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Detroit Jubilee!

I got off the Trailways in downtown Detroit Saturday morning, the 18th of September, 1965. My sole possessions were on my back.IM000006.JPG

Walking a couple of blocks to the ancient Saginaw Trail cum Woodward Avenue–the white man’s first paved-concrete road in the world–Detroit’s Finest lost no time picking me up. I could hardly blame them…

I wore a cut-off, coarse white shirt with a faded “P” on the back, white pants of the same material and a pair of well-worn Beatle boots with no zippers. No socks, no underwear, no ID. After 23-yrs on Earth and six years in the Old South, that just about summed me up.

I spent that final year-and-a-half bustin’ rock in a quarry to work off a $600 fine at $2-a-day. I had been one of the last who failed to, “Stay north and mind your own Damn Yankee business.”

It didn’t take long for the Detroit police to figure out that I wasn’t an escapee from a Georgia chain-gang. After hearing my story, they had a good laugh, took up a collection and let me go. Today, I’ve come full circle…back to those political roots.

I’m close to finishing off a 28-yr federal prison sentence (25 in prison, 3 on Supervised Release) for what we call in prison-speak, a political humble. Or as my erstwhile Southern compatriots might observe as…Hi-Batry: Snatchin’ Shit from a Flying Goose’s Ass.

I live in an ancient downtown Woodward apartment building on Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and the VA. My total earnings are $768 a month and I’m in good health for a 70-yr-old. (The FAA even cleared me to get back my pilot’s license, but who can afford to fly?)

My expenses are $400 a month rent, another $125 for power, maybe $100 for food, and $35 for Internet. Fortunately, bus service–what remains of it in Detroit—costs seniors 50¢.  They’ll no doubt soon be cutting that “charity” off.

I publish this blog, now over 385 indexed articles on a variety of subjects I find of interest (for which I have never received a dime), and I’m 18 chapters into writing a bio-sci-fi novel. I quit smoking back in ’63, quit all drugs in ’71 and alcohol in ’90. I occasionally play the Lottery and I like jelly-beans.

As I sit before this computer (a gift from a comrade), I consider myself no worse off than most of Detroit and the majority of people in America who work, produce and perform services for their bare survival and the pleasure of the ruling elite…who apparently consider most of us to be little more than sucker-bait.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

When I arrived in Detroit back in ‘65, the City was a thriving metropolis approaching 2 million. The minimum wage was $1.25. Given the Vietnam war economy, I soon had a union job (UAW Local #212) that soared to $2.93 in ’68. Thereafter, I attended Wayne State University on the GI Bill.

Lest one pity that pay, bear in mind that it purchased MORE than today’s wages. The working class has been increasingly going backwards…assuming one can even find a job.

Our corporatist rulers have found that buying what remains of the media, the political system, Ponzifying their financial networks, looting the public treasury, privatizing the gov’t, criminalizing surplus labor and exporting most manufacturing jobs to cheaper wage-slavery arenas is more profitable…and fun. Their contract players in politics allow them to amass and keep their wealth by eliminating corporate-related taxes.

History will show that what Karl Marx coined as “capitalism” is nothing more than a catch-all title for criminal conspiracies by corporatist privateers who would otherwise be perceived as what they are: infantile-fixated sociopaths. Would we elevate rape, for instance, to the level of legitimate human intercourse?

Okay, that’s a bad example; that’s precisely the conservative mentality.  Blaming the victim is a major foundation to their pathology.

Why the world largely accepts this behavior–both individual and socio-economic rapaciousness–as a legitimate enterprise will no doubt be the subject of future academic research (assuming there’s a free world in which to do so).

To me, the answer is no more baffling than why human embryos have tails and gills. We evolved from ancient forms and this includes related social systemics. I don’t believe that the continued predation of each other disguised as a socio-economic ideology is viable over the long term.

Today, down to some 700,000 souls, Detroit is a microcosm of America’s immediate future. We are today witnessing the next phase in the corporatist quest for total wealth and power.

An earlier privateer, Mssr. Antoine Laumet (Cadillac), envisioned Fort Pontchartrain in 1701 (Detroit) as the choke-point between the upper lake’s beaver trade and the markets to the south (as highly profitable plush hats for Britain’s aristocracy and landed-gentry).

Today’s corporatist pirates envision the example of Detroit as the future of the American and world economy. Detroit is a test case; Detroit is the next stage toward fascist-corporatism. The-State-that-Koch-bought has all-but-gerrymandered what remained of democracy out of existence in Michigan.  Once in political power, conservatives no longer even bother with the semblance of democracy.

Detroit and several other Michigan cities and school districts have been taken over by “Emergency Financial Managers” (EFMs), their latest oxymoronic ruse.

Those who helped create Detroit’s impoverishment are precisely those who now rule its final privatized gentrification. That remains their goal. There are only two potential solutions for the future, assuming that a third is not the common ruination of humankind and the planet. I wouldn’t bet against the latter.

Even by the standards of conservative predatory practices, some ancient rulers (i.e., the Sumer Empire) perceived that amassing monopolistic wealth and property in the hands of a few is a form of mutually assured social destruction.

Recognizing the criminality of the practice, the ancient Cuneiform record shows that some rulers came up with a means to deal with it…at least temporaneously. They created what came to be called: The Jubilee Year.

For almost a thousand years they periodically wiped the slate clean of all major debt, loans, interest, slavery and property ownership. Self-described Hebrews (jumped-up Sumerians née Abraham), memorialized the practice in Leviticus 25:10.

The Liberty Bell is inscribed in part with: Proclaim liberty throughout all the land and unto all the inhabitants thereof. (Except, of course, Indians, slaves, women, debtors, prisoners, et cetera.)LibertyBell

The remainder of the quote did not make its appearance on the bell: “and ye shall return every man unto his possession, and…unto his home.”  I don’t see the current crop of felonious corporateers and their political flunkies as being that smart.

That sums up the “revolutionary” hypocrisy of America’s early ruling elite. We are both a nation founded on slavery, genocide and theft as well as a nation which proclaims largely unrealized ideals…at least for the masses.

The other alternative is revolution itself, or in America’s case, the completion of the initial revolution. History shows that ruling elites rarely have enough sense to cut their losses (that is, their greed).  Given the power that the corporatist elite already have–that is, the domination of their wealth and systemic rule–it is the only viable alternative…assuming there is any at all.

Humans are remarkably adept at perceiving their lives thru others. It’s an inevitable evolutionary  side-effect of language and “civilization.” This is both misunderstood and misinterpreted by those in power as a product of their own fame, fortune, talent…whatever.

People buy into the psychic illusion of vicarious living.  They largely don’t rebel because they fallaciously perceive achieving such a position themselves.  Sorry, while “anyone” might so achieve such a goal, there are–by the nature of the system–only a few slots available.

For 97% of humanity, vicariously “experiencing” such living thru others is the best it’s going to get.

Its long past time for the sans-culottes and Mssr. guillotine.  What have we got to lose…

Dr. Publico

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One Response
  1. Dale MacLeod says:

    Great post. What do we have to lose?

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