Why are furries generally always socialist?
I was just thinking -- that's really the case. I can't think of any furry capitalists. That is, there was Shaun Altman, but he was a crook. He used to hustle land, poker tables, and of course made the fake stock exchange that collapsed -- so I guess he was a capitalist. Shaun wasn't really a true furry though. Most organized furries *are* socialists.
Think of Michi Lumin and the Luskwood furries. I'll never forget when the Lindens FINALLY started reforming the group tools, after several years of enforced socialism -- groups were set to have votes for officers, then officer recall if you didn't like that person if they became a "tyrant" ostensibly (it was never used that way), and of course forced distribute of proceeds from land or object sales. The furries were furious that the Lindens were going to change out their initial hippie tools and make them more compatible with life. For one, there was that evil "officer recall" which was just sheer collectivist terror. It enabled people who paid tier to be voted out of their own group and expelled from the group land -- it was just awful.
I will never forget the time I was griefed by Chad Statotsky (who, not surprisingly, later became Shaun's boyfriend) who joined my open group, then engineered "officer recall votes" on me in my groups, so that I was frozen from acting in my group where I owned most of the land. (The wrecker Juani Wu did the same thing in the Metaverse Justice group, forcing officer recalls on me repeatedly to try to get me out of the group.)
Back in the early days, I hadn't figured out to put alts in every group at first and had a terrible time -- and when I complained about this form of sinister griefing to Blue Linden, he said, "Well, you'll just have to campaign to win the trust of your group" -- as if I had to run for election in order to...keep land that I had paid for myself, and held the tier on. It was awful -- these Lindens were such hippies. Anshe Chung tipped me off: that if I were expelled from my own group, if I kept an alt within the group with invite powers, that alt could then invite me back. Of course, in a group with multiple warring officers, there were constant shenanigans with this feature.
It took lots and lots of work to get the Lindens to change their early hippie ways. This blog post I wrote at the time was actually read by Cory Linden and I think the Lindens did finally realize that if they were going to have real-life businesses in their world, they had to deflect some of the enforced hippie stuff.
Like the ability of anyone made officer in your land to be able to manage it also being able to sell that land out from under you or transfer the land out of the group to his own group, a frequent griefscapade in those days. Like the forcible transfer of all income to the group equally to every member regardless of what their contribution was or whether they even logged in. There was no granulation.
Daniel Linden, who was something of a hippie himself (he was for leaving the Goreans to make their own laws and if any of their victims complained, letting their sim managers take the complaints), wanted to have groups that could accommodate any lifestyle, whether BDSM dom running everybody rigidly or hippie collective or families businesses in between -- but it took some doing to get him to see the destructiveness of some of the group tools even for their stated collectivist goals (a problem one still has with Soft Linden and his inability to admit and validate the problem of returning objects in shared on group land, which destroys non-copy objects).
So I'll reprint this discussion here as the mods might get it given how flightly the personalities are involved. Remember that awful Pussycat Catnip?
When the Lindens announced the abandoned land thing, I wrote this on the thread:
"No, it is not a positive change to introduce a huge and sudden glut of land into an already devalued land marked -- this is communism, whereas Second Life is supposed to have a capitalist free market simulation."
There are quite a few suck-ups in this thread praising the Lindens because they can only think in terms of what they see in front of them, and if there is abandoned land with junk on it in front of them, they think, by all means, let's have all that stuff go to sale automatically.
Pussycat gives me the usual hippie socialist crap:
"SL is supposed to be a world where we get together and play with each other and create things. That it has a market at all is only secondary. The nature of what that market evolves into is dictated by the primary goal of bringing people together to play and create, and is not 'promised or guaranteed' to be any particular model or ideology."
Supposed to be? Fuck that shit.
No, no, no.
There is absolutely no concept that says "Second Life HAS to be a sandbox" and "the market is secondary".
That's only one perspective -- and usually happens to be the furry perspective, BTW (Luskwood, e.g.)
But it's very wrong to impose this on the entire world.
That's the feature of capitalism versus socialism -- if you have capitalism as the basis, socialism can deviate and mooch off it. But if you have socialism as the basis, capitalism is suppressed. So that's not freedom.
If you want a collectivist sim, then, make one. Do not impose that on everyone else who wants normal market sims.
The Lindens are in business to sell sims and currency. And it's more than fine that some of us, are too. If we weren't, they wouldn't be. It's just that simple. The market sustains those who want to play collective farm -- and that is what is secondary, not the market. The market is primary, and that's how it should be to sustain the world.
By claiming "it is not promised or guarantee to be any one ideology" in fact you are cleverly trying to impose one idea -- the "no market" sandbox idea, and act as if the market is "secondary" or "optional". It's not. It's fundamental.
Since time immemorial, real-life human societies have made markets and bought and sold at a profit. It is only with brutal force is this disrupted in some places at some historical periods (i.e. Soviet Union, 75 years).
The tabula resa is the market; the sandbox is built on top of that as a deviation.
The primary goal is not "to bring people to play with each other and create things". That may be your goal; it may be some people's goal. It isn't even the formal mission of LL, if you read it, which says something like "to connect us all to a virtual world to better humanity".
But it doesn't matter even what the original framers think -- SL is too big, too diverse, and too free, fortunately for us all, to have to be under the yoke of collectivism.
Open source sims (in culture and in code) without IP protection, monetarization, economies, DRM, etc. don't thrive. They're like Biosphere 2, artificially maintained by outside wealth and unable to sustain themselves."
Now, for the literalist collectivists out there, no, saying that the primary model should be capitalism isn't merely "imposing your world model on the world".
And that's because, as I just said, if you set the model default as capitalism with freedom, then you can create a restriction within it, with nerdy little socialist notions, within that context -- socialism on one sim. Wantfrieswiththat, which is Gwen's socialist paradise, is a good example of that concept -- it's capitalism-sustained with the owner, who has a good income in RL, as the backup.
Which brings me to a funny point about Michi. When we were doing that excercise of meeting in groups and making proposals to the Lindens, back when they used to work that way (imagine!), Michi INSISTED that there be collectivized ownership built into the tools -- that there not be one owner only. She absolutely HAD to have uravnilovka (forced levelling) so that her collective of furries in Luskwood, who shared their tier or whatever, could all be co-owners.
The Lindens made a system that had the ability of the initial owner make the decision to turn other officers into owners with owner powers just like him -- but it had to go in sequence. First one owner, then he turned on the other owners.
The result would be the perfect collective farm soviet that Michi dreamed of -- except she couldn't bear the sequencing. She insisted that the Lindens have a system where it occur simultaneously. But this just wasn't possible. You had to have one person found the group, then add others. It was just too complicated (and a completely crazy and hardly used edge case) to insist on everybody in a group simultaneously pulling the lever to form their collective. Michi bitched and bitched about this on the forums.
I kept pointing out the obvious: that if you make markets and individual rights be the tabula resa, you can branch off and make your socialisms and BDSM and Gor kingdoms off that basis, but it wouldn't work visa versa. If you kept the socialized hippie tools SL originally began with, you couldn't granulate the circulation of money, for example. Some people want group vendors or group objects to pay out only to people who worked in the group or contributed, not to every member/customer/tenant/role-player.
How is it that furries came to be socialist? Is it that they imagine this to be a more primitive form of organization?