Sunday, August 07, 2022 23:12

Open letter to the Board (2)

Many people think of chaos when they hear the word “anarchy”. Therefore, they assume that an anarchist person is inclined to disorder and violence. I will try to describe my own ideas about the current power system and the so much hated and blamed anarchy system, and I will use for demonstration two imaginary islands. The first will be called Authority, and we assume that it is led by a government, military or other management system that is organized and institutionalized, and on the second we will call Anarchy, and we assume that it is not driven by any law, rule, or class institution. Thus:

  • Everyone assumes that anarchy means “every man for himself”, or “survival of the fittest” or “absence of any cooperation or social organization”. It assumes that everyone must be self-sufficient, not needing anyone else. This belief is born from the false presumption that a government is necessary for any social organization to take place. Whether it is part of a republic, a kingdom, a democracy or a dictatorship, a ruling class issues rules called “laws”, and punishes those who do not comply. In my opinion, this is NOT called “cooperation”, but “domination”. It means a group that IMPOSES its will to another group. The authority can be used to force people into organized patterns, but that does not mean that people cannot organize their activities without being forced. The most productive and useful examples of organization that we observe today are anarchist in their nature. Nobody was forced to build a market, nobody was compelled or forced to sell things in it, and in the complex process that includes growing food, transportation, displaying and selling it, all participate voluntarily, not because they were forced by the ruling class. We, as buyers, we are not forced by anyone to choose one market, nor on what we spend money in that market. This purely voluntary arrangement allows an extremely complex organized cooperation, without anyone being forced to participate. In contrast, under a government, a small group of people come up with an idea and forces all others to participate in it and to support it through taxes. In the authoritative version of a marketplace, the ruling class dictates to the people what to produce and how much, the prices to ask, and indirectly impose buyers what they can buy and how much to pay. All those who do not obey the fully centralized system are punished one way or another. Thus:
  1. Authority – without cooperation (domination); with organization (but forced)
  2. Anarchy – with organization and cooperation (both voluntary)
  • Another misconception is that if there wasn’t a ruling class or a government, people would have no means to defend themselves against villains or foreign invaders. I believe that this idea is wrong. The government version of protection is hypocritical by nature. Governments will use the institutions of law enforcement to catch and punish some of villains. But every ruling class receives its operations funding through fees and taxes, demanding money from those it protects, and punishing those who do not pay. Oddly, each authoritarian class insists that it is necessary to control and force to extort money from people in this way, just to be able to protect them from the villains who could control them and force them to extort money! Ironic, is not it? :) However, if there isn’t a government, people do not lose their right to defend themselves with all means against violence or against those who want to take what they have. Everyone has the right to defend themselves. And has the right to organize and cooperate with others to exercise that right. Organizing a mutual defense ordinance that requires no government or authority. Nobody wants to be attacked or their stuff stolen, and everyone wants to feel safe. Whether they protect themselves each person individually or as an organized group committed to defend, everything is done voluntarily.
  1. Authority – forcing laws and levy taxes for their implementation, in order to punish evildoers (but punishes citizens who do not obey to mandatory payment of fees to protect them)
  2. Anarchy – each individual decides if defending individualy or pay an organized group to do it for them.
  • Those who insist that a government is necessary, often claim that unless there was a government, small groups and gangs would born in order to plunder and enslave people. Organized criminal groups exist ALONGSIDE with the government, and many people do not understand the extremely complex dynamics of funding of organized crime groups by the government, while allegedly fighting them. Black markets finance organized crime and money permit them to buy government protection. In an anarchist environment where there are fewer ways to get illicit money, it is unlikely that this will happen. A criminal gang recognized as such has much less power than a band whose aggression is seen as legitimate, and this is the band that we call “government” – when banditry is called “law enforcement”, when theft is called “taxation “and self-defense is called “crime” and “terrorism”. Imagine a small gang trying to do what a government does, without the aura of authority of the government, and how well armed population would respond to this. The gang would quickly and dramatically fail.
  • Another concern that people have when they take into consideration the idea of ​​a society without a state is that some people are really wicked psychopaths. The concern is that these people will be free to do whatever they want and no one would stop them. But this concern is based, again, on a basic misunderstanding of human nature. Wherever we have a leading governmental class, we also have thieves, psychopaths and terrorists that are not stopped by the police. In some cases they are stopped by a police force or decide not to commit a crime for fear of what the police could do, but what makes this deterrent function is not legislation or official badges, but the mere threat of physical injury of the sociopath. It makes no difference whether the threat comes from the police, another citizen or another criminal. A sociopath does not care about laws or social rules, he/she only cares about avoiding pain and injuries to himself/herself. And this is true also when a class of government leadership is lacking. Again, ironically, people hope that the government will protect them, the same government that has the right to tax the people and creates a band so big and strong that ordinary people can’t cope with (see miners’ strikes , unauthorized street demonstrations, etc.). And doing a simple calculation, the government collects more money in taxes to ensure protection than any band could ever hope to cash. So who’s the real band, after all?
  1. Authority – criminals are fought with laws and institutions authorized to enforce those laws (police, etc.)
  2. Anarchy – criminals are fought by the very victims who have the right to defend themselves.
  • Another objection to the idea of ​​a society without a state is that if there wasn’t a legal group to tell everyone else how to behave, society would behave like stupid animals, irresponsible, violent. This statement implies two things: either we, ordinary people, have no idea about good and evil until, and only until the politicians tell us what they are and how they are eaten, or that the wish to co-exist peacefully exists only because politicians have imposed it. It is particularly strange to make this statement in a society where politicians are voted to power. If people themselves do not have a moral code and conscience, and they are only stupid and violent animals, then why almost everyone wants the chosen government to maintain peace and defend the innocent? Would a population of vicious, heartless, evil people, try to elect folks to keep bad people in line? Obviously not. Goodness and desire for peace and order comes from us, not from people doing laws that we put in the chair. The same is true for everything the government does: if people are so selfish and goggle that they can not organize voluntarily and can not raise money for whatever they consider important, how can trust be given to the same people, to decide who comes to power? Moral? People can not be trusted to run their own lives, but they can be trusted to choose someone to lead their lives. Government is not actually a civilizing influence, on the contrary. People who would never personally rob their neighbors, do it consistently through the government, under the name of “taxes”. People who would never dream of controlling every tiny detail of their neighbors lives think it is perfectly normal to vote for politicians who do it in their place. Thus, the government encourages people to plunder and control the lives of others, this time without any risk. And this is how the government, instead of reviewing the imperfections of our nature, drastically amplifies greed, irresponsibility and our wickedness against other beings, giving us the legally acceptable and free from risk means of interfering with the lives and choices of those around us. In the absence of a ruling class, people would lose the ability to interfere in other people’s lives and would not have law enforcement institutions that can avoid responsibility for misdeeds by the simple motto of “follow orders and laws.” Throughout history, many more thefts, attacks, oppression and even murders were committed by those acting on behalf of the so-called authority than anyone else. Do people alone would burn people at the stake for their beliefs? Would start wars? Would use nuclear weapons? Even people normally “good”, when they believe in the government, they will do things that they would know are wrong if they would do them for themselves. “Wrong” is “correct” when called taxation, regulation or… war. Anarchists know better. They know that society will never be perfect, but they know much better that the society would be a better place if the misdeeds would be done only the people truly evil, instead of the folks who believe that violence and bullying is OK when it called legislation. One question remains: Did the thousands of laws, regulations and taxes placed on your shoulders by the government, make you a better person than you were in your nature? Did they make you more productive or responsive to the others?
  • Most people today think that we need a form of government because they wrongly think that obedience to authority makes us more civilized, more moral or pacifists. In reality, the result has always been the opposite. Everyone knows that governments may be corrupt, inefficient, unfair, counterproductive and even tyrannical. But most people think that the way to fix things is to bring honest people in power. People have lost centuries trying to create a good society using different classes of leadership, legislative structures, different methods of choosing leaders, and so on. But any governmental structure, however good, has resulted in liberty and prosperity for some, and oppression, violence and poverty for others. What would happen if instead of being concerned with how the throne will look and who should sit on it, we preoccupied with the idea of ​​self-ownership? Conceptually, anarchism says no one is your master, and no one is your slave. And this is, in my opinion, the first step in designing a really perfect society. And I take full responsibility for each letter written above.

As a conclusion, I would like to talk specifically about Romania. We are leaders (if not first) as a country in terms of number of taxes. If we take only the concept that taxes are required only to make society better, richer and safer, we should be most heavenly realm on Earth, is not it? Instead, you’re going to get better in hospitals, and you get out with your feet first, although you have been giving bribes and you have paid a lifetime of health insurance (and maybe you have never needed to benefit from the money that you paid them every month). You’re going to ask for justice when you are assaulted, stolen, cheated or discriminated against, and you’re treated like a criminal, and the case itself is rarely resolved. You’re going to file a statement, ask for a document, and you’re treated at the counter as if you are a slave not worth anything, although you’re paying officials and the services they provide. You want for everything bad to be changed by those who you’ve chosen exactly for this purpose, and you’re beaten and arrested if you dare to demonstrate in the streets.

Taken one by one, any services for which you are asked to pay is more than pathetic, ineffective or non-existent. And then, one last question: why do we need a ruling class made with only one purpose: to receive without giving anything in return?!



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