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Rational Anarchy: An Analysis of the theme given by Professor Bernard De La Paz In Robert A. Heinlein's 'The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress'
In his 1966 novel, The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, science-fiction Grand Master Robert A. Heinlein relates how the inhabitants of a colony on the moon carry out a revolution with the aid of a self-aware computer.. During a discussion leading up to the start of the revolution, one of the characters, Professor De La Paz, describes his political philosophy to fellow conspirators, Manuel O’ Kelly and Wyoming Knott.
De La Paz states that he is a rational anarchist:
“A rational anarchist believes that concepts such as ‘state’ and ‘society’ and ‘government’ have no existence save as physically exemplified in the acts of self-responsible individuals. He believes that it is impossible to shift blame, share blame, distribute blame … as blame, guilt, responsibility are matters taking place inside human beings singly and nowhere else. But being rational, he knows that not all individuals hold his evaluations, so he tries to live perfectly in an imperfect world … aware that his effort will be less than perfect yet undismayed by self-knowledge of self-failure.”