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Old 07-22-2012, 09:33 AM   #1
LirvA
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The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

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Anarcho-syndicalism is a branch of anarchism which endorses syndicalism. Syndicalism is an alternative co-operative economic system. Adherents view it as a potential force for revolutionary social change, replacing capitalism and the state with a new society, democratically self-managed by workers. Anarcho-syndicalists seek to abolish the wage system, regarding it as wage slavery, and state or private ownership of the means of production, which they believe lead to class divisions. Anarcho-syndicalist theory generally focuses on the labour movement.

Anarcho-syndicalists regard the state as a profoundly anti-worker institution. They view the primary purpose of the state as being the defense of private property and therefore of economic, social and political privilege, even when such defense denies its citizens the ability to enjoy material independence and the social autonomy which springs from it.
...

The principles of anarcho-syndicalism are workers' solidarity, direct action, and workers' self-management. Workers' solidarity means that anarcho-syndicalists believe all workers, no matter what their gender or ethnic group, are in a similar situation in regard to their bosses (class consciousness). Furthermore, it means that, in a capitalist system, any gains or losses made by some workers from or to bosses will eventually affect all workers. Therefore, to liberate themselves, all workers must support one another in their class conflict.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarcho_syndicalism





The means by which ASists attempt to cause social change is direct action.



Quote:
Direct action occurs when a group of people take an action which is intended to reveal an existing problem, highlight an alternative, or demonstrate a possible solution to a social issue. This can include nonviolent and less often violent activities which target persons, groups, or property deemed offensive to the direct action participants. Examples of direct action can include strikes, workplace occupations, sit-ins, tax resistance, graffiti, sabotage, hacktivism, property destruction, blockades, and other forms of community resistance. By contrast, electoral politics, diplomacy, negotiation, and arbitration are not usually described as direct action, as they are politically mediated. Non-violent actions are sometimes a form of civil disobedience, and may involve a degree of intentional law-breaking where persons place themselves in arrestable situations in order to make a political statement but other actions (such as strikes) may not violate criminal law. The aim is to either obstruct another political agent or political organization from performing some practice to which the activists object; or to solve perceived problems which traditional societal institutions (governments, powerful churches or establishment trade unions) are not addressing to the satisfaction of the direct action participants.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Direct_action


As an Anarcho-Capitalist, or voluntarist, I take multiple issues with Anarcho-Syndicalism, and the arguments can be summarized as Individualism vs. Collectivism, Capitalism vs. Socialism, and Anarchy vs. Democracy.






Natural Rights


My fundamental problem with ASism comes down to fundamental beliefs. As an ACist, I am a great believer in the concept of Natural Rights, and The Non Aggression Principle. It is morally wrong to initiate force against an individual or group of individuals that haven't unjustly initiated force against you or others, and the reason it is morally wrong is because we are all born with inalienable rights, among which are our rights to life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, and property.

ASists do not believe individuals have a right to own property, and do not adhere to the NAP. This has very bad implications. This means that an ASist may feel they are in the right to destroy others' property. This is very wrong.

We all have a right to own property. If we cultivate land, we have a right to the rewards, for we have put the work into it. If a bird flies about the forest gathering twigs and builds a nest in a tree, it has a right to occupy that nest, for it has built it.

ASists are guilty of faulty thinking on some major things, and their belief that individuals don't have a right to own property is one of them. They believe that workers have a right to all the fruit of their labor, but what if they work and produce a house on a plot of land? According to their beliefs, not a single one of them will have the sole rights to live there, decide how it's maintained, decide the ownership of it, etc. This brings us to the first major flaw in their thinking. They believe that Collectivism and Democracy can protect their rights and serve them economically.

If a group of ASist build a house, they believe that no one owns it and that they all have a right to reside there, and they make all decisions regarding it Democratically. They believe this is freedom but they are wrong.

So let's say I am one of the workers, but let's say I supplied all of the tools to build the house, I scouted out the plot of land and oversaw all the work and made sure it was done correctly and safely, and I also put in the most man hours. According to ASist, I do not have a right to decide who lives there, how it's maintained, whether its preserved or destroyed. This house on this land does NOT belong to me, and I cannot individually make decisions regarding it. In Anarcho-Syndicalism, I am just a single voter in the Democratic group of workers, and we all decide things collectively.

Furthermore, let's say that next to the plot of the land we built our house on, another individual built a house on another plot of land. But let's say he built it all by himself with absolutely no help from others. According to ASism, the group of people that built our house also have a collective right to live in the house the individual built. That individual does not own that plot of land or house, and he cannot rent out rooms to ASists that may not be able to stay in the house they helped build.

I have freedom and rights. You have freedom and rights. All individuals in a group have rights, but the group is not a separate entity, and the group does not have separate rights. ASist put the group of individuals above themselves and in doing so, willingly seek imposition on their personal rights. They actually dismiss their right to own property in their basic premise







The Non Aggression Principle


Anarcho-Syndicalists advocate and condone unjust initiation of force.


Quote:
Georges Sorel was a French philosopher and theorist of revolutionary syndicalism. His notion of the power of myth in people's lives inspired Marxists and Fascists.[1] It is, together with his defense of violence, the contribution for which he is most often remembered.
...

"The syndicalist or militant trade union movement, which burst into prominence in France around 1900, inspired Sorel to write his "Reflections on Violence. The turmoil engendered by strikes was universally condemned even by parliamentary socialists, who favored negotiation and conciliation. To justify the militancy and to give syndicalism an ideology, Sorel published the series of articles that became, as one of his biographers calls it, "a famous and infamous book."[7] Indeed, it was Sorel's only successful book of about a dozen published.[8]" This book was published in Italian, Spanish, German, Japanese and English.

Two of its themes have become a part of social science literature: the concept of the social myth and the virtue of violence. To Sorel the Syndicalist's general strike, the Marxist's catastrophic revolution, the Christian's church militant, the legends of the French Revolution, and the remembrance of June Days are all myths that move men, quite independent of their historical reality. As one of Sorel's disciples (Benito Mussolini) said, men do not move mountains; it is only necessary to create the illusion that mountains move. Social myths, says Sorel, are not descriptions of things, but "expressions of a determination to act."[9]

Myths enclose all the strongest inclinations of a people, of a party, or of a class, and the general strike is "the myth in which Socialism is wholly comprised.".[10] For Sorel the general strike was a catastrophic conception of socialism, the essence of the class struggle, and the only true Marxist means of effecting the revolution. Nowhere does Sorel endorse indiscriminate, brutal violence; only violence "enlightened by the idea of the general strike" [11] is unconditionally defended; only violence in the Marxist class war, as Sorel conceived it, is fine and heroic and in the service of the "immemorial interest of civilization." In fact, Sorel makes no justification of violence by philosophical argument, but uses long excursions into history and current events to demonstrate that ethical codes are relative to their time and place. In essence demonstrating that all our moral codes demonstrate moral relativism. Consistent with his position he could describe the Declaration of the Rights of Man as "only a colorless collection of abstract and confused formulas, without any practical bearing."
...

In his "Reflections on Violence", Sorel says that parliamentary socialism, and its middle-class of bureaucrats and newspaper-intellectuals does not understand social science, economics, or any other matter important for good rule as well as the traditional liberalist and capitalist elite that ruled before the mediocre middle-class became a powerful force in parliament. "How did these mediocre and silly people become so powerful?" Sorel asks. His theory on this is that the mediocre middle-class became powerful when the working-classes, people without property, were given the right to vote at the end of the 18th and beginning of the 19th century. Thus, the working classes now created a problem for themselves by creating a political elite that is more stupid and less competent than the people who had a monopoly of power before them. He proposed that this problem could only be fixed by a collective withdrawal and boycott of the parliamentary system by the workers. Thus, the workers must return to strikes and violence as their main political tool, so Sorel says. This gives the workers a sense of unity, a return to dignity, and weakens the dangerous and mediocre middle-class in their struggle for power, and their attack on capitalism.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georges_Sorel



I think this sums up ASism pretty well. ASists see themselves as at war with Capitalists, and feel they are in the right to aggress against Capitalists. They believe that individuals have no right to own property, so destroying a person's property is not violating any rights of theirs.








Anarcho-Syndicalism is not economically sound



ASism is not economically sound, and cannot possibly be as efficient as Capitalism in providing goods and services to people, as it is based on Democracy and Socialism.

Quote:
Voting in the polling place is a very different kind of freedom than voting in the marketplace. When you vote in the polling place ... you vote for a package, and if you are in the minority, you lose. You don't get what you want. When you vote in the marketplace, everybody gets what he votes for. If I vote for a green tie, I get a green tie. If you vote for a blue tie, you get a blue tie. If we do that in the polling booth, if 60% of us vote for a green tie, you have to wear a green tie. ...(Democracy) is a very different, less efficient mechanism for matching performance, matching results to individual tastes and preferences.
Free To Choose - Milton Friedman


Quote:
In a capitalist economy, incentives are of the utmost importance. Market prices, the profit-and-loss system of accounting and private property rights provide an efficient, interrelated system of incentives to guide and direct economic behavior. Capitalism is based on the theory that INCENTIVES MATTER!

Under socialism, incentives play a minimal role or are ignored totally. A centrally planned economy without market prices or profits, where property is not privately owned, is a system without an effective incentive mechanism to direct economic activity. By failing to emphasize incentives, socialism is a theory inconsistent with human nature and is therefore doomed to fail. Socialism is based on the theory that INCENTIVES DON'T MATTER!
http://spruce.flint.umich.edu/~mjperry/socialism.htm







Anarcho-Syndicalism is NOT Anarchy

Democracy is a form of GOVERNMENT. ASists make their decisions Democratically, and allow Collectivism to govern their lives. This is not Anarchy. Anarcho-Syndicalism is a misnomer. Not only do they support government in their fundamental philosophy, they also support government in the real world. See Chomsky:

Quote:
My short term goals are to defend and even strengthen elements of state authority, which though illegitimate in fundamental ways, are critically necessary right now to impede the dedicated efforts to roll back the progress that has been achieved in extending Democracy in human rights. State authority is now under severe attack in the more Democratic societies, but not because of conflicts with the libertarian vision, rather the opposite. Because it offers weak protection to some aspects of that vision. Governments have a fatal flaw. Unlike the private tyrannies, the institutions of state power and authority, offer to the despised public an opportunity to play some role, however limited, in managing their own affairs. That defect is intolerable to the masters, who now feel with some justification that changes in the international, economic, and political order offer the prospects of creating utopia for the masters with dismal prospects for most of the rest. It should be unnecessary to spell out here what I mean. The effects are all too obvious, even in the rich societies, from the corridors of power, to the streets, country side and prisons. For reasons that mirrored attention that lie beyond the scope of these remarks, the rollback campaign is currently spearheaded by dominant sectors of society in which the values under attack have been realized in some of their most advanced forms. The English speaking world, no small irony, but no common contradiction either.
Chomsky on Anarchism - Noam Chomsky


Quote:
Chomsky is scathing in his opposition to the view that anarchism is inconsistent with support for 'welfare state' measures, stating in part that

One can, of course, take the position that we don't care about the problems people face today, and want to think about a possible tomorrow. OK, but then don't pretend to have any interest in human beings and their fate, and stay in the seminar room and intellectual coffee house with other privileged people. Or one can take a much more humane position: I want to work, today, to build a better society for tomorrow -- the classical anarchist position, quite different from the slogans in the question. That's exactly right, and it leads directly to support for the people facing problems today: for enforcement of health and safety regulation, provision of national health insurance, support systems for people who need them, etc. That is not a sufficient condition for organizing for a different and better future, but it is a necessary condition. Anything else will receive the well-merited contempt of people who do not have the luxury to disregard the circumstances in which they live, and try to survive.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Politi..._welfare_state


Chomsky apparently believes that the government is necessary to preserve human rights, and actually advocates increasing the size and scope of the government. This is not Anarchism, it is statism. It is apparently common consensus though among ASists.

The IWW is a syndicalist union, and according to MissleDog, an IWW member, the IWW supports minimum wage laws and raising the minimum wage.


Quote:
The Industrial Workers of the World (IWW or the Wobblies) is an international union.
...
The IWW contends that all workers should be united as a class and that the wage system should be abolished.[5] They are known for the Wobbly Shop model of workplace democracy, in which workers elect their managers[6] and other forms of grassroots democracy (self-management) are implemented.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indust...s_of_the_World

Quote:
Originally Posted by LirvA View Post
MissleDog, has the IWW ever advocated/supported/fought for raising the minimum wage?
Quote:
Originally Posted by MissileDog View Post
Obviously.

You cannot achieve Anarchism by increasing government. The idea is to shrink the government until you eliminate it completely, not increase it. ASism and Chomsky are ass backwards, and it's summed up pretty well by this:

Quote:
Noam Chomsky has described libertarianism, as it is understood in the United states, as, "extreme advocation of total tyranny
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Politi..._welfare_state


Libertarianism, as it is understood in the United States, or Classical Liberalism, as it was originally known, emphasizes individual liberty above everything else. Libertarianism is based on the concept of Natural Rights and The Non Aggression Principle.

Ridiculous as it is though, Chomsky's position does make sense. Anarcho-Syndicalism is based on Collectivism, Socialism, violence, and government.



Quote:
Syndicalism has never been anything else than the ideal of plundering hordes.
Socialism - Ludwig von Mises

Last edited by LirvA; 07-22-2012 at 09:49 AM.
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Old 07-22-2012, 09:36 AM   #2
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

It was too long for PM wookie. Can we just keep this open and the other locked or deleted or something?

thx
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Old 07-22-2012, 09:48 AM   #3
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

inb4 somalia, why do u hate freedom, taxes = theft, roads, hospitals, walls of text by ILP, walls of text by missle dog, complaints about walls of text, defense of walls of text,snarky remarks by AlexM, civil rights legislation, racist accusations by Fly, TomCollins making sense, citations of borodog posts, praxeology, ron paul, rand paul, obama is a war criminal, drones, market failures, irrational actors, random flaming, linkes to mises, links to rothbard, links to friedman, links to krugman, hypotheticals, spain etc

popcorn.gif

Last edited by BluffsOften; 07-22-2012 at 10:08 AM.
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Old 07-22-2012, 10:01 AM   #4
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

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Originally Posted by BluffsOften View Post
citations of borodog posts



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Old 07-22-2012, 10:51 AM   #5
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

Livra, do you believe that property is currently 'efficiently allocated', and if not, how would/could a transition to AC/voluntarism/libertopia overcome this problem?
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Old 07-22-2012, 10:53 AM   #6
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

It's important to note that not all ACists believe in these mythical "rights" that LirvA is writing about. I for one think they are ridiculous and their constant evocation makes libertarians look foolish time and time again.
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Old 07-22-2012, 10:55 AM   #7
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

Tsao do you agree with NAP?
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Old 07-22-2012, 10:58 AM   #8
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

I'm a big believer in avoiding violence whenever possible, especially if its aggressive rather than defensive.
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:02 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Regret$ View Post
Livra, do you believe that property is currently 'efficiently allocated', and if not, how would/could a transition to AC/voluntarism/libertopia overcome this problem?

No, in the US much land is owned by government, and government has a very large role in the management of privately owned land as well.

Government selling off land to private owners, and reducing zoning and property taxes and other government impositions on private property owners would be a very good thing imo.
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:02 AM   #10
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

Quote:
Originally Posted by BluffsOften View Post
inb4 somalia, why do u hate freedom, taxes = theft, roads, hospitals, walls of text by ILP, walls of text by missle dog, complaints about walls of text, defense of walls of text,snarky remarks by AlexM, civil rights legislation, racist accusations by Fly, TomCollins making sense, citations of borodog posts, praxeology, ron paul, rand paul, obama is a war criminal, drones, market failures, irrational actors, random flaming, linkes to mises, links to rothbard, links to friedman, links to krugman, hypotheticals, spain etc

popcorn.gif
I think this needs to be edited as such:
- somalia
- why do u hate freedom
- taxes = theft, roads
- hospitals
- wall of text by ILP
- wall of text by missledog
- complaints about walls of text
- defense of walls of text
- snarky remarks by AlexM
- civil rights legislation
- racist accusations by Fly
- TomCollins making sense
- citations of borodog posts
- praxeology
- ron paul
- rand paul
- obama is a war criminal
- drones
- market failures
- irrational actors
- random flaming,
- links to mises
- links to rothbard
- links to friedman
- links to krugman
- hypotheticals
- spain

That needs to be edited into the OP of all anarcho threads and each item checked off by Wookie as they occur, so we all know how close we are to thread immortality at any time.

AMIRITE?!?
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:03 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by General Tsao View Post
I'm a big believer in avoiding violence whenever possible, especially if its aggressive rather than defensive.

Do you believe it is morally wrong to unjustly initiate force against others? If so, why?
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:09 AM   #12
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

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Do you believe it is morally wrong to unjustly initiate force against others? If so, why?
This is how I was raised, the morals society teaches.

I think 99% of people will agree with the NAP, the difference between them and libertarians is either:

A) They have not been able to come to the conclusion that taxation, conscription, etc, equals violent aggression

or

B) They agree that it is violent aggression (very few people think this IMO) but think it is necessary (minarchists fit nicely into this perspective).
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:16 AM   #13
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

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Do you believe it is morally wrong to unjustly initiate force against others? If so, why?
Not always.
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:16 AM   #14
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

Why is taxation and conscription morally wrong though? The answer is the natural rights we are born with. ACism is simply extension of natural morality into the real world through human action.
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:17 AM   #15
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Not always.


If usually then, why?
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:20 AM   #16
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

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Why is taxation and conscription morally wrong though? The answer is the natural rights we are born with. ACism is simply extension of natural morality into the real world through human action.
There is no such thing as natural rights, that phrase is inherently meaningless.

Taxation and conscription are not universally morally wrong - they're morally wrong to those who think aggressive violence is wrong and equate taxation/conscription with aggressive violence. There is no objective morality.
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:33 AM   #17
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

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If usually then, why?
Because it's in the vast majorities peoples interests to do so.
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:44 AM   #18
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

By OP's position we should all be Brits. How dare Washington and gang use unjust revolutionary force...
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Old 07-22-2012, 12:02 PM   #19
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

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By OP's position we should all be Brits. How dare Washington and gang use unjust revolutionary force...
I doubt he would call it unjust...
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Old 07-22-2012, 12:04 PM   #20
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

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I doubt he would call it unjust...
Then his view is not objective and he is just making judgment calls.
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Old 07-22-2012, 12:06 PM   #21
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

If one choice reduces aggression then it is fairly objective imo.
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Old 07-22-2012, 12:12 PM   #22
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

No at all. You can't sit there on one hand and say revolutionary force is evil. Then on the other hand owe your existence to it, think that instance of it is excusable. That's an emotional sentiment. And not objective in the least.
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Old 07-22-2012, 12:14 PM   #23
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By OP's position we should all be Brits. How dare Washington and gang use unjust revolutionary force...


What, declare themselves independent from the British government? Seeing as how government is based on unjust force, yeah, they're fine man.
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Old 07-22-2012, 12:17 PM   #24
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No at all. You can't sit there on one hand and say revolutionary force is evil. Then on the other hand owe your existence to it, think that instance of it is excusable. That's an emotional sentiment. And not objective in the least.


Revolutionary force against the mom and pop corner store isn't really justified ...
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Old 07-22-2012, 12:25 PM   #25
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Re: The Anarcho-Capitalist/Voluntarist perspective on Anarcho-Syndicalism

Dude. Either you are OK with armed struggle or you aren't.
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