I used to be a conservative. Then I was a libertarian. Then I felt like an anarchist. Then I decided to just become a political nihilist.
This is because I believed that whatever ideology I followed would somehow fix things. In essence, I believed in an Utopian vision of the movements I ascribed myself to.
I know that many people those movements do not see themselves as Utopian. And they probably are not. For me, it was something I thought would work. If only there was less government, then things will work. If only there was no government, then things will work.
I admit this was a naïve view. Even most prominent people within these movements will outright say that their ideology is not a Utopian one. I’d agree. But I was too emotionally invested in the movements and it damaged my perspectives.
There is some legitimacy to opposing movements. All political movements are really good, in fact, of identifying problems. The problem is how they plan on solving them and most movements point to the use of violence and force to resolve it. Everything looks like a nail and you have a hammer and all that. It’s a good analogy when you consider that the government does tend to smash people’s faces in when it suits them.
As for the anarchist perspective, I felt that they had a lot of good ideas but failed to properly handle matters of justice. At best, they said that murderers would be isolated in their homes. Which is absurd really. A murderer will not stay put, no matter what restrictions you implement.
Also, while most forms of justice for an anarchist are solid, the methods employed for cases of murder, rape, and kidnapping are lacking. There needs to be something more serious than a simple reimbursement to a family.
I think that most people want to outsource hard decisions to other people. This is why we have leaders and followers. Most people would rather not be the ones to have to decide on whether we are going to war or whether or not we should kill a person for what they have done.
Most people want to be free from the guilt of hard choices. This is why a democracy or republic inevitably degenerates into a system where common people push for laws and edicts that absolve them of the bad consequences of their actions. From banker bailouts to insane standards of alimony, we see government protecting groups of people from their bad decisions in some way.
I don’t believe that there is a good government system. I don’t believe that we will ever have one. At best, we’ll have a generation of righteous men who are able to properly run things followed by centuries of incompetent boobs who are too high-minded to put things in proper perspective.
I don’t know what the future of the United States holds. I know that most people are dissatisfied with how things are and that the economy if in a depression. These are all the elements of a great shift in government policy. Whether or not this shift will be in the form of total foreign wars or in the dismantling of government agencies remains to be seen. One thing is certain, though, is that we are on the cusp of a new age in the the Untied States.
I hope the new thing works for me.