Our Lexicon: The Federal State

I have argued in an earlier blog post that we should reduce our use of the terms "government," and "the government." I believe these terms are inaccurate.

We should instead use the term The State, as this name focuses on the most important features of the institution most people mistakenly refer to as "the government." The State is a monopoly that uses coercion to achieve its goals. Some of these goals may serve a governmental function, but most do not, and there are many sources of governmental services other than The State.

However, there is one potential problem with the use of the name The State. We also have smaller states, such as Texas, California, and Georgia. Thus, when you talk about The State some of your listeners may be tempted to ask you which state you have in mind. Increasingly, I am side-stepping this potential source of confusion by talking about The Federal State.