Can Any Law Be “Mandatory” Without the Threat of Violence — 52 Comments

  1. I absolutely, completely, totally agree with you. I tHink it is actually the only logical train of thought. You have stated it well.

  2. I agree with you there should be some laws that need to be on the books for the protection of society as a whole, but there are things that should be left open for the individual to decide. One that is of the latter is with the measles vaccine that is being discussed. Personally, I think that giving children the measles vaccine is a good thing as it will help with the health of the nation as a whole, but I can understand why some parents will not want their children to get it, because of personal views on religous grounds or that what is included in the shot they think may be more harmful than getting the shot. I don’t expect you to totally agree with me, but I hope you can understand my point. Thanks Doug Lass.

  3. At the end of the day it comes down to responsibility. We are all unwilling to own and control our lives so we met the more than willing sycophants who want power “keep us safe”. There can never be true freedom without true personal responsibility. I still believe security and roads can be taken care of via private means and contracts. I have seen it done in south america.

    • You really want private security instead of public security? Please research Blackwater and other private “security” firms before you make up your mind. Private security firms serve the highest bidder at a given time, without loyalty or allegiance, and only in the interest of stakeholders. Public security serves at the public’s pleasure and is accountable to that same public. That said, we are not adequately equipped to topple tyranny because we, as a public, have asked others to be responsible for us.

      • Many places in South America use localized private security. These guys don’t do law enforcement, but they help to keep a neighborhood safe by being “eyes and ears” full-time and by intervening and/or calling the police if there is an issue. They are hired by tenants in a building or a group of buildings. It’s not a bad thing – quite the opposite. It works quite well.

        I don’t think that a Blackwater-style security force would be good or even necessary. The militarization of the police in the US is bad enough!

        • That is very much the case in Panama. Many places have armed guards and you know what you think when you see one, you think good. Why. They don’t give a crap about “law” as it pertains to victimless crimes. It is simply not their business, they just don’t give a shit, but steal, rob, assault, etc. and they will flat shoot your ass.

          And you know what, criminals know it!

          I will tell you we never had an issue with a private security officer in Panama, the local police were another matter.

    • Ben, blackwater and the like, are not truly free market firms, as they make their money and profits being government contractors

      • While they do work for governments they also work for publically traded entities. They are also publically traded privately owned corporations and as such serve only stakeholders. What I am saying is that I trust a public servant more than a private profit driven entity. That is not to say public servants are not corruptible, that would be foolish. All that said, I only truly trust myself to look out for my own interests and safety, which is why I carry a .40 almost everywhere.

  4. Can laws be enacted as a gateway to a privilage, rather than with the threat of force for not obeying? If you vaccinate your child you can have the privilage of using a state licensed child care facilrfity while you work, or a public school for your children if you want. No harm no foul if you refuse, just no access to these privilages. Notice that in both cases there are non state sanctioned options for child care and educatio open to the parents. Would this be a law? In the vernacular of the day I think so. But I do not know of it fits the classical definition of a law.

    • In this case you would end up with a suggestion to get the vaccine and a Law that you cannot use some facility/service if you have not received the vaccine. You are back to the same situation, are you willing to use force at the point of a gun to keep people from using the facility/service?

    • Charles:

      Public education is not a privilege, we pay dearly for it via our tax dollars. If you refuse to pay those taxes because you are not utilizing those services, whether by personal choice or because you are blocked from them by refusing to comply with a mandate, you will then experience that same aforementioned violence at the point of a gun. It amounts to the same thing in my mind.

    • I agree with what all of you said here: Jack, Charles, Bob, and Lighthorse.

      Yes, every law we support should have the “threat of violence” test. There ARE some disease-transmission situations that justify that. I’m not talking about every childhood vaccine, but rather a hypothetical situation and even then should allow the person the choice to stay out of public exposure.

      I do agree that some facilities should require vaccines (meaning “should” as in if I were on the board I would want the local requirement).

      The fact that our dollars are stolen to pay for schools we do not want isn’t really relevant to the argument. Someone who chooses not to use the school because they don’t want to vaccinate surely should get their money back. But I also shouldn’t be paying taxes for schools, as they aren’t suitable for my children. Different argument.

  5. Very nicely put, Jack. This basic truism for the law (Mandatory = Violence) can never be pronounced too often.

    I like the head-piece/broadside you feature.

    Thank you Jack for clarifying so many “issues” here with one stark naked fact.

  6. Jack, I think you are absolutely correct. I also think it absolutely does not matter. We’re adrift in an ocean of human beings who think that the purpose of government is to make sure that they get everything they want, that no one believes or acts in any way contrary to their own beliefs and actions, and that there’s a chicken in every pot, etc etc. People want a strong daddy to tuck them in at night, to reassure them that nothing bad will ever happen to them, that the world is designed by them, for them. That’s the role that government has come to serve. When you look at the police motto, ‘to protect and serve’, well, they got the second part right. The State serves, all right. It serves friendly fascism… with a smile. And yes, in the future we will have mandatory vaccinations, and yes, we all have to face that decision on our own. Government corruption is like the concept of science fiction. Anything you can think of that government could do in an evil or dastardly way (for the greater good, of course), it will become reality… just a matter of time and degree.

    People often say that if our founding fathers saw the state of our country that they’d be rolling in their graves. I’m not so sure any more. I’m not sure they’d even recognize it. It’s amazing what we do to each other everyday in this country in the name of freedom. It makes me feel sick enough to consider taking a flu shot.

  7. I think the clamor for more laws grows out of a lack of a personal philosophy… a way to limit one’s own actions… so that people naturally make a religion out of other things… like money or secular government. When people are religious, they have taken on a set of laws that, for the most part, limit an individual’s actions, and encourage other actions, most of which are valuable to society as a whole.

    The point is that when G-d is watching, you don’t need as many policemen to watch… and fewer laws to limit people because they already have personal religious laws that limit them. And just like a vaccine, when a certain number of people self-limit, it influences those who are not self-limiting by teaching them proper behavior as if it is natural.

    The value of Christianity to the world is that they have made things that are unnatural to human beings seem natural and unquestionable such as being kind to the stranger. Helping the sick, the widow and the orphan. Loving your neighbor instead of swatting him over the head and taking all his stuff.

    Religion has its flaws so if you wish to use a secular philosophy such as “seek the good” then that can work, but only if you are naturally noble. There are such people. I think Penn Jillette is such a person.

    But there are few naturally noble people so the rest clamor for more secular laws. Since the secular religion has no omnipresent G-d to watch over them, they need more policemen to watch instead. This is why Alexis De Tocqueville praised the USA in “Democracy in America”. What took a company of soldiers to enforce in France was handled easily by the self-organized and self-limiting religious people of America.

    It is a matter of personal conscience. Like a vaccine, I cannot and should not impose a belief in G-d on others, but if they believe in G-d they contribute to society as a whole. And if enough people follow G-d’s laws then those who do not will be protected anyway… just like a vaccine.

  8. what about a system where if you don’t pay /abide by this law you don’t benifets with that one

  9. If they are used as a “gateway” for something like public schooling, education would then not be able to be considered a “right”. I don’t think it is in the first place, but since “rights” as a word seems to mean nothing anymore, it would certainly turn into quite the court battle.


  10. As always, well said, Jack. I love that you did not use any particular law because the issue here is to THINK. So many of our decisions are based on our emotions instead of logic and thought. While I may disagree with you on some things, I can say that reading and listening to your posts/podcasts have encourage me to think.

  11. I have made this exact argument about 10 times over the last week due to the hysteria around measels and each time I come up against people who disagree. My true fear is that people have become so dilusional that they cannot accept basic facts.

  12. There is no disputing your argument, Jack. But there will never be a lasting anarchy or minarchy form of government. The mere thought of such a society is a contradiction. So all that I can say to those in power and to the choir is: Payback’s bitch, prep accordingly. If the history of humanity was a film it would be a sequence of this one frame alone: Violence, peace, peace, peace, peace, Violence… next frame.

    • Okay not the point and even though you have no idea what minanarchy or anarchy actually are and what the point is, I shall let it pass.

      The point is, in our current system, all laws are the threat of violence at the point of a gun, when you ask for a law that is what you ask for. I wonder how many laws would be repealed if we simply taught that FACT to our children. Your argument is since what you can’t understand, won’t work in your mind, it is a free pass to abuse rights and liberties under the cloak of the legitimacy of law.

    • You understand very well what I’m saying. That time when people addressed their grievances among each other without the need for a law to delineate every aspect of society is from a time past. You will not see it again until the next reset, and then the build-up will start again.

      I hope I’m wrong but it’s not until that barrel starts pressing a little too hard against your head that people react.

      • That isn’t a law, it is a voluntary system. So are you about to cross the line and come over to the light side?

      • I think they covered that very point in the third Matrix movie. No matter how much you think you are going to ‘fix’ this world, it will just start over again and again and again.

        That is really the reason why it is pointless to talk about any of it from pure communism to anarchy. It is all trivial under the sun. I am going to go enjoy my kids now…

        • When someone points out what is reality, you can accept it and not try to change it. Or you can use that reality when you deal with it. Again law is an implied threat of violence for non compliance with out such, it isn’t a law.

  13. Jack all your points are spot on. I know of one set of laws on the books that are not and cannot be enforced. The US Flag Code. this code outlines how when and where the United States flag shall be displayed. This code if violated by so many it is ridiculous, even governmental bodies violate the flag code.

    Nothing is done simply because the code has no mechanism for enforcement (example: no fines or imprisonments) therefore the code is un-enforceable. That is why it is not enforced and you never hear of anyone being arrested for improper flag usage.

    As you say really be careful and think through things when you say there should be a law.

  14. When I was in the navy there was a qualification that takes at least a year to get that I was working toward. It was voluntary and worth points toward advancement. About halfway through they declared that it was now mandatory and gave a list of consequences for failing to comply with the mandate. I had made advanced last cycle and would not be eligble for further advancement before I got out, so I told my chief that I could live with those consequences. He then told me that I would comply and that there would be continuing additional consequences until I chose to comply. Not quite a gun, but pretty much a gun anyway.

    • Sort of but that was a contract you entered into on your own free will. Of course like the mafia the people with the power changed the rules mid stream.

  15. There are many ways to enforce laws, your allusion to armed men doing it full of poop. Nor does does it always mean enforcement by force. Mandatory education in any form is not enforced by force or armed violence. Who would refuse a polio shot for the kids or preventing a small pox out break…..or Ebola.

    You have been in this survival arena too long. Go get a real look at life in american society.

    • So tell me exactly how you are going to enforce a law, without the threat of violence if I refuse to comply with it. Go ahead, I am waiting. Give me an example, just one.

    • @The Nite Owl, putting it another way would you publicly debate me on this use under the internationally recognized rules of debate with an impartial third party moderator of the debate to be approved by both of us?

    • Nite Owl, what happens if I refuse to comply with your non-violent enforcement?

      Mandatory education is 100% enforced by force. If I don’t put my hypothetical kids in school, and refuse to comply long enough, CPS takes them away. If I refuse to let them, police show up. Police are people with guns.

      The only way you can make somebody do something they don’t want is through force. I think you missed the part where Jack breaks down how non-compliance with non-violent enforcement, like fines, eventually leads to violent force. Refuse to pay a traffic ticket long enough and see what happens.

      Can you give an example of a way you could enforce a law wwithout eventually needing to fall back on physical violence?

  16. Fascinating. “One” other question. I’ll use scenario to hopefully make my point clearer… Although I think I still have 4 questions. Say a peson believes that a human being is any genetically identifiable member of our species, even those that are unborn, and is prepared to use a gun to protect the life of all individuals they consider human? Would this be an acceptable place for a law? If there was a difference of opinion within the society (as there is on abortion) then who decides which side of the argument gets to use the gun to protect their position? The people? The state? What if people who disagree that humanity is defined by genetics are not willing to use a gun on the people who believe that it is? Would there be no place for law?

  17. With out the threat of violence what laws are followed. Codes which have no punishment are not followed but by willing people.
    Simple laws in city ordance are a waste. The violations such as solicitations laws which have no prosecution are simply ignored. Why because the man with a gun (law enforcement) knows he can not do anything.

  18. Spot on Jack.

    “Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws.” – Plato

    • I am sorry, I find this humorous, this all has the feel of a very bad high school classical philosophy class. This is old territory: Hobbs, Rousseau, Aurelius, Hume, and on and on and on. The entire social contract and our responsibilities to each other or lack thereof has been covered by much better minds that had real problems compared to our high-minded western lives of luxury. And that isn’t romanticizing the present; human life was considered pretty trivial back in the day.

      To give you an example or two: Crassus crucified 6,000 people that were merely followers of Spartacus on the roads leading to Rome, what type of message does that send to anybody traveling down that road?!?

      There is a reason why they called it The Terror during the French Revolution. The mob (which generally represents the lowest common denominator of what the real nature of humans are) wanted what was promised, and no human life was really worth sparing until they got it (or at least until people felt convicted by the better angels of our nature as one great orator would put it).

      Today’s society hardly ‘puts a gun to your head’.

      You can point to bigger numbers and more brutal governments/leaders/ideologues in more recent history, but that is not the point. The point is merely that human nature is pretty ugly, our respect for the next person’s life has a pretty low track record when it comes down to brass tacks, and if you do want to live in some type of ‘society’ you better get over yourself.

      Shelby Foote said it best, the main attribute that made the United States so unique was our ability to compromise, and when that stopped working war broke out.

      • @Scott, you have actually offer zero counter argument. I’d be happy to debate this topic in an organized debate following the rules there of with a non partial moderator if you like.

        The fact that the gun of today is more sophisticated then the sword of yesterday makes it no less intimidating when it is pointed at you!

        You don’t think threatening “anti vaxer parents” with CPS is the threat of violence at the point of a gun? If so you are in a word delusional.

        The questions with all laws are not if or if not they imply the threat of violence for non compliance, it is with each law, are you okay with it?

        Again your words offer no counter argument, no proof that what I contend isn’t true. I think the main reason people object to the fact that duh, laws are enFORCED with FORCE is what it means when you accept it.

  19. Jack, I’ll join the choir by saying thanks and good work on this. Clear and respectful in tone. This is the kind of reasoning that I pray becomes more prevalent for my childrens’ future.

    • Common attempt to counter the argument, what about when I don’t pay the fine, what then? In the end there is always a boot, a tazer, a gun, OC Spray, a club and a cage to force compliance.

      • John Rhoades, to phrase it another way: why do people pay the fine? They pay the fine because if they don’t the consequences will increase. Ultimately, the consequence is to drag you off to jail. Refusing that arrest will bring on the violence. That’s how everything is enforced: by the threat of violence.

  20. Jack, I’m missing something here. If a school has 500 students and they are all vaccinated except 3, where is the harm? Only 3 students are in danger, the 3 un-vaccinated students! That is – if the vaccine is effective. If it isn’t effective, the problem isn’t the 3 students, it is the vaccine manufacturer! The three students are a danger to each other only. The manufacturer is a danger to everyone. The parents of the 3 students accept the responsibility for the 3 students. The vaccine manufacturer has a responsibility for the other 497 students. And then you get into civil and criminal areas of responsibility. And who holds the gun to the manufacturers head?

    • @Ralph, you’d think it was that simple but what the vaccination Nazis fall back on are two things. One somewhat legitimate and the other really weak ass bullshit that acknowledges vaccines don’t work as well as advertised.

      1. Danger to those who legitimately can’t be vaccinated. This is sorta, kinda, legitimate.

      2. Herd Immunity – yes we are referred to as a heard. Basically this states that since the vaccines do not work as well as they claim, you have to vaccinate everyone. Seriously, no shit, this is what herd immunity is all about.