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The State’s Unique Monopoly

June 18th, 2008

The other night, I started thinking about Government. Correct me, if I’m wrong, but isn’t Government pretty much the only organization which claims an absolute geographical monopoly? Hell, some of their people even admit as much. (Government-granted and enforced monopolies, in e.g., Telecommunications, notwithstanding.)

Some people might argue that geographical monopoly may arise naturally from the scarcity of some natural resources. Sure, there are only certain areas in the world which have bauxite deposits, or oil deep below the surface. But what is unique to Government is that the geographical monopoly is without substitute. The land below which bauxite or oil might be found can be owned and monopolized by an individual or a group of individuals acting in concert, but the consumers can always exercise another preference, purchasing alternatives or foregoing that consumption altogether.

Even natural monopolies, so-called, are subjected to the forces of market competition.

If you don’t like the “services” provided by your government, you can’t just forgo those in favor of another. You can’t purchase the services or substitutes thereto, from a competitor. You can’t buy allodial title to the land in question and free yourselves from those shackles, where at least in theory you could buy all or part of the land and/or oil/mineral rights to a naturally occurring monopoly.  Wherever there is governement, there is a gun in the background, pointed at you.

As Stef often says,

The issue is not whether [a particular government program is] good or bad, but rather whether I am allowed to disagree with you without getting shot.

Choice is only ever possible in the absence of violence, and violence is the State’s modus operandus.

no third solution

Blogging about liberty, anarchy, economics and politics