L. Neil Smith's
THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 76, June 12, 2000
Volunteers of America
When I last ventured into a grocery store, I was assailed by the cover of one of our cookie-cut "weekly newsmagazines" -- don't worry which, it'll soon be on all the others. It showed that lovable loser, Colin Powell, pointing his finger at me and saying "I want you."
You want me for what, motherfucker?
What's currently griping the piles of the man who couldn't unseat Saddam Hussein or get George Bush reelected is, of course, "volunteerism." Peep this: the government already takes at least half of all our incomes, and probably way more, in taxes, hidden taxes, and opportunity costs imposed by insanely arbitrary regulations. Now -- in the person of Bill Clinton and his near-twin Powell -- Moloch is telling us we ought to feel obligated to work for Him for free.
I won't bother dissecting the fascist absurdity of Clinton's "mandatory volunteerism" for high school students, nor the bigger lie "service" -- if you don't know what's wrong with that, please go clean your lawnmower with gasoline while enjoying an Al Gore-subsidized cigarette, thereby sparing your species further genetic drift.
I will point out what all this signifies: as Orlin Grabbe puts it, in a slightly different context, the dickheads are getting desperate. They know they're running out of money, but they gotta find some way to feed their uncontrollable power jones: as the commercial jingle has it, they want more, more, more. Overtly raising taxes would be a bad move now; but they're unwilling, possibly unable, to wait for their media blitzes against "selfishness" and "austerity" to convince the American public that it's wicked to want to keep some of the money it actually earns. But that's OK -- government has grown masterful in evading any restrictions that can possibly be placed on it -- which is why, for you slow learners out there, the only hope we have of "limiting" government is to abolish it: anything else is just playing along.
So what our rulers intend now is to sell us their latest oxymoron, "mandatory volunteerism." I'd say it's just a step from that to the ancient forced-labor corvee -- except that's a lie. It's no step at all.
Terror Bill and the Colon aren't content with you slaving for their profit and power four hours of every eight. No way. Once quittin' time rolls around, it's on with your OSHA-approved hard-hat and ankle chains and out into the hot sun for your "volunteer" work.
Still, like charity, no matter how much the government tries to co-opt, and thereby spoil, it, volunteerism has merit. Accordingly a few suggestions:
1) Buy guns. Learn to use them. Get together with a few trusted friends whom you know extremely well and learn to use them in concert. Read all that you can find on guerrilla warfare. Once again -- for you cringing cowards and sneering traitors who are afraid the government will put you on a "list" if TLE prints anything more controversial than Barney might say -- I say: the objective isn't overthrowing the US government by force. Indeed, if any group did so overthrow the government, we'd need to fight them, perhaps more urgently. No, the US government will likely overthrow itself with its monstrous greed and stupidity. We need to be armed and, in a limited way, organized to preserve ourselves and loved ones when a dying Leviathan starts flailing His tentacles.
I'm not suggesting you join a militia; you are in a militia, the militia, by reason of being an American. That's the way the country was set up, folks.
I also don't suggest you join some big paramilitary organization whose members call each other "Colonel," "Captain," or "Field Marshal for Life" and run around the woods wearing cammies and toting emasculated, semi-automatic versions of true assault rifles. For one thing, adopting the military's Leninist hierarchy is no way to promote individual liberty; it conduces only to making yourself into a government, which is what the overrated Montana Freemen really had in mind. For another, such organizations are what we technically term, "targets." They're already lousy with infiltrators -- like the provocateurs who set up the Vipers and framed the Georgia militia people, not to mention the ones who aided, at least by omission, the government-subsidized Aryan Republican Army in blowing up the OKC Federal building.
There's a point to such organizations: they serve as a standing rebuttal to the government's claims to control the population, and they righteously piss off the bad guys. But when things grow warm their main function will be to draw fire. Don't stand too close to them or you will burn.
2) Share the joy of shooting -- and, subtly, the values of self-responsibility implicit in the concept of self-defense -- with friends. Don't try to recruit them. Once they feel the -- yes, I'm afraid I'm going to use the word -- empowerment of being able to protect themselves, there's a good chance they'll finish the job of subverting themselves. All it takes is confronting the government's campaign to take that feeling -- and the means which induce it -- away.
3) Use encryption. It doesn't matter if NSA can bust PGP. The government can simply -- as the Brit government is trying to do -- outlaw use of encryption period, and bust you if you use it. But as PGP creator Phil Zimmermann points out, if a sizable percentage of the populace encrypts all their online correspondence, the government can't jail them all. It also can't red-flag encrypted coms for special supercomputer attention -- and not even No Such Agency can possibly decrypt a hundred million messages a day. Why do you think Crime Bill and his idiot Nazi sidekick Al Gore are so hysterical to ban useful encryption?
4) Most important: lay away supplies, particularly food and medicine, for hard times. Figure out ways you can shelter evaders from the "law" -- i.e., from the uniformed outlaws -- and discreetly let freedom-minded others know of your willingness to do so. We're talking "networking," here.
Buy and read Dean R. Koontz's thriller Dark Rivers Of The Heart. First, it's well worth it as an entertainment. Second, it describes just such a network, created to assist victims of government's increasingly brutal and arbitrary violence -- not just in escaping and hiding out from their tormentors, but eventually assuming new lives and occupations, under new identities. All this is possible -- and it's important that it become actual. There are already tens of thousands of victims of the government's alphabet-soup paramilitary forces out there. One thing is certain: there will be many, many more.
Beyond that, use your imagination. We're not talking altruism here -- we're talking intelligent beings working for their mutual benefit. The ass you save may be your own.
Let's show Slick and Colon the real Volunteers of America.
Up against the wall, motherfuckers!