It is often wondered by critics of Voluntary Anarchy, “How would law and the courts function in a free society? Without one court system and the police to enforce it how would any ruling be enforced?” The answer to this is similar to the answer to almost every other Statist concern; look around you. We all adhere to what’s known as Natural/Common Law. It is not something arbitrarily written down by sociopaths behind closed doors and forced onto all by law enforcement dogs; rather it is something unwritten, implied, and generally understood by all entirely without “government” intervention and indeed would be thoroughly hindered by “government” intervention. This is the reason why we generally treat our friends and family with respect, decency, and compassion. However most people fail to realize that all people deserve this treatment regardless of whether they are family or close friends or completely unrelated strangers. Therefore it can be stated that when Natural/Common Law is applied to one’s family and friends one becomes a decent human being. When Natural/Common Law is applied to the entire human species one becomes a Voluntaryist.

 

A useful mental exercise to imagine how society would function without “government” is to imagine being stranded on a desert island with perhaps only 50 inhabitants. Who would determine the laws everyone would follow? Who would ensure the doling out of such laws? Who would enforce the laws? The answer is everybody and nobody. When two people encounter a dispute from which they cannot reach an agreement they appeal to such entities as third party dispute resolution or third party arbitration agencies. On an island of only 50 people, it can be understood that if someone refuses to come to an agreement or abide by the terms of an agreement, he would be ostracized by his peers thereby putting his life in danger. Since very few men are capable of living completely self-sufficiently without the help and skills of his fellow community members, most if not all members would find it in their best interests to adhere to the decision of the third party arbiter.

 

The ubiquitous threat of economic ostracism is a surprisingly effective means for maintaining order as oppose to threats and commands issued from a ruling elite. In such a small community reputation would be everything. If you have defrauded your neighbor you will suffer the disdain and scorn of all his friends and associates. Nobody wants to trade with a dishonest thief. These principles apply the same in a stateless society of any size. The number of people in a group does nothing to negate Natural/Common law or morality. Theft is theft regardless if it is committed by one person or a group of sociopaths calling themselves the “United States of America”.

 

 

Just do good things

 

Danilo Cuellar, peacefulanarchism.com