Commentary
​​There’s No Such Thing as Cancel Culture
“I’ve been canceled!” laments the millionaire in their sixth TV interview (tenth if you count podcast episodes) since tweeting a racial slur as “a joke.” “What about free speech!” they yell freely in front of the camera(s) and microphone(s) meant just for them. I mean really: how “canceled” can someone be if they still have…
Living with Surveillance
Lots of chatter here and there amongst supposedly anti-social residents of the imperial core; anarchists, goths, progressive Christians, tattoo artists, idealistic farmers, student revolutionaries. Do we want digital “anonymity” or not? Or, less dramatically, should we have Instagram? Should we have Facebook? Should we participate in the Matrix so readily? “Anonymity” is in quotes because…
Anarchism and Cryptocurrency
Introduction Cryptocurrency, a digital currency in which transactions are verified and recorded by a decentralized system using cryptography, rather than by a centralized authority, is a controversial technology amongst anarchists, even though it is often used as a tool for undermining state power. The left generally sees cryptocurrency as a negative due to its function…
Karl Widerquist’s “A Dilemma for Libertarianism”
Karl Widerquist’s “A Dilemma for Libertarianism” deserves to be better known. It exposes a contradiction in natural rights libertarianism, a set of principles held by those who seek to build a capitalist political philosophy on the basis of property rights.  These principles typically include: That individuals can legitimately own property if the property was justly…
What Does AI Think of AI Art?
As the debate about AI art and writing took over the Internet, we at C4SS got to wondering: what does the AI itself think about all this? While it’s not yet possible for AI to give us opinions without some prompting, C4SS’s Evan Pierce sat down with ChatGPT to co-write some essays in favor of…
Frisian Freedom: A Research Opportunity for Libertarians?
Libertarian authors often point to historical examples of societies (or aspects of societies) that putatively approximate their political ideals. Some popular examples of polycentric or quasi-polycentric legal regimes and/or decentralized property arrangements include Anglo-Saxon England,¹ ancient and medieval Ireland,² the American frontier,³ and Iceland’s Free Commonwealth period,⁴ among others. My purpose here is not to…
Revolution in Rojava: Democratic Autonomy in Kurdistan
The Kurdish people are the largest stateless nation in the world. An estimated 40 million Kurds live in Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Turkey. Despite their common origins and cultural practices, these four states have denied the Kurds recognition of their identity or autonomy as a distinct minority with their own culture and language. At different…
The Invisible Life of Migrants
After becoming a migrant in Europe, I’ve seen all kinds of people that the dominant culture and the state are blind to. These people are unwelcomed by a society that uses them only for dirty jobs. And I’m talking about the migrants and refugees in Europe who live to survive. They are the most endangered…
The Long Shadow of Colonialist Ideology
In the present South African political discourse, it is tragic how often elements of colonialist ideology crop up in the arguments of the very people who are most wont to insist that one cannot demolish the master’s house with the master’s tools — tragic because I want them to be right! The metaphor is nonsensical…
On The Limits of Liberty
“The individual is increasingly deprived of the moral decisions as to how he should live his own life, and instead is ruled, fed, clothed, and educated as a social unit, accommodated in the appropriate housing unit, and amused in accordance to the standards that give pleasure and satisfaction to the masses.” -C.G. Jung, Civilization In…
I Am “Bread-Pilled” by Kropotkin’s Vision of Social Utopia
I just finished reading The Conquest of Bread by the Russian anarchist Peter Kropotkin (1842-1921). The book inspired Catalonia syndicalists in the Spanish Civil War, Magonism in Mexico, and the Occupy movement but still… I wasn’t expecting anything, I thought I’d be very bored because the book was written in 1892, I was sure it…
“Car Culture”: Just Stop
In the course of his 2006 Rothbard Memorial Lecture, Rothbard’s “Left and Right”: Forty Years Later, Roderick Long creates a beautiful device to illustrate package-deal anti-concepts in the Randian sense: “Suppose I were to invent a new word, zaxlebax, and define it as ‘a metallic sphere, like the Washington Monument.’ That’s the definition — ‘a…
Two Short Speeches on SCOTUS Tyranny
From a 2020 protest against the Trump SCOTUS appointment: Even assuming the legitimacy of the state to begin with, the Supreme Court is not as it should be! Thomas Jefferson was correct when he wrote the following: “For intending to establish three departments, coordinate and independent, that they might check and balance one another, it…
The Modern Urban Form as a Capitalist Construct
I could not, in the course of a fifteen-minute internet search, find a definite first attestation of the expression “to go to town,” meaning to do something with great energy or exuberance. That a number of sources report a probable 19th-century American origin is not surprising given that the idiom rests on a metaphoric use…
On the Anatomy of the Right
There was not too long ago a tendency among South African artists, authors, and musicians to produce transparently derivative work, because they were not as uniquely privy to the arcane cultural gnosis which inspired them as they thought they were. Indeed I must confess that I am guilty of something like that at this very…
Libertarians Should NOT Support Texan Secession
Recently, the Republican Party of Texas released a brand new platform stating that “Texas retains the right to secede from the United States, and the Texas Legislature should be called upon to pass a referendum consistent thereto” and calls “for the people of Texas to determine whether or not the State of Texas should reassert…
They Leave Us No Choice
“If voting changed anything, they’d make it illegal.” – Emma Goldman Roe v. Wade has been overturned, allowing states to make abortion (i.e. any medical procedure that harms the “unborn” regardless of context) a felony. What other rights get taken away when the government decides a voluntary medical procedure that you agree to is now…
The Ethical Case for Not Repaying your Student Loans
Did you take out a student loan from the government or a chartered bank backed by a government guarantee to cover the loan if you default? Do you, as a libertarian/market anarchist, feel morally obligated to repay the loan? If so, don’t. Why? Let me back up a bit here. Your deliberations about whether to…
An Apology to the Neurodivergent Community
Spooky has rightfully criticized me for utilizing obscene and ableist language in my article “Libertarianism vs Psychopathic Dumbfuckery.” I am deeply, deeply sorry to the neurodivergent community for the crass, thoughtless, and harmful language that I used. I’ve caused harm to people who are already marginalized in society, and there are no excuses for that. …
The Limitations of Contra-Elitism
On May 21st, 2021, the Center published a piece by Andrew Kemle titled “Libertarianism vs Psychopathic Dumbfuckery.” The article discusses Rand Paul’s active role in the ongoing disinformation campaign against vaccination and COVID response more generally, focusing specifically on his promotion of conspiracies blaming eminent immunologist Dr. Anthony Fauci and the U.S. government for “creating…
Anarchy and Democracy
Fighting Fascism
Markets Not Capitalism
The Anatomy of Escape
Organization Theory