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Moral Framework and the Zero Aggression Principle

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“A libertarian is a person who believes that no one has the right, under any circumstances, to initiate force against another human being for any reason whatever; nor will a libertarian advocate the initiation of force, or delegate it to anyone else. Those who act consistently with this principle are libertarians, whether they realize it or not. Those who fail to act consistently with it are not libertarians, regardless of what they may claim.”

~ L. Neil Smith, 1996

conflict resolution

In order to form lasting communities where people live free, we believe there is an important moral component to our work. That morality is derived from our view that men and women are, and of right ought to be, free and independent. We oppose slavery in all its forms.

Over the very long term, we have goals that involve the human exploration and settlement of the space frontier, as well as other frontiers. If you imagine building a metaphorical staircase to the heavens, you can see the vital importance of building upon a solid foundation.

We believe that no individual has the right to initiate force against any other person, for any reason, nor to delegate that power to anyone else. Accordingly, we do not believe in a “night watchman” state, nor in any other form of state. Any organisation seeking to subjugate others, tax them, and impose rules through coercion will grow without bound no matter what paper promises are issued to the public. Power corrupts and power attracts the corruptible. Therefore, we believe in unanimous consent, so that everyone living in one of our communities agrees to all of the basic ground-rules of that community.

An excellent “covenant of unanimous consent” was written in the 1990s by L. Neil Smith and published at various locations. We invite you to visit Neil’s site to see it in its full text.

Given that we call ourselves anarchists and El Neil is a voting libertarian, are there any contradictions in our using his quote at the top of this document, or referencing his agreement? We don’t think so. In particular, the term “libertarian” is an adjective describing a philosophy: my philosophy is libertarian. Its antonym is “authoritarian,” as in: Hitler’s philosophy was authoritarian, so was Stalin’s. Certainly our philosophy is pro-freedom and anti-authoritarian. We are also pro market and anti-war.

We don’t vote, but we don’t make a big issue of it with those who do simply because: we doubt their votes are counted, either. Voting, to the extent that it makes any difference, may make the voter feel good, and probably does no measurable harm. There is a tacit agreement by the voter that the voter agrees to the outcome of the election, but there is also an implicit agreement by those who count the votes that they will actually count all the votes actually cast by voters, and not allow extra votes to be cast by anyone. In fact, many voters seem to spend much of their time after each election complaining about the results, and the evidence of vote fraud in elections is extensive and compelling.

Elsewhere in this document we discuss the importance of the county sheriff and other county officials in the political process, law enforcement processes, and tax assessment and collection. We are open to a discussion of how best to influence these people, presumably by meeting them and informing them of what we plan, what we do, and why we think they should leave us alone. As to voting or campaigning for any politician, even for sheriff, we are not convinced, and may be expected to remain extremely sceptical of these ideas.

Among the reasonable guidelines that we’ve encountered are:

  • Do unto others as you would prefer they do unto you.
  • Love your neighbour as you love yourself.
  • Many people have quirks, and would just as soon be left alone to live as they see fit.

Feel free to suggest other guidelines, and to live by these as you think best.

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