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0 votes
When one hears the word "politics" how does it make you feel?
by (120 points)
Read M.Bakunin's "Politics and the state". He has made it clear.

2 Answers

+4 votes
Overall, uninterested.

As I understand politics, it is the business of negotiating and maneuvering within a political system, or adapting that system to one's desires, whether that system (or the desired system) is totalitarian, democratic or otherwise, and that is not my bag. I see a difference between the political and the social.

One of the things I have appreciated about recent anarchist thinking has been the strain that focus on being anti-political, which, to my thinking sets us apart from Republicans, Libertarians (as they are understood in the US), Democrats, Socialists, Communists, Fascists, and so forth - all of those tendencies seek to gain political power, whereas anarchists (at least the ones I respect) seek to destroy political power altogether.

This is a short answer, but I hope clear. Please let me know if you want to know more.
by (22.1k points)
0 votes
As usual, it all depends on how you define the word. 'Polis,' the root word in 'politics,' literally means "city-state." So politics is the science of organizing a town or a society. Anarchists too often equate politics with statism, but in this light, any anarchist who advocates a specific societal framework is a politician. I know, it makes me shudder too.

Obviously anarchists detest statist politics, but I think every anarchist has her own opinion of how society should or could be structured. Ah, but there's a problem: anarchy at its core is decidedly anti-social. It is an individual rebellion against current forms, not a plan for future ones. It is negation, not prescription.

Even speaking optimistically, a perfectly conceived anarchist society would still present modes of behavior that would eventually contradict some individual's tastes and desires. What then? Rebellion of course.

So politics from an anarchist perspective is a means to an end, but never an end in itself. It may benefit the individual from time to time--even the state does that [gasp]--but a free person will always have his gun at the ready.
by (1.6k points)