Albert Jay NockAlbert Jay Nock, (1870-1945) American libertarian author, editor, educational theorist, Georgist, social critic

Albert Jay Nock Quote

“It is interesting to observe that in the year 1935 the average individual's incurious attitude towards the phenomenon of the State is precisely what his attitude was toward the phenomenon of the Church in the year, say, 1500. ... it does not appear to have occurred to the Church-citizen of that day, any more than it occurs to the State-citizen of the present, to ask what sort of institution it was that claimed his allegiance.”

Albert Jay NockAlbert Jay Nock
~ Albert Jay Nock

Our Enemy, the State, c. 1935 (Delavan: Hallberg, 1983), p. 34

Ratings and Comments

KS, Queensbury,NY.

Hmmm....a good thought provoking statement but I would have to add that the "average individual" referred to in this statement is one who blindly pledges allegiance to The System.

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Anon    10/14/09

In other words, religions of yesterday are no different than religions of today (government) that are simply becoming secular in their doctrinal demands of worship and no more forgiving of 'heresy' then the churches and religions of the 1500's. The secular inqusition has begun but has yet to come out from behind its mask as most are still fooled enough not to notice its presence.

Mike, Norwalk

The statist theocracy that now infests this nation demonstrates the quote's accuracy.

Mike, Norwalk

The UN's annual report on global food security, just out, confirms that more than one billion people are starving world wide while the statist theocracies of this nation continue to make deserts out of the most productive farmland in the world. The atrocious crimes against humanity (fiscally, physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and in all ways) that are being propagated by the current statist theocracy are as - or more heinous and well accepted by programed patrons than by any religions atrocities in history.

Mike, Norwalk

It must be asked of the present state-citizen, what sort of institution it is that claims his allegiance when the world honors the head Obamanation that is so conceived and dedicated to the genocide of humanity through starvation, baby sacrifice and otherwise, annihilation of fiscal means to support one's self and family, enslavement of all mankind, and utter obliteration of all personal freedom, liberty and rights with a 'Peace Prize'

Waffler, Smith

I have never heard of a pledge of allegiance to the state uttered in this my free United States of America. Where does Mike for example get the verbiage that he utters. Our pledge is to the nation and the constitution. What is all of this talk about something called "the state". Can anyone tell me where it is or what it is. Institutions need to be looked at constanly. The middle age church may have been worse that the modern but the modern is better bad what with child abuse etc.

Mike, Norwalk

Waffler, how liberal of you. The 'State' to which the quote references is the organic ethos that now infests this nation as a statist theocracy (local to nationalist). Your claimed patronage reverence to such borg collective is allegiance in the supreme without a set pledge. FYI, the Jim Jones type patronage to dark age religion has been today refocused on the statist theocracy that has extinguished any remnant of a once great constitutional republic.

Waffler, Smith

I repeat for Mike's thick headedness "I have never heard of a pledge of allegiance to THE STATE, only to the NATION. I have no idea what he said in the above aforementioned gobbledegook.

Mike, Norwalk

Waffler, you're pridefully chosen ignorance has been well documented on this blog. The pledge of allegiance you allude to (a symbolic flag representing freedom and justice for all within the body representing the STATES united, of a republic, and a nation) is again a misdirection / off topic focus on something other than the quote. Of course you don't understand what I wrote with you're limited intellect perceiving it as only gobbledegook. You choose to be that which is unlawful, despotic, and tyrannical so that all else is incomprehensible.

jim k, Austin, Tx

" Government , even in it's best state, is but a necessary evil, in it's worst state an intorable one". Thomas Paine

J Carlton, Calgary

The State, Waffler, as it is commonly used refers to the Leviathan Government and all of it's bureaucratic entities that are in conflict with a Free Republic. This ever increasing cancer is destroying the nation.

E Archer, NYC

The common people really have no idea the immense power wielded by church and state. Custom and tradition are assumed to be truth. The hardest thing to see are the foundations of society -- except once they are removed. For example, what is the purpose of a man's tie? The authority of church and state is simply assumed by those brought up in those society's. Every Christian knows that the Greek gods were obviously mythological but would find it difficult to accept the same of their own religion. Same is true for most citizens in their home country in regards to their own government. It is obvious to me that humans can be easily conditioned to believe ANYTHING.

Mick, Manchester

The state in a capitalist society works in favour of capital and a privileged few to protect and maintain that privilege. Hence the mass unfairness in distribution of resources in the world.

E Archer, NYC

Communist rhetoric, Mick. Arrogant, authoritarian, and divisive, without taking responsibility for oneself, or respecting others. You declare war on labor and its fruits, and demand a piece of the pie without contributing to its production.

Nobody is buying that BS any more -- especially since it doesn't empower people in any way.


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