Hi, I’m Skyler.

Welcome to my website.
Who the hell am I?
Just a man.
And a husband.
And a father of 3.
Also a writer.
And a podcaster. (Join me?)
Sometimes a web designer.
But always a seeker of riches.
And the richness of life.
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My Latest Content 

    Skyler J. Collins (Editor) – Everything-Voluntary.com

  • People of Color, Benefits of Wealth, & the Ruling Class (34m) – Editor’s Break 079

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    Editor’s Break 079 has Skyler giving his commentary on the following topics: libertarianism and “people of color”; the benefits of being wealthy and how this either benefits or harms others; the essence of the ruling class; and more.

    Listen to Editor’s Break 079 (34m, mp3, 64kbps)

    Subscribe via RSS here, or in any podcast app by searching for “everything voluntary”.

  • The Essence of the Ruling Class

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    If you have government, you have a ruling class, by definition. No, I’m not talking about governance, the sort we see in managing property, a business, a charity, or any other private organization. A ruling class are those who calls themselves “government” or “the state“, or in some times and places “the church”, the organization(s) in society whose sole purpose of existing is to make and enforce rules, the first of which involve the generation of “revenue”. While that’s what the ruling class does, that’s not what the ruling class is. Here is the essence of what the ruling class is:

    The ruling class is the only group of people in society allowed to make and enforce claims without supporting evidence.

    Take a member of the non-ruling class (everyone else). Let’s call him John. John approaches me and tells me that I owe him money. Naturally, I inquire is to why he believes this. He tells me that because I’m wearing a blue shirt, I must pay him a fee.

    I inquire further, “Why must I pay you a fee just because I’m wearing a blue shirt?”

    He answers, “You’re in this area, and anyone wearing a blue shirt in this area must pay me a fee.” Then he lifts his own shirt to show me his gun. The decision is mine to either pay him his so-called “fee”, or risk getting hurt.

    We’ve all either been there, seen it, or heard about it. What’s actually occurring here is a mugging, or in more formal terms, an act of extortion. Typically there’s no pretense of justification (clothing), but just, “Give me your wallet!” John has no evidence that I owe him a fee just because I’m wearing a blue shirt. His claim is completely arbitrary and only supported by his supposed willingness to hurt me if I don’t pay him. To any observer, John is a criminal engaging in a criminal act.

    Let’s take another member of the non-ruling class. Let’s call him Dave. Dave approaches me and tells me that I owe him money. Once again, I inquire is to why he believes this. He opens his briefcase and shows me a loan agreement I made with his employer 12 months ago, which has come due. As I am always one to pay my debts, I hand him my debit card, which he swipes on his cell phone. He then prepares and signs documents declaring the loan paid in full, and we each go on our merry way. Dave is not a criminal, but rather, a businessman.

    Although both John and Dave initially claimed that I owed them money, John’s claim was made without any supporting evidence, while Dave’s was not. Dave had factual evidence to support his claim that I owed him money. John only had a gun.

    Now take a member of the ruling class. Let’s call him Officer Smaldiq. As I’m driving along the freeway minding my own business, a police cruiser gets behind me and turns on his red and blues, which equates to a demand to pull over. So I do.

    Officer Smaldiq approaches my vehicle and informs me that I was “speeding” and that he is going to write me a ticket. I inquire is to the purpose of the ticket, and he informs me that the ticket means I have to pay his organization a fine.

    I follow up, “I don’t understand, Officer Smaldiq, but why should I pay you anything. To my knowledge, I’ve done nothing wrong and owe you nothing.”

    He sighs, and responds, “You were traveling 85mph in a 70mph zone. The law calls that speeding, and since you were speeding, you’ll have to pay us a fine.”

    Then me, “Is it your claim that your law applies to me?”

    Him, “Yes, of course it applies to you. It applies to everyone in this area.”

    I scratch my chin, “Do you have personal, first-hand knowledge that the law applies to me just because I’m in this area?”

    Getting annoyed, he responds, “Yes, I do! Do you see this badge? That badge means I have authority to enforce the law in this area.”

    Me again, “I’m not asking what authority you have. Since you are claiming personal, first-hand knowledge, what evidence can you give me to support your claim that the law applies to me just because I’m in this area?”

    Getting triggered due to my asking him uncomfortable questions, he responds, “The law applies to everyone in this area, sir!”

    Me, “Aren’t you just repeating your claim without offering any supporting evidence?”

    At this point he puts his right hand on top of his gun holster and unbuttons it. He then demands that I exit the vehicle. Since it’s obvious that I risk getting shot if I don’t comply, I exit the vehicle.

    The preceding could unfold in any number of ways. I could have taken the ticket and then proceeded to question the prosecutor in like fashion. Or after the prosecutor chooses to proceed charging me without any evidence supporting his claim that his laws apply to me, question him and/or the officer on the stand, agitating all of them, and their colleague, the judge.

    Or, such questions can be directed at “city councils” or any number of bureaucrats or politicians or law professors or clergy who are claiming people must behave in certain ways, or pay them. In every case, their final resort to prove their claim that their laws apply will not be to provide any factual evidence, rather, it will be to pull their gun out and threaten me with it.

    So ask yourself, which of the two individuals above is more like members of the ruling class, John the mugger or Dave the businessman? There is no denying, without commiting grievous intellectual sin, that what sets the ruling class apart from the rest of society is their willingness and success to make and enforce claims without supporting evidence. Which begs the question, why are they so successful?

    Because people like you and I allow them to get away with it due to our ignorance, cowardice, and/or complacency.

  • Kids’ Choices, Heartless, Atheists and a Dying Child, & White Privilege (21m) – Editor’s Break 078

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    Editor’s Break 078 has Skyler giving his commentary on the following topics: giving kids choices and thereby improving their future; whether or not it is accurate to say that libertarians are heartless; how an atheist would answer a question about Heaven by their dying child; the existence of white privilege, in-group privilege, and political privilege; and more.

    Listen to Editor’s Break 078 (21m, mp3, 64kbps)

    Subscribe via RSS here, or in any podcast app by searching for “everything voluntary”.

  • Violence, Aggression, Gun Control, Talking Back, & Unschooling as Abuse (30m) – Editor’s Break 077

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    Editor’s Break 077 has Skyler giving his commentary on the following topics: are libertarians opposed to violence?; what he hates the most: aggression; why state gun control in any degree is a violation of the right to bear arms; whether or not children have a right to “talk back” to their parents, and the importance in doing so; why he unschools to hide his “abuse” of his children; and more.

    Listen to Editor’s Break 077 (30m, mp3, 64kbps)

    Subscribe via RSS here, or in any podcast app by searching for “everything voluntary”.

  • Becoming Libertarian, Feminism or Masculinism?, Childism (26m) – Editor’s Break 076

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    Editor’s Break 076 has Skyler giving his commentary on the following topics: the choices we make along the way in becoming a libertarian, anarchist, or voluntaryist; does he claim the label feminist or masculinist?; why neither of those hold a candle to the way children are treated in many societies, including his own; and more.

    Listen to Editor’s Break 076 (26m, mp3, 64kbps)

    Subscribe via RSS here, or in any podcast app by searching for “everything voluntary”.

  • Love of Wisdom, Robin Hood, Civilized Behavior, & Shadow Profiles (34m) – Editor’s Break 075

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    Editor’s Break 075 has Skyler giving his commentary on the following topics: what philosophy is, what wisdom is, what politics is; who Robin Hood was and why we need more ethical outlaws; why calling for gun control is not engaging in civilized behavior; the legitimacy of Facebook creating and maintaining “shadow profiles” in their database; and more.

    Listen to Editor’s Break 075 (34m, mp3, 64kbps)

    Subscribe via RSS here, or in any podcast app by searching for “everything voluntary”.

  • Feminism or Masculinism? Neither…

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    Bryan Caplan offered a non-argumentative definition of feminism in a February article. Therein he wrote:

    What would a non-argumentative definition of feminism look like? Ideally, feminists, non-feminists, and anti-feminists could all endorse it. If that’s asking too much, all these groups should at least be able to accept the proposed definition as a rough approximation of the position they affirm or deny. My preferred candidate:

    feminism: the view that society generally treats men more fairly than women

    What’s good about my definition?

    First, the definition doesn’t include everyone who thinks that our society treats women unfairly to some degree. In the real world, of course, every member of every group experiences unfairness on occasion.

    Second, a large majority of self-identified feminists hold the view I ascribe to them. Indeed, if someone said, “I’m a feminist, but I think society generally treats women more fairly than men,” most listeners would simply be confused.

    Third, a large majority of self-identified non-feminists disbelieve the view I ascribe to feminists. If you think, “Society treats both genders equally well,” or “Society treats women more fairly than men,” you’re highly unlikely to see yourself as a feminist.

    I really, really, really like this definition of feminism. I think it fits very well with my overall experience with feminists from various “waves”. According to this definition, you correctly identify as or are identified as a “feminist” if you believe that society generally treats men more fairly than women.

    Am I a feminist? No, I do not believe so. If I’m not a feminist, does that mean I’m a masculinist? Well, let us offer the same non-argumentative definition of feminism, but replace it with masculinism:

    masculinism: the view that society generally treats women more fairly than men

    That’s certainly something to think about, but no, I do not believe that I fit that definition. I suppose it would be most accurate to say that I am neither a feminist, nor a masculinist. What I am is somebody who believes that both men and women are treated unfairly, in different ways.

    Men were/are drafted into military service to be used as cannon fodder, biased against in a custody battle or domestic violence dispute, treated as a pedophile if they associate with children, portrayed as bumbling and foolish fathers in popular media, told to “man up” instead of receive real help for mental and psychological issues, expected to work the most dangerous jobs, have their need for physical touch viewed as sexual only, routinely have their genitals mutilated, assumed to be weak or incompetent if they choose to be a stay-at-home dad, et cetera.

    Women are constantly told they are victims, were/are considered property of their fathers and husbands, considered slutty if they show a desire for sex, presumed incompetent at many tasks commonly performed by men, required to wear top clothing (and cover up while breastfeeding), weren’t/aren’t allowed to vote in democratic government elections, often told they should prioritize the well-being of their husband and children over their own, have their insecurities over their bodies encouraged, communally pressured to bear children, et cetera.

    In light of the many and varied types of unfairness that both men and women endure today and have endured throughout history, I can’t say that one gender has been treated more unfairly than the other. Both are and have been treated like shit for the benefit of others.

    But maybe we can agree that the one group of people that is and has been treated the most unfairly… is children.

    Is there a word for the view that society generally treats adults more fairly than children? I can’t find one, but here’s a related word: childism. Chantel Quick wrote about this last September:

    Racism, classism, ableism, nationalism are all things so many of us want to understandably speak out on and bring awareness to, but hardly anyone wants to acknowledge where all the -isms begin, and that is childism: a systemic belief and prejudice against children on the ground of a belief that they are property and can (or even should) be controlled, enslaved, or removed to serve adult needs.

    In addition to the two open-ended lists above on how men and women are treated unfairly, children in general must also endure such routine injustices as having their bodily autonomy violated, their curiosity punished, their passions and interests disregarded, their need for expression and emotional release disrespected, their desire to work, earn money, and learn responsibility made illegal, forced to eat when they aren’t hungry, forced to participate in activities they dislike, forced to associate with people they hate or fear, et cetera. The list could go on, and on, and on…

    Goddamnit we humans sure have treated other humans like shit, especially our young. What the fuck is wrong with us? In any event, I’ve resolved to engage in childism no longer, and my children couldn’t be happier. Same goes for treating other men and women unfairly. Please consider doing likewise.

  • Fatherhood, Red & Blue, Backpage/Silk Road, Education vs. Schooling (22m) – Editor’s Break 074

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    Editor’s Break 074 has Skyler giving his commentary on the following topics: what fathers need to do so that their children will always talk to and confide in them; inconsistencies among right-wing (red) and left-wing (blue) politics regarding their views on government and gun control; a short look at the Backpage.com and Silk Road shutdowns; the difference between education and schooling; and more.

    Listen to Editor’s Break 074 (22m, mp3, 64kbps)

    Subscribe via RSS here, or in any podcast app by searching for “everything voluntary”.

  • Good Parenting, MYOB, Spitting Toddlers, & Russian Propaganda (28m) – Editor’s Break 073

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    Editor’s Break 073 has Skyler giving his commentary on the following topics: what good parenting is; why it’s important to mind your own business and how to balance that with community vigilance; how to deal with misbehavior, such as a toddler spitting on your face; the courage in sticking with your principles, especially when it means standing alone; whether or not we should be concerned with Russian propaganda and election meddling; and more.

    Listen to Editor’s Break 073 (28m, mp3, 64kbps)

    Subscribe via RSS here, or in any podcast app by searching for “everything voluntary”.

  • She Spat, Then I Spat

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    My three-year-old is full of life and has a great, fresh sense of humor. Her favorite word, if you ask her, is “fuck!” She uses it quite often, much to the delight of myself and her older siblings.

    Some of her favorite phrases are, “fuck’n’roll!”, “fuckaroni and cheese!”, and as of a few days ago her, “what the heck are you talking about?” has transformed into, “what the fuck are you talking about?”, always delivered with a smile and a gleam in her eye. (Alright, I helped her improve that last one, *snicker*.)

    A few weeks ago, she started spitting. This doesn’t seem uncommon for little kids. They eventually discover the process and she found some joy in it. So much so, that she thought she’d share it with me, and spit right on my face.

    I could have turned sour, and angry, and yelled at her, or slapped her, or spanked her, or put her in time-out, or some such other form of punishment to “teach” her that spitting on people’s faces is “wrong”.

    But I didn’t do any of that, not even the turning sour or angry bit.

    Rather, I playfully spit back, right on her face. What did she do?

    She took stock, and then let out a giggle! And then spat on my face again.

    I performed in kind. Then her again. Then me. Then her. Then me.

    Then she stopped. Both of our faces covered in each others’ spittle. Just dripping with it.

    She was done giggling, and was now wiping it off with a slight look of disgust, realizing her mistake.

    She hasn’t spit on my face, or anyone else’s face, since.

    I’d say the “problem” has been solved. It didn’t require any negativity or fear or shame. All it took was some playfulness, and she eventually realized that spitting isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. She satiated her curiosity (which is all it was in the first place), and moved on with her life.

    Every “misbehavior” we see in children can be solved in playful ways. Punishments are never required, and always lead to unintended consequences, much to the detriment of the child, their associates, and the rest of society.

    I stopped foolishly using punishment in the way I parent going on seven years now. If you feel like improving your relationship with your children and solving behavioral problems, let me know. I’m happy to help!