… is from page 194 of my colleague Bryan Caplan’s brilliant 2007 book, The Myth of the Rational Voter:
Last, it is not true that private action is inherently parasitic or dependent upon collective action. The existence of the black market proves that property rights and contracts are possible without government approval. That is why one drug dealer can meaningfully tell another, “You stole my crack” or, “We had a deal.” Indeed, the black market shows not only that property and contract can persist without the government’s support, but that they can survive in the face of its determined resistance.
DBx: For further evidence, see my colleague Pete Leeson’s 2008 book, The Invisible Hook: The Hidden Economics of Pirates.