If you think about it, though, games and social / economic / environmental justice actually go pretty well together. It’s all systems, dude. Iterative systems. Decision trees, or sometimes island constructs within (what our limited-bandwidth brains perceive as) chaos. Circumstances and reactions that lead to a new snapshot of circumstances that lead to even more decisions. And all of it usually tied together with a story. Everything’s connected. The walls between abstract, arbitrary sections of life are imaginary. ☺
No, but seriously? Really fantastic empire you guys have going, here. Absolutely stellar. Also, if you let the robots from MS Word read that previous post / poem it’s HILARIOUS! ☺
I wrote sweet poems. And you all killed me for it.
You can try and pin it on capital, or the religion of capital known as capitalism. Those things are exacerbating factors in the scale of suffering and destruction we are currently seeing, for sure. But it goes back further than that. It goes back to the first surplus in the first basket of food. It’s a human characteristic. I don’t say flaw because, as far as we know, there is no external force keeping score, and our respective suffering at the knowledge of suffering is really the only metric we have for morality or justice. I don’t say flaw because life itself was evolved or designed as a constant struggle for ‘more,’ and because our species evolved to efficiently confront that struggle. And this is why, in all honesty, as much as I want to believe in anarchist principles, as much as I feel that I ‘should’ believe in anarchist principles, as much as I posture and talk the talk and even walk the walk on behalf of anarchist principles, deep down I think the most tranquil version of life is one of firm sociopolitical systems of a size reasonably practically negotiable and sustainable. Because humans have always done this to each other and to other living things. If you would somehow succeed in building a utopia, some worm will come along and destroy the whole thing, or even the idea of it, because it doesn’t wholly belong to them. And thus, in my distrust in the goodness of human beings, or indeed in the very concept of goodness itself as a consistent force in the world, do I reveal myself as a mirror for the villains in some of my favorite stories. If you would have peace or the illusion of safety or progress on a daily basis, you must control the worst among you (where societies go wrong is in who and how they control). Sorry, but everything I’ve ever seen or learned or experienced has taught me that lesson. You can do things another way, where everyone determines their own path and sets their own moral compass (and that is how I live, and how I would choose to live), but with that you accept the knowledge that you will never, as a society, rise above the level of the worst diseases in the minds of your most confused or malevolent contemporaries. People are neither created equally in intellect nor in physical ability, nor are they nurtured or ‘finished’ by their societies toward equal levels of cognitive, emotional, or transcendent awareness. To pretend otherwise can lubricate society and assuage western sensibilities, but it also means that you accept the individual, social, political, economic, and environmental externalities of bodies that generationally remember famine and of minds that can never comprehend the concept of ‘enough.’ You are, individually and collectively, a slave to the worst impulses of the species.
It’s a dangerous time, though. Not just collectively but individually. We’ve still got all the Big Problems(tm) like fascism, climate change, pandemic, capitalism, authoritarianism, etc., but there’s also this pervasive feeling that everyone who has been paying attention, or been up against it for the last few years, is feeling, regardless of station or faction or whatever, of being sort of… untethered? Like, all of the metaphysical iconography of reliability in life has shattered or been rendered insubstantial by the facts of reality or betrayal or circumstance or just plain bad luck. Leaves you feeling carved out, and foolish for ever believing in it in the first place. Leaves you questioning your ability to see clearly in the future. It’s not a good feeling, so if you’re feeling it, you’re not alone and it’s not just you. Like, activists, organizers, civil servants, workers, army mans, and even cops, y’all know the feeling I’m describing, even if you push it to the back of your mind as much as possible (that’s what I fucking do, lol). That feeling like god or life or reality just checked out and let us all down. Evil people made a shaky situation worse, and so many people who stood up to it got shafted real bad, not just in the U.S. but all over the world. And now we’re all being told to forget about it and just pick up and move on, like it didn’t happen. And so many people are being left to do that alone, without any support. It is what it is, though, and we’ve gotta move on, individually and collectively. We gotta live and try to salvage the situation (whatever that means to each of us personally or socially). The one upside I see in all of this is that it’s a really great opportunity to, as they say, separate the bullshit from the ice cream and take inventory of who and what is actually solid in the world. Maybe in the long run, we’ll all see it as more of a favor than a burden. I sure hope so.
There is no middle. The middle is a fiction. There is only conscience and consequence.
Always remember that to steer the ship far is to end up on a different river.
Legislation and the rest of that bullshit isn’t gonna save you from weapons like Pegasus. States, and the political cabals that run them, have one goal in life: to maintain and grow their power. If you get in the way of that, they will do whatever they want to do to you. Laws or morality mean nothing to them. The United States is no exception to this rule. It set the example in the first place, after all.
Representative, electoral democracy has failed because capitalism has strangled it. We are on a collective trajectory toward a time when only political violence can dismantle the power of the oligarchy.
People assume that because you try and do the right thing, or try and control yourself in difficult situations, that you aren’t a monster. We should set the record straight. I am a monster, inside. I’m more twisted up and broken inside than most of you could comprehend. I don’t get angry like normal people. I get Old-Testament-God angry, and I have a long memory. I don’t run around squealing about the evil in the world or trying to do good things because that’s how I feel all the time. I do it because it’s the right thing to do. And I don’t control myself because I fear some external punishment or reprisal. If I hold back it’s for the benefit of the antagonist(s). Never forget that.
I mean, hitherto most generations only had hand-fucking the nasty hole in their kitchen sinks each night to look forward to. Us? While capitalism destroys itself by knocking over socialist governments and destroying the actual biosphere, we get to look forward to our retirement as aged warlords commanding armies of child soldiers who will fight over the basic necessities of life. This is fine. Our betters are very wise. I have been a fool to oppose this plan. I recognize that, now.
No, but, seriously. All I’ve ever known is betrayal. I’m wearing jeans with holes in them that I don’t have the money to replace. I’m wearing glasses that don’t work right because healthcare is for-profit rather than for people. I live in a shitty house I can’t really afford. I’ve spent the last few years fighting off monsters while paragons put knives in my back, and made me into a monster that no one could love. I spent my childhood, and what was left of it, fighting off monsters because a piece of paper said that fools should have the freedom to destroy. I survived, this long, only to be let down again by our glorious system. I’ve died from more malicious lifetimes than most people will ever live. And you think I still give a shit about what happens, to any of us? That’s adorable. Burn. In. Hell. ☺
Let me explain. No. It would take too long. Let me sum up. Capitalism is simply the reorganization of feudalism under scientific, rather than theocratic, means. Like feudalism, capitalism requires both ever-expanding extraction and systemic violent coercion in order to survive. Capitalism is a totalitarian system in disguise, that is antithetical to democracy. Capitalism is built on asymmetric power relationships. It is built on violence. All right-wing politics facilitate this. You may select, both as a consumer of products or politics, from the products or ideas offered by the oligarchy. If you attempt to select something else, or if you refuse to offer up what is demanded by the system, you are punished with violence (be that structural, legal, or physical). Fascism is the extreme totalitarian compensatory reaction to increasing attempts to reform (and ultimately defeat) the system of capitalism. Thus, no democracy will ever be safe from totalitarianism, or from fascism, so long as capitalism exists. We must embrace a socialist paradigm. Not a faux entitlement system built upon continued corporate dominance. Genuine socialism with the widespread deconstruction of hierarchical power relationships. Capitalism must ultimately be destroyed. And, if we choose not to do this in the short term, the climate will do it for us, taking our species and many others with it.