Trusting Bureaucrats – Remembering 9-11

New York Twin TowersSix years after the twin towers came down (whoever might be behind this) it is time again to remember and reminisce. Six years have passed and I still do not understand what happened to the American people directly following this incident.

Let’s see, nobody in his right mind before this event would have put any trust in a bureaucrat. We all made fun of their efficiency and competence – I mean – give me a break – they are BUREAUCRATS. They did not manage to get a real job!

Then a perceived true crisis comes along and suddenly everybody is putting all the trust in those bureaucrats to handle that crisis. What happened there – did everybody – except me obviously – forget what we think of pencil pushers?

We give them power beyond the wildest dreams of the founding fathers. Not surprisingly they do not handle that very well.

I don’t get it – what happened here – we have a bunch of people we do not hold in very high esteem (to say it mildly), an apparently big problem comes along and we think that those individuals suddenly develop super-powers to handle that emergency…


My favorite anarchist – Larken Rose – has some interesting thoughts along those lines.

“There have to be rules!”

Okay, here they are:

Rule #1: People with red hair get to take whatever they want from anyone who doesn’t have red hair.

Rule #2: No one is allowed to listen to music which doesn’t have at least three instruments and more than four chords in it.

Rule #3: People who wear falling-down pants will be shot on sight.

Rule #4: No one is allowed to say anything bad about me.

There, now we have rules, so we can all feel safe now and live in peace.

What’s the matter, you don’t like my rules? Oh, so you didn’t just mean you wanted any old rules; you mean you want CERTAIN rules. Maybe something along the lines of “Don’t go around robbing or murdering people.” (I kind of like that one myself.)

But wait a second. Who are YOU to say that my rules aren’t good enough? I’m the (self-appointed) rule-maker around here; who are YOU to decide that my rules are stupid? You think YOU can decide for yourself which rules you have to follow?! What are you, some sort of ANARCHIST?!?!

Of course, you (and all people on earth) DO have not only the right, but the moral obligation to decide which “rules” you should and shouldn’t obey. (Or, as the radical extremist Thomas Jefferson put it, “If a law is unjust, a man is not only right to disobey it, he is OBLIGATED to do so.”) We don’t look kindly on the people who just followed the rules of people like Stalin, Mao and Hitler, do we? No, we insist that as human beings, it was their obligation to DISOBEY the rules, when the rules went contrary to humanity and justice.

“The only obligation which I have a right to assume, is to do at any time what I think right.” [Henry David Thoreau]

But how does that fit the idea that “There have to be rules!”? The statement obviously implies a centralized rule-maker, to which we all must be subservient, in order to avoid the supposed chaos and mayhem which would otherwise ensue. But if each of us has not only the right, but the DUTY, to judge right and wrong for himself, and to do what we believe to be right, what’s the point of having someone else making up “rules”?

And WHO should make these “rules”? If we’re so scared that, without a centralized rule-maker, our neighbors would be assaulting, robbing, and murdering us, why do we think that those same neighbors–actually, the WORST among them–should be put into positions of power where they can make up “rules,” and impose them on the rest of us by force? If people are evil, why on earth would you expect them to make good “rules”? And since it’s pretty darn obvious that politicians are MORE malicious, devious, corrupt, and evil than the general public, how silly is it to insist that society depends upon THEM making up and imposing rules on the rest of us? “There will be chaos unless the biggest crook in town tells us all what to do!” Yeah, that makes loads of sense.

Frankly, it’s a self-contradictory, insane “solution” that EVERY statist–everyone who believes in “government,” however limited– MUST believe in: that as mere mortal individuals, human beings will be selfish, violent and vicious, but when put into positions of great power, will suddenly be benign, wise, and just.

“If the natural tendencies of mankind are so bad that it is not safe to permit people to be free, how is it that the tendencies of these organizers are always good? Do not the legislators and their appointed agents also belong to the human race?” [Frederic Bastiat]

“If man is not fit to govern himself, how can he be fit to govern someone else?” [James Madison]

What makes such a notion even more looney is how obviously and constantly history shows the exact opposite: people who are imagined to have the right to rule (i.e., those in “government”) commit assault, robbery, and murder on a scale far beyond what “private” crooks and thugs every have, or ever could. (And, incidentally, they usually commit their atrocities “by the rules”– rules which they made up.)

“But we neeeeeeeeeeeed rules!” People who say that desperately want an absolutely impossible magic trick: for an imperfect, often careless, sometimes malicious human race to create a perfect, compassionate, benign system of controlling everyone. They want something ABOVE all of us imperfect humans, to keep us in line. But what is that “something” made up of? Aliens? A giant pink armadillo? The tooth fairy? No, it’s made up of a bunch of imperfect humans–in fact, about the LEAST perfect humans around.

The truth, though it should be painfully obvious to anyone who opens his mind and thinks about it for two seconds, scares the heck out of most people: on this planet, imperfect people is all we have. And since you’re a person, NOTHING (on this planet, at least) is above you–no “authority,” no “rule,” no Constitution, no legislation, NOTHING. You don’t know everything, and your judgment won’t ever be perfect, but it’s ALL YOU HAVE to distinguish right from wrong. It is both insane and horribly destructive to try to surrender your own, personal judgment, in favor of obedience to some “authority.”

“But someone has to be in charge!”

Yes, and it’s you. You’re in charge. It’s up to YOU to decide what is right, and to decide what to do about it. No one is above you. Attempting to surrender your own moral judgment over to some “authority” is not only the ultimate act of cowardice, it is a sign of insanity–it is an attempt to rid yourself of that which makes you human: your free will. It is an attempt to shirk your responsibility to think, to judge, and to act; it is an attempt to reduce yourself to an unthinking slave, a mere tool of someone else (usually someone really nasty).

Sadly, people by the billions do it–choosing obedience over thought–and they do it with pride. And then they wonder why the outcome is so horrible. Yes, there are “rules” humans should live by, and most of the time they are in direct conflict with the “rules” which come from politicians and other pretended “authorities.” If you shirk your personal duty to discover and judge for YOURSELF what the true, legitimate “rules” are, then you are a coward of the highest order, and a traitor to humanity.

Have a nice day.

Larken Rose