Roughly 300 hundred miles south of me, in southern Illinois, lies the town of Belleville (population 41,000). The story I’m linking you to (here!) reminds me of what a coworker said when I told him that I thought fascism was the worst thing to creep into any form of government. Of course, being a rabid anti-communist, he disagreed, saying that communism is worse because “fascism comes and goes.” I believe that communism is, like “democracy,” a sort of blanket term for an ideal which can never be fully achieved, but can be strived for. What truly matters is what people are able to accomplish in reaching toward the ideal. In my humble opinion, attempts to build communist societies fail because they attempt to deny the self-centered, corrupt aspects of the fallen human state. They usually wind up tilting, often to genocidal degrees, toward paranoid totalitarianism as a result. Attempts to establish and maintain democratic societies are not much less tenuous, because they seem to place too much trust in the better parts of human nature. Nominal democracies are, I believe, fragile experiments because the majority of the people (who are supposed to wield the power) are too selfish, lazy, and therefore functionally ignorant to properly exercise their power. How else do you explain ridiculously low voter turnouts, the continued success of the Republican Party, and debacles like the Vietnam War? And, more to my point, as illustrated in the Belleville story, fascism is always there, waiting to make itself comfortable. Let me stop before I ramble any further. I will, however, leave you with a quote within a quote, from author John Zerzan:
I recently saw a quote by Exene Cervenka, the lead singer in the band X, in which she said, “I’ve killed way more people than Kaczynski, because I’ve been paying a lot of taxes in the last fifteen years, and he hasn’t.” I was really struck by what an effective point that is. It reminds us we’re all implicated.