THE INDIVIDUAL, SOCIETY, AND THE STATE.
only to put it in governments; those who have ceased to be Church-worshippers only to become State-worshippers; those who have abandoned pope for king or czar, and priest for president or parliament,—have indeed changed their battle-ground, but none the less are foes of Liberty still. The Church has become^an object of derision; the State must be made equally so. The State is said by some to be a "necessary evil"; it must be made unnecessary. This century's battle, then, is with the State: the State, that debases man; the State, that prostitutes woman; the State, that corrupts children; the State, that trammels love; the State, that stifles thought; the State, that monopolizes land; the State, that limits credit; the State, that restricts exchange; the State, that gives idle capital the power of increase, and, through interest, rent, profit, and taxes, robs industrious labor of its products.
How the State does these things, and how it can be prevented from doing them. Liberty proposes to show in more detail hereafter in the prosecution of her purpose. Enough to say now that monopoly and privilege must be destroyed, opportunity afforded, and competition encouraged. This is Liberty's work, and "Down with Authority" her war-cry.
CONTRACT OR ORGANISM, WHAT'S THAT TO US?
[Liberty, July 30, 1887.]
Some very interesting and valuable discussion is going on in the London Jus concerning the question of compulsory versus voluntary taxation. In the issue of June 17 there is a communication from F. W. Read, in which the following passage occurs:
The voluntary taxation proposal really means the dissolution of the State into its constituent atoms, and leaving them to recombine in some way or no way, just as it may happen. There would be nothing to pre- vent the existence of five or six "States" in England, and members of all these "States" might be living in the same house! The proposal is. it appears to me, the outcome of an idea in the minds of those who propound it that the State is, or ought to be, founded on contract, just as a Joint-stock company is. It is a similar idea to the defunct "original contract" theory. It was thought the State must rest upon a contract. There had been no contract in historic times; it was therefore assumed that there had been a prehistoric contract. The voluntary taxationist says there never has been any contract; therefore the State has never had any ethicalbasis; therefore we will not make a contract. The explanation of the