Thursday, August 4, 2011

Truth is Treason in the Empire of Lies... a work in progress

How does one go about committing a successful treason?  How do you turn two hundred and fifty years of social inertia into a battering ram to tear down injustice?  I’m not Martin Luther King or Gandhi or Thomas Jefferson... I’m just a man who looks at the world and finds himself saying “We are better than this.”

I can’t be the only one smart enough to realize that war is ultimately an exercise in self destruction.  I can’t be the only one to look at government and recognize that the promise of protection offered by politicians is only a short step from the protection offered by robber barons and mafia bosses... give us our cut or bad things might happen.

The purpose of government is to provide to its citizens the things that they could not normally obtain through other means.  It exists to serve the people under its protection.  The very existence of government is predicated by the willingness of individuals to come together and operate for the greater good.  When government no longer serves to protect the interests of its constituents, then it is time for that government to be dismantled and a new government to arise in its place.

That was the reason for the Declaration of Independence.  It wasn’t merely oppressive taxation or the brutal suppression of ideas that brought about revolution... it was the idea that mankind could do better.  Mankind can still do better.  We haven’t created a perfect social construct that addresses all the needs of humanity or asks the deeper questions about what we, as people, need from government.

The current incarnation of law and order in the United States is little better than the oppressive regimes that sent people fleeing into its arms.  It isn’t merely a problem with government... it is endemic to the society itself and it is a function of our biological programming for the survival of  the fittest.  Those without morals are most likely to thrive in any environment.  The belief in things like law, justice and human rights are a handicap to the survival of the moral individual and they are the very weapon with which the immoral beat down the masses.  The unwillingness of good men to do bad things in the name of pragmatism is a liability to their prosperity.  All human institutions require constant vigilance on the part of its participants, and America has failed to be vigilant.

The consequences of our inattentiveness are readily apparent.  Government and commerce have developed an unhealthy relationship.  All men seek security and the almighty dollar represents security to many.  This allows those who have the greatest monetary wealth to use those dollars as a lever of influence against those elected by the people.

Money itself has a sort of gravity.  It swirls and flows through the system, but it forms currents and pools, and inexorably flows towards the places where it has already accumulated.  But monetary wealth is not an indicator of fitness or merit... it is simply an indicator of an entities willingness to exploit those around them.  Profit can only be recognized by exploiting an inequality of trade.  Too often, it is the labor of a lifetime that citizens are trading for a few dollars to fill their guts and put a roof over their head and when they can no longer labor, they find themselves on the fringes of society with no protection.  Clearly there is an inequality of trade when corporations drop nickels and dimes into the pockets of laborers for a days work then charge 1000 times that for the product of their labor.

We have allowed the illusion of security to take the place of the reality.  We build enterprises dedicated to the attainment of money while we ignore the REAL costs of attaining that money in wealth that we cannot replace.  What is the illusion of security worth?

Is the ability of this planet to sustain life worth the cost of “cheap” energy from burning petroleum and coal?  Is wearing a name brand on your T-shirt worth the misery of the 13 year old victim of a sweat shop in South America?  Is it worth $50 for an ounce of perfume because someone told you whale vomit smells better than humanity?

We have built an economy dependent on consumption without regard for consequence.  We have abandoned the role as stewards of the planet and become parasites instead.  We’ll sell you soap that dries your skin and moisturizer to fix the problem and let the packaging they come in swirl into a mountain and never ask the question of ourselves “Is this the right thing to do?”

And you can’t walk away from it anymore.  You can’t escape from the insanity that has infected the global community.  If you find somewhere with clean water and fresh air and try to live their, governments and corporations will come and tell you that you must pay them for the water and the land and the air.  Even rainwater has become corporate property in some areas.

We need a change of paradigm and we need it now.  It is clear that capitalism under the guiding hand of corporations is not a healthy or sustainable means to drive our society.  It is time for something different.

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