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The Politics of Spontaneous Organization

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In politics, spontaneous organization is the idea that if left unhindered society will evolve in the strongest, most efficient and best way...


In politics, spontaneous organization is the idea that if left unhindered society will evolve in the strongest, most efficient and best way. In the United States, this idea is one of the main pillars of all types of conservative thinking.

Two Quotes from Wikipedia:
Many economic classical liberals, such as Hayek, have argued that market economies are a spontaneous order, "a more efficient allocation of societal resources than any design could achieve."[5] They claim this spontaneous order (referred to as the extended order in Hayek's "The Fatal Conceit") is superior to any order a human mind can design due to the specifics of the information required.[6] Centralized statistical data cannot convey this information because the statistics are created by abstracting away from the particulars of the situation.[7]

From <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spontaneous_order#Markets>
And:
Anarchists argue that the state is in fact an artificial creation of the ruling elite, and that true spontaneous order would arise if it was eliminated. Construed by some but not all as the ushering in of organization by anarchist law. In the anarchist view, such spontaneous order would involve the voluntary cooperation of individuals. According to the Oxford Dictionary of Sociology, "the work of many symbolic interactionists is largely compatible with the anarchist vision, since it harbours a view of society as spontaneous order."[9]

From <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spontaneous_order#Markets>
Spontaneous organization, as it is applied to politics and economics (there are also scientific applications of it), is a political rightwing idea; in America, it is mainly Republicans who hold such ideas. The idea is that by taking our hands off the economy, by not managing the economy, everything will work out, eventually, for the best. For some this idea also applies to government. Although most Republicans are not anarchist, they do promote less government; the less government there is--just enough to hold everything together--the better off we are because then the principle of spontaneous organization will do its work. It would enable society to naturally evolve to be as it should. Or so the thinking goes.

To be clear, I accept the basic concept of spontaneous organization, although I do not think it is magical, nor even spontaneous. Some people seem to promote spontaneous organization as almost magical, that left to itself, without regulations or law, everything would work out. Now, I don't know if they actually think it is magical, but watching Republicans talking about slashing the budget, cutting taxes, cutting regulations, I do wonder if they think the magic of spontaneous organization can take care of nations and individual problems.

Also, I suspect the conservatives who espouses this idea do not really understand it. They do not see the idea from a big picture vantage point. They only see the idea from a very narrow point of view which allows them to use it to support anything they feel pushes more profits for business. In reality, spontaneous organization has been at work, and the society we live in is the result of that work.

The United States, with its laws, regulations, and rules, is a product of spontaneous organization. So are Brittan, Canada, France, China, Russia, Iran, etc. Spontaneous organization, like natural evolution, is fond of experiments. Some of the experiments work, some do not. A nation that does not work goes extinct, one that does work, does not. To say we must create certain conditions for spontaneous organization to work, such as low taxes, and less regulations is non-sense. Spontaneous organization is working, right now.

The laws, rules, regulations we have right now are a working of spontaneous regulation. Which does not mean the laws, rules, and regulations are good and will work, only that someone felt they were needed and managed to get them enacted. If those rules do not work, there will be problems and someday the rule will be changed and maybe a better one put in its place. If the rules do work, everyone will simply take them for granted and hardly notice them.

The real question is what kind of society do we want and how can we structure our society through laws, rules and regulations to best get there. Because there will always be laws, rules, and regulations.

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