Fri, 30 Oct 2009

Do It Their Way

Tom Slee has written a book entitled No One Makes You Shop at Wal-Mart. The introduction of the book ends with "why we need to rely on collective action rather than individual choice to take us to where we want to be".

Poor Tom! He fantasizes that once the tools of coercive collective action are created, intellectual such as himself will be in charge of directing the action. And yet, when you point him at collective action gone wrong (e.g. Jim Crow laws, or the War in *, or the War on Drugs), he'll just tell you that the wrong people (e.g. George Bush) are in charge.

No, it's far more likely that when powerful tools are created, powerful people (politically and/or economically powerful -- which you surely must acknowledge doesn't include intellectuals) control them. That's why I oppose the creation and ongoing maintenance of these tools. Not because you can't do good things with them -- you can -- but it's more likely that bad things will be done with them.

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