Alan Moore on Anarchy

Comics writer Alan Moore calls himself an anarchist, which makes him sound rather radical. But I was curious what his definition of anarchy was so I looked it up and found some good sources. This quote from his Wikipedia bio is great:

“I believe that all other political states are in fact variations or outgrowths of a basic state of anarchy; after all, when you mention the idea of anarchy to most people they will tell you what a bad idea it is because the biggest gang would just take over. Which is pretty much how I see contemporary society. We live in a badly developed anarchist situation in which the biggest gang has taken over and have declared that it is not an anarchist situation – that it is a capitalist or a communist situation. But I tend to think that anarchy is the most natural form of politics for a human being to actually practice.”

In this interview he expounds on his views further.

Here’s a video clip where he discusses it a little.

Where I disagree with him is his idea of anarchy. Anarchy is well defined as a lack of a governing body. Once any gang, tribe, junta or state takes over it ceases to be anarchy. And under Alan’s definition, that we need some kind of “administrator” (which I agree with), this is a form of government. I agree that the only real answer to a free society or world is a form of anarchy as he defines it, eg: with an administrative body. Everyone is their own boss, and an administrative body maintains a sense of order, and manages resources so we can all equitably access what we need.

However, this is not anarchy. This is a limited form of government, where the government is prevented from growing powerful. Arguably, this is what the founders of the US were attempting to do, slavery aside, but it has since been corrupted to the point where this is no longer the case.

So, I would love to talk to him further about this, if I can get him to do a podcast. But it seems from what I have read that he shares a similar view to myself that all governments should be limited in power and that most of the world’s problems are created by a tiny minority of people. The world’s economic mess is caused by the mismanagement of the people’s money by the states themselves and their mismanagement of the resources that occur.

But where I seem to disagree with Alan is the actual idea of how a fair system would work. There will always be two and only two kinds of “government”. What I define as Statist and Non-Statist. Non statist being similar to what he described as anarchy with a administrative body. That is a society where a social contract keeps some form of order. All other forms of the state are Statist. They seek to make a powerful state that rules us all and no matter what the intentions of statists may be, what they create devolves over time into tyranny. The labels they give it are irrelevant: fascist, communist, socialist, progressive…its all the same thing. Believe it or not, even those states we view as evil is someones idea of a utopia. But all such societies, whether they be the Roman Empire, the Mayans, British Empire, they all fall under the weight of human nature. Human nature effects all human endeavor and all states will become tyrannical over time due to the inertia of their own mass. It’s like one of the laws of Thermodynamics. Immutable.

Still, he has some very interesting points that people should think about. No government is really fair or equitable and the more any politician claims to care about virtue or fairness the less we should trust them. Because such things don’t truly exists where the state is concerned. All intentions aside.

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