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Ed Versus the State PDF Print E-mail
Commentary/Politics - Guest Commentaries
Wednesday, 06 February 2008 02:07

Ed was just minding his own business. According to an article in the News & Advance of Lynchburg, Virginia, Ed wasn't harming anyone, or threatening to harm anyone, or defrauding anyone.

But that didn't stop the state of Virginia from charging Ed with misdemeanors and felonies and booking him into the crowbar motel sans bail.

What Ed is guilty of is failure to abide by some rules that the rules-makers made.

Ed carried a gun into a school - a felony in today's gun-freaked USSA but merely a rules violation in a free society where government is forbidden to involve itself in education (i.e., indoctrination) and therefore every school is private and perfectly capable of writing its own rules, pro or con, concerning pistol-packing.

Ed removed the Vehicle Identification Number from his car's dashboard - a felony in a society where politicians and bureaucrats are kings but a non-issue in a culture where property rights are king.

Ed drove without government permission slips: no driver's license, license plate, or state inspection sticker - rules-breaking all.

Ed, whom the state says is Edward Royal Martin Jr., says he has no last name. In a civilized world Ed can call himself anything he damn well pleases. Or nothing.

Yes, there will be chaos without rules. But who makes the rules, who decides which rules to make, and who forces those rules on everyone else?

In a democracy, the "majority" makes the rules. But does that mean the rules are right just because 51 percent of people who bothered to vote voted for a professional office-runner who then joined with other office-runners to write down rules to be enforced by people with badges and guns and robes and gavels?

(And don't forget that under the American system some politicians enter office with less than 51 percent of the vote of the significantly less than 51 percent of the people who bother to vote.)

At one time or another in America, rules-makers said it was okay for white people to enslave black people, okay for some men, but never women, to vote, and generally okay to gun down Indians and Mexicans on sight.

It was okay to use alcohol and any drug whatsoever, then not okay to use alcohol, then okay to use alcohol but not some politically incorrect drugs.

Government strongly exhorted farmers to grown hemp during World War II, then began arresting and prosecuting people for growing hemp or just sending in SWAT teams to gun them down in their own bedrooms for possessing certain hemp products.

So there will be chaos without rules? As noted above, government rules-makers create the greatest chaos themselves.

War, the ultimate chaos, is an obsessive government pastime.

Libertarians know that the rules ought to be simple. Crimes happen when one person violates the rights of another person. Specifically, when one person violates another person. This can only happen when one person initiates force or the threat of force or fraud against another person.

Then and only then is a crime a crime.

All other activities routinely called crimes by the ruling elites and bluenose busybodies are merely rules-breaking.

Libertarians call incidents of rules-breaking "victimless crimes."

And please don't play games with the word "victimless." There are moral victims and emotional victims and psychological victims and "victims of social injustice" and professional cultural victims who cry "victim" whenever they don't get what they want at someone else's expense, but when libertarians say "victimless crimes" they are talking specifically about the legal theory, to wit: without coercion, intimidation, or fraud, there is no crime.

There is only rules-breaking.

Ed did not commit a single crime. He is guilty only of breaking politically manufactured rules.

With these kinds of ruling elites running the American Empire today, is it any surprise that far fewer than 51 percent of eligible voters ever bother to vote?


More of Garry Reed's writing can be found at (

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