Re: State a Myth? Not! Deep Anarchy Nonsense!

From: Russell Blackford (
Date: Sat Sep 08 2001 - 16:42:01 MDT

This all seems rather odd. The article being criticised seems to have been
published 11 years ago under Max's original name, if I understand the stuff
at the bottom correctly (or was it published even earlier, with Lloyd's
supposed rebuttal appearing in 1990?). Things have moved on a long way since
then. I wouldn't have expected anyone to discuss an issue such as the nature
of the state in terms of memes back in 1990, even though the meme meme <g>
was obviously around.

Actually, I'm not sure that it's a useful way of looking at the problem even
now. The word "meme" has its uses, as with Reason's Longevity Meme site. But
I'm sceptical about "memetics" as an explanatory system. What does Lloyd's
reference to memes add to O'Connor's reference to behaviour and thinking in
the para quoted?



Pete McAlpine said

>Interesting post on Anarchy, the State, & Memes I saw on another
>Rare Book Searches - Ruling Class/Conspiracy Experts:
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>Max T. O' Connor in his article Deep Anarchy referenced
>below tries to make the case that the State does not exist.
>His bottom line seems to be:
>'"The State" is really nothing more than statist behavior and belief - and
>elements of this can be found in almost everyone. I have argued that there
>is no boundary which can divide off some behavior as constituting "the
>State" from other behavior. This point can be made more forceful by
>considering the wide range of statist behavior and thinking found in
>(or "society"!). If it were possible to order these instances along a
>spectrum we might arbitrarily draw a line beyond which we would say the
>collection of behaviors was "the State." However, apart from the fact that
>it would be arbitrary (unlike the division of eagle parts from non-eagle
>parts), there is no single dimension to be ordered into a spectrum. People
>can be more or less statist at different times and in very different and
>incomparable ways.'
>Lloyd Again: However, this ignores the theory of memes. Memes
>are ideas that spread from one mind to another as a contagion. These
>ideas form systems...we could say, a "memetic field". Individuals in
>statist memetic field consitute of State to the extent they are in
>resonance with the State's memetic field. It is a matter of degee. QED
>More from Lloyd: Strange that an extropian would forget the theory
>of memes. Memes are to Social Organisms (A State is a special type
>of social organism along with ethnic groups, races, religions, etc.) as
>Genes are to Biological Organisms.
>Report #TL07D: DEEP ANARCHY --
>by Max T. O'Connor
>[Editor: This article is reprinted from Extropy #5, Winter/1990. Extropy is
>published by The Extropy Institute. Loosely speaking, extropy is the
>opposite of entropy. Extropy = A measure of life, intelligence,
>energy, vitality, experience, diversity, opportunity, growth, and
>Submitted by Lloyd Miller
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