You! Yes, you with the Murray Rothbard badge. You’re under arrest.

August 2, 2011 12 Comments
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Via the ASI

Via the Adam Smith Institute, the latest target of the British police:

I’m not quite an anarchist – although some of my best friends are, and the works of people like David Friedman (PDF) and Georgetown legal philosopher John Hasnas (PDF) make me unsure. But saying that “anarchists should be reported to your local Police” is a pretty extraordinary command that should worry everybody. Disliking the state is now enough for your neighbours to report on you, and for plod to take notice.

Per the comments over at the ASI they probably are just referring to those who are mostly pretend anarchists, who are really just socialists, Marxists and other collectivists with perhaps the odd Bakunin type here and there, and who attempt advance liberty by smashing up other people’s property. Even so, they’ve defined anarchist well, and it’s the definition that would cover anarcho-capitalists as well as anarcho-collectivists, and possibly minarchist libertarians as well. Alarmist? Possibly, but does anyone really think inconceivable that a conversation along these lines might occur?

“Well, you see, officer, that Exile bloke I told you about keeps saying how the State is nothing but bad news and even the handful of bits worth keeping are more a necessary evil than anything else. Yes, I do know where you can find him on a Tuesday afternoon.”

This is thought-crime, no more and no less, and the worst part of it is it isn’t a first. It’s just the latest opinion that might just get you watched and spied upon, investigated, arrested, charged and even convicted. Welcome to modern Britain, the world’s first nation sized Orwell Theme Park.

‘Kinell!

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12 Responses to You! Yes, you with the Murray Rothbard badge. You’re under arrest.

  1. Robert Edwards
    August 2, 2011 at 11:37 am

    I saw that over at the ASI and, although I didn’t post about it, the thought occured q. quickly that the average plod wouldn’t know:

    a) A workable definition of anarchism,
    b) A workable definition of nihilism,
    c) The historic differences between the two…

    -And then we have subdivisions like anarcho-communist. I fear it would all be a bit beyond PC49…

    Although unthinkable as a policy, it is at least interesting that, in historical terms, this marks an initiative against the left – for the first time in a long time…

    • Jeremy Poynton
      August 2, 2011 at 12:26 pm

      Not to mention the Anarcho-Syndicalists. Sorry. I mentioned them

    • Lord T
      August 2, 2011 at 1:12 pm

      It is well within their skill set. If in doubt arrest. If they resist add that to the charges and take them down the nick.

      If the charges are dropped maybe you can get them for resisting arrest or scratching his balls.

      Well within Plods skill set.

    • August 2, 2011 at 1:41 pm

      Agreed. Like the ASI writer I’m not quite an anarchist either. At heart perhaps I am because as an ideal it’s very attractive, but in the real world I think there are some big fundamental problems (almost as big as my problems in getting round to blogging about them) so I’m firmly in the minarchist camp. But as you say, would the 21st Century version of Constable Savage understand the difference or would he see me as being in the same category as some student with a scarf over his face chucking street furniture through the windows of a Barclays?

  2. August 2, 2011 at 11:45 am

    “Well, you see, officer, that Exile bloke I told you about keeps saying how the State is nothing but bad news and even the handful of bits worth keeping are more a necessary evil than anything else. Yes, I do know where you can find him on a Tuesday afternoon.”

    Have you been listening to my phone calls?

    • August 2, 2011 at 1:00 pm

      No, but someone probably has. ;-)

      Edit: I should add that Tuesday afternoon came and went, but nobody came and I didn’t go anywhere.

  3. David
    August 2, 2011 at 1:42 pm

    Surely this would mean all fundamentalist muslims would be rounded up then? Bring it on.

    • August 2, 2011 at 2:07 pm

      Not sure the kind of theocratic state they dream of would count as a stateless society even inside the head of a particularly dim Constable Savage.

  4. August 2, 2011 at 1:47 pm

    Problem is – I was one and we had an organization Anarchist Revolutionary Students in Education. I’m sure the acronym was apt. We used to send our demands to the admin on loo roll. Now, as a respectable conservative libertarian, I miss all the fun.

    AE – thought crime, yes but wait for the thought pre-crime.

    • August 2, 2011 at 2:16 pm

      Though pre-crime? Arrested for something you haven’t thought yet but were going to in think in the future? :shock: Christ, James, don’t give them ideas.

  5. Robert Edwards
    August 2, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    I think there’s still a basic semantic confusion at work, another one of which is a definition of ‘informer.’ We all know that every French girl who gave a German a dose of the clap was in the Resistance, but those who advocate this idea (and I’m still not sure it won’t grow legs, God forbid) are unaware (particularly the plods, an organisation, let’s face it, not exactly stuffed with PhDs, that we would then be nanoseconds away from kids informing on their parents, disgruntled ex’s doing the same and it will not end with ‘anarchists’ – it will burgeon into smokers, swearers and whoever else pops up on the radar. Actually, people pissed off about parking regulations are probably next on the list.

    So into which category does Swampy (remember him?) fit? Nihilist, Anarchist, Lefty, Crusty or wanker? Bexcause if people are going to start informing on the latter, then a large chunk of the population are at risk of the GULAG…

  6. Thornavis.
    August 2, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    What about that copper, Plodmore or something, who stood in the Lib Dem interest for London Mayor, didn’t he get into hot water for going onto the net and saying something vaguely nice about anarchism ? They’re everywhere I tell you !

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