A long while ago I had a chat with some people somewhat idealogically opposed to me. I made a few arguments that I thought I needed to do further thinking on, so I saved a transcript. While clearing out folders earlier today, I came across a partially edited version of that transcript, abandoned for over a decade for reasons unknown. As I read it, the events of the last few years impinged, prompting me to update and finish this.
Trapped in a system we try so hard to escape yet where, invariably, only a half to two-thirds of the population vote – at best. The opiates are quelling the masses and the stifling of activists by media blackouts prevents the hoi polloi being disturbed. Then again, they are more liable to change channel than watch serious news, fake or otherwise. While apathy is the prime motivator, the status quo remains.
Entrapped in the system is how society will stay until a viable alternative is proposed. But along with that, there has to be a way to get to the alternative from here. Noble aims are nothing but propaganda if you cannot find a way that would not cause more grief to the populace. Goals are laudable but, without method, they frequently remain ideals.
Naturally, those affected or motivated get angry. Often it’s ranting on social media. Sometimes actual protest. Sadly, in these times, shouting rarely does anything except irritate or induce fear because ranting rarely does anything to explain the causes – and even when it does, the message will often be lost because of the tone. People have a remarkable, sometimes verging on delusional, ability to ‘tune out’ things they decide are irrelevant – like when they decide you have nothing useful to say.
Take your anger and turn it into resolve. Form a network with other angry people. Draw from each of your skillsets and experience to chose an aspect of the problem to work on. Then dig into it with the fervour you dedicate to posting links by other disaffected people or highlighting crimes to the indifferent and the converted. Get to understand the problem deeply. Become experts on the things you perceive as ‘enemy’. Then, starting from the goals you have, see how you can gradually change this broken society to arrive there. Plan for small stages, small changes, because this is a monolithic, interdependent system and sudden major change will bring grief to those you are trying to save before affecting those things you need to modify, be they people or systems.
This implicit need for anger before action is a fundamental of change that has been dictated by the very systems so vehemently opposed. It is a delaying tactic that is divisive and that can be alienating. Thus, while the opposition argues over how to object, the plan in question continues.
There needs to be a serious reconsideration of the methods of dissention before even starting on the problems you oppose. Revolutionise the revolt before revolting against the system. Rebellion using ‘traditional’ methods can only cause traditionally acceptable change. Not good enough. Any revolution is flawed by its use of outdated concepts that have understood outcomes. Something new is required.
Protest within any framework dictated by those being protested against can achieve little. Those who wish to enact change in the 21st century must stop using unevolved 19th century methods – they will not achieve the fundamental changes that are needed.
I was damn sure that presenting a reasoned, viable solution is the only hope of getting the mass support needed to enact desperately needed change. Now, I am not sure even that will work, should the change be contrary to the dictates of those in control. It seems that solutions are irrelevant if you have a charismatic leader. (Yet again, history served a lesson that we ignored.)
No, I have no cohesive idea of a new way. I find myself a victim of my own restrictions. I believe in the adage “don’t bring me a problem, bring me a solution.” That is the only way, but in the current situation I feel a holistic understanding simply cannot be achieved in time to allow the necessary long series of small solutions to reach the defined remedy that averts a civilisation-changing catastrophe. That catastrophe will be prolonged, will end humanity as we know it, and will quite possibly render Homo sapiens extinct.
I believe that man’s venal nature will out, regardless. I hope to be proven wrong.