As far as I’m aware, I am the closest to an anarchist of anyone actively writing for this website. I’m the “token anarchist” aboard Halsey News. Go figure. It’s a position that almost no one else is willing to take. Even the most libertarian of libertarians shy away from insisting that ALL government is immoral and illegitimate. While being “so far out there” leaves me many times without allies, it allows my perspective to take a course not often considered.
Over the past seven months or so, I’ve become increasingly tired of main stream media, and that certainly includes Fox News and conservative talk radio. The issues talked about are quite frankly NOT the biggest ones facing our country. They may be the most scandalous, the “hottest” stories, but they lack depth, and in almost every instance, causes are not named and solutions are not discussed in a meaningful sense.
The big issues to me are ones that surround thousands of Americans dying in the streets due to gang violence, or thousands of people being addicted to opiates and heroin. The country’s debt and financial woes are more important than a statue of Robert E Lee, and America’s foreign policy as a whole is more important than Colin Kaepernick sitting down during the National Anthem. America ranks lower than pretty much all of the developed world in terms of its education system. America is also fatter, sicker, and increasingly more entitled than the rest of the world. These are the topics that matter and need to be discussed in the public square.
Who or what is to blame? Government. In virtually every realm of society, the problem grows out of flawed human nature, but is ALWAYS given the “Miracle Grow” called government intervention. Years ago I wrote an article on saving America’s inner cities. I prescribed three ways to drastically change policy to benefit the people in America that are suffering the most.
- School Choice. Allow for competition in the education system. Parents in the inner city are forced to send their kids to failing public schools that are more like day-care for teenagers than places of learning. Competition would force both public and private schools to create a better product for their customers – the students and parents. Kids in school are less likely to be involved with gangs and drugs, are more likely to find jobs after they graduate, and are less likely to make the unwise decision of having children out of wedlock (one of the key indicators for a life of poverty).
- End the War on Drugs. One of the reasons why selling drugs is profitable is because drugs operate in a black market. Profit margins in black markets are significantly higher than in a free market. Remember that in a free market, prices tend towards equilibrium, meaning that supply and demand match each other, and profits shrink over time. Ending the war on drugs would increase competition, and force gangsters to either legitimize their operations or go out of business.
- End the minimum wage. Government has saddled children with a poor education that in many cases doesn’t even qualify them for a job at McDonald’s. Repealing the minimum wage would allow these poorly educated youngsters the opportunity to at least get a job, and start climbing up the ladder. The way things are now – it is illegal for kids to get a job for $5/hour, BUT they can still sell drugs instead.
All around, it is government intervention that is causing the violence on the streets of cities like Chicago, Milwaukee, Detroit, Baltimore, and so many others. Terrorism is a blip on the map when compared to how many people die each weekend on the streets in America!
What else is killing people? Heroin! Opiates! Also a result of government intervention! The rise in the use of heroin is directly attributed to the rise in the use of prescription pain killers. Drugs are given to patients for insignificant injuries and minor surgeries, when in reality, marijuana would have the same pain-numbing effect without the addictive side effect. The FDA grants permission for certain drugs to be peddled by licensed drug dealers (sometimes referred to as “doctors”), while another department, the DEA, is putting people in jail for using a safer alternative to treat the same symptoms. This is government ineptitude at its finest, and it is crippling hundreds of thousands of Americans.
I tend to shy away from any label, including “anarchist”, but at the same time, I feel more and more compelled everyday to just give in. It isn’t that I don’t believe there is a role for government, it’s just that I haven’t found one yet. Everything we believe only government can provide – roads, police, the fire department – all existed without government. America’s first police were private. The Pennsylvania turnpike was originally private.
What is there that only government can provide? The common answer would be national security, yet time and time again, government intervention has proven to make Americans less safe, and at the same time, less free. Consider for instance the side effects of the invasion of Iraq in 2003. Noam Chomsky writes in Failed States: The Abuse of Power and the Assault on Democracy,
“There is little doubt that the invasion of Iraq had the effect of ‘greatly strengthening the popular appeal of anti-democratic radicals such as those of al-Qaeda and other jihadi salafis’ throughout the Muslim world. A crucial illustration is Indonesia, the state with the world’s largest Muslim population and a likely source of jihadi terror. In 2000, 75% of Indonesians viewed Americans favorable. This number fell to 61 percent by 2002 and plummeted to 15 percent after the invasion of Iraq, with 80 percent of Indonesians saying they feared an attack by the United States.”
Even in the field of national security, we can see that government has made us less safe. I know what some people (on the right) will criticize – I just quoted a passage from a Chomsky book. Well, that’s the nice thing about the positions I’ve taken – I’m not confined to reading “conservative” authors who appear on the New York Times Best Seller list. You shouldn’t be either! Read Marx, Keynes, Chomsky, and others. Read the stuff you shouldn’t. Worst case scenario you’ll change your mind. Best case scenario, you’ll have more ammo to argue and debate with.
It is time to break free from what we’ve been brainwashed to think – that we need a ruler. That’s what government is – a ruler. Anarchy comes from two words. “An” meaning without, and “archon” meaning ruler. Anarchy does not mean there are no rules, it means there are no rulers. It is the most logical, moral, and practical position to take. It’s also the most fun and intriguing. Come along for the ride. Be an anarchist!