Immoral for me, but not for them

From The Rejection of Liberty by Rick Flame:

If you, as an individual, were to imitate the actions of government, your actions would properly be taken as immoral. However, when government carries out these same actions, they are viewed as moral. If you were to carry out your own taxation, it would rightly be called theft. If you were to imitate the actions of a combat hero, you would be considered a murderer. If you were to attempt to circumvent the free market by enforcing your own regulations, it would correctly be considered enslavement.

If it is immoral for you, as an individual, to carry out these actions, then it is immoral for a group of people calling themselves a “government” to carry out these actions. In fact, it is immoral for individuals to ask the state to carry out these actions on their behalf.

Government coercion manifests itself through charred bodies, prison rape, and execution. But, the consequences of coercion are not only found on foreign battlefields or in remote prisons. They can be seen in the mom and pop store that is forced to shut down due to the cost of complying with onerous regulations and in the faces of the frustrated youth who have shunned education after being forced to attend boring, propagandistic schools. The complete register of immoral actions that come from the state grows everyday and is too voluminous to recount in entirety here. However, observant readers will notice these immoral actions around themselves everyday.

Institutionalizing violence through government masks the evil in an air of legitimacy, corrupting culture and encouraging private acts of violence. Through this mask of legitimacy, the meanings of words such as “freedom”, “justice”, and even “morality” are easily twisted and changed. For example, the prison and court systems are not concerned with the compensation of victims, but with vengeance and the exercise of power. Rather than repay their victims for items they have stolen, thieves languish in prison. Meanwhile, the injured parties are sent away with, at best, a thank you. This system is called “justice” and is funded by tax money taken under the threat of force.

Just a little liberty reading for your holiday weekend.

via Kent McManigal

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