Somehow I have only just come on the work of Albert Jay Knock. I don’t know how I missed him, but I did and I’m now sharing a passage that leapt out at me when I read it this morning in his book 'Our Enemy, the State . Written in about 1934 it seems equally apposite today:
It is unfortunately none too well understood that, just as the State has no money of its own, so it has no power of its own. All the power it has is what society gives it, plus what it confiscates from time to time on one pretext or another; there is no other source from which State power can be drawn. Therefore every assumption of State power, whether by gift or seizure, leaves society with so much less power; there is never, nor can there be, any strengthening of State power without a corresponding and roughly equivalent depletion of social power.
See also this from Bertrand Russell, that I originally posted way back in 2007.