Convenience is tyranny

If there is one advantage of private over public tyranny — arguably — it is that private tyrants need only be obeyed voluntarily. The State, in its august moderation, writes laws to prevent private agents from acts of theft, for instance, reserving this right exclusively to government agents. But as “the peeple” are generally willing to be robbed by the tyrants of “capitalism” — in return for goods and services that will be exposed as worthless the moment they try to sell them again — the difference disappears.

Convenience is the primary tool of tyrants. They use it even when it is not strictly necessary, for instance, in withholding taxes on wages, which conveniently strip the citizen of his income. They might, as in the past, compel him to put his wealth into heavy commodities and lug them to the tax office. But under democracy, convenience prevails.

Recently, wearing ludicrous masks and maintaining a fathom’s distance from one’s neighbour, was the convenience enforced by “public health” — against a gain-of-function virus that was launched, conveniently in China.

But in civil, profane life, convenience is what makes the sale. “Convenience stores” pockmark the urban landscape, and “consumer credit” relieves the customer of having to awkwardly surrender his cash. The children who are marching for Hamas, currently, have no idea what things cost. They have been raised in the “credit” (and debit) culture in which someone else always does the math.

Convenience is the tyrant’s soporific. It is what bureaucracies (public and private) are created to advance. The freedom-loving man, by contrast, welcomes inconvenience, and whenever he is not prevented, does things for himself.