Anarchy- noun- absence of government and absolute freedom of the individual, regarded as a political ideal.
In this blog post I will give a brief history of Anarchism, uncover some myths about Anarchism, and talk about why I am an Anarchist.
Most anthropologists agree that humans lived for thousands of years self-governing within tribes without any type of political powers to govern these societies. After the rise of hierarchical forces came into most societies that the anarchist principle came about as a response to resist against any coercive political institutions. Modern Anarchism comes from the secular or religious thought of enlightenment. William Godwin came up with the first modern though of anarchism during the 1790s in the wake of the French Revolution. Godwin argued that government has an inherently malevolent influence on society, and that it perpetuates dependency and ignorance.
Anarchism has a casual association with chaos and violence while this is not the case. Breaking the word down literally you have “archy” which means “rule” and “a” which means “lack of.” Anarchy does mean chaos, but without authority. Unless of course you believe that chaos and violence is avoided when under authority (but as you can see through history, that is simply not true). Authority exists in all facets of society, and their legitimacy should be challenged and removed. Anarchism is the attitude of identifying authority and working on increasing human freedom by removal of that coercive power.
Another myth being that anarchists are terrorists. It is true that some anarchists do choose to set off bombs, and what not. The reality is that true anarchism is non-violent. Anarchists (mostly anarcho-capitalists) believe in what is called the NAP or Non-Aggression Principle. In short, this principle is an ethical stance that asserts violence and aggression as inherently illegitimate. Anarchism challenges the notion of terrorism.
In my last article, “Question Everything” I spake about my ideology journey from staunch conservatism to Anarchism. To be more specific, I am an anarcho-capitalist (also called a Free Market Anarchist). Anarcho-capitalism recognizes the uselessness of the State and chooses to have services that are provided by the State privately funded (Google Voluntaryism). The difference between this form of anarchism and others is most anarchist ideologies is most anarchists do not believe that capitalism is truly free (i.e. Anarcho-communism, anarcho-syndicalism, et cetera) In layman’s terms, anarcho-capitalism suggests that if I choose to make a product/service and sell it, I have a right to. If another person chooses to make the same product/service and challenge me with better price/quality, then they have the right to do so. The economy is based on this competition of businesses, and is truly fair competition unlike the “free market” we have in our crony capitalist market we have in the US today. We believe that the Black Market is the only true free market. No government interference in buying property, and things like guns, drugs, and sex (voluntary prostitution, not sex-slaves. Remember what I said about coercion) should all be free to be sold.
By now you think I am crazy. Personally, I find things like drugs, prostitution, homosexuality as wrong (as I am a Christian). But I do believe that it is not up to me, any person, or any system that should be able to tell a person otherwise.
In other words… Buy what you want, do what you want, just do not come in my yard.
Peace, love, empathy,
Stephen Michael Langlais