Rebellion, Revolution, & Catch 22

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“The enemy is anybody who’s going to get you killed…don’t you forget that, because the longer you remember it, the longer you might live.”  —John Yossarian from “Catch 22” by Joseph Heller

For those of us here in the Belly of the Beast who were weaned, raised, and educated on her toxic mix of capitalism and propaganda, the word “revolution” automatically conjures up images of The American Revolutionary War.  But as Dmitry Orlov points out; “The American Revolution wasn’t a revolution at all because the slave-owning, genocidal sponsors of international piracy remained in power under the new administration.”   In the end, after all the bodies had been buried, King George was out, President George was in, and it was business as usual among the wealthy upper crust, their underlings, and the slaves.  An actual revolution requires a change in ideology.  The main change here was in the profit margins.  No more pesky taxes to pay to the British Crown.  This was no revolution.  More like just a bloody rebellion against upper management.

241 years later, The Beast has grown to previously unimagined proportions.  She has a voracious appetite which can never be satisfied. Built upon the backs of kidnapped Africans and fed with the blood of an advanced Indigenous culture, her ever-evolving form of capitalism has made generations of slave-owners and Indian-killers wealthy and powerful beyond their wildest dreams.  But to survive, The Beast must grow.  And in order to grow, she has been forced to explore and move far beyond her borders.  The slave-owners who control and handle her, maintain a keen eye on the far horizon.  Today the world, tomorrow the universe.  Like The Beast herself, the slave-owners have grown ever fatter, and have become completely oblivious to the concept of ever having enough.  No matter what the cost and to whom.  There’s a name for this, and it’s either psychopathy or sociopathy.  I’ve always had trouble understanding the difference.  The Beast has a name too.  She is called Fascism.
Today’s multi-national slave-owners know no borders.  Fascism (the merger of state and corporate power, by Mussolini’s own definition) has swiftly and stealthily become the world-wide status quo.  So-called democracy now boils down to a choice between a swift kick in the ass or a sharp stick in the eye.  Countries refusing to comply with the rules of the game are poked, prodded, hounded, bribed, raped, murdered, and bombed until they cry “uncle” and start toeing the line.  The underlings (middle class) and impoverished (slaves) are merging into one vast human commodity.  On the new level playing field of Fascism, there are just two classes; slave-owners and slave laborers.  Ethnicity, nationality, and religion perform no function other than to distract the minions of slaves, playing them against each other, lest they notice their owners behind the curtain, pulling the levers and controlling media misinformation while playing patriotic songs, maintaining a constant state of warfare, carrying on a seemingly odd combination of drug distribution and a war against drugs, polluting food, water, and air, and poisoning children’s minds while picking slave pockets clean of the last few remnants of wealth.  Zbigniew Brezinski, may he burn in Hell, one of the top poster boys for the beast called Fascism, described the situation concisely and accurately; “People, governments, and economies of all nations must serve the needs of multinational banks and corporations.”  Emphasis on “must”, and not included, but implied; “or else”.

Paddy Chayefsky’s brilliant script for the movie Network (1976), includes this memorable speech by Ned Beatty (as Megacorp CEO Arthur Jensen), learning the self-appointed prophet of the airwaves (Beale, played by Peter Finch), that “the world is a corporation, and that money is everything.” Art imitating life imitating art. All that talk about patriotism, nationality, heroism, means nothing to these people. 

“The World is a Business Mr Beale”

Unless you happen to be a psychopathic, slave-owning Fascist, you’re probably more than just a little concerned about your future, and that of your progeny.  Unless you’re a card-carrying member of The Bilderberg Group, The Trilateral Commission, or Council on Foreign Relations, and believe strongly in the concept of a One World Government, entirely owned and operated by multinational banks and corporations, you would probably rather seek other solutions to the problems faced by mankind.  Unless you are an obscenely wealthy member of America’s Wehrwirtschaftsfuhrer class, raking in hundreds of millions in annual blood-bucks, you’re likely getting tired of wars waged to enrich the few, at the expense of the many.  Unless you still believe with all your heart and soul in the two party American political system, and still cling to the belief that peace on earth and goodwill toward all people can be achieved within that hopelessly broken scam, then you’d like nothing better than to do whatever it takes to change it.  Unless you’re an elected government official who’s made a fortune being bought and paid for by multinational corporate lobbyists, you dream of change.  Not the kind of change once promised by Barack Obama and not the change at the bottom of my pants pocket.

In “Catch 22” John Yossarian found himself in a paradoxical double bind.  As a U.S. Army B-25 bombardier stationed in Europe during World War II, he had come to consider his commanding officers the true enemies.  Each mission flown looked like it might be the last, as his fellow pilots were being shot from the sky, their numbers dwindling daily.  Yossarian had no aspirations to become a dead hero, but the only apparent way to avoid duty was to be declared crazy and be grounded.  There was only one catch, and that was Catch 22.  It stated that any pilot making application to be declared mentally unfit for duty was showing a perfectly rational concern for his own safety, and was therefore sane and fit for duty.

As a slave who serves the whims and desires of multinational banks and corporations, I find myself in a classic case of Catch 22.  Much like Yossarian, I can see no logical way out of this double bind.  The slave-owners need to be stopped, and their beast called Fascism must be killed.  Blinded by power and greed, those who make all the rules are leading us down a path which can only end in death and destruction.  Nuclear holocaust is on the near horizon as our owners line up, flexing their military muscles against the relative sanity of such alliances as BRICS and ALBA.  It appears that only a revolution can stop the carnage, but revolution means violence.  The slave-owners are the most powerful and heavily-armed group in history, and will protect their power and wealth with everything they have.  I tend to hang out with a non-violent group.  The Lennon, Gandhi, King, crowd.  Never owned a gun, and never hope to.
Catch 22.  The U.S.A. needs a revolution, and not just another turnover of upper management.  An actual revolution with a complete change in ideology.  But revolutions require violence, bloodshed, carnage, and death.  Lots of death.  Not really my forte.  Catch 22.  Death and destruction by standing by, doing nothing…or death and destruction by bloody revolution.
Upon thoughtful consideration, I believe that Yossarian had the right idea when he said; “The enemy is anyone who’s going to get you killed…”  At the conclusion of Catch 22, Yossarian pledged to follow the example of a fellow pilot who managed to survive the carnage, and escaped to Sweden.  And so we leave a hopeful John Yossarian, who’s apparently slipped the bondage of double bind.  I believe I’ll do the same.  When it comes to a choice between death or death, I choose life.  Our enemies are the slave-owners, the war profiteers, the psychopaths and sociopaths, The Beast called Fascism, and all those who believe that might makes right.  Our enemies are a bloviating, drama queen president, threatening DPRK with “fire and fury”, and his minions of noxious, numbskull, neocon handlers.  Violence begets violence.  If and when some unhinged jackal like Trump pushes the red button, and when the dust of nuclear winter finally settles, the tattered remnants of civilization (best case scenario) might need a few voices of reason.  I plan on being one of them.  

About the Author
JOHN R. HALL, Senior Contributing Editor John R. Hall is a street-trained agnotologist with an advanced degree in American Ignorance. Other hats include: photojournalist, novelist, restaurateur, mountaineer, grocer, nurseryman, and janitor. He’s written three novels which have been read by almost nobody: ‘Embracing Darwin’, ‘Last Dance in Lubberland’, and ‘Atlas fumbled’. An untrained writer and college drop-out, he began his short career in journalism writing the ‘Excursion’ column for The Jackson Hole News & Guide. More recently he penned the ‘Left Column’ for The Molokai Island Times; appropriately on the island once known as a leper colony. John currently resides, writes, and protests injustice in the shadow of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, and walks among the spirits of those who once occupied the 79 Disappeared Pueblos. Read more John Halls’s articles. 

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uza2-zombienationThe slave-owners who control and handle her, maintain a keen eye on the far horizon.  Today the world, tomorrow the universe.  Like The Beast herself, the slave-owners have grown ever fatter, and have become completely oblivious to the concept of ever having enough.  No matter what the cost and to whom.  There’s a name for this, and it’s either psychopathy or sociopathy.  I’ve always had trouble understanding the difference.  The Beast has a name too.  She is called Fascism.



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