Sunday, September 23, 2012

How do we get a voluntary society?

In my previous post, I put the word "let's" in the title, as if the achievement of anarchy were something that we could do in any of our lifetimes.  However, when I think of the two routes for our future, the outlook is grim:
  • If we have a quick collapse, I imagine people are going to want to set up local governments and gather armies to preemptively "defend" their homeland and rights (eg. to water) because they're afraid for their future.  (In contrast, members of a voluntary society will depend on persuasion rather than force to get what they want.)
  • If we have a gradual decline in central authority, the outlook could be better because people will slowly have to get used to working out their own solutions, but as I look at the trend in America (and other nations) it seems that people are choosing more authoritarianism the more they feel uncertain, so they spiral down the whirlpool of feeding the beast.

Basically, people's biggest argument to me is that "people cannot handle it," and I think they're not far off, but not for the reasons they think: people would do better than we suppose, but most are afraid of the idea that someone's not "in charge" or "doing something" and so they'll try to put up another government... even the ones that are self-sufficient would join the gang -- not because people wouldn't handle it but because of their fear that other people wouldn't handle it.

So maybe we'll never get there.  But I've gotta try.

Basically, it'll be a lot of work to show examples and change the majority mindset over time.  (Hm... I wonder if society will stay stable enough for these ideas to propagate!  Well, I've got to act as if they will.)  Seems I've got company in this opinion: here are calls for "gradualism" and for "methodology (not creeds)".  (Although I, like Rothbard, would gladly jump to the final goal if given the chance.)

So let's get pragmatic: let's spread around the activities that'll help us get there.  Join me there, and I'll join with you.

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