3.02.2011

The Value of People's Worth


Some of you may be familiar with the "Bidder 70" trial of Tim DeChristopher. In short, DeChristopher disrupted a federal auction of Utah lands that were being sold to oil and coal companies. He disrupted the auction by bidding on and purchasing some of this land so it would be protected from drilling and such. He of course did not actually have enough money but this was his direct action to try and protect what he believed in. His trial started on February 28th, 2011. At which time a group called Peaceful Uprising called for supporters to rally at his trial to make sure that everyone knew how much Utahns and other Americans supported DeChristopher's actions. A funny thing happened for me, however, I initially decided not to attend the rally because I had to work...

Having to work is the end all for many people. It drives when and how they do things. Here was an event I strongly wanted to attend, yet I had doubts because some corporate jag-off expected me to sit in a dark cubicle all day typing into a box. The absurdity is overwhelming. How did I get this way? When did my priorities become so backwards? But some might say that it's important to attend your job becuase you need to make money to support yourself. Well, that's true. If I don't work, I won't not survive; I must work for money which I exchange for food, clothing and shelter (and a bunch of other useless crap as well). How convenient for the corporate machine. I really have no option, I'll always need SOME kind of job... at least that is what we're raised to believe.

Value used to be in things like food and clothing; that makes sense, I need to eat and I need to stay warm. Then gold and silver was considered valuable and could be used for trade; makes less sense but at least this is a tangible item found in the earth. Paper bank notes were later invented so the bank or your employer didn't actually have to pay gold directly to you, they could basically "owe" you. Somehow that practice caught on resulting in modern day currency. Stranger yet is what we've arrived at most recently: imaginary value. You get the idea of value directly deposited into your account each pay period. Supposedly there is gold somewhere to back this up, but in reality there simply isn't. You have been conditioned to believe that an imaginary figure in an electronic account is valuable. Lucky no one goes in and screws up the system... I mean can you really prove how much "value" you have? Our current system can be compared to the Tulip Mania in Holland in the 17th century: people give worth to things merely based on a popular delusion.

When food and shelter was no longer enough to scare citizens into falling in line, other things were invented to make sure you kept coming back to work. Phones, makeup, the newest car, the freshest clothes, the list goes on with things that keep you delirious. How much do you pay for a haircut? Oh you can't cut your own hair? Says who? They've fooled us into policing ourselves: if your hair is ugly and unkempt your self-worth shrinks smaller and smaller, your peers will make sure of that. So yet again, just surviving isn't enough, work work work to save yourself from social ridicule. I'm a hypocrite in all sorts of ways, but here I can at least say I haven't had a "professional" cut my hair since I was a teenager; my hair is quite dull and I am proud to say I don't give a fuck. Now if I could just quit playing video games...

So this brings me right back around to the matter at hand. Something very physically real is happening in Utah and all over the nation; after the system crashes and my cubicle stands empty in decay, I'll have to rely once again on something tangible to save not only my iPod but my life. Yet, that very Utah land I'll have to rely upon is being pillaged and it will not be able to recover in my lifetime. This is something DeChristopher understood. Once again I wonder why I hesitated even a little bit when deciding whether or not to speak out for what I hold dearly.

Remember how the Tulip Mania ended-- you might want to believe that everything can last forever but it surely will not. Your bank account is imaginary. Your "value" is imaginary. It's not hard to strip you of something you never really had in the first place. The entire idea of an "economy" was made up by someone one day, prices are driven up and down by legal gambling on Wall Street; it's most definitely not "just the way of the world". They have forced this sytem upon you and make you believe you have no other choice. Re-think and re-evolve. I assure you there is an alternative to all of... this... everyday, going to work, having the job done on us.

"Your mind for a job, your mind for a TV, your mind for a hair dryer, your mind for consumption....
Devastating your natural shelters making you homeless on earth, chasing you into illusions fooling you, making you pretend you can run away from the ravishing of your spirit." JT

PS- I went to the rally.

2 comments:

Dave said...

Been a while since I was here- really like this- I too had some consternation about not being able to attend the rally- I was in the middle of some experiments that were time sensitive and go on for months- missing one day will throw the whole thing off. So I didn't go- I can justify it by saying my research MAY save lives later on, but it may not... because they get cancer that we can't treat effectively from the contaminants in the environment caused by the exploitation of the very land DeChristopher was trying to save... maybe I should have gone...

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