The talk I gave at last year’s Anarchapulco was recently posted publicly. I’m quite pleased by how it came out. If you can make it to the next Anarchapulco (www.anarchapulco.com), do. Here is the link for last year's talk:
But the reason for this article is to study one particular response to my talk, in the form of a comment posted in a Facebook group by someone going by the name of “Jeff Payton.” (I don’t know if that’s his real name, and there are a lot of people named that, so be careful who you judge.) Here was his comment, in its entirety:
“This post of Mr. Larken Rose saddens me. Couldn’t make it half way through the video. America, our fore fathers and the men and women that died for our right to have this freedom of speech is everything that he is FUCKING. This man needs to be hanged for being a traitor to the United States of America.”
I debated whether to use his name, but I think wishing for me to be murdered probably earned him a little recognition. And hey, if he believes what he said, shouldn’t he be proud to have the world hear his message, and know it was him saying it?
This is by no means the first time, nor will it be the last, that a true believer in the god called “government” has wished for my demise. That’s mostly just worth chuckling about. But Mr. Payton also gives us a very telling look into the psychology of statists. Here are a few things about his comment that are worth noting:
1 - My talk “saddened” him. Statists become so emotionally invested in their belief in, and loyalty to, the mythical deity known as “government,” that they are literally sad when they see someone who is not mentally and psychologically enslaved to a parasitical ruling class.
2 - He admitted that he didn’t, and couldn’t, watch the whole video—which is barely over half an hour long. The idea of not mindlessly worshiping the ruling class is such blasphemy to his ears that he couldn’t continue to listen.
3 - Then he does the obligatory worshiping of “our fore fathers” (sic). He probably didn’t make it to the part where I pointed out that plenty of those “forefathers” were vehemently opposed to the Constitution, predicting it would quickly create a tyranny worse than a king. (And they were right.) Instead, he just represents them as some vague category of infallible gods that no one should ever say anything negative about.
4 - He also repeats the looney notion that the mercenaries of the U.S. ruling class (“the troops”) died for our rights. No doubt he shut his ears tight when I was explaining how silly it is to think that anything other than the U.S. “government”—which the military works for—poses any real threat to the freedom of Americans.
5 - Notice how he addresses “America,” showing both his collectivist mindset, and his trained-in loyalty to a big slave plantation. He basically did the equivalent of saying, “My fellow slaves, look how this one uppity slave is insulting our brave, wise, and noble master!”
6 - This may be a technicality, but the “Bill of Rights” (the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution) does not even pretend to create the right for a person to speak his mind. The First Amendment simply says that the U.S. “government” should not infringe upon that already-existing natural human right. By analogy, if I wrote down on a piece of paper, “Jeff Payton has the right to live, and should not be killed for having stupid opinions,” would that piece of paper be the reason that he shouldn’t be murdered? Would I have given him the right to live by writing that down? Of course not. Likewise, the people who penned the First Amendment weren’t pretending to give anyone a right they didn’t already have. But that doesn’t stop the parchment-worshipers from crediting some scribbles of ink as the source of individual liberty.
7 - He asserts that I am a traitor “to the United States of America.” And, as I explained in my talk, he obviously has no clear idea—only vague, blurry mush—what the hell he even means by that. I am absolutely and proudly a “traitor” to the ruling class here—the parasitical crooks who violently dominate and extort the American people. But how am I a “traitor” to anything or anyone else—to the people, for example—simply because I oppose the enslavement of my fellow man? The Stockholm Syndrome is strong with this one.
8 - I had to save the best for last, even though a lot of calm, thinking people would have noticed it first: Mr. Payton thinks I should praise various statist people and institutions for (supposedly) granting me my freedom of speech …….. which I should then be murdered for exercising. Beyond the glaringly obvious stupidity of that, the guy obviously does not at all believe in individual liberty, and yet he has been thoroughly trained (again, as I explained in my talk) to confuse enslavement with freedom. I oppose the state victimizing him (and everyone else), and his response is to wish me dead, in the name of freedom.
When Russians, or people in China, or North Koreans show that level of bat-shit crazy loyalty to their political masters, Americans rightfully mock them. Well it’s high time the same lunacy be mocked when it infects the minds of Americans. So that’s what I did in my speech. And I will continue to do so, unless and until some brain-dead slaves like Mr. Payton decide to kill me for it.
(To anyone who hasn’t yet read it, my book, “The Most Dangerous Superstition,” gives a far more detailed explanation of how political mythology transforms otherwise decent people—which I assume Mr. Payton to be—into raving, pro-violent lunatics.)