I’ve been an anarchist for 20 years. In that time, I’ve never mistaken any ounce of opposition as anything but various proportions and mixes of ignorance, fear, hand wringing, laziness, parasitism, elitism, and most common of all: abject stupidity—by which I mean the other 90% of the opposition; who are: those who’ve never once questioned the status quo at moment of birth in their entire, insipid lives. They’re content to live a lazy, ignorant life of automatic, knee-jerk regurgitating: every dumbass thing they were ever taught by dumbass, ignorant parents, grandparents, teachers, friends—only ever repackaging them in some latest, mindless bromide they saw on the Internet with lots of “Likes” from equally ignorant, stupid regurgitators.
Here’s the key to identifying them: they always seek to be judged by the feelings they display for everyone to see, manifest in the packaged bromides they regurgitate. They resist being judged on their actual deeds.
We live in stupid times. But not everyone, of course. That’s why I have a blog. It’s not so much about the futile endeavor of fixing stupid, but to energize thoughtful, independent thinkers and just hope that Darwin is enough to take care of the rest.
Let’s do an object lesson with running commentary in-line, from a place where the city government is so incompetent they literally can’t even be trusted to take out the trash: Detroit, Michigan.
The language of budget cuts, austerity, and sequestration seem to dominate the media’s landscape these days, instilling fear into Americans of vital government services being cut and chaos ensuing if governments aren’t allowed to spend and borrow infinitely. Conservatives decry supposed cuts to the military-industrial-complex, and liberals bemoan that without government welfare transfer programs, there would be social Darwinism. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) even blamed the Benghazi scandal on — wait for it — budget cuts and the sequester.
I was laughing my ass off while driving up to do a camping thing for the weekend, Friday. Seems the “sequester” (sounds ominous, huh?) resulted in many federal employees getting a 4-day weekend: Friday off too, without pay. Accordingly, on the “news,” they did a round-robin of breathless soundbites about how having federal offices closed for a single extra day would reign down hellfire on Earth—from a license for “big business” to pollute (EPA was closed Friday) to how a person living on the street in LA was on the living-on-street day that broke the camel’s back (HUD was closed Friday). So reconsider how hyperbolic my lede actually is, when this was “National News” and it’s done this way because, well, see my lede.
Detroit is absolutely bankrupt. The city faces a cash shortfall of more than $100 million by June 30. Long-term liabilities, including pensions, exceed $14 billion. Michigan Governor Rick Snyder wants to bail out Detroit’s city government even further. Thanks to the financial situation of Detroit, emergency services like police and fire departments are being severely cut short. 911 is only taking calls during business hours. Homes have been abandoned making parts of the city look like a ghost town.
…And healthcare, and food production, and, and, security and policing…
Dale Brown and his organization, the Threat Management Center (TMC), have helped fill in the void left by the corrupt and incompetent city government. Brown started TMC in 1995 as a way to help his fellow Detroit citizens in the midst of a rise in home invasions and murders. While attempting to assist law enforcement, he found little but uninterested officers more concerned with extracting revenue through traffic tickets and terrorizing private homes with SWAT raids than protecting person and property. [em-phasis, meng!]
You don’t say! You mean equipping GI Joe Wannabes with fashions and guns and giving them monopoly power to wield force and then charging them to produce revenues via fines on peaceful citizens for violating an endless array of municipal statutes—all while pretending to be tough guys, though spending 99% of their time safely harassing peaceful people—yields predictable results, including determining the character of the sort of people who seek to be enforcer-jobholders in the first place?
You. Don’t. Say.
In an interview with Copblock.org, Brown explains how and why his private, free market policing organization has been so successful. The key to effective protection and security is love, says Brown, not weapons, violence, or law. It sounds a bit corny, yes, but the results speak for themselves.
Almost 20 years later and Detroit’s financial mess even more apparent, TMC now has a client base of about 1,000 private residences and over 500 businesses. Thanks to TMC’s efficiency and profitability, they are also able to provide free or incredibly low-cost services to the poor as well.
…But who will help Teh Porez? Well isn’t it ironic? The same cops who prey on the relatively wealthy in their cars and in their businesses to raise revenues, the heads they bust most often are the poor people without the means to defend themselves in the legal system that is out of their reach.
Hey, how about that? Free healthcare? Are we altogether sure that’s not just the age-old antagonism between doctors and lawyers coming to head, with the latter holding the legislative upper hand? How come there’s no calls for free legal services so that the poor, without adequate access, can have the best PLAINTIFF representation money can buy? Don’t we need a federal Legacare Bill, with an agency to determine appropriate billable hours and rates?
The reasons TMC has been so successful is because they take the complete opposite approach that government agencies, in this case law enforcement, do. Brown’s philosophy is that he would rather hire people who see violence as a last resort, and the handful of Detroit police officers who actually worked with Brown in the earlier years and have an interest in genuine protection now work for TMC. While governments threaten their citizens with compulsion, fines, and jail if they don’t hand over their money, TMC’s funding is voluntary and subject to the profit-loss test; if Brown doesn’t provide the services his customers want, he goes out of business.
This means that Brown is not interested in no-knock para-military SWAT raids, “officer safety” as the highest priority, bloated union pensions, or harassing people for what they have in their bloodstream. TMC works with its customers on the prevention of crime as well rather than showing up after the fact to take notes like historians. [yeaz, emphacizin’]
This is all elementary. You know who are the stupidest people in terms of anarchist human animal living? Randian Objectivists. That’s right. But it’s no surprise, because most of them are kinda ivory tower, intellectual types and/or simple elitists with an irrational fear of the unwashed masses. Or; Rand worshippers, and she said anarchy was evil and that’s gospel forevermore.
The unstupid who are nonetheless admirers of Rand have been saying for longer than the 20 years I’ve been saying it that businesses run like businesses. Protection agencies aren’t “competing over greater force,” as anyone familiar with such inanity has heard a million times. They’re competing over satisfied customers, primarily; efficient cost management secondarily, such that they can offer more of what customers want—stupid: that’s PREVENTION OF CRIME—at the lowest cost possible…to either beat the competition or make it more naturally difficult for new competitors to enter the market.
I’m not done. Surely, if someone other than the state can build a good road and defend your sorry, lazy ass at a decent price, you’d still need government to get you around here and there on teh rodez, especially if you’re one of Teh Porez who spends his money on meth instead of cars & gas. C’mon, meng. You need “public transportation.”
…As just another lesson in undercutting your lazy, automatic thinking, consider how “public transportation” is a loaded concept that begs the question. To wit:
Law enforcement isn’t the only “essential government service” that the private sector is taking over and flourishing in. The Detroit Bus Company (DBC) is a private bus service that began last year and truly shows a stark contrast in how the market and government operates. Founded by 25-year-old Andy Didorosi, the company avoids the traditionally stuffy, cagey government buses and uses beautiful vehicles with graffiti-laden exterior designs that match the heart of the Motor City. There are no standard bus routes; a live-tracking app, a call or a text is all you need to get picked up in one of their buses run on soy-based biofuel. All the buses feature wi-fi, music, and you can even drink your own alcohol on board! The payment system is, of course, far cheaper and fairer. [BYOB]
Comparing this company’s bus service to say, my local San Francisco MUNI transit experience, is like comparing the services of local, free-range, organic farms in the Bay Area to the Soviet bread lines. [Now that the USSR has crashed and burned, and “The Land of the Free” is showing its wear, distinctions just aren’t what they used to be]
Not at all surprisingly…
Not surprisingly, the city government, which has no time to protect its citizens, does manage to find the time to harass peaceful citizens in this spontaneous, market order. Charles Molnar and a couple of other students from the Detroit Enterprise Academy wanted to help make benches for the city’s bus stops, where long-waits are the norm, equipped with bookshelves to hold reading material.
Detroit Department of Transportation officials quickly said the bench was “unapproved” and had it taken down. Silly citizens, don’t you know only governments can provide these services?
Who’s gonna build a rodez?
It’s all not all, y’all. Just tip-o’-the-‘burg.
The TMC and the DBC are just two of the larger, more visible examples of the market and voluntary human cooperation reigning in Detroit. “Food rebels,” running local community gardens, are an alternative to Big Agriculture and government-subsidized factory farms. Private parking garages are popping up. Detroit residents are using Lockean homesteading principles to repurpose land amongst the rubble of the Fed-induced housing bubble. Community events like Biergartens and large, civic dining gatherings (with no permits or licenses!) are being organized privately. Even Detroit’s artists are beginning to reflect this anarchic, peaceful movement in their artwork.
How on Earth could human animals possibly survive and prosper without everyone trying to live at the expense of everyone else by means of favoring their favorite agents of force?
Detroit’s city government may be in shambles financially, but the citizens of Detroit are showing what happens when people are given their liberty back. For centuries, libertarians have been arguing for strict limits on state power, the benefits of private, civic society, and the bottom-up, spontaneous order that arises where free markets and voluntary interactions dominate. Perhaps we shouldn’t be so scared and sicken with political Stockholm Syndrome the next time politicos fear-monger over budgets cuts.
The takeaway here is that no revolution is required. That’s critically important, because revolution, apart from killing people for the sake of the Nomenclatura who’ll eventually take over anyway, has a 100% failure record (it’s just that Americans appear to be the last to get that memo—1776 is a failure!). People merely need to get together in small, local, personal venues and see to their own shit cooperatively, endeavoring to produce more value than one’s own needs require.
Human evolutionary success—that saw it migrate to all corners of the globe unlike any other animal that ever existed on the planet—is explained very most fundamentally by this: we have an intellectual/emotional urge—call it pride if you like—I likee—to produce more than is required for our own selves, and we do it because we love other human animals in multi-faceted ways. We’ve solidly transcended the animalistic urge to see every other human animal as either a potential fuck, or a potential I could be fucked.
This was all fundamentally part of my 9-part series, Anarchy Begins at Home. It’s. Simple. Pimple.
- We’re animals.
- We can think in symbolic concepts, create metaphors and hierarchies of knowledge (epistemology).
- There is a distinct difference between what ancient wild human animals based their knowledge upon and what modern domesticated human animals base their knowledge upon.
- That quality of knowledge matters materially and has myriad consequences. It’s the difference between the natural ability to survive and prosper in the wild, and the pathetic need to live in an urban zoo, such that everyone who can possibly help you survive and prosper is in range of texting capability.
- Additionally, there is a distinct difference between true social power that comes from a small circle of those who recognize a leader’s abilities and interest in furthering his life by being a value to his small social tribe, and two elite sociopath parasites seeking your vote, with everyone making meaningless distinctions over it, and everyone publicly masturbating behind a curtain every 2-4 years.
- Anarchy Begins at Home.
- Even Detroit, Michigan.
For an 18-minute talk that summarized that 9-part series, there’s my Ancestral Health Symposium presentation from last year at Harvard. About 18 minutes.