Is Anarchism an Idea Whose Time Has Come?

  • Posted on: 14 October 2012
  • By: worker

<table><tr><td>From <a href=" - by Katherine Acosta

<em>Anarchist thinking appears to be gaining relevance and acceptance among a larger audience.</em>

<p>It seems that everywhere, these days, people are talking about anarchism. Now <a href="">Dmitry Orlov</a> joins the discussion with a 3-part series, “In Praise of Anarchy.” Utilizing primarily the work of the 19th century Russian anarchist, Peter Kropotkin, Orlov argues that anarchy, rather than hierarchy, is the dominant pattern in nature, that hierarchical organizations ultimately end in collapse, and that the impending collapse of the capitalist industrial system presents an opportunity for the emergence of anarchism.</p><p>Orlov,(aka kollapsnik at <a href="">Club Orlov</a>), is probably best-known for his book, <a href=" Collapse</a>, in which he compares the collapse of the Soviet Union with the imminent collapse of the United States. Russian-born Orlov is in a unique position to make such comparisons. He immigrated to the USA when he was twelve years old, and, as an adult, made numerous trips back to the former USSR in the years immediately following the collapse of its political and economic system.</p></td><td><img title="I totally said this first" src=""></td></tr></tab...

<p>With a wry Russian wit I find immensely attractive, Orlov describes in Reinventing Collapse how people in the USSR were better positioned than are Americans for economic collapse. For example, most Soviet citizens did not own their homes; instead they lived in state-owned dwellings. When the USSR collapsed, they simply remained where they were and nobody evicted them. Compare that with the United States, where people were seduced into signing questionable mortgage agreements for outrageously priced homes, and where, since the economic crisis of 2008, 3 million have been foreclosed upon.</p>

<p>Similarly, few Soviet citizens owned cars, but they could take advantage of a highly developed public transportation system. Most Americans, on the other hand, are car dependent, burdened with the expense car ownership and operation entails. In the USSR, citizens used to inefficient, centrally-planned agricultural policies were already in the habit of growing some of their own food. In recent years, some Americans have wised up to this necessity, but not nearly enough. I’m constantly amazed by the number of people I meet who can’t identify common garden vegetables by their leaves.</p><p>When, exactly, the economic and political collapse of the United States that Orlov has been predicting for five years, (convincingly, in my view), will occur, Orlov cannot say. But he believes it is not far in the future. (His specific arguments for collapse are collected in his most recent book of essays, <a href=" Positive</a>.) Orlov uses the <a href=" of a deteriorating bridge</a> to explain how predictingwhen, something will happen is separate from predicting that it will happen:</p><blockquote><p>Suppose you have an old bridge: the concrete is cracked, chunks of it are missing with rusty rebar showing through. An inspector declares it “structurally deficient.” This bridge is definitely going to collapse at some point, but on what date? That is something that nobody can tell you.</p></blockquote><p>I’ve been reading Orlov for years and never really understood where he was coming from politically. Sometimes I thought I detected a note of libertarianism, but mostly I perceived him as apolitical, or sometimes even fatalistic. Certainly, he is one of the most original thinkers among the “peak oil” intelligentsia, and definitely the most entertaining. Unlike some prominent writers on the <a href="">Oil Drum</a>, he seems to have no interest in either <a href=" oil companies</a> and their rapacious profits or influencing government officials to take some action or other to mitigate the effects of oil depletion. Probably that should have clued me in, but my anarchist antennae were not well-developed until recently.</p><p>In any case, it’s exciting to see Orlov become more overtly political. In <a href="">... I</a> of his series, Orlov introduces the Russian anarchist theorist Peter Kropotkin. Born a prince in 1842, Kropotkin renounced that status and devoted his life to improving the lot of the common man through his writings and activism. Perhaps his most outstanding contribution to anarchist thought is his 1902 book Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution. (The entire book, written in very accessible prose, is available free online <a href="">here</a>.) Kropotkin, a scientist, zoologist, and geographer, argued that mutual aid, rather than competition, is the most common feature of animal behavior and is essential for the survival and evolution of a species:</p><blockquote><p>[E]ven in those few spots [in Eastern Siberia and Northern Manchuria] where animal life teemed in abundance, I failed to find — although I was eagerly looking for it — that bitter struggle for the means of existence, among animals belonging to the same species, which was considered by most Darwinists (though not always by Darwin himself) as the dominant characteristic of struggle for life, and the main factor of evolution…</p><p>[W]herever I saw animal life in abundance, as, for instance, on the lakes where scores of species and millions of individuals came together to rear their progeny; in the colonies of rodents; in the migrations of birds which took place at that time on a truly American scale along the Usuri; and especially in a migration of fallow-deer which I witnessed on the Amur, and during which scores of thousands of these intelligent animals came together from an immense territory, flying before the coming deep snow, in order to cross the Amur where it is narrowest — in all these scenes of animal life which passed before my eyes, I saw Mutual Aid and Mutual Support carried on to an extent which made me suspect in it a feature of the greatest importance for the maintenance of life, the preservation of each species, and its further evolution.</p></blockquote><p>In <a href=" II</a> of his series, Orlov notes that Kropotkin</p><blockquote><p>pointed out that the term “survival of the fittest” has been misinterpreted to mean that animals compete against other animals of their own species, whereas that just happens to be the shortest path to extinction…</p><p>Kropotkin provides numerous examples of what allows animal societies to survive and thrive, and it is almost always cooperation with their own species, and sometimes with other species as well, but there is almost never any overt competition.</p></blockquote><p>Orlov writes that “when most people say ‘Darwinian’ it turns out that they actually mean to say ‘Hobbesian.’” It is probably more accurate to say that the commonly-held notion of social Darwinism is “Spencerian” rather than “Hobbesian,” after the 19th century English social theorist Herbert Spencer, who is credited with coining the phrase “survival of the fittest.” Spencer was a contemporary of Kropotkin and highly influential in his time. Spencer borrowed heavily from evolutionary biology to develop his social theories; for example, his notion that if government intervened in the economy to provide aid for the poor, public education, and so on, it would undermine the ability of individuals to develop adaptive traits, and thus would be a disservice to such individuals and their offspring. Kropotkin’s work on mutual aid was likely a response to these kinds of ideas.</p><p><a href=""... describes</a> Kropotkin’s further observations about the nature of animal social organization:</p><blockquote><p>[A]nimal societies can be quite highly and intricately organized, but their organization is anarchic, lacking any deep hierarchy: there are no privates, corporals, sergeants, lieutenants, captains, majors or generals among any of the species that evolved on planet Earth with the exception of the gun-toting jackbooted baboon (whenever you see an animal wearing jackboots and carrying a rifle—run!)…</p><p>Some groups of animals do explicitly sort themselves out into an order, such as a pecking order among chickens or an eating order in a pride of lions, but these are sorting orders that do not create entire privileged classes or ranks or a chain of command.</p><p>Consequently, animal societies are egalitarian. Even the queen bee or the termite queen does not hold a position of command: she is simply the reproductive organ of the colony and neither gives orders nor follows anyone else’s.</p></blockquote><p>If anarchism is the natural pattern for life on earth, as Orlov asserts, why are most contemporary human societies organized otherwise? According to Orlov:</p><blockquote><p>Glimmers of anarchism could be discerned going as far back as the Reformation, in movements seeking autonomy, decentralization, and independence from central governments. But eventually virtually all of them were drowned out by socialist and communist revolutionary movements, which strove to renegotiate the social contract so as to distribute the fruits of industrial production more equitably among the working class. In all the developed countries, the working class was eventually able to secure gains such as the right to unionize, strike and bargain collectively, public education, a regulated work-week, government-guaranteed pensions and disability compensation schemes, government-provided health care and so on—all in exchange for submitting to the hierarchical control system of a centralized industrial state. Anarchist thought could gain no purchase within such a political climate, where the rewards of submitting to an official hierarchy were so compelling. But now the industrial experiment is nearing its end…</p></blockquote><p>Setting aside for a moment the facts that examples of anarchist societies go back further than the Reformation, and that more recent examples (such as among indigenous people in the Americas) were damaged or destroyed by colonial and imperial powers, Orlov’s thesis is intriguing. If people are more or less willing to submit to hierarchical authority when it distributes resources a little more equitably than laissez faire capitalism, what happens when the hierarchy no longer throws a few bones our way?</p><p>Frances Fox Piven and Richard Cloward demonstrate in their classic text <a href=" People’s Movements</a> that opportunities for popular insurgencies to emerge are relatively rare and usually coincide with “profound changes in the larger society” (p7). The decline of industrial society and impending collapse of global capitalism is, and will continue to, produce social dislocation and misery, but this rupture with the past also creates the space to build something new; perhaps something more equitable? More freeing? More caring? After all, industrial society produced its own forms of misery: boredom, conformity, stifling of creativity, and alienation to name a few.</p><p>“We can only hope,” Orlov writes,"that, with the waning of the industrial age, anarchism is poised for a rebirth, gaining relevance and acceptance among those wishing to opt out of the industrial scheme ahead of time instead of finding themselves pinned down under its wreckage." I can’t wait to read what he has to say in Part III next week.</p>


Hey ya'll, the “peak oil” people finally showed up!

and they're on our side!


I know. I hate it when people are on our side. Why can't we go back to the good old days of being an ineffectual minority of Bohemian college kids in the back corners of all ages punk venues? This whole "inclusiveness" thing is really cramping my style.

Orlov is more of a "collapse" guy than peak oil in particular. Civilizations collapse, that's just a fact, and this one is hitting a serious crisis. So you can either respond to it, or get rounded up by fascists in a few years.

There are probably more preppers than there are anarchists, and they have a ton of resources and connections, so they can either be on our side or not. They want what we've got and the only question is if we're going to be assholes to them (like usual).

Or you can uncritically collaborate with "preppers" thinking they're on your side, only to later find yourself in the midst of a neofeudal cult, aka the fascist themselves.

My flip comment above was meant more in jest, not to deny the inevitable. It is crucial that anarchists autonomously develop their own defuse support systems and, hopefully one day, make themselves independent from the now collapsing capitalist system. If a serious crisis is presenting opportunities, than perhaps this situation should not be feared as much as embraced.

I sometimes feel anarcho capitalism is our inevitable fate. Not the autonomist theoretical reorganization of society but the neo liberal nightmare that plagues third world will be you and I starving in the streets at gunpoint.

C'mon cheer up! I can understand your concern, but let's start planning now some alternative food sources. Neccessity is the mother, not capitalist supermarkets.

This is odd....the writer of this article, Katherine Acosta, has links on the side of her blog to other blogs she likes.

She likes Paul Craig Roberts, the right-wing, Pat Buchanan style writer who is heavily featured on Alex Jones, Ron Paul, Stormfront, and other Paleoconservative and far-right libertarian websites.

Right Winger Paul Craig Roberts is featured quite alot in American Free Press, another far right/9-11 truther style newspaper/website. He was published by AK Press, which there was trouble over why they published his book. Not a big surprise if you know AK Press really well, considering they mostly publish non-anarchist and anti-anarchist writers.

Eww, stormfront? Eww....

that was the point genius ...

Orlov and Acosta have interesting insights, but their analysis is stuck in the Fiktional‘what things-in-themselves do’ view of the world dynamic; e.g.

“... We can only hope .... anarchism is poised for a rebirth, gaining relevance and acceptance among those wishing to opt out of the industrial scheme.”

The fact is that ‘anarchism’ doesn’t need a rebirth by way of “gaining relevance and acceptance”. [an intellectual activity] since it is only theories of how to behave that pass through the individual intellect and drive behaviour deliberately that can ‘gain relevance and acceptance’.

The ‘anarchism’ of the indigenous aboriginals of Turtle Island was and is a natural form of organizing wherein the inside-outward asserting of the individual is shaped/organized by the outside-inward orchestrating influence of the community/habitat-dynamic he is situationally included in.

When people are given theories to conform to, their behaviour is no longer in a conjugate outside-inward --- inside-outward spatial-relational balance but becomes one-sidedly driven from out of their intellect. Whatever situation they are in, such as cop in a crowd, the voice in their head which is programming their behaviour rises to primacy over the orchestrating influence of their habitat-dynamic they are situationally included in. E.g. a cop or a soldier or a tax collector or a evictions bailiff or a tarsands etc. producer, following orders associated with theory/plans that come through their intellect and drive their behaviours in a manner that ignores the outside-inward orchestrating influence coming from the community/habitat dynamic they are situationally included in.

The expression ‘tread lightly’ means to let your asserting behaviour be sensitively shaped by the dynamics of the habitat you are situationally included in. When this manifests in a group of people, whether in the flow of the freeway or in the flow of life’s freeway in general, a harmonious flow is sustained. On the other hand, when the programs in people’s personal intellect one-sidedly drive their behaviours, there is much conflict and the response to this conflict, INSTEAD OF RETURNING TO 'TREAD LIGHTLY', is in Western civilization, to push forward and bolster the one-sided, intellectually-driven behaviour by increasing one’s own one-sided asserting power and invulnerability relative to the others; i.e. upgrade from a motorcycle to a semi-trailer or tank [and mount a few guns on it], or, on the scale of nations, if the voice in your administration’s intellectualizing head is informing its behaviour, one-sidedly, to build a massive military and huge defensive walls to facilitate a one-sided intellectually driven 'keeping everything out there moving in the manner it should be moving' [according to one's own intellectual plan/theory].

The judgement of ‘good’ and ‘evil’ is the classic source of one-sided intellect-driven behaviour in Western civilization, and it drives the behaviour in a manner that is insensitive to the outside-inward orchestrating influence. It is what justifies the cop in bashing and battering protestors after they have been ordered to leave; i.e. behaviour is defined as ‘evil’ that violates the laws of the [God-blessed] sovereign state. This one-sided intellectually driving assertive behaviour based on ‘morality’ happens on the scale of nations as well; e.g;

“So I reject the notion that the American moment has passed. I dismiss the cynics who say that this new century cannot be another when, in the words of President Franklin Roosevelt, we lead the world in battling immediate evils and promoting the ultimate good. I still believe that America is the last, best hope of Earth. We just have to show the world why this is so.” ---Barack Obama, Remarks to the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, April 23, 2007

When one’s assertive actions, or the assertive actions of a human sovereign state collective are being driven by intellectual moral judgement, rather than the quest to cultivate, restore and sustain balance and harmony in the web of relations that constitutes the world dynamic, ... we have a good demonstration of what is not ‘anarchism’.

Intellectually driven assertive behaviour that is insensitive to the outside-inward orchestrating influence of the habitat-dynamic it is situationally included in, characterizes political theory motivated behaviour, and hierarchies in general [where each person is acting of their ‘position’ in the greater, hierarchical scheme of things].

There is no ‘tread lightly’ ethic here, there is instead a ‘speak softly and carry a big stick’ ethic because the intellectual plan that is the voice in the head of the individual/state that is one-sidedly directing its behaviour is going to prevail regardless of the orchestrating influence of the habitat dynamic it is situationally included in. If the boss’s voice is talking to the semi driver from inside his head telling him that the shipment has to get from Dallas to LA by the next morning, ... look out smart cars, motorcycles etc and forget about the sustaining of harmonious freeway flow. [it is not hard to see the disaster when everyone in the flow of the freeway is letting the intellectual voice in their head one-sidedly drive their behaviour, that is the mess that our current Western civilization, intellectual theory-deifying 'freeway of life' is in currently]

So, Orlov and Acosta’s ‘hope that’“... anarchism is poised for a rebirth, gaining relevance and acceptance among those wishing to opt out of the industrial scheme.”

... FALSELY implies that ‘anarchism’ is an ‘intellectual theory’ that guides one’s behaviour ‘through the intellect’. There is an implication that 'anarchy is the good way to go' while 'hierarchy is the bad way to go' i.e. as if these are competing intellectual theories.

if we are talking about natural anarchy, as it appears we are with the references to how nature works, ‘anarchy’ is where behaviour is relationally-spatially sensitive; i.e. sensitive to the orchestrating influence of particular spatial relations as are continuously, situationally arising. That is where ‘tread lightly’ derives from and it is where sustained harmonious freeway flow derives from. IT DOES NOT COME THROUGH THE INTELLECT, IT COMES THROUGH DIRECT EXPERIENCE; I.E. THROUGH RELATIONALLY SENSITIVE SPATIAL EXPERIENCE. in fact, the intellect, the voice in the head that is directing behaviour, has to ‘let go’, take a secondary support role and allow the outside-inward spatial-relational [situational] orchestrating influence partially shape one’s behaviour. this differs from driving one’s behaviour one-sidedly through moral righteousness; ‘i own this freeway lane and i will use it according to my own intellectual plans/purpose’ or ‘i own this property and i will use it according to my own intellectual plans/purpose’ etc. etc.

the anarchy that one observes in nature that manifests as amazingly coherent order even in the complexity of a diverse multiplicity of participants as in the earth-ecosphere, is not driven through the intellect of the participants, it derives from sensitive experiential awareness to one’s unfolding situation within the continually transforming relational space we share inclusion in. i.e. the order in anarchy comes from the participants in the freeway flow letting their behaviours be orchestrated by the relational openings that arise, which their movements are co-creatively shaping. In other words, by remaining aware of, and sensitively responsive to the fact that the individual is situationally included in a continually transforming web of spatial relations.

anarchy in nature restores ‘the banished female’, the ‘non-rational’ sensitivity to the unfolding relational situation. this ‘sensitivity’ is not like a marxist-or-etc. intellectual theory, the voice-in-the-head that drives peoples behaviour, too often exclusively, from the inside-outward.

we don’t have to study it [anarchism] and/or come to some common agreement on ‘what it is’, all we have to do for it to ‘rise to the fore’ is to ‘let go’ of our habitat of giving the upper hand to listening to, and letting the voices in our head [our intellectual theories] one-sidedly dictate our behaviour, and instead, stay in touch with our real-life physical situational-relational experience, acknowledging/accepting [to the point of sustaining balance and harmony] the orchestrating influence of the habitat dynamic we share inclusion in, and are relationally co-forming.

Okay, but all this has got absolutely noting to do with the fact that you are a self-absorbed, intellectual egomaniac, Emile.

Didja went to Cambridge too? lol

it’s more to the point that people who can only engage in discussions by not-engaging and instead firing volleys of adhominems wherever the views expressed differ with their own since ‘they could not possibly err in their intellectual judgements’, are ‘self-absorbed, intellectual egomaniacs.’

you would get more intellectual responses to your postings emile if they were accessible in any way. the academic word vomit you eject isn't meant to relate or dialogue with others is it? if that were your desire you would take all those fancy ideas you emote and express them more simply. you are halfway to mastery- someone who really understands an idea is able to express it without so much expensive specialized language.

sharing understanding in the context of relational space requires a more complicated language, than sharing understanding in the standard 'absolute space' terms. the reader who is not prepared to accept the more complicated language is not prepared to leave the absolute space and absolute time 'Euclidian-flatspace' he bases his over-simplistic 'what things-in-themselves do' understandings in.

“Finally, our Euclidean geometry is itself only a sort of convention of language; mechanical facts might be enunciated with reference to a non-Euclidean space which would be a guide less convenient than, but just as legitimate as, our ordinary space ; the enunciation would thus become much more complicated, but it would remain possible. Thus absolute space, absolute time, geometry itself, are not conditions which impose themselves on mechanics ; all these things are no more antecedent to mechanics than the French language is logically antecedent to the verities one expresses in French.” – Henri Poincare, Science and Hypothesis

if the only way to struggle involves a wide spread understanding of non-Euclidean space-(and i don't actually think you have made that case well) but if you really really feel that way--- then you should get better at fucking explaining it.

how would you know how good i am at explaining ‘relational space’ since you evidently are not understanding it, or else you pretend not to understand it, whereas many people clearly do. do you feel this is ‘the fault of my writing’ that you ‘don’t understand’?

and let’s call it relational space as Mach did, rather than non-Euclidian space because we all ‘know how relational space works’; it is the general case in our physical experience, ... it is just that our standard, over-simplified articulations of dynamics in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do’ does not accommodate it.

in our standard mode of discourse, one may say; “at 9 p.m Tuesday evening, i saw a rock roll down this mountain. and one may ask; “Is this the truth, the full truth and nothing but the truth, so help you God? and we will answer ‘yes’ and that answer will be accepted. however, a geologist may testify that this terrain is undergoing a continual relational transformation and that description in terms of ‘what a thing-in-itself does’, is incapable of capturing the actual physical phenomenon; i.e. the continuing transformation of spatial relations.

by the same token, one may say; “at 9 p.m. Tuesday evening, i saw a man wearing a black mask smash the windows in the bank on main street. and one may ask; “Is this the truth, the full truth and nothing but the truth, so help you God? and the response will be ‘yes’ and that answer will be accepted. however, an anthropologist may testify that the social space is undergoing a continual relational transformation and that description in terms of ‘what a man-as-thing-in-himself does’ is incapable of capturing the actual physical phenomenon; i.e. the continuing transformation of relations in the living space.

talk that is in terms of ‘people/things and what they do’ does not mention that they are included in spatial-relational dynamics even though they are. yet our standard discourse is in terms of ‘people seen as ‘things-in-themselves’ and ‘what they do’. social theory is based on ‘what people do’ and ‘their methods of organization’ as if space were a non-participant, as our experience informs us it clearly is. as Mach describes it; “the dynamics of the inhabitants are conditioning the dynamics of the habitat at the same time as the dynamics of the habitat are conditioning the dynamics of the inhabitants”.

in terms of simple analogies, our standard discourse assumes that space is a non-participant [non-relationals, or ‘euclidian’] which presents us as ‘power-boaters’ whose behaviour is fully and solely attributable to our internal processes [the ‘stuff’ we are made of]. relational space sees us as ‘sailboaters’ who derive our power and steerage from the dynamics of the space we are situationally included in.

over-bearing is a sailing term which suggests that sailing performance is subject to Mach’s relational space principle. does this ring any bells with our ‘real-life experience’?

“ Picture yourself in a boat that is in fullblown motion. The wind is behind you, you’ve got momentum and speed. Then another boat navigates in such a way where they actually steal your wind. Very quickly you go from momentum and speed to being dead in the water – just floating there knowing that it’s going to take a heck of a lot of work to get back the momentum you just lost.”

furthermore, as john locke suggested, the invention of money makes wages and paid labour possible so that one man could hang a lot more canvas than others and become even more overbearing.

just how well does our standard discourse in the non-relational space terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do’ capture our real-life experience?


1a. In the 1490’s European colonizers began the construction of a wonderful new world in North America. True or false?

1b. In the 1490’s, European colonizers began the destruction of a wonderful established world on Turtle Island. True or false?

This is Zinn’s ‘executioner-victim’ paradox associated with expressing dynamics in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do’ which, as in the example of the rock rolling down the mountain, focuses one-sidedly on the ‘cause-effect view which can either be ‘constructive’ or ‘destructive’. however, these are psychological perspectives and the real phenomenon is the continuing transformation of a relational space.

e.g. an archeologist will testify that the living space on the North American continent (as in the earth’s eco-sphere) has been continually transforming with the arrival/emergence of new and different species and civilizations. According to his testimony, descriptions in terms of ‘what particular things-in-themselves do’ is incapable of capturing the actual physical phenomenon; i.e. the continuing transformation of a relational space.

as mcluhan also [besides mach] said, ‘what things do’ matters little [whether we are making cadillacs or smashing pumpkins], what matters [i.e. the physical reality] is how our relations with one another and the living space are transforming.

Relational Space 101 Quiz


1. The witness testifies, after swearing to ‘tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth so help me God’, ... “I saw the accused, who was wearing a black mask that was pulled off in a scuffle, smash the windows in the bank on the corner of main and elm at 9 p.m. Tuesday evening”. Which is the physical reality; (a) the dynamic as described; i.e. in the standard terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do’ and accept as ‘the full truth’, or (b) the transformation of our relations with one another and the common living space?

2. The colonizers described their actions as (a) ‘the construction of a new housing development. The indigenous aboriginals described the same actions as (b) ‘the destruction of a forest’. Which of these actions (a) or (b) best captures the described dynamic?

. * * *

In relational space, there is no such thing as ‘opposites’ such as ‘construction’ and ‘destruction’ or ‘true’ and ‘false’ or ‘growth’ and ‘shrinkage’ or ‘good’ and ‘evil’, there is only relational transformation. sharing understanding that is relational requires a different ‘language game’. many if not most people insist on the standard ‘what thing-in-themselves do’ language game. if you think my approach to relational space communications is lacking, why not critique it and show me the better way?

Anarchism gonna have a hard time of it especially with the increase in the percentage of psychic cops going through the paranormal classes at the academy. These people can read your ideas in public places, scary!

Orlov is scientifically accurate most of the time, and one thing about science is that it obsesses about physics and economics but knows very little about social relationships, take Marx for example, he crunched the numbers and came up with a reasonable critique of capitalism, but that's all, his blueprint for society was arranged as a control grid on a factory floor! Orlov has inherited the last glimmers of this vision in his interpretation of what 'anarchy' is. However this statement I asume by by Katherine Acosta as her introductory theme is very vague--

"Anarchist thinking appears to be gaining relevance and acceptance among a larger audience."

Relevance is one of those words which don't explain or define anything in particular. An analogy can be relevant yet entirely different in context to the subject, it is merely a method of introducing a sympathetic theme to a topic, it is not substantial, but it is relevant. For example, "the analogy of a deteriorating bridge". There are too many analogists and not enough original thinkers!!!
We all know Social Darwinism is a fallacious term, it's Spencerism. That's old, like animal societies are egalitarian, gasp! Can we move on out of the 60's please!!

This is REALLY fucking primmie!

"The decline of industrial society and impending collapse of global capitalism is, and will continue to, produce social dislocation and misery, but this rupture with the past also creates the space to build something new; perhaps something more equitable? More freeing? More caring? After all, industrial society produced its own forms of misery: boredom, conformity, stifling of creativity, and alienation to name a few."

Well so much for the analogy of a collapsing fucking bridge! Global capitalism is booming! Don't let so called totalitarian ideological handles deceive you, China is a capitalist nation, as was the former Soviet state. C'mon, open your eyes! Anarchism is in danger of becoming obsolete from the pressure of dominance that the new world order is enforcing globally. There are going to be continuing mass extinctions not only of animals but of individuals and their freedoms.

Anarchy from nature is Orlov's premise, and in one way he is accurate, only a natural global apocalypse can cleanse this sinful earth of its religious and political stagnation!!!

“Well so much for the analogy of a collapsing fucking bridge! Global capitalism is booming!”

anon 08:02, who wrote the above, is bypassing a lot of points that acosta is [implicitly] incorporating into her analysis, not the least of which is that capitalism is undergoing a ‘boom-and-bust’ punctuated equilibrium that appears to be worsening and signifying ‘implosion’.

that is, capitalism’s quest for endless growth is sucking the living juices out of itself. the financial traders ‘buy low’, drive the economy to an artificially bloated state [on paper] and ‘sell high’, bursting the artificial bubble so that what was taken out by the cashing in of inflated paper is paid for in worker debt amortized by years of hard labour. since the workers are the core of the economy, the economy is ‘sucking the blood out of itself’.

the situation in greece is looking like a harbinger of what is going to happen generally in the world, as the vampiric actions of financial trading on real labour continues, and you say, simply; “Global capitalism is booming!”!?!

you further say;

“This is REALLY fucking primmie!

    "The decline of industrial society and impending collapse of global capitalism is, and will continue to, produce social dislocation and misery, but this rupture with the past also creates the space to build something new; perhaps something more equitable? More freeing? More caring? After all, industrial society produced its own forms of misery: boredom, conformity, stifling of creativity, and alienation to name a few."

C'mon, open your eyes! Anarchism is in danger of becoming obsolete from the pressure of dominance that the new world order is enforcing globally. .... only a natural global apocalypse can cleanse this sinful earth of its religious and political stagnation!!!”

Acosta evidently sees change in the same manner as McLuhan; i.e. what matters is NOT ‘what we do’ but rather how our relations with one another and our common living space dynamic are transforming [the transforming relational medium is the message]. ‘Construction’ and ‘destruction’ are conjugate aspects of the one dynamic, ‘transformation’ of the relational space we live in; e.g. construction of a housing development is at the same time the destruction of a forest, ... construction of an industrial empire is at the same time the destruction of a freely-associating social ecology, ... and, ... ‘destruction [by implosive collapse] of a financial empire is at the same time, construction of [we get to fill in the blanks, as Acosta suggests].

Your comment “pressure of dominance that the new world order is enforcing globally” that you suggest is correlate with your assumed “booming of capitalism” confuses what is currently going on.

‘Capitalism’ is the global economic system and it is not ‘the enforcer’. The enforcer is ‘corporatism’ which is the bolting together of sovereign state governance [backed by police and military] with corporations that makes us all equal in the eyes of the law; e.g. Monsanto corporation and John Q. Farmer are equals in the eyes of the law. Corporatism [aka ‘fascism’] is the ‘lid’ on the simmering pot, the weakening of which is accompanied by the pregnant potentials of a new order rising to the boil, call it ‘Arab Spring’ or whatever. So which new order are we ‘in store for’?

If all goes well with the global economy, that bodes well for Corporatism as the masses in the pot are less likely to be ‘rising to the boil’ if living conditions in the sovereign pens are reasonable. If the global economy falters, then all the pillow-talk in the world between presidents and CEOs is not going to keep a lid on things.

And many would argue that the increasing frequency of boom-and-bust cycles constitutes the ‘death rattle’ of the capitalist economy since the notion of endless growth that it fixates on has been exacerbating its auto-vampiric character and thus its continuing practice of sucking the blood out of itself is headed for a convulsive implosion at which point many if not most of the 193 corporatist lids are going weaken their [essentially 'belief-based'] hold on the 193 corporatist pots and we will undergo a global ‘boil up’ of a ‘new order’ that is not the one you seem to be ‘betting on’.

I'll be succint,,,you should try it?! It's a finite material globe and only technologies evolve exponentially to extract dwindling resources. Solar power is sustainable, smallness and efficiency of lifestyle enables capitalists to push the parameters further, they invest in solar power. There is not going to be a civilization crash because using the analogy of 'China prospers despite overwhelming population', thus, n o further explanation required.

we need someone with more charisma than Chomsky to do our PR! Someone like Churchill or Hitler. Then we anarchists can rule the world!!

Add new comment

Filtered HTML

  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.
Enter the code without spaces.