The first attitude toward the state that I want to examine was best expressed in a talk by David Friedman in which he assured the audience there was an Italian saying that translated into something like “It is raining again…PIG OF A GOVERNMENT!”
I remember wincing in my seat because I had a sudden vision of myself, standing in an open street, with my fist raised in fury at the political injustice of the drizzle hitting my face. The meaning of the saying, of course, is that many people blame everything on government. This hit too close to home. I was spending so much time railing against the State that I was running the risk of defining myself by what I oppose. I was taking the state inside myself and allowing it to filter my approach to life and determine many of my emotional reactions.
On the other hand, I aggressively try to expand the areas of my life about which I can say “Here there is no state.” These are areas like my home, family, friends, my community, writing, working…these are areas where the government does not define or in most cases even affect what I do or how I feel.
The attitude “here, there is no State” is who I am in relationship to Society as I go about the business of living. It involves a commitment. As much as possible I don’t use the services or so-called ‘benefits’ the government offers but seek private means instead. I explore alternative currencies and means of exchange like barter. I join networks of individuals who cooperate together for mutual benefits. In short, I am taking my life back from the state and privatizing it.