Idiomdrottning’s homepage

When they didn’t just leave it in the ground out of the goodness of their own hearts

As some of y’all might remember, I’m worried that confederalist ancom is ill-equipped to solve externalities (such as climate change):

Today I encountered a new argument: that since people living in that paradigm are seeing the everyday result of direct self-rule they learn to take responsibility for the outcomes of one’s decisions, and because of this inherent tendency, we don’t need a plan beyond liberation.

Don’t get me wrong, I know the feeling.

It’s not enough, though. I’m worried that there might still be malicious actors, and that the potential for resource gain is a strong motivator for exploiting externalities (such as drilling & burning fossils), that these two issues are stronger than the inherent tendency towards responsibility can handle.

It’s been my own lived experience with ancom and alternative structures time and time again that someone outside wrecks it or finds a way to exploit it. Facebook and Apple cannibalizing free software into path dependency services is a well-known example.

Y’all know that Rojava sells oil. Driven to it by extreme, extinction-level pressure and war and starvation and it’s super understandable and why would they then leave this gold in the ground when it can save millions of lives?

But that’s exactly what I’m talking about: economically there is a huge incentive to extract & burn fossils, and while the innate tendency towards responsibility is one factor pulling in the other direction, that might not be enough.

I don’t blame them, it’s systemic, we need to fix the system, but for me any fixes (be they small patches or huge disruptive revolutions) needs to put the climate-wrecking externalities issue first.

It’s rare to see solution proposals for externalities within ancom. To the extent that I do see solutions proposed, it’s outside of the traditional federalist toolbox.

I appreciate that someone is trying to think of the practical frameworks of alternative economies beyond just the wishful thinking of liberation.

It’s not as if I relish being this curmudgeonly about this.

I’ve been enamored with ancom and syndicalism for basically ever so it’s not as if I’m particularly stoked to see a problem (probably better known as 🌎🔥) that it seems to me that it can’t handle or that some of its traditional tools even might exacerbate.

It sucks and it leaves me groupless and aimless and adrift in the malström of political and philosopical discourse. It’s just that I’m not good at kidding myself into thinking that everything “my team” does is automatically justified or good. That’s been a flaw that’s haunted me my entire life. But when the world is on fire, that same flaw is helping me keep my priorities straight: don’t let the world end like this.

What I see over and over and over again is the “I’m invested in this [coal brokerage / oil rig / politicical candidacy / ancom ideology] and that investment is my unmovable framework for viewing the world. Is there anything I can do to help climate? Only if I can do it without moving that framework an inch, of course.”

It took me years to shake out of the same mental trap. Again, it’s systemic and we need systemic solutions.