This story has been making the rounds over the last few days, with most commentary focusing on how terrible it is that funding for law enforcement was cut and how this represents the evils and shortcomings of a potential libertarian society. As you might have guessed, I think the real message of this story is far different, but it is a message the public desperately needs to hear, and to accept: The government can’t/won’t protect you.
Whether it’s an issue of can’t (they want to, but they just don’t have the means and the resources to do it effectively) or won’t (they just don’t care about you at all in the grand scheme of things) isn’t really important here, as the consequences are the same. Relying solely on the government to protect you is a very poor strategy – as this woman in Josephine County, Oregon found out the hard way.
In fact, I would say that the existence of government and its constant promises and assurances that it can/will protect us do far more harm than good. By convincing people that “call the police” is an effective self-defense strategy, the government in effect creates a moral hazard in which people have a disincentive to go about securing their own means of personal protection (precisely what this might entail is obviously a personal choice, and is beyond the scope of this article). If this woman hadn’t been under the illusion that a phone call to 911 can protect her from any conceivable harm, perhaps she would have taken some additional steps to protect herself, and perhaps this entire chain of events would have unfolded much differently.
The silver lining to this story is that others can learn from what happened to her. Not just the individuals in rural Josephine County, but everyone who currently lives under the illusion that the state can/will protect them. And we’re not just talking about physical violence here, either. The average person today believes that the government can protect them from any conceivable harm: physical violence, unemployment, lack of food, retiring without sufficient savings, banking failures, contaminated meat, and of course, not having any roads. All of these things – safety, security, money, food, transportation, are vital to having a happy and successful life. Depending on the government for any of them is a very poor idea, as you might soon be in the position of the Josephine County woman who calls up the government only to hear that the protection you were relying on isn’t there. That nobody is coming. Sorry citizen, you’re on your own. Good luck.
The more I study and analyze current events, the more convinced I become that the collapse of the state is inevitable. I cannot tell you whether it will happen in a matter of months or a matter of decades, but it is coming. Those who rely on government to supply their every need and desire are going to be in for a world of hurt when suddenly they have to rely on their own ability to provide value in the market in order to ensure their survival. I encourage you to not be one of these people. Don’t sit back and wait for the state to collapse to start preparing – start preparing yourself mentally right now! Take responsibility for yourself to the extent that you can, under the working assumption that government assistance will be completely and totally unavailable, because soon enough, that will be the reality. Form a neighborhood watch, take a self-defense course, buy a gun, save your money for a rainy day, do your due diligence on products you buy, and hell, you better go out and buy a four-wheel drive vehicle so that you can continue to get around when there aren’t any more roads!