Saturday, November 10, 2012


Generally, I'd support a system where small communities--less than 50 thousand, maybe?--were able to pass laws that superseded larger jurisdictions.  Naturally, we might draw the line at murder, but I'd like to see this kind of shift take place everywhere.  It doesn't happen, but give us the option.

And if we want to assist those who move elsewhere, just fine.  The system can be voluntarized as much as we like.


  1. I think the Articles of Confederation would have agreed, especially when you compare that document to the Constitution.

  2. Why draw the line at "murder"?

    If a fundamentalist community wants to kill the gays or the heretics, as an "anarchist" one has to say "go for it, boys". Or murder teenage girls when they are seen looking at boys from the "wrong" caste. After all, when we eliminate "the State", village headmen and religious texts will be the governing doctrines, no?

  3. You have to operationally define "anarchist." Crow's said that people will take care of it in ad-hoc posses. I say that's a state, too, and ditto village headmen and religious interpreters. "State" is merely what we call the largest power around, I say, though this point is widely argued.

    I want individuals to maximize their power. I don't like the scenario you describe, but I grant the point you make about the possibility of it arising, and that's why I say we need to consider what comes after. After all, most states die only to be replaced by another.

  4. But the problem is...this is not a case of the situation "arising" is the default position in human history and now.

    Is maximizing individuals as stand alone beings even possible? Or is this a religious end state similar to all other millenarian faiths. Rousseau was a fraud. Human beings have never, with a few exceptions, existed as autonomous individuals (in a state of nature). For most of our history, we existed in tightly bound clan groupings, which evolved over time into states. None of these groupings have been particularly free or devoted to maximizing individualism. Most cultures would even find that concept unthinkable. It is all about "honor" of the kin group, serving "god", following the god-given dictates of "the ancestors" or "the king".

    Of course, the system of control and power in modern capitalist society is far more all encompassing and even totalitarian. But, the reality of starvation or violent death outside said kin groups or bands or families was present in the old days as well.

    I am not defending modern states in any way. I am being unhelpfully skeptical, of course :) I really enjoy your writing!

  5. Oh, no worries. Anarchism should be challenged, because my kind of anarchism says that everything should be challenged. Let me think on what you're saying a little more, because I'm not sure I'm being clear about how little I'm saying; I thought I was making a very provisional, un-idealistic observation.

  6. I certainly look forward to more of your explorations!

  7. This reminded me of our discussion last month. Sadly.