Wed Jul, 13 2005
"A government that must rely solely on voluntary contributions (via donations, user fees, a lottery, etc.) would be one very unlike anything with which we are familiar."(Geoffrey Allan Plauche)
...except, of course, for that thing known as a business. This is why we're not talking about a "government". It (the reason "why we're not talking about a 'government'") is because a business is not government, nor vice-versa. I believe Plauche understands this, but this single false equivocation is so rampant these days that it requires lots of baby-steps to make clear how rotten it all is.
*** I agree that Roy Childs had it right the first time. The abstraction (Plauche's "elaboration") of requisites for Ayn Rand's concept of government is correct, and this is the most important contradiction in Objectivism: arbitrarily severing its ethics from its politics.
*** What's with all this "dualism"? I'd wondered how they (Chris Sciabarra and Plauche) were using the term, starting with a review of Anaxagorean split of mind and matter. No; I conclude that they're talking about little more than definitions. In his fifth paragraph, Plauche recaps relations among various "monopolistic institution[s]" (what Plauche correctly spikes as Rand's "definition" in his third paragraph), but all this is really only different arrangements of the same basic thing. It's not about "types"; it's about the degree of application of the basic thing. Now; if we want to call it "dualism" to properly identify two different things and scrupulously discriminate between them, then I guess it's okay, but everybody should bear in mind that that's what it means.
Plauche goes on to draw a very fine distinction between "government" and "the State", and the previous quote from Rand is always provocative, for good reason. There is a world of implication in the phrase, "under objectively defined laws", and it is not necessarily limited to anyone's "monopoly on the use of force" or forced delegation of the right.