Sunday, December 8, 2013

Anarchical Societies vs Libertarianism

Anarchist Utopian is an oxymoron if there ever was one, right?  Maybe not as much as one thinks. Utopia was this fictional society where everything was perfect. Typically we think of communist or socialist societies as false Utopias. I think to expand the definition to any society that is filled with absolutes and infringes on the liberties of others.

We must ask. Can an Anarchical society that believes in absolute individual liberty infringe on the liberties of others? Any society that deals in absolutes forces their beliefs on others. To understand this we must understand why we have towns and cities. We can start this with “Once upon a time.” Yes – we go that far back. The earliest humans were by nature social creatures.   Unlike animals, they don't abandon their family once grown. Because of this nurturing instinct humans began to share common resources.

In time they found that forming close knit societies helped them survive the ravages of nature and enemies. As time went on and the small communities grew they found that it helped if they had a few to make some of the decisions for all. They would select villagers thought to be the wisest and most educated to make decisions for the community. People found they couldn't leave fields to vote on each small decision needed to be made. Of course there were some who didn't agree with the decisions and they would leave the community. They would sometimes form their own communities with a different set of rules. There was one thing all communities had in common, they had an individual or group to make decisions for the collective.

We know communes such as the Amish have a group of elders to enforce societal rules. Another word for societal rule is law. The ones that aren't happy with their strict way of life move out of the community. No one is forced to live in their society, but if they choose to do so then they must follow strict rules.

Towns and cities are no different. Over the years people of these social communities have made laws by which people must abide. There are many who don't like the taxes and laws of cities and choose to live in the county. But even there you find laws and taxes. The reason there are taxes is the people decided it was more efficient to have a single purchasing body. We could just leave roads to be built by need by capitalist. Some believe that would work quite well. The only practical concept of this that comes to mind are housing developments. Even then residents must pay an annual fee to maintain those streets. Those fees are paid to some governmental body elected/appointed by the community. They pay that in conjunction with taxes needed to maintain streets built by the larger community/city.

For good or bad some people chose to allow government to make decisions for them. They agreed to pay taxes to fund some of these decisions. This is a system that has been around for thousands of years. This system is often abused and an apathetic populous allows this abuse to continue. This doesn't make the system evil or even unneeded.

In some societies there have been armed revolution to remove the abusive government. In others they have manged change through angry protests and occasionally the ballot box. When we are faced with an abusive government we have choices. We can do one of the above or we can simply move to a community or area that better suits how we wish to live.

It is obvious most people are content with a governmental society. If they weren't at least content there would be riots or violent revolution. If we wish to live in a community, but don't like how it functions we can work to effect change. Throughout history movements have created change, some good and bad. If we cannot effect change to our satisfaction we have the choice of moving or simply bow to societal rules.

I get the impression that Anarchists don't want to move and wish to reform society to what they believe best. Some would choose armed revolt to change their community, while others just shout angrily at those who disagree. Anarchist could just move somewhere and start anew. I would love to see how a functioning anarchical society managed. I am sure of one thing, most people will not accept anarchy as a way of life.

This is my concern about Anarchist. If they force anarchy on everyone they have trampled the individual liberties of others. This is where a libertarians differ. We believe people have the right to be communist if that's their desire. We do not want to force anyone to do anything. We accept government has a place, but it must be held to a minimum. We accept communities can have rules, but kept to a minimum.

One Anarchist is angry her neighborhood is about to be annexed into the city. She feels her individual rights are being trampled. Many people have become angry at annexation. I would feel the same way. If enough neighbors help fight annexation it is sometimes defeated. If it can't be defeated there is only one other option – move.

The Anarchist must understand that individualism is fantastic, but it's not the only solution or choice. Revolutions aren't fought by individuals. They are fought by a collective under a central command. This is done for strength. An Anarchist cannot force their beliefs on others because they see that way of life as best. If they force this on others they are guilty of the same violations of individual rights as they claim to hate.

I fight the tyrannical federal government we have today. I see there are problems on the state and local levels as well. If we can return power to the states we can then look inward to the problems there. I believe the Constitution is worth saving and restoring to its original functionality. Laws aren't evil, they are a part of any social community. It's when laws aren't applied equally that they become bad. We have this problem because people are either apathetic or they want government to enforce their personal prejudices.

There is one thing of which we can be sure, societal groups will always have rules. They will always find efficient ways to meet needs, even if that means pooling resources. We as a people must always be leery when allocating power to any group of people. The one thing history has taught us is that absolutes always turn out badly. Absolute anarchy is not Utopia, because perfection doesn't exist. Forcing Anarchy on others is as bad as forcing communism on everyone. Those are both ends of societal extremes.

Communism always fails. The wild west might be as close as we ever came to total anarchy. In time people began to coalesce into communities for a variety of reasons. There is a reason we have no anarchical societies, most people don't want them. I dream someday of a libertarian America, but if even that is done by force it's wrong. My only hope is to convince people that libertarianism is the best course and try to get those who share my beliefs voted into office.

Total anarchy would be the end to this country. I'm not sure many are ready for George Soros' Open Society. The libertarian doesn't always agree on how borders should operate, but we all have a love for this country. We believe in the original Constitution. For this reason I say no to total anarchy and accept that we are social creatures. I can still promote free market solutions to problems and fight to remove as much government from my life as possible. I will fight to make sure others don't use government to force their prejudices on others. I will fight for secession if that's the only way to achieve individual liberty and equality under the law. But at the moment I seek to save this country – not be a part of it's destruction. Total anarchy would make this just a patch of land with a lot of individuals running around doing as they please. I trust we can have a free market without having to resort to anarchy.

The hope of no authority is a pipe dream. We have all had parents telling us what to do. We have teachers and employers that we give some control over our lives. The only way to have total control over your life is to move to a mountain top. If you wish to live in an ordered society some control must be given to others.

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