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Talk:Anarcho-capitalism/Archive 14
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	This page is an archive of past discussions. Do not edit the contents
of this page. If you wish to start a new discussion or revive an old
one, please do so on the current talk page.


This archive page covers approximately the dates between Sep 05 and Nov 05.

Post replies to the main talk page, copying the section you are
replying to if necessary. (See Wikipedia:How to archive a talk page.)

Please add new archivals to Talk:Anarcho-capitalism/Archive 15. Thank
you. --Saswann 15:21, 2 February 2006 (UTC)[reply]

    1 Renaming this article
    2 Anarcho-socialism vs. Capitalism chart
    3 FYI - Notes in the article
    4 Images
    5 "not technically anarchism"
    6 von Hayek
    7 Questioning a Premise
    8 Violence
    9 Doh
    10 objectivism
    11 Anarchism / Murray Rothbard
    12 Expand on related articles, spec. Frank Chodorov
    13 try" Stateless Fascism"
    14 Removed critiques
    15 I can't believe this is a real topic
    16 New Age Mumbo Jumbo
    17 individualist anarchism as a term for anarcho-capitalism
    18 Anarcho-capitalist Gangland? (and more possible ancap areas)
    19 Walter Block
    20 Somalia POV
    21 Somalia
    22 Revkat deleting source
    24 Self-ownership not all that central
    25 Non-Aggression Axiom--Proposed Clarification

Renaming this article

What a lot of B.S., this article. Typical wikipedia platitudes.

It would be more accurate to call this article No State Capitalism.
Thats exactly what it is. Why use the disputed "anarcho-capitalism"?
Cews 21:24, 16 January 2006 (UTC)

    Because that's what virtually all pro-capitalism anarchists call
it, since Murray Rothbard coined the term in the 1960's. Get a clue:
There are more google hits for anarcho-capitalism than

        Why the ad hominem, telling me to get a clue? What i said had
nothing to do with anarcho-syndicalism.Cews 00:38, 18 January 2006

Anarcho-capitalism, by many meanings, of either of its derivitives, is
an oxy-moron. Not to say all of its meanings.Cews 00:38, 18 January
2006 (UTC)

    This is discussed in the article under "Terminological
criticisms...". The fact is, anarcho-capitalists define capitalism
differently - generally as a free market combined with private
property, neither of which *necessarily* contradict anarchism
generally (except under certain very narrow definitions of "anarchism"
which many anarchists hold). The fact that this keeps getting
belabored repeatedly is frankly rather tiring.

    The term anarcho-capitalism is used because that is the primary
title used to describe this particular system of political beliefs
over the last forty-some years, whether you agree with the word or not
- it was not just made up out of thin air by someone on wikipedia. I
find Military Intelligence to be oxymoronic under certain definitions
as well, but I wouldn't propose a rename - that would just be a waste
of everyone's time. --Academician 09:28, 19 January 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Anarcho-socialism vs. Capitalism chart

Wouldn't it make more sense if "anarcho-socialism" was changed to
"anarcho-communism"? Then you could put traditional American
individualist anarchists in between, since they were opposed to
communism and capitalism. For instance, Benjamin Tucker called himself
a socialist, but he believed in private property and opposed
anarcho-communism of Kropotkin, etc.RJII 19:27, 18 July 2005

        I put it back since it was rather odd to have the article
refering to a chart that didn't exist. Saswann 12:00, 19 July 2005

            added a few data points Saswann 14:26, 19 July 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                I appreciate that, but Tucker refers to his philosophy
as "anarchistic socialism." So, for the chart to be accurate, that
label should be changed to "anarchist-communism" ..the most pure form
of socialism. RJII 18:38, 19 July 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    Tucker did not believe in private property in the way that most
proponents of full liberal ownership do. Furthermore, the chart is
very flawed. "Totalitarian Fascism" should read "Totalitarian
Capitalism," as long as we're talking about socialism vs. capitalism.
I also would not place the U.S. in the libertarian sphere. It may be
economically liberal, but it certainly is not socially liberal. Just a
few thoughts.--AaronS 18:00, 19 July 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        Tucker did believe in full private property in the produce of
labor --something communist anarchists such Kroptopkin oppose, and
something Tucker ridiculed them for. That makes him distinctly
non-communist, just as he's distinctly non-capitalist for opposing
profit and ownership of raw land. "Anarcho-socialism" is too broad.
Again, it should be changed to "anarcho-communism" since the American
individualist anarchists don't fit in with the communists. RJII 18:35,
19 July 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Did some tweaks reflecting the above comments. Now as to the placement
of U.S. vs Europe on the chart, I was trying to get the Ancap view
into the chart, which I think would place the US as more "libertarian"
than Europe, but I'm open to a counter-argument Saswann 19:40, 19 July
2005 (UTC)[reply]

    Cool, but you forgot to change the title on the side to communism
instead of socialism. Communism is the most extreme form of socialism
so it, naturally, should be at the extreme of the chart. RJII 17:42,
20 July 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        Perhaps, but not all extreme forms of socalism are communist.
Saswann 12:14, 21 July 2005 (UTC)[reply]

            Of course they're not. That's because socialism is a
pretty big spectrum. Anyway, it just occured to me that the chart
should actually have anarcho-communism on one side and
anarcho-capitalism on the other. The more pure the socialism, the
close it gets to anarcho-communism, and the more pure the capitalism,
the closer it gets to anarcho-capitalism. What do you think? RJII
14:15, 21 July 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                I think it wrongly implies that all systems toward the
left would be communist, which I don't think is the case. I don't
think we should imply that, say, Nazi Germany was more "communist"
than Fascist Italy. Then you have the weird case of a "communist"
China that is drifing away from the lower left, toward the lower
right. Saswann 15:37, 21 July 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                    I don't see the problem. Why would it imply that
Nazi Germany is closer to communism than Fascist Italy? And, about
China ..China should probably be in the center (or maybe a little left
of center), since it's a mixed economy. RJII 17:49, 26 July 2005

                        I was just pointing out that "communism" as
the opposite point of the capitalism axis doesn't seem correct since a
centralized "socalist" economy can exist without Marx or communist
ideals (and vice-versa).

                            Yes, but the most extreme form of
socialism is communism. As you move toward the left on the chart,
you're getting more socialist, and the logical limit of socialism is
communism. RJII 18:17, 26 July 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                    Also, that axis should say "More socialist - More
capitalist" instead of "Less capitalist - More capitalist" RJII 17:52,
26 July 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                    can't believe anyone actually follows this
cobblers. Any politically / historically aware person must realise
it's absolute guff! Check recent developments in New Orleans for the

Why the hell is Europe shown as more authoritarian than America on
this chart? I think that could be up to seriou dispute. Secondly, I
dispute the usefulness of the chart, they are far too simplistic. Many
for instance would put fascism as fully authoritarian, but squarely in
between capitalism and communism (because it represents, usually,
rather neo-Keynesian economics). I would scrap the chart altogether
and just explain that Anarcho-capitalism should be strongly contrasted
with authoritarian systems. --CJWilly 19:10, 9 September 2005

        I think the problem you have is you're looking at an
illustration of an AnCap POV. It's not intended to be objective.
Saswann 21:10, 9 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        I fully agree with User:CJWilly about the relative positioning
of Europe and America on the chart. My POV is that the two arrows stay
on the same sides but with the US pointing down towards Fascism and
Europe pointing up towards being more libertarian. However, I would
strongly disagree that Fascism is a hybrid of capitalism and
communism; it is placed in exactly the right position as the most
extreme form of totalitarian capitalism. I'm no economics expert but I
would be surprised if Htler was a neo-Keynesian!

            The arrows aren't the direction the philosophy is "going",
it's just a poor choice of line used to connect the dot to the label.
And like RJII said, it's the ancap view, which would recognize Europe
as being closer to totalitarian. Though I really don't think the
picture is accurate that ancaps deem fascism "pure capitalism",
because they don't. MrVoluntarist 01:30, 10 September 2005

FYI - Notes in the article

RJ mentioned he didn't know how notes were being used in the article,
here's the rundown [1] It's pretty simple. There's a refrence template
{{ref|<name>}} and a note template {{note|<name>}} that link to each
other. The trick is:

    placing the notes in a numbered list that's in the same order as
the citations in the body of the article
    naming all external links ( a link like
[] will throw off the
numbering, [
Footnotes] is ok.

Saswann 12:52, 8 August 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    Thanks. I hadn't been able to figure out how that worked. RJII
17:26, 9 August 2005 (UTC)[reply]


How would people feel if I deleted the postage stamp, moved the
Libertatis Æquilibritas out of the lead, and moved the Collingwood
painting to the lead? The postage stamp was simply the best PD/free
image of the Althing that I could find, and the Collingwood painting
is obviously much more vivid and interesting to look at. Personally, I
feel that the Libertatis Æquilibritas has zero charisma as an image
for the lead, and contributes needlessly to the impression that
anarcho-capitalism is purely theoretical. I realize that the article
is due to be frontpaged on Sep. 9, and it looks like Raul has already
chosen the Libertatis Æquilibritas as the frontpage image; I see that
as an unrelated issue, and I don't think the Collingwood painting
would iconify as well.--Bcrowell 19:21, 28 August 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    My only objection would be the fact that the painting is a bit
oddly shaped for the lead, and needs to be fairly large to see the
detail. It might overwhelm the lead section. Where it is, it's
balanced by the massive weight of the surrounding article :) BTW, I
like the stamp on my browser it fills a void opposite the TOC that
would otherwise be a vast white space-- perhaps move the Collingwood
picture there? Saswann 12:30, 29 August 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    Can someone add a picture of a reputed Anarcho-Capitalist author
please? --Rakista 01:12, 9 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    Did you mean one currently living? Because Murray Rothbard is
already on the page [2]. MrVoluntarist 01:53, 9 September 2005

Comment upon the image of a critique of potential violence inherent in
anarcho-capitalism. The image contains a scene in which one of the
opposing sides are uniformed agents of government. This scene does not
accuratley represent an inherent flaw in anarcho-capitalism, as there
would be a lack of uniformed agents of government. --Dennis Tessier
Sept 9, 2005

    Can you expand on that a bit? If you're referring to the Althing
picture, I'm not quite sure what you mean. Looking at it, I don't see
anything that clearly shows "opposing sides"; also, although a lot of
people in the picture are wearing blue, there's no obvious reason to
think they're wearing uniforms. - Nat Krause 09:11, 10 September 2005

        I think he means [3] in the Crit section. And, while I agree
that it is flawed in the way described, but it is very difficult to
find PD photos illustrating abstract concepts. This was the best
example of "economic violence" I could find in the commons. I don't
think the flaw is that severe in that it's illustrating the critique
of economic power relationships, and not a critique about
statelessness. Saswann 12:29, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

"not technically anarchism"

I removed this phrase from the intro sentence because the article
itself explains that the definition of anarchism is disputed. In fact,
there's an entire article on the subject. I must also express a
general complaint about the use of the word "technically". There
really must be some technical definition underlying that sort of
claim. Perhaps a law or official policy of some organization - as
opposed to a "most people don't think that counts" kind of definition.
-- Beland 02:50, 9 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]
von Hayek

Please note that von Hayek and the Austrian school is
neoliberal/ordoliberal and while anarcho-capitalists read their
writings their ideology has very little common with the classical
ordoliberalism. Today neoliberal is a bashing word for the ideology of
anarcho-campitalism or neoconservatism. It is simply wrong to call v
Hayek and the austrian school an anarcho-capitalist. - anon

    Fortunately, the article does not say that Hayek was an ancap. A
lot of the current Austrian School is ancap though. - Nat Krause
12:38, 9 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Questioning a Premise

Without challenging the article's presentation of its subject, which
is terrific, please accept one general comment on this school of
thought, which has always seemed to me to suffer from a fundamental
logical flaw. That is, so-called anarcho-capitalism assumes that
property rights exist outside of a legal frame of reference. While it
may be true, as Demsetz argued, that property rights exist to solve
exernalities problems, it does not follow that such rights can, in
practice, exist outside of a means of enforcing them. While two
parties may be able to resolve property allocation issues between them
through contracts or other bilateral arrangements, property rights are
distinguishable from bilateral arrangements in that a party claiming
"property" claims rights against the world and not simply rights with
respect to the obligations of another party. While two parties may be
able efficiently to transact acceptable arrangements between
themselves, one party generally cannot efficiently transact vis-a-vis
all other potential parties. One view is that this transaction-cost
problem is resolved by the system of rules-plus-enforcement which we
call law and government. It thus does not seem possible to accomplish
the "anarcho-capitalist" vision outside of a framework of law and
government, because the vision is fundamentally premised on the
concept of property rights. Paradoxically, the anarcho-capitalist
vision eschews the concept of law and government as unnecessary and
even undesirable. To amplify, even if two parties can reach agreeable
terms to allocate resources between them, and even if they can enforce
the agreed-on allocation between each other, how do they ensure that
other parties will respect the arrangement and not plunder? And if one
party's obligation is more dependent on the cooperation of
non-parties, then how does the other party accommodate the risk that
the first party will not be able to perform? Even if solutions to
these problems can be formed on a contract-by-contract basis, what
basis is there for believing that the net result of a patchwork of ad
hoc solutions would be more, rather than less, efficient than law and
government as we know it?

-- Bob (Bob99 14:57, 9 September 2005 (UTC)bob99)[reply]

    Well said, Bob. One reason, among several, why the phrase
"anarcho-capitalism" is a contradiction in terms. But since this entry
seems to be maintained by a majority of proponents of
"anarcho-capitalism", I don't see much hope in it being corrected. --
Etusalikii 18:45, 13 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    The idea is that intitutions that have to answer to market forces
(businesses) tend to be more efficient than government. So, if
consumer demand for protection of private property and individual
liberty (including contracts) eventually increases to a sufficient
level, then businesses (as entities that don't tax) would eventually
outcompete government and serve as better and cheaper protectors of
individuals liberty, and would protect more liberty than any
government can or is willing to protect. Private enterprise would
protect individual liberty and private property from government and
taxation. RJII 18:21, 9 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    I think the key to your misunderstanding is that you confuse
anarcho-capitalism with anomie. You say: "the anarcho-capitalist
vision eschews the concept of law and government as unnecessary and
even undesirable", but this is not true - anarcho-capitalism rejects
the State, but not law. It suggests that general law can arise in a
market without a coercive government creating it. Some like Don
Boudreaux and Russell Roberts suggest that law is "emergent", and is
not necessarily best if created by an on-high authority. This is not
to say that law will be chaotic simply because it is created in a
distributed manner - standards arise in society all the time, without
command from on-high. Market transactions are almost always more
efficient that government solutions, and anarcho-capitalists infer
this to suggest that law will likewise become more efficient due to
the interaction and input from a multitude of subjective market
actors. Admittedly, it is difficult to swallow when one is primarily
used to understanding law as something derived from legislatures - but
that doesn't mean it is an invalid perspective. Writers like David
Friedman in particular make some very compelling arguments.
--Academician 22:15, 9 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        Academician, laws are sets of rules and therefore by
definition universal and exclusive within their space. Laws can't
"compete" like products and services can. You can't have a situation
where several, perhaps contractitory, sets of laws apply to the same
system at the same time (whether that system is social, economic,
physical or mathematical).

        Example: I rape your daughter. You pay a private court, court
X to prosecute me and send me to prison for 5 years. I say "sorry, but
I don't subscribe to court X. Rape of women by men is legal under
court Y's laws (my private court)". To back up my point, I hire a
personal army to protect myself from court X's private policemen
coming to arrest me. -- Etusalikii 19:06, 13 September 2005

            Your law allowing you to rape women would not be
legitimate law according to anarcho-capitalists, since rape would
violate the non-agression axiom and/or the self-ownership principle.
RJII 19:13, 13 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                Ok, another example then to make my point clearer: I
offer your 16-year old daugther cocaine. Whose court decides whether
this is defined as a violation of the above or not? Mine or yours?
                It's all academic anyway, since in absence of a
universal court to enforce them, the non-agression axiom and
self-ownership principle aren't worth the paper they're written on
(see previous example). -- Etusalikii 19:50, 13 September 2005

                    Look, the talk page is not the proper place for
this discussion in any case. If you wish to discuss anarcho-capitalism
the philosophy, rather than anarcho-capitalism the article, then feel
free to post your arguments on the forums[4] and
discuss them with the people who actually refer to themselves as
anarcho-capitalists. If you do so, I will gladly join in the
discussion there. This is not the proper place for this conversation,
however. --Academician 22:32, 13 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                    I'm trying to illustrate that anarcho-capitalism
isn't fully-fledged philosophy, like the article suggests. There are
still incosisencies to be addressed, so I suggest a changing the name.
The wikipedia isn't a place for half-baked ideas. -- Etusalikii 15:56,
14 September 2005 (UTC) -- Etusalikii 15:56, 14 September 2005

                        ? 'anarcho-capitalism isn't fully-fledged
philosophy' ?  ? 'The wikipedia isn't a place for half-baked ideas' ?
                        Please visit Scientology and call me in the
morning. And as far as inconsistencies go, someone should reconcile
Labor theory of value and Intellectual property and explain to
Metallica that Wham engaged in an equal share of labor and they should
both be compensated in equal measure. 16:15, 14 September
2005 (UTC)[reply]

                        Whether you agree with it or not,
anarcho-capitalism is a legitimate philosophy with numerous followers
who use that term. Should the LDS Church article not refer to Mormons
as Christians, merely because some Christians do not consider them to
be so? The anarcho-capitalism article lists numerous criticisms which
you are more than welcome to add further outside sources to. But
Wikipedia:Wikipedia is not a discussion forum, and Wikipedia:Wikipedia
is not a dictionary. Wikipedia has plenty of articles with
descriptions of terms based on how they are used, regardless of
certain parties' beliefs about the legitimacy of that usage.
Anarcho-capitalism is as complete a philosophy as is necessary to term
it a "philosophy", with plenty of published books and articles by many
noted authors who are cited in the footnotes and external links. If
you have a problem with the philosophy, or you personally believe
there are issues that it does not completely addressed, that is fine -
but your opinion in that regard has absolutely nothing to do with the
legitimacy of the anarcho-capitalism article. --Academician 21:14, 14
September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Returning to my original comment, I will forcefully assert that
proponents of so-called anarcho-capitalism have proven my point by
continuing to discuss a putative "market" without providing a theory
of property that permits a "market" to exist independently of a system
of law and government. Proponents of anarcho-capitalism are assuming
that "property" is an indivisible concept and that "property rights"
can exist outside of a system of law and government. No basis is
given, however, for why these assumptions should be accepted. There is
no market without property rights, because a market is an aggregation
of transactions, and a transactions is an exchange that is necessarily
defined in terms of property rights. The argument in favor of
anarcho-capitalism thus assumes the existence of property rights
without providing a theory of property that does not depend on a
system of law and law enforcement. To say that law can exist without
government is nonsense, unless one means "government" in an extremely
formal sense, since whatever mechanism exists to enforce law is
government. While one can imagine various "work-arounds" for
individual acts of government, there is no reason to believe that an
agglomeration of such work-arounds would be more efficient than
government as it is presently understood. In fact, there is every
reason to believe that Western government exists in its present form
as much because the market has demanded it as for any other reason.

-- Bob (Bob99 14:24, 30 September 2005 (UTC)Bob99)[reply]

        Well, anarcho-capitalists certainly do argue that property and
the market exist independently of the state. Whether or not this is a
plausible argument is a matter of opinion. In any event, this talk
page is not a venue for political argumentation. You may wish to take
this up on a politically-oriented message board somewhere. - Nat
Krause 07:03, 1 October 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        All exchange requires is property, not necessarily property
rights. Or are you suggesting that people can not own and exchange
things without government? I am sure that black marketeers like drug
traffickers would find that highly amusing. Anarcho-capitalism, as is
illustrated in the article, suggests a replacement system of private
law to enforce property rights and create a structure for the market
to operate in. If you want a more thorough treatment of the subject, I
suggest you read one of the numerous books cited in the article -
starting probably with The Machinery of Freedom by David Friedman -
then get back to us. Your comments with regard to the article's topic
do not seem useful to me; if you really wish to add criticisms, find a
source and cite it. Edit boldly, if you see a problem with the
article. But be aware that other editors will check your own

            I cannot help but comment on the unintentional humor
implicit in the insistence that a discussion of "anarcho-capitalism"
should be limited to arguing from authority.
            -- Bob (Bob99 14:55, 5 October 2005 (UTC)Bob99)[reply]

                I'm not clear on whether or not you understand what
Wikipedia is here for. It is not a blog on which you can cite your own
opinions, nor is it a discussion forum for you to debate politics.
What we do here is report facts and notable opinions. - Nat Krause
19:29, 5 October 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        And as Nat says, the talk page is not the place to discuss
this subject if you are quibbling with the philosophy - people writing
the article should not necessarily have to be anarcho-capitalists,
after all, and they would not necessarily defend what the article
writes about. I assume, for example, that most of the authors of the
Nazi article are not Nazis, so the talk page of that article would not
be the place to discuss the flaws of Nazism and expect a defense. I
suggest you take your quibbles elsewhere. --Academician 04:46, 4
October 2005 (UTC)[reply]

The point is not a political one but a logical one. A theory of
property is essential to any system based on exchanges of "property."
If property can be demonstrated to be an indivisible, unitary or
elemental concept, then so be it. But that has not been done.
Exchange, as discussed above, requires possession rather than
property. And while possession may be 9/10 of the law, it is the other
1/10 that distinguishes property from possession. If
anarcho-capitalist theory permits a cost-benefit assessment weighing
the cost of obtaining possession through a transaction against the
cost of taking possession unilaterally (such as by force or by
stealthy theft), then the potential for post-contractual opportunism
significantly impedes the realization of value through contractual
exchange. In addition, in a system where possession is 10/10 of the
law, buy-in by those who are themselves capable of taking possession
by force or stealthy theft would be essential to effective
contracting. What is the theoretical explanation for why such buy-in
is more efficient than (or different from) government? If that
question cannot be answered, then it is necessary to present a THEORY
OF PROPERTY in order to support the theory of anarcho-capitalism. I do
not see why that is a political comment.

-- Bob (Bob99Bob99)

    Please either contribute something useful to this article or else
take your arguments someplace else. - Nat Krause 19:29, 5 October 2005

        I still want to know what the anarcho-capitalist theory of
property is. If there isn't one, that information is essential to the
description of the theory in the article.
        -- Bob (Bob99 14:31, 7 October 2005 (UTC)Bob99)[reply]

            Most anarcho-capitalists have a natural law theory of
property which is the same as the classical liberals. That is,
property originally comes into being by the exertion of labor (this is
talked about a bit in the article, concerning Rothbard and original
appropriation). If you build something, it's yours --since you "mixed"
your labor with previously unowned raw materials. On the other hand,
there are anarcho-capitalists who don't believe in natural law, but
rather think it's in the best self-interest of individuals to contract
to regard that product of labor as property (so this amounts to a
subtle difference between the natural law advocates --the end result
is the same: property comes about through labor). RJII 15:11, 7
October 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                Thanks for the explanation. The problem I have with
the substance of it is that it does not explain how one keeps
property, absent a system by which ownership is respected. As a
threshold matter, the legal definition of ownership is typically along
the lines of "the right to exclude others." (There are also levels of
granularity about "the right to exclude others from doing what?" which
may differ from one legal system to another.) My original comment
referred to Demsetz's thesis that property comes into existence to
solve externalities problems. Demzetz used as an illustration the
example (now believed to be apocryphal) of a group of Native Americans
who developed concepts of land ownership in response to experience
with overtrapping of pelt-bearing animals as European demand for fur
increase trapping beyond what was necessary to meet local
requirements. The additional demand gave every individual an incentive
to trap as much as possible, regardless of the long-term consequences
of driving the fur-bearing animals to extinction, because "if I don't,
somebody else will." That is, any action to preserve resources over
the long-term by refraining from overtrapping would involve a negative
externality because the benefit would be conferred on those who, being
less altruistic, simply took advantage of the situation to do more
overtrapping themselves. That happens when the preserver does not have
the right to exclude others. With the innovation of ownership, or the
right to exclude others, the "owner" can profitably preserve the
long-term value of the resource. This is probably the best analysis of
property as a solution to a problem, but it does not necessarily
support an anarchist point of view, though Demsetz certainly preferred
minimalist government. Also, somewhat on point, is Williamson's very
interesting study, "The Economic Institutions of Capitalism," where he
analyzes forms of industrial organization as solutions to various
problems involving minimizing the risk of post-contractual
opportunism. For example, it might be suggested that an assembly line
could be organized as a group of independent contractors buying
components, adding value by combining the components, and selling the
subassembly to the next person on the line. Williamson asked the
question why this does not happen in real life and decided that there
are situations in which common ownership is necessary to reduce
investment-limiting risk. For example, a supplier may be asked to make
a significant sunk investment in a particular customer (i.e., an
investment that cannot easily be recovered by, for example, selling
the relevant capital on a used equipment market). Because the
investment will be sunk, the supplier will be locked into the customer
until the cost of the investment is recouped. If the investment is
significantly large, this recoupment period may be years long. In such
cases, the supplier may hesitate because of the risk that the customer
will seek to renegotiate the terms of the deal after the supplier is
locked in. In some cases, contractual terms are sufficient to overcome
this, but in other cases they are not. When contractual terms are not
available to manage the risk, the supplier may decide not to invest.
In such cases, the customer is likely to choose vertical integration
instead of dealing with a contractor, and Williamson's thesis is that
this kind of risk-management consideration goes a long way towards
explaining the organization of modern industries. I think these same
considerations are relevant to considerations of why property rights
take the forms that they do, as well as of the difficulties that may
be anticipated in attempts to replace government with contract.
                -- Bob (Bob99 22:49, 7 October 2005 (UTC)Bob99)[reply]

                    However, anarcho-capitalism is a system by which
ownership is respected. It is a fallacy to say that libertarian
society is based on contract to the exclusion of property. - Nat
Krause 15:29, 8 October 2005 (UTC)[reply]
                    I'm not sure, but it seems you think that
anarcho-capitalists don't recommend protection of property? That's not
the case. It's just that instead of government protecting property
(government being that which funds itself through taxation), private
institutions would protect property --for example, you pay a monthly
bill to maintain the private police, private courts, private armed
forces, etc. There would be competing protectors of property who
charged for services, rather than taxed. If you don't want to pay,
that's fine, but don't expect anyone to protect you unless it's out of
charity. The article quotes the individualist anarchist, Victor
Yarros: ""Anarchism means no government, but it does not mean no laws
and no coercion. This may seem paradoxical, but the paradox vanishes
when the Anarchist definition of government is kept in view.
Anarchists oppose government, not because they disbelieve in
punishment of crime and resistance to aggression, but because they
disbelieve in compulsory protection. Protection and taxation without
consent is itself invasion; hence Anarchism favors a system of
voluntary taxation and protection." RJII 15:44, 8 October 2005

            By the way, Nat, you seem to be trying to maintain
possession of this page through bullying. I do not appreciate it. With
the notable exception of well-deserved ad hominem comment againgst
yourself, my remarks have been extremely civil. If you don't have the
ability to back up what you have to say with logical argument, don't
embarrass yourself by talking. If you don't like my comment, please
feel empowered not to read them.
            --Bob (Bob99 14:31, 7 October 2005 (UTC)Bob99)[reply]

                What I'm trying to do is make sure that this talk page
gets used for its intended purpose, which is discussing ways to
improve the encyclopedia article, rather than as a general forum for
comment about libertarian theory. The article should have nothing to
do with my personal opinions, so, therefore, my ability to defend them
with logic or not is irrelevant. Anyway, since other editors here seem
to be willing to comment in it, I will give this thread the benefit of
the doubt that it is leading towards something that will eventually
improve the article. As for, "If you don't like my comment, please
feel empowered not to read them"; this, coming from the guy who thinks
I'm bullying him from across the internet! - Nat Krause 15:29, 8
October 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                    I quite agree with Nat and others in this thread.
The purpose of an encyclopedia article is to DESCRIBE the topic. In a
topic describing anarcho-captitalism, which is a commonly used name
for a general category of related political viewpoints, it is
appropriate to describe (a) the principles held in common by those who
call themselves "anarcho-capitalists," (b) the principal divergent
viewpoints still within that ball park, and (c) the most common
criticisms lodged against same by other anarcho-capitalists. The
article is to provide descriptive information, the validity of which
depends only on the correctness of the description, not on the
correctness of that which is being described. LEKulp 02:58, 22
November 2005 (UTC)[reply]


What is to prevent an Anarcho-capitalist society from devolving into
uncontrolled violence, as individuals unconstrained by a common
enforcement power struggle for wealth and influence?--M at rēino 15:50, 9
September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    Nothing --mitrebox 17:21, 9 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]
    The state of affairs where the forces trying to defend against
aggression are stronger than the forces trying to aggress. If consumer
demand is greater for defense of liberty than initiation of coercion,
then defense would have the upper hand. RJII 17:30, 9 September 2005

        Oh I see. So "consumer demand" will "stop the forces". Righty.
So let's say I purchase a discount missile from the recently
privatised nuclear stockpiles and fire it at your city. What are you
going to do? Bundle your citizens' collective "consumer demand for
defense" into a force field? Get real. Talking about misplaced context
... -- Etusalikii 19:29, 13 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

            I would think that an anarcho-capitalist wouldn't contract
with others to allow each other to own nukes, out of self-interest. I
think the reverse would happen --people would contract to refrain from
obtaining nukes, out of their own self-interest. If you didn't
contract as such, you would not receive the services of being
protected from aggression. In that case you would be fair game for any
force that wanted to stop you from obtaining nukes. I think this would
hold for anarcho-capitalists that base their philosophy in egoism and
contract. If an anarcho-capitalist thinks that people have a right to
own nukes under "natural law" that says no one has a right to initiate
coercion against anyone for any reason then I can see that being
problematic. So, you do bring to light something that's lacking in the
article. It's not mentioned that not all anarcho-capitalists believe a
prohibition against initiatory agression exists as natural law. Some
believe that such a prohibition can only exist out of contract. RJII
04:04, 14 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]


Moving ergo no ID (&yes I know I should register) This whole article
had better be displaced by "Anarchocapitalism is complete bollocks",
but unfortunately that is a somewhat argumentative POV

Someone with an understanding of objectivism and anarcho-capitalism,
and how they relate, should take a look at the objectivism section of
this article. It reads to me like someone's propagandizing for Rand
but I don't know enough about either to tell for sure. I've added
links and did some minor editing.

forgot my sig: --Andymussell 20:00, 9 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]
Anarchism / Murray Rothbard

The article on anarchism which has Murray Rothbard as a person notible
in anarcho-capitalism is not mentioned once in this article nor, of
course, is his picture included. If someone knows about the topic
perhaps you can copy some of the material over to this section?
Expand on related articles, spec. Frank Chodorov

Article very interesting, started reading it and noticed there were
are few hotlinked articles that haven't been written. I started a
basic one for Frank Chodorov, so if someone with a better
understanding could fill his article out , plus add any extra
unwritten articles. rakkar 21:44, 9 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]
try" Stateless Fascism"

Use this name, and you have a correctly identified social theory. I
know that anarchism can be mutually exclusive of socialism, but
usually the two are combined in practical anarchist theory. The
anarchist movement does not need this article right now; it's name has
already been defamed by countless post-Katrina headlines. I feel that
wikipedia has been irresponsible in featuring this article. Why
poromote sterotypical ideas of what a social theory is when the main
funtion of this technology is to share information? (Especially when
this website is itself operating in an anarchist manner by allowing
all people to add their perspective and knowledge to the community.)

    Well, Wikipedia is not an experiment in anarchy, so that's not an
aim of the site. If the function of the site is to share information,
why do you want a particular piece of information (that is, combining
statelessness with capitalist free enterprise rather than socialist
collectivism) to be suppressed? *Dan* 00:08, September 10, 2005 (UTC)

        You know, a lot of people can't conceive of socialism or
communism without a government and find them much more exploitative
than capitalism could ever be. If you don't like what the featured
articles are, you can always look at articles as they're being
nominated from the featured article page and vote on whether to give
them featured article status. You can even look into the future to see
featured articles before they get placed on the front page. So if you
had objections, then was the time to voice them. Btw, are you the one
who's been vandalizing the page? If so, please stop. That's really
immature. MrVoluntarist 01:02, 10 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

            What Dan and MrVoluntaryist said. Also, calling
anarcho-capitalism "stateless fascism" is really quite bizarre. Not
only is that an oxymoronic phrase (fascism is all about glorification
of the state - Mussolini, in the article you linked: "For the Fascist,
everything is within the State and... neither individuals nor groups
are outside the State... For Fascism, the State is an absolute, before
which individuals or groups are only relative"), but capitalism is not
fascistic. To an extent, I can understand socialists refferring to
capitalism as "kleptocratic"; even saying it leads to de facto
feudalism is understandable. But "fascist"? Don't you realize how
absolutely ridiculous that is? Even for someone with an admitted bias,
that is beyond the pale. And Wikipedia is not about promoting the
ideals of anarchists (or anarcho-capitalists for that matter) - it is
simply about the distribution of information. I find your advocacy of
the suppression of information to be rather authoritarian, personally.
--Academician 02:03, 10 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Fine then,I'll use the term "neo-fascism"... despite the glorification
of the state involved in fascism, fascism necessitates rule of people
by corporations and other private, capitalist edndeavors. Thus
stateless fascism would be a less organized version of this.
Capitalism and anarchism can never merge. Anarchism is NOT synonymous
with chaos nor does it focus exclusively on autonomy. The author of
this article clearly seems to define it as such. Anarchism is a social
theory. It necessitates collectivism. Capitalism is an alienating
force out of which Anarchism arose as an antithesis. I do not see
"anarcho-capitalism"as a valid synthesis of anarchism and capitalism,
because it does not address the conflicting ideologies of each
movement. I am personally offended that you have accused me of
vandalizing the article. Furthermore, everyone is entitled to opinions
and conceptions, and I think that it is immature to make personal
shots in a discourse forum. Please stick to ideas, not ego.

    "anarcho-capitalism" may be an unfortunate coinage in the view of
"traditional" anarchists (a point that the article goes on for a whole
section for, which has also spawned another whole article) however, it
is one used in academic discourse by about half of the 40 some
citations. It is also the most common self-identification used by its
proponents. I think a moment of reflection by any serious editor would
consider the renaming this article to conform to the
spur-of-the-moment coinage by a single anon user, a coinage that has
no usage other than a wikipedia talk page, would be an ill-conceived
move. You are entitled to your opinion, however this article is not
about your opinion, or about collectivism. It is about an economic
philosophy that rejects the premises you operate from and is therefore
incapable of adhering to your worldview. Sorry, but there are
significant economists that don't buy your argument Saswann 21:07, 14
September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Removed critiques

I have removed from the article some recently-added critiques. There
are two reasons. First, a Wikipedia article is not designed to be a
back-and-forth series of claims, counterclaims, and rebuttals;
controversial articles like this one tend to spiral in that direction.
Second, these passages are not written in very good NPOV style, but
state some critical opinions as facts. Removed content is as follows:

    History does, however, show that in societies of unevenly
distributed wealth, those with money do not really act in a charitable
manner to those without. It might take several very civil wars before
the wealthy people in an anarcho-capitalist society realize that
looking after the poor is in their own interest. Still, even in our
modern society, many states exist where the wealthy ruthlessly
dominate the poor and show no sign of changing their attitides,
despite frequent uprisings.

Comments: to say that "history" does or does not show that is
necessarily a huge generalization. "Civil war" is a nonsequitur in a
stateless society. Anyway, mostly nobody expects anarcho-capitalism to
result in a society which is based on rich people subsidizing poor
people out of the goodness of their hearts. The last sentence about
rich people employing state power in their interests is irrelevant to
the subject of this article.

    [The anarcho-capitalist would respond that in the absence of what
they call "victim disarmament" (gun control), such domination would be
expensive even for the most powerful, who would instead prefer
peaceful trade with all.] The problem with this argument is that there
exist several "economic" ways for a wealthy upper class to keep large
numbers of poor people in check, even if weapons are sold freely. The
possibilites include hiring other poor people to fight as badly-paid
mercenaries, using expensive high-tech weapons such as tanks and
helicopters that the poor cannot fight with their shoestring budget or
establishing a mafia-like system of fear and control.

    Historically, people without the money to buy arms and the time to
train with them were always at a disadvantage, even if weapons were
available for sale or could be easily made. The French revolution
worked only because many poor men had military training and because
guns could be taken from government arsenals in large numbers. If this
is not the case, an armed insurrection by the poor would be
unsuccessful. Moreover, the price of military gear in our world is
influenced by the fact that governments buy huge amounts to equip
their armies. In an anarcho-capitalist world without huge citizen
armies, the price for guns could be much higher. Moreover, wealthy
owners of private armies could easily influence the sale of firearms
by boycotting any gun manufacturer who sold freely to the poor. This
would limit the poor to cheap low-quality arms (perhaps homemade zip
guns or weapons like the Sten submachine gun).

Comments: It's not clear what "economic" means in the above. The
anarcho-capitalist argument is that is quite likely that any situation
involving "Group X keeping Group Y in check by illegitimate violence"
would not be economical at all; i.e., it would not be profitable.
Moreover, this passage, like the above, appears to operate on the
assumption that a society will naturally tend to experience "war"
(something resembling what we know as war), with the sides breaking
down by social class, which is hardly a proven fact; certainly, this
is something that we see a lot in the politics of states, but it's not
at all clear how an elite class would coordinate their efforts in the
absence of a state; they could just as easily wind up fighting each
other. "Historically ..." begins another quite dramatic historical
generalization, followed by yet another, viz. a hypersimplistic
account of why the French revolution worked (note that this, insofar
as it was a popular rebellion, consisted of a group of non-state
actors fighting against a state). As for the price of guns, because a
gun is not a public good, we can predict with some confidence that the
price will always match the demand pretty closely. - Nat Krause 12:53,
10 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]
I can't believe this is a real topic

How stupid can an true anarchist be to believe in such a thing? I'm
into two things. Anarchy and Anarcho-Communism. Capitalism is governed
by a rule because of the production of money most be controlled.
Otherwise, there is no point in having money. Therefore there is a
leader in control with the production and distribution of money. Man
this is such a sad topic.. --Cyberman 00:38, September 9, 2005 (UTC)

    Of course, since anarcho-capitalism doesn't hold that production
of money must be controlled, your point is moot. Most
anarcho-capitalist theorists treat money as anything else, i.e.,
something that can be privatized. Pulpculture 06:02, 10 September 2005
    Well at places like here you can see it best. Wikipedia has become
a fantasyland for reactionary opinionating. The problem is that
there's a thoroughly corrupt structure of sysops who promote this
agenda. No better proof than having a nonsense article liek this one
become featured Viande hachée
    Thanks for your input on how to improve the article. --Golbez
00:43, September 9, 2005 (UTC)

        How about if people take their misinformed griping to a forum
that discusses anarcho-capitalism instead of just cluttering up the

            A better suggestion: read up on the No true Scotsman
article. --I am not good at running 02:46, 9 September 2005

        Turning an idea into a featured article may indirectly promote
that idea. --Zackofalltrades

            The definition of and arguments for this idea are all that
is in the article, and that makes it incomplete, yet its a featured

Reading above I find the following:

    an exclusive POV definition of "true" anarchism that excludes
non-communist ideology
    an assertion that capitalistic exchange is impossible without
state-backed money
    a conspiracy theroy that Wikipedia is in the grip of facist
reactionary sysops
    a critique that somehow Wikipedia shouldn't "promote" ideas like
this by making them featured articles
    and an unsigned critique that if an article on a topic only
discusses the topic it is about it is somehow incomplete

Conclusions to be drawn are left as an exercise for the reader Saswann
12:43, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]
New Age Mumbo Jumbo

I find it disappointing that any dreamt up science-fiction ideology
can creep its way into the Wikipedia and manage to attract enough
attention to become a featured article. This example doesn't do the
Wikipedia's credibility many favours.

Well, a google search shows that the idea of "anarcho-capitalism" is
sure enough popular within the blogger/geek community. But I honestly
doubt that terms like "anarcho-capitialism", "anarcho-communism" (and
other wikipedian anarcho-nonsense) form part of the vocabulary of many
serious scholars. I've done a master's in economics and I can assure
you that before stumbling upon this article I had never even heard
this phrase. I have also asked a few colleages with a background in
social and political sciences and none of them seemed familiar with it
either. Finally, a search on science direct returned zero hits. It
seems the term "anarcho-capitalism" hasn't been mentioned in a
reputable journal, ever (correct me if I'm wrong!).

However, this article is of good quality and makes some very good
points about capitalism. So I suggest a vote to change the problematic
name to something more orthodox. -- Etusalikii 23:30, 11 September
2005 (UTC)[reply]

    Change to "radical capitalism"

    "It seems the term "anarcho-capitalism" hasn't been mentioned in a
reputable journal, ever (correct me if I'm wrong!)." You're wrong.
And, I don't find it surprising that you never heard of it in college.
Colleges typically ignore anything radical unless its leftist. If you
want to learn pro-capitalist laissez-faire theory, you're on your own.
Apparently it's a little too subversive. RJII 23:55, 11 September 2005

        Well, "anarcho-communism" wasn't taught either. Or is that too
subversive as well? Your so called "pro-capitalist laissez-faire"
theory falls under the Austrian school in my opinion, which was
covered extensively. Etusalikii 00:48, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

            Murray Rothbard, a prominent member of the Austrian
school, is considered the person who coined the term
"anarcho-capitalism" and he uses the term extensively in published
works. However, it would be a mistake to limit anarcho-capitalism
simply to the Austrian School since, as is noted in the article, there
are non-Austrians (like David Friedman, largely a neo-classical
economist) who also consider themselves anarcho-capistalists and use
the term (in published works, like Friedman's "Machinery of Freedom").
Just because you were not able to find the term in a quick search of
certain journals does not mean that the term is not the most
appropriate. The article documents plenty of sources that utilize the
word and describe the philosophy.

            I wonder, frankly, what purpose your criticism serves. Are
you pushing for Wikipedia to become an elitist organization that takes
cues only from published academia, or should it remain an actual
encyclopedia of knowledge - unbound by the constraints of a particular
sect of elite society? I think most Wikipedians would consider it the
latter. I doubt the band Oingo Boingo is in many scientific journals,
but I think it entirely appropriate that they exist on Wikipedia.
--Academician 09:07, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                My criticism serves a simple purpose: To call things
by their real name. As I've said before, I don't have a problem with
the content of this article. If the band Oingo Boingo was called "The
Band" by its fans that wouldn't justify a wikipedia entry on "The
Band", instead, this fact would be included as a footnote under the
entry "Oingo Boingo". The Microsoft Corporation is referred to by the
alternative name of "Micro$oft" by millions of computer users. Yet the
wikipedia entry quite rightly uses the "elitist" naming convention
"Microsoft", not "Micro$oft".

                The term "anarcho-capitalism" is a slogan, not a
political philosophy. A handful of individuals and advocacy groups
dropping this phrase in their publications to make "radical
capitalism" sound more sexy doesn't change this fact.

                Apart from not being NPOV, the term is also misleading
because of the questionable association of the content with anarchism.
There is by definition only one anarchism. Whether an anarchist
society organizes itself into de facto free market, feudalist or
collectivist models (or, more likely, a combanation thereof) is
academic. It's still anarchist, not "anarcho-capitalist",
"anarcho-communist", etc. If you think that the phrase "anarchism" has
been hijacked by left anarchists, fight against it on the anarchism
page, but don't respond by hijacking it yourself. -- Etusalikii 12:42,
12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                    Things don't have "real names" that exist
independently of what people call them. "Anarcho-capitalism" is by far
the most commonly used unambiguous description for what we're talking
about here, so that's what we call it. Also, you really think
"anarcho-capitalism" sounds sexy, moreso than "radical capitalism"?
Neither term sounds appealing at all. You really kind of impeach your
good judgment a little by making such a claim. - Nat Krause 03:49, 13
September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        Anarcho-capitalism has been discussed in the economics
literature. I'll give you three cites right now, all available on

            Sutter, Daniel. (1995). "Asymmetric Power Relations and
Cooperation in Anarchy." Southern Economic Journal Vol. 61, No. 3
January): pp. 602–13.
            Hirshleifer, Jack. (1995). "Anarchy and Its Breakdown."
The Journal of Political Economy Vol. 103, No. 1 (February): pp.
            Mueller, Dennis C. (1988). "Anarchy, the Market, and the
State." Southern Economic Journal Vol. 54, No. 4 (April): pp. 821–30.

        They don't call it anarcho-capitalism, but it's clear what
they're referring to. That's why the specific term
"anarcho-capitalism" isn't more common -- because most times, the
context is clear enough to refer to it simply as "anarchism". We can't
do that on Wikipedia, however, since a lot of ideologies very hostile
to anarcho-capitalism share that term. Also, I don't know why you're
looking for anarhco-capitalism on a science database. Moreover, I've
heard that in Italy, most political philosophers feel obligated to
address Rothbard's ideas (Rothbard was the primary exponent of
anarcho-capitalism). The name shouldn't be changed, because
anarhco-capitalism is the most-used term for it, other than
"anarchism" in the context of statelessness and "market anarchism" or
"free market anarchism" all of which are shared by other ideologies.
MrVoluntarist 23:56, 11 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

            >>because anarcho-capitalism is the most-used term for
it<<. Amongst anarcho-capitilists I guess, but obviously not in
mainstream political and scientific life. I can't help feeling the
suspicion that making this a featured article was an attempt at
popularizing the term.

                Like I said, if you bothered to read the full
sentence, it's also referred to simply as "anarchism" like in the
articles I cited for you. Other than "anarchism", "free market
anarchism", and "market anarchism", anarcho-capitalism is the most
common term. If you don't like what's being selected for featured
article status, you have and had every change to vote against it. It
wasn't anarcho-capitalists that selected it to be on the front page.
MrVoluntarist 01:04, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

            >>Also, I don't know why you're looking for
anarhco-capitalism on a science database<< Science direct covers
social sciences and economics too. But from what I've gathered so far,
anarcho-capitalism seems to be more of a religion than a science.
Etusalikii 00:48, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                A philosophy is a philosophy, not a science. Some
science may justify it, but that would not itself be the philosophy.
Apples and oranges. MrVoluntarist 01:04, 12 September 2005

    New Age? What does this have to do with psychic crystals, unicorns
from outer space, or overweight and frightenly-jolly office secretary
ladies who collect crystals, unicorn porcelain figurines, and own 70
cats? --I am not good at running 06:05, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        The content of this article doesn't, but the naming is
reminiscent of nonsensical New Age phrases such as "quantum
transcendence". Etusalikii 12:42, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

            And all this coming a day or two after the featured
article Space opera in Scientology doctrine was on the front page.
Saswann 15:05, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

individualist anarchism as a term for anarcho-capitalism

Saswann, you deleted the claim that "individualist anarchism" was a
term for anarcho-capitalism. Individualist anarchism includes
individualists that espouse the labor theory of value as well as those
that hold the subjective theory of value. There are
anarcho-capitalists who simply refer to themselves as "individualist
anarchists." One notable anarcho-capitalist that comes to mind is
Wendy McElroy. Here is an interview where she says "I am an
individualist anarchist."
RJII 14:40, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        I'm not disputing that it might be used by some ancaps, but
placing it there ignores the fact that it is a highly contentious
assertion. It is not strictly an alternate term, but als refers to a
seprate philosophy. It makes as much sense as putting "anarchism" in
that box. Technically true, but also highly misleading and soaked in
POV. The box should be limited to terms that, if existed as articles,
would be sutible redirects to this article. Saswann 14:54, 12
September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

            By that reasoning you would have to also remove "market
anarchism," "stateless liberalism," "private property anarchism," and
"voluntarism," As the 19th century individualists are also called
those things, especially "market anarchists" which is a very popular
term for them. RJII 16:54, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                I guess so. . . though there may be a better way to
deal with it. I'm going to try a slightly different format. Saswann
17:15, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]
                Ok, I think I have a workable solution. BTW, it would
be nice if you turned that McElroy refrence into a note in the text.
Saswann 17:33, 12 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Anarcho-capitalist Gangland? (and more possible ancap areas)

Under the proposed form of government, "coercion" (see article's
definition of 'state') would be a tool available to everyone. This is
often the case in frontier areas, "failed states" (like PNG), areas
claimed by multiple states (like the Congo) and some US inner-urban
areas. These are generally not great places to live *because* of the
multiple entities using coercion.

Historically, such areas have not been this way for long. One group
obtains a monopoly, forming (or more often expanding) a state. For
instance, the "Wild West" of the US only lasted about a decade before
the US state controlled the area.

This monopolistic group might be a small subset of all residents. This
would make it similar to un-state-sancioned monopolist corporations
like Microsoft. The group might encompass most or all residents. This
would make it like a democratic state. As soon as norms exist and
there's a special group with exclusive rights to enforce them, there's
a state.

Every working-age male Swiss citizen has a gun. It's law. Many people
in the US have a gun. That's legal. Yet it's only in the US that many
people with this lethal power feel they have a right to use coercion.
Guns don't kill people - people who feel they have a right to use
coercion kill people.

Which is preferable, a monolithic state that will kill you if they
feel like it, or millions of individuals that will kill you if they
feel like it? That is difference between anarcho-capitalism and
statism. The state is easier to understand and control.

The article should include something on why this is all rubbish...
matturn 05:03, 30 September 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    Wow, you certainly do make the choice between the state and no
state sound like an unpalatable one. No reasonable person would want
either, the way you describe them. Anyway, you seem to be citing some
cases of blatant failure and destruction by states ("failed states",
the Congo, American inner cities) as critiques of anti-statism. The
exception, though, is the old "Wild West", which was apparently a
pretty nice place to live (people kept moving there, after all). As I
mentioned to Bob99 above, this talk page isn't really the right place
for polemics, so you might want to bring up the same points on a
political forum somewhere.

        Good point about this not being the place for polemics. I
should have thought a bit more and put the case more susinctly. I'll
try that now: plurality of coersive power in an area (ie
anarcho-capitalism) has occured many times in history. It's the case
in quite a few places now. However, these periods have almost always
been short, filled with violence, and quickly resulted in the
formation of a state (or the extension of one into the area).

        I don't believe the article sufficiently addresses this
historical record.

        BTW, people kept heading west because of the free land. They
didn't like the anarchy, that's why it didn't last long. Order has a
terrible habit of being more productive than anarchy...

    (by the way, it would be nice if everyone in Switzerland had a gun
and could use it, but apparently they have very strict ammunition
control there). - Nat Krause 07:13, 1 October 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        Anarchy isn't the lack of "order," but the lack of coerced
order. Many see capitalism as "economic anarchy" --the lack of a
central authority determing prices, etc. Many would argue that anarchy
is what's most conducive to order, and that coercion introduces
disorder. Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, for one: "Liberty is not the
daughter but the mother of order." RJII 20:00, 2 October 2005

            In any event, the people being discussed in this article
certainly believe that anarchy and order do not constitute an eiter/or
choice. Please feel free to add anything you think is missing from the
article. Of course, the more sources you can cite, especially for
opinions and controversial facts, the better. - Nat Krause 06:58, 3
October 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Walter Block

I've got nothing against Walter Block, but I'm given to wonder
periodically why he is single out (in addition to Rothbard) in the
intro as the co-founder of modern ancap thought. What makes Block's
role different from that of Rothbard's other founders and cohorts, or
from that of David Friedman, the Tannehills, Robert Le Fevre, etc.? -
Nat Krause 04:16, 17 October 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Cause Block kicks ass! --Christofurio 16:26, 5 January 2006 (UTC)[reply]
Somalia POV

I deleted this section:

However, Somalia is far from being a paragon of anarcho-capitalism, as
it is lacking in sophisticated systems of private protection of
individual liberty and private property from criminal elements. Such
systems have not yet developed, hence, crime is rampant in some areas
according to some news reports. However, those wishing for protection
from bandits may pay security guards or even warlords for protection.
There is, however, a rudimentary legal system which has been called "a
free market for the supply, adjudication and enforcement of law."[5]
It remains to be seen if private solutions develop to the point of
providing high quality security.

Is wrong because it is not true. There is a full private right
enforcement in Somalia as reported in Van Notten's new book.
Furthermore, it makes no prove to show some "warlords" news as
evidience of lawlessness. --Irgendwer 19:21, 3 November 2005

I agree that the Somalia section needs to be cleaned up. For example,
the claim that "Nevertheless, though Somalia continues to be a poor
country that has been ravaged by civil war, the number of individuals
living in abject poverty (individuals living on less than $1 per day)
has diminished" is not sourced. If it is meant to be sourced from the
world bank report that follows, then it is not supported, as that
report only gives the info for a single year, so there is no way to
see if it has grown or diminished, only that it is slightly less than
neighboring countries. It would probably also be more balanced to not
that while the abject poverty statistic is 7% less, per capita income
is about half and access to safe water is 1/3 (which the report blames
in part on the absence of government). The section also refers to
education being private, but doesn't mention that enrollment is 65%
lower in Somalia than neighboring countries.

There is also a general tone to the Somalia section that seems to
skirt POV issues. For example, while the text reads, "One business
sector that is said to be doing especially well is
telecommunications." and goes on to note that there are even internet
cafes, the article it sources reads that the telecommunications
industry is one of, "Somalia's few success stories in the anarchy of
recent years."

There is little way of knowing how much the statistics offered are
influenced by Somaliland or Puntland, in which clan rule (i.e. a
state) extends over several regions. Several studies have indicated
that data from Somalia is hard to get and generally inaccurate, as
shown by the lack of economic data in the world bank database [6]
(from which these figures were taken), and the contradiction that can
be seen in figures like the literacy rate estimated by the CIA
factbook (38% 2001) versus the world bank index (81% 2003). As the CIA
factbook says, "Statistics on Somalia's GDP, growth, per capita
income, and inflation should be viewed skeptically."

There have also been considerable donations to regions of Somalia by
outside states such as the EU, Italy, and the US, to shore up their
infrastructure, while its debts have continued to grow, so it is
difficult to know how much of there development is from lack of a
state or from the presence of foreign state investment. Finally, many
of the world bank's report have not been glowing concerning the state
of the economy, "Somalia is one of the poorest countries in the world,
a situation aggravated by the civil war and the absence of a
functioning national government for more than a decade. The impact of
state failure on human development in Somalia has been profound,
resulting in the collapse of political institutions, the destruction
of social and economic infrastructure, and massive internal and
external migrations." [7]

In other words, some of the claims made in the article aren't
supported by the data being cited. I'll clean it up myself if no one
else bothers, just wanted to give a heads up for the reasons first.
Revkat 05:25, 4 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Yes, please, clean up the nonsense. --Irgendwer 13:46, 4 November 2005
Revkat deleting source

Revkat continues to delete the source in the article from Richard
Garner, that was in Ifeminist Newsletter issue of May 14 2002. On
Peter Sabatini's "Libertarianism: Bogus Anarchy" His explanation is
"It was a post to an online forum, I know because I was there at the
time and watched a friend participate in the discussion. Please don't
resort to an online forum for a source." First of all, can you prove
that? Secondly, it was published in Ifeminist Newsletter, and even if
it was originally from an online forum I'm sure it was published with
permission from Garner). Your justification for deleting this source
from that contemporary individualist anarchist (who recently converted
to anarcho-capitalism from labor theory individualism) is invalid.
RJII 18:00, 8 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    You want a source? Ask Gardner, he hangs about on wikipedia
sometimes and tends to be honest about that sort of thing. Or you
could ask me, I'm a eye witness to the event, having watched
discussions between Gardner and a friend on that forum at that time.
Its impossible to show the forum itself, as McElroy doesn't keep
archives from back then. As for it being "published" in the ifeminist
newsletter, that is an "e-newsletter" sent primarily to subscribers of
the ifeminist forums. In other words, someone cut-and-paste it from
the forum into an email with a bunch of CCs and sent it out. You want
to start including mailing list posts as sources? Please say the word,
because I've got a whole lot of junk written by various anarchists
over the years on forums and in email lists. Heck, the @-list alone
could add thousands of sources to this article. I just thought we had,
you know, standards.

    And as for Gardner's political viewpoints, yep, he is a confused
guy. Is that evidence for something? Revkat 18:25, 8 November 2005

        So you indeed have no evidence to back up your claim. And, I
sure don't believe you. The source is staying in. RJII 18:31, 8
November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

            Nope, it isn't. Forum posts sent to an email list do not a
real source make. Revkat 18:41, 8 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                All we have is your word that that's the case. And,
that's not worth much at all. The article is from Ifeminist
Newsletter. RJII 19:03, 8 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

                    Really RJ, if this is the road you want to go
down, good luck. Revkat 20:04, 8 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Revkat (formerly Kevehs) is putting in a source with the explanation:
Further evidence according to RJ's "email lists are okay" standard for
sources. I'd just like to state for the record that this is a lie. I
never said any such thing. Read this section for more information.
RJII 20:25, 8 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    RJ insists on inserting evidence from an online forum. The website
of the forum keeps no archives, so there is no way to prove its
origin. So he claims that is was "published" in a newsletter from This "e-newsletter" is nothing more than an email
mailing list, so even if he doubts the fact that it was cut-and-pasted
from a forum (as the format demonstrates pretty well) and refuses to
contact Gardner over the issue, it still resolves to nothing more than
a mailing list. Given his refusal to stick to respectable sources, and
his habit to interpret things from sources he cites that are not
supported by the text, I feel it should be completely legitimate, from
his perspective, for me to post sources from a mailing list as well.
Revkat 20:52, 8 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        Rehash. Already rebutted. RJII 21:12, 8 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]


Not to shout, but recent edits severely screwed up the footnote
numbering. Please note the following when placing references in the

    Do not EVER put an unnamed off-site link in the article. They
throw off the footnote numbering within the article. I commented out
half a dozen. I am making no calls on the value of the references in
themselves, but please name them if you feel they should be included.
    When adding a footnote, be sure that the note at the end of the
article is placed in the correct position! The notes in the table need
to be in the exact same order as the references in the article.

This might seem a little anal, but this is a featured article, and
messing up formatting like this makes the whole thing look amateurish,
which shouldn't be anyone's goal here--Saswann 20:25, 9 November 2005
Self-ownership not all that central

This article describes the idea of self-ownership as central to
anarcho-cap. It seems to me that the presentations of anarcho-cap by
David Friedman don't depend upon this idea, but are much more
pragmatic in style. I doubt that the Asutrians (prior to Rothbard, who
seems to have revised them considerably in the course of eulogizing
them) would have had any use for the term or idea.

One's relationship with one's self isn't that of ownership, but that
of identity. Furthermore, saying so is perfectly consistent with
reaching anarcho-cap conclusions on the basis of what succeeds and
what fails in creating or destroying value. --Christofurio 21:27, 13
November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    There does seem to be a problem. There is a difference between
basing it on the assumption that individuals own themselves and basing
it on contractualism. In the latter case self-ownership comes about
only by contract, and so contract is more fundamental than
self-ownership. And you can get even more fundamental than that, if
you say there is no natural right of contract but for pragmatic
reasons it makes sense to act as if there is, etc. RJII 02:22, 22
November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

        The idea of self-ownership is indeed central to ancap, even if
one does not accept self-ownership as a natural right. Ownership means
de facto use of and control over a "thing" (and the person is a
"thing"). Hence, the non-aggression axiom (thou shalt not agressively
interfere with another's person or property) defines and establishes,
at least in part, a property right. That is, one should be free from
aggressive interference with his use of and control over his person
and property. Therefore, self-ownership is a central idea to ancap,
whether it is natural law, positive law, or otherwise.

        Of course, the concept of property, particularly "rightly
held" property, needs further development. In a nutshell, however,
property is an extension of the psyche--the body and other
instrumentalities through which the psyche acts on the world. (That is
from whence the word "property" comes in this context, meaning
"attribute.") And "rightly held" property is that property which does
not require violation of the non-aggression axiom for its acquisition
and its continued use and control.

            It depends on the anarcho-capitalists. Some think property
comes about through labor; others think it can only come about through
contract. RJII 04:18, 22 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Non-Aggression Axiom--Proposed Clarification

May I suggest the following clarification to the non-aggression axiom.
The text following the Rothbard quotation, as presently written, is
cluttered and confusing.

First, the prescription against the "initiation of force, or the
threat of force" is ambiguous, because it can be taken, incorrectly,
to mean that the "initiation of the threat of force" is forbidden. In
a more precise formulation, this prohibition should clearly not apply
to a threat to DEFEND one's person or property by force, regardless of
whether the threat is made before or after someone else acts
aggressively. In other words, when distinguishing between initial and
defensive force, the correct equivalent of "initial force" is the
"threat of initial force."

Second, "fraud" should be made more clearly equivalent to "force."
Indeed, the purpose and result of both force and fraud are the same:
they are used to change another person's conduct. Fraud differs from
force by merely this: the perpetrator of fraud changes his victim's
conduct by intentionally creating a false reality in the victim's
mind, i.e., if the victim had not been defrauded, then he would not
have changed his conduct unless he had been compelled to do so by
actual force. Therefore, fraud, like the threat of force, is the
psychic equivalent of force.

Therefore, I would rewrite the non-aggression axiom thus: "One should
neither initiate force or fraud, nor threaten to initiate force
(threats and fraud being the psychic equivalents of actual force),
against another person or his property."

Any objections or other comment? LEKulp 02:15, 22 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    You have a good point. It's a threat of initiating force that's
forbidden --initiating a threat to use force isn't itself forbidden if
the threat is to use force to defend oneself. But also, it needs to be
clear that it's physical force. "initiate physical force..." RJII
02:20, 22 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

Agreed. The most fundamental of the principles must be stated with
absolute clarity. So, as per your suggestion, the axiom should be
restated as follows: "One should neither initiate physical force or
fraud, nor threaten to initiate physical force (threats and fraud
being the psychic equivalents of physical force), against another
person or his property."

Incidently, I have trouble calling this an "axiom," because it is not
self-evident. Anyway, the article is meant to be descriptive, and
ancaps do use the word "axiom" in referring to this principle. I
suppose that it resembles an axiom insofar as it is a political "first
principle." The logically antecedent premises probably come under the
category of ethics. LEKulp 03:23, 22 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

    I have a problem calling it an "axiom" as well, because like you
said it implies that it's self-evident. Also, it intimates natural
rights, which not all libertarians believe in. It's alternatively
called the "non-agression principle," so we could use that. RJII
03:59, 22 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

It is axiomatic that all great minds think alike. But I must admit
that, having been reared as a Catholic, I just can't get away from
natural rights. Lost the faith, but still hung up on medieval
Scholastic stuff. LEKulp 04:27, 22 November 2005 (UTC)[reply]

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