The Inherent Criminality of All Governments, Everywhere
[This 1939 essay by AJ nock is as relevant today, if not more so, than when it was written. I can identify particularly well with his statement:"I am cordially with them on every point but one. I am with them in repugnance, horror, indignation, disgust, but not in astonishment."
Like Nock, I'm more amazed by the naivete and ignorance of those who ignore the historical record of governments worldwide, and continue to expect governments to do "good things" in areas such as "justice", the environment, the monetary system, "equality", taxation, invasion of other countries, or whatever else tickles the naive proletariat[s] fancy, regardless of whether they call themselves democrats, republicans, libertarians, or of any other nit-picking, meaningless, imaginary subclassification of the pro-state persuasion.
As Nock says:"what would you expect? – look at the record! "
THE BIG QUESTION [?] :
If you agree with Nock and myself, your question would be: "Given the inherent criminality of all governments, what can I as an individual do about it?" As a problem solver, that is where I might help, so contact me via this blog's comment facility if interested. ]
[Excerpt] : " As well as I can judge, the general attitude of Americans who are at all interested in foreign affairs is one of astonishment, coupled with distaste, displeasure, or horror, according to the individual observer's capacity for emotional excitement. Perhaps I ought to shade this statement a little in order to keep on the safe side, and say that this is the most generally expressed attitude.
All our institutional voices – the press, pulpit, forum – are pitched to the note of amazed indignation at one or another phase of the current goings-on in Europe and Asia. This leads me to believe that our people generally are viewing with wonder as well as repugnance certain conspicuous actions of various foreign States; for instance, the barbarous behavior of the German State towards some of its own citizens; the merciless despotism of the Soviet Russian State; the ruthless imperialism of the Italian State; the "betrayal of CzechoSlovakia" by the British and French States; the savagery of the Japanese State; the brutishness of the Chinese State's mercenaries; and so on, here or there, all over the globe – this sort of thing is showing itself to be against our people's grain, and they are speaking out about it in wrathful surprise.
I am cordially with them on every point but one. I am with them in repugnance, horror, indignation, disgust, but not in astonishment. The history of the State being what it is, and its testimony being as invariable and eloquent as it is, I am obliged to say that the naive tone of surprise wherewith our people complain of these matters strikes me as a pretty sad reflection on their intelligence. Suppose someone were impolite enough to ask them the gruff question, "Well, what do you expect?" – what rational answer could they give? I know of none.
Polite or impolite, that is just the question which ought to be put every time a story of State villainy appears in the news. It ought to be thrown at our public day after day, from every newspaper, periodical, lecture platform, and radio station in the land; and it ought to be backed up by a simple appeal to history, a simple invitation to look at the record. The British State has sold the Czech State down the river by a despicable trick; very well, be as disgusted and angry as you like, but don't be astonished; what would you expect? – just take a look at the British State's record! The German State is persecuting great masses of its people, the Russian State is holding a purge, the Italian State is grabbing territory, the Japanese State is buccaneering along the Asiatic Coast; horrible, yes, but for Heaven's sake don't lose your head over it, for what would you expect? – look at the record! ...."
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