Voting is Violence

February 12th, 2014   Submitted by Danilo Cuellar

GunVotedOn January 28, 2014 our fearless gang leader gave his annual State of the Union address to the group of baboons known as Congress. He vowed to raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10, further destroying basic employment opportunities for unskilled and inexperienced workers. He also said he will push forward on his agenda “with or without the approval of Congress,” in the true spirit of a dictator. Now the subordinate thieves, liars, and murderers are preparing for their 2014 elections. If you want to live in a world of abundant prosperity, peaceful interactions, and voluntary associations please stop participating in this freak show circus of force and aggression. It is degrading to our humanity and violent towards our neighbors.

Voting is the shameful irony of asking our masters for permission to be free. We cannot achieve freedom through pleasant niceties and formalities. We must reject this disgusting charade and replace it with endeavors that will educate us, and make us stronger. Every minute spent voting is a minute lost from the productive areas of our lives. Every minute spent debating and discussing politics, or the ethics of the activities of our masters is a minute utterly wasted and stolen from us as maliciously as our money is tangibly stolen from us through taxation, or intangibly stolen from us through inflation.

Even if voting did achieve something, which it does not, it is still a barbarous act. It is an action with the hopeful effect of pointing the guns of the “State” at our neighbor instead of us. To think that our problems will be alleviated by simply choosing the correct dictator is both naïve and puerile. It is a fantasy as pitiful as the belief in Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, or the Easter Bunny, the only difference being that the belief in the “State” wreaks unimaginable destruction, brutality, imprisonment, suffering, misery, and death around the world.

Many mythical phrases give us the illusion that we, the people, have control. “Representative democracy,” “consent of the governed,” “government by the people, of the people, and for the people” etc. These are all pleasant euphemisms to distract us from the stark reality that we are all human chattel to be milked. To think otherwise is to view our authoritarian rulers as our equals. This is a logical impossibility since that would subject them to the same “laws” to which we are all subjected, which would imply that they essentially have no power. Their power originates in the minds of people and is most clearly understood in that their actions not only lie outside of the realm of conventional morality and ethics, but also of their contrived “laws.”

The terms above exist only to mollify the palpable oppression all peons feel in their daily lives, and to provide them the illusion that may actually effect meaningful change through the political process that has been created, adapted, and administered by our respective masters. To attempt reform by “writing to one’s congressman” is to effectively admit that we have no power over ourselves and that we must ask, nay beg, for permission to be free, which in itself is an open confirmation that we are not free. If we are not free than by logical deduction we must conclude that we are enslaved.

Some may say “Stop being so negative! Appreciate your life and be happy for what you have!” To such people I ask “How many freedoms will you allow to be taken from before you resist? How many laws must be passed before you say ‘No, I will not comply’? How much privacy must be destroyed before you say ‘This is enough!’? What is your threshold? How much monetary theft and economic rape is too much?”

Voting is the disgraceful pleading with our masters. It is the tacit admission that the theft was justifiable and that, according to the established “political process” we must perform our “civic duty” to pitifully beg for the scraps that we ourselves created through our hard work, and creative innovation. It is a slap in the face to all those in the productive class. Do not participate in this farce. It is demeaning, and dehumanizing. Recognize no master over your body and property but yourself.

All politics is violence. Delegating rights we don’t have to a “public servant” it is a pitiful attempt at justifying theft, imprisonment, torture, and murder of our fellow man. Herein lies the underlying inconsistency. Nobody can delegate “rights” to another person that one did not already possess. We cannot steal from our neighbor. We cannot threaten our neighbor with arbitrary “laws”. We cannot extort, torture, or imprison our neighbor for failing to comply with our “laws”. We cannot buy goods and services, use them in the name of the “public good” and then send the bill to our neighbor. Yet these very wretchedly fraudulent actions and more we “legitimize” constantly when we go out and exercise the State worshiping racket known as voting.

There is no pride whatsoever in choosing the Socialist, the Fascist, or the Communist to sit on the throne of power . Belief in “government” has caused most of the atrocities we read and learn about in the history books, and which are continuing to this day. Government only exists to perpetuate itself. Government is not a necessary evil. It is an unnecessary evil. Let go of this fantasy.

Vote for nobody in the next election. Take responsibility for your own life. Get off the couch and meet your neighbors. You will discover they have similar problems as you. We have more in common with each other, and with those “terrorists” overseas, than we will ever have with our “elected leaders”. Where must they lead us to? Are the people really a flock of sheep or a herd of cattle that they must be led? Humans are not cattle. Be your own governor, senator, speaker, and president. No man has the authority, wisdom, or right to rule over any other man.

Voting symbolizes the inherent immorality in the democratic concept of electing anything by majority rule, and coercively applying that ruling to all the inhabitants of a nation State. Centrally planned monopolies don’t work in education, retirement services, military or money. They all fail miserably because free will can never be predicted by any centrally planned agency, not that government has any intention to satisfy human desire. Once a monopoly is established and supported by the guns of government, prices soar, resource wastefulness abounds, and quality plummets. This is quite predictable, as any inhabitant of a previous Communist or Socialist society can attest to. If Cuba is such a “worker’s paradise” why do people from the other Caribbean islands risk life and limb to take a boat 200 miles to Florida rather than travel 50 miles to Cuba? Why do you never hear of people illegally crossing the border into North Korea?

“A ballot is just a substitute for a bullet. If your vote isn’t backed by a bullet, it is meaningless. Without the bullet, people could ignore the election outcome. Voting would be pointless. Democracy has violence at its very core!” ~Muir Matteson, “The Nonviolent Zone”

The ease with which decent people engage in voting is a testament to the innate desire of men to bring about goodness in the world. However a clear distinction must be made between doing good yourself and trusting that murderous sociopaths using the guns of the “State” will do good on your behalf. The former is simple and direct; the latter is distorted and violent. The former is the way of peaceful individuals engaging in voluntary interactions; the latter is the way of hierarchical beasts. Make your choice.

50 Responses to “Voting is Violence”

  1. Obviously voting is okay for stock holders, right?

    • Danilo CuellarNo Gravatar says:

      How do you figure that? Why would stock holders be any less beholden to the inherent immorality of voting?

      • HReardenNo Gravatar says:

        In a free market a business would not be using violence and coercion to any extent to get peoples’ business. there would be no wrong in stock holders selecting who runs the business.

        • Danilo CuellarNo Gravatar says:

          If I am not mistaken, I believe he is referring to voting for who would occupy “public office”. You are correct in that assertion, given that the State stays out of the business by not awarding any kind of favoritism in the form of grants, subsidies, bailouts etc. This article is talking mainly of voting to elect those to rule over us.

          • Seth KingNo Gravatar says:

            No, I’m pretty sure Roman was saying that voting for your company’s board of directors is okay. He was just emphasizing the difference between voting for politicians and voting for non-government things.

            • Danilo CuellarNo Gravatar says:

              I stand corrected then. Yes voting I that instance would not necessarily be considered violent as being part of a company in any way is completely voluntary.

          • HReardenNo Gravatar says:

            I stated a free market. That means no government interference either to restrict or reward the business.

  2. HReardenNo Gravatar says:

    The act of voting is not violence. Nobody is physically harmed by someone making a selection on a ballot.

    • ErvNo Gravatar says:

      The act of voting is endorsement of the system that is violent at its root. When one votes, they are selecting who they would prefer to be holding the gun.

      Technically, you are correct, voting in and of itself is not violent, but neither is hiring a contract killer. Both acts remove the individual from the direct violence and leave them plausible deniability

      • Danilo CuellarNo Gravatar says:

        Well said Erv! Hiring an assassin to do the dirty work is just as reprehensible and perhaps more so, than is committing the act oneself. For this reason I have less contempt for common murders and thieves because at least they have the decency to commit the heinous act themselves rather than by using the immoral throne of power, facilitated by the guns of the “State”. It is always easier to blame someone else for the wretched act. Who is to blame for the murder of foreigners when American soldiers go overseas and kill indiscriminately anything that moves?

        • spiritspliceNo Gravatar says:

          Those who pull the trigger bear the primary responsibility. Does the person who hires a killer bear some responsibility? Sure. But not the majority of it.

          The idea that those who follow orders are less guilty for killing someone than those who tell them two is utter nonsense and turns morality on its head.

  3. YawnNo Gravatar says:

    Another shitty non-voting article. Non-voting doesn’t fuck the system, neither does voting re-enforce it.

    I am forced to vote in Australia. Vote and do something to fuck the system at the same time.

    • Danilo CuellarNo Gravatar says:

      It is true that the validity of our casting votes does not change much as elections are often fixed and manipulated. Non-voting is one of many things you can do in your life to reduce violence and further the cause of liberty. I am half Australian and half Peruvian. Are you saying there are no Australians who refuse to vote and accept the consequences? If not then maybe you should be the first.

    • geoihNo Gravatar says:

      What happens if you don’t vote in Australia?

    • HReardenNo Gravatar says:

      Forced to vote? Do they still use the Australian ballot system in Australia?

  4. Michael HendricksNo Gravatar says:

    Voting is not restricted to State elections. It is not restricted to elected people.

    Democracy is not synonymous with the State, and while we’re on the subject neither are nations.

    Capitalists who have been elected have murdered people, the same could be said for most ideologies, property schemes and beliefs.

    Authority is not restricted to the State and government goons. The market itself is authoritative, and hierarchal, Private property is a hierarchy, and is an authority.

    ” Nobody can delegate “rights” to another person that one did not already possess.”

    People don’t possess rights in the first place.

    “We cannot steal from our neighbor. We cannot threaten our neighbor with arbitrary “laws”. We cannot extort, torture, or imprison our neighbor for failing to comply with our “laws”.”

    Obviously this just isn’t true.

    “Voting symbolizes the inherent immorality in the democratic concept of electing anything by majority rule,”

    And the difference between this and the market is that in the market the people with the power are the people with money. Basically what your wanting to do is shift the power from one subset of folk to another and call it different, it seems.

    Other than the number of wills inherent within each system they remain fundamentally similar.

    “They all fail miserably because free will can never be predicted by any centrally planned agency, not that government has any intention to satisfy human desire.”

    Nope government goons want to satisfy their desires.

    “Once a monopoly is established and supported by the guns of government, prices soar, resource wastefulness abounds, and quality plummets.” Monopoly prices can exist in the market independent of an actual monopoly.

    “This is quite predictable, as any inhabitant of a previous Communist or Socialist society can attest to.” Not every conception of Communism or Socialism requires the State.

    • Danilo CuellarNo Gravatar says:

      “Voting is not restricted to State elections.” Granted but this article mainly discusses such instances.

      “Democracy is not synonymous with the State” True, there are many forms of government. What is your point?

      “Capitalists who have been elected have murdered people…” I do believe you are confusing Crony Capitalism with Anarcho-Capitalism.

      “The market itself is authoritative and hierarchical. Private property is a hierarchy and is an authority.” There is a fundamental difference between property rights and defense of those rights from one who would seek to transgress against them and a ruling class who claims the moral “authority” to rule over all of us. The former respects the non-aggression principle and self ownership whilst the latter respects nothing.

      “People don’t possess rights in the first place.” If by “rights” you are referring to the Bill of Rights. I agree as true rights are not granted by any government or ruling body. For by this logic, they may just as easily be taken away. I consider “rights” to be of a sovereign nature. Therefore the moment we are born we are endowed with these “sovereign rights” and given the duty to recognize them. If this is not the case than you are conceding that we are all born slaves, which I simply cannot accept.

      “Obviously this just isn’t true” Please explain. I would like to see it.

      “And the difference between this and the market is that the in the market the people with the power are the people with money.” You obviously are consistently mistaking Crony Capitalism for the Free Market composed of peaceful and voluntary interactions.

      “Monopoly prices can exist in the market independent of an actual monopoly.” Monopolies, in the sense that we all understand them to be, can only exist in a Crony Capitalist system whereby certain special interest groups are given favorable legislation, grants, subsidies, tax breaks etc. by the State which ensures their survival and dominance. They simply cannot exist in an Anarcho-Capitalistic system as they would quickly topple and be replaced by other small enterprising companies that can make products more efficiently for a cheaper price. Free and open competition ensures that no business grows to unwieldy proportions unless of course their product is wildly successful and popular with consumers, in which case its success is merited.

      • Michael HendricksNo Gravatar says:

        “rue, there are many forms of government. What is your point? ” The point is that voting and democracy are not the same as government and the State. You can have democracy without the State. Democracy is a decision making process, people use it to decide what move to see when they go with friends, and Mises described the market as democratic. The point is don’t conflate the two, and furthermore reform can be a useful strategy even if it’s not effective for dismantling the system.

        “I do believe you are confusing Crony Capitalism with Anarcho-Capitalism.” No I’m not capitalism (private ownership of the means of production) is a property scheme. I’m talking about capitalism as it actually exists today, right now, I’m not talking about some hypothetical capitalism that exists without the State. I understand the “pacifist” nature of Anarcho-Capitalism, but I do think it’s important to understand that capitalism isn’t inherently peaceful. Something that you probably already knew, but I think it’s important to mention none the less.

        “There is a fundamental difference between property rights and defense of those rights from one who would seek to transgress against them and a ruling class who claims the moral “authority” to rule over all of us.” The State claims the authority to rule, and secures that authority, whether it is “moral” or not doesn’t change the tactical and strategic nature of the organization.

        “The former respects the non-aggression principle and self ownership whilst the latter respects nothing. ” It respects force.

        “If this is not the case than you are conceding that we are all born slaves, which I simply cannot accept.” Whether or not you accept it or not doesn’t change the situation we’re in. We are slaves, we are born slaves to the tax farm ignoring the problem doesn’t make it go away. Ultimately I feel like these don’t vote articles amount to a human version of an ostrich sticking it’s head in the sand. To be clear here I’m saying accepting your situation is the first step toward improving it.

        “Therefore the moment we are born we are endowed with these “sovereign rights” ” No you’re not. If you want to be sovereign you’re going to have take steps to secure it.

        “Please explain. I would like to see it. ” Seriously? This kind of thing happens all the time. “But it won’t happen in AnCapistan!!!!!!” Uh, huh, okay.

        “You obviously are consistently mistaking Crony Capitalism for the Free Market composed of peaceful and voluntary interactions.” No I’m not, the definition of voluntary that voluntarists/AnCaps use is a hierarchy by definition. The property owner is the king of their property and gets to express their will on it. Much like the state actors do on their tax farms. This is not to say that a private property owner (like you or other AnCaps) are going to result to violence by default like the State does. I AM saying however that other than the number of wills involved in decreeing their whims the Crony Capitalism and Anarcho-Capitalism are the same. The systems are changed in a fundamental way, they ARE changed in a superficial way though.

        “Monopolies, in the sense that we all understand them to be, can only exist in a Crony Capitalist system” Whose understanding? If we go by what Mises wrote than your point doesn’t address what I said at all. Monopoly prices != monopolies.

        ” They simply cannot exist in an Anarcho-Capitalistic system as they would quickly topple and be replaced by other small enterprising companies that can make products more efficiently for a cheaper price” What about industries with high start up costs? A capitalist or entreprenuer can potentially secure a market in such a way that they can charge monopoly prices without having a true monopoly. For more information see Human Action.

        “Free and open competition ensures that no business grows to unwieldy proportions unless of course their product is wildly successful and popular with consumers, in which case its success is merited.” You mean like with the State? The State exists because people support it, they want it. You can say that this success isn’t “merited” if you’d like, but yet again we find that this has no bearing on the situation whatsoever.

        • Michael HendricksNo Gravatar says:

          That is the systems are not changed in a fundamental way. Paragraph 7.

        • Sam SpadeNo Gravatar says:

          Trying to understand, Michael: are you advocating something to the order of, “…it is our duty to vote in US federal and state ‘elections’…”? Or are you lamenting (as do I) at the redundancy of “non-voting” articles posted by libertarian/anarchists? If the latter (which your first comment appeared to indicate), I agree there is a superfluousness of non-voting articles.

          Mr. Cuellar’s essay is above average — he presented a number of excellent reasons to abstain from voting (“Abstain From Beans” http://www.anarchism.net/anarchism_abstainfrombeans.htm ) — and I have added it to my “non-voting” library. But I had to modify the title since I had at least one “Voting Is Violence”.

          Last time I participated in one of the bread-and-circus events called “national u.s. elections” was 1964. I don’t need additional essays to convince me to continue in my tradition of non-voting.

          But Danilo, you produced a good essay.

          Sam

          • Michael HendricksNo Gravatar says:

            “Michael: are you advocating something to the order of, “…it is our duty to vote in US federal and state ‘elections’…”” No, I’ve got an article that I’m working on that I think may clear this up. I’m just saying that there are some votes worth considering.

            ” Or are you lamenting (as do I) at the redundancy of “non-voting” articles posted by libertarian/anarchists? ”

            Yep we’ve pretty much said everything that can possibly be said about general elections. The system is broken and while it can be used to effect positive change it still remains a broken system.

            I feel like it’s time to stop bashing the State as immoral, and the statists as vile, and time to start looking for solutions. It wasn’t a bad article, the author did a good job. It’s just a boring topic to me.

            • Sam SpadeNo Gravatar says:

              Michael:

              “…The system is broken and while it can be used to effect positive change it still remains a broken system…”

              I disagree that the “system” is broken. I believe it is working exactly as it is designed to work — to grant legitimacy to that mindless abstraction called “the state”. Read this:

              http://www.lewrockwell.com/calderwood/calderwood35.1.html

              My friend, Mark, stated it best thus:

              When you go
              into the voting booth,
              the only meaningful significance
              that your action will have
              is to show that one more person
              supports the state.

              ~Mark Davis

              From Be Free, by Mark Davis July 10, 2005.

              http://www.strike-the-root.com/52/davis_m/davis1.html

              Sam

              • Michael HendricksNo Gravatar says:

                “I believe it is working exactly as it is designed to work” Fair enough, it’s broken for our perspective.

                “My friend, Mark, stated it best thus:”

                When you live on a tax farm paying taxes all your action does is show that one more person supports the State. It’s a non argument you support the State in some ways because other wise they’ll kill you, and you avoid supporting where you can.

                The voting booth is no different. Sometimes there are things that should be supported or opposed and most of the time it’s shit that doesn’t matter.

              • not youNo Gravatar says:

                Strike the Root. good site

                I approve

  5. BrodieNo Gravatar says:

    Voting is only violence if voting actually endows others with the right to rule. So I have to conclude that you think voting endows others with the right to rule. Otherwise you shouldn’t care if people vote, since it is not actually endowing anyone with a right to rule.

    • Danilo CuellarNo Gravatar says:

      If we are discussing voting for “public office”, which this article does refer to, then yes, every time you vote you are endowing others with the right to rule. Other types of voting, such as noted above when voting for non-government entities, are a separate discussion. Do you think voting in public elections endows others with the right to rule?

      • BrodieNo Gravatar says:

        “Do you think voting in public elections endows others with the right to rule?” No

        So you think I have a right to elect someone to rule over me and my neighbors against their will?

        • Danilo CuellarNo Gravatar says:

          I think we are misunderstanding each other. I believe we are in agreement. I now understand your initial comment to mean “Voting does not endow the voter with the right to rule.” This is true. However through the magic of the voting process we allot rights to our rulers that we did previously possess which is not possible in a sane world. This is a logical impossibility. Your second comment substantiates my article. I think we agree. 🙂

  6. HReardenNo Gravatar says:

    I understand the author to have referred to voting in state election. Every time one makes a decision or choice they are voting. When you have a choice to buy brand X or brand Y and you buy X you voted for X.

  7. DavidNo Gravatar says:

    I might add that not only is voting an act of violence but it is also an act of cowardice. Most people wouldn’t dare attack and rob someone else. They have no problem however with asking (voting) to have others do it for them. Also, it may be legally acceptable to consent to give away my own rights but it is not morally acceptable to vote to take away the rights of others.

    • HReardenNo Gravatar says:

      If a candidate if elected would not rob anyone and would vote against any new laws,
      voting for that candidate would not be supporting violence.

      • DavidNo Gravatar says:

        Can you point me in the direction of one single candidate that would not in some way, shape or form support violence against another person? Show me that person and I’ll consider your argument. A candidate would have to be committed to and have the power to repeal nearly every law on the books because most laws or designed to exact violence against people economically or physically.

        • BrodieNo Gravatar says:

          So you think winning a popularity contest gives people the right to rule over other people?

        • HReardenNo Gravatar says:

          I did not state repeal of laws. I mentioned not voting for new laws. I believe that Dr. Ron Paul of course was
          about as good a liberty minded elected official as there as been. I have no regret in voting for Dr. Paul in the
          primary in my state in January of 2012. That is in fact the last time I have voted and could very well be
          the last time I vote for a candidate.

          • DavidNo Gravatar says:

            Ron Paul, while seemingly a decent man, still wanted to be president. Personally I think anyone, Paul included, who seeks to govern over others is psychologically flawed to at least some degree. If someone thinks they should or are capable of governing 320 million people then they are a narcissist or psychopath.

            • not youNo Gravatar says:

              I agree with your post.

              The Pauls are as bad as any Statist.

              • HReardenNo Gravatar says:

                How is Ron Paul as bad as any statist? Ron Paul believes in non-intervention and sound money. I suggest that you watch the debates that Ron Paul was in with the other candidates. You can watch them on You Tube. Actually listen to how Ron Paul differed from the statist candidates that were on stage with him in those debates.

                • not youNo Gravatar says:

                  He is a fraud (a politician lies? who woulda thunk it), his actions belie his rhetoric.

                  He brought tons of debt bought pork to “his” district. Amazingly enough while never “voting” for any of it and sometimes even voting against them! He accomplished this by slipping his pork (theft) into bills (great name for them) that are assured of passing without his vote.

                  Pretty slick, eh?

                  • Sam SpadeNo Gravatar says:

                    “not you”:

                    “…Pretty slick, eh?…”

                    The nature of central political “authority” is “pretty slick”. If you engage in monopoly “government”, you’d better not claim immunity at being “slick”. It’s the name of the game.

                    Obfuscation clothes politics.

                    Sam

                    • not youNo Gravatar says:

                      Its nothing personal, was only pointing out the fact of the matter.

                      Paul is not the saint his followers believe him to be.

                      At the end of the day, he and his son are politicians, same as the rest of them.

                  • HReardenNo Gravatar says:

                    If he did not vote for it, he did not bring it to his district. He is not a fraud.

            • HReardenNo Gravatar says:

              I agree that if someone thinks they can govern 320 million people they are perhaps a narcissist. I don’t believe that Ron Paul believes that he can. George Washington did not want to be the POTUS btw. Ron Paul did not want to be the POTUS because he believed he should govern 320 million people. Check your premise on that assumption.

            • Sam SpadeNo Gravatar says:

              Having met Dr & Mrs Paul & some of the family on two occasions (my kids are/were active and avid Pauliens), I’m convinced Ron Paul knew he could never “win” the republicrat nomination. Non-psychopaths are always edged away in caucus/convention distractions long prior to being propped up to be voted upon in bread-and-circus offerings called “elections”. Dr Paul is too brilliant a man not to be savvy to that. Watch ten minutes of any of the videos where he was allowed to confront “candidates” as an equal in presidential debates and you’ll grasp that also — if your stomach can tolerate ten minutes of political mickey-mousing.

              And I do not believe he ever had any intention of “serving” as grand wizard of the Klan. He would never have tread on that shaky ground, in spite of his martyrdom in making the “run”.

              Ron Paul accomplished exactly what he set out to achieve. He gave rise to the “tea party” (which was promptly and predictably co-opted by various political factions). He opened the eyes of many educated and intelligent young people — quite a few of whom, I suspect, are reading this thread right here, right now. He made a giant leap in weakening the legs of the beast.

              For that he is to be admired.

              I supported my children and grandchildren by doing “grandpa duty” while they were busily and excitedly campaigning around the continent. But I did not vote in any of the polls, and I would never have registered or voted in a political election.

              Sam

              Sam

  8. not youNo Gravatar says:

    Spooner covered this back in the 1860-70s. In his essays “The Constitution of No Authority”

  9. Janos SzaboNo Gravatar says:

    Voting’s anti-social when it’s solicited to establish or gain control of some legal fiction (“The City of…”, “The State of…”, etc.) concoted to depersonalize the crimes of the administrators and their gunmen as “legislation”, “ordinance enforcement”, “zoning enforcement”, “taxation”, etc.

  10. afterzirNo Gravatar says:

    I did my senior capstone on arrow’s impossibility theorem (which basically says that voting is imperfect), and now I realize that it is d.o.a (dead on arrival) because voting is anti-intellectual (it’s basically hand counting), so it can’t solve intellectual matters.