Human Beings Aren’t A Virus; Capitalism and Civilization are the Cancer

By Natan Rebelde (March 24, 2020)

Many people are currently becoming more accepting of the reality that there’s something very, very wrong with our way of life. Declarations such as “humans are the virus!” are indeed misguided, but I would caution against knee-jerk accusations of eco-fascism. Of course, fascists utilizing ecological realities to forward their agendas will likely make use of such rhetoric (or more likely, point blame at groups of “undesirables” such as migrants or BIPOC), but many people making such observations are simply feeling out uncomfortable realities of our culture that they haven’t previously fully faced.

It is our obligation and responsibility to point out the usefulness of such misguided analyses to structures of power, and to demonstrate convincingly how and why it’s not human beings themselves that are the problem, but rather, one very specific dominator culture that has risen to global dominance (so is easy to confuse and conflate with humanity itself): industrial “civilization” and consumer capitalism (and attendant settler-colonialism). Capitalism is the globally dominant form of industrial civilization, so I think it’s accurate enough to put our focus there, though I believe industrial civilization in any form will have similar results, even if the State controls the means of production rather than private capitalists (aka State “socialism”/”communism”).

For the vast majority of our natural existence as a species on this planet, we have not lived in ways that systematically denude and destroy our land bases. Our very existence on an evolutionary scale is evidence of that. And ecology informs us that species and cultures that violate ecological parameters and limitations are fundamentally and terminally unsustainable and self-eliminating. This is the process our culture currently finds itself in the midst of.

ANYways… human beings are not a virus. We are not a plague on the Earth. So-called “civilization” and consumer capitalism are carcinogenic, causing normal cells to behave abnormally, and detrimentally to the larger body. And this cancer has metastasized to encompass most of the body. But maybe give those coming to these realizations a break, and see if, when offered a more nuanced perspective and critique, they grow into it. Pointing fingers and screaming “ECOFASCISM!” is unlikely to have a productive result. That said, bash the actual fash, by all means.

Greta Thunberg’s Speech Will Be Iconic

By S. (September 25, 2019)

I’ve always wondered how speeches become iconic and why some speeches are remembered. Would I recognize a famous speech when I first heard it? Did those people who first heard “ask not what your country can do for you” or “I have dream” understand the historic import?

I remember “Mr Gorbachev, tear down that wall”. It felt like empty political posturing.

George HW Bush’s “read my lips” speech is remembered ironically.

I don’t remember anything from Clinton or Bush Jr.

I’m also surprised that I can’t remember any of Obama’s speeches. Perhaps that is because Obama’s rhetorical skills were undermined by his staunch defense of untenable status quos.

I think Ms. Thunberg’s speech is going to make history not just because she had a great platform with this event, but because she eloquently and passionately said what so many of us were thinking. It’s a pure message, unencumbered by real politik or compromises. She truly spoke truth to power (it’s regrettable how much that phrase has been over used) and I think we should echo her words far and wide.

The Liberation of Creativity: Making a Better World at the Corvallis Solidarity Fair

By Joseph Orosco (July 2, 2019)

This year marked the 8th anniversary of the Solidarity Fair in Corvallis, Oregon. Started as a project by members of the Corvallis Industrial Workers of the World and Occupy Corvallis, the Solidarity Fair is a once a year event that brings together groups and individuals from the Willamette Valley that are interested in grassroots social transformation through social, economic, and environmental justice struggles.


One of the hallmarks of the Fair have been what is called ‘movement conversations’: facilitated discussions dealing with issues such as community organizing, labor struggles, envisioning more just futures, etc. This year, the Fair sponsored two discussions for Fair-goers: Stop Making Capitalism and Make a Better World.

Stop Making Capitalism was a particularly well-attended conversation focused around some of the following questions:


  • How do we resist power-over dynamics by building power-with each other?
  • In our workplaces, neighborhoods, communities, schools: What are examples of resistance right now? (i.e. walkouts, strikes)
  • What leverage do we already have and what leverage can we create?
  • How can we encourage the conversation to go beyond the local to broader connections?

solidarity 2

As co-directors of the Anarres Project, Tony Vogt and I were tasked as being the facilitators for the second discussion about imagining a better world. We met beforehand and drew up a few questions to help structure the dialogue. Our conversations was built around these ideas:


  • Are there examples of people coming together to form a better world in your community, region, union, movement, neighborhood? (Examples of not just resistance but alternative building)


  • In building a better world, what sort of continuity with the current world would you want to keep and build on, improve, reform? Does a better world have to be built by rejecting the status quo or can it be built within the shell of the old?


  • Who are the allies in building the better world you imagine and why are they allies?


Our conversation was a bit smaller than Stop Making Capitalism: there were about 10 individuals, ranging from Boomers to Generation Z (many of them members of Democratic Socialists of America).


Examples of Alternative Building

Someone started by bringing up the example here of the movement in Oregon to legislate universal health care. The idea behind this struggle, it was explained, was to create social programs that would take care of residents, freeing up money from other programs devoted to incarceration, for instance. A result of this would be to renew trust in the state as an institution that works for the people.


Other individuals immediately questioned whether building trust in the state was something to spend time and energy on. They offered examples of creating worker and housing cooperatives, instead.


When we asked the group to think of any projects in existence that inspired them in alternative building the Rojava Revolution immediately came to the mind of several. It seems clear that this example is to younger folk what the Zapatistas were to previous generations. Several mentioned they were inspired by the idea of municipal democracy and working at local city levels (Bookchin libertarian muncipalism ideals filtered through the news of Rojava)


Continuity with the Old

When asked whether building a better world had to be premised on the idea of something like a slate cleaning revolution that would wipe away all vestiges of the old world, or on reform that would improve on the deficiencies of the old world, the discussion participants turned right away to the question of the market. How would a new and better world distribute goods and services?


Most seemed to agree that an economy driven by profit had to be eliminated, but were not sure that a market economy had to be profit motivated. Was it possible to have a social welfare capitalism as a goal for a better world?


Participants quickly realized that any projects for envisioning a better world had to deal with the limit of ecological crisis. No economy was going to work that did not factor in resource depletion and climate change. The conversation quickly changed to the realization that there were going to be many lifestyle sacrifices—there was long discussion about what it was going to be like to not be able to get certain produce and food items any longer.


Privatization of creativity

I noted that it seemed like the question of lifestyle sacrifice always seemed to haunt leftist discussions about building alternatives.  I suggested that this was a turn we should think about avoiding because it seems demobilizing and creates a politics of fear or desperation. Instead, I said we should think about what we might gain by building alternative worlds.


Participants agreed that thinking about what luxuries we might lose in leaving behind the status quo was a deception. Someone pointed out that the idea of a luxury in today’s world is usually something valuable or pleasurable that we want because of the hollowness that capitalism produces in our lives. People started to imagine that in a world without capitalism we might have more free time to spend with family and friends. Tony reminded everyone that a central feature of the US labor movement had been taking control over leisure time—the eight hour work day and the weekend. We pondered what kind of abilities and capacities might be unleashed if people did not have to work so much just in order to survive. One young person pointed out that there is a widespread view that someone capitalism is the economic system that drives innovation and progress, “What it really does is privatize creativity into the minds of a few”.

We wrapped up our 45 minute conversation on that point and left everyone to ponder what sorts of allies were out there for the kind of struggle we imagined.






The Problem with Capitalism Isn’t Work–It’s the Lack of Freedom and Meaning

By Harsha Walia (October 1, 2018)

I’ve been thinking on something I have been hearing a lot this past year.

The critique of capitalism isn’t that we work.

Capitalism sucks because it creates conditions where labour is extracted, where we dont control our means of production, we are alienated from the process of production under a proft-driven wage economy, and that not all work is valued equally.

Autonomy and control of labour is the key here, not that we labour at all.

Living literally requires labour; non capitalist and sustainable economies are incredibly work-intensive (food production, child rearing etc). If you have ever spent time listening to elders speak about their early lives, their days were full of work – harvesting, washing, gathering, building, walking sunup to sundown. The whole point of the capitalist dream is that money replaces the need to work for rich people.

I think this precision matters because I think its dangerous that many people articulate that an ideal world will mean less work – no it won’t. It will mean more purposeful work where we control what we produce and where labour is equally valued within communities where kinship relations define us more than our work.


Bezo’s Plan for Space Intensifies Misery on Earth

By Arun Gupta (July 20, 2018)

Consider this.
Jeff Bezo’s wealth has surpassed $150 billion.
There are at least 11,600 homeless people in King County, where Amazon is located.
Amazon recently strong-armed the Seattle City Council to repeal a small $275 annual head tax on large corporations to address the soaring homelessness in the wealthiest city in the Western Hemisphere.

Bezos sees no use to spending his fortune on planet Earth. His explicit plan is to sell $1 billion of stock a year to colonize space

“I get increasing conviction with every passing year, that Blue Origin, the space company, is the most important work that I’m doing. Blue Origin is expensive enough to be able to use that fortune.”

A grumpy old German bro described all of this nearly two centuries ago:

“Accumulation of wealth at one pole is, therefore, at the same time accumulation of misery, agony of toil slavery, ignorance, brutality, mental degradation, at the opposite pole.”

If you’re not a Marxist, you’re not paying attention.


Silvia Federici: Wages for Housework and #MeToo

Silvia Federici is a leading Marxist-feminist scholar. Her work exposes how capitalism maintains itself by refusing to pay for the cost of its own reproduction (such as the emotional and care work that goes into producing human beings).  This talk was co sponsored by the Coalition of Graduate Employees, Anarres Project, and the Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at OSU.

Capitalism Isn’t Collapsing…Yet

By Arun Gupta (February 6, 2018)

If you are hoping capitalism is going to implode because the markets tanked today, don’t hold your breath.

The drop on Monday, February 5, in percentage terms was far from historic. If you look at the first picture, a six-month chart of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, it looks like it fell off a cliff. 1175 points sounds big, but it’s only a 4.6% loss.

Now look at the third picture. Today’s loss is nowhere close to the 20 biggest drops in history, the lowest of which was about 7%. I saw one report that said today’s drop barely cracked the top 300 in terms of single-worst daily losses.

The second picture tells the real story. This chart starts in 1987, right before the Black Monday crash that obliterated 22% of market value in one day. And it goes up to the present, a 31-year span. At the far left, you can barely see the blip that was the 1987 crash.

Since tangerine dumpster fire squeaked into the Oval Office by his tiny hands, the DJIA has jumped 45%. That’s a yuuuge run in just 14 months. But look at the middle of the 31-year chart, starting in January 1995. That’s the beginning of the “irrational exuberance” phase of the Clinton-Summers-Rubin-Greenspan market. It peaked in March 2000.

During that five-year stretch the Dow Jones nearly tripled, gaining almost 200%. In the same period, the Nasdaq soared nearly 600%. That 45% gain suddenly looks like a lot less.

So while the Trump bump happened fast, this type of rise is not unusual in the era of neoliberalism and financialization that began with Reagan. The explosion of financial instruments like options, futures, derivatives — which play an important role for capitalists to hedge risk — increase stock price movements, whether up or down, as do trading algorithms.

Financialization is marked by bubbles and crises, so it’s natural to conclude one is inflating right now. And capitalism can be thought of as a bubble going back centuries. But there isn’t a sign of a catastrophic bubble on the horizon. There have been lots of predictions of a global bubble over the last decade: property values, emerging markets, government debt, energy prices, but there are no impending signs of disaster as there was in the later stages of the last two major bubbles: the internet/tech bubble and the housing bubble. The internet bubble wiped out about $6 trillion in value, while the financial crisis cost something like $22 trillion. The first caused a mild recession that was worsened by the 9/11 attacks, and the second, well, the global economy still hasn’t recovered from that. Though the .01% engineered it to increase their wealth at the expense of the rest of humanity and the planet.

It’s also worth remembering that these bubbles didn’t pop overnight. The Internet bubble took about 18 months to go from peak to trough, while the housing bubble, in the stock market at least, had a decline of nearly two years. This downturn is not even two weeks old.

Currently, the only obvious bubble is cryptocurrencies, and that’s popped. It’s shed 65% of its value in two months, around $550 billion. All cryptocurrencies combined are now worth barely $300 billion. While everyone should enjoy some schadenfreude at the expense of the libertarian cryptoassholes who’ve taken a beating in their Bitcoin as they dream of a disruptive currency that would eliminate the state, an $850 billion bubble is a dot in a $76 trillion global economy.

As for what will happen, I don’t have a crystal ball. But if you look at the bottom of the first chart, there are two indicators from February 5 (relative strength indicator and stochastics) that have plunged, which indicate the market is in an oversold condition. It can keep going down, but the Dow is unlikely to drop much further. In technical terms, the 200-day moving average is around 22,800, and at that point a lot of big banks, technical traders, quants, hedge funds will pour in money seeking short-term profits. That alone would likely stabilize the markets. And lo and behold, the next day, Tuesday, February 6, the markets jumped, erasing half the losses of the previous day.

There are numerous problems with the U.S. economy — such as low savings rates, widespread poverty, stagnation in wage growth, extreme bullishness and complacency in the markets, perception of inflation affecting the bond market, the budget deficit and government debt — but these are nothing new or severe enough to trigger a general economic crisis. There is no existential problem evident that means this downturn is the start of a gut-wrenching years-long plummet on the scale of the internet and housing bubbles that spilled over into the global economy. Most likely this will be forgotten about in a few weeks.

The only prediction I’ll make is my analysis will upset left-wing collapsitarians who pin their political hopes on the deus ex machina of a breakdown in capitalism because they lack any hope in being able to achieve progress through collective mass action.


“Is your friend pretty?” #Metoo in the Context of Capitalism and Racism

By Alexander Reid Ross, Teka Lark, and Mark Naison (November 28, 2017)

Several Anarres Project regular contributors recently reflected on the uprising against sexual harassment/assault/abuse in the political and entertainment worlds.  Together, they tied the issue to broader concerns about socialization under patriarchy, the imperatives of capitalism, and white supremacy.


Alexander Reid Ross:

The more celebrities exposed as inveterate pervs, the more we recognize that all men have all been implicated in this patriarchal society. The choice is to learn and work to overturn it or to remain taciturn and complicit in constant oppression.


Teka Lark:

Sexism in the workplace I know by many is viewed as a little thing. It isn’t.

I have a friend who is a man. He is originally from France, moved to LA and is now in Iowa. He can live wherever he wants. He is a translator for corporations based in Europe. He speaks three languages fluently, in addition to English. Companies fly him to NY, pay for his hotel and his drinks when they need him in person.

I have another friend in NY area. Same credentials. She lives in a basement that she rents from an 80-year-old woman who needs the money. My friend needs cheap rent. She sometimes translates for the courts.

I asked my male friend why my woman friend can’t get hired. He looked at me and said, “She is a woman.”

He said in Europe they don’t like hiring women, they are a distraction. They want to drink, cheat on their wives, and they don’t want to hear about rights. They deal in millions of dollars a day and they want to do what they want and they are going to do what they want. They want to hire WHITE men. He then said, but it isn’t so bad. If you are pretty, you can marry a rich man. Is your friend pretty?

Sexism relegates women to the “choices” of low wage jobs and/or entertainment.

Ending sexism matters.
Ending racism matters.
Ending capitalism matters.


Mark Naison:

Most men, and that includes me, were socialized from an early age to view the pursuit of fame, power and wealth as a way of eroticizing themselves, of making them more attractive to women. It is shockingly easy to go from that position to viewing sexual access to women as a perk, as a reward for professional achievement. Most men don’t act on that impulse, but virtually all have heard other men talk that way. And to be honest, when men talk that way, I have rarely heard other men say “don’t talk that shit around me. Women aren’t an extension of male power.” Maybe they will now. Time will tell. This isn’t only about men and women. It is about how men communicate with and explain themselves to other men.

Property, Policing, and Protestantism: Why the Right is Powerful and the Left is So Weak

By Arun Gupta (November 20, 2017)

The reason the American Right is so powerful is because it is fundamentally defined by whiteness, capitalism, and patriarchy, and these concepts are reproduced through three mutually reinforcing institutions: Property, Policing, and Protestantism.


I am leaving aside many nuances because I am interested in why the right has such extraordinary ideological cohesion and the ability to radically alter the state, consciousness, and society repeatedly over the last 50 years.


Let me back up a second. There is a widespread belief in American politics that the Left is similar to or the mirror image of the right. I often see people asking, why doesn’t the left have a media, political, intellectual, training infrastructure like the right does? Or why can’t the left take over the Democratic Party like the Tea Party and Trump did? Or why doesn’t the left have its own Bannon?


Here’s the difference: right-wing extremists such as Evangelicals and those who are against immigration do not oppose the free-market conservative doctrine of extreme wealth, deprivation, and inequality. In fact, Evangelicals often justify it theologically through the “Prosperity Gospel.” The Tea Party is also fine with billionaires owning everything because the existence of billionaires proves the meritocracy works. I have had Tea Partiers tell me such. (I am leaving out fascists because while growing and dangerous they are still a tiny slice of the population.)

The right also sees the police as the bedrock of the social order, particularly through enforcing property over life and defending racial and class segregation, which is also carried out through the market, zoning, and public education.


Liberals are pro-capitalism and particularly pro-Wall Street, Hollywood, and Silicon Valley. So liberals hate the Left more than they hate the Right because the defining quality of the Left is those who are anti-capitalist.


The Left, however, lacks an ideological and material apparatus on the scale of property, policing, and Protestantism to produce and reproduce itself. At best, it has universities and unions, which are under severe political and economic attack. There are identity-based communities, but these are extremely weak without a clear ideology to define and unify, such as the platform of the Movement for Black Lives developed last year.Without socialist-style politics informing identity, it becomes neoliberal, like the feminism of Hillary Clinton. Clintonianism is really misogyny in disguise as her entire political career is defined by impoverishing, jailing, bombing, and killing Black and Brown and poor women.


So if you ever wonder why the Left is so weak, it is because it lacks anything like police, property, and Protestantism. And if you wonder what is the historical task at hand, it is building these types of mutually reinforcing institutions that reproduce organically and provide the material, cultural, and ideological basis for nurturing a left politics based on collective ownership, liberation, solidarity, justice, and freedom.


I am leaving a lot out of this analysis. For example, when talking about policing, I am referring to all domestic police forces and private security contractors, including all the federal police agencies. But the military to me is more complicated. It does reinforce whiteness, patriarchy, and capitalism, but it has also been a site to advance some social equality of traditionally oppressed groups. The military can also be a site of political radicalization because it draws from across society, as with the Vietnam War, and to a lesser degree, the Iraq War.


It would take a book to explore this idea properly, but I want to offer some brief thoughts to start a conversation.


What the Flag Means to Me

By. S. Brian Wilson (July 3, 2017)

Originally published here by S. Brian Willson

I was probably seven years old before it really sunk in that everybody in my town was not celebrating my birthday on July 4. It was an exciting day with parades, picnics, fireworks and, in my case, special birthday parties and gifts. I lived much of my young life with the extra boost of having been born on the day that our earliest political framers signed the Declaration of Independence, an historical act of defiance against monarchial colonial rule from distant England. I remember proudly carrying the U.S. American flag in one of the July 4th parades in my small, agricultural town in upstate New York. And for years I felt goosebumps looking at Old Glory waving in the breeze during the playing of the national anthem or as it passed by in a parade. How lucky I was to have been born in the greatest country in the history of the world, and blessed by God to boot. Such a blessing, such a deal!

It wasn’t until many years later, while reading an issue of the armed forces newspaper Stars and Stripes in Vietnam, that I began thinking and feeling differently about the flag and what it represents. There was a story about an arrest for flag burning somewhere in the United States. I had recently experienced the horror of seeing numerous bodies of young women and children that were burned alive in a small Delta village devastated by napalm. I imagined that since the pilots had “successfully” hit their targets, they were feeling good and probably had received glowing reports that would bode well in their military record for promotions. I wondered why it was okay to burn innocent human beings 10,000 miles from my home town, but not okay to burn a piece of cloth that was symbolic of the country that had horribly napalmed those villagers. Something was terribly wrong with the Cold War rhetoric of fighting communism that made me question what our nation stood for. There was a grand lie, an American myth, that was being fraudulently preserved under the cloak of our flag.

It took me years to process this clear cognitive dissonance between the rhetoric of my cultural teachings and the reality of my own personal experiences. I had to accept that, either there was serious distortion in how I was interpreting my personal realities, or the cultural rhetoric was terribly distorted. Hmm. A dilemma! If I accepted the former, I could relax and feel good about being an “American.” If I accepted the latter, I would experience a serious identity crisis, perhaps a nervous breakdown. But no matter how hard I tried, I could not ignore what my own conscience was continually telling me.

I began a serious reflection that included careful study of U.S. and world history. When I was a teenager living near Seneca Indian reservations in western New York State I occasionally heard Seneca acquaintances utter “jokes” about how the “White man speaks with forked tongue.” We thought it funny at the time. But then I discovered how my country really was founded. There were hundreds of nations comprised of millions of human beings–yes, human beings–living throughout the land before our European ancestors arrived here in the 1600s. The U.S. government signed over 400 treaties with various Indigenous nations and violated every one of them. And over time these original peoples were systematically eliminated in what amounted to the first genuine American holocaust.

When I reread the Declaration of Independence I noted words I hadn’t been aware of before: “He [the King of Great Britain] has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.” Honest history reveals that the very land upon which our founding fathers began this new experiment in freedom had been taken by violence and deceit, ironically using the same diabolical methods the framers accused of those already living here. It became obvious after extensive reading that my European ancestors did not believe that Indigenous Americans were human beings worthy of respect, but despicable, non-human creatures, worthy only of extermination. The pre-Columbus population of Indigenous in the Western Hemisphere is estimated to have been at least 100 million (8-12 million north of the Rio Grande). By 1900 this population had been reduced to about 5 percent of its former size. An Indigenous friend of mine, a Seneca man who had served the U.S. military in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam, and then after retiring, discovered his ancestral roots as a native American, once remarked to me: “I call the American flag ‘Old Gory,’ the red representing the blood, and the white, the bones, of my murdered ancestors.”

When adding to our first holocaust the damage done to African cultures through forcefully seizing human beings to be slaves in order to build our early agricultural and industrial base, and the carnage from nearly 300 U.S. overt military and thousands of covert interventions in the Twentieth Century to acquire access to markets and resources on our selfish terms, we see there are actually three holocausts that have enabled the “glorious American civilization” to be what it is today. It is now estimated that Africa lost 50 million of its population to the slave trade, at least two-thirds of whom were killed resisting capture or died during the horrors of transit; an estimated 20 to 30 million people in the Third World have been killed as a result of U.S. interventions. Note that when other peoples all over the globe have attempted to emulate the spirit of our Declaration of Independence (a proclamation of self-determination), such as Vietnam explicitly did in 1945, our government not only has turned a deaf ear, but has done everything in its power short of dropping Atomic bombs to destroy their efforts to obtain independence. This is the foundation upon which we have built “America.” Quite the karma!

The founding of our Republic was conducted in secrecy by an upper class who insisted on a strong national government that could assure a successful but forceful clearing of western lands, enabling the safe settlement and economic development of previously inhabited Indigenous territory. Our Founding Fathers did not represent the common people. Some historians believe that if the Constitution itself had been subjected to a genuine vote of all the people it would have been resoundly defeated. Subsequently, what evolved is a political system run by plutocrats who perpetuate an economic system that protects the interests of those who finance their campaigns (a form of bribery). The U.S. government is a democracy in name only. Never have we had a government that seriously addresses the plight of the people, whether it be workers, minorities, women, the poor, etc. Whatever has been achieved in terms of rights and benefits for these constituencies, i.e., the people, has been struggled for against substantial repression, and the constant threat the gains will be subsequently lost. Intense pressures are applied by the selfish oligarchy which seeks ever increased profits, rarely, if ever, considering the expense to the health of the majority of people, their local cultures, and the ecology.

What the West calls capitalism is nothing like what Adam Smith had in mind with his views of decentralized networks of small entrepreneurs working in harmony with the needs and forces of others in their own communities. What we have is a savage system of centrally institutionalized greed that is unable to generalize an equitable way of life for the majority of people here in the U.S., or in the rest of the world. It requires incredible exploitation of human and other natural resources all over the globe with the forcible protection of military and paramilitary forces financed or sanctioned by governments. It thrives on its own sinister version of welfare where the public financially guarantees–through tax loopholes, subsidies, contracts, and outright bailouts–the profitable success of the major corporations and financial institutions, especially, but not exclusively, in the military-industrial complex. Additionally, our monopoly capitalism defines efficiency by totally ignoring the true costs of its production and distribution. It conveniently forgets the huge ecological and human exhaustion costs (both being our true wealth). If these costs were included, the system would be finished in a second. The reality, upon honest examination, is that the economic system we call capitalism, now neoliberal, global capitalism, is cruelly based on a very fraudulent set of assumptions that justify massive exploitation. The reality, upon honest examination, is that our political system was founded, and has been maintained to this very day by substantive plutocracy, not democracy.

So when I see the flag and think of the Declaration of Independence, instead of the United States of America, I see the United Corporations of America; I see the blood and bones of people all over the globe who have been dehumanized, then exterminated by its imperialism; and I see a symbol that represents a monstrous lie maintained by excessive, deadly force. It makes me feel sick, and ashamed. And I know that my opinions being expressed here will not be popular, even among some of my closest friends. But I cannot ignore the reality as I now understand it. I believe we are living one of the most incredible lies in history, covered over by one of the most successful campaigns of public rhetoric, ignoring empirical reality. It is truly amazing! I hope that one day we will end our willful ignorance and be able to see our transgressions, and beg, on our knees, for forgiveness, and then wail as we begin to feel the incredible pain and anguish we have caused the world as well as our own bodies, minds, souls, and culture.



Minding P’s and Q’s

by Tony Vogt

The cap in Capitalism

worn backwards

might stop the whole show.


The hag in Hagiography

simmers stew

from the bones of saints.

Says, “We’re either all

going to heaven or

we ain’t.”

(click the title to read more!)
Continue reading “Minding P’s and Q’s”