The Threat Of Revolt, The General Strike, And The Myth Of Non-Violence
A tactic used by the vocal left is the threat of violence, or revolt if their needs are not met. The tactic of revolt is ancient. This modern version of revolt is a product of The Myth Of The General Strike. (I am referring to Burnham’s treatment) The contemporary version is the Economic Armageddon and Political Upheaval of the classes.
The opposing argument is the libertarian argument for private property, and private capitalism, and the Randian version of Atlas shrugging.
Both of these are myths of the general strike.
The argument, or myth in any of it’s versions, is disingenuous. Workers will eventually relent, be replaced, or the businesses close. Entrepreneurs will be replaced by others. It is the state who would suffer it’s loss of legitimacy in the event of failure. But a new group would take over in government, and life would go on.
An analysis of history tells us that it is much easier for the minority with wealth to pay another minority to violently oppress the peasantry, and to obtain their compliance going forward with commercial incentives and rewards, than it is for a peasantry to organize a movement of a general strike. In fact, the government conducts all general strikes, because without government suport and threats of government violence on business people, they would largely be irrelevant.
When a ruling class loses it’s will for violence, the society loses it’s binding mythology. It simply opens it’s ranks for a different group to take over the ruling class, and redefine the existing network-map of property rights, and the dispensation of them. However, provided that the ranks of the elite are open to absorb those ambitous people from all classes, and the elite retain sufficient willingness to use violence, the myth of the revolt is specious. Because people simply need leaders in order to revolt.
Before an elite allows itself to be displaced, it commits fraud. They verbally ally themselves with ‘the people’.
All societies determine the scope of private and group property differently.
There are limits to the scope of private property. Property is necessary because of the limits of people’s knowledge in time. However, there are points at which certain forms of private property deny service to consumers, (such as misuse of intellectual property rights) and therefore it is theft from consumers. Why? Because consumers forgo the opportunity for violence, and in doing so pay for the cost of creating that private property. So denying the market a good in order to increase prices and profits is a theft of the costs paid by consumers to create the opportunity for private property. So the limits to private property come from artificial scarcity (denying a good to market), whereas reinforcement of private property comes from the
There are limits to the scope of public property, because there are limits to the amount of knowledge that can exist in any person’s mind, and limits to decision making among groups of individuals, and distortionary effects (basically, perceived risk reduction, limited by the amount of knowledge of the largest population able to exercise it’s will) and the rapidity of timely action, and because of the limits of timely action, limitations on the opportunity cost for the group. ie: increases in private property are an opportunity cost reduction for a group.
The purpose of the union movement is to allow the populists to use threats against the capitalists, without fear that the capitalists can respond in kind, and thereby allow government to profit from intermediation, thereby forming an alliance between the unions and the state, regulated only by the long term (and therefore easily imperceptible) impact of their intervention on tax revenues.
Violence should not be eliminated from our discourse. It is a ruse. Starting with a principle of non violence is and always shall be a ruse.
The fact is, that ALL movements that presume non-violence are attempts at theft of the cost needed to create private property.
Costs are the only means of honest political dialog. Both direct costs and opportunity costs.
The Principle of Non-violence is fraud.
Plain and simple.