Political searching for a Kartoon: Ku Klux Korporations

A few different conversation lines that I would draw upon for a political comic strip, if I had the skill or digital know-how:

Scene: Corporate guy (CG) in suit talking to KKK member, both have drinks in their hands, the KKK member only listening and nodding in understanding:

Slide 1

CG: “Hey, no need to wear those bed sheets to commit your crimes, we have corporate clothing and technology that hides us from responsibility from the lynchings we create”

Slide 2

CG: “and you don’t have to worry about breaking the law, we have lawyers for that… a few of which will be appointed as legislators to keep the laws on our side.”

Slide 3

CG: “One more thing, we don’t wait for night to do our bad deeds, we get paid for them! And we spread out who we hurt, so it is less visible.”

A caption below might say: “Hiding behind layers of blankets, or layers of technology” or “Republican-debate House Party”

Confident Businessman portrait in a conference room

Confident Businessman portrait in a conference room


Corporate Campus Crimes

Corporate Campus Crimes2

Fortunately or unfortunately, I live in proximity to several corporate headquarters, and have had to include their campuses to get in a variable trek for my lengthy dog walkings. The experience from these trespasses has afforded me to develop a fledgling academic field by the name of Comparative Corporate Campus Ruminations. I say trespass, but from my perspective there is certainly also an impingement on me—and other lives much bigger than mine—which I suppose is the prime mover behind this post’s existence. So far all the walks have been very tranquil, whether on a weekday morning or a weekend evening. The natural sounds from crickets and locusts emanate from the tree packed margins—the “wild space” separating one corporate kingdom from its neighbor. Tree packed? It’s a relative term contrasted against the spacious, breathable, un-claustrophobic lawns occasioned by small tree islands. The scope of corporate lawns alone is an advertisement that these corporations are economy-driving job creators: think about how much mowing there is to benefit the backbone landscaping industry.

Tranquilized Environments: No More Kidding?

A third,

A third, “reserve” parking lot, thought what it’s reserving I can’t say. I think they couldn’t pass up on a “build two, get the third free” deal.

Why should I complain about something so pleasant, like having a free visit to a country club1? Even the parking is free, that is if you can find a spot. So much of the landscape that isn’t lawn is taken up by an assortment of giant asphalt solar tarps, where to park the car? These passive solar heaters must have been installed to counter the air conditioning system that must make things inside oppressively cold. One good thing then, at least, is that the people that work inside the large five story building must be forced to walk through the greened campus from wherever they park their cars, or where public transportation drops them off. There are, of course, the occasional rebels that decide to park on the asphalt solar tarps, but I’m sure corporations have a means of dealing with people who break their rule(s), such as placing the offender in a south-facing corner office where they are forced to see a blue-tinted sunny landscape all day long, as opposed to a choice cubicle with four generic walls to keep them company.

“Then I guess we don't have to worry about finding people in that water.” “Or leeches!” “What's the difference?”

“Then I guess we don’t have to worry about finding people in that water.”
“Or leeches!”
“What’s the difference?”

Changing Registers: No More Kidding!

In witness to overwhelming tragedy humans will sometimes make light of things to obscure the horror, as I have attempted above. However, I would like now to shine light on this particular tragedy because the voice of the ecosystem, which humans are generally deaf to, has now been eternally silenced. It’s hard to think of the past voices of grave-less plants, fungi, and animals when things are so quiet and peaceful; for me it is a sickening peace, the peace that follows a successful genocide.

With a little imagination the crime becomes obvious: 15 acres of tons upon tons of accumulated biomass—also known as life—virtually annihilated so that a few dozen humans can spend their “productive” hours sitting in a 1/4 acre office building. The crime is not past, and it is not contained to the crime scenery. An actively intoxicated water source—such as the pond in the picture above—is sure to spread toxicity in ways that a criminal designer and property manager had no thought of, or worse, cared little about. Otherwise, maybe their thinking is much more subtle, and entirely anti-life, such as:

If we let mosquitoes breed, we will inevitably let a whole aquaculture ecosystem spawn full of mosquito predators on up the food chain, such as fish and frogs, and that is absolutely not acceptable. We dare not let mosquitoes be part of an ecosystem that will control their numbers far more efficiently and regularly than our own chemical industry allies.”

Not all corporate campuses will attempt the false glamour of a perpetually poisoned pond. Usually they will contribute their dose of waste and toxicity by implementing a water projecting fountain and be satisfied with chemically treated lawns and deserted mulch beds. With precaution, visit one of these campuses to analyze the health threats for yourself. These crimes are actively happening around us, whether we see them or not, and whether the laws recognize them or not. Don’t hold your breath for any black-robed dishonors to rescue us and correctly judge this as a crime—we must be the judges! We must figure out what is appropriate remediation and justice before our own victimage becomes too great a burden and we need to rely on others to defend us. If not, the case studies will continue to pile up along with ecosystem carcasses.

Notes (correctly disordered):

2 – Concisely Conveying Cronnie Congressmen Cordially Condoning Corporate Campus Crimes (3C2) is an alternate title,though this article doesn’t remark on legislators and other representatives. However, this alternate title is still fitting, for it’s no lie that elected (and unelected) officials are implicitly involved in allowing particular industrial and commercial practices to go unchecked, practices ironically that they sign bills to outlaw private citizens from undertaking. I know some people are upset that corporations have the same legal status as actual people, but I think they’d be more upset if they realized corporations have a higher legal status than us. A two tier system has been created with individuals placed at the sewer level.

1 – Country Club (2C1)could be looked at as a euphemism for country clubbed down by modern industrial civilization. This relates to another, more sinister euphemism pointed out by Noam Chomsky: the Defense Department was the new title given to the War Department after WW2; the only thing that changed (other than the name) was the increasing amount of wars the USA would become involved with.


I “meme’ized” this picture:

People Treated Water

and here’s another, arguably related:

Monsanto Genocide

The Graduation Speech They Deserve

As Jake walked across the stage, shuffling by the front row of insignificant, self-important deans and other inflated assholes, his smile grew. He was about to be put at the helm, and they couldn’t react until the damage was done. As he drew near the black podium, there wasn’t much applause coming from the graduating class, and that didn’t bother Jake: there wasn’t much reason for it since nobody really knew who he was. He had written a few noteworthy poems for a small niche of readers, and had managed to stay in touch with his former professor still at the university. Because of this his work was circulated and lauded, allowing his name to be nominated and then selected as a “successful” alumni to give a commencement address for his alma mater.

After his speech, he knew his status in the minds of others would change. Certainly the faculty would publicly abhor him, but what about the youth out there, beyond the podium microphone? He was now looking out at them, a great mixture of diverse, 21 and 22 year old bodies all accepting the rigidity of traditions that would have them spend 100 dollars on some ugly black gown that they would only wear once, this once. Would the speech rile them up, or would it be dampened out, as so much of significance seemed to be these days? He was now going to find out.

“Those who know, those who no longer wander—they are the ones who are lost, and they shall now be put last”, began Jake, looking from left to right. Realizing that his point may not have resonated in all of his audience, he inserted: “That’s a reference to the tattoo you put on your ankle two summers ago, for those of you who I lost.”

“As an older man now, no longer a peer but perhaps old enough to be your parent, what wisdom can I offer you? I can start by saying that I’m not quite sure there is much wisdom that has come down through the ages, evidenced by the strife at every level of society, from the global, all the way down to the single individual at war with himself, herself…. otherself, other otherself. I coined quotable question, that may put it succinctly: Which is the more important lesson? Babies teaching their parents the lesson of life, or parents teaching the lesson of death, frequently with multiple examples? Many among my generation, and the older generation,” he motioned with an arm to the distinguished faculty, “we—they—like to blame your generation for the ‘moral decadence’, the ‘grotesque’ acts of confused sexuality, the cultural violence, and so on. I might be an anomaly in saying this, but the problems are far older than the youth, and in fact youthfulness is their greatest antidote. The university is not a refuge from this strife, but complicit in its elicitation. It is a collection of strategies to oppress the other of your choice—stored in brains, books, and other media. The irony is that the oppression is implicit right from when you sign the contract with the school, and like an abused victim, you go on to become a perpetrator later. I am not here to inform you of your victimization, I am here to implore you to become the generation that makes the great turn, that both sees the murderers in plain site and disarms them, dismembers them when appropriate, and not take up membership in their institutions.”

“I have a bigger point, a series of points—most of them negative—to make clearer why you should do this. What was Hitler’s age, when he planned operation Barbarossa? When he invaded Poland? When he moved to change his sick fantasy world into an actual world. Closer to home—a different sack of shit, no less evil—Harry Truman—the only human ever to decide to use an atomic weapon against people, and he did it twice, just to cement his evil legacy. How old was Obama, back in 2009, when he sold out on his campaign message and became cocksucker in chief, a douchebag just like the rest of the political world? He used our generations wind power to blow his sails. He doesn’t care that we don’t have any air now.”

“How old are generals that oversee war without generally risking their own lives? Alexander the Great conquered but did not subjugate, neither his own folk nor his enemies. His father Phillip, maybe, for he was older and more political, but he Alexander faced those he enemized directly on the field, never from a remote command center. The last thought on Alexander, the one of your age, is that though he loved war he did not use war to further other ends, he sadly and recklessly saw it as its own end, madly in love with it for it’s own sake, embodying a naiveté not yet extruded. Let’s turn to business. How old were Ken Lay and Jeff Skilling from Enron when they had and used the power to screw hundreds of people from their savings? How many more are there like them who just haven’t been caught, or who have paid off those with the nets to catch them?”

“A few good apples don’t turn a human profit out of the rotting tree of corporatism. These are your enemies, who flaunt their successes as if they are yours to share, when really they are at your expense. You’ll find that the most successful of enemies are not those that stab you in the back, no; they are those who day in day out slowly rob your energy for their own purposes. This method of slow methodical extraction of energy is so successful, that it has ideologies spouted by all forms of media to structure language to its own defense—thank you universities for teaching Karl Marx. This is a method employed largely by the mature, rather over-matured, middle aged people. Those who have learned all the subtleties to subordinating others, which is particularly useful because they have less control over their own bodies as the aging sets in. Put another way: as their fertility wanes, their appetite for destruction waxes. If only a midlife crisis was something internal that affected only the individual; no, their crisis becomes all of ours. And might I add, this is not something peculiar to western culture, this ageism that oppresses the youth is just as engrained in eastern societies, albeit in different manifestations.”

A man seated on the stage rose, his accumulated and repressed fury now evident in his snarling face. His chair squeaked, and Jake gazed over to regard him. Leaning in to the microphone, Jake decided to scold the man approaching him before he was able to pull the plug on his speech. “Sit down! How rude of you to try to interrupt. I’m lecturing now, and for once it’s something worthwhile, and here you are trying to shut me up. How many times in your aged career did somebody try to take away the stage from you? Not often enough!”

The man started to walk off the stage, bellowing: “I’ve heard enough of this non-sense, I will not take any more of it.” A few others followed him, as well as a few graduates from the crowd.

“What a convenient luxury it is to the lofty, to be able to walk out and not face any consequences, to be put on trial and be afforded the escape route,” spoke Jake eying the deserters. “It’s a show trial, to be sure, but it can have real consequences for all involved. You can burn your diplomas, and let this mill grind no more. Beat down these deans… it’s a way of honoring them. By doing so you show them that you have learned, for it is they who have used these institutions to beat the youth down, shape them into the hideous middle aged creatures that they have now become. There is no wisdom in the baby boomer generation… they are a bag of bones, their minds are more corroded than their stupidly fed diabetic bodies. There are exceptions to their rule, but we must realize that their rule is not acceptable. It has not been for a very long time, and if we are to redeem this earth, we need to loosen it from their grips. They are pathetic, and deserve to be stripped of their power by those younger and more deserving of power, because it is the youth who have the longest time left on earth, and who have this huge mountain of problems to deal with. The youth will deal more honestly with the many problems and in trying to not create new ones because they cannot just retire out of the problems. You need to be in power, not them.

“Some of you may think,” he continued, “that I am alienating a huge group of people. Do not fear, they have already alienated themselves by both their actions and in-actions. Fortunately for me, I am not a politician, and I do not want their votes. I will not stand in the way of any fires you start, and I would add that you needn’t feel guilty about any of the quote-unquote ‘damage’ you may cause. Don’t blame fire for burning, blame that which is old and dried up.

Capitalism and Islands of Socialism: A Response to the Trotskyist Argument for International Revolution

To many anti-capitalists capitalism seems like a daunting enemy—a goliath—but those who take this big view to see global capitalism for the awful thing that it is, should perhaps zoom out even further to take in an even bigger picture, one that belittles capitalism and brings into focus the history of life and of the planet as a whole. For as much as capitalism seems to have going for it, it still needs constant and growing energy inputs, and some level of innovation in a world where it is largely responsible for having destroyed it. Most large organizations are under it’s fold, namely state’s and corporations, but there are many other resilient organizations (beyond socialist worker parties) that Trotskyists seem unable to give appropriate weight to. There is a sense among them that short of global revolution and the total destruction of capitalism, any other socialistic efforts will be co-opted, but I think this is to the denial of the many vital things that are not products of capitalism and are not beholden to it, and are often antithetical to it. Yes, capitalism is the dominant economic system between humans who are consumers, producers, others (I felt the need to add this third category in this age of economic perversity), but in many places in the world capitalist modalities scarcely enter into the oldest and most enduring human organization—the family. Thinking anatomically, within human bodies the economy between cells, and between organs and muscular-skeletal systems connecting through nerves and blood flow, is very cooperative displaying socialistic principles of sharing and “from each according to his abilities to each according to his needs”. Eco-systems that blend the three kingdoms of life and the less animate, inert earth, are largely symbiotic and a teacher that is too often not read (our nature literacy is at an all time low).

Capitalist relations do invade patterns of thought, and there is a suppression of a genealogical understanding of the development of all things in preference for a transhistorical view of the present as having some natural, eternal purpose. Capitalism projects itself backwards in time, overshadowing the real past, but an honest look backwards would show that just 250 years ago capitalism was not yet global, something practiced by a peculiar English minority in a much larger world of other traditionally exploitative systems. And capitalism was arguably only poised to be spread so virulently because of the discovery of fossil fuel energy potentials, not some teleological force within capitalism that made it unstoppable and somehow logical to be a conquering force: if a giant asteroid hit the earth and killed all mammalian life, would capitalism still have taken over?

British Empire Evolution

Capitalism did not come to be all at once, and it does not necessarily need to be destroyed (unsubscribed from) all at once, with every single worker being class conscious and squaring off with everyone’s common enemy, the exploitative land owner. Besides, to accept the capitalists as the actual owners of the means of production is to accept the property ideology of capitalism, which seems to be regressive, non-revolutionary thinking. A revolution to transfer ownership from one class to another, sounds more like a regime change within the larger umbrella of propertied economic systems. Sticking to the topic of global worker revolution, think also of the huge efforts it would take to link and organize such multi-lingual, multi-continental efforts, and keep them from being hierarchical bureaucracies as some of the socialist parties desire (while other parties accept the idea of hierarchical organizations as a means to an end).

The argument put forth against creating “islands of socialism” is that they will come to be immediately under siege by capitalist forces, and there is a lack of truly understanding that such a way is a reaction to capitalism not a true break from it. Couldn’t it be equally as true that such islands put capitalism under siege, as pockets of land and pockets of potential consumers are taken out of the exploitative loop? I believe that such islands—some of which already exist imperfectly as small scale communes—serve as inspirational models that service a concrete contrast to the capitalist system that has so destroyed the imaginative capacity to envision an after-story to capitalism. A truly communistic society, no matter how small, is sure to invoke passions and energies from its purveyors that the capitalist system has never tapped into because of its alienating, deadening manner. Islands also serve as social experiments to teach lessons of what works well and what doesn’t as much.

I think we should feel relieved and happy to start socialism small and manageable, as this is in line with how every species (or economic/social system) always has started, allowing time and space for it to grow. We start with ourselves, in our bodies that share nutrients through our blood to all the different parts, in a very harmonious way. This is a great place to start, and we only have to grow in small ways beyond this level… To play on some Marxist prose, we have to impregnate this old, harmful society with a new, humanistic one. Babies don’t kill their mothers, but with enough caring they do outlast and replace them.

This post is a continuation/conclusion of Strikes r Out

Strikes r Out

As the happenings from May Day get more vague, I thought it was a good idea to skip church (for me personally, it’s ‘most always a good idea to skip church) and type up a couple of thoughts.

My position that I voiced on Friday was that we radicals need to leave New York City and start communal villages where land is currently—though not indefinitely—much more affordable and much more valuable from a human perspective: “where land is not a concrete desert upheld by massive petroleum inputs”. I encountered some who were open to this idea, but many too—Trotskyists in particular were a strong presence at the gathering, distributing their own literature—who believed we need global revolution coming from a uniting of the workers of the world. I wanted to focus this post now to worker’s power, and talk more about global revolution in an upcoming post.

Workers under capitalism have historically been deemed—rightly so—to be the true power of capitalism, with one of the most obvious ways of displaying that power to themselves, and to the naïve, unlearned capitalists, being the strike. Striking is very effective when workers do indeed hold the real power and can bring their masters to heel. Work has evolved into “work” in many places, and there are many unproductive underlings that could just as easily go on strike and be dismissed without so much as a reaction from their employers. On this point, it seems to me that corporations like Walmart feign a need for employees, but truly it’s a facade to further their on the ground presence. There would be no need for a scab when the limb is already dead, being propped up by invisible strings.

But maybe if ALL employees globally agreed to strike indefinitely and were able to prevent scabbing, they could shake the foundations a bit, but I am uncertain how much this would hurt the supposedly existing capitalists at the top. Important to note is when it comes to important employment such as food production, wouldn’t striking probably lash those workers at the bottom of the scale the worst? It’s difficult for the workers of the world to unite behind striking when there are such vast differences in what they would be sacrificing by putting their livelihoods on the line. Would employees who are much higher on the pay scale ever agree to identify with those at the bottom, when they are so close (at least in their minds) to the top? Further, why would people who work in some societally positive industry (it seems so hard to come up with an example) want to ally with, for example, workers in a bullet factory, when those workers being paid at all for such a ghastly profession is itself a primary question in their mind? Another difference separating workers from one another is that some have the choice of where they are employed—even if they don’t have much say over the amount of pay—while others have no choice, and so the efforts to bring coherency and a sense of fairness for a global program is multiplied immensely.

I believe striking isn’t the answer for widespread change, moreso today than ever before, largely because it is ineffective, but so too because demanding more pay (or workplace changes) for a job that ethically or practically doesn’t really warrant it, is not a justifiable arena to put efforts into. On the other hand, leaving your job to build up practical, important skills related to growing food (such as adopting the low impact permaculture philosophy), is much more in sync with creating a radical and beautiful future; a future where slaves won’t require masters, nor other slaves, and they will lose their chains…

The Inflation of Rights

There is an island that stands strait in the way, and you know that if you were to destroy it, the aftereffects would weaken you so greatly that you wouldn’t even benefit from your violent efforts. What do you do? You raise the entire sea around it, so you can sail over it without being bothered. The island is still technically there, but it is incapacitated.

Much easier than raising the ocean to negate an island is the process of inflating a currency. The value of the dollar, and its legitimacy—as will soon become visible—is diluted when too much of it is created and given away to big banks. Similarly, the political currency known as rights, sometimes distributed to the citizens of a country, as has supposedly been done in the USofA, is also vulnerable to dilution through inflation. A key that is copied and handed out to everyone makes a mere novelty of the lock.

The monetary elites, who we shouldn’t forget are the corporations, wouldn’t use the tactic of ever trying to challenge or get rid of the constitution. Instead of running roughshod over our rights, they would much rather add legitimated “friendly rivals” that need judicial consideration along with the constitution (or even within the constitution), so that the constitution’s real purpose gets drowned out, though technically it still exists as the same entity.

How did this come to pass? The idea of rights that was only intended for the narrow island of humans was INCompletely extrapolated to the corporate world when the “incorporation” norm was afforded to businesses during the 19th century. Most of the structural pieces were already set, and it was only a small but important step further to complete the bridge and have corporations be considered legal people. This transition was surely helped along and eased into common consciousness by the the entertainment industry constantly propping up the idea that there are and will be robots that have feelings that we should not dismiss. When we start to consider inanimate objects as having feelings and in need of defending, why shouldn’t Nike and Starbucks be so kindly considered and coddled? Not that I expect it to happen, but I wouldn’t be shocked or surprised by a story that involved a gang of murderers not being charged for the crime because they were doing a corporation’s bidding as its employees. The ironic thing to follow would be the anger in the streets directed at the corporation, not at the actual murderers and unable to be directed at the CEO who is impossibly distant and inaccessible to the common masses.

chappie wall-e

Nothing is eternally sacred because the evolving context around it will use and abuse it for all that its worth, and then leave it as a useless skeleton that can be looked at but not much gained from.