Saturday, February 18, 2006

This is what free market anarchism looks like.

In a free market anarchy you would be expected to pay for any service you require and this would all work out without a government. The Larry Niven short story Cloak of Anarchy talks about taking a free park with robots that prevent violence and then turning it into an anarchy - it doesn't work out. Verner Vinge has several stories set in his Bobble/Peace War series where you pay for your police protection or your legal jurisdiction because there is no government. It is all very libertarian.

Some poor guy in Missouri didn't join a rural fire department or pay his dues, so he got to watch his property burn. The firefighters did come to the property to ensure that no one was hurt, but they didn't fight the fire.

This is a great real life example of these anarchy, or libertarian science fiction thought experiments. Would you rather have dues or taxes?

Found this one at Fark.

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The Virtual Ranger said...

Blimey! This tale made me do a double-take. I would not have believed that such a thing could occur if I hadn't read it here. Perhaps I'm just a soft european liberal. I recall going on a school outing to an old village and having to draw the quaint historic fire insurance plate on the 300-yr old buildings, from the days when English towns had subscription-only fire services. As far as I know the concept hasn't been seen any more recently than that over here. I imagine those English people who liked that kind of life just got up and emigrated somewhere. I wonder where they all ended up?

Josh said...

I would say that free market anarchy does, in fact work.

As a consumer, and entrepreneur in the parallel market, and as someone who is genuinely above the "law" in that I can simply bribe the corrupt government into allowing me to compete with them, I am living proof that the free market anarchist philosophy works.

I needn't even fire a single shot, though if I am forced to, I know who to shoot in order to achieve the maximum results. I am not foolish enough to attack the military, or police. A group of twelve idiots, some ambitious moron elected by an imaginary district, and an old cretin dressed in black are easily swayed by the threat of force of arms. And it is they who have the true power.

This is why government fails, because even if I break a rule, you still gave me the right to be tried and acquitted by a jurry of my peers.

But look at it this way, if we didn't have the boogey man known as the government, I probably would not have gotten this far.