Wednesday, November 16, 2011

cinquante-huit: This Is What Revolution Looks Like

Fuji Provia
Antelope Island State Park, Utah
July 2009

Get back into your cages,
they are telling us.
Return to watching
the lies
and celebrity gossip
we feed you in 24-hour cycles on television.
Invest your emotional energy
in the vast system of popular entertainment.
Run up your credit card debt. Pay your loans.
Be thankful for the scraps we toss.
Chant back to us our phrases about
and freedom.
Vote in our rigged political theater.
Send your young men and women to fight and die in useless,
unwinnable wars
that provide corporations with huge profits.
Stand by mutely
as our bipartisan congressional supercommittee,
either through consensus or cynical dysfunction,
plunges you into a society without basic social services
including unemployment benefits.
Pay for the crimes of Wall Street.


George Orwell wrote that
all tyrannies rule through fraud and force.
But that once the fraud is exposed,
they must rely exclusively on force.


There were times when I entered the ring as a boxer and knew
as did the spectators
that I was
woefully mismatched.
experienced boxers in need of a tuneup or a little practice,
would go to the clubs where semi-pros fought
lie about their long professional fight records
and toy with us.
Those fights became about
something other than winning.
They became about
dignity and self-respect.
You fought to say something about
who you were as a human being.
These bouts were punishing,
physically brutal and demoralizing.
You would get knocked down
and stagger back up.
You would reel backward
from a blow that felt like a cement block.
You would taste the saltiness
of your blood on your lips.
Your vision would blur.
Your ribs,
the back of your neck
and your abdomen would ache.
Your legs would feel like lead.
But the longer you held on,
the more the crowd in the club turned in your favor.
No one,
even you,
thought you could win.
But then,
every once in a while,
the ringer would get overconfident.
He would get careless.
He would become a victim of his own hubris.
And you would find deep within yourself
some new burst of energy,
some untapped strength and,
with the fury of the dispossessed,
bring him down.

- Chris Hedges, truthdig

     Mr. Hedges again, yes. The man has a lot of important things to say. And I'm all ears.

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