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    (Original post by anarchism101)
    All economies require economic planning. Capitalist firms plan their production processes. However, if you take socialism at its actual meaning, worker ownership of the means of production, that would mean the decentralisation to the individual level. Anything further up the tier (i.e. between 'bottom up' and 'top down') would come about as a result of free association.
    The Capitalist firms are responding to the price mechanism which is acting as a 'hidden hand' to allocate resources in the economy. You can plan to meet the demands of the price mechanism but it is a different use of the word 'planning' compared to 'economic planning', which is the process of allocating resources in the economy according to some other basis such as 'justice' or 'fairness' or just what side of bed the Planner go out off that morning, and by definition requires to higher agency greater than individual Capitalist firms etc, normally would mean the state.
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    (Original post by anarchism101)
    All economies require economic planning. Capitalist firms plan their production processes. However, if you take socialism at its actual meaning, worker ownership of the means of production, that would mean the decentralisation to the individual level. Anything further up the tier (i.e. between 'bottom up' and 'top down') would come about as a result of free association.
    I have basically responded to this in the other thread. I'd add that 'worker ownership' actually solves nothing regarding how economic resources are allocated in an economy. It just freezes the economy in time and says 'the workers now own everything'. It doesn't say for example how the economy should respond if there is more demand for apples, or if nobody wants to buy shell suits anymore.
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    My bad. Got confused.
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    (Original post by Adam C)
    I had very vague socialist sentiments before I began to study 20th century history, reading about figures such as Lenin, Trotsky and Mao. I admired their ideals but couldn't bring myself to agree with their authoritarian methods. After that, I read some of Marx, Proudhon, Bakunin and Kropotkin and combined my socialism with anarchism.

    Ask me things, if you like.

    I also read about those figures and found myself having a similar reaction to regarding ideas/methods. I have also read some Marx, but nothing from the other three. Could you recommend any particular works of theirs?

    In a stateless society, how do we maintain statelessness?

    Thanks
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    (Original post by anarchism101)
    Usually some form of gift economy. Personally in anarchism I think there'd be a mix - gift economies are likely on a small scale, but more long-distance transactions would have more quantified forms of credit.
    Can I ask what you mean by gift economies?
    Thanks
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    There are parts of Marx I agree with, and parts that I don't. I wouldn't go so far as to call myself a Marxist, but I generally agree with his analysis of capitalism and society. While we're on Marxism, I'd also recommend reading Antonio Gramsci's theory of Cultural Hegemony.

    Anyway, as for the others, Proudhon's most important work is "What is Property?". I'm not a huge fan of Proudhon overall; though he was the first to call himself an anarchist, he was a mutualist, and I'm not really a fan of market socialism. His work on property is solid though. Bakunin's most important work is "God and the State". "Marxism, freedom and the state" is also worth a look. Kropotkin's seminal works are "The Conquest of Bread" and "Mutual Aid". I'm also a fan of his brief critique of the Bolsheviks, "The Russian Revolution and the Soviet Government". Most, if not all of that can be found at www.marxists.org.

    As for maintaining statelessness, are you asking how it should be defended soon after its establishment, or what should be done if someone in a hypothetical communist society objects to it?
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    (Original post by prog2djent)
    OnlOnly two types of people think scandanavian nations are socialist, or europe for that matter, American tea party republican types who think anything that isn't whatever the tea party is about right now is socialism, and idiot American "liberals" who say stuff like "socialism isn't all bad, look at europe and place like sweden, socialism just means the government takes care of some industry ..."

    HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUR

    DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU UUUUUUR
    I think it's definitely not a marginal view. It's quite common for people to view these countries as being socialist so I don't even know what that term means anymore. If it means what I think it means then they're very far from being socialist.

    I think the assumption is, or the popular view of socialism is connected to some kind of strict wealth/income egalitarianism. So any country with low levels of income inequality must somehow be "socialist". But it's, imo, a false definition. I view socialism in the traditional, Marxian sense. The first question is who owns what. Then we can talk about redistributive measures or state enforced healthcare (both of which were reactionary measures adopted by liberal and conservatives parties in the late 19th, early 20th centuries).

    If capital is mostly privately owned, IMO, you don't have socialism. It's perverse to call the birthplaces of IKEA and Lego (i.e. Sweden and Denmark) "socialist".
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    (Original post by Adam C)
    There are parts of Marx I agree with, and parts that I don't. I wouldn't go so far as to call myself a Marxist, but I generally agree with his analysis of capitalism and society. While we're on Marxism, I'd also recommend reading Antonio Gramsci's theory of Cultural Hegemony.

    Anyway, as for the others, Proudhon's most important work is "What is Property?". I'm not a huge fan of Proudhon overall; though he was the first to call himself an anarchist, he was a mutualist, and I'm not really a fan of market socialism. His work on property is solid though. Bakunin's most important work is "God and the State". "Marxism, freedom and the state" is also worth a look. Kropotkin's seminal works are "The Conquest of Bread" and "Mutual Aid". I'm also a fan of his brief critique of the Bolsheviks, "The Russian Revolution and the Soviet Government". Most, if not all of that can be found at www.marxists.org.

    As for maintaining statelessness, are you asking how it should be defended soon after its establishment, or what should be done if someone in a hypothetical communist society objects to it?
    Thanks for the recommendations, I will try to read them. On the question I suppose I was meaning mainly in the first sense, though both meanings are interesting questions.
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    Well, most communists and anarchists agree that the only method of establishing a communist society will be a proleterian (working class) revolution. Workers will seize control of their workplaces and form councils to decide how they'll be run. Obviously, the capitalist establishment won't allow this and will have to be fought. I think I should make it clear here, that this won't be some small gang standing up to a whole government; the revolution can only succeed in revolutionary circumstances, where a large portion of workers are united in their goals. Historically, such revolutions have taken place during times of great social upheaval, and workers took up arms to defend their revolution. Some good examples of anarchist revolutions in history are during the Spanish Revolution, in which all of Catalonia, most of Aragon and other surrounding areas were run in an anarchist way, and the Ukrainian Free Territory, which existed at the time of the Russian Revolution and comprised about a third of Ukraine. An important figure in the latter was Nestor Makhno, who's definitely worth reading more about.
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    (Original post by Adam C)
    Workers will seize control of their workplaces and form councils to decide how they'll be run.

    Catalonia .
    Massive failure
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    (Original post by anarchism101)
    All economies require economic planning. Capitalist firms plan their production processes..
    I don't see how you equate one businesses planning one portion of its operations as to represnting a whole way of running an economy.
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    (Original post by prog2djent)
    Massive failure
    The worker organisation, or the revolution as a whole? There wasn't a lot the anarchists could do about being attacked by Franco and the Soviet backed communists at once.

    Here's George Orwell, who fought there, describing the situation in Aragon, 1936.

    "I had dropped more or less by chance into the only community of any size in Western Europe where political consciousness and disbelief in capitalism were more normal than their opposites. Up here in Aragon one was among tens of thousands of people, mainly though not entirely of working-class origin, all living at the same level and mingling on terms of equality. In theory it was perfect equality, and even in practice it was not far from it. There is a sense in which it would be true to say that one was experiencing a foretaste of Socialism, by which I mean that the prevailing mental atmosphere was that of Socialism. Many of the normal motives of civilized life—snobbishness, money-grubbing, fear of the boss, etc.--had simply ceased to exist. The ordinary class-division of society had disappeared to an extent that is almost unthinkable in the money-tainted air of England; there was no one there except the peasants and ourselves, and no one owned anyone else as his master."
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    (Original post by Adam C)
    The worker organisation, or the revolution as a whole? There wasn't a lot the anarchists could do about being attacked by Franco and the Soviet backed communists at once.
    Yeah, those anarchists eh?

    The ones that went round killing people based on class and political affiliation, those than burnt down churches and property that would have been useful to them, and the massive inefficient, forced, and coercive collectivisation.

    Those, innocent ittwle bitty anarcwists?
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    (Original post by prog2djent)
    Yeah, those anarchists eh?

    The ones that went round killing people based on class and political affiliation, those than burnt down churches and property that would have been useful to them, and the massive inefficient, forced, and coercive collectivisation.

    Those, innocent ittwle bitty anarcwists?
    Do you have any source for collectivisation being forced and inefficient? I've read some things about coersion, but they generally come from anti-socialist sources like Bolloten, as if capitalism isn't coersive in itself. Also, in "The Anarchist Collectives", Sam Dolgoff writes that:

    "Indeed, in many collectivised areas, the efficiency with which an enterprise worked by far exceeded that of a comparable one in nationalised or private sectors."
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    This guy

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    (Original post by snozzle)
    There's no such thing in the realm of the possible, it's a chimera.

    Socialism is an organised economy, not a market one. What's socialist about free economic agents being allowed to freely respond to the price mechanism and make economic choices as they see fit?
    If we accept that socialism is the common ownership of the means of production then it is clear that socialism and markets are compatible. In the system I tend to advocate, society owners the factories, tractors etc., but firms rent these items from society i.e. they pay a capital assets tax. It's all semantics really, the point is that these firms would be democratically ran, without a capitalist class accumulating vast personal wealth. These firms then operate on a market, competing with each other and people, as 'free economic agents', create demand through their consumption choices in the market.

    The main difference is that operating as a capitalist by hiring other people as workers would be outlawed, as it opens doors to the grotesque inequality we see today. Investment would also be controlled by democratically accountable institutions, rather than wealthy individuals.
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    (Original post by Drapetomanic)
    Investment would also be controlled by democratically accountable institutions, rather than wealthy individuals.
    This is economic planning.

    As well as decisions about where to allocate capital, such institutions would have to deicide where to take Capital away from sometimes, or your economy would just end up highly inefficient.
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    As you may well realise very shortly, i am not a socialist! Nonetheless, this stuff made some interesting reading, and I was just thinking about two or three points that I saw:

    (Original post by anarchism101)
    If you are a socialist, then you would believe that genuine equality of opportunity would result in more or less equality of outcome.
    Surely this concept can't be true? If everyone starts from the same place, then some people will succeed, and others will fail.

    To use a running race analogy, if you start a 100m race between me and Usain Bolt, with both of us starting from the same point, he will doubtless beat me by a pretty sizeable margin. We have equality of opportunity in terms of the start line, but he would still succeed where I failed, so the outcome is completely unequal. Even if I underwent the same training programme, I might gain a second or so, but my (lack of!) natural ability means I could never beat him.

    The same is true of success in life. You can give everyone the same schooling and education, but some people will be better than others. Equality of outcome is, surely, impossible (and in my eyes, pretty undesirable - why would we want everyone to be the same?).

    As a side note, a lot of capitalists agree with the idea of equality of opportunity, as you can get the best talent to the top (meritocracy style).

    (Original post by Adam C)
    What kind of socialism do you support?

    I'm a libertarian socialist (specifically an Anarcho-Communist). Contrary to some beliefs, this is not a contradiction in terms. Anarcho-Communists believe in a stateless, classless society where money has been abolished and all means of production are in common ownership.
    Let's say, for argument's sake, that this system was introduced. The anarchism part of it means - although correct me if I'm wrong - that there are no laws or constraints on human behaviour.

    What would happen if a group of people got together and decided that they wanted to trade using money? Is this not a scenario where the idea falls down? I would have thought that the communist side of the system would want to ban the money, but the anarchist side would prevent it from doing so.

    (Original post by Adam C)
    Some good examples of anarchist revolutions in history are during the Spanish Revolution, in which all of Catalonia, most of Aragon and other surrounding areas were run in an anarchist way, and the Ukrainian Free Territory, which existed at the time of the Russian Revolution and comprised about a third of Ukraine. An important figure in the latter was Nestor Makhno, who's definitely worth reading more about.
    Sorry, just saw this too! Again, I know shamefully little about this topic, so I apologise for that! But isn't what you've said above quite oxymoronic? My understanding of anarchism was that there was no 'running' of anything, so how did this work in the places you've mentioned?


    By the way, I don't mean anything I've said as an insult to anyone's intelligence! I just think this is an interesting topic...
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    (Original post by FrogInABog)
    Let's say, for argument's sake, that this system was introduced. The anarchism part of it means - although correct me if I'm wrong - that there are no laws or constraints on human behaviour.
    That's why it cannot work, since there is no state to provide protection. You cannot have freedom without laws to uphold that freedom. In a 'state of nature' there is nothing to stop the strongest man (or group of men) oppressing everyone else. You have in the words of Hobbes "war or all against all" where life is "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short".
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    (Original post by snozzle)
    The Capitalist firms are responding to the price mechanism which is acting as a 'hidden hand' to allocate resources in the economy. You can plan to meet the demands of the price mechanism but it is a different use of the word 'planning' compared to 'economic planning', which is the process of allocating resources in the economy according to some other basis such as 'justice' or 'fairness' or just what side of bed the Planner go out off that morning, and by definition requires to higher agency greater than individual Capitalist firms etc, normally would mean the state.
    In capitalist economies the state is heavily involved too, to produce outcomes beneficial to its vested interests. Sometimes that's by influencing the 'price mechanism', sometimes not. But planning is planning. However, I want that planning, whatever level it takes place at (it could well end up being at a similar level to capitalist firms), to be based on a bottom-up rather than top-down approach.

    (Original post by snozzle)
    I have basically responded to this in the other thread. I'd add that 'worker ownership' actually solves nothing regarding how economic resources are allocated in an economy. It just freezes the economy in time and says 'the workers now own everything'. It doesn't say for example how the economy should respond if there is more demand for apples, or if nobody wants to buy shell suits anymore.
    Well that is a separate issue that different socialists have different opinions on. Worker control could entail a large range of different systems.

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