Coercive Power | Beyond Intractability
The French Liberals of the early nineteenth century also recognized the distinction between voluntary and involuntary exchange, articulating that difference as a class struggle between warriors (bandits) and the industrious class (). This struggle can be expressed in many ways: power vs. liberty, takers vs. producers, administrators vs. producers, force and coercion vs. persuasion and cooperation, idlers vs. laborers, predators vs. creators, moneyed elite vs. workers, exploiters vs. creators, status vs. contract, or rulers vs. the ruled. The political means is merely a way to sustain flows with minimal effort — the desire of getting something for nothing.
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For some writers, these essays led to better-paying work. But for many the thrill of reaching an audience had to suffice. And placing a delicate part of your life in the hands of strangers didn’t always turn out to be so thrilling. Personal essays cry out for identification and connection; what their authors often got was distancing and shame. Bennett pegged her Slate piece to an essay that Carmichael and I edited at Jezebel, written by a woman who had met her father for the first time as a teen-ager and engaged, under emotional coercion, in a brief sexual relationship with him. Bennett deemed the personal-essay economy a “dangerous force for the people who participate in it.”
In anarchy, force and coercion are not used to exchange or satisfy needs and wants; persuasion, cooperation, free association, and voluntary exchange are the acceptable avenues. Free association is truly free, there is no force and coercion and no political interference is used to exchange wealth. No property titles are created through processes of political or .