Center for a Stateless Society
A Left Market Anarchist Think Tank & Media Center
Tag: exploitation
The State is No Friend of the Worker
The election season is upon us, and we’re hearing the usual political promises about raising wages. Democrats pledge to raise the minimum wage and assure equal pay for equal work for men and women. Republicans usually oppose those things, but their explanations are typically lame. (“The burden on small business would be increased too much.”)…
To Paul Krugman: Thou Art the Man
Paul Krugman, in denouncing the excessive market power of Amazon (“Amazon’s Monopsony is Not OK,” New York Times, October 19), proclaims that the Robber Baron Era ended when “we as a nation” put an end to it. There’s a powerful story in the book of 2 Samuel about the prophet Nathan confronting King David after…
Wat is links-libertarisme?
Links-libertarisme krijgt de laatste tijd veel aandacht in de bredere Amerikaanse libertarische gemeenschap. De term links-libertarisme is op vele manieren gebruikt binnen de Amerikaanse politiek, en er lijkt enige verwarring te zijn binnen de libertarische gemeenschap over wie die links-libertariërs nou werkelijk zijn. De basisideeën van links-libertarisme, zoals wij ze bij Alliance of the Libertarian…
It Ain’t Illegal — I Oughta Know, I’m the Sheriff!
At the Washington Post‘s Wonkblog, Jason Millman argues that expensive drugs are often worth the cost (“Why extremely expensive drugs are often worth the cost,” October 6). Although expensive specialty drugs like Sovaldi for Hepatitis C cost thousands of dollars a month, they may provide significantly greater benefits than traditional drugs — including “treatments for complex diseases…
Free Market Socialism: An Introduction
My good friend Ciaran, who introduced me to the insights of free market libertarianism (Particularly the works of Frederic Bastiat and Ludwig von Mises), expressed his confusion at the notion of free market socialism. As the concepts are typically considered polar opposites, I figured I would offer some glimpses at various strains of free market…
Jeff Madrick’s Misplaced Criticism of Free Trade
If you accept your enemy’s conceptual categories, you’re apt to wind up with a badly framed debate in which both sides are unsatisfactory. Jeff Madrick’s article “Our Misplaced Faith in Free Trade” (New York Times, October 3) clearly demonstrates this. The corporate state and its stooges in both major political parties and the commentariat are heavily…
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…
Debt: The Possibilities Ignored
It’s no secret that economists and libertarians have developed a bad habit of assuming things about history and other societies on first principle without actually checking archaeological or anthropological findings. On occasion the divide can be quite stark. David Graeber’s Debt: The First 5000 Years gets a lot of momentum by attacking a widely circulated…
Open Competition as “Competition Law”
A recent story in the Wall Street Journal highlights the “growing roster of countries” that now want a say in the world’s major corporate mergers. Given the interconnectedness of today’s global economy, it is no wonder that more than 100 international jurisdictions now claim antitrust authority to examine deals, all “embracing different approaches for evaluating…
If it Yelps, Let it Go
Crowd-sourcing is a novel way of organizing our society these days. Whether we’re trying to fund projects through Kickstarter or GoFundMe or editing the next big Wikipedia article, crowd-sourcing is a big part of what makes the internet great and a potential source of freedom for everyone. But just because something is largely peer-to-peer orientated doesn’t…
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…
Austrian Exploitation Theory
Marx had no monopoly. Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk (1851-1914), the second-generation giant of Austrian economics, famously refuted the theory, most commonly associated with Marx, that the employer-employee relationship is intrinsically exploitative. Less well known is that Böhm-Bawerk had an exploitation theory of his own, which he expressed in his 1889 masterpiece, Positive Theory of Interest, volume…
New Wine in Old Bottles
Big is not beautiful when it comes to economics. This is the key message of Kevin Carson’s “Industrial Policy: New Wine in Old Bottles“. His essay makes compelling arguments in favour of an anarchist society based on small-scale community manufacturing, peer-to-peer production and decentralised production. Carson sets out the ways in which the state concentrates economic…
Nationalism, Isolationism and Libertarianism
Both nationalism and isolationism are incompatible with libertarianism. They emanate from the idea that the national collective is the basic moral unit of existence. If either flourishes, individualism and liberty suffer. Individual freedom can’t survive people being subordinated to a mystic national social super organism. Neither can it flourish when individuals limit the scope of…
The Vampire of Practical Politics
With another fall election season picking up steam, The New Yorker’s Sam Wang wonders whether the 2014 election will “be a wave or a ripple.” A wave, Wang says, occurs when “one party makes massive gains and overturns the existing power dynamic.” But notwithstanding Wang’s intended point, the “existing power dynamic” in the United States…
The Black Hole of the American Injustice System
Though many Americans know that prisoners often work while behind bars, the conditions under which they toil may be less than clear. Fortune magazine made waves this summer when it reported that “[p]rison labor has gone artisanal,” revealing a multimillion dollar business that puts convicts to work making everything from specialty motorcycles to goat cheese sold at…
What Laissez Faire? on Feed 44
C4SS Feed 44 presents “What Laissez Faire?” from the book Markets Not Capitalism, written by Sheldon Richman, read by Stephanie Murphy and edited by Nick Ford. What, then, is this system called “capitalism”? It can’t be the free market because we have no free market. Today the hand of government is all over the economy — from money…
Vulture Funds vs. Argentina on Feed 44
C4SS Feed 44 presents Alan Furth‘s “Vulture Funds vs. Argentina” read by Christopher King and edited by Nick Ford. The most outrageous fallacy in this line of reasoning is the conflation of the political class of a country with its citizenry at large. Whenever vultures succeed in collecting the full value on defaulted government bonds, the…
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…
Two Foundational Elements of Statelessness
The book I will discuss below develops and defends the idea of law without a state. The book’s blurb tells us the following: This book elaborates and defends the idea of law without the state. Animated by a vision of peaceful, voluntary cooperation as a social ideal and building on a careful account of non-aggression,…