“Yes, there is class warfare in America. But the real war isn’t left vs. right. It’s freedom vs. tyranny, its libertarianism vs. statism in all its ugly forms, socialism and fascism alike.”
There are various kinds of “libertarianism”; but we here like the term “market anarchy”. Regardless, the experiment with States and governments has been going on for thousands of years and the results are atrocious. When will we try non-violence.
Sheldon Richman writes that it takes a government and its central bank, the Federal Reserve System, to do the following:
- Create barriers to entry for the purpose of sheltering existing banks from competition and radical innovation, then regulate for the benefit of the privileged industry;
- Issue artificially cheap, economy-distorting credit in order to, among other things, give banks incentives to make shaky but profitable mortgage loans (and also to grease the war machine through deficit spending);
- Make it lucrative for banks – and their bonus-collecting executives — to bundle thousands of shaky mortgages into securities and other derivatives with the knowledge that government-sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and other companies, all subject to powerful congressmen looking for campaign contributions, would buy them after a government-licensed rating cartel scores them AAA;
- Inflate an unsustainable housing bubble by the foregoing and other methods, enticing people to foolishly overinvest in real estate.
- Work closely with lending companies to establish a variety of programs designed to lure people with few resources or bad credit into buying houses they can’t afford;
- Attract workers to the home-construction bubble, setting them up for long-term unemployment when the bubble inevitably burst;
- Implicitly guarantee big financial companies and/or their creditors that if they get into trouble they would be rescued;
- Compel the taxpayers to bail out those companies and/or creditors when the roof finally fell in.
He wrote that no single bank or group of banks could do these things on its own in a free market. It takes a government-Wall Street partnership, the corporate state or the fascist state, to create such misery and exploitation.
What we see in the teargas and handcuffs is the government acting naturally. The state is authoritarian power relations which are backed up by force. Often the police force.
The leaders who decide how to use the force of the state surely are influenced by people with power but they themselves are elites with power. Their priority is protect the status quo and to secure the wealth machinery that feeds their political power. But their power comes not just from raw force but also from the people accepting the exercise of force and believing it is legitimate. That or having given up and feel so powerless that the submit to any state action.
But the state is more than just the raw force; it is also individual people who make individual decisions to follow orders. We have said for decades that “I was just following orders” is no excuse. Will the police forces continue to act as they did in Oakland?
At Center for a Stateless Society I read that Thomas Knapp has summarized his experience with the Occupy St. Louis movement and reported that the movement had “an ideological center of gravity somewhere in the neighborhood of ‘mild reform Democrat.’
Doug Henwood of the Left Business Observer described the OWS agenda “Jobs for All” which was unanimously approved by the OWS Demands Working Group (LBO News, October 20) as a “massive jobs program” and said that left-anarchists are trying to block its adoption by the General Assembly.
It is beginning to look like the “occupy” movement is a bunch of “Leftists” asking for the same old “progressive” socialism that they have been asking for over these last hundred years or so. They want to keep corporatism but make sure they get more of the corporate goodies.
They have been called, “a bunch of “Leftists” who are nostalgic for retro capitalism.” Not a bad description.
The Center for a Stateless Society answers with the following”
That depends on what one means by the word “capitalism.” Some market anarchists label their views as “anarcho-capitalism,” while others prefer to identify with “anti-capitalism” or “libertarian socialism.” Still others reject both the labels “capitalism” and “socialism” as too hopelessly distorted in the public consciousness to be used meaningfully in reference to what they advocate.
While there is some ideological diversity that goes along with those three different approaches to labeling market anarchism, they tend to agree on some broad essential prescriptions.
The reason for this disagreement within market anarchism about labels is a flaw in the way capitalism and socialism are conventionally defined by the general public. Non-anarchists who identify as socialists tend to define the economic status quo as “capitalism.” Non-anarchists who identify as free market advocates tend to agree with the socialists that the status quo is “capitalism.” Both typically agree that the status quo is a result of the alleged “free market economy.”
Market anarchists, however, typically disagree that the economic status quo is a result of a free market economy and instead tend to attribute systematic economic injustice to market intervention by the state — that is, to divergence from the free market ideal of absolutely zero state intervention in the economy.
This is not a bad answer.
As it turns out, one either believes in the non-aggression axiom or one believes in using force to make others been to one’s own will. Which kind of person are you?