I oppose the state because the state harms people. It kills them, injures them, kidnaps them, and steals their property. The state does not do these evil things rarely or as a last resort, but rather it does them continuously as they are its core function. The state exists primarily to perpetuate and protect itself.
When I examine a political or policy issue, my goal is simple—reduce the harm caused by the state. If a policy will reduce the number of people killed, injured, or kidnapped by the state, it's a good policy; if it increases these things, it's a bad policy. If a policy reduces the amount of property stolen from people or the number of people property is stolen from, it's a good policy; if it increases these things, it's a bad policy.
Policies which claim to make the state's theft more 'fair' hold little interest for me as stealing more property from some people and less from others is not a fundamental reduction in the harm inflicted by the state, but merely a rearrangement of the harm. Whenever a politician touts a policy as being "revenue-neutral," what he is really saying is that the policy represents a shift in state theft, not a reduction of it.
Policies designed to make the state 'more efficient' are likewise rarely meritorious as the state's actions are universally malevolent and more efficient malevolence is not in anyone's best interest. The state's inefficiency is actually one of its few positive elements which leave room for enterprising individuals to outmaneuver it.
I don't want the state to be 'fair' or 'efficient'; I want it to weaker and therefore less able to harm individuals. While I don't believe that the state can ever be sufficiently reformed to make it anything less than criminal, there are certain policy changes which can be implemented to reduce the harm the state inflicts on people. The following list is far from comprehensive and merely suggests a few of many possible policy changes which would have the effect of reducing the harm perpetrated against individuals by the state:
- Legalization and Decriminalization (ending prohibitions on victimless acts)
- Legalize / decriminalize marijuana and other drugs.
- Legalize / decriminalize gambling in all forms.
- Legalize / decriminalize all voluntary sexual encounters (i.e. prostitution.)
- Legalize / decriminalize the production and possession of all firearms.
- Presumption of Competency (a necessary corollary to the presumption of innocence)
- Eliminate occupational licenses.
- Eliminate driving licenses.
- Eliminate gun licenses.
- Justice Reform
- Reduce fines paid to the state. (If an action harms an individual, the victim should receive any restitution owed, never the state. If an action does not harm an individual, no fine should be imposed.)
- Repeal all status offenses (making an action a crime based solely on the actor's age.)
- Abolish the death penalty.
- Reduce the use of incarceration. (Replace with restitution to victims.)
- Property Rights
- Eliminate zoning ordinances.
- Eliminate sign codes and other such regulations.
- Eliminate building permits.
- Reduce building codes, mandated inspections, etc.
- Eliminate dog licenses.
- Repeal "intellectual property" laws which infringe on the use of personal property.
- Privacy Rights
- Terminate the NSA.
- Eliminate all cyber spying conducted by the state.
- Eliminate vehicle registration and license plate requirements.
- Eliminate requirements for individuals to have ID cards and numbers.
- Allow fully anonymous banking.
- Stop Stealing
- Reduce taxes and fees (with the goal being total elimination.)
- Eliminate welfare, food stamps, and other redistributive programs.
- Privatize education.
- Phase out Social Security.
- Privatize mail delivery.
- Foreign Policy
- Eliminate foreign aid.
- Close foreign military bases.
- Adopt a strict policy of non-intervention.
- Withdraw from the U.N.
- Free Trade and Free Travel
- Open the border in both directions (people can come and go as they please.)
- Repeal all laws prohibiting or restricting commerce across national borders.
- Eliminate all tariffs and quotas.
All of these ideas would serve to reduce the number of people killed, injured, kidnapped, or extorted by the state primarily be reducing the number of victimless actions which are currently prohibited by the state. Harming people for violating unnecessary laws and ordinances is one of the most egregious practices regularly engaged in by the state. The other ideas involve reducing state theft and moving from a vengeance-based 'justice' system to a restitution-based justice system.
The goal of any policy proposal should be to increase human liberty by reducing the obstacles that the state puts in the way of that liberty. Anything else is really a waste of time and resources. Look around you and see who the state is hurting and how they are hurting them; once you see it, work to change the situation. Humanity doesn't have to suffer under the yoke of an oppressive state. We can stop the killing, we can free the captives, and we can end the expropriation. With enough people awake and aware, we can end the state.