1. Absence of any form of political authority.Seems pretty simple on the surface. Unfortunately the poor word has been around plenty long enough for history to have given it a number of other uses, some of them bizarre. Wikipedia:
There are many types and traditions of anarchism, not all of which are mutually exclusive. Anarchist schools of thought can differ fundamentally, supporting anything from extreme individualism to complete collectivism. ... [M]uch 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. Some individualist anarchists are also socialists or communists while some anarcho-communists are also individualists or egoists.How you get from "no rulers" to "complete collectivism" (and everything in between) within the same supposed philosophy has always been a mystery to me. But people are weird.
Some people are also stupid, as demonstrated by these brainless nihilistic twits who apparently called themselves "anarchists."
Personally I just avoid the word. It only leads to confusion. But let me tell you: Whenever I'm pointlessly plotting to blow up perfectly innocent bridges in Cleveland, I always go shopping at the FBI for my explosives and other supplies. They're so accommodating.