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How is anarchy in any way desirable?

–2 votes
With billions of people, we cant just up and say 'do what you want'. There are too many people to trust everyone and act civil. When everyone is so different, problems and conflict will happen, and when there are no consequences, people would just murder and rape without hesitation.

How would the weak (young, sick, old) defend themselves/provide for themselves? They would simply be killed or starve to death. If people depended on family or friends for defense, then gangs would form, and more people mean more power, so the largest gangs would just conquer smaller ones, just like ancient tribes were always at war. Anarchy would create a kill or be killed world.
How would beneficial technology progress, like space exploration and modern medicine that saves millions of lives?
It seems like there would be more problems under anarchy than under a state, which exists because we've evolved and adapted from hunter-gather society.
asked Aug 31, 2013 by anonymous

1 Answer

+3 votes
i appreciate your question, since it clearly comes from a real newcomer to anarchist thought.
there are many many books that address the assumptions in your question, but simply put...
a) how people respond when they are held accountable for their own actions would be/has been different from when there is an outside agency that is supposed to monitor everyone;
b) who monitors the monitors? (ie, you apparently think the system works now, but there is evidence everywhere that it doesn't);
c) the idea that space exploration is beneficial (to anything except imaginations that have been stunted in other ways), or that medicine helps more people than it and its effects harm is effectively refuted in many anarchist circles;
d) anarchy wouldn't exactly be a situation of "do what you want". but whatever limits on behavior existed would be more accessible and human-scale than the global, international, national (lack of) influence we can have now as individuals or small groups of people;
e) the idea that people will murder and rape unless laws stop them is sad, and hasn't been my experience at all. there will always be people who murder and rape, of course, but they do now. i'm betting that the system that creates alienation from the world and each other, a sense of powerlessness and rage, is at fault for many actions that i want to stop. changing the system, and encouraging people to defend themselves and their own families and friends seems more appropriate and effective then paying a group of people to maintain order mostly for the benefit of the rich, and the status quo.

if you're actually interested in this question, let us know. i'm sure that people here will have lots of suggestions for good things to read.
answered Aug 31, 2013 by dot (50,520 points)
I appreciate that you took the time to actually respond to this compilation of straw person arguments lol. To a lot of statists it seems like the 3 missions of statism are to stop murder and rape, protect the weak, and colonizing Mars...yeah, that's probably the biggest 3 things the State does that I can think of, that's where all the money goes right?
I admire your patience to distill the numerous bad faith and rhetorical questions into a pithy (and sincere!) response. Well done.

online, one is never just responding to the immediate questioner.

(also, "we will assume good faith. until we don't". ;) )