Monday, January 23, 2006

Off the Plantation

"I freed thousands of slaves in my life and I could have freed thousands more, had they known they were slaves".

- Harriet Tubman

Yeah, officer from overseer
You need a little clarity?
Check the similarity!


The society of the U.S.A is remarkably similar to the plantation system. A very small minority of the population owns a large majority of the wealth and sets policy for the rest of the people to live and die by. Along with these modern planatation owners there are the latter day equivalents of the rest of the system: the wait staff and mammies living in the Big House. Most of them like their position and will work hard to retain their place of priviledge. The overseers who relish the use of force to keep the fieldhands in check. They see this excercise as validation of their superiority, when in fact it is a symptom of a deeper pathology. Finally, we have the large majority composed of field hands, who are given just enough table scraps, kept just exhausted enough, and threatened with enough violence/promised eternal salvation to prevent a large scale insurrection. It is a tenuous balance, but the glue that holds it together is the economic dependency of all involved, backed up by the threat of violence. But the system is doomed, as all unsustainable systems are. It is only a matter of time before declining natural resources result in the the standard of living reaching critical mass and a mass exodus off/collapse of the plantation. There will be a revolution and the new equilibrium will be established. But this revolution is less likely to resemble the American Revolution of 1776 and more likely to resemble the French Revolution of 1789. Payback is a muffa and overseers/collaborating house servants get cut no slack.