Sunday, May 31, 2009

The Post-Democratic State

Hoppeans concerned about "democracy" really don't have anything to worry about, as far as the United States is concerned. There is truly almost no power the people at large have to influence the government. Once the government can lie to the population on matters of "national security" on the grounds that if the people knew the truth, they would withdraw their support, all pretense of "democracy" is transparently thin indeed. And it's not this pretense that keeps people from revolting. Frankly, most people probably don't care.
It's fear of police brutality, and fear of economic privation. The triumph (so far) of American Corporatism has made most people economically dependent on the State, either directly or indirectly through the banks and large corporations. To rebel would be to become rapidly impoverished, let alone in danger of imprisonment or death, whereas to go along with things, for most Americans right now, means a life of comfort and peace.
During the days of the American Revolution, the economy was at least somewhat disentangled from the State. The "patriots" were still able to eat regularly, save maybe the common soldiers of the Continental Army, which is a whole other story. Nowadays that isn't so much the case. This is yet another reason why only some form of agorism or meta-agorism can work as a liberation strategy. Unless we have a counter-economy running in parallel to the official economy, any attempt at rebellion would fizzle out pretty rapidly. Once we do have one, the resistance, such as it might be, will largely take the form of self-defense against an ever-more-desperate police state hunting down "black marketeers".

perhaps not so unintended at all...

"Almost everyone believes that the state should be in the business of setting national goals in every area of life, of guiding its subjects' paths, of reordering their lives and the world. Most people argue only about particular choices and the degree of control involved. Almost no one will challenge the principle itself."
- Arthur Silber

And this, this right here, is the only ideology that actually matters, when it comes to the State. The rest is just gas and bullshit to fool the rubes. The "republicans" handle one side of the con, and the "democrats" handle a different side of it. In the long run, they're both working together to extend their collective power over us. Any real disagreements are like two farmers disagreeing over livestock management techniques.

"These are only some of the very bitter fruits of foreign intervention: uncontrollable consequences are always set loose and, all too often, those consequences are directly opposed to what the original stated purpose had been. And yet, like the insane man, we repeat this behavior over and over again, insisting that this time the result will be different, and it will finally work -- and we'll get exactly the result we want, and no others at all."
- Arthur Silber (from a different essay)

Ahh but to this I would say, if you keep throwing the baby out with the bath-water, maybe it was the baby you wanted to get rid of in the first place.

After 100+ years of practice, those playing this game must have at least some vague idea of the praxeology of intervention. Certainly, if you or I have figured some of it out in the short span of our years of analysis.
At the very least they must understand that the more chaos and capital destruction, outside of their "walled city" of private order, the better it is for them. If you're a water oligpolist, a world-wide drought is just what the doctor ordered. Extend the pattern... and voila!

The game really has to work that way, because that is functionally how it works, either that or they're just all insane. Either explanation makes at least some sort of sense.

Friday, May 15, 2009