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A Pagan's Blog


That ‘Other’ May Day

posted by Gus diZerega

UPDATE: Parts of this post have been polished and clarified.  

May Day is first and foremost a celebration of life in all
the earth.  But historically it has
also been a celebration of those whose work sustains the modern world.  Then as now, those whose work sustain
civilization were oppressed by parasites who grew fat and sleek through the
efforts and creativity of others. Those creative others they treated and
continue to treat  as expendable inferiors.   Some people
are rich because they deserve it.  Others, the parasites, are rich
because, as they admit, they are
smart and vicious enough to try and use money to fill an infinitely deep hole in their empty
souls.  They
even endorse class war.   Bill Moyers, one of the
all-time greats in American journalism put it very well.   I want to offer what is admittedly a rant, but a well supported one, in
respectful memory of this May Day tradition as well.


To do so properly we have to understand we are governed by
the least productive and least creative among us in both politics and
business.  The productive and
creative are too busy by and large to play the sordid organizational games
these men and occasional women have mastered.  With very few exceptions, are masters of manipulation,
deceit, and distraction. 

Even so, it’s been a tough few months for America’s ruling
oligarchy and its faithful servants.  Elected on so many false promises I have given up counting them, Barack Obama
seems to feel his best operating plan him is to kiss up to his enemies and kick
those who believed his promises lies in the shins.  Or somewhat higher.  Now that we have the worst oil spill in
history, possibly world history, he is stil  following his urge to placate his enemies including the
“drill baby drill” Alaskan imbecile.   Even so, now both he  and the corporate sociopaths he serves are looking pretty incompetent.  (More here.)   As indeed they should.

Among the more important lies Obama told us was his pledge
for more open government, a basic requirement for democracy.  Now he has shown himself to not only do
all he can to prevent the truth of Bush era law-breaking from coming out (let’s
put it behind us) he wants to prosecute people who blew the whistle on
Republican lawlessness.   (Let’s not put that behind us.)  These priorities are not only dishonest, they are depraved.

Meanwhile Obama’s war on Afghanistan continues killing
Afghans and Americans to no good end.  Picking up where Bush left off, dead people matter not at all when the
alternative is being criticized by Rebubbalicans.  The man now has buckets of innocent blood on his hands,
blood needlessly spilled and with no end in sight.

Warning of fiscal crises brought about by endless war and
tax cuts for the parasites, he proposes putting domestic programs on the
chopping bloc, programs that benefit Americans, while increasing the defense
budget that served us so well against box cutters.  But GE and Halliburton and other parts of his true
constituency will be pleased.  Our
‘defense’ budget is now far bigger than during the Cold War. 

Meanwhile the Republican Rebubbalican Confederate
party is showing its true colors as the political abode for the most degenerate
portion
of our nation,  who are building mini police states  in Arizona and Virginia.  And
hoping to build more in Oklahoma and a host of other states.  I am struck with the fact that these
“patriots” are willing to guarantee oppression and abuse of brown Americans but
do not target the large agribusinesses whose hiring practices draw illegal
immigrants north.  The poor and
needy are enticed north with the promise of jobs, rendered even more powerless
by depraved laws, while the corporate aristocrats who lure them continue to
live in luxury. 

Then there are the
corporate aristocrats who wax fat of the blood of other hard working
people.   Mines have
collapsed, killing workers needlessly while funneling millions to the
oligarchy.  Those deaths proved as
Don Blankenship observed, mine safety rules are as
silly as global warming
.
 Only not in the way he intended. 
Blankenship is the thug and
possible criminal who runs Massey Energy.


Similarly, we are
discovering that oil giant BP, served so loyally by both parties, opposed
safety rules and rejected measures already in use elsewhere that would likely
have made this spill impossible.  Halliburton, is involved as well. 
Having previously done so much damage to us in Iraq (see  here  and here  and here)  while making millions for Dick Cheney,
Halliburton is once again living down to its image.  There is no better candidate for the corporate
death
penalty


Then there is the fraud and malfeasance committed by the
Bright Boys in Finance, bright boys who transited effortlessly from serving
themselves under Bush to serving themselves under Obama.  Whether opposing auditing in the
Federal Reserve  or stonewalling and possibly lying under testimony and hiding facts they should legally have disclosed  , these parasites  have done and
are continuing to do great harm to everything but their pocket books.  Whether they are convicted of breaking
the law or are able to weasel out with the aid of corporate lawyers,  political servants secretly undermining
effective action against them, and a compromised court system is yet to become
clear.  What is clear to all but
the high priest economists who provide fancy rationalizations for them is that
they are parasites, frightfully effective ones.

This miserable performance, evidencing incompetence and
dishonesty across the board,  is by
an old ruling elite that has gamed the constitution by capturing both parties
while preventing the rise of alternatives.  We get to choose from moderately inhumane corporatist hacks
among Democrats or far worse corporatist hacks and their theocratic allies with
the Rebubbalicans.  Both are
dominated by ideas that have long since outlived their usefulness, assuming
they had any to begin with.  They
persist by covering for one another when the chips are down, rewarding
incompetents
 and penalizing the competent. 

The future of this country rests on whether the natural
political antibodies this civilization can generate are up to the task of
eliminating this combination of toxic infection and growing senility.

The hope lies in Americans who actually care about the
principles our country was founded on  and on those remaining honest people in government who might still prove that
our new aristocratic plutocracy is subject to the law like everybody else



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Gwyddion9

posted May 1, 2010 at 11:01 pm


I agree. I have become very saddened by President Obama and his actions. I voted for him in hopes of bring change to the country and its people NOT simply be a continuance of former presidents Bush’s policies.
Then you have the ‘tea party’ who do nothing but complain. Did they ever complain when Bush was in office, destroying our constitution? no but that doesn’t matter, Obama isn’t Republican.
I’ve gotten to the point that I do not trust either party when it comes to taking care of its citizens or the country itself. I do trust them to each take care of their own party, the wealthy and big business.
It’s a shame, really but I think the country is lost to the greed, arrogance, self importance, lies said by politicians, etc.
I definitely do not want to live in a fascist country where Christianity is pushing for control over everyones life and soul. I don’t need or want their religion telling me how to live.
I find myself wondering if the ‘great experiment’ has come to an end.



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The L

posted May 2, 2010 at 7:32 am


^ What he said.
I voted for change in 2008, but not this sort of change. I voted for equal rights for gay people. I voted for an end to a pointless and savage war. I voted for an end to the tyranny of the Patriot Act. I voted for government and corporate accountability. I voted for alternative energy and a world free of the shackles of oil.
I got none of the above.
(Is this going through?)



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Pitch313

posted May 2, 2010 at 12:37 pm


I think that the US would be more effectively and prudently governed if representatives and administrators were chosen by lottery. Ordinary citizens are probably more inclined to overall common sense and a basic sense of fairness. Certainly they cannot be any more avaricious, duplicitous, or crooked at heart.



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Diana

posted May 2, 2010 at 12:52 pm


Yes, there is much wrong in the world. Is it possible to pick one thing – just to start – and aim our energies at resolving it? Citizens do have power if they choose to use it.



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Helen/Hawk

posted May 2, 2010 at 5:28 pm


Gus? I don’t get starting the talk of “a celebration of those whose work sustains the modern world” as a time to do an anti-Obama rant.
why not celebrate, as you put so well, “those whose work sustains the modern world”?
Can’t there be a time of celebration of them? One day?
Doesn’t mean that the other stuff isn’t important. Doesn’t mean the the need to Organize isn’t really there.
But one day to celebrate?



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Gus diZerega

posted May 3, 2010 at 12:01 pm


Helen-It’s not an anti-Obama rant – it is a anti-exploitation rant. Obama gets a part of it, but hardly the worst or most of it. And he richly deserves what he gets.
Under current circumstances I think drawing the distinction between the productive and the parasites is about all we can do to celebrate. The oligarchy has deliberately split this country apart by playing to the worst instincts and fears of many. They learned this tactic well in the South after the Civil War, when they turned blacks and whites against one another and kept it that way so the genteel masters would never have to reveal their sordid souls and iron fists that underlay their “way of life.” Now the same tactic is employed against the American people as a whole, which is why Republicans and their Democratic allies are always turning Americans against other Americans.
This concentrates many Americans’ energies against the brown, the environmentalists, the Iraqis, the feminists, the Muslims, (and in time, us, if we grow) rather than against the real collective enemy of us all – those who grow rich through connections, theft, and manipulation. It is time to call them for what they are and realize that so long as they succeed at splitting the productive part of society they will have a clear path to ever more wealth and power.
The political May Day tradition honored the proletariat against the bosses. At the level of economic theory one can criticize its Marxist side, and I long have. At the level of basic decency they always had a major point. The productive people in this country have always been more than simply the proletariat, although it includes them. It also includesmost self-employed people, service workers, indeed, almost all of us. It even includes very rich and successful innovators, such as Steve Jobs. It does NOT include banksters or corporate parasites waxing rich off political favors and gaming the system.
The fundamental problem of parasites using control of politics and wealth to dominate the productive has never changed since Aristotle wrote the exploitive upper class always initiates class war because their greed is without limit. The advent of liberal democracy allowed hope to enter in that this age old curse would be lifted – and it was ameliorated. But we see the same fateful pattern emerging today. It will have the same outcome if not checked democratically.



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Helen/Hawk

posted May 3, 2010 at 2:27 pm


I hear you. And agree w/ the importance/emergency of what you say.
which does not, however, negate my feelings about living in the midst of what you describe and wanting a day naming the strengths of those workers you name and celebrating them (and the workers).
One day outta 365?



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