Skip to main content

I write today to, hopefully, start a dialogue and ongoing series about the concept of decolonization. I'm fairly new to the term. Some of the concepts have been in me for a while, but I did not have connection to a philosophy or political movement, much less a name. So, I'll share my entry point and early thoughts about decolonization. I invite you to share yours.
When I left my house in Boston and headed to New York City to be present in Liberty Square last September, I was going as an "Occupier", I suppose, since the action was called "Occupy Wall Street". So many of us felt so strongly that the message about the deep layers of corruption in our economic and political systems resonated, that we didn't even think about the word defining this burgeoning movement.

For me, the Occupy movement was connected to Arab Spring and the Encampanadas of Spain and even the Green movement in Iran. And Palestine.

Palestine. How could I even think for one moment that "occupying" was a good thing? Well, clearly, I didn't think.

It didn't take long, though, for some to realize that the corruption wasn't just about banking and money in politics. The corruption goes to the core of the culture we're living in. Some of the very tenets we base our value system on are unjust. Built right into what we believe is an acceptance of being the generators of pain and suffering for others. What we're seeing in the blatant exploitation and inhumanity of the financial crimes is reflective of something in all of us: a predatory nature. A predatory nature that we socially codify through memes such as "possession is 9/10ths of the law" and "survival of the fittest" and "competitive edge" and "independence" and "free market". That it is radical to suggest that a culture, which measures profit-making as the key indicator of it's health, is based on something ugly, tells us that we have deeply rooted ways of being which foster the corrupt systems we live within.

I've had these thoughts for a long time. In my youth I was a very competitive athlete. I had a prosperous early career as a computer programmer in the 1980s. I have multi-faceted,  'pedigreed' American ancestry. A direct ancestor was celebrated for being the leader of the people who "forged the first great pathway west" through Kentucky and Tennessee. Family documents show them celebrating their colonizing efforts. (ironically, another branch of my family is quite likely related to Cherokee Chief Ross who led his people along the Trail of Tears.) In short, I was a yuppie, happily thriving in the world created by colonization.  

I always had a bit of a "radical" edge, I suppose. Once, while I was at a business luncheon, in my fancy, $900, Donna Karn suit, a glass of champagne was sent to me with a note, "from one closet punk to another." I looked around the room at all the other suits and  knew who sent that drink. A moment of subversive solidarity. Still, I was pursuing "The American Dream" until I went to business school. There, when faced with the founding principles of capitalism, I wholly rejected them. Everything was cold and with zero concern for a just and sustainable existence for all people. War terminology applied to business practices. I could not adopt that. I had gone to school to "boost my resumé" and, presumably, my career. I ended up turning down offers to join venture capital firms. I would go on to run the first urban composting company in the United States, a very mission-oriented pursuit. Everything I have done since then has been mission-oriented.

Still, I didn't have the words for how I perceived things. I no longer felt good about the concept of "competition". Competitions have winners and losers. A society built on "competitive spirit" requires losers. Far more losers than winners. Only one person claims the title at the end of a tennis tournament. Everyone else is some varying degree of loser. It rankles me to no end that someone who is second best in the world at what they do is "suffering a disappointing loss" at The Olympics when they receive their silver medal. Moreover, I feel great pain about the history of our culture. It's a living history. Here in the United States, we have committed and continue to commit genocide against The First Peoples. The early settlers came here for economic opportunity and they generated their successes by dragging millions from their homelands and enslaving them to get free labor and greater profits for themselves. Every single aspect of what this country is would not exist without slavery and genocide. Yet, we continue to call this "exceptional" and we continue to state that the lifestyle we have become accustomed to is a good and normal thing that we should continue to aspire to and convince, well force, everyone else in the world to aspire to.

I could articulate my perceptions, but I didn't have a name for it until I entered the world of Occupy and encountered an already existing movement called "Decolonize". (Though I can't attend often due to a scheduling conflict, I am eternally grateful for the Decolonize to Liberate working group at Occupy Boston.)

Decolonize. That word seems to scare people. Almost every time I utter it in front of people, there is someone who will ask, "do you expect everyone to leave here and go to Europe?"

The political act of decolonizing is not about rearranging where everyone lives. Even if you did that, people would still have a mindset, an ethical compass, which would lead to new colonizing and new systems of oppression. Decolonizing is about rearranging the way we think and how we treat each other. What does "justice for all" really mean? Have the vast majority of people living on this land experienced justice?

We know the answer to that question. Injustice has plagued this land. "Freeing" slaves whilst keeping the rewards of their labor was not justice. Giving native peoples barely survivable land land that you claim they have sovereignty over, which you do not honor, is not justice. Breaching every treaty we ever made with those same people is certainly not justice.

Those are obvious examples of injustices and we do hear lip service given, culturally, to these "historical" events. (We're breaching treaties to this day and the 13th Amendment has an exemption to the banning of slavery, which we are taking full advantage of in our private prison system. So, this is not just history. It's contemporary.) What we don't discuss much or in a way which might actually lead to justice, is how the very tenets of "The American Way", the very things we honor as almost sacred truths, generated and continue to generate these injustices. We're like the child who says, "Sorry for leaving my trash on the floor, mom", but doesn't pick up the trash and continues to leave trash on the floor. It's a superficial acknowledgement of wrongdoing without any righting of the situation or commitment to prevention of further harm.

With our very ways of being, we cause harm and promote injustice every day. We cheer on the "winning" little league team without a concern for what the message of "life has winners and losers" implants in our children. We buy cheap food without making sure no one was abused to get it to us. We wear clothing made in sweat shops. We let children "cry it out" and put them in "time out" to show them they will be ostracized when they don't 'behave', where 'behaving' means adopting the feelings and perceptions of an authority figure. We hug our children when they "make us proud" or "look so cute" or entertain us. Every aspect of our beings is shaped through a system of reward and deprive. And we're willing deprive people of food, shelter, clothing and healthcare if they haven't 'behaved'. We are willing, in other words, to kill them. We kill people all the time. Our president now has a "kill list". I don't believe for a moment that we're killing people as revenge for those killed in 2001. We're killing anyone who dares to threaten the public perception that we are exceptional and democratic and harbingers of peace. We have the most weapons and an exponentially larger army than anyone on the planet has ever had and we dare to claim we are bringing peace. We are exceptional, yes. Exceptional at cognitive disconnect and self-deception in the name of glorifying ourselves and getting what we want, regardless of who pays what price.

But, it's also micro. When we're in a meeting and someone expresses a feeling about something and the first response is a rebuttal, we're participating in the devaluing of someone. We tell them "don't feel that. Don't see that." We do it to each other all the time. We compete over feelings. We compete over ideas. We normalize the concept that he who speaks with the most force gets to be 'right' and everyone else is silenced or ostracized. We see no room for simultaneous co-existence of multiple ideas, emotions and peoples. It happens in the workplace, in political dialogue, in families and even in the most intimate of relations. From the most subtle of interactions to the most tense, its all about who is best at dominating. We give up our agency in micro-moments everyday and hand our power to those who are most comfortable dominating.

Domination is the name of the game. It's our "Manifest Destiny".  Our nationalism and self-proclaimed exceptionalism and sense that it is all part of a divine plan within which we are the chosen people, are all part of that 'destiny' and the Doctrine of Discovery. Most of us have probably never used those words. It's not something we discuss often. We don't have to. It's the inherent axiom we embody. And it's the sine qua non. We can't generate a truly just and sustainable world until we purge ourselves of it.

That purge is supremely challenging. We must find a way to question every thing we do, the way we are in every moment, every assumption we have about what is 'natural' and 'right' and 'acceptable'. We must do this without so destroying our own dignity that we either can't bear to live or can't bear to look or need to attack the dignity of others in order to feel better. Of any revolutionary movement out there, the resistance to this will be the strongest because we are rising up against ourselves.

I would argue that we are not rising up against our true selves, though. We are rising up against the selves we have been molded to become. From the moment we were born we were trained and brainwashed and 'normalized'. A particular lens was fused to our eyes through which we are forced to perceive the world. Underneath all that is an original self, who can still look at the world in our innately natural way if we can remove those lenses. There isn't a nice laser-surgery process to remove them in a few moments with some anesthesia to ease the way. It's going to be painful. Yet, it will be freeing. We will be freed of the burden of supporting, and being weighed down by, the systems of oppression we're existing in. And the connections we make to each other will be far more rewarding and joyous, as they are free of the guilt of achieving those connections at the expense of others. It will be liberating because we will not be forced to eradicate our true selves in order to survive.

I am trying to decolonize myself, my own mind. By doing so, I am creating space for something else. Cooperation. Collective. Interdependence. Exquisite joy.

In that vein, here are some of the ways I have challenged myself:

1) be willing to be wrong in every moment.
2) don't allow someone to convince me I am wrong. If I don't feel it, don't just 'cave'.
2) offer any power I have to those who have less
3) be willing to be threatened and to risk safety for the sake of justice.
4) always speak my truth with compassion, even if it creates tension with those I care about.
5) be willing to be uncomfortable in 'mainstream' society; reject coersion
6) be willing to share any material gains I may have

The list will grow, but those are a starting point.

Have you ever considered decolonization? What does it bring up for you? How do you challenge yourself?

Some links for your reading pleasure:
United Nations Declaration on the rights of inDigenous PeoPles

What UNDRIP can mean for the future  

Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues: Statement on the Doctrine of Discovery  

Colonization of the Mind: Normalize This!  

Colonizing and Decolonizing Minds by Marcelo Dascal, Tel Aviv University    

Originally posted to Anti-Capitalist Meetup on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 03:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by Anti-Capitalist Chat and Community Spotlight.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  We all talk about our progressive politics, but (18+ / 0-)

    rarely live them.  We act as if those changes will happen naturally after the revolution.  Fact is, it isn't only our ideas that make change, but our daily actions.  I love how OWS makes this the primariy goal of the movement.  To create real solidardity.

    Thank you, Una for reminding us of this.  I have two additional comments:

    The first is that last night I was at Woody Guthriue's Birthday bash and of course we sang "This land is your land."  This is also an OWS song.  Fact is, that even in this song we are already practicing white European privilege.  The land and the people on it started long before there was a California or New York Island.  Wonder what American Indians think of this song?  I actually used to use it to teach manifest destiny what did it mean? who did it speak to? Still love the song, but just saying we have to look at everything with an inclusive lens.

    Second comment.  Learn to respect the work of all people, not just the doctors and lawyers.  If it weren't for the folks who farm, weave, sew, make iron, etc all the doctors and lawyers would be standing around naked -- that is if they survived without clothes, shelter and food.
    We really have to take a look at all the valuable labor in our society and respect it, not just because we can make more money from it.

    •  One of our most pressing issues it that it (5+ / 0-)

      takes very little labor, and less all the time, to produce a unit of food, clothing or shelter.  Equipment technicians are handy  for the time being but automation is merciless if productivity is the only metric.

      Where are we, now that we need us most?

      by Frank Knarf on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 03:42:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Technology always changes, but there is still (8+ / 0-)

        plenty of grunt work in new forms --putting semi-conductors in computers, workking on your feet at a fast food restaurant, childcare centers to raise children take a great deal of very sensitive (and currently) under paid work.  We are all so used to looking at the upwardly mobeile (read capitalist competition)jobs that wse forget there is a great deal of basic necessary labor.  And what about those tapes on your phone (press1,2,3,...22).  While the company may be saving money by using the computer instead of a person, computers can't yet think and we all waste hours of useless time answering those prompts.  Wouldn't a person who could answer your question in 1 minute be more effective?  Again, we don't see the real value of much labor that we do and think we can replace it with a machine.  TV as babysitter is but one example.

        •  Lifetime achievement ceremony honoring Mr. Rogers (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          shaharazade, zedaker

          I'll never forget how the speakers yielded the floor to a 19-year old African-American and former latchkey child who simply and eloquently raised his arm in Mr. Rogers' direction and said, "There is the man who taught me how to tie my shoes."

          TV as babysitter is but one example.

          The Dutch kids' chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen wishes all the world's children freedom from hunger, ignorance, and war.

          by lotlizard on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 01:54:15 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  In Capitalism, Automation Increases Exploitation. (9+ / 0-)

        Workers in American auto factories found that the misery of their labor on the production line only increased with the introduction of more and more automation. Automation required fewer workers, so many lost their ability to make an adequate wage, while the remaining workers were forced to work faster and faster to keep up with the speed of the assembly line.

        The irony for the capitalists who introduce the automation is that that although they can produce many more widgets, those widgets, which contain less and less human labor time, also reduce the exchange value of the products themselves, so their profits tend to decline as their automation increases.

        Because the automated technology has a fixed cost and cannot, like human labor, be forced to work beyond their fixed machine life, ultimately automation does not reduce the capitalists fixed costs.  Only human labor creates value and can be forced to work over-time.

        The need to keep profits rising encourages such companies to move their production facilities to countries where wages are cheaper than in the U.S., in order to shore up their profits.  

        But the problem is that that they still have to sell their mass of products to more and more consumers.  If U.S. workers don't have jobs and if foreign workers make a pittance, then neither has the money to buy the products, and profits once again tend to decline.

        As a result, our financial capitalists, who are sitting on the massive amounts of stolen labor from prior production, have resorted to selling each other fictitious financial products, which don't themselves produce any new valuable assets.

        There "derivatives" are pieces of worthless paper, backed-up by rows of digital zeros and 1s. They fudge their financial figures in order to convince the "markets" that they actually have valuable assets behind them, when all they have in reality is smoke and mirrors.  

        Capitalism cannot sustain itself, let alone sustain human communities.  Time to build an economic system that actually meets the needs of the majority of people and their communities.

        Convict Bush, Cheney and their torture cabal. Support universal health care,unions, WikiLeaks and Occupy Wall Street! Time for a totally new, democratic economic system. Turn the corporations into worker cooperatives!

        by Justina on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 04:38:16 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I see this argued again and again, (10+ / 0-)

          Capitalism has cycles and we are in a down cycle. The argument is that it will recover, because it has recovered every other time. What is new in today's system is that the cause of the down turn is that capitalism met a wall it can not climb around--the world is not infinite.

          Capitalism works only if you have essentially infinite man power and infinite resources to exploit. We are reaching the finite wall of how much of both we can exploit and the old rules of capitalism are about to break down under those conditions. Capitalism may not recover as it has in the past--it might not be able to scale this obstacle. Yes, it is time to pick another system.

          De air is de air. What can be done?

          by TPau on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 04:47:23 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Absolutely true, but it can be much bettter in a (5+ / 0-)

          cooperative economy, even under capitalism (Mondragon, Evergreen, etc.0 Doesn't solve problem but it let's us begin to envision what it could be like if we could live in another system.

    •  This! (12+ / 0-)
      Learn to respect the work of all people, not just the doctors and lawyers.  If it weren't for the folks who farm, weave, sew, make iron, etc all the doctors and lawyers would be standing around naked -- that is if they survived without clothes, shelter and food.
      We really have to take a look at all the valuable labor in our society and respect it, not just because we can make more money from it.
      I've been expressing this sentiment for a while, especially since the conventional dialog has exalted CEOs, doctors, lawyers, etc. That we pay such abhorrently low wages to the people who really keep things running--janitors, food workers, landscapers, and so on--is one of my soapbox issues. There are some things we can't outsource, and you can bet that CEO would be mightily upset if the janitor wasn't there to take out his trash and vacuum his floor.

       

      "The American people are so used to being told they have freedom and democracy that they've forgotten to check to see if it's still true.." -Commenter on Facebook

      by Arenosa on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 06:14:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think highest value should be placed on the job (7+ / 0-)

      that the least of us are willing to do, but is necessary for our community to function.

      So, the janitor and the sewage workers should be at the high end of the scale.

    •  You used it to teach Manifest Destiny? (0+ / 0-)

      How'd you manage that? The whole point of the song is that "this land" actually belongs to the great mass of people who collectively populate it. I'm pretty sure that Woody intended that to include the earliest inhabitants. This perspective certainly wasn't any part of "Manifest Destiny" which was predicated on the belief that certain populations had the right to dispossess others.

      Nothing human is alien to me.

      by WB Reeves on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 12:35:28 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Do you ever ponder the irony of your existence (3+ / 0-)

    as a free-thinking radical in the Belly of the Beast?  What is it about liberal western modernity that has provided the literal and metaphorical space for you to project these ideas?  How did the global network you are using here come to be?

    Where are we, now that we need us most?

    by Frank Knarf on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 03:24:04 PM PDT

  •  We are broadening our reach: (5+ / 0-)

    Check us out on:
    The Stars Hollow Gazette

    Docudharma

    My Fire Dog Lake

    We are also now on Facebook and Twitter.

    Join our group at Facebook and get notifications from us about posts and other important news and events.

    De air is de air. What can be done?

    by TPau on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 03:26:32 PM PDT

  •  I find this problematic. (11+ / 0-)
    We are rising up against the selves we have been molded to become. From the moment we were born we were trained and brainwashed and 'normalized'. A particular lens was fused to our eyes through which we are forced to perceive the world. Underneath all that is an original self, who can still look at the world in our innately natural way if we can remove those lenses.
    Even if there is some "essential self" that exists beneath our rhetorically-based understandings of who we are and the context in which we exist, then it is absolutely unknowable, because it could be described and understood, even within ourselves, only through our own use of rhetoric—at which point it becomes simply another rhetorically-based understanding of who we are and the context in which we exist.

    Culture, language, and rhetoric are not trappings we add to some kind of innate and "original self," things that can be stripped away to get at the "real" underneath; rather, they are the only ways we have in which we can understand ourselves, and the only ways by which we can make sense of the real.

    To dismiss those things as "brainwashing" and "normalization," in the context of this piece, is to imply that they are somehow uniquely the products of capitalism. They are not. Every single human being that has grown up in any culture, everywhere, for the tens of thousands of years that our species has had language, has undergone that same process—because we do not, and cannot, understand the world around us without it.

    "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

    by JamesGG on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 03:29:29 PM PDT

    •  Critical reflection (8+ / 0-)

      can lead to some very uncomfortable conclusions. For example, when it extends to understanding how the air conditioning which makes our own life bearable also kills swathes of the ecosystem, we tend to justify it or deny it.
      Up until the recent past, and by that I mean the 1600s on, the predatory, selfish nature of our species didn't matter in terms of the Earth in general, though it has and continues to cause wars, genocide, and general misery for those humans considered "losers". At this point though, human competition really has become a zero sum game. We have been brought up to understand societal winners and losers through our history classes, while discounting environmental context. If we continue to do so, we all lose in the end.

      "There's a crack in everything; that's how the light gets in". Leonard Cohen

      by northsylvania on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 03:56:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  An interesting conundrum to your position - we (4+ / 0-)

      actually live in two envirnoments (although they increasingly overlap)--the market economy and the "private" nonmarket economy.  Granted the non market economy is shrinking and higly determined by the market economy--but there are still sme aspects of being a parent where we have feelings and relations with our children that are not solely based commodity values.  Perhaps that is why women and children may be the Trojan Horse in this system.

    •  Capitalism Molds The Competitive Mindset. (8+ / 0-)

      UnaSpenser describes this very well.  In cooperative communities, the values which are promoted are those which benefit the majority of the community which means the improvement in the lives of each of its members.  People are encouraged to work together cooperatively to meet democratically arrived at social goals.

      Under capitalism, individuals are in constant competition against one-another to "win" a few coveted places, he or she who gets the most money is awarded the prestige and respect, while in cooperative communities, those whose work or actions help the entire community gain the most respect.

      Yes, all children are enculturated to the values of their communities, but there are vast differences in the values of capitalism and those of socialism.  

      We have seen where the values of capitalism leads -- to corruption and cruel exploitation of the majority.  

      It is past time to establish communities in which improvement in the lives of human beings, not enlargement of a few individuals' bank accounts, are the dominant values.

      Convict Bush, Cheney and their torture cabal. Support universal health care,unions, WikiLeaks and Occupy Wall Street! Time for a totally new, democratic economic system. Turn the corporations into worker cooperatives!

      by Justina on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 04:17:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Can you name a successful (0+ / 0-)

        "cooperative society"?  Point me to one that still exists.. and it must be large-scale, an entire country.

        The theoretical utopian nature of these "cooperative societies" are inevitably brought forth in these discussions.. like clockwork. But, all of the experiments in "cooperative society" have failed miserably - because they do not take into consideration human nature.  Humans are competitive by nature.

        There is nothing intrinsically wrong with capitalism.  However, the practice of it in the 21st century (and late 20th century) has corrupted it to benefit only those at the top of the financial end.

        We had the perfect opportunity to practice free market capitalism in 2008.  The financiers and bankers made bets on crappy investments - insubstantial equities that were not worth the paper they were written on.  But, did we let them fail?

        Hell no!  The whole financial system should have crashed, and should have left the practitioners of finance and banking penniless - and many should have been prosecuted criminally as well.

        We bailed them out instead!  Capitalism does require losers.. but it is no longer capitalism if we don't allow bad decisions to lead to failure.

        •  If humans are "competitive by nature" (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Justina, zedaker

          why doesn't the entirety of human history bear that out? Up until roughly 300 years ago, the idea of a competitive society had little to do with the way human cultures and civilizations were structured. To the contrary, human societies were organized on the assumption of stable hierarchies in which there was a place for everyone and everyone was expected to remain in their place.

          Yes, there were always exceptions to the general rule but they were the exceptions that proved the rule.

             

          Nothing human is alien to me.

          by WB Reeves on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 12:56:22 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  mobility, for one. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            WB Reeves

            All but the last 150 years of humanity existed with almost zero mobility.  You were stuck in the life you were born into.

            The Industrial age and faster/cheaper ocean travel finally allowed a poor person in Europe, for instance, to save up enough to travel half-way round the world in a relatively short time.

            To the contrary, human societies were organized on the assumption of stable hierarchies in which there was a place for everyone and everyone was expected to remain in their place.
            They may not have been competitive, but they were not co-operative in the least.  The "haves" had laws passed to make sure the "have nots" were kept in their place.  Even the settling of North America was only accomplished because of forced labor in the form of indentured servitude.

            However, once free from their indenture, these colonist became very competitive, as labor was in high demand.

            •  But you really haven't answered the question. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              zedaker

              You cite circumstances as having precluded the expression of what you described as "human Nature." Human nature is by definition a universal human trait. If you claim that basic, innate characteristics can be negated by circumstance, then saying that "you can't change human nature." is clearly false. It's worthless as argument for or against anything.

              I'm glad that you recognize that competitive societies are a recent phenomenon. So ask yourself this question: If we are an innately competitive species; self interested, driven to demonstrate our own superiority, amassing material wealth and power, how is it that the great mass of humans allowed themselves to be eclipsed for so long?

                 

              Nothing human is alien to me.

              by WB Reeves on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 02:53:09 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Competition took on different manifestations (0+ / 0-)

                before man was freed to compete in free trade (of goods and his/her own labor).

                Of course there was competition before that!  History is one long chain of competition in the form of war and conquest.

                I never said:

                I'm glad that you recognize that competitive societies are a recent phenomenon.
                Personal ability to compete was stifled by societal structures.  

                Primitive man competed for leadership of the clan and the right to mate.  As man progressed from hunter gatherers to farmers, their was fierce competition between the groups... resulting in massacres of entire villages.

                European history from that point on is one war of conquest after another..  fortresses of wooden pikes became stone walled towns and castles.

                Where did you ever come up with the idea that man was not competitive?

                What you have failed to show is any long-lasting cooperative societies.  There are none.  There may have been societies that had complementary skills performed by members of the society.  But no where in history can you show me a successful society where the majority of members subjugated their wants and needs to that of the society...  and by successful I mean a society that lasted and thrived. No where.

                •  I thought you were talking about individual (0+ / 0-)

                  competitiveness? That's certainly not what you're talking about now.

                  Of course there was competition before that!  History is one long chain of competition in the form of war and conquest.
                  Except, of course, war isn't an example of individual competitiveness. War is a collective endeavor and therefore an essentially cooperative effort.
                  Primitive man competed for leadership of the clan and the right to mate.
                  Really? What's your source for that?
                  As man progressed from hunter gatherers to farmers, their was fierce competition between the groups... resulting in massacres of entire villages.
                  Again "groups" are collective, not individual. Group competitiveness is not same as individual competitiveness. Groups require cooperation.

                  Your attempt to equate individual competitiveness with collective competitiveness is self-defeating. Collective action is only possible when individual competition takes a backseat to cooperation. In war, such cooperation can demand the ultimate sacrifice of the individual. Hardly a proof of the individual human's competitive nature. If anything,  it indicates that the cooperative trait can sometimes trump the urge for self preservation.

                  As for cooperative societies, that's redundant. All societies, including our own, are fundamentally cooperative. When people cease to cooperate, societies crumble.

                  It seems to me that you're conflating competition with aggression. In which case the only substantive question is how much aggression a given society is willing or able to tolerate.  

                  Nothing human is alien to me.

                  by WB Reeves on Tue Jul 17, 2012 at 03:39:05 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  early communal societies (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  WB Reeves

                  were based on group marriages, not on male competition for the right to mate.

                  Primitive man competed for leadership of the clan and the right to mate.  As man progressed from hunter gatherers to farmers, their was fierce competition between the groups... resulting in massacres of entire villages.
                  in prehistoric societies it was the women who chose the leaders of the clans. the earliest societies were matriarchal. farming led to slavery which did destroy earlier communal societies. we still live with the latest version of slavery: wage-slavery.
                  What you have failed to show is any long-lasting cooperative societies.  
                  Cooperative societies existed for thousands of years before farming began. Check any anthropology textbook.
                  There may have been societies that had complementary skills performed by members of the society.  But no where in history can you show me a successful society where the majority of members subjugated their wants and needs to that of the society...
                  Societies in which people use complementary skills to help each other....this is the same thing as saying a society where the majority help each other.
            •  you need to check up on basic economic theory... (0+ / 0-)

              when labor is in high demand there is less competition among workers. as when there is high demand for apples farmers have less reason to compete. When there is lack of effective demand there is a crisis and the Keyensians have to step in.

              What happened in the colonies was that once freed the colonists could start their own farms and became independent farmers. of course,  they also decided to use that most basic form of economy: slavery...and, as we know, in the south, slavery was defended at the cost of hundreds of thousands of lives as a god given property right. After all, it was just competition: the slaves were just losers in the game of competition.

    •  each of us is part nature, part nurture. (3+ / 0-)

      The nurture, or acculturation, is like a suit of armor.

      It may take work prying it off, but you can decide to strip down to your natural self and then don a new suit.

      •  You say that as if it's easy to distinguish... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        zedaker

        ...between nature and nurture, such that the self is essentially bifurcated—one part that is the natural self, the other that is the product of culture.

        And yet, even if that is the case—and I don't think it's anywhere remotely near that simple—it is still impossible to describe, or even meaningfully understand, the "nature" part without some use of the very tools that create the "nurture" part.

        Language is the first tool of acculturation; to offer up a description of the "natural self" is to indelibly and inexorably link it somehow to some form of cultural expression. And self-talk is no less linguistic than is our talk to others.

        In short: I don't think there is such a thing as the "natural self" apart from culture, and there is no such thing as a human being who is not acculturated.

        Even if you think you're stripping down to your "natural self"—and I won't even begin to discuss the rather shallow view of rhetoric displayed by the notion of culture as "clothing" one puts on or takes off—you're really not. You're just on some level attempting to alter your cultural programming, and in doing so using the tools of culture—and, thus, reculturating rather than deculturating.

        "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

        by JamesGG on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 08:52:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I tend to agree (0+ / 0-)

          but I have personal experience that renders a more ambiguous judgment. I have very clear memories of early childhood extending back to my third birthday. Consequently, I recall the process of acculturation as it unfolded for me and the conflicts that I had with it. Conflicts that produced active resistance on my part, almost from the beginning.

          Now I don't say that this proves the prior existence of a "natural self", whatever so amorphous a phrase might be taken to mean. However, I do think it calls into question traditional conceptions of the human infant as a Tabula Rasa on which we may write whatever we please.    

          Nothing human is alien to me.

          by WB Reeves on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 01:15:52 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I don't grasp how absorbing fatuous Palestinian (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Geminijen, FG, Jerry J, varro

    propaganda is going to help me dredge up my true self.

    Where are we, now that we need us most?

    by Frank Knarf on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 03:52:14 PM PDT

  •  Colonization is Part and Parcel of Capitalism. (7+ / 0-)

    The motive force of capitalism is reducing the costs of materials (by colonizing foreign lands) while at the same time keeping the wages of the workers as low as possible in order to generate greater and greater profits for the owners of the capital.

    In the very process of the production of the commodity, the worker's productive hours are stolen to become the "profits"of the factory owner.  The worker is paid the bare minimum necessary to keep him working, while the majority of hours in his or her working day are stolen.

    Thus we have exploitation of the worker  and the alienation of the worker from control over his product at the very heart of capitalist production.

    This exploitation of labor (and the competition of workers against each other for the means to survive) is the same exploitation which extends to every aspect of our capitalist economy and its culture.  

    In order to stop the colonization of countries and the minds of everyone in the capitalist milieu, it is necessary to end the production of goods based on stolen labor.

    We need to create a cooperative economic system which is controlled by its workers to meet their own needs and those of the community at large.  

    UnaSpenser expresses very well the alienation of a worker high up on the capitalist food chain, but that alienation has its origin in the very process of capitalist production itself.

    In a society where every worker participates in the democratic control of his/her labor, and where the community as a whole participates in the decisions about what is needed and wanted, the competitive, exploitative force of capitalism would cease to exist. There would no longer be a need for captive media to mold the needs and wants of the population.

    There would no longer be the push to invade foreign countries for oil or its historical equivalent, to generate profits.

    "From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs" would enable the creation of human communities which strive to improve the lives of its members, not generate un-needed profits for the chosen few.  

    So, we need to abolish capitalism itself in order to free each individual from its competitive, non-cooperative mind-set.

    Convict Bush, Cheney and their torture cabal. Support universal health care,unions, WikiLeaks and Occupy Wall Street! Time for a totally new, democratic economic system. Turn the corporations into worker cooperatives!

    by Justina on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 03:56:58 PM PDT

    •  The question remains: (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bigjacbigjacbigjac

      How can you ensure each acts according to his/her abilities?

      •  This is a nonproblem. (7+ / 0-)

        Although much touted by the Ayn Rand set, it's been demonstrated time and again that greed (desire for more resources/food/goodies than an individual actually needs) is a relatively minor motivator.  In fact, early capitalists had to first reduce the majority of the subservient populace to borderline starvation by theft of communal property and tenancies (the Enclosures) in order to motivate them to work for wages, and then periodically to increase costs of survival and socially-mandated "necessities" in order to keep them from reducing hours and effort on the job in favor of more family time and personal interests.

        Most people really couldn't care less about making more money than they actually need.  What will motivate them, apart from sheer survival, is personal interest/satisfaction in the job for its own sake (creativity, self-expression and actualization) and an emotional commitment to the social group.  However, if you're talking about motivating people to run themselves ragged with stress to "excel" and sleep deprivation for decades, you're absolutely right: nothing less than a frank coercive threat to survival such as implicit in the capitalist management of most lower-to-middling workers will drive human beings to "produce" at this level.   You will have to ask yourself if maintaining "acting according to one's abilities" by brutal domination is your goal.

        •  ridiculous (0+ / 0-)

          Where do you come up with such claptrap?

          early capitalists had to first reduce the majority of the subservient populace to borderline starvation by theft of communal property and tenancies (the Enclosures) in order to motivate them to work for wages, and then periodically to increase costs of survival and socially-mandated "necessities" in order to keep them from reducing hours and effort on the job in favor of more family time and personal interests.
          I see.. that's why Europeans that were happy as clams doing farming without any bosses came by the tens of millions to America in the late 1800's and early 1900's to work in the factories?
          Most people really couldn't care less about making more money than they actually need.  What will motivate them, apart from sheer survival, is personal interest/satisfaction in the job for its own sake
          Like I said.. where the heck do you come up with this stuff?
      •  how can you ensure this? (0+ / 0-)

        If you don't work you don't eat. As in Mitt Romney does not eat if he does not work; and stealing is not work.

    •  Um, (0+ / 0-)

      Since capitalist formations first emerged in Italy during the Renaissance, I'm having trouble with the assertion that colonialism is its motive force. Or am I misunderstanding your point?

      Nothing human is alien to me.

      by WB Reeves on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 01:22:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  After watching a newscaster (7+ / 0-)

    heckling a silver medalist for losing, somewhere around 2002, it was pretty obvious that the whole system of metrics in the US was rotten.
    Good diary, but prepare to put up with a lot of flack for thinking cooperatively rather than competitively.

    "There's a crack in everything; that's how the light gets in". Leonard Cohen

    by northsylvania on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 04:06:05 PM PDT

  •  I can't say (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Justina, TPau

    I agree with much of what you said, but I found it very thought provoking.

  •  Colonization is such a loaded term we should (8+ / 0-)

    avoid it IMHO.

    I prefer to think in terms of de-comodifcation.

    Comodifcation of everything demeans everything and has become the ultimate means of control and domination.

     

    "We don't need someone who can think. We need someone with enough digits to hold a pen." ~ Grover Norquist

    by Lefty Coaster on Sun Jul 15, 2012 at 04:44:41 PM PDT

  •  Free your mind, instead...., (4+ / 0-)

    as written by noted bourgeois artist, John Lennon. I doubt if Wall Street really cares whether you de-colonize your or anyone else's mind. What they really care about is whether you intend to de-colonize their offshore bank accounts. This is why Occupy Wall Street never got anywhere near a federal reserve bank.

    •  Or as George Clinton put it (0+ / 0-)

      Free your ass and your mind will follow. You must give up the funk.
      Ain't nothin but a party.

      The good revolution will be a party and the offshore bank accounts just aren't invited.

      If you want to decolonize your mind you can do slow stuff like reading Edward Said and Peter Kropotkin or you can go straight to living the stuff that can't be commodified (though they try): sex, ecstatic dance, music, art, fellowship.

  •  Well done! (6+ / 0-)

    I'm sorry its not more in depth due to Sunday being kid and family day - but loved this essay.

  •  Rec'd for discussion and quality. (8+ / 0-)

    I have a different worldview myself but this was masterfully written.

  •  Excellent diary (7+ / 0-)

    Thank you.

    Decolonize the mind. Yes. It's almost a Zen Buddhist thing. Strip away all debris until you have nothing left but the real self, and then you go even deeper until there is no self, either. It's just all one. One big family, planet, universe, united, undifferentiated.

    So, no reason for discrimination. No reason to hate. No reason to fight or compete.

    I've taken the last twenty years or so to shed political debris (decolonize, in a way), moving from an apolitical liberal, to a left-liberal, and onto ecosocialism. For me, the Green Left unites what is most important: social justice, civil rights, human rights, equality for all, and a green, sustainable way of life. They go the furthest, IMO, to decolonize the mind and the planet.

    Fusing Zen with Ecosocialism rounds the circle for me. The center is nowhere and everywhere. The circumference nowhere and everywhere.

    Best of luck with your journey.

  •  Una, a great start and an important premise (6+ / 0-)

    from someone who works with postcolonial and protest literature, the patterns simply repeat.

    Tipped & Rec'd fondly, as always (you're a great diarist).

  •  I think there's too much conflation (5+ / 0-)

    of disparate concepts trying to create a coherent theory where none exists. "Survival of the fittest" was not invented to be a capitalist meme but to describe an observation that supports the Theory of Evolution. Excellence happens. We should not be afraid of recognizing it. Avoiding its recognition is the essence of disrespect, and I believe that respect is the key to successful collaboration. Sometimes those who are less knowledgeable need to respect the opinions of those who are more knowledgeable. Sometimes those who are less able need to respect and allow those who are more able to perform the job. Those who are more able or more intelligent, in return, need to respect that the other people are still being useful and legitimate members of society. Respect means acknowledging differences not ignoring them or pretending they don't exist, which is what the diary seems to be suggesting. I realize that the mere recognition of differences between people can lead to different valuations and devaluations of on person versus another or one group or collection of people over another group or collection of people, but the solution is to work harder to teach individuals the principles of self-examination, cognizance, and selflessness than to try to cover-up real differences with another form of brainwashing. While we can assert the legal fiction that all people are created equal, the physical truth is that people are different. An attempt to ignore our differences is to whitewash the very diversity that makes humanity successful.

    Human endeavor is generally measured according to two metrics in political science: effectiveness and legitimacy. If the mindset promoted by the were to be established, it does not appear that it would increase effectiveness or legitimacy, but that's a guess until real laws and regulations are proposed and perhaps put into place. What I can surmise is that allowing less than optimal job performance or referendum results would generate a less effective result. Moreover, it's not clear how legitimacy may be enhanced in the political system by a change in the economic system as proposed, but perhaps that can be clarified.

    Some other notes:
    I think the historical references are not only flawed but work against the intent of the argument for change. I've looked into the genocide claims of Native Americans and have found little evidence. The British officer Amherst, in pre-US North America, suggested the use of biological warfare, but there's not evidence it was attempted or was successful. Other claims seem to have even less evidence. But even if they were true, we can't undo history. There are more motivations for the misdeeds of humanity that capitalism. Besides, it was Mercantilism that caused colonialism, not Capitalism. If you think socialism, the government driving commerce is good then remember that Mercantilism was also a government-run form of commerce.

    -We need Healthcare Reform... but i'm selfish, I Need Healthcare reform-

    by JPax on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 12:35:46 AM PDT

    •  "Survival of the fittest" is an ideological (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      WB Reeves, zedaker

      construction. It is not an observation. It is not Darwin. It is not the Theory of Evolution. Not even close.

      The nicest deconstruction and takedown of ideological Darwinism (both rank Social Darwinism and any Darwinism) is by Marilynne Robinson in her book of essays, The Death of Adam.

      •  wikipedia disagrees with you. nt (0+ / 0-)

        -We need Healthcare Reform... but i'm selfish, I Need Healthcare reform-

        by JPax on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 05:27:48 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thank you. Wikipedia as usual is wrong (0+ / 0-)
          •  My friends who are biologists and physicists also (0+ / 0-)

            disagree.

            -We need Healthcare Reform... but i'm selfish, I Need Healthcare reform-

            by JPax on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 11:46:37 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Survival of the fittest versus evolution (0+ / 0-)

              has created a long record in the annals of intellectual history. The essay I noted above is an excellent overview.

              This was a diary about freeing your mind. Evolution as some sort of scientific backing for aggressively nasty capitalism nauseates.

              •  A free mind is still bound by the laws of reality (0+ / 0-)

                You can't undo history. You can't undo nature. Ignoring our history and nature and reality is not the solution. It's a prescription for disaster.

                I agree, evolution should not be used as an explanation and excuse for the evils of capitalism, but evolution can also be used to explain cooperation. However, the diarist refuses to go there and wants to solve the problem by burying heads in sand. Teaching people how to think is harder than teaching people what to think, but I think it's worth the effort. I see the diarist as proposing that we take the easy way out.

                I think JFK said it best: "...do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard..."

                Excellence and ability should be celebrated and rewarded. Our survival depends on it. If you don't believe this then go try living in a wilderness for a while, or try living through a natural disaster.

                I agree we need to put less emphasis on winners and losers, to celebrate excellence without worshiping it. We shouldn't have winners that gloat or sore losers, but we do that by teaching respect and perseverance, not by getting rid of the concept of winning and losing. This is where the diary becomes absurd.

                -We need Healthcare Reform... but i'm selfish, I Need Healthcare reform-

                by JPax on Tue Jul 17, 2012 at 01:17:09 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  That's an interesting and unexpected response. (0+ / 0-)

                  Best I can offer is another reading suggestion. An oldie. And it was a somewhat contemporaneous response to Social Darwinism. Peter Kropotkin's Mutual Aid. The most interesting part of the book is his observations as a naturalist in Siberia, which was then about as remote as the Galapagos.

                  The ideas you're talking about and the ideas the diarist was exploring are pretty much all socially determined. The idea that we escape context is a non-sequitur. Science and math can escape to some extent, concepts as wooly as evolution or the utility of rewards systems do not.

                  •  Thanks, I'll look them up. (0+ / 0-)

                    I agree about context, it's something I was studying a few years ago with a professor who was working on the concepts of Monologism and Dialogism to develop a neo-modernism framework in Communications Theory, but I ended up not continuing to grad-school. Just as well, I might have been killed in the massacre that semester.

                    -We need Healthcare Reform... but i'm selfish, I Need Healthcare reform-

                    by JPax on Tue Jul 17, 2012 at 09:30:12 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

  •  My dear UnaSpencer, (0+ / 0-)

    Here is a link:

    http://www.dailykos.com/...

    I've written several diaries on this theme.

    It seems to me that we,
    humanity in general,
    may soon face severe,
    increasingly severe,
    food shortages,
    starting right now,
    with this year's drought,
    in this country,
    forcing food prices up,
    as China buys much of our grain.

    I don't know the details,I may have it wrong,
    but this is my concern.

    The basic philosophy you state in this diary,
    I believe,
    is sound and correct.

    But hungry folks,
    fighting over scarce food,
    will not find a way
    to follow your advice.

    If,
    on the other hand,
    we have less than one hundred million humans,
    on the whole planet,
    three million in the USA,
    20,000 in the whole state of Kansas,
    5,000 in Wichita,
    in that situation,
    folks can find a way
    to simply put the food and such
    in the hands of those who need it,
    and feel right doing it.

    Thanks for reading.

  •  can we, huh? huh? can we, please? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shaharazade, oldhippie, zedaker

    "do you expect everyone to leave here and go to Europe?"

    "bin Laden's dead, and GM is alive" ~ Biden

    by dkmich on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 02:44:23 AM PDT

  •  competition is a part of being a living being (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    misslegalbeagle, Hatrax

    just as cooperation is also a part of being a human being

    humans need both equally

    everyone can't have and do and be everything that everyone else has and does and is.  

    i direct video games for a living.  there are not enough game director jobs out there for everyone who wants to be a game director.  so, who gets those jobs?  how does that get decided?  i worked hard to be able to do my job and i worked hard to find the opportunity to do my job.  competition.  

    i married my wife.  we were both in relationships with other people before we met each other, but even though some of those people wanted to marry us, we waited to find someone we wanted more.  when we found each other, we chose each other over every other person out there.  competition.

    i am going to buy a home with my wife after she finishes graduate school and settles down into a career.  we will look at many houses.  we will pick one.  one company or person is going to win our business.  all of the work they did will pay off for them.  the other sellers will have to keep looking for someone else to buy.  competition.

    do i have to keep going on and one with examples of competition that you find no fault in whatsoever?  i can go on for days with examples, because life is packed full of them.  

    competition isn't the problem.  the problem is assholes.  people who think life is about winning.  people who think that there's only one winner.  people who lie and cheat and steal.  what we need is for assholes to stop being assholes.  

    it's good to meet people's basic needs, but humans are far far more than their basic needs.  humans need freedom to chart their own course in life.  if you take away competition, then you take away people's ability to choose.  you turn people into slaves.

    but, you know, go ahead, try to mold everyone else into what you want them to be.  tell yourself that you are saving them from having been molded by society.  tell yourself that you have the right to make that choice for them.  then make up a god who gave you that right and you are the religious right.

    so long and thanks for all the fish

    by Anton Bursch on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 02:46:15 AM PDT

    •  tipped and rec'd the diary by the way (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      UnaSpenser

      absolutely wonderful diary, even though i ultimately disagree with you about competition.  

      so long and thanks for all the fish

      by Anton Bursch on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 02:50:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Good point overall (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Anton Bursch

      What I'm not sure of is that:

      "humans need both equally"

      Is that true?  How would we even quantify it?

      I think most of what the species produces well is a cooperative effort.  A good album, highway system, university, etc.  That said, merit based selection is required.  I say that not so much as an argument against affirmative action, but as an argument against a system where advancement correlates primarily to the degree one is willing to become depraved.

      What genre of video games do you work on if you don't mind my asking?  

      •  outdoor racing games ;) (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        BPK

        as for cooperation and competition... my statement about needing both equally was not meant to say that we need an equal amount of both, but that both are just as much of a need for people to make it in this life.  i think they are probably a kind of yin/yang.  

        so long and thanks for all the fish

        by Anton Bursch on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 11:33:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Perhaps we need to flesh out more what I am (0+ / 0-)

      Saying. I am saying that a culture which bases itself on glorifying competition, without concern for how 'winning' impacts others, is an inhumane culture.

      A culture which doesn't equally value doing no harm is destructive and ultimately unsustainable.

      When you and your wife chose each other, did you leave someone destitute, without the ability to continue building a sustainable life? Was it a matter of 'winning'? Were you cheering about having 'beaten' someone?

      Try to hear the real meaning of what I'm saying and not use a semantic case of applying a word differently to reject the thoughts being presented.

      Or help me say it better. Thanks!

      •  like spartans, who practically worshipped power (0+ / 0-)

        there is a group of people in this country who practically worship money

        i think it was that jesus fella who said that people lost their souls worshiping money.  and i don't think he just meant their eternal souls.  he meant that they cause a part of themselves to die inside, because that's what happens when you fall in love with things instead of people.

        that's how i see what you are trying to say about people being molded into lesser beings because of their pursuit of wealth.

        so long and thanks for all the fish

        by Anton Bursch on Tue Jul 17, 2012 at 02:52:25 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Extremely insightful (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shaharazade
  •  who is best at dominating (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    UnaSpenser

    Bingo!  Now go read Rianne Eisler's books.  Domination is the key to the problem and partnership is the solution.

    "The real wealth of a nation consists of the contributions of its people and nature." -- Rianne Eisler

    by noofsh on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 10:20:10 AM PDT

  •  To free the mind of colonization... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WB Reeves

    it would first be necessary to free society of colonization. How is this society colonized, what is the actual reality of social colonization? I think we need to describe and analyze the actual conditions of social control, social exploitation, social slavery. I don't think colonization can exist without social domination, and this means there are specific persons, a specific class of persons which dominates and a specific class which is dominated.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site