The State Has Too Much Power

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The state has too much power.

I know this is an oft stated platitude spewed out by both the Left and (mostly) the Right whenever it suits their ends, but it’s true.

It’s objectively true.

From its very inception the state has too much power. The second it is allowed to do things that would likely result in prison time for the rest of us, it has too much power. The power to steal and use force to accomplish its ends—aka to tax, set tariffs, and prevent other governments from attempting to form within its territory—it has gone too far. Indeed, all the most basic characteristics which define a state are an overreach of what could be called legitimate or ethical power.

And though most people aren’t ready to hear that, it must resonate at some level—even for hardcore progressive liberals—that the scope of government power is far too large. The fear and sadness felt by so many after Mr. Trump’s election is ridiculous both to the extent that it is warranted, and to the extent that it is not.

To the extent that this fear and sadness can be justified, it is outrageous that we let government power grow to such vastness. To the extent that it is just liberal progressive whining, it is pathetic that these people put so much stock in political outcomes.

I’m no huge fan of the US Constitution, but it’s safe to say the intention of its authors was not to have the president matter enough to warrant sobbing when the other guy wins. The job of the president was primarily to say “yes” or “no” to legislation originated and passed in Congress, and to lead the military in times of war. That’s it.

Needless to say, we have come a long way since then.

All the tears shed and anger felt by liberals prove one thing: that liberals especially, and statists in general, have little understanding of reality or human nature. These people can be appropriately described as utopians.

They object to Trump building a wall, but not to the fact that the president has the (perceived) power to build a wall.

They object to the possibility of Trump deporting immigrants, but not to the fact that he is even able to do that.

Liberals and statists think you can allow the government such a wild array of power over our lives but then think that they won’t use it. Or that those granted this power will use it in a “nice” way in line with fanciful ideas of an imagined “common good”.

Meanwhile, all the evidence and all of history point to the contrary.

The more power you grant to the state, the more it will attract those who you probably wouldn’t want to have it under any circumstances. This election is a prime example. You had a war-mongering sociopath or a bumbling idiot–both of whom have the audacity to think they know what’s best for millions of people.

So I’m glad you’re crying. I’m glad you’re scared. All of you who look to government force to solve society’s problems. All of you self-righteous endorsers of state violence who now feel the sting of the government you’ve created.

The power that Trump has to potentially ruin your life was carefully fomented and built up by your idol presidents. Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Wilson, FDR, LBJ, and Obama to name few. These are the men who have made the state what it is today. They slowly and carefully made violence more and more acceptable in human affairs. It was their work that now allows Trump to touch your life so palpably.

People say libertarians and anarcho-capitalists are wide-eyed utopians. That our systems would require angels to function well. But it is exactly the opposite.

The statists are the utopians. They are the ones that think you can create a massive, all-encompassing state and have it only used for good. They think you can give some humans such awesome power over others and that they will use it to help society and not to enrich and empower themselves and their friends.

Libertarians and free market anarchists understand that power only attracts the corrupted and will only serve to corrupt the corrupted further. This is why we reject the legitimacy of force in the normal conduct of human affairs. That is why we reject the state (or in the case of minarchist libertarians, an all-encompassing state) as an effective and ethical form of governance.

The easiest way to insure that no one will use state power to oppress others and help themselves is to remove the state from the equation. The best way to make sure no one builds a wall between the US and Mexico is to remove the ability and unlimited tax funds for them to do so.

So if you are feeling the sting and the fear today, please understand that the problem is not Trump. The problem is a government and Office of President that has grown to the point to be able to cause you such fear.

Is it right for one man or any group of people to have such power over you?

Leave your utopian ideas behind. See the light, beauty, and order that stems from voluntary human interaction.

Leave legitimated initiation of force in the waste bin of history.



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