Category Archives: Don’t Vote

The Fallacy of Pre-Emptive Violence

At a march in Washington D.C. this week, accused neo-Nazi Richard Spencer was kinghit from the blindside by a mystery black-hoodie-clad protester. Footage of the incident was the most viral meme of the entire Inauguration period, trumping even anything the U.S. President said. The reaction of the Internet, predictably, was divided.

One part of the viewership was appalled by the purposeless attack on the sacred value of free speech; another part was excited to an almost sexual state of arousal by the sight of a Nazi getting what they thought he deserved.

Justification for the latter reaction began almost immediately, and was earnest, although convoluted. The basic premise, however, was eerily familiar: Spencer was a Nazi, Nazis want to violently take over the world, therefore they can essentially be attacked at any time in pre-emptive self-defence.

On the face of it, it’s hard to argue with that line of reasoning. The excuse that “I just got the bear before the bear got me” was after all, the excuse George W. Bush used to invade Iraq and kill a million people � and he completely got away with it.

There’s one glaring problem with the Bush Doctrine though, especially when it is applied to blindsiding people in the street for their political opinions: the potential excuses that a person might make to conduct ‘pre-emptive’ violence against another is limited only by human ingenuity.

In the same way that conservatives delude themselves into believing they are compassionate, liberals delude themselves into believing they are tolerant.

For a start, the logic that any violence against Nazis is justified because Nazism is a supremacist political movement also justifies violence against any of the Abrahamic cults, as they are also supremacist ideologies.

It would then be legitimate to beat the shit out of any Christian or Jew one met on the grounds that their holy book contains a command from God to kill homosexuals. One could also conduct pre-emptive violence for a number of reasons against any Muslim you met.

Any American could be dealt to under the logic that American imperialism is one of the prime threats to the stability of the world order, and any European could be shown some fist on the grounds that prior imperialism suggests a high likelihood of future imperialism. Any Chinese or Indian could be bashed because their massive populations threaten the viability of the biosphere.

If someone calls you a Nazi, whether you are one or not, that could be an excuse for pre-emptive violence on the grounds that the epithet is generally only levelled at people who are murderous totalitarians and therefore should be killed with extreme prejudice. And people are being called ‘Nazi’ at ever-increasing rates � it’s almost become synonymous with ‘to the right of the speaker.’

If someone calls you a Commie, whether you are one or not, that could be an excuse for pre-emptive violence on the grounds that the epithet is generally only levelled at people who are murderous totalitarians and therefore should be killed with extreme prejudice. And people are being called ‘Commie’ at ever-increasing rates � it’s almost become synonymous with ‘to the left of the speaker.’

This means that anyone can find a reason to attack anyone else pre-emptively. It’s just a simple matter of knowing if you are doing it because your target is a Nazi or because they are a Commie.

As anyone who walked the streets of Weimar Germany could tell you, National Socialists and Communists are just ready made for fighting, like the yang and yin of violence. Their natural instinct is to go each other like two stags in rutting season.

Perhaps the best course of action for reasonable people is the Churchill Doctrine that served Britain so well in World War II: just stand back and let them kill each other.

The Fallacy of Pre-Emptive Violence

How Low Does Turnout Have to Get Before Voting Loses Legitimacy?

The obvious smartarse answer is “It never had legitimacy”, but this merely ducks the question. The question of when a democracy can lose enough of the perception of legitimacy that it stops working, not by being usurped by authoritarians but from the populace simply not caring about it enough, is worth exploring.

The logic goes something like this. It’s reasonable to assume that if no-one voted at all, not even the politicians themselves, then no-one would care about democracy. So there is a clear limit case as votes approach zero.

If everyone votes (or at least everyone eligible), then it stands to reason that democracy has the biggest possible buy-in. Probably in a culture where 100% of the population votes there would have to be an exceptionally unusual degree of philodemos – a degree never seen in practice.

If a hypothetical democracy starts with 100% participation and this falls over time towards 0%, at some point along the line representing that descent the democracy will fail.

But where exactly?

The most recent American presidential election does not have an official turnout rate yet, but BetFair appears to be sure that it will be somewhere around 58%. This is low by the standards of Western democracies – but there appears to be no way to tell how much of this is due to disenfranchisement and how much is due to people seeing through the system and protesting by not voting.

This already highlights a problem with democracy – bombs dropped by American forces do not do 58% damage, and sentences for non-violent drug offences are not 58% as long as they would otherwise be. No matter how much the population wants democracy, they will get it good and hard.

Not even 58% buy-in is necessary in any case. Adolf Hitler’s NSDAP won the 1933 German Federal Election with under 44% of the vote, and this was enough to get rid of the Communists and pass the Enabling Act which paved the way to total fascism.

You could even argue that – if you take the example of the United States in its infancy, where only white male landowners could vote – even with support for democracy in single digits, it can still function as long as all other possible organisational approaches are prevented from taking form.

The tricky thing is that this line of reasoning exposes the truth at the bottom of the political system: the plebs were never in charge and any impression given to that end is simply a useful illusion.

Ultimately it’s whoever controls the loyalty of the Police that is in charge, because then anyone who disagrees that they’re in charge can be taken by the Police and put in a cage (replace Police with Army in many non-Western countries). This was all that Hitler needed to ensure to take power in Germany.

One has to then ask, if the ruling classes just took all the ballots and dumped them in the ocean, invented some election results that both sounded plausible and ensured the interests of said classes were protected, and then divvied up the remaining jobs among themselves, how much wiser would we all be?

Because the ruling classes doing so wouldn’t even be much different from the way the con is already played.

We can take heart that not all New Zealanders have fallen for the ruse – 63% of the electorate did not vote for a politician in last week’s Mt. Roskill by-election, which means that 63% of potential suckers did not give their power away to a shyster by consenting to the democratic charade.

Indeed, Dr. Richard Goode of Not A Party successfully claimed victory in attracting the non-vote, declaring himself Not A Member of Parliament for Mt. Roskill. This obligates him to not attend Parliament, which means that he is not responsible for levying taxes to spend on flag referendums, and nor is he responsible for putting non-violent drug users in cages by setting the Police on them.

I think we can all agree that this is a better deal than what we are getting from our current crop of MPs.

Faith in democracy will, however, have to get much lower before philosopher-kings such as Dr. Goode can be returned to their true position in society.

How Low Does Turnout Have to Get Before Voting Loses Legitimacy?

Goode, not Wood!

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MEDIA RELEASE
Not A Party

7 December 2016

Goode, not Wood!

The Electoral Commission’s preliminary count shows that Not A Party’s candidate in last Saturday’s long since forgotten Mt. Roskill by-election didn’t even come last. Richard Goode received 40 votes, just 8 votes ahead of the lowest polling candiate. “Saturday’s show of electoral support is like big government,” says Goode. “I didn’t really want it but the voters gave it to me anyway.”

But when you add the non-votes to Goode’s tally, it’s clear that Goode, not Wood, is the electorate’s choice by a landslide! Goode graciously accepts the endorsement of the electorate and declares himself the Not A MP for Mt. Roskill. “I will faithfully represent the 63% of Mt. Roskill electors who didn’t show up to the polling places by not showing up to Parliament,” he assures.

Voter turnout is the second lowest of recent by-elections (in the past 10 years). “Will the current trend continue? The way things are going, I’d say yes,” says Goode optimistically. “Your non-vote counts. But only if you’re registered to not vote,” he adds. “Now is as good a time as any to check that you’re on the electoral roll.”

Vote or don’t, he confidently predicts a win for a Labour-led left bloc at next years’s general election. “History gets repetitive after a while. Since the First Labour Government was elected in 1935, it’s been left, right, left, right … National, Labour, National, Labour … New Zealand’s democracy is a long march in a pointless two-party political parade.”

“It’s time to call a halt to the charade,” he concludes. “DON’T VOTE 2017.”

ENDS

Not A Party (NAP) predicts success in Mt. Roskill by-election

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MEDIA RELEASE
Not A Party

29 November 2016

Not A Party (NAP) predicts success in Mt. Roskill by-election

Richard Goode, Not A Party (NAP) candidate in the Mt. Roskill by-election is predicting his candidacy will be a resounding success when the votes are counted this Saturday 3 December. “My message to voters is to stay home, enjoy your Saturday and refuse to participate in the circus being orchestrated by ringleaders Wood and Parmar.”

“This by-election has been dirty so far with allegations of National Party candidate Parmjeet Parmar’s supporters throwing horseshoes at their enemies and Labour’s Michael Wood threatening his National opponent’s husband who made derogatory comments about Wood’s wife at a public meeting. In short, politics as usual.”

This is why Goode is encouraging people to avoid feeding the politicians by taking no part in the process at all. “Mt. Roskill voters have a golden opportunity in this by-election to opt-out of the whole charade. Politicians behave the way they do because voters indulge their own fantasies of wielding power over others by voting for them.” Goode advises, “Live dangerously, not vicariously. Sort yourselves out, don’t expect politicians to run your lives for you.”

“Once the votes are tallied, the largest group of voters in this by-election will be the group that voted for nobody at all,” predicts Goode. “If we truly live in a democracy, shouldn’t we respect the wishes of the majority and leave the seat of Mt. Roskill vacant?”

“My message to voters is just don’t. But if you really must vote then vote for Not A Party (NAP). I pledge that if elected, I’ll be a no show. If elected, I guarantee Mt. Roskill residents a happy new year living in a politician-free zone.”

ENDS

Not A Party (NAP) predicts success in Mt. Roskill by-election

What’s with the NAP?

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MEDIA RELEASE
Not A Party

17 November 2016

What’s with the NAP?

Last week Not A Party (NAP) announced Richard Goode as their candidate in the Mt. Roskill by-election due to be held on Saturday 3 December. Since then the most commonly asked question has been, “What’s your agenda?”

Our agenda is straightforward. We are here to mobilise the non-vote in Aotearoa New Zealand. And to end the divisive guilt associated with not voting.

When asked if he was even serious about not voting, Goode said, “Yes, I am serious. Political jokes are not at all funny and I certainly don’t condone voting for them.”

The thought of not voting can come as a shock at first. But voting is not the holy grail of civic duty our decision makers would have us believe. Being allowed to be part of the decision making process every few years is nothing more than a Claytons involvement in politics.

Every election we are being persuaded to maintain the belief that not voting is a form of civil disobedience. But it isn’t even. In this country we cherish the democratic right to not vote.

“The insidious maligning of non-voters has gone on long enough,” says Goode. “And I say, stop it. If it helps, I will say this, and I’ll say it right to the cameras. Stop it.”

Ridiculous claims have been made. Goode refutes them thus:

# If you don’t vote you have no right to complain

“This is flat out wrong and back to front. If you vote, you are accepting the outcome of the election whoever wins and you have no reason to complain when your chosen party or candidate loses the personality contest.”

# People who don’t vote are apathetic

“How could this ever have happened?” Goode laughs. “Could it be that they’ve become disillusioned by past voting experiences? Apathy about the graciously provided three yearly opportunity to participate in the voting bonanza doesn’t mean people don’t care about the political direction of this country. It means they care enough not to validate the tyranny and oppression by voting for it.”

# A non vote is a vote for the other guy

“Really? Which other guy? If you do the math I think you’ll find that the people responsible for voting in [insert perceived enemy here] were the people that voted for them. Not the people that didn’t.”

“The gangs that run our country, whether they’re in power or waiting their turn, are having a fine time enjoying the baubles of office at everyone else’s expense.” Goode concludes, “It’s time to think about how we can put an end to unnecessary central government and run our own towns and communities without lavishing huge sums of money on these leeches.”

ENDS

http://www.nap.org.nz/whats-with-the-nap/ ‎

What is anarchism?

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What is anarchism? and what is an anarchist? What is anarchy? These are vexed questions.

According to many dictionaries the term ‘anarchy’ is synonymous with chaos and disorder. Of course, this definition is disputed. In fact, there are no agreed upon definitions of the terms ‘anarchy’, ‘anarchism’ and ‘anarchist’. When it comes to the definitions of these terms, it’s anarchy!

Merriam-Webster, the consensus source of meaning within the dominant paradigm, defines anarchy as: a situation of confusion and wild behavior in which the people in a country, group, organization, etc., are not controlled by rules or laws; or, a state of disorder due to absence or non-recognition of authority. The implications made in these definitions are clear – any absence of authority, structure, or control most surely amounts to confusion, wild behavior, and disorder. In other words, human beings are incapable of controlling themselves, maintaining order, and living peacefully amongst one another. So we are to believe.

Indeed. But this is anarchy in the pejorative sense. So let’s repudiate the dominant paradigm’s dictionary propaganda and instead take to the streets with torches and pitchforks.

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What is anarchism? and what is an anarchist? Let’s start with the easy answers.

What is anarchism? Anarchism is a socio-political ideology such as mutualism, anarcho-capitalism, anarcho-communism, anarcho-syndicalism, anarcho-pacifism, anarcha-feminism, anarcho-primitivism, anarcho-hipsterism, agorism, or anarcho-statism.

What is an anarchist? An anarchist is someone like Pierre-Joseph Proudhon (a French politician), Peter Kropotkin (a Russian academic), Leo Tolstoy (author of the novel War and Peace), Errico Malatesta (an Italian troublemaker), Stephan Kinsella (an American patent attorney), Neil Roberts (a New Zealand suicide bomber), or me (Not A Party’s candidate in the upcoming Mt. Roskill by-election).

Easy answers are easy.

But I suppose that a handy list of (some) anarchists is not really the answer you want. You probably want to know what it is that all anarchists on the list have in common in virtue of which they are anarchists. In other words, a list of necessary and sufficient conditions for when the term ‘anarchist’ applies. This is where it gets tricky tho. Extensional definitions are easy. Intensional definitions, not so much.

In fact, there is no list of necessary conditions for when the term ‘anarchist’ applies. There is nothing that all anarchists have in common. What now then?

Wild Wittgenstein appears!

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Wittgenstein uses Familienähnlichkeit. It’s super effective!

Wittgenstein’s basic idea is that sometimes things which could be thought to be connected by one essential common feature may in fact be connected by a series of overlapping similarities, where no one feature is common to all. Such seems to be the case with anarchism and anarchists. They bear a family resemblance.

So here’s not a comprehensive checklist of anarchist attributes and agendas. If you sign up to some of these, you might be an anarchist. 🙂

1. No state

Anarchism is generally defined as the political philosophy which holds the state to be undesirable, unnecessary, and harmful …

2. No hierarchies

… or alternatively as opposing authority and hierarchical organization in the conduct of human relations.

3. Voluntary association

Proponents of anarchism, known as “anarchists”, advocate stateless societies or non-hierarchical voluntary associations.

Could these three be considered the three pillars of anarchism? See Wikipedia’s excellent outline of anarchism for more info. RationalWiki’s Anarchism is also a handy resource.

4. No rulers

Just a few words about the claim that ‘anarchy’ means “no rulers”. It doesn’t. For sure, the term ‘anarchy’ derives from the Greek ἄναρχος or anarchos, meaning “without rulers” (from ἀν- or an-, meaning “without”, and ἀρχός or archos meaning “ruler”). But to suppose that the meaning of a term is wholly determined by its etymology is to commit the root fallacy.

Christian anarchists are a clear counter-example to the claim that ‘anarchy’ means “no rulers”. Christian anarchists are opposed to worldly rulers, but on the spiritual plane they’re actually monarchists. Jesus himself is sometimes considered the first anarchist in the Christian anarchist tradition. Check out his charge sheet!

Insisting that true anarchists are strictly no rulers likely also excludes the Spanish anarchists (anarcho-communists). As Bryan Caplan explains in his essay The Anarcho-Statists of Spain

It barely took a month for Anarchists to set themselves up as the government of those parts of Aragon under their control, euphemistically dubbing themselves the “Regional Defense Council of Aragon.”

Not my flavour of anarcho-statism, I hasten to add.

Also, surely no self-respecting anarchist is opposed to self-rule.

5. Beards

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6. The NAP

Considered by some to be a defining principle of libertarianism, the non-aggression principle (NAP) is revered by anarcho-capitalists. Aggression is bad, mmmkay? But it turns out that the all-important A in NAP, is defined in terms of a prior theory of property rights. So we can all love the NAP. We just need to plug in our preferred theory of property rights and we’re good to go.

7. Propaganda of the deed

Propaganda of the deed is for violent anarchists. (But we don’t want a bloody revolution.)

8. Civil disobedience

Civil disobedience is for peaceful law-breaking anarchists.

9. Non voting

Non-voting is for otherwise law-abiding non-violent anarchists. Like us, the Not A Party people.

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Voting is not a victimless crime, voting is an act of violence.

10. DON’T VOTE 2017

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Not A Party (NAP) announces Mt. Roskill candidate

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MEDIA RELEASE
Not A Party

7 November 2016

NAP announces Mt. Roskill candidate

Not A Party (NAP) announced today that it is entering the Mt Roskill by-election race.

Richard Goode will represent the party, in its first foray into electoral politics.

Goode said he was “chuffed” to be chosen to stand for Not A Party (NAP) in the seat made vacant by Phil Goff.

“Let’s keep the seat vacant,” says Goode. “Let’s make Mt. Roskill a politician-free zone, with the rest of New Zealand’s electoral map to follow suit at next year’s general election.”

Not A Party (NAP) is the forerunner of a new breed of post-democratic political party. The party advocates a peaceful transition to a free, peaceful and prosperous society based on voluntary cooperation. “Don’t look to politicians for answers, they don’t have any.”

“Individuals and local communities know best what’s best for themselves.” Not A Party (NAP) believes in the efficacy of the man in the street. It is at a grassroots level that people understand what they need to achieve peace and prosperity.

Goode strongly supports people’s right to self-determination. So much so, in fact, that the candidate says he hopes to get no votes. “If you simply must vote, vote NAP. But why not stay home on election day and NAP instead?” He goes on to point out the benefits, “You’ll feel better for it, and be more productive.”

“DIY. Be the change you want to see. Don’t pander to the corporate oligarchs in the Beehive.” This is Goode’s challenge to the electors of Mt. Roskill.

The by-election, which was triggered when Phil Goff switched troughs, will be held on Saturday 3 December.

ENDS

Not A Party (NAP) announces Mt. Roskill candidate

Annihilation Of The Vape

Here’s A Violation of the NAP for ya!

“The NAP is a big cloud of vape conjured from some trenchcoat’s bellowing mouth fedora.”

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Okay okay  …I don’t mean to ATTACK the NAP for it’s sentiment.  Because it’s a great sentiment.  But that’s all it is.  A sentiment.  Righteous in all it’s glory.
02-20-12 Sentiment

First of all, what is the NAP?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-aggression_principle

Sounds good huh?  Until you get to property rights.  Let’s have a thunk about this.  For the NAP to be effective beyond anything but sentiment, everyone has to agree on the specifics of some property rights.  Whilst it’s not wrong to own things, imagine you’ve come home to your plantation to find me walking out your front door  with your TV set and a packet of Tim Tams.  This is considered an act of aggression under the NAP, and you are now free to shoot me in the head with a clear conscience.  Does  this seem right to you?  Of course it’s wrong for me to steal your property but there are two quite different values of aggression going on here.  The NAP seems to value property rights over human rights.  This can’t be not good.

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Also –  What if the plantation you “own” actually belongs to someone else, some original owners, who never agreed to the social construct you’ve exhaled in a big bubblegum flavored cloud and called The Non Aggression Principle.  What if these previous individuals somehow misunderstood the deal to swap the earth itself for some blankets, influenza and syphilis?  And what if it wasn’t me, but this guy below who you came home to find yoinking your consumer comforts and confectionery comestibles?  Is there a whiff of hypocrisy in the bubblegum yet?

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However should we settle such a property dispute?  And how far back should we go?  Should we make like modern day gentlemen and meet with pistols at dawn on the Gaza Strip?

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As well as that  …let’s investigate how you gained the collateral to buy your coveted Tim Tams and TV set in the first place.  Of course, you don’t own slaves!  Omigosh that would be deplorable, not to mention a violation of someone’s property rights (Toby’s body is Toby’s property).

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No no no  …the good folk who work on YOUR plantation all signed a mutual contract whereby for the exchange of their time and labour, you dutifully and graciously provide them with food,

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…accommodation,

The Accommodation

…and a small stipend with which to buy clothes.

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All perfectly acceptable under the glorious concord we understand as the NAP.  Because if these happy go lucky worker bees don’t appreciate it, they are forever welcome to move to Somalia.  Or if they’re not too stupid and lazy they can sack up and acquire their own plantation. (heavy sarcasm emoticon)

So anyway, that’s my opinion.

And now this  (the other NAP)…

 

 

The Solution to Low Voter Turnout is to Have Politicians that Aren’t Cheating, Lying Pieces of Shit

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There were local body elections in New Zealand last week. You probably didn’t know because no-one gives a fuck except for the control freaks that are fighting for power. They care so much about the low turnout that some of them want to make it illegal to not vote.

This means that if you choose not to vote you must either pay a fine or the Police will put you in a cage (and kill you if you resist). This seems extremely aggressive to those of us who do not benefit in any way from voting.

Take, for instance, my personal situation with medicinal cannabis. John Key will not change the cannabis laws and Andrew Little believes that cannabis use causes brain damage. So, no matter who I vote for, I will have a Prime Minister who thinks it’s fair for the Police to come and smash my head in and put me in a cage for using a medicinal plant they don’t approve of.

It’s much better to not vote and, by doing so, withdraw my consent to be governed by a political system that conducts a War on Drugs against its own people. Especially when the only people who have a chance of taking power under this system have already promised to continue this war to destroy people like me.

This I do not only for myself but out of solidarity with all of the people dispossessed by the current New Zealand political system. If my only choices are to give my power to a cheating, lying piece of shit waving a blue flag or a cheating, lying piece of shit waving a red flag, then I will keep my power for myself!

Dr Bryce Edwards, a Massey University politics lecturer and a heavily indoctrinated and brainwashed man, says “[low voter turnout] is a terrible thing. I don’t think there’s really anyone saying lower voter turnout is a good thing”.

Meanwhile, outside of the ivory tower, paedophiles get lighter sentences from the New Zealand “Justice” System than medicinal cannabis growers.

I’m saying that low voter turnout is a good thing, because it is a sign that the population does not consent to the abuses committed against it by the ruling class.

Is it any wonder we’ve lost faith in a political system that gives lighter sentences to paedophiles than it does medicinal cannabis growers? Why should we continue to vote and give our power to the same political system, and to the same clueless old narcissists that brought this atrocious state of injustice about?

Much better to not vote, and in doing so delegitimise the entire system. This is why the control freaks are ultimately afraid of – a population that does not fall for the illusion heavily enough to give away their power to the control freaks.

Not voting doesn’t just mean not voting – it means having the gumption to solve the social problems that politicians exploit to swindle power before that power is swindled. This means looking after vulnerable members of your community before the control freaks start making laws to ban everything that they have not explicitly given permission for.

It means mowing an old person’s lawn. It means smiling at the crazy guy with the haunted look. It means making a donation of time or money to the RSPCA. It means talking honestly with people you know about what’s really going on in the world.

If we all stopped falling for the lies, we could have a world in which the control freaks would dissipate into the gutter like the filth they are.

The Solution to Low Voter Turnout is to Have Politicians that Aren’t Cheating, Lying Pieces of Shit

Government Does Not Exist

Larken Rose is an anarchist author best known for challenging the IRS to answer questions about the federal tax liability of citizens, and being put in prison with no questions answered.

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Most people believe that “government” is necessary, though they also acknowledge that “authority” often leads to corruption and abuse. They know that “government” can be inefficient, unfair, unreasonable and oppressive, but they still believe that “authority” can be a force for good. What they fail to realize is that the problem is not just that “government” produces inferior results, or that “authority” is often abused. The problem is that the concept itself is utterly irrational and self-contradictory. It is nothing but a superstition, devoid of any logical or evidentiary support, which people hold only as a result of constant cult-like indoctrination designed to hide the logical absurdity of the concept, It is not a matter of degree, or how it is used; the truth is that “authority” does not and cannot exist at all, and failure to recognize that fact has led billions of people to believe things and do things that are horrendously destructive. There can be no such thing as good “authority”– in fact, there is no such thing as “authority” at all. As strange as that may sound, it can easily be proven.

In short, government does not exist. It never has and it never will. The politicians are real, the soldiers and police who enforce the politicians’ will are real, the buildings they inhabit are real, the weapons they wield are very real, but their supposed “authority” is not. And without that “authority,” without the right to do what they do, they are nothing but a gang of thugs. The term “government” implies legitimacy – it means the exercise of “authority” over a certain people or place. The way people speak of those in power, calling their commands “laws,” referring to disobedience to them as a “crime,” and so on, implies the right of” government” to rule, and a corresponding obligation on the part of its subjects to obey. Without the right to rule (”authority”), there is no reason to call the entity “government,” and all of the politicians and their mercenaries become utterly indistinguishable from a giant organized crime syndicate, their “laws” no more valid than the threats of muggers and carjackers. And that, in reality, is what every “government” is: an illegitimate gang of thugs, thieves and murderers, masquerading as a rightful ruling body.

(The reason the terms “government” and “authority” appear inside quotation marks throughout this book is because there is never a legitimate right to rule, so government and authority never actually exist. In this book such terms refer only to the people and gangs erroneously imagined to have the right to rule.)

All mainstream political discussion – all debate about what should be “legal” and “illegal,” who should be put into power, what “national policy” should be, how “government” should handle various issues – all of it is utterly irrational and a complete waste of time, as it is all based upon the false premise that one person can have the right to rule another, that “authority” can even exist. The entire debate about how “authority” should be used, and what “government” should do, is exactly as useful as debating how Santa Claus should handle Christmas. But it is infinitely more dangerous. On the bright side, removing that danger – the biggest threat that humanity has ever faced, in fact – does not require changing the fundamental nature of man, or converting all hatred to love, or performing any other drastic alteration to the state of the universe. Instead, it requires only that people recognize and then let go of one particular superstition, one irrational lie that almost everyone has been taught to believe. In one sense, most of the world’s problems could be solved overnight if everyone did something akin to giving up the belief in Santa Claus.

Any idea or proposed solution to a problem that depends upon the existence of “government,” and that includes absolutely everything within the realm of politics, is inherently invalid. To use an analogy, two people could engage in a useful, rational discussion about whether nuclear power or hydroelectric dams are the better way to produce electricity for their town. But if someone suggested that a better option would be to generate electricity using magic pixie dust, his comments would be and should be dismissed as ridiculous, because real problems cannot be solved by mythical entities, Yet almost all modem discussion of societal problems is nothing but an argument about which type of magic pixie dust will save humanity. All political discussion rests upon an unquestioned but false assumption, which everyone takes on faith simply because they see and hear everyone else repeating the myth: the notion that there can be such a thing as legitimate “government.”

The problem with popular misconceptions is just that: they are popular. When any belief – even the most ridiculous, illogical belief – is held by most people, it will not feel unreasonable to the believers. Continuing in the belief will feel easy and safe, while questioning it will be uncomfortable and very difficult, if not impossible. Even abundant evidence of the horrendously destructive power of the myth of “authority,” on a nearly incomprehensible level and stretching back for thousands of years, has not been enough to make more than a handful of people even begin to question the fundamental concept. And so, believing themselves to be enlightened and wise, human beings continue to stumble into one colossal disaster after another, as a result of their inability to shake off the most dangerous superstition: the belief in “authority.”

The Most Dangerous Superstition