It is perhaps just as well to begin this chapter by reminding ourselves that anarchy means literally no government. Consequently, there will be no laws. “I am ready to make terms, but I will have no laws,” said Proudhon; adding, “I acknowledge none.” ( 1 ) However revolutionary this may seem, it is, after all, not so very unlike what has always existed in the affairs of men. Without the philosophy of the idealist anarchist, with no pretense of justice or “nonsense” about equality, there have always been in this old world of ours those powerful enough to make and to break law, to brush aside the State and any and every other hindrance that stood in their path. “Laws are like spiders’ webs,” said Anacharsis, “and will, like them, only entangle and hold the poor and weak, while the rich and powerful will easily break through them.” He might have said, with equal truth, that, with or without laws, the rich and powerful have been able in the past to do very much as they pleased. For the poor and the weak there have always been, to be sure, hard and fast rules that they could not break through. But the rich and powerful have always managed to live more or less above the State or, at least, so to dominate the State that to all intents and purposes, other than their own, it did not exist. When Bakounin wrote his startling and now famous decree abolishing the State, he created no end of hilarity among 277the Marxists, but had Bakounin been Napoleon with his mighty army, or Morgan and Rockefeller with their great wealth, he could no doubt in some measure have carried out his wish. Without, however, either wealth or numbers behind him, Bakounin preached a polity that, up to the present, only the rich and powerful have been able even partly to achieve. The anarchy of Proudhon was visionary, humanitarian, and idealistic. At least he thought he was striving for a more humane social order than that of the present. But this older anarchism is as ancient as tyranny, and never at any moment has it ceased to menace human civilization. Based on a real mastery over the industrial and political institutions of mankind, this actual anarchy has never for long allowed the law, the Constitution, the State, or the flag to obstruct its path or thwart its avarice.