New Hampshire Underground

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

Please log in on the special "login" page, not on any of these normal pages. Thank you, The Procrastinating Management

"Let them march all they want, as long as they pay their taxes."  --Alexander Haig

Pages: 1 ... 60 61 62 63 64 [65]   Go Down

Author Topic: Politics is an immoral dead-end  (Read 60913 times)

J’raxis 270145

  • Voluntaryist
  • Enemy of the State
  • ******
  • Karma: 1110
  • Posts: 3487
  • DILIGE·QVOD·VIS·FAC
    • Jeremy J. Olson
Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #960 on: March 15, 2008, 09:20 PM NHFT »

By your choice of methods, we’d all be sitting around with Jim Crow laws still on the books, until the state as a whole collapses. People would of course be free to opt out and drop out, but every now and then the State would keep coming along and crushing people with these odious laws.

I've spent a lot of time thinking about this line of thought, and others like it. I don't want to continue in an argument, but I am curious as to your thoughts on this Jraxis:

We all agree that the reason we have a state is because of its perceived legitimacy among most of the people. My question is, when you work to make the state more humane (as opposed to letting it continue in its natural course so that individuals can see its true nature), aren't you lending your humanity to an inherently inhumane entity and increasing its perceived legitimacy in the eyes of others?

First off, I don’t agree with that premise—some believe that the State is legitimate, but some simply fear it or are resigned to put up with its existence. The legitimacy perception certainly isn’t universal. However, that actually doesn’t change the point of your question, so whatever.

As to your question:—

What you’re saying is basically the same as Menno has said, I think: The less oppressive the State is, the more people will perceive it as legitimate or at least tolerate its continued existence. I don’t dispute this. But I don’t think it matters.

The support of the general public is only one part of the equation—the actual dedicated activists who want to see the State completely gone, no matter how harmless it begins to appear, are the other. By the point that we reach something resembling what the minarchists advocate for—a government that protects life, liberty, and property, and goes no further—I believe we’ll have enough activists to keep the movement toward a completely Stateless society going.

So the question becomes, will the general public actually oppose us at that point (rather than just sit apathetically on the sidelines)?

If the answer is no, which I think is most likely, then we’ve nothing to worry about. The reason I think that no is the most likely answer is that as we’re going along here tearing down the State, we’re also building up those institutions needed to replace it—the private support networks, private charities, private currencies, private security services, &c., &c.. By the point that we get the State to minarchist levels, we’ll be so close to not even needing the State anyway, what with all these competing institutions in place, that I don’t believe too many people would be attached to it and even care if we finally do away with it completely. If functioning, successful private security firms exist, that 90% of the people use, why would someone oppose abolishing the police? Why would people want the government to continue printing fiat scrip when everyone’s using actual precious metals for currency? And so on.

If the answer is yes, I’m not sure what the solution would be. Perhaps it won’t matter—public opinion doesn’t really seem to affect the course of the State now, so why would it when the State is in the process of abolishing itself? This possibility I’ll admit requires further thought, as we should, and must, be ready for every possible contingency.
Logged

Caleb

  • a mind guerilla, chanting the mantra "peace on earth"
  • Enemy of the State
  • ******
  • Karma: 973
  • Posts: 2851
    • Caleb's Corner
Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #961 on: March 15, 2008, 09:46 PM NHFT »

Fair enough. Like I said, I don't want to argue with you. It's just that when I supported the state and in the system activism, I wasn't an anarchist. The two kind of went together for me:  I started pulling away from in the system activism while simultaneously becoming more and more of an anarchist. So I've never been in a position where I was an anarchist working within the system, and it just sort of seems like a contradiction in terms to me. And I'm trying to understand it. Then again, first and foremost, I am very idealistic, so it's hard for me to even comprehend pragmatism.
Logged

J’raxis 270145

  • Voluntaryist
  • Enemy of the State
  • ******
  • Karma: 1110
  • Posts: 3487
  • DILIGE·QVOD·VIS·FAC
    • Jeremy J. Olson
Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #962 on: March 15, 2008, 10:22 PM NHFT »

Nor do I want to argue with people who are interested in the same goal as me but have simply chosen to take different routes to get there. My goal in the debating with yourself, Menno, and some of the others is to arrive at a synthesis of methods, not to “win” by discrediting all the others.

The point of anarchists working within the system is to get inside it in order to dismantle it from within. You could even call it a form of “striking at the root”: I don’t want to spend time fighting with the police, or the bureaucracies, or protesting taxes by not paying them and then trying to argue my individual case in front of a court. I want to get to the very heart of the system, the Legislature, and then eliminate all of the previous organs of the State one by one, law by law, chapter by chapter.

I don’t agree with those who say that by getting inside the State, one becomes responsible for all of its aggression. One is only responsible for that which oneself has done or caused to be done. And if we can lessen the amount of aggression the State is engaging in, I see that as a victory even if we’re complicit in allowing some other form of aggression to continue. (The archetypical example being Ron Paul, who would end 90% of the fed’s aggression but leave 10% intact.) I want to rid ourselves of the State. But I also want to stop the injustices that the State is responsible for, now, as soon as possible.

I don’t agree with those who say that we’re somehow increasing the power of the State by doing what we’re doing. Lowering or abolishing a tax, repealing a bad law, closing down one the State’s bureaucracies, is a directly quantifiable reduction in the power of the State, not an increase.

I don’t agree with the “principled” stand that we somehow sully ourselves by doing business with the State. I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again: If you want to unclog a stopped-up toilet, you’re going to have to stick your hands in a bowlful of shit.

And as people such as myself are hacking away at the very belly of the Beast, I want people such as yourself, Menno, Russell, and so on, to keep doing exactly what they’re doing. I don’t expect nor want everyone to try to work within the system as I and some others are—this path may very well prove ineffective for some reason unforeseen, and if it’s the only thing everyone is doing, the entire movement dies at that point. But if everyone’s attacking the State from all different directions, it virtually ensures that we’ll ultimately be successful no matter what the State does to try and neutrailze any one of our attack vectors.
Logged

KBCraig

  • Childish in charge
  • Global Moderator
  • Enemy of the State
  • *****
  • Karma: 2266
  • Posts: 13062
  • Spazzing for Freedom
Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #963 on: March 16, 2008, 02:19 AM NHFT »

Big +1 to J'raxis.

I am not involved "in the system" because I believe government is preferable to anarchy. I am only involved because I believe government is inevitable.

You could wave a magic "gun control" wand, make all guns disappear, but would we have a society free of weapons and those who initiate force? Of course not!

Likewise, if we wave a magic wand and make government disappear, we would not suddenly enjoy a world free of those who band together, declare themselves a "majority", and rule over us by force.

I would prefer anarchy. I accept minarchy as a check against self-appointed oligarchy.
Logged

Russell Kanning

  • Administrator
  • Enemy of the State
  • *****
  • Karma: 2485
  • Posts: 22785
  • The Nonviolent Revolution starts here
    • russellkanning.com blog
Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #964 on: March 16, 2008, 07:54 AM NHFT »

... some believe that the State is legitimate, but some simply fear it or are resigned to put up with its existence. The legitimacy perception certainly isn’t universal.
I totally agree with you Jeremy. We can have half the people not agreeing with the government ... but if they are too scared to oppose it .... it looks like they agree.
I don't want to sit by while the state gets worse and worse .... and I appreciate that you want to do something too. :)
Logged

Eli

  • Guest
Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #965 on: March 20, 2008, 11:22 AM NHFT »

The reason I, as an anarchist, support in-system activism (for those interested in it) is because I am more concerned for those who, imminently, are going to be harmed by the government, than I care for any other particular strategy for demolishing the state.  This was my initial problem with the first solid group of libertarians (at an IHS seminar)  they wanted to abolish this and that (social programs, roads, etc.) without taking into account the people harmed by those actions and the backlash that would likely occur.  I support in system and out of system antiwar action because I care about the people harmed by the war more than some fear of legitimizing the state through effective legislative action.  Corrective legislation does not legitimize the state, it mitigates the harm of the state.  The illegitimacy is apparent in the harm already done.  Anyone who can't see that isn't likely to see that the state is illegitimate any other way either.  But that just may be my pragmatism talking.
Logged

anthonybpugh

  • Mischievous
  • **
  • Karma: -124
  • Posts: 350
Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #966 on: March 20, 2008, 02:06 PM NHFT »

The reason I, as a fan of cartoons, support in-system activism is because if you were to look at the history of the development of many of our political institutions and traditions you would see that many of them developed as a means of checking and restraining the power of the government.  You see voting is actually an extremely small part of democratic government.  Most of democracy is a set of institutions and traditions.  These are not institutions that developed to create an illusion of legitimacy but out of various concessions won out of conflicts between competing interests and they resulted in a whole host of rights and privileges that we enjoy today.  it was a conflict between some of the ruling elites that we got such rights like Habeas Corpus and trial by jury.  The problem is that many of these democratic political institutions are in danger of disappearing as a result of the government's various wars on drugs/terror/poverty/bad hygiene.  That if those institutions are lost we will lose the things restraining the government and we will feel the full force of their unchecked power.  I support in-system activism because I want to see things like Free Speech, Right to Keep and Bear Arms, Habeas Corpus, Freedom of Association, etc.  preserved and strengthened.  I highly doubt that anyone will be able to persuade their fellow citizens on the validity of an anarchist world if such talk is considered seditious and result in those holding that view winding up in a gulag.   
Logged
Pages: 1 ... 60 61 62 63 64 [65]   Go Up