[p2p-research] Building Alliances

Kevin Carson free.market.anticapitalist at gmail.com
Sun Nov 8 22:55:36 CET 2009

On 11/6/09, Michel Bauwens <michelsub2004 at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Fri, Nov 6, 2009 at 11:58 PM, Ryan Lanham <rlanham1963 at gmail.com> wrote:

> > As an aside, capital gains is income from wealth already taxes as work
> after it is invested.  It is an additional tax.  Again, not controversial
> for anyone in the fields of accounting and economics (which admittedly can
> be waved off easily in political terms).  But that's my very point.  Those
> who wave off such views subscribe to a given (communist/socialist) political
> philosophy that people like Kevin and myself reject. I'd sure like to know
> how it can be reconciled so I can know whether P2P is actually just a shill
> idea for communism.  If it is so, I for one reject it totally. Likewise
> others would reject it if it were a shill for capitalism, which, to me, it
> clearly is not.
> >

> not controversial to you, but hugely controversial to many people, including
> many liberals that arer in no way com/socs. I'm not sure you are correct in
> thinking that Kevin shares your preferences though. Kevin?

> I do not agree with Kevin's positions in all things, but I have never seen
> him as a supporter of the rich, and of neoliberalism, but I think he can
> best explain it himself. His mutualism is very close to socialism by the
> way, it's individual based rather than collectivist, but it comes from the
> same general thrust of politics.

To me the issue of whether the rich pay in most tax revenue is beside
the point.  In most of its functions, the state works as executive
committee of big business, even though those functions may have little
to do with direct subsidies or money grants to corporations.  The
structural rules of the system are set up to redistribute money to the
rich and to big business through unequal exchange (privilege,
artificial scarcity, artificial property rights, etc.) in the market.

So for me the central point should be to eliminate this primary form
of redistribution by eliminating privilege and artificial property
rights; if this is done, most of what's regarded as redistributive
politics will be moot.

But there probably should be a place for redistribution in the big
picture IMO.  When large concentrations of property stem from unjust
acquisition, a land reform (or capital reform) based on the principles
of "the land to the tiller, the workplace to the worker" at least
deserves serious consideration.

In any case, I  don't see revolutionary seizure of property and things
of that sort as opposed in principle to P2P.  P2P is compatible with
just about everything, from Social Democracy, to Georgism and Social
Credit, to vanilla flavored free markets (minus patent and copyright,
of course).  And I don't think the percentage of taxes paid by the
rich, in itself, is an argument against redistributive politics.  If
the size of the incomes received by the rich is the result of some
sort of inequity built into the system, then redressing that inequity
may be a legitimate part of the transitional agenda.

Kevin Carson
Center for a Stateless Society http://c4ss.org
Mutualist Blog:  Free Market Anti-Capitalism
Studies in Mutualist Political Economy
Organization Theory:  A Libertarian Perspective

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