Andy Blunden 1999
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I have been engaged in an exploration, an exploration of concepts and possibilities. I have relied sometimes on personal experience, sometimes guesswork and hearsay, but in the main, without claiming to bring before the reader new factual material, I have tried to introduce a new approach to tendencies and phenomena which are more or less widely known or observed. I claim nothing more in this respect. An examination of available an relevant empirical material is necessary before the ideas here can be more developed.
Nevertheless, I am trying to feel my way towards a new strategy for liberation which has its eye not on some achievable compromise but on the goal of the genuinely free association of free individuals, which does not want to suppress and regulate the market but looks for a way beyond reliance on judicial regulation, which bases its strategy on the presumption that the most abhorrent and extreme developments of economic rationalism will continue to grow, rather than on hoping to be able to hold back the clock.
To be able to fight for a new society it is important to be able to hold a clear vision of what it is you are fighting for. Central to such a vision is to be able to recognise what you are fighting for when it exists as an embryo in the present. My thesis is that voluntary association is the world of the future which exists in the here and now and that voluntary association is as well able to feed and clothe the world as is the system of money. Consequetnly, more tha anything else, this paper is an exploration of how people may and do cooperate with one another.
Further, there is an epistemological thread running through this paper: rationality is the internalisation of social relations. Consequently, my exploration of social relations is also an exploration of rationality. The future must be made consciously, so the promotion and extension of voluntary labour and association in general is simultaneously an organisational and theoretical task.
My suggestion for "further work" is more than anything else to do something to further voluntary association and reflect on what you learn. It can't do any harm. Every step forward in the free cooperation of individuals in meeting the needs of the community is a step towards better understanding the world in which we live and a step towards freeing ourselves from the dictatorship of money.