What is it to govern?—it is to control, regulate or something. The necessary questions that follow are: who governs?—what is to be governed? The big question following the aforementioned is: do we govern our individual life or is the Government to govern our lives?
What is it for an individual to govern his own life? For each of us to govern our own life is in following our individual rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness; i.e. controlling, regulating and directing our lives how we see fit. This is not to state that there is nothing that restricts what we may do, for self-governance is a principle to be applied and as a principle, it is to be applied to each one of us in society. This means that no one has the right to violate another’s rights – govern another through compulsion. Whatever one wishes to consume, act with voluntary partners, or pursue any professional/spiritual/personal (blending all three) is nobody else’s legal concern as long as their rights are not violated. Any action, without rights-violating, is voluntary. A corollary of this involves no one has to protect us from the negative consequences for our poor decisions; to embrace our individual rights is to be responsible for our actions. Rights violations can be legally punished.
What is it for the Government to govern an individual’s life? For the Government to govern our lives is by telling us what to do; i.e. controlling, regulating and directing each of us and how we live. Individual desires and especially rights are at best, a secondary concern and may be upheld or rescinded as deemed necessary. Whatever may be eaten or drank is that which is allowed; the same is true for pursuits of relationships or professional/spiritual/personal goals. What is allowed isn’t related to our preferences, but the preferences of State. We are not individuals, but merely pieces in a body politic. As mere pieces of the body politic, we may be shuffled and used as the body directed, that is the State dictates. We either obey, or are punished for not following how the body demands. This may be in outright bans and prohibitions, or more subtle manners such as fines to ‘nudge’ our other behavior. Acts may be compulsory. (The State/Government actually doesn’t ‘decide’ for it is nothing more than a collection of individuals who together have legal force behind them).
Can one govern another without rights-violations?—if so, in what context? There are two situations when one may govern another; 1) as an act of abdication in some degree, such as employment or any other agreement of voluntary authority-giving; 2) when dealing with our children. Neither one of these is absolute for in the voluntary giving of authority, it is limited to what is allowed and agreed upon; with children, it is the job of the parent to teach their child as he grows to become a self-sufficient individual interacting in society. The State, with the legal use of force uses compulsion. To keep its authority, it doesn’t want self-sufficiency and growth, but wants dependency and as a slave master to keep its subjects in perpetual servitude.
There is not a possible blending of the two for the principles are mutually exclusive; we are either sovereign in our own life, or the State may rule our life. To allow one non-right violating compromise is to violate the principle of self-sovereignty, thereby destroying the principle; only the standard that the compromise was to invoke remains – State-sovereignty.
Let us keep this in mind whenever we hear someone stating that we need the Government ‘to do’ things for us, guide us or otherwise tell us what is acceptable behavior, or in other words, when someone wants the Government to control, regulate and direct us. They ignorantly or maliciously seek to make us all mere subjects to their preferences that they project upon the State.