Maricopa County, Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio is literally roasting prisoners alive. Temperatures inside the tents at the prison camp the Sheriff operates are reaching 145°F. By way of comparison, a round of roast beef is said to be medium-rare when it reaches a core temperature of 130°F to 140°F.
Obviously, this is a horrific crime on the part of the Sheriff and all working for him. While it’s common to label such abuses under statism as an aberration, both the ovens of Maricopa County and Dachau are logical consequences of the perverse economic incentives of monopoly government.
The entire punishment-based approach to justice, including punishment for victimless non-crimes such as drug use or being Jewish, is an example of the Misesian calculation problem in the context of the state’s monopoly of law. Abuses such as Arpaio’s are an inevitable result so long as monopoly government is in place.
Market anarchists correctly recognize genuine crimes to be best understood as torts. Any genuine offense is an offense precisely because it’s an injury to someone else who did not deserve it. If some behavior could not be treated as a tort, it is injustice to treat it as a crime. No victim, no crime.
Flowing from the above is the understanding that justice is not punishment but compulsory restitution. Yet without a free market for adjudication of disputes, the monopoly state has no way to find rational price information for compensation of victims — no more so than Soviet central planners could figure out a rational price for a loaf of bread that would keep bread on the shelves without terror.
The state, any state, is in all cases economically blind and can’t calculate. As a result, the state must maintain the pretense that arbitrary punishment is justice, instead, and insulate those who carry it out from the liability costs for their criminal (i.e. tortious) actions that a free market would place upon them.