In your opinion, what is the best way to organize a government, and what should the government be able to do? Even though I am new to TI, it's obvious have a wide variety of opinions on this forum about what the role of government (if there is government at all!) should be, both in economics and personal freedom. Please post your favorite type and scope of government, WHY, and feel free to comment on other's opinions!
I'm not a fan of a set government or society, I believe that society is the root of unhappiness. We never feel our best if we are constantly editing ourselves to fit in the caste society has left for us. Maybe I'm just an animalistic oriented mind, but I resent governments because I don't think they should have as much power as they do. Who are they to tell us how to live our lives? Now I know lots of people argue that anarchies are dangerous, but there are so many people out there that would do the morally right thing it doesn't matter. Theoretically if we lived in an anarchy, and I saw someone subjugating another person or being cruel in any way, I would cut them down where they stand. You can't have an anarchy if people are only thinking about themselves, we must take care of each other. That's how the hunter gatherers lived thousands of years ago, and their culture was freeing and open minded, even more progressive then most cultures today.
I know that neither are perfect, but I really like the political and ecnomic structure that America has currently: a representative democracy (with separation of powers/checks and balances) and slighlty regulated capitalism. And the biggest reason I like them is because a) they usually allow for significant amounts of personal freedom and b) they're both self-correcting. Even though occasionally things do go wrong, eventually things will straighten themselves out.
Who are you?
Ugh. My username will not work. I try to get it to work. It doesn't. Sorry.
I really have nothing against "Society." It's the use of violence within a society that I object to, especially when the violence is considered "just" becuase it's done in the name of the the State for some fabricated "mutual benefit," "general welfare," or "national security."
Unlike Sorla, who sees the Society as the root of all evil, I attribute our problems to man's fundamentally flawed human nature. This means that no society, not even anarchy, will ever be perfect and abuses will always exist. Anarchy, however, limits these abuses to the individual, or a most communal level, rather than letting them proliferate through a huge geographical area.
(If you've ever read any of Wendell Berry's work you'll know what I mean by "limitation of damage or abuse." He talks about it in terms of technology -- if I have a tractor, I can take out a hill in front of my house in a matter of hours, thus irrevokably harming the land. But if all I have is a shovel, then I'm limited in the amount of damage I can do.)
The same principle applies to governments. If all I have is my rifle, I'm limited in th eamount of damage I can do. But an army of hundreds of men with rifles can effectively force an entire population to accept their every demand. In the same way that we must critically examine new technologies to determine their impacts, we must carefully consider the impact of government(s) on the health of our communities.
This leads to the Non-Agression Principle. It is generally accepted that murder and robbery are serious crimes when committed by an individual. They are also considered serious crimes when committed by a group of people -- say a gang of thieves. But it is considered a benefit to society when a certain group of people (called "Government") steals, murders, and oppresses certain other people in the interests of the "General Welfare."
Anarchists see this as the slavery it is. Any government that relys on coercion to further its ambitions is fundamentally immoral. And any government is composed of flawed individuals, thus leading to abuses of power which would be minimized in a stateless society. These are the two main reasons I would prefer anarchy to any other government system.
ImagineDangerous talked about a "representative democracy." But life is not a spectator sport. I might root for the Georgia Bulldogs, and they could be considered my representatives, but I'm not in the game. If I were in the game, it wouldn't make sense to call the other players my representatives. Teammates, yes. Representatives, no. And because I am in the game of life, it doesn't make sense to say that other men are my representatives.
You might could tell us how you would organize a government, Mr. Anon. :)
do I want to debate the NAP, is it really worth another commie running dog debate
I consider myself a participatory democrat with marxist and feminist sympathies. Participation in government needs to go beyond basic voting. I go on the assumption that people are naturally altruistic and capable of looking out for their own welfare. If people are not altruistic, or interested in being good democratic citizens, they can be taught to be. It is circumstance which has caused people to loose sight of innate qualities.
Marxism assumes that the ills of society go back to economic inequality. I believe this too be true.
Feminist theory assumes that women are unduly disadvanged, and seeks to repair this. I am not a radical feminist. Rather, I beleive that the most important goal of the modern day feminist is to get a politcal representation which is more equal. The experiences of women have been much different than that of men. As such, women have a different set of cultural values and views, which would alter the decisions made in governments.
Midnight: Thats an inacurate reading of Marxism, it believes that society's ills are the result of the control of the means of production by one class, which makes another work them. This control creates class struggle, mainly by instinct, where the oppressed class(es) resist.
I can't comment on feminism
I think that the best best government would be a mild form of socialism. It would be a democracy, although not direct. There would be at least five political parties, hopefully more. The parties would form fluid alliances in order to pass legislature. Economically, this nation would have a market sytem, so that the government is not in control of the means of production (i.e. not too powerful). However, the rich would be severely taxed, and the money used to ensure that all people within the borders of this nation (notice that I did not say citizens...) have a good standard of living and equal educational opportunities.
I don't think anarchism is the way to go: crime would rise, communities that are not self sustaining would collapse, and it probably wouldn't last very long anyway. There will always be people who are ambitious, or who think that their leadership will help their community, and there are also always people who are willing to follow authority. Within a single generation, at least, the anarchy would be gone.
Also about anarchy: if the government were to some how go away, thereby creating an anarchy, there would still be a group in power. The rich could easily gain control of the nation and it would become a plutocracy (which is the worst possible form of government, in my opinion)
Bright: Communities would be federated in a volunarty manner, where each group would deal with its own issue while turning to the federation for larger issues (global warming, disaster ETC).
different communities would organize in there own ways, as best suited local culture and needs, the Zappatistas Army of National Liberation reflects the way you might have peasant/rural societies post revolution. While the CNT in Spain show a way that you could have industrial life organized.
Sorry, not an inaccurate reading. I simply phrased it differently then you did. By economic inequality, I meant that the means of production are not evenly distributed, meaning one class controls them, which leads to class struggle. I have read Karl Marx.