Saturday, November 1, 2008

The Voluntary Servitude of the Free

Dear George,

The cornerstone of stability in a democratic society is voluntary servitude. This is what keeps the proles all in a row and quiet. Such a state is the result of an atomized individualism in which existence is reduced to the superficial. When identity is little more than what you wear, what you drink and stainless steel kitchen appliances in your newly redecorated kitchen, life is reduced to a mirror in which the individual preens and postures.

This habituation is what makes deep systemic changes in a society that is corrupt and rotten to the core unlikely. If something isn’t working, redecorate it, slap a new coat of paint on it and buy new furniture. As long as it looks new, nothing else matters. Termites may be gnawing at the joists and beams, but who cares as long at the scent of fresh paint is in the air.

With the proles dutifully pulling on their forelocks as they max out their plastic, a vacuum is created in which a barbarian elite is given free rein to suck the country dry. Engulfed by the soothing notes of canned music and a proliferation of screens wherever they go, the proles never hear the sound of money bags being dragged from the treasury.

Eight years of barbarian rule have emptied the treasury ensnared the proles in a web of debt peonage. The barbarians have gangbanged Columbia, leaving her an aged whore desperately applying layer after layer of pancake makeup in a vain effort to conceal the dissipation that pinches her face.

They have succeeded because their energy comes from the bile that curdles their souls and gives rise to the vileness that is the very foundation of power. It is this bile that explains how a country with a mere 5 percent of the world’s population has incarcerated 25 percent of the world’s prisoners.

Ah, but the termites continue gnaw, and the beams and joist become weaker and weaker as the barbarians militarize police departments and station brigades on Main Street against the day when the proles finally realize that they’ve been had and storm Wall Street.

…if they do. As Samuel Beckett wrote, “We have time to grow old; the air is full of our cries, but habit is a great deadener.”

Your admirer,
Belacqua Jones

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