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Ayn Rand believed that the government should consist of three essential things. The Courts, Police, and the Military. She did however struggle with how to fund it since taxation is theft and hoped someone would figure it out once that was achieved. Is Anarcho-Capitalism that solution? Since It would provide a court, police and Military funded privately and without coercion wouldn't Rand approve?

asked Jul 09 '11 at 20:37

kitporath's gravatar image


edited Jul 10 '11 at 18:50

Greg%20Perkins's gravatar image

Greg Perkins ♦♦

No, she wouldn't approve. http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/anarchism.html

(Jul 10 '11 at 00:12) Kjetil Knausgård Kjetil%20Knausg%C3%A5rd's gravatar image

The topic of anarchy (or "competing governments") has already been well covered on this forum under the "anarchy" tag, including the Lexicon link provided by the comment from Kjetil.

What is new is the following claim:

She did however struggle with how to fund it since taxation is theft and hoped someone would figure it out once that was achieved.

I cannot imagine where this claim could have come from, unless the questioner is relying on secondary Libertarian sources that do not take Ayn Rand's own writings fully into account. Ayn Rand published an entire article on "Government Financing in a Free Society," republished in The Virtue of Selfishness, Chapter 15. The key excerpts from that article can be found in The Ayn Rand Lexicon under the topic of "Taxation."

I can guess that perhaps the formulation, "hoped someone would figure it out," might be a garbled reference to the division of labor between philosophy and other fields such as law, political science, and economics, which Ayn Rand explains briefly in her article. The relevant paragraph is part of the very first excerpt in the Lexicon entry on "Taxation.".

answered Jul 10 '11 at 01:54

Ideas%20for%20Life's gravatar image

Ideas for Life ♦

Government cannot be "competing". Government == monopoly.

(Aug 04 '11 at 11:23) uuu uuu's gravatar image

Government is only a monopoly within a particular geographic area. Unless you have one world government, then governments can, and do, compete.

(Aug 04 '11 at 18:28) anthony anthony's gravatar image

AnCap encourages the idea of multiple competing governments within the same geographical area, and specifically lobbies against the idea that government should be a monopoly.

(Aug 04 '11 at 20:54) Rick ♦ Rick's gravatar image

As far as I can tell the primary proponents of what they call "anarcho-capitalism" do not, in fact, encourage the idea of multiple competing governments. They encourage the idea of the elimination of governments. And as far as I can tell, they are against government because it is, they say, a coercive monopoly, which is significantly different from being against the idea that government should be a monopoly.

(Aug 05 '11 at 09:56) anthony anthony's gravatar image
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What solution to taxation does anarcho-capitalism propose that is not possible with an Objectivist-style government? "Funded privately and without coercion" is not a solution.

Objectivism supports the idea of a voluntarily funded government. Rand suggested at least one possible solution, a fee based on the monetary value of contracts. People could decide not to pay the fee, but then if there was a dispute over the contract, the parties involved could not use the court system to resolve it. There are, of course, other possible solutions, too. It was only the details of the approach that Rand left to others.

There are many problems with ancap that are unrelated to taxation and the source of funds. The idea of competing governments, for example, is seriously flawed. For a comprehensive rebuttal of ancap and other forms of anarchism, have a look at Harry Binswanger's article on the subject.

answered Aug 04 '11 at 00:45

Rick's gravatar image

Rick ♦

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Asked: Jul 09 '11 at 20:37

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Last updated: Aug 05 '11 at 10:10