What is the State? I figured it outSubmitted by Tman2000 on Sun, 01/13/2013 - 21:48
I feel like I've had a breakthrough in my informal political theorizing.
I can tell you what the state is, and it's exciting because I know the clear and sure path - the only path - of action towards liberty!!
Before describing the state, allow me to define something else that isn't the state.
I call it the 'General Political Society'. This refers to whatever organization a society embarks upon, within a given territory, to share information/opinions/intentions of a political (use of force, philosophy, law, that which governs behavior of some as it pertains to how they will interact with others) nature.
The General Political Society is not the State. It is merely the sovereign people, acting collectively and voluntarily in a political manner.
Now, the next step is a 'Political Estate'. This is any concentration of power (which exceeds that which an individual man might on average successfully defend against) possessed by any agent with a specific agenda. A gang, a militia, etc. are all 'Political Estates'. Each has its own 'agenda' or set of 'laws' which govern how it will use the power it possesses to govern the behavior of others.
Finally, there is the 'State'. A 'State' is a monopolized 'Political Estate'. In other words, it enforces not only its laws/agenda, but also seeks to eliminate all competing political estates.
If you had a town with 5 gangs, but they shared a sort of 'code of honor' or 'pirate's code'. That 'Code' and the gangs collectively would be a 'State'. If not all the people are touched by the force of the gangs all of the time, then there is a State coexisting with anarchy. If all people in the town are under the rule and supervision of some gang, then the 'State' becomes a 'Total State'. SS numbers, tax collectors, constant surveillance, property tax - these are elements of a 'total state'.
A State which governs, but has the consent of the people, is a Republic. A town can appoint a chief with sole executive, legislative, and judicial authority - as long as they consent generally to this, the resultant State is republican in nature. If everyone wants to be part of one of the gangs, and support the Code, then that is a republican State. Usually, republican States have a democratic process for obtaining 'consent' and constitutional procedures for limiting abuses of power.
The most important secret of what a State is lies in its relationship to the General Political Society.
Basically: States exist unto themselves. NO STATE IS FOUNDED BY THE PEOPLE, THE GENERAL POLITICAL SOCIETY DOES NOT SUSTAIN OR CREATE A STATE.
A State creates itself. If 20 people form a constitutional convention - they and they alone are the new 'State'. When a State starts ruling and enforcing its laws on the people, it does so on its own.
The tricky, nuanced part of the relationship lies in that the General Political Society can express its consent for the existence of a State.
Ultimately, the people themselves, via their right to bear arms, give final consent for participation under the laws and within the apparatus of a State.
A State that tries to take power, against the will of the people, can be opposed. A State that tries to take power, with the consent of the people, will not be opposed.
That's all there is to it.
Again, the key is that States establish themselves. The consent of the people takes the form of an unwritten peace treaty between the State and each person individually.
The point here being to emphasize two things:
1) The State is not established by the people, is an occupying power that can serve a positive end, but which we must choose on our own to obey or not obey.
2) Following from that, it is of the utmost importance that THE PEOPLE ESTABLISH, ORGANIZE, AND ACTIVELY PARTICIPATE IN A GENERAL POLITICAL SOCIETY WITHIN EACH STATE so that the people can maintain their sovereignty despite the presence of the State.
STATES WOULD HAVE US BELIEVE THAT THEY WERE INSTITUTED IN THE ANCIENT PAST VIA AN EXPLICIT SOCIAL CONTRACT WHEREBY WE VOLUNTARILY AND ENTHUSIASTICALLY SURRENDERED OUR SOVEREIGNTY FOREVER AND ALL TIME.
Soon I will post a video to YouTube explaining the structure of a General Political Society, how we should participate in it, and how we can use that participation to reclaim our liberty.