Statism and Pacifism are Antithetical Principles

By definition, this is fact:

Pacifism (ˈpæsɪˌfɪzəm)

1. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) the belief that violence of any kind is unjustifiable and that one should not participate in war (emphasis added)

Statism (ˈsteɪtɪzəm)

(Government, Politics & Diplomacy) the theory or practice of concentrating economic and political power in the state, resulting in a weak position for the individual or community with respect to the government (emphasis added)

The State – which is to abstractly say any government – produces nothing of its own, as it is not a naturally occurring/existing thing in the same vein as a human individual (or collection thereof) is.  Unlike individuals, the State possesses no resources of its own to invest into production/exchange.  It must be instituted by a given people (righteously or otherwise) and consequently must forcibly appropriate all resources it utilizes to facilitate any legal or extralegal pursuits.  Similarly, any law, executive order, regulation, resolution, decree, or any other act of said government must necessarily be supported by violence to have any meaning at all.

All states, inescapably and by their very nature, must use direct violence and/or the threat of direct violence to forcefully coerce its constituency to do, or not do, any single thing.  From taxation to behavioral modification, and concerning anything in between, this fact remains constant and unmoving.  Any cooperative, nonviolent production, exchange, or association can, will, and does come about through peaceful market mechanisms, if warranted by the given target market.  When people turn to government(s) to bring about a given function, they are, by definition, openly acknowledging that they do not wish to engage in a peaceful, nonaggressive approach to that function, even if they do not realize it.  They are relegating that function to violent manifestation by the State.

This reality is indisputable and must be properly dissected to meaningfully engage in any subsequent discussions relating to the State and what it does/should/should not do.  Whether or not the said function is a good idea, or otherwise an ethically violent pursuit, is a topic of discussion that first requires us to truly understand the inherent nature of the State and how it necessarily functions. 

But to the main point here, many people like to virtue signal by declaring that “violence is not/never the answer” to a given perceived problem(s).  Yet, these same people are overwhelmingly statist in their political disposition, which is to say they turn to the State to solve nearly all of their perceived problems (or at least, the issues that have no negative consequences for themselves at any rate).  But how can one unilaterally reject the use of violence to solve problems and at the same time turn to the State, whose only tool is violence, to solve their problems?  You should be seeing the inherent discrepancy here.

Consider avowed Socialist Senator Bernie Sanders’ (D-VT) Tweet below, in response to the recent politically-motivated mass shooting in Alexandria, Virginia:


How exactly can someone declare that “violence of any kind is unacceptable in our society,” while simultaneously pursuing policies that would necessitate the State to use violence to confiscate property from certain portions of society and transfer it to other portions of society, including to the State itself?  If I peacefully choose not to hand over my property in exchange for a given product/service, as is perfectly ethical, acceptable, and my right in a market environment made of free individuals, how is violence possibly justified to take it from me regardless, if one truly believes “violence of any kind is unacceptable in our society?”

People like Bernie Sanders – and there certainly is no shortage of them in our society – are either being disingenuous in their virtue signaling or are supremely ignorant regarding the realities of the world.

One can certainly decide for themselves if/when the use of violence is ever justified or ethical.   But, one cannot accurately claim to reject violence as an answer to perceived problems and simultaneously outsource that violence to the State to solve those perceived problems.  If you claim to be anti-war, for example, this principle should not stop at international borders.  One cannot consistently be against war on an international scale (i.e. waged against foreigners) while also supporting the State’s domestic warfare against its own people to confiscate property, control nonviolent behaviors and decisions, censor, support special interest and other economic cronyism, etc.  (It is not coincidence that the federal government likes to prosecute “wars” against various domestic “things” instead of “people” to simultaneously rationalize the violence while also passively propagandizing its impact on real people.  It is a “war on drugs” or a “war on poverty,” not a “war on Americans,” after all.)

People who turn to the State to aggressively pursue their ends with violence cannot be, by definition, pacifists.  Indeed, by their own actions they embrace violence as the answer to their perceived problems.  If you were simply confused and genuinely wish to reject violence as a solution to your problem(s), then principle necessitates that you reject turning to the State to address that problem(s) in kind.  You should instead work toward peaceful, voluntarily cooperative solutions in a market environment to address whatever these issues are.

If, however, you embrace violence as a solution to your problem(s), you should not be a coward and instead put some “skin in the game” by wielding that violence yourself rather than outsourcing it to agents of the State.


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