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For Your Own ProtectionThis is a question that many politicians attempt to answer… attempt and fail miserably. Yesterday the Chilean president Ms Bachelet promulgated the law 20.861 which increases the number of prosecutors by 122 throughout the country. The purpose of this increase is to “improve the prosecution of crimes with the largest impact on population”. During the ceremony she expressed that “there are no magic solutions to end delinquency”. And this kind-of sort-of more-or-less seem to make sense… until you think it through.

Let’s begin by stating that there is no objective measure as to how much “delinquency” is tolerable and how much is “too much”. It is clear that ideally we would like to have zero, but this is simply not achievable… almost… if you believe the USSR… which claimed exactly zero… No, we are not making this stuff up. Look it up.

We are therefore stuck with reality which dictates that we will always have some delinquency. The question then stands, how much is “enough”? Unfortunately, politicians (and democracy) have no answer to this question. Take a look at what ‘s happening in California, US for example. They keep building prisons. How many prisons are enough? Nobody knows.

This question about “criminality” is not a theoretical problem but a very real one. Actually, it is a question about economic calculation. The question is this: how much money is “society” willing to pay in order to bring “criminality” down to a certain level? And what is this level?

Politicians work hard to avoid answering this question because increasing “law and order” and “security” is always good at ballot time. Yet, we never seem to be able to get the cost of these “privileges” and “services” we so “enjoy”. We know that “security services” are going up. We know that “law enforcement” is going up. We know that the size of the “intelligence community” is going up. Well, what are we getting out of it? Are we “safer”? No. If anything we are more threatened by all those “enforcement” and “security” organizations. How much are we paying for all of that? We don’t know. What is the cost of apprehending every criminal? Not a clue. Are all those costs the same? Are “major” crimes more expensive that “petty” ones? No idea.

The point is that, as usual, governments are out of control. It is nice to acknowledge that in order to have less “criminality” there are “no magic solutions”… but it would have been better if after such statement they would not attempt to do just that. To use magic solutions (i.e. the endless increase of government agents) to try to achieve such impossible result.

Then, we have the issue of determining which are the crimes with the “largest impact on population”. How exactly do we determine this? By the size of the prison term? Unlikely. Prison terms are determined subjectively by politicians. By the number of affected people? Unlikely. Pick-pockets affect a lot of people but just a little bit every one of them. By economic damage? Unlikely. First at all, economic calculations in democracy are deeply flawed and secondly a great deal of “victims” are insured. So there is no accurate manner to perform an adequate economic calculation. So then, how do we determine which crimes we persecute first in an objective manner? Well?... Camon’… well?... anybody?...

Guess so…

THE LIBERTARIAN WAY

We have stated previously that justice is not a matter of gut feeling but a matter of turning back the clock to way things were before the event. If this is not possible, then justice is all about compensation. See for example Justice in the Austro Libertarian System. Within an Austro Libertarian system there are no “law enforcers” because there are no laws to enforce. The only thing to monitor for is either breaches in contractual agreements or interactions with other peoples’ properties without previous agreement.

As such, persecution in Austro Libertarians systems is a matter of economics. Organizations will provide persecutorial services (as in find and chase people) for affected clients…for a price. Oftentimes this price will be a commission expressed as a percentage of the recovered damages, plus extra fees charged to the persecuted people. As the level of persecution is determined by its monetary value, this process creates an automatic “value scale” determining which events impact people the most. It is quite simple, really. The higher the true economic damage (as calculated in a true free market) will determine the effort of these persecutorial organizations will assign to.

If you think that this is an illusion, a fairy tale, think again. How many private investigators are in your country? We would bet that quite a large number.

There is no point in spending a lot of money in wages to persecute pick-pocketers because of the low compensation money they will provide. Thus, so-called “crimes” of lesser degree will automatically be assigned less persecutors. On the other hand, “crimes” of high value such as murder or robbery will automatically attract a great deal of persecutors.

And then we have your opinion. Why should a bunch of politicians decide for you how much “security” and “safety” you absolutely need to have? This is ridiculous. Moreover considering that you can increase your security by hiring the services of competent security companies. How many houses have such alarm systems?

But what about personal security? Well. What about it? In a Libertarian system you can carry as many weapons as you wish. Don’t you think that this will automatically convert a “soft target” which is likely unarmed (thanks to ridiculous laws promulgated by idiotic politicians) into a potential “hard” target? Look, this is easy. Thieves are in the business of making profits while minimizing risk. Anything that increases risk for them is good for you. Basic common sense. Yet, all laws are geared in the opposite direction!

CONCLUSION

In a Libertarian system you decide how much security you want and at which price. Additionally, there are services that deal with so-called “crimes” and such services are not only tailored to the amount of “crime” out there but they prioritize based on the severity of the “crime” on a more-or-less objective manner. In other words, in a Libertarian system “crime” fighting is self-adjusted. No government needed. How about that!

But then again, perhaps you feel better knowing that the police force in your neighborhood is expanding, even when you don’t need it. Perhaps you feel better knowing that “security organizations” have you monitored. Perhaps you feel fine with the notion that everything you do and think is the subject of extensive analysis by the “intelligence community”. That’s all right. We have two examples in history showing how successful such systems are and how many benefits brought to people: Nazism and Communism…oh…wait…

Note: please see the Glossary if you are unfamiliar with certain words.

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