Wednesday, September 06, 2006

At Becca's request...

After today's discussion (which again, I thoroughly enjoyed), Becca asked if we could continue. So...

How about if you, the participants, frame the question from today's extravaganza that you would like to discuss. Enjoy. (And don't forget to catch up with the rest of your lives!)

50 Comments:

Blogger Kurt W. said...

Subject: Panic! at the Gov blog


Goodness, I don't check this place for a little while, and you guys comment like there is no tomorrow.
Alright, I'll break my silence with this post.

Today's discussion was interesting, to say the least. It is quite obvious that people have incredibly different views of anarchy. And therein lies the problem. As stated in class, if people have different views of how to get long without anyone in charge, then who's idea are people to follow? It seems impossible to not have one person, or group of people in charge. The only arguement to what I just said that I can think of is to say that people will naturally just follow "natural laws" once human laws are dissolved. There is an inherant problem in this ideal. Humans do not like to get along. It is human nature. Or natural sin for the Christians/Jews/Muslims. Or natural selection for the Atheists/Evolutionists. Or material worship (Non-enlightened) for Bhuddists. The interesting part of this arguement, is that if you do not agree with me, and argue my points, aren't you just proving my point?

P.S. I don't mean to sound arrogant with that last sentence. Just trying to end with a bang, not a whimper.

2:58 PM  
Blogger Katie said...

although I do think that a not having a government would be benificial. I just don't think it will happen because we do need someone to keep order and to keep people safe. If there is no government who will do that?

As much as we all would like it, there are bad people out there. We need some one to keep people in order, and any one who does end up taking the job of keeping the order there will be some form of government in place to serve this need.

3:03 PM  
Blogger DavidS4 said...

Wow, we proved today the usefulness of government, but I still intend to make the argument that there's no government like no government.

I still stick to my belief that the only pure form of anarchy is one person living on an island. Meyer brought up the point that if there were ample resources, any number of people could live without a government. Well, banking on natural human goodness any number of governmental systems could flourish (i.e. communism, republic, theocracy, monarchy). But all humans are vulnerable to greed. No matter how much food and land and women (or men) were put on that island for the general population, one person would try to take it all for himself. That is why I stick to the belief that a sandbox society (one man on an island) is the only succesful anarchy. He could do whatever he wanted whenever he wanted with no regard to the consequences from other inhabitants. The only lone corruption to him would be insanity, at which point he ight make up imaginary friends to hold his sand government.

But in the end, the benfits of the only anarchy far outweigh any of the ones presented by a traditional one (except for crippling lonliness). No government guarantees all civil liberties and freedoms, it keeps a stable economy, and is indestrucable in the realm of defense because there is no one to attack it. Of course the society I envision in entirely theoretical, ut it does allow more freedoms than any other government possible.

3:19 PM  
Blogger Kyle G said...

I believe that there is no way that humans could ever be without some sort of government, ever. One thing that Julie said, that anarchists believe that without government the good side of humans would rule, but like Julie said, chances are that the bad, not the good, would rule. I don't think that it is necessarily it is because humans are evil, but they are extremely competitive. I believe that it is this competition that will drive people to become better than others, and the "best" would eventually take command once again. I also agree with what Tyler said, that government would collapse and resurface, and stay in this pattern. I think that if we could get rid of government people would eventually want or (more likely) force it back into society. Then once again they would get tired of it and overthrow it again. But my point is, humans could not deal with the absence of government, ever, even if they do, for some reason, get rid of it they would soon bring it back. I think that the competitiveness of human nature prevents the dream of equality of all humans, and thus prevents the idea of anarchy.


Also, I just want to say, I don't see people overthrowing government, or even slowly destroying it. Rather, I think that government is going to become so large and powerful, that it will literally control our lives. Science-Fictiony, I know, but I see it happening.

3:20 PM  
Blogger Meghan L said...

For my own benefit I did a search on anarchy over the ever reliable Google to see the definitions that other sources give it.

I found that anarchy does not literally mean chaos, like I learned sophmore year. It simply means without a ruler.

To me, this distinction makes it even less likely that an anarchial society could ever exist among humans. Because all humans have different brains that process information differently, there will naturally be a leader and a follower. Some people think of bright ideas and step in to help and lead others who are not as naturally inclined. Thus, a ruler is born.

Something I mulled over in class today was the concept that, back in the day, people had a choice. Somewhere in the history of man a concious decision was made to establish government. In class today people said that there could never be an anarchy today, that is obvious. However I don't think there could ever have been anarchy. People long ago saw it necessary for some reason, be it for punishment, structure, or coordination, to form some type of government because of a need or demand for it.
It's almost like the setup of school is a miniture model of govt. If there wasn't a teacher in the front of the room directing the class, nothing would progress or be learned. And even when we have our fish bowls, the teacher provides resources, topics, and guidlines for the class to work off of. Occasionally when there is no teacher in the class, a student will rise up and fill in the leadership void.

There is no anarchy that can work with the diversity that human nature presents.

3:59 PM  
Blogger Meghan L said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

4:15 PM  
Blogger Sarah A said...

Oh man, I have so much fun talking about anarchy. Today's discussion in class was awesome, but there are a few things I wanted to hit on but didn't get a chance to.

First of all, in order to talk about anarchy you have to think about what constitutes "government" to you. When I talk about anarchy, I mostly think of a society in which there is no official government, officials or laws, however there still might be groups of people who cooperate to get things done (i.e. collectives). I think that in order to survive, anarchy would have to rely on the cooperation of the people, in order to supply all the people with the resources they need, as well as to preserve a sense of community that would be essential to keep people working for the good of their selves and their neighbors.

Secondly, when talking about anarchy I think people really underestimate themselves. Like I said in class, if tomorrow there were no laws, would you go around raping, stealing and murdering? I don't think I would. Why? Because I don't want to, because I know that its wrong, and because I know it would destroy the collective society. I don't think its only me who's on this moral high ground here--I think there are probably a lot of good people in the world who wouldn't do these things either just because there were suddenly no laws stopping them. And then, of course, there are those who would, but I think for the most part they are those who are doing it anyway despite the law. A society without laws is NOT by any means a society without morals. Even though there will always be a few bad apples, I think the number is much lower than many people would estimate it to be. Besides, there would still be ways of dealing with these "bad apples" in an anarchistic society, even without police. If somebody committed an immoral act (rape, theft, murder, assault, etc) people could easily decide not to cooperate or barter with that person, thereby effectively making it very hard for that person to survive in the society--hopefully resulting in their reform or their leaving altogether. Of course there would be no laws dictating what actions merit this kind of exclusion, it would be a personal choice up to the offender's peers to exclude him/her or not.

Aaaand finally, there's the issue of God (I'm not just bringing it up to be argumentative--I swear). Assuming you've removed all outside governing variables ("real" government, peers, social expectations, etc) isn't God the most basic form of government that we have? Even without other institutions telling people what to do, would people still follow the 10 commandments (rules) and behave in the way God dictates? So my REAL question is this: in order to be truly anarchistic, would a society have to be truly Atheistic as well?

I think I've said enough for now, so I'll get to answering my own question later.

4:26 PM  
Blogger Kurt W. said...

I really like what Sarah has said. I never thought of anarchy as just getting rid of ruling government as just getting rid of major authorities. It seems to me that she views things in kind of a tribal view (correst me if I'm wrong here Sarah). I do still see a problem with it though.

Even though there will always be a few bad apples, I think the number is much lower than many people would estimate it to be. Besides, there would still be ways of dealing with these "bad apples" in an anarchistic society, even without police. If somebody committed an immoral act (rape, theft, murder, assault, etc) people could easily decide not to cooperate or barter with that person, thereby effectively making it very hard for that person to survive in the society

If these people are to be "banished" from our harmonious society, then where do we send them? The whole world has to simultaneoulsy accept anarchy at the same time for it to work. And my other question is what happens when these social outcasts band together, and have the ability to wreak havoc on the rest of society who technically cannot punish them?

4:35 PM  
Blogger Hikingout said...

William Hea

First off there is a flaw in the morality argument.

The reason that people have similar moral values is from sharing religion and education. AN EDUCATION PROVIDED BY THE GOVERNMENT. It is impossible for anyone to say that people wouldn't go around raping and murdering because the murderers and rapers would not have the same moral, government-supplied education that we have. These activities are also practiced in an organized setting, so wouldn't it be reasonable to think that murder and rape would increase without the repurcussions supplied by a government?

Sarah, your commune anarchism is more like the final goal of communism than anarchy. In communism, a country goes through a set of phases becoming gradually more and more communistic, eventually ending in what you describe. Although it is a good idea, the main factor in communes is a unifying ideal, communism, something that would be supplied by the absolute minimalist government.

Sarah, you're right, atheism would be necessary for anarchy, communistic support of atheism seems to recognize this and although the final form of communism and anarchy are not the same, they are similar.

I am not a big fan with strict word definitions, probably becasue I have to deal with them too often in debate. Here is the full set of definitions from dictionary.com verifying that what we are talking about is anarchy.

an‧ar‧chy  /ˈænərki/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[an-er-kee] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation

–noun 1. a state of society without government or law.
2. political and social disorder due to the absence of governmental control: The death of the king was followed by a year of anarchy.
3. a theory that regards the absence of all direct or coercive government as a political ideal and that proposes the cooperative and voluntary association of individuals and groups as the principal mode of organized society.
4. confusion; chaos; disorder: Intellectual and moral anarchy followed his loss of faith.

4:56 PM  
Blogger marci said...

I think, in an ideal world, [just like an ideal marxist and/or communist society] no government would lead to an almost "brotherly love"-like civilization. I forget the name of the specific civilization I'm about to talk about, but they had designated farmers to making a surplus of wheat, another barley, another corn, etc, etc. If there was no currency, and everyone strove to aid everyone else, I see no need for a government at all.
of course, there will be that one person, the one who wants to rule it all, who will spread his ideas and ruin the perfect society created.
It has always happened in history; so i highly doubt a perfect anarchy-based society would ever exist.

7:45 PM  
Blogger EmilyR said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

8:05 PM  
Blogger EmilyR said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

8:09 PM  
Blogger Kristen said...

"The reason that people have similar moral values is from sharing religion and education. AN EDUCATION PROVIDED BY THE GOVERNMENT"

I'm pretty sure that my morals/religious beliefs did NOT come from school (aka education provided by the government). They came from my parents, my friends, my life experiences, and who knows what else.

"It is impossible for anyone to say that people wouldn't go around raping and murdering because the murderers and rapers would not have the same moral, government-supplied education that we have" This statement kind of confuses me...so if I misinterpret it, I apologize. I doubt rape and murder statistics would increase in an anarchy. The people that commit rape and murder often have mental problems, among other complications. The number would probably stay around the same for both types of govts. I was also thinking about how sometimes people break rules... just to break rules. I'm not saying that this is the mindset of murderers and rapists, but any other law-breakers might be influenced by this.

Anything the government normally provides us might actually arise on its own in an anarchial (is that a word?) society. For example, a natural attribute of humans is curiosity... so, in a society devoid of a government, I assume people would still attempt to learn. Teachers would still arise, along with doctors interested in helping sick people, and perhaps firefighters as well. Of course there are flaws in my theory... but it is only a theory. I'm not educated enough on pyschology, or anything like that, so I'm making a lot of assumptions.

But unfortunately, as with all utopian-sounding societies, such perfection is hard to reach.

8:12 PM  
Blogger EmilyR said...

I appreciated what Mr. Meyer was saying in fourth hour about the island scenario. If the island had enough resources for everyone then Anarchy would be a viable option. Also going back to his point about the two year olds... (all the two years olds can play and be physically together without sharing or actually engaging with each other.) If every person can supply for himself or herself then there would be no need for "real" government. Wasn't government established to maintain the economy? So, if the economy maintains itself and everyone is provided for Anarchy would be an option.

HOWEVER...

We live in a world that cannot provide for all of its occupants thus Anarchy is illogical in our day unless we wanted to starve and then there would be no need for government anyway (so perhaps anarchy could work... hmmmm)

About the universal "truth" that someone will always establish himself as a leader, A well taken point although we must ask "what kind of leader?" Certainly there can be moral leaders that are not governmental rulers. Think Jesus, Mohammed, Mother of Theresa, almost all religious figures. They influence the way we act and in a way show what society COULD be but don't establish themselves as political leaders. They are only moral leaders. If there were people that were leaders of the morality of the society, that doesn't mean that there would be a government. They would show how good people can be, not how good people MUST be.

8:13 PM  
Blogger Sarah A said...

Kurt-
It's probably more likely that the outcasts would just form their own community instead of attack their old one. After all, if there are no leaders or authority figures, what is there to fight? Who would they attack? They would have to kill everyone in the town to have their revenge, and even though anarchy would be nonviolent in its most idealistic sense, few societies have ever condemned murder in self defense. It would come down to a few individuals vs. an entire town. Of course if someone has to kill the outcasts in defense of the town, that brings up the question of whether or not they themselves would be cast out. I think anarchy would require a more subjective view of morals than the standard "life good, murder bad" idea. Whatever happened, people would have to weigh the actions of the individual against the welfare of the community, which could definately be a slippery slope.

Will-
I believe that morals come from social education way more than formal education; after all, morals we still hold to existed long before government provided education was around. Parents teach kids compassion, respect and integrity, kids teach grandkids and so on. Morals which have been around for ages wouldn't necessarily change just because the government did.

8:31 PM  
Blogger Derick said...

I am a pessimist. Anarchy would never work, because people are lazy >.>

Why grow barley when the person next to you is growing enough to keep you both alive? Also, who even designates who does what job? Who tells one person to research energy saving fuels and another to go farm barley, and how do they choose which person does which task?

9:10 PM  
Blogger marci said...

derick- imagine an ideal world where people aren't lazy.

anarchy would work pretty freakin well, dontcha think?

9:25 PM  
Blogger Hikingout said...

William Hea

I respect your arguments that social education leads to morals, but even this education is mostly government regulated. Most of your social interaction occurs at government school. Everyone is taught similar values by the government and the sociaetal structure around the government enforces these values. Without the government there will be many pockets of different moralities because there will no longer be a single uifying moral factor (as long as we are still going with the atheism is necessary for anarchy argument).

Marci, I think the society you are thinking of is a religious Utopian experiment in the United States, it died.

Derick's argument is the best one I've seen yet.

Using Meyer's somewhat oversimplified analogy, even if everyone on the island has enough resources, there is still the question of distribution, how much is enough for each person, who needs more? Humans tend to draw lines and these divisions kill anarchy. That and people are too lazy to all do the same amount of work for the same benefit, thanks Derick.

9:33 PM  
Blogger Kurt W. said...

It's probably more likely that the outcasts would just form their own community instead of attack their old one But if these outcasts form a new society, they clearly won't like the other society, which will create conflict, and thus the need for government, right?

Of course if someone has to kill the outcasts in defense of the town, that brings up the question of whether or not they themselves would be cast out. I think anarchy would require a more subjective view of morals than the standard "life good, murder bad" idea. Whatever happened, people would have to weigh the actions of the individual against the welfare of the community, which could definately be a slippery slope.

By the community weighing actions of others, aren't they instituting Judiciary actions? Isn't that a form of government?

Good Lord, why am I up? I have a zero hour. Guess this just proves my inner nerd.

9:53 PM  
Blogger marci said...

you're probably right, will.

i really suck at differentiating between anarchy, communism and marxism, republics, and democracies.

i suppose i'm a moron. i'll step out of this specific blog, because i clearly have no clue what i'm talking about.

you all have fun :)

10:15 PM  
Blogger Hikingout said...

Marci,
I did not intend to call you a moron or any ad hominem. I am sorry if I offended you, I just meant to challenge your opinion.

The fact that I disagree with you or argue with you doesn't mean I think you are stupid or that your opinion is stupid.

I was merely trying to point out that no attempted Utopian society has lasted very long. (I could be wrong and there may be some backwoods Utopian society somewhere).

11:00 PM  
Blogger Becca S said...

Ok, I barely even know where to begin because I just have too much to say. So first of all, I'd like to begin this by saying that I do not realistically believe that anarchy could work today, tomorrow, or even in our life times. The world has based all of civilization upon government and control and so if we were to suddenly eradicate government, I agree with everyone in class that the world would face complete and utter chaos.

However, I think anarchy as an ideal and a futuristic hope, is not only logical but absolutely revolutionary --but no, the world is not ready...yet. So now I am going to attempt to describe my position:

First of all, I would like to defend the radical anarchists that have attached such a negative connotation to anarchy. I think that the violent and sometimes obnoxious (poop throwing) ways of anarchists these days is a result of people living in a society that is COMPLETELY polar to anything they believe in. I know from experience (today's class) that a somewhat rational way of talking about anarchy is not about to convince anyone. I don't think poop throwing is any more effective but it is something that undoubtedly will get people's attention --and when you're living in a world that is going against every moral fiber in your body, maybe poop throwing and violence could be considered a first step --an attention grabber to prelude an idea that you truly believe in.

Secondly, I do not think that anyone has an accurate view of human nature. I don't think anyone in the United States could accurately pinpoint what is and what is not human nature. I've heard today that competition, greed, and dominant leadership are human nature but I just don't buy that. In the world we've created for ourselves it would seem overwhelmingly evident that those fallacies are human nature, but I think those awfully pessimistic views of human nature are instilled in us by government and society. Of course a capitalistic society says that competition is human nature --if they told us anything else, why would we mercilessly compete against eachother? If we were taught that we each had the power to overcome our own personal evils, there would be no need for them...so I really am not surprised when an entire class can understand where I'm coming from, but has no hope that it will work --BECAUSE THAT'S WHAT THEY'RE TELLING YOU TO SAY TO ME! Now I know that by getting into my "paranoia" about the governmnet, I am risking the integrity of my argument. I know this because you are not the first group of people I've tried to convince that the government is mindlessly controlling you --and I've come to learn that no matter who I tell, they think I'm crazy. But in the spirit of open-mindedness, just hear me out because by you not listening, you're just convincing me more of how right I am.

So now, to the best of my ability (remember I'm just brainstorming too) I'll try and answer some of the "how would it work questions".
-What to do with the dissenters? Like people have been saying, there are obviously going to be "bad apples" and people with mental disabilities. For these people, I would say the people who are being affected can deal with the problem in any way that goes by the morals of the society. Therefore, murdering them would not be a very probable solution. Banishment seems reasonable. So now to Kurt's question: where would they go? That is a question that has troubled me as well. I've tried to think of some options: an undersea community, a spaceship to the moon, or send them all to someplace none of us like that much, say France? Or on a more reasonable note, we could build a "jail-type establishment" that resembled a rehabilitation center. If someone cannot handle the responsibility of controlling themselves in a society where EVERYONE is expected to have an unbelievable level of self control, they do not deserve to live there --no matter the reason. Instead of having the "rehab center" be government owned and regulated, it would fall to the responsibility of the people --a responsibility that comes with the privelege of living without a government. Before I continue to answer some of the questions, I'm going to expand on this idea of handing the necessary government responsibility to the people. If the people need new roads, hospitals, and schools than it is the people's responsibility to build them. Let's say one person decides that the school their child is attending needs a new gym --because we all know how important new gyms can be to a school's overall funtion (especially when they already have 2...ok sorry). That person can take the initiative to rally support --if they find support amongst the community, they should try and find economic support from a business with economic power. Now, why on earth would a business fund a school gym? It just seems like more time and money than it's worth right? Well what if instead of money guiding the society, a high standard of living guided the society? Or, you know, while I'm on a role here...what if the CEO of the company had a student at the school? What if people could possibly learn to relinquish their ideas of what runs our society (money and power) and realize that we are all humans! Realize that we each are born with a life to live. A life that we should be able to choose any way we want to live it as long as that does not hinder anyone else's choice on how they want to live their life. Now I'm going to rant for a second so skip this if you don't care (but it does support my point): I don't understand the society we're living in --why does this idea of capitalism lock people in offices doing jobs they have NO desire to do? I've been really troubled with this in the last couple months, because I, like the rest of the senior class have to think about where I want to go to college and what I want to do with my life. Throughout high school, I've been the typical honors student --taking honors classes, getting A's, joining clubs, getting a job, being a part of my youth group, dancing my bones to death (don't get me wrong, I love to dance --that's not just for my resume, I also love Amnesty --so that's not for my resume either) but the point is that I've been losing a ridiculous amount of sleep. And why? I don't even know what I want to do yet --I just know that I have been told not only by the government institution of public schools, but also by my family, my friends, and my society that trying my absolute hardest is the only thing that can separate me from the rest of you. And to succeed in this country, I have to stand out. But lately I've been wondering why "succeeding in this country" is the motivation for my staying up until 3 in the morning trying to understand chemistry --a subject which I just will never understand. This is my life and if I'm going to be up until 3 in the freakin' morning, I should be doing something that I want to do --I should be dancing, I should be writing urgent actions to free prisoners of conscience, I should be RANTING my face off on a blog about anarchy (it actually is 1 20 in the morning) --I should not be studying chemistry to try and get an A in an AP class to bring up my GPA from a 4.0 to a 5.0 so that Stanford will accept me and I can become a lawyer and get rich screwing over the rest of you. I don't want to be a lawyer and I don't want to screw over the rest of you.

Ok...back to anarchy!

Sarah's question: "So my REAL question is this: in order to be truly anarchistic, would a society have to be truly Atheistic as well? "
I do not in any way think that anarchy and atheism have to go hand in hand. I know that religious conflict is a very big issue today (another reason why I don't see anarchy taking place any time soon)but according to the accepted societal ideals that will HAVE to proceed this movement, people will know how to tolerate one another. Which religion controls Jerusalem will not be an issue because people will get over the things that have caused wars in the past. And this isn't necessarily a bad thing. I'm not saying that these religions should give up their pride and relinquish their homeland --I'm saying that these people will be able to think for themselves rather than as a member of a religion. Individuals might fight over who gets to live in Israel because that is how devout they are to their religion...but if I was living in the area I would gain support from my fellow people and if those "fighters" in any way harmed anyone else, I would banish them. And if I didn't have support in the community I would move. Maybe Israel can just be its own little deal and people can massacre eachother until all the ppl who feel the need to massacre are massacred and the rest of the world can move on (just one possibility).

Ok, one question that even I still have about the whole anarchy deal is over resources. That is the only thing that I see seriously getting in the way of an anarchical society --we don't have unlimited resources and this is definitely somethign people could fight over even with utmost toleration of one another --when it comes down to physical survival. But I think this too has hope. Like the rest of government functions, the people could create an environmental system of some sort --and people would research alternative resources, and people would preserve their environment, and people would distribute the available resources EQUALLY.

Ok, FINALLY I'm going to wrap this up. I know I've been saying on and on that I agree with all you and it isn't going to happen anytime soon --which it isn't. But I truly believe that some day in the future, it could be a possibility. With every generation we're becoming more tolerant of one another --look at us! It is a new and revolutionary generation of youth that can pick eachother to pieces on a blog about serious moral issues and still greet eachother with a smile in class. Not only are people becoming more tolerant as time goes on, but I also think that people are becoming more pissed at the current situation of the world --I haven't heard one good idea about what to do with Africa --an entire CONTINENT (remember it's 1 out of 7 and another one is cold, so that means we're down to 5 successfully civilized continents) is in tatters. Disease, civil war, oppression, poverty, hunger...the list goes on and on and on. Finally, I think that anarchy has a hope of survival in the distant future because of advanced technology --like Barbara was saying, I don't need the government to tell me what's going down in China...I can look it up faster on Google.

Alright, I think I said everything that I could ever say about this topic.

I take that back. We all know I'm lying.

1:28 AM  
Blogger julie s said...

Becca -

I'm impressed. I didn't have any idea of how in depth your thoughts on anarchy were. Not that I doubted your passion, but I just wasn't sure how much you'd thought about it. I still believe that it wouldn't work any time soon, so I'm in agreement with your first statement, but maybe it might work in the distant future. I particularly liked your thoughts on human nature. I've stuck firmly to my belief that human's are truly evil because I've experienced a large amount of that evil myself. Maybe that bias has kept me from seeing the good. I'm not sure. I'm going to think about this anarchy topic a lot more...

7:51 AM  
Blogger chrisg said...

Hey Mr. Meyer,

I was wondering if there would be any way for people who missed a class, like me with this one, to figure out what is going on, and maybe create a different perspective on it.
Thanks

1:53 PM  
Blogger Sidder said...

Julie,
I really do agree with you when you say that human being are evil in nature, but there is a possibility that people will get along. Anarchy is a great idea, if i works. To many people want power, money, and fame for the principle of anarchy to work. But, if we simplified the government interactions and allowed them "be our mommy" as tyler put it, then i feel more people would benifit from the system and the general mood of the nation could improve. Right now in this day and age anarchy is just not possible, but i hope sometime it can and will build the basis for our nation.

8:13 PM  
Blogger Meghan L said...

I have a hypothetical to add.

Sarah mentioned earlier that just because there were no laws doesn't mean she would go out and kill/rape/steal tomorrow. Well, no, I wouldn't do those things either. But to be completely honest, if there were no law against it, I might feel alot better about say speeding or running a red light. If there were not consequences set in place from a powerful group,yah, I would probably speed alot. haha.
as annoying as speed limits are, they serve a purpose. They force the driver to be paying attention while driving and when the limits are implemented, the driver has much more control over the car. So with no speeding tickets and hikes in insurance payments, what will stop everybody from driving to suit there timeline and engine ability? If a car can go 200 miles an hour down University, why not do it? Who needs stoplights? So then, when a massive car crash happens, what then? No blame can be assigned because there are no natural human laws against speeding and after all it was just an accident. Accountibility is also a government function and unless there are just no cars in anarchy, I don't know how to solve the problem. and no cars would just be too hard.

and please, I don't go 200 mph. Just a hypothetical for smaller laws.

also, I was wondering how bartering would work. who would set what the items were equal for? If one farmer grew wheat, a staple American food, and one person sold, whoops, no gave out concessions at a pool, how would they trade so that the wheat farmers efforts were repaid but also so the poor concessioner could still live just as equally?
and if simple jobs like a concessioner didn't exist, how would workers relate to the unemployed?
There has to be a standard and a way to work equally, but how without government and price values?

9:15 PM  
Blogger barbarab88 said...

i believe man has the innate sense to achieve. to be better, to produce, to be great. look at our government class. we are all ap and honors kids who have been competing since freshman year to be the best, to look the best to colleges. how is that any different than society. becca would say that society caused that competition. however, what caused society to cause the competition? people had to initially compete. if colleges just said we will accept anyone, just not any more than say 100000 people. what if a student really wanted to go to this school, he would try to make himself look better than everyone else even though he doesn't have to. he wants to just so he has a guaranteed spot at that school. man's first concern and thought is not "how is this effecting my neighbor" but "how is this effecting me". a man will always choose his life over the whole because he values his more than the others. its not evil, its instinct. in order to live in a completely anarchial society, the mindset of the man would have to change from "me" to "we".

don't get me wrong. anarchy would be soo much fun. im all for it. however, it would not work.

11:23 PM  
Blogger EmilyR said...

Meghan, about your last comment-- I would probably speed a lot too. At least until something bad happened. With little kids they have a hard time figuring things out by just hearing it. Don't run too fast or you'll fall, don't touch that or you'll get burned... Likewise, with adults, I think that yes we would all be speeding, but then we would get in accidents that, hopefully, aren't too bad and figure that well, if I hadn't been speeding then that wouldn't have happened, so next time, you won't run that light or speed too fast. Or else you would have already learned that lesson and figure that when a someone is telling you to do something or else something bad will happen you should probably do it. And think, I speed too but not like going 90 down county line (Although I do know someone who did). If I don't know the speed limit somewhere, I usually figure aroung 40 or 45 depending on where I am. Given, the only reason I worry about is that I don't want to get pulled over but it's still just kind of instinctive. Likewise, I tend to go slower where I don't know the speed than where I do.
Just a question for anyone and everyone...
If there wasn't a government and anarchy was the norm, where would we get the social projects? Would we be giving our own money to build roads and such. What about all the bureaucracy we were talking about on Fri.? How would we get our mail, or pay our teachers, or build roads?

8:30 PM  
Blogger Sarah A said...

As far as social projects go, I think the general consensus among most anarchists is that citizens would put in their own time to make sure that things get done which need to be done, such as roads, libraries, schools, etc. I think what a lot of people forget is that the government isn't doing anything right now that citizens couldn't do for themselves (though they would like you to think so). A group of cooperating citizens could build roads, stock libraries and educate children without the funds, instruction or hinderence of the government. As far as paying teachers goes, there would be no money, so salary wouldn't be an issue. Teachers would teach out of the love of teaching, people would build roads out of the necessity of having roads built. It would be a volunteer based society. Citizens would take care of each other and their society...and then we'd all hold hands and sing "kum ba ya" and all that other liberal nonsense.

I'm still not saying that I think tomorrow we should stage a "coup" and overthrow "the man", but I think that in the future, as people become more and more fed up with the state of affairs and realize that they are perfectly capable of existing without cops, IRS agents and legislators breathing down their necks, it could happen. Or at least I can have the hope.

12:40 AM  
Blogger Hikingout said...

The government IS doing something now that citizens can't do themselves, the government is forcing citizens to work together. Why should I work harder than someone else if we benefit equally? The government also provides a way to decide where the roads go, where they pass through, who gets what and how much, etc. People cannot solve these things among themselves there has to be a forum to argue these ideas, government. Look at this blog, although many people would call this anarchy we are still being governed by the rules of the school and Meyer, they may not actively participate, but we all know that there will be repercussions if we step out of line. That is why government is necessary there must be a way to facilitate decisions.

12:01 PM  
Blogger Lera Y said...

Becca, I’m just trying to clarify something you said. I don’t know too much about anarchy, but from what I do know, it doesn’t seem it would work, though I do think it is a good idea. Anyway, this is what you said.

Like people have been saying, there are obviously going to be "bad apples" and people with mental disabilities. For these people, I would say the people who are being affected can deal with the problem in any way that goes by the morals of the society. Therefore, murdering them would not be a very probable solution. Banishment seems reasonable. So now to Kurt's question: where would they go? That is a question that has troubled me as well. I've tried to think of some options: an undersea community, a spaceship to the moon, or send them all to someplace none of us like that much, say France? Or on a more reasonable note, we could build a "jail-type establishment" that resembled a rehabilitation center. If someone cannot handle the responsibility of controlling themselves in a society where EVERYONE is expected to have an unbelievable level of self control, they do not deserve to live there --no matter the reason.

Are you telling me that in this anarchist society there would only be the good and perfect people because the “bad” or mentally disabled people would be thrown into a jail or elsewhere? Tell me I misunderstood…

9:20 AM  
Blogger Derick said...

"Or on a more reasonable note, we could build a "jail-type establishment" that resembled a rehabilitation center. If someone cannot handle the responsibility of controlling themselves in a society where EVERYONE is expected to have an unbelievable level of self control, they do not deserve to live there --no matter the reason."

Who puts them there? A council? Votes by the people? If the latter, who initiates the vote, who collects the votes, who counts the votes, etc.?

10:51 AM  
Blogger EmilyR said...

Okay... So this blog kind of died out. I think we all got everything said that we wanted cause A lot of it is just the same stuff-- Anarchy is theoretically a logical idea but there are flaws, like with any government, and there's no chance that it would be successful in our lifetimes.

NEW TOPIC, PLEASE!! We don't want to go back to real life!

So, If anyone is interested, I have a new topic: Power.
I was talking with my dad and he was just stating the hypothetical question "Why do people allow others to have power over them?" With the religious leaders and cult mentality (not that all religions are cults, by any means) But why do people follow so wholeheartedly? What about the slave trade? Why did the Europeans think they had power over the Africans and why did the Africans not do more to rebel? I know that the Aficans didn't have weapons, but there must have been something... Was it only fear?

So, if anyone is still reading this... Any thoughts?

7:40 PM  
Blogger MeganF said...

My ideas of anarchy are extremely limited and I know very little in the subject. Julie- I respect everything you have to say about it and I look up to your knowledge. This whole tangent may be completely unapplicable to the ideas of anarchy and if they are I apoligize. I am just responding to the idea I've been told that in an anarchy everyone is basically equal.

I believe competition leads to advancement. If we took away people's work ethics, accomplishments, and drive, there would be no point in living. I can say I acutally am bias because I am a very competitive person by nature and need to win. Nobody can take that away from me, even if I wanted them to. Look at society's love of sports. Sure, when you are 6 years old it "doesn't matter if you win or loose, it's how you play the game," but professionally and even at the level I play at, it IS about winning. People watch sports not only for the passion of the game but also for the competition. Competition is a wonderful thing that often has a negative connotation. It makes me mad to think that no matter how hard I work and how much I achieve, in an anarchy I will be the same as everyone else. When I feel I am better at something than someone else, I'm not about to settle and let everyone else catch up. I'm not saying I'm an all-around better person, but there are things I'm better at than others and I want to excel in those areas. I know I lack ability in some areas that the rest of you conquer in, and I wouldn't want it to be any other way. I believe everyone has certain gifts and it's because we aren't equal that the world is so interesting. We can not comform to complacency. What you recieve in life should be earned and not given to you so that society is equal. I don't see how an anarchy could work because of people like me. I was born this way and I'm sure I'm not the only one out there. If you don't agree, come to one of the ABK practices, they are a good laugh. I'm not trying to ruin your ideas of anarchy, they are great, but simply impossible because of people like me. Sorry.

If my perception of anarchy is off,as I'm sure it is, please inform me. I'm here more to learn than to argue. That's just that point I have to offer.

7:53 PM  
Blogger MeganF said...

Emily- Sorry, I was in the middle of writing my blog and then yours came up. So I kind of killed your transition. By all means start this new subject of power. I just wanted to say my peace basically because it was the only place in this whole blogging experiance that I felt I could jump in. It's time to freak out about power...

7:56 PM  
Blogger EmilyR said...

That's fine, Megan, I didn't think that there was much more to say, but you make some good points! I was just thinking that Since Meyer hasn't posted any more questions, I might as well post my own :) But if you all don't want to move on yet, that's fine!!

8:12 PM  
Blogger Becca S said...

Lera-
You asked: "Are you telling me that in this anarchist society there would only be the good and perfect people because the “bad” or mentally disabled people would be thrown into a jail or elsewhere? Tell me I misunderstood…"

-I probably used "bad" and "mentally disabled" in too general of a way. I'm just saying that if people commit crimes and become a physical threat to the rest of the society, then yes, the society (to answer Derrick's question) has the leverege to vote the threatening person out of the society. Not all mentally disabled and bad people will be thrown into jail so only the perfect can populate the society --but the people who do (from past actions) pose a threat are allowed to be banished.

Also something I would like to clarify, mostly in response to meghan f.'s response, is that anarchy doesn't necessarily eliminate competition. I don't know exactly how it would work, but I think the only way it can work is if we learn to embrace competition in a non-power-imposing sense. If anarchy were to take hold in America, I'm sure some sort of capitalism would have to exist as well --I don't think that it is feasible to take away people's incentives to better themselves either (example --the failures of communism). It's also not feasible to eliminate the economy. In reality, the economy is supposed to run pretty much separate from the government anyways (laissez faire), so I don't think capitalism and one's drive for economic success and prosperity would have to be eliminated.

9:24 PM  
Blogger Becca S said...

To Emily:
I think it would be sweet to change the subject to power --and at least in my head, it still has a lot to do with anarchy.

Fortunately for everyone I'm just not in the mood to write a 7-page-paper about my opinions on it, though I could. I'll just say that all my 7 pages of opinions on anarchy were founded on my dislike of the abuse of power in history and presently. So, if you didn't read my rant on anarchy, this would simply tell you that I don't like power too much either --I think most humans will use power negatively if given enough --even if only in an effort to hold onto it a little bit longer.


So...if we get rid of the power-hierarchy than maybe one day we can achieve anarchy and everyone can live happily and independently --working to satisfy the life goals that they invented for themselves rather than a societies goals that were molded for them. :) And then we'll sing peace songs and I can grow my beard.

9:36 PM  
Blogger Meghan L said...

One question I have had about power goes along with Mr. Meyer's 4 definitions of power, the A and B people.
So A gets B to do these things, gradually growing a stronger hold over B, but HOW does A get B to do these things? HOW does A rise over B in the first place?
I'm not so sure that power is what A does, but how. If we can answer the how, that is where we will find the method in power, where it begins and how it grows in the four steps.

10:38 PM  
Blogger Derick said...

blackmail and/or bribery =D

10:47 PM  
Blogger EmilyR said...

I agree, Meghan. I don't understand how. It can't all be fear. or blackmail. That's what a dictator does. But like Mr. Meyer was saying, He doesn't actually make others believe his preferences. That's more of a cult mentality and that would be so scary if a government did indeed have that much power. It seems like that definition of power involves more brainwashing than anything and how would one accomplish brainwashing.
Okay, I know I'm a AP Kid, But it's like zoolander. Taking that movie for some shred of reality, Why doesn't Derek realize that it is just a silly video. I guess he does at one point, but he gets shocked. But seriously, even though he's stupid, He has to have some kind of inkling that it's not right. And Even though it is just a completely outrageous movie, which I never thought I would be blogging about on an AP blog, Why does it work (forgetting the fact that it's a ben Stiller/Owen Wilson/Will Ferrill Movie.

7:28 AM  
Blogger Rebecca S said...

In terms of Meghan's question, I'd have to say that it really depends on who A is. In class we discussed the different people who have power, representing A. Some of the answers that came up were parents or religious leaders. These people gain their power by having kids or going through the training and earning the job. And who A is also helps put in perspective who B is. For example, my parents may have some form of power, but it doesn’t extend far because the only B’s they have are me and my siblings. And A still needs to embody some of the definitions we discussed in class such as leadership skills and the right personality.

8:55 AM  
Blogger Garrison said...

I think anarchy is possible, it simply gives poeple absolut choice. It's not safe and it will result in disaster, but that is anarchy. This no source of govenment, is not intended for peace. The idea is for a complete realm of choice. Natural sin doesn't determine the path of all people only those who chose to abide by it. There is no stability or saftey. I think anarchy is possible if poeple except a common fate; we are at the mercy of those who chose to abide by natural sin.

9:49 PM  
Blogger Robyn Louis said...

Wow, I can't believe I'm only joining the blog now!
Anarchy would never work!
Garrison said it is possible if we all accept a common fate. I don't want to accept the common fate of disaster! People would decide to fight back against the disaster and chaos; they would then form some sort of organization for protection and order. They would then be creating a society with a governing body. We would revert back to a tribal state and then repeat the last thousand years.
There are way too many IFs for an anarchy to work. If you were the only one on an island.If there were enough resources for everybody. If everybody was good and not evil. If we all survived.
There will never be enough resources for everybody. Even if there were, people would want more or they would want their neighbors. People are never content with what they have. Second, even if everybody was good, everybody has different ideas of what is good and what is not. There would be wars over the concept of what is good and right. Everybody's morals are different so no society could ever get along perfectly.
For those of you who think anarchy could work, what type of conditions and what would the criteria be for it to work?

10:33 AM  
Blogger T said...

Very interesting discussion on anarchy. I am not a student in this class, in fact I do not attend Arapahoe high school, but I consider Meyer to be a good friend of mine and am good friends with several people in the class, so I hope you don’t mind me taking the liberty of posting my own idea upon your board…

In all of your discussion you have spoken of anarchy as a hypothetical, an idealists dream with little or no practical examples to view. In fact we all live in anarchy right now. No, I am not delusional, I understand that the United States has a government and is not anarchy. There is no international body governing the world, and therefore at the international level anarchy rules. While the UN has some sway over international politics, there is little real power governing the nations of the world. Countries are free to act in whatever way they wish. You may argue that international law requires nations to uphold certain conduct and that disobeying these laws has ramifications, but if you are fortunate enough to be a country who yields significant power (for example if you are the sole superpower in the world) you can decide not to agree to environmental treaties, nuclear proliferation deals, and you can illegally detain persons in prisons around without administering them the rights of a prisoner. I digress. My point is, existing in this state of anarchy, what keeps a nation from doing whatever it pleases? As the world becomes more global and the global economy booms, interdependence upon trade with other nations prevents countries from performing irrational acts…and the threat of nuclear holocaust is a good deterrent. Anyway, I just wanted to see if anyone had any thoughts on this international anarchy.

Thanks for listening to the ramblings of a non-class member and Sidder, keep up the good work between the sticks.

12:36 AM  
Blogger Derick said...

If this was an attempt to justify the anarchy discussed previously using today's government as an example, I'd have to disagree with you. Individual countries can't be viewed as entities the same way one person can. If applied to the type of anarchy described here with absolutely no governing system at all, you make the assumption that no one would harm others because they would fear the punishment to themselves (such as the trade they need). But some people are just mentally unstable. One country, being composed of millions of people, would be much more stable/rational in decision making than just one person.

But, if this was just asking for thoughts on this type of anarchy, then I have nothing much to say and you can ignore this post >.>

10:13 PM  
Blogger EmilyR said...

First, I am not exactly sure how you are talking about anarchy. If it is merely the lack of an official governing body, then yes, our world is one of anarchy. However, Anarchy can also be considered a lack of any established ethical code in which case, our world is not one of anarchy. Consider the US (the sole super power I assume you are talking about). In the case of Iraq, Bush was indeed able to enter Iraq despite the UN not wanting him to. He entered anyhow because of our position. However, Now that he has entered and begun to spread democracy, Bush would be condemned if he chose to left. Also, He is taking a lot of criticism for not stopping poverty and AIDS in Africa. I think he should be doing more as well. The rest of the world expects him and his administration to solve the world's problems because he governs the superpower. I don't know if this makes a whole lot of sense. But by being a super power, The US is being held responsible for things it would not necessarily bother with. Although there is no established government for the government, there are still values the US is expected to uphold which defines much of its policy.

9:32 AM  
Blogger Rebecca S said...

Emily, I'd have to disagree with your statement that “anarchy can also be considered a lack of any established ethical code, in which case our world is not one of anarchy." I have never seen any evidence of an "established ethical code" for the global community. Different religions and different cultures often have very different ideas pertaining to how people should behave properly in their given society, thus creating different ethics for each community. In the KKK, for example, using different types of intimidation and harassment is perfectly acceptable, whereas else where many of their actions might be frowned upon. Or in India, there still a group of people so grotesque to their community that they have been deemed "untouchable" and are completely ostracized. So no, in this, I'd have to agree more with Mr. T on this one that the world we live in is anarchical even by your definition using an established ethical code.

9:48 PM  
Blogger EmilyR said...

I understand that much of what occurs in our world is completely unethical. The point I was trying to make is that when it comes to nations being in a state of anarchy, there is still a system of checks and balances where other nations will hold each other responsible for their actions whether the intial actions were moral or immoral.

9:25 AM  
Blogger Arielle said...

Wow. These comments took quite a while to read. (Thanks to becca for the short novel...)

As Sarah and Becca have outlined several instances and their dealing within our hypothetical anarchical society, I'd just like to provide some support that lies within historical trends. As I'm sure you would agree, our Consitution is, so far, the most liberating outline of government. As such, we can conclude that America follows a liberal tradition of government (liberal as defined by the political spectrum of the French Revolution, ie: changing from the past, away from monarchy and reactionism.) Thus, since the abandonment of Feudalism, the evolution of government has been a search for freedom and swings further and further left with sporadic opposition (fascism, Soviet communism, etc.) Therefore, if the evolution of government continues with its historical trend, it will eventually reach a point of ultimate freedom, individual and societal. So we must ask, will humanity continue to push its governmental horizons or will we all kill each other first?

8:08 AM  

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