I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore

Madame Weebles —  April 24, 2013 — 125 Comments

I’m infuriated by how things are at the moment.  Politicians who support legislation that suppresses women’s rights.  Corporate officers who maintain their own profits—and those of their shareholders—by cutting jobs left and right and manipulating the financial system at our expense.  Religious zealots who would drag us all into a new Dark Age if they had their way.  The destruction of the environment across the globe.  Violence against women, children, and animals.  I could go on and on and on.

Social and political problems are nothing new.  But I’m so fed up with how the Powers That Be are failing to address them despite the wishes of the general public.  Look at how the Senate rejected the bill that would require background checks prior to gun purchases.  Public support for gun control is at a record high, yet these fuckwads still voted against this measure.  Women make up 50% of the workforce, yet the Equal Rights Amendment remains unratified, the glass ceiling is still firmly in place, and misogynist douchebags are as vocal as ever.  Despite the number of Americans who expressed their disgust during the recent fiscal cliff talks, Republicans and Democrats couldn’t work together to find solutions to our economic difficulties because they were too busy having a dick-measuring contest.

Carl von Clausewitz, the famous military strategist, said, “War is a continuation of policy by other means.”  I believe its inverse is also true: policy is a continuation of war by other means.

I realize that I’m overdramatizing and oversimplifying much of this.  But you get the idea, hopefully.

We can protest, sign petitions, write letters, boycott, and try to vote shady politicians out of office.  But there’s not much hope of success; corporations enjoy “personhood,” politicians are beholden to lobbyists more than to constituents, and companies don’t care about consumers until their bottom lines are adversely affected.

Typically, petitions are effective only when small, specific goals are involved.  A petition to keep one animal from being euthanized, for instance, can be successful; a petition to abolish wholesale animal killing won’t be.  Although I like how in the UK they have e-petitions, where petitions that get more than 100,000 signatures are considered for debate in the House of Commons.  There’s no guarantee that a petition with 100,000 names will be chosen, but it’s an interesting way for British citizens to get their voices heard. [Note: Since writing this, I've learned that the US has a similar thing in place---I suppose I didn't know this because our politicians seem hellbent on remaining deaf to us  Color me shocked.]

Protests can help to shine the spotlight on problems, but in themselves they don’t change anything.  Occupy Wall Street was—and still is—a vital voice for the 99% of us who are getting shafted by the 1%.  But nothing in corporate America has really improved.  Corporate leaders and shareholders are still making money hand over fist while houses are still in foreclosure and the job market continues to languish.  And to date, not one brokerage CEO has been sent to jail for his part in destroying the financial market.

Writing letters to your representative or senator?  One constituent voicing displeasure with a certain policy isn’t going to make much of a difference, unfortunately.  Same with boycotting certain retailers or other companies.  What’s one less consumer to a franchise or a multi-national corporation?  Nothing, really.

Voting idiots out of office can be effective, but government is like a hydra—a multi-headed clusterfuck.  You cut one idiot out, there will surely be two more to take his or her place.

Negative publicity (or what I like to call “public shaming”) can sometimes serve as an impetus for change.  Just a few weeks ago, Disney was slammed for its “I Need a Hero” t-shirts for girls.  News of these shirts spread like wildfire, sparking multiple online petitions and news stories.  Shortly afterwards, Disney removed those shirts from their website.  It’s hard to know whether they would have lost a lot of revenue if they hadn’t—I suspect they wouldn’t have—but it was refreshing to see that corporations can respond to public sentiment and do the right thing.  There are other examples of the power of the consumer backlash, like the New Coke debacle and the Tropicana branding fiasco.  But they largely involved products, not policies.

It often takes years, even generations, for sea changes in attitudes and practices to occur.  At times it takes acts of civil disobedience (e.g., Rosa Parks, the Woolworth’s sit-ins) or rioting (e.g., the Stonewall Riots) to get the ball rolling.  But those daring, drastic acts aren’t ones that most of us have the cojones for.

Power and money are the two things most likely to influence people and organizations to change.  As long as their current practices are lucrative and/or keep them in power, they won’t have any reason to change the status quo.

In one of my favorite acts of civil disobedience, loss of both power and money led to a policy change.  In 1989, Margaret Thatcher instituted the Poll Tax, which set off a series of riots in London, and more importantly, it inspired a massive non-payment campaign.  An estimated 20-30% of the British public refused to pay the tax, and it was abolished by Thatcher’s successor, John Major.  Such protests can succeed because of the sheer number of people involved; what were they going to do, throw all of those people in jail?

So what can we do?  We can write blog posts and use Twitter and Facebook to broadcast information about the injustices we see around us.  And I’m not talking about the impassioned-but-utterly-futile “Share this status if you think child abuse is wrong!” posts on Facebook.  Social media can be immensely helpful in spreading negative publicity, raising awareness, and promoting thought-provoking dialog.  But individually, we can do only so much.  (But if a blog post alone could generate change, then this post would have worked wonders.)

I don’t want to be powerless anymore.  I’m tired of sitting here sputtering with impotent rage.  I want to ACT.  The old saying goes, “Think global, act local.”  Today, with people, countries, and economies being so inter-dependent, we can think globally and act locally AND globally.  I want to make a genuine, tangible difference.  I bet a lot of you do as well.  Now we just have to figure out how to go about it.

125 responses to I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore

  1. 

    I’m still reading, but I wanted to let you know two sites that have e-petitions for the US are http://change.org and https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/.

    • 

      Thanks for this, Combat Babe. I’ve been aware of the petitions on the White House site and for some stupid reason my brain didn’t connect the dots. Probably because I’m so skeptical of any petition actually getting the attention of Congress. Change.org is a site I know well, though.

  2. 

    Description about government as a multi-headed hydra is a good one. A friend of mine was campaigning for a person challenging the incumbent representative. I told him … yes … they have my vote, but if they win on Tuesday, I will be seeking their removal on Wednesday.

  3. 

    Some very good points well put. In the UK the epetition has had some success, most notably disclosing the Hillsborough documents which vindicated the people that blame had been shouldered on for 20 years and highlighted appalling corruptions and cover ups in the police force. Whether it leads to prosecution now remains to be seen, luckily the people fighting the cause never gave up and have campaigned in a dignified manner all this time. Many other things have been debated too but a lot of the time it is fluff used to fill Facebook posts with mundanity.

    it’s still shocking that even epetitions, a successful one gets 100-150k votes but then just clicking Like on random stuff on Facebook people do just to garner more Likes, eclipses that tally by a vast amount. People are incredibly lazy and click Like without even thinking about it, how do we get those people into making more decisive action?

    On a personal level I despair at the amount of pub closures in Camden, places that have stood for hundreds of years turning into flats, important community hubs for minorty groups like the gays, the goths all threatened but no one is doing enough. My pub is full of locals, and they would be lost without it but could half of them even be bothered to state their case against redevelopment plans, they didn’t, luckily the few of us who did had our arguments upheld by the council. I am tired of people’s apathy, if it is too much effort for them to even write the slightest thing in disagreement to any plans if it is over 140 characters or requires more than a Facebook click then they don’t bother.

    Count me in on whatever we decide to go forth with!

    • 

      That’s exactly what pisses me off, Joe—people will automatically click Like on Facebook but they won’t take the time to do something that actually matters, because it requires actual effort. Nice to know the e-petitions have had some success over there, I’m going to have to look into how they’ve worked over here. I’m not optimistic…

      • 

        Maybe word needs to get around about them more if people were not as aware of their existence. And I may start telling people off for sending stupid links on FB. Had one yesterday to say “Like to a photo of two Downs Syndrome girls if you respect them, and or don’t click if you have no heart” I clicked on the senders page and they are full of such things to garner Likes, to me they have no respect for the people they are asking to Like since they are using them for attention.

  4. 

    A quick FYI: in the USA one can also do the e-petition thing at this link: https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/

    • 

      Thanks for this—you and Combat Babe reminded me about this site. I’m going to do some poking around to see what kind of petitions have actually been considered and acted upon.

  5. 

    Yes, down with the fucktards! I’m sickened too, Madame. I think politicians enjoy “wedge” issues so they can keep us busy fighting each other while they line their pockets and pass legislation that allows Monsanto to do fuckall to our food supply, gas and oil drillers to pollute our water and corporations to defund our public school system.

  6. 

    What you said…so well.
    “On my signal, unleash hell!”
    I’m ready.
    Red

  7. 

    I am in total agreement with everything you wrote, Madame Weebles. You said it all and you said it beautifully. I am particularly outraged that 90% of Americans support background checks to buy guns but our Senators defeated the bill that would require gun shows purchases to have background checks. How messed up is that? How can these people thwart the will of the American people like this? We have to stand up to corporate America as well. It’s time. Count me in, Madame Weebles. I stand with you.

  8. 

    1, 2, 3…GO!
    (Also, the world won’t be the same after tomorrow anyway.)

  9. 

    You have already effected change – one drop in the ocean sends the ripples out.

  10. 

    Wow – I am with you all the way–though I am Canadian, a lot of what you said applies here too –

  11. 

    Operation Hell’s Belles. Strategy meeting Friday. You bring the bean dip, drinks are on me. :) Madame, you are a force to be reckoned with. May the force be with us, always!

  12. 

    What a weird coincidence. I just watched Network yesterday. I hadn’t seen that movie since it originally played in the late 70s. It was very prescient. Part of the problem in our current world is a lack of major independent news organizations. Large multi-national corporations have been consolidating power and acquiring and thus controlling major news organizations and how the news is disseminated to the masses. How else do you explain that a major tar sands oil spill in Arkansas received almost no coverage except in “progressive blogs?” They can’t have any negative publicity with the Keystone XL Pipeline awaiting approval.

    Corporate interests control politicians at every level of government and will continue to do so until major campaign finance reform happens though it seems unlikely that politicians will vote against their personal interests.

    It’s true that it seems that just one person making a choice to buy local instead of visiting Walmart or contacting an elected representative might not have an impact. But if enough of those individuals begin to make those choices and are willing to tell friends and families what they are doing and why, things may begin to change. My friends and relatives are probably tired of hearing me say I will never buy anything at Walmart because they don’t pay their employees a living wage, but I’ll keep on explaining how corporate greed results in our tax dollars covering health and food costs of employees at a company that makes billions of dollars in profit.

    This is an excellent piece of writing, Madame Weebles. I will fight with you.

  13. 

    The Hydra comparison was perfect! I do believe in the whole Butterfly Effect concept, if the right Butterfly is flapping its wings just the right way. With enough people it can be done and I think the number of pissed off people on this planet goes up everyday. Finding them isn’t the problem, convincing enough people they’re more powerful than the “Power”, that’s the problem. I want to beat my head off a brick wall with the number of times a day I hear, “Yeah, the world’s going to hell but, you can’t fight government”. I’m with you, I’m tired of this shit. Onward and upward!

    • 

      You’re right, and I am guilty of this mindset quite often myself. It’s difficult not to feel powerless and completely disillusioned sometimes—it’s difficult to believe that any of us can make a difference when you read the latest news reports. But I agree that the number of pissed-off people increases daily, and with any luck we can make an impact.

  14. 

    My dearest Madame: Hooray!!!!!
    Never underestimate the power of one voice, one vote. There are many other voices and votes out there expressing a similar view, we just don’t always know that when we’re frustrated, angry, and hurt. Outside the voting booth, we must take to heart the “Vote early, vote often” slogan and exercise it with our voices and our dollars (or any other form of currency we may use). Our frustration is in our expectation of immediate results, instant gratification. However, evolution, whether in our current or future lifetime, is always a process and welcome when it comes!

    • 

      Very true, Margarita. As I was just saying to C.K. above, it’s hard not to feel completely discouraged and disillusioned sometimes. Instant results would be way too much to ask for, of course, but it certainly would be nice if things didn’t feel like they were going *backwards*. Having said that, there are many things that are better now than they were in the past. But I wouldn’t mind giving it a little push now and then.

  15. 

    I agree with every syllable.

    Weebles 2016!

  16. 

    Well said: “”War is a continuation of policy by other means.” I believe its inverse is also true: policy is a continuation of war by other means.”

    What was the catalyst that triggered today’s rant against the machine? Did some Wall Street-type step on your toe on the train and look at you like it was your fault?

  17. 
    Ashley Austrew April 24, 2013 at 9:44 am

    Thank you for voicing the frustration so many of us feel.

  18. 

    It feels like there is some power in social media. Perhaps more than we had previously thought. Let’s see what we can do…

  19. 

    Your entire article is spot on. But these two parts I like in particular:

    “At times it takes acts of civil disobedience (e.g., Rosa Parks, the Woolworth’s sit-ins) or rioting (e.g., the Stonewall Riots) to get the ball rolling. But those daring, drastic acts aren’t ones that most of us have the cojones for.”

    And:

    “So what can we do? We can write blog posts and use Twitter and Facebook to broadcast information about the injustices we see around us.”

    To me, it seems that we live in a day and age where people use the internet to hide behind and show their true feelings about any subject. Which is nice on one hand, but on the other hand: isn’t it too easy?

    If someone witnesses a person being robbed on the street, 20 years ago this person would’ve jumped in to help the victim, or at least call the police. Nowadays the go-to response is tweet about it: “Just saw someone getting robbed. What is this world coming to.”

    I know I’m exaggerating, but you get my point, right?

    “Funny” thing is, no one even bothers to ask the person: what did YOU do about it?

    I stepped away from blogging for a while, because it just seemed like the only thing people were doing in the blogosphere was complaining. Like you say: “Share this post if you think child abuse is wrong” – people can share it all they want, but every time a person shares that link, doesn’t mean that one less child gets abused.

    You can talk about it endlessly, but acting is necessary. We can complain, share stories, spread negative publicity, but if no one is listening, you need to force them to listen.

    I say: Gang up and go for it.

  20. 

    Well said! At the very least, contributing what we can, when we can in the blogosphere is a place to start. It doesn’t do anyone or anything any good when we stay quiet.

    • 

      It’s so true, Katie. A lot of people stay quiet probably because they don’t think there’s anything that can be done; it’s overwhelming to think about how to go about addressing some of the issues. But the blogosphere is a very good place to start indeed.

  21. 

    Let me know if you need any help with anything. I’m getting older but I’m still wiry and have a lot of torque in my swing….

  22. 

    Hells yeah! You know I’m on your team.

  23. 

    YEAH! Fist pump! I believe change is effectively brought about by social media; look at the Arab spring (for all the good it did anyone, but that’s another story). And business practices have to live up to a better standard because all it takes is for someone to tweet out about some injustice and it’s everywhere. Politicians? You got me there. I don’t know how you solve the dilemma of corporations owning politicians.
    Where I think we fall down is that we tweet, we get enraged, but then we get complacent and go about our business. I try to do all the right things according to my beliefs, but I still find myself wandering aimlessly around a Walmart purchasing things I don’t need from time to time. I think it’s also hard to fight the avalanche all the time. Sometimes it feels like all you can do is pick one tree to hide behind and hope like hell it doesn’t break.
    Now, I am not saying “let’s quit! This shit is hard!” The opposite; like you, I think we need to figure out ways to use our collective power to just call out injustices where we see them. We have a strong voice as bloggers; the right post on the right topic CAN get people thinking and hopefully moving too.

    • 

      That’s definitely part of the problem—we raise awareness, but then what? And it IS hard to fight the avalanche. Which is why I felt the need to write this post–I have no idea what the solution is, but there must be SOMETHING that can be done. And someone has to speak for the bees! THE BEES!!

  24. 

    How to gather the masses seems so easily done in the times of the internet, but really if they, the fuckwads, can’t see us, hear us, don’t have to face us, much we do seems quite futile. Many things we can do on the internet are easily ignored, just don’t click, don’t look, don’t read, have an assistant that only briefs you on things.

    I think traffic can be of real impact, traffic and lack of traffic. Education makes a difference. I love what OWS has been doing there. Personally, I’ve started to refuse to let anybody get away with a non-sequitur and other illogic; it’s a full time job.

    • 

      It’s definitely a full-time job, TAE. It’s tiring. I agree that traffic and education can help a lot. Bringing attention and visibility—especially if it can shame a person or group into cleaning up their act, that’s good stuff.

  25. 

    Ah, the illusion of democracy….people paying attention realize it’s kind of a crock of shit, and get mad, and start rebelling in small or large ways. And in my opinion, every act of defiance is useful. Like this, for example.

    • 

      Well thanks, lady. You’re right, every act IS useful. But I want to be Useful with a capital U. I’ve had it with this crock of shit.

      • 

        I recommend either the Jean d’Arc or Rosa Parks method. Though Anonymous is always recruiting.

        • 

          Believe me, if I had any sort of hacking skills, I’d be pleading to join Anonymous. I love them. The Jeanne d’Arc method, well, it’s a little extreme, and bless her, it didn’t even work!! She got burned at the stake for her troubles with nothing to show for it! And Rosa was badass—I don’t have the ovaries to do something like that, I admit it.

  26. 

    Actually, writing to your elected representative has more power than most folks realize. Especially if you are respectful, make solid (and rational) points and write your letter in longhand. And if you can get like minded people to do the same it actually can make a difference. At least it is some sort of action.

    • 

      Have you had personal experience with this, John? I’d love to hear stories about letters that were acknowledged with more than just a “Dear Constituent” form letter.

  27. 

    fabulously written! yay for finding like-minded folks; totally agree and on board

  28. 

    I hear you, and I am shouting my lungs out in agreement. In fact, my neighbors probably just heard me. I think the biggest problem is what you said here: “politicians are beholden to lobbyists more than to constituents.” Until organizations and corporations can no longer lavish their money on politician’s campaigns, we’ll never be free of their influence. The gun law defeat is a perfect example. Even though the vast majority of people are for greater background checks, the politicians were too scared to go against the NRA. So, so frustrating.

    • 

      It really is frustrating. If the public sentiment goes against the NRA or any other lobby or special interest group, it goes out the window, evidently. I don’t know what the answer is, to be honest. It seems unlikely that there will be legislation to outlaw corporate/lobbyist backing of candidates, so we’ll have to find another way to get around them. Somehow.

  29. 

    You know it, Clown. Pointy, venomous teeth.

  30. 

    It really is like drinking cyanide, Leo—it’s depressing and infuriating. All this bad news and feeling like you have no recourse, it just sucks. Let’s dance, sir!

  31. 

    Online petitions can seem futile, but so many do get positive results. Vocal boycotts of businesses can change policies simply because lost revenue is what a business is going to react to, like the Disney example you pointed out. Sure, Disney wasn’t going to lose money on that particular item, but not addressing that issue would have cost them more sales in the long run. Loss of revenue is a scary thing, even to big companies.

    • 

      I know you’ve participated in a lot of petitions for animal welfare, Calahan—as have I—it’s true, they can be effective for smaller things but for the bigger things, we need better solutions. But you’re right about the vocal boycotts—and I don’t think there are enough of them that are widespread enough to cause real change.

  32. 

    I hear you, Weebs! We shouldn’t stand for this crap anymore. It’s time for a revolution. People don’t have to be powerless. You articulated the problems so well here. We can’t give up or stop talking.

  33. 

    I actually stood on the steps of the CA capitol yesterday (it’s crime victims awareness week) and listened to Governor Brown give an impassioned speech…but I found myself still so skeptical that anything will come of it.
    I choose to try and make a difference in the work I do, but I still don’t know the answer.
    If you figure it out, let me know. :)

  34. 

    i’m quite enthusiastically engaged in local ‘stuff’. i feel like i can make a difference – enlightening others about an issue or situation or project that needs hands, or energy, or money… it all gets watered down when it goes too broadly. lost in a sea of “like this page for puppies and bunnies”, “i need a dollar – here’s my kickstarter page”, “vote for my grandson every day for six months”. i think the key is to perhaps pick ONE regional/national THING at a time. Motivate your core constituency. Have them hump it like a shriner at a hooker convention for the entire month… and see what happens… i, too, feel powerless. and hate it.

    • 

      This is great advice. As if I didn’t already admire the fuck outta you, now I have two more reasons: your activism, and the line “hump it like a shriner at a hooker convention.”

  35. 

    Excellent. Enough is enough. It’s so obvious it’s them vs the “little people” (who’s airports are not impacted? Who has excellent insurance and lots of perks?)
    Select where you spend your money.
    Read widely – both sides – including foreign sources.
    When talking with legislators, leave emotion and vague generalities out of it. Be short, to the (single) point, be specific, and be armed with solid recent facts – nor rumors. Get others to do the same.
    Grain of sand by grain of sand, build a sandbar – then an island. Be the sand storm.
    We have no choice.

  36. 

    From across the pond, I salute you Madame Weebles! If we don’t take a stand for what we believe in and get people to listen to us, who will? One thing’s for sure, I don’t want to be remembered as someone who sat by and did nothing when things in the world needed doing. I might not be able to help you over in the USA, but I’ll be with you in spirit! And my spirit is with you 100%

    • 

      That’s how I feel too, Bennie. I don’t want to look back on my life and think, “I did nothing to change things.” I know there are plenty of people in the UK who aren’t happy with how things are there either—wherever you are, you can do something. And my spirit is with you 100% as well!

  37. 

    A raised fist of solidarity, Madame. One could almost wish for revolution, but that seems to be only slightly more effective than elections in the long run. I’m going to persist in not shopping at Walmart as well (my tipping point; the now-defunct policy of taking out life insurance on employees because so many of them were dying in “I’m not trained to drive this forklift” accidents– if they’re getting killed on the job, how can it make us some more money?), and occasionally yelling at the creature in Ottawa that I didn’t vote for but which purportedly represents me. On the yelling front; have you had a look at Avaaz.org? It’s another imperfect tool for the job, but on a few big matters it seems to have some effect.

    • 

      From what I hear, it seems that many of your fellow citizens yell frequently at the Thing in Ottawa. I would too if I were up there. Thanks for the link to Avaaz.org, I had not seen that one before but it looks very interesting. Meanwhile, if I ruled the world, my first order of business would be eradicating ballpoints. I can’t write with them anymore, they’re just too awful.

  38. 

    I’m with you Weebles! This is not how Democracy is supposed to work. Hell, it barely qualifies as small ‘d’ democracy any more, and the rot is everywhere in the Western world. We have the same sorts of things here in Australia as well.

    If corporations have ‘personhood’ then why the hell can’t we send them to jail when we catch them breaking the law? Heaps of them /are/ caught, but what happens? A fine, a smack on the wrist, and business as usual. If you ever work out how to change this miserable status quo you can count me in!

    • 

      “If corporations have ‘personhood’ then why the hell can’t we send them to jail when we catch them breaking the law? Heaps of them /are/ caught, but what happens?” THIS precisely is the million-dollar question, Meeka. You nailed it.

  39. 

    Well it seems like you not only fired up yourself, but the troop s as well. Great post. I’m an avid online petition signer for causes I truly believe in and collectively we can make a difference. Call me old fashioned but I also write to my representatives. Sure I’m probably in a some FBI file, but at least I’m trying. And guess what, sometimes they even write back, but if they don’t then it’s get even time at the polls! Keep up the fight!!

    • 

      Good for you, Jean—I too sign a lot of online petitions, and I’ve written a few emails to my representatives. With the representatives, I’ve only ever received a form email in reply. Someone else here suggested writing longhand letters, which I might start doing. And hey, if we have to be in FBI files, at least it’s for a good cause!

  40. 

    You make me proud!!!

  41. 

    This post immensely appeals to the subversive in me. ‘V for Vendetta’ is my all-time favorite movie: one day, I intend to have V’s quote “People shouldn’t be afraid of their government. Governments should be afraid of their people.” tattooed somewhere on my body. I never used to be a conspiracy theorist or even a remote questioner of authority – but somewhere along the line, I snapped to from self-absorbed “sheeple” complacency. It all began with randomly viewing clips by Anonymous on YouTube, and inched from there. While by no means a crackpot theorist or zealot, I am decidedly AWAKE, and more socially conscious than ever before in my entire life. Better late, than never at all.

    I would be humbled to be considered as a candidate for foot soldier in this mission. My blog is at your disposal, Madame.

  42. 
    the urban misanthropist April 25, 2013 at 4:08 am

    Here here! I think it was Bucky Fuller that said for every problem our world faces there is a series of solutions, the only barrier to them being human greed. Protest at wrongness is important, but I think we also need to promote solutions and force the powers that be to justify their inaction too. Hmmm – I feel a series of posts coming on….

  43. 

    I’m with you all the way… partly because though things are not so bad here, it seems to be the way the world is going, and we all need to stop it… including the destruction of the planet, etc etc. Do you support AVAAZ petitions – they can raise a million or more signatures and take the message to councils and conferences at world level and make a difference. If you Google, you’ll get them…Power to the People, I say !

    • 

      You know what, Valerie, I’m embarrassed to say I was not aware of the AVAAZ site until another blogger mentioned it above. I checked it out and it does look very interesting and promising. I guess I’ve been spending too much time complaining and not enough time looking up different solutions! I’m glad NZ has so far escaped a lot of the difficulties plaguing the rest of the world, but as you said, the world is headed in the wrong direction overall, so something has to be done.

  44. 

    “Republicans and Democrats couldn’t work together to find solutions to our economic difficulties because they were too busy having a dick-measuring contest.”

    Madam, you always so eloquently put into words EXACTLY what I am feeling. Thanks for telling it like it is.

  45. 

    I will need to call back and read this one again but do carry on kicking ass while I am gone :) Wow what a great posting Madame Weebles :) xxx

  46. 

    Fear No Weebles is right! I’ve been trying to think these past few weeks, what can we do to make a change? All this has to stop. Now. If it doesn’t, things will only get worse. For me, I’m doing what I can but it feels like I’m the only gladiator willing to stand up. I’m working on a post about this too, which stemmed from listening to MJ’s Man in the Mirror. We have to ban together and make this happen. I’m in. Let’s do this.

    • 

      I know exactly what you mean, Double L—sometimes I’ve felt like the only gladiator too. But judging from the response to this post, and from the conversations I’ve had with other folks as well, there are more of us that we both thought. I’m looking forward to reading your post on the subject. We’ll do something. I have some plans already.

  47. 

    Excellent rant, Weebs… I love your take on Clausewitz, and you can imagine I’ve read a lot on the dude in the past twenty-plus years.

  48. 

    My money’s on you to win, Madame Weebles.

  49. 

    I just wish John Stewart would run for President already.

  50. 

    Riots are not a good idea as a way of protest. People and things get hurt which costs more money in the long run.

    If big businesses would pay their corporation tax like they’re supposed to and people not take up tax evasion schemes, then the governments wouldn’t be in such a sticky place. If we could pursuade every single person in the world to live a decent and honest life, to not use more than they need, then perhaps we might be able to make a difference…

    • 

      I agree, Lou. If everyone played by the same rules, if everyone were held to the same standards, things would be much better. Unfortunately, the people who make the rules are the ones who create these problems in the first place. Sigh.

  51. 

    The important thing is to stay angry, but governments and corporations rely on us becoming cynical instead – “Well, they would wouldn’t they?” – and that takes the heat off them. What’s disgusting becomes normal practice.

    Anger is exhausting. There has to be some way of directing it productively, to actually change things for the better. But there don’t seem to be many channels for doing that. The system is rigged to keep the same bastards in power.

    And that’s cynical. Wish I knew the answer.

    • 

      It’s not cynical, it’s realistic, unfortunately. Anger is exhausting, and I wish there were more potential for real change as opposed to simply *talking* about change. The system is rigged, the haves will do what they have to in order to maintain their power and wealth, while the have-nots end up paying for it all. Sad, isn’t it.

  52. 

    Wow, I’m delighted to read such eloquent ranting – you already know I’m with you all the way.
    Alas, one thing that could effect change? Kill the net. The problem is that people won’t act while they have toys to distract – so we have to use then lose the toys. We can’t have them back until we learn to play sensibly!
    Vive La Revolution!
    RoS

    • 

      I thought you might enjoy this one, Panda. Our toys do distract us, don’t they. However, I like to think that the Internet could be used as a force for good—I just haven’t quite figure out how to use it for more than merely ranting or signing petitions. Vive la Revolution indeed, sir!

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  1. This Isn't Freedom | Miscellaneous | Daan van den Bergh - May 5, 2013

    [...] we feel threatened and corrupted by greedy and neglectful governments, misogyny and plenty of other things that are wrong with this world Western Civilization, [...]

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