The proceeding posts about democracy and its shortcomings were quite negative in tone and content. This was necessary to highlight the fake dichotomy that is the modern democratic process in the West.
This does rather pose the obvious question “Well what can one person do?” If we are not very careful, this can easily become a philosophy of acquiescence, despair and slothful compliance. It hardly bears repeating, but I’ll say it anyway, I reject the initiation of force, so actions have to be peaceful.
So what can we do?
First, change what you can change, not what you can’t. Protest marches against the Iraq war changed little or nothing, we really can’t affect that. It’s a day out for the marchers, they feel self-righteous showing how much they ‘care’ but it achieves nothing. We can however, control our own lives and impact on our sphere of influence.
So for my part, I try not to interact with statists at all. Boycott is a highly effective weapon, just ask Rosa Parks. As far as you can, don’t use their courts* or their council ‘services’ or their education or health systems. Trade only with non-state entities. Personally, with great regret, I do pay their taxes. It seems to me you are inviting violence if you don’t and it’s one of the laws they take seriously. Also, ignore all their edicts about smoking or boozing or salt or recycling etc and think the issues through for yourself. When you have to interact, keep it utterly minimal and don’t give them any more than they specifically demand with the force of law.
I include boycotting people who work for the state. I know this is not easy, but as far as you can, do not deal with state employees in your personal life. Ultimately, the state is just a group of individuals in various guises who choose to act through state institutions and perpetuate them. Without these individuals there would be no institutions, no state.
Second, talk to people about the government. I am not saying it should be all you talk about, but we must try to normailse the currently unthinkable, i.e. that one can manage quite well without the state in any number of areas. My own favourite question (in the UK) relates to something as mundane as dentistry. People often moan about not being able to get an NHS dentist** I say “Why do you think you can’t look after your own teeth without the government?” It’s challenging and some people will become quite aggressive when you do this, but we must normalise the concept of doing without the state.
Third, reject the initiation of violence, or the threat thereof (including shouting), in all your personal affairs, act and live peacefully, save for extremities of self-defence. Thus don’t smack (i.e. hit) your kids, don’t shout at your spouse or other motorists. Treat with people voluntarily or not at all.
Fourth, don’t define your life by what you reject, what you are against. Live free and joyous as far as you can. Vaclav Havel when under a communist tyranny (from which there was seemingly no hope of escape) suggested thus. Live as if you are free. It’s surprisingly liberating.
Social change doesn’t come from government. It sure as hell doesn’t come from voting in a new and identical sociopath politician. It comes from people. So let’s all play our part and change what we can change.
* obviously, if you are the defendant, turn up, otherwise you invite violence from them
** because, shock, horror, state supplied goods and services are rationed!