An Answer To “The Omnipotence of State…”

There is little doubt that the State, the institution whose sole function is to legitimately coerce and inflict violence upon others, makes a dangerous enemy. One must only look at certain events of the 20th century to verify this fact, although a look at the entirety of human history would paint a similar picture: give a human being a position of great power, and inevitably, they will become the worst type of dictator in short order. Give thousands upon thousands of these men (and women) parasitic positions, and you have an entire institution of megalomaniacs.

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Therefore, when examining the scope of human history, it’s no surprise that many have a tendency to deify the State and give it god-like characteristics (“omnipotent,” “omniscient,” and “omnipresent”). While it’s understandable, I will argue that this sort of mindset is not only unproductive for self-liberators, but that it is also untrue because the State is largely incompetent.

It’s unproductive…

When it comes to self-liberation and alternative lifestyles, individuals in the statist-servile society (and even some anarchists, too) seem to always come up with an endless list of why such-and-such lifestyle is unpractical, unrealistic, unaffordable, crazy, downright stupid, or whatever. Considering the practicality of some of these lifestyles, it would seem to be the case that this reaction is a subconscious defense mechanism. Because, let’s face it, human beings do inherently want to be free, but they tend to place as many barriers in the way as possible.

Some people love their chains; some need them; and folks like me are eleutheromaniacs (maniacs for freedom).

It reminds me of an article by Paul Rosenberg titled, 9 Reasons People Fear Freedom, from his book, A Lodging of Wayfaring Men. The first item on the list is fear of responsibility, and rightfully so. He writes:

Freedom is threatening because it eliminates the possibility of shifting responsibility for your errors onto others. Freedom puts you right out in the open, with no cloak for your mistakes. It also gives you full credit for your successes, but that is seldom considered, as the fear-based impulses are generally stronger.

To be free, means to accept personal responsibility for your life and your actions. That prospect is daunting for many who have become brainwashed and propagandized to depend upon the State.

Similarly, I think this is another reason why some anarchists will elevate the State to this god-like status. Theists argue that God is here, has always been here, and will forever be here. So, if the State has been here forever and will continue to be here into infinity, then why the hell would “we” even try to fight it? Why even try to escape? Resistance is futile.

Even if the above were true, that mindset is abhorrent and unproductive; it’s a retreat to apathy, it’s an excuse for laziness, and it really eliminates most of the purpose from a self-liberator: if you will forever be a slave regardless of the actions you take, is life really worth living? Maybe, but that sounds a bit depressing to me.

For those who are freedom-minded but more so philosophically (i.e. Murray Rothbard), this sort of deification of the State leads them to believe that freedom can only happen in the long run, after enough minds have been changed. “I can’t be free until everyone else is free!” With this controlled schizophrenia still largely intact, backsliding into political crusading is quite typical; sigh, Murray.

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Unfortunately though, this mindset is quite predominant in the anarchist and libertarian community today; a bunch of people trying to philosophize their way to a free society. That alone will never be enough; theory and action are a necessary duality. This is the role vonu plays in the creation of a freer future.

As Rayo said in Vonu: Book 2 – Letters From Rayo:

We may still have some contact with That society but we won’t have to worry appreciably over what idiotic thing the people-molesters do next (any more than somebody who takes a vacation at the Riviera now and then needs to be much concerned about the politics of France.) Our change in life-style will be, in a sense, an answer to the omnipotence-of-State line of Rothbard and Hess. We will answer not in words but by doing – the only real way. [Emphasis added]

The State is largely incompetent…

Even the things the State is best at, it is still incompetent at to one degree or another. Take theft and lying as the State’s most effective aspects.

  • Theft: In 2013, the size of the underground economy was estimated at $2 trillion, or $500 billion in unpaid taxes. The large majority of those folks will never have any run-ins with the IRS; reason being, there are 10,000 IRS agents attempting to collect from 122 million American taxpayers.
  • Lying: Now obviously, dishonesty is a requirement for a State to hold control and perceived legitimacy. If the modern State was 100% open with the way the system operated and why, “I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning,” to quote Henry Ford. And of course, they are incompetent at this; there are continuous leaks from former employees/contractors, hackers have been known to infiltrate their systems, etc. They can try to keep things a secret, but the truth always seems to find its way out.

So, they’re quite incompetent, even at the things they are best known for doing.

Conspiracists also have a tendency to deify and bolster the State. For every single school shooting, bombing, or other terrorist attack, there are no shortage of individuals ready to claim that X, Y, and Z event were successful false flags, perfectly orchestrated by the State. Now, I’m not saying there aren’t real false flags; there certainly are and I’ve dug into quite a few in the past. What I am saying is that the State is probably more than happy to have some folks tossing blame their way for these events. If the perception is that they can orchestrate the Sandy Hook shooting and get away with it, fear and consternation are likely emotions, meaning they get to stay in power.

Therefore, it’s no surprise that conspiracists often get stuck in the minarchist cage, rarely discussing solutions outside of politics. IF the State now has the attributes of God-like power and if it will be here forever, then the BEST we can hope for is a return to a smaller size.

Let’s also consider the fact that 99% of government programs are complete and utter failures, at least when taken in context with the stated goal (i.e. wars on drugs, terror, crime, and poverty, the United States Postal Service, and the Department of Motor Vehicles, to name a few examples). Oh, the law of unintended consequences; that dreaded, economic principle that despicable central planners can never escape from. Do any of these things sound akin to “god-like characteristics”? I don’t think so.

So, yes, the “omnipotence-of-State line of Rothbard and Hess” is riddled with issues. First, it’s unproductive, and second, the State is largely incompetent, EVEN at the things it does best. Is it still a dangerous enemy? You bet your ass it is, and self-liberators should not ignore this fact. Rather, they should acknowledge their enemy exists, learn its strategies and tactics, and develop lifestyles to defend one’s self against the threat of coercion.

And that’s what vonu is. It is a coherent philosophy and strategy, and is your tool for self-liberation. Yes, Rayo, you’re exactly right: “We will not answer in words but by doing – the only real way.”

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