I have never posted something written by someone else before, but I found the following passage by Jacques Elull incredibly on point. Given the insanity of our world--an economic "recovery" where the banks we bailed out are making billions and giving hundreds of millions in bonuses while continuing to foreclose on people and driving them into homelessness, an environment that continues to collapse while we pretend it has nothing to do with us, a healthcare system and reform of same that does nothing to raise the deep questions around what is health, the morality of rationed care, and why corporations gets rich off the suffering of others, the escalations of our war in Afghanistan and the civil war that is replacing our war in Iraq (mocking the terrible sacrifices of all our brave soldiers), etc.-- Elull's words, written over three decades ago, need to be heard.
I found them (in a longer form) in this month's issue of Adbuster's magazine. I'd love to hear your responses to them.
"We see the mistakes we have made, but we continue to make them with an apparent blind obstinacy… We know the implications of pollution, but we go on calmly polluting the air, the rivers and the oceans. We know people are going mad from living in huge conglomerations, but we, like automatons, go on building them. We know the dangers of pesticides and chemical fertilizers, but we continue to use them in increasingly massive doses….
"Our speed is constantly increasing, and it does not matter where we are going. We are caught up in the madness and hubris of the dance of death: the important thing is the dance… We are no longer worried about what will emerge from it or about the void it points to. We are content to die of dancing. Our generation is not even capable of cynicism, it take a kind of terrible greatness to say, “After me, the deluge.” No one says that today; on the contrary, everyone is glutted with promises and regards the mad dance as a way to authentic renewal. Yet there is no goal, nothing transcendent, no value to light the way; the movement is enough.
"The nihilistic revolution has succeeded. Today’s political activists who still claim to be revolutionaries have nothing to put in nihilism’s place. Movement for movement’s sake, thorough study for study’s sake, the revolution for the revolution’s sake: that, they say, is the only way to escape the system. It is a remarkable thing, however, that this system renders mad not only those who are part of it but those who reject it as well. The system is now the god that makes us mad, but it is a god we have created with our won minds."
(From The Betrayal of the West by Jacques Ellul)