Monday, May 22, 2006

Is Anarcho-Capitalism the New Homosexuality?

As one of the miniscule number of anarcho-capitalists in this country it can sometimes be a little tricky at social events. Only at a very small number of such events can I speak my mind freely, on the rare though always highly enjoyable occasions where I get to meet my fellow travellers. We literally meet in rooms not much bigger than a closet, and afterwards skulk in the most minute corners of anonymous bars.

Admittedly, the numbers are growing. At one recent meeting, we couldn't even get everyone in the closet. One unfortunate soul had to sit outside in the corridor. Yey, I can hear you think, today the closet, tomorrow the upstairs landing!? But what is much worse is mingling in what you might call polite society. Around 99.999% of intelligent people, in this country, are socialists. Some call themselves conservatives, some liberals, and some Labour supporters, but to me, because they all believe in government intervention in society, they are all socialists.

So what do you do? Well, you keep your mouth ultra shut. If you were to ever view your true feelings at any typical London dinner party, it would take about 17 micro-seconds to be shown the door as a raving mono-maniac, never to be invited again. Believe me, I know this through bitter experience. So the choice is, do you wear your anarchistic heart on your sleeve, or do you mumble your way through life discussing cricket and rugby to get thought of as some kind of harmlessly mild eccentric because you refuse to discuss politics? Coward that I am, I'm afraid I've taken the low road to societal inclusion. It's either that or be cut off entirely from virtually all human physical conversation. Because there is nothing that people hate more than having their political views challenged, except for perhaps visiting dentists. Which is kind of weird really! The discussion of politics is supposed to be an intellectual pursuit. But if you scratch it, any political discussion always seems to rapidly revert to the basest form of emotional tribalism. But I digress.

There may be only a few of us anarcho-capitalists around, mostly hiding in closets. And there may be just one or two who actually walk the streets proud to advertise our true nature. But should we be disheartened? Should we get depressed because so few intelligent people seem to share our thoughts and feelings? Only if we have failed to read the lessons of history.

Just look at Quentin Crisp, the naked civil servant. For decades he was seemingly the only homosexual in Britain. Yes, people whispered about Kenneth Williams too, but Earth Mother Goddess Hattie Jacques seemed to mask his nature too, with her Matron routine in the Carry On films.

The bravery of Quentin Crisp is legendary. Despite failing to serve in the army in World War II, he was perhaps the most courageous man in Britain, routinely risking the worst forms of physical harrassment on the streets of London.

But look at Britain now. Just take a stroll past the Admiral Duncan pub, in Old Compton Street, on a warm Spring evening, or Canal Street, in Manchester. Although they may be a minority, Britain is absolutely heaving with homosexuals, none of whom are afraid of the feelings of polite society. And they achieved this through the bravery of people like Quentin Crisp.

Although we will never stoop to campaigning for special government favours to help our cause, perhaps we, the anarcho-capitalists, if we stick to our guns and refuse to get depressed, can achieve a similar level of success. We believe that we represent the true innate feelings of humanity, which have only been masked by a continual propaganda operation by the state. The state needs to keep this propaganda operation going night and day, to sustain itself, with its control of virtually all educational outlets, plus great swathes of the media, particularly the BBC.

Therefore our plan must be to continually work on getting them out of this propaganda operation. Once we have freed people's minds, their true human action nature will quickly reassert itself. And although we may seem powerless up against the entrenched bureaucracies of the Department of Education and the BBC, Quentin Crisp was similarly powerless against the entrenched laws forbidding homosexuality.

But he beat them. He was the victor. He won.

We can win too. But only if we stick to our guns and keep the fight going, till we all draw our last breath. What have we got to lose? A life not worth living as a government slave? So stick to your principles, stick to your beliefs, and keep fighting the enemy without giving up hope or without giving up an enthusiasm for a life of freedom for everyone. We have nothing to lose but our chains.

Fight them until we can't.

17 comments:

Daniel said...

I hear you man. It's hard not being pegged as a loony extremist, no matter how smart you are. It's difficult being in America too, surrounded alternately by bigots and socialists. Year after year goes by as attempted government "reforms" of public education, socialized medicine, welfare institutions and foreign aid fail, one after another, and still noone listens to you when you say that government isn't the answer.

Jack Maturin said...

I had thought it would be slightly easier in the US, particularly with your fine tradition of independence inspired by the throwing off of the British State yoke, plus the fabulous Declaration of Independence. But I think it's the public schooling that's the key. Once you get that, controlled by the state, and spending other people's money, you're on the slippery slope down to where we are over here in Europe. Ok, some people who go through the public schooling mill can overcome its brainwashing effects, but very few remain completely unscathed. That's why it's good to see so many home-schoolers over there in the US, and a higher percentage of privately educated children (though I know the private schools are mostly wrapped in as much Gosplan state red tape as the public schools, to keep them with the propganda program - home schooling may be the only way to destroy the Leviathan).

If the state was so secure it wouldn't need to be involved in mass education. This is the critical crutch that keeps it sustained, and self-sustaining, as it recruits more operatives from its educational programs.

We just have to keep chipping away at that, and providing blog sites like this one with an alternative view of the world, and routeways through to Mises.org, and I'm hoping that one day we will reach a tipping point.

It's either that, or become the Conservative Member of Parliament for Reading East. And I'd rather wander witless through the world, than succumb to that particular fate.

Keep fighting the good fight, as the nineteenth-century US campaigners for public schools used to say - and look what they achieved; the democratic welfare-warfare state of their wildest dreams! ;-)

cuthhyra said...

So Jack, are you saying there are clandestine ancap meetings in dimly lit pubs? Sounds like a Dan Brown novel, then again look at the success that had; maybe if we packaged ancap as the century spanning noble fight against the statist tyranny of those who would deny the son of Christ was an ancap not a socialist...

On the other hand maybe I'd best stop nipping out to the pub at lunch time.

To be marginally more serious, it is depressing how the majority of people are unable to even contemplate the removal of state intrusion in their lives. It is not so much that they try to rebut the arguments of ancap, but rather they are unable to even grasp how an argument can be framed outside the confines of statist ideology.

Radical Sceptic said...

Missed you at last nights meeting of the illuminati Jack. Hope you can make the next one.

Jack Maturin said...

So Jack, are you saying there are clandestine ancap meetings in dimly lit pubs?

We all wear roses, grow moustaches (including the ladies), and say things like, "My radio valve is broken. Perhaps you need a Trilby, sir," before you're allowed in.

To be marginally more serious, it is depressing how the majority of people are unable to even contemplate the removal of state intrusion in their lives.

Occasionally, when I can stand it no more, I give them all a burst, and it's as if they didn't hear me, and then we carry on talking about why Andy Robinson is such a poor choice as England head coach. Anarcho-capitalism is so far out from most people's mental frames, it is literally incomprehensible. Even right-wing free-market Tories find it tough going, because they're with you up to the point where you say the police should be privatised and that all taxes should be abolished. And lefties are with you when you say all drugs should be legalised (for those stupid enough to take them), and then lose it completely when you say all welfare benefits should be removed and all taxes abolished. Both groups would rather be with each other, than with us, because at least they live in the same taxation prison, just in different wings, where we gambol freely through orchards and meadows. Oh well. Maybe I should take up that offer to be a Tory candidate after all! :-)

Missed you at last nights meeting of the illuminati Jack. Hope you can make the next one.

All depends on my schedule, I'm afraid. Fear ye not. If I'm ever in London on those nights, I'll be there, as long as I don't get the seat in the corridor. I'd rather stay in the closet, for the moment.

Gekko said...

Interesting views on ancap. I think there's two of us down here in NZ, and since I'm a pommie expat that would leave only one home grown ;-)
Seriously though, even though NZ generally feels more socialist than the UK, we do have a flicker of hope (albeit a very small one). We have a libertarian party promoting an objectivist minarchist alternative. Although it's widely regarded with derision/contempt to a greater or even greater degree it does at least have the benefit of throwing some of the less shocking ideas into the ring to entertain people. While there is little chance of them ever returning an MP to parliament even under the MMP system here, they do at least make enough noise that some people notice them, even if only then to disregard them. Hopefully maybe there will be enough friction that some of the ideas may gain traction. They are still statists of course (wanting the state to run police/justice etc), but they unwittingly act as a pressure group to at least let people know there is an alternative to ever increasing amounts of govt intervention and control.
Unfortunately not many are interested down here and the pork barrels are overflowing. But my ancap flag is still flying, despite being bloodstained, torn and tattered by the attacks of others. ;-)

Jack Maturin said...

Keep that ancap flag, flying, gekko. Is it still a Union Jack, or does it have southern stars on it yet? :-)

New Zealand, a home for Objectivists who are taken seriously? Wow! :-)

Not so much Rivendell, as Galt's Gulch, then.

Are you still having a depopulation problem down there, with all the Maoris and entrepreneurs moving to Australia? Maybe one day they'll all wake up and find all of the pigs have flown away and taken all their pork with them.

PS> I wonder if Peter Jackson has bought the rights to 'Atlas Shrugged'?

Now THAT would be a HELL of a film.

pb said...

Jack I think you are taking yourself too seriously. Generally speaking nobody listens to anybody else unless they confirm an already preheld position. The hallmark of being propagandized is that we cling to our positions until there is absolutely no possibility of twisting new information to fit our preconceived positions. Rather than presenting ourselves as anarcho-capitalists, I think we are better appreciated if we present ourselves as detached skeptics. Make fun of the absurdities, but don't get frustrated when nobody listens to positive pronouncements.

Read Albert J. Nock's "Isaiah's Job" which is available someplace on the web. There is a remnant that listens. That is about all you really have a right to hope for and expect. Knowing that the remnant exists should keep you going. You aren't destined for a wide audience.

Jack Maturin said...

Jack I think you are taking yourself too seriously.

It's just the way I write, I'm afraid. It sort of just comes out that way.

But if you think I take myself seriously, you must be confusing me with someone else. I take myself about as seriously as Tony Blair takes his own statements on truth and honour.

Generally speaking nobody listens to anybody else unless they confirm an already preheld position.

But this is the crucial point, isn't it? I absolutely agree with you that once people have established a view of themselves and the world, let's say for the sake of argument at, or around, the age of 25, there is only a miniscule number of people who change much in their view of the world. And I'm not much interested in these lost fixed-mind people, as they're pretty much a lost cause and a waste of time and effort trying to persuade - not that they ever will, as they're too far gone for that. So why bother making enemies of them?

But how did they get these 'preheld' views in the first place, which caused them to become so inflexible? It is here where we need to attack, because they are developing these 'firmly held convictions' within schools, and during childhood and teenage years watching media outlets aimed at children and teenagers. And therefore it is to these age groups where we should concentrate our efforts, first, in getting the state out of their heads, and out of schools, and out of all forms of childhood education, and second, offering them an array of information channels (such as Mises.org, or pointers to Mises.org such as this site aspires to), so that when they question things their teachers won't answer questions about, there exists an outlet for investigation, and learning, and history, and translations of the works of Bastiat et al. (And recordings of Mr. LeFevre.)

I'm actually not frustrated about these people at dinner parties, who won't listen - when I am a guest in someone's home I try to respect their right not to be verbally assaulted by raving mono-maniacs. The only ones of these 'adults' who I'm interested in are the 1% or less who are capable of altering their fixed views. And we need to keep plugging away at them, all we can, but only up to the point where they can stand it.

Maybe I should rewrite the piece and say 'Once we have freed the young people's minds', to make this clearer, but it is to young people that we must devote our efforts. We must help them get educated properly, help them find free-thinking courses at free-thinking Universities, and encourage them to become professors, historians, lawyers, psychologists, and all other sorts of social science professionals, who can then persuade others, and their students, of the cause of freedom. And particularly, of course, get these high-flying students to become high-flying economics professors and philosophy professors, for these are the pinnacles of human thought, which in the long run influence all the other social sciences.

Alas, I fear, my generation is lost already to state thralldom. It is the generation that comes after mine, and probably the one after that, where I think humanity's true salvation lies. But only if we help them first, by not giving up on them now, and not getting depressed, and not allowing the state to encroach upon us, as much as we can.

BTW, if you knew me at one of these closet meetings we have, you'd really know I don't take myself seriously - not in the phenomenally well-educated, eloquent, articulate, and reasoned group I sometimes have the privilege of trying to keep up with mentally, usually failing abysmally - and thanks for the book recommendation. I'll check it out.

You aren't destined for a wide audience.

That's good. That means the rounds of drinks are cheaper.

pb said...

Jack I didn't really mean to sound critical. Though I live on the other side of the Atlantic and often don't quite know who you are talking about, I incredibly look forward to each of your new postings. I am not really sure I said the right thing when I said you took yourself to seriously. What I think I wanted to say is that you take it too seriously. If you read a columnist like Bill Bonner who regularly rights for Lew Rockwell's site, I think his worldview probably matches our own, but he has a relaxed detached way of making fun of the collapse of the empire which disarms believers. I am not sure you can attack statism head on with people that believe in its necessity without causing them to get defensive and tighten their position. As unpleasant as it might seem, I think we have to attack things from the side and from the rear.

As much as I like your solutions, I cringe to think how they would be implimented, How do you free young people's minds? Can you systemetize teaching freedom? If you systemetize teaching freedom, have you not morphed it into something else? I love Bastiat, Mises, Rothbard, and Rockwell; but the thought of forcing anybody to read them changes them into something they aren't. Though I am now over three score years, I notice a spark of freedom even in the kids miseducated in the public schools. Sometimes seeing the void left by something done wrong is the opening that is needed to start the imagination looking for what is actually right. I think the best we can hope for is to foster a dissatisfaction with the state and self reliance will follow in many. As self reliance grows, interest in the philosophy of freedom will grow.

I know it is easy to throw out links and suggest alot of effort on somebody else's part. The piece I recommended by Albert J. Nock is not particularly lengthy and says a great deal about how communication of ideas takes place. "Isaiah's Job" will make you feel a little more optimistic. The seeds are planted in more places than we sometimes realize. It is easy to focus on all the wrong thinkers and ignore the right thinkers. Anti-statist sentiments are more prevalent than we might think and in the strangest of places. As the failures of the state become more and more pronounced, we might just have more allies than we think. Even people that argue against us often hear what we say.

Daniel said...

There's nothing wrong with systematically teaching liberty, so long as it's not done coercively.

And even if we just relaxed the stranglehold of public education a little bit, like say through vouchers, it could give private education enough leeway to demonstrate its superiority, and further leverage more and more market share away from the wicked state school system.

Jack Maturin said...

What I think I wanted to say is that you take it too seriously.

Well, perhaps you're right. But once again, it's just the way I write, I'm afraid. It just comes out that way. Though when I'm writing about Gordon Brown, our Chancellor, and probably next socialist Prime Minister, I really do mean it.

If you read a columnist like Bill Bonner...has a relaxed detached way of making fun of the collapse of the empire which disarms believers.

Well, we're all different (Thank the Lord.) I can only write in a way which is natural for me, and about things that compel me to write about them in the first place. I can't be something I'm not. This may limit me sometimes to a diary audience of myself, on some (or indeed most) of the pieces, but I've tried writing for other blogs in a style that they prefer, and I'm afraid I just can't hack it being anything other than myself.

I am not sure you can attack statism head on with people that believe in its necessity without causing them to get defensive and tighten their position.

Yes, you're right. Which is why I always try to direct any who stray across these few 'bits' in the Blogosphere, as quickly as I can towards Mises.org and/or Mr. Rockwell and Mr. Tucker.

I personally find their work too 'American', however, as I'm sure many British people might, so I try to wrap it with a British spin, to get them interested, and then send them over to our spiritual leaders, especially anything done by Professor Ralph Raico. Once I'm done with the LeFevre commentaries (in about 27 years), I'm going to do the same with anything the good Professor has done. This is mainly for my own self-education, to clarify his thoughts. If anyone else wants to read them, great. But I think if anything, I'm gradually becoming a full-time Raicoian, if such a thing exists! ;-)

As unpleasant as it might seem, I think we have to attack things from the side and from the rear.

We have a gay comedian in this country, Julian Clary, who would love to get his teeth into those remarks...oh no, I'm doing it now too! :-)

How do you free young people's minds?

You just, and I say just advisedly, do whatever you can to get the government out of education, and in this country, continually deride the BBC and undermine its current right to tax the people as much as it likes, to then pay its favorite broadcasters salaries in the millions, and pump out endless documentaries about the horrors of global warming. Think of PBS with a right to tax you $250 dollars a year, and whatever else on top it feels like, on a year-by-year basis.

Can you systemetize teaching freedom?

The free market systematizes itself, spontaneously, but only when government is removed from hampering it. We don't have to coerce anyone. We just have to get the government out of the way. And with the way the British government's programmes are collapsing, if we just keep wearing away at it, I'm confident the whole thing will eventually fall in a heap.

I love Bastiat, Mises, Rothbard, and Rockwell; but the thought of forcing anybody to read them changes them into something they aren't.

Simply letting people know they exist, is enough. A child is curious, say, and asks the teacher a question. "Sir, how long will it take Global Warming to make the summers hotter, sir." Obviously, sir doesn't want to answer that, so obfuscates his way out of it. The child then gets home and does a bit of Googling. And lo, hits the AngloAustrian article on why Global Warming is a load of old pants. The article is FULL of relevant links to Mises.org. The child follows these, and then educates himself or herself. That's all we have to do, though once again, I use the word all advisedly.

I think the best we can hope for is to foster a dissatisfaction with the state and self reliance will follow in many.

Bang on the nail, sir.

As self reliance grows, interest in the philosophy of freedom will grow.

Exactement, monsieur.

Thank you for occasionally popping over and reading the thoughts of a mono-maniac. And good luck with doing your bit over there to get rid of Leviathan. I'll keep chipping away over here.

And even if we just relaxed the stranglehold of public education a little bit, like say through vouchers....

Ah, well, errr..., Mr. d., I think before you start waving the voucher flag you really might want to listen to this MP3 file:

The Economics and Politics of Education: An Interview with Robert Murphy

http://www.mises.org/multimedia/mp3/interviews/Murphy2.mp3

Vouchers could be the way the government finally gets a complete lock on even those last vestiges of freedom still barely alive in the private educational sector. And do you really want your children to be educated on the proceeds of money forcibly extracted from other people? Beware the power and the temptation of the Ring to do good in the world of Middle Earth. For to wield it, is always to increase the power of evil.

Gekko said...

"Jack I think you are taking yourself too seriously."
Personally I think it's a cracking style - most entertaining, especially for those of us in the choir. ;-)

"And even if we just relaxed the stranglehold of public education a little bit, like say through vouchers"
The voucher thing is a contentious issue on the basis that the state isn't just going to hand out the money but rather it will require the recipient schools to meet it's own self-serving standards and agenda before it will agree to pay, and thus drag schools even further into the clammy mitt of the state.

"Is it still a Union Jack, or does it have southern stars on it yet?"
LOL, The Union Jack went as soon as the UK (bless her) voted in that bunch of socialist parasites who currently sap the national wealth and the country was overrun with asset-wealthy Grauniad reading pseudo-intellectual lefties. Of course when I came out here the bastards followed me and NZ voted in a 'me-too' Blair-wannabee turd-way lefty tribe who have had their pork-fattened arses plonked firmly on the parliamentary seats ever since. I'm still torn as to whether they remain less objectionable than Gordon "Red" Brown or not, but then I can't afford a UK house anymore either ;-)

"New Zealand, a home for Objectivists who are taken seriously? Wow! :-)"
Thus far they're not ;-) I've had plenty run-ins with them though, they're great sport for a bored anarachist! But at least they understand what I'm ranting about and engage even if they do spit at the very mention of the name Rothbard...

"Are you still having a depopulation problem down there, with all the Maoris and entrepreneurs moving to Australia? Maybe one day they'll all wake up and find all of the pigs have flown away and taken all their pork with them."
The recent Aussie tax cuts have livened things up a bit. It will be interesting to see if whoever is the last one out of NZ will turn off the lights or not. I mean we have to keep up the clean green image right? :-)

Great blog dude. Keep it up!

Anonymous said...

Well if anarcho-capitalists are the new homosexuals then to quote one person who shall remain nameless, they will have to be physically removed to preserve the libertarian order. Talk about jack boots. Thus the reason I could not participate in your poll as it left out the libertarian option: none of the above.

And the Objectivists in New Zealand are not taken seriously by anyone there. They are a joke without the humour. A leader without a following, a guru without his cult. There are lots of libertarians but any that are really decent refuse to have anything to do with that group.

Jack Maturin said...

Thus the reason I could not participate in your poll as it left out the libertarian option: none of the above.

Such a libertarian option ought to be made compulsory, I reckon.

voice said...

I'm not sure if it's different because I'm in the U.S. (Texas), but my wife and I are way open about our beliefs. My dad thinks I'm a little weird, and my father-in-law is a bit of a proto-libertarian-ancap who thinks we're a little weird, but not quite as weird as my dad does.

My coworkers think I'm a little off but respect my beliefs and give them a fair hearing and often agree with more than half of what I have to say. I can actually whip up a bit of passion when I get going in my speechmaking around the water cooler. They want anarcho-capitalism, they just don't fully know that they do.

Jack Maturin said...

What are these 'beliefs' that your proto-libertarian-ancap father-in-law thinks are a bit weird?

I think as well that everyone, including socialists, want anarcho-capitalism in all aspects of their lives - at least in their private lives.

If you don't believe me, try picking up the iPod of the next socialist you see, and walking off with it. Witness the vociferous stream of abuse you'll get for daring to help yourself to their private property.

"But isn't all property theft?", you might ask, which will confuse the buggers.

But when it comes to the magic of government, all bets are off. Somehow this religion we've all been indoctrinated with means I cannot steal the iPod of a socialist, but via government, this socialist can steal far more from me via the taxation process.

Oh well. It's only a phase humanity is going through, I'm sure. We've come a real long way real quickly since the Lydians invented gold money. The stone age lasted 95,000 years, and the age of money has so far lasted about 3,000 years.

In the fully ancap future, of 100,000 years in the future, they will study our age with enormous interest. But mostly with hilarity for our belief in the divine sanction of government.

Well, that's what I hope, anyway! :-)