Natural Order, State, and Looting

11 12 2006

The experience of “regime change” in Iraq raises fundamental questions about political economy and philosophy. For example, the looting and vandalizing occurring after the military defeat of the Saddam Hussein government in Baghdad has been cited as proof of the necessity of a state, a living refutation of the idea that a natural order of private property can produce orderliness within the framework of liberty. This is far from the truth. Notwithstanding considerable talk to the contrary, the natural relationship among people is one of peaceful cooperation, based on the recognition of the higher physical productivity of the division of labor.