—“Dear mr Doolittle, How can the state, based on extortion and theft, be reciprocal? Real question. Not some goofy troll. Kind regards”— Sietze Bosman @fryskefilosoof
The state enforces order (cooperation) sufficient to deny competitors access to the territory, resources, people, their production, and networks of productivity and trade. And to deny internal inhibitors to the income necessary to pay for it. It does this by suppressing local rent seeking, corruption, and transaction costs, and centralizing these returns as ‘taxation’, where concentration of that income can be devoted to the production of commons and the multipliers produced by such commons.
This creates opportunity for centralized corruption and alliance with the state against the people, but without exception, the returns on state vs non-state are obvious: non state’s cannot and do not exist. Even those claimed by ‘libertarians’ are just borderlands defended by states or empires, investing in settlement by permissiveness we translate as liberty. Since settlers provide claims to territory which can be defended by arms, because in fact, they are investing in that territory, and reciprocity is the only international natural law that we can observe. We defend what we invest in.
The only means of policing the state that we know of is rule of law through the courts of universal standing in matters both private and common.We have had this revoked by the state during the modern period, and we’ve been disintermediated from the courts as our means of defense.
Democracy can never control anything other than voting an oligarchy into or out of office. Its insufficient for policy or defense because representatives are not required to state terms of contract before they enter office. So with democracy, disintermediation from the courts the only remaining method of insurance of sovereignty, liberty, freedom, and reciprocity is the militia and revolt.
So the state must and can collect fees for defense, and the courts. It cannot compete unless it can collect fees for investment in the commons. Paying such people richly if small in number reduces their chances of corruption. But allowing them to buy votes through redistribution; and provides finance and internationals (large scale) with access to rents, rather than locals whose rents were suppressed (small scale), merely shifting the problem from many distributed rent seekers to fewer larger centralized rent seekers.
This would appear to be a null trade, but it’s not, since suppression of local corruption and rent seeking provides the economic velocity that makes finance and internationals possible. So we must simply repeat the process of using the courts and the law to suppress new, larger organizations of rent seekers and corruption. And this process never ends. Man invents. So men will invent new means of rents and corruption, and other men will use the market for the suppression of parasitism that we call the courts and the law to stop them.
In this sense the (positive ) market for goods, services, and information is the one we are most aware of. We are somewhat aware of the government (not state) as a market for commons. But of equal import is the (negative) market for the suppression of ir-reciprocity whether in the market for consumption (goods services information) or the market for multipliers (commons) we call government. Technically speaking the ‘state’ consists of the assets of the polity and the law its regulator, and the government a means of producing commons.
Where commons includes the state and its holdings and the means of defense whether military, judicial or sheriff.
Collectively the government and the state also provide the services of an insurer of last resort. The problem is maintaining its role as insurer, investor, and resolver of disputes, while not allowing the public to demand redistributions that limit their responsibility rather than insurance that retains it.
I hope that is enough of a picture for you. No you can’t live statelessly except in a desert, tundra, or artic waste.
That’s why no one has or does.
I suppose that like many people who can consume information for entertainment and status you assume man is moral, rather than amoral, and choosing the moral and immoral as incentives provide. We can in fact read others. However history says that reading creates moral behavior not that moral behavior is intuitive. As anyone who has raised children finds rather obvious.