[extropy-chat] Anarchy?

Technotranscendence neptune at superlink.net
Fri Apr 20 11:36:56 UTC 2007

On Thursday, April 19, 2007 7:09 PM A B austriaaugust at yahoo.com wrote:
> "> I'd be in favor of a system of anarchy promoting
> > increasingly
> > effective cooperation.  Does that count?"
> I suppose (at this stage) it would depend on whether
> or not that promotion took the form of enforced laws.
> Based on our ongoing discussions I'm currently
> presuming that it would (but please correct me if I'm
> mistaken). The type of Anarchy I was thinking of was a
> true absence of laws, but I'm certainly interested in
> hearing any variations.

I think it's helpful to distinguish between anarchy, social chaos, and
anomie.  Of course, usually, the three are conflated.  However, I think
it's best to think of the former as a society where there's no ruler -- 
not one where there are no rules.  Social choas and anomie, however, are
where there are no rules -- no laws per se -- not even laws derived from
free interaction.

Some thinkers, such as Robert Ellickson in his _Order Without Law: How
Neighbors Settle Disputes_, would also distinguish between a society
without a ruler and without formal rules.  In his study of Shasta
County, CA, Ellickson finds that neighbors often settle disputes without
resorting to formal laws -- even when such formal laws would give them a
pecuniary advantage.  Given this distinction, one can imagine an
anarchist society that's anal about formal rules and one that's much
more like Ellickson's Shasta County.  (My view is real world anarchies
would fall somewhere in between, though tilt toward the informal side
simply because even inside "archies" people usually behave informally if
not anarchically.)


    See "Free Market Anarchism: A Justification" at:

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