Discussion and Debate about The Picket Line in Blogland

A few mentions in the blogworld:

  • First off, thanks to Dave’s Picks for introducing his readers to The Picket Line.
  • Claire Wolfe gave The Picket Line a plug a while back that was full of praise for my project. “I wish that the anarcho-theorists who know exactly how life ‘ought’ to be conducted in Libertopia — but whose own daily lives are filled with tax-paying and other forms of going-along-to-get-along with the state — would take more of a lesson from Dave Gross,” she wrote.

    In a subsequent post, she added some nuance to that position: “I do go on about the virtues of dropping out and not paying the effing state to commit foul deeds. And I have no use whatsoever for people who talk the ivory-tower theoretical talk of freedom but don’t walk the right-down-here-on-the-gritty-ground walk of freedom. But that’s not to say I imagine that everybody out there with a good job and a hefty tax bill ought to be cringing in guilt. Every subversive, underground movement (which freedom is, and must be, these days) needs its moles, too.…

    “I do believe that dropping out and refusing to fund the growing police state is the most moral individual choice. But it’s not necessarily the most practical choice. And if we’re really to have a freedom movement and not just a bunch of ragged individuals, we need our ‘mole’ brothers just as much as we need any other sort of freedom partisans. The only deep sin against freedom is the sin of hypocrisy — of talking the talk when you don’t even make an effort to walk the walk. But the walk can be walked down a lot of different paths.”
  • Thanks also to Rob of biscoRADIO for starting a discussion about The Picket Line on that site.
  • John Venlet at Improved Clinch has started a heated discussion about The Picket Line. One writer insists that “there’s nothing wrong with paying ransom to the state when it advances your pursuit of your values.… If Gross is happy with his choice that’s great, but I often detect more than a whiff of pride in self-sacrifice from folks advocating similar paths and I find nothing admirable in self-sacrifice.”

    A similarly-themed discussion is ongoing over at The Claire Files Board. One commentator takes issue with my feeling complicit with the government by paying taxes. “If a petty thief or mugger manages to steal $20 from you, then buys a knife with the money and slits fifty throats with the knife will that be your fault too?” he asks.