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“Know thy self, know thy enemy. A thousand battles, a thousand victories.” —Sun Tzu
Most of the so-called “progressives” (like the impotent keyboard warriors at Daily Kos and the myriad other smug and self-satisfied “liberal” blogs littering the Internet landscape) don’t even know themselves, let alone knowing their enemies. They are oblivious to the fact that they are centrists on the political spectrum in a nation teeming with seething social conservatives–patriarchal, “Christian” (read institutionalized hijackers and subverters of Christ’s messages of love and compassion), racist (whether it be overt or covert), speciesist, homophobic caricatures of human beings who sold their souls for God, country, and the almighty DOLLAR and who are pissed off at the wrong people for the wrong reasons.
We are force-fed the carefully maintained lie that we live in a “free country,” a false notion most often upheld by the existence of our vast, yet, nearly impotent social freedoms. Why impotent? Simple. Most US Americans are too deeply indoctrinated by corporate propaganda and pacified by bread and circuses (like American Idol and the Super Bowl) to utilize their Constitutional rights to advance social justice causes. And when people or groups do exercise them, they are eventually co-opted and consumed by the corporatist, plutocratic system as the[J1] latest “hip fad,” replete with T-shirts, bumper stickers, clothing lines, music, movies, and more. Don’t repress revolutionary thought; commodify it! That’s the American Way. Don’t beat them—buy them off and use them to make a profit!
Perhaps some of the masses are beginning to awaken from their slumber of false consciousness (the psychological mind fuck that the dominant culture “knows best” and has our best interests at heart) as the vaunted US economy implodes and the 2% of the population that owns 50% of the wealth (and whose political and economic influences enable them to run this country like Mafia bosses) becomes more anxious as they consider the historical consequences for those elites who left the masses to subsist on “cake.”
Hence, the modern-day Marie Antoinettes build more gated communities and funnel billions upon billions of dollars toward “national defense,” “homeland security,” and the prison industrial complex (oh, you really thought those additional cops and prisons, those armies, that weaponry and that technology were there to protect YOU?) as unemployment soars, financial giants shamelessly raid the public coffers for massive bailouts, homelessness proliferates, poverty levels skyrocket, the middle class vanishes, and more.
But the chances that the masses are truly awakening are slim. It appears that most of the people who suffer the daily grind of the gears of the merciless machine of capitalism persist in genuflecting to the “Godly.” Who are the “Godly chosen ones” in the sociocultural sewer known as “America?” They are, of course, those Calvinistic heroes of the Horatio Alger tales, the infinitesimally small percentage of the millions upon millions who strive for success and actually attain the pinnacle of achievement in the US: material riches.
Blessed by a dominionist, anthropomorphic, insecure (consider the case of Job), wrathful “God” with a multiple personality disorder (who am I now? Jehovah, Jesus, or the Holy Spirit?), the likes of the Waltons, the Mars, the Kochs (wait, these scoundrels INHERITED their billions—apparently this emotionally disturbed “God” pre-determines who is going to lead a virtuous life and rewards them at birth) wallow in cash while most of the rest of us suck hind tit, some relegated closer to the hind than others.
Never mind that these billionaires and almost all their peers acquired (or kept, in the case of heirs) their vaults of cash by ruthlessly using and abusing employees, customers, competitors, the environment, and nonhuman animals to death, devastation—and, in some instances, extinction. Yet many in this country worship these morally retarded parasites who suck the life out of the working class and the rest of the planet to sustain their mansions, yachts, villas, private islands, fleets of autos, high-priced gigolos and whores, drugs, palatial estates, and all manner of obscene self-indulgent excesses.
Meanwhile, we had tens of thousands of angry white people (who identify closely with an empathy-deficient female politician from Alaska whose IQ score is 7 points higher than that of the right faucet handle on my kitchen sink—sadly, the one on the left beat her out by .75 points) menace the Capitol with overt threats of gun violence if our plutocratic government dared to pass legislation, that in the ominous protestors’ stunted, capitalist–indoctrinated minds was tantamount to Socialism.
Not to be bound by the ridiculous constraints of critical thinking, the Tea Baggers didn’t stop to consider that the president whom they dubbed a Socialist was a corporate attorney, is bought and paid for countless times over by the moneyed Right Wing interests who set the course for the increasingly Titanic-like ship of Amerikkka, and is the corporatist puppet who signed a “health care reform” bill that will prove to be a boondoggle for major health insurance companies. Rather than providing guaranteed health care to all people at no cost (like EVERY OTHER industrialized nation), these self-indulgent playground bullies of the world (Big Pharma and the host of rapacious corporate interests) are now free to continue sticking it to the poor, working and middle classes.
So where are the “progressive” elements of our society while Tea Bagging drones overtly threaten to assassinate a lesser evil corporate, capitalist, centrist president?
Are they out in the streets counter-protesting? Hmmm. I haven’t seen them.
Are they fighting the ‘powers that be’ through the legal system (unjust as it is)? Show me where!
Are they engaging in direct action to advance political or social change? If they are, it isn’t readily apparent.
Yet they have the time and the energy to tap, tap, tap away on their computer keyboards—Internet warriors that they are. Counter propaganda and networking online ARE crucial elements in the struggle for social change, but the Internet is where their activism begins AND ends.
The irony is that these arm-chair quarterbacks, self-proclaimed liberals, and faux progessives (bearing in mind that the reforms they support merely serve to perpetuate the vampiric, soul-sucking system of capitalism) don’t hesitate to viciously attack the animal rights, anarchist, LGBTA, and radical environmental movements, which are virtually the only Leftist groups which are actually taking radical action to confront and subvert the corporate-state complex fixated on murdering the planet, one bomb, one gallon of toxic sludge, one slaughtered factory farm animal, one starving child, one barbarically beaten gay person, and one raped and murdered woman at a time.
Sitting in front of their computer screens with one thumb up their asses whilst the other hand types, these traitors who dare to claim support for socially-just causes collaborate, enable and perpetuate the systemic destroyers of the Earth and the mass murderers of many of its sentient inhabitants.
And they don’t appear to have the spine to complement their Internet activism by stepping out to the street to engage the enemy.
To them I pose the question, rather than selling us out to our mutual enemy—the far Right who dominate this country in so many ways–why not join us, your natural allies?
What? Are you afraid if anarchists and vegans become political power-houses you might actually have to give up your nasty addictions to munching on the rotting flesh of murdered sentient beings, stop the obscene waste of potable water and grain that goes to sustain those who are forced to provide their bodies for your “meat,” and become healthier in the process? Oh the horrors!
Or is it that you might have to give up your idiotic pipe dream of becoming the next Bill Gates or Oprah?
Or that “traditional marriage” might be “destroyed” by same sex unions?
Or that the mighty US would no longer rape, pillage and plunder nearly every other country on the planet to keep us in the life-styles to which we’ve become accustomed?
A truly democratic and egalitarian society? Get the fuck out!
Drawing women, children, minorities, LGBTA’s, the poor, and nonhuman animals into our moral sphere and refraining from enslaving, torturing and murdering them? Never!
No, sir! “Liberals” and “progressives” in the US would rather call us “crazy terrorists” and cheer on the FBI and other law enforcement entities as they waste untold millions of tax-payer dollars surveilling, harassing, intimidating, arresting, and jailing us than to join us in challenging the prevailing paradigm premised on hierarchy, dominionism, might makes right, social control mechanisms, class stratification, imperialism and a host of other ills and abominations.
Yet it isn’t too late for enablers of malevolence to get to know themselves and their enemies……
Join us in our protests, demonstrations, and actions. And we’ll join you in yours. If you have any….
Jason Miller, the Senior Editor and Founder of TPC, is a tenacious vegan abolitionist and animal rights activist who lives in Kansas. He has a boundless passion for animal liberation and anti-capitalism. Addicted to reading and learning, he is mostly an autodidact, but he studied liberal arts and philosophy at the University of Missouri Kansas City. In early 2005, he founded the widely read radical blog, Thomas Paine’s Corner. Jason is an accomplished, prolific essayist and his writings on social and political issues have appeared on hundreds of alternative media websites over the last few years. He is a press officer for the North American Animal Liberation Press Office, an editor for The Right to Have and Arm Bears and Canine Crusaders, and the founder of Bite Club of KC, a grassroots animal rights activist group which he started in Kansas City in 2009 and through which he and his allies give animal exploiters some serious hell. He is married to Kiantha Shadduck. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org