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And, yes, I DO take it personally: Perhaps "anarchy" has gotten a bad rap
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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Perhaps "anarchy" has gotten a bad rap

in this article from alternet by david morris, originally posted in on the commons, anarchy, as defined by petr kropotkin, is equated to cooperation and collaboration...

Kropotkin honored Darwin’s insights about natural selection but believed the governing principle of natural selection was cooperation, not competition. The fittest were those who cooperated.

“The animal species, in which individual struggle has been reduced to its narrowest limits, and the practice of mutual aid has attained the greatest development, are invariably the most numerous, the most prosperous, and the most open to further progress. … The unsociable species, on the contrary, are doomed to decay.”

He spent the rest of his life promoting that concept and the theory of social structure known as anarchism. To Americans anarchism is synonymous with a lack of order. But to Kropotkin anarchist societies don’t lack order but the order emerges from rules designed by those who feel their impact, rules that encourage humanly scaled production systems and maximize individual freedom and social cohesion.

In his article on Anarchy in the 1910 Encyclopedia Britannica Kropotkin defines anarchism as a society “without government – harmony in such a society being obtained, not by submission to law, or by obedience to any authority, but by free agreements concluded between the various groups, territorial and professional, freely constituted for the sake of production and consumption…”

in my opinion, the term "self-organizing systems" is not only more descriptive but also a great deal more palatable than "anarchy"... the concept of self-organizing systems is a well-studied element of complex adaptive systems that has emerged from research done by the santa fe institute... the concept began with chaos theory and complexity theory and has since been applied to many systems - economic, social, organizational, mathematical, physical, etc. - with great validity... it also totally supports the collaborative and cooperative fundamentals revealed in kropotkin's research...

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