[FoRK] Re: An armed society... (freakin' Canada.)

Ian Andrew Bell <hello at ianbell.com> on Sat Sep 15 11:50:28 PDT 2007

I'm not anti-American.  My very best friend is an American (albeit,  
living in Brussels).  I lived there for a tumultuous four years.

What I am attempting to alert readers to is the accelerating decline  
of American (and American-style) civilization, the blame for which  
can be laid largely at the feet of America's wealthy and greedy.  The  
very notion of the nation-state as a functioning Democracy was formed  
in America when the people revolted against the arrogance of the  
diffident rich by the disaffected poor.  America has perverted the  
term and used it as justification for Imperialism, while abandoning  
the fundamental tenets of what it actually means at home.  That  
people In America can sit at home and watch this hypocrisy on  
television and do and say nothing is baffling to me.

And this time, 230 years later, as the country is driven deeper into  
decline by an inept, self-serving bourgeoisie, where is the revolution?

I'll answer that, myself, with an observation:  In revolution,  
rebellion, jihad and revolt alike it is the critical mass of the poor  
who become the unstoppable force against which wealth serves as no  
meaningful protection.  But if you look through the course of history  
it is the intellectuals, who come from the middle (usually upper- 
middle) class, who stir the poor into action.  They have the luxury  
of perspective, education, and idle time that is necessary to  
organize and compel others to action -- whereas the poor  
traditionally have not, as the daily struggle for survival occupies  
their thoughts.

I suspect that the difference between now and the 1770s is the  
advanced state of the consumer goods cycle and entertainment  
industries.  It's created a system that has lulled even the wealthy,  
salty intellectuals into a form of slavery, occupying our time and  
trapping us all in a cycle of acquiring more, more, and more.  And  
that system is being exploited by the likes of Bush, Rove, et al.

Sure:  I'm mad at you, America, because you're taking the rest of us  
with you into the cesspool.  Like Emperor Nero, you fiddle while Rome  
burns.  Or maybe you're busy watching "Rome" on HBO.

Revolution can take many (including non-violent) forms.  The members  
of this list, and folks who read my blog, are exactly the sort of  
people who could tickle the masses into action to affect positive  
social change.  Forgive me trying to alert them to what I think is  
the problem, and trying to influence them to action.

That is the basis for my rhetoric.


On 5-Sep-07, at 1:48 PM, Jeff Bone wrote:

> On Sep 5, 2007, at 11:35 AM, Jeff Bone wrote:
>> Ian, I appreciate and even agree with a lot of your specific  
>> complaints about the US, but the universal anti-Americanism is  
>> neither warranted (hey, a lot of us detest the folks in D.C.,  
>> too!) nor even factually substantiated.
>> Take, for example, the recent implication that Canada's gun  
>> controls generate positive results.  Let's list a few facts:
>>   * Canada's overall crime rate is actually 50% higher than the US
>>   * Toronto's violent crime rate is higher than New York City's
>>   * 30 US states are safer than any Canadian province
>>   * The Canadian
> Postus interruptus;  I thought I saved that to draft, apparently I  
> sent it.
> Anyway, it was clear where all that was going.
> All I know for sure is this:  I never wanted to own a gun.  One of  
> my high school girlfriend's brothers was killed in a "playing with  
> guns" accident years ago, and afterwards - despite having grown up  
> w/ guns in the house, though not often seen or talked about - I  
> never felt like I wanted one in my household.  That all changed  
> last year, thanks to my stalker incident;  and now I've got a fun  
> new hobby.  I probably have spent on average one to two hours a  
> week at the gun range over the last year, I own several distinctly  
> different guns, and --- I'm a damn good shot, thank you very  
> much! ;-) :-)
> Actually being faced with that element of society which is  
> dangerous and unreasonable can certainly change your perspective on  
> such things as arming yourself.
> $0.02, YMMV,
> jb
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