The Corporate State failed. The needs of citizens and the protection our natural environment, which we need to sustain our lives, cannot be met by the current system based on unbridled crony capitalism and the rule of a sociopathic ruling class blinded by unquenchable greed and a sense of entitlement.
It did take a little too long for the nonviolent revolution needed to address the depravity, oppression and exploitation by the current ruling elite to get going, but it is finally underway. Given the incredible amount of effort and resources the parasitic class put into deceiving the people during the last several decades, it is no wonder it took this long. For some background on that, take a look at this essay I published in my website: STRIKE BACK - 100 Weeks of Revolt Against The Corporate State.
The social justice movement is coalescing around the country. To get a good idea about what's going on, I suggest people visit this website: PopularResistance.org. And then, of course, there are the Occupy Wall Street, Occupy Oakland, Wave of Action, and many other similar sites around the country, and the world. I also highly recommend REPEACE, founded by my good friend, Andrea "Drey" Tosi (I mentioned him in this article). He's currently living in Switzerland; we've had quite a few chats via Skype and I've developed the highest respect and admiration for his work. There are a lot of really good people helping him in several countries.
Once you've made the determination that the system is corrupt to the core, that fundamental change is needed, and that you are ready to join in the direct effort to help bring about that change, you've joined the (peaceful) revolution. If so, from that moment on there are literally thousands of actions, both big and small, you can take which could all be considered acts of rebellion against the corporate state.
For those needing a refresher as to why we must rise up in opposition to the depravities of the current system, I suggest they review the work of: Henry A Giroux, Bill Moyers, John Nichols, Mark Leibovich, Chris Hedges, and Matt Taibbi.
So in the spirit of unity, camaraderie, brotherhood, and solidarity, I share these five easy ways to join the nonviolent revolution spreading around the country (and the world) like wildfire.
- Hit the streets: In my humble opinion, this is the truest manifestation of peaceful uprising, and it is enshrined in our Bill of Rights under the First Amendment: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. Protest rallies, especially if they are highly organized based on sustained campaigns, work. That is why the alliance between the American Police State and the corporate spy networks that have engulfed the entire country work so hard at trying to disrupt and contain protest rallies. I'll be attending 4 during the next couple of weeks.
- Research: This is extremely important for the movement. How are business cartels bribing the politicians? Which companies are funding anti-democratic, anti-workers, anti-families agendas? Who are the politicians involved with these organizations? This type of research is necessary to help us connect the dots. Once we fully understand who exactly is behind the depravities of the Corporate State, we can then come up with direct action campaigns against these targets... They could be negative public relations campaigns meant to inform the public at large about these bad actors; targeted pickets and protest rallies; boycotts; encouraging whistle-blowers to come forward with inside information revealing wrongdoing, and a thousand other (legal and peaceful) tactics.
- Boycotts: I've made a conscious effort to try to avoid patronizing companies like Starbucks, Walmart, McDonalds, Ikea, companies related to the Koch brothers, or ALEC. Not only I'm taking notes about companies pushing an anti-worker, oppressive and exploitative agenda, I'm working hard at sharing my findings with as many people as possible, encouraging them to do the same. Let's join together in this effort.
- Help the needy: Depending on your ability to do so, I'd like to encourage you to make a commitment to help the needy at least one time per week. I would like to especially encourage people to actively try to see if there are homeless people when they are out and about and give them some money; even a quarter if that's all you have. I've been trying to do that as much as I can. Today I went to a Trade Joe's and I saw this lady asking people for help (outside the store); when I came out I looked for her and gave her some money, looked her in the eyes and told "God bless you." I'm not religious, but I think sometimes people are comforted by hearing a word of kindness from strangers. If you can, help somebody with shelter, or food, or in any way you can (as long as you feel it is safe to do so).
- Support the work of activists: There are activists all over this country who are putting their hearts and souls into all kinds of social justice campaigns. Most of them are doing everything on a shoestring budget (out of their own pockets). They spend countless hours canvassing, knocking on doors, doing research, designing signs and posters, tending to the needy. I encourage those who are able to, to seek out these activists and help them in any way you can. Help them with the costs of flyers, posters, food for rallies, communications (or travel) expenses. They are the foot soldiers of the (peaceful) revolution and they are doing it all gratis. Remember, the right wingers are well-organized and well-paid. We need to find a way to support the work of our activists.
Again, there are a number of activists and organizations out there doing great work. For those who would like to join me in this effort, I put together some online tools at Market For The People. You can create your own group, set up events, and share information with other groups.
A great source of information about nonviolent resistance is Gene Sharp. Another good resource is "Beautiful Trouble - A toolbox for revolution."
As I continue reaching out to activists, I will be adding information resources to Market For The People. I also invite people to join a group I created here, TrueMarket. I use the word "market" as in market of ideas, including ways of removing ourselves from the influence and control of corporatist cartels, and finding ways to promote sustainable economic practices (food, housing, work).
Finally, it is very important that no matter what social justice cause we take on, that we stay fully engaged in the political process. We all know it is highly compromised, but we can't afford to give up on it. We need to be able to find ways to remove corporatist cartels' influence over our government institutions, and as we do that through activism, we need to convert those efforts into political victories as well. So we need to engage in this battle full spectrum, as activists in the fight for justice, and as engaged citizens in the political process.
Photo: Over Grow The System
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Sockpuppets & Trolls Watch: Their aim is to disrupt, to annoy, to introduce "noise" in order to prevent meaningful discussions of issues. Their tactics include casting aspersions (attack on the reputation or integrity), and ad hominems, where instead of addressing issues, they attack the character of people. They also engage in mockery, and logical fallacies. A good source of information about the tactics used by sockpuppets, trolls and hacks is "The 15 Rules of Web Disruption." Once you familiarize yourself with those tactics, it is pretty easy to spot the potential troll. Once spotted, the best thing is to ignore them. [Image credit: Jacob Bøtter from Copenhagen, Denmark]