Center for a Stateless Society
A Left Market Anarchist Think Tank & Media Center
A Reminder on the Origins of American Gun Laws

…from James Wasserman’s “Pulling Liberty’s Teeth,” published in the third (2008) edition of the anthology Rebels and Devils: The Psychology of Liberation:

America’s first state and local gun laws were nearly all designed to keep guns out of the hands of slaves. These included laws passed prior to the American Revolution. After the Civil War, nearly every American gun law sought to keep guns out of the hands of freed former slaves. Thus, gun control has always had a particularly odious racial cast.

The Weekly Libertarian Leftist Review 101

Rami G. Khouri discusses the GCC intervention in Yemen.

Robert Parry discusses whether neocons are an existential threat.

Alfred McCoy discusses Obama’s policy towards China.

Nick Turse discusses the meaning of assassination.

Vijay Prashad discusses rogue states and diplomacy with Noam Chomsky.

Yves Engler discusses the Canadian contribution to British colonialism.

Glenn Greenwald discusses a good interview of a British Saudi loyalist.

Aisha Maniar discusses the efforts to hold torturers accountable.

Lucy Steigerwald discusses whether we’re getting somewhere on tech privacy.

Laurence M. Vance discusses the legitimacy of gambling laws.

Bill Buppert discusses American policing and the coming domestic insurgency.

Martha Mundy discusses the war in Yemen.

Ivan Eland discusses why the U.S. shouldn’t go to war with China.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses the spread of the War on Terror to Syria.

Adam Dick discusses ending sin taxes on marijuana.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses why libertarians don’t compromise.

Leonard Read discusses the penalties of surrender.

James Bovard discusses the Supreme Court’s record on freedom.

Jeffrey A. Tucker discusses Auberon Herbert.

Lawrence W. Reed discusses an antiwar hero.

Sheldon Richman discusses Planned Parenthood, social peace, and the libertarian approach.

Sheldon Richman discusses ending gun violence.

Sheldon Richman discusses why the politicians really need us.

David S. D’Amato discusses the right to rule.

Abigail R. Hall discusses the distrust of Uncle Sam.

Lucy Stegierwald discusses the rotten character of U.S. policy.

Glenn Greenwald discusses how U.S. bombs keep dropping in places where wars have allegedly ended.

Roderick T. Long discusses economic freedom in Athens.

John Pilger discusses Wikileaks.

Joshua Frank discusses the need to oppose all foreign intervention in Syria.

How Would Dual Power and Agorism Create a Free Society?

“Dual power” can be nicely summed up by the popular Wobbly phrase of “building the structure of the new society within the shell of the old.” Proponents of a dual power strategy share a belief in developing, at the grassroots level, an “alternative social infrastructure” that piece-by-piece replaces our statist, capitalist, society. Simply put, this revolutionary tactic involves competing with the state by building and utilizing counter-institutions that allow us to live in the type of non-oppressive world we want (as much possible) in the present. Dual power is seen as another form of civil disobedience and/or nonviolent direct action in agorist circles, but with the capability of vastly restructuring our society for ourselves and one another, while the state is left out to dry.

Insofar as how agorism may be used to create a free society, agorists believe that by using markets that operate outside the state’s purview (black and gray markets), a new economy is created alongside the existing “official” economy, slowly eroding the latter. Agorism was developed by Samuel Edward Konkin III, the late radical Rothbardian theorist, as a counter political-economic philosophy.

Examples he and modern day agorists share in vision include communities built around excess networks of producer and consumer cooperatives, small enterprises, mutual aid institutions, do-it-yourself collectives, community gardens, and credit unions that both do and do not directly conflict with capitalist institutions. If a monopoly is in operation with diseconomies of scale, dual-power should involve the act of providing the service at a smaller scale, at a more competitive ideal firm size, properly controlled and “regulated” by unionization of the working members within those firms. This “dual-power economy” would disengage, as far as possible, from the formal capitalist market economy, and increasingly create, over time, its competition within the black and gray market — leaving agorists substantially liberated to organize, produce, labor and exchange however they wish in this untaxed, non-state regulated counter-economy.

C4SS is Now on Patreon

We’re pleased to report we’re now on Patreon. Please visit our page and consider chipping in to our vital efforts on a monthly basis. Whatever amount you can give to C4SS is meaningful.

There are already countless ways to give to C4SS. Whether you want to make a one time gift or recurring monthly donations, there are a variety of ways to do so and multiple platforms to pick from. Whichever way you choose to give to C4SS, your contribution will go a long way towards helping us introduce market anarchist ideas into the stale mainstream debate.

Thanks from all of us here at the Center for a Stateless Society.

Anarcho-Capitalism vs. Market Anarchism

What’s the difference between “market anarchism” and “anarcho-capitalism”?

The difference between market anarchism and anarcho-capitalism is contentious, and somewhat semantic. Anarcho-capitalists choose to use the word “capitalism” because they believe it denotes a laissez-faire system of economics, free from government control. Market anarchists are far more critical of capitalism, as they believe the term “capitalism” does not denote a truly freed economic system. Market anarchists avoid using the word “capitalism” because it often refers to our current, unfree economic system, dominated by corporations and vast income inequality. Market anarchists say that “capitalism” places too much emphasis on capital, implying rule by the owners of the means of production, a form of oppression which market anarchists oppose. Many market anarchists believe that in a freed society, the world would look very different from how it looks now under state capitalism. They believe that freed markets would not result in corporate domination and hierarchical firm structure. If such firms did exist, they would be few and far between. As Gary Chartier and Charles Johnson write in Markets Not Capitalism, “Market anarchists believe in market exchange, not in economic privilege. They believe in free markets, not in capitalism.”

Adherents of anarcho-capitalism believe a capitalist, laissez-faire economic system is desirable for maximum freedom and human flourishing. Market anarchism does not seek to prescribe a desirable economic system. Instead, market anarchists recognize that not everyone in a free society will desire to engage in a profit-oriented market, and alternative voluntary economic systems, such as cooperatives, gift economies, and communes, may flourish. While market anarchists may often advocate market exchange, pluralism and decentralization are also of great significance. As long as these different voluntary economic systems can peacefully coexist, market anarchists take no issue with such alternatives.

The Weekly Libertarian Leftist Review 100

Tom Engelhardt discusses 14 years on from 9-11.

Sheldon Richman discusses the Kim Davis issue.

Nick Turse with additional reporting from Gabriel Karon discusses U.S. military policy in Africa.

Lucy Steigerwald discusses 9-11 and blowback.

Conor Friedersdorf discusses Hilary Clinton’s foreign policy.

Kevin Carson discusses peace through strength and other lies.

Chad Nelson discusses how Obama’s legacy will not be one of peace.

David R. Henderson discusses why the return of conscription won’t substantially reduce the probability of war.

Michael Bassett discusses the weaponization of human rights in the context of the Korean situation.

Patrick Cockburn discusses drone executions as a mark of tyranny.

Stephen Kinzer discusses the war against ISIS and staying out of it.

Todd E. Pierce discusses how U.S. war theories target dissenters.

Jonathan Cook discusses Israel.

Jacob Sullum discusses a call to bring back the War on Drugs.

George H. Smith discusses the traditional Christian take on private property.

Dan Sanchez discusses why peace can’t be achieved through politics.

Michael Swanson discusses a book about militarism.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses bringing Cold War murderers to justice.

David Boaz discusses Rand Paul.

Franklin Lamb discusses the situation in Lebanon.

Ramzy Baroud discusses Palestine and refugee crises.

Ajamu Baraka discusses the Yemen tragedy and the ongoing crisis of the left in the U.S.

David Swanson discusses Bernie Sander’s position on Saudi Arabia.

Thomas Mountain discusses blaming Africans for Western crimes.

Fred Kaplan discusses the GOP debate and foreign policy.

Dan Sanchez discusses Obama’s drone war.

Matt Peppe discusses U.S. relations with Cuba.

Nick Gillespie discusses Rand Paul’s performance in a recent GOP debate.

Cory Massimino discusses the Constitution.

Michael Swanson discusses empire, security, and the war state.

Editor’s Report, September 2015

As always, C4SS had an active month covering the world’s major headlines. Dawie Coetzee explained how the Volkswagen scandal will only serve to empower the established auto industry, Volkswagen included. Dylan Delikta looked at the Syrian refugee crisis and the insidious role that nation-states and borders play. And Ryan Calhoun took apart the Kim Davis saga, destroying the phony good vs. evil narrative surrounding Davis and Judge Bunning.

C4SS also published ACLU Sr. Editor Matthew Harwood’s excellent review of David Graeber’s The Utopia of Rules. Even Graeber himself stopped to take notice on Twitter.

We also reprinted several left-libertarian luminaries, including material from Karl Hess, Robert Anton Wilson, SEKIII and Voltairine de Cleyre. If you have requests for reprints of other anarchist classics, please reach out to us.

Finally, we’ve ramped up our output on the Stigmergy blog. We aspire to post daily and we encourage you to weigh in via the comments section.

Don’t you think this stellar output deserves a donation? It doesn’t have to be huge — whatever you can contribute will help keep C4SS going and growing.


Many thanks,

Animal Rights

I recently purchased Gary Francione‘s Introduction to Animal Rights: Your Child or the Dog? I hope to review it next month here at C4SS. I’ve found much of what I’ve watched and read thus far from Francione compelling. In the meantime, here is a good snippet on the topic of animal rights from Corin Bruce’s essay, Green Anarchism: Towards the Abolition of Heirarchy,

The idea of animal rights proposes that the kind of moral consideration that is often granted to members of our own species should be extended to non-human animals as well. This thinking goes hand in hand with green anarchism, because it can be seen to argue — upon recognising that the hierarchies that pervade our own society should be abolished — that the hierarchies that involve the human subordination of other species of animals should be abolished for much the same reasons.

Central to this approach is the notion of ‘speciesism’, which refers to a prejudice in favour of the interests of members of one’s own species, and against the interests of members of other species. This type of hierarchy is not based upon the recognition of any actual capacities held by members of other species, but instead on the mere fact that they are not members of our own group. Importantly, the logical structure of speciesism is argued to be the same as all other forms of social hierarchy. For example, it is integral to the attempted justification of racism, which locates what someone’s race happens to be as a basis for dominating them, and just as well to sexism, which depends instead on one’s sex. As such, proponents of animal rights argue that speciesist logic is just as irrational as that of any other form of domination: just because someone else is different to me, does not mean that they do not count morally, or that they can be dominated as if they were a resource for my own ends.

If we remove the veil of speciesism, and recognise the capacities that non-human animals often genuinely do possess, then what are we left with? Despite the sometimes vast differences between humans and non-human animals, one property that we seem to hold in common is that which is argued to be crucial for moral consideration: ‘sentience’. Sentience is understood as the capacity to be conscious of the world, or in other words to have experiences from one’s own point of view, which — perhaps most importantly for animal rights — translates into the capacity to feel pain and pleasure. It follows that when a sentient non-human animal such as a pig, donkey, or fish is dominated by a hierarchical structure, that they suffer harm in much the same way that a human being does. As such, it is argued that what species one happens to be a member of is ultimately irrelevant, and that it is whether or not one is sentient — be they human or not —  that is crucial for moral consideration, meaning that anarchist struggles should be broadened to include animal liberation as well.

See also David Graham, Walter Block, and C4SS Senior Fellow Roderick Long on the issue. Chapters 2 and 5 of C4SS Senior Fellow Gary Chartier’s book, Anarchy and Legal Order, briefly touch on the issue as well.

In an email exchange, Gary also shared the following: “By far the most interesting libertarian writing about the issue of animals is Stephen R. L. Clark. (Stephen sometimes calls himself a libertarian, sometimes an “anarcho-conservative.”) I would heartily recommend The Moral Status of Animals and Animals and Their Moral Standing.”

The C4SS Q4 Tor Node Fundraiser

Essentially, the tragedy of past revolutions has been that, sooner or later, their doors closed, “at ten in the evening.” The most critical function of modern technology must be to keep the doors of the revolution open forever! –Murray Bookchin

Part of the dissolutionary strategy advocated by C4SS is called Open Source Insurgency or embracing institutional, organizational or technological innovations — low-tech or high-tech — that render centralized or authoritarian governance impossible (or so damn costly as to be regarded impossible). One of these innovations is Tor. And, so, C4SS maintains an always-on Tor Node. But we need your help.

C4SS has maintained a Tor relay node for four years. This is our fourth quarter fundraiser for this project. Every contribution will help us maintain the node until January 2016.

We encourage everyone to consider operating a Tor relay node yourself. If this, for whatever reason, is not an option, you can still support the Tor project and online anonymity with a $5 donation to the C4SS Tor relay node.

C4SS maintains a Tor relay node with a freedom friendly data center in the Netherlands. The relay is part of a global network dedicated to the idea that a free society requires freedom of information. Since June 2011 C4SS has continuously added nearly 10 Mbps of bandwidth to the network (statistics). Although we can’t know, by design, what passes through the relay, it’s entirely likely that it has facilitated communications by revolutionaries, agorists, whistleblowers, journalists working under censorious regimes and many more striving to advance the cause of liberty and the dissolution of authority.

If you believe, as we do, that Tor is one of the technologies that makes both state and corporate oppression not only obsolete, but impossible, please consider operating as a Tor relay or donating to support the C4SS node.

The State is damage, we will find a route around!

If you are interested in learning more about Tor and how to become a relay node yourself, then check out our write up on the project: Stateless Tor.

Please donate today!

Bitcoin is also welcome:

Leader of the Opposition?

While the election of Jeremy Corbyn to the leadership of the Labour Party has injected some novelty into the utterly stale state of affairs that is British party-politics, he leaves much to be desired for those seeking radical change.

My fellow traveller, Pete James put it rather well:

It took me most of the week to decide what to think about Jeremy Corbyn’s victory. Quite a discrepancy from the 2 minutes flat in which I made my mind up about the previous leader of the UK Labour party. As the days wore on that discrepancy was telling me something in itself. What was so different about Jeremy ‘hard-left’ Corbyn?

First of all he seems to have some principles. That puts him way out in from of almost everyone else in Parliament in one jump, especially most of the rest of his slimy traitorous party. His anti-war credentials are solid, he’s against the monarchy and he’s pro-trade union. These are all good things. The right wing media have him placed a little to the left of Lenin but in reality if he’s a socialist at all he’s clearly a fairly mild one and I have to say, he’s definitely too authoritarian for my taste.

Nevertheless he belongs in the small and varied little handful of British politicians who have been known to stand their ground and have even been known to risk venturing some interesting opinions (should I say wasting some interesting opinions?).

Steve Baker (Con) has come out in favour of mutualising public services and is big on money reform. Quote: “It is bitterly disappointing that so many Labour members can see nothing but either charity or the state, forgetting that the old, old Left believed in the dignity of voluntary association for mutual benefit.”

Caroline Lucas (Green) has a left-libertarian attitude to most things (of sorts) and the Greens have been particularly good on open borders and redistributing power, considering both to be an important matter of justice.

Frank Field (Lab) has some interesting ideas about mutualist style welfare provision that on second glance don’t really need the state to remain in the picture:

I propose establishing four mutuals covering pensions, a new care pension, unemployment cover and increasing over time the funding of the NHS. Each mutual would have a membership board elected by each contributor, each of the four boards would have the power to set contribution rates and entitlement so that a clear link was established between the two. Each board would also have the power to set the general strategy of the mutual and to dismiss the management board if members were so disaffected with their governance.

In fact the more I think about it the more I realise that I probably wouldn’t really have spared much of a thought for an old school, big government lefty like Jezza, but since he’s a player now he’s obviously worth talking about.

Unfortunately despite his good points I’m almost certain that he will turn out to be a disappointment, especially if he gets power. Just look at what happened with Syriza in Greece. We were all excited, then they went back on their promises, then we were all disappointed for a bit, now we’ve just forgotten about them and moved on. This pattern will repeat itself over and over again until we stop looking for a saviour and start making the changes happen ourselves.

Why the cynicism? The state is a tool for managing capitalism, the modern state developed for that purpose. Just as you wouldn’t try to do the ironing with a hammer there is no sense at all in trying to use the state to achieve socialism. Its internal logic does not allow change to come from within or from the top down. It just makes a bloody mess.

Change begins with us building the new world within the shell of the old, not as an integral part of it, or as a dependent of it but as an alternative. It is probably possible to make the state less destructive and harmful for the time being and I’m willing to go out on a limb and say that I believe some people are trying to do that but that is not the real task at hand. The big job, the one that the vast majority of us need to be urgently getting on with is making all that good stuff happen ourselves. As a big, subversive, society.


Over at Cafe Hayek, Don Boudreaux remarks on the arrogance of Pope Francis. Boudreaux is troubled by the Pope’s “jetting ostentatiously around the globe” telling other people how to arrange their economic affairs. Amen.

Unfortunately, Boudreaux’s criticism is limited solely to the Pope’s economic pronouncements. More troubling is the monopoly all Popes, the Catholic Church, and religions in general, pretend to have over morality.

As Emma Goldman stated in The Philsophy of Atheism: “Consciously or unconsciously, most theists see in gods and devils, heaven and hell, reward and punishnient, a whip to lash the people into obedience, meekness and contentment.”

I’d prefer the Pope stick to economic commentary. It’d make him far less dangerous.

UPDATE: Kevin Carson asks, “If Boudreaux doesn’t like the Pope jet-setting around giving other countries economic advice, I wonder what he thinks of the Chicago Boys and AEI?”

The Weekly Libertarian Leftist Review 99

George H. Smith discusses whether Jean Meslier was a communist anarchist or not.

Michael F. Cannon discusses one GOP proposal to replace Obamacare.

Louis Lo discusses how free speech is under attack in Hong Kong.

Meagan Stiles discusses D.C.’s war on CrossFit.

Bobby Ghosh discusses an infamous bombing in Iraq.

Louis Proyect discusses an article on the conflict in Syria.

James Jay Carafano discusses America’s five worst military defeats.

Richard Burt and Dimitri K. Simes discuss foreign policy by bumper sticker.

Richard M. Ebeling discusses why great national purposes mean less freedom.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses a new conservative hero.

Spencer Ackerman discusses a call for the U.S. military to target legal critics of the War on Terror.

Ryan Calhoun discusses the colonial mindset of the Oath Keepers.

Laurence M. Vance discusses whether libertarians should vote Republican or not.

Matt Ford discusses an academic paper advocating the targeting of War on Terror critics.

Anthony Billingsley discusses why bombs can’t bring peace to Syria.

Iona Craig discusses how the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen is killing civilians.

Lucy Steigerwald discusses Dick Cheney.

Laurence M. Vance discusses Obamacare and the GOP.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses closed borders between the states.

Justin Raimondo discusses the question of who will stand up to the war party.

Kevin Carson discusses Jeffrey Tucker’s book on Bitocin and P2P.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses the U.S. boycott of China’s celebration of WW2.

Glenn Greenwald discusses the U.S. use and sale of cluster bombs.

George H. Smith discusses a thinker’s view of property.

Roderick T. Long discusses market competition and war.

Roderick T. Long discusses justice.

Roderick T. Long discusses how competition created Greek philosophy.

Patrick Higgins discusses his recent Jacobin article on Syria.

Ann Garrison discusses Samantha Power.

Rachel Herzing discusses police abolition.

Media Coordinator Report, August 2015

This is my first Media Coordinator report and I have a lot of ground to cover. August was the month I took over the media operations and was also the month I had to take an extended leave to get a back surgery. Thankfully, my back is fixed, bolted in place, and media coordination is up and running. Below, I post numbers for July — which I believe needed to be covered in more detail — and August. Also, I’ll make some remarks on the direction I’m taking C4SS’s media operation.

July numbers and notes:

Numbers and other interesting notes for August:

C4SS’s Media Coordination activities are undergoing an overhaul. During the many years of Tom Knapp’s tenure, C4SS’s main outreach operation was focused on trying to get our op-eds on local newspaper pages. I believe, however, that we haven’t given proper attention to websites, which have gained relevance over the years. Thus, I’ll try to do in the English Media Coordination the same thing I’ve done successfully in the Portuguese Media Coordination (which has been under my watch for over a year now) and shift focus to the internet.

My goal is to build a sizable list of local web outlets that will be getting a stream of our content — and I’ve already started doing it, having compiled a 700+ list of addresses.

Not only that, but since C4SS works on a wide range of topics, my goal is to strengthen relationships with several outlets that share some our ideas and should be open to our writing. I’ve already compiled several lists of internet media outlets that focus on a variety of topics (environmental, educational, leftist, libertarian, foreign policy, and so on), and that have been and should be open to our work. Also, since these outlets tend not to be constrained by the usual op-ed style rules, I will be sending our feature articles to the appropriate outlets as well.

The objective is to get more eyeballs on our content, and I’m determined to do it!

And if you want to support that goal, do make a donation!

The Center for a Stateless Society is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, hence any donation to us is tax-deducible.

Help us get anarchy in ever more papers and — from now on — screens!

The Weekly Libertarian Leftist Review 98

Jonathan Marshall discusses Chuck Schumer’s troubling Mideast record.

Robert Parry discusses the dangerous redefinition of “terrorism”.

Uri Avnery discusses the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

Doug Bandow discusses why North Korea may never negotiate on nukes.

Daniel McAdams discusses the neocon foreign policy Walmart.

Patrick Cockburn discusses the plight of Syrian Kurds.

George Leef discusses government vs progress.

Doug Bandow discusses licensing and having to get permission from the government to work.

Richard Ebeling discusses the human cost of socialism in power.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses immigration policy.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses why FFF doesn’t compromise.

Todd E. Pierce discusses Ron Paul’s new book on war.

Nick Gillespie discusses why there’s no war on cops.

Jacob Sullum discusses five drug scares vs reality.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses the Iranian regime’s “justice” system.

Sheldon Richman discusses Donald Trump.

Andrew J. Bacevich discusses Randolph Bourne.

Dan Sanchez discusses the creation of huddled masses.

Ivan Eland discusses the situation in Iraq.

Jonathan Cook discusses the Israeli prime minister’s push against the Iran deal.

Eric Draitser discusses America’s imperial footprint in Africa.

Glenn Greenwald discusses Hilary’s recent militarist speech at the Brookings Institution.

Nick Turse discusses special ops training missions.

Ivan Eland discusses the U.S. response to the Syrian refugee crisis.

Robert Parry discusses how neocons destabilized Europe.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses 4 wars that are undermining our freedom.

Laurence M. Vance discusses the simplicity of libertarianism.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses the way back from 9-11.

David S. D’Amato discusses occupational licensing.

Peter Beinart discusses Cheney’s lust for war with Iran.

Director’s Report: 2015 So Far

It has been more than a couple of months since the last Director’s Report; everyone at C4SS has been extremely busy and C4SS has been going through some changes. C4SS has gone through so many changes, in fact, that I need to tell you about them.

Old Positions, New People

Early 2015, Thomas Knapp handed the torch of C4SS English Media Coordinator to Trevor Hultner. And, in July 2015, Hultner passed the position to C4SS’s Portuguese Media Coordinator Erick Vasconcelos. This has been bittersweet transition: We lost Knapp and Hultner, but we gained more Vasconcelos. Tom Knapp took his place among our Senior Fellows, Trevor Hultner is working on other important projects, like The Anarchist Audio Archive. On the other hand, Erick Vasconcelos is a veteran media coordinator and translator that has done amazing things for C4SS in Brazil and for our supporters around the world that read Portuguese. We at C4SS are excited to see where Vasconcelos takes us as both our Portuguese and English Media Coordinator.

New Positions, New People 

As C4SS continues to grow and its responsibilities expand, the need for a dedicated Senior Editor became more and more apparent. The C4SS Senior Editor, in a nutshell, oversees all of C4SS’s printed material — Commentaries, Features, Reviews, Studies, Blogs, everything — and coordinates with all the writers to get their material publish-ready. We are honored to have Chad Nelson, whose editor skills have benefited, as C4SS’s first Senior Editor.

C4SS has a Mutual Exchange program, an organized discussion between members of C4SS with other scholars or influential persons within the liberty or anarchist community covering topics of particular interest to C4SS. Unfortunately, this program has been sporadic and, at times, disorganized. C4SS now has a Mutual Exchange Coordinator dedicated to organizing topics and communicating with prospective writers for a regular monthly discussion. The perfect person for this job, who comes fully experienced for the task, is Cory Massimino.

We have a few more notable additions to the C4SS Family. We are humbled to have Jeff Riggenbach take a position as a C4SS Senior Fellow. Libertarian Scholar Mikayla Novak is one of our newest C4SS Fellow after her wonderful study: Gender Identity and Libertarianism. Our other C4SS Fellows are our previous interns: Dylan Delikta and James C. Walker.

Speaking on the C4SS Internship Program, we are happy to congratulate James C. Walker for being the first intern to successful negotiate all of writing tasks that comprise the Program. Walker’s graduation brings the program one step closer to being fully tested and ready to accept applicants. For the next six months C4SS will be nurturing, not one, not two, but three interns: Benjamin Blowe, Kelly Vee and T.J. Scholl.

The Month to Month

As C4SS moves through 2015, we continue to maintain a Tor Relay Node and publish videos to our youtube channel: Feed 44. We are happy to report that Feed 44 has passed the 1,000 subscriber mark and is growing everyday. A regular C4SS podcast is also in the works.

C4SS has, through our parent organization The Molinari Institute, been granted 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status. All of your donations to C4SS or The Molinari Institute are tax-deductible.

On the other hand, if you are interested in supporting your favorite C4SS writers directly you can probably find them on Patreon.

We are able to report that the C4SS Political Quiz is getting fixed. We have raised enough money to give it a complete overhaul, and it should be ready soon.

That is enough for now, I will report more progress next month. All of this progress is dependent on your support. Every little bit helps and is immensely appreciated.

Please Support Today!

All of this work is only sustainable through your support. If you think the various political and economic debates around the world are enhanced by the addition of left libertarian market anarchist, freed market anti-capitalist or laissez faire socialist solutions, challenges, provocations or participation, please, donate $5 today. Keep C4SS going and growing.

ALL the best!

P.S. An added feature to the regular Director’s Report, I have asked C4SS’s Senior Editor, Chad Nelson, to pick out a few articles that caught his eye each month to get some extra attention.

C4SS Senior Editor’s favorite articles for July 2015:

Kevin Carson’s “An Open Letter to the Greek People

In his commentary, Carson speaks directly to the Greek people on behalf of C4SS. In doing so, he extends not only C4SS’s sympathies for their plight, but also our stateless solutions to their capitalist-created debt crisis. Says Carson, “Our goal is to render existing institutions irrelevant.”

Nick Ford’s “The Tortured Logic Behind Using Torture

Ford lays bare the American government’s immoral and ineffectual torture regime. He also suggests that rather than tinker with “small ball” political reforms like NDAA amendments, Americans ought to demand wholesale abolition of the dreadful National Security State.

Chad Nelson’s “Carly Fiorina Claims She’s Not Part of the Professional Political Class

Fiorina stands little chance of becoming POTUS. But her claim that she’s divorced from the political class because she spent her professional years as a Fortune 100 CEO is a myth worth dispelling. The dots are connected here for the corporate apologists who fail to see big business and the state as partners in crime.

For August 2015:

Kevin Carson’s “Education: Guaranteeing Access Isn’t Enough

In “Education: Guaranteeing Access Isn’t Enough,” Kevin Carson questions the very foundations of America’s current education system. While the mainstream left focuses on “guaranteeing access” to a deeply flawed system, Carson pushes abolition, favoring a self-directed model that truly serves students, rather than the bloated administrative class.

Kelly Vee’s “Will the Real Feminists Please Stand Up

Kelly Vee challenges self-proclaimed feminists like Lena Dunham who object to Amensty International’s call for legalization of sex work in her commentary “Will the Real Feminists Please Stand Up?” Says Vee, their opposition to sex work stems from “a place of privilege…ignorance about the realities of sex work,” and a lack of respect for female self-ownership.

Cory Massimino’s “Sanders’s Immigration Comments Prove We Need a Radical Left

Is Bernie Sanders deserving of the progressive pedestal he’s been put on? Cory Massimino says one look at Sanders’s conservative and reactionary immigration stance should send true progressives running for the hills. In his piece “Sanders’s Immigration Comments Prove We Need a Radical Left,” Massimino claims that Sanders’s presidential candidacy merely illustrates our desperate need for a truly radical left.


A Follow Up Exchange Between Richman and Block

Following their August 28th debate on left-libertarianism, Sheldon and Walter continued their exchange via a series of emails:

Dear Sheldon,

Suppose it were proven that racism, prejudice, hatred for homosexuals, etc., was the best way to promote libertarianism. Let us stipulate that this is so, arguendo. Would you then say that libertarians should promote these stances?

If so, you would then be a right libertarian, not a left libertarian, correct?

Suppose it were proven that chess playing was the best way to promote libertarianism. Let us stipulate that this is so, arguendo. Would you then say that libertarians should promote these stances?

If so, don’t you see that we are no longer discussing what libertarianism IS, and are now talking about how best to promote it, an entirely different matter?

If I read Jeff Tucker correctly, he would consider me a brutal libertarian since I think that libertarianism, qua libertarianism, simply has NO position whatsoever on racism, prejudice, hatred for homosexuals, etc. Do you agree with him on this?

Best regards,



I’m puzzled by your hypothetical because it assumes that I put the promotion of libertarianism or liberty — divorced from all other considerations — at the summit of my concerns. I do not, and I never said I did. That would be an odd position for a thick libertarian to take. (It’s closer to thin libertarianism.) So no: I could not engage in vices, such as racism, for the sake of promoting libertarianism or liberty (as if that would work).

I did say that since I care about liberty, I care how it is promoted and therefore about grounding it as solidly as possible. (Which leads to the thick position that the grounds can imply commitments to other values.) But that is different from saying that I’d do anything — anything — to promote liberty. Since I root liberty in a conception of virtue, I certainly would and could not use vicious methods to promote it.

When Jeff uses the term “brutalism,” he’s referring, as he made plain, to a school of architecture that eschewed anything not deemed absolutely essential to the structure. It has nothing to do with brutality. Things have essences (epistemologically speaking), but that does not mean that things are nothing but their essences. A person is more than his rational faculty. So with libertarianism. It implies more than nonaggression in that its grounds imply other obligations. But — and this is what you overlook — some obligations are enforceable (nonaggression) and some are not (e.g, keeping naked promises; being respectful). There’s no theory of what you call positive rights here.

Regards to you and your bcc list,


Thanks for your response.

In this article of yours:

Richman, Sheldon. 2014A. “TGIF: In Praise of ‘Thick’ Libertarianism.” April 4; [LINK]

You say this: “To put it more concretely, if a libertarian observed a growing propensity to embrace (nonviolent) racism, that person, qua libertarian, ought to be concerned. Why? Because that attitude and resulting conduct can be expected to eat away at the values conducive to libertarianism. It’s the same sort of reason that a libertarian would be concerned by, say, a growing acceptance of Keynesian ideas, even though merely holding and advocating those ideas does not require the use of force.”

So, now, I ask you suppose this were not true. Nonviolent racism (I suppose this means thinking that blacks are better track athletes than whites, but have lower IQs) will NOT “eat away at the values conducive to libertarianism” by stipulation. And yet you’re still back at the same old lemonade stand, maintaining you would not do this. I simply don’t understand.

And, what about chess. Surely, you would not consider this a “vice.” Would you say, under these stipulated conditions, that libertarians ought to be “concerned” with people who refuse to play chess?

I never said that you put the “promotion of libertarianism or liberty … at the summit of (your) concerns.” Rather, my disappointment with you, well, your position, is that you conflate the promotion of liberty with how liberty should be defined. I define it, simply, as the non aggression principle coupled with private property rights based on homesteading. If I understand you correctly, you agree with this (unlike those bleeding heart “libertarians”) but then add on all sorts of side order conditions: pro-feminism, anti-discrimination, opposition to hierarchies, etc. These may or may not help promote liberty. That is an empirical issue, as far as I’m concerned (my conclusion is that it helps with some people, hurts with others). But I’m talking libertarian PRINCIPLE and you are conflating this with the promotion of liberty.

For me, both left and right libertarianism are problematic. There is only plain old libertarianism, as defined above. (This is one of the reasons I am known far and wide as Walter Moderate Block). Of course, we libertarians have other interests. Some like chess, some like checkers. Should we then have chess libertarians and checker libertarians? Some of us like baseball, others football. Should we then have baseball libertarians and football libertarians? This would be silly. Just as silly as left and right libertarianism. Yes, Murray Rothbard wrote, sometimes, as a left libertarian, other times as a right libertarian. He did so when there were very few of us, in an attempt to gain converts for plain old libertarianism. And there is nothing wrong with that. For example, when trying to convert lefties, emphasize the libertarian view on drug and prostitution legalization, and our view on victimless crimes. When trying to convince righties of the merits of libertarianism, focus on our views on taxes, regulations, minimum wages, free enterprise, etc. I don’t deny that this left-right business arose in France a while ago. When you mentioned this in our debate, I didn’t dispute your historical facts. But, they are irrelevant to the PRINCIPLE of libertarianism.

Incidentally, I may have mislead you by mentioning, only, bcc. I should have said I’ve been blogging this: Block, Walter E. 2015. “Another Question to Sheldon Richman.” August 31; [LINK] If this creates any disquiet for you, I apologize. I only meant to say I would be sharing this conversation with others. Since we had had a public debate on this, I had a senior moment in not being more clear.

Best regards,



[Sheldon:] Share away!


Dear Sheldon:

Great. I didn’t think you’d mind.

Best regards,



Dear Walter,

Show me where I conflate the promotion of liberty with the definition of liberty.

No matter how many hypotheticals you concoct, my point stands. Libertarians qua libertarians are justified in being concerned — I choose this word carefully — about anything that would tend to erode the values underpinning libertarianism. I’m amazed that’s controversial.


Dear Sheldon:

You ask where I think you “conflate the promotion of liberty with the definition of liberty.” I think you do so many, many times in your writings. Let me just give you one example of this. This quote comes from here:

Richman, Sheldon. 2014C. “TGIF: Libertarianism Rightly Conceived.” May 2; [LINK]

In this you state: “The proposition on the table is that the most robust case for the libertarian philosophy … entails commitments not only to the Nonaggression Principle … but also to other values that don’t directly relate to aggression (for example, opposition to even non-rights-violating forms of racism).

I interpret “entails” and “commitments” as speaking to the very essence of libertarianism. I interpret you as saying here, that part of the DEFINITION of libertarianism is, indeed, the NAP. But that another part of it is opposition to “non-rights-violating forms of racism.” If this is not a conflation of what libertarianism IS, with the best way, in your opinion, of promoting it, then nothing is.

On another matter. If you think that Jeff Tucker’s essay on “brutalism” mainly concerns architecture, … I don’t know what to say. I’ll be polite: we have very different readings of this article. I see this writing of his as supportive of your thick libertarian views. And, just as problematic.

Sheldon, I no longer wish to carry on this debate as we have been doing, verbally, and via blog. Instead, I propose that we conduct it via the scholarly journal literature. (Hey, I’m almost at 500 articles, and I need all the help I can get.) So, please consider publishing material on this topic in that venue. As it happens, I have written two scholarly articles on this:

Montgomery, Stephen and Walter E. Block. Forthcoming. Review of Social and Economic Issues (RSEI).”Animal torture and thick libertarianism.”

Block, Walter E. Unpublished. “Thin and thick libertarianism”

Both of which I attach. You may want to consider using these as targets. One of my next books will be on this, and I plan to include your writings on this topic as targets.

Best regards,



You misread me. Promotion means presenting a case. First, obviously, you need a case to present. That was my concern. Then I said the case entails (not necessarily logically) other commitments. I did not say the Nonaggression Obligation does.

I don’t plan to write this up formally. Lots of good stuff is already on the record.

The Weekly Libertarian Leftist Review 97

Uri Avnery discusses Bibi.

Uri Avnery discusses Israel’s aborted strike on Iran.

Lucy Steigerwald discusses the inevitability of a war president.

Simon Jenkins discusses the drumbeat for sending troops back to Iraq.

Laurence M. Vance discusses Reagan Republicans.

Laurence M. Vance discusses Christianity, libertarianism, and the War on Drugs.

Butler Shaffer discusses why you shouldn’t support anyone running for office.

Adam Hudson discusses what are the U.S. plans for Gitmo?

Roderick T. Long discusses Hesiod’s preference for productive work over violent taking.

Gary Greenbaum discusses why the West shouldn’t intervene in Africa.

Robert Parry discusses the pragmatic case against interventionism.

Mike Ludwig discusses Obama’s new heroin strategy.

Gareth Porter discusses potential Israeli war with Iran.

A. Barton Hinkle discusses strangling the poor with red tape.

Robert Parry discusses the riddle of Obama’s foreign policy.

Marcy Wheeler discusses Dick Cheney’s hypocrisy on Iran.

Daniel Larison discusses the civilian dead in the Saudi war on Yemen.

Thomas E Woods Jr. discusses a book on conservative heroes.

Musa Al-Gharbi discusses how America failed Afghan women.

Daniel J. D’Amico discusses American’s prison population.

Steve Chapman discusses why outlawing prostitution is a crime.

Lawrence Wittner discusses militarism run amok.

Yves Engler discusses Canadian violation of international law in Libya.

Zaid Jilani discusses the architects of the Iraq War who oppose the Iran deal.

J.D. Tucille discusses online black markets.

Andrew Syrios discusses prohibition.

Dr. Randy Blazak discusses Donald Trump as the face of white supremacy.

Robert Fantina discusses Hilary Clinton, Palestine, and the long view.

William R. Polk discusses nuclear war.

Long and Block Debate Thick vs. Thin Libertarianism

Following his debate with Sheldon Richman, Walter Block recently joined C4SS’s Roderick Long for another in-depth conversation about thick vs. thin libertarianism. The debate is moderated by Daniel Rothschild, and is just over an hour long.

Introducing the Mutual Exchange Symposium

I’m happy to announce the official launch of the Center for a Stateless Society’s (C4SS) Monthly Mutual Exchange Symposium. C4SS’s effort to achieve mutual understanding through exchange is now a monthly project. Mutual Exchange will explore many issues from a variety of different perspectives.

Mutual Exchange is C4SS’s goal in two senses: We favor a society rooted in peaceful, voluntary cooperation, and we seek to foster understanding through ongoing dialogue. Mutual Exchange will provide opportunities for conversation about issues that matter to C4SS’s audience.

A lead essay, deliberately provocative, will be followed by responses from inside and outside C4SS, a rejoinder by our lead essayist, and further contributions if need be. C4SS is extremely interested in feedback from our readers. Suggestions and comments are enthusiastically encouraged. If you’re interested in proposing topics and/or authors for our program to pursue, or if you’re interested in participating yourself, please email C4SS’s Mutual Exchange Coordinator, Cory Massimino, at

I look forward to Mutual Exchange, and to seeing our authors and readers gain a better, fuller understanding through shared dialogue.

Let’s Talk Left-Libertarianism

On August 28th, 2015, C4SS’s Sheldon Richman joined Walter Block for a discussion of left-libertarianism and thick vs. thin libertarianism. The discussion was moderated by Lucy Steigerwald and hosted by The discussion is about 60 minutes.

Markets Not Capitalism
Organization Theory
Conscience of an Anarchist