Values File

The no capitalist system implies the no government

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Unformatted text preview: he all-pervading interference of the State. The no-capitalist system implies the no-government system." SLHS Value File Anarchy: A2 "State Has Bigger Guns" State guns are always better, but if it has lost a critical mass of support guns won't save it Hannah Arendt, Philosopher, ON VIOLENCE, 1969, p. 46-47 Since in foreign relations as well as domestic affairs violence appears as a last resort to keep the power structure intact against individual challengers--the foreign enemy, the native criminal --it looks indeed as though violence were the prerequisite of power and power nothing but a facade, the velvet glove which either conceals the iron hand or will turn out to belong to a paper tiger. On closer inspection, though, this notion loses much of its plausibility. For our purpose, the gap between theory and reality is perhaps best illustrated by the phenomenon of revolution. Since the beginning of the century theoreticians of revolution have told us that the chances of revolution have significantly decreased in proportion to the increased destructive capacities of weapons at the unique disposition of governments. The history of the last seventy years, with its extraordinary record of successful and unsuccessful revolutions, tells a different story. Were people mad who even tried against such overwhelming odds? And, leaving out instances of full success, how can even a temporary success be explained? The fact is that the gap between state-owned means of violence and what people can muster by themselves--from beer bottles to Molotov cocktails and guns--has always been so enormous that tech nical improvements make hardly any difference. Textbook instructions on "how to make a revolution" in a step-by-step progression from dissent to conspiracy, from resistance to armed uprising, are all based on the mistaken notion that revolutions are "made." In a contest of violence against violence the superiority of the government has always been absolute; but this superiority lasts only as long as the power structure of the government is intact--that is, as long as commands...
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This document was uploaded on 11/20/2013.

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