Thursday, March 31, 2011

When I Was Younger, I Wanted to Start a Revolution

Tonight I was talking with one of my more political friends who is working on campaigns in Louisiana.  We got to talking about our perspectives on governance, and I mentioned that I am more conservative about my ideas on "ruling." Of course, he corrected me by saying "governing." But I meant ruling.

There is a ruling class in this country, one with gobs of money and more consolidated power than is good for any single group to have.  Of course, this group of high net worth individuals makes "suggestions" as well as their own "legal" bribes to people in politics in order to protect their interests.  It's enough to make anyone feel sick.

When I was younger, I was convinced the only way to disrupt business as usual was to have a revolution.  I fully intended to start one myself, (although I prefer a nonviolent version).  So I researched it.  I studied revolution, social movements, and the most effective peaceful political changes I could find.  I studied non-violent protest strategies, violent rebellions, and the pansy reformations in between.

Through it all I became convinced the most important first step in changing something is education. The more people know about something, the more likely they will have an opinion about it.  From there it is a quick step to action. 

The second was to unite powerful demographics and organize them.  The most powerful group are true-believers, particularly religious people.  If you can align your cause with a pillar of a religion, you can convince that group of people to support the cause.  If it was something that overlapped multiple belief systems, you could have an incredibly large group of true-believers all working to address a single issue. 

Say for example you wanted to end abject poverty.  Going through the UN isn't the way.  Organizing religious groups to work with government agencies is.  With millions of people behind the cause, it would happen.  It couldn't not.  There are just too many true believers who if shown a way to change the thing, they would do it.

This brings me to now.  I'm not unconvinced that revolution isn't the way to go because the current situation isn't working.  On the other hand, I'm not sure if I would like what would happen afterwards.    I don't think people are desperate enough to resort to massive action - violent or otherwise (although Oakland and East LA would in a heartbeat). I know that education isn't working because the information is out there and accessible, but most people either aren't aware, or have no idea how to take action. 

Of course, there is always the Fight Club solution - kill the alter ego and blow up some big financial corporations.  I could do with a little jubilee.

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