For all the avowed patriots who demand my Pledge of Allegiance and salutes on Loyalty Day, Fourth of July, and other patriotic, militarized holidays, I fling this question to your hearts: how deep and far does your loyalty to your country run?
Curse the war culture! It leaves us at a loss for words, bereft of metaphors to describe our situation. Our minds become blank slates, unable to recognize dangers at the door unless they carry assault weapons or drop bombs on our heads.
There are those who would have us fold up our banners and take down our protest signs. They urge us to be reasonable and polite. They expect us to cram our dissent into narrow boxes of occasional grumbling comments and take our frustration out at the election box once every few years. These people write letters to the editor of small town newspapers claiming that the visible signs of dissatisfaction – pickets, protesters, political signs – are bad for business and distasteful.
Politicians have devolved into nothing more than schoolyard bullies stealing lunch money from small children, harassing the defenseless, and expecting to receive rewards and gold stars of approval.
The challenges that confront us loom imminent, yet still unknown. Like dangers in the dark, we can sense but not clearly see them. Our government is preparing new assaults upon our rights and maneuvering more regressive unjust legislation through the machine of the political apparatus. The wealthy scheme up new ways to rob and impoverish us. Corporations craft increasing ways to profit, even if it means destroying our water, air, land, and health. We are facing dangers on all sides, in shapes and sizes we can barely imagine.
When times are bleak and darkness deepens, ancient yearnings of humanity stir in our hearts. We long for the simple things that our ancestors always sought: safety for our families, roofs over our heads, food in our bellies, rest for our weary bodies. In other words, we yearn for the basic human rights have been denied to far too many generations over the course of human history.
When truth and reality are shattered into a thousand shards of deception, skewed and slanted into vicious weapons for power and control, how can we in the Dandelion Insurrection move forward?
We are serving ourselves up on silver platters to the oligarchs and giant corporations. We have apples of misinformation in our mouths and sprigs of patriotic parsley tucked behind our ears. Must we complacently acquiesce to being pot-roasted pigs? Rise up!
Corporate demons possess our nation’s soul. They crept in stealthily, full of trickery and deception, but now they’re lodged in place, as surely as if they had stormed our homes and halls of power with guns and tanks. Perhaps we’d recognize their coup if they had assassinated a flesh-and-blood president instead of merely stealing the souls of all our elected leaders.
Don’t wait until the perils of extraction are on your doorstep, in your backyard, or poisoning your water. Look around! Pay attention to the stories coming from the north, south, east, west. See the noose of hard truth tightening.
A smoothly functioning society is created and maintained by the people. Children go to school, workers show up at their jobs, shipments are made, groceries and purchases are bought, bills are paid, goods and services are delivered; and so on. In times of justice, when the workings of society are fair, respectful, and uphold the rights and dignity of humanity, then the people have every reason to collectively maintain functional workplaces, schools, roads, social events, and so on.
When the forces of destruction, hate, bigotry, greed, and violence rise into power, there are three things they steal before they plunder the treasury. Stopping them is where the struggle for life begins.
Billionaire Buddha is Rivera Sun‘s third novel. In it David Grant, a self-made billionaire, goes from the pinnacle of a most unfulfilling and emotionally deprived material success to homelessness, destitution and the spiritual contentment of knowing himself (which is the embodiment of Buddhahood). Sun describes the changes Grant goes through in a clear writing style which holds the reader and compels them to turn the pages to see what happens next in this book which should be read by all Americans with their general love of money.
(Rome) I am reading for the first time the work of Chilean born writer, Roberto Bolaño. His novel, Amulet, set in a phantasmagoric Mexico City that, perhaps, also because it is Latin America’s biggest city, represents the entire crushed and tortured and imprisoned and murdered Latin America while also his characters are emblematic of the suffering and decimation of much of the best of the Latin American youth. Perhaps the author chose to highlight Mexico City, not only because of the massacre of Mexican students there in 1968, but also because he moved there as a teenager and lived there many years before moving to Spain and Barcelona where he died at 50.
by Kendall Mercer
crossposted from greanvillepost.com
August 11, 2015
In Defense of the Political Novel
TIME OF EXILE, the third volume of Gaither Stewart’s Europe Trilogy, is a political novel. I see no reasons to conceal it or to feel shame. On the contrary.
Are the novels of Gabriel Garcia Marquez or Miguel Angel Asturias not political? And worthy of the Nobel Prize.