Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Social Anarchist Assault on Ancapistan

Alex, thanks again for your criticism titled Fallacious Rejection of Anarchism.

First of all, I consistently describe myself as a "poor writer," which means that my writing often misrepresents by beliefs. For instance, I mistyped yesterday's response and it contained grammatical errors, and, as you all know, some misrepresentations. In addition, I forgot to edit, revise, and clarify my work. Therefore I will clarify my claims that I pointed out yesterday.

Alex said: This is a misrepresentation of me. What affiliation with minarchism? I had come to negatively define anarcho-capitalism after having been one myself! ... The claim that I was a minarchist while making such claims about anarcho-capitalism is false - I held the exact same position I do now upon making those claims and considered myself a market anarchist. The allusion to me as a minarchist has nothing to do with this.

Looking at Alex's old blog and his past influence from Ron Paul, I presumed that he had defined "anarcho-capitalism" that way. On his old blog, Alex had defined "anarcho-capitalism" as a system of competing private defense agencies operated by large bureaucratic firms. However, most self-described "anarcho-capitalists" disagree with Alex's narrow definition. These "anarcho-capitalists" define "anarcho-capitalism" more broadly, as a system in which its constituent individuals abide by the non-aggression principle. I hope this clarifies it up.

Alex said: My problem with anarcho-capitalism is in the assumption of a certain absolutist norm of property rights and by making a reductio ad absurdum out of what *some* anarcho-capitalists advocate. ... Anarcho-mercantalist would like to fool people into thinking that all of this is purely a semantic issue when it isn't. ... This is not merel about labels.

I agree with Alex here. I try to minimize my use of "anarcho-capitalism" because of its connotations, especially when I communicate with strangers. In general, as I mentioned before, I dislike to describe myself with one-word, two-word, or three-word labels. I also disagree with with the beliefs that some (or most) of the "anarcho-capitalists" hold. In your quote of me, I meant that some "non-vulgar" market anarchists continue to use "anarcho-capitalism" to label themselves, even if they know that some (or most) of the "anarcho-capitalists" conflate the current system with a free market.

Alex said: it is generally revolved around the concern that "sticky ownership of land" as a normative absolute can justify authoritarianism, have bad socio-economic consequences and ultimately devolve into states. The concerns about anarcho-capitalism are not merely over the term itself.

I know the consequences if we take "sticky" land ownership to the absolute. It might result in some cartelization of land, thus might devolve into a state. Nevertheless, the current system already cartelizes land.

Many "anarcho-capitalists" even favor land redistribution of past stolen land. See Rothbard's article on the Confiscation and the Homestead Principle.

Many mutualists therefore do not see much difference between mutualism and "left-Rothbardianism." However, as I described earlier in an unexpectedly famous post titled The Left-Libertarian Strategy, the "left-Rothbardians" and the mutualists differ by a lot.

Alex said: Some "anarcho-capitalists" likely dislike the term "market anarchism" precisely because it implies that they do not have a monopoly on free market ideas in anarchism. The resistance to "market anarchism" as an umbrella is a reinforcement of my own claim that "anarcho-capitalists" tend to be monocentric.

I only partially agree with you here. Let us clarify this below.

Alex said: I have never taken an absolutist anti-private-property position.

I apologize for misrepresenting you of opposing "private property" in all contexts. Anyway, I identify myself as a "poor and sloppy writer." Also, as you mentioned, I support "voluntary cooperatives" and oppose "corporations" if I follow your definitions.

I consider this sentence that I have written as unclear:

Anarcho-mercantilist said: I think Cork use 'private property' to mean the 'non-aggression principle'

So we will rephrase and clarify the above statement: Cork used "private property" to mean that "no social anarchist has the right to harm the legitimate private property of third parties." I used "legitimate private property" here to refer to the private property legitimately owned by individuals, not stolen property held by a monarch or by the state (which includes taxpayer-funded contractors).

Let us explain what Cork means below.

We find it unquestionable that all social anarchists—regardless of the anarcho-communist, anarcho-syndicalist, or anarcho-collectivist stripe—hate "capitalism" and "wage labor."

Thus, the social anarchists will invade ancapistan and attack their factory bosses, managers, landowners, and financiers—all the occupations that they consider as parasitic. Cork fears about this!

Alex might object to this claim because many social anarchists (such as Bakunin) speak of "voluntary associations." However, the social anarchists have a different conception of what "voluntary" means. As I mentioned before in another comment, the social anarchists define the expropriation of capital and land by the workers as a non-aggressive act. Therefore, because the social anarchists argue the expropriation of capital and land as "voluntary," they will invade ancapistan and attack their factory bosses, managers, landowners, and financiers.

Mike Gogulski (who describes himself as an anarcho-capitalist) has commented his thoughts on the social anarchists in his post titled Agorism and Ancap Panarchy. Mike, in one of his comments, has expressed the same fear that the social anarchists will attack ancapistan.

We hope that this clarifies Cork's thoughts on the social "anarchists."

5 comments:

Brainpolice said...

"Alex had defined "anarcho-capitalism" as a system of competing private defense agencies operated by large bureaucratic firms. However, most self-described "anarcho-capitalists" disagree with Alex's narrow definition. These "anarcho-capitalists" define "anarcho-capitalism" more broadly, as a system in which its constituent individuals abide by the non-aggression principle. I hope this clarifies it up."

No, it doesn't clarify anything, becuse you're strawmanning me AGAIN. I never defined ancap that way. I WAS an ancap by the end of writting that blog, and your attempt to bring my past in this is a cheap trick. I WAS an anarcho-capitalist, you fool. I didn't define it negatively as corporatism, I advocated it!

Brainpolice said...

"Many "anarcho-capitalists" even favor land redistribution of past stolen land. See Rothbard's article on the Confiscation and the Homestead Principle."

Guess, what? I have linked many anarcho-capitalists to that and taken that position, and most of the ancaps have argued against that position. You ae simply misleading people if you want to claim that most modern ancaps agree with Rothbard on that. They don't - agorists and left-libertarians tend to.

The fact of the matter is that "most" ancaps are not left-rothbardians, they're right-rothbardians and hoppeans. I haveebated many ancaps at mises.org over the past few years on that very issue, and I was denounced as a left-libertarian deviant for taking Rothbard's position from the 60's.

It is mostly the agorists and left-libertarians who cling to that aspect of Rothbard.

Cork said...

Great post, this was a good explanation of what I believe.

anarcho-mercantilist said...

Thanks, Cork. Glad that I explained your thoughts correctly.

qoscious said...

oK.... hii!