I need clarification. Articulation. To explain my way forward. I need to think clearer. What is it that I’m driving at? I need to stop ranting and raving, stumbling towards some murky point in some inarticulate future. I have said this before but my ideas need clarity, I must begin shaping and honing as a sculptor with a piece of wood, stone. Without art and technique our ideas end up as grandstanding whining bores in a forgotten pub. Besides, I’m beginning to wonder what the point is in continually striking out, ranting and raving when the world isn’t listening, is too busy looking out for itself? So am I simply an ego out of control or is there some basis for pushing on, out, up? Is there any point in the individual striking out whenever there is a perceived wrong, injustice, inequality? And if there is, who does one strike out against? The Government, the Citizen?
Ah, yes, the Government. After all is it not their policies that have us in this mess in the first place? Well, yes, that is certainly true, but really when we look at the facts we must admit to ourselves that it is the entire system that’s at fault. A change of government isn’t going to bring about real change, only more of the same. The apparatus of government is immobile, is fixed and as we now live in an economy run by an elected hierarchy of managers – managers in charge of portfolios they know nothing about – I can’t see anything radical happen soon, ever, never. I can only see more of the same. And if that is true then it is not surprising that inertia has set in. Not surprising I’m ranting
And what of the noble citizen? Should a nation not be judged on its citizens, on the collective, the tribe? Should we as a country (an economy, rather) not look into our collective mirror and question our own motives? Should we, as a nation, not bear the burden of our own wrongs, greed, hate and the injustices we have committed on others rather than blaming the person, the department, the union, the company, the state? Are we not ultimately responsible for where we are, who we are? And if we are to blame then who do we strike out against, ourselves? No, ourselves? We can’t do that, I can’t do that, it’s not my problem it’s your problem. See as a democracy, as a free market economy we don’t operate as a collective, we don’t work for the collective well being. As many social theorists have said – democracy ultimately champions the will of the individual over the collective. And if that is the case, if that is the truth then our so called culture, morality and collective well being are but empty shells, words, taglines we use to describe by – products of our economy, brand Ireland. There is no citizen only niche markets and demographics. We are now truly a society of the spectacle as Guy Debord wrote in his famous Book, The Society of the Spectacle (La Société du spectacle) in 1967;
“In a consumer society, social life is not about living but about having; the spectacle uses the image to convey what people need and must have. Consequently, social life moves further, leaving a state of ‘having’ and proceeding into a state of ‘appearing;’ namely the appearance of the image”.
It’s “the economy stupid” is the tagline to our image, it has become our mantra and we are all to blame. Inaction can no longer be tolerated. It is no longer enough to let things pass by. And if it means ranting and raving until we learn to be articulate then let us scream from the roof tops ‘til we are blue in the face.
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