Larken Rose – Intelligent American Libertarian
Wednesday February 8, 2012 10:36 am Leave a comment
I find it very encouraging to find myself on the same wavelength as this particular American Libertarian. He seems particularly rational compared to other members of his tribe and, from what I’ve read here, we would have only the tiniest of disagreements.
I certainly share, exactly, his analysis of Authoritarianism and its status as the Number One Issue Facing Humanity. Also thoroughly agree with some of the tactical analysis. Twas reaching this passage that made me decide to blog re this inteview:
One of the reasons I think the income tax fraud lasted so long is because hardly anyone had the time, or desire, to rummage through law books, and that’s if they even knew where to find them. There’s no way I would have found what I did without the internet. I wouldn’t have known there was anything to look for, and if I did, I wouldn’t have known where to look, and if I did, it would have taken many more years to put it all together. Having this much information so easily accessible has made a huge difference.
Clearly that’s a favourite point in my own lexicon. By contrast, here’s one of his arguments with which I must quibble. Larken asks:
Can someone delegate a right he doesn’t have? No, of course not. If I don’t have the right to steal, I can’t give someone else the right to steal. It’s so elementary it’s ridiculous. The problem is that obvious truth completely rules out all government. If normal people don’t have the right to tax, and forcibly interfere in the lives of non-violent people, then they can’t possibly have given such a right to those in government − not by any election, or constitution, or any other document or ritual − and that means that just about everything that government does is inherently illegitimate.
The problem is that this is philosophically inconsistent. Nor is it wholly libertarian. He is not allowing for S & M
It is perfectly legitimate for consenting adults to agree to be bullied, dominated and abused. Not just for sexual pleasure, but as a lifestyle choice. Obviously this is a choice we Libertarians and Anarchists would not endorse, but neither, I hope, would we condemn.
Where it crosses the line into something we do condemn and resist is when those who enjoy being controlled and abused by their elected dictators, wrongly believe they have the right to give those dictators permission to also control and abuse those of us who didn’t agree to play their game in the first place. THAT is the anarchist border-line. You can do what you like as long as it doesn’t infringe on my liberty to do what I like. And I’ll pay you the same respect.
Thus the philosophically legitimate argument we can make is that, unless an individual has demonstrably given their informed consent to a proposed Law (or constitution), they are bound by no ethical constraint to conform to it. It may be tactically wise or necessary to conform, for obvious military reasons (you may be vastly outnumbered and outgunned). But that doesn’t make it ethical. Furthermore, if a result of the existence of such a Law is to deprive him or her of their liberty or treasure, then they they would breach no ethical principle by avoiding, subverting and opposing such a Law.
Of course, we can’t expect the Authoritarians to accept that philosophical argument. My most optimistic current belief is that we may occasionally be able to persuade potential jurors to accept that argument. Unfortunately, as this article reveals, Larken’s experience in that regard does not justify my optimisim to date. Nevertheless, the web offers a much better chance to achieve critical mass among the potential juror population than we can hope to achieve in terms of undermining the Authoritarian machine with a frontal attack…