Our Lexicon: Statists and Statism

I propose that you will benefit from using the terms Statist and Statism in preference to the standard mainstream political labels, such as moderate, liberal, conservative, etc.

Can these two words, Statist and Statism, really substitute for so many seemingly different labels? Here's why they can . . .

Traditional political labels under-emphasize what most mainstream political beliefs share in common.

  • Statism is the belief that politicians and bureaucrats are justified in using coercion to control peoples' lives.
  • A Statist is a person who advocates Statism.
  • Since The State is a coercive monopoly the Statist is a person who advocates coercion as a preferred method for achieving social goals.

These two related words, Statist and Statism, deal with the essential features of most mainstream political philosophies -- monopoly and coercion.

Free yourself from endless debates about the relative nature of things like conservatism and progressivism, fascism and socialism. Focus on the essentials. People who advocate State coercion as a preferred method for achieving social goals are Statists.


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Copyright (c) 2010 by Perry Willis. Permission to distribute this blog post for educational purposes is granted, if done with attribution to the author and the Downsize DC Foundation. Permission to use for commercial purposes is denied.