For some time now, I have been spending plenty of time debating on Youtube the merits behind Anarcho-Capitalism. That is the primary reason I have not been posting nearly as much for some time on here, not that I have ever been a ferocious blogger on my site to begin with.
Still, I must admit that I never really spent too much time debating the merits of Market Anarchy with others on the net until now. I did raise a little hell on an alternative news source in mid-October of last year, but that was probably the first and only time I engaged in a sustained discussion on the topic with people who did not share my views. I know enough by now that convincing someone that Anarcho-Capitalism is the way to go can really be broken down into two steps:
1. Explaining to the skeptic what government is, and how it differs from the market. Piece of cake if they wish to avoid contradicting themselves.
2. Convincing them that everything government does is either unnecessary – such as enforcing victimless crime laws – or can be better handled by market participants.
So far it appears that getting a skeptic to acknowledge that government is a regional sovereign of legitimized coercion takes a lot more effort than I once thought. By that definition I refer to the fact that what makes government distinct from ordinary citizenry is that it can initiate force within a given territory. Taxation, asset forfeiture, imprisonment, and a whole host of other things can fall under the umbrella of activities that “initiate force.” The only way you can opt out of the system altogether without changing it is to switch countries, plain and simple.
I will not go into great detail here about the meaning of these terms or the difference between State and market activity because that is not the main point of my post here – distinguishing government from free market associations between people will be the subject of a later post as well as the introduction to my book.
Once someone comes to realize the difference between the market and government, it can be smooth sailing from there in terms of convincing someone that Market Anarchy is the way to go. All you have to do is explain how the market would handle anything from drug safety to national defense. Some people have more questions than others, but for me personally I declared myself an Anarcho-Capitalist as soon as I had a coherent understanding of what government was. Though I did not know how private law would work in practice, I did know that giving a group a monopoly on enforcing it while exempting themselves from the very rules they applied to everyone else was ineffective.
But needless to say, it appears that the main rhetorical escape hatch from acknowledging the distinction that government has is to say that we somehow consented to the whole ordeal, thus making it an ethical institution after all. Do you dislike the way government is handling healthcare? Then leave the country. Are you upset that this is a religious country? Same thing applies. Are you a Christian being persecuted under a totalitarian regime? Then get up and leave. Even though this is what plenty of Christians had to do to get away from Soviet tyranny, that still leaves the question of what gave the Communist leaders the legitimate authority to harass them in the first place.
This is where formless777 and I have found ourselves in disagreement. He (or she – though no woman I know has ever been this pathological) seems to think that the Jews actually did consent to the holocaust in the first place. Formless777 was asked by yours truly how I ever “consented” to government control in the first place. His response was that because I live under a government, that gives it the authority to impose it’s will on me even if I feel private alternatives to the “services” it provides are more desirable. From there I asked him if the same logic applied when the Jews were being mass-murdered since they resided under a tyrannical regime.
Scroll down until you get to the partially highlighted comment by formless777:
Had it not been for the fact that we had been debating for a few weeks (which still has yet to subside), I would have presumed that this guy was just trying to make a sick joke. Not necessarily a troll, but just throwing out some dark humor for the hell of it.
Sadly this is not the case, formless777 actually believes that the Jews consented to mass murder simply because they did not make any coordinated attempt to resist. I guess if the gang gets large enough to the point where resistance is futile it can become a moral thing after all.
I mean, I am well aware that those who wish to defend the existence of government will go to great lengths to convince people that we all consented to the beast in the first place. But this one really takes the cake. This will not be the end of fallacious arguments for consent; claiming that government has rightful power over someone because they live there is a circular argument that assumes the State has the moral high ground. This manner of begging the question may never go away, but hopefully this is the last time I will see someone promote it in the manner that formless777 has.