Tuesday, February 26, 2013


Citizens, did you want a revolution without revolution? Original French: Citoyens, vouliez-vous une révolution sans révolution?

 Réponse à J.- B. Louvet, a speech to the National Convention (5 November 1792)

Look at the American Revolution in 1776. That revolution was for what? For land. Why did they want land? Independence. How was it carried out? Bloodshed. Number one, it was based on land, the basis of independence. And the only way they could get it was bloodshed. The French Revolution —— what was it based on? The land—less against the landlord. What was it for? Land. How did they get it? Bloodshed. Was no love lost; was no compromise; was no negotiation. I’m telling you, you don’t know what a revolution is. ’Cause when you find out what it is, you’ll get back in the alley; you’ll get out of the way. The Russian Revolution —— what was it based on? Land. The land—less against the landlord. How did they bring it about? Bloodshed. You haven’t got a revolution that doesn’t involve bloodshed. And you’re afraid to bleed. I said, you’re afraid to bleed.

“The smallest and most inoffensive state is still criminal in its dreams.” Bakunin

“Certain women enjoy rough sex. I suppose they like to feel humiliated, cheap, dirty, nasty.” Roxanne Hall

“These it is who kill the rich crop of reason with the barren thorns of passion, who  accustom men’s minds to disease, instead of setting them free.” Boethius

“I desire mercy, not sacrifice.” Jesus

“Once upon a time, Chuang Tzu dreamed that he was a butterfly, flying about enjoying itself. It did not know that it was Chuang Tzu. Suddenly he awoke, and veritably was Chuang Tzu again. He did not know whether it was Chuang Tzu dreaming that he was a butterfly, or whether it was the butterfly dreaming that it was Chuang Tzu. Between Chuang Tzu  and the butterfly there must be some distinction. This is a case of what is called the transformation of things.” Chaung Tzu

“Individuals and masses attribute everything that irks them, without exception, to the existing dispensation, while for the most part what they are suffering under is inherent human frailty.” Jacob Burckhardt,  Force and Freedom

“The realization of ethical values on earth by the state would simply be brought to grief again and again by the spiritual inadequacy of human nature in general, and even by the best of humanity in particular.” Jacob Burckhardt, Force and Freedom

"Poor naked wretches, whereso'er you are,
That bide the pelting of this pitiless storm,
How shall your houseless heads and unfed sides,
Your loop'd and window'd raggedness, defend you
From seasons such as these? O, I have ta'en
Too little care of this! Take physic, pomp;
Expose thyself to feel what wretches feel,
That thou mayst shake the superflux to them,
And show the heavens more just."
  William Shakespeare, King Lear

Because I see so many weak ones trodden down, I greatly doubt the sincerity of much that is called progress and civilization, but only in the kind that is founded on real humanity. That which costs human life I think cruel, and I do not respect it.

—–Vincent van Gogh, The Hague, December 1881

Because I see so many weak ones trodden down, I greatly doubt the sincerity of much that is called progress and civilization.’

—–Vincent van Gogh, The Hague, December 1881

“No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.” Luke 9:62, The Bible

"Who knows the fate of his bones or how often he is to be buried? Who hath the oracle of his ashes or whither they are to be scattered?" Thomas Browne

"Who knows the fate of his bones or how often he is to be buried? Who hath the oracle of his ashes or whither they are to be scattered?" Thomas Browne

"Who knows the fate of his bones or how often he is to be buried? Who hath the oracle of his ashes or whither they are to be scattered?" Thomas Browne

“To overthrow the authority of the bourgeois class, the humiliated population has reason to institute a brief period of terror and to assault bodily a handful of contemptible, hateful individuals. It is difficult to attack the authority of a class without a few heads belonging to members of that class being paraded on a stake.” Benny Levy


The thought of American theologian and intellectual Reinhold Niebuhr (1892-1971) is marked by the recognition of "the force and pervasive reality of human sin," an abiding faith in a merciful God, and a deep engagement with American society and culture. Niebuhr's attitude can be characterized as one of pessimistic hope, or, to invoke one of Niebuhr's own expressions, "pessimistic optimism." He rejects the easy optimism that Americans find so appealing and discounts the doctrine of American exceptionalism.

“It was wrong in the optimism which stated that the law of love needed only to be stated persuasively to overcome the selfishness of the human heart. The unhappy consequence of that optimism was to discharge interest in the necessary mechanisms of social justice at the precise moment in history when the development of a technical civilization required more than ever that social ideals be implemented with economic and political techniques designed to correct the injustices and brutalities which flow invariably from an unrestrained and undisciplined exercise of economic power.” Reinhold Niebuhr

Monday, February 25, 2013



"The road to a lawless society is currently being paved by the congressional sequester. Budget cuts will just make it more difficult for the feds to capture terrorists and child molesters. What they're going to do is amputate the long arm of the law. We're not going to sit back and go gentle into the sequester. The consequences are dire. It's unfortunate we have to reach this point." 


They will tell you that democracy is working just fine. That democracy is suffering the usual growing pains in a fast-changing world filled with new technologies and new possibilities for communication. They will tell you to wait and see what happens. Don't jump to conclusions. Don't take unnecessary risks before we've had time to seriously analyze the problem. And besides, we have to be aware of the dangers of fascism and totalitarianism that are waiting for us if we act too quickly. We may only bring down the walls of Jericho and create chaos before we have anything ready to replace the existing order. And when that order falls, we won't be able to fix it. This is the standard argument you will hear against revolution in the rich and successful countries. These arguments will come from the liberals and the conservatives. They will come from the young and the old. These are the standard arguments of people who are afraid. It's not that I don't understand their fear. I just wish they could understand that the time for change is now. The world is drifting toward chaos one way or the other. Chaos is the only thing that can bring real change. I say that the first step in any revolution has to be letting go of the past. Letting go of the things that tell you revolution is bad. Open your minds and press the chaos button because we desperately NEED CHAOS. 


You can't expect me to provide solutions to the problems of the world. My job is to help you see the problems clearly. My job is to shine a light into all your hiding places so you don't think you're solving problems when you're actually just hiding. My job is to be sure that you are aware of all the tricks the capitalists will play to convince you that things are changing and getting better. You have to stop being naive. You have to be willing to see what is happening. And you also have to be willing to take action. I can't be the guide for this action. I am only the guy with the flashlight in the darkness. 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013



Where is the line? Where does realism become excess and even paranoia? It's not an easy question. If somebody doesn't pull back at some point, then conflict becomes inevitable. And history has shown over and over that signs of weakness in a government can be interpreted as an invitation to attack or invade. At the same time, World War I was an amazing example of misunderstandings and incorrect assumptions, strange treaties of mutual protection and paraniod fantasies leading to absolute chaos. Most analysts believe that WWI was avoidable. Of course, historical speculation is not perfect. It's just as easy to argue that all the paranoia was the result of foolish and shortsighted colonialism that was bound to lead to war sooner or later. Historical inevitability is hard to establish but the possibility that things could have been different is almost equally hard to prove. Some measure of caution and preparedness for war clearly prevents war. But too much indulgence in arms buildup and military posturing also invites war or creates the conditions for war. Where is the line? Back to the beginning. It's not so easy to be comfortable trying to establish such a line but what else is the job of the policy-maker? How much military force do we need? What do we need to do to convince our enemies that we are serious about using military force? We have to provide practical answers to these questions and we have to hope that we're pretty much right. In that case, history and psychology are pretty much all we've got.


Force the rich to explain why they should have more - allow them no excuses. No way out. Show them that they are outnumbered and they can no longer be allowed to do whatever they want. To starve people, to hoard and waste resources, to rape the environment, use people as labor and as consumers. We have to do whatever it takes to rip control out of their hands and keep it out of their hands. Take back the government, the planet, your dignity and your future.