Interview 1453 - Stephan Kinsella on Law Without the State

06/25/201918 Comments

Stephan Kinsella joins us today to discuss the concept of law without the state. Is law and order possible without a state? What would that look like? And just what is "the law," anyway? Find out more in this fascinating conversation on law, history, philosophy and anarchy.

Watch this video on BitChute / DTube / YouTube or Download the mp4


Corbett Report Radio 099 – Against Intellectual Property with Stephan Kinsella

Banking, Nation States, and International Politics by Hans-Hermann Hoppe

Do We Ever Really Get Out of Anarchy? by Alfred G. Cuzán

"Your Welcome" Podcast #55 - Lyn Ulbricht

Hans-Hermann Hoppe Bibilography

What It Means To Be an Anarcho-Capitalist

The Market for Liberty

Machinery of Freedom: Guide to a Radical Capitalism

The Structure Of Liberty: Justice And The Rule Of Law

Chaos Theory

The Enterprise of Law: Justice Without the State

For A New Liberty

Libertarian Anarchy: Against the State

Filed in: Interviews
Tagged with:

Comments (18)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. n4x5 says:

    It’s noteworthy how much of this is still in the realm of the theoretical, without strong consensus even among anarchist / libertarian-minded people, to say nothing of the lack of interest and agreement of the wider public. A sub-one-hour discussion really only hints at all the nuances and difficulties involved. The resources in the show notes are a decent start for digging deeper, of course. Although I suggested it previously in a past episode, I’ll reiterate my recommendation for The Law of the Somalis by Michael van Notten here also.

    The conversation touches on the matter of incarceration. I’ll just mention the Brazilian prison run by the inmates as a novel approach. Supposedly, this unconventional facility without guards works well for rehabilitation, but only with the threat of lockup in a hellish traditional prison to discourage escape and recidivism. Not that this is the answer nor is it law without the state. Just something interesting that I thought I’d share.

    • mkey says:

      Thanks for that reference to the voluntary prison system. I found it very ridiculous that “faith is compulsory” for inmates, but overall that system looks to be 1000x more efficient than state/corporate run gulag-esque facilities.

  2. brian.s says:

    The underlying idea here is Living Law as distinct from a static or systemic law.
    Living law is within us and extends to others as ourself.
    Systems are imposed and incentivised by an ‘external god or power’ – maintained by worth-ship through sacrifice.
    We sacrifice the Living to terms and conditions arising from acquired and inherited experience.
    This is such a second nature as to make our original nature invisible or intolerable to a sense of possession and control that is maintained by mutually agreed belief and definitions that are also hidden or tacitly acted from as if Reality.
    Hence we have a split mind and world of love-hate in which love turns to hate the moment its conditions are unmet and so it is not love but a form of deferred or repackaged hate set in terms of personal and social acceptance.
    Social agreements operate consciously in part, but mostly run beneath consciousness, and so do not seem to be an agreement but a subjection or coercion. Agreement to be victim is not generally open to awareness or else grievance would have no basis as the basis for seeking and expressing power over our wills and over the wills of others.

    Genuine communication of self-honesty is not within or limited to words. Everything we think and feel and do ‘communicates’ – and so to maintain an integrity instead of succumbing to the deceit and disintegration of a split mind is the willingness to look within to discern the situation in terms of its living context.

    To think about law in world-terms is to think about power or possession in the same terms. All these qualities have been corrupted by the ‘doublethink’ of the split mind and so any attempt to fit the Living law of love’s honesty into disconnected or derivative symbolic definitions is to invite entanglement in conflict and controversy or power struggle of victim and victimiser.

    Hearing and speaking in the willingness for truth and sanity cannot be the fitted into a coercive and hateful demand – and yet such a demand arises from grievance that therefore also needs to be heard for its true need and call.

    There is no culture for Justice in a world hellbent on vengeance – but there is an idea and willingness for order in which Life can flower and be itself.

    Caesar or the ‘State’ is the blind systemic law of penalty for transgression – corrupted or developed as a weapon or tool of enslavement and control.
    Insofar as we call it law and not tyranny – it has to be seen to serve the whole – and not some narrative spin of protection from evils – working a hidden agenda under guise of righteousness.

    We can perhaps see this in our current corporate technocracy but are less able and willing to notice it in ourselves. Re-aligning in the law of our being is our freedom and true ability of love or relational response as distinct from conditioned identity reaction.

    [SNIP – Please keep comments to 500 words or less. -JC]

  3. cooly says:


    Making a legalized fraud industry the new arbiters of society?

    What else would he suggest? Giving Thurston Howell the last word at the end of every episode of Gilligan’s Island?

    • Fawlty Towers says:

      I’m assuming you are referring to the part where he talks about about mandatory insurance for all in the anarchist society?

      That jumped out at me too.

      For starters, how does everyone pay for this insurance?
      How much is it? What would it cover exactly?

      WHO are the insurance bodies?
      Surely not the existing ones (fraud industry)?
      Will they be businesses or non-profit?

  4. arcadia11 says:

    i was fine-ish until he brought up the un. slightly socialist. agenda 21/2030 etc is the slightly socialist agenda for the 21st century for the whole world the population of which must be reduced by at least 85% which is being accomplished by poisoning the water, food, air, soil, bodies, minds of all living things – that slightly socialist un? blimey. turned it off at the point to get a breath of fresh air – changed my mind because it is totally chemtrailed here…

  5. 4TLeser says:

    Thanks James,
    for setting the UN characteristic straight as it is, not as some may perceive.
    UN is the visible entity standing in to give Global Governance the credibility it does nor deserve.
    UN is the enemy of the people, true and simple

    • joris says:

      Very true 4Tleser!

      Many people don’t scratch off he varnish of these international organisations. Typically because they have the worldview that government is actually looking out for them.
      While typically 90% of the people working in government are well-intended people, it’s the 10% people who are there to serve a total different interest. Which is that of a group of satanists, power-hungry psychopaths who want to destroy everything what is beautiful and the proof of the inner beauty of life. Because they got so traumatized that they can’t see this beauty without feeling the endless rage swell in them.

      My answer to start opening people their eyes again is teaching children to think rationally and think for themselves.

      Why do you think that government and religious organisations have been taking care of education? Children are very open to suggestion and once you have a certain view of the world, the ego doesn’t allow any challenging information in, because that would require to acknowledge the fact that the ego has been tricked before and can be tricked again.

      And the ego doesn’t want to be fallible and/or imperfect.

  6. Libertydan says:

    Talk about talking in circles, eh! Does this guy live in the real world? So, he has a Law Degree and doesn’t know that the U.S. Federal Income Tax is a Tax on Government Privileged Income which most people do not have to pay. Indeed, there is no Law that would require a Laborer to Pay Federal Income Tax. In fact the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that Labor is not Taxable. Yet, if anyone who is not required to pay the Tax can be deceived into signing a 1040 Tax Return (which is a Contract) then they owe the money by Contract Law. In other words, we live in a land of consent by deception, or as the man would have it “Contract Law”.
    Ignorance of the Law is no excuse, yet lies deceit and deception are everywhere. The Courts in this country run a con game. So where is the Justice?
    The 7th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states that I am entitled to a Jury Trial when they are attempting to extort more than $20. I asked for a Jury Trial in writing and did not get one. Well, it turns out I have no Rights in the Corporate Court (look for the yellow fringes surrounding the Flag in the Court Room). Yep, I was deceived into showing up for a Summons to a Court that had no Jurisdiction over me, and then consented to no Jury just by being there, and a fine that well exceeded $20. It is interesting to note that the Court wrote it up as a $20 fine plus court costs, that were triple the fine.
    Truth and Transparency will add up to Justice, but only if enough people embrace it. We must not give in to implied consent, and we must not be complacent when we see lies, deceit and evil acts carried out on others.
    Freedom does have a price, and it begins with seeking the truth.

  7. scpat says:

    Stephen knows what he is talking about regarding law and I enjoy listening to his other talks. However, I was a bit disappointed because he seemed to dance around some of the pointed questions and gave long, drawn-out responses with multiple different points — each of which could be commented on — but he just kept talking so there were no opportunities for James to respond. One other thing I noticed was Stephen’s use of we. We anarchists; Libertarians believe; etc. He should speak for himself more. I critique Stephen because I like him, not trying to beat up on him.

    Another thing to mention…this is just one man’s idea of what law could look like in a stateless society, not what it has to look like.

  8. joris says:

    First disclaimer: I din’t watch the whole interview, I got to the point were Stephan explained how law isn’t a monopoly of the state.

    So I wondered if any of you guys have come across the International Tribunal for Natural Law? Because they break down law just as I do when I teach or educate children: don’t do harm to others.

    They are doing a tremendous work for exposing the international nature of child sexual abuse and human trafficking.

    Follow this link to see their commission hearing and very powerful testimonies given there, since 2015.

  9. Phillip says:

    Once again, we have a white guy, a lawyer no less, who thinks OJ killed his ex-wife and her friend, the waiter/drug dealer, Ron Goldman. I find this to be the Final Frontier in the non-MSM community. People tend to believe the MSM OJ-did-it story for two reasons, not necessarily in this order: racism and belief in MSM/government propaganda.

    Some excellent books are (titles, followed by A*****n links):

    Legacy of Deception: An Investigation of Mark Fuhrman & Racism in the LAPD

    Killing Time: The First Full Investigation into the Unsolved Murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman

    When Prosecutors Attack!: OJ Simpson, Roderick Scott, George Zimmerman – Baseless Government Attacks and the Media That Lets It Happen

    • n4x5 says:

      It is straying from the main topic of the conversation, but I don’t think it hurts to inject some skepticism about the official version of events of the OJ case here. I’ll add a few of my own suggestions.

      Stephen Singular is an investigative journalist whose involvement with the case goes back to the time of the trial.

      Porkins Policy Radio ep. 47: Legacy of Deception: Stephen Singular on the OJ Simpson murder trial

      Porkins Policy Radio ep. 49: Conspiracy of Misperception: Stephen Singular on the OJ Trial

      Tim Kelly and Joe Atwill had a conversation a couple weeks ago on the OJ case. Apparently, at one point, Joe lived not far from the site of the murders.

      Our Interesting Times: The OJ Simpson Murder Trial

      • Phillip says:

        While you may be straying from the main topic of this particular interview, one of James’ perennial topics is “propaganda”. The promotion of “OJ did it” is a prime example of MSM propaganda. Stephen Singular speaks eloquently in one of the interviews you cite about the importance of the OJ story in the history of MSM propaganda. It was the first cable news 24/7/365 story wherein a specific narrative was relentlessly hammered into our brains, night after night.

        I believed in OJ’s guilt until I finally looked at the facts of the case. I had to ask myself whether racial prejudice played a role in my failure to question the MSM propaganda, despite the not guilty verdict in the criminal trial.

        This story could serve as a topic of James’ propaganda series, particularly as the facts of the case are so obvious, and the propaganda so blatant and persistent.

  10. Fantasy of Nothing says:

    This is one of my favorite interviews by James. He should generally to do more the challenge the ideas put forward with those he interviews.
    The ancap discussion really needs to include regarding the power of large corporations, on a global scale, or even ones that can dominate a smaller region. We see large corporations controlled by a few, unaccountable to the public now.
    We certainly can’t assume such institutions will not become a defacto-state unless measures are taken to prevent it. These concerns need to be seriously considered for ancaps to be taken seriously.

  11. BbobKS says:

    I don’t know how you could possibly conduct this conversation without including Admiralty and Maritime law as the basis of our just-us system !

  12. Ian Davis says:

    Very interesting discussion but I disagree with some of what Stephen said. I believe Stephen has missed the point of Natural/Common Law, which exists beyond (over and above) the realm of the state.

    Stephen is partially mixing two mutually exclusive concepts in my view.

    He states that the U.S constitution was written and therefore novel. He also refers to the English Constitution which he says were ‘unwritten rules of how the government worked together.’ Adding that this is a problem because, if you rely upon the state for your Law it lends itself to law by decree of the state. This is a misunderstanding of the implications of a Lawful Constitution in my view.

    When the original Magna Carta was agreed in 1215 it was a binding contract between the people and the Crown. King John didn’t ‘sign’ the Magna Carta. His signature was not required. What was needed was the Great Seal of the Crown because the Crown only existed by virtue of the extant Coronation Oath which was the ‘custom of the people.’ The Crown exists by agreement of the people. The rule of law is established through the Crown because the Crown itself is a contract with the people. The people rule in other words.

    In order for a constitution to be ‘codified’ it must be ‘authoratative,’representing a higher law than mere legislation. It must be ‘entrenched,’ virtually impossible to amend or abolish, and it must be ‘judiciable,’ meaning other laws can be judged against it to determine if they are constitutional. The original Magna Carta meets all of these criteria. It is the written constitution of the Britons (& Anglo Saxons).


    Therefore the Magna Carta, the basis for the 1689 Bill of Rights and the subsequent U.S constitution, is a written ‘codified’ constitution which exists over and above the state by virtue of compact (contract) of, by and amongst the people.

    This is why, from the moment of its creation, governments of all persuasions have done everything they can to hide, obfuscate and ignore this very inconvenient fact. For example, as soon as the Magna Carta was signed Pope Innocent III issued a papal bull annulling the Magna Carta. This is something the deniers of the true constitution of the Britons constantly refer to. Herein lies the heart of the deception. The Papacy was not a signatory to the Magna Carta ‘contract’ and, like government, had no authority over it. The annulment was a ‘legality’ and meaningless because the Magna Carta is the Law of the Land which stands above the law of the church (and God’s law which is a religious interpretation Natural Law which knows no theology.)

    [SNIP – Please keep comments to 500 words. Longer comments can be broken up into multiple comments. – JC]

    My post:

    My post:

    The Common Law Courts:

    The British Constitution Group:

    The New chartis Movement:

    Also I highly recommend reading Ken d’Oudeney Democracy Defined: The Manifiesto

  13. Ian Davis says: . . . continued

    (sorry James, I’ll get the hang of it.)

    I think Stephen has confused ‘codified constitution’ with Law under statute. They are not necessarily the same thing. Though arguably the U.S constitution is such an arrangement. I do not say this to make some sort of jingoistic point but rather to suggest that legislation has nothing whatsoever to do with it and it cannot be amended by legislation nor government, religious proclamations nor intergovernmental policy.

    I agree that the legal system we have (both sides of the pond) is ‘law by decree’ of the state. But the point he has missed, in my view, is that this is not Law. It is statute (legality) which is entirely separate from the concept of Law (Natural/Common Law.)

    He states that the role of the Judge is to ‘do justice.’ And that the point of law is to deliver ‘justice.’ This isn’t the role of judges in either statute or Common Law. In statute law their role is to protect the contractual ‘corporate’ interests of the state in conflict with the corporation that is the ‘person’ (lost at sea – dead) in the dock. In all circumstances statutory courts are a place of business, not law. The ruling of legal judges couldn’t be further removed from the notion of justice. This is not to say they are incapable of delivering justice only that justice is not a requirement.

    In the constitutional rule of law (Common Law) the term ‘Judge’ has no meaning. That was a statutory (Witan) change from the correct term ‘convenor.’ The role of the convener is merely to administer the ruling of the jury. The jury and only the jury are the arbiters of justice. Justice is determined from their unanimous agreement on the application of Natural Law (‘judicium parium’ government by trial by jury.)

    Therefore the basis for anarchy of all types (as reflected by the international law discussion) already exists. It is the Common Law which, by definition, is the rule of the people not government.

    So how could anarchy take hold in wider society if it is reliant upon law when this appears a contradiction from the outset? As illustrated by the Magna Carta you don’t need a ‘government’ to establish an agreed compact. It represents a constitutional arrangement which is agreed by all people as only the people are named parties (ie. The people had already agreed their ‘will and custom’ to form the Crown.) The confusion comes because we now refer to the Crown as the Head of State, whereas the Crown is itself only a contract between the people (the Coronation Oath.)

    Therefore the basis for an anarchist society could be built upon such an agreement (a constitution.) A state is not required to enforce that constitution it merely needs to be agreed by the people. Thereafter the communities living under the constitution would be free to self-organise as they see fit. The agreed constitution would be the only Law, based upon Natural Law (do no harm.)

    When disputes arise various communities may have different methods of resolution and remedy (that would be up to them.) However, the ‘might is right’ principle couldn’t be maintained in any community, regardless of any ‘legal system’ they choose to adopt. If an imbalance of power ever causes harm to anyone that would be ‘un-Lawful’ under the constitution.

    The harmed party could always seek remedy under the agreed, and predetermined, Rule of Law. Therefore there would be no point in ever establishing a legal system in any community where the injustice we see today is enshrined by local ‘statute.’ That could be overturned by anybody if it contravened the harm principle of Natural Law.

    There are some links in the linked comment above if you are interested.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Back to Top