Modern civilization has seen many forms of government. The democratic state, the fascist state, the administrative state, and the authoritarian state all have had their turn.
But the administrative and authoritarian states are evolving into another form. The administrative state writes rules and regulations to control the lives of the citizenry. Most of that under a leftist ideological umbrella. It makes an effort, sometimes poorly, to rationalize its actions under democratic norms, as “for the greater good” and all that tommyrot.
The authoritarian states feels no need to engage in that sport. It rules by force or the threat of it. What we are seeing today is an amalgamation of the two. A pretense towards democratic norms with an itchy trigger finger in regards to the threat of force and even physical coercion. It could be called The Coercive State.
A prime example is the debate over mandatory vaccinations. The Biden administration and its adherents are proposing, step by step so as not to wake the bear, to forcibly vaccinate those who will not voluntarily become vaccinated. Do they understand they are contemplating physical coercion? Literally hauling off to government facilities moms, dads, the elderly, single people, many going against their will and thus possibly in restraints?
What if the aforementioned won’t go and defend themselves against the Covid Gestapo? Will there be an armed Vaccine Response Team? Will a SWAT team be called out against the family across the street because dad won’t let mom be taken to the government vaccine facility without a fight?
Such a regime has dropped all association with the social contract. Locke, Hobbes, even Rousseau, be damned. Their modus operandi is the cry of the exasperated parent, “Because we told you so.” The problem is, in a free society, government is not our parents.
The administrators of the Coercive State see themselves as holy monks on a mission. They are strange monks, as they do not worship God. Their faith is in the coercive power of government. And they are sure they’re right.
You’ve met the types before. Their cold eyes gleam with the psuedomoral fervor of medieval clerics. They are modern Torquemadas. No infidel should suffer life, lest they infect the holy who have been saved by the state. If the infidel won’t bend knee to the Lord state, then they will be racked, burned, or hung. In today’s context, they will be dragged to a vaccine facility and have foreign substances injected into their bodies. Thus they will know the glory of the religion of the state, of the coercive power government can bring to their lives.
But the state may be in for a surprise. Some tasked to execute coercion may rebel. Out of love of freedom, individual rights, perhaps a loyalty to the old Republic, many may refuse to go door to door to haul their friends and neighbors away to be injected. What then? The answer to that lies as much in 2021, as it does in events 160 years ago.