Do you make a habit of stealing other people’s wallets? Do you hire a third party to kidnap and torture pot smokers? Have you ever ordered someone to bomb innocent people? If you said no then congratulations, you are an anarchist (if you said yes, then I’d recommend talking to a therapist).
How can I make such a bold claim, I don’t even know your name and yet have the audacity to call you are an anarchist. And an anarchist, aren’t those the punk teenagers that run around in bandanas throwing molotovs?
And yet that’s exactly what I’m saying. No matter who you are, your religion, your nationality, or even your political leanings; you are, without a doubt, an anarchist at heart. And by the end of this article you’ll not only know why, you might just end up embracing it.

Let me start out by explaining what an anarchist actually is. Etymologically the word anarchy comes from the Greek “an” meaning “not, without” and “arkhos” meaning “ruler” and literally means “without rulers.” But anarchy is so much more than just a negative position. In fact in the words of Jeff Berwick “anarchy is a word that, properly expressed, is a synonym for love.”
How can that be? Well first off we don’t spend our free time blowing things up (in fact peace is kind of the central plank of our philosophy). We are those crazy folks that think that people are better off when they interact voluntary, that the initiation of force is wrong, and who see the State for what it truly is – a gun – and it’s pointed directly at you. Quite simply, we want to see people at gun point, we want them to live their lives however they want (as long as they don’t hurt others).

Now ask yourself, do you disagree with anything in that definition? If the word “anarchist” is making it hard to swallow feel free to switch it with “human” because to be an anarchist is basic human instinct. For example, when you go to the store to get some milk the thought almost certainly never crosses your mind to shoot the cashier and take it; no you inherently know that to get the milk you have to trade for it, murder and theft are just so unnatural that you probably never even think about it. And you can see this in all walks of life, if you and your friend have an argument you talk it out instead of resorting to violence, if someone gives you a dirty look while you’re driving you just ignore it instead of running them over, and if you like someone you ask them out instead of kidnaping them. Voluntary interaction is our default, it’s as natural as breathing, and it’s utterly anarchistic.

You see anarchy is literally all around us; it’s what keeps the lights on at night and makes the internet such a wonderful thing; without it, we’d still be living in caves (and even that required some idea of property rights). Take the example of the internet, the single greatest market institution in human history; no government could have made it. The State seeks to build a stable, never changing system; and the internet has to change every day, no one person could keep up with it, it takes a market of billions of individuals. Granted, the government did technically invent the system the internet is based on but before the market took over it was only used by the military to destroy things; the market used it to create a whole new interconnected world. Any time the State tries to interfere with the internet it only destroys it; censorship, blocking websites, destroying net neutrality, everything the State touches turns to ash. If you want to see what State institutions look like look at the DMV, if you want something efficient look to the market.

Just think about that. The greatest tool we have today, something you can’t imagine life without, and it only exists because of anarchy. Everything that makes the world great, from peace to pizza, is fueled and driven by anarchy. All of your interactions with other people, all those shaken hands and dollars paid, it’s all anarchy. This anarchy stuff is starting to sound pretty good isn’t it?


“Sure,” you say “maybe the market does make some good stuff, but what about monopolies? That’s why I’m no anarchist; we need the government to protect us from those greedy business men.”
Well congratulations, accepting that monopolies are bad is a great first step. Let’s look at how monopolies are made; a company wants to make as much money as possible so they go to the State and get special powers their competition doesn’t have through intellectual “property”, subsidies, regulation they can deal with that small companies can’t, or outright exemptions. These monopolistic “rights” granted to corporations do indeed give the corporation powers that it should never have had, but it’s only possible with the State. In a freed market it is impossible to have a long term monopoly because if one company is making money on a product, more companies are going to get into that market to make some of that money for themselves, which they can do if there’s no State to keep them out. On top of that, the State has the biggest and most dangerous monopoly of all, a monopoly on the initiation of force. If you’re truly anti-monopoly you have to be anti-State.

“Ok Mr. Anarchist you make some good points, but what about the things your precious market just won’t build? Who’s going to build the roads?”
Oh no! Not roads, the anarchist’s kryptonite! Joking aside, roads are a very simple technology and have been built by private individuals/companies for centuries. Companies need roads for transport, shipping, and for customers to get to their locations, and housing communities will have to build local roads for their houses, so there’s no reason to think the roads won’t be built. In fact, the roads would be better because, unlike government, companies would have an incentive to keep the roads safe and paved; that’s right in the freed markets potholes will be a thing of the past. So ask yourself, would you rather roads be built by companies that have an incentive not only to build them but to keep them in good condition, or the State who has to pay for them with stolen money and ends up neglecting them anyway?
Besides who says we need roads in the freed market? Who’s to say that we won’t finally get those flying cars we’ve been promised for decades?

Right about now you’re probably thinking to yourself, “Well I guess you’ve got a point, maybe this voluntary interaction stuff is a good basis for society. But, while I’m not going to kill people or steal from them, how do I know my neighbor wont? That’s why we need a government, who else is going to protect me from criminals?”
Well first off I’d remind you that, even if they let their dog pee on your yard, your neighbor is still human and that instinct for peace is just as strong for them as it is for you. That said there is a minority of people that, for whatever reason, do murder and steal; but how does that justify building a State that murders and steals on the global scale? These people can be addressed by a number of institutions in a voluntary society (defense resolution agencies for example) without embracing the pure evil of the State.

So I’ve explained how this anarchy stuff isn’t the boogie may you’ve been told it is, explained how the most common arguments for the State don’t hold water, and even made you smile a few times (hopefully). So are you convinced? Are you about to jump on Facebook and change your political affiliation to anarchist? Even if you don’t admit it today, there is still an anarchist inside you, why not let it out?