You Keep Using that Word

The state never ceases to amuse me. They attempt to turn countless philosophies, movements, religions, and other such organizations into boogeymen but have no idea what they stand for. Take anarchism for example, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) anarchists are merely “Criminals seeking an ideology to justify their activities”. That quote, along with various other entirely incorrect information regarding anarchism, was obtained through domestic terrorism training material [PDF]. Let’s take a look at some anarchist criminals who were merely looking for a cause to justify their activities:

Murray Rothbard is obviously a dangerous criminal, what with his suit and bow tie. Wait, I don’t think he was ever actually imprisoned, so much for that theory. Let’s try somebody else:

Jeffrey Tucker is obviously a criminal, look at that bow tie and smile. He’s obviously evil even though he’s only been put into jail once that I’m aware of and that was failing to pay a parking ticket (absolutely dastardly, I know). Perhaps we can find somebody else to fit the narrative:

Hans Herman Hoppe speaks German, and clear sign that he’s a criminal mastermind. Once again this mastermind has managed to avoid arrest and continues to advocate the non-aggression principle and the mutually beneficial nature of the free market. Let’s try again:

Walter Block isn’t fitting the narrative either, damn it. OK, let’s try one more time:

Lysander Spooner was obviously evil. Not only did he create a company that successfully competed with the United States Post Office until the state shut him down but he was also an abolitionist.

OK, the FBI’s narrative isn’t holding up so well. It appears they may be incorrect about anarchists, perhaps they’re not all merely criminals looking for an ideology that justifies their activities. In fact many of the well-known anarchist philosophers appear to be perfectly lawful.

Incorrect generalizations weren’t the only idiotic thing found in the FBI’s training material. The thing I found most amusing is how the training material is entirely inconsistent. Take this example, on page three it’s stated that anarchists are “Highly dedicated to specific cause / ideology.” Page five says anarchists are “Not dedicated to particular cause.” What? So anarchists are highly dedicated to a specific cause but aren’t dedicated to a particular cause?

As I explained in my Anarchism 101 post, anarchism is a vast philosophy that covers individualists and collectivists. Some anarchists are violent revolutionaries while others believe in the non-aggression principle and oppose violent revolution. The FBI doesn’t want to take the time to cover such facts through because it fails to paint anarchists as the evil boogeymen the state would want you to believe they are. Whenever you hear some state organ explain how one group or another is evil, violent, and wants you dead remember this post. If they’re willing to lie about anarchists then they’re willing to lie about anybody.