What is Freedom?
I asked, what is freedom? The sun is setting on an epoch that will be remembered as the closest humanity ever came to a zombie apocalypse. The illusion of freedom has never been stronger. Are we free if we work tirelessly for minimum wage, then commuting to and from work for hours every day, only to end up using our free time just to recover? Humanity has never worked harder and we have never had more people starving than we do now.
Is freedom the ability to elect our leaders? The civil rights movements from the 50s to the 80s seemed to gain equality for all mankind through sheer will and we salute these freedom fighters and bastions of light against inequality, yet for all their struggle against oppression, We, the Y generation have seemed to turn off our ability to question our authorities in a time where it is sorely needed. Bankers play stock markets with your hard earned money, while insurance companies take gambles. The irony of an insurance company risking money is hardly humorous to the thousands of families who have lost pensions and policies that have sucked their pay-packets for decades. This goes against the very notion of the word insurance.
Insanity, it seems, has finally taken hold of reality. These industries lobby for control of your politicians by funding expensive campaigns to help them get elected by you. We have now taken politics to the realm of branding, trends and image, the artificial realm of perceptions; these constructs have no real value they just appeal to our lower selves. The ego, the part of the self that needs feeding to survive. In the USA, the cheerleaders yell, “I am a republican!” in the Queens Country it’s “I vote for the Tory!” and in the capital of inequality, Cape Town, they scream, “I vote DA”. We wear these affiliations and choices as Noddy badges, depicting our loyalty and patriotism, yet how much of these political parties public perception matches up to what they hold themselves accountable to? We have seen it all too often, elections come by, promises are made and they are never kept. Personal scandals seem to be given more attention, than the actual good of the people. This makes one wonder. What is the purpose of all this drum beating? Is it about the stated good of the people or is it about power? Like kids in a high school popularity contest, they badger their opponents with barrage upon barrage of defamation. And we watch with bated breath, this spectacle, a blood sport, it is entertainment.
And that, my friends, is the kicker. Politics, is just entertainment and entertainment was created by us as a distraction from reality. The reality is, we are the only species that pays to live on earth. And damn it, it is getting expensive.
Is freedom the ability to have whatever material items we want? It seems we, the Y-generation, have seen it fit to turn the struggle into a “hustle” to the ice ages, all the while burning up the planet so we can be so fresh we smell like amniotic fluid and the rotting carcass of a mammoth. The latest kicks and the smartest phone with the dumbest apps, a farting monkey, come over here; I will fart on your head, for free, dumb arse.
The economic struggle then, ranges from the absurd insecure middle class, to the anguishing working class below and the microscopic elite. The middle class chase after their neighbours collecting debt to finance the elite’s next private jet purchase, while the lower class sustain the entire world on slave labour refitted to suit our modern definitions. You see, what truly, is the difference between a slave and a man frying potatoes at McDonald’s at 4am in the morning or, the miner who spends years, breaking his back in a mine, only to retire with a measly pension and little to no savings or, a victim of human trafficking? We have conveniently swapped the whip for labour laws and legislation proposed to defend the silent worker; labour unions provide a voice to the voiceless worker as well. All these measures exist, yet do not address the core problem; they do dress them up though, in a nice shiny coat, a black suit and tie, with a gas mask ready to send you to the chamber if your voice gets too loud.
The core of this, with mining as an example, is that a piece of paper in the form of a permit or a lease allows a man to own land and all its contained resources, then under economic subjugation he employs other people to retrieve valuable resources for him. He then claims these as his own (legally) and sells it off paying those people in his employ only a fraction of what he makes off the work on their backs. Where is the difference to slavery? The slave’s choice of cotton field?
The lunacy of it all is compounded when we look at what we consider valuable. Let us use usefulness relative to survival and life as a measure for value. Take a diamond for instance. A diamond has no real practical applications barring industrial and could be replaced with other materials if need be, they are not edible and are very expensive to dig out of the ground. Despite all of this they cost more than, say, a loaf of bread, which in actuality has way more use for a human being.
Then to compound this further, we use money as a means to transfer value, yet money is nothing more than a piece of paper and indeed in most cases just a bunch of numbers on a computer screen. Previously, money was backed by a gold standard, but in recent times it has been downgraded to nothing more than a promissory note.
I could go into much more detail but for those interested, watch this.
Economic freedom then, in an economy determined by a fictitious notion of scarcity, is something of a contradiction. For true economic freedom we would have to be free of
a.) Our psychopathic valuation of useless things
b.) Ownership of resources, also
c.) The false deity of money
I say deity, because the negative forces within yourself would have you believe that the struggle is economic. That by safe guarding your financial freedom you will have a passage to explore all that matters to you. Yet once money becomes your God, it will be all you seek to feed. We are bred to be consumers and so we would do our quest for freedom a huge favour by resisting this urge to consume unnecessarily. If we look at humanity as a whole and do not see ourselves separately from our fellow man, it becomes easy to see that economic freedom is an impossibility under current conditions, where one man slaves so another can have a useless gadget and as he plays with his neon multi tentacle dildo, you should ask yourself, is this really the best it can be? Economic freedom then, is just a phrase, representing an idea that cannot function within the current construct; it makes a hypocrite of us all.
Is the right to be that hypocrite? Yet, are you free to be? We are increasingly becoming regulated by a nanny state. Governments tell women what they can and can’t do with their unborn children, where you can and can’t smoke a cigarette, what you can and can’t smoke, what you can’t take on an international flight, we have to be subjected to invasive searches and constant surveillance all under the auspices of some imagined threat.
You are socially free, as long as you abide the status quo.
True social freedom would be the ADD kid allowed to reach his full potential without Ritalin, Attention Deficit Disorder? Perhaps the poor kid just needs extra ATTENTION? How many of us have had to play small to accommodate others? We are the new age sheep, we do not need a sheep dog, and we keep each other in check.
Perhaps then, freedom needs nothing before it and after. Perhaps, freedom is running in the hills naked and screaming about dandelions and butterflies. Perhaps, freedom is the mad man, given in to the insanity of being sane in this twisted world. Certainly, freedom should not be a word. Certainly freedom exists in that silent part of us, the part only known to us. Certainly freedom is ours, always.
Certainly. We are free. Whenever we choose to be.