Taking Money From The Government

From: T
To: Walter Block
Subject: Taking money from the Government

I enjoyed your discussion with Tom Woods. The questions I’m left with relate to once the money has been taken from the government. You made a distinction between the Marxist and Libertarian professor drawing a government pay check. Would it be okay to steal the stolen money from the Marxist but not the Libertarian, or both or neither? Perhaps embezzling from Goldman Sachs would be okay? Or do we say that once the ill-gotten gains are got back from the government, they are now legitimate? The Goldman Sachs could always say, “Yes, we made evil arguments to get the money, but we didn’t believe this stuff, and we’re really working for the demise of the system.” (Just as the person stealing from the Nazi motor-pool may have told the guard that he needed the truck to round up Jews.) What counts, the motivation, or the results of activism aimed at getting into the government purse?

Dear T: I don’t want to say anything illegal, so I can’t answer your question with regard to the US or any other country I might ever visit. But, let’s suppose we are talking about the equivalents of the people, groups, you mention, only they are all located on Mars, or North Korea. Then, I would say, you have drawn the correct implications from what I wrote. By the way, Ragnar Danneskjold, my major hero in Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, did precisely this.

Best regards,



9:01 pm on September 12, 2017