(Matt Luby is a great intern—works hard, writes well, is pleasant around the office. But after hiring him we discovered he has strikingly different political views than most of us [e.g., doesn't believe in government, like running water or roads or anything], even though he seemed normal when we interviewed him by phone. So here's a post by Matt—again, a great intern and swell fellow—about why we're wrong on everything. —Eds)

How does a guy from the Midwest who doesn’t even believe in government end up at a tax-loving, Big Government-endorsing paper in Seattle? Dominic asks me questions like that every time one of my opinions leaks out. The answer: You can blame Dan Savage and his podcast for turning me on to your paper and making it possible for me to befoul Slog with my presence, bien pensant lefties of blogosphere.

I had a nice Trojan horse thing going at first. Every time someone in the office would talk about police brutality or the war on drugs or the anti-war movement, I would emphasize my agreement with them. Every time someone in the office would talk about expanding government or voice anything but contempt for a politician, my earbuds would go in and I would shut up.

Then one day, the No on 1098 campaigned canceled on their SECB meeting at the last moment. Dominic asked one of us interns to stand in for them at the meeting. I believe all taxation is theft, so I immediately got a quarter-chub at this opportunity. But I slow-played it and nonchalantly said I would do it. Game on.

You've gotta understand my take: I hate the initiation of force. You do, too, to some extent. Maybe you don't love offensive wars. But what you probably don't care much about are the various forms of taxation, regulation, and prohibition that are accepted in our world. These things are only made possible by using government's "legitimate" monopoly on violence to initiate force against non-compliers. If I don't pay federal income taxes, eventually I will go to jail. If I don't get a driver's license, again there's that jail thing. If I turn my kitchen into a hamburger stand, the health people will shut me down. Fuck this shit—I didn't sign any constitution, I didn't consent to any of these laws, I was just born here. Now, if you like these things, I want you to have them, but have them in your own community and leave my community the fuck alone. You can call me crazy, but I am a crazy who poses no threat to you.

The meeting arrived.

More after the jump.

Everyone was expecting an ironic presentation of the No on I-1098 position from me, but I came out strong. So strong and so serious, in fact, that the SECB thought I was just taking the irony higher. Trojan horse intact.

Alas, my ruse was discovered last week. Dominic asked how I would vote on the initiatives. “Well, I’m not registered here,” said I. He pushed. “I actually don’t vote for philosophical reasons,” I replied. This is true, by the way. But again he pushed. Reluctantly I had to admit that I don’t believe in government and its concomitant, the initiation of coercive violence against peaceful people.

Alea iacta est. Or whatever the past tense of est (erat?) is.

The good thing is, now I can tell you why we were wrong about nearly every endorsement. Initiative 1107 is a great example. No got the endorsement because people on our staff think the state needs the tax revenue. Not because they believe candy and soda are evil, just because they think the state needs more money to pay for the mouth-breathers who rape my life with regulations to have nice pensions.

R-52 is another classic. The SECB did not like data showing that government job "creation" in fact kills jobs. They asked, “If taxpayers held onto this money, what sort of projects would they fund? How do we know jobs would be created at all?” Leave aside the vile, coercive nature of taxation. It was this basic misunderstanding of free exchange that got me. We don’t know what jobs would be created because there is no central planning in a true market. Jobs are created or expanded to accommodate consumer demand for marginal units of production.

The candidate endorsements are the easiest to address. I can’t even get angry about them. They are all sick paternalistic fucks who want to ruin my life through the wonders of public policy. Democrat, Republican, Libertarian—all of them are gleeful overseers of a bunch of happily-consenting slaves. Never again will I let my hands be bloodied and their consciences eased with the implicit consent to their actions offered by my vote.

Back in the office, they just asked me if I would like to cover Bill Clinton’s appearance in Everett on Monday. I told them I disliked all politicians, but agreed. Then Dominic said I chose a weird place for an internship. I have a new answer now—knowing I am not going to agree with the staff of any major American publication, I want to work with the best staff of writers willing to accept my unpaid labor. And hey, if this Seattle thing doesn’t work out, New Hampshire and the Free State Project are only three time zones away.