Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/03/02/class-little-word-elites-want-you-forget
The Democrats, like the Republicans, serve the interests of… any mobster with a checkbook. That’s how it works in Sacramento, where Republicans are a rarity. Hedges’ expectation – no way Sanders gets the nod – is rock solid, imho. The question before us: What we do during & after the mess in Milwaukee.
My gut is wrenching and it feels like cold water is running through my veins. I “fear” what Chris Hedges says is true. But…
Can things go differently? Is this the moment in history when human beings raise their consciousness levels and “create” without fear, the world we need and want?
Is it time?
Class, as it applies to our status among others, is a bad word in the American lexicon of allowable discourse. Sex, race, right, or left politics, etc, keeps our eyes averted from what’s really going on. So when a politician actually mentions class they are laughed at with scorn in the corporate(MSM) media world of blathering streams of endless noise in the information streams of the digital age. Too much info keeps us away from core issues such as class. That’s how they try to contain us. Let’s break from this toxic condition and demand a bit back from our taxes. Then demand that the oligarchs pay more, a lot more.
Can we imagine that the state of the DNC running of the (non)election is not an indication?
At this point, the collusion of MSM and party hacks has failed to destroy or to hide Sanders’ popularity. If he does not emerge at the convention with the nomination, we may reasonably assume a continuation of the foul play that has happened repeatedly up to the present.
If that is the case, we are effectively working without an electoral system, impaired or otherwise. If that, in turn, is the case, we need another way to negotiate.
The Presidency is dead. What remains is the “Oligarchy of the United States.”
As the Establishment Elites and their Media Manipulators descend on framing our one true hope of equality, Bernie Sanders, as the bane of all of our existence, (actually, just their’s) we face having a choice of Oligarchs to choose from if the powerful get their way and destroy Bernie for the second time.
In the coming couple months we are going to be called on to vote for a challenger to the existing would be king, in the Democratic primary.
Then, if it becomes clear the Establishment will not accept under any conditions, the one candidate that has been honest with the American people, Bernie Sanders, and relegates him once again to the waste bin of the Elite’s class war on integrity, we will be faced with another decision. Will we submit or will we fight for what is ours, what we deserve?
Everyone, prepare yourself for this as it will require commitment, but keep in mind one thing when you contemplate saying, “what can I do, I am only one person.”
Remember, this is not only about you. It’s about your children and theirs too.
It’s about Us.
I have only been in a couple fights in my life. You never know how you’ll come out of it. I was fortunate.
Should you be afraid? Maybe.
I don’t know about you, but I’m getting more angry as every damn day goes by, reading how the minority class, the rich and powerful, are using their wealth to destroy any chance that we will have to gain some ourselves.
I’m fucking mad and wouldn’t mind getting some long deserved payback.
How about you?
We only one life to live. Living under the control of those who consider you as a group to be endured, tolerated as long as you let “them” make all the big decisions for you, isn’t really living. It’s existing.
And whenever they wish, they can pass a bill that gives themselves $1.5 Trillion and what do they give you?
Get mad as hell, it helps make up your mind when it really counts.
I believe what Chris Hedges says is true and I empathize with how you feel.
What I’ve been feeling (every day) is similar to the feelings evoked by tornado warnings in the midwest. The sky turning a sickly shade of green/black, eery silence until the sirens start blaring and then the horrific sound of the churning, hideous tornado, fierce winds, debris flying . . . not sure what will remain when/if you can get out of the basement. Trying to be brave in front of my young child yet feeling absolutely terrified over the potential destruction.
Fortunately my family and I had a shelter where we would go and wait it out until the sirens stopped.
Those feelings---- while the sirens were blaring---- are so similar to what I feel now. But in this case, there is no respite with an “all clear”/“tornado warning canceled” followed by blue skies after the storm moved on.
We are in this massive vortex of destruction that is a mix of slimy neoliberalism, capitalism, sociopathy, psychopathy, narcissism with some apathy sprinkled here and there leading to abject destruction of the biosphere.
There is only so much we can do at this point.
This movement that Bernie Sanders has brought forth feels like preparing and taking as much action as possible during a storm that in some ways is out of our control (i.e. the level of habitat destruction and CO2 levels).
Always appreciate Hedges’ writing - concise & insightful, almost without fail.
i don’t have much faith that nonviolent resistance will accomplish our progressive aims, but I’d sure as heck rather try that out before resorting to terrorist measures…and i’ve had zero faith in the “democratic process” ever since i was a wee lad.
So, im more than open to attempting to paralyze the economy with coordinated strikes in the coming months (& whatever else constitutes “nonviolent resistance”).
Chris is giving us the brutal, unvarnished, unapologetic truth.
I return your empathy Caroline. Your analogy of a terrible storm puts it very well–the feeling of alarm and apprehension is so all consuming at times.
Watching the dismantling of democracy in our own time, and seeing the blank faces of those around us who are ignorant and indifferent to what is happening, only adds to the feelings of despair.
Having small children right now must be so hard. Teach that child for as long and for as much time as we have in this world. Your good words will never leave the heart of that child.
The number of people awakening at this time is growing. We can only wait and see how this all works out in the end.
The only issue I take with this, yet another, excellent piece by Hedges is when he wrote:
“Donald Trump may be a narcissist and a con artist, but he savages the oligarchic elite in his long-winded speeches to the delight of his crowds. He, like Bernie Sanders, speaks about the forbidden topic — class.”
I do not think it is accurate to lump d.t. in with Bernie Sanders in bringing up “class” to large crowds.
Does trump even know what “oligarchy” means?
There was a better way for Hedges to make the point about trump playing to his base
(operative word: “playing” to his base) It is a sick game . . a reality show. trump surrounds himself with oligarchs and loves authoritarian leaders. He despises women, poor people, people of color.
He may know that his base hates CNN, NPR, the Clintons, Nancy Pelosi etc. but that is not the equivalent of “savaging” the whole of the oligarchic elite and addressing class. It is but a portion that he can use to fuel the energy that is vomited out of hate.
The tiny print just under the picture of Bernie Sanders, with a photo credit, reads as follows:
“Open, nonviolent revolt against the oligarchic state is our only hope.”
Assuming that the theft succeeds, that Sanders is again denied the nomination, we may observe that we are without an electoral system, be it called impaired, good, bad, or indifferent. We need another way to negotiate.
I suppose that there are a lot of answers to the above. Revolution carries a lot of collateral damage. Even nonviolent revolution carried out by mass, nonviolent protests carries considerable as well, even insofar as it can remain nonviolent–and the state has refined ways of undercutting that more effectively than it could manage fifty years ago.
A short answer must be “By various methods.” Clearly, you vote against anyone who steals an election or nomination. But that is not enough. We need to be in the streets. But that is also not going to be enough: among other things, it is a response that the rulers have spent fifty years gearing up for. Since the early days of COINTELPRO, they have become quite good at despoiling good will endeavors of this sort.
Most of the power structure within the US is not nominally governmental, but corporate. We have to keep our money and the fruits of our labor away from any organization large enough to purchase a congressperson. That must eventually be done as a long-term proposition, creating options that we may care for ourselves without arming our rulers. But it might also be done on a stop-and-go basis, disrupting businesses in ways a bit like wildcat strikes.
Horatio Alger, the mythical street-urchin-turned-business-tycoon poster child of the oligarchs, has failed in his mission to distract the masses from the root causes of their collective dis-ease. Somewhere along the way the elite lost their total control of the message and folks figured out that we had been lied to for years by the institutions we were told we could trust. As with any revolutionary spark, it is difficult to pinpoint exactly why this occurred. Was it the equalizing effect of the internet and social media? Was it because gen x parents realized that, despite having worked hard to try to achieve financial stability, they are facing poverty with retirement and their children would likely have a lower standard of living than they had enjoyed at the same age? Can it be attributed to the disheartening realization that the evil soviet empire children of the latter 20th century had been raised to fear was nothing more than a convenient target for instilling nationalism and terror of any economic system other than wild-west capitalism? Perhaps it was born from being the hapless victims of the worst failed economic policy in generations and realizing that, in fact, nothing actually trickled down like Ronnie promised that it would. Whatever the reason, it is clear that discontent is morphing into rage, and the pundits are no longer able to distract from the fact that Rome is burning. We are all truly cursed by living in interesting times.
It might be time to batten down the hatches.
Homely things make a large difference in these situations, as is reflected in Dmitri Orloff’s accounts of the fall of the Soviet Union, or the stories of the organoponicos in Cuba during the same period. I’d recommend a garden, chickens, water security, ways to share residency.
But it’s hard to know lot of specifics, since circumstances will vary and change in so many respects.
Thanks for your very kind reply Paularae!
My daughter is now in college and is a leader in the democratic socialist club at her college and a fan of Hedges.
She vividly remembers those times during tornado warnings when we gathered the dogs, guinea pigs and whatever we valued most to take down to the storm shelter!
I gave birth to her when I still thought we could do something to slow/stop climate change and destructive capitalism. I guess that was ignorant. . . .naive of me. At the time I was involved with ecological restoration, land conservation. Not sure what we can restore now (though I still plant prairies!!) and of course my heart breaks for all the young people (and old people) that are living in this world that is dying (“faster than expected”) due to human greed and ignorance.
She is currently traveling over spring break---- to places she has never seen before.
I am receiving heartbreaking reports from her of decaying towns, poverty, excessively high numbers of road kill (including a lot of dogs in Arkansas) ----sights that are leaving her and her traveling companions in tears.
And, of course, so much is unknown regarding COVID-19 and what will happen after break when students hopefully return to campus—that in the midst of this “election cycle” as they call it. Let’s hope that we can banish that word “cycle” as it implies rinse, repeat, rinse repeat!
I hope that if the DNC blocks Sanders as Hedges predicts, we can all join forces; young/old a diverse and massive group of people and proceed to (Hedges quote):
*“Open, nonviolent revolt against the oligarchic state. Oligarchic rule must be destroyed. If we fail, our democracy, and finally our species, will become extinct.”
Yes! And lots of possums to join the chickens to eat the ever growing number of ticks!
I most definitely feel it is time to batten down the hatches. Have felt that way for years (a lifetime?) but now quite sure where to batten. A lot of people are struggling with this . . . where to go? Is any place safe? Can we live together in relative harmony in small communities?
In any case, thanks for your response.
In my opinion, in 2016, the nomination and election, were both stolen from the people.
Today, we find ourselves in the same spot. The elites in the establishment and their media mouthpieces are already saying out loud their intentions of stealing the nomination from Bernie, and since little to nothing has been done to protect election security, i.e., fair and honest voting and tabulation, they’re also preparing to cheat and steal this one.
Think that these actions are “non-violent?”
Stealing the masses right to self determine our governing officials is about as violent as it gets.
Strikes, disruptions of commerce will be perceived as violence to those it affects.
It will require tens of thousands minimum to prevent an apocalyptic response from the ruling class and all ages will be required to make the necessary statement.
As it becomes more apparent the violence of the ruling class will come first, preparations must be made.
My hopes rely on those whose futures will be the most lengthy.
Yes, our youth.
We, the older generations have let them down by continually supporting the two corporate war parties without question.
I don’t know why I even trust any lifelong Duopoly voters.
They just don’t see what’s right in front of them.
Oligarchic enablement for decades has made them blind.
Sanders should run as a 3rd party candidate if he wins the most delegates and does not get the nomination. He may even win in a 3-way race.
I agree Bob.
Keep saying the bad word.