I think people that submit to employment do it for many reasons and not all of them are rational. Austrian School's flaw (I agree with its mechanics but not some of the long term conclusions drawn from them) is in assuming rationality when dealing with a frequently irrational people.
I guess but its more that whatever people do, even the really dumb things, the reason is one of self-interest. It doesn't rule out irrational behaviour, with totally rational behaviour it would be easier to have equilibrium in the market which is something the austrian say, quite accurately, will never exist. Subjective value implies some level of irrational consumer behaviour since its whatever seemed sensible to them at the time.
Also im not neccessarily against employment if its voluntary, i think there would be an increase in self-employment but it would be coercion to force it on everyone. Whats of primary importance to me is removing the barriers to creativity and entrepeneurship which means knocking down some state monopolies. If people want to be employed then thats fine.
Even under a free market system with many aggressive and rational players, it is possible for one group to use its advantages (like those who live in oil-rich countries, maybe?) to use them to gradually consolidate monopolistic authority in the marketplace, and exploit it, like Rockefeller and the trusts at the beginning of the last century.
Monopolies only exist where their is hardly any supply or demand or its helped by the state. The trusts were no exception. If there was no money monopoly, land monopoly, tarrif monopoly or patent monopoly, among various other things the state does, it would be very difficult for them to ever exist, or survive for long if they did. Remember a monopoly, well any large hierarchical firm really, has the same economic calculation problem as a state socialist system. (an anarcho-socialist system would possibly be different due to decentralisation but meh thats a different debate)
As for oil it will get more expensive so there will be a gap in the power market leading to greener energy sources emerging, ones that can be made anywhere.
In an anarchist world, it would be more difficult to get past public opinion on these issues without a government to ensure order, but those voluntary organizations you were talking about could still become corrupted and use its influence to convince people that high prices or lack of competition is preferable or unavoidable for various reasons. Money would still exist, and money is economic power. It can be used for all sorts of things in this regard.
Yes but that exists now and would be much more difficult to exist under anarchism so i guess thats just life not being perfect. Money is economic power, however you obtain and maintain money through providing people with stuff they want so im not so concerned about it. Besides it would be harder to build up massive business empires without the state.
The voluntary councils or firms you were talking about are a problem. They could become fossilized by tradition or disinterest, which might not be immediately recognized by even a vigilant public. There are lots of dangers here, and peace and prosperity make for an excellent public tranquilizer for the masses. War actually does the same thing, from the opposite direction.
Does this not exist with government? Besides the point of voluntary association is to make life naturally less rigidly structured for even the laziest people.
I'm seeing a faith in individuality that I find extremely admirable, even if it doesn't stand up to my personal research and experiences. If everyone were individualistic in the manner youre describing, then it would indeed be a better world. Maybe one day we'll get there, but it won't exactly be next week, and the unfortunate trend within the greater powers of society is towards polarizing debate and ignoring strong minority opinions. The majority of the viewing public seems to want their news to be simple and split along the "good vs evil" lines. God bless the internet...
I agree it wont be next week. Maybe i just know a very different type of people than you do but i know plenty of people who don't act like this, besides even in the everyday world there's never consensus on opinions. Whats really important is its possible to be an individualist now and hopefully it will become easier in the future, which is good dince the world thrives on individualism. Also you've got to think what factors affect how people think, mainly how they are taught to think here are some interesting articles on the subject.
http://www.americanexperiment.org/publi ... ersten.php
http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles ... 002&page=1
As for the relationship between hierarchy and efficiency, I insist on this because the promise of advancement (and inverse threat of getting fired) is currently the big motivating driver in employee effort for so many corporations, and a "team" atmosphere can be used for manipulation.
Hierarchies could still exist to some extent inside firms, it would nice if we could remove all of them but it would be difficult without coercion. However its simply not true that more hierarchy means more efficiency. Even some capitalist firms have gotten rid of showing their organisation as hierarchical and now use matrix structure which is very decentralised and doesnt show the firm as a whole just the individuals involved in each project, for the reason that promotion to a higher place in a hierarchy often fails as an incentive. Also the firms that survive, even under the current system, ARE the ones which are more decentralised. Also according to i think it was maslow's hierarchy (irony?) of needs having creative control of your work is above promotion and money, in fact its the highest of needs.
Also here are some more problems with the traditional firm and its agency incentives
http://members.tripod.com/kevin_carson/ ... apter6.pdf
Its 41 pages long and i apologise for that but it highlights many major flaws with the current system if you have the time or interest to read it.
I do think power should be decentralized and spread out as much as possible, but the trend towards this in the corporate world is a product mainly of more high-tech businesses with highly skilled workers that demand better treatment. What's unfortunate is that in a country of 300 million people, there is little reason to believe that the market will provide opportunities for so many people, skilled or not, without reverting back to a situation where there is far more supply of labor than demand, which can increase exploitation. Loose hierarchies and decentralization may work better, but opportunities to abuse employees will abound with so many of them desperate to work. Fair treatment of employees is wonderful (remember Henry Ford and the efficiency wage?) but lowering labor costs will always be attractive to businessmen. They want profits, and money is power. Today's hierarchies are geared towards finance for a reason.
Todays corporate system fails for many reasons. The market will mean growth which will mean more jobs will become available. With less unemployment employees will have more power in the employee-employer relationship since there will be less people to take their place. Also workers unions would probably have more power if they weren't organised the way the state wants them to be. Currently you have to go through lots of bureacracy and organise in a certain way instead of just unionising with your fellow employees. Finally competiton in the labour market would reduce exploitation. The fact is decentralisation, loose hierarchies and motivated workers is the efficient model even today. Yes there may be a class of capitalist bastards at the top but if they want to stay there long they will have to be less of a capitalist bastard, todays hierarchies = fail. Unless they're in bed with the state of course.....
That first part about "tell people not to do x..." is gold. Its rebelliousness, and I LOVE rebelliousness. Its what keeps the system evolving and in check. Just remember that people rebel against... authority. I think that, until humanity crosses an evolutionary boundary, people like to rail against the system, any system. If that system is anarchy, they will rebel against it with order. That may sound odd, but fascist movements in the past give a historical precedent.
Nah fascist movements, like many state-collectivist movements, arise in times of crisis which is one of the reasons why i think a successful society will hopefully lead to more individualism. Anarchism is built meant to be a spontaneous order, an order when if a person is resentful of something they switch associations. Rebelliousness (individualism?) in anarchism will exist but it will lead to different voluntary associations. Thats the whole point of anarchy really, a more fluid society.
There is a necessity for trust in society, and when we all become trustworthy, then the problems of power and rank and coercion and all that will be obsolete. This necessitates acceptance of individuality on a cultural level that spans generations and creates new ways for people to deal with conflicts of interest, but until the need for this becomes obvious to broader society, then we'll have to wait for it and encourage individuality and understanding within our current framework. I'm sure I'm forgetting something in this argument, but we'll see what comes of it.
There's a lot of truth in this. It why i say evolution over revolution. Fix some of the things that encourage uniformity now then start progressing to more and more voluntary association as opposed to coercive association. It doesnt require altruism or improving human nature, it requires accepting it and nurturing the good stuff as opposed to repressing the bad stuff.
The creative and individualistic elements of humanity continue to give me hope, too... I wish more people showed signs of genuine creativity. Again, God bless the internet.
Individualism makes the world go round. I get frustrated with people yet they're my biggest source of inspiration. It seems were not as different as i expected.
I guess the best someone can do for now is start with themself and the people around them.
I am confident in people's potential though if we started genuinly changing the way we live.
One bit as a time.