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How to Make a 600-Pound Gorilla Float like a Butterfly (part three)

Robin Alexander

Posted on December 15, 2017 10:23

1 user

I don't know the last time I was asked to vote yea or nay for a corporate CEO, who, by the way, is making more than 350 times the average worker. And you want me to trust these people?

We know that we cannot rely on our politicians. On the other hand, they may be owned by the American oligarchy, but as voters perhaps we have a fighting chance with them. I can still vote against a politician I don't like, call his office and complain bitterly, or attend a town meeting, if the politician has the guts to show up. I don't know the last time I was asked to vote yea or nay for a corporate CEO, who, by the way, is "making more than 350 times the average worker" (Washington Post, 2014) – the largest pay gap in the world – whereas a few decades ago CEOs made 30 times as much as the average worker.

And you want me to trust these people?

Then again, democratic institutions are threatened from all directions; even the vote is under attack (and never mind the Russians): fewer polling locations, abridged voting hours, impossible voter ID demands, and, of course, gerrymandering. And then there's the systematic incarceration of young men of color who can't vote when they get out of jail. See how conveniently that works? Clearly we need to do more.

In his book The Open Society and its Enemies (1945), Karl Popper — Austrian-British philosopher and professor wrote, and I paraphrase:

The question is not 'how do you get good people to rule?'. Most people attracted to power are at best mediocre, and at worst venal. The question is, how do you make the power elite frightened of you?

As Chris Hedges (journalist, professor, activist) often recounts, Nixon was frightened of the liberals. In a panic during a huge anti-war demonstration in 1971, he had a blockade of city buses placed end to end around the White House. He turned to Henry Kissinger and said, "Henry they’re going to break through the barricades and get us!" That's exactly where you want power.

We the people have to tame that gorilla. Only then will it all work. Vote, complain, take a knee, take to the streets, civilly disobey, resist, and outright rebel. These are becoming our moral imperatives. If we do this, the 600-pound gorilla may one day float as lightly as a butterfly, and we could have the type of country that most people (Trump voters and Bernie voters) could be happy with.

Are you listening, millennials?

Robin Alexander

Posted on December 15, 2017 10:23

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Source: TechCrunch
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