Hoppean.org

Political ideologies are most often understood by the average person naively as ideologies which direct the actions of the State. They are simply viewed as differing opinions about what the State can and should do to achieve desired ends. Some ideologies have entirely different ends in sight (say, left-liberals and conservatives) while others differ mostly on strategy (such as Stalinists and democratic socialists). However, political ideology is much deeper and covers much more broad territory than simply opinions about what the State should do. It asks even more fundamental questions, such as whether the State is a legitimate institution in the first place. A whole class of ideologies which would call themselves “anarchist” argue that the State is not a legitimate institution at all. Often, the strongest pushback to anarchists comes from those who would style themselves as authoritarians, believing in a strong and sometimes even absolute State. All in all, however, most of these ideologies are not holistic. They do not lay out a vision for the whole of society, rather, they deal primarily or solely with what are considered to be purely political institutions. Some ideologies, such as Marxism, do make statements about other spheres of society (i.e. by advocating the abolition of the family). However, they most often still do not lay out a complete and holistic social organization theory.

Libertarianism is an ideology whose definition is often disagreed upon. All or most self-identified libertarians would say they advocate for maximal freedom from the State; however, this allows for much ambiguity. Many see this as implying that the most important thing we can do to further the cause of liberty is to advocate the legalization (and even normalization) of degenerate behavior such as smoking marijuana or advocating that the State recognize the legitimacy of homosexual “marriages.” More intelligent libertarians are familiar with and friendly to the likes of Murray Rothbard and believe that libertarianism is defined by the non-aggression principle - that is, that all aggression against person and property is illegitimate and can be repelled with force. However, the most refined libertarians understand that the non-aggression principle makes no sense without a proper understanding of private property rights, and that libertarianism is, in fact, defined purely in terms of private property rights (which would be the proper understanding of Rothbard’s position) - you might say that libertarianism proper could be defined as private property absolutism.

However, libertarianism, as intellectually developed and fine-tuned as it is, is insufficient. It is a tragically thin ideology whose conclusions are merely legal principles regarding the use of force. It makes no effort to lay out a vision for a healthy social order beyond saying that people shouldn’t steal, murder, rape, or otherwise violate the consent of others. However, there are those who call themselves “paleolibertarians” - libertarians who have socially conservative values, especially regarding national borders and cultural homogeneity. Libertarians tend to misunderstand paleolibertarians, believing that some of the paleos’ opinions are at odds with libertarianism itself (and, even more confusingly, they often have different reasons for believing this). Paleolibertarianism fills in some of the gaps existing in libertarianism; however, it is still a broad enough category to include such opponents of ours as minarchists, who often advocate in favor of the existence of the (centralized) United States Federal Government.

A holistic ideology is needed. An ideology which can set out a vision for a healthy society, beginning with vague legal principles and extending into the details of the social structure. I propose “anarcho-authoritarianism,” intentionally named as a seeming contradiction. Is it anarchist? Yes and no. Is it authoritarian? Yes and no. Both words, “anarchism” and “authoritarianism” are broad, and so I will narrow down my definitions. Anarchism means “no rulers,” and is typically construed as being an anti-authority class of ideologies. However, it is not inherently anti-authority, depending on how one defines “rulers.” I define “rulers” in this context as the word archon would indicate that I should - as those who hold public office in an imposed State. So in that sense, I am against rulers. However, I am not against structures of social and civil authority. In fact, I believe that abolishing the State (understood as a territorial monopoly on the use of force) is an important step in increasing the prevalence of beneficial social and civil authority. It is in this way that I am an authoritarian - I believe firmly in authority structures. However, I do not simply believe in the per se legitimacy of a supposed authority structure simply because it asserts itself to be one. It is because of this that I can simultaneously be, in some sense, authoritarian, and yet be opposed to the very institution of the State. I am nearly sure that nobody, at this point, has any clue what I am on about being “authoritarian” and “anarchist” in some sense of both words but not all senses of both words. As such, I will “build” this ideology from the ground up, beginning with a few first principles and developing from there.

From Anarcho-Capitalism to Anarcho-Authoritarianism

To begin with, I acknowledge the validity of Rothbardian political individualism. I acknowledge the inviolable individual right to property ownership. Focusing solely on this principle leads many to realize the evils of the war on drugs, of aggressive wars abroad, of State police, etc. and rightfully so. These State-enacted misadventures create victims where there are none to begin with, or further victimize suffering people. However, it is often here where libertarians stop. They become so concerned with these State-created social ills that they ignore the problems that spurred on the creation of government programs in the first place. For example, libertarians will often rage about ending the drug war, though when you point out that ending the drug war may lead to a rise in drug usage, they will not often see that as a problem, or if they do, they will simply reject your claim. This, to me, is a serious problem. Simply because the drug war is a moral atrocity does not mean that drug usage isn’t a legitimate problem. Libertarians are so hung up on their atomism that they don’t know how to address the ways in which drugs can rend the social fabric, such as if a parent has a drug addiction and neglects or abuses his children because of it.

So then we introduce the next phase of “ideological construction” — Hoppeanism. Hans-Hermann Hoppe has explained how it is that libertarianism is not an anti-social ideology, but in fact, that the basis of libertarianism (i.e. property rights) is fertile soil for a rich social organization theory. His proposal? Covenant communities. What are these? They may be towns or villages in and of themselves, or they may be districts within larger cities. Either way, they are communities formed by groups of people owning contiguous plots of property. They agree to a “covenant,” or a contract detailing conditions for living within the community. Failure to comply by these conditions may result in removal from the community or other consequences agreed to in the contract. Finally, we may have the beginnings of the solution to the aforementioned drug problem. Communities may simply include rules in their covenants prohibiting drug use. So we are no longer unjustly jailing drug users, though at the same time, drug use does not come without consequences (even beyond natural consequences).

Still, Hoppeanism is agnostic to the structure within the covenant community. We must understand that a holistic socio-political theory cannot end with the property-based covenant community. It must speak to hierarchy within the community. It must understand the role of the family in society, and how a healthy society will often find blurred lines between the familial, civil, and religious spheres. This is what anarcho-authoritarianism seeks to do - to build upon Hoppeanism, bringing it from a purely political ideology into a robust socio-political theory.

A Brief Socio-Political Analysis

Our society is deeply ill. Almost no American would necessarily disagree with this statement. Progressives, socialists, and communists believe that capitalism is society’s sickness. Conservatives and reactionaries believe that leftism is society’s sickness. Finally, libertarians believe the State itself is society’s sickness. The anarcho-authoritarian believes that both the reactionaries and the libertarians are correct - leftism and the State are both diseases causing the decay of society. In some ways, they are tied to each other, as our ruling elites are indeed mostly leftists to some degree, including most Republicans. However, there are issues which are purely due to statism and are independent of the left-right paradigm, and issues which are purely due to leftism and are largely independent of the State.

One of the most often overshadowed, but supremely important, issues in modern political discourse is centralization. The United States Federal Government is indeed a very centralized State. This is evident most obviously by the very fact that nearly everyone is most concerned about federal elections, and not as much about state and local elections. What does this indicate other than that federal elections are the most consequential elections? Indeed they are, and this is evidence of aforementioned centralization. One can further observe centralization by recognizing the startling amount of large federal agencies which have immense power, especially the NSA, the DEA, the DHS, the ATF, the CIA, the FBI, and countless others which serve as tyrannical tentacles of the Leviathan that is the United States Federal Government. An issue related to centralization but worthy of its own “shout-out” is the mass infringement upon rights in various forms: mass invasion of privacy by some of the previously mentioned “alphabet agencies,” bureaucratic regulations on businesses, requiring licenses to use one’s own private property, burdensome taxes, and compulsory, State-regulated education.

Central banking is also a significant aspect of the modern socio-political situation in the United States. It is one of the means by which the elites can fund their tyrannical and wicked endeavors, especially as regards the unjust wars being conducted abroad. It is also the means by which a small number of individuals can manipulate the currency and send false signals to the economy by artificially lowering interest rates. It encourages (though, of course, is not solely responsible for) high time preference, leading to the proliferation of degenerate behavior and unpreparedness for the future among the general population.

Perhaps the greatest sticking point, one that nearly all self-identified libertarians can agree upon, is aggressive war. All of the United State’s foreign wars are unjust, aggressive wars. Often, they are justified in the name of spreading “liberal democracy,” which is not a good thing in the first place, but is placed on a pedestal by the population at large in the modern world. In other situations, such as in the case of the Iraq War, they are justified by bogus claims and absurd lies by government officials. They are nothing more than conflicts aimed at helping the ruling elites in America to extend their illegitimate authority and influence into the Middle East - and make a profit. In doing so, they functionally make American troops into mercenaries for foreign governments and corporations at the expense of American taxpayers.

One issue, often not at all considered by libertarians but of concern to nearly all who fall on the right, is social degeneration and secularization. The shameless promotion of abortion and homosexuality in society are two of the most destructive forces eroding the moral integrity of the nation. Multiculturalism is another such destructive force - by having multiple cultures that must attempt to coexist within a single political unit, the soil is fertile for conflict and power struggles, as can be seen by the UK’s attempt to simultaneously accommodate radical leftist cultural movements and Islamic culture at once. Anti-discrimination laws, which violate the freedom of association (self-evident given the right of exclusion inherent in private property rights), prevent vendors and employers from disincentivizing degenerate behavior and force employers to employ people that may very well create conflict or instability in the workplace, or even people who are simply unqualified for the positions they desire. Perhaps the most pervasive poison to society is egalitarianism, the idea that all people are equal. Not merely in dignity or value in the eyes of God, our merciful Creator, but in most or all ways. We are all fundamentally the same. We must try to erase distinctions between people: race, sex, income, ability, etc. People are not all equal, and the delusion of egalitarianism is but a stumbling block to society and a myth that can lead to nothing but the abolition of civilization — intentional or not.

Another startling thing to recognize about the modern political situation is how private property is not treated as a fundamental social institution, even among those who style themselves as staunch opponents of communism. This is perhaps the greatest obstacle for the aspirations of the anarcho-authoritarian. Often, policies are judged on their consequences (assumed or supposedly calculated), with no regard as to whether or not they violate private property rights. Private property rights are seen as secondary to policy, for most people seem to believe that your property is only yours insofar as politicians say it is yours (including many conservatives, though they tend to be more resistant to attacks on private property). Politicians are supposedly granted the right to determine what is yours and what is not by simply declaring via legislation that a certain portion of your income, your house, etc. is not actually yours, but the State’s. Further, it is not even considered peculiar to refer to oneself as a “socialist” any longer, and society even dares tolerate that people would openly advocate communism and call themselves communists. Clearly, private property is not perceived as fundamental enough for the general public to condemn attacks against it. It is unthinkable, even to the most staunch conservative, that those who openly advocate the abolition of private property, even abolition by means of violent revolution, should be subject to legal repercussions! Given that private property is an institution necessary to a healthy society, the fact that it is so openly opposed and systematically undermined should be outrageous to any and all sane people.

Correcting the Socio-Political Situation

Given this litany of social ills, one must ask: what can be done? The sad reality is that, while many solutions are apparent and uncomplicated, they are unlikely to be implemented because they do not serve the interests of the wicked and debased elites. Nonetheless, the anarcho-authoritarian has answers for these.

To combat the evils of centralization, the anarcho-authoritarian agrees with the libertarian that decentralization via nullification and secession is a highly desirable strategy. It succeeds in increasing liberty and returning governance to local institutions with people who have more genuine care for their people and their communities rather than leaving it in the hands of morally dubious bureaucrats hundreds or even thousands of miles away, only to be abused and exercised for tyrannical purposes.

Central banking must be abolished and we must return to sound money. Preferably, we would also punish the sleazy schemers that are responsible for the destruction and erosion of our society through the scourge of central banking, but this is likely not a necessary step in correcting the havoc they have wrought upon society. It should be sufficient to simply put an end to all Federal Reserve monetary manipulation at once and merely allow the issues to correct themselves over time. The main issue caused by central banking will end as soon as the lingering effects of the Fed’s “bubble-blowing” subside.

The United States must also shut down all foreign military bases and bring every last troop home. The US Government has no business fiddling around in the Middle East, it has no business having a presence in Europe, and it has no business having a presence in Asia. The US military force is not a mercenary force for our “allies,” who in reality are tyrannical and/or otherwise criminal states and corporations. However, it is not merely for the sake of national interest and for the sake of the troops that the anarcho-authoritarian opposes these wars; there is a very poignant moral argument (which is equally if not more significant) against the senseless violence which the United States military has unleashed — and continues to unleash — against innocent civilians in various Middle Eastern countries in the name of “anti-terrorism.” It is always said “we fight them over there so we don’t have to fight them over here!” But this is as ridiculous, and as evil, as pre-emptively violently raiding a neighbor’s home and slaughtering his children because you suspect that he wishes to harm you. The simple, horrific reality is that the United States Government is responsible for the murder of thousands upon thousands of people. This illegitimate violence must end — every aspect of it strikes against the anarcho-authoritarian’s morals and goals.

The solution to leftism and secularization is complex by virtue of its multifaceted nature. One facet of the solution, a very basic but very necessary one, is to insistently promote heterosexual monogomy (ideally stigmatizing even heterosexual, monogamous sex if it occurs outside the bounds of marriage) and to, by whatever means necessary, abolish abortion. The anarcho-authoritarian cares not whether it is the State or the general population that somehow abolishes abortion, but simply cares that it is made to happen. In fact, he should rejoice if the State bans the practice! There is no reason that he has to fear simply because it is the State that puts the ban in place. As will be explained later, one of the prime concerns of the anarcho-authoritarian is praising instances of good governance, even if the overall governing institution is wicked and illegitimate (as he should believe the State is). A second facet to the solution is the reversal of society’s ever-darkening view of Christianity. Christianity must no longer be seen as legalistic, oppressive, and miserable; instead, it must be lifted up as the source of peace and prosperity in the earlier days of Western Civilization. It must be seen as a force for good, and instead of being seen as a long list of rules that must be followed at threat of being physically tortured forever, it must be seen as the only means to a proper and beautiful relationship with the loving Creator. Of course, this implies that atheism must be stamped out — though this is the unfulfilled role of the Church, not the State (or the civil authorities, more broadly speaking). The third facet of the solution demands that multiculturalism is combated with the advocacy of cultural homogeneity and assimilation. Immigration, if it is to occur at all, must occur only alongside cultural assimilation. What to do with those who already have immigrated but have not yet assimilated is not specifically defined, but the goal of whatever is done must be to correct this maladjusted state of affairs by assimilating them. The penultimate facet goes hand in hand with the previous one — restoring the right to free association. By abolishing all legislation that forces groups to associate with outsiders, incompatible groups can and will freely and voluntarily separate themselves from one another, making a step towards peace and prosperity. These groups may even engage in trade with one another at a distance, but simply, it is important that they are not forced to integrate with one another if they struggle to get along for some reason or another.

It is most absolutely necessary that respect for private property is instilled into the population. This respect must not be largely conditional and subject to the whims of politicians, that is, by means of teaching that private property is good except when politicians decide they should get a cut of what belongs to you. No! It is positively crucial that the right to private property is treated as absolute or at least very near it, treating property ownership as more authoritative than the decrees of politicians declaring that they have some right over the property of the general population. Policies that tax, confiscate, or regulate must be seen as attacks on private property and not as morally neutral, arbitrary, or otherwise insignificant. There is no debate as to whether this is an urgent priority — without an (at least nearly) absolutist view of private property, the anarcho-authoritarian’s basis for social organization, hierarchy, and legitimate authority falls apart entirely.

A Brief Note Regarding Legitimacy

What gives legitimacy to a supposed authority according to the anarcho-authoritarian? Well certainly, he does not believe that legitimacy is simply automatic or “magical.” Authority must arise from private property. Some people believe in concepts such as “consent of the governed,” but this language is unclear and can be used to justify steamrolling over a portion of the governed because a larger portion decided such a thing to be acceptable. Democracy is a disastrous form of governance. It is not right that all people should be given an equal voice in policy, and it is not even right that all people should be given an equal voice in who gets to determine policy. The masses are fickle and easily led astray. Those in “governing institutions” should be wise, qualified, and virtuous. Democracy (including the barely watered-down form of democracy known as a “constitutional republic”) does not lead to wise, qualified, and virtuous elites. It leads to conniving, mediocre, and vicious tyrants. This is simply because democracy offers an equal voice at the ballot box to all. And the masses, easily led astray as they are, are swayed by loud demagogues rather than quiet and wise civil servants. They flock to the bombastic, to the vicious, to the foolish, to the wheedling, to the economically illiterate, to those of high time preference, to the indulgent, and so on. They thrust their support behind dangerously idiotic leaders because they themselves are dangerously idiotic in matters of politics and society, though nobody is brave enough to tell them this (other than their political enemies, of course).

Thomas Jefferson stated that there is a natural aristocracy among men. This aristocracy includes the aforementioned wise, qualified, and virtuous elites — those whose rulership is suppressed by democracy. A natural order, that is, a property-based society, is the most fertile soil for the natural aristocracy to “float to the top.” Through the mechanisms of competition and inheritance, a truly qualified aristocracy will arise. The wise, qualified, and virtuous will find themselves in charge of much property, and through webs of mutual obligation not dissimilar to those observed in the feudalist system, a natural political structure will emerge. This extremely hierarchical and markedly non-egalitarian structure will be almost entirely, if not entirely, a system of private law, not monopolistic “public law.”

This is all well and good in the eyes of libertarians, so where does the “authoritarian” part come in? It already has been partially mentioned — the hierarchical structure previously mentioned, theoretically voluntary as it is, is indeed authoritarian as leftist anarchists argue it is. However, the authority all stems ultimately from private property. It emerges naturally. It is not imposed. Thus, the anarcho-authoritarian is not in the least fazed by this “accusation.” This is the key detail in any claim to legitimacy — organic emergence ultimately tracing back to private property. The anarcho-authoritarian must categorically reject any and all State absolutism. It is entirely against his conviction that any governing body, especially the State, would have the right to do as it pleases simply because it is a governing body. No, indeed, at the very least, one must recognize that the only justification for governing institutions lies in the concept that they exist to serve people. Outside of their (at least supposed) service to people, they are meaningless and without any real authority. Even Romans 13, often cited by Christian statists to justify the State, does not claim that governing institutions merely have authority to do whatever “just because,” but that they serve a specific purpose (and further, the idea that Romans 13 justifies the establishment of a monopoly on the legitimate use of force is reading statism into the text). That passage itself is not a work of political theory, however, and thus does not deal with issues of legitimacy and more such technical details.

Natural Politics

The “anarcho-authoritarian” designation is one implying a more robust description of social order beyond the Hoppean covenant community. While recognizing that Professor Hoppe himself is a socially conservative libertarian, it would be possible to conceive of a covenant community that defies natural social order, but is nonetheless “Hoppean.” However, no such covenant community could be understood as “anarcho-authoritarian” — this designation specifically denotes a social order that adheres to a natural, hierarchical structure. This hierarchical structure can be summarized from the bottom up: family, community, city (optional), nation, and international polity.

Families are the fundamental units of society. They are also the smallest political units, as there is a structure within them that lends itself to reasonable dispute resolution. The parents are diarchs over their children, and can resolve disputes between children. However, children being immature, unwise, and dependent, it is natural and legitimate for the “parental diarchy” to override the wishes of the children, even if what the child desires is perfectly within his own means to obtain or achieve. In the fullest and most natural expression of the family, that is, the extended family, there are normally elders above the parents of the children. The wisdom of elders regarding the things of the world gives them also the capability to serve as resolvers of disputes between younger members of the family, and in some cases, as patriarchs of the family who may serve as the final arbiter in some important family decisions and generally bear more respect than any other member of the family. A benefit of traditional family structure, especially in a communitarian/non-atomistic society, is that the career of the father is often passed down to his son. This practice creates a mostly continuous line of succession for the production of certain goods and services, from which local economic stability can be reasonably inferred to arise. This is an important way in which the family and the greater local community overlap, as a familial practice directly engages in economic activity in the context of the community.

The next higher level of social order is the local community. The local community consists of families within a discrete geographical region (such as a neighborhood, or in Hoppean theory, a covenant community). It may be a subset of a city, or it may stand on its own. In the former case, it is possible that all or most economic activity occurs not strictly within the bounds of the community, but rather within the network consisting of the other communities within the city. Otherwise, if the community stands alone as its own geographically distinct entity, then it is likely that much of the economic activity conducted by its residents will occur strictly within its bounds. In either case, the local community in a natural order is the prime locus of social activity. It is the unit of society which is most likely to enforce moral standards apart from aggressive acts, such as the confinement of sex within marriage, by means of ostracization. It is, generally speaking, a high-trust community (especially within the context of a Hoppean covenant community) and the prime unit of society in which to practice mutual aid as a form of financial assistance to those in “hard times.” In a more traditional society, it would likely be nearly synonymous with the local church community, though in most places in modern times, there no longer remains such a strong correlation between geographical location and the church one attends, particularly in larger cities with a myriad of different types of churches.

There is a layer of social order that exists in some places, but not all: the city. The city is an amalgamation of contiguous local communities. While the borders between these communities may not be strictly defined, it is apparent to observers that there are indeed multiple distinct local communities within the region. It is roughly correct to say that the family is to the local community what the local community is to the city — apart from this, there is naught else of importance to say regarding cities in the anarcho-authoritarian social order.

The highest self-contained level of social order is the nation. Many people, whether statist or libertarian, fail to understand that nation is a separate entity from the State. However, the nation is indeed separate from the State, and especially under a democratic State, is the subject of the State’s parasitism. What is a nation, then? It is not easy to strictly define, but it is most easily described as the set of all communities within a geographical region which share a common base culture. All communities have unique cultures, of course, but communities within a nation will at least share a language with each other and have aligning cultural norms. The nation is a significant unit of society, because within it, cultural trends sweep through quickly due to a common language and geographical proximity between subunits. Almost all people within the nation will remain within it nearly all of the time, but may sometimes leave for recreational or business purposes. Nonetheless, it is a singular, distinct entity marked by a largely homogeneous culture.

Beyond the nation, there are no political units. However, there could indeed be international polities. It is important to clarify, though, that these would be nothing like the centralized internationalist/globalist cabal that exists currently; rather, it would be a complex and decentralized network of bodies solely existing to foster (ideally friendly) relations between nations. They would have no real authority and would exist only in accordance with the will of the people of a nation to have relationships with other nations. If no such thing was desired, then there would be no reason to take issue with a nation fully isolating itself.

Strategy

So, then, who are the allies of the anarcho-authoritarian? It is sufficiently obvious that communists cannot be his allies; they are his worst enemies, opposing everything he holds dear. However, there are a couple groups that may seem to be his natural allies, as they share one thing or another in common with him. If it is not apparent by now, then I will not leave the reader to wonder: anarcho-authoritarianism is a hard-right libertarian ideology. Then, since the authoritarian leftists are clearly and entirely opposed to this system, that leaves the authoritarian right and the libertarian left to consider for practical alliance.

It is my opinion that the libertarian left, besides barely being libertarian, is not at all an ally. The libertarian left, by virtue of being leftist, is egalitarian. This alone is sufficient to entirely exclude them from being allies, as the whole point of the anarcho-authoritarian designation is to advocate for a natural, hierarchical society which necessarily excludes any sort of egalitarian attitude. As for the “libertarian” aspect of the libertarian left — it is not the same sort of libertarianism we adhere to. It may use some similar language, from time to time, such as “non-aggression principle” and “property,” however, these are not even meant in the same sense as the right-wing libertarian understands them. They are vaguely similar in that they may be used to condemn such things as the unjust wars of the US Government, but in the context of society here and now, they are different principles. Left-libertarians do not adhere to the same property norms as right-libertarians. They do not, for the most part, believe in unconditional property ownership as the right-libertarian does. Left-libertarians are anti-authority and would find the sort of hierarchy advocated earlier as reprehensible and to be opposed. Further, most left-libertarians are culturally leftist and advocate for a plethora of degenerate behaviors that would destroy the healthy traditionalist culture necessary for an anarcho-authoritarian society (or any other society, for that matter) to survive. There is simply no allying with the “libertarian left.”

The authoritarian right, on the other hand, I believe is redeemable. As stated earlier, there can be no tolerance for State absolutism. This is an infectious disease that plagues certain prominent sects of the authoritarian right, and short of convincing them against this ludicrous and naive understanding of the State, there is no hope for them. However, there are those on the authoritarian right who share many of values espoused by the anarcho-authoritarian, such as traditional social values, social hierarchy, and property rights. While they may err on certain issues (e.g. by believing marijuana should be criminalized, or by supporting the police when they are clearly in the wrong), they share a lot of the anarcho-authoritarian’s own beliefs.

The only things necessary to convince the typical authoritarian rightist of are the absolute importance of private property as the basis for determining what is a legitimate use of force and the viability of a stateless private legal order. Perhaps the most useful historical examples of societies that approximated a stateless legal order are feudalist Europe, Gaelic Ireland, and medieval Iceland. All three of these have a documented history of having stateless (or nearly stateless) periods with a stable legal order. By appealing to these societies, one can demonstrate that our ideal society, libertarian as it is, is not degenerate or anti-traditional in the least. There are many benefits to these historical examples, especially when appealing to Catholic Traditionalists (who are a significant sect of the authoritarian right). Many of these individuals tend to support centralized (even fascist) States, however, the history of Europe (especially during the feudal era) will demonstrate that centralization and fascism is nowhere near the traditional order they claim to advocate. No, in fact, these things are at odds with it! They are “modernist inventions”, as these traditionalists often say in their attempts to discredit ideas.

Murray Rothbard’s essay entitled “Right Wing Populism” is invaluable in the eyes of the anarcho-authoritarian. Its advocacy of a right-wing political program is an absolutely necessary component of the anarcho-authoritarian strategy, especially as regards reaching out to the right-wing at large. By pointing out how right-wing politics can be an aspect of the way to reaching a free society, there is a clear path to forging an alliance with the authoritarian right. Even if their goals diverge from our own, we do overlap significantly and if only they can be convinced to support radical decentralization, then our goals will align so closely so as to be nearly indistinguishable on all levels except local.

As might be indicated by the enthusiastic endorsement of “Right Wing Populism,” the anarcho-authoritarian does not shudder at the idea of the State doing such things as protecting private property. While he opposes its existence altogether, he recognizes that the State monopolizes such services at the time being, and opposition to the State’s provision of these services is foolishness, no matter how poor or selective its provision is. While he strives for a society with the private provision of these services, he understands that this is not a universally viable option, at least not yet. He is more than happy to undertake the protection of his own property, but understands that not everyone else may be prepared to so, and thus, until the importance of being able to protect one’s own property is widely accepted (as it currently is not), society is not prepared to throw off its parasitic oppressor, that is, the State. However, the anarcho-authoritarian makes no excuses for the State, is not ever eager to defend its agents, and sees the State as nothing but a vile parasite which usurps the natural aristocracy of the wise, qualified, and most importantly, virtuous. While it may seem odd that he is unafraid to use the State for certain ends, he is no more in favor of it than the poor citizen of the USSR, whose only source of food was the communistic State, was in favor of his tyrannical and wicked government.

Conclusion

Anarcho-authoritarianism is not a new ideology, it is merely a new designation for what many people already believe. It encompasses what many non-statists, such as paleolibertarians, localists, and anti-centralization traditionalists already believe. What is known as private property anarchism (market anarchism/anarcho-capitalism) is not a sufficient ideology, and authoritarianism is often vague and not based upon inviolable deontological principles. The latter dangerously lacks a disdain for and principled opposition to the State, while the former perilously neglects the importance of moral principles beyond merely opposing aggression against person and property. Anarcho-authoritarianism is a synthesis of these two, combining the good aspects of each. It finds common cause with many libertarians, but also with many on the non-libertarian hard right. However, as mentioned earlier, Rothbard’s “Right Wing Populism” resolves the seeming tension between the two by laying out a distinctly right-wing program for moving towards liberty. Anarcho-authoritarianism, unlike typical anarchism, is not afraid of “politics” and recognizes that even in a purely stateless private legal order, there would undoubtedly be politics simply due to the hierarchical structure of society. Anarcho-authoritarians are not at all hesitant to use the State as a tool if they can, as long as it is in the pursuit of legitimate ends, such as the protection of private property as an institution or the fragmentation of the State by its own hand. Anarcho-authoritarians are Hoppeans of some sort, but we are also something more… consider us post-Hoppeans.