Anarchist Ramblings & Other Hopeless Socio-Political Aspirations
By D.S. Woodman
The word Anarchy finds its origins in the Greek language, stemming from a combination of two root words; An (without) and Arkhos (head, leader, ruler). Anarchy should be considered a few notches farther “right” on the political spectrum than traditional American Conservatism. However, this comparison may leave the uninformed under the impression that Anarchy contains all of the political dogma present in the Western, or more specifically, American views on a “Right-Winged” politics. This is simply not the case. The way in which I use the term “Right” refers simply to the ideal that government should be less involved in the majority personal/business affairs. The reason for my choosing to describe Anarchy as being seated one notch farther to the right, than the right, is due the fact that Anarchists do not respect government or state as a legitimate force, in any context. In the formation of the Anarchist Party, the concepts described apply strictly to political values, as opposed to the moral/religious ideologies often associated with any given political view in the US. For example, the GOP often identifies as Christian, and adopts moral values commonly associated with Christianity.
The lack of association with moral ideology or religious views seen in Anarchy is most likely due to the inherent incapability of adopting such belief systems, due to the fact that true Anarchy adheres to an inherent respect for differences in values and beliefs amongst individuals. It is my belief that mixing these two very separate (and righteously so) aspects of a society (church and state) is not only highly immoral, but also contradictory. How can a nation, founded on so-called “religious freedom,” be so hypocritical to apply religious aspects to its secular government and structure? It is important to understand that the founders of our country were not as Christian as the history books would have us believe. But that is indeed a story for another time. Anarchy respects the idea that there will always be fundamental differences in values amongst any peoples, and fundamentally enforces respect for the individual’s ability to believe and express his or her own thoughts and opinions without any interference from the state. Justice is merely an idea, as are rights. Both of these concepts, in an Anarchist community, are ideas that must be upheld by those choosing to submit themselves to them.
An important thing to remember is that true Anarchy (not the offspring of Anarchy applied to the so called political terrorists and even the punk bands of the 60’s and 70’s) is a direct threat to any political structure. Therefor, the mainstream media, which is simply an extension of the state, finds means of using propaganda to subtly persuade the public opinion towards believing a number of concepts which are often either subjective opinions or blatant lies, as indisputable facts. This is true for Anarchy. Most of us shudder at the thought of Anarchy alone. Almost automatically, images of Molotov cocktails, angry mobs with torches and pitchforks, and maybe even the flipping of cars in city streets, flash through the minds of the uninformed when the word is spoken. During the 60’s and 70’s, the majority of American people were successfully persuaded and most became uncomfortable with even the word itself. This is not all that dissimilar from the way that communism was viewed by Americans. It is felt to be a direct threat to you and your family. However, a much more accurate and realistic definition of Anarchy is simply “without regard for the state or leadership, whether by disestablishment or total disregard.” Violence is not required for Anarchy. Anarchy’s lack of concern for what others say or do is one of its most attractive features in my opinion. Anarchists understand that contrary to what modern society would like you to believe, morality is subjective; therefor neither the state, nor any other sovereign entity can “righteously” impose any form of morality, which is in fact subjective whether you like it or not, upon anyone else, in even the slightest of ways.
Do we need the state? Are we as humans truly defendant on others “more capable” than we are? Are we reliant upon the alpha?
As history has shown us, very few forms of power prove to be ultimately beneficial to the people. It is important to understand the fact that wherever there is power, there is corruption, in some form. Obviously abuse of ones power occurs on a spectrum of severity and in a number of forms, but it does, almost always, occur. To collectively hand over the power (money/time/support) we do have for ourselves, to fewer and fewer individuals over time, through the idealistic pyramid scheme that is our global economy, is to literally bend over and beg to be fucked just a little bit harder. We are actively and voluntarily disempowering ourselves by giving away our collective power, individually, and by submitting to the coercive forces of the state.
Even governing entities initially intended for the benefit of it’s people, eventually (and inevitably) devolve into a primal feeding frenzy of self-empowerment and disregard for humanity, until it is eventually deconstructed by the people under it’s rule. However this is simply meaningless. Perhaps things will be different for the lifetime of those who engage in the removal of those in power, but the system itself is still in tact. We continue to give the power back to people who we think will have our best interest in mind. It’s the system that is the problem. It is setup so that the few in power benefit from the suffering of the majority of us, who are not. After any number of generations, the new order put in place, will inevitably decline towards it’s natural, homeostatic position, to serve the agendas of the rich, the ruling class, with only enough regard for the rest of us to keep us from revolting. This is a natural consequence of capitalism, and ironically, capitalism is simply a product of the state. It is absurd to me, actually its enraging to imagine that we have been born into a world without the ability to choose whether or not we wish to partake in a way of living, which requires a man to sacrifice most of his time and energy in exchange for otherwise worthless paper notes. Hopefully his long days and sleepless nights will be enough to feed his children the following week. Why not spend that same amount of time and energy, most likely less, on your own property, with your own family, building up your own castle, providing for your family while bypassing the meaningless paper dollars. This, in my opinion is simply madness. When the common individual exists only to serve an agenda of gluttony, it is often an omen for a soon-to-come structural collapse. A few interesting symptoms often present themselves when a society no longer has control over their own lives. In today’s America, a host of terrible and unusual societal imbalances are apparent. History has proven time and time again that more often than not, the expansion of a state results in:
-The common people gradually become almost entirely dependent on the state for survival
-More illness amongst the middle and lower classes
-More mental health problems across the board
-More patriotism promoted, but less actually observed
-Less ecological sustainability
One key concept to point out is that An-Anarchos, in its original Greek form, means “without rulers” not without rule or without rules. This is key. Do not mistake Anarchy with anything but personal freedom of choice. In an Anarchist society, the people are able to establish means of accountability and justice, as can be seen in the Aboriginal tribes of Australia or the Shamanic peoples of South America. Anarchy is not opposed to the people choosing a leader. Anarchy is in opposition to the concept of an established State or Government, tax, enforced by coercion and the threat of violence. “How is the state today coercive?” you might ask. Well, for example, everything required of you by the state is done so at gunpoint! Don’t want to pay taxes to support a group of violent slobs, or those feeding off the welfare state? Too bad! If you don’t, men with guns will come to your home, where you wife and children sleep at night, bust down your front door, take you away! Obviously I cannot go into all of the examples because I wouldn’t finish within this lifetime, but you get the point.
Some would argue that Anarchy couldn’t work due to the hierarchical tendencies seen naturally in social groups of humans. This is not a valid point, as Anarchy doesn’t oppose leadership. In fact I don’t believe that any true Anarchist would attempt to disagree. Having an Alpha increases odds of survival thus it is instinctive. Although it is somewhat irrelevant to my point (due to the fact that I don’t wish to argue against it), I will point out that one could make the argument that many of our instinctual tendencies could be discredited due to being outdated. This is caused by technological advancements moving faster than evolution. For example, we continue to crave sugar and fat in anticipation of the starvation during winter. This is obviously an outdated threat, but more obesity is seen today than ever before, and it is an instinct to store fat. Another example would be the male attraction to a female with wide hips. This instinct is due to the various complications that were once commonly seen during childbirth, and death of the mother during childbirth was once very commonplace. A female with wide hips displayed a genetic benefit to giving birth, and was an indication of the increased odds for the mother living to produce further off-spring. Why are we still attracted to traits that no longer serve us in any way? Again, this is beside the point but can be argued. Again, anarchy is not opposed to an alpha.
Terence McKenna speaks of a return to archaic values being the only hope for Humankind. Although I’m not sure if it’s the only hope, he brings up a valuable point. As I mentioned earlier in the article, wherever there is power, there is corruption. Smaller interdependent and self-sufficient “tribes” would spread power amongst the people, so that no one group could take control of the entirety as we see today with the massive state. Todays leaders are not coming from places of poverty or economic/social hardship. The ruling class consists of a small percentage of blood ties that have existed, often for thousands of years.
Fascism and the Corporate States of America TM*
Incase your unfamiliar with Fascism; it is absolutely vital that you have at least a fundamental understanding of its ideologies to assist in understanding the threat of the corporate agenda today. I would like to point out a fundamental difference between fascism and our current political establishment before I begin to go into depth on the endless similarities. Fascism embraces an authoritarian dictatorship and uses nationalism to persuade the people embrace it as well. This is obviously not the case in the United States. I am aware.
Lets start by quoting Wikipedia’s definition, “Fascism is a form of government, in which the country is considered more important than any one person, group, liberty, or provision.” Although an accurate definition, we still do not have any real understanding of the mechanics of Fascism. A somewhat more informative definition can be found with Merriam-Webster, and states as follows “often capitalized: a political philosophy, movement, or regime (as that of the Fascist) that exalts nation and often race above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition.” This description gives us some more insight. Fascist authority controls all forms of commerce amongst the people and relies heavily on business to forward its agenda of self-empowerment and preservation.
An interesting article, Dr. Lawrence Britt’s “Fourteen Defining Characteristics of Fascism,” brings up some crucial points that will help us to identify how and why the US is being compared to that of a fascist nation. He lists number two as “Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights — Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of “need.” The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.” Sound familiar? Another even more interesting point is Britt’s third characteristic “Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause — The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial, ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc.”
These concepts really do speak for themselves. Is it necessary to go into detail as to why a comparison between the current state of our beloved democracy and that of the Fascist Regime is unnervingly easy? In regards to the concept of “the need for a scapegoat,” the obvious example in our society would be the “War on Terror” and of course our much needed culprit, The Middle East and it’s Islamic people. Since the year 2001 our individual rights have been slowly (and sometimes not so slowly) dissipating under the guise of the War on Terror. The ruling class has used the ever-impending threat of terrorism at our doorstep, to strip us of rights, which were once considered inalienable.
Britt’s fourth defining characteristic is “Supremacy of the Military — Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and serving in the military are glamorized ideals.” This is yet another blatantly obvious similarity. This country is in the most debt that it is has seen. Even when adjusting for inflation, I would be hard pressed to believe anything other than the debt we are currently in being the largest debt ever owed in the history of our species. I say that to make the point that although we are quite literally drowning in debt both individually and as a nation. The US Military Industrial Complex continues to spend more of the taxpayer’s money on defense than the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th largest national defense spenders combined, every year! This is staggering. As a side note, it would be worthwhile to do some research into the 2.3 trillion dollars (allocated for defense in 2001) that somehow vanished out of thin air just prior to the attacks on 9/11. Coincidentally, the only records kept of the funds were paper files stored in one location. Take a wild guess where? A sole filing cabinet located within an office in the Pentagon. This lone record of one of the biggest monetary misplacements in history was of course located in the very same office that would be blown to smithereens by a 747 crashing in through its window in the 9/11 attacks. The attack on the Pentagon took place less that 24 hours after the missing funds were announced to the public.
I bring up all of these various ideas, comparisons, and facts to say that Democracy is a fantastic idea. I agree that it has drastically improved the overall state of humanity in some ways, and has been extremely detrimental in others. Either way you choose to look at it, there really is no arguing that it continues to serve us. Now that we have evolved, we need to let it go. In today’s world, it is plain old dangerous. It is a system that has been defiled over thousands of years and more importantly, leaves too much to be lost in the greedy hands of the ruling class. There is far too much blind faith in our nation’s leaders. As the system is altered and new laws are signed into effect, loopholes are found, technology advances, and corruption seeps in. Our politicians do NOT have our best interest in mind. They are quite literally owned by the same corporations that are destroying the planet and everything on it.
Why Democracy Does NOT work today
When the first democratic state was established in Greece thousands of years ago, the idea seemed simple. Instead of one individual ruling the people, the people decide collectively on a number of representatives to be trusted with making decisions that align with what is in the best interest of the people that they are chosen to represent. This system, when simplified on paper, sounds perfect. Unfortunately in the real world, it is anything but. The intricacies of the system are it’s downfall and the fine print once unnoticed, seems to become amplified over the course of history. Over time, loopholes are discovered and corruption begins to spread. The longer a system is in place the more corrupt it becomes. Those in power find ways to stay in power, whether directly or indirectly (i.e. campaign donations which put politicians directly into the pockets of major corporations)
Why is it that this concept is accepted as status quo? Why is it standard procedure to blatantly purchase the morality of our nation’s leaders before they even step foot into office? Are we naive enough to assume that that the massive corporate entities throwing away hundreds of thousands, sometimes millions of dollars for a candidates campaign, are doing so simply out generosity or out of the goodness of their own hearts and don’t expect anything to be done in return? I don’t buy it. These are companies like BP, Philip Morris, Microsoft, and thousands of other greedy gangs of thugs that really don’t care about you or me or even the health of our planet, in even the slightest of ways. The only thing that matters is the shareholder, the board, and ultimately, the lining of their own pockets.
This is the road we are travelling. With the momentum of history leading us to this very moment and accelerating ever more powerfully towards the transcendental object at the end of time, the Human Race is merely a grain of sand on the beach, dust in the wind. Perhaps that frightens you. For me however, it is comforting. To know that our seemingly inescapable greed and disempowerment of ourselves and the natural world around us, as drastic and influential of the universe as it may seem, inevitably, it doesn’t matter. Live your life how you want to live it. Don’t allow the opinions or the judgment of others, most of whom have zero regard for, or knowledge of, the nature of your existence, determine the choices you make in your life. Nobody has “importance.” Nobody has earned the “right” to make decisions about your life for you. The only thing that matters in this strange universe, is the one point of consciousness with which you are familiar, your own.