UNPOLISHED IMPRESSIONS

Work is murder and life is rushed. Hence the less polished diary entry. Mea culpa!

I think it was Foucault who remarked on the decentralization of power in the modern world and how goddamn hard this makes change. Like, when the King was murdering and torturing peasants in the middle ages, you would get your buddies and some pitchforks and run down to the castle to set things right — there was a clear cause of suffering that could be adjusted when people had finally had enough.

In the modern world, there is no central castle, nor is there one central person clearly at the root of the suffering. Modern people are so angry and scared — but the best they can do is general protests in the open air because there’s no castle to storm, there’s no clear king to overthrow. The architecture of power is so labyrinthine that it’s hard to know what even to do in the face of unspeakable evil.

What one person or cause is responsible for the mass shootings, the school shootings, the weekly police murders, the mass extinction, the climate crises, the water crisis, and so very many other issues?

So yes, vote, learn about government, donate, do all those small things that contribute to great change in the end; but my god, I understand so much better the plight of modern young people in a world of corporatocracy, dark money, and hidden strings. You can’t even target your righteous rage on a single focal point and feel as if you’ve made a difference — it’s like punching a ghost or kicking the wind.

I don’t know the solution, obviously. But I’m thinking an awful lot about the problem.

On the political level, I think that creating real transparency (not the fake “transparency” of the Obama White House that promised to be transparent and immediately declared war on whistle-blowers like Snowden), revitalizing independent investigative journalism, eliminating Citizens United, prosecuting rich senators who take millions in dark money and bribes, and eliminating the Revolving Doors between Congress, the DOD, and K-Street — this will all play a small, small role in trying to reverse the cancer.

But on the meta-level, on a sociocultural and (dare we say it) spiritual level, we have got to do something about reclaiming our souls as human beings. We have to relearn how to care for each other, or at minimum to stop doing so much to hurt one another. We need to expose the hollowness of greed, the emptiness of power, the crying hunger for love, purpose, community, and meaning that we try desperately to drown in a flood of digital streaming and feeds and drugs (legal or illegal), all after slaving away at all hours doing jobs that can (in so many cases) underpay and dehumanize us while feeling so very pointless. We need to eliminate the programming that isolates us and engenders fear and hatred — not only towards ourselves but towards other people. We need to learn how to love again.

Anyway, I kept thinking about Mr. Foucault as I skimmed the (dismal) headlines, and it struck me that it’s awfully hard to fight or excise tumors that you can’t even clearly see. For that reason, I most certainly do not mock or make light of people who at least try to raise their voices and draw awareness to the problems and make some change. And though I don’t personally have the solutions — hell, I don’t even know if the solutions yet exist — I pray that we can learn to work together to create some new ones.

No, I don’t know if I or if YOU (singular) could make it through the turmoil. But I know for a goddamn fact that WE can do it TOGETHER.

And maybe that’s where it all starts, whether your particular trials and tribulations are happening in 1020 or 2020.

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