Chasing Our Tails
Our colleague & frequent Carnival mark, Skookum's Spartacus, reflects on the dearth of thoughtful dialogue - and subsequent action - among Lefties populating the blogosphere.
I was reflecting this morning on how few locations there are in blogdom where thoughtful discussion takes place, when I made a note to myself that what mostly passes for chronicling the present madness, is--in both tone and presentation--largely an expression of hysteria. Facts without analysis.Man, does he ever have a point.
...I believe that despite the nightmare we are now immersed in as a result of the Cheney administration, this inability to get their minds around the mindset of their enemies, still--forty years since the John Birch style Minutemen first appeared on the scene--is what hamstrings the believers in the promise of democracy from isolating this social disease. And I am dismayed by the fact that arrogance and ignorance are not solely the domain of the Far Right in our country, but rather so widespread as to suggest that we have yet a long ways to fall before we can put things right.
But then, I think, self-indulgence in bewilderment is part of the problem--not the solution.
And even when there is analysis, action is a rare commodity.
This is something I frequently struggle with. It's easy to point to a flaming building and say "Look! The building's on fire!" But evacuating occupants and grabbing a firehose requires consideration, courage and effort - and serious risks are involved.
It's way past time to take opposition to the next level. Spartacus has much to say about organization and action, and we'd damn well better start paying attention to those who are eager to share their knowledge, experience and vision with those of us who don't know beans about street action.
Bruce Dixon, associate editor of the laser sharp and appropriately cantankerous Black Commentator, agrees. BC's cover story dated July 1st is It's Time to Build a Mass Movement. Read it. Consider it. And let's all realize that political blogging is not an end to itself. Until we begin working on ways of joining each other in action, we will remain at the mercy of the malevolent forces of neoconservative dogma. Each day without a mass movement takes us a step further from freedom.
Dixon's views clearly comport with my own with regard to docile protests. Dixon writes:
Mass movements are against the lawNo more moo-cow demonstrations, please. It's past time to get serious. Do we have what it takes - really - to engage the proponents of fascism? As the dead but indestructible Bill Hicks said: "Life sucks! Get a fucking helmet, alright?" We might consider taking his advice - literally.
Mass movements exist outside electoral politics, and outside the law, or they don’t exist at all. Mass movements are never respecters of law and order. How can they be? A mass movement is an assertion of popular leadership by the people themselves. A mass movement aims to persuade courts, politicians and other actors to tail behind it, not the other way around. Mass movements accomplish this through appeals to shared sets of deep and widely held convictions among the people they aim to mobilize, along with acts or credible threats of sustained and popular civil disobedience.