Libertarian philosophy that advocates non-political strategies to delegitimize the State

Voluntaryism (sometimes voluntarism) is a philosophy which holds that all forms of human association should be voluntary, a term coined in this usage by Auberon Herbert in the 19th century, and gaining renewed use since the late 20th century, especially among libertarians. Its principal beliefs stem from the non-aggression principle.


Auberon Herbert, Part 1, by Wendy McElroy, Future of Freedom, Feb 2011
First part of biographical essay on Auberon Herbert; discusses Spencer's influence on him, his views on anarchism vs. voluntaryism, self-ownership, majority rule, war and imperialism
"Today, however, he is perhaps best remembered for popularizing Voluntaryism — a political tradition maintaining that all human interaction should be voluntary and rejecting the initiation of force. The only justification for force is self-defense, including the defense of property. ... By contrast, '[in] voluntaryism the state employs force only to repel force — to protect the person and the property of the individual against force and fraud; under voluntaryism the state would defend the rights of liberty, never aggress upon them.'"
Conscience on the Battlefield, by Leonard Read, 1981
Pamphlet written in 1951, during the Korean War, updated with prologue in 1981; Read recalls the 1918 incident when the troopship he was on was sunk by a German submarine and wonders about his thoughts if he were dying (in 1951) on a Korean battlefield
"There is strength only in that unity which results from like-mindedness. This originates with an individual's actions being in unity with his conscience. In short, the type of unity that has lasting strength is born of integrity. Its extension depends on the consciences of men being similar. The result is similarity in action – action dictated by conscience instead of by Caesars. This is the kind of unity voluntary service produces."
In Pursuit of Liberty, by Jarret Wollstein, May 1997
Primer on liberty concepts, including voluntary vs. coercive associations, individual rights, government and possible future improvements in the status quo
"We need others for most of what we want out of life: companionship, friendship, family, recreation, and wealth. ... There are only two basic ways of getting what you want from others: voluntarily or coercively. When you deal with others voluntarily, others deal with you because they want to, because they receive some benefit – material or psychological – by dealing with you. The tools of voluntarism are friendship, trade, compassion, and love."
In Search of a Word: Limited Government versus 'Anarchy', by Spencer H. MacCallum, The Voluntaryist, Oct 1996
Contrasts the positions of Hornberger, who endorses "limited government, with that of Baldy Harper, who preferred to hold "the ideal of a 'total alternative' to political government" as a guiding light towards a voluntary society
"If it doesn't offend either experience or reason to contemplate altogether voluntary alternatives to the present political administration of community services at the local level, are such alternatives not conceivable at all levels of society? For those who are inclined to say categorically no, the challenge for them is to identify where the line shall be drawn. ... In principle, is there any point on a graduated scale of size that we can point to and say, at this point proprietary administration can no longer work; at this point we must embrace political administration?"
Neither Bullets nor Ballots [PDF], by Wendy McElroy, The Voluntaryist, Oct 1982
First editorial, describing the two major goals of The Voluntaryist
"A goal of The Voluntaryist is to construct a cohesive theory of anti-political libertarianism, of Voluntaryism, which will investigate such issues as whether moral or legal liabilities adhere to the act of voting someone into power over another's life. ... Those who embrace political office hinder the efforts of Voluntaryists who are attempting to throw off this institution of force."
Related Topic: Libertarian Party
The Ethics of Voting: Part I [PDF], by George H. Smith, The Voluntaryist, Oct 1982
Examines libertarian and anarchist theory to provide a critique of electoral voting, i.e., voting for government officials
"Voluntaryists are more than libertarians; they are libertarian anarchists. ... Libertarian theory condemns invasive (rights-violating) acts and says that all human interaction should be voluntary. ... Libertarian anarchism professes not only the nonaggression principle, but the additional view that the State is necessarily invasive and should thus stand condemned."
Related Topics: The State, Voting
The Wisdom of LeFevre, by Lew Rockwell, The Free Market, Jul 2001
Discusses various aspects of LeFevre's thoughts, e.g., the distinction between true and artificial government, patriotism, and includes excerpts from a draft new Declaration of Independence
"The individual actor was at the heart of his political worldview. He saw that civilization stemmed from the voluntary actions of men, not the laws of the state. Through their interactions in voluntary associations, of which the free market is only one of many, people build the structures of security and prosperity. That is the basis of cultural flourishing. Once created, civilization 'breeds further desire and necessity for voluntary individual action. The one aids and abets the other.'"


The Voluntaryist, by Carl Watner (Editor)
Quarterly, since 1982
Voluntaryist - The Comic Series
Tagline: Humanity's Last Stand Against Government.
"... the tale of a superhero who finds himself pitted against the government as the government tries to enslave humanity once and for all."

The introductory paragraph uses material from the Wikipedia article "Voluntaryism" as of 12 Oct 2018, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.