William Godwin , the founder of philosophical anarchism,  believed that government was a "necessary evil" but that it will become increasingly unnecessary and powerless by the gradual spread of knowledge. Godwin warned individuals against the possible evils of government and to be vigilant against what he considered "an usurpation upon the private judgment and individual conscience of mankind." Godwin believed that the government should be tolerated "as little of it as possible, and carefully ... observed" as people evolved in terms of intellectual and social abilities to interact with each other. The 19th century individualist anarchist Victor Yarros also stated a typical philosophical anarchist position when he said,
One tool we use for finding consent in larger groups is consensus . Most anarchist decision-making is built around this method. Consensus is a way of determining what everyone in a group is comfortable with doing. “Do we want to blockade this building?” “Do we want to sign our group’s name on this public letter?” “Do we want to publish this book?” A group that respects the autonomy of every individual within it will generally act via consensus in some form or another. Some people mistake consensus to be basically the same as voting but where everyone agrees instead of a majority. This thinking however, is still built around voting, which is a form of competitive decision-making that is not designed to respect people’s autonomy. Consensus, instead of being a way to convince everyone to agree to the same plan, is a way of exploring what the logical limits of any given group are. If all members of a group cannot agree on a specific action, then it clearly needs to take place outside of that group, if at all. Unlike consent on an individual level, however, it is not always the case that a group seeking consensus needs everyone to be enthusiastic about the given action, and “standing aside” on a decision is common and respectable behavior.