By Nathan Barton
Baker’s Dozen ™ Things that Government Fears
1. People who can reason and absorb and analyze information. Their intelligence and rationality make them a threat to government, as they are less likely to respond to propaganda and even may respond to threats by not bowing down.
2. People who are able to make decisions and accept responsibility for those decisions. Government seeks “clients” – people who are unable or unwilling to act on their own, and want to be told what to do and to be protected from their own faults, vices, and failures. And the more people who make their own decisions and are responsible, the fewer people there are who are likely to be criminals and parasites which the government can use to justify its powers.
3. The truth. Truth is not just the first casualty in war, but in politics and the legislative and bureaucratic process. Government assumes (usually rightly) that if the truth gets out about it, its activities, its motives, and its results, that people will turn against it.
4. Separation of school and state. Government control of schools, at whatever level of enforcement and funding, ensures that the primary purpose of “public schools” (in the eyes of those who established it and government) is carried out to create docile citizens/subjects of government. It also means that rational, well-educated, and responsible people (see fears #1 and #2) are less and less likely to be a problem in the population as time goes on.
5. People whose first allegiance is to God and their religion. Even states and rulers who claim to accept the existence of (or even represent) a god still attempt to subordinate that religion to the government’s own desires. Those states and rulers which reject or deny the existence (or power) of a god instead become the god for their people. People who place God and their religion first, even if their religion tells them to be good citizens, cannot be trusted, when push comes to shove, to decide “rightly” between the State and their religion.
6. Mass disobedience (usually but not always “civil disobedience). Powerful as the State usually is, and can be, its power has limits. It is successful when most of the people (actually, the vast majority) obey with little or no questioning or protests. But if enough people disobey government rules and regulations, there comes a point when the State’s resources are unequal to the task. And it falls.
7. Being ignored. Closely related to mass disobedience, but on an individual basis, government hates and is endangered by being ignored: not just in ignoring government’s laws and rules and regulations, but in ignoring its propaganda and claims of power and control. Being ignored is a key indicator that government no longer functions for its primary purpose: controlling the bodies, hearts, and minds of people.
8. Press writers, editors, and publishers without political bias. Obviously, government wants and cultivates (and pays for) media who are biased towards it and the mainstream parties (which one they do really doesn’t matter, as long as they support one). And those members of the media who are politically biased AGAINST the State and its rulers are almost as good: they can be rounded up when convenient, and in the meantime serve as Judas goats. But an unbiased press professional (assuming that they exist) is a threat to the state because they will tell the truth about most everything!
9. Historians without political bias. Just as media types deal with day to day (and recent events) news, the historians deal with the past. Historians out to push their own brand of politics will lie and distort the facts, and that helps government. Those who are unbiased and present “just the facts, ma’am” threaten the government and the State because they make people think, and let people know that the State (and its schools) does not tell the truth.
10. A lack of enemies. While war is the health of the state, you don’t NEED to have a big enemy like the British or the Spanish empire or even the Confederacy or Nazis or Japs or Commies. But it is harder to grow the state when you are stuck with the small-fry, like petty thieves and even bootleggers and drug lords. Still even the fear that your next door neighbor is scoping his rifle and is an enemy because he clings to his god and his guns is enough to let the State grow. So the State constantly comes up with new enemies, fearing that the old ones will get dull and boring and not nearly scary enough. Thus we get homophobes and racists and more as new enemies.
11. A lack of threats. It isn’t just people (enemies) that help the State grow to “protect” their subjects; it can be natural events and processes too: that asteroid careening towards earth, next year’s hurricanes or typhoons or forest fires or floods, the latest and greatest bird flu or other virus, and so forth. People who don’t feel threatened constantly just are not as willing to have their pockets picked and their children drafted.
12. Honest tracking and reporting of financial matters, especially spending and revenue. Closely related to the State’s fear of the truth, it applies to the least things; the perks that elected (and appointed) officials get, the question of exactly HOW the guy in the White House now has millions in the bank that he didn’t when he moved in, and what really happened to those billions in the Pentagon or Health and Human Services, or in those congressional office buildings.
13. People who have not broken the law. This is one reason that we have so many laws. It is almost impossible for any person (even someone who is a vegetable on life support in a nursing home!) to NOT constantly break laws, and all these laws are designed to make people into law-breakers. When you break a law, you make it easier for the agents of the State to make you into an enemy of the State.