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How big is the leap between Anarchism and Minarchism?

As someone who is still young, my political views have been in a state of flux for a few years now. While I've been fairly libertarian as long as I've cared about politics, I'm still trying to figure some things out.

However, in the past few years, I'd like to think that I've learned a thing or two. First and foremost, I've come to realize that at work in the world are two diametrically opposed ideas: Statism and Individualism. While Statism (at best) seeks what a small group of people thinks is best for a large group of people, Individualism claims that to do this is both immoral and inefficient. The Individualist views coercion as the greatest evil. To coerce is to claim ownership of another's life, property, and all that come with these.

Therefore, I humbly ask you all your opinion on the question: "How far can this axiom be taken?" To be completely ideologically consistent, must one subscribe to an Anarchist or Voluntar(y)ist philosophy, or does Minarchism best protect the rights of the minority, perhaps similar to how a republic tempers a pure democracy?

If you'd like, feel free to also discuss any other implications of this divide, whether it be the effect on the Liberty movement, changing perceptions on Anarchism in society, or any other application. Thanks for your help, and I'm looking forward to the discussion!



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Sorry, It's my bedtime and I'm cranky.

I apologize Anna, It's late and I usually don't call my fellow Paulites names, but that tired old Somalia argument really irks my goat. ;)

There is a wealth of information on sites like mises.org, & even a lot on wikipedia that can show you the backwardsness of calling Somalia today an anarchy and then saying anarchy is flawed because of it.

In fact it's exactly the same thing as a liberal saying that Republicanism is flawed and therefor Paul's followers are all bad people.

We're not really republicans, just like Somalia is not really an anarchy. It's now just a war-torn battleground between foreign interests.

There was a time though that Somalia was a real anarchy, before you and I were born, and they had some pretty awesome things to teach us back then, such as their Xeer system of law.

HONEST RON 2012!
LEGALIZE LIBERTY!

Lol, that's okay, I admit that I've done it before too

There is one form of anarchy in history that I know of that kind of worked. According to the biblical record, ancient Israel, before the time of the kings, had no real government. They had judges which helped settle disputes and a universal moral/religious law. But that would only work among a moral, willing people, and I wouldn't exactly call Americans that. Plus it was not total freedom that some anarchists want.

“It is not our part to master all the tides of the world, but to do what is in us for the succour of those years wherein we are set, uprooting the evil in the fields that we know, so that those who live after may have clean earth to till." -J.R.R. Tolkien

That's just not what modern Anarchists are talking about at all.

Your example sounds kind of offensive to modern Anarchists, which are basically just libertarians who want even less government than the forefathers proposed. (Which wasn't much at all.)

I'm not saying it would be an easy transition, but the AnCap vision for a stable society is very realistic and takes all of these concerns into consideration. Real, serious proposals for laws, enforcement, justice, infrastructure, utilities, human rights, civil defense, education, you name it; whatever the issue is they've got a very fair and well-considered answer on sites like Mises.org where these things have been mulled over for decades.

HONEST RON 2012!
LEGALIZE LIBERTY!

Would one have had to

Would one have had to successfully convince you ahead of time how the agrarian southern economy would have *worked* in order for you to agree that the slaves must be freed?

There will likely never be a

There will likely never be a fully an-cap society as there will always be groups of people who want to establish governments.

Yep

But in a world where people overwhelmingly respect the liberties of others, those seeking to rule over others via force would be seen for what they really are; sociopathic and worthy of whatever defensive force they came upon in their quest for power.

Anarchist at heart, but...

YOu just touched upon what I have oft times pondered.

There are many humans who do not want to respect others but to control and profit from them - the unenlightened predator and slavemasters among us. So in an attempt to protect ourselves from them we willingly start the cycle by trading a little liberty for security. This gives birth to a cute little, baby government. We feed it by giving up more and more liberty for security and government grows and grows and G R O W S into a monster with no resemblence what so ever to the cute little baby we spawned. Monster government continues to root out and consume all Liberty it can find. Monster government finally fails when all Liberty is consumed as the people finally revolt.

And we start the cycle over...for the same reasons.

It would appear to me that until humans evolve (spiritually??) to the point that they no longer prey on one another -- to understand and embrace "Do No Harm" we are stuck in this cycle.

I believe our movement is vital to this process of evolution that is required for a truly Free, AnCap society to exist for any appreciable span of time. So we need to continue speaking the axioms of Liberty to attract more and more to it's simple truth. Truth is Power, Force is weak. And government is meerly force.

If my need to be RIGHT is greater than my desire for TRUTH, then I will not recognize it when it arrives ~ Libertybelle

Two principles

That the commuinity must fully recognise and recompense the contribution of the individual.

That the individual must fully recognise and recompense the contribution of the community.

Any societal premise that doesn't satisfy both those conditions will fail to provide an equitable society.

Any societal premise that succeeds in satisfying both premises will be attacked by those who see benefit in one or the other being breached; ie pretty much everybody.

One Principle

The Non-Aggression Principle

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at LFJournal.com


"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

And how exactly

do you plan to get everyone in an anarchist society to adhere to such a principle?

“It is not our part to master all the tides of the world, but to do what is in us for the succour of those years wherein we are set, uprooting the evil in the fields that we know, so that those who live after may have clean earth to till." -J.R.R. Tolkien

The same way minarchists do, with one exception.

In a voluntary society we wouldn't allow for a State which violates the Non-Aggression Principle.

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at LFJournal.com


"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

Minarchists are just Unimaginative Anarchists.

Once you realize that less government is a good thing, it is only a matter of time until you are an anarchist, period.

The reason so many people (like the american forefathers) and Ron Paul propose Minarchy is not because they haven't got there yet though; it's because the vast masses really do not have enough imagination and understanding to adjust to the mindset of anarchy in our lifetimes.

In other words, the forefathers, and Dr. Paul, SETTLED on minarchy because it was an achievable goal in their lifetimes.

I'm quite torn between the two myself; I'd be happy living in a civilization like the one our forfathers first made, but I'd have that nagging feeling the whole time that it's just as temporary as the last attempt was. :(

Only full anarchy can be permanent, if it can be achieved. For those curious about how to do this, check out the huge free library at Mises.org to start learning. It's not a small topic, but at least I can say it is very factual and there are real, practical answers there to all of these types of questions.

Thought you'd like to see this pic too:

Natural Progression to Anarchy

HONEST RON 2012!
LEGALIZE LIBERTY!

Jefferson was against anarchy

He wrote that while no government was ideal, it would *never* work among large numbers of people. So he favored a limited government within the confines of our Constitution.

“It is not our part to master all the tides of the world, but to do what is in us for the succour of those years wherein we are set, uprooting the evil in the fields that we know, so that those who live after may have clean earth to till." -J.R.R. Tolkien

A.K.A. Settling

You can tell by that statement that anarchy is what he wanted if there were no problems with the masses, right?

One day there won't be if we keep educating them all.

The internet is helping tremendously with this, as we Paulites know so well.

HONEST RON 2012!
LEGALIZE LIBERTY!

There will always be "problems with the masses"

Some people believe, and I presume you do as well, that man can someday advance to a level of perfection where he will be able to live in completely harmony with his fellow man, rendering political government essentially useless over him. This is a blatant denial of human nature itself and a view that Jefferson himself was critical of (it was popular among some Enlightenment philosophers at the time). There will never be a "one day" where there won't be "problems with the masses" and man can live in complete harmony with total freedom from all government.

“It is not our part to master all the tides of the world, but to do what is in us for the succour of those years wherein we are set, uprooting the evil in the fields that we know, so that those who live after may have clean earth to till." -J.R.R. Tolkien

Of course I'm not a utopian...

You're really barking up the wrong tree here; of course I am not saying that the internet and some more education is going to lead to a harmonious utopia!

What you haven't factored in is that there are very good replacements waiting in the wings for things like police forces and court systems that do not require any kind of central government.

You can have a very advanced civilization right now by removing centralized power. Anarchy simply means "Without Rulers," nothing more and nothing less. The Anarcho-Capitalist vision of anarchy, to which Ron Paul obviously subscribes, is a far more fair society than anyone who believes in the state could ever imagine.

Please go read more about it at Mises.org. Their huge, free library has lots of Ron Paul and other great thinkers of our time in it.

HONEST RON 2012!
LEGALIZE LIBERTY!

I have a feeling our Ron is a

I have a feeling our Ron is a closeted AnCap. He has been a follower of Mises and Rothbard from the start. Lew Rockwell, the president of the Mises Institute has been his congressional chief of staff! He has been around that circle long before even his political career.

If you want to destroy the state, what better way to do it than attack its currency? The very thing it relies on for legitimacy.

Ron Paul is a Voluntarist.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BoUrrlbDoVs

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at LFJournal.com


"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

anarcho-capitalism is

anarcho-capitalism is voluntaryism. when there is no state, and voluntary transactions are not regulated by uninvolved parties, what else would you call it.

I know that.

You are preaching to the choir.

Voluntarism is the why and Anarcho-capitalism is the how of a stateless society, they are inseparable parts of libertarian anarchism.

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at LFJournal.com


"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

The ultimate contradiction:

Socialism is antithetical to liberty, private property and the free market, but we need a small element of socialism to protect liberty, private property and the free market.

The state is the ultimate contradiction.

False. We do NOT need them at all.

There is no contradiction here because the only reason you THINK we need that small element of socialism here is because the state has brainwashed you to think so.

You don't need them.

You have been taught that Firemen, the police, and the Court system are synonymous with the state, and can't exist without the state running them, but this is false. There are historical and even modern examples of all state-run services being run privately somewhere. Check out the history of the Pinkertons or visit Judge.me if you want examples.

HONEST RON 2012!
LEGALIZE LIBERTY!

I don't know how you missed that I agree with you.

I am an anarchist. I was demonstrating that the contradiction was ridiculous, as are all contradictions.

Sorry bro!

Lol, had to read deeper than I thought I would.

HONEST RON 2012!
LEGALIZE LIBERTY!

Great question Ben

The movement, unfortunately is moving in the direction of all or nothing thinking. I wrote a piece related to this today:

http://www.examiner.com/article/anarchy-conspiracy-drugs-and...

I believe humans have an innate drive toward relationship and a propensity to organize in order to create order. Organization is another word for self-government. So to assume that no-government is possible or even desirable is wrong. The idea is to organize and deconstruct regularly to keep the system vibrant and free.

Government is us. Right now we suck and we need to throw ourselves out and start anew. Keep the wheat and throw out the chaff. But don't assume that we will not need to repeat the process in the next generation.

Anarchy is incompatible with human nature

"If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary." -James Madison

“It is not our part to master all the tides of the world, but to do what is in us for the succour of those years wherein we are set, uprooting the evil in the fields that we know, so that those who live after may have clean earth to till." -J.R.R. Tolkien

Your circular logic

People are bad so we need a government made up of people are bad so we need a government made up of people are bad so we need a government made up of people...

LOL

We are afraid people will steal from us so let's set up an organization to steal from us to protect us from thieves.

We are afraid of sociopaths so let's set up an organization of sociopaths to protect us from the sociopaths.

It is truly sad that so many people don't see the glaringly obvious problem with this logic.

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at LFJournal.com


"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

There's no faulty logic. The

There's no faulty logic. The United States was set up as a government by the landowners for the landowners(no one else could vote) in order to protect themselves from the innately socialist/monarchist/economically ignorant lower classes. Rule by the property owners, literally the exact opposite system from Marxism. The Masses acting Collectively are the enemy of the free market and always have been, hence the Constitutional system restricting the populist blob from plunging us into poverty for as long as possible. The division of labor, religion, and the IQ bell curve produce their own political philosophies.

Ventura 2012

True -- US was founded (owners over ownerless)

But at first is was more stringent -- not just owners but only the Wealthies WASP owners could vote.

The massess are NOT the enemy fo free-markets -- How anti-Misesian.

According to Mises a free-market is NOT dominated by owners rather it is dominated by Consumers.

The "massess" you speak of were the ones who blindly followed "the Church" (Anglican or Catholic) and who blindly believed that Royalty were Divinely appointed.

This is not so much the case today.

A "waking" up would defintely be in order.