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Will communism have prisons?

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fort-da game
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Aug 13 2007 10:08
Jack wrote:
So what, we should all try and marry paedophiles? roll eyes

Are you shaking your dreadlocks at me? Because this seems like more anarcho-compensatory angst, and liberal-turned nasty kneejerkism – what do you suggest, that we divorce them? In fact the more I think about this the more marriage seems the best option – after all rechannelling rituals of this type do form the core of NLP and CBT... although I think there also needs to be some form of transference. If we consider the role of Norman Wisdom in Albania and compare it with say, the role of Saint-Juste then it is clear that communism has the choice between static absurdist rituals of mild humiliation or a spiralling progress of rationalised moral terror, or put another way the choice is between binding to social codes through either harmless irrationality, accepting we are all Other, or a persecutory instrumentalism.

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Aug 13 2007 10:12
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In effect, cantdocartwheels, Jack and all those making pro-prison statements are advocating a form of hippy-trail reggae-capitalism with an added workerist dimension

Why can't you get it though your thick head that very few have actually argued for prisons as we know them today? Fucking knee-jerk reactions to the word prison, when what is really being discussed is what to do with anti-social types (even if they are just two on the whole fucking planet).

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Choccy
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Aug 13 2007 18:37

Definitely need jails for sickos like this
He wanted the age of consent lowered to 4 - acccording to the BBC radio report today

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Aug 13 2007 23:14
revol68 wrote:
xConorx wrote:
Definitely need jails for sickos like this
He wanted the age of consent lowered to 4 - acccording to the BBC radio report today

LOL it's funny though that they actually want an age of consent at 4. I mean how did they come to that age?

"I reckon it should be 5, anything below that is just fucking sick! I'm not going to be in an organisation that promotes the abuse of children!"

"Well what about that wee girl you were sitting on the swongs with the other day, she wasn't in primary school yet, she was definately not 5!"

"You think? I assumed she was atleast 5, she was pretty developed. Alright then what about 4 as the age of consent?"

"yeah that sounds fair enough, fucking anyone younger than that is just soo wrong!".

But wasn't there sopme studies that showed there was some really mental dynamics between paedos in prisons? Like that some of them rationalise their own actions relative to those of other nonces, like "at least mine were all over the age of 8" type shit.

RedHughs
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Aug 14 2007 07:21
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Why can't you get it though your thick head that very few have actually argued for prisons as we know them today? Fucking knee-jerk reactions to the word prison, when what is really being discussed is what to do with anti-social types (even if they are just two on the whole fucking planet).

I don't get that at all. I mostly get that a lot of folks blabbering about scare stories fed to them by media about "sickos". One might think that those identifying as communists would be a skeptical of the attitude mainstream media feeds us. But one would think wrong, it seems.

Sicko, Sickos, Sickos, get the sickos, we hate the sickos, have you heard of the even more horrible sickos. Wow, your level of insight boggles the mind.

I find y'all a bit on the sick side, as it happens but its a matter of taste.

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Joseph Kay
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Aug 14 2007 08:00
revol68 wrote:
i know alot of murderers, rapists, Jack and other anti social cunts like to paint themselves in a good light by banging on about hating paedo's.

i believe the term is "fixed."

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Khawaga
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Aug 14 2007 08:08
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I don't get that at all. I mostly get that a lot of folks blabbering about scare stories fed to them by media about "sickos". One might think that those identifying as communists would be a skeptical of the attitude mainstream media feeds us. But one would think wrong, it seems.

Sicko, Sickos, Sickos, get the sickos, we hate the sickos, have you heard of the even more horrible sickos. Wow, your level of insight boggles the mind.

I find y'all a bit on the sick side, as it happens but its a matter of taste.

As Revol said, they're not just scare stories, they do happen. But let's forget the sickos we have today. In a future communist society, or in the transition period for that matter, there will most likely be certain behaviours and actions that will be considered morally wrong, sometimes abhorrent. The question is what to do with those types, and just saying that there won't be any problems come communism, is just feeble.

RedHughs
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Aug 14 2007 18:31
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As Revol said, they're not just scare stories, they do happen. But let's forget the sickos we have today. In a future communist society, or in the transition period for that matter, there will most likely be certain behaviours and actions that will be considered morally wrong, sometimes abhorrent. The question is what to do with those types, and just saying that there won't be any problems come communism, is just feeble.

It isn't particular feeble to say that you won't have formalized structures to deal with events which are relatively rare. As folks have pointed out, making a prison a permanent institution would involve making police, guards and courts permanent and thus maintain the core essence of the state - a monopoly on force and violence.

If anti-social acts are truly rare under communism, then the process of dealing with them could be on as-needed basis. This as-needed basis doesn't particular imply that people would stupid - something like a trial using logic and standards of evidence could certainly be organized under the rare circumstance someone was accused of some truly heinous act.

As has been pointed out, most violence involves specific circumstances that isn't too likely to be repeated - banishment is a logical option. If, in a world where there is little to no violence, someone kills and wants to kill again, the simplest solution in my book is executing them. It would certainly be easier than creating a jail system just for a small number of exceptionally horrible people and keeping someone confined for the rest of their lives is in many ways more cruel than just killing them right there.

So my solution to the really exceptional cases is death - is that namby-pamby enough for you?

But all this is just speculation about how a communist society might work. The main point is the lack of INSTITUTIONS of control where all the situations requiring control would be solved on a relatively ad-hoc basis since they would relative rare. That is the answer for everything from crime to people refusing to work to people forming two groups and making war on each other.

And I absolutely hear many of you libcom'ers approaching things in terms of "what if people don't behave" - we'll have to create democratic institutions of control and repression. It is this workerist jabber where a society nearly like the present one will be maintained by a fairer and more democratic state - what if kids speed? You mean to have private automobiles as a dominant form of transportation, you haven't thought about how much to automobile reproduces capitalist relations?

Argh...

lem
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Aug 14 2007 18:40

rubbish red hughes

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we'll have to create democratic institutions of control and repression

yes rather than death camps roll eyes

it's more oppressive to the majority to kill minority offenders than imprison them IMO. which sets you back to 'no norms or laws' - which is barbarism i'm afraid.

eta: to be clearer: i mean with the threat of extermination if you break a norm will be more oppressive to the rest of the population than the threat of imprisonment; so the claim that prisons are forms of control is a non starter.

also, i suggest that you are just working from the [un]vague abstract idea of 'state=bad' rather that imagining concrete revolution in living.

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cantdocartwheels
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Aug 14 2007 21:06
fort-da game wrote:
cantdocartwheels wrote:
This is definitely the worst understanding of the concept surplus value i have ever seen.

I admit my argument was a little off-hand, and yet at least it had content – other than hysteria, what exactly is the economic explanation of anarchist prisons?

Prisons produce something of value to a society, ie the incarceration of individuals who pesent a threat to that society, A paedophile poses a threat to society in the wider sense in that they threaten the lives and security of ts members. What is a threat will be determined by the values of the social matrix that makes uo that society, This under communism and capitalism ian brady is a threat to all social classes and thus considred a threat hence he goes to jail, whereas communism and capitalism might differ on whther they consider ricky tomlinson a ''threat to society''.
I feel like i'm repeating myself here though, went over this point a few pages back.

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The role of useful prison labour under anarchist government would act as a convenient means for both externalising and disavowing the continuation of alienated existence – it is a typical example of the workers' state argument, the convergence of a celebration of pure grim use-value with hysterical morality.

I'm sorry mate but i genuinely beleive that if you fuck over other people, you forfeit certain priviliges. Going round to another example, say you have in an anarchist society, someone who won't do any work whatsoever and has no medical or social excuse for it, who is juts to put it bluntly a lazy cunt. Do you thik they should be entitled to exactly the same back from society as someone who puts in 25 hours a week cleaning sewers?

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cantdocartwheels writes like he is wearing Bob Marley wrist bands – the economic underpinning of his argument for punishment is exactly the same as the underpinning of hippy arguments for freedom, together they relocate the co-ordinates of classic reform liberalism. In effect, cantdocartwheels, Jack and all those making pro-prison statements are advocating a form of hippy-trail reggae-capitalism with an added workerist dimension, i.e. they foresee plenty of rum soaked consultation and autonomy sucked through straws out on the beach whilst sweatshops are turning out libcom t-shirts down in Trenchtown.

So again, where are you going to put paedophiles and rapists?

Oh and yeah I assune we will definitely be getting out libcom t shirts from sweatshops given that i'm putting in a bunch of the capital for them. Where the fuck else did you expect us to get them?

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Lazy Riser
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Aug 14 2007 21:35

What if you're disabled and lazy, do you still go to jail? Lazy people should get the same as if they were disabled I reckon.

RedHughs
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Aug 15 2007 05:53
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Prisons produce something of value to a society...

Moron, cop-lover, prison-fanatics, block-heads who imagine that communism means we get more mandatory meetings to decide where to put the humps on the road. This thread and the reactions on it demonstrates to me where you gobs stand.

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I'm sorry mate but i genuinely beleive that if you fuck over other people, you forfeit certain priviliges.

Hmm, I once worked as a substitute teacher. While one might pretend that a "sub" has other functions, their primary function is policing - keeping the kids in the room for day they're required to be there even through they fuck-all to do. And my conclusion is that policing requires violence and fucking people over. There is no other way around it. I actually have met well-intentioned police but the very fact is that being a cop involves using force and intimidation. This is just using force to enforce the laws but continuously intimidating to create a reaction of submission in people in order to be able to enforce the laws.

One might argue that this is one fairly biologically based behavior - violence and intimidation create dominance. It can be seen in many though not all animal species.

So basically, having police implies that there will be a group of people who will " fuck over other people". But this group will never lose its privileges since it will be the very group deciding who gets privileges (oh, except the councils will be telling them what to, I'm sure then they'll be completely cooperative and thing will perfect..)

Anyway, Lazy Riser, why the fuck are you groveling to cantdocartwheels? We're never going to live in his self-managed death camp anyway.

Red

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Aug 15 2007 10:27
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Anyway, Lazy Riser, why the fuck are you groveling to cantdocartwheels?

It sexually arouses me.

fort-da game
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Aug 20 2007 19:41
Khawaga wrote:
Why can't you get it though your thick head that very few have actually argued for prisons as we know them today?

Whilst I might be persuaded that, unlike mine own, your head must be of an exquisite translucence and permeability I still would prefer not to accept your arguments on prisons because we are deploying two entirely different theoretical models.

The motivation for making your argument is that you want to establish a populist propaganda based on a set of saleable principles that could be best fitted into what you take to be the communist programme. By contrast, I am interested in challenging all programmatic policy statements.

Your idea of institutions is based on a kind of backward mapping of future practice onto already established models of processing social bodies. My idea is primarily concerned with the resistance to that processing. I leave it to you to flesh out the valid argument that we cannot have the undoing without first the doing.

Secondly, I do not accept the importance of getting things ‘through’ heads, thick or thin, which is mere psychologism – as if any heads, even yours, could realise the commonsense abstractions of The Programme (other than in terms of abject orthodoxy).

In opposition to your psychologism I find myself committed to, what I presumptuously call, a communist understanding of knowledge. This sees individual heads as mere nodes in the pinball table of social relations... what is of most importance in society, in my opinion, is the relation, the network of pathways, the matrix, the processing, the quality of the thoughts, that are realised between all the heads, rather than the heads themselves.

For this reason, I do not feel that the attribution of ‘crimes’ (or rewards) to single individuals according to some meritocratic regime is particularly appropriate; it would be more fitting to understand violent/harmful relations between individuals precisely at the level of relations... bad things happening are the outcomes of a warped process. Do you not agree that human relations and not human individuals are the primary focus of communism and that transformation begins at the level of relations?

Quote:
Fucking knee-jerk reactions to the word prison...

But this is the point I think. To constitute your thought negatively in relation to received notions involves the development of more complex forms of knowledge, a more lived intelligence – I have made this, rather than the adherence to a set of principles, my goal. By contrast, if an individual finds himself in simple agreement with any facet of reality, that is if this individual has arrived at his conclusions already, in this example the focusing of social jurisprudence upon individual actants, then the processes of thought have ceased for him. To argue in favour of prison, or any a priori social need, confers stupidity on the proponent.

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Aug 20 2007 19:46
fort-da-game wrote:
I admit my argument was a little off-hand, and yet at least it had content – other than hysteria
[...]
In effect, cantdocartwheels, Jack and all those making pro-prison statements are advocating a form of hippy-trail reggae-capitalism with an added workerist dimension, i.e. they foresee plenty of rum soaked consultation and autonomy sucked through straws out on the beach whilst sweatshops are turning out libcom t-shirts down in Trenchtown.

Lolacaust

lem
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Aug 20 2007 20:54

The motivation for making your argument is that you want to establish a populist propaganda based on a set of saleable principles that could be best fitted into what you take to be the communist programme. By contrast, I am interested in challenging all programmatic policy statements.

that's not thte motivation for my argument but i do guess that the sweatshop analogy may be resonabley viscious i suppose that it comes down to technology eh?

redyred
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Aug 21 2007 00:23
Joseph K. wrote:
so you're thinking distant tropical islands rather than secure facilities of some description? bit harsh for family visits,and i don't know how many distant islands can sustain a robinson crusoe - we don't want to create another bloody australia! ;)

I don't know, presumably the horror film industry will still need sources of fresh ideas under communism - Island of the Sociopathic Nutters would work fairly well.

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Joseph Kay
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Aug 21 2007 08:23

haven't ITV done that one already? or did i imagine the love island battle royale special?

ImprovedLenin
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Aug 24 2007 12:58

Ok I'm absolutely no hippy. Most people would at first assume I am a "republican" reactionary because I am both a law student and biomedical science student, and a good one at that! And surpiringly, I think that prisons wouldn't exist in a communist society.

In science, we learn that people living in poverty and thus bearing the brunt of capitalism will be more likely to commit crimes, especially emotional crimes. Crime is a social disease. It is a symptom of an oppressed humanity, it is not 'natural' as people claim it is. Crimes are committed for two reasons: self-preservation and mental illness. POverty creates the drive for self-preservation. Mental illness bred from poverty, alienation and losing out in the competitive world of capitalism breeds crimes like suicide bombing, massacres and rape. No act is ever committed without a reason, even if it is for a mentally disturbed reason. Even school gunners commit their crimes based on their notion of taking revenge on the "loneliness" they feel. When private property is abolished and humans live in communion, even if living conditions are far from perfect, there will be far far less crimes.

In pre-Mao China, crimes were an everyday norm. During the cultural revolution adn the forced collectivisation of the country, many lawyers went out of work because the crime rate dropped. Crimes of property which once took up a lot of a courts time were not very common anymore, simply because all property was now public property. Simply by a change of the system, many of the things that were once criminal were no longer. At one time in Red China, there were only 2000 lawyers left and even these were under-employed. When they were employed, they were usually employed for bizzare cases.

After Deng Ziapoings capitalist reforms, crime again skyrocketed. Prostitution, which had dissappaeared during the cultural revolution because of the numbers of women leaving the profession to be one of Mao's free communist women, went back in force. Theft, murders, rape, all skyrocketed. The prison system had to be re-instituted, and once again, being a lawyer is a good profession in China.

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Aug 24 2007 13:51
Quote:
self-preservation and mental illness.

Plus entertainment. I do a lot of crime just for the fun of it. Whatever “mental illness” I’ve got that makes it such fun isn’t created by poverty, it’s in my genes or perhaps due to an acquired taste. Crime’s a cruel mistress to be sure, but once the calling takes you...

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Prostitution, which had dissappaeared during the cultural revolution because of the numbers of women leaving the profession to be one of Mao's free communist women, went back in force.

Ho ho. You must live in one of the few places where prostitution is still a crime. I think you’ll find that prior to 1980 it was more-or-less illegal and subject to series of campaigns that ensured that sexual services could only be enjoyed by elite party members. Since 1980, government controls have loosened. Yeah, yeah, I suppose poverty means you can get a good deal for sex, like you can a good deal for fast food, but so what? Only Jesus cares.

lem
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Aug 24 2007 14:06

shit man i mean mental illness is not diagnosed because of one is a rapist or terrorist, but because you hear voices.

mental illness does not "causes" crime it causes symptoms. it [seems] a very petty reductionism - we do bad things because we want to with reason or because we want to irrationally [which you think = mental illness]

there is no scientific objective way of deciding who is mentally ill, it means what it means - which is probably that the individual suffers. what next - classing the blind with worms and saying it causes you to eat dirt?

>>criminality is not a mental illness it's a failure of Law [or whatever]. mental illnesses are not within voluntary control and hardly assocaited empirically with crime [afaik]

why do radicals have to blame mental illness for so much?

lem
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Aug 24 2007 14:14

heya admins!

if you want to class mental illness as any irrational behavior then you want a break with treatment diagnosis and the history of medicine.

furthermore you have to observe that very little human behaviour is likely rational and everyone is mentally ill - to an extent. furthermore do you want to say that the more irrational the behavior the more mentally ill you are: what would remain of diagonstic categories, or likely considering the thought being put into this the redundent term of "irrational"?

i wrote a terrible undergrad dissertation on this subject so it would be great to see if your view is tenable to me thanks.

if someone disagrees with you then you should hold the belief that they are mentally ill? why not - they are being irrational to you.

i've probably massively misunderstood what you are saying tho Lenin. but think about it some more and give your thoughts why not?

ImprovedLenin
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Aug 25 2007 00:57

thanks for the reply guys. However, that is where most of you have got it wrong. In the 19th century, doctors came up with the cause and effect model of medicine, where all diseases, mental or physical, are caused by a specific cause or causes, unique to the individual. However, the WHO (world health organisation) has found that to be icnreasinglyn untrue and that health and anto-social behaviour has more to do with socio-economic status and mental wellbeing than indivdual 'wanderings'. I'll give you an example from a particularly 'tame' country, Australia. Now, smoking is not a crime, but it is a dangerous activity that leads to personal lung cancer and a 42 times higher risk of cancer for others. Impoverished people are 35 times more likely to smoke, and smoke more, than the least disadvantaged, despite the fact that they have less money. In the same way, people living in the brunt of social conditions and who suffer poverty and loneliness are many many times more likely to commit anti-social behaviour. In high socio-economic backgrounds however, crimes of non-necessity are always related to mental issues, which are hardly ever unrelated to social problems. Most of them are caused by feelings of alienation and loneliness. Sexual frustration bred by puritanism and patriarchy is another major cause of crime unfortunately, or at least thats what law reports claim.

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Aug 25 2007 11:51
Quote:
health and anto-social behaviour has more to do with socio-economic status and mental wellbeing than indivdual 'wanderings'

No shit? Wow. Thanks for that.

Quote:
In the same way, people living in the brunt of social conditions and who suffer poverty and loneliness are many many times more likely to commit anti-social behaviour.

I can read this in any local charity centre, are you expecting anyone to contend with this?

Quote:
In high socio-economic backgrounds however, crimes of non-necessity are always related to mental issues, which are hardly ever unrelated to social problems. Most of them are caused by feelings of alienation and loneliness.

Aaah. Loneliness, bless. Dropping chewing gum in the street is a crime, that isn’t caused by loneliness, it’s caused by the lack of a good hiding from a father figure. Ha ha.

Quote:
Sexual frustration bred by puritanism and patriarchy is another major cause of crime unfortunately, or at least thats what law reports claim.

What’s more interesting, is the implication it's a matter of controversy. We (as a society) sort of want the world as it is and we’re prepared to tolerate what prevails as crime in exchange for its maintenance. Some people like a bit of crime and it’s not because they’ve been corrupted by capitalism, but in the same way as they like the colour blue. They express themselves artistically through it, like Gordon Ramsay and food.

lem
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Aug 25 2007 18:07

are you saying that crime is caused my mental illness or necessity. it isn't.

lem
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Aug 25 2007 20:58

lenin your idea is at best as silly as saying that anyone who can't run the marathon either lacks training or has physical issues [which you clearly equate with physical illness].

yes crime tends to involve using the mind, but it's a dumb idea that has no grounding in psychology or psychoanalysis.

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Aug 26 2007 03:36

i think we can say what needs to change for the working class to liberate itself from the class system, and i think we can say some things about what needs to change to unravel some other structures of oppression such as patriarchy and racism. but once a new political economic structure is set up, i don't think we can predict where it's future evolution will lead. if you like, we can call the new structure that emerges out of an anti-capitalist revolution "the lowest or earliest stage of communism" and where it leads to down the road thru its own internal logic is "the higher stage of communism." I don't think we can predict what "the higher stage of communism" will look like because we can't predict what the mass of the people will do with their greater level of power/freedom.

just figuring out how to eliminate the class system is not an easy task. i don't think a society as it emerges directly from capitalism can let go of personal material incentives to work. in so far as there is a sphere of direct communal/social control, we can anticipate the expansion of public goods, so that more of people's desires/needs would be gained through a collective process of decision-making. but individuals are different. they have different tastes, needs, are part of different subcultures. there will thus still be some sphere of private consumption good production. this is one reason for material incentives -- earning consumption entitlement thru work -- but also because how do you prevent one community exploiting another? the work effort of its members, and the motivation to do this, is needed also to support public goods production.

another immediate task is getting rid of alienated labor which is rooted in the systematic separation of the conceptual, design and decision-making work from doing the physical work. these need to be re-integrated. this would require a very systematic process of mass education, improving people's skills, re-designing jobs and work processes. genuine self-management of the social process means that people have to obtain the information and skills needed to effectively participate in the decision-making. if a person spends all their time doing some physical task like cleaning or running a machine, they don't have the opportunity to develop their knowledge.

habits built into people through growing up and working and living in capitalism must have become unraveled sufficiently far in a large enough part of the working class as to alow them to build a movement that can get rid of capitalism, but many of the habits engrained by capitalism will still survive, to varying degrees in different people, and there will still be a possibly sullen minority that was opposed to the revolution. again, these are reasons for the requirement of material incentives for work effort.

all sorts of collective goods, lowering of stresses on the mass of the people, and enhanced collective controls over the system of social production can help to eliminate conditions that tend to develop anti-social habits, things like alcoholism, drug-addiction, family violence, theft, and so on. that said, the anti-social habits, individualistic attitudes, and such engrained by captialism will not immediately dissappear. things like cheating or theft of the socially owned means of production may still occur.

i assume that another immediate task for the obliteration of the class system is break up of the old state, and its replacement by a polity or governance structure based on the direct democracy of assemblies, in neighborhoods and workplaces. a polity is that institution in society that is responsible for setting and enforcing the basic rules, the overall structure of society, adjudicating disputes or accusations of criminal conduct. because the revolution isn't going to be victorious everywhere all at once, it still must be concerned about attacks from outside, including armies raised by the dispossessed ex-capitalists.

now, it might be that a society that is structured so as to encourage solidarity, thru personal responsibility, an end to exploitation and competition, and so on, may lead eventually to things like an expansion of goods provided free to people and a relaxation on the requirement of work effort as a way to earn consumption entitlement. the size and importance of any armed forces would hopefully decline as external or internal threats decline.

but exactly where a society based on a self-managed, socialized economy and governance rooted in direct democracy will evolve is i think impossible to predict.

El_Borrador
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Oct 23 2007 06:45

We likely won't entirely eradicate crime in a communist society even though it ought to diminish greatly. That being said, any remaining criminal acts need to be dealt with in a way that isn't a crime in itself. The problem with mob-style justice and revenge is that it often duplicates or exceeds the cruelty of the action it aims to punish. That's the concern with revenge in general- the main purpose is to fulfill the immediate emotional desires of those who feel victimized with no regard for other people- and that could be said of crime as well. Of course the idea of capital punishment is similar- it essentially takes an action that is generally considered to be repugnant (that is, taking a life) and legitimises it by using all of the grand-sounding rhetoric you expect to find where power is centralised. But at the heart of the matter there's very little difference between execution and murder- just a bigger budget is all. Neither the cold-blooded murderer nor the executioner are in immediate danger from their victims, so they cannot claim to be using self-defence.

Our current prison systems, run for profit and designed to abuse their inmates, seem to create more crimes than they prevent. Solitary confinement drives one insane and sharing a cell with other criminals teaches you how to be a better one. Facing the abuse of hostile guards and inmates alike will probably result in inmates being released in a sorrier state than they went in.

So how to deal with crimes under anarchism? Overall the focus needs to be on rehabilitation, reconcilliation, and the reacceptance of the individual into society. The rehabilitation effort would need to be suited towards the needs and temprament of each person involved. A standard bureaucratic procedure would be useless. I suggest that individual criminals who are an unreformable (if it is even possible for someone to be unchangingly evil) danger to society be given a monastic (for want of a better term) lifestyle that involves as much human interaction (with counsellors etc) and productive work or hobbies as is considered safe without them harming others. I don't know if this would be considered a prison, because although the offender would not be able to leave if he or she continued to be a danger to others, they would not be sharing their confines with other prisoners as that only leads to a resurgence in criminal tendencies.