Monday, January 14, 2008

The Anarchist Vote?

If you've read through this blog, you may have noticed that I subscribe to Henry David Thoreau's opinion, namely, "That government is best which governs not at all." In other words, I am an anarchist. Given my enthusiasm for Ron Paul, I've been asked to attend the caucus, or perhaps become a precinct leader. When I point out that I've been happily "un-registered" to vote since 2002, and have no intention of changing that status, I get puzzled replies. If I appear so excited about Dr. Paul's candidacy, why don't I get more involved in the actual political process to get him elected? The answer: voting is an act of violence, and not even the prospect of a Ron Paul presidency can change that.

Mark Davis has written an article that explains this position much better than I can, so I will let his words do the talking:

The Ron Paul for President Campaign has been the cause of much discussion among anarchists as to whether we should all jump on the bandwagon. The exposure of ideas we all hold dear during his campaign pertaining to the elimination of state agencies and policies, especially central banks, has reached a larger audience than any other source to my knowledge. The education of a willfully ignorant if not brainwashed populace has grown by leaps and bounds. As I have previously written, I am glad that Ron Paul is running and I hope that he wins the election. Further, I think he is a genuine, honest man of principle and appreciate his efforts to educate people on the evils of the United States Imperial Federal Government. But in the end I can’t vote for him on principle.

The arguments used by the anarchists come minarchists (actually ministatists is more appropriate) to tempt the rest of us primarily include the relativist fallacy, appeals to fear and appeals to authority. The almost cult-like following that somehow has come to believe in the ability of a special man to turn decades of experience with obvious facts and sound logic on its head must raise an eyebrow or two among principled anarchists. I refuse to fall prey to exceptionalism, sacrifice my principles to fear or follow others who did. Still I can use the campaign as a useful tool to educate diehard mega-statists on the evils of the state and move ministatists toward a better understanding of self-government with a clear conscience. That is, I am not required to personally commit an immoral act in order to educate the masses.

Read the rest of Mark Davis' article

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