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We do not need bureaucrats.

2021-10-02

How did we get bureaucrats?

In a nutshell, it seems we got to "bureaucrats" from the basic idea that people want to work together on something, and things quickly spiralled out of control.

If you and a friend want to move a couch, you just get at opposite ends of the couch, crouch down, grab near the corners at the bottom, "lift with your legs", and start walking, with occasional verbal cues to help coördinate. There's no bureaucracy needed.

If you get together with some friends, buy a couple trucks, and take turns driving around helping other people move, you don't need bureaucracy.

If you get government permission to treat your giant fleet of trucks and giant bank account as though they collectively constituted a "legal person", you're creating a corporation, and now you need bureaucrats. Government itself is, in a similar respect, a corporation, but it gets its permission to be treated like some kind of special legal entity -- like a god handing down commandments to lesser corporations -- from force-monopolists (police and military), which is a bunch of people trained to commit acts of violence and ordered around by the government. In short, government gets permission from its minions. No, I don't mean voters; I mean minions. It's equivalent to hiring workers to build widgets for you to sell, except the minions and the constituents are the same people where in government they are not (ignoring some overlap).

It is, essentially, in the creation of an abstract entity at scale, with some external enforcement of the recognition of that entity as somehow concrete, where people are expected to regard as a real entity, that bureaucracy becomes "necessary".

We don't need these abstract entities at all. We can coöperate just fine without them. Sure, Kickstarter may require an abstract entity to work, but that's because of laws standing in the way of people choosing to Just Work (Together)™. If Kickstarter just offered a way for people to pool USD for goal achievement via some person's website, and asked for a small percentage for the trouble of providing this service, some busybody in a cheap suit with a pen and a pension would probably decide the whole thing was an unlicensed money transmitter or something like that, and people would go to prison.

This is why, to provide hosted tools for people to pool USD resources to get things done, Kickstarter, IndieGoGo, and others incorporate and hire bureaucrats.

Now, your fees to use Kickstarter increase. You have to pay bureaucrats, you have to provide enough extra money to defray costs of compliance measures and potential fines if someone dots a T or crosses an I, and soon you're drowning in red tape and a revolving door of predatory CEOs.

We do not need any of that crap, really -- not in principle. We only "need" it because someone forces that need upon us.

Of course, with decentralized ad hoc currency systems, we're starting to find ways around that. There are ways to coördinate resource allocation without someone in the middle being directly responsible for the resources at any particular time.

It is no wonder that the state, the (often indirect) source of (almost?) all bureaucracy in society today, is trying so hard to find ways to regulate the benefits of decentralized cryptocurrencies to death.