I find myself in agreement with the Socialism/Anarchism/Communism Facebook page very often, being a Libertarian Marxist/Luxemburgist myself. This description of their Libertarian Marxism is generally what I also think should happen in a broader context of anti-capitalist transformation, left unity, and the transition to socialism.
One of the central reasons why attempts at socialism have given rise to state capitalism and concentrated power has to do with the fact that these attempts were situated in countries that had not gone through analogous stages of late capitalism to build up their infrastructures, alongside the attempts being actively sabotaged by capitalist powers. If you’re on the cusp of feudalism and early capitalism as Russia was, for example, it’s understandable that a revolution focused at socialism would instead devolve into a scenario where the the state takes over the means of production and assumes the functions of capital, all so that infrastructure can be built up to de facto post-scarcity late capitalism and attempts at socialism can be handled far more adeptly. (I still argue that a mutualist or market socialist setup is a better mechanism to both build up infrastructure (since, structurally, you still have the analogous production-for-profit, markets, and competition that are also found in capitalism) and to train/prepare people for full production-for-need socialism through a flatter base, alongside the fact that the fruits from surplus labor value wouldn’t go to an isolated owner/bureaucrat class and could instead be managed by the people themselves – hell, it would probably be a faster process to reach a point of general post-scarcity, since you cut out the capitalist middlemen and instead get to see the benefits more universally realized. Dialectically, it could fulfill the need for liberalism before socialism; humanistically, it would result in far less oppression, poverty, and death. But I digress.) Ultimately, state capitalism and concentrated power do not lay the groundwork for an eventual scenario where the state could wither away; there would in effect need to be a true socialist revolution to transition out of state capitalism and its analogous “bourgeois epoch".
If a state is to exist at all in a post-capitalist world, it should be there to help ease and defend the transition, and it should not take over the functions of capital nor suppress attempts at anarchist/autonomous organization. If the state is to ever wither away, the economic base it reinforces must be as horizontal as possible – that’s where direct democratic worker councils come into play; if infrastructure still needs to be built up through an analogous liberal system, then mutualism or market socialism should take precedent (and from there, a transition to for-need socialism could be relatively smooth). Either way, a classless economic base – whether it be in production-for-need socialism or in production-for-profit mutualism – is an indispensable prerequisite for a scenario where the state can actually wither away, as opposed to a scenario where the forceful rupture of power by the people is still necessary (as it would be if the state reinforced a vertical economic base in a state capitalist context).
Every being in the universe
is an expression of the Tao.
It springs into existence,
unconscious, perfect, free,
takes on a physical body,
lets circumstances complete it.
That is why every being
spontaneously honors the Tao.
The Tao gives birth to all beings,
nourishes them, maintains them,
cares for them, comforts them, protects them,
takes them back to itself,
creating without possessing,
acting without expecting,
guiding without interfering.
That is why love of the Tao
is in the very nature of things.
Lao Tzu - (Tao Te Ching, chapter 51, translation by Stephen Mitchell)
Let’s Talk Free Will
On Thursday of last week, in my
commentary on chapter 49, I compared Thomas Jefferson’s idea of
equality (that we are all endowed with the same natural, inalienable
rights) with Lao Tzu’s idea of equality (that we shouldn’t make
distinctions, instead treating everyone the same). In today’s
chapter, Lao Tzu teaches about what is in the very nature of every
In Stephen Mitchell’s
interpretation, Lao Tzu doesn’t even make distinctions between
different and diverse beings; saying, every being in the universe is
an expression of the Tao.
Each springs into existence perfect
and free. Though they enter this existence unconscious of their
perfection and freedom, they take on a physical body and let
circumstances complete them. In other words, letting circumstances
complete us is as natural to us as taking on our physical bodies.
Lao Tzu says the Tao gives birth to
all beings. He doesn’t mean this in a literal sense. He means it
metaphorically. This is the way things are in our universe. We are
nature’s creation. And, as we harmonize with nature, it nourishes
us, maintains us, cares for us, comforts us, protects us; and, in the
end, takes us back to itself.
Now, some might argue, “Where is the
freedom in any of this? Do we even have a choice in the matter?
But, of course, Lao Tzu talks about
this all of the time. He talks about going against the current of the
Tao. Of not being in harmony with it. Of having forgotten it. So, do
we really have free will? Of course, we do. And, we exercise it all
of the time. Whenever we act according to our nature, and when we
The Tao isn’t a tyrant. It creates
without possessing. It acts without expecting. It guides without
Those aren’t the actions of a
What it is, instead, is love. Not a
subjective love, which makes distinctions. But an objective love. The
love of the Tao is in the very nature of things.
But, that means the love of the Tao is
also in our very nature. The more you harmonize with it, the more you
love it; and, the more you love all expressions of the Tao, your
fellow beings in the universe.
You are free to choose. You can choose
not to love. But, that goes against your very nature. And, when you
choose to go against your nature, with nature itself, you can expect
there to be dire consequences. Freedom always comes with
You are free to choose. So, choose
wisely. Choose love.
Can you explain what the alt-right is if not by definition a contrariness group which likes to make jokes of dire and worldly situations? I'd like to hear a definition that isn't just "neo-nazi". Thanks
the alt right is an amalgamation of ideologies from the right end of the political spectrum, most being right-leaning libertarian but also monarchists, right-fash, and any other ism and ist you can think of.
All united for the first time under one candidate and banner, and rising up against the left and neocons that have had a death grip on the american economy and politics, selling our economic and industrial future to the lowest bidder and destroying the US constitution and all the rights it guarantees in the name of “safety”.
Thats only scratching the surface and my interpretation.
Look, I understand if Gary Johnson isn’t libertarian enough for you. I’m sorry. I understand if you opt out of voting completely.
But if you claim to care deeply about liberty (especially while complaining about Johnson not being libertarian enough, or even while not) and in the same paragraph you are telling me you “need” to vote for one of the two major candidates to stop the other?
You’re part of the problem.
I’ll say it again.
You’re part of the problem.
This sums up so many thoughts of mine. I need not say anymore.
I had Bernie’s book checked out from the library and left it on the couch after I finished reading it; I know it needs to go back but I still have another week and am super lazy. Well my dad got bored a few days back and admitted to me he’s been reading it! And now he’s changed his mind and is going to vote for Bernie in the primary!
So that’s both parents I’ve converted now: Mom from being a Hillary supporter and Dad from being a libertarian who doesn’t vote.
If I can do it, you can do it too! Talk to your parents about Bernie and make sure you leave stuff around the house for them to read! My dad was stubborn and very skeptical when I tried to talk to him about Bernie but when he read Bernie’s own words he changed his mind.
So, context to this: I was on the gamefaqs message boards a lot, years ago. The board I frequented had a lot of users that ended up being weird libertarians, because Gamefaqs. Anyway, a friend of mine found one user’s twitter, and it has the funniest thing I’ve ever laid eyes on. It never fails to cheer me up.
So out of curiosity, how to anarchists account for situations of child abuse or neglect?
Being libertarian, I would chalk up one of the few functions of government to protect its citizens, which would include investigating cases of child endangerment.
How would this issue be addressed in an anarchic society?
Being a libertarian is honestly pretty damn hard. You have conservatives thinking you’re “just another liberal” because you believe people should have the right to bodily autonomy, and you have liberals thinking you’re the scum of the earth because you don’t believe college should be free.