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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Occupy Wall Street Part VII: My Head Explodes Trying to Keep Up

After Pat M., I spoke with Evan P. who is a farmer and glassblower currently living in Grafton, New Hampshire. To help keep your own personal head from exploding as you read this, I'll give you some facts up front.

Evan requested his picture not be taken, but this was his sign.
Agorism is a political philosophy that espouses black market capitalism and no government, basing all transactions between individuals. Usually referred to as Anarcho-Capitalism, agorism is a wing of libertarianism that is closest to full-on anarchy. The main difference between anarchy and agorism is the use of capitalist transactions (in the latter) as opposed to bartering and market cooperation (in the former).

Me: So the first thing you said to me is that you hoped I was not from the Libertarian Party. Why?
Evan: Because Libertarians are trying to run people's lives. I'm an Agorist.

Me: How quickly do you want change?
Evan: I don't know what you mean.
Me: There are no jobs, the economy is in the tank. How quickly do you see change?
Evan: Well, everything is always changing.
Me: How quickly do you see the change that you want?
Evan: Well, I'm making it right now.

Me: Change takes time. As a libertarian I want to gradually change the system so that the government plays a lesser role in everyone's lives.
Evan: Is that what the Libertarian Party wants? I thought they wanted to, like, rule people's lives.
Me: I don't know if you know what libertarians are then.
Evan: Not libertarians, the Libertarian Party. I've read their platform, well I read the one before they revised it and fucked it up and then I read the new one and its much worse than the old one. They want to become part of the government instead of withdrawing from it and stopping funding for it. We don't have to get involved [with the government] we just have to stop holding it up. We don't have to fight to push it over we just have to stop holding it up and it will collapse under its own weight. We have to build a counter-economy. We have to build underground economies and build the kind of society we want to live in now with peaceful voluntary sustainable alternatives. I think agorism is applicable no matter where we are, [at] any peaceful voluntary interaction. Right now we are peacefully and voluntarily interactiing so right now between us there exists a state of anarchy. If a cop came up and started interfering between us then there would be statism involved. But right now anywhere where the enforcers aren't there is anarchy. We are already most of the way there.

Me: Okay. That works on a one-to-one scale.
Evan: Everything is on an individual scale.
Me: So how do you handle the individuals who don't support your right to interact freely and peacefully?
Evan: Well, I don't support them. I would withdraw my funding from them.
Me: How do you handle the individual who is just going to take what's yours because he wants it?
Evan: Well as individuals we all have the right to defend ourselves. We have the right to organize into a group.
Me: Which then becomes a state.
Evan: Not if its voluntary.

Me: Sum up the root of what you believe in one word.
Evan: Love.
Me: What about in those instances where love does not exist?
Evan: Where does love not exist?
Me: I'll take you to some places a few blocks from here tonight where love does not exist.
Evan: Let's spread love all over the place until its everywhere then.

Remember when you lived in the Seventies and you would go to parties and everybody talked like this? I wonder if the Democrat Party will still hitch their donkey cart to the Occupy Wall Street movement after hearing Evan talk about hoping the government collapses under its own weight?

Patrick G. and Dave U. are living
the communal life in Poughkeepsie,
Next I visited with three guys from Poughkeepsie, New York, who live on a commune. Well sort of. The guy on the right has a wife (and I think a kid, but the recording became unintelligible as he explained his family situation), and the guy with the tape on his mouth doesn't. The guy on the left (striped shirt just out of frame) was pretty much incoherent so I couldn't grasp what his deal was. They were living an agorist agrarian life of farming and living off the land without cash or being part of the economy.

When I asked them how they put a roof over their heads they reluctantly admitted that someone was paying the rent on the converted garage they were sharing. They also eventually admitted that someone was paying their car expenses because "you gotta get around."

Their political philosophy is "spiritual" and they feel the root of all of our current problems is a "lack of compassion."

They're not leeching off of me as far as I know, but they are dependent on someone else for support. They're also not contributing much to the society they live in.

I've tried to be as objective as possible in compiling my reports. My mind was open and I was hoping to find a coherent philosophical movement as arrived at Zuccotti Park on Saturday. I take everything I hear from the MSM with a grain of salt so I wanted to learn for myself. Listening back to the recordings I made, I am confident my objectivity is intact.

Tune in. Turn on. Drop out. At least until the puppet-masters in the Democrat Party grab on to you to help them form their version of the Tea Party.

1 comment:

JRH said...

I think this is something of an unfair portrayal of agorism. Just like there is Christianity and then there are Christians... This is just hippy nonsense. But the fundamental principle of withdrawing consent is very important, and I think getting involved with political parties can run the risk of losing this principle. Of course, I am always for choosing the master that whips the least, so to speak. Nonetheless, there is no using conservative means for libertarian ends; it won't work on its own.