Sunday, May 3, 2009

First, get off your knees: The Motionless Movement

from Thomas Paine's Corner


by Larken Rose

First, the good news: The pro-freedom “movement” is seeing a dramatic growth spurt. All sorts of people, from all walks of life, are coming to realize that our “protector” government is the main thing that we need to be protected from. In fact, by all appearances, the movement is growing by leaps and bounds, especially among the younger generations. However …

What I see in the movement, including what I saw at Saturday’s “End the Fed” event, leaves me with mixed emotions. In my brief comments there, I didn’t want to be too blatant, lest I offend both the organizers and the spectators of the event, but the truth is, most of what the “movement” is focusing on is pointless and doomed to fail. The problem is this: Most people have been trained to view obedience as a virtue and have been taught to take pride in the fact that they are “law-abiding taxpayers” who “play by the rules.” And this is just as true of most of the people in the “movement.” As a direct result, they are focusing all of their energies on electing this or that candidate, or on lobbying for or against this or that legislation. In short, they continue to focus on asking tyrants to please give us permission to be free. And the message that that sends to those in government, more than whatever the people are actually “demanding,” is this: “We agree that we cannot be free without your blessing!”

Throughout most of the world, throughout most of history, saying what you think has been “illegal”; having the means to defend yourself has been “illegal”; in fact, anything other than unquestioning obedience to authority has been “illegal.” The vast majority of oppression and tyranny in history was done “legally.” But what does that even mean? All it means is that, before stomping on the peasants, the tyrants would formally proclaim, “We have the right to do this to you.” Likewise, resisting tyrannical governments has always been “illegal.” In fact, how could it not be? What tyrant would be so stupid as to say, “It’s okay, you’re allowed to disobey me”? But as obvious as that is, most people are still so indoctrinated into the notion that obedience to authority is a moral imperative, that even most of those who claim to be freedom-fighters frequently end their “demands” with “as long as it’s not illegal.” In other words, they will do all manner of noble fighting for justice, as long as they have the tyrants’ permission to do so. Well, duh. What good has that ever accomplished?

Quite a few people have, in the past few years, complained that I have “gone too far” with the whole “anarchy thing.” You see, they want a solution “within the system,” a way to change “the law” to restore our freedoms. They fail to notice the obvious logical contradiction: If you need the permission of “law” to be free, then by definition, you’re not free. It’s classic slave mentality: If you’re waiting around for your master to tell you that you’re allowed to be free (and how likely is that to happen?) then you are accepting your enslavement as just and legitimate. As such, you don’t really believe in freedom; you just want a nicer master.

I can’t decide if it’s encouraging or depressing to watch a room full of people “demanding” that their masters pass a “law” to let the people be free. And, whether out of fear or retaliation, or out of existential fear of not being good, obedient subjects, those people constantly throw in the qualifiers, “not violently, of course,” or “not by doing anything illegal, of course.” Why not? Obtaining freedom from tyranny is always “illegal” and almost always requires either violence or the threat of violence. All so-called “law,” including the heinously oppressive kind, is backed by the threat of violence. Not surprisingly, just about the only time such “legal” injustice is defeated is when its intended victims use defensive force to stop it.

The truth is, most people who say they are pro-freedom are still nowhere near shaking themselves of the slave mindset. They still view “breaking the law” as the most unthinkable sin, even when they acknowledge that the law is oppressive. Need proof? Suppose there were a rash of armed carjackings in some town, and the townsfolk got together to decide what to do about it. How many speeches would end with this? “so we must put an end to this crime … without violence, of course.” I’m guessing no one would say that. Why not? Because they would view the carjackings as entirely evil, and would view the forcible resistance of them as inherently justified. So why don’t they say the same about “government” thefts, frauds, and oppressions?

Because the truth is, as much as they don’t like getting whipped by the master, deep down they still believe that the master has the right to whip them. Why else would they waste time continually asking the master to stop? Why else would they qualify all their “demands” for their master’s kindness with something along the lines of, “but of course I won’t disobey you or lift a hand against you”?

Source: Thomas Paine's Corner

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