Cynics, Gurus, Prayers and Greed

Today I met another cynic who doesn’t believe “it” can be done. You can fill in the blank for her. What do you assume can’t be done? Getting money out of politics? Moving the mountain that would get us to really address global warming? Getting a third party’s presidential candidate elected? Getting money out of politics? Passing a 28th Amendment? How about making sure our ballot box is safe, secure, and counted correctly? What would it take to make young people care enough about politics to vote?

Can we deal with issues like poverty, hunger, homelessness by applying the lessons in a spiritual guru’s self-help books? I’m waiting for a self-help guru to get into the trenches with me. I’ve been places that have really gotten depressing lately. I’d like to know what they do when everyone is telling you it can’t be done. Tony Robbins? Oprah? Marianne Williamson? I voted for Ms. Williamson in the primaries in California’s 33rd District. She wasn’t one of the top two to advance to the general election. Now that’s a dose of reality.

Below is my “favorite” quote from Woodrow Wilson’s book, The New Freedom. I’ve italicized it so that you can see exactly which words need your attention. We have a boogie man in our midst and it’s greed. The whole lot of us are going to have to come into the trenches and not just pray, not just meditate, not just agitate, but organize and activate to fight the greedy bastards. We have to be like the bully’s Mom and set boundaries and tell him “NO!”

You tell them, Woody.

“Shall we try to get the grip of monopoly away from our lives, or shall we not? Shall we withhold our hand and say monopoly is inevitable, that all that we can do is to regulate it? Shall we say that all that we can do is to put government in competition with monopoly and try its strength against it? Shall we admit that the creature of our own hands is stronger than we are? We have been dreading all along the time when the combined power of high finance would be greater than the power of the government. Have we come to a time when the President of the United States or any man who wishes to be the President must doff his cap in the presence of this high finance, and say, “You are our inevitable master, but we will see how we can make the best of it?”

“We are at the parting of the ways. We have, not one or two or three, but many, established and formidable monopolies in the United States. We have, not one or two, but many, fields of endeavor into which it is difficult, if not impossible, for the independent man to enter. We have restricted credit, we have restricted opportunity, we have controlled development, and we have come to be one of the worst ruled, one of the most completely controlled and dominated, governments in the civilized world—no longer a government by free opinion, no longer a government by conviction and the vote of the majority, but a government by the opinion and the duress of small groups of dominant men.”

Wilson, Woodrow. “Chapter 9/Benevolence or Justice?” The New Freedom; a Call for the Emancipation of the Generous Energies of a People. New York and Garden City: Doubleday, Page, 1913. 200-201. Print.


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