Talk:Benjamin Tucker

Page contents not supported in other languages.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Free love[edit]

How are "free thought" and "free love" uniquely american movements? — Miguel 03:10, 2004 Mar 2 (UTC)


The article says: "Gary Elkin writes in Benjamin Tucker - Anarchist or capitalist?, "Tucker advocated *possession* but not private property, believing that empty land, houses, etc. should be squatted. He considered private property in land use (which he called the "land monopoly") as one of the four great evils of capitalism." Who is this Gary Elkin guy? Is he a reputable source? It's true that Tucker supports open access to unused land because land itself is not the product of labor and can therefore not be property, but I've never seen Tucker say anything about squatting in buildings. I would imagine, given my understanding of the individualists, that even a squatter would have to pay the owner of the building for the upkeep (without profiting the owner). RJII 04:36, 13 January 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hehehe. If a house is empty, his owner left it and he don't want it anymore and he resigns to being his owner, you can go into the house. In this days in our society this is valid too, isn't it? :-)


The article is a little bit loose in mixing his analysis with the article's description of them. It may be worthwhile to work on that --Improv 20:32, 7 February 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I only found one statement where it wasn't absolutely clear that the opinions were attributed to Tucker. I fixed that, and removed the NPOV statement. I don't know if anyone else cleaned it up before me. AdamRetchless 01:05, 14 February 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

RJII's "source"[edit]

I don't see how you can say your source is better than An Anarchist FAQ.

Tucker believd in "private property as a necessary requirement for human liberty and progress." - this makes it seem like Tucker believe in the modern concept of private property. As the source explains, "According to his philosophy, there were only certain legitimate means of obtaining title to property: commerce, gift, or inheritance." -- infinity0 16:02, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

That's the modern conception of private property. It's not your property if you steal it. "Anarchist FAQ" is garbage. They have no clue what they're talking about. And they say they "reject individualist anarchism." That FAQ is not a credible source by Wikipedia standards. RJII 16:04, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

And how is your source credible? An Anarchist FAQ is read by many people and hosted on many major anarchist sites. Where is your source hosted and who reads it? -- infinity0 16:11, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It's credible because it's published (ISBN 1 85637 549 8) and sourced. How am I supposed to know who reads it? Readership means nothing. The Anarchist FAQ is non-credible, no matter how many people read it. RJII 16:16, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The anarchist FAQ is being published too. Also, your quote is misleding. The modern conception of private property is protected by the state; Tucker's is not. -- infinity0 16:27, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Yeah right. Going to be published is not good enough. Tucker's property is protected as well, by PRIVATE defense. The difference is that State is funded by taxes and the other is funded by user fees. Individualist anarchism is about privatizing security. RJII 21:18, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

What have you got against the FAQ, seriously? It's hosted on all the major anarchist websites. -- infinity0 21:44, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Readership means everything. If nobody reads the source, even if it's published, it's not credible if nobody reads it, since that means most people don't think it's worthy of reading. -- infinity0 21:57, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

A lie does not become more true then more people you tell it to. Readership means nothing. Review our policy on sourcing. RJII 22:01, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Yes RJII. All the anarchist websites got together in a conspiracy to try to fool us all! In the style of your favourite phrase, "THEY'RE OUT OF CONTROL!" -- infinity0 22:16, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It's not a conspiracy. It's just natural to want to only see what one wants to see and to block out everything else, and to want others to have the same vision as yourself. The good thing about Wikipedia is, unlike the "Anarchist FAQ", is that there's not an overseeing hierarchy regulating what information is going to be in the text. So, on Wikipedia, you're not going to get the "official" version of anarchism. "Anarchist FAQ" cannot be trusted in any way, shape, or form. It's shoddy work and not a credible source. RJII 22:22, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

There's no overseeing hierarchy regulating which websites host An Anarchist FAQ. All the websites host it out of their own free will. -- infinity0 22:28, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

So? RJII 22:32, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

So your argument that "the FAQ authors are trying to block out everything else" is invalid. -- infinity0 22:38, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

No. My argument is that it's not a credible source because it's not published and the authors are just internet anarchists with no credentials. RJII 22:40, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Then why is it so respected in the anarchist community and hosted on so many anarchist websites? -- infinity0 22:44, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It's not. It's respect by amateur anarchists doing amateur research who don't know any better. Individualist anarchists certainly don't respect it. RJII 22:46, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'm done arguing with you over this. If you want, we can take this to mediation or whatever. RJII 22:47, 11 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Tucker opposese protectionism[edit]

Do you have a specific source saying Tucker opposes protectionism? If not, there's no point in putting it in there, because it's implied by his opposition to government and support of markets. -- infinity0 00:03, 12 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The "tariff monopoly" was one of the four monopolies Tucker opposed. It shouldn't be too hard to source that. Libertatia 22:15, 12 March 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Very bad[edit]

This article is a great parody of libertarian socilists ideas. Is totally USA-centric. A pro-think tank straw man vision of "socialism". Is terrible this... Private propierty != possesion. Individual possesion of means of production != private propierty of means or production. Individual possesion of means of production is another form of common property. Capitalism = private property and private possesion. Communism = common property and common possesion. Mutualism (Proudhon or Tucker economic ideas) = common property and private possesion = Workers' self-management. In Spanish "autogestión". -- 21:29, 17 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Not true. Tucker did not support private "possession", as opposed to private property, in anything other than land (and maybe houses - I'm not sure on the latter). Everything else was private property. For example, if I decided to stop using my computer, it would still continue to be mine. But, if I stopped using my land then according to him it wouldn't be mine anymore. As far as common property, Tucker never advocated such a thing. By "worker's self-management" I assume you mean some kind of collective ownership, but Tucker never advocated such a thing. Note that Proudhon's mutualism is not the same as Tucker's.Anarcho-capitalism
I think you have a bad interpretation about mutualism. By worker's self-management I mean an enterprise that is not owned by a capitalist. I mean a enterprise than is owned for a worker. For instance a cooperative is a self-management with collective ownership of means of production but an artisan or freelancer has an individual enterprise and there is self-management there too. But in this case there is not collective ownership. Excuse my very bad English. -- 20:22, 18 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Tucker did not oppose someone owning a business and hiring employees. He supported the right of an individual to own a means of production and work it himself, as well as the right of him to hire others to work it that don't own a means of production. I don't know what you are calling "mutualism," but you can't equate Proudhon's mutualism with Tucker's philosophy. They're two different things. As far as cooperatives, Tucker never advocated cooperatives if you mean that to be collective ownership.Anarcho-capitalism 20:27, 18 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think Proudhon did not oppose someone owning a business and hiring employees too. But Tucker and Proudhon oposse landauders and rentits, and adovacte a more artisan model that industrial capitalism. Cooperative system as modern social economy, is a logic conclusion in the development of an artisan system. -- 12:44, 22 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And remember: enterpreneur != capitalist. An enterpreneur owning a small business and hiring empoleyees is not the same that a capitalist. An enterpreneur is a worker too, but a capitalist is not a worker, is a rentist. For someone that supports the labor theory of value this is an important thing. See also agorism article, "Three types of capitalists" section. -- 12:00, 24 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Land and egoism[edit]

Libertatia, you added this: "Principles such as "equal liberty" and "occupancy and use," taken out of the realm of "natural law," could then be rethought as examples of a species of "generally trustworthy guiding principle of action," derived from the two fundamental rights." That appears to contradict Tucker saying "Man's only right to land is his might over it." Can you supply the full quote here? Also, you took out my statement that "pain" applied to the person acting. It looks like you are taking "aggregate pain" to mean multiple people. I don't see that in that quote. I think he's talking about "total of pain" to the actor. If Tucker was a true Egoist, then the only pain that matters ultimately is one's own pain. Egoism is not utilitarianism.Anarcho-capitalism 03:01, 23 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Tucker actually insisted that he had always based "equal liberty" in the dynamic of "the right of contract" limiting "the right of might." (I can go back and find that quote, but it will have to be tomorrow.) Tucker's debt to Stirner was primarily a matter of repudiating "spooks" such as natural law. I'll scan those full texts when I get a chance, but there's nothing hard here. Tucker maintains his advocacy of "equal liberty" and "occupancy and use" long after his assertion of the "two rights" already quoted. He simply refuses to consider them laws, although they are dependable guidelines. When he talks about minimizing pain and "aggregate pain," it is in the midst of a scenario where individual houses might, he says, be blown up in order to prevent a city from burning down. Perhaps Tucker is not a "true Egoist," by your definition. It's likely that Stirner wasn't either. In any event, Tucker is obviously concerned with more than just the individual ego of some atomistic individual. Libertatia 17:26, 23 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Stirner was most definitely an Egoist. Utilitarianism is not egoistic. Utilitarianism says to maximize good consequences for a population as a whole. A Egoist does and advocates whatever maximizes good consequences for himself. From the quotes you're giving me, it's not clear whether Tucker was a utilitarian or an Egoist. A utilitarian would do what is "for the good of society" as an end in itself. An Egoist would do what is good for society, if and only if, doing what is good for society is good for oneself - which would also mean that an Egoist would just as easily do what is bad for society if doing that which is bad for society is good for oneself.Anarcho-capitalism 04:01, 26 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
With Tucker, it is clear that he understands individuals as more than just social atoms, and individual choices as always already in society. You apparently oppose "society" to the individuals who participate in it. The content of egoism is obviously going to reflect the individual's sense of the relation of the ego to others. Tucker was consistently concerned with "equal liberty" as a model for maximizing individual "goods" in society. This is a position that can be derived from any number of starting points, egoism among them. Libertatia 18:09, 26 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
There is a difference between advocating equal liberty as a deontological ethic and advocating it as a general rule that would be broken if, and when, it was good, in a consequential sense, to do so - in other words, rule consequentialism. If one is an Egoist then ulitmately the only consequences that matter are the consequences to the self. If one is a utilitarian then the consequences that are important are those to all individuals. In other words, utilitarians see the the maximization of happiness for all individuals summed together as the ultimate end, while a Egoist, while he may seek the happiness of others for purposes of instrumentality, he only seeks it insofar as it maximizes his own happiness, with his own happiness being his ultimate end. While it's clear that Tucker became a consequentialist, it's not clear from your quotes whether that consequentialism is egoistic or utilitarian, but you seem to think he was a utilitarian. That contradicts things written about him saying that he converted to Egoism. Stirner was definitely not a utilitarian but an egoist.Anarcho-capitalism 18:41, 26 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Save the lectures, particularly when they're beside the point. I believe that Tucker was a consistent egoist, following Stirner's example of pursuing one's own concerns above all abstractions (including "society"). He was not, however, a naive egoist, and thus understood his own concerns as necessarily bound up with others. For that reason, the shift to egoism had little or no practical effect on his concern with equal liberty. He would continue to promote the "golden rule" (Proudhon's basic mutualist principle) as long as Liberty was published. A naive egoist, pretending some complete separation from "society" would, 1) probably be, in Stirner's terms, possessed by a "spook" (or three), and 2) would cease to be an anarchist, having no objection to rulers, but only to being ruled. Among the other Liberty egoist, James L. Walker (Tak Kak), held a very complex view, the core of which was the definition: "Egoism is (1) the theory of will as reaction of the self to a motive; (2) every such reaction in fact." He challenged simple oppositions between egoism and altruism. John Badcock's approach is similar. Libertatia 19:26, 26 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'm sorry but I have to give these lectures because you don't appear to understand that subjects and concepts we're dealing with. In order for us to communicate we have to speak the same language. But of course an Egoist would see his own concerns "bound up with others." That's what I've been saying. An Egoist is going to use any tool at his disposal to maximize his self-interest, whether it's benefitting or harming others and whether it's advocating "general," though not inviolable, principles. Tucker appears to think the happiness of others is of concern, but you appear to think that he's a utilitarian rather than an Egoist. A utilitarian is concerned with the "aggregate pain" of all individuals summed, but an egoist is concerned with the "aggregate pain" to himself. And, Egoists have no "golden rule." They have no morality, period. There is no wrong or right. There is simply what works to maximize self-interest. If Tucker advocated "equal liberty" as an Egoist, it was not in a deontological sense but as a sort of weak rule consequentialism (equal liberty could be violated in order to relieve "pain."). There would be no "law" of equal liberty for Tucker anymore, but a "general principle" that he is going to advocate to be self-serving that he will violate on occasion.Anarcho-capitalism 19:41, 26 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You would be better off responding to what's actually said, methinks. I have, from the beginning of this thread, argued that Tucker was concerned only with "dependable guidelines," and that, in fact, he argued that this had been his position right along. When you say that "egoists have no 'golden rule'" you're either 1) attributing some status other than "dependable guideline" to that principle, in which case your comments are beside the point, or 2) you're simply wrong, as relates to the case in question, since Tucker made a point of defending the "golden rule" in the sense of "dependable guideline" as late as 1907. You have bring up "utilitarianism" and "morality" into the thread, and to the extent that those are your concerns, you're merely arguing against a straw man of your own construction. There is, of course, no "if" about Tucker's advocacy of equal liberty in the egoist period. The proof is right there in his writings. And there is simply no question of Tucker, or any of the Liberty egoists, applying a deontological ethics. As for "aggregate pain," the notion of "my 'aggregate pain'" is, frankly, a silly one, which is only necessary to someone who considers the pain of others absolutely not their concern. Libertatia 20:26, 26 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
A "golden rule" would be a deontological principle. A rule that may be violated if violating decreases pain would not be a golden rule but a consequentialist "general principle." There is no such thing as a "golden rule" that says "do not aggress against others unless it causes less pain to oneself to do otherwise," because when you're doing otherwise you're aggressing against someone else. That is not equal liberty. Yes, the proof is right there in his writings. There is no golden rule against invasion. He explicitly says that he would violate the rule when the occasion calls for it.Anarcho-capitalism 20:30, 26 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Just because you cannot conceive of a "golden rule" as a "general principle" doesn't mean Tucker couldn't. Our only concern here is Tucker's understanding of matters. Libertatia 20:42, 26 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Do you understand what a rule is? It's something one is not supposed to violate. If it's permissible to violate the "rule" whenever it conflicts with minimizing "pain," then it's not a rule at all. The rule would actually be to minimize pain.Anarcho-capitalism 00:21, 27 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You have never heard of a "rule of thumb," for instance? Wouldn't it be simpler to talk about what the "golden rule" actually says, and what Tucker was defending, rather than deciding what its character is on the basis of the name?
A "rule of thumb" isn't a real rule. It's just a general principle, that if you follow, it usually works to achieve what you want. Sometimes it doesn't achieve what you want so you don't abide by it on those occasions. The only rule of Egoists, is self-interest. And, consistent with self-interest is to come up with general principles, or "rules of thumb" in order to lessen the load of making calculations to see what works and what doesn't for each and every circumstance.Anarcho-capitalism 00:38, 27 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
But you don't like the sound of a "golden rule," so it must be a "real rule"? No matter what Tucker or I actually say about it? Give me a break! Libertatia 01:00, 27 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

From Tucker, "Land Tenure Again":

  • "If Mr. Byington believes that the minimum of invasion is always desirable, I summon his to deal specifically with the case cited by me in my discusion with Mr. Yarros in No. 310,—the case, that is, of a burning city which can be saved from total destruction only by blowing up the houses on a strip of territory inhabited by non-invasive persons who refuse their consent to such disposition of their property. . . . I hold, then, to my claim that occupancy and use as the title to land is not vitiated by the fact that it is a rule which, like all others, must be sometimes trodden underfoot."

From Tucker, "The Land Occupancy Problem" (Liberty, Mar 9, 1895, p. 2.)

  • "...courts, even in an Egoistic community, will not decide against liberty, however great the emergency, unless such a decision would be for the good of society.... I have not hinted that any non-invasive occupant should be ousted, except in an emergency where imperative social necessity commands it." Seems to me you're jumping at shadows. Libertatia 00:36, 27 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The debate with Yarros and Byington was long-running, and Tucker left little question what his position was. Libertatia 18:25, 23 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Benjamin Tucker and Socialism[edit]

It is well-known that Benjamin Tucker is considered a socialist by most socialist historians and philosophers. The only people who don't consider him a socialist are right-wing libertarians and anarcho-capitalists. It does not matter whether anarcho-capitalists or right-wing libertarians consider him a "socialist" or not, what matters is that Tucker considered himself one. Just like it doesn't matter that some people don't consider Murray Rothboard "left-wing", what matters is that Murray Rothbard considered himself to the Left. Full Shunyata 23:02, 22 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

If you want more proof that Tucker is not the only person who considered himself a socailist, you can look at the archives. He is listed there along with other notable socialists in modern history and has archives dedicated to him. And if you want further proof, Tucker is listed in the libertarian socialism article: Full Shunyata 23:12, 22 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Actually, it does matter. Left&Right and socialist are all established terms, if their statements do not fit the definitions of those terms, then they do not fall under those categories. Therefore considering Tucker's view on property rights, making sure that all people have their own means of production and are in full control of it, makes Tucker a socialist. And Rothbard's views on property rights and social hierarchy make Rothbard right-wing. What rothbard wants to make you believe is irrelevant. --Voidkom (talk) 22:41, 19 January 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Spurious Edits[edit]

User:Vision Thing and User:Intangible2.0 seem to keep taking out all of Benjmain Tucker's references to socialism and all of his references to workers. There is no reason to take out sourced and referenced material, especially when the quotes come from Benjamin Tucker himself. Explain youselves or I'm taking this to the Admins to see if they are okay with taking out referenced material from the person the article is about. As you can see, I already attempted to discuss this subject earlier and neither of you responded. Full Shunyata 20:49, 24 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

And you have some never to claim that I am engaging in "Original Research" by quoting Benjamin Tucker himself on Benjamin Tucker's own views. How in the world is quoting Benjmain Tucker on Benjamin Tucker "original research"? I suppose Victor Yarros knows more about Benjamin Tucker than Benjamin Tucker knows about himself? Anyway, it takes a lot of nerve for you to claim I'm engaging in OR when you are keeping in Wendy McElroy's quote (that the meaning of 'socialism' has "changed over time").
1) Wendy McElroy is an anarcho-capitalist. Thus her opinion on socialism will be biased right off the bat.
2) Wendy McElroy is a single individual with no certification for her claims on socialism to be seen as objective or academic. Her words are simply her own. There is no reason why her view that "the meaning of socialism has changed over time" should be seen as anything other than her own personal opinion. Not a fact.
The fact that you don't consider Benjamin Tucker a socailist is not a valid reason to take out referenced material from the person in question. Especially when the referenced material is directly out of the mouth of the person in question themself. Benjamin Tucker considered himself a socialist, he is considered a socailist by many modern-day socailists (as the archive shows), and he made many pro-working class/pro-labor statements (which you seem to keep deleting because it contradicts the anarcho-capitalist historical revision of Tucker as an anarcho-capitalist prototype who simply adhered to faulty Labor Theory of Value beliefs). Wikipedia is not a source to push anarcho-capitalism or right-wing libertarian POV. Go to the LibertarianWiki if you want a pro-anarcho-capitalist/pro-libertarian capitalist online encyclopedia. Keep it off of Wikipedia or else I will alert the Admins of your policy violations. Including your Wiki edit-stalking. Full Shunyata 09:12, 25 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I cannot see how you can make a claim of Tucker being "memorable figure in socialist history" with a reference to Tucker being listed in the archives. Intangible2.0 11:38, 25 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The link to is evidence that Tucker is remembered as an influential socialist amongst many socialists today. Even amongst non-anarchistic ones. I don't see what's so hard about that concept to grasp. Wendy McElroy and Victor Yarros are no more legitimate sources than or An Anarchist FAQ. Full Shunyata 15:48, 25 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Also read Wikipedia:No_original_research#Primary.2C_secondary.2C_and_tertiary_sources. One should only use quotes of Tucker himself in a descriptive way, to illustrate a point made from a secondary source. Intangible2.0 11:51, 25 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The quotes from Tucker are used in a descriptive way. They are describing his views on Anarchism and his views on the various topics discussed in the paragraphs I put them in. For instance, I quoted his take on labor unions because labor unions were the topic at hand in the paragraph I inserted the quotes. The first couple of sentences in that paragraph claimed that Tucker was opposed to labor union actions. Which is not entirely true as can be seen from his own words in support of labor unions. And very few of my quotes are from secondary sources, many are directly from Tucker. What makes Victor Yarros and Wendy McElroy so authorotative on the subject? Are they God? Are they more authoritative on the subject of Benjamin Tucker than Benjamin Tucker himself? Full Shunyata 15:48, 25 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And since we are talking about sources: "In relationship to communism and socialism, the two dominant social experiments of the nineteenth century, Tucker took an equally dim view. He saw both of these movements as representatives of greater social control and repression rather than movements which would free men from authority." (Dale Johnston, An American Anarchist: The Individualist Anarchism of Benjamin R. Tucker, p. 103)
"In Anarchism we have the extreme antithesis of socialism and communism." (Herbert Osgood, Scientific Anarchism, referenced by Johnston)
"Tucker saw all forms of socialism as consolidation of authority rather than dispersion of authority" (Dale Johnston, p. 104)
Intangible2.0 12:40, 25 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
All you have done is pointed out that Tucker criticized "socialism" while calling his own philsophy "socialism" simultaneously. This is easily reconciled by Tucker's explanation of two types of Socialism: State Socailism and Anarchism (which he contrasts as Authority and Liberty; Rome and Reason). His criticism of socialism were aimed at State Socialism, while his embracing of socialism was an embracement of Anarchism. He called both State Socialism and Anarchism "Socialism". He even considered them the "two types of Socialism". This is not hard to grasp, you are simply being stubborn by playing word games and taking out selective quotes. You throw up quotes where he condenmed socailism (Why the hell did you even bring up Communism? Since when were Socialism and Communism the same thing? One does not need to be a Communist to be a Socailist.) but ignore quotes where he constrasted State Socialism and Anarchism as two forms of Socialism ("Authority" and "Liberty" as he called it). It is clear that you are being intellectually dishonest and having selective memory to push POV. Full Shunyata 15:48, 25 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Then please takes your case somewhere else. There is no point in arguing with someone who does not bring secondary sources to the table and insists on one's own reading of primary source material. Intangible2.0 17:39, 25 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
There are a few secondary sources but if you want more I can provide them. Full Shunyata 17:56, 25 April 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Please allow me to butt in. It says in the first sentence that Tucker was a "memorable figure in socialist history." The sources given for that don't say that though. The first one is an online Encyclopedia of Marxism. It looks like someone thinks just because he's in that encyclopedia that Marxists think he's a memorably figure in socialist history. That's a huge stretch. Henry David Thoreau is in there too. So is Thomas Paine. That doesn't mean that they're memorably figures in socialist history. They're certainly not. The second source give is page 390 of Peter Marshall's Demanding the Impossible. That page of that book says no such thing. I challenge anyone to give a quote from something on that page that says Tucker was a memorably figure in socialist history. The third and final source given is an website called First of all that's someone named Per Bylund's personal website. Anyone one of us can set up a website like that and say things. That doesn't mean they can be cited. Second of all it doesn't even say Tucker is a memorable figure in socialist history. It just says he called his philosophy socialism. So these alleged sources are not real sources and the statement should be deleted.

"It says in the first sentence that Tucker was a "memorable figure in socialist history." The sources given for that don't say that though." He is listed in the Marxist encyclopedia you referred to, that is because he is a socialist of notable historical standing that they decided to dedicate archives to. Must it explicitly scream, '"THIS GUY IS A SOCIALIST AND WE REMEMBER HIM!!!" in all caps to make my first sentence legitimate? The fact that he is listed and has archives dedicated to him on a Marxist site is evidence that other socialist (even non-anarchist ones) see him as a socialist of historical note. You're playing games by acting as if the fact that the site doesn't explicitly say what I said verbatim means that I am wrong. He is also listed as a notable socialist in An Anarchist FAQ (which is seen as a legitimate source on Wikipedia). "Henry David Thoreau is in there too. So is Thomas Paine. That doesn't mean that they're memorably figures in socialist history." When people are not socialists it usually mention that at some point. At no point does the site accuse Tucker of not being a socialist. is not the only site I listed either. And this is all ignoring the numerous times Tucker explicitly identified his philosophy as a form of socialism, which I referenced in the article. "The third and final source given is an website called First of all that's someone named Per Bylund's personal website." Many anarcho-capitalists, such as Wendy McElroy are sourced as authoritative when they are simply speaking their personal opinions (such as her opinion that the meaning of 'socialism' has "changed over time"). Why is McElroy's opinion any more authoritative than That reeks of POV. I can understand you editing out the passages that you just mentioned because you think the evidence is insufficient, but you have gone beyond that. You deleted ALL mentions of socialism from Tucker. There is no justification given for deleting Tucker's OWN references to his philosophy as socialism or his statements on the state and rights of workers. You went beyond what you are talking about here, you deleted ANY AND ALL THINGS TUCKER SAID that conflict with the anarcho-capitalist view of him. It's very obvious your edits are POV-pushing and ideologically-motivated. You're trying to censor information so you can be free to portray Tucker in a way that suits your ideology. A cursory look at the history of edits to the article show that you and VisionThing (both self-identified anarcho-capitalists) are the only editors who have a problem with my edits. Why is it that no one else has a problem with the edits except you and him if it is not ideologically motivated? Full Shunyata 02:26, 1 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Adam Smith and Milton Friedman are also listed in the Marxist encyclopedia. Shall we add to their articles that they were "memorable figure in socialist history", and sourced it to Marxist encyclopedia too? None of the sources you added says that Tucker was "memorable figure in socialist history". You are conducting original research here, so please stop. -- Vision Thing -- 12:00, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If you want another source then fine, I can provide another one. However, you other edits are not justified. You just edited out any and every mention of "socialism" (even by Tucker himself) and any statements he made that painted him in a non-capitalist manner. It's obvious that you have a POV to push as you aren't even trying to justify such edits other than claiming Orignal Research (it's "OR" because you don't agree with it, even if it's from Tucker himself). You can't censor out certain things Tucker said simply because you don't like to be reminded that he said it. It's one thing to edit out the link to It's another think to delete sourced material such as Tucker's quote on Anarchism and Socialism, or his commentary on labor unions. Full Shunyata 12:17, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I explained all my edits earlier, but you reverted them without any explanation. -- Vision Thing -- 12:24, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You did? I looked over this talk section again and you only have 3 posts in it. Intangible was the one who explained his case, and I refuted his case point by point. Why did you say "I" when it was Intangible who responded? Full Shunyata 12:38, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Furthermore, Intangible did not make a case for editing out most of my inserts. He never justified taking out his words on labor unions or his words on labor exchange in an individualist anarchist society (which he referred to as "socialism"). Full Shunyata 12:41, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I explained my edits in edit summary. -- Vision Thing -- 13:21, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Okay, where? Full Shunyata 13:27, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Here. Look for the edits made on 25 April 2007. -- Vision Thing -- 13:35, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oh, that. I've already explained my edits and given supporting reasons for them. There are plenty of secondary sources. Full Shunyata 14:06, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Also, Wendy McElroy's words are a personal opinion, so adding in a note that her words are her own opinion is fully justified. McElroy's words and opinions are no more objective than anyone else's. And might I remind you that you are the only person who seems to have a problem with this article. For it being so "POV" no one else seems to have a problem with it. Although I have a feeling you might alert Intangible 2.0..... Full Shunyata 12:22, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Intangible already objected to your edits. However, nobody has supported them. -- Vision Thing -- 12:24, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Nobody has supported them? Hmm...Jacob Haller, Libertatia and others have left them in. It is only you and Intangible who took them out. Full Shunyata 12:38, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Non-reaction is not a support... -- Vision Thing -- 13:21, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
OK. I hate the phrase "memorable figure in socialist history." It's true, but the tone is entirely incorrect for an encyclopedia article. McElroy's claims about the history of the meaning of socialism aren't supported by the body of primary sources. The term "socialism" was contested in 1848; it was contested in the 1880s and 90s, when Tucker was writing; it is currently contested. The article should simply state that the term has been contested, and then explain what was meant by Tucker. Ideological opposition to the use of the term "socialism," when that was the term Tucker used, and is the term used by contemporary Tuckerites, is simply the imposition of POV, particularly when there can be no confusion, from the primary sources, about what Tucker supported and opposed. Libertatia 20:52, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Okay, what about the quotes from Tucker on labor unions and his claims such as "the most perfect socialism should be the most perfect individualism"? There has not been a sufficient reason given for removing those quotes. I can understand the last sentence in the first paragraph being objectionable, but the edits have gone far beyond that. VisionThing simply removes any and all mentions of the word "socialism". Even when the source is not controversial. Full Shunyata 02:25, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
For instance, what is the reason for taking out these quotes?:
However, it should be noted that Tucker never considered himself a non-socialist or a capitalist although he was opposed to communism since he believed collective ownership denied individual freedom and takes control of the products of labor away from the individual worker. He believed that individual worker ownership of productive means was the only form of socialism and actually viewed state socialism as a false form of socialism:

The two principles referred to are Authority and Liberty, and the names of the two schools of Socialistic thought which fully and unreservedly represent one or the other of them are, respectively, State Socialism and Anarchism. Whoso knows what these two schools want and how they propose to get it understands the Socialistic movement. For, just as it has been said that there is no half-way house between Rome and Reason, so it may be said that there is no half-way house between State Socialism and Anarchism." [1]

And :"liberty insists on Socialism. . . - true Socialism, Anarchistic Socialism: the prevalence on earth of Liberty, Equality, and Solidarity." [2].
There is nothing controversial about these quotes. And the footnote I added "speaking of the state forms of the socialist systems and the commercial pre-industrial form of capitalism," was also taken out. I added in the footnote because the Tucker quote "Capitalism is at least tolerable [compared to Socialism and Communism]" can be confusing since he frequently referred to his philosophy as "socialism" earlier. And I agree about the Yarros quotes. Full Shunyata 02:32, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
How could he be talking about the "pre-industrial form of capitalism" when pre-industrial capitalism was before his time? He lived in the age of industrial capitalism. If he was saying that capitalism of his time was tolerable then he had to have been talking about industrial capitalism. I don't think anyone should try to add their own interpretations and editorial in the article. That would be OR. I have seen this quote in an article and I believe the writer said that this comment signaled the move of the individualists towards anarcho-capitalism. Anyone know what article I'm talking about? Good tone 02:54, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Aha. I found the article on the net by searching for the text. "But toward the end of his life, Tucker declared, 'Capitalism is at least tolerable, which cannot be said of Socialism or Communism' (cited in Martine 1970: 275), providing the shift further illuminated in the 1970's by anarcho-capitalists." It is an article by Susan Love Brown called The Free Market as Salvation from Government. It's in the journal called Meanings of the Market: The Free Market in Western Culture. On Wikipedia you're not allowed to put in your own interpretations or it's OR. You can put Brown's interpretation of the comment though. That's in a peer-reviewed journal too. Good tone 03:08, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
As for Susan Love Brown's article, wouldn't it be considered POV? Full Shunyata 03:15, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
There is no such thing as a writer that has no POV. Every source is going to have some kind of implicit POV because that's human nature. Susan Love Brown is not an anarcho-capitalist if that's what you're asking. Good tone 03:19, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Even if she was an anarcho-capitalist it would still be a permissible source because it is in a peer-reviewed journal. Just because someone has a POV that doesn't disqualify them as scholars. Everybody has a POV. Good tone 03:39, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, true. Full Shunyata 15:30, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Wow you entered kind of late, but thanks for the contribution. I'd have to disagree that Tucker lived before pre-industrial capitalism. While Tucker was growing up the main form of capitalism in the US was pre-industrial commerce capitalism (at least out in the countryside). However the US began industrializing as he got older. His entire philosophy was based around commerce markets, as was obvious by the types of associations he preferred. As industrialism grew he supported labor unions. Full Shunyata 03:14, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, mutualism arose in response to industrial capitalism. They saw all the inequality it was producing and thought something must be out of whack. Some people were getting very wealthy way out of proportion with everyone else. This is what drove the creation of the philosophy. The thought the state giving speical privileges to an elite class was causing this. Good tone 03:19, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
True, but not just the State. They (as in mutualist individualists (anti-capitalist individualists) and mutualists) also believed that inequal condition and inequal access to capital caused social and economic inequality. That's why they supported cooperatives instead of the traditional capitalist workplace where employers and bosses had control over capital and employees/workers had no contorl over capital. That's why Proudhon argued "every worker employed in the association [must have] an undivided share in the property of the company". But they believed that this monopoly on capital was made possible by the State which protected workplace bosses and proprieters. Full Shunyata 15:36, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Tucker thought that the legal requirement that one obtain a charter from the state to start a bank (charters are very expensive) caused less competition among banks which made interest rates unnaturally high which made starting new businesses more expensive which caused there to be too little enterpreneurs seeking employees which caused employees to receive less pay for their labor than what it's actually worth. If the state stopped requiring obtaining banking charters then there would be many more banks competing for customers which would cause money to be lent at cost. Enterpreneurship would flourish and entrepreneurs would have to compete among many more entrepreneurs to attract employees which would raise wages to their natural level as theorized by the labor theory of value where income is proportional to labor for everyone. Very naive of him but I think that sums it up. Good tone 17:03, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Well, reducing mutualism to Tucker, reducing the "four monopolies" to just one, and then only dealing with one part of the solution to that one part, isn't much of a summing up. But let's at least try to get the part right: competition among conventionally organized banks was a part of Tucker's free banking approach, but so were mutual credit currencies, which are logically interest-free. Libertatia 17:14, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Tucker actually reduced it to just one himself. He thought that the banking restrictions were the most important and that if they were lifted then all the other monopolies would collapse. The banking monopoly was the foundational evil for him. About interest free mutual banks that sounds nice but I think it's kind of hard to find anyone who want to participate if they can put their money in a normal bank and earn interest. Good tone 17:23, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Can you provide a source for this interesting reading of the plumb-line position? As for mutual money, charter laws have always been supplemented by legal tender restrictions, so that the logical constituencies for such associations have been understandably reluctant to organize them. That said, the earliest land banks in North America had to be crushed by state force, despite both charter and legal tender limitations. Libertatia 17:38, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
What does support of labor unions have to do with anything? Anarcho-capitalists also support labor unions. Labor unions are part of free market negotiation. Good tone 03:21, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Anarcho-capitalists support labor unions? I've never seen one support labor unions but I'll take your word for it. I mentioned labor unions because his quote in support of labor unions kept getting taken out earlier for no apparent reason. BTW, I'd like to say that the new edits are coming along nicely. I must admit that the article seems more balanced now than I did earlier. Full Shunyata 15:30, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
They support the right to form unions, strike, etc. Like Tucker, what they don't support are laws that require business owners to negotiate with unions, or unions pushing for state intervention to force businesses to pay higher wages. That would be interference with their principle of free choice. Coming to the table to negotiate would have to be voluntary. Good tone 17:10, 7 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  1. ^ The Anarchist Reader, p. 150
  2. ^ Instead of a Book, p. 363

Yarros quote[edit]

I think a better example of Tucker's opposition to paternalism can be found that Yarros' rather vitriolic bit. The fact that it is clearly incorrect about Tucker opposing "all forms" of socialism and communism, when he quite clearly stated otherwise, is another pretty clear strike against it. Libertatia 21:26, 6 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

That quote is compatible with views presented in late life section. -- Vision Thing -- 12:27, 19 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Not really, late in life Tucker disliked state socialism just as he disliked state socialism early in life. More importantly, the Yarros quote is not from Tucker's late life, so unless you think Yarros could see into the future, it still contradicts Tucker's own writing at the time. Etcetc 00:28, 20 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yarros quote is from 1936. Quote you selected is from 1888, hardly from Tucker's late life. -- Vision Thing -- 21:37, 20 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The Yarros quote discusses Tucker's controversies going back into the 1870s, at the very beginning of his career. So, while it may seem to confirm the statement in the Baskette letter, it clearly 1) isn't about Tucker's late life in particular, and 2) isn't accurate with regard to his earlier life. The Baskette letter quote is, unfortunately, not something we can easily check for context. Libertatia 23:35, 20 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yarros was an American individualist anarchist who worked with Tucker. If there is any person competent enough to give a proper explanation of Tucker's views, it is him. I don't care where we will put his quote, in the Summary or Late life, but we need to put it somewhere. -- Vision Thing -- 19:57, 22 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yarros and Tucker disagreed significantly about critical aspects of individualism. Yarros was perhaps even more prone to controversialism for its own sake than Tucker. Yarros abandoned anarchism, and Tucker said about him: "Victor Yarros, who now parades in the role of a mere observer, was for years my most active participant in Anarchistic propaganda, – a fact which he is now at pains to conceal. I once admired him; I now despise him." (Free Vistas 2 (1937), cited by Roderick Long here.) The quote clearly disagrees with Tucker's own account of his thoughts on socialism and communism—as has been demonstrated here more times than I would like to have to count. It would be nice if close association was some guarantee of accuracy, but we know that that isn't the case. In fact, Tucker made the same appeal to close association in a debate about William B. Greene's currency proposals, in support of a point that he seems to have had completely wrong. Libertatia 20:18, 22 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'm not saying that because of that quote we should delete all claims that Tucker called himself a socialist. I'm saying that Yarros, despite the divergence of theirs view, can be considered an expert on Tucker and that his view should be included. -- Vision Thing -- 20:48, 22 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Even when it directly contradicts Tucker's own writing? Etcetc 21:29, 22 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Just a note of clarification: the 1926 Individual Liberty was compiled by Clarence L. Swartz, not Tucker. Swartz was, of course, a close associate of Tucker's who remained an active individualist anarchist, long after many of the Liberty group had fallen off. But I see nothing in the prefatory material to suggest that the volume gives us any better sense of Tucker's late-life position than anything else, leaving us with the contextless Baskette letter quote and not much else. I'll have to see if I can get a transcription or copy of the letter. Libertatia 22:21, 22 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The whole text may have been compiled by Clarence Swartz, but the postscript to the "Socialism and Anarchism" essay is dated 1926 and signed by Tucker. In it he continues to refer specifically to state socialism and revolution as being mistaken, but these are views he always held. He explains exactly how his views have changed in the 40 years since he originally wrote the essay, and in doing so makes no mention at all to having abandoned anarchist socialism, or feeling that stateless socialism was no longer a worthy goal. If he had gone through such a radical change, wouldn't he have mentioned it in the one essay that deals with the subject specifically? Why should we assume he changed this view when there is no evidence of this? Certainly a private letter that never even specifies whether he was refering to state socialism, stateless socialism, or all forms of socialism, is not adequate to overwrite a lifetime of published material that he never contradicted in print. 00:16, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

Tucker probably eventually started using the word "socialism" in the modern sense. It must have been really confusing to tell people you're a "socialist" who supports a free market when socialism came to mean collective control over the means of production. It makes sense that he would drop the idiosyncratic use of the term. It looks like that's how Yarros is using the term socialism too.

That is all speculation, it isn't supported by Tucker's own writings at all. Besides, there are people who refer to themselves as "market socialists" today, take David Miller, not to mention several modern mutualists. "Socialism" does not have a single meaning, anymore than "capitalism" or "anarchism" does. Etcetc 08:43, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I don't dispute that there is such as idea as market socialism but that is collective (state) control over the means of production. Level basis 16:09, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
David Miller's "market socialism", from his "Socialism and Market" is "the means of production are owned by the state but leased to groups of workers in such a way that each worker gets resources of roughly equal value. Each cooperative decide on the nature and volume of its produciton, and sells its goods on the market. The profits are distributed among the members of each cooperative according to mutually agreed rules, though we may suppose the profits above a certain point are heavily taxed by the state, partly to accumulate resources for future generations, partly to finance an extensive welfare state which provides for essential needs with a charge." It just makes sense that Tucker would eventually stop using the term "socialism" to describe his philosophy because his old use of the term became archaic. Level basis 16:18, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
He hadn't changed his usage by 1926. And the use of "socialist" as a self-description by market anarchists continues through the present. Libertatia 16:59, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It might by some but most market anarchists choose the term "anarcho-capitalist" which means private ownership of capital is allowed. A market socialist would ordinarily be understood as where private ownership of capital was not allowed, to be replaced with social ownership of capital. I don't doubt that some market anarchists today would call themselves socialist but it doesn't mean much. Level basis 17:56, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

"State Socialism and Anarchism" was originally written in 1888. It was republished, with Tucker's input and corrections, in 1911 and 1926. The passage quoted is, of course, actually from one of Lesigne's "Socialistic Letters," which Tucker translated and published in 1887. The 1926 republication is the only bit of fully-contextualized evidence we have of Tucker's opinions in "late life." As such, it is at least as good an indication as the uncontextualized snippet from the Baskette letter, which nobody here has seen. Libertatia 18:11, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

At the very least we know that he believed living in capitalist system where there is a state is preferable to living in a socialist system where there is a state. That is an odd statement for a self-proclaimed socialist to make to say the least. Level basis 18:14, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It's only odd to someone who pays little or no attention to the various things Tucker (following Lesigne, and anticipating us crazy market anarchist socialist types) meant by "socialism." The gulf between the "socialism" Tucker favored until at least 1926 and state "socialism" probably was considerably greater than just a matter of dealing with the "four monopolies." Lesser evil aguments aren't particularly conclusive. Libertatia 18:25, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Looking at the Libertarian socialism article here on Wikipedia it says "This equality and freedom would be achieved through the abolition of authoritarian institutions and private property." Tucker does not seek to abolish private property. This is just common understanding that socialists are against private property. A socialist that is in favor of private property is using a really odd term to describe himself. Level basis 18:27, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Four out of five sock-puppets surveyed get their ideas about language solely from dictionaries or other equally poor sources. Me, I think that is weird. Libertatia 18:35, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I didn't get this from a dictionary. It's from the Libertarian socialism article on Wikipedia. Presumably that definition is the result of a consensus. There is a wide consensus that libertarian socialists are opposed to private property. Tucker does not fit in with that definition of libertarian socialism. Level basis 18:37, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hahahahahaha. Yes. Yes! And there is a "wide consensus" that anarchists are dangerous, bomb-throwing, Starbucks-smashing lunatics (though, fortunately, that consensus has less purchase here on Wikipedia.) Fortunately, we are not tied to these consensuses. We are, in fact, obliged to work from evidence in the literature, and that evidence is pretty conclusive. Two socialisms in 1849, in 1887, in 1888, in 1911, in 1926, in the present day. If they're POV-pushing on libertarian socialism, why don't you straighten them out? Can't let the commies kick us around. Libertatia 18:49, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If Tucker will allow people to contract for "usury" then how is he any different from anarcho-capitalist? Anarcho-capitalists will also allow people to contract for "usury." They just don't call it usury. Level basis 18:46, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Good libertarians don't forbid. But Tucker also promoted projects that would make such contracts unnecessary and unappealing. Libertatia 18:50, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
So in effect he's no different than an anarcho-capitalist. He just thinks "usury" will disappear while anarcho-capitalists don't think it will. Who's right? I say that anarcho-capitalists. Unless you outlaw "usury," it will always exist. Level basis 18:53, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Well, obviously he's different from those anarcho-capitalists who simply take "usury" as a natural phenomenon, thus justified, and don't worry their pretty little heads any more about it. But that sort of anarcho-capitalist usually can't tell the difference between secured and unsecured credit, etc., and isn't very interesting to debate with. Libertatia 19:01, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Whether it's "natural" or not, what's wrong with it? So what if the next guy makes more money than me for the same amount of labor? Why would that be bad? Tucker has to come back to the labor theory of value to try to justify that position. But it just doesn't work. Another thing I find odd is why it would be immoral to charge interest of a loan. If you are looking at ethics it seems to me that it would be even simply common curteousy to pay someone for their services of loaning their money. To actually complain paying interest is bizarre. I would expect people to have the common decency to voluntarily pay each other interest. Level basis 19:07, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
None of your "objections" have anything to do with the theories you're supposedly objecting to. Life is too short to deal with this stuff at the level of slogans and "common sense." Libertatia 19:15, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Only an ingrate would object to paying interest to someone who is loaning him money. When someone loans money they are paying an "opportunity cost." They could have done something else with that money, like buy a new car, a new machine, or a new business. Not having these things is the opportunity cost. The least a person can do is compensate the lender for his opportunity costs. Now that's real mutualism. Level basis 19:23, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
To what specific argument of Tucker's do you think you are responding? So far, this is all non sequitor. Libertatia 19:28, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
To the claim from Tucker that "usury" is "wrong in principle and opposed to human well-being." Level basis 19:48, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Ah. When you prattle on about "ingrates" and such, it's hard to tell. Tucker followed Warren and Greene on this stuff, both of whom subjectivized "cost" fairly radically, so I would imagine Tucker would not see compensation for real risk or hardship as "usury." On a person-to-person basis, all of this stuff is very easily handled. But where consumption of capital has been delayed, say to take care of periods of retirement or the like, and no hardship is involved, demands for compensation beyond actual risk are bound to be based in exploiting the needs of the borrower, which is a hard position to justify when you're claiming mutualists are meanies. Where the playing field is relatively equal, cost-price lending is likely to simplify the circulation of credit for all concerned. Of course—and for the umpteenth time—the mutualist solution was to work towards a situation where secured credit currencies could serve most needs, leaving unsecured credit as an expedient for special occasions. Libertatia 20:12, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You still haven't shown that Tucker was correct when he said "usury" is "wrong in principle." The is the foundation of Tucker's system, at least earlier in life when he was a so-called "mutualist." Let's say I charge 100% interest for loan even. Am I exploiting someone? I don't think so. What if I find them to be a huge risk of not receiving my money back? If I am under no moral obligation to lend money in the first place, why would I be immoral if I charged high interest if I decided to lend? Tucker would have thought there was something "wrong" with this. He's making it a moral issue. You're trying to turn this into a practical argument. I'm taking issue with the foundation of "mutualism" which is that "usury" is wrong. Can you prove Tucker's claim that it is "wrong in principle?" If it's not then the whole philosophy falls to the ground. Level basis 20:22, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If you can find any support for Tucker's as a "moral," as opposed to "practical" approach, we can dance a little more. But I think you'll find that even the mutualists most concerned with ethical issues, like Greene and Ingalls in their careers as ministers, remained pretty practical in their concerns. Libertatia 20:33, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I already did. I quoted him. Here is the quote: "Liberty, therefore, must defend the right of individuals to make contracts involving usury, rum, marriage, prostitution, any many other things which is believes to be wrong in principle and opposed to human well-being. The right to do wrong involves the essence of all rights." He thinks that usury is immoral. His whole system is based on that premise which he draws from the labor theory of value. Prove to me that usury is "wrong in principle." If it can't be proven that interest, rent and profit are "wrong in principle," then so-called "mutualism" falls apart. Level basis 23:21, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
One of the beauties of mutualism is that it has been derived as easily from purely egoistic premises as from, say, the Universalism of Ingalls' early years. If you want to characterize the early Tucker as "moralistic," have at it. Certainly, there is a strain of moralism in some natural rights theory, as there is in many of the expressions of youth. But Tucker's concern with reciprocity, the real core of mutualism, survived his philosophical wanderings. The principle wronged is, of course, the principle of mutuality or "golden rule." I suspect you have little interest in that principle. Fortunately, your interest does not a system make or break. Libertatia 00:32, 24 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Reciprocity? How about having the common decency to pay someone interest for them loaning you money? As I said, only a ingrate would complain about having to pay interest. A decent person would insist on paying interest instead of expecting others to loan to them for free or at cost. Real "mutualism" would include rent, profit, and interest as a common curteousy for depriving others of the use of their property. If I loan you money, I'm depriving myself of buying something. I'm putting off buying a new car to lend you money. How is it mutualistic to not compensate me for my opportunity cost? Opportunity costs are the reason that interest exists. Since there are and will always be opportunity costs, there will always be interest, rent, and profit. You bring up "egoistic premises" but egoistic premises can be used to justify anything at all, including a state. The dictator of North Korea has egoistic premises too. That's one of the "beauties" of egoism. Level basis 01:44, 24 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Why is compensating people by paying them interest, rent, and profit and not in line with the "golden rule"? I would expect no one to provide me things at cost, nor would I be so inappropriate as to not offer interest, rent, and profit for their goods and services. I would expect the same in return, which is to be paid interest, rent, and profit for my money, goods, and services.. That's real mutualism. Level basis 01:49, 24 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The fact that he thinks there's something wrong with "usury" is strange too. It's based on the labor theory of value. This goes to show just how screwed up one's ideas can be if they have a flawed premise. He has to adjust his theories around the labor theory of value and obviously struggled to make everything fit together throughout his writings. It's quite sad actually. Level basis 18:57, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Sad as sock puppets, as me grammy used to say. But not as sad, methinks, as those who simply can't be bothered to understand how the economic theories of the mutualists actually worked. Are you one of those that believe that capital, unmixed with labor, is "productive"? Libertatia 19:07, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It can be. Machines are productive. Are you talking about money? Money itself is not productive. But it allows you to buy things that are productive. What's your point? Level basis 19:10, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You're just another in a long series of users arguing against a theory of value you apparently understand in only the most cartoonish form. Libertatia 19:15, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
So you didn't have a point. Level basis 19:18, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The question of the "productivity of capital" is one of the most critical dividing points in these debates, historically. The fact that my point is obscure to you suggests very little practical exposure to actual labor theories, as opposed to the kind of thing you get from other Wikipedia pages and tertiary sources. Libertatia 20:35, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
What point? You didn't make a point. You asked "Are you one of those that believe that capital, unmixed with labor, is "productive"?" Why did you ask that? I answered you question, then you didn't follow through with anything. Did you have a point to make or not? Level basis 23:23, 23 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Note: User:Level basis is a sockpuppet of the banned user Billy Ego and has been blocked indefinitely. MastCell Talk 17:46, 24 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

In a letter to a Clarence Lee Swartz on July 22 1930 Tucker himself dismissed what he said in his "Postscript": The matter of my famous "Postscript" now sinks into insignificance; the insurmountable obstacle to the realization of Anarchy is no longer the power of the trusts, but the indisputable fact that our civilization is in its death throes. We may last a couple of centuries yet; on the other hand, a decade may precipitate our finish… The dark ages sure enough. The Monster, Mechanism, is devouring mankind. (he is referring to technology)

As for context of Baskette letter, Susan Love Brown provides us with that context by claim it is providing the shift further illuminated in the 1970's by anarcho-capitalists. Also, using quotes from works written in earlier part of Tucker's life to dismiss this is not acceptable since it constitutes original research. -- Vision Thing -- 14:04, 27 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Tucker's comments on "mechanism" are certainly not a dismissal of the distinction at issue. Nor does Brown's reference to the snippet of the Baskette letter used by Martin provide us any useful context. In fact, Brown's references make it clear that she did not work with the primary sources much, if at all, so her interpretation is based on the academic version of hearsay. Her use of obviously inadequate sources like Kline is fairly damaging really. Libertatia 20:34, 27 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Libertatia gave a fine answer, but in his revert summary VT asked that I address his comments. First, Libertatia is correct, Tucker clearly was not talking about his views on the distinction between anarchist and state socialism in his comments on his postscript. Second, the quotes are being used precisely because the postscript was from so late in his life, providing us a last glimpse of his published thoughts. As I've said before, if he had changed his views on this subject matter he would have said so in the postscript, its a glaring omission for anyone who pretends that he suddenly abandoned socialism around this time. As such, the quotes are not being used as evidence for his views when he wrote the essay, but as evidence for his views when he signed off on it 40 years later.
I find it odd that anyone would be tempted to take an out of context statement in a private letter culled from an obscure collection and hand it over a solid tradition of published work in order to muddy the waters around a tradition of socialism that he never recanted. Etcetc 06:47, 30 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
There are legitimate questions about whether the material from Lesigne ought to be in the article, and certainly about whether it ought to be in a section on "later life." There are also legitimate questions about Tucker's attitudes in that late period. I don't believe we have any evidence that he "never recanted." Tucker had sided with the Allies in WWI. He was far from optimistic about libertarian social change in general. Logically, the "later life" section ought to cover his concerns about whether abolition of the "four monopolies" alone would be sufficient to create positive change, about his disillusionment, etc. Rocker's "Pioneers of American Freedom" covers some of that ground, as does Martin. The Baskette letter indicates something, but without more than a snippet, it's hard to tell what. Susan Love Brown's interpretation of that isolated snippet is hardly even grammatical enough to be useful, aside from being inadequate in scholarly terms. The aggressive POV editing has made it very difficult to simply keep to the facts, but we should do our level best to try, without distorting things with counter-spin. Libertatia 17:29, 30 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree. I feel as though the "late life" section is being misused to fabricate a link between Tucker and anarcho-capitalism. This isn't to say that there are no links at all, but rather that the kind of link being conveyed by the text as VT continues to revert it is misleading. There is a lot of evidence that Tucker's views changed late in life, but this was a radical change that included a general sense of hopelessness about the future of humankind and a tendency to believe that anarchism itself was no longer viable, whatever the economic mode. The way the text exists now it appears as though he merely decided that capitalism was preferable to socialism and thus became the precursor to anarcho-capitalism. This is simply not an appropriate implication from the evidence we have.
I feel as though it is important to rely first and foremost on Tucker's own published writings, that is the space where Tucker obviously represents himself better than anyone else could. Digging up scraps of obscure information with the sole purpose of supporting a pre-determined assumption about what Tucker "must have" been thinking seems to me to be disingenuous. This includes using a Yarros quote to summarize Tucker's views when the quote itself contradicts Tucker's writing, and Yarros himself had by this point already given up on anarchism and had a big falling out with Tucker. Etcetc 21:14, 31 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Neither of you addressed my concern about using quotes from work written in earlier part of Tucker's life to dismiss what he wrote latter (1930s). If you insist on including his view from Postscript, it should precede his latter comments. -- Vision Thing -- 14:03, 3 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Since the "comments" you are referring to were not published but from a private letter, and there is absolutely no context to them (they being buried in a collection in Illinois), and it is completely ambiguous as to whether he meant state socialism or stateless socialism or both, it makes a lot more sense to use a passage from an article he has postscripted only a few years before, published, and made his views unambiguously clear. Etcetc 23:00, 3 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That is original research. I could also argue that we should accompany those comments with Yarros quote and that he made Tucker's views unambiguously clear. Also, you keep deleting Tucker's views about anarchism in Spain and part about his inheritance giving no valid reason for that. Those parts of text are sourced and they are adding depth to the article. -- Vision Thing -- 19:25, 5 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The Yarros quote is unambiguously incorrect, so you could argue for its inclusion, but would be knowingly incorporating nonsense. Libertatia 20:15, 5 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Tucker's published work is original research? Preferring Tucker's own words in representing his views over those of others is original research? I'm removing the bit about Spain because it doesn't say anything we don't already know. He was against communism, he was against anarcho-syndicalism, period. His feelings on these matters did not change in his late life, but you want to include his views on these issues specifically during his late life to give the text an interpretation that is all your own.
The inheritance is a different issue. As I made clear, it is ambiguous from the source whether or not his annuity involved interest. It may or may not have. Even if it did, it is completely irrelevant to the article. Do we have to insert in every article about every anarchist that they lived in states and word it in such a way as to imply that this clearly indicated that they didn't believe in anarchism? How about we mention in the Karl Marx article that he continued to have daily interactions with capitalist market economies his entire life? Obviously, Marx didn't really believe in communism then, eh? These kinds of reasoning are absurd, even when the evidence is born out. In your case its absurd reasoning without any evidence, and you want to insert the source into the text to push the appearance that there is more to his annuity than we actually know. Etcetc 04:40, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Using Tucker's words from 1911 to explain his views in 1930s is original research. You have no evidence that he hadn't changed his mind in the meantime. Part about Spain is important because nowhere in the article his views about anarcho-syndicalism or events in Spain are meantioned. In my text about inheritance interest is not mentioned anywhere, and relevance of information about annuity is such that it was mentioned by two different authors. -- Vision Thing -- 15:04, 7 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

As has already been explained several times, it is the postscript written in 1926 that does nothing to retract his previous opinion on socialism. Thus, it is the 1926 postscript is being used to represent Tucker's late life views -in his own words-. The fact that this is one of our last ever chances to see Tucker's PUBLISHED viewpoint is why it is extremely relevant in the context of the obscure, out of context, private letter you are trying to peddle, which honestly shouldn't even be in the text. But if you -insist- on adding that letter, the least we could do is balance it with his published, unambiguous viewpoint held as late as 1926.

If you want to explicate his life-long hostility toward anarcho-socialism, or all communism in general, please do so anywhere in the main body of the article. Going into it all the sudden in the "late life" section gives the false appearance that his viewpoint changed.

As far as the annuity is concerned, you've made it very clear that you think it is relevant because it demonstrates that he received interest. In other words, you are justifying its place in the text based on your belief that it implies that Tucker received interest. I am arguing against its place in the text based on, as I've already said, 2 things. First, it does not necessarily imply that he received interest, and second even if it did it is irrelevant given that his political and economic beliefs were not readily practicable in the midst of the corporate-state-driven economy he found himself immersed in. The idea that we would hold against every political figure the fact that they did not live in the politic they argued in favor of doesn't really sound compelling to me. Etcetc 15:19, 7 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Do you understand what an annuity is? You put money in it and receive more money back than you put into it. Someone is paying you interest for your allowing them to use your money. You are profiting without labor. Tucker was a hypocrite. Regardless of the reason of putting it in the article, it is sourced, so you shouldn't delete it. If it was important to mention about Tucker by published sources (which I can think of 3 sources off the top of my head that it's in), then it is important enough to mention it in this article. Wikipedia editors should be as mindless as possible and just regurgitate sourced information. You shouldn't filter sourced information just because you don't like it or gives an impression that you don't like. Any sourced information out there should be allowed in the article, even if it seems to push someone's POV, because afterall it's simply sourced information. In my experiences on Wikipedia, the major problem on Wikipedia is censors. That is, people trying to censor sourced information. You've never seen me censor information. I don't think I've seen Vision Thing censor information either. My struggles on Wikipedia have been to keep information in, not out. If you find that you're struggling to keep information OUT of Wikipedia, you need to question your integrity. Wikipedia is here to bring information in public view. You shouldn't be fighting against that mission. About Tucker's views on anarchism in Spain, etc, no one is trying to say that Tucker changed his views by putting that in the late life section. That information is there to show he had NOT changed his views on "anarcho"-communism. But, more importantly, it's there because the Martin source thought it important enough to mention in a discussion about Tucker's views just before death. Illegal editor 05:52, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"Wikipedia editors should be as mindless as possible." Can we please make this one of the Pillars? It's not true, of course. But it would make a great t-shirt. Libertatia 13:45, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]


What is the point of this: "...contemporary anarcho-capitalist anarchists like Wendy McElroy believe that his philosophy cannot be considered collectivist."? Is that even controversial? If a philosophy is individualist then of course it's not collectivist. Why is that there? I suspect Wendy McElroy is saying more than this than this and people have been messing around with the cited statement. In addition, McElroy does not call herself an anarcho-capitalist but an "individualist anarchist." Ando Fern 17:53, 24 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Please note: User:Ando Fern is a sockpuppet of the banned user Billy Ego. Etcetc 18:52, 25 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Your point is? Dark Egg 19:09, 25 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My point is, stop creating sockpuppets and wasting our time. You've been banned. MastCell Talk 19:17, 26 May 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Late Life section[edit]

As I've said before, the "Late Life" section is deceptively incomplete. I we were to take on the details of Tucker's life from, say, the end of the "Liberty" period through his death, and do it thoroughly, most of the problems of POV would disappear. The Yarros account is obviously incorrect in important particulars, but Martin gives lots of assorted details. Tucker became discouraged, took sides in WWI, preferred Mother Earth to other anarchist magazines, thought the Spanish anarchists "crazy" because they weren't Proudhonists, preferred General Idea of the Revolution to Proudhon's other works, said rude things about "socialism," etc. It's a pretty eclectic picture. Libertatia 14:36, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

What is wrong with what Yarros said? The fact that he said Tucker opposed all forms of socialism? Well, obviously Yarros simply has a different definition of socialism than Tucker. He's obviously using the normal popular definition(s), instead of Tucker's definition. Few people call a private property anti-collectivism system socialist. All you have to say is that Yarros says Tucker opposed all forms of socialism "as Yarros defines the term." This is not rocket science. Illegal editor 16:38, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Note that it may be the case that Tucker simply stopped calling himself a socialist and just considered himself a straightforward egoist. Like I said above, don't reason so much to determine whether a source is correct or not. That's not the job of Wikipedia editors. Just report what the sources say. You don't have to report a source as true but simply say "According to X..." or "In the opinion of X..." But, don't censor the opinions of the sources, whether you think they're right or wrong. Just make sure that the sources meet the policy criteria for reliable sources. Illegal editor 16:43, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
What "may be the case" is OR, as is what is "obvious" only to you, and we have the most authoritative of published sources—Tucker's own writings—that at most suggest a change in usage very late in life. Nobody expects POV-pushing sock-puppets to care about presenting an accurate picture of Tucker's thought. I have already suggested that the section can be greatly improved by not cherry-picking the Martin's excerpts from the Baskette letters for anti-socialist comments. As a longer-term solution, I'm working on getting transcripts of the letters themselves, along with other late writings. If Tucker came to hate "socialism," and take sides in a statist war, while preferring Emma Goldman's Mother Earth and Proudhon's General Idea, by all means lets get the facts in the article. As for Yarros, his claims to notability as a commentator on Tucker seem pretty weak when he can't even get Tucker's key terms right. If you can get the Wikipedia powers that be to back you up on our obligation to be "mindless" and include every bit of sloppy misinformation published on a given subject, then I imagine I'll just abandon Wikipedia to its inevitable descent into nonsense, but I'm guessing you're not in the position to do that. Libertatia 17:05, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes what "may be the case" is OR. Just as you saying that Yarros is wrong is OR. I'm just trying to open you up to the possibility that you are wrong. The point is, it doesn't matter whether Yarros is right or wrong. Don't censor sourced information. In my editing, whenever I think something is wrong, I don't delete the information. I simply search for sources that contradict that information and put that in the article, to show conflicting opinions. If I can't find any, then fine, maybe I'm wrong. But, I don't remove the information. The worse thing you can do is censor information because you think it's wrong, because afterall you may be wrong. Deleting reliably sourced information because you think it's wrong is forcing the article to subscribe to your original research. Illegal editor 17:12, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Nonsense. You have only argued that there is some way in which Yarros' statement might be construed as correct. That's rather roundabout. Yarros claims that Tucker opposed all socialisms, giving reference to specific debates. In those debates, Tucker said, there are two socialisms, and I support one. Simple as that. Yarros' claim muddies, rather than clarifies the actual position of Tucker. Libertatia 17:24, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That's your opinion. My opinion is that it clarifies, since almost no one today (as well as in his day) defines socialism as Tucker defined it. Yarros obviously doesn't define it that way. When one hears someone is opposed to socialism, it's usually understood to mean that that person opposed collective control over the means of production either by the state or the community. But again, our opinions don't matter. Don't delete sourced information. Illegal editor 17:38, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I will, for the record, continue to work to make these entries accurate, until such time as Wikipedia makes striving for accuracy an offense—at which point I'll sell "Wikipedia editors must be mindless. It's a Pillar!" t-shirts for a living. Libertatia 17:45, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
In other words, you will continue to try to make these articles subscribe to your original research. Illegal editor 17:47, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If you think you can make a case for disruptive editing, have a ball. I'm concerned with accuracy. I'm a scholar, working on entries within my field. Maybe someday I'll be a t-shirt entrepreneur. Libertatia 17:57, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Don't you realize that Wikipedia is not the place to be a scholar? If you want to be a scholar then write papers on your own. Real scholars don't Wikipedia. Now there's a t-shirt for you. Illegal editor 18:12, 6 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If you think that "Late life" section can and should be expanded, please do that. -- Vision Thing -- 15:06, 7 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'll do it as I find time. I'm trying to get a bibliography of works by and about Josiah Warren together, in support of a colleague's book project, so I may not have time to do much more than kibitz for a little while. Most of what we have from the Baskette letters is in Martin, if anyone wants to add that stuff. I'm trying to get my hands on Tucker's contributions to The New Freewoman and its successor journal. Libertatia 16:22, 7 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Notability of the annuity[edit]

I don't have an opinion, really, on noting Tucker's investments. I'll give Vision Thing the benefit of the doubt on motivation, although we have gone through the whole "why don't mutualists get rid of their savings accounts" thing recently enough with one of the an-cap sock-puppets to raise questions. It isn't necessarily hypocrisy to make use of the present system while preferring and advocating a radically different one. The notability of the investment seems to hinge on the argument about hypocrisy. Face it, "SoAndSo made an investment for his old age" would hardly be notable in any other context. I think, though, that if it is mentioned, its notability needs to be vouched for in some way by the usual sorts of sources. Libertatia 16:34, 7 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It already had sources. Illegal editor 04:44, 8 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The question is its notability, a judgment which Wikipedia explicitly requires us to consider. Libertatia 16:19, 8 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I have removed the reference to the annuity from the article because, as it stands, it is a non sequitur, with no clear reason to be there. I can think of several reasons editors might want to include the material, but the reasons need to be made explicit and the notability issue addressed from citable sources. Libertatia 16:25, 8 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The notability comes from the fact that it is stated in sources. Because the sources state it, it's notable to those sources. That's good enough for Wikipedia. Besides, it's interesting to know how a person supported himself, especially when he though receiving non-labor income as exploitative. Wikipedia editors should put their biases aside instead of censoring things. Illegal editor 21:53, 10 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The section was not incorporated into the article in any coherent fashion. If it is notable enough to include, then presumably it can be incorporated into the flow of the article, at which point perhaps the notability issue will be resolved. Crying "censorship" is insufficient. There are many details about Tucker's life that would not be germane to an encyclopedia article. I'm only asking that someone be clear about why they think this detail is important. Libertatia 23:22, 10 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I don't see why anything at all should be left out of the article if it's sourced. I'd personally like to know what the color of his eyes were. If that is sourced, then I say add that to the article as well. Space is not yet a problem in this article so I don't understand why you are trying to keep information out. Who is going to be harmed by finding out that Tucker received income from an annuity? Illegal editor 23:34, 10 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I think the best solution would be to convert current "Dates, places and events" into "Biography" section, and then place info about income from annuity there. -- Vision Thing -- 18:59, 12 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The solution would be to provide evidence that his annuity involved an interest based investment, and then provide some source arguing that because he received an interest based investment this must somehow indicate that he didn't actually believe that interest gained from capital was harmful to an economy. Etcetc 23:43, 17 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Apparently you don't know what an annuity is. An annuity pays YOU interest. It's like putting your money in a CD except instead of getting your money in one lump sum at the end of several years you get it in periodic payments. If you get an annuity, you're lending someone your money to use whatever they want to use it for. For this service they pay you back that money plus interest. Illegal editor 00:31, 18 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No claim is made that he didn't think interest was harmful. Illegal editor 00:37, 18 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

All workers would be owners?[edit]

I have a problem with this statement in the article: "Eseentially such a society would be one where all workers would be owners and all owners would be workers simultaneously." First of all there is no source for it. Second of all it contradicts the quote from Tucker in the article that says "it will make no difference whether men work for themselves, or are employed, or employ others. In any case they can get nothing but that wages for their labor which free competition determines." It doesn't matter to Tucker whether someone works at someone else's business or at one's own business as long as there is freedom of competition. I've been deleting the unsourced line but Full Shuyanta has been putting it back in. Illegal editor 16:45, 18 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It does need to be sourced. It is not, however, really contradictory to Tucker's goal of making all individuals equally dependent on wages, which could probably only be achieved in an economy that consisted of worker-owners dependent on the use of one another's capital. Libertatia 22:15, 18 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Tucker believed that no matter whether you choose to working at your own business or work at someone else's you would get a just wage if you eliminated the government protected monopolies. For everyone to get a just wage requires that no one get a wage without working and to get a wage in proportion to their work, so everyone being dependent on wages in this context just means that the person who hire others to work at his business is working also. The business owner or capitalist is not just sitting idle while others run his business while he collects an income. His belief that this wouldnt be possible if the government didn't enforce monopolies. I dont think he claims that everyone would choose to run their own business. Obviously not everyone would choose to do so just because they could get interest free loans. Interest rates got near zero a few years ago in the U.S. and not everyone was running out to start their own business. So yes it needs to be sourced. Illegal editor 00:27, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Here it is straight from Tucker's own mouth about his vision of an individualist anarchist society: "each man reaping the fruits of his labour and no man able to live in idleness on an income from capital....become[ing] a great hive of Anarchistic workers, prosperous and free individuals [combining] to carry on their production and distribution on the cost principle." [1] I now have every right to insert this into the article as well as the other sentence which echoes this sentiment. Full Shunyata 03:57, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That doesn't say that everyone that works would own a means of production. Illegal editor 04:03, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Either you have reading comprehension problems or you are intentionally using mental gymnastics to force fit things into your personal worldview. "each man reaping the fruits of his labour and no man able to live in idleness on an income from capital....become[ing] a great hive of Anarchistic workers" It doesn't get any clearer than that. I don't see how it could be any more transparent. Nowhere does he say that some workers would be non-property owners or that some owners would be non-workers. Tucker clearly said that no man, in his opinion, should or would (in an individualist anarchist society) live off of returns on capital from the labor of others. Where does he say that some workers would not be owners or that some owners would not be workers? Full Shunyata 04:13, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"it will make no difference whether men work for themselves, or are employed, or employ others. In any case they can get nothing but that wages for their labor which free competition determines." He is saying whether someone owns their own business and works for himself or works for someone else that owns a business, as long as there is free competition the worker is going to get a just wage. He does not say that everyone is going own their own business. Illegal editor 04:21, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The quote says nothing of some people being non-owners. Anyone who knows anything about business knows that property-owners can be employed by other property-owners. It simply says that in an individualist anarchist society that some people would be self-employed and some would either be employers or employees. Nothing about some employees being non-owners or some employers being non-workers. Stop grasping for straws. Find me a quote where Tucker said that some people would not be workers or that some workers would not own any property. Full Shunyata 04:24, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
What do you think the difference between self-employment and employment by others is? If you are self-employed then you own your own means of production. If you are employed by someone else, then you are being paid to operate their means of production. I'm not saying Tucker said employers would be non workers. He says the opposite, that employers would be workers too. If you want to state in this article that everyone who works would own their own means of production, then you need a source. Illegal editor 04:34, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This is not a discussion about employment, this is a discussion about ownership. Tucker clearly said that society would be a hive of workers with no man living in idle returns on capital. Stop inserting your own messed up interpretations, this isn't an inkblot test. Full Shunyata 04:47, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Saying that "no one is living in idle returns on capital" is not the same thing as saying that everyone owns a means of production. Illegal editor 04:55, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No it's not. Again, you need a source that plainly says that Tucker says everyone will own a means of production, if that's the claim you want to make in the article. Illegal editor 05:15, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"No it's not." Ah, such a scholarly rebuttal. Well, I clearly can't argue with that, lol. I posted two quotes from Tucker clearly saying that "labor should possess its own [means of production]" and "no man living off of idle capital...hive of Anarchistic workers". Nowhere does Tucker say that some people would not own property. Good night, kid. Full Shunyata 05:17, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Tucker even says, in State Socialism and Anarchism, that the aim of his movement is to put capital/means of production/property into the hands of labor and "labor in possession of its own". That doesn't sound like a man who believed some workers wouldn't be owners (being an owner does not mean that one will not be an employed by another owner). I said nothing about employment, I was speaking of property ownership. Full Shunyata 04:30, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The statement "labor in possession of it own" does not mean everyone who labors owns his own means of production. It means everyone who labors receives his "full product" which to Tucker meant an income in proportion to his labor. Illegal editor 04:34, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"The statement "labor in possession of it own" does not mean everyone who labors owns his own means of production."...............That is the most ass-backwards logic I have ever heard. You basically just said "X does not mean X". The "full product" business is your own original research. Tucker clearly said that "labor (everyone who labors) will be in possession of their own [capital/means of production]". Original research is not allowed. Full Shunyata 04:47, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You're doing original research. You're interpreting the vague statement "labor in possession of its own" to mean whatever you want it to mean. That's your problem. You have very little knowledge about these philosophy. You take something and then you add sentences to articles without knowing what you're talking about. And then you get upset when someone deletes them because you can't source them. Sorry but "labor in possession of its own" is not an andequate source for the claim that all workers would own a means of production. Illegal editor 04:54, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
1) I fail to see what is at all vague about the statement. 2) You are one to talk when you are the one who pulled a "full product of labor" interpretation out of a quote where no such thing was implied. 3) You are the one who interpreted Bakunin calling Proudhon's mutualism "collectivism" to apply to himself as well because you believe he is a weird "modified" mutualist. I would ask if you are high on something, but I won't even go there. Full Shunyata 04:58, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Anyone with a basic knowledge of anarchist history knows that Bakunin modified Proudhonism to come up with anarcho-collectivism. About "labor in possession of it's own," it's not a vague statement to you, because you've already decided that it means something other than what it says and that your interpretation is correct. Again, if you want to state in the article that everyone would own a means of production, then you need to find a source that explicitly says that. What you do is you just pick out statements and then try to convince us that they mean something other than what they say with zero evidence. Illegal editor 05:19, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'd like everyone to see this. I want everyone to take a good look at what can happen if you get lost a world of your historical revisionism. I want any other anarchist to look at this and tell me if things like "Bakunin modified mutualism to make anarcho-collectivism" and "when Tucker said that labor should be in possession of its own he just meant that every person should get the full product of their labor, not that all laborers should be in possession of means of production" makes any semblance of sense to them. Poor Bakunin and Tucker must be rolling in their graves and pulling their hair out right now. Full Shunyata 05:26, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I have a feeling the only one pulling their hair out is you. Illegal editor 05:40, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"Bakunin...had modified Proudhonian teachings into a doctrine later known as collectivism." Illegal editor 16:48, 19 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  1. ^ The Individualist Anarchists, p. 276

"scientific socialism"[edit]

See Talk:Anarchism; Proudhon used the term before Marx did, and others before Proudhon. Jacob Haller 03:12, 4 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I doubt that Tucker's use of the term "scientific socialism" is particularly notable. Tucker did describe his philosophy in those terms in Liberty (Oct 14, 1882), ten years before the translation of Engels' pamphlet made the "utopian vs. scientific" divide of real importance among English-speaking socialists. But most later references to "scientific socialism" in Liberty are derisive, aimed at Eleanor Marx and Richard Aveling. Libertatia 23:34, 4 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

There should be some notes on the use of the term "socialism" since it meant something different at that time. I've seen a few articles that explain this. I'll try to add something. Operation Spooner 19:10, 6 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Let's deal with one problem at a time, please. It is claimed that Tucker borrowed the phrase from Marx, which is certainly dubious. There is a question whether the particular phrase "scientific socialism" is noteworthy in Tucker's writings. Depending on what comes out of those issues, perhaps there is need for something in the way of a clarification of the term. Libertatia 23:37, 6 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No need to deal with on problem at a time. I can multitask. What I added had nothing to do with "scientific socialism." It has to do with the term "socialism." Every bit I added is in the reference so there was no reason for you to delete it. Operation Spooner 23:41, 6 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I don't see the logic in deleting something that is referenced while keeping something that is "dubious" and unreferenced. Operation Spooner 23:52, 6 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The issue was something that was dubious, with an incomplete reference. The something, which you deleted, explained the nature of the "socialism" in question just as well as your own addition, despite its other problems. Libertatia 00:03, 7 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]


I've just added a pdf archive of Tucker's Radical Review to the archive of Liberty and Libertas I recently completed. Wendy McElroy has Indexes of both periodicals, which are linked from the front pages of the respective archives. Libertatia 22:06, 8 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Good. I have a couple of those Radical Reviews but I've been afraid to open them and read them fearing they'll fall apart since they're so old. Operation Spooner 22:27, 8 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hold your breath and support the spine! It's not like they were 4-page tabloids. Libertatia 22:40, 8 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Break up the summary section?[edit]

I'm thinking we could break up the summary section, and create new sections including (1) The four monopolies on Tucker's analysis of 19th-century capitalism, (2) one discussing his positive proposals and (3) one discussing his criticism of Most's and Kropotkin's anarchocommunism. Jacob Haller 04:00, 16 October 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Any kind of categorization sounds good, since the "summary" is so large it's not a summary. Operation Spooner 04:10, 16 October 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have a question - since when did socialist anarchism = social anarchism? You keep saying "Tucker was not a socialist, he was an individualist" "He was not a socialist anarchist, he was an individualist anarchist". Who here is suggesting that socialism is anti-individualistic? And since when did socialist anarchism equal communist, collectivist and syndicalist anarchism? Socialism != Communism. Socialist anarchism is a term that individualist and mutualist anarchists used for themselves. It is distinct and different from social anarchism. No one is suggesting that Tucker is a social anarchist, but he did consider himself, and is considered by most anarchists outside of 'anarcho'-capitalists to be a "socialist anarchist". Individualist and Mutualist anarchism were called "anarcho-socialism" back then and some still call it that today, such as Kevin Carson.
"Socialist anarchism" = Individualist and Mutualist anarchism, "Social anarchism" = Syndicalist, Collectivist and Communist anarchism. Full Shunyata 08:40, 25 October 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I try to avoid archaic terminology. Today Tucker is not considered to be a socialist but an individualist. Socialism and individualism are opposites. No socialist is an individualist and no individualist is a socialist. The sources in this article and others do no consider Tucker to be a socialist but an individualist, and make a distinction between individualist anarchism and socialist anarchism, and those sources are not anarcho-capitalists. Operation Spooner 20:25, 25 October 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"Archaic"? By who's standards? The term "socialism" has always been a wide term within anarchist circles. I could care less what dictionaries and self-professed academians consider to be the definition of 'socialism'. "Socialism and individualism are opposites." Says who? What criteria are you using to define these two classifications? And why should it be relevant to anarchists? "and those sources are not anarcho-capitalists." Are these sources anarchistic at all or just some 'academians'? Full Shunyata 05:53, 30 October 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Socialists are for socialization, by definition. Individualist are against socialization, so they can't be socialists. Operation Spooner 20:28, 25 October 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
In anarchist circles (I don't care about academic circles), socialism = ownership of capital by laborers. Simple as that. And what exactly is "socialization"? Worker-owned cooperatives (the main economic institutions supported by individualist and mutualist anarchists) would be considered "socilization" by capitalist standards. You're not fooling anyone, Anarcho-capitalism/RJII. Different names, same methods. Trying to drive a wedge between individualistic and social branches of anarchism by claiming that individualists having markets in common with anarcho-capitalists means that they are not socialists by de facto. [Sarcasm On]Because we all know that there is no such thing as a market socialist.[Sarcasm Off]Full Shunyata 05:53, 30 October 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
First of all, I'm not trying to fool anyone. I don't know what you're talking about. What's a "worker-owned cooperative?" Benjamin Tucker supported that? What do you mean by that? If you're just talking about a worker-owned busisiness, there's nothing socialist about that. They're very common in capitalist systems. What does any of this have to do with anarcho-capitalism? Operation Spooner 20:22, 30 October 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

There is not, and has never been, an uncontested definition of "socialism." There is not currently any consensus, among academics, socialists or anti-socialists (by whatever definitions you choose) on any sort of simple opposition between socialism and individualism. All of the attempts to answer questions here by simple recourse to definitions of terms are equally futile and disruptive. All necessarily involve kinds of synthesis considered "original research" by wikipedia standards. The same is true of appeals to "modern" or "archaic" terminology. Libertatia 19:27, 31 October 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Amen. I have never seen an anarchist/libertarian socialist, whether individualistic or social, claim that their emphasis is not on individual freedom. Nor have any of them claimed that they solely focus on individualism. I don't know where this Socialism = Anti-individualism myth is coming from. Full Shunyata 06:04, 16 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The widespread consensus is that socialists advocate social ownership and oppose individual ownership while individualists support individual ownership and reject the idea of social ownership. A pure individualist can never be a socialist, and vice versa. Socialists are collectvists by definition. Individualists are the opposite of collectivists by definition. Operation Spooner 20:09, 31 October 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think you have confused "widespread consensus" of the informed type with "popular understanding" or something of the sort. I'm sure that confusion flatters your presuppositions and forwards your editing agenda, but it simply does not reflect an informed consensus. Libertatia 16:34, 1 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, it is you who has confused what I mean by "widespread consensus" with "popular understanding." Popular understanding is irrelevant as far Wikipedia concerned. I'm talking about the consensus of academia, i.e. the "informed consensus." Apparently, you're not part of the informed consensus. The consensus is that socialism is for socialized ownership and individualism is for individualized ownership. What do you allege that my "editing agenda" is? Operation Spooner 19:49, 1 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

WikiProject class rating[edit]

This article was automatically assessed because at least one WikiProject had rated the article as start, and the rating on other projects was brought up to start class. BetacommandBot 03:48, 10 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Found a citation but article is locked[edit]

In the section "Early life and influences," the quote "widely considered to be the finest individualist-anarchist periodical ever issued in the English language" is unsourced. The source is

McElroy, Wendy. "Benjamin Tucker, Liberty, and Individualist Anarchism" The Independent Review, v.II, n. 3, Winter 1998, p. 421.

It can be found here:

Could someone with edit privileges please add this citation? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:48, 25 June 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Will do. – S. Rich (talk) 14:56, 25 June 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]


External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just modified one external link on Benjamin Tucker. Please take a moment to review my edit. If you have any questions, or need the bot to ignore the links, or the page altogether, please visit this simple FaQ for additional information. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, please set the checked parameter below to true or failed to let others know (documentation at {{Sourcecheck}}).

This message was posted before February 2018. After February 2018, "External links modified" talk page sections are no longer generated or monitored by InternetArchiveBot. No special action is required regarding these talk page notices, other than regular verification using the archive tool instructions below. Editors have permission to delete these "External links modified" talk page sections if they want to de-clutter talk pages, but see the RfC before doing mass systematic removals. This message is updated dynamically through the template {{source check}} (last update: 18 January 2022).

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

Cheers.—InternetArchiveBot (Report bug) 02:21, 31 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just modified 3 external links on Benjamin Tucker. Please take a moment to review my edit. If you have any questions, or need the bot to ignore the links, or the page altogether, please visit this simple FaQ for additional information. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, you may follow the instructions on the template below to fix any issues with the URLs.

This message was posted before February 2018. After February 2018, "External links modified" talk page sections are no longer generated or monitored by InternetArchiveBot. No special action is required regarding these talk page notices, other than regular verification using the archive tool instructions below. Editors have permission to delete these "External links modified" talk page sections if they want to de-clutter talk pages, but see the RfC before doing mass systematic removals. This message is updated dynamically through the template {{source check}} (last update: 18 January 2022).

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

Cheers.—InternetArchiveBot (Report bug) 05:36, 18 July 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

British English tag[edit]

I have removed the {{British English}} tag from this talk page. Bios of persons whose only nationality is that of an English-speaking country are usually considered to have "strong national ties" to that country. If British English were the established variant here, I could see keeping it, but I see little evidence that it is — for example all instances of labo(u)r not in direct quotes are written the American way. Tucker himself may have written labour, but that was in the 19th century. --Trovatore (talk) 00:22, 8 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]