Mutualism and Anarchism Without Adjectives/Hyphens
Mutualism is undeniably a variety of anarchism, as classical anarchism finds its home in the philosophy of Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, the first to describe himself as such. The same cannot be said of capitalism or communism. While both have claimants to anarchism on their side, each equally declares the other incompatible with anarchism. Mutualism does not face such a hardship, but—while facing some irrational challenges from both ends— actually finds allies to both sides. “Anarcho”-capitalists and “anarcho”-communists—at least the educated among them— generally maintain no hard feelings toward mutualism, but see mutualism as historical anarchism, even if slightly annoying (because it is so hard to understand).
It has been a common approach throughout the years to attempt to overlook the differences behind the different kinds of anarchists—real and obscure— and to embrace a philosophy of “anarchism without adjectives” or “anarchism without hyphens.” The general idea is that those who consider themselves anarchists should find one another mutually tolerable, and even to gain from each other’s views, if possible. This view works quite well for dogmatic views, such as those held by capitalists and communists who also consider themselves to be anarchists. Holding to such a view is certainly an improvement, but is no end in itself, or a pure understanding of anarchism.
By reducing anarchism to simple preferences, one must treat political economy under the terms of metaphysical idealism, a libertarian free will philosophy, which suggests that one can do anything they put their mind to. This ignores the positive reality which we share, which keeps some ideologies from ever coming into practice. One cannot ride a unicorn because the natural laws of biology forbid it, and one cannot be a communist or a capitalist and an anarchist because the natural laws of political economy forbid it. “Anarchism without adjectives” would have us believe in fairy-tales, that capitalism and communism are compatible with anarchy, as if unicorns are compatible with natural science. Anarchy is mutuality, and that is all that needs to be said in definition. Mutuality precludes communism, but not communes; capitalism, but not capital.
While maintaining a “without adjectives/hyphens” approach is likely quite healthy for “anarcho”-capitalists and –communists, the same cannot be said of the undisputable claimant to anarchism. Mutualism, which is anarchism pure, can only become diluted, or watered-down, by accepting such an ideology as “without adjectives/hyphens.” However, this is not so much because mutualism distinguishes itself from the others in a hard sense, but because mutualism—anarchism pure—already incorporates the anarchic elements of both capitalism and communism, including free markets and industrial democracy. In this sense, mutualism is anarchy, and anarchy already includes a wide-range of choices, some individualistic and others communistic. To accept an “anarchy without adjectives/hyphens,” as a mutualist, is to suggest that mutualism does not already complete the project, while it does. Mutualism allows for sufficient individualism as well as collectivism, without needing to tolerate the dogmas of capitalism or communism.
The Grayscale of Anarchism
Accepting capitalists and communists as anarchists, when anarchy was originally the balancing of the two, is like if someone were to mix black and white and come up with gray, but then someone were to start calling white “gray” too. Obviously, gray is a word to distinguish between both white and black, and so calling white “gray” makes no sense. The same is true of anarchism. Anarchism—mutualism— was a balance of the forces of communism and capitalism (this is according to Proudhon himself), and so to call one of the forces being balanced “anarchism” is simply a crock of shit, which serves to dilute anarchism.
That said, it could be argued that white, black, and gray exist on a gradient, and that some grays are closer to black, and some are closer to white. Even still, it is possible to establish a middle range which could be used as a standard for true gray, and this is mutualism. This brings us to the geo-mutualist panarchist system of henocentric law, and its mechanism of ascension.
In the geo-mutualist panarchist model of henocentric law, there is a central organization which is created for the purpose of facilitating fair decentralization. This organization uses the tools of mutual credit and land-sharing to issue credit and territory to its member-organizations. In other words, member organizations, which may be communist, capitalist, or what-have-you join a central body that issues them land and credit. In this way, the central body is established in order to provide the means for decentralization. Most of the real management decisions will occur on the land issued to the member-organizations by the central body.
Another way of looking at the setup is that the tools of geo-mutualism (classical mutualism, that is) are being used by capitalists, communists, etc. In a way, a capitalist member-organization would also be softly geo-mutualist, at least in practice. It is also conceivable, and in fact promoted, that a more thoroughly geo-mutualist organization will form, and will compete economically with the others. The overall structure would allow for any form of economy, and one of these economies may be geo-mutualist in practice, a microcosm reflecting the macrocosm.
Another gradient is made apparent in the geo-mutualist system. This gradient ranges from soft to hard geo-mutualism, within a larger panarchy. Soft geo-mutualism would include those capitalist and communist member-organizations participating in the henocentric system of the geo-mutualist panarchy. Hard geo-mutualism would entail a member-organization that also practices geo-mutualism more specifically within the larger and more general panarchy. With this being so, one can view geo-mutualism in an emanationist manner.
Geo-Mutualist Panarchy as Emanation
According to some views of emanationism, God is Being, and, as such, represents both the whole and the center. The center represents a sort of fullness or completeness of Being, while Being permeates the whole, if not with the same intensity. As an example, consider a shining light. At the source of the light, it is very bright and dense, and further away it gets dimmer and scattered. Emanationists believe that God, in the same way, is the source of the light as well as the light itself. In this way, God is the center (the Source) and the whole. If you can imagine a light in a dark room, we can imagine further that the light represents existence, or Being, itself, and the dark room represents non-Being. As the light scatters, it moves from Being toward non-Being, without ever actually diminishing. Commonly stated according to emanationists, one pursues Being (unhindered existence) by getting closer to the Source. Another way to understand what is being said here is that God is everywhere, is everything, but that there is a manner in which, though we are not separate from God, we may become closer to God in some sense. You can imagine this “thing getting closer to itself” as contracting, in an objective sense, or self-understanding, in the subjective sense. A return to the Source (which I understand in terms of physics to be a singularity) is necessarily a contraction, or a clearer understanding (nothing beyond knowing) of Self.
Now, applied to political economy, we may understand geo-mutualist panarchism as being a sort of cosmic center, which all things move to and from, while also being the grounds of their being. As described above, a geo-mutualist panarchy would allow for various different kinds of political and economic systems to play out, which is similar to God capturing all that exists in the grounds of Being, including the fragments, furthest from the Source. However, as geo-mutualism can be expected to evolve as a macro-system from republican capitalism or its successor, maintaining capitalist and communist member-organizations, it can expect to further mature as a micro-system, without the need for compulsion. In other words, as the geo-mutualist panarchist confederation can be expected to compete against the current republican-capitalist state, geo-mutualist anarchist member-organizations can be expected to compete against the communist and capitalist member-organizations, and come out on top. This is so because mutualist economics naturally approach equilibrium, and suffer neither scarcity nor surplus. This being so, geo-mutualist economies will tend toward better health, and will tend toward replication. This power for geo-mutualism to compete in the selective processes of the market and the social atmosphere, ensures that all will be drawn toward it, as a political telos. If we consider Being to be synonymous with success, we may also associate telos with Being. In this way, geo-mutualist panarchism is both the whole, or grades of Being, which includes other subsystems, and the center, a subsystem which draws the others into it, a fullness of Being, or a telos. That is, geo-mutualist panarchism, while grandfathering the other systems, has Becoming built into it, and nurtures this evolutionary process within its wholeness toward this mature end. It is this which will allow geo-mutualist panarchism to be established in the first place, to capture the momentum of the other groups toward its final ends.
Anarchist Philosophies in the Grades of Being
We can see that, politically and economically, geo-mutualist panarchism shares a strong relationship with emanationist pantheism, such as the dualist pantheism I espouse. Emanationists see God as both the cosmic whole and the center, and geo-mutualist panarchists wish to establish a confederation governed by the whole, and a member-organization, or cultural phenomenon, which draws all others toward it. As this is the political future, it is the act of becoming, toward pure Being.
If we understand geo-mutualist panarchism this way, we may understand “anarchism without adjectives/hyphens,” “anarcho”-capitalism and –communism, and various other political philosophies to exist on a gradient, with geo-mutualist panarchism representing the place nearest the Source, and the others stuck in the emanation between Being and non-Being. Geo-mutualist p/anarchism (which is really beefed-up classical mutualism) represents Being, because it maintains the fewest detractors, while the extremes (“anarcho”-communism and –capitalism) contradict one another, taking away from their Being. They do not Realize one another. Mutualism, from both sides, is considered a form of anarchism, and is Realized, while neither side on the extreme considers the other a variety of anarchism, but a form of statism. We may place (geo-) mutualism, then, at the top of a three-tiered pyramid, labeled “undisputed anarchism.” Beneath it, we may put “disputed anarchism,” wherein “anarcho”-capitalism and –communism, as well as “anarchism without adjectives/hyphens,” are placed. Below that, of course, we find “undisputed statism,” with all self-professed statists. The top represents full Being, or telos, and the bottom the nearest one can be to non-Being without ceasing to Be. The goal is to move toward the top, which will allow for human flourishing. In compliment to my project of henocentric law, I call this political or legal henosis.
Geo-Mutualist Panarchy vs. Anarchism Without Adjectives/Hyphens
Geo-mutualist panarchism avoids the pitfalls of anarchism without adjectives/hyphens—dilution of truer forms of anarchism into a formless blob—while maintaining an inclusive atmosphere. It also goes further than anarchism without adjectives/hyphens, by including self-professed statists in its paradigm, instead of stopping at disputed anarchists, who are seen by others as statists.
Geo-mutualism avoids the pitfalls of anarchism without adjectives/hyphens by incorporating the other “anarchist” visions into a structure which recognizes the evolution of individual and collective consciousness, rather than treating them under the terms of “flatland,” wherein they are all treated as equal, when they are not at all equal in quality. As disputed anarchists, and not by opinion but by fact, “anarcho”-capitalists and –communists are at least partial statists. They are not on the same level as mutualism. However, it is nonetheless important to ally with these, and to use their momentum, and so they should be included in a panarchy, which will also tolerate thorough anarchism (mutualism). If we are going to include these partial statists, I argue, we may as well go ahead and include self-declared statists, as well, so long as they can agree to the terms of the panarchy. They’re not much more statist, in my opinion, than “anarcho”-communists or –capitalists. If we can capture their momentum, we can use it just as well to bring the panarchy into being. The panarchy, after all, is just fertile grounds for the growth of a more thorough anarchy (mutualism).
 One certainly doesn’t want to get caught in the vague, grey void that is “anarchism without adjectives/hyphens” without further definition. One may as well call oneself a “livingist” because one wants to be alive. Such a term tells us nothing of any substance, but that one believes their own preferences not to infringe on others. Whether this is true or not is not debatable, it is assumed that it is true, because the word anarchist has been used.