You Are an Enemy of the State

K

K

I am dedicated to an ideologically pure form of anarcho-capitalist thought in the libertarian style, following the mold of great thinkers like Murray Rothbard.

You are an enemy of the state.

This is not hyperbole, though I am making certain assumptions about my audience.

These assumptions are not very broad, though. You may be a Democrat, or a Republican, or the little-leading-letter versions of the same. You may be a union member, or a God-fearing church-goer, or a pillar of the community.

I know that this platform probably only reaches a few people, and those it reaches are those who already agree with me, and we’re already subversives who would like to see the regime go (in my case, to be replaced by nothing). But even if this achieves larger circulation, there are few chances that it will find its way into the hands of someone who is not an enemy of the state.

Maybe you are an agent of the state, one of its employees. With the way we’re heading toward a police state in most of the Western world, this is not impossible.

Even then, you might be an enemy of the state. This was the fate of Winston Smith in 1984. Employment does not guarantee allegiance.

Of course, let’s assume you’re a loyal redcoat. In that case, you can ignore this.

But if you’re part of the people in the middle, between us anarchists or dissidents and the arms of the ruling elite, how are you an enemy of the state?

The Ruling Elite

I’m not the first person to come up with the idea of the ruling elite. Dozens of thinkers have espoused the classification, from Machiavelli to Burnham and a number of modern thinkers, most of whom are simply elaborating on Machiavelli’s theories.

The simple rule is this: only one person or cadre gets to oversee a society. If you’re an elite theorist and an anarchist like me, your argument is then that any societies need to be voluntary to be moral, but even in these you’ll have a ruling elite.

Perhaps in a small enough society, you’d be able to put everyone in that ruling elite. We see a form of this in the household, where everyone is engaged in cooperation and belongs to the same unit, but I don’t think that this metaphor can really expand to civilization-scales.

And a tricky thing for someone like me, who believes in the moral imperative of uncoerced human action within the framework of nonaggression, is to deal with the stratification that naturally results.

This is not the place for that analysis.

The important thing to know is that the current system is fundamentally coercive. We grumble about death and taxes, but only some people remember that the second is the direct act of a human force and not a natural fact of being.

The Boundaries of the Ruling Elite

The DC elite, which is the de facto ruling class of the Western world alongside the leadership of friendly regimes (see Canada’s recent crackdown on its protestors), is not split along simple lines.

It is comforting to think of it as being such, of course. The Republicans and Democrats fight like cats and dogs in campaign propaganda, but there are members of both parties—perhaps even members who sit in Congress—who are not part of the ruling elite. There are conspiracies about ethnic groups, secret societies, and families that control everything.

None of these are worth spending too much time on. No ethnic group, secret society, or family is the entire ruling elite, nor is every member of any ethnic group, secret society, or family a member of the ruling elite.

There are certainly links between certain societies, like the World Economic Forum, and the ruling elite, and many, if not all, of the chief executives in our lifetime are part of the ruling elite (the alternative is that they are figureheads with no real power or useful idiots who coincidentally agree with the ruling elite’s outlook, the latter of which is less likely).

The fundamental issue is that when dealing with a major entity like the global American empire, and the peculiarity of a nominally democratic system, the ruling elite is necessarily a coalition of several different factions, of whom only a select group will be in the elite.

Further, the ruling elite is not a reflection of the natural elite. There may be very successful people who fall outside the ruling elite because they are not interesting to it (i.e. wealthy but not politically active individuals whose power does not threaten the ruling elite, such as the “champagne socialists”), or because they have an elite status within a domain not inherently linked with political power, such as the moral elite who live upstanding personal lives.

The Elite Hate You

I would argue that even the most “democratic” government still views the vast majority of its citizens as tax cattle. The regime does not value them for their citizenship, despite a civic myth to the contrary.

As Gaetano Mosca pointed out, the fundamental weakness of any democracy’s claim to legitimacy is that someone curates the options on the ballot. It is not possible for every interest to receive equal attention, if only because not every interest is equal to the others.

The problem is that there are both benign oversights and deliberate manipulations involved in the system. Depending on how the system is set up, different issues may occur, but there is no opportunity for large systems to function as legitimate representations of popular will.

The larger the institution, the worse these effects are, but this should not be mistaken for their absence in a small system. I am not making a moral judgment here, since there will always be a significant portion of the population who society politically disenfranchises.

This may come of their own volition (i.e. being apolitical) or from the fact that they are unacceptable outsiders and a threat to the social order (a policy I espouse applying to communists, fascists, syndicalists, and democrats in the mode of Hans Herman Hoppe’s libertarian social order).

The important thing to realize here is that you do not love the ruling elite. You do not really benefit from it, except as you would benefit from any other ruling elite. If the global American empire were to be run by an autocratic monarch, the vast majority of the population would see no difference from the social democratic regime currently in power, except perhaps that political activists would have less to gain from their current strategies and would need to pivot to different methods.

The ruling elites would build the same roads under a democratic government, a monarch, or my anarcho-capitalist society. The reasons would vary, but probably not greatly. They facilitate trade and power projection. Anarchists would doubtless build fewer roads, but ask the Gauls if they wanted a road that led to Rome (or the inhabitants of the Shenandoah Valley if they wanted the road that brought in Sheridan) and there would probably be some division on the subject.

The same is true of all the things we consider public institutions. It was the Prussian monarchy that gave us public schools.

None of the gifts of the ruling elite are benevolent. They are functions of power. They may be a genuine good (like water treatment plants), but they are a genuine good because this keeps the people complacent.

Image by Hubert de Thé from Pixabay

Why You are an Enemy

If left to your own devices, what do you want? Do you like the Biden regime? If you had your way, is there anyone else you would put in power? Will you swear unconditional allegiance to the next president, right now? The president after that?

Sure, you may have said the Pledge of Allegiance. You may think that the Constitution is second only to Scripture.

But there is something that would make you rebel. You oppose the government funneling the money it steals from you to its cronies. You object to the public school curriculum, not fully conscious of the fact that it exists to make a population complacent with the regime goals (and, worse, that the competence of students is not the highest end of the system).

The ruling elite is not even safe from factions within the ruling elite. History is full of Caesars and Pompeys. There is no such thing as honor among thieves, and government is a good racket. Anyone outside the ruling elite is a threat, at least if they’re competent enough to count as an elite. And if we’re being honest, a bunch of Afghan goat-herders could kick out the most expensive military in the world, so the ruling elite can’t afford to take chances with anyone who’s not with the program.

And you are not part of the ruling elite. You don’t know the name of the person who will make the most important decision in your child’s life. In fact, you really don’t have the biggest control over whether you live or die, or how you live.

The Benevolent Elite

We are fortunate to live under a benevolent elite. They will not come during the night and kill you, at least not if you’re an affluent white person with no ties to drugs, firearms, or violence. At least, not if they get the right house when they raid it in the middle of the night.

But this does not mean that you are safe.

After all, they could freeze your bank accounts, as the Canadian government has given carte blanche for their financial institutions to do to anyone supporting protests that inconvenience them economically.

Ah, but you could function outside the banking system. This will impose a cost, of course. You will need to provide your own security, transfer your money in-person with paper bills, and explain to employers and associates why you can’t just swipe a card and watch money get where it needs to be.

And then they will wonder if interacting with you will condemn them to the same fate, and slowly they will move away from you.

Or the government can come to your house and question you. Perhaps you posted something that might have been a secret message, that might have provoked a terror attack. Maybe you sent a text message or left a voicemail in a moment of anger, or perhaps you have politically extreme material.

Of course, we live in a liberal society that tolerates a dissent. They just need to take your computer, your phone, your paper records, and make sure that there is nothing to worry about. After all, if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear.

You may lose personal photographs, and you’ll miss a few e-mails and a few messages. You’re a law-abiding citizen, so you don’t have any copyrighted material that you illegally downloaded. You’ve never mentioned breaking a victimless law in private correspondence, and there is nobody who will look down at you just because officials took an interest in you. You had nothing to hide, after all!

And if there is nothing to hide, they’re not obligated to return anything they took just because they suspected you wrongly. After all, policing is expensive. Like taxes, civil asset forfeiture is a price you pay to be safe in the arms of such a benevolent regime.

But if you were hiding something, they will not kill you. Probably, at least. If they come to arrest you with force and they kill you while you are complying, the officer involved will face the most severe punishment. He may even be forced into retirement.

And if you fought back? Then pray for mercy. There are still places where the court will acquit an innocent person, should they be found to have acted blamelessly in a moment of night-time terror. Or perhaps they will take you into custody, injuring or killing your loved ones along the way, and you will disappear from society for the next decade, or two, or forever.

This is the compensation your benevolent elite give you: schools to mold your children in their image, roads to carry their war machines to your doorstep, and taxes to pay for the service.

These are the bread and butter of the ruling elite, and you would do well to think of them as blood-soaked bastards. To them, you are nothing more than a Breonna Taylor, a Duncan Lemp, an Ashli Babbitt.