Economic systems are the ultimate engines that run society. These systems should express most basic values of society such as well being, mutual aid, individual autonomie, cooperation, free association and voluntary action. These economic systems should also help cultivate positive human attributes such as goodwill, creativity, critical thought, honesty, tolerance, altruism, equality and self-reliance. In many ways these qualities follow the Golden Rule: treat others the way you would like to be treated. While some Left Libertarians believe in free markets, most do not. For this reason a Left Libertarian society would have a diversity of economic systems. People should have a choice because economic systems, more than anything else, directly affect their everyday lives. Any type of economic supremacy will produce a society where everyone drives the same cars, lives in the same homes and receives the same education. In other words: think the same, act the same and live the same lives. Human beings are diverse.
So any kind of economic system should allow differences to flourish. Left libertarians by their very nature are against the kind of economic fundamentalism that is so prevalent in our political system today. For non-market libertarians life this more than the car you drive, the home you live in. It’s the persuit of experiences worth telling into a life. Non-market Libertarianism is just a preference, one that I hold. Understanding a non market system can take a lot of time. For most the world can only be composed of state capitalism, state socialism, or mix of the two. I consider state socialism to be out of the question.
In speaking about a non-market system The system of the Soviets and Maoïsm have proven to be disastrous for human beings because of the use of central planning and concentration of power. Under a non-market Libertarian society, communities themselves are free associations based on voluntary action and living under libertarian principles. Decision-making and power become completely decentralized and are placed in the hands of every individual: there is no central body. And each economic apparatus is spread out and self-managed without the use of any coercion. As with workers self-management, decisions are made by participatory democracy. These communities can be as small as a hundred people or as large as 500.000. Ideally communities would be the size of a small town, allowing everyone to be heard and have a say over their own lives. Because these are free associating communities the people who decide to live in them also choose to come together to work towards some practical and achievable end. Like most free associations individual freedom should be harnessed within it. But must also be extended to include collective freedom. In many ways these communities work along the same lines as workers self-management. Through economic and community self-management profits as the sole driving force are removed. This is not to say the economic self-management does not recognize things like supply-and-demand, scarcity, efficient use of resources, and all the other things essential for an economy to thrive. In many ways I think non-market libertarians have better ways for resolving these issues. The purpose of this video’s the lay down the basic framework. I should also say that the following should not be seen as a blueprint for a future society. Many criticized any attempt to describe non-market possibilities. This particular attempt in describing these systems should be viewed with extreme sceptizism or even impossibilities. Predictions for the future are usually wrong. With that said, the following are just possibilities that may or may not be achievable. However, representation of these systems helps one to visualize and conceptualize the ideas of a non-market Libertarian community and its potentials. The idea abolishing work for most Left Libertarians is central because they see work as something that stiffles human growth. By work I mean mandatory, rode and implessant work. Obviously, things such as painting a picture, scientific inquiry, gardening for pleasure do not that this category. The abolishment of work should be seen as a goal. Something to strife for rather than a predicted reality. Under a self-managed community large steps could be taken in this direction. For instance the entire industry up advertising and public manipulation industries would be eliminated, because they were no longer serve a purpose. There will no longer be massive allocation of business resources put in creating artificial wants by manipulating people’s emotions. There would be no advertisements to lit our public spaces and no manipulation of the media with corporate think-tanks and front groups. Business would be self-managed so wasted misallocations towards boards of directors and management would be returned to the workers. The fact that these communities would be self-managed and politicians and government would be eliminated means that bribing politicians with campaign-donations would no longer exist; along with its wastefull and bureaucratic spending. There would be no need to use government officials to expand markets by pushing them into other countries where they’re not wanted. Patents and copyrights would be gone, with information freely shared, which means the billions spent on things like creating copycat drugs and technology would be a practice that the past. For these reasons and much more it is believed that the work week could be cut extensively. Under free association, communities can pull their resources to figure out how to use technology to eliminate unwanted work. This can be done within the worker-owned company, but communities can also use the best minds to work towards these ends. Instead of engineers trying to figure out how to make a better blender or toaster they can be utilized, if the engineer chooses, to design more efficient means and technology towards ending unnecessary work. Technological prototypes would probably take the form of more universialized technology that could be applied to most jobs, while work on more obscure uses would wait until later. The power behind the self-managed economy and community is a society can take the form it desires. A community might come together and decide that sixteen hours of work per week is more then sufficient for people to maintain their livingstandards. Perhaps this community decides the required work week to be 32 hours to help increase the standard of living. The first 16 hours would be devoted to the general maintenance of the city so you would probably work in a profession that you are trained in Such as nursing, carpentry et cetera. These jobs would be under workers self-management. The second 16 hours would be devoted to an association of your choice. These associations should provide some kind service to the community. The main purpose of these associations are to pursue the things that you love. These voluntary groups might take the form of music, cooking, gardening, teaching, physics, painting, archetecture, engineering, sports and so on. It doesn’t matter as long as they are somehow productive. In a society like this, gardeners would beautify public spaces. Musicians would play live shows for the public. Painters and artists will decorate the town. Physicists would make new discoveries for all. An engineer might work her first 16 hours running hydraulic systems for basic maintenance of the town. While her second 16 hours is devoted to making her own discoveries. This information would be freely shared for all. It is believed that under a system like this massive discoveries would florish without the short term money-driven cost of research and development. Even looks of the city under economic self management can take interesting directions. A community might want to pursue something like the older parts of western europe, were great cathedrals or civic places are centered in the middle of town. Where everything from homes, restaurants and shopping are walking distances. A place where architecture actually expresses its history people and culture. Or perhaps a community would want something more futuristic, like the ideas proposed by Jacque Fresco. Where an entire city is automated and people are living in alien looking homes. A place where science and community are central and people look forward to a world of post-scarcity. Many Left Libertarians have suggested something like eco-friendly communities that would be artistically tailored to their natural surroundings. Their spheres of civic areas would be interlaced by streams; their places of assembly surrounded by groves; their physical contours respected and tastefully landscaped; their soil nurturd caringly to foster plant variety for themselves. The town will be decentralized and scaled to human dimensions Using recycling as well as integrating solar, wind hydraulic and methane-producing installations in the highly spotted patterns for producing power. Agriculture, aquaculture, stock raising would be regarded as crafts. Perhaps none of these things sounds interesting to you. The whole idea is that you will be allowed to help decide, rather than corporate and political interests that dominate our lives. Economic self-management should help facilitate people to consider their own ideas and use their own creativity to design the places that they want to inhabit. These possibilities would also create higher participation since individuals might actually have an influence on the outcome. While each community is autonomous they were not exist alone. Nearly all communities would be connected by a web and integrated into a federation. Federations have absolutely zero power. They only exist as a statistical and coordinating body. The federation would be a make up the delegates from each community. The federation is also a free association where communities can disassociate anytime. All interactions are designed so that self-interest facilitates mutual aid in cooperation of each community. Left Libertarianism works like any other political and economic system. The only difference is that is structured differently. These structures are designed solely for the purpose to maximize what is good in humanity, such as liberty and cooperation, while limiting what might be considered bad, such as greed and self-indulgence. This is why non-market Libertarians prefer this system. We cannot exactly spend our way into these types of societies through market forces. In almost every culture throughout time the Golden Rule has been a central ethical principle. Almost every religion and every school of philosophy have endorsed it. Today the very idea of living by this idea, whether it is in the workplace or our daily lives, has become an impossibility. Any economic or political system should help generate the basic ideals of this simple rule to produce a society based on fraternity rather than hostility. We need to stop living by the fallacy that just because something is economically good means that it must be good. Economic systems should be built for human beings and not the other way around. True progress can only be achieved when human beings are liberated in an existing environment that facilitates the liberty of personal self-management, workers self-management and economics self-management. We have seen what happens when only a few make our decisions and build a world around their game. They have stifled the very essence of what it means to be human. It is finally time to liberate and unleash the beauty that lies hidden within each of us, and help cultivate a better tomorrow.