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INSTEAD OF A BOOK. THE INDIVIDUAL, SOCIETY, AND THE STATE.

earned? My questions are quite distinct. Thus an army under the system of conscription is a case of compulsory co-operation: a band of brigands is a case of voluntary co-operation. I hate both. I would join a voluntary association directed against either or both. Neither do I put these questions in order to cast doubts on the feasibility of Anarchy at the present time. I ask merely for information from those who are, in my opinion, best able to give it.

Wordsworth Donisthorpe,

London, England

 

 

VOLUNTARY CO-OPERATION.

[Liberty, , 1890.]

It is questionable whether Herbert Spencer will relish Mr. Donisthorpe's classification of him as one of four lights of Anarchy. I think he would be justified in putting in a disclaimer. No doubt Anarchy is immeasurably indebted to Mr. Spencer for a phenomenally clear exposition of its bottom truths. But he entertains heresies on the very questions which Mr. Donisthorpe raises that debar him from recognition as an Anarchist. His belief in compulsory taxation and his acceptance of the majority principle, not as a temporary necessity, but as permanently warranted within a certain sphere, show him to be unfaithful to his principle of equal liberty, as Mr. Donisthorpe has convincingly demonstrated in his recent book on "Individualism." I am sure that his answers to Mr. Donisthorpe's questions would widely differ from any that Mr. Yarros or myself could possibly make.

When it comes to Auberon Herbert, the community of thought is closer, as on practical issues he is pretty nearly at one with the attitude of Liberty. But I fancy that Mr. Donisthorpe would have difficulty in driving all three of us into the same corner. Before he had gone far, the ethical question of the nature of right would arise, and straightway Mr. Yarros and myself would be arrayed with Mr. Donisthorpe against Mr. Herbert.

As one of the two remaining "lights of Anarchy" appealed to, I will try to deal briefly with Mr. Donisthorpe's questions. To his first: "How far may voluntary co-operators invade the liberty of others?" I answer: Not at all. Under this head I have previously made answer to Mr. Donisthorpe, and as to the adequacy or inadequacy of this answer he has as yet

made no sign. For this reason I repeat my words. "Then