Do you want to know if someone is a Statist?
Have them read the story of Ronald Melocchi of West Newton, Pennsylvania. Mr. Melocchi was arraigned on Thursday on one third-degree and three first-degree felony counts as well as 53 misdemeanor counts. Mr. Melocchi finds himself in this situation because he operated and profited from an illegal video poker gambling ring.
Mr. Melocchi operated a non violent business enterprise that relied upon voluntary participation from willing patrons. He is most likely facing time in prison because he supplied a service that the public demanded.
If an individual reads that story and reacts in any manner other than saying, “Wow, that’s horse crap. Why isn’t gambling legal?”, then they are a force-loving Statist!
Of course, those of us that understand the State to be, as Murray Rothbard would say, a “gang of thieves writ large” see the situation clearly. The State is protecting its interests.
Melocchi was taken down by a multi-year investigation into his video gaming business. Throughout the course of the investigation it was exposed that Melocchi was contributing to several political campaigns. The investigation uncovered that one politician, Mark Gergely, was delivered a fabricated letter from a female agent of the State fingering Mr. Melocchi’s gambling machines as the reason her husband lost all their money. Gergely was then recorded saying to Melocchi that, “She obviously has no idea that we have a connection.”
In order to determine the State’s motivation behind the investigation and indictments, all you have to do it follow the money. Slot machines and table games became legal in Pennsylvania recently. The new casinos are lining the pockets of the State. The State is sending a clear message: If you mess with our gambling gravy train, you will pay dearly.
The State must act in this manner in order to protect their lifeblood. Murray Rothbard hit the nail on the head in Anatomy of the State, where he discusses what the State fears.
We may test the hypothesis that the State is largely interested in protecting itself rather than its subjects by asking: which category of crimes does the State pursue and punish most intensely – those against private citizens or those against itself? The gravest crimes in the State’s lexicon are almost invariably not invasions of private person or property, but dangers to its own contentment, for example, treason, desertion of a soldier to the enemy, failure to register for the draft, subversion and subversive conspiracy, assassination of rulers and such economic crimes against the State as counterfeiting its money or evasion of its income tax. Or compare the degree of zeal devoted to pursuing the man who assaults a policeman, with the attention that the State pays to the assault of an ordinary citizen. Yet, curiously, the State’s openly assigned priority to its own defense against the public strikes few people as inconsistent with its presumed raison d’tre.
The State is addicted to the gambling revenue they steal from casinos. Once the State gains an avenue to coerce money from businesses or individuals, they never again cede the revenue back to the righfull owners.
The State should be removed from the regulation of gambling – a voluntary activity between willing participants – and from all other victimless activity.
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