The Contradiction of Anarcho-Primitivists

Anarcho Primitivism sets arbitrary boundaries on what is “primitive”. Capitalism is the natural order because of the Action Axiom.

All individuals engage in purposeful behavior towards the fulfillment of desired ends by economizing and applying the scarce means in their control towards those ends. Also, all individuals vary in preferences. This is a synthetic a priori proposition.

“[T]he proposition that humans act … fulfills the requirements precisely for a true synthetic a priori proposition. It cannot be denied that this proposition is true, since the denial would have to be categorized as an action — and so the truth of the statement literally cannot be undone.”

Along with this, individuals naturally seek to maximize value by using the least amount of resources to accomplish the maximum amount of ends. This naturally means that we use technology as a means to maximizing a scarce resource like labor and time. So if AnPrims want to condemn agriculture, they must likewise condemn even stone age technology such as a sharpened stick used for hunting. Both of these things are technologies that help economic actors maximize value. Therefore, an AnPrims standards of what is “natural” and “unnatural” is arbitrary and therefore unnatural itself.

These economic principles are what allow prices to occur on the market as well help economic actors figure out what the most productive lines of production are.

The hardest thing in an economy is figuring out what to produce and how. Take building a railroad. The price mechanism on the market makes it so that actors can see that steel is cheaper than say platinum or gold for railroad ties. This is because the prices of gold and platinum have been bid up by other lines of production that need it more urgently. Without this pricing mechanism, communal central planning cannot figure out, accurately, what lines of production are most efficient for various resources. Therefore, anything other than capitalism is doomed to fail miserably on a grand economic scale.

Anarcho-Primitivism and collectivist anarchic ideas who are against private property ignore the fundamental idea that all economic action is human action. They find themselves in the awkward position of trying to be “natural” by arbitrarily setting limits on how man naturally takes economic action. This puts them in contradiction with their central virtue for how can one be natural when one limits what man naturally does?

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