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I am Shackled, I am Chained

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  1. Yail Bloor
    To the reader: Please try to read this blog entry in good humour. It was written as such.

    I'd like to bitch briefly -if I may- about he state of this foul world in which we are forced to exist. There are a growing number of issues bothering me on a regular basis and where better to rant and rave about them then here...? ...On reflection this may turn out to be slightly more then a brief bitch, but for good or ill, I promise we'll learn a thing or two along the way.

    I am a slave. I am shackled, I am chained. I work to feed my captors, and to finance the purchase of heavier chains. Yet, I am told I live in a free country. I am told the taxes I pay are for the greater good. I am told I should be so lucky, and that big brother knows best. Lies. I, and far too many like me, pay into a system that cages us, uses us, drains us, trapped in the bondage that is the illusion of 'freedom'.

    I am told many lies by what I'm going to refer to as the 'system'. This perhaps cliched expression seems to me to be an appropriate designation for the vast network of kafkaesque bureaucracies trying -successfully- to restrain us. Organised religion and government are examples of two such forces, but there are many elements making up the system. Some of these elements work in tandem -even with a certain synergy- while some seem to have opposing beliefs and goals, but it all comes out to the same end; control.

    Since I was a child I was told I had to do well in school and go to university so I could be successful. If I wanted to have any quality of life this was the path I must take. Then I would be happy. Then I could support a family, buy a home, raise children, my life would be what it should be -what they said it should be. This traditional view of life is a smokescreen, and probably the biggest one ever pulled over the eyes of the developed world. It is an artifact of the system. This standard of measuring success is the heaviest chain of all.

    Allow me to ellaborate; a man is measured not by his morals, ethics, values or hell, even stature. He is measured by his education, his bank account, his car and home. Phrased like that it seems wrong doesn't it? So how did it get to be this way? How is it I -and yes, you as well reader- came to be a slave? The answer lies in this measurement of success. The rich is no less a slave then the poor, except that the former can buy his way out of some of that bondage but still never escape it. Which goes to show what it all really comes down to; the aspiration of wealth.

    That is the catch. The ugly truth is that the desire for wealth reflects an inherent yearning for freedom, yet it is the desire for wealth that enslaves us. In our quest to obtain our alotted white picket fence and our suburban home with our 2.3 children we have forgotten what freedom really is and substituted it with the system's idealic definition of success, feeding the beast, as it were.

    The goal of the system is to keep us so hopelessly enamoured with this dream that we can be bled dry while we buzz around; busy little worker bees, mindlessly carrying out our assigned tasks without a second thought to the bigger picture. Who has time to question the powers-that-be when they have bills and a morgage to pay, and children to put through school? Not you reader? No, surely not, and nor do I for that matter. That's the point; a white picket fence for a cage, and financial obligations for chains.

    What is truely twisted here, though, is that it works. And we, as a people, even seem to like it. We have been coddled so long in the nurturing arms of big brother that we have come to rely on the very system robbing us of our freedom. What would we do, after-all, without rules and regulations? Without restrictions and signs? Surely we would collapse under the weight of our own humanity, unable to sustain ourselves without a higher power to guide us to 'success' and prohibit us from making our own mistakes and -by implication- our own decisions... Right?

    Wrong. We were suckered into captivity slowly, one baby step at a time. The irony of our situation is no coincidence -it was by design that we became dependant on the system, and it was by design that doing so stripped away more and more layers of freedom. Much like an onion, only so many layers can be peeled off before you are left with nothing, wondering were it all went.

    Well reader, I assure you, we are closer to the hollow center of that onion then we are to the outer skin. Any guess on my part of just how close would be purely speculation, but the ominous air of today's world leaves little doubt that we are well on our way. Ignorance, stupidity, fear and loathing are rampant -as they always were- but the system has honed the manipulation of these natural aspects of the human condition into a fine art.

    The masses are ignorant. A person can be smart or dumb, but people are stupid. As people, we are fed a great many lies on a daily basis, and we insatiably gobble them up -without proof of the fact- ever grateful to our benefactors for providing us with such wholesome morsels. We trustingly believe the things big brother has told us, and why shouldn't we? He has always been there to show us they way, shit we voted for him.

    Fear is a powerful motivator; a man will do a great number of irrational and illogical things when he is afraid, and at this point we as a people are terrified. They say 'boo' and we jump -nae- leap, before cowering in fear and handing over our wallets. Fear is also an excellent diversionary tactic, for example, I'm not making anything up when I say that we've known about global warming for decades but it's only been a hot-button issue since the war in Iraq.

    I'm going to re-route this train of thought before I'm lost on some tangent about the farce that is global warming; that's a whole other rant of it's own... At this point I could probably rifle-off several more examples of mass manipulation, but the dark shadow of a raving, wild-eyed conspiracy nut looms threateningly over my keyboard. Instead I'm going to trust that I have inspired you, reader, to start looking at the bigger picture, and leave that can of worms sealed on the shelf.

    So... were where we? Ah yes, center of the onion, right. How far can it go? How much freedom do we have left to loose? How many more laws and regulations can be heaped on us? How much more red tape can there possibly be in the world? Well that's the problem; you work for the system reader. You manufacture and process red tape, an endless supply of it. When will we say no more? ...Do we even want to?

    There was once a time -long before I was born- when people stood up, pointed out the shackles that bind us all, and proudly exclaimed that they wanted no part of it. I'm not going to make a statement as foolish as to say that the beat generation or rock and roll or the Berkely radicals or the hippies came close to changing things, but I am confident when I say this reader: They came a hell of a lot closer then my generation ever did -or even dared to try.

    Hunter S. Thompson might have said it best when he espoused the notion -way back in 1971- that "we are all wired into a survival trip now, no more of the speed that fueled the sixties". Which is a notion that holds true to this very day. It's a dog-eat-dog world; every man for himself; grab what you can and fuck everyone else. And thats just the way they wanted it; so blinded by the flurry of the rat race that we can't see whats going on around us.

    Things certainly have changed since the free-speech movement, and the people are silent. The system has grown beyond all confines of reasonability and we have grown complacent. Status-quo is the name of the game, and financial success is the scoreboard. Hell, some of us might not like the way things are, but you still gotta play the game, right? Indeed. No time for a revolution when your barely holding down a nine-to-five and living paycheck to paycheck, or working fourteen hour days to stay ahead of the competition while you build your fortune.

    To truely comprehend the depth of this malignant fact of life, perhaps it's time we all take a good hard look in the mirror. Sloth, gluttony and greed are raw, pure qualities of the human race. Stemming from these characteristics grew our drive to 'succeed' -which is essentially a way of saying 'to have more then one's neighbor'- and it is through that drive that we were so easily manipulated into bondage.

    We are the system. We dreamed it, built it and nurtured it until it was bigger then we ever thought possible, and we fucking love it. We thrive on it. Like children needing boundaries and discipline we need the system. It is with us that the fault ultimately lies for our incarceration; for who can blame the powers-that-be for seizing the reigns when we so eagerly handed them to any willing taker?

    Well, the writing is certainly on the wall now. We have spiraled so deep into the rabbit hole that we can no longer see that faint glint of light from whence we first stumbled and fell. Nor can we see any sign of a bottem to this wretched fucker. Hell, are you, reader, going to stand up and declare "No More!"? No, you won't, you'll go pay another bill. And as for me? I'm off to work. Because at the end of the day, what other choice do we have?

    Cazart

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  1. Yail Bloor
    No C.D. it wasn't directly because of you, but our conversation did make me realise that a great many people probably took this blog entry a little bit too seriously. While I do believe the things I've said here, I (intentionally) greatly exaggerated the tone and delivery. During our conversation it occured to me that the humor of it could be missed quite easily and that goes against my intent.

    This blog entry was supposed to be an interesting showcase of my views and an indictment of today's society, but most importantly it was supposed to be a fun read. I feel that taking it too seriously will greatly reduce the chances of that so, if anything, thanks for helping me see that. I hope I have managed to entertain a few people with my writing.
  2. C.D.rose
    Agreed. :thumbsup:

    Aye, sir. You too. :)

    Edit: Oh shit, did you add that introductory comment there because of me? Sorry about that then ;)...
  3. Yail Bloor
    C.D. You raise some good points here, but I'm beginning to suspect you may not have even read my whole entry. Perhaps I'm wrong, much of it was admittedly vague and open to interpretation, but the bastard rolled on longer then I expected in the first place, and I wasn't up to writing a book on the subject. However, I feel I covered why your average person can't just pack up there shit and go become a monk, what with the 'coddeling arms of big-brother' and 'layers of the onion' bits. To most people giving up the luxuries that the system has afforded us is like being in some prison in the middle of a vast desert with plenty of food and water were they are told "Sure, you can go... If you want". So even if your average person did see the bondage of slavery and the illusion of freedom, what alternative do they have? (Also covered in my entry).

    Personally, my fall back plan has always been to gather supplies and go try to survive in the deep woods. Live off the land, for good or ill. (Yikes I'm really making myself sound like a nut here. :laugh:) Did you know that shit is illegal though? Yup, you get caught, you get charged. Free country my ass. Slaves. Can't explain it any better then that.

    Our societies can only appear to progress further; every pat on the back for the system is a distraction so they can slide one by you while you're busy saying "Look at us, look how far we've come!" It's all misdirection in its deepest sense; these issues our governments pretend to spend so much time and money on are all for the sake of preservation of the system, ensuring the continued fattening of morally corrupt men via my tax dollars, in the name of law and order. I mean no ill-will when I say this, but further discussion on the subject seems unecessary, we disagree and that's fine. That's one of the few freedoms we have left and it's one I cherish. Neither of us is going to convince the other, and I wouldn't want to, we need all the positive attitudes we can get. Keep on keepin' on :D.
  4. C.D.rose
    So how are we slaves to the system? You can pack your bags right now, sell all your belongings, and move to a Shaolin abbey in the Himalayas to spend the rest of your life meditating. Noone is going to stop you. And secondly, my point was that, of all political systems in the world, Western-style democracies are best at protecting the populations' rights. You then reply with this:

    Well, yeah. The point is just that, if I gave those guys the choice between being hanged on a public square or getting strange looks from the elderly couple living next door, they will probably choose the latter. Of course, discrimination against homosexuals is stronger in our societies than I make it look in that comparison, but I'm sure you get the point: namely, until right here, our societies have proven themselves to be the best at elaborating and protecting gay rights. What I miss in your theory is why our societies somehow cannot progress further beyond where we are now, which makes destroying the system a necessity on the way to a better society.
  5. Yail Bloor
    "Here is a little girl playing on the street, who is growing up in a society where she suffers from neither the abject poverty other children endure nor the realities that girls and women face in other countries... ...And there is the gay couple I visited today, who is living openly in a society that at least discriminates much less against them than other societies would."

    If these are your examples of how society isn't completely twisted, you have missed the point entirely. I never said there is no good in the world, I said we are slaves to the system and the freedom to persue our own individual beliefs and ideals is restricted by society -which is true. It shouldn't be a pat on the back for society that the little girl will grow up to make less money then her male counterparts. Or that your gay friends are discriminated against less, thats just saying were better in comparison to some. There should have never had to have been a women's liberation movement, much less one that has still not fully succeeded. Your gay friends should have never been discriminated against at all, and the fact that they ever were, that is what I am talking about here. Whatever it is about the human race that we ever had to makes laws against discrimination of homosexuals is fucked up; discrimination should have never been there in the first place. Who first vilified the gays? The church. Well I'll tell you what, back when it all started, there was one guy who first wrote homosexuality is wrong -which isn't so bad in and of itself, just one guy right? The mistake was giving him the power to write it "in the name of god", and for being ignorant enough to unquestioningly believe it. Like I said, the foundation is fucked from the ground up, rotten to the core. Our failure is intertwined with our ceaseless desire to be ruled, to be presided over, and through that desire we eagerly elevate people (government) to positions of power over us from which they continue to make desicions that only further twist and deform what society could have been.

    You took me way too seriosuly if you think these are my 'convictions'. I feel you are making assumptions here, this blog entry is in no way a reflection of how I live my life, of what responsibilities I take on, or of my acceptance of burdens. I strongly disagree that veiwing society as rotten frees me of any responsibilities, if anything it makes them more glaring and poigniant... Hell, writing this is proof of the burden I carry, and pessimism does not negate that. Nor does it suggest in anyway my impact (or lack there of -whatever the case may be) on other people's lives.

    I fear my message was misinterpreted here; dispite the pessimistic doomed tone throughout, writing this was actually a light-hearted and cheerfull attempt on my part to get people thinking. The fatalism was meant to be a jolt -I wanted people to disagree, to stand up and say 'No, it's not too late'- and it appears to that end I have succeeded, if only slightly. And for the record, lack of optimism doesn't always mean a lack of effort.
  6. C.D.rose
    That is where we split I guess... I just don't agree with that assessment. I see good things happening every day. Everywhere. Here is a little girl playing on the street, who is growing up in a society where she suffers from neither the abject poverty other children endure nor the realities that girls and women face in other countries. There is the man who suffers from a disease that is very expensive to treat, and who owes his life to the fact that our society provides healthcare to every citizen. And there is the gay couple I visited today, who is living openly in a society that at least discriminates much less against them than other societies would.

    I am neither saying these things because I'm a convinced optimist nor because I am ignorant to the fact that even in the "best" or most humane societies in the world, many people suffer very badly. But so many others don't, who would have suffered terribly in the Europe or North American of one, or two, or three centuries ago.

    Of course, considering this society as "rotten to the core" has many advantages to it. It especially frees you from any direct responsibility for the things that are happening. You don't have to deal with the quite burdensome realization that even as a single individual, you can have an impact, albeit minimal, on other people's lives. That would entail a bunch of very difficult questions to ask yourself.

    I'm not implying that you are choosing your conviction because of laziness. I cannot know that. This is just a general thought that I have when confronted with "conspiracy theories" in a wider sense of the word.
  7. Yail Bloor
    "it's just that I think that the solution to many of these issues lies in making our societies better, instead of making them collapse and build some sort of utopian dreamworld... " This is impossible when the very foundations of our societies are rotten to the core. Societies were built and grown on the horrible realities that lead us to were we are now. The only hope is total collapse, and a complete reconstruction from the ground up. And even then we are only delaying the same outcome; we are enevitably doomed to failure. The wretchedness of our situation is a direct product of human nature and we are forever doomed to it's murky depths.

    "I think that we are doing at least some things right over here..." We are no doubt doing some things better, but it's still a far cry from right. On it's face the prison in which we are contained is preferable to the civil strifes of the countries you mentioned, but when the deal is done they are fighting not for true freedom, but for the same prison in which we exist. Which is the root of the hopelessness depicted in my blog entry; when we don't even remember what freedom is anymore, and we aspire to what our system has determined is proper -whatever the cost, what hope do we have as a people?
  8. C.D.rose
    Yeah no, I can understand people's frustration with politics in Western societies and all that, it's just that I think that the solution to many of these issues lies in making our societies better, instead of making them collapse and build some sort of utopian dreamworld... of course, that requires a lot of work. But still, when I see how many peoples - first the Tunisians and Egyptians, then the Libyans, now the Syrians - are willing to face violence, torture and even death in their fight to make their countries look more like Western democracies, I think that we are doing at least some things right over here...
  9. Yail Bloor
    Yeah I wont deny this rant is the same kind of tired bullshit to come out of just about every piece of writing on the subject. But I started working on this on a lark one day and it just kinda took off... and at the end of the deal, I actually really like the bastard. Please don't get the impression of me that I am bitter, or that these ideas consume my daily thoughts or anything; I just had a lot of fun writing this and thought others might have some fun reading it.
  10. C.D.rose
    Ok, then the impression that I got after reading the first lines was correct...
  11. Yail Bloor
    Well C.D.rose, we as human beings are completely and utterly screwed as a people, forever doomed to the bondage of government. Thats about as condensed as it gets.
  12. C.D.rose
    Is there any way you could provide us with... uhh... a more "condensed" form of your thoughts? That would be much appreciated.
  13. Synesthesiac
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty." - Winston Churchill

    Watch this video. Ignore the date in the title, its totally irrelivant to the motivational message of the video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lD5j8CRMKLo

    You don't have to agree with it all scientifically, but I don't see any harm in a video that is giving an overwhelmingly spiritually positive message.

    Might cheer you up a bit dude! That was one hell of a rant :)