Power and the Tiny Acts of Rebellion by Chris Hedges

by Chris Hedges
Featured Writer
Dandelion Salad
November 22, 2010

Dr Margaret Flowers

Image by NESRI via Flickr

There is no hope left for achieving significant reform or restoring our democracy through established mechanisms of power. The electoral process has been hijacked by corporations. The judiciary has been corrupted and bought. The press shuts out the most important voices in the country and feeds us the banal and the absurd. Universities prostitute themselves for corporate dollars. Labor unions are marginal and ineffectual forces. The economy is in the hands of corporate swindlers and speculators. And the public, enchanted by electronic hallucinations, remains passive and supine. We have no tools left within the power structure in our fight to halt unchecked corporate pillage.

The liberal class, which Barack Obama represents, was never endowed with much vision or courage, but it did occasionally respond when pressured by popular democratic movements. This was how we got the New Deal, civil rights legislation and the array of consumer legislation pushed through by Ralph Nader and his allies in the Democratic Party. The complete surrendering of power, however, to corporate interests means that those of us who seek nonviolent yet profound change have no one within the power elite we can trust for support. The corporate coup has ossified the structures of power. It has obliterated all checks on corporate malfeasance. It has left us stripped of the tools of mass organization that once nudged the system forward toward justice.


via Truthdig

Copyright © 2010 Truthdig

Chris Hedges spent two decades as a foreign reporter covering wars in Latin America, Africa, Europe and the Middle East. He has written nine books, including Death of the Liberal ClassEmpire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle (2009) and War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning (2003).


[DS added the video]

Mario Savio’s Speech: You’ve got to put your bodies upon the gears (1964)

December 19, 2007

Mario Savio’s speech before the FSM sit-in

Bio: http://en.wikipedia.org/wik…


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13 thoughts on “Power and the Tiny Acts of Rebellion by Chris Hedges

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  5. Join your local Green Party …

    Just what do have to lose? In this way you have cut the strings of corporate parties and can organize for whatever the future holds …

    • Good in principle, but as numbers and support show, there’s a problem.

      Most of this comes down to public perception. They have limited resources, so would need to reply on “chain mails”, “chain photocopying” etc.

      As far as representation is concerned they have several big problems. Where they are tied into animal welfare etc, they have been tied in with extremists, which is detrimental to their image as a whole. It also, psychologically speaking, portrays them as unstable. If you ask people about their impressions of the party and how they would feel about them being in power, their main concerns would be about the degree of change, and chaos that may ensue.

      They need to portray themselves in a different light ideally.
      “The green party are going to completely overhaul Britain with radical new policies. Nothing will be the same.
      No, this may reflect media portrayal but it’s not accurate. We’re not looking to make drastic and risky decisions. Things will change slowly over time, but in line with the needs of the people as a whole.
      The way we tackle issues and awareness of our party as a whole is changing significantly this year. We’re interested in knowing the top issue for you as an individual with the government, and how you would like to see it changed and if necessary, funded.

      You can get up to date details of our policies on line at …..
      If we can push for your top issue to be addressed and provide you with an update, please add your email address below:

      IF we can address your issues, please
      tick here if you will consider voting for us as a result. ”

      lol that’s over-engineered. The only way I can see a big difference happening is literally if they make a successful attempt to involve everyone, and make them feel their issues are being dealt with.

      In most cases, all it’ll require is a quick skim through, and an email address adding to a list for a given subject.

      Most big changes require only a small change, one of perception. They need an image of a sensible party that actively works WITH the people as a whole.

      • Join your local Green Party and implement your ideas … As far as the Green Party being seen this way or that way, the influx of progressive ex-Democrats will cure that.

        Without a real threat from the left politically the Democrats will feel free to do corporate business as they have been doing for decades now …

  6. Neitzche said ”little acts of rebellion are more important than a revolution ”. it is soooooo true . we see where revolutions end up . power changing hands. and when we look at all the world’s problmes its easy to get overcome . we cannot change the world , but we can change our little corner of the world if we act.

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  8. Here you go. Those in power don’t want you to oust them. That’s common sense. You could view every failed and mocked political party as an example aimed to put you off the idea. Most people wouldn’t consider it, because in short they don’t know where to start, or are worried about the end result!

    1) http://www.wikihow.com/Create-a-Political-Party
    A simple guide to what you need to get started. In terms of people, this is the electronic age. Discuss this on-line with like minded people. Google forums for politics. Say you’re interested in forming a new party, whos up for it. On-line, part time for now etc.

    2) Don’t be pushed into corners. You’re invited unprepared to a show or interview. Don’t go if not sure. Work on your own terms and own grounds. If you want public opinion, go for it. You have the means to do so, and make it clear that’s what you’re going to do. Random selections. Take time to think about it. Most foolish moves are made in a hurry.

    3) Decide on your general policies and summarise them all. People are often worried about redical change or upheaval. Reassure them that initially things will remain as they are – that over time you plan to gradually re-shape things in line with what the public want and need. Have that as 1 side of your letter. On the other, have a form for them. Ask them what they want changed and how they would make it work / pay for it. They don’t have to be right or accurate. It’s all ideas, and some may work. Add a tick box below… if we can address this for you, will you vote for us?

    4) Make people feel involved. As that when they get this form / letter, they copy it and give it to people around them, and they do the same. You’re in essence lacking the resources and funding of other parties. Use people as your resource.

    I’d encourage anyone to give it a go. Nothing to lose above after all. It shows initiative and drive if anything.

    Hell there might be a new option next year.

  9. Another case where media spin and misrepresentation gradually adds nails to it’s own coffin. I’m increasingly spotting and desregarding spin and misrepresentation from the media (which in all fairness should be made illegal as per slander or libel.

    To be frank, in the past I reached the conclusion here in the UK that it makes no difference which party is elected. The only difference from a personal perspective is the “face in the papers”. The rest is, as they say, politics and spin.

    There are a growing number of people unhappy with the way things are, and gorwing increasingly distrusting of press and lies.

    The only, in theory, simple challenge is to a) register a new party, b) speak openly to people around you about it, discuss their ideas and how you would all like to see things changed c) define that as your general “policy”, and that’s all it has to be – governments frequently fail to live up to it anyway. You find out what you can do once you get in power and discover your options eh! d) Get them to speak to people around them, and spread the word. It’s the old chain effect. Perhaps all of them copy a document for people to fill in and send back. As they pass it on, people ahead of them do the same. Chain letters in practise. Same principles online.

    Media and conditioning have made people believe that such things can’t be achieved or changed. As long as people succumb to that brainwashing and believe in the futility of it all, there will be no change. Ultimately, you require common sense and free will.

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