What is it about people that makes them want to control others?
I suggest that there are two main reasons that most people want to be in public office. One is so they can use people for their own selfish interests, and the other reason, which some may consider to be more “noble”, is that they think they can control the affairs of individuals and communities better than they can themselves. Ludwig Von Mises stated the following in the preface of his work Omnipotent Government: “At the bottom of all totalitarian doctrines lies the belief that the rulers are wiser and loftier than their subjects and that they therefore know better what benefits those ruled than they themselves.”
What is the State? A simple definition of the State is that it is a nation or territory considered to be an organized political community under one government. That tells us what the State is, in simple terms, but it doesn’t tell us what the State does. Obviously, State governments can exist in different forms – monarchism, communism, republicanism, democracy, theocracy, etc. Over the centuries, in the name of “patriotism” people have killed and been killed over disputes about the best form of State government, usually at the behest of their rulers who want to protect their positions of influence and their self-interests. Even many Christians (who are supposed to serve no King but Christ), if not outright worshipping certain Heads of State, have at least worshipped the State itself because of their own self-centered interests. The thirteenth chapter of the Book of Romans has given them, so they think, the approval to do so. The fact is, the State as an entity is the legalization of violence against people and their property. Of course, people are willing to ignore this fact and call it something else as long as they themselves are not the ones being terrorized and plundered. After all, in their view, the State’s purpose is to bear the sword against those who are doing evil – those who believe and do things differently than they do. Being against the violence of the State (its unjust wars, coerced taxation, prisonization, etc.) does not mean one is against order or even civil governance. But governance does not have to come in the form of a monopolized State (federal, state, or local) that uses force to accomplish its self-serving goals. According to Per L. Bylund, the nature of State government is that “it is an organization based upon the use of force and with the sole purpose to use that force. When force is institutionalized and legitimized there is no limiting its reach. What one can do is to stay out of its way or become part of the elite which controls it.” (Read this, at Lewrockwell.com)
So that is what people do. They must live in fear of the whims of those who work for the State, or they join or support the State so they can impose their will on others.
Why do people (including many professing Christians) worship, protect, and put so much stock into the State? I will name three reasons.
1. They hunger for control over others and/or wealth. Many people benefit from the extortions of the State. They benefit from the State control of others – perhaps monetarily through the actions of the military, police, courts, etc., or from an alliance with big corporations and big government. If their business interests are protected by the big guns of government, all the better for them, right? People will also support and promote the State so they can obtain positions of power because it feeds their egos and demonstrates how “successful” they are.
2. They think the State will give them security. What people seem to miss is the fact that the State has no resources of its own. To provide for one, the State must steal from another, thus limiting his productivity and ability to help his fellow man. In making the interests of one a point of emphasis, the interests of another gets ignored. The State cannot protect people from the inconveniences of living in society without being an inconvenience to those living in society. The State is a poor substitute for the Church, individuals, non-profits, and community organizations in times of trouble. Furthermore, the State has proven to be great at wasting resources and using them for immoral purposes (abortion, war, welfare, etc.) Considering all of this, it is apparent that the State does not offer security – and to the extent that it tries, it only curtails personal liberty.
3. People think the State will protect them and maintain order. Rather than cooperate with others voluntarily, as much as possible, people would rather the State use violence to suppress their enemies. This is evidenced by their support of the policing and military arms of the State. Those who do not act and believe like “they” do should be in prison or should be blown to pieces. They claim they do not trust men, but they fail to realize that the people they are giving so much power to are men just the same, so in fact, those who support State government are only endangering themselves and others even more. It is an easily proven fact that people with the power of the State behind them have caused more death, destruction, and misery than any others on earth – both at home and abroad. This contradiction appears to fly right over the heads of those who practice statolatry. The State ruins lives through murder and theft. We have the natural right to protect our families, and to decide which causes we will be willing to sacrifice our lives for. It is immoral to trust in the State to provide for and protect one’s family, and to allow it to decide for them what is right and what is wrong.
I am convinced that the three greatest sources of evil on earth are individual selfishness (sin), Satan, and the State.
The State is ruled by Satan, the god of this world, and it facilitates and funds the legalized wickedness of man that he (and they) wishes to perpetrate against others. Many lies have been told, and many believed, that have turned the State into a de facto god. If the State says to do it, people obey. If the State says kill, people kill. If the State says it is ok, no matter how evil it is, it is ok because the State says so. If the State says someone should be in a cage, into a cage he goes. If the State says certain people are the enemies, they are the enemies – both foreign and domestic. If the State says someone is a hero, citizens worship him as a hero. This includes many professing Christians who are easily propagandized by national hero glorifying movies, music, and myths.
As previously stated, people will kill and be killed for certain forms of State government. This is absurd, for at the end of the day, it is all about deciding which form of control the people will be under. Killing for the State is not for freedom – it is for choosing a method of slavery. Democracy is nothing more than mob rule. It is not honorable. It is certainly not worth killing for. If 51 percent of the people in a democracy say I should not be allowed to practice my beliefs, I will not be allowed to practice my beliefs with impunity. "Spreading democracy" has merely been a cover for men to force their self-serving interests upon others, and yet many Americans will go to foreign lands to kill or be killed so they can help spread more slavery and more totalitarianism - and call it freedom fighting. It’s a sham. American militarism is fraudulent. And many have fallen for it and have tried to glorify it. Many are not willing to admit their military service or police force has been unjust and immoral. Society does not need the violence of the State to have governance. Anarchism is to be preferred to State violence. Anarchism is not the absence of rule and order, it is the absence of State rulers. It is ordered liberty. Anarcho-capitalism posits that the natural needs of man – food, water, protection, shelter, safety – will be better met by adhering to the principles of the free market than by the coercion of State force.
Does the State own you? Does it give you your rights? Or do you have natural rights that the State has no business interfering with? Do we not see the evils of the State? Does the State own your children? It thinks it does. It thinks it knows better than you do about what your family needs and how your family should live. The Christian father does not know best, Uncle Sam knows best. Should the State get to decide what happens to your wages? Should decision makers for the State get to use your children as cannon fodder for their ungodly ambitions? Should they get to turn them into killers, who then turn around and kill themselves because of their shame? The U.S. military does not protect freedom, it carries out the self-serving interests of corporatists – the financial elites that are dangling presidents and congresspeople like puppets on a string. I am not opposed to the principles of governance. Family governance, Church governance, and Stateless community governance are beneficial, but I am opposed to the evil omnipotent State that can forcibly take your property away from you, throw you in jail for something it deems to be a threat to its omnipotence, or draft you into its wicked interventionist military to try to make you kill to protect the interests of politicians.
State violence is not needed to keep order in society. People claim we need the State because we cannot trust the human race. The State, whether we are speaking of local, state, or federal governments, is comprised of the same members of the human race. Why do we fear men to the point that we are willing to turn around and give them the tools for tyranny? The imbecility of this is astounding.
The State demands our tax dollars for property that we wrongly call our own, and if we do not pay, they can take our property away from us. This is theft, plain and simple. Yet people work in government positions and assist the State in its robbery of their fellow man. Will God hold you guiltless? Do we think we are justified because we are just “doing our job” when we steal and kill for the State? God help us to see the error of our ways.
Recently I was told that the officials of the borough that my family and I are living in currently are considering instituting a requirement that all citizens must “register” whatever animals they have, and the animals must be micro-chipped. I heard there was backlash, and do not know how much traction the idea has gained, but it is no business of the mayor or any other borough official what kind of animals I have or how many. They will not get a dime from me, and I will not be micro-chipping any animals I own or may own in the future. It is amazing to see how a petty little mayor and members of a city council think they can assume this kind of control over people and their property. Should we be surprised? As one of the modern-day champions of liberty - Lew Rockwell - has written before, the presidency in the United States is the greatest enemy of liberty in the nation. Not any one person in the presidency - the office of the presidency. The founding fathers had a healthy lack of trust for the executive branch of government and sought to limit the powers of the position. As time has passed, the presidency in the United States has chipped away at these limitations by claiming powers it was not meant to have. That is what men do with power. Even petty little mayors. That is why we would benefit from the positions of State rulership being abolished altogether. I will not capitulate to the whims of a president who says my family must inject themselves with a substance at his command, nor will I allow a petty little mayor to tell me what I must do with my property.
I do not condone violence. I believe that Christ would have us live peaceably with all men, as much as it is possible. But I will resist the edicts of tyrants and protect my family from violence. The so-called “common-good” does not trump my God-given rights to protect my person, property, and family - though I would not go as far for property or myself as I would for my family. There is no common-good that ignores what is best for individuals. Yet the State often disguises its power grabbing motives by spouting lies about doing what is best for all. These oft-repeated words of C.S. Lewis sum it up well:
“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”