The Success of humankind depends on Freedom, and Freedom depends on understanding what it is and implementing the political technology it requires.
6-1 An Alliance Of The Meek
In the not too distant past, it required the full-time efforts of most human beings just to keep us all fed and sheltered. Now, thanks to a wealth of technology, that can be accomplished by a fraction of us. What should we be doing with the rest of our available human potential?
Should we while away the hours trying to keep each other entertained? Should we spend our time making better and better TVs? Would becoming known throughout the galaxy as the species who made by far the best TVs be a fitting epitaph for humankind?
Should we devote all our energies to helping the Aristocrat wannabes among us accumulate the money and power they need to hijack the Human Project, and hope they know what they're doing?
It's shocking to try to imagine how much wisdom it would take to actually be qualified to run other people's lives, and then to realize that people who really are wise want nothing to do with Slavery. Who does that leave?
While Recorded History is an invaluable tool, it's a shadow of what it could've been because it has tended to be a history of the Tyrants, by the Tyrants, and for the Tyrants. But it is the Meek who are the unsung heroes of the Human Story. We've come this far not because of Tyrants, but in spite of them.
The time for Aristocratic grandeur has come and gone. It's time for the Meek to come into their own. The Human Cause isn't about political grandeur, it's about Political Equality.
That's a job not for Coercion, Power Accumulation and made-up law, but for Defense, Power Retention and Real Law. Human-invented law is incapable of creating anything other than a Barristocracy, unless we all want to become lawyers. Do we all want to become lawyers, or can we find better uses for our time and talents?
A Free Society isn't Ruled by Aristocrats, Barristocrats, bureaucrats, technocrats, or even democrats. A Free Society isn't Ruled at allonly Defended. And the only thing Defense has to do is protect every individual's Right to give or withhold consent. Anything more is mission creep, or just a different mission altogether.
Aggression is Slavery and Slavery is Aggression. The purpose of Defense is to thwart Aggression, meaning that Defense is Freedom and Freedom is Defense. If you don't know the difference between Aggression and Defenseyou can't tell or just plain don't carethen you don't know the difference between Slavery and Freedom.
And if you don't care about that, you should because the express purpose of Slavery might as well be to kick the legs out from under the Human Projectthat's how wasteful it is of the Human Resource. Slavery is low-quality and Freedom is high-quality. Under Freedom, human society functions as it was meant to, with individual brains controlling individual bodies.
Some people want to bet on Slavery and that's their prerogative. It isn't their prerogative to force Slavery on the rest of us. Our common stake in the Human Cause obliges each of us to ask what impact Slaverythe Excellence-killeris most likely to have on it. What the proponents of Slavery have to wonder is if there mightn't be a reason humans have the capacity for Excellence, and whether that capacity is something we can really afford to waste.
Everybody wants something from "Santa Claus" government, but government only has what it took from Real People at gunpoint. Government can offer nothing, nothing, nothing that's better or more valuable to you than ownership of your own lifeand the natural role for a Coercive institution like government is Master, not Servant.
People who believe in government as Master need to be honest enough to declare that. People who believe in government as Servant need to be realistic enough to understand that government is incapable of serving Freedom directly. The one service government can provide is to assist in the creation of its pro-Freedom successor, and then get out of the way.
The question concerning Coercion+Defense government is not whether it permits people to do good works in some instances and others to do bad works, but rather what is the impact of Coercion in general, and mightn't those who're interested in good works do even better without having it as an obstacle.
Freedom and Slavery are mutually exclusive. Freedom is one sort of goal, and Slavery is its polar opposite. If we think we can achieve a goal like Freedom by employing the methods of Slavery, we're spectacularly kidding ourselves. For those who're still unclear on which methods associate with which goal, here's a recap:
|Power Accumulation||Power Retention|
|Political Arrogance||Political Humility|
|Civilian Disarmament||Armed Citizenry|
|Political Censorship||Free Speech|
A study of even the best governments ever produced reveals an unhealthy presence of the methods of Slavery. While there has been a historical trend toward Freedom, in the present day that trend has been decidedly reversed. The Marxian wet dream of global government (e.g. the United Nations) doesn't emphatically embrace ANY of the methods of Freedom. What does that tell you?
Slavery is bad and Freedom is good. That's how un-complicated the world of politics really is when you get down to basics. Slavery happens when some people own others, and Freedom happens when people own themselves. When enough people who're content simply to own their own lives can figure out how to become cooperatively effective against the machinations of wannabe Power Thieves, then Real Freedom will happen for the first time in human history.
So, time to start the Revolution, right?
Wrong. Ask the French, who rid themselves of Louis XVI, only to wind up with Robespierre, then Napoleon. Ask the Russians, who deposed Nicholas II, only to wind up with Lenin, then Stalin.
Revolution is an absolutely terrible idea, as a rule. If you've let things deteriorate politically to the point where revolution is your best available option, you've already screwed up. The best result it ever produced, the U.S. Constitution, could only be characterized as Limited Slavery, and even that result was an outright miracle. It was the product of a unique group of individuals the likes of which may never again be seen until after Freedom is a done deal. Statist societies do not produce many people of that caliber!
The bottom line is that Freedom simply cannot be created out of the chaos of revolution. The strong Defensive institutions on which it depends require much thought and experimentation, and therefore time. If they were easy to produce they would have been produced long ago.
Not only mustn't limited government (to the degree that such a thing still exists) be destroyed, it must be preserved as a necessary launching pad for Real Freedomuntil such time as Freedom's underlying institutions can be demonstrated to be ready for primetime.
Limited Slavery is not Real Freedom, but it is an irreplaceable step in that direction. It creates some "breathing space" under Oppressiona window of opportunity to develop the kind of pro-Freedom institutions that would never be allowed to be born under less-limited Slavery.
Self-ownership, which has never happened before, can only be produced by something that's never been done before: Shrinking Coercion+Defense government until it goes away entirely, having been replaced by new institutions that keep the Defense and lose the Coercion.
Left on its own, of course, government does the exact opposite. It grows over time, meaning that Coercion also grows over time. We don't need to rely solely on theory to understand thisour own experience bears it out.
Unfortunately, Limited Slavery is very tempting, very seductive. Come to that, a lot of people find Unlimited Slavery tempting. It all looks so effortless and delegatorya chance to drift through life doing whatever we're told while others take responsibility for everything, including us.
There's no doubt that Limited Slavery is far superior to Slavery. It offers a little less scope for the unholiest ambitions of wannabe Slaveowners, and thereby less risk of political tragedy for Real People. That's unquestionably a net gain for the prospects of the Human Cause.
But in the same way that Limited Slavery is superior to Slavery, it's likewise inferior to Real Freedom. In addition, it's inherently unstable and over time tends to devolve back into Unlimited Slavery. That makes it a poor choice as an ultimate political goal. Limited Slavery is really only good for one thing: taking the next step to Real Freedom.
It's true that a Barristocracy is no more suited to taking the next step than it is to implementing Real Freedom directly, except that what cannot hope to be sustained indefinitely might just be managed for a limited duration. On the other hand, if government based on made-up law can't be tamed long enough to serve the creation of a pro-Freedom successor, why should we believe that it can be tamed forever as Freedom's loyal servant?
So however difficult it is to harness democratic government for the production of the Defensive institutions needed to replace it, it at least has the advantage of being temporary. Trying to use democracy to create Freedom directly is forever, and is doomed by the inherent incompatibility of the two.
Democracy naturally tends toward Slavery, but it can be bent, so to speak, in the direction of Freedom. It all depends on the understanding and determination of political majorities. If the political will to replace government and human-invented law with self-ownership can be mustered, then democracy provides a corresponding way.
Human-invented law can be used to grant relief from human-invented law, for the purpose of testing and perfecting non-Coercive alternatives. Government Monopoly can be relaxed enough to allow competing approaches to show their superiority, with the best performers being made available for wider adoption.
Now, no one can think that Marxists will give up on Slavery willingly. Marxist Thugs claim, and Marxist Dupes actually believe, that Slavery is the path to a "socially just" Utopia. The need for Marxists to convert (what's left of) the United States in particular into just another dismal Marxian Plantation is a given, because competition of any kind makes Marxism look as bad as it really is. So a contest between Freedom and Marxism is absolutely unavoidable.
But the good news is that Aristocrats are a minority, by definition. Slavery is a pyramid scheme, built around a small number of Slaveowners at the top and a large number of Slaves on the bottom. That makes it inherently precarious. Also, should Marxist Dupes ever get wind of the fact that Slavery and Social Justice are really mutually exclusive goals, they're likely to abandon ship.
The other good news is that when the pro-Slavery/anti-Slavery camps are as evenly matched as they've been in the U.S. for the past several decades, a political minority can have a big impact. Even a small number of Libertarians can be enough to tilt the political divide, by making sure that the less-Libertarian candidates in a 2-way race lose, and that lying, faithless politicians are sent packing.
Karl Marx advised the workers of the world to uniteunder the yoke of Joe Stalin. Exchanging one Oppressor for an even worse one is an excellent way to go about perpetuating Slavery.
Libertarians will also want to unite, that being the only way to outmatch the Political Power available to Power Accumulators, but they won't want to do it under just another Power Accumulation regime. That accomplishes nothing. A different kind of institution is neededone based on cooperation and Power Retention, meaning that individuals retain their Right to give or withhold consent. Such institutions can provide a forum for Real Leadershipthe kind that doesn't have to resort to Coercion.
Freedom isn't a "something for nothing" proposition. In order to receive the guarantee of self-ownership, it's necessary to give up the possibility of owning others (or being owned by others, depending on which way the struggle for Power goes).
Self-important types can be expected to view that as an unattractive exchange. Besides, they're pretty sure they know who's going to come out on top in their Aristocratic political fantasy.
Unfortunately for them, their somebodies-versus-the-nobodies worldview is bankrupt and always has been. Attention, Elitists! All the little "nobodies" ARE the Somebodies, and Aristocrat wannabes are delusional. They should stick to what they do bestinventing fiction.
Freedom will also take a lot of work and sacrifice. But Real People aren't unacquainted with thosethey're the ones who've been doing the work and making the sacrifices all along. And the payoff is huge, not just for individuals but for the Human Cause itself.
What you've seen here undoubtedly contains errors and many omissions. It's a sketch, not a blueprint. Working out all the specifics is a job for the ingenuity of many, including you.
Not only can you participate, you must. Sovereignty delegated is Sovereignty lost.
Step Number One is developing an accurate understanding of what Real Freedom actually is. If you don't even know what a thing is, how are you supposed to recognize whether or not you have it? Here's a pop quiz that may help:
Freedom means . . .
Step Number Two is seeking out the cooperation of like-minded individualsas many as possible. It will take a very large number of Real People to offset the political weight of the Elite and their clueless supporters. If you find yourself in an organization that wants to give power over you to someone else, whether through democracy, fraud or any other technique, say "Adios, Bozos!" and go join or start a better one based on Power Retention.
Freedom can only be created by an Alliance of the Meek, not a reliance on the Elite. Aristocrats are obliged to hate Freedom, because Freedom means the end of Aristocracy.
Humankind has waited a long time for Real Freedom. We're still waiting. Who knows, the Klingons may show up in Low Earth Orbit sometime next week to save us from ourselves. (Or would that be the Vulcans?)
But if it's going to be up to us to do the job, we'd better get started, and soon!