Center for a Stateless Society
A Left Market Anarchist Think Tank & Media Center
Feature Articles
The Spooner-Tucker Doctrine: An Economist’s View
First, I [1] must begin by affirming my conviction that Lysander Spooner and Benjamin R. Tucker were unsurpassed as political philosophers and that nothing is more needed today than a revival and development of the largely forgotten legacy that they left to political philosophy. By the mid-nineteenth century, the libertarian individualist doctrine had reached the point…
Rothbard versus the Marshallian Synthesis
Murray Rothbard rejected, in the strongest terms, this Marshallian attempt at a synthesis of marginalist innovations with the legacy of Ricardo. And with it, he rejected Marshall’s attempted synthesis of labor and waiting as elements of “real cost.” To understand why, we must start with Rothbard’s distinction between the judging of actions ex ante and ex post….
The Marshallian Synthesis
Alfred Marshall, the founder of the so-called neoclassical school, was also the first prominent economist to attempt a reconciliation of Ricardo with the marginalists. Following the Senior-Longfield school, as interpreted by Mill, Marshall treated the “abstinence” of capital (or “waiting”) as another form of disutility alongside labor. He thus fused them into a unified subjective…
Symposium on Mutualist Political Economy
Many of the nineteenth-century individualist anarchists, and in particular those thinkers associated with Benjamin Tucker’s journal Liberty, sought to combine a political theory based on individual sovereignty and self-ownership with an economic theory based on the labor theory of value. Like Marxists, they tended to condemn the wage system as oppressive, and interpreted profit, rent,…
Stop Being Idiots? Only When IP is a Historical Novelty
Over at WIRED, a website I once held more respect for, an article by Jordan Crucchiola called, “Dear Idiots, Stop Leaking Comic-Con Trailers” has drawn some recent attention. For those who (somehow) don’t know, Comic Con is an international event for all things geeky, but especially (or at least, supposedly) related to comic books. The…
Greece: If You’re Taking Out the Trash, Don’t Forget the Garbage
I. The Nonexistent Ethical Dilemma The showdown between Greece and the EU is one of those events that brings out in stark contrast the dividing line between libertarians whose main concern is genuine economic freedom, and the sort of libertarian whose priority is the interests of big business and the propertied classes. In an exchange…
Why Does Ron Bailey Hate Free Markets?
Reason‘s science editor Ron Bailey (“Pope Francis and Naomi Klein Both Hate Free Markets, Technological Progress, and Economic Growth,” Reason, June 29) refers to Naomi Klein as a “prominent hater of free markets,” adding that she also hates “technological progress and economic growth.” But based on my readings of both Klein and Bailey, I think…
“Heritage Not Hate”: A Lie With Any Flag
Images circulated, in the aftermath of Dylann Roof’s racially motivated mass shooting at the historically black Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, included not only numerous pictures of Roof brandishing the Confederate battle flag but one of him squatting over a rumpled U.S. flag and trampling it underfoot. His disrespect to Old Glory suggests that he…
Freed Gender Identity as a Libertarian Issue
There is no doubt that the last twelve months have been a watershed period concerning the greater visibility of transgender, genderqueer, and other gender‑diverse people in both mainstream and social media. Two examples from recent times most readily spring ready to the mind. The actress Laverne Cox graced the front cover of the iconic Time…
What Back Pain Taught Me About Urban Design
I have a herniated disc. According to my MRI’s report, I have a “diffuse disc protrusion” that reaches the “center posterior/lateral right of the L5-S1 intervertebral disc”. L5 and S1 vertebrae are located in the lumbar section of your body. The discs are the natural cushion between the vertebrae. When a disc is damaged, it…
Sex and Rolling Stone: Orange is the New Prison Reform
It’s sad evidence of collective latent racism that no one cares about prison until a conventionally attractive, intelligent, well-educated, middle-class, urban white woman goes there. Hence, Orange is the New Black, a funny and moving hit original series based on a bestselling memoir. How is it that black and Latina women are relegated to supporting…
Involuntary Commitment: Is Illness a Crime?
Involuntary commitment is the ability of the State to institutionalize mentally ill people against their will. Perhaps the most well-known law providing for involuntary commitment is Florida’s “Baker Act” of 1971, which allows for the involuntary commitment of a person who (a) may possibly have a mental illness, and (b) may be harm to themselves,…
Dread Pirate Roberts, Beyond The Law!
Ross Ulbricht has been sentenced to die inside a cage. We call this a “life sentence”, but it is a death sentence. His fate is quite literally to die in a cage in order to punish him for operating the online drug market known as the Silk Road. But truly, that is not his crime….
Black Widow’s Infertility: More than a Sexist Trope
In the first Avengers movie, Black Widow stands alone in a field of men. Despite being the token female character, she breaks the bounds of classic Hollywood femininity and demonstrates depth and a sense of humor. Then came Avengers 2: Age of Ultron. In a highly controversial move, Black Widow reveals that she is infertile,…
Policy Research and the Limits of Statistical Utilitarianism
I should begin by affirming that I have no objection, in principle, to the use of or the appeal to statistical information, to assessing the empirical impacts of a given policy choice. [1] Such appeals are an important aspect of public policy research and of the advocacy of libertarian principles. Statistics, in and of themselves, are…
Individualism, Anti-Essentialism and Intersectionality
Social justice is, in large part, based in the concept of identity politics, or politics based on oppression, privilege, and group identity. Identity politics is important because of social and historical context. Understanding group interactions and their effect on the individuals in these groups is essential to fighting oppression. While many libertarians and individualist anarchists…
Beware of Wonkish Libertarianism
Here I will attempt to refine some remarks that I recently made on Twitter, arguing that libertarians ought to be wary of the general phenomenon of public policy “wonkishness” — which I’ll define very loosely as a concern with offering practical public policy reforms or proposals based on statistical and empirical evidence (the kind of…
Liberty or Authority? A Useful Political Spectrum
Conservatism and libertarianism don’t belong together. Even in cases where conservatives are using the same rhetoric as libertarians, they too often don’t mean anything like what we mean; their “free market” is an apologetic for the economic status quo and global corporatism, their “equality before the law” is reserved only for traditionally privileged in-groups (think…
Non-Aggression, Self-Defense and the Death Penalty
A general maxim that most people live their lives by is the notion that coercion is only cool when someone coerced you first. That is, violence is never justified unless it’s used in self-defense. Most people don’t go around using violence to get what they want. Rather, they reserve their capacity for force for situations…
Rothbard’s Perversion of Marx
Michelle Fransan, from the São Paulo’s Instituto Liberal, published an article this week (“Marx e a defesa da prostituição forçada“, Liberzone, May 13) that supposedly “proved” how Marx advocated the dissolution of family and general forced prostitution. It’s an old meme that refuses to die. It’s also a lie that forces me into the awkward…
Markets Not Capitalism
Organization Theory
Conscience of an Anarchist