That my face ^^^
I recently updated my About Me page to include a longer form explanation of my ethics and political foundation (and a link to my bandcamp….). These do not explain every niche of what I believe, but gives a solid overview of my foundations. The things I write will make more sense with these tenets in mind.
I’m opposed to coercion and value consent. Consent cannot exist where there is power over. Of course in real life, perfect consent being impossible, we do the best we can to minimize harm and transcend the infinite recursions.
I believe in pursuing positive freedom beyond negative freedom. Maximize degrees of freedom of all beings to maximize consent and thus complexity. Complexity is the engine of sustainability and development which helps to better solve the problems created by inefficiency, scarcity, and exploitation. I’m anti intellectual property in the same way that I’m pro development of complexity and decentralization. I’m a horizontalist in the Carsonian sense of the importance of information sharing as a means of efficiency and an ethical imperative against domination.
I measure and recognize increases in degrees of freedom through a subtle consequentialism. In my understanding, suffering imposed on an individual is exponentially weighed against its justification on a quantitative scale (suffering is calculated and important in determining the scales). This means that freedom for all cannot be justified by slavery of some. There are some hardline virtue ethics in there (such as no slavery for instance– liberation not subordination for inequity problems) but also, consequentialism is the main node around which they all orbit. So if killing one person meant saving the human race, I wouldn’t even hesitate.
I am an individualist but not to the detriment of cooperation. Rather I am an individualist because there can be no consent without (complex) recognition of the individual, and without that consent, cooperation is increasingly impossible. I value cooperative game theoretic solutions and yet simultaneously value competition when it is removed from coercion. Competition without structural imbalances and exploitation is itself a coordination strategy. Playing a competitive board game with your friends or having multiple yard sales on your street is not the reason for the downfall of human cooperation. If anything you all get more shoppers bc of the diversity of yard sales. I also don’t think the individual exists in a perfectly discrete form, but that there are clear information flow obstacles that warrant recognition between sentient nodes.
Fuck structural obstacles to information flow. I want the capacity for high level direct communication through technology. That’s part of why I love the internet and the alternative possibilities for its infrastructure, interface, and deployment.
My anarchism strives to be both practical/immediate/tangible and wholly audacious/impossible/unprecedented. Anarchism is a fight for infinity that also works for direct action solutions to the problems we presently face. My anarchism is a process not an ends although I do have directions or measuring metrics in mind. I believe that we can leverage strategic points of weakness and strength to maximize impact rather than focusing on wasteful, inefficient time sucks and low impact spectacles. I’m definitely post-left in a sense (i’m critical of the movement of social capital and of the ‘one big movement’ approach) but at the same time think it’s no coincidence that the post-left and individualist anarchism writ-large has been infested by nazis.
Individualism not tempered by a deep-seated love and empathy is a form of sociopathy. I support people building the one big movement just like I often stand behind reformists and liberals on certain issues. It’s just not the avenue I see as being most impactful or aiming most directly for the roots.
Many people are confused about how I can seemingly value both markets and be strictly anti-capitalist. I’m often between Gillis and Carson economically but I’ve read pretty widely (from hayek to marx). I am, in a sense, a left-market anarchist although differ pretty strictly from many left-libertarians in my understandings of what constitutes violence or self-defense particularly around things like anti-fascism, reappropriation or anti-corporate sabotage, and insurrection in general : ) My defense of markets is fundamentally anti-monopoly and opposed to coercion through subsidized runaway accumulation. That is, I am anti-statist but not in the inane way of vulgar free trade enthusiasts who would replace inefficient government oversight with unaccountable multinational corporate “liberty” to exploit. I am anti-statist in the sense of collective bargaining and agreements and the Charles Johnson notion that we are all market-forces. I just expand that to include certain forms of well… sabotage, as well as parallel constructions such as provided for by the models of Zapatistas, Agorists, etc.
I am pretty wholeheartedly anti-communist but I am quite socialist in my intentions. I’m a pretty socialist ends, market means kind of gal. I support basic human rights of access to livelihood and thriving (food, healthcare, etc are all aspects of degrees of freedom maximization). My view of ancoms is that their vision of society is largely one where social capital replaces currency and their coordination problems eventually devolve into informal currency markets and wholly decentralized economies (as we’ve seen in every example that tried to scale up)… so basically a left-market-anarchism with intricate collectives. Which is somewhere near where I stand (I resonate with mutualism) except that ultimately I’m far more interested in stigmergic networks than unions or collectives. I support many syndicalists and like Bookchinian Confederalists, etc but think the same rules apply (Rojava uses currency my dudes). I value labor struggle and collectivization even though I personally have very little desire to be in most unions or collectives as of present conditions. I would rather build deep trusting working relationships contingent upon ongoing consent negotiations. But basically though, most anarchist groups, even if I disagree, have a vision of society that is way better than the current one. Even left-coms, if given their utopia, I think it would be way better than what we have now. My vision just strives for something farther along the utopistic horizon, and also more firmly grounded in our knowledge of humans as not being naturally super cooperative. But most MLs can just hek right off. ok?
I believe that rights have both natural and socially constructed qualities. I’m not a proper philosopher so i don’t know what that’s called. But basically I’m of the mind, that even if nihilism were true, it would still be worthwhile to attempt ceaselessly to storm the gates of heaven. I value development over subsistence. For example, just surviving is not my goal for the human race. I want to interact and exchange peacefully with the universe. To me, it’s not enough to just live. To just live is it’s own embrace of death to me and I don’t want even death to have the power to violate consent. I think the anomaly of human consciousness is a precious gift of circumstance not to be wasted on collective stagnation. That being said, practically speaking, survival is all most of us have available as a result of poor coordination strategies at a macro level. As well, I do not value animal consciousness at zero or at quite the same level as human consciousness. The math is squishy and difficult. The trolley problems are act-consequential with the knowledge that we can only know so much about second and third ripple impact.
I want to save the entire world and the universe and make them better places for everyone. Not in the sense that I think that I’m so special, but rather that I think everyone should, to the best of their ability feel the same way, and that we should be testing all the good ideas. I’m not talking about white-saviourism. I’m talking about collective and individualized investment in interdependent liberation through technical, political, ideological, ecological, and social solutions.
Folks may have noticed but I’m pretty deeply anti-fascist because I think fascism has unique memetic qualities that make it dangerous to freedom (more on this soon……).
I’m an atheist (unless the universe is a sweet quantum-computer i guess..) and a scientist in the sense of searching for roots not in the sense of whatever this bullshit capitalism has spawned and calls science. I believe in rationality in the sense of valuing and prioritizing information based on its correctness and of overcoming faulty biases and poor evolutionary ticks. I am not a rationalist in the sense of a patriarchal assumption of certainty or rejection of emotion. I believe that rationality is deeply entwined with the recognition of limits in ones ability to know. I’m Bayesian in the sense of my relation to probabilities and updating.
Morphological freedom is at the root of much of my transhumanism. I’m queer, trans, and sober as aspects of choice and wiring but these impact my decisions and culture dramatically. I think drugs are awesome (mostly) I’m just rulll bad at them. I’m also poly which impacts my values around relationships and what even constitutes attraction or connection. I’m a hacker (I guess??) but i strive to use my skills for good. In life I try to maintain networks of accountability to point out my blind-spots (i don’t know the perfect anti-ableist way to say that thing) when I fall short of my potential (somewhat-often).
I believe in solidarity and accomplices not allyship and to me that is a kind of love.
I oscillate around a complex notion of love and empathy that is globalized, anti-tribalist, supportive, challenging, both intellectual and emotional, and grasps forever at our intimate and intricate complexity and struggles and wrestles with our sloppy grit.