Basic Anarchism

Articles that form an introduction to the basic ideas of anarchism and how anarchists see the world

Anti-Imperalism - Thinking about Anarchism

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Imperialism, in its most basic form involves wealthy and powerful governments using their military power to invade poorer parts of the world in order to impose their control upon them. There isn’t the space to go into all aspects of imperialism here, so I’m concentrating on the military form.

Class & Anarchism

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Why are anarchists always dragging class into everything? Isn’t class struggle something more at home in a history book than in Celtic Tiger Ireland? After all you don’t see too many downtrodden workers wandering around in donkey jackets, cloth caps and heavy boots.

State authority - Thinking about Anarchism

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Mary Harney has banned the sale of magic mushrooms!! In a decision taken in record-quick time, Harney and her government colleagues decided that they couldn’t have us all going around sampling mind-altering fungi and maybe even enjoying them. More importantly the decision was made that we couldn’t be trusted to decide for ourselves what was safe/unsafe for each of us to try. We need such decisions to be made for us because apparently we are incapable of deciding for ourselves.

What type of society do anarchists want to live in?

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Anarchism essentially sees a free society where everybody has the opportunity to live as they want as achievable. But what does that mean in practice, and how do we get there.

Anarchism and human nature

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It is a very sincerely held belief by many people, that we are "naturally" greedy, rotten feckers and, in the absence of government, some mad form of capitalism would be inevitable

Anarchism and a moneyless economy

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Anarchists are usually pretty good at listing the things we are against: capitalism, racism, religious sectarianism, authoritarianism and so on. We are usually pretty good at explaining how best to struggle: direct democracy and mass direct action.

Where we often fall down is in explaining what we want at the end of the day, and convincing our listeners that it is a realistic alternative rather than a utopian pipe dream.

Anarchy and Organisation

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For anarchists the starting point about any discussion on organisation is our end-goal; a free egalitarian and self-managed society. Because we see means and ends as intrinsically linked, we try to foster as much of that end-goal in the here and now as possible. That means creating organisations that are run directly by those participating and that everyone has an equal say in how things are done.

What causes low wages - Unequal power, unequal pay

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During the year a spate of reports have 'discovered' what a lot of workers already know - that equal pay for equal work just doesn't exist. Although legal victories and a raft of employment equality legislation have made some dents, the fact remains that discrimination on the grounds of gender, ethnicity and age (to name just a few) persists and is widespread. It seems obvious to ask: why?

Mutual Aid, solidarity & the household taxes

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Mutual Aid is the fuel an anarchist society will run on. It is also what keeps capitalist society going in spite of all the hardship, greed, and exploitation that exists. Like all good ideas it's simple to understand. In order to get by in a tough world, it's necessary to get a bit of help from others. And as well as receiving help you also give it, not simply because it's nice to be nice, but because you know that sometime in the future you'll need a bit of it yourself.

Direct action, violence & that fence at Shannon airport

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One of the most interesting arguments from within and, interestingly from without, the growing anti-war movement is on the use of violence. Typically, the argument takes this form: anti-war protests are peace protests, therefor they must be peaceful. Further, these self-appointed arbitrators within and without the movement have extremely tight definitions of what is and what isn't peaceful.

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