I wrote a blog. About Anarchy, and how it won't work. Silly me, apparently Anarchy DOES work! I'm just not properly informed. So, I was given some videos to peruse that specifically address the concerns I have with anarchy.
1. Rights are Guarantees
2. An anarchist society is unable to protect its citizens from foreign invasion
3. Anarchy means the non-aggression principle is optional.
4. The Non-Aggression Principle? I didn’t sign sh*t!
5. Private Property
A man attacks some random crappy article that probably took less time to write than the time required to watch the THIRTY SIX minute video debunking it. A list of five things, none of which I ever argued for. It would have been more tolerable if it didn’t feel like the guy was strawmanning MY position as worshiping the government as a be all, end all. He wasn’t, of course(he wasn’t responding to my blog), but the entire video was extremely painful to watch because he never came close to addressing ANY of my points. It felt like I was watching a petty flame war where both sides were uneducated and wrong.
I never discussed the legal system for civil disputes under anarchy. I could have, but I didn't. I did mention how people don't normally come to a clean consensus about laws, but this video didn't talk about that. It talked about clean cut laws like theft. This video was pointless to my specified issues, though I still watched the whole thing just to be sure.
Actually supports my points that monopolies of power can easily cause oppression, breakdowns of government almost always lead to widespread violence and misery, and the morality of the people is more important in preventing abuse than the size or existence of government. Then makes a muddled argument stating that people who can compromise under government can work without government, while not addressing any ideas around power dynamics other than saying concentration of it is bad.
I don’t think Chris actually watched this video before sending it to me… The title supports his arguments, but the content actually didn't.
Falsely claims war isn’t profitable. It is one of the single most profitable activities when handled correctly, as you can take whatever resources you like as the victor. Ever heard the term “spoils of war”? It’s certainly not moral to go to war without very good reason, like human rights abuses or existential threats to friend and family, but money has successfully convinced people to do very evil things throughout history.
But I also never argued anything related to a legal arbitration system for criminal activity being impossible in my original blog. So, another irrelevant video.
Yeah, this is like the third video on an anarchic legal system, this one also about personal disputes. It wasn't one of the issues I specified.
Sidenote: If I missed something or relevance in one of these videos and people wish to point it out, please do. I tried to portray these as fairly as I could, but I'm biased considering I was pretty annoyed at watching so much content that didn't even tell me things I hadn't heard before.
So, what did all of this actually teach me?
All in all… I don’t really think any of these videos were terrible. They explain some things about Anarchy, and while I have some issues with them, they aren’t my current target. No, I’m unfathomably pissed because I was promised that these would enlighten me. They would dispel my unfounded fears about an anarchic state.
They did the exact opposite. In the end, they reinforced my belief that Anarchy wouldn’t work.
You see… these videos were sent to me by a certain @ChrisandAmber. I was discussing with him about my concerns with Anarchy, and the discussion certainly got around to many points. But first, he told me I was repeating debunked propaganda:
When I asked for the relevant debunkings of my clearly frivolous claims(after quite a bit of discussion on various topics between), I was told he didn’t have time.
I expected text, maybe an article or two. What I got was over an hour of videos.
So naturally, instead of taking up their precious time, he asked me to spend MY time doing HIS arguing for him by watching videos which held the answers. I reluctantly agreed, because doing away with all the hassles of government and also not dying in a dystopia sounded like a pretty sweet deal. But as I just got done showing, I was lied to, which I find incredibly disappointing.
To recap, here are the bullet points from my blog where this all originated(link to blog)
Issue 1: Comparing IRL Democratic Republic to Utopian Anarchy
Issue 2: Evil is Profitable
Issue 3: Might is Right
Issue 4: Required Conformity(of thought/morality)
Issue 5: Myth of Authority
Final: Appropriate Level of Bureacracy
I go into detail of each of these issues in my blog, and what they mean. But even if you, the person reading this right now, disagrees with every single one of these things as being real issues, you would still likely agree that the videos I was given did not address even most of them. The more ambiguous ones, maybe slightly, but not satisfactorily as they did nothing to address my specific examples, arguments and counter arguments. I expected this, because I didn’t just Google “top ten reasons Anarchy won’t work”. I thought it through myself. I did my own reading on Anarchy. I’ve chatted with people about Anarchy, anarchists and non-anarchists alike. I don’t recite canned responses, I use my own words.
So, that brings me to my final point…
The most compelling case Anarchy makes is that people can work things out among themselves and generally act morally. Due process isn’t in danger because people will think for themselves and not merely accept the words of their superiors as gospel. They don’t want to oppress each other, they just want to be left alone. Very admirable, and I stated as much in my first blog.
But what if the people aren’t morally principled? Both me and @ME2007Vigil agreed on this, despite not much else: a morally bankrupt populace won’t find liberty, even under anarchy. Which is why this analysis on @ChrisandAmber’s activities is so interesting...
To summarize, @ChrisandAmber has been advocating a reputation system. Despite being against involuntary governmental control on a principled level, he wants to impose a system that could limit people’s access to Minds, such as preventing boosts to people outside their normal bubble. What’s worse, he was already looking to buy influence to set himself as someone who would wield a lot of power under this system.
You want a specific example of him trying to exert his influence on others? He created a list of people that he advised everyone to unsub from. Most of the people he just didn't like, and the reasons he gives speak for themselves.
You see… this was one of the scenarios I put forward. Anarchy being replaced by unscrupulous individuals setting up their own governments. @ChrisandAmber was looking to crown himself as a ruler of the new order of Minds.
Even blatantly disregarding this, and assuming against all available evidence that @ChrisandAmber didn’t have these nefarious intentions, I would like to draw your attention back to this.
He was too lazy to even answer my concerns directly with his own reasoning. That’s a HUGE red flag, and a large contributor to the shortcomings in our current government. Apathy. Everyone just assumes that the big government agencies are doing their jobs because they are supposed to. Lack of accountability means they can do whatever they want. In an Anarchic society, this due diligence is doubly necessary since organizations can move much faster without all the red tape. What happens when rumors start circulating that an agency is doing shady stuff? Will you go to Google and watch the first video that pops up, maybe a second one, then go about your day? Or will you and your fellow citizens pursue the truth until the end and pressure for justice to be done?
I’m a potential ally to this cause. I’m not exactly anti-anarchism, or at least I'm open to reasoned argumentation. But rather than go the extra mile to convince me, @ChrisandAmber directed me to some OTHER people’s opinions on the subject. Think about that. If he does the same thing in an anarchic society, he will just believe what a “trusted” organization tells him. Why do the leg work? They know what they are talking about. They are the “authority” on the matter. You see, he doesn’t have the time to worry about those things, this isn’t his career. It’s not his job.
I don’t believe @ChrisandAmber is merely ignorant or lazy. I see him as not a voluntarist(or however the heck you spell that), but an opportunist. I think he vouches for no government because he sees government as an inconvenient obstacle, given he has had run ins with the law before. He then vouches for more oversight and more control on Minds because he sees it as an opportunity to gain dominance over users, and gain more money and power. That is who I fear in an anarchic society; the double speakers. The two timers. Those who are willing to flip principles on a whim to propel themselves to greater heights, no matter who they might abuse on the way.
This has gone beyond just talking about anarchy or the reputation system, and why they won’t work. This is now a perfect case study on the kind of person who creates dystopias. The kind of person who wants censorship until they are censored, wants communism until they are lined up against a wall, wants affirmative action until they are no longer the minority.
This is the person who, given power and left to their own devices, destroys absolutely everything far more honest and hopeful people sacrifice everything in order to build.
This is the kind of person I do not trust with power.