Gordon Fitch gcf at panix.com
Thu Dec 5 08:23:36 PST 2002

Wojtek Sokolowski:
> ...
> We all have power, albeit some of us are in the state of "mental
> slavery" (to use Mr. Marley's phrase) and think they do not. But ass
> soon as they (i) liberate themselves from that state and (ii) learn how
> to disregard any feedback coming from their actions (i.e. are not afraid
> of dying), their power becomes abominable - as demonstrated by 9/11 and
> suicide bombers. That we all have power is one key point pretty much
> missed in the left-of-the center discourse. Another key point that is
> missing from it is the _judicious_ use of power. Instead of accepting
> the fact that everyone has "power" (i.e. the capacity to coerce others)
> and calling for a judicious use of that capacity - the lefties call for
> abolishing all power altogether. That is an impossible proposition -
> they might be calling for abolishing life as well.
> ...

I can't speak for all lefties, but as an anarchist what I seek to abolish is not "all power" -- whatever that means -- but the situation in which human society is dominated by coercive institutions. One may argue, of course, that they are necessary, but in doing so one might want to pay attention to the opposed arguments instead of mischaracterizing them, and with an extremely broad brush randomly applied at that.

-- Gordon

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