Sometimes on a warm beautiful day with blue skies in Seattle and the background sound of happy kids running around outside and the expectation of celebrating a friend's birthday or planning for a couple days away with my wife, I forget how completely our country has changed since the Twin Towers fell 10 years ago.
The fundamental problem with people like me, a middle-class white guy, is that we have the tendency to live outside of the realm of real solidarity with others. As long as we have a decent job, a roof over our head and our whiteness, we can quite literally afford to forget the nightmare that is clamping down throughout America. We can afford to live as if we are not connected to each other, as if my welfare isn't, in fact, connected to your welfare. Money, status and position can do that to people.
When those towers fell, the last thing those with agendas wanted was for us to come together as a nation, in solidarity toward greater purpose and higher ground.
Those with agendas -- and I speak here of that wicked fusion of Christian fascism with militarized international capitalism -- wanted us to experience anger and rage. They wanted us to declare war on the world, go crusading and seize the assets of others as if our national welfare was disconnected from the welfare of the rest of humanity. Those agendas have become the policy governing the new American way of life. The nightmare we are slipping into is a downward spiral into a world of each against all. Our wars have created the iron fist of austerity that has pummeled us into abandoning the social solidarity that gave rise to unions, civil liberties and the great New Deal of FDR.
All of that is history now. We have entered the age of a new feudalism with its hierarchy of them that's got and those that don't. Solidarity is being redefined as identification with the lords we serve. In their welfare, we find our own. In our submission, they rejoice.
There is a way out of this mess but it won't be easy. As a nation we really do need to experience an awakening to the truth that we the people are no longer sovereign over our affairs. We are a conquered, colonized country. We have become no different than a banana republic complete with militarized police, financial assets in the hands of a few, an obsession with security and surveillance, institutional corruption and ridiculous posturing by political puppets. Only if we awaken to how thoroughly we have been enslaved will we be able to practice a solidarity of equals. We need a revolution of consciousness if freedom is to rise again.