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Forum Post: Can Anarchy Really Work?

Posted 10 years ago on Dec. 9, 2011, 4:46 p.m. EST by ImaDreamer (82)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

We all want to be free to do whatever we please without government telling us what to do. (The word "govern" means "to limit.") So the idea of anarchy, total freedom, seems very appealing.

But anarchy means there is no rule of law, no one to protect the weak from the strong. Those with power will use it to gain more power, resulting in violent power struggles, and soon anarchy will cease to exist as the most powerful gain control over everything and everyone in a dictatorship. There is no alternative to this outcome.

The closest workable alternative to unlimited freedom is a Direct Democracy where every individual can personally vote on every policy enacted by the government which imposes limits on what individuals are allowed to do.

If you believe the occupy movement should support Direct Democracy as one of its objectives, you can make that known by clicking "like" below.



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[-] 4 points by Demian (497) from San Francisco, CA 10 years ago

Anarchy doesnt mean that there would be no laws. Although I dont like to use wikipedia as a source this is a pretty accurate article describing what anarchisim is really about. Or at least the brand of anarchisim that I subscribe to.


Here's another good site on the topic.


[-] -2 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

Anarchy, by its very definition, means absence of governance. Laws can not exist without some means of enforcing them. Any system which has laws is not anarchy.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 10 years ago

Anarchy is not a substitute for freedom. It is what you get when you shove the major portion of your population against the wall.

[-] 2 points by sato (148) 10 years ago

Anarchism is what we have right now. The difference is there is a condition and that is you need to be rich. If you are rich law doesn't apply to you. Tax havens are available to you. Influential people are interested in you. Basically you are in power.

I agree with direct democracy to an extent. But I think it would be chaotic to ask on every single policy. Maybe just on really important issues it would be ok but we can't pay an election every single day.

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

What we have now is not anarchy, but a form of elitism that lets the rich get away with a lot, but not everything, and a semi-totalitarianism controlling everyone else.

The "informed democracy" I am suggesting would not require everyone to vote on everything. We would have a system similar to what we have now, but "representatives" would be called managers who would run day to day operations. The people would have a means, however, of changing the decisions of managers and firing them at any time.

[-] 2 points by whisper (212) 10 years ago

The principle of freedom is protected only when all individuals recognize individual rights. A government is needed in order to protect people's rights from those who do not recognize them. That is the only legitimate purpose of government. The only relevant thing to keep in mind when creating a plan for the structure of government and the method by which its representatives are to be chosen is: "Will this organization efficiently protect individual rights against threats both foreign and domestic?".

[-] 0 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

I have to disagree that protecting rights is the only legitimate purpose of government. If you break your leg while hiking alone who is going to search, find and rescue you? If you are born poor, one person owns all the land where crops can be grown and your children are starving, who is going to provide the opportunity for you to feed your kids? What if someone buys all the land surrounding your house and won't give you permission to to cross his property so you can go to work? What right do you have to trespass on someone else's private property? Insuring fairness and opportunity is also a valid and necessary role of government.

[-] 2 points by whisper (212) 10 years ago

If you go hiking alone, you should let someone know that you are going to do so and when you will be back. They will search for you if you don't return when you say you will. Are you suggesting that it is the proper purpose of government to constantly walk all hiking trails in the united states looking for people with broken legs? If someone buys all the land around your house, you may have to pay them in order to cross it. Such is the situation with any town, county, city, and state. You pay taxes in order to live there. Now, I don't think that property and income taxes are appropriate, as they are violations of our sovereign rights, but the principle is the same. The government claims ownership of the land through taxation and demands that you pay for its use, just as a private property owner would demand that you pay him a fee for crossing his land.

[-] 2 points by nitrusb (8) 10 years ago

Govern derives from the Latin "Gubernare," which means "to steer." I do not support direct democracy applied to 300+ million people. Nothing substantial would ever get done, and the majority would absolutely rule the minority. Moreover, the tension that arises from total government paralysis would result in social unrest that a few strongmen would capitalize on and thereby end the direct democracy experiment altogether. We need to pay our dues to the advantages of representative democracy. If you want to see a case study in direct democracy's failures, observe California's proposition system.

[-] 1 points by AndyJ0hn (129) 10 years ago

some form of direct democracy works in Switzerland (referendums)

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

The "governor" on a small gasoline engine "limits" the RPM so the engine won't explode, though I can see how the English use of that word can come from "to steer."

First, a well defined government rarely requires a change in law. Business regulations can be implemented by elected managers, with public vote by an informed democracy able to change those laws whenever necessary. The main difference between managers and representatives is that managers can be removed from their positions at any time. The people retain the power, not the "representatives."

Second, just as now, few people will take the time to vote, so decisions will be made by those willing to take the time to understand the issues. Another name for democracy is "mob rule" and if steps are not taken to require people to understand the issue they wish to vote upon chaos and injustice will result. Voters should be required to read one page of material (or watch a video or audio presentation no longer than three minutes) outlining the pros and cons of an issue, which would be prepared by cooperation of people representing both sides (if there are sides). Voting will require at least some effort, which should reduce the mob rule effect, so it would not be expected that whole populations would be voting. The important point is that the people CAN vote, and no law would get forced upon anyone without the change for them to have a say in what happens.

Prop 8 in CA was taken over by big money, much of it from the Mormon church. A law prohibiting paid political advertising would have prevented that. If the people could vote to take money out of politics that would happen immediately. Waiting decades for so-called representatives to do what the people would certainly do in a heartbeat is why representative government has failed us.

[-] 2 points by Frizzle (520) 10 years ago

Laws themselves don't really prevent the problems they try to patch, they just make it possible to punish those that break them. I don't think you can just throw away laws and expect everything to work out. But you can make laws obsolete by fixing the underlying cause.

So we have to ask ourselves. What problems are we trying to fix and what is the root cause of those problems.

[-] 3 points by RobPenn (116) 10 years ago

The problem is people. Good luck fixing that one.

[-] 2 points by Frizzle (520) 10 years ago

The problem is understanding people

[-] 1 points by RobPenn (116) 10 years ago

We can understand people just fine.

People, even the absolute best and most worthy among us, tend to do things that suck. People who have money and power have a different way of judging other people and situations. Humans are evolutionarily predisposed to costly signaling, which means predisposition to wanting more money than we have.

What America needs is a change in the people. Any change in government, laws, or the market, will simply be a quick fix that doesn't last.

[-] 2 points by Frizzle (520) 10 years ago

I agree that people need to change as well. But changing people and changing their environment are directly connected. You can't change one without expecting the other to change as well.

And interesting enough, Occupy seems to be doing both. At one side changing the mindset of people. And on the other side pushing for a change in the very system that is causing all the suffering.

[-] 0 points by simplesimon (121) 10 years ago

Truer words were never spoken. The only thing that will ever be solved here is typing practice.

[-] 1 points by ubercaput (175) from New York City, NY 10 years ago

I do not want to vote on every policy.

[-] 0 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

No one has to vote on anything, but everyone CAN vote on essentially everything. If we could all vote now there would be a more equitable distribution of wealth, corporations would not be allowed to spend unlimited amounts of money on political campaigns, we'd all have health care and free higher education, to name but a few changes true democracy would implement.

[-] 1 points by ubercaput (175) from New York City, NY 10 years ago

Direct Democracy does not lead to this. What you really want is a political system that achieves it for you without consuming your time and effort.

The way to obstruct a political process is to let them vote on everything, and recount and reorganise.

[-] 1 points by MVSN (768) from Stockton, CA 10 years ago

I truly cannot fathom how the hell anyone can even begin to take anarchism seriously.

[-] 2 points by ronimacarroni (1089) 10 years ago

Its not unreasonable.

The most popular branch of anarchism is anarcho-syndicalism. It favors non-hierarchical workplaces ran by the workers, money would also be replaced with labour-vouchers in order to avoid the accumulation of capital so people would not be able to make money from money. The government would seize to exist since under such a system since the workplaces would take its place. Chomsky calls it "libertarian socialism"

The other one is anarcho-communism, which goes a step further and gets rid of private property and money altogether.

[-] 2 points by ronimacarroni (1089) 10 years ago

One of the things Chomsky has suggested is that if a company goes bankrupt and the managers abandon them, then the workers should just manage and run it themselves.

Its kind of controversial, but it has worked pretty well in the past.

[-] 0 points by ronimacarroni (1089) 10 years ago

Anarchism does have disadvantages though. The main one would be that the military would have to be reorganized and would be less efficient if its hierarchy was done away with. It might also be hard to coordinate between what people want or need at the time.

[-] 1 points by CrowPotkin (22) from Holbrook, NY 10 years ago

Virtually every organization study confirms that decentralization is the most efficient way of organizing any group of agents.

Don't let the Black Army or the CNT-FAI get in the way of your ignorance, though.


[-] 0 points by MVSN (768) from Stockton, CA 10 years ago

Interesting. How would a country like that deal with other countries?

[-] 1 points by ronimacarroni (1089) 10 years ago

They wouldn't

Unless it was the military, which would either work as militias or be allowed some degree of hierarchy. Having a general in an anarchist society might not be the best idea though... I guess that's the complicated part.

[-] 0 points by MVSN (768) from Stockton, CA 10 years ago

I don't understand how they wouldn't have to deal with other countries.

[-] 1 points by ronimacarroni (1089) 10 years ago

Oh they would. If the United States became an anarchist society and its army wasn't functional it would be devoured by foreign countries. That's what happened to Spain during the Spanish civil war... I guess I'm contradicting myself. :\

[-] 1 points by JoeTheFarmer (2654) 10 years ago

We have some direct democracy right now. I vote in every election and the ballot has questions on it every time. Should we but open space, should we add on to the school, should we pay for after school activities, should sports betting be legal in the state...

The problem is when it comes time to vote on an issue only 25% of the people show up, usually less. Now of those 25% only about a third took the time to read and understand the ballot questions. Because of this we have chosen representative government. The politicians are supposed to be devoted to understanding the issues and making decisions based on their knowledge and experience. I can’t imagine going to the people to have them vote on every issue each day. It is just no practical.

[-] 0 points by 4TheHumanSocietyProject (504) 10 years ago

the goal of anarchy is to obtain equality.... I had to learn to do the right thing after I did everything wrong. Trial and error. This transition will be painful but it will work. Only we the people who do the correct thing and show the common man what equality means.We can teach the citizens of the world. =)

[-] 0 points by CrowPotkin (22) from Holbrook, NY 10 years ago

ImaDreamer, do you often define the positions of your opponents before they have an opportunity to elaborate on them? Or are you new to this whole strawman making job you've worked out for yourself?

Your arguments smack of elitism and a pretentious understanding of the material which you obviously have no knowledge of. What was the last work written by an anarchist that you read? My wage: never.

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

How many books have people read saying God created the laws set down by some church? If you tend to dismiss all the arguments which follow from that premise because you understand the initial premise is flawed, you probably wouldn't continue to read such books. I have that same response when attempting to read so-called anarchist literature which insists that everyone will follow rules without the need for a government to enforce them. Lovely ideal. I could be part of such a society without causing anyone harm, and so could most people. But have you ever tried to reason with a meth head who can't remember how he got to where he is and thinks you are out to harm him? Or some drunk tough guy in a bar who wants to fight anyone at all just to prove how tough he is?

This is an imperfect world and the object should be to find ways to make it better - ways that will work. Just because someone writes a book saying people will all follow the rules without being coerced by threat of force doesn't make the premise true, and it runs contrary to human experience. The evidence that anarchy won't work is all around us. The lack of sufficient, ENFORCED regulation is what made the 1% what they are today.

[-] 1 points by CrowPotkin (22) from Holbrook, NY 10 years ago

"How many books have people read saying God created the laws set down by some church?"

How is this at all relevant?

"If you tend to dismiss all the arguments which follow from that premise because you understand the initial premise is flawed, you probably wouldn't continue to read such books."

Except in no way have you demonstrated that the initial premise is flawed. Indeed, what I have seen you come up with are strawmen understandings of a culture, theory, and movement that extends over two and a half centuries. Instead of addressing the suggestions of Kropotkin, the analysis of Bakunin, or the revelations of Proudhon in any fashion approaching intellectual honesty, you quite literally invent positions that no honest or reasonable anarchist would ever maintain.

But I wonder to myself, what use is there in pointing this inconvenient fact out? By your own admission, you're categorically unfamiliar with the topic you're discussing and yet you see no problem with offering a critique of a point of view that is literally over your head. This is as intellectually repugnant as a right-wing ideologue going on about Obama's Marxist (or Maoist, depending on who you're reading) credentials, when the very suggestion that Obama is a Marxist (or Maoist) would come off as laughable to any genuine Marxist (or Maoist).

"I have that same response when attempting to read so-called anarchist literature which insists that everyone will follow rules without the need for a government to enforce them. Lovely ideal. I could be part of such a society without causing anyone harm, and so could most people. But have you ever tried to reason with a meth head who can't remember how he got to where he is and thinks you are out to harm him? Or some drunk tough guy in a bar who wants to fight anyone at all just to prove how tough he is?"

Oh man, you're so right! Because with a government, we wouldn't have these things! Oh, but... wait...

We do. Even though there are "rules" and "consequences", people still rob, murder, rape, and pillage-- in point of fact, the very people who are allegedly supposed to enforce the "rules" are the very same ones who consistently break them. The fact of the matter is that people will, as a rule, trend towards compassion and cooperation-- undoubtedly, there will always be anti-social elements to ANY society, but pretending as if having an entrenched, top-down institution is any way going to mitigate those problems is a flight into fantasy.

"This is an imperfect world and the object should be to find ways to make it better - ways that will work. Just because someone writes a book saying people will all follow the rules without being coerced by threat of force doesn't make the premise true, and it runs contrary to human experience. "

Which human experience is that? Please, regal me with your rigorously researched and meticulously defined understanding of the breadth of human experience.

"The evidence that anarchy won't work is all around us. The lack of sufficient, ENFORCED regulation is what made the 1% what they are today."

This is comical, to say the least. Not only do you equivocate a society that is premised around anti-authority with the existing authoritarian society (ceteris paribus doesn't apply here) for your evidence that "anarchy won't work", but your further reasoning is at complete odds with history. I mean, for fucks sake, have you ever read Kolko? Williamson? Or any of the New Left historians who explicitly pointed out that regulations are a tool to keep working class cooperatives and production collectives from being a functioning form of organization?

I strongly recommend you reconsider your unwillingness to actually review the general anarchist material, because you're only sabotaging your own capacity for a broader understanding of what you're decrying.

[-] 0 points by BlueRose (1437) 10 years ago

Anarchy works great for the 1%, sucks for the rest of us.

[-] 0 points by CrowPotkin (22) from Holbrook, NY 10 years ago

Spoken by a person with virtually no understanding of anarchism.

[-] 1 points by BlueRose (1437) 10 years ago

PROVE I don't know what I'm talking about.

[-] 0 points by CrowPotkin (22) from Holbrook, NY 10 years ago

Yawn Burden of proof doesn't exist for those of us taking a negative position, friend. Show me you know what anarchism is, and then we can make some headway.

[-] 0 points by wbhyatt (73) 10 years ago

Anarchism means "without rulers." All people are morally responsible to live out their rights and respect the rights of others in a system like this. It can be done with the right type of people and the right type of education. Take away capitalism and take away the state, and you have anarchy

[-] 0 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 10 years ago

I think you are misinterpreting what anarchism is all about, It is not about an absence of government, It is about an absence of the state, which is not coterminous with government, Many institutions which are not the state have governments such as labor unions and voluntary institutions and many anarchists are happy to run for office in such institutions, The state is another matter,

What exactly is the state? Well, to most anarchists it is the coersive apparatus of government which would include those institutions in society which have a sanctioned monopoly on violence such as the police and the military as well as those institutions which are charged with, as Noam Chomsky put it, "manufacturing consent" such as teaching, social work and advertising, The basic role of these institutions is to preserve the power and class rule of the ruling class,

Anarchy is not about the absence of law, It is about the absence of coersion, Anarchism is not necessarily about direct democracy and in fact it could be argued that even in a classless society mediating institutions might be necessary especially to prevent manipulation by ego driven individuals,

[-] 0 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

Thank you for such a well expressed explanation regarding your interpretation of the nature of anarchy.

It seems to me that you are making a distinction between voluntary and coercive cooperation. In a labor union, if someone breaks the rules you can just throw him out of the union. In society if someone breaks the rules, by killing someone for example, can we just throw him out of society? Where is he going to go? Without institutions having the power to protect our rights through coercive force we are all left to defend for ourselves. No police, no prisons, just bad guys doing what they please till some citizen risks his life to take the bad guy out, then the bad guy's friends take out the good citizen.

I agree with what appears to be your intent, but without coercion by the state, we're screwed. So the object must be to create a government which is controlled by good citizens rather than bad guys. It should be a state which maximizes freedoms and opportunities so all the goals of what you consider to be anarchy can be realized, without leaving the less fortunate devoid of any chance for success, or average people the victim of bad guys.

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 10 years ago

Well, in pre-state societies, which existed before the human foot print was so pervasive on the planet, when somebody committed an antisocial act the normal punishment was exile, The most extensive direct knowledge we have of this from Native American culture up until the mid 19th century though there are other examples such as the South Pacific, Australia, South America, Africa and the ancient Middle East,

In terms of contemporary society we are learning more and more all the time about how to deal with antisocial elements in noncoersive ways, At Zuccotti there was no OWS security, what there was was what was called a de-escalation team which was conceptualized very differently than security as it was noncoersive, I saw with my own eyes how they were able to break up fights and potential fights several times, In one instance a fight was started by someone with mental illness who was clearly decompensating, The de-escalation team broke up the fight and in the process the guy said he didn't want to go to the hospital, At that point the police tried to intervene and the de-escalation team surrounded him and tried, nonviolently but without success to prevent the cops from hauling him off, All this of course is very new put it points to very exciting possibilities, There is also the idea of restorative justice about which a fairly sizable body of literature has already developed,

There were a lot of people who gravitated to Zuccotti Park who the average middle class person would characterize as "bad guys." There were the chronically homeless who, because of their experience tend to see life as a war of each against all, There were people with mental illness, There were felons just out of jail and there were junkies, These, of course were not a majority of occupiers, but they were drawn to the occupation because of the promise of free food and also because compared to what they were used, it was a really safe environment, It was exactly among these people that antisocial behavior continued to exist, People do not change overnight, though the amount that they did change was remarkable and when issues arose the de-escalation team was there to sort things out, Of course it will take years, perhaps decades to really develop a comprehensive body of practice around these issues, but then the kinds of changes we are looking for will also take that long,

If you spend just one full day at an occupation it will become chrystal clear to you (or at least it does to most people) that the coersive power of the state has absolutely nothing at all to do with protecting the general public from "bad guys." What it is about is protecting the 1% from the rest of us and as far as the 1% is concerned we are all bad guys,

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

We have the same goal I think, to live in a world of peace, freedom and prosperity. I don't want to be coerced into any activity I do not choose to be a part of, and that includes the activities of antisocial people as well as government. But I understand that antisocial people can form escalation teams in the same way that the de-escalation team was formed. Without the rule of law every citizen becomes responsible for self protection, and we can't protect our families when we aren't with them. It would not be a peaceful way to live.

I don't think society can survive without police, but we need new laws that result in the police serving the people rather than the 1%. That can only occur if the people have the power to create the laws and change them at any time. I believe that can be accomplished through an "informed democracy" where only those who can demonstrate knowledge of an issue can vote on it, which eliminates the problem of mob rule -- which, BTW, would run rampant in an anarchistic society.

[-] 0 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 10 years ago

Anarchism does not presuppose the absence of law, It presupposes the absence of coersion and there is a vast difference, All kinds of voluntary stateless bodies have constitutions, by laws and laws, but no real means of coersion, Sometimes voluntary bodies impose fines for the violation of their rules, but they have no real means of enforcing such an imposition, The next step would be expulsion from the body which often happens,

I think there are many examples of the rule of law in the absence of coersion, though not, in the modern era at the level of the nation (I can't say nation state because here we are presuming the absence of a state),

One of the most cited revolutionary examples is the Paris Commune of 1871. Some people point to the first few months of the Russian Revolution, before the civil war and the ban on parties, There are again of course countless examples of voluntary organizations with fairly strict rules functioning with states but which don't themselves have any powers of coersion except to expell people,

You keep referring to "bad people." Even penologists and prison guards I know admit that 75% of the prison population is there for violation of drug laws and they wouldn't be there if we had rational and humane drug laws, Then you get to small time economic crimes: burglers, thieves, people who rob convenience stores or even banks and perhaps people in prison for being ancillary to such events or because such an event led to injury, I am in no way excusing this, but I do think you would learn a lot if you looked into the concept of restorative justice, If we had a more rational and humane economic system that provided these people with an alternative path early on, penologists and prison guards I have talked to acknowledge that this population could at least be cut in half, which brings us down to about 12% of the present prison population, Penologists and some prison guards further acknowledge that about half the rest of the prison population would be better served by mental health professionals than in prison, That brings us down to 6% of the present prison population, What do we do with them? Have there always been genuinely antisocial elements in every society? Probably, As we have seen pre state societies and even some states deal with them by putting them into exile (Australia started as a British penal colony), Of course the human foot print in now too big for that, but we also have several hundred years of behavioral science development and I am not talking about emptying the prisons tomorrow (though we could start), It may take decades or even several lifetimes to figure out how to deal rationally, humanely and democratically with genuinely antisocial elements, but the fact is, excepting for the 1%, when you clear away all the dross genuinely antisocial elements amount to a tiny tiny proportion of our society, Indeed the overarching point that I am trying to here is that the most antisocial element in our society are the 1%, Should they all be put in prison? I truly don't have an answer to that, but the fact is those white collar criminals who are in prison are not treated any where near as rudely or inhumanely as are blue color criminals, This is typically because their crimes are considered nonviolent, which is more or less the same as ignoring the fact that corporations typically socialize loss while privatizing profit, For example, many people would think it absurd that a corporation should have to pay the full price for the polution that their manufacturing causes, We tend to see that as a cost that society as a whole should automatically pay even though society as a whole had nothing to do with its cause,

I am not an anarchist, but I am very influenced by anarchist thought and I know a little bit about it, Actually, the main difference between Marxists and anarchists is exactly what you state above, Marxists believe that their needs to be a transitional period between that of the bourgeois state and a stateless society. During that period the !% will not have disappeared but they will no longer rule and a transitional state (according to this theory) is necessary essentially to police the 1% until they have disappeared as a social class, However, this theory does not account for that trivial number of truly antisocial elements that you seem so overwrought about, Personally, I think that is nuts and just demonstrates how well the propaganda of he 1% is working, The average person has an infinitely better chance of dying of a heart attack, or cancer, or being hit by a car, or even dying in an airplane crash than they do of getting mugged or burglerized, yet considerably less attention is spent on cures for cancer or heart disease or highway safety than on the prison industrial complex,

Regarding decision making under anarchism, I tend to agree with you and it is one of the main reasons that I am not an anarchist, not because I am affraid of bad guys in the absence of cops (in nearly 50 years of activism some of the baddest guys I've ever met have been cops--the only difference is that they have a legally sanctioned right to be gun slingers and the other guys don't or as Woody Guthrie said, some men rob you with a six gun and some with a fountain pen).

But I do think that individuals can be easily manipulated even in the most democratic society or organization imaginable which is why I am for mediating institutions (often called political parties) which stand between the individual and the government, History is replete with examples of how the abolution of such mediating institutions led directly to totalitarianism beginning with the abolition of all corporate feudal associations during the French Revolution, Here I clearly differ with Madison who argued against factions in the Federalist Papers, I think factions are a good thing and one of the hallmarks of a genuinely democratic culture,

[-] 0 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

You said - "Anarchism does not presuppose the absence of law, It presupposes the absence of coersion and there is a vast difference."

The absence of the ability to enforce a law is the absence of law, and that is the very definition of anarchy. What you describe is a voluntary system of rules with no way to enforce them. It is true that without the power to enforce a law you have anarchy, along with the resulting injustice it brings. The one-percent are examples of what happens without sufficient power to regulate what people do to other people. If we take away even the tiny amount of power government now has to affect those people the injustice would become even worse. 1% of the 1% would run everything and we'd all be living in cardboard boxes. Even more of us would be robing convenience stores to feed our families.

I agree with what you said about prison populations. Our present system creates criminals out of people who wouldn't be there if there were freedom and justice in society. But the problem isn't government, it is unjust government. No government (anarchy) is the system we have now on steroids.

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 10 years ago

Voluntary associations enforce their laws by exclusion from the organization, We have a long way to go but there are many ways that a post state society could enforce its rules short of violence, That would include the notion of restorative justice and de-escalation about which there is already a substantial body of literature and practice but about which we still have a lot to learn and also a lot of time to learn as we are a long way from a noncoersive society as the experience of the occupy movement discovers every day in its encounters with those forces of the state of the 1% that have a sanctioned monopoly on violence, whose primary purpose in life is not to protect us from the bad guys, since there employers are the baddest guys that ever lived, but to protect the bad guys from us,

Fuck the 1% and their cops and army, Fuck the state, Solidarity forever,

[-] 0 points by metapolitik (1110) 10 years ago

People talk a lot about "Freedom"...

But freedom to do what exactly?

Own stuff?

For really poor people, "economic freedom" is meaningless. For them, it's just freedom to starve.

For all you right-wingers, tea-partiers and libertarians out there who whine constantly about taxes and "punishing job-creators" (yeah right), be thankful that the government is keeping the poor well enough fed that they don't decide to storm your gated communities.

To all of you protesters that consider yourselves "Anarchists", please remember: Big Business LOVES anarchy because it means that there are no safeguards in-place to keep corporations and banks from riding roughshod over everyone else.

Governments proper role is to protect the people and to regulate economic interests. Not protect economic interests and regulate the people - which is what's now happening.

So No...

No, The only way for 'Anarchy' to work is to also do away with banks, corporations and all forms of currency. While such an idealized state might actually be stable and sustainable, I don't see how we could realistically get from here to there.



[-] 0 points by REALamerican (241) 10 years ago

in a word...... fuck no.

[-] 0 points by GOP99PERCENY (6) 10 years ago

You know the occupy movement is either extremley hypocritcal, or about the most motley group of people looking for ahandout and say they are al for the smae thing. If you don't know many conservatives are all for smaller government but many of yall disagree with them because i mean they are afterall conservatives, but then you go and support anarchy? but want more regulation and bigger government at the same time? what is that? I which one do yall wnt Anarchy or Bigger government?

[-] 0 points by jjuussttmmee (607) 10 years ago

what is the difference between mob rule and direct democracy?

[-] 2 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

Without requiring people to understand the pros and cons about they are voting on, there is no difference. An "informed democracy" is a form of direct democracy where people are required to demonstrate they understand the issues before they can vote, with the answers on the voting form if necessary. The intent is to prevent mob rule while at the same time making it possible for everyone to have an equal say in the laws which govern them.

[-] 0 points by jjuussttmmee (607) 10 years ago

how to prevent mob rule? please explain how popular vote is different than mob rule? only informed voters should be allowed to vote but how to keep that fair? lets not educate this class of people so they can not vote.

[-] 0 points by wbhyatt (73) 10 years ago

Anarchism is a legitimate left wing movement made up of Socialists who believe that there should be no government. It is Anti-capitalist and supports the nation of voluntary organization along democratic, non-hierarchical lines. It defines freedom and equality. If you think Anarchy is total chaos of "Freedom to do anything you want" than you do not know what it is as a social phenomenon.

[-] 2 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

I did a google search to find a definition for anarchy, and here is what came up.

an·ar·chy/ˈanərkē/ Noun:

  1. A state of disorder due to absence or nonrecognition of authority.
  2. Absence of government and absolute freedom of the individual, regarded as a political ideal.

What you describe above is NOT anarchy.

[-] 1 points by wbhyatt (73) 10 years ago

you realize that the dictionary definition doesn't describe it as a POLITICAL PHENOMENON. i'm tired of people who aren't anarchists labeling anarchism when they don't know what it is. And the second definition is EXACTLY what i just described. n00000b

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

The second definition leads to the first. The problem with people who call themselves anarchists while at the same time insisting people will follow rules is that they are not anarchists. Absolute freedom means screw the rules -- and that leads straight to chaos and disorder.

[-] 1 points by wbhyatt (73) 10 years ago

not if you respect the rights of others. then, Anarchism means something totally different than what you described. don't blame the system, blame the people who operate within the boundaries of the system

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

In a fully enlightened society there would be no need for rules, or money. There would be no crime and no one would be selfish or greedy or envious. Everyone would be completely honest and cheerful and help everyone else. There would be no homelessness or starvation or war or pollution. It would be heaven. It would be dream-like . . . no wait, it would be a dream because that situation is NEVER going to exist on this planet.

But let's say that it did exist. There could be entirely just laws and the power to enforce them would exist, yet because everyone is so happy no one ever breaks the laws. It wouldn't matter if laws were in place.

So why can't we accept having just laws and the power to enforce them until we don't need them any longer?

[-] 0 points by NLake72 (510) 10 years ago

It's a void. Something will fill the void. We have something pretty good, it's called the Constitution of the United States, and the Bill of Rights. We can reform the system we have, but anarchy? Sorry, but that leaves a void, and that creates all kinds of room for the tyrannical personality type to take over. People need a certain amount of law and order, human nature almost dictates it. Anarchy... Man, this movement is being killed by people who refuse to let themselves be organized. Anarchy leaves too much up to chance, and it creates a void that makes me... suspicious as hell.

Direct Democracy is a great idea, but it's not a smart one. Think of all the people who watch the news and think they're getting enough information to carry the truth away. People just don't read, and, not many people that I know really spend several hours per day reading the news, and watching educational programs. They aren't truly critical thinkers, they don't pursue a wide variety of news sources. They don't force themselves to watch stuff that they don't agree with, just to see what it really has to say. Direct Democracy demands too much of the common man, who wants to watch reality shows, or the sports, or has kids, or a company, or who is otherwise too distracted to be bothered with self-governance. And, do you really think that electronic voting is safer than ballot voting? It's a nice thought, but humanity on this scale can't get the job done properly. If we were a colony on the moon, with, maybe a couple thousand people? Well, then it would be worthy of some real debate... But, people just aren't up to the task of governing themselves in a complicated world. Simple solutions to complicated problems are a fool's paradise. I shudder at the thought of having to live in that kind of world.

[-] 2 points by hidden (430) from Los Angeles, CA 10 years ago

Democracy demands too much of the common man, who wants to watch reality shows, or the sports, or has kids, or a company, or who is otherwise too distracted to be bothered with self-governance.

Not really. These people will just watch their reality show or sport or whatever. They don't need to be restricted from voting, they just won't bother voting, they know that there are a lot of people that know better. And for those who decided to vote, they should vote not on the proposal it self, but on comments in support of the proposal or critique in opposition so the most relevant of it would float up and people could make the most informed decision.

But requiring people to pass a test is imho unethical and they will cheat on it just for the hell of it.

[-] 1 points by NLake72 (510) 10 years ago

I'm not a huge fan of the idea of testing, either. But, I just don't think most people want to spend a lot of time really exploring both sides of an issue to find where the truth really lies. They have politicians to do their hard thinking for them... If I had four kids, I wouldn't have the time or mental energy to really devote to the task of self-governance... I'd be a knee-jerk liberal, because I just wouldn't have the hours in the day to seriously ponder politics. People just don't really want to be THAT bothered, is my point.

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

What I am talking about is an "informed democracy" where individuals must demonstrate knowledge of any issue they vote upon, with elected managers doing the day to day work. I think that could succeed, as only those willing to inform themselves would be able to vote on a particular issue. But otherwise I have to agree with you -- a person can be smart, but people as a whole can be selfish idiots.

[-] 1 points by NLake72 (510) 10 years ago

You know, I've often thought about a voter's license. I have no idea how it would work, but it seems like an idea that's at least kicking around, and, probably shooting down. But yeah... let's say, just for laughs, you had to pass a 20 question multiple choice test to vote on a certain issue... Like, who's who, what do they represent, what are they actually suggesting, what will the legislation seek to accomplish, what doesn't it address... This seems like something worth thinking about. Of course, smarter people than me have shot this idea down before, but, it seems like the only feasible way to ensure we have properly informed voters actually performing their civic duty BEFORE they enter the voting booth. I dunno, it's gotta be a dumb idea, but it's... some kind of idea... :) So... I'm willing to debate, and admit I'm wrong on this idea, but it's a starting place for a decent debate (not tonight, going offline now.)

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

That's exactly what I am proposing here. A system of "informed democracy" where absolutely anyone, of any age, can vote on any issue, if they can first demonstrate that they understand what they are voting for or against. The qualification requirement, in the form of a simple test, must not be so complex average people are prevented from voting by becoming overwhelmed, and it wouldn't hurt, I think, if the answers to the questions appear on the same form used to cast the vote. Voters simply need to know what the answers are.

[-] 1 points by NLake72 (510) 10 years ago

Well, I've taught every grade of child, and I know that multiple choice tests don't equate with anything close to a thorough understanding of material. Part of that is the quality of the test, part of it is the type of student you have (some kids just need to know the answer, they don't need to think about the bigger picture.) Still, it's a possibility I'm willing to consider. It demands prep work before you can vote, it demands active engagement in the democratic process, or you risk losing your chance to take part. It's a thought, anyway. I'm not full-bore on the concept, but it's my starting point for this conversation.

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

I completely agree with what you pointed out above. I think it helps to understand that government run by an "informed democracy" would essentially be what we have now (though representatives would be called managers because no one can represent everyone) -- with the exception that the people can step in at any time to exercise control. Thanks for your comments :)

[-] 1 points by NLake72 (510) 10 years ago

Yep, I think you're definitely on a path worth considering. I get the willies when people start saying we need any representatives-- we can do it all ourselves. There's a happy medium, and I think this is worthy of consideration. So, I'm learning here, that's the point of debating, and self-educating. Let me ponder this a bit, more before I hop on board, but... Yeah, more input from the people, fo' shizzle.

[-] 0 points by vothmr (82) from Harrisonburg, VA 10 years ago

if we had direct democracy, we would still have slavery. direct democracy=mob rule=FAIL

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

Again, I am suggesting an "informed democracy" where people must demonstrate comprehension of a particular issue in order to vote on it. Otherwise you are correct -- mob rule means failure.

[-] 1 points by vothmr (82) from Harrisonburg, VA 10 years ago

that is exclusionary, how do you think jim crow laws worked?

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

The only people who would be excluded are those who don't know what they are voting on. Jim Crow laws prohibited blacks from voting by requiring them to answer questions having nothing to do with what they were voting on. Answers to questions could be provided on the voting form itself, and the material could be presented in audio form for those who can't read. This is a very different system I am proposing.

[-] 1 points by vothmr (82) from Harrisonburg, VA 10 years ago

that's definitely the Jim crow laws. who decides the questions? what constitutes knowledge about the issue. the instant you start saying that only certain people can vote on certain things then you remove the element of choice. is someones opinion who is not educated suddenly not valid? i don't know much about abortion so is my opinion on it any less important than someone who studies it? should i have no say in climate change because i don't think it exists? you can't exclude people based on knowledge. because all questions are biased to some degree and the person who doesn't know who their representative is still has an opinion. you can't force legislation people who didn't have a voice because of some questionnaire. that my friend is EXACTLY what Jim crow laws tried to do and that's exactly what they did.


[-] 0 points by buik2 (66) 10 years ago

depends on what you mean by work... would your punk ass get killed? more than likely. would i have a small army of henchmen? probably

[-] 1 points by RobPenn (116) 10 years ago

So what's the difference, for you and your henchmen, between an anarchy and a military state?

Except that in Anarchy, you get a bunch of little military states duking it out for what they want or need?

[-] 0 points by hidden (430) from Los Angeles, CA 10 years ago

no one to protect the weak from the strong

What about their peers/community/friends? We have to move part the individualistic mentality forced upon us by capitalism.

Those with power will use it to gain more power

Without power structures, there wouldn't be those with power.

Trough, I would settle for now with "Direct Democracy" until mentality of the majority transition to cooperation mode :)

[-] 0 points by RobPenn (116) 10 years ago

There's always a power structure. Power is implicit in much of human interaction. As long as you're bartering for a good or service that some one else can provide, you're working in a power structure. And as long as there are limited supplies, there will always be a power structure that determines to whom those supplies are given.

In the end, Anarchy is exactly the same power struggle as any system of government, only without rules.

"Cooperation mode" isn't a matter of changing the mentality of the public; it's a matter of evolution.

[-] 0 points by hidden (430) from Los Angeles, CA 10 years ago

Power structure while bartering can only be created if someone take possession of essential resource. If to elimination the concept of property which is fake anyway and share the resources and goods there wouldn't be need for bartering. Resource management could be automated and considered as a part of the environment to be improved protected by volunteers. It's like an abstraction layer from the dictatorship if nature.

"matter of evolution" - sure, trough evolution is a non-stop process and is happening right now. I see more and more people favoring cooperation no matter how much media is trying to set us up against each other. The OWS is a good example of it, how all the different movement coming together. It's spreading like a wild fire since open source free software started. Now, open source hardware is coming up. And I'm expecting very soon to see self-replicating open source robotics.

I'm sure this trend is not gonna stop and soon it all will happen, my only concern and the primary reason to have direct democracy is to keep us from ww3, corporations from legally robbing us and create the best conditions for cooperation to facilitate the evolution.

[-] 0 points by RobPenn (116) 10 years ago

I suppose it could be accepted that this is the evolution of society, but I'm not really following you with the property thing.

How is the idea of private property fake? How can resource distribution be automated, and how would resource distribution happen at all without creating a bourgeoisie, either among the people or in the government?

My whole world of political theory is VERY small, and I'm really way out of my depth in discussions like this. Spell it out like you would to some one who doesn't know anything at all about it.

[-] 0 points by hidden (430) from Los Angeles, CA 10 years ago

The only private property that any of us can claim is our body and I'm even not sure if it is. You see, everything, the sun, the earth, water, air, plants, animals, minerals are not our property. So, in order to acquire property, somebody supposed to own it in the first place to sell or trade it.

A hypothetical example: Would it be all right if I own the earth? Would it be all right if 0.1%(7M people) own the earth? What if they have enough money to purchase it? What about half the earth? Maybe quarter the earth? What is the minimum fraction of the earth would be all right to own?

When you thinking about these questions, you can see how the idea of private property is falling a part.

Everything around us is to be shared. And we are not to compete and fight, cooperate and socialize. We, like overwhelming majority are social creatures, we just been mislead by the market system into the individualism we are in. The more people isolate themselves, the more psychological problems they get.

The market system is in it's nature a power structure which allows the ruler to force people to labor. In feudalism/dictatorship the minority ruling the majority. In representative democracy we just chose a master to rule us. In direct democracy, the majority ruling the minority. But, do we really need to be ruled now when we can have all our need met by automation with minimum or no human labor?

Let's say, you created a machine that takes raw material and create another machine by digital schematic including itself. It would make sense to share it so everybody could create whatever they need, create new schematics and share it with everybody and it would go viral. But does it make sense in market economy? Even trough you get all the new products, you can't trade them so it makes sense to hoard it and sell the products that you designed yourself and that's where the greed is getting born.

In the system, which btw called resource-based economy, if you have an idea how to extract, process or prepare a specific resource, you just voluntarily design an open source blueprint at near by research center at which it will be produced and put into use. You do not have to own it or own the place where it's applied or even it's products. You just do it because it feels good to create, to challenge your skills, to contribute to the society, to work on it and socialize with all the like minded people in that research center. Most of the time, only one of these Intrinsic motivators is enough. But in the market economy, these natural incentives are destroyed because we are not contributing to the society, we are pursuing our own self-interests and we are not cooperating with people, we ether control them or being controlled by them. And most of the time, we are not designing what we want to, but what we tolled to.

I deliberately weren't telling you what system I'm talking about to not throw a mining-less name that can just be ignored, but to engage in the intellectual discussion which is far more constructive for both of us. The name or implementation does not matter, the idea is what matters.

[-] 0 points by darrenlobo (204) 10 years ago

You need to study up on anarchist theory. Law has & can be provided privately. Anyway, with all the govt we have we still don't have the rule of law. The present system is nothing but might makes right.

The Idea of a Private Law Society http://mises.org/daily/2265

[-] -1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

Private laws require acceptance of those laws by individuals. Anarchy, by its very nature, is lawless. What you are describing is not anarchy. If you are talking about groups creating their own laws, those laws will certainly conflict with other groups, which is a sure way to create conflict.

[-] 0 points by darrenlobo (204) 10 years ago

Anarchy is the absence of authority it is not chaos. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarchy This will result in less conflict not more. Govt thrives on conflict & actively creates it. Private groups want peace & order. Among private groups disputes can be resolved by using a neutral 3rd party. Lex mercatoria of the middle ages is a great example of how this has & can work. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lex_mercatoria

[-] 0 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

I appreciate that you are attempting to define a situation where nice people all get along without government telling us what to do. But the absence of authority means the absence of resources devoted to protecting an individual's rights. Say someone doesn't like what you said about anarchy and decides to bash you with a shovel. While government (authority) can not prevent that from happening, they can bring huge resources to bear remove someone so unfair from society for a while so such behavior is less likely to occur in the future. Without authority, all it takes are a few jerks to make everyone else have to act like jerks to protect their own rights. Anarchy leads to chaos. There is no way around this outcome.

[-] 0 points by darrenlobo (204) 10 years ago

I can only repeat that you need to brush up on anarchist theory. I can't explain it all in a few comments. A good place to start is the link I'm reposting: The Idea of a Private Law Society http://mises.org/daily/2265

Anarchism accounts for bad people, we're not that naive, thank you.

[-] -1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

I read what I could stand to read regarding the info on the link you provided. Right away it stated that if someone gets to some resource first, he becomes the exclusive owner of that resource. Imagine 100 people walking across the desert in search of a better life. There is only one water hole in 100 miles and I am the first to get there, so as an anarchist I claim ownership of all the water and demand all others to do my bidding or they will die of dehydration.

I see this as anarchy resulting in dictatorship. Please tell me how this situation would be resolved according to your views.

[-] 0 points by darrenlobo (204) 10 years ago

& how much of the Earth is desert & how many people want to live in one? You can if anything to death with wacko hypotheticals. There's plenty of history of people using property rights to develop resources & prosper.

Imagine this, people organize govts to protect their rights but the govts are taken over by special interests that abuse the people in many ways. How do you fix that? In the history of govt no one, & I mean no one, has come up with a workable solution.

[-] 0 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

The reason I provided the analogy above is because the same scenario plays out whenever some individual or group claims possession of natural resources. It is a choice between profit for a few or mutual benefits for everyone. If government (everyone) owned natural resources they could be provided to everyone at the least possible cost. Everyone wins, except the people who are prevented from making slaves out of the rest of us who need resources to survive. Greed is a crime against humanity. Freedom is a right, but not the freedom to exploit others who have no alternative but to comply in order to survive. The workable solution is to insure fairness, and that can only be done through government insuring EQUAL rights. That government needs to be one which prevents special interests from exploiting the rest of us, and I think that can best be done with an "informed democracy."

[-] 0 points by darrenlobo (204) 10 years ago

If govt worked so well at protecting freedom & insuring equal rights OWS wouldn't exist. Democracy is a cruel joke, it hasn't helped us. It's time to face the reality that govt doesn't work while freedom has.

I lived in Venezuela where they nationalized the oil industry in '76. It's been downhill for them since. This formula of yours doesn't work.

[-] 0 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

You are talking about current governments. I am talking about an "informed democracy" where the people can get together to change any government policy at any time, which has never existed. If the people had a means, right now, of voting to remove money from politics, that would happen immediately, and much of the corruption in government would go away instantly.

What we have now is a system where the rich and powerful are allowed to do almost anything they please, which is very close to what would happen with anarchy, though with anarchy there would be no restrictions at all on what those in power can get away with. Big money has the power because they own the government, and with no government they would simply do what they do now without the "annoyance" of government getting in their way.

[-] 1 points by darrenlobo (204) 10 years ago

You're defeating your own argument when you acknowledge that current govts are corrupt & informed democracy has never existed. You don't seem to understand that it is through govt that the 1% are enabled, it isn't an annoyance to them. Without govt they wouldn't have any power.

[-] 0 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

It is naive to believe that big business would not have power if there were no government. People would die in winter without heat, and how much do you think natural gas companies would charge if they were not regulated? When the demand is constant and the supply is control, the idea of prices being reduced by supply and demand goes out the window. With no government one gas company could simply kill the owners of any competing company and hold us all ransom for whatever price they choose to charge. All items of basic necessity would cost as much as people could possibly pay and there would be no money left for anything else.

Sometimes big business uses government to express their power, but with no government their power would be absolute.

[-] -1 points by thefutureisnow (223) from Newark, NJ 10 years ago

Yes but it has to work through its original theories and practices and cannot be riddled with violent people who commit senseless acts of violence when they do not get want they want , there are many viable valid points made within the original theory of anarchy but they have been twisted and mangled by propaganda and interference of gov,t and other types of agencies to dismantle it , the term is known basically as ,Antidisestablishmentarianism , although i may not be completely correct on the spelling pretty close though , this term is a term and ideology that is hidden from many walks of life the majority of the American population live their whole life and never even hear this term much less actually try to discover what it really means so i invite you to give me a scenario, if you do not already know what this term means , but a clue is it was created to totally throw society off ,

[-] -1 points by ChristopherABrownART5 (46) from Santa Barbara, CA 10 years ago

Article 5 NOW! If the constitution actually supported practicing to find out, would you support the constitution?

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

I have no idea what you are talking about here. Article 5 of the US Constitution states that only congress and state legislatures can propose constitutional amendments. What I would like to see is a means for the people to vote on a constitutional amendment directly.

[-] -1 points by ChristopherABrownART5 (46) from Santa Barbara, CA 10 years ago

Ultimately through article 5 that can happen. It looks like this on the state ballot.

Shall the State of __ ratify a federal constitutional amendment to remove the individual civil rights of corporations nationally?

This happens with those issues that are filled with controversy. The others the delegates can conduct local elections preceding ratification deadlines if those apply.

[-] -1 points by ChristopherABrownART5 (46) from Santa Barbara, CA 10 years ago

ImaDreamer wrote: So the idea of anarchy, total freedom, seems very appealing. END----

It is, but it needs to be close to perfect or it will often resemble chaos. Perfect anarchy is where everyone of it knows everything there is to know about needs.

Direct democracy is good but there must be full media coverage so people have uniform information which is verified to degrees with telephone response capacity so the internet is not needed. Only a TV and a phone. Voice verification works excellent.

Another way that will perhaps provide the best transition is use of article 5 of the constitution, a lawful and peaceful revolution.

Lessig power point on article V http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4gpbfY-atMk

Lots of facts here about Article V. http://algoxy.com/poly/article_v_convention.html

Article V conference, Lawrence Lessig at harvard 9/25/11-other attendee video comments http://vimeo.com/31464745

Our first and last consitutional right.

[-] -1 points by chestRockwell (-4) 10 years ago

Direct democracies don't work thats why the founding fathers made it a republic

[-] 1 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 10 years ago

I can't possibly be informed enough on all topics to decide on all the details personally, no matter what kind of internet setup there is.

We have a republic because you can't do anything with a committee of everybody.

[-] -1 points by HarryPairatestes2 (380) from Barrow, AK 10 years ago

"The closest workable alternative to unlimited freedom is a Direct Democracy where every individual can personally vote on every policy enacted by the government which imposes limits on what individuals are allowed to do."

So you want millions of people voting every day, maybe numerous times a day?

[-] 0 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

I am not saying everyone HAS TO vote on every issue, but that everyone CAN, and the decisions are made by those who vote. We would not elect representatives, but managers, who would run things the way they do in business, with the people creating the laws which govern how the managers do things.

I believe voting should be open to everyone, but those casting votes need to be made aware of what it is they are voting for. They would be presented with information outlining the pros and cons of every item they wish to vote on prior to voting. I would call this an "informed democracy."

[-] 0 points by HarryPairatestes2 (380) from Barrow, AK 10 years ago

You know your proposal would result in the government grinding to a halt in order to discuss the issues so that the millions of voters can be informed before any action is taken.

Would you still have a Supreme Court to review the laws that are voted upon to be sure they are Constitutional?

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

I don't believe a Supreme Court would be necessary to review the constitutionality of laws, but I don't have any current objections to one existing.

Government would not grind to a halt while millions of people discuss an issue. Individuals can propose laws anytime on a website set up for that purpose. Discussions would lead to modifications, and when enough people supported an idea, and the information describing the pros and cons was finalized, the proposal would be presented in an area of the site where the masses are asked to review it. One of the obligations of government would be to insure the information presented is fair and accurate. After a certain amount of time, say two to four weeks, the people would be asked to vote on the proposal. Things would probably work at least as fast as they do with our current government.

[-] 0 points by HarryPairatestes2 (380) from Barrow, AK 10 years ago

"I don't believe a Supreme Court would be necessary to review the constitutionality of laws"

Then who would? Please don't say the people.

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

It would seem ya got me on that one :) Somebody would have to ensure laws were constitutional, so a supreme court would serve that purpose, but the people should have a means, perhaps a quite stringent one, of reversing the decisions of any court. The Supreme Court recently made it possible for corporations to spend unlimited amounts of money to get their favored politicians elected, which amounts to legalizing bribery. Things like that need to be prevented.

[-] 0 points by HarryPairatestes2 (380) from Barrow, AK 10 years ago

There are means to reverse Supreme Court rulings. Congress enacts a law specifically addressing the holding of the court. Congress can create a law making corporations not able to contribute to political elections or politicians. Will it happen? Doubt it.

[-] 1 points by ImaDreamer (82) 10 years ago

That's why the people need a means to directly overturn Supreme Court decisions.

[-] -3 points by fandango (241) 10 years ago

there is no freedom with anarchy. There will alwys be a hierachy. They will rule you.