Why I am an anarchist

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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Fixed Cross » Fri Nov 15, 2013 2:08 am

Hmmm... I noticed I am talking total nonsense now that I am talking about the Church.
I'll still post what I wrote just now, but unfortunately I guess we can't do away with the justice system.

I guess that's what the constitution was all about...

Sorry about that.

(I prefer to admit mistakes immediately)

Hold Occams razor to the state and see it reduced to a church-like institution.
The church can, if functioning, fulfill every task that humans can not properly do by private enterprise.

For a tenth of ones income, the church could provide for bread, fruit, clean water, decent healthcare, some public housing, and that is really al there is to it except from the only true necessity of the state - police.

Privates can organize education, companies will want to pave roads, -
and really, ultimately the safety of privates is guaranteed by no police force, and always between a consensus of relatively wealthy people in an area.
Police always comes after the fact. The justice system trails years behind every conspiracy. In high end crimes, tracks are by definition covered most professionally.

What happens to the person why commits the crime? He becomes notorious, people shun him. He will be subject to intimidation and robbery. There will be violence. There will be anarchy.

This is the reality we of every creed have to face - there will always be chaos.
It is in the sort of order we value that the question of politics must be placed -
we can't resolve the will to power.



We can only cultivate the power to will.
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I've been guided somewhat by William Blake's quote: "I must create a system or be enslaved by another mans; I will not reason and compare: my business is to create". Just change 'system' for 'style'. - Bill

The strong do what they can, the weak accept what they must.
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Silhouette » Fri Nov 15, 2013 10:07 pm

Uccisore wrote:If something is individually owned, then nobody else SHOULD have a say in how he or she controls it. But if what they are doing with their property is creating a product to sell, then by definition the people they want to sell to have a say on if they buy the product or not. If the State decides that we only need one kind of toothpaste, then I get the choice of buying it, or letting my teeth rot (possibly both).

Lol.
You're making it sound like there's some huge gulf between:
a) workers making something using non-privately-owned materials and means of production and selling it to people who want to either buy it or not, and
b) workers making something using privately owned materials and means of production and selling it people who want to either buy it or not....

That's the only difference...
Choice still exists - it's not like as soon as you use non-privately owned things to produce/serve then you're in an authoritarian totalitarian dictatorship that decides what you can buy. It just means that the produce/service you purchased came from workers not using privately owned things as opposed to using privately owned things. That's it. No jump to Nineteen Eighty-Four is required. It's simpler than you seem to think.

Uccisore wrote:If the same entity that is issuing you your currency is dictating everything there is available to buy with it and how much it costs, then your economic freedom is a lie, and with it goes any real sense of 'wealth'.

This makes no sense. If you receive your pay from within a network of capitalist businesses, and the same network dictates everything there is available to buy with the money they gave you, and how much it costs.... then your economic freedom and real sense of 'wealth' is NOT a lie? But if the network is "the State" then exactly the same thing IS a lie?

Uccisore wrote:If I have a dollar, and I can either spent it in a society where multiple companies are competing to provide me with the most appealing product, or I can spent it in a society where the State or "the people" are determining what I'm allowed to buy based on what they've decided is the best for society, I know who is getting my dollar. And I know how everybody else on earth with the sense to understand the choice is spending their dollar too...which is why Marxist (or 'Marxesque' to avoid that whole thing again) systems always require a totalitarian regime that outlaws capitalism, and capitalist societies can fully allow companies and individuals to behave in a socialist way if they choose to.

Completely irrelevant, as the choices I am talking about are, yes, spending your money in an economy where "multiple companies competing to provide me with the most appealing product", but no, not some authoritarian totalitarian dictatorship that determines "what I'm allowed to buy based on what they've decided is the best for society".

Rid yourself of this annoying (not to mention erroneous) association of Socialism with authoritarian totalitarian dictatorships. Please. Just consider the ONLY distinction I'm making here:
Originates:
a) from non-privately-owned materials and means of production, as opposed to
b) from privately owned materials and means of production.

That's it. I'm repeating myself, but apparently saying it one time is not enough for all you three.
Multiple companies can still compete to provide you with the most appealing product in Socialism *SHOCK HORROR*. It's just that origin of their processes are in non-privately owned things, not privately owned things.

Is any of this getting through yet?

Uccisore wrote:I'm more hung up on the word 'distribution'- the idea that there is some power or another that has everything, and is in the position to decide who gets what and why. I could care less about the criteria, that there is a presumption of an It doing the distributing is enough for me to balk.

I find it ironic when pro-capitalists of any kind, and to any positive degree, speak ill of the idea of "distribution".

As though the market weren't a mechanism designed to "distribute" wealth...

I mean, it's so obvious when you realise it's exactly the same thing. Except, of course, the market is an intentional mess of ownership -> management decisions about how to price their products/services, sort of converging (though constantly dynamically fluctuating of course) on some "average" value that depends on how much they want to take vs. how much consumers want to give... biased by power imbalances of course. But if there's any kind of centralised moderation -> management decisions about how to price products/services etc. etc. then suddenly it's the devil. God forbid that any centralised control might be directly democratically run and kept in line by literally everybody equally (subject to whether you want to vote or not, and with completely transparent reasoning available to everyone about what options have been thought of and exactly how and why they are predicted to pan out), without power imbalance (from more money equalling more votes) and without the risk of those in power being able to push things in their favour (because they don't own anything in the workplace any more than anyone else does, so they can't distort things in their favour). I mean, literally all bases are covered and all you have is an economy based on co-operation, fairness and choice as well as competition...
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Silhouette » Fri Nov 15, 2013 10:47 pm

Fixed Cross wrote:I haven't called you anything at all.
I was discussing psychological principles and the assumptions implicit in a doctrine, not you.

FC, I was merely quoting what I had said about not being a Socialist or a Marxist. Though what I was quoting wasn't actually in reply to you, but to Das Experiment.

Fixed Cross wrote:It's really annoying that Das Experiment was banned.

Is he really banned again? I guess the grounds were that you're not allowed to use another account once you've been banned (presumably until your ban has expired, if there is an expiry). A shame, he's done nothing but positively contribute since resurrecting himself under his new name. He probably saw it coming though, hence his choice of name.

Fixed Cross wrote:What matters is how you understand these doctrines and how you present this understanding. No one cares what you vote.

Yes, and I understand them very reasonably, and a lot better than anyone else seems to here.
And in a democracy (especially in a direct one), my vote is (allegedly) cared about thank you very much - even if only to an incredibly tiny relative extent.

Fixed Cross wrote:"Just as organs and cells in a single human body"

If you see humans primarily as a part of a whole, instead of primarily as individual and self-determining, then you are a totalitarian, a socialist, a transhumanist.

I see humans as entities to whom any political or economic whole they belong to is a matter of choice, of character.

I simply take into account the bigger picture, whilst not forgetting the individual picture. I attempt to transcend humanism and transhumanism - in order to sufficiently present Socialism (or at least my own ideology) accurately.

Fixed Cross wrote:Then you acknowledge the logical mistake but use it as a rule anyway.

What's illogical about using the name of a set, rather than the individual elements within that set? Especially if it is obvious that I'm only talking about the concrete individual elements within the set, but more succinctly.

Fixed Cross wrote:Proper definitions do not rank very highly in your conception of logic, I see.
A bit eerie, Silhouette.

What's improper about using the definitions presented by the founders of the doctrines in question? And as a minor point, logic can only happen after definitions.

Fixed Cross wrote:I see you no longer care to present an argument for your opinion.

Reason being that I am being led into a trap:
If I speak of my own ideas, I am lazily dismissed as a Socialist and/or Marxist because of the existence of some common ground, regardless of any differences.
And if I clarify Socialism and/or Marxism in order to educate and also elucidate the differences between it and my own ideas, I am criticised for not speaking of my own arguments.

It's dishonest and dis-intellectual. The highest sin in my holy book.
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Uccisore » Sat Nov 16, 2013 3:32 am

Hey Silhouette,

One gigantic thread about the evils of socialism and capitalism is about all I have time for in a day. Feel free to take points you made that you feel demand a response and stick them over in our other discussion.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n8mPuckq ... ure=vmdshb

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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Fixed Cross » Fri Nov 22, 2013 12:13 am

Silhouette wrote:
Fixed Cross wrote:I haven't called you anything at all.
I was discussing psychological principles and the assumptions implicit in a doctrine, not you.

FC, I was merely quoting what I had said about not being a Socialist or a Marxist. Though what I was quoting wasn't actually in reply to you, but to Das Experiment.

Okay... heat of the moment.

Fixed Cross wrote:It's really annoying that Das Experiment was banned.

Is he really banned again? I guess the grounds were that you're not allowed to use another account once you've been banned (presumably until your ban has expired, if there is an expiry). A shame, he's done nothing but positively contribute since resurrecting himself under his new name. He probably saw it coming though, hence his choice of name.

Yes, they banned his person, not just his login.
Logical in a sense but a shame. It's dead here since he's banned. No idea if it's causal.

Fixed Cross wrote:What matters is how you understand these doctrines and how you present this understanding. No one cares what you vote.

Yes, and I understand them very reasonably, and a lot better than anyone else seems to here.
And in a democracy (especially in a direct one), my vote is (allegedly) cared about thank you very much - even if only to an incredibly tiny relative extent.

For me, I realize my vote is purely symbolic. I've never had a party enter the cabinet on my vote that hadn't in deliberations shed all intentions on the basis of which I voted for it.

And I understand socialism and communism as well as I think can be expected of a modern since I not only live in what used to be an advanced socialist state, I grew up in the inner circle of the communist party and have seen how the motivation eroded after the wall came down and the Union fell. I have been able to document precisely what did and what doesn't work.

A lot of it worked and is better than now. But I saw how much what was good about socialism became what's bad about bureaucracy. It couldn't last.

I asked what possible good could come of it save the Gulag, the answer is "good intentions", a lot of them, and a lot of good people to hold them.

It was good for a while. But it had to turn into what it's become.
Human nature.
If I am not mistaken, what we're experiencing now wasn't charted by Marx. Power is more clever even than Marx could predict.
It turned out to be possible to satisfy the proletariat indefinitely without bringing about the Revolution.

Or so it seems. Power differences are more extreme than they were in Marx time, and yet European proletarians are more wealthy.

Fixed Cross wrote:"Just as organs and cells in a single human body"

If you see humans primarily as a part of a whole, instead of primarily as individual and self-determining, then you are a totalitarian, a socialist, a transhumanist.

I see humans as entities to whom any political or economic whole they belong to is a matter of choice, of character.

I simply take into account the bigger picture, whilst not forgetting the individual picture. I attempt to transcend humanism and transhumanism - in order to sufficiently present Socialism (or at least my own ideology) accurately.

Who doesn't take into account the bigger picture? That is what politics and even more so philosophy is about.
for a moment there you exposed socialisms worst logical flaw - to think that the human species can be interpreted as a "set" without doing damage to the very concept of individuality.

The individual is boundless. When left to his devices, this produces the bounty of industry and trade.
When over regulated, the human spirit becomes diseased.

The human being was born to deal with the harshness of the world. Denying him this harshness makes him sick and obsolete to himself.

All these are deeply masculine principles and I understand that in practice the caring part needs to be institutionalized somewhat. But I see this as family foremost.

I'm surprised at how conservative I am, but after all I've seen there's not much else left to be.
The state is irrelevant when you've got a community of rational minds.

A guy quoted another guy in the paper yesterday: "The mere existence of the state suggests that the human being is infantile." I agree with that wholeheartedly.

The logic of this is quite irrefutable, even though it is not denied thereby that the human is not in fact infantile.
Still. I say give him the benefit of the doubt. At least, those who wish to take care of themselves, let them.
Even apes can take care of themselves. WTF, honestly. W'ere the only species that doesn't just cage other species, but even itself.

Fixed Cross wrote:Then you acknowledge the logical mistake but use it as a rule anyway.

What's illogical about using the name of a set, rather than the individual elements within that set? Especially if it is obvious that I'm only talking about the concrete individual elements within the set, but more succinctly.

If you're going to make a set that's coherent, you can't just take 'human beings' as its components.
You'll need to take the entire spectrum of organic life and its conditions with you.
"Human Being" is artificial and therefore abusive term.

I don't expect you'll follow me into this marxist French type of analysis, but I'll say it anyway. The very fact that we think of ourselves as the signifiers of a species causes the violence of race and creed and wars of attrition. The forced "set" around us is what makes us the most ugly and jealous among the Earths residents. And my own generosity and beauty is only caused by my will to stand free of this set and be an actual entity who doesn't need to be told to be good to his fellow Earthlings.

Fixed Cross wrote:Proper definitions do not rank very highly in your conception of logic, I see.
A bit eerie, Silhouette.

What's improper about using the definitions presented by the founders of the doctrines in question? And as a minor point, logic can only happen after definitions.

Of course, I just do not wish to define other humans to the point of fitting them in a set. As such VO breaks with the notion of a set as representing the full content of its components.

As follows from my definitions, I can not nor can any creature like be fitted in the set that is defined by anyone else but itself/myself.

I believe that individualized interest generally serves the world and collectivized interest never.

Fixed Cross wrote:I see you no longer care to present an argument for your opinion.

Reason being that I am being led into a trap:
If I speak of my own ideas, I am lazily dismissed as a Socialist and/or Marxist because of the existence of some common ground, regardless of any differences.
And if I clarify Socialism and/or Marxism in order to educate and also elucidate the differences between it and my own ideas, I am criticised for not speaking of my own arguments.

It's dishonest and dis-intellectual. The highest sin in my holy book.

It's the heat of the moment. You have to be able to withstand fierce attacks if you're defining something as ambiguous and self-contradicting as socialism.

All I'm saying is don't even think of moving in the direction of Magsj. I for one respect almost nothing more than an individual adjusting his opinion after listening to valid arguments, and really don't care for anyones intellectual pride. And you're not going to stand there tell me I don't know socialism. There's hardly a position thinkable from which one could have observed it with more clarity. I'm 2 degrees of separation from Mao and 3 from Stalin, and yet I've grown up in the most tranquil socialist environment a state has probably ever produced.

Vices and virtues are known to me. Virtues ultimately just human virtues, the vices are truly robotic.
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I've been guided somewhat by William Blake's quote: "I must create a system or be enslaved by another mans; I will not reason and compare: my business is to create". Just change 'system' for 'style'. - Bill

The strong do what they can, the weak accept what they must.
- Thucydides
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Silhouette » Sat Nov 23, 2013 7:50 pm

Fixed Cross wrote:For me, I realize my vote is purely symbolic. I've never had a party enter the cabinet on my vote that hadn't in deliberations shed all intentions on the basis of which I voted for it.

Me neither, in fact I've never had a party who I voted for come into power.

Fixed Cross wrote:I understand socialism and communism as well as I think can be expected of a modern since I not only live in what used to be an advanced socialist state.

I'm interested to know how and in what way this "advanced socialist state" operated, as distinct from the regular State Capitalism that seemingly nearly everywhere else seems to have had for a very long time to all sorts of degrees. I want to compare your experiences to my understanding of the theory of Socialism, but moreso to my own leanings. If I judge your experiences as similar enough to the theory, I will obviously have to re-think my beliefs, of which I am not afraid: I am not at all interested in anything other than the realistic.

You say things just turned into a huge bureaucracy that couldn't last? Because of "human nature"!? - You then go straight into a criticism of treating humans as a homogeneous "set", with which I agree, so I'm not buying that one.
And surely bureaucracy isn't as bad as the mess we're in now, which was also - as you say - the product of good intentions.

Each individual is not boundless, though the range of differences between each individual can be boundless. The trick is to treat the current range as it is, and leave room for the current range's inevitable change. This is exactly my good intenion in taking the current social nature of humanity together with its individualistic nature for what it is (instead of focusing far too much on the latter, as Capitalism does) and then leave it up to direct democracy to keep up with how things change over time. People are to regulate themselves how they want, they aren't "over-regulated" like we are today, which I agree diseases the human spirit.

Fixed Cross wrote:The human being was born to deal with the harshness of the world. Denying him this harshness makes him sick and obsolete to himself.

All these are deeply masculine principles and I understand that in practice the caring part needs to be institutionalized somewhat. But I see this as family foremost.

It's no more "masculine" to deal with harshness than it is "feminine" to be co-operative. And regardless of sex, nobody wants things to be so harsh that things become impossible and overly harmful. Harshness needs to be moderated, just as private ownership of the means of production needs to be stopped.

Rational minds are exactly what I intend, with any centralised State solely being responsible for using force to prevent force. Rational minds are the most effective and turn out to be the ones directly democratically elected in an atmosphere of openness and transparency. They manage everything else.

Fixed Cross wrote:If I am not mistaken, what we're experiencing now wasn't charted by Marx. Power is more clever even than Marx could predict.
It turned out to be possible to satisfy the proletariat indefinitely without bringing about the Revolution.

Or so it seems. Power differences are more extreme than they were in Marx time, and yet European proletarians are more wealthy.

If I'm not mistaken, Marx never claimed to see the future. I am more interested in how his analysis of Capitalism is as true today as it was in his time. His predictions are still remarkable, though I reasonably do not take them as flawless and encompassing of all the interesting details that he couldn't possibly have foreseen. He was just a very clever guy, not a prophet, and this is exactly how I treat him.

Fixed Cross wrote:I don't expect you'll follow me into this marxist French type of analysis, but I'll say it anyway. The very fact that we think of ourselves as the signifiers of a species causes the violence of race and creed and wars of attrition. The forced "set" around us is what makes us the most ugly and jealous among the Earths residents. And my own generosity and beauty is only caused by my will to stand free of this set and be an actual entity who doesn't need to be told to be good to his fellow Earthlings.

Nice reverse psychology. Though I'm not going to follow you into the fallacy that abstract thinking should be thrown out in favour only of concrete. You just said earlier that politics and even more so philosophy is all about taking into account the big picture. This is the second time you've directly contradicted yourself in the same thread.

Abstract groupings of concrete individuals are indeed going to conflict. Not everybody thinks the same and has the same experiences, nor should they be expected to. Again, this is why we have direct democracy, which allows us flexibility and the ability to try different things in real time with what people actually want. Some are going to work better than others, whether or not everyone agrees, and those who don't agree are able to splinter off. If you like, you can live entirely by yourself like you want to be treated?

Fixed Cross wrote:It's the heat of the moment. You have to be able to withstand fierce attacks if you're defining something as ambiguous and self-contradicting as socialism.

I'm trying to stick to the simple idea of prohibiting the ownership of private property of the means of production, in favour of direct democracy. The inability of others to separate this from Socialism and all the other things they associate with that term brings me back to defending Socialism, sure, but that is not meant to be the essence of my proposals. Even more essential is simply the intention to find a solution to all our current problems, whatever label you want to put on it.

Fixed Cross wrote:All I'm saying is don't even think of moving in the direction of Magsj. I for one respect almost nothing more than an individual adjusting his opinion after listening to valid arguments, and really don't care for anyones intellectual pride. And you're not going to stand there tell me I don't know socialism. There's hardly a position thinkable from which one could have observed it with more clarity. I'm 2 degrees of separation from Mao and 3 from Stalin, and yet I've grown up in the most tranquil socialist environment a state has probably ever produced.

Instance #2 of reverse psychology. I will adjust my views if it is rational to do so. I have invited you to add more detailed anecdotal evidence to the discussion, which I fully intend to take into account. I want my ideas to be tested because I want them to be as persuasive as possible - whatever they end up being.
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Fixed Cross » Sun Nov 24, 2013 3:59 am

Human nature is to not fit in categories. Whenever you categorize humans the result is violence.
This is one categorical truth about humans that I am willing to postulate.

Holland has had a solid number of socialist cabinets. Parliamentary democracy where the proletariat gets to vote and represent itself along with the owners of the means of production, and thus become co-owners - this is an advanced stated of socialism. It is not yet communism, but the communists were the spearhead of the movement, which was in numbers largely social-democratic. The movement was socialist in every respect of the word.

If there was any one philosopher who claimed to see the future it was Marx... historical necessity being his thing, his orientation. He took from Hegel what he could in the battle of wills he intuited, and played a part in confusing man with machine. Marx translated man into Machine in the finality of the narrative. He yielded to the dominating capital so far that it became the signifier of his future-species... - 'the enlightened proletariat'...

Which is us, right now.
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I've been guided somewhat by William Blake's quote: "I must create a system or be enslaved by another mans; I will not reason and compare: my business is to create". Just change 'system' for 'style'. - Bill

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- Thucydides
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Silhouette » Mon Nov 25, 2013 10:05 pm

Fixed Cross wrote:Human nature is to not fit in categories. Whenever you categorize humans the result is violence.
This is one categorical truth about humans that I am willing to postulate.

Did you not realise that I have been agreeing with this all along?

Fixed Cross wrote:Holland has had a solid number of socialist cabinets. Parliamentary democracy where the proletariat gets to vote and represent itself along with the owners of the means of production, and thus become co-owners - this is an advanced stated of socialism. It is not yet communism, but the communists were the spearhead of the movement, which was in numbers largely social-democratic. The movement was socialist in every respect of the word.

You're not being terribly specific.
Everyone gets to vote in Holland and therefore everyone is co-owner of the means of production? And what's Socialism? Lol. I really hope that's not what you're saying.

Fixed Cross wrote:If there was any one philosopher who claimed to see the future it was Marx... historical necessity being his thing, his orientation. He took from Hegel what he could in the battle of wills he intuited, and played a part in confusing man with machine. Marx translated man into Machine in the finality of the narrative. He yielded to the dominating capital so far that it became the signifier of his future-species... - 'the enlightened proletariat'...

Which is us, right now.

Yeah I'm "enlightened proletariat", and I presume that most people on this forum are too. I'm not quite sure how Marx confused man with machine - here you've got me trying to back up Marxism just as Ucci is always trying to make me back up Socialism, even though I am neither simply Socialist nor Marxist. I just like truth and reality, and regardless of the fact that these sometimes have things in common with Marxism and/or Socialism, I'd rather focus on the point here: prohibiting private ownership over the means of production.

So now, where were we? You were telling me about your superior understanding and physical involvement with Socialism in practice, and what form it actually took, I hope?
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Fixed Cross » Tue Nov 26, 2013 3:56 pm

[dp]
Last edited by Fixed Cross on Tue Nov 26, 2013 4:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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I've been guided somewhat by William Blake's quote: "I must create a system or be enslaved by another mans; I will not reason and compare: my business is to create". Just change 'system' for 'style'. - Bill

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- Thucydides
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Fixed Cross » Tue Nov 26, 2013 3:56 pm

Silhouette wrote:
Fixed Cross wrote:Human nature is to not fit in categories. Whenever you categorize humans the result is violence.
This is one categorical truth about humans that I am willing to postulate.

Did you not realise that I have been agreeing with this all along?

I did not realize, no. I still don't. But I am glad you agree.

Fixed Cross wrote:Holland has had a solid number of socialist cabinets. Parliamentary democracy where the proletariat gets to vote and represent itself along with the owners of the means of production, and thus become co-owners - this is an advanced stated of socialism. It is not yet communism, but the communists were the spearhead of the movement, which was in numbers largely social-democratic. The movement was socialist in every respect of the word.

You're not being terribly specific.
Everyone gets to vote in Holland and therefore everyone is co-owner of the means of production? And what's Socialism? Lol. I really hope that's not what you're saying.

No, people elected into power become co owners as we see with the nationalization of banks by our socialist ex minister of finances and his subsequent appointment high up at Shell.

It's a complex game, you're bent on making it so simple.

Lol?

Don't even start with that.

You're ignoring the most crucial of my and Uccisore's points, and then laughing at me for your own misunderstanding of a point that you half addressed.

But I am still waiting for your definition of Socialism, as so far you've not said an awful lot beyond how smart or right you think you are.
You tend to say that instead of producing arguments.

Fixed Cross wrote:If there was any one philosopher who claimed to see the future it was Marx... historical necessity being his thing, his orientation. He took from Hegel what he could in the battle of wills he intuited, and played a part in confusing man with machine. Marx translated man into Machine in the finality of the narrative. He yielded to the dominating capital so far that it became the signifier of his future-species... - 'the enlightened proletariat'...

Which is us, right now.

Yeah I'm "enlightened proletariat", and I presume that most people on this forum are too.

Thats what I said yes.

I'm not quite sure how Marx confused man with machine -

Did he??
No idea that he did.
In the meantime, I wrote something else, maybe check that out.

here you've got me trying to back up Marxism just as Ucci is always trying to make me back up Socialism, even though I am neither simply Socialist nor Marxist. I just like truth and reality

And reading very quickly.

, and regardless of the fact that these sometimes have things in common with Marxism and/or Socialism, I'd rather focus on the point here: prohibiting private ownership over the means of production.

Well focus on that because that, as Ucci has laid out, is quite the ambitious twist of logic.

Give it a shot man. Stop with the introductions.

How can the means of production be collectively owned without a top down control?

So now, where were we? You were telling me about your superior understanding and physical involvement with Socialism in practice, and what form it actually took, I hope?

I assume you've read Marx, so I advice you to begin with reading something like Kolakowski's The Main Currents of Marxism to get a bit of background on what Socialism is to actual socialists and issues like how it has achieved its goals in Germany in the 19th century. You seem blissfully ignorant of the actual socialist perspective - i.e. of the accomplishments of the humans involved, from Marx to Mitterand and all in between. Socialism is not for you to define. It's already been defined by Marx and then by hundreds of millions upon hundreds of millions of life-efforts.

Maybe you can show how their mistakes (such as thinking of humanity as a collective "set") are unnecessary and socialism can still be socialism without them.
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby James S Saint » Tue Nov 26, 2013 4:30 pm

Fixed Cross wrote:Maybe you can show how their mistakes (such as thinking of humanity as a collective "set") are unnecessary and socialism can still be socialism without them.

That's it, right there in a nutshell. 8)

Collectives are always idiots even when made of geniuses.
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony :)
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You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Silhouette » Tue Nov 26, 2013 9:54 pm

I'm pretty sure I have defined Socialism several times, but on the off-chance that it's always been in threads/posts that you haven't read, here's another run-down:

According to Marx, Socialism is predicted (as opposed to mystically foreseen) to be the next form of economy after Capitalism, which followed Feudalism, which followed Tribalism. Though its purpose somewhat comes across as an intermediary stage towards Communism, which we are predicted to lapse into as the Socialist State withers away due to being increasingly unneeded. Historical materialism, inspired by Hegel's dialetic idealism.
According to Lenin, Socialism is to be achieved by violent revolution in which a class conscious "working class" of wage labourers rebel against capitalist employers in their workplace, and the State (which Lenin regards as necessary for Capitalism to exist, in order for the inherent working class vs. capitalist class conflict to be moderated). Class consciousness and understanding of the mechanics of Capitalism (as detailed by Marx) unites the army, which is comprised of working class individuals, with other working class individuals, backing up their mutinies within the workplace, whereby they physically remove the capitalists who own the means of production from the company. The capitalists are not reimbursed, only given the option to join in with the working class or be excluded altogether. The company runs just as it did before, only without anybody using the means of production as a means to make more money: money is only permitted to be used for consumption rather than capital. It is the responsibility, just as before, for the workers to ensure the means of production are maintained and that demand is satisfied... just as before. Any owner isn't needed, and never has been, for this to occur. This responsibility is the essence of any "ownership" under Socialism (and Communism).
The State functions only as a means to quell counter-revolution and is not involved in orchestrating any of the workers' decisions or any oppression over the lives of any of the working class. Experts can continue to work where they worked, continuing institutions such as schools, law courts and police force, who function as normal. As counter-revolution dies down, so the State is less and less necessary until it withers away completely (enter Communism).

Overall, there is a surprising similarity to the functioning of the Socialist economy to the Capitalist one before it.
And there are no overlords, dictators, indirectly elected government officials etc. to make everyone's lives identical and grey.

This isn't a definition as such, but it should be a fairly comprehensive explanation of how things need to be in order for an economy to be Socialist, and I am merely going by the theory (and practice in case of Lenin - as distinct from Stalin) of the primary creators and instigators of the term.

If we simply go by the above, without the normal embellishment that seems to automatically occur in minds of those who are ignorant of the above, we can start to understand what Socialism actually is. I'm aware that Authoritarian Totalitarian dictators have used the term to describe their economies, but hopefully you see the clear distinctions between those realities, and what Socialism actually is.

Holland would appear to be attempting to achieve Socialism without the Leninist revolution initiation. This tends to take the form of Social Democracy (as you seem to recognise), which is essentially still Capitalism, but moderated by the State to a greater extent than we tend to see elsewhere in the Capitalist West. I support the idea of proletariat co-ownership of companies, given Capitalism, which we see in capitalist England (for example) with the existence of such companies as John Lewis. It thus seems rather odd to label this practice as "advanced Socialism" or "Socialist in every respect of the word". If you're speaking of only the party leaders and/or members becoming co-owners then that seems more like a pointless gesture that doesn't actually change anything - and not Socialist at all.

I happen to be a member of the Socialist Party, so I am actually familiar with "actual Socialists". As such, I also happen to know there is a frustrating amount of fragmentation amongst them, due to differing opinions on how to go about instigating Socialist change. Generally they are revolutionary, though some want to schooze with the current government and come to some level of compromise, and others are more cynical about what compromises can realistically be achieved through such methods, and whether or not they would actually do anything towards achieving Socialism. I wouldn't really count the Social Democrats who simply want to push co-operative capitalist ownership as Socialists. I would count them as Social Democrats.

But the whole reason why I do not identify as a Socialist (despite being a member of their party) is that I side more with Social Democrats in their pursuit of co-operative ownership, but combined with the outlawing of owning the means of production as a means to make more money. I do not think revolution is a realistic hope in the modern West - people are far too sedated. I side with simply educating people about what Socialism actually is according to the people who came up with it (as you can see, I've not ONCE defined it differently to suit myself), and familiarising people with what is actually going on when Capitalism happens (heavily inspired by, though not religiously reliant upon the Marxist analysis in "Capital").

I am happy to go further into what I'm proposing once people have actually understood this post, and thus Socialism, so that as soon as I start speaking, I'm not immediately dismissed as "a Socialist who wants Authoritarian Totalitarian dictatorships and State rule", as though that weren't a contradiction, and that I am therefore actually saying the opposite to what I'm saying - which seems to be the current consensus.

Hopefully this post should demonstrate how Socialist "ownership" doesn't require top-down control, and that the only definition of "sets" occurs in the distinction between "the use of money as money, resulting in the need to sell one's labour to capitalists when in a capitalist economy" and "the use of money as capital - to make more money". It seems like a fairly simple and well-defined distinction to make, and the issue isn't whether you do both or neither, only that the latter is no longer allowed with Socialism - so it's not imposing any label onto anyone who does either, neither or both. It just highlights two importantly different ways of treating money. And yet, far from any struggle for this distinction to be true for Socialism and for it to remain Socialism, it is essential to Socialism.
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Fixed Cross » Tue Nov 26, 2013 10:32 pm

An excellent post, thank you for that.
I agree with the whole of the definition you've given, and as you know I think that it relies on a flawed idea of reality.
I do not see how the proposed system which you have correctly described can actually produce a similar state of activity as capitalism can. I do not believe that value is primarily use value or that the incentive to work can be taken for granted, which is what your description properly (proper to Marxism and Socialism) leaves out as a point of calculation.

On the whole this is due to my disagreement with Marx about value.

I will post in more detail later. But I would like to ask if you could make an educated guess as to why I see the term "socialist industry" (and thus socialist productivity) as something vastly different than capitalist industry and productivity. I will give some context.

It's not impossible, but it's very difficult to imagine how, practically, the means of distribution are maintained if no one in particular is making a profit on its output. Following the logic of proletarian ownership, the whole set of people that benefit from the production of a certain factory would be responsible for its upkeep. But among these people there will be very few specialists, and those that are do not have a means of designating themselves if no one in particular is responsible for the factory.

If someone in particular is responsible, this amounts to something like ownership without benefits - without private value, which means that the individual doing that work must value himself primarily in terms of the work he is doing for others and be able to regulate a substantial number of people to do the same. This takes a very specific type of human being, a kind of noble mystical king. Socialism would require that all coordinating people have this king in them and are able to produce him daily. That's how I see the beginning of one of the problems you get when the basal incentive to surplus power (wealth) is taken away.
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Silhouette » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:42 pm

Fixed Cross wrote:An excellent post, thank you for that.
I agree with the whole of the definition you've given, and as you know I think that it relies on a flawed idea of reality.

No, thank you for being the first person to realise what I'm actually talking about.

Anyone other volunteers?

For the rest of your post, I'm picking up on two main points:
1) your issue with the "use value" concept, and
2) your issue with non-material motivation.

To address 1):
I think "use value" could have been better named. I regard the essence of the distinction between "use value" and "exchange value" to be in the distinction between value (as what people actually want when it comes to commodities), and what "market value" makes of commodities. The latter is some bizarre averaging of net willingness-to-sacrifice, given the current power imbalance, by all parties with an interest in trading a particular commodity for something else. Its price is a more concrete relative quantification of this "group valuation", which I think you've already agreed to be a myth. Individuals value, but "an average of them" is not a valuing entity.

The former appears to make the same mistake, if not for the possibility of asking use value for whom? "Use value" represents something much more human, provided that it is not being taken as a general group-concept. "Exchange value for whom?" is a meaningless qualification, because exchange value is necessarily standardised, even if there are limited variations between trading outlets and regions, and if they change over time. Whilst I'm against the degree of influence of and importance attributed to "exchange value", I do agree that emphasis should be more on the individual and extend beyond mere "use" when it comes to value. As to whether Marx believed this too, or attempted to describe use value in the same way I'm unsure - I've not read his specific words on the subject. But I'm not really here to discuss Marxism, only to back it up when I know it's being misrepresented, though primarily to push my own ideas.

To address 2):
Non-material motivation is hardly a specifically Marxist concept, it has been widely studied and from what I gather, material reward is not really that important when it comes to motivating people. For the majority of working class people, fear of the proximity of poverty is the primary incentive - and whilst I do not dispute its effectiveness in driving people to work, I do not condone it.

My argument is that money and material are merely objects that do not represent an end, but a means to another end. Achieving a desirable quality of life and standard of living, and the avoidance of an undesirable one seems to be the end. Money can afford material which can in turn afford a more preferable life, whether it takes the form of feeling more powerful or superior, or feeling like you are important and/or belong to the grand scheme of things, or whatever.

Profit and success is ultimately down to these ends, rather than the money and material that is used as a means towards them. One is more in touch with what one wants from life when the emphasis is on the ends rather than the means. People also aspire to enjoy work as an end rather than a means. Specialism is more driven by a genuine enjoyment in performing work, rather than the carrot at the end of the stick. Pride in one's work supercedes pride in the wages that one draws from performing such work. There is just as much responsibility to take care of one's surroundings for workers who want to work in a nice environment, as there is in taking care of someone else's property because they might fire you if you don't. Moreso if one feels proud to be part of a workplace that allows them to work for their own sake rather than for the sake of another, and when working with a team you respect rather than one which you are required to constantly compete against.

This is just from social experimentation of regular people - no noble or special type is needed. Organisation simply emerges if it is not directly controlled, and control doesn't necessarily imply a single person who orders everyone around - decisions are easily decided by group consensus following discussion. A group is even capable of recognising superior efforts by some rather than others, and rewarding them - especially when there is surplus and they are all benefitting and simply desire to show gratefulness.
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Re: Why I am an anarchist

Postby Fixed Cross » Sun Oct 15, 2017 7:06 pm

Uccisore wrote: Hobbes tried to say "here's what people are like", but his premise was far too strong. He really only needed to say "Here's what a few people are like" to justify the state.

Hobbes would have said anything to justify the state. His philosophy comes down to the question of how the intellect can best make the citizens entirely subservient to the crown. It was a shameless time.
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