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    Anarchy and Discussion on Societies without Governments (Read the OP)
    • This is not a debate over the definition of anarchism, it's a discussion on anarchism as it is already defined academically: in other words this is to be a discussion on non-hierarchical political structures, not a discussion of whether or not anarchy is the political structure of chaos, mob rule, or any definition that is not academically based.

      Any further posts relating to a non-academic definition of anarchism will be deleted.


      Red Dingo wrote:

      gerudoyoshi wrote:

      mine:
      - abolish the government.
      So...hand power to the psychotic ape with the biggest stick then.
      no; hand power to the people.

      Please Understand wrote:

      You will find that "reasonable thoughts" is subjective. So gvt is a requirement in any case. Someone needs to define what "reasonable thoughts" means to begin with.
      the government defining which thoughts are reasonable and which aren't sounds straight up Orwellian. You really stand by that? I'd rather nobody tell me how to think.

      Mozly Alice wrote:

      Meh the history of civilization is the history of warlords.
      My biggest problem with anarchism is that it just takes power away from the people who can keep corporations in check (not that they have done much of that in recent decades)
      on the contrary, anarchism involves taking power away from governments and corporations and handing it back to the people. In an anarchist society there won't be any need to keep corporations in check because there won't be any corporations; the laborers would own the means of production.

      pronouns: it/its or squi/squir
      ask me about my LGBTA+ and nonbinary Discord servers.

      The post was edited 2 times, last by Viajero de la Galaxia ().

    • gerudoyoshi wrote:

      on the contrary, anarchism involves taking power away from governments and corporations and handing it back to the people. In an anarchist society there won't be any need to keep corporations in check because there won't be any corporations; the laborers would own the means of production.
      This has not been how any of the real-world anarchies ended up running. They usually quickly evolved either into states of competing warlords or into competing crime cartels. Workers usually ended up with far less control over the means of production than they have when governments exist.
    • @Auamentus

      Aquamentus wrote:

      So you just gonna ignore me after taking a jab? That is either some serious passive aggressive crap right there or a simple oversight friend.
      We are not friends, however I overlooked your reply. But to answer your question: yes, you helped normalize a system of bullshitting instead of thoughtful dialogue, and now someone like Ben Shapiro is seen as a master debater. If you don't like the truth of it, you could always dedicate yourself to reforming the system of High School debate so that it censures and penalizes fast-talking bullshitters.


      @URNOTLIKEME

      urnotlikeme wrote:

      I view history as a progression of humans grappling to understand with the gravity of their self-awareness and all the responsibility that comes with it. You'd be a fool to expect humans to behave in the beginning without animal instincts, considering that's from where we evolved. However, the moment humans gained self-awareness, things changed. Yes, humans have abused their self-awareness and have done awful things. But to also refute your point about history, think about how many atrocities were done in the name of government? How many wars between sovereign governments have been waged? And how many lives, innocent or not, were claimed by those very wars?

      It's not that the unmanageable need to be contained. That's a very narcissistic argument that does not take into context the millenia of oppression upon the poor, the poor who are last to be educated, the last ones to receive their paychecks, but the first ones to die in war. Poverty causes ignorance. And we support a government that enforces and needs both poverty and ignorance.
      Okay, ignoring the fact people commit atrocities regardless of whether not they have a government, how can an anarchy set up the infrastructure to help educate the masses and organize the production and distribution of food, medicine, and shelter. How does an anarchy guard against malicious agents both foreign and domestic?

      Humans tend to be self destructive pieces of shit, so it only follows that an organization comprised of them risks being run by self destructive pieces of shit. But it's that same organization that built the roads and aqueducts that sustain your standard of living enough that you can engage in this discussion.


      @Gerudoyoshi

      gerudoyoshi wrote:

      no; hand power to the people.
      What do you mean by this nebulous term "the people"? Does that extend to those "very fine people" marching with Tikki Torches in Charlottesville? Or how about "the people" that just voted to punish women for miscarrying. Or what about the people who choose to stand by and do nothing as all of this shit goes down? Do you also mean those "people"? I'm curious when I see this phrase. "The people"...
    • Red Dingo wrote:

      What do you mean by this nebulous term "the people"? Does that extend to those "very fine people" marching with Tikki Torches in Charlottesville? Or how about "the people" that just voted to punish women for miscarrying. Or what about the people who choose to stand by and do nothing as all of this shit goes down? Do you also mean those "people"? I'm curious when I see this phrase. "The people"...
      Vis-à-vis the paradox of tolerance, anarchism precludes such (and I deign to call them such) people. There's a lot that goes into realizing and maintaining horizontal structures but pacifism isn't necessarily one of those things.
    • Red Dingo wrote:

      Humans tend to be self destructive pieces of shit, so it only follows that an organization comprised of them risks being run by self destructive pieces of shit.
      Humans tend to look after themselves, and they're willing to burn the world to make that happen. Government just makes it much easier to do so. Hitler couldn't slaughter 10 million+ without the help of his government. Stalin coudn't execute 40 million+ without the help of his government. King Richard the Lionheart and Salah-ahdin couldn't wage their little crusade without the backing of gigantic religious organizations.

      And yet (dramatization), this happened without government.

      It wasn't an institution that built the roads, aqueducts, and all the goodies in our society, it was people. Not a government. Not money. Money doesn't just sprout up a skyscraper, people getting off their ass to go to work build a skyscraper. All of our goods and services come from a desire to want something and someone who can provide it. Our ancestors have supported themselves plenty fine up to this point without a strict hierarchy.

      Don't tell me you need a government to do a favor for a friend. While I am not totally an anarchist, I have read some of Proudhon's works and have found some merit in his arguments. And while I am not totally for a completely governmentless society (yet), I do think we need to move away from worshiping big institutions and relying on big government to come down and solve our problems, and we need to look at smaller, more autonomous governments. After all, if history has shown me anything, big governments like kingdoms and empires screw the little guy.

      Red Dingo wrote:

      how can an anarchy set up the infrastructure to help educate the masses and organize the production and distribution of food, medicine, and shelter.
      Through nothing more than a simple social contract between people. The economy works much better when people are in charge of their own lives. Universal education might be nice, but if you look at the totalitarian example, you can just see how a centrally-planned education can go wrong.
    • @URNOTLIKEME

      urnotlikeme wrote:

      It wasn't an institution that built the roads, aqueducts, and all the goodies in our society, it was people. Not a government. Not money. Money doesn't just sprout up a skyscraper, people getting off their ass to go to work build a skyscraper. All of our goods and services come from a desire to want something and someone who can provide it. Our ancestors have supported themselves plenty fine up to this point without a strict hierarchy.

      Don't tell me you need a government to do a favor for a friend. While I am not totally an anarchist, I have read some of Proudhon's works and have found some merit in his arguments. And while I am not totally for a completely governmentless society (yet), I do think we need to move away from worshiping big institutions and relying on big government to come down and solve our problems, and we need to look at smaller, more autonomous governments. After all, if history has shown me anything, big governments like kingdoms and empires screw the little guy.
      *Sigh* I don't suppose someone else can explain why confederacies fail or the necessity of logistics? Small societies usually end up crushed by bigger ones, that's why they keep popping up throughout history.

      Don't get me wrong, bigger institutions fail for their own reasons but they also tend to progress in terms of civilization and technology. At best, you're championing the equivalent of pissing in the wind. At worse: atavism.

      urnotlikeme wrote:

      Through nothing more than a simple social contract between people. The economy works much better when people are in charge of their own lives. Universal education might be nice, but if you look at the totalitarian example, you can just see how a centrally-planned education can go wrong.
      Nothing more than the good word of psychotic apes? No. Social contract works as a foundation for ethical principals: the code of conduct on which laws are based. But it is ultimately impotent without a way of creating consequences against violators.


      @Aquamentus

      Aquamentus wrote:

      You certainly have bad faith in alot of us and have met multiple members with sheer anatognizism and rudeness through insufferable posts in my time here on ZU.
      Thank you.

      Aquamentus wrote:

      Your bad faith in me and severe accusation is certainly disheartening. To give you the most credit, perhaps my original post may have seem that the purpose of these extracurricular programs are solely to teach students to fast talk bullshit but it certainly isn't.
      I'm not saying you intended to do it, just that you're complicit in a system that seems to enable it.
    • Mozly Alice wrote:

      Kerest wrote:

      War with Iran, the trade war with China, the ongoing accusations of meddling against Russia...

      Is anyone else getting a "Cold War 2" vibe from these actions?
      I think the United States should be declared a Rogue State. It's clearly a threat to world peace.
      I think the actual Rogue States would take offense to that.

      I completely forgot he said this. With the sheer tsunami of bulls%^& he spews on a secondly basis, it's hard to keep track of the various spurious claims.
    • Please Understand, Kerest, Red Dingo
      Display Spoiler

      Please Understand wrote:

      Well, thought police is Orwellian, but actual police isn't. There needs to be some law and order for society to function.
      I disagree. I think police are fascist pigs and law is coercion and that neither one is necessary for society to function.

      Kerest wrote:

      This has not been how any of the real-world anarchies ended up running. They usually quickly evolved either into states of competing warlords or into competing crime cartels. Workers usually ended up with far less control over the means of production than they have when governments exist.
      humans have been around for 200,000 years or so. States weren't really a thing until maybe Sumer, only 6,000 years ago. For most of human history we've been just fine without states. If you think humans don't know how to work together and survive without a government coercing them and committing violence against them, you should think a little harder.

      also, it is the interference of states that prevents proper anarchist states from being able to form and stay stable. What is a "crime cartel" in a civilization that doesn't have laws, money, or leaders? What is a "warlord" when there are no wars, no soldiers, no territories? There are enough resources in this world to provide for us all; if we freely shared them all there would be no need for crime or war. Everyone would have the resources they need. Why fight when you already have plenty?

      Red Dingo wrote:

      Okay, ignoring the fact people commit atrocities regardless of whether not they have a government, how can an anarchy set up the infrastructure to help educate the masses and organize the production and distribution of food, medicine, and shelter. How does an anarchy guard against malicious agents both foreign and domestic?
      Humans tend to be self destructive pieces of shit, so it only follows that an organization comprised of them risks being run by self destructive pieces of shit. But it's that same organization that built the roads and aqueducts that sustain your standard of living enough that you can engage in this discussion.
      what's to prevent an anarchist society from setting up infrastructure and guarding against threats? We don't need a state to do either of those things. A state is just people; anything a state can do, people can do without a state.
      What do you mean by this nebulous term "the people"? Does that extend to those "very fine people" marching with Tikki Torches in Charlottesville? Or how about "the people" that just voted to punish women for miscarrying. Or what about the people who choose to stand by and do nothing as all of this shit goes down? Do you also mean those "people"? I'm curious when I see this phrase. "The people"...
      in an anarchist society, all people have equal standing and an equal share of power in their society. Fascists marching in Charlottesville? Misogynist anti-choicers? Those who are content to benefit from their own privilege and remain indifferent to the downtrodden?

      these people are the opposition, obstacles to be removed before the anarchist society can exist to begin with. And in a society where all hold equal power, those who would try to use their power against another will find an equal force turned against them. There will be no footholds for such obstacles to rise again. Again, it is the state that allows these things to exist to begin with. Without institutional power enforced by states, there would be no way for a majority of power to be held by a minority of people.

      pronouns: it/its or squi/squir
      ask me about my LGBTA+ and nonbinary Discord servers.

      The post was edited 3 times, last by gerudoyoshi ().

    • gerudoyoshi wrote:

      Kerest wrote:

      This has not been how any of the real-world anarchies ended up running. They usually quickly evolved either into states of competing warlords or into competing crime cartels. Workers usually ended up with far less control over the means of production than they have when governments exist.
      humans have been around for 200,000 years or so. States weren't really a thing until maybe Sumer, only 6,000 years ago. For most of human history we've been just fine without states. If you think humans don't know how to work together and survive without a government coercing them and committing violence against them, you should think a little harder.
      also, it is the interference of states that prevents proper anarchist states from being able to form and stay stable. What is a "crime cartel" in a civilization that doesn't have laws, money, or leaders? What is a "warlord" when there are no wars, no soldiers, no territories? There are enough resources in this world to provide for us all; if we freely shared them all there would be no need for crime or war. Everyone would have the resources they need. Why fight when you already have plenty?
      Try closer to 2+ million for how long humans have been around. And prior to creation of states like Sumer, age of death was typically something in the late 20s; there's a good reason why humans never evolved a natural fertility span of longer than 40 years. We simply never needed it before.

      And note that, even with the existence of those states, humans only achieved the modern era of world peace as a result of the Cold War. It took the literal threat of total nuclear annihilation of the entire fucking planet before we finally decided we could live with each other. There are still people alive who predate that period, and there are plenty of people alive today who long for the old days of everlasting warfare that made up human existence prior to nuclear proliferation.

      70 years is not enough time to establish an inherently-peaceful nature.

      Finally, you want to know what modern anarchies have looked like? Take a good look at the recent history of Somilia, Afghanistan, Iraq, and similar nations. Pull up the news stories about all of the violence, rioting, and looting that happened in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. If you want to take a good look at anarchy, take a good look first at what's required to put it in place and what people do when that happens. That is what you are asking for. Not some fairy tale idea that we'll suddenly get along just because there's no government; we've got two million years of evolution telling us that murdering each other is the norm and required the threat of total extinction of the entire planet to finally make real efforts at peace.

      And, even without humans in the picture, those resources are not evenly distributed across the planet. You want to share them? You need organized methods of exchanging resources.

      Finally, what about the people who enjoy power? Who enjoy having power over others? And what about the sociopaths and psychopaths? What methods does an anarchy have for controlling and mitigating what those three personality types can do in a society? The U.S. government was an attempt to design with them in mind and to force them to work for the people, and you see how it's turning out; what better outcome could a government style designed without that in mind manage?

      The problem with your last question is that it has many answers: "I'm bored." "I don't like them." "I have enough, but I want more." "I simply enjoy fighting." And so on. Which, incidentally, are the reasons behind a large percentage of wars that actually happened. And the reasons behind why warlords and crime cartels rise to power.

      And, a final question: In a nation without laws, what is there to stop me from enslaving my neighbors and murdering anyone who tries to free them out of simple sadistic enjoyment? And that's before we even get to the questions that are nightmarish to even contemplate, yet must be contemplated in any society.


      urnotlikeme wrote:

      To say that people are stupid without government is a direct slap in the face to all indigenous people who do currently live without strict governments, let alone law enforcement. You can read up on the Bajau people and perhaps enlighten yourself instead of giving me a "I'm already right because history."
      The Bajau are a people with a government. Please make certain your facts are correct before telling people to enlighten themselves.

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Kerest: A bit more I thought of while trying to sleep. ().

    • The facts here are up to interpretation. Much of their relationships are implied in practice. Yes there is a hierarchy. Yes there is a social order. So yes, you can call this a government technically. However, the anarchic element here is that their relationships have been developed through generations upon generations of cultivating trust and goodwill between family members, instead of a centrally formed government with a piece of paper that tells everybody what to do and what not to do. The difference between their organization is that much of proprietorship is based upon personal relationships with one another, and any hierarchy comes from agreement in the community. Hence why that section was labeled "political organization" and not "government". If you want to call it "government", fine, but I'd also argue that you're stretching the definition a bit, and we can spend all day arguing semantics. Proudhon was not an idiot when he wrote his first thesis on anarchism and understood that people would make relationships with each other and organize naturally. The key difference between an anarchic organization and our current governments is that all participation is voluntary.

      Our government has been built on exploitation and the alienation of our fellow human beings from each other. As for your examples of complete anarchy, way to pick all examples that are caused by the inequities and the tyranny of big government. Katrina was a shitshow because government could not respond in time (and also, the American government and economy have bred people think every human for itself), Afghanistan had plenty of well running small societies with tribal style leadership until they were invaded how many times in the past thirty years? Iraq... I don't even want to go into how wrong everything went with Iraq and how the US caused all the anarchy there. You picked examples of societies that have completely depended on a centralized institution for its very survival, where people are raised to depend on that very institution. Yeah no shit when you suddenly cut their source of organization out suddenly, people are going to go nuts. Especially when your government has been directly responsible for keeping your own people, especially the poor, ignorant. Unless you can reasonably argue to me that each person wants to be poor and ignorant.


      The earliest homo sapiens fossil on record is about 160,000 years old btw. And the point wasn't that they lived long or short. The point is they made it long enough to get to where we are now, and the fact that I am here typing this is testament to that. And the sudden lifespan didn't suddenly increase with the invention of government. I refute that government is absolutely necessary for society to function. Plenty of communities have survived countless generations until today even without a "governing body" to tell people what to do.

      The post was edited 4 times, last by urnotlikeme ().

    • gerudoyoshi wrote:

      I disagree. I think police are fascist pigs and law is coercion and that neither one is necessary for society to function.
      If we didn't have any law and order, then you would be worried about your life every single moment.

      In fact, chances are both of us would be 6ft under at this point. It would be survival of the fittest out there.
      "Can't post that on a Christian forum."
    • urnotlikeme wrote:

      The facts here are up to interpretation. Much of their relationships are implied in practice. Yes there is a hierarchy. Yes there is a social order. So yes, you can call this a government technically. However, the anarchic element here is that their relationships have been developed through generations upon generations of cultivating trust and goodwill between family members, instead of a centrally formed government with a piece of paper that tells everybody what to do and what not to do. The difference between their organization is that much of proprietorship is based upon personal relationships with one another, and any hierarchy comes from agreement in the community. Hence why that section was labeled "political organization" and not "government". If you want to call it "government", fine, but I'd also argue that you're stretching the definition a bit, and we can spend all day arguing semantics. Proudhon was not an idiot when he wrote his first thesis on anarchism and understood that people would make relationships with each other and organize naturally. The key difference between an anarchic organization and our current governments is that all participation is voluntary.
      Within the link I provided, it specifically says this at the end of the bit about political organization:

      "The position of more powerful regional leaders was legitimized through their investiture with titles. Thus the sultan incorporated local communities into the larger polity by appointing proven local leaders to act in his name as representatives of the state. In return for tribute and political fealty, titleholders were granted rights to conduct and regulate trade, levy taxes, maintain order, and administer the law. Today regional leaders operate largely in the context of electoral politics or through state appointment and serve generally as links between community leaders and the national administrative structure in any of the three countries involved."

      Any organization that can regulate trade, levy taxes, maintain order, and administer the law is by definition a government. This is not stretching any defintion.


      urnotlikeme wrote:

      Our government has been built on exploitation and the alienation of our fellow human beings from each other. As for your examples of complete anarchy, way to pick all examples that are caused by the inequities and the tyranny of big government. Katrina was a shitshow because government could not respond in time (and also, the American government and economy have bred people think every human for itself), Afghanistan had plenty of well running small societies with tribal style leadership until they were invaded how many times in the past thirty years? Iraq... I don't even want to go into how wrong everything went with Iraq and how the US caused all the anarchy there. You picked examples of societies that have completely depended on a centralized institution for its very survival, where people are raised to depend on that very institution. Yeah no shit when you suddenly cut their source of organization out suddenly, people are going to go nuts. Especially when your government has been directly responsible for keeping your own people, especially the poor, ignorant. Unless you can reasonably argue to me that each person wants to be poor and ignorant.
      And what do you think will happen if we transition to anarchy in the real world? Most people in every nation are completely dependent upon centralized institution for their very survival, and nearly every civilization intentionally raises them to depend on that very institution. Most people don't have the skills to survive without modern civilization, period. The few who do tend to be the scary people who will install dictatorships during the chaos.

      People don't want to be poor and ignorant, but they'll pick it over dying. That's why civilization exists to begin with.


      urnotlikeme wrote:

      The earliest homo sapiens fossil on record is about 160,000 years old btw. And the point wasn't that they lived long or short. The point is they made it long enough to get to where we are now, and the fact that I am here typing this is testament to that. And the sudden lifespan didn't suddenly increase with the invention of government. I refute that government is absolutely necessary for society to function. Plenty of communities have survived countless generations until today even without a "governing body" to tell people what to do.
      Try 315,000 years. And Homo sapiens is not the only part of humanity; you're ignoring every other species to exist, including a number that contributed to the genetic make-up of the subspecies that currently dominates the planet.

      And however much you want to refute it, there is the fact that ancient civilization allowed an age jump from sometime in the 40s to the mid-90s for some individuals. Government has also been instrumental in the utilization of farmland maintenance techniques that keep modern food production possible, the spread of vaccines that killed off disease and pushed the average age of death upward by decades, the enshrinement of civil rights into law and end of legal slavery, and a number of other beneficial practices. Including the widespread use of communication methods that allow you to argue for a lack of government.

      And while you mention a lack of governing body, you have yet to cite a single group. Even the example you did provide can be shown to have governing bodies and take part in the politics of nations. Which makes me ask this: Of those groups, how many are actually their own people, and how many take part in the governing decisions made by a nation that has political authority over their land? I bet if we limit it to the peoples who do not take part in government in some manner, you won't be able to cite a single example.

      Saying "well, this group doesn't have a governing body" means nothing if the governing body is external and they take part in the political process it has.

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Kerest ().

    • Lucretia wrote:

      that's only that way post colonisation

      indigenous people's got along pretty well within their clan group without cops, ya dont know it cos yall are ignorant of how much yall fucked indigenous cultures
      Indigenous cultures like the Iroquois prospered with their own form of government. They had their own forms of law enforcement as well. I’m very surprised I have to explain this to you of all people.
    • So, with these new abortion laws in states like Georgia and Alabama, it's entirely possible for situations where a female rape victim and/or her doctor to be imprisoned longer for participating in an abortion than the rapist would be imprisoned.

      It's amazing how some Americans will accept tyrannical, callous law so long as it originates from white Christians. Their outrage only exists when dark skinned foreigners are involved.

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    • Lucretia wrote:

      that's only that way post colonisation

      indigenous people's got along pretty well within their clan group without cops, ya dont know it cos yall are ignorant of how much yall fucked indigenous cultures
      That's a pretty broad scope to paint across several continents of indigenous people? I'm sure you're not implying they all lived in peaceful lala land within their tribe just because there wasn't cops.