Within Libertarianism there is an age old conflict between minarchists and anarchists. While I mostly see myself as a minarchist this is a matter of pragmatism rather than definitive principled defense of a minimal state or any kind of state. It is my opinion that Anarcho-Capitalism is the ideal but an ideal, might I add, that can’t possibly exist in modern society(outside of some esintric billionaire that has a private island outside of government jurisdiction and a desire to social experiment).
So it’s important before we start to know what we mean by certain terms.
Anarchism an political ideology that involves a rejection of the compulsory state.
Nihilistic Anarchy basically Road Warrior.
Philosophic Anarchy an ideology that proposes a voluntary alternative to the compulsory state.
Minarchy a political ideology that adheres to a belief in a minimalist state.
Anarcho-Capitalism an anarchist philosophy that advocates organizing society along laize-faire capitalist lines.
What does Anarcho-Capitalist society look like?
In an Anarcho-Capitalist society the Courts, Police, Military, etc. are owned by competing firms. There is a set of laws based on objective moral codes, such as laws against rape, murder, theft, etc., and these private firms compete for customers who pay them to enforce such codes. Thus the system is completely voluntary as opposed to the current compulsory state in which the law enforcement agencies, courts, military, etc are monopolies owned by a single entity and in which money is stolen from the citizens to pay for said “services”. Monopolies are of course the source of inequities in the system such as police brutality as the government has no reason to limit said inequities since it cannot go out of business.
How would a capitalist based system prevent abuses?
In such as system the competing firms must do a satisfactory job or they will lose customers. Also since they live in the society all of their employees would be equally subject to the law. Thus they can be arrested by any other firm. Thus they have an incentive not to abuse their power.
What about the poor?
Charity. Private charities feed, clothe, and shelter the poor. They could pay their “protection fee” as well. Also it is within the private firm’s own self-interest to assist the poor. Keeping the poor safe reduces crime which makes this job easier.
What about an invasion?
The private firms have an incentive to protect society from invasions because they have a need to protect their customer base. If they’re conquered they’re out of business. Plus as individuals they live in society and thus have family and friends living in society. Thus they are doubly incentivised to protect society.
Problem with Anarcho-Capitalism
It’s unfeasible in modern society. Modern society is so conditioned towards the compulsory state that it cannot possibly move towards anarcho-capitalism. Furthermore the anarcho-capitalist refusal to vote is irresponsible. Voting either works or it doesn’t. If it doesn’t you can’t be an aggressor. If it does you are acting in self-defense. In either case vote!