Monday, October 7, 2013

Review and Reflection


Over a year and a half has passed since my last posting to this blog. It was a time during which the Occupy movement sugared down to its most ardent and determined members, during which the Burlington Occupy dispersed and I affiliated with Central Vermont Occupy, during which I moved to a farm and out again, and to a room in Burlington, during which I began to work as a carpenter; during which a chronic injury brought my pending senescence close to mind; a time during which I have struggled with impotence and depression, and I learned the profound possibilities of love with a woman who could not be mine; during which I rejected Susan Bourne with finality, and came to question that choice; during which I have attended seminars and a class at UVM, and began my application to UVM for a master's degree. I have attended my therapy with regularity, and acquired discipline I had forgotten since I went on disability. It is a time during which I have learned how dependent I am on other people, and how much I want to not live alone.

In some few words, it has been a tumultuous, busy, productive, existentially stressful year. I have continued to write but fell out of the habit of putting that writing here. There is much I would like to share and if I do, if you care, you will need to sort the chronology for yourself. 

Here is my response to an article I read today. The context is the showdown in Congress over the budget and the debt ceiling. First the article, then my response:

Review of The white man's last tantrum  by Robert Parry

The Author Robert Parry offered the first cogent analysis that explains the desperation of the Republican Party that I have heard from the media. Kudos.

That said, he neglected to integrate the explanation offered by some commenters and the explanation I have been giving to my friends, that the real driver is the incompatibility of wealth and democracy. ("Mittens Romney", Maria OConnor & Chromex). Democracy is a system for the distribution of power. With the franchise legally almost universal, the principle of "One person, One vote" is by definition contrary to the ideology which asserts that the rich deserve to get richer while the poor do the work.

I think the Robert Parry article explains much of the mass movement on the ground, how it is possible for wealthy oligops to convince poor white guys that they are on the same team, but it does not integrate the radical anti-social message from the right that the right to be wealthy must be preserved, and that many middle and lower-class folks - of all races - want to believe: That they can climb out of poverty and become comfortable in America, not from luck but by working and playing by the rules. HA!

The conflict in Congress is first Colosseum scale class contest we have seen, riding a dragon of racism with some ideologies of individuality and state's rights thrown in for costume effect. No more waiting for the revolution to begin. But the question remains: Can we make the pain worthwhile?