A Monopoly on Consequences

Barrett Brown
2 min readMay 2, 2020


A civilization or two

You may think the problem is that resources aren’t evenly distributed.

You may think the problem is that an armed state is the one doing the distribution.

You may think the problem is that resources shouldn’t be owned to begin with.

You may think the problem is that anyone would seek to decide that for anyone other than themselves.

All these questions are important, and so it saddens me to be among those few who cannot answer them with certainty.

But there’s something I can tell you with immense and happy confidence, thanks to the tens of millions of dollars that the US and UK and Norway have spent since 2011 to disrupt my work, discredit my research, raid my volunteers, spy on my donors, drive my friends to suicide, and imprison me for four peaceful years in which I did my best writing — and the bulk of my historical readings. And so I have had the exquisite opportunity to make inquiries into what mankind has done and what has resulted, and how much we know about this record because mankind is good and true, and how much we must doubt of same because mankind is wicked and false. These are things for which there are no shortcuts, and no room for those who wish to have the answers before they can expect to really know them.

And I can tell you several things, among which is this: your system can distribute anything or everything or nothing in terms of resources and taxes, and in a variety of ways, with a variety of result; but if there comes to exist a monopoly on consequences, such that the powerless can have their fill while the media and state and wealthy sometimes go years without so much as a taste, then revolution must be pursued via any means at all until every cop and reporter and congressman and CEO who for so long went thirsty has at long last had his turn at the cup.

And some turns will be longer than others, and many will drown — but drownings will plummet as a consequence, consequences being funny things indeed.