A Revolting Itch: Pseudolaw as a Social Adjuvant

Donald J. Netolitzky; “A Revolting Itch: Pseudolaw as a Social Adjuvant

“Pseudolaw is a collection of legal-sounding but false rules that purport to be superior laws suppressed by conspiratorial actors. Pseudolaw replaces conventional law. Modern pseudolaw emerged around 2000 in right-wing and often racist US Sovereign Citizen communities, but has subsequently spread world-wide to groups with diverse political, racial, economic, and social objectives. Pseudolaw purports to shift authority away from state and institutional actors and to individuals, and is attractive to dissident groups who resist conventional authority. Pseudolaw is politically agnostic since pseudolaw does not change or create the ideologies and objectives of these dissident groups, but instead empowers them. Pseudolaw aggravates interactions between its host populations and conventional government, court, and law enforcement actors. As pseudolaw expanded outside of its Sovereign Citizen incubator, pseudolaw ceased to be sequestered knowledge taught by gurus and held by privileged groups. Pseudolaw has merged into the cultic milieu: a collection of rejected and marginal ideas, resources, and history. A broad range of conspiratorial and outsider communities and individuals mine the cultic milieu. In this context pseudolaw has become a separate legal system available to those who seek a different explanation for law, and the extraordinary privileges and immunities that pseudolaw falsely promises.”