Mutualism: The Philosophy of Anarchy 4.88/5 (8)

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This was composed for a speech given to the East Texas Freethinkers
on February 18th, 2017 in Tyler, Texas.
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Mutualism is an anarchist social philosophy first established in print by Pierre-Joseph Proudhon. While often considered to be the father of mutualism (something I have repeated and am apt to do again), Proudhon was actually more of its first philosopher, because mutualism already existed to some degree, long before Proudhon would write about it in his works. Proudhon had spent time among the workman’s associations in Lyon, France, where he witnessed fraternal organizations and guilds functioning in mutualistic manners, involving member control from voluntary participants. When he wrote in favor of mutualism, he probably had these cooperative associations in mind. Nonetheless, Proudhon can be considered to be the first philosophical exponent of mutualism as (more…)

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Self-Critical Reflections on Community Organizing Be the first to rate this post!

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As I have written in my most recent article, I have been organizing for quite some time. 14 years to be precise: six years with the IWW (Industrial Workers of the World), a revolutionary labor union, and eight years with the Black Cat Collective, a mutual aid collective, more than two of which were spent organizing the People’s Arcane School, a peer instructed school of mysticism, science, and philosophy. To put things in perspective, between the IWW and Black Cat Collective, we had a General Assembly scheduled for every month, wherein we scheduled many other committee meetings to do more focused work, such as organizing events and community resources. 14 years times 12 months per year is 168 General Assemblies that were scheduled. Granted, a few of those were skipped due to holidays or member hardships, and I missed a smaller (more…)

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My Roots in the Radical Community 5/5 (3)

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My run-in with radical thought occurred when I was in my first year of eighth grade (a few years before I dropped out of highschool, the best choice I ever made), in the form of punk rock. A friend of mine had turned me on to punk rock, and I had gotten interested in bands like Pennywise, Propagandhi, Refused, Crass, Aus Rotten, and a large number of other bands that promoted free thought and anarchy. Soon enough I would be playing in bands of my own, as a drummer. My time spent playing in bands culminated firstly in Druids on Parade, a hardcore punk band that sounded something along the lines of a mix between The Adolescents and Dag Nasty, and then in Division of Power, which was also a hardcore punk band, though it had a little more melody, and (more…)

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The Prefigurative Revolution of Geo-Mutualist Panarchism 5/5 (4)

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 Introduction

A geo-mutualist panarchy would constitute a completely different society from the one we have today. As such, it is necessary to discuss the general approach by which such a society could be brought about. This will be a brief outline of the prefigurative institutions geo-mutualist panarchists wish to utilize in dual power struggle for the purpose of revolutionary gradualism. It will end with a description of how it can be applied.

Geo-Mutual Panarchist Methods of Societal Transformation

Geo-mutualist panarchists are not reformists. That is, we do not believe that the system of coercive hierarchy can be changed by appealing to those in power. Instead, geo-mutualist panarchists practice direct-action. Direct-action is an action which is taken without appealing to an intermediary, such as a politician, a boss, or someone else (more…)

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Capitalism and Republics: A Mutual Relationship 5/5 (2)

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 Introduction

 Many want to change the world, but few care to do the work of understanding it. If one wants to change the current paradigm, one first must come to an understanding of how it operates. One of the most crucial things to understand is the manner in which republican forms of government and capitalist varieties of economy are mutually-reinforcing. Without such an understanding, one is tempted to reform various aspects of the system, never realizing the futility of such an approach. It is not possible to challenge capitalism with the present electoral system, without shifting it instead toward state socialism, which is no more—perhaps less—desirable. Nor is it possible to change the present system of representative government while using a currency that is supplied by its chartered banks. The two (more…)

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Henocentrism and the Grayscale of Anarchism 4/5 (8)

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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 (more…)

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The Geo-Mutualist Treatment of Markets and Democracy 4.29/5 (7)

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The common form of government in Western nations is the republic, and the prevalent form of economy is capitalism. By republican government, I am referring especially to the system of representative democracy, wherein periodic elections decide on individuals to make decisions on behalf of the public. By capitalism, I am referring to an economic system in which private property—as opposed to personal or cooperative property—[1] is dominant, and that property earns a return above cost, such as interest, profit, or rent. It is common for Western nations to have republican governments, wherein elected representatives make decisions on behalf of the population, and capitalist economies, wherein private firms compete for profits. These political and economic systems are not all alike, but come in many varieties, from parliamentary to congressional republics and from (more…)

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Mutualism, Cost, and the Factors of Production: Terminology of Geo-Mutualist Economics 4/5 (2)

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The Factors of Production

Without understanding the terminology and the associated definitions as ideology uses, it is impossible to understand the ideology itself. Geo-mutualism is no exception to this rule. Some of the more important terms that geo-mutualists may use relate to matters of economics, particularly what are called the factors of production and their returns.

A factor of production is an element of creating goods and services. These include land, labor, and capital. Two of these factors are absolutely necessary to production—land and labor—while it is quite unthinkable today to go without the third, capital. All economic production is done with a combination of these factors, and none other.

Labor includes all human time or effort, mental and manual. This includes strenuous forms of labor, and passive forms of (more…)

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Mutualism, Emergence, and the Right of Increase 4.67/5 (3)

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Mutualism can be understood to be distinct from both capitalism and communism, while maintaining elements of each. Mutualism’s most-celebrated founder, Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, was interested in the manner in which theses and antitheses synthesize, and in which antinomies may come to balance one another. Mutuality, or reciprocity, forever approximates this place of synthesis or balance. This places mutualism between capitalism and communism.

One of the fundamental values of mutualist political economy is the idea that prices should be dictated by voluntary costs alone. This is known as the cost-principle, which states “cost the limit of price.” Cost is effort, manual or physical. Any price paid to get someone to work— wages— covers cost. Profit, rent, and interest are prices paid above cost, because they are not payments for work, but for having (more…)

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History and the State 4.6/5 (5)

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The geo-mutualist panarchist interpretation of history is important for its theory of progress. Rather than, as many anarchists, holding a defeatist and determinist attitude toward history, geo-mutualist panarchists embrace the changes in history, and seek to understand them, in order to influence history further.

Geo-mutualist panarchists understand prehistoric, historic, and contemporary hunter-gatherers, and simple horticultural people to largely constitute stateless peoples. Hunter-gatherers and early horticultural people were always on the move, and, as such, could not maintain large surpluses with which to govern a society. In order for authority to establish itself internal to a society, there must be some form of accumulated wealth. At some point, economic rents had started to affect the balance of societies, and some horticulturalists had gained comparative advantages in their land holdings. These societies, which wielded a surplus (more…)

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