You don’t want to be trapped
between the force of nature and the
doubling down of human stupidity.
Mordor on the Potomac
by Jim Davidson
Special to L. Neil Smith’s The Libertarian Enterprise
“Governors and their staffs went out poor
and came home rich. Tax-farmers made handsome profits.
Usurers lent money at exorbitant rates of interest to provincials who
could only meet the tax-gatherers’ demands by borrowing. Rome,
in short, was living on the proceeds of her extortions. From an
economic point of view she was a parasitic city giving little or nothing
in exchange for what she took. In Rome herself no industries
existed except for local use. She consumed without producing; and
the only reason why she did not completely exhaust the resources
of her provinces was that the money she had wrung from them by her
extortions went back to them in payment for the luxuries they supplied
to her and so became available once more for a renewed extortion.
—Cyril E. Robinson,
A History of Rome from 753 BC to AD 410,
Second Edition, 1941
The above quote may well remind you of the extortions of the British empire or those of the American empire. The particular passage quoted actually refers to the Roman republic, roughly 150 BC. Given the extent of the power of the hereditary oligarchy that ran their senate, the term “republic” was, by that time, somewhat inaccurate. About a century later, the form of the republic would be “swept away” by Julius Caesar and his successors. My purpose here is not to dwell on ancient history.
Instead, I invite you to consider Washington, District of Columbia. The district has a rather odd shape, given that it was originally to be a square ten miles on a side. The Virginia portion went away in the War Between the States and never came back. But it is, like ancient Rome, a parasitic city. It produces metric tonnes of paper, and gigabytes of regulatory idiocy. It produces tax farmers and corporate welfare whores. It has spawned an entire “ health care coding” profession to match disorders and diagnoses with codes that provide for ersatz payment. It does not, however, produce anything of value.
For the last century, it has gotten worse and worse. It now controls an annual budget of trillions of dollars, plus a “black operations” budget that, despite the clear admonition in Article One, Section 9 of the constitution, is never published. No monies shall be spent from the public treasury without a regular statement of accounting of them. Gosh, how odd that the constitution is powerless to prevent an abuse of power.
Trillions of dollars flow to Mordor on the Potomac from all corners of America and from all quadrants of the Earth. Few countries are not extorted in some way to cooperate with the mass murdering American government. Those which object, such as the Afghan regime of the Taliban, the Iraqi regime of Saddam Hussein, the Libyan regime of Moammar Qadaffi, are eliminated by the military conquest of these places. USA military aircraft, including drones, are currently involved in slaughter of civilian targets in Somalia, Yemen, Afghanista, Iraq, Syria, and other places. Opposing Mordor is costly and deadly.
Imperial orcs do go forth at the orders of those in power in Mordor on the Potomac. They go out to communities around America to harass men and women, brutalise their families, murder some of them, barbecue a few dozen Texans in a church (1993), assassinate a woman holding her baby in Idaho, shoot surrendering men and women to death. The scum who do these jobs are evil filth and work for agencies like the FBI, ATF, DEA, IRS, and CIA, and they do not have ethics. They only have an eagerness to rape, murder, and pillage. They have few of them read the constitution which purports to limit their action, and none of them care about it. Were it up to any of them, they would use it for toilet paper.
Nor are their international colleagues in the military, diplomatic secret service, and espionage agencies any better. These men and women are evil and disgusting, trained to slaughter without qualm, to obliterate lives without mercy. They do terrible things because they were trained to do them, encouraged to do them, and, let’s be candid, because they got to like doing them. These are not mindless brutes, but clever and frequently psychopathic killers who understand what they are doing, do it thoughtfully and with care, and enjoy spilling blood.
Your Lack of Power
Many Americans acknowledge that their government is out of hand, and some think they can take action to correct these excesses. In fact, their government is operating as designed, exactly as Washington and Hamilton envisioned. The national government of the USA has made a plantation of the entire world and enslaved nearly everyone on Earth. The government uses propaganda and terror incidents, many of them false flag actions perpetrated to panic the populace, in order to keep power. Villains like John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and Paul Ryan keep being re-elected not because they win votes, but because the machine political system manufactures votes to keep them in place. The dirty dealers in the FBI and CIA know all the secrets of these politicians and are happy to expose them, but do not as long as they get what they want: money and power.
Some Americans persist in the illusion that they can vote themselves freedom. I am indifferent to this idea, because I see no reason to expect voting to change much. Emma Goldman once said that if voting were going to change things, those in power would make it illegal. I think she’s right. As well, I don’t think most county governments that have substantial populations are actually interested in counting votes. The Hursti Hack and other evidence strongly suggests that the electronic voting machines are committing fraud. Since these facts have come to my attention, I’ve become indifferent to Americans voting, because I don’t think it hurts anything, nor helps very much.
Voting is probably helping in the two areas that John Mackey used to complain libertarians should stop talking about: guns and drugs. Marijuana legalisation and constitutional carry have become widespread in places where referendum and initiative are available, as well as in a few states where it is not. So it is arguable that voting has helped on these two issues.
Nevertheless, every two years, elections put the same villains in congress, even though only about 10% of Americans approve of congress. Incumbents have massive powers to retain their seats, and it doesn’t really matter if you vote or campaign against them. There have been national elections every two years since 1789 and Americans are less and less free in many ways after each election.
There were some changes over the years. In 1913, the Federal Reserve act, the income tax, and the racist Woodrow Wilson changed many aspects of the economy. Wilson enthusiastically brought in Prohibition and the treaties relating to narcotics trafficking arrived soon after. Wilson created the Black Chamber to spy on all Americans by opening their mail, reading their telegrams, and monitoring their phone calls. He brought the country into World War One to serve his European imperial masters. He rejected Ho Chi Minh’s overtures at Versailles, condemning Americans to ten years of open warfare (and another ten of clandestine warfare before) from 1964 to 1974 in Vietnam. Wilson also pushed through the Enemy Aliens act, imposed sedition laws, and created the Federal Bureau of Investigation to thwart freedom everywhere.
There were also numerous changes under Nixon, who created OSHA and the EPA to provide power to baby boomers who were happy to drop their revolutionary pretensions for steady pay and opportunities to hurt others. Nixon destroyed the passenger rail companies, putting the mail on the interstate highways and encouraging those long double and triple-bottom trucks to swerve in moderate to high winds. Nixon bombed Cambodia and other parts of Southeast Asia to slaughter millions of civilians because he and his buddy Kissinger enjoyed having blood on their hands. He also fully destroyed the connection of American currency to gold, heralding the increasing disparity between wealthy and middle class. His successors have effectively wiped out the middle class in America.
Calls to Action
What are you going to do about it? Well, for my part, I see three useful strategies. I am going to work on all three for as long as I’m able.
First, I believe it is possible to establish communities where free people can be free. I’ve identified a number of these around the world in Burma, Belize, Argentina, Chile, French Polynesia, and I’ve recruited a board of advisers representing many of those places. I’ve also located land in Ohio, Kansas, Texas, Wyoming, and other places suited to free communities. There is an opportunity to build an online network of communities and there is an opportunity to build physical communities in various places. I’ve put most of those ideas on the ResilientWays.net web site.
Second, I believe it is possible to establish legitimate currencies that effectively compete against national fiat money. FA Hayek and EC Riegel both thought so, too. You might want to read Hayek’s Denationalisation of Money and Riegel’s A New Approach to Freedom to learn more. Bitcoin and about 1200 variations on the theme have created a surge of interest in this area. They now represent about $5 trillion a year in annual transactions, making the crypto-currency economy bigger than all but the three largest national economies in the world. There is a lot more work to be done in this area, especially as regards privacy. However, I think your financial autonomy is going to be increasingly secure, because thousands of computer experts (hackers) have decided to make that possible.
Third, I think there are some fun poitical projects that can be useful to bring a sense of what is possible to more people. Ron Paul did a really great job in 2008 and 2012 creating a “Campaign for Liberty.” I think Adam Kokesh is about to do the same thing with his 2020 campaign to become president in order to shut down the national government. I’m planning to help raise awareness of his work. You might get some messages from me on the topic if it interests you.
There’s more than enough work to do to free the slaves, stop the wars, and end the state to fill several life times. I hope you’ll join me, and get busy doing some of it.
Jim Davidson is an entrepreneur, story teller, public speaker, activist, and world traveller. He is available to speak at events and to advise on business development. He writes business plans. He also teaches English, mathematics, science, history, and economics to various students. His information security consulting business is doing well. Find him at ResilientWays.net and elsewhere.
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