If You Were King | Larken Rose [Transcript]

If You Were King | Larken Rose

Larken Rose - If You Were King02

So, the world is a pretty messed up place, but just think how great it would be if you were in charge. If you were selected to be King of the World, just think of all the good you could do if you were given unlimited power to make things right. You would make the world a veritable Utopia: you could feed the poor, and house the homeless, and defeat the wicked, and protect the innocent. You could save the world! Everyone would love you and thank you. If you just had the power, you could make everything fair, and just, and safe.

James Madison - Definition of Tyranny

Well, no, you couldn’t. You might try, and you might mean well, but any great and noble plans you had would soon fall apart, and you would turn into a tyrant. This isn’t because you’re stupid or because you’re a bad person. Even if you’re quite intelligent and have the best of intentions, all your effort to use your power for good would be an absolute, complete, and utter failure. Why?

Well, let’s consider a few examples.

Agenda Item #1: Helping the Poor

Suppose as a benevolent King, you decided to give lots of stuff to the needy to help the poor. Surely, that would be a noble thing to do and would make society better, wouldn’t it? Well, no, and here’s why. Whether it’s a King, a Congress, or anything else, government doesn’t create any wealth. Any wealth it gives away it first has to take from somebody else. As King, before you could give anything to the poor, you’d have to take it from someone else. But, suppose that someone else didn’t want to hand it over. Whether he just wants to keep it himself, or wants to give it away by himself, or thinks you’d do a bad job of it, if for any reason, he didn’t want to fund your plan, what would you do about it?

Scumbag rich kid redistribute me, statism, healthcare insurance, money, taxation, wealth redistribution

Jesus - help your neighborIf you’re King, you don’t just ask people nicely. Anyone can do that, but no one has to listen to them or cooperate. As King, you would be commanding people to fund your ideas, and those commands if they’re going to be any more than just suggestions, will be backed by the threat of punishment for those who don’t obey you. If some peasant doesn’t think he can afford it, or doesn’t trust you to spend it wisely, or just wants to keep his own money, what will you do about it? Just let it slide? Not if you want to have any power. If your subjects can ignore you without any consequences, then you have no power.

The less public provisions for the poor the richer they were

So, the peasant who wouldn’t fund your plan must be punished, and made an example of. Suddenly, you’re not just benevolently giving stuff away. You’re hurting people who don’t want to do things your way. Whether you execute the peasant, or imprison him, or burn his house down, or take some of his stuff, whatever, you’ll be doing harm to him simply because he wouldn’t let you take his money. Suddenly, being King isn’t just about being “caring” and “generous.” It’s not just about “giving” and “helping.” It’s about controlling and punishing. It’s about threatening and hurting people.

government war children courage; other peoples money generosity

Agenda Item #2: Serving the Common Good

Hilary Clinton - We're going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good

Next, maybe you’d want to build public schools so your subjects’ children could get a good education, and you’d build a big library, and a public park, and museums, and zoos, and a great road system, and hospitals, and all things sorts of things that will benefit the people in general. And, your people will love you for being so “charitable” and “thoughtful,” but again, how do you pay for it? Kings don’t get castles and piles of gold by working hard. They get those things by taxing their subjects. Every penny you spend, whether you’re spending it on yourself, or on so-called “public projects,” you first have to take from your peasants. In reality, you’re not giving them anything. You’re merely spending their money for them.

Penn Jilette - Government forced charity at gunpoint

What if they wanted to spend it some other way? Well, if you let everyone spend his own money, you wouldn’t have any power. Asking nicely won’t do it. If some peasant wants to buy a bigger house instead of helping to pay for a library, or wants to buy more land, or save for the future instead of chipping in for a public school, what will you do? If you do nothing and let him get away with that, all your power is gone. Again, to remain King, you have to punish those who won’t fund your agenda.

I'm from the government - I'm here to help

So, not only are you merely buying the peasantry things with their own money, rather than giving them anything that actually belongs to you, you’re also threatening to cage or otherwise punish them if they resist your efforts to spend their money. You can loudly proclaim that it’s “for their own good” and that your plan is “better for people as a whole,” but if some of them don’t see it that way you’re still going to have to send out your mercenaries to crush any dissenters.

Socialism - Force Common Good

Agenda Item #3: Enforcing Good Choices

So, trying to be a benevolent King by giving your subjects things that you bought with money you first stole from them, turns out less noble and less fun than you would have expected. So, you try out a different approach.

Barack Obama Mitt Romney - Debate - Aigner, J - Burger King McDonald's Which Fries Are More Healthier

You decide to use your power and authority to make people live healthier lives. You require everyone to exercise for at least an hour a day and eat a well-balanced diet. Undoubtedly, that would improve the health of many of your subjects, so how could they complain about that? What could be wrong with that? Well, what do you do if somebody disobeys? If some peasant won’t eat his vegetables, what do you do about it? Ask nicely? Being in charge isn’t about asking. It’s about telling. It’s about commanding. And, a command isn’t a command if there are no consequences for disobedience. So, the non-compliant would have to be punished. Whether you take some of the peasant’s money and call it a “fine,” or put him in prison, or have him publicly flogged, you would have to intentionally and publicly hurt him one way or another simply because he wouldn’t follow your advice.

Thomas Jefferson - Nanny State - FDA - Food and Drug

If you ban smoking, or drinking, or using drugs, or eating too much candy, there have to be adverse consequences to any peasant who disobeys. No matter how good you think your suggestions choices might be, you’re going to have to have your mercenaries forcibly punish, in one way or another, those who refuse to make the choices you think they should make; the choices you tell them to make.

Ron Paul - Legalization of Drugs; war on drugs; illegal

As a result, suddenly you’re not just a “helpful leader,” you’re a vicious thug. Even if the choices you’re forcing people to make, are what they should be choosing on their own anyway, suddenly your “good intentions,” when combined with the exercise of power, become acts of violence, and suddenly your victims—I mean your “subjects”—don’t seem all that appreciative anymore. In fact, they seem to resent you and your supposedly “benevolent” agenda. But, maybe you can still find a way to use your power for good.

Obama, Michelle - Marxism Pie

Agenda Item #4: Protecting the Innocent

What if, instead of trying to coerce your subjects into making “good choices” or funding “useful projects,” you stick to something more basic: just trying to protect the good people from any nasty crooks and thugs who might be living in your kingdom, which, in this case, is the entire planet. Surely, there can’t be anything wrong with that! If there is any way to use power for good, it has to be protecting the good from the wicked. So, that’s what you devote yourself to, confident that you’ll finally make the world a better place as King.

Government in a Nutshell - Lebowski - I got an idea! kidnap; imprison; harass; thieve; kill

But, again, your subjects don’t have a choice about funding it. If they think your enforcers are abusive or corrupt, if they think your view of justice is skewed, if they don’t think your protection services aren’t worth the price, do you allow them to opt out? Not if you want to remain King. The mercenaries you hire, the prisons you built, the army you create with its war machines, not all of your peasants will want it, or will agree with how it functions. Do you just say, “I know best!” and “It’s for your own good!” and then lock up those who doesn’t pay? Do you force your version of “justice,” and “security” on them, force them to pay for it, and expect them to like it, and thank you for it?

Godfather - leave government extortion racket

yo dawg - force will ideas onto others

To say that all you’re doing is “protecting” people while you’re sending armed thugs to collect payments from people who don’t want your so-called “protection,” makes you look more like the mafia than like a savior and protector. If some peasant wants to protect himself, or wants to hire someone else than you and your goons to protect them, do you let him or do you force him to fund your idea of “justice” and “security”? If a peasant doesn’t like what your army does, or how it does it, do you allow him to choose not to financially support your agenda?

America's Finances - debt, deficit, revenue, reagan, ghw bush, clinton, gw bush, obama

Again, retaining your power requires you to violently impose your agenda on your subjects, forcing them to fund it, crushing any resistance, and doing all of that in the name of “defending” them against thugs and thieves. And, that’s more than a little ironic. It’s hard to feel “noble” and “righteous” or even “honest” while you’re routinely committing aggression against people in the name of “protecting” them.

army hero killing for a paycheck 13661771_926087154168539_5808430207017931018_o

Agenda #5: Sit in Your Castle and Do Nothing

Well, it seems your ambition of using your newfound, unlimited power to “fix” the world hasn’t turned out so well. You tried to do “good stuff” and be “caring” and “compassionate,” but everything came out as threats and violence because, after all, that’s what law and government are.

Larken Rose - pay for government taxation caged jail compassionate

So, in desperation you decide to do nothing. You leave your subjects alone, and you hide in your castle, sulking. But, wait! How did you pay for the castle, and your guards, and all the luxuries you have? Even if you do away with most of it, whatever you end up with, are your subjects going to want to voluntarily pay for you to sit on your lazy butt, while they do with the challenges of reality on their own? Doubtful. So, if you intend to continue in this life of luxury as King, you’re still going to have to force your subjects to fund it, and that means, even if you do nothing at all for the peasants, you’re still going to need guards, and an army, and tax collectors, just to remain King.

No matter how peaceful, humanitarian enforced at point of a gun

The Punch Line

And, that brings us to the final agenda item, the one you should have started with. When you were made King, and appointed to be in charge of everything, you should have said, “No.” When offered the opportunity to rule and command your fellow man, you should have turned it down. If given power over others, what you should have done with that power is nothing, absolutely nothing, because power via brute force cannot fix the world.

Banksy - Obey - just following orders rules

Authoritarian control, whether wielded by a King, or an elected government, or a constitutional republic, cannot improve society. Why not? Because all such power, by its very nature, is nothing more than the ability to threaten people and hurt people. And, whatever your intentions may be, you can’t improve human society, you can’t create peaceful civilization, by threatening and hurting people. Shouldn’t that be obvious and self-evident?

Bastiat - How to Identify Plunder

Sadly, almost everyone has fallen for the utterly insane notion that the human race can be made more moral and more civilized by taking a few human beings and giving them permission to threaten and hurt, to forcibly rule and control everyone else. Such an idea is pure lunacy, no matter how popular it may be, and no matter how much rhetoric and how many excuses you pile on top of it.

Violence to Enforce Worthless Ideas

You can pontificate all you want about constitutions and elections, representative government, “consent of the governed, and so on and so forth, but that won’t change reality. And, anyone who dares to objectively consider things for five minutes will see that the reality of the situation is this. The authoritarian power, in any form, regardless of the goal or motives, is nothing more than the addition of aggressive, immoral violence in this society. It doesn’t matter how many nice suits, fancy hats, grandiose buildings, and pompous rituals and ceremonies you use. Whether it comes from King, you, or a bunch of elected politicians, the power to rule is always, and inherently, diametrically opposed to the power of being human.

Statist Logic - No Self-Governance Allowed, politician, citizen

Want to fix the world? Throw the crown away. Ignore politics. Don’t threaten, attack, or rob your neighbor, and don’t vote for anyone who offers to threaten, attack, or rob your neighbor on your behalf. Don’t, by yourself or by way of those in power, try to force others to be what you wish they were, or force them to fund what you wish they would fund. Instead, try treating your neighbor as if he owns himself, because, he does.

You own yourslef - Google voluntarism

If you want a more thorough understanding of why the game of politics is always destructive and immoral, get a copy of The Most Dangerous Superstition, available at Amazon.com.

Larken Rose

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