An Essential Step toward Genuine Freedom
August 08, 2006
Democratic Action Alliance animated gif [traditional Chinese]
Click to enlarge and trigger animation
Freely translated, the gif reads:
To manifest Heaven's Will
A Bian must be toppled
A Bian Step Down!
For a Revolution of Conscience
The People must arise
The Democratic Action Alliance
Huang Kuang-kuo, Chang Ya-chung
web address: http://www.daa-tw.com/
Huang Kuang-kuo, center, holds up a sign calling for President Chen Shui-bian to step down at a press conference outside Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall yesterday. Huang is joined by DAA convener Chang Ya-chung, left, and former Democratic Progressive Party chairman Hsu Hsin-liang, right
Photo: Wang Min-wei, Taipei Times
The China Desk enthusiastically supports the Democratic Action Alliance's "Down with A Bian" protest movement.
As readers of the China Desk know, I detest that abomination known as democracy.
As I have explained in previous China Desk articles, I have reluctantly concluded that natural rights and political liberty will never be secure under a democracy, or even a constitutional republic.
The natural rights and political liberty of individual human beings can only be secured under market anarchism, or some other political system structurally similar to market anarchism.
A democracy, or even a constitutional republic, simply does not contain the necessary structural constraints to safeguard against creeping dictatorship.
The problem with democracies, and even constitutional republics, is their territorial monopoly on the use of physical force.
Once individual human beings grant a political entity -- any political entity -- a monopoly on the use of physical force within any given territory, they have already "given away the store."
The most essential check and balance on the limitless expansion of government power, is the right of individual human beings to use physical force in defense of their life, liberty, and property.
The moment individual human beings surrender this natural right to a political authority -- any political authority -- the game is already lost.
The question then is no longer whether the individuals affected will lose their freedom. The question becomes when the individuals affected will lose their freedom.
Market anarchists guard against this ever present threat to natural rights and individual liberty by categorically refusing to surrender the right to use physical force to any political authority in the first place.
Expecting traditional "checks and balances" to limit the power of a political authority -- any political authority -- after one has granted that political authority a legal monopoly on the use of force, is naive beyond belief. It is as naive as the Frogs' belated attempt to recall the Heron in the Aesop's Fable, "The Frogs ask for a King."
George W. Bush may be dumb, but he's not stupid. He understands this harsh reality of political power perfectly. As he put it, succinctly if not elegantly:
"I don't give a goddamn, I'm the President and the Commander-in-Chief. Do it my way. Stop throwing the Constitution in my face, It's just a goddamned piece of paper!"
George W. Bush, President and Commander in Chief
The Constitution of these United States of America -- "Just a goddamned piece of paper!"
Chen Shui-bian understands this harsh reality of political power every bit as well as George W. Bush. Chen knows that 70% of the Chinese people on Taiwan want him to step down. Yesterday is none too soon.
So why doesn't he simply defer to "The Will of The People" and voluntarily step down?
Chen will not voluntarily step down because he knows that a "democratically elected president" is not a "public servant," but an absolute monarch with a four year term limit.
Chen will not voluntarily step down because he knows that democracy is not government "of the people, by the people, and for the people," but government "of an elective dictator, by an elective dictator, and for an elective dictator."
Most importantly, Chen will not voluntarily step down because he knows that government officials take their orders from higher ranking government officials, and not from any noble-sounding but meaningless abstractions such as "The People."
When push comes to shove, military and police personnel will not obey their Bosses in Theory, i.e., the angry voters storming the barricades in front of the Presidential Palace, but their Boss in Fact, Chen Shui-bian.
The bullets they fire at their Bosses in Theory, "The People," on orders from their Boss in Fact, Taiwan's little emperor, will be any but theoretical. They will be all too real.
So why am I supporting the Democratic Action Alliance's "Down with A Bian" protest movement?
Because ridding Taiwan of a cronyist dictatorship is an eminently worthwhile short term objective that does not conflict with the promotion of market anarchism as a long term objective.
Because if market anarchism is considered beyond the pale even in Europe and America, imagine how far beyond the pale it is on Taiwan. When even jaded intellectuals in "mature democracies" refuse to recognize that a paradigm shift from "minarchism" (minimal government) to "anarchism" (no government) is long overdue, imagine how difficult it is for fledgling democrats in "immature democracies" to question their newly adopted political faith.
Because believers in democracy need to learn the hard way that democracy doesn't work. Only then will they be emotionally and psychologically receptive to creative, unorthodox, "outside the box" alternatives such as market anarchism.
Democratic universalists like to hold forth on the distinction between "mature democracies" and "immature democracies."
I have to laugh. To me the distinction between "mature democracies" and "immature democracies" is a distinction without a difference.
To me the term "mature democracy" is an oxymoron. A mature society would not tolerate a political system so crudely defective as democracy.
To me the term "immature democracy" is a redundancy. If a society is "democratic," it is a sure sign that society remains hopelessly immature.
Intellectual mainstream commitment to democracy is not about rational deference to objective reality. Intellectual mainstream commitment to democracy is about mindless conformance to a collective delusion.
Given that a critical mass of Republic of China voters remain convinced that "democracy" is the ne plus ultra of political systems, what is the dedicated market anarchist to do?
Market anarchists must help the public in western bloc elective dictatorships, better known as "democracies," to awaken from their collective delusion, the way the public in eastern bloc non-elective dictatorships awoke from their collective delusion in 1989.
The ongoing Pan Blue attempt to topple Chen Shui-bian, belatedly joined by elements within the Pan Green camp, is an essential step on the long and painful journey toward genuine freedom.
If the attempt to topple Chen succeeds, the Chinese people on Taiwan will enjoy a welcome reprieve from a corrupt demagogue who has nearly emptied out the nation's coffers.
If, on the other hand the attempt to topple Chen fails, the world will be one step closer to the complete and utter disillusionment that must precede a paradigm shift from minarchism to anarchism.