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Does “Anarcho-Capitalism” scare you? It shouldn’t

The words “anarcho capitalism” probably scare most people.  After all, doesn’t “anarchy” mean an absence of order, and who would want to live in a world without “order”?

Cut to the chase.

Llewellyn Rockwell, a proponent of anarcho-capitalism and author of “Against the State,” does not advocate a world without order but order based on anarcho-capitalism, a voluntary civilization based on private property, laissez-faire, and non-aggression, instead of “order” based on coercion, which is what we have today.

Much of “Against the State” outlines and illustrates the oppression that the State imposes in its perception of order, such as, in the United States, the TSA’s “right” to feel up passengers before boarding airplanes, no-knock searches in the middle of the night, lack of probable cause stops, confiscation of private property under the “Wetlands Act,” the dictatorial powers given the EPA under the “Clean Air Act,” secret Executive Orders, the FISA Court and OSHA.  Every reader can add to this list of State powers used to “provide order.”

But, there is a cost of imposed order, and that cost is liberty.  Said another way, imposed order leads to a totalitarian state, which is rapidly approaching.  Many would argue, and I’m certain that Rockwell is one of them, that we already live in a totalitarian state.

Rockwell notes that historically crimes were actions against persons or property.  In times past in this country, if a recluse wanted to live in the remote woods and ingest whatever substances in his body, he could do so without the State even caring.  Not today.  A SWAT team would be sent–possibly in the middle of the night–to bring this miscreant to justice.

Rockwell does not discuss how to get from our present totalitarian state to an anarcho-capitalist state, I suspect because he thinks it impossible to rollback the State institutions and agencies that the people have come to accept.

Rolling back, eliminating, pruning and diminishing State powers is the goal of the political right, the Constitutionalists.  I support their efforts and want them to succeed.  However, I remember that Murray Rothbard in “For a New Liberty,” wrote many years ago that the Constitution was a wonderful effort, but it failed. The natural desire for people in power is to increase their power.

Today, the three branches of our government exist to support each other.  When Congress passes a law and the president signs it, it becomes “the law of the land” and everyone expected to comply, which often means bowing before the State.

The Supreme Court seems to exist only to validate what Congress and the president do.  Rarely do the people win a decision on a really important issue before the Supreme Court.

As noted above, Rockwell does not tell us how to get from our totalitarian state to an anarcho-capitalist state.  Instead, he says that “What we need to realize is that the State system is dead.  It cannot sustain itself, and we must be ready when it falls with something better.”

I have long thought that our present economic system, dominated by economically-ignorant persons in the White House, Congress, the Supreme Court and the thousands of government agencies, cannot survive.

With every passing legislation comes enforcement provisions, and penalties for those who do not comply.   The Department of Justice now has the hubris to say that foreign banks operating in Europe have to comply with US law.  (This is developing into a major issue between the European Union and the Obama administration.)

How, as Ron Paul asks, can twelve persons sitting in a room, even with all statistics and graphs in the world, determine what is the right interest rate for a country of 300 million people?  They can’t.

No reason to guess how the State system will go down, incrementally or an instant collapse.  But, Americans need to know the benefits of a free-market economy based on property rights or they will have a “command economy” imposed, such as the command economies that brought such wealth and prosperity (sic) to the old Soviet Union and Red China.

2 Responses to “Does “Anarcho-Capitalism” scare you? It shouldn’t”

  1. Martin

    Thank you, Mr. Haynes. That is an outstanding editorial. I liked everything, especially the part regarding the TSA. After all, I think that in a post 9/11 world, all airline passengers clearly understand that anyone trying to hijack a plane is no longer looking for a flight to Cuba, as I reckon nearly everyone on board the tragic flights on 9/11 figured. Today, all passengers understand that if someone is acting up on-board, it is time to play ‘dog pile on the rabbit’, right? This alone should make something such as the TSA a useless infringement. Thanks again.


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