Center for a Stateless Society
A Left Market Anarchist Think Tank & Media Center
Feature Articles
Breaching the Social Contract
America leads the world. No other nation imprisons more people than we do. Over 2.2 million men, women, and children currently reside in penitentiaries; another 4 million are under criminal supervision. In the past forty years, the incarcerated population has increased by a factor of five. Billions of our tax dollars are spent maintaining prisons…
Outside of Libertarianism: Corporate Capitalism Doesn’t Belong to Us
In a new article for Rolling Stone, “Inside the Koch Brothers’ Toxic Empire,” Tim Dickinson attempts to present the frequently demonized brothers Koch as essentially hardline libertarians, whose radical free market ideology is thoroughly mixed into their business philosophy and practices. We’ve all seen this article before. Liberal media outlets have made a whole industry…
The State Has No Right To Do Anything
I often hear people make casual remarks like, “Well, the State has a right to collect taxes,” “the State has a right to punish criminals,” or “the State has a right to controls its borders.” Inside, I am always somewhat horrified at how very easily these kinds of assumptions are made, at how obvious the…
A Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Critique of Spontaneous Order
According to Damon Linker, spontaneous order “might be the silliest and most harmful of all” libertarian ideas (“Libertarianism’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad idea,” The Week, Sept. 26). He summarizes spontaneous order, popularized by Hayek in the 20th century, as the belief that “when groups of individuals are left alone, without government oversight or…
Perceptions of Power
Parsing Political Divides in the Mainstream and in Anarchism CNBC describes the Corporate Perception Indicator as “a far-reaching survey of business executives and the general population from 25 markets,” “research firm Penn Schoen Berland survey[ing] 25,012 individuals and 1,816 business executives.” The results of the survey show quite unsurprisingly that the general public associates government…
Ron Paul: Thick or Thin?
At the Liberty Political Action Conference in Alexandria, Virginia, Ron Paul had a few words about libertarianiam, the non-aggression principle and tolerance. He pointed out the two basic principles of liberty are non-aggression and tolerance, “we have to become quite tolerant of the way people use their liberty.” Much to the lament of self-identified “thin…
The Anarchist as Lover
What would it be like if everyone loved everyone else? 10 out of 10 people agree, it’d be pretty fucking great. Unfortunately we are all, at this point, human. Our capacities to embrace each and every individual as a truly beautiful and unique creature are far beyond us. We also exist within social structures which…
Wildness as Praxis
The environmental movement may be larger than ever. On Sunday, September 21, the “People’s Climate March” flooded the streets of New York City. Estimates project an upwards of 400,000 people participated in the climate rally, with ten’s of thousands more showing solidarity in smaller demonstrations (significant in their own right – London was host to 40,000 people) across…
Klan-Baiting the Wobblies: Unreasonable
About the only thing A. Barton Hinkle gets right about the Industrial Workers of the World in “Meet the Left-Wing Extremist Running for U.S. Senate” is not calling them the “International Workers of the World”. Although at least Reason likening the “Wobblies”, whose founding antedates the Russian Revolution by over a decade, to “warmed-over Lenin” is not the…
The Day That Changed Everything
A day on which everyone can remember where they were is seldom a good memory. On September 11, 2001 we added another day to that list of days we’d rather forget. I was in an optimistic frame of mind when my radio alarm woke me that morning. My first real print publication, the pamphlet “Iron…
The Antimilitarist Libertarian Heritage
With the United States on the verge of another war in the Middle East — or is it merely the continuation of a decades-long war? — we libertarians need to reacquaint ourselves with our intellectual heritage of peace, antimilitarism, and anti-imperialism. This rich heritage is too often overlooked and frequently not appreciated at all. That…
The Situation of the Argentine Worker
Right after the economic crisis the country went through over ten years ago, which reached its climax in 2001, Argentina bounced back and entered a period of relative prosperity due to favorable foreign trade conditions. Nevertheless, the situation of the average Argentine worker remains the same as it has been for hundreds of years: their…
Crowdsourcing a New Wall Street?
As many in the libertarian community already know, Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne recently unveiled a plan to build a revolutionary new model of finance on the back of the old financial system. Namely, by creating a Bitcoin equivalent of the New York Stock Exchange in hopes of eventually replacing Wall Street entirely with a crypto-security trading system…
Ownership and Ideas
Like many libertarians, I’ve learned a lot from Murray Rothbard on a wide variety of subjects. Of course, no one gets everything right, especially someone as intellectually ambitious, multidisciplinary, and prolific as Rothbard. Nevertheless, reading the work of the man who left such a mark on the modern libertarian movement is as profitable as it…
Anarchy as the Golden Mean
My Center for a Stateless Society colleague Roderick Long once described full anarchy as the golden mean, not a form of zealotry or extremism, but a middle way “between mandating what should be optional and prohibiting what should be optional.” Professor Long’s point is not mere framing or spin, attempting to pitch anarchism to an…
How Privatizations Created New State Companies in Brazil
In July 2014, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff’s Facebook page celebrated the record production of iron ore by Vale. According to the page, the mining company “broke a record for iron ore production in the second quarter,” representing a “12.6% increase compared to the same time frame in 2013.” Several pages quickly pointed out Rousseff’s “mistake,”…
Smarter Red-Baiters, Please!
When I saw A. Barton Hinkle’s hit job on the Wobblies (“Meet the Left-Wing Extremist Running for U.S. Senate,” Reason, September 3), I had to double-check to make sure I was on the right website. Was it FrontPage Magazine? Breitbart? Nope — it was Reason! Reason prints some fairly right-leaning stuff, but seldom anything like…
Does Freedom Require Empire?
In a startling article, Daniel McCarthy, the admirable editor of The American Conservative magazine (TAC), writes, “Successive British and American empires created and upheld the world order in which [classical] liberalism could flourish.” In other words, as he writes in “Why Liberalism Means Empire,” “Liberalism and empire reinforced one another in manifold ways.” Therefore, if…
Possession of Liberty: The Political Economy of Benjamin R. Tucker
The political economy of Benjamin Tucker represents an alloy of its major influences, synthesizing the work of radical thinkers such as Josiah Warren, William B. Greene, Ezra Heywood, and Lysander Spooner to create a mature, comprehensive individualist anarchism. From Heywood came Tucker’s trademark analysis of the wrongs of rent, interest, and profit, “follow[ing] closely the…
“Gamergate” and Media Ethics in Trade Writing
It is occasionally, when I’m not having to defend colleagues from “anti-PC” crusaders terrified that they’re losing “muh libertarianism” or when I’m not writing joke articles making fun of Mark Ames, the mission of this blog series to engage in media criticism. Truth be told, there’s a lot to criticize about the media these days….