Being an Anarchist is in no way convenient and it is not something most people start out as or become overnight. That being said, it is often difficult to have useful conversations about Anarchy with a non-Anarchist in a short period of time.
Additionally, it is difficult to progress in these conversations due to many factors including: stigmas surrounding Anarchism; common misunderstandings; and, the lack of knowledge of the premises of Anarchism. Thus, the Ask the Anarchist (ATA) Podcast serves as an ongoing conversation about Anarchy and attempts to answer the many questions and concerns a non-Anarchist may have whilst clearing up any stigmas and misunderstandings.
• We live in an objective reality (if it is subjective we can’t even have this conversation).
• The center of that reality is the individual, because the individual is a conscious being (the only known conscious being) capable of rational thought. Thus, the individual is the lowest common denominator of any group in which they can be a member.
• Action axiom: Since human beings are the only conscious beings capable of rational thought, only human beings act with conceptual intentions; and since individuals are the lowest common denominator of human beings, only individuals can act.
• Natural Rights: Individuals own themselves (the sole discretion to use and destroy one’s self).
• Natural Rights: Because individuals own themselves, they own their labor and anything gained through the voluntary exchange of their labor.
• Natural Rights: Property can also be established, as in the case of land, initially through the homesteading principle, aka the principle of first claim and use.
• Natural Rights: Because individuals own themselves and their property, any violation of the person or property of an individual is an unjust (and thus unlawful) act.
• Non-aggression principle: This principle undergirds the philosophy of liberty and is essential for peaceful human existence. It asserts that the initiation of force (aggression) is illegitimate and a violation of individual freedom. Simply put, "Don’t hit people and don’t take their stuff."
• The human condition is twofold, first a psychological condition, and then an economic condition. Psychologically, every action (purposeful human behavior) ought to be done in the self-interest of the individual in service of their needs. The economic condition is the fact of resource scarcity which can lead to conflict.
Brief Expansion on the Premises and Some Definitions:
What is Anarchy? Anarchy is from the Greek meaning "without ruler."
Ruler- A person who exercises dominion or controlling powers over others (without their consent).
Government- An individual or group of individuals who employ organized power to enforce and control a coercive monopoly on purported security, a legal system, social management, and the people within a certain geographical area.
Therefore, Anarchy is basically the absence of domination and control of individuals, enabling them to make their own choices with their own property and trade values with others. That is not to say society will be completely free from those who would try to dominate and control others; rather, rulers and ruling will no longer be viewed as legitimate or necessary to ensure survival and meet various needs. "Anarchy is the radical notion that other people are not your property."
Additionally, Anarchy is not a utopian concept, some unattainable ideal. Anarchy means a community or society possessing a socio-political legal system of justice. The concept of anarchy entails individuals being free to make their own choices in a voluntary marketplace, and so, just like today, the justice system will reflect their values and virtues. The primary difference from today will be that the non-aggression principle will be commonly held and applied universally.
How property is acquired: From the concept of self-ownership, a person has the sole right to use, benefit from, transfer, exclude others from and destroy their own body and mind. Thus, a person has the sole right not only to their physical body (person) but also to its use (labor). Thus, any benefit from their labor (e.g., medium of exchange (money)) or material object (e.g., land, clothes, or shelter) is the sole property of the individual. Thus, any claim to or interference with the person or property of an individual by anyone other than the individual (owner) is an illegitimate claim, an unjust action, and a violation of individual rights. Thus, this natural condition of self-ownership can be said to be a natural right. And law exists only to protect owners and property and ensure that equitable restitution and reparations are granted, i.e., that victims of rights-violations are made whole.
Land and resources are initially acquired through first use. Thus, ownership of a previously unowned natural object can be established by purposefully employing (using) one’s labor with the natural object.
Why is social administration of "law" needed? To make publicly known the consequences of injury to persons and property and ensure the protection of property rights. Conflicts of course can arise from tragic expressions of unmet needs and due to scarcity. Enactment of natural law principles within a voluntary society enable conflict to be greatly curtailed and in most cases resolved entirely.
Owner- The one who has the sole right to use, benefit from, transfer, exclude others from, and destroy his or her property.
Property- Anything an owner has the sole right to use, benefit from, transfer, exclude others from, and destroy (relationship of the people to scarce objects and routes of action).
(Natural) Rights- Inalienable, self-evident, and universal freedoms not contingent upon the legal system, customs, or beliefs of any particular culture, society, or government.
(Natural) Law- Rule or guideline reflecting the principle of individual sovereignty and property rights, designed to protect the person and property of an individual, e.g., laws against taxation, non-agency regulation, and fiat currency.
Unlaw- Any rule or guideline that benefits one individual at the expense of another, e.g., taxation, legalized slavery, and all victimless ‘crimes.’
Selected Influences with a Recommended Work:
Philosophy and Political Philosophy
Ayn Rand- Philosophy Who Needs It?
Stefan Molyneux- On Truth: The Tyranny of Illusion
Wes Bertrand- Complete Liberty
Ludwig Von Mises- Theory and History
Murray Rothbard- For a New Liberty
Hans Hoppe- The Economics and Ethics of Private Property
Nathaniel Branden- The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem
Marshal Rosenberg- Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life
Alfie Kohn- Unconditional Parenting: Moving from Rewards and Punishments to Love and Reason