Wednesday, May 29, 2013

TBGO: "It Looks Good On Paper!"


Anarchy@! But HOW?  While Woody'z admired Forp Yksmohc for literally DECADES, and has been an ardent expostulator of his social and political interpretations throughout most of my own political life, I find his relentless defense of "anarchism" somewhat disingenuous at best, and almost frighteningly naive at worst.
Yes, "anarchism" would be wonderful. Ideally, "nobody'd be the boss of anybody else!" No coercion. No compulsion. No central authority. All agreeing on everything. Man Who WOULDN'T love that?
But Adam Smith maintained that markets, under Capitalism--under ideal conditions of perfect freedom and full knowledge--would be JUST as wonderful. Poinies for EVERYBODY!
You see the problem, doncha?
It's that "ideal conditions of perfect freedom and full knowledge" stuff. It just doesn't happen that way...
So, the single, relevant question, to me, is:
"When, in the (let's say) 10,000 year history of 'civilization' on Terra has there EVER been an enduring, practicable, LARGE-SCALE, successful example of such a form of society which engaged in regular relations with other, non-anarchistic systems.?"
I'd guess: Never?
It has to be 'large-scale,' given SEVEN BILLION humans rambling around the planet, eating everything in sight. Medieval monasteries and convents consisting of some few HUNDREDS of devoted, religious cultists might have brought it off, for a while. It would have to be GLOBAL in fact. You couldn't have enclaves of anarchist regions surrounded by non-democratic societies. Competing, adjacent societies of anarchists na theocrats, for instance, would be in constant conflict.
But large-scale, that is to say, even REGIONAL, efforts such as the Catalan rebellion and the Aragon collectives in the '30s were immediately beset from without, and only survived a very few years. The Paris Communes lasted fewer than 10 weeks.
I sometimes think Noam tosses "anarchism" out just to have something to say when folks ask him, after his critique of the current, corrupt, decrepit, exhausted system,: "Well, what would you replace it with?"
(I apologize if it seems I'm rehashing the same debate; I suppose I am, to a certain extent--a public rehearsal of a work in progress (consonant in every way with the presentation of self in everyday life).)

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