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Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The 27 Ninjas Argument

I liked David Z's reference to "the 27 Ninjas argument". Many philosophical discussions place you in a hopeless situation and ask you what to do. For example, "Four people are on a crashing airplane with only two parachutes. Who deserves to be saved?" Debating hopeless situations leads to practically no insight for handling everyday situations.

The origin of the analogy is "You're alone in a dark alley and you're assaulted by 27 ninjas. What do you do?" Unless you're the hero in a Jackie Chan movie, you probably die.

I like the "Wrath of Kkan" solution (fnord!). If you're forced to play a no-win game, you cheat and break the rules so you can win!

Dealing with the State is a no-win game. Via agorism, you cheat and break the rules so the game can be won. If you strictly follow the letter of every law, then it is impossible to live a morally just life. For example, it's immoral to pay income taxes and use slave points as money, because the profits of taxation and inflation are used for war, terrorism, and corporate welfare. In order to live a morally just life, you have to boycott the income tax and Federal Reserve. Since you're a criminal anyway, you might as well boycott all the laws that place pointless restrictions on what you can do.

Some laws are legitimate; I don't advocate boycotting the laws banning murder. Every reasonable person agrees that murder, assault, and individual theft are crimes. You don't need a monopolistic State to enforce things that nearly everyone agrees is a crime. The evil of the State is the subtle crimes it encourages, most notably the corrupt nature of the monetary system and the taxation system. I consider it morally acceptable to use violence to defend yourself from State aggression. However, such defense is not practical in the present, due to the superior resource of the State. If you attempt to violently resist the State once State police have targeted you, then you are merely getting yourself killed.

Some people say "Don't disobey the State. The State is omnipotent!" If you assume that the bad guys are all-powerful, then there's no point doing anything at all. If you don't practice agorism because you're afraid of the bad guys, you're essentially saying "Life is a no-win game. Why bother doing anything?"

By the "27 ninjas argument", pro-State trolls say that resisting the State is pointless because the State is omnipotent. If your enemy is all-powerful, then why bother doing anything at all? I haven't been arrested or assassinated (yet?) based on my blog's content. There are other people speaking out for freedom.

At this point, I consider the collapse of the State to be a historic inevitability. Severe abuses cannot continue indefinitely without a backlash. At this point, the only issue left to be decided is "Will the collapse of the State be very violent and bloody, or will it be mostly nonviolent?" If agorists do a good job building an alternate economic and political system as the State collapses, then the collapse should be mostly nonviolent.

1 comment:

fritz said...

The answer is simple to the 27 ninja argument. It actually happened to me last week. Walking alone down a back ally, I was suddenly surrounded by 27 Ninjas...I look around, seeing no alternative, I did what any other red blooded American would have done.
I reached into my pocket and grabbed my supper hero ring, Placed it on my finger, And kicked butt.. Needless to say,,,, They didn't stand a chance.

here is a nice joke I like to play on new people at my work,,its called the hopeless situation.

They find out that I was in the army, They ask if I was in the war. I say of course , They ask what it was like. I say I'm not sure I want to talk about it.. They say Come on please,,And of course I respond , well just this once.

It was when I was in Iraq, with my platoon. We were sent to engage a small force right out side of Faluja . Right before we made contact we were ambushed. The ambush was heavy and our platoon made for cover in a clump of trees. As we ran for cover, men from my platoon were dropping all around me. After making the group of trees there wasn't many of us left. We engaged in a heavy fire fight with the enemy.The small group of remaining defenders was dwindling fast. When I suddenly realized I was the last remaining soldier.

I pause the story, And look concerned. Wait for them to ask me to continue.

Well I say, dead bodies all around me, I'm the last one of my platoon left. I look to the right of me and see 10 rebels behind a wall, All pointing their AK's in my direction. In front is approaching 3 rebel pick up trucks with machine gun mounts. To the left I see 5 rebel snipers on a roof, all trained in my direction. And when I turn to run I discover a whole platoon of rebel forces taking up position behind me.

I pause the story and wait, Looking concerned, I now need someone to ask me..Than what happened.

as soon as someone asks me.. than what happened.

I look at them with a straight face and say,,,,Well I died of course,,,,Than break out in uncontrolled laughter. If delivered correctly it can be a gut buster....

When facing a totally hopeless situation,,Just die..


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