What is Dissent Against Dissent? The Third Way to Revolution by Rocket Kirchner


Image by Christopher Rose via Flickr

by Rocket Kirchner
Writer, Dandelion Salad
Rocket Kirchner (blog)
Rocket Kirchner (youtube channel)
February 18, 2016

Dissent is the rebellion against the established order of society. Dissent against dissent is the rebellion of both the dissenters and the established order of society. It is not to be confused with counter-revolutionaries that seek to prop up the established order. We shall call the established order of society Model A, and dissent against the established order Model B.

The question is what is dissent against dissent? It is the third way that proves itself to be effective for the overall good without trampling the lives of others. So many times in history the oppressed have risen up in dissent against the established order of oppression only to become oppressors themselves.

This renders both Model A and Model B ineffective in real change for the good of all. Dissent against both of them seek a permanent solution free from all oppression both from without and from within.

How in the world does one construct a model of a final dissenting position effective for the good of all? First off, it has to take the uncompromising position that it will harm no one. Tall order. Model A and Model B both play the game that the end justifies the means, which is why they are both stuck in a cycle of destruction. This is the trap that dissent against dissent must resist. There can be no margin of error. None.

The salvific agonistes of final dissent must seek once and for all to uproot the source of all that stands in the way of redeeming the all without harming any. An impossible tightrope to walk you might say. This is not some wild eyed utopia or relativistic ideology as shown in books like Thomas More’s Utopia or Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels. Far from it. It must be pragmatic empathy. And it must have the accuracy of arithmetic itself.

It must speak and breathe like a calligraphy with ink and space. It must dance in the waters of life and shun the culture of death. Models A and B have both cut off humanity’s air supply. They suffocate humanity in the name of doing good to humanity. They both fight each other in an oppressive order and reactionary disorder forever circling each other as in an Escher painting.

When Beat poet and writer Jack Kerouac was on William F. Buckley’s Firing Line in 1968, he told Buckley, “I believe in order, tenderness, and piety.” This was in the context of a discussion about the Chicago riots at the Democratic Convention. In one fell swoop Kerouac condemned both the abuse of the police and the violence of those who rioted. Kerouac expressed a third way; a form of order that included and led to tenderness and piety. Kerouac was in dissent against dissent.

It is my real heartfelt conviction that the revolution of order, tenderness, and piety does not represent the dead-end split-screen battle of establishment/dissent, but rather an alternative to them both. Look at the endgame: Piety. This word is so strange to our modern ears that we really don’t know what to make of it. On the other hand, even in its strangeness, we need it. This triad of beauty is the winning ticket for all. Order, tenderness, and piety is freely expressed without crushing anyone underfoot. Instead it flowers up from within to heal others.

This dissent against dissent breaks the deadlock of all collective brutal self-projection and provides space for something truly new to emerge. This newness of what is called piety attracts flies like honey. It spreads like one candle lighting another and another and another in a hush of stillness and wonderful emanation between human beings. One could almost call it Divinity Incarnate, the Kingdom of Heaven within, the Parousia indescribable, Dante’s “The love that moves the sun and the stars.” Yes, one could call it that. One really could. As a matter of fact, I think I will.


Buckley, Kerouac, Sanders and Yablonsky discuss Hippies

SensitiveSkinTV on May 17, 2011

A 1968 episode of William F. Buckley’s Firing Line, featuring a drunken Jack Kerouac, the Fug’s Ed Sanders and a clueless academic, Lewis Yablonsky, discussing the “Hippie” movement.


[Rocket’s latest song]

Rocket Kirchner: Harmony in the Field

pflvtmh on Feb 18, 2016

Written by Rocket Kirchner, and performed by Rocket Kirchner and the BGs.

from the archives:

Civilization and Relentless Volunteerism by Rocket Kirchner

An Eye for an Eye Makes the Whole World Blind by Rev. John Dear

Everyone Has to Practice Nonviolence. Now. by Rev. John Dear

Father John Dear: Jesus Weeps: Resisting Violence, Building Peace

Why Dostoevsky Matters Today by Rocket Kirchner

Rivera Sun’s The Dandelion Insurrection reviewed by Guadamour


18 thoughts on “What is Dissent Against Dissent? The Third Way to Revolution by Rocket Kirchner

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  6. I can see the beauty of ultimate dissent, but, at least in English (and probably also in Italian) the prefix “dis” has a negative intonation, e.g. dissent, dis-harmony, dis-qualify, etc. Which is why I am suggesting a more “positive” term.

    • I can see your point , but I am not using the linguistics optimist / pessimist terminology . If one divides the division by being in dissent against dissent , it does not cause division as its endgame but rather harmony in the field of you listen to my song below .
      Final dissent is rebellion against dissent itself as a divisive act . Hence , the unitive phase complete follows.

  7. “Good article and agree 100% with it, unfortunately it will never be accomplish because of greed of society no matter which one.”

    Another comment from #2:

    “Well, look at history, it is a repetition of events and society never learns. Now in Oregon the Feds are going after the protesters and that will trickle down to all other states. Change as the article suggests will never happen or if it does it will take several generations.”

  8. “I would also agree to call it “The love that moves the sun and the stars.” It doesn’t need complicated explanations and doesn’t use words potentially associated with negativity.”

    • What words are associated with negativity ? I did not use any such words .
      There is nothing negative about the Kingdom of Heaven within or Divine incarnation . These terms are Dantian .
      Dante last quote from his last Canto in “Paradiso” is in keeping with the same Beautific vision of the former words that came before it .
      What I am trying to say in a poetic way is that this is ultimate dissent that will really last .

      • I’d say that’s the actual point of what you are saying, poetry; or to put it another way, all real art, great art ~ is dissent from dissent.

        Nice song Rocket, talented accompanists.

        I’m not entirely convinced by the Beat movement, but if you follow the Firing Line sequence on YouTube you get Ginsberg next, describing what really happened with Buckley, Sanders et al. on that occasion, then some Burroughs Beatprop, then a shy and nervous Kerouac on Steve Allen’s show and finally the documentary… about the celebrated Monsieur Jack.

        We’ve certainly moved on from (Herb Caen of the San Fran. Chronicle’s) hippie freak out CIA salad days and the spineless banality of schlock TV.

        • David , the clip of Ginsberg in Chicago in 68 is a great example of dissent against dissent . He rejected the police and the violence of protesters . Art mixed with Pacifism is dissent against dissent .

          Burroughs idea of creating language in such a way as to short circuit power , and Kerouac’s work , as well as Thomas Merton stating that being a monk is the third way – a protest – a sign of contradiction . ..are great examples .

          also as John Cage said about Yoko Ono ‘s work being a person of ideas . her ideas were thought bombs of dissent against dissent .

          dissent against dissent takes the LONGVIEW without utopia or ideology . it is present / future.

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