A thousand wrongs would be thwarted if food were a right. If we had some kind of great American dinner every night, everyone invited, working with food producers and land owners and each area making their own particular regional flavors. Doesn’t matter what is served, just that it is for everyone. An invitation into the slower moving, brick and mortar economy of agriculture, which, if we paid people not to buy combines, could employ all of us endlessly, even if base pay was just a roof and food for the next foreseeable forever. Two hundred years, maybe they’ll cure cancer. In two hundred years, maybe they’ll make that better battery. I think even a goal as simple as this could occupy a nation as great and far reaching as America: buying time.
Let’s make our goal getting our country to the end of that next two hundred with a stabilized economy, with basic necessities and vital products and services like healthcare and potable water not only treated as rights, but organized with concrete, regional, local infrastructure with manageable figures, so homelessness and unemployment are jokes in two hundred years. If we plant trees we’ll never sit in the shade of. If we take this money obsession of ours and buy our kids and their kids some time, that would be something. That’s my angle. Stop letting what I don’t know get in the way of what I do. As long as I, and everyone I know, is alive, we are going to need food, water, and shelter. Those are forever-needs. It’s listed at least three times invisibly on every block of every calendar.
Agriculture is real estate. Agriculture is neighborhoods. Downtown. Agriculture lines highways and fills otherwise empty ditches. Agriculture is Revolution. The Revolution must be an economic shadow. Funded by nature, housed in sprawling farms all across the countryside. It is no longer enough to steal from the rich to supplement the poor.
We must now steal the poor from the rich,
and give them back their selves.
Look at our way of life the way a farmer would. Pretend America is just an American farmer. It grows Americans. Maybe we lay freedom eggs or something. You don’t start selling eggs until you build enough capital to feed and house your flock of Americans regularly. You don’t demand an egg for several days and only afterward deposit fourteen days worth of pellets.
You build your coop, put a little feeder and waterer inside, and constantly clean and expand and improve, and you sustain that, often for months, before you ever see an egg.
We are paying government not to be business.
To make long term investments in us. Like feeding us, housing and guaranteeing sustenance on some kind of measured out, calendar-marked timeline. That’s not even close to socialism. That’s the short math of survival. You’ve guaranteed no one’s freedom if you have not guaranteed the resources of life. No one exists in a vacuum. A human is a complex equation, solved daily by something we call a habitat. When that habitat isn’t guaranteed, it creates a condition in the Americans in your America coop I call ‘crippled self esteem’.
Constant, low-level, background anxiety, knowing your whole way of life could go away because your boss had a bad week, or a simple, unavoidable accident, or a decision you regret. No job. Means no food. No steady housing. No free clean running creek within a hundred miles you could drink from. No sir, we made life outside the dollar impossible. You can scream socialism if that makes you feel better. But it won’t change facts.
All concentration of power is corrupt. Like how you can’t take a footstep without crushing something. So all footsteps are corrupt, says the ant. Intentions be damned. When deciding whether or not to trust someone, don’t take their promises for proof. Do they have the right to say sorry to you. Do you trust them to fail, knowing their failure is the progenitor of more than a thousand successes. We all make mistakes. Kings. Governments. Corporations. Gods have apologized before. The more power you give a person, an office, a title, only increases the consequences of their carelessness.
Who knows if we’ll cure cancer, or learn how to postpone old age, or master nuclear energy or muster a flying car in our lifetime, we’re still struggling to build better batteries but the propaganda of our society would have us believe we’re on the precipice of answering the mystery of the universe like it was a multiple choice question. See. Progress. I don’t know. Some things aren’t happening because they just plain won’t. Cancer is harmful mutation, life is what, positive mutation? How do you cure your source?
I say we put it on hold, because we are like children in the knife drawer, we aren’t ready, as a people, for the technology we’ve begun to explore. I say we focus on the knowns. In two hundred years we’ll be as hungry for fresh air as we are now for food. Clean water will entail a chemical equation. We’ll exclusively have picnics on rainy days. The sun will eventually become the bright cloud looming over all our nightmares. There will be no new magical source of food. It will be the same as it ever was. Alongside iron, steel, plastic zip ties, sustenance will be reshaped into shackles.
It’s about renovated bathrooms and kitchens and putting new floorboards down on corrupt foundations. We need a more solid base. Government hit the track running, declaring for us, by us, a bill of rights more for us than by us. I believe in balance. Two way streets. Other than signs and painted lines and flashing lights, every road goes both ways. No matter who or what says otherwise. Remember that. We need a Bill of Rights, over authority, for government, because without it, they’re keeping us arguing over simplistic basic functions of human society established outside of time. Beyond constitution and revolution and justice systems. Food. Water. Shelter.
We’re launching missions into outer space, subsidizing single crops and mandating the price points of others. We are arguing decisions that are only to be made by trained, certified doctors. With no other natural resource for them, we’re policing medicine, as if people seeking health were criminals.
I don’t care the color of tile we choose for an upstairs bathroom if the concrete left corner of all of this is sinking into ever-softening earth. When there are termites enjoying the joists for breakfast, we should not discuss building new nooks to take meals in watching the sun rise. While gravity takes bites out of the high rise and everything metal gets dressed up in rust.
We, the people, need to write rights for our government to operate by, and before we’re all provided the resources to reasonably feed, house, and water ourselves, there is no higher priority on the agenda.
The founders knew a bureaucracy would be so confounding to the common people we’d fall under it obediently confused and subservient as if legalism was a new kind of steeple, for what is an altar without a gavel to bang it and summon up unsettled verdicts like they were lingering spirits. I don’t want to argue the way things things have been done. The founders invested the lives of our ancestors in the pursuit of freedom and left slavery in the system. Their ideas, their version of quality, is moot. We need to take our way of life down to the root, and start again.
Representation is the curse that has beleaguered this nation. Representative currency. Representative government. Representative freedom. And since its establishment, it has kept farmers, landowners, food producers, too tired and too busy to build any kind of revolution comparable to the first one. We need an agricultural economy, built locally into the infrastructure of every corner of our country. Barter based. Community supported. Democratically governed.
Everything else can remain the same, but the economy that dictates the prices of new Mustang convertibles or used iPhones or shiny logos on tennis shoes should not be the same one that determines the price of food, medicine, life giving water, or me and you. That economy already existed long before America, before Europe, before anyone conceived of something so big as a continent enough to name it. A farming, agricultural, basic, solid, slow changing and frustratingly consistent system at the bottom of our big, grand, shiny, plastic, expensive, current one.
A food, water, and shelter economy. One that recognizes the inarguable fact that poverty is, simply put, just another word for death.
Let me try to explain. Do you know this guy, the person who uses duct tape and rubber cement to fix burst pipes, and then leaves it, for months, until it breaks again. Or who saves money on plumbing piping to use as electricity conduit, or paints over grounding wires. Have you met the guy who uses his friends to do a construction job even a contractor would hire a contractor to do. Just to save a buck.
These people voted for Trump. They call themselves conservative. They pretend they’re running businesses, which are just dressed up opportunities to talk down to other people, while bleeding money into the companies that sold them the supplies to get started. See. Those companies are run by liberal-minded individuals.
They’re not panning for gold in California. They’re selling you the pan and a shovel and inventing denim pants.
Conservative today, burst pipes, rusted wiring, and slow sinking foundation, will be the most insurmountably expensive option moving forward. The word conservative might be applicable for a year, two, maybe even a decade, and then, with shrugged shoulders and skeptical grin, we’ll be right back at the same problem. Again. Checkbook in hand.
It is not conservative to half ass a project today praying you won’t still be around to fix it tomorrow. Liberal-minded people put money on projects preemptively, recording in the long run just how much they saved by their spending. And almost every social program put forward in the past century has done just that. Taken severe chunks out of violent crime rates, filled in some of the recession pits so we don’t hit bottom so hard. I have personally seen this attempt to provide affordable health care bring millions of the youngest, and interestingly enough, oldest members of the workforce, out of the shadows and into the limelight. We were reminded, there is a current of movement in this nation that still slows down for us. The people.
I don’t see that conservative minded individuals could ever look at us as an investment. As an opportunity. Helping in our hard times is at best their charity. They don’t see how I come out of it swinging. Working. Inventing. Changing. I’m not saying conservatives don’t want that, but they’re sure as hell not going to put money on it before it’s a sure thing. Conservatives are giving away their agenda, offended that we’re offended by phrases like minimum wage. They’re stocking up on duct tape. Come on. The tires are bald. The wiring is exposed. We can damn near see sparks.
I am no Democrat.
But on a timeline, again and again, they have proven themselves to be the true party of conservatism. Instilling policies today that have saved us incredible amounts of time and money moving forward.
Republicans are arguing fiscally conservative in the moment quick fix applications, that end up costing exorbitant amounts in the future. And once we have no choice, because the machine has finally just shut down, they are quite liberal in increasing the national deficit tremendously. You know, one wouldn’t have to work that hard to put up a decent case that on a timeline, Republicans, in every way, socially, fiscally, morally, are a far more liberal party.
And this is where I’ll end. Where I usually wind up. Arguing over timelines. Like every other prophet. Essentially committing entire lives to promoting the philosophy of composting.
These terms, conservative, liberal, don’t hold up the same way on a timeline.
If intelligent life from the other side of the universe showed up on earth, they are not going to believe the party arguing against family leave, fair pay, the basic freedoms of women, also known as half the entire population, electing sordid pseudo-celebrities and teasing nuclear holocaust, is the more conservative party.
They’re going to laugh a little at how we are still being used by our own words. And then. They will try to find anyone who can functionally think on a timeline.
To be saved by a government program is to belong to it.
If band aids and ibuprofen are the only things keeping you alive.
Another word for that is dying.
Sustainability is about predicting future need.
Another word for that is pessimism.
Government serves many basic functions.
And a lot more that are redundant.
They want it that way.
The word is enslaved.
And for the longest time
it has been the surest sort
I have been had by a dream.
That one day I will wake up out of and truly see
a world where humankind is free. And every nationality
on the planet can finally fit within one species.
I have been had by a dream.
That our leaders will be caught dreaming.
Up late at night scheming.
Earmarked nightlights though
their smiles are beaming.
I have been taken by sleep.
And placated by dreams.
Ever since my eyes were opened.
And in the dream I woke from.
Judging the living from the dead.
Was only a government program.
I believe that everyone has the right to have their rights not be an amendment to the system that defines them. I believe better and more deeply than our founding fathers did, that our rights are not the fodder of governments. But ingrained guarantees of freedom invested in us by our creator. My rights are not evenly planted rows of corn peppered in patches of soybeans. They are feral weeds. Should we forget to ever garden here again. I am free. Full of flowers and fuzzy grass heads and cat tails and wild medicine and poison. I don’t need a farmer for this field to yield. I need a farmer to help interact safely and amicably with my neighbors, locally and abroad. To oversee vast water tables and plate tectonics and geothermal activity. To connect the dots between surplus and need.
The time of government going through and telling you whether or not you’re full human is over. Black people did not earn the right to vote. Nor did women. They were denied this basic personhood and representation and real acknowledgment in the eyes of the government structures that dictated their lives. Intentionally. Full with purpose. We are still arguing about a system that was, by design, not designed for all of us.
The founders were not imaginative. They were not soldiers in the war for liberty. They saw tax dollars going overseas and devised a way to seize them. Threw a few Latin words together they recalled from grade school and split a crown into five hundred pieces. With the stroke of a pen, they created a new merchant level economic class. Government jobs. That die like zombies. Carcasses always reanimating in one form or another down the line. Not like fashion. Or farming. Or the oil industry. A couple hundred men, some paper, and a pen, redirected a new world’s worth of exported taxes right back to them. And constructed a system that guaranteed themselves positions, and platforms to prop up their children. Representative government makes a monarchy of democracy. A crown broken down and split into a thousand different disease resistant careers.
They didn’t get freedom right, because that was not what they sat down to write.
The best we can do to honor our founders, our ancestors, is to imitate their impulse to revolt.
To revolution. Whenever. However we can. To write out and rewrite our rights.
Our expectations of governments. Of ourselves.
But we have to recognize the flaw of this system is at its base. It’s in little words.
Words like our. For instance. In full regards to the framers of our constitution.
Their our was less than half of our’s.
That doesn’t call for an edit. Or a rewrite.
It means we go back to the drawing board.
Or in other words.
There are people sitting in Washington, DC
praying the day never comes when someone like me
successfully spreads the message that until humans beings
have protected food, shelter, water access,
same as animals in National Forests,
by right and not by purchase,
we will never be free.