I've gotten into some interesting arguments on slashdot lately, and I have this funny feeling that I should clarify my stance on this.
I don't have a desire to see the government toppled through violence. I know for a fact that VIOLENCE WILL NOT end tyranny, neither will voting, nor petitioning, nor begging, nor demanding, nor threatening. NONE of these things has stopped tyranny in the past.
[Snipped out a harsh comment.]
I adhere to the age old concept that "those who are ready, will not ask anything of government, neither help, nor peace, like ripened fruit, they shall drop from the vine and find their own way." I've come to that stage in my life, or am fairly close.
I cannot and will not force any of you to adopt any path, be it better or worse, be it mine or someone else's, and all i can ask is that you do not use your "democratic" process to infringe upon my person, thoughts, or rights. As any actual free man (or woman, I haven't forgotten you, ladies) can tell you, of the present or the past: "All rights are reserved, except those expressly waived."
I frankly believe that coercive, involuntary government is an idea whose time is past... Its time was past some 400 years ago or longer.
Judging from some of my arguments here, and the replies I got, my opinion that no one can be "saved" or "convinced" has been upheld. We each "save" or "convince" ourselves.
As the saying goes. "Tyrannical totalitarian government and its various agencies and abuses will not go away when people beg it to leave, it will not be crushed by force of arms when the people rebel against it, or foreigners invade it and bring their government in its place. Government will only disappear when men and women behave as free men and free women and neither ASK anything of it, nor GIVE anything unto government or its agents. Only then, will tyranny and its agencies disappear from among men."
What most collectivist types don't understand is that there is no "collective". Even in the most tightly knit groups, they are not one unit, they are still a group of individuals, joined together in a common endeavor. Regardless, they are still individuals. There is no "society" there is no "government". These are abstracts that people have somehow come to believe are more real than the flesh and blood beings walking right next to them. Regardless of our definition of reality, a piece of paper in a lawyer's drawer (a corporation) is not a living being, it cannot be contracted with, the individual that handles that paperwork is contracted with. HE, is the one you do business with, not the piece of paper he represents. The vast majority of individuals have come to identify with imposed views. "Canadians are like this and we think Americans are that." "Americans are tough and can kick everyone's ass." "We are better than they are."
People identify with abstracts and even into their old age, never search for who they are individually. Many I've met are in a mental limbo, and it seems to start in the cradle and is force fed until the grave. We have lovely things, TV, Radio, Work... lots of mindless, boring, meaningless, uninspiring work. And of course, we have the eternal quest of "following in someone else's footsteps." If you set back and ask "what the fuck is it all for?" People call you crazy. Lazy. Aimless. And yet they don't see themselves scurrying about in a cage, trying to keep up with the Joneses, or being herded like cattle to wherever the puppeteers would have them go.
Whenever an individual or "the few" are sacrificed for "the benefit of the many", without the fully informed consent of those being sacrificed, there is neither freedom, nor justice, nor any kind of pretense at goodness. While the majority will always feel good when crushing the minority, the majority has rarely, if ever, been on the side of "right" or "good". In fact, judging by historic precedent, the majority, regardless of where, have always had several factors in common, and none of them really all that great.
Lack of courage..
Lack of curiosity.
Lack of initiative.
Lack of vitality.
I believe that time is near, when totalitarian, external, coercive government in all its forms will be seen for what it is, and I think it is nearer than most think, but I neither know WHEN such an enlightenment will occur, nor what will trigger it, nor how it will change things. All I can say is that I've used my various methods from the friendly banter to the more rude and argumentative, to observe other people wherever I've traveled, wherever I've chatted, offline and on, and there are some amongst all, even among the socialists, who "kind of" almost get it. I kind of "almost get it" also. And as far as I can tell, when they finally STOP asking for others to be violated on their behalf, they will be free. It isn't something that needs to be forced, however, since everyone comes to that realization sooner or later. Many do it when they're old, decrepit and their bodies are failing. I prefer to have done it now, because it leaves me more of my life ahead to enjoy.
Perhaps this will clear up some things for those of you I've argued with lately. I bear none of you ill will. Now please excuse me... a glass of Rum and a good friend await me near the grill.