Saturday, June 11, 2005

Word gets around


For some time now, I've had what I'll call, for lack of better words, a theory of societal inertia and momentum taking shape in my little brain housing group. Something like it has probably been proposed numerous times, but I don't recall coming across it ... and based on the discussion of my remarks on the "feasibility of anarchy" over at Wally Conger's place, I really need to get serious about fleshing that theory out.

In general, though: The status quo is a bitch to move, but once you get things rolling, they tend to pick up speed and roll farther than one would expect from whatever little nudge was applied (as an offhand example, consider the longstanding status quo with respect to homosexuality, followed by the quick progress of respect for gay rights from the Stonewall riots to real consideration of equal treatment in matters matrimonial).

One of the commenters over on Wally's blog, posting under the name "wampuscat," seems to think (definitely my terms, not his, and definitely an extrapolation) that an anarchist society wouldn't develop its own inertia, and that nascent statism within that society would magically accrue momentum instead of having to work for it. For obvious reasons, I disagree. I think that if ever we get the ball rolling toward elimination of the state, it will happen fairly quickly ... and that once it's expended its potential energy and come to rest, it will be just as hard as -- maybe even harder than -- statism to dislodge.

Yep. Needs a lot of work.

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