let it all collapse, the icon for the www.punkerslut.com website
Home Articles Critiques Books Video
About Graphics CopyLeft Links Music

Resistance to Authority,
the Only Defense of Liberty

Creating Real Freedom
Means Fighting Its Enemy

By Punkerslut

From RadicalGraphics.org
Image: From "Cops" Gallery,
From RadicalGraphics.org

Start Date: February 6, 2010
Finish Date: February 6, 2010

"Oh Liberty, float not forever in the far horizon -- remain not forever in the dream of the enthusiast, the philanthropist and poet, but come and make thy home among the children of men!"
          --Robert Green Ingersoll, 1877
          "The Liberty of Man, Woman, and Child"

     Our rights to speak and to think as we want, to act and behave according to our own impulses, all of these rights are necessary to the definition of liberty. Freedom is about all of our rights to criticize society, accept or reject a religion, talk with who we want to, and to be the choosers of our own action. Everyone seeks what they think will make them most happy. And, through liberty, they are allowed that chance or opportunity. This is the true meaning of freedom: that people can achieve their personal happiness hurts no one and is restricted by no law.

     For all the greatness of this liberty -- for all that we value our peace of mind in choosing our own conscience and action -- little discussion is made on how to keep or preserve our liberty. The call to patriotism is always made. "Defend your freedom and liberty!" Schools, government agencies, and the media will all use your love of country to get you to fight or support a war. These representative governments are ready call on your love of freedom when they want to get you to do something for them. Buy war bonds, enlist in the army, support this political candidate or that political candidate, the list goes on.

     But very rarely do they every approach you with the question, "how do we preserve liberty?" when they have no campaigning motive. They won't ask you to investigate laws, personal security, liberty of the individual, or freedom of conscience normally. They'll just ask you to rise up and defend them, to become their soldiers in one cause against another. Through barracks and recruiting offices, your government tries to dominate the idea of 'liberty.' They try to make themselves appear as its own true defenders. And in reality, they are its greatest enemies.

"Were a nation, therefore, given to be moulded by a sovereign, as the clay is put into the hands of the potter, this project of bestowing liberty on a people who are actually servile, is, perhaps, of all others, the most difficult, and requires most to be executed in silence, and with the deepest reserve. Men are qualified to receive this blessing, only in proportion as they are made to apprehend their own rights; and are made to respect the just pretensions of mankind; in proportion as they are willing to sustain, in their own persons, the burden of government, and of national defence; and are willing to prefer the engagements of a liberal mind, to the enjoyments of sloth, or the delusive hopes of a safety purchased by submission and fear."
          --Adam Ferguson, 1767
          "An Essay on the History of Civil Society," Part 6, Section V

     For what can liberty really mean, besides being outside the control of some external force? It can mean nothing outside of that concept. Liberty does not try to protect itself from the natural laws of physics, whether it is gravity or evolution. It does not defend humanity from restrictions of climate, technology, or culture. Liberty has today, and always before, meant freedom from a violent force organized through a group of people. Freedom is not defined on how nature or our skill limit us; it is defined by how governments are willing to let us do as we decide.

     In defending our right to self-control, we can only be defending ourselves against one source: authority. What is it that could restrict us, besides the law of some master? What is it that could possibly want to put us in chains, and dominate us, other than ambitious senators and skillful kings? The winds do not destroy crops and agriculture out of intent, nor do plants and trees rot out of desire. They are working according to specific rules. But the rule of government is the rule of an person's ego and use of force. It is the use of threats to put people into artificial barriers and constraints. Except they are known as "taxes," "imprisonment," "profit," "exploitation," and "slavery."

From RadicalGraphics.org
Image: From "Prison" Gallery,
From RadicalGraphics.org

     The individual understands themselves and what they need to live. Rule by authority undermines this principle. It tries to teach us that people can only know how to live if they're taught by arrogant people who give themselves a ridiculous title. Anywhere the individual strains and struggles -- anywhere the fire of discontent burns -- it is always born in the form of resistance. It becomes insurrection and revolution.

     In a state of nature, or in perfect cooperation with each other, humanity is not a tyrant to itself. But this is not the case with states and governments. Anywhere that people struggle for liberty and freedom, it must necessarily be a struggle against the state. It is the barrier of laws, orders, and commands that keep people locked up in cages bound by cops and prisons. And in struggling for freedom, it must be by pushing against the boundaries set by an authority. The fight for liberty must be a fight against those who attempt to limit liberty. It must be a fight against tyrants. There are no others that could possibly attempt to threaten human liberty.

"Anarchism is the abolition of exploitation and oppression of man by man, that is, the abolition of private property and government; Anarchism is the destruction of misery, of superstitions, of hatred. Therefore, every blow given to the institutions of private property and to the government, every exaltation of the conscience of man, every disruption of the present conditions, every lie unmasked, every part of human activity taken away from the control of the authorities, every augmentation of the spirit of solidarity and initiative, is a step towards Anarchism."
          --Errico Malatesta
          "Towards Anarchism"

     The only real defense of liberty is resistance to authority. Whether it is resistance to an economic authority, like a boss or supervisor, or a political authority, like a congressman or president -- resistance to authority is the only way to protect your rights from this social power.

     Self-government is the only requirement for an individual to find happiness. And for this idea to be a reality, we must have liberty, and we must be willing to protect this liberty. We must be organized and prepared, ready to offer resistance to those who would take away our liberties.

     For each of us to really fight against those who would take our rights away, we must be fighting against authority, and against all authority. For there are none who could possibly have either the interest or the power to take away our rights but an authority. In fighting these established governments and states, whether they are parliaments or businesses, we are securing the peace of our personal freedom. There can be no real liberty among the people, unless we are prepared to defend it against an authority that would threaten it. To have a real liberty, then, there must be a real resistance among the people.

"Freedom naturally begets public spirit, especially in small states; and this public spirit, this amor patriae, must encrease, when the public is almost in continual alarm, and men are obliged, every moment, to expose themselves to the greatest dangers for its defence."
          --David Hume
          "Of Commerce"


join the punkerslut.com
mailing list!

copyleft notice and
responsibility disclaimer