What is a cypherpunk?
bbrow07 at students.bbk.ac.uk
Mon Feb 14 05:18:19 PST 2005
James A. Donald wrote:
> The state was created to attack private property rights - to
> steal stuff. Some rich people are beneficiaries, but from the
> beginning, always at the expense of other rich people.
More commonly states defend the rich against the poor. They are
what underpins property rights, in the sense of "great property"
- until the industrial revolution that was mostly rights to land
other people farm or live on. Every society we know about has had
laws and customs defending personal property (more or less
successfully) but it takes political/military power to defend the
right to exact rent from a large estate, and state power to defend
that right for thousands or millions of landowners.
> Again, compare the burning of Shenendoah with the Saint
> Valentine's day massacre. There is just no comparison.
> Governmental crimes are stupendously larger, and much more
> difficult to defend against.
The apposite current comparison is 9/11 the most notorious piece
of private-enterprise violence in recent years, and the far more
destructive US revenge on Afghanistan and Iraq. Which was
hundreds of times more destructive but hundreds of thousands of
times more expensive, so far less cost-effective - but in a a war
of attrition that might not matter so much. Of course the
private-enterprise AQ & their friends the Taliban booted
themselves into a state, of sorts in Afghanistan, with a little
help from their friends in Pakistan and arguable amounts of US
weaponry. Not that Afghanistan was the sort of place from which
significant amounts of tax could be collected to fund further
States can get usually get control of far larger military
resources than private organisations, and have fewer qualms about
wasting them. Not that it makes much difference to the victims -
poor peasants kicked off land wanted for oilfields in West Africa
probably neither know nor care whether the troops who burned their
houses were paid by the oil companies or the local government.
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