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Again, you're talking about capitalism as it has traditionally existed, not as it would exist in a stateless society. Big business is unsustainable without the state (even many socialists will say as much).
First, that is simply ridiculous. Many of these businesses already own armies and guns. If the state suddenly disappears, without being held high by workers syndicates and a strong workers union with the intent of directly overthrowing these businesses and abolishing capitalism, they would quickly become the state.
When the government weakened in Columbia, those living there weren't met with equality, quite the opposite. Capitalist thugs: drug traders, Coke-a-Cola, etc... quickly formed armies and became the state, kidnapping, murdering, and torturing countless innocents in order to further their own goals as organizations.
Secondly, that wouldn't be a good thing. Many of the modern utilities that we take for granted, such as computers, the Internet, highway systems, etc... require massive organizations to produce and maintain. Small, localized authorities would simply fail to provide the technologies that we've come to enjoy.
And what about all the small business owners who worked their asses off the start a restaurant, plumbing company, or mechanic shop?
But the state built this infrastructure from stolen funds to begin with.
it's the capitalist who provided the capital in the first place
Further, the same argument can be used to defend the existence of the state and the taxation of its citizens: Where would we be today if the state hadn't claimed and protected the land and built the infrastructure that we depend on?
Both conclusions take the same faulty axiom: That authoritarianism is necessarily constructive, and that production can only occur where said production is centrally planned, either by capitalists or bureaucrats.
In reality, it is the workers who do the work. The workers, all of them collectively, power production, and the workers, again, collectively, built the means of production. The capitalist isn't a bricklayer, or an engineer, or a mechanic, the capitalist uses her wealth to exploit those workers into building the means of production for her.
You make it sound as if the industrial revolution sprung forth from a completely egalitarian society, where mutualism was the law of the land. This is simply not true- just years before organized industry we had revolts, from the, then middle class, bourgeoisie, against the global aristocracies; and below them both, the soon to become proletariat, peasantry. The capitalists were never existing within an equal space with the workers, before the revolts, they were between the peasantry and the aristocracy, and afterwards they were kept high above the proletariat as much of the wealth that they took back from the aristocrats belonged to the proles.
Very occasionally a new capitalist will rise up, but just the fact that this occurs does not conflict with the above paragraph. The question of where this capitalist's wealth comes from is still a very pertinent question. What possible contribution can one person make that would cause them to be worth hundreds, thousands, even millions more than another individual? Do you know anyone with the strength of a million average men? The intelligence? If capitalists were truly legitimate, we would be talking about a world of super-heroes, not one of real people. And what of the people who contribute the same amount, but fail, for arbitrary reasons? What could be called the first actual computers were invented, independently by three different people at relatively similar times. Despite contributing what was more or less the largest technological wonder created by an individual in human history, all of them were shafted, left relatively poor, and didn't achieve fame, even within their field, until after their death, if they achieved fame at all.
Were they not worth as much as man number 1213454 to apply derivation to blind investments, and make out well?
As I've said, government-imposed barriers to entry make it a lot harder for the little guy to start up his own business.
- Capitalism is a system of private ownership of the means of production. Socialism is collective ownership of the means of production. The two terms are antonyms.
And I don't see how contracting is illegitimate.
People could save up and invest in their own business, or pool resources and start a co-op.
In a free market, the barriers to entry would be minimal, and without barriers to entry, people would have more freedom and independence, and it would be easier for worker co-ops to start up; in other words, anybody with a penchant for cooking could turn their home into a restaurant, anybody who's skilled in auto-repair could turn their garage into a mechanic shop, anybody with a car and a cell phone could be a taxi driver, nurses could provide basic medical services, technicians could design basic structures, paralegals could provide basic legal services, etc, etc, etc.
The anarcho-capitalist argument is that in a free market
exploitation would no longer be a problem, as people would no longer be working for capitalists under conditions of duress. Some people might prefer to work for a capitalist though.
Regardless, I was responding to a philosophical question regarding legitimacy, not the question of feasibility.
- No matter how you try to spin it, private ownership of the means of production is a process wherein a person is forced to hand over the product of their labor against their will to an institution that they never chose to have a relationship with.
Some will argue that you agree to surrender your labor value (and engage in a relationship with the owner) by choosing to use the means of production that the capitalist has claimed, but that begs the question - what gives the capitalist the right to preside over its claimed means of production? Despite centuries of mental masturbation, philosophers have not been able to provide a conclusive answer, and anarchism is the default position.
- About Joey Hume
- Favourite Zelda Game
- Wind Waker
- Favourite Zelda Character
- I'm a laid back, live-&-let-live type; probably why I'm a libertarian; I'm a big clown; and I love animals and the outdoors.
- Hanging out, movies, gaming, ethics, philosophy of science, economics, technological theory, evolutionary biology, evolutionary psychology.
- I'm majoring in economics and psychology.
- United States
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