Times are tough for agitators. Have you been to New Orleans' French Quarter on Friday nights? I've been there a few times (years ago) and remember seeing this old guy walking around with an elaborate protest sign with lights on it, and yelling to the top of his lungs something about Jesus and the end of times. Throngs of people (thousands and thousands) walk by without even noticing him.
I've seen those guys at other places too, like at Powell and Market in San Francisco; end-of-days fanatics.
That's how today's agitators, which are probably one of the first line of defense against the imposition of tyranny and oppression, must feel by witnessing the reaction (or lack thereof) of a totally apathetic citizenry in the face of the most relentless and blatant reigns of debauchery, corruption and impunity in this nation's history.
I know I've been at it for almost 15 years now, trying to alert people about how the criminal collusion between corporations and government (one and the same) are using the media and fear to strip away our rights so we can be exploited.
It's all there in front of your eyes, and it is fascistic in nature, and it's rapidly getting worst. And here I am with my lighted sign, like an end-of-days Jesus fanatic, while the masses walk by. And I'm just a minor player (very tiny, insignificant). There are others, with way more influence, like Matt Taibbi, Bill Moyers, Noam Chomski, Christopher Hedges, Naomi Klein, Jeremy Scahil, Stephen Colbert, Jon Stewart, and many others.
In the face of this rapidly-accelerating imposition of outright fascistic corporate control over our lives, there is either widespread apathy, or ineffective engagement.
Here's my yelling of crazy stuff... You guys are doing it all wrong! Occupy Wall Street should have been just the beginning of the resistance; it should have been 20 times bigger and more relentless by now. But tactics should have changed.
The other side is doing their thing in a very methodical, strategic, extremely well-planned manner. They get the corrupt politicians to destroy the regulatory framework; then they get more power, and then they use it to take over the country one city at a time with a very straightforward and powerful approach: destroy government functions (and hence, democracy), and replace with a privatize Corporatocracy.
So, logically, in order to resist these fascist pigs, the other side (the people), has to take a similar approach: Become highly organized, strategic, united, with short-, mid-, and long-term goals.
The minute someone suggests something like that, people run a panic, making allusions to dangerous militancy, etc. WTF! Unbelievable!
These rallies, these civil disobedience tactics, the showing up at city council meeting in Alameda (CA) to express your disapproval to the Drones wanted to be deployed by the Sheriff. Hello! People, it's not going to work. Nobody is listening. The city council (in the great majorities of the cities) is on the take. Your civil disobedience arrest is only going to fuck you over by sullying your record.
The constant obsessive compulsion to write every goddamned travesty being done to us by this rising corporate fascist state in the hopes that by showing how dastardly those acts are it would shock the public into doing something, is useless. Doing what? Voting for Barack Obama? Having over 1.5 millions votes for Democrats in Congress over the Republicans, and still get these goddamned fascists keep control of the House?
Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe.
- Frederick Douglas
People, the system is rigged. Nobody is listening. We are on our own. The City Councils don't give a shit; the governors don't give a shit; the national government, as a whole is in the hands of a brutal corporate cartel that is at this very moment moving full speed ahead to crush you, subjugate you, enslave you, with brutal efficiency.
We got to take to the street, but there has to be a very coordinated, strategic, philosophical, propagandist, approach.
Folks, what's happening is really, really bad. How is it possible that we don't have millions of people right now all over the country occupying, pushing back, strategizing, agitating, putting pressure on each city council member, exposing corrupt relationships with lobbyists of each public official, and then finding out ways to target each of them with very specific strategies to put pressure so they relent in their terribly corrupt practices.
Academics, philosophers, intellectuals, activists, artists, all working together against these fascists. With very tight-nit networks across the country, in constant communication, sharing strategic and tactical moves.
I could easily just forget about all this shit, and go take a nice walk in Alameda (I love the trails over there by the beach, with a great look of that magnificent city, San Francisco). I could watch an episode of one of my favorite HBO shows. I could go to the theater in San Francisco, or a music concert. I could just focus on getting as many consulting accounts as possible so I can make as much money as possible to take care of myself and my family, the hell with everything else...
But as a citizen, knowing what I know about what's happening to this country, and about the people that are being brutalized, acting like that would be a grotesque dereliction of duty as a citizen. Totally grotesque.
I'd rather get off my ass, get on BART, and join 20,000 people over there by Powell and Market in an indefinite occupation; I'd rather communicate with people in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, Dallas, El Paso, Seattle, Portland, to set up a nationwide network, and think tank focused on finding ways to not only defeat these goddamned corporate fascists, but bring them to justice for their crimes.
But I'm afraid that if after I publish this diary, if I go and park at the closest BART station and head over to Powell and Market with my sign, I'll be the only one there. It's not fun like that. Get up people! Time is of the essence.
I love Stephen Colbert's humor, as he talks about the banksters at the 10:11 mark:
Do you know why this is a great country? Because anywhere else on Earth we'd line them up and shoot them.
Let me give you a word of the philosophy of reform. The whole history of the progress of human liberty shows that all concessions yet made to her august claims have been born of earnest struggle. The conflict has been exciting, agitating, all-absorbing, and for the time being, putting all other tumults to silence. It must do this or it does nothing. If there is no struggle there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom and yet deprecate agitation are men who want crops without plowing up the ground; they want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters.----------------------------------------
This struggle may be a moral one, or it may be a physical one, and it may be both moral and physical, but it must be a struggle. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.
- Frederick Douglas