Direct Democracy and Alphabet Soup

How would intelligence services be organized in directly democratic societies? Would they even exist?

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No, secrets are fundamentally undemocratic.

How would the country defend itself against foreign espionage?

With the help of publicly open and accountable security experts. Do you think that's what CIA and NSA do though?

And how would these security experts be regulated and organized? How would information be gathered and analyzed, etc

Give the Democratic polity the power to dismiss the Vertically-run Intelligence agency's officials?

I dunno, they present their findings through public presentations and then the public decides what to do with them through direct referenda?

There will be no secrets in democratic "intelligence". The use of free and open source software will not be encouraged but mandatory. Any security expert found to spying on the citizenry or something will be subject to immediate recall.

Wouldn't that be comprising though? If a foreign entity is attempting to sabotage infrasteucture or assassinate someone, wouldn't you want to keep that underwraps until you could prove and foil the plot?

Maybe. Still seems Iffy though

Temporary secrecy seems okay, like secret salting operations by labor unions, but agreed with that long term secrets are an inherent ill. Something like maybe an unconditional 5 year maximum, along with "does all this still really need to be classified?" independent reviews regularly, say every 6 months.

but this mandates a huge turnover of intelligence assets for example, and then you need to train a huge amount of intelligence officers which sounds a lot like militarisation of society to me.

Isn't a key part of socialism, especially anarchism, the free rotation of positions in society, to decrease the chances of corruption or stagnation, and most importantly with the ultimate goal of cultivating a panoply of skills among all people, so that human potential can be fully actualized?

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I'd say its the maximalisation of freedom, self-expression and meritocracy. If all I want to do is fish and I'm very good at it then fuck you I'm not coming to your fucking political meeting or joining the horizontal Stasi, I want to fish. Zizek actually talks about this as his defence of bureaucracy. This is also one of the things I find strange about anarchism, it seems to reject the state by making everything and everyone the state, with all the responsibilities and demands that brings.

If too many of you want to fish and you're doing it unsustainably, then sorry fuck you, you don't get to fish.

that's where the meritocracy part comes in, social responsibility defines the limits and ability the allocation of economic space
though there has to be space for 'amateur' or more recreational stuff even if it is done more or less identically to the more professional, results-oriented operation
fuck you I'm fishing no matter what

the problem is that if you are not part of the horizontal stasi then the future stalins, gorbachevs and yelstins will be, and once they get old and bloated they will turn revisionist, the point is not to destroy bureaucracy completely but to avoid having the upper echelon of the government be composed of people in whose interests is to destroy socialism, just like it happened in real life

I'd imagine it would be a significant part of the vanguard, and serve a role in suppressing counter-revolutionaries and pushing society in a revolutionary direction

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You're conflating state with bureaucracy and organization, which isn't correct in either the anarchist or marxist terminology. The problem I have with Zizek's ideal of a bureaucratic socialism isn't that a bureaucracy exists, but rather that in his breif explanations of his ideal it seems that the bureaucracy is unaccountable and thus open to diverging interests of bureaucrat and worker. We can see this with the dismantling of socialism in socialist states as the years went by and arguably with Zig Forums where BO suddenly decided that having an open leftist board was no longer a good idea despite the wants of most posters. The anarchist propositions of federations and workers councils sounds less prone to such an event than Zizek's bureaucratic socialism, and with current technology easy enough to implement with more than enough time for people to go fishing or jack off to anime.

I think the truth is that many Marxist and left-wing organizations are democratic in name only.

The reality is that most of these organizations are top-down, centralized, bureaucratic entities who seem to be run by professional activists. Any attempts to challenge the leadership results in expulsion from the organization. So while the particulars of democratic organization are important, it's equally important to realize that actual democracy is pretty rare these days.

Even Marx himself fell victim to his own ego while organizing the International.

This. Having a bureaucracy is fine, because constant mandatory-meetings-to-decide-the-shade-of-muave-for-the-firehouse-bikeshed are annoying and impractical. What we propose isn't to wholly eliminate the bureaucracy, but to weaken it and ensure a steady rotation of the people in each of its positions, much like the jury system used for criminal trials today, or the sortition representative democracy employed by Athenians.

true, I was being imprecise with terminology and confusing. Sorry.
maybe, but it also sounds a bit shit and locked into the liberal idea of politics. as I wrote in a post in another thread just now:
there should be a return to the old socialist maxim of 'a man is an expert of their own lives' sprinkled with a technocratic abandonment of the liberal-bourgeois conception of the political man and political activity, where 'all matters pertaining to the state/society' fall under the political and everyone is expected to have a say in some way, usually through representation. in this conception the economic side of the society, both on the consumer and the producer-sides is fully techocratic and anti-democratic, even though these are the matters the generic person could claim expertise over and take much larger responsibility and control over. statecraft is a discipline and should be guided by expert opinion, many of the ills of bourgeois 'democracy' are the result of degeneration of public politics into popularity contests rather than contests of statecraft. Politicians compete on merits of electioneering, not the actual doing of politics. I'm going off-topic here but there needs to be a comprehensive analysis of competition, and I've been thinking a lot about that concept as of late.
and while good ways to avoid a calcified bureaucracy (to an extent), the idea of mandatory rotation or sortititon as suggested by still veers quite close to the you have to do politics type of limits on freedom. maybe it would work quite practically if the positions with mandatory rotations would be a relatively small number of high offices, so that there would be plenty of applicants and not so many offices one would have to fill

I agree that the unfortunately necessary replacement of expert leaders with expert attentionwhores under democracy is a problem we should strive toward a solution for. But I also think that the "encourage people to learn as many things as possible" policy could point to a third way out of the problem, by grinding down the "leader/follower dichotomy" from separate mindsets people become complacent in, to mere temporary configurations.

Perhaps not absolutely everyone, but I am firmly optimistic that if prepared for and regularly put into positions of responsibility, most people would drop the learned helplessness they've had inculcated by our current society and be capable of issuing competent directives, as well as (when their time in leadership ended) better understanding the abilities and limits of leadership as a follower.

Good idea, though I'd prefer a system of interlocking and parallel authority based on expertise. Again, people are the experts of their own lives - but leadership is also a quality and ability.

But that doesn't tell me anything about how they would be organized and held accountable

Direct democracy is unworkable at the national level.

What makes you say that? What do you think of paul cockshotts suggested model?


They would be developed in order to increase
not in the service of placing more and more artillery at greater and greater distances for the maximum amount of destruction
Intelligence is the integration and transmission (use) of the signals being sent from one's own neocortex. The signals are coming all the time, but they are often blocked, and if they managed to get through, they are misinterpreted, and loons take themselves to be God.
First you have to learn how to get unblocked, then you have to listen carefully, then you have to transform your character to adjust to be a perfect channel for these signals. The blocking comes when you are forced to worry about your survival all the time. Seated meditation is great, getting up to 1-2 hours of wakeful rest is fantastic, because it allows your mind to unfold. If you're running here and there to maintain some precarious position for someone else's livelihood then good luck trying to increase your intelligence.

Lay off the acid my man

Try and stop me, landlubber

That would make for a horrid security system. As soon as you publicly announce that there are suspected spies/moles under investigation then all the spies will scatter or just use these publications to their advantage.

Didn't Catalonia have its own secret police?

Tfw Titoism is more anarchist than anarchism

Panarchy and open information. The maximal possible attack is the shitposting campaign we face NOW, while the fruits are interesting.

Just raise your autism level and develop really wierd hobbies.

is this irony? not sure if orwellian or just shitposting

They need to let secrets get out sooner than they do . I am fucking pissed that the 'twins' study is going to be sealed at Yale til 2065 or so, and I'm either going to be dead or a fucking old fart.

By having specialized roles that have elevated privileges the group that manages intelligence will inevitably keep info from the people thinking its fine because they're the smart ones and know whats best and the "sheeple" cant handle it. Direct democratic societies with capitalism will function in a united states fashion. Assuming your democratic society has socialism implemented, the need for intelligence services implies that nations with capitalism still exist in your projected world. If thats the case then the united states would have faked some reason to start a war with the socialist territory and destroyed it, negating the question.