So many Ancaps...

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Noah Fence's picture
Noah Fence
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Apr 14 2013 06:54

This is fucking bullshit.
Nanner, you know me well enough, our PM exchanges have been incredibly interesting and you know that I am here in good faith and that admire your knowledge and intellect. After having been so candid with you, you also know my personal reasons for cutting people some slack and trying not to judge - it's not just some intellectual execise, liberalism for the sake of liberalism but a practical way of getting through life and dealing with relationships. You also know that I am not a supporter of ancap - my first couple of posts on this thread are clear enough.
The problem here is that your posts have been simple abuse. Anyone can be abusive in their own way but it will ALWAYS detract from their argument. Since I've been on Libcom I've tried to refrain from being abusive. I have been abusive about peoples politics for decades and I dare say my own sarcastic style has had it's amusing moments but really only demonstrated that my theory was lacking substance. Now, I know better than that of you but that's the impression you give when you get in this mode. Seriously mate, you come across as though you swallowed the A-Z of political history and then lit a stick of dynamite up your arse. It's embarrasing.
Honestly, I get the picture of you jumping up and down on the spot shaking with fury at what you THINK Notrueliberal is like. You accuse him of priveledge. I presume by that you mean he hasn't known hardship? Well if that's his circumstances what is he suppossed to do? Throw himself on the streets so that he is at one with the proles? Get fucking real! I thought that a common desire here was for better conditions, better pay and better lifestyle? Listen, when I'm working full time I earn £6-800 per week before tax. Am I earning too much? Am I too comfortable? Am I now middle class? Do I need to take a pay cut before I'm allowed an opinion, or am I allowed in the club anyway as I've worked in a factory and lived on the streets in the past? Maybe I'm a 'class traitor' because I no longer sleep in a telephone box!
I am saying this in good faith. You need to take off the hair shirt, climb down the ladder from the moral high ground and just fucking live a little.
As for everyone else, do none of you take exception to this? Is anything acceptable as long as it is acted by someone that's on your side? Fucking hell, this thread has been like a gang of skinheads with a yapping fucking pitbull at the front!

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Noah Fence
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Apr 14 2013 07:12

Actually, I'm taking this one back

Quote:
this thread has been like a gang of skinheads

because it's unfair and inaccurate. Sorry.

I'm leaving this in though

Quote:
yapping fucking pitbull at the front!

becuase it is spot on.

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Apr 14 2013 07:44

There's a lot here but a couple of points I'd like to pick up on.

As pointed out earlier, a lot of the reaction you're getting is a legacy of previous "ancaps" who've posted here making largely identical points and which have often turned into complete train-wrecks. With that in mind the following threads might be of interest since they touch on a lot of the same topics:

http://libcom.org/forums/organise/founding-anarcho-communist-communal-en...

http://libcom.org/forums/general/reading-recommendations-fellow-anarchis...

Both threads are quite lengthy but they may be relevant. Note this isn't intended as a dismissive, only that it might help address some questions you may have - and also that it may shed some light on the response you're getting now.

edit: I'd also echo what Webby said re: Nanner (posted while I was writing). seriously, chill the fuck out.

A few specific points from your more recent posts:

Quote:
The principle here, what I want to get at. Is this, you see employment as coercion, I don't, presumbably the people who work for me don't either. (FYI I don't own a business, I'm just some hired help, probably like the majority here). If the people who work for me agree that working isn't coercion then what's it to you, what we do? What stake is there for a communist in the affairs of non communists? I have absolutely no stake in your affiars, which is why whether I agree or not with you guys I don't care. You know?

That's quite a presumption and one I'm not sure is accurate.

For my part, I've been unemployed for a while but my last job involved my getting up at 4am in order to go to a supermarket and do other people's shopping for them. Funnily enough this wasn't really what I wanted to with my life; the only reason I did it was in order to have enough money to pay rent and bills, with (hopefully) enough left over for a pint or two at the end of the week.

In other words, I was having to do something I had no desire to do and which had little real social value, solely because otherwise I would be unable to feed and house myself. This may not be coercive in the sense of having a literal gun to my head, but it is coercive in a wider sense - and I don't see how an "ancap" society would make this better (if anything it would make it worse, in that I wouldn't have access to even the basic protections given by our current society - protections that were fought for and won by workers in struggle.)

Which gets back to the problem with this idea of "voluntary association". Yes, in theory an employer and an employee are entering into a voluntary contract; but when one side's choices are to voluntarily associate or starve, the "voluntary" bit becomes a little shallow.

As far as why communists would care about others engaging in capitalism, there's various reasons. For starters, as pointed out earlier, the idea of society being a series of discrete individuals or communities existing in a vacuum simply doesn't match with reality. Say there's some sort of natural disaster; the communist answer would be for people to band together and help one another by putting what resources we have at our disposal to the best use for the community as a whole. This however would run headlong into capitalists' desire for property rights; property rights that would almost certainly, as they are today, be enforced through violence.

Rather than through state police or army, an "ancap" society would (I assume?) have to replace these forces through private companies - in order to protect property rights. A situation where an individual large-scale property owner, with ambitions for more property and wealth, has a private militia at their disposal would be a clear danger to a communist society nearby.

More generally however the idea that employers and employees would simply be happy, independent individuals associating and dissociating at will simply doesn't seem at all feasible, in either a statist or "anarcho" capitalist society. And when a conflict between workers and capitalists inevitably took place, we wouldn't be very good anarchists to just stand by and watch...

Quote:
I fail to see how voting to control people isn't coercive, and isn't a State.

And I fail to see how denying the basic necessities of life to those who can't afford them isn't coercive.

Quote:
I think you guys are anarchists, just like I am, I hate the no true scotsman fallacy.

What I dislike more, if anything, is what could be described as the "'No True Scotsman Fallacy' fallacy" - i.e. that inherently any time we say something isn't truly anarchist then it must just be a fallacy by definition. "National Anarchists" are not anarchists, nor are "anarcho-capitalists"...just because sometimes people use it as a fallacy or to stifle debate doesn't mean we can't have a meaningful discussion about whether certain ideas should properly be seen as part of the anarchist tradition.

(I feel the same about Godwin's Law; yes, comparisons to the Nazis are often used for hyperbolic and flawed reasons, that doesn't mean such comparisons are inevitably wrong.)

I'm also not sure where you get the idea people "hate" you. We don't. We just disagree and are often quite assertive in doing so.

I'd also be interested if you could shed a bit more light on the examples you gave earlier in this thread about Cambodia and Acupoulco.

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Chilli Sauce
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Apr 14 2013 08:55
notrueanarchist wrote:
FYI I don't own a business, I'm just some hired help, probably like the majority here

You mean you're a wage slave?

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I have no idea who Margret Thatcher is, or was

You don't know who Margaret Thatcher is?!?

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Joseph Kay
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Apr 14 2013 09:01
Chilli Sauce wrote:
Quote:
I have no idea who Margret Thatcher is, or was

You don't know who Margaret Thatcher is?!?

NannerNannerNan...
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Apr 14 2013 10:25

Okay, webby's right. As much as I don't like right-wingers, I'm being wildly intolerant and super-angry at this guy for existing. I just sort have a file in my mind that sez "People I don't agree with" inside the cabinet "people I HATE HATE HATE". Just because this guy has some really terrible beliefs dooesn't mean he's personally awful. For all I know, he could be a volunteer at a homeless shelter or someone who constantly gives to charity. He might just be misguided.

I might as well be yelling at a cartoon caricature. I shouldn't be so angry at this guy. I still think it's morally wrong to believe in such a thing, and I don't support it at all. I'm going to quit being so angry and abusive and just argue in good faith. I apologize, notrueliberal, for assuming that you're just a secret capitalist who's just so right-wing out of rational self-interest. I'll stop being so angry and just engage in a rational argument.

The "non-aggression axiom" Is the biggest load I ever heard of, the very essence liberal theology. It's the idea that a person owning a gigantic latifundia would be the victim if his poorly paid quasi-serf workers took the land from him. It's the idea that a violent pornographer would be in the right if the government banned him from making any movie at all. It's the idea that it' s morally right to destroy society, but it's wrong to "limit someone's freedom" in order to stop it. It's the idea that all of society needs to be subjected to the will of individuals rather than the other way around.

Look at the Spanish Civil War. To say it started because of a political diagreement (Hobshawm) is completely wrong, it started because of a fascist coup plot backed by huge landowners, the bourgeoisie, the church, the army, and many elements of the state apparatus. They were sick of workers "causing trouble" and, one could say, "limiting" their "freedom" to exploit them ruthlessly. One could say that the terror that followed in Nationalist territory (and eventually all of spain) was simply the propertied classes pre-emptively defending their rights to use their property and their workers the way they wanted to. Under the moral sanction of the non-aggression axiom, the anarchists and socialists were the coercive ones and the propertied class was trying to defend their freedoms.

I don't think that's freedom. I don't think capitalists and landowners and whatever using their freedom to kill workers are freedom-loving individuals, even though their workers are apparently tyrants for taking their land (under the NAP they are!) The real "coercive" individuals in any situation like that would be the capitalists exploiting workers and telling them that, if they don't like it, they can go hungry until they find another one. According to the non-aggression axiom, a manager who's abusive towards his workers is morally right because that worker "consents" to being there. Poor women who are sexually harassed by bosses shouldn't complain because, according to the non-aggression axiom, they can "always leave".

The non-aggression axiom is a fundamentally inhumane moral system. It's a rejection of the interests of society in defense of might making right. It's not a rebuke of "coercion" but a defense of the powerful. I don't think any anarchist who's had to deal with poverty or bosses or whatever would give a shit about it. Rejecting democracy itself is the logical conclusion of such beliefs.

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commieprincess
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Apr 14 2013 10:39

Nevermind

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Chilli Sauce
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Apr 14 2013 10:42

"The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread."

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Apr 14 2013 19:44

NTR, don't know if you're still around, but if you are I want to apologize for telling you to eff off earlier in the thread. It was unnecessary.

I wanted to comment on this because I think it gets to the bottom of our disagreement with you and is probably why people got their back up about you calling yourself an anarchist:

Quote:
Unless you're saying that you can't build production facilities and what not that you need to produce goods, and establish services on the division of labour. If you are saying that your system can't do that, are you then admiting that Capitalism is necessary for the establishment of your society? You just need to take the fruits of labour of the capitalists inorder to establish a communist society?

We did build those things. Capitalism is the organised and systematic theft of the labour of the working class. We want to expropriate the property and wealth of the capitalist class--the property and wealth that we created--and use it for the collective benefit of society.

You commented that you want to live in a post-scarcity world. We could easily do that if we eliminated unproductive work and applied technology and machinery toward eliminating dangerous work and reducing overall working hours. We could then allow people to gravitate towards the work they find most appealing with the proviso that undesirable work will have to be split between able bodies.

And then, bang, 20 hours of work a week, the continued relaxation of oppressive social morality, and it's all nude beaches from there on out. wink

I really think you should start by reading the Anarchist FAQ or The ABC of Anarchism or even something like Abolish Restaurants.

Kharbaan
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Apr 14 2013 18:52

Wow, it's really disappointing to see how immature some of the people were in dealing with notrueliberal. At least at RevLeft he would have been sent to a gulag and debated there, you guys were just outright rude to him..

notrueliberal
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Apr 15 2013 00:24

Well after some hours of consideration I decided to come back. And so here I am.

First of all as I understand it there are several points at which we disagree.

I see Man as a species of individuals. Homo Sapian Sapian, is not Linepithema humile. Humanity is made up of individuals. We are not ants. Society is not an ant hill.

"The non-aggression axiom is a fundamentally inhumane moral system. It's a rejection of the interests of society in defense of might making right. It's not a rebuke of "coercion" but a defense of the powerful. I don't think any anarchist who's had to deal with poverty or bosses or whatever would give a shit about it. Rejecting democracy itself is the logical conclusion of such beliefs."

I disagree with it being inhumane, we can argue about that at some point in the future.
Society doesn't have any interests. There are people who have interests, and these people in acting form society. I don't see society as magic, driven by a "collective" will. Society forms because it is far more effiecient to combine efforts than it is to be a Robinson Crusoe. This is the division of labour, specialization. A shoe maker makes shoes because he is good at it. The shoe maker isn't a dairy farmer because maybe he hates cows or whatever.

"In defense of might making right" and democracy is different?

"It's not a rebuke of 'coercion' but a defense of the powerful" On contrary, everyone to my mind has negative rights, not just the powerful. Am I saying bad things never happen and that it's immpossible for rich men to hire thugs to go about subjugating people? No, I'm not that naive.

"Rejecting democracy itself is the logical conclusion of such beliefs." Yes it is. That is absolutely true. Is it morally right for people to vote for someone's murder? If 50%+1 votes came in that said "We should kill Nanner" would it be okay for a goon squad to go to your home, break down the door and shoot you? I don't think so. Majority rule, is still rule, it calls for the sacrifice of the few to the majority. Is it okay for people to vote and tell others how to live their lives? Currently in the United States there is the debate over gay marriage. Conservatives think that it is their business to tell people who they can and cannot have sex with. I say it's no one's business, other than the adults involved. Thus far however the majority has said NO! And I say this is unjust. I don't think the majority has any right to tell me what I can and can't do in my home, nor do I think they have the right to tell anyone else either. Similarly I don't think that the majority has the right to tell people what they can put in their bodies, and can't. In the United States it is illegal to sell and consume raw milk. I think this is ridiculous. It's also illegal to smoke weed in most states, and again I say this is ridiculous. Do I think smoking Meth is a good idea? No I don't, but it's also none of my business.

You say about the NAP "It's the idea that it's morally right to destroy society" without the individual there is no society. The NAP is there to protect the individual. Sure there are plenty of examples of it not working. There are plenty of examples of communism not working. Is that an argument?

"According to the non-aggression axiom, a manager who's abusive towards his workers is morally right because that worker "consents" to being there." No, at least I don't think that's okay, nor do I think that's what the NAP says. If a manager beats his employee, the employee would be within his rights to fight back, or if he is weak and unable too, he would be in his rights to get someone strong to do it.

"For all I know, he could be a volunteer at a homeless shelter or someone who constantly gives to charity." I don't volunteer at a homeless shelter. However I have volunteered on the local fire department. And while I refuse to give to charity (way too many scams) I do give food to the homeless and poor. I also give them money when I have it. I don't do this because I feel obligated too. When I was a kid my family was so poor, because my grandma had cancer and those drugs are expensive, that we had to grow our own food to have something to eat. I took care of my grandma from the age of 9 until she died when I was 18, I never knew when I came home whether she would greet me or if I would walk in on a corpse. I have expierenced hardship, and I have been poor. Now days I scrape by, but I'm working to improve my lot in life.

You guys say I'm not an anarchist because I am a capitalist, I could say the same thing about ya'll. That you aren't anarchists because you believe in democracy. After all what the US and Britian have today is democratic. Not direct democracy sure, but it works in the same way. Again majority rule is still rule.

"You commented that you want to live in a post-scarcity world. We could easily do that if we eliminated unproductive work and applied technology and machinery toward eliminating dangerous work and reducing overall working hours. We could then allow people to gravitate towards the work they find most appealing with the proviso that undesirable work will have to be split between able bodies."

Scarcity is not do to "unproductive work" scarcity exists because the universe is finite. Men have unlimited wants and desires, and there are finite resources to get this done. Furthermore who gets to decide what is "unproductive work"? In addition to my mind eliminating dangerous work when possible should be a goal. A business if it's run by someone who isn't a moron, doesn't want it's workers hurt, because then they can't work. Furthermore, the business owner should want his workers to be happy. Because if they are happy they'll be more productive. Is this always the case? Nope, there are alot of assholes, and stupid people out there. I don't think anyone can deny that.

I don't think I've ever met anyone who wants to work. I don't think I ever will, because lazing about doing nothing is always going to be more desirable than work.

It seems like you guys are equating fuedalism to capitalism in some ways. Like the capitalist is the lord of a castle and the workers are the serfs. Well I share your disdain for fuedalism. What exists today is fuedal certainly as well. We have what I call crony capitalism, we have the rich businessmen using their money to pay off government officials, inorder to reduce competition. So that they can charge more for crappier goods. In other words they use the government to create monopolies. Only through coercive action can a monopoly exist. And that remains true if you are like me and don't define property as coercive.

I see property as extending from self ownership in my mind. If I own myself I must be able to own property in order to sustain myself. If I can't own property then my life is in someone elses' hands and I am their slave. If the majority gets to decide what I can and cannot have then I am a slave to that majority. It doesn't matter if there is one tyrant or one thousand. I have absolutely no desire to be anyone's slave.

If we don't have private property then theft doesn't exist. Property is what gives theft it's meaning. Without property would it be wrong for me to break into a house and take stuff. If so why?

Peace be with you!

notrueliberal
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Apr 15 2013 00:35

The thing that I am trying to get accross here is that I don't see our positions as mutually exclusive. I see democracy as coercive, and immoral, but if ya'll want to live in one good for you. The question is are you guys capable of the same curtosy? If you are then even if we disagree on stuff, that doesn't mean we need to kill eachother.

I hope that makes sense, to you guys.

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A Wotsit
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Apr 15 2013 01:29

I keep planning to get involved in this thread but it moves too quick for me. Glad to see some appeals for calm! Just to pick up one area.

Quote:
I see Man as a species of individuals.

People don't just pop into existence out of thin air, find a pristine wilderness and make something of it for themselves. All production and reproduction is social. We rely on each other and social production from before we are even born until we die. It therefore makes sense to make sure we all have the opportunity to fine-tune our social activities as equals, and collaborate to ensure we each contribute to the best of our abilities and help each other meet our needs. You can't do that by saying 'this bit of the world is mine, all mine- maybe I'll let you make use of it if you make a profit for me'. It's just not sensible or logical. We need to cooperate to maximise our wellbeing and potential by using our individual skills to transform the common world we share. Private ownership of the means of production is being anti-social, to the detriment of all who share human social existence- because one individual does not know what is best for the rest of us- this has to be decided through social activity. Of course we exist as individuals but we have to share the means of production, the commons, because we can't meet our needs individually, only socially.

notrueliberal
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Apr 15 2013 01:34

"And I fail to see how denying the basic necessities of life to those who can't afford them isn't coercive."

Is it coercive to sit on my ass and not do anything? Is it coercive to not lift a sack off of another guys shoulders? Is failing to help someone coercive?

A right is not an obligation.

notrueliberal
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Apr 15 2013 02:13

A Wotsit,

You say that an individual cannot decide what is best for the rest of us. I am not proposing that an individual decides what is the best for you. I'm saying you decide what's best for you.

On the inverse are you saying that a collective, a group, made of people who might not even know me, can decide what's best for me?

As I said before society isn't magic, society exists because the division of labour is more effiecent then solitary production. Hermits exist and live by themselves, it is possible to do so. But men come together and form society because it is more efficient.

You say that all production is social. This is an observably false idea. As I said hermits exist. While it is true that traditional reproduction takes exactly two people (is that society, I don't know, maybe) however givin the level of technology today all one needs is a donor. In other words, you don't have to know the mother or father of your baby. Hell it's concievable that a virgin could have a kid.

notrueliberal
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Apr 15 2013 03:29

LOL sure but does that refute my point that the Hermit lives and produces goods, his clothes, tools, food, house etc... By himself?

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jonthom
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Apr 15 2013 04:37
notrueliberal wrote:
"And I fail to see how denying the basic necessities of life to those who can't afford them isn't coercive."

Is it coercive to sit on my ass and not do anything? Is it coercive to not lift a sack off of another guys shoulders? Is failing to help someone coercive?

A right is not an obligation.


Voluntary association

Ancap: anarchism for the rich, fascism for the poor.

notrueliberal
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Apr 15 2013 04:52

iexist,

My point isn't to say that man is a magic being that just pops into existence. Fully clothed and educated, without any need for support.

I'm not saying that at all, what I am simply saying is that it's obvious to even a casual observer that production is not purely societal.

Sure the majority of production occurs in society because, due to the division of labour it is more efficient for it to happen that way. Again society does not exist because of a magic collective will, it exists because of the division of labour, and of course evolution.

notrueliberal
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Apr 15 2013 04:55

So is the goal of communism then to make everyone equally poor? Is that what you're saying, jonthom?

Personally I always thought the saying "communism where we're all equally poor" was just rhetoric without merit. Maybe I was wrong... Please correct me, if I'm misunderstanding your meaning...

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jonthom
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Apr 15 2013 05:04
notrueliberal wrote:
So is the goal of communism then to make everyone equally poor? Is that what you're saying, jonthom?

Personally I always thought the saying "communism where we're all equally poor" was just rhetoric without merit. Maybe I was wrong... Please correct me, if I'm misunderstanding your meaning...

no.

the goal of communism is, put simply, to ensure that we all have access to the things we need in life, and that work and resources will be distributed to that end.

this does mean some people becoming more "poor", yes; I doubt Donald Trump would get to keep his personal golf course and hotel in a communist society. it would also mean my homeless mates not risking freezing to death each winter so, you know, there's that.

radicalgraffiti
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Apr 15 2013 05:05
notrueliberal wrote:
So is the goal of communism then to make everyone equally poor? Is that what you're saying, jonthom?

Personally I always thought the saying "communism where we're all equally poor" was just rhetoric without merit. Maybe I was wrong... Please correct me, if I'm misunderstanding your meaning...

fail troll is fail

notrueliberal
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Apr 15 2013 05:36

Why don't you give them room on your floor jonthom? As far as Trump goes I had no idea he had a golf course. What in the hell is that guy selling?

You know there is a guy in Canada that has a Hockey Ring in his basement? Pretty ridiculous eh?

Oh and radical

fail troll is fail fail...

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jonthom
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Apr 15 2013 06:51
notrueliberal wrote:
Why don't you give them room on your floor jonthom?

Funnily enough a mate of mine did just that a few days ago, and we go out each Friday giving out food and other stuff to some of the homeless people we know in my city as well as just hanging out with them for a bit. not perfect but it does seem to help a bit.

more to the point though, private acts of charity on a personal level, while admirable in themselves, can only do so much. capitalism, in any form, creates these problems; communism aims to abolish them.

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Apr 15 2013 07:46

First off, of course all production is social. A doctor can't work if a farmer doesn't grow his/her food, if someone else didn't make and upkeep the transportation system, build the hospital s/he works in, and the teachers hadn't taught him/her, etc, etc. All those people can't work without regular access to medical care. Not to mention that we all benefit from the collective wisdom and experience passed down from generations before.

Quote:
Scarcity is not do to "unproductive work" scarcity exists because the universe is finite. Men have unlimited wants and desires, and there are finite resources to get this done. Furthermore who gets to decide what is "unproductive work"? In addition to my mind eliminating dangerous work when possible should be a goal. A business if it's run by someone who isn't a moron, doesn't want it's workers hurt, because then they can't work. Furthermore, the business owner should want his workers to be happy. Because if they are happy they'll be more productive.

Couple things to say here. One, society, acting through directly democratic organs will decide on what's useful to produce. Two, you're still assuming that we want competitive, individual business. We don't. We want a democratically planned, co-operative economy.

Three, you're still missing basic points about capitalism. A business owner may want safe working conditions, but it's ultimately profit that determines the course of capitalist business ventures, not morality. I mean, Jesus, do you really need me to start listing figures on industrial accidents and sickness and disease at work? Then there's the fact that what the owner views as safe may not be what their workers view as safe. And then we're back to the conflict that's inherent to any capitalist workplace.

Quote:
I don't think I've ever met anyone who wants to work. I don't think I ever will, because lazing about doing nothing is always going to be more desirable than work.

This is another fundamental difference. The point of an anarchist society is to have the most social wealth with the littlest amount of work. An anarchist society will be judged precisely on our ability to drop down required working hours as much as possible.

There's also a larger argument that 'work' itself is a construct of capitalism and that once we abolish commodity production, productive labor will have an entirely different dynamic than what we experience under capitalism today.

But that's a much larger conversation. So instead I'm going to post some quotes from an intro to anarchism thing I wrote many years back that I think address a lot of what you've been saying on this thread. It'd be good to hear your thoughts.

notrueliberal
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Apr 15 2013 07:49

You know there are Utilitarians that argue that capitalism gives the best chance for everyone to make it out of the gutter. I think von Mises was one of them. At least he talks about it in Human Action.

While it's true that with capitalism there will always be a (key word approaching) comparatively poor class of people, I don't think that means that people will always be living in squaler.

Having been poor before (well comparatively to what I am today) I think that holds true if you are willing to work hard.

Incidentally, it appears to me that ya'll use the word "class" like I would use the word "caste" as in it seems that you guys mean class to be something you are born with, and something you can't lose.

Of course you had Nanner calling me a "class traitor" I suppose he means that since I was poor and don't desire to be poor for my entire life, that makes me evil.

I don't know it seems very... religious to me. Very much an us vs them mentally. No room for dissenters, a submit or die kinda of thing. I hope I'm wrong, because the whole point of me coming here, was based on there being an ability for peace between our philosophies.

What makes someone "proletariat" is it an accident of birth?

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Apr 15 2013 07:49

Libertarian socialists believe that every individual has the ability to make every decision that affects his or her life. However, we also recognize that many decisions are of a social nature. As such, all that are affected by a particular decision should have an equal say in the outcome. Related, libertarian socialists realize the economy is objectively social. In other words, one couldn’t do his or her job effectively if millions of others didn’t do their job effectively as well. For example, if sanitation workers didn’t clear the streets of trash, disease would spread so quickly that doctors would be too overwhelmed to handle the amount of patients who need care. Likewise, both doctors and sanitation workers need folks to grow their food, build their houses, make their clothing, and keep society’s transportation systems in working order. Those people, in turn, need health care and trash removal. Moreover, in our jobs, we all use products, inventions, and ideas inherited from previous generations. Knowledge itself is social, as it is built up and passed on from person to person and generation to generation.

Because the economy is objectively social, anyone who claims to “own” the fruits of the economy (i.e. a corporation or an individual capitalist) is effectively stealing from the workers who created such wealth in the first place. Instead of an economy driven by profit and greed, an ethical and rational economic system would be based on fulfilling human need (including the needs of luxury, rest, and relaxation) with the least amount of effort. In this socialist economy all individuals would engage in socially productive labor and all jobs would be recognized as equally valued and equally important.

Libertarian socialists believe that for socialism to truly thrive we must establish democratic control of every aspect of the economy. Workers must begin by democratically controlling their immediate workplace. Instead of managers appointed by profit-driven corporate bosses or government bureaucrats, workers must exercise self-management. Decisions concerning everything from what is produced to how it is produced can be made in regular meetings in which every worker has a vote. In short, workers will exercise worker control.

On a practical level, libertarian socialists, after expropriating the owning class and all its property, would seek to abolish all unproductive toil. This means that all positions that do not actually create wealth (managers, landlords, corporate executives, bankers, police officers, politicians, bureaucrats, etc.) and sites of unnecessary labor (outbound call centers, telemarketing agencies, the entire advertising industry, real estate agencies, banks, car dealerships, corporate offices, etc.) would be eliminated. All individuals could then gravitate toward the work they find most rewarding. Likewise, cooperation is always far more productive than competition. Engaging in productive labor within a democratic environment would encourage much greater efficiency. The stress, both individual and social, associated with the capitalist work regime would disappear. Moreover, with the profit motive removed, technology could be applied to the larger social good. Instead of advances in technology being one more excuse to cut jobs, it would help decrease the workload for everyone. Plus, with all engaged in productive work and the parasitic capitalist class abolished, the amount of work required from each member of society to would be drastically reduced. If, after all of this, ‘undesirable’ work still existed, it could be democratically divided between all able bodies.

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Chilli Sauce
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Apr 15 2013 07:55
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Of course you had Nanner calling me a "class traitor" I suppose he means that since I was poor and don't desire to be poor for my entire life, that makes me evil.

No. Communists are the ones leading the fight against poverty. It's just that we recognise that we it's only through collective effort that we break down the system that creates poverty in the first place.

You're a class traitor if you actively act against the interests of your class. By ideologically defending capitalism and seeking to put your personal enrichment above the interests of your class, you're a class traitor.

Quote:
Very much an us vs them mentally.

It is. It's a structural us verses them created by the very organisation of capitalist society.

Quote:
What makes someone "proletariat" is it an accident of birth?

No, it's their relationship to the means of production.

Read this:

http://libcom.org/library/class-class-struggle-introduction-draft

Seriously.

notrueliberal
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Apr 15 2013 08:06

"First off, of course all production is social. A doctor can't work if a farmer doesn't grow his/her food, if someone else didn't make and upkeep the transportation system, build the hospital s/he works in, and the teachers hadn't taught him/her, etc, etc. All those people can't work without regular access to medical care. Not to mention that we all benefit from the collective wisdom and experience passed down from generations before"

Well the begining of this is what I call the division of labour, and as for standing on the shoulders of giants, that is very true. Certainly neither of our philosophies would exist without the giants in our past.

"Couple things to say here. One, society, acting through directly democratic organs will decide on what's useful to produce. Two, you're still assuming that we want competitive, individual business. We don't. We want a democratically planned, co-operative economy."

Like I've said before I don't see how democracy isn't coercive, I certainly don't want to live in a democracy. But I'm not going to stop you from doing so. We've all born witness to the failures of the planned economies of the past, how is your planned economy going to be different?

"but it's ultimately profit that determines the course of capitalist business ventures, not morality" What is morality? To my mind morality is subjective. And this seems to hold true if we examine the various ethical codes taught by the religions, philosophers, and cultures around the world. I don't think it would be possible to have a single morality world wide. It may be possible in a smaller community however. Especially if having a certian ethical code were a requirement for entry into said community.

"This is another fundamental difference. The point of an anarchist society is to have the most social wealth with the littlest amount of work. An anarchist society will be judged precisely on our ability to drop down required working hours as much as possible."

There was a video on the front of an AnCap blog I enjoy reading that was pointing out that in the US the 40 hour work week was still standard, while in France they work something like 30 hours while having the same level of stuff we do. The idea being that work as a good thing was a Puritan concept, and since the French don't have that in their culture they've dispensed with the longer work week.

"productive labor will have an entirely different dynamic than what we experience under capitalism today."
Definetely interested in hearing alternatives. Like I said laying on a beach surronded by naked ladies sounds opitmal to me! smile

"But that's a much larger conversation. So instead I'm going to post some quotes from an intro to anarchism thing I wrote many years back that I think address a lot of what you've been saying on this thread. It'd be good to hear your thoughts. "

Well sounds good lets do it!

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jonthom
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Apr 15 2013 08:16
notrueliberalI wrote:
I hope I'm wrong, because the whole point of me coming here, was based on there being an ability for peace between our philosophies.

I think this brings us full circle.

Anarchism is, by definition, anti-capitalist. "AnCap", by definition, is pro-capitalist. I don't really see any possibility for "peace between our philosophies".

More to the point though, I don't know what that would even mean, and have even less idea what benefit there would be for it. As pointed out earlier in this thread, anarchists involve themselves in all sorts of practical activity beyond philosophising and debating online (not that there's anything wrong with these things in themselves, of course). Workers struggles, environmental campaigns, prisoner solidarity, benefit claimant organising, anti-austerity actions and a host of others. Take a look at the websites for AFed and SolFed for an idea of some of what anarchists in the UK get up to.

For the life of me I can't see what benefit there would be for anarchists to try and "make peace" with AnCaps, nor where there would be much common ground for practical activity. Discussing philosophy and models of a hypothetical future society are somewhat interesting, certainly, but there are limits to how either interesting or useful this can be.

notrueliberal
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Apr 15 2013 08:43

"For the life of me I can't see what benefit there would be for anarchists to try and "make peace" with AnCaps, nor where there would be much common ground for practical activity. Discussing philosophy and models of a hypothetical future society are somewhat interesting, certainly, but there are limits to how either interesting or useful this can be. "

Well the idea would be that we don't end up killing eachother. That seems fairly useful to me as I don't want to die, and I don't have any desire to kill anyone.

I don't know not dieing seems like a beneficial thing. I could be wrong.

In the mean time, since violence isn't on the horizon between us, since both our movements have bigger fish to fry, I'm happy to talk about ideas.

Knowledge is sacred, and the pursuit of knowledge is sacred.