Monday, March 11, 2013

In Response to Christopher on Logic

This is in response to a post by an anarchist without adjectives about the logic concerned with those that believe in Anarcho-Capitalism. I believe his post has a lot of merit and a lot to add to the discussion of a stateless society. The post can be found here. I hope a lively discussion can continue from all of this.

His argument starts from giving a little tutorial on logical constructs, something he is correct about and I have no problem with. His tutorial is over sufficiency and necessity and how they are used. His examples for necessity are that for "john is a bachelor" to be true he must be a male, married, and an adult, these are NECESSARY conditions in order for the first statement to be true. As for sufficiency one can say that "john is a bachelor" and by saying that it is a SUFFICIENT condition to say that john is a man. He also makes this statement.
Now let's evaluate how these two concepts work together. A condition can be either necessary or sufficient without being the other. For instance, being a mammal (Q) is necessary but not sufficient to being human (P). A condition can also be both necessary and sufficient.
A good lesson over what he is about to lay out.

We must remember that all attacks on the definition of some term is always stemmed from ones own belief of what that word really means. Many people identify themselves as libertarians but we don't all agree on what libertarian means and many of us with the general same goal stick our nose up at other "not really libertarians". Christopher's attack is based off his (and others) definition of what anarchism is based off history and their own subjective beliefs. AnCaps do not fit the definition he has for anarchism therefore they are not anarchists.

Christopher does not go bashing on AnCaps and their beliefs he merely asserts that they are not the anarchists they claim to be by his standards. From his article it seems that he defines anarchism as both the opposition of state authority and capitalist hierarchy. He claims that since AnCaps only oppose state authority they only have a necessary but not sufficient condition to call themselves anarchists.

With his definition of anarchism you cannot disagree with him that AnCaps aren't anarchists as he defines it. But I question the logical consistency of any form of anarchism even from the left leaning side. Christopher quite brilliantly balks at the logic behind how AnCaps oppose the State and not private property or as he says
to turn the bad ("ultimate decision-making power over a given area" The State ) into the good ("ultimate decision-making power over a given area" A private individual).
Bold added by me

It is something I have never thought of in terms of logical consistency and I truly believe this point alone is engaging and is the purpose of me wanting to respond because it truly made me think about my position. But do not worry fellow voluntarists I have not stepped away from my beliefs as I am still a market anarchist! I think there is much merit to that point but I also think it can be used to attack left leaning anarchists logically.

That is because at its core if the "ultimate decision-making power over a given area" where that area is my body and the land my feet lay upon is not given to me to whom can claim it? If not the person whose mind has total control it must be either someone else or a group others. Rothbard lays this out in many of his books starting from an island populated only by Crusoe and then going to Crusoe and Friday. If Crusoe does not have the ownership over his body then it must belong to Friday or a group of unknown people. As left leaning anarchism is typically defined as common ownership of scarce resources then it follows that every person on Earth "owns" all the scarce resources. This now holds that every person on Earth has "the ultimate decision-making power over a given area" where that given area is Earth itself. Every person on Earth has power over every other person on Earth therefore IT also fails to be sufficient to his definition of anarchy since there really would be no opposition to power.

The question then becomes whom should have the "ultimate decision-making power over a given area"? The individual whom has the control over his own body or a group of individuals, be it a State or whole group of individuals?

I'm sure you know my answer.

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