Anarchism
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07-09-2015, 08:39 AM
RE: Anarchism
The odd thing is that in the intro thread I invited him to make a new thread on anarchism so that we could dismantle it.

He made the thread and immediately got butthurt. Consider

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07-09-2015, 11:17 AM
RE: Anarchism
Well, since there are, so far, no actual posts about anarchism in this thread since the OP deleted his, and since I'm bored, I will post my thoughts about anarchism. And I give my word that I will not delete this post. If it gets deleted, it won't be by me.

Anarchism is, as I understand it, the political philosophy that society does not require a coercive government, as well as the political system that would arise from the implementation of that philosophy. Communism, as propounded by Marx and Engels, is a marriage of anarchism with utopian socialism. They believed that after an intermediate evolutionary period, the state (i.e. government) would "whither away," and cease to exist, and that every person would contribute what labor he or she was capable of, and consume what he or she needed. ("From each according to his ability and to each according to his need.") Anarchism itself says nothing about what economic system should be established, but is an integral part of Communism, which specifies both the absence of the state and an economic system where all labor and all goods are shared equally and voluntarily.

In my youth I was a communist, because I regarded the system propounded by Marx and Engels (not the system extant in the U.S.S.R.) to be the most fair, just, and desirable of social organizations.

As I aged, however, I became more cynical about human nature. In the absence of coercive government, some individuals will take more than their share and contribute less. (The tragedy of the commons.) Some individuals will use violence to extract what they want from others. Others will form vigilante committees to hunt down and punish the perpetrators, and the seeds of government will spontaneously re-emerge. There will be quarrels and rivalries between neighboring committees, and tribal wars will break out. The winners will incorporate the territories of the losers. Some will integrate while others will subjugate those they've conquered. Eventually we'll reach the state we have now, where nations are large enough to be self-sustaining, at least for a time.

I still like the idea of Communism: I.e., a world-wide commune of equal sharing without coercion by any state entity. All decisions made by consensus so that aggregate institutions could not be called "government" because their purpose is to solve problems and set mutually-agreeded-upon standards. I have a friend who is a capitalist anarchist: he wants individual wealth, rather than sharing of all goods and labor, but thinks that government is evil and that everything useful that government does could be done better by non-coercive neighborhood committees. And I have another friend who is a Christian anarchist. He thinks people are basically good (he does not subscribe to notions of original sin or the inherent sinfulness of people) and that given a chance, they could live in harmony without government. He's actually very close to Marx and Engels, but with god in the picture.

I just don't think that anarchism (or Communism) could work in a world populated by humans. We've evolved over millions of years to struggle for limited resources, and while cooperation within family or tribal groups is part of our genetic make-up because it has enabled groups to thrive, we still have a visceral reaction to oppose rival families or tribes. I just don't think the level of cooperation needed for anarchism to be successful is human nature.

I welcome your thoughts.

And here's a picture of a bear.

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07-09-2015, 11:30 AM
RE: Anarchism
(07-09-2015 11:17 AM)daniel1948 Wrote:  Well, since there are, so far, no actual posts about anarchism in this thread since the OP deleted his, and since I'm bored, I will post my thoughts about anarchism. And I give my word that I will not delete this post. If it gets deleted, it won't be by me.

Anarchism is, as I understand it, the political philosophy that society does not require a coercive government, as well as the political system that would arise from the implementation of that philosophy. Communism, as propounded by Marx and Engels, is a marriage of anarchism with utopian socialism. They believed that after an intermediate evolutionary period, the state (i.e. government) would "whither away," and cease to exist, and that every person would contribute what labor he or she was capable of, and consume what he or she needed. ("From each according to his ability and to each according to his need.") Anarchism itself says nothing about what economic system should be established, but is an integral part of Communism, which specifies both the absence of the state and an economic system where all labor and all goods are shared equally and voluntarily.

In my youth I was a communist, because I regarded the system propounded by Marx and Engels (not the system extant in the U.S.S.R.) to be the most fair, just, and desirable of social organizations.

As I aged, however, I became more cynical about human nature. In the absence of coercive government, some individuals will take more than their share and contribute less. (The tragedy of the commons.) Some individuals will use violence to extract what they want from others. Others will form vigilante committees to hunt down and punish the perpetrators, and the seeds of government will spontaneously re-emerge. There will be quarrels and rivalries between neighboring committees, and tribal wars will break out. The winners will incorporate the territories of the losers. Some will integrate while others will subjugate those they've conquered. Eventually we'll reach the state we have now, where nations are large enough to be self-sustaining, at least for a time.

I still like the idea of Communism: I.e., a world-wide commune of equal sharing without coercion by any state entity. All decisions made by consensus so that aggregate institutions could not be called "government" because their purpose is to solve problems and set mutually-agreeded-upon standards. I have a friend who is a capitalist anarchist: he wants individual wealth, rather than sharing of all goods and labor, but thinks that government is evil and that everything useful that government does could be done better by non-coercive neighborhood committees. And I have another friend who is a Christian anarchist. He thinks people are basically good (he does not subscribe to notions of original sin or the inherent sinfulness of people) and that given a chance, they could live in harmony without government. He's actually very close to Marx and Engels, but with god in the picture.

I just don't think that anarchism (or Communism) could work in a world populated by humans. We've evolved over millions of years to struggle for limited resources, and while cooperation within family or tribal groups is part of our genetic make-up because it has enabled groups to thrive, we still have a visceral reaction to oppose rival families or tribes. I just don't think the level of cooperation needed for anarchism to be successful is human nature.

I welcome your thoughts.

And here's a picture of a bear.

[Image: IMG_1991_zpsasoor76d.jpeg]

You should have posted a panda. They are better (except at surviving).

PS: I agree with you on pretty much all acounts.
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07-09-2015, 01:12 PM
RE: Anarchism
(07-09-2015 11:17 AM)daniel1948 Wrote:  Well, since there are, so far, no actual posts about anarchism in this thread since the OP deleted his, and since I'm bored, I will post my thoughts about anarchism. And I give my word that I will not delete this post. If it gets deleted, it won't be by me.

Anarchism is, as I understand it, the political philosophy that society does not require a coercive government, as well as the political system that would arise from the implementation of that philosophy. Communism, as propounded by Marx and Engels, is a marriage of anarchism with utopian socialism. They believed that after an intermediate evolutionary period, the state (i.e. government) would "whither away," and cease to exist, and that every person would contribute what labor he or she was capable of, and consume what he or she needed. ("From each according to his ability and to each according to his need.") Anarchism itself says nothing about what economic system should be established, but is an integral part of Communism, which specifies both the absence of the state and an economic system where all labor and all goods are shared equally and voluntarily.

In my youth I was a communist, because I regarded the system propounded by Marx and Engels (not the system extant in the U.S.S.R.) to be the most fair, just, and desirable of social organizations.

As I aged, however, I became more cynical about human nature. In the absence of coercive government, some individuals will take more than their share and contribute less. (The tragedy of the commons.) Some individuals will use violence to extract what they want from others. Others will form vigilante committees to hunt down and punish the perpetrators, and the seeds of government will spontaneously re-emerge. There will be quarrels and rivalries between neighboring committees, and tribal wars will break out. The winners will incorporate the territories of the losers. Some will integrate while others will subjugate those they've conquered. Eventually we'll reach the state we have now, where nations are large enough to be self-sustaining, at least for a time.

I still like the idea of Communism: I.e., a world-wide commune of equal sharing without coercion by any state entity. All decisions made by consensus so that aggregate institutions could not be called "government" because their purpose is to solve problems and set mutually-agreeded-upon standards. I have a friend who is a capitalist anarchist: he wants individual wealth, rather than sharing of all goods and labor, but thinks that government is evil and that everything useful that government does could be done better by non-coercive neighborhood committees. And I have another friend who is a Christian anarchist. He thinks people are basically good (he does not subscribe to notions of original sin or the inherent sinfulness of people) and that given a chance, they could live in harmony without government. He's actually very close to Marx and Engels, but with god in the picture.

I just don't think that anarchism (or Communism) could work in a world populated by humans. We've evolved over millions of years to struggle for limited resources, and while cooperation within family or tribal groups is part of our genetic make-up because it has enabled groups to thrive, we still have a visceral reaction to oppose rival families or tribes. I just don't think the level of cooperation needed for anarchism to be successful is human nature.

I welcome your thoughts.

And here's a picture of a bear.

[Image: IMG_1991_zpsasoor76d.jpeg]

Wonderful post, I disagree on a couple of points but they are mostly hypothetical as we both reach the same conclusion (An Anarchic society is untenable in the real world) I would go so far as to say that even if that pesky detail could be solved a complete lack of group level cooperation (which is indeed what government is at it's basest level) would prove disastrous if even a minor hiccup were to occur and would lead to untold suffering if a real disaster struck.

Human nature is tribal, hierarchically tribal at that, even those hippie communes tend to have at least a spiritual leader that the others turn to. A true Utopia would be a Socialist Democratic Republic with a strong constitution protecting the minority from the tyranny of the majority and a tight social safety net to help those who find themselves in a spot of trouble. Anarchy and Communism both attempt to force the river to flow uphill, People by their nature are not prone to universal sharing and without any incentive to do so there are quite a few that would hoard as opposed to share.

To counter your one friends Capitalistic Anarchy ask the following questions
1) Is the ownership of Property a thing?
They will answer yes, as it is a base tenant in that system.

2) Can you give your heirs the property you have acquired?
Again this is a tenant of their philosophy so the Answer again is Yes and that leads us to the following slam of the system.

3) What then is presenting 1 industrious family from over generations acquiring all the land in an area and setting up an Absolute Monarchy? They own the land so they should be free to do as they please on it and if not would that not require the use of force to prevent them from using their own property as they see fit?

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07-09-2015, 03:59 PM
RE: Anarchism
(07-09-2015 01:12 PM)Revenant77x Wrote:  To counter your one friends Capitalistic Anarchy ask the following questions
1) Is the ownership of Property a thing?
They will answer yes, as it is a base tenant in that system.

2) Can you give your heirs the property you have acquired?
Again this is a tenant of their philosophy so the Answer again is Yes and that leads us to the following slam of the system.

3) What then is presenting 1 industrious family from over generations acquiring all the land in an area and setting up an Absolute Monarchy? They own the land so they should be free to do as they please on it and if not would that not require the use of force to prevent them from using their own property as they see fit?

Indeed. A strictly anarchic capitalistic system (oxymoronic already, and inherently coercive to boot - but we'll ignore even those for the remainder of the sentence!) effectively equates capital with power; capital possesses its own gravity (tending to accumulate; not strictly gravitational per se since it isn't zero sum but whatever) and thus, if it may be inherited, systematic inequality is not only endorsed but fostered.

There is that old socialist joke:
An anarchist is somehow favours as little state power as is necessary to maintain all of their existing privilege.

...

There are a variety of neologisms (ranging from stupid to... very stupid; e.g. minarchist) describing putative dilutions of purist ideologue flavours with some pragmatism. They are all to some extent not just ideologue but idealist, although it's one I do happen to agree with.

(07-09-2015 01:12 PM)Revenant77x Wrote:  People by their nature are not prone to universal sharing and without any incentive to do so there are quite a few that would hoard as opposed to share.

Quite. But even then - it needn't be "people", it need only be a tiny fraction of people.

The crux of any issue of state power eventually comes to the questions:
What harm can be done by someone not playing along?
What can (ought!) to be done about someone not playing along?

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07-09-2015, 06:33 PM
RE: Anarchism
I like the idea of anarchy. It would allow me to accomplish my lifelong dream of forming a band of raiders and going around burning villages and stuff, comfortable in the fact that even those individuals willing to fight back would never be able to coordinate effectively enough to stop me.

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07-09-2015, 06:35 PM
RE: Anarchism
(07-09-2015 11:30 AM)epronovost Wrote:  You should have posted a panda. They are better (except at surviving).

Yeah, but I've never had the opportunity to take a picture of a panda in the wild, five meters away from me.

(07-09-2015 01:12 PM)Revenant77x Wrote:  
(07-09-2015 11:17 AM)daniel1948 Wrote:  Well, since there are, so far, no actual posts about anarchism in this thread since the OP deleted his, and since I'm bored, I will post my thoughts about anarchism. <...snip...>

... a complete lack of group level cooperation (which is indeed what government is at it's basest level) would prove disastrous if even a minor hiccup were to occur and would lead to untold suffering if a real disaster struck.

My friend, the religious anarchist, would say that anarchism is not the lack of organizations for group-level cooperation. It's only the lack of coercive organization. In his utopia, everything done by government today is accomplished voluntarily and through consensus.

So the only problem is that pesky human nature which prevents people from cooperating.

(07-09-2015 01:12 PM)Revenant77x Wrote:  Human nature is tribal, hierarchically tribal at that, even those hippie communes tend to have at least a spiritual leader that the others turn to. A true Utopia would be a Socialist Democratic Republic with a strong constitution protecting the minority from the tyranny of the majority and a tight social safety net to help those who find themselves in a spot of trouble.

Agreed, 100%

(07-09-2015 01:12 PM)Revenant77x Wrote:  To counter your one friends Capitalistic Anarchy ask the following questions
1) Is the ownership of Property a thing?
They will answer yes, as it is a base tenant in that system.

2) Can you give your heirs the property you have acquired?
Again this is a tenant of their philosophy so the Answer again is Yes and that leads us to the following slam of the system.

3) What then is presenting 1 industrious family from over generations acquiring all the land in an area and setting up an Absolute Monarchy? They own the land so they should be free to do as they please on it and if not would that not require the use of force to prevent them from using their own property as they see fit?

The capitalist anarchist was actually a friend of my parents. I don't believe he's still alive to ask. But my impression is that he was more an emotional anarchist than an intellectual one. He just didn't like government. He was honest to his principles, though: He spent WWII in prison for refusing the draft, and he never voluntarily paid his income tax. He filed his tax returns, and then refused to pay. Apparently it's not a criminal offense to refuse to pay as long as you file an honest return. So the government took the money, plus fees and penalties, but he figured it cost the government more to collect than the fees and penalties, so they ended up with less than if he'd paid. It cost him more, but he was happy because they ended up with less. He also grew his own peyote, and used it a couple of times a year. And considered himself a Buddhist, though I suspect that Buddhists would have disagreed.

His attitude was basically: Government: Leave me alone. I don't think he really gave any thought to how his anarchism would work. Maybe because he knew it would never happen. I deeply respected his pacifism, for which he spent several years in prison.

At first, they put him in a prison mainly (or entirely?) with other conscientious objectors. But those were mainly Jehovah's Witnesses and Seventh Day Adventists. And he got so sick of them constantly praying at him that he requested transfer to a proper prison, where he served out his time with respectable criminals as the prison librarian.

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nosotros por lágrimas."
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07-09-2015, 07:57 PM
RE: Anarchism
(07-09-2015 11:30 AM)epronovost Wrote:  You should have posted a panda. They are better ...

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07-09-2015, 09:33 PM
RE: Anarchism
The idea of anarchy and/or communism is stupid. Even in perfect theory form.
The idea that everyone is equal and everything everyone does is equal in society is stupid and I 100% disagree with it.
The idea that we are all equal sounds nice and is a nice way to think about things because it makes us think good about ourselves, that noone is better or worst than us. But anyone that's been to school can tell you that that's bullshit. There are people that are better at math, english, science etc.. than me. Hell, there are people that are better at first person shooter video games than me and I'm pretty fucking glorious. Likewise I am better at those things than other people.

The simple truth is that people are better at things than others and in a lot of cases that translates to being better at A LOT of things more than others or worse at A LOT of things. ie: Some sports star that also has a PhD in Engineering. That person is better at, well, life than most people. ie2: A meth addict who gives handjobs to feed their meth addicting. That person is shit at life compared to most people.

The point of this is that not everyone is equal and so shouldn't be treated at such. If you're a professional sports star with a PhD in Engineering you deserve to have a better life than a meth addict primary school drop out. It's that simple.

It is however societies (or governments more realistically) responsibility to eliminate outside factors that would hinder you from reaching your potential. ie: Not being born into a family where your mother is gonna inject you with meth when you're a baby to stop you from crying. Or to offer schoolarships to those that can't afford collage but would do well and benefit from going.

This is why I think the best system is to have one that rewards individuals for being awesome but doesn't neglect our most vulnerable citizens. aka: Capitalist socialism. ie: Switzerland, Sweden, Norway, Australia, NZ, Finland.
When you have too much of one extreme, ie: capitalism with no socialism or communism, you end up with negative effects. You need that balance and until someone offers up something better, Capitalist socialism is the best option.
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07-09-2015, 11:07 PM
RE: Anarchism
(07-09-2015 01:12 PM)Revenant77x Wrote:  3) What then is preventing 1 industrious family from over generations acquiring all the land in an area and setting up an Absolute Monarchy?
...

100% Death Tax
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