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AGORA HÁ UM GRUPO CHAMADO BIBLIOTECA KEVIN CARSON

 

The Countervailing Power of Superempowered Individuals
by Kevin Carson (2011)
http://desktopregulatorystate.wordpress.com/
NOVA VERSÃO (2012)

Manuscript last updated:  10/4/12

Note:   This is the latest version of the Table of Contents I first published in March 2011, which has been reorganized and expanded several times since then.  It’s a very rough draft, with much of the final content still in the form of placeholders (“insert material on x from y”).  Some chapters are missing entire subsections.  This is by far the roughest draft I’ve ever published. The idea is to follow Eric Raymond’s “release early” and “many eyeballs make shallow bugs” advice. Although the date of the post will stay the same, the organization will be revised from time to time and chapter files constantly updated to include the latest edits. The date of most recent editing will always be at the end of the text or pdf file of each chapter.
Thanks to Steve Herrick for the new format of the odt files 12/26/11.

Contents

Chapter One–The Stigmergic Revolution (odt)

Reduced Capital Outlays
Distributed Infrastructure
Network Culture
Stigmergy

Chapter Two–Networks vs. Hierarchies (odt)

The Systematic Stupidity of Hierarchies
Hierarchies vs. Networks
Networks vs. Hierarchies
Systems Disruption
Transition from Hierarchies to Networks
The Question of Repression
The Question of Collapse
Conclusion

Chapter Three–The Open Source Regulatory State (odt)

The Regulatory State:  Myth and Reality
Individual Super-empowerment
The “Long Tail” in Regulation
Networked Resistance as an Example of Distributed Infrastructure
Informational Warfare (or Open-Mouth Sabotage)
A Narrowcast Model of Open Mouth Sabotage
Attempts to Suppress or Counter Open Mouth Sabotage
Who Regulates the Regulators?
Monitory Democracy
“Open Everything”
Panarchy
Collective Contracts
Heather Marsh’s “Proposal for Governance”

Chapter Four–Fundamental Infrastructures (odt)

Hakim Bey
Bruce Sterling:  Islands in the Net
Phyles:  Neal Stephenson
Phyles:  David de Ugarte
Bruce Sterling:  The Caryatids
Daniel Suarez
John Robb:  Economies as a Social Software Service
MiiU and OpenWorld
Vinay Gupta:  Government in a Box
Meshkit Bonfire
Medieval Guilds as Predecessors of the Phyle
Older Platform-Module Architectures for the Alternative Economy
Modern Networked Labor Unions and Guilds as Examples of Phyles
Virtual States as Phyles:  Hamas, Etc.
A Proposed Phyle Organization for OSE Europe
P2P Foundation Phyle
United Phyles
Eugene Holland: Nomad Citizenship
Producism/Producia
Grow Venture:  The Networked Platform as Incubator for Enterprises
Venessa Miemis: Collaboratory
The Hub
Emergent Cities
The Value of the Phyle as Opposed to Other Models of Cooperation
The Incubator Function

Chapter Five–Fundamental Infrastructures:  Money (odt)

What Money’s For and What it Isn’t
The Adoption of Networked Money Systems
Examples of Networked Money Systems

Chapter Six–Fundamental Infrastructures:  Education and Credentialing (odt)

Introduction:  Whom Do Present-Day Schools Really Serve
Alternative Models
Potential Building Blocks for an Open Alternative
Open Learning Platforms
Open Course Materials
Open Textbooks
Credentialing

Chapter Seven–The Desktop Licensing Board (odt)

Legibility:  Vertical and Horizontal
Networked Certification, Reputational and Verification Mechanisms

Chapter Eight–The Open Source Labor Board (odt)

Historic Models
Networked Labor Struggle
Open-Mouth Sabotage

Chapter Nine–Open Source Civil Liberties Enforcement (odt)

Protection Against Non-State Civil Rights Violations
When the State is the Civil Liberties Violator
Circumventing the Law
Circumvention: Privacy vs. Surveillance
Seeing Like a State, and the Art of Not Being Governed
Exposure and Embarrassment
Networked Activism and the Growth of Civil Society

Chapter Ten–The Open Source Fourth Estate (odt)

The Industrial Model
Open Source Journalism

Chapter Eleven–Open Source National Security (odt)

The State as Cause of the Problem: Blowback
Active Defense, Counter-Terrorism, and Other Security Measures
Passive Defense
The Stateless Society as the Ultimate in Passive Defense
Disaster Relief

Appendices

Appendix 1.  Diebold and Sinclair Media:  Two Case Studies in Infor... (odt)
Appendix 2.  Case Study in Networked Resistance:  From Wikileaks to... (odt)
Appendix 3. A Model Anti-Corporate Campaign (odt)

Revised Table of Contents (with odt versions added)

Note. This is a reorganized version of the Table of Contents which I first published in March, with odt files added in addition to the pdfs. It’s a very rough draft. I’d say about half to two-thirds of the final content is still in the form of placeholders (“insert material on x from y”), and some chapters don’t even have most of their subdivisions sketched in. This is by far the roughest draft I’ve ever published. The idea is to follow Eric Raymond’s “release early” advice. Although the post date will stay the same, the chapter files are constantly updated to include the latest edits. The date of most recent editing will always be at the end of the chapter.

 

Contents


Chapter One–The Stigmergic Revolution (odt)

Reduced Capital Outlays / Network Culture / The Stigmergic Revolution / Hierarchies vs. Networks / Networks vs. Hierarchies / New Wine in Old Bottles / Systems Disruption / Conclusion

 

Chapter Two–The Open Source Regulatory State (odt)

Individual Superempowerment / Informational Warfare / Diebold and Sinclair Media: Two Case Studies in Informational Warfare / A Narrowcast Model of Open Mouth Sabotage / Attempts to Suppress or Counter Open Mouth Sabotage / Who Regulates the Regulators? / Monitory Democracy

 

Chapter Three–The Desktop Licensing Board (odt)

Introduction / Legibility, Reputational and Verification Mechanisms (De Ugarte, Suarez, Robb)

 

Chapter Four–The Open Source Labor Board (odt)

Historic Models / Networked Labor Struggle / Open-Mouth Sabotage

 

Chapter Five–Open Source Civil Liberties Enforcement (odt)

Protection Against Non-State Civil Rights Violations / When the State is the Civil Liberties Violator / Circumventing the Law / Circumvention: Privacy vs. Surveillance / Seeing Like a State, and the Art of Not Being Governed / Exposure and Embarrassment / Networked Activism and the Growth of Civil Society

 

Chapter Six–The Open Source Fourth Estate (odt)

The Industrial Model / Open Source Journalism

 

Chapter Seven–Open Source National Security (odt)

The State as Cause of the Problem: Blowback / Active Defense, Counter-Terrorism, and Other Security Measures / Passive Defense / The Stateless Society as the Ultimate in Passive Defense / Disaster Relief

About this Book


The subject of my previous book — The Homebrew Industrial Revolution:  A Low Overhead Manifesto — was the way in which falling capital outlays required for both information and material production was eroding the rationale for large organizations, and shifting the balance of power toward individuals, small groups and networks.  In particular, I focused on the radically reduced capital outlays required for manufacturing were giving rise to a low-overhead micromanufacturing economy in which the large quantities of land and capital to which the privileged classes had access were becoming increasingly irrelevant, and the material basis for the factory system and wage employment was collapsing.

In this book, my subject is how the same phenomenon is empowering individuals against the large, powerful institutions — both state and corporate — that previously dominated their lives.  The implosion of capital outlays associated with the desktop revolution, and the virtual disappearance of transaction costs of coordinating action associated with the network revolution, have (as Tom Coates has said) eliminated the gap between what can be produced within large hierarchical organizations and what can be produced at home in a wide range of industries:  software, publishing, music, education, and journalism among them.

The practical significance of this, which I develop in this book, is that many of the functions of government can be included in that list.  The central theme of this book is the potential for networked organization to constrain the exercise of power by large, hierarchical institutions in a way that once required the countervailing power of other large, hierarchical institutions.

Traditionally, the power of the large corporation was explained by the large amounts of capital required for manufacturing, broadcasting or publishing.  Such large amounts of capital meant that only the very rich, or a very large aggregation of rich people, could afford the outlays to undertake production, and that these people had to hire wage laborers to actually work the machinery for them.  Such outlays also required a large, hierarchical, bureaucratic institution to administer the plant and equipment.  And these large institutions, in turn, required other large institutions like regulatory agencies, big establishment unions, and the big establishment media, to act as watchdogs.

Unfortunately, despite Galbraith’s theory of countervailing power, in practice government agencies, corporations and media outlets tended to cluster together in complexes of allied institutions in which the ostensible regulators and regulated were actually on the same side.  Rather than the liberal “interest group pluralism” model implicit in Galbraith’s analysis, what we actually had was an interlocking Power Elite of the sort described by Mill and Domhoff.  The large size and small number of institutional actors, and the enormous entry barriers erected against ordinary people attempting to compete with them, made such a clustering of interests based on shared bureacuratic culture inevitable.

The desktop and digital revolution, the network revolution, and the forms of stigmergic organization that they make possible, together destroy the material basis for the old mass production/bureaucratic/broadcast model described above.  Instead — just as, in my previous book, I described the increasing ability of micromanufacturers with a few thousand dollars in capital to undertake forms of production previously requiring million-dollar factories — individually affordable capital goods for information production and network organization are leading to what John Robb calls “individual superempowerment.”  The individual increasingly has at her disposal the means of taking on large, powerful bureaucratic institutions as an equal.

Networked consumer, environmental and labor activism, with its ability to subject corporate malefactors to boycotts or tort actions, and to expose them to humiliating scrutiny, offers the potential to control and punish bad corporate behavior at least as well as did the regulatory state or the traditional press, and — insofar as they are not prone to the same sorts of cross-institutional collusion — to do an even better job of it.

This includes “culture jamming” of the sort employed by the McLibel defendants and by Frank Kernaghan against Kathie Lee Gifford.  It includes labor-led boycotts and information campaigns based on “open mouth sabotage” like those of the Imolakee Workers and the Wal-Mart Workers Association, and a whole host of online “employernamesucks.com” websites.  It includes targeted campaigns to embarrass such corporate malefactors in the eyes of their suppliers, outlets, major stakeholders, and labor and consumer interest organizations.  It includes networked activism through umbrella movements of labor, consumer and social justice organizations linked together for ad hoc single issue campaigns against a particular corporate criminal.  It includes efforts like Wikileaks to promote whistleblowing and provide secure platforms for circulating embarrassing information about corporate misbehavior.  It incorporates a large element of what John Keane calls “monitory democracy.”

Networked organization offers, as well, to supplant the regulatory state’s old licensing, authentication and quality certification functions.  If Consumer Reports was pithecanthropus in this evolutionary schema, and Angie’s List ishomo erectus, then the future lies with full-blown networked civil societies, organized on a voluntary basis, providing a context within which secure commercial relationships and other forms of cooperation can take place.  The future of this model has been described variously as neo-Venetianism or phyles (fictionally in Stephenson’s The Diamond Age and non-fictionally in de Ugarte’s work), the Darknet in Suarez’s Freedom, and “economies as a social software service” by John Robb.

In short, networked activism offers to do to the state and the large corporation what the file-sharing movement has only begun to do to the record industry, and what Wikileaks has barely even begun to do to the U.S. national security community.

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Comentário de Augusto de Franco em 13 outubro 2012 às 5:46

Há um novo capítulo 2 de abril de 2012

Chapter Two–Networks vs. Hierarchies (odt)

The Systematic Stupidity of Hierarchies
Hierarchies vs. Networks
Networks vs. Hierarchies
Systems Disruption
Transition from Hierarchies to Networks
The Question of Repression
The Question of Collapse
Conclusion
Comentário de Augusto de Franco em 13 outubro 2012 às 5:18

Kevin Carson

Origem: Wikipédia, a enciclopédia livre.
Parte da série sobre
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Kevin Carson é um anarquista individualista estadounidense, escritor de economia política. Mais recentemente se tornou pesquisador associdado do Center for a Stateless Society; é autor de três livros: The Homebrew Industrial Revolution[1],Organization Theory: A Libertarian Perspective[2] e Studies in Mutualist Political Economy[3]—assunto de um simpósio doJournal of Libertarian Studies[4]. Seus escritos sobre economia política são citados pela amplamente lida FAQ Anarquista[5].

Conhecido em seu meio por teorizar uma versão contemporânea do Mutualismo, une elementos do Liberalismo económicocom os do Socialismo. Ele identificou o trabalho de Benjamin TuckerRalph BorsodiLewis Mumford e Ivan Illich como fontes de inspiração para sua aproximação à política e economia[6].

Referências

  1.  Kevin A. Carson, The Homebrew Industrial Revolution: A Low-Overhead Manifesto (Charleston, SC: BookSurge 2010).
  2.  Kevin A. Carson, Organization Theory: A Libertarian Perspective (Charleston, SC: BookSurge 2008).
  3.  Kevin A. Carson, Studies in Mutualist Political Economy (Charleston, SC: BookSurge 2007).
  4.  Simpósio Temático sobre Estudos em Economia Política Mutualista
  5.  "Bibliografia da FAQ". An Anarchist FAQ. Infoshop.org. Retrieved May 23, 2009
  6.  Kevin A. Carson, IntroductionThe Art of the Possible (March 6, 2008).

[editar]Ligações externas

Comentário de Augusto de Franco em 13 outubro 2012 às 5:12

Author Archive

OCT 12, 2012

Réplica de Carson a Gregory

Posted by  in Mutual ExchangePortugueseStateless Embassies • Comments (0)

Kevin Carson: Já citei — muitas vezes — o dito de Stephen Biko segundo o qual a mais poderosa arma nas mãos do opressor é a mente do oprimido.

OCT 10, 2012

Corporações São Pessoas? Hitler Também Era

Posted by  in PortugueseStateless Embassies • Comments (0)

Em outras palavras, a ideologia espúria de “livre mercado” — por oposição à genuína — é o ópio das elites.

OCT 6, 2012

“Serviço Público”? Estou Tirando Meu Time de Campo

Posted by  in PortugueseStateless Embassies • Comments (0)

Em suma, o governo, em todos os níveis, oferece aquele tipo de “serviço público” do qual, se você não gostar, terá enorme dificuldade para desvencilhar-se.

OCT 5, 2012

Meritocracy

Posted by  in The Art of the Possible - Recovered • Comments (3)

Carson: The average member of the producing classes should rest secure in the knowledge that he would be able to support himself in the future, without depending on the whims of an employer.

OCT 5, 2012

“Building the Structure of the New Society Within the Shell of the ...

Posted by  in Left-Libertarian - Classics • Comments (0)

The capital and land of the rich is worthless to them without a supply of labor to produce surplus value.

OCT 5, 2012

The 47% Don’t Pay Taxes? Think Again, Mittens

Posted by  in Commentary • Comments (8)

Carson: Who depends on whom?

OCT 5, 2012

Romney, Banks, Regulations and “Garage Loans”

Posted by  in Feature Articles • Comments (2)

Carson: The state is the instrument of armed force by which an economic ruling class extracts rents from the producing majority of a society.

OCT 4, 2012

Новое осмысление «Теории и практики олигархического коллективизма»

Posted by  in RussianStateless Embassies • Comments (0)

Это революция, которая не может быть кооптирована старыми иерархиями, так как сама материальная основа их питания будет разрушена.

OCT 3, 2012

The Subsidy of History

Posted by  in Left-Libertarian - Classics • Comments (1)

Kevin Carson: History can’t be done a priori.

OCT 2, 2012

Reflexões a Partir da Pista de Aterrissagem Dois

Posted by  in PortugueseStateless Embassies • Comments (0)

Não acredito que o estado vá tornar-se menos totalitário em sua intenção ou em sua política, mas sua capacidade de preensão se debilitará mais depressa do que o estender-se de seu alcance.

Comentário de Augusto de Franco em 13 outubro 2012 às 5:11

The Stigmergic Revolution

Posted by  on Nov 12, 2011 in Commentary • Comments (7)

It was long believed that the queen played a central role in the complex social order of an ant colony, through the exercise of direct command and control over her subjects. Not so.  Biologist Pierre-Paul Grasse coined the term “stigmergy” for the anthill’s social organization  There is no central coordination, no hierarchy, no administrative mechanism.  Each ant’s behavior is entirely spontaneous and self-directed, as it responds independently to the chemical trail markers left by other ants.

Mark Elliot, whose doctoral dissertation is probably the best study on the subject to date, applied the term “stigmergy” to any form of human socialization in which coordination is achieved not by social negotiation or administration or consensus, but entirely by independent individual action against the background of a common social medium.

That’s essentially the organizational form used by the Linux developer community, by networked resistance movements like the Zapatista global support network of the 1990s, and by the post-Seattle anti-globalization movement. It’s the way Wikipedia and al Qaeda are organized.

Eric Raymond, writing on the open source software community, called it the “Bazaar” model.  Under the Bazaar model, every individual contribution is modular. Every participant is self-selected, and her action is based entirely on her independent judgment of what needs to be done. So all actions are not the result of consensus or majority consent, but of the unanimous consent of everyone participating. Those with the highest level of interest in a particular aspect of a problem and the highest affinity for finding a workable solution contribute to that part of the project.

In networked movements, any such contribution or innovation in a single cell will only be adopted by those who find it valuable. Those that are considered valuable instantly become the property of the entire network, free for adoption by all. So the self-selected individuals most interested in solving problems are spontaneously developing innovative solutions all over the network, and those solutions that work immediately become available for adoption by each cell deciding only for itself.

As Cory Doctorow points out, the record companies developed their DRM in the mistaken belief that it only had to be strong enough to deter the average user, and that the small number of geeks capable of cracking it would be economically insignificant. But in fact it takes only one geek to crack the DRM and post an MP3 on a torrent download site, and it becomes freely available to average users. In a stigmergic organization, the intelligence of each becomes the property of all with virtually no transaction costs.

In contrast to a hierarchically administered organization, in which proposed innovations must be evaluated and deliberated upon — gestated — by a central authority over a period of many months, a stigmergic network goes through generational changes in praxis with the speed of replicating yeast.

That’s exactly what’s happened with the social movements of the past year and a half — the arc from Wikileaks’ cable release in Summer 2010 to the latest developments in Occupy Oakland. Bradley Manning, a heroic soldier morally appalled at the atrocities committed by U.S. forces in Iraq, allegedly took it upon himself to release hundreds of thousands of classified diplomatic cables to Wikileaks. Wikileaks chose to post them online.

In the face of attempts to shut down Wikileaks by seizing their domain name or cutting off funding vectors like PayPal, the stigmergic innovation mechanism kicked into high gear.  Thousands of mirror sites sprang up all over the world. Thousands more websites and blogs posted the numeric IP addresses for Wikileaks’ sites. And hackers like The Pirate Bay’s Rick Falkvinge immediately started thinking about an open domain name service and open digital payment systems.

The Wikileaks cables included private diplomatic assessments of the level of corruption in the Tunisian government, which were quickly circulated by Facebook among the dissident community.  Mohamed Bouazizi, a poor vegetable vendor in Tunisia, set himself on fire in protest after being slapped in the face by a government official, sparking a revolution that has toppled several Arab governments and since spread from London and Amsterdam to Spain to Greece and Israel, to Madison and Wall Street — and outward again from Wall Street to hundreds of cities around the world.

Egypt’s attempt to destroy the revolution by shutting down the Internet spurred projects like ContactCon to a new sense of urgency in developing a “NextNet,” a global open meshwork that can’t be shut down because the only routing nodes are the users’ own hardware at the endpoints.

The Occupy movement itself operates stigmergically, with innovations developed by one node becoming part of the total movement’s common toolkit. Some Oakland demonstrators made the first experiment in occupying a vacant office building and encouraging the homeless to squat vacant and condemned buildings all around the city. They did this in a clumsy and imprudent way, unfortunately, provoking vicious police repression.

But the basic idea remains, and someone will soon do it better — because that’s the way stigmergy works. All across America, there are vacant office buildings and homes owned by banks, and millions of homeless people who need a place to sleep. There aren’t enough police and sheriffs’ deputies in the world to stop them from moving in, if they get it into their heads to start moving in on their own initiative.

What’s more, the homeless have nothing to lose — if they get kicked out, they were housed for the period of time while it lasted. And every single eviction becomes another point of failure for the system, to be publicized with cell phone videos and streaming Internet coverage.  Every single house becomes the site of another defensive stand, another PR nightmare for the local “authorities” hauling families out of their homes before the eyes of the world. Already, the Minneapolis movement has interposed itself in defense of foreclosed homeowner Monique White.

It’s only a matter of time until local Occupy movements become centers of innovation, not only in protest tactics, but in new forms of social organization in the communities where they live. In communities all across the country, people will realize that they’re neighbors who live in the same town or city — there’s no reason their cooperation has to be limited to the park or town square.

Occupy will become not just a protest movement, but a school for living: Local currency and barter systems for the exchange of skills by the unemployed, small-scale informal and household production techniques for unemployed workers who need to provide for as many of their own needs as possible through self-provisioning, intensive horticultural techniques like permaculture — the possibilities are endless.

Occupy Wall Street recently became a teach-in, with Michel Bauwens of the Foundation for P2P Alternatives speaking in Zuccotti Park on peer-production as a mechanism for creating value, and Juliet Schor discussing the decentralist and DIY economic ideas in her book Plenitude. A character in Marge Piercy’s Woman on the Edge of Time said that the new world, the revolution, wasn’t built by slogans and big meetings. It was built by people who found new ways of feeding themselves, new ways of teaching their kids, new ways of relating to each other.

So all over the world, we’re figuring out ways to live without the land and capital of the classes who think they own the planet, ways to make their land and capital useless to them with no one to work it for them. And they can’t stop us because we have no leaders.

In the words of Neo, in “The Matrix”:

“I know that you’re afraid … you’re afraid of us. You’re afraid of change. … I didn’t come here to tell you how this is going to end. I came here to tell you how it’s going to begin. …  I’m going to show these people what you don’t want them to see. I’m going to show them a world without you. A world without rules and controls, without borders or boundaries. A world where anything is possible.”

Or more succinctly, as Anonymous puts it:  Expect us.

Translations for this article:

Comentário de Augusto de Franco em 13 outubro 2012 às 5:10

Kevin Carson is a senior fellow of the Center for a Stateless Society (c4ss.org) and holds the Center's Karl Hess Chair in Social Theory. He is a mutualist and individualist anarchist whose written work includes Studies in Mutualist Political EconomyOrganization Theory: A Libertarian Perspective, and The Homebrew Industrial Revolution: A Low-Overhead Manifesto, all of which are freely available online. Carson has also written for such print publications as The Freeman: Ideas on Liberty and a variety of internet-based journals and blogs, includingJust Things, The Art of the Possible, the P2P Foundation, and his own Mutualist Blog.

© 2014   Criado por Augusto de Franco.

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