The Individual or Society at large? The Dialectics of Egoism
The collective is not a living organism like us individuals. The collective doesn’t gain any thing in particular. At the end of the day, it is still individual ‘’s’’ — with an ‘’S’’ in inverted commas, that receive that good. We can say that the ‘’state’’ benefits, but these ‘’universalistic words’’ put a distance between individuals and abstract concepts and actual reality. We know that it’s not the entity called the state that is benefitting, it is not the structure that has drives and desires, it is individuals who have built that structure that benefit. If I build a boat, surely its not the boat that is benefitting from sailing, but the sailor that enjoys the boat. Likewise if I make use of society and its structures and to an extension the collective, it is not the collective that is gaining but ‘‘I’’
A lot of people think in terms of abstraction, which doesn’t aid in individual liberation. What good is the liberation of the social structure, if the individual has not been liberated. It’s like the boat is sailing by itself (The social structure sails by itself) — and the sailor is hands tied to the wheel for eternity, controlled by the structure he is meant to control himself like a cursed Sisyphus of the sea. The Society that has been liberated but has paid no attention to individual liberation is cursed like Sisyphus — because like Sisyphus it is controlled by the action of carrying the boulder, hence carrying ‘‘Society’’ on the back of the individual. The boulder might be free — that is ‘‘to free fall’’ on Sisyphus and kill him, but the individual himself is not free, but tied to a fixed social position. This is what the communists hopes to accomplish, to tie the hands of the individual to the boulder of society. The egoist wants to shatter that boulder, to go up the mountain and down again, over the rivers, under the hills and then to wherever his freedom takes him.
Can we blame Sisyphus for cheating death twice? The Gods wanted Sisyphus to die, and the Gods could not stand those that tried to cheat death, because they have invented death for ‘‘all people’’ — and death was something that ‘‘belonged to all’’ — likewise society is something that belongs to all people, and anyone who wants to escape from such a society by non-conformism, will be held accountable to that society. The egoist who cheats society like Sisyphus is punished. Individualism has cheated death many times, but it was punished by society.
Yet if we are clever enough, we are able to break from the chains of the abstraction of society.
Some might use certain biological arguments in order to validate the existence of society — they might argue something along the lines of, ‘‘Dismissing the society as a unit and claiming it is only a collection of individuals is like dismissing the organism as a unit and claiming it is only a collection of cells.’’ — There are two things that are wrong with this argument against egoism — first and foremost the egoist never dismissed society as a whole, we are not against ‘‘society’’ — we are only against society’s manner in which it forces me to engage in society. If there is an egoist revolution to overthrow late stage communism — the egoists will abolish the permanence of society, not ‘‘society itself’’. Communism doesn’t abolish property, it only transforms private property into public property owned and ruled by society — in the same manner, the egoists does not want to abolish society, they want to transform it into a voluntary society, where we only engage in society whenever we need it in the form of the union of egoists, but for the most part we keep to our small circle, we keep to ourselves as individuals. The second thing that is wrong with this statement, is trying hard to illustrate how society is somehow a physical reality by comparing it to a body or a unit. The two are not even comparable, while my body is certainly a unit because it is bonded by my own collection of cells which I own, society on the other hand is only an abstraction, only a collection of individuals exists — individuals are not bonded together through cells — each human is like a monad unto himself, it is impossible to physically share bodies, I am quite certain that my body cannot be part of your body as my leg or my arm are part of my own body. If we put all humans beings in a pot of stew and boiled them — then perhaps we might argue that they have become the stew — but up to that point, their bodies would have melted, and they would be dead — meaning that they are no longer individuals, but they are rather just blood vessels in a stew. This is what the abstraction of society tries to create, it tries to force us individuals to submit to society like a motley crew in a stew. Society is a spook — but the communists even more than the capitalist hail ‘‘society’’ and base their communism in society. What is society? — It is that spook which fools people into thinking that there is a body outside of them — that there is something that is beyond every individual.
Is the union of egoists therefore also an ‘‘abstract society’’? — The Answer is ‘‘No’’ — earlier I remarked how society is that thing which fools people into thinking there is something beyond the individual — meanwhile the union of egoists does the opposites, because in it’s social construction, it claims that each individual views himself as the highest object. Whenever egoists mention the ‘‘bad effects’’ of society we are referencing the permanence of society, the abstraction of society as something that the individual should strive for, as something that is higher than himself. If all egoists have dispelled the abstraction of society — all that remains is ‘‘Individuals and their relationship with each other’’ — you can call this a ‘‘Society of individuals’’ where society does not impose itself on individuals, but vice versa, the individual exerts himself on society aka through ‘‘The union of egoists’’ and its machinations. As I remarked, we don’t seek to destroy all of society, we just want to destroy the abstraction and permanence of society as a ‘‘generality’’ and as a fetter, a tie tight around the individual’s neck. The union of egoists is a type of society that is temporary and not permanent and rather than a tight tie, it is a very loose tie, to which the individual can have control over with his will.
The egoist seeks to unlosen the last ‘‘Tie’’ — the last fetter.
‘‘Greek law, on which the Greek states rested, had to be perverted and undermined by the egoists within these states, and the states went down that the individuals might become free, the Greek people fell because the individuals cared less for this people than for themselves. In general, all states, constitutions, churches, have sunk by the secession of individuals; for the individual is the irreconcilable enemy of every generality, every tie, every fetter. Yet people fancy to this day that man needs “sacred ties”: he, the deadly enemy of every “tie.” The history of the world shows that no tie has yet remained unrent, shows that man tirelessly defends himself against ties of every sort; and yet, blinded, people think up new ties again and again, and think that they have arrived at the right one if one puts upon them the tie of a so-called free constitution, a beautiful, constitutional tie; decoration ribbons, the ties of confidence between “ — — — ,” do seem gradually to have become somewhat infirm, but people have made no further progress than from apron-strings to garters and collars.
Everything sacred is a tie, a fetter.’’ — Max Stirner, The Ego and its Own
Stirner clearly shows his dialectical egoism here exercising itself throughout history. He shows how every ‘‘Generality’’ — every form of collectivism, society, churches, state and the like fall susceptible to the irreconcilable enemy of every generality which is the ‘‘egoist’’ — While the Marxists in a eureka moment claims that ‘‘communism has reconciled all contradictions’’ — Stirner and the egoists disagree, and Stirner shows us clearly that even after communism — which we define as ‘‘The highest point of ‘‘Generality’’ — there will be an equal contradictory opposition, equal in strenght in order to challenge generality and that is called egoism which is precisely the opposite of generality, henceforth rugged individualism. The egoist challenges the convenient abstractions of these ‘‘Beautiful societies and Utopias’’ while also critiquing the convenient abstractions of capitalism that seek to remain in power.
The capitalists in particular use these convenient abstractions in order to override our critical faculties. That’s why it’s important for individuals who are oppressed to develop in their egoism, because it will allow them to override this convenient abstraction. Abstractions override our critical faculties — All the more the reason to adopt egoism, because it allows you to constantly in your daily life to fight against these abstractions and abolish them from your mind. Have I abolished all the abstractions in my mind? — Of course not, but I am much less effected by the abstractions of society then say a normal individual who partakes in a philistine mentality.
It’s like a magic trick or an illusion, ‘‘Before you learn the trick’’ — you are spooked by its illusion, but after you learn the trick, you are no longer impressed by it, and no longer spooked by it.
‘‘The individual does not dictate in a society of capital and wage labour?’’ — Says the Marxist! Then I ask you, ‘’Who dictates?’’ — This thing which you call ‘‘Society’’ — which cannot even think, breathe, which isn’t even a living organism? — If the individual does not dictate, then society cannot either. The individual can move and society can remain still, the individual can move and move society alongside with him but when the individual is at rest, then society is also at rest. Every action you and I take matters, a world where I or you do not exist, is a totally different reality. A world where I did not exist, is an absolutely different world with a different society. Every movement you take, changes society. Society cannot move unless the individual moves in the first place.
Class itself does not have ‘‘Class interests’’ — the so-called scientific Marxists don’t know a thing when it comes to science, sometimes they use terms like ‘‘class interests’’ — implying that classes have interests like human beings do. If a ‘‘Class’’ has a physical brain and a heart that pumps blood, I would like to be directed towards that living organism. There’s no such thing as ‘‘Classess’’ having interests, there’s only individuals that have interests. There are no ‘‘Nations’’ — only Walls that pretend that the other side of the wall is a funny country with a funny name.
An individual finds himself in a class, — in a fixed social position. The egoist rebels against everything that is fixed. The communists hopes to resolve the issue of class, by replacing one fixed position with another, by destroying class and implementing a socialist rule by the collective which in itself becomes fixed. Even when the state withers away in late stage communism and advances into full stage communism, the collective still determines the individual’s role in society and as such the collective becomes the new fixed position, rather than that of ‘‘class’’ — that of collective society. Rather than oppressed by the bourgeoisie, I am now oppressed by every other person that isn’t ‘‘Me’’ in the name of equality. For the communist, we are only equal, in so far as we are all equally oppressed to each other, equally accountable to each other according to the communist society’s standards for how I as a unique individual shall live my life in relation to others. As long as equality exists, there can be no freedom. If I am equal to another, then that implies that I cannot be free from the other’s presence. Being equal to each other as Christ has remarked in the washing of the feet of the apostles, is precisely being a slave to each other. Society, Collecticism, equality and Law precide above individuals as spirits and dominate over every unique individual. These principles become a new authority, through which everything in it’s eyes becomes equal, just like God long ago was viewed as the authority over mankind and every man was equal in so far as they were baptized under the name of Christ and the spirit. They became Brothers and Sisters in Jesus’s name and pledged to his spiritual authority. The marxist does the same — because they want the proletariat to become Brothers and Sisters, only equal in so far as they are pledged to science, historical and dialcetical materialism. Brothers and Sisters’s in collective society’s name pledging under its authority. They pledge themselves to the fixed ideas of political liberty, but when they do so, religion becomes free and makes me its slave, and communism becomes free, but I become it’s slave or capital becomes free and likewise living in a capitalist society I am the slave of capital.
“Political liberty,” what are we to understand by that? Perhaps the individual’s independence of the State and its laws? No; on the contrary, the individual’s subjection in the State and to the State’s laws… Political liberty means that the polis, the State, is free; freedom of religion that religion is free, as freedom of conscience signifies that conscience is free; not, therefore, that I am free from the State, from religion, from conscience, or that I am rid of them. It does not mean my liberty, but the liberty of a power that rules and subjugates me; it means that one of my despots, like State, religion, conscience, is free. State, religion, conscience, these despots, make me a slave, and their liberty is my slavery.” — The Ego and Its Own, Max Stirner
These ideas make me their slave, and the liberty of society at large is my slavery as the unique individual.
Part II — Dialectical Egoism
In this segment of the essay I shall attempt to apply dialects through egoism. The same dialectical logic is found in both Hegelian dialectics and Scientific Marxist dialectical logic. While Marx’s dialectics are materialist, they lead towards communism, Hegel’s dialectics are idealist, meanwhile Stirner’s dialects claims that both Hegel and Marx are idealist, and even though Marx claims to be a materialist, he still ‘‘spooked’’ by spiritual abstractions and the spiritual implications of society remain as a form of sacradness in communism. Stirner’s dialectics is very materialist, rejects idealism at the core, even that very ‘‘subtle sublime idealism of Marx’’ is rejected. Furthermore, Stirner’s dialects lead to nothing. Do we ‘‘dialectical egoists’’ claim to know the future of society ? — The answer is ‘‘No’’ — only the scientific Marxists tries to prophesize like some prophet of the outcome of society through dialectics. The Ego and its own was written as a parody of the thinkers of the time, and therefore Stirner in his own way was making fun of the assertions of thinkers of the time, even to the assertion of dialectics itself. Therefore, Stirner only used the dialects to prove that the dialects could literally apply to anything, even to egoism! Therefore he uses a strategy of ‘‘Check Mate’’ in his philosophy, if ‘‘Dialectics is true’’ — then it can prove how it will lead to egoism, and lead to nothing, at the same time if the other dialecticians such as Hegelians and Marxist deny Stirner’s argument, they would be denying dialectics themselves. Stirner uses the weapon of his enemy against them,
‘‘The main focus of his mockery is the Hegelian method, as this had become the dominant philosophical method in Germany at the time Stirner lived. And his joke is woven throughout this book. First of all, he carefully constructed the outline of The Unique to parallel that of Hegel’s The Phenomenology of the Spirit and Feuerbach’s The Essence of Christianity, while undermining the foundations of both works. Some scholars have called him the ultimate Hegelian, because he makes use of Hegel’s dialectical method in his book. However, in “The Philosophical Reactionaries,” Stirner explains that this too was part of the joke: “Do you philosophers actually have an inkling that you have been beaten with your own weapons? Nothing but an inkling. What retort can you hearty fellows make against it, when I again dialectically demolish what you have just dialectically put up? You have shown me with what ‘eloquence’ one can make all into nothing and nothing into all, black into white and white into black. What do you have against it, when I turn your neat trick back on you? But with the dialectical trick of a philosophy of nature, neither you nor I will cancel the great facts of modern natural research, no more than Schelling and Hegel did.” Stirner chose to use the methods of those he was mocking to undermine what they claimed those methods showed, not because he believed in those methods, but because he wanted to show that, at best, they were mere intellectual tools, ones that could be turned to damn near any use in the realm of ideas.
In fact, what Stirner has to say leaves no room for any sort of universal or historical progress, dialectical or otherwise. It is no accident that Stirner begins and ends his book with the same words, taken from Goethe’s poem “Vanitas! Vanitatum Vanitas!” I have translated these words (fairly literally) as: “I have based my affair on nothing.”- Wolfi Landstreicher, Stirner, The Wise Guy, Introduction to The Unique and Its property, 2017
Wolfi Landstreicher, clearly lays out how Stirner uses the dialectics only in so far as to destroy the dialectics. Stirner knows that other dialecticians are stubborn, therefore he entertains the idea that the dialectical process might be true, and he builds upon this philosophy of the unique. Whether the dialectical process exists or not, — it makes no difference. If the dialectics are true and they exist, then it leads to the unique one, it leads to ‘‘Nothing’’ — This is a fact that communists will deny, but in so doing they would be denying the dialectics itself — the very core of their philosopy. If they throw away their ‘‘Dialectical basis of their philosophy’’ — then their political philosophy, for example Marxism becomes bankrupt and irrelevant. They would have to necessarily change their world view from Marxism to Egoism. If the dialectics does not exists, then the unique still exists. Whether it exists or does not exists, Stirner’s unique one will always exist one way or another.
Stirner’s method is indeed a parody, but it was mainly a parody against Utopian socialists, — While Stirner himself might have had a discussion or two with scientific marxists such as Engels in his life, this does not imply that Stirner was particularly acquainted with scientific Marxism. When Stirner died, Scientific marxism was just emerging into existence. Therefore, Egoists of our age are called — not by ‘‘duty’’ — but by their own will to carry on Stirner’s parody and this time reflect on Scientific Marxism and parody that instead.
Let us continue on this ‘‘massive joke’’ and continue to troll a little bit longer. Let us assume that dialectics are a fact:
There are three main components to Marxist dialectics:
- The law of quantity into quality (and vice versa)
- The unity of Opposites
- The Negation of the Negation
Let us apply the same logic of Marxism to Egoism — if Egoism still makes sense afterwards, then this proves Stirner’s statement, that the dialectics can be used as an intellectual tool to prove just about anything, even that which is absurd.
Let us start with the law of quantity into quality — first and foremost quality refers to the natural characteristics for a thing for example ‘‘pages from a book’’ but quantity on the other hand refers to how much of that thing there is, for example there are 50 pages in the book. There are times when the amount does not change the nature of the book, for example a 100 page book as opposed to a 50 page book, — both of them are books, there nature has not changed — in this case the only change that occurs is a quantitative change, because one book has more pages than the other. However, in some cases, if the book is reduced to just ‘‘one page’’ — this quantitative change also results in a qualitative change, because it changes the nature of the book, — because in this scenerio, reducing a book to one change, means that the book is no longer a book by nature.
According to Engels,
‘‘All qualitative differences in nature rest on differences of chemical composition or on different quantities or forms of motion (energy) or, as is almost always the case, on both. Hence it is impossible to alter the quality of a body without addition or subtraction of matter or motion, i.e. without quantitative alteration of the body concerned. In this form, therefore, Hegel’s mysterious principle appears not only quite rational but even rather obvious.’’ Engels’ Dialectics of Nature, II. Dialectics (The general nature of dialectics to be developed as the science of interconnections, in contrast to metaphysics.)
In this manner the quality of a thing only changes by the addition or subtraction of quantity, that will inherently alter the quality. In another sceneario he presents to us the transformation of quantity into quality by recounting Hegel’s example,
‘‘In physics, bodies are treated as chemically unalterable or indifferent; we have to do with changes of their molecular states and with the change of form of the motion which in all cases, at least on one of the two sides, brings the molecule into play. Here every change is a transformation of quantity into quality, a consequence of the quantitative change of the quantity of motion of one form or another that is inherent in the body or communicated to it. “Thus, for instance, the temperature of water is first of all indifferent in relation to its state as a liquid; but by increasing or decreasing the temperature of liquid water a point is reached at which this state of cohesion alters and the water becomes transformed on the one side into steam and on the other into ice.” (Hegel, Encyclopedia, Collected Works, VI, p. 217.) in Engels’ Dialectics of Nature, II. Dialectics (The general nature of dialectics to be developed as the science of interconnections, in contrast to metaphysics.)
When we observe this using conventional physics, it quite makes sense, that the alteration of quantity would result in the transformation of quantity into quality, however if we observe modern science, today with Quantum theory and mechanics. If using Quantum observation we realize that light can be measured both as a wave and a particle — Then how come light can be two things at once — this quantum observation seems to contradict Engels’s and Hegel’s analysis that change can only occur through an alteration of quantity or vice versa. Niels Bohr made a hypothesis that through our action of attempting to measure a particle, we inherently change its behavior. According to Engels ‘‘Change’’ occurs when there’s a quantitative change and vice versa, but for Bohr and modern physics, Change occurs in our simple attempt to measure the object, and our interaction to the object outside the object in-itself. Modern physics for the most part has established that in Quantum one thing can change it’s ‘‘quality’’ it’s nature without quantity alteration — Quantum denies Engels’s law of The law of quantity into quality (and vice versa). While Engels argues that a change in quality implies a change in quantity and a change in quantity implies a change in quality — Quantum has argued that a nature of a thing can change without any alteration to it’s quantity. The Light that is measured can be measured as both as particle and a wave, and therefore the change from ‘‘particle’’ and ‘‘wave’’ implies a change in the nature of the object, but it changes not on the principle of alteration of quantity, but on the principle of the mere act of measuring the object.
Many modern marxists who supposdely claim to be ‘‘scientific’’ don’t like the quantum theory and some of them have even denounced it as ‘‘Petit-bourgeois idealism’’ — a capitalist weapon disguised as a science in order to nullify marxist science — If this isn’t a conspiracy theory, I don’t know what is?
I can also verify this accusation by simply quoting Marxists themselves,
‘‘Why should Marxists concern themselves with this part of science? Best leave it to the scientists, perhaps, those experts who know best. But bourgeois ideology permeates every aspect of life under capitalism. Scientists claim to be objective, simply dealing with the facts. There are countless examples that prove the opposite, from the cover-up for decades of the health-effects of smoking to the Nazi experiments in eugenics. Anyway, how can a scientist be objective when under capitalism science and technique are the key to vast profits?’’ — Against the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics — in defence of Marxism, Harry Nielsen, 2005
This is a mind-blowing argument because of its stupidity. If one argues that science cannot be objective under capitalist science, then the same science which Marx and Engels developed under the capitalist science of the 19th century also cannot be objective. The same so-called Marxists Scientists are the first ones to denounce science whole-hearthedly and becoming unscientific and idealists at the first moment of ‘‘Change’’ — All dialecticians preach change, but surprisingly enough the communists who preach change, seem to be afraid of ‘‘change’’ — and any development that replaces late stage communism is something that they want to halt and react against, as the biggest reactionary conservatives. If someone proved to me, that egoism can be replaced by some higher system that can replace it dialectically, then I would whole hearthedly accept it as a higher mode of liberation. As an egoists I do not fear change, but seek it always.
Let us suppose however that Quantum mechanics is wrong and that the Marxists are right? — What does this imply for egoism?
According to Engels this law of The law of quantity into quality (and vice versa) is not only present in the sciences as part of the natural world, but also in history and society,
‘‘In biology, as in the history of human society, the same law holds good at every step, but we prefer to dwell here on examples from the exact sciences, since here the quantities are accurately measurable and traceable.’’ — Engels’ Dialectics of Nature, II. Dialectics (The general nature of dialectics to be developed as the science of interconnections, in contrast to metaphysics.)
and the following quote:
‘‘But to have formulated for the first time in its universally valid form a general law of development of nature, society, and thought, will always remain an act of historic importance.’’ — Engels’ Dialectics of Nature, II. Dialectics (The general nature of dialectics to be developed as the science of interconnections, in contrast to metaphysics.)
In both quotation, Engels affirms how this law of dialectics functions also in society, this means that this law of nature is applicable even after late-stage communism has been achieved. For instance, let us take the example of capitalism — Under capitalism the development of productive forces through the industrial revolution was a change in quantity, however — the more the machinery developed in quantity, and the more there where quantitivate alterations to early mercantile capitalism, the more the political economy was changes in it’s quality. The nature of capitalism as a ‘‘quality’’ fully changed because of a quantity in the development of the productive forces. It implied that capitalists would concetrate themselves on owning the means of production and therefore the industrial revolution’s alteration in the quantity of the means of production, implied that the feudal and mercantile characteristics were metamorphosed into fully developed capitalism. Therefore the change from ‘‘Feudal mercantilism’’ to ‘‘Capitalism’’ occured also because of the quantity of productive forces, which in turn altered the political economy, from mercantilism into capitalism.
What about the changes in Late-Stage Communism — If we assume that communism means the communal ownership of public property and the means of production, and the communal ownership of the surplus value of all labour, to each according to his need. Then we have created a society of extreme abundance, this is also a quantitative change, which implies the more abundance there is — The less ‘‘Labour’’ we would recquire to do — As such if Labour is no longer recquired, either because there are ‘‘automations’’ that can do the job instead of the proletariat or otherwise because society is abundant, this would imply the abolition of labour itself and to an extension the abolition of ‘‘workers’’ — Therefore the quantitative changes in late-stage communism, results in the qualitative change of individuals — From workers, they no longer remain ‘‘Proletariat’’ but they become ‘‘Unique Individuals’’ —
The manner in which Labour is abolished is through both a physical struggle between the ‘‘society of workers’’ and ‘‘Society of Idlers’’ — but labour also withers away the more abundant society becomes. According to Marxist theory, when class is abolished, the state withers away because it no longer acts as a organ of class rule — since class no longer exists, it cannot act as an organ of class rule — therefore the state withers away. Labour in a communist society is attacked on two-fronts, the struggle between workers and idlers and the withering away of labour itself because a society that becomes more abundant recquires less and less labour, especially if that society has automatons.
If Labour is abolished, the worker is abolished, and with the abolishment of the worker, no one needs to ‘‘own’’ the means of production any longer. Either the means of production are controlled by automatons in a self-sustaining community, or otherwise communist society has created such abundance that it no longer recquires the proletariat’s relation and ownership over the means of production. The Quantity of abundance, transform the communist political economy, into a new kind of economy — ‘‘An Egoist Economy’’ which becomes the new ‘‘Quality’’ — This egoist economy transforms workers into ‘‘unique individuals’’ — and it abolishes workers, labour itself and ownership over the means of production. As such, workers, labour and ownership over the means of production are no longer recquired — While these tools are necessary under late-stage communism, they are no longer recquired in the egoist economy. Communism paves the way towards Egoism using the The law of quantity into quality (and vice versa) which the Marxists believe in.
This might seem like something straight out of ‘‘Bob’s Black’s abolishment of Work’’ — but the truth of the matter is Bob Black has some good points when he says that Work is tyrannical, and that we should replace ‘‘Work with play’’ — Just because we stop Working, does not mean that we would idle around all day, but we would engage in playful activities voluntarily which would act as a mode of creation and production.
He says in his book that,
‘‘ Play is just the opposite. Play is always voluntary. What might otherwise be play is work if it’s forced. This is axiomatic. Bernie de Koven has defined play as the “suspension of consequences.” This is unacceptable if it implies that play is inconsequential. The point is not that play is without consequences. This is to demean play. The point is that the consequences, if any, are gratuitous. Playing and giving are closely related, they are the behavioral and transactional facets of the same impulse, the play-instinct. They share an aristocratic disdain for results. The player gets something out of playing; that’s why he plays. But the core reward is the experience of the activity itself (whatever it is). Some otherwise attentive students of play, like Johan Huizinga (Homo Ludens), define it as game-playing or following rules. I respect Huizinga’s erudition but emphatically reject his constraints. There are many good games (chess, baseball, Monopoly, bridge) which are rule-governed but there is much more to play than game-playing. Conversation, sex, dancing, travel — these practices aren’t rule-governed but they are surely play if anything is. And rules can be played with at least as readily as anything else.’’ —Bob Black, The Abolition of Work
I do agree with Bob Black that Labour should be turned into ‘’Play’’ — this is the transformative quantity of communism, that translates into labour transforming itself into ‘’Play’’ as a quality. When the quantity of labour is increased in communist society, the quality of labour becomes more oppressive, but since more labour creates more abundance, society in turn will lead towards a decrease in the quantity of work in communism — therefore labour is transformed into idleness and play as a quality.
I only disagree with Black when he says,
‘‘Work is the source of nearly all the misery in the world. Almost any evil you’d care to name comes from working or from living in a world designed for work. In order to stop suffering, we have to stop working.’’ Bob Black, The Abolition of Work
While I do agree that work is a source of misery, it seems to me as if Black is implying that in order to solve the problem we should just do a little ‘‘Exodus’’ — that we should organize a ‘‘Non-labour organization’’ of people who decide not to labour at all. While this is good ‘‘Praxis’’ — I don’t think it will solve the problem, nor do I think that it will abolish labour world-wide. The best this kind of praxis can do is abolish labour commune by commune, but it is very unlikely that it will solve the problem of labour world-wide. This Praxis has its uses, but I think that communism will be the source of destroying labour itself. There will come a time under communism when labour itself is abolished, henceforth, egoism truimphs, and ‘‘work’’ is transformed into ‘‘Play’’ as a quality. The quantity of abundance in communism as a consequence abolishes labour by transforming ‘‘labour’’ into ‘‘play’’
The second principle of Marxist Dialectics is the unity of opposites:
The unity of opposites quite simply means that contradiction in their clash together, will unite as opposites and merge into each other over time, creating through themselves a new synthesis. A cute way to understand this is through the statement, ‘‘opposites attract’’ — In Egoism there is the thesis of ‘‘communist society’’ which finds itself in opposition with ‘‘egoist individualism’’ — if we apply the unity of opposites, the unity of these two quite simply creates the ‘‘Union of Egoists’’ — So far Egoism makes sense, even when we apply marxist logic to it. Let us apply the unity of opposites to ‘‘Labour’’ under communism.
We assume that communism will be an abundant society and therefore ‘‘Labour’’ will come into contradiction with ‘‘idleness’’ — we are not implying that humans beings are naturally ‘‘lazy’’ — we are arguing instead that in an abundant society, people will find less and less reason to work. This has been proven even in capitalist society — if the bourgeois state gives a pension to our elders, the majority of elders will cease their labour all together. Many Marxists claim that with the abolishment of the alientation of labour, workers will have fun working — This is true, with the abolishment of alienation, people will dislike their work less — however if you give people the opportunity to get what they want without labouring, they will prefer this option, — this is proven by our elders today, they cease their labour not because they are incapable of labour because of their ‘‘old age’’ but because they can benefit from society without putting in labour in return. Elderly people already utilize the concept of ‘‘play’’ — because rather than labour, they merely engage in fun activities where they can create things that amuse them.
The thesis of labour will meet it’s antithesis which is ‘‘idleness’’ — Communism will gradually create a society of idlers where some people are still believers of labour, while the others simply idle around and take what they need from the backs of those who labour. Communism will create a society divided between two — ‘‘The Society of workers’’ and ‘‘The Society of Idlers’’
Those who still ‘‘labour’’ will either feel a sense of entitlement and therefore take control of the surplus value of labour and cut the supply of resources towards the idlers (Not allowing idlers to benefit from their labour) — indirectly starving the idlers unless they decide to labour just like everybody else or otherwise they might feel angry and cease their labour all together. This clash between the unity of opposites will create a synthesis, when the thesis of hard labour conflicts with the antithesis of idleness, it will create a synthesis that will transform labour into ‘‘Play’’ — therefore as such ‘‘work is abolished’’ — people no longer produce things for the sake of enriching society, but only ‘‘play’’ with the tools they have in order to benefit themselves, to create because it is of interest to them, not because it is of the interest of material accumulation of society at large.
Let us now apply the unity of opposites to the union of egoists:
The union of egoists is basically a synthesis of both communist society and individualism — therefore this proves that communism is not the last stage of history, but egoism on the other hand is. (Then again, egoist dialectics are leading towards nothing) but this process is the last stage of history. Marx argued a three-step process of change — from capitalism, to socialism, into communism — but instead, here we see the change from communism, to individualist insurrection, into the Union of egoists. Just like communism is the result of the clash between capitalism and socialism, the union of egoists is the result of the clashing unity of opposites of insurrectionist individualism and communist society. The union of egoists — being totally free of any fetter is the last ‘‘Major struggle’’ — all that remains is ‘‘Minor daily’’ struggles in nature and life, where by the unique one constantly liberates himself from other sacred ties.
Some Anarcho-communists might think that this contradiction nonsense, that the individual will find themselves at odds with ‘‘communist society’’ is pure nonsense — but don’t take my word for it, but I think you may take the word of the father of Anarchism, Pierre-Joseph Proudhon when he says the following about communism,
‘‘The members of a community, it is true, have no private property; but the community is proprietor, and proprietor not only of the goods, but of the persons and wills. In consequence of this principle of absolute property, labor, which should be only a condition imposed upon man by Nature, becomes in all communities a human commandment, and therefore odious. Passive obedience, irreconcilable with a reflecting will, is strictly enforced.’’ — Pierre- Joseph Proudhon, What is Property? p. 213–124
Proudhon here proves how even under communism not all contradictions are reconciled, man no longer obeys the state because he fears the state, rather he ‘‘passively obeys’’ communal society that has become the proprietor not only of the goods, but of the person’s will in so far as they are labourers in that society. Proudhon speaks in the same tune I spoke in the beginning regarding this issue, — that society itself becomes exploitative because of its permanence. Proudhon is one of the first critics of late-stage communism from leftist circles, followed later on by Stirner in 1844.
In another quote, Proudhon claims that,
‘‘Communism is inequality, but not as property is. Property is the exploitation of the weak by the strong. Communism is the exploitation of the strong by the weak. In property, inequality of conditions is the result of force, under whatever name it be disguised: physical and mental force; force of events, chance, fortune; force of accumulated property, &c. In communism, inequality springs from placing mediocrity on a level with excellence. This damaging equation is repellent to the conscience, and causes merit to complain; for, although it may be the duty of the strong to aid the weak, they prefer to do it out of generosity, — they never will endure a comparison. Give them equal opportunities of labor, and equal wages, but never allow their jealousy to be awakened by mutual suspicion of unfaithfulness in the performance of the common task.’’ — Pierre- Joseph Proudhon, What is Property? p. 213–124
And the most important of Proudhon’s characteristics of communism is when he foresaw that there will be a contradiction between the society of idlers and the society of labourers under communism,
‘‘Communism is oppression and slavery. Man is very willing to obey the law of duty, serve his country, and oblige his friends; but he wishes to labor when he pleases, where he pleases, and as much as he pleases. He wishes to dispose of his own time, to be governed only by necessity, to choose his friendships, his recreation, and his discipline; to act from judgment, not by command; to sacrifice himself through selfishness, not through servile obligation. Communism is essentially opposed to the free exercise of our faculties, to our noblest desires, to our deepest feelings. Any plan which could be devised for reconciling it with the demands of the individual reason and will would end only in changing the thing while preserving the name. Now, if we are honest truth-seekers, we shall avoid disputes about words.
Thus, communism violates the sovereignty of the conscience, and equality: the first, by restricting spontaneity of mind and heart, and freedom of thought and action; the second, by placing labor and laziness, skill and stupidity, and even vice and virtue on an equality in point of comfort. For the rest, if property is impossible on account of the desire to accumulate, communism would soon become so through the desire to shirk.’’ — Pierre- Joseph Proudhon, What is Property? p. 213–124
According to Proudhon therefore, late stage communism will firstly restrict the spontaneity of man and heart, our freedom of thought and action as sole individuals, and secondly by placing these contradictory elements of labour, laziness, skill and stupidity and vice and virtue on equal points, communist society will experience a lot of contradictions between these opposites and therefore as property is impossible on account of the desire to accumulate, therefore communism too is not ‘‘eternal’’ but temporary, and therefore communism will slowly shrink, it will be relaced by egoism out of it’s desire to shrink and communism just like property will become impossible to exist. The features of commonality or social relationship of man with man may remain in the union of egoists but communism itself will become impossible.
Therefore the role of the egoists in contradiction with egoist society should be to reinstate the spontaneity of man and heart, our freedom of thought and actions as sole individualis, and by placing idleness, stupidity, vice on higher points than labour, skill or virtue. By this we mean, not that we want people to be stupid, but that they can relax and not worry about the world, in a state of ‘‘hakuna matata’’ — No longer do the egoists worry about virtue, but should their be a ‘‘vice’’ that is more of interest to them — then they should pursue that vice more than they pursue the virtue that chains them to a system of morality. No longer do we worry about labour, idleness becomes a characteristics of the unabstracted society of egoists, any form of labour is no longer a form of labour but as Bob Black says, a form of idle ‘‘play’’.
For the longest time, anarchist theory has been very incoherent, not because it doesn’t have any basis in reality, but because it has had many ideas throughout history, some anarchists are divided between individualism, egoism, mutualism, syndicalism, collectivism, communism and the list goes on. Every anarchist theorists has given us something of value, it is an anarchist quality that there should be such variance between anarchist theories. We do not base our ideology on one ‘‘sole thinker’’ for their basis like the marxists do, but we spread ourselves out across the board of a variety of thinkers — This is Anarchism’s strongest quality but also it’s weakest. The failure of anarchists has been to compile all of these ideas into one book, imagine if the bible that has numerous books had not been compiled together, numerous religions would have been formed from it, instead the church benefited from compiling all the religious books into one canonical bible. Throughout my life, this is what I have tried to do, to compile all the anarchist thinkers into one book that has no contradictions whenever the different variants of anarchism are combined.
For Marx, the development of dialectics is like this: ‘‘Capitalism, Socialism and communism’’
For Proudhon the dialectics is as follows: ‘‘Capitalism, intermediary stage of dual power and mutualism’’
For me, the development of dialectics is like this: ‘‘Capitalism, Anarchism, Anarcho-communism, individualist insurrection/mutualism and finally union of egoists.’’
Egoist Mutualism is only an intermediary stage which the egoists use to survive in communist society, without depending on the communist society. Once the idlers take the means of production from the hands of the workers, there is no longer any need for mutualism, every property becomes the property of the individual — production becomes an individual act, and when the time comes that a number of egoists feel the need that production becomes a ‘‘social act’’ — they will simply unite in the form of a union of egoists.
By Egoist mutualism in contradiction with communist society we mean that the form of exchange of the egoists will be different from that of the communists. While the communists rely on society and to the principle to each according to their need. Egoist mutualism would have a form of exchange that basically exchanges resources with other egoists that are of equal value. For example, if I give you 10 bread, you give me 4 bottles of milk.
The egoists mutualist will simply exchange that which they think is of equal value, for example one egoist may value bread more than milk — up to which point he would make an exchange of 4 bread for 10 bottles of milk. Why do the egoist have to use a mutualist form of exchange? — Because this is compatible with egoism, since it does not depend on society’s authority over the means of production, but rather on each and everyone’s authority to do exchange. Proudhon came up with the concept of ‘‘Dual power’’ — the idea that one can build new forms of non-hierarchical institutions as opposed to the hierarchical institutions that already exist. The new alternate form of institution will come into contradiction with the current state of things and the conditions of the time. Dual power it also used in order to sustain a community, to enhance it, so that when the time comes, it will be able to attack the old institutions that are still in place. In the same manner, the egoists idlers who have been exiled from participating in communist society by entitled workers will need to survive, and therefore they need to temporary build a form of mutualist exchange between each other. Of course, the only thing from Proudhonite mutualism that they will construct is the ‘‘Form of mutualist exchange and dual power’’ — and pretty much nothing else. The egoists will make use of dual power and mutualist form of exchange, but everything else that Proudhon preached would no longer apply at this point. For instance, the federalism of Proudhon, and the idea that people should own mutual credit bank collectively no longer applies to the egoists who are struggling against a future communist society, however some of Proudhon’s ideas for example that of ‘‘Free assosciation’’ is the backbone of anarchism for every variant of anarchism, whether collectivist or individualist. The relevancy of Proudhon is still as important as ever — Some people think of Proudhon as a relic of the past, but he really was a visionary of the future and he predicted how communism dialectically will come into contradictions with individuals — how the idlers will be opposed to the entitled workers. The egoists can take some ideas that suit their interest from Proudhon, but they should becareful to adopt only that which they recquire, lest they cease to be egoist and become proudhonists instead (Which is something that I would’t foresee to be an issue) — Mutualism is only used in the egoist’s time of need and as such the mutualist form of exchange does not contradict egoism at all! Once the egoists are strong enough, they can launch an offensive against the the entitled labourers, and once the means of production no longer belongs to society and to labourers, it becomes the property of the individual — By this we mean, not in the sense that every individual can steal machinery and to hell with the world! But rather we mean that every individual can relate to the means of production without the compulsion of society and the necessity of labour pressured on him. When the egoists arrive to this point, the need to adopt mutualist tactics is at an end.
Even mutualism is temporary, because once the society of idlers take the means of production from the workers, they will have strong productive forces that even through ‘‘the individual act of production alone’’ creates enough abundance. The labour of one egoist will be enough for that egoist to build his own house, to have his own car, to have his own water and eletrical supply, to grow his own food, cater to his animals etc. The productive forces create such a society of abundance, that even if the egoist labours alone he would be able to construct communism in his own house. He would be able to work alone, to construct everything which he needs abundantly without ever the need to engage with the rest of society — This is especially true if the productive forces are ‘‘automations’’ — up to which point the individual can live in peace without being forced by society to labour by compulsion. The mutualist form of exchange will also become obsoelte because the egoists will no longer need to exchange goods of equal value in order to survive, since they will encounter a society of enough abundance where it will make the mutualist form of exchange obsolete.
I believe first there has to be a platformist anarcho-communist ideology endowed with syndicalist characteristics that abolishes the state, in the peroid of Anarchism, the platformists will intiate anarchist construction and construct anarcho-communism. When Communism is achieved it will be met with individualist insurrection as it’s contradiction, the individuals that insurrect against the communist state. Furthermore the Society of idlers who now has no resources because the entitled workers have cut their ‘‘resource supply’’ as punishment for idling will develop a mutualist form of economy in order to sustain themselves but when communism is defeated, the individualist will no longer recquire this mutualist form of economy and this mutualist form of economy will wither away and transform itself into egoist economy. When the society of Idlers take the means of production from the labourers, they abolish the need to use an ulterior form of mutualism in order to sustain themselves. Perhaps some people might ask us the question, ‘‘But if the egoists take the means of production from the workers by force?’’ — doesn’t that make the egoists the same as the communist labourers who own and rule the means of production through society at large?’’ — The answer is ‘‘No’’ — because unlike the busy communist worker in late-stage communism that is compelled by society to labour for society at large, in a post-communist egoist world, the egoists only labour when they have too, usually out of ‘‘play’’ or simply out of necessity. The factories will be empty — they will develop cob webs before the first egoist enters in a month, the egoist will approach the machine that makes bread, he will make bread for himself and he will leave. This is also a proudhonite idea — that man’s relation towards an object of labour, make that object the property of the labourer and not of society at large. Therefore under egoism, the egoist will cook bread, catch fish with a fishing road, using high-functioning machinery in over to produce hundreds of cookies, and once that labour is done, the egoist simply takes back what he had produced at home — he doesn’t have to rely on society’s distribution center to distribuite resources on the basis of ‘‘To each according to his need’’ — rather he can simply produce and take back his produce back home.
Let us take again the example of ‘‘cookies’’ — everyone knows that cookies have numerous components, and they can only be possibly be produced if there are other developments of ingredients. For less complex things like furniture or cooking 50 cookies, a sole individual is enough, but mass producing cookies recquires more hands, this where the ‘‘social act of production’’ through a union of egoists becomes a temporary arrangement to mass produce cookies or mass produce a soft drink etc.
If production in a communist society is not ‘’abundant enough’’ — it will create a division in society, the idlers will struggle against the workers by force, if as you say society is ‘’abundant enough’’ and therefore the workers could care less whether one individualist puts less labour then them — than that means that the ‘’labourer’’ is also becoming an idler as a consequence of communist society being abudant. So whether society is not ‘’abundant’’ or society is very ‘’abudant’’ — the forces of labour will still encounter the contradiction of idleness and it will create idleness as a whole. Revolutionaries go through a lot of trouble to abolish capitalism — some end up ‘’worse’’ than they were as a consequence, this is because people are always fighting for something better, and to free yourself totally is one such desire. It is true, the egoist develop their own form of labour in the insurrectionist stage, but only ‘‘temporarily’’ — until they latch themselves on the means of production, it’s a sacrifice, they would have to go to, but this form of labour which they engage in, is more playful. There are cycles of production under communism — When society is abundant, there are many idlers in communism, as a consequence production will be lower, and this will create a chain reaction, between low and high production, between abundance and lower abundance. When production lowers, the other workers will start banging on the door of the idler, so that you would go to work, to increase abudance — they do this, because the few workers that remain in this stage will develop a jealousy of the idlers and they will observe how they have been working for the sake of the idlers. Communism experiences similiar ‘‘Highs and Lows’’ just as capitalist economy — of course the extent of ‘’High and Lows’’ will differ. Under Capitalism there are market meltdowns and financial crisises, under communism there are cycles of high production and high abudance, and as a result that will transform many workers into idlers, which in turn lower abundance, and forces the few remaining entitled workers to use force if necessary in order to get the rest of the population back to work — this ‘‘societal demand’’ becomes enforced and as such becomes a hierarchical force — however the roles are reverses, — communism is the opposite of capitalism par excellence, therefore communism’s mode of oppression is entirerly the opposite of capitalist oppression. Whilst in capitalism those in hierarchical positions are usually the ones that exploit those in non-hierarchical positions — Under communism it’s the direct opposite, — those entitled workers who represent the communal ownership over the means of production, those few remaning workers that remain working after the lower production cycle of communism, are in a ‘‘hierarchial position’’ — but actually they are being the ones exploited of their surplus value. The idlers who do not relate to the means of production are benefiting from the surplus value of the work done by the workers in the lower production stage of the cycle, — Therefore they are exploiting the workers of their surplus value, by extracting the value of a few workers to account for society at large.
Under capitalism: ‘‘The exploiter is the hierarchical capitalist boss who rules over the means of production and the exploited is the working class’’
Under communism: ‘‘The hierarchical busy workers are oppressed by the non-hierarchical idlers who extract the surplus value produced by the few remaining workers’’
This proves how communism and capitalism are diametrically opposite — even in their way of oppressing others — perhaps Proudhon was correct when he said, ‘‘Property is the exploitation of the weak by the strong. Communism is the exploitation of the strong by the weak.’’
When the workers however find themselves hating the idlers, they will struggle with them, and the idlers who want to protect their freedom will resist. This will force the workers to use the tactic of forcefully taking control of the surplus value that was produced and hand out valuable resources only to the labourers and cut off the access to the surplus value when it comes to the idlers. This will force the idlers to either steal from the workers, or develop their own mutualist form of labour and exchange. Some idlers will even give up on their idleness and rejoin the labour force — but this cycle cannot be resolves, because in another cycle of production, there will yet be another crisis of production under communism, which will repeat this process. Only the union of egoists can reconcile the contradictions of the cycle of production under communism.
In the cycle of lower production under communism, the few workers that keep communist society afloat will develop a hate towards the idlers — they will in fact develop certain hierarchical characteristics in the way the labourers themselves run society. The workers will start to develop a means to track ‘‘Those who go to work, and those who are idlers’’ — and in order to do this, they will start to perform ‘‘attendances’’ — similiar to those found in school, to check whether someone has ‘‘abstained’’ from work, and those who are present for work. The capitalist employers also keep track of who labours or not by some right of a silly contract of employment, in the same manner, entitled workers in the lower production stage will keep track of labourers. The capitalist is no longer the employer, rather it is the workforce at large that is the employer of itself. As long as the ‘‘employer’’ exists, even if it is society at large — then there will be oppression. The workers will start to cut the benefits of the idlers who fail to show up for work, in order to reintegrate them back to the labour force. To keep ‘‘track’’ of workers is not something that a communist society should do — in fact this is a peroid where communism starts to show the colors of the past, — some colors of the socialist past will be exposed in full view. It is only governments and capitalist employers that keep track of the populace through the means of ‘‘identifcation cards, passports, attendance, CCTV and the like’’ — A society of supervision is necessarily a society of oppression — Who is doing the supervising and to what end? — If the supervision is being done by some authority — in this case the ‘‘workers’’ — while the idlers do not have the authority of supervision, then necessarily even under communism, tools of societial oppression have developed. The workers will supervise because it is in their interest, the idlers have no reason to supervise the workers. This ‘‘supervision’’ implies a divide between the idlers and the entitlement of workers. While the workers have more power in society, the idlers do not — Communism is the rule of the workers (Not necessarily anarchism as in ‘‘No rulers), and if you are not a worker, then you will be oppressed by the workers. Communist society in the lower production stage will experience a ‘‘socialist’’ backlash from the past, and therefore it will develop socialist energies within communism, and communist society will slowy revert back to socialism — if the communist don’t be careful, they will revert back to socialism. Just like Socialism in the USSR experienced social imperialism and the restoration of capitalism in the Kruschev era, the communist society might also experience socialist restoration through the development of the tools of supervision over the idlers, — the workers might find themselves quickly developing a socialist state in order to oversee production that was not previously done by the idlers. The Marxists are very wrong when they say ‘‘Communism’’ is the last stage — and no state will ever form under communism. This is wrong, because as I have just shown — Communism can revert to socialism simply because the workers want to oversee the process of production and that everyone is doing their fair share. It is egoism rather that has reconciled all contradictions, and therefore the end of ‘‘history’’ is egoism, not communism. Throughout this essay I have explained carefully how contradictions still remain under communism, but when I start to think about the possible contradictions under ‘‘post-communist egoist’’ union, I find none — implying that all reconcilation of contradictions happens under egoism, and not communism. That being said — we must not forget that dialectics is always a process, and it has no end under egoism, For Stirner, all of history is the individual,
‘‘That the individual is of himself a world’s history, and possesses his property in the rest of the world’s history, goes beyond what is Christian. To the Christian the world’s history is the higher thing, because it is the history of Christ or “man”; to the egoist only his history has value, because he wants to develop only himself not the mankind-idea, not God’s plan, not the purposes of Providence, not liberty, and the like.’’ — Max Stirner, The Ego and its own
This is what we can term, ‘‘Historical Egoism’’ — that I as an individual possess all of history, and that the only think that matters is the history of the individual — The individualist’s history and progress has no end, because the unique one has no end to which extent he can develop.
Who is Exploited and Who is the Exploiter?
Under communism, the worker is exploited by the idler, however the worker is an authoritarian over the idler. — In a manner of speaking both oppress each other, this is why it is necessary that the thesis of labour on meeting the antithesis of idleness should create a synthesis of ‘‘play’’ and why the thesis of communist society, when meeting it’s antithesis of individualism, will construct the synthesis of the union of egoists. The union of egoists will reconcile the contradictions of both the problems of the individual and communist society, alongside reconcile the contradiction between idleness and busy labour.
This type of labour is no longer forced by the principle ‘‘from each according to his capacity, to each according to his need’’ — rather, every egoist can have fun while playing on how he makes bread, how he makes chocolate, how he acts like a tailor and builds dresses, and he will take his labour back home. Everyday, the egoist will learn a new ability — How to cook, hunt, use factory machinery, how to craft furniture — how to craft a chessboard, so that later the egoist can play — every day becomes a day where the egoist is fulfilled by his playing.
The dialectical process is therefore like this:
Thesis of Late-Stage Communism — Insurrectionist individualist in contradiction (Use egoist mutualism in order to survive) — Union of egoists as synthesis of communist society and individualist insurrection.
We have combined all of anarchist theory into one: We have included the platformists, the anarcho-communists with the science of Kropotkin, the syndicalists and collectivists, the mutualists and the egoists together.
According to the third criteria of dialectical materialism, ‘‘The Negation of the Negation’’ — It shows how the trajectory of historical development is not a smooth line, but more of complex spiral of contradictions, according to this principle, when society achieves a new age, it might temporarily regress to the past. So for instance, a socialist economy might temporarily regress to the past and become slightly capitalist, because there is a constant struggle between that which ‘‘was’’- and that which is taking shape. If we apply the Negation of the Negation to Egoism, we would find that after egoism is established, people might temporarily degress back to the structures of a communist society. Communism is not fully wiped out under egoism, some features still remain. In one of my other articles I remarked how using the anarcho-communist platformist system, even after the anarchist revolution, and after the state has been abolished, it does not imply that we have achieved communism in 24 hours — since if we apply the negation of the negation principle to anarcho-communism, this means that even after the state has been abolished, some elements of capitalism will remain and will try to resurface, it is up the the anarchists to implement anarchist construction, in order to totally destroy the possbility of capitalism ever resurfacing. The union of egoists merely needs to ‘‘liberate themselves as much as possible’’ and the more they liberate themselves from the chains of society, the less the communist society of the past will attempt to resurface.
According to Marx, …
‘‘capitalist private property,” he wrote, “is the first negation of individual private property, based on individual labor. But capitalist production, with the inevitability of a natural process, gives rise to its own negation. This is the negation of the negation. It does not recreates private property, but individual property on the basis of the achievement of the capitalist era: cooperation and common possession of the earth and the means of production produced through labor itself.” — K. Marx, Kapital, Marx Engels Werke (MEW), Berlin: Dietz Verlag, 1956 — , vol. 23, p. 791, or Karl Marx Frederick Engels Collected Works (MECW), New York: International Publishers, 1976 — , vol. 35, p. 751.
We can simply recreate Marx’s argument for the purposes of egoism and say somehint along the lines off —
‘‘Public communist property owned by society is the first negation of public communist property, based on social labour. But communist production, with the ineviatability of a natural process, gives rise to its own negation. This is the negation of the negation. It does not recreate public communist property, but egoist property to each according to the egoist’s needs in accordance with the achievements of the communist era: The Metamorphosis of private property into public communal property, The destruction of division of labour, the destruction of alienation, the construction of communal possession of the means of production. The ability to labour at one’s own capacity and the ability to receive the surplus goods produced by society according to your need.’’ — Yours Truly, Alexander Hope, 2021
If we make such an argument, that even a communist society has a contradiction within itself, — then what is this contradiction? — What are the seeds of egoism within communism? — The communist principle of ‘‘from each according to his ability’’ — already implies a sort of freedom — someone that is free from labour. Communism is based on the masses labouring — based on ‘‘hard work and effort’’ — Egoism is based on the abolishment of labour. If communism already has a hint of freeing oneself from labour, then we might argue that within communism itself, there is already an egoist desire to abolish labour and society. If communism attempts to react against egoism to halt progress, then the communist society will experience a breakdown in it’s societies structure, just as Marx and Engels noted market meltdowns under capitalism. Capitalism being a frail system experienced a lot of breakdowns — and through the analysis of that melt down, Engels proposes that there must be a more stable system, and they called it ‘‘Communism’’ — but when Communism clashes with egoism, it also will experience a shake down and if this society attempts to halt egoists from doing what they want, it will necessarily develop more institutions of societal oppression — the more communist society tries to stop the egoist transformation, the more communist society will collapse unto itself and breed way for egoism to flourish, just like — the more capitalists oppressed their workers and attempted to halt their progress — the more it paved the way for a proletarian revolution.
The principle ‘‘to each according to his need’’ — already implies hints of egoism within communism, because every egoist wants to make the world his ‘‘property’’ and the principle, ‘‘to each according to his need’’ is telling him to do just that, — to make the world his property. My need is pretty large, if you offered me all of the world, I wouldn’t hesistate to take it. If the communists are comfortable with the principle, to each according to his need, then they wouldn’t mind the egoists who want to make the whole world their own and all that it offers as their own property. This only proves that communism allows egoism free reign to develop out of communism itself, just like socialism developed out of the womb of capitalism.
The communist practice of to each according to his needs, implies that not only am I allowed to get what I need through labour, but logic dictates that I can even latch unto property itself, latch unto the means of production and make them my own through force. ‘‘Wouldn’t this mean a form of capitalism?’’ — The answer is ‘‘No’’ — because I do not own things based on how much capital I have, but based on how well I manage to keep it and protect it from falling into other hands. Should the other egoists detest the manner in which I latch myself to machinery, they can simply force me to share it amongs them. That which ‘‘ Late Stage Communism’’ has accomplished cannot be removed, — therefore capitalism at this stage cannot develop, because it is a thing of the past, and it belongs to the musuem of antiquities. One cannot argue that egoists are trying to build capitalism in their backyard, because quite simply at this point in time, capitalism is not even possible to begin with. That which capitalism has abolished cannot return back — All the monarchies of Europe cannot magically return tomorrow, likewise capitalism in a post-communist egoist world is a fading memory. If Marxists are going to argue that egoism after communism will lead to capitalist reconstruction — Then why would they follow a dialectical system which does a full-round Dantean circle back to capitalism? — If the Marxists use this argument, they are also debunking all of their dialectical philosophy.
The bottom line is: ‘‘Just as Marx argues that capitalism constructs the cooperation and common possession of the earth and the means of production produced through labor itself. I can argue that Communism constructs the Metamorphosis of private property into public communal property and communal ownership of the means of production. Just like Marx argued that this common possession of the earth achieved through capitalism was going to help socialism form, I can also argue that communism which allows me to abolish labour when it says ‘‘To each according to his ability’’ and also allows me to relate to the means of production in the egoist sense, because communism says, ‘‘to each according to his need’’
I can simply say that my ‘‘ability’’ is doing no labour at all, and therefore I have abolished societal institutionalised labour. I no longer labour as a means to sustain society, but to sustain myself — I only labour when it benefits me. I can simply say that my ‘‘need’’ is the greatest need and therefore I can relate to the means of production as being my own.
Communism already has hints of egoism, and dialectically, the hints of egoism trapped in communism will attempt to break from the bubble of communism, until egoism is strong enough to overthrow communism and replace it.
We have applied the third principle of dialectics of egoism and so far egoism still stands. Shall we tend call our egoism ‘‘Scientific’’ — Absolutely! We can now call egoism, ‘‘Scientific Egoism’’ — This leads us to a question, which system do we utilize ‘‘Scientific Marxism’’ or ‘‘Scientific Egoism’’ — The Marxists halts his dialectical progress once he achieves communism, the egoist goes beyond that which is communist and therefore the science that has more ‘‘paradigms’’ of science to offer is the better and superior science, in this case, ‘‘Scientific Egoism’’ — The Marxist has a choice to make — Either realize the folly of his dialectics and embrace another form of proletarian struggle such as anarcho-communism or quite simply convert to Scientific egoism.
If I use this term ‘‘Scientific Egoism’’ — does that mean that Max Stirner was a ‘‘Idealist Egoist’’ ? — The answer is ‘‘No’’ — Stirner in his analysis was very scientific and materialist, perhaps even more than Engels and Marx, because unlike them, he saw the ‘‘superstructure’’ of society as something that needs to be dismantled because it is an abstraction. Many theorists today hypothesize reading that Marx and Engels’s reading of ‘‘The Unique and it’s Property’’ by Stirner, compelled Marx and Engels to challenge their own Feuerbachian humanist conceptions and move towards a more materialist anti-humanist outlook. Louis Althusser later on, championed the idea of an “epistemological break” between the humanist young marx and the antihumanist older marx, and people privy to Stirner see Stirner’s book as the catalyst for this break between the Young and Old Marx. The Marxist utilizes the same tactic found in my essay on ‘‘Can the Marxist Copy Your Homework?’’ — they first criticize a theorist in order to shame the theorists’s work in public and therefore also dismantling the theory of it’s power, secondly the Marxist alters the work, so it doesn’t look like an exact copy of that which the Marxist criticized, and thirdly the Marxist monopolizes himself on his ideas with a few alterations and then call it ‘‘Marxism’’ — in order to give the Marxist theory more and more power. Before the Marxists critiques Stirner as some ‘‘Petit-bourgeois idealist’’ — without researching Stirner in the first place must also find out the truth that thanks to Stirner, Marx developed in his antihumanistic scientific and materialistic outlook. Old Marx compared to Max Stirner is still ‘‘idealist and spooked’’.
Stirner’s Method of insurrection is quite simply. The method is to ‘‘abandon everything’’, convert others to egoism, and the more egoists there are that abandon the constructs of society, the more capitalism fails. This meet seem a bit difficult to abandon society when capitalism demands that in order to survive one must engage with society. On the other hand, communism allows us to live in a society of abundance, where I can pretty easily become an ‘‘idler’’ — there will be a contradiction against me being an idler and the labourers, which will transform communist society, into the next phase of egoism. That being said, Stirner’s method is not ‘‘Unrealistic or Utopian’’ — because the idlers under communism have much power in their hand. Stirner’s method for egoism was simply abandon society, and convert others to become idlers as well — This functions well as a method which the idlers can use to overtake society from the hands of the busy working-bee worker drones enchanted by society’s spell under late-stage communism.
Let us now skip to class analyzed through dialectics,
On what analysis do communists base themselves?
The communists base themselves on class, because they organize their political organization through the proletariat class, but even the communist must realize the folly of maintaining this ‘‘class analysis’’ after communism has been achieved. Communism seeks to end class, and in so doing ending the proletariat as a class. So, why should we restrict ourselves to being just proletariat? When we can be much more?
The communist then restricts himself by a new restriction, that of ‘‘society’’ — they replace the oppression of class, with the oppression of society at large, and all it’s altruistic implications. Only the Egoist insurrects constantly against the state of things. Only the egoist does not replace one oppression with the other, the egoist’s saying is ‘‘Restrict not yourself, and liberate yourself as much as you can’’.
“Liberate yourself as far as you can, and you have done your part; for it is not given to every one to break through all limits,or,more expressively, not to every one is that a limit which is a limit for the rest. Consequently,do not tire yourself with toiling at the limits of others…He who overturns one of his limits may have shown others the way and the means; the overturning of their limits remains their affair.” ― Max Stirner, The Ego and Its Own
The communists love their dialectical materialism… but then they fail to use it. The Marxist-Leninists are idealists because although they intiailly make use of dialectical materialism, they cease to use it after having achieved communism. Dialects argues that society is in constant motion — the marxist agrees with this notion, but then the marxist argues that ‘‘Once communism is achieved, there are no classes, and therefore no major contradictions will form afterwards that will change society on a massive scale ever again’’ — This is the unscientific and idealistic conclusion of the marxists. The marxist argues that once ‘‘Communism is achieved, the dialectical process halts itself’’ Communism becomes ‘‘Fixed’’ — because the society of collectivism and communism is ‘‘Fixed’’ in itself. While the Marxists argue that dialectics is still on-going in natural processes in a communist society — Somehow the communist society is ‘‘special’’ — somehow the communist society can escape the grasps of dialectics.
The Marxist position on late stage communism as a fixed society is incorrect and idealist, because it denies dialectical materialism itself. Max Stirner is a much better dialectician than Karl Marx, because Stirner insurrects against every other ‘‘Fixed idea’’ — even if that fixed idea is society and collectivism itself, it must be challenge and overthrown. The dialectical egoist affirms, that we must always insurrect against that which is ‘‘Fixed’’ — the unique is always changing and all of the uniques in the collection of the union of egoists will always dialectically insurrect against that which is fixed. Even after late-stage communism is achieved, there is yet another upheaveal in society. Marx argued that communism is the end of historical class struggle, but for the egoist, it is the beginning of the unique’s struggle against society at large.
After communism, there is the egoist insurrection that will overturn and change the world completely and destroy the very foundations and constructs of society. Does this mean that there will be choas, hunger, laziness, that everyone will cease to labour and produce goods for society? — No, it simply means that people will only labour as much as they have too in order to satisfy the individual and they will idle as long as it satisfies them, until they should find themselves hungry again, propelling them towards labour. There will not be choas, but exchanges between individuals to satisfy each and every desire without putting up social constructs that demand labour from the individuals themselves.
Some Anarchists fall into the same trap as the Marxists — There have been a few anarchists like Chomsky that have represented Stirner as a mere bourgeois individualist. We can admire his skills in lingustics and as a master of langauge, but when he touches politics, he falters like a revisionist left communist. Anarchists such as these that deny Stirner, also fall in the same Marxist Trap of replacing the fixed position of class rule with the fixed position of society rule. The defintion of anarchy is ‘‘no rulers’’ and I am pretty sure that having society as my ruler falls into the non-anarchist category.
After the anarcho-communist achieves communism, they will transfer themselves from class rule, to society rule. No longer is it the fixed class structure that rules over society, but rather society itself that rules as a fixed structure.
The Anarcho-communists still have to demand labour from their followers, and even though I respect the anarcho-communists, it is my belief that one cannot be a true platformist anarcho-communist oneless one realizes that egoism must be practiced within the platform itself, in order to destroy this ‘‘Commandism’’ or societal demands imposed on the population. The platform, or organization cannot demand things from individuals , but rather listen to the people’s needs and act according to their needs.
This is one mode of practice of how a platformist anarchist organization can practice egoism within itself. As an anarcho-communist platformist and an egoist myself, I view the anarcho-communist revolution as a step towards true communism, but also as a step towards egoism. After anarcho-communism is achieved, I believe the next step becomes egoism. Is there a reason why we can’t be egoists now? — This is a good question one can ask, of course I believe that everyone can be an egoist, and build a union of egoist, even in this day and age, but I also believe that after communism is achieved, egoism will truly shine as something that is contradiction with the fixed notion of societal sacred communism. These ‘‘Fixed ideas’’ must be destroyed, within and outside the individual.
To understand this notion of fixed ideas, let us quote two quotes from Stirner,
“Is not all the stupid chatter of most of our newspapers the babble of fools who suffer from the fixed idea of morality, legality, christianity and so forth, and only seem to go about free because the madhouse in which they walk takes in so broad a space?” — Ego and Its own, Max Stirner
‘‘Man, your head is haunted; you have wheels in your head! You imagine great things, and depict to yourself a whole world of gods that has an existence for you, a spirit-realm to which you suppose yourself to be called, an ideal that beckons to you. You have a fixed idea!’’ — Ego and Its own, Max Stirner.
The insurrectionist egoist is against the fixed idea, and the dialectics of egoism quote simply acknowledges that there is a constant motion within the individual, and that the individual tries to find balance within himself by affirming that there is a ‘‘fixed idea’’ in his head that somehow denies this constant motion — This is know as a ‘‘Spook’’.
Max Stirner in order to solve this problem, introduces the non-concept of the ‘‘unique one’’ — if we affirm ourselves through the unique ones, we are affirming ourselves, rather than something outside us. Therefore by affirming ourselves we have avoided the tyranny of concepts outside us like ‘‘God, humanity or society’’, secondly the non-concept of the unique is paradoxical, because it functions very much like a ‘‘fixed idea’’ — that helps us cope with the dialectics of motion, but at the same time, the unique itself functions as something that is always unfixed, not fixed, never fixed, always in turbelance and in constant dialectical motion. Max Stirner has done two great things:
- He has used the dialectics to destroy the dialectics themselves. The end of dialectics is through paradox. The paradox of contradictions means that they are both ‘‘true’’ and ‘‘false’’. The Unique is paradoxical, therefore we are no longer troubled with the contradictions of the dialectics but we have abolished contradictions because of a paradox. The age of Hegel and Marx was that of contradictions, the age of Stirner, that of the paradox.
- He has abolished the ‘‘Fixed idea’’ — meaning that all things outside us are no longer used as a mechanism to cope for our internal contradictions. The thing that is used to cope with our internal contradictions as individuals is the ‘‘Unique’’ because the Unique acts like a fixed idea, because it helps us cope with internal contradictions, but at the same time, even though it acts like a fixed idea, it is not a fixed idea, because the uniqueness of something is never fixed, but always changing through time and motion. (For instance God as fixed idea helps us to cope throughout our lives by resolving the problems of death for us, but science has overthrown this fixed idea of God, in a similiar way the communists use ‘‘society’’ as a means to help them cope, to resolve their material problems for them, but society changes all the time, and cannot possibly resolve their problems. Society is in contradiction with other ideas for societies, and every society has to stand for the ‘‘Test of time’’ — where the foundations of society are challenged by another. The egoist relies on the ‘‘unique’’ — because your own uniqueness although it passes into the ‘‘Test of time’’ and is challenged by internal contradictions, the unique never stops being unique and survives the test of the time at every dialectical cycle that presents a challenge against it.
(Note: ‘‘To make it clear, when I say that the unique acts like a fixed idea, do not misunderstand me. The unique is not ‘‘Fixed’’ but it acts like a fixed idea. Just because something acts like something else, does not mean that that something is the thing which it is acting like. For instance, a parrot can imitate the bark of a dog and act like a dog, but the parrot itself is not a dog. In the same manner, the unique merely acts like a fixed idea, but it itself is not a fixed idea but completely the opposite of that which is fixed. There is a huge different from saying ‘‘A is B’’ and ‘‘A acts like B’’ )
The dialects according to Hegel is leading us towards the absolute, for Marx, the dialects is leading us towards communism. Stirner argues that Hegel and therefore we can speculate that even Marx are ‘‘False dialecticians’’ — because although they praise the constant motion against all that which is ‘‘Fixed’’ — they also affirm that this motion is leading them towards something that is ‘‘Fixed’’, for Hegel it is the ‘‘Fixed absolute’’ and for Marx, it is the ‘‘Fixed communist society’’. Stirner, then argues, that dialectical egoism leads to precisely ‘‘Nothing’’ — because the dialectics isn’t telelogical, it doesn’t have a goal, it merely moves from fixed position to unfixed positions. Stirner asks of us, that in order to become completely free, we must imitate this dialectical feature, of constantly insurrecting against that which is fixed. Hegel and Marx prop up new arrangements after their revolution, the Egoist does not, as Stirner himself affirms when he says,
“Revolution is aimed at new arrangements; insurrection leads us no longer to let ourselves be arranged, but to arrange ourselves, and set no glittering hope on “institutions” — The Ego and Its Own, Max Stirner
Freedom is when I eat Communism and Marxism for breakfast.
We can only be free, when we have done away with brothers and sisters, comradeship, equality and the like. We can only be free when each individual is free to express their own uniqueness irregardless of the concepts of brotherhoods, sisterhoods, alliances and comradeship.
Dialectical Egoism and the New age of Freedom
Dialectics as an ongoing process means that even ‘’communism’’ as a system of society is not free from the effect of dialectics. Even communism can change in the long run. What’s the contradiction? — There needs to be a contradiction. The contradiction is ‘‘ Society’’ against the ‘‘Individual’’ — Communism hails an organized society, while egoism hails the unique individual. — These are contradictions — they will clash against each other. That is why ‘‘ Communism is not the end game of history’’ — Stirner argues that there is no ‘’End game’’ — he says that the ending is ‘’the unique one’’ — this might seem contradictory at first, but the ‘’unique one’’ is always liberating himself, and always changing himself every second, therefore it’s a paradox, it’s both an ‘‘ending’’ and a ‘‘Non-ending’’ — Stirner manages to do away with contradictions by introducing a paradox, in a way, he is a paradoxician. What is a paradox? — It is a contradiction but also a true statement at the same time. The motto of egoism is ‘‘Liberate yourself as much as you can’’ — Why this motto? — Because egoists believe that the dialectics are on-going and freedom is achieved always through constantly liberating yourself from all shackles. If you stop liberating yourself half-way, then you are not free, if you liberate yourself everyday — that action means that you are free.
Hegel’s end goal of dialectics was the ‘’Prussian state’’ or the absolute spirit, For Marx, The end goal was communism — Even though the dialectics continued, he never claimed that ‘’Communism can be replaced’’. — Stirner says that the dialectics is always a process, there’s no specific end goal. If you don’t believe that dialectics is always a process, and you halt the dialectical process half-way, then you are a reactionary, because you want to conserve this ‘‘beautiful communist utopia’’ and not let the unique progress.
Can communism be achieved via egoism ? — The answer is ‘‘No’’ — Egoism is born from communism, just like socialism is born from capitalism. Can you still be an egoist in a pre-communist society? — Yes, but you will not achieve much with just egoism at this point in time, because the main contradictions of society are between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, — It’s the reason why my praxis hinges towards Anarcho-communist platformism. Within the anarcho-communist platform itself, the seeds of egoism must be planted, after communism is achieved via an anarcho-communist revolution, and after many years of communist construction, there will yet be another dialectical jump of progress. The ‘‘Individual’’ will dislike the way society organizes his life and labour, and in a bid to free himself from the chains of society, the individual will contradict the ‘‘Communist society’’
Stirner was reacting against the Utopian socialists/communists of his time. Although the Scientific Socialists and Utopians differ, they both want to achieve the same result. Therefore, Stirner reacts against this ‘‘Result’’ which both Scientific socialists and Utopians hope to achieve.
To conclude I would like to say that, I am using the same ‘‘Scientific dialectical logic’’ that Marxists use, so if you think that I am wrong, for saying that the contradiction of ‘‘the unique individual’’ will clash with a communist society, then you should seriously revaluate the ‘‘validity of the scientific dialectical method you preach’’. If the dialectical method can ‘‘prove’’ pretty much anything, then it’s not a very good scientific tool. So either you say, the dialectical method can prove anything correct when it is put into practice, or otherwise you can say that dialectics is an on-going process and even the communist society is not free from it’s attack.
What about the unique? Is the unique individual free from the dialectical attack? — The answer is ‘‘No’’ — the individual is also not free from a dialectical attack, but every time the dialects attacks the unique individiual, it will simply add unto the individual’s uniqueness, making him more free and unique than before. While the capitalist, socialist and communist society are attacked and metamorphesed into something ‘‘other’’ than themselves through dialectics, the unique one remains the unique one throughout the rest of his life, and will always add unto his uniquess. Is there some ‘‘ultimate or absolute unique’’ that needs to be reached? — The answer is ‘‘No’’ because as we have affirmed before, egoists believe that the dialectics is leading towards no goal, towards nothing.
The Marxists will quickly jump in opposition to dialectical egoism and say something along the lines of, ‘‘classless, moneyless, stateless society CLASS is gone. MATERIAL CONTRADICTIONS, DIFFERENTIATIONS, are gone. Exploitation is therefore eliminated, all forces of coercions are no where to be seen. — This is incorrect, (Yes class may be gone) but you merely replace the oppression of class, by an even wider scope of oppression, that of ‘’Society’’ — Society will view itself as the leader of the individual. You are bonded by the rules of society, expected always to follow the line of society and never to stray from it’s path. Materially society will rule production, It is not ‘‘I’’ that rules, but society at large.Imagine I want to farm potatoes and society at large says ‘’No we’re farming for pumpkins’’ — It’s a silly example, but it shows how society will come into contradiction with what individuals want. Society owns the means of production and therefore it gets to decide what to do with them, but I don’t own anything as an individual, I can only own the means of production as part of the proletarian working force and as part of society, and therefore I have no say in the matter. I am still exploited by that society that owns the means of production — but suppose there is a union of egoists, — that voluntarily will come together in their own united groups and decide what best serves each individual’s interest and relate to the means of production — Then we have achieved egoism, because in this scenerio, society doesn’t own the means of production, nor does anyone own the means of production for that matter — but the means of production are utilized upon the egoist’s needs. We need only labour only when the egoist wishes it, and when the egoist wants to idle around all day, they are free to idle, till they should find themselves hungry again, unite temporarily together in a union of egoists and labour according to each of their particular needs. The communist society on the other hand does not allow individuals to idle around, and to labour only when it fits each individual, but rather it enforces that every individual should labour for the betterment of society at large and humanity. The communist society does not allow ‘‘temporary arrangements’’ but ‘‘Permanent arrangements’’ — because rather than the bourgeoisie that owns the means of production, now it is society that owns the means of production and ironically oppresses itself by boding all the members of society together permanently.
I only want to labour and engage with others in so far as it best serves my interest, and not in so far as it best benefits society. If the communism the marxists speak off, allows me to lazy around for a month without society beating me on the back and telling me to work alongside the other members of society, unless they decide to ‘‘exile’’ me for idling around and accumulate their resources without putting in the same kind of work as compensation — then congratulations, communism itself has achieved egoism (I refer back to my earlier statement when I said that egoism is born out of communism and leaves communism in the ashes) but if society beats me on the back or threatens me with exile, then it shows how ‘‘I’’ as an individual have come into contradiction with society at large, and I have begun a war with them. Any society in history, even primitive communist societies exiled their idlers, it goes to show how the individual comes into contradiction with society itself and a ‘‘conflict’’ ensues.
In a communist society my neighbours or family will wake me up in 6 am and they will compelled me to go to work for the sake of society, “labour for society” — and although at first glance I might have the freedom to idle around and do no labour at all, 50 neighbours will come at my door the next day I decide not to go to work and they will sneer at me, judge me, break my door down for being an idler and compelled me go work just like everbody else. If I further more reject to go to work, every place of distribution where goods are distributed at stalls according to their need closes their shutter the moment I approach their stall and they will not allow me to get my daily resources unless I work just like everybody else. The principle ‘‘From each according to his ability, to each according to his need’’ — seems to have suddenly devolved into, ‘‘To Each according to his need as long as one labours’’ — The idler becomes a contradiction in communist society, because society does not take kindly to idlers that take food, clothes and other resources for free, without giving back at least some recomensation in labour.
Just like under capitalism where you are starved if you do not sell your labour, society will also starve me if I do not commit myself to labour. Therefore communism has not achieved a society free from all forms of exploitation. While the communists have freed themselves from many things, they have yet to liberate themselves from generalities and societies. I as an individual will come at odds with society and as such the individual clashes with society as a contradiction.
The individual wants to get the benefits of society without putting in the labour necessary.
Society wants the individual to put in the work in order to benefit him in the firstplace and will close every means to benefit the individual in order to coerce him back into labour.
These two are in contradiction with each other, however there are those who see no contradiction, there are those who seek to maintain the communist society because it benefits them. However, even these people — Which means ‘‘Everyone’’ in communist society will soon realize that with the abundance of communist society, there’s plenty enough for ‘‘everyone’’ without putting in extra labour. Gradually society will idle around more the more as abundance grows and will inherently abolish labour.
The mode of production and relation to production?
How will the mode of Production under egoism differ from that of communism?
First let us define the mode of production and relation to production in accordance to the Marxists,
“The instruments of production by means of which material goods are produced, the people who set these instruments in motion, and accomplish the production of material goods thanks to a certain experience of production and skill in labor, constitute the productive forces of society. The toiling masses are the main productive force of human society at all stages of its development.” — Politische Ökonomie Lehrbuch, Dietz Verlag, Berlin 1955, S.8
The Definition of the Relations of Production
“The productive forces express the relation of men to the objects and forces of nature used for the production of material goods. But in production, people do not act on nature alone, but also on each other. They produce only by interacting in a certain way and exchanging their activities with each other. In order to produce, they enter into certain relations and relationships with one another,and it is only within these social relations and relationships that their impact on nature, that production takes place. The certain relations and relationships of people in the process of producing material goods constitute the relations of production.” — Politische Ökonomie Lehrbuch, Dietz Verlag, Berlin 1955, S.8f
The fact that the communist claims that the ‘‘Masses must toil’’ at all stages of development immediately implies that even after communism is achieved, the masses will still toil — ‘‘This seems to contradict the idea that communism has abolished all exploitation and that we are fully free as individuals under communism’’ but according to the quotation, the masses must toil — If we are so free, then why are we determined by this toiling which society imposes on us — Perhaps I as an individual do not want to toil, or perhaps the masses do not want to toil all together every day, but would prefer to idle by for weeks, as other union of egoists temporarily labour, and when the times comes for another union of egoist conference of labour, the individuals will toil. Under Communism the masses toil because society is a tyrant that imposes itself on the individual physchologically and also by will and force. This dialectically will come into contradiction with the individual who desires to labour in smaller groups or by himself. Under communism, the masses must toil, under egoism, the individuals unite together temporarily to toil whenever they wish.
Some Marxists will probably quote Engels in his book, Socialism: Utopian and Scientific where he describes the different modes of production. The marxist will no doubt use a certain quotation in order to wrongly accuse egoism as a rightist deviation that seeks to rebuild Anarcho-Capitalism in the backyard of a communist society. This assertion couldn’t be anymore wrong — That which communism has built cannot be destroyed, only transformed. Many communists aspects will remain well into the egoist peroid, just like that which capitalism has created, is utilized in communism, for instance the ‘‘Productive forces’’ that are developed under capitalism. The quote I speak off is namely this,
‘‘Let us briefly sum up our sketch of historical evolution.
I. Mediaeval Society — Individual production on a small scale. Means of production adapted for individual use; hence primitive, ungainly, petty, dwarfed in action. Production for immediate consumption, either of the producer himself or his feudal lord. Only where an excess of production over this consumption occurs is such excess offered for sale, enters into exchange. Production of commodities, therefore, only in its infancy. But already it contains within itself, in embryo, anarchy in the production of society at large.’’ — Engels, Socialism:Utopian and Scientific.
Some Marxists will no doubt use this argument, in order to denounce egoism as some feudalist reactionaries, that want individualist production on a small scale. However, if we re-analyze Socialism: Utopian and Scientific, we find out that Engels is tracing the historical progression of how humans relate to production in every stage. Egoism after communism doesn’t need to repeat capitalism, socialism and communism’s process — Why should we repeat these things over again when they have already been done before? We relate to production as workers ? — Why cannot I relate to my labour as something that is my own, as my creation — If I draw a piece of art, it is not mine? My creation ? — Just about anything else that is my creation is mine. The egoist doesn’t want to get ‘’more’’ than the other, we don’t base our value about ‘’what others have’’ — the egoist wants to get that which satisfies him to his heart’s content.
That which was created under capitalism, socialism and communism will be enjoyed and utilized by the egoists in the egoist stage. Therefore one cannot claim that egoism is trying to return to ‘‘how things were’’
According to Engels, Medieval production was an individualist small scale act, but the capitalist revolution resulted the transformation of the industry, the means of production are concreated, production has become a ‘‘Social act’’ he says. In the section of the Proletarian revolution he remarks,
‘‘III. Proletarian Revolution — Solution of the contradictions. The proletariat seizes the public power, and by means of this transforms the socialized means of production, slipping from the hands of the bourgeoisie, into public property. By this act, the proletariat frees the means of production from the character of capital they have thus far borne, and gives their socialized character complete freedom to work itself out.’’
He immediately affirms that once the proletariat seize public power they will transform the socialized means of production from the bourgeoisie and transform it into public property. HOORAH! — We have freed ourselves from the character of capital but instead we have subordinated ourselves under the character of public property — The property no longer belongs to class but to society at large.
The communists argues that communism has reconciled all contradictions — but again this is incorrect. What do we mean by contradictions in society? — Who is benefitting of off someone else? If the capitalist benefits out of the back of the proletariat, then there is a contradiction. In this manner the communist society beautifies itself on the back of the proletariat. The miseries of society implies that I will experience misery, the well-being of society, implies that I will experience well-being. The troubles of society become my troubles, and the success of society becomes my success. We can therefore argue that society is the dictator of my fixed material position in society, it is society at large that decides whether I will receive well-being or experience misery. If society is lacking food, I will lack food but I am not allowed to steal food because that is not allowed in society. People under communism have fixed social material positions because society is the one who decides their material position. If society is doing well, then the individual does well also, if society is doing horribly, then the individual suffers as consequence. Society’s well being or troubles become the way in which society dictates what material position I am placed in. Under Egoism, it is I as an individual that decides my material position, but not in the capitalist sense, because I do not secure my position through capital. I secure my position through my effort, my actions and my union with others should I desire it. Society may be ‘‘Free’’ — but I am not free from society. The egoist argues that just as the bourgeois class is ‘‘Free’’ and the proletariat are ‘‘oppressed’’, communist society is ‘‘free’’ and the individual is ‘‘oppressed’’ — society as a result is better off, while I as an individual am left in the gutter. There is a contradiction that ensues, a material contradiction — the individual who no longer wishes to allow society to dictate his material position will idle around and steal from the work of others, in turn, the communist society will attempt to crush these individuals. These egoist individuals will develop an egoist consciousness which they will use to unite together in a union of egoists and overturn the communist society that has dictated their material positions. Once the egoists insurrect against such a society, a slightly altered mode of production would usher a new age.
The mode of production under egoism therefore becomes a society where sometimes production is an ‘‘individual act’’ — but other times, production is a ‘‘social act’’ — in other times when the uniques recquire it, production becomes an act of the masses ( and by masses I mean, a very large union of egoists that have temporarily merged together for this specific act) — So the Marxists that accuses the egoist of having a ‘‘medeival character’’ in the way the egoist relates to production is incorrect. If Medievalism has established the individual act of production, if the capitalist revolution has established the social act of production, If the proletarian revolution has transformed private property into public property, then the egoist insurrection will transform public property into the property of the sole unique one. The egoists do not own the means of production together as society but in so far as they are uniques and individuals. They relate to production not as workers in society but as unique individuals with their own personal drives for their labour.
The Egoist assumes everything as being his ‘‘property’’ — the individual act of production, the social and mass act of production are all part of his uniquesness. Therefore the manner in which the egoist relates to production encapsulated both individual acts, social acts and mass acts through the union of egoists.
The union of egoists is a temporary arrangement with pre-set conditions that establishes that the needs of each individual will be supplied through their labour. These pre-set conditions can be maintained or challenged by the same union. After that is done, the union of egoists is disbanded, till they find a need to convene again. This is how the egoist relates to production and the other uniques the egoist enages with. There are othertimes when the individual seeks to labour solely by himself, but most likely he would engage with others as a means to hurry up the process of production.
Classes under communism?
Has Communism abolished all classes or does it lead to yet another class?
Under capitalism, the working-class is characterized by two factors: The fact that they are wage-earners and the fact that they have to sell their labour in order to make wealth, in contradiction, the bourgeois class is characterized as those who make wealth through the employment of wage-earners and by the right of their property and the ownership of all their capital. In medieval society, you had to be born under the class of nobility in order to be a noble, otherwise you were a peasant, it was impossible to climb the social ladder of class in medieval society. Under capitalism it is almost impossible to climb the social ladder but with enough wealth, good luck and good connections one might ascent from the level of industrial proletariat into a petit-bourgeoisie — then that petit-bourgeoisie if their business is successfull and they make much profit, they will ascent to industrial bourgeoisie status. Under capitalism the ascension from one class to another is complicated but not totally impossible. Under Communism the ascension and descension from the social ladder of class is a necessity of communist society. In fact, under communism we have what is know as the ‘‘fluid class’’ — there is a certain fluidity about the classes under communism.
I hesistate to call these ‘‘classes’’ per say, we can refer to them, to ‘‘social positions’’ — but in a manner of speaking they are classes, perhaps not in the ‘‘traditional sense’’. According to Marxists, when class is abolished, the state withers away, so to claim that under communism, there will be a system of classes, would be to indirectly imply that the state still exists or is about to form itself anew. So either the marxists are wrong about the ‘‘withering away of the state’’ or otherwise if we assume that the Marxists are correct in their theory, then we need only change the meaning of class under communism — Rather than meaning a ‘‘class’’ that is protected by the organ of rule of class aka the state, — the class under communism in the non-traditional sense is protected by the organ of rule of that class, but instead it is ‘‘society’’ — not the state. As I affirmed before, the more society rules, the more communism will revert back to the socialist state system, and a state might eventually get restored.
What are the non-traditional classes under communism? — The society of Idlers who are characterized by their non-labour and benefiting from the surplus value produced by the workers, on the other hand in contradiction we have the society of entitled workers, who control the means of production, have hierarchical status in society and labour busily.
The Idlers — Don’t control the means of production, Don’t labour, extract the surplus value of the work done by the workers.
The workers — Control the means of production, may cut off access to resources that are produced to the idlers, since the workers have control and power over the means of production, while the idlers don’t. The workers are characterized by their labour in society, and they are exploited unfairly by the idlers. In turn, the workers have enough authority to oppress the idlers through cutting off the access to the supply of goods produced.
The Idlers don’t labour, The workers labour, The idlers don’t have control over the means of production, the workers have control on the MOP, the idlers exploit the workers by extracting from their surplus value, the workers do not. The workers cut off access from the supply of goods because they have authority to do so, the idlers cannot since they have no control over the means of production. In communist society classes are very fluid, which means that all individuals will at one point continously ascent and descent from idler status to proletariat status. It is a necessity of communist society, that in the lower cycle of production, many workers will be transformed into idlers, and vice versa in the high cycle of production, many idlers will be transformed into workers. Classes are fluid — and their fluidity is necessary and contingent because communist society demands that there are high and low cycles of production and therefore implies that those that today were workers might find themselves as idlers tomorrow and vice versa those that today that find themselves as workers, might find themselves transformed into idlers tomorrow. Only the union of egoists can dismantle these two classes of idlers and labourers — because with the abolishment of labour and transformation of labour into ‘‘play’’ and the transformation of proletarians into ‘‘uniques’’ — the society of idlers and labourers will cease to exist, instead a new synthesis is born, where one is unique in his relation to labour and the mode of production is also unique.
Who owns that public property in Communism? — Society owns it, the masses own it. How does egoism differ? — This public property is turned into egoist property — meaning, that egoist will only relate to the means of production when they desire as individuals. The contradiction being as I said before, ‘’Society’’ as a whole being the owner of the means of production dictates the operations of the mop. Under egoism, it is the labourer on the mop that dictates, if he creates something, then it belong to him, (In the individual act of production) — What about the social act of production in a union of egoists — They conference together and decide how to split the surplus amongst each other because it’s a social act of production. This means that since their arrangements is only ‘‘temporary’’ — they are not under the tyranny of permanence of society. A permanent arrangement of production leaves you shackled. If Communism manages to reconcile all material contradictions, then it has ironically achieved egoism.
Engels in Socialism: Utopian and Scientific has argued that society will own public property — but perhaps marxists don’t understand what the word ‘‘Ownership’’ implies. Ownership is characterized through physical protection, you need an army, you need institutions of oppression of some type of another in order to protect what you own on a larger scale. If communism means that ‘‘society owns things’’ — then society will construct institutions of oppression, which means that ‘’communism’’ — wouldn’t be communism at all, if it has to construct institutions of oppression. The Marxists will of course argue that, a communist utopia does not have constructs of oppression, because imperialism is defeated and as such tools of oppression are no longer recquired. Then why did Engels use the word ‘‘ownership’’ which he clearly knows is a word that implies physical protection? — Either Engels was slightly incorrect, or otherwise even a communist society has constructs of oppression.
For instance, if I under a communist society steal some machinery, will this society try to stop me? — If it tries to stop me, because the ‘‘machinery’’ ‘‘belongs to all’’ and belongs to society at large rather than belonging to me,then it has inherently affirmed it’s own institution of oppression against me. It would prove my argument, that society acts like an exploiter towards the individual and as such is a material contradiction. Since there is a material contradiction against ‘‘exploiter and exploited’’ — therefore there will be a struggle, not ‘‘Class struggle’’ in the form of a revolution, but a struggle of insurrection by the individual towards society.
What we refer to class, is a fixed social position, a proletariat will most likely pertain to this class for the rest of their life. Doesn’t communist society do the same thing when it tells me how to live my life according to society’s terms? If Communist society imprisons me in such a society for the rest of my life, then doesn’t it function almost like a class, a fixed material position? — The answer is ‘‘Yes’’ — I have talked to various Marxists and they all disagreed that egoism should replace communism after communism has been achieved — Indirectly that has proven my point — that the society that they preach is ‘‘Fixed’’ and it fixes me in a certain fixed material position in the same society for the rest of my life. I am not allowed to become an egoist and seek to liberate myself from ‘‘fixed positions’’ — the egoists seek to liberate themselves all the time, because it will allow them to overthrow the fixed positions that class and society enforce me in.
The communists halt their progress till ‘‘Communism’’ — they argue that after communism is achieved, there is no more exploitation since they might argue something along the lines of, ‘‘ If in Communism there is no exploitation or division of labour, no alienation of labour, where you can labour one thing tommorow and another the day after, choose to live in places you wish without coercion, do a profession and the other, have a family without chains within this same family and be part of community A and B, i would say Communism realises the full potential of the individual, which completley anihiliates the need for this so-called individualism.’’ — We can simply answer this in a manner of two ways:
Through the course of this essay, we have therefore established two things — that dialectics is an on-going process and that egoism is born out of a contradiction against sacred communism. According to Stirner the dialectical process is on-going, therefore we as dialectical egoists can never claim that communism has abolished all of exploitation, but let us entertain the idea that the communists are correct, — that communism has destroyed all of exploitation, then the result is still egoism, because we are presented in a situation where I can constantly liberate myself.
Whether egoism is born from the fulfillment of communism or whether egoism is born out of a dialectical process of contradiction where the individual idler finds himself in conflict with communist society workers, — the result will always be that of egoist individualism. Therefore whether egoism is born through conflict or through the direct conditions of communism, the result will always be the same — Egoism will tower as a victor over communism and society itself.
The Idlers have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world of oppression to lose!
IDLERS OF THE WORLD, UNITE!