If you and I am sharing the same domain then each of us has a moral right to a say in how that domain is administered. Thus, it logically follows that in a single geOgraphical area all the residents are entitled to a say in how that area is run. By "say", of course, we mean participating in the making of decisions on an equal footing with any other resident. This is the meaning of the word "government": consultative action by all persons in an area to meet their common shared needs.

Thus, all persons in an area are to be considered in the administration of that area. Furthermore since many of the common shared needs are matters of life, health, and safety of people in the area then no subgroup has any moral right to dissociate itself from the other residents in order to follow their own desires in meeting those needs. One only has to cite fire protection, sewerage systems and waste management, and restraint of violent persons as examples of such life, health and safety matters in which all residents of an area have a shared need. And insofar as the actions of any person or group impinge on other residents, then that is also a matter of common need and concern.

This does not mean, however, that such a unified government to meet such needs may legitimately coerce the residents into any kind of service for that government. In order to maintain such services as it provides, a government may legitimately require from all persons who benefit from those services some form of tax, fee, or donation. But conversely it may not legitimately require any such fee, tax or donation from any who do not benefit from those services, even if they reside in the same area. Neither may it conscript its residents into any kind of involuntary labor whatsoever without the express assent of each resident so conscripted, no matter what need is asserted. This follows because involuntary servitude is slavery and the only moral service is that which is freely given. And it is worst when the labor for which residents are conscripted involves the perpetration of violence on any persons, within or without the community. To claim that each resident has an obligation to "fight" for the territory is to claim an obligation which does not exist, unless each resident expressly assents to that obligation for himself or herself.

However, within an area or a territory residents may voluntarily associate for any purposes which they share as individuals, save where such purposes would conflict with the life, health, and safety matters being managed by the unified government. Such associations are not "governments", however, they are associations for the purpose of achieving some preferential goal not shared by other residents in the area. Some associations may arise because of concern that the unified government is failing to accomplish its purposes, and if a government is in fact failing to accomplish its purposes then it has no claim over any of the residents in the area or domain. But associations which form out of merely a preference for doing things differently have no moral value over the unified government if that government is either accomplishing its purposes or is endeavoring honestly to meet its goals.

Now it should be noted that the government exists and functions for the purpose of meeting particular needs, and has no moral authority for doing more than meet those needs. Its authority for its functioning stems from its involvement of all residents and its organization to deal with shared common needs in matters of life, health and safety. But the individuals in an area are morally free to pursue their own lives without interference or regulation other than in matters of life, health, and safety for the protection of other residents; and also in matters affecting all residents such as streets and street lighting exploitive use of land or humanpower, and commerce and transportation.

It should also be noted that governments create regulations over people's affairs in areas other than direct matters of life, health, and safety because individuals generally do not see all the consequences of their actions which either harm or adversely affect other residents. Only a joint or unified government of all persons in an area, in which each resident has a say, can possibly be aware of all such adverse consequences. No separatist group intermingled within the territory can be counted on to so be aware and to deal with those consequences and whenever they were it would still be necessary for them to confer with other residents not part of their association to handle the problem. Thus no purpose would be served by creating such a separatist association.

(originally published under the name of John Fitz)