We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up
Sunday, September 30, 2018
For me this poem by a Palestinian Canadian expresses what many experience currently living in capitalist societies. We are trained to relate to things instead of each other. Our masters in the capitalist ruling classes are obsessed with things of wealth and power, and try to inculcate this same obsession in us to better exploit us.
Consequently we devalue each other in preference to things; and being socialized in this culture, we often model their behavior by treating each other as things that we can use to accumulate more wealth and control of others. It's all a game in the sense that we feel our lives are being played out by some alien rules instead of living lives centered in our human experience and being creators of our own lives. Those who succumb completely to this experience lose their humanity and end up as sociopaths who inflict unfathomable harm on others.