Stand Together

A quote from Eugene Debs: “When we are in partnership and have stopped clutching at each other’s throats; when we’ve stopped enslaving each other, we will stand together, hands clasped, and be friends.”

This assessment is taken from the perspective of viewing culture through the lens of an economy, political power, and labor coming out on the short end of those sticks. Two behaviors need to be stopped — throat clutching and enslavement. Both of these are endemic to the processes of an economy and a political process.

The desired outcome is that of friendship, which is not controlled by structures but is simply personal.

Mixing a structural analysis with a personal result poses difficulties. This can be seen as we continue to work our way through an election result that is too narrow. It will keep the feeling of suffocation and loss of control of both parties at a high level. [Is it time for a communal viewing of Mel Book’s movie, High Anxiety?]

We continue to place great emphasis on our happiness being keyed to external forces. As long as such is the case, the biggies of entitlement and desire will run through the limitation of scarcity with resultant attempts to put one’s self in the position of storing up resources and control of others through the twins — economics and politics.

Our usual approach is to ride them until they drop. At which point, we pick up any just slightly cracked eggs, put them in a shiny new basket, and proceed to repeat the dynamic with a different group of people initially on top but gravitating toward the same types of leaders as before.

What seems to be missing is any personal work that needs doing regardless of the stock market or election results. This is not a solution, but provides a source of energy to not only analyze our macro-setting but take revolutionary actions that refocus economics and politics on what has been called our “general welfare”. Just because the details of a common good continue to be hijacked by false securities doesn’t mean it doesn’t have a salutary part to play in cultural structures that can enhance, while not guaranteeing, personal well-being.

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