily there’s no shortage of accounts of the devastation governments cause, and Lew Rockwell’s own The Fascist Threat is one of the strongest and most recent. However I’ve not read many that suggest what can be done to fix it. Given then that government is so utterly destructive of civilized society that it clearly has to be eliminated, how can that be done?
I suggest the first essential step is to recognize that nothing else will cut it. Partial pregnancy is not an option; “limited government” is an oxymoron and two and a quarter centuries of malignant growth confirm that even in America, it’s impossible. Government will always use such power as it has, to acquire more power; as fast as it can without provoking the fatal question “Government — who needs it?”
So that must be the aim: total abolition.
One further, vital objective: resurrection must be prevented. Imagine all government disappeared, today at 9.00 am. By noon, the shrieks will resound: Where’s my welfare check? By evening, Pols will be rushing to fill the void, respond to the demand, and by next week government will be back in place. Additionally, the will to govern is so powerful that Pols would strive to resurrect the corpse of government even if there were not a strident, popular demand for it. For both reasons, a plan for liberty must include a lock on the tomb. Once government is dead, it must stay dead.
The fix for these huge tasks is surprisingly simple: to abolish government, all of its ordinary employees must be motivated to quit their jobs, and to prevent resurrection all its clients and beneficiaries must be shown they can do better without it, and one program will suffice for both these vital tasks: universal re-education.
As de la Boëtie said, the one thing indispensable to government is support; and now that it can print its own money that doesn’t mean financial support, it means labor. Take away its employees, and it is totally helpless; in fact it ceases to exist, for it consists of nobody else. That’s the sine qua non of abolition; while there are soldiers willing to do grunt work for this monstrous Mafia, it will get by; when they are no longer willing, it will evaporate. That single change will do the whole job.
When everyone has come to learn the real nature of government and of individual liberty, the motivation to work for it will evaporate and the habit of begging it for goodies will disappear; self-reliance will be understood and a restored sense of morality and self-interest will cause employees to find honest work instead. It is quite easy to test this: assuming you, gentle Reader, are already convinced of the destructive and evil nature of government, would you work for it? — would you demand of it handouts, knowing how much wealthier you can become by honest trading in a free market? Of course not. So all that’s needed is to bring everyone else to the same level of understanding that you have now.
But, but… one may ask, how can one possibly motivate a ninja-suited cop, with adrenaline pumping every time he makes a bust, enjoying the thrill of power every time he intimidates a mere civilian, to leave all that well-paid excitement? Or a tax collector, likewise? Or a War President, disposing of thousands of human lives as the “Leader of the Free World”? Power is massively intoxicating!
The answer again is to undermine the support, on which they depend. Those kinds of people will admittedly be the last to tell their bosses to take those jobs and shove them; but all of them rely upon other government employees, whose minds are less tightly shut. They depend too upon the acceptance of others in society. Let’s imagine:
Two thirds of all government workers have quit. Government money is imploding; banks are closing or drastically changing their nature; many folks are shopping with real money such as silver. A cop goes to buy groceries, with wages that arrived late because the payroll department was short staffed, and frazzled because his uniform had not been laundered (the Town check to the laundry bounced) and his automatic was short an ammunition clip because the inventory clerk had quit two months ago.
“Sorry, sir, we no longer accept government paper here.”
“But you must! It says so, look: ‘This note is legal tender…’”
“Then I guess I’ll break the law. But if you give me a ticket for that, notice what will happen. Word will get around, and nobody in this town will sell you any food, any liquor, any doughnuts, any gasoline. When they see you on the street, they will cross to the other side. And when my case comes to your court, assuming there’s still a janitor to open its doors, my jury will nullify your law. Now, will you really ticket me for not accepting your worthless piece of paper?”
All the fun of kicking people around, armed with a government uniform and weapon, will disappear. Front-line enforcers will be the last to quit, but they will quit.
But, but… what kind of program could re-educate everyone? Three hundred million of us?
Again, not hard, provided everyone undertakes a very light task: just find one friend a year, introduce him to a re-educational facility and help him to graduate and do the same — and then, of course, to quit any government job he may hold. It’s called “exponential growth”, or sometimes “going viral.” Do the math.
Nothing less will do the job, but nothing more is needed — least of all violence, either that of bullets or ballots. Here is one good place to start.
Jim Davies [send him mail] is a retired businessman in New Hampshire who led the development of an on-line school of liberty in 2006, who expects to experience a free society in his lifetime, and who in 2008 wrote the books A Vision of Liberty, Transition to Liberty, and, in 2010, Denial of Liberty and To FREEDOM from Fascism, America!