One of my music buddies recently shared the following link with me:
This video is on a marvelous little website called “everythingisterrible.com.”
I don’t mean to judge, but I do feel compelled to comment.
Yes. Everything is terrible. The economy sucks. The political leaders are incompetent and hopelessly biased towards capitalism. The environment is going to shit. People are apathetic or oblivious to it. The occupy movement was a bright shining light that has now fallen limp and lifeless. Everything is terrible. And according to such a language of absolutism, by that logic; nothing is terrible.
Such absolutism is rife within the occupy movement. There are absolutists who are dedicated to a “diversity of tactics.” And there are absolutists who are committed to nonviolence. Once again I’m tempted to denounce the so-called tacticians of diversity. In many senses this would reduce me to white supremacy – and I thought I rejected that path a long time ago. But for me to embrace a diversity of tactics is quite contrary to my expectant hope of a moral evolution.
One thing I know to be true is that the tacticians of diversity would call my dependance on morality a bunch of simplistic drivel. And that might be true. But their own criticisms reduce themselves to critics rather than participators.
The only way for nonviolence to work is for it be participatory for all of humanity. Tall enough order? Are we going to need a bigger internet and global consciousness? I recognize that there is much violence in nature. And there is a comforting simplicity to that fact also. However, humans talk and reason and build and problem solve. All of these behaviors are fundamentally cooperative and seemingly unique to humanity.
And while I hope that we can all take the high road together (forgive the hierarchical metaphor), I recognize and respect the fact that people want to support a diversity of tactics. History has set an impossibly difficult precedent of violent revolutions. And I don’t begrudge anybody for expecting the near future to become violent in America. Of course, if we look around we would all see the massive amount of violence in America already. Violence from the 1% upon the 99%. And humanity’s unimaginable destruction to the environment. So, how can I begrudge anybody for wanting to fight back in self defense. I can’t.
The theologian Reinhold Niebuhr wrote a book called Moral Man In An Immoral Society in 1932. I found it to be a bunch of self-congratulatory non-sense. But you might like it.
He discovered that his own morality changed significantly when his country was at war (in this case WW1). Niebuhr embraced a sort of tribal nationalism and saw some sort of necessity in getting involved with the first world war. He repeats the horrible cliche that national interest is always self-interest. This is the same kind of colonialist thinking that gets echoed by foreign policy “experts.” How long will it take people to learn that “thinking globally” leads to treating the world as a whole without borders. So the only foreign policy plan that anybody really needs to advocate is the one that dissolves all state and national lines. This wouldn’t have to be any sort of new world order, it would suffice for humanity to be one big self-governing organism devoid of any hierarchy, class, or governing body. It would be anarchy in its purest sense, and I for one, believe that it could work if the media sold it right…
Everything exists. This sort of radical positivism that I get is probably nothing more than some existentialist slop. But it also feels like anarchy at its finest. Anarchism is a way of affirming life and community that remains intellectually and emotionally pure for me.
Some people think that anarchy is nothing more than a transition between governments. This might be the case if that’s how you want to define it. But I suspect that if we all had a little time to do some consciousness raising then we would probably be able to discern a successful way of making anarchy work. Any good anarchist will tell you that there is actually quite a bit more organization that goes into practicing anarchy since it requires so much more responsibility and self-sufficiency. Being a machine dependent slave to capitalism is a significantly more lazy lifestyle.
Some people have declared today the beginning of our American Spring. I think that might be calling it a little premature, but hey time is relative. Happy St. Paddy’s day.
Oh, by the way – did you know that St. Patrick was an oppressed slave who found solace in prayer? Here are some words attributed to him:
May the Strength of God pilot us.
May the Power of God preserve us.
May the Wisdom of God instruct us.
May the Hand of God protect us.
May the Way of God direct us.
May the Shield of God defend us.
May the Host of God guard us.
Against the snares of the evil ones.
Against temptations of the world
May Christ be with us!
May Christ be before us!
May Christ be in us,
Christ be over all!
May Thy Salvation, Lord,
Always be ours,
This day, O Lord, and evermore. Amen.