All that is wrong with the world…

September 8, 2010

Anarchy seems to be all fail

Filed under: Issues...the world...etc.. — Tags: , , , , — allthatiswrong @ 9:55 am

About a month ago I went along to the meeting of an anarchy advocacy group here in Las Vegas. It was interesting, but ended up pretty much reinforcing my views. I am very, very interested in having a different system of government. Democracy is a pretty shitty solution, and it saddens me how many people blindly revere and advocate it.

Given this though, I have never given an anarchic government due consideration. Why? I don’t see there being any way it could be a viable solution. I should note I have not done a lot of reading up on Anarchy, not even the comprehensive Wikipedia article, so my views (as always) should be taken with a grain of salt.

One of the main reasons I don’t consider anarchy to be a possible solution is that it seems damned from the start. It doesn’t matter if a nice group of people figure out how to get along nicely and coexist without needing a state, as it creates a power vacuum. Whenever there is a power vacuum, some enterprising individual or group will come along to fill it, by force if necessary.

That’s the fundamental problem with Anarchy, it relies on a romanticized version of human nature. There is a reason there has never been a lasting anarchic government throughout human history. In every culture at every point in time, people have looked to leaders. There has always been some form of government, whether it were a simple chieftain and tribal leaders, or any of the current governments.

One of the examples anarchists like to use to show that an anarchic government can work is the Free Territory. Yes, it’s true that for a point in time there was a successful anarchic government in place, and then what happened? The people with power inevitable moved in and asserted themselves to fill the vacuum. It’s just how it goes.

There are numerous other problems with anarchy as a system of government in my opinion. For example, how do you have any kind of judicial system? Surely you need an objective authority to administer penalties in a consistent manner? Any alternative is close to mob rule or vigilantism, which have to be the worst solutions for judicial systems there are.

What about other things, like health care or market regulation? At the meeting I went to, there were people who didn’t see why it would be a bad thing if people were allowed to sell vegetables or raw milk out of their backyard. In theory people should have the freedom to do this. However, we need a way to ensure that people purchasing such products will not unknowingly suffer. That’s where regulation comes in…, making sure the cows or plants or whatever are healthy.

I wonder what the people who complain that they can’t do whatever they want out of their own backyards without regulation would do, when people started coming back being upset that they caught some disease or got sick or whatever. In an anarchical society, there possibly wouldn’t be decent health care, so the problem might just go away. Otherwise, they could come back, and without a system of law or justice to hold them back could take revenge in a manner they felt was fair.

When challenged on some of the issues I mentioned above, they admit there may be a need for a judicial system or regulation or such…, so is that anarchy, or a minimalistic government – a different thing entirely? That in a whole seems to be the issue with people advocating anarchy. They have not put too much thought into it. It’s is an undeveloped system of government for people who have not bothered to develop their thoughts or argument for a better system of government. Of course, I would love to hear arguments in favor of anarchy or referrals to such.


  1. well.. you seem to have it all wrong. If there would be anarchy, there would be no government. No ONE holds power over anyone. There are no “laws” but only common courtesy and sense. There have been, and still are many successful anarchist systems.
    Read a little more about it, and talk to a few real anarchists before you make these conclusions.
    You’re an american, you don’t even know what a proper health care is anyways. You’ve lost touch with what you really are.
    We are nothing more than domesticated animals, not so different from the chimps and elephants in the zoo.

    Anarchy… picture everything you know.. gone. replace it with something new.

    Comment by lava — October 6, 2010 @ 11:02 pm

    • Hi lava,

      Thanks for replying.

      I have to ask though, did you read what I wrote? The notion of no government is flawed from the get go. It’s fine to discuss the various different types of government, or even to advocate an extreme minimalist government, but to have no government is not just ludicrous, but impossible.

      I did talk to anarchists, and if you read what I wrote you will see it was an anarchists meeting that inspired me to write this. Indeed, they may not have been the best sample of anarchists, but don’t say I haven’t spoken to any.

      Why would you assume I am an American? A baseless assumption, strawman and ad hominem all in one go, nice. Although it doesn’t really do much to help your case.

      Anarchy seems to be the goto for people who don’t want to give things much thought, and are not capable of discussing proper solutions to the problems we currently face as a society.

      There is a reason it has never existed for any significant length of time in history.

      But, hey, best of luck.

      Comment by allthatiswrong — October 7, 2010 @ 1:55 am

  2. Anarchy seems to be the goto for people who don’t want to give things much thought, and are not capable of discussing proper solutions to the problems we currently face as a society.

    i disagree. as lava already said talk to some REAL anarchist. alot of people call themselves anarchist but dont even know what it really means. The goverment is for people who dont want to give live 2 much thought. they just let them handle it and as long as they SEE positive effects they shut up and support it. Anarchist do think about live. we just dont think its fair that the goverment can decide what we can and cant do. and im not saying that just because i want to do whatever i want. most people still have decency and common sense to figure out what is accaptable and what not. as for the people with power. they just have to let their fettish go or die. (not saying this because i think it cool or funny. its just the only way.) you are right about that. anarchist and powerlovers cant live in harmony. but from my point of view selfish bastards deserve to die, rather than peaceloving anarchist.

    i wont let some democratic suit decide what i can and cant do. if i want to smoke a joint (without causing trouble for others (second hand smoking) then i will smoke a joint. if i want to live near a river i wont pay the goverment for LAND THEY STOLE.

    think about what you say and about what anarchy really is before you post…

    (sorry for my english. its not my home language…)

    Comment by dude — April 27, 2012 @ 7:42 am

    • So in an anarchist society, I would be free to sell heroin to depressed teenagers, get them addicted, profit from that, and face no repercussion when they overdose and die? Or would the angry mob of parents who kill me also face no repercussion?

      Comment by allthatiswrong — December 11, 2012 @ 4:23 am

  3. also the real reason Anarchy doesnt last is because we (the anarchist) are just a small percentage of the world population. most people believe blindly what a person with (good) education tells them. those people with good education/jobs are usually the ones that lose the most from anarchy. they also have to power to make anarchy look like something dumb/violent.

    most people are like sheep. they dont care whos in charge or how the worlds gonna end, as long as they only notice the possitve sides…

    Comment by dude — April 27, 2012 @ 7:49 am

  4. Well the fact of the matter is that people don’t always look to leaders or feel the need to put someone in authority over their group. On the contrary in many societies if someone tries to exercise power and authority over others or how you call it ‘fill a power vacuum’ they shunned by the rest of the group because these societies take not exercising power over others as one of their core values. The societies I talk about are closely-knit tribal societies where nearly everybody knows everybody else. It is actually a myth that every tribe has a chief that makes all decisions. Authority in tribal societies is based upon the person’s actual practical knowledge like hunting, gathering, cooking, navigation, etc. but authority isn’t totalized and made unquestionably central to one person or group. An anarchical society means a society where the so-called ‘power vacuum’ is filled by each and every person based on their practical knowledge rather than any formal organizational position.

    Comment by Daniel — November 29, 2014 @ 4:35 pm

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