To appear in Volume Six of The Adventures of Meteor Mags and Patches.
ASTEROID UNDERGROUND GUEST COLUMN
METEOR MAGS: VIOLENCE AND THE STATE, 2027
The state must maintain its monopoly on violence, else it fails to be a state and will shrivel and die. This monopoly on violence is not a thing to be considered apart from the state, for it is indistinguishable from the state and is the very essence of it. Any violence on the part of individual citizens or non-state groups is antithetical to the monopoly, and thereby constitutes treason in its simplest form.
This does not mean all traitors share a common goal or even common values. All violence is treason, but the treasonous are not unified, and often commit violence upon other traitors. They are only unified in the eyes of the state, which is less concerned with the sociological origins of violence, and even less so its merits and flaws. The state is only concerned with maintaining its monopoly, and it will use violence to keep it.
All unsanctioned outbursts of aggression threaten the state’s monopoly. The child who kicks over the rubbish bin commits treason, as the burglar commits treason, and the barroom brawler commits treason. All must be suppressed though conditioning, punishment, and the channeling of aggression into state-sanctioned outlets.
This constant threat to the monopoly creates a pressure which the state must sometimes crush and other times release through tightly controlled channels. All which is fully controlled exists fully within the state’s monopoly and is part and parcel of the state. The state seeks integration of all uncontrolled non-state reality. Anything outside the state’s control, it will eventually seek to control.
Such control is the opposite of liberty to anyone but the state itself, which has full liberty, which is a pure liberty to do absolutely anything in the pursuit of its own perpetuation. Thus the traitor must stand for something, for she surely stands against the entire might of the state. History will be the final judge of her character, though the state may well prove to be her executioner.
Unify and organize now.