Saturday, August 20, 2016

The Single Best Argument against Anarcho-Capitalism

The anarcho-capitalism system proposed by Murray Rothbard requires the abolition of government and the privatisation of all property and every service in society.

For example, the anarcho-capitalism system abolishes the state and all state-based criminal law, and there would no longer be any criminal laws at all (see here and here).

Under anarcho-capitalism, property rights become almost absolute, except for when someone may sue in private civil litigation under a system of private torts.

Apart from that limitation, there is complete freedom of capital to produce, manufacture and sell anything to anybody, under free and voluntary contracts.

So what is the single best argument against such a system?

It seems fairly straightforward: with no government regulations whatsoever on the production and sale of not only guns, but also advanced military weapons, chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons, it follows that anybody at all wealthy enough, any lunatic or religious fanatic with enough money, can freely go and freely buy weapons of mass destruction, without anyone stopping them, in a Rothbardian anarcho-capitalist world.

In other words, capitalists are free to sell weapons which could then be used to pretty much destroy the earth and human civilisation.

Just look at the Middle East today, and imagine how it would work in the modern world.

Anarcho-capitalism = sheer f*cking insanity.

But, then, when you are an anarcho-capitalism lunatic, I expect global nuclear holocaust is a lesser evil than violation of private property rights.

Nice one, Murray.


  1. Bob Murphy has a counter argument. Good people will frown.

    No, I am not kidding. That really is his argument: social pressure from the good people, who will not otherwise interfere.

    1. I find it funny when a-caps talk about brining back like things mercenaries, gold backed currencies, and ostracism but then tell us how their ideology isn't neofeudalism.

  2. A soft lifetime academic like Rothbard would be eaten alive under his own system.

  3. For anybody who wants more than Ken B.'s completely sympathetic paraphrase of my views, read the "Gun Control" section here, starting at page 35.

    1. Thanks. Best laugh I've had all day & it's only noon~! ;-)

    2. See? I gave Bob's *best* argument.

  4. Bob

    insurance companies? are you kidding me

    what will stop from lets say someone very cranky and super rich a billioner and religious fanatic to buy his right to get bazukas or nuclear weapons?

    maximum he can pay that insurance company enough to agree for that.

    now you will speak about private court well in this case i will tell to the people good luck with that because most likely this super rich cranky person will choose to deploy his nuclear weapons in a place where the people will not have enough money for a good laywer to sue him the same goes to your voluntary regulation companies (its remind me of all this credit agnencies which was bribed by the banks to put +AAA rating on their debts).

    not to mention that this courts and corporations can be bought as well.

    (if you are speaking about free market will prevent corporations to exploit the people well tell it to feudal lords in england which theoritcally also gave to its people the right to choose another lord and how its worked?)

    so if people like looking at the government as a form of tyranny think about that at leaest this tyranny is accountable (until some extent) for its actions not to some rich shareholders but to the citizens of the country they represent a point of thought.

    so bob pls give me a break becuase its really goes to a crazy places.

    1. I'm having a good belly-laugh reading it:

      Recall that the penalties for injury and murder would be established by contractual pledges, underwritten by insurance companies. People allow Joe Smith onto their property because they know if he hurts someone, either he will directly pay the damages or his insurance company will. The insurance company makes its money by charging appropriate premiums, tailored to the individual client. If Joe Smith has been deemed guilty in the past of violent behavior, his insurance premiums will be accordingly higher

      The only reason insurance companies are able to have any force of coercion AT ALL is because of governments. Now there's something to get yourself all pissy concerning the "coercive power of the state."

  5. Follow Murrays advice and everything will be fine: respect the NAP!

    what could possibly go wrong?

  6. "Critics often dismiss private law by alleging that disputes between enforcement agencies would lead to combat—even though this happens between governments all the time! In truth, the incentives for peaceful resolution of disputes would be far greater in market anarchy than the present system. Combat is very expensive, and private companies take much better care of their assets than government offcials take care of their subjects’ lives and property"


    What would emerge is feudalism, or wealthy entities buying their own armies. I've yet to see such groups or individuals give two fucks about their "assets" when it comes time to protecting their own "ass-ets" lololol!

    When you hire someone to shed blood on your behalf, it's understood that their blood might well get shed also. That's just the way armed conflict works.

  7. Do you remember the asteroid debate?