Center for a Stateless Society
A Left Market Anarchist Think Tank & Media Center
Tag: corporate
Why I Fight for $15
The Fight for $15 movement is usually identified with the fight for a $15 minimum wage. A call for government legislation is not the sort of thing you’d normally expect an anarchist to endorse. But in fact the movement to pay workers $15 or more is quite compatible with anarchist principles. Back in the late…
A Shill for the Banksters Falls Prey to Mirror-Imaging
In a recent speech to the Mortgage Bankers Association, Sen. Ben Sasse — a freshman Republican from Nebraska — jokingly accused his colleague Elizabeth Warren of wanting to remove all risk from the economy. Presumably he means that Warren wants to insulate ordinary people from risks like mortgages with unsustainable payments relative to their unexpectedly…
A Market Anarchist Critique of Marx’s Views on the State
“That government is best which governs not at all…” –Henry David Thoreau In this essay, I will contend that the role of the state is to prevent competition to its “monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force within a given territory”. In order to substantiate this argument, I will first compare Marx’s definition of…
Won’t Get Fooled Again
Right now the usual suspects are united in joy by Hillary Clinton’s official announcement of her candidacy for president (although anyone who seriously believed she was previously undecided on the issue probably also still believes in Santa Claus). By “usual suspects,” I mean self-styled “progressives” who think the Red/Blue divide reflects a serious disagreement in…
Il Finto Piano di Tutela di Jerry Brown è un Vero Regalo alle Aziende
Il decreto sul razionamento dell’acqua che il governatore della California Jerry Brown ha approvato il primo aprile (Executive Order B-29-15) ha ricevuto molti elogi immeritati dagli ambienti di centrosinistra. A leggere bene la proposta, si capisce che non riduce i consumi del 25%, anche se questa è l’impressione che se ne ricava leggendo i titoli….
The Best of Critiques; The Worst of Critiques
Megan Erickson’s article on techo-fixes for education (“Edutopia“) in the March issue of Jacobin is an excellent critique of corporate-driven education “reform” efforts like those of the Gates Foundation and IDEO. As a critique of attempts to build an alternative educational model around decentralizing technology in general, it’s… not so excellent. The immediate object of…
Jerry Brown’s Phony Conservation Plan is Real Corporate Welfare
California Governor Jerry Brown’s April 1 decree (Executive Order B-29-15) for rationing water has gotten lots of undeserved positive coverage on the center-left. If you read the fine print, it doesn’t actually reduce the state’s total usage by 25% (although that’s the impression you’d probably get just reading the headlines). It only applies to “potable…
Desktop Regulatory State in the News Again
According to the received version of “interest group pluralism” in J.K. Galbraith’s book American Capitalism, there’s supposed to be a sort of check-and-balance system (Galbraith called it “countervailing power”) between big business, government regulatory agencies and organized labor. But what usually happens in the real world, when the allegedly “opposing” centers of power are so…
“I Don’t See Class”
I hear expressions like “I don’t see race” or “I’m color-blind” a lot from people who want to ignore the issues of structural power imbalance or privilege in race issues. The same people are fond of equating racism to simple bigotry; by this standard, white bigotry against blacks and black bigotry against whites are equally…
The End of [Capitalism]
James R. Otteson. The End of Socialism (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2014). Otteson’s book is an eloquent defense of an economic system which maximizes decentralism and autonomy; it’s just not, as he supposes, a defense of capitalism. Likewise, it’s a good critique of centralized planning and top-down authority — but not of “socialism.” Otteson…
La FIFA e il suo Complice: lo Stato Brasiliano
Un articolo pubblicato nello stato di San Paolo in Brasile (“Brasil que se vire com arenas vazias, diz FIFA. ‘O problema é de vocês’”, Estadão Esportes, 21 marzo) nota come la Fifa abbia perso interesse per il Brasile: gli inutili stadi costruiti per la Coppa del Mondo del 2014 non sono un problema loro; ad…
Radical Potential: Our Blatant Opposition to the Status Quo
This election cycle’s crop of uninspiring presidential hopefuls, now including Texas Senator Ted Cruz, must be a relief to those favoring mass disillusionment with electoral politics. No candidate, Rand Paul included, represents a convincing alternative to the status quo. Contrast this with the current president, whose appeals to “hope” and “change” convinced many Americans of…
The Utopia of Rules
David Graeber. The Utopia of Rules: On Technology, Stupidity, and the Secret Joys of Bureaucracy (Brooklyn and London: Melville House, 2015). This book is, properly speaking, not a book at all, but a collection of essays loosely clustered around the common theme of bureaucracy. Of the material in the book, only the long introductory essay…
FIFA and Its Accomplice: The Brazilian State
A story over at Estado de S. Paulo (“Brasil que se vire com arenas vazias, diz FIFA. ‘O problema é de vocês’”, Estadão Esportes, March 21) notes that FIFA isn’t at all interested in Brazil anymore, and that the useless stadiums the 2014 World Cup left us are not their problem and should be dealt…
Jeff Riggenbach Reads: Those Who Control the Past Control the Future
C4SS Feed 44 presents Roderick Long‘s “Those Who Control the Past Control the Future” read by Jeff Riggenbach and edited by Nick Ford. To begin with, there never was anything remotely like a period of laissez-faire in American history (at least not if “laissez-faire” means “let the market operate freely” as opposed to “let the rich and powerful…
Against All Bosses: Government AND Corporate
I keep resolving not to comment on any more of Alternet‘s by-the-numbers anti-libertarian puff pieces, but a recent one from David Masciotra (“You’re Not the Boss of Me: Why Libertarianism is a Childish Sham,” February 26) is in its own category of wretchedness. Masciotra’s commentary includes two seemingly contradictory lines of argument. In the first,…
A Theoretically Incoherent Critique of the Free Market
As a libertarian masochist who keeps up with the regular by-the-numbers attacks on libertarianism at Alternet and Salon, I almost dared to hope for something at least marginally better from Robert Kuttner at The American Prospect (“The Libertarian Delusion,” Winter 2015). I was disappointed. “The stubborn appeal of the libertarian idea persists,” Kuttner writes, “despite…
È Ora di Distruggere il DRM
Il venti gennaio, la Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) ha annunciato il progetto Apollo 1201, un tentativo di sradicare le barriere digitali (DRM) dal mondo del commercio in rete. Guidato dal ben noto Cory Doctorow, il progetto punta ad “accelerare il cammino verso l’abrogazione delle leggi che proteggono il DRM” e “dare subito inizio ad un…
Edward Snowden e la Grande Rimozione
L’informatore dell’Nsa Edward Snowden continua a gettare la sua ombra sul mondo dell’informazione mondiale. Quasi ogni settimana arrivano nuove rivelazioni dalla montagna di informazioni in suo possesso, rivelazioni che vengono passate a giornalisti e che sono seguite dalle negazioni e tentativi di giustificazione da parte di politici e burocrati, messi a nudo come responsabili di…
“Net Neutrality”: a Net Increase in Statism, or a Net Reduction?
In an article I wrote several years ago (“Free Market Reforms and the Reduction of Statism,” The Freeman, Sept. 1, 2008), I stated some principles that are relevant to the current debate on “net neutrality”: Some forms of state intervention are primary. They involve the privileges, subsidies, and other structural bases of economic exploitation through…