I work in an office environment so it should go without saying that I’m a fan of the Dilbert comic. In a strange but positive turn of events, a recent post by Dilbert’s author, Scott Adams, leads me to believe he’s traveling down the road to anarchism:
I have a hundred-year plan to eliminate government.
The key to making this work is picking one element of government at a time and using technology to eliminate it. Remember, we have a hundred years to develop and test lots of little plans. So we won’t permanently eliminate any part of government until citizens have seen proof it can work on a state level, or for a brief test period nationally, or in another country.
He gives several examples of how technology could be used to replace government functions. If you’re a neophile anarchist, such as myself, what he’s saying is nothing new. I’ve been advocating the use of technology to eliminate the state by providing competition and alternatives to its programs. One of the state’s greatest weaknesses is its inability to adapt to long term changes. We see this whenever the state moves to regulate a new technology, often before the ramifications of that technology are understood.
Its regulations are seldom sensible and usually take the form of outright prohibitions or licensing. My favorite example of this is Wisconsin’s ban using electromagnetic weapons for hunting. Electromagnetic weapons, as far as hunting goes, are still fantasy but the Wisconsin government has already banned such usage even though we have no understanding of how such technology would effect hunting.
I theorize that the state’s hatred of new technologies stems from its fear of being supplanted by them.