Anarchism is a political philosophy which considers the state undesirable, unnecessary and harmful, and instead promotes a stateless society, or anarchy. It seeks to diminish or even abolish authority in the conduct of human relations. Anarchists may widely disagree on what additional criteria are required in anarchism. The Oxford Companion to Philosophy says, "there is no single defining position that all anarchists hold, and those considered anarchists at best share a certain family resemblance."
There are many types and traditions of anarchism, not all of which are mutually exclusive. Strains of anarchism have been divided into the categories of social and individualist anarchism or similar dual classifications. Anarchism is often considered to be a radical left-wing ideology, and much of anarchist economics and anarchist legal philosophy reflect anti-statist interpretations of communism, collectivism, syndicalism or participatory economics. However, anarchism has always included an individualist strain supporting a market economy and private property, or morally unrestrained egoism. Still some individualist anarchists, like Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, were also socialists.
Others, such as panarchists and anarchists without adjectives, neither advocate nor object to any particular form of organization as long as it is not compulsory. Differing fundamentally, some anarchist schools of thought support anything from extreme individualism to complete collectivism. The central tendency of anarchism as a social movement has been represented by anarcho-communism, with individualist anarchism being primarily a philosophical or literary phenomenon. Some anarchists fundamentally oppose all forms of aggression, supporting self-defense or non-violence, while others have supported the use of some coercive measures, including violent revolution and terrorism, on the path to an anarchist society. -- Wikipedia.
This comment below reminds me that I have been needing to have a few words on this subject:
Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "The Fort Knox Contretemps. . .":
Just because you are an enemy of my enemy doesn't make you a friend. Under normal circumstances you may well be my enemy, so therefore eventually, you will become my enemy once again. Anarchists have nothing in common with constitutionalists, patriots etc. The founders didn't want anarchy but limited, small government. A country where the rule of law was applied justly.
I fear the void left by the collapse of the current government filled by anarchist's is as dangerous as the continuation of the path to totalitarianism.
There are "anarchists" who assassinate politicians.
There are "anarchists" blow things up and kill innocents along with them.
There are "anarchists" who engage in street fights and break windows at the drop of a hat for just about any reason, or no reason at all.
Then there are anarchists who condemn violence in the service of anarchism as just as oppressive as state violence and who would only use violence in self-defense. For example see "You can't blow up a social relationship."
You can't blow up a social relationship. The total collapse of this society would provide no guarantee about what would replace it. Unless a majority of people had the ideas and organization sufficient for creation of an alternative society, we would see the old world reassert itself because it is what people would be used to, what they believed in, what existed unchallenged in their own personalities.
Proponents of terrorism and guerrilla-ism are to be opposed because their actions are vanguardist and authoritarian, because their ideas are wrong or unrelated to the results of their actions, because killing cannot be justified, and finally because their actions produce either repression with nothing in return or an authoritarian regime.
Anarchist poster denouncing bombing as a tactic.
Then there are minarchists:
In civics, minarchism (sometimes called minimal statism, small government, or limited-government libertarianism. refers to a political ideology which maintains that the state's only legitimate function is the protection of individuals from aggression, theft, breach of contract and fraud. (Such states are sometimes called night watchman states.) Minarchists defend the existence of the state as a necessary evil, but assert that it may only act to protect the life, liberty, and property of each individual.
A minarchist state would therefore consist of very few branches/parts of government, in the most minimal way - such as, for an example, courts (but not necessarily). Generally, minarchists identify themselves within the broader propertarian libertarian movement.
Samuel Edward Konkin III, an agorist, coined the term in 1971 to describe libertarians who defend some form of compulsory government. Konkin invented the term minarchism because he initially felt dismayed of using the cumbersome phrase limited-government libertarianism. Some classical liberals, who believe in the necessity of the state, label themselves as minarchists to differentiate from market anarchists.
Contrastingly, market anarchists—who dismiss the legitimacy of all forms of compulsory government and advocate private law, private arbitration, and private defense—see the minimal state as an unnecessary evil on the grounds that it infringes on individual liberty by unnecessary taxation, wars, and police brutality. -- Wikipedia.
All this is the long way around to say that there are almost as many different kinds of "anarchists" as there are, well, anarchists.
Will Mama Liberty and other anarchists please chime in at this point? You explain yourselves better than I can.