Monday, October 10, 2011


Once upon a time, We the People, entrusted you with a sacred task. We gave you the powers to build institutions of democracy, to legislate laws to protect and nurture democracy, fund enterprises that would enable all to build and live in a society where the bounties of our labors and the gifts of the earth could be shared with equity and responsibility by all. On trust, we elected those who would speak for us and in good faith we believed in what you told us. We the People did imbue you with some of the powers vested in us apriori and in our naivety allowed you to drink from that cup of power. And drink you did. You drank until there was no end to your addiction. You hid that from us behind elaborate smokescreens and we let that happen. Shame on us!! 
Our temples of law you made into temples of inequity. Our fields of grain and fruit you turned into wastelands of poison. Our rivers and lakes you turned into drains and cesspools. Our money that was an honest representation of the value of our labors you turned into shackles of debt. Our forums of democracy you turned into brothels where the highest bidders could have the loudest voice. Our homes became objects of speculation. Our places of learning became places of indoctrination. You took our language and turned it into a parody of itself. You made night mean day and black mean white. You turned the poor into the unworthy and the weak into the unwanted. You took our faith and contorted it into a call for war. You took our love and turned it into a market for selfishness. You took our time and banished us to a schedule. You took our labor and banished us to unemployment. You took our children and sold them to irrelevancy. You took our aged and left them in purgatory. There are no more crimes left for you to commit.
You stand today in front of us and sneer. You condescend to ask us “What do you want?” “What is your plan?” “What exactly are you protesting against?”
Here is our reply – “What we want you cannot give. By Occupying Wall Street all over this planet we are taking back the trust and powers we once gave you. Your time is up.”
You committed your crime by banishing one little word from our world. We did not notice. Shame on us again. But now we know. You banished the question “why?” And in doing so you managed smartly to banish history in the smokescreen of progress, success and acquisition. ’ Why’ is the word that links our history to our future. By letting you erase the word and twist its meaning we lost our history and with that our way to our future.
In reclaiming our history we will reclaim our future. In that, you are irrelevant as long as you remain wedded to the addiction of power. To rejoin humanity you will have to Occupy Wall Street by leaving it behind.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007


Ecological studies teach us that each thing in a niche is there because it delivers a value to the niche. Otherwise it is not there. No resource is ever wasted. As we have seen in Nature, waste eventually kills ecological niches.

Further, the myriad diversities in species and their special relationships with and within an ecological niche ensure that all resources within a niche are consumed very efficiently but in such a differentiated manner that the consumption is sustainable. The diversity makes sustainability possible.

There are no monocultures in Nature. Diversity, as a principle, is inviolate. When diversity dies, ecologies die. Only artificial sustenance keeps non-diverse “ecologies” / cultures alive. Just as huge amounts of artificial irrigation, herbicides, pesticides and fertilizers are needed to keep modern agriculture alive, a similar series of artificial “life-support” systems are needed to keep a monoculture system of exchange and monoculture system of work alive.

That is what we have today – a monoculture system of value exchange – a currency based exchange and a monoculture system of work – only work that enhances / maximizes the value of currency is considered of value. All other forms of exchange and / or work are considered either useless or entirely marginal (in the best case it is of entertainment value.)

This is a macabre ‘folie a deux’ of two monocultures that together require a vast infrastructure of artificial sustenance to survive. It requires bigger and bigger dams of currency (global funds of all types!) with currency flows that can only be controlled at one point and must be afforded unrestricted flow (WTO, World Bank, Transnational Corporations, Globalization), it requires heavier and heavier doses of fertilizer (cheap labor), herbicides and pesticides (military protection, unfettered work laws, no environmental regulation, no taxes etc…) just to stay alive.

This utter devaluation of all assets other than currency assets and all work other than currency producing work share a common principle. The “thing” is valued over the service it provides – be it trees, water, flora, fauna or people, it is objectification gone mad! Time itself is devalued – its role as an infinite bank account of possibilities is sacrificed in favor of instant conversion to currency – the highest possible return in the shortest possible time. It is as though time itself has no value unless it is both expended in the pursuit of currency and also converted into currency. Time itself has been objectified.

And so, you may ask – what of it. Life is good. Stock indices all over the world are up and booming. Traditionally developing nations are enjoying boom times! Historically speaking – unemployment levels are low. As long as we feed the monster we have nothing to fear – its full speed ahead! What’s wrong with this picture?

A gas tank with its last drops of gas in it will allow you to push pedal to metal and floor it and the engine will roar forward! No…it’s not that we may run out of gas or air or some other such commodity – we’ve always found a way around such obstacles….we are running out of humanity. We have completely internalized the monsters diet! We actually compete to feed it!! And we did not even make a pact with the Devil! We got nothing in return – we do this for free! Why? Why do we commit communal suicide?

Maybe it is as simple as this….we look upon ourselves as something above and removed from nature. We don’t need it. So….we believe we are kings of the hill…we can get away with anything. We overlook the fact that Nature does not need us. Not at all. We are not like the highest predator in the food chain. Nothing will happen if we disappear,…not even our pets will remember us only a few days after they get hungry! But in reality the situation is exactly the reverse…. When ecologies we depend upon deteriorate and die it is we who die first….and I am not just talking about natural ecologies. Humanity dies when mono-isms take over. Our cultural, emotional, spiritual bodies die! And when that happen a strange emptiness descends upon us. And that my friend is exactly what the monster feeds upon!

It takes a hell of a lot of junk to fill an empty life!

And that, my friends, is the engine of consumption!

It is not mindless consumption that makes our lives empty – it is the emptiness of our lives that breeds consumption!

Because, consumption is the deception that feeds the emptiness that keeps monocultures and mono-isms flourishing!

So, the next time you whip out that credit card stop a moment and ask yourself – do you need that credit card or does the credit card need you? Emptiness and Consumption…which is the Sith Lord and which the apprentice?

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

A Week's Wisdom

In this one week I have learned the following:

In Iran it is the practice that poor little children who steal bread for they are hungry have their arms crushed under a truck – as it is the Islamic law.

In the US legal advisors to the administration assure us that it is perfectly acceptable for the President to authorize a small boys testicles to be crushed in order to make his father ‘speak’. And that the Constitution should not come in the way of the Presidents powers as ‘under such unusual circumstances of war’ it should be accepted that he is above the law.

The Democratic party in the US survives by infanticide – it kills its own – and is actually a kind of parasite or Remora that lives by cleaning or picking off the crumbs dropped by the host – the Republicans.

U S Corporations are sitting on $634 billions of uninvested cash hoards and non-US corporations on a hoard of $908 billions. And stock markets all over the world are climbing upwards while unemployment and underemployment – remains endemic the world over.

The US (the only surviving super power on the planet) debt is something like $8.2 trillion. And climbing.

Glaciers (fresh water) are melting faster than ever and the global supply of fresh water is shrinking faster than ever. (expected to drop by about a 3rd in the next 20 years)

What matters is not when oil runs out – but when we peak the hill and the production of oil becomes a matter of distributing steadily declining volumes – current projections say somewhere between 2008 and 2010. Close to a billion people in China and India are in line to buy cars. If you follow the tentacles of oil all through our societies and see how many things it touches – you will understand why even a 10% drop will lead to Armageddon.

I read about The End of the Dollar Hegemony written by Hon. Ron Paul of Texas.

Viral diseases are spreading across the globe with the wind.

Children in the US and Europe and the upper classes of other countries are drinking themselves to oblivion starting at ages of 13 on.

An anti-obesity pill is on the verge of a breakthrough. There goes the fitness industry.

Desperate Housewives are chasing Sex in the City with Friends, Apprentices and Survivors. And the Olympics are sponsored by the greatest collection of SUVs and beer kegs ever seen! This is being beamed in dozens of different languages the world over and local variations of them are flooding the airwaves – spinning out across the universe at the speed of light!

Google these issues. Connect a few dots on your own. They are not random events. They are not the product of some gargantuan conspiracy. They are not the work of the Devil or of God. They are however the collective result of our obsession with borrowing to the hilt against all equity we may at one time have had in the future and being completely delinquent with paying the mortgage. You see, instant gratification comes with it’s own in-built time bomb – when we are insatiably gratified now, what use have we of the future?

The only question that remains then is – why are we so obsessed with NOW! ?

I will for now leave that to your own contemplations. But also with one hint – it is not because we are sinners and neither because we are gods.

Monday, February 13, 2006

The will of the people.

A friend made a remark today that sparked of a chain of thoughts. “What if,” he said, “what we are seeing truly is the will of the people?” Something in me reacted at the gut level – the people have no will! I wanted to scream – but I went away with this little episode churning in my head and then after a while the veils began to drop.

Man has a will when he is substantively engaged in his life. When he is producing it and consuming it by his own volition. When he is experiencing his life through his own senses and reflecting upon it through his own mind. When he is engaged with his humanity actively and not as a passive automaton.

“Man is the subject of History”, Marx once said. History is about Man and it is Man who creates it. Therein lies the dialectic of the will.

Today we live vicariously. We live through the produce of others and we consume our lives vicariously watching others paid to go through the entertaining pretenses of living it. We, at best, negotiate our right to exist and are awarded our consumption rights – each according to our credit histories.

We have abdicated our rights to experience our lives unmediated and with that we have abdicated our rights to our wills. The will of the people is a prime time TV show. If the ratings continue to drop it will be cancelled and not even a re-run will be forthcoming.

Why did this happen? The Founding Fathers enshrined for us the right to the pursuit of happiness – somehow that got switched to the pursuit of the happy hour somewhere along the way. The one deals with producing and experiencing joy the other deals with maximizing one’s consumption of it.

There are those who would have it so. For to have a society that is actively engaged in producing life implies a society that reflects upon the world around it, understands it and knows both it’s own and the worlds limits. It is a society where the will of the people is the primary mediator in its symbiosis with the world and life. Here the will of the people resides in We The People. It is a will that rests on autonomous thought. And there is no greater subversion of authority than that.

Authority and Will cannot co-exist. The one derives its ‘will’ by command. The other by experience and reflexion. As it is said in the Lord’s Prayer. It is the Lord’s Will that is to be done not ours. That is why Secular and Democracy are symbiotically bound and that is why a non-secular democracy is an oxymoron. But if experience and reflexion can be cut off then the link to one’s will is severed. And society can be granted the illusion of willing what we see today and still not see that they live in a suicidal illusion.

What we are seeing today is not the will of the people – it is a people without a will, in every sense of the word.

The question that remains then is why should an all powerful, omniscient God be interested in a species as pathetic as this?

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

We The People

From historic, even pre-historic times, Kings, Queens and tribal leaders have claimed some sort of divine patrimony in their claim to power. Rights flowed down from the Gods to their chosen favorites who then visited them upon the people!

Along the way some variations on the theme appeared in the form of Plutocratic Republics in the form of Greek cities, Sparta, Rome and even some of the cities of renaissance Italy. The basics however remained unchanged; Rights and Power flowed from the Gods, the intermediaries were blessed and the subjects just had to suck it up!

Then came a seismic event – somewhere around mid to late 1700s to the early 1800s – today referred to as the Age of Reason followed by the Enlightenment – when some intrepid souls made the intellectual leap of saying that just as natural phenomena could be understood and explained by uncovering the laws and principles governing the natural order of the universe so could the phenomena of the social order be understood and explained.

To cut a long story short from this came the three most important words in the history of man to date (in any language!) – We The People.

Contained within these three words is the concept that all universal rights and powers are a priori vested in the human community at large. And, at their pleasure and in their wisdom We the People do give to various institutions within society the right to exercise some – a chosen few – of those rights and powers in our name and for our collective benefit. The Executive, The Judiciary, The Legislative; Presidents, Prime Ministers, Senators and Judges – are all empowered by the people in each their limited ways. And implicit in this arrangement is the hitherto unspoken corollary that that which is NOT given remains – inviolate – with We the People.

This tectonic shift in the source and locus of rights and powers liberates human kind to crawl out of the Dark Ages and leap to the Moon. Free enterprise, the pursuit of happiness, social welfare and universal education all become possible because it becomes the pleasure of We the People to make it so.

Human history however, also teaches us that the Powerful never voluntarily share or relinquish power (no matter how small the power!). Power addicts absolutely – more than money, sex, wine or drugs or even all four combined! Power is the first and final refuge of the divinely appointed. Divinely apportioned Power is their reason for being. Unmodulated Power. In the Fundamentalist world everyone is imbued with the Divine Power and is beholden to no one other than the divine source of that power. In the necessarily secular world of We the People – we are beholden to ourselves and our brethren for our rights and powers.

In the world of We the People cartoons and satires humble us and remind us what responsibilities we bear in being the universal repositories of all rights and powers a priori. In the Fundamentalist world – if God can be a joke then what am I? Such is the wretchedness of the blessed.

The Cartoon Terror, The War of Terror on Cartoons or the War against Terrorism – no matter how you view it – is not war of civilizations or a war for oil or a war about economic hegemony – or even a war between conservatives and liberals.

It is a systematic ravaging of the secular locus of universal rights by the powerful fundamentals of divine rights.

This is why elections, eavesdropping, environment and equality do not matter. They are all secular mirrors reflecting the nakedness of divine power. They are challenges to the Gods that choose the powerful – they are blasphemers.

We the People (warts and all!) are under attack. The light of the enlightenment is to be extinguished because it dared to shine that light on the apple of knowledge. Are we to be banished from Eden again?

I for one, refuse.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Problems versus Challenges

Some time ago, problems went extinct. A devastating wave of optimism swept in Challenges and having no natural predators they soon overwhelmed the world of problems. The assault was so pervasive and aggressive that the slow and at time graceful problems were wiped out en masse.

Problems were an ancient race of phenomena. They manifested themselves as troubles that this world faced from time to time and were quite appropriately dealt with; with concern, gravity and deep analysis. The ecology they thrived in was called context and it was an ecology of great richness, complexity and history. It was also a demanding ecology that required of it’s inhabitants that they be informed and educated, aware and empathetic. Such a world is a world full of questions. But a world full of questions is bad for the economy – they make people think.

Purveyors of the economy do not like thought as that contains within it the option of not participating in choice. The economy depends on people making choices – not on people opting out of making choices or worse still coming up with their own.

Under the guise of ushering in an era of easy happiness – challenges were slipped in. They were said to be more optimistic – they needed only to be overcome – it was just a question of will and a bit of shrewdness perhaps. And therein lay the infection – just waiting for a host to burrow into and devastate. For, while problems carried within themselves the seeds of their own resolution – challenges are by their very nature a slap in the face; a gauntlet thrown down. They are to be confronted and overcome by sheer force of will. It is a confrontation – not to be resolved – but to be split in two: winner – loser. Or cleverly avoided and left behind in the pious optimism that in being avoided they have ceased to exist.

Unfortunately challenges defeated and challenges spurned do not cease to be. They infect you by becoming a permanent condition of conflict. You have always to be exercising that force of will and the strategy of escape; else you become the infected; the hunted; the loser. The challenge cannot survive without it’s host – it needs you; the challenged, to stay alive. Only when you die does the challenge die. This is appropriately apocalyptic but it is also economy friendly. As long as you must exercise the force of will and the strategy of avoidance you have to make choices – anything to try and get away from the challenge of having to deal with challenges – So much snake oil to buy.

However the greater tragedy lies in the ever accumulating stockpile of challenges. Like nuclear waste they seep into the environment and cause other organisms to grow sick through mutations and disease. They are quite impossible to store safely – prolonged and excessive use of ‘prozacs’ are proving ineffectual and self-destructive. Challenges refuse to be ignored – they simply return to haunt you in another disguise.

At the macro or social level challenges turn into ghettos. They become a case of the immovable object meeting the irresistible force. They become the North African youth throwing gasoline bombs meeting French police throwing rubber bullets – neither knowing what exactly would constitute the end of the challenge. What does overcoming the challenge look like in such a scenario?

It becomes corporate profit driving out cost from the system – what constitutes victory? What do we do when we have reached the smallest unit of cost? Is the final challenge getting profit from nothing?

The world of challenges is a cynical world. It banishes you to a world without redemption. You either overcome or you are overcome. There is no way of coming to terms with your environment – you cannot opt out of the choice. Pick up the gauntlet or die.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Red State Blue State

Red State, Blue State, South State, North
Ancient nightmares marching forth
Quoting Bibles Flying flags
Armies with their wives in rags
Freedom bartered Freedom sold
Liars praying with hearts of cold
Leaves falling Trees a-rust
Children poisoning their mother’s trust
Water burning Water dead
Empty lives in empty heads
Flickering pictures Holy lies
Drowning out the drowning cries
Of whales, babies and man that dies
Greed rides a horse called Fear
With whipping priests as charioteer
Buying Selling Truth and Love
Lucifer singing; like a Dove
Warriors of peace sing broken songs
Their words twisted from right to wrong
Where good is bad and lies are good
Freedom of Spirit is Spirit on Wood
Seventy two virgins on the Right Hand of God
Preying upon lives unshod
Souls drowning in Wine and Gold
Dying of thirst lo and behold!
The Life of Man is being forfeit
On borrowed coin and surfeit
Cowards beat the drums of War
Mothers wait to hear the door
Of Kings open to be told
Why their sons must die in Cold
“To pay the Piper” proclaims the King
“To serve the Lord” the angels sing
“To gain the glory” the veiled ones scream
“To keep them safe” the Soldiers dream
“To hide the Evil” the poet whispers
“To save Freedom” sing court jesters
Killing fields Lies flowering
Strange storms Devil empowering
Freedom’s altar Drowned in Fear
Freedom’s Beacon Burning Spear
Child of Man Drugged and Dying
Heed the voice of Mother crying
Fearing Fear Freedom Starving
The seed of Man disappearing
Blind Gluttony Amortizing