Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Wasted Time and Energy on Politics (B.R. Merrick)

B.R. Merrick argues that it's time to stop trying to make government "better":

Thus, the lesson: when you choose to be a critical part of a system that has become this corrupt . . . you will not ameliorate or "save" it. The system will necessarily and inevitably corrupt you.Arthur Silber

I understand the arguments for getting involved politically. They are multitudinous. Some of them are almost entirely persuasive. (Think Ron Paul.) Some of them are downright frightening. (Think about the threat of communism.) Some of them I actually contribute money to. Not because I think they’ll get anywhere with actually changing the system, but because I hope that they might be able to use the funds to get more publicity, and perhaps get the government’s “private” media outlets to respond a little. Ron Paul did that. That’s good. Not great, but good. It was better than nothing. But in the end, belief in minarchism is nothing more than belief in the containable and non-threatening nature of a tiger cub. Small government conservatives and libertarians want a tiger cub. Well, who doesn’t? They’re cute. I would love to play with a tiger cub.

What minarchists don’t understand is that tiger cubs grow big, and grown tigers are never tame. You can’t domesticate a tiger like a house cat. You can always play with a grown house cat. For the five percent of the day that it’s awake. You cannot play with a tiger cub when it grows up. Tigers are wild and always will be. Government, because it is predicated on force and violence, will always be what it is: forceful and violent. Its fangs ain’t cute anymore.

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