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Muhammadabbadabba
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 2:57 pm 
 

I'm not too keen on Anarchism (as a matter of fact, I only know from what I've read from a Wiki article).

From that article, I could only conclude that it is aligned on the far-left, but to be honest, I'm not sure what to think of it.

Could somebody please discuss Anarchism and actually explain what it is...as layman as possible?

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Andar
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 3:47 pm 
 

It's not a leftist movement because Anarchism is generally opposed to this thing called the state. I myself don't really call myself an "anarchist" mostly because I can't really walk the walk at this point in my life, but I do like a number of the theories. And Anarchism has a fairly broad spectrum beliefs ranging from a very individualist stance to a very collectivist one. I lean more to the latter on these issues mostly because I still think we as human beings are social creatures and any issues with people are probably more my own than someone imposing me.

Anarchism is in a nutshell opposed to hierarchy and the systems it creates. All of it. Social, economic, religion, gender, race, political, you name it. It also generally strives for a stateless society, no matter which adjective you ascribe to it. I can personally get down with that. Sure it's very idealistic, but it's kind of like "Shooting for the stars so at least you can hit the top of the trees."

Really, if it interests you, you should really read what writers have written and just think about it and discuss it in a face to face setting with people. For a broad spectrum of standpoints I'd recommend Bakunin for a collectivist perspective, Kropotkin, Emma Goldman, and Nestor Makhno for their views on very pro-worker anarcho-collectivism, Godwin and Stirner for a dose of hyper individualism (not my cup of tea, they're basically free marketers) and Bookchin. Keep in mind a number of the older stuff was written in a time when issues of race, gender, and the environment weren't really on the table so when anything is said about those issues (especially by Stirner and Godwin) take it with a grain of salt.

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josephus
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 6:14 pm 
 

Muhammadabbadabba wrote:
Could somebody please discuss Anarchism and actually explain what it is...as layman as possible?
No state (government) control. People govern themselves without politicians, and police themselves without police. That's about as layman/simple as it gets.
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Noobbot
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 9:08 pm 
 

The concept of anarchy is simple: it is, in its basic form, a philosophy concerning the dissolution of government. Other things are tacked on - individualist/liberal/capitalist, collectivist/communist/syndicalist, primitivist, or anything in between. But anarchy itself is only the belief that humans can operate in society without the oppressive hand of government. Thus, Josephus is correct.

No, Andar, it is not inopposition to all hierarchies - not all of them can practically be eliminated. You cannot remove parents, business executives (at least not without reverting to primitivism), or priests (at least as long as dumbasses remain religious). You can remove the state, the aristocracy, and others from dominating over everyone else, sure, but not all heirarchies are evil. Besides, a collectivist society would be innately coercive, because otherwise not everyone would share equally without exploiting that fact. Collectivism really cannot work with humans without government, or everyone would necessarily have to be like ants or bees or otherwise automatons.

If it's not apparent, I, myself, am an anarchist. As for now, I have to dull my edge a bit, for unless people are at least somewhat coaxed into libertarianism, government will reappear the Friday of the week that we overthrow it. That would do absolutely no one any good, because it would result in a lot of death and destruction, but with no real progress.

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Andar
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2008 4:31 am 
 

Anarcho capitalism is not anarchism, sorry.

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Mors_Gloria
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2008 10:08 am 
 

Andar wrote:
Stirner for a dose of hyper individualism (not my cup of tea, they're basically free marketers)


And that's where I'm going to disagree. Stirner was not a free marketer. Stirner does not respect property. Let me give you a quote:

Max Stirner, Der Einzige und sein Eigentum, page 248 wrote:
I do not step shyly back from your property, but look upon it always as my property, in which I respect nothing. Pray do the like with what you call my property!


He does not oppose property though. He also writes:

Max Stirner, Der Einzige und sein Eigentum, page 248 wrote:
What I have in my power, that is my own. So long as I assert myself as holder, I am the proprietor of the thing


Ultimately, Stirner can be seen as a supporter of Social Darwinism in the property issue.

Noobbot, your words resemble the words of a Libertarian. And yes, anarchists oppose all hierarchies. I'd say that being against hierarchies is one of the most fundamental parts of anarchism.

As for me, I am closer to extreme individualism and individualist anarchism. I find myself closer to the beliefs of Stirner and Nietzsche (for me "Metaxiosis" as proposed by Nietzsche is an anarchist concept) than to collectivist ones.

EDIT: Edited for fixing quoting error.
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Last edited by Mors_Gloria on Mon Mar 31, 2008 3:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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DBettino
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2008 1:44 pm 
 

Most anarchists seem to contradict themselves by supporting political rights while decrying the evils of statehood. This has never made sense to me. Of course, it's probably also true that most anarchists don't know the first thing about anarchism, and just see it as another far-leftist movement.

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Andar
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2008 3:12 pm 
 

DBettino wrote:
Most anarchists seem to contradict themselves by supporting political rights while decrying the evils of statehood. This has never made sense to me. Of course, it's probably also true that most anarchists don't know the first thing about anarchism, and just see it as another far-leftist movement.


Because there's this thing called pragmatism and living in the real world. Political rights are needed now because we would be living under an even harder heel. Can't base your life around theory entirely.

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Mors_Gloria
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2008 4:02 pm 
 

DBettino wrote:
Most anarchists seem to contradict themselves by supporting political rights while decrying the evils of statehood. This has never made sense to me. Of course, it's probably also true that most anarchists don't know the first thing about anarchism, and just see it as another far-leftist movement.


Political rights simply are not going to exist in a world organized according to the ideology of anarchism. Cause such thing like politics or political parties are not going to exist. Cause no one will be able to impose his opinion upon another person.

However, as Andar said if we didn't support political rights and freedom of speech and expression at this given time things would be a lot harsher. You cannot go from despotism to anarchism. It simply is not possible. You can go to anarchism only through immediate democracy (not this shitty form of representative "democracy" that exists now).
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Noobbot
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2008 5:53 pm 
 

Andar wrote:
Anarcho capitalism is not anarchism, sorry.


I'm more of an individualist than anything, but you're telling me that individualism is not anarchy? What, pray tell, is it then? I suppose anarchy does not even theoretically exist then.

Are corporations really [domineering] hierarchies though? In a sense they are, but only if one is within said corporations. But in anarchy, they cannot be coercive through either themselves or the state (as they are now). I would like to embrace primitivism, but I realize that, eventually, society would be reestablished along with government, undoing all "progress". People say that dealing with corporations would be necessary under individualism, but that's not true; one could easily live as a secluded hermit if one wished.

Mors_Gloria wrote:
DBettino wrote:
Most anarchists seem to contradict themselves by supporting political rights while decrying the evils of statehood. This has never made sense to me. Of course, it's probably also true that most anarchists don't know the first thing about anarchism, and just see it as another far-leftist movement.


Political rights simply are not going to exist in a world organized according to the ideology of anarchism. Cause such thing like politics or political parties are not going to exist. Cause no one will be able to impose his opinion upon another person.

However, as Andar said if we didn't support political rights and freedom of speech and expression at this given time things would be a lot harsher. You cannot go from despotism to anarchism. It simply is not possible. You can go to anarchism only through immediate democracy (not this shitty form of representative "democracy" that exists now).


Indeed, I don't see how involvement in the state (as to eventually destabalize it) is in the slightest hypocritical.

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Mors_Gloria
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2008 6:00 pm 
 

Noobbot wrote:

I'm more of an individualist than anything, but you're telling me that individualism is not anarchy? What, pray tell, is it then? I suppose anarchy does not even theoretically exist then.


What????? o_O Capitalism is the major tool of the state to repress the individual. Please, do not stain the name of individualism by associating with the fucking capitalist killers.

Noobbot wrote:
Are corporations really [domineering] hierarchies though?



Yes, they are.
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Andar
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2008 6:06 pm 
 

Noobbot wrote:
Andar wrote:
Anarcho capitalism is not anarchism, sorry.


I'm more of an individualist than anything, but you're telling me that individualism is not anarchy? What, pray tell, is it then? I suppose anarchy does not even theoretically exist then.

Are corporations really [domineering] hierarchies though? In a sense they are, but only if one is within said corporations. But in anarchy, they cannot be coercive through either themselves or the state (as they are now). I would like to embrace primitivism, but I realize that, eventually, society would be reestablished along with government, undoing all "progress". People say that dealing with corporations would be necessary under individualism, but that's not true; one could easily live as a secluded hermit if one wished.

Mors_Gloria wrote:
DBettino wrote:
Most anarchists seem to contradict themselves by supporting political rights while decrying the evils of statehood. This has never made sense to me. Of course, it's probably also true that most anarchists don't know the first thing about anarchism, and just see it as another far-leftist movement.


Political rights simply are not going to exist in a world organized according to the ideology of anarchism. Cause such thing like politics or political parties are not going to exist. Cause no one will be able to impose his opinion upon another person.

However, as Andar said if we didn't support political rights and freedom of speech and expression at this given time things would be a lot harsher. You cannot go from despotism to anarchism. It simply is not possible. You can go to anarchism only through immediate democracy (not this shitty form of representative "democracy" that exists now).


Indeed, I don't see how involvement in the state (as to eventually destabalize it) is in the slightest hypocritical.


One can embrace anti-capitalist anarchism without being a primitivist. Hell look at what happened in Argentina. Country went bankrupt overnight because of an uncontrolled free market that forced working class people out of jobs. What did they do afterwards? They came together in a collective and autonomous fashion working and producing goods and services in an egalitarian fashion.

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cinedracusio
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 2:18 am 
 

Andar wrote:
Noobbot wrote:
Andar wrote:
Anarcho capitalism is not anarchism, sorry.


I'm more of an individualist than anything, but you're telling me that individualism is not anarchy? What, pray tell, is it then? I suppose anarchy does not even theoretically exist then.

Are corporations really [domineering] hierarchies though? In a sense they are, but only if one is within said corporations. But in anarchy, they cannot be coercive through either themselves or the state (as they are now). I would like to embrace primitivism, but I realize that, eventually, society would be reestablished along with government, undoing all "progress". People say that dealing with corporations would be necessary under individualism, but that's not true; one could easily live as a secluded hermit if one wished.

Mors_Gloria wrote:
DBettino wrote:
Most anarchists seem to contradict themselves by supporting political rights while decrying the evils of statehood. This has never made sense to me. Of course, it's probably also true that most anarchists don't know the first thing about anarchism, and just see it as another far-leftist movement.


Political rights simply are not going to exist in a world organized according to the ideology of anarchism. Cause such thing like politics or political parties are not going to exist. Cause no one will be able to impose his opinion upon another person.

However, as Andar said if we didn't support political rights and freedom of speech and expression at this given time things would be a lot harsher. You cannot go from despotism to anarchism. It simply is not possible. You can go to anarchism only through immediate democracy (not this shitty form of representative "democracy" that exists now).


Indeed, I don't see how involvement in the state (as to eventually destabalize it) is in the slightest hypocritical.


One can embrace anti-capitalist anarchism without being a primitivist. Hell look at what happened in Argentina. Country went bankrupt overnight because of an uncontrolled free market that forced working class people out of jobs. What did they do afterwards? They came together in a collective and autonomous fashion working and producing goods and services in an egalitarian fashion.

Yes, this is a damn manky issue. One can read Ulrich Beck's book, What Is Globalization? and see that despite the economic growth of the states, the only getting richer are the trans-national enterprise bosses :uh oh: while common people become even more impoverished and the number of job places is reduced. Very difficult issue, in my opinion.
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Mors_Gloria
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 3:31 am 
 

cinedracusio wrote:
Yes, this is a damn manky issue. One can read Ulrich Beck's book, What Is Globalization? and see that despite the economic growth of the states, the only getting richer are the trans-national enterprise bosses :uh oh: while common people become even more impoverished and the number of job places is reduced. Very difficult issue, in my opinion.


Cause the essence of Capitalism and Globalization. "The rich richer and the poor poorer"
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ReigningChaos
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 3:43 pm 
 

Capitalism and anarchy are absolutely compatible. The state has been destroying free markets, either through benevolent (but misguided) attempts to redistribute the wealth, or through aiding the already powerful and helping them gain power and wealth at the expense of the poor and the weak. In a stateless society, the market couldn't be anything but free. Whether that results in a cold dystopia is entirely up to the people who possess the means to produce goods. Frankly, without the government's guns backing up the working class, I don't ever see it becoming a powerful enough force to establish any system other than capitalism. The only way that will happen is if the proletariat as a whole were to unite and remain cohesive. History has proven such an event to be unlikely.
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Andar
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 4:33 pm 
 

But anarchism means free of all hierarchical systems. And capitalism is a hierarchical system. It subjects people under the rule of a dominating merchant class.

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Noobbot
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 4:37 pm 
 

ReigningChaos wrote:
Capitalism and anarchy are absolutely compatible. The state has been destroying free markets, either through benevolent (but misguided) attempts to redistribute the wealth, or through aiding the already powerful and helping them gain power and wealth at the expense of the poor and the weak. In a stateless society, the market couldn't be anything but free. Whether that results in a cold dystopia is entirely up to the people who possess the means to produce goods. Frankly, without the government's guns backing up the working class, I don't ever see it becoming a powerful enough force to establish any system other than capitalism. The only way that will happen is if the proletariat as a whole were to unite and remain cohesive. History has proven such an event to be unlikely.


Exactly. People speak of universal monopolies, shortages, and complete polarization of the socio-economic classes, but that's actually much truer under any kind of collectivism than a free market. In fact, collectivism/communism represents the epitome of all of those: the state (in the event of statist collectivism which is the only realistic means outside of a micro society) runs a total monopoly on all industry, the average citizen has no real incentive for production or innovation (which is a common and, while somewhat fallacious claim, holds truth nonetheless), and everyone outside of government is the proletariat and those who are in the apex of the pyramid are the bourgeoisie (to borrow Marx's own terms). Statist capitalism is anything but free (or capitalistic), for there are so many instances of government causing market monopolies (as opposed to preventing it) that I couldn't list them if I wanted to.

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Andar
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 4:39 pm 
 

I'm arguing against state capitalism as well, dude. Its not A or B.

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greysnow
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 4:53 pm 
 

Even in a stateless society the concept of power wouldn't go away. Power, if I may define it as "the means to secure one's interests against the interests of others", will be a necessary thing to have for the individual (or collective) under anarchical circumstances; you'll have to defend what's yours or you're fucked; there'll be no large, powerful organization (a court system with adjoined police force) to help you. So people will carry weapons. And use them. And guns are - power.

I would go farther: there is power inherent in human society, even without weapons. Some people have more charisma than others; self-assured individuals tend to dominate doubting, less self-assured ones; and of course there's the bodily harm someone bigger or meaner than you can threaten you with. And charisma and fists are - power.

Now, anarchism must of course contain contractual freedom, or it isn't freedom at all. Now suppose we have a richer person and a poorer person. (If we think up a mechanism to prevent having richer and poorer persons, it'll have to use some sort of power to enforce that decree, and then it's not anarchism.) Further suppose the poorer person is employed by the richer person to do a job for them. The poorer person invests his labor, neglecting to tend his own fields or what have you. At the end of the day, the richer person decides not to pay him as much as he promised and says "take it or leave it". He uses his economic leverage. And economic leverage is - power.
(This might of course result in a pitched battle between supporters of the laborer and henchmen of the employer. Back to point 1 - guns.)

Power isn't going to go anywhere. And it is naive to think that it will not be exercised. So we have to have some way to channel and control it. That way can only be provided by - guess what - power. The power of law, of the courts, of the press. And what do we need to set up and maintain a control system like that? We need a framework. In other words, a state. An instrument to control excessive power and, ideally, to share it as widely as possible.

Even a small rural collective that lives by self-established rules will have to enforce those rules if they're broken, or it's not going to be a collective for long. People are not good, or more precisely, not all people are good; what to do with the murderer, the rapist, the thief?

And a note on anarchy and free markets - you can certainly have free markets and anarchy, in the populist, negative meaning of that term, i.e. as a synonym for "chaos". (I see it in the German state of Lower Saxony where the used paper disposal has been deregularized, and where several waste disposal and recycling companies now compete by spamming houseowners with unwanted paper collection bins and spiriting away those of the competition.) But you can't have free markets and anarchism. In a totally free market where the behavior of the economic subject is not monitored at some level or checked at some point, centers of power will build immediately, with the more successful individual or corporation who can pay for security guards to protect the assets, for thugs to control the resources and for goons to intimidate the workforce.

Power exists whenever people form any sort of group. It's always been here and always will. That's why we need a way of dealing with it. Flowery dreams of anarchism and happy-ever-after will not make it go away.
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Mors_Gloria
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:03 pm 
 

ReigningChaos wrote:
Capitalism and anarchy are absolutely compatible. The state has been destroying free markets, either through benevolent (but misguided) attempts to redistribute the wealth, or through aiding the already powerful and helping them gain power and wealth at the expense of the poor and the weak. In a stateless society, the market couldn't be anything but free. Whether that results in a cold dystopia is entirely up to the people who possess the means to produce goods. Frankly, without the government's guns backing up the working class, I don't ever see it becoming a powerful enough force to establish any system other than capitalism. The only way that will happen is if the proletariat as a whole were to unite and remain cohesive. History has proven such an event to be unlikely.


First, you confuse anarchism with anarchy. Anarchy is a situation. Whereas anarchism is a political ideology. Don't confuse the two. In a stateless society what remains is not anarchy. But freedom. Ultimate freedom.

Second, about capitalism. Capitalism is a hierarchical and oppressive tool of the world goverment and of globalization. As it is now it is the exact opposite of anarchism. Free market can exist in anarchism only in the form of mutualism or voluntaryism (two economical systems I'm quite interested in). But even these two free market economical systems are anti-capitalist. Cause capitalism propagates monopolies and oppression towards the poor.

@Noobot, collectivism is as oppressive as capitalism. They both oppose the absolute freedom that anarchism should aim for. That can be achieved only via voluntaryism or mutualism.

EDIT: Edited to respond to Noobot.
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Last edited by Mors_Gloria on Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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ReigningChaos
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:05 pm 
 

Anarchism's best chance is for people to see that their self interest is tied with the self interest of those around them. One doesn't have to endorse collectivist ideology to see that. If your archetypal dishonest rich person cheats a poorer one, the poor person has a number of option. He can take the little money he is given. He can take the money and find a new employer (which is the beauty of a free market: a business that cheats its employees won't be in business for long). He can assert his own will on the employer, through the use of weapons such as guns, or by rallying his fellow workers who also have a stake in the outcome of the situation (if they allow one worker to be cheated, they may soon find themselves in similar predicaments). To say that anarchism is the total absence of power (or hierarchy) is inaccurate. It is a distortion of its meaning, and it takes the logic that it applies to the nature of the state to an extreme it was never meant to reach. There is a very good chance that there is a line that must be drawn somewhere; a "minimum" state that ensures each person's rights are protected and that contracts are honored. I don't know where to draw the line yet, so I'll shoot for the stars and hope to hit the moon (to borrow another poster's analogy). The trouble with government isn't merely that they have power, but that our society sees their claim to power as righteous, when in reality it really is just a matter of having the most money and or guns.
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ReigningChaos
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:07 pm 
 

Mors_Gloria wrote:
Cause capitalism propagates monopolies and oppression towards the poor.


Every proponent of a free market I've read has advocated the danger of monopolies, because they undermine the concept of voluntary exchange, the backbone of capitalism.
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Mors_Gloria
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:09 pm 
 

ReigningChaos wrote:
Mors_Gloria wrote:
Cause capitalism propagates monopolies and oppression towards the poor.


Every proponent of a free market I've read has advocated the danger of monopolies, because they undermine the concept of voluntary exchange, the backbone of capitalism.


Voluntary exchange?? Under a capitalist system? :lol:

Thank you for making me laugh.

ReigningChaos wrote:
Anarchism's best chance is for people to see that their self interest is tied with the self interest of those around them. One doesn't have to endorse collectivist ideology to see that. If your archetypal dishonest rich person cheats a poorer one, the poor person has a number of option. He can take the little money he is given. He can take the money and find a new employer (which is the beauty of a free market: a business that cheats its employees won't be in business for long). He can assert his own will on the employer, through the use of weapons such as guns, or by rallying his fellow workers who also have a stake in the outcome of the situation (if they allow one worker to be cheated, they may soon find themselves in similar predicaments). To say that anarchism is the total absence of power (or hierarchy) is inaccurate. It is a distortion of its meaning, and it takes the logic that it applies to the nature of the state to an extreme it was never meant to reach. There is a very good chance that there is a line that must be drawn somewhere; a "minimum" state that ensures each person's rights are protected and that contracts are honored. I don't know where to draw the line yet, so I'll shoot for the stars and hope to hit the moon (to borrow another poster's analogy). The trouble with government isn't merely that they have power, but that our society sees their claim to power as righteous, when in reality it really is just a matter of having the most money and or guns.


The problem with goverment is that they have the power to exploit others. And that's due to the money they posses. To quote Proudhon: Freedom cannot exist without equality.
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Mors_Gloria
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:26 pm 
 

greysnow wrote:
Even in a stateless society the concept of power wouldn't go away. Power, if I may define it as "the means to secure one's interests against the interests of others", will be a necessary thing to have for the individual (or collective) under anarchical circumstances; you'll have to defend what's yours or you're fucked; there'll be no large, powerful organization (a court system with adjoined police force) to help you. So people will carry weapons. And use them. And guns are - power.


1) You seem to confuse power with might. Might is something that is revolved around your ego and stops there (at your ego). Power may affect others two. Power is something that is not compatible to anarchism as it can lead to exploitation. Might, on the other hand, is compatible.

2) On property issues you can always act with might in order to defend your ego. However, as Stirner said things belong to you only for the time you hold them. To quote him:

Max Stirner wrote:
What I have in my power, that is my own. So long as I assert myself as holder, I am the proprietor of the thing.


greysnow wrote:
I would go farther: there is power inherent in human society, even without weapons. Some people have more charisma than others; self-assured individuals tend to dominate doubting, less self-assured ones; and of course there's the bodily harm someone bigger or meaner than you can threaten you with. And charisma and fists are - power.


In an anarchistic society no one would impose himself upon others. Everyone will rule himself / herself. Trying to harm another person is oppressive and thus have no place in such a society.

greysnow wrote:
Now, anarchism must of course contain contractual freedom, or it isn't freedom at all. Now suppose we have a richer person and a poorer person. (If we think up a mechanism to prevent having richer and poorer persons, it'll have to use some sort of power to enforce that decree, and then it's not anarchism.) Further suppose the poorer person is employed by the richer person to do a job for them. The poorer person invests his labor, neglecting to tend his own fields or what have you. At the end of the day, the richer person decides not to pay him as much as he promised and says "take it or leave it". He uses his economic leverage. And economic leverage is - power.
(This might of course result in a pitched battle between supporters of the laborer and henchmen of the employer. Back to point 1 - guns.)


Economic leverage is a form of exploitation so it's not compatible with anarchism either.

greysnow wrote:
Power isn't going to go anywhere. And it is naive to think that it will not be exercised. So we have to have some way to channel and control it. That way can only be provided by - guess what - power. The power of law, of the courts, of the press. And what do we need to set up and maintain a control system like that? We need a framework. In other words, a state. An instrument to control excessive power and, ideally, to share it as widely as possible.


I disagree. Humans are not born greedy. Personally, I believe that humans are born "tabula rasa" as Locke said.

greysnow wrote:
Even a small rural collective that lives by self-established rules will have to enforce those rules if they're broken, or it's not going to be a collective for long. People are not good, or more precisely, not all people are good; what to do with the murderer, the rapist, the thief?


As done in Christiania rapists, murderers and thieves are going to be driven away of the community. And that's why I disagree with collectivism.

greysnow wrote:
And a note on anarchy and free markets - you can certainly have free markets and anarchy, in the populist, negative meaning of that term, i.e. as a synonym for "chaos". (I see it in the German state of Lower Saxony where the used paper disposal has been deregularized, and where several waste disposal and recycling companies now compete by spamming houseowners with unwanted paper collection bins and spiriting away those of the competition.) But you can't have free markets and anarchism. In a totally free market where the behavior of the economic subject is not monitored at some level or checked at some point, centers of power will build immediately, with the more successful individual or corporation who can pay for security guards to protect the assets, for thugs to control the resources and for goons to intimidate the workforce.


Don't confuse Free Market with Capitalism my friend. Mutualism and Voluntaryism are free market economical theories and the example you brought (which is a great example on how to debunk "anarcho"-capitalism) cannot be verified. Cause simply it won't have the form of today's free market but the form of a renewed free market based on freedom and not oppression as it is with Capitalism.
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greysnow
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Feb 17, 2008 10:01 am
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:30 pm 
 

ReigningChaos wrote:
Anarchism's best chance is for people to see that their self interest is tied with the self interest of those around them. One doesn't have to endorse collectivist ideology to see that. If your archetypal dishonest rich person cheats a poorer one, the poor person has a number of option. He can take the little money he is given. He can take the money and find a new employer (which is the beauty of a free market: a business that cheats its employees won't be in business for long). He can assert his own will on the employer, through the use of weapons such as guns, or by rallying his fellow workers who also have a stake in the outcome of the situation (if they allow one worker to be cheated, they may soon find themselves in similar predicaments).

The totally free market is a theoretical construct that is never found in reality. A worker cannot easily find a new employer if

- no new employer wants him (as in an economic crisis)
- he doesn't have the capabilities that a new employer wants, and cannot acquire them
- he doesn't know about a prospective new employer because he doesn't have access to all available information, such access being prevented by lack of funds to obtain them, or by lack of a system of information dispersal.

Asserting his own will on the employer by force is a) dangerous - you can be picked off before you had a chance of forming a rally or a union; b) leads to deplorable violence.

I don't see many points in favor of your type of anarchism.

ReigningChaos wrote:
To say that anarchism is the total absence of power (or hierarchy) is inaccurate. It is a distortion of its meaning, and it takes the logic that it applies to the nature of the state to an extreme it was never meant to reach.

Good that we cleared that up. In my defense I have to say that some anarchists actually believe that nonsense, and so I thought I'd introduce a kind of reality check first before the discussion goes further.

ReigningChaos wrote:
There is a very good chance that there is a line that must be drawn somewhere; a "minimum" state that ensures each person's rights are protected and that contracts are honored.

A-ha! No talk of anarchism now.

ReigningChaos wrote:
The trouble with government isn't merely that they have power, but that our society sees their claim to power as righteous, when in reality it really is just a matter of having the most money and or guns.

Maybe society sees their claim to power as righteous because society actually profits from the government? As in providing education and help in need, and as in ensuring that its rights are protected and its contracts are honored?
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Mors_Gloria
See? Marge was right!! ^

Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:07 am
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:40 pm 
 

greysnow wrote:
ReigningChaos wrote:
To say that anarchism is the total absence of power (or hierarchy) is inaccurate. It is a distortion of its meaning, and it takes the logic that it applies to the nature of the state to an extreme it was never meant to reach.

Good that we cleared that up. In my defense I have to say that some anarchists actually believe that nonsense, and so I thought I'd introduce a kind of reality check first before the discussion goes further.


Personally, I believe this "nonsense" as you say, my friend. Anarchism is against hierarchies. Cause hierarchies are oppressive and therefore they should be abolished. And that's why I find extreme individualism to be perfectly compatible with anarchism (and this conclusion has led me many times to call Nietzsche an anarchist).

greysnow wrote:
ReigningChaos wrote:
There is a very good chance that there is a line that must be drawn somewhere; a "minimum" state that ensures each person's rights are protected and that contracts are honored.

A-ha! No talk of anarchism now.


My friend, it's more than obvious from ReigningChaos's post that he is a minarchist and not an anarchist ;)

Anyway, I'm leaving now. Time to get back at Battle For Middle Earth II :D
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greysnow
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Feb 17, 2008 10:01 am
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 5:50 pm 
 

Mors_Gloria wrote:
1) You seem to confuse power with might. Might is something that is revolved around your ego and stops there (at your ego). Power may affect others two. Power is something that is not compatible to anarchism as it can lead to exploitation. Might, on the other hand, is compatible.

2) On property issues you can always act with might in order to defend your ego.[...]

What? The fists that I use to defend myself cannot be used to tyrannize others? Your distinction is completely arbitrary. Saying that "power is not compatible to anarchism" simply leads me to the conclusion that, since power will not disappear, anarchism won't materialize.

Mors_Gloria wrote:
In an anarchistic society no one would impose himself upon others. Everyone will rule himself / herself. Trying to harm another person is oppressive and thus have no place in such a society.

"It ain't so because it is not allowed to be so." Come on. "In an anarchistic society no one would impose himself upon others"? Because Mors_Gloria said so? How are you going to discourage him?

Mors_Gloria wrote:
Economic leverage is a form of exploitation so it's not compatible with anarchism either.

Yeah. And because it's not compatible it will vanish.
Mors, you do nothing but state unsubstantiated articles of faith every time you get on about this subject. Your notion of anarchism is religious - it's the notion of an earthly paradise where there are no wolves and sheep, everyone without exception is decent and cooperative all the time and we all, to quote William Gibson, "commune with what's left of bloody nature and live off nuts and berries for the rest of our lives".

Mors_Gloria wrote:
I disagree. Humans are not born greedy. Personally, I believe that humans are born "tabula rasa" as Locke said.

No. Humans want food, warmth, shelter from the day they are born. Depending on later experience in their lives, many develop a strong sense of the value of material security, a sense that makes them gather in time to save for the need, and the more gathered, the better - i.e. greed.

Mors_Gloria wrote:
[...]Cause simply it won't have the form of today's free market but the form of a renewed free market based on freedom and not oppression as it is with Capitalism.

"Simply it won't have the form". Again salvation by Mors_Gloria's decree.

Mors, don't get me wrong. I really like you, you know that, and I can't help but admire your unflinching idealism; but you're oh so terribly naive.
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Mors_Gloria
See? Marge was right!! ^

Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:07 am
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Location: Greece
PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 6:23 pm 
 

greysnow wrote:
What? The fists that I use to defend myself cannot be used to tyrannize others? Your distinction is completely arbitrary. Saying that "power is not compatible to anarchism" simply leads me to the conclusion that, since power will not disappear, anarchism won't materialize.


Yes, my friend you cannot use the fists that you defend yourself in order to tyrannize others. Cause that will simply lead to the other person to defend back. The law of action and reaction. That's how nature works. So, if you don't want to get harmed do not harm others. As simply no one will be there for you to protect you.

greysnow wrote:
"It ain't so because it is not allowed to be so." Come on. "In an anarchistic society no one would impose himself upon others"? Because Mors_Gloria said so? How are you going to discourage him?


Same as above my friend. If someone tries to impose himself upon anyone else the law won't exist in order to protect the exploitator. So, he who exploits is going to be punished from the crowd. As I said before. Action-reaction.

greysnow wrote:
Yeah. And because it's not compatible it will vanish.
Mors, you do nothing but state unsubstantiated articles of faith every time you get on about this subject. Your notion of anarchism is religious - it's the notion of an earthly paradise where there are no wolves and sheep, everyone without exception is decent and cooperative all the time and we all, to quote William Gibson, "commune with what's left of bloody nature and live off nuts and berries for the rest of our lives".


Actually, my notion of anarchism is a world that everyone rules himself freely. That's the ultimate goal. I'm sure though that several stages will be needed in order to reach the goal.

greysnow wrote:
No. Humans want food, warmth, shelter from the day they are born. Depending on later experience in their lives, many develop a strong sense of the value of material security, a sense that makes them gather in time to save for the need, and the more gathered, the better - i.e. greed.


Wanting food, warmth and shelter is not greedy. It's natural. When you're brought in a society that property will be temporary (as long as you keep it in your possession) you're not going to become greedy either.

greysnow wrote:
"Simply it won't have the form". Again salvation by Mors_Gloria's decree.

Mors, don't get me wrong. I really like you, you know that, and I can't help but admire your unflinching idealism; but you're oh so terribly naive.


Yeah man, don't worry. We're only discussing here :)
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lostwolf
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 6:33 pm 
 

People also protect one another. There can be "laws" within an anarchist society, as long as they're made and agreed to by everyone in a community, for the sake of protecting one another.

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Andar
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 7:01 pm 
 

First off lets clarify some things. In the super hypothetical realm of a post-capitalist society/civilization I'd be perfectly willing to accept the notion that there are individualist anarchists, I just wouldn't want them to be a part of the collective that I would be a part of (note how I did not refer to myself as an anarchist in my initial post).

Deep community trust could be established on the one exemption to free will and that is that every month a pair of randomly decided persons must undergo a test. It never repeats and it's never the same two people. The task could be simple. Person A has a choice to load a rifle with blanks or with live rounds. They do not know who Person B is so they cannot decide based on a grudge, personal vendetta, etc etc. Person B must be fired upon by an independent arbiter. It is decided immediately and must be enacted on immediately. No prior knowledge is capable and all members of the collective are in the pool equally. If Person A were to load live rounds, well then we'd all know what kind of person they are.

I'm still very out to lunch on this notion of control because a part of it goes against my very fiber of being but at the same time I can understand its efficacy.

Lostwolf is pretty much spot on though. Societal laws on a small scale make sense. Sure its not "anarchy" in the hyper theoretical sense but I think only Mors was defending the theoretical stuff in pure form.

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Noobbot
Mors_Gloria + Thesaurus

Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2008 4:48 pm
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 9:08 pm 
 

Mors_Gloria wrote:
ReigningChaos wrote:
Capitalism and anarchy are absolutely compatible. The state has been destroying free markets, either through benevolent (but misguided) attempts to redistribute the wealth, or through aiding the already powerful and helping them gain power and wealth at the expense of the poor and the weak. In a stateless society, the market couldn't be anything but free. Whether that results in a cold dystopia is entirely up to the people who possess the means to produce goods. Frankly, without the government's guns backing up the working class, I don't ever see it becoming a powerful enough force to establish any system other than capitalism. The only way that will happen is if the proletariat as a whole were to unite and remain cohesive. History has proven such an event to be unlikely.


First, you confuse anarchism with anarchy. Anarchy is a situation. Whereas anarchism is a political ideology. Don't confuse the two. In a stateless society what remains is not anarchy. But freedom. Ultimate freedom.

Second, about capitalism. Capitalism is a hierarchical and oppressive tool of the world goverment and of globalization. As it is now it is the exact opposite of anarchism. Free market can exist in anarchism only in the form of mutualism or voluntaryism (two economical systems I'm quite interested in). But even these two free market economical systems are anti-capitalist. Cause capitalism propagates monopolies and oppression towards the poor.


Any big government has no plan in using capitalism. Capitalism means reduced governmental control over corporations/businesses, which means less tax money, which means smaller government, which means less power. That's why any statist capitalist systems always gravitate toward socialism as they "progress."

Mors_Gloria wrote:
@Noobot, collectivism is as oppressive as capitalism. They both oppose the absolute freedom that anarchism should aim for. That can be achieved only via voluntaryism or mutualism.

EDIT: Edited to respond to Noobot.


Mutualism is something I could go for, but I still much prefer individualism. I'm not fully schooled in the ways of mutualism, but something between collectivism and individualism is up for compromise.

Mors_Gloria wrote:
greysnow wrote:
ReigningChaos wrote:
To say that anarchism is the total absence of power (or hierarchy) is inaccurate. It is a distortion of its meaning, and it takes the logic that it applies to the nature of the state to an extreme it was never meant to reach.

Good that we cleared that up. In my defense I have to say that some anarchists actually believe that nonsense, and so I thought I'd introduce a kind of reality check first before the discussion goes further.


Personally, I believe this "nonsense" as you say, my friend. Anarchism is against hierarchies. Cause hierarchies are oppressive and therefore they should be abolished. And that's why I find extreme individualism to be perfectly compatible with anarchism (and this conclusion has led me many times to call Nietzsche an anarchist).


You cannot abolish all hierarchies, my friend. In primativism, there are hierarchies. You can eliminate the scale, so that hierarchies only exist on a micro level, as opposed to macro, but they can't be entirely done away with.

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lostwolf
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2007 8:24 pm
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 9:53 pm 
 

Maybe not, but thats no reason not to continue to fight for it. To continualy strive for the most free society possible.

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EOS
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2006 7:25 pm
Posts: 56
PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 10:20 pm 
 

The way I see it, anarchism would be great if people were the same (or at least extremely similar) and never had the propensity to use force over other people. In other words, people would have to be non-human.

As for capitalism, can someone point to a better economic system? Everytime I look through history, it's always capitalism, or the free market, that makes a country and all of its citizens much richer. Under a capitalist country, there is always a strong middle class (that is, until the State does away with them via inflation or other redistribution of wealth schemes). Perhaps I'm very naive, but I don't understand the aversion toward capitalism.

Edit: My question was mostly toward Mors_Gloria but I merely skimmed the thread before posting.


Mors_Gloria wrote:
Second, about capitalism. Capitalism is a hierarchical and oppressive tool of the world goverment and of globalization. As it is now it is the exact opposite of anarchism. Free market can exist in anarchism only in the form of mutualism or voluntaryism (two economical systems I'm quite interested in). But even these two free market economical systems are anti-capitalist. Cause capitalism propagates monopolies and oppression towards the poor.

I agree with you that I would favor a totally free market of mutualism and/or voluntaryism. I don't think it's ever going to happen, however. If you're an absolutist, I could see why you wouldn't like capitalism, but don't you agree it's the only system that comes closest, especially laissez-faire capitalism? We have never seen laissez-faire capitalism; some people would say laissez-faire capitalism is utopian, and I would agree with them in the sense that politicians will never manage to let their "hands off" the ecomony.

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Osmium
The Hateful Raven

Joined: Sat Nov 22, 2003 2:18 am
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 10:39 pm 
 

Mors_Gloria wrote:
Yes, my friend you cannot use the fists that you defend yourself in order to tyrannize others. Cause that will simply lead to the other person to defend back. The law of action and reaction. That's how nature works. So, if you don't want to get harmed do not harm others. As simply no one will be there for you to protect you.

Same as above my friend. If someone tries to impose himself upon anyone else the law won't exist in order to protect the exploitator. So, he who exploits is going to be punished from the crowd. As I said before. Action-reaction.


What if I am friends with people who have weapons? What if we decide to get together as a group and bully all those who are weaker than us into submission? Let's say that we ally with the next-strongest few groups and each take a territory of people to terrorize with our superior armaments. We are not afraid of them fighting back because we are militarily superior, and no greater force exists to dissuade us from our morally unpleasant, yet highly rational, expansion. Not all people will have the connections necessary to defend themselves: some will be old and frail, or economically incapable of paying for a defense group. This situation will naturally occur because people are not born equal: some live under favorable conditions, others do not. Natural selection is favorable toward those individuals and groups which are capable of out-performing other members of their species. If individuals compete, those who are more aggressive and driven are more likely to succeed; likewise with groups. If a group is capable of dominating other groups, through the use of high-grade military weapons and terror tactics, for example, and there is no authority capable of enforcing its laws on the group's actions, it will conquer others.

Unless you can do away with the human desire to compete, your society will never exist. It might be an ideal, but one that is considerably outside the scope of realistic approach.

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EOS
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2006 7:25 pm
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 11:08 pm 
 

Andar wrote:
One can embrace anti-capitalist anarchism without being a primitivist. Hell look at what happened in Argentina. Country went bankrupt overnight because of an uncontrolled free market that forced working class people out of jobs.

There was no "uncontrolled free market" in Argentina. Many of Argentina's economic problems were caused by terrible monetary policy.

Quote:
What did they do afterwards? They came together in a collective and autonomous fashion working and producing goods and services in an egalitarian fashion.

Sounds like a free market if you aske me.

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Andar
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 02, 2008 2:51 am 
 

Ah but it was not a capitalistic one.

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Bezerko
Vladimir Poopin

Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 2:50 am
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Location: Venestraya
PostPosted: Wed Apr 02, 2008 3:24 am 
 

Mors_Gloria wrote:
greysnow wrote:
What? The fists that I use to defend myself cannot be used to tyrannize others? Your distinction is completely arbitrary. Saying that "power is not compatible to anarchism" simply leads me to the conclusion that, since power will not disappear, anarchism won't materialize.


Yes, my friend you cannot use the fists that you defend yourself in order to tyrannize others. Cause that will simply lead to the other person to defend back. The law of action and reaction. That's how nature works. So, if you don't want to get harmed do not harm others. As simply no one will be there for you to protect you.[/.quote]

Have you considered that a person might be more powerful than another individual? OH NOES!

Mors_Gloria wrote:
greysnow wrote:
"It ain't so because it is not allowed to be so." Come on. "In an anarchistic society no one would impose himself upon others"? Because Mors_Gloria said so? How are you going to discourage him?


Same as above my friend. If someone tries to impose himself upon anyone else the law won't exist in order to protect the exploitator. So, he who exploits is going to be punished from the crowd. As I said before. Action-reaction.


"The crowd". Isn't this against your notion of individualist anarchy? Certainly, a crowd forms and you have a somewhat primitive society. But again, you say there is no law to enforce, so what the fuck is this group enforcing? The notion of punishment implies retribution for a wrong doing, so isn't this a form of law? A "rule" or "law" doesn't have to be written down in large books to be enforced. Again, you manage to contradict yourself.

:durr:

EDIT: Fixed the quote so it displays properly. I hate trying to organise those things.


Last edited by Bezerko on Wed Apr 02, 2008 3:58 am, edited 2 times in total.
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greysnow
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Feb 17, 2008 10:01 am
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 02, 2008 3:28 am 
 

Mors_Gloria wrote:
Yes, my friend you cannot use the fists that you defend yourself in order to tyrannize others. Cause that will simply lead to the other person to defend back. The law of action and reaction. That's how nature works. So, if you don't want to get harmed do not harm others. As simply no one will be there for you to protect you.

See Osmium's post.

Mors_Gloria wrote:
Same as above my friend. If someone tries to impose himself upon anyone else the law won't exist in order to protect the exploitator. So, he who exploits is going to be punished from the crowd. As I said before. Action-reaction.

The law will not exist to protect the weak either. And don't assume that every baddie will be getting heat from a crowd. In fact, terror regimes often work successfully by divide et impera. Righteous crowds might not form because any prospective member is himself afraid of the tyrant's retribution, or of that of his friends.
EDIT: Also see Bezerko's post.

Mors_Gloria wrote:
Wanting food, warmth and shelter is not greedy. It's natural. When you're brought in a society that property will be temporary (as long as you keep it in your possession) you're not going to become greedy either.

Wrong again. If I can keep things that I need in my possession, without control nothing prevents me to gather more and more things into my possession, just to be on the safe side if there's a crisis. The desire for safety is the root of greed. If there's a drought, my anarchist ideals that all remaining resources should be shared out equally won't stop me from starving, so I'll suspend my ideals to feed myself at others' cost. As Brecht said: "Erst kommt das Fressen, dann kommt die Moral" or "first the feed, then morals."

Andar wrote:
*brrrrr*

I'm still very out to lunch on this notion of control because a part of it goes against my very fiber of being but at the same time I can understand its efficacy.

I bloody well hope the horrible scenario that you describe goes against your very fiber. It is also completely worthless as a test of anti-social propensity. People are usually anti-social on a much lower level: they cheat, they steal, they exploit. Any fool could see through your test, if it were instituted, and neverless carry on committing fraud or theft. And if nothing could be done about that, I already see the members of your ideal community hunger for the day when the fraudster is going to be Person B.
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Andar
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 02, 2008 3:38 am 
 

Yeah it's not my idea. And I don't agree with it. Ultimately I do believe in a level of pragmatism with my idealistic anarchism. Having some community scale laws just makes simple sense. As long as they're agreed upon directly in a communal fashion.

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greysnow
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 02, 2008 3:45 am 
 

lostwolf wrote:
People also protect one another. There can be "laws" within an anarchist society, as long as they're made and agreed to by everyone in a community, for the sake of protecting one another.

What if they are openly agreed to by everyone in the community but secretly not adhered to? The community would need means to enforce its laws. Ergo, you get a rough kind of power again.
This all isn't to say that a society consisting of self-governed communities without a central authority wouldn't work at all. After all, that's how humanity organized its first few hundred thousand years. But while this may be anarchism according to a definition that there be no central state, it isn't anarchism according to the individualist-anarchist definition (which is never going to work at all). And I doubt the benefits of only having a small-scale regional organization. You'll get arbitrary decisions of your tribal council or chief without possibility for appeal; endless petty tribal feuds; and increased obstacles for possible common wealth-increasing projects.
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