Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Nothing New in the New Year

From Wikipedia:

A poor economic situation and an unmanageable national debt, both caused and exacerbated by the burden of a grossly inequitable system of taxation, the massive spending of Louis XVI and the many wars of the 18th century

High unemployment and high bread prices causing more money to be spent on food and less in other areas of the economy


Food scarcity in the months immediately before the revolution


On the other hand, there were social and political factors, many of them involving resentments and aspirations given focus by the rise of Enlightenment ideals:

Resentment of royal absolutism


A resentment of noble privilege and dominance in public life by the ambitious professional classes

Resentment of manorialism (seigneurialism) by peasants, wage-earners, and, to a lesser extent, the bourgeoisie

Resentment of clerical privilege (anti-clericalism) and aspirations for freedom of religion
Aspirations for liberty and (especially as the revolution progressed) republicanism


Any of that look eerily familiar? Unless one is a die hard neo-con of the highest order it would have to.

I started thinking about this back in 2000. Naturally at that time such ideas put me pretty squarely in the "paranoid nutcase" camp. Looking at least slightly less nutball these days.

Don't know about the rest of you but personally I would prefer not to go through a revolution or civil war. I mean seriously, all those beheadings and the interim turmoil get incredibly messy. I was, and still am, a strong supporter of our current form of government. Eh, well, more or less. The emphasis these days leaning more heavily towards less.

No, I'm not advocating we commence building guillotines, quite the contrary. I'm asking if it wouldn't be wiser in the greater scheme of things to do a little self-inventory and an overhaul. The engine seems to be sound but some of our pieces and parts have begun to fail and others simply have not kept pace with change. You know the saying, an ounce of prevention......

At some point we are going to have to face the fact that we cannot continue to build upon a massive underclass without the ever more likely possibility of being bitch-slapped. Hard.

It's worked out fairly well so far. We've managed to disenfranchise certain groups piecemeal and the rest of us were, for the most part, ok with this. So what if we don't care for single moms, hey, it was their bad choices. Who cares if we criminalize addicts, they had a choice. Not going to worry about minimum wage workers, they should have gotten educations. Ethnic minorities? Screw 'em, they could have stayed in their own countries. Gay people, no big deal, how many of them could there be.

Except in defiance of all accepted laws of gravity it's all rolling uphill now isn't it? How many Americans now feel secure that they will have health care when they need it? How many are left who feel safe in the knowledge that neither they nor any of their loved ones will ever have to work for subsistence wages? How many do not have a loved one who is or has been a single parent, an ethnic minority, gay, suffering from addiction, facing bankruptcy, unable to afford college, etc? Feel free to add your own "less than privileged" group here.

Ok, so you say none of these situations apply to your family. Bully for you. That puts you in the what, 10%? Which leaves 90% of the population, um, not exactly in your fan club. Not when push comes to shove. Dangerous odds.

Now keeping all of these "special" groups at each others throats has been pretty handy. Nothing like divide and conquer but it's wearing a little thin now isn't it? Don't know that you've noticed but we've begun talking to each other, you know, comparing notes and all. Wouldn't say there is consensus at this point but we've managed to find at least a few talking points.

No need to panic just yet but just keep pushing and I'm confident we can blow the whole mess into a giant bonfire. History has a way of repeating itself and the one thing we seem to be unable to do is to learn that.

8 comments:

Omnipotent Poobah said...

The thing that chaps me is that even when those things DO apply to them, the crazy bastards go ahead and keep voting for the morons anyway.

THAT, I truly cannot understand.

Not Your Mama said...

I hear ya! Like lemmings racing for a cliff. Hoping for Jesus and the Easter Bunny to come save them.

pesu said...

This is absolutely ridiculous! I have been writing this comment the upteenth time to just wipe it off at the end. I guess, I am not good at brown nosing, so, I just say that I loved what you had to say.

Yours truly,
Pesu a.k.a Pekka

Not Your Mama said...

Pekka! I'm just tickled it's you :).

BTW, I'm not ignoring the question you asked a while back at Vigil, just didn't seem like the right place to answer. Considering a secondary more "personal" type blog where I can bore curious folks with my uninteresting history.

Women on the Verge said...

Mama- History is repeating itself in the form of many large internment camps that have been built in our own country ( courtesy of Halliburton)... on major rail lines... sound familiar?? Combine that with the little tidbit that our government now classifies one as a terrorist if you seek to try to change the current government and I'd say we're headed for a heap of trouble.

cls said...

I keep hearing about these internment camps. Does anyone have pictures? I mean, I have no doubt that Bush and his minions would do this, but is there any physical evidence?

Women on the Verge said...

Yes, there are pics that have been published about 2 of the camps... one in Texas and another in Wyoming I believe... you should be able to Google them. If not, I know there are pics on the Bradblog...

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