Private Places Public Spaces

One concern that is frequently expressed about a stateless society is that people would lack the freedom of movement we have under the current circumstances.  Even assuming that places like sidewalks, roads and parks would no longer exist, I actually think that freedom of movement would be greater.

Two of my favorite places in the world are San Francisco and Las Vegas.  They could hardly be more different.  One is as close to socialism as anywhere in the United States.  The other is a bit of a free for all, where drinking, smoking and gambling are encouraged.

And, despite its all its public places, San Francisco feels restrictive.  Go where you will but follow the rules.  Go where you will but expect, in many instances, to be accosted by people you may not want to meet.  

And, while Vegas also has its own public places, it is in the private places where most people feel comfortable.  There are casinos and shopping centers that I rarely, if ever, patronize, which welcome me with open arms.  Outside of the time share people, you are most likely to feel uncomfortable and unwelcome in public places.

Public parks may be avoided because of undesirables.  Private businesses are likely to be frequented because they offer a greater feeling of safety and security.    Public places have every incentive to keep people out.  Private places have every incentive to keep people in.

So, ironically, the most open and democratic places are likely to be avoided.  Conversely, the most private places are most likely to be open to the public.  Where would you rather be at Midnight?  A public park?  Or Walmart?

So the most private of places are frequently the most public of spaces.  For a private concern, there is every incentive to encourage 99% of people to walk through.  In a public place, the remaining 1% are liable to leave the rest of the public feeling unsafe and uncomfortable.

In other words, I think this objection is nonsense.  The most private of places are, for the vast majority, going to be the most public of spaces.

Just back from vacation.  Should now be getting back to posting a couple of times a week so look for that.  Thanks for reading and have a great week!


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