Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Difference Between Counter-Economy and Agorist Economy

A growing tendency among counter-economists or anarchists introduced to agorism is to confuse the terms of counter-economy and agorism. A simple reading of Konkin would resolve this matter, but many are too busy to read through the theory of the ideas. Simply put, the counter-economy refers to either uneducated underground economic actions, whether intentional or not, and those who study the counter-economy (a lesser used definition). Agorism refers to underground economic actions done intentionally to weaken the state. I will be using the former definition of counter-economist within this article. Therefore, the counter-economist economy is the underground economy while the agorist economy is the section of the underground economy of people acting to end the state.

It is important to not confuse the two because a counter-economist does not necessarily have the ethics of an agorist and can create bad PR for agorists, rat out an agorist to protect themselves, and/or may lead to the creation of a new state. At the same time, it is crucial to work with and amongst the counter-economists to grow the counter-economy and agorist economy.

Because a counter-economist does not act to end the state, it is also likewise that they are more willing to act in a way that results in bad PR. This can mean using violence or unsavory business practices such as racial discrimination or not paying an employee in order to make a profit.

A counter-economist is in the counter-economy for one reason: survival. It is an entirely economic decision to provide for themselves, and possibly their family, so that they can live to the next day. This occurs when the statist economy has become so regulated that it is economically inefficient to work within it. If the state were to offer a pardon and/or financial reward to rat out the greater threat of an agorist, educating against the state, it would be in their economic benefit to accept the deal instead of being punished for their activity.

Either will end the state they are living under when the counter-economy has grown to such a level that the state can no longer profit from organized theft. So why worry about a counter-economist creating a new state? Because while they were forced underground to survive due to statist actions, the schelling point of statism has not been eradicated. Many are still under the belief that a state can be better if different people are in charge, not the belief that the state itself is the problem. This is why formerly Soviet Union territory is still oppressed by statism.

And its because of these very reasons that agorists must recognize the difference between counter-economists and agorists for not only their own safety, but for the purposes of ending the state. Educating individuals equally at risk for illegal activities results in more people not wanting a new state when the current one collapses and an increase in protection as they gain anarchist ethics of solidarity and more ethical business practices. As the agorist economy grows within the shell of the counter-economy, the likelihood of a new state rising from the ashes of the old one decreases as there are more influential businessmen disavowing the use of coercive violence and more peaceful methods of providing services typically, and supposedly, provided by the state.

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