You Say You Want a Revolution?

As I sit here after the conventions absorbing the words of those who were spied on and arrested in Minneapolis/St. Paul and the journalists who were arrested trying to cover them I can’t help but wonder again, where’s the breaking point? There are many factors that contribute to what is euphemistically called social unrest. You’d think that lying the country into an illegal war for the clear purpose of economic imperialism might spur action. Or the wholesale dismissal of rights guaranteed by the constitution as well as the much older concept of habeas corpus. Perhaps the gross mistreatment and misuse of the military which has left families and service personnel in desperate straights would anger some in red states.
Now we have seen further evidence of the erosion of our rights by the harassment and unlawful detention of journalists at both the DNC and the RNC. The actions of the police in the name of the state were buttressed inside the RNC by snide remarks about the news profession and dismissals of community organizers the latter of which is not only a swipe at Obama but also every leader who coordinated any action to voice dissent. It is clear that the current government has no interest in protecting civil liberties. The cheers for Sarah Palin sent a chill down my spine as she cattily looked down on community work while trying to sell herself as connected to the common struggle which for her means pandering to big oil and the network of lobbyist that include the most notorious names in politics. Those concerns are the yoke she bears. John McCain called a protester who attempted to be heard during his speech “ground noise and static”—again the terrible cheers.
Although I think in theory there is a time for violent revolution that is not what I’m calling for. But what needs to happen amounts to a revolution of another kind and involves progress on the personal and interpersonal levels for every person. In tandem with that there can be a social revolution that effectively deals with the graft and general corruption within our government. But I ask again, what will be enough? For me that moment is long past but if one good thing can come of the treatment faced by journalists and other citizens at the two conventions is that perhaps some more people will move across the line and accept the view of reality in which true change means more than pulling the lever for a slogan, as good as it may be. There is clearly a difference between electing John McCain and electing Barak Obama. But the change you seek will not be delivered by anybody inside the system. The people must deliver change to their leaders which means holding them accountable for everything they do in real time.
It is absolutely imperative that we organize in whatever way necessary to prevent our government from starting more imperialistic wars, plundering every kind of national treasure and trashing our rights at each turn. That is the first responsibility that goes with the rights you are granted. You may have to fight to keep them. If we don’t fight now we will lose the right to do so. This is true even if Obama is elected, perhaps even more so. With McCain as president we would sooner run out of soldiers and need to institute a draft which was one significant factor the last time there was a shot at major social repair. An Obama presidency, though preferable by almost all measures, could have the detrimental effect of luring the population into a false sense of safety.
If you are in a swing state vote for Obama but if your state is more the 10 points in favor of either party consider voting for Ralph Nader, Cynthia McKinney or Bob Barr. We have other choices and if we don’t exercise the option it will be lost. A violent revolution would be hardly worthy of the name as it would be in the tradition of the oppressors. A real revolution would be to overthrow them without using their control tactics that we oppose. That is what I am advocating and it is possible, if every person would take responsibility for their role in this democracy not only at the polls, but after as well, we might have a chance.


~ by citizenworm on September 8, 2008.

2 Responses to “You Say You Want a Revolution?”

  1. You say that a real revolution would not use the control tactics that we oppose and yet you advocate voting. Isn’t voting the ultimate psychological control tactic that they use against us? Once every four years, a bunch of hopeless people who don’t know any better get all worked up arguing and fighting over who’s the better candidate when, in reality, both candidates are propped up by the broken system. Even the third party candidates give credence to the idea that people can work within the system and make any difference. The government in question is so heavy with influence and insiders that even third parties are unable to change things. It needs to be shaken and it needs to be shaken forcefully.

  2. I’m a little confused of how this revolution will work. Could you go into more detail? Personal and interpersonal?? I mean, no offense but that sounds like a bullshit cop out to me.

    Also, in regards to the video, if people are going to go to protests and want to make a scene and be heard they have to do more sit around swallowing tear gas. I bet 98% of the American population doesn’t even know that there were any significant protests at either convention let alone has heard the sub stories behind them.

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