Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Who's Afraid Of Anarchy?

The following is a fairly typical dictionary definition of anarchy.
1. a state of society without government or law.
2. political and social disorder due to the absence of governmental control: The death of the king was followed by a year of anarchy.
3. a theory that regards the absence of all direct or coercive government as a political ideal and that proposes the cooperative and voluntary association of individuals and groups as the principal mode of organized society.
4. confusion; chaos; disorder: Intellectual and moral anarchy followed his loss of faith.

Interesting. Let's compare the above definition to that of a very similar word such as, monarchy. (Same source.)
1. a state or nation in which the supreme power is actually or nominally lodged in a monarch. Compare absolute monarchy, limited monarchy.
2. supreme power or sovereignty held by a single person.

Notice the difference? In the case of anarchy, definitions 2. and 4. are not real definitions of the word. Or, if they are, then why are not similar statements made about monarchy? For example:
3. abuse of power due to the absence of accountability in government.
4. parasitism, oppression; enslavement or subjugation of humanity.
See what I mean?

If we analyse the words, we find that the common suffix: archy, means rulership. The different prefixes refer to the type of rulership: "an" means without; "mon" means one. This simple analysis should reveal the spuriousness and manipulation contained in the second and fourth definitions of anarchy.

This sort of thing reminds me of the media manipulation leading up to the latest war with Iraq. Bush made a number of televised speeches in which he repeatedly mentioned Iraq and 911 in close temporal proximity. Bush swears he never actually said that Iraq was responsible for 911, but many who watched those speeches came away believing that Iraq was involved in 911. Although there was no real connection between the two, a connection was created through simple association. The same technique is being used when ideological interpretation is incorporated into the dictionary definitions of words.

I'm aware that the accepted meanings of words change somewhat over time due to usage, but surely there's a limit to how much political baggage can be officially attached to them. If anarchy is, by definition, a state of chaos and social turmoil, then we no longer have a word to indicate freedom from government in the absence of these features. If you don't understand why this matters, I would recommend reading, or re-reading, Orwell's "1984", with particular attention to it's appendix, "The Principles of Newspeak".

Most people have a very definite mental image to go with the word "anarchist". Something like this:

Right? These guys are not anarchists. They are just assholes. Sometimes they are revealed to be cops. Compare the above, with this photo of actual anarchists:

Note the absence of all-black clothing and kerchiefs over our faces. (Yeah, that's GodIAm and I.) The majority of real anarchists are decent and socially responsible people. The reason they are anarchists is because they do not recognise the right of any government to claim ownership of them. Also, it is because they trust their neighbours more than their rulers. My neighbours are mostly mind-controlled and dumb as rocks, but they fall short of actual evil. If the government were to fall, I can't picture any of them arming themselves to the teeth and embarking on murderous, destructive rampages. Unfortunately, the same can't be said of the government, who actually are armed to the teeth and engaged in murderous, destructive rampages.


  1. Well, precisely.

    Personally I prefer the term 'holarchy' to anarchy. It implies a recognition of the order of the whole, without that order being vested in any particular part ... and furthermore, suggesting that rather than a single whole, there are multiple wholes, nested in a fractal fashion: a whole built of wholes, each of which is also a whole, all the way down and all the way up.

    Holarchy of course - as a political theory - only works if the participants have internalized the rules of the game: individual citizens must be a state unto themselves, governing themselves according to a certain code; a polity made of such individuals will then self-organize, quite organically, without any need of explicit laws, into the collective apotheosis of those individual polities. The whole will reflect the parts, but only if the parts reflect the whole. This is always the case but since we do not recognize this, the process does not exactly produce the ideal outcome ... a society of ego-driven zombies produces a lurching zombified pile with egomaniacal and sociopathic demons rising to the top of the hierarchical heap, which further induces everyone to be driven by their egos and appetites, which sets up the conditions for society, which....

    As I'm fond of pointing out to people who question the workability of this, "Why aren't you dead right now? Is it because the law forbids me to kill you? Or is it because I choose not to?"

    Obviously holarchy is very much the same thing as anarchy, just with the emphasis shifted (towards the recognition and internalization of certain natural laws of cause and effect), and rebranded so as to avoid exactly the vicious and defamatory associations made by balaclava wearing cops at trade summits.

  2. Hi Psychegram. Yes, that's basically what I had in mind, and it does reflect my underlying assumptions. It occurs to me that government is antithetical to holism, since it assumes that order must be imposed, rather than develop organically. I don't see how the universe could have survived as long as it has without order being inherent in it. It's just not the kind of order wanted by TPTB.

  3. Indeed :) It is a great irony that the more order is imposed from above, the more the natural order on which everything truly rests is undermined ... thus leading to widening anarchy (in the conventional sense of the term): true disorder, chaos, the growth of entropy. The evidence for this is everywhere: spiritual hierarchies (the Catholic Church, newage foundations, etc) become cesspits of moral corruption; command economies (including monopolistic, monopsonistic, or oligarchical economies) lead to poverty; autocracies of every kind lead to crime and violence in the streets. The lesson would seem to be that, whenever a certain kind of order is imposed, the result will be precisely the opposite of whatever was originally desired.

    The alternative of course is to let things simply grow organically, to take advantage of complexity, to have ecologies of life, techne and spirit ... but such systems are impossible to control for they do not require it. They make controllers redundant and there can be nothing more terrifying to the parasitic psychopaths of the elite, whose only talent is in manipulating, coercing and sucking off of others.

  4. Good article. Thanks, Muluc. Psychegram is correct, and I'd like to add that those Elitists who impose their own unnatural "Order" upon humanity spread a fallacious myth on top of that: They say that a powerful state is neccesary to prevent social self-destruction. They say that the worse crime and social disorder become the more and more harsh laws are necessary to prevent it. They claim that humans would be socially non-cohesive if we were just left to out own devices. We would run riot, rampaging, raping, murdering and looting; the one and only thing that stops us doing that is the Elitist Rule of Law. Nonsense! If our natural behaviour was as bad as that how did we ever evolve in the first place? How is it that Indigenous and prehistoric societies held together before the first nation states arose in the late 4th Millunium BC? In fact those societies didn't only hold together, they thrived and suffered none of the malaises that our own society does. In fact it was only during times of shortage, like a famine or drought, that they fought wars. We fight them just because the Elitists tell us to!

  5. Hi Psychegram.
    I guess it comes down to whether one considers the natural world to be basically supportive or basically hostile to one's existence. It seems kind of obvious to me that I (meaning my individual expression) is part of the world. I came out of it. It made me. And therefore I can reasonably assume that it supports my existence. That approach works on a collective level as well for every other species on the planet, so I can't imagine why humans should be the single exception. Besides, what could I possibly acheive by setting my will in opposition to nature's intention? Talk about lost causes!

    Hi Ben. Thanks. I never trust people who claim that human nature is essencially predatory, brutal and pathologically selfish. If someone is claiming this, it means one of two things:
    A- They are lying, and therefore can't be trusted. Or,
    B- They believe it, and they couldn't do that unless it were true of them. Therefore they can't be trusted. If someone tells you that, "Every man has his price," all he's told you is that he has his price.
    I'm pleased to have discovered your blogs. Very nice work. Thanks.

  6. No matter how tightly you seal the pod, any separate existence is fraud, for you wouldn’t exist unless
    Everything gave you the nod.
    And yet there are plants that we’ve outlawed.
    We all walk around convinced that we’re flawed,
    And when we see others hurt we callously applaud.
    In this matrix of infinite possibility, why should any of this be?
    For if I am God is You,
    Why should we be such wretched slaves? To outgrow this sorry game we need not even be brave,
    But simply true to what and who
    We are:
    The stars.

    - Sirius Fenris, "Snowflakes and Stars"

  7. Hi Mulluc. Sorry for the delay in replying to your comment on HPANWO. Thanks for that.

    As I've said in my own comment on that, 6% of human bodies contain psychopaths, but these canb easily be idnetified and avoided when we learn to recognize the symptoms and warning-signs of them.