Friday, August 29, 2014

Getting to where I am now. [Philosophy]

I mean, if posting a bunch of links is hard work...

Hopefully this post will help you or maybe link to something you actually found enjoyable or useful. Either way, feel free to comment below. If you've got some links you think I'd like, post them in a comment. I'm off to a wedding.

I started to realize that the foundations of libertarianism really agreed with what I supported, a people focused society. Listening to the rational arguments put forward, I started to question my assumptions about political authority and by extension, government itself. I was a news and politics junky, but nothing was changing because of it and nothing seemed to change despite all the clamoring many millions of people made. Maybe government was not and could not work for the people it was supposed to serve? Unwillingly, I started to see social programs in the same dim light I viewed the military industrial complex. We need defense and we need help for the less fortunate, but in practice the government programs with these stated goals were bloated nightmares that only enriched bureaucrats and politicians. I wanted to prove them wrong, that government was just, but I had long disagreed with policies I didn't like in part because they were mandatory and not fulfilling their stated goals. I could not deny the same logic from others.

After reading and listening to lots of philosophy by proclaimed voluntarists and anarchists, I realigned my remaining values to all be based around voluntary relationships. I had always distrusted big, corruptible government and all its lying scumbag politicians. I had always known that the government did a piss poor job. These weren't closely kept secrets either;  mean, I was able to figure them out. The problem was, I sourced these problems mistakenly as being the fault of politicians, the other party, ignorance, or corporate interests. I thought that, if the well educated, compassionate people could just take control of ‘The One Ring’, we could use it for good unlike all these evil people currently in power (see what I did there? I’m so clever). I believed that government was in its nature good but corrupted from its original purpose. I didn't want to, but I left those thoughts behind because my logic behind those views fell apart when tested. I became an anarchist, coming to the conclusion found by so many others much more intelligent than I, that the government is, by its very nature, flawed. Government is based on coercion and false political authority. The arguments fell short in answering why that coercion is necessary or why coercion is only acceptable for a government. I saw the social contract argument fall flat: agreement by usage ignores a government monopoly on many services, agreement by continued presence to also be usable to condone rape, and authority from ownership leaves the question of how government first obtained land and why anyone else doing the same would be unjustified.

Anarchy, I find, fits with what I always believed: in freedom and individuals; in a social society that look out for each other; justice and opportunity for all. I dove into the mountains of philosophy sitting out there for anarchists: the non-aggression principle/presumption, possession vs. property rights, the methodology of grounding your ethics in first principles, the universality ethics, how an anarchic society could function, the different takes on anarchy, and so much more. I am still reading and working things out: property vs possession, homesteading, how do we transition to a stateless society, and other questions. So much state-sponsored violence, destruction, and theft exists that it seems more prudent to work towards freedom from the state and avoid the Nirvana fallacy of waiting for the 'perfect' solution. Now, I hope to spread the reasoning and ideas of Anarchy. Up against the massive power differential of governments the way forward is with actions that we can all do: raise our children peacefully, build alternatives to government services, help break the illusion of political authority, and help people learn that alternatives exist to coercive systems for when governments inevitably fall apart.

Some other blogs and sites that came to mind:

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