Tales Of Angst, Alienation And Martial Law

Published on Countercurrents.org, by Phil Rockstroh, 26 July, 2007.

2 excerpts: … Moreover, a closer look would reveal that the inner processes by which an individual begins the act of acceptance of authoritarian excess — the mixture of chronic passivity, boredom, low grade anxiety and unfocused rage inherent in the citizens/consumers of the corporate state that primes an individual for fascism — have been in place for quite some time within the psyches of the American populace, both elites and hoi polloi alike. Although, don’t look for torch-lit processions thronging the nation’s streets and boulevards; rather, look for a Nuremberg Rally of couch-bound brownshirts. Instead of ogling the serried ranks of jut-jawed, SS soldiers, a contemporary Leni Riefenstahl would be forced to film chubby clusters of double-chinned consumers, saluting the new order with their TV remotes. In the contemporary United States, the elation induced by the immersion of one’s individual will to the mindless intoxication of the mob might only be possible, if Bush seized dictatorial control of the state while simultaneously sending out to all citizens gift certificates to Ikea …


… Keep yourself as healthy and as sane as possible: we’re going to need you around after the inevitable collapse of the present system. Also, beware of those reductionist demons of the mind who diminish the soul-making possibilities of “mere” words. The acts of writing and reading are seen as passive; to crackpot realists, these activities seem useless, unproductive – the feckless indulgences of a class of the thin-wristed effete.

Accordingly, Americans have all but ceased reading. Worse, they displace their feelings of self-loathing borne of their own corporately induced passivity upon writers and thinkers. If the tenets of democratic discourse are to survive, it is imperative that writers and thinkers begin to engage in a passionate defense of themselves against the kvetching armies of crackpot realists that have encircled and laid siege to our collective hearts and minds.

But don’t expect to be lauded with praise for the effort. It’s doubtful our adversaries will be moved by our entreaties: There cannot be a rapprochement with reality for those who have never had a relationship with it in the first place. Yet verbal imagery and depth-inducing insights are the DNA of compassionate engagement. It is not a coincidence that George W. Bush is an inarticulate oaf. Conversely, there are many things in this world that require being touched by words, for there are occasions when words alone can suffice to take us deep and lift us up and serve to ameliorate our alienation.

It is in this spirit that I offer the words above to you; I’m traveling light; they’re all I’m carrying with me, at this late hour, in these dark and dangerous times. (full long text).

(Phil Rockstroh, a self-described, auto-didactic, gasbag monologist, is a poet, lyricist and philosopher bard living in New York City. His contact).

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