Capitalism, explained by It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.
A Letter from China
This is the first public statement by a member of Red Spark currently facing felony charges for the events on May 1st in Seattle.
I know it is winter where you are and I know how miserable Seattle winter can be—how it seems every year that it will never end. I’ll be back there with you soon. But for now all I want to say is simply: take heart. May 1st happened on the cusp of summer, at the apex of a year of the most beautiful cycle of revolt and insurrection in half a century. We are a part of that. We always have been.
But even at the height of it, when those warm winds first reached us from North Africa and we dared to long for the hottest of seasons—even then we knew the rain was coming. Because it always comes.
For those in my generation (the poorest since the Great Depression) this is simply the most recent form of something abysmally familiar. We grew up in the age of torture, the age of Bush and Obama, of indefinite detention and mass incarceration. The only constants in our lives have been war, prison and debt. A massive police-state apparatus originally constructed in wars on “drugs” or “terror” to target communities of color, immigrants and muslims is now being slowly retooled to suppress explicitly political dissent.
But I also know that some of you are old enough to remember this from long before. Grand juries convened to investigate and indict individuals for their political sympathies. The nationwide raids conducted against the Black Panthers. Today the rain is just starting and it must appear hardly as heavy as it fell then.
Comrades of the North. In solidarity. In struggle for revolution.
All imperialist institutions are.
This is the United States. This is the pysops it uses to continue holding on to its legitimacy with the people that live here.
You have to wonder - or actually, you don’t because the answer is so distressingly obvious - would these throngs pour into the streets to celebrate in this fashion if it were announced that a cure for cancer had been discovered, or for AIDS? Would thousands of people be jumping up and down belting out patriotic chants if the president were to announce that our country’s scientists had found a new, affordable method for wiping out all childhood disease, malnutrition or malaria in poor countries around the world? Though these maladies kill far more than Osama bin Laden ever dreamt of slaughtering, and although any of these developments would be a source of intense pride for millions, there is almost no chance that they would be met with drunken revelry. Partying is what we do when we kill people, when we beat someone, when we grind them to dust. It is not what we do when we save lives or end suffering. Saving lives or doing humanitarianism is like making love, while killing people is tantamount to a good, hard, and largely one-sided fuck; and unfortunately we know which of these two things men, in particular, are more apt to prefer.
I have always said, heard, that it would not be strange that there had been civilisation on Mars, but maybe capitalism arrived there, imperialism arrived and finished off the planet.