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December 08, 2006

QotD: The Nature of Government

It has been said that politicians are in the business of bribing people with their own money. That is, at their direction, government at various levels employs physical force or the threat of force — exactly like any other bandit — to take away about half of what the average individual earns, and then doles it back out in niggling bits and pieces, while extracting an enormous middleman's fee for the "service".

Unlike a decent, honest bandit, however, government does the same thing with people's freedom, employing its "monopoly of force" to suppress individual liberty, and then "generously" allowing people to get little bits of it back, in return for their compliance with its edicts.

The middleman's fee in this case is the erection of a vast and powerful police state whose Mussolinoid minions strut about in body armor, displaying — and often using — weapons illegally forbidden to everybody else, pushing people around, violating their rights, spying on them, listening to their conversations, reading their mail, and denying them the most intimate physical privacy, examining their body fluids and probing their anatomical cavities as if they were merely livestock.

L. Neil Smith, "Back to Basics, Part Two", Libertarian Enterprise, 2006-12-03

Posted by Nicholas at December 8, 2006 12:33 AM
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