The Coercive Mind

by Samuel Edward Konkin III
[email protected]

Special to L. Neil Smith’s The Libertarian Enterprise

(to the tune of Peter, Paul, and Mary’s Blowing in the Wind.)
[*ahem* written by Bob Dylan — Victor Koman]
[Found in New Libertarian Notes 7, February, 1972, while I was indexing the entire run for The Agorist Archives — Victor Koman]


ow many ways can the State find to take
The life of individual man?
Yes, and how many taxes will be imposed
Before nothing’s left in his hand?
Yes, and how much of the press will be censored
Before all reading is banned?
The answer, I find, lies in the coercive mind,
And how long the people can stay blind. 

2. How many times can welfare be sought,
Before man loses more of his wealth?
Enslaving doctors in Medicare,
As declines supply of service for health?
Yes, and how much more inflation can be employed
To confiscate our savings by stealth,
The answer, I find, lies in the coercive mind,
And how long the people can stay blind.

3. How many years can the burden be borne,
Before we remove the parasite?
Yes, and how many wars will be fought in foreign lands,
Before it is our own State we fight?
Yes and how much longer will we grovel for gifts,
Before arising to demand Man’s Right?
The answer, I find, lies in the coercive mind,
And how long the people can stay blind.

Editor’s note: Victor Koman posted this on Facebook. Knowing Sam’s views on copyright, I immediately grabbed it. (He [a publisher] and J. Neil Schulman [an author] used to argue endlessly about copyright, neither one changing the other’s view.) Victor added the following note:

I’m posting this filk song that Sam wrote in 1972, not for its artistry or scansion, but to show that — even though half a century(!) has passed — nothing has really changed, but maybe has gotten worse. We are taxed even more expropriatively, it’s now the media censoring everyone else, doctors are even more enslaved by regulations, health care is more expensive and less available, inflation continues to be used to devour the middle class, we’re still fighting foreign wars, and many are looking to The State for a few hundred dollars in relief checks while crony socialists increase taxation & deficit spending to sluice trillions to their favored boondoggles and pressure groups.

And what are the (surviving) protest singers from those years doing? Telling their juniors to STFU and support the elites while they play their musty old songs in the Rose Garden.


Reprinted from New Libertarian Notes for February, 1972

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