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Politics!

Re: Politics!
« Reply #30 on: January 11, 2011, 04:57:06 PM »
Quote from: "elliebean"
I'm not the best at explaining it, but this sumarizes my view on it:

(from An Anarchist FAQ)
Quote from: "Brian Morris"
   The term anarchy comes from the Greek, and essentially means 'no ruler.' Anarchists are people who reject all forms of government or coercive authority, all forms of hierarchy and domination. They are therefore opposed to what the Mexican anarchist Flores Magon called the 'sombre trinity' -- state, capital and the church. Anarchists are thus opposed to both capitalism and to the state, as well as to all forms of religious authority. But anarchists also seek to establish or bring about by varying means, a condition of anarchy, that is, a decentralised society without coercive institutions, a society organised through a federation of voluntary associations. ["Anthropology and Anarchism," pp. 35-41, Anarchy: A Journal of Desire Armed, no. 45, p. 38]

If the author means by 'capital', the means of production, then his statement is nonsensical that anarchists must be against "state, capital and church."  This would mean that anarchists could have no production.  To be an anarchist under this definition in the strictest sense, one would have to be a hunter/gatherer who used only his bare hands to maintain his subsistence.

Anarchocapitalism is a system wherein individuals possess and control property and voluntarily combine to engage in large scale productive efforts without compulsion.  No individual can be compelled by the state to dispose of his property, time, or labor in any way.  The individual is free to do so in that way which he/she sees fit.  Anarchocapitalism is precisely "a condition of anarchy, that is, a decentralised society without coercive institutions, a society organised through a federation of voluntary associations."

The voluntary combination of capital in the effort of large scale production certainly would fall directly inline with this definition of anarchy.  To be opposed to such voluntary associations one would have to oppose anarchy.  What the author means by 'capitalism' remains unclear.  But it cannot mean a social system based on a market economy (which is the definition I am using.)

-a-train

Re: Politics!
« Reply #31 on: January 11, 2011, 08:13:41 PM »
Quote from: "a-train"
If the author means by 'capital', the means of production...
Pretty sure he doesn't.

It isn't the production itself, but the exploitation of it that anarchists would abolish. That can happen only if the means of production is owned by the workers who use them.
[size=150]—Ellie [/size]
You can’t lie to yourself. If you do you’ve only fooled a deluded person and where’s the victory in that?—Ricky Gervais

Re: Politics!
« Reply #32 on: January 11, 2011, 10:13:10 PM »
Quote from: "elliebean"
Quote from: "a-train"
If the author means by 'capital', the means of production...
Pretty sure he doesn't.

It isn't the production itself, but the exploitation of it that anarchists would abolish. That can happen only if the means of production is owned by the workers who use them.

So you would advocate a system wherein workers are free to accumulate and control capital, correct?

That is anarchocapitalism.

-a-train

Re: Politics!
« Reply #33 on: January 12, 2011, 04:51:38 AM »
Quote from: "a-train"
Quote from: "elliebean"
Quote from: "a-train"
If the author means by 'capital', the means of production...
Pretty sure he doesn't.

It isn't the production itself, but the exploitation of it that anarchists would abolish. That can happen only if the means of production is owned by the workers who use them.

So you would advocate a system wherein workers are free to accumulate and control capital, correct?

That is anarchocapitalism.

-a-train
I understand the words you're saying, but I don't know what you mean. I guess I need to read up on anarchocapitalism myself.  :sigh:  For that matter, I'll need a refresher on anarchocommunism and (more to the roots of my thinking) anarchosyndicalism. Sorry, you'll have to bear with me; I've taken a few too many blows to the ol' noggin over the years.
[size=150]—Ellie [/size]
You can’t lie to yourself. If you do you’ve only fooled a deluded person and where’s the victory in that?—Ricky Gervais

Re: Politics!
« Reply #34 on: January 12, 2011, 07:41:42 PM »
Quote from: "elliebean"
I understand the words you're saying, but I don't know what you mean. I guess I need to read up on anarchocapitalism myself.  :sigh:  For that matter, I'll need a refresher on anarchocommunism and (more to the roots of my thinking) anarchosyndicalism. Sorry, you'll have to bear with me; I've taken a few too many blows to the ol' noggin over the years.

Anarchocommunism would be a system without any economy.  No person would have property rights, nor rights regarding his/her labor.  In fact, no rights at all.  Such a society is simply incomprehensible.  If it somehow existed, it would rapidly transform into either anarchocapitalism or (more likely) some sort of statism or despotism.

Anarchosyndicalism would be anarchocommunism with trade unions.  Individuals would not have rights, but trade unions would.  This also would also eventually be anarchocapitalism, or (more likely) some sort of statism or despotism.

Anarchocapitalism is the market economy.  Each individual in such a system owns himself, his/her labor, and the product of his/her labor: formally known as life, liberty, and property.  With that, the individual has the right to defend his/her own life, liberty, and property.  These rights are neither granted nor protected by any state, they are natural.  Individuals in this system are free to associate, making trade unions, corporations, firms, co-ops, whatever sorts of organizations they volunteer to create and maintain.  Those who do not volunteer are not compelled by any state or threat of violence.  Anarchocapitalism is the economic system of libertarianism, formally known as classical liberalism.

-a-train

LegendarySandwich

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Re: Politics!
« Reply #35 on: January 15, 2011, 09:50:51 PM »
This is kind of interesting.

I've heard that Denmark is socialist, and it is also one of the happiest countries in the world. Maybe socialism works after all. Your thoughts?

Re: Politics!
« Reply #36 on: January 15, 2011, 11:57:10 PM »
Quote from: "a-train"
Anarchocommunism would be a system without any economy.  No person would have property rights, nor rights regarding his/her labor.  In fact, no rights at all.
How do you figure?
Quote
Such a society is simply incomprehensible.
Even if I agreed with your assessment, the least I could say is that it would be no less comprehensible that what exists right now.
Quote
If it somehow existed, it would rapidly transform into either anarchocapitalism or (more likely) some sort of statism or despotism.
How?

Quote
Anarchocapitalism is the market economy.  Each individual in such a system owns himself, his/her labor, and the product of his/her labor: formally known as life, liberty, and property.  With that, the individual has the right to defend his/her own life, liberty, and property.  These rights are neither granted nor protected by any state, they are natural.  Individuals in this system are free to associate, making trade unions, corporations, firms, co-ops, whatever sorts of organizations they volunteer to create and maintain.  Those who do not volunteer are not compelled by any state or threat of violence.  Anarchocapitalism is the economic system of libertarianism, formally known as classical liberalism.

From what I've seen of your posts in another discussion, we're apparently using completely different definitions of words like "capital" and "capitalism"; So there may be, and I would like to think there is, less disagreement between us in concepts than in semantics. Either that, or you're calling "rights" and "property rights" what I call "class privilege" and "ability to oppress".  :blink:

I should have thought of becoming a freelance artist sooner. Too bad I lack adequate facilities to complete a commission in a timely manner (sorry, Asmodean!), a condition which severely limits my income potential.

One need not be "compelled by any state or [overt] threats of violence" in light of what one can reasonably predict, with even but a little imagination, to be the outcome of living any length of time without "gainful employment" in such a society (in fact, I had multiple jobs throughout many of my worst hardships). Is our understanding of the principle of non-coersion that different, or is there (as usual) something in your position I've failed to apprehend?

Sorry, but my take on capitalism is shaped by the only system I've seen my whole life, the American one; and depite my earnestness to achieve at least a modest living, the only outcomes I'm familiar with are 1) those like mine or worse, and 2) those whose privilege is such that they cannot comprehend how one could meet with any less material success than theirs through any fault but one's own, under such a "fair" and "egalitarian" system.

And yes, I am bitter.

But I was already an anarchist before any of that.  :P


And before I get embarrassed I freely admit that I barely know anything about the topics we're discussing here, so consider this part of my education and please be as clear and concise in your rebuttal as possible, and kindly ask for clarification of terms I may have used incorrectly before charging me with inconsistency or whatever... I'm really, really bad at this subject, which is why I don't really frequent anarchist newsgroups anymore.
[size=150]—Ellie [/size]
You can’t lie to yourself. If you do you’ve only fooled a deluded person and where’s the victory in that?—Ricky Gervais

Re: Politics!
« Reply #37 on: January 16, 2011, 03:32:00 AM »
Quote from: "elliebean"
Quote from: "a-train"
Anarchocommunism would be a system without any economy.  No person would have property rights, nor rights regarding his/her labor.  In fact, no rights at all.
How do you figure?
Property is outlawed under communism.  No person is free to take up any means of production and engage in production (labor).

Quote from: "elliebean"
Quote
If it somehow existed, it would rapidly transform into either anarchocapitalism or (more likely) some sort of statism or despotism.
How?
It would require that every individual in the system submit themselves to the system.  Groups of conspirators would more easily steal and take advantage of the system because individuals do not account for their own personal wealth (they don't have any).  And if there is no state to account for that wealth, who is left to watch the kitty?  Nobody.  A thief's paradise.

Quote from: "elliebean"
From what I've seen of your posts in another discussion, we're apparently using completely different definitions of words like "capital" and "capitalism"; So there may be, and I would like to think there is, less disagreement between us in concepts than in semantics. Either that, or you're calling "rights" and "property rights" what I call "class privilege" and "ability to oppress".  :hmm:

Capital: a good or goods produced for the purpose of production - examples: a hammer for use in building houses, a press for use in making t-shirts.

Capitalism: the use of capital to engage in production - examples: the use of a hammer in building houses, the use of a press in making t-shirts.

"Capitalism" really needs a qualifier.  "State capitalism": the state owns and/or controls capital.  "Laissez-faire capitalism": individuals own capital and are free to accumulate it or dispose of it in any way they can as they see fit.

Property rights are titles to ownership obtained either by one's own production or the consensual trade with others.  In a market economy, property rights are not granted by any arbiter based on any class distinction.

Since you so graciously shared some of your personal life story, I'll do the same briefly.  My father was murdered when I was six, my mother was left a widow with three children (I was the oldest, one sister was 5 and the other was 6 months) at the age of 25.  She was not good with money and although she got a good insurance payment and a nice payout from Dad's partners in a small business, she was penniless and laden with debt within a few years.  When I was 9 we lived in a tiny two bedroom apartment and I got my first job.  I've been employed almost without any break since.  Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, FedEx, AT&T, Bayer, Harrah's Casino, Marriott Hotels, these are just some of the companies I've worked for.

I saved and started my own business.  It is alive and well today, but it has not come through the recession without any pain.  And just before it started (in 2007) I left my business to do other things.  I still own 45% of it, but I have not worked at it or taken a dime from it since 2007.  I have a wife and two kids.  The recession hasn't been easy.  But we are working as best we can.

My main reason for leaving the business is school.  My major is economics, I am a sophomore, (school takes longer when you work full time).  In 2009, I worked two jobs while going to school.  It was really rough.  I don't think I can do that again.

Anyway, I don't blame the recession on the free market.  I don't blame the free market for the number of Americans that endure hardship.  What we have going on now in America is not free markets at all.  Corporate America has bought Washington.  Corporate America keeps profits and gives losses to the taxpayers.  This is not free-market capitalism, its crony-capitalism.  It's state intervention on behalf of those the state loves.  In some cases it is downright socialism, in others it is fascism.

What we need is more constraint on government.  A constitutional amendment should prevent the government from giving businesses subsidies of any kind.  GM for example makes mistakes that lead to insolvency, so what is the solution?  Go to the government and get them to force everyone else, including employees of competing car companies, to bail them out.  That is not free-market capitalism at all.  Now the troubles that the market would have contained at GM are spread throughout the economy.  The same is true for a thousand other problems which government heaps upon the general public.

I'm not a Republican or a Democrat.  I'm an American.  Neither party seems to differ from the crony system I described.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2011, 08:28:08 AM by a-train »

LegendarySandwich

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Re: Politics!
« Reply #38 on: January 16, 2011, 06:16:37 AM »
Quote from: "LegendarySandwich"
This is kind of interesting.

I've heard that Denmark is socialist, and it is also one of the happiest countries in the world. Maybe socialism works after all. Your thoughts?

Re: Politics!
« Reply #39 on: January 16, 2011, 08:58:14 AM »
Quote from: "LegendarySandwich"
Quote from: "LegendarySandwich"
This is kind of interesting.

I've heard that Denmark is socialist, and it is also one of the happiest countries in the world. Maybe socialism works after all. Your thoughts?
Denmark has a mixed economy, it is not a socialist state.  In fact, I am not aware that any industry is nationalized in Denmark.  It embraces free trade and has very open product markets and the freest financial market in the EU.  But it is a major welfare state with some of the highest taxes on the planet.

-a-train

LegendarySandwich

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Re: Politics!
« Reply #40 on: February 13, 2011, 05:53:13 AM »
I've taken a bunch of political quizzes today, and all/most of them have described me as a socialist.

Huh.

Sophus

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Re: Politics!
« Reply #41 on: February 13, 2011, 07:55:30 AM »
Quote from: "LegendarySandwich"
I've taken a bunch of political quizzes today, and all/most of them have described me as a socialist.

Huh.
What's wrong with socialism?
‎"Christian doesn't necessarily just mean good. It just means better." - John Oliver

LegendarySandwich

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Re: Politics!
« Reply #42 on: February 13, 2011, 07:58:07 AM »
Quote from: "Sophus"
Quote from: "LegendarySandwich"
I've taken a bunch of political quizzes today, and all/most of them have described me as a socialist.

Huh.
What's wrong with socialism?
When did I ever imply there was something wrong with it? I guess I'm officially a socialist now, so obviously I like it.

Re: Politics!
« Reply #43 on: February 14, 2011, 10:08:19 PM »
There should be a political party known as "The Jeffersons."

A celibate clergy is an especially good idea, because it tends to suppress any hereditary propensity toward fanaticism.
-Carl Sagan

I loved when Bush came out and said, "We are losing the war against drugs." You know what that implies? There's a war being fought, and the people on drugs are winning it.
- Bill Hicks