27 January 2011

Hedges--Apocalyptic Rage

**Update--An Affirming Flame

Chris Hedges speaking at the University of Toronto--The Death of the Liberal Class.

This is not about our "divisive" politics and about Left and Right...it's about our current despair--we are judged only on our monetary value (we are all commodities). "A mafia economic system." Exploiting both human beings and the natural world until exhaustion and collapse...

"I don't see any way out."

Here is a bit of the sunshine transcribed poorly by me. This is has to do with how we respond to our very physical realities--this from about the 34 minute mark to 36 minute mark:
"legitimate rage is now being expressed through emotionally consistent but absurdest polices...None of it makes any sense but you can't penetrate large sectors of the populace who have been driven into the arms of these movements through despair...and despair is always the engine of totalitarianism; and what's happened...is that when the real world no longer works when your community physically breaks down and brings with it all the attendant problems of sexual abuse, domestic violence, struggle with substance addictions then you seek a world of miracles and magic. And the rage or anger that is engendered when you try to push these people back into the real world, ie, through rational discussion or an attempt to present them with facts, is the anger of people who feel that they are being forced into a world that almost destroyed them. When you go to places like Detroit for instance the end of the world is no longer an abstraction.

And that of course brings with it this love of apocalyptic violence which is fundamental to the ideology of the Christian Right.

The only way...the only avenue that was open to us to save what was left of our anemic democracy was to incorporate these people back into the economic system; to give the disenfranchised working class hope...this chance was lost when we funneled hundreds of billions of dollars back into these speculative concerns."

No ray of sunshine...but the question I think needs to be how to NOT engender Christian Apocalyptics in these communities but rather create new communities that are small and self-sustaining and ones that disdain the current Corporate colonization of our very towns, cities and states; disdaining work for "money" that goes nowhere but to fund this very "external sovereign exception" that we've allowed to dominate our very souls.

(fun stat--almost EIGHT THOUSAND people per DAY have been forced out of their homes over the last two years)

Hedges at U Toronto


Hedges closes with a story from his war correspondent days in Serbia that is heart-rending and yet reveals "an ocean of hope"--please stick with it till the end. He finishes by quoting the end of Auden's poem September 1, 1939--

All I have is a voice
To undo the folded lie,
The romantic lie in the brain
Of the sensual man-in-the-street
And the lie of Authority
Whose buildings grope the sky:
There is no such thing as the State
And no one exists alone;
Hunger allows no choice
To the citizen or the police;
We must love one another or die.

Defenceless under the night
Our world in stupor lies;
Yet, dotted everywhere,
Ironic points of light
Flash out wherever the Just
Exchange their messages;
May I, composed like them
Of Eros and of dust,
Beleaguered by the same
Negation and despair,
Show an affirming flame.

No comments:

Post a Comment