Saturday, August 23, 2014

Proxy Violence: On Killing with "Clean" Hands

 From our Inception, We Have Been a Species at War.  I strongly feel that the anarchist/ libertarian non-aggression principle to be rooted in utopian fantasy and to operate as an ideal, rather than a historical reality.  (I fully expect written refutations to this in my mailbox.)  It is not non-aggression that has fuelled most technological nor moral/ philosophical advancements that culminated in this “modern” age, but I'll save more in depth discussion of this for another day.   

On many levels, there has been a centuries-long, collective drive - by academics, philosophers, and just ordinary men and women, to move away from this incessant infighting and toward a more Star Trek-style utopia – ultimately devoid of war and sickness – where humanity can work together to improve its existence on this blue-green marble we call Earth.  The way Western Civilization has flourished, it has made perfect sense that many of the old ways would be left behind.  Much of the world we see today barely resembles the more organically-tribalistic patchwork of nation-states that ruled and defined our ancestors for most of human evolution. 

But violence has always been a necessary part of this succession.  It is the constant and implicit structure which has guarded the perimeter, and watched over the darkest nights so that artists can draw, singers can sing, and workers can work without worrying about a face-painted savage (and I mean “savage” in the most complimentary and empowering way – savagery becomes a virtue when negotiations have failed and violence is the only option which remains,)  driving a spear through their cervical spine or a hail of bullets through their thoracic cavity.

Today’s political landscape sees many minority groups petitioning for, and in many cases rightfully obtaining their rights under the law.  Indeed, the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution promises Equal Protection under the laws for all citizens.  This is necessary for the supreme law of the land to maintain its legitimacy.

Organic Tribalism: However, there are great divisions in our country – fractures along ideological and geographic lines.  This only makes sense when you consider that for most of our species’ existence, we were organized in tribes, and drew strength, comfort, safety, and even our very identities from our fellow tribesmen.  Because of limited technology, and because of simple organic tribalism: that tendency of homo sapiens to group together for survival and assume identities therefrom, that this flourished.  I largely see such differences and many political movements through a tribal lens - political movements adopt similar slogans, speech patterns, logos and insignias, assume a common identity and their own value sets.

All the GPS, live podcasts, and HDTVs haven’t really changed that.  Organic tribalism resonates in many familiar areas of life today – police departments encourage tribalism by donning uniforms.  So do sports teams.  Even when part of a larger organism, such as a branch of the military, smaller units nonetheless display tribal behavior by donning particular insignia, and taking great pride and sometimes even great risk to bring honor to their unit above and beyond the military branch as a whole.

Vicarious wrath and Proxy Violence:  Jack Donovan rightly points out (I’m paraphrasing here, but the essence is the same;)  that an overweight “tough on crime” conservative raising his fist as his TV screen and “feeling tough” about his hard stance against crime is really a sad joke.  In reality, he isn’t standing against crime at all.  He is merely railing in favor of a “low level government employee” pulling a trigger or a switch, or pushing a button.  (If you dig this, you should really follow that link - Donovan is much more articulate than I.) When the switch is pulled, sending electricity pouring into a doomed criminal’s nervous system, that conservative may very well be face deep in a Philly cheese steak, happy about the taking of a life he had little to no part in taking.  This person doesn’t combat the crime himself.  He is content to allow others to do the dirty work so that he can prostrate himself before his God with clean hands.    

The same can be said of certain liberals who cry incessantly for strict gun control.  Make no mistake,  these people are NOT against guns.  The disarmament agenda they vocally and with vitriol espouse cannot operate without the aid of guns.  These talking heads are merely advocating for certain people (who naturally have guns) to barge into the homes of other people and disarm them on threat of death and imprisonment.  

When I have asked many of them if they themselves would be willing to kick down the doors of their fellow gun owning citizens, I generally received some copout about how “they pay taxes” so, naturally, they are entitled to having other people do it for them (as if any amount of tax money is worth a human life,) or occasionally, A poorly thought out script about being pacifistic and against violence in general.

Newsflash: it is very easy to be a pacifist when others stand ready to do violence on your behalf. 

"We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm."

- George Orwell

This idea of keeping one’s hands clean, while relying on others to do violence on their behalf is proxy violence.  To some degree, I acknowledge that it is a necessary evil.  There is certainty and predictability in a civilization where vendettas are the exception and not the rule, and where a law enforcement system can track notorious criminals such as serial killers and child rapists in distant states, far from where a husband or father’s retribution could ever reach them.   

The Proliferation of Proxy Violence in the “Modern” Age: However, there is something equally disturbing about the increase in proxy violence in our society, and more disturbing: the comfort at which many of our civilians espouse.  (I adore Heinlein’s model of civic virtue, and appreciate his contrast between a citizen and a civilian.  also acknowledge that this may be an easy philosophy for me to don given my background.)

Warrior-types – whether military or law enforcement instinctively prefer their generals to lead from the front.  Street police are much more comfortable with a road boss who had extensive experience on patrol and/ or time on a tactical team than they would be with a more "bookish" supervisor.  I definitely did.  There was a time when this was the norm – that any leader worth his mettle could only lead his men from the front.  Today, this sort of valor is predictably frowned upon, as the gears of war and order-maintenance become more technical, requiring perhaps less "balls" and more "brains."  But make no mistake – the spirits of men have not changed as fast as our technology, and are yet still compelled to follow courageous leadership.

This movement toward proxy violence manifests in some ways which I consider to be quite ugly – one is the so-called drug war.  There are too many people in this country who are fine with armed and armored SWAT teams throwing grenades into homes of people suspected of smoking marijuana or hiding cocaine.  I try to live a healthy lifestyle, but if someone else wants to do drugs and aren't hurting, abusing, or neglecting another as a result of their addiction, leave them be. 

While I am a proponent of police militarization, I am only such if (1) tactical teams are used as a last resort, (2) tactical teams are used extremely sparingly – such as in response to the events at Columbine, or the North Hollywood shootout, and (3) they are balanced by a citizenry of free men who also retain the right and the ability to militarize should they need to overthrow a future despotic or rogue government, as was (what I firmly believe to be) the true spirit and purpose of the Second Amendment to the US Constitution. 

(For non-American readers, I make many references to American governance because that is where I reside – if you have any equally compelling doctrines in your nations, feel free to message them to me – I am always appreciative of different ideas regarding this subject matter.)

One of the worst effects of proxy violence is the rise of the defenseless ostrich-men – who have grown with no “street sense,” no ability to defend themselves or others, and who rely solely on the (hopeful) presence of better men than themselves to swoop in and rescue them should violence ever threaten them. 

Rape whistles.  Cell phones.  These are the tools of the unprepared.  Small knife (make sure it's legal,) concealed firearm (make doubly sure it's legal,) now we're talking.  I hope they step it up, because  there are bad and very real people out there who would try to harm them should their paths cross.

I worked in law enforcement for eight years before I was injured in that car wreck, and I can tell you from personal experience that police more often than not arrive to photograph blood spatter and stab wounds, and to load victims into ambulances.  It is less often that we are actually around to intercede in the few seconds that elapse during an assault.

Never have I hoped that an ostrich would back me up when I was fighting a suspect high on PCP.

Implied Violence in the Rule of Law: Law by its very nature cannot rule without the threat/ implication of deadly force for those who resist.  Otherwise, it’s not law at all...merely a suggested behavior protocol.  There exists a commonly reviled but equally necessary political and legislative process by which to amend it, but it often seems clumsy and slow.These are some of the factors that have driven me toward social libertarianism – that fewer laws regulating victimless human behavior are preferable to more laws; that groups of people can assemble peacefully and be at peace in forming their own organic tribal identities.  If one tribe decides that it wants to smoke hashish after work, they shouldn’t fear boots and bullets if they do so.  If another decides that children should be taught to hunt or fight at a young age, that they have the liberty to do so as well, so long as they do not hurt others with such skill sets.

I am of the strong feeling that if you are not willing to swing the axe or pull the trigger yourself, you are living in a fantasy world, and aren’t actually “anti gun,” or “tough on crime.”

It is also very easy to say “well, I would pull the trigger if I had the chance.”

 Let me tell you, I have been in situations where I would have been legally, and perhaps more importantly, morally - under my personal code,  justified in pulling a trigger, and I didn’t.  It isn’t that easy, and I probably sleep better at night because of that choice.   

After having myself, committed proxy violence on behalf of many, many people who I will never meet, I can tell you, it changes the way I look at people.  I was their sin-eater – they got to traipse along knowing that if the going get tough, that I would be the one to see the tough get going.  Don't misunderstand - I accepted that position willingly (quite happily, actually,) and don't regret it at all, it just widened my perception.

Next time you start raving: “kill all those Arabs/Jews/Atheists/blacks/whites/gays/whoever,” think long and hard on whether you would really be willing to commit that violence yourself, or if you are just being a loudmouth and expecting others to do it.  Chances are, you're just being a loudmouth and should knock it off.

Boundaries not Borders

By Pasquale Zoro Pulella

The point of this article is not to propose a belief of any kind on whether or not to have an open border, my idea is to transcend beyond that paradigm. I am not for or against open borders policy I simply propose an alternative to both. If you regard my article as “racist” you haven’t understood it, in which case I would hope that you would read it a second time and try to pretend you are a Martian examining the human race form a scientific point of view.

An anarchist is someone who believes that any form of hierarchical violent authority is immoral, illegitimate, and must be removed. As an Anarchist one would naturally believe that certain unnatural systems that depend on an organized system of hierarchical violence are also immoral regardless of its purpose. As an anarchist one would naturally believe that the borders imposed by government are also themselves an immoral act, and an unnatural human conception. In a nation state one would travel to close proximity to a border from a main road only to find violent agents of the state regulating, tracking, fining, or restricting your right to travel. However the purpose for borders is dualistic in nature. The Nation-State border is used to restrict travel but also to preserve culture. An example of what happens when borders are not enforced can be seen in the southern area of the United States. For better or for worse people from south of the border have been moving across the border; Mexicans, Cubans, Haitians, etc. This is not necessarily a bad thing nor is it necessarily a good thing however some people may have their opinions on this fact either way. For those who propose an open border policy or for anarchists who oppose borders entirely (such is the case for me) one might say that an enforced border would restrict someone’s right to travel and find greener pastures, also they might say that the people who oppose the open border policy are “racist” regardless of whether or not it is true. One who advocates for an enforced border proposes either that the aforementioned “illegal” immigrants are coming to take the peoples jobs OR they would say that they are coming and transfusing their culture into that of the so called “natives”.

The question for an anarchist is therefore what would be the case in a free society? If both Mexico and the US ceased being Nation-States and began being Stateless-Nations then the reason for immigration becomes lost because the uneven distribution of wealth and employment created by global state-capitalism disappears. However say for example the US became a stateless society and Mexico continued being a Nation-State wouldn’t the immigrants continue to enter into the territory once called the USA? Yes they probably would because there is no border and no State to enforce one if there were one. However the “taking of jobs” would no longer be an issue because the lack of taxation would mean that the cost of living would be drastically reduced therefore the higher paying jobs would not be as necessary. But the second (Legitimate) reason for the border still remains, the preservation of culture. If one was a Nationalist American who loves apple pie, Johnny Appleseed, and George Washington and does not want the influence of outsiders in their culture. These people do not need a government to preserve their culture, they can simply set up an enclave where they have the intention of preserving their culture, this idea is not a Border it is a Boundary. The difference between a border and a boundary is simply a tribal issue and it is not unnatural at all, it is simply the way of nature. The main difference is that a Border is enforced while the Boundary is not enforced also that borderlines are considered property of a nation state.
Border: a line separating two political or geographical areas, especially countries.
Boundaries: a line that marks the limits of an area; a dividing line
(Dividing line between groups of people) 

Different packs of animals in the wild tend to live with their own, weather that means traveling together in packs, or living in a certain territory. Hippopotamuses are very territorial, Chimpanzees, and gorillas as well. As for migrating species that travel in groups there are Buffalo, sheep, and geese. Even certain groups of fish tend to travel in their groups. Different herds of Humans tend to do the same; gangs have their territories and even mark their territory with graffiti. Whether or not we should have boundaries is of no consequence, the fact is that people have a natural tendency to trust their tribes and be weary of outside tribes, therefore boundaries will exist. And groups of humans will always be in conflict.

 An example of a boundary would be in Native American culture where they had “territory’s” in these territory’s the natives had no state to force people to stay away from them but rather to make known that they were in the land of a certain tribe. If for example one was to walk in an enemy tribes territory they would not be confronted by tribal border police but rater they would be entering land where he knows that he is not welcome and he is running the risk of  being attacked.  However say for example you were in an allied or neutral tribe’s territory what would happen is you would be left alone or at most questioned in a friendly manner by the home tribe. They would ask if you wanted to trade, share stories, smoke, engage in rituals, etc. The idea of a boundary does leave room for bigotry and hatred to continue however it would only happen if such hatred already existed and by enforcing borders and “togetherness” bigotry will only worsen. My question for anyone who refutes the idea of boundaries for example would be, if you have two groups of people who hate each other would you have them live near each other? Like gangs of today? Or would it be better if they lived apart; they don’t have to like each other, just leave each other alone.

Africa is a perfect example of why Borders are bad and boundaries can be good. The problems in Africa today arise from tribal conflicts. Tribal conflicts had always existed in Africa; take the expansion of the Zulu tribe as an example. The Zulu tribe had conquered many other tribes and has become the biggest tribe in South Africa, due to its aggression against its neighboring tribes. However when the European empires had begun to expand into Africa they made the problems worse. The Europeans had formed borders around the African people regardless of ethnic boundaries and forced people of opposing tribes to live under the same government and many times as neighbors. The African conflicts today are so much more devastating and destructive now that they are forced to live together. The people of Africa had lived in a much more balanced lifestyle before the Europeans had conquered.

Not all boundaries have to be ethnic in origin. Some boundaries can be places to protect the environment for example. In some areas people can shun the activity of fracking so they can do their part in protecting the earth’s crust from man-made destruction. Other places can be a safe haven for nudists (people who don’t want to wear cloths). Still other places can be places where they shun the use of electricity (such as Amish communities). If someone does not want to partake in the idea that the community is promoting such as nudism or Amish lifestyle, they can communicate their concerns with the community and they can work something out. If the individual and the community do not strike and agreement, they can choose to dedicate a land as outside the boundary or leave the area completely. A community based on a religion or ideology can be formed, if there is someone who is anti said religion or ideology they know that that is a zone of conflict for them. There is no limit to the kind of living spaces people can create if we just eliminate the enforcement mechanism of state borders.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

A Libertarian View of Nationalism, Secession, and Ethnic Enclaves

Situación_etnolinguística_de_UcraniaBy Murray Rothbard

[Editor’s Note: This is a Selection from “Nations by Consent:Decomposing the Nation-State”]
The “nation,” of course, is not the same thing as the state, a difference that earlier libertarians and classical liberals such as Ludwig von Mises and Albert Jay Nock understood full well. Contemporary libertarians often assume, mistakenly, that individuals are bound to each other only by the nexus of market exchange. They forget that everyone is necessarily born into a family, a language, and a culture. Every person is born into one or several overlapping communities, usually including an ethnic  group, with specific values, cultures, religious beliefs, and traditions. He is generally born into a “country.” He is always born into a specific historical context of time and place, meaning neighborhood and land area.

The modern European nation-state, the typical “major power,” began  not as a nation at all, but as an “imperial” conquest of one nationality-  usually at the “center” of the resulting country, and based in the capital  city-over other nationalities at the periphery. Since a “nation” is a complex of subjective feelings of nationality based on objective realities, the  imperial central states have had varying degrees of success in forging among  their subject nationalities at the periphery a sense of national unity incorporating submission to the imperial center. In Great Britain, the English  have never truly eradicated national aspirations among the submerged  Celtic nationalities, the Scots and the Welsh, although Cornish nationalism seems to have been mostly stamped out. In Spain, the conquering  Castilians, based in Madrid, have never managed-as the world saw at  the Barcelona Olympics-to erase nationalism among the Catalans, the  Basques, or even the Galicians or Andalusians. The French, moving out from their base in Paris, have never totally tamed the Bretons, the Basques, or the people of the Languedoc.

It is now well known that the collapse of the centralizing and imperial Russian Soviet Union has lifted the lid on the dozens of previously suppressed nationalisms within the former U.S.S.R., and it is now becoming clear that Russia itself, or rather “the Russian Federated Republic,” is simply a slightly older imperial formation in which the Russians, moving out from their Moscow center, forcibly incorporated many nationalities including the Tartars, the Yakuts, the Chechens, and many others. Much of the U.S.S.R. stemmed from imperial Russian conquest in the nineteenth century, during which the clashing Russians and British managed to carve up much of central Asia.

The “nation” cannot be precisely defined; it is a complex and varying constellation of different forms of communities, languages, ethnic groups, or religions. Some nations or nationalities, such as the Slovenes, are both a separate ethnic group and a language; others, such as the warring groups in Bosnia, are the same ethnic group whose language is the same but who differ in the form of alphabet, and who clash fiercely on religion  (the Eastern Orthodox Serbs, the Catholic Croats, and the Bosnian Muslims, who, to make matters more complicated, were originally champions of the Manichaean Bogomil heresy). The question of nationality is made more complex by the interplay of objectively existing reality and subjective perceptions. In some cases, such as Eastern European nationalities under the Habsburgs or the Irish under the British, nationalisms, including submerged and sometimes dying languages, had to be consciously preserved, generated, and expanded. In the nineteenth century this was done by a determined intellectual elite, struggling to revive peripheries living under, and partially absorbed by, the imperial center.

First, we can conclude that nor all state boundaries are just. One goal for libertarians should be to transform existing nation-states into national entities whose boundaries could be called just, in the same sense that private property boundaries are just; that is, to decompose existing coercive nation- states into genuine nations, or nations by consent.

In the case, for example, of the eastern Fredonians, the inhabitants should be able to secede voluntarily from Fredonia and join their comrades in Ruritania. Again, classical liberals should resist the impulse to say that national boundaries “don’t make any difference.” It’s true, of course, as classical liberals have long proclaimed, that the less the degree of government intervention in either Fredonia or Ruritania, the less difference such a boundary will make. But even under a minimal state, national boundaries would still make a difference, often a big one to the inhabitants of the area. For in what language-Ruritanian or Fredonian or both?-will be the street signs, telephone books, court proceedings, or school classes of the area?

In short, every group, every nationality, should be allowed to secede from any nation-state and to join any other nation-state that agrees to have it. That simple reform would go a long way toward establishing nations by consent. The Scots, if they want to, should be allowed by the English to leave the United Kingdom, and to become independent, and even to join a Gaelic Confederation, if the constituents so desire.

A common response to a world of proliferating nations is to worry about the multitude of trade barriers that might be erected. But, other things being equal, the greater the number of new nations, and the smaller the size of each, the better. For it would be far more difficult to sow the illusion of self-sufficiency if the slogan were “Buy North Dakotan” or even “Buy 56th Street” than it now is to convince the public to “Buy American.” Similarly, “Down with South Dakota,” or a fortiori, “Down with 55th Street,” would be a more difficult sell than spreading fear or hatred of the Japanese. Similarly, the absurdities and the unfortunate consequences of fiat paper money would be far more evident if each province or each neighborhood or street block were to print its own currency. A more decentralized world would be far more likely to turn to sound market commodities, such as gold or silver, for its money.

One obvious problem with the secession of nationalities from centralized states concerns mixed areas, or enclaves and exclaves. Decomposing the swollen central nation-state of Yugoslavia into constituent parts has solved many conflicts by providing independent nationhood for Slovenes, Serbs, and Croats, but what about Bosnia, where many towns and villages are mixed? One solution is to encourage more of the same, through still more decentralization. If, for example, eastern Sarajevo is Serb and western Sarajevo is Muslim, then they become parts of their respective separate nations. But this of course will result in a large number of enclaves, parts of nations surrounded by other nations. How can this be solved? In the first place, the enclave/exclave problem exists right now. One of the most vicious existing conflicts, in which the US has not yet meddled because
it has not yet been shown on CNN, is the problem of Nagorno-Karabakh, an Armenian exclave totally surrounded by, and therefore formally within, Azerbaijan. Nagorno-Karabakh should clearly be part of Armenia. But, how then, will Armenians of Karabakh avoid their present fate of blockade by Azeris, and how will they avoid military battles in trying to keep open a land corridor to Armenia?
Under total privatization, of course, these problems would disappear. Nowadays, no one in the U.S. buys land without making sure that his title to the land is clear; in the same way, in a fully privatized world, access rights would obviously be a crucial part of land ownership. In such a world, then, Karabakh property owners would make sure that they had purchased access rights through an Azeri land corridor.

Decentralization also provides a workable solution for the seemingly insoluble permanent conflict in Northern Ireland. When the British partitioned Ireland in the early 1920s, they agreed to perform a second, a more micro-managed, partition. They never carried through on this promise. If the British would permit a detailed, parish by parish, partition vote in Northern Ireland, however, most of the land area, which is majority Catholic, would probably hive off and join the Republic: such counties as Tyrone and Fermanagh, southern Down, and southern Armagh, for example. The Protestants would probably be left with Belfast, county Antrim, and other areas north of Belfast. The major remaining problem would be the Catholic enclave within the city of Belfast, but again, an approach to the anarcho-capitalist model could be attained by permitting the purchase of access rights to the enclave.

Pending total privatization, it is clear that our model could be approached, and conflicts minimized, by permitting secessions and local control, down to the micro-neighborhood level, and by developing contractual access rights for enclaves and exclaves. In the U.S., it becomes important, in moving toward such radical decentralization, for libertarians
and classical liberals-indeed, for many other minority or dissident groups-to begin to lay the greatest stress on the forgotten Tenth Amend- ment and to try to decompose the role and power of the centralizing Supreme Court. Rather than trying to get people of one’s own ideological persuasion on the Supreme Court, its power should be rolled back and minimized as far as possible, and its power decomposed into state, or even local, judicial bodies.
[Image credit.]

Friday, August 1, 2014

Most “Pacifists” are Really Just Afraid of Violence

 VIA: The Enigma of Steel

  I notice that a lot of people like to refer to themselves as “pacifists.”  If I were a betting man, I‘d say that about 10% of them are what they claim to be, and 90% are full of shit. 

First off, pacifism as a belief system, of going forth and doing no harm, is a good thing when chosen freely and voluntarily.  I would like to think that we, as a society, would want to encourage people to ‘go forth and do no harm.’  I am not an anti-pacifist, or a warmonger.  I am generally skeptical when the political and social war drums start beating, but I understand that there is a time and a place...and a very important set of protocols to be mastered when violence becomes an option.

There is a (I’m sad to say) large population of self-described “pacifists” who are simply afraid of and unskilled in the use of violence: a population who hides behind the title as if it were some sort of moral armor. 

I prefer a different term for these people: victims in waiting.  I have more bad news: such victimhood never makes for good armor when armor is most needed. 

You see, there is a stark difference between being a pacifist and simply being someone who is afraid of violence.  If you are on social media, or even hanging out with friends (I like to think that some people still hang out with their friends in real life, and don’t just sit behind keyboards,) and are attacking other peoples’ belief systems, their way of life, their ideas, or their identities; if you like acting superior and being snarky, I have news for you: you probably aren’t a real pacifist.  If you find yourself referring to others as “libtards,” “rednecks” or whatever the vitriolic political insult of the day are basically exercising what is the opposite of pacifism, and are simply choosing to perform these exercises from a physically safe vantage point.   Reducing your ideological adversaries to monosyllabic sound bytes is not a trait of a real pacifist.  This is simply being aggressive in an artificial environment where there is no fear of physical harm.

This is what a real pacifist looks like:
I have a buddy who served on a SWAT team for years, where he was involved in many high risk operations.  He left the PD and basically turned his back on all aspects of violence.    This person consistently scored perfectly on firearms qualifications courses including when under physical stress.  This person threw grenades into dangerous folks' houses and kicked their doors down.  Today, this person won't even touch meat because it was procured by violence.  When a person like that decides to not harm others, and to live peacefully in a life of harmony rather than conflict, he is a true pacifist, because he makes a choice to do so. 

Just because you choose not to train in martial arts, to not acquaint yourself with the tools and tactics of personal security; and instead, rely on persons better than yourself to maintain your physical safety, you do not become a pacifist.  You simply become unprepared.  In order to truly be a pacifist, you must choose to be a pacifist.  In order to choose to abstain from violence, you must be able to inflict it in the first place.  Similarly, you must be trained in the art of diffusing violence, which, in my opinion, is JUST as important as being able to inflict it, if not more.

Otherwise, you’re basically just proud of something that you have no control over - similar to the self-interested pride that many racists and ultra-nationalists espouse.  I understand and recognize tribe as important, but if your belonging to the tribe is your ONLY source of pride, then you are dead weight.  You must be a functional member ---> if you are a nationalist - serve your nation; if you are proud of your race or heritage, serve your race or heritage (provide jobs and opportunity for persons in your ethnic/ racial/ minority group - give them leadership and guidance because you understand your culture and will be able to connect with members of it in a way that outsiders never will.)  I am of the opinion that one’s own deeds and one's own ability should be the primary source of one’s pride, not necessarily one’s heritage or lineage...but that is for another day.

 “Only a warrior chooses pacifism, others are condemned to it.” Is a quote I encountered often in my martial arts training, and it is absolutely true.

If you’re unable to do something, then there is no “choosing” not to perform that something.  If you're still calling yourself a pacifist, that may be you trying to fill the gaping hole in your personal security plan with ego.  And when the glass break, when the bullets fly, and when the rapist/ robber/ drunk guy pulls out his knife, ego counts for shit.

“Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing.”
-  Robert E. Howard

Disclaimer (this should not be a surprise:) I make no claim to being a pacifist.  I had a job for many years where I had to inflict violence in order to protect life, property, and myself.  I sleep just fine at night too.  
I’m not over here on the internet trying to say I’m the toughest guy since Simo Häyhä either.  (I don't care if you disagree - I think he is the baddest bad ass of the entire history of western civilization's bad asses).  I’m not – there are way more tough, smart and dangerous mofos out there – there are people who are stronger, faster and more cunning than I am.  I am okay with that.  I have another good friend...let’s call him “Tripp” who put 2 rifle rounds through the same quarter at 500 yards.  I don’t think I’ll ever be able to do that, so don’t take this as patting-myself-on-the-back.  I'm glad he's on my side.
However, I did learn a few things about the nature of violence in my decades of martial arts training and years of police service. Feel free to agree...or to disagree with any of this – I am all ears.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

A New Look at Human Nature

By Pasquale Pulella

Many times in the past we anarchists have heard the argument that human nature is what’s stopping humanity from being free, is this true? Could it be that maybe were asking the wrong question? Could it be that the statist are right in some sense? Could it be that our human nature is our strong point? Could we evolve past our human nature? Should we? Have we already?

Human Nature?
                Human Nature is defined as the psychological physical and behavioral characteristics of humankind. Let’s examine what psychological characteristics are prevalent to mankind. What psychological condition that the “human nature” argument is addressing is the capacity for violence that each individual has. The common ground is that all humans are capable of violence; it is a basic survival characteristic to be able to use violence. This capacity for violence is necessary even today. The human capacity for violence is necessary not just for protection against other humans trying to govern them but also against other more violent species. So is the capacity for violence keeping us from achieving a free society? No. humans’ capacity for violence is what is needed to free humankind because when the state uses violence to govern others it is necessary for humans to defend themselves from such violence with other violence. But if we tried to evolve past violence what would happen is the ones who evolve more slowly will work for the government. Then their capacity for violence would become a dominant trait and then humanity would become even more enslaved. So is human nature keeping us from being free? Maybe it is true. Another factor in Human nature is the fact that the majority of humans allow themselves to be enslaved. In July of 1961 an experiment was done concerning the psychological condition of obedience to authority, the experiment was called the Milgram experiment. During the Milgram experiment an authority figure (the scientist) was present in the room. The volunteer would go into the room and be instructed to administer shocks to a person at the other side of the wall who pretended to be suffering extremely to the point of death. (For further information see The conclusion of the experiment was that most of the subjects would continue to administer the shocks. This concluded that the majority of humankind subjects itself to the will of authority without question. This is a sad truth about the human condition; the psychology of most humans is what makes people follow orders. The presence of an authority figure drives the human to do what he says because he has learned to obey the authority figure not necessarily to agree with him. I believe that this is due to the way us humans go through childhood. During childhood the human is taught right from wrong, good from bad, safe from not safe through violent force. The human child in today’s era is then taught to adapt to its surroundings by avoiding being punished by their parents, this is done by obeying the parents in some respect and hiding their activity in others. If we are to change the collective human psyche into a more disobedient one then we need to start raising our children with respect, NO PUNSHMENT, NO PROPAGANDA only reason with them. (For more information on peaceful parenting see However peaceful parenting teaches respect it does not teach violence, this may be a problem. In order to adapt we must teach victimless violence, meaning we must teach the future generation to be peaceful unless in self-defense (even against the state). This can be done through martial arts which is a physical art form designed to train a practitioner for combat. Martial arts also train the person to activate what is known to some as killer instinct, or the activation of the urge to use violence. It is important if many people learn to control their Killer instinct (to turn it on or off).

                Human evolution is the one way we as humans are subject to nature. While you can destroy the product of nature you cannot destroy nature itself. Evolution is Nature itself, all microscopic living organisms have evolved from another species, always taking on characteristics that improve the spices survival. Mankind is no different from any other spices its intelligence is a survival characteristic. The gorilla has strength and size, the chimpanzee has agility, the buffalo has its strength in numbers. For all these characteristics none of them are like the human, the human has intelligence and the human is not dying off like the previous species. But like all living things it is subject to evolution. During the age when the eastern planes of Africa where going through constant geological changes a certain ape species began to develop an enlarged forehead which made room for an enlarged Neo-Cortex. The word Neo-Cortex means “New Brain” this is the part of the brain that is responsible for the reasoning, which is what makes the human so unique. This early ape was far from human but it certainly had many characteristics, such characteristics are walking upright, enlarged forehead, the use of tools, and a family structure. In this family structure is known as a tribe and it is believed that until man discovered fire the man who could pick up the biggest rock would be tribe leader.  This is not government however it has implanted a certain psyche of authority in the early human because it will mean that future humans would learn to respond obediently to force. This is only a theory not necessarily fact however it provides a good framework for how human obedience to authority came to be. The first Homo Sapiens was also organized into tribes however these primates are the same species as us they have developed language, tools, hunting strategy, a human sized Neo cortex and a social structure; they are human.  Since the Homo sapiens, we have developed government, money, and large organized religion in some ways we have evolved and in others we have devolved. The institutions that early civilizations developed were a survival mechanism to increase population and allow large amounts of humans to coexist. These were brutal dictatorships but there were also population growths. These were known as the five civilizations and they were similar in many ways. They all were located near a large river which allowed large agricultural development; they had a God king, a priest class, a political hierarchy, and a military. During the time of these five civilizations the God king was believed to be a god sent to earth to govern the people and everyone knows you can’t disobey the word of god so obedience was demanded and expected of you. Later in life during the rise and fall of empires and the death of god kings the lie of the god king was broken. Then the rise of the God Sent kings, the ruler who was human but was given the mandate from heaven and therefore had the divine right to rule. Further the mandate of heaven is broken so the lie of the king being a flawed sinful but necessary takes its place and the Magna Charta was written to limit the power of the king. Later it was discovered that mankind ought to be free so the roman style republic was installed in the US, France, and later other places as well. The great lie there is that a government is a necessary evil and everyone should get the chance to exercise ownership of each other in order to maintain a “stable society”. And this is where we are now we are still ruling by force however we have come a long way in seeing through the lie. And the final lie has begun to break. Since the French revolution and the writings of Proudhon more and more people are realizing that there is NO justification for the state and all religions and financial institutions who support the state are STEALING from and enslaving us. What will come next anarchy? Hopefully. It definitely seems that the direction humankind is heading in IS in fact anarchy. It may be 100 years it may be 1000 years but surely enough anarchy must take place. The only question is how soon? How many people will have to die at the hands of the state before we can evolve past this barbaric system we call government.

Psychology of the state

The state is made up of people and if those people decide that the state should not exist it will not exist. The state is not a physical tangible entity it is a system in which everyone has a functional job to feed the tyranny. Once the idea is broken people will resist the government workers will go on strike, and the police will take off their badges. But will the idea ever break in that manner? Yes it happened that way during the Spanish civil war. If enough people in the right places decide to resist both inside the government and outside the government the state CANNOT exist. Without the police to force taxation the politicians, their secretary’s, the tax collectors, will find other employment. If the state continues to print money all that is needed is to not accept it as money, if money is not acknowledged as money than it immediately loses value. All power structures are psychological in nature weather that is an organized religion, a state, a monarchy, a bank, a money system, a school, or a prison. Once they psychology changes the power structure changes with it. And in this regard human nature determines the freedom of human kind the question posed is human nature stopping us from being free. The short answer is YES!!!

Psychology of freedom

                Since the state is a power structure and all power structures are psychological in nature, it is the job of the propaganda to enslave the mind and it is the job of counter propaganda to free the mind. Human Psychology is human nature, ideas are what drive humans; the state is an idea therefore human nature IS what is stopping us from being free. However Human nature is NOT constant and the psyche of each human are determined by the ideas they are exposed to, and so is the behavior. If a thief from a bad neighborhood puts a knife against someone to steal their money it is the place they grew up in that showed him a different survival characteristic than anyone from a peaceful neighborhood it is his violent upbringing that taught him violence a violent past usually leads to a violent future. However nobody can become who they do not choose to be. Should you take a thief and teach him to sell drugs instead of steal would he not serve the world instead of act as a parasite? Who loses? One man sells a drug that another man wants, is there a victim? No. if you teach someone to change the philosophy they live by or the ideas the hold close to their hearts they will likely not respond kindly. However people can convince others of changing their behavior and it is done constantly. Sending someone to jail does the opposite of improve society, it only leads to more violence. The psychology of freedom is simple many people must go through some behavioral training to question authority, this behavioral training does not have to come in the form of forceful indoctrination but should begin with the youth in free schooling. Free schooling is an idea that the teacher of the class is not an authority to be trusted but a guide in one’s ability to seek the truth. In short it does not teach people what to think but how to think. Once a large enough portion of the human population is successfully trained in questioning authority then the idea of the state is weakened. This was one of the many successes we can learn from in the Spanish civil war.
Counter Propaganda
                Counter propaganda is propaganda designed to break the paradigm of the establishment in any power structure. It is designed to show the lies of the state and its propaganda arm specifically. Here in the US there are many people who engage in counter propaganda, not necessarily anarchists but they do ok. These people are Alex Jones of Infowars; Com Democracy Now; Matt Drugde of the Drudgereport; Adam Kokesh (Anarcho-Capitalist); Keith Preston of (Pan-Anarchist); these were just a few. These people’s jobs are to weaken the propaganda of the particular power structure or to break the idea of Statism altogether. And thus the big lie of the state being necessary will be broken. During the Catalonia revolution of the 30’s there were many such counter propagandists who printed newsletters promoting anarchy and they began printing long before the revolution even started, eventually the paradigm changed and Catalonia was liberated if only for a short time.

                My conclusion is that human nature is stopping us from being free. We must change human nature to break the idea of Authority, it has been done before and it can be done again. Through free schooling, Counter propaganda, and peaceful parenting the world will learn to be free.  And the psychology of the state will be erased, a revolution will begin and It will be up to the people of that time to decide how the state will be overthrown.