Sunday, January 02, 2011

Us is the Word!

Through my interaction within a community far, far away, I discovered the remarkable Christine Kane and her thoughts concerning how we should stop "hoping" and start "creating". I believe I first heard of the "Word of the Year" from Christine, but for me it was Fine Line, a friend and trusted member of that community, who turned Christine's thoughts into action. Although I do not "officially" participate in the "Word of the Year" program, that does not mean I do not think it is a wonderful idea. On the contrary, anything that will empower us has my support and praise. So last year I gave some thought to this idea and decided on chosing a word for myself. To be honest it did not take much thought to come up with my word, as it seems to have somehow chosen me. Now it is "Oh Eleven" and a word has chosen me once again.

The word I have chosen for the new year is the same word I chose for 2010, and the same word that began being such a large part of my life back in 1999. It is the same word that has remained in my thoughts and in my notes ever since. That word is us, not to be confused with the abbreviation of our country. We are the key to solving many of the problems we now face. As our societies dissolve into a global pool of uncertainty, I can not emphasize enough how important we are in the equation. To quote Christine Kane, "Be Creative. Be Conscious. Be Courageous." So to kick off "Oh Eleven", I choose a hero of mine to emphasize the importance of us as the new year begins. We have a rough path ahead, and let us hope that reason will conquer ignorance, and we will come to understand the power we possess.

The idea of saviors has been built into the entire culture, beyond politics. We have learned to look to stars, leaders, experts in every field, thus surrendering our own strength, demeaning our own ability, obliterating our own selves. But from time to time, Americans reject that idea and rebel.

These rebellions, so far, have been contained. The American system is the most ingenious system of control in world history. With a country so rich in natural resources, talent, and labor power the system can afford to distribute just enough wealth to just enough people to limit discontent to a troublesome minority.

In a highly developed society, the Establishment cannot survive without the obedience and loyalty of millions of people who are given small rewards to keep the system going: the soldiers and police, teachers and ministers, administrators and social workers, technicians and production workers, doctors, lawyers, nurses, transport and communications workers, garbage men and firemen. These people-the employed, the somewhat privileged-are drawn into alliance with the elite. They become the guards of the system, buffers between the upper and lower classes. If they stop obeying, the system falls.

The Coming Revolt of the Guard by Howard Zinn


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