from The New Encyclopedia of Social Reform
[Source: The New Encyclopedia of Social Reform (1908).]
ANARCHISM (Gr. av, privative., and a government), the social doctrine of the abolition of government of man by man, and the constitution of society without government.
Under this general definition of anarchism there are, however, two schools of anarchists, so totally distinct and even opposed in their doctrines, their methods, and general characteristics, that we must consider them separately and distinguish between them at every point. The two schools are those of the individualist anarchists (often called in this country philosophical anarchists), and, secondly, the school of anarchist communists. The individualist anarchists, though perhaps the fewer in number, are, in this country especially, the abler body of thinkers, and carry out to their fullest logical results the principles which a great many individualists accept but do not fully carry out. Individualist anarchists do not believe in the use of force not because they hold that it is wrong to use it, but simply because they are aware that the use of force never truly liberates, while their aim is absolute liberty their motto being "Liberty, not the daughter, but the mother of order." They start from the philosophy of individual sovereignty, and apply it to the problems of social science with relentless logic. While by no means objecting to organization and cooperation, provided it be voluntary, they would have all organization spring from the individual.
Anarchist communists, on the other hand, form a wholly different school of thought. They do not believe in government, and they do believe in overthrowing it by force. On its ruins they would plant a communal life, whose ideal is very little different from that of the socialists, except that it is not to be realized through the State. Most of the men who are called anarchists in the press, particularly of Europe, and almost all the bomb-throwers and dynamiters of recent years on either continent have been anarchist communists. The school is mainly European, as individualist anarchism is mainly American. Anarchist-communism counts among its followers names favorably known to science and letters, such as Krapotkin and Reclus, while many, even of the dynamitards, have been men of education and sometimes refinement. Nevertheless, it is mainly a movement among the working classes, particularly of France, Italy, Spain, and, to a less extent, Germany and Austria. In England there are but few anarchist communists. In America they are found only in a few cities. The so-called Chicago anarchists were anarchist communists. Individualist anarchism, on the other hand, is not a class movement, but almost purely intellectual, naturally drawing its strength largely from the classes possessed to-day of intellectual advantages. It will thus be seen that in philosophy, method, and general characteristics the two classes of anarchists are carefully to be distinguished. Both are distinctly revolutionary and opposed to the State; but the one starts from the individual, and advocates a revolution through ideas; the other starts from the community, and advocates a revolution through force. We print a statement of individualist anarchism by Victor Yarros, one of its foremost American representatives; and a statement of anarchist communism, by Pierre Krapotkin, perhaps its most distinguished representative. Says Mr. Yarros:
1. INDIVIDUALIST OR PHILOSOPHICAL ANARCHISM.
The individualistic or philosophical anarchists favor the abolition of " the State" and government of man by man. They seek to bring about a state of perfect freedom of an
_. .. archy. To comprehend the precise e nition j[ m p or j. o f t^is statement it is essen
an a e^ a j ^ Q g ras p an( j bear in mind the en ' definitions given by the anarchists to the terms employed in their expositions. The current misconceptions of the anarchistic doctrines are chiefly due to the persistent, though largely unconscious, habit of interpreting them in the light of the popular definitions of the terms " State," "government," etc., instead of in the light of their own technical use of these terms. The average man, on being told that the anarchist would abolish all governmental restraints, not unnaturally concludes that the proposition involves the removal of the restrictions upon criminal conduct, the relinquishment of organized defense of life, liberty, and property. Those who are familiar with the doctrine of non-resistance to evil, preached by the early Christians and by the modern Tolstoians, generally identify anarchism with it. But such interpretations are without any foundation. The anarchists are emphatically in favor of resistance to and organized protection against crime and aggression of every kind; it is not greater freedom for the criminal,' but greater freedom for the non-criminal, that they aim to secure; and by the abolition of government they mean the removal of restrictions upon conduct intrinsically ethical and legitimate, but which ignorant legislation has interdicted as criminal. The anarchistic principle of personal liberty is absolutely coincident with the famous Spencerian "first principle of human happiness," the principle of "equal freedom," which Mr. Spencer has expressed in the formula, " Every man is free to do what he wills, provided he infringes not the equal freedom of any other man." It is, in fact, precisely because the anarchist accepts this principle without reservation, and insists on the suppression and elimination of all aggression or invasion all conduct incompatible with equality of liberty that he declares war upon the "State" and "government." He defines "State" as "the embodiment of the principle of invasion in an individual or band of individuals, assuming to act as representatives or masters of the entire people within a given area." Government he defines as '"the subjection of the non-invasive individual to an external will;" and "invasion" as conduct violative of equal freedom.
Perhaps the clearest way of stating the political program of the anarchists will be to indicate its relation to other better known theories of government. The anarchists, agreeing with the view of the true Jeffersonian Democrats, that the Program. best government is that which governs least, sympathizing with the position of the old Manchester individualists and laissez-fatre-ists, who believed in a minimum of government interference, as well as with the less vague doctrines of the more radical modern individualists of the Spencerian school, who would limit the State to the sole function of protecting men against external and internal invaders, go a step farther and demand the dissolution of what remains of "government" viz., compulsory taxation and compulsory military service. It is no more necessary, contend the anarchists, that government should assume the protective military and police functions, and compel men to accept its services, than it is that government should meddle with production, trade, banking, education, and other lines of human activity. By voluntary organization and voluntary taxation it is perfectly possible to protect liberty and property and to restrain crime. It is doubtless easy to imagine a society in which government concerns itself with nothing save preservation of order and punishment of crime, in which there are no public schools supported by compulsory taxation, no government interference with the issue of currency and banking, no custom-houses or duties on foreign imports, no government postal service, no censorship of literature and the stage, no attempt to enforce Sunday laws, etc. The laissez-faire-ists of the various schools have familiarized the thinking public with such a type of social organization. Now, the anarchists propose to do away with the compulsory feature of the single function reserved for government by the radical laissez-faire-ists. In other words, they insist on the right of the non-aggressive individual to "ignore the State," to dispense with the protective services of the defensive organization and remain outside of it. This would not prevent those who might desire systematic and organized protection from combining to maintain a defensive institution, but such an institution would not be a government, since no one would be compelled to join it and pay toward its support. Anarchy, therefore, may be defined as a state of society in which the non-invasive individual is not coerced into cooperation for the defense of his neighbors, and in which each enjoys the highest degree of liberty compatible with equality of liberty.
With regard to the question of putting down aggression, the jurisdiction of the voluntary defensive organization would of course extend to outsiders, and not be limited by its membership. The criminal are not to secure immunity by declining to join defensive associations. As the freedom of each is to be bounded by the equal freedom of all, the invader would be liable to punishment under anarchism no less than under government. Criminals would still be tried by juries and punished by executive officers. They would not be allowed to set up ethical standards for themselves and to do what is right in their own eyes. Such a doctrine involves not the abolition of government, but the widest possible extension of it. It repudiates all ethical principles and abandons all attempts at enforcing justice and protecting rights. Every man is allowed under it to govern his fellows, if he has the will and the power, and the struggle for existence in the simplest and crudest form is revived. Anarchism, on the other hand, posits the principle of equal liberty as binding upon all, and only insists that those who refrain from violating it should not be interfered with in any way, either by individual governors or combinations of would-be rulers.
Anarchists reject governmentalism because they find no ethical warrant and no practical necessity for it. It appears to them self-evident that society, or the community, can have no greater claims upon the individual than the component members of it have. The metaphysical Anarchism, and misleading analogies between society and organism, upon which is usually founded the governmentalist's theory of the prerogatives of the State, anarchists reject with undisguised contempt. "The community," or "the State," is an abstraction, and an abstraction has neither rights nor duties. Individuals, and individuals only, have rights. This proposition is the corner-stone of the anarchistic doctrine, and those who accept it are bound to go the full length of anarchism. For if the community cannot rightfully compel a man to do or refrain from doing that which private and individual members thereof cannot legitimately force him to do or forego, then compulsory taxation and compulsory cooperation for any purpose whatever are wrong in principle, and government is merely another name for aggression. It will not be pretended that one private individual has the right to tax another private individual without his consent; how, then, does the majority of the members of a community obtain the right to tax the minority without its consent? Having outgrown the dogma of the divine right of kings, democratic countries are unconsciously erecting the dogma of the Government divine right of majorities to rule. Aggression. The absurdity of such a belief is apparent. Majorities, minorities, and any other combinations of individuals are entitled to insist on respect of their rights, but not on violating the rights of others. There is one ethical standard, not two; and it cannot be right for government to do that which would be criminal, immoral, when committed by individuals. Laws of social life are not made at the polls or in legislative assemblies; they have to be discovered in the same way in which laws of other sciences are discovered. Once discovered, majorities are bound to observe them no less than individuals.
As already stated, the anarchists hold that the law of equal freedom, formulated positively by Spencer and negatively by Kant, is a scientific social law which ought to guide men in their various activities and mutual relations. The logical deductions or corollaries of this law show us at once our rights and our duties. Government violates this great law not only by the fact of its very existence, but in a thousand other ways. Government means the coercion of the non-invasive, the taxation of those who protest against being forced to join the political organization set up by the majority. It enacts statutes and imposes restraints which find no sanction in the law of equal freedom, and punishes men for disobeying such arbitrary provisions. It is true that governments profess to have the public welfare in view, and to enforce nothing save what morality and justice dictate. Justice, however, is invariably confounded by governments with legalism, and by the enforcement of justice they often mean the enforcement of the very laws which they enact in violation of justice. Thus laws in restraint of trade and of exchange are enforced in the name of justice, whereas justice demands the fullest freedom of trade and exchange. Strictly speaking, the enforcement of justice cannot be undertaken by government at all, since a government that should attempt to enforce justice would have to begin by signing its own death-warrant. A government that would enforce equal freedom and let the inoffensive alone would be, not a government, but a voluntary association for the protection of rights.
In republican countries men loosely speak of their "free government," their "government by consent." In reality there is no such thing as government by consent. Majorities rule, and the minorities are forced to acquiesce.
The principle of consent is clearly fatal to governmentalism, for it implies the right of the non-invasive to ignore the State and decline to accept its services. Ethically a man has a perfect right to do this, for the mere refusal to join the political organization (which is merely an insurance association) is not a breach of the principle of equal freedom. Our "free governments" deny this right, hence they are immoral. They cannot become moral except by ceasing to be governments and becoming purely voluntary associations for defense.
Apart from the question of compulsory taxation and compulsory military service, on the abolition of which anarchists alone lay stress (although they readily admit that the police functions of government will be the last to disappear), there is little, if any, difference between anarchists and Spencerian individualists on the question of government interference. The cessation of such interference with economic relations with the issue of money, banking, wages, trade, production, etc. is advocated on the ground that the solution of the social problems is to be found in liberty rather than in regulation, in free competition rather than in State monopoly. On the subject of public education, postal service, poor laws, sanitary supervision, etc., anarchists, in common with advanced individualists, hold that government interference is as pernicious practically as it is unwarranted ethically. Corruption and inefficiency are evils inseparable from government management, and there is nothing which government does that could not be done better by private enterprise under free competition.
In short, the anarchists object to governmentalism because it is unethical, as well as unnecessary and inexpedient. Government is either the will of one man or the will of a number of men, large or small. Now, the will of one or many is not a criterion of right and justice, while for the adjustment of the conflicting interests of the members of society such a criterion is an absolute necessity. Majority rule, and even the rule of a despot, may be, under certain conditions, preferable to a state of civil chaos; but as men advance and study the facts of their own development, they begin to realize the truth that there is no relation whatever between right and numbers, justice and force. Majority rule is discredited along
Majority with despotic rule, and ethical sciEule ence becomes the sole guide and Discredited, authority. The social laws require to be applied and enforced as long as predatory instincts and invasive tendencies continue to manifest themselves in human relations, and this necessitates the maintenance of associations for the protection of freedom and the punishment of aggression. But the governmental method is not adapted to the promotion of this end. Government begins by coercing the non-invasive individual into cooperation for defense and offense, regardless of the fact that a benevolent despotism is not a whit more defensible than a selfish despotism.
In general, it may be stated that any methods not in themselves invasive are regarded as legitimate by the anarchists in the furtherance of their cause. But they rely chiefly, if not entirely, on the methods of education theoretical propaganda of their views and of passive resistance to government. In violence, so-called propaganda by deed and subterranean plotting against existing institutions, they do not believe. Methods. Political changes may be brought about by revolutions, and possibly also such economic changes as are contemplated by the State socialists. But freedom can rest only on ideas and sentiments favorable to it, and revolutionary demonstrations can never abolish ignorance and the spirit of tyranny. Freedom cannot be forced on those who are not fit for it. The emancipation of the people from the aggression of government must come through their own deliberate choice and effort. Anarchists can but disseminate true political teachings and expose the nature and essence of governmentalism. Anarchists, however, do not elieve that it is necessary to convert the whole people in order to carry their principles into practice. A strong and determined minority could, while remaining passive, successfully resist the attempt of government to tax them and otherwise impose its will upon them. Public opinion would not approve of a government campaign of violence against a number of intelligent and perfectly honest individuals banded together for the sole purpose of carrying on their legitimate activities and asserting their right to ignore injunctions and prohibitions having no authority from an ethical point of view. Even if anarchists believed in the use of violent methods, and if they thought that violent resistance to government would hasten their emancipation, they would certainly resort to it, since it is not immoral or invasive to use force against invaders there would be one important difference between them and other schools of reformers. Anarchists would not prevent others from living under government side by side with them, while other reformers seek to impose their schemes on the whole community in which they live. Thus the State socialists, in pursuance of their program of State monopoly of capital, -intend to suppress all competition and all rivalry on the part of individual owners of capital. The anarchists, on the other hand, if allowed to remain outside of the governmental organization, would force no one to join them or follow their example. Still, as a matter of fact, anarchists abjure violence even in their own interests, vividly realizing the truth that the progress of justice and freedom is arrested in a state of war. Peace is an essential condition to the spread of rational ideas and the growth of the sentiment of toleration. Appealing as they do to the ideas and feelings of justice, it would be suicidal for anarchists to encourage violence and excite the lowest passions of men by revolutionary tactics.
To reform by ordinary political methods the anarchists are also opposed, at least under present conditions. As they do not seek any new positive legislation, they can expect nothing from politics. They demand the repeal of the legislation which improperly restricts men's freedom of action, and such repeal they cannot secure while being in a minority. Whether they would cooperate with other parties in attempting to carry specific measures of repeal, would depend largely on circumstances. It is to be remembered that, while the anarchists are strenuous in their opposition to every vestige of government, they do not expect to realize their entire program at one stroke. They are prepared for very slow and gradual reform, and would welcome the success of any single libertarian proposal. They would rejoice in the triumph of the free-trade idea, the repeal of the laws perpetuating land monopoly and monetary monopoly, and the abolition of special privileges. If they do not form themselves into a political party for the purpose of attaining one or more of these objects, it is because they can do more by other methods. Moreover, to enter into the political arena is to recognize, by implication, the principle of government. To vote is to coerce or to threaten coercion. Behind the ballot is the bullet of the soldier, ready to force the defeated minority into submission. The voter does not merely assert his right to self-government; he sets up a claim to govern others. The anarchist cannot employ a method which would put him in such a false light.
Thus 'the anarchist is neither a government bomb-thrower nor a revolutionary bomb-thrower. He objects to the use of violence by the government as well as against it. He restricts himself to the method of education and such passive resistance as is exemplified by a refusal to pay taxes or rent or import duties on commodities purchased in foreign countries.
Historical Sketch of Individualist Anarchism.
Philosophical anarchists usually regard Proudhon as the founder of their school of social science; but there were in America, altho far less widely known, men entertaining anarchistic views before Proudhon's time. We will, therefore, first notice the anarchist movement in America, and then consider it in other countries. America, or at least the United States, with its early extreme individualism and fear of the State (see CENTRALIZATION), was the fitting birthplace of anarchistic thought.
Josiah Warren, a plain and only moderately educated New Englander, but of unusually independent and earnest spirit, was probably the first to enunciate precise anarchistic conceptions. He had become interested in the social views and plans of Robert Owen (q.v.), at this time first taking root iii the land; had Warren. joined the Owenite community at New Harmony; had carefully studied its principles and mused upon its failure, till finally, about 1828, he reached the conclusion that its principles were exactly the opposite of the true ones, and that, instead of the communistic idea of each working for all, as Owen taught, the true way to produce order, harmony, and well-being, was for each to live, in his own way, absolutely untrammeled by others, so far as he did not intrude upon the similar privileges of others. His thoughts took especially a financial turn, and he came to the conclusion that cost was the true limit of price; that usury and profit in all their forms were, therefore, economically wrong, and, moreover, that they would disappear under perfectly free competition. He sought to put his ideas into practice, to actually test them before giving them to the world, and therefore started, and for two years successfully carried on, a store in Cincinnati, where cost was the limit of price, and where usury and profit were eliminated. Finding that he was doing a business of $150,000 a year a large amount for Cincinnati in those days he was convinced of the practicality and correctness of his idea, and therefore closed his business to devote his lite to the propagation of his ideas. His main writings were True Civilization, a short work, first published in 1846, and Equitable Commerce, in which he elaborated his ideas of cost as the limit of price. These books found at least a few thoughtful readers. Stephen Pearl Andrews declared at a later day that the True Civilization was the text and basis of all his own writings, and John Stuart Mill refers to Warren with expressions of deepest interest and respect.
Others, however, were thinking in the same line. Lysander Spooner, who has but recently passed away, may be called the Nestor of anarchism, of the extreme individualistic school. Commencing public life as a young lawyer in Worcester, Mass., he first showed strong Other analytic and argumentative powers in Americana several pamphlets defending Deism against Christianity, but soon passed more and more into sociological studies and controversyj coming to hold and defend extreme views as to individual sovereignty and the tyranny of the State. As early as 1844 he established a private mail between Boston and New York, and later extended it to Philadelphia and Baltimore, achieving success, until at last compelled to stop, owing to petty and constant persecution and annoyance from the Government. From that time he devoted his great abilities to the promulgation of his ideas. During the anti-slavery contest he did good work as an abolitionist, and incorporated his views in The Unconstitutionality of Slavery. His legal acumen appears in his Trial by Jury, in which he reverts to the early and true meaning of the phrase a trial by one's peers; and protests against the absurd and monstrous system (as he claims it to be) of ignorance and injustice now passing under that name. How far he carried his ideas appears in an unsigned monograph from his pen, entitled Revolution.
Stephen Pearl Andrews was a disciple of Warren. As Warren especially studied economic questions, so Andrews studied the family and marriage. His Science of Society, published in 1850, is still considered by philosophical anarchists a classic on the subject. Warren himself declared it a better statement of his own ideas than he himself could write. (For further account, see ANDREWS.)
We now first come to the influence of Proudhon in America, Colonel William B. Greene, of Boston, being the first in this country known to have declared himself a follower of the great Frenchman. Colonel Greene's book on Mutual Banking is one of the most acute and searching inquiries into the monetary problems to be found in the literature of the subject. Colonel Greene was a keen, logicial thinker and a profound scholar. He was a remarkably witty speaker and writer, and his book, entitled Socialistic, Communistic, Mutualistic, and Financial Fragments, shows his power and versatility. E. H. Heywood, a writer on various subjects, was another disciple of Warren. He is the author of a number of very able pamphlets. Charles T. Fowler, also a disciple of Warren, was a Unitarian minister when he first fell under the influence of Warren. He studied Proudhon, and after leaving the church, devoted himself to the propaganda of anarchistic doctrines. He died a few years ago, leaving an admirable series of pamphlets on social and economic problems.
These men, however, while holding essentially anarchist views, and contributing, severally, to the development of anarchism in the United States, did not adopt the name anarchist, and did not really start the movement which has taken such definite shape under that distinctive denomination. The man who, assimilating and profiting by the teachings of Proudhon, Warren, Greene, and the American and English individualists, formulated a consistent and comprehensive anarchistic philosophy, and started the practical anarchistic movement, is Benjamin R. Tucker, the editor of Liberty, the organ of anarchism. Mr. Tucker was a young man, a student of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, when he, becoming interested in social reform, sought the acquaintance of Warren and Greene. The latter called his attention to Proudhon's What is Property? and so impressed was he with the originality and value of that revolutionary (in an intellectual sense) and epoch-making work, that he set himself the task of translating it into English. No work has ever enjoyed the privilege of a more competent rendering into another language. The vigor and eloquence of Proudhon's style was fully preserved in the translation, and to this is due a large share of the influence exerted by Proudhon's work in America and England. A few years later Mr. Tucker started his paper, Liberty, which has been for more than a decade the recognized authority on anarchism. Mr. Tucker does not strictly follow Proudhon, any more than he strictly follows Warren. He rejects the inconsistencies of the former as he does the crudities of the latter. He may be said to have organized the various anarchistic ideas economic, political, etc. into a coherent and systematic whole. Where Proudhon was vague and Warren inadequate, Mr. Tucker is clear, logical, consistent, and scientific. Mr. Tucker has influenced a considerable number of able men in journalism and other professions, as well as some of the prominent men in the labor movement. We will only mention here the name of Dyer D. Lum, one of the leaders of the early Greenback movement, who died a few years ago. Mr. Lum, while sympathizing to some extent with the methods of revolutionary reformers, was for several years before his death a vigorous and scholarly champion of the economic and political ideas of anarchism.
The growth of anarchism has not been rapid, and its history is not eventful or sensational. Its indirect influences, however, have wrought great changes in social science and in the intellectual attitude of sociologists and reformers.
In Europe, the real history of philosophic anarchism begins with Proudhon. (For a fuller notice of his life and teachings, see PROUDHON.) We study him here but in brief, in relation to the movement of anarchism. Born in 1809, after a bitter personal experience with poverty and ill-paid work, he published in 1840 his great work, What is Property? Of this an admirer says: "He first with genius, and With learning and acumen rarely equalled, pleaded for absolute liberty of the individual and the doing away of all government. Property in its modern sense he showed to be not the product of individual labor on the part of the owner of the property, but the product of the labor of others, taken from them by legalized wrong, or by aid of monopolies and class legislation created by the State. Hence the truth of his celebrated sentence,""Property is theft." The cure, he argued, was to do away with all government, and then each individual could retain that which he had produced, so that justice and order and well-being would be the result of liberty."
The book exposed him to new persecution from the Government and learned societies, which continued more or less to his death in 1865. He passed much of his life, banished from France, in Belgium. Yet he was ever active and at times popular in France. He was elected in 1848 to the Constituent Assembly by 77,000 votes, which, together with his frequent imprisonments and banishments, as well as the suppression of books, shows his power and influence in his generation. Yet few followed him understandingly. Proudhon himself declared that even those who voted for him did not understand his views. He believed that in America (as seems to be the case) his thoughts would first take root. His principal writings besides the above named are: The Creation of Order in Humanity (1843); System of Economical Contradictions (1848); Justice in the Revolution and in the Church (1858); Justice (revised edition, 1859-60).
Proudhon was right; few followed him understandingly. The movement that sprang from his teachings has in the main, in Europe, been anarchist communism, which is no more like philosophic anarchism than Proudhon was like Bakunin. The real followers of Proudhon and philosophical anarchism, in Europe, can almost be counted on one's fingers, tho their influence has been more marked than this might seem to indicate.
In Germany Caspar Schmidt, better known under his nom de plume of Max Stirner, laid what some regard as the ethical foundations of anarchism in his Der Einzige und sein Eigenthum (1843). John Henry Mackay, a Scotchman by birth, but with a German mother, and brought up in Germany from boyhood, has developed philosophic anarchism in poems, a novel (The Anarchists, translated into English, 1891), and other works. In England philosophic anarchism under this name has had scarcely any development at all; but perhaps this is only because so much of its individualism, of which there has been considerable development, has come so near to philosophic anarchism in such writers as Herbert Spencer, Auberon Herbert, Wordsworth Donisthorpe, Thomas Mackay, Frederick Millar, and others. A notice of the first three will be found under each name.
II. ANARCHIST COMMUNISM.
The following statement of anarchist communism is abridged from a tract on The Place of Anarchism in Socialistic Evolution, by Pierre A. Krapotkin:
"All things belong to all, and provided that men and women contribute their share of labour for the production of necessary objects, they are entitled to their share of all that is produced by the community at large. ' But this is communism,' you may say. Yes, it is communism, but it is the communism which no longer speaks in the name of religion or of the State, but in the name of the people. . . . The tendency of this closing century is toward communism, not the monastic or barrack-room communism formerly advocated, but the free communism which places the products reaped or manufactured in common at the disposal of all, leaving to each the liberty to consume them as he pleases in his own home.
"This is the solution of which the mass of the people can most readily take hold, and it is the solution which the people demand at the most solemn epochs. In 1848 the formula 'From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs ' was the one which went straight to the heart of the masses, and if they acclaimed the republic and universal suffrage, it was because they hoped to attain to communism through them. In 1871, also, when the people besieged in Paris desired to make a supreme effort to resist the invader, what was their demand? That free rations should be served out to every one. Let all articles be put into one common stock and let them be distributed according to the requirements of each. Let each one take freely of all that is abundant, and let those objects which are less plentiful be distributed more sparingly and in due proportions this is the solution which the mass of the workers understand best. This is also the system which is commonly practised in the rural districts (of France. France). So long as the common lands afford abundant pasture, what commune seeks to restrict their use? When brushwood and chestnuts are plentiful, what commune forbids its members to take as much as they want? And when the larger wood begins to grow scarce, what course does the peasant adopt? The allowancing of individuals.
"Let us take from the common stock the articles which are abundant, and let those objects whose production is more restricted be served out in allowances according to requirements, giving preference to children and old persons that is to say, to the weak. And, moreover, let all be consumed not in public, but at home, according to individual tastes and in company with one's family and friends. This is the ideal of the masses.
"But it is not enough to argue about ' communism ' and ' expropriation; ' it is furthermore necessary to know who should have the management of the common patrimony, and it is especially on this question that different schools of socialists are opposed to one another, some desiring authoritarian communism, and others, like ourselves, declaring unreservedly in favour of anarchist communism. In order to judge between these two, let us return once again to our starting point, the Revolution of the last century.
"In overturning royalty the Revolution proclaimed the sovereignty of the people; but, by an inconsistency which was very natural at that time, it proclaimed not a permanent sovereignty, but an intermittent one, to be exercised at certain intervals only, for the nomination of deputies supposed to represent the people. In reality it copied its institutions from the representative government of England. The Revolution was drowned in blood, and, nevertheless, representative government became the watchword of Europe. All Europe, with the exception of Russia, has tried it, under all possible forms, from government based on a property qualification to the direct government of the little Swiss republics. But, strange to say, just in proportion as we have approached nearer to the ideal of a representative government, elected by a perfectly free universal suffrage, in that same proportion have its essential vices become manifest to us, till we have clearly seen that this mode of government is radically defective. Is it not, indeed, absurd to take a certain number of men from out the mass, and to intrust them with the management of all public affairs, saying to them, ' Attend to these matters; we exonerate ourselves from the task by laying it upon you; it is for you to make laws on all manner of subjects armaments and mad dogs, observatories and chimneys, instruction and streetsweeping; arrange these things as you please and make laws about them, since you are the chosen ones whom the people has voted capable of doing everything !' It appears to me that if a thoughtful and honest man were offered such a post he would answer somewhat in this fashion: " ' You intrust me with a task which I am unable to fulfil. I am unacquainted with most of the questions upon which I shall be called on to legislate. I shall either have to work to some extent in the dark, which will not be to your advantage, or I shall appeal to you and summon meetings in which you will yourselves seek to come to an understanding on the questions at issue, in which case my office will be unnecessary. If you have formed an opinion and have formulated it, and if you are anxious to come to an understanding with others who have also formed an opinion on the same subject, then all you need do is to communicate with your neighbours and send a delegate to come to an understanding with other delegates on this specific question; but you will Argument, certainly reserve to yourselves the right of taking an ultimate decision; you will not intrust your delegate with the making of laws for you. This is how scientists and business men act each time that they have to come to an agreement. '
"But the above reply would be a repudiation of the representative system, and nevertheless it is a faithful expression of the idea which is growing everywhere since the vices of representative government have been exposed in all their nakedness. Our age, however, has gone still further, for it has begun to discuss the rights of the State and of society in relation to the individual; people now ask to what point the interference of the State is necessary in the multitudinous functions of society.
"Do we require a government to educate our children? Only let the worker have leisure toinstruct himself, and you will see that, through the free initiative of parents and of persons fond of tuition, thousands of educational societies and schools of all kinds will spring up, rivalling one another in the excellence of their teaching. If we were not crushed by taxation and exploited by employers, as we now are, could we not ourselves do much better than is now done for us? The great centres would initiate progress and set the example, and you may be sure that the progress realised would be incomparably superior to what we now attain through our ministries. Is the State even necessary for the defence of a territory? If armed brigands attack a people, is not that same people armed with good weapons the surest rampart to oppose to the foreign aggressor? Standing armies are always beaten by invaders, and history teaches that the latter are to be repulsed by a popular rising alone. While government is an excellent machine to protect monopoly, has it ever been able to protect us against ill-disposed persons? Does it not, by No Need of creating misery, increase the numthe State, ber of crimes instead of diminishing them? In establishing prisons into which multitudes of men, women, and children are thrown for a time, in order to come forth infinitely worse than when they went in, does not the State maintain nurseries of vice at the expense of the tax-payers? In obliging us to commit to others the care of our affairs, does it not create the most terrible vice of societies indifference to public matters? . . .
"Let others, if they will, advocate industrial barracks or the monastery of authoritarian communism, we declare that the tendency of society is in an opposite direction. We foresee millions and millions of groups freely constituting themselves for the satisfaction of all the varied needs of human beings some of these groups organised by quarter, street, and house; others extending hands across the walls of cities over frontiers and oceans. All of these will be composed of human beings who will combine freely, and after having performed their share of productive labour will meet together, either for the purpose of consumption, or to produce objects of art or luxury, or to advance science in a new direction. This is the tendency of the nineteenth century, and we follow it; we only ask to develop it freely without any governmental interference. Individual liberty 'Take pebbles,' said Fourier,' put them into a box and shake them, and they will arrange themselves in a mosaic that you could never get by intrusting to any one the work of arranging them harmoniously. '
"Now let me pass to another part of my subject the most important with respect to the future.
"There is no more room for doubting that religions are going; the nineteenth century has given them their death-blow. But religions all religions have a double composition. They contain, in the first place, a primitive cosmogony, a rude attempt at explaining nature, and they furthermore contain a statement of the public morality born and developed within the mass of the people. But when we throw religions overboard or store them among our public records as historical curiosities, shall we also relegate to museums the moral principles which they contain? This has sometimes been done, and we have seen people declare that as they no longer believed in the various religions, so they despised morality and boldly proclaimed the maxim of bourgeois selfishness, ' Every one for himself.' But a society, human or animal, cannot exist without certain rules and moral habits springing up within it; religion may go, morality remains. If we were to come to consider that a man did well in lying, deceiving his neighbours, or plundering them when possible (this is the middle-class business morality), we. should come to such a pass that we could no longer live together. You might assure me of your friendship, but perhaps you might only do so in order to rob me more easily; you might promise to do a certain thing forme, only to deceive me; you might promise to forward a letter for me, and you might steal it, just like an ordinary governor of a jail. Under such conditions society would become impossible, and this is so generally understood that the repudiation of religions in no way prevents public morality from being maintained, Ethical Side, developed, and raised to a higher and ever higher standard. This fact is so striking that philosophers seek to explain it by the principles of utilitarianism, and recently Spencer sought to base the morality which exists among us upon physiological causes and the needs connected with the preservation of the race.
"Let me give you an example in order to explain to you what we think on the matter.
"A child is drowning, and four men who stand upon the bank see it struggling in the water. One of them does not stir; he is a partisan of ' Each one for himself,' the maxim of the commercial middle class; this one is a brute, and we need not speak of him further. The next one reasons thus: ' If I save the child, a good report of my action will be made to the ruler of heaven, and the Creator will reward me by increasing my flocks and my serfs,' and thereupon he plunges into the water. Is he, therefore, a moral man? Clearly not ! He is a shrewd calculator, that is all. The third, who is an utilitarian, reflects thus (or at least utilitarian philosophers represent him as so reasoning): ' Pleasures can be classed in two categories, inferior pleasures and higher ones. To save the life of any one is a superior pleasure, infinitely more intense and more durable than others; therefore, I will save the child. ' Admitting that any man ever reasoned thus, would he not be a terrible egotist? and, moreover, could we ever be sure that his sophistical brain would not at some given moment cause his will to incline toward an inferior pleasure that is to say, toward refraining from troubling himself? There remains the fourth individual. This man has been brought up from his childhood to feel himself one with the rest of humanity; from his childhood he has always regarded men as possessing interests in common; he has accustomed himself to suffer when his neighbours suffer, and to feel happy when every one around him is happy. Directly he hears the heart-rending cry of the mother, he leaps into the water, not through reflection, but by instinct; and when she thanks him for saving her child, he says, ' What have I done to deserve thanks, my good woman? I am happy to see you happy; I have acted from natural impulse, and could not do otherwise ! '
"You recognise in this case the truly moral man, and feel that the others are only egotists in comparison with him. The whole anarchist morality is represented in this example. It is the morality of a people which does not look for 'the sun at midnight a morality without compulsion or authority, a morality of habit. Let us create circumstances in which man shall not be led to deceive nor exploit others, and then by the very force of things the moral level of humanity will rise to a height hitherto unknown. Men are certainly not to be moralized by teaching them a moral catechism; tribunals and prisons do not diminish vice they pour it over society in floods. Men are to be moralized only by placing them in a position which shall contribute to develop in them those habits which are social, and to weaken those which are not so. A morality which has become instinctive is the true morality, the only morality which endures while religions and systems of philosophy pass away.
"Let us now combine the three preceding elements, and we shall have anarchy and its place in socialistic evolution.
"Emancipation of the producer from the yoke of capital; production in common and free consumption of all the products of the common labour.
"Emancipation from the governmental yoke; free development of individuals in groups and federations; free organization ascending from the simple to the complex, according to mutual needs and tendencies.
"Emancipation from religious morality; free morality, without compulsion or authority, developing itself from social life and becoming habitual.
"The above is no dream of students, it is a conclusion which results from an analysis of the tendencies of modern society; anarchist communism is the union of the two fundamental tendencies of our society a tendency toward economic equality and a tendency toward political liberty. Fundamental So long as communism presented itTendencies. self under an authoritarian form, which necessarily implies government, armed with much greater power than that which it possesses to-day, inasmuch as it implies economic in addition to political power so long as this was the case communism met with no sufficient response. Before 1848 it could, indeed, sometimes excite for a moment the enthusiasm of the worker who was prepared to submit to any allpowerful government, provided it would release him from the terrible situation in which he was placed, but it left the true friends of liberty indifferent.
"Anarchist communism maintains that most valuable of all conquests individual liberty and moreover extends it and gives it a solid basis economic liberty without which political liberty is delusive; it does not ask the individual who has rejected God, the universal tyrant, God the king, and God the Parliament, to give unto himself a god more terrible than any of the preceding God the community, or to abdicate upon its altar his independence, his will, his tastes, and to renew the vow of asceticism which he formerly made before the crucified God. It says to him, on the contrary, ' No society is free so long as the individual is not so ! Do not seek to modify society by imposing upon it an authority which shall make everything right; if you do, you will fail as popes and emperors have failed. Modify society so that your fellows may not be any longer your enemies by the force of circumstances; abolish the conditions which allow some to monopolize the fruit of the labour of others; and instead of attempting to construct society from top to bottom, or from the centre to the circumference, let it develop itself freely from the simple to the composite, by the free union of free groups. This course, which is so much obstructed at present, is the true, forward march of society; do not seek to hinder it, do not turn your back on progress, but march along with it ! Then the sentiment of sociability which is common to human beings, as it is to all animals living in society, will be able to develop itself freely, because our fellows will no longer be our enemies, and we shall thus arrive at a state of things in which each individual will be able to give free rein to his inclinations, and even to his passions, without any other restraint than the love and respect of those who surround him. '
"This is our ideal, and it is the ideal which lies deep in the hearts of peoples of all peoples. We know full well that this ideal will not be attained without violent shocks; the close of this century has a formidable revolution in store for us; whether it begins in France, Germany, Spain, or Russia, it will be a European one, and spreading with the same rapidity as that of our fathers, the heroes of 1848, it will set all Europe in a blaze. This coming revolution will not aim at a mere change of government, but will have a social character; the work of expropriation will commence, and exploiters will be driven out. Whether we like it or not, this will be done independently of the will of individuals, and when hands are laid on private property we shall arrive at communism, because we shall be forced to do so. Communism, however, cannot be either authoritarian or parliamentary, it must either be anarchist or non-existent; the mass of the people does not desire to trust itself again to any Savior, but will seek to organize itself by itself."
HISTORY AND METHODS OF ANARCHIST COMMUNISM.
Anarchist communism, tho more or less indebted to the thoughts of Rousseau, Proudhon, Ruge and others, owes its origin as a movement to the Russian Bakounin. Born of aristocratic and even princely parentage, Michael Bakounin, at first an officer in the Russian Army, threw up his commission at the age of 21, disgusted by the oppression of the Government and the consequent sufferings of the poor, and studied philosophy, reading Hegel and Schopenhauer in St. Petersburg and Berlin. Coming into revolutionary circles mainly under the influence of Arnold Ruge, who represented the extreme Hegelian left, Bakounin took part in the Dresden insurrection of 1848, and was arrested and condemned to death, but eventually handed over to the Russians and imprisoned in Schlusselberg and in 1852 sent to Siberia. Hence, however, he eventually escaped, through Japan and the United States, and, in 1861, appeared in London, a revolutionist, declared by his enemies to be half-crazed by his years of suffering and imprisonment. Be this as it may, he threw himself into revolutionary propaganda of every kind, mainly as an Internationalist, but sometimes inconsistently as a Panslavist, and occasionally as a Nihilist. Switzerland, Italy, and Southern France were the main scenes of his efforts, but he contrived to fill all Europe with his spirit of revolution. Gradually his utterances became wilder and his position more extreme. He commenced to preach the gospel of pandestruction. When the International (q. v.) was founded in London under the presidency of Marx in 1864, Bakounin did not at first connect himself with it. But later, realizing what capital could be made of it, he threw himself into the movement, and almost captured the International for anarchism. He did capture it in Italy, Spain, Southern France, Belgium, and to a large extent in Switzerland and other countries. In 1872, how. ever, Marx as president contrived to have the congress, of the International called at the Hague, where Bakounin could not come, since he was only secure in Switzerland, and would have been arrested in traversing any country through which he could have reached the Hague. At this congress, therefore, the adherents of Bakounin were defeated, and the General Council of the International was transferred to New York City. It resulted in the death of the International; but out of the split came the modern movements of democratic socialism and anarchist communism, economic schools, which, altho previously to 1872 they had been more or less confaunded, are now utterly distinct and even opposed. The ultimate ideals of the followers of Marx and Bakounin were not, however, so different. They both believed in communism, and communism was the early name for all socialism as well as for anarchist communism; but the split came in methods. The followers of Bakounin believed in destroying the State; Marx stood for capturing the State by legitimate political means, and through the State establishing the Social Democracy, or communism. Both opposed the present State; but one sought to overturn it at once by force, the other sought to capture it and use it. For a while it seemed doubtful which policy would win.
For a considerable time, the anarchist communists, especially in the southern countries, were stronger than the socialists. The working classes did not see the strength of the socialist programme. Anarchist -communism, if it appealed less to their heads, appealed more to their instincts. It appealed to revolutionary deed. Words, its advocates declared, were cheap; it is the propaganda by deed that makes men think. The propaganda by deed has ever been the favorite policy among anarchist communists, being defended, though not practised, even by such men as Krapotkin and Reclus. But organization among anarchists has never prospered. Their policy lends itself to individual deed. Bakounin did not quietly accept his defeat by Marx at the Hague. He and his adherents called another congress in Switzerland, and declared that they were the true International. From this time anarchist communism had an organized existence. (For further details as to the preceding period, see BAKOUNIN; INTERNATIONAL.)
In 1876 Bakounin died, Elisee Reclus, Paul Brousse, and others gathering around his grave, ready to carry on his work. In October of the same year a congress was held at Berne, and enunciated the principles of anarchist communism, altho still under the name of socialism. It denounced even the Paris Commune, as not having entirely eliminated the principle of authority. At this congress two Italian delegates were present, Carlo Cafiero and Enrico Malatesta, and went home to head a revolution in April, 1877, in the Italian province of Benevento. They burnt the archives and laid their hands on what arms and money they could find, and distributed them to the people. The same year a congress was held at Verviers, where Krapotkin first appeared on thescenes under the name of Scrachqff. In 1878, Brousse and Krapotkin commenced publishing the Avant Garde, the first anarchist organ. The same year Nobeling and Hodel made their attack upon Kaiser Wilhelm at Niederwald; the cooper Broncasi attempted the life of Alphonso XII., and Passanante the life of the King of Italy, Humbert I. At a congress at Freiburg that year, a letter from Reclus made the following succinct statement of anarchist communism: "We are revolutionaries," he said, " because we desire justice. . . . Progress has never resulted from mere peaceful evolution; it has always been an outcome of a sudden revolution. The necessary preliminary preparation of the minds of men may be a gradual process, but the realization of their hopes comes abruptly and as a surprise. . . . We are anarchists, who recognize no one as our master, as we are ourselves the masters of nobody. There is no morality without liberty. . . . We are also international collectivists, for we are aware that the very existence of human beings necessarily implies a certain social grouping." The congress voted for the appropriation by the community of all wealth, the abolition of the State, and even of any central administrative agency; and as regards means of propaganda, the congress favored the dissemination of anarchist ideas, and even rebellion and revolutionary deed. In 1879 the Avant Garde ceased to appear, and Krapotkin and others started a new paper, the Revolte, at Geneva (later moved to Paris). The same year Johann Most, expelled from Germany and driven from the socialist meetings, arrived in London, December, 1878, and in January, 1879, began publishing his paper, Freiheit.
In 1880 Ottero Gonzales attempted the life of Alphonso XII. At a congress in Switzerland of this year, Krapotkin advised the adoption of the name anarchist communism in the place of collectivism. In 1881 the French anarchists and socialists finally separated, and a congress of anarchists was held at London. Krapotkin was banished from Switzerland for his utterances; Most, in London, was sentenced to 16 months' hard labor for his words concerning the assassination of the Czar. At the close of 16 months he removed, with his paper, to the United States. There were outbreaks in southeast France, and many discoveries of dynamite plots were reported. Anarchists were arrested all through southern France. In the north, Louise Michel delivered a series of lectures. The daughters of Elisee Reclus ostentatiously contracted "free marriages." Krapotkin himself was arrested. In 1883 the anarchist trials in France took place, and 47 were sentenced, among them Louise Michel. All through Europe at this time anarchists were being arrested and sentenced. In Spain a campaign was undertaken against the Black Band. In December Cy voct was tried at Lyons for having caused the explosion at Bellecour Theatre, and was sentenced to death, but the sentence was commuted by President Grevy. The year 1884 was comparatively calm, though dynamite was found laid against the Federal Palace at Berne, and led to the expulsion of anarchists from Switzerland. In 1885 German anarchists were tried. Krapotkin published this year his Paroles d'un Revolte and Reclus his The Products of the Earth. An attempt was also made to blow up the English House of Parliament. In 1886 there were several riots in Europe, especially at Charleroi, and the great strike at Chicago took place, with the famous Haymarket meeting, the arrest of eight anarchists, and the condemnation of seven of them to death (in 1887). (See CHICAGO ANARCHISTS.) In 1887 L'Idee Ouvriere was started at Havre. In 1888 History, the Pere Peinard was started at Paris, a paper in the slang of the French streets.
In 1889 Most. Malato, and Grave all issued anarchist pamphlets. In 1890 the first international May-day demonstration took place, and the anarchists took advantage of it in incendiary speeches and gatherings. Merlino, Malato, and Louise Michel were imprisoned. The International, an anarchist paper, was started in London. In 1891 the French anarchists agitated chiefly against the army and the police. At Le vallois the black flag was unfurled. Several anarchist papers were started, the Pot a colle and the /' ' En-dehors. In 1892 bombs were exploded in France in private houses of deputies and at cafes, among others at the Cafe Rich. In June one of the dynamiters, Ravachol, was condemned to death, and executed in July. In 1893 there was more violence in Spain. Pallas was tried and executed for throwing a bomb at Marshal Campos at Barcelona, and there was also a terrible bomb explosion at the El Lyceo Theatre in Barcelona. On December 9, Vaillant threw a bomb in the French Chamber of Deputies. In 1894 severe laws against anarchists were passed in France and other countries; 100 anarchists were arrested in France alone and several deported. The papers Revolte and Pere Peinard were seized and compelled to discontinue. Jean Grave, the leading anarchist communist after Krapotkin and, Reclus, was imprisoned. Vaillant was executed. Emile Henry threw a bomb in the Cafe Terminus. Bombs were exploded also in the Hotel St. Jacques and other houses. An attempt was made to murder the prefect of Barcelona. An Italian anarchist, Cesario Santo, assassinated the French President, Carnot, at Lyons. Restrictive legislation in Italy sought not only to arrest all anarchists, but to close all trade-union meetings. In Germany the Kaiser introduced severe measures against both anarchism and socialism, which have been, however, rejected by the Reichstag. Such is a brief sketch of the anarchist-communist movement. There is no general organization. Anarchists meet in little groups, which are forever changing, dissolving, and reforming. Communication between groups is simply conducted through individuals. The party is without leaders. Anybody, even detectives, can easily join anarchist groups, but detectives learn little, for the groups as groups do nothing, and serve simply to bring individuals together. Thus the group that Vaillant belonged to did not know his project of throwing the bomb in the Chamber of Deputies. Till recently Le Revolte has been the chief literary and Le Pere Peinard the chief popular organ; but these have disappeared without successors. In 1893 an attempt was made to hold an anarchist-communist congress in connection with the World's Fair at Chicago, but it had to meet surreptitiously on account of the police, and when it met its members could agree upon no program nor declaration of principles, though it is said that an international committee was chosen. In America anarchist communism has held on to the name of the old International longer than in Europe. In 1872, as we have seen, the general council of the International was transferred at Marx's suggestion to New York City. But in this country it never thrived. The fundamental differences between the socialists and the anarchists soon showed themselves here, as in Europe. In 1877 the socialist wing, in a meeting at Newark, took the name of the Socialist Labor Party (see SOCIALISM), and practically left the International to the anarchists. The split, however, was not at once complete. In 1883 the socialists met at Baltimore and the anarchists at Pittsburg, and these took the old name of the International Working People's Association. By 1885 the split with the socialists was complete, and since then in America, as in Europe, anarchists and socialists have had nothing in common. The congress at Pittsburg adopted unanimously a manifesto or declaration of motives and principles, often called the Pittsburg proclamation, in which they describe their ultimate goal in these words:
"What we would achieve is, therefore, plainly and simply:
"1. Destruction of the existing class rule, by all means i.e., by energetic, relentless, revolutionary, and international action.
"2. Establishment of a free society based upon cooperative organization of production.
"3. Free exchange of equivalent products by and between the productive organizations without commerce and profit-mongery.
"4. Organization of education on a secular, scientific, and equal basis for both sexes.
"5. Equal rights for all without distinction to sex or race.
"6. Regulation of all public affairs by free contracts between the autonomous (independent) communes and associations resting on a federalistic basis."
In 1881, however, another association was formed, designated by the initials I. W. A., or International Workmen's Association, differing in a few particulars only from the I. W. P. A. It lays greater stress on education and is somewhat less inclined to favor violence in the present, holding that a revolution in the minds of men must precede the political revolution. The following explanation of its principles and methods is taken from the First Report of the Kansas Bureau of Labor Statistics.
"To print and publish and circulate labor literature; to hold mass-meetings; to systematize agitation; to establish labor libraries, labor halls, and lyceums for discussing social science; to maintain the labor press; to protect members and all producers from wrong; to aid all labor organizations; to aid the establishment of unity and the maintenance of fraternity between all labor organizations; to bring about an alliance between the manufacturing and agricultural producers; to encourage the spirit of brotherhood and interdependence among all producers of every State and country; to ascertain, segregate, classify, and study the habits and acts of their enemies; to secure information of the wrongs perpetrated against them, and to record and circulate the same; to arouse a spirit of hostility against and ostracism of the capitalistic press; to prepare the means for directing the coming social revolution by enlightening public opinion on the wrongs perpetrated against the producers of the .world; to obliterate national boundary lines and sectional prejudices, with a view to the international unification of the producers of all lands; and to eradicate the impression that redress can be obtained by the ballot. The organization is formed on the ' group' system that is, any person who subscribes to these principles may become an organizer. He organizes a group of eight besides himself. When this group becomes thoroughly conversant with the principles and methods of the organization, each member becomes an organizer and forms a group of his own; and this goes on indefinitely. North America is divided into 10 divisions the Canadian, the British Columbia, the Eastern States, the Middle States, the Western States, the Rocky Mountains, the Pacific Coast, the Southern States, the Mexican, and the Missouri Valley. Each division is presided over by a division executive of nine persons. The International was organized on its present basis ( on July 15, 1881, with 54 delegates, representing 320 'divisions,' or groups, composed of 600,000 members. The countries represented were France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Austria, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Russia, Siberia, Bulgaria, Roumania, Turkey, Egypt, England, Mexico, and the United States."
It is the agitation of these groups of the I. W. A. and the I. W. P. A. which have produced what popular anarchistic communism there is in this country. But the movement has come to naught. The I. W. A. and the I. W. P. A. no longer exist save in the minds of a few half-crazed persons, and the only present activity is the publication of a paper and the occasional delivery of speeches by Most and others, which make "good copy" for the newspapers. There have been also a few attempts of devoted but fanatical men to assassinate men of wealth and influence, like Frick and Russell Sage; but these acts have been very rare. When an agitator like Most speaks, he will often get a large audience, who will cheer his utterances, but the movement has no power.
Among English working men, too, there is little, if any, anarchism. The head of Oxford House, in East London, recently testified that there were no anarchists among the English working people and that the last place possible for a man to arrive with a bomb was East London. Among the foreign residents in London there are some anarchist clubs, and there is some anarchist communism among the intellectual radicals, but it has little force. The only countries in which anarchist communism at all thrives to-day are in the southern countries of Europe, under the despotism of Russia, and among some of the inflammable French and Belgians; but even in these countries it is giving
place to the organized political movement of Social Democracy. It can only thrive on such governmental persecution as the Italian Government is now attempting against the whole labor movement.
ARGUMENTS AGAINST ANARCHISM.
I. The argument against individualist anarchism is, first, that it starts from a false basis. The individual, say the philosophical opponents of anarchism, is not sovereign; he does not even exist. Man is not born to and never attains, nor can attain, individual sovereignty. From his birth to his death he is dependent upon his fellow-man, and ever must be so long as he is a social being. Society is not made up of units, but is one; and the sooner this is realized, and man no longer attempts an impossible individual sovereignty, the sooner will the individual find his true freedom in developing his inmost personality in the unity of a perfect state. Anarchism is opposed thus, first, because it misreads the facts of individual life. Second, the opponents of anarchism assert that for anarchists to define the State as necessarily invasive, because States always have been more or less invasive, is to be illogical. The State, according to the anarchist's own admission, is a power, and has been, as at least most anarchists admit, in the past a necessary power. Why, then, throw away that power? Why since some cooperative organization for defense and other purposes anarchists themselves declare necessary not use the State, making it noninvasive? To say that the State cannot be harnessed to do the will of the people, because it never has been wholly so harnessed in the past, is as if a man before the discovery of the uses of electricity should declare that electricity always must be harmful, since it always had done harm. The fact is, say these critics, that the State, with all its evils and they are to be admitted, every one has in the past been immeasurably useful and beneficial, and should not be thrown away, but captured and improved and made to do the will of freemen.
II. As to the anarchist assertion that States have no right, for example, to compel any man to pay a tax, since no individual has a right to tax another, and the mere multiplying individuals into a majority cannot make that right in many persons which is wrong in one, it is said that this is purely a doctrinaire position of unproven ethics. That it seems axiomatic and convincing to a certain class of minds by no means proves its truth. The opposite assertion that the individual is born in society, and has as his only right to take his place in society, which is a natural unit, and not made up of individual units, and has rights and duties of its own, among others that of ordering the conditions of society according to the will of the majority, and compelling others to support it, is, it is claimed, as plausible a dogma as the anarchist dogma, and a good deal more deducible from facts. The truth is, that the science of social ethics is as yet so utterly undeveloped that to talk of what is ethically right in society is to say nothing. One man holds this opinion; another that; and neither can convince the other. The only possible way out of social problems, unless one takes the religious ground of theism, and find in that a law of procedure, is to slowly learn by experience; believers in government, therefore, base their main arguments against anarchism on the facts of experience. They say:
III. It will not work. Said President Andrews, in a discussion with Mr. Tucker at Salem:
"Suppose the citizens of Salem to constitute an anarchistic group under the beautiful social compact which Mr. Tucker describes. Not many days will elapse before some of the parties to that compact will show how useless it is. Let some rioters from Beverly or Beverly Farms invade the Salem group. The foreman of the town calls all hands to turn out and put them down. One man replies that he does not care to come out; he has the rheumatism, or he is reading a book, or engaged in some other work, and says, 'I pray you, have me excused.' What is going to be done? I know of no way in which the anarchistic group named Salem can defend itself as Mr. Tucker says is legitimate except by coercing Meroz to come up to the help of the Lord against the mighty. The anarchist must here renounce his theory and resort to some of those species of action which Mr. Tucker denounces as not permissible because of the nature of coercion, aggression upon individual rights."
Says another writer: "Some rule there must be under any theory. You cannot escape law. If it is not the rule of brotherhood, it must be the rule of might. You do not escape rule by flying to anarchy. Says Mr. Donisthorpe, in his Individualism: a System of Politics: 'It is a mistake to suppose that anarchism is lawless. Nothing of the kind. Where there is no ruling body; where there is no governmental authority, as in San Francisco within the memory of many of us, what happens? Did the marauders and pests of society carry all before them? Not a bit of it. Those who had inherited the habits of a social and methodical mode of life, owing to its greater average economy, banded themselves together and straightway lynched those who were desirous of violating the principles of order and method.' This, says Mr. Donisthorpe, was anarchism. Exactly; and most people prefer Uncle Sam, with all his faults, to Judge Lynch."
Concerning the economic impossibilities of anarchism, G. Bernard Shaw says:
"The full economic detail of individualist anarchism may be inferred with sufficient completeness from an .article entitled State Socialism and Anarchism; How far they agree, and wherein they differ, which appeared in March, 1888, in Liberty. "'The economic principles of modern socialism,' says Mr. Tucker, ' are a logical deduction from the principle laid down by Adam Smith in the early chapters of his Wealth of Nations viz., that labor is the true measure of price. From this principle these three men [Josiah Warren, Proudhon, and Marx] deduced "that the natural wage of labor is its product."' "Now the socialist who is unwary enough to accept this economic position will presently find himself logically committed to the Whig doctrine of laissez-faire. "And here Mr. Tucker will cry, 'Why not? Laissez-faire is exactly what we want. Destroy the money monopoly, the tariff monopoly, and the patent monopoly. Enforce then only those land titles which rest on personal occupancy or cultivation; and the social problem of how to secure to each worker the product of his own labor will be solved simply by every one minding his own business.' "Let us see whether it will or not. Suppose we decree that henceforth no more rent shall be paid in England, and that each man shall privately own his house, and hold his shop, factory, or place of business jointly with those who work with him in it. Let every one be free to issue money from his own mint without tax or stamp. Let all taxes on commodities be abolished, and patents and copyrights be things of the past. Try to imagine yourself under these promising conditions with life before you. You may start in business as a crossingsweeper, shopkeeper, collier, farmer, miller, banker, or what not. Whatever your choice may be, the first thing you find is that the reward of your labor depends far more on the situation in which you exercise it than on yourself. If you sweep the crossing between St. James' and Albemarle Streets you prosper greatly. But if you are forestalled not only there, but at every point more central than, say, the corner of Holford Square, Islington, you may sweep twice as hard as your rival in Piccadilly, and not take a fifth of his toll. At such a pass you may well curse Adam Smith and his principle that labor is the measure of price, and either advocate a democratically constituted State socialist municipality, paying all its crossing-sweepers equally, or else cast your broom upon the Thames and turn shopkeeper. Yet here again the same difficulty crops up. Your takings depend not on yourself, but on the number of people who pass your window per hour. . . . "It is useless to multiply instances. There is only one country in which any square foot of land is as favorably situated for conducting exchanges, or as richly endowed by nature for production, as any other square foot; and the name of that country is Utopia. In Utopia alone, therefore, would occupying ownership be just. In England, America, and other places, rashly created without consulting the anarchists, Nature is all caprice and injustice in dealing with labor. Here you scratch her with a spade; and earth's increase and foison plenty are added to you. On the other side of the hedge 20 steam-diggers will not extort a turnip from her. Still less adapted to anarchism than the fields and mines is the crowded city. . . . "Now Mr. Tucker's remedy for this is to make the occupier the actual worker the owner. Obviously the effect would be not to abolish his advantage over his less favorably circumstanced competitors, but simply to authorize him to put it into his own pocket instead of handing it over to a landlord. He would, then, it is true, be (as far as his place of business was concerned) a worker instead of an idler; but he would get more product as a manufacturer and more custom as a distributor than other equally industrious workers in worse situations. He could thus save faster than they, and retire from active service at an age when they would still have many years more work before them. His ownership of his place of business would of course lapse in favor of his successor the instant he retired. How would the rest of the community decide who was to be the successor would they toss up for it, or fight for it, or would he be allowed to nominate his heir, in which case he would either nominate his son or sell his nomination for a large fine? "... To such problems as these individualist anarchism offers no solution. It theorizes throughout on the assumption that one place in a country is as good as another."
Such, in brief, is Mr. Shaw's argument. Anarchism aims to establish individual liberty; but as long as any occupier can have the best lands in agriculture and the best building lots, he can, under free competition, receive enormous gains over his competitor can with these gains buy machinery that others cannot afford, and run his competitors out of business, re-enacting under anarchism all or most of the industrial evils that we have to-day the development of great monopolies, the oppression of the small producer, wage slavery, the unemployed, etc. It is not government, but the natural inequalities of land and of human ability that are the fundamental source of the economic differences, and tinder competition the under dog must always serve the upper. The only way to individual freedom for all men is, then, to pool the difference of land and talent and have all work for all, which is collectivism. Such is, in brief, the "socialist" argument against anarchism.
IV. As to the anarchist communists, who are collectivists, it is said that for the poor, ignorant, and downtrodden to attempt to overthrow the State by force is but folly, no matter what the aim. To appeal to force will simply call out force, and the strong and rich and powerful will surely win. Moreover, to appeal to force without organization, as anarchist communists do, is to appeal to force in the weakest possible way. It may kill a few kings; it can never overthrow kingdoms. If it could overthrow the State it would simply produce a chaos, in which the strongest would rule and enact anything but equality on earth.
References: INDIVIDUALIST ANARCHISM: Instead of a Book, by B. R. Tucker (New York, 1893), the fullest exposition of individualist or philosophical anarchism; Anarchism: Its Aims and Methods, by Victor Yarros, the best brief statement; What is Property? by P. J. Proudhon, translated by B. R. Tucker (1876); System of Economical Contradictions, by Proudhon; translated by Tucker (1888); Proudhon's Complete Works (33 vols., Paris, Lacroix, 1868-76); Political Justice (on property), by William Godwin, edited by Salt (London, Sonnenschein, 1891); Free Political Institutions, an abridgment of Lysander Spooner's Trial by Jury, edited by Victor Yarros, a book treating of the administration of justice under anarchism and showing the difference between a voluntary association and government; The Vindication of Natural Society, the famous pamphlet written by Edmund Burke, the English statesman, in his radical days; Social Statics, first edition, by Herbert Spencer, which contains the chapter on The Right of the Individual to Ignore the State, omitted from recent revised editions; The Economics of Anarchy, by Dyer D. Lum; A Politician in Light of Haven, by Auberon Herbert, a plea for voluntary taxation and a criticism of government and politics; A Letter to Graver Cleveland and No Treason, by Lysander Spooner, books showing that the United States Constitution is of no authority and that government is essentially tyrannical ; Mutual Banking, by Colonel William P. Greene, a clear and ad- mirable exposition of anarchistic finance. The best philosophical anarchist papers are first and foremost Liberty (edited and published by B. R. Tucker, Gold Street, P. O. box 1312, New York City, headquarters for all literature and information as to philosophical anarchism) ; Lucifer, a weekly (published by Moses Harman in Topeka, Kan.), and Egoism, a monthly (in Oakland).
ANARCHIST COMMUNISM : God and the State, by Michel Bakounin, translated by B. R. Tucker (Boston, 1883; Appeal to the Young (1890); Coming Anarchy (Nineteenth Century, 1887, vol. xxii., p. 149); Law and Authority (sSS,6)\ Paroles d'un Revolts (1885); Place of Anarchism in Socialistic Evolution (1886); Scientific Basis of Anarchy (Nineteenth Century, 1887, vol. xxi., p. 238) all by Prince P. A. Krapotkin ; Anarchy, by an anarchist (1884), and Evolution and Revolution, by J. E. Reclus (London, Reeves, 1891); Die Anarchie (1888) and Social Monster (1890), by Johann Most (New York); Anarchism: Its Philosophy and Scientific Basis, by Albert R. Parsons (Chicago, 1887); The Red International, by Zacker (1880); translated (London, Sonnenschein, 1886). For historical notices of anarchist communism, see Contemporary Socialism, by John Rae, revised edition; the Anarchist Peril, by Felix Dubois, translated by Ralph Derecheff (1894).
The present anarchist communist papers in this country are : Most's Die Freiheit (published weekly in New York City) ; Der Anarchist, the organ of the movement in New York City, also weekly ; the Chicagoer Arbeiter Zeitung) a Chicago daily, with an especial Sunday edition, Die Packet, and a weekly edition, Der Vorbote. The principal editor of the Chicagoer Arbeiter Zeitung and the Der Vorbote is Robert Steiner; of Die Packet, H. C. Bechtold. In England, Freedom, Mrs. C. M. Wilson's monthly (published at 26 Newington Green Road, London, N.), and The Commonweal, just restarted, with Die Autonomie(in German), represent communist anarchism. The best work against anarchism is The Impossibilities of Anarchism, by Bernard Shaw (Fabian Tract, No. 45).
- ? The definitions here given are those formed and consistently used by Benjamin R. Tucker, the editor of liberty, the organ of the philosophical anarchistic movement.
- ? See Mr. Tucker's article entitled A Singular Misunderstanding in Liberty of September 10, 1892. "Regarding Land," writes Mr. Tucker, "it has been steadily maintained in these columns that protection should be withdrawn from all land titles except those based on personal occupancy and use."