December, 2020

Methodological Anarchism

  • Jason Byas

    PhD Student, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • Billy Christmas

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Anarchists all share the same basic public policy proposal: abolish public policy. Anarchists and their critics, then, seem to be speaking different languages. Political philosophers ought to abstain from the policy framework for two reasons. First, it is analytically impoverished inasmuch as, when followed to its logical conclusion, it is unable to engage with enormous areas of analysis that are relevant to what makes a society just or unjust. Second, it instills subtle prejudice against other important approaches to mitigating injustice that are unconcerned with public policy. The policy framework is a mode of engagement with principles or theories of justice that treats them as little more than prescriptions for state action. The policy framework ought not be conflated with what some political philosophers call “nationalism”: roughly, the idea that relations of justice only exist between compatriots—members of the same nation.