Anarchist Communism – Its Basis and Principles – by Pëtr Kropotkin (1927) via kindle version from anarchist library [https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/petr-kropotkin-anarchist-communism-its-basis-and-principles]
pëtr kropotkin.. kropotkin dirty jobs law
notes/quotes – 19 pages:
As to the method followed by the anarchist thinker, it entirely differs from that followed by the utopists. The anarchist thinker does not resort to metaphysical conceptions (like “natural rights,” the “duties of the State,” and so on) to establish what are, in his opinion, the best conditions for realizing the greatest happiness of humanity. He follows, on the contrary, the course traced by the modern philosophy of evolution. He studies human society as it is now and was in the past; and without either endowing humanity as a whole, or separate individuals, with superior qualities which they do not possess, he merely considers society as an aggregation of organisms trying to find out the best ways of combining the wants of the individual with those of cooperation for the welfare of the species. He studies society and tries to discover its tendencies past and present, its growing needs, intellectual and economic, and in his ideal he merely points out in which direction evolution goes. He distinguishes between the real wants and tendencies of human aggregations and the accidents (want of knowledge, migrations, wars, conquests) which have prevented these tendencies from being satisfied. And he concludes that the two most prominent, although often unconscious, tendencies throughout our history have been: first, a tendency towards integrating labor for the production of all riches in common, so as finally to render it impossible to discriminate the part of the common production due to the separate individual; and second, a tendency towards the fullest freedom of the individual in the prosecution of all aims, beneficial both for himself and for society at large. The ideal of the anarchist is thus a mere summing up of what he considers to be the next phase of evolution. It is no longer a matter of faith; it is a matter for scientific discussion.
oi.. makes it sound like intellect ness/academia ness.. and so too.. based on history ness and research ness.. oi
By showing that the “struggle for existence” must be conceived not merely in its restricted sense of a struggle between individuals for the means of subsistence but in its wider sense of adaptation of all individuals of the species to the best conditions for the survival of the species, as well as for the greatest possible sum of life and happiness for each and all, it has permitted us to deduce the laws of moral science from the social needs and habits of *mankind. It has shown us the infinitesimal role played by positive law in moral evolution, and the immense role played by the natural growth of altruistic feelings, **which develop as soon as the conditions of life favor their growth. It has thus enforced the opinion of social reformers as to ***the necessity of modifying the conditions of life for improving man, instead of trying to improve human nature by moral teachings while life works in an opposite direction..t Finally, by studying human society from the biological point of view, it has come to the conclusions arrived at by anarchists from the study of history and present tendencies as to further progress being in the line of socialization of wealth and integrated labor combined with the fullest possible freedom of the individual.
*but to date.. has just been about ‘needs/habits’ of whales in sea world
**huge to 1\ hari rat park law and 2\ how/why global leap is not ridiculous
***huge.. again hari rat park law.. sans any form of supposed to’s of school/work.. sans any form of m\a\p
Owing to this circumstance, our production takes a wrong turn. It takes no care of the needs of the community; its only aim is to increase the profits of the capitalist. And we have, therefore, — the continuous fluctuations of industry, the crisis coming periodically nearly every ten years, and throwing out of employment several hundred thousand men who are brought to complete misery, whose children grow up in the gutter, ready to become inmates of the prison and workhouse. The workmen being unable to purchase with their wages the riches they are producing, industry must search for markets elsewhere, amid the middle classes of other nations. It must find markets, in the East, in Africa, anywhere; it must increase, by trade, the number of its serfs in Egypt, in India, in the Congo. But everywhere it finds competitors in other nations which rapidly enter into the same line of industrial development. And wars, continuous wars, must be fought for the supremacy in the world-market — wars for the possession of the East, wars for getting possession of the seas, wars for the right of imposing heavy duties on foreign merchandise. The thunder of European guns never ceases; whole generations are slaughtered from time to time; and we spend in armaments the third of the revenue of our States — a revenue raised, the poor know with what difficulties.
And finally, the injustice of our partition of wealth exercises the most deplorable effect on our morality. Our principles of morality say: “Love your neighbor as yourself”; but let a child follow this principle and take off his coat to give it to the shivering pauper, and his mother will tell him that he must never understand moral principles in their direct sense. If he lives according to them, he will go barefoot, without alleviating the misery around him! Morality is good on the lips, not in deeds. Our preachers say, “Who works, prays,” and everyone endeavors to make others work for him. They say, “Never lie!” and politics are a big lie. And we accustom ourselves and our children to live under this double-faced morality, which is hypocrisy, and to conciliate our double-facedness by sophistry. Hypocrisy and sophistry become the very basis of our life. But society cannot live under such a morality. It cannot last so: it must, it will, be changed.
The question is thus no more a mere question of bread. It covers the whole field of human activity. But it has at its bottom a question of social economy, and we conclude: The means of production and of satisfaction of all needs of society, having been created by the common efforts of all, *must be at the disposal of all. The private appropriation of requisites for production is neither just nor beneficial. All must be placed on the same footing as producers and consumers of wealth. That will be the only way for society to seep out of the bad conditions which have been created by centuries of wars and oppression. That will be the only guarantee for further progress in a direction of equality and freedom, which have always been the real, although unspoken goal of humanity.
**huge huge.. no strings attached
The views taken in the above as to the combination of efforts being the chief source of our wealth explain why most anarchists see in communism the only equitable solution as to the adequate remuneration of individual efforts. There was a time when a family engaged in agriculture supplemented by a few domestic trades could consider the corn they raised and the plain woolen cloth they wove as productions of their own and nobody else’s labor. Even then such a view was not quite correct: there were forests cleared and roads built by common efforts; and even then the family had continually to apply for communal help, as is still the case in so many village communities. But now, in the extremely interwoven state of industry of which each branch supports all others, such an individualistic view can be held no more. If the iron trade and the cotton industry of this country have reached so high a degree of development, they have done so owing to the parallel growth of thousands of other industries, great and small; to the extension of the railway system; to an increase of knowledge among both the skilled engineers and the mass of the workmen; to a certain training in organization slowly developed among producers; and, above all, to the world-trade which has itself grown up, thanks to works executed thousands of miles away. The Italians who died from cholera in digging the Suez Canal or from “tunnel-disease” in the St. Gothard Tunnel have contributed as much towards the enrichment of this country as the British girl who is prematurely growing old in serving a machine at Manchester; and this girl as much as the engineer who made a labor-saving improvement in our machinery. How can we pretend to estimate the exact part of each of them in the riches accumulated around us?
beyond the monastic self.. i’m never just me.. none of us are free.. et al
Such a society would be compelled to abandon the wage-system altogether. It appears impossible that the mitigated individualism of the collectivist school could co-exist with the partial communism implied by holding land and machinery in common — unless imposed by a powerful government, much more powerful than all those of our own times. The present wage system has grown up from the appropriation of the necessaries for production by the few; it was a necessary condition for the growth of the present capitalist production, and it cannot outlive it, even if an attempt be made to pay to the worker the full value of his produce, and hours-of-labor-checks be substituted for money. Common possession of the necessaries for production implies the common enjoyment of the fruits of the common production; and we consider that an *equitable organization of society can only arise when every wage-system is abandoned,.. t and when everybody, **contributing for the common well-being to the full extent, of his capacities, shall enjoy also from the common stock of society to..t the fullest possible extent of his needs.
*yeah that.. at least that.. but actually any form of m\a\p abandoned
**ie of form of m\a\p .. has to be sans any conditions/strings..
The same spirit pervades thousands of other institutions. Museums, free libraries, and free public schools; parks and pleasure grounds; paved and lighted streets, free for everybody’s use; water supplied to private dwellings, with a growing tendency towards disregarding the exact amount of it used by the individual; tramways and railways which have already begun to introduce the season ticket or the uniform tax, and will surely go much further in this line when they are no longer private property: all these are tokens showing in what direction further progress is to be expected.
rather.. disregarding amount ness of anything.. any form of m\a\p
It is in the direction of putting the wants of the individual above the valuation of the service he has rendered, or might render, to society; in considering society as a whole, so intimately connected together that a service rendered to any individual is a service rendered to the whole society..t The librarian of the British Museum does not ask the reader what have been his previous services to society, he simply gives him the books he requires; and for a uniform fee, a scientific society leaves its gardens and museums at the free disposal of each member. The crew of a lifeboat do not ask whether the men of a distressed ship are entitled to be rescued at a risk of life; and the Prisoners’ Aid Society does not inquire what a released prisoner is worth. Here are men in need of a service; they are fellow men, and no further rights are required.. t
nationality: human ness
If our productive powers were fully applied to increasing the stock of the staple necessities for life;..t if a modification of the present conditions of property increased the number of producers by all those who are not producers of wealth now; and if manual labor reconquered its place of honor in society, the communist tendencies already existing would immediately enlarge their sphere of application..t
only if legit needs.. otherwise becomes (keeps on being) assumption/waste/distraction game.. (and minus words in middle of reds.. oi)
Taking all this into account, and still more the practical aspects of the question as to how private property might become common property, most of the anarchists maintain that the very next step to be made by society, as soon as the present regime of property undergoes a modification, will be in a communist sense. We are communists. But our communism is not that of the authoritarian school: it is anarchist communism, communism without government, free communism. It is a synthesis of the two chief aims pursued by humanity since the dawn of its history — economic freedom and political freedom.
rather .. all the freedoms
I have already said that anarchism means no-government. We know well that the word “anarchy” is also used in current phraseology as synonymous with disorder. But that meaning of “anarchy,” being a derived one, implies at least two suppositions. It implies, first, that wherever there is no government there is disorder; and it implies, moreover, that order, due to a strong government and a strong police, is always beneficial. Both implications, however, are anything but proved. . t There is plenty of order — we should say, of harmony — in many branches of human activity where the government, happily, does not interfere. As to the beneficial effects of order, the kind of order that reigned at Naples under the Bourbons surely was not preferable to some disorder started by Garibaldi; while the Protestants of this country will probably say that the good deal of disorder made by Luther was preferable, at any rate, to the order which reigned under the Pope. While all agree that harmony is always desirable, there is no such unanimity about order, and still less about the “order” which is supposed to reign in our modern societies. So that we have no objection whatever to the use of the word “anarchy” as a negation of what has been often described as order..t
carhart-harris entropy law et al
By taking for our watchword anarchy in its sense of no government, we intend to express a pronounced tendency of human society. In history we see that precisely those epochs when small parts of humanity broke down the power of their rulers and reassumed their freedom were epochs of the greatest progress, economic and intellectual. Be it the growth of the free cities, whose unrivaled monuments — free work of free associations of workers — still testify to the revival of mind and of the well-being of the citizen; be it the great movement which gave birth to the Reformation — those epochs when the individual recovered some part of his freedom witnessed the greatest progress. And if we carefully watch the present development of civilized nations, we cannot fail to discover in it a marked and ever-growing movement towards limiting more and more the sphere of action of government, so as to leave more and more liberty to the initiative of the individual. After having tried all kinds of government, and endeavored to solve the insoluble problem of having a government “which might compel the individual to obedience, without escaping itself from obedience to collectivity,” humanity is trying now to free itself from the bonds of any government whatever, and to respond to its needs of organization by the free understanding between individuals pursuing the same common aims..t
need global detox 1st.. so can hear/grok legit needs as aims
Home Rule, even for the smallest territorial unit or group, becomes a growing need. Free agreement is becoming a substitute for law. And *free cooperation a substitute for governmental guardianship. One after the other those activities which were considered as the functions of government during the last two centuries are disputed; **society moves better the less it is governed. And the more we study the advance made in this direction, as well as the inadequacy of governments to fulfill the expectations placed in them, the more we are bound to conclude that humanity, ***by steadily limiting the functions of government, is marching towards reducing them finally to nil. We already foresee a state of society where the liberty of the individual will be limited by no laws, no bonds — by nothing else but his own social habits and the necessity, which everyone feels, of finding cooperation, support, and sympathy among his neighbors.
*but we just keep doing voluntary compliance ness
**indeed.. so ult would be sans any form of m\a\p
***yeah.. reason we haven’t yet gotten to global equity/detox/reset.. because gradual ness is killing our chances.. killing our sync
humanity needs a leap.. to get back/to simultaneous spontaneity .. simultaneous fittingness.. everyone in sync..
Of course the no-government ethics will meet with at least as many objections as the no-capital economics. *Our minds have been so nurtured in prejudices as to the providential functions of government that anarchist ideas must be received with distrust. Our whole education, from childhood to the grave, nurtures the belief in the necessity of a government and its beneficial effects..t Systems of philosophy have been elaborated to support this view; history has been written from this standpoint; theories of law have been circulated and taught for the same purpose. All politics are based on the same principle, each politician saying to people he wants to support him: “Give me the governmental power; I will, I can, relieve you from the hardships of your present life.”..t All our education is permeated with the same teachings. We may open any book of sociology, history, law, or ethics: everywhere we find government, its organization, its deeds, playing so prominent a part that we grow accustomed to suppose that the State and the political men are everything; that there is nothing behind the big statesmen. The same teachings are daily repeated in the Press. Whole columns are filled up with minutest records of parliamentary debates, of movements of political persons. And, while reading these columns, we too often forget that besides those few men whose importance has been so swollen up as to overshadow humanity, **there is an immense body of men — mankind, in fact — growing and dying, living in happiness or sorrow, laboring and consuming, thinking and creating.
*graeber rethink law et al.. maté parenting law et al
Modern progress is really towards the free aggregation of free individuals so as to supplant government in all those functions which formerly were entrusted to it, and which it mostly performed so badly.
but if legit free.. not even around those functions.. oi.. previous ie’s.. ie: red cross, credit payment, coop ness.. still whales speaking whalespeak
It is becoming evident that it is merely stupid to elect a few men and to entrust them with the task of making laws on all possible subjects, of which subjects most of them are utterly ignorant. It is becoming understood that majority rule is as defective as any other kind of rule; and humanity searches and finds new channels for resolving the pending questions.
any form of democratic admin
The Postal Union did not elect an international postal parliament in order to make laws for all postal organizations adherent to the Union. The railways of Europe did not elect an international railway parliament in order to regulate the running of the trains and the partition of the income of international traffic. And the Meteorological and Geological Societies of Europe did not elect either meteorological or geological parliaments to plan polar stations, or to establish a uniform subdivision of geological formations and a uniform coloration of geological maps. They proceeded by means of agreement. To agree together they resorted to congresses; but, while sending delegates to their congresses they did not say to them, “Vote about everything you like — we shall obey.” They put forward questions and discussed them first themselves; then they sent delegates acquainted with the special question to be discussed at the congress, and they sent delegates — not rulers. Their delegates returned from the congress with no laws in their pockets, but with proposals of agreements. Such is the way assumed now (the very old way, too) for dealing with questions of public interest — not the way of law-making by means of a representative government.
oi oi oi
Each economic phase of life implies its own political phase; and it is impossible to touch the very basis of the present economic life — private property — without a corresponding change in the very basis of the political organization. Life already shows in which direction the change will be made. Not in increasing the powers of the State, but in resorting to free organization and free federation in all those branches which are now considered as attributes of the State.
again.. all that would be irrelevant if org’d around legit needs.. if we matched curiosities rather than recreated (aka: perpetuated) what we already have
First of all, there are *two kinds of agreements: there is the free one which is entered upon by free consent, as a free choice between different courses equally open to each of the agreeing parties. And there is the enforced agreement, imposed by one party upon the other, and accepted by the latter from sheer necessity; **in fact, it is no agreement at all, it is a mere submission to necessity. Unhappily, the great bulk of what are now described as agreements belong to the latter category. .. As long as three-quarters of humanity are compelled to enter into agreements of that description, force is of course necessary, both to enforce the supposed agreements and to maintain such a state of things. Force — and a great deal of force — is necessary to prevent the laborers from taking possession of what they consider unjustly appropriated by the few; and force is necessary to continually bring new “uncivilized nations” under the same conditions.
*rather 3.. 3rd is more matching ness (imagine if we) than agreeing ness.. or could say only 1.. because 1st 2 are same song
**to me.. all agreement ness is submission.. required force (any form of structural violence.. any form of m\a\p).. but not to legit necessity
But we do not see the necessity of force for enforcing agreements freely entered upon. . Free agreements need not be enforced.
yeah.. not sure any agreement is not forced in some way (maté trump law .. brown belonging law.. et al)
So we shall not try to convince those who can be convinced only by accomplished facts..
unjustifiable strategy ness et al.. cancerous distraction.. graeber model law et al..
With us, work is a habit, and idleness an artificial growth.
trained/forced habit.. depends on what is meant by idleness.. norton productivity law et al..
Overwork is repulsive to human nature — not work.
oi.. not overwork.. ie: when can’t not do something.. et al.. it’s about things assumed/imposed.. not amount..
*Work is a physiological necessity, a necessity of spending accumulated bodily energy, a necessity which is health and life itself. If **so many branches of useful work are so reluctantly done now, it is merely because they mean overwork, or they are improperly organized.
depends on defn of work.. i’d call work like this: kilpi work law – solving other people’s problems et al.. and the thing we can’t not do.. i’d call art.. so disagree with *this
**rather.. because branches irrelevant s and cancerous distractions to legit free people
As to the childish question, repeated for fifty years: “Who would do disagreeable work?” frankly I regret that none of our savants has ever been brought to do it, be it for only one day in his life. If there is still work which is really disagreeable in itself, it is only because our scientific men have never cared to consider the means of rendering it less so. They have always known that there were plenty of starving men who would do it for a few cents a day.
kropotkin dirty jobs law et al
As to the third — the chief — objection, which maintains the necessity of a government for punishing those who break the law of society, there is so much to say about it that it hardly can be touched incidentally. The more we study the question, the more we are brought to the conclusion that society is responsible for the anti-social deeds perpetrated in its midst, and that no punishment, no prisons, and no hangmen can diminish the numbers of such deeds; nothing short of a reorganization of society itself..t
hari rat park law et al
need to org around legit needs
Three quarters of all the acts which are brought before our courts every year have their origin, either directly or indirectly, in the present disorganized state of society with regard to the production and distribution of wealth — not in perversity of human nature..t As to the relatively few anti-social deeds which result from anti-social inclinations of seperate individuals, it is not by the prisons, nor even by the resorting to the hangmen, that we can diminish their numbers. By our prisons, we merely multiply them and render them worse. By our detectives, our “price of blood,” our executions, and our jails, we spread in society such a terrible flow of basest passions and habits, that he who should realize the effects of these institutions to their full extent would be frightened by what society is doing under the pretext of maintaining morality. We must search for other remedies, and the remedies have been indicated long since.
Of course now, when a mother in search of food and shelter for her children must pass by shops filled with the most refined delicacies of refined gluttony; when gorgeous and insolent luxury is displayed side by side with the most execrable misery; when the dog and the horse of a rich man are far better cared for than millions of children whose mothers earn a pitiful salary in the pit or manufactory; when each “modest” evening dress of a lady represents eight months, or one year, of human labor; when enrichment at somebody else’s expense is the avowed aim of the “upper classes,” and no distinct boundary can be traced between honest and dishonest means of making money — then force is the only means of maintaining such a state of things. Then an army of policemen, judges, and hangmen becomes a necessary institution.
But if all our children — all children are our children — *received a sound instruction and education — and we have the means of giving it; if every family lived in decent home — and they could at the present high pitch of our production; if every boy and girl were taught a handicraft at the same time as he or she receives scientific instruction, and not to be a manual producer of wealth were considered as a token of inferiority; if men lived in closer contact with one another, and had continually to come into contact on those public affairs which now are vested in the few; and if, in consequence of a closer contact, we were brought to take as lively an interest in our neighbors’ difficulties and pains as we formerly took in those of our kinsfolk — **then we should not resort to policemen and judges, to prisons and executions. Anti-social deeds would be nipped in the bud, not punished. The few contests which would arise would be easily settled by arbitrators; and no more force would be necessary to impose decisions than is required now for enforcing the decisions of the family tribunals of China.
*oh my oh my.. oi oi oi
**not as long as you have any form of m\a\p
And here we are brought to consider a great question: what would become of morality in a society which recognized *no laws and proclaimed the full freedom of the individual?
*doesn’t match up w your ed ness on 16.. oi..
No society is possible without certain principles of morality generally recognized. If everyone grew accustomed to deceiving his fellow-men; if we never could rely on each other’s promise and words; if everyone treated his fellow as an enemy, against whom every means of warfare is justifiable — no society could exist
oi.. let go
The “fittest” in the organic world are those who grow accustomed to life in society; and life in society necessarily implies moral habits. As to mankind, it has during its long existence developed in its midst a nucleus of social habits, of moral habits, which cannot disappear as long as human societies exist.
yeah they can.. and they must.. if we want to be legit free.. we need global detox for all us whales..
Additional Note to “Anarchist Communism”
Kropotkin’s earlier writings as to the methods of organizing production and distribution after a revolutionary seizure of property were based on the assumption that there would be sufficiency of goods for each to take what he needed and to work as much as he felt able. After his experience with the Russian Revolution he came to a *quite contrary conclusion. He recognized the obstacles to production on a new basis as well as the poverty of the capitalist world and expressed his changed opinion in a postscript to the Russian edition of Words of a Rebel, published in 1919. His method for organizing production follows his previous teaching, but his statement of it after the Russian Revolution adds interest to it. (R.N.B.)
*only because not org’d around legit needs
Extract from the Postscript of “Words of a Rebel”
It is certainly impossible to foresee everything. Only the efforts of thousands of intelligences *working on the problems can cooperate in the development of a new social system and find the best solutions for the thousands of local **needs.…
*biggest problem.. wrong focus/problem(s).. **ie: assumed vs legit needs..
The second conclusion to which I came was that the present economic life in civilized countries is constructed on an erroneous basis. The theory is that the peoples of the world are divided into two categories: those who, thanks to their superior education, are qualified to direct production, and the others who, because of their limited capacity, are condemned to labor for their employers. The whole course of political economy declares this theory. It is thus that the English employing class has enriched itself. It is thus that other countries, in developing their industry, are enriching themselves at the expense of the backward peoples. But a more profound study of economic life in England and other European countries leads us to another conclusion. It is no longer possible to become enriched in the same way as England has up to now. Not one civilized country wants to remain in the position of furnishing raw materials. All countries aspire to develop manufacturing industry and they are all gradually doing so…. The road to the development of the welfare of all peoples lies only in the union of agriculture and industry and not in the sub-division of peoples into industrial and agrarian civilizations. Such sub-division will lead inevitably to incessant wars for the capture of markets and cheap labor for industry….
*It follows then that the social revolution, wherever it breaks out, must consider as its first duty the increase of production. **The first months of emancipation will inevitably increase consumption of goods and production will diminish. And, furthermore, any country achieving a social revolution will be surrounded by a ring of neighbors either unfriendly or actually enemies…. ***In a word, a revolution will lead inevitably to increased consumption, for a third of the population of all Europe lives in misery and suffers from a lack of clothes and other goods. The demands upon products will increase while production decreases, and finally famine will come. There is only one way of avoiding it. ****We should understand that as soon as a revolutionary movement begins in any country the only possible way out will consist in the workingmen and peasants from the beginning taking the whole national economy into their hands and organizing it themselves with a view to a rapid increase in production. But they will not be convinced of this necessity except when all responsibility for national economy, today in the hands of a multitude of ministers and committees, is presented in a simple form to each village and city, in every factory and shop, as their own affair, and when they understand that *****they must direct it themselves.
*yeah.. not.. will be less production by far.. if we use the means we have today to first/simultaneous do a global detox/re\set.. otherwise no graeber stop at enough law
**not if we detox/reset in sync
***to me this is so false.. and a huge cancerous distraction.. based on doing it wrong (aka: part\ial ness) in the past.. and not getting out of sea world first.. et al.. we already have more than we need..
****again.. to me wrong.. rather whalespeak.. if 8b legit free.. would be increase (beyond calc) of legit needs.. which would make all other assumed needs/problems become irrelevant (and in abundance where needed)
*****imagine if we ness
- accidental anarchist
- anarchism and other essays
- anarchism or rev movement
- anarchist communism
- anarchist library
- anarchists against democracy
- anarchy after leftism
- anarchy in manner of speaking
- anarchy works
- at the café
- billionaire and anarchists
- david on anarchism ness
- enlightened anarchy
- fragments of an anarchist anthropology
- freedom and anarchy
- graeber anarchism law
- inventing anarchy
- is anarchism impossible
- kevin on anarchism w/o adj
- nika on anarchism
- on anarchism
- post scarcity anarchism
- anarchy in manner of speaking