L. Neil Smith's
THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 264, March 21, 2004
"Mind Your Own Damned Business"
How Do We Win The War On Terror?
Exclusive to TLE
Ladies and gentlemen, our government is spending billions of dollars, trampling on our constitutional rights, and generally thrashing around like a wounded sloth in it's efforts to fight terrorism. Just like the war on drugs, this is a totally unwinnable conflict, IF you conduct your campaign the way the government is now. On our present course, our government is not only alienating long term allies, but creating NEW enemies among those who look at the United States as an arrogant occupying power, determined to stamp out the religion of Islam and to rule the world.
What is a terrorist? A terrorist is a person who has a grudge, and has either a weapon, or means to MAKE a weapon. In addition, he must have some motivation beyond the grudge against authority. This may be religious, it may be the feeling that he really has nothing to lose, that he might as well give up his life, since he or she sees no practical way out of the morass his life has become. There is NO practical way to totally eradicate terrorism, since there will always be some form of inequality, and any one with even a modicum of knowledge can make some form of improvised weapon. This could be anything from a sharpened stick to a piece of wire and two small sticks to make a garotte, any one of the myriad ways to make home-made napalm or Molotov cocktails, or even a large enough supply of household chemicals that can be used or combined to make some form of make-shift chemical weapon. You'll forgive me, I hope, if I don't go into details?
All you do when you invade another person's country, or trample on the rights of law-abiding citizens, no matter the excuse or justification, is create new sources of enmity, give new causes for hatred, and create a whole new crop of potential terrorists.
The solution is simple, would cost the government not one single cent, and be far more effective than anything the government has come up with. Please note that I said SIMPLE, not easy!
That solution is to count on the people of America to protect themselves! Don't just allow, but ENCOURAGE people to be armed, to get training, even offer training from counter-terror specialists. People would pay for this, or if the CT specialists were military, they get paid no matter what. Heck, our Special Forces teams are trained to teach others how to fight terrorism. We're paying for them already, why don't they teach US? Either way, it wouldn't cost the government a penny that it isn't spending already, and far less than it is spending in the current war on terror! This would also have the side-effect of causing a tremendous drop in crime, making our streets, schools, and playgrounds much safer for our children, and ourselves.
The police, the military, other federal agencies, no matter how hard they try, can NOT be everywhere. The people of America ARE everywhere. In addition, this would provide an immense psychological benefit, in that people would again feel part of this country's government, instead of alienated from it. Another benefit would be that people would, in many cases, feel driven to become more self-sufficient, thereby placing less demand on government services and resources, which, theoretically at least, could lead to lower taxes and more freedom for individuals.
Obviously, there are many problems to be worked out with this, or any other solution to a problem such as this. Just as obviously, there is absolutely no way that the government will ever go along with an idea this simple. That would require two things that have proven to be sadly lacking in this or any government. The first is common sense and sanity. What is the old saying? If you keep doing the same thing that doesn't work, it's insane to expect different results? Something along that line. The other is the fact that this would require the government to give up a tremendous amount of control over the people of this country, control that they have invested decades and billions of dollars in justifying.
I can't help but suspect that there are some people in government, both politicians and bureaucrats, who are quietly chortling at how many of the American people are stampeding to give up their rights, bleating for protection from the wolves, as they run toward an even more dangerous set of wolves.
At this point, I want to encourage all of you to read two books. The first is Nation of Cowards, by Jeff Snyder. This book of essays on the ethics of gun control is fascinating reading, and I think you will enjoy it immensely. The other is The American Zone, by L. Neil Smith. He addresses this same issue in a highly entertaining novel, chock full of interesting characters and concepts. If you haven't read it already, I urge you to do so.
One final note, in this election season. If you don't vote, or vote for one of the two branches of the National Socialist Party, the Democraps or the Republican'ts, you are part of the problem. We can't be heard if we don't speak in a language the politicians listen to, and there are only two things politicians pay attention to: MONEY and VOTES! After all, they want to keep getting elected, so they can keep stealing! Vote your concience, vote freedom, vote Libertarian!
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