I understand the argument that taxes are wrong but I don’t think that libertarians offer a viable alternative. First off, your claim that the government is completely unaccountable is wrong. We have elections where we can decide we want a change. If you think that the main parties are too close to one another then it’s up to you to form a new party or change the discourse in the existing ones.
Our alternative system is voluntary cooperation. Before slavery was abolished you wouldn’t expect abolitionists to “offer a viable alternative” because some farmers had become used to the slave labour and it might inconvenience them to lose their workers. No, Slavery is wrong, by any empathetic human yardstick, and so it was ended. After that if the plantation owners want to voluntarily offer those people work for a wage they both arrive at, then that’s between them, but slavery is wrong, and so is theft.
I’ll change “completely unaccountable” to “almost completely unaccountable” then. The truth is elections are every 4 years. And just because one candidate gets a majority of “votes” (from people who usually don’t even know what thy’re voting for) it doesn’t make it okay for the minority to be stolen from to pay for things they don’t approve of. In the private sector I can IMMEDIATELY “vote” not to fund something by simply opting out. So no 4 year wait, instead it’s immediate, and no compromising, I can decide EXACTLY what I want to fund.
I often hear that it’s “up to me” to create a new party if I disagree with the existing ones. This is shifting the blame to the victim. If me and my friends all “Vote” that it’s okay to rob you, then you are the victim, and we can hardly ask you to devote every moment of your spare time frantically trying to rally enough support so you’re no longer in the minority and can “vote” not to be stolen from. It’s a crazy idea. Theft is wrong. Tyranny of the majority is wrong. And I’ll pose the same idea back to you: If you think it’s “up to me” to change the system, why can’t I say it’s “up to you” to voluntarily setup your own NHS or Welfare system on the free market and try to persuade people peacefully and voluntarily through persuasion to fund your charity?
Saturday, 18 September 2010