Article by Cal Nogov on May 6, 2016
Here is a meme I came across attacking voluntarism.
Most, who understand voluntarism, will immediately recognize the false choice and deception of the second frame, but for those who don’t I’ll go into a little depth.
The first frame is completely voluntarism. We gather from the frame that the employer portrayed on the right has offered the person on the left a job at $1 per hour. The person on the left claims they can’t survive on $1 per day. The person on the right says don’t take the work then. This is perfectly fine. They couldn’t come to an arrangement that they both agreed upon, so they choose to go separate ways.
There is no oppression, aggression, or coercion here from either person. The only oppression portrayed is nature, and what can you say about nature, she’s a heartless bitch. Also, neither is using the coercive properties of nature to oppress the other. The person on the left can choose to work for themselves or find another employer who will pay more. In either case the person on the right isn’t going to prevent the person on the left from doing that or steal whatever the person on the left earns.
Frame one: Totally voluntary. No human coercion. Choices made from free will.
In the second frame the roles are reversed. The person on the left now doesn’t want to pay income taxes and the person on the right says don’t work then. This appears to be a voluntary choice as well, but it is a false choice. It involves coercion. Somebody IS forcing him.
The first layer of coercion is the tax man. The tax man is going to take the man’s money by force if he makes any. The second layer of coercion is the tax man using nature to do the dirty work if the man chooses not to work. In order for this man to stay alive he must pay the tax man a portion of what he earns. To avoid the tax man, his only choices are death by nature or death by the tax man’s gun. There is no option where he can both make a living and not pay a third party extortionist. This is the equivalent of an armed assailant giving you the choice of -your money or your life-. You may very well hand over your money, but only because you are being threatened. This is not a voluntary exchange, it is made under duress.
Frame two: Not voluntary. Two layers of human coercion. Choices made under duress.